Chapter 74:


The Consequence of Saving the World

We may be seated across each other on comfortable sofas, looking at each other from eye level, but reality couldn’t be more different.

It felt as if she was perched on top of a tower of unfathomable heights, looking down at me in complete dominance. Despite the lies and falsehoods that the priestess was perpetuating, she had complete belief in her ideals, far beyond the reaches of any drops of doubt.

There was no hesitation in her eyes. The crime she just confessed to, the betrayal that she had in mind towards her superiors—it was the absolute faith in herself and her god that made her such a fearsome individual.

On the other hand, I’ve never felt smaller in my life.

What did I believe in?

What was I fighting for?

Peace? To make people happy?

To bury my mother? To escape the unfair responsibility on my shoulders?

At the end of the day, what difference was I going to make?

The priestess…Timon…

They all have fully embraced the roles that they were going to play. Whether they were a real Hero who was living a life of glamour or a fake miracle worker who appeased the masses, they could walk with their chests held high.

Yet, here I sat, slumped on this couch, trapped in the priestess’ words and my own self-doubts.

Unable to leave, unable to speak.

Unable to do anything.

It was then that I felt a hand on my shoulder.

Thanks Sereya, but what were we going to do? I was glad to see her reassuring smile and the gentleness in her touch, but even with your support, what could we accomplish?

The priestess was using my mum as both a prize and a bargaining chip. I needed her back, but I had no clue how to convince her.

Unable to use her strength for this negotiation, what could she possibly do?

“Excuse me,” she told the priestess with an empty look on her face, devoid of the rage she exhibited moments before, “but may I use the restroom?”


The priestess gave a warm smile, completely opposite from the cold glare she was wearing.

“By all means, feel free. It’s down the corridor behind me, the door on the left.”

“Evan, I’m worried that I might take a while. If you need to go, I think you should go first.”

Wait…that’s exactly it!

Sereya, you airheaded genius!

“Thanks, I’ll be back in a bit. Excuse me, Priestess Imelda,” I muttered as I got off my seat.

It may not have done anything for the negotiation, but it offered me something that I desperately needed.

My own space to think.

Sereya knew that the pressure the priestess was exuding was clouding my thoughts. When faced with an insurmountable challenge, the best course of action was to take a break.

For me, that came in the form of the priestess’ fancy-looking toilet.

It definitely wasn’t the alien-looking porcelain potty that was in Ordis’s place, but it was still miles better than doing business at a ditch near the farm.

No matter, I finally felt the weight lifted off my shoulders. Sure, there was still a huge burden dangling on top of my head, but I could finally breathe.

“Man, Evan, you look a mess, you know that?”

I teased the person looking at me from the other side of the mirror. His unkempt hair was seriously due for a trip to the barbershop.

While getting my hair done would probably boost my confidence, that had to be at the bottom of the pecking order of things to do.

However, just the thought of me having my old hairstyle back really did boost my confidence. Projecting my ideal look onto the mirror, I felt better about myself.

Maybe I wasn’t as suave as I was before Hanasuke took over, but I looked fine—fine enough to have Sereya swooning over me. If anything, I had my mum to thank for passing down her features to me.

I may have doubts, but if I needed a reason to get mum back, it’s that.

So what if it isn’t for a “good” cause? So what if I’m running away from my responsibility as Hero?

I’m the eldest son. If I wanted to face Eveline, I had to do this. I had no control over what Hanasuke did, but I lived a fulfilling life with mum!

To that end, I’ll do whatever it takes to get her back.

I looked at the person in the mirror once more.

That person wasn’t Hanasuke Ryojima, the Hero.

It was Evansmith Mattheld, son of Farhana Constantine.

And it was time to fight for myself and what I believe in.

I left the toilet without relieving myself. I had nothing to let out, after all. Just needed the quiet time and head space.

When I returned to the living room, both Sereya and the priestess were looking at me. I could tell that there was an awkward silence the whole time. However, both of them wore poker faces, opting not to reveal their discomfort.

