Beastmaster of the Ages - Chapter 571
The autarch continued his onslaught with the sword in hand . He then executed an intermediate empyrean-ranked battle art, Skyseize Sword Art . Seizing the sky, no, the heavens themselves, was an act of indomitable will . The strike was so quick that it allowed him to avoid at least half of the spiritsource abilities that were unleashed . Even the lightning bolts of Chaos Disaster that charred him all over didn’t weaken the momentum of his charge at all .
But just as the strike was about to connect, the Prime Tower appeared and blocked it . The autarch’s sword strike clashed with the Prime Tower at high speeds, causing it to deviate thanks to the soul servant pushing it away . Then, the tower suddenly grew in size and rammed into Autarch Qian .
Autarch Qian spat out another mouthful of blood . Just as he was backing away, Ying Huo’s Pyros Imperius struck his thigh and sent charred flesh flying . It was quickly followed up with ten successive punches from the Soulfiend, slamming the autarch into the ground . The cherry was finally topped when a huge amount of Bloodfiend Disaster was infused into his body .
“Buzz off!” Autarch Qian sent his saint ki exploding outwards, blasting away the Bloodfiend Disaster and breaking off from the barrage of punches . Despite being the lone fighter, he had the power of the saint ki belonging to a second-level empyrean saint, which wasn’t something to scoff at .
The moment he broke free, he immediately started searching for Tianming, only to wonder where he was . When he turned back, he saw the white-haired youth swinging the Grand-Orient Sword and unleashing Myriad-Sword Demise as well as Sword Imperealm Formation . The power of that strike far eclipsed that of many first-level empyrean saints!
With a loud twang, Autarch Qian parried it, almost losing his grip on Primeval Styx .
“How does despair taste like, old demon?” Tianming said, his rage soaring through the skies . He then split Grand-Orient Sword into two and pierced one of them into the autarch’s lower abdomen .
Tianming had tried to ruin his saint palace, but the autarch’s saint ki was too powerful . It was able to push out the sword even after it had pierced into flesh .
With a loud bang, the autarch punched Tianing’s black arm and sent him flying, causing him to cough out blood . This only made him look even more fearsome and bloodthirsty . “You should thank the heavens that a vile beast like you was allowed to live for so long!”
Just as the autarch was about to respond, the Primordial Bloodbane Kunpeng dug its claws into him, tearing even more flesh out, revealing the bones that lay underneath . Lan Huang then used Primordial Soundwave, shattering both his eardrums .
“Thank them? The heavens envy us, the Theocrats! They even fear us!” He climbed back up from a pool of blood before cackling madly .
“You’re wrong . The ways of heaven focus on the bigger picture . In the eyes of the heavens, your Nineshades Clan is nothing but an infinitesimally small blemish on the world, a mere ant! All you had going for yourself was finding a way to perpetuate your clan by sacrificing the lives of others! You don’t even stand a chance to seize the heavens for yourselves! Those who walk the path of a false ruler will eventually be taken out by a true sovereign . Today, the one who will be meting out the judgment of the heavens is none other than me, Li Tianming!” His eyes blazed with the glory of suns as the Grand-Orient Sword grew immeasurably bright in his hands . “Heh, you, of all people, claim to be the true sovereign? Hahahahaha! That’s a joke if I’ve ever heard one! You’re far too naive, too fresh! Even if you wipe my clan out, false heroes and hypocrites like you will never be able to overcome our clan’s will to shock the heavens! The Theocrats shall never perish for all eternity!”
“Dream on . ” Killing intent seeped out of Tianming as he and all three of his lifebound beasts, the soul servant, and the kunpeng went all out . There was no way the autarch would be able to take on so many different attacks, all the while Ying Huo and the Soulfiend sneaked in more and more attacks when he wasn’t looking . The complexity of all the different attacks blended together into an unpredictable, chaotic barrage . Each individual one was tough to deal with, let alone all of them together!
