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Chapter 879: Driving Off the Enemy

    Chapter 879: Driving Off the Enemy

    Chapter 879: Driving Off the Enemy

    Monarch's avatar saw a red light charging its way, and then suddenly found itself in a strange and terrifying new reality. The only colors were red, blue, white and turquoise and the quadra-chromatic universe shifted from one hue to another seamlessly. First the avatar's Domain shattered under the mysterious force. Then its body followed.

    The six-headed monster's first instinct upon learning it'd been tricked was to charge back into the fight. However its brazen return was halted when it saw how completely the avatar was destroyed. From its vantage the light of the swords looked like an enormous tornado. It effortlessly swallowed Monarch's representative and a moment later its companion's aura was snuffed out.

    The Creation and Destruction Domain of the aliens was unique, and all of these creatures shared a psychic link. The absence of the avatar's aura was felt immediately and acutely. It was gone, like it never existed. There wasn't even a sense of its vital crystal to be felt.

    What a terrifying attack! Even Monarch himself would fear its lethality.

    The tornado of light roared into the distance to where the remaining two Nirvana-level aliens had been trying to return to the fight. They were also devoured by the power of the swords. Nothing of them was left behind either.

    Everything stopped once the power of the four swords ripped across the battlefield. The Violet Prince's movements were sluggish, just enough for Luo Xianni to land a punch. Suddenly his body became a two-dimensional figure, transposed against the darkness of space. She followed up with a cruel barrage of blows. The Prince recovered but not without serious injury.

    With a howl of rage and terror the hydra-beast turned to flee. Their mission was a failure. If it remained here any longer it would lose its life along with its companions. Two streaks of purple flashed across the area with shocking speed, and the creatures were gone. The roar of the four Banishing Blades combined continued for a short while before gradually lapsing into silence and darkness. Lan Jue and his four companions reappeared.

    The four sword-bearers looked at one another, speechless. Their weapons had darkened, though three twinkling gems were affixed to Captus' blade. Vital crystals.

    How could this be?

    The four of them shared the same thought. Lan Qing swayed but his brother was there to steady him. The Pharmacist was also visibly exhausted from their effort. Qianlin was by her side.

    Lan Qing's brow was furrowed as he thought back to what he felt. The Pharmacist's eyes were brimming with awe. Yes, even she wasn't entirely sure what had just happened.

    The final act of their fight had been composed by Lan Qing on the fly. His aim was to weaken the enemy. Undermine their strength bit by bit until final victory could be achieved. He hadn't anticipated that the fight would change so fast, so drastically. At best he thought they might destroy Monarch's avatar, but the Banishing Blades achieved much more. What awesome power!

    Of course, it didn't come easy. Both Lan Qing and the Pharmacist were almost entirely drained of energy. Lan Jue and Qianlin had fared better, but not by much. Their victory was glorious, and forced introspection.

    The Paragons regrouped.

    If there was any doubt these four young masters could summon the Banishing Strategy, or that the swords could destroy the home worlds, that doubt was gone. What they just witnessed had overwhelmed their senses, and their sense of what was possible. And it wasn't even the Banishing Strategy! If they succeeded in laying it out against the home worlds, humanity's chances of survival were better than good.

    It was like a weight lifted off of everyone's chest. They breathed a little easier, though it could not be said any were excited. They'd won, but at the cost of Xiuxiu, the Terminator and the Pontiff.

    Defeating the alien sneak attack had cost them dearly. One of their own Nirvana-level Paragons had given their life, but at least these beasts wouldn't try such a maneuver again.

    Lan Qing scowled. His mind worked quickly, and as such was not as at ease as his compatriots. His first thought was if using the Banishing Blades was this intensive, how much energy would they need to employ the Banishing Strategy? Indeed they'd fought back today, but it was by no means certain they could successfully use the Strategy. At least not yet.

    After becoming Ultus' master Lan Qing began to learn the secret of the sword, with Li Ke's help. In their synchronized attack each of the sword-bearers had become one with their weapons. If that was any indication it meant their own energies would be the catalyst for the Banishing Stance, and if so were they strong enough to sustain it?

    "Let's head back!" Luo Xianni urged. Since Jue Di's sacrifice the joyful Photographer had become bitter.

    Depression also lived in Lan Jue's eyes. In a flash the storage device Xiuxiu had given him before she died appeared in his palm. He didn't know what was on it, but something in him didn't want to know.

    She died because of me! If she hadn't thrown herself between him and the Prince he would have been injured, maybe killed. Surely the result of this attack would have been worse than it already was. It would have been very unlikely they could hold out until Lan Qing arrived.

    With heavy hearts the Paragons returned to Middle Heaven. Lan Qing set about explaining what had happened to the various commanders, easing their worries. He carefully gave them an account of the battle.

    The rest of the Paragons rested to try and recover. Zhou Qianlin was busiest, for although she had spent a lot of energy in their fight she still went from one Paragon to another and helped heal them. Her Queen of Heaven Discipline was the only power that could do so. No one knew when the home worlds would complete their evolution, so although she was exhausted she had to make sure everyone was at their best.

    Lan Jue sat by himself in a corner, looking despondently on the only thing he had left from Xiuxiu. She was gone - slain before his eyes. It'd happened so fast, he wasn't ready.

    Her easy smile and sweet voice had been with him for years, had followed him from youth to adulthood. Visions of what they experienced together flashed through his mind in a painful procession.

    "Boss!" A cry laden with sorry called to him.

    Lan Jue turned his head. From the tear streaked faces of Mika, Lin Guoguo and Ke'er he could see they knew what had happened. Lin Guoguo had told Mika about Xiuxiu's sacrifice. They rushed to him as fast as they could.

    Mika knelt in front of him but couldn't find any words. She'd fought on Xiuxiu's behalf more than once, hoping Lan Jue would accept her the way she wanted to be accepted. But Lan Jue always had an excuse. Now their friend and sister was gone, and she didn't know what to say.

    "Boss, you can't let yourself get lost in the sadness. Our enemy is still out there. The one that killed Xiuxiu is still breathing!" Mika growled.

    She was right. The Violet Prince still lived. Xiuxiu died by his hand.

    Wordlessly Lan Jue nodded his head. He knew she was right but her words couldn't shake the anger and sadness that threatened to drown him.

    Lin Guoguo and Ke'er also huddled around. Ke'er couldn't hold back her tears and sobbed upon Lin Guoguo's shoulder. Of all the Amazons they had been closest.

    "She was sad for a long time, boss. She never said it but I could tell. All four of us like you, but her feelings ran deepest." Lin Guoguo muttered. "I lost count the number of times she cried over you. Late at night when it was quiet and she thought we were asleep she would cry. I'm a psychic, I could feel what she was feeling. Her mood would soar every time she saw you - real, powerful love. We all saw it."

    "Enough, Guoguo!" Mika said harshly. She'd said enough, and every word was like a dagger to Lan Jue's heart.

    But Lan Jue just shook his head. He spoke words full of bitter agony. "Let her speak. I knew. I always knew, but I refused to deal with it. I told myself it'd change with time. In my heart she was always my dearest sister, but I was never a worthy older brother. I never paid enough attention to her. Blame me... blame it all on me!"
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