“Elder Nether Spring and I discovered the relic of Chaos by accident when we were hunted eighty-seven years ago,” the Fire Ant King said solemnly. “After the narrow escape, we gained our fame in the Nether Spring Kingdom and began to establish our own forces.
“In the ten years that followed, Elder Nether Spring stabilized himself in the ‘demon king’ level and recruited countless subordinates.
“A demon king always has more than ten tough demon generals under their command. As for the demon soldiers who have high potential, there are too many of them to count.
“It can be seen from Jin Xinyue’s experience that, after a demon is transformed into a human being after consuming excessive Divine Blood of Chaos, their capability will not be reduced much. It will only be changed into a new form. One only needs to be adapted to the new form with new arts of training. With the appropriate training arts, their capability can be recovered very quickly.
“It means that a demon soldier can be transformed into a Cultivator in the Refinement Stage, and a demon general can be transformed into a Cultivator in the Building Foundation Stage!”
Everybody fell silent.
Although the guys around Li Yao nowadays were all top-tier experts in the demon emperor level or the Nascent Soul Stage, and he had been hunted by dozens of demon emperors more than once, it did not mean that Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators or demon emperors were cheap.
He had only gotten involved with such people because his capability was also at such a level.
As a matter of fact, in either the Heaven’s Origin Sector or the Blood Demon Sector, a Building Foundation Stage Cultivator or a demon general was already a very influential individual in society and a one-in-ten-thousand elite.
In the Star Glory Federation, the elders of many sects were in the Building Foundation Stage. A large percentage of the professors in the Nine Elite Universities were in the Building Foundation Stage, too.
For those who entered the Core Formation Stage, they were qualified to create their own sect or find their way into the leadership of the top five hundred sects of the federation.
In the federal army, Han Tuhu, a tough warrior who commanded one of the sixteen crystal suit legions, was merely at the peak of the Core Formation Stage.
If one of Elder Nether Spring’s demon generals was transformed into a Building Foundation Stage Cultivator or a demon soldier was transformed into a Refinement Stage Cultivator before they were sent to the Heaven’s Origin Sector, it would be quite possible for them to distinguish themselves after a while.
“Don’t forget one thing.”
The Fire Ant King worriedly observed, “Elder Nether Spring uncovered a lot of the relics of Chaos seventy years ago. Chances are that the secrets arts of training from forty thousand years ago were left inside.
“The Children of the Nether World that he sent to the Heaven’s Origin Sector might’ve grasped the secret arts, too. So, they must’ve been advancing at a shocking speed.
“In the eyes of other people, weren’t the ‘Cultivators’ all ‘geniuses of training’ and ‘rarely-seen treasures’ who were worth being appreciated?”
Jin Xinyue had been deep in thought all the time. After hearing that, she suddenly changed the topic, frowning. “For hundreds of years, the coalition army of demons has persisted with continentalism. The beast tides that scourged the Heaven’s Origin Sector were almost exclusively made of the Insect Clan and the Claw Clan. The Nether Spring Kingdom was the vanguard of every invasion, too. In the end, the beast tide even became a synonym for the demon race.
“The invasions were all planned by Elder Nether Spring, right?”
The twelve demon emperors were responsible for different fields. In the past, Jin Tuyi had been in charge of the universal development. That was why his voice was louder in the meeting to discuss whether or not the Eye of Blood Demon should be built.
Elder Nether Spring, on the other hand, was in charge of the probing attacks against the Heaven’s Origin Sector. It was because continentalism had been prevalent in the Blood Demon Sector in the past, too.
At least seven out of ten beast tide outbreaks had been launched by the Insect Clan of the Nether Spring Kingdom. An overwhelming ocean of insects was the first impression on the demon race for many citizens of the federation.
Deep in thought, Jin Xinyue mumbled, “It used to bother me why Elder Nether Spring attacked the Heaven’s Origin Sector without caring about the cost. Such harassing attacks were impossible to defeat the Star Glory Federation!
“Our speculation in the beginning was that he was trying to capture experiment subjects for the Demon God Virus.
“Now that I think about it, we were too simpleminded back then.
“Master, as I recall, in the Star Glory Federation, in either the circle of Cultivators or the federal army, military credit has the most importance attached to it, right?”
Li Yao nodded. “Of course. The federation has fought the demon race for five hundred years. Strength is what the nation was founded on. Military credit is highly valued in every trade, and being a federal soldier is the most respected profession! All the children have to learn fighting from young ages. Even in school, like the No. 2 Crimson Nimbus High School that I studied in, many training courses are included in the curriculum, too. It is not unusual for classmates to break each other’s hands or feet in their horseplay!
“I remember that I took part in the Limit Challenge Competition when I was only eighteen and fought against real demon beasts. A few students were killed in the battle by accident, but the Limit Challenge Competition was not called off. The only criterion to select elites is military credit!
“There’s no need to mention the federal army, where military credit certainly matters most. In Cultivation sects, even those whose main business is not hunting demon bests, earning military credit is also a top priority.
