Mare stood at the entrance of the library wearing a worried expression as he looked around the hallway hoping to find Beatrice.
[Mare] "She sure is taking a long time..."
He whispered anxiously, as he fondled his staff worriedly on what could be taking so long for the spirit to arrive.
While most people would have been fed up and simply leave after waiting for as long as Mare, he was aware that girls often take longer times getting ready than boys and that waiting for a longer time is no big deal, or at least that's what his older sister says, which is why despite waiting for thirty more minutes than originally planned he still waits patiently for her to (Hopefully) arrive.
This is why he perked up when he suddenly heard the sound of footsteps coming from around the corner of the hallway, however instead of meeting with a tardy Beatrice, he instead came upon a different young-looking girl.
[?] "Ahh it seems as if I have finally managed to find someone inside of this strange building."
The person that Mare had managed to stumble upon appeared to look like a young girl despite her manner of speaking like an old woman, she wore a black and pink robe and had bright pink hair, and was holding a strange-looking staff.
[Mare] "Umm I'm sorry but who are you?"
[Ryuze] "Ahh yes, how impolite of me. My name is Ryzue Alma and I have been merely seeking the library in this establishment as ordered by [The Apostle]."
While Mare may have been originally a bit hesitant to speak to the stranger, however, after noticing her pointy years, his worries disappeared as they were quickly replaced by happiness upon finding another member of the elf race.
[Mare] "Ahh, I see well coincidently this is the library!"
Mare said excitedly as he beamed a small smile glad to have met another person who hopefully enjoyed the pursuit of knowledge like him and Beatrice-Chan however he was even more excited for the potential of making a friend and ally for Ainz-Sama and perhaps even himself.
[Beatrice] "That is exclusively for students and staff only, I suppose."
A voice interrupted from the other side of the door of another nearby room as Beatrice exited her Door Crossing storming as she slammed the door behind her as she glared hatefully towards the pink-haired girl who merely looked at her with a small emotion of surprise.
Mare questioned as he stared at the girl who he was supposedly waiting for, already in the library and not just that but was now glaring at the stranger with such hate as if she killed her parents in cold blood.
[Beatrice] "Apologies Mare for arriving late, a certain human was making a foolish and sad attempt to act like a mature parent to Betty I suppose."
She said sighing as she let out a small face of disgust of recalling how Subaru had tried to teach her how to use a small ballon-like device that Subaru and Kazuma invented a while ago that she believed was called a "Condom"?
[Beatrice] "However, the pathetic human kept on turning red and stuttering like a buffon when that half-elf girl asked questions that Betty merely left them, I suppose. However, it seems that even Roswaal attempted to interfere with Betty and Mare tea time by asking for help on such minimal and easy tasks for a great spirit such as myself, I suppose."
Beatrice said lamenting the terrible experience and great waste of time that the two annoying humans brought to her once again.
Mare let out a small nervous chuckle on a long ramble of excuses that Beatrice-Chan went on however he was glad that Beatrice wasn't just ignoring him or wasting time diddly daddlying (Who even says that anymore!) intentionally.
However, his attention quickly shifted between the two small and petite girls as he began to notice that the atmosphere between the two didn't seem to be on the same page as Beatrice was still upset at the pink-haired girl for some reason unbeknownst to Mare, and Ryuze who in response stared at her quietly with a small and barely noticeable look of confusion on her face until alas she finally spoke for the first time since the appearance of Beatrice.
[Ryuze] "Well, then this certainly a surprise seeing you outside your forbidden library Beatrice-Sama."
Beatrice: "The same could be going to you seeing as how you are supposed to be watching over the Sanctuary as we speak, I suppose."
The loli girls bickered as Mare merely watched on silently frowning slightly as Beatrice seemed to be getting more aggressive at the second.
Ryuze: "The Sanctuary? What are you talking about Beatrice-Sama?" The pink-haired girl questioned as she tilted her slightly in confusion.
Beatrice: "You have a poor taste of humor, I suppose. Especially to joke about something as important as your contract in front of a great spirit, in fact."
