LORD SHADOW CHAPTER 165: TIMELINES

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POLAND 

KRAKOW 

A sigh could be heard, deep and full of emotions as a person look up out of his window. Butterflies around a flower, flapping its wings. 

On the horizons, people are opening their shops and customers began entering the market buying common necessities. 

As the morning came, the flowers began to blossom. Winter is ending.  

Spring light could be seen through the trees. 

The snow slowly melts as winter is over. In this village on the Southern Ward of Krakow, of the capital of Poland, there is a small village. 

When the World Government crown the King of Poland, King Artur designate four wards in Krakow and separate it with translucent barrier of magic.  

If one wanted to travel to other ward one has to present the Seal of Permission that could be taken when one goes to the Wardens that guard the Gate of Four Wards.  

Each Ward has a Gate that is the source of power for the barrier. 

While experts could easily disregard such arrangement the same could not be said for the people of Poland.  

Not only were they struck between the power play between two powerful organizations they were also screwed over by their own government 

But in Poland, lies this village unaffected with the chaos of the world. 

In the scheme of things this village is nothing of importance.  

It is peaceful and suffer no war since its founding. Though that is not something worth bragging about considering this village was recently founded. 

It is not long since the Weronian War ended when Frederick friend founded this village. It has not even been more than three years. 

After his friend died mauled by a monster, Frederick was elected Chief.  

Since this village is in the middle of nowhere and has no strategic importance, life has been peaceful for this village. 

Many churches spires could be seen looms overhead above a patchwork of baroque frontispieces and Romanesque buildings.  

Faith…..help some people processed what is happening. 

After the war, human population dipped. While human population dipped in quantity, it makes up with quality. 

Those who survive the war are either lucky or strong enough.  

The reason why this small village resembles old Krakow, is because of the fact that people still missed the old days.  

Even though many of new things were discovered every day and new technology were invented out of the new things that they scoured in dungeons or caves of monsters, people still miss the old world. 

Some people after the war built a few buildings resembling the old days and it snowballed from there. 

Now this village looks like Center Krakow before the Fall.  

Krakow, the center Krakow on the other hand look a lot like an impenetrable fortress of doom. 

With Cloud Ships floating on top of the skies of Krakow Center and dome of protection surrounding it, inscribed with warding, restrictions and formation, it appears like it was a great prison. 

The Wawel Royal Castle, was built below the Krakow Mountain borrowing the power of the Mountain to supply energy to the warding and dome and could be seen from this village. 

The old Wawel Castle was destroyed long ago during the Fall. The man sighed again. 

The spring has come and the winter snow has stopped. The world is once again descending into chaos. 

This is what he felt as he look outside his window, his eyes look upon the children of his village and knowing this peace is short lived.  

He sighed as he look at the opened letter on the desk near the windows.  

He sighed again.  

This morning was like any other mornings. He got up at eight. No omens at all of the news that will come today.  

He got up from his bed as his helper informed him that there is nothing to preside today. 

As Chief he is to preside of the squabbles and feuds of the people in the village. The village is small and such cases rarely happens because everyone knows each other. 

Mostly the feud will happens because of the difference in culture. While this village is small and the population did not exceed three hundred people, it is diverse.  

There is Japanese, Chinese, Indians, Africans, Australians, Germans, Russians and few others races that Frederick didn’t even know.  

He has always failed in geography in class. 

But the World Government embraces all. Of course the majority was still Polish but in these couple of years after the Fall people has becomes more tolerant of other races. 

Probably because there is bigger things to worry about.  

There is monsters that roams the lands, an intergalactic threat and many other things that appears on Earth after the fall that seems to be designed to kill humans and end humanity. 

With humanity as a whole at stake, no one really cares about someone else races.   

Though Frederick find it quite tragic that it takes the possibility of humanity to be wiped out that unites people. 

As the wind blows over his hair he look again at the letter and he remembers what changed his ordinary morning into his biggest headache this year. 

After he takes a bath he went to his gardens to check on his plants.  

He usually does that when he has spare time.  

As he has no business today he thought it would be easy day today. Other than treating the Prince and the Snow Princess cautiously and not doing anything to irk them, Frederick life was peaceful. 

