The Regressor Can Make Them All

Chapter 42



Chapter 42

Sung-Ha: How about I pay off my debt by taking care of that Jake guy?

“What in the world is he up to...”

Seeing the message Sung-Ha left on his phone first thing in the morning, Se-Hoon couldn’t help but express his disbelief.

Just when he thought it was time to settle down, Sung-Ha suggested personal revenge as payment. It seemed he truly wasn’t that different from when Se-Hoon knew him pre-regression; Sung-Ha was as ruthless and unsparing as ever.

I can’t believe I have to drag this guy along with me again... I guess I’m just unlucky.

After sending a reply to Sung-Ha, telling him to stop saying such foolish things, he promptly called Jake.

—Hello...?

The sound of Jake’s voice, which sounded like he had been pulling all-nighters for days, caught Se-Hoon off guard.

“What’s with your voice?”

—Hm? Oh... it’s nothing. What’s up?

“I just called to check in on the information I asked for before.”

—Ah, that... hold on a second.

After some sounds of rustling, which sounded like Jake was moving to a quieter spot, he continued, “I found something suspicious while looking into that incident from six months ago.”

“What did you find?”

—You heard about the Ivory Tower, right?

The Ivory Tower was a thirty-story skyscraper located in downtown Ur that was primarily used by students in the discipline of magic. However, when mentioned, people were essentially referring to the sponsorship foundation housed within.

The foundation, supported by professors and graduates in the field of magic, along with related organizations, operated independently and wielded significant influence over students in the discipline of magic at Babel Academy.

“I know a bit about it.”

—I’ll explain then. Every year, the Ivory Tower selects a handful of students for sponsorship, and Gerwin was aiming to be the sophomore candidate six months ago. But, there was another promising sophomore candidate mentioned at the time...

“Luize Valente.”

With Jake’s new information, the pieces of the puzzle were finally coming together. But there was still something missing. Se-Hoon asked another question that piqued his curiosity.

“How does Vier Barmuth fit in?”

—They probably interacted a few times since the UD Group and the Barmuth family started a business collaboration a few years ago. They’re also tied together by marriage.

“Marriage?”

—The twenty-second daughter of the Kruger family married the eldest son of the Barmuth family. It was right before their business collaboration too, so it was probably a strategic marriage.

“What a messy story.”

It was now almost certain that Gerwin and Vier had conspired against Luize. Organizing his thoughts, Se-Hoon posed another question.

“Was there anything else that caught your attention? Maybe something related to Luize Valente?”

He had somewhat expected all the information he learned up until now. So now, he needed to figure out the origin of the inhaler Luize was using.

—Hm, anything else... oh, right. Did you hear about the legal dispute between Luize Valente and Vier Barmuth?

“I’m aware of that.”

—When Luize Valente lost the case, Vier Barmuth countersued her. However, Professor Charles of the Department of Elements mediated between them. He seems to be personally sponsoring her even now.

“I see...”

While it might sound like a heartwarming tale of a mentor never giving up on his student, Se-Hoon could easily see through his hidden motives.

“Thanks. That should be enough for now. Then...”

—Ah. Wait, just a moment.

“Hm?”

—There’s... um... I have a favor to ask...”

Hearing Jake’s hesitation as he struggled to find the words, Se-Hoon was prompted to ask, “What is it?”

—Well... there are people worried about you. Like Yeom Sung-Ha sunbae... and Erika...

“...”

—If you have some time, could you let them know that you’re okay? Their glares sting.

It seemed that Jake was stuck between Sung-Ha, who was eyeing this as a perfect opportunity to settle a debt, and Erika, who was probably furious since a prized talent was harmed.

Considering the peculiar temperaments of both, Jake must have been enduring quite the situation.

If Aria joined in on this...

Understanding Jake’s predicament to some extent, Se-Hoon made a wry smile and replied, “Got it. I already sent a message to Sung-Ha, and I’ll reach out to Erika too.”

—Thanks...

“I should be thanking you. Let me know if you find out anything else.”

Ending the call, he checked the reply from Sung-Ha.

Sung-Ha: Got it.

“Got it my ass...”

Having sent another message to stay away from Jake, he looked through his contact list to message Erika, but...

