The Cult Leader in the Clergy Academy - C.188


After finishing the meal I gave him, Yu-Hyun casually said, "The reason why your cover hasn’t been blown yet... is just pure luck."

Although I had called it a meal, it was actually a mixture of leftovers, like dog food. Nevertheless, Yu-Hyun looked like he was more than happy with it, gobbling the food up as if it were delicious. It had to have been because he had been starving for a day and a half and was mentally exhausted by the intense physical pain.

"What does that mean?"

"I meant it quite literally. You were lucky." Yu-Hyun swallowed the food in his mouth and continued, "People only see what they know. And they live under the delusion that what they know is what the world amounts to. That's why you're still alive and well."

"The same could be said for you."

"Right. I know a little more than others and can see more, but I can only see as much as I know, just like everyone else."

"But why do you keep spouting bullshit as if you know everything?"

"Very few people are aware of the fact that I don’t know everything. You and I are similar in that sense. We both know that we don’t know everything."

He was right about that. I knew that I didn’t know everything because I had Legba and Baron Samedi by my side. They had much more experience and broader knowledge than I did, and I was ignorant and foolish compared to them. I couldn't even have the arrogant thought of being a know-it-all.

"What does that have to do with me being lucky though?"

"If anyone even suspected that there was a Cult Leader of the Voodoo Cult at Florence Academy, your identity would have been exposed in no time."

"I guess."

"But luckily, no one had such suspicions. There’s no way the leader of the Voodoo Cult could have infiltrated Florence Academy. Because they were thinking this way, no one could figure it out even when you slipped up from time to time.”


"Even if you used spells or, what was it, something alongside a miracle... ah, yes, powers! No matter how much you used your powers, they would rationalize the situation by saying that it’s a miracle or the utilization of blessings,” Yu-Hyun said.

"Actually, I’m not any different. I didn't know spells were so overpowered. I fainted without even having a chance to resist. If I had known, I wouldn't have followed you here."

"I get it. You son of a bitch, stop bullshitting and tell me about the underground prison already."

"Ah, that was what you asked at the start. Right."

I had asked Yu-Hyun several times, but he kept babbling about random things without mentioning anything about the underground prison.

Yu-Hyun took a deep breath.

"There are a total of seven underground prisons. Four of those hold regular felons, and the living conditions are better there than the other three."


"Two hold clergymen who have rebelled against the Holy See or caused problems because of their corruption. The facilities are not bad, but they have the strictest management. The prisoners are former clergymen, so they have more power than ordinary criminals. Finally..."

"The last one must be where people who are considered to be cultists, like the Satanists or Voodooists, are held."

"That's right. You could assume that all Satanists and Voodooists are imprisoned there."

"Do you know the location of the prison?" I asked.

Yu-Hyun immediately shook his head without hesitation.

"I'm not the official successor yet... Unless it's someone like the Pope or Sung Yu-Da, no one would know."

"Sung Yu-Da?"

A name so unpleasant because it was so familiar. Just hearing that name made my hair stand on end.

At that moment, a bell rang from my pocket. I was receiving a call from Soo-Young. It probably wasn't an urgent call. There was no reason for Soo-Young to call me over urgent matters. Above all, Yu-Hyun might hear Soo-Yeong's voice if I answered the phone. It would be difficult for me if Soo-Yeong heard Yu-Hyun's voice, so I declined the call.

"What's the deal with Sung Yu-Da?"

"Even if he's stepped down now, he was a former cardinal. He must have some information about the place. Although only he would know."

Yu-Hyun continued to explain. "The Holy See usually hands out positions to the archbishop once you’ve spent enough time with them, but cardinals are different. Once you become a cardinal, you can participate in the papal conclave."

"Papal conclave? Then what’s the point of having a successor like you mentioned?”

"The key to being the successor is how many cardinals you can get on your side. You see, if you come from a lineage of the Pope, you can receive support from traditional cardinals without doing anything. That’s why there are rumors that I have a strong chance of becoming the successor."

"And is that the reason why you approached me? Does it have to do with the papal conclave?"

"...I wouldn’t say it is unrelated," Yu-Hyun answered reluctantly.

I nodded.

"Then, besides you, how many other successors are there?"

"Three," Yu-Hyun answered briefly.

His expression twisted for a moment. Although it was merely a moment, during that brief snippet of time, his face looked extremely disfigured.

"...They're all fucking bastards."

"You’re one to talk."

Yu-Hyun was about to say something but closed his mouth. I looked at the room filled with hazy mist and got lost in my thoughts. I had a lot on my mind, but I couldn't figure out what exactly I was thinking. My thoughts were like the mist.

"...Aren’t you acquainted with Sung Yu-Da?"


It was a bewildering question. Of course, I knew Sung Yu-Da. I had done extensive research on him, both legal and illegal, using various methods. I couldn’t think of anything else but killing Sung Yu-Da back then.

But Sung Yu-Da didn't know me. He might have known my name through Ha-Yeon, F.A.'s faculty members, or through connections that I wasn’t aware of, but the person he knew was a name tainted with lies, an identity associated with F.A.'s Holy Name of Charity. Sung Yu-Da didn't know me as the Cult Leader.

I wanted to believe that, and I lived believing that.

