Reborn: Evolving From Nothing / Reborn: Evolving From Nothing 229 Eyes
“You dared to touch my full-strength Annihilation Energy with your bare hands.” Zero’s words came out wheezing. The man snorted harshly when he noticed this. He promptly punched his own chest, forcibly inflating his injured lung as he returned to speaking at a normal level. His body was currently in ruins, but the fact that he had virtually infinite energy meant it was automatically repairing itself.
“The personification of Annihilation itself… You will never move that arm agai-” Zero’s voice brutally cut off.
Before the Divine Golden Lion’s very eyes, Sun Wukong raised his right arm up, flexing his fingers as he casually yawned.
“It did sting a little. It will probably take me a couple of days to fully recover.”
“No… No! That isn’t possible!” Zero’s voice contained a hint of shock and horror as he saw this, looking at Sun Wukong as if he was a freakish monster.
“I annihilated the essence of your arm! It is burnt from the fabric of existence itself! That’s impossible!” He gazed at the monkey with a look in his eye that hinged on insanity, as if this action was making him question his own sanity.
“I won’t- I can’t- that isn’t possible!!” Zero’s eyes glowed bright red again as he rushed forward, ignoring everything else as he blasted towards Sun Wukong. The energy he had gathered around himself was abruptly fully thrown forward into his sword, abandoning all attempts at defense as he threw everything he had for one final attack.
If Zero had been paying careful attention to his surroundings, he would’ve noticed the Aura Sun Wukong gave off shivering slightly every time the monkey moved his burnt arm. He might have even seen the Aura of light condensing slightly under Sun Wukong’s arm, twisting in odd, puppeteering-like ways.
If he hadn’t been so caught up on Sun Wukong’s casual expression and words, he might even have noticed that, for a brief moment, Sun Wukong’s body had shivered in shock, as if he had just taken an extremely serious injury.
However, a perfect storm of coincidences had led to a perfect situation where everything went in just the direction that Zero missed all of this.
As Zero rushed in at Sun Wukong, the monkey gazed at the incoming attacker with a sense of resignation. His eyes gleamed as he raised his uninjured left hand and tapped on his heart.
“Release the Second Seal: Life Condense.”
Sun Wukong’s vast Aura shivered…
And then vanished completely.
The change was so abrupt, Dorian’s jaw fell open in shock when he noticed it. The sheer speed in which the Aura vanished in totality was incredibly jarring, blindingly noticeable even to Anomalies that were off to the side.
A hint of confusion appeared in Zero’s gaze, but none of his ferocity faded as he shot through the air. In just a fraction of a second, he arrived in front of Sun Wukong.
Zero’s sword swung down like a planet collapsing as it crashed down. This attack was fueled by the very essence of Annihilation itself.
Sun Wukong raised his left hand to meet that sword.
And, without any fanfare, the two collided.
The world seemed to freeze.
In one moment, Zero’s sword was about to split Sun Wukong, and the ground behind him for miles, in twain.
In the next…
Sun Wukong caught Zero’s full-powered, all-out attack with merely two fingers.
There was no explosion of force, no shockwave or grand impact. Instead, there was merely stillness as the force of Zero’s attack seemed to dissipate.
The red Annihilation energy vanished as if it had never existed.
Zero’s mouth trembled as the sword he had formed vanished, falling apart into nothingness. His gaze took on unknown emotion as he looked at Sun Wukong silently, saying nothing.
Sun Wukong gazed back, a sad look appearing in his eyes.
“Child…” He shook his head,
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Zero stumbled back as he heard that, his breath coming in rapidly as the impact of today’s fight began to sink in. His body was in tatters, extremely heavily injured while facing an opponent that struck fear to his very core.
As the Divine Golden Lion realized that, he abruptly jumped backwards more than 100 meters.
“Lion… if you cannot defeat me, how can you hope to defeat HIM? I’ll tell you now…” Sun Wukong’s voice took back its grand air,
“HE defeated me when I was in my prime.”
These words seemed to sink into Zero’s very soul as he looked at Sun Wukong.
And, right after that, he fled.
The air around him seemed to scream as he tore open a hole in reality. A small, forest glade was revealed, alongside a warm, sunny sky. The Secondborn didn’t wait to respond to Sun Wukong as he retreated, throwing himself through to the other side with a sense of urgency.
