Chapter 26: The Pitiful Holy Knights (RT)
“15 years ago, when I was still working hard in the Basic Warrior Academy, I was the pride of my parents and teachers. Whenever the villagers in my hometown see me, they would lament ‘why are the children of other families so outstanding’.”
“When I was 10, I had already grasped over 10 types of basic fighting techniques and had successfully advanced to the Iron-rank. I became the pride of the school, the future hero. I was always surrounded by my cute female juniors. Walking around in school, I would always ‘accidentally’ display my genius…”
“‘That genius from B class? He has only managed to grasp the concept of consecutive counterattack, right? If he were to continue working hard for another 10 years, he might have half of my current standards.’ Casually criticising those idiots without talent, I enjoyed the look of admiration and praises from my cute female juniors. I thought that my life would continue on like this until the end of time, that when I grow up, I would become a great hero and marry a rich woman. Until that day…”
“‘Talent for Divine Arts? The notification for the qualification of Academy of Holy Light? To be able to become a noble Holy Knight, I’ll go, I’ll go!’”
The me then had been looking forward to become that golden shining Holy Knight. When I was overjoyed upon receiving the notification of my qualification, I seemed to have ignored the worried looks on my parent’s face,”
“Noble Holy Knight? It seems like a bright future but in reality, it is just the start of a nightmare…”
“Graduation equals to unemployment? How can this be, I am the genius Knight of the Academy of Holy Knights that appears only once a decade!! Look at my Holy Light!! Look at my Noble Charge!!”
“I’m sorry, we are all devoted believers in the Holy Light. What we need are talents who can help to spread our preaching and not violent warriors who can only fight and kill. Our department should only consist of 12 people but now it is exploding with 24 people. Everyone here has graduated from the Academy of Holy Knight and going by logic, they are all your seniors. So, why should they give their place to you?”
“I… Then I’ll go and become a free adventurer.”
“I’m sorry, as a Holy Knight, you have a responsibility to use your strength to repay your gratitude to the Church of Holy Light. The 7th Holy Church is lacking a volunteer to clean the altar and the toilets… However, volunteers aren’t given wages but the Holy Light will pay you for your hard work. Don’t worry, you don’t have to do it for too long. 3 years will pass in a flash.”
I still remember the gaze of the old Priest when he turned around to look at me. “Boy, you’re a newcomer? I here have been working here for 20 years old, tolerating everything to the point that my hair has turned white before I managed to get back on the path. Enjoy doing the job, you snotty brat.”
“I… I will go and be a free adventurer, that should be accepted right!!”
Of course it is accepted but I didn’t expect that it would be the start of the true nightmare…
3 years later, I finally became a free adventurer. Why is it 3 years later? If you don’t want to end up get chased about by the Holy Church, how can you skip the 3 years of volunteer work…
Alright, looking at how my juniors have become veterans and the core of their adventuring team, I felt sentimental and sighs. Even so, I didn't feel discouraged because I am confident that with my Silver-rank abilities, I would soon become the star in the eyes of the crowd.
But very soon, the cruel reality clubs my head with a mace.
“You don’t want? Why, as a silver-rank Holy Knight, I am willing to join your team of of Bronze-ranks. You should be happy about it. Or is it that… is it because I am a Holy Knight again?”
The thief standing opposite to me nods his head.
“Holy Knights speak too much nonsense and have too much canons to follow by. Can you tolerate having Undeads and Half-Demons as your comrades? Can you socialize with gray organisations and can you remain quiet when we are splitting up our trophies of war? As adventurers, we have to do dirty things most of the time. Can you ensure that you won’t hinder us and listen obediently to our orders?”
Of course not! The Holy Church has clearly stated that all missing items have to be returned to their owners. If you can’t find their owners, then they must be handed to officials. How can they be split among us as trophies of war! As for Undead and Half-Demons? The evil Chaos! I will never stand on the smell the same air as you lot!
Alright… Since our paths are different, we shouldn’t walk together. Since you don’t allow me to join your party, then I will just have to organize my own…
The process of building a team is still quite successful. There a bunch of Holy Knights and Priests who were unable to find a party willing to accept them in the Adventurer’s Guild and the taverns. Soon, our ‘Let Light Shine Upon The World’ band started on our adventure.
