Chapter 80: Slaughter (2)

With a fierce shout, Aleks once again thrust his hands towards Grigor sending several tendrils flashing towards him. Grigor was caught somewhat by surprise due to the number of tendrils and was able to avoid several more attacks before finally being whacked heavily across the face. Grigor was sent tumbling backwards for several yards before he was able to stop his tumbling by grasping the earth ferociously with his claws. He was still dragged further by the inertia before finally coming to a stop. The attack had momentarily stunned him and he shook his head, regaining his clarity after several breaths, but it was too late. Aleks had calmly walked forward closing the distance between them despite Grigor having been pushed back and his tendrils whipped out once more grabbing Grigor and twisting around him. They sucked the vitality out of his body causing Grigor to gasp in shock and terror. He felt his vitality rapidly leaving his body as he slowly, but surely was drained to death.

Once Grigor gasped his last, the tendrils dropped his body to the ground and dissipated. There were no more tendrils visible, but the battlefield where they fought was utterly destroyed from their battle. The ground had been completely overturned and large gashes and craters were visible in a large radius around where Aleks and Grigor fought. Aleks, who was as calm as the most serene of lakes, only looked quietly at the body of Grigor which had returned to its Human form but looked much like a mummified corpse. The warriors of the tribes and the expeditionary soldiers were completely silent. You couldn’t even hear a single breath as they stared at Aleks with a variety of emotions. What they had seen was far beyond their understanding and was much like legend or myth. This was the realm of Legendary figures that they had no hope of ever attaining.

Grobak was the only one who wasn’t shocked and was grinning from ear to ear. He had no doubt his master was great and would easily win. Who else would the great Grobak dare bow his head to? Or at least so he thought. With a satisfied expression, Grobak began to roar in a loud voice and raised his axe high into the sky.

“CHARGE!!!”

Without waiting for his warriors to come to their senses, Grobak pounded forward at a brisk pace while roaring. It took a moment, but the warriors finally responded to his shouting and they all began to storm forward like a raging tide. Magical glows lit up the body of hundreds of warriors and beasts were magically summoned amidst their numbers. The tide of warriors rushed across the battlefield, passing Aleks who remained exactly where he had stood when Grigor died. He watched on for a moment without making any further motions, but then he suddenly leaned forward and his mask distorted releasing a howl which shook the earth.

Screeching wraiths poured forth out of his gaping maw and flew rapidly ahead of the rushing warriors. The wraiths smashed into the expeditionary army which was already on tenterhooks due to Aleks’s overpowering display of strength in the fight against Grigor. Droves of soldiers fell immediately dead, their souls having been ripped from their bodies and devoured by the ravenous wraiths.

Grobak followed right after the flight of wraiths and became a reaper’s scythe, cutting down soldiers as if they were chaff. The warriors soon poured in after him, filling up the gap in the enemy’s formation formed by Aleks’s ‘Banshee’s Wail’ attack which had instantly killed over a thousand enemy soldiers and absorbed their ‘Soul Potential’ for Aleks’s use. He could have killed more, but he only intended to aid Grobak and his army in obtaining victory, not claiming victory for himself.

To the expeditionary army’s credit, they didn’t rout and the officers who were in command of the army quickly regained some semblance of order and attempted to reorganize the formation while putting up a resistance against the tribal warriors. The soldiers were definitely filled with fear, but their discipline and status as veterans allowed them to continue to fight. Despite their best efforts to resist, they were barely holding on against the onslaught of tribal warriors. They had lost a considerable amount of soldiers in that one attack by Aleks and now Grobak was leading his forces deep into enemy lines, cutting through them with ease.

He was a powerful warrior and with his rage type abilities, there wasn’t a single one of the expeditionary officers who could hold their own against him for any period of time. He cut down many with relative ease and was like a god of death as he slaughtered dozens of foes in quick succession. Grobak was completely in his element, slaughtering his way through his enemies while soaked in blood. The fighting was fierce, but eventually the expeditionary army buckled under the strength of the tribal warriors who were bolstered by their high morale and their confidence in Aleks’s and Grobak’s strength.