Yu-Hyun's words shattered my hopes.

"There's no way Sung Yu-Da wouldn't know you."


"As you all may know, Ms. Ye-Jin will be absent for a while. During that time, I will be the homeroom teacher for the Class of Charity. Oh, and today, Sun-Woo is absent due to falling ill..." Jung-Hak took over for Ye-Jin and conducted the homeroom.

Most of the announcements were minor. There were some mentions of the practical exam, but they weren’t very important. The practical exam scores would not be publicly disclosed, but the students would be able to see their practical exam scores on the combined grade report. That was the gist of his announcements.

In-Ah half-listened to homeroom. She didn’t feel the need to concentrate on it, as it wasn’t Ms. Ye-Jin who led the homeroom, and she was bothered by Sun-Woo's absence.

On the day of the practical exam, she saw that Sun-Woo was anxious throughout the day. She couldn’t get in contact with him after the exam had ended. Worried, she had thought about calling him that night but decided against it. She thought that her call might be an inconvenience for Sun-Woo.

"This period is self-study. It's good to have fun after the exams are over, but don't have too much fun─"

"This isn't the end of school. We still have the second semester left, so take this time to thoroughly prepare and catch up with students who have higher grades than you. Especially those in the Department of Priests. Since you can't physically train like paladins or crusaders, from now on─"

Most of the morning classes were self-study periods. Actually, it was more like a time to listen to the sermons of teachers who had nothing else to do. Although it was called self-study, none of the students actually studied.

The ominous rumors about the people who had been injured during the practical exams—Ye-Jin, Bok-Dong, and Jin-Seo—were still going strong. Nevertheless, the students were excited because the exams were over. Occasionally, talks of planning to go somewhere after school or during the weekend would reach In-Ah's ears.


Someone approached her while she was trying hard to read the Holy Book in the middle of the lively medley of students’ voices. It was a familiar face. They used to talk often at the beginning of the semester, and they occasionally kept in touch.

"Hey, why are you studying when the exams are over? Are you studying ahead already?"

"Huh? Oh, yeah. I had nothing else to do."

"You study because you have nothing else to do? Wow, you're really..."

Seeing her friend spring back in disgust, In-Ah smiled and placed a bookmark on the page she was reading. She closed the Holy Book and looked up.

"I was just looking at it. Why?"

"Nothing special. What are you doing this weekend?"

"Hmm... I don't have any plans."

"Really? Would you like to come out with us this weekend?”

Her friend's eyes sparkled with anticipation.

Come to think of it, she had spent most of the beginning of the semester with Sun-Woo and... She hadn’t really met other friends recently, and she hadn't met many people because she was busy studying for exams.

Even after the exams were over, she decided to continue to study diligently, and she was going to be busy soon because the essay competition was coming up. But it wouldn't hurt to have a day of fun. Besides, she didn't have anything else to do on the weekend.

"Sure. But what should we do?"

"I haven't thought about it... Maybe we could grab a bite to eat, wander around, go bowling, or something like that? We don't need to plan everything out."

"Sounds good. Just hanging out with our classmates, right?"

"Yeah. You, me, and Yeri... And a few guys, the ones sitting over there."

She pointed to a group of people gathered behind us, chatting and laughing. Yeri and three boys were gathered together, having a lively conversation. In-Ah frowned as she recognized a familiar face among the boys.

"Isn't he the one who used to hang out with Sung-Hyun?"

"Huh? Oh, yeah, he is... Honestly, I used to have a bad impression of him too. But after talking to him, he seems kind. Also, he is really sorry for his actions. For real."

"Well... Even if you say so," In-Ah muttered with a furrowed brow.

Doing good deeds now did not erase the mistakes that the boy had made in the past. Hearing her friend talk about his sincere remorse, she couldn't help but think that he might not be fundamentally a bad person. However, considering his past as a troublemaker who used to hang out with Sung-Hyun, she couldn't see him in a positive light.

In-Ah’s friend glanced at In-Ah as she was deep in thought and smirked.

"So, all you’re saying is that you don’t want him to come, right? Hey, Jae-Bin! In-Ah says she doesn't–!"

"Hey, hey! Are you crazy? That's not what I meant!"

In-Ah quickly covered her friend's mouth. She knew her friend was carefree, but she hadn’t expected it to be this extreme. After removing her hand from her friend's mouth, her friend spoke up.

"You’ll be there?"

"Fine, I'll go. Seriously, you’re unbelievable..."

In-Ah laughed and stopped when she saw her friend's soft smile.

"I'll let you know once we decide where and what time to meet!"

"Okay, got it. But..."

In-Ah glanced briefly at Sun-Woo's seat. It was empty. They said that he was sick and couldn’t make it today. Was he feeling really unwell? He looked quite sick when she last saw him at the examination site.

"Um, I’ll let you know if I can't make it."

"What? Why are you making excuses again?"

"It's not an excuse... I'm just saying that in case I can't make it."

"This makes me nervous. You’ve canceled on us more than once before...”

“Hey, it wasn’t that bad! Your words really hurt."

"Okay, okay. Anyway, I'll talk to you later!"

With that, In-Ah’s friend left the classroom. It seemed like they had to urgently be somewhere.