He check his plant for a few hours before returning back to his mansion.  

He went to his room and it was then he got the letter. The letter was sent by the Thunderbird Eagle, the fastest delivery eagle that could be tamed. 

And the sender?  

The Duke. 

He already felt something is wrong.  

And bad premonition is never wrong.  

When he reads the letter, he couldn’t help but putting down back the opened letter weakly on the table as he stood and look outside his room window. 

Looking below at his people, he felt sorry. And he don’t know what to do. He did not want to be the one that destroy their peace.  

But he didn’t know what the best course to take is. 

The letter was about the ongoing cold war between the Republic and the World Government. 

‘Hah’ he sighed. 

‘Why is my luck is this bad?’ 

Frederick got the news his village will be one of the places where the delegations of the Republic will pass. 

When he got the report from the Duke of Krakow he was torn. The Duke was under the direct rule of the King. And the King is crowned by the World Government. 

So, of course when the Duke got a hold of the information that the Republic has sent a delegation to Krakow, he wanted to annihilate this expedition. 

After all, everyone knows unrest in forming in Poland right now. After the death of Rafał many rebels formed their own secret society.  

And the Republic which holds many influence in Europe of course wanted to liberate Poland from world Government influence.  

So, the King of Poland has always take extra caution regarding the Republic. 

Truth be told, whether it be the Republic or the World Government, they all wanted Poland for their own selfish desires.  

While Frederick understand this, he did not hate the World Government or the Republic. He only hate his own powerlessness.  

He is not even one of the decision maker of this kingdom so he could do nothing.  

If he was as strong as the heroes of the Weronian War then maybe his word will have meanings. Only the strong are respected in this new world.  

He understand this quickly. 

But Frederick unlike his many other friends, prefer peace. Unlike his friend he did not seek strength actively.  

He only get enough strength to protect the people he regarded his family. He is a responsible man, not befitting of his young age.  

In the old world, he would surely have been able to play at night, drink with his friends and vent out. But in this new world, that kind of person would die early…unless if that person is strong. 

He then call for his maid to bring him some tea. The maid come inside and put the tea on his study table.  

She saw that the young chief is looking outside the window. She smiles bitterly, looking at that broad shoulder that seems heavy.  

She did not say anything, she only put down the tea, and exited out. 

‘Thank you Zuzanna’ his voice carried off outside the room. And the maid just smiles a bit before walking off to the stairway. 

Sighing, Frederick slammed his body on his chair. 

Sitting on his wooden chair his hand resting on top of his carved wooden table inside his large mansion, his feet could not help but keep tapping on the floor. 

He is nervous. And he is torn.  

Why?  

Because just right next to his mansion, is the sister of the Chancellor of the Republic, the Snow Princess Katarina and the hero of the era, and probably still the most strongest man in the world, The Prince. 

He fears that if he really obstruct the expedition from accomplishing their mission, the Prince would chop of his head with his bare hands. 

Frederick could only curse the Republic for making a move right now and so stupid at erasing their tracks.  

Frederick also got news from the Headquarters that saw some disturbing events is happening in the Island of Peace, the seat of power of the World Government. 

The Grand Commander Raymond has not been seen in the Quorum Meeting for almost a week now. 

The President said he is out somewhere investigating something but Frederick think it is something else.  

But since he is not one of any important person in the World Government, he does not know anymore than this. 

‘Hmm’ He took the letter again and reads it again just to make sure. He then put down the letter as he leans his back on his chair, thinking calmly.  

He does not know the power level of the Prince but he knew that he is extremely powerful.  

The fact that he could supply his Life Energy to Katarina every day without over exerting himself shows that this prince is really is like the rumors say about him. 

That he is truly hard to kill.  

Frederick did not know who would win if the World Government clashed with the Prince. 

Of course the World Government also has many experts in Disk Formation and from what Frederick knows the Prince did not yet form his Disk.  

But Frederick has been living closely with that prince for almost a week and a half now. He notices something about the Prince.  

While The Prince did not appear, like he was a Disk Formation expert Frederick could sometimes sense a Disk Formation energy that makes him tremble and almost weak instantly. 

But he was confused because he only felt it for a moment. And he only felt it after the Prince finishes his treatment for Katarina every day. 

