Re-Estize Throne Room

"Firstly, I welcome you to the Capital of Re-Estize, I hope you have enjoyed your stay," King Ramposa said with a rigid breath. He knew that the time that he had left as the monarch of the Re-Estize kingdom was slowly dwindling. That's why he had steeled himself to resolve the various problems that the kingdom was facing. And the magic caster that was standing in front of him was one of the only options that he had left.

"Thank you, your highness, the Chief Warrior has been kind enough to show me parts of the city, I am impressed with how beautiful it is, you must be proud," Ainz courteously commented.

The mere mention of Gazef agitated the crowd of nobles that stood at the throne room's side.

"I certainly am," Ramposa lied, "Speaking of the Chief Warrior, I heard that you helped him fend off some of the Slane Theocracy's troops." That mere fact was enough to let Ramposa know that Ainz was powerful beyond belief. He remembered the time when he encountered one of their Scriptures during his glory days, the aura that they excluded was enough to dishearten most of the soldiers around him. It was beyond lucky that he managed to escape unharmed.

"That is correct your highness, I spotted Gazef fighting them and decided to assist him."

"Not just any troops, your Highness, the Sunlight Scripture," Gazef said from his position at the King's side.

Ramposa blinked once, then turned to Ainz."Such a great deed cannot go unrewarded, you have done this Kingdom a great favor, who knows what they would've done if left unchecked." He knew that the theocracy preferred to stay behind the scenes, that's why Ramposa was worried, 'Why on earth were they doing on the kingdom's grounds?'

"I only helped him because it was the right thing to do," Ainz quoted one of his dearest friends, " there is no way I'd let someone as honorable as the Chief Warrior perish during battle."

Something about Ainz didn't sit right with Count Lytton. 'How could the king congratulate this excuse of a mage for something he likely didn't do? Fighting the forces of the theocracy and coming out on top is something even his personal soldiers would struggle with,' The Count thought

"He's probably working with the Empire, and if he is strong enough to beat an entire Scripture, how come we've never heard of him before?" Lytton said, he would do anything to sink the robed mage's credibility, he couldn't allow him to join the royal faction. "Also, Sir Ainz, what exactly were you doing when you encountered the Chief Warrior? It seems rather convenient that you appeared when he was in dire need."

Many of the surrounding nobles nodded their heads. Count Lytton wasn't exactly liked by many of the nobles, but what he said made sense. Someone as strong as Ainz -if what the Chief Warrior said was true- could become a threat to them sooner or later.

Ramposa raised his eyebrow.

Ainz decided to rely on the same excuse he had given to Gazef, "You see my daughter and I have just recently arrived on this continent as our previous home was destroyed during a large-scale assault on the city that we were living in." Ainz clenched his fist in feigned anger, "This forced my daughter and I to flee. That's actually how we ended up here, in the Re-Estize kingdom."

Count Lytton furrowed his brow. "...I see, you have my utmost condolences."

"It's fine, we cannot always dwell on the past, we must move forward... eventually..." Ainz said with sorrow. Of course, he was not referring to this made-up excuse, but the abandonment of his dearest friends. They chose to return to their real lives instead of staying with him, and he knew that he couldn't blame them for it. Some of them did have a family to take care of. But that didn't take away from the deep pain that he felt.

Ainz turned his head in Lytton's direction, "To answer your 2nd question, you are correct. It was dumb luck that I managed to find the Chief Warrior when I did. I was actually just searching for my daughter," He turned his head to Melina, "She and I had gotten separated earlier when we encountered a strong beast in the Forest of Tob."

Ramposa nodded his head in understanding, "While I fully trust the words of the Chief Warrior, I am sure some of us have doubts about your power, after all, facing up against the theocracy is no easy feat. Would it be alright to ask for a demonstration?"

Melina had been quiet for the duration of the whole conversation, but that didn't mean that she wasn't listening. 'Are they questioning my lord's power? Outlandish!'

The Pleiade decided to [Message] her master, "[Lord Ainz, I'd be glad to show them the power of Nazarick, all you have to do is to give me the green light. No one should ever doubt the power of a Supreme Being!]"

