The palace's interior was similar to the one where the human hostages were being kept, a glass ceiling with pillars all around. Only difference was that this one was much larger, mostly empty, and had a staircase leading up to a giant red mirror.
It was the transportation mirror that they needed. However, they would have to pass by the tall Vampire with midnight green hair standing in their way.
"Look who finally arrived~." Said the Vampire standing before them calmly. "You kept me waiting quite a while, didn't you? Redblood."
'Two.. Four... Six Nobles...' She counted inwardly.
Sangrea reluctantly stepped back, understanding the true threat of the situation.
Even though the midnight green haired Vampire had been hiding its power from them, it was obvious to someone as sensitive as her.
He was a vampire lord. A Vampire Noble ranked at the top of the Hierarchy of Vampires.
Duke, Marquess, Earl, Viscount and Baron. These were the five ranks of the nobility which followed after the King. At the very least, a Vampire Lord would be an Earl.
These nobles were far more difficult to deal with than regular nobles.
"Xavier, we need to retreat for now, he's not someone we-"
Xavier and Sangrea's eyes widened as, in a fraction of a second, the Vampire had disappeared from their line of sight before a hand landed on their shoulders from behind.
"Leaving already? We can't have that..."
Their hearts sank as they turned to attack him, but Xavier, who was a second slower than Sangrea, was barely able to put his guard up as something crashed against his face before he was sent flying down the hall.
As for Sangerea, she had placed a dark shield to block the attack from reaching her, but she was left stunned to watch as the Vampire lord easily shattered through the shield with the momentum from the swing in inflicted upon Xavier.
At that moment, his fist slammed against her stomach as she tried to leap back and blasted her over to the staircase where Xavier had crashed down the hall.
Both of them coughed blood in response to the impact.
[Hyper-Regeneration: Level 1]
After recovering from the attack, Xavier and Sangrea got up only to have their heads dug into the staircase further by the Vampire Lord's hands as the Vampire Lord appeared before them.
As the Vampire Lords repeatedly crashed their heads against the staircase, veins bulged out of their necks as he began squeezing and crushing their skulls.
[Shadow Manipulation: Shadow Bind.]
Xavier swung his swords at the Vampire Lord's arms, while shadow chains erupted from Sangrea's shadow towards him.
The chains and sword swings missed as the Vampire Lord's figure disappeared in a flash before reappearing a few meters away.
[Hyper-Regeneration: Level 1]
[Energy: 209 -> 206 -> 202/220]
In spite of his energy being depleted from his regeneration, Xavier managed to get into a proper sword stance as he glared at the Vampire Lord.
Even after the regeneration, his arms were trembling and he was still dizzy from the previous impacts to his skull, showing just how powerful he was.
Even with his strength, Xavier did not care. It was clear that the Vampire before them was in command, the six nobles behind the pillars hadn't yet moved without being instructed, he also had the strongest presence.
This meant that he was the leader. He was the one behind his family's pain... Just that fact alone was all Xavier needed.
The moment he moved to take a step forward and force himself to attack-
[Gravity Manipulation: Gravitation Field.]
Xavier's feet dug into the ground in response to a heavy load suddenly falling on his shoulders. With every passing moment, the force only grew stronger, forcing him to crouch to the ground.
Sangrea, who was focused on catching the Vampire Lord with her shadow chains, was also interrupted and forced to kneel.
In the blink of an eye, the dark chains that were chasing after the Vampire Lord collapsed before him. Their pursuit ended.
"Of course, it's gravity... Damn it..." Sangrea cursed as she slowly began to rise upwards alongside Xavier.
Xavier, who was barely able to stand and support his body weight, opened his eyes as a kick appeared before him, the feet had a gravitational field surrounding them. It was no ordinary kick heading for him-
From the right, the kick penetrated Xavier's head, launching him over to the left before he collided with Sangrea.
The pair across the stairs together, before crashing and denting the stairs' steel handrails.
[Hyper Regeneration: Level 1]
"This was disappointing, it seems you are a Redblood only in name." Said the Vampire Lord as he drew his sword whilst pressing the button on the handle.
Spikes resembling fangs protruded from the handle before piercing his hands. The jewel on the pommel of the sword began to fill with blood. This sword was more sinister than anything else Xavier had seen before.
[Gravity Manipulation: Gravitational Pull.]
It was as if the Vampire Lord had become a magnet at that moment as both Xavier and Sangrea's figure were launched towards him at insane speeds.
At the very moment the Vampire Lord was about to swing his sword at their approaching figures, he noticed something was wrong.
He saw the steel chains wrapped around Sangrea's back, as part of her dress had been torn by the previous impacts. Unbeknownst the Vampire Lord, those chains were the ones which sealed Sangrea's powers.
Unapprehended by him was the fact that a part of the chains was missing, the silver skull linking it, for Xavier had removed it.
As soon as the Vampire Lord swung at them to finish them off, the seal was lifted.
*Shatter* *CRACK!* *BOOOM!*
A dark surge of energy burst from Sangrea, parrying the Vampire Lord's swing before forcing him to retreat and take a few steps back.
Each Vampire Noble in the room watched with widened eyes as the transformation unfolded before them.
Dark shadows emerged from the ground as Sangrea's figure halted in the air. The shadows covered her in a bubble of darkness and through the darkness, they could see her changing form. Parts of her body were expanding.
Xavier grinned as he witnessed this since he'd been trying to remove the seal since the beginning of the battle.
'If that fucker hadn't interrupted me all those times... The fight could have started this way while I focused on fighting the nobles at the back.'
Even though Xavier knew he wasn't strong enough to face the vampire lord, if he used all of his leveling up options, he had a chance of doing so, especially with full body recovery.
But why go through all of that when Sangrea could weaken him for him?
"You... You not only did you insult my bloodline... But you also dared to harm my husband..."
When Xavier saw Sangrea emerge from the dark bubble, his eyes widened. It wasn't just her voice that had changed, but also her figure.
It had matured.
"I'll show you... Hell." Said Sangrea as her true form revealed itself.
- Next Chapter Preview: Rewind Level 0: Origin.