Book II – Bandit, Chapter 18 – Phase Three

— Pangaea, South Ward, Dark Forest

One week later…

Light desperately tried to sneak into the forest through the small gaps in the trees. The foliage here was captivating but common. This area didn’t possess dense spiritual energy, so only low levels of beasts and common medicinal herbs existed in this area. On the side of a tranquil stream 450 meters north of the dark cave that the team had been staking out, Aiken Moon was cultivating. He was wearing white linen clothes that Dessa had fashioned out from some of the clothes Jodye had requisitioned from their attackers.

In his hand was a stalk of Purity Feverfew, a bronze rank medicinal herb containing very mild spiritual energies, perfect for juniors aiming to practice Saint cultivation. Jodye Trill had given him 5 stalks of the Purity Feverfew, and helped him absorb the powers within so that he could break through the Fledgling Saint realm!

Currently, Aiken sat on a rock in the middle of the stream across from Jodye Trill in the lotus position. Jodye sat on an opposite rock and was also wearing plain white clothes, with [Pharaoh’s Law4Lawthe rules and principles that create, govern, and maintain the energies of the universe. When laws come into harmony they form different systems naturally, with as many functions as the laws in harmony. For laws to enter a state of harmony, they must be compatible and have a proper conduit such as a star, or anything with its own unique Origin source law. With a good enough conduit it is possible to make incompatible laws reach a state of harmony, but in such a scenario there is a high chance of the force turning cancerous. The condensation of law energy produces what is known as Force or Qi..] on his head. Using his divine awareness, he carefully helped Aiken Moon extract the pure spiritual energies and convert them into a pure force to temper his skin and muscles! While he was doing this Aiken chanted the first verse of the Azure World Epoch, summoning azure world essence from the void to do the same!

Unlike the others, Aiken had only barely reached the major completion level of mastery for verse one’s first stanza before he starting experiencing a bit of trouble. However, now he could finally summon a bit of true essence on his own. Jodye even noted black dregs and contaminants leaking from Aiken Moon’s pores. The kid could finish his breakthrough at any second!

Meanwhile, Dessa Chimes was in the bushes more than 100 meters away, watching a caravan transporting beast corpses and piles of energy crystals. On the side of the procession was the drawing of a vicious looking Crimson-claw Dragonhorse. Crimson-claw Dragonhorses are high-level Vicious Beast27Vicious BeastMonster Clan beast that possesses Second Rank lifeblood. Vicious beasts are animals that can absorb and refine the forces of the heavens and earth. As a result, they are far more powerful than the animals who can’t. Level 1 Vicious Beast = 20 bp Level 2 Vicious Beast = 60 bp Level 3 Vicious Beast = 110 bp Level 4 Vicious Beast = 170 bp Level 5 Vicious Beast = 240 bp Level 6 Vicious Beast = 320 bp Level 7 Vicious Beast = 410 bp Level 8 Vicious Beast = 510 bp Level 9 Vicious Beast = 620 bps. Even the weakest among these creatures were born at level 7. They also have a weak draconic bloodline!

This meant that they would undoubtedly become Trickster30Trickstermonster clan beast with third rank lifeblood. when a level 9 vicious beast with god beast lifeblood reaches level 10 they evolve into low-level demi-god beasts possessing superior intelligence without their own complete demi-god physique. Due to their frail forms, they use their lifeblood powers to condense a cocoon or origin qi that takes on the form of other beasts. Tricksters fight to obtain the ‘life force’ required to condense a monster core by condensing enough god beast lifeblood. Condensing the monster core allows the trickster to upgrade its physique to that of one closer to a god beast and cultivate different lifeblood inheritances. Vicious beasts with a hint of origin god beast bloodline in them merely become higher level tricksters upon evolution, with a more complete true form. Tricksters are only born through the evolution of a vicious beast. Injuries received by tricksters in their true forms risk reducing their level since they must burn their lifeblood essence to recover and transform again. Level 1 Trickster = 1,000 BP Level 2 Trickster = 1,250 BP Level 3 Trickster = 1,600 BP Level 4 Trickster = 2 AP Level 5 Trickster = 4.5 AP Level 6 Trickster = 9 AP Level 7 Trickster = 14 AP Level 8 Trickster = 21 AP Level 9 Trickster = 30 AP s if they advanced past level 9 vicious beast. Taking out a small pink-blue serenity crystal shard, Dessa Chimes covered her hand in a film of true essence and spoke into it, “Mr. Jupiter, the Crimson Rider’s trade caravan is already on the move!”

“Excellent! After I help Aiken stabilize his realm, we’ll enter the cave,” Jodye Trill’s voice was transmitted to Dessa’s ears through true essence vibrations.

Dessa Chimes suddenly got excited and whispered, “Mr. Jupiter, could it be? Did little Aiken breakthrough?”

“Indeed, it happened just as you contacted me. Now quickly withdraw, return before you are discovered,” finished Jodye as the crystal shard in Dessa’s hand stopped glowing. Dessa wasted no time dashed back to the boys’ location.

