Book 8, Chapter 16

Entering A Divine Kingdom

It didn’t take long before the portal was in the final phase of testing. The grand mages working on it weren’t his subordinates, but came from the others in Dragon Valley and had volunteered to help. A portal to a divine kingdom was a rare chance at improving one’s own understanding of space, so they had been eager to join in on the construction.

As Richard watched the busy mages quietly, Nasia had appeared by his side at some point, “You’ve made your decision?”

He nodded without a word.

“Runai has a lot of divine force, don’t count on the law suppression being weak.”

“Isn’t it a rare opportunity to experience a full suppression of my laws?”

“Sigh, there’s that ambition again. You just became a legend and you already want to fight epics.”

Richard’s gaze cut through the space before him, “No, this isn’t ambition. I… I can’t explain what I’m feeling, but I know that I don’t have much time left. Everything here, this glory, peace, and security… it’s all an illusion. There’s something far behind the silence that’s leaving me uneasy… afraid.”

Nasia stared him in the eye for a full minute before shaking her head, “Then go. Do you need King of War?”

“No, I want to experience actual suppression.”

“Well then… just come back alive.”

He didn’t know how to respond to that for a moment, but then he smiled, “Of course! I haven’t gone completely crazy.”

Just as he was about to leave, Nasia took out a piece of paper and handed it to him, “Sign this first.”

“Hmm?” he took a look, finding that it was basically a will that gave her control over all of his resources, “What’s this?”

“Even if you die, I want all my offerings,” she replied.

Richard immediately burst into laughter, signing it quickly before returning it to her, “But you won’t have the chance to use it!”

Nasia shrugged, “Who knows?”

At this point, he knew to never argue with her if he could avoid it. Stepping into the portal, he felt himself being pulled towards the divine kingdom.

When the lines of magic light dissipated, Richard found himself faced with a scenery that was rather strange. He was on a mountain forest, and in the distance he could see the greenery topped with clumps of red and yellow trees that dyed the world in a sea of brilliant colours. The sky was light blue with ribbons of all colours floating around it, illuminating the equally-colourful ground below.

However, before he had the chance to examine the beauty before him, his body lurched forward and he nearly lost balance. It suddenly felt like several tonnes of rocks had been placed on his back, a scorching pain running throughout his body as though he had been immersed in acid. He cast Thunder Fort immediately with a thought, the grade 8 spell barely managing to neutralise the discomfort.

During the process, he discovered something rather interesting. Within the laws of the divine kingdom, there seemed to be no difference between different types of defences. So long as one’s barrier was of a certain level, be if physical or magical, regardless of the element, it would work.

“Welcome to my kingdom, Your Grace,” the voice of the Forest Goddess rang out. 

Richard stood up straight, but the simple movement caused his bones to creak under the strain. Faint light shot out from his eyes as he activated Field of Truth, revealing specks of green divine force all around him filled with vitality. A few chains that came from nowhere were wound around him and weighing him down, which was why he felt like lead.

This was the true face of the suppression of a divine kingdom. With a single thought, a god could turn divine force into the most damaging of poisons. Under this powerful force, Richard immediately lost a third of his strength and became weaker than even a sky saint. It was no wonder that even Norland’s legends did their best to refrain from fighting in divine kingdoms.

“This is how much I can suppress you,” the goddess continued, “Runai’s power is much more powerful than mine, and the suppression will be stronger as well. Have you thought this through?”

“Give me a few minutes,” Richard said as he sat down, closing his eyes and starting to analyse how his combat would be affected amidst the suppression. A short while later, he got up and ambled down the mountain he was on, gait as natural as the flow of water without any hint of being affected by the suppression.

Sounds of shock rang in the sky as the three goddesses talked endlessly, unable to believe what they had just seen. Divine force surged nearby and revealed a stunning woman in long green robes with golden eyes and a divine mark between her brows. This was the Goddess of the Forest, but all Richard could see with the Field of Truth active was an enormous ball of divine force. “Please come with me, Your Grace. The passage is this way.”

