Chapter 85: Fourth To The Throne

“Boss, someone is trying to take me away!” Xu San cried over a call.

“I’ve informed the Empire about your situation,” Lu Yin explained, “You can go through formcast remodeling like Zhang Dingtian and the others; you’ll have to depend on yourself in the future.”

Outside the Zishan Palace, Xu San carefully swallowed his saliva as he recalled the scene of Zhang Dingtian’s suffering, “Formcast remodeling? Boss, I wouldn’t dare.”

“Haha. Who asked you to absorb energy crystals before you met me? But then, you wouldn’t have unlocked your innate gift. Alright, work hard and you might compare to Dingtian and the rest in the future,” he laughed and hung up. Now, everyone from Earth had found their own home here, where they could forge their futures from. As for himself, he had to get stronger quickly; Astral-10 would arrive anytime. With his current power, it would be difficult for him to enter.

There was an entire training facility in the Zishan Residence, but it was a shame that Lu Yin was alone. He entered the gravity training room and turned it up to 40x by habit, directly crushing a cube of star crystals and starting practice on the Daynight Punch and Skybeast Claw. Most people weren’t so extravagant as to use star energy for training like this, but to him it was a trifle.

……

Lu Yin didn’t step out of his residence for seven consecutive days, and many guessed that he had been berated by the Emperor. At the end of that week, Zhang Dingtian arrived at the second ring around the Zenyu Star where the Thirteen Imperial Squadrons were stationed. He looked up at a giant 5 as his identity was verified, quickly being led into the Fifth Squadron’s camp. There were innumerable auras surging around him that could all crush him with ease, but he maintained a steady gaze.

The Thirteen Imperial Squadrons were the most powerful faction within the Great Yu Empire, and every official member was a Melder at a minimum. Each squadron had multiple Explorers, and the Cruisers in charge represented the peak of the Empire’s prowess. The Fifth Captain was Huo Qingshan, a man who had once ventured into the Innerverse alongside The Undying Yushan. He was also the Huo Family’s patriarch, Xiaoling’s father.

Zhang Digtian was brought below an enormous volcano that was constantly rumbling, lava shooting into the sky like fireworks before crashing down and melting into the earth. He remained motionless as a molten rock shot towards him, guaranteed to crush and melt him to ashes if they touched. Just before the heat could burn him, however, it was suddenly absorbed by a terrifying voice, “You come from Earth?”

Zhang Dingtian was forced back and his skin had already been singed, but he showed no fear, “Yes.”

“Why did you step out?”

“To become stronger.”

“You will die.”

“Remaining a weakling is a more tragic fate than death!” he howled under the pressure, his legs almost unable to withstand it any longer. Even his clothes were being burned off.

“You will join the Fifth Squadron from today, and you will be under me. I’m Huo Qingshan.” These words pushed the Bladesage over the edge. He spat out a mouthful of blood and fell to the ground.

Within the volcano, a middle-aged man opened his eyes to look at his new subordinate. His hair was even redder than the lava around, and while he’d seemed milder in court, it was here that he revealed his scorching heat.

……

Elsewhere in the second ring, Bai Xue was brought into the Sixth Squadron that was entirely different from the Fifth. A majority of the people here were girls, and the environment was graceful and pretty, filled with all sorts of fragrant pink plants. Bai Xue hadn’t expected to enter such a place at all, and assessed her surroundings curiously.

Peach walked out with a tall woman several meters behind her, floating up when she was ten meters away herself and looking at Bai Xue curiously, “You must be Bai Xue, King Zishan’s friend?”

“Yes!” Bai Xue hurriedly saluted.

The girl nodded in satisfaction, “You really are beautiful. Alright, you’ll be a part of my squadron from today. Remember to use my name if anyone bullies you, the great Captain Peach!”

Bai Xue was stunned. This was the Sixth Captain? A cute little girl? It couldn’t be! She suddenly felt like she’d embarked on a hopeless adventure.

“Why, you aren’t willing?” Peach’s displeased voice rang out behind her, and her gaze narrowed even as her head shot around in an instant. She then bobbed between Peach’s current location and the old one, where a phantom image still existed. Why hadn’t it vanished yet?

Peach smiled craftily, “Now you see, even space itself can’t react to my speed. It’s only going now.”

