81 The Older Brother
Far away from Sand Pit in the town of Colten, the Rellen house was once again on pins and needles. The young master of the house, Markus Rellen had returned a few days prior and had been in a furious rage ever since. No less than seven servants had been brutally killed by him since then, their only crime was being in the wrong place and time when he snapped. Even now one could hear rage-filled howls echoing through the grand hallways of the house as Markus viciously attacked a stationary target in one of the training rooms. The servants waiting outside the room all had pale faces and sweat could be seen on their skin. None of them wanted to end up in Markus's sight when he was in this state.
The sound of Markus screaming through the halls was abruptly joined by another sound. A man followed by a woman came marching down the hallway towards the training room Markus was in. The servants lining the hall stiffened as the two newcomers walked past. They wanted no part in what was about to take place.
This man was someone who every servant present knew very well. He was Markus's older brother, Cornelius Rellen. This man was the leader of the Rellen house in all but name, and his ridged personality left no room for anything other than his iron will. He ruled his house and the city of Colten with a ruthless brutality that made him feared by those that knew him, and respected by those that did not.
Physically he was an impressive specimen, standing a half head taller than his brother with broad shoulders and perfectly combed golden hair. He wore a militant style dress uniform that was emblazoned with the Rellen house crest, giving him the look of a great leader. His eyes were blood red, evidence of his noble lineage, and they looked out onto the world with cold, calculating indifference. If you were unfortunate enough to look him in the eye you would feel your blood run cold.
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The brunette following him was beauty the likes of which you would never see outside of a noble house. She was dressed in a feminine military style uniform and skirt that clung to her body and was modeled after Cornelius's uniform. She followed him with a swaying walk and quiet composure that set the hearts of men aflame around her. Her skin was like smooth porcelain and her face like a doll with no imperfections to be seen. However, her dark eyes were empty, soulless, like a puppet under complete control. Only the gods knew what remained of the person behind those empty eyes.
Markus was still attacking the training dummy when Cornelius threw open the doors to the training area and strode inside. Markus furiously spun around to see who had dared enter without his permission. He froze when he saw who it was. Cornelius merely glanced at his brother, then surveyed the mess in the room before selecting one of the few intact chairs and sitting down. There was a moment of tense silence as Markus caught is breath as his brother waited with trained patience.
They did resemble each other as brothers, but Cornelius's features were more defined, and slightly more regal than Markus. That was also where the similarities ended. Anyone that knew the Rellen family knew that these two brothers had ever been at odds with one another. To control their house and take over the fortune their father had amassed in his years, the two of them had ever been attempting to drive each other down since they both could walk. Cornelius always seemed to have the upper hand in their contest though, and the younger Markus always chasing his brother's shadow.
After a moment, Cornelius spoke, "Brother... you have been busy of late... I hear you took out a Kreppelin and a company of our best soldiers, and came back empty handed..." Cornelius stopped and focused his eyes on his brother.
Cornelius had a soft voice, but there was something in his tone that made the very air in the room seem to solidify when he spoke. Markus felt his blood running cold when he heard those words, but this was nothing new to him. He simply clenched his jaw and looked away angrily, refusing to meet Cornelius's piercing eyes.
"How is it, that you go out after a single person with a quarter of our fleet, AND one of our strongest subordinates, and still come back with nothing?" Cornelius asked. He never raised his voice, but there was a sinister power in those words that seemed to grip Markus's throat.
"Not only that... you managed to get half on them killed." Cornelius narrowed his eyes dangerously as he finished.
Markus still remained silent, his fists clenched and trembling with rage as he remembered the disgrace of that fateful night. That exotically beautiful face he had seen was burned into his mind and had haunted his dreams, both waking and sleeping since then. She had been within his grasp! If only his men hadn't been so useless he would have had her! If only he had her, then maybe he would have been able to take his rightful place as the leader of the Rellen family instead of his insufferable brother!
Cornelius on the other hand was simply watching is little brother's reactions through narrowed eyes, analyzing every single movement he made.
"You will not leave the house grounds without my permission from this moment on. You have done enough damage as it is. Every noble house knows that our forces were out there hunting something valuable enough to mobilize a Kreppelin and an entire company of troops. They will not give us another opportunity."
Cornelius stood up and dusted off his uniform before walking towards the exit where he stopped again and said, "I will be taking care of this problem that you created, so don't get in the way again."
Markus jerked his head up when he heard that, glaring at his brother with barley contained rage. "She belongs to ME! I was the one that discovered her! She is MINE!" he roared out at Cornelius.
The other man didn't even look back as he opened the door to the training room. "Hmm so its a woman then..." Cornelius glanced at the woman that stood behind him showing no emotion. "I could use another subordinate to train... this one has been getting boring. You had your chance brother. You could have had a Harmonic Vessel all to yourself, but you fucked it up. Now you will have only what I allow you to have and nothing more."
As the door to the training room closed and Markus was alone again, he couldn't help but furiously grit his teeth and clench his fists. This was far from over!