With a thud, Ruatisha collapsed as she vomited blood.

To Ixion, her small body falling apart seemed to happen very slowly.

His body moved as quickly as an arrow leaving a bow, arriving at Ruatisha’s side in an instant.

With a swoop, he caught the falling girl in his arms.

It was only then that the people around them began to react with surprise.


“Miss! What, what do we do! Blood, there’s blood…!”

“Doctor, doctor! Call a doctor right away!”

It was chaos, as if a war had broken out.

In the midst of all the commotion, Ruatisha thought to herself.

‘No…don’t be surprised. I’m not really hurt….’

She was just getting better because she was loved.

It was true.

[Immunity increases!]

[Fatigue is relieved!]

[Tension in the back that was bunched up and stiff is now soft and relaxed!]

[Quest ⟨The Path of a Good Reader (1)⟩ has been completed.]

[A reward of 1000 cash will be given.]

The notification window that appeared before her was proof of that.

‘But wasn’t my stiff neck caused by that demon? Are you giving me medicine after hurting me?’

Ruatisha opened her mouth as she felt her stiff back loosen up.

“I…xion, don’t worry…about me. I’m really okay….”


Before she could finish speaking, the strength left her body.


Ixion’s lips trembled as if he couldn’t believe it.

But the large eyes that had always looked straight at him remained tightly closed and did not open again.

“Ruatisha! Ruatisha!”

Ixion called out his younger sister’s name, his face turning pale blue.

‘This guy, stop shaking mr like that. My ears are ringing.’

[Headache is recovering!]

No response.

‘You always nag me.’

Seeing Ixion so surprised made her feel uneasy.

She wanted to say again that she was okay, but her mouth didn’t move.

Soon, Ruatisha’s consciousness sank deeply.

* * *

“You don’t know the cause?”

“I-I’m sorry, Your Excellency.”

As soon as the words were spoken, a black magic spell was cast by Duke Phaeraton.

“A useless piece of trash like you has no place in this castle.”

“H-Hold on, Your Excellency!”

Anna knelt in front of the prostrate doctors, blocking the way.

His bright red eyes turned towards Anna.

It seemed that he was willing to kill Anna as well.

Anna swallowed hard.

She didn’t step forward to save the doctor’s life.

“I also want to grab these people by the neck right now, but treating the young lady is a priority. After all, these people are doctors who are highly valued in the duchy. Without them, there is no one to examine the young lady’s condition.”

Duke Phaeraton’s gaze turned towards the prostrate doctor.

Although he didn’t like it, his eyes stopped flickering when he saw the black magic spell on the Duke’s hand.

The doctor, who had barely survived, breathed a sigh of relief and opened his mouth carefully.

“Um, Your Excellency. According to the examination results, the young lady is healthy. In fact, her condition is better than right after the kidnapping incident.”

“But why did my daughter vomit blood and collapse?”


It was a problem that even a skilled doctor couldn’t answer clearly.

But if he says that he cannot find the cause like before, his head will definitely roll this time.

The doctor’s brain was working furiously.

“The human body is mysterious. Especially with the bloodline of the Phaeraton family, even if there is no magic, there is a high possibility that her body is still different from ordinary humans.”

It might sound like nonsense, but it was a convincing argument for the Phaeraton family.

“…Seeing my daughter’s intelligence, she is definitely different from other people.”

“Yes, so I think the young lady’s body is also special, and she might have unconsciously expelled the negative energy built-up in her body.”

The doctor’s tongue was too long.

Feeling uneasy glances, he quickly shut his mouth again.

“Don’t Aura users expel their accumulated energy and miasma through Aura? It seems similar to that.”

“Then why did she collapse?”

“Expelling miasma requires a high level of concentration even for Aura users. It must have been exhausting for the young lady’s young body. It’s common for people to fall into a deep sleep to recover. Perhaps that’s what happened?”

It was a hastily concocted explanation, but it wasn’t entirely wrong.

Even a lord sometimes hesitates before grasping the doorknob1this phrase suggests that even the most capable individuals may have moments of doubt or caution.

This man was not a lord, but a truly outstanding doctor.

“What’s the conclusion?”

“If things continue like this, the young lady will wake up safely.”

Honestly, he had no idea what the cause was, but since it was clear that the youngest miss was safe, the doctor answered with a fairly firm tone.

Duke Phaeraton let out a sigh of relief.


Finally given permission to leave, the doctor let out a relieved sigh.

Bending his waist, he was about to leave the room.

“If anything happens to my daughter…”

The Duke’s voice, like a bolt of lightning, grabbed the doctor’s ankle.

