Published at 20th of January 2021 03:05:06 AM
Although the Holy City had been experiencing high economic pressure the past two years, that was clearly part of the long-term plan that the higher-ups came up with . In fact, the benefits could be seen and felt by those at the bottom rung of power . The Earth had changed way too much in the past few years .
After entering the Star Alliance and having a broader outlook, the higher-ups of the Holy City no longer limited their vision to conquering the Fifth Dimension . They opened up more information to other forces on Earth . There were already signs of this happening when Wang Zhong had just entered the Holy City . The higher-ups of the Holy City had finally realized that the Fifth Dimension and the Fourth Dimension were interconnected and complemented each other .
Every planet in the Fourth Dimension was extremely precious . They were the cradle of civilization and life . Life was born there, something that the level-8 civilizations in the divine territory and even the four races in Heaven couldn’t recreate . Otherwise, they wouldn’t need to conquer the boundary worlds and spread their religion in low-level civilizations . If they could create life, they would just create a bunch of planets themselves and help to evolve various races . Life is a gift of the universe and every planet was unique .
Indeed, the Fifth Dimension had a broader vision and provided better space and conditions for cultivation . However, there were many drawbacks too . For example, the fertility rate of the Holy City couldn’t compare to that of Earth because of their world’s unique environment . Not only was it because the genes of experts were such that it was difficult for them to produce offspring, but also, soul worlds ultimately couldn’t replace real worlds .
In the Star Alliance, even the superior level-8 civilizations placed great emphasis on the Fourth Dimension where they were born and were committed to the development of their birthplace . They accumulated a large amount of resources at their birthplaces . As a result, some Fourth Dimension worlds that had birthed a high-level civilization possessed cultivation conditions better than that of the divine territory .
The elites of the Holy City began to travel between the Earth and the Holy City repeatedly . The Holy City had acquired a large amount of precious resources from the Star Alliance, and a substantial amount of it was used to transform the Earth . The elites of the Holy City were being sent to “clean up” the restricted regions on Earth .
Numerous restricted regions were opened up, and the unknown regions on Earth’s map were identified . The conquest of the ocean had been completed a year ago . The ocean that seemed unconquerable to humans previously had become an ordinary and calm backyard pond . Large numbers of “powerful” marine creatures were hunted every day, providing Earthlings with marine biological resources that were rich in energy . This provided sufficient resources and materials for Earth, which was experiencing a period of great reconstruction . This provided mutated beasts and refugees, who typically gathered outside of city protection walls, with new chances to survive .
The Earth had been falling apart since the Dark Ages . However, with the abundance of resources and the expansion of transportation networks, Earth had been reshaped by the drastic reforms that the Holy City planned . Various Empires joined the Federation and were divided into administrative provinces .
Large-scale migrations were carried out in barren lands in North America, South Asia, and Eastern Europe . Most of the people involved were mutated beasts and refugees, as well as minority races like the Blood Race, the Ghost Race, and the Werewolves, who had been ostracized by the rest of the world . The Federation had allocated specific regions for them in those barren lands . Those regions were either governed by the Federation or the people themselves . They would be provided with large amounts of resources and food as there were expectations that more powerful and evolved bloodlines would appear on Earth one day .
This was an era where hundreds of forces rose to power . In contrast to the pessimism of the higher-ups in the Holy City that was generated by the changes, Earth didn’t experience high economic pressure . An abundance of resources and an overall improvement in security made Earthlings extremely satisfied . All Earthlings had been putting their energy into expanding their cities . Earth was prospering and displaying remarkable vitality .
The Federation, Tianjing .
Tianjing used to be merely a 2nd class city, yet it was among the top 10 cities of Earth now .
