Chapter 1386 Bending the Knee
The battle had concluded, but the shockwaves created in the process had yet to cease.
Greem maintained his thousand-meter form, the marks of the battle rapidly fading from sight. The Orb of the Fire God residing in his pounding heart regularly supplied him with fire energy, as if it had opened a portal to the Fire Elementium Plane itself.
The Heart of Principles pumped with all its power, furiously compressing and refining all that fire energy.
When it turned into golden flames and surged out of the Heart of Principles, a powerful and majestic aura of laws spread outward.
As the golden flames surged throughout Greem’s body and gathered into a roaring torrent of fire, ancient principle power rose and filled every inch of his body. The principle power even reached into his soul and conducted a thorough modification.
According to the World of Gods, Fourth Grade was the highest that mortal creatures could ever achieve. Another step further, and they would unavoidably come into contact with the boundary that separated gods and men. One more step and they would become gods. They would become true immortals. However, any who could not cross that boundary would remain mortal. Their souls would eventually fall apart, and their bodies would rot, returning to the cycle of the plane.
To clearly denote the boundary between god and man, the gods characterized peak Fourth Grades as demigods. These were individuals who had one foot within the realm of the immortals. You could only ascend to become a true god after advancing to Fifth Grade!
According to the World of Adepts’ principles, only those who had advanced to Fourth Grade could repeatedly refine their bodies and souls to complete the principle modifications required for their Fifth Grade advancement.
The fundamental requirements for advancing to Fifth Grade and completing the principle modifications to the soul were 50 points of Spirit and thorough control over a complete principle!
Greem’s current situation was very unusual, indeed.
Firstly, his Spirit was no more than 47 points at the moment, having had a single point increase in the battle earlier. He had not even reached the prerequisite for advancing to Fifth Grade.
However, the enhancements from the two pieces of Fifth Grade divine equipment as well as his extraordinary experiences had allowed him to refine the Undying Flames prematurely. It was a bonafide principle fire!
All these factors accumulated, along with the planar consciousness’ reward for his victory over the abyssal demons, allowed a principle modification of his soul to occur.
To put it in more understandable terms, other peak Fourth Grade elementium adepts tidied up their rooms before carefully inviting their guests inside. In Greem’s case, he had brought the guest into his room before it was even done being furnished.
Principle fires were one of the superior powers of the planar worlds, after all. They could not even be touched by one with a mortal body!
That was why Greem didn’t dare revert to his human form even after the battle had ended. He retained his thousand-meter giant form.
If he forcefully reverted to his original form, he would explode almost immediately. The reason for that was simple. His human form was incapable of containing the powerful and overwhelming principle power he now possessed!
He could only maintain his current form, trying his best to use the principle fire to modify his soul and original body until they could accommodate the principle powers.
Of course, this was secret, personal information that only Greem himself knew. The other adepts had no means of finding out.
When they saw Greem easily maintain his thousand-meter-tall body and send the Fifth Grade abyssal pit fiend fleeing in an overwhelming fashion, all the adepts felt was fear and respect. That depressing thought of never being able to defeat Greem also surged through their minds.
That was particularly the case for Mornashen Gaia!
The many Fourth Grade adepts cautiously flew out of the adept tower and slowly approached Greem. Greem was so large that they didn’t quite know how to interact with him for a moment.
If they stood on the ground, there would be a thousand-meter giant and adepts that looked like ants to him. Was Greem supposed to bend all the way over to talk to them?
Fly in front of his face? Would that…be perceived as an affront to him and anger him?
The Fourth Grade adepts knew they were not as powerful as Greem, but they had always mentally regarded him as a peer of theirs. Even though Greem was improving far faster than them and was slightly more powerful, they were all still Fourth Grade adepts; there wasn’t a fundamental difference in their positions.
At this moment, when they saw his towering figure and felt his overwhelmingly superior aura, they felt a genuine sense of defeat in their hearts for the first time.
When they looked upon Greem, they were reminded of the times they were apprentices- reminded of the nervousness, fear, and awe they had felt when they saw adepts for the first time. It was a trembling that emanated from the depths of their souls. It was an instinctual desire to flatter when a lesser creature met a higher one.
No one would be foolish enough to walk to their own death, knowing that they were no match.
Thus, flattery and obedience became the only method of self-preservation for many low-grade adepts.
Now, these veteran Fourth Grade adepts who had reigned over the Central Lands for hundreds of years felt this feeling they had not experienced for a long, long time.
