Chapter 822: A Whole New World.
Looking at Jeanne's features, the pure white and golden figure smiled.
"Staying in this form is not suitable..." Slowly, the figure's body began to change, and in less than a few moments, a middle-aged man with blond hair and green eyes appeared. He was wearing quite the elegant suit.
"This is better." He smiled contentedly.
The reason for his choice of form was his position as Jeanne's 'Older Brother'. Even though Jeanne was older than him, he was still the 'older brother', so the image of a middle-aged man was appropriate.
"I'm glad to see you, Jeanne."
"Mm!" Jeanne just smiled and hugged him.
The Universal Tree caressed Jeanne's head and looked at her Soul. He then nodded with satisfaction.
'Good, the Being I sent is still protecting her.' He thought.
Next, he looked at the newly formed planet which, despite being smaller than Nightingale, had a lot of potential.
'Doing things as I normally do isn't possible with this planet, after all, it was artificially created by a Mortal.'
The Universal Tree was quite surprised by these events. After all, it was the first time a 'Mortal' had created a planet. Sure, he had help from some Primordial Gods, and from his sister, but he was the one who initiated the whole process. He was the one who accessed The System and made everything possible.
Many Beings had the ability to create a planet, but few understood the means to do so 'correctly' through The System. Without meeting those requirements, nothing that fell under the jurisdiction of 'Life' could be created on those planets.
Creating something as significant as an entire planet required direct approval from The Primordial Entities. After all, the planet needed to be registered within The System.
It was like the process of building a massive structure in the Human World – you needed government approval before the project began, and you also needed their 'assistance'.
In this specific case, where a planet had been formed through the proper channels, The Universal Tree would specifically assign one of his daughters or create a new daughter to manage the planet.
After all, without a World Tree, a planet cannot sustain itself.
The Gods of Creation instinctively understood this whole process, but the same didn't apply to other Gods.
The Universal Tree looked toward Victor.
"You're really doing this, huh?"
"Yes." Victor nodded seriously.
"Do you know the consequences of creating a new Pantheon? A new planet? As a God King, you'll have responsibilities to fulfill within The Astral Plane. Not only that, as the owner of a new planet, you will also be responsible for the Material Plane. You'll need to ensure that 'Life' and 'Soul' function properly. How will you do that without a complete World Tree?"
"Roxanne alone won't be enough to manage everything," The Universal Tree stated.
"I clearly understand all of that. Roxanne won't take on all the work; I will help her along with the Faeries and Gaia. For a new planet, Gaia is more than sufficient to take care of everything alongside me and Roxanne."
"... That's true, but what about the future?"
"I'll leave that problem for my future self to solve."
"It's not irresponsibility." Victor shook his head from side to side, denying the man's words.
"Oh? Then what is it?"
"Trust." He spoke with a neutral voice that carried a magnetic confidence capable of altering even the Space around him.
The Universal Tree raised an eyebrow. "Trust?"
"Indeed." He raised both hands as if to display his whole self: "Look at me. My history speaks for itself. I went from an ordinary Human to one of the most powerful Beings in less than a thousand years."
"I am better." He smiled broadly: "Better than all those Gods who wasted eons doing nothing."
"How can I not be confident?"
The Universal Tree smiled upon hearing what he said. The man's confidence was overflowing and oppressive. Many would think it was arrogance, but it wasn't. It was simply the truth.
"The responsibility will be great, you know? You'll have two Hells to manage, and you'll need to ensure that everything functions properly."
"No matter. I can handle it. After all, I won't be alone." He looked at Jeanne with a gentle smile.
"My Family and I will take care of everything."
"That's true, I don't see why my sister couldn't take care of something so simple." The Universal Tree laughed. Jeanne was the one who had protected him when he was just a sapling; taking care of a planet was even easier than that.
Jeanne blushed a bit and turned her face away when she felt her brother's gaze, and Victor's.
The Universal Tree continued: "Very well... If you're that confident, allow me to help a bit more." He looked into space as if searching for something, then spoke again.
"You three, come here now. This is important!"
As soon as he said that, Space distorted again, and three Beings appeared nearby.
Three Beings that Victor didn't know, but judging by their humanoid appearance, it wasn't hard to guess.
