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384 Abrupt Vision, Angelises Mysterious Origins

 Day 60 - 11:35 AM - General's Residence, North District, Bay City Settlement, Pasay City, Metro Manila

The answers Angelise gave Mark were unsatisfactory. Nevertheless, there was nothing he could do about it if she did not know anything. It was not her fault.

About the locket, Mark received it without expecting too much. This locket which should have been able to tell her origins, but she remained oblivious about anything.

Looking at the locket, however, Mark was frozen in shock.

Without noticing Mark's expression, Angelise started speaking.

"You see... My Dad and Mom. My parents that adopted me weren't able to bear a child. Mom had a problem with her body. It's a pity because they are rich and can't have an heir. That is why they looked for a child to adopt, and that's me."

She sighed.

"Like most orphans, I was happy. Dad and Mom were also kind and treated me like their own child. But it did not last too long. They died in an accident when I was nineteen. That is when I had the urge to look for my real parents using that locket. I failed, unfortunately. No one can even open that locket without destroying it. It's even questionable if that is possible."

Angeline looked at Mark. That was when she noticed that something was wrong as Mark's expression was too solemn while staring at her locket.

"Is something wrong?"

She asked. However, Mark did not reply. Nevertheless, she was rather surprised herself.

It was because...

Mark's eyes were glowing with a deep purple color.

***

Mark stared at the locket with his expression going serious from shock.

The locket looked like it was old. An antique preserved for a very long time. He could not tell what kind of metal this locket was made, but for sure, it was something very sturdy.

Of course, the most pressing part of it was the crest carved on the cover of the locket.

It was a sea serpent with wings winding around a trident. The wings of the serpent were slanted. The wing on the right lower than the left and the head of the serpent was in front of the base of the trident's prongs.

Without a doubt, this crest belonged to the royal family of the lost civilization. The lost civilization that was the ancestors of the residents of Eriellis.

Mark caressed the head as the sentiments Freed left inside him flowed.

Unexpectedly, scenes passed by his eyes.

***

It was the night of a snowstorm. Two people wearing robes could be seen frantically running inside a snow-covered forest. They wore white robes that blended with the white snow. One of the two was carrying something covered with a thick cloth. By the shape of the cloth, it was very likely to be an infant.

From the manner the two ran despite the thick snow, they were being chased. The two kept looking behind them from time to time. Luckily, the snowstorm immediately covered their tracks delaying the ones chasing them.

"Meririo we can't keep this up! Ellicea will freeze to death!"

The person carrying the infant worriedly spoke. From the voice, the person was a female and it was easy to tell that she was the mother of this child.

While she was talking, the strong blow of the wind knocked off her hood revealing a beautiful woman with bright golden hair. As she was carrying the infant with both hands, she struggled to cover her head once more.

The other person immediately helped her.

"We have no choice Ronellia. If they caught us, not only we will be executed but our daughter will be put into their experiments."

Hearing that, Ronellia lamented.

"Just why do we have to be descendants of those deserters..."

"There is nothing we can do about it. It had been an accident. We just need to leave this place."

"No, if we took too long, it will be late for Ellicea. I don't mind dying, but at least, she..."

As they continued, Ronellia saw a silhouette of building from afar.

At the same time, Meririo suddenly turned his head behind with a serious expression.

"Ronellia, they are coming closer."

He said even though there was no one in sight.

"What should we do?!"

"Let us check that building. We should at least hide Ellicea."

Hearing that, Ronellia nodded without hesitation.

When they saw the sign in front of the building, they felt relieved to some extent. It was an orphanage.

"I'll seal her first. We should make sure that they won't find her."

Ronellia said in which Meririo nodded.

"Sorry, my daughter, but we have to do this. We will return if we could. If not, I wish you a happy life."

Ronellia set the infant down in front of the door removed the part that covered Ellicea's face to see her one last time.

There, the sleeping infant with golden blond hair could be seen.

After kissing the infant's forehead with affection, Ronellia started while Meririo kept on the lookout.

The mother stretched out both her hands onto the chest of the infant and a small circle of light with many symbols appeared. It was, no doubt, a magic circle.

As Ronellia sealed the infant, Ellicea's hair darkened and from her bright golden blonde hair, it turned into a pale yellowish color.

When the sealing finished, Ronellia frantically knocked on the door to be sure that she would be heard from the inside. When the two parents sensed that there was someone coming, they hid.

There, they saw a nun open the door and with shock, picked up Ellicea. The nun then tried to look around but saw no one. She looked at the infant with pitiful eyes as she entered the orphanage once more.

Seeing that expression of the nun, both Meririo and Ronellia were relieved. They then ran. Not to escape but to lead their pursuers in a different direction.

As they ran away, Meririo noticed.

"You left you locket?"

"I did. If the worst came, in the least, I don't want her to think that we didn't love her."

Hearing that, Meririo smiled.

"Should we do this?"

"Yes."

Finishing that conversation, a magic circle appeared under the feet of the two before they moved in inhumane speed. This speed was not something an infant would be able to handle.

