"... I'll have to put this on hold for now. Later, I would want to know the details before I choose something. I don't think I should make a decisive decision." There's more to it than just picking someone right now. This, in itself, could be a test. Even if they say, they'll be my allies, my relationship with these people will be affected in some way. It's like I will be choosing who will be my best friend out of three of my friends. I don't want to blindly miss out on these benefits and fully understand what I am getting. I think Leon's the easiest one to understand, yet I wouldn't mind befriending the man since he has a lot of connections with the outside world. Then again, Jenine has secrets that might help me out later as well. Lastly, Len has super soldiers which would- will change the world in a way, but I don't know if I should trust him. Satisfied with my answer, all three of them nod their heads.
"That's fine," Len says, "I expected this much. You certainly have Amelia's brains. I bet some of your siblings might have taken my offer though."
"That's an insult, you know." Leon looks at Len, "Caesar would have thought about it as well."
"We'll make time for you whenever you're ready to talk about our deals. I think you should come with me back to my settlement for today." This made the other two rulers look at Jenine. Len, disapproving of this, wanted to object, but Jenine points out... my next appointment I have. "Now, now, before you two object and yell at me, Aisha has a date with my daughter for today. And I plan to make sure they get it. Most of it has been spent coming to your gathering, Len. If this gathering wasn't important, I would have dragged Aisha to my settlement for the entire day just so the two of them can be together. I also allowed this to happen since it benefits Aisha in the long run." Both of the rulers look at me, making sure that it's true. I blush heavily, wishing that they didn't need to hear my confirmation about it. Esta decides to speak up, saying, "She promised to go on a date with each one of us. It's not a lie. She already took me on a date around Zezrious, so it is Alice's turn."
"If you two went around Zezrious, I am assuming that the Elven Tempest next to you is your girlfriend as well? I would say that tomorrow you should take your date around my city again and chat with me at some point about my deal. Or if you just want to pay a visit to my abode and have our families meet. What do you think?" Leon places his offer on the table. Len frowns at this.
"Hold on now-"
"I think you should take it, Aisha," Charlotte speaks up, "The faster you hear these deals, the faster you can make a decision. You are staying in Zezrious, so you can visit Len when you wrap up your dates and visits outside the city." Peeking at Len, I can see that he didn't continue with his objection.
"I think I will take you up on that offer," I replied, getting a laugh from the big man. "I think my younger sisters will like that as well."
"So I guess this concludes this meeting?" General X asks, "I think I'll be getting back to work."
"Yes. The meeting is over. Thank you all for coming. I greatly appreciated it. The next time we meet up will be at our next gathering or if something bad has caught all of our attention. Aisha, when you are ready to speak with me, bother Abdul about it. Once again, thank you for coming to the gathering, and I apologize for any discomfort." He smiles at me as he stays in his seat. Everyone else starts to get up from their chairs, leaving the room at the same time. I peek over my shoulder to stare at the Bullet Hero who remains in his seat. As the door closes, I can see a wicked smile that forms on his face. It wasn't towards me, but his smile has brought a chill down my spine. As everyone walks down the same hallway, I stared at X's back. I need to chat with her before she leaves the place. Trying to chat in this area will be unwise. Valarie and Len don't trust each other, and I don't want Len to know that I am trying to get information about him. I think I got a solution to this issue though.
"Are we going to head to your place right now?" I asked this to Jenine, getting a smile from her.
"Yes. I plan to take my people and your group to Aeston. I want to make sure my daughter can spend the rest of her day with you. And maybe with me too-"
"Mom! D-Don't take her away from me!" Pulling me closer to her, Alice glares at Jenine. I blush at this, hearing a slight chuckle from Abaddon. I don't know if its a joke, but Abaddon Morrin mutters.
"Aren't you popular?"
"I don't want to be." I hiss at her, trying to extinguish my blush.
"She isn't bad." Gamma shrugs, making me choke a bit, "I mean, Valarie went out of her way for this gal, so that means something."
"Which is why a bunch of crazy psychos want her dead." Beta sighs.
"I think I'll tag along as well." General X looks at Jenine, then at me, "I got something to do at Aeston."
"Sadly, I will stay at this gathering. I still got my duties, and Adramelech Logan will want to know what happened after our meeting. Don't worry, I won't give him the specific details about the deal." Abaddon Morrin says. "What do you plan to do Crimson Overlord?"
"I'll tag along with Aisha's group." Charlotte answers, "I got some business in Aeston as well." Abaddon Morrin nods her head, stopping at an intersection, "Till next time. Aisha, take care of yourself now." Nodding to her, she walks down another hallway, regrouping with a bunch of other dark beings. I ponder on a few things I should ask General X, knowing that I should make these questions count. We arrived back at the social gathering, seeing the crowds of people again. My other party comes to us along with the witches in Jenine's group. I look at them, staring at the mix outfits of suits and dresses. I didn't think it was true, but all the witches are females. They bow or curtsy before Jenine, saying, "We're ready to leave when you are, Mistress." Eh? Mistress? I got a few questions for Jenine now, yet my attention turned towards my family.
"You alright?" I knelt to stare at Jessica and Jennifer. They nod their head, hugging me tightly. Louise says, "I was able to calm them down. I think... Lonnie, a blonde hair [Mechanist] cheered them up along with her demon."
"I should thank them when I see them again," I said, standing back up. "Are you fine though?"
"Shaken, but I'm fine."
"Are you planning to leave?" Abdul walks up to me with two elite troopers behind him. I feel a bit... intimated by their presence, but Abdul assures me, "They're my guys. Don't need to fear them."
Is that supposed to make me feel a bit better?
"I plan to leave with Jenine." I motion towards the Overlord, "Don't need to worry about me. Thanks though... For earlier." Abdul looks at Jenine, nodding his head.
"No problem. Anytime. Well... Take care then. I got somethings to take care- Where's Len?" He seems a bit worried.
"Last we left him, he was in the meeting room." Gallant answers, "Don't know if he left the room though."
"I see. Well, take care, Aisha." He bows, having his two soldiers follow him. He was moving at a quick pace.
"I should take my leave as well. It was nice meeting you, Aisha. I'll see you tomorrow. Farewell." Leon walks away from us, meeting up with his party.
"Ready?" Jenine looks at us.
"Yep- wait how are we-" Before I finish my sentence, Jenine snaps her fingers. The area around us changed drastically. The crowded lit room of Zezrious gathering turned into an empty room with dark walls surrounding us. I jump at this, planning to pull out my weapons. Alice stops me, explaining what happened.
"My mom just teleported us into the palace's teleportation room. There's nothing to worry about, Aisha."
"Ah..." It was so sudden and... quick. I didn't know you can just teleport to your city like that. Jenine smiles at me, explaining a bit of it.
"Once you hit my rank, you can do a lot of things. But I can explain that when you're ready. Now, I think that you have something to discuss with General X, right?" On cue, the other people in Jenine's party start to leave. Aware of this, General X says, "This is why I decided to tag along. Valarie told me about your curiosity about King Len." I would have just nodded my head, but I realized something.
How did General X contact Valarie when she was in the room with Len the entire time? Both Gamma and Beta were in the same room and none of them left his sight. How were they able to communicate with Valarie?