“What does not being able to accept compensation means? Does it mean we can only starve?”
“Didn’t your teacher teach you about it when you came out to adventure? We are all Knights who serve the Holy Light and the public. The adventures of a Holy Knight can only be considered as a journey to accumulate experience. Helping citizens in need is our duty and since it is a duty, how can we accept compensation?”
“If we can’t earn any money, then screw being an adventurer! Do we just starve to death!!”
That senior secretly smiles at us. Indeed, he has an idea and this is how the previous Holy Knight adventurers don’t starve to death.
Although we can’t accept compensations, if we accept it as a form of donation to the Holy Church, we are able keep a third of it as a token of their appreciation, but…
“Since it is a donation, then we can’t squabble over its amount. But, getting a bronze coin after getting rid of an entire tribe of Ogres, I can only barely buy 2 black breads with it. It isn’t enough for me to buy medicine! Right, I still have to donate two-thirds of it to the Church…”
“This is still okay. You probably haven’t met with the requests from the Gnomes yet, that is the one that really breaks one’s back.”
“We can’t fuss over how much other people donate and even more so, we can’t even complain whether the person is donating or not and what he donates… If we meet a stingy Gnome, it is still fine if he refuses to donate. If he were to donate half a ton of heavy rock, you would have to cut it into 3 pieces and submit 2 of it up as tax… As a senior, allow me to warn you in advance, if the Gnomes were to give you a machinery that looks not bad, even though if it is against the teachings of the Church, you must dispose of it as soon as possible. If he isn't using you as a lab rat to experiment his tools which would explode sooner or later, then the thing he is passing you must be a real bomb, of which he is also using you as a lab rat.”
“Right, be careful of Mermen as well. The last time we helped the Mermen to clear up the coast, they donated a bunch of smelly mud fish. Under the hot sun, it started to stink halfway through our journey. That stench could be smelled even 10 miles away… I had to bathe under the waterfall for three days straight. I still remember the looks of despise those Priestesses shot me with when they were collecting the donations, as though they were looking at something dirty.”
The additional information from my Priest companion was hilarious, but I couldn’t bring myself to laugh. On the other hand, I somehow felt like I was on the verge of tears.
“Also, the DemiRams, they are really screwed up. Those stingy things would actually use their fur as compensation and even worse, they went by strands!! Can you imagine the feeling of holding a bunch of goat furs in your hands and recounting them every few steps to avoid some of them falling onto the floor so that you could pay the correct amount of tax...”
“Also, as Holy Knights, all of us are poor so we shouldn't resort to scheming against one another. But, that other time, I met a…”
Swiftly, the teaching session became a complaining session for our party. As for me, I felt despair for my future as a Holy Knight.
“… At least, Holy Knights are radiant so they should be popular among women!!”
But very soon, reality swings another heavy bat at me.
“Do you have a house? A mount? Savings?”
I live in the common dormitory filled with sweaty men. Naturally, it can't be used as my home after getting married. As for mount, I do have one. But, how could I afford to raise a stallion by myself. So, I deposited it with the Church and I could only use it during times of war. During the last war, when the company selling feed for the horses sent in the receipts… As for my savings, hehe. Hello ladies. Goodbye ladies.
After taking so much blows, I finally meet with an innocent and cute lady. She doesn’t mind my poor qualifications and was willing to date me!
“Ah, how beautiful and kind she is. She is my goddess.”
But, it is bizarre that the most intense activity the both of us were ever engaged in is holding each other’s hands and strolling by the park. She would always reject me when I try to go a step further.
At that time, I was a bit curious but I held it in. After all, she is seems so pure and innocent. But, after five years passed, I was already 30 years old. I couldn't hold it in any longer so I bucked up my courage to ask.
“Ah? Aren’t Holy Knights the Knights of God? Shouldn't they be devoid of desires?”
“I XX!! We are Holy Knights, not Monks (Only a few Battle Monks would make a vow to stay away from lust)!”
So, I spent a lot more effort explaining before she managed to understand the difference between Battle Monks and Holy Knights. But, what happened afterwards was a reply that made me fall in despair.
“That… I’m sorry, I wanted to have a platonic relationship, that’s why I came to find you. I can’t agree to that. Can we still remain friends?”
