Book 16, Starmist Sea – Chapter 16, Familiar Face
The Arena was divided into three levels. The Highgod Arena, the God Arena, and the Demigod Arena. There was only a single Highgod Arena, three God Arenas, and just three Demigod Arenas as well.
“Boss, which level should we visit first?” Bebe hurriedly asked.
“The Highgod battles should be the most exciting. Naturally, we’ll go there.” Linley laughed. The others also were rather more interested in the Highgod battles, and so all of them followed the directions on the walkway and headed directly towards the Highgod Arena.
Moments later, Linley’s group arrived at the vast Arena.
The Highgod Arena. The central dueling area was a round, empty expanse of land that was five kilometers in diameter. Around it was an extremely dense cluster of spectator seats. At a glance, there were nearly a million seats.
“The Highgod Arena is a large one. The other two arenas aren’t nearly as large.” The big-bearded Bates said. Linley’s group headed through the corridors to find some empty seats, then sat down.
Deity-level combatants were able to see to a very great distance. Thus, everyone was able to see clearly across multiple kilometers to view the two men battling in the central dueling area.
Currently, in mid-air, two figures were hovering while staring at each other. One was a muscular, one-horned man. The other was a devilish, bewitching red haired woman. What attracted Linley’s attention wasn’t these two people who were preparing for combat; it was the edges of the central area. In front of the viewing platforms was one blood red armored warrior after another!
At the edges of the circular viewing platforms, every few meters, there was an island guards warrior.
“There are actually over a thousand island guards here!” Linley inspected them carefully. These people alone represented a force of a thousand Highgods. In addition, these were just the ones who were standing at the edges. It must be understood that other areas, such as the roving patrols going through the corridors, had quite a few island guards as well.
The number of island guards present at this arena was simply astonishing!
“Wow. There’s quite a few island guards.” Bebe sighed in amazement.
Aches laughed. “This is the Highgod Arena. They are here to prevent the shockwaves from the battle from harming the viewers. Thus, they arranged for so many island guards present. The number of island guards at the God Arena are far fewer, while the Demigod Arena has virtually no island guards present.”
“How much damage could shockwaves from a Demigod-level fight cause?” The big-bearded Bates chuckled as well.
While chatting, Linley’s group also carefully watched the battle going on in the center of the arena. Two figures, transformed into blurs, were currently battling as fast as lightning. In mid-air, multiple rays of light flashed, while Linley’s group continued to watch carefully.
The devilish red haired beauty actually brandished forth a red staff, striking down like lightning towards the horned man. “Aaaah!” A desolate scream could be heard, and the horned man was sent smashing away. And then, with a queer ‘boom’, his body exploded.
“Clarinda, second victory!” A voice rang out.
The devilish red haired beauty flew directly down towards the corridors below the arena.
“Too weak!” Watching this battle, Linley secretly shook his head. “Just by using a slight amount of the rather unique ‘Explosion’ profound mystery of the Elemental Laws of Fire, she was able to win twice. The quality of the combatants in this Arena is really low.” Linley had simply seen far too many powerful experts.
Bluefire, Beirut, Learmonth, Royalwing, Elquin, Phusro…
Even the Ganmontin he had defeated was far superior to these people.
Next to Linley, the big-bearded Bates said softly, “Linley, any Highgods who wish to participate in this arena are permitted to, so of course there will be differences in quality. However, true experts will occasionally appear as well, which is why the ordinary battles will of course be considered by you as uninteresting.”
“Occasionally appear?” Linley shook his head, feeling resigned.
The reason he had come was to watch experts do battle. According to their plans, they would only stay for a day or two at this Miluo Island. After finishing their shopping at the Free Castle, they would leave. He didn’t have time to wait here for experts to appear.
“Unfortunate.” Linley sighed.
“The experts here at the Arena are actually fairly common.” Bates said in a hushed voice. “The Highgod Arena has a rule; if one can defeat ten combatants in a row, then all items at the Free Castle will be 10% off. If one wins fifty victories, everything in the Free Castle will be 20% off. But if you win a hundred victories! All items in the Free Castle will be at half price, and in addition, a reward of ten billion inkstones will be given! At the same time, one will be qualified to enter a secret area of the western part of the island to do a special viewing!”
