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To Arthas’s surprise, the view outside the door was a quiet town.
Maybe it’s because the resident of this city heard of the virus infection in Wenhan City, which wasn’t far from here. Everyone in this town was in a hurry. They were planning to leave the town with big luggage. But in a normal situation, this town had a beautiful landscape that would become a popular tourist destination.
Arthas stood in the doorway, wearing a cloak. For some reason, the disguise glasses couldn’t work on her. This was a bit annoying for Lucius. Luckily, the cloak could hide her striking silvery-white hair and nekomimi.
Where did the Master go? Arthas scanned the street and couldn’t find a signal of Lucius at all. She closed her eyes and quietly followed the vague connection between them.
Passing through the streets paved with stones, the surrounding buildings were all in Western European architecture. It felt like she was traveling in Europe, rather than China. It also gave the town an old and rustic feeling. It was almost sunset, Arthas’ shadows stretched long as she walked through the streets. The town had become peaceful and quiet with the comfort that made you want to stay here for a while.
This is the Master’s hometown? The vampire’s hometown?
Arthas couldn’t figure out why Lucius’ hometown was here, instead of a creepy old mansion. She followed the path out of the town to a hill, where she found him. Alone, in a cemetery. She passed through the tombstones erected to mourn the dead. At the back of the cemetery, Lucius was half-kneeling in front of a tombstone. He held a bouquet of flowers in his hand.
Arthas stopped behind him. Her first impression of Lucius was although he looked gentle, it was only a disguise. A monster slept inside him, desperate for destruction! She still had the memories when she became an Exorcist. From what he did, she could feel that Lucius loathes humans deeply. But why would a monster come to this place? Aren’t cemeteries a place to mourn dead humans? Arthas was still puzzled.
Lucius wiped off the dust from the tombstone with his hand, revealing the occupation of the owner of this tomb.
“Nun…” murmured Arthas in a low voice out of the words written in English above the tombstone.
A nun who gave her body and the soul for the sake of the light. Why would the Master, a creature of darkness, visit the grave of a nun?
“She was my mother…” Lucius said, gently stroking the tombstone, which was slowly decayed by time.
“Mother?!” The nekomimi on Arthas’s head stood vertical
“Well, more like an adoptive mother. She was the one raising me when I was a child. Surprising, isn’t it? A nun, raising a vampire…”
Indeed… it was astonishing.
Lucius had a reluctant smile on his face. A different smile from his usual diabolic smile, but this time he wore a genuine gentle smile.
“She’s a fool, being the owner of an abbey, but continued adopting homeless children and slowly turning the abbey into an orphanage.” Lucius murmured quietly, confiding in Arthas. “She’s really annoying. Every time we ate, she told us never to forget to thank the Gods, and every time we slept, she told us not to forget to say thanks to the Gods. She nagged a lot, and it became really annoying.” Lucius’ hand, which was stroking the tombstone, suddenly stopped.
“And then?” Arthas saw that Lucius stopped talking, and instinctively asked.
“And then, she died…” Lucius stood up and looked at the letters written on the tombstone. “This was a beautiful town, a great place for tourism, indeed. The abbey was a great tourist attraction and money maker, so a local property developer wanted to buy the abbey. But that fool says things like ‘If I sell it to you, the children will lose their home’, that kind of stupid thing. And then, she died. Humans were truly horrible creatures. What they can’t get, they’ll take it, even by force.”
“But it’s really nice.” Lucius turned his head and looked at Arthas, still wore the same smile on his face. “Her death was on her news. And that developer was terrified that the town would suspect him being the mastermind of her death and then he’ll be thrown into jail or something like that. He gave us a lot of money and told us not to talk about it. So, after she died, life in the abbey got better.”
It was really great…
“Master…” Arthas suddenly noticed something in the corner of Lucius’ eyes.
