Dear Anonymous Sponsor - Chapter 3
Translated by: Miss Lassie
Her ordinary brown eyes were gone, and a pair of bright red eyes stared back at her in the mirror.
The strange glow from her eyes made her look mysterious, and her skin looked paler and smoother under the dim moonlight.
‘…an ominous creature, a witch who eats people.’
No matter how many times she looked at herself in the mirror, those words fit her appearance even when they weren’t true.
Even her black hair was uncommon enough already, but not that rare. She heard that there were more black-haired people in the east.
However, nothing was ever rarer than her crimson eyes.
It was a physical characteristic that becomes part of a person’s identity.
Her crimson eyes were a distinct feature of an ethnic minority in the Kingdom of Kilgeny called Main, which was now almost extinct. The necklace left by Liesolette played an essential role in helping the Mains hide their identities and blend in with ordinary people.
Since their direct bloodline’s extermination due to the witch hunt that took place hundreds of years ago, the Mains’ only remaining power was psychic-based abilities. Like temporarily bewitching an opponent, infiltrating consciousness, and light brainwashing. Most of their abilities ceased at this point.
Her ability wasn’t anything impressive, but her ominous aura still warranted persecution.
When buds sprout, they get trampled on. Most talented people, especially the Mains, were treated less than human beings in the western continent.
However, in modern times, people from Ailance and Oberon’s perceptions have been reversed. Supernatural abilities were deemed far more impressive than any advancements in science and technology. It was only a century ago when these abilities began to transform from the devil’s curse to God’s blessings in the people’s eyes.
Thus, in the present age, when the world’s most powerful nations were hungry for more power and colonization, the Kingdom of Kilgeny’s Mains’ abilities were in great value and demand.
For that reason alone, Ailance marched to the capital and conquered Kilgeny. Even having one Main alone is a great advantage no matter how you use them later.
Since Kilgeny’s fall, there has only been one person who recognized Judith’s identity.
An image emerged from the depths of her fragmented memories—a voice referring to her as Kilgeny’s Main and the sound of guns that followed.
Judith calmly recalled her memories. After getting captured, she took off her necklace and tried to escape using her abilities, but someone still caught her.
That person must have been from Ailance. He must have been the one who ordered the soldiers to have her life saved from that fatal gunshot wound. Only a high-ranking military officer would be in a position to give a command like that.
She was fortunate enough to have escaped from them. Surely they remember her, and she hoped she never had to see them again. Crossing the ocean to seek asylum in the neutral Federal State was an excellent choice.
Naturally, this conclusion led to another suspicion from her.
‘…maybe my sponsor is aware of this.’
Otherwise, there was no way for her to seek asylum while confined to an Ailance military hospital. She couldn’t have possibly lived a normal life.
‘If I had stayed in the western continent, I would’ve been in great danger.’
Even though the Mains’ talents and abilities proved valuable, their human rights were still nonexistent. The Mains have only slightly elevated from being monsters that God had abandoned to usable slaves. If they had taken her to Ailance, she would’ve been turned into a lab rat and subjected to countless experiments.
So is her sponsor on her side?
Is it purely just a favor or…?
Does that mean that another force is trying to take advantage of her?
‘Don’t trust anyone, Judith. Even a person from your own country!’
Liesolette’s last cry echoed in her ears and lingered for a while. There were valid reasons for her to jump to conclusions.
But after coming to this place, she was getting exhausted from being suspicious all the time.
Judith shut the door of the closet and avoided looking at her crimson eyes in the mirror. Her head hurt from thinking too much and not being able to predict the future.
That night, Judith picked up a pen for the first time in a while.
December 25, 1920
Dear Anonymous Sponsor,
Judith had never written a letter before. Also, she was only good at listening and speaking the Federal State’s official language but was poor at reading and writing it. She hesitated for a moment but decided to write and translate it in her native language.
The nib, which was hovering on the paper hesitantly, started moving slowly.
After sailing for fifteen days and disembarking the ferry, I rode in an unfamiliar car and traveled the whole day to Kinsley. Miss Wortherford suggested I write a reply to you, so I picked up a pen and wrote this letter for you. I hope you read this.
First of all, I want to say thank you for your help. I heard that you’re a distant relative of mine. Thanks for reaching out and not turning a blind eye to me.
After writing it down, her hand holding the pen paused for a while.
It moved again only after the ink dropped and left a round mark on the paper.
But to be honest, I don’t trust you yet.
Judith wasn’t some naive and innocent girl who believed that her sponsor suddenly came to her aid out of pure luck. She didn’t even believe in Santa’s existence.
Her suspicions poured out like water.
