Chapter 88:

Owing an Explanation

Draconia Offline

I’m standing on that ancient stone platform again, but my father is nowhere to be seen. That’s strange for two reasons. First, he promised to give me a few days off before I recover from my concussion and I believe his word, however weird that might sound. Second, I have never experienced a lucid dream on my own.

I can still feel my head hurting, but I’m not dizzy in this dream. I walk around a bit, not sure what to do. I have no idea how to wake up and it doesn’t seem like my father is coming. Now what? I look up and discover that the platform is part of a much bigger structure.

The dreamy surroundings that my father created have been hazy so far so I thought they are just a decoration, but what if there’s more to them? It’s not easy to muster enthusiasm for exploration with a migraine, but I push myself. If I can discover more about the secrets my father is hiding, I need to take that chance.

I walk for as long as the platform leads me and the closer I get, the less hazy the structure seems to be. I eventually reach the wall and touch it. It feels solid enough, definitely not just for decoration. I walk along it and, to my surprise, discover an opening with a wide staircase. Not willing to bother with something as unnatural to Celestials as climbing, I spread my wings and fly up, following the stairs.

I get startled when I’m suddenly enclosed between walls that seemingly appear out of nowhere. Everything looks even more solid now. I land on a marble floor and look frantically around. It might look ancient and alien, but it somehow resembles… a library?!

“Welcome supreme administrator!”

I twitch after the voice, but it echoes, giving me no hint of its origin. It sounds almost perfectly natural, but I suspect that it must be pre-recorded. What is this place?!

“Please, state your query,” the voice says politely.

Oh, so I was right—it is a machine. What is it doing in my dream? Is it real or just a figment of my dreamy imagination?

“Ehm… can you tell me about Draconia?” I ask, not sure how to formulate the query.

“Language not recognised,” it answers.

“Draconia dimension,” I try again. Maybe it doesn’t understand complex sentences.

“Language not recognised,” it repeats stubbornly.

“How can you not recognise the language when you clearly speak it?” I frown.

It takes me a few seconds to realise the truth and the revelation makes me shudder—it has been speaking in an alien language all this time and I just didn’t notice! Is that the Divementis language? And I can somehow understand? Understanding is one thing, though, how do I speak it?

“Draconia dimension,” I try, but English comes out of my mouth instead.

“Draconia dimension,” I repeat, but this time it’s Japanese.

“Ugh!” I get angry because the migraine is still killing me and I can’t focus properly. “Stupid machine, learn human languages!”

“Accessing information about human languages,” the voice surprises me by cooperating.

Wait, did I actually speak Divementis just now?!

“Human languages refer to the languages spoken in the dimension called by the locals the Earth,” it starts explaining. “Just like four ancient Draconian races, humans aren’t telepathic so they have to rely on vocal sounds to communicate.”

“Stop!” I interrupt it because that’s not what I’m interested in. I’ve confirmed at least one thing, though. This place is like the Divementis equivalent of Wikipedia!

“Tell me about Draconia,” I ask.

“Language not recognised,” it repeats.

I roll my eyes, sit down and envelop myself in my wings. I can understand the voice so well that I had no idea it was speaking to me in an alien language at first, but I can’t seem to reproduce it at will. Why did my father never mention it? If I can understand it, he didn’t have to bother using Japanese during our conversations.

A shiver goes down my spine and spreads to my wings. Now that I think about it… maybe he didn’t? Did we speak Divementis all this time and I just didn’t notice? What did that feel like? I’m trying to recall that feeling and it’s almost at the tip of my tongue. It’s as if that knowledge was somewhere deep within me all this time and I just wasn’t aware of it because I never got an opportunity to use it.

“Tell me about Draconia,” I repeat and this time I’m confident that I speak Divementis.

“Draconia is a world that was originally home to five sentient races…”

I want to celebrate that I’ll finally be able to learn something useful, but I suddenly get that familiar feeling of my body waking up in the real world.

“No, please… not yet!” I want to stop myself from waking up, but my body is transparent already. There’s no stopping it.


I find out that it’s not my body naturally waking up, but my partners trying to wake me up by force. For the very first time, I get seriously angry at them. How dare they? I could have finally learnt something! Who knows if I’ll be able to reproduce lucid dreaming on my own any time soon? They ruined this rare opportunity!

