Chapter 45 - Eyelids (18)

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She headed into a room for a moment, then came back out with a large piece of cloth and threw it at me.

“There’s going to be a room in the back with flowing water. Of course, I personally like your current state as well….. but that would make me a failure as your host.”

“A room with…. flowing water?”

“Yes, the salon was built so that the river flowing northwest passes under here. Due to circumstances, we do business in the outer areas, but that place isn’t really the nicest place to be in, is it?”

She’s telling me to go get cleaned up.

[According to the knowledge you have, vessel, t-this is….!]

Unlike the parasite, who started to go crazy again, my heart calmed down and started to go crazy in a different way. Water. Water that’s coming straight from the Tower of Mages. I want to experience it. I want to know how it feels….!

Professor started straight into the inner parts of the salon. He didn’t need directions to know where it was. He could feel it instinctively. It was here. This was where the water was.

Thunk!

When he opened the fancy wooden door, a room with elegant decorations greeted him. Modern sculptures. Small glass vials with unknown liquids. A large white bathtub. And…..

Swshhhhhh.

It was true. Inside the bathroom was a flowing river.

“I-I can’t take this.”

[Uh…. Vessel? Your consciousness is altering in a very complicated way….?]

“I need to go in! I need tooooo! Yeeeeeeaaaaah!”

Splash!

A wild Professor jumped straight into the river’s water. The water splashed everywhere as if a large boulder had fallen into the water. Professor’s body slowly sank into the water, letting it engulf him.

‘Ahhhh….everything’s melting away….all worry, anxiety, anguish… they’re all fading away….’

The image of the beautiful woman and the senses of her touch all washed away with the river’s current. This…. yes. It felt like that. When he returned from a daunting mission, the feeling when he threw off his uniform and lunged onto the bed.

“It’s water. Water….water always knows the answer….”

And with the feeling of the water swirling around him, Professor completely let go of his ability to think. He knew Rakshasha was waiting for him outside and that this was impolite of him, but he couldn’t help it.

It was an hour later when Professor came back to his senses and got out of the water.


After the much-enjoyed bath, he opened the door to see a set of neatly folded clothes in front of it.

A large cape, sturdy leather pants that fit him—that he doesn’t know how they got a hold of—and a large shirt that’s a little tattered but still wearable. It was obvious they were giving him special treatment.

After putting on the clothes, he was about to walk into the salon but instead hid behind the counter to scan the situation. Since he was a wanted criminal in this city, there would be a problem if a customer happened to recognize him.

Thankfully, the windows to the quiet and luxurious salon were all covered with thick curtains, and there weren’t any customers in the shop.

Rakshasha was seated at a large table alone, smoking what seemed to be a hookah.

“You don’t need to worry about getting captured. I don’t open on days when I have a guild client.”

She extended her hand and invited me to the seat across from her.

Hwooo.

The smoke from the hookah circled the two people, then dissipated.

“Now then, should we talk about the request you have?”


Rakshasha had the hobby of collecting valuable and rare objects.

Things that were difficult to find, with only a few existing in the world. The feeling she got when objects like those came into her hands was one of the few joys in her otherwise boring life.

So when she saw this big man getting dragged in by her guild members, she was interested for a moment. A human that people could mistake for a mutant. The man who knew the guild’s secret code.

‘Should I….test the waters?’

She wasn’t interested in the matters of the guild, but she decided this man was interesting enough to handle for a little longer.

And the following question. When she saw the man’s unfocused eyes from the drugs and his inability to resist her seduction, her interest became disappointment.

‘Just a normal man that had a bad experience with mages.’

Just as she was about to finish the interrogation and hand him over to the guild members, she saw it. Through the reflection on her blade, she could see that he was staring directly into her eyes.

’….He’s acting?’

At that moment, she did not hesitate to slit the man’s throat. It could have been interesting, but it was also dangerous. She was still enjoying her life here, and she did not want her secretive play to end just yet.

With a little bit of regret, she said her farewells to the corpse and turned around when she heard the dead man’s voice once more.

Cough! Didn’t you say a few minutes ago? A relationship is when you get to know each other.”

She saw it. The airway and artery she cut were reattached as if going back in time. The hand that got cut from the Elder Spider’s string was reattached just by putting it back in its spot.

She couldn’t believe it. Weren’t the bodies of the immortals described to be like this in the stories?

‘Rare….human…!’

Her calm heart beat a happy rhythm.


She tried to maintain a delicate relationship with the man called Professor.

‘A man with a request. I can’t be too cooperative, but not too oppressive either……’

Thankfully, the man knew how to make a deal. Pretending she cared about the lives of her guild members, she kept a natural distance from him while establishing their relationship.

After that, everything went according to her pace.

‘His physical attributes are impressive, but he’s also remarkably adept at using his head. But…..he’s weak with women. Interesting.’

She thought the man shivering at her every touch was a little cute. After edging him on, she was planning to slowly lure out the man’s secrets, but…….

“Mister Professor?? Would you like a cup of te—”

“Ah, let’s just talk business. I don’t like tea that much.”

“T-Then maybe some tea cakes?”

Clink!

Munch, munch, munch!

“Hmm, that’s good. Are you satisfied now? There isn’t much time, so let’s get straight to the point now.”

This man, after that hour-long bath, suddenly became a complete wall.

