Chapter 4 : Father
This chapter was brought to you by AnmesicCat, Kei, and StellarAshes.
“Child, why must you resist me?” The Dragon Emperor looked deeply at Liola, saying irresistible words. “You are my child, the most talented child. Once I conquer the world, the next Dragon Emperor is you, and you will become the Emperor of the world.”
He did not expect the Dragon Emperor to say something like it. Still, Liola replied indifferently, “I don’t want to be Emperor.”
Hearing this answer, instead of being angry, the Dragon Emperor faintly smiled, “That’s right, each and every one of my children is very humble.”
“Really?” Full of suspicions, Kaiser who is used to retorting raised his tone, “Latter or whatever wasn’t like that.”
As if he heard something unforgivable, the Dragon Emperor’s expression darkened, and his voice became frighteningly ice-cold. “He is not my child.”
“Eh?” Kaiser’s face became puzzled. “If he’s not your child then whose is he? Don’t tell me your wife cheated…” Kaiser didn’t even finish his last word. As soon as the Dragon Emperor’s eyes turned cold, a beam of purple light shot out from his finger and flew towards Kaiser.
Seeing the light, Kaiser snorted and raised his hand, firing a 3 times-compressed Divine Fireball to blow the light beam away.
The Dragon Emperor was, at first, surprised to see Kaiser easily knocking away the light beam, then full of interest, he sized up Kaiser and Daylight. The improvement in these two would so much truly impress anyone.
“What are you so angry for, your wife’s cheating is none of my goddamn business.” Kaiser said this unhappily, but suddenly he began to smile. “No wonder you want to kill Latte, turns out to be not your son.”
The Dragon Emperor’s face fell a little, but he didn’t attack Kaiser again, and he didn’t pay any attention to him. He turned to Liola and his tone remained warm, “Child, come with me. Father doesn’t care about the prophecy anymore, you are my best child, as long as you succeed me, even if you killed me, it wouldn’t matter.”
Hearing this, Liola suddenly raised his head, and attempted to find traces of lying on the Dragon Emperor’s face. However, seeing those pair of purple yet clear eyes, it was hard to make out any trace of lies. Liola somewhat half-believed, but if the Dragon Emperor was speaking the truth, then maybe following him back was a good chance to assassinate him. Liola thought about this hesitantly.
“Liola?” Kaiser saw Liola wasn’t saying anything, and thought maybe he was really considering leaving with the Dragon Emperor, so he couldn’t help but ask with a dim tone.
Liola slowly turned back and glanced at Kaiser, thinking if he should leave with the Dragon Emperor, since under the current situation, it would be difficult for 3 people to escape. But if he leaves with the Dragon Emperor willingly, then the Dragon Emperor will probably promise to free Daylight and Kaiser. As for Liola’s own safety, he is not worried, not because he’s bragging, but if he is by himself, Liola dare say no one can stop him from escaping.
“If I go with you, can you guarantee to let both of them go?” Liola looked at the Dragon Emperor.
The Dragon Emperor raised his eyebrow, “Of course, you thought I mind these two? Child, they have improved, but it’s still too early for them to be a threat to me.”
Hearing Liola’s answer, Kaiser and Daylight cried out startlingly, “Liola!”
“Let them go first.” Liola calmly said, not understanding his two companion’s worried look.
The Dragon Emperor nodded gracefully, his long slender hand indicating permission.
Daylight and Kaiser didn’t move from their spot, the determined look on both faces said they will absolutely not leave. Liola can only tell them via Baolilong talking to Flames, and Flames telling Daylight of his plan. At the same time, he promised he will definitely escape.
Hearing the message from Flames, Daylight hesitated. Under normal circumstances, Daylight will never abandon his companion to escape, but considering if he and Kaiser stayed behind, they might become Liola’s burden.
“Can you promise you can definitely escape?” Daylight let Flames convey.
“I promise.” Liola also respond this way.
