Sovereign of the Karmic System - Chapter 552
Headquarters of War’s domain.
“HOW DID THAT HAPPEN!?” Bellowed the middle aged man in military attire who had lost the bet with Daniel, to the championess of Conquest. “I don’t believe a brat like him has that much luck! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT!!” he said as his emotion of rage and worry oozed out of his body into a black mist that darkened the entire room.
The woman, belonging to a domain that was directly subordinate to War’s domain, could do nothing but bear the man’s anger in silence. Luckily for her, this anger was eased the very moment the gazes of the other old champions of War turned to look at the middle aged soldiers, an action that caused for his worry to grow disproportionately, and for his anger to almost disappear.
“Tell us again what happened..” Said calmly the oldest of the cultivators present, who was at the core of the single row of seated champions.
The woman finally raised her gaze, but dared not aim it higher than this old man’s shoulder. She then said, “As ordered, I have shown him a mirage of only one untouched universe. The others were consumed, or in the process of repopulation.. I-”
“Enough.. I have read the report. Tell me what you think.” said the old man, interrupting her.
The woman, startled by the old man’s interruption, briefly turned her gaze towards the middle aged soldier, who appeared to be as, if not more worried than she was. This worry she saw in his eyes brought her no small degree of delight, as while the middle aged warrior belonged to the domain that ruled hers, she was the lead of her own, and more powerful than he was. Being the target of his anger had left her with no small degree of irritation.
More than once during the past few minutes he had tried to put the blame of losing the untouched universe onto her to lighten the burden on himself, and now she had a chance to rectify. “I think general Han is correct.. I do not believe that luck has anything to do with it. That was my impression.”
“How so?” Inquired the old man with a stern, yet curios tone.
The championess of Conquest rejoiced, but did not allow for it to show on her face. Instead, she maintained her stoic composure, and said with a matter-of-fact tone. “The young man.. He knew exactly which universe among the ones I’ve shown him was the untouched one. In fact, he claimed that he was the one cheating, this time-after which his eyes glowed of a golden light, and he picked the untouched universe without even looking at the mirages.”
Silence fell onto the hall, leaving time for the older cultivator to think. After a handful of seconds, the old man turned to look at the middle aged soldier and asked, “I remember you mentioning his eyes, the first time you’ve met him.”
Panicked, the middle aged soldier lowered his gaze, and while trying not to stutter, he said, “Y-Yes.. I saw it right when we first felt the power of Lord Ka..” As if suddenly realizing his mistake, the middle aged soldier stopped talking, but it was already too late.
The temperature of the room suddenly dropped to absolute zero, causing every object that wasn’t protected by someone’s essence to instantly lose their energy, and collapse into shards that disintegrated moments later.
The middle aged soldier felt his heart drop. Once before he had observed Daniel being aided by an aspect of existence, and yet he had decided to underestimate the connection between the two, and challenge him one more time. It was his greed and pride that had caused his domain to lose such a big chunk of its territory.
“You may go now.” Said the old aged cultivator to the championess of Conquest, who once again lowered her gaze, and made her way out of the hall while trying to ignore the murderous intent that came from behind her back.
After the encounter with the championess of Conquest, Daniel had put an end to the meeting with his remaining guests, which mostly belonged to the domain of Morality. These champions agreed to leave with the condition that they would be allowed to have a meeting at a later time to discuss the position of Daniel’s domain within the multiverse.
Another reason why these cultivators had to leave was because the day of the Exalted a.s.sembly was only a few hours ahead, and contrary to Daniel, they had ten thousand cultivators to prepare for that day.
Once alone, Daniel had decided to take his time to observe his new territory.
Sitting quietly on the edge of a cliff, Daniel fumbled with a black gla.s.s cube. His clumsy movements caused the mirage that was in front of his eyes to change, and for it to show different images.
This black cube was known in the multiverse as a Universal Projector, and was used to store and project thousands of recordings of a specific universe, effectively turning a universe into a form of currency. These recordings were not made out of chemicals or films, but of true essences held together by small formations. By moving the projector, Daniel was commanding the formations within the cube to a.s.semble the essences stored inside, and turn them into realistic images, so that he could observe his universe without being there.
While these images did not show the current universe, but a past version of it, Daniel was not worried, as War’s domain would not dare present a consumed universe as an untouched one. If they did, they would be breaching Fate’s contract, and at that point, losing a universe would be the least of their concerns.
What Daniel found interesting, however, were not the mirages created by the projector, but the blinding sea of golden lights that could be seen in some of the images. Lights which, as he soon realized, he could only see when he would allow for his power as Karma to emerge from inside him. These lights, he believed to be sources of Karma.
“What is it?” Daniel suddenly asked a cautious Dawn, who tried to approach him while trying to make as little noise as possible. Standing several meters back was the figure of Rose, who had found herself struggling to maintain Dawn’s pace while walking towards Daniel’s location.
“Uhm.. Rose wanted to..” Dawn said right before turning to look beside her, and noticing that Rose was not standing next to her. “What are you doing? Come here. Didn’t you want to say something?” She told her.
