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23. Injury (2)
Yoon Seung-Jae suddenly stretched his arm toward Ye-Hyeon when he stammered because he didn’t know how to ask.
Then, Ye-Hyeon’s body, which was so heavy that he couldn’t move, suddenly became light.
“Oh?” Ye-Hyeon opened his eyes wide in surprise.
Yoon Seung-Jae’s hand had several layers of thick blankets.
“Ssi…” Ye-Hyeon, aware of the situation at once, swallowed the curse to pop out.
‘How many blankets have you covered?’ Ye-Hyeon thought.
It was not a regular blanket but a hunter-only blanket made of Lake Cow’s leather that was tough enough to allow someone to sleep on a thorny road.
Ye-Hyeon hurriedly checked his body.
Ye-Hyeon was shaking, but his arms and legs moved well.
As the tension eased, the body, which had no energy, lost its strength.
“Why? Are you sick?” Yoon Seung-Jae asked.
Just now, Ye-Hyeon couldn’t see well because of the shadow on his face, but now Ye-Hyeon sees that his eyes are swollen because he cried a lot when he fainted.
“Where is Yoon Seung-Jae, and why is there a carp?”
“Hyung, is this the time to joke now?” Yoon Seung-Jae shouted.
Ye-Hyeon, who tried to make fun of Yoon Seung-Jae again with a smile, lost his words.
Tears flowed down around Yoon Seung-Jae’s eyes, staring at Ye-Hyeon with wide-open eyes.
“Hey, hey…” Ye-Hyeon jumped up and sat down in embarrassment.
Ye-Hyeon stuttered without knowing what to do and then stretched out his arm to cover Yoon Seung-Jae’s cheek.
Yoon Seung-Jae, who knew that Ye-Hyeon’s fingers were shaking intermittently, cried even more.
“Hyung, make sure…”
Yoon Seung-Jae grabbed the back of Ye-Hyeon’s hand and sniffed, rubbing his cheek in the palm of Ye-Hyeon.
He seemed to try to hold back the sound, but sometimes there was a funny sound if it didn’t work.
It was hard because Yoon Seung-Jae was crying, not just anyone else.
“Don’t cry. Why are you crying?” Ye-Hyeon, who is not good at comforting others, bit his tongue and uttered a harsh sentence awkwardly.
To be honest, Ye-Hyeon didn’t understand why Yoon Seung-Jae was crying.
‘Is he crying because he can’t beat the monster?’ Ye-Hyeon thought.
Seung-Jae missed the monster twice today, so his pride could have cracked.
It must have been even more upsetting because it was right after hearing a warning from Baek Hae-Won.
“I, because I missed it…”
“Of course, that’s right.” Ye-Hyeon tried to smirk because Yoon Seung-Jae, like a child, was cute, but the words that followed froze.
” …Hyung, because of me, I said I would protect you, but I was next to you, but….”
Yoon Seung-Jae desperately held Ye-Hyeon’s hand as if his life depended on it but simultaneously cried sadly.
Like a person who confesses, he hurriedly poured out his young feelings with his knees trembling in front of Ye-Hyeon.
Ye-Hyeon stared blankly at Yoon Seung-Jae for a long time.
At first, it was simply absurd, but soon Ye-Hyeon felt proud, and then he was grateful and a little angry.
Ye-Hyeon’s stomach throbbed every time his heartbeat.
Ye-Hyeon pressed the solar plexus with his left hand, which was drooping.
Yoon Seung-Jae’s sincere worries seemed to be conveyed on his hands with painful regrets.
Yoon Seung-Jae, who crouched his shoulders and shook his head, was affectionate and lovely as a pure child who cried for Ye-Hyeon.
This was the second time Ye-Hyeon had been affected because of other people’s emotions.
Ye-Hyeon rolled his eyes without knowing what to do.
There was no reason to cry, but Ye-Hyeon felt strange like he was going to cry.
Ye-Hyeon opened his lips and repeatedly closed them tightly several times.
“Huh…” Yoon Seung-Jae’s breath became rough with continuous crying.
‘Why are you crying so hard because of me?’ Ye-Hyeon thought.
‘Yoon Seung-Jae, you fool, I wanted to let you know that you don’t have to do that. I want you to know I’m not great enough to cherish.’ Ye-Hyeon
Yoon Seung-Jae’s straight affection, which Ye-Hyeon intentionally tried to turn a blind eye to, was heavy.
Ye-Hyeon clenched his teeth.
Ye-Hyeon wasn’t originally a friendly person.
Like his sister and Yoon Seung-Jae, he was a person who did not know how to have great affection for others or how to share it.
It was a daily routine for Ye-Hyeon to regret belatedly every time.
Maybe that’s why Ye-Hyeon wanted to give it back to Yoon Seung-Jae, who revealed it without any pretense.
