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    Loves Error

    It was about six months later that their secret was discovered. It seemed that the person who knew the most about the ecology of dragons in the mansion was Liev, who had received information from the author. However, the Count was not completely ignorant either. 

    “At this point, it would be time for the signs to appear.” 

    When dragons imprint on creatures other than dragons, they try to manifest the appearance of the species they are imprinted on. They instinctively behave similarly to be accepted by the group and grow without revealing that they are of a species of a different race. 

    “Why haven’t there been any signs yet? Is there something wrong?”

    Fortunately, the Count did not suspect Liev, but his worries and concerns were growing day by day. Liev eventually revealed to the Count the fact that Renard could transform into a human whether Liev liked it or not. He didn’t want the Count to send Renard to another researcher to address his concerns. 

    “Oh! That’s great news! I’ve been waiting for this!” 

    The Count was very pleased and gave Renard new clothes, writing utensils, and books as gifts. Liev sighed inwardly. Would it be good to receive something like this from a trashy villain? Eventually, the experiment began, and Liev bit his lip as he watched Renard, who was in pain every night because he was trying hard to endure it and didn’t want to disappoint him. 

    Developing resistance to poison is not necessarily a bad thing. Think of it as a kind of immunity injection or vaccine. Liev tried to rationalize, but he couldn’t help but watch Renard suffer. It’s not the right time yet, so there’s nothing I can do. Liev was still a child under the age of ten years old, and it was impossible to run away with Renard in this form. 

    Renard, who fell asleep from crying, clung desperately to Liev as if he didn’t want to be separated, even for a moment. 

    “……” 

    Please wait a little longer until I grow up a bit more. Just a little more. Until I can take you to the top of the snowy mountain, As the experiment was ongoing, both Renard and Liev grew a little taller. 

    Various marks that covered Renard’s arms disappeared and reappeared, disappearing and reappearing again and again. The results of the experiment were always different. The Count’s orders grew more and more unstable.

    “Hurry! Increase the dosage!” 

    Pretending to obey the command, Liev secretly dumped the dosage that Renard could not handle yet. Thinking that the lack of immediate effects was due to Liev’s incorrect error, the furious Count vented his anger. Every time Renard sobbed and apologized, Liev pulled him into a hug and whispered to him. 

    “It’s okay, you didn’t do anything wrong.” 

    Then he secretly extended his middle finger towards the back of the Count’s head. 

    Life in the laboratory could not be described as happy and pleasant. Nevertheless, it would be okay, whispering that he could endure it because the tiny presence in your arms was so delicate and lovable. The thought of protecting this little creature gave Liev strength again. 

    “Liev! What is happiness?” 

    One night, when Renard asked about a word from a fairy tale book he read before going to sleep, Liev answered after thinking for a while. 

    “It’s a state filled with joyful and exciting things every day.”

    Liev, who had never thought about the meaning of happiness, responded awkwardly when Renard laughed and spoke. 

    “Then, am I happy with Liev?”

    “…….” 

    Liev couldn’t answer right away. No, this isn’t happiness. Happiness is freely soaring with wings spread wide enough to cover the sky and reaching towards the ends of the universe. Not being trapped in this cramped attic, subjected to torture-like experiments and being used as a tool of war by humans. 

    But with a shy smile and the warmth of Renard snuggling into his arms, Liev couldn’t say anything. 

    I will make you happy. And, of course, I won’t be included in that happy future. If everything succeeds as planned, I’ll return to being an extra, a commoner worker who is not properly mentioned in the novel. 

    Well, the main characters won’t have anyone to fight against and will probably live well on their own.

    It was none of his business that the original story was twisted or changed. Anyway, he was an extra who would not be noticed even if he died. Since he was given the opportunity to keep Renard from dying, he planned to make the most of that opportunity. 

    “You’ll be much happier than you are now.”

    With a somewhat strange answer, Liev hugged Renard tightly, and Renard nodded with a small smile. The small body radiated warmth, and Liev’s cheeks blushed. He felt a little afraid of that adorable smile. 

    At first, wild animals that would growl at the sight of people gradually became accustomed to humans as their time at the animal center lengthened. Especially those who entered at a young age sometimes followed caretakers as if they were their parents. Each time they showed blind trust in the belief that they would be taken care of and not harmed, feelings of guilt and concern crossed Liev’s heart. 

    How can you follow me like this? He felt a feeling of guilt at the thought that he could not repay such trust. I’m just passing by to help you for a little while. Don’t rely too much on me. Whenever he had to consider pushing Renard away, his heart weakened first. 

    Liev tried to estimate when the rampage caused by Kevades in the original story would happen. There were only about eight years left until then. He had no choice but to endure until then. 

    To protect Renard, Liev needed to become wiser. If the Count were to notice his plans first, everything would be in vain. 

    *** 

    During the festival, the city was bustling all day and night. Merchants selling fruits, toys for kids, jewelry, and more are loudly calling out to attract customers. In the center of the village, there were puppet shows and other performances at specific times.

    “It seems like there are more people than usual this year.” 

    Someone responded to a colleague who casually murmured.

    “With the harvest we’ve had, everyone’s got plenty of money to spend here.”

    As it turned out, the Kingdom of Airen experienced an unprecedented harvest. Airen, frequently invaded by external forces, was a country with limited resources, and people who were always hungry now had the opportunity to eat to their heart’s content, getting caught up in the festival atmosphere. Nobles and even the royal family were busy with the grand festivals held throughout the kingdom. 

    But there was one person who unexpectedly faced an unforeseen situation due to this unexpected change, Count Vasil. In the Count’s Vasil estate, there has been a famous forest with beautiful scenery since ancient times. In the past, nobles from all over the country used to visit to enjoy the autumn atmosphere, but recently, the forest has slowly become abandoned. Suddenly, the king announced that he would visit for the first time in a long time to revive the old traditional customs of his ancestors.

    However, it was clear that the real purpose behind his visit was not just some sightseeing but to keep an eye on whether Count Vasil was scheming something suspicious. 

    The Count became impatient and quickly tried to erase the traces of the secret laboratory. Even if he relocated the laboratory later, how would he deal with those two? Faced with urgency, Count Vasil, while searching for a suitable place to hide the seemingly two ordinary children, Lady Priscilla hastily came up with a plan. 

    “There’s a big festival happening near my hometown these days. If we take them to my hometown, nobody will know. It’s so noisy and crowded there that incidents happen a lot. The security forces don’t even have time to pay attention unless they are in the area where the report came in. 

    Count Vasil thought for a moment. What if someone recognized the black dragon and kidnapped or killed it? However, at least on the surface, both were ordinary young children, and even if they were children, a dragon was a dragon. Unless someone was a sage-level magician, it was impossible to sense their energy and detect that the young dragon was not human. 

    “All right, let’s hide them there.” 

    And so, Liev and Renard suddenly found themselves unexpectedly in a short-lived refuge for a week. 

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