And meanwhile, Edelgard was indeed too busy to think about the Blue Lions’ strange behavior.
“Go to the backside, Edelgard! To the backside!” Dimitri screeched, as he threw a brush her way.
From her side, the brunette showed him her tongue in the most mocking manner possible.
“I will take care of Dorte however I want!” Edelgard caressed the horse and did not move an inch. “You take care of the backside!”
“I don’t want, I’m scared!” Dimitri whined, but Edelgard grinned evilly. “Oh, Goddess, help me.”
“Beth isn’t here now to help you!” Edelgard said mockingly, making raspberry sounds as she made mocking gestures at Dimitri, like she did with her youngest siblings so they would laugh.
To Edelgard, Dimitri was her brother. That was why she was so concerned about him and so worried about keeping him safe from the other Blue Lions that were tormenting him.
“Shut up, El!” Dimitri blushed and stuttered an incomprehensible string of words. “Take care of Dorte’s tail, someone has to brush it!”
“I-I will!” Marianne arrived, followed by Beth. She had been moping around the cathedral, because someone was already on horse duty.
Beth had found her and she had managed to get Marianne to tell her that she missed Hilda because she couldn’t find her and that she wanted to be with Dorte, her favorite horse, but she didn’t know who was on horse duty and she was too scared to go on her own.
“Beth!” Dimitri lightened up when he saw her, but the one who said her name was Edelgard. “Ooooh, looks like the Goddess heard your call.”
She winked at Dimitri totally not discreetly, as Beth convinces Marianne to go to where Edelgard and Dimitri were standing.
“Thank you so much, Professor Beleth.” Marianne said gratefully. “I am very grateful you accompanied me here, I wouldn’t have been brave enough to do it on my own.”
“No problem, Marianne, you are very nice, you should try to speak to more students, surely they will appreciate being around someone as kind as you are.”
Marianne smiled at her shyly, while Edelgard was too busy thinking of ways of how to tease Dimitri about his more than obvious crush on her teacher’s sister.
“You know, Dimitri is just as shy as you are.” She said reassuringly to Marianne, who turned to Dimitri in surprise and raised her brows.
“Well, maybe, but I-“ Dimitri started stuttering and blushed even more than before, under Marianne’s curious gaze. “Ah... we can be friends, sure, Marianne.”
“Yes! Let’s all be friends!” Edelgard said happily.
Over the next days, Marianne spent more time with Beth. It was mostly because Marianne needed specific tutoring for healing magic and while Professor Manuela was instructing Dimitri on some things, Beth taught Marianne what she knew about healing magic. Sothis was most of the time with Rhea, but she also followed her adoptive daughter around, hoping to talk to Dimitri, but Beth was quick to shoo her away when she started acting strange.
On his side, Byleth spent more time with his own students, Lysithea and Leonie taking active parts in his class, and the Conspiracy Group kept asking him to join them but Byleth needed to spent time with his other students, like Edelgard, Petra and Dorothea.
Though everything seemed normal. Ashe was crestfallen, but he hid his pain well through indifference. The one who was about to snap was Sylvain, and everyone began to notice. Ingrid was so worried she even warned Beth about it.
“I know it seems improper for me to ask this of you.” Ingrid said. “And I should really watch over myself, because I will graduate and I have my fiancée waiting for me, but, I...”
The blonde girl broke down crying before she said what she was intending to say. Beth comforted her, rubbing her arm reassuringly, telling her that it was Ok, that the monastery would watch over her and that there was no danger.
“I know I seem like a terrible friend because I’ve been ignoring Dimitri ever since he came back. But I really do care about him, and I have to ask you to protect him as well as you can. I know, I know for certain that he’s in danger. So hide him. Tell him not to come to class. Please. Don’t tell him it was me, just do it. If you don’t then, I’m afraid...”
The noble trailed off. She knew she couldn’t tell Beth exactly why she was fearing for the worst, but there was a completely plausible reason for her to. She did not doubt that she would help Dimitri and that would redeem her behavior.
“Thank you for telling me, Ingrid.” Beth said softly, as to not throw the girl off. “I will do whatever I can.”
Unfortunately, Ingrid was right. Thanks to her warning, Beth told Rhea and Rhea allowed Dimitri to have private classes and not go to Hanneman’s any more. Due to that, nevertheless, the victim to the attack that was targeted to Dimitri was none other than Hanneman.
Even Ashe was shaken by the sudden attack, and he responded to it by hiding behind Dedue, who was sitting beside him. Mercedes was frozen by the shock, Annette let out a little cry and Ingrid just closed her eyes to not look. The whole class witnessed their teacher getting vaporized by a beam of purple light.
Then Sylvain got up from this desk and simply walked away from the classroom.
Even though the other students heard the ruckus, the knights of Seiros were not able to stop Sylvain from escaping the Monastery. His objectives were unclear and Ingrid was almost certain that he would try to murder Dimitri, but for some reason he didn’t.
Hanneman was taken to the infirmary and treated with outmost care but that did not help him much. He was a very grave state and would need to recover during the following weeks. Rhea asked Beth to take over the Blue Lions and since the main threat to Dimitri’s health was gone, he could come back to class.