I sat back down, taking a more comfortable sitting position befitting that of the country kid that I was.

“Hey Priestess, I thought about it, and maybe we could actually work together.”

“Oh? And what benefit would that provide me, Mr. Hero?”

Good. It seemed she knew that I was being completely true to myself. She was also showing her true nature to me, that of a self-serving opportunist.

“In exchange for my mother’s body, I’ll get rid of the poverty issue behind the church.”

“Ah I see. Sadly, it’s not a proble—”

“You’ll claim all the credit for it. It will be done in the name of Priestess Imelda…and Lord Evan, of course.”

With a serpent-like gaze, her eyes showed that I was speaking her language. For once, I finally felt like I was clawing my way up in this conversation.

She looked down at her tea for a short while. Was she like me, looking at her own reflection for inspiration? Regardless, she looked back up to me with another question.

“And why exactly should I believe that you, an empty Vessel, would be able to achieve something that the Baron and the Evanists have been trying to do for so long?”

“Because I too, am Breven-born. I spent my entire life here long before I was a Hero or any of you were here. And with my powerful allies like Sereya and Timon the Musician, I’m certain I have the muscle and influence to turn my poverty-stricken brethren into contributing members of society. I’ll give them jobs and proper houses. Who knows? Maybe many more people will be converted to your faith?”

“Sorry for cutting in, but Evan—you sure you could do that?” Sereya asked with concern written all over.

“With your help, of course. I’m sure that it aligns with your goals as a Hero?”

“Well, yeah, but…”

“Very well,” the priestess spoke with a smile, “I suppose the assistance of a third party working under this Temple would advance my own goals. I’ll provide you with the manpower you need, but I expect to see them out of Old Breven in a month’s time.”

“In exchange, you’ll give my mother’s body back exactly the way it is?”

“I don’t think we can trust her,” Sereya warned.

“Don’t then. I climbed my way up this organisation without trusting anyone. But a deal’s a deal, and I’d much rather have the Holy Corpse belong to a member of family instead of my superiors.”

“Good. It’s a pleasure working with you, Priestess Imelda.”

“Likewise, Evansmith Mattheld.”

As we shook hands from across the table, I was slightly unnerved by how unnaturally cold her hands are. It felt like I was touching a corpse.

“Unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to see you out as I need to prepare for the next service.”

“No worries. All the best for your ‘miracle work’, yeah.”

As we got up from our seats, Sereya hesitantly followed. I understood her concerns. This was a risky gamble after all.

While I do have something in mind, right now, I just want to head back and relax. The fact that I was able to make something out of this disastrous situation was a miracle in and of itself.

If there’s one lesson I learned today, it’s that if I don’t want to be caught lying, I need to be a better liar.

Priestess Imelda…she may be a normal person like me, but she was incredibly dangerous. She definitely could not be trusted, but I’d much rather someone like her leading a country than a fat, incompetent noble sitting around doing nothing.

“How are you feeling?”

As we made our way out of the door, Sereya showed her concern for me.

“Tired. I just went through every single emotion known to man just now. I wanna go home and rest.”

“Yeah, you can share with me the details of your plan some other time. Let’s go home.”


Hi everyone, I initially thought of putting this in the comments, but I feel that it'll be more apt to put it here for visibility and importance.

First off, sorry for disappearing for about a month. It was mainly due to irl work, to which I've just submitted my resignation. I have more time (and brain power) to work on writing, so I'll be posting as per the schedule on my novel's page.

I may not be as active as I once was in Discord and in the community, but I hope to finish this volume first. I can't say for certain how my schedule will be in my new job (will be starting in September), but ideally I'll have more time to myself and for writing. 

Thanks for reading The Consequence of Saving the World. Sorry for not posting anything for a while. I'll make up for it by delivering an exciting conclusion to volume 3, so do look forward to it! 

To the contestants, all the best! Less than a month to go!

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