THE Kingdom of Luyas, once invaded by swarm of Spirits, was now under construction of rebuilding the nation. With the helps from the people all over Fulaina, Luyas was slowly yet surely beginning to get back on its feet. Supplies had come from all a...
THE Kingdom of Luyas, once invaded by swarm of Spirits, was now under construction of rebuilding the nation. With the helps from the people all over Fulaina, Luyas was slowly yet surely beginning to get back on its feet.
Supplies had come from all around the world had been donated to the Kingdom ― from food to clothing to daily home supplies and so on. Volunteers have also come to help creating small shelters for the destroyed schools and also, offered to educate the children.
When the news had reached to the public’s ears of how the former Lord Ranfel had been captured and interrogated by the House of Eden regarding his involvement with the Spirit Invasion — it had immediately caused him to be stripped away from his title as the Lord of Luyas and had left the Kingdom without a Ruler.
After a big discussion between the remaining members of the House of Eden, they had all agreed that Luyas shall be under the watchful eyes of Lord Eden, and also, the Master Oracle until everything has settle down, or until they could find someone suitable enough to rule the Kingdom.
Luna had stated earlier she wasn’t ready to hold on such responsibility, and that there were plenty of things she needed to learn. She had stated her intention to refresh her course at the Knight Academy after everything has settle down.
As for Guy, who was supposedly the new replacement for the former Lord, according to Luna, he would tell them personally should he agreed to take over their father’s place as the Lord of Luyas after everything they had been through.
Too much things had happened that made him hard to simply nod his head at the moment.
The news of how Lord Eden and the Master Oracle would be temporarily shared the position of the Ruler of the Luyas had received many positive feedback and supports from the people of Luyas.
Unfortunately, news of how the former Lord had come as a deep shock to the people. Many felt deeply betrayed and enraged by his action. Some even went as far as wanted him to be assassinated.
In order to prevent such action to take place, Lord Eden had issued an order for the former Lord to be kept in an isolated place at the East of the Castle, known as the ‘Royal Prison’, away from the public eyes. He also had issued and ordered for the former Lord to be heavily guarded by members of the White Wolf and Black Raven Clans, whom he and Master Oracle had personally selected.
The Royal Prison was specifically reserved for the members of Royal Family and High-ranked Nobles who committed heavy crimes or broke the Laws to certain degrees.
The prison itself was originally an abandoned cave made into a prison. The interior design was mostly consist of various type of cage made from stoned-walls with a sheer bulletproof glass.
After the invasion, most of the senators and noblemen were released, with an exception for those who had betrayed the Kingdom and had sided with the Spirits for the sake of power and the promised status made by the Spirit Queen.
Three layers of doors and two checkpoints were needed for one to be able to pass through in order to see the prisoner, the former Lord Ranfel. Behind the main steel doors, there was another door that was tightly guarded by four members; each from the White Wolf Clan and also the Black Raven Clan ― the first checkpoint.
It was here where the members from each Clans would be doing spot each on the person who wished to meet with the prisoner.
After the first checkpoint, there was another door that led to the third and final checkpoint. The third door led to a wide chamber with a cage surrounded almost half of the room.
Inside the cage, laid a middle-aged man with wrapped bandaged all around his body. He was laying on his back against the King-size bed.
His eyes were closed.
The chamber’s walls were painted in light shades of purple and gold ― the very essence of Luyas. The chamber had all the basic things that one might needed: a bed, a nice netted rug on the floor, an old wooden wardrobe that was still in good conditioned, and finally, a complete study table, along with a chair.
The only thing that the chamber lacking of was a bathroom which was located outside of the gate. The chamber had a bulletproof screen instead of a window, with a few small tiny holes that was enough for the air to come in.
One White Wolf Clan member opened the door for someone who was waiting patiently on the second door and let for whoever it was to come in.
Once the door was opened and the said person entered, members of both Clans saluted to the man.
Lord Eden walked steadily toward the cage. He looked at the surrounding chamber and nodded, in approval. Though the prisoner had committed a huge crime, he had been once a respective Lord and thus, deserved a little bit of kindness.
At least that was what Lord Eden had told everyone when they decided to move him to ‘Royal Prison’ rather than the underground dungeon where most criminals and wrongdoings were kept.
Lord Eden’s eyes fell on the occupant of the cage, who currently resting and appeared to be asleep.
For about a minute, Lord Eden’s gaze was focused on the man alone before he finally took a deep breath, and ordered one of the guards at the door to wake up the man, albeit gently.
