Chapter 222: Grumbles
Seeing Dongahaha spit out blood and collapse, the scene turned noisy for a moment but Pope-sama addressed everyone.
“Calm down. As long as Sage Luciel is here, nobody will die. I’ll first erase his job. Regarding the removal of memories, it will be done after we have interrogated him for information on the demon race and of the other countries.”
After Pope-sama announced that, she repeatedly touched the foreheads of the demonized Knights that perpetrated the crimes this time and muttered something.
“With this, your jobs have disappeared. Repent for causing chaos in the Church with the little remaining time you have. And bear a grudge against me for causing you all to take such actions.”
Pope-sama once again bowed her head before she slowly raised her head and started talking about the future.
“I am responsible for the series of events that transpired this time. Originally, it would be natural for me to step down from the seat of Pope.”
The sudden announcement caused everyone to stiffen.
I was also slightly shaken by that announcement.
“However, I feel that it is irresponsible if I just leave the Church in its present state to somebody. That’s why I will set up an opportunity to interview everyone present here.”
She suddenly announced a drastic claim, saying that she will interview the about 700 personnel inside the Church.
If Catherine-san was here, she would probably make noise again …
Since it was already pretty tough when I brought Pope-sama out.
I shuddered to think how it would have gone if Rosa-san wasn’t around.
Nevertheless, this development where Pope-sama decides on matters might be a good direction.
Just now, I was shocked when the Pope spoke of stepping down and I intended to board the flying ship and leave the Holy Capital on the off chance that she vacates the Pope seat to me.
I listened to Pope-sama’s announcement.
“I wish to hear everyone’s thoughts during the interview. What you want to do, what you want to achieve in the Church, what you want to see, anything is fine. Of course, I cannot say that I will be able to fulfill everything. However, I wish to start by first hearing everyone’s opinion and make the Church agreeable to everyone. Please lend me your wisdom and power.”
I don’t know for sure if that sincere appeal reached the hearts of everyone.
However, the Knights all knelt down and bowed with their hands to their chest.
The ones who weren’t Knights took a praying posture with their hands clasped together.
“Luciel-sama, could I have a little of your time?”
I imagined that signaled the end of the verdict by Pope-sama when Kefin approached my side carrying a few parchments.
Now that I think about it, since Garba-san appeared, it naturally meant that Kefin had returned too.
“What are those in your hands?”
“Information on what you asked us to investigate. Well, the majority of them ended up being unnecessary …”
I asked them to find information that could prove the validity of the content spoken between Pope-sama and Dongahaha but he wasn’t making himself clear.
“What do you mean?”
I didn’t understand without him making it clear so I asked him again and got a reply that was beyond my expectations.
“It seems like that man actually intended to die from the beginning. This is his will.”
I raised a slight voice of surprise which caused some reaction from the people around us but it didn’t turn into a commotion.
While judging that it would be best to put a close to this incident since Pope-sama had finished her address, I looked over the will.
I felt that it was inevitable that Pope-sama, having just begun to face the future, would be severely damaged mentally after she reads it.
“Since you could tell that it’s a will, it means that you read it?”
“Yes. In addition, at the same place, the documents pertaining to demonization and the risks to summoning were written in detail. There were also documents regarding malpractices.”
… If he placed that much importance in the Church, there should have been other ways of doing it.
Did Catherine-san catch onto something when she was in the Executives Department? Or is the information with Garba-san? My mind was a mess.
” … All right. Since the judgment has been passed, there are plenty of things we have to investigate so we can probably tell Pope-sama this later. Can I ask you to guide me there once this is over?”
“Yes, of course. Ah, also, there was a necklace with jewels emitting faint light that neither I nor Garba-sama could touch.”
After I arranged the information in my head, Kefin once again brought up new information on a mysterious necklace.
… It sounds somewhat suspicious but I must investigate it.
If possible, I would have preferred if Dongahaha spoke about the important details before collapsing …
” … Okay. We’ll go there again before we depart from the Church.”
Kefin passed me the information and left.
I felt that the will I received would connect everything but for the sake of first bringing the incident to a close, I spoke to everyone.
“In my opinion, this incident occurred because the Church has been surrounded by various speculations that bred confusion. On my end, after becoming the S-rank Healer, I have completely not interacted with a large majority of the people here. That’s why you all believed the rumors. I have thought before that I should maybe take a little time to do so.”
I felt that it was a good time to objectively reveal more about myself so I talked a little regarding myself.
“However, I am not as free as everyone thinks, I live a life that borders death.”
As I spoke, various memories resurfaced.
“I had toiled for two whole years within the labyrinth inside this Church and furthermore, I was forced to spend the last half of year inside the labyrinth without being able to exit. After moving to Ienith, I received various interference including assassination from the many races, but after I defeated the Red Dragon, and conquered the labyrinth, it somehow finally settled down. Next, I then encountered the demon race and ended up fighting with them multiple times. To be honest, I didn’t think that trying to live was so agonizing.”
Midway through everyone withdrew slightly but I ignored it and continued.
“I received a curse during my fight with the demon race and became unable to utilize Holy Attribute magic for a time when rumors filled with malice were scattered and I received hostility from everyone here. I apologize for not being able to approach you all.”
I grinned but everyone tried their best to not match my gaze and looked down.
“My dream is to have a person to love and a family, let the years go by like that and spend a peaceful life. That’s why I look forward to the people amongst you all that will replace me.”
“Luciel, we understand so you can stop now. Won’t that speech make people not want to aim for the top instead.”
I was taken aback when Pope-sama said that.
Looks like I had unknowingly accumulated quite some stress.
“Eh? Ah, sorry. It ended up becoming my outlet to complain halfway through. However, I believe everyone can do the things that I have done. I have faith that your passion can create a new Church (so I leave the follow up to you all).”
“Luciel, after this …”
“Later there would likely first be a meeting between the people responsible for the various sections but since the trial is over, please return to your personal room.”
“All right. I leave Dongahaha to you.”
“Just for this time, it can’t be helped.”
Since there wasn’t anyone to take the lead this time …
Like that, Pope-sama headed back to her room together with Rosa-san and Estia.
After seeing them off, I spoke to Lumina-san in order to send the demonized knights to the prison in the Church.
“Lumina-san, sorry but could I leave it to you to send these people to the jail?”
“Understood … Luciel-kun, could I have some of your time after this?”
“I’ll be heading to the Executives Department room after this but I should have time after that is done?”
“Then, after I place them in jail, I will wait in this training ground. Please come here after you are done with your tasks.”
“All right. Then, I’ll leave them with you.”
After that, Lumina-san gave out orders to the Valkyrie Paladin Corps and they brought the demonized knights apart from Dongahaha to the underground jail.
Then, for the remaining Dongahaha, I first applied Extra Heal, Recover and Dispel before deciding to keep him in the Hermit’s Coffin for now. We finally reached the end and I addressed Shisho and Lionel.
“Sorry for dragging you into this, Shisho, Lionel. Now then, I don’t mind if you go play with the people from the Knight Corps. Everyone from the Knight Corps, please try having some combat training with my martial arts master and my retinue. Please experience with your body what kind of environment I fight in every day. Well then, I leave it to you all.”
“Ou. Leave it to me.”
“I don’t mind if you take your time to investigate.”
“All right. Cathy and others, please follow up after Shisho and Lionel.”
Thus, I pushed the two combat maniacs onto the Knight Corps and moved to the Executives Department room together with Kefin.
Thank you for reading.