Last night had started with some reluctance. When they have had their sumptuous dinner, Aizen picked her up and led her to the room. She was scared about his intentions, but to her relief, he had only held her in his embrace as they lay together on the bed. He wouldn’t let go of her, and she didn’t struggle in fear that her struggle would lead him to do more than just to hold her in his embrace. He was dangerous.
She tried her best to not fall for the warmth and protection she felt in his embrace. But she lost and fell peacefully asleep in his embrace.
Lysaria was mortified to see how she had fallen asleep in his embrace. She didn’t know what kind of advantages he had taken of her while she slept. And the smug grin plastered on his face made her mind run wild.
What made her feel ashamed was the fact that she had neglected his security. Just the thought of something happening to him scared her. He was her responsibility. How could she have faced her sisters if anything had happened to him?
She stayed quiet the entire morning and let him hug and tease her all he wanted to. She didn’t curse or argue with him. If anything had happened to them when she was asleep, she would have never been able to face herself. He was, after all, her husband.
They had their breakfast in their suite, and then Aizen decided to explore the town.
The Whistling Star got its name after the whistling sound the wind produced as it ran through the woods. The entire Star was covered in trees that were thousands of meters high. Their shade covered the sky. The rays of the sun feebly sneaked their way past this shade and provided a dazzling illumination. This place was beautiful. It was an abode where every nature-loving race would dream to live inside.
There were a total of twelve cities on this Star and Morio was its capital city. All the five Royal courts were in Morio. However, this was not where these five clans resided. Their abodes were the secret places on this Star. No other race knew of their locations.
It was the first time here for both of them, and they heartily explored this place. The cities were built where the trees were less in concentration.
The trees surrounded the entire City of Morio, giving it a dangerous yet a serene feeling. The buildings here were different from any they had seen before. The exterior of these buildings was mostly wooden, and they blended with the atmosphere in the town perfectly.
This city was also a place for tourist attraction and so there were many luxurious Inns here. The restaurants were extravagant and lured the people in by the savory aroma of the food they served. There were Auction Houses owned by Black Water, Jade Temple, and the Elven Clans. There was also one that was owned by the Moonlight Inn. Other than Auction Houses there were Guilds of various Organizations.
The most alluring thing in the City was the Elven shops that sold their specialties. These elven shops had clothes that were woven and designed by their clan’s famous craftsmen. Other than that many shops sold eggs of Beasts, and some shops that provided services that included renting of chariots, and Taming of Horses and other domesticated beasts. The weapon shops were also the specialty of the Elven race. They took orders on bows, daggers, and light swords which were the Elven race’s preferred choice of arms.
Lysaria seemed quite intrigued by the atmosphere in the city. They had first taken a horse carriage provided by the Inn to look around the city. Then they asked the Coachman to return to the Inn and traveled on foot. She overlooked the fact that Aizen held her hand all the time and enjoyed her time here. She visited quite a lot of clothing shops before choosing a few dresses for herself and her sisters.
To his surprise, she had chosen one for him as well. She still had her noble and valiant aura on her, but she felt more like a girl when her eyes lingered on the jewelry and clothes. She seldom asked for his opinion on what she chose to buy, and he let her buy whatever she wanted. When they were done with the shopping, he took her to a Jewelry Shop.
She was quite surprised when she found him scanning through the items presented in the shop. His sight finally settled on something and when she followed his gaze, she gasped in awe. This was a necklace made of pearls which were undoubtedly the condensed Tears of Mermaid. These pearls were refined with different gems to provide them with translucent colors. There was a tear-shaped pearl that made the pendant and was of a similar translucent color.
She wanted it. Every woman would want it, but she could see that it was the only piece present in the shop. There possibly wasn’t another one in the entire city. She thought of her sisters and curbed her desire for it. Besides, she had already made him spend quite a handsome amount on the shopping and this necklace was not cheap. Although they didn’t lack money and the treasury of the star Palace held enormous wealth, she just couldn’t bear spending it on herself and such luxuries.
However, Aizen had already decided to buy it for her. He did not wait for her to argue and personally put it on her neck. He was quite satisfied with how perfect it looked on her. He smiled in satisfaction and paid for it in half a dozen Black gems without batting an eye.
Lysaria did not express it, but her heart was sweet. She was happy. He could see it in her shy eyes. They returned to the Inn after a sumptuous and delightful lunch at a luxurious restaurant.
He took off his Mask and looked at the time on the clock. He pulled her in his embrace and sat her on his lap as he fell back on the couch. He inhaled her aroma and closed his eyes as he buried his face in her neck. She struggled but soon gave in and let him hold her.
