The Hero Returns - Chapter 271
Chapter 271: Chapter 271
* * *
Winds were blowing in.
These winds contained heat that was so warm it verged on being too hot. The aura mixed in among them must have belonged to the Roc Demon King.
“Did he find our target?” Su-hyeun thought.
The Roc Demon King also rode on the Ruyi Jingu Bang to enter the city and went away to look for the Jade Emperor.
The others didn’t believe he would be able to deal with the emperor, but there was no doubting his ability to locate their target faster than anyone else and escape from the scene no matter how dangerous it was.
The one referred to as the “Great Sage who Confuses Heaven” was the fastest Yogoe in existence. And he had already infiltrated and escaped from the Heavenly World successfully in the past, too.
Whatever the case might have been, the role of Su-hyeun and Sun Wukong was to confront the Heavenly World’s forces and reduce their numbers, thereby creating an environment where the Roc Demon King could move around freely as he pleased.
“The direction is…toward the center of the Heavenly World.”
The rough direction had been set. The only thing remaining now would be to chase after that aura.
“As for the third brother…”
Su-hyeun took a look at Sun Wukong who was currently fighting against Erlang Shen.
As if the Heavenly World’s soldiers had a prior agreement, everyone was only looking on as those two men fought and did nothing else. The same thing applied to Su-hyeun.
Not because he believed fighting two on one would be cowardly or anything like that.
But because of Sun Wukong’s choice.
“Do not interfere!”
His voice resounded powerfully when he said that after he spotted Su-hyeun who was thinking of jumping into the fight to help him out.
If he tried to help, then Sun Wukong would have given up fighting against Erlang Shen right there and then.
“I don’t get it, but…”
Su-hyeun thought to himself while staring at Erlang Shen who was using his guandao to smack away the Ruyi Jingu Bang and close the distance between him and Sun Wukong and then at Sun Wukong who threw a punch laden with Dao energy at the charging Erlang Shen.
“I should respect his decision.”
As Su-hyeun wasn’t the type to enjoy fighting, he couldn’t fully figure out Sun Wukong’s current actions. However, that didn’t mean he would trample on Sun Wukong’s wishes and forcibly lend his help.
Since this could very well be the final battle in the lengthy rivalry between Sun Wukong and Erlang Shen stretching back to at least half of the former’s entire lifespan, Su-hyeun really wanted to respect the choices made here today.
Therefore, he had to give up on the notion of helping Sun Wukong in fighting Erlang Shen in the end.
Besides, Sun Wukong wouldn’t be able to hear anything right now, anyway. Getting rid of Erlang Shen wouldn’t be easy at all, so no matter what, he needed to go all the way until the end against the Heavenly World’s warrior.
“Which means I have no choice but to go alone.”
Su-hyeun couldn’t tell for sure if he was strong enough to deal with the Jade Emperor on his own, but with the Roc Demon King, it would be more than doable.
After thinking like that, he got ready to depart, but then…
“Do not come here.”
That was the Roc Demon King’s voice.
And it also happened to carry a different message compared to the signal from earlier saying that the Jade Emperor had been located. Su-hyeun froze up a little at the voice that was carried by the winds.
“He doesn’t want us to go there?”
It wasn’t just the contents of those words either; even his tone of voice seemed different. Unlike his usual self, there was no audible chip on his shoulders, so he simply sounded stiff and cold.
“Did something happen over there?”
Su-hyeun fell into a dilemma.
Should he go?
Or do as he was told and stay put?
His internal conflict was resolved quite quickly, however. He thought that going there to find out what was going on would be the better option of the two.
“Last brother, I’m sure you’ll come despite my serious warning. Well, that’s the kind of person you are. That’s why I’m going to repeat myself. Don’t you dare come here. If you do, I’ll kill you myself.”
He simply sounded like he was viciously growling now. However, it was still different from his usual voice. Worries and anxiety could clearly be felt in the voice carried by the winds.
“Don’t worry. I won’t die here. I will not die, so don’t you move and stay there. I’ll see you later.”
The winds stopped blowing then.
Before making his next move, Su-hyeun looked over at Sun Wukong first.
The words carried by the winds meant for Su-hyeun and Sun Wukong must have been transmitted to everyone present.
