Book 20, The Crown’s Riddle – Chapter 27, The Critical Point
“Lord Chegwin, the struggle going on up ahead for the red caltrop diamond is extremely tight. We need to go there right away.” One of the two Seven Star Fiends by Chegwin’s side sent frantically to Chegwin.
“Shut your mouth.” Chegwin sent back.
Although these two Seven Star Fiends were Chegwin’s subordinates, they didn’t participate in the last Planar War. Chegwin hadn’t told anyone about Linley either, and so these two didn’t recognize him.
“I didn’t expect that Linley would come as well.” Chegwin began to worry. “According to the intelligence reports regarding this red caltrop diamond, it is very likely that this is an Overgod talisman. Even if it isn’t, it is a Sovereign artifact level treasure. If I can acquire it, I would offer it to the Chief Sovereign! Perhaps the Chief Sovereign would think of a way to help me acquire a third Sovereign artifact.”
The Overgod talisman was within his grasp! How could Chegwin bear to give it up?
“I didn’t expect that you, Mr. Linley, would come as well.” Chegwin laughed calmly. “Might I ask what you have come here for, Mr. Linley?”
“Recently, there has been much rumor regarding this ‘red caltrop diamond’ treasure. I’m quite curious about it.” Linley said with a calm laugh while flying forward. “Chegwin, let us travel together.”
“It would be my honor.” Chegwin wasn’t impatient, instead opting to follow behind Linley.
Chegwin had seen Linley’s power, and he knew that if he were to fight against Linley head on, Linley would be able to kill his subordinates with the flip of a hand. As for Chegwin himself…although he had a soul-protecting Sovereign artifact and a defensive Sovereign artifact, making it hard for even Linley to kill him, it wouldn’t be too hard for Linley to drive him into chaotic space.
Chegwin didn’t have any divine clones located elsewhere. If he were to be driven into chaotic space, it would be hard for even a Sovereign to locate him.
After all, chaotic space was so boundlessly vast that it was comparable to nearly almost all of the other planes combined.
How would a Sovereign search for someone in such a vast expanse of space? The only way it could be done was if a divine clone accompanied the Sovereign to point the Sovereign in the correct direction.
“Lord Chegwin, the experts over there are more and more numerous. If you don’t intervene, then Leer [Li’ya] and I won’t be able to hold on by ourselves.” The Seven Star Fiend sent frantically.
“Don’t be impatient.” Chegwin sent back. “Linley arrived. It won’t be so easy for others to acquire the red caltrop diamond.”
“Linley. Who is he?” The Seven Star Fiend sent back while giving a glance at Chegwin. Chegwin had never mentioned Linley to him in the past…after all, the story was an embarrassing one for Chegwin. Why would he discuss it with his subordinates?
“A Highgod Paragon.” This was Chegwin’s sole response.
The Seven Star Fiend was badly frightened.
As for Linley, he was puzzled. “Chegwin is the Emissary of the Chief Sovereign of Light. Can it be that he is here because the Chief Sovereign of Light has asked him to search for the Overgod talismans?” What Linley was worried about was that the Sovereigns were paying attention to this matter. Linley swept Chegwin with his gaze. Chegwin was currently behaving extremely respectfully.
The two Highgods behind Chegwin were fairly average in strength. Linley had never heard of them, nor did he care about them.
As far as the current Linley was concerned, ordinary Seven Star Fiends were indeed nothing. Even Lord Prefects and Asuras would just attract a bit of attention from Linley. After all…he already stood at the true peak. Amongst Deities, there were none capable of defeating him!
“Chegwin, I plan to speed up. Come with me.” With but a thought, Linley sent divine earth power surging out, surrounding the group of people.
A ray of earthen yellow light shot through the air, and a heartbeat later, Linley’s group had already arrived at a location deep within the Neville Mountains.
Deep within the Neville Mountains. A hundred figures were flocking here.
“Haha, I didn’t imagine that I, Brodie, would actually draw attention from and be surrounded by so many experts.” Laughter rang out from one mountain forest, and then, in midair, multiple figures suddenly appeared. There was a single figure within the forest as well. Clearly, these people had already completely surrounded Brodie.
Only, nobody dared to go seize it.
