Chapter 98: Graduation credit (9)
Source of a god’s power?
Di Lin’s heart tensed up in that instant.
His experience outside Dabei city had given him a profound understanding of the difference between gods and humans. Even someone as powerful as Hydin would not have the strength to strike back when faced with a god’s absolute power.
He looked down at the godhead in his hands. Its appearance was very ordinary. If it had been thrown by the roadside, he definitely wouldn’t pick it up. But since the Society of the God of Light dared to publicly auction it off, the chances of it being a godhead was a hundred percent.
“Quote a price!” Someone below called out.
Di Lin looked at the officiant.
The officiant said dully, “Give a random number.”
Di Lin was struck dumb. He hadn’t even known what a godhead was till this day, yet he now had to quote a price for it?
“Lower, lower!” Someone shouted from below again.
Di Lin composed himself. He might not know whether a godhead had any use to humans, but he could be sure of one thing – it was definitely much rarer than a forbidden magic scroll. Therefore, no matter how low its price was, it couldn’t be lower than the lowest price of the magic scroll.
He opened his mouth contemplatively, “Five hundred and fifty thousand gold coins.”
The entire venue went up in an uproar.
Mages were rich, but there weren’t many who could casually take out a couple hundred thousand gold coins like Ka Nong.
“Six hundred thousand gold coins,” Ka Nong quoted a price. His expression was solemn, the gaze he directed at the box brimming with resolve. Evidently, he was determined to obtain it.
“Seven hundred thousand gold coins,” After the initial shock, the mages jumped into action one after the other.
What was a godhead? It was a thing of the legends. Yet it had truly appeared and could even be bought with money. Every person in the venue only had one thought – that they would regret it for a lifetime if they didn’t obtain it.
“One million and eight hundred thousand!”
The shouting of prices reached a climax.
Those competing were not only mages. There were also many merchants, mercenaries… In short, the entire venue had gone crazy.
The languid voice was like an exasperatingly slow blade that blocked up everyone’s throats, choking their yells.
Di Lin glanced at Hydin.
His arms were crossed carelessly, completely disregarding the surrounding scarlet eyes.
“Six million.” Ka Nong’s forceful shout set him up as another figure for everyone to pay attention to.
“Ten million,” Hydin didn’t even blink.
Ka Nong swallowed with difficulty. The entirety of his assets amounted to approximately nine million coins; ten million was already more than he could bear. But it was a godhead… An inferno raged in his eyes.
“One hundred million gold coins,” He heard himself shout.
The entire venue was shrouded in silence.
Everyone was struck dumb by this astronomical price. Within a blink of an eye, the price had increased by tenfold!
“One hundred and one million,” Hydin said leisurely.
Ka Nong turned his head, his gaze as sinister as hellfire. “Youngster, can you take out that much money?”
Hydin shrugged. “Is that a question?”
Ka Nong said, “The financial ability of our Vicenite clan is robust, you won’t be able to win against us.”
Many mages present inhaled sharply.
Vicenite was considered an ancient clan in the entire Dream Continent. Its history dated back even further than Shamanril and Kanding Empire. Nobody knew exactly how wealthy Vicenite was, much less how many powerful mages they had under them.
Vicenite’s strength differed from Saint Padeus’. Because they were a clan, all members shared in the clan’s glory. Thus, they were not any less difficult to deal with than Saint Padeus.
If it wasn’t for the godhead being too pricey, Ka Nong would not have revealed his family name. After all, he wasn’t a core member of the clan. But he couldn’t be too concerned about this now. As long as he obtained the godhead, the clan would definitely support his actions.
The mage who had glared at Ka Nong previously was also very shocked. He had always thought of Ka Nong simply as a high ranked mage with an eccentric personality. He hadn’t expected him to actually hail from the Vicenite clan.
Hydin stated, “Doesn’t matter. Continue.”
Ka Nong glared at him fiercely. The relationship between him and Hydin was similar to the relationship between him and that other mage, just that the characters had changed.
“One hundred and one million going once,” Di Lin interrupted their confrontation. “One hundred and one million going twice.”
“One hundred and five million!” Ka Nong went for broke.
If worse came to worst, he could hand the godhead to the clan. Given the clan’s financial resources, handing over a hundred and five million wasn’t anything much. Furthermore, their willingness to do so was guaranteed.
Hydin didn’t even blink. “Two hundred million.”
Ka Nong nearly spat out blood. “You have two hundred million?” Even the Basco clan would not necessarily be able to come up with such a sum.
Hydin replied, “That’s my problem.”
