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100 A Guardian Angel

    Four months after imprisonment.

    Daniel was still chained to the cold and moist wall of his prison cell.

    After four months, his vision had perfectly adapted to its darkness, and thanks to that, he had started to comprehend certain concepts of dark essence itself.

    Concepts like depth of obscurity, which allowed one to create a darkness dense enough to overpower some forms of light, and absorption, which was created from the mixing of obscurity, gravity, and attraction.

    This combination allowed to simulate the workings of a black hole, creating a darkness endowed with a gravitational pull powerful enough to absorb even light itself.

    The only things that had helped him avoid losing his mind during the past four months, were the talks he had had with the people chained in the near cells, the sporadic interrogations, and finally, his occasional talks with his own cellmate.. Sewah.

    Aside from waiting, Daniel had spent most of his time following his friend's actions from the system's group window.

    ____________________________

    Group of the Karmic System's Wielder.

    Name: Group of the Karmic System's Wielder (Provisory)

    Number of members (Details): 14

    Overall Karma: 345,263

    Karmic effects:

    Time is Precious Lv.2 (Group)

    ____________________________

    Shared Karmic effects (Details)

    Reputation (Details)

    ____________________________

    At some point during the four months, the number of members had increased from eleven to fourteen.

    From the details of the number of members, Daniel could see that the three newcomers were in fact Edmund, Emelnie, and their daughter Alesia.

    It was impossible for young people like Heimart and the rest to notice, but the five percent increase in progression hadn't escaped Emelnie and Edmund's expert eyes. After all, they were both early ninth rank cultivators.

    In the past four months, his friends hadn't doubted his words. In fact, they had kept themself quite busy.

    Daniel wasn't aware of this, but wherever they went, they would help people in need, accept mission with low pay, and even give support to small cities during raids.

    After only three months, they had already obtained enough overall karma to allow Daniel to upgrade Time is Precious to the second level, and now, they were close to another upgrade.

    Regarding Daniel's escape plan progression, this day was a special one. For the first time, he had heard about two different developments that he believed were crucial in ultimately leading him to his freedom.

    The first of these developments had reached his ear during the change of the guard.

    Daniel had gotten used to the warders habits. After four months of observation, he had learned that the warder's shift lasted for twelve straight hours. From five in the morning, to five in the evening.

    Daniel wasn't exactly sure if it was currently morning or evening, but earlier that day, during the change of the guard, he heard a well rested guard approach the tired one, and say "Your turn is over, go home."

    To that, the tired guard had responded: "Finally.. I'm tired of this **ty job.. I can't believe I still have to do it for two more years.."

    The second development Daniel had heard, was during the second daily change of the guard.

    The unhappy warder approached the one that had previously relieved him of his duty, and said to him "You have no idea what happened.. The imperial advisor announced something crazy. The youngest prince has entered the fourth stage of cultivation.."

    "That's not that impressive.. With all the resources the imperial family has, there is no wonder he managed to achieve that.." Said the first guard with a matter-of-fact tone.

    "In both paths of cultivation!! It was said that he even created an unnatural event when he entered the second stage.. It's crazy." Responded the second guard with an enthusiastic tone.

    The two went on talking for a few more minutes, before quietening down.

    -----

    One year after imprisonment.

    Daniel was now seventeen. He had become once again very thin, just like when he was three years ago. His once refined clothes were now tight, dirty, and ruined.

    "Kid, how is your room service today?" Said the voice of a man that came from further into the dungeon.

    Daniel smirked after hearing the man's words, then said "I got a ninth rank dragon stake.. With side dish of mystical herbs.. But I had them take it back because the stake was still raw.. What about you?"

    "Hehehe.. I've requested a conjugal visit with our friendly warder's wife.. She'll be here soon.. Hope my breath doesn't smell too bad.. Hehe" Responded the middle aged man while barely holding his laughter.

    The man was held in the cell placed further down the corridor, and was someone Daniel had started to talk to a few months back. He had been imprisoned four months earlier, after being accused of being a spy sent by another country to create internal conflict within the Krehan empire.

    Aside from the fact that he had mentioned being thirty years old, and that pulling words out of him was impossible, Daniel knew nothing else about him.

    Daniel had heard more than once that spies had been sent to pry on the Krehan empire's secrets, especially after he had been imprisoned.

    Claiming the honor of having found the method of double cultivation, the Krehan empire had put his own empire under the spotlight.

    That had caused a spike in the number of spies that were sent to infiltrate from all the surrounding countries. Their objective was, of course, to obtain the method of cultivating both paths at the same time.

    Daniel's group hadn't stopped their streak of good actions, and whenever he checked the system's group window, he felt prouder than the previous time.

    ____________________________

    Group of the Karmic System's Wielder.

    Name: Group of the Karmic System's Wielder (Provisory)

    Number of members (Details): 97

    Overall Karma: 1,563,732

    Karmic effects:

    Time is Precious Lv.5 (Group)

    Karmic Aura Lv.5

    ____________________________

    Shared Karmic effects (Details)

    Reputation (Details)

    ____________________________

    A more in-depth method Daniel had used to keep track of his group, was checking the increases in their reputation.

    From time to time, he would think about the details of the reputation menu and a second window would appear in his mind.