The Judges of The Abyss were present.
"What's the problem? We were busy... Oh." The three spoke simultaneously and fell silent as they looked at the planet, then they spoke in the next moment.
"So, it's happening, huh?"
"He doesn't waste any time."
"As expected from the former anomaly."
As triplets, they completed each other's sentences.
'Former anomaly?' Victor didn't miss that detail but decided to save that information for later.
"Help me here. I want to make a change in this sector of Hell, I need your approval." The Universal Tree spoke.
The Judges of The Abyss looked at the man. "What are you planning?"
"I will merge The Greek Hell with The Biblical Hell and incorporate it into The Norse Hell."
"That will disrupt The Balance."
"The resultant Hell of the former anomaly will be immeasurable, this cannot be allowed."
"That Hell will be too vast, and if a failure occurs, a disaster of immeasurable proportions would be inevitable."
"Such a thing cannot be allowed."
"Hey, I understand what you're saying, but he said he can handle it, right? So, why not let him take care of the largest Hell in this Sector?" The Universal Tree explained.
An odd silence fell upon the area, but it was soon broken by the middle Judge of The Abyss:
"... The Universal Tree, do you intend to make him an Overlord?"
"... Oops?" Jeanne's older brother just awkwardly laughed.
"Leaving such a task in the hands of someone who isn't even a God, let alone someone as young as him, is a significant risk!"
"You're spoiling him just because he's your brother-in-law!"
"In that case, how about reducing the number of Hells in this Sector to three, with them being the Biblical, Hindu, and Norse Hells?"
This time, they didn't immediately respond and thought for a moment. "Hmm... How would that work?"
The Universal Tree displayed a small smile. "The Biblical Hell will merge with The Greek, and The Hindu Hell will merge with the ancient lifeless Hell that Diablo purged."
"Finally, The Norse Hell will merge with the remaining ones."
"This way, it will create a trinity with the same level of importance."
"Hmm... That is acceptable."
"Actually, it is a rather good idea."
"In case of a catastrophic failure in one, the other two Hells can handle the responsibilities while we fix everything."
"Let's do that."
'This old man... He was after this from the beginning.' Victor, as a manipulator, could easily see through Jeanne's brother.
What would now occur was that The Judges of The Abyss would reduce the number of Hells and Paradises to three: Biblical, Hindu, and Norse.
The Universal Tree and The Judges of The Abyss looked at the newly formed planet and opened their mouths.
In the next moment, words were spoken, but neither Victor nor Jeanne understood anything that was said.
They were proving why they were The Administrators of the entire System.
In the blink of an eye, Victor felt a deep connection within him; his Hell had just grown several hundred times larger.
'... They're on another level.' Victor laughed internally, but he wasn't discouraged. It was always good to see that there was someone stronger – it meant he still had room to grow stronger!
"Done." The three Judges of The Abyss spoke simultaneously.
"We'll be watching your work, Primogenitor of The Blood Dragons." Then the three disappeared.
'Blood Dragons?... They really like to name my Race with anything, huh? Well, that doesn't matter much. After all, I haven't even found a suitable name for my Race.' Victor shrugged internally.
"Due to your Hell growing to its current size, three Rulers will be required to manage the Souls that pass through. Choose well, Victor." The Universal Tree spoke.
"Yes... I already have someone in mind for the other Ruler." Victor wasn't planning on removing Aline or Persephone from their positions; after all, they were already perfect at what they did. He just needed to choose someone else to take up the mantle and fill the remaining spot.
The man nodded, then asked, "Can I talk to my daughter?"
Roxanne emerged from Victor's Soul and looked at the man with a slightly upturned gaze. "Hmm... I... I'm sorry!"
"Hmm? Why are you apologizing?"
"I didn't fulfill my duty as The World Tree of Nightingale and ended up merging with Victor's Soul. Because of that, this planet will be filled with problems in the future."
"Oh..." He now understood the problem. "About that, it's okay."
"You just have to go get your sister and place her inside his Soul, right? That way, this planet will also fall under your jurisdiction, becoming part of Victor."
Roxanne's face distorted. 'I don't want to share my space with that Thot!' She wanted to scream so much right now, but she knew it would be inappropriate, so she could only nod in confirmation.