Daylight hesitated a bit and let out a sigh. He went and grab Kaiser with the intention to leave, but as soon as he pulled Kaiser, the magic spell dispersed and Miluo can finally move. He roared loudly towards the sky, blood-red eyes glaring at Kaiser. Yet as a purple light from the Dragon Emperor shot at Miluo’s forehead, Miluo became tame as a domesticated horse, quietly lying down.
Kaiser used his strength to break away from Daylight’s grasp and yelled towards Liola. “Don’t go with him, I don’t care about whatever ideas you have, do you think the Dragon Emperor hasn’t thought of them?”
Liola heard this and he turned and looked suspiciously at the Dragon Emperor, who paid no attention but instead calmly said, “It seems your companions have a deep misunderstanding towards me. Child, I have said I don’t mind the prophecy and came only take you back. Even if you don’t believe father’s words, do you also not believe the promise of an Emperor?”
Liola became quiet for a while, then said to Kaiser, “You guys leave.”
Kaiser practically exploded with rage, other than being angry at Liola, in truth he is angrier at himself. Given he had indeed became stronger, yet was there wasn’t anything that can be done except to turn tail and run?
“Let’s go, Kaiser.” Daylight once again pulled Kaiser and simply dragged him regardless of the latter’s utmost struggling,
“Liola, you have to come back.” Daylight passed the message through Flames but at the same time firmly looked at Liola. “If you don’t come back, you will find four people who will risk everything to go save you.”
Hearing this, Liola’s body shook strongly, and he carefully nodded.
Receiving Liola’s promise, Daylight finally able to let go of some of his worries, bringing Kaiser along with him, and flew far away. But Kaiser was still anxious and struggled fiercely to throw off Daylight until Daylight shouted, “Kaiser! What are you thinking about? Us staying would do nothing but obstruct Liola’s escape.”
Hearing this, Kaiser was like a balloon losing its air. In a short while, he sat on Flame’s back and looked at the distant Liola’s figure becoming smaller and smaller. When he finally became out of sight, he clenched his fist. “I know, I know leaving was the best option, since staying behind would only hinder Liola…”
“But Daylight, I have an uneasy feeling.” Kaiser’s voice echoed of worry.
“Did you believe the Dragon Emperor still wants to kill Liola?” Daylight asked.
“No.” Kaiser immediately denied this notion, paused for a long time only then continued, “I feel the Dragon Emperor is telling the truth.”
Daylight was baffled. “If the Dragon Emperor spoke the truth, then isn’t it even better? He won’t kill Liola.”
‘Won’t kill Liola…?’ Kaiser felt restless from these words. Why did the Dragon Emperor change his mind? Was he really not worried Liola would kill him? If he really isn’t worried… then what is it? From what basis does he have such certainty?
The multitude of ideas swam in Kaiser’s mind, but no matter what he came up with, he was unable to guess the Dragon Emperor’s thoughts. Kaiser only has an intuition the Dragon Emperor’s ideas are extremely terrifying, and moreover the consequences are what they will not be happy to see.
Yet the crucial point among these is something that Kaiser can never imagine, because Liola is an expert at treating all important and unimportant things as unimportant as well as forgetting them. Indeed he forgot to tell Kaiser about the rumors of the Dragon Emperor’s ambitions. If the Kaiser at this time knew of his ambitions, even if he used his knees to think, he would figure out the reason why the Dragon Emperor took Liola away.
Daylight saw Kaiser’s serious expression, and he comforted him, “Believe in Liola, he’s not the same as before, he won’t easily give up life and will surely do his best to escape.”
“Only…” Daylight sighed, “when can we stop running away?”
Kaiser’s eyes became tense. “We won’t always run away. Not long in the future, surely, we’ll stop.”
The two flew until they could almost see Freesia, and they heard someone calling them from behind. Daylight had also sensed someone was quickly closing in on them, but he didn’t dare to ask Flames stop because he feared they were pursued by people sent by the Dragon Emperor.
As he was turning his head to see who it was, Kaiser had already patted Daylight as he yelled, “Stop, stop, it’s Gladiolus.”
Daylight made an emergency U-turn and Gladiolus caught up to them. Gladiolus looked at the two, and frowned as he asked, “Where’s the other person?”
