Chapter 38: Entering the Dreamrealm (1)
Su Chen hobbled out of the room, breathless and without energy.
The skinny student was dazed by Su Chen’s nearly exhausted appearance
Many students came to clear different rooms, but not many came out of the rooms looking half-dead.
How much energy did you use clearing that room?
Su Chen laughed dryly.
It was a happiness borne from achieving victory after fighting with all of his strength.
It was a success borne from never giving up!
No matter the time or circumstances, he would not give up!
This was exactly the kind of person Su Chen was!
Of course, the battle from today had opened Su Chen’s eyes to many of the faults that existed with his battle style.
He had not been prepared enough for his opponent, his thinking had been somewhat idealistic, he had been too self-confident, and he didn’t adapt quickly enough. This was an experience that would make him more cautious in the future.
After all, this place was only an illusion. If this had been on a real battle, even if he had won, he would’ve become a cripple.
Clearing that room gave Su Chen 150 contribution points. When adding on the 150 that he had from before, he had 300 in total.
With these 300 contribution points, he could finally do something that he had wanted to do for quite some time – enter the Dreamrealm.
It costed 200 contribution points to go from Tier 8 preferential treatment to Tier 7. After ranking up, Su Chen’s identity placard sent him a notification: “Detected that the target of preferential treatment is already registered within the Dreamrealm. Do you want to activate an imprint?”
Su Chen confirmed the activation. He felt a strange power flow through his body, as if something hot was coursing through him.
However, when Su Chen activated his ability to see Origin Energy, he discovered that there were no changes in his body.
This burning sensation only existed on his consciousness. His brain was telling him that his body was warm, but in reality nothing was happening.
Next, Su Chen felt the flow of energy gather on the back of his left hand, slowly forming a smoky symbol.
Su Chen was stunned.
Just like before, his eyes didn’t notice any abnormal energy flows in his body, and he didn’t see any special substance aggregating. However, this symbol had still appeared on his hand.
If it weren’t for the fact that his eyes could see Origin Energy, he might not have discovered the profundities involved.
Was this a unique characteristic of the Mirage Dreamrealm?
Was it using the consciousness to substantiate otherwise ethereal objects?
Su Chen gazed at the strange symbol on the back of his hand. It looked somewhat similar to the small spirit that had snuck its way into his body earlier.
As the symbol continued to form, a wave of information entered Su Chen’s consciousness. It was detailed instructions on how to enter and exit the Dreamrealm.
With this symbol on the back of his hand, Su Chen could enter and exit the Dreamrealm.
However, when entering the Dreamrealm, he would fall into an unconscious state, so he would need to choose a safe location.
Upon discovering this point, Su Chen returned to the Origin Energy Tower.
After returning to his room, Su Chen laid down and followed the prompts of information that had entered his brain. He concentrated his attention on the symbol on the back of his hand. Slowly, the symbol began to change as it constantly revolved. Finally, it formed a whirlpool which began to emanate a powerful sucking force, pulling Su Chen’s consciousness in.
In that moment, Su Chen felt as if he had begun to float.
He revolved around the whirlpool, feeling as if he was a small bird soaring through clouds.
Suddenly, he was ejected from the whirlpool. He snapped his eyes open wide.
He discovered that he was standing underneath a brilliantly-colored sky. The sky was filled with rainbow-colored clouds shining with mottled light. The ground beneath him was covered with large swaths of grass.
Off in the distance, a large castle stood.
A white ball of light was suspended above the castle, emanating strange energy in all directions as it slowly revolved.
Su Chen was staring in amazement when he suddenly heard a voice say, “Hey, newcomer.”
Who was talking?
Su Chen looked around, but he couldn’t find a single person.
The voice seemed to become slightly displeased. It said, “Where are you looking? I’m here, here!”
He followed the voice downwards, only to discover a blue butterfly floating up and down in midair. Upon closer inspection, he discovered that between the large blue wings was a small maiden.
The small maiden was wearing a tight and revealing light-blue dress. She wore a pair of short blue sandals that revealed her bare feet. A beautiful flower hoop was weaved on her middle finger on her right hand.
She had short blue hair, a pair of sharp ears, large eyes, and a small mouth.
She was extremely cute.
“You were the one talking to me?” Su Chen said, still in a daze.
He had never seen a lifeform like that before.
“Of course!” The young maiden huffed as she placed her hands on her hips. “I am your guide, Dream Spirit Lulu. Follow me.”
She flew a circle in the air before heading for the castle.
Su Chen was about to follow her when he discovered that something wasn’t quite right. He realized that he was floating in midair.
Because he was floating, he had no way of walking.
