Home Post 1493-chapter-106


Fortunately, Jahan quickly regained his senses. Senu looked at the collapsed man-eating plant with disgust and asked.

“What on earth is this creature? Are such plants common in the Nervana Forest?”

Fiarca, brushing off the remaining tendrils from Jahan’s body, replied.

“It’s not common. This kind of thing shouldn’t be near the entrance. They usually exist in clusters… this is unusual.”

“Wait, the wolf is still trapped!”

Enya noticed something struggling and whining in the darkness and shouted. It was the wolf that had attacked the plant, trying to devour Jahan.

“It helped Jahan. We need to save it.”

At her urging, Silanda used the end of the torch as a lever to create a gap. The wolf, freed with difficulty, shook its body and scratched the ground with its claws.

Senu muttered as he observed.

“It’s a black-clawed wolf cub.”

Silanda said with a frown.

“It looks different. It’s not black.”

“It’s probably a mutation. Occasionally, they are born with such vibrant patterns.”

Just as Senu said, the wolf’s fur was a mix of black, yellow, and white, making it stand out significantly from ordinary wolves.

Silanda speculated.

“Could it have followed us all the way from the plains?”

It seemed she might be right.

Enya recalled Fiarca muttering about the smell of wolves while sharpening her arrowheads the previous night.

‘Who would have thought there’d actually be a wolf nearby?’

Even after getting Jahan back on his feet, the group remained at the site for a while. Everyone was on edge after the incident at midnight.

“I went to relieve myself before switching with Enya, and suddenly, I was lifted with my ankle caught by a tendril. Before I knew it, I was being eaten. It was so horrifying, like…”

Jahan shivered as he recalled the sensation of being inside the plant’s mouth.

“I felt like I was being punished for something I didn’t even do.”

Fiarca responded nonchalantly.

“One of the notorious nicknames for the cavaligo is a ‘punishing plant.’ It doesn’t just dissolve and consume its prey down to the bones; it etches the ‘evidence’ into its body.”

Then, she took the torch from Silanda and brought it close to the sprawling trunk and leaves of the plant.

The group gasped and grimaced at the sight revealed by the torchlight.

Etched into one of the leaves was an eerily detailed human face. It was undeniably the face of a person.

“What, what is that…?”

Enya asked, barely suppressing her nausea.

“What do you think? That’s the face of someone it previously devoured.”

Jahan’s face turned pale. The realization that his face could have ended up on those leaves had they been a bit slower filled him with dread.

“Cavaligo can survive on just water and sunlight, but when it consumes meat, it grows at an incredible rate. And it always leaves evidence of its meals etched into its leaves and trunk. Being eaten by a Cavaligo is like being imprisoned in an inescapable jail even after death.”

Silanda, looking disgusted, spat on the ground and muttered a curse.

“D*mn it! That’s just revolting.”

Just as Fiarca had said, other leaves and trunks of the plant bore the detailed shapes of animals it had consumed.

“Are, are there more of these plants ahead?”

When Senu asked Fiarca with a trembling voice, she scoffed at his question. Her tone carried a mocking undertone as if she found his fear amusing.

“If you’re scared of this, you’re not going to handle what’s ahead. There’s an entire zone in the heart of the forest filled with nothing but Cavaligo. It’s massive, covering a vast area. I told you, these things usually live in clusters.”

Enya was too shocked to respond.

“In ancient Nervana, it’s said that criminals were sent there to be punished by the Cavaligo. It was an old legend, and it’s no longer practiced.”

Jahan shivered at the mere thought of what Fiarca had described.

After a while, the group gathered themselves and returned to their campsite. Dawn had already broken. No one was in any condition to sleep after the encounter with the carnivorous plant, which had left a huge shock on them.

They decided to pack up earlier than usual and continue their journey.

“But what about that wolf?”

The young wolf that had clearly followed them into the forest and was cautiously trailing behind.

Fiarca replied coldly.

“We can’t afford to take care of it.”

Enya agreed with her, yet she couldn’t help but look back occasionally at the wolf, which would occasionally whimper, reminding them of its presence. The wolf didn’t appear aggressive. In fact, it had helped save Jahan.

Senu spoke up.

“Wolves with such striking markings are usually abandoned by their packs early on. Their distinctive appearance lowers the success rate of hunts. Even if they aren’t abandoned, they’re likely ostracized within the pack.”

Enya shivered at the thought.

“It’s strange, though. Even weaker wolves wouldn’t usually follow humans this closely.”

She glanced back again at Senu’s words. The wolf was limping, likely from an injury sustained earlier, but it persistently followed them.