‘I can’t let him keep crying like this…!’ Ye-Hyeon thought.
Ye-Hyeon took a big breath and rubbed Yoon Seung-Jae’s cheek with his thumb. His palms were burning with hot tears.
“No,” was an unbelievably sweet voice that Ye-Hyeon couldn’t believe came from him.
Ye-Hyeon’s ears were slightly red.
Yoon Seung-Jae stopped moving like a person who committed a great crime.
“No, Yoon Seung-Jae.”
Yoon Seung-Jae shook as if he was scared to fall and grabbed Ye-Hyeon’s wrist.
Instead of releasing his hand, Ye-Hyeon gently wrapped Yoon Seung-Jae’s chin and lifted it.
A face ruined by tears overflowing under the blurry starlight was revealed.
Ye-Hyeon felt sorry for the eyes that were crying all the time.
“It’s not your fault.”
This time, Ye-Hyeon declared firmly with a smileless face.
Whether he would be a future S-class ranker or a genius with S-class Ability, Yoon Seung-Jae was a child with less than half a year of experience as a hunter.
It was only natural to make mistakes and fail.
“It was a simple accident.”
“But… I said I’d protect you.”
It seemed that Ye-Hyeon could hear what Yoon Seung-Jae couldn’t say.
Ye-Hyeon lowered his head and made eye contact with Yoon Seung-Jae, who was only looking at the floor.
“What are you talking about? You protected me.”
Even at the moment when Ye-Hyeon struggled in pain, Ye-Hyeon saw it.
Yoon Seung-Jae was limping because he was hurt but was looking at Ye-Hyeon desperately.
“I didn’t do anything, *sobs* Like so far.”
Ye-Hyeon smiled brightly with sincerity.
Yoon Seung-Jae cried like a child and hugged Ye-Hyeon’s neck.
Status Window came up one after another, but Ye-Hyeon turned them all off without checking.
It was an indescribable sensation to see someone cry in his arms while the person shed tears.
Ye-Hyeon wanted to stroke Seung-Jae’s back, but his arm didn’t go up.
Ye-Hyeon looked at the night sky.
Ye-Hyeon suddenly felt very nostalgic.
Even after the tears died down, Yoon Seung-Jae hugged Ye-Hyeon and sniffed.
“Stop crying. You won’t be able to open your eyes tomorrow.”
“..I’m not crying.”
Yoon Seung-Jae denied it by rubbing his cheek against Ye-Hyeon’s shoulder, but there was no credibility because his nasal voice was raspy.
“You are not even a five-year-old kid,”
Ye-Hyeon smirked and tapped Yoon Seung-Jae’s back.
Yoon Seung-Jae crouched down and squeezed into Ye-Hyeon’s arms.
Somehow, it became a shape that seemed to be hugged, not a hug.
Ye-Hyeon looked around over Seung-Jae’s shoulder.
Ye-Hyeon wondered what was happening because it was quiet, even if he made a fuss and couldn’t see other people.
“But where did everyone go?”
“To get some water.”
Yoon Seung-Jae mumbled and hugged Ye-Hyeon’s waist even harder.
Finding food inside the dungeon was nearly impossible, but drinking water was easy to obtain.
Usually, they camped by a lake or stream, but he couldn’t hear the sound of water.
Seung-Jae couldn’t move far away from Ye-Hyeon, so the others decided to left Ye-Hyeon with Seung-Jae.
Ye-Hyeon, who roughly understood the situation, slowly turned his neck.
“Oh, I’m uncomfortable.” his neck started to get sore after sitting in a mediocre position for a long time.
His shoulders were wet with tears.
Apart from feeling sorry and grateful, Ye-Hyeon wants to push Yoon Seung-Jae away.
In addition, the vitality has not yet recovered, and more treatment is needed.
Ye-Hyeon slightly twisted his waist while checking the half-filled vitality gauge.
However, Yoon Seung-Jae seemed to have no little intention of letting go.
“Hey, Yoon Seung-Jae.”
It was when Ye-Hyeon carefully called Yoon Seung-Jae.
There was a small sound of activity outside.
Fortunately, it wasn’t a monster’s sign.
“… Ye-Hyeon.” Baek Hae-Won, who returned alone, breathed a sigh of relief when he saw Ye-Hyeon standing up.
The face reflected in the bonfire was a little stiff.
Yoon Seung-Jae slipped away from Ye-Hyeon and sat with his back turned on the two.
Then, with his head down, he wriggled and secretly wiped his wet face.
When Baek Hae-Won came, he must have become shy now, but he couldn’t hide his crying.
Baek Hae-Won looked at the back of Yoon Seung-Jae’s head with a troubled face and tried to pretend not to know.
“How’s the wound? I ran out of potions so I couldn’t treat them completely.”
Ye-Hyeon looked down at his side.
He could see an unsightly wound that hadn’t healed through the torn hem of his clothes.