Target: Anarchic Lands!
The gentle wind blew softly against Linley’s hair as he sat quietly in the meditative posture on the ground, his eyes shut. His soul had become one with the earth and one with the wind.
“Rumble…” Linley could sense the heat of the scorching hot magma in the depths of the earth.
“Swish…” Linley could sense the changes in the speed of the wind. In the upper atmosphere, the wind was very strong, but the wind within the imperial capital’s manors was much weaker. Linley could clearly sense all the changes of the wind.
Linley enjoyed the sensation of training. Each time he gained a new insight and each time he made a breakthrough, he felt his spirit be uplifted and be transformed!
This was a very emotional event which made his heart tremble each time.
“The War God’s words were perhaps accurate. It is good to focus one’s attention on a single path of training. The Laws of the Earth are vast and boundless, while the ‘Throbbing Pulse of the World’ should be a fairly deep, profound subset of those laws.” Linley could sense this.
Although he and Haydson both studied the Laws of the Earth, they had taken different routes.
His own vibrational attacks were clearly on a higher level than Haydson’s!
“Thruuum.” “Thruuuum.” The unique rhythm and tempo of the earth totally absorbed Linley’s attention. Linley once more allowed himself to be totally submerged into it as he worked hard to understand the profound secrets hidden within it.
Ever since that battle with Haydson, Linley had become publicly acknowledged as one of the most powerful experts people knew about in the Yulan continent. He was already someone who was spoken of as being on the level of Haydson, the Holy Emperor, and the Dark Patriarch. In the imperial capital of Channe, the status of the Baruch clan had become even more extraordinary as well.
Clearly, although he had become famous, no one dared to come disturb Linley any more.
“With each new insight, I have a different sensation.” Linley opened his eyes, a smile coming unbidden to his face. Linley sighed with amazement to himself, “Even the ‘Throbbing Pulse of the World’ contains such immeasurably deep and abstruse secrets. How vast and boundless are the Laws of the Earth, then?”
No wonder it was so hard to become a Deity.
And even an incredible person such as the War God remained at the Demigod level despite five thousand years having passed.
“Big bro!” Wharton and the Barker brothers ran over.
“I knew you were coming.” Linley laughed and stood up. When he had been in tune with the earth, Linley had sensed Wharton and the others walk over.
After everyone finished lunch.
“Zassler.” Linley rose to his feet and smiled as he gestured at Zassler. He brought Zassler into his own courtyard, and the two sat down facing each other.
“Lord Linley, is there something you need?” Zassler asked questioningly.
A complicated expression was on Linley’s face. He sighed, “Zassler, you know much about the affairs of my Baruch clan.” Zassler had been here at the estate for a long time now. Naturally, he had learned everything there was to know. Zassler immediately nodded.
Linley said calmly, “My parents are both dead now, and the primary culprit is the Radiant Church. In the past, when I left the city of Hess, I swore an oath that one day, I would eradicate the Radiant Church and pull it out by its roots.”
Zassler knew of this goal of Linley’s.
Linley looked at Zassler. “I know that right now, my power is increasing steadily. What’s more, with Bebe, Haeru, and the Barker brothers…I have confidence in my ability to deal with the Radiant Church. I am preparing to start acting against the Radiant Church!”
“You are starting?” Zassler was startled.
Linley was planning to openly act against the Radiant Church?
“Linley, although it is true that our power is now quite formidable, the roots of the Radiant Church are very deep as well…” Zassler hurriedly tried to dissuade him. Although he, too, wished to destroy the Radiant Church, they had to be wise about it.
Linley smiled and waved his hand. “No, I’m not going to fight them head on yet.”
“Last time, I heard you talking about the Anarchic Lands. Didn’t you say the Radiant Church highly values that area? And that there is a lot of power there?” Linley asked.
Zassler was over eight hundred years old, and he had spent many years living in the Anarchic Lands.
“Of course they value it!”
Zassler explained in detail, “Linley, based on my understanding of the Radiant Church, aside from sacrificing pure souls to the Radiant Sovereign, the Radiant Sovereign also needs sufficient worshippers! The more worshippers they have, the more faith is generated. The Radiant Church always prattles on about ‘spreading the Lord’s light across the entire world’, precisely because of this goal.”
