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Reborn as a Demonic Tree – Chapter 80: Mysterious Maple Bahasa Indonesia

On the dawn of the seventh day since Ashlock had deployed the {Mystic Realm} fog, he felt something other than random sensations of environments through his roots.

Ashlock felt hands clasp around two of his roots, and he felt tiny paws around another. Ashlock wasn’t sure how to proceed, but he felt one of the pairs of hands tug on his root with what he interpreted as desperation and urgency.

“I hope this is right…” Ashlock muttered as he pulled that particular root back with as much force as possible.

To his surprise, Diana flew out of the fog and crash-landed beside the wooden bench onto the purple grass.

She was drenched like a drowned rat and seemed completely out of breath. Black mud stained with green and red blood caked her clothes, and she appeared to be missing a shoe.

Ashlock was thrilled to finally see one of his sect members alive and well. In a cultivator world, so long as the person had most of their limbs intact, they were fine, in his opinion.

“Well, pulling on the root worked for Diana, so maybe it will work for the others?” Ashlock pulled on all his roots, and Stella came out with a little more grace than Diana, managing to land on her feet with barely a stumble.

Meanwhile, Larry flew overhead and into his canopy with a crash with a yawning and unbothered squirrel on his head.

As the sun crested the mountain and shone onto the sparkling fog, it dissipated, and the courtyard returned to being devoid of the mystical fog.

“Oh, thank the Heavens.” Stella said as she collapsed and patted the courtyard’s lush purple grass surrounding Ashlock’s trunk, “I was not cursed to spend eternity stuck upon that beast’s back.”

After gathering her senses, she trudged over to the wooden bench and poked Diana’s shoulder with her foot as she relaxed on the bench’s armrest. “What in the nine realms happened to you?”

“Big… wave…mud…monster,” Diana muttered between gasps. “Ugh… so tired.”

Ashlock gave Stella a minute to recover before he used the chalk stick left behind to write his questions on the wall, as she seemed like the one least exhausted. Except for Maple, but that squirrel wouldn’t listen to him anyways.

Stella appeared in a foul mood as she rested her head on her upright palm and huffed the hair from her face as she slowly translated the text. “What happened, you ask?”

She broke out into hysterical laughter for a moment before slapping her cheeks. Sparks of lightning rippled across her flesh, causing her hair to shoot up as if it had been struck with static electricity.

With a scowl, she reached up and summoned a hair tie from her spatial ring and spoke while she wrested her hair into a ponytail, “Well, I found myself lost in the fog all alone. After stumbling through it for a while, I felt compelled to reach out and touch a weird fragment containing another world that floated past me, and then before I knew it, I was standing on the back of a sky whale the size of Darklight City within a pocket realm overflowing with spatial Qi and an environment teeming with lightning Dao.”

Stella got her hair under control and continued, “Now, I will admit it was a great opportunity, but after spending a month swallowing lightning-filled ice, burning my hands, and suffering from Qi intoxication, I am in a bad mood.”

And with that, Stella closed her eyes and lay back on the bench. Refusing to even look at the wall so he could ask another question.

Ashlock had a lot to contemplate. Stella mentioned a month had passed, but he was sure only a week had passed here on Red Vine Peak since they entered the fog.

“It seems the {Mystic Realm} is some kind of small world? But why did Stella say she was all alone in the fog? Did the others go somewhere else?” Ashlock wondered and then turned his attention to Larry, slowly crawling down his trunk while trembling like a leaf.

“Hey, Larry?” Ashlock asked down the tether, and the spider paused like a kid caught eating from the cookie jar. “What happened in there?”

“M-master, I saw horrors I didn’t think imaginable—ow!” Larry grunted as Maple smacked him on the head for some reason.

Ashlock was confused. Why had Maple come out of the fog while on Larry’s head?

“Explain.” Ashlock urged Larry to continue, “What horrors? Did you go to the same world as Stella or somewhere else?”

Larry looked hesitant to explain, with Maple glaring at him atop his head. “Master… I had the pleasant experience of visiting Maple’s homeworld, and I h-had a l-lovely time meeting his siblings.”

The giant spider shook with every word as if terrified to slip up and say something wrong.

“Siblings!?!” Ashlock couldn’t believe it. Everything around Maple was a mystery. How did such a small squirrel survive in a dimension that contained that Worldwalker monster? What was his true strength?

“What did his siblings look like?” Ashlock asked through the tether, and Larry seized up.

“Master, they… were a bit larger than Maple and weren’t exactly what I would call cute fluffy squirrels.” Larry then shrieked as Maple tapped his claw gently on one of Larry’s eyes and viciously bared his teeth with a hiss.

Ashlock was a little taken aback seeing such a vicious side to Maple. He only ever saw the squirrel sleeping and going off randomly.

