The woman who just appeared from the crack approached Arthur and assessed him while smiling.
"Boy....To think I finally found you, this will surely bring me a lot of benefits, It won't be long before I arrive here, wherever here is.."
Then she looked around but she couldn't find out where exactly she is, in what planet.. She just found Arthur by using a forbidden spell which cost her a lot, she bet on it and fortunately, it worked.
Just as she said that, Arthur storage ring vibrated then a skeleton came out of it, surprisingly it was Zodiak’s corpse which was only a skeleton now, it appeared more alive than ever and its eyes were jet black.
Even the woman seemed surprised by this, the other witnesses couldn’t normally see her except for Arthur and the appearance of this skeleton startled her a little.
The skeleton didn’t speak, it only raised it’s hand and immediately, a huge black vortex appeared next to the woman, it was like a vacuum attracting everything, even the woman’s face whitened as she saw this vortex.
She began to write some strange white lines on the air however it didn’t seem to work as she was being pulled by the vortex at a rapid pace.
After several seconds, she was almost sucked in and at that time, the silent skeleton finally broke the silence and coldly said
“It’s too early for you to come here, be gone treacherous woman from Heavenly Snake Clan”
Then, the vortex began to shrink followed by the woman’s yells and in no time everything returned to normal, the skeleton turned to look at Arthur for a second before returning to his storage as if nothing happened.
All of this was only visible to Arthur, the others only saw the black chains holding Arthur, even Lucy didn’t see the skeleton nor the woman.
Arthur's body began to regenerate at rapid speed, his high vitality was really useful, however, his body was bloodied and his limbs twisted in a weird manner which made it look even more disturbing.
Such pain was nothing compared to what he was feeling a couple of seconds ago, he sighed and his mind calmed down a bit, but he was feeling a bit fearful, he couldn’t resist for even a split second if that woman wanted to kill him then he would have been killed.
Lucy, who has been standing not too far away from him, rushed next to him and began observing his injuries, her face was full of worry as she looked at Arthur’s state.
She retrieved the Minor Healing Elixir and the Miraculous Healing Potion and fed them to him with extreme gentleness however they did nothing, it was as if he only drank some water.
Saly also came running toward Arthur, her face full of tears as she was very anxious, she didn’t want anything to happen to him and when she saw him screaming like that she obviously thought he was going to die.
She hugged Arthur’s bloodied body forgetting that he was injured and began sobbing and calling out to him.
Arthur let her do as she pleases and tried using some minor Healing on himself which surprisingly worked, it didn’t do anything big but it helped ease the pain by a little.
Mary and Wuji were still dumbfounded by what happened, the old man gazed and seemed lost in thought, he didn’t know what exactly happened, but for those chains to be able to let him scream like that, a person with his strength, they must not be ordinary or the least bit weak.
Soon, his surprised gaze turned to a serious one as he seemed to have come up with a dangerous idea.
Wuji charged at Arthur and Lucy, wanting to finish them off, from the very beginning he didn’t want to invite them into the clan but as he couldn’t win against Arthur he had to stop but now since the man is heavily injured, he wanted to kill them and end it.
His speed was very fast, however, Lucy who was almost as strong as Arthur, sensed him and lifted her head only to see the old man coming her way with his palm prepared to strike, she was already worried about Arthur and seeing someone use this opportunity to finish him angered her.
In a split second she rushed at an old man who was equally surprised by her speed as he never expected her to be this strong, unfortunately for him, Lucy was in no mood to spare him, whether he is important or not, she launched a punch with all her strength intending to instantly kill him.
If he is struck by this he would obviously die or would be heavily injured if he’s lucky, previously Arthur only used half his strength and sent him flying so if Lucy used all her strength then he’ll be dead for sure, of course, Wuji didn’t know this so even though he saw her coming at him with a speed faster than his, he was abruptly startled, nonetheless he didn’t back off and already readied his strongest attack.
An almost invisible golden dragon was formed around his hand, it roared and made his palm more brilliant, the palm itself emanated a strong pressure with a dense green fog enveloping it.
The two strikes were going to touch each other when all of a sudden, something or rather someone came between them.
Lucy’s punch was stopped as a cold palm completely stopped it as for Wuji’s palm, it was also stopped in a similar way.
If one would look closely, they would see a black-haired woman between them, she wore black clothes from head to toe and had what seemed like daggers in her waist, she literally looked like an assassin.
