Novel Name : A Saint who was Adopted by the Grand Duke

A Saint who was Adopted by the Grand Duke - Chapter 48

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Please, anyone, let me out of here. Priest… you realize who I am, right? I’m the real saint! It’s not Rabienne, it’s me!」
「How noisy. Our temple only has one saint, and that is Rabienne. You must have truly gone insane.」
The image of her being denied.
「Why? Do you feel wronged? There’s nothing for you to feel wronged about. People would laugh at you anyway, even if you were the rightful saint. Kick. This is the price for maintaining the saint’s abilities and not knowing your place.」
The way she had been abysmally abused by Rabienne.
Tears flowed from Cespia’s eyes as she witnessed every single moment of Esther’s pain.
“Oh… God… This is really… It’s so terrible.”
Cespia pulled away from Esther, terribly distressed.
She was too sickly to endure both the painful memories and burning emotions emitting from the young girl.
“I’m so sorry. I had no idea. I’m sorry I couldn’t protect you. How hard it must have been to be alone. How painful it must have been…”
Cespia couldn’t conceal her remorse, feeling disheartened at how suffocated and confined Esther had been all this time.
Esther forcibly pressed down her overwhelming emotions. The person she should hear an apology from was Rabienne, not the saint.
Of course, there was that time she had blamed Cespia. Because of her revelation, Rabienne effortlessly discovered her.
However, Cespia was also a victim of Rabienne’s, thus her resentment, like snow, melted away easily.
“The saint has nothing to do with that. I believe you had no idea. So please don’t feel guilty.”
“You and I, we ended up being used by the temple.”
Cespia was soon shocked by the fact that the temple was more hideous than she could even imagine.
It was terrible to even think of locking up the real saint while placing Rabienne in front, although they knew the truth.
“What are you going to do now?”
“I don’t know. I’m very confused. I just wished to meet the Holy Saint and… I thought we would be able to clear things up. Everything is just so confusing.”
“The best thing is to forget about all of this and continue living your life.”
After Esther managed to understand Cespia’s words, she burst out laughing.
Those weren’t memories that could be easily forgotten and erased with mere words.
As Esther’s raging emotions got the better of her, Cespia patted her on the back to indicate she completely understood her situation.
“They are memories you can’t possibly forget. There is no need to force yourself. So, if you can’t do so until the end…”
Cespia’s eyes flashed.
Her eyes shone brightly as they reflected those who looked down upon her all this time, standing at the peak of power.
“Demolish the temple.”
Esther’s mouth slowly widened at the assertion the current saint had just uttered.
“You can do so. This temple is already rotten to the core. They cannot be corrected any longer, and I will soon not be in this world.”
Cespia spoke in a dark tone that displayed rage and annoyance; it felt like it could destroy everything.
“We have no other way but to burn the roots.”
“I also think so.”
Esther was stunned by Cespia’s idea, but she also thought the same; destroying the temple.
“Yes. You are a very intelligent child. Why couldn’t I do anything? I regret not being capable enough to leave this dull place.”
Cespia trembled as she raised her hand to brush Esther’s cheek. Her palms were dry and rigid.
“As you can see, I don’t have much time left. A few months at best? Rabienne has already been chosen as the next candidate.”
Esther flinched as she clutched Cespia’s hand.
Being a prospective saint meant preparations for the transfer of the temple’s power were already in full swing.
“Aren’t you still the Saint?”
“What’s the use of that now?”
Cespia’s eyelashes trembled thinly.
“As long as I’m alive, It will be fine, however, after I die, a revelation about you will be reflected in the high priests’ prayers. Then, the temple would, at any cost, find you.”
Esther had expected as much.
She nodded quietly. Cespia applied much more strength to her hand as she held Esther’s.
“Become strong before that. Join hands with the Imperial family.”
“Imperial… family?”
“Yes, use the background of your current house. If you strengthen your power like so, there will be no difficulty in capturing the Emperor’s favour. The Emperor wishes to destroy the temple more than anyone else.”
Esther swept away from her complicated thoughts and organized them bit by bit.
Joining hands with the Emperor was an idea she had never thought of.
However, before she could ponder any more, Esther heard the doorknob turning. Paras Shin seemed to be entering.
Esther and Cespia hurriedly wrapped up their conversation.
“Unfortunately, that is all. I was pleased to meet you.”
“Esther. No, Diana… I apologize once again.”
After Paras entered the room, her hushed voice ceased altogether.
Cespia returned to being how Esther had first witnessed her. Not a trace of her regaining consciousness was found.
“We don’t have much time. We have to hurry. Are you finished?”
“Wait a minute.”
Esther quickly finished the remainder of the painting. It didn’t take long, as she had already sketched the essential features.
“It’s done.”
“Yes, let’s leave now.”