And how exactly did General X know about my curiosity about King Len?
"There are things you'll understand in due time, Aisha. Like how Jenine teleported us so easily with a lot of people, I got something that enables me to communicate with Valarie without any special device."
"Wait, what's going on here?" I looked at Ethan. Right, he wasn't there at that meeting. Luckily, Jenine pulls them away from us, "Ah, it's nothing. I do want to show you guys something. Follow me now." I feel like Jenine just used something on my brother, making him and Olivia follow her out. My sisters, being oblivious about it all, were entertained about the thing Jenine wants to show them.
"I'll watch over them." Louise follows after them, Golem trailing her. "Protect."
"I'll be with Jenine. Think that she'll want some answers about the Black Knights and some other things. What you plan to do Charlotte?"
"I'll stay here for a bit. I want to hear this conversation." Gallant nods his head, taking Michael and Luke with them. Once the giant doors close behind him, the only ones left in this room are General X, Gamma, Beta, Charlotte, Esta, Leilatha, Alice, and I. General X pulls something off of her belt, tossing it into the air. A familiar shield engulfs around us and the room, securing our private conversation. Next, General X pulls out another device and drops it on the ground. The moment it touched the ground, Valarie and my mom appeared before us. I blinked a couple of times, gaping at their physical appearance.
"Having a bunch of handy gimmicks can do a lot for ya. You should close your mouth before someone inserts something in it, Aisha." Valarie chuckles at my baffled expression. "Besides, I wanted to see your girls in the flesh."
"More like I did." My mom says, folding her arms, "I just wanted to see that elf over there." She was referring to Esta, but General X lets out a cough, "Can't we focus on the important topic at hand. You can tease and look at Aisha's girlfriends later..."
"Yeah. I am a bit curious about King Len as well. I heard things, but I want some confirmation about it." Valarie turns to Charlotte, her eyes widened for a second. Charlotte, confused by this, blinked a couple of times before her own eyes widened at Valarie's appearance. I think everyone was confused at this reaction, Valarie coughs madly to disrupt the silence.
"Right, right. King Len... Lenny boy... Heh, it has been years. So many years since we even met each other and partied up during the Pillars of Gluttony."
"You still call him Lenny? Valarie-"
"The nickname gets on his nerves hun." Valarie shrugs. Her expression turns serious, "Before I say anything, everyone in this room must not share this information with anyone else. I mean it. This is something that should be kept quiet at all times. I'll cast a couple of skills to ensure secrecy, but you must not willingly share this information with anyone else unless you think otherwise and secured a room to tell such things."
"I swear as the Crimson Overlord, I will not share such information on this. I swear it upon the Black Knights as well." That last part made me raise my eyebrow. Why would she swear to the Black Knights? I'll have to bother her about it later. My mom nods her head.
"I wonder why Len hadn't contacted me in all these years. You have my word. You know this already, Valarie." Valarie looks at my group.
"I swear as Aisha's slave that I will not relay such information," Leilatha confirms, bowing at Valarie. Oh god. My mom gives me a look, a naughty one, as Valarie was smiling. My cheeks are flushing as Alice also proclaims her vow.
"I won't say anything. I swear this on my love for Aisha Graham." Oi! Stop it!
"I swear I won't say anything as long as I can love Aisha Graham," Esta announces. As I try to cope with these vows for their undying love for me, Valarie looks at me.
"Y-Yes! I swear I won't tell anyone unless I trust them with my life and undying love-" Okay, I think I was so flustered by my girls that I said something ridiculous. Amelia lets out a giggle at my declaration as Valarie says, "Fair enough. Which part do you lot want to hear- the tragic or the horrible part?" My party froze at those words. This doesn't sound good at all.
"Say it in order." Charlotte speaks for us, "Are the books true? Is he a hero for saving Zezrious?"
"Yes. He saved Zezrious and he is a hero... But there's more to it. Aisha, how much do you know about King Len?"
"From what I heard and read, King Len saved the people of Zezrious from the Great Demonic Horde. The Great Demonic Wars swept through various lands, killing millions of people and destroying many civilizations. There are a lot of speculations and unconfirmed facts, but it was horrible. King Len was deemed as a hero as he and his soldiers ended the Great Demonic Horde. How they did it wasn't told in great detail. Even those who witnessed the event would not go further into details about it. It was pretty vague when I read it in the history books." I gave a recount of what I know, getting a nod from Valarie.
"Yep. The history book gave the basics. Now, I can fill in on a couple of things that are secretive and have been left out greatly by the writers. Once again, this information is secretive. Do not share it so openly." Valarie lets out a sigh and starts to explain.
"Before I go into Len's history, I will say that the Great Demonic Horde are true demons. By true, they are demons created from the innermost darkest emotions from a being. They are true demons that are three times stronger than a demon. They want nothing but to destroy the world and create suffering. Do you remember when you fell into despair, Aisha? That... is what happened in the Great Demonic Wars. It only started with a couple of true demons. At that time, Brynhild and I were starting to become famous, but we had to intervene in a couple of spots to stop the demonic corruption. We were the few who knew how to stop the spreading corruption and how it worked. The information was locked tight, all parties involved with the suppression vowed not to reveal the information for fear of another Demonic Horde. Despite our efforts to stop the evergrowing horde, they had armies. We didn't have a strong enough army to counter theirs until they reached Zezrious. Understand that King Len had these elite soldiers and advanced technology by the time the horde arrived before him, he took care of the incursion. His elite soldiers are survivors from his adventures in the Pillars of Gluttony. King Len, himself, has Soul Devourers and items that make him the infamous Bullet Hero. They made the Demonic Horde run back to the north... Where they are currently engaging with the light forces."
"You didn't have your faction by then?" Amelia asks.
"My faction was still being made. I didn't have competent leaders at the time, and I didn't have armies to counter the Demonic Horde. I knew that I needed certain weapons to win against them, but I didn't have them at the time. I could have handled it myself, but I would be swarmed by other factions. Also, I was getting a notorious reputation as 'that bitch' to a lot of other factions. Even if you do something good, people will still want you dead for personal reasons."
"Aren't you glad you recruited me?" General X smirks, "Your strongest armies can do much more now."
"Yes. I'm glad you joined me, but I don't think it's enough against King Len's new army. And his existing one." Valarie lets out a sigh, "Now, let me talk about Len's reason for coming to Zezrious and stopping the horde. If you think Len obtained these technological advances from the Pillars of Gluttony, you'll be half right and wrong. When we first met him and his troops, they already had guns and stronger armor than the rest of the world." Hearing this, I became puzzled by this declaration. They ALREADY had this before they entered the Pillars of Gluttony?
"How far are we talking about?" I asked.
"A couple hundred years ago or something. I can't remember, but they certainly displayed themselves on the first few floors of the Pillars of Gluttony. Right now, his weapons are far beyond what he started with, but King Len had help. Better yet, he had a lover. A lover from another world and time." Eh? Wait a second-
"You're referring to summoned heroes? Or summoned beings from another world?" Alice clarifies.
"That or a person who is reincarnated."
