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472 Overdose of Love

    Anima, three days later.

    After the fight against the ki warriors, the bishops had gone back to the white castle with good news, and in high spirits. It did not matter that most of them were injured, that they had not inflicted any substantial damage to the Domain of the War God, or the fact that they were the ones forced to a hasty retreat.. All that mattered, was that they had completed their assignment, and that for that, they would be rewarded.

    However, amongst the returning bishops, there was one who did not appear to share the same enthusiasm, and that person, was the first bishop, who had spent the last day staring at the bound Alesia with doubt.

    "We should start with the bad news, and report our success right after. In the state he is now, he'll forget about the former the moment he hears the latter." Said one of the bishops with a matter-of-fact tone.

    As bishops they were the upper echelon of the spiritual faction, and their role was only second to that of the spiritual emperor himself, so when the champions of another dimension came to visit, and left a new path of cultivation that had helped them rise in strength, they were amongst the few who knew.

    "I say we don't tell him about the fight altogether. We were sent to take this little broad. No point in risking it." retorted a third bishop while pointing his fingers at Alesia, who was chained, and locked inside a sphere of spatial essence.

    The first bishop looked at his companions with doubt, and for a few moments, on his face appeared what one would recognize as disdain. "Bera," he called with a serious tone, causing the fourth bishop to turn to look at him right before he ordered, "Take the girl and lock them away from the white castle. I need to have a few words with the emperor before he meets her."

    There was no real difference between the rankings of the various bishops, but even though they were all at the same level, the first bishop was currently the strongest entity after the emperor, as well as the one who the spiritual emperor had tasked to make sure that he would not do anything stupid while his spirit was affected by his cultivation. To the other bishops he was the person in charge, and his word, at least until the emperor could go back to being his former self, had the same weight of the emperor's.

    The first bishop could see that there was confusion in the eyes of his peers, but instead of bothering himself with explaining, he opened a portal that led directly outside of his office, where he knew the spiritual emperor would spend most of his free time.

    Sure enough, when he opened the door, there he saw him. Sitting at his desk, reading a novel, and overreacting to every minuscule detail he would gather from it.

    "My emperor, I am back." Said the first bishop with as flat of a tone as he could muster.

    "Yuto!" Exclaimed the young-looking emperor with enthusiasm. "Were you successful? Is she here?" he then asked with a deep interest.

    The first bishop frowned. He knew that this interest was only fueled by an accentuated curiosity, and that the emperor of before would have only shown interest for the odd nature described by the old immortal cultivator.. But now, his spirit was feeling the devastating weight that a deeper connection to the spiritual plain would have on him.

    "Yes, my emperor. She is unconscious, I will bring her here as soon as she wakes up. It will only take a few days.." He said in hope to keep Alesia far away from the emperor for as long as possible.

    Dealing with the spiritual emperor during the last half a year had been extremely taxing to the first bishop. Due to his role and power, the spiritual emperor was the undisputed sovereign of his faction, and yet, now, he had to be treated like a whimsical kid. To find a way to deter him from doing anything stupid without him lashing out in a disastrous manner, was his task.

    Unfortunately, every now and then, something that would trigger the spiritual emperor would happen. A simple feeling of curiosity, irritation, or even worry, would immediately spiral out of control, and turn into obsession, rage, and terror.. Unable to stop him when this would happen, the first bishop could only let things run their course, and hope for the better.

    Whenever something happened, he would hope that that would not be the case, but unfortunately, at least this time, he was unlucky. The spiritual emperor had thought about the kind of being the old immortal cultivator had described, and in her being, he had shown a genuine interest. However, that interest rapidly increased in intensity, until finally, he became obsessed with wanting to unsolve this mystery. To learn whether a method to abandon his body and live as a pure spiritual entity, truly existed.

    "Wake her up, I want to see her now." He ordered with a calm tone.

    The lips of the first bishop tightened for a moment, and his head shook from side to side. "My Emperor, the young woman is tired, wouldn't you want to at least wait for her to-"

    "I SAID NOW, YUTO! NOW!!" Roared the spiritual emperor with anger, forcing a feeling of anguish down the spine of the first bishop, and causing him to fall on the ground and gasp for air.

    "Y-Yes.. Emperor.." he responded before opening a portal, and crawling into it. Once through, he closed the portal and sat against the wall before cleaning his forehead from the sweat, and breathing in and out in order to catch his breath.

    After a few minutes, he stood back up, opened a second portal, and entered it.

