Book 4: Chapter Prologue: The Divine Sword that has Lost its Owner
Lesus stopped in his tracks and turned his head. Behind him stood someone whose skin-tight black leotard made it practically impossible for anyone to not recognize him. In the entire Holy Temple, only the Hell Knight would have such a unique way of dressing. However, the person who should have been with Roland Hell was currently not with him.
Lesus wrinkled his brow. He asked, “Knight-Captain Hell, weren’t you supposed to be following after Knight-Captain Sun?”
At these words, a look of shame immediately spread over Roland’s face.
“You’ve lost his trail again?”
Lesus couldn’t help feeling a little amused and mirthful. It seemed that ever since he had assigned Knight-Captain Hell to tail Sun, he had yet to see them walk alongside each other even once. But still, after a moment of thought, he couldn’t find it in his heart to blame Hell, because even he wasn’t certain he wouldn’t be shaken off whenever Sun intended to run away.
“Forget it. You don’t have to follow him anymore.” He shook his head, having finally thought things through. He sighed, “I should have realized long before. It’s not like we can have someone follow Sun forever.”
Having heard this, Roland couldn’t help but worry instead. “But Sun can no longer see with his eyes… If he were to meet with danger, what would we do then?”
“If he can even throw you off, I don’t think there’s any problem.”
“I suppose that’s true.” Roland couldn’t help but acknowledge this fact, but afterward, he sighed, “I just can’t understand why Sun can escape from my pursuit. His strength has never been that great…”
Lesus smiled faintly as he spoke, “If that’s what you actually think, then I’m afraid you are greatly looking down on our Knight-Captain Sun.”
“But isn’t his swordsmanship terrible?” Roland asked, slightly puzzled.
“Sun’s swordsmanship is indeed terrible,” Lesus had no choice but to admit.
As a matter of fact, speaking of his swordsmanship in this way was quite courteous already. To have been taught by “the Strongest Sun Knight in History” for eight years, yet have his skill with the sword remain at a standard too tragic to even look at, the word “terrible” would certainly not be enough to fully express this.
“Although it is true that Sun’s swordsmanship is terrible,” Lesus said insipidly, “if you were to ask me who in this world I wish least to go against, my answer would definitely be Knight-Captain Sun.”
Even more confused, Roland said hesitantly, “But Grisia, he’s…”
Lesus and Roland were both startled. It didn’t matter to the latter, but the former’s face promptly darkened and switched to a frown, displaying the Judgment Knight’s renowned “I’m in a bad mood even when no one is causing me trouble” expression.
However, the person who had come was a member of the Judgment Knight Platoon. This made Lesus frown not only on the surface, but also on the inside.
Judgment knew the members of his platoon all too well. Their pattern of behavior greatly resembled his own: always calm, disciplined, and strict. Now, a member of his platoon was actually running toward him frantically—obviously, something had gone wrong.
The Judgment Knight Platoon member gasped for air twice. Afterward, he immediately saluted, “Captain Judgment, Knight-Captain Hell.”
“What is the matter?” Lesus asked with his brows furrowed.
“There was a huge explosion nearby due to causes unknown. No deaths or injuries were reported, but the clerics said that a very strong dark element has aggregated there. It’s possible that a necromancer cast a spell there.”
Upon hearing this, Lesus’ expression darkened. Just which necromancer actually had the guts to do such a thing in Leaf Bud City, the region under the jurisdiction of the God of Light?
Whoever he is, it is completely unforgivable that he is causing disturbances in my city!
Lesus’ expression darkened further as he gave orders in a low voice, “Assemble all members of the Judgment Knight Platoon. Hell, you’re coming along as well.”
When he arrived at the scene, Lesus immediately understood why his platoon member had been so distressed.
To think that the explosion actually left a hole in the ground about ten meters in diameter…
Not to mention the rubble from toppled buildings nearby, the scorched floor, and the bits of rocks scattered about the entire area… Thankfully, this area is an old execution ground so few people come here. If the explosion had happened in the bustling city plaza, the results would be simply unthinkable.
“Judgment Knight, Hell Knight…”
The clerics at the scene were about to salute, but Lesus promptly raised his hand to stop them. Straightaway, he ordered, “Report the current situation.”
The clerics revealed worried expressions as they started their reports. “Other than discovering the presence of the dark element, the area also seems to have a great amount of the holy element. We fear that someone from the Church might have gotten into a battle with a necromancer, so we are currently searching the vicinity for…for…”
Before they had even finished their sentence, Lesus had already grasped the situation. By the look of things, the battle was likely to have been very intense. If that someone from the Church of the God of Light had won, then that person would have long since reported back to the Church. Even if his injuries were so severe that he couldn’t walk back to the Church and fainted halfway, he should have at least been found by one of the patrolling holy knights or royal knights.
However, so far, no one has heard of any such news.
So now the only possibility left is that that person was either taken away by the necromancer or is already dead. If so, it’s very likely that he’s buried underneath these collapsed buildings.
Lesus frowned as he examined the surrounding collapsed buildings. Although the number of buildings here were not as great as in the inner city, there were still about ten buildings. They would probably not be able to finish cleaning up the mess in a short amount of time. This also made him hesitant on what to do. Should I lead my men to search for the necromancer first, or do I continue waiting here, to check if the person being excavated is still alive and ask him for the truth instead?
At this moment, Roland walked over to Lesus. He pointed beneath the collapsed buildings further in the distance and said, “Knight-Captain Judgment, there is a strong presence of holy element in that area.”
Hearing these words, Lesus creased his brow. Even if he’s a holy knight or a cleric, after death, the dark element would still corrode him. But since Hell said that he sensed holy element there… Could that person still be alive?
