Please switch to other image servers if images don't load. If still doesn't work, report error to us to fix it.
Server 1 Server 2 Server 3
This sudden action from Kerslin not only caught the a.s.sociation by surprise but Greem as well. He had a confused expression stuck on his face.

He was a compatriot similar to it? That Kerslin could sense the Chip's existence?

Greem suddenly started panicking when he heard the various frustrated shouts from around him. He couldn't help but cut off the mental connection with this strange lifeform.

[Detecting unknown data source. Given the current Second Cla.s.s authority, host can immediately browse, read, and download some of the public content and information. Requesting instructions from host. Copy information?]

While Greem was panicking, the Chip suddenly spoke up, and his attention immediately snapped back to focus.

Unknown data source? Public content and data?

The data source couldn't be referring to the Zhentarim a.s.sociation's internal database, could it?

"Immediately download all data and copy all information. Move faster."

Greem knew very well that the consequences of this little 'incident' could vary tremendously based on the a.s.sociation's reaction. Once the old fogeys behind the a.s.sociation reacted to what was happening, they would most definitely seal off this breach in their database. As such, any information he could steal from it before they could react would be a win for him.

Greem could sense his mind empty the moment he gave the order. Much of his Spirit silently flowed into the Chip, turning into a mysterious power that sustained the Chip as it went into overdrive.

The Chip had now connected with the mysterious data source in the distance. It started using its newly obtained Second Cla.s.s authority to copy and download all sorts of data and information wildly. Although most of the information was basic knowledge that was available to all adepts belonging to the Zhentarim a.s.sociation, there was simply far too much information that spanned many aspects of the magical system.

There were six of authorities in total: Special Cla.s.s, First Cla.s.s, Second Cla.s.s, Third Cla.s.s, Fourth Cla.s.s, and Fifth Cla.s.s.

Chairman Freed was the only person to have Special Cla.s.s authority, while First Cla.s.s authority belonged to all Fourth Grade adepts of the a.s.sociation. Second Cla.s.s was for internal Third Grade adepts, Third Cla.s.s for Second Grades, Fourth Cla.s.s for First Grades, and Fifth Cla.s.s for apprentices.

With this level of authority, Greem, as an outsider, could enjoy as much power as Laurent, despite having just stepped into the Zhentarim a.s.sociation. He could freely browse the a.s.sociation's data library; it was a once-in-lifetime opportunity.

Thus, while Greem started touring inside of the castle with Laurent's company, he also supported the Chip's incredible demand for spiritual energy with all he had.

Finally, eighty-five seconds after Greem obtained Second Cla.s.s authority, a cold and elderly voice suddenly appeared in his mind.

"It's about time you stop, kid! Hmph! Such a short time here, yet such a big problem has come up for me to deal with."

As the voice rang out, the Chip's mental connection with the data source was abruptly severed. A powerful mental backlash struck at Greem and dazed him for an instant.

Greem suddenly braced himself against the wall while he was walking with Laurent through a quiet tunnel. He grabbed his throbbing head and tried to collect himself. It took several minutes from him to recover from the mental shockwave. The first thing he saw was Laurent's sinister and malicious smile.

"That voice from earlier…" Greem moaned and asked.

"That was Chairman Freed!" Laurent laughed, "You used your authority to go peek at the a.s.sociation's information, didn't you? That is the result of the a.s.sociation's acc.u.mulation over thousands of years. The chairman won't let an outsider like you browse through the information like that, so it's only natural that he has to make you suffer a little bit!"

No wonder Laurent was laughing in such a relaxed and unconcerned fas.h.i.+on. After all, it had barely been a minute between Greem obtained the Second Cla.s.s authority and being kicked out by the chairman. What could he have done with this amount of time? He probably hadn't even managed to read through the Table of Contents for the a.s.sociation's more cla.s.sified information!

Chairman Freed held the same belief.

If only they knew that Greem had a potent Chip in his mind that excelled at data calculations and storage, they wouldn't be so relaxed now.

Greem silently communicated with the Chip as he rubbed his head and groaned in pain.

What the Chip had just connected to earlier was actually the mental world of Kerslin. The a.s.sociation had spent so much to awaken an entire castle into an independent consciousness. Naturally, they would want to strengthen it as much as possible so that it could serve as their hidden trump card.

If the castle were compared to an adept tower, then there was no doubt that Kerslin was the tower spirit.

Almost all the information and communications within the a.s.sociation were conducted through the ma.s.sive alchemical lifeform consciousness that was Kerslin. Thus, the Chip had begun hastily copying and downloading data and information to the limits of its authority the moment it entered this vast and boundless consciousness s.p.a.ce.

According to the Chip's calculations, it had only managed to download and copy 3.5% of all the information. It might sound like very little, but considering that this was the sum of all the information and knowledge that the Zhentarim a.s.sociation had gathered in the thousands of years since its establishment, 3.5% was already an insane number!

