Chapter 448: Nightmare Realm Defender, Not Letting Even One Person Pass (1)
Chu Mu's heart didn't calm down for a long time as many new questions floated into his mind.
Though Chu Mu didn't know why the defected girl wanted to try so hard to enter the human world or where she came from, Chu Mu felt that she had some other goal in mind. She completely didn't need to run into the center of a faction struggle and mastermind it behind the scenes.
In the fight between factions, those involved are usually those with great power. They do it to get higher positions and power, and they rack their brains to try to find ways to gain more through devious schemes.
Yet the defected girl was in itself a humanoid soul pet. She shouldn't fall under the category. However, Palace Master Yu's words suggested that she was the one inciting conflict between Elemental Sect and Soul Palace.
What else did Hao Ting do?" Chu Mu immediately asked.
He really wanted to know what type or actions someone controlled by the defected soul pet did. Only through these actions can he discern what the defected girl really wanted.
"During the Battle of the Realm at the time, to get what he wanted, he did a lot of mind-boggling things in the dark. It was when I found out about these that I realized his character changed.
In reality in these years, his attention had solely been on Battle of the Realm. He spent large fortunes to buy experts from all different factions just in hopes of truly capturing the result of the Battle of the Realm.
"Battle of the Realm clues have come back." Ye Qingzi said quietly.
"Then what else did Palace Master Yu discover, for example between the two Battle of the Realms?" Chu Mu continued to ask.
"He was very discreet. There aren't any clear clues right now, but there is one thing for sure: he wants to get the final honor of Battle of the Realm, either second tier or first tier." Palace Master Yu said.
"What are the respective rewards for the final honors?" Chu Mu asked.
Palace Master Yu shook his head and his eyes fell on old soul teacher De.
Old soul teacher De's reputation was well known in soul pet world. He was also one of the main judges of the battle, so he definitely knew about the rewards for the final honor of each tier.
Old soul teacher De stared back at them, acting as if he were simply an observer. Realizing that everyone was staring at him, he coughed and said, "I have to keep it a secret, its a matter of principles."
"Old soul teacher De, after my years of tracking, I found that Hao Ting indeed is doing many things in the dark. My abilities are limited, so I could only see the tip of the iceberg. Now, I feel that he may have some actions in this Battle of the Realm. If we can't stop it, it could cause immense impact, not only on the young generation; our soul palace, along with other factions, will all be affected. Hao Ting's influence has long since reached into every large faction……"
"Old soul teacher De, we still hope you can tell us." Chu Mu said genuinely.
Old soul teacher De's two patches of mustache could always give away his true emotions. After hesitating for a bit, Old soul teacher De said, "Second tier, a soul pet egg, high class monarch rank, and a flask of limited edition soul liquid that can increase any type soul pet's fighting strength based on their strength. FIrst tier, emperor rank young soul pet. That's it."
"Old soul teacher De, everyone knows these." Chu Mu said.
"I also only know this. Do you want me to go and crack open the soul pet egg to see what it is? Also, the emperor rank young soul pet hasn't even been decided yet, so how would I know exact details." Old soul teacher De replied.
Chu Mu looked at Ye Qingzi and used his soul remembrance to tell Old soul teacher De, "Is it that soul liquid? Is there any special meaning about the flask of soul liquid?"
"The effects Old soul teacher De already went over. The contents of the will is something no one else knows. Can it be that your defected soul pet also wants to get my teacher's will? Hao Ting is someone I know; My brother and I have always suspected that he was the one that set up a trap for teacher……" Ye Qingzi replied.
"Then is it that he wants to get your teacher's will that caused her to constantly look for you and your brother?" Chu Mu continued to question.
"It's possible, but I think that the main reason he wants to find us is so we can concoct soul liquid that can quickly recover soul power." Ye Qingzi said.
Palace Master Yu fell into deep thought. After a long while, he said, "Seems like figuring out what Hao Ting wants to do is impossible. The only plan right now is to get the final honors of first and second tier. Maybe with the progression of the Battle of the Realm, his plot will slowly be revealed. Then, we can find a better countermeasure."
All the clues cut off here, so Chu Mu knew that there wasn't much purpose in looking for more. Then, the current mission is to constantly beat realms and eventually meet people like Shen Yichen in the last few realms before they could find a better plan.
