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Chapter 568: The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

A woman was walking in a dark corridor, her head covered with a completely black bag, and two Demons were escorting her from behind.

Arriving at the end of the hall, they arrived at a door with two demonic guards standing in front of the door.

The guards looked at the Demon Dukes, nodded, then the door opened.

"Inside." The Demon Duke pushed the woman, and she fell into the room.

The Demon Duke removed the bag from the woman's head, revealing the woman to be Lilith Tepes, Vlad's daughter.

Her expression was horrible, and pure murderous intent was seen in the woman's blood-red eyes.

The Demon Duke didn't seem to care about the woman's eyes. Instead, he had a dark desire to perpetrate all manners of psychological and physical torture upon her, but unfortunately, the King himself forbade such an act.

And that Demon didn't have the heart to provoke the Demon King's wrath.

The Duke turned away, and the door closed.

"Lilith, are you okay?"

The woman looked up to notice the two blue eyes with magical patterns that seemed to be 'floating' through the little girl's eyes.

"Did they do something to you?" Emily Moriarty, the Witch Queen's daughter, asked with concern.

"...No, they didn't; they just locked me in that room for who knows how long."

"... Two days." A boy's voice sounded from another part of the cell.

The little girl and the woman looked toward the voice and saw a boy sitting on the bed with a book in his hand.

The boy had chocolate-brown skin, slicked-up black hair, and black eyes, and his child's suit was replaced by a simple white shirt and black shorts.

Thomas Fenrir, The Third Son of The Werewolf King.

"You were stuck in that place for two days."

"... How do you know that? We don't have clocks here or anything like that."

"Internal clock."

"… Huh?"

"I follow a pattern of life that is very controlled by my mother. I sleep and wake up at specific times. Because of that, I can deduce the time you were there." He spoke in a neutral tone while still looking at the book.

"Sounds like a suffocating life." Lilith couldn't help but hum as she got up and sat down on the bed.

"..." She looked at the two cuffs made of pure material on her hands and feet with disdain.

She scratched her throat a little, feeling a little thirsty.

Fortunately, the demons had provided basic necessities for the Royal Progeny of each Faction.

Because of that, she wasn't that hungry, even if it wasn't the high-quality blood she was used to drinking.

"You think? I think it's pretty normal…." Emily spoke.

"My mother does the same thing to me."

"It's better than being left alone and being incompetent."

'Ugh.' Lilith, for some reason, felt offended by those words.

Yes, she wasn't useless; she'd been trained when she was younger, but as time went on, she was just spoiled by her father, and because of that, she was far from the competence of the two children.

Despite being very young, Emily was like a living search tool. She had vast knowledge in her little head, from the most useless things to complex Spells.

She wasn't the daughter of The Witch Queen for nothing; she was very smart.

Thomas, despite being a rude, rough, and brutally honest young man, was very good at seeing ulterior motives.

As expected of The Son of The Werewolf Queen, Tasha, a woman who in her homeland was described as an 'evil' woman.

It's quite obvious that The Queen personally tutored him. The boy might look innocent, but he was a born killer.

'Somehow, it's looking like I'm the kid here.' Lilith felt a strong attack in her pride at the sight of these two heirs.

A while passed, and Emily, who'd seen that Lilith was fine and had not suffered anything, returned to pester Thomas.

Much to the boy's displeasure.

"Emilly Moriarty." The voice of the guards who were outside was heard.

Soon the door opened, and a tall man with entirely red skin, two horns on his head, and golden eyes entered:

"It's your turn."

"Ugh, you can stop with these useless threats. My mom won't do anything as long as you don't touch me." Emily pouted; she was tired of that smelly dark place!

"..." Lilith and Thomas didn't react much.

Thomas had been through this before, and Lilith had recently been through this.

But it wasn't like they liked it, especially Lilith, who had never been arrested in her life.

"..." The Demon just looked at Emily with a dry look.

"Ugh, fine." The little girl snorted and walked towards the Demon.

"Stop."

