“So, what exactly is going on?” Ovina was still half-kneeling on the ground, with one hand rubbing her arm. She asked the question with a frown. The girl’s energy-made body looked like it was made of platinum and there was a half-transparent ring around her irises. Only when they contracted slightly did you know what she was thinking -- and she was very angry right now.
“It’s quite simple, really .” Brendel said while sporting a toothy smile. His voice echoed in the dark and sounded a bit mischievous. He suddenly raised his hand and put it behind Scarlet, pushing the girl who had been standing in the shadows with her head hanging to stand in front of him. “Lady Ovina, you must have heard the legend of the Elf’s Golden Apple?”
Scarlet seemed ill at ease. She looked back in surprise at her leader, but Brendel shook his head and indicated that she needn’t be so nervous. He did this in the hopes of leaving Ovina with a stronger impression of Scarlet. Because Ovina must choose the Azure Lance’s next master from the three of them. He was much better at using the sword and Williman’s identity and profession also rendered him unsuitable as the heir to the Azure Lance. Therefore, he would much rather Ovina choose Scarlet as the heir to the Azure Lance.
Scarlet had always stood behind him, as silent as a shadow. Even though Scarlet filled his heart with tenderness, but that was precisely why Brendel wanted the young girl to understand that in this world, there were humble origins. Even a country girl from Bucce could become many people’s hope and protector at some time.
Only confidence and hard work were the driving forces behind the advancement of civilization and law.
Ovina looked Scarlet over carefully. Ovina’s pupils were like burning platinum embers and her eyebrows were like flames. She frowned slightly, “The Matter of Admiration?” She closed her eyes and lightly sniffed, “So that’s it. That is indeed the residue unique to elves. Valuerian Elves have been studying for so long how to change destiny. I didn’t realize they had made it come true. But they can only interrupt the rule. It’s still ineffective against chaos… I was too rash.”
Ovina quietly said a string of senseless words, and then opened her eyes again to look at Scarlet and then back at Brendel. “I heard her call you leader, is she your subordinate?”
“Crap.” Brendel thought Ovina was out for revenge so he hurriedly explained, “I guess so.”
“Guess so?” Ovina looked suspiciously at Brendel and her voice dragged out slightly.
Brendel mused for a bit and then quickly organized his thoughts. “Probably because I helped Scarlet when was in a tough spot. So theoretically, Scarlet is with me as a guard. Of course, you can see this as me holding something over her to get her to obey me. But no matter how you cut it, the contract between us will last until she believes she’s returned the favor --”
“Leader,” Scarlet turned around and called out quietly. Brendel’s self-deprecation clearly made her nervous.
Brendel tried to communicate with her only using his eyes.
Ovina looked at them both in disdain, “How crude. But I didn’t figure you as the kind-hearted type. Even if you want me to acknowledge her, don’t you think it’s a bit unsuitable? It’s not just a matter of her being weak -- because that’s not the point. The point is that she has no desire to be strong. Without confidence and self-awareness, how will she fulfill her own belief? Or maybe she doesn’t even have a clear understanding of what belief is. Giving her the Azure Lance will just ruin me.”
She stared at Scarlet, who silently lowered her head.
And then Ovina turned around and looked at Brendel with a hint of admiration. “But you, though you’re still wrong, you have some potential. Otherwise… that guy wouldn’t have chosen you, right? So don’t tell me you haven’t figured out that there’s something about you that sets you apart from the rest of the world… and it’s because of that ‘something’ that we can now change history. How about it? Do you want to form a pact with me and become the Azure Lance’s new master, human?
Brendel blinked in surprise. He didn’t think Ovina would choose him. But he sighed and shook his head.
“You’re wrong, Lady Ovina. Nobody is born strong and nobody is destined to change the world. But at every moment, everyone is trying to change themselves because of something. As long as there’s something important they need to protect, anyone can become strong. In this world, power has never been an unchanging element of this world.”