As much as Ashlock wanted to sate his curiosity, Larry wasn’t included in his pact with Maple, so the violent squirrel might actually murder his pet if Larry said too much. Which just made Ashlock even more curious.

Maybe if he could also go into these pocket realms, he could visit Maple’s world and see for himself. But that was a goal for another time.

Everything was a bit sudden, but organizing his thoughts, Ashlock concluded that his {Mystic Realm} ability allowed him to give access to pocket realms to all who enter the fog. It also seems that multiple people can go to the same pocket realm as Larry and Maple did, or they can end up in different ones like Stella and Diana.

Even more curious is how Stella described her realm as containing spatial Qi and lightning Dao. In contrast, Diana muttered something about a giant wave that gave him the vibes of a water Qi-filled environment.

What kind of world would he get if he could enter the fog? Opening his status screen to look at the {Mystic Realm} ability, he saw something he hadn’t been expecting.

{Mystic Realm [S]} [Locked until day: 3515]

Bringing up his sign-in system, he saw the current day was 3485, so the skill was locked for a month? The skill was also greyed out in his menu, and a warning message popped up when he tried to forcefully use it.

[Continuous access to the Mystic Realm can incur soul damage]

[Proceed? Y/N]

“So I can still forcefully use the skill if I wish, but it might damage my soul?” Ashlock mused as he looked over the warning message another time just to make sure.

He had already taken some soul damage during his ascension to the Star Core realm due to that Evergreen bastard, and even just losing 1% of his soul had left him with an empty and ominous feeling.

With no wish to gain any further soul damage, he decided to wait out the thirty days. Instead, it would be best to prepare for its subsequent use and give his sect members some time to recover and get over their anger toward him.

He hadn’t figured out why the fog dissipated when all of them had been pulled out and also why he found them all at the same time. Everything lined up too smoothly for it to be a coincidence.

His only guess stemmed from the skill’s time delay before he could use it again. “I found them all exactly one week after I used the skill, and then the fog dissipated once the sun rose. Does the ability have a seven-day limit?”

It would be essential to know, but he had no way to find out for sure until he did a second test run in a month.

Meanwhile, Diana had managed to push herself off the ground and stagger over to the bench. Before collapsing next to Stella, who was half asleep with her head on her palm, there was a flash of gold as Diana’s clothes vanished for a split second and were replaced with fresh, clean clothes from her spatial ring.

A pretty neat trick that Ashlock wished he had back on Earth, as getting dressed in the morning for work while being half asleep had always been an inconvenience.

Despite having a relatively good memory as a tree, he found his memories of Earth fleeting. As the years went by in this new world he found himself in, the memories of Earth felt more and more distant—alien even. If he somehow made it back, as a human, he felt his morals would be fucked up, and he would never be able to adapt to modern society again.

In a fresh set of clothes that reminded Ashlock of Earth every time he looked at them due to their modern style, Diana sighed as she looked up at his canopy and began to monologue as if that were where his ears were.

“Patriarch, as terrifying as that experience was, I can only thank you for it.” Diana summoned a blue flame on top of her head as if she were a human candle, “I was only in there for what felt like a month, but I gained a year or two worth of cultivation and am almost at the 8th stage… if my spirit root had been better, I would have ascended the stage already.”

She dissipated her flame and smiled weakly, “If we use this weird fog correctly, we could become the most powerful sect in the land. I just hope you will gift me with one of those truffles that Stella spoke of so that if I ever go in there again, I can soar to great heights and help protect the Ashfallen sect in the future.”

Diana’s ramblings made Ashlock realize something once again. His personal strength was nothing to scoff at, but most of his abilities aligned with empowering others rather than himself.

Trees were known for providing, nurturing, and protecting the forest under their canopy. Was the system trying to steer him in that direction with the abilities it had randomly picked for him? It was suspicious, to say the least. Did the system have an agenda? Did it always plan for him to raise a sect and fight?

“And if that was the system’s plan all along… who is my foe?” Ashlock wondered, “This seems like far too much effort to make me and my sect strong enough to face off a group of demonic cultivators out in the wilderness. Is there some greater threat out there I must face? Maybe the demonic beasts that will make up the beast tide? Or perhaps the Celestial Empire? Merchants? People from the higher realms like Senior Lee?”

The list was endless.

Ashlock had no clue, but he wasn’t one to complain about it. As a stationary tree, empowering those around him was ideal and gave him far more reach than any typical tree could achieve.

Speaking of the sect… Ashlock had been putting something off while desperately searching through the fog for his friends.

“Friends, huh… feels weird to think of them that way, but family is a bit too far for anyone except Stella… while acquaintances or sect members feel too cold.” Ashlock especially struggled to categorize Maple and Larry. One was in a mind control slave contract through the system, and the other was a mysterious squirrel he couldn’t understand even if he tried.

