Chapter 97:

Lightning Rain

Mad God

Ren was flying with her full speed when she felt a resonance on her wrist. As she raised it up, her amethyst colored bracelet lit up and Leinor’s voice surged out of it.

“Where are you? I am coming from the direction of the Capital.”

“You were quick!” Ren smiled faintly but it was not a carefree expression.

“Of course. Whoever dares to hurt our Mother has to die.”

“I’ll transmit my resonance over, follow it and meet up with me! I’ll slow down!” She held the bracelet on her wrist. They were wearing a matching pair, crafted by Xendar, given to them on their 3rd year of their marriage anniversary. When they infused their energy into it, it would link up with the other and could help them find each other, or just communicate at any distance, wherever they would be on the continent.

“Locked on! I’ll be there, 5 minutes tops!” Leinor ended the conversation and he was on point, because exactly 5 minutes later he arrived.

“Here!” Ren hugged him, before giving him a Tier 3 energy pill.

“Are you okay?” Leinor asked, stroking her head.

“Yeah. How’s Mom?”

“Stabilized by the effort of Sect Head, Father and Shaman.”

“And Father?”

“Calm. From the outside perspective.”

“That’s bad. The calmer he is, the worse the situation.” Ren said, biting into her lip.

“What are our plans?” Leinor asked, his eyes serious and ready for anything.

“Find them, kill them. Leave only one alive, preferably a stronger one. He ought to know something.”

“Okay. Where are they?”

“Not far, north from here in an old fort used to practice siege battles.” She pointed with her head.

“Then let’s go! Should we just fly in and start killing?” He asked, letting her lead the way as they flew forward once again.

“Now that you are here, no. Instead let’s use… that.”

“Oh? Good thing I know you!” Leinor chuckled, “I brought every necessary item to set it up!”

“That is why you are my husband~ How long do you need to make it work?”

“5 minutes. 10 if we want the area of effect to be very strong.”

“Take your time. They are strong so I’ll fly in, draw their attention and start a fight. You set up the formation! I am curious if the schematics sent over by Sect Head’s son really are that powerful…”

“Okay. I brought the enhanced rods!” He flashed a smile at her.

“Then there is going to be a thunderstorm…” Ren smiled with a dangerous light in her eyes.

When the old, rundown fortress came into view, Ren just blasted out with a loud thunder, her whole body flashing in violet lightning, not restraining anything as she closed in. The gang, who were in the middle of destroying their camp and ready to scatter, already numbering only 8 people, were startled that someone found them so quickly.

Their current leaders were dressed in all white, head to toe, shielding them from the hot sun, and also concealing their identity as not even their members knew their real looks. When they saw who was approaching they immediately recognized Ren.

“It’s her. Should we fight or flee?” one of them asked.

“Fight. It’s a perfect opportunity! We are also experts and she is alone. She may be strong but we have the advantage in the years of our experiences.”

While they debated, the first attack had already landed as Ren threw out a lightning javelin, so suddenly and so quickly it just went through one of the men, waiting for order. He thought himself to be strong and a peak existence as he ascended 120 years ago, when in the 6th stage of body refinement. It was a proud feat for any solitary cultivators, not part of any family or organization. Yet the incoming attack went through his body like a hot knife through butter, impaling him to the ground.

“What… is… this…” He groaned, still alive, trying to stand up, grabbing onto the buzzing, crackling javelin, only to have his hands be run through by violent electricity, frying every sense of his.

It was something so painful he never thought was possible as every muscle in his body spasmed, contracting uncontrollably yet he was unable to scream. It only took a few seconds to be fully taken over, literally, as the javelin got absorbed into his body. Ren controlled him through it, making the half-dead bandit attack the others like a puppet. Even when the rest mercilessly decapitated him, the body continued to fight until Ren’s energy ran out, making it finally collapse.

By then, in the air, she was facing off the two strongest cultivators, fighting them simultaneously. She was wielding a real, physical spear with a length of 3 meters. It was completely silver in color, without any decoration or fancy markings, just a heavy and sturdy block of metal with a sharp end on it. In reality, it was an artifact, forged by her father and her in conundrum, personally tailoring it to her specifics. It was acting like a conductor for Ren’s affinity and also if she wished it functioned as a lightning rod, drawing down nature’s forces from the sky, if there was a thunderstorm nearby.

Ren’s spear strikes were fierce and quick, leaving flashing trails behind them as she attacked the one in the front. Her target had to completely focus on dodging if he wanted to stay alive. His affinity was orange, blazing fire, one of the most common ones as his hands were covered in it, burning away the jumping arcs and sparks from Ren’s spear before it could land on him.

“Fuck!” the second cried out as he tried to strike Ren in the back but as she pulled back her right hand, she easily spun around, and stabbed out with quick succession, aiming two strikes at him.

His affinity was the same as Ren’s, being lightning, albeit yellowish in color. As the two affinities clashed they created a small explosion while he slid backward in the air, arms crossed before his chest, yellowish sparks fighting against violet ones all over his body.

