56 – Devourer of Myths – Crimson Vengeance (Burning Rage) [Part 2]
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Looking around me, it seems that these blue bastards are still as cocky as ever. Wielding the yellow paper talismans in both my hands, I flicked of several dozens yet again as I began to rain down more spells onto the group of beasts.

"Well have a taste of this you FUCKERS!"

Rage and viciousness spilled out of my words as I released yet another torrent of spells.

GIIYYYAHHHHHHHHH!

The anguished screams of the beasts cried out as many more turned to dust. To others, it was nothing but an unpleasant and horrible sound to hear, but it is music to my ears. Their despair and suffering that is.

Drip.

A drop of blood trickled from my arm as it fell onto the ground. Looking at my arms...no entire body, I could see that blood was already leaking profusely. Not only from the orifices like my eyes, ears, mouth, and belly button. But also from my skin pores as wounds started to appears from my initially unharmed skin. A skill of self-sacrifice huh. Well if it could end this misery, any price is sufficient!

Looking up above, I looked at the countless large eyes and mouths which reached up to the sky. The gigantic mountain of flesh, eyes and mouths. That fucking bastard who toys with lives as he please, Shaggaroth!

=================

[Flashback]

"Mister, is it possible to save everyone!"

The young boy cried out in tears as he looked at the cultivator in white. The two of them were flying in the sky as they quickly passed mountains and lakes.

"No, we can't. I lack the power to defeat that beast. Moreover, I would assume the entire village is already devoured or possessed by that Core Inversion metamorphosing beast, Shaggaroth."

The cultivator replied in a helpless tone.

"Core...Inversion?"

The young boy replied back in a confused tone.

"Yes, that is the realm or strength which that beast currently resides in. Qi Gathering. Essence Foundation. Core Formation. Muscle Tempering. Organ Refining. Core Inversion. It is already that strong in the realm of cultivators. Not many could easily stand up to it."

The man explained as he went through the realms.

"What about you, mister?"

"Me? I am just a mid-Organ Refining cultivator. I would not stand any chance against its true body. Even with 5 or 10 people such as myself, we may barely stand a chance against it."

"What...that is impossible."

The boy said helplessly.

"Well, it seems hopeless for now. But do know that we humans can grow stronger. Often faster than these beasts as our lifespans are shorter. Why not train up and take revenge by yourself in the future?"

The man suggested as the two breezed past another mountain.

"Take revenge...myself."

The boy pondered as he slowly began to look at the scenery below him.

"Would I be able to achieve such strength? And how long will it take?"

The boy said with uncertainty as he looked at the mister's great strength. He could use great spells and fly in the sky. And the enemy was greater than a dozen of such a strong mister, despair welled on the child.

"It would be lying to say that you can easily achieve such strength and that it would be a short time. Perhaps, years, decades or centuries. If you live long enough, there will definitely be a chance to take Shaggaroth down."

The man said in a forlorn tone as he gaze into the distance.

"Decades, centuries...will I even live that long..."

The boy said in a downtrodden tone.

"Well, we won't know. And you don't have to fight Shaggaroth alone. When the time comes, you can have comrades to stand by your side as you guard each other's flanks while fighting against the beast together. Do sure to give this brother an invite too, I will gladly take up an invitation to end that menace if the odds are in our favor!"

The man gave a reassuring smile as the two flew off into the distance.

--

Months have passed.

The boy was now in a green robe as he carried a basket filled with dirty laundry.

"Hey hurry up, brat! The clothes aren't going to clean themselves!"

Arrogant voices came from the side. There were other older kids dressed in similar green clothes who were sitting by the side. These were all the chore disciples of the Thousand Blossom Sect. It was basically a provisional status for aspiring cultivators who failed to meet the sect's requirements but still desired to gain some resources for the meager chance of becoming a cultivator. Many of these people lacked talent or will to become a cultivator and were thus relinquished to such an undesirable position. Gan Xinjian was brought back to the Thousand Blossom Sect instead of any sects in his home country as the nearest sect was already decimated when Senior TianKun passed by. This was what spurred the sword cultivator to go and check up on the village that the young boy he met up mentioned of. It was unfortunate that he could only save a single life that encounter. But that was one more life than none.

When the young boy had his roots examined, the elder was disappointed as he had only mortal roots. This was the most common root and most people would be unable to become a cultivator with such a root since it could barely absorb any qi. The device used to examine spiritual roots was rare and thus only major sects could obtain a single of such an artifact. Minor sects would either pay the large sects for such a service or just try their luck. Xinjian's fate was sadly mediocre and thus he was initially rejected from even being a chore disciple as such big sects usually only accept fragmented roots (2nd worst quality) as chore disciples. It was only thanks to Brother Tiankun who was the sect master's main disciple that Xinjian had a chance to join the sect.

