”First Commander, are you certain we shouldn ’t meet up with his Majesty? ” A male demon with a bald head, tribal marks etched in his cheekbones and neck, and wielding a double-sided warhammer nearly twice his size, asked with a heft of his warhammer.
”Are you stupid? Why should we? This is our tempering experience, do you want to rely on his Majesty? ” Another spoke, a human male with nearly a hundred spatial rings hung around his neck. Some of them still had colorful blood on them, likely belonging to their original owners.
”Hmph! Rely on? Are you an idiot? I meant to get orders from! ” The bald demon argued, glaring at the human male. ”It ’s been two years since we ’ve been here. Who knows what he wants us to do, ” the bald demon added.
The human male frowned, ”You- ”
”Enough! ” Hong Chunhua halted their argument with an authoritative shout. They went silent instantly, clearly afraid and incredibly respectful of Hong Chunhua. They merely glanced at each other with a fighting spirit, unwilling to lose out to the other.
There were five individuals on a mid-sized boat, traveling across a purplish body of water. The water emitted a toxic and noxious odor. Despite that, there were lively fishes that swam freely within.
Amongst these five individuals were Hong Chunhua and Lian Yu, including three others from the Ascendants.
They had gathered together in search of the others, leaving the Zephyr Plains behind roughly nine months ago. Besides the human male and bald demon, there was a dark-haired female elf with silver-rimmed glasses who was chatting with Lian Yu. She was similarly a member of the Ascendants, but she was a little more quiet and reserved.
Hong Chunhua looked towards the horizon, ”His Majesty has claimed the Central Region and the Desolate Lands as his own, becoming the Holy Son of Tri-Elementus in this strange world. If he wanted to contact us, or find us, he would ’ve. This is our journey, meant to temper us. ”
”See! ” The human male exclaimed with excitement, clearly agreeing with Hong Chunhua. But when Hong Chunhua turned and gave him a glare, he shrunk back and lowered his posture.
”Bei Yunhan and Zu Zun, don ’t lose sight of our objective. You understand? ” Hong Chunhua said with a dignified expression.
”Yes! ” The human, Bei Yunhan, and the bald demon, Zu Zun, simultaneously agreed. Their expressions relaxed as they grew serious. They turned to the horizon, their eyes flashing with spiritual light as they unleashed their respective ocular-based spiritual spells. They seemingly linked with each other, bolstering their strength.
Lian Yu and the female elf, Li Yingu, faintly smiled at this scene. Despite their on-the-surface rivalry, those two were extremely reliable and exceptionally talented in coordinated arts and spells. In fact, they were more than just that.
Lian Yu watched them and asked, ”Are they really together? ” She was in utter disbelief at Bei Yunhan and Zu Zun ’s attitude towards each other. Furthermore, they were both males of different races.
Li Yungu brightly smiled, ”Yep. ” With that, she started tinkering with a compass-like tool in her hand, using her spiritual force to alter certain aspects within its spiritual formation.
”Li Yungu! How ’s the alterations going?! ” Hong Chunhua shouted.
”Almost! Need a few more changes. ” Li Yungu replied energetically. The compass was how they found the other Ascendants, but it was rendered ineffective since they entered the Noxious Seas. She had been working on it for months, finally close to fixing the issue.
Hong Chunhua nodded. Li Yungu was a Creationist, a dual Forger and Designer. She was extremely talented, receiving special nurturing from Wei Wuyin. As a Forger, she was skilled in constructing tools and armaments, and as a Designer, she can inscribe formations and even set-up powerful arrays.
Lian Yu was shocked that every member of the Ascendants were talented and skilled in certain arts and spells. Despite Li Yungu ’s specialization, she was terrifyingly powerful at the Spatial Resonance Phase, just like the others. Still, even after two years, she had only made the advancement of entering the Sky Ruler Phase, the Second Stage of the Astral Core Realm.
”There ’s something approaching! ” Bei Yunhan and Zu Zun said in concerted harmony. They executed handseals simultaneously, their eyes brightening up considerably as a result. After a while, they shouted, their expressions odd.
”It ’s a ship! Furthermore, it ’s hailing us! ” The two spoke as one, clearly their spiritual energies were deeply connected without a trace of disharmony.
