1315 First Direct Contac
If the Western Front plan was successful, the Red Mist should have already spilled over the ridge of the continent and spread through the territory of the humans.
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This meant that the Birth Tower in the great rupture was no longer a secret. No matter how slow the opponent was, they would have reacted already. So why was Hackzord still not doing anything? Could it be that the humans were so weak that he could face them all by himself?
However, when she thought about it, Valkries found it unlikely. If their enemy were as frail as that, Ursrook wouldn't have been defeated on the Fertile Plains.
She knew very clearly that having been separated from reality for too long, it had caused her to lose her ability to judge the current situation.
This feeling made the Nightmare Lord feel extremely uneasy.
There was also that human…
She looked over to the other side of the battle ring and saw that Roland was standing beside two females, showing much amusement and interest in the competition.
Damn him! Didn't he have better things to do?
If he knew how a way out, then he might just be her only chance—he was definitely the one taking the legacies and knowledge of humans out of this world; he must have some sort of passage to communicate with the outside world.
As long as he left the Realm of Mind, she would have a chance to grab that opportunity, after all, in the King's Presiding Holy See, she had often sensed the King's communication with the territory. It was because she had such an ability that she dared to follow the fluctuations of the legacy shard's power and enter the Realm of Mind to find Roland's trail.
Yet, he had always remained active in this world and there was absolutely not a moment when he could have done anything.
Could it be that human monarchs have so much free time that they still didn't need to do anything to manage their kingdoms' matters even after several months? They would rather waste their time on a meaningless Martial Arts Contest than spend time reading a few more books. The only explanation was that the demons' frontline was not giving the humans enough pressure.
So this is still all Hackzord's fault!
In the midst of her mood swings, Valkries suddenly noticed Roland leaving the two females and walking to a corner by himself. Standing there was a hooded female as though she had been intentionally waiting for him.
Valkries pretended to casually walk out of the crowd, but her eyes never left Roland.
They discussed a few words before the female pointed in the direction of the exit. Roland appeared a little hesitant but nodded in the end.
Had the Association noticed something?
Valkries had originally decided to stop once and for all, but for some reason she felt a familiar aura from the female. This odd feeling prompted her to walk a few steps closer, so as to sneak at peek at them from a closer distance.
Just with this one glance, Valkries felt all her hair stand—under the dim light, she saw a face similar to to that of Heathtalese, or… Lan, from the Martialist Association!
Could it be that Transformer had always been hidden in this world?
And the reason that Roland could appear as a male in this world was also because of her?
This news was too shocking. Valkries could no longer hold back the impulse in her heart and quickly followed them.
Roland and the person that Valkries suspected to be Transformer didn't walk in the direction of the arena's exterior after passing through the exit passageway; instead, they turned and entered an underground parking lot. The Nightmare Lord tried to make her footsteps as light as possible and kept a fair distance between them until they entered a civil air defense passageway.
As Valkries tailed after them, she discovered that the passageway was only a bit over ten meters long and didn't have any forks at all. On the other end of the passage was a sealed cement wall. There was even a "No Entry. Construction Incomplete" warning sign hung up on the wall. Even though it was a dead end, the two had vanished.
Oh no, it's a trap!
Valkries reacted instantly but it was already too late.
Before she could turn and retreat, Roland was already calmly standing behind her, blocking her only route of escape. Standing beside him were several females. From how they used their abilities, which was polar opposite to martial artists, Valkries didn't even need luck to guess.
Unquestionably, the females standing beside him were witches.
She finally realized where that feeling of familiarity came from. That was the miniscule difference between magic power and natural ability. If witches could enter the Realm of the Mind as well as possess their original strength at the same time, then the exposure of her identity would have occurred sooner or later.
After all, Roland could surreptitiously conceal this many people to set up an ambush. That meant infiltrating her surroundings and observing her would be trivial—the reason was easy to understand if one thought about it. She focused all of her disguise on her superficial interactions. But against witches who had uncanny abilities, her guise would have been a joke. It was likely that her movements had already been seen through by the witches in the past four months.
"We meet once more, Miss Valkries," Roland said serenely.
Valkries didn't respond.
Saying anything at this time would only bring humiliation to herself.
Even if she still didn't understand how he could get the witches to enter this realm, it was no longer important.
He had intentionally set an ambush in this secluded place. His goal was self-evident.
The only thing she could do now was die in battle.
The Nightmare Lord summoned all the magic power in her body and slightly leaned her body forward. In this situation where she was fighting against a group of witches without a magic stone or Magic Slayer power, she didn't even consider the possibility of winning. It was impossible for her to surrender no matter what!
"Could I invite you to drink some Cargarde Peninsula coffee?" Roland spoke once more.
"—" Valkries came to a halt with her foot out. She stood frozen in her spot, her upper body still maintaining a slightly forward-leaning posture. The way she stopped herself seemed overly stiff. "What… did you say?"
"I want to treat you to coffee," Roland repeated himself. "Although it wouldn't count as real coffee, it's a special drink that is very similar."
Valkries stared at him for a long time before voicing the confusion in her heart. "… Why?"
She couldn't guess what this male was thinking at all—reality was different to this place, the coexistence of her race and humans was an imagined illusion. Since he had already confirmed her true origins, it wouldn't make sense to let her off. If she was not going to be greeted by death, then it would only be an outcome worse than death.
"Because some things are better laid out in the open than hidden," Roland said slowly, "especially when the 'Battle of Divine Will' is not the 'Final Battle' yet."
The 'Battle of Divine Will'… is not the 'Final Battle' yet…
Valkries couldn't help but be surprised.
She never would have thought that she would hear something like this from a human.
It was only after a long period of silence that she regained her wary composure. "Where do you want to have the talk?"
"Not far from here, only a few minutes away." Roland snapped his fingers, the sound of a car engine came from behind him. "Board the car, I've already booked a table."
Roland didn't lie to her.
The location he chose was a high-class restaurant situated inside a high-rise building. Sitting in front of the floor to ceiling glass windows, she could see the snow covered urban skyline. Soothing music filled the restaurant and the atmosphere was peaceful and elegant.
Valkries knew that choosing this place to discuss was Roland's way of expressing his sincerity—if he had wanted to kill her, a public setting like this was certainly not a suitable execution ground.
Noticing the group of witches who were staring intently at them, she inhaled deeply after sitting down. "Why didn't you just ask to meet me here directly?"
"That would waste too much time, I didn't think you would agree straight away—when not being cornered, it's easy for people to refuse and avoid, so it's much easier to do it this way." Roland shrugged. "Since we've already reached an initial understanding, then let's get to our main point of discussion quickly. Honesty would benefit both of us. I am Roland Wimbledon, the King of Graycastle and one of the creators of the Dream World. You are?"
One of… the creators? Although she had already guessed that he wasn't a simple visitor, his identity shocked Valkries greatly. This was her first time hearing that a territory in the Realm of Mind could be created by multiple people. But this may be why he couldn't take complete control of this domain like the demon king could. Suppressing her impulse to ask who the others were, the Nightmare Lord slowly replied, "Valkries. That's my name."
"How about your title and rank? Like "Sky Lord" for example… could you be more specific?"
She paused for a moment. "Nightmare Lord, that is what I'm called."
Roland spat out his drink.
This time it was Roland's turn to be shocked.