|Author: We Ain’t Fish||Original Source: SFACG||Word Count: 2667 characters|
|Translator: Myuu||English Source: Re:Library||Word Count: 1614 words|
|Editor(s): Yanga, Deximus_Maximus|
“When I found out that the church would hand out free bread and milk to their followers, I knew I could place my faith in them and that Jehovah was my god.”
Thea stared at the nostalgic look on Lilith’s face speechlessly, wondering to herself why the girl who used magic scrolls that were worth half of Aeria for the past few days would covet some free bread and milk.
Perhaps Lilith could tell what Thea was thinking, she said, “Believe me, I was not always this rich.”
“In fact, I was at a low point in my life at that time. Heaven was merciless. The continuous natural disasters (rain) left the empire’s treasury in deficit for three consecutive days. I was starv-… saddened. For the sake of feeding mysel-… my people, I had to do my best to find food as the ruler of the empire. Hence in my desperation, I stepped foot inside the church on that cold and rainy night.”
“But Lilith, you’re not a human being.”
Lilith, who was recounting her tale like some brave hero, was instantly reverted to her usual self by Thea’s sudden statement.
“…How did you know?”
Thea tilted her head and poked at Lilith’s smooth skin. “Although my emotions were suppressed when I was fighting with you earlier, I retained my consciousness. Not only that, my senses in certain aspects were keener than usual. Besides, you can’t possibly be a human with that speed of recovery. Having said that, your skin is really fair and soft. You look no different than a daughter from a rich human family. It’s hard to imagine your real form.”
Despite discovering that the other party wasn’t a human, Thea was still treating this unidentified creature of unknown origin like a friend. Lilith wasn’t sure if she had keen senses or was just being naive.
“Well, don’t worry about trivial matters like that. You can just treat me like a human being.”
“Okay then, but were all that true?”
“Of course it is. I’m your best friend. Would I deceive you just because you are young, naive, innocent and ignorant?” Lilith clasped Thea’s hands tightly and told her affectionately, “We’re friends and friends don’t lie to each other.”
“Oh… I see… I didn’t expect Lilith to have such a tragic past. It’s just pitiful to think that you had to find food all by yourself. I thought that you would be served at least a hundred dishes every meal and never of the same dish. Little did I expect you would be in such a… pitiful state.” Unsurprisingly, the naive and innocent Thea really bought Lilith’s nonsense. She even looked like she was about to cry.
“What’s wrong, Lilith? Is your chest hurting?”
“I’m… fine. It’s just my conscience acting up.”
“Oh… that’s good. And then? Did you manage to find food for your people after you went in?”
“And then… I stayed there two days before I escaped.”
“Huh? Why? Could it be that you discovered the evil conspiracy of the false god Jehovah?” Thea widened her eyes and asked.
“…Ahem, of course.”
Lilith spoke righteously, “Naturally, someone as righteous as me would never wallow in the mire with them so I broke it off cleanly with them. I didn’t even want to see them. It was ridiculous that those fake followers tried to stop me from leaving but fortunately, I managed to quickly slip past them.”
She was just kidding. How could she possibly tell the truth at this time? She wasn’t going to say that she had escaped out of guilt for not praying on time because she had been sleeping in, or wiping her butt with a holy bible, or breaking the biggest cross in the church and selling it off as scrap.
She even nearly got taken away to parade the streets by those crazy nuns!
“After that, I once again embarked on the journey to save my people (tummy) and came to a temple established by the believers of a god named Shakyamuni.”
Speaking up to this point, Lilith looked angry again. “That Shakyamuni is even worse! He forbade his own followers from eating meat just because he didn’t like meat! My face even turned green from eating all those vegetarian noodles and dishes for a week!”
“And so for the sake of my people (tummy), I left the place again.”
“Next, I came to a place known as a refugee camp. It was even worse this time. The people there kept on introducing jobs to me all day long and then mercilessly drove me away. If I had the energy to work, why would I even reduce myself into joining them in the first place?! They were really brainless. No wonder why they could only stay in the low social class.”
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“In the end, I didn’t stay for even two days.”
