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52% A New Beginning in a Mana Apocalypse / Chapter 51: Chapter 51 - Empresses

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Chapter 51: Chapter 51 - Empresses

We all ended up gathering in my room. Several wanted to gather in the suite Grace's family was using but I refused. It was hard to explain my reasoning, but I wanted to be independent, which would be hard to do if I kept borrowing their room for meetings. I could take the room for myself, as the money they paid for the rooms was no longer a valid reason for the retention of the room, but I didn't see any point. Once the haven was up there would be a change in the dynamics of the group.

All of my girls showed up to my room including Rebecca who had Emily and Bryan in hand. I had Grace grab Momma and Kelly so they could meet the siblings I intended to put in their care. Even though Trill and her birds had come with us I felt having humans look after them was still the best idea.

I explained to everyone what had happened when we went to check on Tracy's family. The attack of the wolves, the meeting with Trill and her people. I included our issues with Tracy's family which she didn't like given the scowl on her face, but I kept most of my own thoughts and opinions to myself. Especially since I didn't really trust Derek all that much either.

Once everyone was caught up Derek decided to let us know what he and his people had come up with to satisfy our need for supplies.

"Using the internet while we still have it we were able to identify several distribution centers." Derek told us.

"Distribution Centers?" I asked unsure what he was talking about.

"All the chain stores have distribution centers where they gather products before shipping them out to to the various stores. As each distribution center has to supply for multiple stores, so we can guess that there should be plenty of supplies available in each." Derek told me then pulled out a map showing the locations of several distribution centers located in Las Vegas, and Denver. "This will be faster than hitting the all the stores one by one." he added.

I had to agree. Even with my space tunnel it would take a while to hit tens to hundreds of individual stores. Though that would still be an option if we couldn't find enough supplies in the distribution centers.

We discussed which ones to hit first and when to start for a while before we agreed that we would wait till morning and give everyone a good night's rest. With the advancement of Nala to beast empress nothing was willing to come close to this hotel. In fact they left such a wide margin around the hotel that I was sure we could take another hotel that was located next to this one with little risk.

With plans in place Derek excused himself leaving me alone with Momma, Kelly, Trill, and my girls. Trill's birds had all went up to the roof where they had access to the sky. They were going to act as lookouts beyond what Derek's people could do. Surprisingly Nala's wolves followed them.

The atmosphere in the room was tense but I ignored it. Bringing Trill here did not automatically mean I was planning on making her a part of my harem. Which meant I had done nothing wrong. As I had done nothing wrong I had no intention of acting like I had.

I tried to comfort Heather a bit while pointedly ignoring the glares Momma, Kelly, and Megan were giving me. Heather thankfully had cried herself out and was just cuddling in my arms as she came to terms with the fact that Bryan was her only blood relation remaining.

Momma seemed to have run out of patience with me. She grabbed onto my ear and twisted in such a way that despite my four stars in my body ability I was still in nearly unbearable pain. "Hey!" I roared at the little woman angrily.

"Pay attention!" she yelled back in return.

I looked around, "What?" I asked them.

"What are your intentions?" Megan asked looking towards Trill.

"An ally and a powerful one." I replied honestly ignoring my own attraction to the woman. I already had twelve women I claimed, and while all weren't completely set in stone they hadn't left yet. I also had the silver twisted in my space pocket so that put thirteen females in my hands. No matter how interested in her I was I had not brought Trill here to make her my fourteenth.

"She has to be your bride." Nala dropped a bomb with a completely seriously expression which was a change from the bubbly excited girl she had been since she advanced to gold.

"Huh?" I asked looking at her in surprise.

"You can stop hiding it now." Nala said looking at Mary.

Mary sighed but nodded. A moment I could feel her aura change increasing in strength until it matched Nala's and Trill's.

"Since when?" I asked the green haired anime girl.

"Since our bond." Mary replied. "I didn't want Nala or Megan to feel threatened by me." she replied.

My jaw dropped, how did I not notice that?

"I said earlier that there are things about me I need to tell you. I will not do that here and now, but eventually when we have a chance to be alone." Mary told me. "Just know I have the most practice of all of your empresses. Once the haven is established I can help you learn to hide your aura, until then it is best you don't. Having so many emperor level in the same place will scare off all other threats including other emperors."

I nodded by curiosity running wild with different theories each more bizarre and unlikely than the last.

"Back to why she has to become his bride." Megan interrupted.

"If she doesn't she can't stay with us." Nala replied. "If they aren't mated then even as allies they will butt heads too much to remain in the same territory."

"That doesn't make any sense." Megan retorted.