"Reincarnated?" That word is foreign to me. Apparently, Leilatha knows what it means.
"Someone reborn in a different life from their past one. Thinking about it, aren't you a reincarnated being, General X?" She is? General X didn't shy away from the answer.
"Yes, I am a reincarnated being."
"That would explain your scary aura when you get pissed off. Especially in the body of a little girl," Leilatha mutters. "But what does this have to do with Len's lover?"
"A lot of things. I can say that Len has hinted at the meeting. It's-"
"FUCK!" General X exclaims that loudly, having her hands grasp her head. She starts to curse violently, interrupting Valarie. The redhead didn't mind though, smiling. "You kidding me?! How can I be so- Damn it! Damn it all!" Lamenting to herself, Gamma and Beta exchange a glance at each other before they look at Valarie. My party and Charlotte were utterly puzzled by General X's outburst. My mom was in deep thought though.
"I thought my general would have suspected it by now."
"Fucking hell, sure I would- HELL FUCKING NO!" General X threw her hat down, showing a twisted expression, "Why the hell didn't I think about that possibility!?"
"King Len is a reincarnated soul?" Esta asks, tilting her head.
"No... His LOVER is from another world, wasn't she? It would explain why Len admired her so much." My mom gives us the answer, hearing General X swear violently at her stupidity.
"That would explain so much in terms of his advances and his knowledge. What exactly was his lover? She must have had dangerous information on her."
"You know what it is." Valarie answers. The child general shakes her head, unable to keep a calm face anymore.
"You telling me that Len got his hands on- Ugh! This explains so much! But wait a minute, you knew this!"
"In a way... But I didn't want to confirm it until he admitted it himself." Admitted? A lot of us were confused about this roundabout talking. Charlotte, despite her notorious reputation, has a puzzled expression. My mom was able to nod her head and understand this. Beta and Gamma just looked at their leaders, questioning what they were blabbing about. Sighing greatly, General X fills us in.
"Len has someone from my world, but I didn't think that this significant other would have... extensive knowledge about various things that Len has created. It would explain how he was able to obtain guns and other advanced technologies from my world to here. I had another idea of how he might have been able to mass-produce weapons, but this would explain some things I have been trying to figure out. I thought he might have sent his troops to find other summoned beings to obtain this information-"
"Isn't that something you would do?" Valarie states. General X didn't deny it, but she said, "I WOULDN'T do that. I just persuaded you that some people might be better off... Dead. There is no point in killing them when they can get themselves killed or if they are aware of how dangerous such information is."
"Even if guns have been introduced by you and Len? There's no point in gaining such information now. Or restraining these summoned beings as much." Valarie summons a chair, sitting on it.
"Even if that's the case, if they're not smart about what they say or what they share, stuff from our world can be used here. Especially if it's like a small idea that can be turned into reality. Anyways, back to our original topic. Len's lover is a [Scientist]. A person who observes and figures out how the world works or stuff that they see. It's more of a logical approach of how to explain things like how religion tends to fill in the gap about how and why these things are here. A prime example of this would be like how the world was created. In a religious sense, religion can explain that whereas the theory and possibility that an inferior species evolved into humans appeals towards the scientific approach and mindset. Either way, Len's lover had a lot of knowledge. I don't know how much she knew, but I got a feeling that she told Len about genetic engineering. She must have left a huge impact on Len if he loved her that much."
"She was... and he has conducted actions that I cannot approve of. Even if it was in the name for power or scientific pursuits." General X blinks at Valarie's statement. The way Valarie worded it hints at some shocking truth though. Before she tells the secret, I realized something. I would have forgotten about it if I hadn't improved from all of my weird encounters ever since I came to Zezrious. The reason why General X was so upset about the fact that Len has dead bodies... was the sheer fact that he'll EXTRACT their genes for his usage. It makes sense now. I was confused about that part, trying to understand how he would do that, but I got a feeling he knows how it's done since his lover was a [Scientist]. I still wonder how exactly he'll be able to do it, but I got a feeling that Len will reveal it to me when I visit him again.
Hold on. Valarie says, "conducted" as in...
My face turns pale, realizing something. I think my mom caught onto it as well, yet she seems... furious.
"... He has already done this? He EXTRACTED genes from dead bodies?" I asked. Valarie corrects me, frowning greatly at my inquiry.
"Extracted from dead bodies? He has DONE these things already."
"... what?" General X looks at her leader, wanting an explanation. Valarie has one of her hands hover above her storage ring, pulling out an armor piece from Len's elite trooper. She tosses it to General X.
"I was able to obtain this in the past before he added explosive devices and trackers onto his troops. It took me a while to inspect it since it had so many spells over it, but I cracked it. You'll understand why Len's armor is so powerful." General X stares at the purple gauntlet, empowering her energy around her hands and the armor piece. Her eyes glow for a bit, doing something with the armor. After a minute has passed, General X toss the piece at Valarie. Violently. Charlotte looks at the two, asking Valarie, "Can I [Inspect] that armor piece as well?"
"Sure, you'll see why I don't trust him anymore." Valarie tosses the piece at Charlotte, General X hissing from her mouth.
"If Len has done that, he is no ally to us period. I will gladly wage war with him and train every idiot we have to become super-soldiers." I watch Charlotte copy General X as she inspects the armor. She frowns at the truth behind the armor.
"... no way, Len..." Charlotte tosses the armor to Valarie, the woman catching it in her hand.
"Uh... someone wants to fill us in?" I am afraid to ask what was so bad about the armor.
General X was going to explain, but Valarie cut her off. She shakes her head, saying to me, "We'll tell you some other time."
"Oh?" I would have pressed for the information, yet my mom says something that distracted me.
"So... he did lose his sanity." All of us turn to Amelia, Valarie confused by Amelia's statement. She didn't explain what she meant though, shaking her head. "... the moment his lover died, he continued her line of work. Most likely, he wanted to carry out the old schematics he had her do before he left the Pillars of Gluttony."
"How do you know this?" Valaire did not contain her shock. Now I am a bit curious about what my mom's relationship with Len was. She knows something about this mess.
"Secrets that Len and I had back then." She shakes her head, "But... he..." She didn't finish her sentence, staring into the empty air. I try to gather my thoughts. Valarie gives a concerned look towards my mom, but General X took over.
"It's like playing as a divine being." Charlotte closes her eyes, "So... this is why you were hostile and hesitant to Len."
"I think we should discuss this at a different time. I will say be careful Aisha. This man cannot be trusted. Trust us."
Valarie looks at me, "We will continue this conversation at another time when you have a better grasp of things. Same can be said with your lovers." I nod my head, not saying much. This is disturbing news. So Len has already committed atrocities with people’s genetics, yet there’s more to it. When they inspected that armor, it fazed General X and Charlotte. There is a darker truth behind Len’s actions. I know Len was... is a suspicious character, but I didn't think he'll be this bad... whatever this horrible truth is. It won’t be something I will like though. That’s for certain.
"Does my mother know about this?" Alice asks.
"Yes and no. I can fill her in later since she's an ally in the long run." Valarie answers. "But let's go back to why we even went out of our way to bring this up. Other than the obvious reasons, I want to extend a deal to you, Aisha." Huh?