Victor squinted his eyes at this. "You speak as if I have a world inside me."
"But you do," He spoke as if it were obvious.
"You can bring other Beings besides Roxanne inside you."
"Your evolution has changed a lot about you, Victor."
"Even this newly created planet is linked within you." The Universal Tree snapped his fingers, and in the next moment, the planet slowly began to disappear in a golden light and entered Victor's body.
Roxanne wore a thoughtful expression as she felt the world within her grow once again; she now had two planets! And these two planets were starting to merge into a mega planet several hundred times the size of Earth.
'Ugh, managing this is going to be a hassle. I need someone else to share the burden... Maybe I'll ask Victor to kidnap nature-related Goddesses like Gaia. Tiamat is a good choice.' Roxanne refused to consider her sister as an option.
"... I suspect that this ability to have a planet within my Soul is because of Roxanne?"
"Correct. The World Trees were created to perform my work on a smaller scale, while I manage The Universe. The fact that you have a World Tree in your Soul just means that the 'planet' that The World Tree was supposed to attend has changed, and as it is a 'planet', it will still exist and be capable of hosting life."
"... That makes absolutely no sense, but at the same time, it does." Victor chuckled. He couldn't quite grasp the logistics of it. Does a planet not need to exist within the Universe? Huh? How does this work?
He had no idea.
"You'll get used to it with time. Many things won't make sense for now, but they will over time. All you need to do is learn more about The System, and my Blessing will help you with that."
Victor just nodded; this conversation was proving quite enlightening for him.
"I understand that Hell is also a part of my Soul now, right?"
"Yes, indeed it is."
"Just how does that work...? I'm referring to the Souls of the deceased."
"A deceased Soul will enter within another's Soul? Someone dies and their Soul will automatically go into my Soul? Huh?"
"As I said, you'll understand with time." He smiled.
"But to put it simply, these worlds aren't inside your Soul specifically; they're within a separate dimension, and that dimension is within your Soul. So, any of the problems you're thinking of won't actually happen."
"Hmm... I get it and at the same time, I don't..." Victor spoke. 'I need to investigate this in the future.'
"Just think of it like those cultivators who have an Inner World within their Soul." He gestured with his hand, and three platforms appeared in front of him.
"The First Platform, or Foundation if you like, is your Soul, which holds your entire existence together. Due to your recent Evolution, this Foundation has become much stronger, reaching ridiculous levels."
"The Second Platform, or Foundation, is the new dimension where the planet resides."
A connection then appeared between the Second and Last Platform, and he spoke: "And this second dimension, or the Third Platform/Foundation is connected to The Biblical Hell."
"... I understand." With illustrations and a good explanation, Victor understood. What he didn't understand was how this was possible. He wanted to know all the intricate details of how this became possible, but apparently, he would only learn that by studying more about The System.
With a wave of his hand, The Universal Tree made the illustration disappear and said, "A word of warning. Be careful with this planet; since it's connected to your Soul through Roxanne, any damage to the planet will feel as if you're causing damage within yourself."
"... That's a problem." Victor frowned.
"Hmm?" Seeing Victor's look, The Universal Tree immediately understood the problem: "Oh, you're thinking that if someone cuts down a tree, you'll feel it or something?"
"... Isn't that how it works?"
"Hahahaha, that's not how it works." He laughed in amusement. "If that were the case, my daughters would have gone insane from the pain already."
"What I meant was, if you unleashed, let's say, a Breath on the planet, and that attack hit an important section of the planet's function, like the Leylines carrying Energy, or The Core, you'll feel it."
"Apocalyptic-level damage, huh?" Victor spoke.
'I presume that if the planet gets poisoned, I'll feel that too.' Victor narrowed his eyes even more at this information; he didn't like it one bit.
'It seems like I'll have to use my planet only for my subordinates and my Family. If I keep the population small, I can control them better.' Victor thought.
This thought was already in his mind; he only ever had the intention of making this planet for his Family and his subordinates. Knowing the information that the Universal Tree shared, this determination grew even stronger.
