The Villains Need to Save the World? - Book 9: Chapter 523: Stabilizing the Palace Situation and the Encounter in the Royal Prison
At Emperor Alfred the Third’s chamber in the Gabriels City (Sword Capital) of the Gabriel Empire, Bella and Kriss made their way into this room that functioned as both a study room and a bedroom. Placed on the table in this room were a lot of drafted edicts. By the time the Northern Alliance was formed, Emperor Alfred the Third had probably known that he would not be able to protect his throne any longer, so this was his way to prepare for the future.
He had drafted edicts for all the princes. Except for the legitimate heir to the throne, Crown Prince Daniel, both Prince Glenard and Prince Burdis had an edict written up for them. Emperor Alfred the Third had made plans for the best and worst possible scenario. He even had one written for his son-in-law, who wasn’t even the current leader of Renald’s family, the young master Reynard.
In between the many edicts, Bella found one written for Grand Duchess Bellina, which seemed to have been crossed out. The handwriting on the edict did belong to Emperor Alfred the Third, but it wasn’t the emperor himself who canceled out the edict. It was possibly done by Reynard, the person who had only managed to usurp the throne and established the Renald Empire for one day before it was defeated by the demons.
Emperor Alfred the Third’s plan to pass the throne to Bella was unexpected because none of his princesses like Kriss was among the suitable candidates in his eyes. Even though they were all female, Bella had no idea why only she was given the privilege as she pondered about the true intention of the emperor’s decision.
“Bella, look here. Father had also appointed you as the future heir of the throne. So, don’t refuse it anymore!”
“No Kriss, I’ll still refuse. Your old man must have been temporarily confused. I’m a foreigner with no royal blood in me, it should not be me on that throne.”
Bella quickly refused Kriss. She was unsure about the true intention of Emperor Alfred the Third for writing the edict with her in mind. Even if the emperor himself willingly offered her the position, she would still refuse it because Bella would prefer to control the stage from behind the scenes than to actually stand in front of one.
The rest of the edicts here were not stamped with the seal of Emperor Alfred the Third as an edict without the seal of an Emperor was nothing more than waste paper. The difference between the edicts for Reynard and the others was that his edict contained the emperor’s seal. Unfortunately, even when Bella and Kriss had rummaged through the chamber, they could not find the emperor’s seal. Without it, the legitimate heir to the throne would be inevitably questioned.
While Bella and Kriss did not manage to get their hands on the emperor’s seal, they did, however, find other interesting things and among them were private letters sent by the Imperial Union to Emperor Alfred the Third. Although these were considered top-secret documents, nothing was secret anymore with the collapse of the previous imperial power. Normally, Bella was not the one to intrude in others’ private affairs, but the content of these letters did pique her interest.
Apparently, according to these letters, the Imperial Union was asking Emperor Alfred the Third to do anything within his means to weaken the most powerful territory on the southern part that was ruled by Grand Duchess Bellina, the Sarnia Duchy. Some suggestions were sent along with the letter on how the emperor could weaken the power of the Southern Alliance and among those suggestions was for Emperor Alfred the Third to take Bella as his wife.
In the opinions of the members and elders that made up the councils of the Imperial Union, regardless of how powerful a woman was, in the end, she would have to be married off, and they naively believed that as long as Bella was married and gained a husband, her power would be neutralized. Although Bella initially had no obvious hostile feelings towards the Imperial Union, she felt that it was definitely necessary to suppress the Imperial Union in the future upon reading these letters.
There was no reply from Emperor the Third towards the request of these letters. In his opinion, regardless of how strong Bella was, she was still marching under the flag of the Gabriel Empire as her force belonged to the empire. By weakening Bella, it would also mean that he would be weakening the force of his own empire. Emperor Alfred the Third needed to properly weigh his options because the request might be a trap set by another empire to bring him down. As for the decision, the emperor did not have a chance to decide before he was usurped.
In addition to these letters, they also found several imperial princesses that Reynard had used to succeed the throne. Bella and Kriss found several imperial princesses hiding and shivering in a secret room behind the emperor’s bed. These were the beautiful princesses that did not have the opportunity to attend the Hundred Flowers Festival and had stayed behind in the capital area of the empire before they were subsequently trapped by the outbreak of the infection.
These trapped beautiful girls were also the princesses of the empire, but their existence was easily overshadowed by the other princesses because they were not as famous. Even though they were not as well known as Kriss, the royal blood that ran in them was just as authentic. The fact that Bella had neglected them before this incident was a minor miscalculation on her part.
Like those beauties displayed in the hallway outside the chambers, the princesses were also regarded as tributes for the enthronement ceremony. After the birth of a new empire, these “former empire” princesses had lost their noble status as princesses and would be treated as slaves or, however, the new emperor deemed fit.
When they were found, these princesses were shivering in the secret room as they had previously been stripped off all their clothes. Iron chained collars were tied around their neck while they were being imprisoned like slaves. The princesses were also made to lie on separate rectangular wooden tables with their legs spread apart to form a “V” shape and were chained by iron rings on each side while their hands were tied together and placed on the top of their head.