Half price shopping and a ten billion inkstone reward? Linley didn’t care too much about those, but…
“A special viewing of a secret area in the western island? What does that mean?” Linley was rather puzzled.
The eastern part of the island was publicly open to anyone, but the western part of the island was forbidden to outsiders. However, Linley had never heard of a ‘secret area’ in the western part of the island.
“Miluo Island is jointly controlled and run by five great clans. The disciples of these five clans, as well as the island guards, all live on the western part of the island. However, supposedly, the western part of the island has an extremely important hidden area. Only someone who receives a joint invitation from the five clans or someone who wins a hundred victories is qualified to go pay a visit.” Bates sighed.
Linley couldn’t help but feel curious.
Five major clans jointly managed Miluo Island. Then…what was this so-called secret area on the western part of the island?
“Bates, you’ve never gone to take a look?” Linley looked at him.
“I would very much like to.” Bates shook his head and laughed. “Only, I value my own life rather highly. Winning ten victories, for me, wouldn’t be too hard. But a hundred? After all, not all combatants will be very weak. If an expert suddenly appears, won’t I be finished?”
“Can it be that nobody has been so lucky as to only encounter weaklings during the hundred battles?” Linley asked.
“Impossible.” Bates shook his head. “Even if you are lucky and only encounter weak Highgods during the first 99 battles whom you defeat, at the 100th battle, the five clans will arrange for one of their own experts to go test the challenger! Every single person who was truly victorious in a hundred battles is a true expert, and has at least my level of power.”
Linley nodded slightly.
It made sense. The five clans wouldn’t so casually toss out ten billion inkstones to someone who was lucky but weak.
“The reward alone is ten billion inkstones. The five clans truly are rich and profligate.” Linley said to himself.
“Linley, if you try for yourself, winning a hundred battles would be very easy.” Bates said enticingly. “Generally speaking, someone at the Six Star Fiend level is capable of winning a hundred battles. Lucky Five Star Fiends also have a shot. After all, generally speaking, you might not see a Seven Star Fiend participate in the Arena even so much as once every ten thousand years.”
Linley chuckled. That was of course the case.
Would an almighty Seven Star Fiend care about ten billion inkstones? But of course, as time passed, over the course of ten thousand years, perhaps a Seven Star Fiend might appear to take part.
“Boss, quick, look!” Bebe said urgently.
“Eh?” Linley looked at Bebe, puzzled. Not just Bebe; even Delia and the others all called out, “Linley, quick, look at the person who appeared in mid-air. That’s the person we encountered back then!”
After having seen the first battle, Linley wasn’t too interested in the arena battles any longer.
But at this moment, Linley immediately turned to look. What he saw shocked him!
In the wide, empty space, there was a familiar figure!
“Him?” A look of amazement appeared on Linley’s face. “Who would have expected that an event which happens perhaps once every ten thousand years is happening right now. Such a powerful expert really has come to participate.”
In the empty space of the arena, a cold, callous man, dressed in a long black robe and carrying a warblade on his back was standing there. His long black hair fluttered loosely in the wind. He stood there like a glacier who had existed for countless years, icy and unapproachable.
In his eyes, electric sparks were dancing.
“It’s him.” Bates cleared his throat and said in amazement, “If he participates, isn’t he guaranteed to win a hundred victories?”
The nearby Bebe said, puzzled, “Eh? I remember that he travelled faster than us. Logically speaking, he should’ve arrived at Miluo Island long before us. He shouldn’t be here with us at the same time.”
Travelling by himself, that black-haired man was indeed very fast.
But Linley thought back to the conversations of the others in the restaurants.
From Bluemaple City to Miluo Island, all of the larger bandit forces had been destroyed.
“Perhaps it was because he destroyed so many bandit forces on the way. Or perhaps he was training on the way.” Linley said to himself.
Linley immediately began to watch the arena carefully. After all, the person battling was the powerful black-haired man.
“You are too weak. Beat it!” A calm voice echoed in the air above the arena. The speaker was the black-haired man. His opponent was dressed in a long white robe, and was a handsome, violet-haired youth who wielded a scepter that was flashing with white light.
The viewing area immediately burst into a commotion. It had been many years since they saw someone so arrogant, to order the opponent to beat it before the battle even began.