Of course, his entry through such a method was known to the other disciples through rumors and thus he was bullied upon once he entered the chore region. Still, the young boy persevered on. For that slight chance, not for glory but for revenge. He kept enduring the suffering and humiliation as he continued with his task and downed upon the tiny bits of cultivation dregs he could get.

--

"I am sorry that I am unable to help you more than that. I wish that I could use more of my power and influence to make it easier for you."

A worried voice came out.

"No need to worry, Senior Brother Tiankun. I am already grateful for you to save me and actually support me to give me the opportunity to become a cultivator!"

The young boy's voice was no longer juvenile as a young man appeared in its place. It has already been 5 years since Xinjian worked in the chore section of the Thousand Blossom Sect. Through his hard work and stringent savings, he had managed to increase his cultivation level to the third stage of Qi Gathering. Many of the other chore disciples have far surpassed his achievements and became outer disciples. Overall, his progress was deemed to be average despite his hard work. Yet, Xinjian himself was driven by a far greater motivation and did not cease cultivating.

He continued to work tirelessly in the day and cultivated hard in the night as he strived towards advancing his cultivation. It was already obvious that it was a fool's dream to beat Shaggaroth in his lifetime. 5 years and only third stage of qi gathering. He obviously would not be able to form significant results to even pose a threat against the Core Inversion boss-tier beast.

"Umm...Senior Gan."

A female cultivator with red robes approached him. This was XiaoYun. She was initially a junior chore disciple who had joined the sect a year after him. However, after some lucky encounter, her spiritual root was upgraded from fragmented to Minor Human stage. This was of course far from the level of Divine roots, but it is more than sufficient to easily become an inner disciple even in a sect like Thousand Blossoms. Xinjian had initially been the one to protect and help the young girl while she was new to the sect. He gave her advice on what skills to learn and what pills to take. This was all the knowledge he had diligently gathered over the years as he realized the shortcomings of his talents. Xinjian himself may not be gifting in cultivating, but he sure has quite a gift in the minor arts of pill refinement and artificing. He had already developed a few devices and talismans that were popular even amongst outer disciples. Many of these disciples respected him and frequented his wares and not many people dared to belittle him any longer.

"Senior Gan...w-would you please...be my D-dao companion!"

The nervous young girl said with choked words. Yet, her courage managed to allow her to transmit her message and feeling across to the slightly older young man.

"Ooooooh...."

"Wow, she has done it!"

"Senior Gan, sure has it great."

"Yeah, I am slightly jealous."

"Woo-woo."

The peanut gallery has started to murmur off. This was a public confession was it occurred in a remote plaza area. Yet, some cultivators would walk by as well. The young girl's friends were there to support her. While the passersby would either envy the lucky guy who gets confessed to or cheer on the scene. Xinjian himself was far from ugly. He may not be the handsomest out there, but he was definitely not below average. Moreover, his bravery and dedication towards his cultivation, despite how futile, had also won the hearts and admiration not a few female cultivators. XiaoYun was definitely not the first nor the last of his admirers who have professed their feelings either. Being the nice man he was, he had also treated everybody fairly and tried his best to assist and help his juniors and seniors without holding back. Still the young man scratched his cheek, before hurriedly giving a deep bow.

"I am sorry!"

The girl was slightly shocked by his words as tears welled up in her eyes.

"Wh-why...am I not pretty enough?"

The young girl cried out as her friends came out of a nearby bush and started berating him.

"I know that you have always rejected other female cultivators. But how could you do it to our Xiaoyun! She was your junior! She also has so many prospective admirers and you still chose to ignore and reject her!"

"I despise your arrogance, how could you look down on such a fair maiden!"

"Ah, such a waste! I would definitely agree!"

A small commotion occurred.

The young man kept his head bowed down, while his fists were deeply clenched. A brief feeling of sadness and regret welled in his heart as he remembered his previously uttered words. This was just but one of his numerous rejections.

--

"Man, Yunyun is so cute. Why can't you accept her?"

A young man's disapproving voice came out.

"Right. Right. You are definitely not to her level. You are only a 6.5, she is easily an 8. You should get together. Hmph!"

A young girl with azure blue hair muttered in disagreement as well.

"Hey hey, don't be rude Junior Sister Ouyang."

"What Senior Brother Tiankun! He is obviously much uglier. Of course not too ugly, but Sister Yun is really pretty. And her prospect are good as well. If not for their past history, I could never fathom why she would ever choose to confess to him. She even got rejected head-on in public!"

