From the Voight Domain to the Celestial Church, from the Celestial Church to the Infernal Cult, the breeze of silence blew. And if only for an instant, none dared make a noise.
Although for the leaders of the two religious factions, the battle's level was by no means startling, the implications were dreadful. Meanwhile, the weakest elders didn't doubt they wouldn't have fared any better than Bayiz and Erhardt did.
Worse, because of timing and distance, they didn't have the opportunity to analyze Konrad's Pure Self while his Transformation Skill made them unable to grasp his cultivation level.
Therefore, a plethora of questions spread within the minds of protectors, elders, and leaders.
Who was that youth? What was his cultivation level? Where did he hail from?
"His last ability and final strike were oddly similar to the Ravmalakh's Ancestral Glory. Though there are substantial differences, their lineage is definitely connected. But at the same time, his current form bears a striking resemblance to titans'.
What is he? A new kind of hybrid?"
The Celestial Church Leader wondered, but quickly dismissed the idea. While a hybridism between deva and humans wasn't impossible, if the two bloodlines were of the same level, the result would be, at best, a cripple. At worst, a stillborn.
Ravmalakhs and titans were at the same level. A functional child of the two was unlikely. Moreover, titans were reclusive individuals that never mixed with other races. They took their race's purity even more seriously than many high-ranking devas and demons.
How could such a breach occur?
"Can someone tell me when this creature appeared within our world?"
The Infernal Cult Leader asked his elder council. None had an answer to provide and turned their eyes toward the third elder whose son was one of the victims.
The Kurul soul fiends ranked fourth among the infernal cult's houses. Their patriarch always held high positions. The third elder was the contemporary Kurul patriarch, an early-stage Divine Transformation expert. With his status and strength, to see his eldest son charred in such a callous manner was absolutely unbearable. However, he could only restrain himself.
First, his house was never supposed to be there. Hastily stepping into the Celestial Church's territory could end up hastening the Holy War. At worst, this was a crime that would bring house Kurul many sanctions.
Second, someone else had yet to show his stance.
And indeed, in a twister of golden light, an olive-skinned middle-aged man appeared on the scene.
Seeing him, the Infernal Cult Leader's lips curled into a smile.
"Great elder, welcome. Can you explain the meaning of…this?"
The Infernal Cult Leader asked while aiming his finger at the image of Bayiz's charred body.
The Infernal Cult's great elder, Berken Serkar cast a brief glance at the image, then took his great elder seat.
"Bayiz acted on his own, and poached clan experts to indulge in personal vices. That is his first crime.
Second, without the higher-up's approval, he dared stir trouble within the Celestial Church's territory, disregarding his status as an infernal protector.
Third, and most important of all, he lost. With those three crimes, he deserves to be damned, and I will not intervene in this matter. Cult leader, feel free to handle it as you please."
Berken declared with a calm and indifferent tone, then closed his eyes. His words startled the other elders who didn't expect such a cold stance.
The Infernal Cult Leader nodded in approval.
"Berken, I've always said that though human, you are a better blood fiend than many of my kin. When we ascend to the Infernal Realm, you should let go of lord Talroth, and embrace the thigh of lord Ashara."
The Infernal Cult leader coolly advised, his tone leaving no insight on his real thoughts.
"Third elder, what about you?"
The inquiry took the third elder aback. Unlike Berken, he cared very much for his son's life, and certainly wouldn't allow him to face mishap. Alas, although he ranked among the mightiest experts of the Infernal Cult, compared to the likes of Berken and the Cult Leader, his strength was negligible.
Without delay, he dropped on his knees and bowed with clasped hands.
"Cult leader, first, although my son and Bayiz Serkar are guilty and deserve to be punished. It is the Infernal Cult that should administrate the punishment. Allowing outsiders to sentence them in our stead is an insult to the Infernal Cult's dignity.
Second, that youth's background is doubtful. Perhaps he's a Celestial Realm deva summoned by the Celestial Church to tackle us during the Holy War. Perhaps he's a remnant of the Celestial Founder's bloodline we knew nothing of.
But if he were, why is he standing against the Celestial Church's prime disciple?
In one case or another, we must investigate him and grasp the full picture. Otherwise, variables are bound to arise.
And regardless of his true cultivation, if the strength he displayed is the limit, we only need to dispatch several elders to deal with him. I'm willing to personally lead my clan's elders to probe his depth and remove a potential scourge!"
The third elder solemnly offered, and hearing his words, many elders were forced to agree. At the very least, they should investigate this youth's background and remove a potential hidden danger before it could blossom.
"Very well. As I recall, Gulistan should also have a presence in the Holy Continent. Have her assist you.
Great elder, any objection?"
"None whatsoever. I will make the arrangements."
Berken directly replied to the Infernal Cult Leader's inquiry then vanished in a golden haze.
Meanwhile, the Celestial Church's elder council was having a similar talk. Except that this time, the moon spirits were trying to find fault on Erhardt and create trouble for the leading sun spirits.
"Church leader, the prime disciple is rash and impetuous, his Dao Heart flawed, and his cultivation not progressing at the necessary pace. Although he's your eldest son, you can't keep indulging him in such a glaring manner. And even if you wish to, before that, you should remove his position as prime disciple.
Other, worthier candidates have risen, and are willing to fight for the spot. Please take the grand picture into account and don't hamper the next generation's development because of personal feelings."
The Celestial Church's great elder declared in an uncompromising stance. For the last three generations, the Wirth sun spirit had occupied the church leader seat, preventing the Kornberg moon spirits from having a turn.
With Erhardt's widespread debacle, the Kornberg patriarch was determined to snatch the prime disciple position for his son. In any case, he wasn't any worse than Erhardt.
"Your words are sensible. If he cannot free himself from fetters and perfect his Dao Heart, the prime disciple position should be given to a worthier candidate.
We can discuss the new options after retrieving him."
The Church leader directly replied, startling his peers.
Hence, both the Celestial Church and the Infernal Cult dispatched elders toward the Holy Continent. More precisely, toward the Voight Domain.
From the Ancient Crystal World's two highest mountain ranges, several dreadful auras erupted and shot toward the Voight Domain, the pressure surrounding them alarming the secular world.
Mortals or Saints, none could avoid shivering before such force. But Konrad whose size had been reduced to the usual 1.9 meters, welcomed them with a smile.
"Part Four: Conning."