Alma: "While that may have been my original contract, due to the unfortunate events of the Sanctuary, there is no longer any Sanctuary. However, I still uphold my contract by serving the [The Apostle] for the past two years as stated in my contract with Echidna-Sama. I thought you knew this Beatrice-Sama?"
[Beatrice] "What! Why wasn't I told about this by Roswaal?!"
Beatrice said alarmed and surprised at how such a big and tremendous detail was left out by Roswaal especially when it connects the Mathers family and Beatrice's history.
[Ryuze] "This happened two years ago I thought you were well aware of this fact Beatrice-Sama?"
[Beatrice] "Well obviously not! How did it even happen in the first place!? Wasn't there supposed to be a shield to protect them I suppose!"
[Ryuze] "Well I am afraid that I cannot recount all the details since I was busy evacuating all the villagers before the attack. You can, however, attempt asking [The Apostle] if you truly want all the full details that I'm sure he would be willing to share with you if you asked, after all, he is inside the library as we speak.
Letting out a small chuckle Beatrice responded
[Beatrice] "You must be ridiculous if you think that someone could have possibly broken inside. I myself put the locks down and I doubt that Roswaal much less anyone can simply…."
As she was attempting to tell Ryuze rather rudely, she suddenly widened her eyes as she indeed felt the presence of three unknown presences currently inside. She quickly turned her attention to the small magical lock which was supposed to lock the entrance however she found it to have been completely destroyed with some kind of magic to an extent that even she doubted that Roswaal could replicate.
[Beatrice] "Break in, I suppose…"
Mare was surprised as well considering he was aware of Beatrice magical power which garnered even Ainz-Sama's respect and while he was sure that Ainz could easily break in had he tried, this new and foreign magical power that resided on the lock felt certainly different than the one inflicted on the magical lock as it more resembles a more precise shot than Ainz-Sama who would have just opted to destroy it completely or had someone else destroy it for him to conserve his energy over such trivial matters.
As he observed it carefully alongside Beatrice and Ryuze who also seemed to be surprised by the strength of the magic residue, he suddenly slipped on the floor letting out a yelp as he did so as he tumbled on the floor.
[Beatrice] Are you alright I suppose?"
[Mare] "Ye-ah but why is there sand here?"
Mare asked befuddled as he cupped the small amount of sand that was left nearby the broken lock that he by bad luck stumbled on, however, Beatrice suddenly grabbed Mare's wrist as she silently let out a small curse for her poor luck.
Beatrice wrinkled her nose in disgust as she began to explain to the confused dark elf boy.
[Beatrice] "This has just become more irritating, the sand contains traces of miasma, meaning we have a possible witch cultist on the prowl."
[Mare]: "Witch cultist?"
Beatrice: "Just some of the most disgusting individuals and scum in our world, but they have certainly crossed the line by trying to sneak into my- I mean our library, I suppose.
[Mare] "I-I see… well if that's the case…. if you're okay with it, would it be fine if I help?"
[Beatrice] "...while I doubt Betty will need it, Betty certainly appreciates it Mar…"
Mare: "I know I'm weaker than my sister but I promise I won't weigh you down! Despite my young age, I am still a guardian of Nazarick and I have a duty to help you as an ally to Nazarick and f-f-friend…"
While Mare may have sounded very determined and loud at the beginning of his sentences which was rather unbecoming of his shy and docile nature, he still couldn't help but blush and look down at the floor in embarrassment as he proclaimed to be Beatrice friend much to the delight of an amused Ryuze and a startled Beatrice who certainly didn't expect Mare to act in such a way.
[Beatrice] *Sigh* "Very well, you may help Beatrice exterminate these pests I suppose.
However, suddenly Beatrice gave an angry glare towards Ryuze, startling her and Mare.
[Beatrice] "Be aware that if I find this "Apostle" person dealing with the Witch Cult or worse they're part of the Witch Cult, then Betty will hold no mercy against them, despite how close you may be with them and that's a promise, I suppose.
[Ryuze] "You have nothing to worry Beatrice-Sama, I am certain that they wouldn't stoop to that level in the first place. After all, everything they have done is to ensure that you and everyone will be safe and happy.
