The Rise of the Black Plain - Chapter 1980
The day had finally arrived for the great gathering of the Pantheon of Honor, an event held every 20 years at the organization's headquarters on the Divine Continent.
At dawn, Minos and his group were ready to leave the Divine Continent, as the Great Gathering of the Pantheon of Honor lasted only one day.
Later that afternoon, they would make their way to the continent's west coast, where they would begin their journey to the Central Continent later that day.
With all the deals Minos had made over the past few months, the roads between this easternmost city of the continent and the west coast would be open to him. With the many wormhole ports between this vast area, his party could reach the west coast in a matter of minutes.
So the whole group was ready to leave these lands, just waiting for Minos.
Meanwhile, he had already left his group and his wives at Julian's faction headquarters, having gone to the Pantheon of Honor temple earlier in the day.
"Minos, you're a little early, aren't you? It'll be an hour before the members of the organization arrive." Wren said to the level 85 young man as she saw him arrive at the large hall where the event would take place.
When he saw that his seat was marked at the large oval table in the hall, which even had bleachers for the temple members' subordinates to follow their leaders' conversations, he commented to Wren. "I had nothing else to do locally, and there's no more time to cultivate. So I decided to come here once and for all."
"Really?" She smiled at him as she approached Minos and watched him sit down in his rightful place. "Are you scared?" She sat down beside him. "I was very nervous at the first meeting I attended. I was only a level 94 Demigod then, much younger and naive."
"Not much. I'm looking forward to returning to my state and going into seclusion." Minos said with a smile.
"Oh? But you should be. Do you know what this meeting is about?" She asked him, not blaming Minos for attaching little importance to this meeting.
For a young man with so many problems to solve, it was straightforward not to understand the importance of it.
"It serves to update our achievements, alliances between members, business, but also the council of elders to raise new requirements or withdraw others, as well as change policies," Minos said.
"Exactly, this can all happen at these mandatory meetings," Wren said before adding. "But you're missing something fundamental. At these meetings, we decide the distribution of the temple's resources, as well as the positions of more and less powerful members.
That's why we have factions in our organization. To discuss, at times like today, what the next 20 years will be like."
That's why this is a critical moment and could change the situation of an entire faction for better or worse.
Minos had ignored this possibility and was a little surprised to hear it from Wren.
"How is this dispute made? How exactly is it decided? By votes?" He asked her.
"On specific issues, yes. On others, it's based on merit. Whoever has made the most positive contributions to the temple, i.e., who has the highest balance, can get some special credits, including the right to cast a tie-breaking vote.
In other situations, an exclusive member of the organization like me can change their position so that they can spend the next 20 years in service or seclusion. As for a non-exclusive member like you, this could affect the level of information and resources you have access to.
All in all, today will be an essential day for all of us, Minos."
"I see." He said as he saw more members of the temple arrive, individuals he had never seen before and who soon came to his side to greet him.
As the minutes passed, more beings arrived, humans and hybrids from the Divine Continent, humans from the Central Continent, elves, as well as sea beasts and beasts from the Continent of Beasts.
In addition to the many Minos didn't know, the rest of the council elders would arrive after the members of Julian's faction arrived and take their seats.
In total, there were 76 members of the Pantheon of Honor: 40 from the Divine Continent, 8 from the Central Continent, 7 from the Beast Continent, 3 elves, and the rest were beasts from the seas, including beings from the Marine Empire.
Among the people sitting around that table, Minos was obviously the only Sage, six levels weaker than the weakest Demigod in the area.
In addition, there were 10 high-level Demigods in this organization, 5 of whom were at level 99, 2 of whom were at level 98, and 3 were at level 97. There were 23 mid-level Demigods: 11 at level 94, 8 at level 95, and 4 at level 96. Of the rest, most were between levels 91 and 92, and 7 were level 93 Demigods.
But that wasn't the actual power of this organization. Those were just the members, whether they were exclusive or not.
If one were to consider the families, sects, and clans behind these members of the Pantheon of Honor, the number of Demigods they could influence might be four, five, or even more times the said numbers.
Therefore, several high-ranking subordinates would come to this place with their leaders and then sit down on the outskirts of the area, leaving the large table in the center of the hall for only the actual temple members.
Once everyone was seated and speaking in low voices, Merritt saw that everyone was present and decided to begin the meeting.
"All right, be quiet. It's time to begin the 309,231st meeting of the members of the Pantheon of Honor to decide the future of our organization for the next 20 years, but also for the Ice Age that is about to begin."
Hearing Merritt's pause, Harvey Richards, the second oldest and most powerful person there, stood up and said. "Given the difficult times ahead, I propose a Divine Conclave to decide the next 100 years of the Pantheon of Honor."
When Harvey stopped speaking, all the members began to speak, some surprised, others already expecting the elder to make such a proposal.
Among those surprised, Julian clenched his fists, seeing Harvey's clever move to keep the power of the organization on his side during the upcoming meetings.
A Divine Conclave was a special mechanism useful in extreme times to protect the Pantheon of Honor. When it was used, the decisions made there were valid not just for 20 years but for an entire century!