‘That’s weird. He was already within my grasp. All he did in the bath was….stay submerged in the water for an hour.’

There was no action, no sign of magic.

“T-Then what exactly are the details of your request…?”

“Oh, it’s nothing that major. Do you know what hijacking is?”

The man stared at the empty tea cake plate as he continued to talk, as if what he was saying was not really that major.

“Hmm. I guess it’s towerjacking in this case. I’m thinking of holding the entire Tower of Mages hostage.”

“….Excuse me?”

This man—he was living in a world much further away than she could have ever imagined.


‘The wind is wind. And water is the best.’

Professor’s post-bath mind as he sat in front of Rakshasha was the definition of pure tranquility.

‘How could you be blinded merely by the pleasures of a woman’s body, Professor? One day, I will repent in the deep blue waters of the vast oceans for the sins I have committed today.

[T-This is unbelievable….! Even the deepest parts of his consciousness are filled with water…..vessel, who put you through this terrible hypnotization?!]

‘Poor parasite. You, with only your consciousness left, will never know the comforting feeling of the water. I feel bad for you, parasite.’

Professor looked at Rakshasha, who was right in front of him. Her actions seduced men even when she didn’t mean to. Her small face contained a cute yet mature aura. Smooth, silky hair. And a perfect body that seemed like God invested an extra week of time to sculpt it. Yes. This woman was extremely beautiful. She could take the heart of any man that sets their eyes on her.

But Professor had already let those foolish thoughts wash away with the river’s current. The only things left in his mind concerned the task he must finish and the plan to make it happen.

At least until the water in his hair dried out, this state of mind would continue.

“I’m thinking of taking over the entire Tower of Mages. Can you help me with that?”

He could see Rakshasha’s eyes widen from the description of Professor’s request. It was only natural. Even he thought it sounded a little ridiculous. There was an obvious limit to what a single person could do to a Tower of Mages, which powered entire cities.

“That’s quite a……shocking request. I’m not sure you know since you just came here, but it’s not easy to live in this city while defying the Tower of Mages.”

“Of course I do. I hadn’t even been here for a day, but I could tell. Transportation within the city, specialty products of the city, housing, finances, and more—the tower is in charge of this entire city. Fortunately for you, I’m a reasonable person, so I won’t ask for anything overbearing.”

Professor looked around to find something to write with but just decided to use the tea Rakshasha provided to draw on the table. He drew a circle in the middle, representing the tower, and drew the rough topography of Tobrune by placing dots on the four sides of the city.

“One is to make a commotion on the southern side of the city. It doesn’t matter what type, but I would prefer it to be a big one. At least…enough to attract the knights in the lord’s castle.”

Rakshasha frowned and expressed her thoughts on Professor’s plan.

“Hm….that’s not an easy request. It needs to be a commotion that puts the entire city at risk to make the knights move.”

“I don’t think it’ll be that hard. The people of Rodrick are all on edge these days. You could just go around saying, ‘The mutes are attacking!’ and that would be enough.”

“Did you know that if you get caught making that big of a claim, you could get arrested for treason?”

Rakshasha seemed to hesitate for a moment but, in the end, nodded in agreement.

“It won’t be that simple, but it seems possible. There just happens to be a weird man going around town since yesterday spreading a rumor about a crimson mute….”

Her voice trailed off. Reddish skin. Regeneration speed that could not be called human. Odd vibes.

Professor smiled and waved at her as she stared.

“True?”

“False. You already seemed to know everything that happened in the prison. You heard the mage. I’m human.”

“But you look exactly like what the rumors say.”

“Because I’m the one who spread it.”

That made her eyes widen once again. That’s cute.

He did take the long route, but the plan itself wasn’t exactly that complicated. Use the thief guild to lure the city’s defenses to the south.

The mages would try to stay safe if rumors about the crimson mute spread. They would stay in the safest place in the city for mages—the Tower of Mages. The two dangerous factors were the mages and knights. With this plan, the location of the two factors would be certain and also separated. It would also block off external help.

“And then, after I neutralize the Tower of Mages, you and your guild members can come in and steal the artifacts, magic textbooks, money, basically everything valuable, and leave. I believe that should be enough compensation for the request.”

Rakshasha tried to visualize Professor’s plan in her head. No matter how she saw it, this plan seemed ridiculous.

Let’s say everything worked out. She didn’t know what kind of power this man had, but let’s say he was able to successfully neutralize all of the mages in that tower. The Tower of Mages was in the middle of the city.

There was a limit to how long they could keep the knights busy, and if there was that much commotion happening at the Tower of Mages, the soldiers would most likely go there. To neutralize the tower and steal the valuables in that short amount of time? It was realistically impossible.

‘But….it sounds fun.’

Her heart, which had always beat at a steady pace, started to beat faster. To take off the ugly mask of the tower in this disgustingly fake city. It sounded like a story of a noble hero’s adventures.

Even knowing that this plan was impossible, she wanted to hear more about it.

“Why don’t we talk about the details later? First, how are you planning to neutralize the Tower of Mages?”

Professor’s small grin widened at Rakshasha’s question. He was waiting for her to ask this. He had been tempted to tell her this part for a while now.

“Rakshasha, was it? Do you happen to know something called….a ‘Void Stone’?

When those words left Professor’s mouth, Rakshasha’s expression twisted into a grimace.

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