Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Chapter 29: Interlude 2
– Damien –
"How is her condition?" I asked the scientists.
"The Sleeping sickness used on her is a bit different from the rest. From what we found out, it was the prototype of the disease and a stronger version was used for her. We will need around a month to make an antidote for it."
Helena, my main scientist, was not here at the moment so I needed to make do with these people. That is not to say they weren't good enough but were far behind Helena Dantalion, who was gifted a nerfed Mad Doctor Essence by me.
It's been two days since the entire fiasco and the whole Underworld was in turmoil.
Those four Satans got off their butts and started working as their roles.
With a direct 'order' from me in front of the entire Underworld, they had gone all out on the Great King faction.
Everyone was investigated and anyone who was found to have been involved in murders of fellow Pillars, plotting against other Pillar Houses, using the Sleeping Sickness as well as any acts of treachery were all either executed or jailed.
WIth Zekram as a precedent, no one questioned.
They didn't dare.
Not even their family members.
Questioning or raising any kind of voice right now would have been going against the entire Devil Race.
I'll be honest, even I didn't expect Lucifer's name to have this much power in the Underworld right now.
There have been some unwanted consequences of the enthusiasm of these Devils.
"Has the crowd outside the Gremory estate been cleared?" I asked Merlin as we left the place together.
"No. They are not entering the Estate because you were seen to be familiar with them but they are not leaving either. It's not just the Gremory Estate but the same case with every Satans' families as well as their castles. All of them wish to know where you are."
"Sigh. Someone will do something stupid if this continues. You should go and take care of this matter. Actually, take Gretel, Akira and Valerie with you too."
Akira and Valerie would be able to meet Akane and Gasper. They had been worried about them the whole time.
It would do well for them to go and see for themselves.
And while you are there….invite them to a meeting of the Three Factions. Rizevim is going to make some big moves….and with the tools available to him, we all need to be prepared." I ordered.
Euclid could only give me some information about his plans.
Rizevim was keeping everything to himself till the last moment.
He was wary of the spies more than ever as there was a chaos in the Old Satan faction since my reveal, both as Damien Lucifer Asmodeus and the reincarnation of Lucifer.
The latter was still only a rumour to other people but it was spreading at an insane speed everywhere.
It was causing many people to question their allegiance in the Old Satan faction as well.
Knowing him, to prevent that, Rizevim was going to do something big.
"As you order, my King."
I teleported to the next location as Merlin left.
The floating island of Agreas.
The only place where Ageresite, the crystals used to make the Evil Pieces, were found.
King Pieces were merely a fraction of what these Crystals could be used for.
If used properly, these were strong enough to rival the Amrita of the Hindu Pantheon.
I didn't have every memory of Lucifer but I knew that this place was very dear to him.
I don't know why though.
Even then, I didn't want to use it willy nilly.
As for the Ageresite, I can produce it with my Mad Doctor Essence so it was never an issue.
The main objective was to remove this from the reach of the current Government.
The current Devil race was not in danger of going extinct due to low numbers.
What they were however in danger of was the unplanned and uncontrolled increase in number with the Evil Pieces as well as the way they were used.
The worst part was, the Evil Pieces were so deeply ingrained in the society of the devil race that it would have been a massive pain to remove it.
This was the best method.
With this removed, they will be forced to work with what they have.
One of the main reasons the Reincarnated Devils were treated badly was because many saw them as replaceable.
If some of them rebelled, they could always be declared as Stray Devils and they could get a replacement for their Evil Pieces.
Now, though, they will not have that privilege. Because there will be no new Evil Piece sets.
The owners will have to keep their peerage members satisfied and in control to avoid such problems.
Not to mention the decrease in the number of newly Reincarnated Devils will calm down the other factions.
They wouldn't go as far as to attack us due to the show I had put up but they will be reassured that their people will not be reincarnated against their wishes and maybe not now but in a few centuries, it could improve the overall impression of the Devil faction as a whole.
It also removed a dangerous trump card from Ajuka's hand.
We stored the island away in a separate dimension made by the Balance Breaker of the Dimension Lost and then each of us had reinforced the Barrier around the place several times over.
For now, this place is better off left sealed.
- Sirzechs -
He sat with his fellow Satans in the Lucifer's office.
In front of him stood two people.
Helena Dantalion and Charlene Glasya-Labolas.
Both of them had shown extremely high strength during the terrorist attack. Taking down Ultimate Class beings with casual ease.
Falbium had talked to his sister and found out that she was undergoing some secret form of training with Helena as a trial for an experiment.
He just didn't know it was so effective.
