"Hello, Mister Adamrys!" Angelina's greeting shocked everyone. It was her first time meeting a high-ranked major monster, but she wasn't frightened at all and approached him calmly.
Garcia turned to look at Angelina. Despite being more than 400 years old, she was suddenly curious about this young lady.
The crystal scorpiondrake seemed to be surprised by her greeting as well. But since he had lived for almost a thousand years, his vast experience allowed him to adapt to most situations, this included. He opened his jaw slightly and greeted, "Hello!"
Just as Angelina was staring at these huge monsters while counting the scales on their body, a loud bang was heard. It sounded like something had just crashed onto the ground.
Two dead leopard-like monsters fell from the sky, bloodied all over. A turquoise scorpiondrake was seen in mid-air with his jaw half-opened. Judging from the blood that was dripping from its mouth, the dead monsters were killed by it.
"These two shadow leopards harassed your convoy in Morphey Forest. My apologies for our negligence," said a dull, neutral voice. The light-blue scorpiondrake extended its neck, as if it was the one who had just said that sentence.
"Oh, that wasn't necessary!" said Angelina. The bloody scene in front of her made her a little nauseous. She could tell that they were the mid-ranked monsters that harassed her convoy. They were chased away by the shadow guards' jarl, Lane, at that time.
"Are you alright?" At this moment, Garcia, who had been watching Angelina, walked towards her and caressed her hair.
Romm was very surprised by Garcia's sudden behaviour. The muscles in his right arm tensed up as he held his sword. He knew how important the princess was to the king. Her forceful invitation on behalf of the Aomar Empire to invite Angelina to study abroad had crossed the line and had already reached the limits of the king's patience. If she did anything that would harm the princess, the Faustian king would definitely be furious.
Romm was being paranoid. Garcia, who was old enough to be Angelina's great-great-grandmother, couldn't possibly harm such a cute young lady. With a wave of her arm, the bloody scene and scent in front of her vanished.
Locke, who was very near to Angelina, didn't know what just happened. The two leopard carcasses had just disappeared out of thin air. He didn't sense any spells being used, so this couldn't be done through the use of spatial gear.
"Thank you, pretty lady!" Angelina smiled and thanked Garcia.
Garcia was surprised at first. She then smiled and removed her helmet, revealing her long maroon hair and pleasant-looking face. After that, she stepped forward and gave Angelina a hug.
"What a smart and cute girl you are." Garcia pinched the tip of Angelina's nose softly and Angelina giggled. The significantly elder woman and the young lady were goofing around in front of a group of shadow guards and an entire family of high-ranked major monsters.
Romm kept fidgeting while touching his chin. He couldn't believe what he was seeing.
In the end, it was Adamrys that broke the awkward atmosphere. As the host and owner of Morphey Forest, it had to show power and authority, though, it was possible that it wouldn't win a fight against Romm or Garcia even if it fought together with his wife and children.
But this was just how monsters were. There were few weak major monsters, so those that managed to reach the high rank valued each and every one of their own.
"Now that we've already apologised to Angelina, we shall next talk about..." said Adamrys as he wagged his tail. Unlike the other major monsters, this scorpiondrake lord liked to wag his tail while talking.
"Wait a second!" Garcia interrupted, causing Adamrys to stare at her with his yellow pupils. She then continued, "This isn't enough to compensate my baby Angelina!"
Adamrys blinked. He didn't understand what she meant.
Angelina, who Garcia held tightly, looked uncomfortable. It had been a long time since someone last called her a baby. She pouted, obviously not pleased with being babied.
"What present do you want?" asked Garcia in a pampered manner as she kissed her on the cheek.
Angelina's eyes lit up immediately and started thinking despite Garcia having left traces of her saliva on her face. Suddenly, her eyes landed on a crystal scorpiondrake.
It stood behind its mother along with its other siblings while staring blankly into space. Although they were only base-ranked major monsters, their intelligence was already equivalent to an adult human's and they could match peak-level Knechts. The only downside was their beastlike habits and behaviour.
Crystal scorpiondrakes usually slept in the dark and damp caves at this time of the day. It was probably tired. Its turquoise scales shimmered under the sun, capturing Angelina's attention.
