”So you ’re human? ” Wei Wuyin commented aloud, caressing his chin in thought as he observed the figure before him. It was none other than the owner of the masculine voice that had tried to strike him. He was of average height, roughly five feet and six inches tall, athletic build with defined muscles, a creamy brown-colored skin tone, and messy medium-length burgundy hair with scarlet highlighted tips. The contours of his face were relatively sharp, especially his chin, alongside scarlet-colored monolid eyes.
These features generated a somewhat handsome and wild presence to his existence. At the moment, he was pouting with narrowed eyes as he observed Wei Wuyin.
”So you ’re blind? ” He countered. Clearly, he realized that Wei Wuyin hadn ’t opened his eyes a single time, yet had reacted and struck him with extreme precision. This could only be attributed to him as a cultivator that had lost their visual perception and honed their other senses.
”… ” Wei Wuyin ’stared ’ at him for a long moment. The man tensed, making faintly uncomfortable stutters in his movement as if faced with some unsettling pressure, turning his eyes away from Wei Wuyin. Wei Wuyin had obviously left his mark on his psyche with that earlier punch.
”You can say that, ” Wei Wuyin answered after intimidating this elite Soldier of War. ”What ’s your name? ”
The man harrumphed quietly, ”What does that matter? ” Despite asking this, his tone was soft and non-confrontational.
”Why are you being so difficult? Is it enjoyable? ” Wei Wuyin lightly sighed. This man was a little frustrating to interact with. If he could, he would unhesitatingly inspect his Sea of Consciousness, grasping his memories before sending him off.
”Difficult? You calling me a woman?! ” The man seemed to be unnaturally triggered by the term, as if linked to some ungodly memory in the depths of his mind.
Wei Wuyin was taken aback. ”Don ’t generalize a gender, and women aren ’t the only ones that can be difficult. Look at you, a full-grown man yet already approaching one of the most annoying and difficult people I ’ve met in the Battlefield. And I ’ve led an entire group of women and men. At least they all knew how to answer a question properly. ” The outburst comment of misogyny was quite unexpected, but Wei Wuyin cared little for the man ’s mental scars or past sufferings.
”… ” The man was instantly stifled by that response, unable to muster a retort. After a long while, he released a heavy sigh and begrudgingly said, ”My name ’s Guan Yu. Yours? ”
”…Wei Wuyin. ”
While Wei Wuyin couldn ’t exactly see Guan Yu ’s expression, he felt the resistance to his circumstances had softened considerably, reducing the tension in the air once again. With this, he took the initiative to ask a series of questions regarding the Battlefield and Nexus Battlefield.
When Guan Yu realized that Wei Wuyin ’s knowledge of the Battlefield was lacking, not to mention completely unaware of certain things regarding the Nexus Battlefield, he was so astonished that he went mute for a very long moment. It was only after Wei Wuyin urged him to hurry along that he started to speak again.
Guan Yu might be a little annoying, but he truly was a trove of knowledge regarding the Nexus Battlefield. For one, the Nexus Battlefield was unlike the Battlefield. It was constantly active. Furthermore, it wasn ’t a battlefield for an army, but for the individual. No, that ’s not correct.
Guan Yu said that those who entered the Nexus Battlefield can only leave after two conditions: They either earn the qualifications to observe the Obelisk of War or earn sufficient War Souls to exchange for their temporary relief of duties. In a way, it was exactly like how the Battlefield required ten War Souls to be accumulated to earn the right to return home.
However, the number of War Souls required was astronomically higher in comparison. It was set at 1,000 War Souls, a hundred times that of the Battlefield. If one desired to leave after accumulating this amount, they had to arrive at the edge of the Nexus Battlefield and come into direct contact with the Walls of Nexus, the violet and silver borders of this world.
However, the act of earning the qualifications to observe the Obelisk of War was extremely difficult, if not outright impossible according to Guan Yu. To observe the Obelisk of War at the center of the Nexus Battlefield, a Soldier of War must defeat an entire army fielding 10,000. This army wasn ’t real individuals, but manifestations that were extremely strong.
There was no other option but to kill all 10,000 to earn that particular qualification, and according to Guan Yu, he had never heard of anyone who was capable of achieving that feat.
However, because of this, the Soldiers of War sent here hunted each other. They killed to snatch the War Souls the others gained and find a way to escape, lest they be stuck in here indefinitely. With such subpar, if not, complete lack of a cultivation environment, they would stagnate and die of old age.
”Why is it impossible? ” Wei Wuyin asked.
Guan Yu stared at Wei Wuyin for a moment, giving him a strange expression as if saying: ”Isn ’t it obvious? ” Yet when he recalled that Wei Wuyin was blind, unable to see his expression, he coughed lightly with some embarrassment. He gathered himself and answered: ”Each soldier is comparable to a genuine Ascended being, a cultivator at the Soul of Mysticism Phase, and some even greater. They have tough bodies and can wield mystic-graded armaments and armors.
”However, us Soldiers of War are all mortals who can only conjure astral-graded armaments and armors. ” There was a hint of frustration in his tone, clearly he felt this was an unfair circumstance.