“We have two hours before the gathering commences.” He said in a low voice. “Get some rest and be prepared.”
“What gathering?” She asked curiously.
“Some people will gather in the Auction Hall of the Moonlight Inn to confirm the authenticity of the Dagger. Only some influential forces know of the news about this dagger, and they will probably arrive.”
He felt her tense up and squeezed her in his embrace. “Don’t worry, everyone is allowed to hide their identities, and the seller will probably not reveal himself as well. Not until a deal has been reached with the buyer.”
She nodded and then asked. “How are we going to acquire this Dagger if it is real? With all those influences there, it will not be easy to get our hands on it.”
“It is real. Only a fool would play with fire by gathering so many forces before him and play a prank on them.” He said. “And as far as getting our hands on it is concerned, we will wait and see. I don’t think the seller plans on selling it for money. He probably needs something in return, that is why he hasn’t just secretly sold it off to the wealthiest influence but spread the news to different influences.”
“It could be a trap as well.” She was worried and it was apparent in her voice.
Aizen kissed on her head and smiled at her concern. “Don’t worry. It is not a trap. The broker that is organizing the deal is trustworthy. At least she doesn’t have any ill intentions towards me.”
Lysaria frowned when she heard him say this, but she did not ask any questions. She didn’t like the idea of him trusting a woman so much who wasn’t a part of his family.
“All right now, let’s take a nap.” He picked her up in a princess carry and took her to the bed. Her struggles proved futile again as he held her to sleep. This time, however, she didn’t let herself drift off to deep sleep.
The room was quite spacious, and there were dozens of people already present when they arrived. Each person was asked to only bring along one companion with them if they wanted to. So people who had shadows had brought them along.
Just like the rest of the people they were also cloaked and had masks on. These masks served at hiding the facial features perfectly even though they only covered half of your face. The cloaks also served as a medium to hide the identity as well as hide one’s Aura that could help determine a person’s age and strength.
They took their designated seats which were on a separate wing than the rest. People only looked at them for a moment before nodding and taking back their eyes. This greeting was common and meant to convey the message that the person held no hostility to the other person. Aizen nodded back to the crowd and then looked at the platform where a man stood with his head lowered.
This person was the one who had gathered them all here and was the owner of the Dagger. The broker had already informed everyone that she wouldn’t be attending the event. She would, however, still be monitoring it. This was just like her. She seldom appeared before people and never talked much, so no one minded or suspected anything off with this event.
The man on the platform kept his head down as people kept arriving. He didn’t lift his head for once to greet anyone. Some people in the room were quite displeased by his attitude towards them, while some were curious about who this daring person was.
The door of the meeting room closed as the time to assemble was over.
There was silence in the room that awaited the cloaked person to address the crowd and show the dagger to them. They didn’t have to wait long before the man on the platform said some words.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, I welcome you all here today. I will not say any useless words, but I would like to say something before we get started with the business.” The voice was masked as well, but it was the voice of a man. “Those who do not have intentions to fight for this dagger should just leave now. Those who choose to stay will in future have to make a vow of not revealing the contents of this meeting to the people not present here today.”
Everyone furrowed their burrows as the words of the man held ambiguity, he had stressed the word “fight”. Some people were also bothered by the fact that they would have to make a vow but in the end, no one left. It was quite common to make a vow when attending such secret meetings.
The man nodded as he looked around and saw no one backing off. “Well then, let’s just get started, shall we?” He pulled out a sheathed dagger from inside his cloak.
The hilt was quite attractive. It made people gasp in awe. This was quite a large dagger with about a foot long blade that was only a few inches longer than its hilt. The most eye-catching things were the pairs of Black and White crescents that were carved all over the hilt.
The blade hovered in the air and everyone wanted to go over and hold it in their hands.
“Only one person of each faction is allowed to come over and check the authenticity of the Primordial Metal. You are welcome to try to destroy the blade if you can.” The man chuckled as he ended his words.
Only a fool would try to destroy this blade. No one below the True-Origin strength could harm this metal. And to use the full strength to test this dagger would possibly reveal the person’s identity.
A person from the front row walked to the platform and grabbed the blade in his hands. He observed the hilt for a while before pulling the blade out from its sheath. The blade was double-edged, and it was just like a mini sword except that it had a wicked pointed end. It looked sturdy as well as sharp. There were drawings of crescents, both of a darker and lighter shade, all over the blade. The man held the blade for a while in his hand seemingly not willing to part with it.
“State your price. I want this Dagger.” He asked the owner.
“Just as would everyone else in this room.” The man said and continued respectfully. “Please allow the rest of the gathering to check this blade or it would be rude to them. We will come at the price when everyone is satisfied with what they are gathered here for.”