It is because of this he is in dilemma. Finally the time for a choice has come. He anticipate this day since the moment he decided to shelter the Prince and the Princess. 

Should he bet on the World Government or should he bet on the Prince? Alea Iacta Est. The Die is cast. 

Now, he has to choose. 

He got up from his seat and once again he look downwards from his high tower floor.  

He saw kids running along the cobblestone roads, saw an old man being help by a young man, see the shopkeeper greeting their customers and saw some fisherman shouting at someone. 

It was life. The bustle of life and people. There is peace.  

‘I would do anything to protect this peace’ he promised to himself as he made a decision in his heart. 

He then called his guard and instruct her to call the Hooded Man in the other mansion. And then he waited. 

He no longer look outside, or pondered why certain things have to change, or why peace is short-lived. 

He sits down at his chair and closes his eyes, trying to take a little nap 

BAM!! 

A guard burst out into the room shocking Frederick. He was instantly awaken from his almost nap, standing in shock and anger. 

‘What gall!’ Frederick fumed as he almost startled himself and fall from his chair because of the shock 

He was about to reprimand the guard when he saw the Guard face.  

The guard face was pale white and judging from the way the guard behaving it seems he seems to have seem something really terrifying. 

What happens? Frederick quickly asked 

‘My..l..ord…The….the…black hooded man is fighting with the Duke of Krakow men. The Blue Beard Inn has been destroyed.’ The guard stuttering and sweat drooping from his forehead 

Hearing this all colors faded away from Frederick face as he rushed out from his room as fast as he can to go to the scene 

He only pray that the situation is not yet come to the point of no return. 

‘Please, please, please’ He muttered as he rides his horse to go to the Inn. From afar one could see smoke in the direction of the Blue Beard Inn. 

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SOMEWHERE AROUND SOUTHERN POLAND 

A raven was perched on a tall tree, its eyelid closes and opens as it look down at a lake. 

The lake was as flat as a mirror and lay without a ripple in the shining blue water that was illuminated by the moonlight. 

A woman could be seen coming to the lake. 

That woman undressed her white robe, revealing her naked milky white skin and her perfect proportioned figure that could make any woman feel envious 

She enter the lake as she smiles 

‘Ah, it almost felt like it was a thousand years ago I could enjoy such bath’ 

She dive down, her body exploring the depths of the lake as she dives deeper down. She saw a snake monster with the length of seven feet below the Lake, waiting for her 

‘A serpent’ she said to herself. 

But she was not panicked.  

She mutter some spells with her mouth and pointed her index finger to that serpent. The serpent turns into a harmless tortoise as it scurried away.  

And she smirked. 

Then she dive back up. 

Her blond hair was wet with water, as she emerged from the water. It was late at night as the owl hoots and beast roams the area. 

She slowly swims feeling refreshed and feeling the fatigue in her body disappeared. She then lean on the banks of the lake.  

The lake side air was filled with the fragrance of the flowers. It was the smells of jasmine. She likes jasmine.  

It reminded her of her mother. Before the Iron King and David destroy her idyllic life.  

Germany was thrown into chaos and she tries to survive the best way she could. Darkness filled her life…..until she found Arno. 

Only in this new timeline she met him earlier, and she was happy. 

She smiles to herself. It was then she sense someone coming 

And her smiles turns into a scowl. 

‘Morgana!’ she said with derision. A woman appears from behind of a tree, wearing that red robe that look devious in the darkness of the night. 

‘Giselle.’ She said with that nauseating smile. 

‘Don’t speak to me like we are friends’ 

Morgana smiles bitterly 

‘Judging by your tone and the way you look at me….you have remember everything?’ 

Giselle did not want to become overly familiar with Morgana so she just nodded.  

This Giselle and the Giselle before the unsealing is totally different. This Giselle is stronger. Her cultivation did not improve but it was her will and her mind that has improved.  

It was like she was a mighty heavenly warrior. 

It is because this Giselle, is not the same Giselle that Morgana persuaded to join her almost three years ago.  

This Giselle is the Giselle that fought in the Final Battle. Those who fought in that last Battle are all great heroes and heroine, their bravery and steel will could not be doubted. 