The faces of the princesses were pale in fear. Their private, secret garden was forced wide open as if it were an invitation to admire the view. In such an enticing position, if they were to be seen by a man, they would definitely be forced upon till the break of dawn. To add to the excitement, their lower region had also been cleaned as all the excess body hair was removed until there was nothing but a smooth landscape.
Aside from the clear view of their lower region, the soft twin peaks on the princess’s chest were also being toyed with. The pair of red cherries that stood out of their bosom were tied and were pulled up by a thin, red rope causing the breast to be lifted by force. Right on top of the breast of these princesses, numbers were stamped on them with the red clay. These numbers were codes for the management of the “comfort ladies” used in the military.
After Reynard had his fill of enjoyment with these princesses, he planned to give them to the important generals in his army as a special reward. Fortunately, Bella was able to interfere with the plans just in time. These ladies were simply being prepared and had yet to be soiled. However, the sensitive parts of their bodies seemed to have been smeared with some strange medicine as puddles of strange water stains could be seen under those small tables. It was apparent that their bodies had been stimulated by these strange medicines.
Reynard’s marriage ceremony with the princesses was simply a show he put on so that he could legitimately appear to be the emperor’s son-in-law and would be able to succeed the throne. In truth, he didn’t really marry any of the princesses. The fact that he did not immediately send the princess to be enjoyed and shared between his soldiers was considered him saving the former imperial emperor’s grace.
These princesses used to look down on Kriss as they had regarded her as a weirdo because her silver hair was an unfounded symbol in the human empire. Even though they did not openly make offensive remarks towards her, they did criticize Kriss in private. Yet, regardless of how they used to disdain Kriss, now that they were placed in such a miserable condition, they had to set aside their ego and plead to Kriss for help.
“Kriss, now that you are here, please help us. We were wrong to secretly say bad things about you. It was our fault. Please forgive us!”
“This… Bella, what are you…!”
“It’s nothing. Kriss, these princesses and sisters of yours need a thorough body check in case there are any physical injuries! Could you please kindly call upon Noesha to come and have a look?”
“Well, if that’s the case, I’ll do as you say. Let’s head to the Imperial Prison as soon as we are done here.”
Taking a step forward with her back facing Kriss, Bella stretched out her hand and gently stroked the outer region of the secret garden between the thigh of the princesses. Seeing the strange water stains on her hand, Bella decided that these princesses would need some special treatment. Recognizing Bella, they were well informed of Bella’s strange fetish against girls as they wanted to call Kriss over to help them, but Kriss had already wandered far from them. Even when they wanted to scream, the only thing visible in front of them was the evil grin on Bella’s face.
“Grand Duchess Bellina, you… do whatever you want. As long as we can get out. Please don’t send us to the barracks!”
“Kriss may not be bothered by it but all of you need some special education. Just stay here quietly. If you run around, you will be sent to the barracks and be intimate with the soldiers.”
Bella held on to the chins of the princesses and warned them one by one with her menacing eyes. When it came to Bella, these princesses who had already become prisoners had no other choice but to submit to her. Under Bella’s guidance, they all opened up their little mouths and allowed Bella to place the gag balls into their tiny mouths. These princesses were then handed over to the Interdimensional Demon Noesha to be educated with special equipment.
Kriss, who had already left, did not know of the fate of these princesses as soon as they fell into the hands of the Interdimensional Demon Noesha. There was also a possibility that she did know but pretended to not know so that Bella and Noesha would be able to help educate these princesses who had once spoken ill of her. Once they were in the hands of Noesha, these princesses would be put through various punishments in different despicable ways.
In the depths of the imperial palace at Gabriels City, three secret areas were kept from the outsiders. The first one was the Stardust Palace, where the harem of the emperor resided and was controlled by Empress Deborah the Fifth. The second one was the treasury building that housed the finances of the entire empire. Last but not least was the Secret Imperial Prison, where various political prisoners were being held.
Bella had already previously visited the emperor’s harem at the Stardust Palace. She stopped by to take a look at the treasury building of Gabriels City. Compared to the wealthiest empire, the Manasvir Empire, the treasury of this empire was far lacking and inferior to the treasury over at the Manasvir Empire. The treasure area over at the Manasvir empire was full of precious currencies such as platinum and purple coins. The ordinary gold coins weren’t even qualified to be considered as part of the precious currencies.
As opposed to that, the treasury of the Gabriel Empire only contained gold. A large number of gold nuggets that had yet to be made into gold coins were also stored here. Since Bella had seen numerous other precious treasures, she was immune to the sight of gold and looked at the place unimpressively. After a while of looking at the place casually, she left the treasury into the hands of someone else and didn’t bother with it anymore.
The location of the secret Imperial Prison was located to the northwest of the Imperial Palace. The entire Imperial Prison, which was where the political prisoners were held, was placed inside a tall tower. This tower was then divided into two parts which were the upper level and the lower level. The upper level contained the cells that were placed above ground level, and as for the lower level, these were technically the underground dungeons.