Writing on the wall, he notified Stella of what he had been delaying.

Stella barely looked through sleepy eyes at the wall and grumbled, “Those Redclaw bastards are all here now? Did they move into the white stone palace while we were gone?”

If they had learned those ancient texts, Ashlock could write to them directly through telekinesis or send Larry as his spokesperson, but if it took Stella a year to learn, then he doubted the Redclaw Grand Elder had even begun to grasp the basics.

“What if I learned this world’s language…” Ashlock realized he had never really thought about it, but he quickly dismissed the thought when he remembered why had had never bothered. “My {Language of the World} ability automatically translates everything, so it would be impossible to learn as I can’t even understand the original text or language.”

It was a passive skill, so he couldn’t turn it off. Why the skill couldn’t just teach him all the languages made sense due to the skill’s name. Language of the World suggested he learned a language that the entire world once knew or perhaps was there when the world was created.

Whatever it meant, it was apparent the language Stella and Diana spoke was a more modern variation of what they call the ancient runic language that he could speak.

“Is it urgent?” Stella asked with a grumpy yawn, “I couldn’t catch a moment of rest in that pocket realm. If I had let my body passively cultivate, I feared I would die from Qi poisoning, and the thunder was so loud.

It certainly wasn’t urgent, but Ashlock wished to give them some direction as, from his observations during the last week, Darklight City still appeared restless, and the villagers hid away in their homes.

His first day or two after casting the {Mystic Realm} skill had been spent frantically searching through the fog, but after a while, he had resigned himself to a more casual search as he doubted the system would give him an ability that would send his friends to their deaths.

So he had taken note of the surroundings in preparation for their inevitable return… at some point.

Ashlock wrote on the wall that she could take a day to rest first, and Stella graciously retreated into the pavilion in search of a place to slumber.

Cultivators rarely needed to sleep much, so Stella usually grabbed some shut-eye while resting on the bench below his canopy for a few hours in the midday sun.

But she clearly desired a place to quietly rest out of the windy Red Vine peak courtyard.

Diana also seemed too exhausted to even move from her spot on the bench where she was slouching like a couch potato watching a football game.

Without Stella to translate his questions, Ashlock could not ask Diana any questions. Unfortunately, she didn’t know the ancient language, so he questioned Larry more about his experience.

“Larry, what kind of Qi was present in the world you went to?”

The spider had been awfully quiet in the corner, sneaking glances at Maple, who had teleported up into his canopy at some point and was lying slothfully on Ashlock’s branch.

Larry kept his voice very low, which made it hard to understand when mixed with his gruff accent, “There was no Qi… only chaos.”

Maple slightly opened his eye, and Larry clamped his mouth shut, which seemed to amuse the squirrel.

That sounded rather ominous. How could there be a place with no Qi and only chaos? What was chaos even?

Ashlock decided to ask a more… tame question. “How did you two end up in the same pocket realm?”

“Well, Stella spoke of weird shards, but the moment I entered that fog, I was already in that accursed place…” Larry then crawled back and quickly corrected himself, “I mean, it was a lovely place! Maple’s family was very accommodating of me. Although I felt like a tiny bug next to them.”

Larry was careful at dropping the hints, but Ashlock started understanding the situation. When he tried to summon the S-grade Worldwalker, he saw the hellish landscape behind that giant creature. So does Larry think those behemoths are related to Maple? Is that what Maple will evolve into in the future?

It was hard to believe when he looked at the cute fluffy white squirrel, which couldn’t look more unassuming if he tried.

Whatever, it didn’t matter.

Once mastered, the {Mystic Realm} would be a massive boon to his sect, as Ashlock could provide Qi-rich environments to many different types of cultivators.

This diversity will make the Ashfallen sect far more stable than these houses that relied on a single affinity passed down through their bloodlines which tied their strength to the surrounding environmental Qi.

With only a few members, he already had two spatial affinities, one with water and another with ash affinity. Unfortunately, Ashlock still had no idea what affinity Maple had, if he even had any Qi to begin with, as Larry had mentioned there was no Qi in the pocket realm he went to.

Wait, did they even go to a pocket realm? Larry said there were no shards and that they just appeared there instantly.

“Definitely some Maple bullshit, I suspect,” Ashlock grumbled as he turned his attention away from the central courtyard and back out to the forest filled with villagers as it still required his attention.

Without the presence of cultivators on the walls, quite a few monsters had snuck over and were threatening the villagers’ lives.

The Redclaws seemed uninterested in making a move without being ordered. So Ashlock planned to save the helpless mortals while getting more sacrificial credits as they looked a little low after the big fight.

Once he had cleaned up the situation in the forests, he would send Larry and Stella to the Redclaws in the afternoon. It was about time he put those Redclaw fellows to work.


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