Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
It was not the first time Joshua was astonished by the power Legends wielded, but the Spirit-Substance Transition Runes casted by Vahina had definitely left him in awe.
There was no question that such was the Extraordinary-class of Spirit-Substance Transition, and it sounded as if it was a strengthened version of the soul… The Sage of the Eastern Sea was certainly a true spellcaster, and would not lose out to peers of other worlds.
Hence, there was little wonder why Barnil and the others said that if the knowledge of Legends were all disseminated for common use, the Mycroft world could indeed conquer the Void, much less strive into the Void.
At the moment, Joshua could not help remembering what the two Legendary mages said, and he nodded with a tinge of agreement—if the Mycroft civilization could popularize all powers grasped by Legends and adopt their skill and ability for civilian use, it would not be difficult to build another Glorious Era. Perhaps, it might just be a matter of time for the Starfall Era to surpass the Glorious Era, although the only thing standing against the advent of such an age was the lack of awareness the peasant had toward Extraordinary power, and insufficient education.
A civilization that was truly Extraordinary.
Joshua now also completely understood the base for the revolution Israel desired—His Imperial Majesty must have already realized the fact, which was why he kept supporting Nostradamus’s efforts to spread Extraordinary abilities to all levels of the Empire. True geniuses are not necessarily groomed by the elite or nobles—that takes a collective educating of the entire imperial population, attained through elimination from a massive quota.
“That skill is really too precious, Lady Vahina. I don’t believe Stellaris’s coordinates to be a worthy trade.”
Though moved, Joshua conveyed his opinion directly. He returned to his armchair, his hands placed over the handles and his expression compose. “But incidentally, I have many coordinates of other living worlds.”
“Is that so?” The lady sage who could calmly say that she dissected her own body lifted her brow slightly. Her lips parted as if she wanted to say something, but only ended up with a sigh. “Perhaps I indeed stood to lose… But that’s not important. I just want what I want, value does not matter to me.”
In that very moment, Vahina was definitely worthy of the title of sage given how extraordinarily open she was about such things. As for Joshua, the warrior could see that her spiritual clone was about to vanish at any moment, and simply shrugged. “Fairness is most important in a trade… You wish for coordinates of living worlds? Then have it.”
At that, the warrior lifted his right hand and straightened his index finger, the tip of which a silver flash flickered. Thus, an ounce of Steel Strength that carried substantial information and coordinates streamed toward Vahina.
“…So many? You have actually been to so many living worlds? And the Abyss—to think that there are worlds with life in the Abyss!”
Vahina had been nonchalant at first. She believed that Joshua would only give her the coordinates to Stellaris, and never would have imagined that Joshua had packaged coordinates of three worlds: the worlds of Karlis, Stellaris, and Kronos. The sage breathed in awe, but said nothing since she was about to vanish, and simply threw the wheel that was still cycling between the trinity of energy-mass-spirit by ‘light’, ‘crystal’ and ‘shroud’ to Joshua.
Thus, Vahina’s spiritual clone turned into a puff of obscure shroud that vanished from the liege’s residence.
“Thanks for taking care of Hill and Fina,” she said lastly, as if vanishing into the wind. “Those two are talented children—I’ll be at their wedding as well.”
But as those echoes disappeared from the guest hall, the silver shroud had already dispersed. Still in his seat, Joshua watched as the Wheel whirled without end, and frowned as he pondered.
“Spirit-Substance Transition… Such a frightening skill.” He mumbled, before shaking his head. “A Legend must never be underestimated, nor should there be a fixed label over their title—anyone who did not witness the Sage of the firsthand would certainly have thought that she was a spellcaster who mastered the water element or was specialized in marine warfare.”
Joshua could not help smiling as he said that, because it was not just Vahina—he was a similar case himself. The dragon-slayer the people wrote songs about, as well as titles such as the Count of Winter Steel or Infernal Count were completely unrelated to his Steel Strength… such was the unavoidable discrepancy when true power was displayed before normal people.
As for coordinates to other worlds, Joshua believed that there was not anything that he should be holding back about. He had left out Illgner and the Bloodmoon Abyss, while Karlis was left with a pack of refugees from Grandia—those citizens needed help in the first place, and Vahina would not do nothing if she went.
He had also intended to tell her about Stellaris from the start. There was no need to mention the interplanetary War for Order, and if a Legendary champion heads to that place, would Star the Steel Python miss such a high-end combat force?
As for the jungle world of Kronos, that place certainly needed a Legendary champion’s protection and aid. If Vahina headed for that place, not only would she acquire information of a new world, she could also interact with the Ancient Dragon. The Drakonids of that world would also be watched over, therefore a win-win situation.
And when it came to the skill Vahina left behind: Soul-Substance Transition, Joshua could only describe it as extraordinary.