“Friends?! Friends your head! I am already 30 years old!! My classmates already have dozens of children.”
That night, in that dormitory full of sweaty men, I cried in a heap of mess as my colleagues stood solemnly beside me, consoling me.
“You remember Arult? That genius Holy Knight from Lucart City?
I remember that winner in life. He has a rich and beautiful girlfriend.
“Why are you mentioning him? You don’t think that my state is pathetic enough?”
“He fell into depravity and converted into a Black Knight, becoming the claws of Chaos. That rich and beautiful girlfriend of his is actually a Demon who approached him to corrupt him…”
“How many does that make? Before this, many people in the Church already had their doubts why a good woman like her would go for a Holy Knight and warned him, but he just wouldn’t believe it. No, he probably knew it but he didn’t want to face the truth. He wanted to enjoy the blissful life a bit longer.”
“Heh, we are all numb to this already. If we take the initiative to look for girls, we would get rejected. Women who approach us on their own accord normally have a screw loose. What's worse is that the Holy Church bans us from spending money to solve our physical needs. Even relieving ourselves is a forbidden evil act…”
“We are humans! Not beasts! Just two days ago, the love affair between two Holy Knights in the West Mountains was exposed and both of them were exiled from the Church. They were my comrades and I even sent them off. But, from the looks of it, both of them are happy over the fact that they can stay together from now on… But, they are both men! They were originally normal men who likes women! If we restrain ourselves too much, something will really happen! The number of gays in the Church are increasing at a rapid rate!”
“Actually, I’ve started to think that I could reluctantly accept man…”
“Actually, I feel the same too. Why don’t we try? …”
From the sudden formation of the ‘couple’ that day, I fell into total despair and lived like a zombie…
“You want to break away from the Holy Church? Stop being a Holy Knight? You don’t have other skills to earn a livelihood with and you are already getting old. Starting afresh isn’t something easy. The only job you can convert into without losing too much fighting ability is the Black Knight. Are you sure you want to try it?”
At that moment, I felt absolute despair towards life. When I was dispatched to the dangerous Underground World, I didn’t even attempt to reject it. As long as I can stay away from the increasing number of gays by my side, what does putting myself in danger count as?
But, from there on, my life took a turn.
“Nanxiang Law School? Currently accepting students for short-term training and it comes with a job recommendation? Holy Knights don't have to undergo interview! Is this for real?”
“Give it a try, things can’t get any worse anyway.”
I didn’t hold too much hope as I entered Nanxiang. After all, my age is getting a bit on the advanced side and my capability to learn is going down.
But very quickly, I realized that the Power of Law they were imparting isn’t much too different from my Power of Holy Light. The silver Light of Law is similar to the Holy Light, a Lower Concept of the Origin of Order. Many techniques and skills are similar, making it easy to learn.
Furthermore, they really provide jobs! No, not only provide jobs. It is to the extent that an old fellow like me, who haven’t even graduated, had dozens of companies vying over me!
“Security guard, police, judge and other members of the law system. They are all respectable figures of the upper-class society! To think that an useless old man like me would have a day that I would see the onset of spring!”
“We don’t have an annoying Church or any Gods that we have to serve. We believe in the codex and we maintain justice and equality. But, at the same time, we are also humans and we need to make a living. As graduates from Nanxiang, it isn’t difficult for us to deal with criminals and villains. Even if we don’t become a police or so, we are also trusted with other jobs such as being security guards. As Justice Knights also belong to the Order faction, they cannot commit crimes and they have to follow by their vows and promises, thus making them trustworthy employees to their employers, greatly increasing their opportunities for promotions.”
That year, when my teacher was speaking passionately on the stage, I didn’t quite believe him after going through so much.
“But after that, everything changed!! Just like how that teacher described! After graduation, I got a job with a large merchant guild and I only have to chase away those weaklings who come to cause trouble at the front desk for 20 days every month and my monthly salary is actually a staggering 10 000 gold coins! It is 10 000 gold coins!! That is 200 times more than that of a Holy Knight! Furthermore, I don’t have to suffer the batter of the rain or risk my life for it!!”
“What, you are saying that a Holy Knight can also do the same? Dumbass, Holy Knights is a Knights who serve the Holy Light and the God, how can they accept employment!”