On testing, their power levels were similar to Grayfia and Serafall. In fact, Charlene was even stronger in terms of sheer Demonic Power alone. Almost twice as strong too.
Helena had straightaway denied publicising the method or even sharing it, stating it as a secret of the Dantalion House and even Charlene was under a binding contract to not reveal it.
Not that they would force anyone. It would be a catastrophe if these talents were to go to their enemies if forced hard.
They were called here for a different reason.
"I am sorry but I will have to reject your offer. I cannot join your peerage. I have my own research to carry on and my own targets to achieve. I cannot devote my time to other goals." Helena Dantalion said, looking at Ajuka.
Yes. She was invited by Ajuka Beelzebub to become his Queen.
"You can continue your work even as my Queen." He offered.
"I'm sorry but I wish to remain independent." She rejected.
"Sigh, in that case, would you like to work as the Vice Director of the Devil Research and Development?"
"...I am really honoured that you would consider me for such a position but I already have my own Bibliotheca Research and Development organisation. It is affiliated with the Dantalion House and is also funded by several other houses. I am contract bound to not leave it." She answered after some hesitation.
Ajuka let out a sigh. "Well, it was worth a try. By the way, can a corporation be possible between our two organisations? I know that Devil Research and Development is a government organisation but Bibliotheca can be given a semi government status. In return you can get investments from the Government for your projects."
She looked to be in thought. "As long as the contract doesn't violate any of the existing contracts I can think about it."
"Very well. In that case, I will have someone look into the contract." Ajuka replied.
"Okay. I will talk with other associates of mine."
Finally, Falbium addressed them both.
"So, I understand that you will not be divulging the methods behind the training and joining any peerages is out of question as you are the Heiress but you will have to participate in the Rating Games and show off your power."
Charlene looked a bit confused so Falbium explained.
"Right now, the Underworld is in a precarious situation. We lost several High Level Ultimate Class Beings as well as many old Devils were executed or locked up. The Old Satan faction is moving and probably the only reason they haven't launched an attack on us yet is because of the appearance of… Lucifer."
Many were still coping with the fact that the creator of their race was actually back.
"In fact, even the other factions are not attacking us because of the absurd show of power by him and his followers. It's just that… he is not really with us. The only reason he came out was due to Lilith and we are not even sure he will return if a war was to start." Not that any of them had the courage to go and ask him just after all that mess."
"So, we need strong people to showcase their powers to keep the other factions at bay. For this reason, I would like you two to participate in Rating Games."
"Rating Games? I thought they were being shut down for a while due to the disappearance of the Agreas island and the Agerasite Crystals?" Helena asked. "Have they been found already?"
He winced a bit at the question.
The Agreas Island.
It was a topic which had been the reason for their headache for the last two days.
The rebels had teleported the entire island to some other dimension and even Ajuka couldn't find any clues about their location. The search was still on going.
According to the rebels, the island was the cause of all their troubles and they were removing it to prevent such things from happening again.
What a load of bullshit.
They would obviously be trying to create more King Pieces to plan another, bigger rebellion next time.
"The distribution of new Evil Pieces has been stopped. Rating Games will still continue." Ajuka explained.
"Is there any news about the Agreas Island?"
"We are still investigating." Ajuka replied, not answering clearly.
"I see. Umm… can't you ask him for help? He could change other races to devils so… Even the people outside want to see him. He could pacify them easily. If all the Pillars ask him..." Helena left her sentence unfinished.
He shook his head. "He has made it abundantly clear that he doesn't want to intervene in the affairs of the Underworld and we do not wish to disturb him." To be honest, the thought of asking for his help did come to his mind but he held back.
How could they?
Especially not after such a blunder.
His last appearance had already saved the whole Underworld from going into a war as well as the life of his mother. It was already something he didn't know how to repay.
To ask for even more…
They were not even sure if he would even agree to meet them.
"You all know where he is?" Helena asked., recognising his thoughts
He thought for a bit and nodded.
"We do. However we are not to disturb him until he wishes to talk to us himself."
"I see. It's unfortunate."
They discussed a few things and left a few minutes later.
"She really didn't budge." Serafall said.
"We knew it wouldn't be so easy. If she has developed a method to make someone get to such a level, she wouldn't be revealing the secrets so easily. I even had a chat with Lord Dantalion and even he didn't know anything. He was quite surprised himself at the strength of his little sister but the man dotes so much on her that he would never ask her anything she didn't want to answer."
"She did say something about her investors. If we can find who they are, we could get something from them." Ajuka suggested.
