I tossed bits of wood into the fire. I watched the fire gently flicker while I was lying down to the side. Some say we think about all sorts of things at night, because it’s incomparably lonely at night. You don’t have to speak or do anything and can’t sleep, so you can’t help but begin to recall all sorts of memories. My memories were heartbreaking. The nice memories always replayed in my mind. There was always a voice in my mind begging me to return. It wanted me to go to my mom to tell her that I didn’t want to die. She would tell me I could live as long as I had the mana mark. However, I told myself I couldn’t do that. I would truly become a parasite if I did that.
I suddenly heard something. I raised my head to look in the direction of the sound. There shouldn’t be anything dangerous to me in the forest. The shrubs rustled. I looked in the direction of the shrubs and picked up the long sword by the side. Although an animal shouldn’t be dangerous, it’d be dangerous if it was an elf or a human.
A long ear appeared from the shrubs. It was the huge type of rabbit from this world. Perhaps it came out for a midnight snack, as it couldn’t sleep at night; it was still chewing on grass in its mouth. It was displeased with me. I had the impression it was complaining about me lighting up a fire.
My gaze stopped at the rabbit’s neck for some reason. I could seemingly see the throbbing veins underneath its white fur. I could seemingly see the blood inside the veins. I had an urge to kill. I wanted to kill it. I thought, “It shouldn’t be a problem for me to leap over and suck its blood. It’s just a rabbit, after all.”
Supposedly noticing danger, the rabbit slowly retreated two steps and vanished into the darkness. I suddenly came to my senses after it vanished from sight. I blankly looked in the direction that the rabbit vanished. I had no idea what I just thought. I silently said in my mind, “I didn’t intend to bother with the rabbit, so why did I suddenly have an urge to suck its blood? It must be due to me sucking Mommy Vyvyan’s blood every night…”
I didn’t have anyone to suck blood from. I, therefore, directed the thirst to the rabbit. What I really wanted wasn’t its blood, but the mana in its blood. I suddenly remembered the deer Mom sucked dry. Perhaps the same thing happened then. I could see myself gradually developing into a full-fledged dark elf.
What made the Galadriel Tribe stronger than other dark elven tribes was the fact they could suppress their urge to suck mana. I couldn’t be any more ordinary as an elf in my state, so I craved blood, subsequently craving the mana of others.
I didn’t want to become a parasite elf and definitely didn’t want to rely on sucking blood to live. I couldn’t accept that. That was no elf; that would a crazed, murderous demon. That was a vampire. That wasn’t the state I wanted to be in. If others had to die for me to live, I’d rather die. I was a human and an elf, not a wild beast. I didn’t need tributes or to be fed. I had an urge to suck blood just seeing a rabbit. Hence the question, would I be able to hold myself back when I see other elves, my wife, or my children in the future? At that point, choosing death was the best option for others, my family and myself.
I shook my head to desperately try to throw out the thought of living on that I came to mind. I didn’t want to hear those thoughts again. I had to protect my family. I couldn’t become a dark elf who killed to survive. Mom already changed. I couldn’t change. Mom should’ve been able to control herself. If I grew addicted to blood, who’d be able to save me?
The plan was to go to Duargana tomorrow and then Hilles City. Mera’s grave was in Duargana, where she died. I wanted to pay her a visit. I ran the sword through her with my own hands. The sensation of the sword running through her body still lingered in my mind. I can still recall the feeling of her hot blood spilling over my body. I admired Mommy Elizabeth, for she often killed and killed so many with a sword, yet she wasn’t disgusted or felt any pain as a consequence.
My story in this world started when I met Mommy Vyvyan in the forest, and then returned to Duargana. I saw my first home there then left the forest as a confused and eager man. I went to the glorious and dazzling human city, Hilles City. I left a mark at the cities. I met my Lucia at Duargana and quarrelled with Nier at Hilles City. At the time, I never imagined this day would ever come. I wondered if I’d be able to see my former self.
