Chapter 389: Maria

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Blazing incandescent white lights heated up the Truth Union corridor, even though this place that administered all the top scholars and their knowledge still had a cold, unfeeling aura.


The sides of these corridors were transparent glass. When looking down, one could clearly see mechanical arms and various instruments at work as well as researchers in exoskeleton suits busy going about their business.


And standing above and watching this familiar yet somewhat unfamiliar Truth Union was the woman who stood at the top of all current knowledge—Truth Union Chairman, Maria.


During her 'seclusion,' Andrew had indeed done quite a lot of things. Had she come out later, perhaps the Truth Union might have even undergone a change of name.


After all, no ordinary person would dare to blow up the underground passageway to the Lower District that had been overseen by the Truth Union for over a thousand years.


Andrew... was never this daring in the past.


Maria pushed her glasses up the bridge of her nose as a dark glint flashed across her sky-blue eyes.


"Chairman Maria," her assistant shouted from behind her. "The Vice-Chairman, heads of departments, project heads, and project team leaders have all gathered in the main conference room."


Maria nodded somewhat pensively. "Got it."

She silently watched the perfectly organized scene beneath her, then turned around and strode toward the conference room, the sleeves of her spotless white coat and long black hair fluttering in her wake.

Andrew sat in the secondary seat of the conference room, looking exceptionally calm.


It was somewhat surprising that Maria could advance to Supreme-rank and survive the explosion. At that time, Raziel already anticipated her return, and that explosion was a gift prepared for her. Given her strength, he shouldn't have overlooked it.


The Andrew of the past might have started to hesitate and become flustered under these circumstances.


After all, Andrew had always been smothered by this ruthless genius.


But now, with the backing of that omnipotent god, as well as the great founder of the Truth Union who was once called 'Ethereal Wisdom,' he didn't feel the slightest bit afraid.


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Andrew sneered inwardly. You lived. Being alive is good as well...


A precursor whose fate was unknown, or a leader whose position was under threat. Of the two, Andrew was inclined to prefer the latter.


If Maria hadn't reemerged, she would forever be that precursor whose fate was unknown. The only great scholar of the Third Era that had attacked a Supreme-rank. But now, that might not be the case...

The only thing noteworthy was the stuff that Maria had found... Was it notes from the Lower District?


An insidious glint flicked across Andrew's eyes. Perhaps he ought to report this matter to Boss Lin. He recalled that Boss Lin had always been interested in the Lower District.


While he was thinking about all this, the sight of Maria entering the conference room caught everyone's attention.


"It's delightful seeing everyone again," Maria said as she adjusted her glasses. The lenses reflecting incandescent light made it impossible to see her expression.


Maria received quite the rapturous response from others in the room, though Andrew only raised an eyebrow but didn't say anything.


"My long seclusion was somewhat special, and I'm sorry to have kept it from everyone as the method used was a little peculiar and I had no choice but to head into the Lower District. But it's over now. Hence, I can officially announce that I've already advanced to Supreme-rank," said Maria calmly.


An uproar immediately erupted in the conference room.


"That's great! This is massive news for our Truth Union!"

Excitement and fervent reverence filled the faces of the scholars in the room. "Our Truth Union has finally produced another Supreme-rank member after Sir Ymir in over a thousand years!

"No, not that it's been confirmed that Sir Ymir isn't dead; with our two Supreme-ranks, the Truth Union has completely surpassed Secret Rite Tower. Th-this is an opportunity for the Truth Union!"


Sounds of congratulations filled the entire conference room. Had it not been for the usual calm, rational temperament of scholars as well as the fact that their superiors were present, they might have already started cheering.


Andrew gave a presentable and formal smile as he surveyed the entire room.


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It appeared that Maria was still quite extraordinary. She was born with immense talent into a reputable family. This was a genius that people sang praises about since she was a little girl all the way till present day where she was the extraordinary leader of the Truth Union.


Not to mention that there were only a handful of Supreme-ranks in this world. Most people couldn't even imagine what sort of existence Supreme-ranks were—an unfathomable existence that could shift natural laws and become the master of a certain domain.


However, there was a brainless Supreme-rank existence by Andrew's side who was completely at his mercy. There was also the only true god, Boss Lin, so Maria's achievement of Supreme-rank wasn't much of a blow to Andrew, who merely leaned back slightly in his chair and watched on indifferently.


In fact, Andrew doubted if Maria had truly mastered domain or Law. Without these, a so-called Supreme-rank was just lip service.


Andrew's gaze was full of scrutiny without the slightest hint of fear.

"Somaya," Maria suddenly called out. A female scholar seated to the left of the round table stood up. Maria looked at her and ordered, "Start reporting on all that was done here during my absence."


"Yes." Secretary Somaya took out a thick stack of papers and got ready to start.

