Arche had been laying on the bed for at least twelve hours now, still hog tied, and on her side. Ninya was hugging onto her like some sort of large stuffed animal. Burrying her face into her chest.
Her eyes were settled though, not on Ninya, but on the figure which was standing in front of the window the moment she had been placed down here. Bags were under her eyes as clearly she didn't sleep whatsoever. It was about six hours in that she noticed his eyes were no longer glowing, but they were clearly open. Though she had this strange feeling that they were no longer gazing out to the sky.
Was he asleep with his eyes open? Or was he conscious?
Feeling the unknown girl nuzzling into her, she looked down at her. She had brown hair, fair skin and a boyish demeanor. Then she froze as she was reading the tier of magic she could cast with her All-Seeing-Eyes. This girl, she was at the peak of the Fifth Tier and her mana alone was far past the normal amount a regular human would ever possess.
How did a girl this young get so much power? Her eyes moved from Ninya and over to the man who was still staring outside. If it was something you could call staring.
His eyes were almost lifeless. As if he had long since joined hands with the abyss that was death.
Confused with Evil Counterparts... Her mind was wondering back to the riddle he had given her. What was he? Could he be a lich of some sort? Or an undead magician? If he was, then how did he get like this? Where was his necrotic tissue or the lack there of any tissue.
"Hmm.." She hummed as a tribute to her curiosity, causing Ninya to stirr against her.
Ninya slowly opened her eyes ever so slightly, catching the pink and tan colors of the sturdy clothes the female she was clinging to wore. Her eyes opened a bit more as she pressed the side of her face into something small and squishy.
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"What is this..." Ninya groaned as she was aching all over from the potion she had consumed the night before. She felt more powerful, but the highness that was about, was now gone.
Sitting up, her eyes traveled down the hog tied female, then back up to her face and groggily raised a brow. "Who... Uh...Who are you?"
"I'd like to ask the same thing," Arche replied sleepily, her eyes were heavy as she hadn't slept a wink.
Ninya turned and looked over at the standing figure which was Jack himself. "He's in his mind again," she muttered quietly before looking back over to Arche.
"In his mind?" Arche lightly tugged at her arm, before groaning in defeat as she couldn't budge.
"Meditation he calls it," Ninya sighed as she was debating of untying this random person. However she didn't know why she was all tied up. Maybe she shouldn't try to untie her?
Yawning involuntarily, she would scoot away from Arche and planted her feet on the cold floor with her back to Arche. Ninya then stood up after pushing herself off the side of the bed and crept on over to Jack, getting onto her tippy toes as she placed her hands on his shoulder to weigh him slightly towards her, before blowing in his ear.
Suddenly his entire body jerked and his eyes ignited like tiny blue flames. It was like she had just lit a bonfire. His eyes darted about the room before narrowing in on Ninya, "Good Morning. I hope you slept well."
"Sore... But I'm okay." She turned her head towards Arche, then back towards Jack. "Why was there a girl in the bed with me, tied up?"
"Heh, funny story. She was spying, invisible, outside in the village."
Ninya's face almost turned a bright red, as she could completely remember everything from last night unlike when people drank alcohol and blacked out. She had total recall.
"She... she saw!?"
Jack nodded as he was trying not to laugh.
"What'd I see!?" Arche mewled as she rolled side to side on the bed.
Ninya turned and stared at her as she moved about on the bed, mewling.
"She was outside while someone was using Observation magic on the area, it was probably someone from the Baharuth Empire. Though I blocked them last night." He snickered quietly before glancing outside towards the window.
Ninya's gaze traveled around the room, slowly processing that the entire house had changed. The architectural rules and aesthetic were completely different. It reminded her of the interior of the Citadel. She paused for a few moments before looking over to him and tilted her head to the side. "Did... Did you do this?"
"Obviously," Jack scoffed before lightly reaching out and subtly pinching her cheeks and caressing her soft skin. While she wasn't as androgynous as Imina, he was getting curious of how the other members of the Swords of Darkness didn't know she was a girl.
That was an interesting thought which he never figured out while they were alive. Were they just that trusting towards their friend? At least they died knowing the truth...
"So... Is she being held prisoner?"
"Hostage...? Like how you held me, Lukrut and Dyne in your Fortress while you had Peter go back to the Guild to report on your presence?"
"Exactly," Jack couldn't help but giggle to himself, "though in this case I gave her friends a bit of a harder quest..." His eyes rested on Arche who's eyes were closing slowly as she was fighting unconsciousness. "To Eliminate the Death Cult that killed our friends, in order to get her back."
Ninya froze hearing him say this. He sicked Arche's friends on Zurrernorn in return for her safe return. "How... How many were there?"