"She is one of the foremost researchers in the Underworld. Almost every Pillar House has invested in her in one way or another. And someone who has invested in such a project will not be revealing the details so easily. But yes, there is a chance."
"Did you question the families of the terrorists?" He asked Falbium.
"Yes. Each and everyone of them is being investigated. We have questioned them individually as well as in groups and none of them seem to know of anything. They did say that they had started behaving oddly after the Youkai incident and being captured in Kyoto, which was when the restrictions on them were imposed." Falbium answered.
"It could be…"
"It could be the Old Satan faction…" Serafall suggested.
Yes, it could be, especially knowing what kind of a madman Rizevim Livan Lucifer is and his so-called game against Lucifer.
He was actually one of the biggest suspects of the whole thing but again, there was no way they could accuse him of anything right now.
Zekram and the Great King faction had made a veritable mess of the entire Underworld even with its fall.
The economy was in shambles all of a sudden and while not to the extent it could have been due to Damien's appearance, no house dared to shut down their functioning, afraid to be the next Bael House, the sudden disappearance of so many of the old devils still caused a lot of problems.
These problems were aggravated by the people wanting to know where Lucifer had gone and wanting him to return. It was not only the common Devils but the same was true for many Pillar Houses as well.
Even now, a huge crowd was gathered outside their castles as well as the homes of their families, wanting to know his whereabouts.
"If it's really them, then we might have a way to cooperate with Dami-Lucifer against it. They were at odds and Rizevim gaining such a card against him is not something he would want or allow. We can try to cooperate with him." She suggested.
They had even considered that it might have been his own group which had taken away the Agreas Island but given up on that thought immediately because it didn't make any sense.
First, with Damien's identity, all he needed was to speak and the Underworld would have placed the island outside his doorsteps.
Second, with his ability through which he empowered Rias, he could reproduce the effects of King Pieces beyond anything Ajuka could.
And thirdly, he was Lucifer. He didn't need any Evil Pieces to change others into Devils.
So ultimately, while it was convenient, it couldn't do anything which he already couldn't do on his own.
At this point, they were reminded of the words of Kuroka, the Sage.
'Why would the owner of an ant farm be jealous of the ant queen.'
Back then, they had all laughed it away at the young Nekoshou's fanatical worship of her master or the natural pride and arrogance of a Lucifer but now… looking at the current situation, he was forced to reconsider his thoughts.
Just as he was thinking about these, there was a knock on the door.
The door opened and a staff member came in with a nervous look.
"My Lords, i-it's the aides of Lucifer. They have arrived at the Gremory Estate."
"Who and how many?" He asked, suddenly.
"There are four people. Merlin Ambrosius, Gretel Lucifuge, Akira the Kitsune and a young Dhamphir girl."
"Very well. I will receive them myself." He exchanged a glance with his fellow Satans and answered.
- Zeoticus Gremory -
He looked at the four people in front of him with complex emotions.
The servants of Lucifer.
By now there was no doubt about it.
The Old Satan faction, in their efforts to create a weapon against them, had resurrected the Devil accidentally.
Even if there was some doubt after several of the undeniable evidence and even his ancestor confirming it, it was washed away as he felt the warmth of his wife beside him and remembered the scene when he had brought her back from death, and declared his identity.
It was a scene he doubted he would forget till the end of his life.
They had asked Venelana about what she had felt after dying.
According to her, it was darkness, there was nothing and there was a feeling of falling down continuously. But there she heard a voice, a command and a small light shone in the corner of that darkness, almost similar to the Morning Star and then she was dragged out of that darkness and the next thing she knew, she was there.
It felt a moment to her, almost like a dream but the experience was as real as it could get.
And now the servant's of the same man had come to visit them.
Not to mention their identities.
And Valerie Tepes.
All three of them have some kind of relationship to the members of his household.
"Are you in good health?" His thoughts were broken by Merlin's question. He realised that the question was focused towards Venelana and not him.
"Yes." She bowed. "I will be eternally grateful to Lord Lucifer for his kindness.
"You can thank him on your own, ya know. Just close your eyes, and pray. He will listen. Whether he answers or not is a different thing entirely." Merlin smiled.
The moment of silence stretched longer than he had hoped for and that made him have a premonition.
"Are you serious?" he asked.
"You could always try." Merlin shrugged.
"In that case, I will try." Venelana answered.
"While we cannot assert how much you are welcomed here Mr. Ambrosius, could you tell us why you have decided to visit us at this time?" His mother asked, shifting the topic.
It was something they needed to do at a different time.
