Book 19, Metamorphosis – Chapter 12, Four Badge Colors
Flamebone Mountain. The entire mountain swirled with flame.
Two blurs streaked through the horizon, pausing in the air above Flamebone Mountain. It was Linley and Bebe.
“Crunch!” Bebe viciously bit into a fruit, lowering his head to stare down at the mountain peak below. “Boss, last time we came to this place, we were blocked by those guards. It was because we weren’t Lord Prefects or Lords of Tartarus. It’s only been two or three months, right? Boss, you are a Tartarus Lord now. I wonder what sort of looks those guards will have on their faces.”
As he spoke, he casually tossed the core of the already-eaten fruit off to one side.
“Let’s go.” Laughing calmly, Linley flew into the skies, with Bebe following behind.
Atop the mountain peak, there was a completely pitch-black, ancient-looking castle. It, too, was wreathed in flames. There were still many guards patrolling outside, and at the front gate, there were more than ten people, divided into two lines, standing there. Upon seeing Linley and Bebe, one of the black-armored guards stepped forward slightly. “Eh? Them again?”
This black-armored guard, amazingly, was the guard who had received Linley last time.
It had only been a few months, after all. The guards here were very rarely changed.
“Hey, why did you two run over here again?” The black-armored guard couldn’t help but frown as he spoke. “Last time, I told you two already. We can only open the interspatial gate to Lords of Tartarus or Lord Prefects.”
Linley and Bebe landed.
“Boss, these guards don’t seem to know your status.” Bebe said, puzzled. “Didn’t that guy say that in one day, your information would spread to Flamebone Mountain? Why don’t these guards know? We spent quite a few days flying from Flamebone Mountain to this place. Boss, your information should have arrived here long ago.”
Linley glanced at the guards, then laughed calmly. “Information regarding me should have made its way to the high level members of Flamebone Mountain, but these ordinary soldiers haven’t gotten the word yet.” Linley didn’t want to waste words with these ordinary guards, and so he immediately strode forward. His sudden movement forward naturally caused these guards to all feel surprised.
“Halt!” More than ten guards stared at Linley.
“The two of you, this is no ordinary place. You can’t just barge in. We aren’t able to stop you, but you don’t dare offend the Sovereign either, right?” The leader of the black-armored guards stared at Linley and Bebe with his blue eyes. Last time, they already learned of Linley and Bebe’s power, and so they didn’t dare to act too wildly.
“I am the Redcliff Lord.” Linley said calmly.
The ten-plus black-armored guards were instantly stupefied.
“You must be joking.” The black-armored guard couldn’t believe it. Laughing, he looked at Linley. “It’s only been a few months.”
First, a hundred victories in the arena. Then, the challenge to a Lord of Tartarus…resulting in victory! All in just a few months? This sort of speed was far too fast. The black-armored guards didn’t dare to believe it.
“Stop wasting words.” Bebe shouted impatiently. “If my Boss tells you that he is, then he is! Hurry up and find your leader. He will definitely know the news regarding the new Redcliff Lord, Linley.”
The black-armored guards looked at each other, then studied the looks on Linley and Bebe’s faces carefully.
“Captain, they seem to be telling the truth.” The black-armored guards whispered to each other secretly through divine sense.
“But it’s only been a few months. This is too wild.”
Although the black-armored guards all felt it was crazy, the leading black-armored guard still said, “Fine, I’ll go make the inquiries. Please wait here, the two of you.” After speaking, the black-armored guard immediately flew into the depths of the castle, while Linley and Bebe waited patiently outside.
The remaining black-armored guards continued to stare at Linley and Bebe in surprise.
These black-armored guards clearly didn’t dare believe it.
Quite a while later…
“Redcliff Lord, Redcliff Lord!” A deep voice rang out. Linley and Bebe turned to look, only to see a muscular, blue-armored man who was slightly taller than even Linley stride out with big steps. The black-armored guard behind him stared at Linley in amazement. The blue-armored man’s gaze fell directly upon Linley, and his eyes immediately lit up.
