Chapter 88.2 – Protagonist: Do you believe me?
The script that the Tower of God prepared for the tower climbers is simple. Each trial is shaped by the characteristics and talents of each race. The demons must be cruel, the undead must be evil, the humans must be selfish, the dragons must be greedy, the elves must be indifferent, the beastkin must be violent, the gnomes must be fanatical, and the angels… they paid for their racial gift with their humility and therefore must be arrogant.
A hint of perplexity flashed through Eric’s eyes but his indignation was too great and soon replaced the confusion.
“So you disregard the lives of others just to ascend the Tower of God?”
“As the lord governor said, if they die, what does it have to do with me?” Xiu sneered.
The two people’s confrontation almost put Du Ze in a trance. He imagined that he was watching a scene from “Mixed Blood.” The protagonist has injured people and done great harm to the world while the rival has been saving people. They stood together, one in the dark side and the other on the side of light— two contrasting sides that clearly delineate good and evil.
Eric gave Xiu a meaningful glance and seemed to think that he had made a serious mistake in trying to reason with a heretic. The son of god change the direction of his gaze and his dark green eyes reflected Du Ze’s figure.
“God’s Messenger, do you also believe this …?”
Once Du Ze was involved, it was as though Xiu’s nilin (sensitive/weak spot) had been touched. Xiu stopped smiling and his expression became aggressive.
Eric wasn’t afraid of the danger in Xiu’s eyes. He stared at Du Ze and, as if to force Du Ze to make a choice, said: “Do you think he is right?”
Du Ze involuntarily looked at Xiu and found that Xiu was also looking at him.
The dragon did not explain anything, he just asked: “Do you believe me?”
Two people; two choices. Those with a normal thought process will certainly judge that Eric’s position is just, and Du Ze has never approved of the inhumane cruelty of the protagonist in “Mixed Blood.” But currently Du Ze’s eyes were on Xiu and Eric. He did not have to consider it at all and he can make the correct choice right away.
“I believe you.” In order to say the words in the correct tone, Du Ze spoke slowly, which made his voice especially serious and solemn as if he was swearing an eternal oath. He looked at Eric and repeated his answer to the son of god: “I believe in Xiu.”
Eric is still the same “Eric” in “Mixed Blood” but the Xiu at his side is no longer the “Xiu” in “Mixed Blood.” That’s enough.
Eric’s eyes filled with disappointment and puzzlement.
Xiu sighed. He grabbed Du Ze, suddenly jerking Du Ze’s body towards him as though he liked this person so much that he wanted to stuff the black-haired youth into his flesh and blood. “Let’s go.”
Du Ze hurriedly held on to the doujinshi that had nearly slipped out of his hands, missing his chance to reject this opportunity. Xiu held Du Ze in his arms very tightly and a silly, cute person with an impassive face held the doujinshi, not knowing where to look. His line of sight fell behind them and he discovered that Eric did not withdraw but was silently following them.
When they arrived in the new village, even though all of the residents went down on their knees to beg for mercy, they were all evicted from the village by the soldiers and watched as their homes were engulfed by darkness. At this point, Du Ze actually had some idea of what Xiu wanted to do: He was forcing all the people to fall, forcing everyone to rebel against the angels — he wanted to destroy the angels, including the governor. If the governor dies, then the one with the next highest seniority, Xiu, will probably be his chosen replacement.
The end was near and the process was bloody. The cries of the people echoed in the darkness. Du Ze glanced at Eric. The blond son of god was standing at the edge of the town. His fists were clenched so tightly that his nails had dug into his palms, making them bleed. However, when the people knelt, when the soldiers drove them out, and when the mages cast the spell, he remained silent. Eric seemed to know that he wouldn’t be able to stop them so he stayed mute.
But Eric was not one to give up so quickly.
A light suddenly appeared between heaven and earth. The civilians kneeling on the ground raised their heads in dismay. A feather of light fell onto the village covered in darkness. It was not dazzlingly bright but shone with a soft light as it drove away the darkness and melted. Xiu suddenly jerked his head to look back, his scarlet eyes staring at Eric. As the feather dissolved into the air, the light returned to the town and all the civilians were pleasantly surprised. They knelt down again, this time in gratitude.
“Thank you, thank you!” The villagers looked up at the son of god reverently and his face flushed. “You are the incarnation of the god of light!”
The corners of Eric’s mouth finally loosened slightly, revealing a bright smile. “This is what I should do.”
Du Ze felt as though his heart had been twisted by pliers. The pain made his chest ache. In front of him, Eric was bathed in light and the blond man looked exceptionally bright and beautiful – he looked like that person in the past. Even knowing that Eric would hinder Xiu’s plans, Du Ze did not want to repudiate the current Eric, because that would be to repudiate the Xiu of the past who would even hurt himself to help others.
However, the one who repudiated and Eric and thereby repudiated the past Xiu, was none other than Xiu himself.
“Do you think you can save them? Will they really be thankful to you?” Xiu gazed at the Eric and the smile on the silver-haired dragon’s face was colder than his expression when he wasn’t smiling. “I always thought you were naïve but I didn’t think you were stupid enough to do that.”
Xiu’s words were like a freezing wind pouring into Du Ze’s clothes and penetrating him with its coldness. Every word he spoke was mocking his past as well as Eric.
—— Xiu, Why are you so good to everyone?
—— I just did what I had to do.
—— Do you think they’ll really appreciate you if you save them?
Xiu said it to Eric and to his past self who was too stupid.
Eric and Xiu look at each other. Eric stood in the light and the shadow around Xiu was especially dark.
‘You are miserable.” Eric said: “In your eyes, everyone is ugly. You don’t trust other people, you only care about yourself. You are pathetic.”
The emotions inside of him were about to explode. Du Ze wanted to tell Eric that the man he was accusing had once naively believed in goodness, but even the people he rescued betrayed him. He was abandoned and betrayed by all his friends and allies. Whenever he still chose to believe in people, he would just be betrayed again and again, repeatedly hurt until he was on the verge of death — it was only then that his faith in others was destroyed.
The words that Du Ze was about to speak was interrupted by Xiu’s laughter. The sound was very refreshing and the expression on his face was full of a wanton arrogance.
“Eric.” This was the first time that he called Eric by his name. “You’ll soon know who the pathetic man really is.”
“There’s one more thing you’re wrong about.” Xiu did not argue about Eric’s estimation of himself but only corrected one point. “There is a person who makes me believe in myself even if I don’t care about it.”
Xiu hugged Du Ze and kissed his black hair, his eyes showing a deep affection. “I just want this one, that’s all.”
Eric involuntarily looked away, feeling that it was the behavior of someone trying to escape defeat.