Blaming the late Glemos would have just reinforced the hate toward Emperor Beasts and the citizens of Ne'sra would have lived in fear of another attack.
"Great Mage Verhen." Solus mumbled in reply.
"I beg your pardon?" The Captain asked.
"That's Great Mage Verhen for you, not Lady Verhen." Solus snarled. "Also, I don't have to explain anything to you. We are innocent until proven otherwise. Your words sound like the pathetic attempt of an incompetent man to rationalize his failure to protect the city."
"How dare-" A flare of Solus' eyes had the entire detail fall onto their knees with their hands on the ground.
The yellow streak in her hair lit up slightly as the flight spells of the mages failed them, making them crash on the ground with the grace of bricks. The mages groaned in pain, the lucky ones had broken their ribs and legs but could still use their hands to heal themselves.
Those who had broken fingers and arms were now no better than regular people.
"In case you have forgotten, the three of us have just stopped a monster horde that would have wiped this city off the maps. If they failed to beat us, by what leap of logic do you think you have a better chance were we the menace you accuse us to be?"
Another wave of Solus' hand had the face of Neforce plunge deep into the mud until he started to drown. He emitted terrified gurgles that Solus amplified with air magic for everyone to hear.
Then, she spread her killing intent farther and the bystanders fell on all fours as well.
"You are not banishing us. We are leaving because I'm disgusted by you all. I'll report everything to the Crown and inform them that in case another horde arrives, Ne'sra won't receive any help from House Verhen."
A snap of her fingers Warped them back to the city branch of the Association, yet it would take a few minutes before the mana Solus had left faded away and people could finally stand up.
"Verhen Household for three, please." Tista said with a pained groan.
"Are you sure?" The clerk looked at her bloodstained back with a worried expression. "Great Mage Verhen, you are clearly hurt and the White Griffon is the only place where a wound that not even you can treat can be healed."
He was a man barely older than Tista and his words held no fear nor contempt. He had witnessed the battle but the only thing that mattered to him was the deep green of her robe.
"Thank you for your kindness, but I think my brother will do." Tista nodded, giving him a thin smile.
"Supreme Magus Verhen is there?" The young mage looked at the dimensional coordinates he had just inputted as if they were the map for a lost treasure. "Sorry for wasting your time and please, bring him my regards."
Tista chuckled and instead of pointing out that they had no idea who he was, she just read the name Vamfil on the nametag on his breast pocket.
"Will do." She walked first through the Gate, the clerk too busy handing Solus a piece of paper to bother checking their ID.
"Is this a secret message that requires to be imprinted to reveal its content?" Solus turned the paper over, but both sides were blank so she assumed it worked like the academy's grade report cards.
"No, it's just paper." Vamfil replied. "I was hoping for your autograph."
Solus' frown turned into a warm smile as she wrote her name in a flowery calligraphy.
"Thank the gods not everyone is an asshole here. Keep up the good work." Nyka entered last, discovering that Lith was already on the other side and that Solus was nowhere to be seen.
"What the heck happened? Weren't you girls supposed to be on a vacation?" Lith asked while studying Tista's condition.
"I guess that bad luck runs in our family, little brother." Tista tried to laugh but Lith's most delicate touch sent pangs through her wounded wings.
"Where's Solus?" Nyka asked.
"She's gone to the geyser for a quick recharge." Lith replied.
After spending more and more time away from him, Lith had given Solus the stone ring that he usually carried on his finger. Without it, the moment that Solus' human body ran out of energy or was about to be destroyed, she would have had no place where to return.
If that happened, she might have lost her human body for years and dealt great damage to the tower. As long as the tower had a physical form, the ring was just a symbol of their bond.
When the tower wasn't over a mana geyser, however, the ring acted as a vessel for both the tower and Solus.
After she returned, they used a mind link in turn to share their side of the battle and put together the various pieces of the puzzle.
"The only thing we are sure is that even from the grave Glemos is still causing trouble." Solus said.
"Who's Glemos?" Nyka and Dawn asked in unison.
"It's a long story." Lith did his best to hasten the regrowth of Tista's feathers, but nothing worked. "Dammit. You'd better stay here and rest. If the situation is unchanged after a good night's sleep, we'll have to ask Grandma's help."
Lith was worried for Tista and himself. His feathered wings had never been wounded before and a few of his plumes held the souls of his Demons.
'What if once they are plucked, the Void Sigils are lost as well? What about the souls they contain?' He pondered while Solus used a mind link to bring Nyka up to speed.
"Should we warn the Council?" Tista needed help to both reach a chair and eat the food that Lith took out of his pocket dimension.
"Yes and no. This is a matter for the Council and the Royals. There's no telling if more monster hordes are appearing somewhere else as we speak or if they are about to. Yet before contacting either of them, I'm calling Faluel." Lith replied.
"Glemos was Morok's father. Maybe he and Ajatar have a clue about what's happening."
"Lith, what a pleasant surprise." One of the seven heads of the Hydra answered her amulet while the other six kept working on a different project each. "Having some peace after months of trouble is really nice.
"Also, fatherhood agrees with you. I can't believe that you are finally getting used to calling people just to talk instead of just when you need something from them."
"About that…" While Lith shared with her the story of the attack on Ne'sra, he also asked Solus to take a mental note and remind him to make the courtesy calls he kept forgetting about.
'Copy that. I'll leave sticky notes on the walls of your room. It should be enough to keep your Lich-like memory in check during my absence.' Hearing her voice answering his thoughts instead of silence made him smile.
The idea that she would soon leave again wiped it off his face just as quickly.
"I take that back." Faluel's tone went from chip to a grumble.