Why are you helping me? What do you know about me? Do you know that I’m from Kilgeny? Have you ever seen my eyes? Are you on the Ailance’s side?
It was scary thinking about all of this. It was as dangerous as the western continent and this unfamiliar country.
She wished Santa Claus existed. She wanted to make a wish like a child. Judith swallowed the words she couldn’t write on the paper.
‘I want to see my sister Liese.’
Her tears smeared the ink that had spread on the paper. At some point, she tried to hold herself back from crying.
She didn’t need anything else. She had no lingering affection for her homeland, Kilgeny, and there were no feelings of patriotism. Powerful nations who knew the Mains’ value were eager to find them. But in Kilgeny, a small kingdom close to isolation, they were still ostracized for their red eyes, labeling them as witches.
It was her half-sister Liesolette who saved her from her imminent death.
Liesolette pushed her younger sister into an underground shelter as the landmine exploded and burst into flames.
“Stay alive, and we’ll meet.”
She didn’t get to keep her last words. Suddenly, terrible loneliness flooded Judith’s emotions.
Her sister can no longer be her pillar of support. It was up to Judith to decide who to trust and who to have her guard up. The moment she chose to settle in the Federal State, she had already made her choice.
If it were the same enemy, it would’ve been better if a nightmare of unknown veils hid its true self than a wild cat charging and exposing its teeth. At least it’s sweeter this way.
Judith rubbed her eyes with the back of her hand and drew a horizontal line twice over the sentences she had written. She moved her hand impulsively, and the following words naturally flowed after she recalled her memories of Liesolette.
I don’t know you at all. Maybe you’re my enemy, but I won’t deny that you’ve helped me out a lot.
I don’t feel so alone now, knowing that there’s someone I can send a letter to somewhere in the world.
The pen that quickly filled words on the paper fell to the floor.
Thank you for bringing me a miracle. Just as you asked, I will live a normal life this time. But I think tonight will be a long sleepless night.
Please sleep well on my behalf.
The following day, Judith heard a knock on her door.
Before she could even open the door, an excited voice came out.
“It’s late, but Merry Christmas, Jude!”
Judith stared at the person who appeared before her. He was a boy with brown hair and eyes a little darker than his hair. They were similar in height, and he had almond-shaped eyes with the corners of his mouth raised in a playful expression.
The boy reached out his hand.
“Nice to meet you. I’m your new brother. My name is Millian Wortherford, and I’m living above you! It’s just upstairs.
“Nice… to meet you.”
When Judith touched her face, Millian grabbed her hands and shook them up and down, rattling her to her surprise. Just how strong was he?
“I told the director I’d be your partner since we’re the same age. It’s pretty uncommon for new people of our generation to come into the nursery! Shall we go in and eat breakfast?”
Millian held a tray with two covered plates and a basket full of rye bread. When Judith stepped out of the doorway, he came in without hesitation, unfolded the bed table, and put down the tray. Upon opening the lid, the smell of savory lamb soup wafted through the air, stimulating their senses.
“What are you doing? Come in and eat. We usually eat breakfast together at the restaurant on the first floor, but you haven’t recovered yet, so I brought the food up. It’s not the right place for a patient to eat breakfast. Thirty kids run around spilling crumbs, and it’s the role of older siblings to sit them in place and feed them. You’re still new, so you need some time to adjust. The soup is going to get cold. You should eat quickly!”
Millian gave Judith a quick rundown of how things worked in the nursery without giving her time to gather her thoughts. He caught her looking dazed, standing by the bed across from him.
With a spoon in her hand, Judith ate breakfast with Millian. It was a pleasant morning meal indeed.
After eating, Millian skillfully sorted out the empty bowls and put them out the door. Then he pulled up a chair and sat close to the bed with the back facing forward.
Millian grinned as he pulled out his pen and chart.
“Well then, let’s get started. First, your name, Judith. Do you have a surname?”
She wondered about her name yesterday, probably because they pronounced it softly in the Federal State. Judith bit her lips and shook her head.
“No, I discarded it.”
“Then you’ll naturally become Judith Wortherford.”
Millan wrote her name at the top of the chart containing a table, and Judith glanced over it. Attached beside it was her black and white photo taken when she applied for a Federal State visa.
Information about her age and gender was there. The fields for her date of birth, height, weight, and reason for coming to Kinsley were blank.
‘Why is he writing them down…’
A sense of danger suddenly alerted her. Something felt off.
She came to a nursery, not a military camp. She wasn’t a monster that needed urgent attention. She felt like she was sitting in front of an interrogator.
Her feelings of being at ease started building up into fear again.