"Me? I heard that Sairaorg Bael was living here. The child wanted to become a Satan and Damien took a liking to the boy. In fact even I was quite impressed by his will. I have heard that despite Damien's words, there has been less than positive attitude towards the boy and his family so… I wish to take him as a student."
"You know how I am somewhat known to be a guy who can teach Kings and such…" Merlin scratched his head and he had the urge to throw his shoe at the man's face.
Teach a King?
This guy had taught Arthur Pendragon.
That person alone had killed several Ultimate Class Devils and countless others during his lifetime including a few of his friends.
He took a deep breath and reminded himself of the current identity of the man in front of him.
Right now, he represented the Asmodeus House more than any other full Devil of the Asmodeus house could do because of his Master.
He was still amazed at the fact that Lucifer had managed to recruit someone like him knowing their history with each other.
Merlin continued, not caring about his inner thoughts. "I wish to train the guy because I believe he can bring about a great change."
"Is this the will of your Master?" His mother asked.
"Damien? No. He doesn't have anything to do with it. It's just my own personal wish. Damien just wanted me to come here and calm down the crowd who were making noise outside. He's worried that Rizevim might use this opportunity to incite the people and start a war. Would be a waste when he went through so much effort to stop one just a couple of days ago."
That was a terrifying thought indeed.
"And while I'm at it, I decided to bring the rest with me to meet their family members… ahahaha at least who wanted to meet." he quickly corrected himself at the glare thrown by Gretel Lucifuge.
They looked at the last two members who were standing quietly behind him.
"Take them to meet your peerage members and show them around the house. Grayfia, please accompany them and see if they need anything." He ordered.
Grayfia threw a fleeting glance towards Gretel but agreed quickly.
Merlin also took the chance to look at the silver haired young woman on his side. "Please accompany them and see that they don't get rowdy… I mean it would reflect poorly on Damien if they didn't behave properly." he smiled and added at the end, making her glare harder.
She nonetheless bowed slightly towards everyone and followed.
As they left the room, Merlin let out a breath finally.
"Phew, Gre-chan needs to relax a bit. Always so serious and scary."
"And yet you are not afraid of provoking her." His mother rolled her eyes.
"Hahahaha I enjoy living life on the edge." He laughed.
At the same time, Sirzechs and the rest of the Satans arrived and from the other end, his ancestor did as well.
The two greeted each other.
And the atmosphere in the room completely changed.
"I am here with a warning from my King regarding the current circumstances."
- Serafall -
"Warning?" Sirzechs asked as they narrowed their eyes.
"To explain everything, let's take a bit of a history lesson shall we."
Great. Another lesson.
"Agreas Island held a very important place in Devil Society even before the wizkid over here invented his special chess pieces. Do any of you know why?"
"It was the place where the previous Satans had their labs." Ajuka answered in a monotone.
"Bingo. There are a few more reasons. But let's understand something right now. Agreas Island held the power to overturn the Great War and give the Devil side a chance of victory even against the Father of the Angels and yet… none of the four Satans, even in the desperation of losing their lives, used that method." Merlin said in an ominous tone. "Any guesses?"
"Create an army of King Pieces or similar artifact users? While that would have certainly won them the war, all other Factions would have turned against them at that very moment, fearing such power and wouldn't have stopped till the Devil Race was completely extinct. It was one of the reasons I never created any more of them." Ajuka replied.
"You created? Hahahaha, no dear. You didn't create them. Did you?" Merlin asked, with narrowed eyes.
"Are you saying that I'm lying?"
"I am saying that while they might have certainly come into existence from your hands… you didn't create them. Am I wrong in saying that?" He repeated with a smile.
The two sides exchanged gazes with each other.
"They were created accidentally." Ajuka accepted. "I never recreated any after those."
"Well that's what Damien guessed."
"What exactly are you insinuating here, Merlin?" Sirzechs asked.
"I am saying that while it was for the sake of the Devil race, you all should still have been careful when dealing with things on Agreas. It was something feared by even the four Satans so much so that they had it sealed and all secrets of its whereabouts were kept only to them and the Six Clans of Lucifer, all of whom had died in the Great War. But it seems someone else was able to find them too and to make matters worse, they have found their way into the hands of Rizevim."
"What exactly are you talking about?" Sirzechs asked.
"The details will be explained by Damien himself but for now understand that they were artifacts created by the four Satans based on the Sacred Gears. Sentient artifacts rivalling even the Longinuses. They were called Demonic Arms. But the Satans feared their power, so much so that even if they won the Great War with their power, there wouldn't have been anything left of the world as they would have rampaged and destroyed everything regardless. The artifact you saw on Euclid… it was a mere replica of the weakest among them." He said, looking in Sirzechs' direction.