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Only once over half of the expeditionary forces had fallen did they begin to truly buckle and their formation collapsed. It was a complete and utter slaughter as the tribal warriors broke through their lines and caused them to rout. No matter how experienced of soldiers they were, they were unable to keep their fear in check after so many of them had died in such a short period of time. Their officers attempted to organize a retreat but they had lost complete control as their men began to panic and flee. This only caused more of them to be slaughtered as the tribal warriors did not halt their pace in the slightest.

Aleks continued to watch on without moving throughout the battle. It was only at this moment, when the enemy was fleeing in panic, did he finally decide to make a final move.

“Not one of you will leave this place alive!”

Once more Aleks’s lurched forward, the mask on his face distorting until it appeared as if there were a gaping hole where the mouth should be. The sound of countless shrieking wraiths blasted out once more, crowding out the sound of the slaughter taking place. The sound caused shivers to spread down the spines of all who heard their weeping wails. The expeditionary soldiers who were fleeing had already routed in panic, but after hearing that dreaded sound they went mad in fear. Many clutched their heads in pain and terror as the wraiths rapidly flew over the battlefield and harvested their souls. Not a single soldier survived of the enemy’s army, their entire force had been slaughtered down to the last. The ground was littered with corpses that had expressions of absolute terror, some had even attempted to gouge out their eyes in madness. The tribal warriors had already stopped their advance and many of them fell to their knees in worship and awe. They thanked the one they had taken as their new god for sparing their lives from such a horrid fate. They had never seen any scene so horrid as this, but being a people who worshipped strength, they were awed rather than disgusted.

The amount of ‘Soul Potential’ that Aleks harvested from this battle was immense. Several thousand Intermediate class fighters, several dozen Advanced rank commanders, and even a peak Master class being. He was greatly satisfied with the amount gained, a whopping three hundred and eight thousand ‘Soul Potential’. The only unfortunate thing was that efficiency was only at twenty percent. Since the way he obtained ‘Soul Potential’ was something which defied the normal laws of the world, he could not obtain the entirety of the ‘Soul Potential’ of beings through this method. He could only obtain a portion, otherwise the ‘Soul Potential’ acquired would have been well over a million. Nonetheless, this amount of ‘Soul Potential’ meant he could not only upgrade his subordinates, but had more flexibility with his own abilities.

However, although it may seem like a lot of SP, in reality it wasn’t as much as one would think. Upgrading beings beyond advanced class was exponentially more expensive. Just the class up would cost ten thousand SP and that didn’t take into account the cost of raising levels. In order to upgrade a subordinate from level 90 to level 100, which was the peak of master class, would cost twenty thousand SP in total. This did not take into account abilities which ranged in cost from five thousand to ten thousand SP. In order to upgrade Grobak to the peak of master class and to grant him more powerful abilities could easily cost upwards of fifty thousand SP or more depending on what was chosen. Once he upgraded both Lenia and Nelay as well, that seemingly high number of SP could easily be reduced by half.

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Nonetheless, Aleks was pleased. At some point Nelay appeared at his side and the two once more mounted the horse with Nelay returning to her former relaxing position which Aleks continued to ignore. Grobak had already ordered his warriors to sift through the battlefield and take whatever weapons or other valuables they could find. This was the normal tradition of the warriors on the Steppes. This was their reward for a battle well fought. Of course, Grobak had his eyes on a specific weapon, Grigor’s axe. After giving out his orders, he rushed over to where Aleks was seated on his horse, smiled mischievously at Aleks and then proceeded to shamelessly take Grigor’s axe from his corpse with a satisfied grin.

He then once more turned to Aleks and without shame asked, “Master, where’s my reward?”

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