The rest of the gang was unable to join in, watching from the ground or in the air, hovering, debating what to do, leave or not. If some of them had the thought to join in, they risked hitting the leaders, which itself would bring disaster, even if they won. They were known for their ruthlessness, even amongst a group of assassins. Not to mention, seeing one girl going toe to toe with them made the rest realize, even if they called themselves Harmony Realm experts, they were much weaker and nobody wanted to end up like the first, unlucky bastard.

“Gods damn that spear…” the one with the fire affinity groaned, blocking another swipe with a flame shield he just formed but it was already cracked. He was just flexing his arms to try to release the pain and tension from it, after the strike he received, when Ren changed targets, now going after his partner. She was pushing him back once again, changing her target to him, trying to run him through with her spear. “What kind of speed is this?” the one with the yellow lightning affinity moaned as he had no time to even summon a complete spell. He was again forced to defend. “It feels like fighting against multiple opponents!”

Ren was completely silent all the way through, not even releasing a shout as she fought. For those who saw it from outside, she seemed like she danced between the two. Her moves carried a strange rhythm and elegance, wielding her spear like part of her body, dancing around it, always switching her targets when they would just happen to gain their footing, keeping them off balance and in place.

By now the two leaders thought they should escape as this is going to be a fight that only can end in a tie or when all of them are so exhausted they can’t fight anymore. What they had confidence in was their strength to match her. Yes, Ren seemed stronger but they slowly came to the understanding that her edge mostly lay in her speed. In her coordinated moves and the disturbing effects of her affinity. It spread a numbing sensation all around on their bodies and bodily functions. Ren’s strength did not lay in the sheer power of her strikes.

In their more than 200 years of cultivation they reached the 9th stage of Body Refinement and successfully survived the hardest tribulation of 9 bolts, ascending. Since then few people could stand up to them, dominating everyone in the past centuries. Those who could, were also in the same, what they called, in the ranks of the true Harmony experts. Even now, when they faced a teenage looking girl, who pushed both of them back, they were confident in surviving and escaping.

“No wonder she is so high on the list… but we can’t kill her now it seems. We need to leave.” sent a voice message to his partner while Ren’s spear just brushed past by his face as he landed a strike on the shaft, directing it away.

“Yeah, she is stronger than expected! But rash, just as it was predicted.” came the answer as Ren used the force, hitting her spear to follow its course, turning around, parrying the other’s attacks that aimed at her back.

As they were debating how to escape the fight, suddenly, up in the sky, black clouds started to form, coming from nowhere. The wind got wild, howling like a beast around them as thundering booms roared above the land. The rain quickly followed suit as the phenomena stunned all of them. Ren just stood there with a smirk, letting herself be soaked in it as her body absorbed the water thirstily.

Down below them Leinor stood, panting a little, popping another pill into his mouth, standing beside a 2 meter tall rod, filled with weird inscriptions, from bottom to top, pulsating. It was inserted into the ground, half of them buried completely. There were 25 of them, laid out in a circle around the fort and acting as catalysts in a new formation developed by Levictus and modified by Ren.

“Let me deal with the dregs!” Leinor chuckled, sending it over to his wife, finally rushing up, to join the battle.

The arriving storm stunned everyone as a few minutes earlier it was still sunny but now darkness descended onto them. While those weaker looked up, watching the clouds and flashing lights inside them, made their last mistakes. Leinor appeared behind one, grabbing his head with both of his hands. He could only let out a weak shriek that sounded like air pressed out of a balloon, while his whole body shrank down and became gray. He was sucked dry of lifeforce in a few seconds.

“Mmm, now I feel truly refreshed!” Leinor smacked his lips as he let him collapse. The rest quickly pulled themselves together as a second battlefield opened up below Ren.

Leinor, just like his wife, held nothing back. He was slower than Ren and as he faced the remaining 5 of them, they had an easier time attacking him… yet, it was like hitting into cotton. The attacks that landed lost all their powers, disintegrating before they could reach his body, being absorbed by Leinor effortlessly. When one of them sent a fist towards him, covered in rocks, like a giant golem’s arm, when it got near, Leinor only looked at it. The rocks trembled and then crumbled, turning to sand as they fell off. In the end only a normal hand reached him, landing on his torso. He just smiled as the hit felt like it came from a child as every strength behind it was long ago absorbed by him. Grabbing onto it, the hand’s owner screamed out in fear as he felt being drained of his life, while his hand turned thin and wrinkly. As he struggled, it got torn off from the elbow, letting him separate himself, still screaming loudly.

“Monster! Demon!”

“Shut it and attack with long range spells!” another roared.

They formed their spells quickly, sending flying fireballs, wind blades and ice spikes towards him. In the end Leinor absorbed the fire and ice powers but the wind landed on his torso, leaving deep cuts, splashing hot, red blood everywhere.

“Yes! Continue!” the owner of the wind affinity shouted, sure of their victory but Leinor just looked down on his torn uniform and injuries.

“Huh, that was sharp, but can you repeat it more than once?” He asked, tilting his head as the wound closed in before their eyes. Leinor just tilted his head and it seemed like nothing happened. “Here is a tip for you guys.” Leinor grinned, pointing at his head “Aim here! I can’t regenerate it yet! If you cut it off, I die! Or try to kill me with one attack… that works too!”

