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Chapter 889 The Code Of Conduct
Maximus Gladius, the Hero of Nature, revealed his dark past and the reason for his modus operandi, despite being ostracized by the entire Nadur Empire. As he spoke, Kahn was swayed by Maximus's honorable conviction to protect the weak, even if his work went unappreciated.
'Man conquers the world by conquering himself.'
The quote he read in the past life seemed to embody Maximus perfectly.
The Hero of Nature, Maximus Gladius, did not care what the world thought of him. He had faced rejection and scorn from those around him, but his moral compa.s.s remained unshakable.
'External things are not the problem. It's your a.s.sessment of them. Which you can erase right now.'
A philosophy Kahn had forgotten to apply recently in his new life. This outlook on the way of life carried great wisdom that many could not understand.
Yet, Maximus seemed to be living by it without even knowing.
"I guess my preconceived a.s.sumptions about you were wrong. I apologize if I have offended you in any way, Lord Hero." spoke Atreus, his tone filled with genuine respect.
And soon, he extended his arm to shake hands with the Hero of Nature.
[System, Scan him.] he commanded.
The system soon reported in his mind, giving him Maximus' sats.
Just a dozen seconds later, Kahn was left asunder.
Because although Maximus was only 30 levels stranger than him, all of his stats were much higher than they should be.
Why did it garner such a reaction?
Kahn was significantly stronger than any other saint, and even his base stats were comparable to those of a saint 2 ranks above him. This was due to the blessing called the War Deity Body, which also made him five times stronger than other saints of the same rank.
Despite having access to perks like Rathnaar's core and the Chamber of Exaltation, Maximus surpa.s.sed Kahn in terms of strength. The former did not even have the same blessings as Kahn, but his sheer power dwarfed the latter.
Soon, Kahn with his curiosity now peaked to the brim, asked respectfully…
"May I ask why you didn't use your Divine Weapon?
The battle could have ended much faster with that."
"Do you have any information regarding my Divine Weapon?" asked Maximus.
Atreus only shook his head.
To ensure the safety of the Hero and protect their secrets, the Divine Abilities and Divine Weapons of past and present chosen heroes were never revealed to the general public.
Throughout history, even members of the Hero's Party had sometimes never laid eyes on them during their lifetimes.
"If I used my divine weapon, many soldiers would've died.
And the nearby 100 kilometers of the region would've been turned into an infertile land and dead sea." revealed the Hero of Nature without exposing the hidden secrets.
"People in these lands would have no means to make a living if I did that.
All of them will have no forests, water, natural resources, agriculture and source of food." he said in a cautious tone.
"It would also keep destroying additional terrain with each pa.s.sing day and everyone living here would be forced to immigrate. Their lives would be permanently destroyed.
As someone who had experienced the consequences of war and immigration since childhood…
I know how big of a suffering it is. That's why I couldn't use it." he explained in a serious tone.
Upon hearing the reasoning behind Maximus' actions, Kahn's opinion of him was greatly elevated.
In contrast to Conan, whose actions caused the deaths of millions of people, Maximus, as the Hero of Nature, not only placed the lives of innocent citizens above his own but also took into account the potential consequences of using his powers on their lives for future generations.
Maximus was both thoughtful and considerate in his actions, and was willing to risk his life to preserve the well-being of the common people. This was a quality that powerful saints in the world often disregarded with ease, something that Kahn himself had experienced on numerous occasions.
Kahn himself had not always been so considerate in the battles he had fought thus far. As he pondered and a.s.sessed Maximus as a person, Kahn ultimately arrived at a conclusion...
Maximus Gladius, the Hero of Nature, was a true warrior and "HERO" by definition.
Maximus did not earn this t.i.tle simply because he was chosen by a G.o.d; rather, it was due to the way he chose to uphold his own sense of morality and ethics. In contrast to many other powerful individuals who used their abilities solely for personal gain.
He carried himself with a code of conduct similar to the quote that said…
'Even if the whole world is telling you to move, it is your duty to plant yourself like a tree, look them in the eye, and say…'
'No, you move'.
Minutes pa.s.sed after their conversation ended, as both Maximus and Kahn were depleted of their world energy and in need of time to recuperate.
Kahn's use of the Legendary rank Spirit Solitary formation had drained 99% of his entire world energy, leaving him with nothing left to spare. Furthermore, his reserves of s.p.a.ce force and cosmic aether had been completely depleted, as he had utilized them in his battle against Cherufe, attacking with his powerful Dimensional Judgment skill.