“It is because only with military credit will you get a tax reduction, have the chance for commercial bidding, and win the respect of other sects during negotiations.
“If a Cultivation sect is too busy making money inland and hasn’t been to the Grand Desolate Plateau for a long time, they will have no tax reduction, no loans from the bank, and no business dealings with other sects. Customers might even boycott the products of the sect.
“In the words of Cultivators, the brand of such sects will be tarnished!
“Therefore, all the major sects have been trying to go to the Grand Desolate Plateau in order to slay demon beasts and protect ordinary people so that they can build up the image of their sect.
“As a regular Cultivator, if you want to be appreciated by a certain sect, if you want more powerful training arts, and if you want more valuable Heavenly Materials and Earthly Treasures, you will have to exchange military credit for them!
“In that regard, it won’t help even if you are the son of the leader. The top five hundred sects of the federation are all listed. The distribution of most of the Heavenly Materials and Earthly Treasures is supervised by independent auditing agencies. Any violation of rules will be investigated by the authorities. The usage of ultimate treasures must be reflected dutifully on the quarterly report and the annual report for the interest of shareholders and ordinary investors.
“Moreover, the rights to develop the mother lodes on the Grand Desolate Plateau, to build towns, and to control certain commercial routes, those that can make a new sect rise quickly or keep an old sect thrive forever, will be allocated according to the military credit!
“With such prevailing ideologies, there is little nepotism in the noble families of the Star Glory Federation. Even if there is any, their family and sect will simply waste some money on them and consider them nonexistent. Without military credit, it is impossible to become a decision-maker in any sect!
“Of course, military credit does not necessarily mean fighting demon beasts on a battlefield. After all, not every Cultivator is good at fighting. But at the very least, they should go to the Grand Desolate Plateau and serve the people however they can. All Cultivators will work together to resist the beast tides.”
“Master,” Jin Xinyue said, “even if a Cultivator doesn’t boast an impressive familial background, they can still rise to fame quickly with tremendous military credit, right?”
Li Yao and Han Tuhu both nodded.
Capability and credit before familial background. It was one of the traditions that the Star Glory Federation was most proud of.
Jin Xinyue asked again, “Then, resisting the beast tides is the fastest way to accumulate military credit in the Star Glory Federation, right?”
“In the past century, the demons inland have mostly been eradicated,” Li Yao said. “The Grand Desolate Plateau is the only place of trouble. Of course, that is the only place you can to go if you want military credit!
“It is very risky to resist the demon beasts and to fight demons on the Grand Desolate Plateau. But the returns are promising, too. If you are still alive after a few years of fighting, you will gain enough military credit to be a well-respected hero. Your future will be nothing but bright.
“If you have the chance to kill a strong demon beast or play a key role in resisting a critical beast tide, you might become famous overnight!”
Li Yao was a perfect example himself.
When he had just learned how to wear a crystal suit, he engaged in a battle with the squad of the silver-blood demons led by Wang Ji, a young prince of the Kingdom of Lion Butchers, in the depths of Thunderous Sound Mountain. The battle had gone on for a few days, and Li Yao had returned in one piece.
The battle had made him rise to fame. The success of the Demon Beast Detector that he later invented could be partly attributed to the incident.
While talking, Li Yao suddenly trembled as he realized something.
Han Tuyi also bulged his eyes and exclaimed in a low voice.
Jin Xinyue smiled bitterly. “Master, it seems that we’ve been underestimating Elder Nether Spring this whole time. For decades, he drove the beast tides of the Elder Nether Spring to attack the Heaven’s Origin Sector insanely for much more sophisticated reasons than to capture ‘experiment subjects’ in the battle.
“First of all, the beast tides would demolish the towns on the Grand Desolate Plateau. All the identity files would be destroyed. He could even make up some false files and mix them with the real ones. In such a way, the Children of the Nether World would have legal identities to infiltrate the federation.
“The Children of the Nether World were very gifted in training and hated the demons’ guts. Under the federation’s policy, it would have been easy for them to join the federal army and the major sects.
“After they became familiarized with the new place, they would travel to the Grand Desolate Plateau and fight back the beast tides in order to gain military credit and to avenge their imaginary family. That’s very reasonable, right?
“The Children of the Nether World were demons in the first place. They knew the weaknesses and the combat patterns of the demon race. Moreover, they were perhaps communicating with Elder Nether Spring and were informed of the time and location of every beast tide.
“Hehe. Most of the beast tides were organized by Elder Nether Spring. The attacks launched by the Kingdom of Lion Butchers couldn’t have been a secret to him, either, since he was an ally.
“As long as he sent the intelligence over, wouldn’t it be hundreds of times easier for the Children of the Nether World to acquire military credit?
“Or rather, when a Child of the Nether World hit the bottleneck, Elder Nether Spring could even tailor-make a beast tide for them so that they would crush the demons and succeed in defending their home after bloody battles. Wouldn’t he be fabricating a federal hero in such a way?
“Such ‘federal heroes’ would rise much faster in the federal army and the sects than normal Cultivators, wouldn’t they?”