The latter, still engaged in the bitter fight against Erlang Shen, displayed a faint hint of some agitation. Erlang Shen suddenly stopped the violent swinging of his guandao after noticing Sun Wukong’s reaction and asked, “Do you wish to go?”
It seemed that he was bothered by Sun Wukong’s reaction just then. Erlang Shen also couldn’t accept the possibility of his potentially final battle against Sun Wukong being affected by an outside factor not related to the skills they possessed.
“No, it’s fine.”
Sun Wukong gripped the Ruyi Jingu Bang again. “Why don’t we continue?”
“If you say so.”
Even though Sun Wukong was doing his best to act as if nothing was wrong, the slight hint of agitation in his eyes was as clear as daylight in Erlang Shen’s acute eyesight.
The change wasn’t all that great, but that single emotion should soon lead to others such as anxiety. And such emotions would serve to create small rifts within the impenetrable wall of defenses put up by Sun Wukong.
“The new God of War is by the Jade Emperor’s side.”
Erlang Shen also heard the situation on the other side and found himself with much more leeway than his opponent.
Even if the Roc Demon King managed to track down the Jade Emperor, not only that Yogoe was incapable of doing anything to the leader of the Heavenly World, but the new God of War was also present in that location.
“We will win this war, then.”
* * *
The winds flying in transformed into thousands of blades and filled up the interior of the underground room. The Roc Demon King, melting into this maelstrom, rushed toward the new God of War.
The two of them collided and were forced back to the opposite sides.
The Roc Demon King spread out his wings to regain his posture and glared at the God of War. “You’re not going anywhere.”
Blood trickled down from the Roc Demon King’s forehead.
That clash from a second ago was his attempt at preventing the God of War from leaving the room.
This new “God of War” wasn’t even looking at him. This being’s only goal, for now, was to escape from the room and nothing else.
“You can never get out of—”
The Roc Demon King who was rushing forward again with his wings spread open had to hurriedly twist his body out of the way. A hand blade that was flying in toward him narrowly missed slicing his chest wide open, but it still landed a solid blow.
As the Roc Demon King slid back on his feet, the God of War escaped through the unguarded exit.
A large wound opened up on the Roc Demon King’s chest, and he started bleeding from it. He still tried to chase after the escaping God of War but couldn’t.
All because the Jade Emperor suddenly blocked his path.
“You know, you’re an emperor, so isn’t it way too dirty and dishonorable for you to sneak attack me like this?”
“If it’s for the purpose of complete and utter annihilation of you bug-like Yogoes, then I don’t mind besmirching my personal honor.”
The Jade Emperor dusted his hand to get rid of the Roc Demon King’s blood. It was as if he was trying to get rid of something filthy.
The Roc Demon King, meanwhile, felt some familiarity at the contempt clearly visible in the Jade Emperor’s eyes.
“He’s similar to me,” he thought.
That glare in the Jade Emperor’s eyes was pretty much identical to the one the Roc Demon King used to look down on humans until now.
The thought of them being “birds of a feather” abruptly popped up in his head, and it made him feel rather rotten inside. To be on the receiving end of such a glare simply because their races were different—it was only natural for the recipient to feel rather displeased by such eyes.
“What’s the matter? Weren’t you boasting so confidently earlier that I can never catch you? Well, go ahead. Run if you can.”
“You sure know how to talk after coming up with such a dastardly scheme, eh?”
The Jade Emperor laughed, “Now take a good look at the sorry sight of the one and only Great Sage who Confuses Heaven. It’s true, isn’t it? You’re no longer the escapee but the one giving the chase.”
It was as the Jade Emperor had said—the Roc Demon King was no longer in the position of running away but someone who now actively chased down his quarry. His range of actions was restricted now, in other words.
One slim strand of hope he held was that the Jade Emperor would not jump into the battle between him and the new God of War.
That old man was the emperor of the Heavenly World, after all. Therefore, it would definitely be a humiliating matter to attack in unison with a God of War to take down a mere Yogoe like the Roc Demon King.
Too bad the current emperor didn’t seem to give a damn about such things as embarrassment or his pride.