"[WHAT NO!]," Ainz cleared his throat, "[No, that won't be necessary, and I'd also have my doubts if I were in their place]."

One of the many nobles in the room decided to speak up "I doubt he would be able to cast anything impressive, your Majesty. Mages are but cowards who hide in the backlines, away from any actual combat."

Ainz decided to ignore the noble's question, "Of course, your Highness, what would you like to see?"

"Show me the power of a man who can defeat the soldiers of the Slane Theocracy!" Exclaimed a relatively short man who was currently seated right next to King Ramposa. His blonde hair mirrored the golden edges of the throne that he was sitting on.

"Very well," Ainz turned towards the room's windows, "Bear witness to the true power of a magic caster!" Ainz raised his hands. 'But not really,' his inner voice thought. It was best to keep his true abilities hidden for the moment.

"[Control Weather]!"

The once bright and sunny sky quickly turned dark and grey. The cotton-white clouds outside turned blacker than pitch and started to pour down an ocean of rain, which started to bang against the crystal windows of the throne room. The warm wind was quick to follow suit, going from a calm breeze to a violent draft of air.

A couple of the nobles gasped in surprise, though not every one of them was impressed.

"Nothing but a simple parlor trick, do you honestly mean to surprise us with such a pathetic excuse for magic?" A minor noble in the back exclaimed.

Ainz's invisible brow twitched, 'That was a 6th tier spell?! Sure, it might not be instrumental in combat, but it should be damn impressive for the people of this world!' he sighed inwardly, 'I guess I'll have to try something different. Let's see...'

"[Teleportation]!"

"Is this satisfactory enough?" Ainz asked, now behind the inquisitive noble, his concealed crimson eyes staring deep into his soul. At least that's how Viscount Roster felt. He had never been as terrified in his entire life as he had been now. He heightened his stare to meet the masked caster's gaze. He felt like a child looking up at an impossibly strong monster. That's it. Monster, there was no better word that Roster could come up with to describe Ainz Ooal Gown.

He quickly began to hyperventilate. He tried to look away, to find something to distract himself with, but alas, everything he tried was in vain. His body refused to move, to look away from the masked man's soul-devouring stare. It was as if he was single-handedly paralyzed by the aura that this 'Ainz Ooal Gown' was emitting. But suddenly, the utter despair he felt disappeared as if it was never there.

'It's ironic how they laughed at a 6th tier spell but were amazed by a 5th tier one, but what can you expect from ignorant nobles such as these.'

"Has my little presentation been satisfactory enough?" Ainz took the crowd's silence as an answer.

Ainz turned back towards the king, "I have many other spells under my repertoire if you wish to see them, your highness."

Ramposa shook his head "No, that won't be necessary, I am sure that you are as powerful as Gazef said." Ramposa looked around, some of the nobles had the word 'stress' written all over their faces, especially the Viscount that Ainz had teleported behind of, "Now let's move on to the topic at hand, I would like to know what you would wish as a reward."

Many of the nobles voiced their complaints the moment Ramposa mentioned a reward.

"But your Highness! There is no need to reward someone such as him, he was only doing what is expected, assisting the same kingdom in which one is standing in, such a simple thing shouldn't be compensated! It should be expected!" Was the general consensus of all but one Noble.

"I for one think it's a good idea,"

The crowd turned to face Marquis Raeven, who reacted with a shrug.

"I doubt any soldier we have would be able to fight the Theocracy's angels and come out victorious. Such actions deserve to be rewarded, it's only fair. Or do you mean to say that all of you could go against the Slane Theocracy?"

The short man sighed, "Marquis Raeven is right, Sir Gown, what would you like as your reward for your courageous actions?"

Ainz brought up his hand to his mask-covered chin just as the Nobles went into an uproar of protestations.

"Prince Zanac has spoken!" The sharp voice of Raeven cut through the crowd, silencing most of the grumbling Nobles. "Please, proceed, Sir Gown."

'I have no need for information at the moment, and even if I did, I could always send a myriad of summons to gather up any knowledge that I may require,' Ainz pondered his options, but eventually, he came to a pretty clear conclusion.

