Chapter 145 – Chapter 27: Queen #2
It was his fourth time returning to the Demon King’s Palace. The first three times had been through the transportation formation, so he was familiar with the transportation formation location in the Demon King’s Palace.
In comparison to when he left, the number of In-gong’s companions had increased due to the addition of Nayatra, Silvan and Sepira.
Unfortunately, Vandal had to stay behind in order to defend Evian. Alita and Kaparang had been sent as personnel to support the Evian mission, so they didn’t return to the Demon King’s Palace.
‘I’m glad I got to say goodbye to Alita.’
Alita had come to Karamis to take care of the Black Flame Dragon, however, In-gong hadn’t been able to return to Evian and say goodbye to Vandal and Kaparang. He had strong feelings towards the comrades he had fought with on the front lines.
In-gong opened his eyes slowly. The magic light from the formation was fading, and he was able to see those waiting for them.
The welcome crew increased in size every time he returned through the transportation formation. This was despite the fact that several concubine children had been dispatched along with the royal children to various places around the Demon World.
Without much difficulty, In-gong was able to find Flora, who had come to meet him. Standing next to her were the concubine children, who were part of Felicia’s faction, as well as Beiring, Karapapa and several people from Felicia’s mansion. Some concubine children from the previous tea party were added, so dozens of people were waiting to welcome them.
‘It is overwhelming.’
In-gong smiled at Flora. However, Flora and the welcoming party seemed strangely baffled.
Why? Was it due to the addition of Nayatra? Or was it because of Sepira’s cut off hand? It was unlikely. He felt sorry toward Nayatra and Sepira, but the welcoming party wasn’t really paying attention to them. It didn’t make sense that the two people would confuse everyone in the welcoming party.
There had to be another reason, and In-gong soon saw it as he felt something familiar.
The crowd of people, who had come here either to observe or for some other reason, split apart as a group headed toward In-gong’s party. There were several people, but the middle one was a face he had already seen a few times.
“Mama?! Ah, no. Mother?”
Caitlin shouted reflexively before correcting herself hastily.
It was the 4th Queen, Elaine Moonlight. The queen of the lycanthropes smiled gracefully at Caitlin’s mistake and moved her gaze to In-gong. As always, her eyes were calm but difficult to read. Ludwig, the leader of the Blood Companions, was standing beside her with a strict expression.
In-gong greeted Elaine, followed by Caitlin, Felicia and Silvan. Then Elaine replied in a gentle voice,
“It is nice to see you. This is our first encounter in the Demon King’s Palace. Once again, welcome back.”
Elaine was very graceful and beautiful. However, In-gong felt a sense of incongruity hearing her talk like that while still resembling Caitlin. In-gong greeted her once again,
“Thank you for your hospitality, Your Majesty.”
“It is natural.”
While In-gong and Elaine were exchanging greetings slowly, the impatient Caitlin spoke,
“Your Majesty, what brings you to the Demon Kin…”
“It isn’t good to stand here and talk. We shall talk later so just go back to your mansion for now.”
Elaine cut off Caitlin in the middle and stared straight at In-gong. Caitlin closed her mouth with dismay while In-gong quickly said,
“We will do so, Your Majesty.”
“Then Caitlin, I will see you later.”
After Caitlin replied, Elaine said goodbye and left. In-gong looked back and muttered in a small voice to Carack,
“Do you think she will come to the mansion?’
“Perhaps, or maybe she intends to invite us. The queen has a mansion too.”
It was a reasonable opinion. After all, it was better for the queen to invite the prince than the other way around.
‘Is it because of Gerard?’
Gerard had escaped from the lycanthropes’ Grey Tower. Due to this, In-gong had told the lycanthropes he had taken care of Gerard. If it was really about Gerard, then he didn’t need to worry about why the 4th Queen had come to the palace.
After Elaine left, the welcoming party headed toward In-gong’s group, and Flora was as serious as always.
“Your Highness, I’m glad you’ve come back safely.”
“I’m glad to see you, Flora. Has there been anything unusual while I was gone?”
“The mansion is calm.”
It was a short and quick answer. Then In-gong asked again,
“The schedule for the court gathering has been set.”
“Well then, won’t something happen again this time?”
Carack asked with a serious expression. In-gong turned toward Carack.
“Hey, what basis do you have for saying that? By the way, should you really be saying that?”