“Dragon Emperor is holding him.” Kaiser answered unhappily. Without waiting Gladiolus to explain, he began to blame him, “Where the hell did you and Mizerui go? I won’t believe you didn’t notice the Dragon Emperor was here. Why didn’t you come save us?”
Gladiolus remained silent for a while, then said, “Unless we have the power to defeat Dragon Emperor, we cannot afford to expose Mizerui’s identity. I am also using all of the Dark Street’s resources to help Qiusi, so I can’t afford being captured.”
Due to Liola only being released by Gle short while ago, then getting captured by Dragon Emperor, Kaiser was in a terrible mood. Even though he knew Gladiolus and Mizerui were both here with the danger of being caught, and they’re doing all that they could so he couldn’t really ask for more… Nevertheless, he was still angry.
Unable to bear it, Kaiser ridiculed, “Hmph! They were only a few people, 2 people plus a dragon and a horse. But we are 5 people plus two dragons plus a bird! Given this they still dare not fight, hmph! Cowards!”
“Kaiser!” Daylight wrinkled his eyebrows, reprimanding lightly that he should not say these kinds of hurtful words.
“Cowards? Perhaps so.” Gladiolus said calmly. “When one has a lot of responsibilities, their life is not only their own and their courage becomes smaller and smaller.”
Hearing Gladiolus’ response, no matter how thick-skinned Kaiser was, he can’t help but be a little embarrassed, his expression immediately became uncomfortable. Even Daylight quickly apologized to Gladiolus. “I’m really sorry, Gladiolus, Kaiser is only too worried about Liola and he didn’t mean it.”
Gladiolus had not minded it, only nodding and instead warned with good intention. “You must not put the Dragon Emperor as a common X-class individual. His power is already not something an ordinary person can imagine. Probably… only the Devil King Gle has the means to fight him alone.”
“You should stop worrying for Liola, Mizerui will think of a solution.”
Seeing that Gladiolus was not angry and kindly warning them instead, Kaiser’s tensed face eased up, and he nodded no longer grumbling.
When he heard Mizerui was thinking of a way, Daylight’s mood lightened up, and he asked, “Then, where do we need to go now?”
“We can no longer go to Freesia. A year ago, Miluo gathered the sub-Dragons from the Yaron Plains, and this was the first city attacked. Ever since then, practically everyone in the city had either died or ran for their lives.”
Daylight looked at Freesia from afar. At first he didn’t notice it, but after hearing Gladiolus’ words, Daylight noticed, the walls of Freesia were indeed covered with dark, dried blood, and the walls were broken through in many places. Everything indicated how tragic the battle must have been a year ago.
“Mizerui wants me to bring you to the Commerce Alliance.” Gladiolus said. “You are familiar with the Red Commander’s daughter. They will probably offer shelter to you.”
Daylight widened his eyes. “Why not Aklan Republic? Isn’t there a war going on? We will stay behind to help out.”
“I don’t know, but Mizerui wants me to bring you to the Commerce Alliance.” Gladiolus wrinkled his eyebrows and added, “And I plan to do just that.”
“What about Meinan? Where is he?” Kaiser calmly asked. He believed Mizerui has his own considerations in letting them stay at the Commerce Alliance, so Kaiser didn’t persist in wanting to stay at Aklan. As far as the war is concerned, whether he and Daylight was there or not there was no big difference.
“Also in Commerce Alliance.” Gladiolus answered without the slightest hesitation, at the same time secretly admiring Mizerui. Just now when Mizerui decided to bring these two to the Commerce Alliance, he already foreseen and told him the Prime Minister’s son was already sent to the Commerce Alliance. He was still thinking why Mizerui would suddenly tell him that information, and now he finally understood. If he couldn’t answer, he’s afraid these two people would not go.
“Meinan is also at the Commerce Alliance, huh.” Even though Kaiser was relieved Meinan didn’t participate in the battlefield, but it was slightly worrying that Qiusi, as the Prime Minister of Aklan, would send his own son to the Commerce Alliance. Doesn’t it represent Qiusi’s lack of confidence to win the war?
