Next Phase (3)
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Chapter 190: Next Phase (3)

It's been hours since Shiki's death. Shiki's people had decided if they would stay or leave. Most chose to stay, join the side of an Emperor, but a small portion of people decided to leave and start life anew. I didn't have any problems with that. But—

I smiled, "Before you leave, I would like to hold a small Banquet to wish you your new life," the people gathered in front of me looked confused, some suspicious even. "As it stands, I respect people's will. Since you guys want to leave, I would like to feed you one last time to ascertain that I would never go after you guys. I hope you will wait a while for the food."

There was a slight hesitation, but after a while, everyone nodded. Why would they not? They were hungry and tired, and some even believed they would be hunted down, so they needed strength to run from here. And for strength, they needed food.

I smiled at this. Then I turned to look at the soldiers from Skypiea, especially the cooks who had arrived at this place a few hours ago and gave them a nod, implying something.

I then turned back around to the crowd and gave them a bright smile. "Alright then everyone, please enjoy yourselves."

-

-

Walking out of the crowd, I kept humming softly. As a whistle entered my ear.

"Wow, you bastard." 

I chuckled hearing the voice and turned around, giving her a grin. "What do you mean, Raki."

 

A sore-jawed Raki scoffed at my smile. "You plan to poison them, don't you?" She leaned on the wall and looked me in the eyes. "Or am I wrong?"

I shrugged at her scoff. "Well yeah, you aren't wrong. I mean they are my enemy, just from the fact that they are the remnants of my old enemy." I shook my head as Raki raised an eyebrow.

"But you killed the ones who are loyal to Shiki. So if they are alive that means they aren't supposed to be loyal, right?" Raki asked, genuinely confused.

I smiled. "They aren't loyal to Shiki, yes, but the anger in them was clear. They were angry that I killed their brother, their sisters, their friends, and their sworn comrades, they were very angry." I added. "And if you are asking why I didn't kill them outright since they are really angry with me, it's because every one of the soldiers is angry with me. I can't kill all of them, now can I? The ones who joined me can be moulded later, but the ones who left me can't be moulded later since they would be out of my grasp. So I need to take precautions where they can't go against me in the future, and that would be – by killing them." I continued. "But I can't kill them outright either, because if I do I would seem like a guy who doesn't value his own words. Thus, a bad leader. So I am using a poison that would kill them in a week."

Raki blinked at my explanation as realisation hit her. "Ah... That's fair- err, not really fair, but logical." She again went through my explanation in her head and nodded. "Yeah, I see no problem in what you did."

This caused me to laugh out loud. "And what if there was a problem in my judgement?" I walked closer to her. "What if I wanted to kill them just because it would satisfy my bloodlust?" I stood in front of her and pinned her against the wall. "What if I wanted to kill them because their face annoys me?"

I stared at her face as her indifferent expression changed to that one of a… "Pft-" funny one. "Bro, you think I would care? Fuck them in the ass for all I care." She locked her eyes with mine before wrapping her arms around me, still maintaining eye contact. "I won't even mind if you kill me, for fun or for actual reasons. I wouldn't mind at all."

Well… I had a guess this would be her answer. As nice as I feel, that's a huge weakness of hers. I have no doubt she would go crazy if I suddenly disappeared one day.

"Raki," I called her as I hugged her back. "Don't do anything stupid, ever."

«—*★*—»

|General Pov|

"Hm… it's good that it's not falling, or I would have to take action myself." Floating in the air, Amon silently observed the small islands floating in the sky. Merveille was pretty huge. And with Shiki dead, it was supposed to fall on the sea like it did in the canon. Yet, it didn't because Amon didn't want to.

Island clouds. Amon had too many island clouds to spare. In this world, there are kilometres upon kilometres of island clouds all around the sky, but since only a small part of them is inhabited – Amon can use them as he pleases. 

To not make the islands of Merville fall, what he did was control the electromagnetic bond of the clouds and moving them here, a few days before the mission started. Currently, all of the small rocky islands were floating above chunks of clouds, even without Shiki's powers.  

"Still…" Amon frowned. "This is too risky. The clouds won't be able to hold the islands for long, they weigh a lot. I should probably start moving them to the White-White sea." Raising his hand, Amon focused on the electromagnetic bond of the clouds, commanding them to move and directed them towards where he wanted.

Amon growled seeing the islands moving ever so slowly. "Argh… it would take years. So slow."

«–★–»

"Wow, the island is moving. Brother must be moving it- Auk!" Raki groaned as her face morphed as if she had just bit a lemon.

"Fuck me," she rubbed her jaw that was hurting badly. Shiki punched her face quite a few times, and her teeth were broken again and again. They have healed, yes, but the pain hasn't vanished fully. In fact, they hurt. Hurt a lot.

She went to Amon for this exact reason, to ask where she could find some ice, but he just replied with, "How the fuck would I know?" Raki shook her head softly as she leaned back on the chair, pushing a bag of ice on her sore spot that she had gotten from Tsumi in the end.

"Sigh…" suddenly, she recalled her conversation with Amon. She knew for a fact she was too much dependent on Amon. But… she couldn't bring herself to hate that fact. Amon was her… everything. Father, mother, brother, sister, wife, husband. Everything one can possibly imagine.

She could dream of a day where there would not be a Raki, but she couldn't dream of a day where there won't be an Amon. Was this love? Or obsession? Frankly, she didn't know nor wanted to know. Because she didn't care. What mattered most was the fact that she, Raki, was his – living for his use.

Was she brainwashed by him perhaps? Or was she manipulated like Robin and Hancock? After all, this is not how a normal person should think, is this? She realises that, but she knew that wasn't enough to change anything. She was brainwashed? So what? She liked how things were this way, so there was no need to think of eerie and depressing things. 

She stared at the air and dozed off for a while. Thinking about the meaning of her existence. Only for a chuckle to leave her lips as she realised, fuck it, it doesn't matter either way. She would just be by his side until he doesn't want her to. She would just be his shadow, until he doesn't want her to.

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