"... a deal? Aren't we allies already? In a way..." I know that Valarie helped us out because she wanted to, but why is she giving an offer to me? Before I can ask her any questions, General X asks me, "Do you remember that recording I showed to everyone? There was something odd about it, right?"
I thought back on that video, feeling that everything was fine. I was going to deny it, yet there was one thing that Len pointed out and everyone ignored it. It was quite... subtle. And Len might have a point.
How did General X get a recording of all of this without bumping into any issues?
From what I saw, the undead machines had soldiers who can find invisible troopers, so her soldier won't be able to survive that. Was it because of the recording device she used? But if it is, it should have been destroyed or lost? And if the recording was delivered by her soldier, how did her troop survive all of that without dying? I glance at my allies, seeing if they got anything. They were at a blank, unable to answer for me. After a bit more thinking, I realized something. It may be farfetched though, but the answer is possible. Maybe. It would explain how the recording was still intact and the person recording it was alive. OR is. But it's something I wouldn't have suggested if I was dealing with normal individuals. Right now, I'm dealing with anomalies in their own way. I hesitate a bit before I give my response. If I'm wrong, I'll be a laughing stock.
"You have ONE of those things, don't you? The undead robot?"
There was a pause for two minutes before General X opens her mouth.
"...wow. I'm impressed." Snapping her finger, an undead machine appears right beside General. X. My party backs away, Esta suppressing her scream with a hand over her mouth. My mom jumps at the sight, Charlotte almost flying at the creature. Valaire laughs, clapping at my answer. The undead robot is different from the ones we saw in the recording. It has a thin frame with a dark metallic color for its skin. Well, metal bones. The interior, where it would have a circulatory system inside of it, runs with a dark purple color. The head has a mask, with several other components attached to the side of its head. The fingers on its hands are sharp razor claws, but the legs of this machine are bent like a raptor's legs. It seems like the machine has hidden weapons all over it. I say this because I can see the hidden panels located throughout most of its body.
"You're catching on to all of this, aren't you?"
"HOW in the hell do you have that thing!? I thought-"
"Honestly, it was sheer luck and randomness. But I have no idea what it is exactly. I would just call it an Undead Immortal, for now. I would have called it Undead Destroyer, but I would have that name for the actually Destroyers of their kind."
"... so how did you acquire these undead robots? I thought this unknown threat MADE these things?" Charlotte folds her arm, calling out the bluff that General X said earlier in the meeting.
"I had an idea of what might have happened. I doubt that this unknown entity can mass produce these complex beings. Even I can't understand how or what made these things. There is a being that can make them though. Once again, I don't know their real names, but I'll call them the Undead Immortal Rulers, U.I.R. These specific beings are the only ones who can create more Undead Immortal soldiers. And they can make any type of unit from their faction, but there's more to it. I can explain that later. I found this particular being in one of my dungeons. I thought it was junk until I accidentally turned it on. The moment it was online, it immediately listed me as the owner and started to produce these soldiers."
"Unless we tell you otherwise, do not share this information with anyone." Valarie says, "I do not want my secret weapon to be revealed to the world."
"How come?" I blurt this out on impulse.
"Easy. These things are overkill. If people know that we have these machines as well, they'll band together to defeat me. This is an army that doesn't run on any sort of fuel. They're undead, regenerating their lives if they can do so. They can be made from the U.I.R., giving infinite soldiers. And they know no fear." Valarie lists these things, sighing, "I plan to use these guys for later."
"I have three U.I.Rs under my command." General X continues, "I plan to give you one of them... IF you do not ally with King Len. So if you ally with Jenine or Leon, your U.I.R will be with us, producing soldiers every now and then."
"Isn't this a bit... too much? I mean, you already helped me once-"
"Even as allies, we would want to ensure that you have a healthy relationship and practice these things." Valarie says, "Besides, I don't want to be outdone by the other rulers by their tasty goodies."
"But giving me undead robotic killing machines..."
"Your soldiers will be with us. They won't leave unless you need them. The other benefits of having these guys are their instant deployment to any world and any location."
"Excuse me?" I uttered, surprised at that benefit. "They can be DEPLOYED anywhere?"
"Yes. You saw the recording. Those undead machines weren't at that battle until they came out of the ground. I tested this a bit, and they can appear wherever you need them at. They can also recall back to the U.I.R if you give them the order as well."
"That's how you got the recording back. I was trying to figure out how your soldier returned to you without causing any sort of disturbance. If they had a recall function, no one would notice the difference of where they went to unless someone paid attention to every detail." Leilatha says.
“Define wherever,” Alice asks, "Because I don't believe that they can be deployed anywhere. Some wards and protections can stop such things."
”Anywhere.” General X repeats her answer, “They can enter any area despite the number of protections and secrecy. They will appear at that location if you will it. For example...” Silence looms through the air until six hands pop up from the ground. My party lets out a few gasps as we watch three regular looking undead troops pop up from the ground. They bore the same colors as the unit behind General X, holding weapons with a purple hue instead of a red one. Alice, baffled about this, tries to speak up.
”How can they... this place is warded and...”
”Yeah... these things are too handy. As you said, these things will make everyone into your enemies. How many of these guys do you have? And how many does that being have in their undead army?" Charlotte cuts Alice off, concerned about the power that this unknown enemy has.
"I can't answer either of those questions." General X shrugs, "The first question is none of your concern unless Valarie says otherwise. The latter, the one with our unknown enemy, I have no clue how many Undead Immortals this undead maker has. He could have a few. He could have several armies already. All I know is that he has a couple of U.I.R under his command. There shouldn't be any other method of making these Undead Immortals. Hell, I bet they have their own history and reputation, but I am not aware of any of it. I could speculate, but I would avoid it since I could be wrong." Charlotte didn't say anything, pondering on a few things. She didn't say them out loud, a familiar voice coming into the room.
"You always have some sort of surprise." Jenine steps through the field, ignoring the restrictions that should have kept her out. Then again, General X had turned off the device the moment she finished her sentence. "Alice, you should take Aisha around the place and go on your date. I need to speak with Valarie."
"Huh? But we aren't-"
"This will be a private meeting that doesn't require your attention. I know that I haven't told you everything, Aisha, but we will tell you in due time." Valarie gives me a small smile, "You should enjoy your time here and go on your date with Alice. Let us be grown-ups and deal with serious matters that you shouldn't fret with." I had a lot of mixed feelings about this, but I just nod my head. There is no point in arguing with Valarie.
"Let's go." I motion my party towards the door, leaving Valarie, General X, Beta, Gamma, Amelia, Charlotte, and Jenine.
I wish I could tell Aisha everything, but I don't want to spoil her that much. Or rather, I want her to figure out somethings in her own way at her own pace. Granted that she needs to be quick about it, I still want to dote over her. I let out a small sigh as I watch her leave, certainly showing some confusion and mixed emotions about the entire mess. I would want her to know everything, but at the same time, she won't change or improve in her own way if she gets help almost all the time. She has an edge already because she has us as her allies, yet she won't improve if this keeps going. There is a time and place for everything. The moment her party leaves the room, General X activates the field again, protecting our secret conversation. Charlotte asks me a blunt question, going back to Len.