“Hey, wait a moment. What do I do?” Su Chen yelled at the Dream Spirit. “I can’t walk.”
“So fly over!” Dream Spirit Lulu replied.
Su Chen wanted to reply that he didn’t know how to fly, but after thinking about it briefly, he concentrated on floating forwards. His body then started to move forwards unsteadily.
A trace of surprise flitted across Lulu’s face. She nodded in approval. “You learn quite fast. Remember, this is the Dreamrealm. In the Dreamrealm, what you think will become real.”
Although it was somewhat unsteadily, Su Chen had still begun to fly forwards.
He focused on controlling his own body. More precisely, he was controlling his thoughts as he followed the Dream Spirit towards the castle.
As they drew near the castle, Su Chen began to realize that it really was extremely massive.
It looked like a city that was filled with imagination. Tall towers were densely packed everywhere, and the streets were made of rainbows that flashed beautifully. Squirrels and cats pulled carriages through the sky. A pair of human-like statues bowed as they drew near, and glowing snails were hung from stone poles to serve as street lights……
This strange scene completely astonished Su Chen. The Dream Spirit leading him was already speaking, “You are currently in the Dreamrealm created by the Lord of the Dreamrealm. Because it links together everyone who has the appropriate authority, it is also called the Dreamnet. This illusory castle is a node in the Dreamnet called Node 124. You can activate your privileges as a member of the Dreamnet here. However, before that you need to select an identity for yourself.”
“Call me…… Cloud Bat.” Su Chen remembered an event from the past. “Right, what can I do here?”
“Okay, Cloud Bat, your name has been registered. In the future, when you enter and exit the Dreamnet, this will be your identity. Your instructor should have told you already that the Dreamnet is mostly used as an information transaction hub. If you have any information that you need to investigate or a message to send, you can do all of that here. However, all messages will only be sent if a price is paid. Of course, you can also sell messages to obtain money. According to the rules, the Lord of the Dreamrealm will take a transaction fee of 5% from every exchange.”
“So how do I pay? Don’t tell me that it’s Origin Stones,” Su Chen asked.
Since they were in the Dreamrealm, things with real substance were not of any use here.
“Consciousness power!” The Dream Spirit replied. “Every life form has consciousness power. By using your consciousness power, you can form these things.”
The Dream Spirit reached her hand out. A shiny and glimmering quicksilver like droplet of water slowly appeared in front of Su Chen.
“These are Dream Droplets, the currency used in the Dreamnet. You will need to expend your own consciousness power to form them. Under normal circumstances, a beginner Qi Drawing Realm cultivator needs an entire day to condense one, so it’s roughly equivalent to a low-grade Origin Stone in value. However, the amount of consciousness power one possesses is not directly related to one’s cultivation base, so some low-tier Origin Qi Scholars may possess strong consciousness power. Thus, it’s hard to say how quickly you will form one.”
Su Chen understood now.
Dream Droplets were basically the same as Origin Stones. Both were a form of currency that the Origin Qi Scholars themselves could produce.
Origin Stones contained Origin Energy, and Dream Droplets contained consciousness power.
The Lord of the Dreamrealm’s goal in constructing the Dreamnet was probably to gather these Dream Droplets, or consciousness energy.
Su Chen didn’t know much about the Dreamrealm or its master, but from just hearing his name, Su Chen could imagine that he was probably some unfathomable existence in terms of consciousness power. His level of strength was clearly shown in his ability to singlehandedly create such a network that connected countless people.
However, to Su Chen that was still a distant reality. Right now, he was still focused on trying to understand this place and determine what kinds of opportunities were available to him here.
Dream Spirit Lulu led him to a wide and spacious room within the castle.
In line with the entire Dreamrealm’s style, the room was brilliantly colored, the colors dazzlingly radiant.
There were also a few people in the room. They stood inside the large room, watching something on the screen. However, their faces were blurred, and it was impossible to identify them.
This was the Dreamrealm. Unless the other party wanted to reveal themselves, everyone could choose to conceal their faces.
The Dream Spirit continued to speak. “This is the Dreamrealm Castle’s Hall of Information. Everyday, large quantities of information are exchanged here. Some of them are public, such as the ones at the very top.”
Su Chen’s gaze drifted upwards. He saw a few pieces of information flitting around atop the screen.
“Traces of a Silverwing Demon Emperor have been sighted in Takarun.”
“The Dark Pestilence has engulfed the Sleepless Fort.”
“Eternal Night Banishing Light declares that Flying Spirit City will be rebuilt. The Primordial Chaos Tower has shifted towards the western border. Many cities are warning of an impending battle.”
