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497 War on Two Fronts

    Despite the disadvantage in numbers, and the overall equality in cultivation all throughout the field, the battle was a one-sided one. As members of Daniel's group, the participants from his side were significatively stronger than cultivators at the same level. A gap that could not be filled through sheer numbers.

    This advantage in battle prowess was not something that could be felt by the blood cultivators, as opposed to the lower numbers of Daniel's side, which made the blood cultivators confident enough to give up any form of strategy. It was this misconception that, along with the urgency of being the first one to obtain the blood inheritance, and the lack of information regarding Daniel caused by the absence of survivors that could tell the story, had led many groups of blood cultivators to their death.

    Not unlike any previous one, this battle was over in minutes, with Daniel and his companions surrounded by droplets of blood, chopped up body pieces, and charred bodies which floated in outer space like the most gruesome of sights.

    -----

    As soon as this battle ended, instead of going back like always, the leaders of the four planets approached the lone figure of Daniel, who was staring at the depths of space absentmindedly. "Daniel, we need to talk about something." Said Inos, the former War God, and ruler of the human faction under Daniel.

    Daniel maintained his pensive state, and only after a few minutes he reacted to Inos's words by opening a small portal that led to a brightly lit room with nothing but a table and a few chairs in it. He then walked through it along with Jerigh and Sewah. Nova, Inos, Xargy, and the leader of the beastmaster clan, the selected representative of hell's demons, followed right after.

    Once everyone took their seat at the table, Inos turned to look at Daniel, and said, "The attacks are becoming more frequent, and soon, the war between the elemental faction and the spiritual faction will end. Same for the war between the former universal government and the blood cultivators.. At that point, we might have to face the opposition of more than one group. At the same time if we are unlucky."

    After Inos finished speaking, Daniel's friends and followers remained quiet.. waiting for him to recognize the possibility that the warrior had presented. However, after two long minutes of silence, Nova added, "We have talked about it, and we came to the conclusion that it would be better for us to move."

    Once again the group turned quiet, hoping for him to say something, but yet again, Daniel said nothing, forcing Nova to break the silence one more time by adding, "Edmund and I have been experimenting with multidimensional travel, and we think that we might be able to keep us constantly on the move. That would make it nearly impossible for the blood faction and the spiritual cultivators to follow us."

    "We are not going anywhere." Responded Daniel, clearly against the idea.

    "Is this because of Der and Roley? I thought you had lost track of them four years ago. We have tried to find them ever since you came back from the spiritual world.. We don't even know if they are still alive." Said Xargy with a matter-of-fact tone.

    Ever since Daniel had recovered Alesia's spirit from the spiritual world, he and his companions had started to look for the last two members of his group, Roley, and Der. This search had gone smoothly at first, and had led them halfway from finding the latter of the two, but for a reason unknown to either Daniel, Sewah, or every other children of Iewah which they had interrogated through the years, both of them had turned into entities that could not be traced by one of Destiny's systems.

    Hopeful that the previous predictions of the system were still useful, Daniel and his companions tried to find Der at the point in space and time in which he should have died, but when they had arrived, there was no trace of Der, or of the battle that should have caused his death. Daniel considered that event as the first time that one of the predictions of his system had been wrong, but with time, he quickly realized that that was the wrong way of seeing it. After all, the prediction was once right, but had been changed into a different destiny by the subject.

    In search of an explanation for this, Daniel had tried to look for the figure of Iewah, the aspect of Destiny which had granted him and many others free control over their predetermined fate. But, unfortunately, ever since Daniel's universe had been opened to the multiverse, Iewah had disappeared, leaving Daniel to chase ghosts.

    "Dan, their names are not in the list of your followers anymore.. You know for a fact that they would have never left your side.." Added Aeron, implying that now that both Roley and Der could not be found amongst the members of Daniel's group system, it was more likely that they had died, than simply disappeared. Unfortunately, this could not be confirmed, as any attempt from Daniel to enter the underworld in search for their consciousness, or to sneak into the spiritual world in hope to find their spirits, had been blocked by the aspects of Death and Spirit.

    "It isn't just about them." Responded Daniel before finally lifting his gaze from his entwined fingers. He then added, "As long as we are in this universe, I am the limit of power of our enemies.. But if we enter a dimension whose natives are past the godhood stage, we will be wiped out in the blink of an eye."

    Already aware that Daniel would bring this up, Nova said, "We can jump into destroyed dimensions then. Nobody will come looking for us there, and unless we are unlucky enough to step into a dimension with a lone blood cultivator that can sense the mark on your head, we'll be fine."

    The idea of Daniel's followers was well thought out, and worked in theory, but only because they had given up on finding Der and Roley. That detail had separated them from Daniel who, by abandoning the two companions he had lost almost a decade ago, would feel like he had left his friends behind, and disappointed a lot of people who, just like Edmund and Lucious had in the past, counted on him to bring back their friends and family.

    Daniel kept discussing with his companions the idea of turning their system into a nomad formation that could travel through dimensions for hours, but in the end, he couldn't bring himself to accept their proposition. The most he could do was to ask them to turn this idea into a feasible project before asking him again. With that, he hoped to gain enough time to find his friends.

    -----

    Many millions of lightyears away, right at the border of the territory of the group formerly known as the universal government, a large-scale war was taking place.

    On the two opposite sides of this war were the red robed cultivators of the blood clan, who had spent the last few years establishing their presence into the universe. And the former armies of the universal government, the thousand of explorers, now back from their individual expeditions, and the judges.

    This conflict was fought on an extremely vast portion of space, and had continued for over a year.

