Translator:EndlessFantasy TranslationEditor:EndlessFantasy Translation
The scent of the Azurite and the Robe were undoubtedly completely identicalJoshua was not lying regarding the matter.
While there still questions in Urbandy’s heart, it remained impossible to fake Order power ripples. In his memory, only ‘That Person’ possessed that cascading energy, and ‘That Person’ did mention once that he was not alone.
It was merely that whether it was ‘he’ or the titan would never have expected that it was actually a thousand years later that the companions would meet again.
And so the Dark Creek King sighed once, and said with a slightly grudging tone, “You’re late, powerful warrior. The companion you seek was still within these mountains just minutes ago.”
It did not take much time for Urbandy and Joshua to make things clear. All that had transpired was revealed in the titan’s thunderous voice.
With a single Jewel Seed as an offering, Hillya had requested for Urbandy’s shelter. And though the titan had wanted to limit the protection period to twenty days due to the innumerable armies chasing her, it changed its mind after seeing the light of the holy one exploding out of the mystical gown, deciding to send her safely southwest of the continent, next to the Tomb of the Saints.
But they never expected that the Death Shade armies in pursuit were so innumerable that they encircled the entire Xayar Mountain range. The phantom fiends blanketed the world, flooding the mountains and forests like a sea wave while causing the land to tremble. Urbandy, forced to face them as a treant, was at most able to guarantee Hillya’s safety, but had no way of escorting her out.
Then, the three Death Shade Commanders arrived.
“As everyone knows, there are beings of wisdom amidst the Death Shades,”the titan spoke as its purple-fire eye scanned the world around it. As it stared, the multifarious Death Shades were destroyed instantly, from turning into smoke.
“They are powerful enough to rule over the other Death Shades, as well as capable of raising their own powers through the destruction of other Death Shades.”
Joshua nodded in return. He certainly had seen quite a few Death Shade of such make as he flew here from the southeastern edge of the continent, and had wiped them all out due to the danger he sensed from their existence.
“And on this world, the most powerful commanders of the Death Shades are gathered within Geutard, the former imperial capital of the Ulan Empire. There are seven of them, which of whom were individuals who had shook the world when they livedgreat heroes whose legends survived as they were told and retold by later generations. It is they who pursue your companion.”
Despite feeling the injury on its left shoulder, Urbandy spoke without a hint of anger even as its thunderous speech echoed across the skies.“I did not know their true identities before, but now I at least know that amongst them was Eramos of the Divine Sunfall Arrow.”
The rest were not much to speak of. Even Urbandy had no way of avoiding facing off against the combined assault of three Death Shades commanders, and could only unleash all its powers as a titan.
Furthermore, unable to protect the dragon-winged girl in the intense skirmish, Urbandy briskly constructed a hastily made dimensional portal and warped Hillya awayeven Urbandy itself could only roughly guess the direction of its heading.
“Is that so.”
Joshua was not too disappointed after listening to the titan’s story. He had already expected that it would not be a smooth sailing, and in the very least he had ascertained that Hillya was not dead and the fourth Sage’s Legacy was unscathed. Those were fine circumstances, especially since the worst-case scenario Pope Igor came up with was that the Sage’s Legacy had self-destructed, which in turn explained how its resonance was powerful enough to help them locate its coordinates across many worlds.
After some thought, Joshua pressed on. “Well, could you determine the general direction?”
“The boundary I’ve framed is to the west,”Urbandy replied, shaking its headrocky shards dropping from its gigantic black stone head as it did so. “I know nothing apart from thatI’ve never been adept at teleporting; I wouldn’t know if she’s on land or in the air.”
Unreliable, but direct.
Joshua could not help being shocked inwardly when he imagined that the target he sought was sent directly into the underground layer. Soon, however, he remembered that the Sage’s Legacy was not so worthless that it would easily let its heir die.
Nonetheless, whatever the case may be, there was no way to quickly find her.
Finishing up his thoughts, Joshua looked up towards the titan that was as majestic as mountains. As if a human-shaped stony peak, Urbandy’s body had an incomparable presenceits upper body alone was four-hundred meters tall after all. Even the sea king behemoths and floating island whales that were described as colossal were but mere playthings in its hands. Titan dragons were also not much different from little chicks.
And now, the titan was studying the warrior too. The scent that emanated from Joshua’s chest a while ago had made the titan recall some obscure memory from a long, long time ago. The memories were even making the purple flame deep within its eye sockets sparkle, unleashing radiance of varying intensity.
