Chapter 33 – A brave front
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"...what's the matter?" The moment I arrived at the nun's room, I could feel a strange atmosphere. The stiff expressions of the two female mages who brought her back looked somewhat distasteful and a little caught off guard? I couldn't put my finger on the exact emotions but something was clearly wrong.

The hand-stomping mage stepped forward and answered, "Firstly, it was discovered the young girl who was violated was in fact alive. She was injured so badly she was at the brink of death but with the Elixer the Holy Knights kept in reserve, along with some healing magic, we managed to recover 70-80% of her injuries." I couldn't help but be amazed, the children had mentioned her and cried several times on their way to the mansion, or so I was told. Finding out she's alive would be a great boost to the mental health of the kids.

'People can be so fragile yet so tough, to live in that condition is one helluva miracle.' The head maid opened the room's door as the mage spoke with a troubled expression.

"The nun has also awoken... she's quite **** for someone who went through something like that." 

"Huh?" Again... why didn't I get the language as a starter pack?

Fortunately, most of the people I was in contact with knew I had only started to learn the language recently, the mage spoke again, "She is acting very relaxed and positive and... you'll understand when you see her."

Nun POV:

"It was really horrible wasn't it, Donna? Those smelly guys bullied us but they got caught by the knights. How about we go shopping and buy that pretty earring to celebrate those bad guys getting punished." I had to hold it in, I can't let this poor, confused girl be swept away in the horror and self-disgust of what happened. I couldn't let the uncomfortable gaze of the magician affect me or the child would notice, children are very perceptive when emotionally vulnerable.

A child with hazel, upturned eyes sat beside me in a daze while nibbling on some pastries. Her eyelashes were naturally thicker towards the end and her eyebrows were well-shaped; this gave a naturally foxy appearance that seemed to tease you with every look. 'This must have been why those- *ugh* n-no, I can't let it show in front of her.'

Children shouldn't have to be burdened any further by such horrors, I continued to speak lightly, "I also think that earing will look nice on you, how about we also get some inner garments? You're starting to grow up so you will need them."

I couldn't see much of her expression that was hidden behind her messy black hair but she was clearly interested in what I was saying, but before I could say anything else a beautiful young demoness entered. Her strong and wide steps along with her confident gaze were odd, not that confident women were new to me but rather that the atmosphere around her was different to other women, it was... more forthright? I couldn't find the words to express it, and she then spoke to me.

"It's a pleasure to meet you, my name is Lilith and I'm the Champion of the Great Cassandra of the Night Sky. I came to rescue you after my patron deity in- informed me that one of her believers was praying to her for a-umm assistance and that I was close enough to help." The words of the mesmerising young lady shook me to the core, to think that Lady Cassandra had chosen a Champion! No, if she was even able to converse with Lady Cassandra, then was she not her Blessed too?!

My shock made me ask in confirmation, "Wait! Are you truly her Champion?! Perhaps even a Blessed?"

When the demon- no, when the Champion smiled, I couldn't help but blush at how mesmerizing yet oddly intoxicating it was. She had a wildness that woman had not and yet her feminine charms were fatal, there was even a hint of sensual danger caused by her sharp eyes and light purple skin, it was hard to think of her as a child.

"Yes, I am. I have a blessing for... made for a new Taint." I was so overwhelmed by her charm and identity that I just noticed her poor Avalonian. Was she from another kingdom? Her accent was odd but pleasant to the ears, it added to her foreign charm as I have never heard of a demon like her in this city before but some parts sounded honestly funny.

It was like she had trouble conveying emotions in her words; if she wanted to sound bored she might get her vowels off and sound like she was constipated. Looks like she's very new to Avalonian but since her accent was unlike anything I had ever heard, I quite liked it.

But any interest was crushed when I realised that she must have seen me being attacked as a- she must have seen me at my worst. The dirty feeling under my skin made me grateful that I had yet to eat any food, I would have regurgitated everything otherwise.

I was so emotionally strained and bombarded with information I didn't even manage to process that a new Taint had appeared, according to the Champion.

I took a deep breath and stood up, I smiled and curtsied politely, lifting my habit ever so slightly as per etiquette. "To think I would even get to meet the Blessed Champion of our Lady! I apologise for my late introduction, my name is Althea and I'm an orphan who decided to dedicate myself to the Celestial Church, I am currently a nun who works as a member of the Church's 'Hearth of Travelers'. It is my greatest fortune to be the first of the Lady of the Night Sky's devout servants to meet you like this, I suppose something good came of this mess."

I felt my stomach drop when she frowned, she might be young but nobody could deny the charisma she emitted despite her childish appearance and approachable character. Her judgmental look hurt me in a way that none of the others ever did, she was the chosen Champion of my Lady!

'I-if even my Lady and her Champion are disappointed in me...' I looked at the poor girl, her seductive, foxy eyes which showed a vulnerability that only a child could have, 'if that is the case then so be it. I just can't let her feel like she was dirty or that she did something wrong.'

Yet no matter how much I comforted myself, I could feel my tears threatening to fall. I lowered my head and looked at the Champion's feet, unable to meet her gaze, 'I must not cry!'

Just then, the small, beautifully adorned pair of feet stepped towards me and said eight words that saved me, both as a nun and as a woman,

Lilith POV:

I wasn't sure what to make of this beautiful nun; Thea seemed more annoyed by what happened than upset. I might be from the more loo- *ahem* liberal 21st century but is that any different for a rape victim?

At first, I just felt slightly disappointed she was someone who thought so little of such things despite it sounding hypocritical of me, I was literally brought to this world to fuck horny curses out of women. But I wanted to believe she wasn't like that, there was a religious saying back on earth, 'indeed, some suspicions are unrighteous.'

I might not be religious but I never forgot those words as they resonated with me. It's never good to just assume something about someone, it's a cruel habit to pick up, I want to believe in the best of people while preparing for the worst. Therefore, I should try to instead think of why she would feel so nonchalant... a defence mechanism?

It was then that I saw it, she was shaking slightly and the tip of her fingers were turning white from gripping the habit too tightly as she curtsied. Just when I thought she would break down her eyes flitted to the girl next to her and a feeling of determination and resignation overflowed from her body. She had long lost her composure and her feelings were leaking.

I stepped forward, my heart ached when I saw her flinch. My guess is that the judgment of someone she considered the envoy of the deity she followed was much more painful than the stares of the others. 

I reached out and patted her soft, curly hair, "It must have been hard, well done Thea."