The Star of Annihilation
Chapter 33 – Lazarus (2)
Written by : Eleven
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A dark and ominous light spread out from the corners of Ferneth’s shadow, and Roy recognized this as the same thing that had happened when he first met Ferneth.
Seemingly for everyone in the Imperial Palace, the world suddenly turned completely black.
Ferneth bowed his head in embarrassment.
It was true though. He felt like the wall to forming his eighth star, was shattering and he was close to becoming an 8-star Grand Wizard.
But it still didn’t feel good to have so many people staring at him warily and in fear.
He may be a Lich, but that didn’t mean he liked having so many gazes of fear and mixed hostility, pointed at him.
“Aha! Truly great.. It truly is a good thing!”
Navarro Ismenian, stood up and applauded.
The other government officials didn’t know what was going on, but followed the Emperor’s actions in applause while keeping hostile and wary gazes.
[Ah… thank you.]
Ferneth warily expressed his thanks but felt relieved as he reeled back some of the dead mana around him.
“Well then, are these two boys the ones?”
“Yes, your majesty.”
“Interesting. Step forward, both of you.”
Navarro asked Lucius as Lucius replied and urged Nate and Roy forwards.
Rubbing his chin, Navarro seemed to be deep in thought as he looked at the boys.
“So… one of you is an Apostle, and the other is a contractor of an unknown Spirit King.”
Roy’s eyes widened.
He hadn’t told anyone of the fact Ifrit was a Spirit King, yet the new had already reached the Emperor this fast.
‘No, I should calm down. Preconceived ideas will get me nowhere.’
Roy regulated his breathing as he tried not to show that he had been slightly rattled.
But Navarro hadn’t been an Emperor for nothing as he caught on quickly.
“Don’t be so vigilant aha! This is the safest place on the entire continent. If anybody was to know your secret, it might as well be us.”
Roy just frowned in his head as he didn’t dare move a facial muscle to show the displeasure of the Emperor’s words.
“Well then, I’d say it’s time for rewards.”
Multiple people in the audience were shocked.
The three Imperial Princes were no exception, but it was for a different reason.
Anything, no matter how small or big, was something that needed to be taken into account when fighting for the throne. Even if it was nothing but an achievement for a vassal, it was something that could bolster their faction to take the lead.
However, Michael and Howards knew that they had not made significant contributions this time around, and it showed on their sour faces.
“So I heard you and your contractor were the ones to slay the beast, correct?”
“That is correct.”
Roy bowed his head and kept his eyes lowered.
“And as for you, you helped us get rid of the pesky interference of the Holy Church. Although I can’t publicly reward you for these feats as each have their own implications, do know I am pleased.”
Roy and Nate looked at each other briefly before Roy opened his mouth.
“Both Nate and I, express our sincerest thanks for your words, your majesty.”
Nate nodded and bowed.
However, there was more to come.
“Desmond, my son, please step forward.”
Desmond stepped forwards to the same distance as Roy and Nate were, from the Emperor.
“And you, were the one to convince these two to join our ranks in the Empire in full, is that correct?”
Navarro gave a pleased smile and nodded his head. Then, he turned to look at Howard and Michael with complete indifference etched across his face.
The two princes shuddered, as this was essentially psychological warfare that the Emperor; their own father, was waging against them.
‘Those lowly bastards…!’
Howard grit his teeth as he briefly turned his fierce glare at Roy, Desmond, and Nate.
‘Those bastards… if they dare to continue to humiliate me like this, I will force my hand!’
All sorts of terrible schematics were being plotted in Howard’s mind at that moment while his pride was severely wounded.
“And I guess…. It’s time for you both to choose something. But…. rather than that, is there anything you two want?”
Navarro Ismenian gave a toothy grin as he stared at Roy and Nate with an expectant expression.
‘He’s testing us.’
–Correct. As a former Spirit King, in the Spirit realm, we often tested our subjects like this to determine their motives.
Ifrit gave his input as Roy had guessed correctly about why Navarro Ismenian was giving them a choice.
Roy looked at Nate as he remained silent.
He then looked back towards Lucius and Desmond. Finally, his eyes settled on his mother, Mathilde.
She was smiling at him faintly.
Roy realized it was alright.
Thinking of something he wanted was not hard, and if anything, this request should be incredibly easy for the Emperor to fulfill.
‘My master isn’t going to like this Ifrit.’
Ifrit was confused by Roy’s thoughts, but suddenly realized what he was about to do and chuckled.
“Your Majesty…. I do happen to have a small request actually.”
Roy spoke with his head bowed and eyes lowered.
Everyone’s ears perked up suddenly at Roy’s words.
Nate looked at him with a blank but slightly confused expression.
There were rewards for both of them, and Roy was going first. Nate didn’t know what he wanted to do; he figured this would be a good opportunity to see what his best friend would ask for.
“I know that my new master, Lucius, has even become a temporary instructor at the Imperial Academy, and that my admission has already been approved thanks to the First imperial Prince’s graces, despite being too young…”
Roy spoke the words and hesitated for a bit.
“But I was wondering if I would be allowed to take a temporary break from that and be allowed two years to train.”
“Yes, your majesty. I wish to not stay complacent.”
It was absurdly comical to Navarro. A nine year-old was asking for two years to skip school and have independent training.
“Let me understand this correctly. You have one request from myself, the Emperor, and ruler of this land, and you ask for two years away from school?”
There was a hint of sarcasm in Navarro’s voice.
It was an easy request, almost too easy.
“….Yes, your majesty.”
Roy felt bewildered at the sudden denial.
‘What the hell? It should be easy though….?’
“Ask for something else as well. I can easily grant that request, but it is too pitiful alone. I’ll give you one more request.”
Navarro smiled and then Roy felt like he finally understood.
His request would be complete.
Roy gathered his thoughts and recalled the automata he had recently gained from the Ruins of the Fairies as well as several other things, like the Magic Towers and their knowledge stored within their libraries.
Which request would he give Navarro?
Roy slowly opened his mouth.
Chapter 33 – Fin