Because my head is still hurting badly, I forget to watch my mana channelling and accidentally push Erik and Noage away with telekinesis. I don’t push Gotrid only because there’s a natural barrier in my mind that won’t let me use my powers against Celestials. I regret it immediately because I see genuine shock in their eyes. However, guilt doesn’t mitigate my irritation.

“Ude maa te vor!” I hiss angrily and envelop myself in my wings. My feathers are all puffed, mirroring my annoyance.

Erik and Gotrid look at each other, even more shocked now.

“Your Majesty…?” Liana slowly approaches our bed and even slower sits in the corner. She’s bewildered. “Was that Japanese?”

“That was no Japanese, Viceroy,” Gotrid shakes his head.

Shocked, I put a hand in front of my mouth. Did I just speak Divementis to them? Did languages get jumbled in my concussed brain? Or was I too influenced by my lucid dream?

“Love, we’re truly sorry, but we had to wake you up. You’ve been sleeping for fifteen hours straight, we were scared,” Erik explains quickly.

My partners try to slowly approach me again. They know quite well that puffed-up feathers are a sign of a Celestial being irritated, but they aren’t the type to give up when it comes to me. They snuggle to me from both sides and tickle me until I open my wings again. Seeing an opening, Erik grabs me around my waist and puts me on his lap. Gotrid hugs my wings and starts to pet them.

“To be honest, it’s us who have a good reason to be angry right now, not you,” Erik purses his lips, but his hand on my wings stays as gentle as ever. “It seems you were keeping secrets from us.”

“M-maybe,” I admit hesitantly, this time carefully watching the language I’m using.

“Let’s start with the basics, Your Majesty,” Liana says slowly but resolutely. “Who are the Divementis and what is the language you just spoke?”

“It’s…,” I clutch Erik’s shirt, feeling desperate. While Liana is genuinely angry with me for keeping secrets, my partners are deeply saddened and disappointed that I was keeping things from them and that breaks my heart.

“You can tell us now, love,” Gotrid encourages me. “It must have been occupying your mind for these past few days, right? Of course, we noticed that you’ve been distracted and tired for no apparent reason.”

“Was I that bad at hiding it?” I sigh.

“Well, not really,” Erik shakes his head, “but we could see how exhausted you’ve been ever since we came to Japan. Even though Noage confirmed that you’re otherwise healthy, we were still worried.”

“Your Majesty, why did you feel that you couldn’t tell us?” Liana lowers her head, devastated that I didn’t put my trust in them.

“I didn’t want to worry you, yet that’s exactly what happened,” I murmur, embarrassed.

“So,” Gotrid caresses my feathers. “What’s the Divementis?”

“That’s how my father’s race is called,” I answer slowly.

“And that language you spoke?” Erik pokes me.

“The Divementis language,” I say. “I don’t know why I can suddenly speak it. I just can.”

“And how do you know all of that?” Liana tilts her head.

“Ehm… my father has been giving me training,” I bite my lip because there’s no good way how to say it.

“What?! When? How?” Gotrid’s hand caressing my wings freezes.

“During the past few nights when I was sleeping,” I try to explain as simply as possible. “It turns out the Divementis can visit each other’s dreams. That’s why I was so tired, my brain couldn’t rest properly.”

There are a few seconds of absolute silence during which everybody has to digest what I’ve just said. I can feel the maids and guards present in the room getting restless.

“I think Celestials, the Dragonkin, the Earthborn and Clawfangs were the original inhabitants of the dimension those monsters are coming from,” I continue when nobody’s saying anything. “According to what I’ve heard from my father and that monstrous alien presence, they were annihilated, possibly centuries ago.”

“So those Divementis, your father belongs to, managed to bring them back to life through us?” Liana summarises. “That makes you half-Divementis then?”

“That’s why my appearance was never fully human and now I’m not fully Celestial either,” I nod. “I saw my father’s real body and it turns out that androgynous features are the main Divementis racial trait. He said that the transformation wasn’t supposed to work on someone who’s a Divementis so only my human part changed.”

“Love, were you afraid to tell us?” Erik kisses my hair.

“Yes,” I admit, “but I was mostly afraid that you would try to prevent me from meeting my father. If you knew, you would surely make Noage drug me with something that prevents having dreams or you would make me leave Japan immediately.”

