The Goddess of Weeping, also known as Mistress of the Whip, was called Amyter. She was a kind-hearted goddess, and her teachings included having her followers redeem their souls through suffering.
It was like when a forest was larger, birds were all the same. In the World of Gods, a few exotic gods existed, and this crying female was one of them.
The God of Suffering, Ilmater, taught his followers to suffer and endure the pain, but Amyter was different. She even requested that her priests and followers abuse themselves and obtain redemption through suffering!
Oh Gods! Even if Ilmater requested his followers to endure, he never wanted them to actively abuse themselves!
Hence, in simpler terms, Amyter’s followers were a bunch of insane people who abused themselves, especially the priests.
Whenever there was a huge celebration, Amyter’s priests and followers would gather, using lashes, wooden cangues and even red hot brands to ‘pray’. This would earn themselves favour from the goddess, and amongst the divine spells the goddess granted were some that raised one’s endurance of pain.
Gods like these had no market amongst regular commoners and were rarely seen. Leylin had almost not recognised her at the beginning, though she seemed to be welcomed by some exceptional enthusiasts.
This priestess of the goddess walked along the streets, praying for passersby to bestow pain on her to gain donations. This was an event that their church retained.
“I apologise, but I believe in the God of Knowledge, Oghma… This is just…” Leylin knew he was no pervert and immediately used an excuse.
“The goddess taught us not to mind the identity of the person inflicting pain on us, because they give us the redemption that is in suffering. We need to be grateful towards them… Please help me with my prayer!” The priestess looked resolute.
“I…” Leylin was rendered speechless. In addition, an increasing number of people were gathering, and he wanted to escape as soon as possible.
Just as Leylin tossed a gold coin to the little girl’s donation box and raised the whip, as if preparing to finish it in one go, he suddenly felt his hair stand on end. It was like he was being stared at by some terrifying beast.
Knowing something was off, he dodged, evading a frightening qi slash.
*Crash!* The powerful qi blade of light swept the area Leylin had stood at and smashed the limestone behind him to smithereens, revealing the strength of the person who had launched the sneak attack.
Along with this attack came the dainty call from a young girl, “Ah… Such despicable behaviour of bullying women is just an insult to my way as a knight. I, Rafiniya, won’t let you off!”
“Which moron is it?”
Leylin turned back furiously. It was bad enough being requested to abuse someone by their request, but he was now being treated as a thug who was bullying the weak. Even with his thick skin, he was beginning to get ashamed.
“You dare do this but not admit to it? Everyone on the streets saw your violent behaviour, you despicable bastard!”
The person who had attacked him was a young and beautiful female knight, her wine-red long hair tied into a ponytail. Her pretty cheeks were now flushed in her anger, eyes fixed on Leylin and shooting out hatred. It was as if she could not wait to bite off a piece of flesh from Leylin.
“A high-ranked knight? Have you even made sense of the situation yet?” Leylin looked at the way this knight was dressed and the tall warhorse behind her, rather surprised.
Though they were still a physical Profession, knights were far removed from warriors. Not only was their armour extremely expensive, but a warhorse that one could ride into battle was not so easily obtained.
A warhorse was worth over ten times as much as a regular one, and on top of that it needed a specialised groomer and other service Professionals in charge of it. In exchange, it allowed a knight’s destructive power to be far ahead of a warrior’s.
In addition, high-ranked ones could, after affirming their faith, turn into knights of gods, learning to cast spells. Such Professionals were the ideal prince charming in the hearts of many young girls.
‘To be able to become a high-ranked Professional at such a young age, this doll must have a pretty good background. She should be nobility…’ Leylin sized her up. Through the attack just now, he could estimate that she should be at or above rank 10 as a knight.
‘A.I. Chip, scan!’ He commanded on the inside.
[Beep! Mission established, beginning scan…] The A.I. Chip loyally carried out his instructions, and soon enough, a passage of information was relayed.
[Name: Rafiniya. Gender: Female. Strength: 10 Agility: 6 Vitality: 7 Spirit: 5(Estimate). Rank 10 Knight. Abilities: 1. Abilities increase from 11-19% in power when mounted. 2. Armour: Full body knight armour has increased physical defence, but led to a similar decrease in resistance towards magic.]