Linley nodded slightly.
Zassler clicked his fingernails together. “Linley, in the entire continent, the most chaotic areas are the great plains of the far east, the Anarchic Lands, and the Eighteen Northern Duchies!”
“Of those places, the Eighteen Northern Duchies are engaged in constant warfare, while the steppe riders of the great plains are famous for their savagery. Bloodlust is bred into their very bones. How could they possibly worship the Radiant Sovereign? The very nature of the steppe warriors guarantees that the Radiant Church would not be able to succeed with them.” Zassler chatted slowly. “As for the Eighteen Northern Duchies, those Eighteen Northern Duchies already worship the Frost Goddess.”
“The Frost Goddess?” Linley actually didn’t know much about the Eighteen Northern Duchies.
“Right.” Zassler nodded. “Although the Eighteen Northern Duchies engage in constant battle amongst themselves, the Frost Goddess Shrine holds absolute dominion amongst them. And the secrets of the Frost Goddess Shrine are immeasurably deep…and what’s more, the Frost Goddess Shrine isn’t ambitious, and has remained within the Eighteen Northern Duchies this entire time. Naturally, the Radiant Church wouldn’t go and provoke them and create a powerful foe.”
Linley had always wondered about this. The Eighteen Northern Duchies were located to the north of the Forest of Darkness. The only nation it bordered was the O’Brien Empire, and the area it covered was roughly that of an Administrative Province. Given the power of the O’Brien Empire, taming it shouldn’t be hard.
But why hadn’t they?
Only now did Linley understand that this had to do with the Frost Goddess Shrine.
“Since these two places are out of the question, the only place left is the Anarchic Lands!” Zassler sighed. “The Anarchic Lands are extremely chaotic. Terrifyingly chaotic.”
“Chaotic? How so?”
Zassler sighed emotionally. “First of all, in the past, according to calculations, there were 48 Duchies. But the boundaries in the Anarchic Lands constantly shift. Every few years, the number of Duchies will change. Perhaps there would be fifty, or perhaps there would be forty. It is hard to say. This is the first reason why it is chaotic.”
“The second reason why it is chaotic is because of their borders. They are located next to the O’Brien Empire, the Rohault Empire, and the clans of the great plains in the far east. All three of these powers have designs upon them!”
“The third reason they are chaotic is because both the Radiant Church and the Cult of Shadows have desired to hold sway over the Anarchic Lands. In these lands, both of these religions are very powerful and have great influence. The two religions are diametrically opposed, and the struggles between them persist unabated.”
Listening to this, Linley couldn’t help but sigh. If, given all of these conditions, the Anarchic Lands wasn’t in a state of chaos, it wouldn’t make any sense at all.
“There is a fourth reason why they are chaotic!” Zassler sighed with feeling. “To the north of the Anarchic Lands is the vast Forest of Darkness. The Forest of Darkness contains a multitude of magical beasts, with the total number being not much less than the Mountain Range of Magical Beasts. Every few decades, or perhaps every decade, there will be a wave of magical beasts…countless magical beasts will come from the Forest of Darkness and charge towards the Anarchic Lands. This is no ordinary disaster!”
Linley’s face changed.
An explosive surge of magical beasts?
After having experienced the Apocalypse Day of the Holy Union, Linley knew exactly how terrifying a large wave of magical beasts could be. That definitely was a day of doom.
“Of course, although it is described as a wave of magical beasts, it can’t compete with the ‘Apocalypse Day’ in terms of how terrifying that day was.” Zassler laughed. “Most of the magical beasts which come from the Forest of Darkness are middle-rank or low-rank beasts. Only very few are high ranked magical beasts. And although they are numerous, at those times, all of the Duchies in the Anarchic Lands will work together and be able to wipe out all of the magical beasts.”
Linley now understood.
If there were few high ranking magical beasts, the damage that these waves could cause would be much lower. In addition, the numbers weren’t as large as when the Holy Union had been invaded. Naturally, the amount of damage which could be caused would be limited.
“Linley, but the difference between this and what happened in the Holy Union is that the wave of magical beasts coming from the Forest of Darkness doesn’t just happen once. It happens every decade or every few decades, and as a result, the Anarchic Lands can never be truly at peace.” Zassler sighed.
