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504 Hope Is Happy!

    (A/N: Even though the new arc deals with the main plotline, and has serious moments, the story would never lose its main essence. It isn't tragedy so please read without any worries.)

    ...

    Without Kiba realizing, a week passed. Hours turned into days but for him, the time seemed to be at standstill.

    People often complained about newborns, saying they were annoying with their cries and the attention they demanded.

    Kiba begged to differ.

    Hope did cry and scream, but to him, it was never annoying. He only felt pain to see her eyes full of tears and did everything to ensure she didn't have to cry again, though he failed in that again and again.

    ***

    One morning, for the first time, Eva arrived in Dream Rise House. As a confidante of Kiba and being on good terms with Agatha, she paid this visit, bringing gifts for their daughter.

    \"I don't like kids but he does!\"

    Eva thought as she stepped into the living hall.

    \"This still baffles me! Oh well, I only have to feign interest for his and Agatha's sake! How hard it could be?\"

    There inside, she felt the breath of fresh air from the waterfall upon which the villa was partly built.

    \"His design for the villa is impressive,\" Eva mused while scanning the hall.

    Some distance from the waterfall, she discovered Kiba actively involved in Hope's day-to-day upbringing.

    \"!\"

    Eva was surprised.

    Noticing her surprised reaction, Agatha smiled. She explained how he helped in changing diapers, giving baths and cuddling.

    \"Wow~\" Eva exclaimed. \"He is a totally different person!\"

    When she saw Kiba singing a lullaby to Hope, she almost stumbled.

    Was he really the one invoking fear in the men of Delta City!? Could he truly be the infamous rake whose every word provoked even the calmest of men?!

    It was so hard to associate the changes she noticed.

    \"That baby is frightening!\" Eva remarked. \"Defeating the most powerful man with cuteness!\"

    Agatha giggled.

    \"Yeah, she has changed him,\" Agatha agreed. \"And for the better.\"

    Eva nodded.

    At the same time, as Hope listened to the lullaby, she tapped her little hands in the air. Her golden eyes glowed with bright light and strands of lightning erupted on her fingers.

    Zzzt!

    The strands of lightning were as thin as needles, crackling in the air, filling the hall with a dreadful pressure.

    The expressions of everyone drastically changed.

    \"She has awakened?!\" Eva was taken aback.

    Agatha creased her eyebrows in worry.

    [[Lady Hope!]] Claudia was alarmed.

    Kiba was equally astonished. He observed the strands of lightning swirling around her little fingers, feeling them resonate with his powers.

    Hope noticed her father stopping the lullaby. Her hands started dropping to the cradle and in between, the strands of lightning shot out.

    Rushing like bolts of lightning, they crashed down on the waterfall.

    BANG

    The water splashed and the dark rocks burst apart in a deafening blast. And then, like waves of an angry ocean, the pieces of exploded rocks and water droplets splashed into the hall.

    \"Watch out!\"

    Eva warned as she noticed the rock pieces and water droplets flickering with strands of destructive lightning.

    She dissolved her body into a shadow just as a rock piece flew towards her, narrowly missing her, and smashing into the floor behind.

    The titles charred black before turning into flying dust, leaving behind a large hole.

    Kiba took Hope in his arms and then turned towards the wave of incoming rock debris. A single glance from him smashed them into dust.

    Agatha lifted a hand and flicked it outward. The water droplets and rocks rushing in her direction turned illusory, like phantoms, loosing their materialistic characteristics.

    \"Isolate!\"

    The space in the hall divided into two, one in which she and others existed alongside the hall, and in the second, the pieces of rocks and water droplets wrapped with lightning.

    Eva turned into humane form and scanned the hall with a wry smile. The tv, sofa, chairs, and the remaining furniture has been destroyed. Even most of the tiles were smashed into dust particles.

    \"She has definitely inherited his talent in destruction!\" Eva said while eyeing Hope.

    \".....\" Agatha turned towards her daughter with an equally wry smile.

    Kiba looked at his daughter who looked back at him. The glow in her eyes faded but a smile filled her eager face as if she was anticipating praise.

    \"....\"

    Kiba knotted his eyebrows.

    Some distance away, Agatha was worried by his expression. She knew every parent has a limit, and when that limit was crossed, the parent would get angry and punish the child.

    Eva was equally startled. She thought of telling him not to be harsh on the child.

    But then Kiba did something that made their jaw dropped.

    \"You were good,\" Kiba said as he released a strand of lightning and blasted apart the adjacent wall. \"Even better than me.\"

    Hope's eyes sparkled as she saw the mini-explosion, resembling firecrackers. The sight left her fascinated and pleased.

    \"Next time you want to create an explosion, just signal me,\" Kiba said with a warm smile. \"I know many places in the city, inhabited by those I don't like. We could have a real blast there!\"

    His words might be spoken by his mouth, but they entered her mind telepathically, making her understand his intent.

    In response, Hope clapped her little hands happily.

    Claudia: [[....]]

    Agatha: \"........\"

    Eva: \".....\"

    The three women were left speechless.

    [[How irresponsible! Master is turning little lady into a delinquent!]]

    Claudia remarked while ordering the droids to clean up the mess and repair the hall.

    Agatha observed her happy daughter and Kiba for a long time before saying, \"I take back what I said... He has not changed.\"

    \"....\" Eva nodded. \"At least, not for the better.\"

    Kiba left the destroyed hall and stepped into another room. Hope let out a cute yawn and her beautiful eyes closed.

    Kiba smiled. He knew she was exhausted by the use of her powers so he made her asleep.

    Behind, Agatha rubbed her forehead.

    \"God, Hope inheriting his strength is fine... but please, don't let her inherit his devilish personality! If you still have to give his personality to her, give Zed's! Not Kiba's!\"

    Had she known what \"Zed\" did in Desolate Blood Forest, she wouldn't have prayed for that either...

    ***

    On the ninety-third floor White Angel Corporation, Chairman Hank Webley scanned the plan that took him several months to create.

    \"Sir, everything is ready.\"

    His secretary - Carole- said while observing the virtual plan.

    Reading the final objective of the plan ----  acquiring Divine Particles from Sky Fiend Group and stepping into the path of extending longevity ---- she couldn't control her excitement, despite the dread she felt in case they failed.

    \"But are you sure it would be the right thing to do?\"

    Carole asked while glancing at a specific part of the plan. There, the image of Hope in Agatha's arms from City Heart Hospital floated.

    \"Right?\" Hank lifted his head and snorted in disdain. \"There is nothing in this world that can be classified as right or wrong.\"

    He waved his hand and the plan disappeared.

    \"Besides, it isn't like we are kidnapping or killing anyone,\" Hank said with a grin. \"We are just going to be extra smart, and Kiba can't blame us for that.\"

    Carole didn't reply.

    She still remembered the day Kiba almost killed her and Hank... just hours after asking her for a date. He was like a menacing demon, dreading nothing, completely different than the persona of the playboy she knew.

    \"There are always risks when the stakes are high!\"
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