“Wow. somehow this room feels even colder from the outside hallway. How do the people of the republic live in such a cold environment? They dont even use magic to keep themselves warm.”

Rita was not wrong in saying that the head maids room was colder than the outside corridor. But somehow, it matched the esthetic of the interiors.

It was difficult for Aurora to explain, but the marble cladding walls as well as the abundance of blue and white in the walls made the room seem colder than it was.

“Rita, dont joke around. We need to find the map of this place and then get out. We dont know how long Natasha will be able to stall the head maid for.”

If possible, Aurora did not want to face the guards of the Northern Palace and complicate her relationship with the others.

“I know. But Im doing this to curb my worries. I mean, what if the head maid knew about Natasha running away? I know its not been long but there is that possibility.”

Of course, that was a possibility. It had crossed Auroras mind that they might be getting played with but somehow she was not worried.

“I trust Alexander to keep up his end of the mission. We should focus on our side for now.”

“Alright. If that is what you want then Ill not bring this topic up again.”

Aurora was not avoiding this topic. She just knew that there was nothing more to talk about. Finishing this topic was for the best.

Aurora got started on sorting the documents. The room was well organized but it was a mesh of digital and hand-written documents.

Many of the pages Aurora found deeper in the chest were old and fragile. They looked like they would collapse at a single touch.

“Sheesh. Who keeps these important documents like this? And why did someone leave chests open with a lack of security? Its as if they do not care whether someone walks in or not.”

Aurora had noticed that as well. All the chests in the head maids room were unlocked and could be easily accessed.

It was almost like the head maid did not care if someone found her secrets of her or not.

What gave her this much confidence? It worried Aurora to see this.

“Here. is this the map? Look, it has Natashas family crest. I wonder what kind of bird this is.”

Rita held the piece of paper in front of her. It was an old and fragile thing that was falling apart.

The back of the paper held a faint imprint of a majestic bird about to take flight. Its unique three tails magnificently circled the huge body. It was truly one of a kind bird.

“Its a phoenix. The northern familys house symbol has always been a phoenix. It is said that their symbol was adopted just as the abyss descended onto this world. They were one of the oldest aristocratic families that still hold the secrets of theold world with them.”

“Old world? Isnt that just a myth? No one has been able to prove its existence for a long time now. Does it exist?”

“I dont know.”

The Old World was folklore nowadays. It was a name given to the world before the abyss. It was believed to be a prosperous land without magic and technology.

But so much time had passed that everything that belonged to those old times had been eradicated. To prove its existence now was impossible.

“Anyway, what should we do with this map? Im too afraid to even touch it because I feel like it will crumble.”

Rita held the map tenderly away from her. Aurora could tell why she was worried about the old paper

Time had taken its toll on the poor paper.

“Ill get it scanned by the system and prepare a 3-D copy. We can compare with the existing data we have and then decide what our next move should be.”

Aurora quickly got to work. Her system was back online so it did not take long for her to make the necessary preparations.

“Its time to get out of here. Lets go and get our other two party members.”


Aurora opened the door but the corridor was not empty. Blank-faced maids filled the hallway and blocked the pair.

“You are under arrest for breaking the Northern Palace. Fighting back will be taken as a sign of struggle and you will be charged for that.”

The maid in front of the group seemed fearless. She was standing tall and her blank eyes looked Aurora right in the face.

Somehow, that cold tone and uncaring attitude reminded Aurora of Natasha. It was similar in feel but the intention was completely different.

“Right. Rita, change of plans. Well be breaking into Royal Palace for real now.”

“I was waiting for you to say that. Lets show these people who is the boss.”

Even before Aurora had finished speaking, Rita had a fireball ready in her hand. But this is not any fireball.

It was the smoke-screen one that would allow the pair to quickly flee the scene.

But despite the smoke, the maids did not look worried at all. Her cold eyes snapped toward Aurora and she had a feeling that something was going to happen.

Aurora managed to get her spear out in time to block the ax being aimed at her. The delicate-looking maid swung the heavy object toward Aurora again.

“Fuck this. Im not holding back. My familiar made of shadow, heed my call.”

A giant wolf cut the space between Aurora and the maid. It stopped the maid and her companions short every time they tried to take a step toward Aurora.

“Hurry up and run. That shadow puppet will only be able to take so much. We need to find Alexander and Natasha before everyone becomes alert about our presence.”

Rita held Auroras hand and pulled her away from the commotion. The shadow wolf covered their tracks.

It felt wrong to run away from a fight like this but this was the best approach for their group.

As much as Aurora hated to admit it, Natasha was in a hostage situation so rescuing her would be their priority.

“Darn it. They are coming from another route. Aurora, we should split up here. Alexander will get Natasha out somehow.”

“Alright. Ill send him a message about what he has to do. I will trust him.”

“Lets separate on the next node. Ill meet up in the weapons room.”

Aurora did not disagree and when the next corridor came, Aurora took the right turn.

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