The violet-haired youth, hearing this word, couldn’t help but feel enraged. “You’ll only know after fighting!”
The black-haired man couldn’t help but stare at him.
Suddenly, two bolts of electric light shot out from the black-haired man’s eyes. The speed was so fast that the violet-haired youth wasn’t able to dodge at all. It directly slammed into the violet-haired youth’s body, and the violet-haired youth trembled slightly, then collapsed, never to rise again.
The hundreds of thousands of onlookers were all momentarily stunned.
The entire viewing platform was utterly still.
“Weaklings should not come. If you do, you are looking for death. Next challenger. Someone stronger. I’ll just keep fighting here!” The black-haired man said calmly.
This was an extremely arrogant display, because if one engaged in consecutive battles, one wouldn’t have the chance to choose one’s opponent. Regardless of who the next opponent was, he had to do battle! Even if the next opponent was an Asura, he’d still have to do battle.
But of course, there was no way an Asura would participate.
Thus, as long as one wasn’t completely hot-heated, generally speaking only a true expert would dare to do consecutive battles.
“Lomio, one victory!” A voice rang out from within the arena. “Everyone, right now, Mr. Lomio has chosen to engage in consecutive battles. Any Highgod, no matter who, is permitted to participate. Anyone who is interested can immediately go down below to register. Alright, now, time for the second battle!”
Linley watched without blinking.
He watched straight from the first to the tenth battle!
As for the eleventh battle…it wasn’t that Linley didn’t want to continue watching, it was that he no longer had the chance to.
This was because every person who wanted to fight in the Arena could only fight ten battles each day. Even if one wanted to fight a hundred battles, one would have to spread it out over ten days. Lomio fought ten consecutive battles, gaining victory easily in each one. His power was so great that the onlookers all found it hard to breathe as they watched.
“Too powerful.” Linley’s heart was trembling. “This person is very skilled in both material attacks and soul attacks. In addition, from start to finish, he’s never even drawn his warblade.”
“Lomio.” Linley memorized this name.
They went to watch a few battles at the God Arena and the Demigod Arena. Bebe even joined the God Arena and fought ten battles in a row. Given Bebe’s power, just by unleashing a bit of his might, he easily won ten victories!
After leaving the Arena, Linley’s group headed straight for the Free Castle.
“Bebe, how bored are you? You actually went to compete.” Linley laughed.
“Ten victories, y’know. At least I got this medallion. I’ll be getting a 10% discount when shopping.” Bebe said delightedly.
Linley was speechless. How much money could shopping possibly use up? 10% off was nothing to them. Given the wealth which Linley and Bebe currently had, a discount of 10% was meaningless.
“The Free Castle is beautifully built.” Linley looked at the distant, dark green walls and the red-topped ancient castle. This castle’s entrance was like a nonstop flood of people.
“This place has many products for sale. Some of the Starmist Sea, some from other continents. It has even more things for sale than the Blacksand Castles of the Redbud Continent.” Aches sighed in amazement.
Linley’s group immediately entered through the gateway.
At the sides of the entrance to the Free Castle, a man with black hair who was dressed in a long, loose robe was lazily lying down in the grass, holding and nursing a bottle of wine. If Linley had seen him, he would immediately have recognized him – this was an old friend who, like them, had come from the Yulan continent. Cesar!
Cesar currently looked very dispirited.
“Last time? Haha, last time?” Cesar raised his head to laugh loudly, his tears dripping down.
Quite a few people on the streets turned to look at him, but none of them would be so bored as to interfere.
“Eh?” Linley, already at the gateway, suddenly turned to look into the distance. He stared carefully, but around him was a sea of people. “Could I have misheard?” Linley, just now, vaguely felt as though he had heard Cesar’s voice.
But there were many people with similar voices, and although Linley looked carefully, he didn’t see Cesar.
“I must have heard wrong.” Linley shook his head and sighed.
“Boss, let’s head in. What are you looking at?” Bebe said, and Delia looked towards Linley as well.
“Let’s go in.” Linley laughed. He thus entered the Free Castle along with Delia.
But what Linley didn’t know was that Cesar was lying in the grass by the road. If Cesar had stood up, Linley would perhaps have seen him, but he was lying down…how could Linley discover him?