Esther glanced at Cespia as she arranged her tools.
‘It will be difficult to see you again.’
Seeing the saint didn’t have much time left, it would be hard to meet her once more.
Esther handed over the painting to Paras, praying for her to leave this world peacefully.
“It is a completed version.”
“Oh! How did you recreate her old self? It’s completely different from the way she seems now… This is the old Cespia!”
Paras trembled in excitement.
It was drawn like that because Esther recalled the original appearance of Cespia. However, Paras, not knowing this fact, could only be overcome with fascination.
“It’s a fortunate thing I sought for you. This will remain a treasure for me. Thank you very much. We will be returning now. I’ll be sure to thank you later.”
Before Esther set foot outside the room, she glanced back at Cespia for one last time. She felt as though she were leaving her abandoned and alone in such a large room.
“Are you alright? Did anything happen?”
“Yes, what about you, brother?”
“I’m also fine.”
Victor ran to greet Esther as they left the room.
The two returned, once again covering their faces with hoods.
As they left the palace, it had already become quite bright outside. It was also time to open the main gate.
“You’ve had a hard time coming all this way. I will take you to the front entrance.”
It was already stated in advance they would each go their separate ways when returning to the estate.
Esther decided to have Paras accompany them to the main gate while calmly following from behind. However, as soon as they turned a corner, a group of people suddenly appeared.
As soon as Esther witnessed the group, she was so taken aback her steps almost stopped. This was because of the person leading the group.
Rabienne, the very person she didn’t wish to meet the most, was approaching her way.
Esther ducked as deeply as she could to conceal herself behind Paras.
Rabienne, on the other hand, carried a bowl filled with medicine between her hands. Their paths seemed to overlap because her destination was the Saint’s room.
As their distance got closer, Rabienne’s image also seemed more clear. Although Esther was meeting her after a long time, it seemed so definite, as if she had seen her just yesterday.
“Oh, isn’t that the new Priest, Paras?”
Unexpectedly, Rabienne seemed to recognize Paras well.
Esther wondered how she knew of Priest Paras Shin, a person who resided in a temple that wasn’t hers. However, she also comprehended how social Rabienne was.
“It has been a long time, Lady Rabienne. I heard you’ve become a prospective candidate. Congratulations.”
Paras pretended to be delighted and sneaked the painting behind him. Fortunately, Rabienne didn’t pay much attention to it either.
“Thank you. You must have come to see the Holy Lady.”
“Yes, but… she couldn’t recognize me, so I left.”
It seems as if meeting the Saint wasn’t strange. Esther’s curiosity grew regarding their relationship.
“Yes, she has become worse lately. That is why I am putting in twice the medications; once in the morning and evening.”
“Please take care of the Holy Lady until the end.”
“I’ll try my utmost best.”
Rabienne’s voice was filled with sadness. It also contained pureness that anyone would fall for.
“Nonetheless, who might be behind you?”
Rabienne showed keen interest in Esther. She, on the other hand, could feel her constantly gazing at her even with their far-away distance.
“Oh, this is one of my servants. This is a kid I bought a few days ago from the market.”
“I see.”
Rabienne tilted her head and soon moved away.
Only then could Esther breathe a sigh of relief. Rabienne suddenly stopped walking and turned around.
“Priest Paras, please wait a moment.”
Paras turned his head while Esther looked straight ahead, her body stiff.
“She seems familiar. Speaking of that… would you mind removing the hood covering your face?”
“Yes? There’s no need. This is a mere child I bought from the market a few days before.”
Fortunately, Paras explained Esther’s condition before things could escalate further.
She secretly snuck in, so if she was caught, there would be trouble.
“Hmm. The eye color was briefly familiar… no, I don’t think that’s it. I guess I was a bit sensitive. Please return safely.”
Rabienne let go of her suspicions as she chatted politely with Paras.
Only after confirming that she had completely disappeared did Esther take a breath that she had long endured.
“Do you happen to be acquainted with Lady Rabienne?”
“Lady Rabienne? No. I’ve never seen her before.”
Paras chose to believe in Esther’s stiff remarks.
The Tersia residence would have difficulty getting to such a place, so he believed Rabienne must have confused Esther with someone other than her.
Esther’s steps accelerated when she finally caught a glimpse of the main gate. She wished to leave the temple as soon as possible.
“It is time to bid you farewell. I wish to pay you even more, please let me know anything you are in need of.”
“That’s alright. It’s enough you treated my brother well.”
“Is that right? Then, if you need anything later, please come to the temple.”
“Yes, Priest.”
After a short exchange of greetings, Paras headed back the way he had come, claiming he had business to attend to.
Esther stood, feeling more at ease. However, her eyes soon widened as she caught sight of something unpleasant.
‘Oh my God.’
Khalid was the knight positioned to guard the entrance for today’s duty.
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