Beatrice merely sighed before nodding her head in approval, not bothering to understand this "Apostle" person was and their connection that they seemed to have with her seeing as how they are about to encounter them the moment they are inside the rather small library where she could question as much as she pleases.
Beatrice: "Now then, Betty wants to catch and punish the intruders as soon as possible so Betty can alas finally enjoy some peace and qui.."
However, when Beatrice tried opening the door, a small sharp, and flying object came out from the room at an unbelievable speed that no one even noticed until it impacted the nearby wall by the group, the needle which narrowly missed Beatrice's head, left a smoking hole and crater in the wall.
[Beatrice] "...et, I suppose."
Beatrice had quickly closed the door after seeing the extent of the danger of who may be inside held, and she remained hesitant to open the door as everyone in the group was still recovering from what had happened; she wasn't quite sure what to do until she heard a familiar and precious voice from deep within her memories.
[Echidna] "I am leaving you in charge of the forbidden library Beatrice. Your job is to protect it from any threats you may encounter until you meet "they". After all, knowledge is the most powerful weapon anyone can have, and no matter how insignificant it may seem, your role is to protect every book and page from those who you deem intruders. I trust you can do that, Beatrice?"
After hearing that, the answer was quite clear on what she had to do. After all, Beatrice is a good girl for her mother.
Mare yelled in surprise and fright as Beatrice slowly started to open the door as light suddenly enveloped the group and took them inside the library, albeit not the one they expected.
After the light had dimmed and Mare could finally open his eyes he couldn't help but marvel at where they are.
[Mare] "Where are we?"
[Ryuze] "Oh my, I certainly didn't expect for a library of this magnitude to be held in a rather simple building."
Instead of being in the small and rather modest library that the school had provided to them like they were expecting, they were now in a grand and large library that contained miles upon miles of books with multiple stairs and levels in order to fit the sheer amount of black covered books that seemed to be never-ending.
Mare could only look in amazement with stars in his eyes, with Ryuze looking over every detail this place had in store in fascination, and even Beatrice, a librarian who has seen her fair share of books in her long life span of being a great spirit seemed to be amazed and appreciate the vast amount of books.
[Beatrice] "Mother would have certainly enjoyed this place, I suppose."
When suddenly they heard a loud crash and they saw many needles much like the one from earlier lying on the floor Mare could barely make out what Beatrice said since his and everyone else's attention was currently focusing on one thing.
[?] "You truly are a worthless and pitiful man, aren't you [Gluttony]?"
Between fallen bookshelves and books, a hooded and well-dressed figure could be seen leering at a white-haired man who was struggling to breathe due to the hooded man strangling the man without mercy.
A voice full of desperation came out as a new figure could be made out as a large array of needles much like the ones seen from earlier, suddenly came closer to the hooded figure at an incomprehensive speed leaving the area they were standing in full of smoke.
The figure which was quickly identified as a woman who seemed to be wearing the absolute minimum for clothing rained down needles upon needles which struck with such force that it completely annihilated anything that it hit.
However once the smoke had settled, the two figures were still left there untouched and without even a speck of dust on their outfits despite the area being destroyed as tatters of paper and the demolished bookshelves laid in ruin.
[Gluttony] "I'm being very generous in our offered contract don't you think? I have provided and compromise for everything you and "her" have asked me so far and, yet you demand more from me for things that I cannot possibly provide? My, my you truly are [Greed]!"
The white-haired man asked, sounding rather smugly despite his poor appearance however after hearing what he had to say, he was suddenly thrown into one of the still-standing bookshelves across the room which quickly came tumbling down unable to sustain the weight of the man as the many black books fell on the floor and some even on top of the man, as the sound of paper rustled among the library, he let out a loud pained gasp of air before coughing out blood.
With him finally being free from the hooded figure grasp, everyone could now have a proper chance to see his appearance. He had a strikingly familiar face which Mare could not recall from where and he had the odd trait of white hair despite him looking quite young and one of his sharp and rather scary looking eyes were milky white although Mare wasn't quite sure if it was blind as with a pained expression in his face he still attempted to look over certain areas of the library looking for something or someone.
