She's The Older Sister Of The Yandere Male Lead In A BL Novel - Chapter 14
2. The temple, and separation
“What, you don’t like me being mushy?”
“No, never mind. This is better.”
He doesn’t like it at first, then backtracks again. I played with the straw in front of me, then I asked lightly.
“Because I’m scared of you when you’re mad.”
I got angry only once. I guess it stuck to his mind.
I won’t get angry anyway unless Lisandro does something wrong. Other than that, nothing else would set me off.
Even so, I didn’t deny his words and gave my last warning before I left for the temple.
“Then continue being scared. Don’t make me angry, okay?”
My lovely baby brother will probably remember this and keep his word until the end.
Lisandro was that kind of younger brother.
“…So what Your Grace is saying is that you will make it so that Lady Yurenia will remain as a symbol.”
“Yes, that’s the plan.”
Hailey Rogelio nodded slowly without denying anything.
Billium groaned inwardly.
He was someone who devoted himself and his talents to the people, so he couldn’t say something against another, even if it was something he didn’t agree with.
Even though his influence gradually weakened, he followed the doctrine of God and led the believers without letting go of his hope.
And as he had been a Pope for quite some time, he was already old and exhausted.
He was only a simple old man whose power was already weakening, but his glimmering blue eyes showed wisdom unlike any young man’s.
Instead of sitting quietly round the table, the high priests all groaned quietly.
Only the high priests and the Pope knew that the saint had appeared.
The oracle had come to them, and it was a cause for joy, but then the lord of the Rogelio family immediately asked for a meeting with them.
They accepted her with no intention of refusing.
She was from a noble household who gave the greatest support to the temple, but even more so because Hailey’s daughter was the first saint to appear in seventy years.
Yet despite the oracle, they couldn’t rejoice because Hailey wanted her daughter to remain only as a ‘symbol’.
To be honest with them, the proposal she presented to the presbyteral council wasn’t bad.
‘Everything’s for the benefit of the temple. The problem of devotion that Her Grace has pointed out is also… This is a good way to make up for it. There’s nothing better than this to resolve the situation when the saint has appeared late.’
Stroking his long beard, Billium was visibly troubled. The plan that the Duchess proposed was really quite good.
It was a systematic plan to take care of more people at a higher level of service that the temple has been doing thus far.
It was right to accept it right away, but there was only one reason why he couldn’t.
Hailey was saying that her daughter will remain as a symbol, but what she’s implying is that the saint would be set up as a scarecrow.
Everyone noticed the hidden meaning very well, but he couldn’t nod right away just because he liked the sound of the plan.
If she became a scarecrow saint, would it be good for the child?
The love of the people would be reduced, and her authority might wane.
He didn’t care about anything else, but he was worried that the child might get hurt by this in the long run.
“…Is this something that Lady Yurenia allowed?”
“My daughter was the one who proposed this.”
“Lady Yurenia brought it up herself?”
At the unexpected answer, all the high priests were surprised, even Billium.
“Yuni will become the saint of the Empire, but she is also my daughter. Even if she’s a saint, this fact still stands.”
They all listened to Hailey wordlessly.
“You all know enough. The people of this country think that the saint’s sacrifice is a natural virtue, but… But do you think it really is so?”
None of them could answer.
All of the priests hung onto the sacrifice of the saint, knowing that this would protect them.
But they couldn’t answer the question easily. They were soft-hearted people in the first place, so they couldn’t ignore the pleas of the people of the Empire.
“My daughter is still young. She’s the first saint who appeared after seventy long years, do you think the people would stay still? She’d be burdened by so much pressure. They’d go crazy just at the mention of holy power. And what about the nobles? They’ll want to get their claws on the saint by throwing their money at the temple just so they could be blessed.”
Everything she said was true.
They all knew it to their very core, to the point that they’d get sick and tired of it because these situations were mentioned in historical records.
In exchange for riches, they would try to get the saint.
However, the priests had never been misled by material things. This could be considered as the temple’s greatest pride.
“There’ll be countless worms trying to coax and manipulate my daughter because she’s still young. I’ll be supporting you from behind, so they won’t dare to do something like that so openly, but can I trust you to protect her from all of this?”
Billium and the high priests, who were contemplating the pressure that would befall Yurenia, waved their hands in surprise at Hailey’s words.
“W-What upsetting things must you say? We know better than anyone else that…”
“I apologize if we don’t seem trustworthy, Your Grace. But you must know that gold and silver treasures are useless to us.”
Yes, of course. They’re like that.
Detachment from material things and kindness above all else were two of God’s virtues that they continually upheld.
That’s why it’s dangerous.
Even if the saint herself was God’s proxy, Hailey was wary because they’ll still force the saint to sacrifice herself just because it’s expected of her.
Of course, there would be no harm to them.
However, kindness that was seemingly harmless was sometimes more evil to the other person.
Hailey had no intention of letting her daughter suffer like that.
It was better to get rid of anything remotely pointing towards that path.
“I want my daughter to live as she does now.”
A life where she could enjoy luxury, where she could buy everything she wanted to buy and enjoy everything that she wanted to enjoy.
Certainly, Hailey’s sentiments were understandable.
And they knew well that the saint, Yurenia, was still young.
Not only was it impossible for them to force Yurenia, but it also did not fit the doctrine of L’Aquila.
L’Aquila, the God himself, said that children, women and the elderly must be protected unconditionally.
It was the same for Yurenia.
Even though she had become a saint, it didn’t mean that she had become a god herself. She was young and she deserved to be protected.
“We know better than anyone else who it is that we must protect.”
“Yes, we all know how noble of a sacrifice the past saints have made. I don’t need to give a direct example, but you know…”
Hailey tapped the table slowly with one long finger, prolonging what she wanted to say.