Seeing that Daniel was not opposed to Dawn’s words gave Rose a bit of courage, which allowed her to brave on and walk the last few steps while bearing the pressure she had felt until now. “I came to thank you. Lilith.. She told me that you have risked offending our domain to prevent them from getting rid of us.. And cover-up the incident of our disappearance.”
“No need to thank me. I said that I would take you back to your universe safe and sound. I don’t make empty promises.” Daniel said while pocketing the black cube. He then stood up and turned around. “Is there anything else?” He then asked.
As Daniel focused his attention towards Rose, the pressure she felt in his presence increased exponentially, causing her to breath to shorten, and for her to fidget nervously as her thoughts went haywire. What she did not know, was that this pressure was in reality a psychological trauma which she had developed by witnessing the appearance of Karma. Like a cub weary of its parents, she had developed an instinctive fear of Daniel.
After noticing Rose’s behavior, Daniel quietly took control over the constructed s.p.a.ce around him, and turned the air that the girl was unconsciously breathing into a stream of mental power, which immediately calmed her nerves.
“I would like to keep my memories.” Rose said with a now calmer tone.
“And here I thought you felt grat.i.tude towards me.” Daniel said while showing a forced smile. “I will hear you out.. Why should I do that?”
Rose cleared her throat, then added, “I have witnessed your mental skills.. And I don’t doubt your ability to manipulate our memories, but even if you take us to our sect, or to our families, we will never be safe. We are the only lead in the multiverse of your location, and they will be meticulous in finding every bit of information they can about you, the champion of Destiny.. Or as a champion of Karma.. If they want to know.. They will.”
While these words should have brought Daniel’s illusion of safety crumbling, they did not come as a surprise. He had already expected that in the vast multiverse there would be other ways to gather information than to simply read someone’s memories. There was no reason not to believe that a person’s remnant in the underworld, or the hibernating spirit in the spiritual domain could not be searched for information. For that reason, he had never put too much expectations on the fact that modifying these girls’ memories would keep him safe. At best, it would earn him some time.
“What do you propose, then?” Daniel asked, not anymore in the mood to smile.
“We tell the truth.” Rose said. “Destiny’s champions are hunted down because of their aggressive nature, and unfathomable powers.. But that is not a description that fits your character. You have been kind to us.. and you are not as much of a threat as people believe you to be.”
Rose’s proposition left Daniel speechless. While he knew that Rose’s main goal was to keep her memories of the past events, he could also see that her suspicions towards him had diminished, and had been replaced by a form of reliance and grat.i.tude. If she couldn’t have convinced the other domains that Daniel was not a threat, she would have at least wanted to remember him.
Unfortunately, Rose’s intentions would change nothing. The multiverse would never allow him to live, and more than that, he had no interest in convincing them to. In his heart the pride of an aspect of existence had already been born, and that pride would not allow him any less than annihilating any ent.i.ty that would dare challenge his existence.
“I will grant you your wish.” Daniel said before making a faint gesture with his hand, an action that erased the changes he had made to Lilith’s and Saha’s minds, and restored their former memories.
Elated by Daniel’s decision, Rose bowed her head instinctively, and when she raised it again, a bright smile was present on her face. “I will do everything I can to convince the people of my do-”
“That won’t be necessary.” Said Daniel, interrupting Rose’s words of rea.s.surance. He then added, as a golden light flickered in his eyes, “After the a.s.sembly I will deliver you to your universe. Once there, you are free to report every detail of the time we have spent together. Tell them who I am, tell them what I have done, where we have been, and where they can find me.. Hide nothing. I will welcome them all with open arms.”
As he finished speaking, Daniel stepped off the cliff and disappeared into the constructed sky, leaving a confused Rose, and a worried Dawn.
The following day, after months of preparation, the day of the Exalted a.s.sembly had finally arrived. On that day the representatives of hundreds of domains flocked to the core of the city, where, after confirming their ident.i.ty, they walked through a milky white portal. When they emerged on the other side, they found themselves in an endless white expanse.
On the pristine floor were half tables, and as many as ten thrones for each of them. These tables contained a small portion of the power of each domain of existence, and were placed in rows that indicated the tier of their domain, and the domain’s allegiances.
The first row of tables was reserved for mid tier domains, the highest level of domain that had decided to partic.i.p.ate in the a.s.sembly. Behind them were the mid-low tier domains, and behind them, the domains of lower tier. Had even just one high tier domain chosen to partic.i.p.ate in this exalted a.s.sembly, the hundreds of domains present would have been forced to move back an entire row, even if they were the highest representatives of their faction of domains.
Seen from above, the position of these tables would remind one of a genealogic tree.
The straight part of these half round tables were all pointed towards the same direction, a wooden podium which any of the domains’ representatives could, in turn, use to talk about matters that required the attention of the more domains. Next to this podium, were two more half round tables. One of which was occupied by the members of the hosting domain, the champions of Horror, while the other was empty, and based on the presence of a single seat, reserved for a one man domain.