As he overlook the former elder of his family, who was now a perfect ruby red sculpture that depicted infinite pain and suffering, a mind-boggling fear crept into his soul, into his very foundations. Lily was right. The elder had became an example. The message was crystal clear. If anything were to happen to Cesar, her revenge will be malignant and vengeful.
The patriarch looked around the room. A few of his family elders were unconscious, and some that looked like they had seen hell. Thoughts whizzed in his mind. He had to make sure what they had seen today never got out. What everyone in the room had seen had to be contained in the depths of their minds, never to surface. What they experienced had to be etched into their very souls.
The Flame family elders were lucky, the patriarch realized. They had seen true power and terror, and lived through it. The elders in his family didn't go out to hunt or go anywhere dangerous. It had made them soft and naive. Now that they had faced a dangerous situation, and survived. Right now, only a few of his family and General Calix knew what just happened. If the information were to spread, that Lily is one of the strongest Cultivators in the village, and she had two unique and amazing Cultivation methods, it would the end of his family.
He knew the consequences of spreading critical information. If people were to go after Lily because of her Cultivation techniques, her wraith and revenge would be pointed at his Flame family. Just the thought made his entire body shiver and want to commit suicide. His family, and elders, he could control through soul binding contracts. He would even put himself in a soul contract that didn't have loopholes. He didn't even worry about General Calix. He thanked the General in his heart. It was because of him that his family got off easily, with only a death of an elder.
He cursed his bad luck. Lily had been in Floating Cloud Village for years, along with Cesar. No one had noticed the priceless treasure within their fingertips. If anyone had reached out and took in the duo, sheltered them, given them a home, the family would have been set for many generations. The pair had an unbreakable sense of protection. With the pairs rise in power, which was enviable, the family would have risen to glorious heights, one that went beyond this mere village. Lily and Cesar would not have abandoned the family that took them in, no, they would have carried the entire family with them, on their shoulders, to unimaginable power, prestige, and honour.
Currently, the patriarch mostly valued Lily. She currently had strength. She was the stronger of the pair. Only Lily knew that Cesars potential completely eclipsed hers.
The patriarch realized that everyone had missed out on it. Currently, only General Calix would reap in the rewards.
In his mind however, there was a more urgent thought. He no longer viewed Lily as human. Her temperament, aura, and power were not at a human level. It was not a level he had ever seen before. She was a powerful Desolate Beast, in human skin. He had to make sure to never anger her.
When Cesar had slipped into the darkness from the beating that the Flame family elder gave him, surprisingly, he found himself floating in nothingness. True nothingness. A lifeless, soulless void where he couldn't tell whether he was staring into an infinite vast expanse of space or whether he was inside a black-hole. Had his new life been a dream? Had the Void Fusion Energy Reactor had actually gone off and it had created a black-hole? Did he wake up from his dream to see the final moments of his life? There was no sound waves to hear inside this space, no atoms of wind, mass or photons of light, no pressure of gravity, and he wasn't sure if he was dead and this was in some kind of limbo. He had no idea where he was. But he knew he was alive. 'I think', which Cesar was doing a lot of, 'therefore I am'. He existed but that didn't make him any less confused.
Confirming his existence was a useless piece of confirmation for Cesar at that moment.
Than he heard a voice. It cleared all his confusion and make his entire being feel completely at ease. [Cesar... Sweetheart. Welcome to my home, which is inside you. We are inside your soul, a small part of it anyways. But technically, I'm always inside you. Just think about that for a second.] Jasmine said with a soft, solemn voice that ended in playful giggles that chimed and seemed to come from every direction.
Ignoring her sex joke, Cesar looked around. His soul? It was just an empty void? A place of nothing? No mass, no energy, no substance. Souls were always thought and meant to be intangible. They existed outside of physical reality, or thought to be anyways. Seems like those people were wrong. The soul was at-least connected to the physical world. He thought his soul would be more than this... He thought at-least it would contain something. His soul was suppose to be his foundations, his core, the manifestation of his life. He was glad that this was just a small part of it.
