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427 The Brutal and the Swordsman Part 1

    To the senate, the arrival of the Swordsman was both a welcome and unwelcome surprise. While his power and fame could easily match that of the Mindhive, the fact that he brandished a sword which bled its owner's blood and wielded a power that was beyond anyone's comprehension, made the Swordsman one of the most mysterious figures in the universe.

    Unfortunately, they needed him more than they would be willing to admit.

    While the senators had no doubt that the grand judges would be able to obliterate the Brutal, due to the unpredictability of the gifts of Iewah's children, the only way to ensure their death, was by having them face one of their own, and since their original plan to send the Mindhive against the Brutal had failed, they were left with no other choice.

    Iewah had decided that dealing with the entity which had stolen one of his gifts was for the Swordsman to do, and even if the government disagreed, they would not be able to pick and choose amongst his children anymore.

    After reluctantly accepting the Swordsman's request, those assigned to this task were ordered to assemble.

    -----

    Two days later, Alcazar's atmosphere.

    Floating a few hundred meters outside of Alcazar's atmosphere, were three individuals. One of them was the Swordsman, who patiently and quietly waited for the last members of their party to arrive, while the other two, were a man and a woman in Grand Judge clothes.

    Seemingly bothered by this assignment, the male judge hid his gaze underneath his long black hair, which were unable to completely hide his opened mouth, as he sighed in annoyance every few minutes. This man's posture was slightly curve, and his lanky build showed that, despite his tall stature and wide shoulders, he spent more time bent on a desk reading, than he did with a weapon in his hand, or training in martial arts.

    By his waist, hung a gavel-shaped hammer made by compressed starcore steel, an extremely solid metal which was known to only form during the implosion of a blue giant star.

    During the implosion of the star, its metallic content would press together so tightly, that the molecules which formed the metal and flames would merge into a compound, forging the most durable and resistant metal known in the universe. Only a giant blue star possessed the temperature and mass to create starcore steel, and the possibility of some of it to form, was directly dependent on the metal present within the star.

    Ever since the metal's discovery, only enough of it to produce three weapons had been found.

    The woman judge appeared to be the complete opposite, and underneath her short scorching-red hair which were too short to hide the pale complexion of her face, was a small nose, and cheekbones covered by freckles. She showed a polite smile to anyone who looked at her.. Especially her judge companion, which found this behaviour extremely annoying.

    Hanging from her waist was a double-edged sword made of the same material as the weapon of her male companion, and around her neck, was an extremely thin yet very resistant thread, which hung a dull white pearl right underneath her clavicles.

    "I cannot even imagine the amount of wrinkles you'll develop after a hundred thousand years of unceasing smiling." Said the annoyed judge after briefly looking at his happy looking companion.

    From the outside, the female judge did not appear to be annoyed by her male companion's words, but as soon as he finished speaking, her smile widened, showing her pearly white teeth, and she said, "I am surprised that you can still look up at my face with that curved back of yours. It is a good thing that you have already started practicing your cane walk."

    For the past hour and a half, the two grand judges gave the Swordsman no doubt that, while the two were not actually on bad terms, some sort of rivalry caused them to verbally attack one another at every chance they got. However, he did not care about that. Instead, his gaze was directed at the emptiness of space. The only time his eyes had moved over the body of the female judge, was when one of her sudden movements had caused the dull white pearl to fall out of her bust.

    However, after a single look at this pearl, he had gone back to mind his own business.

    About two hours later, the spatial essence that was directly in front of the three slowly started to turn into metal and wooden essence, which in turn, compressed into a medieval door with elegant decoration, and a golden pommel.

    This door quickly opened, showing the figure of the explorer Krit, and a blonde tall man who quietly followed behind him.

    The appearance of the first individual left no particular impression on the judges, who were at the peak of their governmental faction, while Krit was only one explorer amongst many. However, the appearance of Jerigh was different. Not only were the two judges extremely interested in seeing the much talked about man with the legendary survivor's gift, but so was the Swordsman, who after noticing the two single edged swords by Jerigh's waist, and the feeling which he emanated, forced on his face the very first smile of his entire life.

    The characters of the two were incredibly similar, but while the Swordsman lived by his sword and his own enjoyment, Jerigh wielded his swords with nothing but the wish to gain enough power to go back to his friends, whom he was unsure whether they were still alive or not.

    Just like the Swordsman noticed Jerigh, Jerigh noticed him as well, feeling all of the pressure that the sharp features of this son of Iewah emitted.

    "Young man, I have heard so much about you. A future explorer of our government, and once you retire, one of us." Said the female grand judge before even welcoming the arrival of Krit, and a confused and unaware Jerigh.

    Jerigh responded to the woman's words with a simple bow. In his mind, on the other hand, were thoughts of gaining enough contribution to grant him a request. To be allowed to go back to the person whom he has sworn his loyalty to. Daniel the Outcast.