As the one of Black Raven guard approached the cage and unlocked the lock, Lord Eden gathered and revised all of his thoughts which he had been carefully assembled over a couple of days ago, up until now.
He had just came back from chatting with the Master Oracle via the communicator. He had informed Fye regarding the current ongoing investigation in Aquarius and also the new updates that he’d received for trusted sources.
As far as he concerned, and if what he was investigating turned out to be the whole truth after all, then that he needed now was a statement and confession from the Former Lord himself.
Everything made sense once the missing puzzles had been pieced them together. Starting from the First Spirit Attack, the Invasion of the Spirits, the missing Baron’s Portal, and lastly, the reason why the whole Kingdom of Aquarius being shunned away from the rest of the world ― all of them were connected to a single link in one way or another.
There was still one thing that Lord Eden had yet to figure it out though: why.
Why would someone as respectful like Lord Ranfel stooped himself so low like this for a cause that, no doubt, could ruined his life if he was found out? What was the real reason? When did it all happened?
“Sir, he has awaken.”
Lord Eden snapped out from his deep thoughts and nodded.
“Thank you. Please inform the others to make sure no one bothers us until I get out from this chamber. Call me only if it is an emergency. Understood?”
“Yes, Milord.” The Black Raven guard saluted.
Lord Eden braved himself as he entered the door. As soon as he entered, the door shut heavily behind him. He was immediately greeted with the uncomfortable stare belonged to the man, who was now in sitting position on the bed with his hands chained.
No one spoke for a minute.
After a moment of silence passed, Lord Eden decided to walk on the left side of the bed where a wooden chair, a small round table, and a cup of freshly brewed hot coffee were already prepared for him.
Pulling the chair for a more comfortable direction, he sat down on the chair without words, ignoring the heat gazed on him by a pair of watchful eyes.
“You’re just lucky to still be alive.”
Ranfel’s fingers jerked a bit.
“When they had found you, you were unrecognisable. Badly beaten up with two bullets pierced near to where your heart is. Had they were few more inches, you would have already died, ‘Lord’ Ranfel.”
Ranfel grunted. His fingers grasped tightly on the thin blanket sheet around him. Both of his wrists had been handcuffed and chained to the bed by a long chain attached to the floor.
He couldn’t complain of course. He had already made a scene earlier by causing a minor disturbance when they had transferred him from the White-Aid tent all the way to here.
In fact, some of the soldiers had thought Ranfel to be lucky that he wasn’t being put into a straight-jacket right away by the cute yet scary Nurse when the former Lord had sputtered rude words to her.
If she had, that would certainly be an insult to not only to his status quo, but also to whatever pride he had left.
“Why do you even bothered to come here, Lord Eden?” Ranfel in a deep hoarse voice. “Do you perhaps, come all the way here just to rub some more salt into my wounds?”
Lord Eden did not uttered a word. He merely stared at the latter through the mask. When he finally spoke, his tone as calm as a summer sea, and his voice was as clear as a bell.
“Not at all. I simply thought you should know that it was the good Lady Luna whom had treated your wounds.”
At the mentioned of his daughter’s name, Ranfel eyes grew widened.
“Luna? My Luna?”
“Of course. Lady Luna had managed to escape from the castle during the Spirit Invasion. She had bravely seeked out for helps from the other Kingdoms. Because of her bravery, we’ve managed to sent out helps as fast we could and reclaimed back the Kingdom.”
Lord Eden left out the devastating details of how the young was found by the Spirit Princess and her companions, badly wounded and almost dead in the forest by the riverside as not to add more griefs to the man.
“The good Lady had decided to join us as a part of the Medical and Volunteering team, as we speak.”
“She’s a lot like her mother.” Ranfel said softly after a long silence. “Brave, bold yet deeply insecure... My little Luna. She has so much potentials in her if only she tries her hardest and has confident to do so. I’d thought I taught her that when she was younger before she entered the Knight Academy.”
“Ranfel,” Lord Eden’s spoke in a tight voice. “For years I’ve been sitting in silence, watching the way you’ve been treating your children without uttering a word because I have no rights whatsoever to tell you on how to raise your own children. Well, not any more. For all the years you’ve been too blind to see what’s in front of you up until it was already too late, your children ― your daughter especially, has been trying her hardest to please you because you are her father ― a man whom she deeply loved and respected and carved for your attentions to acknowledge her by being just your daughter and not just a ‘Young Lady’. To a certain point, that she could no longer take in any more pressure and had to leash out all of her bottled up emotions to the only person whom never see any of the flaws in her ― the Spirit child you’ve kept with you for years, Her Royal Highness Princess Mika. Do not simply sit here and then said what improvement could your daughter should have made when you are the one who had rejected her and pushed her away in the first place!”