"Put your hands forward."

"…Are we seriously doing this? Look into my eyes!" She pointed to herself, "I can't even keep a Basic Enchantment as this activated; the proof of that is the Magic Circle scattered across my eyes; my Magic doesn't work here!"

"…Put your hands forward." The guard spoke in a firmer tone.

"Haaah…" The little girl just sighed and did so.

Soon the guard removed a pair of handcuffs similar to Lilith's and placed them on Emily's wrists.

"Done?" She asked.

"Legs too."

"For the love of the crack-smoking holy unicorns! Look at my short legs! Do you think I can run away from a Demon without my Magic!?"

"I'm practically an ordinary twelve-year-old human girl now."

'...No ordinary twelve-year-old human can look at a Demon and say that.' Lilith and Thomas thought at the same time.

"...Fine." The Demon grunted in visible annoyance; he didn't want to deal with this child, "Just don't do anything funny."

"Umu, I will behave myself." She nodded her head as her two twin-tails tails fluttered around.

"Be careful, Emily," Lilith spoke.

"...." The little girl looked at the Vampire and spoke with an innocent smile:

"Sure."

Soon a child left the room escorted by the Demon.

The moment they left the room and walked away from the sight of the two guards entering another hallway, the Demon in front stopped walking, turned around, and lowered his head in respect:

"I apologize for my rude words, Lady Emily."

"Meh, don't mind about it; you did a good job. Take me to class, okay?" The little girl spoke with the same innocent tone as before, but this time a certain strange seriousness for a child was present.

If there was anything worth mentioning about this change in attitude, it was that the two Magic Circles that had been floating brokenly in Emily's eyes were now wholly mended, fully displaying their intricacy and small print that was almost invisible if not entirely focused upon.

Emily's eyes glowed slightly, and white energy covered her body.

Soon her entire body was squeaky clean; it was apparent that she had used a 'Clean' spell, a feat that would impress most Witches even if it was a simple Basic Spell.

The little girl started the Spell with just her intent; she didn't have to mutter something or form a Magic Circle like most Witches usually did.

She'd merely thought it, and the Magic happened.

She was indeed the Daughter of The Witch Queen. After all, only The Witch Queen could do something like that.

"Haah, I'm finally clean, even if there's a bathroom in that place; wearing the same clothes daily is disgusting."

"Again… I apologize for the inconvenience."

"It's okay. This should be a 'kidnapping' after all, and the place we are in is already very kind compared to a normal prison."

"Lead the way."

"Of course, please accompany me."

The Demon again started walking in front with Emily behind him.

And that attitude alone would raise suspicion; after all, what kind of prisoner would follow after the guard? It should be the other way around.

Unfortunately, there were few Demons in this place, most of whom were Demons aware of their King's goals and plans.

Even the two guards standing in front of the prisoners' cell were at a low rank in terms of strength.

Entering a room, the Demon Guard spoke:

"Take as much time as you need."

"Mm." Emily nodded, and soon the guard vacated the room.

Emily looked around and saw a much more comfortable room than the previous one, but she didn't care about that since her focus was on an object appearing as a blue cube on the table.

She walked towards the table, sat on the chair, and gently touched the object.

The next moment, a floating screen appeared in front of her, showing someone's face.

"Mother."

"Sweetheart, my beloved daughter, are you alright? Are they treating you well?" If Vlad, Volk, or anyone familiar with this woman saw the expressions on her face right now, they would be deeply shocked.

The woman was now not a Queen or the Leader of an entire Faction that held a monopoly on all Magic Items sold worldwide; she was just a loving mother.

A small smile appeared on Emily's face. She didn't feel uncomfortable with her mother's display of affection since, as long as she could remember, the woman had always treated her like this.

"They didn't do anything to me; I'm being treated well here."

"Mm, that is good."

"…About the plan." The loving look on the Queen's face changed to a more stern one.

"Everything is going according to plan; I managed to get closer to Thomas Fenrir and Lilith Tepes."

