Book 6, Chapter 117: Strange Desolate Beasts

These two Desolate Beasts were completely identical in appearance.

They both had a round and ball-like form, each with two eyes, a nose, and a single wing. However, one of the creatures had its wing angled towards its left side, and the other towards its right. In addition, one of the creatures had two legs in the front and a hole on the left side of its body while the other had two legs at the back and a hole on the right side of its body. It was almost as if they were conjoined twins that had, at some point, been separated.

Unlike most typical Desolate Beasts, their bodies were not very large. Actually, they were roughly the same size as an average human being.

More shockingly, they didn’t use their feet to walk; instead, they used the hole in their body to maneuver around. Air flowed through the hole, propelling them forwards like a balloon with a hole in it. This meant that their flight path was extremely erratic, as they could only travel sideways like a crab.

However, while crabs could walk in two directions, these two Desolate Beasts could only move in one direction. They could only turn around by redirecting the flow of air from their single hole, but their starting position was fixed.

In other words, the creatures could not turn around without moving forwards.

If they wanted to go backwards, then they had to first propel themselves forwards and then alter the airflow to make a u-turn.

The Boundless Sect’s disciples had seen all kinds of strange creatures by this point, but it was their first time ever seeing anything this bizarre. What’s more, two of them had appeared at once.

If it weren’t for the powerful aura and heavy pressure emanating from their bodies, no one would have ever thought that these two bumbling balls were Desolate Beasts.

“What is that?” Danba was obviously surprised.

“I don’t know. Too many strange Desolate Beasts have existed since ancient times for there to be records of them all ,” Su Chen replied.

Everyone’s expression was quite solemn at the prospect of dealing with two unknown Desolate Beasts at once.

“How should we handle them?” Danba asked somewhat nervously.

“We’ll retreat first, and then each of us will take one on,” Su Chen replied.

“That’s not a very efficient strategy.”

“But it is the most practical one.”

Although splitting up to deal with a Desolate Beast was not the most brilliant of ideas, to Su Chen, it was the most practical one available. After all, even though they were theoretically on the same side, neither party was willing to go all out and sacrifice the lives of their soldiers for the sake of the other party. In fact, they would probably prefer for more of their “allies” to die.

This kind of situation, where lives were sure to be lost while neither party could fully trust the other, was actually the most problematic kind.

Thus, given the relevant constraints, splitting up to deal with the Desolate Beasts one on one was indeed the most practical plan.

Danba knew that Su Chen’s reasoning was sound, but he still had some misgivings. “The main issue is that while your men might be able to handle a Desolate Beast, mine cannot.”

The Boundless Sect had brought their most elite disciples on this expedition. Thirty thousand Light Shaking Realm cultivators were more than enough to deal with a Desolate Beast. The Ravagers’ forces, however, were far weaker in comparison.

Su Chen chuckled. “I refuse to believe that you don’t have any trump cards hidden in reserve. Go ahead and use them. I promise that I won’t do anything to you this time.”

Promise?

What were promises worth?

Even so, Danba amazingly agreed after considering it for a moment.

He then nodded towards one of his subordinates. That subordinate, who had seemed mediocre and ordinary until now, suddenly transformed. His stature grew taller and his shoulders broader as his aura morphed into that of a powerful Ravager general.

Averigus.

He was the God of War, Averigus, who had angrily denounced Anubi at the arena all those years ago.

Apparently, Averigus had played a pivotal role in Danba’s coup against Anubi and subsequent struggle for power. His backstab at the last moment had resulted in the complete collapse of the Inferno Tribe.

From that day onwards, the “weed” who was half-elven and half-Ravager had incurred the wrath of the entire Inferno Tribe. As such, Averigus had disappeared not long after that event. Some claimed that Danba had burned his bridge after crossing it and killed Averigus; others concluded that Averigus had gone into a self-imposed exile due to the guilt he felt towards the Inferno Tribe’s civilians.

But now, he had reappeared.

The moment this old God of War revealed himself, he pulled out an unknown item and blew into it. Even though this was obviously a signal of some kind, no sound of any kind was emitted.

Su Chen had his own thoughts on the matter, but Danba gave a preemptive explanation. “I have another branch of soldiers nearby. However, it will take them some time to get here. They won’t be immediately available.”

“Understood. Shaoxuan, take five thousand Light Shaking Realm cultivators and help them hold out for a bit,” Su Chen said.

“Understood!” Lin Shaoxuan immediately left with five thousand Light Shaking Realm cultivators in tow, flying over to bolster Danba’s ranks.

At this point, the two Desolate Beasts had already arrived.

Their flight path was quite haphazard as they meandered forward through a tortuous route, zig-zagging all over the place. Yes, these strange looking Desolate Beasts couldn’t fly in a straight line either; they seemed to bobble around randomly. But despite their appearances, they slowly but surely made their way over to the battlefield, and the general direction they were traveling in was right on target.

From what Su Chen and Danba had seen so far, they could tell that these two Desolate Beasts didn’t seem to have any particular unique properties other than being extraordinarily sturdy.

Yes, their bodies were incredibly sturdy.

Anything that was unfortunate enough to be in their path was smashed into smithereens without any resistance.

Gloom City’s towers were a perfect example. The two Desolate Beasts had steamrolled their way through the city, seemingly ignoring any of the Astrals’ instructions if there were any. Any towers that were unfortunate enough to stand in their path were destroyed upon contact. While the towers’ defensive barriers were powerful enough to resist the joint army’s firepower for a prolonged amount of time, these Desolate Beasts were capable of destroying them with a mere brush.

