"Smile a bit more crookedly."

"Like this?"

"Crooked. Think corrupt! Think sleazy! Think depraved!"

"Err, how about this?"


Alison slammed her fist against her forehead and slumped onto the sofa.

Sia leaned back further on the pink bean bag and watched the show with relish. Enigma in her spirit form was reading a book on methods of torture.

"Focus, Mr. Emperor! Focus! You should put up the appearance of a corrupt, immoral, despicable ruler to those envoys!" Alison groaned at Varian.

Varian glanced down at her from the corner of his eye. "Be honest, are you using this opportunity to vent your grievances?"

Alison nodded seriously.

"Seriously…" Varian rubbed his chin and nodded at his reflection in the mirror. "You're just jealous that you can't find a secretary to unload all your work like I do, right?"

Alison nodded again, this time with more vigor. "I'm trying hard, but I can't find anyone capable enough. They're either young and inexperienced or old and rigid."



"Amateur!" Varian poked his finger into empty air and Alison clutched her forehead, glaring at him and raising her fist. "If you can't find one, train one. If you can't train one, mold one. If you can't do either of them, push a young and inexperienced with an old and rigid, whoever learns from the other stays."

Alison was preparing to create a small ruckus. But his words shut her mouth and caused her to look at him in genuine confusion.

Tilting her head, the experienced female official said. "What you said makes a lot of sense. But...why? How do you even know stuff like that?"

Varian chuckled. "What do you do every day?"

"Huh? Of course, I do your work every day! I have no time for anything at all, thank you very much."

"And what do you think I do every day?"


"I think of how to unload even more work onto you. So, I know how to escap—I mean, delegate work very well." Varian gave a cheeky grin.

"That's it!" Sia slammed the couch and yelled.

Varian and Alison looked at her in confusion.

"That smile! That is it! It might not be crooked or sleazy but it's nasty as hell!" Sia said with conviction.

Enigma looked at Varian with hesitation but nodded lightly before covering her face with a book to hide her blush.

'Why do spirits even blush?' Alison wanted to scream at this injustice. 'Enigma, oh my poor Enigma, what happened to you?'

For 'Blue Flash' Alison who had been with Enigma through thick and thin, seeing the cold and emotionless girl blush was nothing less than a subversion of world view.

It's like waking up one day and realizing you are your cat's pet and not the other way around!

"They'll be here soon. Stick to the plan." Varian clapped and gave them a thumbs-up before teleporting to the edge of the solar system.

— — — —

Three spaceships blasted past the final defense line of the human empire. Following the Emperor's instruction, no one tried to obstruct the ships.

"This civilization isn't stupid at least." In the central ship, the female officer Ashely crossed her legs and smirked as the standing armies on the planetoid were thrown far back by the accelerating space.

Accompanying her were her five assistants, now resting in their own rooms. And of course, the 'manpower'—five hybrids that were put to sleep in their cell.

"My hopes of killing a few and establishing deterrent have gone to waste," The woman pursed her lips. "Waste, what a waste."

There were many cases of isolated civilizations attacking the 'envoys'.

If the envoys were in a good mood, they'd only punish the civilization with an astronomical debt which would render the entire civilization to modern-day bond slavery for a few centuries.

If they were in a bad mood though, the civilization might go extinct.

"There's something…" As she watched the planets blur by, Ashely noticed something was off.

There was no ritual, no reverence, no reception. The inhabitants went on with their daily lives. As if this was just another day.

'Just another day?' Ashley's gray wings fanned out, their sharp edges slicing through the wind with lethal precision.

'Is it your ignorance or arrogance, ruler of this lost civilization?' Her gray eyes darkened.

The envoys were finally welcomed to a floating city. The spaceships were parked hassle-free and when they finally stepped out, a young man with a big smile welcomed them with open arms.

"Wercum! Wercum frunds fram distunt lunds!"

The three envoys, with their five assistants, frowned together. If the hybrids had proper brains, they too would've frowned.

"Whar happens? I happi! You no happy?" Varian's smile grew larger. He checked the spaceship condition with the crew over there and gave them a thumbs up. "No probraems!"

'Did this guy learn the lingua franca yesterday?'

Ashley wanted to slap Varian in the face but held back with patience she didn't know she had. At least, this proved to be a relatively normal lost civilization. If he had a perfect lingua franca, that would actually be a bit doubtful.

Still, a celestial ranker would master the language in two-to-three days. So, they would only have to put up with this atrociousity for a few more hours.

"Ahem, anyway, we are the envoys of Pala kingdom, sent to conduct a census and add your civilization under the kingdom." Finar stepped forward and got down to business.

"Oh?" Varian tilted his head and looked at them with a blank expression that seemed to stare through their souls. "Oh! Okar, okar! You suck, I say! You suck all, I say all!"

'Suck? Does he mean seek? We seek information, he says? What the hell?'

Finar's eyebrows twitched at his words but he continued to speak in an authoritative tone. "You should answer all the questions. No secrets should be hidden. Including hard questions!"

Varian stood there in silence for a moment before nodding with a smile as bright as the sun. "Suck hard, I give hard!"