The portal to Runai’s kingdom was located in the middle sections of the mountain, right above the dense part of the woods. They had to cover nearly a hundred kilometres, but with the goddess taking the lead it was quickly done.

In front of the portal was a vast staging area where endless legions of armed divine soldiers were entering in order. Even from a distance they looked like an endless tide, as numerous as the trees in the forest. There were two giant portals facing the divine passage, and groups of hundreds walked through every few minutes. These soldiers had different weapons and armour, with even their auras being distinct. They belonged to the other two goddesses, grouping up here before they entered the passage.

The two other goddesses appeared by Richard’s side as well. It was rare for deities to enter their peers’ kingdoms no matter how close they were, but Richard had catalysed the relationship of these three into something far more stable than a mere alliance. The goddesses each took out large crystals and placed them in his hands, the crystals dissolving into light that entered his body.

“This is the crystallisation of our divine force; it can help you resist any direct attacks from Runai for some time,” the Goddess of Spring Water explained.

Richard nodded, “Okay, I’m going.”

He took to the skies and flew towards the divine passage, the soldiers at the front moving aside to open up a path.

Just before he entered the passage that was a hundred metres tall, Richard suddenly paused and looked down below. His gaze seemed to pierce through the divine kingdoms and fall to Faelor’s mainland down below, searching for the source of a frail heartbeat that he had heard amidst the clamour. That heart was pulsing ever so softly, but it resonated with his very soul.

For a moment, he felt an emotion he never had before. As best he could describe it, it was a strange combination of satisfaction, anxiety, emptiness, and even a bit of fear. He just couldn’t tell what it was meant to be. However, he examined himself carefully and chuckled, his aura immediately blasting out as he found the source before entering the passage.

At the other end was a battlefield with hundreds of thousands of divine soldiers, each fighting fearlessly for their deity. Souls constantly flew into the sky up above, returning to their own divine kingdoms where they would be given new bodies to enter the battlefield once more. This war would only end when one side exhausted all of its divine power.

The moment he walked out, Richard felt a huge tremor under his feet. A thunderous boom drowned out everything in Runai’s divine kingdom, the top of a distant mountain breaking away and floating into the distance. Specks of flickering starlight could be seen in the air, and the Field of Truth managed to trace them to their source: the crystal sphere surrounding the divine kingdom.

The detached mountain headed straight for the walls, but instead of an impact it passed right through before starting to shatter. The hard rock immediately scattered like powder, the grains being divided into smaller and smaller parts until he couldn’t see them at all anymore. Richard suddenly realised that this was complete annihilation; the mountain had been wholly unable to withstand the energy storm of the void!

As he took the first step into the battlefield, the scenery warped as the figures of the fighting soldiers blurred. Those that were far away seemed right next to him, while those nearby disappeared from sight. His sense of distance was completely destroyed.

“A mere mortal dares enter my kingdom?!” Runai’s roar resounded through the sky, a powerful conscient descending from the skies to attack. Richard immediately felt like he had been struck by a boulder, his knees going weak and almost giving way completely.

White light shot through the skies and illuminated his body, his skin starting to boil like acid had been poured upon it while emitting white gas. However, just as his knees were about to touch the ground, he snorted and all his joints crackled violently, three hearts pumping as hard as they could. Strength that had been hidden away for the longest time was called upon once more as his body shook off the suppression, slowly bringing him back to his feet.

Richard turned to look at the highest mountain in the divine kingdom, his lips curving into a disdainful and provocative sneer. Up there was the Goddess of Time herself, true form glaring at him with ire and rage.

Runai was a true god. Even if she only belonged to a secondary plane, she was still a personification of laws. He laughed, his elegant demeanour fading away into zeal and bloodthirst. Standing up straight right under her gaze, Richard stretched a little and walked towards the frontlines while leaving three-coloured light in his wake. The suppression seemed to lose all effects.

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Gem

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA