Mommy Villainess Chapter 198
198 The Town Where Everything Began
"TILLY, I heard that Winter ran away!"
Tilly stopped folding her clothes when Luna entered her room. "Oh, you're late," she told the witch. "Winter, Solenn, and Jameson are probably about to land on Red Dessert by now."
Luna gave her a scrutinizing look. "You planned this with Winter, didn't you?"
She let out an exaggerated sigh. "What should I do, Luna? My son has run away and he even brought the princess with him. They're being accompanied by Jameson, but we all know that he's the most childish Keeper of all so we can't really trust him with the children. As Winter's mother, I should take responsibility and follow them, right?"
The witch let out a frustrated sigh while shaking her head. "Please say that you've already talked to Solaris about this," she pleaded. "You know that I will always take your side. But I'll feel bad if you disrespect the Fire Archmage's position as the leader. I mean, I know that you outrank him since you're the Supreme. Still, he took care of your clan when you disappeared."
"I know that," she said. "That's why I want to repay Solaris and everyone who protected the Fire Mages by claiming our rightful place which is the empire. While Solarium is a safe and peaceful island for our clan, I still think that it's too small for us. We deserve to live freely."
"Is that what they want?"
"They wouldn't have waited for me all this time if they were already contented in the life that they have now," she said with a sad smile. "And after living here in Solarium for five years, I've seen the eagerness of most Fire Mages to see the world outside the island. Most of all, they want to clear our name and make the Moonchesters pay for everything that they did to us."
Luna fell silent for a while before she nodded. "You're right, Tilly," she said. "It's not right for your clan to live in hiding when you've just been falsely accused by the Moonchesters."
"I know, right?"
"So, are we finally returning to the Royal Capital?"
"Uh-huh," she said. "And I want to return with a bang."
Luna suddenly looked nervous by her statement. "What do you have in mind, Tilly?"
"Nothing much," Tilly lied with a big smile. "I'm just thinking of a grand entrance that will give Aku Moonchester a heart attack."
"WE HAVE a good harvest this year, Your Grace," Amilo said proudly while looking at the pearls inside the biggest oyster that they just farmed a while ago. "We even managed to produce black pearls this time."
"It's all thanks to my wife," Kiho said while removing a black pearl from the oyster using a knife. "She taught us how to create a pearl farm from the water level that we have to use to the irritant that we need to insert inside the oysters."
Amilo, the jewel maker, was one of the few people his wife told him that he could trust.
The two of them could talk freely like that because right now, they were alone in the ship that he bought when he started the pearl farm.
He hated staying in the inns because ladies who recognized him would always approach him despite knowing that he was already married. He also didn't like being around too many people because most often than not, a few of them would turn out to be Emperor Aku's spies.
And so, he preferred staying in the ship whenever he was at Atlenta.
It's also a good time to fish fresh seafood.
Amilo nodded in agreement. "The duchess is amazing for coming up with this kind of business. Not only are cultured pearls actually real pearls, but they are also abundant. Since we can produce plenty of them, we can make them affordable than natural pearls."
"Uh-huh, my wife is really amazing," he said proudly.
"The problem lies in marketing," Amilo said. "The higher nobles are looking down on cultured pearls. They even call our pearls "fake.""
"Don't mind them. They're not our target market this time," he said. "My wife said in her notes that we should sell the cultured pearls to the nouveau riche instead of the vieux riche." He looked up at the jewel maker. "She also told us to create fashionable necklaces that will show-off a woman's neck. Before she disappeared, she's been planning to change the current fashion style of the ladies in the empire."
"Are you going to enter the fashion industry this time, my lord?"
He nodded. "My wife loved the light dresses from Pillas Islands."
His wife told him to check out the clothes in her wardrobe and contact the designer for a possible collaboration. It took him a while to do because he waited for their pearl farm to be a success first. And it wasn't like the cultured pearls were created overnight. They were nurtured for almost four years.
But he didn't stop working while waiting for the cultured pearls to be made.
Like the emperor mentioned before, their surveillance camera business had been a huge success over the years. He worked with Amilo to develop and upgrade the cameras that they produced using the spirit stones found in Mount Solace the mountain owned by the Prescotts.
Legally, his wife still owned every property under her name. But since she was declared "missing," all the rights to use her properties were transferred to him.
My wife really prepared everything as if she already predicted our separation.
He was even able to enter the food industry through his wife's help.
The duchess also owned a piece of land across the famous lake in the Royal Capital. When he read the book full of her well-thought plan, he found a note that said that she wanted to build a caf that sells cold drinks. It seemed like his wife didn't have the time to finish that plan.
And so, he took it upon himself to research and study until he was able to build the caf that his wife wanted.
I hope I make her feel proud of me someday.
"Your Grace?" Amilo called him worriedly when he suddenly fell silent.
"I've already reached out to Miss Charlotte Hamilton the island's top dress maker," Kiho continued to not make Amilo worry. "We'll be collaborating soon. I'm thinking of launching our new jewelry line featuring the cultured pearls with Miss Hamilton's new collection of summer clothes."
Amilo nodded in agreement. "`Sounds like a good plan to me, Your Grace."
"I FOUND the f*cking Black Serpent."
Winter was relieved to hear that. "Really?"