The normal political prisoners were normally held in the upper level. Only those sentenced for treason or other equivalent serious crimes would be placed in the dungeon. But because the Imperial Prison was originally built to house the victims of the power struggles in the imperial family, it wasn’t unusual for the wrongly accused or victims of falsified cases to end up here. Those who ended up here would usually find it to be their final resting place.
Emperor Alfred the Third was formerly the person-in-charge of the Imperial Prison, and his guards, the Imperial City Guards, were placed in charge of this prison. Right after the wave of infection, the guards of the Renalds family had taken control of this prison. To be reduced to a prisoner when he was once the owner, even Emperor Alfred the Third would not have been able to predict his bitter fate.
Currently, this tower was being controlled by the demons that answered to the Demon King Bella. The demons had separated the tower and placed those infected by the Dark King as well as his subordinate into the upper level of the tower. Those who were placed in the dungeon were the political prisoners whose fate lay in Bella’s hands.
The environment in the dungeon was very bad as it was cold and humid. It was ironic that Emperor Alfred the Third was being imprisoned in a prison that was run by him for many years. One would wonder how the emperor would feel about his current situation. As Bella and Kriss headed over to him, the demons under Bella did not follow her. The human guards that guarded the dungeon had already fled their post during the infection wave. The demons that now guarded this place were concentrating their effort at the upper level where the infected and the Dark King’s subordinates were being held. This meant that the dungeon area was left unsupervised.
This underground dungeon was surrounded by pitch-black darkness while the candlelight that was used to light up the place was very weak. Luckily, Bella was able to rely on her unique night vision ability as a Demon King. She gently guided Kriss as they walked carefully into the dungeon. Those who were imprisoned here were all accused of treasons. Bella couldn’t tell if they were really guilty or innocent, but one thing was certain, those who ended up here would face their death here.
The doors to the underground cell were tightly sealed except for one small hole. It was hard to guess if the prisoners here were dead or alive as only one meal was served each day to prolong the life of the prisoners. Those who were imprisoned here were technically unknown to those on the outside because even the residents of the Imperial Capital itself hardly knew of this secret Imperial Prison. As such, only a select few would have known of its existence.
Bella and Kriss did not stumble upon any tortured equipment aside from the sealed cell along the way. Since the prisoners who were being held here were political prisoners who did not go through a public trial, they would not have the need to go through the torture interrogation process. As such, the torturing devices were not needed. Emperor Alfred the Third was locked in a cell at the end of the tunnel. As long as they kept walking forward, Bella and Kriss would be able to reach him.
Previously when it was still under the control of Emperor Alfred the Third, this prison was already packed and overcrowded. After the Renald family took control over it, they had sent many more people, especially those who had opposed his enthronement, into this dingy place. All of the ministers and members of the royal family of the previous empire who were unwilling to cooperate with him were sent into this prison.
The prison, which was already previously packed, was stuffed with even more people who opposed the rise of the Renald Empire. It was to the extent that the upper level that had long been idle was also packed. Since it was a rocky period for Reynard, who had just seized the throne, it wasn’t suitable for him to order a large number of executions of the opposing ministers. He was planning to wait until things had settled down a little before he would purge off all his opponents.
Since the place was so full, they could no longer follow the management of the original method of imprisonment, which dictated that only one convict should be placed in a single cell. Since the Imperial Prison was so packed, all they could do was temporarily install iron cages and place several prisoners into the same cage.
Renald’s family had actually helped Bella complete all the necessary preparation for a usurp of the throne. They had even disposed of all the political opponents as the final step to ascending the throne. As a result, Bella, who had stepped in midway through his succession, had taken away all his hard work. If Bella had any intention to succeed, all she needed to do was simply head back to the emperor’s palace and ascend the throne.
Even if Emperor Alfred the Third could not be present, his empress, who was currently being controlled by Bella, Empress Deborah the Fifth, could still step in and temporarily preside over the enthronement ceremony in place of his absence. The minister and royal families in this dungeon were acquainted with Bella and Kriss. Since they were not aware of the current situation outside of the dungeon, they didn’t dare to greet the two in case they were on the wrong side of the political struggle.
At the cell that was holding Emperor Alfred the Third imprisoned, the door of the cell was sealed with dozens of chains. Kriss fiddled with the key for a while before she managed to open the heavy cell door. Standing with his back facing Bella and Kriss was Alfred the Third, now in his shabby dragon robe. Placed on the wall in front of him was a map of the entire Gabriel Empire. The emperor was looking at the map and pondering. Unlike the many princes who were defeated, he was trying to recall a time in the past.
The emperor’s cell was far better than that of any other cell in this dungeon. Not only was it much more spacious, but the lighting condition here was also much better. Even the tables in the cell were full of food that looked like it had yet to be touched.
“Father, you should eat some. These dishes are getting cold.”
“Father-in-law, I am here to propose a marriage. Would it be possible for you to spare some time?”