Chapter 253: Misunderstanding?
Soaring through the sky in front of a force of thousands of saints and gazing down upon familiar landscapes, recalling past battles fought and hardships overcome, Zhang felt a sense of pride in his achievements. A sense of pride that was quickly overwhelmed by a sense of anger and rage.
To have their glory, their exploits and their achievements stolen from them while they were not even there to witness it, anyone would be furious, let alone Zhang.
“Make sure to not kill this Liu Bang fellow, I have to skin him alive and hang him up in front of Aurora’s gates for all to see…” Zhang’s voice projected into the minds of all of those who were present.
As time went by and after the scenery below began to blend together and pass in a blur, the sight of a magnificent city brimming with splendor soon reached Zhang's eyes.
“My flying fortress…” Zhang mumbled as his eyes gazed past the familiar looking gates of Aurora and into the city’s residential area where a massive mountain-like mass could be seen. Laying on its side with many large chunks scattered about, Zhang’s Sky Fortress, Aurora’s Imperial Academy, was in shambles.
“Tho-those are my soldiers…” Zhang muttered as his brow twitched, the moment he caught sight of a few dozen bodies garbed in Aurora’s standard armor dangling off the imperial city walls.
“Surround the city! Kill every and all saints who try to leave! No one is to be allowed to exit! Cut down those men hanging from the imperial city walls! Wait for my signal before moving in...” Zhang commanded as his body suddenly flickered through the air, toward the imperial city where he sensed a large number of saints were currently residing.
“I, Zhou Zhang, crown prince of Aurora has returned! You lot of rats who dared to nest in my home, SCRAM!” Zhang said in a loud voice filled with anger, a voice that echoed throughout the city and into the ears of all of the citizens of Aurora.
In a flash, countless eyes gazed upward into the sky and toward Zhang. Moments ago, these gazes have been void of life and filled with sorrow, however the instant Zhang’s words reached them, flames of hope were ignited. Sadly, these flames of hope were quickly extinguished as scenes of horror seeped out from the dark corners of everyone’s minds.
Scenes of the symbol of Aurora’s might, the Sky Fortress, falling from the sky, scenes of hundreds of mighty figures looming up above and scenes of the powerful armies of Aurora being forced on to their knees.
Remembering these past horrors, many of the people of Aurora began to pray and beg for Zhang to leave. In their hearts, the crown prince of the empire had become an indomitable figure, however they felt that the might displayed by the invaders was simply too great for a single person to stand up against.
“Are you the so called crowned prince we’ve been hearing so much about?” A mocking voice echoed through the air as a lone figure rose into the sky above the imperial city, looking at Zhang with disdain.
Before long a dozen or so more figures joined the first, in a flash Zhang found himself encircled by thirty lesser saints who all had smug looks on their faces.
Perhaps if these people knew of the thousands of saints currently surrounding the outskirts of the city then they would look at Zhang in a new light, however as things stood they still believed that Zhang was but a mere lesser saint like themselves.
In the end, there was simply not enough information regarding Zhang, he had no exploits outside of the warring states region and when compared to other saints he had not been around for very long.
“Get on your knees, apologize and perhaps we will spare your life.” A lesser saint garbed in a blue robe said while laughing.
“Even if you got on your knees and apologized, I'll still kill you so just die…” Zhang mumbled as a ripple of energy emanated from his body and a semitransparent sphere enveloped the area around him.
Once the thirty lesser saints were enveloped within Zhang’s divine domain they felt an oppressive aura wrap around their bodies and writhe all of the air out of their lungs.
Casually waving his hand and employing the powers of the Underworld Heart, Zhang conjured thirty delicate looking crystal swords that released a subtle hum as they shot through shot air.
Without the power to flee nor the power to resist, the thirty lesser saints soon fell lifelessly toward the ground as Zhang’s crystal swords pierced through their hearts and flooded their veins with the Underworld Heart’s purplish essence.
Under Zhang’s influence, the thirty lesser saints were pumped full of essence from the Underworld Heart and their bodies had completely crystallized by the time they smashed into the ground, where they exploded into countless bits and pieces.
Not even sparing a glance Zhang proceeded toward the imperial city once again after dispelling his divine domain.
“Judging from your response, I take it you lot of rats aren't willing to leaving!? So be it, I'll have you join your friends soon enough.” Zhang asked in a loud tone, pointing out that he had already dispatched of the thirty lesser saints.
“Don't get too cocky just because you could deal with those small fries, any one of us here can do the same.” A voice rang through Aurora City once again as roughly a hundred silhouettes flew into the air.
“In front of me you are all the same…” Zhang said as he flickered through the air, appearing in front of one of the silhouettes before withdrawing the Rising Moon Sword from his interspatial ring and causing blood to rain down onto the ground below.
Invoking a dance like slaughter, Zhang continually flickered across the air, appearing in front of enemies at random and claiming their life. Utilizing agile movements, and skillful swing, along with a bit of a half-deity’s power, Zhang was able to cut down nearly fifty of the one hundred silhouette that had ascended into the sky in no time at all.
