60 To Dream Is To Hope

    Monto felt his body tremble in fear as he thought of everything Irina said. There was no way everything she said can all be a coincidence!

    Monto has heard about mutants having heaven-defying luck as their innate abilities. By virtue of this, the circumstances in surrounding will happen the mutant in one way or another. And anyone who is an enemy with such a person will find their lives going worse.

    Was Zed really blessed with luck as his mutant ability?


    Monto now remembered what Zed said when they were outside Jessica's building:  'I have met quite a lot of gangs in my last few years.'

    Irina sucked in a breath of cold air after Monto told her the conversation. The words of Zed pretty much confirmed her thoughts. She couldn't control her palms from sweating as she thought of the disaster they have avoided.

    Monto was even worse with his back drenched with sweat.

    "How are we supposed to know he is a wolf in sheep's clothing?" Monto muttered, "He acts like he has no support or background but that bastard has the most powerful background I know of."

    "We refuse to believe that anyone with a worse background than us can have more ability. Our arrogance and pride often lead us to doom," Irina said.

    It was not a coincidence that she knew about Zed. As a gang leader, she has to pick targets who can help solve the problem of finances.

    She first noticed the existence of a 'big fish' named Zed, a few months ago, when she was looking for targets to hunt.  She asked herself why was Zed still alive instead of being hunted by others. She thought he escaped attention by luck but then she studied the condition of surrounding in detail. The conclusion of her research left her in a deep shock: the fish was a shark in disguise.

    "Sis, it was good you acted in time," Monto know knew just how stupid he was back then.

    "I guess I am good in reading between the lines unlike many who looked down on Zed and died," Irina tried to joke but there was no smile in her face, "Monto, from now on be careful."

    "Of course!" Monto nodded his head. He swore he will never look for trouble at least not in Zed.

    Alas, Monto learned the lesson far too late. The sting of a wasp has sealed his fate...


    [[Hardware upgraded successfully]] Claudia's voice ringed inside the second underground floor of the villa.

    "Phew~ Finally over," Kiba stretched his hands after adjusting a circuit on a processing unit. A few days ago, he has promised Claudia on upgrading her hardware components. This was necessary since she has to track his caretaker's origin outside the city.

    [[It took you only five hours but here you are complaining again]]

    "I am not complaining," Kiba tried to reason.

    [[Really? Why are you stretching your hands as if you are tired? You didn't get tired after creating the trouble in the wasteland but now you are so tired after only adjusting some 1000 processing units?]]

    "I am just sleepy instead of being tired," Kiba didn't feel the least bit hesitation in lying.

    [[Sleepy? I'm sure you if it was sleeping with a woman you will not feel sleepy at all.]]

    "...I was in wrong." Kiba teleported inside the bedroom.

    [[That reminds me why will you give Monto a slow death? I understand you have to kill him since you never spare anyone with malicious intent towards you, but why not kill directly?]]

    The string of the wasp was filled with a poison which needs two months for activation in the bloodstream. It was created by him years ago in order to avoid suspicion while killing.

    He has to be cautious while dealing with people who have malice towards his Zed form.  There were times when he will directly kill and sometimes create 'accidents' to cause accidental deaths, but there were times when 'natural' deaths were necessary.

    The poison from the mechanical wasp was one such method for causing natural death without leaving any clues.

    "His sister is smart so I need to avoid her suspicion," Kiba answered.

    [[You could have killed the sister and the entire gang as well.  Ah! I forgot! You found her sexy so you can't...]]

    "..." Kiba's cheeks were twitching.

    The truth was he didn't wish to murder the entire gang unless absolutely necessary. Irina has already cut her ties with Jessica and she didn't show any malice towards him, so why kill her? But her brother was different.

    It was his rule to never spare anyone who shows malice towards him. There were no exceptions.

    In fact, he sentenced Monto an easy death compared to Lisa and her team who died in horrifying ways.

    "Killing can be pleasurable but only when the opponent is fun. I enjoyed tormenting Lisa but I know Monto would give me no joy so I don't mind giving him an easy death," Kiba explained his reason.


    Next day at the academy.

    "Do I look like someone who cares about ornaments?" Felicity's eyes were filled with anger as she looked at a silver bracelet in front of her.

    "O-of course not," Zed didn't know how to offer the bracelet he and Claudia created for her safety.  (Chapter 39)

    "Then why are you giving me one?" Felicity asked.

    "It was not me but Claudia who created this so you ask her. I am only doing her bidding," Zed has no remorse in transferring the entire responsibility to Claudia.

    "Really?" Felicity asked with some suspicions. She was rather close to Claudia since she would regularly visit the villa.

    "You can ask her directly if you don't believe me," Zed pressed a button on his cellphone.

    [[Lady Felicity, how have you been?]] Claudia's voice came from the cell phone.

    "Claudia, I would have been fine if not for the bracelet. Is Zed telling the truth?" Felicity asked in a soft voice.

    [[Yes but he missed out a crucial detail]]

    "Hm?" Felicity gazed at Zed. Zed was having a bad premonition from Claudia's words.

    [[He is also wearing a similar bracelet but he has covered it with sleeves.]]

    "Oh?" Felicity quickly checked his right wrist and found a silver bracelet.

    [[Even he is wearing the bracelet so there should be no problem for you as well. I created them as a sign of memento of your friendship.]]

    Claudia knew Felicity will never accept the bracelet if she said it was for her protection so she used another excuse.

    "But..." Felicity wanted to protest but she didn't want to refuse Claudia's kind gesture.

    [[Please wear it for me. If you feel embarrassed, you can always take joy in the fact that Sir Zed is also wearing a similar ornament.]]

    Zed: "..."

    "If you say so then I don't mind!" Felicity quickly wore the bracelet.

    Zed sighed in a breath of relief. He was always afraid she will be in danger with her habit of thrill-seeking so he designed the bracelet for her as a protection.

    It was something which cost him a lot but he didn't mind. In the end, Felicity was perhaps the most important of his life...one of the biggest reason why he still enjoyed living as Zed.


    A few hours later at Dream Rising House.

    Felicity was giving a tour of the villa to Jessica. The latter was surprised by the sheer size of this luxurious villa.

    "Why will you live alone in such a big villa?" Jessica asked Zed. She knew he was rich but never to this extent.

    The villa was created partly on a waterfall and the entire area was like one with nature. Jessica couldn't imagine the extent of money spent to create such a place.

    "As a kid, I dreamed to have my own home. A home where I can sleep without any worry," Zed answered with a smile, "Now that I have the resources, I created this home and satisfied my vanity in the process."

    As a kid,  there were times when he envied the people of the city for they had their own homes and never have to worry about sleeping hungry. The only thing he truly wished back then was for food and a place to sleep without the fear of getting killed.

    As he grew, his dreams grew with him. A man with nothing can only live by his dreams and same was for Zed.

    He dreamed big not because he believed he could make them true, but because they could give him a peaceful sleep. He would be able to forget the pain of reality.

    In the dreams, he would have everything he wanted. A dream filled with the happiness he has always wished for.

    The dreams gave him hope just like the reality gave him despair. A reality offering him nothing but a hungry stomach and torn clothes along with the abuses from the caretaker and overlords.

    There were times when he wished to commit suicide but then he would remember his dreams. Dreams so unrealistic that it made him laugh but yet gave him a hope for a better future.

    If not today then perhaps tomorrow...Don't give up just yet.

    "With the times, my dreams have changed and evolved but there is one thing which still remains the same. They are the only reason why I still live."
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