The female yelled frantically as she ran towards the green hooded man in a hasty and worried manner as she seemingly effortlessly pulled him out of the piles of books as she let out small tears while doing so upon seeing his poor state seeing as how he was now covered in his own blood as he clutched his arm while wincing in pain.
[Greed] "Tsk. I suppose I asked for too much from a mere fake of the original. Especially for someone who would be so willing to do the things you could do without thinking of the bigger picture, I suppose."
However, despite his current circumstance which seemed to be against him, the white-haired man slowly started to loud a quiet and dry chuckle which slowly turned to a loud and almost maniacal sounding laugh as it echoed around the room.
[Gluttony] "Heh that's a rather funny thing to say considering we are all fakes and you know it. You claim that your actions will lead to everyone's happy ending? That's a load of horse shit and you know it, he would never become like you, and as a result, you're just like me and everyone else, a fake. I suppose I should have realized you were a lost cause when you couldn't even save Otto and Re-.
[Greed] "ENOUGH. I have had enough of your foolishness and I believe that it's about time I taught you a lesson despite the earful I am going to get later from Echi-
[Beatrice] "That is enough I suppose!"
Beatrice yelled furiously unable to bottle her growing rage and annoyance as the small crystals of [El Minya] started to form, promptly surrounding the figures to their surprise.
[Beatrice] "How infuriating in fact! Betty and Mare were supposed to have a calm and peaceful tea party free from the interference of those annoying and stubborn humans however, wherever Betty goes there is always trouble it would seem, in fact!
[?] "Oh hey it's number one again! Or was it number two?"
[Beatrice] "Stop with the confusing talk I suppose! And Betty wants her library back to where it was originally this instant, I suppose!"
The hooded man and white-haired man were frozen in place the moment they heard Beatrice voice as the conflict they had with one another disappeared as it was suddenly replaced with a feeling of -
[Beatrice] "And you especially!"
[Beatrice] "You were responsible for this some way or another weren't you?!"
[Beatrice] "How irritating can you be I suppose! Why am I not surprised in fact! It's always your fault when something goes wrong! You are truly worse than even a witch cultist!"
Beatrice shouted with such anger that surprised everyone, herself included. She was especially surprised that she could hold this strong of an resentment to a stranger and if she even was in control anymore, however as confused as she may be, her feelings of anger were even stronger as the words came naturally almost like she had said these words to him countless of times.
While Greed may have initially been excited and elated on seeing Beatrice, his expression was slowly starting to turn into confusion and dread.
[Beatrice?] "I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU! I HATE YOU!"
Upon saying that all the El Minya crystals suddenly changed directions as they all pointed towards the hooded man and without a warning, they all shot forward him at dangerous speeds however it was to no avail as they all merely passed by the man as if he wasn't even there and instead destroyed the bookshelves behind the man, shredding and ripping all the books in an instant.
However, he wasn't paying attention to the dangerous spells launched towards him as his body was beginning to tremble and his voice began to break, feeling more pain than he ever has in a long time, a pain that punctured his heart more than a thousand El Minya spells could possibly ever do.
[Mare] "B-Beatrice you must calm down! While I don't know what exactly this man did to you, we still haven't…
Slowly but surely the facade of the prideful and strong image that Beatrice had maintained throughout the school year and long life as a spirit, was slowly beginning to crumble alongside her [El Minya] spells as both of them slowly started to break down as she became a weeping mess to everyone in the library.
[Beatrice] "Mother...I failed you…."
She said weeping which greatly upset the few that understand what she meant among the confused crowd in the library.
And before [Greed] could attempt to approach the weeping spirit, he received a small tug from below him.
[Ryuze] "Master I believe that it's time we go."
[Greed] "Ryuze? I can't leave Beatrice now, I am the only one who needs to suff-"
[Ryuze] "I am afraid that being here won't change a thing besides escalate the situation and you know this."
[Greed] "But I promised-"
[Greed] "- I understand."
He begrudgingly agreed with a shaky tone, and as they were attempting to leave the library they were suddenly attacked by another barrage of needles from behind his back which disappointingly had the same effect as last time.