I forced myself to shut my eyes and wrapped myself up with the blank. My heart beat with excitement when I saw a living creature. It was as though it was asking me why I didn’t suck blood or, at least, kill the rabbit. No, I didn’t think it was my conscience, but purely because I could’ve taken it.
Duargana was as calm as always. The people of Duaragana were completely oblivious as to what almost happened to them. Fortunately, it never happened. I didn’t ride the White Deer King for the trip; the guards recognised me, nonetheless. The elven imperial capital was bustling as always, though. They were much quieter compared to humanity, however.
When I reached the border of the city door, the elven imperial guard expressed puzzlement: “Ah, Your Highness, why have you come back? Where is your White Deer King?”
I lingered for a moment out of confusion: “I didn’t leave Mom yesterday. How could I have been here? You must’ve been tricked. I never entered Duargana.”
The imperial guard was startled. His lips trembled, as he wanted to explain something, but I knew the culprit was definitely somebody around me. The White Deer King was extremely haughty; consequently, it wouldn’t just follow anybody. There was no question it followed one of the people around me to search for me. That was why I didn’t think that it was a big deal. After all, the people around me wouldn’t harm the elves.
“Sorry! Your Highness!! I am sorry! I am so, so sorry!! I… I saw the White Deer King… so I thought it was you and let it through. They left at night, though, so it does not appear there was a problem with them.”
“It’s all right. It’s not your fault. Normally speaking, only I would be able to ride the White Deer King, so I’m not sure who you saw, either. It was probably my wife looking for me, so it’s all right. I don’t plan to punish you or anything. Do you know where they went, though?”
“That… I do not know…”
I nodded: “All right.”
I then turned around and entered the city. The guard followed me. He sounded as if he was trying to make up for a mistake, since he sounded worried: “Your Highness, I am very sorry about that. I shall now go and arrange for your return.”
“No, there’s no need.”
“I don’t intend to stay here for too long. Queen Vyvyan hasn’t returned, has she? I’m not going to the Imperial Palace this time. I’m just going to stroll around in the city, buy some things and then leave.”
I only wanted to see Mera’s house. Mera didn’t have a corpse. Her head, which was just a skull at that point, was still hanging on the city wall. I had no clue where her body was. It was probably buried along with all the others who died that day.
“I see… In that case… Good luck,” responded the guard, looking as though he wanted to accompany me.
I didn’t mind if he followed me; I was fine with whatever. Actually, I might not be able to move around alone so easily. It had been a long time since I visited Duargana. I hadn’t been here since visiting Lucia during her pregnancy there.
To my surprise, I felt the stone road felt foreign. Elves were fans of change; but nonetheless, some stores had changed their appearance. I stood on the street and blankly surveyed the surroundings. It was a familiar, yet distant, feeling. I could apparently see a time travel phenomenon. I could seemingly see the charming sun, Lucia and Mera over there. I could also seemingly see Mera’s long black dress and gentle eyes. My former self laughed with joy at Duargana. Yet, I had an urge to tear up when I saw the place where I once cried, laugh and played at.
Do people feel so touched when they recall their past or is it just something that you feel when you’re about to die? I still have no idea. Nevertheless, I could feel the urge to cry.
I slowly rode atop my horse into the streets. I was unwilling to walk into the streets. I wasn’t willing to walk into the crowds. That was where my memories are stored. If I enter that place, I might never be able to leave. At least, I knew I’d waste a meaningless day in my memories and regrets.
Mera’s house was located by the city doors. The neat rows of small houses there were worn out, but there was Mera’s house, which maintained its mint red. I hadn’t been back in a long time, while Mommy Vyvyan didn’t care. Fortunately, the gardeners and maids still fulfilled their task of protecting her place. I hoped Mera could still see her house. I didn’t know where she was, but I hoped she could still see her red house she resided at for countless years.
I slowly walked over and took out a key that I had never touched and was somewhat mottled. I slowly unlocked the lock. The house was empty as it originally was. Not even Mera’s scent or the scent of her perfumes remained any longer. Facing the empty house, I quietly remarked, “I’m back, Mera”