Unable to understand the situation, pile after pile of questions stirred confusingly in Kaiser’s head until he finally couldn’t take it and yelled. “Argh! I don’t care anymore, let’s go find Purity and Meinan first.”
Daylight still wanted to say he will stay behind alone, but was cut off by Kaiser. “Shut up! The war won’t change whether or not you’re there. First, let’s look for Meinan and Purity, moreover, if Liola doesn’t come back, we have to think of a way to save him.”
The thought of Liola still being in the hands of the Emperor was enough to let Daylight reflect and not persist in going to Aklan.
Seeing that they reached an agreement, Gladiolus immediately led them to set out. He wanted to complete this mission as soon as possible so he could return to the place he belongs to. He was worried about the Dark Street, which was the result of his life’s work, and… the girl who was always waiting by the window.
“Child, do you think I am wrong?”
Alone at the Emperor’s side, Liola planned to stay a little longer to give Kaiser and Daylight more time to escape further, further reducing the odds of being caught by the Dragon Emperor. Right when he was clueless of what excuse he can use to stay here, the Dragon Emperor opened his mouth. Liola fixed his state of mind; conversations are the best for delaying time. His eyes purposely revealed a look of doubt towards Dragon Emperor.
The Dragon Emperor smiled a little and the expression on his face softened. His eyes, which used to be completely imposing, became clear and relaxed. He flew near Baolilong, slowly descended on Baolilong’s back. Liola alertly watched the Dragon Emperor, even though he didn’t know what plan he was mixing up, still, Liola truly dislike him going too close. It lessens the reaction time he has due to the distance.
However, the Dragon Emperor walked naturally until he was in front of Liola. The latter’s guard was on extreme alert, waiting only for any movements of the Dragon Emperor and he will immediately strike back without fail.
It appears as if the Dragon Emperor sensed Liola’s tenseness, he only smiled while gently saying, “Don’t be so nervous, child, I only want to see your face more closely.”
With that said, the Dragon Emperor raised his right hand, and Liola automatically saw him as a potential attacker, and his right hand quickly took out Broken Silver while raising it to his chest and looking dangerously at the Dragon Emperor.
Regarding Liola’s protective action, the Dragon Emperor a little bit shocked and a dull sadness appeared through the smile on his face. His right hand was still raised, but Liola didn’t detect any energy. Confused about the Dragon Emperor’s intention, he alarmingly and suspiciously watched the pair of hands slowly nearing his head.
When the Dragon Emperor’s hand was only a few inches away, Liola struck the Dragon Emperor’s hand away due to his reflexive nature to counterattack. This attack landed squarely on the Dragon Emperor’s hand, and Liola could not feel him using any aura to protect his own hand. The soft sounds of bone cracking clearly indicated to Liola that the Dragon Emperor’s bones on his hands were at least cracked.
The Dragon Emperor only grunted and Lancelot, who saw what happened, revealed a furious look. Just when he was about to rush forward, the Dragon Emperor raised his left hand to stop his movement.
Lancelot stepped back, only politely said. “Your Majesty, please at least let me treat your injury.”
The Dragon Emperor shook his head, “Later. With an injury, perhaps my child will accept me more easily.”
Seeing Dragon Emperor’s hand hanging by his body and clearly unable to move, Liola no longer had any ideas of what he wanted to do. The Dragon Emperor didn’t seem to want to give up, and he raised his unharmed left arm to slowly approach Liola.
Liola looked back skeptically, trying to find any clue in the Dragon Emperor’s expression. However, he found no malice on the face, but instead he was greeted with a warm smile as well as warm and perhaps even a bit silly eyes.
Liola unconsciously thought of the excessive kind Prince Coffee from Bairui’s mouth.
At this moment, the Dragon Emperor’s hand already made contact with Liola’s black hair. Liola wanted to break away but seeing the Dragon Emperor couldn’t even move his right hand, at one moment’s hesitation, the Dragon Emperor was already touching his head. As Liola’s body immediately stiffened, the Dragon Emperor indulgently pampered his hair.
