241 Chapter 241
Zhang Dong looked as Zhan Jie's body was splitting apart. A mountain that was right behind him was in a similar fashion parting to the sides. He had done an overhead downward slash that parted his opponent along with the skies and scenery behind him.
This was a slash that was the crystallization of his past efforts. He put his entire being into it and had vanquished his foe almost instantly.
He floated there without saying anything as he knew that Zhan Jie was no more. The sword strike reached deep and could even sever someone's soul. There was no escape for this man, his soul had been cut and was slowly dissipating.
Zhang Dong looked at the man whose life was slowly fading away. He had a complicated look on his face while stretching his hand forward.
He made a grasping motion and the spatial ring of the man that he had slain flew towards his hand. This wasn't all as the leftover swords, broken or intact started to fly towards him. They all quickly vanished into the ring that they came from after its new owner ordered it.
The blades might not have been the best quality but there were a lot of them. He could use them to bolster his sects army or use the metals for resources.
He looked at the people below. The fight was over and his faction was victorious. He could see widespread destruction. The flying ships that battled with the Argonaut 1 were all destroyed. Turn to timber they were smoking down on the ground below or in the process of falling.
Compared to the ships the rest of the cultivators looked better. The large cannons of his Gungnir class ship weren't that great against small fast-moving targets.
The Argonaut was the first of its kind but more were in the works. He chose to go with the Norse mythology and named the type after one of the god's fabled weapons, a spear. For all intensive purposes it was now tested and tried, the opposing sect had no way of piercing this large treasure's force field.
The scared people from the Limitless Sword Society trembled. Their sect master was slain in a one on one battle, something that he prided himself in. From the three sects that surrounded Zhang Dong's lands, he was seen as the strongest combatant. Now his two identical parts were slowly falling down to the ground below.
"Listen to me people of the Limitless Sword Society! Your leader is dead, will you surrender peacefully or will you resist?"
The only people left here were at most at core formation level. The two elders that lost their soul-beasts to the particle beam were long gone. Matt didn't have the time or resources to go chase after the duo.
He needed to get back to New Spirit Spring City to his wife and kids. Then there was the problem with his favorite squid faced monster he needed to take care of.
He still wanted to give these people a choice. He wasn't one for senseless killing but this attack was a clear declaration of war. He couldn't just let these guys go without any type of punishment. If the tables were turned he would either be dead or turned into some kind of slave. Maybe even used for cultivation materials if they performed any kind of demonic arts.
"You have two choices!"
His booming voice filled the area while the cultivators on swords shivered in fright. They were unable to move as the nascent soul aura from both Zhang Dong and the Argonaut was radiating in all directions.
"Submit and accept a soul binding contract. You will swear to never harm my sect ever again and you will also abandon your current one. You may keep your lives this way and live them out…"
Zhang Dong's aura rose up, even more, the cultivators below were pushed down, unable to raise their heads.
"Or you will die here… never to go back to your loved ones… I will grant you a swift death, this is the only thing I can promise you!"
He still wasn't comfortable with needless slaughter. There was no incentive from the system to get points either, the spatial rings would be taken anyway. If they were adamant in their beliefs and sect ties, then he would have to go along with his second option.
He was hoping to not stain his hands with more blood. If he wanted to change this world into something less dangerous then he would have to lead the change. He would need to show that mercy was also an option.
However, he still couldn't trust these people so the soul binding contracts would be needed. Luckily as a nascent soul expert, he could bind these people quickly if they just lowered their defenses.
"W-we can live?"
"You aren't going to kill us?"
The people from the Limitless Sword Society were baffled by the option they were getting. Normally the losing side would be eradicated without any questions being asked. It was normal to get rid of every single enemy cultivator from an opposing sect.
People in this world liked to be sure that nothing would come back to bite them. There were times when survivors from a defeated sect survived and after many years came back for revenge. Even one person that raised himself to the nascent soul level could cause a massive blow to any sect.
So it was seen as wise to snip the problem at the root and not let anyone develop. Even turning enemies into slaves was a strange offer. They still had their cultivation and could coax their offspring to take revenge later in their life. This was also why everyone here was surprised by the offer that looked too good to be true.
"How do we know that you aren't a lying senior?"
