"This soil and these people…" said Helial in a hoarse voice, before clearing his throat and going on, "power grabs us, blinds us, exiles us in this limbo. People only seek power to hurt, not to deliver justice. If power is so important, why won't you step in in cases like this?"
But it was a rhetorical question. He didn't let the three Seniors a chance to reply.
"Because that is the duty of the new generations, yeah. Pathetical. The truth is that the entire lot of you has already accepted this course of events, unconsciously. Even you, Crispius, even you!"
Crispius violently knitted his eyebrows and snorted icily. But there was nothing we could reply. Helial was right; he had been overlooking these matters for a long time now.
As he shook his head, the most powerful of the three Seniors revealed a bitter smile and said: "I'm sorry, but currently no one in Orma is strong enough to tell what is right and what is wrong. Not even our King, sadly."
From behind Helial, Caesar had not yet uttered a word. Crispius' words though darkened his expression. That was indeed true; there was nothing he could do. Not even him could erase every domestic dissension in Orma. He wasn't that strong.
Suddenly, Binius addressed Helial and blurted out: "You really speak about power?! Look at you! Chained to the ground and unable to move. Where's your power? Hahahah, you'll pay your arrogance with your life before the sun is set!"
Crispius heaved a sigh. As things stood, Helial had to pay with his life. He had killed three Goblins intent on raping a girl. Even though the mere thought of the **** flared Crispius up, this matter was pure politics and many spirits should have been placated that day, one way or another.
Unfortunately, Helial would never become the hero that Orma had been waiting for.
Helial curled his lips in a disdainful expression that vanished a second later, while his eyes began to emit a singular sympathy.
"Is that what you mean by power?"
Binius furrowed his eyebrows. He didn't get what he said, but a second later he wound up open-mouthed.
The cage of chains that pinned Helial down could have blocked the Meridians of anyone under the Fourth Phase. Not even a warrior in the Third Phase could have possibly wiggled out of them. And yet the Senators were witnessing an inconceivable scene.
Flame of the Qilin
A white flame reflected on Crispius' eyes. A terrifying abyss of white flames had just engulfed Helial and his chains. Every chain was slowly vaporizing. Helial stepped back into freedom.
Helial took a few steps forward until he stood a couple of yards away from the Seniors, whose expression had remained unchanged. Helial's expression betrayed a sort of worriedness for those three.
The gaze of that young guy struck Crispius deeply. Similarly, Binius and Philopappus kept quiet as Helial's eyes scanned them one by one. They were still shocked by his tyrannical power.
Caesar satisfactorily nodded to himself. He was ready to rush forward at any second if his disciple's life were in danger. After witnessing his strength for the second time now, he had made up his mind about saving Helial at all costs. Even if he hadn't left the slightest shed of face to that damned Senate.
You old fuckers. If you plan on laying a finger on my boy, I swear I'll dismember every limb of yours, along with those of that son of a bitch who craves my seat. A flash of fierceness glimmered its way out to Caesar's eyes as he stared at the Senate in malice. He gradually began to unleash his Aura to make everyone clear on his intentions.
Crispius awaked from his trance and panted. He unleashed his Aura, which collided with that of Caesar. Despite the fact that he was actually weaker than an Immortal, he wouldn't bow even before the two Immortals of Orma. He hadn't earned the title of hero thanks to chitchat.
Caesar ground his teeth; the power exuded by the King's Aura turned Crispius pale.
Everyone else, meanwhile, gasped and started shouting.
"Look!" said a Senate member.
"That Mana!" someone echoed him.
Caesar and Crispius withdrew their Auras and set their gaze on Helial.
There was no gust of wind, and yet Helial's clothes flapped fitfully. His eyes glimmered like two shining suns. Little Mana rivulets began to materialize all around him.
With the merciful glance that a god would throw to some poor humans, Helial finally spoke: "I, Helial, swear on all the Mana that reigns in the universe that no evil thoughts on the Goblin population has ever blemished my mind. I swear to treat all Goblins in Orma like brothers, as long as they prove to be brothers instead of beasts. I swear to abide by the law and become his hands whenever due. I swear to never smear my hands with cruel acts towards just Goblins, as well as I swear to erase any Goblin that stands in my way with the worst intentions."
When Helial ended his Mana Oath, his body was enveloped by a majestic divine light that made him look more like a god than a man. At the same time though, his ruthless resolution suggested that he looked more like a demon than a god.
Everyone witnessed the scene open-mouthed.
Helial had just delivered a Mana Oath in which he promised that he would protect every Goblin who had acted correctly. How many member of the Senate would have pronounced those words with his same casualness? Mana Oaths could not be broken, otherwise Meridians would be irreparably damaged, forcing him or her to live as a mere human for the rest of their lives!
No, no Senator would have sworn anything so irreversible. On the contrary, they were gaping at him in fear.
Every Senior, including the King, was now staring at him with eyes hugging fear.
Helial's words left no room for doubt. Helial was no evil; he only aimed at protecting every Goblin who deserved it and erasing those who perpetrated any dishonest and malicious act, be them powerful or not.
Many Senators began to pondered deeply over his words.