“Uh, actually…”

Jahan began hesitantly as if confessing a secret.

“I might have, sort of, fed it on the way here…”


Silanda shouted.

Jahan jumped and shouted, “It wasn’t on purpose! I left some apples behind, and it took them… I thought it was a forest monkey! I just… I was curious and shared a bit of my food.”

Not just Silanda but everyone stared at him in shock.

“That was reckless, Jahan. What if it hadn’t been a wolf but a larger beast tracking us?”

Senu scolded Jahan, making his face turn as red as an apple.

“No matter how young or pitiful it looks, a beast is still a beast. It’s better to eliminate the risk early.”

Fiarca, jaw set with determination, reached for her bow and arrows slung across her back.

“Should I kill it now?”

“No! That’s too cruel!”

Jahan protested, spreading his arms to block the wolf pup’s path. It was clear he had already grown attached to the wolf that had saved him.

As if understanding their conversation, the wolf pup lowered its tail and rolled onto its back, exposing its belly and whimpering softly as if pleading for mercy.

Enya felt sympathy at that gesture.

“Um… Fiarca, what if we just let it follow us? It doesn’t seem to be causing any harm.”

Enya looked at the wolf. It was small and thin but didn’t appear malnourished, likely finding food on its own in addition to what Jahan had given it.

Fiarca narrowed her eyes but relented with a grumble.

“I’ve warned you. If anything happens because of that wolf, I’m not taking responsibility.”

As soon as she finished speaking, the wolf wagged its tail, almost as if it understood Fiarca.


* * *


“Spot! Here, try this too.”

From that day on, Jahan called the wolf Spot and began caring for it attentively. The name suited its mottled fur perfectly.

The wolf followed Jahan around like a trained horse.

“What a peculiar creature.”

Fiarca was still not thrilled about the wolf’s presence but no longer voiced her objections.

“Just keep it away from me.”

Silanda, on the other hand, reacted with horror whenever the wolf approached, clearly uncomfortable around it. Despite her aversion, the wolf seemed to enjoy following her, wagging its tail in friendly interest.

The wolf was even friendlier towards Enya, who was kind to it, and often circled around Fiarca, though it never ventured close to Senu.

Enya found it strange.

“He must be more aware, cough…of the disease than anyone.”

Senu muttered to himself as he observed the wolf’s behavior.

Listening to him, Enya considered that he might be right. His condition had noticeably worsened lately. His labored breathing was so loud that it made others around him feel out of breath just listening.

Silanda took meticulous care of him, ensuring he didn’t falter. She took one of his arms and placed it around her shoulder.

“Lean on me, Senu,”

Enya was impressed by how devotedly Silanda looked after Senu.

‘Even if he’s cured, it’s impossible to ignore the contagious nature of Senu’s disease.’

Senu seemed aware of this and often tried to push Silanda away, but on days when his body wouldn’t cooperate, he had no choice but to accept her help.

“…Just for a moment, then.”

Senu muttered, leaning on Silanda’s shoulder.

Enya found another thing puzzling.

Her own physical condition.

‘Something feels off…’

Recently, Enya noticed strange changes in her body. Not long after entering the forest, she endured muscle pain and bug bites, losing sleep over them for weeks. However, her body quickly adapted to the changes.

Although she seemed leaner, she oddly felt more energetic.

Calluses formed on her hands from carefully cutting branches and peeling fruit, making her hands tougher. Her vision seemed sharper, her mind clearer and more refreshed. Overall, she felt more vigorous.

Another peculiar phenomenon was that the grass seemed to move aside wherever she stepped.

‘It’s probably just my imagination…’

Enya kept this strange occurrence to herself. She feared that her fixation on being the ‘Daughter of the Forest’ was causing her mind to play tricks on her. She wanted to dismiss these oddities as mere illusions and focus on their journey.

However, these peculiar incidents didn’t stop there.

Occasionally, Enya would hear strange sounds, making her pause and instinctively glance toward the deepest parts of the forest, to which no one else paid any attention.

She felt as if something was watching her.

There were times she almost followed the sounds before being scolded by Silanda for wandering off.

‘Am I going mad? Or is it…?’

Her worries were not over. The most implausible and incredible things were gradually becoming evident to her.

Rustle, rustle.

Enya often found herself mesmerized by Fiarca’s fluid and graceful movements, then reluctantly lowered her gaze to her own unsteady legs. Each limping step was a reminder of her frailty.

Yet, a singular, undeniable truth made her heart pound with a fierce intensity.

“My legs feel lighter…”