Lucy, who was expecting to kill the old man was startled by what happened and gazed at the pretty woman in front of her.
The black-clothed woman, had a breath-taking face, it was extremely beautiful, however, it contained coldness, her eyes were icy and not a single emotion was showed on her face, it’s as if she’s a painting.
The woman stared at Lucy but the latter couldn’t see what that woman’s expression is as she seemed skilled in hiding it.
Lucy backed away a few steps in a flash and continued to stare suspiciously at the woman.
As for Wuji, once he saw that woman, he sighed and became even more relaxed, he was already in despair that’s why he used his strongest attack, he was not embarrassed that his attack was easily stopped by this woman as he knew how strong she really is and he simply cannot compare to her even though she is way younger than him.
It was his eldest granddaughter and the master of the clan, albeit being very young, she already took over the position of the clan master and no one could oppose her, at the day of the ceremony, a few elders challenged her for the position but were mercilessly killed by her.
She is Anastassia Ma, her talent in martial art is considered non-rivaled as for magic she is also not bad, from a young age she showed unparalleled talent and she never ceased to train which resulted in her being the strongest in the clan at the time being.
Wuji called happily, in front of the public he had to call her like that but in private he would call her by her name as she is his granddaughter.
Soon, a cold and piercing void resounded as she finally spoke while turning her head to look at Wuji
“What is this?”
She did not know what happened, she heard a loud scream so she came immediately and what she saw was her grandfather almost dying by this woman's hands in front of her.
Just as Wuji was going to speak, someone came flying from the pagoda, at a closer look, it was a red-haired young woman with a witch hat who obviously was the long-awaited Sonia.
She too heard the scream and was curious about what happened as she saw her sister disappear suddenly.
Once she was close enough, her eyes landed on Mary then Lucy then Arthur who was on the ground, her eyes widened and her mouth was wide open, she was going to call out for her big sister but now she’s dumbstruck by what she is seeing.
‘That’s impossible! How could it be them?’ Even though she wanted to deny that, her eyes were clearly not lying to her, those two were certainly Lucy and Arthur, just by their eyes one can be sure of their identity, plus, someone with Lucy’s beauty and appearance cannot be found anywhere.
She landed a couple of meters behind Wuji and hesitantly said
Lucy was merely staring at Sonia with eyes full of killing intent, although she promised Mary to not kill her that didn’t mean she forgave this woman, after all, she was the cause of everything, perhaps she was ordered but she did that willingly, or at least that’s what it was said.
Arthur was also conscious and saw the incoming Sonia, he hated her guts, just looking at her made him enraged yet again, if he wasn’t injured maybe he would not have been able to control himself and would have already killed her, it’s truly a pity those damn black chains injured him, furthermore, he saw how that black clothed woman stopped Lucy’s punch which could turn an adult dragon into minced meat.
He honestly felt cautious toward her, just by what happened earlier he already concluded she is very strong, at least she would be equal to Lucy if not stronger, he only saw her stop a punch so he can’t judge her strength unless he fought her himself, he tried appraising but the damn system wouldn’t respond.
Fortunately, his vitality was no joke and the visible injuries were healing at a speed that the naked eye can see, the only problem is the crushed organs and bones which will take a few hours to heal or regenerate so he can’t fight right now.
For someone like Anastassia who was a clan master for few years and had good guessing, she immediately knew that this silver-haired woman is Lucy, who the clan ordered to kill and that man is certainly her comrade, Arthur.
However, something doesn’t add up, those two should be dead by ‘judgement’ 1 year ago and with their previous strength, they shouldn’t be able to survive moreover, she sensed how strong the punch of Lucy is and for someone to improve like this in a year is unbelievable.
She knew Lucy was merely a student in the academy and was considered a genius, but no matter how talented a person is, they can’t just power up like this in just a year, that’s heaven-defying.
Lucy ignored Sonia who was looking at her with eyes full of disbelief and returned next to Arthur checking his body.
Arthur nodded at her reassuringly and used his right hand which could barely move to stroke Saly’s back to comfort her, this little girl soaked his chest with tears, she really seemed afraid to lose him which moved him a lot.
As silent ruled over and no one talked, a streak of blue lightning struck at Sonia.
Astrith was basically linked with Arthur so he could feel how much his master hates his woman and want to kill her, so even without receiving an order, he launched an attack.
With insane speed he jumped at her intending to finish her off, he was already in his lightning form, his appearance looked threatening and ferocious, even Anastassia frowned but didn’t show any trace of surprise.