Aiken Moon was incomparably excited, he had even unconsciously changed his form of address towards this young phenom, “Boss, I did it, I did it! I, Aiken Moon, the third son of Augustus Moon have become a dual path cultivator!”

“Slow your rolls, kid,” Jodye Trill berated, pouring cold water over Aiken’s excited mood. “Until I can break through into the True Saint realm and remove those fate curses, you’re just a weak Fledgling Saint. Now clean up, next comes the fun part.”

— Host Space

“Didn’t Autumn Saver say that there was a way to do it as long as you possess astral essence? Now that you’ve refined both of your lungs with worldly power, are you certain you can’t remove those fate curses?” In the host space, Xavier gave the dragon soul a reminder.

“Ah!” replied the dragon soul. “Indeed, I had almost forgotten about this.”

“Almost?”

— Dark Forest

“Boss, what will we do if we get caught by the Crimson Riders? Or what if we run into some high-level fiends?” Aiken Moon asked as he disrobed and jumped into the stream. He was still somewhat apprehensive about this.

“As long as the captain doesn’t come to find us himself we’ll be fine,” responded Jodye Trill indifferently.

“Okay, and if he does?!” asked Aiken Moon from the stream.

“Who knows? Maybe we’ll die a graveless death,” Jodye Trill’s words caused Aiken to turn pale. Jodye felt that this boy was indeed too cowardly. If he wasn’t Dessa’s friend, Jodye would have likely delivered him safely out of the Dark Forest and sent him on his way. After all, he had full confidence that he could take on anyone outside of the captain once he broke through to the Perfected Sophomore rank in his Sage cultivation path.

This day was also not too far away.

To reach the next sub-rank all he had to do was connect his origin veins to his origin pool to complete a process called “Taking Root.”

His titan cultivation path may be able to progress as well once he refined his spirit points with astral essence force! He had been stuck at a bottleneck in his titan cultivation for quite some time now, and he was worried that level 9 of the Wimpy Man realm was his limit! If that were the case, he would have to start gathering resources in preparation for his ascension to the next realm. As for ascending to the next realm of the Sage and Saint paths, due to his shocking level of talent, there would be no significant obstacles.

Jodye’s only challenge was comprehending a primary force concept! Once Jodye Trill’s origin veins connected deep into his origin pool, and then his origin pool fused with his force genesis through his comprehension of a primary force concept, his body would undergo a brand new type of transformation!

In this world, only with a primary force concept comprehended could one be considered a martial expert! This was because once the origin pool fused with a force genesis, it would become an original force sea!

On Gaea, they referred to this as the origin sea.

Jodye Trill felt his three main paths were progressing smoothly. However, what he lacked the most in was his soul cultivation. Jodye calculated that if he could reach the difficult step of the second stage of the Cosmic Vision Scripture, his soul force would be elevated to the next level! That meant that under the effects of Pharaoh’s Law, his soul attacks would be able to affect even the elite experts two realms above himself!

Of course, that was under the circumstance that he could survive long enough use it!

After thinking up to here, Jodye sat down and withdrew a serenity crystal from his space ring. This was the first gift his father had ever promised him. The serenity crystal emitted soft pink purple and blue lights. Using his soul force backed by the power of his stored spirit source, Jodye began absorbing serene energies from the energy crystal into his own right eye. Afterward, he would fuse the yin force of this serene energy into the divine spirit source of his right eye using his divine awareness.

Jodye had already mastered this process, as a few days earlier he had achieved the advanced Serene Sight stage of the Cosmic Vision Scripture! He now has an advanced Eye of Serenity! This meant he could perform the powerful soul attack, Serene Source Beam! Unfortunately, he could currently only use this attack three times before being drained of all his soul force. This would leave him in a completely vulnerable state, as without soul force his very existence would be unstable!

Realistically, he could only use this soul skill twice, for safety reasons. Using it a third time was suicidal for now.

Jodye Trill wondered what his mother would say if she knew he had mastered a soul class serenity force attack. She would likely applaud his efforts before making him work twice as hard. Jodye smiled wryly upon thinking of his mother. He could do nothing but hope that she and Kamila would be okay. Upon thinking of the unconscious Kamila and bound Isis Trilleck, his dormant astral points flared to life once more, causing him to forcefully remember his father’s sacrifice to calm himself down. Losing himself in anger was pointless.

He had learned this lesson in his past life.

Without strength, all was for naught!

He had to obtain strength! Peak level strength!

Only then could he obtain the answers he’s seeking, and obliterate that bald maniac who dared to touch his mother! This man was the first man in this lifetime that Jodye had decided to murder with all his heart.

“Do not worry over this, just do as we have discussed. We will find him, Jodye. However, first, you must become strong. That man is terrifying to the current you.” Sylvester reminded Jodye from the Host Space.

“Mn,” Jodye Trill nodded and continued his preparations. Not even his father was a match for that madman.
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— The second level of the dark cave

Six hours later…

Shing!

Shing!