Linley secretly sighed as well.
Due to these four reasons, the Anarchic Lands would indeed be forever chaotic.
“Although the Duchies are small, all 48 Duchies combined make up a large amount of territory. The Anarchic Lands definitely rival roughly half of the O’Brien Empire in scope. In fact, the size of the area which the Anarchic Lands covers is roughly the same size as the current Holy Union.”
Linley nodded as well.
After the Apocalypse Day, the Holy Union only had two thirds of the territory it previously held. And of course, the O’Brien Empire was a territorially vast Empire to begin with.
It made sense that the Anarchic Lands, being half the size of the O’Brien Empire, was roughly the same size as the current Holy Union.
“Such a vast territory naturally attracts the interest of the Radiant Church. The Radiant Church and the Cult of Shadows both have many experts there, and their roots are deep.”
Hearing this, Linley laughed.
How many people would the Radiant Church send to a territory which was roughly equal in size to the entire Holy Union?
“If the Radiant Church has twenty or thirty Saints, they would at least have to send five, six, or seven Saints over there.” Linley said to himself.
The Sacred Isle was definitely the place where most of the Radiant Church’s experts would cluster.
The Saints sent to the Anarchic Lands most likely should not be the most powerful experts the Radiant Church had.
“After my little brother’s wedding, we’ll head to the Anarchic Lands.” Linley looked at Zassler, smiling. “Let our war against the Radiant Church commence in the Anarchic Lands.”
Destroying the roots which the Radiant Church had painstakingly cultivated over thousands of years in the Anarchic Lands would definitely enrage the Radiant Church to the point of insanity.
“The Anarchic Lands?” Zassler’s eyes lit up. “Excellent!”
Linley smiled. Destroying the influence which the Radiant Church had built up there over thousands of years definitely wasn’t something that would be accomplished in a year or two.
“I’ll spend part of my time training while spending the rest of my time dealing with them. After destroying their forces in the Anarchic Lands, I should have reached the Saint-level in my human form. By then, my understanding of the ‘Throbbing Pulse of the World’ should be very high as well. At that time…we can directly engage in battle against the Radiant Church.”
Linley had a very clear series of plans in his mind.
They would act in accordance with these plans. They wouldn’t be impatient or rash. One step at a time, they would rip out the roots of the Radiant Church.
Wharton had previously said that his mind would be too unsettled to be able to have his wedding with Nina before Linley’s duel with Haydson. They had now set the date of the wedding: September 15th.
It was now the beginning of September. Both the Count’s estate as well as the imperial clan were busy making preparations for this grand wedding.
The wedding banquet was far more important than the engagement banquet.
Count Wharton’s estate. Linley’s residence.
“Linley, our ship and our crew are planning to return to the Yulan Empire. I need to go back with my teacher.” Delia looked at Linley, her lips curving downwards as she spoke. Linley had previously been smiling, but suddenly, his smile froze.
Knowing that Delia was about to leave, Linley couldn’t help but feel a bit heartsick.
The past few months he had spent with Delia had been the most relaxed period in the past ten years of Linley’s life. Every day, he was filled with smiles.
“You are leaving?” Linley forced out a smile. “Then let me wish you a safe journey.”
Delia actually smiled. She could tell that Linley was unwilling to part with her. “However…I told my teacher that he can go back first, and that I would stay here as a private citizen.”
“Ah?!” Linley didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry.
“Are you unhappy?” Delia frowned.
“Happy, happy!” Linley hurriedly said, but then he looked solemnly at Delia. “Delia, there’s something I need to tell you.”
“What?” Delia looked expectantly at Linley.
“After my younger brother’s grand wedding, I will most likely need to go to the Anarchic Lands.” Linley said.
“Oh. Then I will go as well.” Delia didn’t hesitate in the slightest.
But just at this moment, a series of excited shouts could be heard, while a human figure rushed at high speed to Linley’s residence. From outside the door, Gates’ loud voice could be heard shouting, “Lord, my fourth brother has also broken through and reached the ninth rank!”
Of the five Barker brothers, four now had the power of Saints.
“Yet another Saint?” A smile couldn’t help but appear on Linley’s face. These five brothers were indeed capable of easily bringing people wonderful surprises.