“Is it raining?” After turning away, he left the cemetery. “Arthas, let’s head to the abbey so we won’t get caught in the rain…”
It’s raining? Arthas looked at the sunset on the small slope, where the sun was clearly visible. She didn’t say anything and followed Lucius. The abbey sits at the end of the cemetery, with the town in the background—a lone abbey, crows hovering near the decayed building. As soon as Lucius entered the old abbey, the crows that stood on top of the building suddenly fell down to the ground, dead.
Arthas took a closer look at the crow. Its heart was crushed and burst open.
She glanced at Lucius, didn’t understand why he did this.
The abbey’s door was blocked by heavy iron locks, and the doors and windows around it were also sealed. The abbey simply looked like a haunted house that no one dared to approach it at all. Then, Arthas saw Lucius stood at the door. An icy blue luster spilled out from her body, and the iron locks on the door were frozen into ice, falling to the ground with a heavy clunking sound. Lucius felt it was good to have a servant.
He pushed the door open and stepped inside, dust floated over the building the moment they entered. Lucius ignored the statue in the church in front and walked straight inside.
At this moment, he could no longer resist his heart and walked straight into a room. It was a small dusty room. There were several beds placed inside, along with two small coffins. A chair and a table were placed in front of the beds and a kerosene lamp that had run out of its power.
Arthas followed Lucius inside, she picked up a book on top of the table in the doorway. Dusting off the dust from the book, it was a children’s storybook. She took a glance at the room and could imagine how the children who once lived here spent their evenings. Listening to the person sitting in this chair and reading them stories until they drifted away to sleep. Did he also feel that way? Arthas looked at Lucius, who was turning one of the coffin’s covers open.
“It’s here! I found it!” Lucius shouted excitedly. He took a small box from one of the coffins. The window in this room was the only one that wasn’t sealed, the last ray of sunset sky illuminated the room.
“?” Arthas walked behind Lucius and looked at the small box in his hand. Inside, there were pictures, a lot of them, children’s pictures. But no matter how many pictures were there, there was no picture of Lucius. Vampires were creatures unrecognized by God, so they wouldn’t leave any images on the photos.
“It’s…here” As if he found a treasure box, Lucius rummaged through the pile of photos and pulled out a piece of paper, a drawing paper. “Great… it’s really… still here…” Lucius was relieved, tossing the small box aside. Only holding the drawing paper.
Arthas walked beside Lucius, looking at the drawing paper spread in his hands. It was a drawing of a girl. She was no more than 10 years old, she wore her long raven hair down with tears on the corner of her eyes. Smiling with narrowed eyes and stretched out her hands as if she was going to embrace someone. The painter’s skill was excellent, almost completely expressing the joyful mood the girl felt—it felt…alive.
Arthas took a look at the levers above the corner of the paper.
‘For my beloved sister…’
Sister? She looked at Lucius again. She was the Master’s sister? So that means the Master painted this? Where is the Master’s sister now?
“I’ve had what I need to take.” A scroll to keep the drawing paper appeared in Lucius’ hand. After carefully placing the paper inside, “It’s time to leave this town.”
This was the only reason he came here?
Lucius walked out of the abbey without looking back. Arthas, who was a quiet person in the first place, didn’t ask much and continued to follow behind Lucius in silence.
What will he do next? Continue to spread darkness all over the world?
Maybe it was an illusion, Arthas looked at Lucius’ back. For a moment, she could feel that he really had the last remnants of compassion. But was that really possible? For a monster like him?
No… it couldn’t be…
Under the last ray of the setting sun, Lucius passed by one of the date palms in this town. He glanced at the date palms garden, noticing a petite figure in the garden. It was a little girl, she probably ran away from home and ended up starving and wanted to eat those dates. Even in winter, there were still some dates hanging on the tree, although scarce. Lucius walked towards the little girl.
Is he going to feed on her? Arthas looked at Lucius from a distance. All vampires loved the blood of virgins.
But what happened next left Arthas puzzled.
