‘Yiming… What kind of armor do you like?’ Bai Ze’s voice suddenly rang in Li Yiming’s head.
‘I like the way you looked in that demonic armor, but the color was too dark…’
Bai Ze’s entire body was suddenly covered with glittering runes.
“What are you up to?” Li Yiming felt very uneasy.
“Nothing, I was just thinking you’re always wearing ragged clothes while your enemies are in shining armor…”
“Bai Ze!” Li Yiming appeared right next to Bai Ze and put his hand on her shoulder. Her body suddenly dissolved and slowly spread onto Li Yiming’s arm.
“Oh?” Mr. Kong glanced suspiciously, but his expression remained indifferent.
After a blinding flash, Li Yiming erupted from the light, wearing the same armor he wore in Shangbei. This time, however, the armor was colored silver.
“Bai Ze…” Fang Shui’er frowned as she touched her own crystal armor. She used to have a bird with colorful feathers as her own summon, but it also chose to sacrifice itself in order to protect her.
The moment Bai Ze became his armor, Li Yiming knew that she had given up her life. However, instead of being angry or sad, he looked up at Mr. Kong coldly.
“Do you know why the millions of beasts followed Wukong’s lead and fought against Heaven’s Laws?”
Mr. Kong stayed silent.
“Do you know why the seven sages followed him?”
“You don’t understand him,” Li Yiming said.
“...” Mr. Kong froze.
“You don’t understand what it means to be a guardian. Even if you wear Wukong’s armor, you’ll be nothing but an incomplete imitation.”
“Who said I want to become him? He’s a coward who gave up our cause at the last moment!” Mr. Kong suddenly roared in anger.
“That’s why I’m saying you don’t understand him…” Li Yiming repeated as he prepared his attack.
“Why should I even try? I’m in control of Heaven’s Laws now! I’m invincible! I’ll wipe this world clean and build a new one, a better one! I’m not him, I’m better than him!” Mr. Kong’s voice echoed through the clouds, ringing even louder than the massive drums which were beating beyond them as the rows of Heavenly soldiers marched down upon the world.
“The clouds are no longer hiding my sight, and the earth is no longer restraining my path! When all of the gods in this world bow down to me, and all of the mortals tremble before me, why do I even need to become him?”
A window to Hangzhou suddenly emerged over the head of every single person in the world.
“Let the world see the price to be paid for challenging me…” Mr. Kong let out a sinister smile.
“Our wedding might not happen after all...” Li Yiming turned toward Liu Meng, removed his mask, and said in a gentle voice.
“I don’t even think I proposed, actually,” Li Yiming added.
“You said that you liked seeing me dance, so I’ll do just that. That’s going to be my proposal, right here, right now.” Finishing his sentence, Li Yiming began to dance with his sword, tracing multiple arcs of light in the air.
Liu Meng burst into tears as she stared at Li Yiming, not wanting to miss a single moment.
Even Mr. Kong looked at Li Yiming, interested in what he had to offer — he wanted to crush Li Yiming’s last hope to release his own anger.
Li Yiming incorporated both what he had learned from Wu Yun and Aunt Wu into his last dance. He leaped from cloud to cloud, leaving behind light replicates of his sword as he jumped around. He gazed at Liu Meng lovingly, whispered to her the name of his choreography. “The Nine Songs into the Sword of Reincarnation…”
As Li Yiming announced the title, he pointed at Mr. Kong, and all of the swords shot toward his target like a waterfall.
“Interesting…” Mr. Kong faded away once again from Li Yiming’s attack.
“Oh? A formation?” Mr. Kong frowned.
“So what? I’m going to destroy your precious little world. Let’s see what you can do.” Following Mr. Kong’s order, his golden troops continued to descend from the clouds.
Liu Meng looked at Li Yiming one last time and her expression gradually turned cold. It was a fight against all odds, with no way out.
“Go!” Liu Meng dashed toward the sky, her tenebrous flame trailing her. The remnants of the guardians also flew into the sky, fighting for a slim chance at survival despite overwhelming odds.
‘Help me…’ Just as the mutated soldiers aimed their rifles at the sky, a low voice was heard in their head.
Some soldiers turned toward what remained of Sai Gao, which seemed to be still moving, barely clinging onto life. They all understood that they could help him; they all had to return the blood they had received from him and offer their life force as the ultimate sacrifice. The soldiers’ expressions of terror were immediately superseded by determination as they all turned into splashes of blood.
As blood from hundreds of soldiers flowed back toward Sai Gao, he suddenly emitted the roar of a dragon. Sai Gao’s new form burst out of what remained of his old one — he was reborn anew as a dragon, ready to unleash his fury on Mr. Kong’s forces.
As Liu Meng, Li Huaibei, Fan Shui’er led what remained of the guardians, they each unleashed their strongest attack. Liu Meng created wave after wave of inextinguishable flames; Li Huaibei swung widely with his sword; Fang Shui’er shot out a volley of crystal arrows; even the ordinary guardians charged into Mr. Kong’s forces, all of them fighting until the bitter end, and taking down as many as they could with them as they perished.
“You…” Mr. Kong frowned. The clash reminded him of his own fight under Wukong’s lead many years ago, only this time, the roles were swapped. He was now the one standing tall beyond the clouds, casting down his cold gaze as his enemies charged at him in a suicidal attack, choosing to break rather than bend. For a brief moment, he began questioning his own beliefs, but was brought back to reality once he thought back of Wukong’s betrayal.
“Kill her first!” Mr. Kong raised his arm, and a ray of golden light landed on Liu Meng — killing Liu Meng would undoubtedly drive Li Yiming insane. The golden warriors instantly let go of their opponents and all flew toward Liu Meng.
A metallic chime was heard as Li Yiming’s sword projections began swirling about furiously. Nearing his limit, Li Yiming chose to wager everything on one final blow.
“Thunderous Strike!” Li Yiming’s hoarse voice came as a purple glow came from the heart of the tornado of blades.
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