“Tianming, my little friend, that’s why I said you were too naive! Even if I perish today, you will one day come to be tortured for eternity! You will never be able to rest in peace!” As he spoke and laughed, he took out a thick heavenly pattern tome that seemed to be five stars at least . Five star tomes were priceless, far more valuable than even the Bloodbane Formation . Autarch Qian activated it with his blood and targeted Tianming with it .
“You want to fight me? Even if you’re an unmatched genius that can stand against me and cause me to despair, you will die all the same!” The tome had already been activated . It would be fatal if it connected .
“That’s the Soulsmother Tome!” Feiling said anxiously .
“I see . ” Tianming nodded without any other reaction . Instead, he continued straight towards the autarch like a moth to the flame .
The Prime Tower manifested above the autarch’s head and pressed down on him heavily, causing him to have no choice but to block it with his sword while pointing the tome at Tianming with his other hand . “So long, Li Tianming . “
His expression was one of pure bliss as the book faded into his sea of consciousness, still aimed at Tianming . He could already imagine the sight of Tianming’s soul being smothered out, the sight of him dying a horrible death .
Seeing Tianming close his eyes, it seemed as if the tome had worked . But the next moment, his eyes opened once more as Sword Imperealm Formation and Myriad-Sword Demise were unleashed . So what if he had the Soulsmother Tome? Was it a match for his Soul Tower?
“Is dementia getting to you? Why’d you pick a soul attack heavenly pattern tome to use against me of all people?” His sword strike connected the moment the Prime Tower suppressed Autarch Qian, shaking the heavens and the earth .
The Prime Tower slammed down on the autarch’s head while the Grand-Orient Sword pierced through his saint palace . The thick sword then went all the way through his body . When Tianming drew it out, spiritual energy came blasting out incessantly .
“Aaaagh! My power! My precious power!” The autarch’s brain had been crushed just now . His eyes were filled with blood as he stretched his hand out and pressed it against his saint palace, but that was an exercise in futility . He audibly fell to a kneeling position before Tianming . If Tianming hadn’t stopped the soul servant, Autarch Qian would’ve been flattened to a meat paste already .
“This is not your power . All this is, is the crystallization of the atrocities you have committed . ” He stretched his hand out and lifted Autarch Qian up by his hair .
“Hahaha . . . ” The autarch looked at him and continued to laugh . He still tried to raise his sword in an attempt to kill Tianming, but that slash didn’t even leave a cut on Tianming’s shoulder .
“How does it feel to be a mere mortal? Or, as you so like to put it, a little fish? Huh?” Tianming asked with a smirk . “Old fool, I prepared a fishing rod specifically for you . I will let you have a taste of this . I’ve been waiting for this chance for far too long!”
He took out a fishing rod from his spatial ring . As it was a bestial weapon, its hook was extremely sharp . Tianming hooked the autarch by his mouth and raised the rod . He lifted him up before tossing him into Azure Oceanic Purgatory .
As the waves roared, the fishing rod shook ferociously . As the autarch slammed into the ground, his saint ki dissipated completely, causing him to age at a rate visible to the naked eye . His hair turned entirely white, and wrinkles began to form all over his body . He even began to hunch and got many liver spots .
“You’re afraid of aging and dying, right? Don’t worry . I’ll make sure you can’t die even if you want to . “
The fisherman had become the fish, one that was caught . Tianming pulled the rod and lifted him back out . All the autarch could do was widen his eyes and stare at him blankly . After truly losing everything he had and experiencing despair, he gained an experience that used to be foreign to him . He finally knew the extent of despair and desperation .
Tianming carefully pulled him up by his white hair, afraid of accidentally killing the elderly man who was on his last breaths . “Autarch Qian, the Cyclic Mirror has been shattered, and all your descendants have been wiped out . Now, I want to ask you this: What happened to the so-called will of the Theocrats, huh? Did it turn to ash after I gave it a good stomping?
“From now on till forevermore, your hydras and sydras shall no longer roam this land . Everything you and your clan stood for will be cursed by the future generation . To think you once claimed that you would never be wiped out . . . I’m sorry, I guess I surpassed your expectations and did just that!”