Liola was entirely confused by the Dragon Emperor’s obvious cheerful expression. This action was not at all foreign to Liola, Gle had frequently in this way touch Yasha’s head while insisting on leaving her red hair in a terrible mess. After she repeatedly protested, Gle would laugh heartily and move his hand away.
Even Liola himself had also frequently massaged Baolilong’s head in this way. Baolilong on the other hand, does not protest. The little dragon simply does not mind whether his hair was messy or not. He is always very happy whenever Liola stroke his head.
But no one had ever massaged Liola’s head like this, and no one had ever used such a caring and happy expression to look at him.
A strange kind of feeling came from the bottom of his heart, Liola was a little embarrassed and wiped the Dragon Emperor’s hand away, even protesting, “I am not a little child.” Only when he said it, even Liola was surprised at himself. These types of words were not like his own.
Just like every parent who had their child protesting had he realize his child was already this grown up. The Dragon Emperor had a fleeting moment of disappointment following which he started smiling. “It’s father’s mistake. You’re already this big, yet I still think of you as a child.”
Looking at the Dragon Emperor’s smiling expression, Liola suddenly found himself sinking into a strange circumstance. He had always classified the Dragon Emperor as an enemy. Even when he found out the Dragon Emperor was his father, he treated it only as a simple blood relation; after all, the Dragon Emperor was not the one who raised him. But now, the reality finally sank in to him: the Dragon Emperor was his father.
“Can you…” Even though the Dragon Emperor was still smiling, but his expression was somewhat awkward. At the same time saying half a sentence then breaking off words again, it seems the words were hard to leave his mouth.
Liola looked at him suspiciously.
The Dragon Emperor coughed, a little silliness in his smile, “Child, can you call me once?”
Although not knowing what he wants to do but this request was not difficult, Liola bluntly replied. “Dragon Emperor.”
Immediately hearing this, the Dragon Emperor stared distractedly, a clear look of disappointment showed on his face.
Seeing the Dragon Emperor’s disappointed look, Liola doesn’t know what he did wrong, but based on his past experience in which he let Gle down, a bunch of beatings or messy and wild experiences followed. As a result, Liola uncontrollably tensed up, his originally relaxed hand once again held tightly to Broken Silver.
Disappointed for a moment, the Dragon Emperor quickly cheered up and a gentle smile returned to his face. “Never mind, father’s demand was too much to start with by wanting you call me father or dad.”
Liola was shocked to the point where his mouth couldn’t help but open slightly. He never thought the Dragon Emperor had this meaning.
“Let’s go, child.” The Dragon Emperor naturally said.
“Where to?” Liola reflexively asked.
The Dragon Emperor revealed a sad expression, faintly saying, “Today is your birthday, also… the anniversary of your mother’s death. You have never visited your mother’s grave, so now, we should let her see you, and because you are the only boy she had.”
‘Today is my birthday?’ How would Liola know this? The Dragon Emperor’s strange and intimate actions, his own birthday, his mother’s death anniversary… The various things were enough to let confuse Liola, so he didn’t know what to do. The lonely Assassin suddenly finds out he does have a father and a mother.
“That’s right, you’ve met your third brother Cappuccino but still haven’t seen your eldest brother Mocha right?” The Dragon Emperor smiled lightly. “Your eldest brother’s personality is a little odd, don’t let him scare you.”
Hearing these words, Liola became even more surprised. He almost forgot he has elder brothers and an elder sister before him. Not to mention his elder sister is… Liola didn’t refrain from asking. “How’s Lanski?”
Hearing this, the Dragon Emperor sighed lightly. “That child has been depressed recently, father is worried. Right, perhaps you can comfort that child. While we talked all this time, father still doesn’t know which of you is older?”
Liola answered rigidly, “I’m the younger brother…” Nevertheless, Anise had made him age 5 years, so he looked older than Lanski.
“So that’s how it is, Lan will definitely be very happy to have a younger brother.”
As the Dragon Emperor smiled, he took up Liola’s hand. It was natural to the point where Liola forgot to be cautious. The Dragon Emperor’s voice, which was full of warm and gentleness, resounded by Liola’s ear.
“Let’s go home, child.”