Chapter 820: Enemies Often Cross Paths
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
It was a B-rank secret realm. Most newcomers hadn’t explored a secret realm before, but there were various resources that could provide you detailed information about secret realms in the Holy City. There was only one Dimensional lifeform called the Tide Fish Monster inside the secret realm, and it possessed around 2,000 Grassos of power, equivalent to the Middle Phase Heroic Soul Stage. They weren’t considered to be strong, but the scary thing about them was their sheer numbers. The entire secret realm was filled with narrow canyon passages like a maze. You had to be very familiar with the layout of the secret realm to be able to exit it, and you couldn’t avoid running into Tide Fish Monsters at all.
It was only the first day since the assessment content was released, and most newcomers were dumbfounded. Putting those who were weak aside, even the strong people who possessed above 5,000 Grassos of Soul Power wouldn’t be able to succeed easily. Their only chance of succeeding in this task was to form a team. The problem was that, although the Holy City didn’t prohibit them from forming teams, everyone entered the secret realm through a solo transmission channel that would randomly drop them off somewhere. Their Skylinks would be confiscated so that they couldn’t contact others; so even if you teamed up with someone beforehand, you had to be able to find them in the maze-like canyon. Unless you got really lucky, you might as well get through the canyon by yourself rather than waste time searching for your teammates… Forming teams were an unfeasible option. Unless you really thought that you were that lucky, you had to rely on your own power ultimately.
Those who were eligible to participate didn’t rush to join the competition on the first day it commenced. Some wanted to try the subsidiary profession test first, while some were still observing the situation since they weren’t in a rush. After all, that was a real secret realm, and you had to go in alone. If you encountered any danger inside, there wouldn’t be anyone to save you, and you might just be left to die there. Although it would be awful if you couldn’t be promoted to Holy Disciple, staying alive was still better than getting eaten by the Tide Fish Monsters. Where there is life, there is hope.
This sort of people appeared to be weak and lacking in confidence, but in reality, they had made a wise choice. Slow and steady wins the race. In every year’s Holy Disciple rank-advancement competition, most of the people who were promoted weren’t the newcomers from that year’s batch but the leftover people from previous batches. After all, it was just the title of a Holy Disciple; you had to be alive to claim it. Of course, those people had to endure other problems. Who knew how they survived in the Holy City after the novice protection period without gaining the title of Holy Disciple…?
In contrast, the subsidiary profession test area seemed to be buzzing with activity. Those who already had a subsidiary job would need to get their rank evaluated again. With a bunch of newcomers joining in, it was truly the golden age for the leaders of the three major subsidiary professions.
When Wang Zhong came back, it was already the afternoon of the day after the Holy Death Day. He didn’t mean to arrive late, but his cultivation had reached a critical juncture in the desert. Normally, people wouldn’t suddenly bring their cultivation to a halt when it reached an important juncture, let alone people like Wang Zhong who were obsessed with cultivation. By the time Wang Zhong arrived in the Holy City, it was a completely different sight as compared to before.
He wasn’t able to reach some of his old friends. Sharmie, Grai, Laura, Napier, and the others had already entered the secret realm, but they left Skylink messages for Wang Zhong before they set off. This group of people knew his strength quite well. Even though they didn’t know where Wang Zhong ran off to just before such an important event, they knew that it would be a piece of cake for him to pass the rank-advancement competition once he came back.
Other than these few friends, Lan Daier also left him a message. Although Lan Daier sounded nonchalant and laid-back, she was rather concerned about whether Wang Zhong would be promoted. In the Holy City, it was crucial for one to have freedom. This was one of the most important protection elements in the so-called novice protection period. Most newcomers were used to having freedom in the Federation, so they didn’t have any special interpretation of the word ‘freedom’. They most likely thought that they had been leading the lives of normal people in the Holy City for the past six months. However, they were dead wrong. If they didn’t become a Holy Disciple after the novice protection period, they would lose all their ‘freedom’. After this period and as long as you still wanted to stay in the Holy City, you had to spend long hours every day to complete trivial chores in the inner-city area, such as various cleaning jobs. The inner-city area was not open to the public, so these trivial chores could only be completed by the newcomers. You wouldn’t receive any reimbursement as it was considered a blessing in itself to be able to continue learning in the Holy City. Some said it could strengthen one’s resolve by enduring these hardships, but these trivial chores actually took up a lot of time. Also, once you did these chores for a long period of time and were subject to more discrimination, this would diminish your fighting spirit and ambition. You would be more prone to accepting your destiny as a weak person.
Honestly speaking, Lan Daier had been in the Holy City for nearly ten years, and there wasn’t a single person that was able to make a name for themselves if they didn’t manage to become a Holy Disciple after the novice protection period. Even if they passed the Holy Disciple test after five or six years, they would still basically be cannon fodder. The death rate of this sort of Holy Disciple was the highest every time the Holy Land sent out armies to conquer territories.