[?] "Do you seriously think that you can get away with attacking master!? While you may carry the strong and disgusting scent that Master always has, that doesn't mean I won't stop blasting you to dust with my [Hell's Snipe] for treating my master like trash! Hey, listen to me when I'm speaking jerk…"
[Gluttony] "It's alright Shaula, while we hate this man as much as you do, I'm afraid that we will still need him one day.
[Shaula] "Master?! You can't possibly be saying that? I won't accept that in 400 years, not even in 400 more, no matter how many hugs and head pats you give to Shaula! I just need a bit more time I almost got him, I swear! Let me blow him in smithereens for treating master so horribly and then we can just continue on your so-called self-healing journey with your "Sexy Self Proclaimed Sex-Slave Shaula"!
Asked the questionably titled "Sex-Slave" Shaula in a frantic and alarmed voice.
[Gluttony] "As much as I would love for you to turn into fine sand, I'm afraid they agree that he is necessary for bringing him back, which is why we will eventually have to reach an agreement with him whether we would like to or not.
[Shaula] "But master…"
[Gluttony] "That's an order Shaula."
Hearing him say this, Shaula looked back at her supposed "master" with a serious expression that conflicted her precious happy and cheery facade that she wore before and the new expression was starting to scare even Mare however, after a few seconds she returned back to normal as she dropped her shoulders before letting out a pout as her hands dropped their bright luster that they previously had as she stepped aside to the duo begrudgingly.
[Greed] did not even offer to spare a glance to the upset Shaula that was glaring intensely at the hooded man but instead he continued to stare quietly at the passed out Beatrice who cried until she fell asleep as Mare tried to give her comfort, and while he had seconds thoughts of leaving her in her current state as he was about to do something however with one last determined tug from Ryuze he reluctantly left the library alas.
Mare let out a breath that he didn't know he was holding before quickly realizing that Beatrice and himself included were now alone with the mysterious man and his strange yet powerful sex slave.
[Gluttony] "Whew, that sure was intense wasn't it Mili? Come on Otto you can't help but admit that was scary?"
The man laughed to himself and… no one, he was talking with no one.
However, his companion did not seem to react or to care at least as she instead started to pick up the stray and damaged books off the floor.
[Mare] "U-um excuse me?"
[Shaula] "-huh are you speaking to me number three?"
[Mare] "Umm my name isn't a numb-"
[Shaula] "What do you need number three? If master hasn't ordered Shula to kill you yet, that means he likes ya!"
[Shuala] "I will admit, Shaula didn't expect to ever see you guys again but here you are!"
[Mare] "Did you say that you kill people?"
[Shaula] "Huh? Well yeah when master feels like it, then Shuala will do whatever he wants, even if it's a bit naughty!"
[Gluttony] "Not interested!"
While Mare was not fazed by talking with a killer after all most of the guardians had killed for the prosperity of the "Great Tomb of Nazarick" and, he was quite aware that quite a few of his classmates were not strangers to the idea of killing people, he, however, was worried for the safety of the unconscious Beatrice and himself if he unintentionally annoys them which was why he was already starting to formulate an escape plan for the two if the chance comes.
[Gluttony] "Hey, you're friends with Beako aren't you?"
Something bugged him about how he said Beatrice's name, almost as if he heard it before however whenever he tried thinking of it, he felt a headache starting to form. Not wanting to upset the strangers in fear of them doing something to Beatrice he quickly shook off his concerns for a moment and answered the man.
Upon hearing this the man started to glow a bright smile that threatened to stretch across his face.
[Gluttony] "Great! Does that mean you know my name?!"
He said this as he tilted his slightly in curiosity as Shaula looked on quietly in the side as Mare thought deeply for what may be the correct answer with this man.
[Mare] "Uhh well…"
[Gluttony] Hey do you know my name?"
This time he asked more impatiently as he started to get closer to Mare to his displeasure.
[Mare] "Umm maybe?"
Upon saying this he was suddenly grabbed by Shaula as she quickly held both of his wrists in a manner that he couldn't possibly escape as he quickly started to panic.
[Gluttony] "It's not a hard question, all I want is a yes or no. Hey. Do. You. Know. My. Name?"
