"What are you talking about?" Leguna grabbed Angelista's robes by the collar. "What's going on?"
Angelista blushed as if she was enjoying the rough treatment. She even stuck her tongue out to lick his hand and said in a squeamish voice, "Ahhn… It's been ten years and you're still only gentle to those three. I'm a girl too, you know. You shouldn't be so rough on me."
Leguna regained his calm. He bowed to her and said, "Miss Angelista, I thank you for taking care of Eirinn all this time, but I hope you can tell me what she had experienced in the past ten years. How did she become like that?"
"I'm not really sure myself," she said, shrugging but serious. "One night nine years ago, Eirinn came to me. She was almost completely blind and deaf by then and moved really slowly. I asked her what happened, but she wouldn't say. She only begged me to take her in. From her expression, I think she knew all along that this would eventually happen to her."
"I didn't want to take her in initially," she said with a giggle, `"But when I thought about how you might still be alive, I reasoned that letting you owe me a favor is a pretty good deal. So, I took her in, gave her a simple disguise, and got a few students of the academy to feed and serve her. nothing much happened in this time. Then again, Eirinn really is an obedient lass! Even though she felt her world get darker and darker and her legs grow weaker, she still maintained her serene calm and cheerfulness. I would've been a goner long ago if I was in her shoes!"
Angelista pinched Eirinn's cheeks. She seemed to know who just touched her and pushed Angelista's hand aside. "Sis Angelista, don't mess around. I just bumped into someone just now. I wonder if she's hurt."
"Eirinn…" Leguna felt blades dragging across his heart at the sight.
"Sis Eirinn," Innilis said in a muffled voice. She and Leguna each held Eirinn's hands.
"Eh? You two…" Eirinn was quite surprised at the different hands, but she could feel the kindness from the touch and didn't retract her hands. Instead, she gripped them tighter.
Not far away in the sky, an incomplete body had formed within the hexagram. The genesis spell was nearing its end. Alissanda was frantic at the sight, but he knew he shouldn't interrupt Leguna and Eirinn's reunion. Otherwise, there really would be nobody to stop Nidhogg.
"Hehehe," Angelista chuckled at the impending disaster.
Alissanda shot her an angry glance. Eirinn's whereabouts had been his bargaining chip, but he didn't think Angelista would actually wipe out his agents and take Eirinn here. Now, he no longer had anything with which he could hold Leguna back with. Whether he wanted to help would depend on his whim. Had it not been for Angelista, Alissanda wouldn't have been in such turmoil.
"Are you two worried about me? I'm fine," Eirinn said. She couldn't hear what others said and her interactions with others were usually one sided. "Then again, your hands make me think of my big brother and little sister! It's been so long since I've felt such warmth."
"Why… why did I leave Sis Eirinn back then… Why am I always like that… It's all my fault," Innilis said as her tears flowed nonstop.
"Don't cry, Innie. There must be a reason behind this. It's not your fault." His eyes also started to redden.
Just as Innilis's tears fell on her hands, Eirinn suddenly stiffened. "Huh? This… feeling… In… Innie? Is that you? Is the person beside you Big Brother Leguna? Is it?"
Innilis and Leguna gripped her tight. She seemed to be used to such methods of communication. After a short daze, she asked in a fearful manner, as if she's afraid of the answer she'd get, "Is… is it really you two?"
"Yes, it's us, Eirinn! I'm here, Innie is too. We found you!" Leguna said.
"It's really you! It's really you!" Her tears began to fell as she smiled and gripped their hands tight. "You found me! That's wonderful!"
"I say… can you hold your reunion back a bit?" Alissanda finally lost his patience. "Nidhogg's almost revived, you know."
Leguna looked him in the eye and humphed coldly. "There's no point in rushing now. Do you think Nidhogg really wouldn't have some form of protection in place and use the genesis spell in front of you? Some thirty years ago, his genesis spell was broken by Marolyt and the others. I'm sure this time, he came prepared. If you don't believe it, feel free to try."
"Hmph!" Alissanda stormed away in anger and charged at the formation with Lunaminous.
The results were as Leguna had predicted. His full-power strike was completely ineffectual. Not only did he not break the formation, he didn't even impede its operation in the slightest. That was thanks to the decades of nonstop improvement to the genesis spell Nidhogg had made. It could use the power of the planar laws to ensure the formation keeps operating.
Basically, the genesis spell was based on one of the fundamental planar laws, and Nidhogg managed to tap into it for protection. Even Leguna wouldn't be able to do much against it with Njolvinr's divine power, to say no more about Alissanda. Divine power could indeed warp the planar laws to some degree, but to completely change it would require the Lord of Shadow himself to use most of his divine power to do so.
"Leguna! Leguna!" Eirinn seemed really agitated and grabbed Leguna's hand tight. "Don't leave me! I prepared a really big gift for you!"
"Gift?" Leguna had wanted to ask what it was, but there was something even more important to deal with. He turned to Angelista. "How did you communicate with her the whole time"
"Well…" She put a finger on her lip in thought. "I've always been tracing words on her back and she usually gets it. Why don't you try?"
"I see…" He touched the back of her ears. While Eirinn was only a half dark elf, she did have the signature long ears, which also happened to be a sensitive part for her. Only the most intimate of people could touch one's ears in elven culture. His touch instantly grabbed Eirinn's attention.
"Ah! Big Brother Leguna, even though it's been so long, you're as mean as ever!" she snapped, though she wasn't as conservative as her elven kin.
"I believe we have to make this decision together." Leguna chuckled at her expression and started writing on her back.
"Ei…rinn… do… you… want… to… see… Hocke… empire… fall…" she mused as he traced the words. "Big Brother… Is some kind of crisis befalling the continent?"Previous Chapter Next Chapter