Those had been memories it had long forgotten and were about to vanish within its Spiritual Sea. If not for that scent, Urbandy might have completely lost its recollection of things that had once transpired.
“Well then, Dark Creek KingI do not intend to withdraw my offerings, for I have other questions.”
Joshua’s words interrupted Urbandy’s reminiscence as it was about to fall into deep thought. Still, the Dark Creek King did not show any dissatisfaction, just endless whelming of emotion.
“It’s alright,”the titan replied, returning to attention.“Please ask away.”
“Why has this world turned into such a state?”
Joshua’s speech was simple and direct.
He had been to many different worlds before. Be it the barren Karlis Continent, the natural lands of Illgner or the devastated empty lands in the Bloodmoon Abyss, all those worlds were either facing destruction or already destroyed. Everything would have transpired before the warrior arrived at those planes, and all that remains were only resistance and counter-attacks.
But the world of Grandia was slightly different. Though the continent was filled with ferocious undead spirits, there were still human settlements sprinkled like stars at every corner of this continent.
Furthermoreaccording to Jarienthe four major human settlements surrounding the Tomb of the Saints at the southwestern region of the continent was still equipped with powerful magical technology reserves. They had reclaimed many wastelands to resume production and construction.
So, if this was the apocalypse and everything was at its worst, everything that came after could only be gradual improvement. The warrior was also certain that, with the level of magic in this world, the people would certainly come up with a method to wipe out the Death Shades completely someday.
Compared to before where all was annihilation caused by Evil Gods, there was still possible of salvation even without relying upon miraclesjust hard work.
“The reason why this world turned into such a state, huh Hold on.”
After a brief paused, the titan’s head slowly whirled as it looked northwest.“It’s fine now.”It smiled disdainfully.“The voyeur is gone, and I don’t have to maintain my combat form.”
Even as it spoke, the titan’s body crumbled rapidly, turning into a summit formed from fragmented boulders. Then, brown-black veins that resembled countless roots and appeared to be both alive and herbal at once seeped into the land, returning the ruined Dark Creek Forest to its original state before the battle.
After the lava cooled and the air of death was cleansed, the entire Xayar soon returned to peace. Then, the treant formed from a cluster of tree-roots broke through the soil and appeared at the summit before Joshua.
“You want to know how this world turned to such a state?”Urbandy asked again.
“That’s right.” The warrior nodded. This was not just to satisfy his curiosityhe desired to verify if there was a trace of an Evil God behind the scenes.
After all, the worlds in the Multiverse that fell to undead spirits were not in the few.
The titan treant took a long stare at Joshua, and then narrated the story with its deep voice.
“Very well. The story began several decades ago.”
It was not a dark tale filled with mystery and schemes; neither was it a rousing and charitable heroic epic.
Everything started with your typical technological race between two empires.
The Grandia Continent had been split between the two great factionsthe Gelug and the Ulan Empires, with one adept at psionic magic and the other boasting a stronger population. Apart from direct large-scale war, both engaged in a competition on every frontwith magical technological prowess naturally being the most important field.
While a combat-class heavenly champion could level an entire city at full-strength, a divine spellcaster could turn everything they see into an ocean of inferno when they unleashed their full power. There was no distinct superiority between the two, but spellcasters were assuredly more appropriate for war.
And so, to help their spellcasters gain high ground, the Ulan Empire could be describe as having exhausted all efforts.
“They foundfrom some unknown old tomesthe way to summon Heroic Spirits that had long perished by using relics and Jewel Seeds as an energy source. Without even caring if the spirits were reluctant about being revived, they simply forced them to awaken from their eternal slumber and got these bygone heroes to fight for themselves.”
Urbandy’s voice was at once mocking and lamenting.“That was why a large number of the powerful Heroic Spirits were unwilling to serve themeven living heroes born within the Ulan Empire too were disgruntled.”
What happened next were easy to comprehendeven Joshua himself could guess most of it.
The Ulan Empire had proceeded to tempt the Heroic Spirits with huge rewards if they fought for their ends, but the result was dissatisfactory. Having spent a huge chunk of the national treasury for the experiment, the emperor and the marshal sorcerer naturally could not accept failure from such a reasonthey immediately stared to research the method to control Heroic Spirits.
“And then” Joshua muttered softly, having listened to this point.
“And then.”The titan shook its head somberly.“The apocalypse arrived.”
