A few hours after entering the North Sea, Minos' party realized why it was considered the most dangerous place in the Spiritual World!
As soon as they entered the North Sea, the entire crew noticed black clouds and choppy waters ahead of them, with fog so thick that they couldn't see more than a few hundred meters ahead.
Entering this area of dark skies, the group encountered the first high-level storm of their journey, and their defenses had been tested a dozen times in their very first challenge.
Spiritual storms were not as simple as ordinary weather events. A high-level storm was a special atmospheric event with intense and abundant lightning, rain, and strong winds, which together could form frozen and liquid droplets that could fly so fast that when they hit high-level objects, they could damage or destroy them.
Such a storm could be much more dangerous on the high seas than on land. After all, while land masses were harder to move, the ocean was a liquid region that was easily influenced by the surrounding climate.
Consequently, storms on the high seas could cause even more headaches for those facing them, given the risks posed by rough seas, giant waves, and the high-level sea creatures that usually move beneath such phenomena.
When Minos' group entered the North Sea and faced their first challenge, they encountered a giant whirlpool surrounded by lightning capable of killing even high-level Saints, along with a rain of granite so strong that all the items below grade-4 of that crew were destroyed in a single hour of storm.
The only reason why the Sea Folk's ship hadn't suffered significant damage was because of the formation of the group of Demigods, who also hadn't been seriously injured or killed in that first challenge, simply because they had followed Emperor Stuart's strategy.
However, as they passed through the first challenge, everyone in the crew knew they had narrowly missed several of their companions!
A bolt of lightning powerful enough to destroy a level 89 Sage had struck one of the crew members. Still, fortunately, he had been using his power in a defensive position at the time of the attack.
It was only because of this that he survived without suffering any after-effects that could have severely limited him for the rest of the journey.
But even after surviving the first of the North Sea's strange phenomena, Minos' party was scared!
"Fuck! How can this be? Another bloody storm?" One of the mercenaries in Minos' group shouted out in a cold sweat, seeing from a distance a situation similar to the one they had just experienced a few minutes ago.
After enduring more than an hour of stormy weather, the group managed to leave the area under the influence of that storm and reached an area of more stable weather.
But while many of the crew were relaxing a bit, feeling in their own skin why so many beings around the world avoided this place, they spotted another storm not far from them.
This time, it was a spatial storm, a much more dangerous type of phenomenon than the earlier event.
Seeing regions of space not far from them collapse and then explode, with a gigantic wave at least 100 meters high forming in front of them, Minos narrowed his eyes.
"This is very strange..." He muttered, but everyone in his group heard him. "Storms like the one we just survived are possible. However, two storms can't occur so close together without some kind of unnatural interference."
That didn't mean that aliens had to be behind these two storms. But natural phenomena could not produce two storms so close together in such a short time.
That meant there had to be something behind at least one of these two storms, whether it was an intelligent being or a high-level array set up by an intelligent being.
The members of the Sea Folk realized Minos was right, and there had to be a civilization behind the phenomena in this region.
Until a few moments ago, they couldn't say that. Even though some of the lightning that had hit them had made some of them feel strange, considering how accurately it had hit some of them, they couldn't say it was artificial. There was nothing to indicate that other than how strange the local phenomena were.
Even though the sea itself seemed to want to sink them, without proof that something or someone was behind it, thoughts were useless.
However, when the witnesses from Minos noticed something that could not have happened according to the known laws of nature, they soon realized there really must be something else in the North Sea that everyone was ignoring.
Seeing the spatial storm ahead that seemed to be there to take care of them, the level 92 woman of the Sea Folk said. "It is very likely that the phenomenon ahead will be more extreme than the previous one. Let's return to our positions immediately!"
The dragon looked in that direction, feeling a strange sensation in his being, not understanding why he felt so uncomfortable despite being at the highest level there.
But having already suffered from the storm they had just gone through, he quickly returned to his position, raising his defenses once again as he joined the formation designed by Minos' people.
"Minos, I feel something similar to what I've felt in the past." Grant came out of his cabin, pale, with a strange look. "I believe the storm ahead is controlled by the enemy who destroyed my cultivation and my crew back then!"
Hearing this, Ruth, who was standing next to Minos, narrowed her eyes as she looked ahead and saw a huge wave coming toward them while several spatial explosions appeared between them and it.
"Will we face an enemy as soon as we enter the North Sea? We're not even halfway to our destination." She commented to her husband.
Minos looked in that direction and wondered if they would have to face any enemies within hours of starting their exploration of the North Sea.
'Really?' He doubted it, but groups like his didn't exist, and even the crews thrown into this sea rarely survived the first of their trials.
By proving themselves capable of weathering the first storm and continuing on to areas further from the borders of this sea area, they might have attracted the enemy's attention!
"Alright, get ready to fight!" He preferred to be cautious. "Let's start the attack formation!"