One of the people asked while Zhang Dong slowly descended towards the Argonaut.
"Do I have a reason to lie? You are at my mercy, you can try fleeing but you all know that there is no escape! Your elders left you as disposable pawns, now decide, will it be death or life!"
Zhang Dong pointed up to the sky and storm clouds started to form. They covered the whole sky in a dark blanket while churning with power. This was a wide-area attack that would discharge lightning bolts at everyone in the vicinity.
He wasn't joking around, they needed to decide as he couldn't force them to sign soul binding contracts. This had to be done with the approval of the person agreeing to it. If they declined he would have to eradicate them. This lightning storm would be strong enough to turn core formation cultivators and below into ash.
The cultivators from the Limitless Sword Society looked at the mass of clouds above them. They could feel the power radiating from them and were clearly scared. Finally one of the people stepped forward, his voice shaky.
"I… I want to live… I have a daughter and family… even if I can't return to the sect I can still aid them…"
It was a forty-something looking person and he looked ashamed. This was normal as surrendering to another sect was seen as something akin to treason. The other cultivators looked to the man and finally, they started speaking out.
In the end, more than half of them agreed to the soul binding contract but the rest refused. This sect wasn't perfect but it did have some people that were loyal.
"Traitors! We should fight to the end!"
"Why should we fight if the elders abandoned us? Don't be stupid, agree to the senior's preposition and live!"
Some of them started arguing with each other and some even switched over. Still, there were many that didn't falter and believed in their sects might. Even if they fell today their brothers and sisters would avenge them.
Zhang Dong on the other hand knew that it probably wouldn't be the case. The people on the top had a certain way of operating. After he defeated the leader the other nascent soul elders would back away out of fear.
Zhan Jie was chosen for that spot for a reason. The reserve elders were mostly below him in strength with maybe a few matching him and maybe one or two above him. They would certainly not risk their lives and fight the person that easily defeated one of their strongest fighters. Unless it was a battle for their lives they would now seek a diplomatic solution.
There was also the rumor of Zhang Dong's sect being a proxy sect of the Divine Fist Sect. Which just added to the problems of going against them.
"You have made your choice, I will uphold my part of the bargain."
Zhang Dong gave out a sigh while spreading his aura everywhere. The people that agreed lowered their guard and accepted this aura inside of their own being. He shackled their souls and bound them to his will.
These people that had made the contracts would be at his mercy. Even if they reached a higher realm than he did, their souls would shatter if he wished it to be. Zhang Dong could also place various restrictions that would activate automatically if he so desired.
The people that were soul-bound moved to the side. The others were still shaking in their boots and awaiting their demise. The nascent soul auras kept them in place while the storm churned.
While bathing in the lightning bolts the cultivators still hoped for their elders to return. Maybe if they lasted a bit longer their council would come to the rescue. Their bodies turned to dust and floated back to the earth below as it was over. The storm soon dispersed, a clear blue sky upon them as it signaled the end of this tragedy.
The leftovers cultivators were ordered to deliver a message to their sect before abandoning it. Zhang Dong would let them say their farewells to their families but that would be all. He wasn't sure what he should do with these people quite yet but he didn't need slaves for the time being.
He returned to the Argonaut and was welcomed by the old potato of a granny. She looked at him with an odd expression on her face but didn't comment on what had happened. He knew that she was probably against letting this group go as in the future it could cause an unforeseen problem.
"Return to your posts, we will be returning home at full speed, I will supply the ship with more power."
Zhang Dong noticed that the blond girl and her maids were looking at him with gaping mouths from the side. He gave them a little nod before departing towards the ship's engine room.
He went through the narrow corridors that could barely contain his larger frame and he finally arrived in the engine room.
This was a large room that had the power source for this ship. In the middle was a small item that looked like a decahedron just floating around. It was encased in thick crystal and connected to many tubes.
These tubes were slowly pulsating with light while connecting to the walls of this room. Through them, the power was guided into various devices of this ship.
This was a special kind of mineral that could store massive amounts of spiritual energy. It could also recharge itself to some capacity but was mostly infused before each flight.
Zhang Dong moved into a lotus position and started concentrating. This device had been drained by the Gungnir cannon by a large amount and needed some charging. He would infuse it with his lightning while the ship flew home.
"I need to hurry…"