I was sitting outside, underneath the large tree, enjoying my day. It wasn’t often to be spending out in nature, trying to connect with the world. I didn’t have much time that it felt like I was losing touch with nature. The soft breeze, the birds, and the insects that would chatter, which I personally felt like it, were as if they were communicating with me.
There were times when I could feel the very energy of the planet itself seeping into my body. It was always gentle at first until I dived deeply into the very core. The rush of energy wrapped around my whole body, making me ecstatic. There wasn’t much I could do but to allow the energy inside of me to devour and mingle with it.
For the past few days, all I have been doing was meditating and enjoying the Elven village’s pleasantries. The power of nature was powerful in the village compared to anywhere else. My guess was that the Elves built their village over a powerful magic hotspot.
My eyes flickered, opened, and closed. Slowly falling into sleep.
The nature around me became powerful, almost like a lull. I was quite fascinated by the amount of magic that was pouring inside me. I felt powerful, almost as if I was part of the planet itself.
Suddenly, a loud shriek could be heard.
“Berrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr Yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!” Tart came yelling towards me.
I jolted awake. The energy that had swirled around me was abruptly disconnected, making my head hummed with pain. I frowned at his sudden entrance. He came flying toward me, and he glomped onto me with tears. To see such a beautiful face contorted up in sadness, pulled my heart.
“Tart?” I was a bit taken back by his brash attack that almost flung me backward. He had to grab me and pull me into his arms to stop me from falling down. My head was woozy from the sudden spin.
“Berry.” He snuggled into my hair. Taking in a deep breath. His beautiful face was terrible for my heart.
“Are you alright?” I asked, wondering what went wrong. Something about the way he was sniffling and crying reminded me of those younger days when he was a child.
“Coco almost killed me.”
“Huh?” I was confused at his sudden statement. It was an everyday occurrence where Coco did try to “correct” him to be more of a gentleman, which she was doing a fabulous job of getting him up to her standard. There were times I would hear scary yells that were followed by a scream. I would often cross my hand and pray for his soul, knowing full well that Coco didn’t allow me to stop her.
If I was to compare her to the demon king Phil, I would hands down say Coco is the scariest maid ever. There were many times when I would instantly freeze up when she got serious with her job.
“I was just chasing away the Dragon Maiden worshippers, who stole your panties.” He bawled.
“Wait, what? My panties?” Then it hit me. I wondered where my favorite panties were, and to be told they were stolen made me cringe. What was wrong with these people? I definitely need to keep my things safer from these damn perverts. Already, dealing with a pervert demon king.
“Yes, they were sniffing it.” Tart let me go. He wiped away his tears, looking straight into god knows, whereas he told someone to stay back.
I froze. To hear that someone was sniffing my panties made me scream internally with disgust. I hoped I heard it wrong,
“So, I taught those elven thieves a lesson.” He growled. “Make sure they don’t ever come stealing your panties again.” With an arrogant puff, he pushed out his chest.
Elves….The image about them was quickly deteriorating. To hear that there were elven perverts was mind-boggling, destroying the happy-go-lucky fairy images that I was still holding on to. Now my mental image changed to old foggy farts with white beards and pretty faces sniffing panties.
I sighed. What was this world even coming too? I didn’t know.
“So, I brought back mistress panties and went to wash it.” He proudly stated as if it was nothing with a toothy grin. “But Coco smacked me with a wooden beam for saying I stole Young mistresses’ panties!” He wailed, bursting into tears.
“I see.” I contemplated what he had said.
“Coco is always hitting me!”
“Well….” I twiddled my fingers behind my back. “You kind of deserved it.” I couldn’t help but state it with a slight tinge of redness on my cheeks. Washing my panties was very embarrassing. For Coco to hit him was definitely something she would do because it was an ungentlemanlike to wash my panties. I understood Coco perfectly.
These days, I thought the elves were being a bit too friendly, but now I see that they were trying to take my things. What has the world come to?! I hope to god, I won’t be seeing anything else that would burn my mind and make me internally scream any longer, but that would probably be a pipe dream.
“Please teach Coco a lesson.” Tart puffed up his cheeks, blinking at me to look cute.
