Add opened his eyes and realized that his face was touching the ground. Sensation on his cheek felt cold and chilling.
“This place is……”
A sinking voice, Add tried to get up while looking around but groaned from pain. His arms hurt as if they were getting torn apart.
Add’s pupils shook narrowly as he looked down at his arms dripping with blood.
He didn’t know where this place was. But he knew what had just happened.
The devil that ruined the world and had been ridiculing everything was…..
Add suppressed himself from screaming. He was filled with emotion of wanting to scream but even that felt like a waste of time. In a frantic attempt to suppress the scream, fear, pain and cry, he bit down on his lower lips so hard to the point where blood started dripping down.
Add finally managed to suppress his emotions after his chin became all bloody. Of course, that didn’t mean he was still sane. How does it make sense to stay sane after he left everyone to die by his future self, that devil, and escaped by himself?
“Exactly how am I…….?
No matter how much he agonized, how much he suppressed his feelings and thought, he still couldn’t figure out how things turned out like this. How was it that him from the future was the main culprit behind everything?
Add kept thinking despite the burning pain in his arms but he still couldn’t get any answer.
One thing he was sure of now was the reason for his 20 million failures. What stood in his way wasn’t something vague like destiny or some freakish coincidence.
He couldn’t achieve his dearest wish because Add from the future, the devil was standing in his way.
“I don’t get it. I don’t get it at all. But….”
Add’s mouth was forming a twisted smile. This wasn’t the time to smile but he couldn’t bear without smiling.
He ran away by himself leaving all of his comrades behind. So what?
This wasn’t even the first time. He already rewound time many times to save Eve, and to prevent others from dying. He must have rewound much more in those times that he couldn’t remember.
He didn’t have even a speck of wish to sentimentalize and cry about it now. He had to move forward. This wasn’t the time to look back at the emotion filling up his heart.
“There’s a new enemy to defeat.”
Yes, he actually felt more at ease after thinking this. He found out the cause of the problem so all he had to do now was to research then figure out a solution.
Add collected his heart then carefully got up from the floor. It was agonizing due to the severe pain as if his arms were being shattered.
“Let’s heal up first…..then come up with a plan.”
It wasn’t that his wounds healed automatically by time traveling. Add tried to take out a potion from his belt pouch but sighed. All of his potions were shattered from him blocking D’s attack.
Well, it was a shockwave even Dynamos couldn’t withstand. It didn’t make sense to expect that potions could have withstood it. Add tried to take off his jacket to stop the bleeding then frowned from realizing a strange sensation.
There was a foreign object inside his clothing.
He carefully moved his hand to take it out. It was a white fox. It had the appearance of a small human but it had fox ears on its head and fox tails on its bottom. It must have been hanging on to insides of Add’s clothing.
“…..What is this?”
Unlike his mouth that reacted dumfounded, Add’s clever brain came up with a conclusion instantly.
Eun came into the space-time wormhole together with him in this time travel. But he couldn’t see Eun anywhere even though he looked around.
They haven’t time traveled together before so he couldn’t be sure yet. But…..
“Could this be?”
It was bit heavy to keep carrying in his hand. This small fox presumed to be Eun didn’t show any signs of waking up even though Add put her down on the floor.
She was breathing lightly and looked to be sound asleep.
He didn’t have an inch of good feelings towards Eun but this wasn’t the time to nitpick about that. Add looked around his surroundings to estimate to what time he time traveled.
This was a room composed of red bricks. There were numerous books on the bookshelf at the side and various suspicious looking potions on the desk.
“I’ve never seen anything like this before.”
Time travels so far had been going back to the point where Add wanted. But he couldn’t figure out when and where he arrived now because Eun was the one who activated it this time.
It would be simple if he could ask Eun, but she was sound asleep and didn’t seem like waking up any time soon. Add gave up looking around the room and was trying to exit….. When the door suddenly opened and someone entered.
It was Eve.
Eve entered the room and saw Add. She snapped coldly.
“I don’t get why you didn’t open the door when you were in the room. Just how long are you going to make me wait?”
“Was your experiment this time sewing up your own mouth?”
Add stared at her blankly then quickly turned his head away to avoid her gaze. Looking at Eve made something surge up from his heart and he couldn’t stand it. He couldn’t make any conclusions about this complicated feeling…… But one thing he was sure of was relief.
He came back in time. He was given another chance to save Eve, the other El Search Party members.
Add ignored the tingling sensation on the tip of his nose as he replied calmly as possible.
“Kukukuk….. You’re the same as ever.”
“I don’t need any incomprehensible answers. Let me simply state my business. Why did you call for me, Add?”
I wonder why? I want to know too. Add swallowed these words as he stole a look at Eve. He didn’t know where this place was and Eve’s attires were also ones that he had never seen.