“I’ve seen Scarlet furious at the passing of her companions. And it’s because of that anger that I know she can do it - Scarlet, raise your head. You defeated Lady Ovina and you have the same right to be acknowledged by the Azure Lance.” Brendel commanded firmly.
Scarlet shivered and bit her lips while she looked up at Brendel. She knew that was the legendary Azure Lance, the brightest of items in legends. Her Royal Highness, Leader, and even Count Yanbao… there were so many others here who were more qualified than her to pick up the lance that had once shattered the very heavens.
Her Royal Highness was brave, Leader was justice personified, Lady Dilferi was steady and idealistic. Everyone here seemed to be better than she was. The Azure Lance could belong to any of them, but not her.
But even son, there was gratitude in her eyes. That gratitude came from being acknowledged.
Silence spread out in the darkness.
William stood by the three of them. Underneath his silver brows, those wisdom-filled eyes glinted with interest. It was as if none of this mattered to him. He merely brushed the dust away from his sleeves from time to time. As a Mage, he didn’t have much interest in owning the Azure Lance to begin with.
Ovina let out an involuntary groan and muttered something like how she couldn’t believe she had been defeated by such a little girl. She glanced at Brendel with a hint of frustration in her eyes, “You really want her to take the Azure Lance?”
“Is that not allowed?”
“There are many others in the great hall above us that would be more suitable than she is. That half-elf girl, she’s calm and collected under pressure. And the merchant looking little girl that was with you, she has noble blood. And the others, though they’re not as good as them, they’d be much better than her.” Ovina frowned. “I can’t understand your reasoning.”
“I know all of that. But I still think Scarlet is better.”
“You…” the lightning girl spluttered, “The reason?”
“Because she’s ordinary, so she can turn the ordinary into extraordinariness. Long ago, the Azure Knight once used the Holy Lance to shatter the heavens and let the stars fall down. That brought about the age of mortals, Lady Ovina. In the Kirrlutz epic poems, the Azure Lance represents an endless struggle. No matter how humble your existence, there will be a moment when you reach the highest glory.”
“And that’s why there’s excitement in the mortal age.” Brendel slowly answered.
Ovina was momentarily lost for words. She glared at Brendel.
The sound of clapping finally rang. William gently clapped his hands and answered, “Nicely said. The Silver and Golden ages have gone by. In the end, mortals must control their own destiny. Lady Ovina, honestly speaking none of us present have the right to inherit the Azure Lance. But in comparison, maybe coincidence is Marsha’s will in destiny?”
“This… fine. I understand.”
Ovina sighed and then stopped up from the ground. She looked at Scarlet and reached out her hand. “You’re lucky, little girl. Come, reach out your hand and let me see what you’re thinking.”
Scarlet hesitated and turned around to look at Brendel. But Brendel only gave her a slight nod.
“Yes.” The Highlander girl finally gathered up all her courage. She bit her lip and then reached out to put her hand in the middle of Ovina’s palm.
Ovina closed her eyes and her dagger-like brows finally relaxed. For the first time, a peaceful expression came over her face.
“So that’s your past. It’s a lot better than I thought.”
“It’s just a momentary stumble, not an excuse to become weak. The Azure Lance is a blade to protect the world, Scarlet -- piercing the heavens and letting the stars tumble, that’s the history of mortals conquering destiny. Can you sense the amount of courage it took to do that?”
“You want to protect?” Ovina suddenly asked.
And then there was a brief silence.
Scarlet didn’t answer. But after a while, Ovina suddenly opened her eyes. She turned around to look at Brendel without an explanation. Those platinum eyes contained something special that gave Brendel a pause.
But when he looked over again, Ovina had once again closed her eyes.
“Open your heart and accept me, Scarlet --” Ovina chanted.
“From this day forward, till the end of time.” Scarlet repeated.
“So may it be!”