It was then she remembered about the Romania Incident and the weapon Sirzechs had reported to be in Euclid's possession which elevated his powers a lot.
"And they were…"
"Made from the Crystals of Agreas Island… Agresite."
"So Rizevim can…"
"Assuming he has the island, yes. He could create more of them. He must have the Book of Lucifer so he might have some clues. But even if he couldn't create more, there were already twelve of those and they are in the hands of Rizevim from what we have seen of Euclid. Damien has been trying to find their whereabouts and while he is sure that they are with Rizevim, he doesn't know their exact location. It is something which can and knowing the kind of person Rizevim is, will cause a second Great War." he said with utmost seriousness making the atmosphere in the room suffocating.
Twelve more Longinus level Demonic Sacred Gears… in the hands of Rizevim.
Even the thought of such a thing made the entire Bael debacle seem like a piece of cake.
"Thus… in two weeks' time, my King, Damien Lucifer Asmodeus, has called for a meeting of the leaders of the Three Factions to discuss this matter. I, on behalf of my King, am here to deliver the message." Merlin said.
"A meeting of the Three Factions?"
"Yes. He doesn't want any more wars among the Three Factions and we believe that the current Leaders of the factions don't want the same either. The venue is the 733H Bar, two weeks from now."
- Azazel -
"A Meeting of the Three Faction Leaders?" Shemhazai asked again, making sure.
"Hmm. It seems to be the case."
"Those old fools really did mess with the wrong person. Lilith... Her of all people being kept as a prisoner? I really thought Damien was going to start a massacre back then."
He did the same.
In fact, he had moved a large amount of forces to the borders of the Devil Territories to prevent any invasions during such a time if a war were to start due to that mess.
But the ending was not something he was expecting.
The broadcast showed everything on the scene.
From the appearance of Rizevim to the arrival of Damien along with his subordinates. The show of power which casually took down the entire Old Satan Faction forces in a moment.
He had heard about the power twice before this, once during the Kyoto debacle and the other during the Romania incident and seeing it in action just made it even more intimidating.
And Damien was not the only one who could do so. Even his subordinates were the same.
Had he devised a new spell or even a new system of magic?
Really, even reincarnated, this brother of theirs always left him in awe with his talents.
But even so, how could they even fight such enemies?
They were clearly all stronger than even him, had Longinuses and now even numbers didn't work on them. He shivered at the thought of what would have happened if Father knew of this magic when he was alive.
Maybe only a fraction of them would have been left compared to what they were now.
There was utter chaos among the Grigori, both among the Cadres and the lower Ranks at the appearance of Damien two days ago. Some didn't dare to go out of their houses and returned back to the Grigori Headquarters from all over the world while some wanted to start another war right at that moment but everyone quieted down at the display of power from him and his forces.
Even more so, seeing his reputation and command over the Devil Race even now, with a single appearance was a sight to behold.
It was quite similar to what his father would receive in Heaven if he were to return back right now.
But the surprises didn't stop there.
Those rebels had stolen Agreas Island.
At first, he had laughed at the audacity of the rebels and in schadenfreude. It was about time someone removed their magic stone quarry. But then, realising just what those crazy bastards had in their hands, increased his tensions even more.
Especially considering the newly revealed information.
The King Pieces.
And now Celine came and dropped this invitation.
But maybe this was exactly what they needed
A discussion about how to deal with the large amount of information that had been revealed and what steps to take moving forward.
"Tell him that we will be there." He replied, looking at Celine.
One moment he was enjoying a drink, reminiscing about the old days and another moment, he had to worry about preventing another Great War.
Seriously, screw Zekram Bael.
Maybe he should have had that guy ambushed and killed despite the heavy casualties back during the Great War.
- Sean -
"Seriously, why did the Boss have to send us to this place?" He complained to himself as he walked towards the city in front of him.
"I mean there are very few options when you think carefully about it." The shorty with him shrugged. "Teacher was sent to the current Government with the others due to the chaos going on there. He is obviously the most adept in handling those situations compared to let's say Lady Gretel or even Lady Ingvild. The former is not good at communicating in such situations while the latter would have been sucked into the flow by the people due to pitying them. She is too kind hearted. Miss Celine was sent to the Fallen Angels as an obvious choice. As for this place, among his direct subordinates, it was either you, me, Asia Argento or Meridith Ordinton. The last one is too young and Miss Asia would have been a slap to the face of the Church."
