With a flash, Dyon's body disappeared from its position behind Femi and appeared Ri and Madeleine, a smile gracing his features. He didn't seem anything like the man he had been just a few moments ago. Instead he was caring, warm and even a bit worried.
It was at this point the crowd began to overlook Dyon's cheater label, to a certain extent. Whether he cheated or not, he had just made a very good case for why he should be in the top ten regardless. And, as they all knew, the top ten was a single tier unto its own. The disparity between ten and one wasn't so large as heaven and earth… Or so they thought.
Femi Geb's lip twitched. Unbeknownst to him, Dyon's words had him frozen in place for a split second too long. But, he quickly recovered. He didn't know what it was about Dyon that seemed to constantly suppress everyone around him, but what he did know was that he had no intentions of losing. And since this Dyon had insisted on provoking him, his allies would suffer too.
What Femi didn't know was that Dyon's suppressive abilities were because of his soul strength. Even elders much more powerful than Dyon always felt a constant pressure from him because a part of them would always be weaker than him.
Dyon didn't know it, but he was tapping on a door to something new. At Focus Academy, the very first confrontation he had ever had was with Akihiko's younger brother, Kami Mayumi. During that confrontation, Dyon directly damaged Mayumi with a single shout, suppressing his soul and injuring it. Because Dyon now had the habit of suppressing his own soul level, he hadn't used this ability since, even to the point of having forgotten about it entirely.
However, the larger problem with using this ability was the vulnerable position it placed Dyon in. The act of attacking with the soul, as Saeclum's passing would attest, was highly dangerous. The only reason Dyon was on the winning side was because he had been severely underestimated – no one had thought he had any cultivation to speak of at all.
Another problem that was probably just as important was the fact that an attacker had to either prepare for an extended period of time as Saeclum had, or, if you had enough talent – as Dyon did – to skip over the preparation time, you still needed a soul several levels higher to be successful. And even then, you would still be at a severe risk.
It was many confounding factors like this that often made creating soul type techniques completely impractical. This was why the movement toward more supplementary soul type techniques like manifestation and array alchemy were created. By using mediums like manifestation and the aurora, you had a shield to the direct damage of the soul.
Top flight manifestation could have a direct impact on the user's physical body or had a physical form of some sort. For example, Dyon's wings. These were a physical representation of his manifestation. This same logic was also true of his weapons.
Because of his soul strength was connected to wings, Dyon could reach speeds comparable to lower level saints should he choose to. That said, it put a ridiculous amount of strain on his soul considering that was his upper cap. At the same time, the rest of Dyon's body didn't make fighting at that speed viable. Why? Because even if he could flap his wings that hard, the rest of his manifestation didn't lend to attacking with speed suitable for that. At the same time, because he didn't have a saint level body, flying at that speed put a massive strain on him.
Another example of this was how the strength of his weapons directly correlated to his strength. Because he had a saint level soul, he could manifest grandmaster level weapons. However, this was yet another example of how the rest of Dyon's cultivation restricted his soul's full potential. After all, just having a grandmaster level weapon didn't mean you were as strong as a saint. Just like Dyon's transcendent sword didn't make him as powerful as a celestial level expert.
All of this to say, that unlike body and energy cultivation, soul cultivation always came rife with caveats, exceptions and limiters. And unfortunately for Dyon, he was by far the most talented in this aspect with both his body and energy cultivation being completely average. In fact, if Dyon's set of meridians hadn't come already tempered, who knew how many months to even years it would have taken him to reach the middle of the meridian formation stage? Never mind 108 open meridians.
In the end, this was why Dyon had suppressed his advancement to the essence gathering stage. He needed more of an understanding. And, if he couldn't get that, he needed to at least gain the most solid base possible. Unlike body cultivation, energy cultivation was highly sensitive to the most minute of changes.
That said, this was Dyon after all. Just how many possible solutions did he already have in mind already? How could he possibly be like everyone else in thinking that the soul was the most useless of the three disciplines?
Did body or energy cultivation directly increase your intelligence like the soul did? Did body or energy cultivation allow you to write the laws of the universe? Did body or energy cultivation allow you an understanding of the universe few could ever dream of reaching?
The answer was no. To every single question. So, how could the soul be useless?
Dyon's senior first brother had failed. His grand teacher had failed. His master had failed. In fact, every expert to ever live had failed.
So, considering how arrogant Dyon was, why wouldn't he think that this task was left unsolved for him to write in a solution?