"Would it be too much to ask if I was allowed to reside here in the castle for the moment? As I mentioned before, my daughter and I have been traveling for a while and we currently have nowhere to stay."

Ramposa cocked his head, "Is that all?"

"Indeed, there is not much that I currently require apart from that."

"Very well. Gazef, let me assign you one last task before you can go rest; please take Lord Gown and his daughter to their new quarters, he may pick any empty room in the living sector. Also, make sure to inform the guards of his stay here, we don't want any misunderstandings to happen, after all."

The Chief Warrior bowed and stepped down from the dais, "Of course, your Majesty. Please come with me, Sir Ainz, Lady Melina."

The Nazarick duo nodded and started to follow Gazef out of the room, "It's been a pleasure speaking to you, your Majesty. Ah, I also forgot to give this to you, think of it as a gesture of goodwill on my part, as thanks for letting me stay here in your home." Ainz reached under his robes, opened his inventory, and pulled out a pristine bottle of wine, "This specific brand could only be found in my home region, at least before it was destroyed. I cannot think of anything better to endow upon you, your royal highness."

Ramposa's secretary stepped down from the dais, just like Gazef had previously done, and reached to grab the bottle from Ainz, who gently placed it in the secretary's hands, "I guarantee you that you'll enjoy it."

Ramposa mentioned to his secretary to take the wine bottle to his personal quarters, "I am eternally grateful that you are willing to give me a vestige of your country. Be assured that it'll be put to good use,"

Ainz nodded, "I am sure that it will, anyhow, I don't want to take up more of your precious time, so we'll be taking our leave." The doors that separated the throne room from the rest of the castle proceeded to close, with Ainz, Melina, and Gazef on the other side.

...

"Now, I am sure you all have your questions, but one at a time." The King said after they left.

One of the Six Great Nobles raised their hand.

"Yes, Margrave Urovana?"

Urovana leaned forwards and placed all of his weight on his grandiose staff, "I believe we should recruit him into the Kingdom's army, if we do so we might finally beat the empire in the early war. If we do that we would be able to move in and secure more territory from them. We must take advantage of the situation that is being presented before us."

Margrave Urovana was the oldest among the six great nobles. He was almost as old as the king himself. He used to be a valiant knight that fought side by side with Ramopsa, his ferociousness in combat is what earned him the title of; The Crown's Enforcer. Whilst he could no longer fight the same way that he used to in his younger years, he was more than capable of being useful, as his intellect was nothing to laugh at.

Another of the nobles chimed in, shooting a nasty look at the Margrave. "We don't need a magic caster, we have survived the yearly onslaught the empire has presented us with thus far. There is no reason why we should recruit someone such as him; I say we are better off killing him!"

Marquis Raeven responded to the noble before Ramposa or Zannac had the opportunity to. "Don't be foolish, Urovana is right. If we manage to get him on our side then we would be in possession of a mage that may be able to rival Fluder Paraydne. We cannot lose such an opportunity!"

Marquis Raeven wasn't a loyalist, but he wasn't a fool either. He knew a good opportunity when he saw one. He knew what the Empire was doing: they were dwindling down the kingdom's numbers little by little in an effort to weaken them enough, and then when Re-Estize could no longer rely on her armies, they'd swiftly take over the kingdom. If that happened, his way of life would be threatened, and he would have to find a new home for himself and his son, that is if he wasn't executed first.

"Marquis Raeven is right, we have been presented too good of an opportunity, we must make the best of it," Zannac said.

The royal faction nodded in agreement.


Outside the Throne Room

"Well, what did you think of his majesty?" Gazef asked.

Ainz brought up his covered-up hand to his chin, "Do you want my real opinion?"

Gazef nodded.

"Well, it looks like the nobles hold the reigns of the conversation. I doubt the king would've had his way if it weren't for the few nobles that spoke up in his favor. As you said, he may have a kind heart, but what use does that have if isn't backed up with strength and authority?"

