Chapter 1076: A Battle Between Top-Class Armies (II)
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Boomboomboom! The heavy swords of the Beheader Army were constantly blocked by the Xuanwu Army. Even though each attack seemed capable of sundering mountains, they were useless against the Xuanwu Army. The eight thousand soldiers of the Xuanwu Army seemed to be firmly rooted in the ground and fused with the earth. There was even a moment where the Beheader Army felt like they were attacking a mountain of steel, not a body of flesh and blood.
It would be fine if the Xuanwu Army were just skilled in defense, but these soldiers also had vicious and weighty attacks that could tear apart the heavens. Even the soldiers of the Beheader Army were extremely threatened by them.
“Everyone, hear my order! Follow me and kill these barbarians!”
Zhao Fengchen’s voice resounded over the world. He stood tall, his long hair blowing about in the wind and his hands clenching his Wootz Steel greatsword, ‘Earth’s Scar’. He slashed it down, and like a lightning bolt flitting across the skies, a pitch-black Sword Qi more than one hundred feet long howled through the air and descended into the dense ranks of the Beheader Army.
There was a massive explosion and a chorus of screams. Zhao Fengchen’s sword immediately tore a massive gap through the tight ranks of the Beheader Army. Wherever the edge of the sword passed, the soldiers of the Beheader Army were knocked flying into the air.
As for those soldiers of the Beheader Army who faced down the tip of the sword, they didn’t even have time to scream before Zhao Fengchen’s dreadful Sword Qi obliterated their bodies.
Countless Xuanwu Army soldiers charged into the gap.
The Xuanwu Divine Art!
This was the technique that Wang Chong had given Zhao Fengchen back then.
The Xuanwu was an ancient divine beast with the neck of a snake, the body of a turtle, and the head of a dragon. Besides formidable defensive capabilities, it also had astonishing offensive power. The eight thousand soldiers of the Imperial Army had cultivated the Xuanwu Divine Art and had obtained the traits of the Xuanwu. They could attack while defending and defend while attacking.
Just as the Xuanwu Army under Zhao Fengchen was on the verge of breaking through the Beheader Army’s defense, another terrific explosion came from more than four hundred feet away.
There was a frenzied storm of sand and stone, and then ten-some Xuanwu Army soldiers screamed as they were blasted into the air by a terrifying wave of energy. Before they had even hit the ground, their blood was already misting the air.
Zhao Fengchen grimaced at this sight and immediately turned his head to where the explosion had come from. What he saw was an Arab Brigadier General, his entire body pitch-black as if made of steel. Both hands gripped his sword as he plunged into the ranks of the Xuanwu Army.
Bang! A Xuanwu Army soldier waved his sword and charged at this Arab general, but a single palm from this general crumpled the Xuanwu Army soldier’s thick armor. A majestic surge of energy traveled through the armor into the soldier’s body and made all the blood in his body explode out in a bloody mist.
Without even a groan, the Xuanwu Army soldier dropped to the ground.
Zhao Fengchen paled, then suddenly altered course and began to charge at the Beheader Army commander. Clang! A blazing halo that was as heavy as steel erupted from beneath Zhao Fengchen’s feet. The edge of this halo was even sharper than a sword. Swoosh! Several Beheader Army soldiers jumped through the air to lunge at Zhao Fengchen, but before they could even get close, they were struck by the halo. Kaclack! These soldiers had all the bones in their body shattered by Zhao Fengchen’s halo, and their corpses fell to pieces as they were sent flying outward.
“Barbarians! I’d like to see just how capable all of you are!”
Zhao Fengchen had an icy expression and his killing intent soared to the heavens. In his view, a manly man needed to imitate Fu Jiezi1 and serve on the border to kill barbarians. Leading this expedition of eight thousand Xuanwu Army soldiers to the distant Talas could be said to fulfill Zhao Fengchen’s greatest dream.
Across the eight desolations and the four seas, wherever the light of the sun and moon touched, no barbarian could scorn the Central Plains, and no one was permitted to so brashly kill the soldiers of the Great Tang!
You are doomed!
Zhao Fengchen stared at the Arab Beheader Army commander, his eyes narrowing. Carrying his Earth’s Scar, he strode forward.
At almost the same time, the distant Karim licked his lips as he spotted Zhao Fengchen, a bloodthirsty light flitting through his eyes.
Karim had participated in the final battle with the Sassanid Dynasty. As the commander of the Beheader Army, Karim couldn’t even remember how many enemy commanders he had killed. One infidel general after another had displayed their courage and confidence before him, but in the end, he had beheaded all of them and stomped on their corpses.
“In a little while, I will personally take your head. Let’s see how much ability you really have.”
Karim viciously laughed.