Ka Nong gritted his teeth, saying hatefully, “Do you dare to leave your name!” He didn’t dare to increase the price any further since he had no idea what stance the clan would take. If the clan didn’t care about this godhead, he would definitely not be able to foot the bill.
“Hydin·Tagilis,” Hydin didn’t hesitate.
Everyone took yet another sharp breath.
The mages originally intending to steal the godhead quietly gave up on this idea.
The top mage in the Continent.
A mage that even Brandry conceded defeat to was definitely not someone they could successfully steal from.
Ka Nong slowly turned his head, no longer looking at him. His heart felt empty. If it was just Hydin, he might still be able to persuade the clan to plunder the item. However, standing behind Hydin was Saint Padeus, whose enormous influence was not inferior to the clan’s. Moreover, Hydin himself was most assuredly not someone they would want to provoke.
Di Lin saw that the rest were silent and directly yelled out thrice before settling the deal.
The goods would be handed over backstage. Thinking of how Glory of Grusen had vanished the other time, Di Lin didn’t dare to be careless and personally delivered the item backstage with the officiant.
The other mages reluctantly watched his figure vanish before leaving in twos and threes.
Hydin had long since used wind magic to fly backstage and was waiting for them.
The moment Di Lin saw him, he threw the box at him. “Put it inside your space bag after checking it.”
No matter how powerful the people from the robbers’ guild were, it was impossible for them to stick their hands into Hydin’s space bag.
Hydin opened the box, turned the earth-yellow stone around, and gave it a few glances before directly throwing it into his space bag. His nonchalant attitude made it seem as if it was just an ordinary stone.
The Head and the officiant looked at each other in dismay.
The officiant couldn’t help saying, “Master Tagilis, you haven’t paid.”
They didn’t have a choice. Di Lin had kept his elbows turned in and delivered the item too quickly, causing the exchange to become an extremely passive one.
Hydin said, “Ask Orosai for it.”
The officiant hesitated, “If by any chance the chairman of the institution…” He didn’t finish his sentence, but his meaning was very clear. Getting the institution to foot the bill for something he had purchased was illogical.
Hydin smiled. “Relax, he will foot the bill.”
The officiant asked, “This, how should I ask for it?”
Hydin answered. “Research funds.”
An image of the chairman’s expression while sending the desk in his office flying surfaced in Di Lin’s mind.
The officiant thought about it. After all, the other party was one of the most powerful people in the Dream Continent; he shouldn’t renege on a debt. Feeling a little more reassured, the officiant hurriedly bid them goodbye and rushed back to the shrine to report what had happened.
Di Lin finished his auction task and went home with Hydin.
Along the way, Di Lin voiced the doubts in his heart. “Why does the Society of the God of Light have a godhead?”
Hydin replied, “The God of Light is the strongest god in the Dream Continent. It’s very normal for her to have the godhead of other gods.”
“But why did the Society of the God of Light auction it?” Di Lin was still very perplexed by this question. Even if it wasn’t the God of Light’s godhead, its value meant that it should be consecrated within the God of Light’s shrine.
“I don’t know. But one thing that’s definite is that ordinary people will not be able to use this godhead.”
Di Lin was astonished. “Why?”
Hydin said, “If it could be used, the Society of the God of Light wouldn’t give it away so openly.” Even if it was a shattered godhead, what it contained was still a god’s power. It would still be a grave threat to the Society.
Di Lin was stunned. “Then what use is there in buying it?”
Hydin responded. “To admire.”
Although Hydin said that it was to admire it, Di Lin understood his intentions behind purchasing it after giving it a little more thought. Regardless of whether or not a godhead had any use, it was still a god’s most precious object, as well as a symbol of the highest power. If it wasn’t Hydin who bought it during today’s auction, others would definitely optimistically contest for it. This would trigger a chaotic fight and the auction would go out of hand.
“We’re going back to Saint Padeus tomorrow?” Di Lin had two considerations. The first was that they had a valuable treasure on them. Even if they had intimidated the people at the auction, it was difficult to guarantee that other influential and powerful figures would not covet it. The second consideration was that there was only slightly more than a month left to the tasks’ deadline and the last task had to be carried out in the Nightmare Forest beside Saint Padeus’ Institution.
Hydin glanced at him. “Okay.”
Some words need not be said.
The capital of Santu, Neil city.
In the center of the central shrine of the Society of the God of Light, a pure and holy radiance shone down.
A faint figure of an elegant and beautiful goddess standing within the radiance could be seen.
The pope was dressed in a simple yet luxurious white gown, standing piously in front of the figure. His hands were held together while his upper body leaned slightly forward as if in prayer.
A rank eight divine officiant stood behind him with an expression of respect.
