Chapter 86:

Prelude to a Rematch

Mad God


Months flashed by quickly as life settled in the Sect. The disciples mostly focused on their cultivation, attending classes hosted by not just Ren but other Elders too. The most surprising was Isha, who enjoyed teaching the outer disciples and holding public courses. It didn't take long, and she was among the most popular Elders, always looking out for them.

Meanwhile, hundreds of kilometers away in Thunder Valley, the city was already looking like a medium-sized human settlement, filled with different demons, living in surprisingly good harmony, and even had a few human residents by now. Most arrived as representatives of different companies or merchants, setting up branches here, ready to reap great rewards and never seek before seen opportunities. Niji held a meeting in the city hall, where the different tribe leaders were present.

"We have been contacted by two other tribes wishing to join us," Niji said while Kang calmly listened. Pongo took a sip from her pipe, and the new leader of the fairies, Mili, nervously played with her long, green hair. "Haaah… nothing?" He looked around them, but they all sat silently. "Really?"

"You lead," Kang answered calmly.

"Yeah, this is tooooooo much troubleeeeee…. Just… decide okaaaay?” Pongo puffed out a giant cloud of smoke from her nose.

“We… we are fine… with your… decision…” Mili murmured in an almost inaudible voice.

"Come on, you always push every work on me. No wonder Shaman tucked in his tail and ran off to join their Sect! Now I am starting to consider it too!" He held his head with both hands. "Olup is still recovering, eager as he is. He is in no condition to move around yet," Niji whispered into his palms.

"You are good. Lead good, why bother us?" Kang asked, picking his ears with a bored expression.

"Because we should work together, that is why! Okay, okay… let's continue!" Niji forced calmness onto himself. "The two tribes who contacted us, wanting to join, are the Owls and a group of Moles."

His words made the others exchange weird looks as even Pongo's eyes regained real clarity from their usual clouded state.

"They would gobble up the moles. Day one." Pongo said with a clear voice.

"This is why I requested this meeting. Both of them wish to join us, and both of them would be great assets. The owls could easily play the role of our nightly guardians while the moles are a great workforce to expand downwards and build an undercity or even shelters we can use if we are attacked."

"Still, owls proud, getting along hard," Kang added.

“They… wouldn’t eat… us… no?" Mili asked with a scared voice, but Kang stretched out his giant hand, gently patting her head.

"We protect."

"No worries, I plan to set up a meeting first, then we can decide. The main problem is if the owls start to cause trouble because the moles will be there too. We will see their standings on things and decide. That is why I want you to be there too. I alone can't deal with this." Niji looked at the giant, white gorilla before scanning the rest.

"Help." Kang agreed quickly while Pongo just took another sip from her pipe.

"Suuuureeeeee."

"O-okay."

"Thanks! The meeting will take place the day after tomorrow. Their leaders and their entourage are going to arrive by the evening."

"Evening?" Mili tilted his head.

"Well… the owls are nightly creatures, and the moles… hate the sunlight," Niji explained with a smile.

"It is going to be a looooooooong night." Pongo sighed before standing up as the meeting came to an end, leaving behind an exhausted Niji leaning back in his chair

"I can't imagine how humans formed such big empires, really… leading this one city is getting on my nerves." Niji stood up, finally walking to his cabinet and taking out a wine bottle chugging from it like there is no tomorrow "Ahh… at least this position has its perks!" he chuckled a bit, feeling to be more ready to get back at work.


….
…..

"How are the preparations?" Matu walked into their group's hiding place, deep in the forest, under a giant oak tree's roots.

"Everything went perfectly." one of the other three, namely Hob, answered. He was the oldest mongoose in the group yet a loyal follower of Matu, him being half of his.

"It was easy to find a cowardly tribe, and the moles are perfect for the role. If they get accepted into their village, they can dig a tunnel for our infiltration attempt in a week." Wanata chuckled, the group's main scout and tracker.

"Do not underestimate them!" Nepi warned, the only female in the fold, who had the main role of being the medic and caretaker.

"Agreed." Matu nodded. "I learned that previously. You all saw that. Anyway, humans should not be a problem by now! Our main goal is to gain access and assassinate the strongest, the white gorilla named Kang. We take him out and leave. The rest will collapse naturally."

"Are you sure?" Hob asked back.

"Yeah, you know power is everything! They won't hold together if they lose their best warrior and pillar of their union for long. One, they will be fighting for his vacant position, and two, his presence subjugates the rowdy ones. Taking him out is going to let them cause trouble."

"Hope it works!" Hob sighed. "They are clearly on the path to conquer the south. If they succeed, the higher-ups won't be happy."

"It always works," Matu replied confidently. It was not the first they conquered a tribe like this.

"And if not, so what? It was the scorpions who fucked it up first." Wanata snorted. "The rest of their tribe back home is the one who should be punished, not us!"

"You know how tyrannical those striped kitty cats are." Nepi rolled her eyes. "We can't place our whole tribe in danger! We must succeed."

"..." Matu stayed silent, tapping on the table before him.

"What are you thinking about?" Nepi looked at him, noticing his hiding, conflicted gaze deep in his eyes.

"Nothing. Just a fleeting thought of joining them."

"What?!" all three of them blurted out in surprise.

"What, what? Didn't you see their city? It's like the old ruins we always come across. Even better! What do we have back home? Exactly that. Ruins. The tigers still live in caves."

"So what?" Wanata crossed his arms. "We are not humans. We don't need to imitate them with everything. Also, you know how strong the tribes are on the side of the tigers! They won't show mercy if we even think about going different ways! We are too far from them on the family tree to even consider the possibility of mercy if we betray them."

"Yeah…" Nepi agreed, "Tigers, cougars, panthers, lions, cheetahs, not to mention the many mixed breeds of cats… their numbers are overwhelming. You should know the best, Matu. You led them multiple times! Those who are not with us are dead."

"Yeah, yeah… it's just… seeing a different approach made me think. That is all. Let's forget it and go back to the plan!" He shook his head as back home, hundreds of his brethren depended on their performance.

"Agreed." Hob nodded. "We do this and go back home to make our report. That is all."

"What if we fail?" Matu asked, curious at their replies.

"Then we flee." Wanata shook his head. "We can't be at fault if we just can't deal with them! We report back and tell them that if they want to keep the south in pieces, they must do it with the army."

"They won't be able to spare anyone because of the doggies." Matu chuckled. "They are at each other's throats. Even after the first successes, their advance has slowed down. Even the big boss is in the mountains."

"I just hope we won't be sent onto that side… That kind of war is not suitable for us." Nepi leaned back. "Wolfs never hunt alone. They only move in packs. If we see one, there must be five others nearby. It is a pain in the butt."

"Okay, okay, stop. Focus on the current task. Can we trust the moles?" Hob asked with a serious voice.

"Yeah." Wanata nodded. "I made sure they listened well and didn't try anything funny. I kidnapped the tribe leader's son for extra insurance."

"Where is he? Why didn't you tell me?" Matu raised his eyebrow.

"He is here." He laughed, pointing at the bones of the table, the remains of their dinner. "Don't worry, they don't know. This ensures their cooperation; when we are done, they will be the scapegoats anyway! This new village will do our job and finish them for revenge."

"You can be truly vile…." Nepi sighed, shaking her head, while Matu kept silent for a few seconds before nodding.

"Good. We are ready then. Let's wait and see how it turns out." Their General stood up with a determined look in his eyes, throwing any distracting thoughts to the back of his mind just like he did before this multiple times to ensure their tribe's survival back home.