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Sovereign of the Karmic System - Chapter 632 War of Blood, Flesh and Fire
632 War of Blood, Flesh and Fire
Unwilling to share his true intentions with Roley, Daniel decided to resume his exploration of the black castle instead. His former home, and house to the closest members of his group. Just before walking off, however, Roley noticed that a small speck of golden light had been shed by the aspect’s body, and had moved on an unoccupied spot near the castle’s entrance.
Once this light reached its destination, its intensity quickly started to grow to the size of a lighthouse’s light bulb, until finally, only moments later, the light dimmed completely, revealing the kneeling figure of Der. A pose he was holding while bent forward, with his rough and large hands resting on his thighs, and his head hanging forward. His figure was quite sorry, Roley thought at the sight of him.
While the young cultivator had expected his old friend to burst in a fit of blind anger, or for him to start swinging his fists and sword towards Daniel’s departing figure, something else happened. Der let his body lean back, stopping himself from falling completely by planting his palms onto the pavement’s cold black stone. He was now facing the ceiling with a sorrowful expression.
A disappointed countenance one could only see on the face of someone who had woken up from the most beautiful of dreams.
It took a couple of minutes for Der to regain his bearings. Something he had desperately tried to avoid, as he closed his eyes in the hope to fall back into the happiness he had gotten so used to in the few hours he had been trapped. Hours that, to him, had felt like centuries.
As Der finally came to terms with reality, he looked at the figure of Daniel, and finally understood who the young man truly was. “Goodbye, friend.” he whispered to himself as he realized that the boy he had met in the past, was now gone. Replaced by a god of consequence.. An absolute judge of morality and conduct.
At the sight of his parting figure, Der could not help but wonder how atrocious the consequences of negative karma could have been, when compared to how painfully beautiful the place he had been trapped in was. He imagined that such a place must have not been less terrifying than the world of suffering created by the existential power of horror.
Of course, while Der was not far off, there were differences between the two. Horror’s powers forced someone to live inside their deepest and most horrifying fears, while the power of Karma would force them to experience the horrors they had caused in life.. To feel the suffering their victims had felt. Yet, to the mind of Der, who was still scarred by the horrifying nature of Horror’s powers, that difference might have been non-existent.
“Are you okay?” Roley asked, pulling the middle-aged warrior right out of his pensive state.
Der nodded, then stood up, dusted his armor off, and composed himself. His mind had only now let go of the beautiful dreams, and once again focused on reality. On his face, the usual stoic expression had claimed its rightful place, as he decided that, despite experiencing imprisonment from both the powers of Karma and Horror, he had no intention of changing who he was as a consequence of the fear such powers provoked in him.
“I am.” Der answered without stopping to look at the corridor where Daniel had disappeared into. Then added, “Come on, we should go too.”
From a single look, Roley could tell that something had changed in Der. He was more respectful, and more calm.. As if he had just obtained an answer to one of the deepest questions in life. And little did he know how accurate that assumption was.
Yet, as Der invited him to follow Daniel, Roley stood still. “You go ahead, there is something I need to do first.” He said before leaving the castle, and jumping back into sidereal space. Then, as he walked out of his former home, the small planet had reappeared in his hand. A perfect fist-sized sphere that emanated the purest form of natural mana.
“My Lord.. is this..” said a silvery disembodied voice right before, from the darkness of the surrounding space, a dark silhouette took form. It was a dark elemental, whom Roley had ordered to follow the trio into the domain of Sacrifice so that, in case he had orders to send back to his army, the creature could relay for him.
Roley smiled with pride. “Yes, it’s our people’s new home.” He said as his grip over the small sphere became loose, and the object left the comfort of his hand. As if with purpose, the sphere floated away in a specific direction and with increasing speed, until finally, it finally disappeared from sight.
Then, like a kernel of corn in hot oil, the sphere exploded, turning into an enormous planet.
At the sight of this planet, the dark elemental felt extremely excited, yet, before she could express her joy, she felt something change deep inside her. The shade of the trees, the shadow of the mountains, and darkness of the more obscure depths of the ocean all rushed into her being, and before she could realize it, they merged with her.
All the concepts of darkness that formed her body as a perfect elemental of dark essence seemed to have finally found structure, merging into a primordial representation of her nature. She had become, after millions of years of failed attempts, a primordial elemental of darkness. A state of existence only the late ancestor of dark elementals she knew to have reached.
Roley too, at the sight of this, felt extremely giddy. He was aware that such an event was bound to become a common occurrence soon.. “Call the rest of our people, have them join us.” He ordered the primordial elemental who, underneath her inscrutable dark appearance, was joyous beyond words.
While overjoyed, the dark elemental did not forgo her duties. “Yes my Lord, right away.” she said right before her silhouette dissipated into the surrounding darkness.