“You can’t reach it, right?” Lucius carried the little girl on his back and made her sit on his neck.
“Whooo! I’m so tall! Big brother! I can reach it now!” The little girl excitedly stretched out her hands towards the date branch and grabbed a few large dates.
“Be careful.” Lucius had a smile on his face as if he was enjoying the scene.
“Un!” After the little girl had grabbed enough dates, Lucius placed her carefully on the ground.
“Just this once for today. Don’t run away again from your home, your parents will be worried.” Lucius stroked the girl’s head.
“I got it! Thank you, big brother…” She slipped a red date in her hand to Lucius, “I’ll go find mom and dad, here, take this as a gift.”
Lucius stood in the middle of the garden and watched the little girl’s figure disappeared from his view.
After that, Arthas approached Lucius, completely unable to understand why Lucius had done that. But the smile on Lucius’s face was genuine.
“Don’t ask anything, don’t say anything.” Lucius pointed to the sunset that was about to set.
“Watch the sunset with me just this once. The last sunset of this town…”
Eventually, Arthas and Lucius sat together on top of a hill near the cemetery that allowed them to view the entire town.
At the moment the sun went down, the entire town was engulfed in darkness. A tranquil and soothing atmosphere emanated from the early night sky.
“Arthas.” Lucius held the scroll containing the drawing in his hand and muttered to the servant beside him.
“Summon the Scourge.”
“Master!” The nekomimi on Arthas’s head rose again, and she stared at Lucius, who still had a smile on his face.
“Summon the Scourge. Do you not hear me? This is your first order, and you want to defy it?”
This is your hometown! The lingering memory of this town that Lucius had just shown was definitely not fake, and his tears… but why?
“I came to this town to take this.” Lucius held the painting in his hand. This is enough. “Indeed. I confess I would like to guard this town. I wanted to maintain its peace. But it’s simply impossible.”
“I can only guard one thing with my life. If I want to guard too many things, it will lose its meaning. That’s the only thing I want. So, Arthas, summon your Scourge. I want to dye the world in darkness…”
She didn’t resist anymore. The cloak draped over her body fluttered up, revealing her long, pale silvery-white hair, whiter than snow. And the Great Lich King drew her legendary sword, Frostmourne!
Trembling darkness spreads throughout the land.
Arise! My army!
Arthas stabbed the Frostmourne into the ground. Then, the earth began to shake. A mass of dead skeletons suddenly emerged from the ground, holding rotten blades, their eyes burning with blue soul fire. Screeching and rattling with decay. An army of the dead!
“Let this town go up in flames…” This time, it was Lucius who gave the order… “Destroy!” Lucius took off his disguise glasses and tossed them aside. The scarlet luster in his eyes flickered with malevolent intent.
“Destroy everything within your sight! Leave nothing behind! Burn every single brick and tile! Kill all life! Wipe all the blood off the floor! Whatever it is, destroy them all!”
Lucius swung the sword, and the Scourge let out an ear-piercing roar as they began to trample everything in the town. Everything!
This is all I need to hold in my hand! Lucius had set his determination from the very beginning. Even if it means he should destroy everything, including himself, just to resurrect her!
Arthas looked at Lucius, standing amidst the endless legions of the undead. Mighty? Unbeatable? Terrifying? Arthas didn’t feel that. She only felt pity for Lucius.
As for the reason why… Arthas looked at a skeleton that held no sword, no shield, no weapon of any kind among the legions of the undead. Judging from its decaying clothes, it appeared to have been a nun in life. Its body had been reduced to white skeletons, only could fight with its hand and teeth. The corpse of that cemetery had joined the legions of the undead.
Now, Arthas understood how scary Lucius’ determination was. Even if it means giving up his ego, he wanted to destroy this world. So, what makes him like this?
Is it because of the painting in his hand? The picture of the beautiful young girl in the painting. The one Lucius wanted to embrace must be her, right?
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