8. The Fake Saint’s Evolution into a Genuine One (Another Perspective)
(The Knight Captain’s POV)
I was the youngest knight captain in history. I was prepared to devote my life to the defense of the kingdom with that honor in my heart.
Because both my father and grandfather had devoted themselves to the kingdom as knights, I vowed to work properly so as to not embarrass the two I respected the most.
—However, because of that selfish saint, my pride as a knight was trampled.
It happened right after I became a captain.
As the saint was about to deal with public affairs, she appointed the best knights of the kingdom as her escorts. As for me, I became the saint’s exclusive escort.
It was a great honor for all of us to receive such a task. But in just one day, the saint had fired them all.
As a result, I, the captain of the group, was called to the palace and subsequently met the saint.
From the very beginning, that girl was the absolute worst.
“Those knights were nothing more than a bunch of gorillas! They’re the worst! For my escorts, I absolutely refuse to take in anyone who isn’t handsome! Repick them!”
I didn’t think someone’s face had anything to do with escort duty. However, when I pointed that out, the saint looked very displeased. Then, she cried to His Majesty.
The current king was awful because he was the one who had spoiled the saint rotten. It was all because he wanted to reform the old customs.
In the end, the king acquiesced to the saint’s selfishness. She was given permission to handpick her own escorts from the knights.
The saint then proceeded to ignore her escorts’ abilities and personalities in favor of their looks. Because she wanted good-looking escorts, her choices were based on their appearances alone. No one would be happy at being selected for such a standard. Those who were picked to be her escorts had uniformly sour expressions.
…I was also nominated as her escort, that was very annoying.
Because I was their leader, I was told to escort the saint at all times—which was impossible. I directly appealed to His Majesty, but the saint didn’t like that.
She once again abused her authority and forced me into becoming her escort. Afterwards, she proceeded to harass me every day.
The saint just wanted me to surrender to her. Thus, she always told me to prostrate myself before her.
She’d say, “Darren, become a chair.” even though a chair was present and then proceeded to sit on me when I was on all fours.
Of course, I refused at first—
“—That has nothing to do with escorting.”
Of course, she took the issue to His Majesty, and I received a royal decree to obey her.
Chairs and armrests were fine, but when she rode a carriage, it was nothing but humiliation when she treated me like a staircase to step on. My subordinates were angrier at that treatment than me. As a result, there was animosity between the knights and the saint.
As long as the king was on the side of the chair, we were the ones who’d get punished if we went against her. Many of my subordinates supported the lives of their family with their income. I couldn’t let them get fired because of me.
The ancient of the House of Lords, who couldn’t bear to see the situation, appealed to the king.
Thus, under the notion of ‘upholding the defense of the kingdom’, I was freed from the role of escort.
But it was to no avail.
She’d find a reason to summon me every day.
As such, her harassment continued.
The pilgrimage was an important event related to national affairs. Hence, the king appointed me as a companion for that trip because it mustn’t fail.
I was already in anticipation of how tedious the saint was going to be.
However, she suddenly said she was going on a honeymoon and fled from the capital with her people.
The church seemed to have known about the plan in advance and had intended to foil it. They planned to separate her from her entourage. The saint would be the only one to go on the pilgrimage. They believed that without her troublesome entourage, the saint would become more docile.
The priest, Luka, was a cunning man who managed to capture the saint and brought her back.
No matter how hard of a tantrum she threw, she wouldn’t be able to do so inside the carriage we had specifically prepared.
My subordinates and the magician twins were all eager to relieve their resentment during the pilgrimage.
The pilgrimage destinations included foreign lands. Many of those lands held grudges against our kingdom which had force them during a crisis to abandon their previous beliefs and convert to the religion of the Goddess. As part of those conversions, churches were forcibly built within many lands to the misery of their inhabitants.
From the beginning, I knew hard times awaited the saint who was going visit those areas for her missionary work.
In the village where we first stopped, the saint was about to learn her lesson.
I was wondering what that little girl, who had been touted as a saint, and had never been denied anything in her life, would look like when confronted with pure malice.
When a raw egg was thrown at the saint, I truly believed she’d cry helplessly…
…but what happened was beyond my imagination.
“Arrrrgh—!! Those fucking brats—!!”
The saint yelled like a gorilla and leaped towards the children with tremendous speed. She scolded them for wasting food, talked about the health benefits of eggs, and told them to apologize to the poultry farmers and the chickens. Moreover, the saint also complained that they had thrown a raw egg at her instead of a boiled one. If it had been boiled, she’d have gladly eaten it.
That’s the reason you’re angry?
You do know you were hit with a raw egg? Your head is all sticky. Are you fine with that?
Having failed to comprehend anything, my subordinates and I, along with the children, were confused by the saint’s anger.
However, when I thought about it calmly, what the saint said was true.
It seemed that I had been blinded by the saint’s infamous selfishness. I truly believed nothing decent could come out of her mouth.
That event changed my view of the saint.
Until now, her troublesome entourage had always been by her side. As a result, that child might had been poisoned by them.
I couldn’t just forgive the saint for all her mistreatment until now. However, if she truly possessed the qualities of the saint, I decided to make sure that I wouldn’t be prejudiced against her during the trip.
Thus, I decide to bear witness of her prayer ritual, something I usually didn’t do…
I thought she merely did it for formality’s sake, but my common sense was overturned. My arrogant thought that she didn’t deserve the title of the saint was blown away instantly.
As soon as the saint began to express her salutations, the air changed.
The dusty room was cleaned all at once. While I was taken aback, a grain of light burst from the saint’s body. In the next moment, everything inside the room was cleansed.
I was there, too. As a result, my clothes, which had been soiled with dust, became clean as if they had been freshly washed.
That was… the power of the saint.
It was akin to a miracle.
Her back exuded a divinity unlike that of her usual selfish and wicked self. Because of what I had witnessed, I was so ashamed, I wanted to beat myself up.
…At that moment.
As the saint stood up, her veil floated softly. The light shining through the window basked her smiling face for a moment.
When I saw her face, I finally realized it—
—Ah, I see. This woman is the true saint.
I was a fool. I was blinded by deceit.
Even though the truth was right in front of me from the start, I couldn’t see it.
I couldn’t see it because of hatred. Because of foolishness.
For me to stare at her with contempt and malice—such was my sin.
I couldn’t face myself like that. I had to be punished so I could forever be reminded of my foolishness. I wanted to be punished.
So, I told her—
“—Saint! Please step on me!”
***T/N: …At least, from half of this chapter, it can be inferred that Darren is inherently a normal guy… or… not? Explain, Darren, is this the result of you being humiliated too much by the bichsaint, or you just need the correct girl to tap into your inner chairnality?