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Published at 18th of October 2020 07:00:37 AM


Chapter 997
The Ape God left a mental brand every fifty years, and forty-five of them had already passed since the last gathering. Moreover, the expert claimed to have seen the Ape God, which turned the situation extremely serious instantly.


There was a chance that the scared expert had misjudged a powerful beast for a god, but Noah wasn't willing to bet his life on the weakness of those inhabiting those lands.

A series of fast thoughts surged and vanished in his mind in a matter of seconds. The truth was that no countermeasure would work against a being of such power. Even if only as a magical beast, a god was still a god.

"Stand up," Noah eventually said as he turned toward the expert. "I want to know everything about this summoning and mental brands."

The old cultivator explained everything he knew and even added his name, Winter, to the list. The Ape God spread peculiar mental waves that forced all the humans in their range to converge in its lair.

The brands forced every cultivator to respect the Kesier species' authority and prevented them from attacking any of those beasts.

Winter said that the hatred of the Ape God knew no limits. It passed down some of its emotions when it set the brands, and the cultivators could understand how intensely it loathed humans and the reason behind that.

The Ape God wanted to make those that had hunted its species pay. It forced them to a life of hiding underground, ruled by the same Kesier species that they had almost exterminated in the past.


"Why isn't anyone trying to leave?" Noah asked. It was possible to skip the summoning if he returned to the sea of lava and remained there for a few months.

The orders of the Kesier species' specimens were absolute for the branded cultivators, but some of them didn't have them. Noah didn't, but others had managed to remove it.

Winter didn't know much about that topic, but he claimed that experts roamed through those lands and prepared the ground for a revolt. Still, the issue with that piece of information was the same as the others. It came from an unreliable source.

"You can, some can, most can't," Winter replied with a helpless tone. "The Ape God only needs to brand you once to prevent you from leaving. Those who can escape the summoning have learnt secrets that they are slowly spreading through the world."

Noah couldn't understand if Winter had reached an unfixable state of delusion or if he needed to believe in those things to keep living in that world.

His knowledge came from reports left behind previous inhabitants of the underground areas that his tribe occupied after the summoning. That was the only way to communicate through tribes, which meant that they exchanged information only every fifty years!

That wasn't enough for Noah. It barely reached an acceptable level when it came to the reliability of the source of those reports. He needed far more if he wanted even to consider facing a god.



"Let me in," Noah said as his consciousness enveloped the rank 4 cultivator and seeped inside his mind. That process would typically hurt Winter, but he was allowing the inspection of the foreign force.

Noah could see the insides of Winter's sea of consciousness. Four Kesier runes floated above his half-transparent figure, but the rest of the sphere was empty. There was only a shining azure mark lingering at the top of its walls.

The light of the mark flickered rhythmically and radiated a pale halo that spread through the mental sphere. The halo seeped through the sea too, affecting Winter's thoughts and limiting his mental energy usage.

Noah had never seen anything like that. It was rare for a technique that affected the free will of a cultivator to be so harmless. Winter appeared completely fine in the end. No one would notice anything strange in him unless they inspected the insides of his mind.

Moreover, he could confirm that one of Winter's beliefs was on point. Noah could not accurately evaluate auras far above his level, but he recognized the divine presence, especially after his trip to Shandal's separate dimension.

The mark and the light that it radiated were definitely above the heroic ranks in terms of power. Noah didn't know if the Ape God was a proper divine existence or a being that was only half-step inside that realm. Still, sensing the divine made him abandon any intention to test its call.


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Now he had a serious choice to make, and there was even a time limit to it.

"Where can I find those that have managed to escape the branding?" Noah eventually asked. Winter knew too little, and there was no point in making decisions with that bit of information. It was better if he directly questioned the experts that were already able to dream about an insurrection.

Of course, Winter didn't know anything about them either. He was a simple cultivator that dreamed about escaping that cycle of tortures, but he didn't have to power to do it.

He even refused Noah's offer to look for other rebels together. Winter was set on trying to ignore the summoning before joining any unruly act. Otherwise, the Ape God would see all his plans and deploy its soldiers to stop them.

Noah left on his own. He had less than five years before the next summoning, and he wanted to discover everything that the world had to offer.

However, finding cultivators that were capable of hiding from a god was the opposite of easy. Noah didn't have any luck and spent those years flying and cultivating.

He kept the red waterfalls nearby and paid attention to the passage of time though. He couldn't risk touching the aura of the god.


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He did find something that made him settle on a region until the day of the meeting. Noah had found a solitary mountain inhabited by a member of the Kesier species in the sixth rank.

Approaching that creature was impossible, and the same went for thinking about defeating it. Still, Noah only needed to have direct contact with its sixth rune to train his mind, and that was doable if he played his cards right.

It took him a bit of work and some planning, but he managed to force the mighty Ape out of its lair multiple times a week. He only needed to prepare a series of traps that made use of the instabilities.

The traps wouldn't inure the rank 6 Ape, but they could force it on a pre-planned route that allowed Noah to stare at its sixth Kesier rune from a hole in the black sky.

He had to waste many resources, but his mind improved quickly due to those investments.

The summoning day eventually arrived then, and Noah returned to the sea of magma to escape the range of the Ape God's mental waves. Five years weren't enough for his plans, but maybe he could do something in fifty.


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