“Redcliff Lord, we just received word not long ago, and we weren’t in a hurry to pass it down. Who would have imagined that you would come here so quickly, Redcliff Lord?” The blue-armored man chortled as he spoke. “Oh, let me introduce myself. I am Dilas [Ji’la’si]!”
“Linley.” Linley laughed in acknowledgment.
Hearing Linley report his name, the muscular, blue-armored man nodded and laughed, “Given that we received information regarding you already, we are certain of your status, especially upon seeing this youth by your side. However, your Lordship, please still provide some small bit of proof for us. You can either Dragonform or show off that invisible, godly sword you possess.”
Linley just stretched out his right hand.
Azure-golden scales instantly covered his hand.
“That’s more than enough.” The muscular, blue-armored man laughed. “Please pardon us. We do indeed need to be cautious. Let me lead the way, your Lordship. Please follow me.”
Linley and Bebe followed this muscular, blue-armored man inwards.
Bebe turned his head to glance sideways at the black-armored guards, intentionally letting out a sniff.
“He really is a Lord of Tartarus!” The leader of the black-armored guards rubbed his nose, sighing in disbelief. “How long has it been? Last time, we waved them off, but in the blink of an eye, he’s a Lord of Tartarus.”
“This Lord Linley is fairly good-tempered. If it was the likes of the Flamebone Lord, Captain, and you dared to be so disrespectful, you most likely would have been killed in a fit of anger.” The nearby black-armored guards smirked and laughed. Although…this castle belonged to the Sovereign, the normal affairs of the castle were carried out by a Sovereign’s Emissary.
The Sovereign’s Emissary was the one who arranged for these guards to be present. If a Lord of Tartarus killed a petty guard, would the Sovereign’s Emissary get into a dispute with a Lord of Tartarus, for the sake of the petty guard?
“When I think about it, it is rather frightening. Still, I continue to feel as though I’m in a dream.” The black-armored guard couldn’t help but look towards the direction in which Linley and Bebe had just walked, shaking his head and sighing.
Linley and Bebe, under the guidance of the blue-armored Dilas, continued to advance down a wide corridor. This wide corridor actually slowly went deeper into the ground. Although it went downwards, it was still wide enough for more than ten people to traverse simultaneously, and was at least ten meters high.
Only, given that they were underground, it was rather dark.
“The interspatial gate was built in the heart of the Flamebone Mountain.” The muscular ‘Dilas’ walked while laughing and explaining. “The Planar Battlefield is connected to the Seven Divine Planes and the Four Higher Realms. In total, there are eleven interspatial gates. According to legend…this great work was completed by the four Overgods working in unison.”
“In unison?” Linley said, amazed.
Indeed, only the likes of an Overgod could construct interspatial gates of this level. However, Linley hadn’t imagined that the four Overgods actually joined forces for it.
“Hehe, your Lordship, that’s just what I’ve heard.” Dilas chortled.
“Overgods…Overgods…they are so powerful, but I’ve never seen one.” Bebe muttered.
Dilas just said with a laugh, “Never seen one? The Overgods are always around you.”
“Oh?” Bebe stared.
“We are always surrounded by and live within the Laws and the Edicts. The four Overgods are the embodiment of the four great Edicts. Naturally, they are always by your side.” Dilas said with a smile, and then he glanced towards the front. “Oh, we’re almost there! The interspatial gate is just up ahead. His Lordship is there awaiting you two.”
Linley looked forward. He could faintly sense a unique aura from up ahead.
At the end of the corridor was an extremely wide, heavily guarded chamber. In the center of the chamber, there was a black pool that was around ten meters in diameter. In the center of the pool, there was a ‘gate’ that was five meters long, ten meters high. This gate stood there in the center of the pool, emanating a black light. Linley could sense that the unique aura was coming from within it.
“Lord Linley.” A voice rang out.
Linley turned and saw that in the left side of the hall, there was a silver-haired elder as well as a group of blue-armored guards.
The silver-haired elder smiled as he walked over. “We just saw the news regarding you not long ago, Lord Linley. So you are a member of the Azure Dragon clan. I am old friends with Patriarch Gislason of your Azure Dragon clan. Oh, I forgot to introduce myself. I am Gallen [Gao’lun]!”