“So many people have actually come for it.” A big-bearded muscular dwarf mumbled, his green eyes sweeping the others with his gaze. “I recognize fifty six Seven Star Fiends, and the others are probably Six Star Fiends. In addition, there are even one or two Asura-level experts mixed in.”
Everyone understood that the red caltrop diamond was a hot, yet hard-to-hold item.
Most likely, if anyone went to seize it, that person would suffer the attacks of the rest of the group. Nobody was confident in being able to seize it, then survive an array of attacks from this huge group of Seven Star Fiends.
Right at this moment…
A black-robed, loose-haired man slowly flew out from the mountain forest. His eyes were filled with amusement, and he casually glanced at the group of people surrounding him. “Haha…unexpected, truly unexpected. I, Brodie, was actually able to cause so many experts to join forces in pursuing me. Such an honor this is! Even if I, Brodie, were to die, it would be worth it.”
This person was Brodie. Surrounded by multiple layers of people, he no longer ran and revealed himself instead.
“Swoosh!” Just as Brodie spoke out, a green figure suddenly flew towards him, clearly wanting to seize the initiative.
“Hmph!” A cold snort rang out.
“Rumble…” A fiery red blade shadow rose from the heavens, shattering through space and instantly chopping down upon that green figure’s body. A blurry light suddenly flashed in the green figure’s eyes, and he managed to resist the power of this terrifying attack. Still, he was knocked flying away.
Instantly, all of the other foolish, impulsive people retrained themselves, not daring to attack.
At this moment…
The loose-haired Brodie stood there in the air above the mountain forest, surrounded by a large number of supreme experts. Brodie, however, didn’t seem to know that he had reached the end of the line. He actually smiled as he looked at them, then said in a clear voice, “Everyone, tell me, with so many of you here, who should I actually give the diamond to?”
The many Seven Star Fiends and Six Star Fiends all looked at each other, not making any sound.
“That’s the easiest question ever.” A clear voice rang out. “Just give it directly to my Boss.”
A large sphere of earthen yellow light suddenly appeared in midair. The earthen yellow aura dissipated, revealing seven people. It was Chegwin and his two subordinates, along with Linley, Bebe, and the two tribesmen they had brought with them.
“What incredible speed.” Chegwin’s two subordinates were stunned.
“Lord Chegwin.” Upon seeing Chegwin, quite a few of the Six and Seven Star Fiends called out in surprise. They were all stunned. After all, compared to Linley, Chegwin had been famous for far long, for countless years. Even amongst ‘commanders’, he was a supreme expert ranked close to the top. Chegwin’s information had been public for a long time now.
But Linley had only participated in a single Planar War very recently. News about him had yet to truly spread.
Although there were a group of Six Star Fiends and Seven Star Fiends here, while Chegwin was in alone, in truth, he could still fight them all. Because he had two Sovereign artifacts!
“It looks like we have no hope.” The big-bearded dwarf said with a snicker.
“No hope at all.” A callous, silver-haired youth gave a sidelong glance at the distant Chegwin as well.
Chegwin was able to fight against everyone here. Even if they all fought over the red caltrop diamond, Chegwin would be able to seize it. In addition, these Six Star Fiends and Seven Star Fiends were no fools. All of them knew that if one had to compare the value of their lives with the value of a treasure, their lives were still more important!
“You…you are Lord Linley?” Suddenly, a voice rang out.
Linley turned to look, only to see a Six Star Fiend staring at Linley in surprise.
“What, you recognize my Boss?” Bebe winked at this Six Star Fiend.
“Ah, Lord Linley. I just participated in the previous Planar War. I was fortunate enough to see Lord Linley and Lord Magnus battle. I didn’t imagine that you would come as well!” This Six Star Fiend was very excited. He then glanced at the surrounding people and said loudly, “Everyone, now that Lord Linley has come, there’s no point to fighting. This red caltrop diamond will go to Lord Linley.”
“He’s Lord Linley?”
Of the hundred-plus people present, there were two or three others who knew of Linley. Only, they didn’t know what he looked like or what his aura was like, and so they weren’t able to recognize him at a glance.
Chegwin smiled as well. “Everyone, the person by my side is the number one expert of the Four Divine Beasts clan, the Highgod Paragon, Lord Linley. Everyone, do you still want to fight over the red caltrop diamond?” Hearing these words, the other Six and Seven Star Fiends were simultaneously shocked and began to repeat the same words.