    The male grand judge did not appear to be too interested about Jerigh's arrival, and instead of greeting him, he straightened his back, and said, "Since we are all here, let's get this over with." He then threw a fingernail sized ring in the space in front of him.

    Instead of keeping on traveling, the ring stopped a hundred meters away, and began to spin so fast, that its attrition with the microscopic molecules of dust that were everywhere in the outer atmosphere of Alcazar, caused it to shine with thousands of sparks.

    This minuscule ring slowly became bigger and bigger, until finally, it reached the size of two hundred meters in diameter.

    An inexperienced cultivator would wonder why five individuals would require such a huge portal, but anyone with a decent comprehension of space travel and essence comprehension, would know that the bigger the distance the portal covered, the bigger the connection needed to be in order to prevent it from shattering somewhere in the middle.

    As soon as the portal opened, the Swordsman walked in without waiting for any word of caution or command. He was there to kill the Brutal, and nothing else. Following him were the two judges, who suddenly lost their respectively annoyed and happy state of mind, and became extremely serious.

    It was now time for Jerigh and Krit to enter, but before the former could cover the distance, he was stopped by the explorer, who placed his right hand over Jerigh's right shoulder, and said, "I think it was a mistake to send you here.. At least now. You have an amazing future, but only as long as you stay alive. If worse comes to worst, and your instinct tells you to run.. Follow it."

    As Krit finished speaking, Jerigh nodded his head faintly, and followed the three into the portal.

    When Jerigh reappeared on the other side of the portal, he found himself in front of what appeared like an asteroid made completely of chunks of flesh, blood, and bones, and with a size big enough to cause a catastrophic event in case of a collision.

    Next to him, were the two judges who for the first time, had started to feel worried about their assignment.

    What they did not know, was the fact that while the sight was a shocking one, the fear they were feeling was not out of their own true feelings, but was accentuated by one of the powers of the brutal system, which awakened in one person's mind the primal fear of blood and pain that flushed into the mind of someone that witnessed to this sort of spectacle for the first time.

    The Swordsman, on the other hand, was able to ignore this effect and immediately land in the red world, sinking his bare feet ten centimeters into a lake of blood, and resting over the feeling of fresh meat.

    Luckily for Jerigh, his brutal upbringing had been enough to completely desensitize him from the sight of blood, allowing him to keep his composure, as opposed to the grand judges, who had spent the majority of the last tens of thousands of years, closed into an office, meeting politicians, and giving orders to normal judges.

    The moment the Swordsman landed on the asteroid, his surroundings were cut into extremely thin strips, which soon after, merged back together.

    "There is more than one of you! HA! I am starting to love this dimension." Said a playful-sounding disembodied voice. At the same time, the pool of blood started to evaporate into a thin mist.

    From its appearance, this mist of blood seemed harmless, but the moment each molecule of blood started to attach itself onto the body of the Swordsman, Jerigh realized that that was not the case.

    These molecules of blood engulfed the Swordsman, covering his entire body with a layer of fresh blood, but just as this blood tried to seep into his body, from each pore of the Swordsman's skin oozed out his sword intent. A power so sharp that it was able to cut the control over the blood used by the Brutal.

    Thrown in every direction, the droplets of blood dissipated into a thin mist which would never be controlled again.

    "Oh, yes! You are much more powerful than this sack of flesh was." Said the disembodied voice as the surface of the bloody pool curved upwards, and from it emerged a thin man with loose robes which looked like they would fall at any moment, leaving him naked.

    While this happened, the defensive action of the Swordsman was able to cut into two the effect that was forcing the two judges into a state of fear and shock.

    The two judges were quick to recover, and after sharing a nod, they activated the power of their gifts, which allowed them to quickly gather a portion of the power of every other judge in the universe to fuel their own.

    Only seconds after, the two pointed their opened hands at the figure of the Brutal, and closed them.

    The pressure on the body of the Brutal was inhuman, and caused his flesh to tear apart like a red rose that bloomed in an instant. His bones immediately turned into dust, and his soul dissipated into nothingness.

    The only thing that remained was a wisp of consciousness, which shockingly enough, they had found themselves unable to remove from existence.

    "Little ants, I can feel your bodies age from over here.. Hehe." Said the wisp of consciousness as a terrifying mental power started to emerge from its depths. "How many centuries of your lives did you waste, just for a pointless attack?! HAHA! I bet you won't.. You won't dare to.. Oh."

    The tone of the wisp of consciousness suddenly changed, turning from one of enjoyment, to one of curiosity. His nose had finally perceived Jerigh, and on him, he had smelled the scent of the two little mice he had traveled through dimensions to look for.

    "Hello there.."
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