At his last few words, Lord Eden had abruptly stood up from his chair. His sudden outburst had immediately caught the attentions of the guards who were standing behind the door by a great surprise.
However, none of them moved from their spots.
Everyone knew the Lord was widely known for his cool, calm and sometimes eccentric behaviour. This was, perhaps, the first time ever, for the Lord whom had always keep a cool and calm head had leashed out the way he did just now.
Taking a long deep breath, Lord Eden sat back down before he lifted out something from the cold floor.
Ranfel’s widened and shocked eyes followed his every moves. He had been wandering what was the ‘thing’ the younger Lord had been carrying with him on his left hand earlier when he came into the room.
From his view, Ranfel couldn’t see it clearly what it was until Lord Eden lifted it up and put it on the small round table.
A voice recorder.
“What is the meaning of this?” Ranfel asked shrilling, the moment his eyes landed on the recorder.
“You should know by now, the crimes that you’ve committed could sent you to a death penalty.” Lord Eden replied calmly.
“I know you are a decent man, Ranfel. For all your arrogance, you are at least, a decent man. Which is why it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever of why a man of your status would take such a great risk that might not only jeopardize your status and title, should you get caught ― but also the safety of you and the people around you. Your family.”
Lord Eden pressed one finger the red button on the recording device, before looking up to the other man once again.
“For the sake of your children, please confess to what you’ve done. What drove you to do such thing in the first place?”
“Why? So that I may condemn myself even more?” Ranfel bitterly said.
“No. Mainly because it is the right thing to do.”
Ranfel shifted uncomfortably on his bed. His eyes were no longer gazed upon the Lord in front of him. Instead, they remained down to the cold, concreted and hard ground.
There was a long thick silence that neither Ranfel nor Lord Eden had ever been through.
For Lord Eden, he was willing to wait patiently for the former Lord until he was ready to confess. Confessing one’s crime was never an easy task, anyway.
A long heavy sigh came from Ranfel, captured Lord Eden’s attention.
The older broken man before him slowly shaking his head.
“..It shouldn’t ended up like this. This whole thing wasn’t apart of the plan... It wasn’t part of the deal!”
“What plan? What deal?” Lord Eden crossed his one leg and lend a bit forward.
“Everything started out twenty-five years ago no, twenty-seven years ago, to be exact. It all began with my beloved late wife, Anna.”
The Kingdom of Luyas,
Twenty-seven years ago.
A loud sobbing sound came from the Master Chamber, echoed throughout the corridors.
A group of maids who had been waiting patiently and anxiously behind the door gasped loudly when they heard the sound.
The Master Chamber’s door suddenly opened, revealed a middle-aged woman, with long ponytail grey hair, a white coat, and wore a thick glasses came out with a heavy bag ― a middoctor.
As soon as the woman came out, the maids were all but surrounded her, asking questions after questions.
“Is everything okay?”
“How’s Milady Anna? Is she all right?”
“More importantly, how’s the baby? Is the baby okay?”
The doctor shut the door tight when the sobbing had gotten louder. She then shook her head very slowly.
“The stress was too much for Milady Anna and the foetus to handle, unfortunately...”
The maids gasped. Their eyes filled in tears in seconds.Their sorrowful hearts went to the couple still in the Master Chamber.
A younger looking Lord Ranfel XII had wrapped his arms around his wife as he cradled and comforted her with soothing words, while she continued to grief at the loss of their supposedly third child.
That day was the darkest day of his entire life, to lose a child. It was supposed to be the happiness day of his life, the day when his beloved wife had told him that they were once again expecting the third child.
He had been so darn happy to hear about the news, so happy that he had nearly jumped off the window and demanded the whole kingdom to know. Of course, his lovely wife, Anna, had scolded him for such idiotic act afterwards but Ranfel didn’t care.
He’d been just so darn happy and blessed to hear about the news.
When his other two children heard about the good news, his eldest son had been looking forward to have another sibling. Guy, had been the age five while his daughter had just turned two.
The whole of that day had been in gloom after the devastating news of the miscarriage had been known throughout the nation. Leaders from all around the world paid their condolences to the Heartlet’s family.