"I don't think the Boss would mind slapping them. If anything, he would have purposely done that and even stood on the side to watch their reaction and then taunt them." he shrugged.
"... and Miss Asia would have the same problem as Lady Ingvild. She is just too kind for her own good."
"Well, I can agree on that. Anyways, having the heir of the Pendragon family guide my way would certainly make things easier."
"I wouldn't count on that. My Father made it quite clear that I wouldn't be allowed back in the family if I followed Merlin against his will. The same was the case for Ley Fey. The Church would be informed about it too. They will know exactly who we are because your face was identified by the ones following Lord Michael during the last meeting too."
"Ah yes. There was that."
By that time they had reached the gates of the city.
"Who goes there?" The guards shouted at them.
"We are messengers." He replied as he walked closer.
"Whose messengers? And whom are you sending the message to?"
"Yes, screw Boss' 'I don't lie' skit. See where that lead us to?" He grumbled as he saw the crowd surrounding them, weapons drawn out towards them. There was another row of priests behind them, readying their spells, all ready to attack at any moment.
"I don't think you should have started with the Boss' name." Little Arthur said as he drew out the Holy Sword Caliburn and took on a stance, covering his back to protect against any surprise attack.
"Oh yeah. I guess it was a point I didn't consider. My bad." He shrugged.
"Hand back the sword. It is the property of the Church. Filth like you who follow the Devil himself don't deserve the honour of wielding such a blade. Do that and we will make your death painless." The one in the front, a guy with a holy sword said, eying Arthur's sword.
The greed in his eyes was clear to see.
Sometimes, he wished he didn't have this kind of Observation Haki.
It also made him understand why the Boss dislikes these kinds of people so much.
While not everyone was like this, a large part of the crowd had similar feelings. More than trying to do something good, they wanted to get the spear for some kind of self interest.
"Well, if this is the way you all treat a Messenger, then I will speak your language as well. So much for diplomacy." He narrowed his eyes and summoned his Sacred Gear.
A holy aura fell on the entire place. He infused his magic into the spear and slammed the stub end of the spear on the ground, sending a shockwave around the place, throwing all of them away from the force of the attack.
His aura released in earnest, pressuring the ones who had just gotten up back to their knees again.
A crater was formed in the place they were standing.
"I have no words to speak to any of you. All I want is to deliver a letter for Archangel Michael to Seraph Ariel, who is stationed here. If that can be done in a peaceful way. I would be more than pleased to do so. But if you people want to use violence…" He used the Spear to take on a stance. "Then I will reply in kind."
The entire crowd was stunned at the appearance of the spear.
Many of them were enraged and wanted to attack them even then but were held back due to his aura.
"There will be no fighting." A voice came from a distance.
He looked around to see a familiar gigantic looking man walking forward with some others.
He was followed by the upcoming exorcist and the so-called Trump Card of Heaven, Dulio Gesualdo.
Behind them were a few other famous names.
Edward Griseldi, Griselda Quarta and a few other names.
They saw his spear and even Arthur's sword and their eyes narrowed. These ones however didn't have greed in their hearts. It was something different.
"You are…" Vasco looked at him.
"My name is Sean Collins and my companion is Arthur Pendragon." he announced, earning several murmurs and surprised looks at the little guy's identity. "We are messengers of our Lord Damien Lucifer, bearing a message for Archangel Michael. We simply wish to hand over the letter to the Seraph stationed here." He continued.
The newcomers except Strada tensed at the name of the Boss too but didn't make any overt moves.
"I see. I will inform Lord Ariel of it." Vasco replied.
"But Cardinal Strada, they have the Holy Sword and the Spear with the Lord's Will with them. The greatest treasures of the Church and they serve him… how can we?"
"That is not on us to decide. It is a decision for Lord Michael. Our work is to inform him. I will convey the news of their arrival to Lady Ariel."
"That won't be necessary." A flash of light descended in front of them as a massive Holy Aura washed over the surroundings.
When the light disappeared, there stood an Angel with ten wings.
Ariel, the angel of nature.
The entire crowd quieted down with the arrival of the Seraph.
The Angel in question however had her gaze occupied by the Spear in his hands.
"I have heard of you. The current wielder of the True Longinus and the reincarnation of the son of Lugh, Cú Chulainn, Ireland's child of light and the strongest wielder of the spear since father himself." She said, causing a massive commotion at his identity.
Although one information was wrong though.
He was third in the list of the Spear's wielders, strength wise speaking but let's not go down that rabbit hole right now.
"And it seems those praises were not an exaggeration either. With the level of power I am sensing from you, anyone except the Great Seraphs won't be a match for you even without Father's Spear. Thank you for holding back on these people."
