To Ian, his home was never a comfortable nor consoling place. He was unhesitatingly sent to the elect training grounds by his parents so that Ian could at least have food to line his stomach. Although the start of his journey henceforth was rough, it wasn't all that bad in retrospect. Ian was always a bright kid. He quickly caught on to the fact that all the other kids around him were in fact competitors. But Ian was still a child. Not even Ian could ignore his grumbling stomach while watching the other kids roasting chestnuts over a campfire. Ian quickly grew attached to the other kids, often spending time lazing around on the dirt floor of the training areas without any care for the world. He would be the one to make fun of the others for lying on a dirty floor, but often he would find himself playfully dragged down to the ground and having mud splotched on his face.
Those days were much without complaint. He embarked on a long journey with a goal in mind, growing along the way and feeling a new sense of satisfaction. Accompanied by precious friends, he firmly believed the trust between them would last forever no matter how things turned out. He loved the moments he spent coming up with ideas on how he would tease his 'nemesis' and would strike up a conversation with the kids of royal descent who seldom attended such events. However, at this point, Ian did not yet know that these friends would disappear just as easily as they appeared in his life.
Everything changed in the blink of an eye. And that deciding moment was when Ian proved his strength, being nominated to become an elect. Ian could only laugh in disbelief as he watched a messenger sent by his family read out his orders. He still remembers the messenger's temperament of that one gently moonlit night in May — his hurried footsteps, covered in sweat, reading out the scroll with a shaky voice from all the nerves. Ian will never forget that day when his life became someone else's property. Overnight, he became responsible for bringing his household back on its two feet, followed by blackmails, threats, and an overwhelming sense of burden. He tried to shake it off, but whenever it would be time for his monthly evaluations back at home, everything went back to square one. Elect training was no longer fun, even compliments became meaningless to him. The only thing that kept him going was the fact that one day he'll finally inherit the divine beast.
Eventually, the day when he was to inherit the divine beast came. Yet he found himself facing an immense feeling of vast emptiness. Now with a hole in his heart, he had lost all hope of returning back to his normal life, and all hope of breaking free from the shackles of his family.