The flying ship streaked through the air, leaving a cloud-like trail of Wind Elementium behind it.
Anything on the ground, no matter if it was a human, a beast, or a tree, had become a tiny little black dot. Even the magical swamp, which Greem had spent the past six years in, just looked like a filthy pond covered by a dense fog.
After staying in the magical swamp for so long, Greem felt that the outside world was quite strange.
After the ship ascended to cruising altitude, Greem walked over to the ship's side to have a good look at the land below. Asides from the magical swamp, Greem saw a few human villages and a small city.
There were pale yellow wheat fields everywhere, each decorated here and there with thumb-size windmills. On the road, which stretched on and on like a silver belt, he could also see some ant-sized coaches.
The flying ship was heading South.
The further South they got, the greener the earth became, but human activities were still rare. Whenever they approached a human colony, Greem could always see vast, thick forests around it, and the lively activities of the wild beasts within them.
This was the current situation on the Adept Mainland.
Every human colony was surrounded by a boundless virgin forest and savage woods. Countless wild beasts, demonic beasts, and demons were living within them. The human forces of the colony could deal with those ordinary wild and demonic beasts, but when they were forced to face those strange and unpredictable demons, they would have to rely on the help of more powerful forces.
And these forces were, obviously, Adepts.
As powerful individuals possessing supernatural powers, Adepts were the true masters of this land. Although they had ceased to be normal humans, most official Adepts were willing to contribute part of their strength to allow ordinary humans to continue live and multiply in this land.
Ordinary human society was like the sheep living in captivity, and the Adepts were the shepherds who looking after these ranches, looking forward to new blood joining their ranks. In the eyes of ordinary humans, Apprentice Adepts like Greem had powerful, mystical, and bizarre abilities, but in the eyes of official Adepts, they were still just ants.
As long as they hadn't crossed the threshold and become an official Adept, these apprentices were still creatures that couldn't be mentioned in the same breath with official Adept.
As he saw the world unfolding in front of his eyes, his desire to become stronger rose in Greem's mind alongside a sense of urgency.
Although he had poured forth a lot of effort recently, that was more because of habit and had been required for survival. But today the desire of becoming stronger actually came from the bottom of his heart.
This was a mysterious, profound, and strange world, totally different from the Earth, where he had come from. Back on Earth, the strength of an individual was insignificant, and one could only grow stronger by relying on the strength of the masses. But in this world, which had an ocean of magical energy, the strength of an individual had great meaning. Things that couldn't be achieved on Earth were possible here.
For the first time, Greem couldn't restrain his desires. He wanted to stand at the pinnacle of this world with his own strength, so he could the real shape of the world. Perhaps this was the why the mighty Will of the Adept World had drawn him from Earth, a world where no magic existed, into this world of advanced magic.
A bitter wind scraped it way up the side of the ship.
Although the deck was protected by a Barrier, sparing these apprentices from the brunt of the gale-force winds, the temperature was still very low on deck.
Greem only had a Physique of 5. Obviously, he couldn't withstand the changing temperature with his body alone, thus, he pulled his robe tight to keep warm. Mary was still wearing her same iconic thin red chiffon dress, exposing a large amount of her fair skin, yet she didn't seem to feel the chilling breeze.
With more than 10 Physique, an Apprentice Adept would never be affected by the temperature changes caused by the seasons. For Greem, it was a freezing wind, but for Mary, it was just a rather cool breeze. When an Apprentice Adept had more than 15 Physique, those ordinary harsh environments would no longer be impossible places to live.
Beyond 20 Physique was a frightening level that only Body Refining Adepts could attain. If someone really reached that level, he would be tough to kill even by being thrown into a pit of lava or an extremely cold abyss.
Although much weaker than Body Refining Adepts, Principle Adepts would also gain some resistance to the elements when became official Adepts.
As it was his first time seeing it, the scenery outside of the ship was indeed breathtaking, and was too beautiful to be absorbed all at once. But after looking at it for quite some time, it became boring. Thus, Greem laid out a cloth and invited Mary to sit together with him, stealthily measuring the crowd with his eyes as he did so.
He had a feeling when he boarded the ship that he was the only Beginner Apprentice on board. Now, through the passive probing with his Elementium Vision, he was able to get a clearer understanding of the situation.
Striking red glows, which represented danger, were spread out amongst the crowd. There were even a few people who glowed purple, which meant extreme danger.
The Chip quickly presented the actual statistics of the crowd to Greem.
