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147 Terrorists

    (A/N: The starting of this chapter heavily relies on a certain flashback from Chapter 105).

    Alice wiped her face with water and sat down on the outskirts of the lake. She closed her eyes and allowed her body to recover on its own.

    Slowly her face regained the original color as the effects of backlash dwindled.

    The middle-aged man, on the other, patiently stood behind her waiting for her orders.

    "Is he from the slums?" Alice asked after a few minutes of deep contemplation.

    "Ah...yes," The middle-aged man was startled by her question.

    Just half an hour when Zed reached the villa, the middle-aged man has gathered a quick report on Zed through the influence of his family.

    While he knew Zed was from the slums thanks to the report, he didn't expect her to ask such a question.

    Does she know something?

    "Now it makes sense," Alice's teenage face has a look of understanding, "He has to be the one Marina mentioned."

    Marina?!

    The middle-aged man was startled. Marina was one of the younger seedlings in the family just like Alice so he knew about her.

    While Marina lacked the aptitude rivaling Alice, she was proficient enough in using her ability to check the Strings of Fate.

    Marina was now in her late twenties but yet she would be no match for fifteen years old Alice.

    "Around ten years ago, Marina's brother harmed a slum dweller when the latter tried to request for food," Alice remembered the details she has heard, "Marina checked that slum dweller's Strings of Fate for enjoyment."

    "She didn't face a backlash like you?" The middle-aged man asked.

    Ten years ago, Marina should be 18-19 so her ability should be lacking compared to Alice.

    "No," Alice shook her head, "Maybe that guy was young or perhaps because he has not awakened his powers, but whatever the reason, there was no trouble for Marina."

    "What did she found out?" The middle-aged man enquired. For Marina to share the details of the encounter, he believed it has to be something important.

    "Sea of blood," Alice answered with a rare expression of fear on her face, "His Strings connected him to the strongest of the world, but wherever he Strings stretched, there would be carnage of the powerful."

    "This..."

    The middle-aged man was petrified by the words.

    Such dreadful fate?!

    The Fate was neither an illusory religious concept nor spiritual, but rather a natural law.

    The universe, from its very inception, was governed by a few intangible laws which coexisted together.

    Space, time, fate and a few others formed a set of intangible concepts on which the very universe existed.

    Fate, different from the other laws, determined the development of every existence in the world. It didn't matter whether the existence in regard was a living being, a planet, a star, or even a galaxy.

    The Fate ensured everything that has a start has a definite end. One might be able to delay the inevitable but can never escape from it.

    No matter which road one takes in the life, the destination would always be the same: Death.

    This was Fate.

    "That young man's fate would lead to the carnage of the powerful?!" The middle-aged man's back was drenched with cold sweat.

    "Yes," Alice nodded her head, "The rules of the family states we never stain our fate with people like him."

    A person with such fortunes would never meet their end before the Fate dictates. It didn't matter how grim the situation turned since they wouldn't die before their time.

    "I understand," The middle-aged man knew the extent Sovereigness Parcae believed in the concept of Fate.

    "But I have already stained my fate with him," Alice thought with a helpless smile, "I could never change that."

    -----

    Two days later.

    Evening.

    Delta Mayoral Office occupied a twenty storied building in the central district. The outside premises were heavily guarded with the top echelons of the society entering the building.

    Every visitor pressed on the nineteenth-floor switch in the elevator. The elevator door opened to a large hall which was currently used to host a party.

    There were around thirty tables in the hall with overhead décor consisting of chandeliers and dangling orchids.  The candelabra centerpiece on the tables were filled with roses twisting around them.

    Felicity was sitting around a table with her chin resting on her hands. She sighed as glanced at the guests arriving in the hall.

    Most of them were new government officials who have arrived just a few days ago. There were even members from the investigative teams.

    "The new arrivals are the backup for the investigators," Felicity thought of the information her father has shared, "Supposedly most of them are part of government's secret forces."

    "Felicity," Her father - Patrick- called out her from behind.

    Felicity stood up and walked to her father.

    "Where is Celo?" Patrick enquired about her brother.

    "He should be on the lower floors," Felicity answered.

    "I see," Patrick took a sip from a glass of wine before continuing, "Are you having fun?"

    "Nope," Felicity clearly expressed her views, " I wish I was feeling sick like mom and skip this gathering."