Lilith’s story left Thea with a lot of questions in mind. She just couldn’t shake off the feeling that Lilith wasn’t doing something great at that time.
No, no. It was wrong to doubt your friend. Why would Lilith deceive her?
“Nothing. That’s all.”
“Huh? What do you mean.”
Lilith shrugged. “Nothing means nothing. That is why I never believe in those so-called gods anymore. I only believe in myself.”
The corners of Thea’s lips twitched. “Then is there any point in you telling me this, Lilith?”
“Of course there is!” Lilith put her hands on Thea’s shoulders, then continued speaking in an enticing tone that those cult preachers would use, “Think about it, did I lead a good life before putting my faith in a god?”
Thea thought about it for a moment before replying, “No.”
“Then what about after I put my faith in a god?”
“Didn’t seem any better.”
“Then what about after I stopped believing in the gods and started believing in myself?”
“Seems like… you’re doing very well.”
“That’s right. What conclusion can you draw from this, Thea?”
“Hmm…” Thea tilted her head and thought for a while before she replied pensively, “The people’s living standards have generally improved?”
“What the heck are you saying, I’m not even a human!”
“But didn’t you ask me to treat you like a human?”
Lilith almost couldn’t breathe. She grabbed Thea’s shoulders and shook her violently. “I’m telling you that it’s useless to believe in gods!!”
“How… is that p-possible? The Radiant… Goddess… Ahh… Lilith… stop… shaking me. I’m getting dizzy.”
Lilith stopped shaking her then plopped down on the ground and crossed her arms in front of her chest. “How is that not possible? Think about it, why would such a powerful existence even care about the life and death of humans that are no more than insects in her eyes? The goddess is only using all of you as tools to collect faith. You’re weeds that can easily be replaced. She is only giving all of you a little benefit to make you grow stronger and more useful to her.”
“Impossible!!” Thea retorted angrily, “The goddess is definitely not like that! She bestowed upon us everything! Houses, clothes, food!”
“The goddess didn’t give all of you those. All of you are the ones who created everything with your own hands and through your hard work.”
“Nonsense!” Thea stood up weakly, ignoring her own physical condition. Her cheeks were flushed with anger and she looked like she would hit Lilith if the latter kept up with this accusation.
“I’m not talking nonsense.” Lilith spread her arms. Although Thea looked like a furious tigress, she was less than a paper-folded tiger that posed no threat at all.
“Let me ask you this, if a war were to break out between the Luminous Theocracy and the Holy Dragon Empire, the kind that would lead to the demise of a nation, who do you think will win, considering the intervention of the gods?”
“Probably… the Holy Dragon Empire. After all, it is considered one of the strongest on the continent. But if the goddess would intervene… then the Dragon God of the Holy Dragon Empire would intervene too. When it comes to the battle between the gods, I’m not too sure who would emerge victorious,” Thea replied while playing with her fingers.
Lilith smiled contemptuously. “Don’t worry, the Dragon God would never interfere. And I guess the Radiant Goddess wouldn’t be interfering either.”
“Impossible! Even if she didn’t intervene, it was also because she was worried that the Dragon God would stab her in the back or for various other reasons.”
“Oh?” Lilith suddenly leaned closer and stared straight into Thea’s eyes. “So you think it’s reasonable for her to abandon tens of millions of devout believers over some empty threats or for some unknown reasons?”
Thea stared right back at Lilith, her cheeks puffed up like a squirrel and her hands clenched into tight fists. She wanted Lilith to take back her disrespectful words.
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But Lilith only responded with a scornful smile.
Unable to find any reason to refute, Thea could only kick the ball back at her. “Then how did you know that the Dragon God wouldn’t intervene for the Holy Dragon Empire?” she huffed angrily.
“Of course I would know.”
Lilith’s azure eyes started burning and turned into molten gold. At the same time, Thea found herself suffocated by an ancient dragon’s distinctive aura.
Lilith stood up and looked down at Thea who looked like a deer in headlights. She then chuckled sweetly, “My real name is Artemis Niger Lilith, a direct descendant of the Dragon God, Aterlieum Niger Gerald.”
“Of course I would know about my ancestor.”
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