“I gave up. Prince will be more comfortable if you give up as well. Putting down the burden will ease your mind.”
Carack said with worldly eyes. The clear, deep eyes made it seem like he had gained spiritual enlightenment.
In-gong huffed before turning back to the group. It seemed like all the greetings were over, so he gave an order to Carack,
“Anyway, let’s move on.”
“Uhh, why do I feel like I’m back home? This can’t be.”
As soon as they entered the parlor of In-gong’s mansion, Amita stopped imitating a pet and sighed deeply. That ominous feeling had returned. Maybe they would have to live here for the rest of their life.
As Amita’s ominous feeling increased further, Delia lowered herself to Amita’s eye level and bowed.
“Amita, my life was saved thanks to the armour you made. Thank you.”
After Delia showed her appreciation, Silvan moved as well. Silvan lowered his posture next to Delia and said in a solemn voice,
“I also want to thank you. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Amita’s sword.”
“I’m grateful. Amita is Silvan and Delia’s saviour.”
Felicia didn’t lower her posture, but she spoke in a lively voice. Then Amita responded in a rough voice,
“Hrmm. What saviour? I just did what I said I would do. It is just equipment. Don’t act like this. It is disgusting.”
They grunted, but their tail was waving in the air instead of pounding on the ground.
Daphne and the others covered their mouths to hide their smiles. Whether it was because their work was appreciated or some other reason, Amita seemed quite happy.
“This is the perfect timing to distribute some equipment.”
“Oh, did you complete more?”
Carack asked with shining eyes, and Amita nodded.
“I followed this person around for close to a fortnight. It took some work.”
They really did. After joining In-gong’s group, this was the first peaceful day in a fortnight. In fact, it wasn’t just for Amita but In-gong and Felicia as well. The two people had spent several days in turmoil because of the Famine Knight.
“This is armour for the Great Princess.”
Amita said, and Daphne pulled out a box. There was chainmail in the box. Every chain on the armour was so thin that at first glance, it looked like clothes made of cloth.
“Wah, it is amazing!”
Caitlin’s eyes shone as expected when she received the chainmail from Daphne. The chest part was covered with the scales of the black dragon.
Amita’s tail waved as they explained,
“There are a few spells which strengthen the body and other support magic. If you activate aura, the chainmail will adjust to fit your body.”
Growth adjustment was a very important issue for Caitlin. According to his memory from Knight Saga, Caitlin had been at least one palm taller than she was now.
“It is specialized in defending against ranged attacks, including aura and magic, but don’t believe in the armour too much. You might get hurt.”
“Thank you. I love it. It is really amazing!”
Caitlin hugged Amita and expressed her gratitude. Amita blinked repeatedly, but they didn’t reject Caitlin’s violent affection. Amita just stayed within Caitlin’s arms.
“Now, this time, it is for you.”
Amita glanced at Daphne, who handed a box to In-gong. In-gong opened it to find new greaves made from the scales of the black dragon.
In-gong asked reflexively since he was already using the Dragon Scale Greaves.
Amita sneered and said,
“Yes, it is better than what you are using now. Particularly, you can use the sacred flame that the last flame gave you. It will be much more effective. It also fits well with your dragon aura and magic power.”
Indeed, it would be nice to have greaves which strengthened his feet techniques. It was just like Amita said. The performance of these new greaves was several times better than the Dragon Scale Greaves.
In-gong gladly put the new Dragon Scale Greaves into his inventory, while Carack asked quietly,
“Raccoon, is mine ready yet?”
“Bah, your armour is unconditionally last. Unconditionally.”
Carack started sulking at Amita’s decisive answer. Amita seemed to feel even better as they looked at In-gong.
“Prince, give Night Watch to me. You won’t be fighting in the Demon King’s Palace, so this is the perfect opportunity.”
“Are you going to improve it?”
“I’m just looking.”
Amita said so, but they were already reaching out for it. Unlike the last time, they were active when it came to work related to the elder dragons. Still, there was no reason to refuse. In-gong handed Night Watch to Amita.
“Then I will head to the workshop.”
Amita held Night Watch in the air with telekinesis and headed toward their workshop. Daphne could be considered Amita’s helper, so she followed along after saying goodbye to In-gong’s party.
After the two of them left, In-gong asked Flora,
“Flora, what is the schedule for the court gathering?”
“It is pretty quick this time as well.”