‘As expected of a high-ranked Professional, She even has a boost from her mount!’ Leylin nodded inside. However, brazenly sizing her up was only making her more angry.
“What’s wrong with this city? How can these hoodlums commit such evil in broad daylight? Has this place turned into a city praying to the devils and demons?”
The female knight’s chest bounced up and down. The teasing gazes of the passersby only made her more infuriated.
“Please withdraw your unfair allegations!” At this moment, the priestess of Amyter stood out. “Our Lady Amyter, opposes all evil! In addition, you need to apologise for interrupting my prayer ceremony, else you’ll be profaning our Lady!”
“Huh! What? W- Why?” Rafiniya’s mouth widened slowly, and she looked stunned.
Following that, a patrol guard separated the crowd and came up to them, staring at the female knight with malicious intent, “You’ve destroyed the appearance of the city. Based on city hall law number 329, you must pay a fine of 10 gold kronas, or else we’ll have to place you in prison…”
“Oh God of Justice! This actually happens? There’s no such person at my old place…” After the ruckus, the surrounding crowd, patrolling soldiers and the priestess quickly left, leaving Leylin and the female knight Rafiniya behind.
However, her face was like a huge red apple. This was her shame. However, at the mention of the goddess’s name, the girl immediately halted. No matter how preposterous and strange this goddess’ style was, she was still a goddess! She needed to show respect at least on the surface, or she’d risk being put on trial by the other churches.
“You must be from another area, right? This goddess really doesn’t have a great reputation, but it’s best to find out about stuff like this before leaving on travels. The consequences of doing something taboo will be dire…” Leylin gravely reprimanded her, controlling his urge to laugh.
After the fine had been paid, the priestess of Amyter had requested a very strange compensation of Rafiniya— she wanted the knight to whip her ruthlessly!
Leylin ‘kindly’ handed his share of this matter over to the girl, getting her to do it as an apology. It was obviously humiliating for this knight who seemed noble and refined to lash a weak person like a scoundrel.
Thankfully, everything was soon over, or else Leylin reckoned Rafiniya would probably commit suicide.
“I understand!” She went over to the side of her war horse, showing her back to Leylin to hide her embarrassment, “I apologise for what happened just now. I shouldn’t have treated you that way before making sense of the situation!”
As a knight, Rafiniya still did as should be based on the code of honour. At the very least, she had done well upholding justice, and was willing to change after learning that she was in the wrong.
“My name is Rafiniya, and I’m a travelling knight. Nice to meet you!”
“Mm. My name is Ley; I’m a mercenary.” Leylin scratched his head.
A travelling knight? That was practically a joke! It was well-known that knights had huge requirements when it came to logistics. Without a professional groom and someone maintaining armour as well as weapons, a knight was useless.
Leylin looked at the warhorse behind her sympathetically. As expected, it was already looking dispirited and showed signs of malnutrition.
‘It’s already strange that a noble lady is training to be a knight. She’s even travelling alone. How open is her family? Or is this perhaps one of those people who are escaping marriage?’
Being eyed by Leylin, Rafiniya lowered her head, slightly ashamed. She abruptly got onto her war horse, elegant and speedy, showing the results of bitter training, “Though there was a misundering in our meeting, things thankfully ended well. May I know the way to the Mercenary Guild?”
“Head east, and you’ll find it quickly!” Leylin was speechless at this young girl, who looked like she’d been brainwashed by stories of knights.
“Thank you very much! Someday, under the guidance of fate, we’ll meet again!” She naturally urged her handsome horse forward, and the mount snorted as it darted away.
“But that’s the west. You’re going in the wrong direction…” Leylin watched the direction in which she had left, but she had already disappeared.
“High-ranked knights who are directionally challenged are really quite rare. She didn’t prepare much and is adventuring. Hopefully, she won’t get attacked by ogres or gnomes and become jerky…” Leylin silently prayed for her and then returned to his inn.
For him, all that had happened today was merely a fun event in the long journey that was life. It was not worthy to ruminate over.
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