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501 Brave New World

    Multidimensional travel was not as easy on someone's body as normal teleportation. The lack of time and space within the negative zone worked as an interference over the connection formed between the universes, impacting the body of the cultivators right after they would complete their instantaneous travel.

    This disturbance was something that affected those who were not used to multidimensional travel. These people would, just like Daniel had after walking through the portal, feel a sense of extreme dizziness take over their minds, and if unable to control their body, be forced to bend forward in order to empty the content of their stomach.

    Luckily, Daniel had a perfect control of his body, and while he couldn't avoid the dizziness, he was able to maintain a somewhat dignified posture, and avoid making a spectacle out of himself.

    When the dizziness started to dim, Daniel was finally able to separate the uneasiness he was feeling due to the multidimensional travel, from the noise produced by the hundreds of voices that could be heard around him. The origin of these voices only became clear after Daniel managed to focus his sight and look around.

    From what Daniel could make out of his surroundings, he could guess that he was in the middle of a city, and he was standing amongst a massive crowd of cultivators of age and power similar to his own. Some of these cultivators were accompanied by who appeared to be guards or relatives, who stood next to them with dignified mannerism.

    Within this crowd, many interacted with one another while exchanging polite smiles and greetings, while those who kept to themselves, were looking down the large road, where a column of their peers which marched in unison.

    What surprised Daniel the most of his surroundings, was not the fact that there were so many people at a relatively young age that possessed a cultivation at the godhood stage, but the fact that their escorts, either guards or relatives, emanated a power that Daniel couldn't understand. Somehow similar to a power that he had felt in the past, and yet different.

    While he couldn't make clarity of this power in his head, Daniel had no doubt that it was above his own, which meant that he had been sent in a universe where the standard of cultivation was above and beyond that of his own universe.

    Despite feeling relatively unsafe, Daniel was happy about his circumstances. His hope was to come to a universe that the blood cultivators would think twice before attacking, where he could gather information about the multiverse and its powers, and possibly, where he could blend in. Considering the infinite number of places where he could have appeared, this optimal outcome would have been considered a miracle, if not for his system's ability to impact his luck.

    Not sure of what to do, Daniel approached a group of young people at the mid godhood stage, and asked, "Excuse me, can you tell me why there are so many people here? Is it some sort of special occasion?"

    The group of cultivators looked at Daniel with confusion, then turned to look back at one another as if unsure of what Daniel was saying.

    Daniel had seen that kind of confused expression before, but before assuming, he decided to verify his theory by singling out a few of the many voices that came from every direction. What he heard was incomprehensible gibberish.

    "Damn it.." he muttered after confirming that he had been sent into a universe in which his language was not spoken.

    Luckily that was not a problem, as he could easily navigate through the memories of these people, and learn their language through their past experiences, so instead of wasting anymore time with these cultivators, he gave an apologetic and awkward nod of his head, and walked away from them.

    Left with no other choice, Daniel began to search the minds of the cultivators around them, but before he could successfully read the memories of a single person, he discovered that the mind of every individual within the crowd was impossible to read. That was the case not because of a higher level of mental power, but instead, because they were likely in possession of artifacts that protected their minds.

    Slightly annoyed, Daniel made a second attempt by focusing on the city's weak inhabitants that could be seen walking through the crowd, while desperately trying not to offend anybody. He then pretended to follow the marching group down the large street while trying to pick up bits and pieces of the language.

    After about thirty minutes, the motion of the crowd came to an end.

    Daniel stopped what he was doing to check why the others had stopped, and when he opened his eyes, he saw in the distance a flight of pearly-white stairs as wide as the road which the crowd had walked so far, and that reached beyond the clouds.

    While Daniel could not feel or see where these stairs led, at only a few steps above the ground, he could see a young woman. She seemed to be trying her best to go up the steps, but for some reason, her body was shaking, and she was unable to move even an inch further from her current position. After no more than thirty seconds, she finally collapsed to the power against which she was struggling, and she fell down the side of the flight of steps unconscious.

    After her, a second young woman began to go up the stairs, showing the same difficulty in proceeding that her predecessor had had, but after managing to climb three steps higher.

    Daniel let out an annoyed sigh. He knew that he had stumbled into some sort of test, and to make things worse, it appeared that it would take a very long time for his turn to arrive, so, that detail in mind, he decided to relieve his boredom by walking to the side of the road, where the side of the road opened into a large square.

    In this square was a newly built stage surrounded by hundreds of curious cultivators, and over it, were two people.

    It only took a moment for Daniel to enter the mind of one of the city's inhabitants, and discover that the stage he was facing was specially built for these visiting cultivators, and its purpose was for them to exchange moves while waiting for their turn to take the test, or to solve old grievances.