That same night, Ranfel had to bear the pain of letting his children know about the loss of their sibling. It was extremely hard for the young children to understand and accept that sometimes their loved ones got taken away to a better place than here.
After consulting and drying up the tears of his daughter’s eyes, Ranfel had finally retreated to his own Chamber where his beloved wife was still laying motionlessly on the bed, staring at the celling.
The plate of food that the maid had left for her was untouched.
“My dear?” Ranfel gently spoke. “You must eat something.”
He got on his side of the bed and gently scooped his wife into an embrace. He kissed her forehead and then he whispered softly.
“It’s okay, my love. It’s not your fault. We’ll get through this hardship together... For now, you must eat, get healthy again and smile that sweet smile of yours that make me fall madly in love with you over and over again.”
Ranfel had repeatedly kissed her forehead until she finally ran out of tears to cry for the next two years and was able to smile once again.
One night after a week of the devastated news, Lord Ranfel had received a formal invitation to attend a gathering in the Spirit World from the Spirit Royal Family, nevertheless.
It appeared that the Spirit King, King Ferid, had sent out invitation to all of the Leaders of the World to come an attend his children’s Second birthday party and also to celebrate the Fifth Anniversary of the Human-Spirit Peace Treaty.
Of course, in his time of grief, attending any sort of party was the last thing in his mind, let alone, a Royal Spirit’s party ― whom he was not a fond of. Nevertheless, as the Leader of Luyas, it was his responsibility to attend.
Ranfel was however grateful that his good acquaintance, Lord Andania, would be attending as well. Amongst all of the Leaders in World, Ranfel was most closed with the latter mainly because he was a neighbouring Lord, and also, a man easily manipulated due to his relative ‘good’ newcomer to his title; his family nobility only stretched back a couple of generations.
Thus, the latter still had a lot more to learn in terms of politics.
As expected, the party was as grand as ever.
The Spirit Kingdom’s Castle had opened for to all including the commoners to attend to the party as well.
King Ferid, a commoner from the slums who had married into the Royalty, had actively encouraged the Spirit Noblemen to interact more with the middle-class commoners in order to tighten the bonds and disposed the barrier between those two.
Ranfel had not been a fan of most of his ideals. As a man who truly believed in the concept of ‘hard working always paid off’ in order to achieve success, he found that the King’s so-called ideal of combining society’s differences of status won’t last long and idiotic.
Why, his great-grandfather had been a mere peasant who worked as a Blacksmith before he’d entered the Knight Academy and passed the qualifications with flying cards and had to work his arse off to become the top!
With a great determination and strong wills, his great-grandfather managed to become a top Knight and then a Commander. He had eventually became the most trusted retainer to the former Lord and he had been even lucky enough to have gotten married to his daughter!
That was exactly why Ranfel had truly believed in. Without hard work, nothing will ever be achieved.
Ranfel had been so busy of letting his thoughts ran freely about the young King’s faults, that he barely paid any attentions, let alone, noticed the three presences behind him until a thick husky voice caught his attention.
“Are you Lord Ranfel Heartlets of Luyas from the Human World?” A small, wrinkled-looking old man wore a white suit, with a glass of sparkles on one hand, and two of his intimidating looking bodyguards standing closely behind him.
“And you are?” Ranfel rose an eyebrow by the flamboyance appearance of the older man.
“Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Haemon; of the Haemon Enterprises. I’m sure you’ve heard of it?”
“Who didn’t? The question is, what does the CEO of the famous multi-billionaire wants anything to do with me?”
Haemon had chuckled lightly at the long given description of his Enterprise. Haemon Enterprises was a private multi-billion business that offered the latest technology gadgets and machineries to whichever company that wanted them ― with special conditions attached to it, of course.
The Enterprise designed and created their own products, making them the most wealthiest business Enterprise in the whole of the entire Spirit World.
“My condolences to your family, Lord Luyas. It is truly unfortunate to have lose a family member.”
Ranfel briefly nodded his head. He then gulped on the drink he had been holding on one hand and finished it before making an excuse out from the old man.
Just as he had been ready to walk away from there, Haemon’s soft whispering voice cut him like a blade.
“I know how you feel.”
“Excuse me?” He said without turning around.
“You see, Milord, I too have lose a very special someone whom I’ve loved dearly with all my heart; my granddaughter. She’d left home recently. With a man far beyond her status.”
