Predatory Marriage — Chapter 164. Irreversible Past
Translator: Atlas / Editor: Regan
But it wasn’t so. The ripples from the changes she caused continued, even when she couldn’t see them. The hard road she had traveled had not been in vain.
That meant so much to her and satisfied something so deep inside her that Leah couldn’t help smiling, and the Kurkans’ eyes grew wide at the sight. There was a sound of astonishment as they stared.
Haban clapped his hands.
“Come on, let’s get to work!”
The sorcerers immediately began their final preparations, drawing intricate patterns on the floor as they discussed them among themselves. As she waited for them to finish, Leah murmured to Haban.
“Am I so strange?” She asked. “Genin told me that sometimes Kurkans marry people from other parts of the continent, like her husband.”
“Of course, but…” Haban pondered for a moment. “There is no one as white as you. Also, since your hair is silver, it makes you even more striking.”
“Also, you’re a very beautiful woman.” Leah almost nodded without thinking, but caught herself. Haban grinned like a naughty boy. “And it’s not common to marry someone who’s not a Kurkan. Genin’s husband doesn’t come out often. I’m sure there aren’t many Kurkans who know what he looks like.”
Leah blinked. Suddenly she remembered the grim expression that had flickered through Genin’s face when she spoke of her husband.
“…By any chance, has anything happened to them?” she asked carefully.
“If it’s something complicated, you don’t need to tell me.” She added immediately.
Haban pressed his cheeks with his hands and sighed. “You’d find out soon enough that I’ll tell you.”
Among the Kurkans, there were purists. They believed that Kurkans shouldn’t interbreed with the people of the mainland, and should only marry among themselves to preserve the purity of their blood. They were proud of the powerful beast blood that spoke of their true nature. They condemned marriages with the peoples of the rest of the continent.
The former King was a purist. Due to the great power in his blood, from birth he was considered the next king, and as soon as his coming of age ceremony was completed, he began a struggle for dominance and ultimately ascended the throne.
The moment he took the throne, the tragedy began.
The King despised half-breeds and openly discriminated against the non-Kurkans who had been brought from other parts of the continent. Though at first he only treated them contemptuously, as he consolidated power, his actions became more extreme. The purists who supported him walked arrogantly through the desert, and the Kurkans who had married non-Kurkans began to worry for the safety of their partners.
Genin and Haban, escorts of the King, hated the change in his behavior. It came to a head when they learned that the King was selling Kurkans to Byun Gyeongbaek and other slave traders.
He sold half-breeds for a lot of money. And not once or twice, but constantly. Genin and Haban protested furiously, but their protests had no effect. The King was a tyrant, and the purists supported him.
Genin’s fear for her husband increased every day, and finally she decided to leave the desert where she had lived all her life. Haban decided to go with her, sickened by the King and his followers.
They were caught before they had to escape. It was a day Genin would never forget. The price they paid was very great.
—Please… no, please…!
That was the day Genin bowed her head to the man she hated so much. She begged, beating her forehead on the ground.
—Please punish me, please, King, have mercy…!
But the cruel nature of the King did not grant forgiveness. He showed Genin the consequences of her betrayal.
Genin stared. She stared until her eyes reddened and the vessels there ruptured. She stared until tears of blood flowed down her cheeks.
Every time she thought of that day, Genin’s mind went blank and vague. What she had done was irreversible. All she could do was regret.
“I have arrived.” Genin said as she opened the door. The man in the flower garden replied cheerfully and moved toward her, pushing his wheelchair. Genin looked away in embarrassment and thrust out a bouquet of flowers to him. His eyes widened.
“I picked them on the way here,” she said.
“Genin!” He took the bouquet of peonies in surprise. “It hasn’t been long since the last bouquet of flowers.”
“Peonies are beautiful. They’re also one of Leah’s favorite flowers.”
“I see.” He smiled softly and smelled the flowers, then extended his arm to Genin. With the ease of practice, she lifted him.
The blanket covering his lap fell to the floor, and his pant legs dangled, empty.
He had no legs.