1 1: If Only I Was Strong


"The human is there! Quick!" A buff man with bear ears and a tail pointed the direction to the east with his bloodied right arm. "Do not let her escape, or I will skin you all alive!"

Upon his command, a horde of beastmen from the Bear Tribe followed their leader. Drool trickled down their mouths as they remembered the sweet scent of the human they had captured from the caravan of slaves near their borders.

"Boss, can we break her limbs so she cannot escape from us again?"

A malicious grin cracked from the leader's scarred lips. "You can cut off her limbs. You saw how her regeneration skills healed the whip wounds of her body."

The beastmen growled in excitement at the declaration of their leader. The group of hundreds scattered all throughout the forest — eager to capture back the black-haired beauty.

Amid the chaos brought by the beastmen of the Bear Tribe, a small woman curled her body in between two boulders of stone near the cliff. A pair of dainty hands covered her lips to stop herself from sobbing.

She heard them all. She heard how the Bear Tribe's beastmen turned the Forest of the Lost upside down to find her. Sue Terin had no more tears left to cry, but her heart was still mourning. Not for fear of being tortured again by the Bear Tribe's leader but for the people she had lost because of her foolishness and weakness.

Even though Sue Terin was trembling from running exhaustion, a malediction glint gleamed beneath her obsidian-like pair of eyes.

'If only I did not trust that man. If only I chose to believe the warning bells in my mind. If only I did not turn away from the clues of betrayal. Would I have been able to save them all? Would I have been able to save myself?' Sue Terin pondered at the back of her mind. The pattern of words was the constant agony of her heart and soul.

"I found her! Boss, I found her!"

Sue's train of thought stopped abruptly when the torch's light snapped her from her melancholic trance. A man with bear-like ears and tail stood before Sue, and a vicious grin shone amid the stinging pain in Sue's eyes brought by the sudden luminance of the torch.

"Aah! Let me go!" Though weak against a beastman's grip, Sue scratched the beastman's arms and hands that pulled her collar.

The beastman's eyes turned red. He slapped Sue's right cheek. "Behave, human!"

"Aaah! No!" Sue did not remain slumped to the ground when she felt her collar being dragged back before the beastman strangled her neck, raising her tiny body from the ground.

"Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!" The beastman was sensitive to noise, and Sue's screams triggered his bestial irritation. "Scream again, and I will pull your tongue out, human. My father did not say that we can't cut off your body as long as you stay alive."

"I would rather be killed then." Sue's scratchy statement was not a scream, yet it was a challenge to the beastman. Sue was feeling dizzy as the air in her body started to dwindle. Her trashing body started to go limp, but her will to survive was more potent than the last time she was in the throes of life and death.

The middle-aged beastman threw Sue to the boulder. Sue's back hit the sturdy stone, almost making her faint, but she bit her tongue to remain conscious. She knew that if she surrendered to the lulling darkness that hovered over her, there would be no way that she would be able to escape again.

"Aaah!" A shrilling scream pierced through the silence of the Forest of the Lost when the beastman stepped onto Sue's wrist until its bones shattered beyond the snow-like skin.

The beastman pulled down his pants before he dragged the half-conscious Sue by her hair. He straddled the unmoving yet crying Sue. "Before they arrive, I will enjoy breaking this supple body."

The beastman hastily tore Sue's nightgown, which barely covered her slender body. His saliva dripped from his hanging tongue as his vicious mind imagined the painful reactions of the human woman beneath him. He relished the mere thought of torturing her and breaking her mind until she would have no choice but to submit before him.

"No! Please, no!" Her voice cracked. It was weak and desperate. It was almost half a whisper filled with fear. Sue's fear stemmed from the thought of dying without being able to let those who had wronged her suffer. "I... I don't want to die."

Sue's voice was barely a whisper, but the grinning and salivating beastman heard it. This made him grin more, for the broken words of the equally broken human were like an admission of submission to his beast — the beastman only took it the wrong way as he was clouded with his sheer twisted kind of humor before the heaven-defying beauty in front of him.