Slowly Lord Ranfel turned his head around to look at the older man who remained a serene face. Yet, his eyes filled with malice.
Now with his whole body facing the latter, Ranfel frowned deeply.
“Mister Haemon, I simply do not understand any reason for you to be telling me this sad sob story of yours in the first place. We don’t even know each other very well nor are we well-acquainted. Therefore, I must ask you to refrain from talking to me so casually especially about certain topics. Now, if you would please excuse me.” Ranfel walked away as graceful as he could be.
Haemon’s two bodyguards were all but ready to throw the rude Lord out of the castle when they were stopped by Heamon.
“Let him be.”
“Soon. He will be coming back to me when the times comes.”
Haemon took out a worn-out picture from his chest pocket. It was a picture of a beautiful young looking woman.
Haemon flipped the picture. At the back, there was words written in cursive on the picture:
’My beautiful Granddaughter, Rezalina.′
TWO long years have passed by since Lord Ranfel’s beloved wife had a miscarriage. Life moved on for the rest of the Heartlets family.
Though the sad incident would never be forgotten, life had to move on.
One fateful day, a messenger of the Castle who had just came back from a delivery errand in the town, rushed back to the castle. He had even fled across the hallway to the the inner part of the Castle to get to Lord Ranfel.
The messenger ran as fast as his small feet could carry him, all the while he muttered phrases such as, ‘This is bad!’ ‘Terrible!’ And finally he said aloud this time, ‘Damn those White Wolf bastards!’
After running around the castle some more, the messenger finally stopped in front of a chamber in order to catch his breath. He wiped the sweats on his forehead using the back of his sleeves, and took a long deep breath, before knocking on the door.
The messenger took another deep breath and then, he entered.
Lord Ranfel, who was busy writing off the paperworks on the desk in his office. There were a stacks of paperworks that needed him to review and signed.
Ranfel stopped writing and glanced up at the newcomer in his office. When he saw it was the messenger he’d sent earlier, he put down his pen and neatly cast the papers in his hands aside and to be reviewed later.
“Ah, just the man I’ve been waiting for.” Ranfel lend against his chair and made himself more comfortable.
“Enlightened me. What have our friends in the North-West have to say about our agreement?”
The messenger man swallowed the big gulp on his throat before he answered.
“M-Milord, unfortunately when we arrived there, the Clan’s Leader was not available. However! We’ve managed to proceed with the negotiation with the Clan’s temporarily Leader. A man named ‘Hazel’.”
Ranfel pondered for a moment. “And?”
“The negotiation when surprisingly well. Hazel had mentioned they will still need to wait for their Leader to return before they could agreed on anything. Within a week, he will let us know the answer.”
Ranfel nodded. “That will be enough as long as their Leader was informed about the agreement. I am not fond of the Clan,. I do however, trust their wise Leader’s decision. By the way, this ‘Hazel’ man. What does he looks like?”
The messenger started to stretch his head. “Forgive me, Milord. However, he was wearing a full clothed attire with the White Wolf mask on. Hence, it was hard for any of us to recognise his features.”
“But you’ve made sure that he was one of the Clans?”
“Yes, Milord. He had a white tattoo that symbolized the Clan and also, he’d swore he was the Clan’s temporarily Leader.”
“Very well. You may go. Thank you for your hard work.”
The messenger nodded his head. He took out the three sheets of the agreement letters from his pocket and carefully put them down on the desk, before he left the office.
After the messenger had left, Ranfel resumed with his works. He took one of the paperworks on the left side of his desk and put it in front of him.
He rubbed his eyes beforeyawning tiredly. The man had been doing these endless paperworks for hours every single day.
Ranfel looked at the letters in front of him.
The letters of agreement, in which the White Wolf Clan had promised to aid the Kingdom should Luyas be under an attack, since he had generously allowed the Clan to stay on part of his lands without even asking for payment.
In return, the Clan would help paying him back by keeping Luyas safe and sound from any intruders.
Ranfel may be a snob man, but he would do anything to keep Luyas a safe and sound Kingdom. Even if it means having to tolerate those barbaric savages.
Once again, he glanced at the papers and for a second there, he thought he saw something on the paper.
Maybe it was his tired eyes that were playing tricks on him. Blinking his eyes a few times, Ranfel looked at the letters again before he shook his head, got up from the seat and walked out of the office for a little rest with his family.
Prior to what being said by Hazel, Ranfel had been waiting patiently for a week to arrive.
