Baek Tae-beom has always thought that his life was full of misfortune.


 

 

On the other hand, like waiting for Santa on Christmas, he thought that someone might come to save him.
However, he didn’t want it to be his parents, who never contacted him after their divorce, or his relatives, who only felt sorry for Baek Tae-beom and his brother who was left behind.

If that happened, Baek Tae-beom would be miserable.
It was all because of the adults around him that made him think like that at such an early age.
The only thing Baek Tae-beom believed in was his younger brother.
Ever since middle school, he would lie about his age to secretly work part-time jobs.
Sweeping his brother’s hair away from his eyes with his calloused hands, Baek Tae-beom just wanted every day to be the same as usual.

So, when he realized that his brother, who was hit by a car, might never wake up again, Baek Tae-beom felt as if something inside of him had collapsed.
There was only one narrow foothold holding him up from beneath his feet.
Precariously, he had to keep walking on it.
He had to keep his back straight, pretending nothing was wrong.
Baek Tae-beom realized early on that nothing will be solved by crying.

The reason he bleached his hair white was purely because he wanted his younger brother to see it.
It was because he thought it would be nice if they joked around with each other like when they were young and laughed brightly because his hair looked like a grandpa’s.
Baek Tae-beom’s friends evaluated him as very naive and funny, while some have defined him as overly nice.
However, Baek Tae-beom could not understand the meaning of being good.
To dedicate himself only to the present situation, Baek Tae-beom only knew that.

 

 

It was a particularly radiant man who intervened in Baek Tae-beom’s daily life.

Black eyes, black hair, black jacket, and pants.
His pale eyes and lips looked rough and fierce.
He looked anything but friendly.
However, the voice that came out of his mouth, his honest eyes looking at him.
It felt as if he knew Baek Tae-beom and had been watching him for an exceedingly long time.
Time felt like it was finally moving.

 

 

Why do you look at me like that? An answer to the question thrown in the air would not come back.

 

 

Baek Tae-beom himself couldn’t figure out why he felt that way.
However, he always had confidence in him through his gaze, and Baek Tae-beom did not want to betray that conviction.
It was the first time anyone had ever looked at him like that, except for his younger brother.
It was clearly something different from what it had been before.

 

 

Baek Tae-beom…

Thought this man would save him.

 

 

It felt like he was holding a beautifully wrapped gift box.
Excessively, Baek Tae-beom wanted to monopolize Choi Ga-hyun as time went on.
He even thought that he didn’t want him to give anyone else a smiling glance.
Even though they had just met, Baek Tae-beom wanted this savior.

He came to long for him.

 

 

But Baek Tae-beom could not stand next to Choi Ga-hyun.
When he heard Lee Myung-won’s cold words, he felt as if even the last foothold beneath his feet was crumbling.
He shook his head.
No.
He will be able to stand by his side if he tries somehow.
Baek Tae-beom did his best with what was given to him.
But he couldn’t accomplish anything with his efforts.

Baek Tae-beom has always thought that his life was full of misfortune.

It was jealousy that was boiling up.
He just wanted to steal Choi Ga-hyun away and hold him in his arms.
It wasn’t just sexual love.
He didn’t want to share with others the man who might be his only savior.
But, there was nothing Baek Tae-beom could do.
Whenever Choi Ga-hyun asked him to do something, all he had to do was say yes and obediently nod his head.

Why is Hyung like this?

Don’t you want to be alone with me?

Baek Tae-beom realized he wanted Choi Ga-hyun in an unusual way, but he didn’t want to give up just because of that.
He finally got Santa’s gift and he didn’t want to let it go from his hands.
Even the wrapping paper would be cherished and whatever was in it would last a lifetime.
It was not the gift that mattered to Baek Tae-beom, but the person who gave it.
Santa brought Christmas back.

“Tae-beom-ah.”

“Yes, hyung.”

“What do you want to do for Christmas?”

The question that Choi Ga-hyun suddenly asked was sweet.
So sweet.
Like an ant getting entangled in melted sugar, he realized once again that he was something he couldn’t monopolize.

“On Christmas….”

“Ah, right.”

Choi Ga-hyun laughed as if he was falling apart.

“Shall we go see your brother? You should buy a present.”

Only then did Baek Tae-beom realize it.

Choi Ga-hyun was dedicated to Baek Tae-beom.

At first, he couldn’t figure out why.
He thought that the reason why he couldn’t figure it out was that they had only just met.
However, as a month or two went by, seeing Choi Ga-hyun, who stayed silent about his private life, as well as his family, Baek Tae-beom seemed to sink.

 

 

Why are you being so nice to me?

Why do you always believe in me?

Why do you always think I’ll do well?

Why doesn’t Hyung say anything to me?

 

 

The question almost came out of his mouth.
But Baek Tae-beom had to hide it.
If he did something wrong, Choi Ga-hyun might run away.
It was his Eros that ridiculously described him as Santa.
The moment he lights a candle and brings it closer to see his face, he will turn into a dream and fly away.