Lan Daier wasn’t worried about Wang Zhong’s level of power, but she was afraid that Wang Zhong would take this matter too lightly. If he missed this test, that would bring about detrimental consequences.
Wang Zhong agreed with her view. Lan Daier’s words had always been good advice, and he needed the Holy City to carry on with his cultivation. Just looking at Cellular Cosmology alone, it was a must for him to continue staying in the Holy City, so he was obliged to pass the test.
Looking through the information that his friends left him, Wang Zhong was not very interested in the B-rank secret realm, to be honest. If it was an A-rank secret realm, Wang Zhong would be intrigued enough to go and explore it. Since he still had time, he decided it would be good to take a look at the subsidiary profession test area. This was also a rare opportunity for him to learn more about the three major subsidiary professions.
The simplest way of being promoted to Holy Disciple was obviously to let the teacher affirm his Peak Heroic Soul Stage power. Yet, he could still do lots of things with the time remaining. The evaluation center was located at the assembly square in the Holy Disciples’ District.
The evaluation center was the most crowded place during the Holy Death Day period every year. Not only did people come to evaluate their Soul Power, there were also many who came for their subsidiary job evaluation. Newcomers only took up a very small fraction of the people here; most were Holy Disciples who had been refining their skills for numerous years. Some Holy Disciples were there to be promoted to an official apprentice of a subsidiary job. It was considered normal to only be accepted after seven or eight years, and there were plenty who spent more than 10 years too.
The Teachers in charge of the evaluation test were accomplished in their respective professions. However, it would be naive to think that Great Masters from the three major subsidiary professions would appear at this sort of place.
For example, in the alchemy profession, alchemists and senior apprentice alchemists carried out the official apprentice selection tests. There were even senior alchemists who brought apprentice alchemists to evaluate the ranks of official apprentices, but Great Masters wouldn’t appear unless there were special talents. Of course, this evaluation task was a good job that not everyone was eligible to take on. Being able to get it proved your influence in your subsidiary profession, and it also served as good preparation to advance to the next rank.
That was why, logically, being a Teacher in charge of a subsidiary profession test was definitely a job that everyone wanted, but Leo was so depressed now, he was on the verge of vomiting blood. He was an official alchemist and used to be in charge of evaluating the ranks of official apprentices, but now he was demoted to be in charge of the official apprentice selection tests. How tragic!
Ever since Murphy started to give him the cold shoulder, it was as if the whole world was abandoning him, and he lost faith in the Holy Land.
During this hell-like period, Leo reflected deeply, thinking about where he went wrong. His downfall was all because of that damned newcomer, but the problem was, Leo didn’t know why Murphy was angry. Was it because of that newcomer, or was it because of him? Did he want the newcomer dead, or did something about that newcomer attract him?
At the moment, he really didn’t dare to speculate what was going on in Murphy’s mind. If he guessed wrongly, it would be game over for him. However, the problem now was that he needed to find this bastard who seemed to have disappeared.
This time, Leo had received the notification to be the Teacher-in-charge at the last moment. No one bothered to tell him beforehand. He was still searching for that mysterious newcomer in the Tyrants and had no idea that the Holy Death Day had arrived. In the end, he discovered that he had become an existence that was trampled all over in the Alchemy Union.
Ever since the day he joined the Alchemy Union, he had been working under Murphy, the vice president of the Alchemy Union. Oh, such glorious days!
How did he end up in his current state? Leo could almost hear others criticizing him.
Leo sighed and rubbed his temples.
“Teacher Leo?” Beside him, Okuyama Domoto’s voice rang. “You’re here so early?”
Leo grew more unhappy at Okuyama Domoto’s presence. Previously, he had never interacted much with this guy, who was just a 9-star official disciple and not even an official alchemist in the Alchemy Union. Frankly speaking, he used to be on a completely different level than this guy. However, Leo had to entertain this conversation now. Indeed, a man who lost his position and influence would be subjected to much indignity.
Leo glanced at him and decided to suppress his annoyance. Since he was down-and-out, he should mind his actions, avoid conflict, and not be cocky. That was what he learned from the people he had trampled over. He responded reluctantly with a smile. “Can’t help it. The slots for today are full. Might as well come here earlier and get it over and done with.”
“Haha, you are more experienced. I need to learn much from you. I’ll just follow your decisions today.” Domoto smiled. Of course, he was just saying this for show. Although Leo was an official alchemist, everyone knew that the once favorite of Great Teacher Murphy had lost his status. However, even if Leo lost his status, he still wasn’t someone that Domoto could trample over.
Leo knew what Domoto thought of him too and was very unhappy, but there was nothing he could do about it. A teacher would be paired up with an apprentice to supervise the newcomer evaluation tests; that was the rule.