"Chu Chen, getting the second tier final honor is incredibly difficult. The true experts of each faction haven't even been revealed yet. Stay vigilant in your following realms. Of course, the most important thing is to get through the next few realms. Only then can we find more clues as to what they are about to do. In first tier, I will find Teng Lang and tell him to stay aware for me." Palace Master Yu said.
The Teng Lang that Palace Master Yu mentioned is someone Chu Mu vaguely remembered. It was the third young master he met in the soul palace hall, where Chu Mu replied to a servant girl's call in his place.
Teng Lang gave off a feeling of a clean and sophisticated scholar, but from his direct language, one could tell that he was also decisive and outspoken.
"In second tier, I will tell Fang Ze to try his best to win the final honor. Taking the initiative is always better." Palace Master Yu continued.
Fang Ze was the eighth young master. Chu Mu hadn't seen him before, but he heard of him from Ting Lan and Shang Heng. Chu Mu secretly guessed whether the man he saw not long ago was eighth young master Fang Ze.
"I want the final honor of second tier." Chu Mu said very straightforwardly to Palace Master Yu.
Palace Master Yu blanked, and then responded, "Chu Young master is still young. Let Fang Ze handle something like this. He is often in Tianxia City and knows the struggle between factions better too. He is also far stronger than Shen Yichen. Chu Young master might not be his match."
Palace Master Yu admitted that Chu Mu was a very outstanding expert, especially since he could tell Chu Mu had hidden strength now that Chu Mu successfully finished the realm challenge in Holy Stem Sacred Region.
Except, Palace Master Yu knew way more than Chu Mu. The first few realms' rankings aren't really indicative of anything. By the fourth realm, faction experts will slowly appear. By th seventh realm, those people who were on the realm rankings may be completely gone.
Yu Palace Master has a lot of experience. He knew that the waters in Tianxia City were incredibly deep. 
"No matter what, I will get it." Chu Mu didn't explain further.
No matter his own goals, or for Ye Qingzi's teacher' will, or for the secrets of the defected girl, Chu Mu will strive for the second tier final honor!
Once Chu Mu had a definitive direction to go, he would naturally march forwards without hesitation.
Understanding that the defected girl's goal is also on Battle of the Realm, Chu Mu had even less reason to back off. He didn't waste time on small clues here and there and started to prepare the soul item for Devil Tree Battle Soldier to increase its strength significantly.
The first tier reward gave Chu Mu one trillion gold in reward. Adding on the previous amounts, he could use the Curved Spirit Root to increase Devil Tree Battle Soldier from low class to middle class monarch rank. Adding on Chu Mu spending a trillion, he could raise Devil Tree Battle Soldier's rank to ninth phase. A ninth phase middle class monarch rank devil tree battle soldier would then be born!
The process wasn't too complicated. After Devil Tree Battle Soldier's rank raised twice, it clearly learned a new technique, causing it to become very excited.
The blood natural wood energy crystal didn't change much, but one could still tell it was slowly moving towards a higher rank wood type crystal. Presumably, once it jumps to high class monarch rank, Devil Tree Battle Soldier's energy crystal will become the next state too.
After the second realm finished, it was time for the third realm. This realm was called challenge. Chu Mu challenged a Nightmare Palace expert, obviously choosing a difficulty that could gain him the highest honor.
This fight, Chu Mu didn't take out all his strength, staying with the Ghost King, Ice Air Fairy, and Zhan Ye to fight.
This time, Chu Mu didn't get the highest honor as he hoped, getting 57th place and gaining about a trillion again.
After the third realm was the fourth.
From leaked news, every three realms in Battle of the Realm was usually a jump in difficulty that would cut off many people.
In reality, the first three realms didn't have a high elimination rate. However, by the fourth realm, people would start to realize just how steep and dangerous the road was!
In realm four, simply the mission announcement was enough to cause everyone to start complaining and get annoyed. From everyone's expressions one could tell that, before fourth realm even started, a large amount of people were destined to be eliminated.
Chu Mu's realm mission was somewhat surprising, but also expected!
That is because the fourth realm is something Ting Lan had mentioned - Realm Defender!!!
 [1. TL: Basically saying there is a lot to the metaphorical iceberg under the water]