"Are you still going to stop me now?" Nidhogg said in a cold voice.
Leguna seemed to waver. He did admit that he had a similar goal to Hocke -- vengeance against the empire. But from another standpoint, if Nidhogg had not done what he did, Alissanda wouldn't have steeled himself to kill him. He wouldn't be abandoned by Hocke and Annelotte wouldn't have died either.
In other words, apart from Lisana, he had a good reason to exact vengeance against everyone present, Nidhogg included. The problem was which side he would take. Would he stand with Nidhogg and level the whole of Melindor or fight him, the source of all his woes?
He was faced with a hard choice.
"Nidhogg?!" The moment Alissanda heard that name, his face grimmed. While he hadn't actually fought him before, he was informed about the secrets of the empire. He knew what that name truly signified. Compared to Nidhogg, Leguna wasn't even a threat at all. After all, one was a slaughterer of tens of millions of citizens that almost turned the whole continent into an undead. Leguna, on the other hand, only posed a threat when he nearly caused that energy explosion in Melindor. He didn't succeed in doing any harm.
Comparatively, Leguna was a mere pickpocket compared to Nidhogg, the merciless dictator.
That's why Alissanda's rage for Leguna completely extinguished when he heard Nidhogg's name. He knew he had to calm down because he needed Leguna's power. If there's anyone in the world that can stop him, then it would no doubt be Leguna. However, why would Leguna bother, as Nidhogg had said? Alissanda began to hesitate once more.
In the air, the four balls of light got into position and continued to release energy from the water, fire, wind and earth aspects. Those four aspects intermingled and began to transform in a complicated way.
"This is…" Innilis's eyes widened as she looked at the formation in the sky. "Big Bro Leguna! This is the genesis spell!"
"It's a spell I discovered in a tome four to five years ago," she summarized, "All things in the world are made up of the six basic aspects, even life. The genesis spell can mimic the primordial creation process and make a living body! Nidhogg's trying to use it to revive himself for good! By then, he will no longer be an extraneous lifeform, but a person that exists under the planar laws!"
"As expected of the lass I trained in so many years. You really did read the tome I gave you," Nidhogg's voice rang.
"Get out here now!" Leguna swung a sword wave at Soulslay's corpse.
"You only noticed now?" Like a ghost, Nidhogg's spirit floated out of the corpse. Before this, Leguna had suspected Nidhogg for infusing a part of his will in him. But after using Njolvinr's power for repeated checks, he realized that there were only traces of Njolvinr and Eiron's imprints. Nidhogg hadn't left anything on him.
Ever since the battle at the Stokian Magic Academy, Nidhogg's soul imprint was within Soulslay all along. There was one condition that had to be fulfilled for the imprinted soul to be released. The subject receiving the imprint had to first die. Back then, Nidhogg saw the power in Leguna and deduced that there was a small chance for him to truly die, given the power that protected him. So, he decided to infuse his imprint in Soulslay's body and borrow it to monitor the changes of the world and the empire.
Now that Soulslay was dead, he regained freedom once more. He had far more things planned. Even if his soul imprint was released, his soul would still fade away in time if he didn't have a proper body, no matter how powerful he was. So, his other plan was to collect the six aspect essences and use the genesis spell to create a perfect body for himself to revive in. By then, he wouldn't have to fear any repercussions from the planar laws in killing anyone else. He would return to the world in full power as the myth-realm magus, Nidhogg!
It was all a bet. If Soulslay had died before collecting all the aspect essences, then Nidhogg's soul would eventually be worn down and die. Fortunately, Leguna helped him achieve both his goals today. After decades, he had finally found the method to avenge his loved one. The Tide of Death was nothing. He could destroy the entire continent with his own power!
"Thank you, Leguna. It's all thanks to you that I managed to collect all six aspects to revive myself. As thanks, I'd be more than willing to let your women live," his specter said as he bowed elegantly.
"Six? But I only see four," he said, turning to them in anger, "And one of them is Annie's!"
"Don't forget that Alfreid is a gifted too," Nidhogg said. He stretched his hand out to the corpse of the premier and one black and another white essence floated out of it.
"This…" Leguna was shocked to see two aspects. He should've only had light aspect essence! Where did the black one come from?
"You're not the only gifted in this world, you know," Nidhogg reminded.
"Balor!" Leguna narrowed his eyes. Alfreid truly was a fox!
After Kurdak left Chino, Leguna still kept contact with him. Kurdak had wrote about how Balor had become a shadow creature. He said Balor was going to Alfreid's manor to find Vera the last time they met. Now, it seemed that he had been completely eliminated by Alfreid's light gifts. After that, he harvested what remained of Balor's shadow essence and kept it to himself. It seemed that Balor was completely gone from this world.
However, despite Alfreid's countless scheming and contingencies, he ended up killed by Leguna in the end. Most laughably, his corpse ended up being the key for Nidhogg's revival!
Seeing the hexagram shine bright, Alissanda decided to make his move. "Leguna, help me stop Nidhogg!"
"Stop joking around! I'll be more than happy to see you two dogs--"
Before he finished, Alissanda took something out from his pockets. Leguna saw it and spoke no more. It was a lock of silver hair! Eirinn's hair!Previous Chapter Next Chapter