“At the time, the Ulan Empire summoned seven of the most powerful Heroic Spirits even across all history. Since I’ve been staying in the Dark Creek Forest all along, I do not know of their identities.”
“But whatever the case may be, if the Ulan Empire’s plans had succeeded, the balance of power over the continent would definitely have shifted in their favor. But then a sudden earthquake destroyed everythingwhat came next was the abnormal vapor that engulfs the entire world, allowing the dead to walk and the Death Shades to rampage.
Suddenly, Joshua furrowed his browhe could identify truth or omission in statements solely from ripples of the soul and changes in speech.
“What else was there?” he asked, discontented. “You’ve only described the process, but omitted the most important factorwhat ultimately allowed the apocalypse?”
“You could tell.”Urbandy did not panic. It stared at the spot on the warrior’s chest where the Azurite had emitted its radiance. Then, after a long silence, the titan said softly,“Perhaps you could know the truth After all, you might belong to that placethe homeland of ‘That Person’.”
Not minding Joshua’s doubtful frown, Urbandy’s tree body shifted slightly.
“As you could see, I’m a titan,”it said quietly, reaching out with its wooden palm and caressing the stones on the peak.“The lifespan of titans is virtually endless.”
“What are you saying?” the warrior asked, baffled.
“When I was still a mere seedling of the land, I had once witnessed this ill-tempered world return to calmness. The raging flames of Creation kept the entire continent a molten sea, while endless water vapor that had combined with underground toxic fogs engulfed the skies and abyss when the Pioneers first arrived in this world. It was ‘That Person’s’ saintly ritual, which had used the power that shaped all things and transformed the world into what you now see.”
Urbandy now spoke dispassionately, revealing the truth that it had conjectured.
“Due to my oath, I’m bound to the center of this continent. Of course, I wouldn’t know the real reason why this world became like this. However, I could sense a trace of that ancient ritual that had calmed the world a long time ago just as it became shrouded in the deathly fogthe ritual’s purpose being the complete opposite this time around.
“Alright, humanthat’s about what I could answer for your question. As a being from another world, why would you ask so much about our world”
With those words, the titan ended the topic and took the protocrystal presented by the warrior.“Any other questions?”it then asked peacefully.“Though you’ve hurt me, I am still aware that it’s thanks to your arrival that those Death Shades retreated. I could help you with one more additional matter.”
Having noted every information acquired from Urbandy, Joshua had intended to refuse since there was nothing he needed help withbut with a shift in his heart, the warrior changed his mind.
“Urbandy, you’re definitely a Majestic Mountain Titan, right?”
“Majestic Mountain Titan? Perhaps. My bloodline merely tells me that I’m a descendant of the Mother Goddess, possessing the blood of gods and indeed a titan. As for what make of titan, I’m not certain myself.”
The titan did not have much to hide on such aspectsbut Urbandy did reply with a question of its own.
“Warrior, what do you want intend to do, asking this question?”
Joshua smiled slightly in return.
Through the details Jarien and Urbandy had given him, he largely understood part of the truth behind this world.
The world of Grandia had been a brand-new world that was just born several millennia ago. Before the Sage’s Apostle led the ‘pioneers’ here from Mycroft, it was still a fiery ocean of lava, but by using power from the Sage’s ritual, the entire world became what it was now.
And the Death Shades that now invaded the entire world were probably a result caused by the ritual.
The warrior also had an inkling as to why the Sage’s Apostle would want to lead so many peopleincluding an embryo of this Divine Child of the Land.
It was to sow seeds. The Mycroft Continent was long dead, and the war against the Evil Gods could very well destroy the entire world. The Sage obviously could not directly lead the people and flee like Father Nature, but he would clearly leave room for maneuvers, just as the other deities would assuredly interfere to maintain the survival of their descendants.
As for the Mother Goddess
Flames created the existing light as Steel shaped all primordial things. The world is the ashes from the Flames, while the rust of Steel was the power of the world itselfone of the most important spawns of Steel Strength.
As the direct bloodline from the Mother Goddess, the Majestic Mountain titan could integrate the many elements into a single body power, and was one of the forces that had the greatest affinity to steel strength.
That was why Joshua nodded and proceeded to speak with a voice of utmost resolve and seriousness.
“I want to observe and study your body’s construct, powerful titan. It won’t take to long, just let me have a look!”
Urbandy fell silent for quite some time. Though its face that was built from tree roots was expressionless, the purple flames within its eye sockets were dancing madly.
“Do you intend to fight me again, human?!”