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Chapter: 318


Three months had passed since William had entered the trial. After many gruesome battles, he finally arrived at the eleventh trial that would allow him to face the end of his journey. William took a deep breath as he stepped into the desert where he would face his next enemy.

"Oink! Hahaha, Good job in getting this far, Half-Elf," a Pig Demon stood holding a nine-toothed rake in both hands. "Oink! It's quite unfortunate that I, the Great Zhu, will not allow you to pass!"

A strong gust of wind blew and the desert sands warped into a tornado. Soon, the image of a terrifying sand demon wearing a brown robe appeared beside the Pig Demon who named himself Zhu. 

"My name is Sha, and I am the Guardian of this desert," Sha declared as he narrowed his eyes. "It has been many years since I was trapped in this Domain. This is the first time I've seen a Half-Elf venture into this land. I wonder what you will taste like?"

(A/N: There are many types of Beastkin in this story and I will be calling them based on their forms. For example, Dogkin, Catkin, and Foxkin.)

William frowned. Right now, he couldn't use the full function of his system because only a part of his soul had been taken to the temple. Even so, after facing many strong beasts, on different occasions, he was able to assess the ranking of the two enemies in front of him and it made him clench his fist in frustration.

'Both of them are in the initial stages of the Centennial Rank,' William thought. 'If it was one on one, I might be able to win by luck. But against two… it's impossible.'

William knew his abilities very well. Currently, the weapon in his hand was a replica of his original wooden staff. Although it was sturdy, he knew that it wouldn't be enough to defeat the two Centennial Beasts in front of him.

While William was thinking of ways to overcome this hurdle, the Demonic Pig in front of him pointed its rake in his direction.

"Oink! Too bad, Half-Elf," Zhu said with a sneer. "Your journey ends here. We will be generous and give you two choices. The first choice is to accept a swift and painless death. The second one is to suffer a slow and torturous death. Oink! Pick one!"

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Sha, the Sand Demon, crossed his arms over his chest. The sands behind William rose towards the sky forming an impassable wall. Clearly, he had no intention of letting their prey escape from their grasp.

"Speak, Half-Elf," Sha stated. "What do you choose?"

William unsummoned his staff and placed both of his hands inside his pockets.

"I choose… you!" William shouted as he took out the gifts that Sancus gave him in exchange for accepting his proposal. "Go! Pocket Cubes!"

William threw two golden cubes at the two Centennial Beasts. Which made Zhu snort at him in disdain. However, Sha felt that the golden cubes weren't normal so he decided to play it safe.

Zhu raised his nine-toothed rake in an attempt to swat it. However, the moment the rake came in contact with the cube, the golden cube expanded into a six-meter wide cube that engulfed the Demonic Pig whole.

Finding himself trapped within the cube, Zhu made a fuss and pummeled the cubes' walls with his nine-toothed rake.

"How dare you try to capture this Great Zhu!" Zhu roared as he brandished his weapon left and right in an attempt to break the Golden Cube that was shrinking ever-so-slowly. No matter how much force he put in his blows, the cube didn't break which made the Demonic Pig very anxious.

The other golden cube hit Sha squarely in his chest and expanded to capture him too. Unlike Zhu, the Sand demon was caught instantly, or so William thought.

Due to his senses being honed through his training and life and death battles, William jumped backwards, just in time to dodge a Sand Spike that formed under his feet. The Golden Cube that captured Sha, spit out a sand clone that the Sand Demon had used to prevent himself from getting captured.

"Oink! Save me! Sha!" Zhu pleaded for his friend's help.

The Sand Demon threw a punch at the golden cube from afar and a Giant Sand Fist formed to answer his call. When the Sand Fist was about to hit the cube, a barrier appeared and repelled the attack from connecting.

"Nooooooo!" Zhu screamed as the golden cube shrank completely. It then flew towards William who held it in his hand.

"You bastard!" Sha roared and summoned a tidal wave made of sand with the intention to crush the boy who dared to capture his friend. 

Zhu and him were once Immortal Heroes from the Heavens. But, due to an accident that caused great damage to the Divine Realm, both of them were punished and stripped of their immortality, before being exiled to this domain. 

They were given the duty of gatekeepers. Their role was to prevent anyone from reaching Heaven's Gate. This punishment of theirs was set to last for ten-thousand years. After their sentence had been carried out, they would be given the opportunity to enter the Cycle of Reincarnation and have their memories erased, to live as mortals once again. 

William didn't hesitate and threw the Pocket Cube towards the Sand Wave that was about to turn him into a pancake. The cube glowed and released Zhu from within.