‘And your decision?’ Morgana asked 

‘I will proceed with your plan. But…..can you fulfill your promise? You have lost your opportunity when the God of Death successfully rides out his Purification of Fire. I don’t know the requirement for Perfection of Disk Formation but I doubt this time would be the same as his Purification. This time he will be prepared.’ 

Morgana face brightened even as Giselle pointed out the difficulty of her objectives. She only fears that Giselle would reject her plan. 

‘Time Crisis’ Morgana answered.  

She knows talking to much would not always seems convincing. This Giselle is smart. She would understand what Morgana means. 

And Giselle who was still leisurely relaxing in the lake had a flash of enlightenment, as he shines with brilliance.  

She understand what Morgana wanted to do. 

‘This would not kill him’ Giselle said lazily.  

To kill a person who has attained Perfection in Seed Forming, that is a fool’s errand.  

Unless Morgana could persuade a being that is as powerful as an Essence Creation level experts, it is truly hard to kill the current Prince. 

Morgana also nodded but she said 

‘Since it is almost impossible to kill him now with my cultivation and your current level of magic not to mention that Loki is guarding him in secret, the only way left for us is to seal him.’  

Morgana knows the reason the last time the only reason she managed to succeed in her sneak attack is because Loki let it happen.  

‘Loki…..was sure Father would ride it out…and because he has his own plans that requires the God of Death be delayed.’ she thought to herself 

Giselle closes her eyes and then she opens it back 

‘This could be done…..if only things progresses like last time. But you realizes it didn’t you, Morgana? This is not like our timeline. Things are changing.’ And with it there is a little smirk on the edges of her mouth 

Like she found something amusing about it. 

Morgana nodded and this is why she wanted to talk with Giselle. She wanted to know the answer to some questions.  

Question that Loki did not want her to know. 

‘This is why I wanted to meet you tonight.’  Morgana said 

‘What do you mean?’ 

‘How can you have the memories of the old timeline? You were unlike me and Loki who sent ourselves back to the past. How did you remember?’ 

This time Giselle shows a sad expression before looking at Morgana like she pities her. 

‘I am but a ghost’ she replied.  

Morgana did not ask as she let Gisele tell her story. Giselle look at Morgana and there is loathing and disgust in her eyes looking at Morgana 

‘Morgana, do you know why I do not like you? You….are a coward.’  

Hearing this Morgana face turned red.  

One does not know whether it is out of embarrassment or anger because Morgana knows exactly what Giselle is referring to. 

‘I heard all about what people said about your husband. That he is a runt of the litter. That he is inferior amongst all the other Sovereigns. He is a trickster and he plays pranks. But, at least he was not a coward. When it is time for him to step up, he step up and he delivers. He is not like you…hiding.’  

And Giselle said it with a condescending tone, looking fearlessly at Morgana. She deserves to say this.  

‘You!’ Morgana pointed her finger at Giselle who was still resting her body at the bank of the lake. Her fingers were trembling in anger as she pointed at Giselle. 

‘Do you think I don’t deserve to say this?’ Giselle smirk, looking at Morgan with mocking expression. 

‘Based on what? In the future you were a Half Sovereign expert but were you present during the Final Battle? I was weaker than you but I was still there fighting to my last breath. Many heroes and heroine weaker than you fight that day, and died that day. I have no respect for cowards.’  

Morgana was about to let anger clouded her judgment but she restrain herself 

‘Enough, Giselle. This is not yet the future. The Final Battle doesn’t necessarily have to happen.’ 

‘HMPH!’ Giselle harrumphed before she also take a deep breath. There was silence for a while as the only sound that could be heard was the wind and the owls.  

Giselle was leisurely playing with water as she look at her bouncing breast and her skin that have no scars. 

She felt quiet nostalgic seeing her own body without any scars. 

‘Fine. Let us cooperate’ she finally said. 

She is a practical woman. Regardless of Giselle feeling for her, she needs to fulfill her objectives. Morgana nodded as she ask her question.  

‘What do you mean by you are a ghost?’ Giselle took a deep breath and then she tells the story of the final battle. 

‘Hirate, Loki and Time God had a plan in the eve of that final battle. The Time God had the Receptacle of Souls. He got that from the God of Death long before the Final battle’ 

Morgana was shocked. She knows what the Receptacles of Souls is used for. 