By the third day of the week, he started to feel anxious, if not, nervous of why the White Wolf Clan Leader had not replied to his proposal the other day yet.
When the fifth day had arrived, and Ranfel still had not yet received any responses from the Clan, the Lord began to feel angry and upset.
He felt as if he was being mocked at when he was generously offered the Clan a small portion of his land for them to live on.
It wasn’t until on the Sixth day of the week, Lord Ranfel had received a sudden surprised visit by the White Wolf Clan’s Temporarily Leader,Hazel,himself together with his bunch of entourages, to inform him that the Current Leader was still unavailable to get in touch due to the Clan’s hectic schedules.
However, he had already informed the Leader of the situation and had been given a green light to proceed with the agreement.
Though it was all too sudden, Lord Ranfel had nonetheless, welcomed them. He had also invited them to stay over for dinner, to which the Clan’s Temporarily Leader agreed.
“The dinner was splendid, was it not?” Lord Ranfel commented, as soon as the servants came to take away the plates and served them the desserts.
The dessert was a molten chocolate larva mousse served in a cup ― a personal favourite of the Lord himself.
As Ranfel scooped a small mouthful amount of the mousse into his mouth, and tasted it heavenly, he then turned to look at his guests who ate the meals in silence.
“Once again, let me thanked you for coming all the way here. I wasn’t sure what to do had your Leader not answered to my proposal in time.”
“Rest assure, Milord.” Hazel spoke. “Our Leader is a wise woman. She wouldn’t let anything as significant as this passed by without her knowledge.”
“A woman? Your Clan’s Leader is a woman? How interesting.”
“Yes. Her leadership skills is equalled to the former Leader. She has been leading the Clan wisely for quite some time now. I hope there is no wrong with her being the Clan’s Leader together with your proposal?”
“Ah, certainly not! If you, a member of the Clan said that she’s capable of making such big and wise decision, then who am I to say no to it, correct?”
Lord Ranfel finished the mousse before setting the cup and spoon aside for the servant to take them away. He wiped his mouth with the handkerchief.
His guests did the same.
Once the dessert plates were taken away, the conversation resumed.
“Since your Alpha has bestowed the power of the decision to you, may I know what your answer to the proposal might be?”
The man stayed silence. Because of the mask he was wearing, Ranfel had a difficulty on reading the latter’s facial expression ― he was excelled in doing so.
It had helped him in difficult situations many times before, especially when he was dealing with people whom he was not very fond of.
Time strained to two minutes and yet, the man did not speak a word. Just then, all the sudden, Ranfel suddenly felt dizzy, and nauseous.
He held one hand on his head. His started to see double visions. Looking up, he saw his guests all stood up from their chairs.
The sound of metal hits on the ground echoed the dining room, followed by heavy bodies fell on the ground. Looking around with whatever energy he had left, Ranfel saw the guards were all laying on the ground.
“W-What’s the meanings of this?” Lord Ranfel barked, still fighting off the dizziness and nauseous.
Hazel man took off his mask and Lord Ranfel gasped aloud.
Blue eyes pierced at the Lord with such hatred in his eyes. He clutched his fists.
“You’d think I would forgive you for what you’d done two years ago? The dam that you had stupidly built surrounded our village had suddenly broke out into the village in the middle of the night, had caused a great flood in the village and lot of us to drown ― including my pregnant wife and children!”
“T-that was Nature’s incident! You can’t blamed me for such to happen!”
“YES. I. CAN!” Hazel took out a couple sheets of papers and shoved it to Ranfel’s face.
“These are Petition Sheets from the village to prevent you to built the stupid dam in the first place! Many of us were against it because for the obvious reasons ― the dam would not only polluted the water supply, but should anything happens to it, it would cost our village gravely. But you...”
Hazel clenched his teeth.
“You bastard won’t even hear us out or be considerate to our feelings and did as you pleased! Yes, it is your land and you are pleased to do anything you want with it, BUT, we had already asked of you to give us time to evacuate, and yet, you stubbornly proceed with the construction, leaving us no choice but to wait until it completed before we could moved out. When the dam had failed halfway during construction, you’d simply abandoned it! The debris washed away to the river and hence, polluted our water! That wasn’t the worse case; the worse case was that because of the abandoned construction, whenever it rains, the water would raised. We’d asked of you many times to get rid of the construction, but you’d ignored us until it was already too late...”
Hazel’s eyes burned in fury at the memory of that raining night. The rain wouldn’t stopped pouring. He had been to be out of the village at that time due to an errand, leaving his pregnant wife and two young children at home.