That human had accomplished an incredible feat. Even if he had only done it to save himself, his terrifying talent would be enough to allow him to stay in Orma. He could have made one of the most fearful weapons against all Orma's enemies!
And yet, as many people as those wanted Helial dead instead. Despite his Oath, they feared his strength and were afraid to offend him somehow, causing him to get around his oath and finish them off. Those who were most afraid were the members of the Sect of the Worthy.
Caesar, who had been watching from the sidelines up to now, took a step forward and finally spoke: "Well, then. It would appear that we can shut this matter down, can we not? The boy has expressed his clear intention to protect the Goblin population. Does anyone have a problem with that?"
The King's words hadn't died out yet that Binius objected: "Your Majesty! You can't favor this damn human only because he's your pupil! He tarnished himself with the most terrible crime! This strength he showed would be of no use. He burned down some chains, so what? Maybe he used some trick!"
Actually, Binius knew perfectly well how much talent was needed to burn down those chains before even reaching the First Phase. However, he would try to put a stick in Caesar and Helial's wheels down to the last.
A puzzled expression appeared on the face of many of the presents. What if Helial had resorted to a ploy and wasn't actually that strong? Binius' words made everyone on their ear.
Unexpectedly, it was Helial who bothered answering him. Curse of the Demon appeared in a dark beam in his hand. "If you want to taste my strength, I can prove it to you." Then, he turned towards Caesar and said: "I beg your pardon, master."
"What for?" Caesar asked, confused.
"For the damage," said a smiling Helial.
He raised Curse of the Demon over his head as veins bulged violently all over his arms. He gathered all the Mana inside his body and squeezed every bit of energy out of his muscular fibers. He desperately tried to cling to that feeling…
The Senior saw his frightening Aura ripple and distort the air all around them. Apparently, Helial had another twist in the store.
Caesar didn't see through his intentions, at first. But then he saw what stance Helial went into.
Caesar shuddered. It was the same move that aroused a primordial fear in him when Helial wounded his palm. He was about to stop him, afraid that the boy would get hurt, when he noticed that his Aura seemed to be more stable this time. Equally, the strength seemed to be somewhat lacking in power. But before slowing down the pace, Helial's Aura had already reached the Fourth Phase.
Most likely I'll be bed-ridden for a week if I want to recover, Helial thought to himself with a sigh. But there was no time to hesitate.
With a terrifying explosion, his Aura increased again as the Mana gathered inside his body began to seethe, waiting to be unbridled.
The world seemed to lose his colors in various points, as though life had been wiped out in some areas of the Senate. Caesar witnessed the scene and knitted his forehead. Last time, the Skill's effects had been far more terrifying than that. Helial was holding back to avoid excessive damage. After all, he wouldn't risk his life this time. As soon as he realized it, the King relaxed and resolved to enjoy the show.
The expression on the Seniors' faces betrayed the utmost shock. They stared in astonishment at that boy who rouse divinely before them. The Aura exuded by Curse of the Demon instilled a primordial terror in their very bones.
Helial slashed down. The energy was unleashed all at once. In the blink of an eye, the slash covered the distance between Helial and the Seniors.
A dazzling light blinded all of the spectators. Crispius brought a hand to his face to block the blow.
Helial's slash extinguished on Crispius' palm as though it had hit an iron bar. The light grew gradually dim, letting everyone behold the result. Despite the fierceness of that slash, Crispius was still in the Tenth Phase. Besides an inexplicable terror, the blow hadn't pose the slightest threat to him.
Helial lay unconscious on the ground. Caesar had appeared by his side, ready to fend for him with his life.
Crispius looked at his hand, then glanced behind his back with the corner of his eye and shook his head. He whispered to himself: "Innocent." The entire Senate fell silent. Crispius repeated, this time louder: "I plead Helial, Caesar's disciple, innocent."
Everyone was too shocked to object. Only Binius, indignant, spoke: "Excuse me?! The boy isn't strong enough! How can you plead him innocent?"
Crispius headed back to the hallway ignoring Binius' protests.
"Crispius! I want an explanation!" Binius boomed out furiously.
Crispius, who was about to step outside the room, raised a hand with the thumb turned backwards. After a second, he walked away.
Binius stared at him in puzzlement before turning towards the back of the room. Then he gasped and opened his mouth wide enough for a chaffinch to nest in it.
Before him, half the Senate had been blown away by Helial's attack. Only half building was still there, the rest had turned into dust. Those walls that could have resisted the assault of a Third Phase warrior without a scratch had been pulverized by a single slash. He had definitely undervalued that human's strength and Caesar's resolution in taking him under his wing.
As he stared blankly at some blocks of marble crumble to the ground, a stone come off the ceiling and fell right on the head of Binius who, still seized by shock, barely felt any pain.
Helial raised up his sorrowful eyes as though his gaze could go beyond the ceiling and glimpse at the sky. Two shiny tears swelled up at the corners of his eyes, like dew on thin blades of grass. Helial took a deep breath, blinked his eyes to force the tears away and set his gaze on Crispius. The latter's eyebrows were slightly furrowed in the middle, in a strangely sympathetic expression.