‘You mean he takes your soul?’ 

Giselle tilted her head and then reply 

‘Not exactly. From what I understand it, he only take the essence of our soul. Whatever that means’ 

‘Our?’ And then a horrifying thoughts flashed inside Morgana mind. 

‘How many essence of souls he takes?’ 

‘All of us, including Sofia, and all the other Sovereigns. It was merely a trace of our souls and did not weaken us by the slightest. ‘ 

‘What is the purpose? And why Hirate is there?’ Giselle smirks 

‘That is the master plan. Hirate uses that traces to replicate our memories just moments before our deaths. So, basically in that future I am already dead.’ 

Morgana face turns pale at this revelation. It took her a few moments before she could calm herself. 

Because she now knows how Giselle had the memories of the future. Loki gives it to her. Which means Loki has many other traces of souls in his possession. 

And Loki would surely will not give that memory to everybody that was present in the Final Battle.  

After all, that would put more variables in changing the future. Chaos…..is not the answer to fix a chaotic future.  

More chaos doesn’t necessarily means that it is good. True, with more chaos, future timeline might change.  

But it doesn’t necessarily means that it would change to be better. Morgana and Loki understand this better than anyone.  

Chaos…..is unpredictable and rarely it brings good.  

Then what does Loki does with the other souls? Morgana could probably guess. It is no wonder, Loki have so much information about this era key players and their circumstances.  

Morgana knew that while Loki did become famous later in his life, he were sheltered in Norway and under the order of many men before he became independent. 

How could he knows about other people and knew where to find them. Some people in her father camp right now, is dead in Loki timeline.  

But it could be explained if Loki had the traces of Sofia and the God of Death companion traces of souls and memories. 

Combined that with Loki power of calculations, he could truly have a grand plan that leads to the ideal solution. 

Hearing this Morgana has another question 

‘Then the future? Does it exist?’  

This question was born out of her experience. After she travels here….she could no longer sense the future.  

This is hard to explain in word, it is just a feeling. Like she is writing in a blank paper about a story that have no predetermined ending.  

But this is weird.  

Because there is a predetermined ending and that was her father destroy all existence. But she could no longer sense that. 

‘Hmm… this is little hard to explain. One could say it exist and at the same time do not exist’ Giselle said with a vague expression on her face. 

‘What is that supposed to mean?’ Morgana ask sounding slightly annoyed with such a vague answer 

Giselle shake her head and then she tries to explains what she understand 

‘You were not present at the final battle so you didn’t know what Jean, Loki, Hirate and Sofia plan.’ Then with a smile that does not seem like a smile Giselle recounted back what she remembers 

‘They do not send Loki to the past, at least not in the conventional way’  

Morgana did not doubt it because the aura of time surrounding Loki is quite different than the aura of time surrounding her. 

‘Why not?’ And Giselle immediately answered 

‘Because if they send Loki in the conventional way, there is too many possibilities of realities branching and timeline divergence which could create a time loop that they could not escape with each loop ending with the universe destroyed’ 

Then Giselle give an example. 

‘If for example, Jean send Loki in the past, Loki might avert the future where the Universe was destroyed but at the same time, it might be that Loki created a diverging world of an event where the destruction of the Universe didn’t happen in that divergent world.’ 

Morgana still seems puzzled and Giselle continued on not caring whether Morgana understand it or not. 

‘Which means, Jean, Hirate and Sofia and the inhabitants of the original Prime Earth of the original timeline would still be fucked. Which means the divergent world will also be destroyed because what matter is what happens in the Earth prime of the true timeline. Because in that Final battle the level of power by the God of Death that he used nuke all realities, timelines and dimensions other than those worlds beyond the Source Wall’ 

‘So, what was the solution?’ Morgana asked. 

‘This is the ingenuity of Time God Jean.’ Giselle said as she admires the plans of Time God 

‘To be honest time travel has no rules that we know of. If there is one person that knows of such rules it is the Time God.’ 

