Tatiana stretched out her hand to touch the thread hovering in her sight. The thread which looked thinner than silk thread tickled her wrinkled fingertips as it hung limply in the air. She tried pulling it to see but the thread did not break, instead it stretched like an elastic.
Tatiana narrowed her eyes.
Meanwhile, the crows were moving frantically and weaving through people. Upon taking a closer look, she noticed there was something small in the crow’s break.
Another explosion was heard a little further in the distance.
And right after the last crow flew away, the white threads that were filling up the hall began to retreat quietly like a dissipating fog. People shrank back in fear when the unknown object began to move again on its own.
However, Anne-Marie herself didn’t even know why but she didn’t feel like the strange thread or crows that appeared were dangerous. Most of all…
Anne-Marie felt like the strange threads, which were now disappearing in front of her, were somehow familiar. She suddenly recalled the man she ran into on the day of the festival. The man who gave her a feeling similar to Yuri. She had definitely seen this kind of thread from the man back then…
“Move the injured immediately!”
Right then, there was an urgent voice different from the sobbing and screaming in the area. It was Genos Sheldon.
After his brief talk with Tatiana in the exhibition room earlier, Genos went back to the east building where Kalian was. Then he was surprised by the sound of explosion and quickly went back to the west building where the chaos was unfolding.
And until now, he had been taking care of the injured and evacuating people. Even now, Genos was helping the guards to move the newly wounded, secure another exit route and evacuate people.
“Tatiana-nim?! You’re still here?”
Then he found Tatiana whom he greeted in the exhibition room earlier and hurriedly rushed over.
“Are you hurt?”
“I’m fine, you can keep doing what you’re doing.”
Even in this chaotic situation, Tatiana’s voice was calm. Like she said, she didn’t seem hurt at all.
Genos looked at the signs around her and realized that Tatiana had an alchemized protection device. Although alchemy was only revived in the East, Tatiana was a high-ranking northern noble and she was connected to the Crawford family. Hence, it was not strange for her to have an alchemized item.
“The ceilings collapsed, and the exit has been blocked. I would like to escort you myself but unfortunately, the situation does not allow for that. I’ll have another guard escort you instead. Please evacuate to the other entrance!”
After speaking urgently, Genos began to run off in a hurry. He was heading towards the place where the threads had just disappeared.
‘What in the world was that earlier?’
He ran while thinking about the crows and translucent threads that disappeared earlier like a dream. Most people didn’t seem to notice because it was so hectic, but those things had definitely taken some item in people’s hands and moved it outside.
Did a heretic really appear and was behind the explosion like they announced?
However, what Genos saw just now did not give him an ominous feeling. Rather it…
But Genos’s throats were pushed away by the thunderous roar coming from ahead.
“Don’t lose him!”
He hurried over to where the loud noise came from.
* * *
‘I think we’ve gotten rid of all of them.’
The moment she was surrounded by the guards who arrived late to help Kalian, Yuri realized that they were done removing the explosives. Perhaps Odin realized the same thing as their eyes met for a moment.
“It’s a heretic. Arrest him immediately!”
The late arriving guards seemed to feel suspicious when they saw Yuri’s appearance. Or maybe they thought she was definitely the culprit since Kalian was chasing after her. Either ways, while Kalian paused for a moment after hearing what Yuri said earlier, they rushed in at once to capture her.
“Wait…! Don’t kill him, take him alive!”
Kalian shouted at the guards as they moved.
From the looks of things, even if Yuri were to explain that she was removing not installing explosives till her mouth was sore, it would still not get through. In addition, she wasn’t necessarily eager to prove her innocence.
And so, Yuri shot out threads from her fingertips without saying a word.
Every direction was blocked with people wielding weapons and there didn’t seem to be any space for her to escape.
‘Well, I can make one.’
Quickly sensing what she wanted to do, Odin called his crows to block people’s view and at the same time, Yuri unleashed her spider webs. As the wall broke down, a cloud of dust rose in the air. And when crows and spiderwebs were added to that, the surroundings became more of a mess.
“Stop him! Don’t give him a chance to escape!”
But a while later, after the dust settled, there was no one in their line of sight. The person in a suspicious helmet whom they were trying to catch had disappeared from the spot without a trace.