The streak of blue lightning was dispelled by Anastassia who appeared in front of her little sister, she was already grasping one of her daggers and looked angrily at the incoming beast.
Soon, the two of them engaged in a fight, albeit Astrith’s low stats compared to Lucy, his fighting was domineering, he would open his mouth and attack with some sort of yellow beam of lightning but to his surprise, it was easily blocked by the black clothed woman.
She merely waved her dagger around and the attacks would vanish as if nothing happened, however, he didn’t give up, his attacks were focused only on Sonia.
Naturally, Arthur saw Astrith’s action, but he didn’t stop him, he wanted to see what will be the outcome of this battle.
Astrith created two other clones of himself and rushed at the standing Anastassia, after some exchanges, he deemed to be hopeless to aim at Sonia so he switched his focus to this black clothed woman.
None of his attacks did anything to her and she seemed not be fighting seriously so he could only use trump card.
In seconds, the bright sky darkened and clouds covered the sky, blue lightning streaks hit him endlessly and his body became twice it’s original size, he now had two big wings made of yellow lightning and sharp teeth which looked terrifying.
Arthur was surprised as he didn’t know Astrith could do that, still, he didn’t stop him and continued to watch as Lucy already helped him adjust him and lean on her to feel more comfortable.
This time, Anastassia furrowed her brows as she looked at new form of the lightning beast, she felt a bit of pressure from him which surprised her a little, for someone with her level of strength to feel pressure is very rare, so that only indicated one thing; this beast is strong, very strong!
For the first time, she was the one to attack, she seemed to disappear from her location and appear in front of the beast, however, it was not teleportation, she was just too fast so that seemed like teleportation.
Astrith was astonished by this by he didn’t dare daze off, several streaks of lightning were aimed at her as he backed away but to his surprise, his left wing was somehow cut and he couldn’t even see her wave her dagger.
The streaks of lightning hit her but they didn’t do any damage, she just rushed at the beast yet again to attack.
With no way to escape, Astrith decided to go all out and gamble on it, he opened his large mouth and in just a split second, a red beam which didn’t look like lightning came out of it and was aimed at the incoming enemy.
The red beam was even faster than Anastassia which surprised her, she couldn’t help but turn serious, she took out her second dagger and in a strange manner, she slashed both of them which resulted in two black arcs coming out of the daggers.
The beam and the black arcs crashed into each other, the sound was ear deafening but there was no damage to surroundings as fortunately both Anastassia and Astrith were fighting high in the sky.
The red beam resisted the two arcs for 20 seconds or so before it vanished while two arcs continued forward until they struck Astrith and cut him in four pieces, he was immediately killed as for Anastassia, she was merely pushed back a little by the impact as it was closer to her than the beast.
Though she only needed to attack seriously once, she didn’t dare think that this beast is weak, if she wasn’t here, that beast could easily kill Wuji, maybe he can’t face all the elders alone but there was still Lucy.
After she sighed and prepared to head down, she suddenly stopped and a look of surprise appeared on her emotionless face, it’s rather rare for her to be surprised multiple times in a short amount of time but this time she really was stunned.
She reached her hand to her cheek only to find a 1 inch cut on it as some blood leaked from it, it was most certainly a cause of the red beam but what’s strange is that she didn’t notice it hitting her cheek, perhaps it was due to the impact but it was highly unlikely, she couldn’t help but feel a bit of admiration for this beast as even though he was leagues weaker than her, he managed to make her attack seriously and even injure her albeit being a mere cut.
She soon went back near Wuji and her sister who was still dumbfounded by the fight a moment ago and became more so when she saw the cut on her sister’s cheek, even Wuji couldn’t help but feel fearful toward that blue lightning beast.
As for Arthur, he only sighed as he somehow expected an outcome like this, he didn’t think Astrith was this strong, he really was extraordinary, never did he regret having him by his side, as for his death, it doesn’t really matter as he can summon him again after the cooldown is done, maybe it will be not Astrith but he got a strong feeling it would still be the same beast.
“Sonia… we meet at last, very glad to see you.”
Arthur spoke sarcastically to Sonia who was awakened by his voice, she turned her head to look at him was a surprised and complex look.
“A-Arthur… How are you alive?”