Hwoooo! There was a rush of wind as bloody mist began to drift out from beneath Karim’s feet. Under Karim’s feet was a sea of blood and a mountain of corpses, all of them belonging to the Tang. Karim couldn’t even keep count of the number of people he had killed since the start of the assault on the Tang’s left flank.
But no matter how many people he killed, Karim still desired to kill even more.
Extracting his sword from the corpse of a Xuanwu Army soldier, Karim confidently strode toward the distant Zhao Fengchen. At almost the same time, Zhao Fengchen gripped his Earth’s Scar and strode toward Karim. Around him, one Beheader Army soldier after another was felled. No matter how many there were, any who approached Zhao Fengchen would be cut down like a weed.
Zhao Fengchen left rivers of blood and piles of corpses in his wake. These powerful soldiers who had taken part in the wars with the Sassanid Dynasty and Kushan2 as well as many other countries were nothing but ants before a powerful existence like Zhao Fengchen.
Bang! A roaring Beheader Army soldier leapt upon Zhao Fengchen like a tiger, but a moment later, an enormous surge of energy collided with his body. This energy passed through his armor and impacted against his organs and meridians. This veteran Beheader Army soldier who had killed countless other soldiers now died without even a groan.
Before his corpse even had time to drop, a saber sent it flying dozens of feet. It drew an arc through the air before landing in front of Karim, creating a hole in the ground and causing blood to splash and sputter.
Karim’s eyes twitched as they flashed with anger. There was no question that this eastern infidel was challenging him.
“If you want to die, I’ll fulfill your wish!”
Karim’s eyes turned cold as he picked up speed, his feet thundering against the earth and his body blurring.
With a bestial roar, Karim soared into the sky and shot toward Zhao Fengchen like an eagle.
“Barbarian, hand over your life!”
Zhao Fengchen’s body exploded with Stellar Energy as he also accelerated. Rumble! The earth trembled as Zhao Fengchen soared into the sky to meet Karim.
Sword and saber clashed with a thunderous explosion. The heavens themselves seemed about to tear apart as lightning crackled. The sound of their collision suppressed the clashing of all the other thousands of weapons on the battlefield. Stellar Energy exploded in a shockwave that sent the soldiers of the Beheader Army and the Xuanwu Army flying like ragdolls.
With a roar, Zhao Fengchen changed up his movement technique, transforming into a thin lightning bolt that streaked through the air with unimaginable speed, attacking Karim from every direction. His attacks all had enough weight to cleave open mountains and sever rivers.
On the other end, Karim’s large sword was also moving like a lightning bolt, stirring up a storm as it slashed out in every direction. The halos of the pair were also constantly intersecting and clashing. Bangbangbang! Intense metallic clattering rang out all over the battlefield.
As the two commanders battled in the air, on the ground, the thousands of Xuanwu Army soldiers and Beheader Army soldiers were also in pitched battle. Clangclangclang! Sabers gleamed and swords flashed, mixing together in the melee.
Clang! A Xuanwu Army soldier was caught off guard, and a Beheader Army soldier managed to stab his sword through a gap in his defense and into his ribs. At almost the same moment, the Xuanwu Army soldier counterattacked by stabbing into the chest of his foe through a chink in his armor. Both only showed a brief flicker in their eyes before continuing to attack each other, each acting like it had been someone else that had been wounded.
Bang! These two soldiers engaged in an intense battle, their weapons clashing so many times that their edges were pockmarked with dents and gaps. But neither showed any sign of backing down.
This was a battle of top-class armies, a contest of supreme wills. The Beheader Army would not retreat, and the Xuanwu Army, a part of the Great Tang’s supreme Imperial Army, also would not retreat.
With bitter battles, there would be death, and as the Xuanwu Army and Beheader Army fought, both armies quickly began to suffer large losses. Squelchsquelchsquelch! The meaty sounds of weapons meeting with flesh were constant. Thump! Thump! A Beheader Army soldier crashed to the ground, his body a mangled mess. At almost the same moment, a Xuanwu Army soldier also crumpled down.
Blood and death were the best seasoning on the battlefield. Slowly, the eyes of the Xuanwu Army soldiers began to turn red.
As more and more soldiers fell, the battle intensified, and yet this was only the beginning.
1. Fu Jiezi was a man of the Western Han Dynasty. During the reign of Emperor Zhao of Han, he traveled to the kingdom of Loulan in the Western Regions. The King of Loulan had killed several Han envoys, so Fu Jiezi was tasked with assassinating him. Fu Jiezi first enticed the king with treasure and wine, and then took him aside for a private conversation, whereupon Fu Jiezi stabbed the king to death. With the death of the king, the Han court set up the king’s younger brother as the new king and also had the name of the country changed from Loulan to Shanshan.↩
2. The Kushan Empire was an empire that spanned across parts of India and Central Asia and was active in the second and third century, centuries before the rise of the Great Tang. By the third century, it had fragmented into various kingdoms which were eventually conquered by the Sassanids.↩