    From a simple look, Daniel could guess that the fight that was taking place on stage was of the earlier kind, as the two warriors seemed to be respectful of each other's skills, and their spirits did not release any form of killing intent .. but what surprised him the most, was the fact that these two warriors were showing off the full power of two cultivators at the early godhood stage without holding back.

    Theoretically the power of each of these attacks should have disintegrated a planet, but aside from a particularly spectacular show of light, no power left the edges of the stage. The aftermath of these attacks was stopped by a barrier that even Daniel doubted he would be able to pierce through with sheer strength. A barrier that possessed the power to stop anyone at the godhood stage, or below.

    The fight was between two fierce looking young men. One tall, muscular, and dressed like a mountain bandit, and one scrawny, and dressed as a scholar. Each of them relied on their weapons to try and showcase their ability and superiority, but in the end, with a swipe of his sword that could have split a star into two, the cultivator dressed in bandit clothes was able to incapacitate the noble-looking cultivator, and throw him off the stage.

    The crowd roared in support of the winner as he walked down the stage, and allowed for another couple to walk in. However, contrary to the first one, this match appeared of the second, more entertaining kind.

    The first person to walk on stage was a young looking woman dressed in light green embroidered in gold. From her arrogant behaviour and aloof expression, one would be able to guess that she was of royal descent, and that she believed to be above everybody else.

    Just outside of the other side of the stage, were two tall men clad in identical shiny armors. On their chest plates an insignia similar to that sewn on the woman's green dress in gold. The two were carrying an injured red headed woman. As they got to the edge of the stage, they roughly threw her on as if she wasn't a human, but a bag of trash.

    As soon as the second young woman entered the stage, the one dressed in royal clothes spoke a few incomprehensible words filled with contempt, and summoned a leathery spiked whip. She then began to crack it at the second young woman, who took the beating without fighting back, or even protecting herself.

    This punishment was hard to watch for most people in the crowd, but not for Daniel, who appeared to be focused on what was happening on stage.

    In reality, what Daniel was observing, were the numbers present over the heads of the two young women. One barely positive, and one extremely negative.

    The arrogant woman was the one in possession of a negative karma, which became worse and worse every time her whip would strike the defenseless body of the second young woman, showing that she was doing something that could be considered evil. On the other hand, the second young woman was in possession of a relatively neutral karma, which likely meant that she had spent most of her life cultivating, and not worrying about helping, or harming others.

    As the first young woman proceeded to strike the second one with a flurry of blows, she kept letting out a few words filled with disdain and hate. Daniel could still not understand these lines, but he could make out a few words every now and then, which were on the line of "filthy half-blood," "slave," and so on.

    The more attacks landed on the defenseless young woman, the more ecstatic the first one appeared to be. However, while virtually every other cultivator showed a lack of interest for what was happening, that was not the same for Daniel, who was getting more and more irritated by the moment.

    After a hundred more blows carefully aimed at preventing the second young woman from crawling off stage, Daniel finally lost his patience, and he started to walk towards the stage.

    As he reached the steps of the stage, the surrounding cultivators turned to look at him with confusion. It was common knowledge that a barrier would form on the edge of the stage the moment two cultivators would step foot on it, and yet Daniel kept walking.

    What was odd about his behaviour was not that he was walking on stage, as that was not a rare occasion .. After all, it wasn't rare that the relatives of defeated cultivators would try to jump on stage to support their dear ones, but they would always be striked down by the barrier.

    Daniel, on the other hand, showed no urgency, almost as if his intent for walking on stage was beyond that of helping the young woman that was being tortured.

    Finally able to see a real show, the surrounding cultivators turned to look at Daniel with anticipation, but the moment his body came in contact with it, the barrier made way for him, and he simply walked through it.

    The woman dressed in regal clothes immediately stopped inflicting the punishment onto the second young woman, and turned to look at Daniel with hostility. However, to Daniel's surprise, there was no shock in her eyes, only mild surprise and a hint of envy. This mild reaction to his use of the essence of space time showed that, while extremely rare, Daniel was not the only cultivator in possession of a basic comprehension of spacetime.

    Irritated by Daniel's interruption, the arrogant young woman cursed at him with her own language, but she was ignored. Instead of paying mind to her, Daniel walked up to the curled up body of the second young woman, and stopped only half a meter in front of her.

    The surrounding cultivators started to feel curious about Daniel's intentions, but right when they started to wonder whether he wanted to help the injured young woman or not, Daniel put his weight onto his left foot, raised his right heel lightly, and kicked the injured young woman hard enough for her to be thrown off stage.

    He then turned around, and while looking at the arrogant woman with cold eyes and a colder expression, he pointed outside of the stage with his finger, and tapped the air twice. There was no need for spoken words for the observers to understand what he meant, and that, was for the arrogant woman to "get off stage, now." In his behaviour was no indication of the fact that this could have been a request instead of a demand.
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