Chapter 1 - Prologue
As a Saint, Lina should be able to tell without difficulty that Seria Stern’s power of purification was not that strong. Even the priests knew that.
But if no one else can correlate the circlet with purification, and Lina is the only one who can tell about the circlet …?
“Then there’s really something there.”
After Mies told Seria about the moon, Seria spent a lot of time confined to her desk. She wrote and erased over ten hypotheses and eventually burned them all.
Among them, the one that stayed in her mind without being thrown away was : What does Lina have to do with the being who gave the oracle to Mies?
‘If so, that being must be like God….’
The name on the necklace was Stigma.
Lina was a saint.
It was just that when Seria immersed herself in it, there was a connection to everything.
How did the original circlet come to be moved to the auction house? What was the twist in Mies that made it happen?
Seria kept wondering, but this part was not something she could figure out for sure. So she tried to look at it differently. Considering that all the narratives in the original work were points for the heroine.
If the circlet would not be auctioned, it would be owned by Lina in the end. Then.
‘Could it be that Lina is the moon that Mies mentioned?’
‘I don’t know anything for sure, but ….’
Seria suddenly had a deep skepticism about the original story.
Does the novel need to be so hard? It turned out that Mies did not have a single drop of Berg’s blood, he was Berg’s illegitimate child.
The heroine was loved by the two brothers…. (Mies and Lesche)
Oh, Cassius and Nissos loved Lina too.
It was only the other day that she remembered the fact that the Princes of the Glick Imperial family were also psychological slaves with a crush on Lina.
Seria just shook off the thoughts.
“When can I go inside the mine?”
“Oh, Grand Duchess, you will be able to see it as soon as they make a quick inspection. As I said, the mine is truly blessed by God. Never before in my life have I seen a mine where the roads are so easy to make, where the reclaimed minerals are so regular, and where the veins are so straight.”
Seria followed the aide and tilted her head. Not far from the entrance, her forehead frowned weakly as she looked at the blocked dirt wall.
That was when she heard a voice. It was the other aides under Linon’s command.
“What is it?”
“They say the altar has just arrived! Where should we put it?”
“Why? Did you bring the altar here?”
Seria was taken aback by the unexpected words. That altar had been carefully brought to the vicinity of the mine by priests who were obsessed with prayer. But she was going to pray in the castle that the Duke of Polvas lent her.
Why did they bring it to the mine?
‘Do I look like a divine guardian in the eyes of the aides?’
“The Chief Aide said that in order to purify the demonic energy, you must be present…”
“So he thought I’d stay in the mine…”
Linon seemed to have said that.
‘I’d stay in the mine for a while if I’m going to fool people’s eyes.’
It was complicated to tell the aides to leave the things they had gone to so much trouble to get to return it, so he must have ordered them to prepare a place to leave it in the mine.
And so, as Seria was walking to inspect the mine again, she quickly returned to her original position, with something strange that scratched her back from earlier. Right next to the entrance of the mine, the pass led her back towards the dirt wall that was a dead end. She had been wondering about the other side for a while now.
“What is it?”
A familiar energy seemed to bloom from there.
No way–Seria didn’t have to worry about it for long. She immediately called the aide in charge of the mine. The aide rubbed his hands together.
“What can I do for you, Grand Duchess?
“Open this door.”
“Why are you suddenly asking me to open this one? The vein of the magic crystal is over there.”
“Do you have to aske? Just open it.”
“Then we’ll have to make a new entrance…. The scale of the job is getting bigger.”
“Just open it up. Or you can go to the Grand Duke and tell him you can’t do it.”
They thought that if the Grand Duchess Stern came, she would have a unique way to purify Magi. Perhaps she would have brought a series of purification tanks from the Great Temple, but that wasn’t the case. And the workers also thought that Mag was just being purified because “Stern” had arrived.
Of course, after a while, the workers would notice. They will realize that everything was purified faster than even their previous Saint’s abilities could not explain.
It was suspicious, but that was the only reason why the Grand Duchess hadn’t ordered a complete silence. It didn’t bother Seria anymore. Berg’s aides did not question beyond the set line.
They probably thought that the magi that was a few meters ahead of them had finally been cleansed as well.
‘We will all know later, though, as we slowly make our way through.’
There were a lot of workers who had just been working, so they were able to quickly clear the area that was ordered to break through by the Grand Duchess. The question was….
“Why isn’t it dark inside?”