Time flew by.
A long while later, the pope stood up and looked back slowly. “Triste.”
“Yes, Your Majesty,” Triste looked up, his light gray eyes calm.
“Has the godhead been sold?”
“Yes. Saint Padeus’ Magic Institution’s Hydin·Tagilis bought it.”
“Hydin?” The pope asked. “That great mage that fought with the God of Slaughter to the end?”
Triste said, “I think he has already surpassed the ordinary great mage.”
The pope responded. “Oh. A God of Slaughter with only half a godhead remaining is still a god. Injuring him with human strength is indeed very impressive.”
Triste said, “Now that he has the shattered godhead of Mother Earth, will he…”
“The reason why godheads are godheads is because only gods can use it,” The pope said. “Just like how the magic nuclei of magic beasts are useless to us.”
Triste asked, “Then why did he buy it?”
The pope said, “All true powerful individuals are unwilling to lose. Perhaps he wants to find a way to defeat gods, or perhaps he wants to become a god. But all these are not important, all we need to do is wait for the gods to come out from the Gods’ Domain. Mother Earth is the God of Slaughter’s mother; he would not stay silent if he knew that his mother’s shattered godhead had landed in a human’s hands.”
Triste inquired, “Are there really gods who can leave the Gods’ Domain?”
“Just because they didn’t in the past doesn’t mean they never will. Don’t underestimate a god’s power, especially…” The pope suddenly stopped talking, as if not wanting to utter that name. He looked back and stared fixedly at the beautiful figure in the light, mumbling softly, “This is the prophecy of the great Goddess of Light.”
There was finally some fluctuation in Triste’s gray eyes. “What should we do if they really leave?”
A cold light flashed across the pope’s eyes. “Kill them.”
Since Di Lin and Hydin had returned to the institution in advance, most of the students hadn’t returned yet. Even the chairman Orosai was still on holiday. Only Macreis, the Head Instructor of the Junior School, was overseeing the institution.
His expression immediately changed upon bumping into Hydin in the dining hall. He stealthily pulled Hydin to the side and asked, “You really bought Mother Earth’s godhead?”
Hydin nodded lazily. “En.”
Macreis’ eyes sparkled. He twisted his hands. “Let me see it.”
Hydin took it out from his space bag and casually tossed it to him.
Shocked, Macreis used six types of magic to ensure that it wouldn’t drop on the ground and shatter. He then cautiously picked it up.
He was still examining it after Di Lin and Hydin finished eating.
Di Lin asked curiously, “Can you tell if it has any use?”
Macreis turned it over and scrutinized it many times. Eventually, he couldn’t help asking, “You’re sure you weren’t cheated?”
Hydin said, “That is something the chairman and the pope will need to concern themselves over.”
Macreis asked suspiciously, “Why?”
“Because they will send the bill to Orosai.”
Macreis’ mouth dropped open. He replied after a long time, “The chairman will go crazy.”
Hydin patted his shoulder. “When that time comes, I will support you.”
“Support me, support me for what?” Succeeding the chairman? Macreis found it hard to believe. He hadn’t expected Hydin to accept him so willingly. “Wait, where are you going?”
“Nightmare Forest,” Hydin didn’t even look back.
Macreis glanced at the figure that was moving further and further away and then glanced at the godhead in his hands. “Hey, your godhead!”
“Help me hand it to Orosai,” Hydin said casually.
“…” Macreis examined the godhead meticulously again before wrinkling his brows. “He couldn’t have bought a fake, right?”
Out of the three tasks Orosai had given Di Lin, the last one was the hardest –
Taming magic beasts.
It was known to everyone that wild animals possessed a wild nature while magic beasts possessed a demonic nature. This was especially pertinent to the rank seven, eight, and nine magic beasts, of which Di Lin had been tasked to tame one of each. Magic beasts above the seventh rank were considered high ranking magic beasts. In contrast, the current Di Lin was at best considered rank six within the mage rankings. It was obvious at a glance which party was stronger than the other. Completing this task would require the use of extraordinary methods.
Hydin followed behind Di Lin, watching him fly towards the deepest recesses of the forest.
“What magic beast are you going to tame?” Hydin set up a barrier to facilitate conversation.
Di Lin answered, “I looked through the materials in the library. Among the rank nine magic beasts, the golden blue-eyed bear is the slowest, has the least attack power, and likes living alone. So I’m thinking of first taming it.”
Di Lin smiled. “With a rank nine beast as a helper, taming a rank eight and seven beast would be much easier?” The ranks between magic beasts were clear – with a rank nine magic beast as a helper, taming a rank seven and eight magic beast could be said to be easy.