The seven-year-old girl muttered out in dissatisfaction.

"Junior Brother Gan has his reasons. Though such a blunt reply was really uncalled for."

Senior Brother Tiankun mentioned with a helpless sigh.

"Hmm, what reason could it be? That one could ignore such a pretty dao companion?"

The young girl inquired.

"Well, that is something private."

The man replied once again with a slight sigh.

"Hmph, you boys and all of your guy secrets!"

The little girl pouted her cheeks as she angrily stomped off.

Xinjian himself remained silent throughout the talk as he gently sipped upon his tea.

"Is it because of that?"

A voice came from the side.

"Umu-"

He gave a short and astute reply.

"So, you cannot forget about it, huh. What happened back then."

Senior Brother Tiankun looked over with a sad expression in his eyes.

"...definitely. I cannot have a dao companion or anyone dear to me suffer the pain I have to go through. I will definitely seek revenge in this lifetime. I do not want to leave behind a sad widow."

The young man said in a resolute tone as he continued to sip on his tea.

"So you are willing to forsake any chance of happiness for your revenge huh. I won't question your decision. Anyways, thank you for all the pills you have been dedicating your time to produce for the sect. It has eased our pill chamber's need to produce pills for our junior cultivators. You sure are blessed with a pill refiner's talents. It is a pity that higher-level pills require a greater cultivation base and you lack the fortune to be given talent in cultivation as well. Such a pity."

The young man gave a great sigh.

"It is okay. I am happy to pay you and the sect back for taking care of me. More importantly, Senior Brother..."

"Call me Brother Tiankun."

Xinjian was shortly interrupted by the young man.

"...Brother Tiankun, I will be leaving the sect."

"W-what!?"

The young man in white robes was shocked by the words of the yellow-robed man.

"Why, has anyone offended you or did anyone make your life difficult? Tell it to brother here and I will settle things straight!"

Tiankun said one in a serious tone, Xinjian was no longer just a child and nor a precious pill maker, but a dear brother and close friend to him. He would not allow anyone to belittle his friend any longer, now that his friend had proven himself in the field of pill making. The last person to threaten Xinjian actually got expelled by Tiankun after the threat was deemed severe enough. Now, everyone with ill intent would not even dare to approach the yellow-robed young man lest to request for pills at a fair price.

"I am going to wander about. It will both be beneficial to my pill-making and cultivation. I have enjoyed my time in the sect, but I feel limited and shackled by it."

He said out in a restricted tone.

"But..."

"I also have things I wish to test out which may break sect rules."

He added on.

"I have recently found an ancient formula which requires refining my blood and use it as a furnace to provide a life-consuming energy boost. I have traded this skill with a rogue cultivator and have tested its efficacy on myself."

"But this...this would cripple your future cultivation."

Tiankun said out in a wary tone. He did not care much about the sect rules as he knew that Xinjian would not abuse his power, and this brother of his is a just man. He worried more about the fact that such arts usually crippled one's cultivation and extinguishes one's lifespan.

"It...doesn't matter. Both you and I would know that I can never reach the heights of Shaggaroth through normal means. I can only resort to desperate measures to stand a chance."

Blood trickled from the youth's wrists as he tightly clenched his fists with his nails digging in deeply. The man in white robes looked at his junior brother before giving a light sigh and nodded.

"Alright, I will tell the elders and leader about it. Don't worry, I will persuade them without telling them anything extra. Just take care okay, and don't forget to visit us often!"

The young man said before standing up and walking out of the room. The small room only had a yellow-robed youth remaining sipping on his tea as he enjoyed this beautiful view one last time.

--

And thus the young man wandered. He ventured through many heritages, found and exchange many recipes. Created countless pills, spells, and artifacts. Years passed, then decades. He became well known to the rogue cultivator circles as one of the best Essence Foundation pill makers. He was often heralded as one who could make pills better than many Core Formation seniors who would concede upon seeing one of his fine works. The young man aged as his skin turn old and wrinkly like an 80-year-old man. He was only 57 that year and with his Essence Foundation cultivation bases, he should at most look 40. It was due to that forbidden art that he had cultivated. For a long three and almost four decades, Xinjian kept on practicing that forbidden art and stored its power inside him while using himself as a furnace.

The old man tended to visit the Thousand Blossom Sect once every three to five years, bringing with him numerous treasure pills and artifacts usable to junior cultivators. Many of the elders had probably noticed his choice of using a forbidden art but chose to turn a blind eye. He was no longer one of their disciples and was still zealously contributing despite not needing any need to. They had no reason to find fault with such a valiant young man, he must have his reasons to cultivate such an art. And sure he did. Everything, all the pain, and suffering whilst cultivating, all of it was endured for this very day.