I couldn’t help but reach over and grab his cheek. The softness of it was still tender to the touch, and I didn’t want to let go.
“Owwww, young mistress!” Tart cried out in pain. He was tearing up in front of me. “It hurts.”
I let go. Tapping his cheeks a couple of times. “You shouldn’t be washing my undergarments, Tart.” I lightly scolded him. “That is very ungentlemanly of you.”
“But, young mistress! This is your panties that we are talking about! We need to keep all your clothes clean at all times to make sure that you look amazing.”
“Well, thank you, Tart, but I’m sure you don’t have to clean my panties. Please leave that job to Coco.”
“But, young mistress-”
I held up my hand on his lips. I didn’t want him to turn into a pervert, nor did I want him to be touching my panties. It was too weird.
Tart instantly understood what I was about to say, and he shook his head. It was as if I could see his invisible ears flopping to the side, defeated.
“Yes, young mistress.”
I raised my head and patted him on his head. Tart rubbed his head against my hand.
“Berry.” Phil’s voice growled behind me.
I stopped patting Tart on the head and turned to see Phil looking down from above. He was frowning very deeply at Tart as he glared.
“Phil? What are you doing here?” I asked, surprised to see him perching on a tree that I was under.
“I was here the whole time.”
“Seriously?” I didn’t feel his presence throughout the whole meditation. I was quite taken aback that he was able to allude to my detection. Not many escaped my ability to sense creatures and people.
“Yes, since this morning.”
“I hope you aren’t a pervert as well,” I mumbled under my breath.
“I’m quite sure you were the one who came here.” Phil smugly grinned. “I was just enjoying my morning day, and you came stumbling in.”
“I did not stumble,” I replied back in a hurry. “I just lost my footing.”
“You can say that.” Phil shrugged his shoulder. He then reached out to grab hold of Tart’s nape. Pulling him back, he threw him across the ground.
“Why did you do that?!” I was appalled by Phil’s sudden action.
“Because he was acting like a pervert.” Phil gracefully wiped his hand and smiled. It was as if he did the right thing. He brushed off his hand and gave his hand out toward me. “Come, we got a quick meeting.”
“Who?” I reached my hand up to grab a hold. He pulled me up to my feet.
“Someone who will lead me to my father and the council.” Phil’s face darkened. There was a heavy air around him that told me that he was bent on finishing what he had started.
His family complications were tied tightly like an ugly knot. Born to be thrown into a political marriage that his mother didn’t want. But in exchange, I fell in love with someone else. Out of jealousy, the father killed her, and the council black mailed her. The complications of the marriage between Phil’s family were entangled with darkness. Was it something that I felt sorry for? A bit, yes.
A sad love story between two different people and a politics that made this tragic. This wasn’t the typical love story that one would find in a fairy tale. I didn’t know who Phil wanted to kill, but I assumed it was finding the truth and destroying the elven council that pushed his mother and father.
I was curious as well.
“Tart, go to Coco. I’ll be back.”
“Yes, young mistress.” Tart got up and bowed. He then glared at Phil, baring his canine teeth.
Phil didn’t take much notice of it and turned his back. Both Phil and I left the forest and headed back into the village. We made our way through a handful of trees, turning and swerving into different areas, where I was starting to lose track of where we were going. A few times, we jumped over cliffs and even scaled a few trees.
I was getting tired fast. I wasn’t the type to be going on such strenuous activities when flight was my main thing.
We finally arrived at a small hut, hidden deeply in the woods. I wasn’t able to find it if it wasn’t for Phil pointing at it. Phil knocked on the door a few times, then opened it up.
A loud creak could be heard, pushing the door aside.
“Hello?” Phil called out.
We stepped into the darkroom that squeaked every time we walked on top of the creaky wooden floor. It was annoying as it announced our entrance, and I didn’t like how dark this hut was. Was this hut small? I think so for the outside, but who knows what kind of magical contraptions have been installed.
“Well. Well. Well. If it isn’t half-blood.” A heavy chuckle followed by a cough could be heard in the darkness. A yellow glow of eyes could be seen, staring back at them. “I’m honored to see that the bloodline is still alive.”
Phil grimaced. He had his hand on his sword on his hips, ready to be pulled out any minute for battle.