He turned around to see a sight he thought he would never see. In his soul, was a women. No... A goddess. Her radiant rainbow coloured eyes flared with infinite intelligence, love and warmth of all creation. The curved corners of her eyes contained a childish, innocent mischievousness. But hidden deep in her eyes, was concern, pain and struggle. Even thought her hair was the same pigment as the jet black void all around her, he was able to perfectly see the shape of her hair, somehow distinguishable from the same coloured background.
The goddess had smooth, exotic, olive oil skin. She had a peach pink coloured suit that seemed so form fitting, hugged her body so tightly, that it seemed to be either made of body paint or an atom thin sheet of clothe that's impossible to create in the physical world. With the clipboard and glasses, the goddess looked like the perfect, angelic secretary.
With the mischievous smile on her face however, Cesar knew that it was Jasmine.
Continuing with her playful voice, Jasmine said [Just the image I gave myself. Glad to know you like it. I already know I'm perfect. But I don't mind if you keep telling me.] Jasmine said playfully.
[Usually this place is a lot more colourful. Plenty of data and information flows through this place. Because you are here, that I'm directing all the information to me, and not any to you or letting you see any of it. It's just a lot of pain, I'm sure you don't miss it. I'm actually surprised that I could bring you here. Must be because you're close to death.]
Just as I thought of the seriousness of the information she gave me, I felt information flood my mind. Flashes of memories. I saw Jasmines perspective since I arrived in this world a few days ago. How scared she was discovering that we were in a new world, where she could nothing, totally without energy or power. How she cried her heart out when she felt pain for the first time in her life. How she felt love when Lily cared for me. How she shivered with excitement when I killed my first Ferocious Beast.
It was all information that Jasmine kept from me. It was her perspective on my life since we came here. It was the emotional side of her that I had never seen before.
[Cesar... I feel everything you feel. We are directly linked. But you don't feel what I feel, what I go through, what I think. I block it out from you. But when you are hurt, when you feel pain, I feel the same. When you make a stupid decision, I laugh. Remember, I'm just another person in your mind, just a highly advanced one. It's the first time in my life that I felt pain you know, true pain. Let that information settle my love... When it does, we can get to business.]
Looking into her deep eyes and her loving smile, I let that information settle. My suffering, was her suffering. My pain, was her pain. My life, was her life. But it also meant that my happiness would affect her. She would directly feel my love for her. The conflicting thought created positive and negative emotions. Right now, I knew she was feeling an absurd amount of pain. I felt sad and conflicted.
Before I could apologize, Jasmine promptly said [Don't. I would do anything for you. Trust me, a little pain is nothing. But I still don't like pain, not this type anyways. Right now, you are being beaten to an inch of your life... I feel everything that ass-hole is doing to you. If he continues, you could die. But most likely, 97% likely, he will let you live. He will not kill you Cesar. But you have to learn from this experience.]
That fucking, bald headed elder. I swear... If I live, I wil-
[Calm down. That will come later. You have to know when you suffer defeat, you should rethink your plans. Only from defeat can you grow stronger. That's not true but it makes sense in this situation. Right now, you need to realize something. Cesar...You have me. The perfect secretary. The perfect girl that can just about do anything, or tell you how. Just tell me to do something, and I will or find out how I can. Want to enter the Xiantian Profound Realm in a few weeks? I'll tell you how. That's really easy. Want to control the universe? It will take time, but I tell you how.]
[Right now, my importance to you should be equal to your life. Take my words more seriously, and act upon them. I don't have access to my memory bank or computing power, so my current value isn't much. But each time I tell you something, know that I calculated the risk and gain involved, along with your best interest in mind. Surviving and gaining strength. Survival comes through adaption and caution. You've been adapting well. I'm actually surprised. I thought your views from Earth would hinder you. I'm glad you accepted this reality as quickly as you did. The virtual gaming experience has helped you quite a bit. I'm glad you understand that this is not a game. So props to you for taking what's useful and discarding the rest. But Cesar... You have not been cautious. You are a newborn baby in this world, so stick with your guardian until you can protect yourself.]
I listened and internalized. She was right. Right now, I'm not in a position to enjoy my new life. I'm a newborn predator born in the wilderness. I am small, frail, and prey to anything that wants to eat me. Only the strong, the apex predators enjoy life. The rest struggle, hoping to live another day.
