A beam of light shot out towards the sky, accompanied by the sound of crystals breaking.
The red crystal that hovered above Chiffon’s chest shattered into thousands of pieces, and was replaced by a beautiful pink flower in full bloom. The flower glowed brightly, but its light would flicker from time to time like the beating of a heart.
The old woman’s smile widened as she watched Chiffon slowly descend towards the ground. The little girl’s eyes were open, but it was like a window covered by fog. No light, nor hope, could be seen within their depths.
Only lifelessness, as if her soul had left her body.
The old woman approached Chiffon and caressed the side of the little girl’s face. It felt smooth to the touch, which reminded her of her youth that had withered away after staying in the Tower of Babylon for hundreds of years.
"Such a beautiful flower, but it has not bloomed completely," the old woman said as she looked at the pink flower that hovered above the little girl’s chest. "Your Heart Devil was due to love and marriage?"
The old woman chuckled, "It’s good to be young. I was like you, once. Young and naive. Clinging to dreams and thinking that love would be enough to make me happy for the rest of my life."
The old woman sighed as she continued caressing Chiffon’s cheeks. The pink-haired girl just stared in front of her, looking at nothing. She was like a doll that was waiting for someone to play with her.
"Worry not, My Dear," the old woman commented. "His Excellency is benevolent and kind. He will grant your wish. You want to get married, right? Very well, tomorrow, we will hold the grandest wedding in this tower.
"Tomorrow, your dream will be fulfilled, and at the same time… his Excellency will feast on your heart, body, and soul."
Chiffon didn’t reply, or say anything. In fact, it seemed as if she hadn’t heard a single thing that the lady had said. Her lifeless eyes simply stared straight, devoid of sadness, happiness, and other emotions.
"Take her away, and make the necessary preparations," the old woman ordered. "Clean and purify her body so that she will be worthy to be His Excellency’s bride!"
Two women wearing veils appeared behind the old woman. Both of them held Chiffon’s hands and led her away. The old woman watched them go with a smile on her face.
She then snapped her finger and several red vines protruded off the ground. They rose to the sky and entangled William’s arm, and legs. The vines didn’t stop there and wrapped itself around the Half-Elf’s body until he was covered up like a cocoon.
"I don’t know why your Heart Devil hasn’t advanced, but it’s not a big deal," the old woman said. "I can always use force to hasten the process."
Soon, the vines glowed bloody red. The crystal that hovered above William’s chest started to glow as well. What the old woman was doing was trying to forcefully mature the Heart Devil in William’s heart.
That way, she would have full control over him, the moment his heart fell into corruption.
"No! Chiffon!" William roared in anger.
He had seen his fake self, the fake Ashe, and the fake Princess gang up on the little girl and say harsh words to her.
The Half-Elf was so angry that he had trashed his fake self over and over, but no matter how hard he tried, he could only pass through them without dealing any kind of damage.
William watched as Chiffon’s eyes became dull before collapsing on the ground. After that, the world shattered, and he found himself falling from the sky.
The Half-Elf couldn’t forget the look on the pink-haired girl’s face before she and her world disappeared.
William’s heart was aching. He wanted to fight the mastermind behind Chiffon’s suffering. But, for that to happen, he needed to break out of the world he was in first. The Half-Elf had already known that he was in some kind of Dreamworld.
He had walked the land of Dreams so many times in the past, so he was quite familiar with its sensation. The only problem was, he couldn’t break out of the dream he was in. A powerful law prevents him from doing so.
After a discussion with Optimus, both of them agreed that In order to break this law, William needed to clear his own Dream World first.
As William descended from the sky, the powerful sound of a horn spread across his surroundings.
William narrowed his eyes and saw a man standing on top of a rainbow bridge. He held a giant horn in his hand and was blowing on it with all of his might.
Upon hearing this unfamiliar yet familiar sound. A flood of memories rushed towards William’s head, causing it to ache.
Gritting his teeth, William activated his flight skill, while fighting off the headache that was tearing his head apart. With a thud, he crashed towards the ground and rolled for several meters before coming to a stop.
"Gjallarhorn…," William muttered as he propped himself from the ground. He then looked at the warrior that was continuing to blow his horn from on top of the rainbow bridge.
For some reason, William had recognized the warrior’s features and knew for certain that his assumption wasn’t wrong.
A few moments later, the ground trembled, and the Half-Elf had to plant his feet firmly on the ground to prevent himself from collapsing.
William looked to the South and saw an unfamiliar, yet familiar scene. Countless numbers of Giants, Monstrous Beasts, spectres, and everything that spelled the end of the world was marching towards the plains of Valhalla.
Among them, a Giant stood out from the rest. He was holding a flaming red sword that burned so brightly that Soleil’s full powered attack would look like a small flame that came from a matchstick.
"Ragnarok." William grimaced because he understood what was about to happen. The memories that had rushed to him earlier had given him a glimpse of the outcome of this fateful battle that would end all life in the world of Yggdrasil.
For some reason, William felt the need to look at the Bifrost Bridge.
There he saw a small giant, with long pink hair standing behind Heimdall. She was looking at the approaching Giant army with a fearful gaze.
She was the traitor of the Giant Race.
The Giantess that had sided with the Aesir due to her feelings for the silver-haired Einherjar who had brought her back with him to the land of Asgard.
"Chiffon." William felt like there was a lump on his throat when he saw the Giantess.
The Half-Elf knew that although her body was shaking right now due to fear and anxiety, Chiffon would be at the frontlines of the war, fighting against her own race.
William knew that she was not fighting for herself.
He knew that the small giantess was fighting for love.
She was fighting for his love.
"No!" William shouted as he ran towards Chiffon. "Leave! Go to Ithavllir! You will be safe there!"
William’s tears fell unabated as he held unto the Giantess calf. This time, he was able to touch Chiffon, but the latter didn’t seem to be aware that there was a human hugging her calf beside her.
The Half-Elf cried.
He already knew the outcome of this battle, and the fate that awaited the pink-haired giant. He didn’t want to see it again.
William knew that if he were to relieve that scene again, his heart would burst to pieces. Everyone thought that Ragnarok and the destruction of Asgard was just a myth.
However, for those who had fought in that great battle that decided the fate of the Nine Realms, it was a heart-wrenching experience. It was a day that no living being would be able to forget.
It was the greatest battle that was written in recorded history. It was a Myth, a Fairytale, a Saga, an Epic that people on Earth had read about or watched someone’s interpretation of the events at some point in time.
Many thought that it was a good form of entertainment. But, what they didn’t know was that everything that was written down on those fragmented tablets that had survived up to the modern day were all real.
It wasn’t a Myth. It was a reality that had been lost through time like the legendary city of Atlantis.
As William cried his heart out, Heimdall stopped blowing Gjallarhorn.
The Guardian of the Bifrost Bridge had already played his role. The twilight of the Gods was at hand, and the battle of Ragnarok was about to begin.
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