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Backstory

        In a beautifully curated garden, there were a guy and a girl standing under a tree. Nicole was crying in the embrace of Einstein.

        “Boohoo…”

        “Sigh. You’ve been crying for 30 minutes already. Stop it before you dehydrate yourself,” said Einstein, trying to comfort Nicole.

        “Sniff——How can I not! Gali died to save us. Don’t you feel anything for that?” the sobbing Nicole asked in return.

        Nicole looked at Einstein with a pair of swelling eyes, who was speechless for a moment by her question.

        Both Nicole and Einstein were the elite researchers invited to join Lomond Manor. Yet they had been ambushed at the headquarter, losing their consciousness. They then found themselves trapped in this strange place after the attack.

        They had been travelling with Galileo, a golden scientist of Lomond Manor, but then a crisis had separated the lady from them. She went missing currently, for she volunteered to be a bait and draw the enemies away.

        Einstein finally talked after a moment of silence, “to be honest…I don’t believe she’s dead. How will someone powerful like her be dead?”

        Looking at the blossoming roses in the garden, Einstein found it resembling the beauty of Galileo——mesmerizing yet tough.

        “I believe she would survive.”

“Stein…” Nicole murmured. Touching by his words, she stepped back and clenched her fists. “Right! Gali is a badass. There’s no way she would be dead! She still has our promise to keep, making babies with us!” she yelled.

        “Um...you——Whoa!” A chill ran down Einstein’s spine as he sensed hostility from behind. He pounced on Nicole by covering her to dodge the incoming attack.

        A gigantic scythe was striking towards their original position at a lightning speed. Despite its huge inertia, the blade stopped before smashing the ground, leaving no trace at all.

        To Einstein, this was even more horrifying than smashing the ground into a mess, for the skillfully controlled power was more destructive than pure violence.

        “You reacted fast, Einstein,” Aristotle said, a man who was two times more robust than Einstein.

        “What? This big guy knows your name and attacked us...I get it. You’re from Lomond Manor! It’s you who kidnapped us here!” Nicole said while she was peeking behind Einstein.

        “Figured it out already? You’re quite a brilliant girl,” Aristotle said.

        “Huh. Of course! You’re not bad too.” Nicole proudly accepted the praise, and complimenting Aristotle the enemy in return.

        Yet Einstein wasn’t so optimistic like her, as the enemy wasn’t just a weakling. “Run,” he whispered to Nicole.

        “But——” Nicole stopped arguing when she saw the serious look on Einstein, and ran into a grove reluctantly. Aristotle ignored the escaped Nicole, remaining still on the ground.

        “What do you want?” asked Einstein.

        “Kid, don’t just think about the conclusion. Sometimes the cause comes from the question. Think about why did I kidnap you,” Aristotle left a hint.

        “Comes from the question...What did he want from me...No, the answer is even more fundamental...why...what is the reason exactly…”

        Aristotle left no time for Einstein to think and wielded his scythe. The strike had a unorthodox track, making Einstein hard to dodge.

        This was difficult only when Einstein didn’t use elemental power. Concentrating, Einstein controlled water element to attach on Aristotle. The shining element slowed down Aristotle’s movement, and he looked just like frozen.

        “This kid...He could slow down the movement of time around me...Isn’t this too exceptional?” Aristotle thought with with a grim face.

        Suppressing the dizziness resulting in the use of his ability, Einstein took a step backward and kicked Aristotle hard, but the enemy didn’t even move an inch.

        “Oh. Can’t hold on any longer?” Aristotle broke free as Einstein’s power wore off, staring at the gasping Einstein.

        “This kid has no idea how horrible his power is…” Aristotle thought while he was punching at Einstein. Still recovering from the last strike, Einstein was blasted away for a distance.

        “Stein!” “Don’t..don’t come over!”

        Einstein struggled to get up, stopping Nicole who was trying to come over.

        “Oops, what a vulnerable kid. I guess I only need one more hit to put you down,” said Aristotle with his head shaking. At this moment, the look of Einstein went all hopeless.

        “I don’t wanna lose...Teacher, how can I defeat the enemy?”

        Clack! A metal ticking noise sounded from his chest while a gentle male voice spoke in his mind, “think, Einstein. Even if you hit the rock bottom, you can only think and imagine…”

        “Think...Why can’t I defeat this man...It’s because I don’t have enough strength...I see it now…” After a round of questions, the hope was lit in Einstein’s eyes again.

        “Oh, struggling with the last breath. Then let me end you with my full strength as a gesture of courtesy,” Aristotle said. Enormous amount of dark element gathered on his body, forming a purple armor. With a strong leap, he thrusted himself towards Einstein.

        Einstein remained calm and conjured water element again; Yet the target had changed to himself instead of freezing Aristotle, covering his right arm with the dazzling blue sparkles. When Aristotle punched, Einstein took the hit with his right arm.

        Right when Einstein’s defense met Aristotle’s attack, a devastating shockwave was released, blasting everything in the proximity away. Even Nicole had to hold a tree tight to keep herself steady.

        Standing firm, Einstein successfully defended himself from the hit. Instead of getting provoked a wild grin appeared on Aristotle’s face. “You finally found the answer. Speeding up the time to accumulate elements in a very short period, so that you can have the overpowering strength to take down a strong enemy,” he said.

        “...I’m gonna take you down.”

        Right before Einstein made his move, he spotted a dense golden light sphere floating in the air. The shining dazzle stunned Einstein into a trance, while the look on Aristotle went grim.

        The sphere stopped above Einstein then fell rapidly. At this moment, Aristotle pushed him away and took the hit with his mechanic arm. Poof! The arm vanished.

        “Run...now…” Aristotle mumbled with his full strength before he passed out.

        A decently-dressed man walked out, waving at Einstein.

        “Oh. Hi there!”

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