“You’re right, we would,” Liana doesn’t hide the fact and is clutching her fists. “Did he hurt you?”

“He was training me,” I say, but because I avert my gaze, she can tell that I’m not telling the whole truth. I was always a bad liar.

“Show us your memories, love,” Erik asks simply.

“I’d rather not,” I shake my head. “Besides, we don’t speak English in my dreams anyway.”

“Was he hurting you?” Gotrid takes my hand and kisses it.

“His methods might have been questionable, but it was only thanks to his harsh training that I was able to defend myself against that thing,” I claim vehemently. “If I didn’t learn how to use emotions to push back intruders, I would die yesterday.”

Everybody shudders at that thought. They realise now that their embodiment of magic could have died and that’s deeply disturbing for Celestials. Their jittered emotions make my head throb with intensified pain. I whine because excitement is never good during a migraine.

“His Majesty is getting exhausted, Your Excellency,” Gotrid observes. “I know that we’re all hungry for answers and angry that our Emperor was hiding the truth, but he’s hurt and needs to rest.”

“Further questions will have to wait until our beloved recovers,” Erik seconds.

Liana sighs, but she agrees and stands up. Ayala immediately takes her place, holding a bowl in her hands.

“I know that you’re still feeling nauseous, Your Majesty, but Noage insisted that he can’t be feeding you intravenously all the time,” the maid says persuasively. “Your intestines need to be moving and you’re eating very little as it is, we can’t risk your stomach shrinking.”

Gotrid takes the bowl from her and starts feeding me sweet rice porridge. They are very patient with me, I can take breaks, but I have to empty it whole. Liana oversees the process, frowning and thinking frantically, no doubt about what she’s going to tell the Celestial Council. I’m too tired to read her thoughts. I fall back to sleep the moment I finally finish eating.


I hope to have another lucid dream, but I’m sleeping too deeply this time. I guess it’s for the best because when I wake up again, my headache is much more manageable. I’m really glad that I don’t need to go to the bathroom anymore because I’m lying squeezed between Erik and Gotrid.

I’m relieved that they took me being confirmed to be half-alien well and I feel sorry about hiding the truth from them. Maybe I should have told them after all. Who else should I ultimately trust than my partners? They support me in everything I do and are taking care of me all the time, no wonder I hurt their feelings by hiding things from them. Will they forgive me?

However, while I do regret it, I also don’t. Liana said it clearly—if they knew, they would try to stop me for sure. I did what I had to do for the benefit of Draconians and Celestial overprotectiveness would only get in the way.

“Are you awake, my Emperor?” Cien asks from behind the curtain that envelopes our bed, whispering.

“How could you tell?” I don’t understand because I hardly moved.

“Your mana emanation changes a tone based on whether you’re awake or asleep, Your Majesty, we can tell for quite some time now,” Cien explains and silently opens the curtain. “Are you thirsty?”

“A bit,” I admit and, careful not to wake up my partners, I sit up. So they can tell, huh? That’s potentially problematic, there’s no faking sleep anymore.

Cien hands me a glass of water using telekinesis and I drink it to the bottom. I do feel much better and my current headache is at the intensity I’m able to tolerate. I hand over the emptied glass and thank her.

“Are you angry with me as well?” I ask even though I can feel it from her.

“Yes,” she admits openly. “I’m angry that our embodiment of magic is constantly throwing himself in danger. I might not be in the Imperial Guard, but I do consider myself to be your protector, my Emperor. How would you feel if the person you wish to protect with all your being always tries to sabotage your efforts?”

I bite my lip. She has a point. Gotrid can protect himself, but if Erik tried to run away on a whim the way I sometimes forget myself during my flights or refuse the guards I assigned to him, I’d be seriously angry and worried-sick.

“We know that you do things only with the Draconian best interest in heart,” she continues. “You hid the truth from us because you wanted to get information from your father and you knew that we would stop you. Yes, we would. Your safety is much more important to us than getting intel, when will you finally understand that?”

“I know that I’m the embodiment of magic, but you’re over…”

“No, we’re not overprotective,” she doesn’t let me finish. “You’re the only one who can handle a race of proud conquest-hungry magic casters. With you gone, Celestials would go berserk and we would be at war with humans already. You lead by example and we’re honoured to keep our vices in check when following you. Nobody else can give us that. Just look at other Draconian races.”