The energy from the transition of mass was astronomical—an object the size of a chair could already be converted into a force capable of destroying an entire world. Soul converted from mass was even more unheard of, and yet Vahina accomplished it and stabilized the transition process, and gave it to him as an object of trade.
Holding the Steel Strength secret text from the Earth Temple and the Wheel with another, Joshua thought for a moment before deciding to study the Soul-Substance wheel.
[Legendary Item: Soul-Substance Runic Wheel]
[One and Only]
[Identifying… Identification successful… &%! 2%@*! @#%]
The System broke… well, never mind.
Ignoring the System at his cornea that was now a complete cluster of mojibake, Joshua kept studying the unique object left by the Legendary sage. Joshua’s pupils turned silver as he seriously studied the wheel over a dozen minutes—in that period, Zero-Three, Ying, Ling, and Black and Light who walked carefully all passed by the doors to the guest hall and glimpsed at Joshua silently. However, Joshua did not greet them as his attention was all placed on the wheel.
Quite some time later, Joshua’s gaze was freed from the roulette, and he exhaled a long breath.
“I don’t get it.”
And it was perfectly normal. Was there any principle in this world one would understand with a single glance? Could anyone receive instant epiphany, and learn some energy principle… At least, Joshua thought that it was impossible—he did not have the talent even if it was, and it would not work even if he directly observed it microscopically.
His power was not the summation of a single day’s epiphany after isolating himself in training over a dozen years either. Instead, it was eight hours of daily training, serious study of principle and knowledge, along with experimental combat whenever there was time: a balance between work and recreation, coordination between mind and limbs, never mistaking between thinking and cutting a foe down. And it was the same for observing the rune, for just looking was ineffective—he must experience it firsthand and experiment with it himself to ascertain the veracity of the skill.
However, even if he did not decipher how Vahina switched between mass, energy, and soul, Joshua had understood some facets as a bare minimum. For example, the formula Vahina provided could not directly convert mass into soul—or more specifically, the formula only converts soul into energy, and the energy in turn would be converted to substance, before the substance was finally turned into soul. It could not change soul into substance or substance into soul right away, making energy the medium between soul and substance.
And it made sense, Joshua thought, for that meant what Vahina could transmute were soul energies she herself could grasp, and arbitrarily pick up any rock and change it into energy or soul. If that was the case, would the Sage of the Eastern Seas not already be unmatched, for who could stop her, one who wielded the power to destroy stars? Perhaps only the old Pope who could control the speed of light had a chance.
At the same time, Joshua still found it a pity, for how many times would his power increase by if the Soul-Substance Transition Rune had such frightening effect? Others notwithstanding, it was no exaggeration that his body was so dense, the energy of a phalange from his finger could blow up an entire planet. Moreover, should he try his best not to self-destruct, he could cause a gamma-ray explosion that could hit other worlds in the Void.
“Still, that is too frightening. Vahina abandoned her body of flesh and also ascended with Soul Mastery, meaning her soul would be much more refined and profound compared to typical Legendary champions. Leaving aside soul spells, the combat prowess gained through converting such quantity of soul into combat strength definitely should not be ignored.”
Now that it has been mention, was Zero-Three not in the same situation? Having only a soul but no body… In that respect, she was identical to Vahina.
But now was not the time to appraise Vahina’s combat prowess. Joshua put the Soul-Substance Rune into his pocket, picked up the book in a corner and skimmed through it.
Steel Strength was a power exclusive to children of the Majestic Mountain Titans—Mother Goddess, and a standard power inherited from the Mother Goddess-World Will classes. Rarely were there any who wielded Steel Strength apart from Descendants of Divine Bloodline and Titans, and that secret text recorded the most important training and martial arts utilizing Steel Strength in the Earth Temple. Their original was inscribed with divine language and the legacy stone plaque at the center of the Earth Temple, but was now copied and translated into human language, before being delivered to Joshua.
“A little intriguing.”
Skimming through a large chunk of nonsense that praised the Mother Goddess, flattered the awe-inspiring power of Titans and stated some aspects of Steel Strength he already understood, Joshua reached the fifteen page of the text, and started reading about ‘Steel Strength focus and utilization’. It was written here how a skill where a certain Majestic Mountain Titan had materialized weapons and a variety of tools by stabilizing the particles in the air.
Beyond that, the skill could be used to rapidly recover from any injury or loss of body parts. As long as the atomic particles around them were dense enough, even mortal injuries could be mostly healed instantly… It was certainly a meaningful method of focusing, but did not quite fit Joshua because his body was too dense—he would empty the dust particles across dozens of kilometers even for a mild wound if he followed the instructions written, or create a huge crater on land.