Before that magical portal shut, Sun Wukong yelled out one last phrase, words full of menace and majesty.
“These Anomalies are under my protection. The next time you come for them, child, I will kill you myself. Do not mistake my mercy for weakness.”
The portal shut as Zero made his escape.
A half-second after that, Sun Wukong’s body shook. Blood dripped out of his eyes, his ears, and his mouth as he stood absolutely still. If one looked closely at him, at that exact moment, it would be possible to see his skin itself writhing, as if he was in pure, unadulterated agony.
For all that he gave off the image of a godly warrior, Sun Wukong’s almighty power had a major flaw.
Many years ago, he had been mortally injured. Not by an enemy or a mistake he made in cultivation, but instead by a man he trusted and loved as a friend.
Yukeli betrayed him.
By all rights, Sun Wukong should be dead. The injuries he’d suffered had permanently damaged his soul itself. Despite that, he stuck around, not because he wanted to, but because he felt he had to.
For he knew that one day… one day Yukeli would be back. And the world would not understand that man like he did. Not even Arthur truly understood Yukeli.
But Sun Wukong did. And he knew that he would be needed.
For it was what Ausra would have done.
Whenever Sun Wukong used any of his Seals, he would experience a huge amount of backlash. The more Seals he used, the bigger the backlash.
Right now, he had been forced to use all but his last, final Seal. As a result, the backlash he suffered was something that would’ve driven a lesser being insane. Every single cell in his body seemed to be rebelling, his insides twisting and ravaged by energy.
However, he was not immobilized, nor was he powerless.
In the end, the agony he was undergoing was just that.
Agony. The pain was blinding, but he could deal with it as long as he had strength.
“Huh.” The monkey looked down at his body, shock coloring his tone as he walked back over to where Dorian and the others were.
“I can see only a little bit more, I should be about to die… My old injuries have risen up and I’ve strained my body far beyond what I should as a result. But…” The monkey shook his head.
“I feel fine?” Sun Wukong looked down at his hands in genuine surprise. Well, he didn’t feel fine. He felt awful. But he certainly didn’t feel like he was about to die.
Dorian caught the back half of Sun Wukong’s statement, his eyes lighting up as he heard Sun Wukong proclaim he was fine.
“That’s great news!” He slowly stood up, smiling at the odd monkey. He had met Sun Wukong before, but couldn’t possibly have expected the warrior would reappear here and save him. Dorian was still getting over his shock at the abrupt reversal.
As Dorian spoke, a plain-looking grey humanoid stepped between Dorian and Sun Wukong silently. Both of them ignored the grey creature completely as the being walked up in front of the exhausted monkey.
“Yes, young Dorian. You will not hear me disagreeing.” Sun Wukong smiled at Dorian. The monkey winced slightly as he looked at his right burnt right arm.
The arm was dead and lame as it could be, showing not even the slightest hint of movement.
Dorian took a deep breath before he spoke again, a wave of exhaustion and pain hitting him. He forced himself to stay conscious, steadily drawing upon various Laws to help recover as he continued,
“You have my utmost gratitude, Lord Wukong. I truly thought I would die today.” Dorian bowed his head towards the monkey.
As he spoke, he felt something slightly odd. An unsettling feeling that he couldn’t quite place, at the edge of his mind. He didn’t feel like he was in any danger, nor did he sense any ill intent. As a result, the feeling vanished, but he took notice of it, keeping his eyes alert as he scanned the surroundings.
When he didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary, he continued on,
“I couldn’t fully take in your battle with Zero.” He had been focused much more on healing himself than the outside world.
“What exactly too-” Before he could finish his sentence, he froze as he witnessed something horrifying.
A plain, unassuming grey-skinned humanoid appeared, shimmering into existence before his very eyes. A creature that Dorian himself was very familiar with. A Grey Mantor, beings that had the Ability to step outside of Fate itself.
This creature appeared right in front of the exhausted figure of Sun Wukong.
Before Dorian could process this, before Sun Wukong could react, before anyone or anything could make even the slightest movements…
Mello tore out Sun Wukong’s eyes.