World“s First Demon Lord Chapter 56: First Impressions Are Important For When You Meet Your Nemesis
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April 23, 6:22 am, Canberra, Australia
The Sun smiled sadly as it watched the Moon glow.
"Why don't you show your brilliance, my dear?" he asked. He had seen the Moon shine before. Their glow had been enough to dazzle the sky in a myriad of colors.
"I enjoy watching you," said the Moon, giggling. "If I shone, I wouldn't be able to see you."
The Sun conceded, smiling. At the same time, he felt a little ashamed.
If only he were stronger, he would be able to stand beside the Moon. If only he were stronger, the Moon would not have to hide itself. If only he were stronger, he could show off the Moon's brilliance for the entire universe to see.
If only he were stronger…
"Wow, so who are you supposed to be in this dream?" said a mischievous voice.
Gadiel blinked. He turned to the seat beside him, to find a blonde-haired, blue-eyed woman sitting next to him, eating popcorn. She was barefoot, in a silver one piece dress, with her hair coming down to her shoulders.
It was only then that he realized that he was sitting in an empty theater, watching a play unfold before him. Except the actors had suddenly stopped moving.
"Whaaat? Come on, act! Boo!" the woman yelled playfully, throwing her popcorn at the stage. The actors didn't move.
"I don't think you're supposed to be here," said Gadiel. For some reason, watching this woman act so naturally in this space felt...wrong.
"Why not? It's a free country, isn't it?" she said, grabbing another box of popcorn out of nowhere. She resumed watching the motionless actors.
"Yeah, I don't think that counts when you invade other people's privacy," said Gadiel. "There's laws against that kind of stuff."
"What law am I breaking? The law of breaking and entering someone's dream?" the lady snorted.
Gadiel didn't really have an answer to that.
"I mean it's pretty rude," he ended up muttering.
The lady thought about that, then turned to Gadiel.
"You're right. It is rude for me to barge in without introducing myself," she said, stuffing her face with popcorn.
"My name is Ai. I'm going to kill you."
She said it with a casual confidence, as if she was talking about how she saw a funny car on her way to work or something. It was just something that was going to happen.
"May I ask why?" said Gadiel after a brief pause.
"I mean you could," she said. "But like, why would I tell you?"
"Why are you going to kill me?"
"Because you killed my foot soldiers, man," said Ai, now looking at Gadiel with interest. "I mean, I get it, they were in your safe space or whatever but like...dude. Come on."
Gadiel felt his heart skip a beat.
"Wait, what?" he said. "I thought they were going to kill people if the nest got too big."
The only reason he had agreed to kill the nest was because he believed that if they were left alone, it would result in countless deaths. If she was implying that they wouldn't have killed anyone...that he had just murdered a bunch of innocent creatures...
"I mean, yeah, duh," she said. "They would've killed everyone on sight. But like...that doesn't mean YOU had to kill them."
"But if I didn't they would've killed a lot of other people," said Gadiel, annoyed and a little baffled. "You JUST said so."
"But not you," she said. "You're like, waaaay too powerful for them to deal with. You didn't have to kill them."
Ah. Gadiel understood. This lady was off her rocker.
"I don't know how to explain to you that I don't want other people to die," said Gadiel, annoyed. "It's kind of a bummer, especially when I know I could've done something about it."
Ai raised an eyebrow skeptically.
"Yeah, I don't think you believe that," she said, once again stuffing her mouth with popcorn. "There's no way someone like you can care about other people."
"What the hell is that supposed to-"
"Alright, this is getting boring," said Ai, standing up. Her silver dress sparkled as red markings glowed on her arm. She looked down at Gadiel, who was still blinking in surprise at how short this girl was.
"So, I'm gonna kill you, but I want to make it fun," she said. "So before all that, I'm going to ruin your life."
"Everything you have, I will take. Everything you want, I will destroy. Everything you care about, I will burn until not an atom of them exists in this world," she said.
Gadiel felt a sudden chill up his spine. Gone was the casual, carefree attitude she had before. He could see now that this lady was deadly serious. Her eyes were cold, almost as cold as Omar's.
"Just try to make it interesting for me," she said sweetly, before snapping her fingers.
The world screamed, and Gadiel woke up panting.
His entire body was slick with sweat. His heart was pumping like he had just sprinted a marathon. He took a deep breath, putting his head in his hands, mind swirling with thoughts.
What the hell just happened there?
Who was that lady?
Where did she come from?
How the hell did she enter his dreams?
Gadiel reached for his bedside table to check his phone for the time: 6:30 am. No, just changed to 6:31.
