“How can this puppet be so strong…”
“You shall be purified!”
“And why is it repeating the same five words constantly?”
“The light will bring everlasting peace to this world.”
‘Hm… didn’t have time to design the speech pattern too well, putting in those one-liners might have been a mistake…’
Zhang Dong watched as his ‘Archangel’ leader unit battled the enemy general. It was equipped with a pocket version of the Bob Ai and was capable of understanding almost everything but when the words that it was spewing had been pre-recorded. During battle, all speaking functions were limited and all resources shifted to the puppet’s battle mode. Conserving energy and processing power was paramount to victory and for that reason, it just continued to spew out a few one-liners, like a boss in a video game.
‘The leader is around the level of a tribe leader from the demi-human empire, I guess all these empires have a similar level of power, the only ones that were different were Argus’ group…’
The battle was in full swing and his puppets were battling it out with the large force from the Emerald Phoenix Empire. His allies were down in the south but this time around they were alone. They had a small elite force of fighters but there weren’t that many of them. Considering that all the other Empire’s had Emperor class leaders on their side, the people from the magical kingdom were a bit strange.
‘They kept their kingdom rather vague, would they only send help if this party failed?’
Argus and his knights would not be able to take on the Emerald Phoenix Empire by themselves. They were a bit stronger than the group that he was fighting here but with a couple more Saint Emperors, even the golden armors would start giving out. He could only attribute it to their forces not fully committing to this side. Probably after acquiring one item, they also didn’t see the need to ask for reinforcements.
‘It’s not strange to see this type of setting, only when the miniboss is destroyed will the real boss appear.’
Just like all the other Empires, the one Argus came from also had a leader. They had a king instead of an Emperor but he could be on the level of the demi-human leader as well. Other than that, they could have some other powerful warriors on the level of Lord Lucius. If there were ten at his level, even Zhang Dong wouldn’t be able to win. Before he was having trouble with one Lucius and his squadron of golden warriors, if they increased in number, they would be a formidable force to be reckoned with.
‘I wonder if they will notice something, I did take inspiration from their armors.’
He had captured some of the silver knights and after working with Argus he had ample time to scan the golden armors. They wouldn’t let him borrow any but he had captured the silver variants and could somewhat understand the principle they worked with. Now his new creation was in the process of getting pushed back by the enemy commander.
‘I guess it needs some more juice or battle data…’
It was obvious that his Archangel Michael was a powerful creation but it could not fully contend with a Saint Emperor at the pinnacle of their power. The man was a general that had probably spent hundreds of years mastering his craft, a machine that was made within a week and had no hopes of beating him. At least not at this moment when it was still in the process of figuring out how to utilize its armaments. Even the best Ai needed time to process the information it was given and this was the first time it faced off against a Saint Emperor like this.
‘I guess, I’ll have to go in instead.’
Zhang Dong, who had been previously stuck in the main floating pyramid decide to make an appearance. A thick golden ray of golden light exploded upwards and pushed the clouds to the side. From within he appeared and was already dressed in his own power armor that he used to battle against Wang Long.
“Leave these lands!”
The enemy cultivators shuddered under the pressure, they instantly knew that the being in the golden armor was not something they could handle. However, retreating was not an option. Instead, all of the generals started moving toward each other, in their minds if all of them added their power, victory was possible.
“Everyone, we need to work together, for the Emperor!”
All of the generals shouted while gathering. They assumed an attacking formation that caused their spiritual energy to skyrocket. Together with who they called Master General, there were six Saint Emperors in total. Their eyes were flaming with passion and their muscles twitching with anticipation. They knew that the person floating in the sky was the real enemy and if they managed to kill him, then everything would be over.
“I see, you do not wish to leave nor do you wish to surrender, how do those guys always say it? Ah right… KNOW YOUR PLACE!”
He acted like a villain while his spiritual energy rose. His approach was faster than a bolt of lightning and only after the collision occurred did a thunderous roar echo through the battlefield. The formation that these six were so proud of couldn’t last through a single hit and some of them even retreated while spitting out blood.
