425 Death 1
"Worry not," Elder Den continued, "In consideration of the brave warriors who will be undergoing this final test, we will make sure to hold this as our last bracket. We only introduce it now to build up anticipation and allow those participating time to prepare."
By now, Queen Acacia was boiling in anger. She had previously seen Dyon's signal to allow him to handle it, but how could he possibly handle this one? They were essentially sending off her daughter to die!
The crowd though, could care less. This twist was something they found entertaining and Elder Den's explanation was good enough for them to accept. Although, in reality, the explanation meant little to them.
"Don't be mad," Madeleine said with a smile, looking up at Dyon, "We would have had to fight them anyway…"
Dyon took deep breaths, trying to calm his breathing.
Calling this a death bracket left the title with little exaggeration. The Cavositas had decided that to solve the imbalance of rankers per bracket, they would flood a single bracket with every remaining top 30 ranker – come the final round.
Essentially, of the remaining seven top 20 rankers, every one of them would participate. This of course excluded Iris, who had been defeated by Dyon in the first bracket, and the top 20 ranker that participated in the second bracket along with Akash and Zaltarish. In addition to that, Ri just so happened to conveniently be the final top 30 ranker left to complete the brackets, and as such, was also placed into this death bracket.
This shouldn't have been a big deal, in reality. This was because if there were so many powerful foes at the top, there shouldn't have been a need for them to fight each other. Just by leisurely challenging non-rankers, they could have made it into the final nine.
However, there-in lied a problem… This wouldn't have been a death bracket unless there was actual competition, so the Cavositas played a very underhanded trick. As an "apology" to those who were eliminated by Dyon, that should very well be in the top 100 finalists, they were allowing those who had failed in previous rounds to participate.
In the end, the death bracket was organized to place all rankers on the stage. Unlike in previous brackets, the stage rulers were put in place rather than volunteered for. But, maybe the worst change was that stage wielders would no longer have the right to priority challenges. Instead, as they again tried to mask as an "apology", only those not ruling a stage would be allowed to challenge – challenges that couldn't be ignored.
Many of the following bracket parameters were the same. However, instead of top 20 rankers getting 10pts, it was number 12 on the rankings that received 10pts. Then number 13 would receive 9pts. And, finally, Madeleine received 4pts as the 7th lowest ranking ranker, and Ri received 3pts as the 8th lowest ranking ranker. In this bracket, there were no other rankers unless they lost in other brackets and chose to participate. But, even then, they would only be given 1pt.
"Belmont, are you just going to allow this?" Kawa's bestial aura was already threatening to tear the skybox apart. If it wasn't for the fact she was restraining herself, everyone's attention would without a doubt be on her.
King Belmont sighed, "The worst part about being a king is that you never have as much power as you think you do. I'm a monarch, but if I unilaterally make decisions, it will shake the balance. We've spent so many years making the Ragnor think that we care very little for things outside of cultivation, it wouldn't be good to alert them of our power now.
The only reason I didn't stop Edrym from doing his little display when he arrived is because we're all aware that his cultivation has fallen to the first celestial level. That isn't something the Ragnor Patriarch would put in his eyes.
You should know that the Cavositas never act unless with the approval of the Ragnor. It's not just the Geb God Clan boy that's seeking to prove himself, they're only using that as an excuse to deal with Dyon. Like I said multiple times before, he's dangerous."
Lionel lightly snorted in the corner before going back to meditating. In his eyes, Madeleine should be his and his father was being much too lenient. Even knowing how dangerous the origins of this boy were, King Belmont was still willing to test him. That made Lionel angry despite the fact he didn't show it.
"Don't give me bullshit about how dangerous my son in law is." Kawa responded. She wanted to continue, but that was as much as she dared to say. Anymore and even she didn't know if she could hold off the action of the treaty.
To Kawa, much of the superstition around mortals was baseless drivel. In fact, there was a reason why even in all his anger, King Belmont, despite knowing the truth, didn't use Dyon's mortal status against him – although he did call him a commoner, or, more accurately, he agreed to Lionel calling him a commoner.
The truth was that Dyon wasn't the one who was dangerous. It was the bastard who sealed the mortals in the first place that was dangerous. Some so powerful that even celestial experts like them, and former dao formation experts like Elder Daiyu, could do nothing in the face of his treaty.
But, who cared how dangerous that entity was? Were they not trying to find a way to fight him right now? Did King Belmont not want Madeleine's virginity for his son as a way to bolster their clan's power to then fight this entity? Was their goal of sending their young talent to the Epistemic Tower not set in place in order to groom the future to be able to fight this entity?
So, what was this nonsense about how dangerous Dyon was or wasn't? With or without Dyon, they would be diving head first into the danger anyway!
King Belmont sighed, "I understand, Kawa."
He too understood this. This was why he had been willing to give Dyon a chance to prove himself – he didn't need Kawa to remind him.
"That said, we can't shelter them if we hope that they'll supersede our accomplishments. Look at Dyon, despite his boiling anger, he still has ever intention of letting the two of them fight.
The more I watch him, the more I understand how he grasped the hearts of my two god daughters.
He'll let his rage sit and simmer, but he also wants them to be great in their own right. Then, when the time is ripe, he'll unleash that rage, and set fire to his enemies."