Chapter 85 – The Black Gods & The White God
Does God exist? Does he exist in the heart of the believers? No, does he exist no matter what?
There have been various theories regarding God, but in the 17 years I lived in modern japan, God was nothing but an illusion to me.
At least, I didn’t believe that an existence called God that looked like a human watched over the whole world from the heavens above.
I am not against religion or anything but, it was a fact that no one on earth had seen a being that could cause miracles with just looking or touching.
But this different world was a true fantasy world that had its own rules and principles.
Yes, in this world [God] exists.
One of its proofs was the existence of [Divine Protection].
Simply speaking, God gave power to a man and the abilities gained by that man was called the [Divine Protection].
For example, having immense physical strength without using enhancement magic or being able to use magic that you have never learnt or practiced, etc.
I didn’t actually feel it but apparently my Black magic is a type of [Divine Protection].
Black magical energy was completely different from the primary magical energy that normally exists in this world and is a type of special energy that is brought about by God.
“In Kurono’s case, I think there is a gate in your soul that is connected to the [Black Gods] from where you pull the black magical energy.”
“Lily, this is the first I’m hearing of this…….”
“Eh, well I thought you already knew, or rather isn’t the source of your own magical energy something you’ll know somehow automatically?”
“……I don’t know.”
What the hell are the [Black Gods] anyway? When did I get connected to such a suspicious group of guys?
No, it must have been when I underwent the first experiment that helped me obtain magical energy.
That really did hurt like hell. I can understand if someone says my soul was involved in it.
“I didn’t think Kurono didn’t even know about Gods. But since you can use magic properly, does all these things about your magical energy even matter?”
“Well, I guess but……..[Black Gods], is it………….”
“That’s the generic term for all the gods that are spoken of in the whole Pandora continent. Even Irz village had a shrine dedicated towards a harvest god, right? All such gods together are known as the [Black Gods]. By the way our [Fairy Queen] is also one of them.”
“I see, so it’s like the Yaoyorozu no kamigami.” (T/N: All the deities in Shinto religion are referred to as such .)
The Gods are spread all over the continent and provide their [divine protection] to that area and are worshiped there.
It’s the same if the gods back in my world also gave such divine protection wherever they were enshrined. Well, this must be also a type of ‘magic’, I guess.
But in my case, it is only to the extent of providing magical energy and I am not directly connected to a god.
It’s conveniently called the [Divine Protection of the Black Gods].
Then if I also start worshipping a specific God, will I also gain some kind of super powers?[Divine Protection] isn’t something you could get easily just by praying apparently. Looks like the gods are also calculative, or should I say realistic minded.
“Now that Kurono-san has understood what Gods are, I’ll talk about the [Apostles].”(Fiona)
Right, I wanted to hear about the Apostles in the first place.
It seems I only vaguely understood the concept of gods in this different world so I was first told that.
“[Apostles] are beings that have transcended humans after specially receiving the [Divine Protection] of the [White God]. According to the Cross religion, the White God is the creator of all existence and the humans were created the last for the purpose of ruling over this world, or so they preach. ”
It seems in the Arc continent a God similar to the God in bible that created the god in 1 week exists.
Damn this really is completely suspicious all over.
“I don’t know whether he actually created the world or not but in the Arc continent he is the oldest and the most influential God.”
“And then the greedy [White God] wanted to increase his territory so he sent those damned humans to the Pandora continent controlled by the [Black Gods].”
“It’s as you say Lily-san. The campaign towards the Pandora continent was started due to an [Oracle] sent by the White God.”
The Crusaders in my original world were ones that took military action in the name of reclaiming their holy grounds and whatnot but to think that here, God actually clearly gave the order himself.
“The [White God] desired this land, thus we, the [Crusaders, have come to this land to offer it to him.”
That was what Sariel had said to me at Daedalus but it turned to be a literally true.
“Expanding the land under control, what exactly are they going to do?”
“The Cross religion will build up churches that only worship the [White God] and will exterminate all other religions and its worshippers. As a result, all types of culture and religion that already existed here would be destroyed, and disappear probably.”
Basically, same as what happened in my world.
Sariel did say [convert] but the image I had in my mind back then was actually correct.
It would have been fine if it ended with just converting but considering what happened at Irz, those bastards are truly bent on completely exterminating any race other than the humans.
They won’t even accept surrender. These guys really are demons.
“I’ll come back to the topic, how many Apostles are there?”(kurono)
“There will always be 12 total.”(Fiona)
“The number is always fixed?”
“Yes, though it might take some time till a new one is found in case the number falls.”
As expected, the favourites of God aren’t 100 or 1000 people. At least they won’t send an army full of Apostles so that’s a relief.
“If you end up facing them, it’ll only be one at a time. Probably, the highest chance would be the supreme commander [7th Apostle Sariel], I think.”(Fiona)
“……..we already fought.”(kurono)
“Yeah, that’s not something you can forget.”(Lily)
“Oh my, how did that happen?”(Fiona)
Looks like even Fiona-san is surprised as she looks at me with a clearly surprised expression.
“When we went to scout Daedalus, I happened to meet her on the castle walls. Since she called herself the supreme commander, I tried to assassinate her there and then but instead got beaten myself.”
“That’s……..you did well even surviving that.”(Fiona)
Are those eyes looking at me with pity for doing a stupid thing Fiona-san?
“Yeah, if Lily didn’t help, I would have definitely died there.”
“No such thing, that woman let us go intentionally.”(lily)
I was unconscious till I woke up at Riol pass, so I don’t know how exactly Lily saved me from Sariel.
Although she did say that it was okay to run away, but to have let us go even after I tried to kill her, just what the hell is that Sariel thinking? Did she think of me as trash that was not even worth killing?
