Gaury carried out some of the boxes from the previous raid and was putting them in the storage when Zelgadiss came up to him.
"So, that’s the Lina you speak highly about. Doesn’t seem to be much of a woman though." He said as he sat down on top of one of the boxes. "Sure, she’s cute and all that but she doesn’t have much cleavage and she definitely isn’t exactly the type of personality I thought you liked."
"Well, she’s definitely more of a tomboy than a lady." Gaury agreed as he took a break and sat down across from Zelgadiss. "But that’s Lina. And she’s suppose to be that way. If you want a ‘lady’ you should find Lady Luna."
"You mean Lina’s sister?"
"Yup, she’s a ‘lady’ down to every detail." Of course Gaury can say that since he didn’t know Luna’s other side, as Zelas would call it the ‘Darker Side’. "I like Lady Luna, she’s nice, considerate and fair. It’s strange though she isn’t married yet."
"She’s not?" Zelgadiss asked with his eyes wide opened. "Is she engaged?" Gaury shook his head at Zelgadiss’s question.
This is weird. Zelgadiss thought to himself. He knew that most ladies were married off by the time they were twenty and he had heard before that Luna was twenty two. "Why not?"
Gaury just shrugged his shoulder at that question. "I wouldn’t know. I haven’t seen her in a couple of years. Lina just told me that Lady Luna wasn’t engaged or married."
Amelia was packing her things into the small bag Shilfiel had given her as a gift. In fact most of Amelia’s things were gifts from Shilfiel or Lin. Lin had given her a pair of pajama’s since Amelia’s had been destroyed on the raid, Shilfiel had given her hair brushes and all the other essentials. Amelia didn’t think much of it though. Once she got to Lakuteria she could get what she wanted.
"Amelia-san are you ready?" Shilfiel came into the room and asked. Amelia nodded as she swung the bag over her shoulder.
"It will only be for a little while, we will soon send you and Filia-san to Lakuteria."
Although it took a lot of trouble Gaury and Shilfiel had been able to convince Zelgadiss to take Amelia with him. Of course the main reason they were able to persuade him was that Amelia will soon be gone off to Lakuteria and he most likely won’t see her again.
"I understand." Amelia said with a smile. "…What about Lina-san?"
"Well…. we don’t know. It all depends on what Zelas-san has to say and what Xelloss-san decides on." Shilfiel replied.
"It will be safer on my part if Lina-san comes to Lakuteria. That way I won’t have to deal with Luna-san’s wrath." Amelia sighed to herself. "Luna-san is scary and I don’t want to deal with her at all."
"You mean Lady Luna?" Amelia nodded at Shilfiel’s question. "I heard from Gaury-sama though that she is really nice."
"Nice?" Amelia asked. "She’s polite, she’s considerate, she’s Lina-san’s sister." Amelia finished. "Even Lina-san fears her."
"…Is she that bad?" Shilfiel asked as she grew stiff. Amelia nodded.
"No one would want Luna-san and Neesan after them. If they do their some sort of freak." It sounded mean but anyone who knew Luna and Glacier would have agree with Amelia with out even thinking twice. Of course Shilfiel didn’t know either one of them. So she just kept quiet and didn’t say anything.
"Besides I don’t think Sir Graushelaa would keep quiet if he knows about this thing." Amelia added. "Sir Graushelaa gives me the chills."
"…Amelia-san….you didn’t just say….Graushelaa did you?" Shilfiel asked, her face ashen.
"Shilfiel-san are you okay?" Amelia asked in worry of Shilfiel’s health. "You don’t look well. Should I go inform…"
"AMELIA-SAN!!" Shilfiel cut her off in a strong voice. "Answer me. Did you just say Graushelaa?" Shilfiel’s green eyes looked straight into Amelia’s that Amelia flinched. "Amelia-san please, answer me."
"Ha-hai." Amelia replied. "I did say Graushelaa."
"How do you know him!?" Shilfiel demanded as she shook Amelia’s shoulders. "Answer me Amelia-san." An order, not a request.
"He, he’s the respected …………lawman in the…….community where we came from and…" Amelia tried to reply smoothly but Shilfiel was scaring her. "And….he’s….he’s one of Lina-san’s suitors."
The moment Shilfiel heard that she dropped both her hands to her sides.
"Graushelaa is….Lina-san’s suitor?" Shilfiel looked dumbfounded, as if she couldn’t believe what Amelia had just informed her of.
"Ye-yes. I’ve met him a couple of times and he, he is extremely persistant."
"Lin told me though that you said Lina-san was not engaged!!" Shilfiel accused Amelia.
"She isn’t!!" Amelia screamed in attempt to defend herself. "She isn’t engaged!! She’s never agreed to Sir Graushelaa’s offer!! I will admit that I believed he was the best out of Lina-san’s suitors but that was because he was the only one who could handle and liked ‘Lina Inverse’ instead of the ‘Second daughter of the Inverse Clan’!!!!!!" Amelia rushed into informing.
Shilfiel pressed her slim fingers against her temple. "Oh lord…please don’t take this life away from me." Shilfiel whispered to herself.