“What kind of monsters are these two…” the two above them murmured. They were sweating heavily because since the rain started, Ren’s fierceness went up significantly. It was clear she used the falling water as an energy source, boosting herself while the violet lightning from her body flashed wildly and widely, making every swing of her spear produce an area of effect attack.

“Let’s finish this!” Ren thought to herself, holding back her spear, pointing it towards the sky as her body lit up with multiple strands of lightning.

“Not good!” the one with the same affinity as her screamed as he felt the movement in the air but it was already late.

One of nature’s most powerful strikes landed on her spear as blue and violet lights intertwined and fused around her spear and body.

“Lightning Rain!” Ren shouted, pointing her spear downwards as arcs of electricity jumped from it to everywhere, drawing down even more. A millisecond later hundreds of other bolts fell from the sky.

All the rods, previously inserted into the ground by Leinor lit up brightly, further guiding the electric rain, showering the land with a crackling, buzzing, monsoon of lightning, roaring like an ancient beast. The weaker cultivators quickly found themselves unable to control their bodies and saw nothing just dancing arcs of electricity before their eyes, only feeling the tingling sensation of nature’s and Ren’s powers running through them. They became human torches, catching on flames, burning up from the inside. Their eyes popped out from their sockets, followed by flames and sparks. Their skin was flaking off and as they released their otherworldly screams, their throats vomited out lightning. It was resonating everywhere around them as they turned to scorched corpses, melting into the ground after falling from the sky, only leaving behind black, nasty and smoking, tar-like remains.

Leinor coughed up blood as he quickly rushed out from the technique’s circle of influence, watching it destroy not just the cultivators inside but the fort below them. It simply tumbled down with loud rumbles, snuffed out by the sound of thunder that was deafening, just like a dragon’s roar in the mythical fables.

“This is the first time we can test it to its fullest!” Leinor chuckled, watching it play out before him and only could see Ren’s outline, standing in the middle of the flashing storm. “Heh, Poli, you have your work cut out before you if you wish to learn Lightning Rain… tsk-tsk, even she can’t perform it without outside help!” he looked towards the still pulsing rods that tried to withstand the destructive force, constantly traveling through them. “Two are already cracked… the output is stronger than predicted.”

When the spell finally ended and the sky started to clear up, only Ren was left floating high above, holding onto her spear. Lightning was still flashing over her body periodically as she was breathing quickly and heavily. Looking down, only black, smoking remains were left behind, nothing more, some just left their shadows burned into the ground, nothing else. The two she fought were also laying down there, their charred bodies twitching constantly, fused together with their clothing.

“LeiLei!” Ren shouted, slowly descending as he hurried inside, arriving next to one assassin but before he could put his hand onto him, to preserve the little life he had left, he breathed his last.

The second one who was still alive was not in any better condition. Even with Leinor’s help he couldn’t form any words because all of his vocal cords were fried, just like his nervous system, barely functioning at all. While Leinor tried to keep him alive, Ren landed beside him, stabbing her finger into his now softer, mushy skull, directly into his brain, searching for information as fast as she could before he succumbed to the horrific injuries of his.

“It was too powerful.” Leinor smirked. If at least their eyes would have remained, Ren could use her bloodline’s gift to hypnotize them, but only burnt sockets looked back at them. Their eyeballs quickly evaporated in the heat.

“No matter. I got what I wanted! Their contact was a noble from the Empire.” Ren pulled out her finger, then just stomped on his head, exploding it like an egg with a ruthless look. “The brain was injured too, but I could salvage some pieces from it. I couldn’t see the face but it was a man. These two were from the Kingdom, the rest are… local cultivators, gathered up by them.”

“Hmf, treacherous bastards.”

“Also…” Ren fell silent for a moment. “There were another few members from the Kingdom of Ten… but they left earlier. Tsk…” she bit onto her thumb, thinking but it was too late to go after those… but their contact here could not run away. “I memorized the resonance of the aura of the traitorous noble. If I ever come face to face with him I’ll know. Also… back home we still have some bastards to interrogate! That fat fuck should point me into the direction to continue the search!”

“Take it easy… you are barely standing…” Leinor whispered, picking her up and as soon as she landed in Leinor’s arms her legs went soft. She wouldn’t be able to stand again for a few hours, that was sure. “Man… this technique injured some of your energy points! You won’t be at 100% at least for a month…”

“Ehehe, well, you are here to carry me~ And feed me~ And bathe me~ Aaaand-” Ren joked, trying to ease the mood of theirs.

“Okay, okay, I get it, you are okay!” He kissed her forehead “Let me collect the remaining rods and let’s go back to the Capital.”

“Mmmm, that’s good, good.” She nodded, blinking her eyes more and more slowly “How many… got destroyed…?”

“Only three in the end, and…” but continued no further as Ren already fell asleep in his arms “Haah… and what if there are still enemies around?” He whispered but Ren just snuggled up to his chest as an answer, completely trusting him to protect her when she is the most vulnerable.