I Became The Pope, Now What? - Chapter 256 256. Rise Of A Kingmaker
Chapter 256 256. Rise Of A Kingmaker
Finally, with one big thud, it abruptly stopped. Only one man appeared behind the door after that—a man less than six foot, bald on the head and hairless on the face too. One could easily fail to recognise the man as he looked ordinary and uninspiring.
“May the Holy Light Enlighten us, my brothers of the faith!”
Sylvester walked forward with a frown. This was the man he never liked and perhaps never will, for he knew that if anyone, he needed to be careful with him the most.
But still, he bowed his head and greeted, for the latter was too high above him. “Greetings, Saint Seer. What brings your esteemed self so far from the Church? These little menial tasks are too beneath you.”
The Spymaster smiled and looked around at the alert men of the Inquisition. He was shocked that they had not put down their weapons even after Sylvester announced who he was. Loyalty was absolute from what it appeared, and it worried him, making him raise his non-existent brows.
“You praise me too much, Archpriest. But, in the end, we all are servants of the faith.”
“What brings you here?” Sylvester got the point right away.
The bald spy kept looking around carefully. Sylvester knew precisely what the man was doing, as he did it too—checking the surroundings, reading the crowd’s mood, and predicting the subsequent actions.
“You did an amazing job, Archpriest. But seeing this matter involves the Duchy and the lives of millions, I have come to take over. So, you are freed from the command of the Inquisitors and the Crusaders—You may return to the Holy Land and see your mother.”
Tensions flared up instantly as everyone knew Sylvester would never leave his work unfinished. Not to mention, they were already done with it. So giving up now didn’t make sense.
Sylvester stared calmly into the bald man’s eyes and asked. “The great Seer sees all. I do wish to see my mother, but I took an oath in the name of Solis to let personal relationships be a thing of the past. So I’d rather finish my work before I return. But, may I know if you found out how the attackers reached my mother?”
The Spymaster shook his head expressionlessly. “Sadly, I couldn’t. I’m afraid that finding a mole in one’s own family is the hardest. But rest assured, we will find the main sinners soon. For now, the two attackers were dealt with by your new recruit on the spot.”
Sylvester kept looking into the man’s eyes for a second before moving. “Understood. I am finished here, and we have arrested the Witch. Let’s return to the surface and put her behind bars. We need to provide emergency help to the Cardinal as well.”
Saint Seer agreed. “Let’s move then.”
Sylvester waved his hand at the back and headed out alone. However, the veins on his forehead popped up as he suppressed his anger. ‘Bullshit! You may be a spymaster, but I know when you lie. But why lie—Did he have his hands behind the attack on mum? Does the Pope know? Or is the Seer from another faction?’
Sylvester felt extremely angry at that instant. But he knew he was powerless in such matters. He had no authority to override the orders of Saint Seer, a Cardinal member of the highest decision-making body.
“Chonky, did you take them?” Sylvester asked his loyal partner on the shoulder.
Miraj nodded dutifully. “Aye, aye, Maxy. I took all those dolls. Now they are locked and secure in the Chonky Bank.”
“Good. They may have the Duchy and the control, but with these dolls, I shall always have the lifeline in my hands.” Sylvester muttered and relaxedly climbed back up.
Yes, he was dissatisfied that the mission was being taken away from him. But he could understand it as the case was directly related to the life and death of a Duke and a war that all wanted to avoid.
Now or later, the involvement of the higher-ups was inevitable. But, he now worried about what was to come next as he was hoping to meet King Riveria personally with the head of the Duke as a gift. But if the Higher Ups deem him unworthy of handling something so big, they might not send him.
‘I need to speak with a few folks of power quickly.’
Sylvester walked out of the Castle and noticed many soldiers from the Holy Army manning the various places. The entire town was also taken over by the Church, it appeared. In contrast, his Inquisitor Army was pushed aside and forced to stand outside the town.
He went to them and ordered them to follow him back to their camp away from the town, near the battlefield that remained a wasteland now.
Soon, Felix, Sir Dolorem and the rest also came from behind and joined him. So the Duke’s Castle officially fell into Saint Seer’s hands. He didn’t care, however.
By evening, Sylvester reached the camp and reunited with the rest of the army. He still had too many prisoners, however. So he sent a man back to the Castle and requested Saint Seer to take the prisoners.
But when he looked around, he couldn’t find Isabella in the sick bay. So he went to the large tent set up for Lady Aurora.
When he arrived, he heard soft cries from inside. So he didn’t barge in and first tried to see what the situation was all about.
“H-How could Harold do this? Mum passed away, and he didn’t even call me for the cremation ceremony. I wanted to see her for one last time—just once. She was not a good mother, but I still have many fond memories… I will never see her again.”
Sylvester sighed outside. ‘So the Inquisitor High Lord did it. Forgive me, Isabella, but I must ensure peace until I learn to climb faster through the ladder of chaos.’
He walked inside the tent. “We have caught the Witch, and the battle is ov…”
“Sylvester!” Isabella jumped to her feet and rushed to hug Sylvester. “H-How did my mother die? Did someone kill her?”