My first reaction is to ask what she means by that, but then I realise that I do know. I just don’t want to see it. Patriarch Deminas keeps to himself in Russia and generally doesn’t care about his people in other countries. The Dragonkin are forming guilds, happily trading with each other, but seeing only crafting and technological advancement that goes with it.

The Earthborn King and Queen Werden and Twyla have their people much more united, but their only concern is the environment and bioengineering. There isn’t a day humans don’t see the Earthborn rallying against the exploitation of nature and they are gradually retreating into forests, starting to build their unique habitats.

Clawfangs are as wild as it gets, having no interest in politics and often antagonising the locals. While they generally respect their Supreme Alpha Emi, the packs are scattered across the world and Emi can’t oversee them all. Regrettably, Clawfangs don’t listen to orders Emi would convey to them impersonally.

Celestials are in total opposition to that. My word is the law for them so I have no problem coordinating Celestials all over the world. The Celestial Emperor holds absolute power. If I died, would they be able to choose another Emperor to replace me? Would they accept Liana for that role? Or does it have to be the embodiment of magic and they wouldn’t accept anyone else? What’s the embodiment of magic to them anyway?

I still fail to fully comprehend its meaning. In the game, it was just a fancy title that was mentioned in our lore, but nobody took it seriously. I was respected and admired as the best player, but I certainly wasn’t revered. I bet the Divementis themselves didn’t count on the ingame Celestial Emperor becoming a literal embodiment of magic after they launched our transformation.

The embodiment of magic. I know that I am that because all my cells are overflowing with mana and when I connect to Gotrid or Liana, they don’t come even close to how I experience magic. Did I develop such a mana capacity thanks to my perfect immersion ability? Or because I’m half-Divementis? Both?

“Go back to sleep, Your Majesty, you’re still hurting,” Cien says gently. “You need to gather your strength.”

“In a minute,” I say and close my eyes.

I just want to quickly check on everyone. I must have been sleeping for at least two days so I’m concerned for our safety. The shield is holding just fine, several guards are retaining it and there are crystals strategically positioned across the mansion to power it up.

I don’t feel anything suspicious or hostile so I relax and send my mind outside the premises. It seems to me that I’m gradually able to reach further and further. I wonder how far a trained Divementis can reach. How far does my father have to be to enter my dreams?

When I reach my current limit, I hover there for a while. I can feel the whole neighbourhood and I’m surprised to find out how many Celestials there are. Did my subjects, who didn’t fit in the mansion, desperately try to find a rental in nearby houses? Just how devoted are they to me?

I try to look for a Divementis mind, but I get nothing. Either they are positioned even further or they can shield themselves somehow.

“What are you doing, hon?” Erik startles me by suddenly speaking up and hugging me. I was so focused on the distance that I didn’t notice he woke up.

“Oof, don’t scare me like that,” I twitch.

“You were somewhere we can’t reach you again,” he gets saddened.

“Just checking our surroundings,” I say, “making sure we’re safe.”

“It’s three in the morning and you’re working?” he raises his eyebrow.

Then he doesn’t say anything and just keeps hugging me. He wants to make sure that I know he’s fine with me being half-alien. He doesn’t understand what a Divementis is, but he’s still prepared to accept everything about me, even the parts I’m not aware of yet. I get so moved by it that my eyes get wet.

“I could always see it, you know,” he whispers.

“See what?” I ask because I don’t want to be reading his thoughts all the time. Some things are better to be said aloud.

“Your thinking,” he explains and gently rubs the feathers between my wings. “You have the Emperor’s mindset, but you don’t think like a pure Celestial—like Gotrid does. And don’t let me get started on how I can never comprehend the way you experience the world. Half-Celestial and half-Divementis—what a divine combination.”

“Y-you!” I blush and my jittered emotions wake up Gotrid.

“Love? What are you doing in the dead of night?” he yawns and sits up.

“I couldn’t sleep anymore,” I admit.

“But you’re still hurting,” he hugs me from behind and envelops me and Erik in his wings. I’m happy that Erik doesn’t protest about it anymore.

“I’m sorry for keeping things from you,” I feel like I need to properly apologise.

“We’re scared, love,” Erik sighs. “How can we protect you in your dreams?”

“It’s something I have to do on my own,” I say, trying to sound determined, but I realise that my wings are shaking.