However, that wasn’t the last they’d seen from Sylvain. A little while later, they received a call for help from the Gautier Territory stating that their Blessed Weapon had been stolen by none other than Sylvain. Sylvain had broken into the territory forcefully and taken the Lance of Ruin through killing the guards that were watching over it. Margrave Gautier said that Sylvain could be heading to the Monastery and advised the Knights of Seiros to be prepared to fight him.
Indeed, he did.
Dimitri was confined inside the safest place of the Monastery with Sothis and Beth, while the Knights of Seiros were above prepared to fight Sylvain. Byleth had Shamir, Catherine, Alois and Gilbert backing him up alongside his students.
If Sylvain was already a threat without the Lance, having it only made him a bigger threat. As to why he considered that he needed it to get revenge on Dimitri, no one was certain, but they were all doing their best to fight both him and his spectral soldiers, created by his magic.
The students swept the soldiers off easily as Byleth and the knights advanced towards Sylvain, who was fixated on continuing although he clearly was not strong enough to break through the monastery’s defenses.
Byleth was ordered to kill Sylvain and Margrave Gautier had expressed that he was aware of what Sylvain’s punishment deserved to be for his behavior. He didn’t really want to, but when he was finally capable to do it, because of his magnificent Blessed Weapon...
It didn’t work.
Byleth looked at his sword and then looked at Sylvain, who was grinning maniacally. His white hair was falling on his face and his brown eyes were completely devoid of life and emotion, but somehow were glinting evilly. He just started cackling, what eventually broke into a laughter, as Byleth’s frustration and confusion grew.
“What? Can’t kill me?” He was just laughing. He was in danger of death, and all he did was laugh. “Of course you can’t. I have no soul.”
Because of the fact they were unable to kill him, the Knights simply reduced him and got him locked in a cell, wondering what to do with him. Rhea decided that they had to ask Sylvain why he wished to kill Dimitri and to investigate his two crests, because they might be the reason why he was acting so strange.
Since the Crest scholar was out of cold and unable to look into the issue, Rhea asked the second greatest crest expert in the monastery to accompany her, Beth and Byleth to interrogate Sylvain and discover the truth behind the two crests he carried.
“How did you even get these cuffs. I had never seen stuff like this before.” Sylvain said, and for both Beth, Lindhardt and Rhea, it was the longest they’d heard him speak.
When he was a student in the academy, he barely ever uttered a word to anyone. Hearing his voice when he was behind bars, cuffed to a wall and unable to use magic, made him look unexpectedly dorky. Specially if the fact that he wanted to kill the heir of the Kingdom of Faerghus was forgotten.
“Sylvain Gautier.” Rhea began. “Your acts against the Church are enough reason to give you a death sentence. However, if you cooperate with us, we might grant some mercy to your judgement.”
“Mercy?” Sylvain started laughing. “Mercy. Sounds funny. Like I’d care about that.”
“Why did you attack Professor Hanneman?” Rhea began to ask.
“He’s been pissing me off for a while. Also, I had prepared a spell for Dimitri and I had to use it. A collateral victim he was, if you might.”
That made Beth realize Ingrid was right and both her and Rhea were glad they had listened to Ingrid. Otherwise, Dimitri might be toast and the Kingdom of Faerghus would be submerged into a worse panic than it already was.
“And why did you steal the Lance of Ruin from your own family?” Rhea continued.
“Because I need a weapon to fight the sword you have.” Sylvain looked at Byleth and Beth when saying that. “But it wasn’t strong enough. Fuck.”
“And what crests do you exactly have?” Rhea asked.
“I don’t want to answer that question.” Sylvain grunted.
“If you don’t tell us, we will see ourselves obligated to inspect your body. If you wish to avoid that, you must tell us at once.”
Sylvain’s eyes trailed around the floor, as if he were thinking of a way to escape the situation. He knew he had to tell the truth because otherwise they would strip him naked and watch for themselves.
“During the battle you had with Byleth, we observed the use of two different crests... the Crest of Gautier and another crest that amplified the damage you made and healed you...” Rhea suspected what Crest that was but she wanted Sylvain to say it.
“Yes, the Crest of Flames.” Sylvain whined lowly. “You two should know, you have it.”
“And how exactly did you obtain the crest of Flames?”
That was the reason why they had brought Lindhardt. Lindhardt was the expert of crests so he could tell them in case Sylvain lied or made something up. Sylvain was inoffensive at the moment so they trusted he wouldn’t be able to hurt Lindhardt.
“Experiments.” Sylvain simply answered. “They took me and experimented with me. They practically sewed this second crest into my skin. Told me I’d die. I don’t care. I don’t have anything to live for, not anymore.”
Then Rhea tried to speak, but Sylvain cut her off.
“I won’t tell you who did it. I hate them, but I won’t tell you about them because if there is someone I hate more than I hate them, it’s Dimitri. You are protecting him. Therefore, I cannot trust you. Try to kill me if you might, but you will achieve nothing.”
The Archbishop tightened her fists as she glared into the albino’s brown eyes. She held back a little shrill of fury and simply contented herself with walking away with the two bearers of the Crest of Flames and the crest expert. Since Hanneman was unable to conduct the investigation, Rhea was forced to ask for help from Lindhardt, to uncover who had the capability of adding different crests into one’s skin.