Book 20, The Crown’s Riddle – Chapter 44, Whither To?
The other eight Paragons looked at each other. Then, by unspoken agreement, they moved back some distance, watching amusedly as this placed out.
“Why has the Chief Sovereign of Light sent a projection clone over here?” Dunnington sent to the other Paragons.
“He probably isn’t willing to accept the results.” Nanessa sent to the others.
“After I acquired the red caltrop diamond, the Chief Sovereign of Light entered chaotic space and had been hastening here this entire time. He’s probably utterly irritated right now.” Clementine sent back with a smirk.
Although on the surface, the Paragons behaved with courtesy, in their hearts, they still felt disdainful towards some Sovereigns.
Paragons had become Paragons through ability.
Sovereigns? Luck was what mattered in being able to acquire a Sovereign spark. As Paragons saw it, most Sovereigns were just born earlier in the universe and were a bit luckier.
“Everyone, do you think that Linley will trample all over the Chief Sovereign of Light’s projection clone?” The Paragon of Water, the chubby-faced man, sent mentally.
“I don’t think so. Although this is just a projection clone, it’s the projection clone of the Chief Sovereign. If Linley were to do something, he would be giving the Chief Sovereign no face. To end up at loggerheads against a Chief Sovereign isn’t good.” The Paragon of Fire, Ballmer, sent back.
The Chief Sovereign of Light’s Sovereign body wasn’t able to enter the Okerlund Plane as well. This was just a planar projection clone. Planar projection clones contained just the barest wisp of the mind of the Sovereign. Projection clones were simply created by that wisp, with power borrowed from the Sovereign.
Planar projection clones understood the profound mysteries, but they didn’t possess the power of Will!
“Although this is the projection clone of the Chief Sovereign, the projection clone doesn’t have the power of Will. In terms of power, it is just on par with an ordinary Lord Prefect.” Linley didn’t feel worried at all about this ‘Chief Sovereign of Light’ before him. This was just a planar projection clone; it was no match for a Paragon, much less Linley.
The enormous planar projection clone stared coldly at Linley.
“Clementine, how did this red caltrop diamond end up being taken by Linley?” The planar projection clone looked at Clementine.
Clementine immediately laughed sourly. “Chief Sovereign, you have no idea what level Linley’s power has reached. He isn’t just a Highgod Paragon; his body is definitely on the level of Hemmers and Beirut, comparable to a Sovereign artifact. His material attacks are tens of times more powerful than mine; perhaps even a hundred. There was nothing I could do!”
“How can that be?” The Chief Sovereign of Light stared towards Linley in astonishment.
In recorded history, not a single supreme expert whose body was comparable to a Sovereign artifact was able to become a Paragon.
“This is true.” The Paragon of Fire, Ballmer, laughed. “We personally witnessed it. And not just that; in terms of speed as well, he vastly outstrips us. Clementine wasn’t even able to flee. He had no other choice…he had to hand over the red caltrop diamond.”
The Chief Sovereign of Light looked at Linley.
“Chief Sovereign, dare I ask, can I leave now?” Linley asked.
“You want to leave?” The Chief Sovereign of Light let out a cold snort, but unfortunately, this was just a planar projection clone. The Chief Sovereign of Light was only able to talk right now.
Bebe, by Linley’s side, spoke out irritably. “Chief Sovereign, the fight over the red caltrop diamond in the material plane is a matter for us Deities. Here in the material plane, we fought over it fairly, and the strongest ended up taking it. My Boss now holds it, so naturally it belongs to my Boss. Chief Sovereign, why have you sent a planar projection clone over here? Do you want to threaten my Boss?”
An ugly look was on the Chief Sovereign of Light’s face.
He was indeed in the wrong in this matter!
The other eight Paragons all had Sovereigns behind them. The struggle in the Okerlund Plane was a struggle for Deities; the Sovereigns shouldn’t interfere.
If he were to intervene and threaten Linley, what if the other Sovereigns did the same? How would the Paragons be supposed to act?
“Linley.” The Chief Sovereign of Light suppressed the anger in his heart as he looked at Linley. “I know that Dunnington was sent by the Chief Sovereign of Destruction. You, then, shouldn’t have been. Perhaps the Redbud Sovereign is your backer. How about this. You hand the red caltrop diamond to me! As for the Redbud Sovereign, I will speak to her on your behalf. If you give it to me, it can be said that I’ll owe you a favor. What do you say?”
If he couldn’t use hard tactics, he would try soft ones.
