Chapter 122 – Questions and Answers!
It was Solm who had raised his voice.
And so I lowered my weapon and said,
“Sorry. I also did not come here to fight.”
“I know that, Sir Joshua. In any case, Sir Vince. If you could just tell your men to…”
“…Very well. Children of the gods, return to your camp.”
The elderly priest called Vince said to the farmers of the Temple Knights.
They did not look very satisfied by this, but they obeyed Vince’s order and retreated to the place where they had pitched their tents.
Solm then turned to Vince and said,
“This is Sir Joshua. He is an old comrade of mine. Sir Joshua, this Highpriest Vince, from the south temple.”
I put down my weapon and walked over to Solm.
And then I said to Vince,
“Mr. Vince. Do you really intend to march south with those numbers and those weapons? It is beyond reckless.”
And then Vince glared at me with bloodshot eyes.
“What are you saying! We are warriors of the gods! We would never lose to those damned creatures!”
“You will lose! You are only five hundred! And are ill-equipped. I doubt you are even properly trained. What can you possibly accomplish!?”
“How dare you mock us! It is not a matter of numbers or weapons! Faith is the strongest weapon! With faith, we will surely vanquish the demon horde!”
This man called Vince was talking just like the farmers had.
It was clear that he had lost the ability to think properly.
However, if they had always been like this, then they would not have even been here.
“Then let me ask you this. Why did you wait so long? Why didn’t you march south sooner?”
Suddenly, Vince seemed like he was at a loss for words.
“How is it that you haven’t fought the Demon King up until now? If you had faith, surely you could have annihilated the Demon King Army sooner? Why did you leave the enemy free for so long?”
“Because…why? No, the Demon King Army is different now… No, that is no excuse for…”
As Vince held his head as if in pain, I cast healing magic on him.
“In any case, you must calm down. Let us drink some tea.”
And so I had Vince sit down on a nearby log.
And then I poured some tea made from Ent leaves into wooden cups.
Vince took a sip of the tea.
“It is so sweet… Hmm? Wh-what have I been…?”
“I will ask you again. Why are you headed south?”
“To fight the Demon King Army who took the southern city…we were preparing for that.”
“And yet, you don’t seem well-prepared at all to me. Not in numbers or weapons. You don’t even have enough food, do you?”
“It-it is as you say. Why did we rush like this?”
Vince looked confused as if he didn’t understand the reason himself.
Had some magic been cast on him? But, who had done it?
I could think of no reason why other humans would have prompted this. They had all wanted to fight already. What was the point in rushing it to this point?
Then the only explanation was…
“Iria, Melk. Could you share this with the other men as well?”
First, I gave Iria and Melk a large bottle of water.
I had mixed the water with powdered Ent leaves.
“Leave it to us.”
And so Iria and Melk headed over to the camp where the Temple Knights had gone.
And then I turned to Vince.
“Do you remember seeing a strange man?”
“Now that you mention it, a lone stranger did come…”
“What did he say?”
“That we should head south, because the gods would protect us. I told him that we were not ready yet… I know I did, but…”
“Do you remember the man’s face?”
“I do not. But…I remember a strange light.”
It must be Kyuby, or someone else who had the same bewitching power.
“Mr. Vince. I think it is possible that that man cast some kind of spell on you. It may be related to how monsters have become much more active lately.”
“You must be right. We would never have done such a thing otherwise. Sir Joshua, thank you. And Sir Solm, I am sorry about earlier.”
Vince bowed to Solm and me.
But Solm shook his head.
“Don’t worry about it. We all feel the same when it comes to defeating the Demon King Army. However, if what Sir Joshua says is true…”
“Similar confusion may be happening with the other temples.”
Vince nodded in agreement.
“It’s during times like these when the temples must be reliable, but… It angers me to have to retreat like this, but I must return north then. I will send letters to the other temples. We must have our feet firmly planted in the ground first. Would you allow my men to stay here for a while?”
“Of course, I do not mind. If anything, it would be reassuring.”
“Thank you. Once I am finished warning the other temples, I will return. But until then, please keep an eye on them.”
Vince said with a bow.
After that, thanks to the tea that Iria and Melk served, the other Temples Knights regained their sanity as well.
And on the following day, Vince took a few men and returned to the north.
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