The crowd backed away a few steps in shock at the revelation.
"For what reason have you come here?"
"Do I have permission to speak in private?"
She looked at him for a moment and then nodded despite the protests of several others.
They were led to a private room.
On reaching there he bowed a little and Arthur followed. "We were tasked by our Master to deliver this letter to Archangel Michael. There has been a certain incident which, if not dealt with properly, might devolve into something much worse… perhaps another Great War even. For this reason, our Master has called upon a meeting of the leaders of the Three Factions. This is a letter detailing the circumstances." He handed over the letter to her.
Her eyes widened at the revelation as she took the letter to peruse, the colour in her face drained slightly and then a look of anger came to her face.
She breathed heavily and controlled her anger before looking at them.
"Very well. I will pass this on to Michael."
"Thank you, Lady Ariel."
She hesitated a moment before looking at him. "May I…?"
"May I touch the Spear once?" She spoke after steeling herself more.
He took a moment to realise her words and then he passed on the spear to her with a smile.
She accepted it with slightly shivering hands as her eyes teared up.
'I see. So this is why he sent me here.' The realisation finally came to Sean.
- Michael -
He looked at the letter in his hands in great contemplation.
Helel calling for a meeting of the leaders of the Three Factions?
He had found out about what had happened in the Underworld almost instantly due to the sheer scale of the thing.
The Devil Net was both a wonderful tool as well as a curse when it came to information regulation.
To think Lilith was still alive.
He could only imagine the fury of his brother at seeing Lilith in such a condition.
And to make matters worse, Rizevim of all people was trying to retrieve her body.
Knowing Helel, he had alerted Heaven to be ready for a possible war if things escalated. The show of power by him and his subordinates had only served to increase his fears but , in the end, his brother had surprised him once more.
The fact that he was here reading a letter and not preparing for a war was already evidence enough of the extent to which his twin brother had changed.
On the very same day Sirzechs had called him to ask about his identity.
He didn't reveal anything directly but he knew that his former identity would assist Damien in his work there so he gave Sirzechs a hint.
The new Satan was smart and caught on to his words.
Thankfully, things were resolved peacefully… well, as peacefully as they get done in the Devil Society.
He sent Ariel to keep an eye on the Church so that they don't do anything foolish at such a sensitive time.
And he was right in doing so because, the next morning, one of his subordinates, the reincarnation of the Irish Demigod and the son of Lugh had appeared outside the Vatican and passed on a letter to Ariel, who was stationed there.
It had caused quite a ruckus in the Vatican when a man walked directly to the main church with the True Longinus in his hands.
The entire upper echelon of the Church had gathered. Thankfully Vasco Strada had recognised him from the bar and hurried forward, diffusing the situation before it spiralled out of control.
Ariel was informed almost immediately and she went ahead to meet him only to receive the letter.
She had been quite emotional when she had handed him the letter.
He could imagine the reason for it though.
He looked at the letter once more.
"What will you be doing, Michael?" Raphael asked.
"Another Great War… There is no way such a thing can be allowed. It was Father's last wish. I will go and attend the meeting. Talk to Azazel and Serafall. Inform them that we will be attending the meeting as well." He ordered Gabriel.
"Who will be accompanying you to the meeting?" Raphael asked.
He thought for a moment and then looked at Uriel, who seemed a bit lost. All of them understood his intentions and nodded.
It was about time he cleared the misunderstandings with Celine as well.
- Satanael -
He was alive.
Lucifer… was alive.
A chill ran down his spine as he tried to imagine the time when he had fought him in the Great War.
He hadn't lasted moments and had to be rescued by Father.
Back then he had understood one thing with certainty.
Apart from Father and Michael, there was no one in the Three Factions who could fight him off.
That realisation made him experience a feeling of powerlessness which had carried on till this day.
The apathetic look in his eyes as he defeated him and stood towering over his injured body. There was now way he could forget that.
It was something which still haunted his dreams.
Lucifer was on a level which normal angels, even Seraphs couldn't hope to ever match.
He was created that way.
Then again, it wasn't anything strange. He was always Father's favourite.
And see where that led him to.
But on that day, he understood another thing.
There was no way he could ever hope to match someone like Lucifer no matter how much effort he put into it.
He needed something more.
He needed help.
And what else was better than the tools made to kill Gods and Satans alike.
The Sacred Gears, specifically the Longinus.
The greatest creations of their Father.
They held a key to make him surpass his limits and reach a level where he could finally get rid of these nightmares.
