Di Qi Ju: …what?
Hilda Karlyle: You are not qualified, Di Qi Ju.
It was as if an invigilator had just walked over to me at the start of an exam and gave me a big fat zero before I even got to open up the question paper.
Di Qi Ju: Why?
Hilda Karlyle: You know exactly why.
It was then that she began to give me a cold glare.
Hilda Karlyle: You’ve already heard of my ability so you should know that I saw exactly what you went through these past few days.
Hilda Karlyle: A certain matter that would’ve made you a wanted criminal in most countries.
Di Qi Ju: That matter…I’ve already been acquitted.
Di Qi Ju: I’ve never heard of the Divine Hall being the world’s policeman. Isn’t it inappropriate to fail me simply because of those criminal charges.
Hilda Karlyle: That isn’t why you were disqualified.
Hilda Karlyle: I saw a lot of things in you that a faithful shouldn’t possess.
Hilda Karlyle: To be able to survive that kind of ordeal and stand again perfectly fine…exactly what kind of ability did you gain using God’s blessing?
Hilda Karlyle: That ability, it must’ve at least cost you over a thousand wish points shouldn’t it?
Hilda Karlyle: If you were born in a human kingdom and naturally had that much wish points, how could you not have been noticed by the clergyman representing “birth”?
Hilda Karlyle: It’s not fair…
The last word she spat out through gritted teeth sounded almost like “fair”.
Hilda Karlyle: In light of the mission assigned to me by the clergyman of the Inner Ring, your existence seems even more problematic.
Hilda Karlyle: Di Qi Ju, were you recently “born” into this world?
Hilda Karlyle: Are you the real objective of my failed mission?
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: ……
…How should I answer that? Exactly how should I even answer a question like that? Hilda…she…did she already suspect that I was not a native of this world? If she realized this, what kind of treatment would I receive?
Di Qi Ju: ……
Di Qi Ju: I don’t know anything about this mission of yours or your objective, do they even have any bearing on my examination?
Di Qi Ju: If you fail me out of a personal grudge against me, I’m afraid I won’t be able to answer to the person who recommended me.
Hilda Karlyle: …
You can give me that judging look all you want but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with what I said.
So what if I am hiding something or lying about something, this was nothing more than one of those high school debates I had in the past: even if my viewpoint doesn’t fit with the general consensus, I still have to argue for it in order to win.
This was a simple question and answer examination; this was exactly what I excelled in, so there was no reason for me to be afraid at all.
Hilda Karlyle: …so you’re saying my judgement is wrong?
Di Qi Ju: This isn’t a question of right or wrong, I don’t even understand what you’re saying.
Hilda Karlyle: Fine…I’ll ask you a few questions. Do you dare to swear that you will answer these questions truthfully?
Di Qi Ju: If I know the answer, sure.
Hilda Karlyle: Where is your hometown.
Di Qi Ju: From the moment I “gained consciousness”, my home had always been in one of the frontier villages located in the southwest of Honor.
Di Qi Ju: There might have been some misunderstanding about where I came from but I’ve never admitted to them.
Hilda Karlyle: What’s that village like? Are there any specialities about it?
Di Qi Ju: The houses are made of mud bricks and our main produce is Theat. Near the outskirts of the village is a giant lake.
Hilda Karlyle: What about your family members?
Di Qi Ju: They’ve…passed away in an accident.
Hilda Karlyle: And your friends?
Di Qi Ju: They are all friends I met after joining the expedition, you’ve even met some of them before.
Hilda Karlyle: Are your wish points inborn?
Di Qi Ju: I believe so, at least I don’t remember gaining them through any external means.
Hilda Karlyle: Were all of your wish abilities made of your own will?
Di Qi Ju: Yes.
Hilda Karlyle: How many points do you have?
Di Qi Ju: …I don’t know. I have never counted them.
Hilda Karlyle: You’ve never counted them?
Di Qi Ju: Every point I spend is every point less that I have. Only after they can be counted with my fingers will I care about how many I have.
Di Qi Ju: That’s just the kind of person I am, is there a problem with that?
Hilda Karlyle: ……
Hilda Karlyle: You guarantee that what you just said was all true?
Di Qi Ju: I definitely didn’t lie, believe me.
She glared at me once more, however, my face was as unfazed as it was just moments ago.
Regarding this scenario, I had already made preparations for it in advance.
Back when I heard about Breman’s hereditary wish ability, the first thing that crossed my mind was what if someone made use of this ability to uncover my secrets. However, I was completely wrong in my thinking, because telling the truth they wanted to hear and not telling a lie were two different matters altogether; especially when one had the option to throw in off topic information.
As long as one was skilled enough, one would even be able to mislead a person without ever telling a lie.
Ever since I found out that some clergyman had a variety of abilities to uncover a person’s secrets, I had prepared my “truthful” account beforehand.
After all, casually leaving behind an incomplete answer for the examiner to deduct marks off shouldn’t be a mistake any student should make.
Hilda Karlyle: ……
Hilda Karlyle: I have one last question for you.
Di Qi Ju: Mhm.
Hilda Karlyle: Do you have any unique wish you want fulfilled with the points you planned on getting through this application?
Di Qi Ju: …what do you mean by that?
Hilda Karlyle: For example, the person who recommended you. She asked for the ability to detect any changes in a person’s wish points.
Hilda Karlyle: All those who come to the Middle Ring in search of wish points all have a special wish of their own, these wishes tend to be ones that can’t be measured using one’s own wish points.
Hilda Karlyle: So what is your unique wish?
Di Qi Ju: …
Di Qi Ju: I…
My unique wish…that’s the objective of me coming here in the first place.
—I wish to completely sever the ties between Poppy and the Divine Hall.
But…should I say it?
She managed to suss out some traces of Poppy from my “mouth” the last time we met, so should I risk revealing my objective to her now?
Special thanks to Steve Granger, Kaung Thant Win Naing, and Antoine Thompson!!
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.