He gave him three slaps to make sure the autarch didn’t drift into unconsciousness .
“Hahaha . . . ” The autarch still laughed .
“What are you laughing for?”
“It’s pointless . Xuanyuan Xu will kill all of you all the same . “
“Oh? Still holding on to that sliver of hope, I see . Why don’t you take a look over there then?”
The autarch struggled to turn behind him with the hook still embedded in his mouth . He looked more pitiful than anyone could be, but this was his just deserts . It was heaven’s judgment itself .
The sight that greeted his eyes was one where Xuanyuan Xu knelt before Li Muyang, his head lowered as he spat out fresh blood . His Infernal Viledragon had already been torn into two pieces and was leaking blood all over the ground .
“Feng, watch this thing here for me . Make sure it doesn’t die,” Tianming said .
“Alright . ” Ye Lingfeng stood guard before Autarch Qian while Tianming headed where Li Muyang was .
“You . . . You’re part of the Infernal Soul Clan?” the autarch asked .
“That’s right . “
“How are you feeling now?”
“Absolutely magnificent,” Ye Lingfeng said with glee .
“Haha, I guess your clan deserved the karma that was coming to it then . We Theocrats have killed so many more of you than you have ours . It’s a steal of a deal, really . It’s a shame your forebears all died without rhyme or reason . ” The autarch broke out into another fit of laughter .
“You’re mistaken . Firstly, wiping out the Nineshades Clan was the only wish of my forebears, and that has already been fulfilled . Secondly, Brother Tianming will make you pay the price a thousand times over . Just you wait,” Ye Lingfeng said .
Even though he didn’t personally get to kill the members of the Nineshades Clan, he was the one who kept the Evil Suppression Formation running at full tilt the whole time . Not to mention, he was a huge help in today’s decisive battle . Without him, there was no way the Decimo Dao Palace would be able to fight back against the Theocrats . Ye Lingfeng had many contributions under his belt .
. . . . . .
Tianming was now standing in front of Xuanyuan Xu .
“I’ve already crippled him by destroying his saint palace . You can have him,” Li Muyang said .
“The Cyclic Mirror has been shattered . Will my godfather and the palace lord wake from their coma?” Tianming asked .
“They will . Leave it to me . “
“I’ll see you later then . “
“Alright, I’ll head there first,” Li Muyang said before he walked towards Autarch Qian, the target of his grudge and misgivings .
Tianming and Xuanyuan Xu’s gazes met .
“If you dare kill me, the others in the Archaion will make sure to exterminate all of you and your clans!” Xuanyuan Xu was so terrified that he stammered as he spoke .
“You sounded really arrogant earlier when you almost killed me and stabbed my godfather,” Tianming said with a smirk .
“Young man, let me hear your terms . Keep me alive, and I’ll take you to the Archaion . You are sure to prosper there,” Xuanyuan Xu said with resignation .
“Do you think I need you to do that?” he asked as he picked up the spear from the ground . “Is this your weapon?”
It should be, given that it had ninety-nine saintly heavenly patterns .
“What are you going to do?” His eyes widened as his body began to shiver from the boundless dread he felt coming from Tianming .
“You see, I repay what I owe others with a hundred times the interest . You stabbed my godfather once, so I will stab you a hundred times . If you can endure it, I’ll let you live . ” Tianming’s voice was cold, and he wore a mask devoid of expression as if what he was saying was nothing consequential in the least .
“No . . . Don’t . . . Do—aaagh!” Before he could finish, his thigh had been punctured through .
“That’s only the first stab . Surely you can do better than this? Don’t embarrass the Archaion . “
Fifteen minutes later, Tianming said, “Not bad . There’s only one left . “
The person beneath him, nay, the pincushion, was bleeding profusely from all the holes made by the spear . He didn’t even have any energy left to speak . All he could do was let his eyebrows twitch as he sunk in the quagmire of abuse and despair .