The first reason behind this change was the rise of the Tianjing Academy . By the time Wang Zhong became the top Heavenly Soul in the Holy City and went back to Tianjing to live in seclusion for two years, the Federation had already viewed Tianjing Academy as a holy place on Earth, making Tianjing a first-class city . The Assassin Family rose to power and set up the Federation’s first international trade market in Tianjing, making Tianjing central to the Federation’s economy . Since then, the Living Rune Research Laboratory had been opened in Tianjing, and the Copperfield Family moved there too . Many other powerful families and big enterprises decided to move to or invest in Tianjing . As a result, Tianjing was going through dramatic changes every day . The city area had been expanded more than six times its original size, and it was very prosperous there .
Tianjing was prospering with its excellent education and exponentially growing economy, attracting the attention of countless Earthlings . However, no one knew that in this New World City located in the Assassin Family’s private territory, there was a terrifyingly powerful base hidden here filled with Heavenly Souls .
In a video call, a middle-aged person from the Illusion Race was talking to Ma Dong with a smile . “Mister Ma Dong, the next batch of supplies will be delivered three days later with reference to Earth time . These supplies include five D-class spiritual devices and two D-class aura compressors from the Machinery Race, twenty D-class type-3 quantum guns, and one C-class cruise ship . Seven types of level-9 elixirs will be delivered, and there will be a hundred of each type, as well as some B- and C-level metals, and some other elixirs . Not to forget, Master Wang Zhong tasked us to pass on these thirty foundation-building practices and introductory elixir books . These are a continuation of the previous resources . Please take note and check the supplies when they are delivered . The same old rules apply . Transfer the funds anonymously through the dimensional bank and don’t leave traces of our transactional data . ”
“You have worked hard, Mister Cabos . Rest assured that I will abide by the rules . ” Ma Dong was being very modest and polite in front of the camera . Although the Illusion Race people had been very polite to him too throughout all their interactions, Ma Dong knew that it was because of Wang Zhong and their Young Master . At this crucial time, Earth definitely shouldn’t be arrogant, and he needed to be careful in doing things . If he overstepped, he would be bringing shame onto Wang Zhong and the Earth[a] . As for the anonymous transaction…
The Illusion Race weren’t dumb and knew what was going on . It was the squeaky wheel that got the grease . Earth was merely a level-4 civilization, yet it enjoyed the treatment of a quasi-level-5 civilization . This made many people jealous, and it was inevitable that this would attract trouble . If the Earth got unlucky, a powerful force from the Star Alliance might target it . The Illusion Race wanted no part of this . Other than Jhonas acting as the middleman, the main reason behind why they were doing business with the Earth and providing it with some material resources was because of Master Wang Zhong . However, they didn’t want to make their business dealings public . They didn’t mind secretly giving Earth some practical benefits to establish good relations with Wang Zhong, yet they would never publicly acknowledge that they had business dealings with the Earth…
Ma Dong knew all these, so he wouldn’t completely trust the Illusion Race, but he wouldn’t suspect that they had malicious intentions out of the blue . After all, the Earth was the side that was benefiting, and the Illusion Race was just investing in them . It didn’t matter whether they were wholeheartedly helping the Earth or had ulterior motives . The fact that the Illusion Race was willing to invest in and help the Earth in times of trouble was already a great favor to them . It would be unreasonable to ask more of them .
“That’s great! I have already finished practicing the technique scriptures that Brother Wang Zhong sent the previous time . I was just fretting over how there was no other way I could follow up . ”
As Ma Dong ended the video call, he could hear a happy voice ring by his side, giving him a shock . He didn’t know whether to laugh or cry . Ever since his sister became a Heavenly Soul, her footsteps got more and more silent . If not for her young and sunny disposition, she would seem like a ghost .
“What about Laura and Sharmie?” Ma Dong casually asked . “Also, I’m your biological brother, but you seem more attached to Wang Zhong than me . ”
Emily rolled her eyes . “They are making great improvement now . The scriptures that Brother Wang Zhong sent us are way too profound . They are on a whole new level as compared to the cultivation scriptures from the Holy City . —Oh right, when are you going to let us go to the divine territory?”
“You want to go there so badly?” Ma Dong smiled . “Do Laura and the others think the same way too?”