"So he extracted genes from LIVE subjects? He obtained those perks by extracting their blood?" I close my eyes and nod my head.
Yes... I knew that this will greatly disturb Charlotte and General X although I know that General X has known and dealt with these things before. Jenine is a bit confused about what we were talking about, so I took out the armor piece from my storage ring.
"Inspect this item, Jenine. This is the same armor that Len's elite troopers are wearing." I toss her the piece, watching her inspect the armor I gave her. Even if we're not allies on paper, Jenine has the same sort of mindset as me and a society that is like mine... just a bit more civil and sane. Compared to the stupid amount of freedom I give towards my subjects, Jenine has a better government and society. She is just one of the few Witch Overlords who can issue out a command. If she issues something that the other Witch Overlords do not approve of, they will hold a meeting, taking a vote of if it goes through or not. Pretty much like a democracy, just with Overlord Witches who control the fate of the entire [Witch] classes and their cities. Not only that, since most of their cities are populated with women, the cities sort of promotes homosexuality. Sort of. It's not a must, yet being surrounded by a bunch of females all the time, it's bound to happen. I might have been an Overlord Witch if I didn't do what I did. The moment Jenine finishes her inspection, she tosses me the armor. She added a bit more strength in her toss, but I can see the fury in her eyes.
Oh boy, she's pissed.
"I knew that the man did something with those prisoners after his return from the Pillars of Gluttony and his claim over Zezrious. I asked him what happened to the people under the previous ruler of Zezrious. He told me that he killed them."
"He told you the truth... just didn't go into details on how." Amelia points out, getting a vicious glare from Jenine. I am a bit surprised at how Amelia is calm about all of this. Slightly. I can see a bit of fury from her though.
"The fact of the matter is that Len has already extracted genes. Especially in an inhumane way. I have no clue how this is possible, but I bet that Len combined the magic, laws, theories, phenomenons from this world with the science from my world to create these... weird effects. I have no clue how exactly, but I got a feeling that Len's lover gained a special class that shouldn't be possible." General X analyzed, "This is bothering me greatly."
"Or he has that class." Amelia adds, "He has the brains to do so. He could have been a genius if he wanted to go down that route."
"It sounds like you're certain that he might have the class." I noticed how Amelia was... being blunt and factual about Len. It raised a lot of questions and concerns. Amelia lets out a sigh, leaning on me.
"... Len and I developed a unique relationship during our times in the Pillars of Gluttony. When you and Brynhild weren't around, the two of us would chat... I won't tell you what exactly, but I know that he cared deeply for his lover. And by his words, he'll become a monster if anything were to happen to her. And he'll do whatever he must to get her back. YET he will NEVER endanger me or anyone with my blood. He admired me for my passion for chaos magic and the will to never give up... and then I admired him for his undying loyalty and love towards his lover." I bit my lower lip, forcing my opinions back down my throat. I am a bit upset at the fact that Len was this close to Amelia, yet... I shouldn't be. This is in the past, and it underlines Len's motivations now. Without this bit of information, I couldn't have come up with the conclusions that emphasized on Len's mentality and state now. I shoved a bit of the past from my head, recalling how pushy and possessive I am for Brynhild and Amelia. I still am. I can see the sadness in Amelia's eyes, knowing that she was remembering the old times when she...
I hug her, soothing her sorrow.
"Thank you," I whispered, "For telling me a bit of it."
"He... was a good man," Amelia whispers back, "He was." It's a shame. A shame that a great man like Len fell into... whatever he is now. General X, Beta, Gamma, Charlotte, and even Jenine do not understand how deep our bonds were. We did go through a shit ton in that blasted place.
But that was in the past.
This is now.
"So what do you plan to do, Jenine, [Overlord Witch Queen] of Aeston and the witches? Will you still be friends with Len? Or will you be wary of him?" I asked Jenine.
"The latter. I will not cut off ties with him and be distant from him. However, I will plan accordingly when the time comes to cut all ties from him and kill him. I cannot accept his actions even if it was for the greater good. What he did was a bit more than being a divine being or whatever you want to call it. I am going to assume that those bodies he requested will aid him in improving his soldiers even further. At the least, they're dead bodies..."
"I'm troubled to WHAT he ordered exactly. Care to enlighten us on that matter Charlotte? It is your call to tell us or not." General X turns towards the vampire. She answers, willingly, showing no hesitation in doing so.
"From what I gathered, our side had offered him various creatures that are highly dangerous, high ranking dragons to other creatures along with some dead bodies of high leveled individuals we kept around. We even gave a few of our demons, devils, and a decent number of Valkyries." I curse at this revelation. She didn't stop there though. "He also asked for several different ores, herbs, creature ingredients, and alchemy materials." I would want to say weird, but I got a feeling that Len has more schemes than just super soldiers.
"He's outfitting these super soldiers with unique gear. He might use these things for making specific perks for his super-soldiers, but the fact he asked for certain ore would emphasize more towards his technological advances... again. We need some sort of edge though. I CANNOT allow Len to usurp us in military might."
"We do have an edge against him, it's just that I won't play them until the time is right." I corrected, "I know you would want to improve our military might, General X, but we shouldn't flash it around like King Len." General X would have argued against me, but she grasped my hidden message rather quickly. I didn't even need to give her any more hints after that. She nods her head, stroking her chin.
"You're right. We should take our time."
"When it comes to that recording, did you intentionally show it to us so you can warn us. Or was there another reason behind it? Specifically, one directed towards King Len. It's not like I don't like you Valarie, but I got a feeling that you did this intentionally to push Len... forward. Give him a reason to actually show us his advancements, his troopers, and his plans for his super soldiers."
"You got me. I allowed General X to come to the gathering to purposely show that recording. It informed you guys about Len's firepower, but it also gave Len an incentive, a real reason, to announce his plans and create super soldiers. This will help us in the long run though since Len has a reason to stop and go after the mastermind behind these undead beings. You saw what his troops are capable of against those undead beings. Any normal army will not be able to handle such... extremes. The leader behind the undead demihumans had done an impossible feat. They somehow reanimate the corpse to be like their prior selves compared to an undead zombie. They can still think, they can still talk, move, use their traits- this one being is extremely rare and dangerous- but ultimately, they are just a better undead variant of themselves. And the fact that this leader can create weird abominations, hybrids, and new creations by mixing various body parts on an individual? I could send legions, hundred and thousands of fanatics towards the west to stop them. Yet, it would only fuel and add more bodies to this rising threat. If I didn't show this recording to King Len, I doubt that he would have intentionally informed everyone about his super soldiers. Hell, with his current personality, he would ignore the uprising calamity and this threat. I would want to use him than fight against him or not have his manpower on our side. Even if I could stall or stop this threat, I already got a bunch on my plate."
"Is this why he was agitated by the fact that you knew about this?" Jenine directs that question towards General X.
"Yes. He hates it when I know something that he doesn't know about. And this one got under his skin because it was related to his troopers. He knows that I have something that sneaked past these undead machines and captured that video, but he wants revenge on the guy that made a mess of his troopers and allowed this humiliation to happen. Even if King Len can be cunning, he is still prideful."