Stronoff sighed, "You're right, but his majesty wasn't always like this," he looked around to see if anyone was listening in, "He used to be very valiant and courageous, never giving ground to the Noble faction and always doing what was right. But that all changed about 7 years ago when the late queen was assassinated. After that, the king fell into a deep depression. The Royal faction tried to keep the Noble faction at bay, but since the king hadn't left his room in about a year there wasn't much they could do. He eventually recovered, but the damage had already been done. And that's how we've ended up in this situation, this nation is bound to fall if things stay this way."

"I recommend that you don't worry, Gazef. I foresee great change coming the kingdom's way." Ainz spoke up.

"I sure hope so. Anyways, it looks like we've arrived,"

Gazef opened the door of one of the rooms, "This is where you'll be staying,"

Ainz peered his head inside the room and walked toward the window right next to his bed. His masked gaze was met by the cloudy sky above, "I should probably dispel that, shouldn't I?" The clouds above started to dissipate with a flick of Ainz's finger, "Much better, nature's at its finest when one can appreciate its beauty without hindrance."

"Anyhow, is there anything else you need assistance with?"

Ainz turned his attention to Gazef, "No, but thank you for showing us around the castle."

"Please, it's the least I could do for the one that saved my life. But if there's nothing else I can help you with then I should make my way back to his majesty's side. Should I call a maid over before I go?"

"That won't be necessary."

"Very well, then I bid you goodbye, both of you," Gazef bowed before exiting the room.

...

"[Anti-Information Magic Wall], [Counter Detect], [Region Petrification]," The door hinges that separated Ainz's room from the rest of the castle turned into an obsidian-like stone the moment the Overlord finished his casting.

"Good, now, show yourselves," Ainz commanded, taking a seat on an obsidian throne created by his grandiose magic.

Five kneeling shadows manifested in front of him, showing their respect to their eternal master.

"Tell me, have you found anything of interest?" Ainz asked with curiosity. It had only been a couple of hours since their mission began, but he knew the efficiency of Shadow Demons. Even in Yggdrasil, they were Ainz's preferred method of scouting, there was also the bonus that they were part of Nazarick's POP-Spawn system, making them easily expendable.

"Yes, Lord Ainz, we have done as you have asked and gathered a list of all the highest level beings inside this city. We used [Aura Sonar] and [Discern Enemy] to identify these beings. The list totals; 1 Undead, 1 being of an undetermined race, and 10 Humans."

'Undead, unidentified? Interesting...'

"As for the average citizen, they pose no threat, as most of them are level 5 or below."

'That's rather disappointing, I would've thought that the people here were at a higher level, after all, this is the capital city of Re-Estize.'

"Six of these 12 beings belong to a group that goes by the name of Six Arms, the security department of a criminal organization called Eight Fingers. Zero, the ringleader is LVL 30, Edström, a woman of tanned complexion is LVL 28, Peshurian, an Urumi user is LVL 27, Succulent a human of no renown is LVL 24, Malmvist, a rapier user is LVL 22, and Davernoch, an Elder Lich, is LVL 23."

'A criminal organization? I can't say I'm surprised, there is bound to be at least some corruption wherever you go. -Wait, Didn't Gazef mention Eight Fingers before? It might be a good idea to keep an eye on them. I am also curious as to why they'd allow an Elder Lich among their ranks. I guess that can wait until later.'

"Five of the remaining beings belong to an Adamantite class adventurer party called Blue Rose, one of the only two Adamantite class parties in the entire kingdom. At the highest LVL, we have a woman of short stature who goes by the name Evileye, she is LVL 52, after that, we have Lakyus the party's leader at LVL 31, Gagaran at LVL 29, Tia at LVL 26, and Tina at LVL 26."

'A level 52!? Whilst not strong enough to face me or the Guardians, she's a higher level than 3 of the Pleiades!' Ainz started to panic, at least before his [Emotional Supressor] managed to kick in. 'I'll probably meet her when Demiurge's plan comes to fruition, still, it might not be such a bad idea to have her monitored.'

"And last but not least is Gazef Stronoff at LVL 31,"

'That I did expect.'

"Those are all the "high level" beings inside this city, my Lord. We can expand our range if you so wish."