That was not that strange. After all, they were genuine Desolate Beasts. The Thousand Poisons Toad had managed to inflict heavy damage on Sky City by just slamming its body into the city.

The two Desolate Beasts also had another ability besides their incredibly sturdy bodies: the air spat out from their bodies.

Even though the expelled air seemed to primarily serve as its mode of transportation, once the air reached a certain distance from its body, it would transform into a violent hurricane and wreak havoc on its surroundings.

The two Desolate Beasts were basically miniature hurricane hammers, careening every which way as they destroyed everything in their path.

The towers were torn to bits by this seemingly invincible combination!

Before the Desolate Beasts had even dealt any damage to the joint army, Gloom City had been torn up first.

The Astrals, however, seemed to have expected this and made no attempt to resist or counter no matter how much damage those two Desolate Beasts did to their towers.

These two Desolate Beasts careened into almost every obstacle they could find in Gloom City, like two balloons that never seemed to run out of air. They only left after destroying nearly a thousand towers, which helped out the joint soldiers quite a bit.

However, the joint army had no time to celebrate.

Because the Desolate Beasts were now coming for them.

No matter how random their flight patterns appeared, they were slowly but surely converging on the joint army.

“Everyone, retreat!” Li Chongshan yelled above the din of battle.

“Retreat! Retreat!” the Ravagers echoed.

The two armies retreated at the same time, separating themselves as they did so.

They were not actually running away; they were just repositioning so that they would have more space to maneuver in the battle that was about to take place.

As expected, the two Desolate Beasts also split up, each flying off in a different direction. Their flight paths were so random, though, that it took some time before anyone could ascertain that they had actually split up.

This indicated that, as long as these two Desolate Beasts didn’t have any unrevealed techniques, their movement speed was their biggest weakness.

If that was the case, then they should be theoretically able to kite them to death.

“Flying swords, go!”

Following Li Chongshan’s command, tens of thousands of flying swords simultaneously shot out, raining down upon the two Desolate Beasts.

This combination attack was likely strong enough to outright kill a Sovereign. However, Li Chongshan was not foolish enough to expect these swords to do the same to a Desolate Beast. Instead, their purpose was to inflict numerous small wounds that would accumulate over time, eventually resulting in the Desolate Beast’s death.

Even so, the soldiers quickly realized that their swords weren’t even leaving behind the small cuts that they desired on the Desolate Beast’s body.

They couldn’t pierce through its defenses!

And these sword strikes were no ordinary Light Shaking Realm attack. Each sword’s power was amplified by the formation that the disciples had arrayed themselves in. As such, each sword actually contained the power of multiple people — an effective way to convert quantity into quality.

Even so, the Desolate Beast wasn’t damaged even the slightest.

This surprised Li Chongshan and the others quite a bit.

Li Chongshan barked, “Thirty times the strength. Again!”

Under normal circumstances, each sword was about ten times as strong as a normal one. Thirty times was a significant step up and would require a much greater expenditure of Origin Energy.

But if their weakest attacks weren’t even wounding their opponent, then that expenditure was necessary.

The sword light descended upon the Desolate Beast yet again, this time thirty times as strong.

After the light faded, Li Chongshan saw to his disbelief that the Desolate Beast’s skin was still pristine and unblemished.

This creature’s skin was quite tough!

Even though Li Chongshan knew that Desolate Beasts were incredibly strong creatures, he had never heard of such a resilient Desolate Beast before.

Most Desolate Beasts relied on their abundant vitality to sustain and recover from their wounds. The Thousand Poisons Toad, for instance, was so big that even a shot from a Sun-Shattering Cannons would only inflict a small wound on it.

But even a sword at ten times its normal strength was capable of wounding it, let alone one at thirty times the strength.

But against this strange Desolate Beast, however, thirty times was obviously still not enough.

This Desolate Beast appeared to specialize in defense.

“Eighty times!” Li Chongshan called out.

The ten thousand swordsmen raised their hands before slashing down in unison once again. This time, however, the number of sword streaks had noticeably decreased.

At that level of power, not everyone would be capable of unleashing an attack. As such, the number of swords had naturally dwindled from ten thousand to one thousand to compensate for the increased power of the swords. This was the only way for them to unleash this powerful of a technique.

A thousand swords, however, was still quite a large number.

Even so, the Desolate Beast emerged from the sword rain completely unscathed.

The soldiers felt like they were about to go insane.

How was this possible?

Li Chongshan gritted his teeth. “Three hundred times!”

At this level, they could only manifest a total of a hundred streaks of sword light.

Actually, when the individual strength of the sword was pushed to this level, the overall offensive capability was lower. Ten times strength unleashed by ten thousand soldiers was equivalent to one hundred thousand units of strength, thirty times strength unleashed by ten thousand soldiers was equivalent to three hundred thousand units of strength, but eighty times strength unleashed by a thousand soldiers was only equivalent to eighty thousand units of strength in total.

And three hundred times strength unleashed by a hundred individuals was only thirty thousand units of strength.

This tactic of sacrificing their overall power output to raise each individual’s power was only done out of necessity.

After all, only the attacks that penetrated the creatures’ defenses counted. If the damage was negligible, the total number of attacks didn’t matter at all.

Even so, the situation that they beheld caused them to be filled with despair.

Even after the Desolate Beast was struck by the hundred streaks of sword light at three hundred times strength, it still appeared to be completely unharmed. Their movements weren’t affected at all as it continued to relentlessly close in. Even Su Chen couldn’t believe his eyes.

This combination attack was already on par with the might of a legendary Arcana Technique. However, even then, they had failed to even scratch their opponent.

This comparatively tiny Desolate Beast was actually astonishingly tough, even for a Desolate Beast.

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