    In one of these specific battles, the universal government was defending a system inhabited by mortals, that had been eyed by the blood cultivators. If left unprotected, the billions of humans that inhabited these planets would be exterminated, and turned into cultivation resources for the younger generation of the blood clan.

    This battle was being fought just outside of the gravitational pull of the system's sun.

    The side of the immortal cultivators was composed by a few thousand immortal cultivators at the peak of the high immortal stage, who stood in formation like a trained division of soldiers, ready to charge at any given moment. On the side of the blood cultivators, on the other hand, were half a dozen young men and women, each with no more than a hundred blood cultivators at the early and mid godhood stage that acted as their personal guards. Each of these six young blood cultivators was the inheritor of one of the universes that belonged to the aspect of Sacrifice, and their method to gain cultivation resources was to invade one universe after the other, and exterminate its inhabitants one planet at a time, turning them into the blood essence they needed to practice the path of blood.

    The two groups were observing one another in hope to gauge each other's strength before the battle began.

    From the perspective of someone who knew the politics of the former universal government, it was clear that the immortal cultivators acted differently from before. The infighting between the three factions of the universal government had ceased, and instead, these three groups could be seen cooperating as one within this division of soldiers. This lack of hostilities had allowed for them to maintain their ground during this war despite their enemies being much more powerful. This cohesion had been a result of a change of leadership.

    "Why don't you give up? You have been losing ground to us for over a year now, why don't you call it quits? Give us your commander, and we will let the rest of you leave." Said a young man dressed in red and golden robes, and who stood on the side of the blood cultivators. His voice was sent through the thousands of miles that separated the two groups along with the image of his eyes, which shone from the distance like rhomboid-shaped blood-red stars.

    The members of the former universal government had seen this more than once before. Most of them were veterans in their war against the blood clan, and every time, one of the spoiled lords would try to intimidate them into submission. Luckily, they knew better than to run, as history showed that their words were nothing but lies, and that dying fighting was their only option.

    Seeing that his attempt at intimidation had failed, the young man scoffed in annoyance. He then turned to look at his companions, who possessed a status similar to his own, and said, "So, who takes this one?"

    To float forward was a young woman who, despite possessing a power comparable to that of a high immortal at the hundredth and ninetieth phase, was only twenty years old. This level of cultivation was a testament to the uncountable number of lives she had consumed in her very short life in order to reach such an extreme power. "I'll go, but If I win, I want them. You guys can split the planets amongst yourselves afterwards." She said in an attempt to ensure the biggest prize out of them all to her group.

    The other young nobles did not seem to mind, as in her position, they would have asked the same, so they all nodded quietly, and observed as she, along with the hundred cultivators at the godhood stage that were there to protect her, headed towards the division of immortal cultivators.

    As the young woman and her escort passed the halfway mark between her companions and her enemies, the immortal cultivators had yet to move. In her mind this could only be motivated by the fear they felt towards her escort, but her guards knew better than to let her dash ahead into a cohesive group of cultivators.

    As veteran, these blood cultivators had seen many strategies in the past, but even they were unsure of what to do when the division of immortal cultivators suddenly split into two, revealing an old man and an old woman dressed in simple elegant robes with the insignia of the judges pinned on their chest.

    If there was something that the blood cultivators had learned to fear about immortal cultivators, was what was known in Daniel's universe as a Judge. An entity capable of tapping onto the power of every other judge in existence to enforce justice against those who would break the rules.. And now, two of them were standing in front of them.

    The young woman that led this group of blood cultivators was too ignorant to understand who these two entities were, but that was not the same for the leader of her guards, who grabbed her by the arm, and prepared himself to retreat back into the larger group of blood cultivators. But, alas, he was too late, as before he could leave, the two judges, strengthened to the power of a cultivator at the late godhood stage, turned into two comets that came crashing around, and behind their group.

    The impact created a shockwave comparable to that of an exploding sun, but that lacked its heath and simply sent the blood cultivators flying away from their companions, and towards the army of immortal cultivators, which made use of the chance to advance as a unit, and kill the blood cultivators as they came crashing into their formation.

    Those that flew out of the range of the compact army of immortal cultivators were in no way more lucky, as their uncontrolled dash through space was met by the explorer, which appeared as flashes of light with the only purpose of killing any survivor before disappearing once again.

    Once the last of the blood cultivators was dead, the army's soldiers flew back in their initial formation, and the two judges went to hide behind them. Of the explorers no trace could be seen, with exception made for their victims.

    The noble young man that had spoken earlier had felt everything that had happened, and suddenly lost every desire to take this fight easily. "Everyone! Split into groups of five, don't let them separate you, and if you are thrown away, defend yourself before trying to stop your motion!" He shouted while taking control over his side, and ordering to start the assault.

    After a small nod of confirmation from their own protegee, the guards followed the orders of the young man, and advanced towards the army of immortal cultivators, but just as they came close enough to see them, "HALT!" Shouted the noble young man after noticing a man that wasn't there before. Tall, muscular, and completely covered in heavy armor. In his left hand he was holding the wounded body of the young woman.

    "Let her go, and we will leave." added the young man, aware that letting the young woman die would cause more trouble to his parents, then having to report a failure in this campaign.

    Unfortunately, the tall man was not there to discuss, as the moment the young man finished speaking, he tightened the grip he had around the young woman's head, and crushed it into a bloody pulp. He then observed the enraged young man, caught by an emotional outburst, charged towards his army along with the rest of the blood cultivators.

    "Formation twenty-two. Take the kids, kill the others." He ordered, sternly, through his heavy helmet. He then turned around, and retreated behind the formation of immortal cultivators.
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