The organisation that Belinda belonged to was obviously subordinate to the Trial's Eye. They had been preparing to act against the Nefarious Filthbird, using Port Elias as a transport point to offload a large amount of prohibited goods.
However, with Leylin cutting in, this plan was dealt a fatal blow before it could even begin.
With Leylin's disclosure of the information about their operation, the Port Elias setup had been completely exposed. All the people in charge of the different organisations were nabbed in hiding, and only Belinda had been able to escape with Leylin's protection.
For the Trial's Eye's organisation, this was an intolerable humiliation! The loss of goods and intel was something they could not bear.
Hence, Belinda's superior Bayclark had brought a huge army and hastened over, planning to destroy Port Elias in one go.
With Bayclark's strength as a rank 5, the governor who was only at rank 4 could not even resist.
Originally, everything should have gone smoothly. In the Hail Continent, the governor didn't have any support.
However, it was a huge pity that a plan was just a plan and there could always be other variables. The moment Leylin laid his eyes on Bayclark, only tragedy awaited the Beholder.
With Leylin's deliberate plans, the governor and a few higher-ups of the Nefarious Filthbird's organisation had escaped. Even the rank 5 Sacrificer, Bayclark, had turned into an offering for the Nefarious Filthbird, temporarily solving his personal issues while Bayclark's truesoul was destroyed.
Even in the Purgatory World, a rank 5 was very rare, especially one with the status of a Sacrificer. In his organisation, Bayclark had high standing and managed this region. The loss of someone like him was a huge disaster for Belinda and the others!
Though Belinda had done all she could to save the situation, and had pushed the troops in order to reach a rest point, a paradoxical situation had been unavoidable despite her best efforts, landing her in her current dilemma.
No! This couldn't be called a paradox, but a conspiracy!
When Belinda had stepped out as a leader, she immediately turned into an offering or scapegoat in the eyes of the Morning Stars.
"Why? Why did things turn out like this?" Belinda half-leant against the corner of a wall, arms hugging her shoulders as if that would bring her even the slightest bit of warmth. With her body, she wouldn't feel any cold in temperatures above absolute zero.
It had been a subconscious act. She was currently in a cold, dark, humid room. There were multiple reinforcement runes on the walls, and the door was a cold steel grill. A few marine folk surveyed her icily from not far away.
Morning Star forcefields undulated from their bodies without any restrictions, and they were clearly the marine tribe that had gone to battle together with Belinda before. Now, however, their target had changed and they even kept Belinda on house arrest.
The accusation was laughable, 'colluding with the enemy'! Belinda did feel like laughing, sending troops to Port Elias was a joint decision by the higher-ups, but they'd changed the narrative and said she'd bewitched Bayclark to do it.
Belinda's calm actions after being caught by the leader of the allied forces was also taken as proof of trying to win the support of the enemy. What other reason could she have for doing this than to collude with the enemy?
Besides, compared to the Beholder race and marine tribe that had from the very beginning believed in Trial's Eye, someone like her who was a descendant of the Alabaster Devilsnake just did not fit in. Was she not a readily available scapegoat?
It had to be said that whenever it came to suspicion of there being spies, outsiders like her were the first to be attacked.
"Belinda, are you feeling better?" A voice was heard from her side, causing her to raise her head slightly.
Through the dusky light, she saw the figure of her kinsman. After seeing who it was, a wry smile appeared at the corner of her lips, "Nick, you've been captured too?"
The shadow clone controlled by Partial AI #1 was watching Belinda 'worriedly'.
When the marine tribe had suddenly turned hostile on her, Belinda practically turned into a wooden puppet, not resisting arrest. With only the strength of a shadow clone, the partial AI also didn't dare make a move lest it was caught.
Thankfully, perhaps because they were afraid that the two would resist violent methods and cause needless deaths, they were only under house arrest. Their truesouls weren't sealed or anything like that, and they were even placed together.
[Target is now in a poor mood and in a state of bewilderment. If appropriately consoled, it is possible to improve her impression of the host.]
