“To your left!”
A shade of purple lightning vanished inside the forest of dark woods where the voice had directed.
An angry cry of a beast rose, and the loud explosion of lightning elements dazzled the dark night. The other beasts in the forest ran for their lives as the forest was now on fire and the menacing aura of the two beings was just too terrifying.
Just two fading images were fighting against each other. The black and golden shade belonged to a beast, not too big, and it looked, really, mad at its enemy.
The other shade was too fast to figure out what it was. And its speed was what made this beast mad. It couldn’t catch the purple shade with its darkness element, and its lightning element couldn’t match up to the speed of its enemy.
The beast once again tried to vanish from the eyes of its enemy as it utilized its darkness element and its ability to go invisible. That’s how it had managed to run away twice before. However, its enemy was prepared this time. It was not going to be fooled again.
A cage of lightning descended where the beast had just vanished, and the painful cries echoed in the forest together with the ripping of wind.
The purple shade stopped, and a figure of a girl wearing the armor of lighting appeared from it. Her long lustrous black hair fluttered in the wind, and her shiny purple eyes were of the same color as her lightning element.
The beast saw her walk towards it and the sight of a sinister dagger in her hand scared it. The beast was intelligent, and it knew well that the enemy didn’t wish to take its life or it would have already died. Though it should have come out victorious since their strength was at the same level and these woods were its home, the beast had failed and was powerless.
It glared in the dark woods where the enemy’s partner was. They had both been chasing it since the morning, and every time it managed to get away, that girl with golden hair somehow found where it was even when it had its ability on.
In its anger, it debated if it should run to that girl and rip her to shreds, but those purple eyes locked on it and its heart sank. It stopped struggling in the cage of lightning and apprehensively looked at its enemy.
“It’s good that you finally understand.” The girl smiled palely and the beast subconsciously took a step back. It had seen ferocious beasts, even those stronger than him, but it had never been so scared in life before.
“What do you want?” It asked the enemy in its feminine voice that couldn’t hide its fear.
“And I thought you would never talk, Nightmare Lynx.”
The girl’s smile ceased and then she pricked her hand with the dagger. Two drops of blood were on the way to hit the ground before they stopped in the air and floated towards the beast.
“If you want to live then you have to become my pet.” The girl said and her eyes glowed in the purple light.
The bells of crisis rang in the beast’s mind as it felt its senses fade. But then the glow in the girl’s eyes vanished and left the beast trembling in fear. The threat had been delivered. Its enemy possessed the ability of hypnosis and could rewrite its consciousness to make it her puppet.
The lynx wasted no time and hurriedly accepted those two drops of blood. Being a slave and keeping its consciousness was still better than becoming a puppet. The spell of slave bond evoked and its heart was sealed in a curse.
“Good girl.” The girl nodded appreciatively and took back her armor of lightning and the cage around the beast.
“I only chose it because you are too strong and still so young. With you, I can get more battle experience and become stronger.” The lynx tried to excuse out its decision and keep its pride.
“Huh… you only did so because you feared for your life.” The girl scoffed and then walked towards it. She patted the beast’s head that almost reached to her bosom, and smiled. “I will call you Nyxi from now on.”
“My name is not Nyxi. It’s Neva.” The beast said in displeasure.
“Shut up, Nyxi.” The girl smiled palely. “Your name is what your master calls you with. Understand?”
The seriousness in her voice sent chills throughout its body.
“Y-yes, I understand.”
“Stop scaring the poor beast, Keira.” A figure walked out from the darkness of the woods and her bright blue eyes were shining even in the darkness of the night.
“Well, it kept running from me the entire day. I want to break its leg to teach it some manners.” Keira shook her head and looked towards its front legs.
Nyxi was frightened and it took a few steps back.
“M-master, have mercy. I don’t want a broken leg.” It begged.
“Oh, what should I break then?”
“N-nothing! I am sorry master… Please.”
“You are not behaving like a Nightmare Lynx.” The girl with the golden hair laughed at its words and commented.
Her words pierced the heart of the lynx and it lowered its head dispiritedly. It was the strongest beast in this forest and today its pride had been stomped and shattered. Even its fearful Invisibility Cloak that whispered fear in the hearts of everyone had been nothing more than a joke before these two.
“Aww… Don’t worry. Your master is my master too. I know how scary she is.” The girl with the golden hair stroked its head. “I am Irina.”
“Nev… Nyxi” The beast almost had a scare and corrected her reply.
Keira took out a black ring from her Blood-ring and wore it on her other hand.
“You will be staying inside it from now on. Come.”
A small portal opened and the Lynx hesitated for a bit. How big could the abode inside that ring possibly be? Even if it was big, it was still a cage. However, what choice did it have on this matter? It walked right in that portal and entered the ring.
“You sure care about your pet a lot.” Irina laughed. “You have never kept one before and now you even gave her the best Abode-ring you have.”
“It’s a Nightmare Lynx, Irina. They are rare and beautiful creatures. And I can tell you that it’s very strong and smart.” Keira said and looked towards the raging fire that was eating the forest.
“Should we put it out? There are too many baby beasts in the forest.” Irina asked worriedly.
“No need. There’s no lack of water beasts in this forest. After we leave, they will gather up to put off this fire.”
Irina was still worried but nodded her head.
“Where are we heading now?”
“We will go back to the Inn and stay the night there. And leave for our next destination tomorrow.” Keira said and took out a Black Crystal. She channeled the mana she had stored inside it to the bracelet that was a space artifact and opened a portal.
“Let’s go.” She said and entered the portal.
Irina followed her but the expression she wore on the face was complicated. And it only got heavy when she saw Keira hugging the pillow and lying on the bed, again.
