Sard seemed to be a bit slow and his eyes were dull, however, his smile was still very gentle and nice. He did not respond to Orvarit and Natasha's question immediately, but followed his own pace to tell the story.
"Several months ago, some of our night watchers successfully targeted a sorcerer from the congress, which is very rare, since most of them who came to Aalto before never stayed here long, not to mention trying to contact the many hiding sorcerers in Aalto. After all, their shared goal was to find the remains of the ancient magic empire in the Dark Mountain Range."
"Well…" Orvarit rubbed his chin thoughtfully, "maybe they were also trying to have more sorcerers and sorceresses in Aalto to know and join their congress in order to grow and expand. As far as I know, that's something that the congress has been working on for more than two hundred years." As a pious believer, the grand duke definitely knew much more about sorcerers than most other people did.
Several nobles sitting behind were paying close attention to what Sard, the grand duke and the princess were talking about. Their faces looked odd, as if there was something on their mind, but all of them decided to remain silent.
"You're right, Your Highness." Sard adjusted his sitting position a bit and continued, "Unfortunately, the night watchers failed to catch him alive, and the sorcerer destroyed himself." Then he took a glance at the tall and strong saint knight standing beside him, letting the knight continue with the rest of the explanation.
Only the church knights can be called saint knights.
The knight's face was fully covered by his protection mask, through which his dull voice came, "We think the sorcerer who called himself 'professor' came here for the same reason, and maybe also to investigate what happened to the last sorcerer."
Sitting in and leaning against her seat, Natasha looked pretty relaxed. Now she was looking in another direction with a hint of a smile on her face, "It seems like you know a lot about what the sorcerers are doing in Aalto, don't you?"
She was not being disrespectful, actually, her piousness was acknowledged before by Sard himself, and her teacher was the chief commander of Sword Brothers serving the church. However, except when she was praying in front of the God of Truth, Natasha was always quite casual about almost everything.
"Your Highness, the church has been tracking them for years, and the sorcerers never hid themselves in front of the church perfectly," the knight lowered his head, "so did the so-called 'Professor'. Some clues are showing that he follows the contemporary magic system, and that's why we speculate that Professor is from the congress. It seems like he does not really trust the sorcerers in Aalto. He was being very careful, so although we have two people spying on them, what we know about Professor is still relatively limited. The church decided to be more cautious."
In the hundreds of years in Aalto, a few sorcerers betraying their belief and turning to work for the church was not something new. Knowing that the sorcerer groups in Aalto were too small to cause them much trouble, instead of destroying them all at once, the church decided to leave them in Aalto in order to play a long game with the Congress of Magic.
"Well… at this point, the mysterious Professor is not a big deal yet, as far as I'm concerned. What makes me feel worried is Argent Horn. I wonder what they are planning in Aalto." Orvarit cupped his chin in his hand.
"As you wish, your majesty, " the knight slightly bowed, "We will leave the junior night watchers to trace the case of Professor, and the main force of the church keeps investigating the heresy."
"Still haven't found Rosan Aaron?" Twirling her long purple hair with her finger breezily, Natasha asked.
"Not yet. We're trying our best," answered the saint knight.
The orchestra was ready.
At this time, a young, purple-haired man entered the balcony. His facial features were a bit similar to that of Natasha, but he was even taller than her. His suit was emblazoned with the coat of arms of the Violet family.
The young man nodded to the nobles in the balcony, smiling. Then he walked toward the first row of seats in the front, saluting the grand duke and the cardinal respectfully in the knight manner.
"My dear cousin, you're late." Natasha waved to him.
This young man was the nephew of the grand duke, the chief commander of Aalto's city guard, Count Verdi.
"Sorry." He sat down relatively close to Natasha, "Just got some news about Argent Horn, but it turned out to be quite useless… Lucien Evans… the composer of Fate? I never heard this name before."
Count Verdi, at the same time, was also quite famous in the music field.
"Interesting… I don't know this name either," said the grand duke. Hearing Verdi's comment, both Orvarit and Sard picked up the lists.
"The name of the symphony is 'Fate'. I bet this Lucien is a pretty brave and creative composer," Sard responded kindly, "I don't really have a preference between the two music trends."
Natasha grinned. "I happen to know something about this Lucien. Yesterday, Baron Othello came to me and asked for the permission to replace the third piece of music on the list with a new symphony. And here it is, from this Victor's new student, Lucien Evans, who just started to learn music three months ago."
"Three months ago? That's insane." Verdi slightly frowned. Pursuing to be perfect, Verdi was strict with himself and knowing the fact that there was someone even more talented than him was definitely not pleasant.
"Well… Unfortunately, it looks like this guy is pretty talented, even more than you are, although you started to learn music at eight and at nine you were already able to compose. But seriously, don't worry Verdi. He cannot compete with you. I met the guy the other day, and he looked like a woman! I'm quite curious to see what he can do."
"Well, some people are just geniuses, which is not fair per se, but it is the intention of God." Sard commented.
And that reminded Natasha of the story of Sard.
Sard was not a genius, ever. Since the first day he entered Aalto Monastery, he was never able to compete with his smart peers. However, in the end, it was Sard who became the Saint Cardinal, although it took him more than a hundred years.
So he often told the followers, "The faith in God has nothing to do with talent."
"Well, we'll wait and see." Orvarit laughed, "What Natasha said makes me feel curious now, too."
At this time, Victor walked on the stage with a baton in his hand.
Firstly, he bowed in the direction of the grand duke's balcony in a solemn manner, then he bowed to the other nobles and musicians. Finally, he turned around and lowered his head, staring at the baton in his hand.
The playing started. Orvarit closed his eyes and smiled, "This is the best one among Victor's previous work. It's just beautiful."
Everyone stopped talking and immersed themselves in the music.
Looking into each other's eyes, Lucien, Lott and Felicia smiled together behind the backstage. They could tell Victor was in a very good form. Now they had become real classmates, if not yet friends.
The first symphony lasted for about forty minutes, and it went very well. During the break, some of the audiences expressed their concern that if the first symphony was already the best one among Victor's previous work, the rest of them might not be that good.
But Victor proved that they were wrong. The second piece of symphony was actually even better. It was lively, vivid and full of life, like a cool summer breeze, like an autumn field. At the end of it, Orvarit applauded for a long time with satisfaction.
"Victor never stops making progress. He's awesome," commented the grand duke.
"That's true. It's soothing and beautiful," echoed Verdi, although in his mind, he did not really appreciate this kind of country style symphony.
"Well, it's good, but I think Victor is capable of doing an even better job. I didn't feel his passion in it. There's still space for improvement," said Natasha.