When Rhode opened the bedroom, the first thing to come into his view was Lilian’s thin, pale face . She wore thin pajamas, hugging her knees and curling up on the bed . She stared at the floor in a daze . No one knew what exactly she was thinking about . Or perhaps, she wasn’t thinking of anything . Christie and Bell accompanied her, but Rhode didn’t count on them to enlighten Lilian . At such a down period, it was always better to have someone by her side . If Lilian were all alone, the crazy thoughts could even lead her to commit suicide . Christie and Bell turned to the opening door and stood up after seeing Rhode .
They went up to him, while Rhode gazed at them . He stroked their hair and asked, “How is Lilian?”
They didn’t speak, but Rhode had gotten his answer . Lilian continued to hug her knees on the bed, totally unaware of his arrival . She was like a sculpture, unresponsive to anything in the outside world . Rhode knitted his brows before smiling at the two little girls .
“Thanks for your help, Christie, Bell . Go and have a good rest . Leave the rest to us . ”
Christie and Bell nodded, before looking at Lilian worriedly for the final time and leaving the room . Thereafter, Rhode led Sonia into the room . Sonia felt strangely complicated as soon as she saw Lilian . She exchanged looks with Rhode, went up to Lilian, and extended her hand .
Lilian shivered abruptly upon hearing Sonia’s voice . She looked up and the desolate pair of eyes reflected the image of Sonia . Her lifeless pupils gradually glinted like flares emerging in darkness . She raised her trembling right arm and reached for the young lady before her slowly . Then, she gripped Sonia’s clothes .
“It’s me, Your Majesty . You…”
Before Sonia finished her sentence, Lilian immediately pounced into her embrace and wailed . She buried her head into Sonia’s chest and whimpers came shortly after . Sonia presented a gentle smile, stretching her hand out to stroke Lilian’s hair .
“I’m… sorry… Sonia . If it weren’t for me…”
“It’s alright, Your Majesty . It’s all in the past . Everything is over . Don’t cry…”
Sonia consoled softly as she continued to caress the little girl’s long hair . Rhode stood aside, watching their moving reunion when suddenly, he twitched his brows . He finally understood why Lilian was so attached to Sonia . Perhaps this little fella had unknowingly treated Sonia as her mother . After all, the two archangels treated Lilian ordinarily, while Sonia accompanied her all day long . From morning when Lilian got out of bed to nighttime before sleep, Sonia was always by her side . For Lilian who had no parents, perhaps Sonia was the only kin she yearned for . Even though Rhode and Lydia treated Lilian well too, they had their own matters to attend to, after all, and couldn’t possibly accompany her all day . Judging from this angle, it wasn’t hard to understand why Sonia occupied such an important place in Lilian’s heart .
As for Sonia…
Rhode gazed at the young lady and suddenly realized that she had a unique temperament that she didn’t possess when she was with him . Could it be the so-called ‘motherly halo’? Sonia wouldn’t have treated and raised Lilian as her daughter, right? To be able to raise a Light Dragon… from a certain aspect, Sonia was truly impressive .
After a few moments, Lilian finally calmed her emotions under Sonia’s consoles . She sobbed, pulling herself away from Sonia’s embrace and shyly peered at Rhode who stood at the side . Lilian didn’t ask how Sonia was resurrected as she had heard the news from the church . But even so, she couldn’t forgive herself . This had something to do with her emotions . After all, no matter what, her stubbornness led to Sonia’s death and she couldn’t possibly think that it was no big deal for Sonia to die since she could be resurrected . If she did, she would really be a nasty brat .
“Thank you, Big Brother Rhode . ”
After a few moments, Lilian and Sonia separated from each other . The little girl wiped her red, teary eyes and thanked Rhode for his help . Rhode looked at her in silence, before shaking his head .
“It’s nothing . This is my duty . ”
Rhode wasn’t lying . In fact, this was indeed his duty at every level . But this time, he didn’t visit Lilian to watch their touching reunion . To Lilian, Sonia was the key that allowed her to step out of her enclosed mind . But eventually, she still needed Rhode to be responsible in leading the way .
“What do you intend to do next, Lilian?”
Lilian’s smile dwindled, instantly returning to the vacant expression from before . She lowered her head silently . After a while, she let out a long sigh .
“I don’t care anymore, Big Brother Rhode . I don’t want to care about anything anymore . Just let them be…”
“Is this fine?”
“… Yes, Big Brother Rhode . I no longer wish to care about them . Since they never needed me, I won’t need them too . I don’t care about the future of the Country of Light anymore . Why must I protect them when they never know what gratitude is? In this case, they’re free to do whatever they like . ”
This was the first time Rhode heard such ‘willful’ words from Lilian . It could be seen that she was in despair and had given up all hope . If not, she wouldn’t have said such things . Fortunately, Rhode found a loophole behind her disorganized sentences .
“Is this really fine?”
“Big Brother Rhode?”
Lilian felt a little strange when Rhode asked again patiently . She lifted her head and looked at him blankly . Upon sensing her gaze, Rhode stared back .
“You’re aware of the situation in the Light Mainland; they are suffering from natural and human disasters . The thieves are using this chance to plunder and rob, while the people will suffer agony and eventually die… Is this what you really want?”
“Once humans are dead, there will be nothing left, Lilian, be it pain or hatred, no matter what they experienced right before death . But after they are dead, they will be free from the agony . Are you willing to let them off freely? No, Lilian, the biggest punishment for them will be using their fears against them . I think you’re aware of what the Country of Light is most afraid of, right?”
Lilian nodded quietly . Of course, she knew what the Country of Light was most afraid of . This was also why she faced such a situation . It was also due to this reason that she didn’t do anything about it in the past . But now, why was Rhode telling her all this?
“Death isn’t a punishment for them . Instead, it is a relief, Lilian . ”
Rhode stepped forth while staring straight into Lilian’s eyes .
“Haven’t you ever considered why such situations happen only in the Country of Light? If the Country of Darkness consists of mostly the obedient dead, what would it be for the Country of Law and my Void Territory? Taking a step back, how about the Munn Kingdom and Lydia? There were people who provoked her authority, but did she back down? What you’ve experienced isn’t powerlessness . Instead, it is that you’re weak . Lilian, your weakness boosts their aggression . Your backing down left them wanting more and becoming arrogant . Haven’t you ever considered why they are afraid? Because they knew that they don’t deserve everything they’ve done . They are afraid that you will snatch everything away from them one day and this is the source of their fear . And now, all you need to do is to not free them, but make them live in constant, shivering fear and pay for their greed and foolishness using their lives and the lives of their descendants . ”
Rhode spoke and extended his arm to Lilian . Lilian stared foolishly at his hand . Her eyes slowly turned clearer, more distinct, and a shapeless flame started burning within .
“Are you ready, Lilian? This path is harder to choose than death . I won’t talk about the peace and danger of the continent because they are meaningless to you . So, are you willing to use this other method to return everything that they’ve brought upon you?”
Lilian pondered in silence . Then, she extended her arm and held Rhode’s hand . She lifted her head, her eyes glinting with determination and rage .
“Yes . I’m willing, Big Brother Rhode . ”