Using Master Lang’s influence, Chu Shen was easily able to borrow a Mountain Eagle to take him back home. He set out three days later with Master Lang, wanting to arrive early for his parents. Soon, he found himself flying home.
The carriage that was mounted on the back of the Mountain Eagle was shaken by the explosion. Master Lang and Chu Shen both calmly exited the carriage, standing on the back of the eagle now. Outside, they both saw a horde of golden scaled birds carrying people on their backs. A large blood-red bird bore a man carrying a giant axe on its head.
This man started to yell at them. “Honored sirs! I am sorry to ask this of you, but the Golden Eagle Sect has fallen on hard times! Since you are flying over our sect, I am afraid you will have to pay the toll!”
Master Lang turned to the driver. “What is this ‘Golden Eagle Sect’ these men are talking about? I’ve never heard of it before.”
The driver shook his head. “I’m afraid there is no sect. Instead, they are a bandit group that travel to and fro while calling themselves this name. Supposedly, the bandit leader wanted to make a sect once, but he liked robbing people too much so he called his gang a sect instead. He is very dangerous and is a Martial Emperor.”
Master Lang nodded. “I see. So essentially, they just want to rob us.” He ignored the man’s level since he hadn’t reached the Nature stage yet. Without it, the man couldn’t challenge him.
Chu Shen grinned. “Well Master Lang, I wanted to show you how I fight. Now is the perfect time, since they have provided us with some targets.”
Master Lang shook his head. “How about I give you a lesson on what my powers are. If there are any left, you can show me your own. Elders first, after all.”
Chu Shen sighed. “Fine master, go ahead.”
Master Lang withdrew his mace from his spatial ring. “I guess it’s time.” Earth Qi covered his body, turning into earthen-colored armor. He tapped his armor. “This is simply condensed Qi to protect myself. By controlling the Qi, I can also fly. It is very taxing on my energy reserves and I have a maximum flight time of around an hour.”
“Also, as I am sure you are aware by now, we must all create domains. There are many domains earth types can have, but I have the mountain element, a rare form of the earth element. If I had the sand element, my domain could be a sandstorm. A normal earth domain might be spikes of rock emerging from the ground. For me though, it is the gravity domain. I use the pressure of mountains to make my opponents heavier.” A faint mountain appeared behind Master Lang.
Master Lang sighed. “Unfortunately, I never had much luck controlling my domain and couldn’t expand it beyond a hundred feet. Otherwise, I may have become a much better fighter.”
The axe-wielding man was too far away to hear them talking. He could, however, see them. Upon seeing Master Lang pull out an axe, he immediately ordered his men to form six arrowhead formations. This was a formation that he had created that allowed them to create the energy projection of a spear. Using this, each formation would be on par with a late-stage Martial Emperor.
It wouldn’t normally have been possible, but each of his men had soulbonded with their Golden Eagle mounts, allowing them to combine their Qi and the beasts’ Qi together. His men were all at the Martial Army stage and their beasts were at the Martial Scholar stage. He had 42 men with eagles and each formation had 7 men in it.
The axe-wielding man had been lucky and had found a mountain cliff where several Golden Eagle couples had made their nest. He had killed the adults and stolen their eggs. These 47 eggs caused his ambitions to grow, allowing him to make an airborne bandit group. Luckily, he was at the Earth stage, which allowed him to gain some followers. After selling off 5 of the eggs, he was able to equip his men adequately and buy enough resources to advance their cultivation swiftly.
Master Lang saw the bandits get into formation. “Hoh. I just might need your help, Chu Shen. It appears as though these bandits are more organized then I thought.”
The axe-wielding man called out. “Sirs, I don’t believe I am being unreasonable. Pay us ten beast cores of the Martial King stage or their equivalent in spirit stones and we will let you leave unharmed.”
Master Lang flew into the air. “I’m sorry, but any bandit attempting to rob me will have to pay the price.” He swung his mace at the bandit, a mountain flying at the man.
The man waved his axe. “Forward, men! Activate the formation! This is an expert at the Nature Stage. Imagine the wealth he has on him! We still outnumber him and kill him easily enough!”
The bandit leader was truly skilled. Warning his men of the dangers while reassuring them of their success and reminding them of their potential gain was impressive. Truly, he was a charismatic leader.
Six spears formed around the arrowhead formations. Two of the spears charged forth, meeting the mountain. It split in two before crumbling apart. The two spears continued their charge towards Master Lang. The other four spears charged in behind the two spears with the bandit leader in front of them.
The two spears suddenly fell downwards a hundred feet when they got close to Master Lang. They were in range of his gravity domain. 280 feet. The bandit leader paused their charge and called back the two formations that were affected by Master Lang’s domain. He talked with them for a second to see what had caused their sudden falling and determined it was a domain that pressured the opponent.
“Alright men, his domain isn’t lethal and can only hinder us. Charge! Come in from above so that you fall on top of him and kill him that way!” The bandit leader led the way as he flew upwards above the Mountain Eagle. They suddenly dive bombed Master Lang, looking like giant arrows hurtling downwards.
Master Lang swung his mace rapidly, throwing mountains of Qi at the enemy. He concentrated on one of the formations at the front and several mountains smashed into it. The formation easily defended itself against two. The third one caused it to dim, and the sixth caused cracks to appear. Then, the seventh one broke the formation and killed three of the golden eagles. The other four split up and broke out of their dive, clearing the way for the other ones that were following closely behind.
Chu Shen had been watching his master fight and realized that his master’s domain was meant for fighting on the ground. With it active, his enemy couldn’t fly above him and would constantly have to fight the gravity and his master. It could be considered a strong supporting domain. For fights in the sky though, it was a severe disadvantage.
Realizing this, he decided to help out a little bit. The bandits were only 150 feet away, too close for comfort, and they were now well in range of his domain. “Master Lang, I’ll activate my domain now.” Gray fog flowed forth from Chu Shen’s hands, billowing out. Suddenly, the fog expanded to two hundred feet.
Master Lang let out a yelp. “What kind of domain is this, boy? My Qi is vanishing while I’m in it! Don’t tell me you don’t know how to choose who is affected by your domain!?”
Chu Shen grinned sheepishly. The fog was dense, but it was still only energy. One could see through it, which allowed Master Lang to see his face. “I’m still working on it.” The domain had covered the five formations and the bandit leader.
The formations started to dissolve, the energy keeping the formation working being absorbed by the domain. The bandit leader was shocked. “What? Another Nature Realm expert! Not only that, but they have the rare shadow element with a devouring domain!”
Such an element was very rare, only ten people in the last thousand years had awakened the shadow element. Those with a devouring domain were even rarer, only two had ever been recorded in history. No one knew how a devouring domain was created, but those characters were always leading experts in their generation.
Only one thought filled the bandit leader’s head. Flee! “We can’t face them. Hurry! Flee! Split up and separate!”