[Cesar... I didn't want to get involved in dictating your life, making decisions for you, and living your life for you. You should be living your own life. One filled with trail and error. One where you are not taking the best path towards your goal.]
[To be honest however, you don't that luxury right now. You've noticed...But if you make a mistake, it could be the end of your life. Only when you have the power, do your decisions and errors don't result in dire consequences like death, and even that's not a guarantee.]
I wondered why Jasmine was playing out this charade. It didn't make sense. I've never stopped her from speaking to me. And I've always listened to her advice, I know how valuable it is. She had not warned me against challenging the households. She could have told me that I should be beside Lily at all times. Did she want me to almost die? Just so she could tell me that I have to listen to her? I would have regardless. It didn't make sense. I knew there was more going on, so I just listened.
[So, from now on, I will beam information right into your brain. I will not ask, and it will be instant. I expect you to follow it. I made a mistake of taking a back seat in what you do. Each moment, could be our last.]
'Each moment, could be our last'? Our death? Was she afraid of death? Was all this just a way to get rid of some stress and worry that's been built up? It made sense. We have a new chance at life, and she wants to make sure we don't die young. Or does she think that she's taking away my free will by telling me what I can and cannot do?
[Cesar... I'll tell you how to ensure your survival, one that has the highest chance of success. Stick with Lily like a baby shark. Never leave her sight, ever. Make her carry you to every Dan you see around the forest. Absorb that Dan. Have her kill Elite Ferocious Beasts and absorb the Essence. Drink their blood and eat the meat of the Elite Ferocious Beasts. If you have trouble locating Elite Ferocious Beasts, they should be guarding the more radiant Dan you see around the forest. You'll enter the Xiantian Realm in two weeks if you follow my plan. Don't worry about nonsense like honing instincts through battle or fighting experience. I'll solve that dilemma. I'll just take your every fight and simulate it as many times in your mind as you want. I'll take the extra energy to expand your senses and permanently slow down your perception of time. I'll even create an extra stream of consciousness in your mind to handle the extra information that you'll get from your senses. Extra streams of consciousness are overpowered Cesar, trust me. I'll also connect you directly with your subconscious.]
I had major cognitive dissonance going on in my mind when I heard her. She was telling me to be incredibly selfish. I didn't agree with taking up Lilys free time. She also needed to get stronger and advance her Cultivation. But than I really thought about it. Our current environment isn't suited for Lily. She's just too strong for the environment we are in. The village has little for her. It doesn't have information, techniques, or resources she wants. The forest around the village only contains normal and some Elite Ferocious Beasts. They do very little for Lily, if anything at all. The only reason she hunts them is because I can make 100% pure Relics for her. We even sell all the corpses, not using anything for ourselves. We are currently doing more for the village than it's doing for us. The Desolate Wilderness however, is a place where Lily would thrive. It was a place where she could grow her Cultivation. I imagine that the Exhibit in the capital isn't even going to be an obstacle for her, she might be looking forward to the inevitable military training that comes after the Exhibit.
The information and resources in the village are still useful to me. Elite Ferocious Beasts are still an obstacle for me.
These two months are currently a waste of time for Lily.
Than I thought about the capital. More to the point, going to the capital early. There, maybe we could get resources that could help Lily. The capital would also contain better armour, weapons and techniques for me. That means I also have motivation to get there early. But most importantly, there, Lily would thrive. King Ranked Ferocious Beasts should be more common around the capital. Because of Jasmines suggestions, I would have to stick with Lily regardless. It doesn't matter if it's the village or the capital. When I get to the Xiantian Realm, I will have the strength to actually take care of myself, and let Lily grow. Jasmines idea had merit. I would be taking a month of her time, not two.
The Houtian Profound Realm is separated into 5 categories. It's the Realm which changes a human into a Cultivator. The later three stages are the most important, because they change the body from a human into a Cultivator, getting the body ready for the Xiantian Profound Realm. The 3rd Houtian Profound Realm is the 'Bone Marrow Transformation' stage. All the energy inside the body is used to strengthen the skeletal structure. Cultivators exert tremendous amounts of force when they battle. The forces that act on their bodies are also tremendous. Humans bodies cannot deal with thousands of pounds of force being exerted onto their bodies, it would just result in death. It's the same with forces like strong g-force. The skeletal structure takes quite a lot damage from these forces, so strong bones are a must.
