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CHAPTER 94

THE COMING

Lino’s decision was not rash or made in an outburst of unbridled rage; rather, it was calculated and cold. During the short period of silence, he conversed with the Writ over his options, and learned of the particular function: forcibly crossing Realms for the short period of time.

Afterwards, Writ tried to explain the consequences, but Lino hardly cared. Anything short of permanent death was acceptable to him. After all, if he couldn’t vent the anger in his heart, he was certain he’d never get a wink of sleep for the rest of his life.

Naturally, he didn’t plan to exterminate the entire Su Clan; most of them were completely innocent and unaware, and however enraged Lino was, he wasn’t blinded by it. Revenge and massacre are two things he didn’t dare mix together. Thanks to Lucky, he already had a vague idea of who exactly to target which simply meant there was no reason to delay it any longer.

Because he couldn’t fly, he knew it would take a bit too long to walk over to Su Clan - perhaps half a year at the very least - so he had Lucky lead him to the destroyed teleportation platform.

Tattered stone lay around, the circular formation cracked over its entire surface seven or eight times, with runic lines nearly entirely perished. He studied for a moment and, to his relief, realized he could fix it. It should be enough for a trip over there... and back here.

Lino didn’t immediately go after Demons even though it may make a bit more sense to a bystander; though he very much wanted to save Freya, he knew that Prince Yox had long since left, especially because he couldn’t find Lino. In the end... I just hope he won’t do anything too quickly...

He set about to fix the formation while Lucky sat on the side, occasionally nibbling on some seeds while trying her best to suppress the surging screams. The already clouded sky grew even darker as heavy rain began to fall, soaking both of them. Yet, neither seemed to care much; Lino’s mind was entirely focused on the formation itself.

He didn’t know much about it but, thanks to his experience with arrays, he at least had some idea on the direction. Thankfully, he also had more than enough materials to fix it temporarily. After all, he didn’t need it to be perfect or to transport hundreds of people numerous times. Making it stable for a day or two was more than enough for him.

He patiently worked through the entire night before a faint smile crept up on his lips. By now, clouded sky, as though pierced by an unknown power, was gone, replaced entirely by blue expanse with the golden sun slowly rising in the east. Lino wiped sweat off his brow as he looked up toward the horizon and sunrise. Though it was beautiful, it hardly impacted him much. It was time, he realized.

He looked at Lucky who didn’t say anything and instead got up and walked onto the formation, followed by Lino shortly after. He took a deep breath and flung nearly twenty thousand Qi Stones he’d already prepared at the specific points of the formation. Even if he didn’t know all the details, he knew the overall structure; formation served to rip open a void between two points in space - no matter how far away they were.

As space itself was extremely durable - even here, where Qi was rather weak - to do that required enormous energy, something Lino couldn’t provide himself. After a void was torn open, space was bent between two points until the distance narrowed to measly few meters.

All this knowledge stemmed from his attempts to understand the Laws of Nature, as well as his reading in Ava’s library. He came to understand a bit more about the world itself and how it functioned; for instance, he knew that clouds didn’t simply ‘appear’ in the sky. Rather, they were formed from the invisible water vapour rising high up, where the temperatures drop and vapour in turn condenses - into clouds.

Similarly, he knew that space itself wasn’t as flat as he imagined it to be; though the books he read on it were rather vague and didn’t provide any definitive answers, by contemplating himself, he came to some conclusions in which he was quite confident. For instance, he believed one couldn’t physically ‘tear open’ space; what they did was simply displace it, revealing the void behind it. At the very least, that’s what Lino thought. He was too weak, though, to confirm it.

As he watched the formation light up and felt space around him vibrate, he realized that his conclusion seemed to be right; though it appeared as though space around him and Lucky was being destroyed, it was simply being ‘moved’ in a sense to create a hole. That hole was a spinning vortex which was just large enough for a person. Usually, large-scale teleportation formations would make the ‘mouth of the tunnel’ immensely vast, but the size of the tunnel itself connecting two points couldn’t be too large. As such, though it seemed everyone was teleported at the same time, the reality was that they crossed the tunnel itself one by one and then were forced to wait - without realizing it - for others to catch up on the other end of the tunnel.