She looked around and stared at the people sitting around the table.
Mild, gentle faces.
They were pure-hearted adults, like children who couldn’t lie, let alone cheat.
Knowing that, Hailey had no hesitation in donating a large amount of money here.
In fact, the temple had never pointlessly spent the money donated to them.
They never used the money for themselves and instead returned it all back to the people. They were trustworthy.
But would they be able to protect Yurenia?
“I’m just a mother who’s already heartbroken at the thought of my daughter having to devote and sacrifice herself for the noble good.”
Billium understood her side. Being the Pope, he knew very well.
“Is there anything else you want from us other than what’s stated in this proposal?”
Billium would like to accept this plan as much as possible. As he talked with Hailey more, his heart became more firm about this.
Even if it didn’t, Billium recalled the day he received the oracle.
This was a separate request from God’s word, but it was a desperate request.
Hailey thought that they would raise some arguments, but the temple was generally in favor of the plan.
Rather than being surprised by this, Hailey thought that this was natural.
Just thinking about the temple and them raising an argument made her laugh in vain.
“I want to change the role of the saint starting with changing the temple’s methods. As I mentioned earlier, the sacrifice of the saint has become just something that’s expected of her.”
Just as the temple’s benevolence was seen as natural.
For the people of the Empire, the saint’s sacrifice was also natural.
After being in the care of numerous saints over the course of history, they did not feel any gratitude towards the saint any longer.
The one in the wrong wasn’t the temple, but the people.
With dignified grace, Hailey spoke.
“But the saint’s sacrifice should never be taken for granted.”
“Then… Can you give us your specific plans?”
“First of all, I heard that the saint’s purification and blessing are practices that are imposed even when this rule isn’t truly established.”
“That’s right. There was no need for it to be changed, but many have been accustomed to the saint’s blessings…”
“Then let’s change it now.”
Seeing how determined Hailey was, they had no choice but to nod quietly.
They felt like they were being scolded by a teacher, but it didn’t make them feel bad.
In fact, these days the people have slowly started turning away because they weren’t satisfied with the temple’s service, and so this had weakened their holy power, and this hurt the temple a lot.
At this rate, the temple’s future was in danger…
Billium’s heart ached. He didn’t want to show this because he had to be the temple’s steadfast pillar, but even the priests knew this was true.
That’s why he couldn’t find it in him to reject Hailey’s proposal. She had just presented a way to maintain the temple even without a saint.
“My daughter said she has no intention of giving blessings or purifications to anyone else other than those who are desperately in need of them. Even so, she wouldn’t be lax in strengthening the barriers of the holy grounds, so she said that you have nothing to worry about.”
The child seemed to have spoken maturely, so two high priests had chuckled despite the situation.
However, no one was to blame. Everyone in the room felt the same way as those two.
“What do you say?”
At this final question, they all turned their gazes to the Pope.
Everyone thought that every saint must sacrifice their body to help the people and they called this a noble sacrifice, but Billium did not agree with this.
The high priests and the Pope all knew that the saints had to give up their lives and had to suffer a lot. Their lives had been painstakingly recorded in the books that had been passed down to them.
The saints had always been willing to accept God’s will and continued doing good deeds without any complaints.
But the saint who appeared this time didn’t want this.
“I would like to honor Lady Yurenia’s wishes. We’ve been thinking the same thing for a while, so how could we burden the saint like this.”
To be precise, the saint’s sacrifice was something that the temple could not be involved with in any way. It was a sacrifice that could be done only by the saint.
There’s no guarantee that the saint would continue to appear over the course of history. Someday, there could be a time when God’s proxy would never appear.
And even now, it’s been seventy years since the last one.
Moreover, there was no way to make sure that the saints who’d appear in the future would be truly good people who would willingly sacrifice their lives for the greater good.
It was time for a change—time for the temple to take the lead in helping the people without the saint’s help.
And this opportunity was given by the extremely affluent Duchy of Rogelio.
“I would like to receive help from Your Grace. The young Lady Yurenia still needs to be protected, until later when she doesn’t need to lean on anyone anymore. I’d like to respect her wishes. What about you all?”
Billium asked the high priests, and they all readily nodded with warm smiles on their lips as though they had nothing to worry about.
“Lady Yurenia is someone we need to protect, and we…”
The high priest paused and made eye contact with the Pope. Then, he turned to Hailey.
His gentle eyes were filled with great determination.
“Our God, L’Aquila, has appointed the saint through the oracle, and I agree with respecting her wishes. I want to help her with everything, whatever it may be.”
“If this is what Lady Yurenia desires, we will gladly follow her word.”
I mentioned that I needed some time to think by myself while cleaning and organizing stuff in my room, so I kicked everyone out.
When it was time for me to organize the bookshelf to see if I missed anything, something caught my eye.
I saw the book 〈Dawn of the Full Moon〉 just gathering dust on my bookshelf. I should have read this and returned it right away.
I scratched my cheek in embarrassment. Frey never mentioned anything about wanting it back, so I completely forgot about it.
If I wasn’t organizing the stuff I’d be bringing with me to the temple, I would have never remembered it.
Since I didn’t know when I’d come back, I decided to just give it back to Frey. But when I grabbed it—
A strong spark repelled my hand.
I automatically retracted my hand and clenched it in pain.
The book that was pulled out of place fell onto the floor.
Then many pages flipped over wildly even though there was no wind blowing.
Something black was being swallowed by a white light, and it wasn’t until then that the book grew calm. I could only gape as I watched.
It was clearly a paranormal phenomenon, and my spine went numb as I realized this.
A horror scene right before I went into the temple?
But there should be no one holding a grudge against me!
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