The direction we took gave us a view of the left side of the inn, we could see the small alley behind the inn and the impassive expression that I maintained on the way here couldn't help but crack.
"...No wonder Lady Cassandra called me to this place, there's a line you shouldn't cross you motherfuckers." I turned to the knights, their dark expressions indicating their shock and fury, and said, "Subdue them, they don't deserve to die so quickly. I'll decide how long they have to live before I give them a knife to slit their own throats."
The moment they were given permission, they all sprang into action. Even for these experienced men and women, the scene before them was a hard pill to swallow.
Even though I hadn't run here, I was already sweating and out of breath from speed-walking the entire way. I don't think I could have gotten here much faster even if I ran due to my stamina, but... "but I wish we got here a little sooner." I mumbled to myself in resignation.
A few shouts of anger were heard but the skilled knights took them down in moments, I'm sure that it wasn't even necessary for them to use their weapons.
The main perpetrator was well dressed with high-quality armour with a sword and kite shield, but he was so high he almost drop the sword on his foot. Against the wall of the inn, a dozen or so children in rags were huddled together, the best of the bruises on them were a horrific shade of purple. It was proof of their struggle against the crime occurring before them.
The victim was moving, but sluggishly to the point that they didn't have to do much to hold her down. I couldn't help but worry she was too injured to fight back. The other three men were much less impressive to look at, old ragged leather and a few old daggers and blades were all they had.
Their pants were around their legs as they waited for their turn after the more extravagantly dressed leader, their smug expressions as they waved their members in the face of children were asking for a fucking beating. It was clear they weren't the instigators since nobody would dare make a move on a nun in any human or dwarven city.
Churches held a lot of sway in people's hearts, mostly because of the church's transparency in this world. Each church would have a certain limit for the number of paladins and holy knights, most of their finances are public (unless it's something particularly confidential) and above all, their healing services were rather fair and they didn't force their beliefs.
A church isn't powerful enough to influence politics and had a limited amount of power in commerce, yet they were in a position where they didn't fear any royal authority either. This is because a country is nothing without its people and they are the people's belief and pillar of trust, anyone who harmed the churches maliciously would have the world against them.
Since that's the case, how could these street trash ever think about harming a nun of a publicly recognised church? The only answer would be that they had someone backing them, who just so happened to be getting doused in freezing water to wake him up.
A group of angry and traumatised children sat there, cheering the knights who were apprehending those men. The group of four were surrounding a woman in a nun uniform and from the glassy eyes and abnormal flush on her cheeks, I was sure that she had been drugged.
What was even more disgusting was the abused corpse of another nun and one of the children at the side. The nun herself didn't look a day over 20 and was at the peak of her youth, but her twisted neck and blank look of resignation made me imagine just what she must have felt as she drew her last breath.
She would never know that the other children were saved, that her body would be put to proper rest, that her prayers were answered and her fellow sister managed to survive. But before my irritation could grow further, I remembered what kind of world I was in, 'Lady Cassandra, if you can, tell her we will properly bury both her and the child. Tell her the others are safe.'
I walked forward and watched the female of the two mages sort out the dead nun and child's bodies. She cleansed them with water magic and wrapped their bodies in a cloak she took from the knights, she bit her lip and the fury in her eye's made me pause. "Do these trash think that we and the civil knights don't exist?!"
I winced when heard a crack followed by a shriek of pain, the female mage was someone with a pleasant face and middle-length, brown hair. Her approachable appearance made it hard to imagine that she would walk up to one of the rapists and accentuate her sentence by crushing his hand.
In this city, the churches would from time to time allow the nuns and pastors to go to the slums and collect some orphans or children whose parents were too poor to raise and take them in. They would be educated and given options of certain jobs after 4 years of study; all nuns and pastors would have a holy knight or holy squire to protect them. Even without that, nobody was crazy enough to attack someone who was doing missionary work in the church's name, or else they would be hunted by the whole world.
The real cause of hatred was the rapist whose hand was crushed, this fucker was the holy knight assigned to protect the two nuns!
"Fuck! Even if you gits arresht me, do you shink ur wurds hold more cregibilidy compared chu a twu Holy Knight wiv oyal blodj!" He struggled to get free but it was clear that he was in a completely addled state, 'did this dumbass use drugs on himself to get high too? It's a miracle he didn't stab himself when he tried to fight back.'
The man was tall and wiry, his refined features and accessories indicated he was from a well-off family while his armour that was lined with sunny gold and the emblem of a burning torch made it clear he was classed as a Holy Knight.
'If he was related to the royal family, his family must be a Count at least, right?' My thoughts were nonchalant because, no matter how impressive his family is, can they be more credible than a deity's Blessed Champion?
A blast of healing magic helped clear his mind so I could at least understand what the fuck he was saying.
"I really don't get it, as someone of such a high status and position, there are few women you can't have. From what I know, there are also few churches that forbid sexual relationships and yours isn't one of them... what were you trying to accomplish here?" The other three were too terrified to make a move, their untrained bodies and low levels indicated that they were just thugs.
Arrogant blue eyes turned to me and said, "Who's family bitch are you?"
To his disappointment, while the knight holding him down tightened his grip in retaliation, there wasn't a single change in my expression. At most, I raised my eyebrow in interest when I heard myself being called a bitch...I mean, I'm not even a woman so what's there to be so offended by?... is that sexist?
"So not only are you a drug dealer and a rapist, but you're also a dumbass that can't reply to a question. Speaking of bitches, maybe treating you like a dog will have better results? All right, every time he doesn't answer a question, send a small Spark to his balls." Spark was the basics of the basics for lightning magic and most high-levelled mages could use it even if lightning wasn't their speciality.
He was indeed a Holy Knight, even a crushed hand was overcome after screaming in pain once, his vicious gaze held confidence in his position. I got the feeling he doubted we would really do it so I decided to train this dog to know its place first, "Is this the first time you've attacked the nuns or other church-woman?"
"I must admit, it's rare to see a face as delicate yet empowering as yours. Which noble kept you as his toy? Knights of this level are hard to f- AAAARRRRGGGHHHH!" He twisted and spasmed as sparks of electricity hit him where the sun doesn't shine.
"He, he- umm, He said that Sister Thea was embarrassing the Herbal Mother because of her healing magic used on the nobles." I turned to the voice and saw a boy around the age of 8 or 9, the bruises on his body had already turned purple with an alarming shade of sickly blue. His voice quavered when the dog glared at him but he didn't look away or stop talking.
"Thank you for telling me young man, that was very courageous of you. Go to that lady over there, she can help you so it doesn't hurt anymore." His injuries were severe enough that he had trouble walking, the free knights helped him move and organised the other kids based on the severity of their injuries.
"Now, all we need to know is if you moved on this 'Herbal Mother's' orders or you were just using this chance for your own interests. Hmmm, and both probabilities indicate a chance that the church has some rotten apples... I just hope it's not the tree itself that's rotting." I thought out loud as I looked at him, his face twisting as he realised he was not as in control of this situation as he first thought.
I looked around, a few hidden eyes were looking our way and even some inn guests were peering through the windows. It was best we move somewhere we can talk while avoiding people seeing the nun's face and spreading what happened here today.