~ Chapter 143: The little brother ~
[Nanya's point of view]
On the Demon Continent it wasn't that unusual for Demio parents to see their children as tools for acquiring more power and wealth. The same went for the other species as well, but the big difference between us and them was the iron law that made it impossible for us to kill them to achieve that purpose: Blood is sacred.
For a Duke in the Paramanium Empire it didn't matter if he sacrificed his second or third son in order to win against another noble or to gain more land. On this continent, however, he would be subjected to trial for murder and risk lose everything he owned.
The loophole was that as long as you didn't kill your blood relative with your own hands or ordered their death, you could pretty much do anything else including torture and sequestration. Which was exactly what my little brother Eventel feared was happening to his wife Viola in her father's domain.
“So not only did he force you to change the trade taxes in your city, but he also ordered you to slander my name in order to worsen your reputation with both our family and your people?” I asked as I was leaning back into my seat, arms crossed at my chest, and eyes closed.
“Yes.” Eventel replied from the other side of the table.
“Well, this gives me two good reasons to go and kick his annoying face into the ground.” I said as I opened my eyes.
“But what about Viola?” he asked a bit worried.
“I will find her and free her too. If I rampage around a little bit, he will be forced to take notice of me.” I showed him a smirk.
Eventel lowered his head and tightened his fists.
“Solstark is really powerful... He's doing this because I took Eventel from him.” he said.
“Wait, I thought a Duke of Chaos can only control one city at a time? Did that law change in the past decades?” I asked tilting me head to the left.
He shook his head “No, it didn't. What Solstark wanted to do was to put a puppet in my stead, a demon whom he could control as he pleased. At the same time when he was preparing to set his plan into motion, I took over Eventel.”
“And how does Viola come into play?” I asked him furrowing my brow.
“I met Viola soon after and fell madly in love with her. I took her as my wife, but at that time, I didn't know she was Solstark's daughter. Initially, he tried to use her to control me, but he failed. Then, he tried to threaten me to give up my position to his minion, but that failed as well. Left with no other choice, he sent a message to Viola, through which he let her know of her mother's ill condition.” he raised his head and looked into my eyes.
There was anger in his gaze.
“It was a lie, wasn't it?”
“Viola is a kind and gentle demoness. As soon as she heard the news, she hurried to Solstark, where her father caught her and locked her up. I found out the truth, that her mother wasn't sick, when it was far too late for me to do anything. A week Viola left, I received a lock of her hair and a letter through which Solstark stated that the law 'Blood is sacred' doesn't stop him from torturing her.” he explained.
“I refused to obey him at first, but then... after another week had passed, he sent me her ring finger with a note. If I dared to disobey him again, next time I would receive a hand or a foot or maybe an ear or an eye, whatever he felt like cutting then.” he said these disturbing words with a clear note of pain and sadness in the tone of his voice.
There was anger in his eyes but also worry, which showed me just how much he loved his wife Viola.
I leaned back in my chair and crossed my arms at my chest. Pain, anger, and worry were all swirling in his heart like a tornado that was about to touch ground and wreck havoc on everything it touched. Eventel was doing well holding it all back, but it made me wonder for how much longer he could keep it up. Where was his bursting point that would make him ignore his title and city to go march to Solstark to rescue Viola?
Yet, how would helping him benefit me? When thinking about this, I realized that there were plenty of things I could ask for him in return, but so few other things that were truly worth it. Among them, his trust as my little brother, as family, was far more important than a lot of other things.
I decided to go with that, to help him because he was my little brother, because he was family, but at the same time pull a string or two to see if I could get some backing through him.
Sitting up from my chair, I stretched my arms and told him “I understand.”
Eventel furrowed his brow when he saw me.
“You want to get Viola back, that's why you slandered my name. Solstark was thinking that it would eventually cause mother and father to act and order you to stop. This in turn would cause friction between you and our family, which would result in the end in having less allies, especially from the High Demios on the continent.” I explained.
“That's right, but do not forget that the taxes I lowered and raised had a direct influence on the economic growth of Solstark. After all, they mostly influenced the goods imported and exported there through my city. I was also forced to make it difficult for the merchants to trade with me as well as spread the rumor that it might be easier to do so with him.”
“And the truth is...” I pressed.
“That Solstark is bad for business.” he narrowed his eyes at me.
“Is that so?” I said as I looked up and scratched my chin. “Then this settles it!” I declared as I clapped once, startling Eventel.
“What's settled?” he asked furrowing his brow.
“I'm going to go over to Solstark and get your wife back.” I replied with a smile.
“What?!” Eventel slammed his hands on the table and stood up, knocking back his chair and letting it fall on the ground with a loud thud.
A smirk formed on my lips when I saw him react like this. He definitely wasn't expecting me to offer my help.