Add was about to answer appropriately when Eve frowned.
“What kind of ruckus were you causing for your arms to end up like that?”
“……It was nothing. I’m going to heal it first so wait.”
Eve waved her head then snapped her finger.
“Humans are so inconvenient. Wait a moment. Oberon!”
Soon as Eve shouted, a dimension gate opened beside her and a Nasod that Add had never seen before appeared. And…..Add’s eyes widened in shock from seeing this.
No way, Eve had this kind of ability? Eve didn’t seem concerned by Add’s shocked reaction as she made a chin gesture to order Oberon, the Nasod she summoned.
“Heal that man’s arm. He must have gotten hurt from doing strange experiments again. How pitiful.”
Why was the tone of Eve’s voice strangely unfriendly? Of course, Add had done things to get on Eve’s nerves many times but this had a bizarrely different nuance.
Anyways, when Oberon, the Nasod Eve summoned slowly approached him, Add unintentionally ended up stepping back.
He would have normally burned up with his desire for research but he was injured right now. Most of his Dynamos were broken, Eve was acting bizarrely cold and she was even nonchalantly performing abilities he had never seen before.
It was obvious for him to get alerted.
‘I knew she could call upon weapons through dimension gates, but can she even summon advanced Nasods like that?’
When Add backed off to avoid Oberon, Eve who was looking from the back with her arms crossed sighed reluctantly.
“I don’t get why you’re dragging this on longer than it should. Ophelia!”
Dimension gate opened upon Eve’s call and a female type Nasod appeared this time. Now Add wasn’t just surprised, he was about to faint. Eve right now didn’t seem burdened at all from summoning two entire advanced Nasods through a dimension gate.
Eve sitting on her Nasod gears pompously ordered Oberon and Ophelia.
“Treat that man appropriately then make him reveal why he called for me. It doesn’t matter if you do it by force.”
Add’s desperate call must have worked because Ophelia and Oberon stopped then looked back at Eve. Eve who was looking while resting her chin on her hand replied stiffly.
“Are you going to say something useless again?”
“……Where’s everyone else?”
Eve had strangely changed and he couldn’t tell what time period this was. It was the first time something like this had happened.
Something was strange. Things had changed too much differently than time travels up till now.
“Elsword, Chung and Ara are staying at the lodge. Rena and Elesis when to scout the surrou……”
Add raised his voice. Eve frowned slightly as if she was offended. But Add couldn’t believe the name he just heard.
“……..Did you even forget our comrade’s name?”
Add blinked blankly. Elesis isn’t their enemy?
Not only that, judging by Eve’s tone, she was speaking about Elesis very familiarly, even calling her comrade.
“Strange, this is strange……”
Add murmured nervously as he stroked his eye patch.
It was totally unfamiliar. Time travels up till now had indeed been a march of suffering to save the others, but it wasn’t something this unfamiliar.
He felt like a sailor who met a storm and had been drifting all this time with broken sails and oars……but then suddenly came upon an uninhabited island.
The environment had changed too much.
“Could this be…..?”
“Add, I won’t forgive you if this is an insignificant joke.”
Eve scolded coldly. Add shook his head frantically to deny.
“I’m not joking! I’m organizing my thoughts so wait, wait just a bit more.”
Fact that Add was being serious must have been conveyed because Eve made Ophelia and Oberon back out with a hand gesture. Add nervously looked down at his feet then looked around the room again seeking for an answer.
After time traveling, Eve now had a different atmosphere than before, and a different ability. Not just that, Elesis had all of a sudden become their ally, their comrade.
……Of course, it was better than her being an enemy. Having her as an ally will help them immensely. But the uneasiness from this unfamiliar situation was much larger than the gladness.
It felt like he had been sailing through a vast ocean called time relying on just one compass, but that compass had broke.
“Could this be…..a time that I can’t remember?”
Did he return to one of the 20 million times that he couldn’t remember? But he couldn’t understand how these kinds of variables could be created.
Add was looking around the room again anxiously but was unable to find anything to lay his eyes upon. But then his eyes suddenly widened.
It’s all red.
He saw buildings outside the window. Add suppressed a groan from the appearances and color of the buildings. If Eve’s attire and change in ability was a suspicion, this was a certainty.
“Where….. is this place, Eve?”
“Did you call for me to mock me with such trivial words?”
“…….Please, answer me properly.”
He unconsciously said the word please. Seeing Add blankly look outside the window while asking desperately, Eve sighed then narrowed her eyes.
As if she was reluctantly going to play along.
“This is Lanox.”
Name he had never heard before, scenery he had never seen before.
This made it certain.
This was a time that Add didn’t know about.