SYS (Novel) Chapter 516

C516

While Joshua fell, the ceremony honoring Black Knight Jane proceeded solemnly.

Servants held a long silent prayer outside the mausoleum, carrying mourning flowers in their hands...

And the Guardian Knights, holding their swords upside down, formed a path leading to the mausoleum.

Rosa held Jane's black helmet as if it were a portrait, and Murakan stood by her side.

The Black Knights, Flagbearers, Elders, Family scribes, and Guardian Knights followed. All wore black uniforms and mourning attire.

They passed by the densely planted swords in the courtyard, heading to the deepest part.

Even before the procession entered the mausoleum, a thick iron-like scent permeated the air, like the aroma of blood.

The Black Sword flag fluttered slowly in the cold mausoleum wind.

The sound echoed through the stones inside like a mournful cry, but there was no one truly weeping.

Those capable of shedding tears swallowed them, while those who couldn't suppressed their emotions.

Only Jane's black helmet occasionally gleamed in the darkness.

This was a special place prepared for those who had faithfully protected the Family until the end.

For the Black Knights, the mausoleum could be considered the final point of their pilgrimage.

Unless they committed treason, they were destined to be buried here.

The mausoleum darkened as it deepened.

And the procession gradually diminished.

Family members, including scribes and stewards, stopped walking at the entrance, and the elders stood upright in the middle.

Those who remained in the procession until the end were Rosa, the Black Knights, the flagbearers, and Murakan.

Only their outlines were visible when they reached the end.

Rosa placed Jane's helmet on the specially prepared stone coffin.

"Even if the day comes when the Garden of Swords crumbles into pieces, scattered by the wind, and the world forgets even the name Runcandel. Your loyalty and glory will never leave this place."

Murakan created a mourning flower with Shadow Energy and placed it in front of Jane's black helmet.

"Thank you, Jane."

The stone coffin closed, and the procession exited the mausoleum after a while.

Upon leaving, the order reversed compared to the entrance, and those who had been waiting at the front rejoined the procession.

The procession finally exited the mausoleum, and the knights who had been waiting raised mourning flags all over the Garden of Swords.

Thus, the ceremony to bury Jane's soul in the mausoleum, which had lasted from dawn until noon, came to an end.

Originally, the burial in the mausoleum would take over a week, but Rosa and the flagbearers informally celebrated it, considering the various circumstances of the Family.

Factors such as the absence of the corpse, the recent and significant battle, and the fact that Joshua, the next patriarch of the Family, was incarcerated.

A more turbulent and sunken stream flowed in the Garden of Swords than ever before.

"It feels uncomfortable..."

"Yes, it does."

Daytona and Haytona.

The two took shelter under the eaves of the shed to avoid the suddenly pouring rain and smoked cigarettes.

Naturally, some of the flagbearers gathered there.

It wasn't to avoid the rain or because of the Tona brothers.

Because beyond the eaves, a woman was kneeling in front of Joshua's private quarters.

She was Ilina Runcandel, whom the brothers knew as Joshua's wife.

She was recognized as Joshua's wife, but she had no real authority, and her position within the Family had become ambiguous, preventing her from participating in Jane's ceremony.

People thought that the reason she came out of the private quarters and kneeled was not to honor Jane in this way but to make some kind of plea, perhaps begging for her husband's release.

"I understand her feeling, but it might have been better to stay inside."

Ran shrugged and spoke.

Vigo nodded.

"There must be a reason Mother decided to leave her in that state. Leave her alone; she'll stop when she realizes it's futile, and she might end up dying like that."

Dyfus thought that the fact that Rosa didn't stop Ilina's actions was ultimately because it provided the slightest justification for Joshua's reinstatement.

And the two who knew his identity, Myu and Anne, had indifferent expressions.

Jin was more focused on Myu and Anne than on Ilina.

'Their behavior has strangely changed...'

If they were Myu and Anne, he knew.

Naturally, they should be showing signs of anxiety because they couldn't be sure that Joshua would be reinstated just like him and Dyfus.

'Did Mother inform Myu and Anne about the fact that Joshua might be reinstated again?

'No, Mother wouldn't need their or others' help.'

Now, it didn't seem like Myu and Anne had any hidden power or will, but for some reason, it didn't feel right.

'Are they just determined, or is there something more?'

It felt like looking at someone other than Myu and Anne.

"Elder brothers Ran and Vigo. Let's talk."

"Us?"

"Yes."

"About what?"

"Is it going to end like this? Even the lower-ranking flagbearers must join and take charge of a faction within the Family. Otherwise, we'll be purged if someone else takes the throne later."

Myu spoke without hesitation, though Jin and Dyfus were listening.

"Myu, Anne. Who says someone will kill you? No matter which of the younger Flagbearers ascends to the throne, I don't think that will happen."

"If the youngest takes the throne, it seems our heads will roll that day, Elder Brother Dyfus."

"Oh, you might end up dead by Mary's hand if you keep acting this wicked. The Family is in this state, and you're still only concerned about your own survival? Fulfill your duties in your positions. When are you going to become a responsible person?"

Upon hearing that, Myu and Anne let out a bitter laugh.

"...It seems becoming a person is a lost cause now."