When the water had started to raise rapidly, everyone started to panic.
The Villager’s Elder had already informed the Castle and requested for the Luyas Knights to help, yet no helps had come. When Hazel had returned home a couple of days later, his beloved village was already gone and as well as his beloved family.
Despite his Alpha’s firm order and warned for any of them not to do anything stupid to Luyas, fearing the already strained relationship between the Clan and House of Heartlets gotten from bad to worse, Hazel could not forgive and forget about the incident.
He had been after all, the first among the people to protest about that stupid dam. Hence, his plans on retaliation against the House of Heartlets two years later.
The door of the dining room opened, revealed more of the White Wolf Clan members.
Behind them, Ranfel’s men were killed and laid on the ground.
“You took away my family, and my village from me. And now, I shall allow you to feel the same pain that I’ve been feeling for the last two years. Starting with your family.”
Hazel took out a hidden blade from his back and walked toward the exit.
“Wait! Stop!” Ranfel screamed.
He fell on the ground from his seat but couldn’t moved. His body had been paralysed from the drugs in the chocolate mousse.
Before Ranfel could do anything else, he had been knocked out by one of the White Wolf members.
By that time he’d woken up, his castle had been in a great mess and silence as graveyard.
As soon as he could moved his hands and legs, Ranfel rushed up the staircases, praying hard nothing bad happened to his beloved family.
All the sudden, he’d heard someone screamed, coming from the chambers ― His son’s chamber.
Ranfel’s heart had stopped beating the moment he stepped into the chamber, only to find that his beloved wife’s body laying on the ground, between his wife’s killer and their two children.
“Don’t...” Ranfel slowly took a couple steps forward. “Touch them. Please.”
Hazel’s blue eyes glowed in the dark as he stared down at the frightened children with emotionless expression.
One hand held on a blade stained with blood.
His eyes then fell on the mother’s dead body before him whom she had suddenly stepped in between, took the hit for them and died instantly.
“Do whatever you want to me. Kill me! Torture me! Anything! Just don’t touch them! Please!” Lord Ranfel called from behind.
Hazel continued to stare at the children before he eventually closed his eyes and sighed lowly.
He then bended down and took something on the ground ― a jade pendant.
“I will keep this.”
He then turned around and looked at the pale looking Lord with the same murderous eyes back in the dining room... before he did nothing and simply walked away.
LORD Eden remained in deep silence the whole time the former Lord was telling his story.
The recording device on the table beside him recorded everything.
Meanwhile, Ranfel bore the saddest expression Lord Eden had ever seen for as long as he’d known the man.
Taking a deep breath, Lord Eden finally said in a quieter voice.
“How did that connected with you, King Lewis and the Spirit’s Invasion?”
Ranfel rubbed his red nose and brushed few tear drops on his cheeks.
“Haemon had approached me again one day. He’d heard about the attack of the Castle and said he was very sorry to hear about my loss again. He then offered me something ― think of it as a little compensate for my loss.”
That evening skies had been painted in Byzantium, now slowly changing to Midnight Blue.
It had been beautiful, one of the very rare times Lord Ranfel had seen the skies changed its colour. As he sat on the soft couch at Heamon’s Enterprise Reception area, waiting for the man he’d came to see, Ranfel felt nervous, like a phantom slowly crept behind him.
Would this be okay? Would he regretted it later? Would it be worth it?
Those were the questions he’d been asking himself ever since the Elderly CEO had approached him the other day, offering him a compensate for his loss.
Of course, initially he’d refused the offer. To accept an offer from a stranger, even if it’s from a big-shot like Haemon, he still had too much pride to accept such offering by someone from the Spirit World nonetheless.
However, what had made him changed his mind that day was the outcome of the offer.
“Absolutely not!” Lord Ranfel shouted angrily. His face was turning red from anger. “Have you gone mad?!”
“Easy, sonny. I am merely offering you a compensate for your loss. Should you agreed to it, the profits would all be yours. Me? I just want my great-grandchild to be safe and sound ― away from the people who’d wanted to hurt him. I’ve lost my granddaughter, Reza, to that mean-heartless bastard she’d called her love two years ago in an accident. I am now doing whatever I can to help raise my great-grandchild in a safe environment ― away from her own heartless father.”
“Prey tell how do I fit in this little plan of yours?”
“I’ve heard that there was a human man in your world who had successfully invented a portal that would allowed one to teleport to anywhere as one pleases known as ‘Baron’s Portal’. Am I right?”