Nevertheless, there was definitely some use to the book. Although some of those knowledge—such as long-distant communication through Steel Strength resonance—were outdated and far inferior compared to present day’s communications circle, it still could see use in worlds devoid of magical elements or worlds where mana has died. That being said, the combat applications of Steel Strength given were nothing other than gravity blast or mass charge, and Joshua believed he could fight better instinctively than by following what was written here.
Apart from combat, the old text from the Earth Temple was considerably valuable—in fact, Joshua learned Steel Strength Creation thanks to it!
“A little like 3D printing, but more convenient and detailed than 3D printing.”
As he muttered to himself, Joshua extended his right hand. Silver fog encircled his palm, and materialized a little metallic figure depicting Ying in moments. The figure of the silver-haired girl was so vivid that even its gaze was like a real person’s—in seconds, Joshua gave form to the image of her in his mind.
“Not bad, if this ability is used in battle…” Joshua was promptly excited—although he could create intricate and complex organs in his own body before such as Psionic Warp Engine and Nuclear Heart, those had original forms and were inside his body. But now, he could create such a detailed figure by sheer imagination alone!
If it is really applied in a real fight, provided with enough raw materials, he could directly produce seven to eight Nuclear Heart Engines and carry it with him, detonate one if he came across any Demon General, two for any Void Behemoth, and a dozen for Abyssal Liege… It was a delight to even think about it!
“Master… His Imperial Majesty has asked for you through the comms…”
Just as Joshua stretched his thoughts into the future, Ying poked her head in from the doors of the guest hall. “Master Nostradamus is there as well,” she said, blinking her large, green eyes. “Look… Eh? What is that?”
Joshua shrugged at the mention of the two names, and rose. “I knew they would definitely come looking for me… I’ll be there right away.”
“As for that?” He laughed, lifting the metallic figure he materialized from Steel Strength, handing it to her as he opened the doors and patted her head. “Consider it a gift from you, since I didn’t bring you and Ling along in the last trip.”
“And don’t think too much—Lisa is an apprentice I brought back from another world. She is of pure Ancient Dragon Bloodline, and more dragon than Black!”
Having said that, he strode toward the second-floor communications room, leaving Ying where she was as she stared blankly at the figure.
The screen in the communications was flickering. The Great Mana Tide had raised the intensity of magical energy so much that audio and visual feed could all be transmitted smoothly, although slight static was unavoidable. And now, an imposing man with shoulder-length dull blond hair was waiting impatiently in the center of the visual feed for Joshua’s arrival, his arms folded across his chest.
“You’re finally here? Noble Radcliffe—you’ve just returned from Stellaris with Master Nostradamus, and now you already ran a lap around the Void with those two old fellows? You are truly restless…”
“Everyone has different lifestyles… Though I think keeping this up isn’t alright, which is why I think I’ll be taking a break.”
You’ve said that last time, and the time before—in fact, every single time.
On the other end of the screen, Israel did not really say what he thought, but his expression had virtually written it all over his face. “There are significant movements in the Sixth Abyss recently,” he sighed after a while. “The Void Star-Observatory noted that at least two of their armies had left the Abyss itself and started toward the other end of the Void… If they invade Mycroft now, and you’re gone, the Northern Empire would be threatened.”
The Empire spoke somberly, and it was apparent that he had recently been worrying over such things. On the other hand, Joshua’s expression became curious as if he remembered something.
“Two demonic armies? I’m not too sure… But if it was one, that might have been the one that rushed to my end.”
After some thought, Joshua told Israel everything about his encounter with the Insectoid Demon General and its minions around the world of Kronos.
“…” Israel’s expression became complicated at once.
However, Joshua appeared to have missed the Emperor’s expression, continuing without a care. “Come to think of it, Your Majesty, when are you prepared to purge and revolt against the conservative nobles?” He asked toward the other end of the screen. “I’m neither urging you nor suspecting your resolve for revolution, but I would like to know the specific timing since I’m often away as you could tell…”
At that, even Joshua himself appeared to be embarrassed and stopped himself, whereas Israel sighed heavily. “It’s fine—you’re that kind of person, not that I could hope that you would become a real noble…”
“As for revolution…”
Israel closed his eyes, smiled coldly and opened them again, his gaze glinting in the light called expectation. “Soon.”
“Now that you mention it you did make a contribution.” Israel looked at Joshua and nodded solemnly. “Thanks to you, the Imperial Royal Mage Lab had acquired sufficient information when you took the Gale and participated in the War of the Sacred Mountain, giving us the initial data for an improved aerial warship… Hmph. It’s better to be fully prepared when it came to things like a purge.
“Trials for the Second-Generation Augmented Aerial Warship has been completed. When the Air Force of the Five Great Armies formally fields it, any possible resistance from the Nobles in the future would be easily subjugated.
“Before the new era comes, all obsolete bedbugs would be swept down to the drainage of history by the new power of the Empire.”