While they were moving fast, it would also make them easily noticeable by their enemies. And that was what they wanted.

Soon, they saw the enemies gaining on them. There were about a dozen of them wearing the same kind of robe but with a gray color.

***

Mark felt a shake on his shoulder. He returned to reality too abruptly that he felt a bit dizzy. As sweat trickled from his forehead, he felt a soft cloth wiping his face.

Looking around, Mei, Angeline, and Paula were already here. Angelise was still on the bed looking at him worriedly. It seemed that she called for the three because of what happened to Mark.

"Hey, what happened to you? You scared us you know?"

Angeline complained. It was her who shook his shoulders, apparently.

"Are you okay? Is there something wrong with my locket?"

Angelise worriedly asked. She was scared and did not know what to do. All she was able to do was to call out for her daughter.

Hearing those questions, Mark shook his head and returned the locket.

"Nothing happened. It's just my body acting up. Being strong could also mean repercussions."

That statement of his made Paula stiffen. Nevertheless, since she stood behind Angeline, she saw Mark's hand giving her signals not to say anything. She could only nod stealthily.

"Thank you for answering my questions, but we should be going."

Mark stood up from his seat.

"Is that so? I wish you two can eat lunch with us."

Angelise sounded disappointed.

"Sorry, but my little girls would sulk if we ate lunch without them."

Mark said an alibi which was also true.

Angelise looked at Mei and the latter also nodded.

Without any choice, Angelise gave up. Of course, she still told the two to drop by sometime.

As they left the room, Mark said one last sentence to Angelise before leaving.

"Keep that locket with you at all times. It's important so remember that."

He did not wait for a reply and turned around while muttering.

"Ellicea..."

***

Leaving the room, Angeline was left behind to take care of her mother while Paula escorted the two.

"What are you hiding?"

Paula asked Mark.

"I won't deny that I'm hiding something but I won't tell you."

Mark shrugged his shoulders.

"Why? It should be about Aunt Angelise, right? Shouldn't she know about it? You're staring at that locket."

"If I said that its a matter of life and death of her, will you stop asking?"

Mark replied nonchalantly. However, Paula froze. No matter how nonchalant Mark was when saying that, she knew that he was not lying.

"Okay, I won't ask anymore."

Paula gave up.

"Yeah, that's better. Maybe, I'll tell her in the future if we met again. At least not now."

***

Leaving the residence with Mei, Mark's mind was filled with thoughts.

Angelise was in no doubt, a descendant of the same race of Freed's ancestors. Their branch was probably among those that stayed behind and survived the calamity. That scene where Mark saw Ronellia's hair, it was the color of hair that was within the bloodline of Freed's mother. No wonder now why Angelise looked like Freed's mother. It was because of either her genes or bloodline.

Two more facts bothered Mark the most.

Due to the language barrier, Mark could not understand what Ronellia and Meririo were saying. Nevertheless, he could understand their context and read their expressions to some extent.

Nevertheless, that barrier did not mask two obvious things.

Angelise's parents were not normal humans, even she was very likely. As displayed by the scenes he saw, they could be either witches or western mages. Although some eastern mages were also known for rituals with magic circles, the style he saw were more apparent in western lores.

The most bothering thing, however, was not their ancestral descent or their abilities.

Those robes were not all new to Mark.

Who would have thought that Angelise's parents had direct involvement with Auraboros? In fact, that style and color of robes meant that they were among the central members. They could have been members but they probably defected from the organization.

And the reason for their desertion was Angelise herself.

While thinking those, Mark scratched his head. If he wanted more answers, he needed to confront Auraboros. Furthermore, he was abruptly woken up from his vision which surely made him miss more important details.

"Gege, can I ask something?"

Mei spoke.

"Sure, what is it?"

"Is that locket something special?"

Mark smiled. Of course, she would be curious since he said those words before they left.

"That locket is sealed."

"Sealed? Not locked?"

"You immediately caught my wordplay, huh."

Mark shrugged. Sometimes, the silent Mei was rather too smart.

"Yeah, that's right. It won't open until her life is truly in danger. It's probably what kept her alive after what happened to her."

"I see. So it's like a life-saving amulet."

"To some extent, yes." Mark nodded. "Once that locket fully opened, however, she should start counting her days I guess..."

Those words made Mei confused but Mark did not say anything else.

***

Once that locket opened, she will receive the legacy of her mother. Once that happened, however, it would be easier for Auraboros to find her.

It was unfortunate that she was the wife of the General leading Bay City. If not, he would invite her to his base. He would really want someone like her to be one of his people. He already had some odd creatures so having another was not a problem.

He already had a beef with Auraboros. If Angelise knew the truth, she might likely join the fray in order to find the truth about her parents.

Unfortunately, it was not the case.

Still, Mark never thought that his [Clairvoyance] would activate as such instance. Maybe, the force sealing the locket affected him and gave him the vision. He would not receive the answer that easily though.