"Ran and Vigo, if you intend to speak, don't hesitate to come to my room whenever you want."

After Myu and Anne left, Petro sought out Jin.

"Young Master, the acting matriarch is looking for you."

Then Dyfus nodded as if he knew what was coming.

"Take care, Jin."

"Yes, Elder Brother."

The reason Jin and Dyfus showed this reaction was that Jin had not yet handed over to Rosa some battleship and machinery blueprints obtained from the armored vault of the Second Magic Tower.

Jin followed Petro.

Rosa awaited him in the central training ground.

The training ground had not been fully restored yet after Jin's patriarchal declaration.

The rain ceased along the way.

"Have you come?"

"Yes."

For a moment, mother and son looked at each other in silence.

"Last night, the Prophet sent me a message."

Rosa spoke first about that, not the blueprints and the machine.

A message?

'Wasn't Mother in direct contact with the Prophet?

-The Mother will never give up the Prophet's power. The reason she brought Joshua this time... could be a warning to the Prophet. It's very possible if the relationship between the mother and the Prophet is not as close as that of Joshua.

-So, what you're saying is that Mother plans to bind the Prophet, and later blame her for everything and reinstate Joshua?

A conversation Jin had with Dyfus not long ago.

As Jin suspected at that time, Rosa had never communicated directly with the prophet.

They had seen each other before, but she still didn't know Ilina's true identity.

It wasn't because Rosa lacked the ability; it was simply because the divine power of the prophet was that exceptional.

"What was the message?"

"She claims to have the ability to interpret and perfect unfinished blueprints to create a fleet."

Jin hadn't delivered the items yet, but during the report, he informed Rosa that the blueprints were encrypted with magical codes, making them impossible to decipher with Runcandel's current technological capabilities.

It was natural that, unlike general blueprints, the blueprints for mass-produced battleships could not be deciphered or copied by anyone.

And it was impossible to even guess the use and identity of the obtained "machine."

"She also mentioned that she knows the purpose of the 'machine.' She says it's an item that can change the course of future wars..."

"Acting matriarch."

"Speak."

"Do you know what the catalyst for the Prophet's power is?"

"Living humans."

Rosa's voice contained no remorse or shame.

"The infiltration tunnels and spells used in this mission, and the information related to the key to the Second Magic Tower, were all obtained by the Prophet using humans as materials. She used prisoners from Rikalton."

It was the tower of living beings that Dox had seen in Rikalton.

The Prophet used those humans as material for Joshua's mission in the Sota Desert.

"I sent one of the Family's Black Knights to Rikalton. However, he didn't return even after the deadline passed, and when I went there personally, all that was left were the bones of at least an estimated ten thousand humans. Maybe there were also bones of innocents."

Jin had also sent Dox to the same place, and he had not yet received any reports from him.

And when Dox was in imminent danger of death, it was a Black Knight sent by Rosa who came to his aid.

"The Black Knight hasn't returned yet?"

"No."

"You already knew that the Prophet was using humans, so why did you send the Black Knight to Rikalton? What were you trying to confirm? Did you dismiss the possibility that the Prophet would harm the Black Knight?"

"I don't have to answer all your questions. I haven't called you here to explain everything to you. If you don't like my judgment and actions, prove me wrong and move forward. You sound very uncharacteristic of yourself. If I seem despicable to you, that only shows that you fear me."

Jin calmed his boiling blood.

As Rosa said, she wasn't in a position to answer all of Jin's questions.

"Originally, I planned to use those items with the help of the Prophet."

If Joshua had shown signs of awakening, Rosa would have handed over the blueprints and the machine to the Prophet without hesitation.

She didn't entirely trust the Prophet, but she was certain that all her actions revolved around "Joshua Runcandel."

If someone had confronted the Prophet's absolute prophecy even once, they would inevitably have been convinced.

"But this time, I changed my mind by suspending Joshua from his position as Flagbearer. I'll postpone negotiations with the Prophet. During that period, show me that you have a method superior to the Prophet's."

Histor.

And the record magic of Histor.

When the constant mission of finding "Aria Owlheart" was entrusted to the Flagbearer, as Joshua foresaw, Rosa already thought that Jin was in contact with the survivor of Hister.

"If I fail, you... will hand them over to the Prophet. Is that what you're saying?"

"That's right."

"Even if I fail, those things won't go to the Prophet."

"If you fail and don't hand them over to the Family, I'll take them by force."

"What the Family seeks is domination, not immorality. Accepting and actively using the Prophet's power is an act that goes beyond the line. You speak as if you're affected by some kind of curse or something."

"You must have learned a lot about enemies in the Sota Desert. However, you speak like a spoiled child. Listen well, Jin Runcandel, my youngest son."

For me, the survival and prosperity of Runcandel are more important values than anything else.

Nothing can surpass those values.

"Even if tens of billions of humans die in the process of achieving it, even if the world is destroyed in the struggle, and what remains in it are only a few members of Runcandel. I don't care."

"If that's the case, then what I have to do is destroy you as always, Mother."

"I look forward to it."

Jin turned around and left the training ground.

Rosa remained alone in the training ground for a long time, even after Jin left.

-

(Up to '120' more ch4pt3rs)
Publication of up to 6 w33kly ch4pters, thanks.

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