“It’s not a matter of appearances…it’s…you won’t understand…“ Anmi paused for second before staring at the ceiling full of hanging fish bones as if there was something be found there.
“What’s the problem?” I suddenly had a bad feeling about this whole situation, and it was getting worse by the second along with my unease.
Ignoring my question, Anmi threw a pleading look at the Eldest Prince, Weiderly: “…Weiderly, if you let me go this time, the next time I’ll…”
“You help me now or I’ll tell my little sister.” With that, Anmi caved in and a triumphant smile graced the lips of Weiderly: “Choose one, those are the only two choices I’ll give you.”
“Weiderly! Don’t push this cat too far!”
“I dare you to try and kill me then.” Weiderly rolled his eyes at the raging cat, clearly not paying any heed to his murderous intent.
Just as Anmi’s murderous intent was about to burst forth however, the hidden elder spoke up and warned the furious cat: “Anmi, rein in that aura of yours, we permit you to force him into submission but we won’t allow you to harm him.”
“…” From the looks of things, the one who was driven into a corner wasn’t the Eldest Prince but rather Anmi…
“Well then Anmi, what’s your answer?” The Eldest Prince smiled as he sat atop his platform. Judging from his confident expression, he must’ve already predicted that Anmi would never marry the princess. At the same time, he knew that should he bring up the whole matter of that betrothal, the Princess would definitely force Anmi into a marriage? That was roughly the whole situation as of right now. The biggest question however was why was he so adamantly against marrying the Princess?
While I might have only seen her once, I honestly didn’t see a reason for him to hate her so much.
“Anmi, if it’s not convenient for you to act, you can just leave this matter to us.” In the midst of his hesitation, I took a couple steps forward and stood between him and Weiderly: “As long as I don’t cause him any lasting harm, the Elders’ Consortium won’t interfere, right?”
“That’s right, as long as you do not cripple or kill him, we won’t interfere, however, try not to hit him too hard.” An unknown elder answered in a teasing tone.
“All right, even without crippling or killing him, I have a ton of methods that will make him regret ever being alive. Even for a cat, they should work.”
“…stay away, nyahh…what the hell is that twisted smile supposed to mean…Anmi save me…save me…” Perhaps it was because my smile was a little demonic at the moment, but the instant I took a step forward, the Prince cringed back in horror, retreating step by step until finally he reached the end of the platform. Yet for some strange reason, even though he was clearly terrified of me, he never once thought of jumping off that platform.
Speaking of which, I wasn’t kidding when I said I knew a ton of torture methods. The Ten Great Manchurian Torture Methods and what not, I knew them all; the internet was full of information on that subject after all. With nothing much to do back then, I took a quick look and then branched off even further. While I might have not remembered all of them, I could say with confidence in my heart that my arsenal was still quite full and ready for the Prince, should he be so foolish.
“You fiends! Don’t you know I’m one of the candidates for Cat King, representing the pride and dignity of our clan…to think you all will actually sit idly by and watch me get tortured by an outsider…where is your sense of decency? Your sense of honor? Have they all been eaten up by dogs?!”
“Your Highness, I don’t remember any dogs offending you.” Sinmosa glared at the Prince before turning to face me: “Mister Mo Ke, if it’s not too troublesome for you, how about leaving this chore to me instead, with regards to such methods, I’m glad to say that I know a few as well.”
“Noo…don’t hit me…nyahhh…”
In the midst of all that, the elders began their own discussion as well: “Is it really alright for us to watch him get tortured?”
“But the rules clearly state that as long as he doesn’t suffer too much harm, we mustn’t interfere, besides…”
“It’s rather fun to watch him get abused.”
“What a coincidence, I feel the same way as well nyah.”
‘With elders like that…all I can say is…best of luck, Your Highness.’
Now that the tables had turned once more on the Prince, right here, right now, there was no longer any doubt in our minds that this matter was finally settled…except who would have ever thought that all that did was stimulate his boundless desire to live.