In the weeks that followed, Der and Roley had reunited with their respective two armies, and together, they had broken through the blockade that prevented entrance from outside the interdimensional portal, officially moving into the universe. An action that officially started the conflict between the domain of Sacrifice, and the two unknown groups.
Unfortunately for the domain of Sacrifice, while they could assume that someone had invaded one of their universes due to the lack of guards right outside the interdimensional portal that led into it, they could do nothing about it. After all, when reinforcements arrived, they realized that the portal had been sealed, preventing any form of passage, and leaving the surviving champion of Sacrifice left in the universe to fend for themselves.
Left with no other choice, the reinforcements of Sacrifice’s domain attempted to reach the battlefield-turned universe by going through the rifts present in the bordering universes, but those plans too fell apart, for the universes they were sure existed in a shattered state, were now completely collapsed ahead of time, and a death trap themselves.
Yet, despite the lack of reinforcements, many champions of sacrifice were left in the vast universe. A sign which indicated that this universe in particular, which was used as the home of the Blood Sect, must have been of high value to the domain.
Nevertheless, none of that mattered, for the remaining champions of Sacrifice were of no threat to the organized armies led by Der and Roley, whose powers drastically increased every day.
The Elemental army in particular, after being granted a primordial planet to inhabit, had seen the rise of hundreds of primordial elementals. Creatures who had evolved from a perfect comprehension of the essence they represented, and to which they had been stuck at for hundreds of thousands of years, into powerful primordial elementals.
The members of the Immortal Armada had moved into Roley’s world as well, and from it, they had gained a deeper understanding of the elements. Yet, their stay was temporary, as human cultivators could teach one another better than elementals could. The use of such a planet would fall short the moment such a comprehension became common among the cultivators, at which point they would be able to find a new garden planet to inhabit.
As the two groups battled the champions of Sacrifice, Daniel had remained in the black castle, seemingly unwilling to leave. A decision the two leaders had grown unhappy with, and which forced them, after several weeks of no contact, to decide to pay him a visit.
When the two arrived at the black castle, they found it different. Its corridors, the gardens, the rooms, halls and training rooms had all been cleared by the ominous remnants of the people who had inhabited it for the last few centuries, and which had escaped the purifying flames that had destroyed the Blood Sect.
Now, the castle was extremely quiet and desolated.
Daniel, seemingly unbothered by the actions of his two companions, had spent this entire time sitting in the middle of the plaza where, not too long ago, tens of thousands of people had been slaughtered in the name of one of his competitors. He was sitting with his legs crossed, back as straight as an arrow, and closed eyes.
“Dan?” Roley asked carefully. He could not tell whether Daniel had wished to not be disturbed, for he had never made such a request. His worries, luckily, were eradicated the moment Daniel slowly opened his eyes, and they landed on him like a pair of golden flashlights.
The intensity Daniel’s golden eyes emanated had left a deep impression on Roley, leaving him at a loss for words. It was Der who, after witnessing his companion’s state of mind, decided to ask, “We have sealed the universe, and are clearing it from stragglers. What is our next move?” While calmer about it, Der still wished for nothing more than to reunite with his daughter, so he could not help but ask.
Daniel shook his head. “I am waiting too.” He claimed before once again closing his eyes. Around him, invisible to the eyes of his two companions, a few sparse golden lights approached him from all directions, eager to enter his body and become his personal power.
“What do you mean?” Roley asked in confusion. “Our armies are at the strongest they can be in a short time, while Sacrifice’s domain has lost a large amount of their troops. If we have to strike his domain, now is the time.”
“I can’t.” Daniel responded dismissively.
“Stop speaking like that, just tell us what you need.” Der said, slightly irritated by Daniel’s unnecessarily mysterious behavior. But, alas, despite the loss of patience of his two companions, Daniel resumed his meditation, leaving them with no answer. Only Daniel knew of his limitations, as well as what made him different from any other aspect of existence. Knowledge that he could not be bothered with sharing with the two.
Yet, the same piece of knowledge had lingered in his mind the whole way through.
He had recently learned that, while he could accumulate existential power into his body, the power of Karma did not exactly belong to him. Or at least, not initially. A person’s karma belonged to them, and them alone-Only turning into unfulfilled Karma, and becoming Daniel’s to use, at the moment of their death.
Of course, in the past Daniel would have had no qualms with killing a creature that had accumulated negative karma to take the power for himself, but that, he had realized, went against his nature. He wasn’t there to judge based on the nature of people’s karmic tally, he was there to enforce the outcome they deserved, and for that reason, Daniel had decided that the only karma he would take, was the unfulfilled power people would leave behind at the moment of their death.
A decision that, unfortunately, made accumulating the power he required an extremely slow process..
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