"With what? Another avatar? What a joke."
Konrad cut before the Ant Goddess could make another move.
"It is not that I'm looking down on you, but better than anyone, you should understand that with your current strength, at best, you will give me a run for my money. You're simply not my match.
As long as you stay sheltered by the World Tree, I can't do you much harm. But even if you dare bring out your true body, I dare slaughter you.
I'm a Primal Law Embodiment. Unless you reach True God level cultivation, fighting me…is no different from courting destruction. You know it, I know it. Therefore, you won't."
Konrad pursued, with his every word crushing the Ant Goddess' determination.
"Among the Zenith Ant leaders, you're not the first to reach Demigod-level. However, only you stand at the threshold of the first tribulation with full confidence.
Only you drained and assimilated the World Tree to this extent. Through you, this generation thrived beyond all others and stands ready to overwhelm the Ancient Crystal World. Your achievements are many and your ambitions as wild as they're limitless.
What a pity that once you step on the Demigod path, you can never become a World God. Your best bet is to use the Infernal Cult to open the gate toward the Infernal Realm and lead your people back as a True Goddess.
But even then, for the sake of self-preservation, you'd need to surrender and pledge yourself to a mighty Demon Lord, preferably, a Primogen. But you are unwilling to do so."
As Konrad's words echoed, the Ant Goddess' eyes expended while stupor distorted her face. Where was he getting all this information from? Even the highest-ranking queens didn't know that much!
"Therefore, you formulated a bold plan. And hope to use the gains from your tribulation to fully assimilate the World Tree and obtain Life Embodiment through it. Then using it as the foundation, suppress your lineage's innate, destructive tendencies and cultivate to the next rank before rising to the Infernal Realm. With those cards, you'd be able to establish yourself as a landed noble, with status, honor, army, and territory, thereby giving yourself the foundation to make your house flourish once more.
Ant Goddess, did I sum up your struggles well-enough?"
Konrad inquired, in a calm yet piercing tone that prevented the Ant Goddess from shifting her attention to her wronged daughter. And though she didn't nod, Konrad could read the answer through the frustration on her face.
"A pity that your plans are doomed to failure. Embodiment stems from the self. If you don't have the potential, even ten World Trees will not give it to you. At best, you will become a false embodiment.
Trash will be trash. Ants will be ants. Fighting you is a bore. Therefore, I will give you one chance to change your fate: The Infernal Cult.
Within the Infernal Cult lies an ancient artifact called Bloodline Deception. It has absolutely no offensive or defensive abilities and can only do one thing:
To make your lineage look exactly like another.
With it, you can deceive heaven and earth, to say nothing of the World Tree. In the early days of the Holy Wars, Marduk's demons used it to plant spies within the Celestial Church. Alas, only pureblooded demons can use it. Therefore, it now serves as a relic.
If you can make your Zenith Ant bloodline seem like a Nature Spirit's, then the World Tree will no longer reject you. Better it will help you in completing the assimilation, thereby hitting two birds with one stone."
Konrad directed with an amiable smile. But the brighter his smile was, the more vigilant the Ant Goddess became.
"I know, you wonder why I'm helping you. To be frank, you and I are not enemies. I loathe the Infernal Cult, more than I do you. If not for your reckless wastes attempting to destabilize my dynasty, and your idiotic daughter challenging my dignity, we could even be friends.
However, the things that happened did, and lessons have been taught. Why not bury the hatchet while you still can and make one less enemy? Time and attempts proved that I am not one you can offend. A leader should know when to advance and when to retreat.
You want to get out of this World? Fine. Take what you want, do your thing from within the Hidden Forest. Do not step unauthorized within my territory, and my eminent self can accommodate you.
From now on, I shall turn a blind eye to all your deeds as a show of sincerity. Granted, of course, they stay confined to the Barbarian Continent.
Who knows, perhaps in the nearby future, you and I shall drink nuptial wine.
Konrad burst into fiendish laughter, and before the Ant Goddess could voice her opinion, he vanished in a whirlwind of black fog.
"I am confused. What are you trying to do with them?"
Selene asked from within the System as they returned to the Blood Mountain Range. Even with her solid understanding of him, she failed to comprehend the motives behind his recent actions.
"The Ant Goddess' tribulation cannot be stopped. As long as she hides within the World Tree, she will cross that pass, and rise to the next level. At that time, whether I can defeat her or not will be a complete mystery.
Therefore, we must hasten our growth while shifting the attention toward someone else. When the zenith ant armies flood the Barbarian Continent and head toward its doorsteps, the Infernal Cult won't be able to stay silent for long.
Meanwhile, I will anchor my soul to the Ancient Crystal World. For every person that perishes, my strength will rise accordingly. When the two forces clash, billions will die, billions of lives and souls to fuel both my ascension and supreme army.
In the meantime, we will use the Northern Khanate to trigger more chaos and plunge the entirety of the Barbarian Continent into a blazing Inferno. And when things reach their lowest point and despair crushes those that remain, I shall appear with my immortal legions to mend it all, destroy the fiends, restore the peace, and bring the deceased back to life.
And thus, the entirety of the World's Faith shall belong to me. Of course, I still need that thing from the Infernal Cult. We will soon pay them a visit."
Konrad replied. During his Death Conversion, he realized that one final step still lied above Embodiment, hidden from all others within the Three Realms. A step he had yet to take. Using the legions of death to power himself and increased his comprehension speed, he could hasten his breakthrough to the fourth layer, reach the last altitude in the Laws of Death, and fulfill his grand aspiration:
The creation of a brand-new supreme race:
The Chthonian Race!