"It's been a while, El," Julia said.
'Elian' merely nodded, emitting a soft "Hm," and then fell into silence.
Julia let out a sigh of frustration, approached the bed before expressing her desire, "I want to talk to Elian."
"No," he replied with a cold demeanor.
"Why is that?" she retorted, her frown deepening.
"He hasn't woken up yet," he answered matter-of-factly.
Julia was taken aback by this response. It made no sense, but she knew that the person in front of her wouldn't bother lying. She would have to investigate this later. Her immediate concern was Elian.
"What happened to Elian?" she asked, her worry evident.
lightsnοvεl"He attempted a new experiment, and it went badly." he stated flatly.
Julia couldn't contain her anger this time. First, she had lost her husband, and now her son, who had never caused any real problems, had almost disabled himself with an experiment. On top of that, nobody seemed willing to provide her with the full story. She locked eyes with 'Elian' and voiced her frustration.
"So, for you, almost becoming blind is just 'bad'? For you, nearly suffering intellectual impairment is just... 'bad'? Are you perhaps trying to test my limits?"
Indeed, overusing one's Gift, as Elian had done, came with consequences. First, his eyes had been completely destroyed by his reckless act. Lys, who had witnessed Julia's miraculous healing, didn't understand the gravity of the situation. Julia had spent several minutes healing his eyes, an extraordinary feat even for her, as she had not just healed them but effectively brought them back to life. When Julia had arrived at the scene, Elian was already blind, and if not for her godly healing techniques, nothing could have saved his vision. But that wasn't the worst part. Elian's reckless stunt had depleted his mental energy, a perilous occurrence. Mental energy depletion, like mana depletion, left severe consequences. In Elian's case, had Julia not arrived quickly, his brain would have been irreparably damaged, reducing him to a state of intellectual disability or simply a complete retard.
After contemplating how she had almost lost her son just days after the loss of the only love of her life, and all for the sake of a mere experiment, Julia's emotions overwhelmed her. Tears welled up in her eyes, and she seized 'Elian' by the collar.
"Why? Why did you let him do that? Didn't you swear to protect him?" Her voice quivered with sobs.
For the first time during their conversation, 'Elian's' expression changed. Regret, remorse, and guilt were etched on his young face.
"I... didn't know it was going to be so bad," he admitted, his voice trembling.
Indeed, in the heat of the moment, Elian had failed to consider the severe risks associated with his reckless experiment. While he was aware of mental energy depletion and had carefully monitored his energy levels while traversing the runes world, his fascination with what he had discovered in the quantum runes had led him to squander his energy recklessly, resulting in the dire situation.
Meanwhile, 'Elian' had been keeping a watchful eye on Elian's activities and surroundings. When he noticed Elian's mental energy plummeting, he attempted to warn him to stop. However, Elian had been too engrossed inhis exploration to heed the warnings. 'Elian' could have forcibly intervened by deactivating Elian's Gift, but he had chosen not to deprive Elian of this moment after two days of strenuous effort. He simply couldn't bring himself to do it.
That's why 'Elian' bore such a crushing weight of guilt. He should have intervened, even if it meant going against Elian's wishes. He had failed in his fundamental duty: safeguarding Elian. Forgiving himself seemed impossible. Julia's inquiries only exacerbated his inner turmoil, adding salt to the wound.
When Elian fell unconscious, 'Elian' remained conscious. He could still scan their body, quickly discerning the condition of their eyes and brain. He had been forced into a deep sleep for a day because, with Elian, the main, completely incapacitated, he couldn't control their body. He had to patiently await Elian's gradual resurfacing of consciousness before he could awaken. Regrettably, Elian's recovery would be protracted, as he had borne the brunt of the exhaustion.
During this time, 'Elian' had also sensed the miraculous healing of his body. Although he couldn't identify the healer without the ability to see or hear at that moment, Julia was the prime candidate. Her knowledge of his brain's condition, along with the healer's swift intervention, pointed to her being the reason of the miraculous recovery.
Now that he knew, 'Elian' knew he had to take action. He assumed a kneeling position on the bed, lowering his head toward Julia.
"I am sorry," he said, his voice filled with remorse. "I am truly sorry," he reiterated.
"I... I should have stopped him," the words had haunted him since the previous day. He continued, "Thank you, Thank you so much, Julia." Gratitude welled up within him. Despite his failure, he recognized the incredible healing she had performed. What Julia had accomplished was nothing short of miraculous, and it humbled him.
Julia and Lysandra, on the other hand, were shaken to their core. They were well acquainted with 'Elian,' or rather El, the second personality of Elian, who had always placed Elian's safety above all else and possessed an unmatched sense of pride. In fact, before Elian's eighth year, El had never uttered a word to anyone else, as communicating with anyone other than Elian had seemed unnecessary. They all remembered how Elian had been the one to threaten self-harm to coax El into speaking for the first time.
Yet here he was, sincerely asking for forgiveness. His expressions and the tears he struggled to hold back left no room for doubt.
Julia offered a gentle smile, wiped away her tears, and placed a comforting hand on El's shoulder. She spoke soothingly, "It's okay. We all make mistakes." She could tell that El was deeply impacted by the situation. Julia understood that allowing him to torment himself like this would only be harmful.
Hardest chapter to date