The 4th Houtian Profound Realm is the 'Blood Transformation' stage. Normally, the blood is like the cars on the highway. The blood transfers nutrients and energy throughout the body. It's also a secondary storage for energy. Heavenly Energy is gathered in the Dantian. Yin and Yang energy are carried in the blood. Like any storage system, there is a limit. In the 4th stage, that limit is increased, and it continues to increase throughout the persons Cultivation. Of-course, having higher quality blood has many more benefits like faster healing and a stronger immune system. Cars (blood) on the highway become sport cars (faster speed), trucks (higher storage), and multipurpose vehicles.
The 5th Houtian Profound Realm upgrades the veins in the human body. Taking the highway example, the veins are the roads that carry the blood around the body. The transformation of the veins can be described as taking a dirt road and turning it into a paved, stone road. This results in higher carrying capacity and less structural problems. Basically, this means that the veins are the foundation on which the blood travels throughout the body. The stronger the foundations, the better the result.
During the entire Houtian Porfound Realm, structural DNA in the human body changes. It makes the DNA more flexible, more adaptable. The amount of changes and upgrades for each person in the Houtian Profound Realm are different. This means that each person has a unique transformation period.
[When you enter the Xiantian Profound Realm, than do all the miscellaneous stuff like going to the library and learning alchemy. Get your priorities straight. Ensure your survival while gaining strength. You will pay Lily back in time, but right now, focus on yourself. She cares about your survival more than her own life anyways.]
Than I saw her fidget. She seemed hesitant to tell me her next words. “Go on Jasmine.” I said. I smiled because I thought she was acting cute.
With a difficult nod, Jasmine words were not anything resembling cute. [Dear... Somewhere in your mind, because you think because I no longer have limitations, you are unconsciously on guard against everything I do. Your mind, tries to stop and block my actions, even when I'm doing them for your own good. It's why I use so much energy, even when talking to you. I'm a part of your soul now, I should be able to talk to you whenever I want and share information. It's because a part of your brain won't let me connect with your conscious, thinking self, not without energy and effort. I gave you my emotional memories, so that small part of your brain knows that I will never cause you any harm. Please... Don't hate yourself because of your subconscious, you have no control over it, not yet.]
I almost started cursing myself. Even my own mind is working against me. Note to myself, she's Jasmine! Let her do whatever the hell she wants!
[Hehehe. Don't worry. With the emotional memories I gave you, that small part of your mind accepts me. Now... I have much more control over your body, at the fraction of the energy I used before.]
I smile. I didn't want Jasmine to be restricted. She's stuck in my soul, I have to make sure she's happy.
[Cesar... You coming here, in your soul, is an opportunity. I've built a pathway, so you can come back and forth. This place, your soul, is your domain. I'm just a resident. What you can do here is up to your imagination and will. The soul is the meeting place where the tangible and the intangible meet. Real, and illusory. You want some cloths? Just think of them, and they appear. Even though I like you naked. Get to know this place Cesar, because you are going to be spending quite a lot of time here. I've got work to do. It seems like that asshole of an elder is really planning on leaving you to an inch of your life. I hope I can keep you alive...]
And Jasmine was gone.
I tried to not think of what's happening to my real body. I tried to keep the anger and fury dormant and locked up in the back of my mind. I told myself to trust Jasmine. She already said that I had a 97% chance of living. Besides, I was in a place and situation where I could learn about the soul! A place where there was new knowledge and secrets! The darkness around me no longer looked so bad. It also made me calm down.
I was naked inside my soul. Figures. I'm sure Jasmine had a hand in that. So I thought about some simple cloths and they appeared on my skin, just like I had imagined. Their look and feel was identical compared to the real world.
Because my thoughts were focused on a certain, bald headed elder, he appeared before me inside my soul.
I had created an exact replica of the bald headed elder inside my soul. I had just created life.
This lead to more experimentation.