“I don’t have her number... right.”

He realized they had never exchanged numbers; their conversations always happened when she came to find him or when they coincidentally bumped into each other.

Pondering what to do, Se-Hoon soon shrugged it off.

Well, nothing’s going to happen.

Although Sung-Ha’s actions were unpredictable, Erika wasn’t the type to cause big trouble. Deciding to pass a message to her through Jake later, he walked down the corridor.

Arriving at his destination moments later, he lightly knocked on the door of Luize’s room, which he had visited the day before.

Knock, knock.

“Who is it?”

“The person who helped you yesterday—”

Bang!

Before he could finish his sentence, the door slammed open. Two pale hands immediately shot out, grabbed him by the collar, and pulled him down.

Pulled down to eye level, he was able to see blazing blue eyes burning with rage. It seemed the mana inside her body was resonating with her emotions and revealing itself through her eyes.

She’s pretty mad, all right.

Had she been pre-regression Luize, she probably would already have unleashed enough mana to render him incapacitated for four weeks. He immediately mentally prepared himself for what might come next.

“Youuuuuuuuu...”

She had lost any sense of reason to anger.

“Fuuuuuckinggg baaaaaastarddddddd!!!”

Her voice, which wasn’t even amplified by mana, was loud enough to make his ears ring. Faced with her vehement welcome, he looked at her with displeasure.

“Why are you suddenly cursing at me?”

“Suddenly? Suuuuuddenly, you say? Do you have any idea what you have done to me?!” screamed Luize, her insides twisting with rage upon seeing Se-Hoon’s calm demeanor.

She might have accepted two weeks of absolute rest as the consequence of her actions, but Professor An Jung-Wan went a step even further.

“It seems the intensity of the rehabilitation experiments was too much for you. Let’s reduce the intensity level to level one and start over gradually.”

She had painstakingly increased the intensity of the rehabilitation experiments over the last six months, but it was reduced from level ten to level one in an instant because of him.

While it wasn’t as bad as her injury worsening, to Luize, who had been enduring her hospital stay using the intensity of the experiments as milestones, it was nothing short of a disaster.

“If only you didn’t say anything to the professor... or scare me with that stupid mana disability warning...!”

Shouting those words, Luize shook his collar as if she had been wronged. But contrary to the expected reaction, Se-Hoon’s eyes sparkled.

“You didn’t use that inhaler yesterday?”

“Yeah, I didn’t. But so what! If you were in my situation, would you have used it?!”

His warning that she would worsen her injuries or even develop mana disability had rendered her unable to use the inhaler, especially since he said it at a time when she was seeing no progress during her rehabilitation experiments.

If I knew it would turn out like this, I should have just used it...!

While Luize internally vented her frustrations, Se-Hoon was staring at her in surprise due to her actions.

I just hoped that she would remember my warning.... She’s definitely different from her Blast Dog days.

Perhaps it was because she still harbored the hope that she would be able to cure her mana impairment that she was somewhat lax regarding other related matters.

Thinking things might be easier than expected, he waited for her hands to stop shaking him.

“So, you do trust me, huh?”

Huff... huff... I absolutely do not! Why would I trust someone like you, you son of a—”

“What if I said I could treat your mana impairment?”

Hearing his suggestion, Luize suddenly stopped, holding back all the curse words she was going to bombard Se-Hoon with. She hesitantly locked eyes with him.

His gaze, despite being shaken for three minutes straight, was steady; to him, he was just stating something easy. The sight made her involuntarily swallow dryly.

“...Do you even know what mana impairment is?”

“I know that it’s an incurable condition that even the Perfect Ones struggle with, at least for now.”

“...”

Hearing his confident words, Luize bit her lip. If it had been anyone else, she would have just dismissed their proposal as nonsense. But it hadn’t come from just anyone; it had come from Se-Hoon, so she couldn't just ignore it.

Ordinary Student Forges Rare-tier Weapon with an effect Resembling Sword Aura!

The Mass Production of Sword Aura Weapons Finds Light in a Breakthrough after Previously Ending in Failure.

Vulkan Academy’s Principal: “If all the rumors are true, a new faction will emerge from this breakthrough.”