While Greem rubbed his head and feigned agony, Laurent looked up into the empty air and focused, as if he was listening to something.

He then turned and smiled at Greem.

"Follow me. Lord Freed wishes to see you!"

Greem's heart trembled. The pained expression on his face instantly disappeared, replaced with one of solemnity.

Fourth Grade adept. That was a Fourth Grade adept! Now, that Fourth Grade adept wanted to see him.

Even though Greem had already crossed swords with a Fourth Grade adept, he still felt fear every time he recalled that feeling of having his Spirit suppressed.

Perhaps sensing Greem's uneasiness, Adept Laurent consoled him, "Don't worry, the chairman won't be putting you on the spot. This was started by Kerslin, after all. The chairman won't vent his anger on you over this incident!"

Greem smiled without a word and started walking to the upper levels of the castle under Laurent's lead.

Having been distracted by the whole incident from earlier, Greem hadn't paid much attention to the internal design of the castle. Now that he had calmed down, he could take a better look. An unusual sense of familiarity mysteriously arose within him.

This familiar pa.s.sage, these familiar walls, these familiar stone doors…

"What does this place have to do with the Winds of Freedom?" Greem suddenly asked.

Laurent was still leading at the front. He chuckled and replied without turning back, "You finally realized! The Winds of Freedom is actually a Spiritual Illusion Realm created by Kerslin. Most of the buildings there are consciousness projections of Kerslin Castle. If you have been spending some time in the Winds of Freedom, you will naturally feel an odd sense of familiarity towards this castle!"

So that's what it was! Greem nodded his head silently.


Greem finally met the legendary a.s.sociation chairman in a secret room at one of the upper levels of the castle.

It was an old adept whose eyebrows, beard, and hair had all turned white. He wore a white adept's robe on his person, along with a pointed adept's hat. He had all sorts of magical rings on all ten of his fingers; powerful and radiant magical aura could be sensed all over his body where magical accessories could be worn.

Greem couldn't help but fall utterly speechless.

His Elementium Sight distinctly showed that the chairman had a total of twenty-seven concentrated sources of magical flux on his person. All of these sources of magic were magical items of Third Grade and above. With the number of magical weapons he had, the chairman would be able to wipe out most of his opponents just by releasing each of his magical weapons once.

Ignoring the individual prowess of the chairman, the value of these magical items alone was beyond the ability of an ordinary Fourth Grade adept.

An absolute tyc.o.o.n. The chairman was the most affluent man that Greem had ever seen!

Greem might have been slightly proud of his own magical equipment. However, compared to the chairman, he couldn't help but feel somewhat ashamed at the inferiority of his magic items.

"You are Greem?" Chairman Freed narrowed his eyes and took a good look at Greem. After a while, he finally nodded and said, "Not bad, not bad all. You are just as excellent as they make you out to be. If I'm not mistaken, your Spirit has reached 39 points, hasn't it?"

Greem knew that his spiritual condition could not be concealed. As such, he simply nodded and acknowledged it.

Laurent, who had accompanied him here, lifted his head in surprise. There was a trace of shock in his eyes when he looked at Greem.

The last time he had met Greem at Rhein City, Greem had been no more than a Second Grade junior. Yet, after just mere decades, he…he had exceeded Laurent himself. That...that was too unbelievable!

Thirty-nine points of Spirit. It had been four to five hundred years since Laurent had advanced to Third Grade, yet he had only managed to increase his Spirit to 37 points. That might sound close to peak Third Grade, but Laurent knew his own condition. The closer his Spirit got to the summit of Third Grade, the slower the progression of his meditation.

It was the main reason why Third Grade adepts start adventuring everywhere once they sensed their meditation becoming fruitless in improving their powers. They hoped to have their Spirit increase by the stimulation of danger and the risk of death, while also hoping to find unusual treasures or magical methods to aid the increase of their Spirit.

After all, meditating for decades while failing to sense any trace of progress was incredible torture to a person's spirit. No ordinary person would be able to bear it!

However, this legendary fire adept had somehow managed to cross the threshold of Second to Third Grade in less than a hundred years. Did he genuinely have such stunning talent and potential, or did he possess some sort of strange treasure?

Laurent's mind was disrupted and started to wander aimlessly. He tuned out of the conversation between Greem and the chairman entirely.

"My lord, I heard you wished to see me. Is there anything that you want to ask of me?" Greem hesitated for a moment but finally chose to be straightforward.

The two of them were on entirely different levels of existence. The manner and perspective by which they looked at issues were completely different from each other. As such, Greem didn't dare to play any tricks in front of this honorable and powerful Fourth Grade adept.

A strange smile appeared on Adept Freed's face when he heard Greem's question. He chuckled slightly and asked, "Have you ever heard of…origin substances?"