“No! You can't do that! He'll defeat you or worse hold you hostage as well!” he retorted shaking his head.
This time, I was the one who was taken by surprise by his words. I wasn't expecting him to care about what would happened to me if Solstark managed through some godly miracle to capture me.
“Don't worry, little brother, I'll make sure to bring back your beloved wife. I'm far more powerful than I let out to be! Nyahaha!” I laughed and then walked up to him and patted him on his head “But it's nice to know you care about me.”
“No!” he swapped my hand away “Definitely WRONG! I hate big sister!” he declared with flushed cheeks and turned his head away.
“Aw! How sweet! You called me big sister! You are such a cutie!” I said, and I couldn't resist to hug him and squeeze him.
My sudden gesture startled the nearby attendants, who didn't know how to react. After all, their lord was waving around his arms and trying to free himself from my grasp.
With a bit of reluctance, I let him go.
“Huff! Huff!” Eventel was gasping for air while leaning on his knees.
At the same time, his attendants let out a breath of relief.
They must really like you, Eventel. I thought as I tossed them a quick glance.
“You're really going to go after Solstark?” my little brother asked as he looked up at me with serious eyes.
“Of course.” I nodded.
He remained silent for a moment as he recovered his breath and straightened his posture.
My relationship with this man could only be summarized to what has happened in this short amount of time. Naturally, he was suspicious of me as to whether or not I could do it. What he heard of me was probably only from word of mouth from my other siblings and parents, and maybe a little from the rumors that were spread about me. I was known to be as the weakest among my siblings, but my earlier bout with Eventel proved him that I was at least powerful enough to hold my own in front of an opponent that was at least as strong as him.
As long as Solstark wasn't some Over Supreme monster in hiding, I had nothing to worry about, but if he was, why use such bothersome methods as torture and threats to take over this city? Why not just go for mother and overthrow her? Someone at my level should be capable of at least that.
“Let us say that I trust you can do it.” he said, breaking the silence.
“What makes you think I can't do it?” I giggled.
Eventel didn't reply, instead he continued with what he had to say “Let us say for the sake of argument that you can really defeat Solstark and return Viola to me, what I want to know is what do you, Nanya Demonarkiar the 2nd have to gain from all of this?”
Straight to the point, I see. I thought and then let out a sigh as I closed my eyes. When I opened them, I told him “I want your political backing as well as that of any other Demios out there you can convince that Nanya Demonarkiar the 2nd Deus isn't the same demoness as she was over a century ago.”
The tone of my voice was a serious one and through my words, I underlined a very important detail: within the Demon Continent my political power was by far the lowest.
During my time with Illsyore, I learned from Ayuseya why one shouldn't take a political title lightly. Sometimes, the words of an idiot in power could lead to the deaths of all the brilliant minds in a kingdom. If those with intellect and good will didn't take the chains of politics in their own hands, then no one was going to fight with them.
On the Demon Continent, I was the only one from Illsyorea who mattered in mother's eyes. I didn't even know if she cared about her grandchildren in a good way. I guess, this entire journey was so that I could have a meeting with her and let her know of Natrasku and Kormian. If anything, I wanted her to be a good grandmother for them since they couldn't expect for one from their father's side.
All in all, I wanted to have multiple ways of reaching my busy mother besides the obvious one which implied me beating her guards to a pulp.
“I understand. I'll do it.” Eventel agreed.
“Very well, little brother. Trust your beautiful older sister to bring her sister-in-law back to you!” I showed him a big smile on my lips.
“Make sure to be at the border with Solstark's territory near the Plains of Fire. I for one will take a trip straight through that fiery hell!” I declared with a smirk.
“You'll die if you go through there.” he furrowed his brow.
“Nah! At most, I'll just get a decent warm up! Don't worry about me, I'm far more powerful than I let out to be! Nyahaha!” I patted his shoulder and then moved towards the exit.
With those words said, I left Eventel city and made my way North towards the Plains of Fire. I was heading that way anyway, so whether I marched there through a smoldering hot lava hell or a monster-filled forest of nightmares didn't really make that much of a difference to me. Both were places with monsters barely over level 1000 at most over 1500, so still far too weak to be my match.
My only concern was in how I was going to find Viola and whether or not she really was being held captive by her father. It wasn't that rare to meet the daughters of powerful people marrying to enemy families just so that they could stab them in their back when they were at their weakest.
If this demoness was like that, then I didn't plan on showing her any mercy. I would make her confess everything in front of Eventel and have her divorce on the spot.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
I know some of you are troubled by my typos and at times grammar mistakes. I do edit it to the best of my abilities before posting it, but some things just slip through for various reason (mostly because before editing it, the whole chapter is a mess). However, if you have fun looking for them, go ahead and let me know where they are. On my discord server, there's a special channel just for that: help_author_edit
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