"I want that big guy!" Angelina hugged Garcia's and pointed at the sleepy scorpiondrake joyfully.
Angelina's request made everyone's jaws drop. It was the first time in decades that Garcia felt surprised. She thought that Angelina would ask for some glistening crystal cores or something.
"Are you sure?" asked Garcia.
"Yes!" replied Angelina excitedly. "Look at how cute it is! I want to keep it as my pet!" said Angelina as she pointed at the scorpiondrake that was dozing off.
Cute? Pet? Everyone thought that she was being absurd. Who on earth would find a turquoise scorpiondrake cute? It had countless spikes on its body and a poisonous stinger!
"Well, this young lady has a very unique taste!" Garcia chuckled and stroked Angelina's head. She then turned and stared at Adamrys. Her intentions were very clear.
"It's not happening. This is my child!" The light-blue scorpiondrake was the first to react. As the mother, it wouldn't let the child leave its side, though cold-blooded animal it was.
"I don't agree either!" said Adamrys.
"Oh really?" Garcia suddenly unleashed a well-controlled, imposing aura. Angelina, Locke and the shadow guards couldn't feel it even though they were near to her; only the scorpiondrakes were affected by it.
The scorpiondrakes shrieked. They weren't even stage-one lifeforms yet and they couldn't resist the aura of a stage-two Erdritter. If it weren't for their strong physique, they would've probably been knocked down by the powerful aura. Adamrys and its mate howled as they tried their best to resist Garcia's overwhelming force.
Romm looked at the scene in front of him solemnly. Garcia's true strength was far above what he imagined, as was befitting of an Erdritter of her fame. He admitted that he could only last two hundred bouts in a fight with her at the moment before yielding. There was also a big difference in the strengths of stage-two Erdritters.
Garcia seemed outright hostile, with her hand already tapping the longsword at her waist. At this moment, Adamrys suddenly said, "Even if I've agreed to it, it will be difficult for the princess to form a contract with my child given her level!"
After hearing this, Garcia withdrew half of her aura and turned to Angelina. "Baby, your strength is too low now. It'll be too difficult for you to contract a base-ranked major monster."
"Yeah, your mind will turn to mush if you suffer an influx of my child's mental power," added Adamrys. Garcia turned and glared at him. Adamrys didn't dare to continue speaking after this.
After hearing this, Angelina seemed disappointed. She was a Lehrling, so she knew how dangerous it was to contract a beast of a different rank. Garcia could've helped if she was a stage-two caster, but alas that wasn't the case.
After seeing Angelina sulking, Garcia looked at Adamrys and its mate, and turned to the group of scorpiondrakes. She then seemed to have thought of something. "I'm sure you all still have some eggs left, right?"
Adamrys froze. Its mate's tail was trembling—an obvious sign of anger.
Angelina's convoy left Morphey Forest as the sun set, escorted by the shadow guards. The two figures in the sky gradually turned smaller the further they went. They were none other than Romm and Garcia.
Adamrys quietly watched the humans as they left. It stuck out its long and purple-black tongue that was full of spikes and licked its mate. "Don't worry Shiva, our child will be fine."
The light-blue scorpiondrake widened its eyes and stared at the convoy in the distance. It knew that its child was in that carriage through its mental connection with it.
"It'll be okay..." Adamrys' whisper echoed in the forest.
It wasn't Adamrys' intention to hand its seventh child over. As it was only a stage-one major monster, it didn't dare to offend the two Erdritters in this small Morphey Forest, for it risked the lives of the other monsters there. It would only prioritise dignity more than life when it didn't have a choice.
Adamrys had already lived for so many years. Plus, it was forcibly enslaved by the Sanctum when it was young. It knew how terrifying humans could be after meeting the master of Zauberia.
No other major monster knew better than Adamrys to humble themselves before the true elites of the world.
Morphey Forest was destined to be in chaos tonight because the Akanasd family needed a sacrifice of blood to quench their rage at losing one of its members.
In the carriage, Angelina giggled as she held the giant turquoise egg that was half the size of a human in her arms.
"Did you do this on purpose?" asked Locke.
Angelina rolled her eyes at Locke and didn't answer his question.
The carriage travelled further away. A while later, night finally fell.