"Go! Break it apart!" William ordered.

Zhu roared as he decisively swung his rake towards the wall of sand in front of him, dispersing it completely. 

"Zhu! What are you doing?!" Sha yelled as he reappeared a hundred meters away from his friend.

"Sha! I can't disobey him!" Zhu explained. 

Sha glared at the red-headed boy in the distance and shouted. "You enslaved him?! How dare you!"

William didn't bat an eye and glared back at his opponent. "If you promise to help me reach Heaven's Gate, I promise that I will release your friend."

"Don't listen to him!" Zhu shouted. "Just kill me and kill him afterwards!"

Sha quieted down as he thought of a way to rescue his friend. Their duty was to prevent anyone from reaching Heaven's Gate. He couldn't possibly break the oath he had made to the Jade Emperor.

He had already broken his oath once, he couldn't possibly break it again.

In the Heavens above, the Heroic Spirits looked at this scene with various expressions. Some of them were Zhu's and Sha's colleagues and knew them well. These Heros sighed as they watched their former comrades, who had lost most of their powers and Divinity after being banished from the Heavens. 

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Others, who were their enemies, laughed out loud after seeing their current plight. For them, watching Zhu and Sha suffer was pure entertainment. Some of them were even itching to bestow their powers to[on] the boy in order for the two Ex-Heroes to suffer in his hands.

"I can't break my oath twice," Sha said in a firm manner. "I'm sorry, Zhu."

"I know, Brother," Zhu replied with a sad smile. "Please, kill him for me."

Before Sha could even stop him, Zhu raised the rake in his hand to slam it into his own face. He planned to behead himself in order to prevent himself from hurting his brother. 

"Stop. I forbid you from killing yourself." 

The rake stopped mere inches from Zhu's head. No matter how much he tried to force his hand to move, the rake remained in place. 

When William accepted the Golden Cubes from Sancus, he thought that they were just meant to capture beasts. However, the Golden Cubes were not ordinary "cages" that trapped beasts. They could also trap demonic creatures!

It was imbued with a very powerful contract that would force any Demon or Beast that William captured to obey his every command. 

Naturally, in order for this ability to not be abused, Sancus gave it a limitation. Any Beast or Demon that William captured would obey his command for five years. When the five years was over, the cube would automatically release the captured beasts and give them back their freedom.

William was not a fan of slavery, so he felt bad about using this method to make Zhu obey his orders. However, he didn't have the leisure to be merciful. If he didn't capture Zhu, he would not stand a chance against these Centennial Ranked Warriors who used to be Immortal Heroes.

Unable to kill himself, Zhu squealed in frustration. His squeals reverberated across the desert which made the Heroic Spirits who didn't like him laugh in the heavens.

Among the countless stars in the sky, a King looked down at the two while holding a wine cup in his hands. The wine remained perfectly still in the cup. His eyes gazed upon the two warriors before shifting towards William who was looking at Sha with a serious expression.

(A/N: The wine cup is called Ochoko or Choko. Ask Google Senpai what they look like). 

"You don't want to break your oath, but I want to reach Heaven's Gate," William said softly. "Since both of us will not change our minds, how about we compromise?"

Zhu returned to the golden cube and William returned it to his pocket. 

"Let's fight, one on one. We will only use our physical skills, and abilities. We will not use any spells or magic power. " William proposed. "If you win, I promise that I will release Zhu. However, If I win, you will allow me to pass."

Sha summoned his Crescent Moon Spade and pointed its tip at William.

"I accept your challenge, Half-Elf," Sha agreed. "Let the Gods and the Heroes in the Heavens serve as my witness. I, Sha, will fight with my honor and dignity on the line. I will honor my oath as the wager of this battle!"

Roars of cheers and approval resounded from the sky as the Immortal Heroes acknowledged Sha's vow.

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William took a deep breath as he summoned the wooden staff in his hand. He felt admiration for the Sand Demon's character, but he had no intention of losing.

The two fighters faced off against each other with the Gods and Heroes as their witnesses. Even the Jade Emperor, who had exiled Zhu and Sha from the Domain of Heaven, observed the battle from his throne. 

His aged-old eyes looked at the Sand Demon who had once served under him. He then glanced towards the distance to look at the King who was still holding the wine cup in his hand. 

The King hadn't taken a sip from the wine cup ever since William appeared at the Eleventh Trial. Sensing the Jade Emperor's gaze, the King gave him a brief nod before looking back at the battle that was about to take place.

David watched from his palace with a smile on his face. Although the chances of William winning this fight were slim, he believed that his protege would still manage to… break all the walls that stood before him.

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