“Of course . We can’t wait to set off . ”
“You guys are too anxious . ” Ma Dong smiled and shook his head . With the help of Heavenly Treasures Street, he and Wang Zhong had met in person once, and he had a better understanding of the situation in the divine territory as compared to the Patriarch Society . “Several batches of aura compressors from the Machinery Race are being remodeled . The cultivation environment generated by the No . 1 Aura Chamber is not that much inferior to that of the divine territory . It’s enough for your current stage now . Making a reckless trip to the divine territory will not help Wang Zhong at all . Don’t forget that we must deal with our internal conflicts first before resolving external ones . There’s still a batch of people in the Holy City that you need to deal with . You should focus on reaching Peak Foundational Stage soon . Wang Zhong is organizing his thoughts on accumulating a Void Core . It’s not too late to go to the divine territory after all of you are able to accumulate a Void Core and deal with the trouble in the Holy City . By the way, when are Oly and the others arriving?”
“Around 3 in the afternoon . ”
“Okay, you and Laura are in charge of them . ” Ma Dong contemplated . “Let them rest for two days, and make sure that they are familiar with the No . 1 Aura Chamber . New aura compressors will arrive three days later, and I’ll make sure that the No . 2 Aura Chamber is up and working the following day for them to use . You’ll handle the cultivation scriptures . Although they are trustworthy people, we can’t completely leave the scriptures in their hands . You can decide which scripture suits which person the best and ask them to copy it out . ”
“Sure . ” Emily nodded . She knew the current situation of the Earth and the divine territory very well as Ma Dong had never hidden any information from her .
The Assassin Family had spent all their fortune on this secret base in New World City, which was built with the help of Wang Zhong’s constant dedication and the Illusion Race . Twelve D-class aura compressors from the Machinery Race and their most-advanced high-gravity space technology could closely emulate the cultivation environment of the divine territory . Although the spiritual pressure and gravity were only equivalent to that at the outermost area of the Land, this was enough to produce a tempering effect on people who had not accumulated their Void Cores .
It was a pity that it was expensive to create these conditions . Ma Dong and Wang Zhong had devoted all their resources, yet they were only able to create a chamber of about five hundred square meters .
A batch of “New World” elites were summoned here to cultivate . Not many people belonged to this category . The first batch comprised Laura, Sharmie, Emily, and Gui Xinying . They used the No . 1 Aura Chamber, which was created from 12 aura compressors and only sufficient for the usage of a few people . This batch was certainly not the most elite among all the Earthlings . In fact, they were inferior to many top experts in the Holy City . However, one fact was certain . No matter the circumstances, they would always be on Wang Zhong’s side .
Oly, the vice-captain of Blazing Angel City and one of the top 10 experts in the CHF previously, was part of the second batch . Another person from the second batch was Papada, the captain of Blazing Angel City’s team; he was already a crazy admirer of Wang Zhong since the CHF days . His admiration for Wang Zhong had only increased as Wang Zhong reached newer heights .
Also, there was a special little guy called Simon Colby . He was the child of Colby and Lily from the Tianjing Academy . Although he was only six years old, he was extremely gifted and doted on by everyone . Simon had received a lot of guidance from Wang Zhong when he was still in Tianjing previously, and Ma Dong had given him a lot of resources too . With their help and his innate talent, Simon reached the Heavenly Soul Stage at the mere age of six . He was known as Earth’s second genius after Wang Zhong . Many said that he was the new hope of Earth and represented a radical change from Earth’s new generation…
Many things in the Holy City had degenerated, and the Earthlings needed a new order . The New World Aura Chamber was Ma Dong and the Assassin Family’s trump card .
After sending Emily away and finishing various official duties, Ma Dong was rather tired by the time the sky had darkened .
The empty office seemed even colder and more lonely at night . It had become Ma Dong’s living quarters long ago . After closing the door, Ma Dong stood in front of the thick French windows with a glass of wine .
