There was someone who spoke about middle realm once. Raye. I didn't meet him ever again. I didn't try to find out more about him. I don't want them to know about Kyo.
From Deia's story, I gather that the lower realm is a place for the ones with little or no magical abilities. Those who have some talents get the chance to go to the higher realm through this competition.
Inter-realm travel is only possible through Inter-realm Gates. These gates can be summoned by high-grade spells that are only taught in the middle and higher realm. In the lower realm, direct gates from one place to another are created only by rogue magic users or the officials from the higher realm for a special purpose. Asking a rogue magic user to make an inter-realm gate costs a fortune.
I can't summon a gate yet. Mogrok is good with explanations on how channelling ehr works, but he doesn't know much about the spells. Lideon Sepher can summon the gate. But, I don't want to ask him. It is risky. If he looks for my origin, I might get in trouble.
This is frustrating.
"There is a way." She hesitates a bit. "But, it is dangerous."
"Have you heard of the lost peaks?"
I have not. I have only been to four places - Milegia's capital, Prath's capital, Beggar city, and Qeshaya. I have no idea where these peaks are or how lost they are.
"I read it in a book." Deia brings out a notebook from her bag. She starts drawing on a blank page. I can't guess what she is drawing.
"After you cross the lost peaks, you will arrive at the beginning of ruins from the old world. These shattered ruins start from the end of the lower realm. When you walk deeper into the ruins, a small part of the cursed sea starts and ends on the edge of the middle realm. "
"Really?" I am surprised. Is it that easy? If it is, why are people still stuck here?
"But, it is dangerous." She finishes the sketch. I can see misty peaks of mountains and the ruins of a city. At the end of the ruins, there is a fearsome tsunami wave trying to devour it.
"The cursed sea is the sea of corrupted ehr. I heard that warped creatures wander the cursed sea. The cursed sea and the warped creatures are kept away from entering the lower realm by the barrier. If we go inside the cursed sea, we might meet a fate worse than death." Deia's voice is haunted. "I didn't see that future. Do we have to go?"
"You said that we will reach the higher realm." I raise my brow at her. "If we take this route, we might make it there."
"Yes, but..." She looks conflicted. "Kresi, it is dangerous. What if we are corrupted by that ehr? We will be hunted and killed by the nameless knights."
"That won't happen." Kyo is God. Mogrok is a forbidden creature. I am a harbinger. I am a bit worried about Deia, but she hasn't formed a contract yet. Her magic is sealed until she forms a contract with the spirit. She can't channel ehr until then. Then, she shouldn't get corrupted either.
"How do we get there?" I point at the lost peaks.
There are some hours left until dawn. The guards do not stop us. Many candidates who have lost in the previous rounds leave before the end of the competition. The gate is the same for the three other nations. It is the key that decides the destination. There is a gate- circle in the lost peaks from Deled. Her plan is to go to Deled first and take the gate to the lost peaks from there.
"Wait." I stop her from tossing her coin key on the circle. "We aren't going to Deled."
"What?" Her hand is hanged in the air with the coin key. "Why?"
I summon the universal key in my hand. It is the same gleaming beauty. I placed it in the gate circle and think of the middle realm first. It doesn't work for the gate that is just for trips in the same realm.
I start thinking of the lost peaks. It starts glowing blue. Deia's mouth forms a big 'O'. Kyo and Mogrok hold on to me. We are swallowed by the blue light.
When we emerge on the other side, the sky is painted orange. The Sun is rising. We are standing on a mountain cliff with a beautiful view of the mountain peaks with mist surrounding them. We have to cross these peaks to reach the end of the lower realm.
"How did you do that?" Deia's hand is still stuck in the air with the coin key.
"It is a rare treasure that I found somewhere." The universal key disappears from my hand. "It can take us anywhere as long as there is a gate."
"Really?" She stares at my empty hand. "Then, why did you let me steal this key from my sister?"
"It's important." Kyo and Mogrok are still sticking to me like magnets. I jerk them off. "I want people to think that I went back to Milegia and you went back to Deled until they find out the truth."
"Ah!" She puts the coin key in her pocket. "I will keep this key. Maybe we can sell this to someone."
Luckily, I didn't throw away mine. I can sell the Milegia coin key and earn some bucks.
"It's beautiful." Kyo is gazing at the mountain peaks.
I smile back at him. The sun rays touch his face when he turns his head and looks at me with his uplifted dark eyes. His red lips curl up. His sculpted features are captivating. I realize that my Kyo is a celestial beauty. He is going to attract attention a lot.
"Master, the flow of ehr is better here." Mogrok is standing on the edge of the cliff and smelling the wind. "After such a long time, I can absorb something worthy straight."
"The spirits get easily corrupted here." Deia glances at Mogrok worriedly. "Kresi, will we be alright?"
"Don't worry." I go to Mogrok. "Can you take your real form here?"
Mogrok eyes Deia and me. "Are you sure, Master? The Seer might not be able to handle it."
"We can't walk through these mountains." I don't have that much energy or patience to cross the mountains. There is Kyo with us. He is a child. "You take your full form and run of your thousand arms or feet, whatever they are. You will carry us."
"Master, I will do that. It's been a while since I stretched my arms."
"Kresi, what are you saying?" Deia steps back with a confused expression. I drag Kyo away from Mogrok. In the next moment, Mogrok starts to swell. He becomes gigantic with a thousand eyes and a thousand arms. He opens his mouth wide and roars. His loud heart trembling roar echoes in the mountains. He didn't have to do that though. Deia passes out from the shock.
"I told you." He looks at me.
"At least, she didn't scream." I glare at him. "You didn't have to roar like that."
"Master, that is my pent up frustration." Mogrok seizes Deia with one of his arms and pulls her up. He spreads his other hand on the ground and waits. Kyo and I climb up and sit on his hand. Mogrok is holding her upside down. Deia doesn't wake up throughout the way.
So far, it is good.
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