"That is because you are human." Mary spoke up supporting Nala. "The relationships between humans are different than those of beasts and plants. Amongst the beasts the strong rule over all the others. Emperor class beasts are the strong and they all feel that they should be the rulers over everyone else. When two emperor class meet they will always fight for dominance which will only end in death or complete withdrawal of the loser. The only exception is mates." Mary explained. "If Trill is going to stay with us she will be mates with Daryl just as Nala and I are."

Megan glared at me again. I groaned. I had only been a real beast emperor for an hour? Two? Why was it bringing me more trouble.

"What you really need to understand is the fact that there are going to be more." Trill finally spoke up. "Among us those who approach you will be the weak looking for a safe sanctuary where they can thrive, in return for that they will swear their loyalty to you. Male emperor beasts will only approach to claim your throne, females will approach to claim you for their offspring, or for your throne, probably both."

"Including you?" Megan asked Trill.

Trill was silent for a moment. "Yes, and no. We had some reasons to leave that area. His space tunnel allowed us to leave without being tracked. If he and I weren't capable of being mates me and mine would leave and establish our own territory." Trill replied.

Now while all the rest of my girls were still glaring at me they seemed less tense.

"What about the plants?" Karen asked.

Mary hesitated. "Plants have a different mentality. We do not normally even have genders. Daryl and my situation is rare, maybe even unique. If plants approach us it will be to attempt to make us into their fertilizer." Mary replied.

"All of them?" Tracy asked.

Mary nodded. "All of them. Beasts need to mate for offspring, plants do not. Offspring just suck up nutrients we could use for ourselves."

Everyone stared at Mary in surprise including Heather who had finally settled down and turned her head to listen into the conversation.

"All the limitations we had as plants disappeared the moment this world was flooded with mana and we became sentient. Do not mistake sentient plants for the plants you are used too. Our only desires is to gather nutrients so we can grow and find even more nutrients." Mary told us. "My bond with Daryl changed my perception as a plant, but my desire to grow and collect nutrients is still there."

Mary turned and looked me straight in the face. "While the beast form increases your libido and encourages your to expand your territory while claiming females to mate with, the plant form is simply encourages world domination. Absorb nutrients to grow so you can gather more nutrients until you cover the entire world. Smarter plants learn how to build an ecosystem to continually provide them with nutrients but only the smartest do that. The rest just absorb, grow, and develop methods to draw more nutrients to themselves. Do not use your plant form unless you are prepared to resist that impulse or you might return to your human form to find you have killed and absorbed all those you hold dear."

A chilling morbid thought.

"Fine, plant form is forbidden for now, let's get back to the topic on hand." Megan spoke up breaking the odd atmosphere in the room.

"Is there really a need to continue this discussion?" Karen asked pulling Megan close to her and wrapping her arms around her waist.

"For Trill? Of course. Nala and Mary seem to want her to stay, but neither Trill or Daryl ave agreed with it. " Megan pointed out. "Also we should decide as a group how we should handle any others who approaches. If we were to include Trill we have three beasts already, is Daryl supposed to accept every beast empress that approaches him?" Megan asked.

Trill, Nala, and Dena all shook their heads. "No." the said together.

"I can lead the predators, Dena still needs to advance but Mary agrees with me that she has the potential so she will remain as one of his empresses and leader of the herd beasts, If Trill chooses to stay she will be empress of the skies. Only if another empress approaches that does not fall into those categories will we consider adding another." Nala informed everyone.

Megan looked obviously relieved. "Thank heavens!" she exclaimed.

Everyone turned to look at Trill waiting for her response. "Don't I get any say in this?" I asked irritated that they seemed to have already decided for me.

"No!" all the girls replied as one.

"Just checking." I replied then shut my mouth. So much for growing a backbone and taking charge of my life.

"We already know your answer so stop trying to pretend you don't want this more than anyone here." Karen told me.

Trill looked at me meeting my eyes. I couldn't refute what they said and I had to admit to myself that this was what I had been hoping would happen when she came with us. Though I hadn't expected it to happen so quickly.

"I will stay. With this group I am sure we can claim an large territory with little trouble." Trill told us. "Though if I am staying we also need to advance you to gold as soon as possible." Trill commented looking at Megan.

"Huh?" Megan asked.

"With three empresses and a potential fourth, there is no way you can remain as the lead wife as you are." Trill replied then smiled and put a finger on Megan's mouth to stop her explosion as she got angry. "You also have the potential or no one would have deferred to you no matter his intentions or feelings." she added. "We just need to help you hurry it along before someone else thinks to challenge your position."

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