The person seemingly realized his rudeness and apologetically nodded to everyone present before parting with the blade and leaving the platform.
One by one people went over to check the blade and returned with the determination to buy it even if they have to part with their lifetime of fortunes.
Some people didn’t go over as they had recognized the Metal and the allure it held for the people. Aizen too was satisfied with what was presented on the platform. Any weapon of Primordial Metal would be sought after no matter how shabby it looked, but this blade was exquisite with a touch of both wickedness and Beauty in it. Just like everyone else he too wanted to have this blade.
“This man is suspicious,” Lysaria whispered in his ear.
He understood what she meant. No one in all his sanity would ever think of selling such a treasure. And this only meant that this person was not after the riches but wanted something from the people present in this room that not everyone might agree to pay. He nodded to her in confirmation and turned his focus from the blade to the man.
Soon everyone settled down with no doubt about the authenticity of the Metal. They ardently looked forward to the man to name his price.
“I hope everyone present here is satisfied with this treasure.” The man spoke solemnly and continued. “I request everyone present here to make a Vow to not reveal any details of what you are about to hear afterward. Those who are not willing to make the Vow should leave right now or this gathering is adjourned.”
The seriousness in his voice made everyone cautious. The silence loomed before few people stood and left the room quietly. These were the people who were not fools but smart. They could see that something was off, and even if they were willing to go all out with their fortunes, they might not necessarily be able to win the blade over the other people gathered here. No one disdained the people that left. The remaining people became even more cautious and dignified. These were the people who were truly willing to take risks.
Aizen was the first to stand up along with Lysaria to make the vow. He pulled an ordinary blade out of his ring and slashed his thumb, which soon dripped blood. He dropped a few drops on Lysaria’s hand and spoke; “We vow to not reveal what we are about to hear, to anyone who’s not a witness to what you are about to say.”
The man on the platform nodded towards them and they both sat back in their seats. Lysaria pulled his hand and dressed the cut on the thumb that had already stopped bleeding. Aizen found her actions cute but this was not the place or time to tease her.
Everyone followed suit and made their vows by speaking the same words he spoke. Soon the silence again loomed in the hall.
“You can all call me Yuren. The blade here is something that was passed down to me by my father, and to him by my grandfather. This could be called a family heirloom.” He sighed and continued. “I am putting this blade up for you because the thing I want cannot be achieved on my own.”
“I want Mervin Ianserk and his wife Selena Ianserk dead. Whoever brings me their heads gets this Dagger.”
His words rang in the minds of everyone and most braved a sweat just as soon as they heard him. Mervin Ianserk was the current head of the Royal Clan of Ianserk and Selena was his queen. To kill them meant to enrage the Ianserk Clan as well as the rest of the Elven Race.
Lysaria looked at Aizen in shock that couldn’t be hidden by the mask.
Soon the shock in the room subsided and some hostile eyes looked at the man on the platform. This was all the greed for the dagger. They would rather brave the danger of killing this man and stealing it than to infuriate the entire Elven Race. But of course, they couldn’t start with their plans on the territory of that Lady or else they wouldn’t see tomorrow’s sun.
Yuren could see the hostility in their eyes and just chuckled. He emanated his menacing Aura which suffocated people. He was a man who had lived for thousands of years and was almost at the peak of False Origin strength. This curbed the hostilities of many and then the words he spoke next poured cold water on all their plans.
“This dagger will stay with the Lady of this House. Anyone who completes the Job may reach her and get this reward.”
“To complete this Job you have a month. Good Luck to those who will brave the risk. Farewell!”
And just like that, the man disappeared from the Platform. He was adept at teleportation.
The people in the room stayed there for a moment as they digested everything they learned here today.
Some had already given up the hopes to attain this dagger and the rest decided to consider the consequences some more before reaching a decision.
Aizen stood up and walked out of the room with Lysaria, but just as he was about to reach the Space Wall of his floor, a voice whispered in their ears.
“This princess has seen Lord Aizen and Lady Lysaria.”
Even without turning around, they had already recognized the voice. It was the princess of Zion.
Aizen turned around and saw two people hidden in cloaks. He looked at the person on the left for a while before nodding to her, and then he walked in the wall with Lysaria.
Keira got the confirmation and followed them in the wall with her Shadow.
♛ Author’s Note:
Buckle up for the TWS Arc. It won’t be a long ride, but it will be a fun ride.
The new Poll for the Story of the Month is up on my Patreon. It will be deciding which story I will be focusing on this month, let’s see what happens. The result comes out on Sunday.
To know the result, you can join my discord server. The link is on the ToC page. See you there!