"That won't be necessary, at least not for now. Our main goal is the capital, the surrounding cities can wait. Have you managed to glimpse into the skills and combat abilities of the people on this list?"

"No, my Lord. We only managed to get information regarding their levels and weapons."

"Which of these 12 individuals is part of this 'undetermined race'?"

"Evileye of Blue Rose. We believe she might be using an item that prevents us from determining exactly what race she belongs to,"

"If we were to receive some assistance I am sure we'd find out everything about her," One of the shadows to the right continued,

'This 'Evileye' is just full of surprises isn't she?' Ainz said to himself.

"Hmm, before that, find out what exactly she is using to keep her identity a secret. I'll enact the best method of action after that." Ainz commanded.

'Let's think logically, there would be no need to hide her race if she were human so that makes me think she might be either a demi-human or a heteromorph. Maybe she is using something akin to [False Data], she might even be a higher level,' Ainz started to spiral into an abyss of questions, that is until he was brought back to reality by his summons.

"Do you wish for us to gather some more information on her, my Lord?"

Ainz pondered for a moment, "Just find out what she is using to keep her identity a secret. If you are unable to do that [Message] Demiurge, he'll know what to do."

Ainz thought for a moment before giving the Shadow Demons their next order, "Return to the shadows of these people, once you do, I want you to study their behavior patterns, combat abilities, and skills. Two of you will stay with the adventurer party whilst the rest will monitor Six Arms. After that's done return to Nazarick and give Albedo a written report about what you have learned."

"What about the Chief Warrior, my Lord?"

"Do not worry about him, he's already being monitored."

"Very well then. We shall begin immediately." The five shadows tried to leave but were stopped by their master's Anti-divination barriers.

"Ah, forgive me, [Dispel]. You may go now."

The shadows proceeded to disperse into different directions, some exited via the window, whilst some left through the door's floor clearance.

Ainz, in all his regal glory, stood up from his obsidian throne, "Now, Melina Theta."

The girl who had been quietly standing off to the sides quickly raised her head in anticipation, "What is it that you need, my Lord?"

"Would you care to join me for a walk around our temporary abode?"

Melina mentally sighed thinking that she had done something that displeased her master, "It would be an honor Lord Ainz." She said with a beaming smile.


Underground Tunnels Below Re-Estize's Graveyard

Khajiit's eyes nearly bulged out of his head the moment he arrived at the capital's mausoleum. Everywhere he looked he saw undead that he had only heard of in the legends his mother told him when he was little. Panic flooded his mind, 'Should I run away? No, that'll never work, they'd kill me the moment I try to leave.' Khajiit fought his animalistic instinct to flee with all his might, with minimal success. He pressed his back on the backside of the former member of the Black Scripture, who was faring no better.

'What the fuck! Holy shit!' Though she had slain tens if not hundreds of adventures the only thing Clementine could do was grip her stilettos with all her might, hoping that she didn't have to use them. She was just as terrified of her surroundings as Khajiit. Clementine darted her eyes left and right faster than the average human could see, hoping that the beings around her wouldn't attack her.

The room was filled with a thick miasma of Negative Energy. The heavy scent of death penetrated the noses of the two newcomers, filling them with an insurmountable level of dread. Jaldabaoth chuckled, as he sensed the fear inside them, "What do you think Khajiit Dale Badantel, Wind Strider? I'd say our little friends here are more than enough to take over this city."

The Archdevil pointed at the five atrocities that guarded the room.

Clementine flinched at the mention of the title, 'What the hell?! How does he know of my affiliation to the theocracy?!' Clementine mentally sighed, 'I guess that I shouldn't be surprised after all the shit he's surprised us with.' Nothing mattered anymore, she knew that her life had been handed over to the Archdevil the moment he showed up. His monstrous aura alone was enough to tell her that she didn't stand a chance against him.

"H-How did you manage to gather so many Death Knights in one place?! That shouldn't be possible!" The wannabe Lich asked with innate fear.