“Very quickly, after I saved sufficient money to buy myself a house, I found my loved one! I even bought a cute Dragon Horse with the bloodline of a Red Dragon. It can travel a thousand miles in a single day and spit fire. I am finally a Knight, and not a foot soldier who deposits his mount with the Church.”
“Just a while ago, I told this recent news to my old companions and they all rushed here. Now, everyone has graduated from Nanxiang. Some of them serve as a sentry for the city, some of them joined the Town Security and some of them became a judge. As for the two gay Holy Knights, after earning some money, they actually became their own bosses, married a wife each and even have their own children now!!”
“My Holy Knight brothers, come and become a Justice Knight. Ignoring the fact that you get to retain most of your strength upon changing jobs, we are all still fighting for Order. The Holy Church would surely be glad to see everyone changing jobs. After all, they don’t have much of a budget to raise all of you.”
“Which school is best at teaching the usage of the Power of Order? Come to Nanxiang in Liu Huang Mountain City of the Underground World. You can choose to pay after learning and users of Holy Light can get in without requiring an interview. The first month of your wages is treated as school fees. We have a free month-long trial for people who would like to try it out. Our motto at Nanxiang is to study hard and work hard. Power, promotions and salary will come rapidly so that you can marry a rich and beautiful wife! My mother no longer have to worry about me being unemployed and even I can become my own boss.”
“This is just an advertisement slogan? You are still worried that you are unable to find a job in the future? Let me work the math for you. Every city needs its own police and public security officers. Every enterprise needs security guards. Every government requires a legal system. There are so many job opportunities available and you, as the vanguard of law jobs and the favored one of the new era, you are actually worried that you are unable to find a job? Come to Nanxiang, we provide you everything. Graduating from the Academy of Holy Light is equal to unemployment but at Nanxiang, you can be employed even before graduating!”
The above is all the content of an advertisement flyer. The writer is the Supreme Judge of the Supreme Court of Liu Huang Mountain City Wumianzhe…
“Hey hey, aren’t you going too far? It is said that when the Archbishop of Holy Light old Bill saw the flyer, he fainted on the spot and almost died from excessive bleeding from his head!!”
Yes, I am poaching personnels from the Holy Church and I am doing it very openly.
Of course he would vomit blood. This advertisement flyer might be written by me but all of the above are very true. It is the sore spot of the entire Holy Church.
After all, I was once a Holy Knight and many of the examples were real-life… A sudden heartache made me mutter subconsciously ‘fortunately, I am no longer an unlucky Holy Knight’.
At this moment, under Adam’s questioning of whether I have went too far, I smiled.
“I don’t see anything wrong with it. When I personally passed this flyer to the Town Security, they were overjoyed!!”
Of course they were overjoyed. Previously, they were not allowed to join the legal system officially. But now, being allowed to study the Power of Law, this is also means that my legal system and the Liu Huang Mountain City have completely accepted them.
They already used their fresh blood and hardwork to prove their loyalty. If I continue to turn my back away from them, that would be too heartless.
“…You reorganized the Town Security’s Holy Knight army into a Justice Knight army? You haven’t told this news to old Bill right, I’m afraid he might be unable to hold on.”
“I told him. I even personally sent a messenger to report the news to him!”
“Lord!! You are vomiting blood again!! This is the 20th time this month! The sky is going my rain and mother is going to remarry, we can’t hold on anymore. We better return to the surface world.”
“Archbishop, bad news! Many Holy Knights and Priests, after seeing the flyer, said that they want to go to Nanxiang, we can’t stop them any longer!!”
The Archbishop of Holy Light continues vomiting blood…
Hearing Elisa’s report on the Archbishop after he receiving the news of the Town Security changing faith, he was first surprised before vomiting blood straight. Afterwards, a comedy even played out. I smiled gleefully.
“You old fool, who asked you to try to preserve your power when things were in chaos. You even tried to spread your teachings when everyone were in a state of fear after the battle. You dare to treat a lion who haven’t eaten a human in awhile as a sick cat, you deserved it!”
TL: The sky is going my rain and mother is going to remarry -> Things they can’t do anything about (i.e There is nothing they can do about the situation)