Rather than the thousands, if not tens of thousands, of ordinary people, it was always a single genius who advanced technology into new realms.

And the talent of Se-Hoon, who was standing right in front of her, was so prominent that it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to call him one of those geniuses. As such, despite the absurd claim that he could cure mana impairment, an inexplicable belief began to form within her.

Damn it...

For a moment, she thought that this entire situation was perhaps a setup by Vier. But, if she didn’t even listen to what he had to say, she felt like she would regret it forever.

Done with wrestling with incessant doubts a while later, she clenched her teeth and made a decision.

“If you spout nonsense again, I really won’t let you off. Got it?”

“When have I ever said any nonsense...”

“Quiet! Stop twisting my words!” grumbled Luize with dissatisfaction.

Letting go of Se-Hoon’s collar, which she had been gripping tightly, she turned around.

“Come in.”

With that, she entered the room first.

Reminded of old memories from her cold response, he chuckled and followed her in, closing the door behind him.

“Sit here.”

Se-Hoon sat down in a chair pulled over from the desk, facing her, who was perched on the bed.

Their gazes intertwined in the air. For a while, they stared at each other’s black and blue eyes without avoidance until Se-Hoon decided to speak first.

“There’s a lot to talk about... but let’s start with what you’re most curious about.”

He walked over and took out the silver inhaler from a black case he pulled out of a drawer.

“Who did you get this from?”

“That’s...”

“Never mind. It must be hard to say outright that a professor of the Department of Elements secretly got it for you.”

“What...?”

Seeing her eyes widen, which basically confirmed his guess, he flicked the inhaler in his hand.

“This ‘inhaler.’ I don’t know its official name, but I call it a mana corrosion device.”

“A mana corrosion device...?”

“Yeah. It’s a bit complicated to explain in detail, so I’ll just show you.”

“What? No, wait...!”

Before she could stop him, he put the mana corrosion device in his mouth, pressed the button, and took a light breath, causing green mana to immediately flow into his body.

Feeling a strange, refreshing sensation from the presence of the green mana, he quickly created a temporary passage with Soul-Honing.

Click-

Following his guidance, the green mana entered the newly created path, quietly circulating it to find a place to stay.

And the moment it confirmed there were no other types of mana present in the mana circuit it had entered—

Crack-

It revealed its true nature, rooting itself in the mana circuit.

“You pervert... huh?”

Stopping in her tracks, Luize widened her eyes at the scene before her. She no longer cared about snatching the inhaler back.

Se-Hoon’s entire body was glowing softly with green light. The sight might simply make it seem like he was absorbing mana, but she immediately recognized what was actually occurring in his body.

Who is he...

He definitely looked like the same brash blacksmith in her eyes, but for some reason, it felt like someone else was sitting there. Faced with the alien sight, she finally understood what Se-Hoon meant by corrosion.

It completely changes the mana circuit...?

It wasn’t simply corroding the mana within the circuit; it was rooting itself throughout the entire mana circuit and changing its very nature. At the realization, she reflexively grasped her throat.

She always thought that the green mana was healing her wounded throat, but it turned out that it had been rooting itself in her mana circuit, which had lost any resistance due to mana impairment.

“Ugh...!”

She felt as if hundreds of parasites were burrowing into her throat and trembled with the urge to tear her throat out immediately. Noticing this, Se-Hoon, who had been examining his body, frowned.

She’s going to have a backlash again.

If a mana backlash occurred, she might be put in intensive care; if that happened, it would become difficult for them to meet.

Deciding to calm her down, he quickly infused Scarlet Lotus into the mana circuit he temporarily created. The green mana was instantly engulfed by Scarlet Lotus, and every tiny root was burned away to prevent future problems.

Removing Scarlet Lotus from the temporary mana circuit, he quickly grabbed Luize’s wrists.

“Don’t clutch your throat. Take deep breaths.”

Haah... hah...”

Curled up, she continued to tremble, seemingly unable to hear him. Seeing this, he quickly grabbed her face, forcing her to meet his gaze.

“Don’t close your eyes. Look at me and breathe deeply. Breathe.”

Closing her eyes would make her remember her trauma and worsen the seizure, so it was crucial to make her focus on a real object.

