Chapter 1053 – The red mark spreads
In total three people who had gone missing months ago, had returned to the Shelter. Apparently, they had been found as they wandered through the forest and stumbled upon the gate. Those at the shelter recognized them as one of their own straight away.
When the people had gone missing, Ko had ordered the guards to remember their faces, so if they were spotted at any second, they would be recognised. Out of the three people, there was one young female, an older male, and a Traveler. They had been brought into the faction and had been placed in Ko’s office for his return.
Entering the room with Hayley following him, Ko saw the three of them and looked almost disappointed.
“We have tried speaking to them sir, but none of them remember anything about what happened. They don’t know where they went or anything about the others that went missing as well.” One of the men said.
“If they can’t remember anything, then these people are useless!” Ko shouted. “How are we meant to find the other missing people? Those idiot muscle heads, they don’t even care about this Shelter or anyone inside, instead they’re just obsessed with finding the Demon tier beast.”
Hayley, watching this bi-polar act coming from Ko, thought it was quite strange. Did he care for the people or did he not? When he first came in, rather than pleased, he seemed upset. Shouldn’t he be happy that at least these people came back, or was there something else on his mind?
“Before, you said there was something strange about them.” Hayley interrupted. “Is it just the missing memories, or is there still something else?”
The men looked towards Ko, who gave the nod to tell her all the details.
“Although the memories are a concerning thing. Each of their responses varies from different levels. The young girl can communicate with us fine. The older gentleman seems to understand what we are saying but when ever he tries to speak he struggles, while the last one…”
Hayley could already see what they were about to say. His eyes looked dead lost, while his pupils were enlarged. He was staring at the wall in front of them while dribbles of saliva were falling from his mouth.
“And there is something else as well.” The man said, as he lifted up each of their s.h.i.+rts. Going around to the back of them, Hayley could see what the man was referring to. It was a strange red marking on their back starting from the very bottom.
It branched out like a tree route spreading branches across the back.
‘Is something taking over their body?’ She thought. The young girl who was still able to speak, the marking was the smallest having only traveled part way up her back, while the others had progressed more, with the Travellers nearly reaching the top of his head.
Seeing this, the girl started to burst into tears.
“Am I going to end up like him?” She started to cry.
“You have help now. We are going to try our best, okay.” Hayley replied, not wanting to make any promises. This was something she had never seen before in all of her time working as a doctor and when she had learnt the healing abilities.
It didn’t look like an ability or an injury. She pressed her hand against the young girl’s back, and started to touch the area. When she touched one of the red-like branches, it moved slightly.
“Ahh!’ The girl screamed and was already covered in sweat from the first touch. Even now without touching the marking, it appeared as if the girl was in pain. The older man was in a worse state, constantly wincing as he stood, however the Traveller looked as if he felt nothing.
Placing her hands above, Hayley started to activate her ability. Trying to heal the wound. A soothing feeling came over the girl and she slowly lowered her hands attempting to heal it again.
“Tell me what you feel?” Hayley asked.
“The pain is going away.” She replied.
Although the pain was going away, the marking still appeared to be there. Stopping her ability, the mark still remained and the pain had returned. This didn’t look like it was something she could remove with her ability.
“I think it will be best to keep an eye on them. See how much time we have and how quickly the marking starts to spread. In the meantime, I will ask one of my people to come and give them healing from time to time. It won’t do much, but at least it will stop them from feeling too much pain.” Hayley said.
Soon after, Robin had entered the room, and took a look at the three people who had returned.
“Ko, I think me and you should have a talk about what the next move is to be.” Robin said, and the two of them had left the room to have their own private conversation.
Now in a room a little further away from where the patients were, the two of them could talk.
“Did you manage to find out anything from the three of them?” Robin asked.
“No, it seems like all of their memories of when they were taken away were gone. They can’t even remember their family members that are in the shelter, and only one of them knows how to speak.” Ko replied.
Robin gave out a big sigh again.
“I’m afraid we might have to stop focusing on those missing from the Shelter. At the moment we have other troubles that are a bigger priority. I believe you have people outside of the faction searching for the lost ones now, correct? It would be best if you ask them to return and prepare to defend the place.
“With all of the Orbus faction and having just successfully defended an attack they shouldn’t come back any time soon. My plan is to suggest to Quinn that the Graylash family and the Cursed faction hunt the Demon tier beast as quickly as possible.”
Biting his lip, Ko couldn’t believe what Robin was suggesting.
“Weren’t you the one that put my faction in charge of this place!” Ko replied. “When the Graylash family are done hunting this Demon tier beast, are you going to help us search for the missing people, are you going to protect this place?”
“Are you really being so foolish right now!?” Robin replied. “We are in the middle of a war. That Demon crystal would help us turn the tide even if it’s just a little bit. If the Dalki aren’t dealt with, then you won’t even have a faction to protect.” Robin shouted, slamming the door as he left the room.
‘That marking, I know I’ve seen it somewhere before, but where?’ Ko thought.
The rest of the Shelter looked to be in better spirits, and the rebuilding of the Shelter was now taking place. Although it was being rebuilt in a different way based on Robin’s orders. It was now being changed into more of a defensive base. Building certain walls and towers for points of attack. While a large building for non-fighters would be placed so they could stay there for the time being.
Just as everyone was getting ready to move from the giant pink tree, there was commotion as people started to talk to one another.
“They returned, the missing people! Some of them have returned!” A gentleman shouted, pointing to the direction of one of the gates.
“Is it true? But no one has returned after months, and now they are returning!” The people spoke.
Some of them were happy that their family members were safe, but they could see that not all of them were quite there. In total twelve of the missing people had returned. The faction members guarded them and escorted them to the Shelter.
Ko knew that this would cause a panic and was why he had kept it a secret about the first three people returning. Now that some had returned, the others who had lost their family members would be asking about where they were as well, and right now they didn’t have answers.
Also the strange marking was worrying him.
“Strange, isn’t it?” Eno said, as he and Quinn were standing there looking at the people trying to take a look at who had returned while they were walking towards the shelter.
“Do you mean their eyes?” Quinn said, noting something was off about them from a distance.
“Not just that? Some of these people had gone missing for months.” Eno replied. “They had to have come from the forest, and while outside how did they survive. Sure there are some Travellers among them, but not all of them are travellers. What about the deadly beasts we just fought, how are these people still alive?”
When the people were brought in, Hayley had taken a look at each of them once again and it was the same thing. Every single one of them had the strange marking on their back. All at different stages, and their state was the same as the other three.
Returning to the girl, she could see that the girl was in more pain than before.
“It hurts..” The girl said quietly, squinting looking up at Hayley.
Looking at her back once again, she could see that the marking had grown.
At a loss of what to do, she didn’t know why, but she had decided to call in a certain person.
“Me? But you know I’m no doctor, right?” Quinn replied, as he walked through the faction halls.
“I know, but I know you have secrets. Maybe you’ve seen this marking before.” Hayley said, knowing it would be a long shot.
Still, Quinn was curious about the people as well and he felt like Hayley was always nice to him during his time in school so he could at least take a look at it.
“So, have you seen it before?” She asked.
“No, I haven’t.” Quinn said, but decided to use his inspect skill to see if there was any other information.
[A powerful mark that continues to grow]
[A mark from a Demon tier beast]
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