With an audible squelch, Tianming stabbed his heart last before turning to leave . Xuanyuan Xu no longer twitched .
. . . . . .
When Tianming returned, Li Muyang and Autarch Qian were facing each other . The former stood while the latter remained kneeling .
“I’m going to collect your and your lifebound beast’s souls, so the two of you will live on forever . Your punishment is eternal solitude . You’ll have an eternity to ponder the nature of life and the relationship between man, the heavens, and dao,” Li Muyang said .
“The scariest thing in the world is solitude . Amazing . . . You really understand me well . I’m finally starting to quake in my boots . . . ” His tone of voice overshadowed any attempt at irony .
“Relish in it . You’ve earned it . You alone shall pay for the sins on behalf of your entire clan . “
The words sent chills down Tianming’s spine . What was endless solitude like? There would be no rest; he would have to be sealed in the void alone, conscious the whole time . While one might be able to take a day of it, what kind of nightmare would an eternity of that be?
“The wheels of karma turn without stopping . The effects that come about as a result of our actions will definitely come . The way of the heavens is so deep that all you know is but a drop in the ocean . Yet, you dared to foolishly ascribe your shallow notions to the way of the heavens . Perhaps in a hundred years, in your lone meditation, you’ll understand what it truly is . In a thousand years, you might even understand what divine punishment is . In myriad years, you’ll know that you’re nothing but an insignificant speck of dust in the eternal life of the boundless cosmos!” Li Muyang’s words were so profound that Autarch Qian couldn’t even begin to comprehend even the superficial meaning .
“Dongyang Qian, in your own words, you are also a fish to the heavens . If a fish like you dares to eat other fish, what do the heavens prey on?” Li Muyang’s words caused the light to fade from the autarch’s eyes .
“M-m . . . Me . . . ” he said with an incessant jitter . This was his greatest fear .
“Jing’er, come here,” Li Muyang said, waving to her .
Soon, a woman came floating to the ground . Tianming and Autarch Qian were both shocked to see her .
“Jing’er, you’re still alive? Did . . . did you reincarnate as well?” His eyeballs were bulging so much that they were about to fall out .
“I did . And I was fortunate enough to only cross paths with you in a single lifetime . I truly hate you,” she said . She was none other than Wei Jing, but to Autarch Qian, she was still Jiang Lingjing .
What was this whole reincarnation business about? Tianming’s mind was a complete mess . He desperately needed Li Muyang to explain everything to him pronto . Why did he show up so late and not earlier?
“Hate . . . Hate? Hate!” The autarch’s tears fell as he prostrated on the ground .
“That’s enough of an outburst . You’ll have more than enough time to process your feelings later . You should use this time to say your farewells,” Li Muyang said .
“Dongyang Qian . . . ” Wei Jing didn’t want to see him at all . Her shoulders shook as she said, “Thank you for raising me . . . But that doesn’t change anything . You deserve to die ten thousand times over . “
“Uwu . . . ” Autarch Qian let out a heartrending cry as he fell flat on the ground .
Li Muyang slapped his head and took out a white mist that seeped into his eyes . That was it for the autarch . Just like Li Muyang said, he would spend eternity alone . In comparison, Xuanyuan Xu’s fate of being stabbed to death was far more desirable . Tianming finally took a deep breath .
“Mom!” His tears began to flow nonstop .
“Tianming . ” Wei Jing opened her arms wide and embraced him . This was a hug that he would never forget for the rest of his life . Who knew if he would ever have a chance to feel this warmth again, with how tumultuous life was?
“Tianming,” Li Muyang said with a solemn look .
“Greet your dad,” Wei Jing said .
“Dad,” Tianming said confidently . He knew that the two of them would answer all his questions soon .
“Good . ” Li Muyang nodded with satisfaction before he stretched his hand out and put it on Tianming’s shoulder . “My appearance before you now has put much into peril . . . You only have two hours to bid all of them farewell . After that, you must head to the Canal of the Dead to be able to avoid a deathly tribulation . “
Those words caused Tianming to blank out .