“It is an honor to be in the presence of a Demon Lord. My name is Horan.”
“I am no Demon Lord.” Phil retorted back.
Horan laughed. “But you are.” He said confidently.
I was shocked to hear that Horan knew what Phil could become. It was something I was trying to keep him away from the moment that I met him. My death flag was reeling its ugly head right in front of me, and I wanted to shut Horan up.
Magic was flowing in my hand, ready to shut him up if I needed to.
Horan snapped his attention at me. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you. You will want to hear this if you want to save yourself as well.”
I stopped. How did Horan know?
The magic in my hand started to flicker away, wondering what he had to say.
Horan cleared his throat. He stepped out from the darkness.
I couldn’t help but gulp in surprise.
A huge black werewolf stepped out from the darkness. His gleaming coat gave him a glistening glitter that told me that he had a luscious coat. His muscle bulked, showing off his physical features that show off his strength.
“A werewolf?!” I gasped. I haven’t heard of such creatures but the legends in a book. “I thought your kind were extinct from the last bloody Blood Rose War.”
“Extinct?” Horan looked at me, quizzically. “I assure you, our kind is well alive and thriving. The Blood Rose War was just one major loss, but that did not equate to the death of my kind.”
“I see….Your kind follows the Demon Lord.” I whispered, realizing now how he knew how Phil was a Demon lord.
“Yes. Our kind can tell when a Demon Lord is reborn.” Horan kneeled onto the ground, bowing in front of him. “Welcome back, my king.”
Phil stood still, unsure what to say. It took him a while for him to realize what kind of predicament he was in. “How does this explain anything?” He was finally able to speak again.
“Everything,” Horan spoke, looking up. “The elven council has pushed for your mother’s marriage to your father for one reason only, the birth of you and bringing back the old order.”
“Wait, I thought my mother was a high priestess and couldn’t marry. Because she choose to marry a human she was banned and what do you mean Old order?”
Even I had wondered where the mix up of the story was coming from. Cathay had said that she married and was happy. Horan had said that she only married to have Phil and left because she had a lover. Which was true? Plus she died from a high elf’s hand, which we didn’t know who.
“Well, that is partially true. SHe was sacrificed and replaced. Because she was a high priestess, she had the highest magic. THe old order was the one who pushed for this marriage with the human. Your mother’s line had abundant magical power, while your father’s line were direct descendants of the Demon Lord. An ancient order that agreed to bring back the savior that would stop the humans that dared to destroy the balance of this world. Both families agreed to bring in one child, even if they didn’t like each other,” said Horan. His tail flicked back and forth. “When the council found out that your mother had birthed you and found out that you have the same energy of a Demon Lord, the deal was completed, and she was freed from her obligation. You were brought back to live with your mother’s people.”
I was enthralled to hear the history behind the Demon Lord’s upbringing. To hear that everything was planned to bring back a Demon Lord.
“But your father wasn’t having it when your mother left,” Horan said with a serious expression. He had fallen in love while your mother didn’t. A tragic love story, I must say. When they had split, your father had devolved into the dark arts, tying himself to the humans that mean more harm than blessing. From his jealousy to stop anyone from being her lover or husband, he had killed many.”
Horror doused my face. I didn’t realize how badly love could turn a person. It was something that I couldn’t quite understand fully as how the mind and heart worked.
Phil’s expression was stoic and dark. There was a slight glistening of anger doused in his eyes.
“Your mother had enough, and the war between her and her father started. It was a short war, almost unnoticeable if the blows between the two were fast. On the night of the full moon, when your father heard that your mother had a childhood sweetheart, he stormed in and slew her on the spot out of pure jealousy. But, at the same time, your father was killed by one of her devout followers, ending the tragic love story between two people.”
I looked at Phil, wondering what was going on in his mind. There were too many questions that I wanted to ask, but those questions went away, unable to speak anything but sadness that washed over me.
Phil was a child of destiny that the eleven council had personally wanted, but not between two parents. He never felt love from his parents, but in exchange, he learned it from his grandmother and grandfather.
“My king,” Horan spoke with reverence. “Please come back to your kingdom.”
“Kingdom?” Phil gazed at Horan, confused.
