The smell of fresh blood and flesh filled the air. If one looked at the ground, they would see body parts, half an arm, half an eye, or a few arteries. On the wall, six people chained to a wooden cross, but anybody walking by would no longer recognize them as human due to the intense torture session they just experienced.
Lillian looked at the six with cold eyes. "Next time you wish to mess with my people, you may want to rethink it."
"But it was sir Eric who—"
Her lips curved to a smile as she walked up to the half-dead man on the end row. He was the only one with his mouth in tac. The others had either lost it or were in too much pain to speak.
"Are you not capable of using your own heads to decide things for yourself? Or is my brother scarier than me?"
"N—no at all but—"
Lillian sighed deeply. "Although father has not announced it, I am sure as his guards he has informed you he is not of Ageha blood. He is only your master in name. If he orders you to do anything regarding me, you are to disobey him."
"But general he—"
Her gaze dimmed as she cupped the man's cheek. "Do you also want to lose your ability to speak? I am more than willing to help you there."
He immediately turned quiet, and she sighed again.
"The only reason your less injured is because I heard you pulled Natalia away when she was about to charge at Eric."
If this man had not done that, then Eric would have a legit excuse to hurt Natalia. He could easily say he was defending himself since she made the first move.
"..Right…he was right."
"About?" Lillian's ears were sharp, so despite the muttering, she clearly heard him.
"The master said you are soft on Miss Natalia."
At that comment, her gaze dimmed more, and she lost whatever patience she had. It took a single blow from the knife in her right hand to cut his tongue off with a single sweep.
She did want to ask him more questions, but after hearing that, she understood something. Eric chose these people because he no longer has any need for them.
He picked them, knowing that they would not mind risking their lives. It seems she has wasted her time with these people. But, it should satisfy her bloodthirst for a while.
Her gaze fell on the other members. He indeed chose very capable and yet individuals with no noble backgrounds or much to lose. It seems he is still one step ahead of her. But that is fine, now is not the time to face them directly.
She walked over to the man in the center, a man with unusual amber-colored hair and emerald green eyes.
While she rendered him unable to use his mouth for a while, his inability to speak is not gone. There is a reason why she kept this one alive. She knew one of her sisters was fond of him. She can use this man as a pawn.
It is dangerous to increase the number of people by her side. But for her goal, she needs to gather more people around her.
She could no longer see the colour of her hands due to the amount of blood.
"M--miss Lilian, sir Lucas has returned."
At the mention of that name she dropped the blade in her hands, and looked over. "He has?"
The moment she entered the room, she saw Lucas treating Gil; she knew that there would be no need to lecture. Lucas was in the middle of his famous speech, a speech filled with insults.
She scanned the room and sighed in relief when she did not see Natalia there. She thought her sister would be nosy and cause a fuss. But knowing that girl, if she is not here, she is most likely sulking and blaming herself somewhere else.
"Lucas, that is enough," Lillian called out.
Lucas turned around and frowned. He waltzes over and then flicked her forehead. "I told you already, stop going near people with bad mana. They are infecting you."
"I was in the torture chambers." Lillian knew Lucas disliked it whenever she went there, but if she openly tortured people, then the situation would worsen.
He sighed but nodded. "Alright, but even then, next time, don't go without me."
Lillian carefully observed his behavior. He seems normal, even though he left frantically and behaved oddly the other day. Maybe it was just her imagination? Since she met him, there have been many rumors regarding them, but Lucas has always remained indifferent to everything.
She thought the same would happen this time too, and she could bring up her fake couple plan with him. But, he reacted differently, and it left her puzzled.
Why is he suddenly so different? Did something happen during his trip? Also, when he said he saw a friend, what kind of friend? Lillian shook her head frantically.
She must be going crazy. She can't ask him those questions, and it would be too personal. She and Lucas have a business-like relationship, and they were neither friends, family, or lovers. But recently, she has shared too much information with him.
Maybe he is not the one who is behaving oddly, but her.
Her thoughts broke off when he leaned forward. "Why are you spacing out? Do you feel unwell?"
It took her a moment to realize how close he was, and for some reason, she looked away.
Lucas must have realized, too, since he backed away. He did not say anything, but she noticed that he also kept his head down.
Gil coughed. "Mistress and sir Lucas, why are you acting weird around each other?" He trailed off. "Is it because of those weird rumors?"
Gil is as sharp as ever. Yes, those rumors, why would it bother them both so much? She did not notice them until she saw Lucas acting differently.
Lucas is the first one to break the odd silence as he walked back over to Gil. "Gilbert, give me your other hand."
"Huh?" Gil said, puzzled. "But my other hand is not hu-"Gil does not get a chance to finish that sentence since Lucas twisted his hand.
"Ouch, ouch!" He yelped in pain. "Sir Lucas!"
"Your making Lillian uncomfortable."
"Why would that rumor bother mistress--?"
Lillian blinked when she heard those words from Lucas. Indeed he is right, but how come he said something? No, this is not the first time. Lucas has always acted this way, but after what happened the other day, she felt a bit strange.
Sometimes when he says stuff like this, she feels like a normal girl. But it takes one quick glance at the blood on the edge of her hands to remind her and she is not a normal person. Just a few minutes ago, she left six people half-dead in the torture chambers.