“Are there lights?”
“It can’t be!”
There was a hand blocking the way as the workers rushed to enter.
“I’ll go first.”
It was Abigail. She had a suspicious look on her face. If there was anything in the cave, and if it was good, they could take it and run. And there was no hesitation in looking at the aides and workers with such an expression.
Abigail, who was soon inside the entrance, frowned. The workers who followed her in also looked dazed.
The cave was filled with ores that gave off a faint blue light. Thus, the cave, which should have been dark, was bright enough for them to identify. Ordinary ores were usually buried in the soil or stone in their original form, but these ores were like bricks, sticking together in a pentagonal shape with a regular pattern and emitting light.
None of the nearby workers had ever seen this kind of ore. Someone rushed over to call someone of higher rank. Abigail reached out and touched the glowing wall. It was this familiar feeling that slowly robbed her of her body heat.
It wasn’t long before Abigail came to her senses. Deep in the cave, Abigail quickly took a step back and shouted.
“Everyone, get out!”
“Grand Duchess, I have contacted His Highness and the temple.”
Seria nodded at Linon’s words. The feet were moving diligently.
“When will I hear from the temple?”
“It won’t take long. It’ll come crashing down.”
“I see. They don’t deserve to come with dignity.”
Linon gave a rare, nervous sigh. It was understandable.
Constellation Gold Mine.
It was a precious metal that could only be extracted from the mines under the Temple. A token of Stern. Iron of God. Raw materials essential to counter demons.
“Did you know that the last constellation gold mine found was a hundred years ago?”
“I’m Stern. Wouldn’t I know?”
“I went overboard.”
Linon said, still wearing his constellation gold armor. Earlier, he was running in a hurry after hearing the news that a large-scale maggi and a constellation gold mine were found in a cave that succeeded in blocking the entrance and drilling a new one. Linon followed closely, out of breath.
“Linon, stop following me and stand here.”
“I’m sorry it’s too cold to be that far away from you, Grand Duchess…”
“It’s not so cold when you’re that far away from me.”
“Could there be a mistake in the way the temple measured it?”
Shaking her head lightly, Seria told Linon to stand at the new entrance. Not wanting to leave Stern, and not wanting to see the magi again, Linon immediately stopped where he was. Seria walked into the cave, leaving Linon behind. All the workers and aides working in the mine had been handed over.
At the entrance border, Abigail was already waiting with her constellation gold armor on.
“There you are, young lady.”
Seria was suddenly embraced by Abigail. To the naked eye, there didn’t seem to be any immediate Magi contamination.
“Are you okay?”
“Of course I am.”
There was a huge amount of magi swaying inside the cave. The constellation gold minerals wrapped around the walls and ceiling, so the magi didn’t seem to affect people’s bodies. Likewise, the knights in the gold armor moved the altar and the Stern insignia and placed them inside.
“Everyone, leave. Only Bibi stays.”
“Yes, Grand Duchess.”
The knights bowed and left quickly. Seria brought the Stern insignia and the temple altar here just in case she needed an excuse to clean up this mess. Of course, it was an excuse that she didn’t mind being discovered, but still, the more cards she had in her hand, the better.
She immediately bent down in front of the altar. Then she took out the circlet on her neck and placed it on the Stern insignia in the center.
At that moment, a strong burst of divine power caused her hair to flutter back strongly. The cave in which the pitch black magi was waving disappeared in an instant. It was a relief.
“It’s done, Linon!”
“Yes, Grand Duchess!”
As soon as Seria shouted, Linon came running in from the entrance. When she instructed the workers to normalize the operation again in two days, Linon nodded immediately. He ran quickly, not taking a good look around the Constellation Gold Mine.
So that left just Seria and Abigail in this beautiful and mysterious cave.
Seria looked around the cave, finally catching her breath. As a Stern, it was the first time she had actually seen the Constellation Gold Mine in person. It was a constellation gold mineral that constantly emitted a faint blue light. It was certainly so mysterious and beautiful that she couldn’t look away.
Abigail came up to Seria and sat down on one knee.
“Are you still holding on to it?”
“Huh? There might still be magi inside.”
Seria was holding the circlet against the insignia the whole time because there might be magi in the hidden depths of the mine. Not near the insignia, but at a considerable distance. It was a fact that Seria had learned from the last time she tortured Mies. How to adjust the intensity of the divine power so that she wouldn’t get affected. This was one area where Mies was helpful.