Standing alone in the tall office building was one of Ma Dong’s hobbies when he was not busy . From there, he could see New World City and Tianjing’s bustling night scene, as well as the endless stream of vehicles and colorful lights . He could see the energetic young people who were immersed in the peaceful nightlife .
He had once been one of them . During his student days, he was known as the Nightclub Prince, and his only worry was that he didn’t have enough pocket money . However, money was just a number to him now . If he wanted to, he could summon any form of entertainment that existed on Earth to his office immediately . He could get any girl he wanted and anything else he wanted . However, even though he had the means to enjoy himself now, he wasn’t in the mood for such things anymore .
The thick French windows had been specially processed . They posed no obstruction to one’s view, yet they blocked out all sound . The whole office was quiet, as if it was completely isolated from the hustle and bustle of the outside world . From inside, it was like watching a silent and boring black-and-white movie . Ma Dong seemed to have nothing to do with the lively scene outside . He was just a bystander who couldn’t blend himself into the night outside, not that it would have evoked any emotions in him .
Yet, his heart skipped a beat as he closed the curtains . He put his wine glass on the table and opened a drawer . An ancient lamp made of bronze was lying quietly in it . He had bought this from the Illusion Race . It was a Dimensional Soul-Summoning Lamp!
There was a small bag beside the bronze lamp, which was filled with a handful of hair that seemed to have been lying around for some time .
Ma Dong carefully picked up that handful of hair, as if he was scared that the hair would be damaged if he was too rough with it . His domineering and mature disposition during the day was nowhere to be seen now . His eyes looked empty and lonely . He had everything he once pursued and craved, but no one to share it with .
Melancholy and loneliness were emotions that Ma Dong had wanted to get rid of many times . However, the more he wanted to get rid of these emotions, the more he couldn’t; he had sunk in deeper instead .
He had regretted it countless times . Thinking back now, all the past incidents regarding Milami and the Kaiser Empire were no big deal . His mindset, power, and way of dealing with things had changed with his status .
Frankly speaking, there had been many chances for him to change this fate previously . However, he was too immature at the time and unable to grasp the chances . He wasn’t able to see a better way to deal with the problem then . Now, he only had this lock of hair to reminisce about the past .
There was a legend in the Fifth Dimension . Every soul of life was unique . Unless it suffered a unique soul attack, the soul would still be there even if its body was destroyed . The Fifth Dimension was a spiritual world to begin with, so one’s soul would just roam around the Fifth Dimension after death . Without the protection of a physical body, the soul’s consciousness would be extremely weak, just like a lonely ghost . It might find a suitable opportunity to project onto a Fourth-Dimensional World to reincarnate, or perhaps it might gradually disappear with time .
In the divine territory, there had been many successful instances of the summoning of souls . Furthermore, there were even legends of resurrecting the dead in Heaven . It was said that the four great races of Heaven had the power to do so…
Wang Zhong pursued excellence and wanted to become the strongest as he wanted the entire Earth civilization to have a peaceful life . However, Ma Dong had another reason for pursuing more power . He had greater ambition as he imagined a day when he could come into contact with the so-called four races in Heaven and verify the resurrection legend . If it was true, he could resurrect that person and make up for his mistakes in the past .
As for now…
Ma Dong put that lock of hair into the Soul-Summoning Lamp . He had tried this countless times . Although he hadn’t succeeded yet, he never doubted the soul-summoning legend . It wasn’t a baseless legend as many people had succeeded in summoning souls with the right tools . The Illusion Race were considered to be masters of refining weapons, and this lamp was the best he could get . However, summoning a soul was never easy and depended on one’s luck too .
He took in a deep breath and slowly recited a spell . An ancient green light could be seen coming from the lamp, flashing brightly and dimming suddenly with a rhythm, just like Ma Dong’s current mood .
He waited quietly as the feeling of loneliness consumed him . However, as long as the flames in the lamp didn’t extinguish, the result was not certain, and there was still hope . Until then, he would still hold onto the glimmer of hope in his heart .
[a]I put the “the” for when it refers to the planet (one of many) .
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