Instead, in the place where Yuri stood, there was a hole only big enough for one person to escape through.
Kalian ordered his men.
“Go after him! Like I instructed before, just act like you are chasing after him and increase the distance. After which, I will pursue.”
“Yes, Lord Crawford!”
Several guards hurried upstairs like Kalian ordered. For some reason, they didn’t seem to be actively pursuing after Yuri disappeared.
Right then, Genos appeared at the end of the hallway. He hurried over to Kalian’s side then he looked around the area which was a mess. After which, Genos quickly asked Kalian.
“What the heck happened?”
“I found a heretic who was acting suspicious and for now, I put a tracker on them.”
Kalian had let the heretic go on purpose. He brought alchemized trackers today just in case and thankfully, they were useful.
“More importantly, it’s dangerous here so you should hurry up and leave too.”
Kalian ordered the other guards to search for the remaining explosives and help transport the wounded then he quickly turned back.
‘The explosions have stopped.’
The loud explosions which have been ringing in his ear for a while now had stopped at some point.
Kalian’s brows furrowed as he realized that the explosions stopped right after the heretic disappeared. The tracker was a small alchemized item made into a pair and one was already attached.
Of course, the other pair was in Kalian’s hands and when he checked the signal, he saw that the tracker on the spider-web-using heretic was moving to the next building just outside the exhibition ground.
“The heretic you found is the one who used those strange threads and crows, right? Are they really the culprit?”
“That’s something I’ll find out after I catch them.”
Genos was following behind Kalian. Somehow, he didn’t feel like that person was the culprit so he brought it up but Kalian was firm. At that, Genos thought that Kalian was not exactly wrong, so he kept his mouth shut for now.
Suddenly, Genos found a thin thread stuck to Kalian’s shirt. His hand subconscious reached forward.
The very moment Genos’s finger touched the thread. A scene consisting of a dark-haired woman flashed through his eyes.
Genos’ eyes widened with shock.
Realizing that the steps behind him had slowed down, Kalian turned around to look at Genos and asked.
“No…It’s nothing. Let’s keep moving.”
Genos replied evasively and began following Kalian again.
Kalian felt something was strange, but the situation didn’t give him much time to relax so he just let it pass.
He didn’t know that behind him, Genos’ face remained stiff even after a good while.
* * *
Yuri burrowed through the ceiling till she was at the roof outside. She decided the destruction of property was paid off with the reduction in the loss of lives.
As she stepped onto the roof, she was immediately greeted by intense sunlight and a lukewarm breeze. Outside, she could see the remains of the explosives which were bursting through the air earlier and they sparkled as they were scattered and swept away by the wind. They reflected the sunlight making the weather seem even more sunny.
“They’re coming after you, Arachne!”
Even if Odin didn’t say so, Yuri knew there were people chasing them. However, she was confident about evading them, so she wasn’t nervous in the slightest.
Yuri dashed across the roof and moved to the next building. She wanted to make sure Anne-Marie and Hestia were safe but if she went back now, Kalian would probably figure out her identity because of her clothes.
Yuri crossed several buildings and jumped into an alley. And when she was sure she was a reasonable distance from her pursuers, she took off the helmet covering her head.
Her impaired vision brightened up immediately.
Now that she thought about it, she had tied up her long hair, but it had peeked out under the helmet, so she began to wonder if Kalian has noticed it. However, the helmet had a black mane, so she didn’t think it was that noticeable.
“Ugh, those idiots…! Even after I said we’re not the culprits so many times, he couldn’t understand a word! Thanking us is the least they should do. This is why I said humans don’t need our help!”
Odin, who was still in Yuri’s pocked, poked his head out and screamed with all his anger.
Yuri took one look back at the place she had just left. Even in the alley, she could the towering building in the distance.
Then suddenly, she noticed some movement coming after her from not too far away. Yuri threw the helmet in her hands far away to cause a distraction then she ran through the alley.
Odin cursed the people chasing them, calling them uselessly persistent pricks. And that very moment, Yuri discovered a sparkling gold hair in the distance.
Her red eyes went wide.
*Most of the time when they refer to Yuri as ‘him’, there is no gender mentioned. However, I’m pretty sure Kalian thinks it’s a ‘he’ because of Odin so I stuck with that.