"No need to go through that much trouble." Smiling, Maria raised a hand to interrupt. "Everyone's time is precious. Just explain it as briefly as possible and send the written report to my office later."


"Yes, yes, ma'am." Somaya tensed up, immediately putting away the papers, and cleared her throat. Then she began her report.


Maria leaned back in her seat, scanning the actions and expressions of all her fellow scholars while, at the same time, listening to Somaya's report on the various Truth Union undertakings during this period. On top of that, she would point out any mistakes or shortcomings in the report.

It was impossible to tell if she was observing her subordinates or contemplating about the contents of the report.

It was a level well to be expected of one that had achieved Supreme-rank. This stifling feeling was completely different from before... All of the scholars within the conference had the very same thought in their minds.


"…And, in the case of the Magic Ovum Mirror," Somaya adjusted her glasses before she went on, "it was the first time the bookstore owner showed initiative in displaying Supreme-rank strength, because..."


She hesitated for a moment.


Maria, who had been silent for some time, suddenly looked up. "Because of?"


Somaya glanced apprehensively at the Vice-Chairman seated at the side. "Uh, because of Vice-Chairman Andrew's mistake, which led to the Truth Union and the bookstore being on opposing sides."


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"Ahem," Andrew rapped his fingers on the table, interrupting before Maria could reprimand him. "But later on, I investigated and found that it was a mole within the Truth Union that caused this trouble. Moreover, I've already gotten the bookstore owner's forgiveness."


"A mole?" Maria frowned.


"The Path of Flaming Sword planted a spy within the Truth Union in a bid to control us. But fortunately, Vice-Chairman Andrew's foresight helped avert this," Somaya quickly added.

"No." Andrew raised his hand and smiled modestly. "It was all thanks to Sir Ymir." He met Maria's eyes and specially dragged out his enunciation of ‘Ymir.’


"Heh," Maria, who was still looking Andrew straight in the eye, chuckled. Yet, it was impossible to tell whether she was happy or angry. "I see..."


Andrew didn't back down and kept his gaze firm as if he was indeed just stating the truth.


Maria smiled insincerely. "Although this is all thanks to Sir Ymir, Vice-Chairman Andrew definitely played a big part in having the Truth Union thrive in my absence."


"You flatter me." Andrew was well-versed in the hypocrisy of nobles. He maintained an appropriate smile, his playboy demeanor still shining through even though he had aged. "I'm only the Vice-Chairman after all. It was Chairman Maria who instructed me before she went into seclusion, so I naturally had to do my best."


Maria didn't get baited in; instead, she turned back to Somaya. "Continue. Tell me more about the bookstore owner."


"Yes." Somaya nodded and briefed Maria on everything that was known about Lin Jie till now.


Maria tilted her head and listened, eyes narrowed.


Everything that happened during this period of time, all the conflicts and disputes that—though existed for some time already—had become intertwined as if sucked into a vortex. One by one, every piece and every organization was dancing like marionettes under that party's will.

When you're just trying to make great content at


The Truth Union had unknowingly become a tool in that being's hands.


And now, the scholars present were even proud that they could be of help to Lin Jie.


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Something wasn't right. It was definitely very wrong.


And how that party had influenced the Truth Union was through Andrew... and Ymir, who had suddenly come back to life.


Somaya's report came to an end as Maria pondered.


"…This is everything that has happened since you went into seclusion, and here's the written report."

Somaya placed a stack of paper in front of Maria and withdrew.


Maria nodded in silence, her fingers tapping the table as she looked at the manuscript.


The scholars present were also silent as they waited for the Chairman's speech, and the atmosphere mellowed.


After some time, Maria looked up and suddenly said in a relaxed manner, "The Truth Union having two Supreme-ranks now is worth celebrating. But, upon consideration of Sir Ymir's lofty status, it wouldn't be good for me to remain as Chairman. How about—

"I give up my position?"


Maria revealed a slight smile. It sounded as if she was discussing a small matter like improving the quality of food at the Truth Union's canteens. The entire conference room went deathly silent as all the parties present were stunned.


Andrew sucked in a deep breath. He hadn't expected Maria to make such a move.


What exactly... does she want to do? It can't be that she's oblivious that the position of Chairman is her greatest insurance policy other than her own strength?

As long as she stepped down from her position, Andrew was confident that he could make her disappear within three days. What exactly gave her the courage to abdicate?

"What do you think, Vice-Chairman Andrew?" asked Maria.


Andrew was silent for a bit before he replied, "This is a rather serious matter. One that we can't decide this casually..."


Maria looked him in the eye, then at everyone else, and proclaimed loudly, "Why aren't you all saying anything? Then, I'll give you all time. Three months from now, we'll vote to decide who the Chairman will be."

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