We stay in Gotrid's feathery embrace for a long while until I calm down. I wonder if it’s the Divementis thing to rest in the partner’s mind or exclusively mine. How does it work when they can’t feel each other’s emotions? What do they share? I’m so glad to be an empath on top of being a telepath. It was always a burden for me, but not anymore.

Despite the late hour, we don’t feel like going back to sleep. Our cuddling gradually transforms into making love and when we eventually fall asleep, I keep all of us connected.


“Okay, so here’s the strangest thing ever,” Erik says when he wakes up in the morning.

“What thing?” I yawn and I’m happy to find out that my headache is gone entirely. Gotrid is also slowly waking up, we’re perfectly synchronised.

“I think I was experiencing your dream, hon,” he says and caresses my hair.

“Oh?” I’m wide awake all of a sudden. “What did you see?”

“Not only see,” he says. “I could feel what it’s like to have wings and fly. Do you always fly in your dreams?”

“Yeah, mostly,” I nod.

“Me too,” Gotrid seconds. “What else should a Celestial dream about?”

“I don’t know, normal stuff,” Erik shrugs. “Dreams rarely make sense.”

“Well, I do sometimes dream about nonsense, but I always have wings in them,” I shrug. “You were lucky to see one of my carefree dreams. Did you like it?”

“I loved it,” he smiles. “As I said already, if I played Draconia Online, I would definitely pick a Celestial.”

I want to ask if he regrets that he didn’t play Draconia Online, but I know it’s a sore topic. Erik isn’t a gamer, he considers video games to be a waste of time or a quirky hobby at best. Still, it will probably never stop bothering me—does he regret that he didn’t transform into a Draconian?

I never really felt a real regret from him, but I do sometimes sense a strange undertone in his subconscious every time he can’t accompany me because he doesn’t have wings and can’t do magic. He doesn’t feel inferior being human, but, at the same time, he’s painfully aware of his limitations.

“It was a really interesting feeling,” Erik continues and stretches his hand to rub his back. “The experience was dreamy, but I could vividly feel having wings. I’ve always wondered what that feels like.”

“I can let you share my dreams more often,” I propose.

“That would be nice,” he nods and gets more serious. “Since you’re mostly recovered already, I’m afraid you will have a lot of explaining to do today, love.”

“I guess,” I lower my head.

I’m not looking forward to it at all. My partners might have forgiven me after our making love, but the same can’t be said about Liana and the rest of the Celestials. Their priority is to protect their embodiment of magic and I was kind of sabotaging that for days. Now that everyone in the mansion is awake, I can feel their discontent.

I eat breakfast but only because my partners force me. My stomach is tight, I’m nervous about facing my subjects. I wasn’t exactly lying to them, but I was hiding important facts. No wonder they are angry with me. I would also be angry if I found out that, for instance, Liana was hiding something super important from me.

Dalia, my new Japanese maid, dresses me into a beautiful robe with embroidered petals, which I got as a gift from the Japanese, and styles my hair with a traditional hairpin. My attire suddenly got a Japanese vibe and I really like it.

But then I realise that I’m not actually Japanese. I was born here, but only because my father chose this country to best suit the Divementis in their disguise. There’s nothing Japanese in me just as there’s nothing human in me.

“Love,” Gotrid takes my hand. “You just started to feel sad for some reason.”

“Because all of this,” I touch my robe, “reminds me that I’m not actually Japanese. I never was.”

“You were born here,” Erik adjusts his tie and also hurries to take my hand. “It’s okay to feel that this is your homeland.”

I nod. Half-alien or not, I was born in Japan.

Noage appears, coming to check my condition. He’s frowning when he attaches his rooty tentacles to my forearm.

“The worst is behind you, Your Majesty, but you’re still not fully recovered,” he says, more to my caretakers than me. “I can’t allow you to fly for at least two more days and while you can go talk to your subjects, work is out of the question and you need to take a nap immediately after the audience.”

I want to prove him otherwise, but I get up too quickly, my head spins and I wobble. Erik catches me readily, anticipating it.

“You’re just going to explain yourself to the Celestial Council, not work,” he sets the record straight. “You need to give them some answers and then you go back to bed.”

“How angry are they with me?” I’m almost afraid to ask. I can feel the overall mood in the mansion and it’s not good at all.