“The Apostles are the strongest existence in the church. There is no one, at least in the Arc continent, that could face them one-on-one. You were lucky to have gotten away.”(Fiona)
“She must have let me go on a whim, but, alright, I’ll make her regret that decision. You said one-on-one, but what about against large number of people? Do they have any weaknesses? Can they even be killed?”
That would be the main problem. If they turn out to be immortal due to the power of god, then it would be all useless.
I did injure her right arm with the [bone needle of Basilisk] so I think that’s not the case but still……
Could it be they would revive even after killed through a miracle of God?
“They can be killed. No matter how strong the divine protection they have, the body is still human. If you cut off their heads, pierce their heart, or cause them to bleed too much; if you can deal such a fatal blow, they will definitely die.”(Fiona)
I guess a perfect [immortal] body is impossible even in a world of magic.
They won’t revive either so that’s a relief.
“Just how Kurono-san draws out black magical energy from the gods, the apostles use white magic drawn out from the gate in their souls that is connected to the [White God]. Just, the amount they can use is enormous. If you ask how much then, let’s see, can Kurono-san use black magic infinitely?”
“No way, even I have a limit.”
I ran out of magical energy a lot of times during those experiments after all.
Recently, I even fell unconscious during the evolution of the cursed hatchet against that Priest.
“Apostle can never experience the phenomenon known amongst magicians as [running out of magic]. No matter how many magics they use, their energy is instantly replenished. Of course, the amount provided by the [White God] is infinite. They will never run out of magical energy.”
But that infinite magical energy was still just one part of their divine protection. I was told this terrifying truth.
“Then how do you kill them? There is no other way but to prepare a magic that can kill them in a single blow?”(kurono)
I doubt something that convenient exists.
“The most reliable way to kill an Apostle is to keep on attacking an Apostle with the full intent to die along with them. Even if they have infinite magical energy, the body that is human, will not be able to bear the burden of infinitely using magic. But, to exhaust the body of an Apostle to such a level, at least 10,000 soldiers are required, or so I have heard. I don’t whether that number is correct or not but if the Apostle ran away in between, their body will regenerate and you’ll be back to square one. There’s a chance that 10,000 men would be uselessly sacrificed as well.”(Fiona)
“A war of attrition is not impossible but is unrealistic, is it?”
The Apostles should be able to maintain their bodies at least. To fight till their body reached their limits——I see, to encircle one so that he doesn’t run away, it really will require at least 10,000 men against just 1.
“On the Arc continent, when against an Apostle, they either try to run away or try to hold them back, but never even think of killing them, or so I’m told. Though, there has been a case where the Apostle was actually killed in action, but they had sacrificed a lot of men for that.”(Fiona)
“And there are 12 of these guys.”(kurono)
Basically these guys alone are a full army. And adding the normal army soldiers to this…………the Syncrea Republic might actually possess a fighting force of 1000000.
“There’s no way all 12 would come to Pandora continent, so be relieved. Except the 7th Apostle, the rest won’t leave Elysion undefended and the others are also deployed towards the borders of the Republic to settle problems and maintain their hegemony. There are some Apostles that are even missing.”
“Missing? What do you mean?”
“I’ve heard, that one has mixed with the public and is secretly planning a world reform, one is secretly researching something, there are many other rumours as well like that actually there are not even 12 Apsotles, etc. I don’t know the truth though; they’re only rumours after all.”
World reformation? Well, whatever. It seems fine to just leave them be as long as they remain in the territory of the Republic while punishing villains and nobles in the name of justice while waving the flag their Cross.
This is actually favourable for us. Let Sariel be the only Apostle here, please.
“One becomes an Apostle not because of his/her faith, status or strength of magic but due to suddenly receiving the [Divine Protection] oneday out of nowhere. Thus, if there are those that work passionately for the church then there are also those who hide themselves and freely do whatever they want as well.”
“Since they have the Divine protection, they are in a religiously strong position and are also strong. There is no one who can comment or act against them, is it.”(kurono)
“The Pope is considered even among the Apostles hierarchically but as you would expect he is not that strong. But, the duty of the Apsotle, ‘to eliminate the enemies of God’, is common amongst all of them so they won’t betray the church. Even in history there has been no Apsotle that has betrayed the God.”(Fiona)
Although there are allowed to act independently and freely, as long as they are receiving strength from the White God, they’ll still protect their place it seems.
“Well it’s fine. If the Apostles are that special, we won’t be seeing them all the time. At least, they won’t directly come to attack the refugees.”(kurono)
The only Apostle on Pandora is Sariel. Not to mention that she’s also the supreme commander as well. I doubt she’ll move around very freely.
The territory of Daedalus is huge. They won’t focus on this far west rural area for no reason I think.
“But, even if Sariel doesn’t come, the normal capturing unit of Crusaders will definitely come. The problem is how strong they are and what are their numbers.”(kurono)
“I might be an ex-merc, but even I am not aware of such fine details of the Crusaders. If there’s something I can tell, then that would be that be only the basics about the knights and troops only.”
“No, I don’t know anything about them so that’s actually more than enough.”(kurono)
I have more or less understood the purpose of the Crusaders. All that’s left is the various reasons and interests of the various groups of humans.
I have no need to know all that.
All that I need to know is the specific military ability of the Crusaders.
“If possible, can I hear what Kurono-san had to say first?”(Fiona)
As I was wondering what should I ask first, such a demand came from Fiona-san.
“aa, that’s right, then I’ll tell what I had to say first.”
Where should I start——I worried about the same things when I first told Lily about this. Well, let’s start with the main core of the matter.
“Actually, I came here from a different world.”