Mare was slowly starting to understand the danger of his current situation as he could not possibly protect both himself and the unconscious Beatrice from the potential of a dangerous and quick attack from Shaula, with the burning and broken bookshelves being a measure of how powerful she may be, and that's not accounting of a possible unknown attack from her master as well.
[Gluttony] "Hey. Do. You. Know. My. Name?"
Mare had decided to follow yet another piece of his sister's old advice of always being honest (when he's not in a mission at least) and prayed to Bukubukuchagama-Sama for Beatrice and his own sake.
For a moment there was a deadly silence as the man merely stared at him with a blank expression while Shaula looked curious as Mare felt a small trickle of sweat falling down his face.
[Gluttony] *Sigh* "Let him go Shaula, they say he's speaking the truth."
Shaula in response abruptly let Mare go which as a result made him hit the ground face first.
[Gluttony] "Shaula! You have to be more kind to your classmates!
[Shaula] "Hehe sorry master if you want you can punish Shaula later or if you want right here!'
[Gluttony] "Enough with your perverted fetishes already! We're in a high-school-like scenario and I don't want to blow it once again thanks to you!"
As Mare began to get up from his rather rude awakening, he could not believe how their personalities can shift on a dime as, instead of the frightening and threatening they were earlier, they were now acting as if that moment never existed and switched to a more cheery and rather childish.
Noticing Mare staring at the two, the man gave a sigh as he tried starting a conversation with the dark elf he almost just killed.
[Gluttony] "Sorry about that earlier but I hope that we will be willing to move on from this right?"
[Mare] "...Earlier, if I said yes? Would you have killed me?"
[Gluttony] "O-of course not, it's just that I have terrible memory right now and I just want to make sure that I haven't known you before I lost it for being so clumsy!"
Mare was still not convinced however not wanting to risk antagonizing them he gave a brief nod.
[Mare] "I guess that makes sense…but who are you?"
[Gluttony] "Oh right I believe we haven't had a proper introduction before right?"
The man fidgeted around looking around the room anxiously before bursting into a smile and awkward and unique position with him pointing upwards with one hand and another on his hip which was the final clue that Mare needed to patch together all of his earlier clues and suspicions as he widened his eyes in surprise.
[Gluttony] "My name is Natsu-AGGGGGHHHH!"
Interrupting himself he fell abruptly while hollering in agony even more compared to when he was thrown into a bookshelf.
Shaula was quick to rush to her master's aid as she attempted to offer help before he merely blocked her from trying to.
[Gluttony] "I-I'm fine."
He said as he slowly took deep breaths before attempting to get back which resulted in him almost stumbling back down once again before Shaula caught him and placed one of his arms on her shoulder.
[Gluttony] "My name is [Gluttony], just [Gluttony]."
He said slowly and bitterly in a melancholic tone.
AN- Hey guys long time no see! I sincerely apologize for my inconsistent schedule and the four months with no chapters. I won't make excuses since there are other amazing authors who despite the immense real-life tasks they do daily, can still maintain a consistent schedule with long and extensive chapters and so I apologize for the inconvenience and hope you can forgive me and my inconsistency.
Anyways moving on, the next two chapters will be the final chapter for the prologue which means we can soon start to include some action scenes between the IF! Subarus which I am extremely excited about and so be sure to give suggestions and scenarios that you wish to see in the future!
Anyways I plan to focus on updating Chapter three now that this chapter is finally finished, so the next chapter won't be coming out for a while so feel free to suggest ideas for a possible authority you may like Sloth! Subaru to have in the meantime. (Don't worry this one won't take four months)
Anyways I hope that you have enjoyed the chapter with the new writing style despite my poor grammar skills and in case you have any questions feel free to DM me on FFN or Reddit (King_of_the_Cloud) and I wish you all a very damn well day! Live Strong! -Idkwhyipost
(Don't worry I know that attacking the library would have triggered Shuala Scorpion Mode ;) I have a plan to go more in-depth on that in the future alongside Beatrice and Gluttony bizarre panic attack)
PS-The Font doesn't seem to be working with me today so some parts may have missed some boldness/italic sadly