Season 2 Chapter 21
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“Were you still there?”
“How can you say that when I told you multiple times I was here from the start.”
“I thought that it was about time for you to leave.”
“How cold you treat your father.”
Fran Page feigned sadness, but his smile returned once he realized Ian remained impassive.
“Don’t worry, I will leave you soon.”
That was a welcoming thought.
“Well…to put it roughly, you have become too strong. It’s like when you finally became your own self instead of my proxy.”
Ian had been a proxy Fran Page had created but had freed himself.
“Since you’re becoming stronger than me, you will say goodbye to me forever when you finish all twelve tasks.”
Ian still seemed indifferent after those words, and Fran spoke up again.
“Can’t you act sadder?”
Fran shook his head as he saw that Ian was serious.
“What will lengthen my stay here? I will try my best.”
“Continue what you were about to talk about.”
“What was that?”
“You whispered to me that you know exactly what Aeos’s power is.”
“Yes, I did say that. Things had gone astray.”
Ian heard Fran clap his hands before continuing in a confident voice.
“I will try to explain as simply as I can. Aeos’s power can be seen as a standard that divides social classes in our world, such as the nobleman…”
Fran spoke of the Imperial Family, the noblemen, and the peasants.
“The Imperial Family can become emperors, and the noblemen can become high-class government officials. However, peasants cannot become anything unless they achieve enough to get an aristocrat’s name.”
That was the well-known order of things.
“However, we are all humans. Isn’t it strange that some of us become emperors while some may fall to being slaves?”
“Who decides the benefits the noblemen and the Imperial family possess and the limits ordinary people have to endure?”
“That is based on traditional social order and standards…”
“Yes, that is that.”
Fran clapped, and Ian also began to understand.
“Aeos’s power, or her status, is the standard here in the Superior Plane. Those with stronger power here can do more things. For instance, you noticed that you could not use teleport spells or open portals here.”
Ian nodded as he knew it to be true.
“However, you saw Aphrodite open a portal without skipping a beat in front of you. Why do you think that is?”
Going up the status ladder through gaining more power would unlock more benefits, like a peasant becoming an aristocrat.
“If you become stronger, you can teleport and use portals here. Moreover, you will be able to do many more things beyond imagination.”
So, power meant authority and was a standard here. Fran had only understood a bit since the possibility was endless.
“You’re saying that I will be less limited?”
“Yes, you will be able to do much more. Come to think of it, you seem to have become smarter…”
“I finished. To add one thing, you had been about to do what only the highest-up at the Clock Tower can do despite being a mere Middle Earth bug.”
Fran seemed to be talking about turning back Cronos.
“So, that’s what made them go after you. You began this.”
“I know that.”
Ian knew that if he had not completed his explanation theory, his world would still be peaceful.
“Anyway, I still think you did well. It’s not comfortable thinking that some thought of you as bugs. You would need to exterminate them, don’t you think?”
While Fran’s words were brutal, Ian understood where he was coming from.
“So, try your best to remove all dangers against your family. I will help you as much as I can.”
Ian did not trust him, but he needed as much help as he could get.
“Don’t act like it’s for me. It’s for your curiosity.”
It was then that Fran’s presence became faint.
“…Look. I cannot even stay as myself now.”
“While you would want me to disappear, I do not want to do so yet. So go, I need to rest.”
The conversation ended there, and Ian opened his eyes to see the house Aphrodite had prepared.
Aphrodite had said to come after a rest, and Ian did not want to waste any time. He noticed that the guards were more polite to him now as he said that Aphrodite was waiting for him. It seemed that the rumors were already flying, that he had completed the first task.
Aphrodite’s statue was glowing when Ian arrived.
[Let us talk about your task. You have completed the task given you by me, Aphrodite, and I hope that this may help you.]
Ian now received his status as the one who had completed his first task. He heard Aphrodite’s voice again.
[I had promised many things to you. I said I would give you my blessing and even your guardian goddess.]
Since Aphrodite believed in keeping promises, she did not break hers with Ian.
[My best blessing is the Blessing of Attraction, which offers you goodwill from others without cost unless I take it away from you. Do you not want to know what it feels like for everyone to be kind to you?]
While Ian could not fathom the situation, he did not think it was time to refuse her offer.
“…I am very curious.”
[I thought as much.]
Ian now felt a scent more attractive than flowers.
[Also, I, Aphrodite, promise to be your guardian goddess and will help you when you request it.]
Ian felt this was the better option and the promise he had made with Hercules.
“Thank you. I feel you have been too kind.”
[It’s nothing compared to what you have done for me. I would give you more, but the scales would not allow it.]
Ian felt Aphrodite’s trust and kindness radiate toward him.
[Then, you need to continue with your second quest. Go to the statue across from me and give anything. I have been strict, and he will appear regardless of your sacrifice.]
Ian saw that it was a male statue and also slightly familiar.
“Then, I will take my leave.”
[Right. I wish you well.]
Ian walked up to the statue, dropped a pebble on the floor, and heard a voice soon.
[You are crazy, aren’t you?]
He heard Ares’ livid voice ring in the hall.