Greem smiled when he saw the Fourth Grade adepts drift hesitantly in front of him. He waved his hand and created a hundred-meter-wide fire cloud in front of him. He then said in his deep voice, “Why don’t you stand on here!”
The fire cloud was just barely at Greem’s chest. This way, he didn’t need to lower his head, and they didn’t need to shout. It was a bit more convenient.
The Fourth Grade adepts looked at each other. Finally, they hesitantly stepped on the cloud.
The cloud of fire that Greem had created was formed out of static flames. Stepping on top of it was like stepping on top of soft cotton. However, the might of Greem’s principle fire that he had just demonstrated earlier left a searing impression. Everyone that set foot on the cloud did so gingerly. They were fearful of those horrifying Undying Flames.
Perhaps Mary was the only one among them who did not behave so cautiously in front of Greem.
She flapped her wings and landed on Greem’s shoulder. She walked around curiously there, occasionally pulling at Greem’s giant earlobe and caressing his crimson skin at times. She was like an overly curious child.
With Mary breaking the ice, everyone managed to get over that trace of unfamiliarity and fear they held toward Greem. They gathered around and bowed.
“Lord Greem, could it be? Have you come into contact with the principle threshold and taken the next step?” Mornashen Gaia stepped forward and asked urgently.
He was the one who was most concerned about the answer to this question amongst the adepts.
Greem chuckled when he heard Mornashen’s questions, “You are only half-right!”
Everyone nodded in comprehension.
The fact that Greem could manipulate such powerful principle fire meant that he had definitely mastered his fire principles. However, he still seemed to be lacking something before he could take that next step.
However, none of the adepts really cared about that.
Tossing aside their pride and acknowledging Greem’s position in the Central Lands would be incredibly beneficial for their current situation.
Just take the mega-rift, for example.
If otherworldly invaders heard that there was a powerful adept in the Central Lands capable of defeating a Fifth Grade demon, would they still dare to enter through the rift recklessly? What about the magical creature lords of the Black Forest? Would they still dare to run rampant across the Central Lands?
Greem’s presence alone would be enough to keep many enemies at bay, discouraging them from setting their sights on the Central Lands.
At this moment, the Fourth Grade adepts of the Central Lands finally, truly understood the blessings of having a dominant adept standing behind them all!
“Lord Greem, what do you need us to do henceforth?” The first to stand out and express his stance was unexpectedly the shrewd Matthew. He smiled fawningly, presenting himself as humbly as possible.
What pride and ambition he held had been worn away by that terrifying encounter with the demon. He no longer desired for anything more. That much was evident from how eager he was to express his stance.
Other Fourth Grade adepts might be willing to bend the knee, but they couldn’t quite give up on their dignity so quickly.
Greem’s smile didn’t change, but the light gleaming in his large black eyes seemed to soften slightly.
“The Fifth Grade demon might have fled, but three of the Fourth Grade demon lords have escaped into the Central Lands. Split them amongst yourselves and decide who’s more suited for a hunting mission.”
Everyone had seen what occurred earlier.
When the Fifth Grade demon was defeated, it had fled to the Abyssal World with the Fourth Grade succubus in tow. The other demon lords had been forced back from the mega-rift by the shockwaves. They had no choice but to flee into the distance.
If these three Fourth Grade demons were allowed to roam the Central Lands, they would bring calamity to every clan they came across. Thus, hunting them down was a necessity!
Moreover, while no one might have been willing to take on these Fourth Grade demons during the battle, things were different now. With the wind of victory behind them, these Fourth Grade demons were little more than top-grade resources and materials in their eyes.
The many Fourth Grade adepts present couldn’t help but lick their lips when they heard Greem said this. They couldn’t wait to hunt down these demons.
Declan and Alfred looked at each other. Just as they were preparing to volunteer for the task, Matthew smiled again and spoke up.
“My lord, you are the most powerful adept of the Central Lands. Naturally, we should defer to you in all matters! I, Matthew, will be the first to support your orders, no matter what they might be.”
Declan and Alfred could only stop themselves halfway and curse in their own minds, “Asskisser!”
“Very well!” Greem nodded and said, “It’s just a few demon lords; I won’t be fighting over such morsels. I will stay here and seal the mega-rift. Mary will lead a team to hunt the three demon lords. Matthew, Kerala, Declan, Alfred, and Mornashen- I am sorry to have to ask you to accompany me here on this task!”
“Understood!” The adepts who were named instantly smiled.
Evidently, they knew that following Mary in hunting the Fourth Grade demon was a plump assignment.