    On the other side of this portal was a small room, inside which Alesia had just been chained to a metallic table merged with the floor. By the back of the room was a bed, on which she was sitting with a fearful expression. The first bishop walked into the room, and without even acknowledging her, sat at the table. He then turned to look at her, who was alerted by his presence, and said, "In two minutes, I will take you to meet a person. At no point in time will you be allowed to look at him, or plead for your freedom. Respond to his questions, and I will release you.. Say anything unnecessary, and I will kill you on the spot."

    As he finished speaking, the bishop took the chains off of Alesia's wrists, and dragged her into a portal he had just created. A portal that led them to the corridor right outside of his office.

    *Knock Knock*

    "Come in." Said a calm voice that came from the other side of the door.

    Alesia was extremely nervous. She did not know what these people wanted, and for all she knew, she could have simply been the unlucky one, picked amongst the various disciples as leverage for the Dominion of the War God.

    She looked at the old man that had taken her with confusion, but just as she was about to say something, the bishop turned to look at her, and said, "You are an immortal cultivator. Nothing else. Am I clear?"

    Alesia could only nod before the bishop grabbed her arm, and dragged her into the door.

    The moment she entered the room, she felt an indescribable feeling down upon her. A form of pressure that did not threaten her physically or mentally, but that heightened her feelings, including the fear that had never left since they had taken her from Arena. This pressure was coming from the young man that was sitting at the desk, and quietly reading through the pages of an ancient dusty tome.

    "My emperor, this is the woman. I am afraid the words of the old immortal were simple unfounded rumors.. She is just an immortal cultivator." Said the bishop with an apologetic tone.

    "I will verify that myself." Said the spiritual emperor without taking his eyes off the book. It was only after he reached the end of the page, that he finally closed the book, placed it over the desk, and turned to look at Alesia.

    The moment the eyes of the two met, the spiritual emperor was stricken. He quickly tried to fix his white hair before standing up, and straightening his white robes. He then walked towards the frightened young woman with a dignified expression, and said, "I am surprised that the rumors that reached me had nothing to do with your beauty."

    The first bishop sucked air through his teeth before shouting curses in his head.

    "I don't know what you are talking about.. I am just an immortal cultivator.. Why did you order for me to get kidnapped?" Asked Alesia before taking a small step backwards. She was feeling intimidated by the odd behaviour of the young man, which in her eyes, seemed to be that of someone who was genuinely in love.

    Suddenly, the first bishop saw a chance, "HOW DARE YOU SPEAK TO THE EMPEROR LIKE THAT! DIE FOR ME!" he shouted with indignation before taking over the space around her. His intention was to twist the space into blending her out of existence before her presence could affect his vulnerable emperor any further, but it was too late.. Before he could hurt her, The first bishop felt the mark of his essence disappear from the room, followed by the apparition of a faint mist that left the body of the spiritual emperor, and seeped into his skin. What followed was the most horrifying minutes that the bishop would ever go through in his life, which he spent trapped into a nightmare that had invaded his mind.

    The sheer sight of the representation of the emperor's emotions was enough to shock Alesia, who stumbled backwards while trying to make her way to the door.

    "Do not worry, I will not hurt you." Said the spiritual emperor before walking up to her, and grabbing her hand. He then closed his eyes for a few moments, and when he reopened them a few moments later, he had a big smile on his face.. A warm smile filled with affection, and a hint of pride. "Can you show me your spirit? Only your spirit." he asked with a calm tone. The same a lover would reserve for their partner.

    Alesia tried to pull her hand away, but when she found herself unable to, she muttered, "I-I don't know what.. I am just an im-"

    "There is no need to lie to me. Your connection to the spiritual plain is absolute, and that should not be possible due to your physical body. Show me.." Said the spiritual emperor, this time, however, there was a lot less warmness in his voice, and was replaced by a visible hint of irritation.

    For the frightened Alesia there was no chance to hide her secret from this young man. He could see things of her spirit that not even she could understand, and from the way he had been acting, it was clear that any small lie would be akin to gambling with her life.

    Left with no choice, she transformed her entire immortal cultivation into a spiritual one, turning into an intangible fairy with snow white hair that fluctuated in the air like snow, and porcelain skin.

    Before the spiritual emperor could even notice Alesia's ethereal beauty, he felt a change in the spiritual root that was hidden deep into his castle, which reacted to Alesia's presence by trying to reach her, almost as if trying to join back with something that had been lost.

    "Spectacular.." he said as the smile on his face widened, and his heartbeat accelerated. He then added, "Finally someone worthy of me.."
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