Mean while the girl that seemed to be the center of the discussion was enjoying the food that Lin had prepared. In truth if there was good food this girl was happy and nothing can really do much to destroy her mood.
"OISHIIIIIII*" And of course she didn’t forget to scream out in happiness if the food tasted absolutely delicious. "Ahhh Lin how can you cook so good!! Tell me the secret!!" She demanded to the girl who sat across from her.
"Ahh…Lina there really isn’t any secret, Shilfiel taught me how to cook." Lin replied as she smiled a little sheepishly.
"And now you can cook better than Shilfiel-san. Ne Lin." Xelloss smiled down at his younger sister and ruffled her hair.
Suddenly Lina couldn’t help but wonder what it would have been like if she had had a brother. Lin was obviously extremely attached to Xelloss and Xelloss obviously cared for Lin more than he cared for other people. If she had a brother would he be nice to her, care for her? Lina sighed and shook her head. Thinking about it would get her no where. She didn’t have a brother and that was final.
"Lina-chan what do you think of our island so far?" Zelas asked with a smile.
"It’s a really nice place. While I was coming here I noticed a lot of kids playing on the grass and swimming in the ocean. Are they part of the crew?"
"Well, they’re still too young to be allowed to go out of this island but yes, they will be the crew members some day." Zelas replied with an elegant smile. "Oh and Lina-chan I hope you haven’t gotten too attached to that room Xel put you in."
"It’s a nice room but I’m not really attached to it. Why do you ask?" Lina replied.
"Well, I’m going to go on a raid soon, or as soon as Zelgadiss has the data. I’d like it if you can come along with us. Of course you will be entitled to your share of the treasure and I will make sure of that. What do you think?"
"It’s a nice offer but…I should get going to Lakuteria with Amelia and Filia." Lina bowed her head. "I don’t want to worry Neechan." She said almost to herself. Zelas smiled at the girl and nodded her head.
"I don’t need an immediate answer right now Lina-chan. Just think about it." Zelas clapped her hands and a few people dressed in servant outfits came out. "Now it is our time for desert and past time that Xel informed me on the previous raid." Zelas just continued to smile elegantly.
"This is my personal studio." Zelas mentioned as she opened the doors to the room that most light would come in during day time. She turned around and put on the candles that were located on the walls. "Take a look around."
Lina walked carefully so that she wouldn’t accidentely bump into any of the paintings. Lina had known a few artists and knew what was considered good or not. Zelas’s paintings certainly were good enough to be considered a work of a master. An obra**.
"Did you teach yourself?"
"Oh of course. It’s impossible to find someone that would come out here to teach one art. Although I must admit I’ve gotten a few ideas from some pictures I found on the raids." Zelas walked over to Lina. "Do you like any of them?"
"I think all of them are very good." Lina told her. "They are very well drawn, down to the very last detail."
Zelas’s eyes turned to points at that but she soon started laughing. "Don’t worry Lina-chan I’m not charging you. It’s my way of apologizing for wrecking your voyage, I’ll give the same curtesy to Amelia-chan and Filia-chan later. So, any one you like?"
Lina kneeled down and started sorting through pictures. There were a lot of landscapes and seascapes and a few portraits. Most of the portraits though weren’t the usual ones that Lina saw, instead it focused on people who were just…natural. One was of Zelgadiss seemingly engrossed in a certain project, another was of Lin playing with a dog, some were of Shilfiel and Gaury, others were of Valtierra reading. "Not many of Xelloss." Lina noticed.
"You won’t find ones of Xel in there." Zelas said with a smile. "It’s impossible to find Xel at an off guarded moment, much less sketch and then paint one. It’s easy with Lin, Shilfiel and Gaury, it’s only possible with Zelgadiss and Val when they’re so into something they don’t even notice you, but with Xel." Zelas just shook her head. "There’s been a couple of times I asked him to be my model for some pictures." Zelas went to a shelf and started rummaging through it. "Lin-model, Zelgadiss-model….here it is." She took out a stack of oil paintings and showed them to Lina.
Lina was surprised. The amount of paintings were actually fairly small compared to what she had thought, just that in all the paintings Xelloss had his eyes revealed.
"I asked him to reveal his eyes since I personally think he looks better that way." Zelas explained. "oh, here’s my favorite." She showed Lina the one which Xelloss was sitting on the moon lit beach. The light glow of the moon highlighted the whiteness of his face and arms, his hair seemed to blend in with the night sky, he wasn’t looking towards the artist but rather towards the horizon.
"This is probably the closes I could get to Xel in an unguarded moment. Although it isn’t completely unguarded to ask too much is a sin." Zelas’s voice was soft, as if she wasn’t really talking about the painting.
That didn’t mean much to Lina though at that time. Right now all she could do was stare at the painting and be mesmorised by it. It was the same as when she first saw Xelloss. She was mesmorized by him.
"Like it?" Zelas asked in a teasing tone of voice. "If you do, it’s yours to keep."
"I said it’s yours to keep Lina-chan. There for it’s yours to keep."