As Lino wasn’t teleporting a lot of people, he used just enough energy to tear open the hole large enough for a person. Even though he was certain Su Clan had already destroyed the formation on the other end, it didn’t matter; coordinates were already ‘installed’ into the formation beneath his feet, and he had rough destination in mind, even if he might be off by a few miles.

Without pausing, he walked into the vortex whereupon he felt strange vestiges of space assail him. Thankfully, the formation didn’t simply open up a tunnel between two points, but also coated it in shielding which made it possible for a person to cross through. Otherwise, only someone who could manipulate space and void at will could cross freely through - something Lino certainly couldn’t do.

Though the journey was short - merely tens of seconds - Lino gleamed a lot from it. Even if he read about space and void and how they function, this was his first time seeing the turbulence of space. With a bit more research, and a bit more strength, he was confident in being able to ‘tear open’ the space with his bare hands at will.

It took him a few moments to gather himself after he was spat out on the other end of the tunnel. After getting used to the sudden burst of light, he glanced around and realized he was standing on a midway point of a rather barren mountain. Surrounding him were other, similar mountains, which further encircled a large valley down below. When Lino’s eyes landed onto the valley, the suppressed rage almost burst out from him.

Right there, in the heart, was a massive town - perhaps town was a bit of an exaggeration, but Clan Headquarters hardly seemed to do justice to the size of the thing. Su Clan... Lino thought inwardly as his breathing sped up and grew ragged. The town was bustling with life and activity and constant stream of people going in and out of it. South-eastern part of the town seemed a bit cut off from the rest, like a fat bulge at the edge, and sported even grander architecture of which the three massive spires seemed the most impressive.

They were clad in bright, golden color, while slightly shorter buildings were silver. The smallest buildings in the ‘bulge’ were bronze-colored, and Lino immediately realized that must be where pretty much everyone who he marked resided.

The three spires formed a triangle and Lino’s eyes immediately lurched toward it; while other Clans and Sects usually hid their Artifacts, Su Clan proudly displayed it right there. One part of it was a golden globe, akin to a sun, resting at the very center of the triangle, spitting out light ceaselessly. Surrounding it were thirteen silver-colored globes, similar to the moon, who continued spinning around it in a specific pattern. Unlike the sun part, which held a hint of warmth even at the vast distance Lino was at, he detected a vestige of cold within the thirteen moons. Lino immediately realized that this was the Clan’s famed Defensive Artifact, one of the most basic requirements of a named Clan or a Sect - [Cycle of Heaven and Earth].

Su Clan’s Cultivation Method relied on day and night cycles, examining profound meaning behind sun disappearing and moon appearing in the sky, as well as vice versa. It was no coincidence that their unified belief formed the Defensive Artifact that it had, nor that it had such name; in order to practice their Cultivation Method, [Thirty-three Cycles of Heaven and Earth], they had to embody it - believing wholly that sun and moon represented cycles of Heaven and Earth and, in extension, Life and Death itself.

Lino’s eyes focused onto the Artifact as he used the Primal Spirit to examine it. Even though he was unable to decipher its entire status window, he immediately learned more than 90% of people in the Clan itself. Seeing it, though, made his confidence drop somewhat; only now he truly understood why massive-scale wars between Clans and Sects were so rare.

[Cycle of Heaven and Earth - Clan Artifact]

Level: NIL

Damage: NIL

Durability: 10,000,000

Special Effect: [Symphony of Day] - ??? -

Special Effect: [Symphony of Night] - ??? -

Special Effect: [Cycle of Heaven and Earth - First Form] - ??? -

Special Effect: [Cycle of Heaven and Earth - Second Form] - ??? -

Special Effect: [Cycle of Heaven and Earth - Core Reversal] - ??? -

Special Effect: [Cycle of Heaven and Earth - Heaven’s Fall] - ??? -

Note: Defensive Artifact of Su Clan; can only be wielded by the Clan’s current strongest person. Its destruction signals Clan’s destruction.

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beddedOtaku

Bio: Bad writer, worse painter, terrible singer. Accumulation of all things gone wrong. Rather proud of it, actually.

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