Hong Chunhua narrowed her eyes as she observed a navy blue ship slowly emerge from the horizon. This ship was large-sized, capable of holding roughly a thousand individuals in a compact and conservative manner.
”Navy River Elves? ” Hong Chunhua asked. The navy blue ships were a signature mark of Navy River Elves, but she felt a strange sensation as she looked at it.
The two formed a new set of hand seals, and a boom resounded! They were pushed to the deck, their eyes bleeding. ”Shit! You bastards!! ” Zu Zun shouted in furious anger, grabbing his warhammer with his aura surging violently. The rage he felt was palpable. He was about to launch an all-out attack.
With his strength, that boat would collapse from a single swing, even from this vast distance.
”Wait! ” Bei Yunhan grabbed Zu Zun ’s muscular arm that were protruding veins carrying his enraged blood. Zu Zun paused.
”It ’s humans! And the…the Grand Prince is on board! ” Bei Yunhan said with an awkward expression. That expression was quite telling.
”Grand Prince? ” Li Yungu curiously looked towards the horizon, spotting the incoming navy blue ship.
”Grand Prince? LONG CHEN! ” Lian Yu jumped, her sapphire-like eyes emitting endless ripples as countless bombs of happiness exploded in her chest. She rushed to the edge of the boat, holding the railing as she watched the approaching navy blue ship. Her eyes suffused with the light of hope.
It ’s been two years since they last saw each other. She wished for him every morning and every night, despite the world having no night, wondering if he was looking at the solar star at the same time she was.
Hong Chunhua remained calm, clear-headed. She sought clarification, noticing Bei Yunhan ’s odd reaction. ”Elaborate. ”
Bei Yunhan wiped the line of blood from the corner of his eyes, looking at the navy blue ship. ”He ’s locked inside, behind a prison cell. It seems he ’s hooked up to a Energy Conversion Array…I tried to send our spiritual sight inside, but an expert noticed and repelled it. However, I caught a glimpse of his aura. It ’s unmistakable. ”
”…What?! Impossible! ” Lian Yu shouted in disbelief. ”He ’s Long Chen; how could he be placed on an Energy Conversion Array?! ” She had been captured for a similar purpose, so she dreaded such a situation.
Hong Chunhua barely reacted to her disbelief and question, ”Strength of the expert? ”
Zu Zun responded with a frown, ”Just a trifling Light Reflection Phase cultivator, thinking he ’s hot shit. ”
”How many on-board? ”
”About 300 captives, roughly 800 total crew, and 80 experts beyond the Sky Ruler Phase. A single Light Reflection Phase expert as Captain. All humans, and some of the captives are Navy Blue Elves. It ’s very likely their ship was hijacked, ” Bei Yunhan explained thoroughly.
Lian Yu bit her lips after being ignored, but she knew it was best to stay quiet at this moment. She held no power over their next course of action.
Li Yungu walked forward, ”Are we taking action, Commander Hong? ”
Zu Zun added, ”They ’re obviously pirates and slave traders. ”
”… ” Hong Chunhua furrowed her brows. This situation would normally have very little benefits to involve themselves in, but their Grand Prince was being held on-board. This was a kick in the face to the entire Myriad Monarch Sect. The audacity was outrageous, but she similarly knew about the contention between Wei Wuyin and Long Chen.
”Please… ” Lian Yu was about to beg, but Li Yungu placed her palm on Lian Yu ’s shoulder. Li Yungu shook her head, telling her to be quiet. This was not her decision to make lest she wished to fight them all herself.
After a long moment of consideration, the navy blue boat was still approaching, and the auras on board were clearly in a primed state for battle.
”… ” Hong Chunhua was about to make her decision when a voice resounded from behind her.
”There ’s an Ascendant on the ship! ”
The four turned to Li Yungu who held a compass that flickered with light, pointing towards the navy blue ship and becoming brighter with each passing second.
Hong Chunhua didn ’t hesitate any longer. With her auburn hair flowing with the sea breeze, she clasped her hand around her sword ’s hilt, and ordered: ”Secure the captives. Kill all enemies. We take no prisoners, do you understand?! ”
”Yes! ” The trio shouted in a practiced, aggressive manner. Even the delicate looking Li Yungu ’s demeanor had changed, her eyes flashed with violent, heart-quivering killing intent. They, with a simple order, had become battle-ready warriors!
Lian Yu ’s heart relaxed.
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