    "...I remember I have to meet the mayor," Patrick turned around and left.

    He knew it better than anyone the personality of his daughter.

    "Zed, you have my sympathies," Patrick thought as he moved to a private room connecting to the hall.

    Felicity sighed in disappointment and sat down on the chair. She looked around the room and noticed everyone having fun except for hers.

    She was never a party animal, and she hated such events. If not for her brother's insistence, she wouldn't even be here.

    "I should have brought Zed here," Felicity thought. She hated how she was forced to give up her plans for trips with him just due to this party.

    The party went on with people dancing and eating the best dishes the money can afford in the city.

    The investigators and the new backup forces stood around each other in an informal gathering.

    "We have to catch that masked terrorist first," Liam said to his friends. As the chief investigator, he felt ashamed to let that man still be free.

    "There were earlier traces of the terrorists but now it is like they have disappeared in the air," A woman colleague remarked.

    "Most likely they have inside information," Liam guessed.

    "Guess so," Another officer agreed.

    "There are far too many tasks in the city," Liam released a long breath, "We have zero progress on the golden lightning phenomenon."

    "The pressure is building up on all of us," The female colleague from before added.

    "Yeah," Liam nodded.

    CRASH~!

    The sound of glass crashing on the floor reverberated in the room.

    "Hmm?"

    Suddenly, everyone's attention moved to the center of the hall.

    A waiter was on his knees with pieces of glass and tray in front of him. The floor was filled with cocktails and juices.

    "Are you all right?" A woman in a red dress moved forward to help seeing no activities from the waiter.

    The waiter turned his head above, and when the woman saw his face, she stopped.

    "W-what happened to you?" The woman muttered as other people moved towards her and waiter.

    Felicity, who was sitting some distance away, noticed the sudden silence in the hall. She left her chair to check the situation when she noticed a waitress dashing towards her direction.

    "Huh?" Felicity glanced at her face and she was deeply startled.

    The waitress has faint blue runic patterns on her face. In the span of seconds, the runes turned dark blue.

    The runes were like patches moving on her face.

    Felicity felt a deep sense of dreadness from the blue patches. It was like she was a child while the blue patches were a primordial beast.

    Felicity backed away but behind there was a crowd making it hard for her to leave. The others, similarly, noticed the blue patches and almost everyone felt chill down a spine.

    As they thought of leaving, they saw three waiters standing on the exit. The three were trembling and coughing up blood.

    "What's going on?"

    "Who are they?"

    "Are they infected with some virus?"

    "No idea."

    The waiter, who was on the floor, lowered his head. The blue runes were stretching out his face like a balloon on verge of explosion.

    "S-save me," the waiter begged in a low voice, "I don't want to die."

    The waitress, on the other hand, has a frenzy expression on her face as she arrived in front of Felicity and others.

    "You rich and powerful are responsible for the current situation of the society," The waitress shouted, "But now this would stop."

    Far behind, the three waiters at the exit also shouted as the guards arrived to take them away.

    "Time has come for you to pay for your sins," A waiter at the exit stretched his hands, "There would be no escape from judgment."

    "Long live the revolution!" the waiters shouted in unison.

    Felicity and others were alarmed by the words.

    "Terrorists!"

    "Damn! Same happened in Sakura city!"

    "Run!"

    The entire hall was in chaos with people running around. Everyone wanted to have a safe distance away from the terrorists.

    The investigators and the backup forces, on the other hand, were more terrified than the others for they were privy to secret intelligence reports.

    "Could they have been injected with those nanites?!" Liam's face turned ghastly pale as he dashed away.

    "Fuck! We have to escape!"

    "There is no escape!" The waitress laughed crazily as her aura rose up with her body inflating like a balloon.

    The blue patches seethed in excitement as they reached every part of her body, eagerly awaiting the moment of their release.

    BOOM!

    The waitress exploded in a blue mushroom cloud decorated with fragments of blood.

    Felicity's heard jolted as she sensed the mushroom cloud nearing her.

    "There is no time," She gritted her teeth and crossed her hands in front of her. Her pupils turned green and faint green ripples radiated out from her body.

    Swoosh~

    A cocoon made from a dozen layers of vines surrounded her.

    Simultaneously, in the other parts of the hall, the other waiters similarly exploded into blue mushroom clouds.

    The explosion swept throughout the hall destroying everything in their path...
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