Bzzzzt! Bzzzzt! Bzzzzt!
Gadiel almost had a heart attack as his phone started vibrating. He read the name of the caller: Tarik.
Immediately, he picked up the phone.
"You saw her too?" he asked, without waiting Tarik to speak.
"Ai, right?" said Tarik. "In the dream in the middle of the desert?"
They talked for a while, discussing the differences in their dreams. Aside from the setting, it seemed like Ai had a different message for each of them.
She wanted to kill Gadiel. It seemed like she had some kind of grudge against him. Tarik, on the other hand, she wanted to recruit.
"What?" said Gadiel, not quite believing his hears.
"That's what I said," said Tarik dryly. "She was basically throwing herself at me. And when she wasn't she was saying how she could increase my power."
Increasing power. That reminded Gadiel of his dream before that Ai lady had rudely interrupted. About the Sun and the Moon.
"What were you dreaming about before she came in?" Gadiel asked, suddenly curious.
Tarik was silent for a while.
"I...don't know," he finally said.
Gadiel bit his lip. He couldn't tell if Tarik really didn't remember, or if he was hiding something.
"Were you dreaming about something before she came in?" Tarik asked.
For a moment, Gadiel struggled internally. On the one hand, he wasn't sure if Tarik was hiding something from him. On the other hand...Tarik was the one person who he had opened up to about his past. Sure, he might not have told him everything, but he had certainly told him enough to make him want to cut ties with Gadiel.
But he didn't. He stayed.
"I think I was dreaming about the Sun and the Moon," he said eventually.
Screw it. Gadiel wanted to trust Tarik, even if Tarik didn't trust him back.
He then went on to explain how the dream had unfolded, before the interruption. Tarik was silent the whole time, and stayed silent once Gadiel finished telling him about it.
"We need to look up this Ai person," said Tarik. Gadiel bit his lip; it sounded like he was avoiding the subject. Until he added:
"Because I think she might have something to do with the original Sun and Moon."
Gadiel blinked in surprise. Tarik had just made a bunch of logical leaps that made no sense to him. Tarik himself seemed to realize this, and laughed.
He explained that he believed that the dream he had been having was some sort of hint from the original Sun and Moon. He reminded Gadiel of the first dreams they had before they got their powers, the ones where they were told to eat the stones.
"I mean think about it," he said. "She interrupted a dream you were having about the Sun and the Moon. That means that she's probably related to them somehow."
"But she just...entered your dream normally?" Gadiel couldn't help but ask.
"I mean...I don't remember the dream," said Tarik sheepishly. "It might have to do with the Sun and Moon...but I don't think so. Otherwise I'd probably remember it."
"Plus, she was really...y'know. Into me," he finished.
Gadiel had a feeling that Tarik was embarrassed. He felt his stomach flip with jealousy as he remembered that Tarik told him he was bi.
"Oh," he managed to say. There was something thick in his throat.
Gadiel was surprised with himself. He hadn't expected to react this badly. In the past, he had been pretty okay with how Tarik was attracted to women. Why was he feeling like this now?
He swallowed the feeling, forcing it down. He chided himself for being so petty. So what if some woman was flirting with Tarik? It wasn't like Tarik was into it, even if he was into women.
That thought managed to calm Gadiel's raging emotions a little. Enough that he was able to think clearly again.
"Do you think she purposefully interrupted the dream?" he asked. "In order to stop me seeing something important?"
Maybe not completely clearly.
"It's possible," said Tarik, solidifying Ai as an enemy in Gadiel's heart. "I'm more worried about what exactly her plan is."
"What do you mean?"
"She came to both of us in a dream, clearly stating her intentions to both of us," Tarik replied. "There was no way she didn't know we would tell each other about this. So why would she be so blatant with her motives?"
Gadiel frowned. That made sense, but…
"What makes you sure that she wasn't lying about her intentions?" he said.
But he knew the answer as soon as he asked the question.
"I mean, I don't know, not really," said Tarik. "But it's more just..."
"She doesn't seem like the kind of person who lies about her motives," Gadiel finished.
They were silent for a moment.
"Those kinds of people are so annoying to deal with," Tarik sighed. "They just don't know when to give up."
Gadiel smiled and he felt a little better.
They talked for a little while. Tarik reminded Gadiel to check up on his family before hanging up.
"After all, she did say she was going to go after everything you care about," he had said.
Gadiel stared at his phone for a while, a complicated smile on his face. Didn't Tarik know that he cared about him the most?
He set his phone aside, putting in a reminder to call his family later, and went back to sleep.
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