Maximus, too, had exhausted his Divine Ability during the entirety of the battle, and was now on the brink of falling from the sky they hovered in.
The surrounding 20 kilometers of s.p.a.ce shook and the deep sea became terrifyingly erratic.
As if the G.o.ddess of Luck had a grudge against them, the fight was far from over.
Suddenly, from a vast whirlpool in the sea, reminiscent of the Bermuda Triangle, a creature emerged, its anger and killing intent directed towards both Maximus and Atreus.
The creature was ma.s.sive, and its sheer size caused the water around it to churn and boil.
"Who killed my, the great Varuna's prey?!" a terrifying and domineering voice resounded in the 25 kilometers region.
"I think I understand why the Cherufe was so restless and entered this border of the empire." spoke Maximus, barely withstanding the insurmountable pressure even though they stood so far.
Now Maximus understood why Cherufe was so adamant on running away and why it said that they had no idea what was coming.
The sea creature that had emerged from the whirlpool was unlike anything Maximus and Atreus had ever seen.
It had four wings that spanned two kilometers in width individually, and its ma.s.sive maw was filled with thousands of razor-sharp teeth, like that of a ferocious predator.
As the creature revealed its entire form, the yellow horns on its head emitted an aura of absolute tyranny and respect, signaling to the two heroes that they were facing a powerful adversary.
l.u.s.trous dark green scales shone brightly as light danced off of its skin. Long and pointy fins on its back gave it a majestic appearance.
Despite being 5th stage saints, Maximus and Atreus couldn't comprehend the creature's full size. Its body was so enormous that they couldn't even see the end of it.
"Four Wings… f.u.c.k!" spoke Atreus, looking at a certain being inside the true dimension.
"It's a freaking Superior Dragon!" he bellowed in rage, cursing his luck.
Vildred, who was just about to inform Kahn as soon as he detected it, halted his words.
[Other than running away… there is no way for the both of you to keep your lives.] spoke Rathnar, the peak saint.
Why did even the man who once reached the pinnacle of strength in the world advise Kahn to run away?
Because the strength of this Superior Dragon based on its aura was comparable to that of a freaking Peak 7th stage saint!
And given its species as a superior Dragon, it was already on par with a beginner 8th stage saint at least.
[Kahn… This is not a Superior Dragon born in my time as the emperor.
It shouldn't even be here in the first place as per the laws of the Dragon Empire.] informed Vildred.
[Even with my restricted rank and strength because of our contract… I can fight it.] revealed the former Dragon Emperor.
Yet the good news didn't last long.
[But I will need to transform into my true Royal Dragon form.
And once I do that, your secret might be brought to questioning since all the empires have ways to track the existence of Royal Dragons once we fight in a foreign territory.
When they find me, they will find you as well.
The fight itself could destroy hundreds of kilometers even with my skills and cla.s.s as a sage.
Those millions of people who previously escaped would get caught in the crossfire even if I tried to contain the battlefield.] spoke Vildred, giving a harsh reminder of the bitter truth in front of their eyes.
[So make a choice… Would you let those people die or choose to risk your life?] he presented Kahn with limited options.
Ever since Kahn arrived in this world, Self-preservationn was always the main driving factor behind all his decisions since the entire world was hunting him due to his ident.i.ty as Hero of Darkness.
Now, faced with the choice to make a decision for his own life and the millions of people who would die once they failed to stop this Superior Dragon… What choice would he make?
Will he choose to be a Hero like Maximus or be a heartless selfish b.a.s.t.a.r.d who thought about nothing but himself?
'No one is Neutral. Everyone is a Hypocrite.'
Those were the words cited by Kahn just a few days ago.
And now, he had to make a life-changing decision. One that would come with very dire consequences regardless of which choice he made.
But right when everything was running in turmoil… an unknown voice resounded in Kahn and Maximus' mind.
[You both have done well, children. Now let me handle things.]
As if an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object, someone with great strength had arrived.
Strong gusts of wind shook the clouds in the sky as a powerhouse of the Beast Empire made an appearance.
Both Kahn and Maximus were shaken to their cores after seeing this ent.i.ty.
It was the one being who was both revered and also feared to the point that one couldn't help but bow in front of. It was…