Riiiiiiip~

Shing!

The sounds of metal clashing and fighting could be heard in a dark cave somewhere in the depths of Dark Forest. Dessa Chimes was wielding her Autumn Saver and could be seen fighting dozens of mysterious creatures. These creatures looked like naked humanoids made of darkness. They had eerily glowing green eyes.

A bright white atmosphere surrounded the treasure sword Autumn Saver as it continually slashed out with battle force! After cutting one of the creatures in half and parrying another, Dessa ran towards a cave wall. When the mob cornered her in pursuit, she ran up the wall of the cave and back flipped over them, landing four meters away. She was sweating and breathing heavily, quickly retreating down the nearest tunnel.

“I can’t keep fighting those things, Saver! There’s too many, and some of them even have 6 bp!” whined Dessa Chimes.

“Yes… child…but most have… around 2 or 3 bp. A little danger… in exchange for some purity isn’t bad… right?” responded Autumn Saver via telepathy. Dessa channeled some true essence into Autumn Saver, who couldn’t speak well otherwise, “These are merely low-level Fiends, Goons. You have nothing to fear, they simply can’t kill you with their strength. Unless a Bully shows up, you’ll be fine.”

“No, there is like 30 of those things left! I killed at least 12, I don’t want to do this anymore, help me leave!” demanded Dessa Chimes. Killing fiends with heavenly energies would allow one purify their tainted fiend force into pure force, this was something Dessa had learned first from Autumn Saver and then again from Mr. Jupiter. Killing and refining fiends was the quickest way for a Saint or Reaper Saint to comprehend higher levels of pure or tainted force.

“So then what? You would leave your little boyfriend and master?” Autumn Saver seemed to be sneering.

“Him?” Dessa blanked for a moment after hearing the word ‘master’ and abruptly stopped running. This word used to cause her to feel shame, rage, and melancholy. However, it currently filled her with warmth, pride, and courage!

“If it’s him, he’d never run right?”
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Meanwhile…

— Pangaea, West Ward, Saint Anubis City

At a secluded corner in the lower districts of Saint Anubis City, three men were wearing black hooded robes that magically hid their faces. They sat at a table in the back corner of a run down pub.

“Little uncle, I owe you my sincerest apology. We simply had no idea such a sinister illusion formation was in the palace. Our moment has been stolen from us, and I won’t hide it from you; I fear we’ve been betrayed,” said the gruff voice of one of the two men on the left in low tones. The majesty in his hushed voice was impossible to hide.

“There is no need to doubt this, great sage nephew. How could this possibly happen if he didn’t know everything in detail? We’ve been made, and I know who did it,” said the man on the right grimly. However, before the other two men could interrupt he continued, “Less of this, my friends. Ultimately, our objective has been 70% achieved. His guard will be lowered, while we can finally start phase three.”

“I am cognizant of this, little uncle. However, for the loss of your son I am truly remorseful,” said the gruff voice of the man on the left. He sounded heavily melancholic.

“As am I, young lord, please forgive us,” said the older voice of the other man.

“…,” the man on the right was quiet for a moment before finally responding, “You two speak as if the boy has already perished. Is there something I need to know?”

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“Sage nephew how…” the man with the gruff voice was speechless.

“With all due respect young lord, if he has not been found by now on our side, he has likely been found on the other,” the older voice immediately uttered the words that the other man didn’t want to say.

“This is not the case. Do you believe that only White Demon can infiltrate, while we cannot? About the boy…” As the younger man neared the end of his sentence, he heavily sighed, “He has a tough life and noble blood. His destiny is far higher than any of ours. For Gaea’s sake, the spectacle he caused almost shattered years of careful planning! At the same time, had it not been for the boy we would have genuinely been ambushed!

“Communications were sabotaged, defenses had been tampered with, we were almost caught with our pants completely down!” The man’s voice had slight trepidation as he reminisced. “Then right out of my shadow, he warned me of the danger himself. Using the Five Element Wolf Pack as a distraction, he single-handedly located and rescued his mother from the enemy camp, delivering her directly to myself.

“To top it all off, in that final moment where I noticed his shadow had been sealed, I thought his death was assured! Yet, when seemingly no one could help him he managed to escape on his own. Using a method we can’t even comprehend, no less. That area still suffers from spatial distortions, a full year later! That boy is an enigma. We don’t know what has happened to him, but I’m sure he will live well. Now that things have come to this… I think it’s best that he is away.”

The young man’s voice was heavily pained. Deep in his heart, he knew that he could never offer that child any proper explanation for what was happening. He found himself quite relieved that his son was missing, in spite of himself. They were playing a dirty and dangerous game, but this had to be done! That monster must be destroyed, no matter the price!

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Would his boy grow to hate him once he learned the truth?

Perhaps.

Merely, this was the closest he had ever been to achieving his aim! The closest he would ever be to destroying that evil plague to the continent.

He regretted nothing.

“…Fine,” said the gruff and majectic voice of the other gentleman, “Let us discuss the next steps.”

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