Having done this many times for her before the regression, he continued to calmly order her to take deep breaths, never breaking eye contact. Thankfully, Luize’s condition began to improve gradually.

Haah... hoo...”

Eventually, her breathing slowly stabilized, and her eyes cleared.

Seeing the seizure subside, he let go of her face and waited until she was completely calm. Finally calmed down, she let out a sigh.

“Thank you...”

“It’s fine. Anyway, do you understand why I said you would develop mana disability?”

She nodded in response to his question.

“If the corrosion had continued, the mana circuit in my throat would have transformed into one that was different from the rest in my body... and from that point on, there would have been a conflict with my body’s main mana circuit, rendering me unable to use mana at all.”

Put simply, her mana circuit originally could handle two amps of current, but due to the corrosion, the mana circuit in her throat could now only handle one amp of current. As a result, the mana circuit in her throat would be overloaded by the output of the main mana circuit. With mana unable to flow through one circuit, she would ultimately be rendered with mana impairment.

“...”

Having learned the whole truth, Luize made a look of desolation.

Her professor had always been there for her, supporting and helping her no matter what. He had been there when the Ivory Tower had suspended her since she was injured and when she was nearly expelled from school due to a false accusation.

“You can overcome the mana impairment. So no matter what trouble comes your way, never give up.”

The image of Professor Charles, an elderly man who had handed her the inhaler with an encouraging smile, appeared in her mind.

But then his smile twisted into a sneer in her head, one that was similar to Vier Barmuth’s.

Grind-

And she clenched her teeth hard.

She had just wanted to become an outstanding hero. What had she done to deserve such torment? Overwhelmed by the miserable reality, her sense of injustice, resentment, and rage exploded.

“No matter what, I will definitely get back at them...”

She vowed to repay those who brought her this misfortune a hundred, no, a thousandfold, or until she felt satisfied.

Crack-

Unaware of the blood flowing from her mouth, she ferociously gnashed her teeth. As she did so, a peculiar change took place in the room. All of the mana in the room was trembling, responding to her “will.”

Se-Hoon smiled slightly at this sight.

Good.

Her unique skill, Mana Assimilation, was finally showing signs of awakening.

Though it hadn’t fully awakened, if she could assimilate this amount of mana already, she would surely easily master the skill, the symbol of the Blast Dog.

Having confirmed everything he needed to, he looked at Luize, who was still growling.

“I’m still looking into Professor Charles, so let’s talk when things are clear, okay?”

“Got it.”

“Next, about your mana impairment.”

She flinched at his words, but she quickly calmed down by taking a deep breath. She then nodded.

“Tell me about it.”

“To be precise, there’s nothing I can do about the mana impairment itself. I’m a blacksmith after all, not a healer.”

“...”

“But I can help you ‘adjust’ so that you can cast spells.”

Others might find it difficult to follow through with his method, but it was certainly possible for Blast Dog Luize Valente with the talent she possessed.

Quietly looking into his eyes, she slowly opened her mouth.

“What do you want me to do?”

Her doubts about his abilities had vanished, but her suspicion surrounding his motives deepened because of Professor Charles.

Knowing that a half-hearted explanation wouldn’t do him any good, he decided to answer honestly.

“I want two things from you. First, help me explore the Six Great Demon Realms in the future. And second...”

He paused. Then, looking at the tense Luize, he slightly raised the corners of his mouth.

“Become stronger than anyone else.”

“...”

“If you truly believe you can do it, then whether it’s revenge or rehabilitation, I’ll help you with all I’ve got.”

Taken aback by the unexpected response, she stared blankly, but then she quickly made a smile.

“You can’t back out later, okay?”

“You’re one to talk.”

The deal made, they naturally shook each other’s left hands.

Though their bond level hadn’t increased, the amount of trust Luize had for him felt much stronger than before. Now, he could help her train until she was discharged. With that thought, he glanced at the mana corrosion device on the desk.

Now that I think about it... that can also be useful for training if used correctly...

Deciding to use it one more time to confirm his thoughts, he reached for the device.

“I’ll just use it one more time...”

“Don’t you dare!”

Unfortunately for him, she snatched it away before he could put it in his mouth.

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