"So are you." I huffed.
"At least I will express my emotions to the fullest instead of lying between my teeth." General X says with a twisted smile.
"Even if you lure King Len into helping you indirectly, we are going to be tied up in this case, too. Along with the light side and any other strong faction that is within the vicinity. This is a threat that we have to destroy before it gets out of hand. With just ONE army, they took down two full-sized armies and a good battalion of Len's elite troopers. We do not need another faction with a force that can threaten the entire world. We already have several factions trying to assert their presence." Charlotte states.
"I will most likely inform my fellow Overlords about this. Not about Len, mind you, but about this undead threat and the need to do something about it. Even if we don't, I will try to create some sort of coalition forces to at least assist in some of these events that are transpiring around the world. Granted that I will also mention the revival of the Black Knights and their new leader." Jenine looks at me, "And knowing you, you might be asking for our help indirectly... Through Aisha. Right?"
"In a way." I smirked, "If Aisha does ally up with you, you are technically our ally, but not towards the public's knowledge. She gets some undead machines, and she gets your assistance and goodies."
"You know that you're the most powerful CURSED being in this realm, right?" Jenine sighs, "I doubt we can give you as much."
"I have done a couple of research in a few things that can improve on our military might. I know that I have no access to these various things I will need, but you do." Jenine just gives a weak smile, saying.
"Of course we do. You're not the only one who tries to tamper with curses and hexes. I think a lot of my people will be looking forward to your appearance... slightly. Those who are crazed with the need for knowledge to do more in their studies and work. There might be... a lot of concerns and individuals who won't be looking forward to your appearance." Jenine warns. I just roll my eyes, knowing that this would be the case. It always is. Although I do take great pleasure in watching people panic at the sight of me. It's funny.
"On a serious note," Amelia somehow took control of the conversation, being a bit serious than usual, "Did Len ask for prisoners of war after the Crusade is done with?" This snapped us out of our previous talk, realizing that this bit is crucial. I should have asked this earlier to Charlotte or General X should have said something about it as well. If King Len might improve on his soldiers or create more armor, especially the special armor he currently has, he will have to execute the same actions he did to make it. Meaning, he will need blood from LIVE subjects. I pray that the dark side didn't agree to give him prisoners. Charlotte frowns at this question.
"We agreed to it."
"Fuck." That was my response. General X lets out a stream of curses, kicking the ground. Jenine frowns at the response, shaking her head. I could guess why this has happened. It wasn't Charlotte's fault for this outcome. It was her higher-ups. All of us can understand how simple-minded those buffoons are. Well, I wouldn't blame them for their compliance. Give a bunch of materials that the dark side can easily gather to Len for an alliance? Sure. Give him a bunch of fresh dead bodies because they have them and there's no value in them. Sure, why not. Give him prisoners after the Crusade is over? Why not? The higher-ups want to secure their alliance and ties with King Len. A lot of people who trade and work with King Len are blessed with this fortunate boon. Who would be dumb enough not to give King Len what he wants? And these high-ups are hellbent on making sure that their alliance goes through. They want more worshippers, they want King Len on their side, and they want the perks and benefits of this alliance.
Sadly, they have no clue what they just did for this cunning bastard. Looking at Amelia, I think she might be a bit clueless about the reason behind this. From what General X told me, they only told her that they were giving Len fresh dead bodies. The fact that they had extended deals that the dark side didn't want us to know about means that they have already established deals that they didn't want anyone else to hear about. Especially ones that would raise a few questions from any other group. Either way, Charlotte explains why the higher-ups did what they did.
"We don't have a lot of strong allies. King Len is an ally we want on our side. No matter. what. After hearing and seeing what he has done, I would strongly retake the offers we have given to Len, but I am only one person against... however many higher-ups are within the dark side. I can state my reason to why we shouldn't, but then I will need proof and state my reasons behind my words. And a lot of people will think I'm crazy to say that King Len is a bastard and did inhumane things. He is loved by a lot of people... A LOT of people. It would be blasphemy to say such a thing. You know how Valarie has her fanatics, Len has his fan group that will do anything for him. Especially allies who idolize and will do what he says just because... they're allies. King Len has a lot of power just because..."
"He's the Bullet Hero of Zezrious. The Defender and Hero who stopped the Great Demonic Invasion. Or whatever you called it." I snap my finger as my undead machines went back into the ground, "I will have to deal with him when the time comes. But for now... we're mutual allies. Or something."
"Just because of Aisha." Jenine points out, "A lot of people are becoming friends because of her. I can see that you cursed her, but I got a feeling there was a reason behind that action."
"Yeah. I can tell you about that later. Did your daughter tell you why?" Jenine seems a bit puzzled.
"No," she shakes her head, "She didn't explain anything to me. I do have a few guesses. Just speculations. Especially when I look at that [Elven Tempest]. Leilatha?"
"Oh?" Interested in her analysis, I push her for an explanation. "Do tell."
"It seems like Leilatha is bounded to Aisha in a way. Something has forced her to be with Aisha. I don't know why or how, but it feels quite... odd. It has the properties and feelings of a curse, yet it's not."
"Really now?" I was nodding my head, but then I stopped myself. There was one thing I remembered clearly when it came to chaos magic.
There was no goddamn way for Aisha to curse someone. I mean, if she picked it up from an animal or being, that's a different story, but I don't think she killed anyone with those traits. Looking at Amelia, she voices out her thoughts.
"... Leilatha is bound to Aisha? What do you mean?" Amelia never tampered or learn much about curses. Letting Jenine explain, she plays with a strand of her hair.
"Depending on your rank, skill level, and knowledge on curses, you can feel and see the connection on an individual. All witches have this innate ability to see this connection. It may not be clear to them, but they should be able to sense if an individual is cursed or not. By having to expand on your knowledge on curses, you will be able to decipher a curse on someone rather easily. For example, a lot of witches won't be able to read the curse Valarie has inflicted on her victims. They can tell that the victims have been cursed. But that's it. They can't tell who inflicted the curse on them, what the curse does, how bad is it, how to remove it, and et cetera. Now, someone of my rank can see most of that information." Amelia awes at this. "There's a lot to go over, but for the sake of this topic, there's a certain... mist that indicates the person who cast the curse and the victim. When Aisha and Leilatha are close to each other, they have this mist around them, but it's... a weird mist that I haven't seen before."
Thinking about it, I noticed it too. But the mist is... transparent. It's like it knows that we can see it and is trying to hide from us. Yet back to the original question.
What is that? Aisha shouldn't have any powers with curses. Thinking back on the report General X gave me, I turn to her.
"Did anything weird happen between those two?"
"Not really. Just that Leilatha begged for her life and swore servitude to Aisha. Or something like that. I wasn't paying attention because of the mess I had to clean up that day. And some other things."
"I might need to bother Aish about that then..." I muttered. What did she do to Leilatha? If Amelia hasn't figured out what Aisha did exactly, it can't be from chaos magic. I don't think chaos magic can do such a thing... Then again, we haven't seen everything from our old master. I rub my forehead at this sudden realization.