“Ho-how can a full saint be so powerful!” One of Zhang’s opponents said in a frantic tone as he watched those around him plummet from the air and shatter into millions of pieces on the ground.
“You fool! He’s obviously a high saint! How else would he be slaughtering us with such ease?” Someone else cried, mere movements before Zhang appeared in front of him and slashed off his head.
“If things continue on like this it may seem like I'm using my power to bully people weaker than me.” Zhang thought with a chuckle as he continued on his way toward Aurora’s imperial city once again.
By now, all of the eyes that had been glued to the sky, all of the citizens of Aurora, were dumbfounded by Zhang’s power.
In actuality, for the most part none of Aurora’s citizens had ever had the chance to watch Zhang in battle and all they've ever heard were legends and tales of his achievements. So being able to witness, first-hand, the power of Aurora’s legendary crown prince, all of the citizens of Aurora could not help but watch with gaping mouths.
With each body that fell from the sky, with each and every corpse that shattered across the ground, Zhang’s myths were ever so more coming to life right in front of the eyes of all of the people within Aurora City.
“Where is this so-called emperor of saints? Don't have the guts to come out and face me? Are you so afraid that you have to send out weaklings to buy time for you to flee with your tail between your legs?” Zhang said in a loud and mocking voice.
“Insolent rogue! The likes of you are not worthy of even mentioning brother Liu Bang, nonetheless insult him!” A partially bald man with a wild looking beard said as he and a few hundred lesser saints, full saints and high saints flew into the sky above the imperial city.
“Brother Fu Wen, why get angry at this frog in a well. Although I applaud him for being able to become a high saint, it's quite laughable that he thinks he could stand up to us.” A man garbed in golden robes said while looking at Zhang with a haughty look on his face.
“Till the end, fools will remain fools. Blind to the truth that is laid out right in front of their eyes.” Zhang thought while shaking his head.
“I should applaud the lot of you for thinking you can stand up to me with such measly numbers.” Zhang said mockingly as he snapped his fingers.
Like the sound of war drums, the sound of Zhang’s snapping fingers reverberated through the air and in the following moments an awe-inspiring spectacle began. Blotting out the sky and blocking the sun like arrows, thousands of saints quickly made their way into Aurora City and surrounded Liu Bang and the imperial city.
“What the…” A few of Liu Bang’s men muttered as they found themselves surrounded by thousands of enemies.
“Laughable, isn't it?” Zhang said to his wives who had just arrived beside him as he released his divine aura to its full extent, putting the surrounding area under his influence.
“Th-this is a divine do-domain…” Liu Bang and Fu Wen both said in a stutter the moment they were enveloped within Zhang’s divine domain.
“Oh, so you know what comes next right?” Zhang said with a chuckle while twirling the rising moon sword playfully in one hand.
“You think I'll be afraid of you because you’re a half-deity?” Liu Bang said despite showing a face full of panic.
“Of course, I think you'll be afraid of me because I'm a half-deity.” Zhang said with a laugh.
“I'll let you know that we are from the Divine Tempest Realm and soon enough a large number of experts from my sect will arrive here in this lesser plane to look for us. If anything were to happen to me or senior brother Liu Bang they would have your head.” Fu Wen said in a slightly shaken voice.
“Darling, look at how afraid that one is. I don't think it'll be much longer before he soils himself.” Lingqi said in a tone full of ridicule while chuckling.
“Sis, I think you’re right, judging from how much their legs are shaking I don't think it'll be long either.” Ling said with a laugh.
“I feel bad for the people down below.” Ai chuckled.
“Now now, let's stop teasing them, can't you tell that you’re embarrassing them?” Yuying said sarcastically while laughing.
“Younger brother, I believe there has been a misunderstanding between us. I had heard very many of your exploits and have come to hold great respect for you, hoping to be acquainted with you, I had sent my subordinates to welcome you, however they misunderstood my words. I apologize for any trouble they may have caused you.” Liu Bang said while a shameless smile on his face.
“Is that so?” Zhang asked.
“Yes, everything was a misunderstanding. How about we all go inside and have a drink of wine. Since you are back now I won’t have to stay and protect this place any longer.” Liu Bang said.
“If everything was a misunderstanding would you care to explain why my soldiers, the soldiers of the Aurora Empire were being hung from Aurora’s imperial city’s walls?” Zhang asked with a sneer.
“Those soldiers were plotting a coup against the empire so I had to punish and make an example out of them or else chaos would have swept across the land.” Liu Bang said with a shameless expression plastered on his face yet again.
“This fellow doesn’t know what face nor pride is…” Yuying muttered in a low snicker to the other beauties.
“Yea I’m amazed someone could be so shameless.” Ling replied in a low whisper as she slightly chuckled.
“Since it seems like everything had been a misunderstanding, I thank you for keeping watch over my empire and bid you safe travels on your trip.” Zhang said with a smile as he gestured for Liu Bang to leave, much to the latter’s joy.
“I bid you farewell, brother Zhou Zhang.” Liu Bang said with a chuckle before he realized a translucent crystal blade had embedded itself into his chest.
“Next time I visit father in law I will pay you a visit.” Zhang said as he waved his hand, signaling the beginning of a slaughter.