Hydin said, “Talk after you tame it. The golden blue-eyed bear has a lot of fat, but its skin is thick. Furthermore, a magic beast at this rank has the innate ability to use magic. If I didn’t recall wrongly, there are two magic nuclei in the golden blue-eyed bear.”
Di Lin stared blankly. “Two magic nuclei?”
Hydin explained, “Therefore, it can use two types of magic.”
Magic beasts were different from humans. Humans used magic by depending on their perception and spiritual energy to control the elements, whereas magic beasts relied on their magic nuclei to absorb elements and discharge them. Therefore, humans could only use one type of elemental magic, since getting close to one element meant distancing oneself from the other three types. On the other hand, as long as a magic beast had sufficient magic nuclei, they could make use of more than one elemental magic.
Di Lin felt that this was a thorny issue. “What two types of magic can it use?”
“Wood and earth.”
Di Lin’s heart sank.
In the forest, these two types were undoubtedly the hardest to deal with.
He started to drill various strategies to counter earth and wood magic in his mind. Just as Suo Suo’s current tutor Wei Da had said, the earth element was strongest among the four elements when used for defense. Coupled with the golden blue-eyed bear’s naturally invulnerable skin, its defense could practically be termed impenetrable. The weakest element among the four types, the wood element, was like fish in water when used in the forest. The forest was the place which would best bring out its attack and defense capabilities.
Di Lin was suddenly very annoyed that he was a water type mage and not a fire type. He had previously thought of leveraging on the speed of wind magic to attack the golden blue-eyed bear, but looking at it now, it didn’t seem very realistic since it was entirely possible for the bear to wrap itself up in its defense.
Di Lin overthrew his previous way of thinking after walking in the forest for three days.
It turned out that the hardest part about this type of practice was not defeating the magic beast but finding it.
Ever since the removal of the seal on the Nightmare Forest, the state of it had become extremely unstable. Exceedingly good luck was needed to find his target under such circumstances.
Hydin asked abruptly, “What about the snow leopard?”
Di Lin asked, “What is that?”
Hydin extended a hand and pointed ahead, “That one?”
Not long after he uttered these words, Di Lin saw a graceful leopard walk slowly out of the thicket. Its black fur shone underneath the sunlight and the front of its four legs was colored a white as pure as snow. It was evidently quite diligent in maintaining its personal cleanliness.
“What rank is it?” Di Lin hadn’t continued looking through the rest of the magic beasts after deciding on the golden blue-eyed bear.
Di Lin’s heart trembled.
The personalities of rank nine magic beasts differed, but there was hardly any difference in their strength!
Since unequaled defense and dual-element magic was the golden blue-eyed bear’s traits, this snow leopard’s strength would not be much weaker than it.
“What are its characteristics?” Di Lin had just spoken when he felt a gust of wind sweep past him. By the time he hastily set up a barrier, there was already an extra bloody scratch on his face.
The snow leopard had already returned to its former position and was gently licking the soles of its feet, as if it had never left.
“It’s a fire type,” Hydin’s voice sounded from seven to eight meters behind him. “It is the only magic beast that can use fire elements and wind magic.”
Di Lin’s eyes lit up.
If it used wind magic, then he was certain that he could break through it!
Just as he was regaining his confidence and preparing to strike, something flashed swiftly past his eyes and countless fire shadows surrounded him in a scattered formation. Under the attacks of the fire shadows, his water barrier was practically plastered to his body.
“Roar,” The snow leopard’s eyes suddenly appeared before him.
Di Lin’s heart thumped, and the water elements burst out in an instant, forcibly pushing the fire shadows away.
Hydin commented mildly, “It’s only sounding you out.”
As if corroborating his words, the snow leopard rushed forward again. However, its speed this time was much faster than the previous instance.
Di Lin couldn’t even make out its figure before he was knocked down heavily.
“Puh,” Blood welled up his chest and he couldn’t help but spit out a mouthful of blood. He hadn’t tempered his body much after becoming a mage, so his constitution could no longer be compared to the past.
Hydin furrowed his brows slightly. “Do you want to give up?”
Di Lin slowly stood up. He hadn’t managed to answer when he was once again knocked down.
Although it was slightly better this time. He had managed to use a water barrier to protect himself before he was knocked down, so he only took a tumble and wasn’t injured.
Di Lin pressed a hand against the tree at the side and quickly stood up, fighting spirit completely different from the leopard’s cold gaze flickering in his eyes. “It’s settled then, this will be the one!”
 Having one’s elbows turned in means helping one’s own people, regardless of whether it is rational or not to do so.