prised I could easily read the letter.
Why do I know how to read a script that I’ve never seen? How does someone know something they shouldn’t know?
The answer to that question was explained in the letter itself.
Originally, I should have gone with the Elder Saint and she would have told me in person but with her death, she’d left letters and notes instead.
Her knowledge as a Saint had been handed down from generation to generation through rituals.
I would struggle to access that knowledge for a while but all the answers could be found within me.
Her letter ended with a plea to save this country which she loved so dearly.
Her heartfelt words created a sharp pain in my chest.
…If I had been born somewhere else.
I wonder if I could have known her better if I lived in a town where I could be easily appraised instead of a small village that wasn’t even on the map I wondered if I could have learned the role of the Saint slowly and carefully.
If only she had lived a little longer.
My heart full of emotion, I couldn’t help but ask, “I would like to offer my prayers.
Can you guide me?”
I stared at the hand that was held out and stood without its aid.
I still didn’t know much about being the Saint, but the burden of the responsibility entrusted to me weighed heavily on my back.
It seemed the Elder Saint was being literal when she said all the knowledge I needed was already inside my head.
I didn’t know how to pray, but my body performed the motions like I had been doing them all my life.
The mourning rites and purification ritual of the country seemed to spring out of me by themselves.
My feet guided me back to the room from the other day so I could mourn the Elder Saint.
What should have been a pure white room with a lone statue of God looked much different now that I had learned how to use the power of the Saint.
The light spread out like a map and jet-black darkness ate at it along the edges.
The places where the two met represented the boundaries of the country.
The only bright spot along the edge was my village.
By purifying it before leaving, it shone as brightly as a star.
But looking around, the rest of the country was a dark gray color.
Though there was some variation, many places were almost completely black.
This was bad.
A place with white light was purified while somewhere in the gray darkness was corrupted.
The darker the color, the stronger the contamination, and the more difficult to purify.
In highly polluted areas, normal animals became twisted into demonic beasts that attacked people.
Because of the danger, trade with other countries was suffering.
The power of the Elder Saint had faded considerably over the years.
My generation’s Saint should have been discovered before the Elder Saint grew old and frail but was instead greatly delayed.
She must have been forced to over extend her powers.
I stared down at the floor, trying to determine the order of purification.
While it would have been nice to purify everything at once, that’s impossible.
I’d have to do it little by little, started with the most polluted areas and around major trade routes.
It’s the same as plowing a field, you couldn’t do it all once, you had to take it slow.
Then I wanted to use the power of purification but I stopped myself, thinking, ‘If you purify beyond your limits, you’ll be useless for the rest of the day.
Or worse, you might fall asleep for a few more days.
In that case, it would be better to deal with other troublesome things first.
“Ummm… Wieland, right?”
“Yes, Saint,” said the knight who had brought him from the village all the way to the Capitol.
Until this, I felt it would be impolite if I, a villager, casually used his name, but I was the Saint now.
There were many knights here, so it would be better to address them by name.
At least, that was my though process as I addressed him.
Why was he smiling like that? Is he really so happy to hear his name from an old man?
Feeling bad for him, I continued to talk to him about what was on my mind.
As I carefully expressed my hopes, Wieland’s eyes opened wide.
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