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Dyon's body lay completely unconscious, a single arm hanging limply from the side of a crater so deep that the bottom was impossible to make out. It was a miracle that he hadn't fallen in. With a depth so astronomical, if he wasn't conscious to fly out, his body would be turned to paste.

Unfortunately, Dyon's last attack had taken everything he had left. To seal things within the soul tome was easy as long as they were lifeless. However, to manifest them back into their true form took power Dyon simply hadn't had.

From the very beginning, Dyon knew that the death qi he had sealed within the soul tome would be his final trump card. In a situation like this, where others saw despair, he had tossed all thoughts of loss out of his mind and only focused on paths to victory. However, Dyon also knew that an attack that didn't land would be useless. Because the death qi within the soul tome wouldn't have any momentum of its own, for experts on Elder Daiyu and Loki's level, dodging it would have been a simple matter. Even worse, after killing Elder Daiyu, Dyon knew he simply didn't have the soul strength left to bring the death qi out…

This was why he had dragged himself over to Elder Daiyu's corpse, to pull away the last sliver of soul strength that lingered on within him. It had crossed his mind to take the soul strength from Loki, but with him fighting, and Dyon currently being so weak, it would have been a fool's errand.

Because Dyon knew manifesting the death qi would have taken the last of his strength, even after absorbing Elder Daiyu's soul, he had chosen to attempt to heal his body first, hoping that he would have enough in him to complete both tasks. But, unfortunately, he had underestimated the strength needed to use the ancient Elvin techniques… Quite simply put, Dyon had been spoiled by his overwhelming soul talent. It was difficult for him to put in perspective just the level of strain normal individuals would be under until he, himself, was in dire straits.

In the end, Dyon had no choice. With the last of his soul strength dissipating, he had to forcefully push past his limits… The consequences of such a thing were untold and likely more severe than usual considering his burning soul.

Now, Dyon had completely collapsed. His body lay naked – as it had been since Loki's endless torture – with the only interruption in dense black and charred skinned being the cracked of red and dried blood that covered him. His soul was dormant, a faint whisper of gold with only endless darkness as its protection. And his meridians… damaged beyond belief and dry, not even the smallest drop of energy remaining…

However, in that instant, just as the faint embers of Dyon's soul were about to give out, the cracking of a barrier resounded through the now quiet Belmont inner world.

Essence energy rushed forward, greedily vying for its place.

The world trembled, almost unable to maintain itself under the shift in energy. The artificial skies shook violently, sending furious earth quakes throughout the Belmont Holy Land.

Dyon knew from the very beginning, that the amount of meridians you filled with energy during a break through often dictated your potential. Under normal circumstances, Dyon would likely not fill even a single one. His energy cultivation talent was simply too poor – he didn't deserve the universe's blessings. But, this time was different.

A faint and densely black aura emanated from the black wrist band that clung to Dyon's dangling arm. Its eerie and domineering presence completely overshadowing the deep abyss it hung above.

The moment that Dyon had first felt a real connection to the Dragon King, was the moment his senses were opened up in a way he couldn't fathom. All this time he had fumbled his way through dealing with the energies of the universe, completely unable to make full use of them. This had even affected the speed of the soul cultivation. After all, after sheering your soul apart, it was these energies you must rely on to grow your soul even stronger! If it wasn't for Dyon's overwhelming instincts when it came to soul related matters, who knows if he would have ever made any progress!

But now… The Dragon King's devastating talent had become Dyon's. The energies of the universe were irresistibly attracting to Dyon's unconscious body, constantly stimulating and extending what seemed to be his last breaths.

That said, the problem still remained…

Even as Dyon's first meridian filled to the brim, overflowing with endless energy before pooling into the second… Dyon's soul benefitted in no way… If anything, the endless abyss that surrounded it got larger, threatening to snuff out the weakly flicker light.

Dyon's third meridian filled, pulsing and nearly bursting before the energy spilt over into the fourth… then fifth… then sixth…

At this point, it could be said that Dyon was destined to become a first-grade essence gathering expert. With the scant energy in this universe, even filled two meridians would name you an unmatched genius. After all, in order to accomplish this feat, you were essentially beaconing the energy of the universe toward you – something that was much harder, the less of it there was. The process of a break through was a time where the universe would cultivate for you! Why would the universe waste its time on useless talents?

Seventh meridian…

Dyon's soul continued to flicker, raging onward with an arrogance only found in its owner, but quickly losing the ability to maintain its consciousness.

Eighth meridian…

Dyon had now reached legendary status… It was a well known fact that no matter how much the universe loved a talent, it would only ever cultivate to the peak of first stage for them. However, the rarity of such a thing could hardly be put into words! This was much more common in ancient times, when the energy of the universe was abundant and the restrictions were looser. But, for it to happen now?... Even among the trillions birthed through the universes, less than a few thousand could boast such a thing…

Ninth meridian!

Dyon's energy cultivation sky rocketed to the peak of the first stage in a single leap. The universe groaned in agitation, wanting to help Dyon more, but its own laws seemed to reprimand it, giving it no choice but to recede, almost bowing down in apology.

Dyon had stepped into the world of essence gathering experts.

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Awespec

  • Canada
  • Awespec

Bio: Med school student who loves to write :)

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