“Yes. The true Demon Kingdom, where every magical creature that is ruled under you. We must get back the seat that has been left vacant for hundreds of thousands of years. With your return, it shall announce the arrival of the true king.”
I gasped. Horan was implying that he should conquer a large part of land against many different species. From the Divine, the Elves, the Orcs, the humans, and even the Beastman themselves.
Was the demon king truly the king that this world needs right now? I didn’t know, but the thumping of my death flag was blowing its ugly head. Right now, there are too many problems to solve. The first thing was that the Legendary monsters that are being resurrected and my Aunt trying to control them do her bidding. Second was the Demon King’s appearance and how he was thinking about taking over the world…how am I supposed to solve all this?
Does this mean that this was a herald to my true end?
I groaned. My heart was tight and twisted. Even my stomach lurched a few times, giving me terrible anxiety. I was hoping that this would never come to pass, but everything was coming down in waves. My breath started to quicken. I stepped backward.
Closing my eyes, I tried my best to calm my wretched mind that wouldn’t let me go. It was hard at first. I was too close to the problem. I took a step backward. Trying to detach myself away from the numerous problems that were coming to me in waves.
It took a moment for me to see that these problems weren’t something that I could deal with all at once. I knew that it would completely shackle me down, making me unable to move because of the fear of making the wrong decision.
My life wasn’t over. It was just the beginning.
“I got this.” I let my voice clearly speak out. “I got this.”
Opening my eyes, the draconic features became stronger. I looked forward toward the waves of anxiety that came to me in waves.
“I got this,” I mumbled. The staggering waves of emotions were slowly calming down. “I got this,” I said one more time.
The feeling was squandered. My confidence was growing. I ignored my doubts. Whatever was coming my way, I needed to head-on.
I stared back at Phil and Horan. Phil had a decision to make. I could not change his mind that he was set on as it was not my place to take away his choice.
I wanted to trick him or persuade him to run away, but I knew that wasn’t the right thing to do. Who knew what the future would hold from my words. Leaving behind an ugly feeling of regret wasn’t something I wanted to stop Phil. My own selfish desire made me realize how low my self-esteem was, being dragged around by uncertainty and fear because of the word of a possible future.
It didn’t happen.
I was going to make sure to live.
Phil, who was deeply engrossed in his thoughts, finally spoke up. “Why do you really need me? Is it to unify the world or for your own selfish ideas?”
“Because we need the Demon King to be reborn and lead this foolish world to greatness. To stop the humans who are trying to become a false god and ruin the magic of this world.”
“Then what about the Legendary creatures. Do you know anything about them?”
“Yes. They are working with the Black Dragon maiden. She is the real cause behind all this mess. She was the one who brought the legendary creatures into this world with the help of the corrupted human.”
“We assume it’s to rule this world.”
“As usual.” I snorted—the typical reason to rule the world and become a tyrant. My Aunt was becoming one as time passed.
“You knew?” Horan said with surprise.
“Well, it’s a typical villain thing.”
“I see.” Horan was thinking over what I had said. “What would your decision be, my king?”
Phil finally spoke with clarity. “I’ll work with you guys until we get rid of all the legendary creatures.”
Horan blossomed into excitement. His tail wagged even harder. “As you wish.”
There was no point in trying to persuade Phil. He was bent on accomplishing the Legendary creatures’ eradication, which aligned with my own goal to stop them and my Aunt. I don’t know where this would lead me, but I knew that facing forward was the only option. There was no backing down.
In the past, I knew I would have turned tail and hid away. It was all false confidence with the will to live. Now, I wanted to change even further. Facing and changing the lives around me, as many were counting on me in some way.
A responsibility that needed my attention, and as a Dragon Maiden, I needed to deal with all of them.
With a sigh that Phil finally decided on what he would do, I decided to move forward. “I’ll help you,” I said with a loud voice.
Phil turned around, looking at me with confusion. “This isn’t your problem.”
“What are you talking about?” I asked, perplexed by his statement. This was definitely my problem, and there was no way I would get out of this anytime soon. I had to see it through. “I’m your friend. I’ll be there to help. Plus, getting rid of the Legendary monsters and even stopping my Aunt is something that I can’t run away from.”