“Furious,” Gotrid offers me his support, “especially after you told Liana that you could have died during the monster attack.”

“Figures,” I sigh. “Well, let’s go then. I’m prepared for scolding.”

The guards lock to me closely the moment I leave our apartment. They are also angry with me for hiding the truth and putting myself in danger, but they soften up once they see me leaning onto my partners.

“Your Majesty, we wouldn’t insist you talk with the Council today if you still don’t feel okay,” Sareash says, bowing to me.

“The pain is gone, I’m just feeling a bit weak, that’s all,” I assure her. “I owe you answers and an apology.”

Sareash chews her lip, only partly convinced, and orders the guards to walk slowly. It seems everyone was counting on Noage to heal me quickly, but poor Noage couldn’t do much except for providing me with nutrients. My Divementis brain resists any external intervention and heals at its own pace.

The throne room is unnaturally quiet when I enter. My weakened state softens the Celestials to a certain extent, but not entirely. Liana must have given our inner government the gist of what happened, but I still have a lot of explaining to do.

First and foremost, I went against the Celestial law that concerns my protection. I put myself in danger and that’s something Celestials won’t tolerate. Something tells me I won’t be forgiven easily this time. It’s almost as if it suddenly doesn’t matter that I’m the Emperor. Right now, I’m their precious embodiment of magic that was hiding the truth and got seriously hurt. They have every right to scold me.

“Your Majesty,” Liana is standing in front of the throne.

She patiently waits for me to get seated and bows as the protocol dictates, but she straightens her back right away. I can tell from her strict expression that she’s deeply disappointed. I twitch nervously in my seat. I deserve their anger and I do plead guilty.

“I’ve told the Council what happened, but that was just a shortened version. We demand a lengthy explanation, Your Majesty. Don’t omit any details, please,” she says resolutely.

I take a deep breath and tell them everything. There’s no use hiding anything from them anymore and I wish to come clean. It didn’t feel good hiding the truth from them anyway.

I tell them about my father approaching me in my dreams, his torturous training methods and all the information I’ve learnt so far. Then I tell them everything about my encounter with that monstrous consciousness from the Draconia dimension, the Divementis equivalent of Wikipedia and that I can apparently speak an alien language like a native.

There’s a period of silence after I finish my long speech which gives me a little breather to sip a cup of coffee. I felt quite okay after the good night’s sleep and making love with my partners, but just this much managed to exhaust me again. Having suffered a concussion is no joke. Ignoring the protocol, Erik moves right next to me and hugs me.

“Your Excellency, don’t be too harsh on His Majesty,” Gotrid stands up to my defence when nobody’s saying anything, still digesting what they’ve just learnt.

“We do realise that His Majesty did it for us, Gotrid,” Liana gives me a stern look. “That’s why it pains us twice as much. What’s worse, he let himself be tortured by his father.”

“I didn’t let myself be tortured, I had to learn how to oppose him,” I object. “Also, and I hate to give him credit for that, it’s only thanks to his harsh training methods that I was able to protect myself against that monstrous consciousness and get away only with a concussion.”

“Li, you can’t blame him for putting himself in danger during that monster attack,” Erik states matter-of-factly. “Yes, our Emperor got hurt, but he didn’t expose himself to danger on purpose. Nobody could have anticipated that there would be some kind of telepathic monster waiting on the other side.”

“You’re right, we won’t blame His Majesty for that,” Liana admits. “Still, His Majesty got seriously hurt and caused a global panic. We can’t let that happen ever again.”

“Your Majesty, it pains us that you didn’t feel like you could confide to us,” Gavreel stands up and also approaches the throne.

“And I’m sorry for that, I really am,” I apologise profoundly, sending out my regret telepathically to convince them.

I see Liana pursing her lips. Here it is, my scolding. She starts loudly expressing everyone’s frustrations with me and there’s no space for any excuses on my part. She stays extremely polite, but otherwise, she’s not holding anything back. All her points are valid so I can only take it head on and repent the best I can.

“I think His Majesty gets it, Viceroy,” Gotrid waves his hands when Liana pauses to catch her breath.

I still fortify myself against another salve, but Luviael suddenly storms into the throne room, saving me from another round of scolding.

“The Japanese government wishes to speak with His Majesty,” she announces. “They finally reached an agreement and are asking to see our Emperor in the afternoon.”

So much for no work today.