An analysis presented itself to the shadow clone. However, its orders were merely to prevent 'Nick' being exposed as Leylin. Without Leylin's explicit orders, emotional issues like this were the most difficult for Partial AIs to deal with. Hence, Nick merely stood around in a daze, as if similarly shocked.
"I'm- I'm sorry for dragging you into this, but don't worry, Nick. Our organisation believes in the
master of order and is the most fair and just. It will definitely prove our innocence, and you'll soon regain your freedom..." Seeing Nick in this state, a hint of disappointment showed in her eyes, and she could not help but hug herself tighter, her whispers sounding from the gaps between her arms.
"This girl hasn't given up yet?" A translucent figure penetrated the wall full of seals and shackles, entering the room.
Seeing the state she was in, a strange smile appeared on his lips, "Why is it that I always have to be the one to shatter the purity and fantasies of children?"
The translucent being melded into Nick, and the A.I. Chip took over Partial AI #1. From the outside, it looked like Nick's eyes went blank for a while before returning to normal.
Nobody noticed this change, and having recalled the shadow clone and Partial AI, 'Nick' was Leylin once more.
After getting the warning from the Partial AI, Leylin had hastened to reach this place in the shortest time possible. The guards and spell formations outside were no issue for him. When it came to spell formations or runes, the research by Magi in the Magus World was leaps and bounds ahead of the marine tribes.
Leylin had regained most of his strength, and he could do all sorts of things with ease. Most importantly, he was now a rank 4 Sacrificer of the Nefarious Filthbird and had the Wings of Chaos. This made it even easier for him to break through the seals set up in the name of the Trial's Eye.
These two were not just arch enemies, but their strengths restrained each other. Of course, when compared to Leylin, the marine tribes outside were useless.
"Belinda!" Leylin spoke slowly in a low voice, "At this point, are you still harbouring fantasies towards the marine tribes outside?"
"Fantasies? No! Even if they're driven by benefits and greed, the master of order will come and save me..." She spoke resolutely. With her devoutness to the Trial's Eye, he felt like her only being a rank 3 Sacrificer was a waste.
"Yes! Anyone can see how foul the marine tribe is. It's not just the dignitary, Trial's Eye. Even the higher ups know that..." Leylin spoke nonchalantly, almost with a hint of sarcasm. Without waiting for her to speak, he continued, "But... so what?"
"With the situation right now, where Bayclark has disappeared and the operation has failed, someone will have to take responsibility. Bayclark is an Elder Eye of the Beholders and has a great amount of power; he clearly fought with all his might. There's a chance that he might survive, and nobody would dare offend a rank 5..."
"What's left is to find people to take responsibility, such as you. The marine tribe is very harmonious, and if they really had to incriminate someone, it'd be you."
At this point, Leylin saw that her shoulders were trembling even more violently. He added on, "However, the losses incurred by this is something your higher-ups definitely don't want to see. Hence, this matter cannot really be pursued. A scapegoat is needed, or rather a sacrifice has to be found.
"At this point, is there someone more suitable than you? As an outsider with no background, you don't have a group to back you up either like the marine tribe..." Leylin started to sound like he was ridiculing her.
"No! Even if they're all like that, the mighty master of trials, the dignitary of fairness and justness, will definitely not abandon me..." Belinda raised her head, her scarlet pupils filled with insanity and hopelessness.
"I won't say more about that." Leylin shook his head, "But I hope you are aware that if the Trial's Eye is in favour of absolute justice and fairness, it would long since have fallen and disappeared into the dust of history. To survive up to this point and spread its ways in so many worlds, it must know compromise. In order to uphold fairness and justness to a certain extent, the master of trials is already quite successful..."
"No, I don't believe it! I don't!" The despair in her eyes immediately dissipated and she crumpled to the ground like a ball, boneless.
"Hm? She can't take this blow? Or has she thought of something?"
Leylin shook his head inwardly, 'Is her mind too weak, or is there some particular injury to it?'