Hair was as dark as the starless night sky that remained silky even after the nights of endless bloody tortures the human woman endured. Her unique black-colored eyes shone like an obsidian gem. It did not lose its brilliance even after being subjected to humiliation after being stripped naked in front of buyers during the auction. Her delicate features made her resemble a living doll that even the gorgeous vampire women could not compete with; her scarless body remained blemish free after healing on its own, which made the races around her covet her precious blood. Indeed, the woman beneath the greedy beastman was the last living human on this continent.

"I wonder if I mate with you now, will you be able to bear my child?" The beastman growled. "Oh yeah. I forgot. The warlock that my father hired last week took your womb away, right? I remembered your screams when they cut off your womb from your body. Your screams are addicting... and now, I will make you scream once more, human."

The beastman raised his right foot higher than necessary to gain momentum before stepping on the human woman's almost unmoving chest beneath his sole.

Sue stared at the three moons hovering over the world. Tears she thought had long run out continued streaming down her ears.

'So this is why the humans preferred a massive suicide rather than continue striving in this forsaken continent. Being human in this world means being a tool by these beasts. This is the world of survival of the fittest, so the human race initially got no place here.' Sue Terin, the last human race, was now numb to this kind of humiliation.

As the beastman kicked her body until she was littered with black and blue aside from her face, Sue fixated her gaze on the night sky. She stopped resisting. She muted the mocking laughter of the beastman above her like she always did. Sue knew that the races around her loved seeing a human's tortured face.

'If only I am stronger.' Sue Terin thought as she gathered the spiritual energy in her body to her numbing heart.

The beastman was too busy beating up Sue's body that he failed to see the change around her. Her once black-colored eyes turned golden, and her snow-like skin started to turn black from all the dark veins spreading from her heart.

'I will be back, and when I do, all those who made me suffer will receive tenfolds of the pains I endured! I, Sue Terin, will not rest until I exact revenge!' Sue screamed these thoughts before a ball of light wrapped her body and soul.

"Wh-Wha-What is ha-happening?" The beastman scampered away from Sue's glowing body. His face paled upon seeing the body he had pinned to the ground earlier, now floating midair.

"Fool! What did you do?" The leader of the Bear Tribe, along with his beastmen, arrived. He slapped the back of the head of the middle-aged beastman, but his eyes remained focused on the gleaming woman.

The light grew brighter as time passed by. "Damn this! We are too late now! The Lord of the Vampire City will kill me if he learns that the last human has died!"

"Boss? What is happening to that human?" One of the beastman behind the newly arrived leader of the Bear Tribe asked in fear. His instinct told him to run where the light would not reach.

Instead of answering his men, the leader yelled his orders. "Run as far as you can! If the light touches you during the explosion, you will die with your soul that you cannot reincarnate!"

The leader did not have to say twice. With him leading his men, the beastmen of the Bear Tribe dashed to the southeastern part of the Forest of the Lost, which would lead them back to the territory where the Beastman Race resided.

"Boss, is that what I am thinking?" The right-hand man of the leader, who was running side by side with the leader, asked him. Cold sweat trickled his neck as his heart pounded.

"Yes. I am afraid that bitch is planning to self-detonate with us."

"How? How did she learn to do that, Boss? The last time a human self-detonate was dated fifty years ago when the last settlement of the human race chose to self-destruct together rather than be a slave to the Vampire Lord!"

They all knew that she was a human, but since they learned that she was raised by the Terin Clan — a noble tribe of the beastman race — they assumed that she did not know the abilities and tricks of the human race that had long vanished from this continent. But now, they realized that they had made a fatal mistake.

The Boss was about to answer when a bright light engulfed the entire Forest of the Lost. No area remained untouched by the deadly light, which made the racing beastmen scream with fear, including the leader of the Bear Tribe.

"Help us!"


"Run faster!"


All living things touched by the beam of light started to corrode until nothing was left but a pool of flesh and blood. The trees and plants turned to ashes. The river, ponds, and streams now boiled with black soot. And the land had turned black.

Gone was the forest. Gone were the beastmen.

The stench of darkness filled the air. At this moment, after the light slowly retracted into the floating body of the human woman, a bolt of purple-colored lightning hit the body.

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