The desperate Prince turned his furious gaze onto Anmi, the fires within so burning hot they could almost barbecue meat: “Anmi, I’ll ask you one last time, will you help me or not? If this continues, I’ll have no choice but to pay a visit to my little sister. You’d better get this straight, would you rather marry or MARRY?!”
“Don’t listen to him, we’ll turn him obedient. Besides, so what if Anmi stands with you, him alone isn’t enough to defeat us.” Seeing him dig at Anmi’s weak spot once more, I immediately tried to cut in and prevent the worst from happening. However, I was too late…
“Mo Ke…about that, I’m really sorry…”
“…Anmi…exactly what do you mean by that?”
“I don’t want to marry Meisian so…I’m sorry.” As he said that, Anmi lowered his head and took a wide step towards Weiderly before turning around to face us. Was that how he planned on showing his allegiance?
“I said so already, didn’t I? Even if you stand with him, it won’t change a thing.”
“No, that’s where you’re wrong, the moment Anmi stood with us, all your fates were sealed.” The Prince bounced right up and regained his normal regal appearance. “Did you all forget? This is MY territory.”
Even though I could distinctly feel that something was up, appearances still had to be kept up, even if we were destined to lose, we mustn’t lose in spirit at least.
“So what if this is your territory? Your guards have all fallen and the Elders’ Consortium have clearly stated they won’t help you. Sasani and Sinmosa can easily beat up Anmi so how is your defeat anything but guaranteed? If you really wish to continue resisting, don’t blame me for being rough.”
“You say the Elders’ Consortium won’t act? HAHAHAH, have you all already forgotten why you guys were even able to enter my castle and assault me without getting attacked by the elders? It was because Anmi was acting as your witness! He is the very proof that you all were sent by my foolish sister. But now, he’s my cat…as long as he doesn’t confirm your status, then you all will change from my sister’s external reinforcement to mere villains. Now that I’ve spelt it out for you, do you understand my words?”
‘…I get it now…even if the Purgatory Shadowcats allowed external help in their succession war, that only applied if said aid was guaranteed by someone of the Purgatory Shadowcats…since Anmi is the only proof we have that we were sent by the Princess, the moment he turns on us and calls us villains…the elders would immediately turn us into devil pancakes…’
Honestly speaking, the elders knew as well as I did that Anmi used to one of us, but things weren’t as simple as that. I had no doubt in my mind that those elders would immediately turn on us the moment Anmi outed us. Why? Because all these d*mned cats were insane!
“Anmi…when we entered the castle, you told us you were the most reliable cat…I have to say, you’re truly a reliable cat…”
“I’m sorry.” Those were the only two words he knew how to speak right now. Having said that, he turned his head away, not daring to look me straight in the eyes.
Thus, from that moment on, we were the ones who were in trouble instead…
“Anmi, you giant baddie, you dare to betray Mama?!” Still standing beside me, a visibly incensed Mo Na railed at Anmi while hopping up and down. However, scolding him now wasn’t going to change a thing and as such, I stopped her from wasting her breath any further.
Seeing us driven into a corner, the Prince burst out laughing ever so despicably: “Those devils down there, I’ll give you all a chance, will you join me or will you continue to resist me?”
Not only was the Prince beside himself with glee, even the shadowy elders seemed to be acting a little different now: “Oh my, what a turn of events, I guess that brat still has some intelligence left in him after all. Being able to mount a counterattack at this stage…how amusing, truly.”
“If Anmi says those devils are here to cause trouble, should we act?”
“What do you mean act? Just get the guards to do it.”
“Good point, hey, you lot, enough with the acting and get up! If you don’t stop right this instant, I don’t mind tossing you all into the Lava Lake to feed the fishes!”
With that irritable shout, those guardcats ,who we supposedly defeated, all stood up without a single scratch on their furry bodies. Seeing that, the Eldest Prince flew into a rage immediately: “What the nyah am I even paying you cats for, isn’t it to protect me?! You bunch of untrainable mutts!”
One of the Five-stars guardcats: “But Your Highness, we really fainted just now nyah.”
The other Five-stars guardcat: “That’s right…sleeping was just an afterthought nyah…”