***The Holy Palatial Gardens***
“Milady, there are letters for you that arrived from Cherflammen.”
It didn’t take long for the demon ambassador to Chersea, Lady Kalen Grattiani, to receive news of what happened in Cherflammen, as well as its eventual results. Her correspondences were answered in two letters, one meant for her, and one for the eyes of the Human Saint only. The letter addressed to Lady Grattiani narrated the course of conflict, as well as new instructions on how she would represent her new ‘state’, the Federal Demon Republic of Cherflammen, and its head, the demon king-president, Prince Hurion Devras IV.
Of course, she didn’t open the second correspondence, for it was reserved for the Lady Madelaine Ann Rubinforth. It was also sealed with the ‘golden signet of the demon lord’, which meant that it should be sent to its receiver as soon as possible. So, buoyed by the prospect that the Human Saint would finally stop dropping by her house for her near-daily visits, the demon ambassador ordered her carriage prepared, and immediately left for the Holy Palatial Gardens.
Lady Grattiani arrived by dinner, and the Lady Madelaine, being a gracious host, welcomed her over the dinner table.
“My master has finally answered my letters, Your Holiness,” the demon ambassador handed her the sealed letter from the Prince Hurion Devras himself. The Human Saint quickly opened it, though with utmost care as if it was the most sensitive piece of document she ever held.
While the Lady Madelaine read its contents, the Lady Grattiani explained the events that led to the unification of the demon clans, under a new state called the ‘Federal Demon Republic of Cherflammen’. She narrated exactly what was according to the contents of the letter that was meant for her. She also added as she concluded that, at long last, the Lord Kuro of Arles would finally return by Her Holiness’ side, and everything would return to normal once again.
“What is the meaning of this?”
“!!!” Lady Grattiani’s joyous mood was put to a screeching halt, when the Human Saint crumpled the letter and threw it away. She also slammed her hands on the dinner table, while glaring at the demon ambassador.
“I-Is there…Is there any problem regarding the letter, Y-Your Holiness?” Lady Gratianni felt small before the furious Human Saint, and she had difficulty in asking about her host’s concerns, but it had to be done.
“That is not what we agreed about!” Lady Madelaine blurted out, almost screaming. “And in the first place, I was only coerced to agree to this arrangement! The Lord Kuro was already well inside Cherflammen when my senses returned, and I can’t do anything about it!”
The demon ambassador couldn’t keep her bewilderment to herself. Shivering, she found that she could not utter a single word to appease Lady Rubinforth. A nearby servant then picked the letter, and handed it back to her. The Lady Grattiani, taking the gesture as a cue for her to read the correspondence, straightened the crumpled paper.
’To the Great Human Saint of Chersea, Madelaine Ann Rubinforth, Duchess of Rubinforth. Greetings! It’s been an honor for me to deliver the great news that our brave forces triumphed against all odds and won the war, now known to our chroniclers as the ‘Demon Wars of Unification’. Indeed, we are truly unified now, with your faithful friend, yours truly, as the demon king-president of our new state. As it was in the time of your great predecessor, we wish to maintain the amicable relations with Chersea’s kingdoms, as well as your household.
I’d like to personally offer my gratitude to you, Your Holiness, for sending aid to our beleaguered supporters before, in the form of your servant, the Lord Greg Kuro Santos of Arles. His wise and useful ideas helped us defeat our enemies, especially my fugitive brother, the Lord Haya of House Usarved. Rest assured, in connection to his attempts on your life, we already meted out the most proper justice he deserves: death.
As for the Lord Kuro, I beseech for your understanding, Your Holiness. He doesn’t want to return to Chersea yet, for he wanted to finish the reforms he started in our realm. As for how long, I don’t know for now. All that I can say is, he will be safe with us.
Sincerely yours, Hurion Devras IV, lord of the demons. Lord of Darkmoor and Helfan. Protector of the goblins, orcs, Tambaras, Biornos and Usarveds. King-President of the Federal Demon Republic of Cherflammen.’
Though she was already pale, blood still drained from Lady Grattiani’s face. She surely didn’t expect that her master would be stubborn regarding the Lord Kuro, and she also didn’t have the idea on how to deal with the anger of the Human Saint.
“I…I did not k-know…”
“Rest assured, Lady Grattiani,” Lady Madelaine’s voice was calmer now, though the way she held and swayed her table knife scared the demon ambassador. “My anger is not directed against you, for you are kind and helpful to my people. However, as the Lord Kuro is my servant, I need him by my side right now. And I doubt that he wanted to stay in Cherflammen! My only conclusion is that your master is withholding him from returning to me!”
“I…I understand, Your Holiness,” Lady Grattiani quickly stood up to leave, “…I will send a letter to—”
The Human Saint cut her off, “That won’t be necessary, milady!”
“I already gave your master a chance. This time, I would be the one to move,” the Human Saint stood up and turned to a servant. “Send messengers to all the kingdoms of Chersea. Tell each ruler to muster their armies and send them here; I’ll lead those soldiers to Cherflammen to take back what’s mine. Those who wouldn’t comply would face an excommunication from me!”
The absurdity of the Human Saint’s order didn’t escape the attention of the maid, Lady Eris. As she was also excitedly waiting for the return of her master, the young maid couldn’t help but to eavesdrop at the dining hall, thus, she heard the conversation between Lady Gratianni and Lady Madelaine. Alarmed that the Human Saint was being influenced by the Seductress once again, she hurried to the Head Maid’s personal quarters to tell what she had just heard.
“Lady von Leese!” Eris cried out as she burst into the room, “We got trouble!”
“Lady Braunhauer?” Lily blurted out. She was in the middle of changing her clothes, “I’d really appreciate it if you’re Kuro, but…what’s going on? Why are you running?”
“Her Holiness!” the young maid said in-between her breaths. “She’s calling all armies here!”
Eris nodded, “She’s about to attack Cherflammen!”
At once, blood drained from Lily’s face. Wasting no time, she grabbed her head maid uniform, intending to finish dressing up as she ran to the dining hall, with Eris following her. The risk of a new Human-Demon War was too high this time.
Warning: Strong language Title: The Expedition to Cherflammen