“A favor?” Linley was about to say something, but suddenly…
“Haha, Augusta, your methods aren’t very good.” A deep, sonorous voice rang out, and an enormous surge of energy once more descended from the heavens. Unlike the light energy, this surge of energy was completely black and seemed to be filled with a murderous aura. It was Destruction-type Sovereign power. And then, it solidified into a blurry figure.
The Chief Sovereign of Light, seeing the situation, couldn’t help but frown.
“The Chief Sovereign of Destruction.” Linley mused to himself.
“Linley. I notified the Chief Sovereign of Destruction.” Dunnington sent.
Linley also knew that these Paragons all had methods by which they could communicate with the Sovereigns who stood behind them.
“Linley and I are engaging in free-willed negotiations. What right do you have to stop us?” The Chief Sovereign of Light said.
“Haha…” The Chief Sovereign of Destruction let out a clear laugh. “How can you call this ‘free will’? You are oppressing him with your power. You, Chief Sovereign of Light are verbally asking Linley to do this. But if I were to do the same? If the Chief Sovereign of Life, the Chief Sovereign of Death, the Chief Sovereign of Darkness, and the other Chief Sovereigns all acted in this matter? Tell me, how could Linley choose?”
The Chief Sovereign of Light didn’t make another sound.
His sudden manifestation of a projection clone had given others an excuse to point at the error in his actions.
Actually, the reason he had done this was because he had believed that this item was already his. He had travelled such a long distance in chaotic space, and yet, he suddenly learned that his item had gone missing. Naturally, the Chief Sovereign of Light had been enraged and, in his anger, allowed a planar projection clone to descend.
“This ‘Chief Sovereign’ isn’t much better than an ordinary person.” Bebe sent mentally to Linley.
“Naturally. A Chief Sovereign is just a living creature who, after becoming a Highgod, was lucky enough to acquire a Sovereign spark then fuse with it, thus becoming a Sovereign. Just because they fused with Sovereign sparks doesn’t mean that their temperaments will change! Normally, these Sovereigns act high and mighty when dealing with us Deities; naturally, they can’t be bothered with us. This is a way of showing their superiority! But once there is a struggle that involves their own interests, such as this struggle over the Overgod talismans, their greedy or tyrannical natures will once more reveal themselves.” Linley sent back.
“This Chief Sovereign of Light really is tyrannical.” Bebe, after having met the Chief Sovereign of Light several times, couldn’t help but come to this judgement.
“The Chief Sovereign of Light is overbearing, but he always has been. Even Patriarch Gislason told me about this.” Linley still remembered the words Gislason had said to him.
Gislason even suspected that the four ancestors of the Four Divine Beasts clan had been killed by the Chief Sovereign of Light. He had also described the Chief Sovereign of Light’s overbearing nature.
While Linley and Bebe were chatting spiritually, the Chief Sovereigns of Light and Destruction were chatting as well.
“Fine. Neither of us will force Linley. Linley will choose for himself, who he wishes to offer the red caltrop diamond to.” The Chief Sovereign of Light couldn’t help but look at Linley.
“Linley, you can choose for yourself which Sovereign you wish to offer it to. You don’t have to take any attitude from any Sovereign. After all, there’s only a single red caltrop diamond, while there are tens of Sovereigns!” The Chief Sovereign of Destruction looked towards Linley.
The Chief Sovereign of Light stared at Linley, his eyes containing a silent signal.
“Sorry, Chief Sovereign of Light.” Linley smiled.
The Chief Sovereign of Light’s face immediately changed.
“Hmph. You don’t know what’s good for you.” The Chief Sovereign of Light gave Linley a cold glance, and then his planar projection clone suddenly disappeared. Linley’s face, however, didn’t change. He stood there quietly in midair, and his face once more had a hint of a smile on it.
“Haha, Linley, well done.” The Chief Sovereign of Destruction laughed easily. “You can choose who to give this red caltrop diamond to. Naturally, giving it to me would be good, but I won’t force you.” And then, the Chief Sovereign of Destruction’s planar projection clone suddenly disappeared as well.
The world once more returned to normalcy.
The waves of the sea continued to swell forward, and the other eight Paragons flew over, laughing.
“Haha, Boss, that Chief Sovereign of Light’s face just now was so amusing.” Bebe celebrated.
“I already offended the Chief Sovereign of Light once. Now, I’ve offended him again.” Linley sighed helplessly.
“That’s the sort of temper the Chief Sovereign of Light has.” Clementine laughed. While speaking, Clementine stretched his divine sense out to close off the surrounding area. Clearly, he didn’t want the other Highgods to hear the words between them Paragons.