He immediately gave orders to everyone in the search party. “Go to the area pointed out by Knight-Captain Hell at once. Be careful, there may be a person beneath there, and he may still be alive!”
Every holy knight immediately started moving rocks aside. With the ample strength of the knights and their quick excavation speed, it did not take long for them to clean out more than half of the collapsed buildings. There were already knights carefully using shovels to dig into the ground as well.
Roland was surprised for a moment. He turned his head to see a row of knights wearing the vermilion uniform of the royal knights. The one at the very front was the most familiar. That one was Elijah, who often asked Roland to spar with him.
Elijah commanded the royal knights to stop. He walked forward to Roland by himself. While looking at the huge hole in the ground in front of him, he frowned as he asked Roland, “What on earth happened here?”
Roland shook his head. He explained, “We are also unsure of what exactly happened, but what we do know is that there is a large amount of dark element and holy element congregated in the area.”
As Elijah wrinkled his brow, pondering over what Roland had said, Judgment Knight Lesus, who happened to be beside them, began to speak. “Knight Elijah, could you perhaps request for your men to help dig as well? We suspect that there is either a cleric or a holy knight underneath the buildings and that he is likely to still be alive.”
Elijah was surprised for a moment, but he immediately replied in agreement, “Of course.”
He turned around, gesturing for the knights under his command to come forward and help out.
Lesus wrinkled his brow while watching the excavation. Come to think of it, I don’t seem to be able to help out here for now. Maybe I should go back to search for the whereabouts of the necromancer if he’s still nearby… But suddenly it came to him that finding the necromancer did not fall under the duties he was responsible for.
He turned around and asked his vice-captain, “Did anyone send a notification to Knight-Captain Sun?”
His vice-captain immediately replied, “Captain, I cannot locate Knight-Captain Sun, but I have already notified Vice-Captain Adair of the Sun Knight Platoon. He said that he would immediately arrange for the Sun Knight Platoon to split up and search the city. If there is any unusual gathering of the dark element, he will immediately bring people there to investigate.”
Upon hearing this, Lesus nodded his head. It’s good as long as Adair was notified. But where has Sun run off to again?
“Oh right, hasn’t Knight-Captain Sun come?” Elijah opened his mouth and asked.
“Elijah, by any chance did you see Sun on your way here?” Roland turned and asked as well.
Their eyes met, and they laughed heartily before shaking their heads in unison.
Upon witnessing this, Judgment smiled inwardly as well.
It seems that it’s always been like this, ever since long ago. Despite his terrible swordsmanship, Grisia is somehow always acquainted with people who are greatly skilled with the sword… No! It’s not just those who are master swordsmen. Perhaps he has already become acquainted with every single strong person in Leaf Bud City?
Of course, we have the Twelve Holy Knights of the Church of the God of Light, and one of them is even a death lord. Then we have the princess’ beloved royal knight lover, and even the proclaimed ‘the Strongest Sun Knight in History’ who is revered by many, not to mention a necromancer who’s likely incredibly strong but whose name is not well known.
Also, other than knowing all of the strong people out there, is Grisia really as weak as the Hell Knight assumes he is?
After pondering up to this point, Lesus was truly a little flustered. Perhaps only the Pope, the former Sun Knight, and I know just how strong a person Grisia Sun actually is… No! Perhaps even I don’t truly understand his strength.
Lesus could not help but mutter, “Grisia, you always say that I’m like a tapeworm living in your stomach since you can never hide anything from me, but I’ve never really completely understood what you’re capable of… Or maybe it’d be better to say that even you don’t understand your true capabilities?”
Roland and Elijah seemed to have heard some of Lesus’ murmurs. The two of them turned to ask curiously, “What did…”
Hearing the shouts of the holy knights, the spirits of the three lifted immediately and they moved forward in unison. They soon saw many people crowding around the hole to behold what was inside. Yet, no injured person was being lifted out. The three of them had a very uniform reaction—a frown appeared on each of their faces at the same time.
Lesus was the first one to lower his tone as he spoke ominously, “What are you clerics doing? Shouldn’t you be quicker in helping that person?”
The clerics received a huge fright from this. After seeing Judgment Knight’s cold expression, their faces paled even more. They explained frantically, “It… It’s not a person!”
Upon hearing this, Lesus creased his brow once again. He simply walked forward to see for himself just what it was. Indeed, what was in the hole was not a person, but rather a sword that was just quietly lying amongst the dust. Given what it actually was, it really should not have to suffer such treatment.
“Why is the Divine Sun Sword here?”
Lesus recognized at one glance that it was the Divine Sun Sword lying at the bottom of the hole. This is Grisia’s most treasured possession… although he doesn’t use it too often.
He actually rarely brings his sword out of the Holy Temple, but when he does, it never leaves his side.
But right now, the Divine Sun Sword is here, yet its master is not present… Suddenly, Lesus noticed that the sword was stained with something… He immediately jumped into the hole and picked up the sword to see.
It really is a bloodstain!
His face changed almost immediately. He hurriedly shouted at the knights around the area, “Quickly! Continue digging! But be careful while doing so. Sun– Whoever’s underneath might still be alive!”
At this moment, Roland also jumped down. He knelt down to touch the ground with his hand; his eyes never left the Divine Sun Sword that Lesus was holding.
Following this, he stood up and spoke in a low voice to Lesus, “There isn’t any more holy element underneath here. I’m sure the holy element that I had felt before was from the Divine Sun Sword… C-Could it be that Grisia… he…”
Lesus adamantly interrupted Roland’s speech. He leaped back to the surface, allowing the holy knights to continue digging. At the same time, Roland followed suit.
In examination, Lesus circled the old execution ground that was in ruins. He then firmly proclaimed, “Impossible! Such a place… would definitely not be the place where Sun is buried!”
Grisia, just where the heck are you?