Ranfel frowned deeply and crossed his arms on his chest.
“That portal is unstable and dysfunctional. It is unfit to be use by anyone, which is the main reason why I’d disagreed with it in the first place.”
“Indeed. And which is why, I’m offering to help you to fix with all the portal’s complications. My company has all the tools that needed for the portal to be fix. To make it more stable and usable for the others to use. Please, all that I asked of you now, is that you help me convince a King from the Human World, King Lewis XIII, to let me borrow the said portal he kept in his kingdom for just a little while until I can safely transport my great-grandchild to a safer place away from here. Help me save my only great-grandchild’s life. Please, Lord Ranfel. In return for you helping me, I would helped you gained more powers than you already have so that you will be feared by many. I have connections. Lots of connections. And I would also provide you the latest gadgets that we have to make sure that you are able to win your battle against any enemies. That is my compensate for you, so that you may not lose any more of your loved ones by the hands of them.”
RANFEL sighed heavily and looked at the side. Eyes still looked down at the cold hard ground.
Still sitting beside him, opposite of the cell, Lord Eden stood still. His eyes widened and even his mouth was opened.
“Needy to say, I did all I could to make sure King Lewis let me borrowed Baron’s Portal. I’d blackmailed him for the construction dam that the two of us co-owned. I’d told him if he refused to cooperate, I would give hints to the White Wolf Clan that he’s involved with the construction too and have them destroyed his castle the same way they’d done mine. However, if he agreed to help me, I’d promised I would include him under the protection of Haemon’s Enterprises as well, for as long as he won’t betrayed me.”
Lord Eden didn’t say anything.
“His Majesty was tempted by the idea of course.He’d scared that if either you or the previous Master Oracle about his involvement, his position would be threatened. But I’d convinced him otherwise and he eventually agreed. Before using the portal, Lewis had suddenly came out with an idea; in order to fool everyone, he’d suggested we duplicate the Baron’s Portal. I’d given Haemon the replicated one and he had it fixed instantly. After he’d done using it, he had his men to give it back to me and I kept it in the walls, in the secret chamber underneath the Castle, for which, I’d absolutely sure that no one would never found out.”
“So the real Baron’s Portal is in Aquarius?” Lord Eden finally found his voice.
Lord Eden was speechless over the matter. He knew the former Lord was a shallowed man, but even so, he’d thought the man would stoop this low for the sake of power ― even if it was to protect his family from harms.
“Yes. His Majesty kept it safe under his belt for years. Since the Spirits had successfully invaded Luyas, he’d must have assumed I betrayed him and told you people about his involvement and his position being threatened. Hence, he freaked out. That’s probably the only reason why the old bat had set up the barriers surrounding his kingdom!”
Lord Eden turned the ‘stop’ button of the recording device and got up.
“Thank you for confessing the truth, Ranfel. I know it’s not an easy task.”
Ranfel snorted and chuckled mockingly.
“Save your sympathies for that cowardly King. I know what I did was wrong ― terrible even. Yet, I’m not running away and hide behind my own Castle like someone we know. If I get caught, I’ll accept the consequences.”
Lord Eden turned and walked away to the front door. He was just about to knock the door to let the guard know that he was done when Ranfel spoke softly in unusual tone.
“I’ve confessed everything up to this point. But let me tell you this to defend whatever rights that I have left; the war was never part of my plan. Should I’ve known about it, I wouldn’t agreed to his so-called ‘compensate’, and none of these would have happened.”
Lord Eden knocked on the door twice. It didn’t take him long to wait for the guards to open the door.
All the while, Ranfel kept on shouting at him:
“I admit, I screwed up big time when I’d lose my wife, the love of my life in this lifetime. I also admit that I haven’t been a good father that my children deserve, or even a good Master to a Spirit Child whose only hope of survival is me. But, I swore to you on my late wife’s grave, that none of these is part of my plan. All I’d wanted was to protect my family and this Kingdom.”
Lord Eden who had been quiet finally turned his face to look at the man.
“There are many easy other ways for you in order to protect your family, my friend. Yet, you’d chose the hardest long way to do it. In the end, what did you get? Was everything that you have been keeping all this while, was it worth the efforts? Having your only children hate you for what you’ve become. Losing everything. I hope while you are stuck in here, you reflect everything what you’ve done all those years and make amends one day. Good day.”
Lord Eden entered through the door and shut it tightly.