He was lost in thought again.
Giles felt happy while spending time with Lily.
But it dawned on him that these meetings could end up hurting her.
The revolution was slowly coming to an end, but there were still people hiding in various parts of the country.
The leadership was now trying to find them.
Lily could be seen as one of the targets of the leadership.
If her whereabouts got exposed…
In any case, if the leadership found out about Lily, they would order Giles to arrest her.
Giles’ spine grew cold.
‘Was it right that I kept coming in and out of this place Maybe it’s because of me that she’s going to be exposed.’
“Giles, what are you thinking”
The quick-witted Lily asked.
Giles gave her a silent smile.
But even that didn’t last long.
Giles still had the status of a Revolutionary Army soldier.
It meant that anyone could be arrested.
He had to be content with that fact.
No matter how much he thought about it, it seemed detrimental to raise suspicions that he kept coming in and out of this place.
Giles watched Lily’s back.
She now had the strength to live on.
She gained weight, and her voice no longer cracked.
That was enough.
He felt like he had to stop seeing her.
Reason said so, but his heart wanted to stay by Lily’s side.
“Don’t worry about me.
Focus on this moment.”
He said it not only to Lily, but also to himself.
Giles lowered himself and sat down beside Lily.
Feeling her presence next to his side soothed his own lingering feelings.
He wanted her to live, not paint her future.
“I feel lucky to have met you.”
Giles closed his eyes.
‘Let’s end it here.’
He remembered that being greedy could put Lily in danger.
He might break her with his own hands.
He was supposed to say goodbye, but Giles never did.
That was because if he let it out of his mouth, it would be an eternal goodbye.
On the day of the operation, Giles got into the military truck without sleeping a wink.
All his men were waiting in the truck.
While Giles was silently looking down at the map, his immediate adjutant* spoke to him.
[T/N: Adjutant: a military officer who acts as an administrative assistant to a senior officer.]
“How are you feeling”
“It’s been a long time since I left for a mission this early in the morning.
At the height of the revolution, night duty was exhausting.
After being quiet for a few days, my body was starting to complain.”
Giles ignored the drivel that the deputy was speaking to lighten up the mood.
“Is everyone here”
“No one is missing.”
“Tell the driver to start.”
The deputy banged his fist on the thick partition that divided the driver’s seat and the rear space where they sat.
The truck started moving with a rattle.
Their destination was a small village, located close to the border.
In the days when Beldam ruled Ipswin, it was used as a kind of vacation spot for nobles to stay because of its beautiful scenery and convenient location.
Of course, now that the Revolutionary Army had burned down all the buildings, only gray rubble remained.
It was no surprise that the fugitives chose the place where no one lived anymore as a safe haven.
Giles, who was sweeping his fingers through the names of the fugitives, suddenly raised his head.
This task was different from anything he had ever undertaken.
Giles was far from a good man, but he was not so cold that he could not recognize his men’s faces.
They weren’t his men.
Some of them were soldiers he had never seen before.
Harrington’s words that this was a special mission came to mind.
Was that why the army was regrouped accordingly
The Revolutionary Army was like a net woven together in haste.
In short, it was still in the process of organizing.
There could be cases where positions were filled as necessary.
Above all, Giles had a lot more to pay attention to.
He calmed his throbbing heart by reading the files on the identities and routes of his targets in the rattling truck.
–Turn them into corpses and bring them to me.
It’s always a hassle to clean up.
You’d agree, wouldn’t you
He could accept an order to shoot.
But why should their corpses be transported…
Ipswin was not large.
They reached their destination in a matter of hours.
Giles got off the truck with joy.
No matter how many times he tried, he couldn’t get used to the experience of poor pavement in a small space with 10 people.
According to reports, only two or three hours were left before the fugitives would completely cross the border.
Giles ordered his men to search the area.
It was the end of October.
Winter was coming.
Surprisingly, the first snow had already fallen in Meinhebach, where they had to search.
It was a good omen.
It was clear that footprints left in the snow would greatly aid their search.
At this rate, the chances of failing the mission were slim.
“Have you ever tried rabbit hunting”
When his adjutant asked an unexpected question, Giles wrinkled his brow.
“What are you talking about”
“A rabbit hunt.
Literally, I’m asking if you’ve ever been to hunt rabbits.”
“Rabbits are timid animals.
However, they are not easy to catch because of their small size and agility.
If you try to catch them by trusting your running skills ignorantly, you will often lose them.
As with all hunting, catching a rabbit requires strategy.”
Giles thought he would have to play along.
“So what is the strategy”
“First, you have to find the rabbit hole.
Then, gather people and get them to settle down near the hole.
Especially in the winter, rabbits are always hiding in caves.
I told you, right Rabbits get scared easily.
When you shout together, a surprised rabbit jumps out, and you have to make good use of that time.”
“What does that have to do with this mission”
“Just… Searching like this makes me feel like I’m on a rabbit hunt.
A rabbit changed into a human, but isn’t it the same in the end”
Giles held up his hand and stopped the adjutant.
There were faint footprints.
But there was no sign of military boots.
“Charlie, are you sure we’re the only ones in charge of the Northwest”
Just when he thought that, he heard a shout in the distance.
Gunshots rang out in succession.
At the same time, something quickly disappeared among the trees in the distance.
Giles left his adjutant behind and ran straight for the target.
The object was running away with all its might.
He no longer had any doubts.
It was a fugitive.
Once convinced, Giles drew his pistol and opened fire.
Then, the object that was getting farther and farther fell to the floor.
Catching one didn’t end the hunt.
Giles yelled at the deputy and started running in the direction of a noise from afar.
“Charlie, wrap it up!”
From the uproar, it was clear that the mission had been disrupted.
Giles threw off the heavy coat that hindered his running and ran towards his men.
They were the ones who pulled the trigger first.
Were they saying they still hadn’t hit the target
He got a little closer and saw that they lost the fugitive.
“Shoot them with your gun! Shoot!”
Giles yelled at them, but they didn’t follow his orders.
Anger rose at the sight of his subordinates delaying because they couldn’t catch just one woman.
The woman who was struggling with his subordinates jumped forward.
They were deliberately sabotaging the mission.
Otherwise, this absurd situation would not have happened.
Giles ran in pursuit of the fleeing woman, who was bleeding from the side.
She was straining her body and having difficulty breathing.
If he missed, it was over.
Fortunately, the target was injured, so he was able to close the distance with ease.
Giles’ hand touched the woman’s back.
The two of them rolled around in the snow.
The woman resisted with all her might, but was eventually brought to the ground.
Giles removed the scarf from the woman’s face.
Her face was distorted by burns.
Thanks to having already checked the photos in the file, confirming her identity was easy.
The only problem was that the quality of the photos in the file was poor.
When he saw her, he knew for sure.
She had burns on half of her face, but the other half was still intact.
The remaining half of the woman’s face, with her blond hair cut short, belonged to someone who he could not fail to recognize.
The mental shock and confusion paralyzed his sense of judgment.
Why was his sister running away like this