‘Interesting! Her change in status actually brought about such a huge change in her mentality so quickly?’ Leylin found it meaningful that the sisters had begun to change so quickly, despite being of the same status as them a little while ago. The mere change in their status made these two sisters act in such an unfamiliar way.
As they required Leylin’s protection on their journey, they had chatted with him in an amiable manner. But now that they had reached the imperial capital and had someone to rely on they drew the line, dividing their position and social class in the blink of an eye.
Leylin used Beelzebub’s memories to analyse most of her thoughts in a flash.
‘Excellent. Such an interesting soul will be the best candidate to corrupt and degrade into a devil… A vain heart…’ Just as Leylin was considering whether he needed to corrupt her, the rightful master, Viscount Daniel, finally spoke. “Hmm, if that's the case, then forget it. Give them a sum of money and make them leave quickly. What would others think if they saw them?”
“Yes, young master!” The butler standing behind Viscount Daniel tossed out a small bag of coins. “Take the money and get lost, you greedy vultures!”
“You…” Rafiniya instantaneously felt as though she could no longer recognise her her close friend, and suddenly became dispirited.
“Let’s go…” As she patted her mount’s head, Nick immediately let out a whinny, while Leylin scratched his nose and followed behind Old Pam, who had picked up the bag of money.
Viscount Daniel’s voice could be heard faintly as they left. “Why would you bother with those country bumpkins. Hera, Yalani, let me take you to…”
“Repulsive! Abominable! Why did Hera and Yalani turn out this way? Did they fall under the spell of a devil that took control of their hearts?” The young female knight finally yelled after they had walked a distance.
“Alright. These nobles are all revolting. Old Pam has seen it all. Only gold never lies!” Rafiniya was totally speechless at his greed for money, and could only roll her eyes after hearing what he said. Leylin, on the other hand, asked interestedly, “Why didn’t you just swear to become his follower right away? He’s a nobleman after all!”
“If I did that, the elders would kill me! Besides, do you think a dwarf will be conferred a title in a human country?” Old Pam winked, exposing his innate cunning self, “Old Pam would rather drown in rum than slog his guts out for a noble and end up with nothing…”
“Haha… You are a clever dwarf indeed…” Rafiniya was still a young lady after all, and was immediately amused by his humorous tone…
Leylin was the first to suggest disbanding when they reached a crossroad. “If there isn’t anything else, should we part ways here?”
“Part ways? Aren’t we going to get paid for the mission at the mercenary association?” Rafiniya was surprised, and also a little reluctant for some reason.
“I have other things to do.” Leylin declined tactfully, but even Rafiniya could read between the lines: he wanted to be alone. Once she understood this, she even had the urge to cry.
“Then… where will you be going?” The young female knight still asked stubbornly.
“I intend to stay in the imperial capital for a period of time, then begin my journey once again. My objective is not clear yet, perhaps I will make a trip to Silverymoon City up north. Goodbye…” Leylin seemed as though he was waving elegantly as he left.
But Rafiniya and Old Pam did not realise that a gloomy thread of light had already wound itself around Rafiniya’s body like a strand of hair, one that disappeared almost instantly.
‘The mark of a devil. I look forward to the moment when your soul falls from grace…’ The low mutter of a devil sounded in Leylin’s heart.
There were a few reasons he occasionally did right by Rafiniya and the others. For one thing, they were his group and saving them was a matter of course, but another reason was to observe the souls of people and attempt to corrupt them.
Leylin wasn’t a masochist. Why would he insist on waiting outside the viscount’s mansion otherwise? Did he lack that small sum of money? It was only at the actual scene that he could grasp the most subtle undulations of the soul and guide it!
‘From the looks of it, Hera and her sister have been consumed by vanity. With just a slight push, it would be perfectly normal for them to be lured in by the devil. Rafiniya, on the other hand, has the purest soul. Once she’s corrupted, she will possess strength that will make all the other devils drool…’
Once a soul like Rafiniya’s fell from grace, it would be extremely enticing for any formidable devil. However, Leylin was already a near Archdevil, and he naturally didn’t have to resort to such unclassy behaviour. It was out of prudent consideration that he decided to personally make a trip down to experiment on average human souls.
Since his main body had already robbed Beelzebub of all it had, having dealings with the underworld and other devils would be unavoidable. Even Leylin himself had a few devilish characteristics.
Souls in the World of Gods were different from those of the Magus World after all, and Leylin had to personally verify this matter. When he was in the outer seas, the people of his family were unsuitable to experiment on. As for those pirates, their souls were even similar to those of devils wreaking havoc!