“You will think it’s better to die.”

With bright red eyes, he stared at the doctor.

“I’ll keep that in mind, Your Excellency.”

After the doctor left the room, Duke Phaeraton approached Ruatisha, who was lying down.

The child’s small face looked very peaceful, as if she were deeply asleep.

“Why is it that you never let me relax.”

Not only was she almost kidnapped, but now she had collapsed with a nosebleed.

And that wasn’t all.

Before returning from the war, she was barely scraping by and couldn’t even get a decent meal.

He thought everything would be solved if he brought her here and took care of her, but it hasn’t changed a thing.

She reaches out for a hug.

She asks to be held, to be put to sleep, to be fed, to have their hand held.

She had so many demands.

And then she started hating him and even cried, saying he wasn’t her real father.

She was such a frustrating child.

He had three other children to born before her, but this was the first time he had dealt with such a child.

“But I still… “

His hand stroking the sleeping child’s hair was as careful as touching fragile glass.

“Ruatisha Phaeraton.”

Just pronouncing her name made him feel like he was biting into something sweet and delicious.

Even though he didn’t like sweet things, it was addictive and irresistible.

“My daughter.”

His own flesh and blood.

A child who inherited his blood.

That’s what this feeling was about, knowing that such an existence existed in the world.

“I don’t mind being at your mercy for the rest of my life.”

* * *

After guarding his daughter for a while, Duke Phaeraton finally came out.

In truth, he wanted to stay by his daughter’s side until she woke up, but he couldn’t.


The child who was crouching in front of the door raised his head with a sniffle.

His face, which had always been smiling and round, looked battered like it had been hit by a storm.

He had to go outside because of this kid.

It was because Ixion hadn’t moved an inch in front of the door since Ruatisha was moved to the room.


It was the first time.

His third son, who was so confident that he could be called arrogant, was calling him so helplessly.

“It’s my fault.”

A face like a lost child.

“I kept using magic in front of her…”

Ixion tightly grabbed the hem of his clothes.

“Even if it wasn’t attack magic, magic itself is a burden on a child’s body, but I kept using it knowing that.”

For the first time since he was born, the boy regretted his actions.

“Do you remember why we sent Ruatisha away?”


Someone who had just been born is vulnerable to external stimuli.

Magic, which can be considered a concentration of powerful force, is truly deadly.

A young Phaeraton couldn’t perfectly control their power and would often leak magic unconsciously.

At that time, there were three young Phaeratona in the duchy.

The three sons of Duke Phaeraton.

“Ruatisha, she couldn’t control her magic, couldn’t protect herself. That’s why she was sent to the relatives.”

“There’s one thing you forgot to mention.”

“What is it?”

“If I were at the ducal residence, I could have protected Ruatisha from the magic you were emitting.”

At his words, Ixion raised his head.

“But I had to go to war because of the alliance with the Emperor.”

Since there was no Duke Phaeraton to protect her, Ruatisha was sent to Marquis Tarenka.

“I’m here in this castle now.”

Simple but firm words.

Words that meant that no harm could come to Ruatisha, who was under the protection of the Duke Phaeraton, no matter how much magic Ixion emitted.

“But, I didn’t just leak magic unconsciously…I covered her completely with magic.”

He did it on purpose.

To test her.

He didn’t even know why he wanted to test her so much.

Now he could barely understand the reason.

‘I wanted to believe.’

Because he couldn’t believe that she was approaching him so easily.

He wanted to confirm if her words of not being scared and wanting to be friends were sincere.

;If I can confirm and believe her, then what? What am I going to do?’

He didn’t know.

No, he actually did know.

‘So I can love that child as much as I could.’

Just for that reason.

He couldn’t be more foolish.

He was just scared.

He was afraid that if he trusted and loved her, he would be hurt.

So he kept checking. Can I believe her? Is it really true? Aren’t there any reasons not to believe her?

‘I hurt that little child so much just because I didn’t want to get hurt.’

It was such a useless thing to do.

In fact, Ixion had already trusted Ruatisha for a long time.

Because he had already fallen in love with her.


Regret tinged the boy’s eyes red.


Duke Phaeraton called out to his son, who was hanging his head.

“You take care of Ruatisha.”

“Can, can I really do that?”

Ixion lifted his head reflexively, but then immediately lowered it again.

“No, I can’t. It’ll only make things worse if I’m around.”

Even though his son was blaming himself, Duke Phaeraton couldn’t find any words of comfort.

“You’re so arrogant.”

He even scolded him.