"I had no problems with Lilith Tepes, and she is surprisingly easy to get along with."

"I'm just having problems with Thomas since his upbringing is not normal. He was raised to be a Prince but also an assassin, and he is very cautious."

"... I expected this; Tasha doesn't leave loose ends. She failed her first two children because she let them be taken care of by Volk, but the third one seems to be personally under her care," Evie spoke.

"…Mother," Emily called her mother in a very low voice.

"Yes?"

"How long am I supposed to stay here? I know this whole charade is so that Arcane's neutrality won't be affected in the future, but..."

"You miss home, and you want to hone your Magic," Evie spoke gently.

"..." All Evie got was a nod from Emily.

The reason for Emily not showing herself to the public was very simple; she had everything at home. Literally speaking, she had it all.

Whatever she wanted, her mother could acquire it easily.

She only got personally involved in this problem at her mother's request, which she immediately accepted. Her mother never asked her for anything in her life, she was the woman who taught her everything, and although she was strict and demanded discipline, she was very loving too.

Therefore, she never felt that she was not loved. In fact, it was the opposite; she felt that her mother would do everything for her.

Because of this, she was never interested in the outside world.

And despite being a long way from her mother, neither mother nor daughter were worried; woven into this dress that Emily was wearing had enough Enchantments to cause a tremendous natural disaster.

The Witch Queen didn't play around regarding her daughter's safety.

Mental protection, resistance that could reach the point of invulnerability, Soul protection, protection from external influences that could manipulate the girl's behavior, complete immunity to Demonic Miasma, and complete resistance to all elemental damage. These were just some of the Enchantments on the girl's dress.

All these Enchantments were powered by a very rare Magic Stone that existed only in the Queen's collection, a Magic Stone that was something like a walking nuclear reactor.

Though it wasn't necessary as Emily herself had one of the largest Mana pools in Arcane history, completely rivaling the current 'first' daughter Selena.

Which was ridiculous to think about; after all, she was only 12 years old.

"Don't worry, Daughter."

"Soon, you will be home."

"…Eh?"

"A certain 'arrogant' man is coming to rescue Lilith."

'... Alucard.' Evie thought internally. She knew the man; the reason for this was that one day her mother came home and left throwing curses at the man's name. She had never seen anyone capable of irritating her mother, who was usually calm and in control, this much.

Because of that, driven by curiosity, she'd decided to research the man, and when she saw the recording of the meeting of Supernatural Beings where he appeared,

She was speechless.

She had never seen anyone so perfect before, it was like he was a God of Beauty, but the man was clearly a 'mortal'.

"But isn't this place hidden?"

"Yes, but there are still ways to learn about this place; remember what I taught you about the Progenitors of Vampires?"

"... They are able to store Souls and read the memories of those Souls."

"Yes, because this ability is very difficult to counteract, it's not unrealistic for him to discover this place easily."

"... Not to mention he's not acting alone." Evie narrowed her eyes at the screen:

"For some reason, Volk did not interfere in the war, he went elsewhere, and even Tasha herself was not exempt from this; The Queen and King of Werewolves focused their attention on a completely different location."

'...From the look on my mother's face, she seems very curious about this but hasn't found anything yet, which is a surprise considering the resources scattered all over the world at this time.' Emily's only thought was that this was a 'Pantheon's' interference.

After all, even though her influence was significant in the Mortal World, the same could not be said within the various Pantheons. The Queen had few 'moles' in those places, most of them being Gods who themselves were not very influential.

"Although they aren't coming to rescue the boy personally, they are sending several high-level Werewolves and Alphas."

"The Angels are also moving much more actively now that they have cleared South Africa and Europe."

"Small conflicts are happening all over the globe; the places that have the most' peace' currently are the places where the Pantheons call home."

"Like Greece, Japan, Egypt, etc."

"The Demons were forced to retreat to ancient China and the Russian ruins."

"Diablos is busy with these matters; even if he is a great Leader, he cannot focus on several things at once."

"Something big is about to happen at any moment, and I don't want you in this place when it does."