The star they were on was not a big star. It was ruled by a Monster clan belonging to the Cat race. The city they were in was Kaval. And the room they were in right now was occupied by some other guests just a few days ago.
She could feel what was going on in her Master’s heart and she was scared. It had all started when she had gone to the Star Palace to attend the coronation ceremony. Irina had gone with her but had stayed cloaked. At first, she had only thought that Keira was surprised by how charming the Morningstar was but then on the same day she had forced him to dance with her. Keira had never danced with a man before.
After returning from the Star Palace, Irina felt that her master was trying hard to deny the feelings that were welling up in her heart. But those feelings had only intensified as a result. The time they spent with Aizen on The Whistling Star was the last straw and Keira started to accept her feelings for him. And now there was a deadly obsession hidden in her feelings which scared Irina.
“Why don’t you just tell him what you feel about him?” Irina finally decided to ask the question she was keeping in her heart for the past 3 months. But watching her hugging the pillow and lying on the bed that Aizen had slept on, almost brought Irina to the verge of tears. She was worried about her.
Keira didn’t answer her question and Irina thought she wouldn’t. She controlled her welling tears and walked to the dressing room.
When she returned, dressed in her sleepwear, she went straight to the bed and turned her back to Keira. Irina’s heart hurt as she feared for her Master’s well-being. They had been together for almost 600 years and never before had she felt Keira struggling with her feelings so much. And no one was clearer to how crazy she was other than Irina.
She had never seen Keira cry before but that day when they saw Aizen and his wives on Kaval, she did. It was the sight of him surrounded by all those women that hurt her. And after he had left Kaval the next morning towards the far North, she had not followed him but nearly threatened the owner of this Inn to acquire this room.
Her behavior was not normal and Irina was sure of one thing, if Keira could not get Aizen then she will probably kill him or kill herself.
“Do you think he will come to love me if I confess my feelings for him?” Keira asked in a low voice.
Irina felt a wave of happiness wash over her heart when she finally found Keira willing to talk about her feelings. She turned around and saw her hugging the pillow and staring at the ceiling.
“Yes, I believe so.” She told her. “I have seen the way he looks at you and every time he does, his heart skips a beat.”
“But he addresses me as a Zion and reminds himself that he can’t get close to me,” Keira said and then a tear slipped from the corner of her eye. “It hurts me.”
“You are part of the Zion family, Keira. Of course, he would try to maintain distance with you. But I am sure if you do confess your feelings to him and let him know that they are true, he won’t deny you.” Irina said and wrapped her arm around Keira.
The silence lasted in the room for over an hour. Irina hadn’t disturbed the thoughts of Keira and only maintained the focus on the feelings that their bond conveyed to her.
She felt that Keira’s heart had calmed down and her own heart found some peace as well.
“I want him, Irina,” Keira said.
“Then let’s go and confess your feelings.”
“I want him all to myself.”
Irina’s heart thumped hard when she heard these words. This was what truly scared her and she wished that Keira wouldn’t walk this path in her obsession.
“He’s a Morningstar, Keira.” Irina thought carefully before choosing her next words. “He needs several women around him.”
“I want him to only love me.”
Tears slipped out of Irina’s eyes as she recalled the time they had spent together. This princess of Zion had become her master when she was only three years old. She had grown up in Keira’s care and considered her as her sister. It was not just the bond of Master and Shadow that bound them. It was the care and love for each other as well. Irina was all too aware of what kind of a person Keira was. What she desired, she took it. And if someone refused it, then she destroyed it.
“He’s married to several women. If you want him then you will have to share him. There’s no other way.”
Irina said and regretted as tears were streaming down Keira’s face.
“Keira… Everything will turn out to be fine.” She said comfortingly. “And maybe in a few years, you will find someone better than him and someone who has no women around him….”
Irina had to stop midway as chills ran up her spine. Keira was glaring at her and the anger in her eyes was terrifying.
“Do you believe that I would have killed you for what you have just said, if not for I loved you?”
Irina’s heart tightened when she heard this.
“True. And you know me the best.” The anger in her voice abated but her pale smile replaced it. “Tell me, Irina. Do you think I would fall in love with another man?”
“No.” Irina closed her eyes and her heart hurt.
She knew it and understood it. Keira wouldn’t let go of something once it had entered her heart. And she couldn’t say that that it was the Morningstar’s fortune or misfortune that Keira had fallen in love with him.
“Are you going to kill him?” She asked.
“I thought about it.” Keira closed her eyes. “But the mere thought of it pains my heart. I can’t bring myself to kill him.”
“Then there’s no other way. You have to accept the other women in his life with him.”
“No, there is a way.”
Irina already knew what she wanted to say.
“I will kill all the women that surround him.”
She knew it was coming but still looked at her in disbelief.
“You will break him!” She had never yelled at her before but right now, she couldn’t contain her anger.
“At least, he will belong only to me.”
Irina was scared. And she was angry.
“You will kill me too then? Because if you marry him then I will be his wife as well.”
The moment of silence from Keira had sunk her heart and Irina was shedding tears uncontrollably.
“No, I won’t.” Keira finally said. “You said that he needs women around him and you are a part of me, so, it’s fine.”
“Keira, he is a Morningstar!” She begged her. “He needs his Empress and High-Queen and if he loses them then you know how crazy a Morningstar can become. Even you won’t be able to control him!”
“Who said he won’t have a Ka’zaed blood as his Empress? I will give him a daughter.” Keira smiled and then turned on her side to sleep.
Irina couldn’t stop shivering. She knew very well what Keira was capable of and she could very much do everything she had just said. But Irina understood that if Keira does walk down this road then she will never be able to get Aizen’s love. He was not a fool.
“If you do this, you will lose him. Remember that I warned you.”
♛ Author’s Note:
Ahem… Yandere Alert!.
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