Wang Zhong reached the evaluation center, but there were far too many people, and he couldn’t find the place to affirm his Peak Heroic Soul Stage power after walking one whole round. There were no directions to guide him along. It seemed weird, as if there were only evaluation tests for the three major subsidiary professions here. At this point in time, the first day’s evaluation tests were already coming to an end. Since Wang Zhong was here, he thought he might as well try the subsidiary profession evaluation test.
He could forget about becoming a gourmet since he only knew how to eat the food they prepared. As for wards masters, he had just started learning about wards, so he probably shouldn’t embarrass himself. It was highly likely that being able to summon the Headless Knight had nothing to do with his proficiency in wards. The only thing he was confident in was alchemy. In fact, Wang Zhong had been interested in alchemy ever since he received the Golden Stone Slab. If he wanted to uncover the mysteries of the Golden Stone Slab, he probably needed to be proficient in alchemy. Also, he was in the Tyrants, and alchemy happened to be the most important thing to them.
Naturally, there were a lot of people at the alchemy test site. Some senior official disciples were conducting the first round of question-and-answer. Only those who passed this round were qualified to be interviewed by alchemists. Inside, Leo was very bored and continued thinking about life. In the past, he had such a promising future, and everything was going well. How did he fall from the clouds into his current state?
This was a lesson that he shouldn’t ever be greedy for small gains in the future.
Domoto was quite experienced, so he was in charge of the first question-and-answer round. After all, he was a 9-star alchemy disciple, and he enjoyed the feeling of dominating over the masses. He felt like a ruler at this time every year. It was also because of his alchemy disciple status that he was able to have higher status and more say in the Federation circle. Everyone had to give way to him; even some aristocratic family members had to bow to him. Sometimes, he could even hook up with aristocratic ladies.
It was all good until he encountered an insolent dude. If not for Molton holding him back, he would have definitely killed that dude.
Motherf*cker, if he had the chance, he would torture him so bad.
At this moment, Domoto rubbed his eyes. Sh*t, wasn’t that the ignorant dude? Speak of the devil!
Wang Zhong was queuing when someone suddenly appeared in front of him. Wang Zhong’s heart skipped a beat at that instant. Damn it, enemies often cross paths.
“You, scram!” Domoto cut straight to the point and pointed outside.
Everyone quieted down immediately. Some people had recognized Wang Zhong and were whispering among themselves.
If the other party had been more tactful, Wang Zhong might just have really left. However, since the other party was so domineering, it was a different story. “Are you fit to say that?”
“Yes, I’m asking you to get lost right now. Do you not understand what language I’m speaking?” Okuyama Domoto didn’t expect Wang Zhong to dare to resist him. This was interesting; perhaps this would be satisfying. “Not only am I telling you to get lost, I’m also saying that as long as I’m around, you puny cockroach won’t ever be able to become an alchemist.”
“What if I don’t leave?” Wang Zhong shrugged, staring at Okuyama Domoto.
Everyone was interested in their conversation now. In this place, even a dragon had to lower its head since your fate was in the hands of another. Justice? You could only talk about that when you were strong enough.
“Oh, you mean you’re unwilling to obey my instructions, and you’re going to go against my judgment?” Okuyama Domoto looked at Wang Zhong. It was even better if Wang Zhong tried to disobey him. Then, he wouldn’t merely be telling him to scram, he could make sure that Wang Zhong was dead and condemned forever!
In the Holy Land, if you dared to violate rules openly during formal occasions, you could be dealt with on the spot.
“I didn’t hear a judgment being made. I only heard a dog barking.” Wang Zhong knew the other party was stirring trouble. Since Wang Zhong had decided to stand up to him, he wouldn’t be a coward; at worst, he could just kill him. He had been in the Holy Land for quite some time, and although he couldn’t afford to offend big shots, Domoto was definitely not considered one. Okuyama Domoto still seemed to think that Wang Zhong was a newbie who didn’t know anything.
Okuyama Domoto flew into a rage instantly. With a growl, he expended a blast of Soul Power and was about to attack. At this moment, a voice intercepted. “Both of you stop it. What are you guys doing!”
Leo was already depressed enough, and now, there was someone stirring up trouble here, adding to his annoyance. Causing trouble at this place, were they crazy? Was he transparent to them? Although Murphy didn’t like him anymore, he was still an alchemist. These people were taking it too far…
The next second, Leo was stunned. Praise the Holy Saint Teacher, he had traveled far and wide to find this dude, only for him to appear before him so unexpectedly!
Leo could recognize this dude even if he was burnt to ashes!
It was him!
It was him!
It was him!
Okuyama Domoto was trying to show off and assert his dominance, but he didn’t expect Leo to interrupt him. Leo was his superior after all, so he had to show him some face. “Senior, this person is here to cause trouble, and he’s violating orders publicly. I will deal with him. You don’t need to bother yourself with such trivial stuff.”