“Hmph. That group of Sovereigns. Don’t be fooled by that superior attitude they always have. When any minor matter occurs that they care about, or even something that costs them the tiniest bit of face, they will be enraged.” The Paragon of Fire, Ballmer, snickered. “Actually, it’s understandable. They are so high and lofty that if anyone was to irritate them, they would probably let their fury descend upon the offender.”
“However, only a minority of Sovereigns are so bad-tempered.” Dunnington said with a smile. “The majority of Sovereigns are decent fellows.”
“Hmph. They were simply born earlier, shortly after the planes were formed. They were just one of the first batches of Highgods, then were lucky enough to acquire Sovereign sparks and fuse them.” The Paragon of Life said calmly. “In terms of the profound laws, the vast majority of Sovereigns are inferior to us, even though they enjoy vast amounts of faith energy!”
“I’ve seen quite a few Sovereigns, but the Chief Sovereign of Light is still the most overbearing of them all.” Linley said.
“Haha, the Chief Sovereign of Light is legendary for his overbearing manner. Even in material planes, amongst the various churches, the churches of light tend towards total hegemony. However, the Chief Sovereign of Light is powerful; he’s qualified to act so tyrannically!” The Paragon of Earth, that four meter tall azure-haired fellow, laughed.
“The Bonerock Sovereign of Death, before the previous Planar War which occurred countless years before, personally attacked a pair of commander-level experts.”
This group of Highgod Paragons leisurely chatted about the various Sovereigns.
This was a material plane; there was no need to fear that the Sovereigns would discover it through divine sense.
After chatting for a long time, Linley learned quite a few things regarding the Sovereigns. The more he heard, the more clearly Linley felt that the Sovereigns were nothing special; they, too, felt joy, rage, grief, and amusement. It was much like how…to mortals, Deities were creatures who were far above them. But in the Infernal Realm, Deities formed into bandit groups and acted in ways that were even more nakedly selfish and aggressive than in the mortal world.
Only the four Overgods who were the personifications of the Edicts were truly emotionless and unfeeling.
“Alright, everyone. The matter here in Okerlund Plane has come to an end. I’ll leave now.” The Paragon of Wind, Bayer, laughed.
After this friendly discussion, all of the people present had grown much closer to each other.
“Let’s leave together. We need to leave as well.”
Dunnington and the other Paragons were nearby as well.
“Boss, time to leave.” Bebe said hurriedly.
“Everyone, you can leave first. I have something to take care of.” Linley suddenly said.
The eight Paragons, although puzzled, didn’t say anything. They bid Linley farewell, and then the eight of them began to fly towards the Fogdeep continent.
“Boss, what is it?” Bebe said.
Linley frowned as he sent with worry, “Bebe, when I acquired the red caltrop diamond, I was too excited. I didn’t think about things in detail. But now…now that I’ve calmed down, I’ve realized that I absolutely cannot go back through the teleportation arrays!”
“Can’t go back through the teleportation arrays?” Bebe stared.
“Right. The teleportation arrays will take me to the Divine Planes or the Higher Planes. You should know that the Sovereigns all very much want to acquire the red caltrop diamond. In the Okerlund Plane, they aren’t able to fight with me at all. However, if I teleport to a Divine Plane or a Higher Plane, then perhaps I’ll find…that a Sovereign will be there at the array, waiting for me!” Linley laughed sourly.
If, as soon as he teleported somewhere, he immediately saw a Sovereign…
He would be finished. There would be no chance of escape.
“Each of the planes have a varying number of teleportation arrays. The Infernal Realm has many, but the Netherworld only has two teleportation array locations. There are, however, quite a few Sovereigns in the Higher Planes and Divine Planes. The chances of one of them lying in wait are quite high! Even if Lesser Sovereigns have no need for it, they might give it to a Chief Sovereign so as to gain a favor.” Linley felt quite frustrated.
“Boss, where should we go, then?” Bebe now knew that the situation was, indeed, terrible.
“Right. Where shall we go?” Linley felt completely lost.
It was true that the Seven Divine Planes and Four Higher Planes had many teleportation locations, some of which wouldn’t have Sovereigns nearby. But Linley couldn’t take the risk! If he failed, he wouldn’t even have the chance to feel regret.
“I’ve acquired the red caltrop diamond, but I don’t know how to return to the Yulan Plane.” Linley laughed bitterly.
“Can it be that we’ll have to take the chance?” Bebe muttered.