“The List of Heroes has been updated. Chu Shangu defeated Feng Zhuying at the Endless Peaks. He advances to 37th place on the List of Heroes.”
Below the public information were more specific pieces of information that could be accessed for a fee.
One piece of information was worth one Dream Droplet.
If that was too expensive, one could also make monthly payments: 100 Dream Droplets were enough to gain unlimited access to all the public announcements and news for the entire month.
“These are all public notices. If you have a more specific inquiry, you can go to the room on the left. There will be a special Dream Spirit to help you. As long as you tell the Dream Spirit what you want to know, the Dream Spirit will give you a price for the information you want. Of course, not all the information you want will be available. If that’s the case, you can post a reward for an answer,” Dream Spirit Lulu continued to explain.
“So the room on the right is used for offering rewards for specific inquiries?” Su Chen asked.
“Smart!” The Dream Spirit flew around in a circle, as if dancing in midair. She then flew in front of Su Chen and said, “We will now go to the Hall of Knowledge.”
Su Chen followed closely behind the Dream Spirit. They quickly arrived at another spacious room.
Once again, a few public announcements and news were at the top of the screen.
The notices were as such: “The unique effects of twelve different Origin Energy Talismans on Metal Lotus Terraces”, “The different effects of Blackwater Demon Bone in powder and liquid form”, and “A fourth method for constructing a Moonnet Origin Formation”.
Just like in the Hall of Information, most of the knowledge here required a price to be paid in order to be accessed. What was different, however, was that there was no monthly bundle that was available. Every piece of knowledge needed to be paid for individually. After studying the knowledge, one could even give it a score based on how useful it was. The higher a piece of knowledge’s score, the more it would sell.
There were also a few pieces of knowledge that were completely free and required no extra fee. This, however, depended on the person making the information available.
“All knowledge related to Origin Energy is split between offering a bounty and providing a solution. You only need to enter the appropriate room on the sides. You can also find answers for any questions you may have about Origin Energy cultivation, alchemy, Origin Formation studies, Ancient Arcana Techniques, and a few other smaller categories. The Dreamnet contains geniuses from every corner of the continent, and all knowledge can be exchanged in this location,” Dream Spirit Lulu proclaimed with a hint of pride.
“Okay, got it. Is there anything else I should know?” he asked.
“Of course. Come with me to the Hall of Missions.” The Dream Spirit once again brought Su Chen to a spacious room.
However, this room had way more people than the other rooms.
“This is the busiest area of the Dreamnet, the Hall of Missions. The Primordial Continent is very large, so often the things we want are in very faraway places. However, the Dreamnet’s Hall of Missions avoids that issue. For instance, if you want to obtain a unique item from a certain faraway location, you can create a mission here and ask someone to obtain it for you.”
“Is this like the missions in the Institute that reward contribution points?” Su Chen murmured to himself.
The Hidden Dragon Institute also had missions that the students could complete to earn contribution points.
“No, they’re very different. The Institute’s missions are usually limited to the Institute itself, while the Dreamnet’s missions cover the entire Primordial Continent. It has a wider range, more missions, and greater rewards.”
“So it’s also more dangerous,” Su Chen coldly supplemented.
Su Chen only needed to take a quick glance at the missions board to see requests like, ”Find three Ghostherbs from Death Canyon”, “Kill an Ancient Demon in the Devil Altar”, etc. Most of the missions were incredibly dangerous and life-threatening.
Of particular note was that apart from a few missions that asked for certain goods, most of the missions were killing missions.
Su Chen asked, “Why are there so many assassination missions?”
The Dream Spirit replied, “Isn’t it obvious? Doing business like this is easier.”
Although missions could be posted here without being location-restricted, requesting certain items – for example, unique medicinal herbs – over an incredibly long distance could result in the loss of those items while they were being delivered.
Assassinations were different. As long as the target died and their corpse was imaged by a particular Origin Formation Disk, they could directly provide evidence of the killing through the Dreamnet. The Lord of the Dreamrealm would ensure the truthfulness of the report. If the target had been killed, the mission would be completed, and the commissioner would simply pay the agreed-upon amount of Dream Droplets. If another form of currency was desired, one could also use a local exchange to exchange Origin Stones into Dream Droplets.
The Lord of the Dreamrealm had many such exchanges setups all over the main world. The Hidden Dragon Institute was one of those locations.
This implied that this Hall of Missions was, in the end, mainly a place for assassination requests due to the limitations on the transport of goods.
Countless assassins were accepting missions in this place.
Something to note was that to the side of this large hall, there was a large list with names of assassins. The list ranked the thousand assassins in the Dreamnet and provide a corresponding price for their services.