Jameson's eyes stopped glowing. Then, he turned to him and nodded. "My eyes are f*cking correct. The f*cking Black Serpent is indeed in the sea of Atlanta."
One of Jameson's abilities was his "navigator eyes."
Apparently, he could see the unique "warmth" of each individual that he had personally seen, touched, and talked to from miles away. Well, it was more like he could "feel" them. But once the individual was within his vision's radar, then he could clearly see them by then.
And that's exactly what happened.
After they landed on the Red Dessert, they discreetly travelled to the Royal Capital and got as close to the mansion of House Nystrom as possible. Then, from then, Jameson followed the traces of warmth that his father left.
That was how they ended up at the port town called Atlenta.
Jameson rented a small ship and now, they were in the middle of sea while surrounded by other ships and fisher boats.
"Where?" Winter asked curiously. "Which among the ships and boats around us have my father?"
"The one furthest from us," Jameson said. "How do you f*cking plan to meet the Black Serpent, Lord Winter?"
"My mommy taught me to always stand out and make a grand entrance," he said. "She told me a story about a superhero found in a frozen aircraft on the ocean floor. I want to reenact that and instead of an aircraft, I will freeze myself inside a fishing boat."
The Keeper looked surprised by that.
"That's so unnecessary," Solenn complained. "Why don't you just approach your father the normal way?"
"Didn't you hear what I said?" he snapped at the little brat princess. "My mommy taught me to never undermine myself. She calls it "being extra.""
The little brat princess just rolled her eyes at him. "Whatever," she said. "Anyway, once we're sure that the Black Serpent won't hurt you, we will leave right away. The Supreme gave me a mission and I don't want to disappoint her."
"Okay," he said. "But where are you going?"
"To the North," Solenn said. "The Supreme asked me to meet and guide her allies that are currently hiding in the North. Also, she gave me the important task of retrieving her father's remains and bringing it back to the Royal Capital."
"Are you fine with it?" he asked the little brat princess. "I thought you wanted to explore the Royal Capital."
She nodded. "Once the Supreme proves our innocence, then we'd have the right to live in the empire again. And when that happens, I can have all the time in the world to explore the Royal Capital. But for now, my duty as the Fire Archmage's daughter comes first."
He didn't want to say it aloud but that was kind of admirable.
Her title as the "princess" isn't for show.
"Lord Winter, are you f*cking ready?" Jameson asked him. "I'll prepare the f*cking fishing boat that you can f*cking use. If you think you're in f*cking danger, send us a f*cking flare from your fire Mana and we'll come and f*cking save you. But if you think you're f*cking safe with the Black Serpent, use your f*cking ice to assure us that we can f*cking leave without you."
That's a lot of "f*ck."
"I understand," Winter said, then he grabbed the ice crab mallet pendant in his necklace. "But I'm sure that my father will recognize me."
KIHO was "fishing" in the deck alone.
Amilo already locked himself up in his "work room" in the ship. Apparently, the cultured black pearls that they had harvested had inspired him to make new designs for their next line of jewelry. He let the man retire for the night instead of asking him to join him in fishing.
Artists like him work best when they are uninterrupted during their momentum.
Anyway, he was practically alone in the sea as well.
The other ships and fishing boats around him a while ago already went back to the dock. He planned to return as well but he wanted to catch some King Crabs and lobsters first.
He raised his right hand to command the water to move according to his will. That was his way of catching seafood. But much to his surprise, the thing that he caught was far too heavy to be crabs or lobsters. He had to use both of his hands to bring "it" up.
Lo and behold, he "fished" a frozen boat.
He carefully laid the boat on the deck.
What is it?
He didn't know why but his heart suddenly thumped against his chest as if he was excited for some reason.
When he kneeled down beside the boat to check if something or someone was frozen inside, his eyes widened in shock when he saw a frozen little boy lying on the boat. He immediately touched the ice covering the boat to absorb it until it disappeared.
Then, he carefully carried the child in his arms. He got worried when he felt how cold his little body was so he immediately went inside the ship. To warm the kid, he went straight to the kitchen and lit up the hearth that they used for cooking.
He sat close to it while rocking the little boy in his arms.
Please be okay
After a few moments, the little boy slowly opened his eyes.
And he got shocked by what he saw.
We have the same golden eyes
"Dad," the little boy said in a cracked voice. Then, he smiled at him as his little hand touched his face. "Do you recognize me?"
Did he just call me "dad?"
If it was another child, he would have probably thought that he was hallucinating or something.
But this boy is different.
Not only did this little boy have his eyes. He also looked like his mini version. And he wanted to believe that the warmth in his chest was his heart's way of telling him that yes, this child was really his.
The cherry on top was the necklace that the boy wore. It had an ice crab mallet pendant. He could feel that the ice used to create the pendant came from his ice Mana.
This boy was really his and every fibre of his being can tell.
"Winter," Kiho whispered, a smile forming on his lips. "You're our little rascal."
He didn't know where it came from, honestly. But maybe the words "little rascal" was embedded in the deepest part of his memories. It might have been so special to him that it wasn't entirely deleted from his mind.
"Yes, Dad," Winter said in a cracked voice. Then, he hugged him tight. "I missed you!"
Kiho hugged his son tight. Even though both their bodies were both cold, he still felt warm in his chest. He was happy to be reunited with his child. But of course, he had to ask: "Winter, where is your mommy?"
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