“Mr. Gallen.” Linley smiled. “I wish to enter the Planar Battlefield. I’m not sure what I need to do?”
“This is simple.” The silver-haired elder made a pair of palm-sized badges appear in his hand. These two badges emanated a black aura, but although both were covered with black light, they were made from different materials. One was made from a completely blood-red material, while the other was made from a completely black material. “Of the two badges, the blood-red one represents a ‘commander’, while this black one represents an ordinary soldier! At the same time…it also represents that you two belong to the side of ‘Darkness’ in this battle.”
As he spoke, he delivered the two badges, which flew to Linley and Bebe.
Linley accepted the blood-red badge, while Bebe accepted the black one.
“Please bind them and take them into your body.” The silver-haired elder laughed calmly as he spoke. “After you enter the Planar Battlefield, if you encounter someone on the same side, once you draw near, you’ll be able to sense each other’s badge’s aura.”
Linley laughed. This was the same concept as the badges of the Four Divine Beasts clan.
Linley and Bebe immediately bound the badges by blood and took them into their bodies.
“The two of you, the stone tablet over here has some information regarding military merits carved into it. Please take a look.” The silver-haired elder pointed to a nearby stone tablet that was erect against the wall, roughly one meter wide and three meters tall.
Linley and Bebe’s eyes lit up. This time, Linley had come especially for the sake of accumulating military merits. He immediately walked to the stone tablet, looking through it carefully.
The information on the stone tablet was quite simple, but upon seeing it, Linley took a deep breath.
“How brutal.” Linley said to himself.
The rules of the Planar Wars…
Each war was divided into two sides. One side’s commanders would have red badges, with the soldiers having black badges. The other side’s commanders would have gold badges, with the soldiers having white badges. To become a commander, one had to be a Tartarus Lord, a Lord Prefect, an Asura, or someone on the same level. As for soldiers…they had to be Highgods.
For example, Linley and Bebe.
If they killed someone on their own side, they wouldn’t have rendered any military merits.
Only by killing enemies and acquiring a hundred white badges would they acquire a single drop of Sovereign’s Might. Upon acquiring ten thousand white badges, they would be able to acquire a Sovereign artifact. But of course, if they gained ten gold badges, they could also trade for a Sovereign artifact.
However, there was one thing…gold badges couldn’t be traded for Sovereign’s Might! To trade for Sovereign’s Might, one had to acquire white badges.
This destroyed any chance of one being able to acquire a large amount of Sovereign’s Might.
In addition, if one managed to kill five enemy commanders during the Planar Wars, after the battle concluded, the military merits could be recorded. Once the next Planar Wars began, if one killed five more commanders, the total military merits rendered would be ten, and by then, one could still trade for a Sovereign artifact.
“So it is cumulative?” Linley sighed. “And one has to kill ordinary soldiers? Isn’t that…just butchery?”
“Although it seems simple, the ordinary soldiers are all gathered in one place. To kill a hundred of them? You’d most likely suffer the attacks of ten thousand soldiers. Most Six Star Fiends and Seven Star Fiends possess spiritual attacks that are a tenth the power of a Lord Prefect’s. But an attack from ten thousand…even a Lord of Tartarus would have to flee, and would be killed if he didn’t flee fast enough.” The silver-haired elder, Gallen, said with a calm laugh.
Linley couldn’t help but nod.
If a commander encountered ten or perhaps a few dozen soldiers, it wouldn’t be too hard to massacre them.
But if the commander encountered a thousand or more than ten thousand soldiers…attacking would be suicide.
“Every single commander is hard to kill. Everyone who dares to enter has their own ways of preserving their lives. Thus, that’s why military merits can be accumulated over time!” The silver-haired elder, Gallen, said with a calm laugh. “If you take part in several Planar Wars, you’ll be able to accumulate enough military merits. But of course, you also might lose your life in the Planar Wars, resulting in all your efforts being for naught.”
Linley nodded slightly.
“Mr. Gallen, we’ll head in, then.” Linley immediately said.