Bai Xue stared dazedly at the phantom that started to dissipate. She couldn’t understand how this happened, but she knew that it was terrifying. “Yes, Captain!”

Peach smiled.

……

In an isolated section of the second ring, the barracks of the Eleventh Squadron was witnessing a strange scene. The Blind Monk and Seruzen sat opposite each other without speaking a single word, simply looking at each other without end. Many were sending furtive glances at the accursed place; they’d thought their captain was scary, but Seruzen was even worse. This was their first time seeing someone beat the Blind Monk in appearance. That withered arm was just too awesome, how many years had it been raised?

Within the Seventh Squadron’s grounds, a panicked Xu San was observing his surroundings as he thought, ‘Boss, it’s too scary! I don’t want to stay here, take me away!

……

Seven days had passed by the time Lu Yin left the Zishan Residence, heading out at night to balance work with rest. He had noticed that the gravity rooms weren’t great for training his battle techniques, especially the Daynight Punch. Such things didn’t just improve with practice; they needed a comprehension of the cycle of day and night.

Not far from the Zishan Residence was a bar. It wasn’t the largest of establishments, but it was quite refined. Lu Yin heard cheers and merriment as he walked in, with many youths dancing to their hearts’ content. He hadn’t taken more than a few steps before he decided to leave, turned off by the clamor.

Lu Yin didn’t know where to go after he walked out, but a man approached and bowed, “Your Majesty, His Highness invites you for some wine.”

He followed the man’s gaze to a small open-air tavern some distance from the bar, where Second Prince Duque raised his glass. He was amazed by the coincidence and nodded, “Sure.”

The small tavern was much simpler in appearance than the bar, with the cold winds blowing over from the distance. Duque was eating and drinking by himself; had he not seen this personally, Lu Yin wouldn’t believe that the Second Prince would come to such a place.

“You seem to be doing well, Brother,” he greeted, not standing on ceremony as he took a seat opposite Duque and poured himself a glass of wine.

Duque smiled, “Never thought I’d bump into you when I came out to drink. You don’t like the bar?”

Lu Yin shook his head, “Too noisy. It’s more comfortable here, a glass of warm wine for the cold winds, and a variety of small delicacies.”

“I was a little afraid that you wouldn’t like it. This tavern’s boss was a stowaway from a primal planet with no special abilities, but his wines are in a league of their own. You should try,” the Prince raised his glass in toast.

Lu Yin pursed his lips after a mouthful. He honestly wasn’t a wine expert, but the glass flowed smoothly down his throat and quenched thirst without any parching. While it was obviously a warming wine, a refreshing chill rushed to his head. “It’s good.”

“So long as you don’t hate it,” Duque smiled, pouring another glass.

“So how come you’re drinking here?” Lu Yin asked.

“Tired,” Duque shook his head. While astonished, Lu Yin kept silent until he drank another mouthful and continued, “Squabbling over the throne is exhausting.”

Lu Yin nearly choked on the wine and stared at Duque in shock; this was too direct! The Prince laughed, “What, first time hearing this?”

Lu Yin couldn’t help a laugh, “It really is. You’re as forward as they come.”

“You’re not the only one I’ve said this to. In fact, I even said this to Royal Father,” Duque’s lips curled, leaving Lu Yin stunned. Was the fight for the throne so open? With his understanding of Earth’s history, contests over the throne were always cruel, with constant politics and treachery. He had never seen someone like Duque who was so direct, leaving him wondering how big this brother’s heart was.

“The Empire is huge, containing others with the royal blood, the Thirteen Squadrons, Yu Academy, and so many other powers. Everyone is focused on the throne, focused on us. There are currently four people who can vie for it; Elder Brother is the closest, but there are always some people who don’t want to see his ascension. Many of them support me, like Sicar. There are others who support Wendy, but pity; her aspirations aren’t limited to the Great Yu Empire anymore,” Duque said matter-of-factly.

“You said four people, who’s the last?” Lu Yin was curious. He only knew three of The Undying Yushan’s children; Dorren, Duque, and Fifth Princess Wendy. Who was the fourth?

Duque stared him straight in the eye, “You.”

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OMA's Thoughts

Translated By: Choco

Edited By: Theo

TLC'ed By: OMA