At this point in time, Zhang Dong had already advanced past what the normal denizens of this world should be capable of. After defeating Wang Long for a moment he had taken a glimpse at the realm beyond realms. And even if his foot was not in the door quite yet, he got to peek through the hole which allowed him to dominate this battle.
The six Saint Emperors didn’t know what hit them as they got tossed around like rag dolls by this blur of golden light. Before they could muster enough spiritual energy for a counterattack, they were already flying through the air. There was no time to form a strategy or to examine the attack pattern Zhang Dong was going for, they couldn’t only protect their vital points while turtling up.
“The generals can’t do anything?”
One of the Supreme Saints that was glancing at the battle taking place, screamed out in pain. While his attention was pulled away for a moment, the golden puppets resumed their attack. The pyramids in the background kept pushing out more models as the battle continued. Their greatest warriors were getting tossed around like little children and couldn’t aid them anymore, this meant that the army composed of cold automatons could have free reign now, even the Archangel that was close in power to a general, was now keeping them busy.
After the golden one entered the fray, the battle quickly shifted. The Heavenly Revolution Army had clearly started winning and the forces from the Emerald Phoenix Empire were faltering. Soon enough, the morale wavered and some of them started backing off. Without the generals there to stop them, some of them prioritized their lives over the mission. Perhaps they would be seen as traitors but they had better chances of surviving if they ran.
“What are you doing, keep fighting!”
One of the Supreme Saints shouted while punching the hard skull of an automaton. The hit dislodged its head but didn’t stop the puppet from moving as it grabbed the man’s arm. While clinging to it, another three automatons approached with long spears to plunge them into the cultivator’s back. His death only cemented the decisions made by the retreating warriors, the battle was over and they had to abandon it.
‘I guess loyalty gained by might only amounts to this much, they still have around half of their forces left, they could make a stand and potentially turn it around.’
Zhang Dong was holding onto the head of the Master General. It was a bloody pulp that he had a hand in. The people on the other end didn’t realize that they weren’t doing that badly. The puppets he made wouldn’t be able to keep up their numbers for too long. During the process of re-assembly, they were losing a lot of energy and it wouldn’t last forever. As he saw it, there was a possibility to win this but a price would need to be paid for it.
For a moment he felt bad for these people. They were only here for shallow reasons like gaining power and prestige. Some of them were probably forced by their upbringing to believe that the biggest first was always right. The fear of getting punished and greed was the only driving force in this expedition of theirs.
‘It crumbles this easily, huh?’
He looked at the grown men fleeing in panic and not even looking if they could save anyone. There were some people getting manhandled by the puppets but they were just ignored to aid the others to escape. It was clear that the Emerald Phoenix Empire was very similar to the one here. Most of the clans and sects would act in a similar fashion as the survival of their line was more important than people below them. The moment their powerbase crumbled these prideful cultivators crumbled instantly.
‘What would happen if my people saw me lose?’
Zhang Dong was curious, it was close during the Wang Long encounter where his allies aided him in his battle. However, would they continue to fight and even stay in the same sect if he was finally vanquished by someone? He did not know but he had to assume that it would be a mixed response. While part of his sect had a fanatical view of him, others were milder in their beliefs.
‘I guess it will be better to never lose and find out.’
The defeated Master General was tossed into the medallion with the other five that he knocked out. Some of them were missing limbs and had crushed bones but were all alive. He would use this group of officers to find out the truth behind the Emerald Phoenix Emperor and his true motive.
“Everyone stop pursuing, gather up the destroyed units and everything that could be useful.”
His army of automatons started chasing after the fleeing cultivators but instantly stopped when the order was given. The second weakness of this army was the range, without the slow-moving pyramids around them, they would quickly lose power and most of their fighting potential. Even if he wanted to capture all the capable fighters from the enemies, he couldn’t.
‘This will probably be the last time they underestimate me… I should probably get what I can and return to the Heavenly Crane Sect, now perhaps I’ll be able to make them move.’
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