His pursuit was however not taken in good light by their Father and… he fell. He was cast out of Heaven and he could still remember the look of disappointment on Father's face.
Father had said that he was disappointed that he wouldn't be able to control his envy before casting him out of Heaven.
How was that his fault?
He wouldn't have fallen if he was made the same as Lucifer.
He wasn't allowed that privilege and when he tried to obtain it for himself… this was the result.
That day, he had sworn that he would surpass Lucifer and he would be the one to kill him to show Father that he had made the wrong choice.
But even that was taken away from him when he died along with Father and his fellow Satans.
That said, he still didn't stop his research.
And once more, Azazel had taken it upon himself to oppose him.
But it seems now he finally has a chance once more.
He will prove it to everyone that he was correct and show them that he is also someone who could defeat Father's favourite.
He clenched his fingers as he looked at the lab in front of him.
Yes. He would do that for sure, this time.
He looked in front of himself.
With this, he will surely be able to overcome the gap.
- Rizevim -
"And what makes you think I will trust or even be interested in something you would propose?" The being in front of him said in a hollow voice.
"You might not trust me but you will definitely be interested in what I want."
"Oh! And what exactly do you want?"
"A war. I wish for a war between the Three Factions. One that unlike the Great War won't just stop at the death of their leaders but will engulf it till none of them is left. You on the other hand will not only be able to get rid of all the annoyances from the Underworld and get a better share over the Underworld but also be able to get the Abrahamic Souls which will have nowhere to go to after Heaven is destroyed. With the new influx of souls, you can surely rise beyond the combined powers of your brothers."
"Hold your tongue, Devil. Do not go to places which you shouldn't. Do you think I'm afraid of those two buffoons? Or even those abominations who currently call themselves Satans? Do you think your words will provoke me into starting a war to clean up after you?"
"I never said you did." he rolled his eyes before replying. "But you won't mind them being wiped out anyways. Especially since my Father is back now. And you will never be starting any war. I have more than enough means to wipe out all Three factions. All you need to do is to back me up." He smiled as he then went forward and explained his plans.
To think Damien was hiding such a secret.
He had laughed the entire day at the revelation.
And a reincarnation of Father.
Project Genesis had created something more than he was expecting.
Something he had only dreamed of but never knew he could achieve.
A chance to play a game against his father, at his best.
Not his best.
He was beyond his best.
Even the advantage of power which he had over him previously was gone.
This time, the stakes were real… and he loved every moment of it.
That's why he needed to put in just that much effort to win.
Father had somehow raised some servants who were able to collectively hold him back or even finish him off.
He didn't know how but as expected of the one man he had looked up to.
That said, this version of Father was… a bit new.
Probably hadn't assimilated all his memories yet.
So, he needed to take his time and prepare.
Or he might just end up like poor Zekram.
The fool who thought that just because he was given the Rank of Great King, he was the actual King of the Underworld.
He had no idea that the Sleeping Sickness was artificial or he would have torn him apart the moment he had retrieved his Mother.
But Father played the whole Underworld on the palm of his hands.
To think he would have spies in his own lab to be able to pull something like that off.
There was no shred of doubt in his mind about his identity.
It proved that although he didn't have all his memories, he still had the mind of 'The Devil'.
And to play against the Devil for his title, he couldn't afford to slack off.
"This is only the first part of the plan." he explained to the being in front of him.
- Venelana -
She finally retired for the day.
"Are you alright?" Zeo asked again. He had been overly worried about her since… since that incident.
Even now, it was strange to think about it.
Back then, her mind was still in a state of confusion and she couldn't understand what was happening so she wasn't able to thank him properly but hearing what he had done… how he had saved her family from breaking apart. She was thankful to the creator of their race.
"Yes. I was just thinking of the thing Merlin had told us this morning."
"About praying to him?" He asked.
She nodded in agreement. "I keep recalling that."
"I don't remember him ever having that power before… then again, this version of Lucifer is a lot different from what we knew of him. What do you think?"
"Well… there is only one way to know." She closed her eyes and held her hands together… and for the first time in her life, she did something which she didn't think she would ever do.
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Finally, the Project Regicide Arc is completed.
Zekram is dead.
Everyone knows about Damien being alive and reincarnated.
We will be entering the next arc soon.
I will be taking a month to plan the new arc and return back to my usual schedule for one chapter every alternate week for this story after that.
It will also help me refresh my mind.
Things are finally becoming interesting.
Other factions and Pantheons will be joining the fray as 'The Devil' is revealed.
What happens next… we will have to wait and see.
Enjoy the next chapter.
Good Day, Peace Out.