Translated by: Miss Ruby
Proofread by: ShadowDog
* * *
“Maybe I should move.”
Yuri mumbled after hearing the central council’s announcement.
“Arachne, you’re going to leave the East?”
Siren was delighted.
Her decision to stay beside Yuri hadn’t swayed in the slightest but still, it seems she was inwardly worried after seeing the overall atmosphere in the East.
Siren’s eyes lit up and she clung to Yuri.
“Where should we go then? I prefer warmer places, to be honest, how about the South…”
Right then, a crow, Odin’s other self, flew in from the side and smacked Siren’s mouth with its wings.”
“Ack, what the hell is wrong with you!”
Siren’s eyes formed triangles as she glared at Odin.
“You tactless idiot…God, you can’t keep your mouth shut.”
In a way, Odin did that for Siren’s sake.
Because when Siren recommended the south for their next residence, the energy around Lakis began to leak murderous intent.
“Ehem, the, the best place for us to live in would be the West, our hometown, don’t you think?”
Odin uttered in a stiff and awkward tone as if he was reciting words from a book.
Seizing this chance, Lakis gave Yuri an innocent smile like he was putting on his sheepskin.
“There are many empty rooms in my castle.”
Only then did Siren realize something and quickly shut her mouth then pretended like she was earnestly cleaning her wings.
Yuri thought hard about it.
It looks like it was time to leave the East.
Anyway, she had always planned to save up and later move to a bigger house with a yard. She would have been fine if that house was in the East but she wasn’t exactly opposed to other regions.
Most of all, now that the East seemed to be taking measures to isolate the mutants, somehow, it felt a little off to keep pretending to be a normal human and live among normal people.
Moreover, there was no reason why she should go out of her way to do that just to stay in the East. And since she had unexpectedly gotten involved in several incidents while living in the East, there might actually be someone who was suspicious of her.
So for a peaceful life, it might be a good idea to also change her name at this point. In addition, there was one thing she was curious about while investigating several things related to this incident.
“Mr. Lakis, do you know where the ruin’s fragment was first found?”
Lakis tilted his head at Yuri’s question.
“Why do you ask?”
“Because I want to go there.”
Her investigation of the Alchemist Tower, seeing a new weapon that was similar to a gun at the praying festival, and so on and so forth. After experiencing all these things, she wanted to learn more about the ruin’s fragment.
After hearing what Yuri said, Lakis thought it over for a moment. And his calculations finished right away.
“Should we go now, then?”
Lakis stared at Yuri in such a natural manner that Yuri almost agreed in the heat of the moment.
“Right now is too early. I still have a few things I have to deal with.”
But soon, she shook her head.
Either way, she decided she was going to be moving so first of all, she had to sell her house.
Of course, Lakis was happy with Yuri’s decision.
* * *
The coffeehouse’s Gilbert was stunned when he heard Yuri’s words and repeated them back.
“Yeah, it just happened that way.”
“Oh my god, this makes me so sad, I’ve grown attached to you.”
He looked truly saddened by the news of Yuri’s move.
“I’ve always been waiting for you to come back to our store, Ms. Yuri; I know many of Ms. Yuri’s regulars will be sad too.”
When she heard that, there were a few faces that came to her mind.
She remembered Snow in particular…or rather Genos Sheldon, who often came to the coffeehouse with a stupid smile on his face. It had been quite a while since she had actually seen his face.
The last time she saw him was the day she investigated the Alchemist Tower, so it had been even longer since she last talked to him directly.
All the three male leads: Kalian, Damon, and Genos, seemed to be very busy due to the recent happenings in the East.
Most of all, this happened after Yuri had already quit the coffeehouse so there was no window of time for them to meet.
Still, they knew each other for some time so you could say that Yuri and those three were acquaintances…But as expected, they weren’t close enough that she could go find them to say her goodbyes in this situation.
They would probably think it was strange if Yuri suddenly visited them to announce that she was moving, right?
‘Now that I’m leaving, it feels like a bit of a shame.’
And so, Bastian was the only person that Yuri contacted in the end. After what happened with Dominic, the Crawford House did not accept any outside guests.
Of course, it might be different for Yuri since Bastian thought of her as an adopted daughter but after thinking about it, she eventually decided not to go to the Crawford mansion in person.
She couldn’t tell how much Bastian knew about what happened between Dominic and Kalian. But if Bastian chose to seclude himself in the house, there must be a reason for it.
So she felt that he wouldn’t be comforted by the words of a third party like her.
Hence, she left a letter instead.
It was awkward to write a handwritten letter because it had been so long, but she felt like she should at least do this for Bastian since he thought of her as his daughter.
“Ms. Yuri, are you really leaving tomorrow?”
She met Anne-Marie on the way back from mailing the letter.
Anne-Marie’s expression was gloomier than usual.
The fact that Yuri, her neighbor and friend next-door, was leaving the east made her feel very sad and regretful.
“I’ll come to visit you often.”
Yuri felt wistful too.
The time they spent together wasn’t that long, but she grew more attached to Anne-Marie and Hestia than she expected. Suddenly, her mind flew back to the day Anne-Marie moved here.
“Have you decided where you’re going to go?”
“I think I’ll go to the West.”
“Will you send me your address when you’re settled down?”