No, he only pursued practical benefits. He was the type to stop at nothing as long as he could catch and defeat the swift-footed Roc Demon King and as long as he could ensure a certain victory in this war.
If the Roc Demon King tried to rush outside to track down the God of War, the Jade Emperor would no doubt take aim at his unguarded back.
“If that’s the case…”
There was only one choice he could make now.
“I shall kill the Jade Emperor myself.”
If he were to fight both the God of War and the Jade Emperor at the same time, then he didn’t even have a one percent chance of victory.
But the story would change somewhat if it was the Jade Emperor alone.
One percent. Maybe even less than that.
The odds were so low that he might as well pray for a miracle here, but at least now, he was able to pray for one.
“In that case, why don’t we have a go, then?”
The Roc Demon King, feeling anxious now, made his next move.
The Jade Emperor heard those words and exploded in a loud peal of laughter. “Alright, keep me company for a while.”
As soon as he said that, power quickly filled his fists.
The Jade Emperor’s straight punch thrust forward, causing a circular crater to form on the wall before it caved in completely. He didn’t stop there, however—he even threw off the dragon robe from his body and then began punching again.
The room located deep underground was instantly turned into a destroyed mess.
Maybe it was constructed with special materials because the whole structure didn’t cave in that easily, but from the Roc Demon King’s perspective, he had no time to sweat over such details. Just trying to dodge the Jade Emperor’s barrage of attacks required his everything.
“This damn stinking geezer! He’s so damn fast,” he inwardly complained.
Despite his age, the Jade Emperor was still full of vitality.
Every single one of his punches contained an enormous amount of compressed energy. Not only was his speed exceptional, but he was also throwing punches as if he could predict how the Roc Demon King would react next.
Even as he tried to swiftly dodge the barrage of punches, the Roc Demon King couldn’t evade everything, and a punch eventually landed on a portion of his shoulder.
He staggered from the impact force and hurriedly swung his wings.
Jet-black air currents quickly swirled around the Roc Demon King. These soon became the shields that protected him and, at the same time, spread around to threaten the Jade Emperor.
“I…I need to stop…him…”
The fresh blood that trickled down from his shoulder stained the floor. It seemed that he wouldn’t get to use his wings effectively from now on.
But just before he could try to mend his wounds…
“It’s time for you to go to hell.”
A massive hand emitting a golden glow exploded past the black-colored storm winds and invaded his barrier.
That gigantic hand was already right above the Roc Demon King’s head.
The air currents he had created served to not only erase all surrounding presence but also block the opponent’s vision. Meaning, not only did they fail to block the Jade Emperor’s attack, but his own technique also ended up exposing him to the danger instead.
“It’s too late…”
Just before that golden-colored palm could crush the Roc Demon King’s body…
Signaled by a heavy metallic noise, the gigantic hand of the Jade Emperor was deflected upward. At the same time, the Roc Demon King caught sight of the back of a familiar figure.
That back belonged to none other than Su-hyeun.
He stood between the Roc Demon King and the Jade Emperor and then observed that gigantic hand. While thinking that it was a pretty unique technique, he looked at the Roc Demon King behind him. “Brother, seeing how happy you sounded just now, you must be really pleased to see me.”
“You know, you seriously don’t listen to your elders.”
Although those words sounded like criticism, they failed to disguise the happiness contained within them.
Su-hyeun saw that reaction and thought that he made the right decision in coming here. He smirked a little and asked, “But why did you tell us not to come here? You look so happy to see me here and all.”
“That message wasn’t meant for you, though. No, wait. It was for you too, in a way. I figured that if you came, then the third brother would have shown up, too.”
“Is there a reason for him to not come here?”
“Yeah, there was. Not anymore, though.” The Roc Demon King’s tone of voice became much more serious in an instant. “Listen, last brother. You should just leave this place to me and go outside and then quickly search for a monkey with a big physique instead. That guy is the new God of War, so you gotta get rid of him right away.”
“A monkey? The new God of War is a monkey…? No, before that. Brother, what can you do here by yourse—?”
“You gotta hurry up!”
The Roc Demon King must have been really anxious because he even slammed the wall with his wing as he shouted. “You must never let that bastard meet Wukong…No matter what.”