"I'll keep your words in mind, father." Lionel said faintly despite having already cast those words to the back of his mind. "But, this matter isn't one we can ignore."
"As I've already said, the offer has been sent to Connery. The fact, that you're still saying it isn't so simple makes me think that there's something you're hiding from me."
Suddenly, King Belmont's childish side came out again, "Don't tell me…" King Belmont grinned, "Are you too scared to speak with this Madeleine girl? If you needed advice about women, why didn't you come to me sooner?"
Lionel was at a loss for words. Why couldn't his father be serious? The truth was that the problem was Dyon, but Lionel didn't know how his father would react to him trying to steal someone else's bride. But, Lionel also knew, from his younger brother Elwing, that this Dyon wasn't someone who'd go away simply because of the authority a Royal God Clan held.
If he let his father announce a marriage, it would be likely that Dyon would react violently.
It wasn't an issue of dealing with Dyon. After all, to Lionel, this Dyon was a small character. The problem was how Madeleine would react to Dyon. Lionel wasn't a fan of the idea of the Belmont family being tainted as cuckolds. But, at the same time, this legacy was too important to let go. He had already been planning on wooing Madeleine, but after months of being with her, that girl showed no sign of any interest.
Lionel couldn't understand how he could possibly lose out to anyone. But, logic dictated that he needed a new approach. If love wouldn't come first, it would have to come after marriage.
Shaking his head and ignoring his father's pokes and prods, Lionel finally told his father the situation. For the sake of the Belmont, the King had to know everything about this situation.
Surprisingly, King Belmont didn't respond as Lionel had assumed. Knowing his father, Lionel had thought that an adamant 'no' was coming. King Belmont was a man who often placed emotion above logic, or so Lionel thought. And yet, he was contemplating this?
King Belmont immediately noticed his son's surprise and sighed, "You've mistaken my decisions in the past as being overly emotional. The problem is that you have no perspective. If this was a girl you wanted to steal simply because she was powerful, I would stop you. In fact, the only reason I allowed you, as a prince, to campaign on another planet was because you didn't tell me about this Dyon character before hand. I would have never allowed you to even attempt it. You would have stained the name of the Belmont."
A purple flame burned in King Belmont's eyes as he bore his gaze into his son. "What did you think? That somehow because you were from a Royal God Clan that she was drop everything for you? Have you no context? No understanding? Do you know what that girl has been through? Why would she choose power over someone who truly cared for her?"
Lionel had never seen his father so angry at him. Even when he was rude and cold, King Belmont had never reacted this. Was what he had tried to do so bad? He couldn't help but be taken aback.
"Let me tell you now. Had you laid a finger on her against her consent, I would have killed you where you stand. You would have lost all right to be my son." King Belmont's words held no possible leeway. He meant what he said.
Although Lionel's face still hadn't changed from its standard deadpan expression, his surprise couldn't be understated… He had expected his father to disagree with him, but not to this extent.
King Belmont turned away, clearly struggling with a decision. He hadn't heard of this Dyon before. But, he had received a report just earlier today about a commotion caused by a fifteen-year-old boy… Someone who many thought to be the number one ranked on the list – the demon sage.
But, that wasn't the only problem he was struggling with. He knew that his son, Lionel, had enough talent to compete even with Dyon. There was a reason why Lionel could fight against high level essence gathering sons and daughters of the Uidah King God Clan despite having a drastically lower cultivation. Even if the reports about Dyon were as true as their exaggerations, King Belmont was still confident in his son winning.
The problem was Amethyst's legacy. No matter how moral King Belmont was, this faith seed was of unprecedented importance to their family and the martial world as a whole. To allow it to enter the family of someone else, would be nothing less than a slap in the face of every Belmont to have ever lived and likely a death sentence to many. This wasn't a simple decision…
Then, he thought of something else. This Dyon…
"Where did you say this boy is from?" King Belmont snapped back to Lionel, surprising him.
"The mortal world…"
King Belmont took in a sharp breath. He had made a decision.
"Unless you can beat him, don't think of having me propose this marriage." With those last words, King Belmont flashed into his cultivation room, leaving Lionel alone in the mountain range.
After spending so much time berating his son about not treating people as simple equations, King Belmont had almost let himself fall into the same trap.
By every measurement, this Dyon was too dangerous. He was too weak. He didn't have enough backing. And all of the compiled onto the fact that Madeleine's virginity and lineage held untold importance to the rise of the Belmont and the salvaging of the martial world.
King Belmont wasn't all-good and all-caring. He was a man who understood balance and nuance, while also understanding morality and the importance of ethics to a ruler. But, because of that, he also understood that what was right and what was wrong was always painted in greys.
Did the faith seed belong to Madeleine? Yes. But, there were lives on the line. Despite Amethyst's choice, King Belmont still couldn't believe that her powers would serve Madeleine and Dyon more than Madeleine and Lionel.
King Belmont knew and understood very well how the war Amethyst fought tied into the grander scheme. He knew very well how important the reintroduction of Amethyst's faith seed was to the current martial world. And he also understood that beyond the hopes of his ancestors, there were the hopes of the future resting on the decisions of the now.
But, he needed to see it. He wouldn't blindly believe that his son was the best option or that the Belmonts were the best option.
If this Dyon thought Madeleine should selfishly be his, he would have to prove it. He would have to overcome the shackles placed on him and his people. And, he would have to show the martial world that he belonged.
No one would care about his disadvantage. No one would care about his youth. No one would listen to any excuses he had.
If he wanted Madeleine, King Belmont could only wish him good luck.