There were a total of 317 Apprentice Adepts on board. 11 Pseudo-Adepts, 92 Advanced Apprentices, and the rest were Intermediate Apprentices. Greem was excluded from the statistics.
Those Pseudo-Adepts were the big shots among the population of Apprentices. Each of them was surrounded by a large group of opportunists. But, the relationship between these Pseudo-Adepts was cold and detached, as if there was a clear distinction between them, and no one wanted to communicate with the other.
Actually, this was understandable.
At their current level, as long as they could break through the frightening barrier, they would be able to have a meteoric rise, becoming supreme existences that stood out from the crowd. At that point in time, these opportunists surrounding them would become disgusting flies, which they would never take seriously.
They were not willing to spend time in making friendly contacts with other Pseudo-Adepts at the same level. After all, there was a huge risk they had to face during the ceremony of becoming an official Adept. If the Pseudo-Adept they had established a friendly relationship failed in breaking through the barrier, then the previous investment of affection would be wasted. At that point in time, one person was an official Adept, while the other was still an apprentice, and so they wouldn't be able to communicate as peers.
As for a true relationship, they could totally have it after both became official Adepts. Presumably, no newly promoted Adept would reject a friendly relationship with same level Adepts!
Therefore, influenced by such proud and aloof, yet narcissistic mentalities, all eleven Pseudo-Adepts had divided into their own factions, each showing no intention of communicating with others. The lively communication between Advanced Apprentices was in sharp contrast with the Pseudo-Adepts.
Across various groups of all sizes, Advanced Apprentices were the group had the liveliest and most frequent communication. While the Intermediate Apprentices, who was also the largest group, kept silent or simply agreed with what other people said. They were like green plants that accented the beauty of red roses, insignificant and unworthy of being mentioned.
By contrast, Mary, who quietly sitting beside Greem had become the perfect target for a friendly relationship. Even a few male Pseudo-Adepts were peeking at her.
A female Advanced Apprentice who excelled in both appearance and body shape, even though she always wore a cold and aloof expression, she still attracted frequent glances from many male Apprentices.
"Don't you want to make a few friends?" Trying hard to hold his smile, Greem continued whispering, "I can tell many of them really wish to get to know you!"
Mary opened her green eyes and swept across the crowd. She chuckled disdainfully, then said, "Too bad, I have no interest in their filthy blood. If they bother me, I'll let them know how the Bloody Queen handles annoyances!"
"Bloody Queen? Is this a nickname you came up with yourself?" Greem chuckled, "That's rather appropriate. I wonder when I will have the honor of experiencing it?"
"You?" Mary coolly gazed at Greem's face with her beautiful eyes, saying, "You'll have to work really hard for that!"
After that, she stretched her curvy body, laid on her side, and placed her head on Greem's lap, started her daily meditation.
Greem sighed softly.
After hearing her words, he realized that had definitely come from Mary's heart.
From the day they stepped onto the path of becoming Adepts, strength became the only measurement of status. When looking for a lover, even if Mary had a favorable impression of Greem, the huge difference between their strengths had become a gap, and Mary didn't want a 'partner' who was too weak.
Greem had a feeling that, if he had pushed for it, Mary wouldn't mind playing with him in bed. But if she was truly looking for a partner to spend the rest of her life with, Greem was only a weakling in her eyes, and would never be a candidate in his current state.
This cold reality watered down the joy of having a beauty sleeping on his lap. Greem shook his head and smiled wryly. Then he took a book out from his luggage and started to read.
In the current situation, where everyone was talking, meditating was rather rude. Therefore, Mary had used meditation to isolate herself from the crowd, avoiding the trouble that came from rejecting their invitations. It was actually a rather brilliant method, but now Greem had become her temporary guardian, and had to endure hostile glances from the crowd.
Evil Bugs had sat down cross-legged near Greem and Mary. His face was covered with a hood, making sure that nobody could see his current expression.
No matter what, there was no serious resentment between him and Greem. He set the trap for Greem out of a dispute caused by personal feelings. If not because he had promised Ellen, the new Apprentice leader, that he would protect his safety, Ellen would never have had the guts to provoke Mary.
Regarding how he felt about setting this trap, perhaps Evil Bugs had no feelings at all.
In his mind, Greem was just a roadside ant that he could kill at anytime. Not worth his time remembering. Perhaps, when he returned to the Swamp Tower after finishing his compulsory mission, the person with the name 'Greem' would have long since vanished, never to be seen again.
Therefore, For Evil Bugs, Greem had never been his enemy. Only Mary was qualified to be his enemy.