“No matter how much magic you use, do you think I can’t protect my own daughter?”

A wry smile appeared on Duke Phaeraton’s face.

Ixion stared blankly at his father.

He looked so confident and self-assured.

But who would dare call Duke Phaeraton arrogant?

Slowly, life began to return to Ixion’s desolate face.

“No! Absolutely not!”

Ixion stood up suddenly.

He had been crouched down for so long that it didn’t seem to be difficult at all. His face was full of vitality like a flower drenched in spring rain.

He seemed like he was going to go straight in, but he hesitated in front of the door.

After Duke Phaeraton nodded his head, Ixion opened the door with determination and went in.

He went into his youngest sister’s room where he had been pacing back and forth outside for a long time.

Duke Phaeraton silently watched the back of his third son as he went in.

It was a strange feeling.

One he had never felt before.

* * *

Something cool touched my cheek.

‘It feels good.’

The room was so warm that I was sweating.

I smiled in my sleep and pressed my cheek against the cool thing.


The object stiffened for a moment and then I pressed my cheek more firmly.

‘…What is this?’

It was slowly moving away.

It seemed like a human hand.

‘Anna? Or is it Dad?’

I lifted my eyelids, heavy with drowsiness.

But the person holding my cheek wasn’t Anna or Dad.


Why was he here?

The kid who was always locking himself in his room whenever I tried to visit.

My question was fleeting.

‘Oh right, I fainted.’

I had momentarily forgotten because I slept too deeply.

Not only was I not feeling well, but I was also feeling very light, so the memories were coming back vividly.

Come to think of it, the last person I saw before fainting was Ixion…

‘He had a face like he was going to cry.’

I looked at the plump Ixion.

“What are you looking at.”

Ixion grumbled with a scrunched-up face.

‘Did I see wrong?’

There’s no way this prickly little kid would look like he was about to cry at me.

I was about to sit up, but then I noticed that there were a towel, a water bottle, and a thermometer next to Ixion.

“Ixion, were you taking care of me?”



“…Well, you’re sickly, so what else can I do!”

Ixion turned his head with a pout. His ears seemed to be red.

‘No, I’m not sickly. I’m perfectly healthy.’

Ixion gritted his teeth and turned on the light on the nightstand.

His face, brightly illuminated, looked more sullen than usual.

‘Did you really stay by my side the whole time?’

I was a little surprised.

‘I probably didn’t even have a fever.’

He must have been checking my temperature in case I got a fever.

I fidgeted my fingers for no reason.

This was the first time I had been taken care of by my family, even though I wasn’t really sick.

‘…Although it wasn’t really painful.’

I looked at the remaining notification.

[The feeling of being sick is fading away!]
[The abdominal muscles are getting stronger!]
[The amount of visceral fat is decreasing!]

It was an annoying ability, but I was still happy that my visceral fat had decreased.

…That’s probably why the corners of my mouth were curling up.

For no other reason.

I glanced at Ixion.

‘Maybe Ixion isn’t such a bad kid after all.’

Even though he always tormented me with his tics and insults.



I was surprised when I heard Ixion call me by my name properly for the first time.

Ixion glared at me for a while with a scrunched-up face.

He barely puckered his lips and then clamped them shut again.

Ixion didn’t say anything, but I understood what he was trying to say.

“I’ll kill you if you die.”

“No, I won’t die. Just open your eyes.”

“I was wrong.”

“…I wanted to be friends with you too.”

Ixion’s voice, which had been heard in my ears while I was still half asleep, rang in my ears.

I don’t know what kind of life Ixion has lived. How could I know?

‘But I know there’s something that hurts this kid.’

Ixion is a fool who doesn’t even know if he’s been hurt.

Like me in my past life, this kid hasn’t grown up properly either.

“Ixion, I’ve been alone for a very, very long time. That’s why I needed someone else so desperately. I prayed every day for someone to be by my side.”

But I didn’t know why I needed it so much.

I just accepted it as everyone usually thinks, ‘Because being alone is lonely.'”

Now that I’m not alone anymore, I realize why I needed someone so badly.

‘Being together, having someone by my side makes me stronger.’

It allows me to stand up again even if I stumble and fall.

It makes me very happy and gives me a warm heart.

That heart is so full that I can be sure that I am a very precious person.

“Ixion needs someone like that too.”

Someone to be together with.

Firm ground to step on.



“I need you, Ixion.”

Ixion’s expression became strange.

“Can you be my older brother?”

His red pupils that held me wavered.

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    this phrase suggests that even the most capable individuals may have moments of doubt or caution
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