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Chapter 16 Summary

That night, a frantic Prince Kai dashes through the halls of the palace. He arrives too late at the quarters where his father has been quarantined. The emperor is already dead. In his grief, Kai blames himself for not being by the emperor's side at the final moment.

Kai wants to be alone to grieve, but Torin says that they need to call a press conference and announce the emperor’s death to the country. Hearing this, Kai realizes that he has not only lost a father; he has also gained an enormous responsibility. Now that the emperor is dead, Kai is the sole leader of a whole country.

This realization is reinforced moments later when Queen Levana calls. Neither Kai nor Torin is sure how she knows about the emperor’s death so soon, but they suspect that someone from the Lunar court is spying on them. In spite of the circumstances, Kai knows he must accept the call.

Queen Levana appears on Kai’s screen wearing a whitish veil over her face. She has always claimed that Earthens are not worthy of seeing her beauty, but Kai has heard that the queen is unable to manipulate other people’s brainwaves via camera. She needs to use her manipulative powers to make herself seem beautiful, and she cannot abide the idea of anyone seeing her as she really is.

Nervously, Kai greets Queen Levana, who offers brief and insincere condolences on the death of his father. Then she announces that she intends to come to Earth tomorrow to speak with him about a possible peace treaty. She says that he need not interrupt his mourning to prepare the palace for her arrival; Sybil Mira will take care of everything.

Throughout this call, Queen Levana speaks without pause. Kai has no time to respond. As soon as she finishes speaking, she hangs up on him.

Kai...

(The entire section is 484 words.)