A ring echoes in the room, halting our conversation. Jenine reveals a watch on her wrist. She clicks a button on the side of the watch to stop her alarm.
"I would love to continue our chat, but I got some important business to attend to." We did a small bow towards each other, letting the Witch Overlord leave the room.
"I should get going as well," Charlotte says, "It was nice seeing you again Valarie-"
"Hold on. We need to have a chat." I stopped Charlotte in her tracks. "General X, Gamma, and Beta take Amelia out of this room for the moment." Acknowledging my command, General X hands me the device as they escort Amelia out. Amelia wanted to stay. I can see it on her face, and she wanted an explanation, yet I shook my head at her. I cannot explain why I must have a private meeting with Charlotte. The moment they left the room, I activate the barrier and enforce it with my barrier as well. Charlotte and I stare at each other, understanding our deepest secrets. Well, not really a secret on my end, but I know her deadly secret. A secret that will get her killed and hunted for.
"You're a Cursed Ancient One. A being that has been blessed by the ancient witch herself."
"More like my family." Charlotte says with disdain, "I am Charlotte Lunar Bloodthorn. The last and surviving member of her clan. The one who protected her family's secret by slaying her own kin. By slaying my entire family and friends who attended that party that day." I flinch at her words. I didn't know that was the real reason behind her actions. The two of us stared awkwardly at each other.
We were lovers at one point.
Just that we moved on to do greater things. I moved on to find a group of gals I could call my own. Charlotte, even though we did it on multiple occasions and we were like best friends, she wanted to keep her distance from me. She most likely gave me a stupid lie that I brought. We both had our secrets, yet Charlotte had secrets that I could not and should not understand. Sighing, the two of us were... are different from our past selves. We are in-different leagues with different lovers, goals, and motivations now. I should have known that Charlotte was a bit too special because... well she is.
But even if she is different from her old self, even if we have moved on, I still want her to tell me the truth behind this big secret. The secret that she never told me even when we were together. This secret that ate away at her due to how big this secret is and the burdens that came along with it. I decide to lead this conversation since I started this conversation.
"You... The incident where you have slain your family and friends was because of your ancient curse. You had to kill everyone at that party?" I know that this will bring up bad memories for the Overlord, yet I need to know. Charlotte gives a painful smile, grasping onto her arm as she looks away from me.
"Yeah. I had to kill everyone. No one at that party was allowed to live. I had to kill the people I like, I had to kill people I had a crush on, I had to kill my own family members, even if they were babies. Valarie, I HAD to kill everyone at that party."
"Wasn't there a way to... spare those you like? Wasn't there a way to-"
"I can answer this bit of history for you." Appearing out of nowhere, Chaos shows up in her own set of chaos armor. I was shaken at her sudden appearance. "Calm down girl, you know I can do this. And I am the only one who would appear out of nowhere."
"Please don't do that without any warnings." I lower my hands, stopping the several spells I was going to unleash on her, "I have to expect the worse things every now and then. You know... People hating me and whatnot."
"I got it, but you know that only I can forcibly penetrate your barriers and know what you're talking about exactly." She changes her expression as she glances at Charlotte, "But... I have to thank you and apologize for your actions at that party. I know that SHE is grateful for your actions and will be forever in your debt..."
"She?" I raised an eyebrow at that. Who is this she Chaos is referring to.
"She as in Carmilla E. Etoile. An old divine being who overseed the Cursed Ancients. Especially for vampires. She ensured the vampire's safety of Cursed Ancients from other divine beings. You know that it is possible for a divine being to obtain ancient curses and use them against their fellow kind or breed these curses and misuse them for nefarious purposes. Carmilla prevents that from happening. No ancient vampire was abused or treated wrongly under her watch."
"I understand why the divine beings may seek the Cursed Ancients out, but I thought there was more to exposing and proving that someone was a Cursed Ancient. From what I gathered from those books I read, you have to have someone of the same blood testify such a claim."
"There are many ways to prove that someone could be a Cursed Ancient. In the past, a lot of people have accused someone of being a Cursed Ancient just because they didn't like them for x reason. With so many false accusations, the divine beings stopped caring about them unless there is some truth behind their words. Granted that we cast a simple spell to see if they're telling the truth or not, this isn't a common thing anymore. In the past, when Cursed Ancients were in larger numbers, this was constant motion, but now, a lot of people forget about Cursed Ancients. Anyways, if you have a family that can prove that they're Cursed Ancients, that will certainly appeal and grab the attention of the divine beings. If we cast a [Detect Lie] spell and it is true, then we will certainly investigate the matter or see if we can read the individual's mind to see their memories of this individual. The divine beings didn't want to do anything with the Cursed Ancients, but due to... advancements on our end, let's just say some divine beings saw how effective and how deadly these ancient curses can be. The old divine beings were tasked to stop this abuse and misuse of Cursed Ancients. I was part of the group that defended the Cursed Ancients, so I had spoken to Carmilla and assisted with several missions back then." Chaos stops for a moment, gazing at the ceiling above us. "Those were the days..."
"And what happened to them? Those who protected the Cursed Ancients?" I asked.
"They're dead." There was no joy in Chaos's response. Her eyes flash a spark of anger and hatred, her armor unleashing a small burst of fire around her before it calms down. "They were killed by the new divine beings who took over the entire realm. The council... or whatever you want to call them. They do not care about protecting the Cursed Ancients and they are doing things on their own agendas or sheer pleasure. Nothing like the glory days."
"I see..." Glancing at Charlotte, I went back on topic, "So why and how did this happen?" Chaos didn't answer my question. Charlotte closes her eyes as her frown deepens.
"It was sudden. I can still remember it clearly. My parents were overjoyed at my speedy growth and leveling that they threw a party in my name. I was one of the few vampires, maybe one of the few beings in the world, who was able to gain so many levels at a young age. I had a lot of help, but my race and my powers also played a key role in it. I tried to stop them, but they insisted that they needed to celebrate. If I was a bit more persistent and looked further into why they were so adamant about throwing me one, I could have prevented this tragedy. Regardless of that, I had a party in the end where everyone from my family, all of my friends, and important individuals that had ties with the Bloodthorn, attended the event. It was so normal. It was a regular party where everyone was fine. I was chatting with people I liked. Friends from school, adults I have met because of my parents or because of my standings, talked with relatives I have never seen for a long time... It was a good party." There was a small smile as Charlotte remembers the scene. It starts to die out when she continues her story. "The moment after my parents announced my achievements, they suddenly toss out a deal that they made with one of the divine beings." As she announced those last words, I can see anger and sadness overtake her. I easily piece it all together, understanding why this was bad. Even if I understood the message, Charlotte still states the deal.
"They sold our family to a divine being. They sold our curse, our entire existence to this stranger." I can hear her hiss through her teeth as tears roll down her face. I try to say something, anything really, but the words were unable to escape my throat. I frown at Charlotte's current anger and sadness, unable to relate with her. I remember the times when she would mention her guilt and her sadness over something. That something was the truth behind the Crimson Massacre. The famous murder spree that painted her as the Crimson Executioner. I would want to comfort her, hug her, whisper kind and gentle words, but I know that there's someone else who could do that. I would say some comforting things, but honestly, it can never relieve her of that pain. I kept silent as I watch her calm down. At that time, Chaos took over, explaining something that I wasn't... aware of.
