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~3rd Person Perspective~
A group of people were either practicing swordsmanship or drinking merrily, there however is someone watching the scene from a distance.
A man clad in a fine, but dark robe.
His name is Expana.
He holds a position called High Priest in an organization called the Demise Cult.
The demise cult is a group of evil cultists who dream of bringing an end to this world.
They are the ones who have taken root in various countries, stirring up the conflict between the League of Kings and the Astoria Empire, and leading them into a battle with no end in sight.
From the perspective of the inhabitants of this world, they are evil themselves, but of course, they are not aware of this.
They are simply working for the sake of their doctrine and for the sake of this world.
They are simply religious zealots.
As if to prove this, the eyes of the priestly figures around Expana were empty. They were clouded.
However, strangely, only the priest Expana was different.
His eyes were clear and even shining.
There was something calculating about them, but they were strangely clear.
But that was only when compared to the priests, and the eyes of Expana may be clouded enough.
One of those with clouded eyes opens his mouth.
“…Priest Expana we’ve been informed that one of the High Ogres in the Bana Forest has died.” (Cultist)
Even after hearing the report, Expana did not become unhappy. On the contrary, he answered in a tone as if he knew about it beforehand.
“Don’t worry about it. It would be too easy to accomplish a great cause and not sacrifice anything.” (Expana)
“As expected of the Master. However, I had my men look into the details, and it seems that the person who killed our kinsmen was a very troublesome person…” (Cultist)
“Is it the Sage of Balance?” (Expana)
The other priest’s eyes widened at Expana’s immediate response. This information has just come in…
“The prophecy of the God of the End – I wish I could say that, but it’s a simple deduction. The Libra Division has been ordered to defeat the Titans. The Titans are fighting in the southern part of the Bana Forest. With these two pieces of information, I can foresee him appearing in the forest.” (Expana)
“As expected of the Master. You have great foresight.” (Cultist)
“I may have good sight, but I couldn’t make use of it. We should have taken action when the Libra Division was ordered to defeat them.” (Expana)
“Shall we send reinforcement to the High Ogres?” (Cultist)
“That would be a better move. It is great if the Elves and the Dolls fight each other, but for now, I want to deal with the Sage of Balance.” (Expana)
With that, the priest paid his respects to Expana once again and stepped aside. He would carry out his orders.
Another priest comes in his place.
“Master Expana, I have received a call from the Cult’s headquarters.” (Cultist)
At these words, Expana’s face contorts slightly for the first time.
“…The senile old bastards from the upper echelon.” (Expana)
He said it in a voice that was inaudible to the other priests.
“The Archbishop and his cohorts are angry at the loss of their key man, Kerich.” (Cultist)
“Their plan to make Kerich king and have him at their mercy has come to nothing.” (Expana)
“That’s right. The Archbishop wants to know how he can throw Ernia into chaos in the future.” (cultist)
The Archbishop is ill. In fact, it’s probably just the high priests beside him who want to hear it. No, he’s sure they just want to get rid of him. He thought, but he didn’t say anything.
“We may not be able to make Kerich king, but we can throw Ernia into chaos. Our goal is to lead this world into mayhem and create a new order out of chaos. Our goal is not to give the throne to Kerich.” (Expana)
“True, but then would we have to give it to his elder brother, Maxis?” (Cultist)
“I thought about that too…” (Expana)
Expana put his hand on his sharp chin but refuted it.
“Maxis’s narrow vessels could destroy Ernia, and the balance between the League of Kings and the Astoria Empire would be lost all at once, and our aspirations would not be fulfilled.” (Expana)
“…what a difficult task.” (Cultist)
“It’s not easy. Yes, it is. But I want to achieve that impossible balance at all costs.” (Expana)
“What are your thoughts?” (Cultist)
He pointed to a newspaper with a picture of the royal family.
“The current king has six children. One of them died the other day. One of them is unfit for the throne.” (Expana)
“It would be a problem if Princess Sicily has taken the throne.” (Cultist)
“Yes, she is capable and righteous, which is why she should not be allowed to take the throne. So that means—” (Expana)
Expana’s gaze is directed at royalty other than Kerich, Maxis, and Sicily.
Sicily’s two half-sisters and her half-brother. The two half-sisters had strong personalities, but their faces resembled Sicily’s. The other half-brother had the same mild and gentle personality and smile as Sicily.
“None of them had any military or political talent. Therefore, there is no one better suited to be our puppet.” (Expana)
“I see, so shall we select the next king?” (Cultist)
“That’s right. In the near future, His Highness Maxis will also fall on the battlefield. At that time, we must unify his successors so that his vassals are not confused.” (Expana)
He seems to have a clear vision of who should be the next successor.
“But we need to prepare carefully. The support of the powerful nobility and the military is essential, as well as the support of the large merchants. We want them to choose the successor that suits us without letting them feel the presence of our cult. That would be ideal.” (Expana)
“I think Master Expana can do that.” (Cultist)
“I hope so.” (Expana)
Expana sips wine on the side table.
As Leon and the others made their way through Bana Forest, the evildoers were devising such a scheme.
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