The brainwashing was almost complete. A most rigorous process, the last few months had passed by quickly as he worked. He'd grown very good at working with Devil's Spit, and like he thought, the mind-warping properties of the substance could be controlled.

The Royal Family of Discarthia was harboring a dark secret, a secret that The Locust had become aware of. King Hiram Blackburn's reign had caused the appearance of Devil's Spit, a byproduct of the supernatural magical capabilities of the monarch themselves.

Little did everyone know that without the monarch on the throne, the land would suffer and die. The land needed the King, the conduit for magical energy that maintained it within reality.

The Locust inspected his chosen three. The memory gaps might be problematic, but he was prepared to utilize his spells to fill the lost time with creations suited to his purpose. Levi Bosner had been easy to capture and break, given his depression. Albert Nash was delivered by his father, a hateful and spiteful man. He had resisted, forcing The Locust to accept that Albert would likely notice a gap in his memories. But it wouldn't matter. Lucretia's parents had been harder to fool, but they had jumped at the chance for their strong-willed daughter to be 'civilized'.

Albert and Levi would personally see to the assassination and then die or disappear. Lucretia would return to her parents, to remain close to Solomon Varas who likely knew too much.

The King and his legitimate issue would perish. Only the illegitimate daughter would remain, and she would be powerless to stop the succession crisis that followed. The Locust's ascendency to lichdom would be complete, the world unaware that Hiram Blackburn had set in motions the event that would doom his family, his Kingdom, and possibly the world.

For King Hiram Blackburn intended to become The Locust.

The throes of childbirth claimed Eleanor from his life forever. His advisers refused to give him the time to mourn, speaking of political capital and the need to remarry, soon. She was dead, dead giving him a child that could never fill the anger and cold emptiness gnawing at his bones and making goosebumps spread across his arms.

It had taken him almost sixteen years to learn the necessary steps to harness his magic. He was already aware that upon taking the throne that he had caused deposits of Devil's Spit to appear across the entire world- focusing his latent magic into other directions took years of effort.

Finding the knowledge necessary took all the late hours of the night that he would normally be sleeping, but he did it. The potion killed any who took is and then forced them into an existence of undeath as a lich.

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