Only Rafiniya and the others made Leylin’s eyes light up. This was precisely why he left made the mark of a devil on her, making it convenient for him to track and monitor her at any time.
‘All of these other matters can be put to one side. There are even more important matters to attend to on this trip to the imperial capital!’
The first problem that Leylin had to resolve was to cleanse himself of any suspicions of his piracy. Otherwise, the priests and paladins of the God of Justice would always follow him like houseflies, which was impossible for him to defend against. Even if he destroyed one group, others would emerge to come after him.
However, both Leylin and the nobles were very skilled when it came to distorting the truth and covering up evil deeds.
‘It’s simple in theory. As long as His Majesty makes a statement to conclude the case, it will be sufficient! After confirming the murderer, even the church of the God of Justice would be unable to continue investigating…’
Leylin was very clear on the fact that he currently was not considered a suspect. Even the priests and paladins of the God of Justice could only ‘seek his assistance in their investigation’ at the very most.
However, if they really did so, it would be all over for him! Which noble didn’t have a crime penalty tied to them, or wasn’t implicated in a grey area? Once a single event was uncovered, it would be linked to even more. He wouldn’t even be able to think of walking out of the church alive at the end of it all.
His only path was to nip this in the bud; the church’s hand was reaching too far.
‘Once the king makes his final conclusion, it will be difficult for even the church to overthrow it. After all, they must respect the royalty in this region. The network of connections that the Faulen Family has is insufficient for this…’
Leylin was in deep thought. ‘It would be best if a member of his majesty’s inner ministerial circle spoke on my behalf, and he would have to be a very important person. The network that Beelzebub left behind would probably come in handy in this aspect…’
The higher one’s status as a noble, the easier one would become corrupted and collaborate with the devil. The same happened to the king of Dambrath, and even the person in charge that Beelzebub had personally appointed himself before he entered dormancy. It was undeniably a form of mockery towards the gods.
‘Let me see… In the list of names of the chiefs in charge in the Dambrath region, the one situated in the Dambrath Kingdom’s capital is…’ Leylin browsed through the information that the A.I. Chip had recorded. An odd smile gradually crept onto his face. ‘Interesting… A devil?’
In Beelzebub’s memory, the imperial capital of Dambrath was obviously the main disaster area where devils wrecked havoc. He had even specially dispatched a devil over for the convenience of control.
Although she was suppressed by the prime material plane, she should still have the strength of a high-ranked Professional. She had even mastered a few special concealment techniques to help Beelzebub’s believers successfully avoid countless searches by the churches.
“A smart chap,” Leylin evaluated her indifferently. If Leylin had used his true strength to subdue her, then the outcome of the fight wouldn’t even need to be considered. Unfortunately, fairness didn’t exist in such matters from the start.
With Beelzebub’s memories, Leylin had control over a trump card that could instantly make him an archenemy!
“But before I subdue her, I’ll go meet an old friend!” A strange smile flashed across Leylin’s face.
“Damn it! Damn it! Those loathsome nobles all have their eyes on my territory, and have completely forgotten about their friendship with the Golden Thornblossoms…” Also in the imperial capital was Leylin’s old acquaintance. Viscount Tim had returned from the imperial palace, crestfallen.
Being a spy, he’d fortunately escaped the unforeseen event of the Pirates’ Tide, and had even brought a portion of the family’s wealth to the mainland. Soon after, he began to take action in the imperial capital in hopes of obtaining the title of Marquis of the Gold Thornblossom family, as well as the territories in the Baltic archipelago.
However, reality had slapped him in the face. Once the old marquis had passed away, his original relationships had all become invalid. Those nobles of the imperial capital with their insatiable appetites had started planning to split up the Baltic archipelago; the profits from oceanic trade were enough to make these nobles go green with envy.
After multiple trips to the palace to meet with the king, he realised that His Majesty also seemed unenthusiastic about his requests.
‘Although we are blood relatives, the benefits are irresistible to others. Unless someone with real authority is willing to support me… I didn’t bring a lot of gold coins, who should I choose…’ Just as Viscount Tim was pondering over that, a servant entered to ask for instructions. “Sir, there’s another noble requesting to see you. He displayed the Faulen Family’s badge…”
*Ping!* The exquisite porcelain cup in Viscount Tim’s hand fell onto the floor right away.
“The Fau… Faulens!” Tim covered his forehead. “Is he still not going to let me off?”
In his heart, there was no difference between Leylin and other demons and devils. Ironically, that was indeed the truth.
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