TL/N: Eros… God of erotic love. 

His savior.

But in the end, he threw up all the words.

“Hyung, why do you always talk like that?”

“Huh?”

“Why do you say that your wounds are just nothing? Why do you always pretend you’re not sick and act like you’ll get better soon? Am I not even allowed to be worried?”

“No, I….”

“This is a handprint.
Someone strangled you with their hands.
But it doesn’t matter? Then what does matter to you?”

Choi Ga-hyun was a mess.
Baek Tae-beom felt like tearing himself apart.
No, he felt as though he was already tearing apart.
Choi Ga-hyun has always been like this.
It was as if he was always just nothing to himself, his own well-being not important to him.
As if he didn’t care at all about Baek Tae-beom, who treasured him.

Baek Tae-beom caressed Choi Ga-hyun’s neck without realizing it.
He saw the man squirm and close his eyes.
He clenched his teeth. It hurts.
It hurts like this.

“Hyung.”

Baek Tae-beom wanted someone to cover his mouth.

“Am I truly an important person to you?”

“Tae-beom-ah.
Listen to me….”

“You’re going to make excuses again.
Just like always!”

His vision blurred, and his lower lip trembled.
He never wanted to look young in front of him, he wanted to look like someone he could lean on.
Baek Tae-beom’s tears flowing out of his eyes felt cruel.
Choi Ga-hyun’s expression looked like he was crushed.

Finally.

His throat felt hotly submerged.
The surroundings seemed to grow dark, but he couldn’t care less.
Only Choi Ga-hyun filled Baek Tae-beom’s view.

“I am nothing to you, aren’t I?” 

“That’s not true! You’re….”

Choi Ga-hyun hesitated.

“You’re, a good… Dongsaeng.”

“Ga-hyun Hyung.”

Baek Tae-beom bowed his head.

“You can stop now.
Helping me out, with that kind of sympathy.”

“What?”

“I know everything.
You’re helping me just because you’re a nice guy.
You don’t have any feelings for me.”

“What do you mean by that?”

“You still have no idea?”

Baek Tae-beom smiled faintly.

“Hyung, I love you.”

 

 

 

And everything changed.

Baek Tae-beom was the first to know that a person can bleed so horribly.
He reflexively embraced the person who fell in front of him and shouted as he saw his face turning white and his eyes gradually closing.
He couldn’t remember properly.
No, he couldn’t remember.
It was all just red.
As if red flowers were blooming on the black earth.
He struggled to stop it somehow, but it couldn’t have worked.
Because Baek Tae-beom had no luck or ability.

The only thing Baek Tae-beom could do was pray to his constellation.

Since you are so omnipotent, because you are an all-powerful God.
Please, it doesn’t matter what happens to me, please save this man.

But no answer came.
It was getting cold all over.
He shouted and hugged him so desperately.
It felt like his neck and ears were going to explode.
His shoulders trembled.
Baek Tae-beom realized that his sole foothold had collapsed.

 

 

[The conditions have been met and the skill, Hermit is revealed.]

[Locked stats are released.]

[You have acquired a new skill.]

[Skill : Guardian]

[You have acquired a new skill.]

[Skill : Madness]

[You have acquired a new skill.]

[Skill: King’s Blade]

[You have acquired a new skill.]

.

.

.

Translucent windows filled his vision.
Baek Tae-beom looked at them foolishly.
Things he couldn’t obtain when he desperately wanted to stand by Choi Ga-hyun’s side, were given to him like a reward only after Choi Ga-hyun’s death.

However.

Did it make any difference?
 

Baek Tae-beom didn’t even know what was being cut by his sword.
Endless despair and pain engulfed him.
People’s shouts and monsters’ seething cries all sounded the same to his ears.

“Baek Tae-beom-ssi!”

Baek Tae-beom was grabbed by his shoulders and had no choice but to get up.
It was only then that he realized what he had done.
Surrounding Choi Ga-hyun’s body, which was lying quietly, the corpses of people and monsters with their limbs cut off were mixed and scattered all over.
In fact, it was ambiguous to say they were corpses.
It was just chunks of meat.

However, Yoo Jin-woo could not even be found in the mountain of corpses.

“What are you doing now?!”

“Hyung… hyung….”

“Look around.
Do you think Choi Ga-hyun would have wanted something like this to happen?”

Baek Tae-beom finally came to his senses.
He dropped the sword he was holding and knelt in front of Choi Ga-hyun, shaking off Lee Myung-won’s hand.

“Hyung, Ga-hyun hyung….”

However, the moment he brushed Choi Ga-hyun’s cheek with his fingertips, dust flew away.
Choi Ga-hyun’s body turned into dust like the bodies of monsters and disappeared.
The only thing left was the ring he had put on Choi Ga-hyun’s finger.
Baek Tae-beom, who lost everything in an instant, could only look down at his hands.

He couldn’t even hear Lee Myung-won’s shouts.

Baek Tae-beom’s savior was no longer in this world.

 

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