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Return of Han & Tang
Of course, “Old Drunkard” isn’t an actual name; it was just a title that Mo Li had given his nominal guardian. As the name suggests, alcohol was the old man’s life. Even so, his tolerance was surprisingly low, and he would often get drunk after downing only a few mugs, which would then lead to him starting random street fights. Moreover, he also had no qualms about appearance, always sporting an unkempt beard while leading an unruly lifestyle. Although Mo Li didn’t know what this old man’s profession was when he was young, all of his skills as an assassin were passed on to him from the old man.
A strange point about him though was that although he always got absolutely hammered before going out on missions, if it was one he accepted, then failure was never even a question. From the moment Mo Li was conscious of his own existence, he had already been following this old assassin as a lackey. Although his meals weren’t always guaranteed, his life could still be considered good enough. The Old Drunkard didn’t mistreat him, but all of that lasted until his twelfth birthday.
At the age of twelve, Mo Li was easily abandoned by the old man and left at the almshouse, where Mo Li hasn’t seen him since. Mo Li still has memories of secretly crying to himself the night he was abandoned. He was just a little orphan boy with no parents who got abandoned at the age of 12 by the only person he had considered family on this planet. That feeling of abandonment, as if being forsaken by the world, would definitely not be understood by the children of the nobles.
But these were all things of the past. In his previous life, when Mo Li was on the run, the Old Drunkard never appeared to see him. Perhaps deep down, Mo Li always had hope in his heart that the Old Drunkard was looking for him, but that hope gradually faded with the wear of time, and Mo Li’s heart slowly became rigid. But none of it mattered now; Mo Li had long grown used to the feeling of abandonment.
Awakening from his lull of memories, Mo Li continued to inspect the crystal pendant and black ring inside the small box. Apart from the unique looking pendant, the ring that was next to it seemed somewhat plain, with intricate patterns that seemed like text carved into it, faintly exuding an ancient aura. It could be seen from a glance that these two accessories weren’t things that would be used by an ordinary family. Mo Li couldn’t understand why the Old Drunkard would ask someone to give these to him when he turned fifteen since in his previous life he never received them.
After assassinating Norma, he immediately fled the town that very night, never even having the chance to return to the almshouse and greet the old man before leaving. Obviously, he would have never received this ring and pendant. From his years of experience though, Mo Li could tell that this pair of accessories wasn’t simple and may have been enchanted. Unfortunately, being just an assassin without knowledge of other trades, appraising jewelry wasn’t his forte, and he couldn’t discern anything unique about these two accessories.
After sliding the ring onto his finger and hanging the pendant around his neck, Mo Li looked at himself in the mirror, but there were no changes. From this, he deduced that even if these two accessories were enchanted, the enchantment definitely wasn’t for changing appearances. So, what were these two accessories used for? Mo Li had previously read in a certain book that special requirements were sometimes needed to activate enchanted accessories, like immersing them in water or calcining them.
Mo Li threw both accessories into water he had gotten from the well earlier. The water rippled under the moonlight, but the accessories gave no reaction. Mo Li then tried burying them, with the same result. As far as calcining them went, Mo Li was too scared of burning them up, it would be such a waste. He was brought up poor, and even the thought of burning a pendant and ring of such good quality scared him. Selling them to a jeweler would still be more profitable than burning them. Maybe these two unique looking accessories were just ordinary accessories after all.
After trying various methods, a wave of tiredness washed over Mo Li. He yawned and retreated to his small wooden bed. Maybe he had expended too much energy that day, because as soon as he lay down, he fell asleep, forgetting about the accessories he was still wearing. In the still darkness, the pendant started emitting a steady glow, unknown to Mo Li. Also unknown to Mo Li were the mesmerizing dragon eyes that suddenly lit up just outside the outskirts of the city. The alluring figure had long been there, awaiting their opportunity, and in the next instant, they appeared beside the slumbering Mo Li. He was completely unguarded, perhaps due to his mental and physical fatigue. He was so deeply asleep that he did not wake even as someone tied him up and transported him out of the room.
Mo Li was awakened by a sense of suffocation. Upon awakening, she found herself lying on an unknown stone slab, her four limbs tightly fixed in place by energy ropes. But these were not her primary concerns. In the next moment, as she clamped her legs together, she realized that something very important was missing.
“After living for over ten years, you don’t even know what race you belong to. Tsk, did you give your last ten years to a pig or something?” As the crescent moon hung high in the night sky, Mo Li quickly snapped out of her reverie. A captivating dragon girl with silver hair stood over her, her dreamlike face dripping with cold mockery. However, Mo Li had no attention to spare for the girl, as her thoughts were tangled like a ball of yarn, offering no clear conclusion.
I’m not human. I’m not human? One’s perception of their own race isn’t established overnight, and having it shattered left Mo Li feeling nothing but confusion and self-doubt. Impossible. This is impossible! In my last life, I was human until I died. So why is it that in this life, my little brother just vanished? Is the butterfly effect really happening this fast? Exactly where did the change occur? Could it be because I didn’t kill Norma like in the original worldline, and now the consequences are catching up?
No, killing an Earl and the disappearance of my little brother don’t have a direct correlation. Could it be… Mo Li’s racing brain quickly considered the accessories he’d received from the Old Drunkard. After eliminating all impossibilities, this idea no longer seemed so absurd.
“No way, right…” Mo Li swallowed heavily, the weight on her chest a reminder of the strange pendant she was currently wearing. I can’t be wrong. It must be that weird pendant’s fault! Old Drunkard, I really have to hand it to you. You can be thousands of miles away and still find a way to screw me over!
As Mo Li thought about it, this wasn’t the first time the unreliable Old Drunkard has screwed her over. Mo Li always had to worry about her next meal due to the old man’s alcoholic tendencies and extreme laziness. Instead of him raising Mo Li, it would be more accurate to say that Mo Li was raising him by accepting jobs from unscrupulous, blackhearted, businesses that exploited child labor. Even all of that was acceptable to Mo Li, but that unreasonable Old Drunkard would often get drunk, slip away without warning, and leave her to cover his debt through forced labor. You old *******, you better hope I never see you again, or there will be hell to pay! “Charles, you know that old man, right?” Charles was the name of the old drunkard. Mo Li trembled with anger; he never imagined that the Charles would have the connections required to enlist a dragon to find him for the purpose of screwing with him.
“Charles? Who’s that?” Elsa raised her brows with genuine confusion.
“Don’t play dumb! I know it’s because of this pendant that I’m like this now! You still dare say you don’t know that old man?” Perhaps due to the regression of her body, Mo Li’s emotions seemed to be affected as well. She pouted and bared her canines. If it weren’t for the fact that she was bound hand and foot, she would likely be thrashing around like a child throwing a tantrum. While Mo Li was brandishing her little teeth with a self assumed super fierce look, she looked extremely cute. Of course, an actual giant dragon angry would certainly be a terrifying sight, but who could be afraid of a baby dragon that still has stubby baby teeth?