A column of white light and a ring of azure light scattered from the darkness. As if there was an invisible breeze, the Highlander girl’s hair floated in midair. Scarlet suddenly let out a sound of surprise as she was Ovina turn into the purest white light in front of her and float into her chest.
Everyone saw this --
Out of everyone, only Sir Makarov who was still bound to the wall by the lightning cage had a complicated look on his face. He would probably never understand why Brendel would give up the chance to form a pact with the Azure Lance and instead, hand this legendary divine artifact to his not-so-outstanding adoptive daughter.
The Royal Highness Princess frowned but then quickly came to terms with herself.
Dilferi was curious and the merchant girl, still trapped in the web of lightning, was probably the happiest out of them all. It’s not that Ovina gave her special treatment, it’s that the merchant girl was too naughty and her bag full of the Mage Queen’s inheritance was nothing to sneeze at.
Even so, Romaine still said cheerfully said to White Mist, who was by her shoulders, “I knew Scarlet would be the most suited for it! I even had a bet with Brendel last night. Scarlet is the only one of us to use a lance, right? That ‘me’ is really stubborn, not smart like me. I guessed the outcome immediately.”
“Scarlet is so suited to that lance! It’s so pretty! When I have time, I’m definitely going to have to borrow it to play with!”
White Mist yawned and didn’t have the motivation to answer her or to remind the merchant girl that Lady Medissa was also a lance user. While Medissa was an Elite Elf, White Mist doubted Romaine had even thought that far.
On the other side, in the darkness, after the countless light beams faded, Ovina has turned into a thousand bolts of lightning before unifying into one. When the light faded, there was just a bright lance left.
Upon closer examination, it was the Holy Lance of Heaven.
Scarlet stood in a daze, holding the lance the color of faded green jade. She hadn’t finished processing, “Lady… Ovina?”
The Holy Lance in her hand buzzed.
“That’s her.” Brendel walked up and examined the legendary holy lance closely. “Ovina is the manifestation of the Holy Lance. But your powers are still a bit weak, so you probably have a hard time sensing her existence right now.”
As he was saying this, he looked up. Without Ovina’s powers, the lightning cages keeping every trapped in the great hall dissipated one by one. The remaining magic helped everyone descend slowly to the ground until they landed not far from Brendel, Scarlet, and William.
The merchant girl was the first to land and she immediately called out happily, “Brendel!” and ran to meet them.
“Mr. Brendel.” Gradually Medissa, Ciel, Freya, and Princess Gryphine all gathered around the three of them. Of course, without exception, everyone’s glance landed immediately upon the Holy Lance in Scarlet’s hands.
That was the weapon in the ancient myths that had pierced the heavens.
Romane couldn’t help but blink and ask curiously, “Brendel, is this lance really that powerful?”
Is this lance really that powerful?
Without a doubt, that’s the question on everyone’s mind, including Brendel. He thought momentarily and then walked up to put his hand on the blade of the Azure Lance in Scarlet’s hand. Scarlet stopped for a moment and then looked at him in confusion, “Leader…?”
Brendel didn’t immediately respond. He already saw a pale green screen extend outwards from the blade.
Holy Lance of Heaven
+45 Power, +45 Dexterity, +45 Stamina, +45 Bloodline, + 45 Perception
Destiny: Legend that has immersed itself on the blade through the passage of time. A curse upon its opponent like an unchanging destiny. Any target struck by the holy lance will continue bleeding through the wound due to an endless curse. Does 11 damage per second. Damage is stackable.
Heaven: Pure wind elemental surrounding the blade. The wielder of the blade can summon the power of thunder and lightning. With every attack, the wielder can mimic the power of thunder and lightning and cause equivalent damage to enemies in any direction. The number of lightning depends on the magical abilities of the user.
Divine Artifact Power:
Indefeasible Destiny: A formless power protecting the holy lance. Any enemy with powers less than the wielder of the lance will have their attacks reduced by 90%. (The power to change destiny can negate this effect.)
Brendel squinted his eyes as he scanned these lines of abilities.