That was an invincible individual who was able to execute commander-level experts as easily as cutting grass. If he wanted the red caltrop diamond, who would be able to take it from him?
Linley couldn’t help but glance at Chegwin. Chegwin was actually speaking on his behalf?
“Lord Chegwin?” Brodie, hearing those surprised calls, had begun to understand that Chegwin was probably a supreme expert. But now, it seemed, that next to Chegwin was a legendary Highgod Paragon. “Linley?” Brodie gave Linley a close look.
“Brodie, hand over the red caltrop diamond and offer it to Lord Linley. His Lordship might spare your life. If you don’t hand it over…” Immediately, a Seven Star Fiend who stood far above him snapped out in a cold voice.
“Shut your mouth, punk!” Brodie raised his head and bellowed angrily.
“You…” The Seven Star Fiend was enraged.
“Hmph. I don’t give a damn if you are a Seven Star Fiend, a Lord Prefect, a Sovereign’s Emissary…and even if you are a Highgod Paragon, so what?” Brodie raised his head to stare at the surrounding area, then intentionally stared straight at Linley. “Let me tell you this. The red caltrop diamond is in my interspatial ring! If you want to seize it, then I will crush it!”
An interspatial ring was being held between Brodie’s fingers.
If he applied force to it, it would definitely shatter.
Linley felt anxious. “If Brodie really does go berserk and breaks the interspatial ring, although the red caltrop diamond inside it won’t be destroyed, it will be trapped into chaotic space. How will I then find it?”
“Brodie, don’t be too hotheaded. If you break it, you will definitely die.” Chegwin barked coldly.
“Do you think I don’t dare to?” Brodie stared straight back at Chegwin.
“Shut your mouth.” Linley gave Chegwin a cold glance, and all Chegwin could do to respond was to laugh awkwardly, then step back. In his heart, though, he felt extremely bitter. Linley, in turn, understood: “Chegwin isn’t able to acquire it for himself, so he probably actually wants Brodie to destroy it so that I won’t be able to acquire it either.”
“All of you, listen up.”
Brodie laughed smugly. He suddenly felt as though what he was doing right now, barking orders at a large group of Six Star Fiends, Seven Star Fiends, and a Paragon, was quite an impressive accomplishment. Paragons…what untouchably lofty figures were they! But today, he, Brodie, was able to put on airs in front of a Highgod Paragon!
“You’d best not piss me off. If you do, I’ll shatter this interspatial ring, and none of you will be able to acquire it.” Brodie snickered.
The Seven Star Fiends and Six Star Fiends didn’t dare to make a sound. They were afraid of angering Brodie into shattering the ring, thus causing Linley, who would be angry at having lost a chance to acquire the red caltrop diamond, to vent his rage upon them. That would be terrible.
Linley looked at Brodie, then laughed. “Brodie, speak. What do you want in exchange for giving me this red caltrop diamond?”
“Paragons really are Paragons. You are so straightforward.”
Brodie smiled. “Simple. First of all, you need to guarantee my survival, and that I’ll live to teleport through a transportation array and leave the Infernal Realm! Second, you need to give me tens of trillions of inkstones. I trust this sum isn’t anything for a Paragon like yourself. Third, you have to give me some Sovereign’s Might. I don’t need too much, just a few dozen drops. I need to stay alive as well. If you agree to my three conditions, I will give you this red caltrop diamond!” Brodie said it all in one breath. This was a price he felt was very, very high!
Instantly, deep breaths could be heard from everywhere.
Letting Brodie leave safely wasn’t an issue, but the next two requirements were too wild.
Tens of trillions of inkstones? Generally speaking, the total net worth of a Seven Star Fiend was just a trillion inkstones or so. As for Sovereign’s Might…ordinary Seven Star Fiends would dream of acquiring so much as a single drop! Yet this Brodie said he didn’t want too much, ‘just’ a few dozen! What a greedy demand this was!
“Fine. I agree.” Linley smiled and nodded, the look on his face unchanging.
Brodie was stunned.
He had made extravagant demands with the goal of making Linley bargain with him…but Linley had just straightforwardly agreed.
“Paragons are this wealthy?” Brodie mused to himself.