Carack’s words held true. Every time they returned, it felt like there was a tight schedule for the court gathering.
“Well, it has been a few days since our report. There is no need for time.”
Felicia didn’t seem excessively worried, but she then spoke with a slight frown,
“The problem is the 4th Queen. Did she visit the Demon King’s Palace because of Gerard?”
“Isn’t it highly likely?”
In-gong agreed. The 4th Queen hardly ever came to the Demon King’s Palace, so it was hard to think of another reason.
Felicia glanced at Caitlin and said carefully,
“That… she isn’t going tobe angry right? No matter what happened, Gerard is still the 4th Queen’s…”
Caitlin became depressed at Felicia’s conjecture, but she couldn’t refute it. Both Caitlin and Felicia considered their brothers very precious to them, so they couldn’t deny it. How would they feel if Chris and Silvan had died? Even if the two people did something wrong, they would still feel resentment.
However, In-gong shook his head.
“It isn’t like that.”
This wasn’t the first time In-gong had defeated Gerard. Furthermore, the lycanthropes had judged that Gerard was dead when In-gong first defeated him. At that time, they had expressed their gratitude, so it didn’t make sense to have a grudge now.
“Indeed. That seems to be the case.”
Felicia and Caitlin’s expressions disappeared. Felicia stroked Caitlin’s head a few times and said,
“I’m sorry to leave as soon as I arrived, but Silvan and I will be returning to our mansion. I need to prepare for the court gathering tomorrow. Caitlin, do you want to come with me? Let’s get ready for the court gathering together.
“I understand, Unni.”
This time, Chris wouldn’t be present at the court gathering. So, it was a chance for Caitlyn to try a different style like she had done at Takar’s auction.
“Shutra, I’ll see you tomorrow. Take a rest.”
Felicia, Caitlin and Silvan left the mansion with their aides, and it became silent instantly.
Flora had prepared water for In-gong to wash up and rest after. Then he tried to soothe the sulky Green Wind.
‘Bah. I am not such an easy woman. I won’t fall down due to a few sweet compliments. The soft hands stroking my head are of no use.’
If Green Wind had a tail like Amita, it would be hitting the ground. In-gong listened to Green Wind grumble as he stroked her head, but she didn’t avoid his hands. Rather, her eyes showed that she was enjoying it.
The next morning, the people gathered in a room next to the court gathering and waited for their turn.
Unlike her usual style, Felicia was dressed in a white dressed with minimal exposure, and the dress was designed to reveal all her feminine curves.
Caitlin was wearing a pink dress which revealed her shoulders, akin to what she had worn at Takar’s auction. There was also one large ribbon which was quite cute. She was like a well-decorated doll.
Silvan was dressed in a fancy black suit like last time, while In-gong and Carack wore a white suit and black suit, respectively.
Carack spoke while fiddling with his bowtie,
“This is one of the few times I feel really nervous. Is is due to the clothes?”
“That is a pretty good opinion.”
In-gong nodded. Despite living as a prince for half a year already, it still felt strange to get so dressed up. Moreover, this was a court gathering—the demon king was present beyond this wall.
‘Please don’t let anything happen this time.’
There was always a commotion at the court gathering.
As though she read In-gong’s heart, Felicia laughed and told everyone,
“Release your tension. Don’t we already know about the 4th Queen? There should be no surprises.”
“Felicia is right. Nothing will happen.”
Silvan nodded in agreement, but In-gong felt worse after Silvan’s help.
Then at that moment, with perfect timing, the palace servant came and informed them that it was their turn. They glanced at each other before heading into the court gathering. As always, In-gong was the last one to enter the court gathering.
He could sense it the moment the door opened. Something suspicious was flowing in the air. There was clearly something different about this court gathering.
Was it because the 4th Queen was participating in it?
The answer was half correct.
In-gong swallowed his bitter laughter as he saw what was before him. Up on the high dais, there was a person located at each side of the demon king. 4th Queen Elaine Moonlight was on his left, while there was a beautiful woman located on his right side who could be Felicia’s sister.
It was the 3rd Queen, Sylvia Doomblade. Felicia’s mother and queen of the dark elves…
It was her.
“Shutra, be honest. What have you done to my child? These days, she only talks about you when she opens her mouth.”
“Omamama?”(Traditional way for princes and princesses to call their mother, the queen)
“Oh, that sounds like my child.”