"Counting Arche? Four, just like a typical Adventurer Party. She's a member of a Worker group. I sent them back to the Baharuth Empire unharmed."
"Jack, I've been informed of an intruder in Carne Village. Are my --"
Placing his fingers on his temple and interrupting Momonga, "Good Morning to you too Momonga."
"I told you my name is now Ainz," Momonga claimed his new name, attempting to correct Jack.
"You will always be Momonga, the man who offered me a place in an esteemed Guild as a friend." Jack said with a semi-emotional tone, appealing to sentiment.
For a brief moment, there was silence.
"A group of workers from the Baharuth Empire were investigating the Citadel, and apparently me. I noticed someone watching me using Surveillance magic and blocked them... Then when I came outside, there was a fun-sized surprise."
"So I nabbed the smol one and told them they have to eliminate the Death Cult to get her back."
Momonga laughing as they were messaging each other back and forth. This definitely seemed like one of Jack's attempts at controlling other people. His manipulation of people was either super subtle or extremely blatant depending on the situation and the need for discretion, or the lack of.
Hearing Ninya repeating Arche's name on her lips brought him out of his little messaging trance with Momonga, causing Jack's eyes to lock right onto her again. Only one hand was on her face, caressing her cheek.
It appeared her face as calmed down and was only slightly pink now rather than as red as a cherry.
Feeling someone looking at him again, but this time from a distance, he turned his head to look out the window. His eyes immediately caught the red suit wearing Devil standing on the outer wall.
It was Demiurge.
"Well, don't you know, the Devil Wears a Suit and Tie," his tone of voice imitated that of the song 'The Devil Wears a Suit and Tie,' by Colter Wall.
"Jack?" Ninya looked out the window and froze seeing the figure in the distance. She didn't recognize him, though he was too far for her to even identify him. It just looked like a red stick with black hair, pink skin and a silvery tail. "Is.. That a 'Devil'?"
"Yes. Though more precisely an Arch-Devil. I made sure he can't enter the Village, due to his ability to manipulate people under relative to the mental fortitude of a Platinum ranked adventurer."
The pink tinge on her face quickly disappeared as she'd pale hearing of the being's prowess. Even though it looked so tame standing, perched proper, on the wall. "W-why is it here?"
"You remember Ainz Ooal Gown, from when Carne Village was under attack?"
"Uh-huh... The Guy in the mask."
"The Arch-Devil is one of his servants, one of his top servants. His level is over two hundred."
Ninya was amazed by the power of the single individual who had a Devil, but at the same time it terrified her that one person could control it. Or at least that the devil obeyed. It would only prove how powerful the person was.
"What is Sir Gown?"
"He's an Overlord, the final form of an Elder Lich, considered one of the most powerful Undead."
For a good minute she was silent, from the corner of her eye she could see Arche was sleeping. She then turned her head downward to look at their feet. "Why would he save the Village? Don't the Undead hate the living?"
"He's fond of them," Jack referred to the living as them, as he wasn't amongst the living.
Ninya's brows furrowed at his use of the word 'them' and tilted her head back up to face him. "You said you were an Arch Mage, and while I understand agelessness coming with vast magical power, it's hard to understand why you look a little older than my sister. Now you're referring to the living as them, rather than us..."
"I'm an Arch Mage, it's one of many professions I hold." Jack could see she wasn't slinking away from him. She wanted to hear him out before anything else. "I simply chose to turn my entire being into solidified magical energy. I am classified as sub-Heteromorphic."
Ninya's mind could make sense of the concept, though just not the practicality. From what she could tell though, he wasn't evil. "Then you are...?"
"An Arch Lich Champion, the pinnacle of non-evil Sorcerers who don't use Necromancy as a path to eternal life." He brushed his lower lip with his thumb before glancing over at Arche who was sound asleep now, having given into unconsciousness.
"Champion?" Ninya's voice called him back to her.
"An Arch Lich comes in three forms, Lore Keeper, Guardian and Champion. Champion being a meld of both of the other sub-types."
"Your form is fundamentally different from a Lich, so why are you called an Arch Lich?" Ninya asked as she concluded that the Arch Lich and an Elder Lich were completely different. One used Necrotic energies and the Book of the dead. While the other used some sort of technique to transform the body into magic energy.
"I didn't coin the term." Jack said with a slightly smug looking face, as he didn't take the credit for it.
"Then you aren't the only one?"
Jack shrugged slightly, not sure how many of the players who had chosen the Arch Lich arrived in this world. He could only assume none of them had come into the world yet, or none were online at the time the servers shut down.
"Immortality was a Taboo where I came from."
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