Yuri didn’t reply right away but hesitated.
Seeing that, Anne-Marie’s spirit seemed to deflate then she said.
“If you don’t want to then…”
“It’s not that, but I’m worried it might be dangerous for you, Ms. Anne-Marie.”
Anne-Marie seemed to think Yuri’s hesitation was because Yuri didn’t want to tell her where she was going. But Yuri immediately denied it.
“I can give you my address, but you must never come alone. The atmosphere over there is different from this place. I’ll give you this, so please let me know beforehand when you want to come to visit and if you want to tell me something, you can use it too.”
After pondering it over, Yuri gave Anne-Marie a mark made of her thread.
Anne-Marie’s eyes went wide when she saw the white butterfly fluttering in the air.
“What is this?”
“To use it, you…”
Yuri gave brief instructions on how to use the mark.
“So it goes to Ms. Yuri no matter where you are, that’s amazing!”
Anne-Marie’s face grew brighter than before as she held the butterfly preciously in her hands. She felt like she was connected to Yuri because of the mark so a lot of her sadness seemed to fade away.
Yuri stared at Anne-Marie’s face and said.
“Ms. Anne-Marie. Tomorrow, someone will come looking for you.”
“Yes. If they mention the name Tatiana, I think you should meet them.”
“By Tatiana, you mean Grandpa’s friend?”
Yuri didn’t only send a letter to Bastian today, she sent one to Tatiana as well. As Arachne, this time.
If things went as Yuri imagined, there would be a family reunion today.
Anne-Marie looked like she didn’t really understand but she nodded to say she got it.
“I won’t be sad since we’re not separating forever.”
Anne-Marie said energetically. Seeing her like this, Yuri replied in a subtle tone.
“Yeah. See you again soon.”
And so, they said their goodbyes while promising to meet each other again.
But this was not their last farewell.
* * *
“God, your face has really slimmed down. Are you eating well?”
That evening, Genos went to see Kalian.
Kalian was in the office that was previously used by Dominic. When he saw Genos open the door and come inside, Kalian put down the documents in his hand.
Genos felt strange when he saw Kalian’s appearance.
Kalian offered Genos a seat and said.
“One way or another. I know you’re busy too, sorry to call you out.”
“I might be busy but not as much as you.”
Like Genos said, Kalian’s face was weathered with fatigue. The two of them made some small talk asking about each other a bit.
“Genos, there is something I want to ask of you.”
Then Kalian brought up the reason why he called Genos.
“Since I can’t leave the East for a while.” (Kalian)
Genos’ reaction was calm as if he already expected this.
“Is this related to that stone?”
A strange stone that not only revives the alchemy in the East and the development of new weapons but also mutates human beings.
“There is one more person I’d like to accompany you though…”
“Head-nim, the guest you mentioned has arrived.”
Just as he spoke, an attendant knocked on the door from outside.
Once Kalian permitted their entry, the door opened.
And when Genos saw the person that walked inside, his face crumpled.
“Why are you showing up here?”
“You want to complain? Be the best alchemist in the East then.”
Damon frowned too and retorted at Genos’ words.
“Ah, no wonder I felt something was off before I came here.”
Damon didn’t hide his reluctance either and took a seat next to him.
The Crawfords and the Salvatores were in a temporary truce. Of course, there were some political elements mixed in.
“As you might have already guessed it, I want the two of you to go to the west together.”
Kalian glanced at the two of them and opened his mouth again.
“Alright, let me go into the details.”
* * *
The next day, Yuri and Lakis left the house as soon as dawn broke. Her fellow mutants later decided to come with them.
Odin and Leo didn’t want to leave because Anne-Marie and Hestia were here. But when Siren sharply said, ‘haven’t you two considered that your existence might bring harm to those sisters?’, they changed their minds and decided to go to the West then watch the situation develop.
Frankly, Siren scolded them because she was afraid Yuri might change her mind again but what she said was true in a way.
“Are you sad?”
Lakis said when Yuri turned around to look at the house after they left.
“I don’t know, I’m just remembering when I first moved here and when I first met you, Mr. Lakis.”
When Yuri said that, Lakis also turned to look back at the house where they had lived together for a few months.
Yuri looked at him and remembered the first time they met each other. The unbelievable situation that night when the novel’s villain collapsed in front of her house.
“Have you ever thought about this?”
Then she began to talk about something that sometimes ran through her mind ever since that day.
“That if you had taken just a few more steps before you collapsed, we would have never met.”
It was true. If Lakis had not come to her house, the person leaving the house with her right now wouldn’t be here.
However, Lakis looked at Yuri and raised a brow as if asking what she was talking about, then he said.
“No. Even if that happened, we would have met somehow.”
And in a very casual manner, he whispered the words that Yuri inwardly wanted to hear.
“There is no way I wouldn’t find you.”
As he said that, Lakis smiled. Yuri gazed at that smile that sparkled like dew in the morning.
Lakis took Yuri’s hand.
“Let’s go, Ms. Yuri.”
Yuri took a step forward as well, feeling the warmth against her hand.
The gray brick-house stood quietly behind them as though it was seeing them off under the white rays of the sun.
- The next chapter is the start of the epilogue. It spans three chapters (174-176). Chapter 177-181 are the side-stories then this novel is over. I’m actually a little sad.