I found myself squeezing my hand as I walked through the hallways of a large castle. The walls were decorated with body parts of different beasts, such as a hide from a lion that roamed the Tartarus jungle and the curved amethyst horns of the ancient basilisk race. The most disturbing part of all the decorations was the four tails of the excellent kitsune race.
The Kitsune are a race of celestials known for their tremendous magical capabilities and mana control. I entered the war room and saw the other rulers, surrounded by their elite soldiers sitting at a round table lit up by dragon fire.
“Welcome, vampire; how was your trip?” A grating voice asked. I turned to look at the king of beasts. My fangs grind against my teeth.
“It was okay, Griffin. Are your subjects still fighting over territory?” I replied smugly as I sat down next to the head of the table.
There were about eight other rulers at the table, each seated at their assigned seat.
Closest to the door is Beil, king of the dark elves. His pale gray skin wrinkled into a frown when I walked in as his crimson red eyes matched his expression. But when I looked at him, he immediately looked away.
It’s been three days since I got the news of Xeon's, the former king of the hive, failed invasion of earth. Griffin, the king of beasts, was the first to break the news.
“Where the hell is he!” Griffin shouted, his large body barely fitting in his seat. His tangled amber mane-like hair moved to match the magical energy around him as he growled in anger.
“Calm down, you big Ape. You know he likes his dramatic entrances,” a soft voice spoke. Sitting next to Griffin was Aradia, the queen of witches. She was tiny but confident. She looked at him with dissatisfaction written all over her face.
“Who are you calling an ape?” Griffin responded, leaning over her, but she was unmoving
“You,” a booming voice took over the room; a giant tree green eye looked into the space outside the window.
“I’m glad the king of Titans could join us,” Aradia said with a small smile.
“Yes, Kronos is happy to be here but is deeply sad we lost Xeon,” he said in the third person, but the ending comment didn’t seem genuine when his hot breath filled the air.
“I don't understand why we are here in the first place,” stated Asmodeus, the king of demons. He laid back in his chair as his crystal white eyes stared down at the rest of the rulers, and his white pearl hair covered both his eyes.
“Because we lost a ruler, and we need a plan,” replied Manea, the queen of the undead. She had just walked in her dress made of different bones, and skulls floated behind her as she walked to sit next to me. Her obsidian color eyes silenced the room.
Honestly, out of everyone here, only two could beat me. Manea and the man who rules with an iron fist. Longwong, the king of dragons; as soon as I thought of his name, he walked in.
His presence was palpable as he made Asmodeus immediately sit up. Griffin, the giant ape himself, shuts up his argument with Aradia. His crimson eyes burned like a never-ending fire as his long red hair covered his appearance in his early forties.
“It saddens me to say that we lost a ruler and dear friend of mine,” Longwong announced in his low but commanding voice as he tried his best to sound sad. Still, it was more condescending than anything else. I wasn’t a big fan of Xeon due to his narcissism and inferiority complex that got him killed in the first place.
“Now, I’ve decided to put us on standby. As the guardians and humans learn more about mana and magic,” he continued, this time sitting down at the head of the table, “the war between the celestials has entered a new era. And I would rather not involve lesser organisms; in our war.”
The final statement was also a lie, knowing Longwong for thousands of years. I knew he enjoyed war and killing as his bloodlust made the other rulers fear retaliation for failure. His eyes were hungry to destroy the humans who could kill a Ruler despite their primitive understanding of mana. There was silence for a good few seconds before Longwong spoke again, this time directed toward me.
“Drac, I need you to go to earth and spy on the guardians and the humans,” he told me, his eyes expecting an immediate yes. Still, I felt uneasy going to the earth, especially after what happened to Xeon.
“I don’t think that’s a good idea, so I refuse,” I replied while looking the dragon king in the eye, unaffected by his increasing pressure. He looked at me. His eyes did not match the forceful smile he tried to keep after being rejected.
He sighed deeply; Longwong shook his head while looking down at the floor before back at me. This time magical energy started to surge out of his body as he replied to my statement. “Drac, I’m asking as a friend; we need to know their plans, not just for us but our entire race.”
Everyone looked at me, even Asmodeus, and pleaded for me to answer as the magical energy kept leaking and the gravity in the room increased. I couldn’t feel much of a difference as I scanned the room. Beil and Griffin were both struggling to breathe and were sweating profusely. At the same time, Aradia and Asmodeus had nervous and shaky expressions. While Menea and the King of titans were unfazed like me. I contemplated my choices while looking at the others around me. I sighed, accepting his proposal, and the magical energy faded, letting both Beil and Griffin breathe.
“Glad you agree,” Longwong replied with a smile.
I stood up from the table; I ripped the air as a portal formed. I turned back to look at the rulers. Discontent littered my brain. I came out of the portal and was met with my throne room's dark, gloomy atmosphere. Paintings of the countless battles I’ve fought over the past millennium. Each one depicts my glory and victories as I stood over numerous bodies. While I should be proud of my accomplishment, I just couldn’t; I was tired. Tired of the worthless fighting, tired of the bloodshed, and most importantly, tired of trying to find it.
I sat on my throne and let my mind wander; how would I blend in with humans if my presence could cripple them? About twenty minutes passed as I sat there thinking before I heard the scraping of large iron doors of my throne room open. A woman with blonde hair and crimson eyes walks in and immediately lowers her head as she kneels.
“My lord, how was the meeting?” She asked, never taking her eyes off the ground.
“Raise your head, Persephone, and the meeting was okay. We've decided that I would spy on the humans.” I responded, sitting up in my chair as the first fang of my army looked at me; her crimson eyes pierced me like she was trying to read my very soul.
“Is everything okay, my lord?” she asked as her cotton jacket over her blood-red battle armor radiated a slight magic aura.
“Persephone, do you ever wonder why we are fighting this war?” I asked, getting up from my throne and walking around the throne room, staring at each painting.
“Sometimes, my lord, why are you asking?” She replied, confusion leaking out from each of her words.
“Let me tell you a quick story,” I said, staring at a painting of me on a desert planet while slaying a giant worm. “Once upon a time, there was a being called the Painter. They had enormous power that reality warped and bent to their will.”
“The Painter created galaxies, stars, and the universe's physical rules using mana.
“Okay, what are you trying to get at?” She asked, looking at me skeptically.
“Well, the Painter created the mortal races and the celestials,” I continued, looking out the window and seeing the beautiful scene of my subjects living their lives. “The Rulers did what most mortals thought impossible; we became gods.”
“The guardians hated that “lesser” creatures could reach godhood despite coming from the same being. Their false sense of superiority led to this bloody conflict.” I finished my rant.
“My lord, but what about the other celestials? Why haven't they tried to end this war? ” she asked, her eyes wandering, trying to match me.
“Because whoever loses, the rest of the celestials will swoop in like vultures,” I responded to her, sitting down on my throne, “now please leave. I have to plan my trip to Earth.”
She bowed and walked out of the throne room, leaving me in almost complete darkness, the only light coming from the moonlight.