Parallel Memory - Chapter 382
As Zero flew away from the Cathedral with Saintess Amelia and the unconscious Adeline, the blizzard storm he had conjured continued to hinder their pursuers. Amelia focused on healing Zero’s injuries, her hands glowing with a soft, warm light as she channeled her healing magic.
“Zero, what should we do now?” Amelia asked, her voice filled with worry. “Cardinal Hildred’s threat… I can’t let innocent people die because of me.”
Zero, still in pain but recovering, replied, “We need to find a safe place to hide. I know how to make everyone normal.”
As they continued to fly, they found a secluded house on the outskirts of Sanctum Aurea. Zero didn’t want to go further in case Cardinal Hildred kept some guard at the border. Additionally, his mana was running low with him using Dual Art and Frostwing, plus the large-scale Blizzard Storm.
Zero carefully landed, ensuring Adeline and Amelia were safe. They decided to use this house as their temporary hideout. Zero was not worried about the owner coming and kicking them out as he suspects that the owner is mostly likely mind-controlled by the Cardinal.
Inside the house, Amelia continued to heal Zero while he thought about their next move.
( The scenario of the Sanctum Aurea is just like the scene where Hiro finds that the entire army that he was assigned to had been turned into Devil’s slaves. )
Zero thought. He knew about the artifact that Cardinal had probably used was the ‘Nexus Scepter’.
The Nexus Scepter is a powerful artifact of Rank-S+, capable of influencing even Rank-S people’s minds. Legends speak of it being created by an ancient civilization for the emperor who made everyone obey him with the artifact.
Anyway, Zero believed that Cardinal had used that artifact. With this one fact was revealed that Cardinal was indeed working for the Devils. In the novel, the same artifact would be operated by the Devils.
( But why did I get exempted from mind control? )
Zero thought. Typically, even Rank-S Holy Knights were not spared from being mind-controlled by the artifact, despite that he was okay.
In the novel, Hiro is only spared because he would be away from his team due to chasing after one Devil. So, he gets out of range and does not get affected. But he was different. He was there when everyone got their mind controlled.
( No, not only me? )
Zero turned to Saintess Amelia. Even she was not mind-controlled, he thought. If Cardinal Hildred’s objective was to capture or kill Saintess Amelia then she would actually target Saintess Amelia to be mind-controlled.
However, she was not affected by the artifact. Zero thought about what was the problem and also thought about specific information about the artifact in the novel.
( Ah! I got it! )
Zero was deeply in thought about the Nexus Scepter and why Amelia and he were not affected. Then he got the answer.
( In the novel, it is said that the artifact does not work on Devils and Devil Contractors. Therefore, when Hiro manages to subdue the Devil and get the artifact, he destroys it rather than keeping it with him. )
That means the Nexus Scepter probably uses Dark Energy in some form to control an individual’s mind. Since Devils and Devil Contractors could control Dark Energy, they are not that affected by the Nexus Scepter.
As for why Saintess Amelia is okay, it must be because of the opposite reason. Her being is made up of Pure Holy Energy. It is impossible for Dark Energy to have any kind of interference with Saintess. In front of Saintess, Dark Energy is mostly useless. Which is why her power could weaken Devils who are made up of Dark Energy.
It was all an assumption but that was most likely the case. Zero believed that his conclusion made sense and it is also backed by the information from the novel.
But now the next question was what to do. Zero thought about possible plans of which one was to have Nexus Scepter under his control.
However, it would be difficult as he knew that to get Cardinal Hildred, he had to first defeat the two Rank-S Holy Knights. Then the other plan would be to destroy the artifact like Hiro did in the novel.
But that was the problem. He didn’t know where it was. And he couldn’t do what Hiro did in the novel.
In the novel, he would defeat the owner and then force him to reveal the location. That is something that he couldn’t do.
That meant that his only option was to search for the location of the Nexus Scepter. However, he didn’t have much time, as Cardinal Hildred told him she would kill the people if Saintess Amelia didn’t show up.
And looking at the Saintess’ attitude, he knew that she would not let that happen. So he got less than 24 hours to search for that artifact and then destroy it.
Zero’s mind raced as he considered his options. He knew that time was of the essence, and he couldn’t afford to waste any more time. He needed to come up with a plan quickly to locate and destroy the Nexus Scepter before Cardinal Hildred carried out her threat.
“Amelia, I am okay!”
Zero told Saintess Amelia who was still using her healing spell.
“A-are you really fine?”
Saintess Amelia asked. There were still traces of worry and concern in her voice as she looked at Zero with a mixture of relief and skepticism.
“Yes, I’m fine now. Thank you for your healing,” Zero assured her, offering her a reassuring smile.
“Anyway, can you see whether you can heal Adeline?”
One of the reasons why Zero brought Adeline was to check whether Saintess Amelia could heal her. If she could, that means that Zero could slowly recover the mind of Zain and other Holy Knights.
However, that plan was obviously scrapped as he didn’t have the time to deal with Cardinal’s threat. But he still wanted Amelia to try and heal Adeline.
If she recovers her mind, then he will gain a bodyguard for Saintess Amelia. In that case, he would be able to go alone to find the Nexus Scepter.
Saintess Amelia nodded.
[ “Luminescent Aurorisea” ]
Amelia chanted a healing spell, her holy energy glowing brightly as she focused her power on Adeline.
After a few moments, Adeline stirred, her eyes fluttering open. She looked around in confusion before her gaze landed on Zero and Amelia.
“What happened, Saintess?”
Adeline asked, her voice weak but clear. Her mind was blank and she couldn’t remember anything properly.
“Let me explain!”