    ____________________________

    Reputation of: Group of the Karmic System's Wielder (Provisory)

    Kingdom of Aswa: Positive reputation 45% (Details)

    Kingdom of Brietan: Positive reputation 42% (Details)

    Kaprein Empire: Positive reputation 22% (Details)

    Kingdom of Daspua: Positive reputation 10% (Details)

    Kingdom of Oblon: Positive reputation 8% (Details)

    Kingdom of Griuca: Positive reputation 5% (Details)

    Chorus Empire: Positive reputation 3% (Details)

    Sniolia Empire: Negative reputation 3% (Details)

    ____________________________

    Daniel had once tried to go further into the details of the singular countries, but all that was showed, was a list of powers with whom the group had gained a sort of reputation.

    -----

    One year and a half after imprisonment.

    The previously empty dungeon had now been filled with people suspected of being spies.

    More than a year had passed since the youngest prince had entered the fourth stage of cultivation in both paths, and yet, the imperial family had decided not to divulge Daniel's method of dual cultivation yet.

    Daniel's hair were now long and ruffled, and draped down the sides of his face like black tents. The constant wearing of his clothes, paired with the small size, had forced the guards to give him some tatters to cover himself with.

    On the positive side, he was much less lonely, as the many voices of the other prisoners resounded day and night.

    "What?! You are telling me that you aren't the one that was here first?" Asked someone with a shocked tone.

    "I'm telling you.. The first one was the kid." Responded the man with whom Daniel had become friend with in the past ten months. His name was Roland.

    "You've got to be kidding. Hey Dan.. is that true?" Asked the first man to Daniel.

    "Yeah.." responded Daniel plainly.

    "And what did you do?.. Were you some sort of teen spy?" Asked the man jokingly, while still finding hard to believe that Daniel had been the first one to be imprisoned in this section of the dungeon.

    Daniel smirked, then said "I've invented the dual cultivation we kept hearing from the guards.. I thought they would have killed me by now.. But it seems that I'll be here for a long while."

    This had been the first time someone had asked him for what reason he had been imprisoned. The reason why he decided not to lie, was because there was no reason to. After all, the method was out now.

    "HAHAHAHAH.."

    "Ahahaha!"

    "Bahahahah"

    The other prisoners suddenly burst out laughing.

    "Of course.. Know what I'm here for? I'm actually the real emperor.. Been framed by my twin brother that stole my throne!" Said one of the prisoners sarcastically.

    "Oh please.. We can tell from your voice that you're uglier than the opened mouth of a ninth rank beast.. AHAHA" Said another prisoner.

    Daniel ignored their reaction.

    What he didn't know, was that Roland had his face contorted in shock. He had known him for a long while now, and he had always been able to tell when Daniel was joking and when he was serious. From his experience, he seemed to be speaking honestly.

    Ignorant to Roland's reaction, Daniel checked the state of his group by opening the system's group window once again.

    ____________________________

    Group of the Karmic System's Wielder.

    Name: Group of the Karmic System's Wielder (Provisory)

    Number of members (Details): 625

    Overall Karma: 463,732

    Karmic effects:

    Karma X Luck (Group)

    Karmic Aura Lv.11

    Time is Precious Lv.16 (Group)

    ____________________________

    Shared Karmic effects (Details)

    Reputation (Details)

    ____________________________

    Thanks to the increase in members, the group had managed to gain karma points faster every day. Luckily, the karmic effects weren't like the upgrades of his system, and didn't increase in price for each level.

    Each level of 'Time is Precious (Group)' would cost 500,000 karma points, while every upgrade of 'Karmic Aura', would always cost 100,000 karma points.

    At this point, after an increase of eleven percent of their battle prowess, and eighty percent of their progress speed.. The members of the group had accepted Daniel's words as a certain truth.

    After all, their already high talent had basically almost doubled.

    From the conversation between guards, Daniel had learned that there had been some revolts in a few of the empire's cities. These revolts had either been caused by spies, or by nobles that demanded that the imperial family undisclosed the details on how to cultivate both paths of cultivation at the same time.

    These revolutionary groups had been aided and supported by the surrounding countries, which lended weapons and manpower to them.

    -----

    Two years and two months after imprisonment.

    Daniel was now past the eighteen years of age, and he had already been in prison for more than two years.. Only a little less than five months were left before Daniel's chance of escaping the dungeon, so he couldn't help but feel ecstatic.

    In the past few days, he had become much more chatty with the prison mates. He was in the section reserved for spies, so, at the very least he knew that he hadn't become friends with killers and rapists.

    The ultimate goal of these spies, was to gather informations, turn key characters into assets, and steal the emperor's secrets. They might have hurt somebody while pursuing those objectives, but it was highly unlikely that they had gotten anyone killed.

    "Guys.. let's say we were to leave half a year from now.. What would you do?" Asked Daniel to the various people imprisoned within the cells in his section.

    The dungeon quietened for a few moments.

    "Take a bath.."

    "Take a bath with a woman.."

    "Take a bath with two women.."

    "I'm serious." Said Daniel, while suddenly interrupting the series of sarcastic responses.

    One of them sighed audibly, then responded "I don't know.. I'm not going to leave in six months, so I don't want to talk about it.."

    The man's response pretty much ended the conversation for the rest of them, so instead of pushing it, Daniel went back to check on his group's situation.

    After the window opened, what he saw, shocked him deeply.

    ____________________________

    Group of the Karmic System's Wielder.

    Name: Group of the Karmic System's Wielder (Provisory)

    Number of members (Details): 1496

    Overall Karma: 4,846,198

    Karmic effects:

    Karma X Luck (Group)

    Karmic Aura Lv.35

    Time is Precious Lv.20 (Group)

    ____________________________

    Shared Karmic effects (Details)

    Reputation (Details)

    ____________________________
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