"Therefore… When that arrogant man arrives."

"Try to stay by his side and be rescued too."

"…Okay, Mother." She nodded like a good daughter listening to her mother.

Evie's face changed to extremely serious:

"Listen to me, Daughter."

"…Yes?" She shivered a little at her mother's somber tone; she had never seen a woman like that.

"Don't be strangely close to that man; he has very keen observation; you can easily deceive Lilith and Thomas, one is naive, and the other, even if he was trained to be an assassin, is still a child."

'Tasha is many things, but she is not cruel to her children; even though he had a strict upbringing, he was always protected as well.' Evie thought internally.

"The same scenario will not happen with that man."

"You got it?"

"Yes, Mother." She nodded her head with a serious face.

"…and another thing."

She looked at her mother.

"Don't fall in love with him."

"…M-M-Mother!?" The girl's face turned pure red:

"I will not fall in love!" She practically screamed as she rose from her chair.

"Lower your voice, and sit down." She ordered like a mother instructing her daughter.

"..." The little girl did just that.

"I am not teasing, my daughter."

Emily looked confused at her mother.

"I'm being honest and cautious."

"Even I who have seen Goddesses of Beauty in person found myself slightly affected by his Charm." She didn't want to admit it, but for a few seconds, she was caught up in that man's Charm, which was one of the reasons she'd gotten so irritated too.

"…Eh?" Emily looked at her mom like she'd grown another head or something.

"Charm is one of the most dangerous forms of power in this world. Remember my lessons about Aphrodite?"

"...Yes, Mother said never to be in Aphrodite's presence in the future without having a Spell that resists her Charm." Aphrodite was listed on the list of dangerous people just for existing to Evie. Her very Concepts of Beauty, Love, and Sexuality were extremely dangerous to sentient beings and 'mortals' alike.

She could brainwash en masse, and everyone would be her loyal servants.

Evie nodded and warned her daughter:

"Treat that man as if he were a male version of the Goddess Aphrodite."

Emily opened her eyes in shock.

"When in his presence, make sure to keep the dress I made for you on yourself at all times; it should protect you from the influence of that power.

"Yes, Mother." Emily nodded seriously.

"..." Looking at her daughter, she still felt worried.

Everyone could take precautions against 'Charm', but that was a force that was simply too troublesome to oppose.

Even if Aphrodite didn't use this power, the woman's own beauty, her personality, and the way she acted could make people' enchanted' by her, even if she wasn't trying to.

Charm was just too simple a word to be described as 'mind control'.

Yes, if the Goddess wanted, she could do that, but that was not where the force of Charm exerted most of its power. It was through small interactions, the looks, the smiles.

If you meet someone on the street, and they are well dressed and stunning, your initial 'impression' of them would be instantly good.

Charm worked just like that, but it was a steady, passive effect and not very aggressive.

And if you combined Charm with 'charisma', the effect of that 'invisible' power that existed in all beings would only grow even stronger.

Seeing her mother's face, Emily said:

"Don't worry, Mother. I completely understand the dangers of 'Charm'. You made me spend 3 years of my life just learning to resist and identify it."

"I will not fail; trust me, Mother." She nodded confidently.

'So what if he's handsome? I won't easily fall into that trap, humpf!'

"… Haah, I'm trusting you; as soon as you leave this place, my contract with Diablo will be complete, and my plans will be completed. Of course, you'll have to do one last 'act' for everything to be more believable, but that is all."

"Ugh, please don't tell me I have to cry; I'm bad at that."

"You don't need to cry." Evie laughed in amusement when she saw her daughter's face.

"Thank goodness..." She sighed in relief.

"When you leave this place, contact me, and I'll start the final part of everything. Take care, my daughter. And know that if something happens-."

"…just destroy everything, and you'll deal with the consequences." Emily finished what her mother was about to say.

"... You got it." Evie flashed an amused smile.

A smile that her own daughter shared.

As the saying goes: The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Emily Moriarty was a lot like her mother.

.....