'Maybe I'll bring my Faithful as well, but only those who are truly fanatical and will follow all my orders without the risk of betrayal. My planet can be the 'Paradise' for these people.' As he was going to be a Pantheon's 'God-
King', he needed to create a 'Paradise' too, right?
Although, there was already a Biblical Paradise, so this Paradise would be a private 'Heaven' only for those Victor chose.
'Hmm, that might work.'
"Yes, you got it." He nodded. "Only truly catastrophic damage will cause you to feel something."
"Seeing the size of your planet and how resilient it is, you won't have these problems for a long time, but it's good to stay informed for the future."
Victor nodded in agreement.
"Do your job well, Guardian. Millions of Souls are counting on you."
'Guardian, huh? They really like giving me Titles, don't they? First, I was an anomaly. Next, I was a Blood Dragon, and now a Guardian, huh…? Can't they just decide and stick with one already?' Victor thought.
"Are you leaving already?" Jeanne asked.
"Yeah, I'll visit you in the future; I want to see your children."
"But I only have one child?"
"Well, it won't be just one forever, right?"
Jeanne blushed a bit and nodded.
Jeanne's brother looked at Victor seriously: "Take care of my sister, Victor."
"You don't even need to tell me; I'm already going to do that."
"Good... But also take care of yourself."
"You not only carry the weight of several Hells within you but also carry my sister's heart. If you die... I don't even want to think about what she'll do."
"So, get stronger."
Victor just nodded; he didn't need to be reminded of that. Seeing the feat these Primordial Entities just pulled off, he wouldn't stop training and seeking strength.
"One more thing..." The Universal Tree looked around as if searching for someone. Seeing that no one was there,
"Go after The Ruler of The Norse Hell; that way, you'll have control over 2/3 of the Hells in this Sector, fufufufu."
"..." Victor looked at the man with a deadpan expression, but he just nodded.
"That was already in my plans." He would have to talk to Hela anyway, so when he ventured there eventually, he'd see how things would unfold.
"Good... Very Good." The Universal Tree nodded several times, satisfied, completely ignoring Jeanne's lifeless stare at him, a gaze that sent shivers down his spine.
'Honestly, that look scares me a little bit. She wasn't like this before; just what happened to my sister?' The Universal Tree was a busy man, and he was not a weirdo who'd spend 24 hours a day spying on his sister; he usually just checked in from time to time to see if she was okay.
The Universal Tree gently tapped Victor's shoulder. "Here, some help."
Roxanne's eyes widened when she felt the entire planet merging at high speed.
'As expected from Dad, he's efficient.' She observed with curiosity, hoping to learn something.
But her eyes widened even more when she saw a sun forming within the Dimension; she also noticed that the Dimension grew a bit to accommodate the size of the sun.
'My God, he's too efficient! This is ridiculous!' Roxanne couldn't help but think.
"I'll see you in the future. Take care, Victor, my daughter, and Jeanne." The Universal Tree spoke.
Time returned to normal.
"... Well, that was enlightening... I didn't get a flying island, but I have an Inner World now. I guess that's good?"
"What are you talking about, Victor? And where did the planet go!?" Scathach spoke.
"I'll explain later, before that, I need your help, both of you."
Victor landed on the ground, as the girls were about to start asking about the planet, Victor repeated:
"I'll explain later."
Soon, he snapped his fingers, and a Gate emerged from the ground. On the other side, they could clearly see a green forest and a blue sky.
"The moment he touched you, he created a Sun within the Dimension," Roxanne explained.
"... Just with that casual gesture...?" Victor asked incredulously.
"Primordial Entities are broken."
"Well, yes... They are," Roxanne nodded.
Victor just sighed, then assumed a serious expression.
"Come, this is our new Dimension. Scathach, Zaladrac, and I will fly around the planet and place down various Runes. Meanwhile, you can do whatever you want."
"Just a heads up, only those of you who are here are allowed to enter. If anyone else tries to enter, well, they'll be disintegrated."
Victor spread his wings and flew through the Gate along with Zaladrac and Scathach.
Seeing Victor passing through the Gate, a feeling of uncertainty hung around. Would they go or not?
This feeling was broken when Agnes, Violet, Natashia, Sasha, and Ruby entered the Gate without much thought.
The girls looked at each other and shrugged, then entered as well.