"A weak human such as yourself shouldn't worry about things like that, plus, getting a hold of a couple of Death Knights is but a trifle for someone such as I. The only thing that matters is that these kind gentlemen will assist you with the assault you'll launch here in the capital. You'll also have the help of Suplica, he's a Black Lich. Suplica will help you by supporting the lower-level troops with Negative Energy."

"What is it?" Jaldabaoth knew that Khajiit had more questions thanks to the way he furrowed his eyebrows.

Steeling his resolve, Khajiit slowly opened his mouth to speak, "Why us?"

Jaldabaoth cocked his head in confusion.

"W-Why do you need our help? It looks like you have everything in order, there is no need for you to implement us into your plan."

Suplica decided to join in on the conversation, "Everyone has their place in the Supr- in Lord Jaldabaoth's 10,000-year plan. You will do what is asked of you with no questions asked, the both of you. After all, is this not what you wanted, Khajiit? To finally become an Elder Lich? You should be happy that you're being presented with such a grand opportunity!"

"What about meeee? What do I get from participating in your grand scheme? It's a bit unfair to give this old fart his life-long dream whilst leaving me with nothing," Clementine pouted, putting on a facade that hid the insurmountable level of dread that resided in her very soul.

"It seems you have regained your previous attitude, that's good. But you're right, I believe that you're being chased by your previous comrades, no? Let me offer you asylum, once you are under my care nothing will be able to touch you. Not even the very gods you worship would stand a chance against me." Jaldabaoth announced with an impossible amount of confidence.

Clementine knew the strength of the Black Scripture, one of the most powerful groups in the New World. She doomed herself the moment she betrayed them, she, of course, knew that. But she didn't really care what they'd do to her once they caught her. She just wanted to cause a little mayhem, and those damned Cardinals were always on top of her, berating her about everything she did.

"I'm being chased by quite a strooong group, are you sure that you'll be able to uphold your promise, mister?"

Khajiit snickered, "Have you not looked around woman?! He is using Death Knights as little more than fodder, if he can't protect you, no one can!"

"He's right, and I always keep my promises. By the way, it's fine if you don't accept, you're just as expendable as these five," Jaldabaoth signaled to the Death Knights, who just stared at Clementine with their soulless eyes, "But I wouldn't complain if you decided to join in, there is bound to be some chaos."

Wind Strider grinned, "Well shit, why didn't you start with that? Count me in,"

"Perfect, the more the merrier. By the way, would you be kind enough to hand me that little relic that you're holding? It seems to have piqued my interest."

Clementine flinched, "Awww, come on. It was reallllly hard to get a hold of it."

"Don't make me ask again," The Demon's metallic appendage whiplashed against the floor, causing massive damage to the area of impact, "I just want to take a look at it."

"Fineee," Clementine steadily approached Jaldabaoth, who just stood as still as a statue.

She extended her quivering hand towards the Archdevil, who gently took the item and held it up to his face, "[All Appraisal Magic Item]. Tell me, what do you know about this artifact?" Jaldabaoth asked.

"Well, uhh, It has the ability to hold high-tier magic? Oh! It also drives the user crazy if it is removed from their head," Clementine mentioned the last fact with a peculiar amount of glee.

"Hmm, you are correct, but it isn't able to cast high-tier magic, only mid-tier."

"No... It's able to cast 7th tier magic, the Cardinals were sure to engrave that information on us. Maybe that little spell you used was wrong."

Jaldabaoth chuckled, "If it's only able to hold magic of the 7th tier then it shouldn't be considered an item of big importance. Oh, that's right, I keep forgetting, the rules of this world are rather different," He said that last part to himself.

Khajiit nearly fainted from the Archdevil's casual comment, 'Does he think 7th tier magic is mediocre?! Is he insane?! Just how strong is he!? I was right, there is no way that I'll manage to live if I try to make a run for it. Maybe if I contact the rest of Zurrernorn we might stand a chance against this monster! No, don't be an idiot, he'd kill us all in an instant...'

"Now, are there any other questions?" Jaldabaoth asked with a hint of aggression in his voice.

The 2 humans shook their heads, "Good, then let us prepare for the carnage that is to come!" the blue mask Jaldabaoth wore modeled the same devilish grin that he wore underneath.