The old man had met many comrades along the way. An innkeeper who was familiar with the arts of the sword and guqin, a monk who bears a great burden and coffin on his back, many of such cultivators formed ties with this renowned pill, talisman, and artifact maker. On the last few days before his current journey, he gazed upon the city which all the hustle and bustle traveled about. It was just another ordinary day to him, yet he was rudely interrupted as he was mixing his cauldron.

[Congratulations Host Liu Xun for signing in at the “Small Earth Immortal Shrine”. You have obtained the grey prize - a mantou (bread)!]

A weird message it was. It was one of those special existences, ones who were blessed by the Great Ones.

"But to get a mantou, huh. What a funny gift (system) that man has received."

The old man chuckled to himself as he continued to stir the cauldron.

================

[Present]

Running through all my talisman stock, there is only a handful of them left. Barely a dozen or two. Yet, the number of the metamorphosing beasts still seemed to be great. I have definitely at least taken down eighty to a hundred over of them. God, they sure are like cockroaches. Kill one and three comes out. Kill three and another eight more spawns. At this rate, I will run out of talismans and fuel before these guys die out. Then, I would create trouble for that boy Liu Xun and that celestial wolf overlord, huh. Well, I am no pushover.

Red lights flashed upon my body as I could feel great heat leak out of my body. My blood started to boil as more wounds appear on my body. Tossing aside my spiritual pouch to the back, I started to form symbols on my hands. Briefly looking to my side, I looked at the two copper mirrors which had accompanied me a great way throughout the journey which was known as life. I had obtained two dull mirrors with faint spirituality at the beginning of my journey as a rogue cultivator and the three of us have developed together over the last three and a half decades. I guess this will be our final fight together, my comrades. I said as I gave them both a faint glance.

Tossing the remaining yellow talismans into the air, the sky began to fill with numerous lights. Red spikes, purple swords, green spears, orange fireballs. Let them rain upon the enemy. If this is to be my last battle, then I should do it without any regrets. IT SHALL BE LEGENDARY!!!

My skin continued to burn as faint flames started to burn onto my skin.

GIIIIIIIIIIIIIII-!

The approaching blue beasts retreated back in fear as they could feel the unquenchable heat and flame emanate from my body. The few remaining spells in the sky rained down as I had no longer anything left to throw at them. My two copper mirrors kept blasting of beams of light to whatever extent they could manage. Meanwhile, while the barrage of spells were slowly cooling off, something else was heating up real fast. Heh, my body is probably getting cooked really well right now. One Senior Gan coming right up, Well Done!

"WELL THEN BASTARDS AND B!TCHES, THIS IS THIS OLD MAN'S LAST CONCERT! SO BURN UPON MY RAGE, TASTE MY FURY, EXPERIENCE MY VENGEANCE, LET US DELECT UPON AN ENDLESS UNQUENCHABLE FLAME! LET THE RED STAR LIGHT UP THE DARK SKY! EEEESSSEENNNTTIIIIIAAAA MEEGAAAALOOOOOO-GGGRREENNNAAAADDIIIIIIIAAAAAAAAA!"

Ahhhh...a beautiful gleam of red emits from my hands. As my red blood pour out endlessly, my skin tear up and shrivel upon contact with the great heat. It was the sight of a beautiful shooting star as the gigantic ball of light departed from my hands, or whatever remained of it. It was followed with a trickle of red afterglow as the ball blasted through the numerous blue metamorphosing beasts. Not giving them any chance of resistance, nor any chance to dodge. It traveled in one straight arc, all the way towards that fleshy bastard Shaggaroth. The beam looks like it would reach that bastard, well then take that asshole. I hope you enjoy eating upon my rage and vengeance as you have drunk upon my despair and sadness.

GUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

A loud sound of pain and anguish was barely heard in my ears as my vision starts to fade. What a beautiful light, was all I thought.

==

"Hey mom, what is that?"

The little boy pointed out into the sky as the dark night was illuminated by a rain of mobile threads.

"Ohh, Little Jian. Those are shooting stars. If you make a wish with your eyes closed, your wish will be fulfilled in the distant future."

The lady pointed out as she glanced at the man beside her.

"Yes yes, Little Jian. Dream big, become anything you want!"

The man said out warmly as he looked over with tender eyes.

"Nuh-uh, what I wish for is for all of us to be happy!"

The boy said out with a peal of innocent laughter as the family continued to enjoy the sight of the meteor shower.

Okay that concludes the first scenario of the fight I guess. Hope you all aren't too bored with the way this is presented.

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