”There ’s no Mystic Ascendants here? ” Wei Wuyin was expecting this, but if this army had Ascended beings at the Second Stage standard, it would only make sense that the Nexus Battlefield had Ascended as well.
”Haha, you wish. What lower-leveled Ascended has the means to enter here? ” Guan Yu laughed freely, truly finding Wei Wuyin ’s comment hilarious.
”…Lower-leveled Ascended? ” Wei Wuyin questioned. He wasn ’t familiar with the standard of Guan Yu, unsure if it rivaled Wang Yutian ’s world view or not. After all, Wang Yutian considered Mystic Star Phase cultivators as false Ascended. In fact, the vast majority of elite cultivators within the Grand Cyclic Stellar Region and Jing Jiu ’s own stellar region had very similar standards.
”Yeah, lower-leveled Ascended. Those at the first through third stage of the Mystic Ascendant Realm. Don ’t tell me you don ’t know of them either? ” Guan Yu was skeptical. Was Wei Wuyin some country bumpkin out in the backwater sticks or something? But that didn ’t make sense; all those who had the bestowed title of Soldier of War, earning the qualifications of reaching the Nexus Battlefield, were all top-tier warriors of the finest quality with established backgrounds.
Not only did these Soldiers of War have to earn 100 War Souls in the Battlefield, but they also needed at least three premium merits awarded to them. Typically, this was only accomplished by soldiers who ’ve survived the Battlefield multiple times in outstanding fashion.
Wei Wuyin inquired further on this subject of lower-leveled Ascended and learned exactly why they were unable to earn the qualifications to enter in Guan Yu ’s opinion. According to Guan Yu, Ascended required far more War Souls and merits to earn the qualifications to be here. They needed to earn 10,000 War Souls and seven premium merits. While it was technically easier to acquire as an Ascended, since they earned nothing from killing mortals, they had to kill those of their cultivation base.
That was extremely difficult when Ascended were deployed in a balanced fashion, unlike the loose limitations for mortal deployment. If three Demi-Mortal Lords are deployed for one army, then three Demi-Mortal Lords must be deployed by every other army to engage with them. The same standard applies for Mystic Star and Soul of Mysticism Phase cultivators.
However, mortal armies are based on the number of Ascended soldiers deployed, and have a varied range. For every Demi-Mortal Lord, a Battalion, a unit numbering 300 to 1,000 soldiers, can be deployed freely. Races can choose how many they deploy. For every Soul of Mysticism, a Company can be deployed.
When Wei Wuyin read Jing Jiu ’s memories, he learned of the titans ’ civil conflicts and birth rate issues. So they often deployed close to the minimum, while humans deployed the maximum all the time.
This wasn ’t reflective of racial strength differences, as quantity of mortals mattered little to the grand scheme of things, and true experts lived for ten or even tens of thousands of years, while even the longest natural lifespan of an Astral Core Realm is roughly two thousand years.
Furthermore, he learned that Guan Yu considered Mystic Star Phase cultivators as genuine Ascended. His response was quite interesting in fact.
”Why wouldn ’t I? If the Battlefield considers them Ascended, why would I call them mortals? I ’m not so ignorant as to consider my understanding above the being that built this, all of this! ” He gestured reverently towards the world, yet was once again embarrassed after remembering Wei Wuyin was unable to see.
This, however, confirmed Wei Wuyin ’s theory that the concept of false and genuine Ascended stemmed from the cultivation society itself and its relative upbringing. He wondered if beings beyond the Mystic Ascendant Realm viewed those who dismissed their first stage as ignorant or laughable.
Eventually, they went back to the main topic, discussing the Nexus Battlefield. To begin with, conjuring armaments! He was deeply curious about this ability, including how he obtained this armor and how he could keep it for himself.
”Oh? You haven ’t felt it? ” Guan Yu asked curiously.
Wei Wuyin frowned, ”Felt what? ”
Guan Yu fell silent for a moment, as if looking at Wei Wuyin strangely, but recalled something. ”Right, you ’re blind AND a mortal being. You are unable to see it, but there ’s numerous motes of white light surrounding you that are traveling alongside you. It ’s why I could tell you were new because they were unused. These lights are called Essence of War. They can be melded into any armament, armor, or item you can think of. However, its limited to only form and always at the peak astral-grade in quality.
”Your current armor is defaultly given, but you can add metallic padding or pauldrons, even straps or other designs if you wish, or outright outfit yourself in heavy metallic armor. Just think of an item in your mind and focus on your immediate surroundings to conjure it. ”
Wei Wuyin was immediately intrigued. He thought for a moment and acted in accordance with Guan Yu ’s instructions.
Suddenly, a faint buzz resounded. Then, Wei Wuyin felt a weight in his hand. A saber that resembled zhanmadao saber with a slightly more prominent curvature of its spine leading to its peak edge. When the saber met his hand, he felt a strange resonance within that caused it to tremble ever-so-slightly.
A saber howl roared!
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