Morgana nodded  

‘So what he did was to overturn the Laws of the Universe, and not only our Universe Laws of Time. He rewrote the Laws of Time. He did not send Loki to the past. To make it simple He sent traces of the future to Loki of now, of a possibility of the future. Because the future where we come from do not exist the moment Jean rewrote the Laws of Time. So, if the future do not exist, how could Loki create diverging timelines or world of a separate time since he did not come from the future?’ 

‘But you said, the future also exist?’ 

‘Yes, in a way.’ Then Giselle proceeded to explain 

‘If….Loki failed in his quest or whatever plans he concocted with Jean, Hirate and Sofia, then that future we lived in, will solidified and will become a reality. The tragedy will repeat and this time, I don’t think Jean would be able to rewrite the Laws of Time a second time.’ 

Morgana take a deep breath and breathed out.  

Now some of the answers was resolved. 

She always wondered why didn’t Loki just came to the past with all of his power. Or any of artifacts from the future.  

Why….become weak like that and start again, delaying his plans.  

It is not that he didn’t want to bring them, he couldn’t bring them 

It is also why she was always trapped in that dark world of pain. Because her soul has nowhere to return to.  

That future is nothing but a dream. She should be worried that when she enter that dark world, the soul has a place to return. Because that means the future is the same. 

She didn’t know whether she should feel happy or sad about it. That is the Price she pays for ripping the Laws of Time and trying to send her soul to the past 

‘Thanks for your answer, White Witch.’ Morgana said. Giselle only harrumphed as she continues lathering her body with the water, ignoring Morgana completely. 

Then Morgana disappeared from Giselle sight as she went away back to her stone hut in the middle of the forest as she tries to divine the position of her father.  

Morgana knows Giselle don’t like her so she quickly make herself scarce. 

Giselle on the other hand sighed. 

‘She is not that bad you know’ she said. At first if people heard it people might thought she was talking to herself but then a tortoise appears.  

The tortoise eyes flashed green and then a green mist emanates from its body before it turns back into a black serpent with the length of five meters. 

On top of a tree, a raven caw.  

Giselle look towards that raven and knows He is here. She thought it was a nice prank to turn the animal omens of God of Mischief into a tortoise.  

Transfiguration is kind of her specialty. 

Then the serpent speaks. 

‘Giselle, it is time to choose’ Giselle shakes her head and she sighed again 

‘Like always, you have eyes and ears everywhere, God of Mischief’ 

‘It has been a long time seeing you comrade’ the snake sounded as it slit eyes narrowed down on Giselle. 

‘Always impatient’ 

Smiling at the talking serpent, Giselle tell of her decision to Loki 

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This is a long chapter. And no LS. Instead it is the continuation of what happens in both of the main storyline. The Partition of the World Arc and the Secret War for the Future Arc happens at the same time. This chapter has about 5 thousand three hundred word including the Preview word count. 

Anyway you might feel frustrated not seeing Azief for these couple for chapters so here is a preview for what happens next in LS. PREVIEW 

‘Senior we are from the World Government. These two people have conflicts with the World Government. Hope Senior would not make it hard for us.’  

Nikolai said hoping that the World Government name would scare these two seniors.  

While the two seniors are powerful, they could not be more powerful than the World Government, right?  

Nikolai has seen many expert in his line of his work and met some reclusive experts that did not want to enter the spotlight.  

And while they are uncooperative at first when they hear the World Government they would usually give some face. 

Nikolai expected the Senior to say something to cover their dignity and then they will go and let his squad do their job but he was bound to be disappointed. 

The Hooded man then said 

‘So?’ 

The woman chuckles 

‘What if we decide to make it hard for you?’ the girl said playfully. 

‘Then, the World Government will not let go of you!’ Nikolai said sternly. Since soft tactic don’t work, he could only threaten them both. It was then the Hooded Man laugh like he heard the funniest joke. 

‘Let go of me? They should’ve been grateful that I did not seek for them!’ Nikolai was about to say something when the Hooded Man said 

‘I have spare your Island of any casualties last time and only broke it. Do you think I am a kind man?’ 

It was then whatever word Nikolai was about to say get stuck on his throat. He then finally realizes something.  

It dawned on him. The only people who could say these kind of thing while not fearing the World Government in the slightest is only one person. 

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So, there you have it. Preview for next chapter. Hehehehe. If you like it please leave a comment and donate if you can. That would really help. 

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