Her mother, with Lilim in her arms, was sprinting through the deep forest.
There was no sound of footsteps. She is a master of stealth.
However, the presence of her pursuers was gradually approaching.
Some of the Golden Leopard Tribe have a special sense of smell. They must have joined the pursuers.
“Let’s split up.”
Her mother stopped in front of the river and set Lilim down. It was cold and snowy in the forest at night.
“Mother will follow the river to the southeast. Lilim, go east across the river.”
She left Lilim with her little brother, who was on her back.
“Lilim, I will ask you to take care of your little brother.”
“No…….! I want to be with you, Mother!”
“Don’t be selfish. Be patient. We will meet again in the Kingdom of Midgar.”
Mother hugged Lilim tightly.
“Then why …… are you leaving little brother in my care?”
“I cannot fight. I cannot run as well as mother.”
“Lilim, listen to me.”
“Brother would be better off with you, Mother!”
“Listen to me, Lilim!”
Lilim buried her face in her mother’s chest and shook her head.
“If only I hadn’t become demon-possessed, if only I’d been burned at the stake…… Father, because of …… me……!!!”
“That man has changed since Lilim was born. When I saw that man, who was always wielding a sword, reading a picture book to you, I thought I was going to lose my mind. He always said that Lilim was a genius.”
“Watching you grow has been the greatest joy for us, and we are so glad you are here. Lilim…..you certainly can’t fight. But you are a very smart girl. You have the knowledge to overcome difficulties. So you will be fine.”
“Lilim. Please take care of him.”
Mother held out the little brother. The baby, who knew nothing about the situation, looked at Lilim with a scowling look.
Lilim received the baby with tears streaming down her face.
“Thank you, Lilim. Ever since you were born, we have been so happy.”
“Mother…… Be sure to visit …… in the Kingdom of Midgar.”
“Go, Lilim, now, and go over the river to get rid of the scent.”
Lilim disappeared in the shallow river, turned around several times, and went deep into the forest to the east.
Mother sees her off, and then sprints southeast along the river.
Her loud footsteps echoed through the forest at night.
To the east.
Simply to the east, as if driven.
Lilim ran through the dark forest. The winter night was cold, and her hands and feet felt like ice.
And at dawn, she left the forest.
“This is …….”
She saw for the first time the sandy beach and the endless surface of the water. But she knew.
“It’s …… the ocean.”
She licked the seawater to make sure.
There was no doubt.
“Father,…… there is nothing here.”
She exhaled white breath into the sky. Snow was falling from the sky.
She sat down on the cold beach and fell on her face.
“There is …… nothing in the east. Where is the mission,…… where is the kingdom of Midgar….. Mother?”
Her legs felt like sticks, and she couldn’t take another step.
The black bruise spread to her chest. It throbbed and ached.
In her arms was her little brother. Lilim had to protect the little life entrusted to her.
“Let’s go…… across the sea.”
She knows that there is a country beyond the sea. Whether it is the Kingdom of Midgar, she does not know, but since her father said so, it must be so.
Mother is waiting for her there. Father might be there, too.
If she continues along the coast, she will find a fishing village. One way or another, she would get a ride on a boat.
Lilim started walking again.
—- At that moment.
“Oya oya, there you are.”
That priest stood in front of Lilim. The bloody chain jingled.
‘Don’t …… come closer……!”
She backed away on shaky legs.
“Now, here’s the question. Where is the demon-possession?
The priest held up the head with a crooked smile.
“it’s not this man”
It was the head of her father.
The bloodied head made her imagine a spectacular end.
“Neither was this woman.”
The priest then held up the other head.
It was her mother’s head.
Mother was dead, with her eyes wide open, staring at something.
“Why …… are you doing this?”
“Now there are only two left.”
The priest abandoned the two heads and walked up to them.
“Nooooooooooooooooooooooooo,…… father,…… mother,……”
“There have been very few reported cases of male demonic possession, but that doesn’t mean there are zero.”
“No……don’t……don’t touch my brother.”
Lilim hugs her brother with tears in her eyes.
“Now, which one of you is the demon-possessed one?”
“I …… I am the demon-possessed one, so please, my brother is …….”
“Good kid. You are a good girl, honest and good.”
The priest then stroked Lilim’s head with his blood-soaked hand.
“We may be friends for a long time. Let me introduce myself. I am Petos, high priest. You will be a valuable experiment.”
“W-what about my brother……”
“Don’t worry. I have no use for a child who is not demon-possessed.”
Then Petos caressed his brother’s neck with a chain.
“So I will kill him without making him suffer.”
There was a spray of blood.
Lilim’s brother’s head fell from his arms.
“Kuku, kukukukuku. Come on, let’s celebrate.”
Looking down at the exclaiming Lilim, Petos gave a twitchy laugh.
“AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!! Why, WHY!!”
“Today is a great day. You’re the reason I’m on my way to become a Rounds.”
Lilim picks up the three heads that fell to the ground.
Father, mother, and brother.
“AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH … I’ll kill you … I’ll definitely kill you!!”
Lilim screamed with eyes stained with hatred.
But Petos turned away, ignoring Lilim.
“—-Is it over?”
Then he calls out to the forest. Then a group of people in strange robes appeared there.
“Yes, every last one of them.”
Countless raw heads rolled on the beach. They were all heads of the Golden Leopard Tribe.
“All the heads of the Golden Leopard tribe have been taken care of. There will be no more leaks of information.”
“I see, that’s great.”
That was a statement to Lilim.
“Your father’s avenger is dead.”
Petos laughed and tossed a fresh head to her. It was the head of the first man of the branch family.
Lilim kicked off the beach and jumped on Petos.
However, Lilim is blown away by Petos’ chain.
Her body is weak. Her consciousness fades.
“Take her into custody and send her to the Valiola laboratory. I’m going to put the word out to the factions…”
Lilim’s consciousness was cut off at that point.