When Lia barged into my room and dragged me to see the kid, I kept thinking of the things that Father told me. I couldn't find a way to tell this to Lia without damping her excitement about the kid waking up after five days of her care. And so we arrived at the guest room.
The child was clearly wary of our presence and yet Lia continued speaking to it without the slightest clue.
"Lia, you are troubling the child."
Lia looked confusedly at me.
"Because you are speaking so much the child is confused."
Realisation dawned on her and she apologized to the kid. The child seemed shocked at her apology and asked Lia timidly where she was and why.
"This is the mansion of the Marquess Zephyrus. You were picked up by my sister, the Young Lady of this house."
I saw the kid's eyes widen at my answer and her head bow as she spoke words of gratitude. I could discern the hidden contempt and fear in her voice but I let it slide. Father ordered me to only observe her actions. He will probably act himself. Lia needs to be more cautious in the future.
I told the maid to clean up the kid and left.
As always Father's presence is overwhelming.
"It seems that the kid has awoken."
"Bring it to the audience chamber at noon. Liana should also be present."
"Understood. If I may be allowed to inquire, why have you not gotten rid of that child? It's a runaway slave."
"Did you find the reason why the mansion of Baron Moss got destroyed?"
"That child was a slave bought by the Baron for his more 'nefarious' activities."
I frowned."The cult that His Majesty asked us to purge?"
"Correct. My shadow guard found her in the basement where the Baron kept his 'pets'. The report says that she was the chosen 'sacrifice' for their ritual yet unexpectedly she's the only one alive who is a witness."
That is certainly very odd. For only a slave to survive when everyone else died should be impossible.
"Is she the culprit?"
"It is hard to tell. It is impossible for a child like her to destroy such a fortified mansion but there isn't any other evidence. We need to keep her alive to find the truth"
Indeed we need to give answers to His Majesty as to why all of them died.
"I see. I will follow your orders."
I did not expect that girl to be linked to this case. *Sigh* Lia picked up a troublesome girl.
What in the world just happened? I question as I look at the bleeding child on the floor. I turn to Father where he stands tall looking down at the child.
"To think that such a weakling was able to kill Baron Moss. He must have been quite useless. Ashbel clean up this mess and get rid of that child."
"Understood." I feel my hands trembling as I answered. I did not expect her to be able to use mana.
"No! Father, don't kill that child!"
"Liana! You know that that's a runaway slave! It should be hanged in the gallows!"
"I don't care! I promised to protect this child!"
I have never seen Father get so angry at Lia before.
"Lia, stop being stubborn and listen to Father!"
It's not wise to anger him anymore than this.
"Hahahahahaha!!!!" The crazy laughter sends chills down my spine. I stare at the girl in horror as she stands up. I feel a heavy bloodlust emanate from her. She seems different somehow.
I look at Father. This can't be good. He nods at me.
Fine. I don't have a choice.
Aelin pov :
As I heard the words of the Marquess and his daughter, laughter spilled out of my lips. The girl's desire to save me… it's laughable. Does she think she's a saint? The only reason why she can spout such words is due to her family. A kind girl like her would die instantly in a place like the mines.
"Ha-ha… Fuck it all."
Ugh my whole body hurts. That damn Marquess really hit me hard. I have lost a lot of blood. I might pass out any second.
"Stop this stupid act. You're making me want to vomit. If ya wanna kill me do it already."
Ah shit it's hard to stand… That Aelin... she finally let me take control of the body…
"You're injured! Stop moving!" The girl warns me.
"Stop that Lady. Nobles like you shouldn't get close to a 'cursed child' like me. Besides I can't afford to accept your benevolence. You should show that kindness to the nobles, not me."
"What are you saying! I don't care if you are a cursed child! I vowed to help the people and so I won't let you die!"
Her brother sighs when he hears her words. "It cannot be helped." He pulls the girl and knocks her out, turning the room silent again.
"Let us end this." The Marquess drew his sword.
It's do or die. I don't have a choice.
I had let this act play out to buy some time. I had gathered every last bit of my energy to kill the Marquess in one shot. That's why I let him use magic to hurt me in the beginning.
'I can only use this once. The rest is up to you'
I tell Aelin.
It's okay, you wanted to fight anyway, go all out.
"I won't let myself be used again!! So die you noble pig!!"
I released the gathered energy at the Marquess with the intention to kill.
A blinding light fills the room and the shockwave makes the room shake. I ran to the door only to see the brat standing in my way.
"You shall not pass. Flame prison!" A cage of fire erupts and surrounds me burning my skin.
"Argh!" The Marquess stabs my back.
Even though he should have been injured at least…
I don't want to die like this. I finally have power. I finally grasped another chance. I can't…
As you might have noticed, I'm not good at writing fight scenes. I hope I was able o conve he gist of the fight.
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