“She died?” Sylvester acted shocked. “When?”<novelnext> </novelnext>
“You don’t know anything?” Isabella looked at his face. “She passed away three days ago.”
Sylvester caressed her head as he had realised by now that Isabella saw him as a guiding figure. “I don’t know what happened. But there must be a reason why your brother did this. Perhaps the war didn’t allow him to hold a long week of mourning.”
“But still…” She sobbed in silence.
Sylvester let her use his shoulder. He didn’t know the feeling of having one’s parents die. But he reckoned it was similar to having any loved one die. He also tried to imagine Xavia dying, which made him sad.
“The war here is over. You can return to Green City now. King Harold was not responsible, but Daemon was, and so was his Witch wife. She confessed herself.” Sylvester said. While he caressed her hair, he also used light magic to warm her.
In a few minutes, she cried herself to sleep. So Sylvester tucked her into the bed and looked at Lady Aurora.
“How are you?”
Lady Aurora patted her arms and shoulders, then gave a thumbs up. “Alive, in one piece, and stronger than ever. But how did I survive? How did you survive? I tried my best to keep Sir Maximus busy, but eventually, he overpowered me.”
Sylvester explained to her in brief words. “Lord Second, Bloodrain, appeared. He blasted Sir Maximus’ arms, healed us and ended the battle. I also chopped Duke Daemon’s arms and took his eyes before that. We also had the Witch arrested. But sadly, Saint Seer has appeared and has taken over everything. Right now, I’m officially jobless.”
Lady Aurora’s brows were touching her hairline. “What? So much has happened? So I missed the best parts, you mean? But it would make sense if Bloodrain was here. Even my father admires him.”
Sylvester finally asked her about the man. “Why? What’s his story? How did he get blind?”
Lady Aurora appeared offended but soon realised something. “Ah! You’re not a Bishop, so you can’t read real history books. Well, the man is hardcore. When he was the Inquisitor High Lord, the men under his command once committed a grave sin. They burned, pillaged and raped a desert town because the people of the town refused to serve the Inquisitor’s commands to give away their food and water.”
‘Very common occurrence, I must say.’ Sylvester thought. But, even he wasn’t prepared for the next part.
She continued excitedly. “Angered, Lord Bloodrain killed every man in that ten thousand-member Inquisitor Army and dragged the commanders by their necks to the Holy Land, by which they had died painfully. Then he entered the previous Pope’s Palace, knelt before the Pope’s feet, gouged his eyes out and presented it as an apology and surrender for punishment.”
Sylvester instinctively cursed. “Good God!”
She agreed with him. “Indeed, he is an extreme devotee of Solis, for whom he’d do anything. So the Pope, seeing Lord Bloodrain’s pain, decided to give him a special task. He ordered Lord Bloodrain to do two things. One, he was to ensure that Inquisitors never repeat their mistakes. Two, he was tasked with overseeing the conversion of Desert Cannibals and Mountain Tribes to the faith of Solis.”
‘No wonder I’ve never seen that man before in the Holy Land.’ Sylvester realised.
But this was somewhat of an eye-opener too. He liked to believe that the Lord Inquisitor was not the only loyal believer in Solis among the Guardians. Like Bloodrain, he hoped that there were others too.
“So the man blinded himself and still went on to become the Second Guardian? He’s crazy.” Sylvester mumbled in amazement.
Lady Aurora nodded and stood up, yawning. “He’s yet another role model I follow, minus the blindness. Anyway, I’m starving, so I’ll go find something to eat. Do you want something?”
Sylvester shook his head and walked out with her. “I will be writing my official application for a clergy promotion. It’s better to move fast, lest they forget my achievements.”
She agreed. “They should make you a Bishop easily. You’ve killed a bloody Soul Eater, held against a Grand Wizard, and defeated an overwhelmingly bigger army with the minimum casualty. Most men can’t achieve in their lifetime what you did in a few months.”
Sylvester crossed his fingers. “Let’s hope for the best, then. See you later.”
But Lady Aurora suddenly pulled his arm and looked him in the eye. “I’m asking this as your sister, so tell me the truth. Are we behind what happened in Green City?”
Sylvester took a long breath and patted her shoulder. “Aurora, you know better than me that some things are better left unspoken. However, if you wish to know more, the Lord Inquisitor will be able to answer.”
She already deduced her answer from his reply. Sighing, she shook her head. “Isabella… She’s a good girl. She deserves some happiness…is all I feel. I just…”
Sylvester completed her words. “Don’t want her to live through what you did? A life full of hardships, pain and sadness? Well, I’m sorry to say, as the new Queen of Gracia Kingdom, she will have to bear that burden.”
“Q-Queen? What? Isn’t her elder brother the King?”
Sylvester started stepping back while answering her in riddles. “Long gone is the time when lineage decided the King. Now we decide which side the throne shall swing. All to remove any liability—for long-lasting tranquillity.”
He turned around and left silently.
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