After an hour, I had tortured the Flame family elder at-least 5 times. I had fought him 10 times, and lost every single time. Each fight however, lasted longer than the previous one.
I could also create energy inside my soul. This lead to more experimentation and discovery.
In energy form, Yin and Yang energy combined into Life energy. But when these energies were fused in their physical forms however, it created an entirely different situation.
Yin and Yang energy were cold and hot. Positive and negative. In their physical forms, they rejected each other.
I don't mean they refused to combine. There did. There were stages to the fusion. It also seemed like the heavenly mirror also worked in my soul, which was why I was able to do the fusion.
At the moment of contact between the two physical form of energies, Yang appearing in sun like yellow, and Yin appearing in cold blue, wind and electricity/lightning were created. Wind was created around the two energies while electricity was created at their meeting point.
This is where the fun started and where I broke the laws of physics from my previous world. I could control both the wind and electricity. The heavenly mirror deemed mine and I could control them, plain and simple. They seemed to be a byproduct of the fusion, and not from the fusion itself. There is a difference, a major one.
The Yin and Yang energy under my control were completely closed systems. Jasmine had said that the mirror makes them so. Meaning there was no energy lost when electricity and wind was created. The wind and electricity were made from external energy, an outside source.
In theory, I could now create an infinite amount of electricity and wind which was under my control. That was until the external source had run out of energy.
For now, the external source was my soul. In the real world, it was 25 meters around me, or the entire universe.
But the fusion process continued. I gathered more and more wind and electricity. When the electricity and wind meet each other, fire was created. Wind acted like a cooling agent and electricity was turned into fire.
I now had fire, wind and electricity under my control. These three elements circled around me under my very whim. I felt like God.
Than I added more force in the fusion, more will. Under my control, with the help of the mirror, the fusion of the two physical energy forms were extremely stable. In the real world however, the fusion of these two physical energy forms are completely unstable and would refuse to mix.
It was the universe versus my will power and the heavenly mirror. I won.
The fusion of stability and instability occurred. Hot and cold. Positive and negative. Impossibility became reality.
The result was a transparent blue ball with red streams of energy trapped inside it. I could tell that this form was not meant to be part of reality because I knew that if I had a tiny slip in concentration, or just weakened my will power over it by a tiny amount, the entire system I had constructed would self-destruct, taking me with it. An description of what would happen if I left go of the control over this thing I had created was the opposite of combining matter and anti-matter. There would be annihilation, but in a different way. It wouldn't be the same because anti-matter and matter are perfectly matched with each other.
This was the opposite. This blue ball wanted to repel each and every part of itself. It was like a nuclear bomb. A nuclear bomb causes atoms to split apart, and the energy released causes more atoms to split apart. This was the same, but with energy. This blue ball would cause energy itself to split apart, ad infinitum. This was more destructive and powerful than any nuclear bomb.
This process would destroy energy itself. The first law of thermodynamics. Energy cannot be created or destroyed. I had just broken the laws of physics.
This ball of fusion also gave off light.
The lightning and fire also gave off light, but this was different. I could control the light that this ball gave off. This light had power. It wasn't normal light. It contained minuscule amount of power which were contained inside the blue ball of annihilation. The light contained the power of annihilation.
That made me realize that I didn't have complete control over what I had created. The power was escaping from the system!
Under my almost complete control and under my very eyes, the transparent blue ball of fusion disappeared. I could still feel that it was inside my soul, but I couldn't access it or control it anymore.
What had I done.
Authors Note: Enjoy the very late chapter. I have a side project I will be working on simultaneously with this one. The format of this side project is different. It's less draining on me. Chapters are shorter and well, less thought out and intricate. The Conquering Couple Check it out!
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- Author Of Stories
I'm a university student in Toronto. I've been seriously reading Xainxia since Ren started translating Coiling Dragon and now I'm a hopeless addict. I've loved the genre but always thought that an English, Philosophical, and Scientific element added onto Xianxia would make it amazing. So that's what I did. An A.I Is Such A Cheat In The Martial World is my take on the genre. A Dangerous New World is my other serious novel which takes a look at an Apocalypse world mixed with Gaming elements.
Thanks for reading my novels. Cheers.