“Again with that question… that’s in the past, more importantly, we have some matters to talk about… however, it’s really a pity, if I didn’t promise your friend, I assure you, you would have already been dead by now”
As he said that, Arthur stared coldly at the beauty as his killing intent began to spread but it was unexpectedly overwhelmed by the killing intent coming from Anastassia who was looking at Arthur with a piercing gaze.
"T-Talk about what?"
Sonia asked with a confused look hanging on her face, it was totally different from her usual demeanor.
"You still have the nerf to say that? Did you already forget what you did?"
Although he said that, Sonia was still as confused as ever, she looked dumbly at Arthur not knowing how to answer.
Anastassia put her daggers down and retorted
"There is nothing to talk about, I have decided to spare you, go back to where you came from."
Then she turned around to walk away seemingly not caring anymore, however, to her surprise, Arthur burst out in laughter for a couple of seconds before speaking
"Ha ha ha! Spare us? What a joke! I will NOT leave this place until I find out WHO WANTED US DEAD!"
Suddenly, Arthur who was leaning on Lucy stood up and his killing intent resurfaced again, but this time it was many times stronger and thicker, as if it would suffocate anyone, his eyes turned jet black as he stared at Anastassia who was also looking back at him.
Anastassia was perplexed now, the matter behind that 'order' is quite complicated so she gave them a way out but he refused to leave to it left her in a dilemma on whether to finish them off now or do something else.
After a couple of seconds of thorough thinking, she sighed and said
"..... Alright, as you wish, since you want to know what happened then follow me, it's better to talk inside.."
She didn't want to cause a bigger commotion, plus she knew that dealing with him and Lucy would not be that easy, probably Lucy alone can be defeated by her but if he attacked too it would be troublesome, she noticed his current state but regardless of that, deep in her heart she felt that fighting him now will only lead to disastrous results.
Arthur gazed at her surprised for a couple of seconds, he didn't think she would easily accept, he held some suspicions as maybe she would ambush him, nevertheless, he followed her with Lucy and Saly.
Lucy was already holding Saly as they followed behind Arthur.
Sonia and Mary were with each other and Wuji was next to Anastassia, all of them entered the pagoda as for the few female disciples who were present, they soon dispersed but they all knew they must keep what happened a secret or else the only way out is death.
In a certain Palace which was entirely white, there was no decoration whatsoever, it was literally empty.
There was a middle-aged man sitting on a similarly white chair with a kneeling woman in front of him, she seemed to be afraid of him as she didn't dare raise her head and look at him in the eye.
"Explain what happened.."
Although he only said 3 words, the woman knew by his tone that he seemed irritated and that was definitely not a good sign.
"Lord Kem, I found what you were looking for, however, I was interrupted by someone.."
The man slammed his fist on the chair angrily and retorted
"Don't dawdle around like that, explain clearly, don't make me angrier than I already am!"
The woman trembled yet again and replied with a somewhat shaky voice
"Y-yes.. It was a skeleton... I don't know how but it used some kind of vortex to throw completely out of the lower realm, it even erased my memories about which planet it was..."
"A skeleton you say? Fool! Can't even finish a simple job! That staff is beyond important and you lost it just like that, DO YOU EVEN KNOW HOW LONG I HAVE BEEN SEARCHING FOR IT? I only sensed it's existence again a year ago, and in the lower realm too, just how is it there..."
The woman only stayed silent and waited for the man's orders, after a couple of minutes of silence, he waved his hand indicating for her to leave so without delay she left without speaking and left the man alone pondering about something.
'Almost...I almost got it....'
In an endless dark void where you cannot see anything but stars far away, there was a man flying around and laughing maniacally, he seemed to be crazy but if one knew him they would certainly know he is enraged.
'X' searched for his 'subject' for quite some time now but he never found it, not even a trace of him, it's like he doesn't even exist anymore, he even managed to somehow return to Earth but he was not there, what angered him is not losing Arthur but what's inside him, he spent millions of years if not more creating that with the help of some luck so losing it like that angered him to the extreme.
It just didn't seem logical for him to disappear like that, he should have been reincarnated to the designed planet, so how come he isn't there?
He searched his whole area but to no avail he found nothing, even in the neighboring areas he wasn't there, this left 'X' astonished, if he wanted to search everywhere for him that would take a LOT of time but that's the only solution so he began roaming randomly into planets and searching them one by one, of course, he instructed Belos and his other subordinates to the same and immediately inform him if they find anything suspicious or even a trace of that bastard.
'You won't run away... Arthur, don't forget I have something you need...don't forget'