“True, but this could be dangerous.”
“Oh, for sure.” I snorted. I walked toward him a bit closer. “Life’s dangerous, and I am a dragon.”
I raised up my hand to stop him from speaking. Leaning forward, my nose was touching his. “I am a dragon, Phil. Dragon’s don’t cower.”
I leaned forward, silencing his mouth with my own. I couldn’t help it. The soft suppleness of his lips brought a desire to silence him. I enjoyed every inch of his lips that I gently kissed. It wasn’t fiery like the time Phil had given, but a gentle wave of emotions that would linger for a while.
Static electricity sparked between us, separating us for a moment.
Phil’s eyes became wide. He looked down on me with an animalistic pleasure, smacking his lips together. He was ready for another.
Horan coughed, announcing his presence.
I quickly stepped back. My cheeks turned red. My hand started to fan my burning face, looking away.
Phil glared at Horan for breaking the interruptions between us.
I thought I saw a scary smile that made me wonder if I saw things. “I assume she is your queen to be?”
I froze. My eyes became wide. “W-w-what?!” I hiccuped. “N-n-no. Absolutely not, we are just…um…” Fudge. I couldn’t think of anything. I just literally took his kiss in front of Horan like an uncontrollable girl who was lusting for that plump pink lip.
Gah! Someone shoot me now!
“She will be,” Phil said casually.
I snapped my head at him. Confused. Did I just hear incorrectly?
“It’s an honor for the future Queen.” Horan bowed at me deeply.
“What?!” I yelled. “I never said I would!”
“Oh?” Phil looked at me. “I understand. I didn’t go through the whole process of dating you, asking you to be my girlfriend, and then proposing.”
“Exactly.” I shook my head furiously, too caught up with his words that I didn’t pay attention to his last words.
“So, if I go through all that, you would say yes?” Phil casually spoke.
“Yes. Wait, what? No!” I caught myself before I made a blunder.
“You said you would help me.”
“You’re moving too fast!”
“I dare not. I like you, berry.” Phil reached over, pushing back my hair. “Please be my girlfriend.”
I gaped. He said it so smoothly that I couldn’t say anything back. Was this how players are?
Confessing with a snap of a finger, making me want to squeal and hide? Plus, he did it in front of Horan, which made it that much more uncomfortable.
Horan was watching us with interest as he was watching an intricate movie. I, on the other hand, couldn’t speak.
“Berry?” Phil came in closer. His face now up to mine, slightly hunching as his forehead touched mine.
“Yes, and yes you are answering, or yes, you will be my girlfriend?”
I opened and closed. Gulping, maybe this was the way to help and change the route to my death flag? I threw such thoughts out of my mind. I shouldn’t be thinking that and instead, be answering his question without such motives.
Did I like him? Yes. There was no question about it. The emotions that were flaring around my heart were constant.
Every day, I thought about him. Which annoyed me immensely. It was as if I couldn’t get him out of my mind, and it bothered me. I could rarely focus if I didn’t try.
“Yes.” I cleared my throat. I knew what was in my heart and what I wanted. It was to be around Phil, even more, these days, and the constant image of him cropping in my mind didn’t help.
“I’m glad.” Phil pulled me in.
Horan seems to silently cheer, giving Phil a thumbs up.
My head snuck into his chest, too embarrassed to even look at him or Horan. This was turning into a damn love soap opera, and I was in the middle of it. Did I ever foresee this ever happening? Nope. It just struck me in the back with a hammer.
Emotions were a fickle thing that I couldn’t control, especially liking someone. I hated and loved it. I hated it that I couldn’t control these rampaging emotions, but I loved feeling something like this again. It was a pleasant feeling.
“Horan, let us meet again in the three days.”
“Yes, master.” Horan stepped back into the darkness and disappeared like a ghost.
Now it was just the two of us.
With enough courage and better control of my emotions, I coughed and pulled apart. “Well, we should finally get going.”
I quickly pulled apart and turned around to hurry out of the room.
Phil reached over and grabbed my hand. “Let’s go together.”
I stopped. Slowly nodding my head. Phil beamed with happiness as he grabbed my hands. It was warm. I couldn’t help but entangle my finger together as they stepped out the door.