"The moment her family announced their deal with a divine being, Carmilla reached out to Charlotte. As the protector of the Cursed Ancients and vampires, she gave a mission to Charlotte." The moment I heard mission, I quickly turn to Chaos.
"Hold on. A mission? You invoked a mission on Charlotte?!" Now, this has my utmost attention. Hell, this is my first time hearing that a divine being invoked a mission on someone who wasn't their champion. Chaos, not all too pleased with it as well, nods her head.
"Yes. Carmilla issued a mission that could not be ignored. She explained to Charlotte about why this was important and why she was chosen. I won't go into details about the latter, but once she told Charlotte to why this was bad and that she had to do this, Charlotte would have to kill everyone or Carmilla would have done it, slaying Charlotte as well." I am utterly speechless at this divine being. My eyes were wide open, staring at Chaos as if this woman is insane. Ironic since I'm not normal at all. The difference between a mission and a quest is that the quest can only be given if they are willing and are a champion under that being. A mission is completely different. This can only be exercised by the highest and strongest of divine beings for a just cause. The enslavement of the Bloodthorn's jeopardizes the freedom and rights of everyone within the family. It also gives the divine beings ancient curses that can endanger other divine beings and anyone within the world.
I silently shook my head at how there was no way around this. I think I knew the answer to my previous question as to why she couldn't spare the people that she liked. It doesn't matter about their age or their affiliation with Charlotte. The moment they see Charlotte slain her family members will change them. They would never look at Charlotte the same way as they did before all of this. They could never go back to their blissful youth. Talking about it is different from seeing it. I had never experienced this. I never killed a loved one. I didn't kill my own family with my own hands even when I wanted to.
Silence looms between us, giving me time to dwell on why Charlotte was chosen. Looking at her, it seems like she was able to get over her emotions. There could only be one real reason why Carmilla asked her to do this mission or die with her family.
"You were selected to be her champion."
"Yes." Charlotte answers with a crackle in her voice, "I was chosen to be her champion. She was going to choose me on the day after my celebration. She never thought that my family would sell themselves to a divine being whom she was keeping tabs on. She offered me a deal that was a bit too good to pass up on, but it was a hard choice between life or death. She froze time the moment she came to me, but I felt like we were having a discussion for a week or two in the unknown. I would have died with my family if she wasn't so persistent..." She lets out a huge sigh, wiping her face. "I... still question my choice, but what's done is done. I made peace with it long ago... It just hurts to bring it up again. I haven't told anyone about this for... years. You're the third person who knows my full story."
"Wait, third?! Who was..." I slapped my head. "You kidding me? I lost to him?!"
"Hey!" A bit of fierceness came out of Charlotte, "Don't you dare badmouth Gallant! He was there when I needed someone!"
"I-I'm not badmouthing him. I-It's just... I..." I didn't like how a guy was able to beat me. Not that I have anything against Gallant, just that I have this thing where I want to be number one... in a lot of ways...
"Ignoring your slight jealousy," Chaos pushes the conversation, "Charlotte has always been a Cursed Ancient before she even met you. Understand that this truth must be kept hidden by all means. You expose Charlotte's truth to the world or to anyone whom I don't trust, I will kill you."
"Like I would ruin the life of my former lover. Even if Charlotte isn't part of my harem, she's still a gal I will cherish and treat as my friend and ally. I will not expose her truth to idiots and assholes who might take advantage of her. You have my word." I seriously didn't want to mess with Charlotte and be an asshole. Even though I can be towards others, I won't do that towards those I care for.
"Good... I knew you would say that but just wanted to hear it from your sweet pretty mouth of yours. Just in case." Chaos gives me a smile of her own.
"Now... How did YOU acquire several ancient curses?" Oh... Heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh. Right...
A Cursed Ancient can tell if some other being has an ancient curse on them. By law (created by the witch who gave them their curses), Cursed Ancients cannot sell each other out or announce that this person has an ancient curse unless they are related to that individual by blood and race. So if a werewolf and a vampire both have ancient curses, they cannot give each other away. This was a safeguard that protected most Cursed Ancients. Now... Obviously, I wasn't born with the ancient curses and Charlotte knows for damn sure when I first met her, I never had one, to begin with. But right now, I have several on me. I let out a sigh, cursing at how I have to explain myself. A bit hypocritical to how I bugged Charlotte about her past and wanting her to explain it to me.
"It's only fair for you to do the same." Chaos coos.
"Yeah, yeah..." I let out a sigh. "I infused myself with several ancient curses from Cursed Ancients." I gave the basic gist of it.
"Infused them? How?"
"With my own body." I turn my eyes away from Charlotte, knowing that she'll snap at me.
And she most certainly did.
"What!? ARE YOU MAD!? You know how bad that is?! Let alone how dangerous- no, it would have killed you! Made you go batshit crazy. Like you would be more insane than you are now?! You know how bad that is?!"
"Aren't I already insane for being who I am right now? I have a lot of enemies. Everyone would be glad if I died-"
"Please don't joke around like that. You seriously used your own body as the catalyst to make your curse and control these ancient ones?!"
"I mean... I ain't joking. You can CLEARLY see that I have a new ancient curse with several old ones within me. I can easily conjure up curses with these old ones."
"You know why witches use cauldrons to do this, right!?"
"Blah, I don't like using those. Besides, it won't give you the true results that you're aiming for."
"You're completely insane..."
"I know I am," I smirked, "And you certainly like it."
"Liked." Charlotte corrected.
"Okay, okay," Chaos interrupts us, "I understand that you are still withholding the actual process from us because it is your own craft, but I think I will have to state another reason for my visit."
"You didn't have your fill yet? You interrupted a very intimate and personal conversation, you know." I pointed out.
"Well, I had to make sure of certain things. I just didn't come here on a whim for my amusement." She looks at us with a serious glint in her eyes. "Are you fighting in the Crusade?"
"I won't be there personally. You know this." I gave my response. "My general will be leaving a group of her elites to watch over Aisha and assist her when it's needed."
"I will be." Charlotte answers.
"That unknown threat is tossing a decent amount of soldiers towards the Crusade. Surprisingly. I know that Len has his intelligence network and yours, but trust me on this. Your forces won't be able to see them or detect them."
"Because they're invisible?" That's bad... Extremely bad. I mean, there are some ways for me to find them, but most people won't be able to detect them because of their undead machines.
"Worse of all... They got a new toy that they might use during their assault. I can't say what, but at the very least, I'll warn you two about the incoming threat."
"Thank you." I will have to tell General X about this, "I'll let my soldiers know about it."
"If you're telling us this, is it that bad?" Charlotte asks.
"It can be, but I can't say. Once again, I can only do so much."
"And there is one more thing. It's about the dungeon that General X might toss Aisha into." Oh?
"What about it?" I remember that General X told me of her plight in that mysterious dungeon that was close by.
"There are a few conditions that I want to set before you send her to that place..." Chaos stares right into my eyes, having a strange seriousness that I was not familiar with, "I think..."