Ever since the war became prolonged, the Loen soldiers had seen countless unnatural phenomena. It happened so many that they were somewhat numb to it. However, the scene of the dismembered corpses crawling up remained a shocking scene. It left them horrified and confused. They felt as though they were unable to survive the impending disaster, and would eventually become zombies.
Of course, there was a reason why they were able to maintain their morale after seeing such unnatural phenomena.
Just as they were feeling extreme fear, a series of chants sounded from behind them.
"Lacking clothes and food, they have no shelter in the cold.
"The Evernight did not forsake them, but bestowed them with love."
The holy and sympathetic prayer reverberated across the entire defense line, causing the fear in every soldier to quickly dissipate, their bodies and minds turning tranquil.
Then, a number of the soldiers followed orders and moved out cannons covered in silver patterns. They adjusted the muzzles and aimed at the dismembered corpses that were rushing at them.
Boom! Boom! Boom!
Sparks flew as shells landed in different spots on the battlefield, exploding and emitting a thick darkness.
The dismembered corpses collapsed, the strength within them vanishing; otherwise, they were directly destroyed, returning to their eternal slumber.
The mysterious black-robed man behind the Resistance army raised his arms upon seeing this, as though he was hugging the crimson moon.
At that moment, his body suddenly turned incorporeal, his body dyed a faint red as he transformed into a hazy ray of moonlight.
The moonlight shattered instantly, turning into red scales before dissipating in place.
This was a Beyonder power that a Sequence 5 Scarlet Scholar of the Apothecary pathway possessed. To a Sequence 4 Shaman King, it was almost instinctive.
And at the spot where the Shaman King had been, a figure quickly outlined itself.
It was a huge cloth doll. "It" had blonde hair and bright red eyes, and wore a long black gothic dress with countless mysterious patterns engraved on it. Swirling around it was sinister vines. Its skin had a luster that no human should possess.
"She" had used the Staff of the Stars to summon "Herself" back when she was in perfect condition.
Of course, the Staff of the Stars that was lent to Miss Messenger was the real one. Klein had brought it back to the real world from above the gray fog ahead of time.
If that wasn't the case, it would be equivalent to Klein's historical projection summoning a Staff of the Stars projection; then, the projection of the Staff of the Stars would summon Reinette Tinekerr in her peak state. The whole burden would be placed on Fors, causing her spirituality to be quickly drained.
A solution to this problem was to temporarily lend the actual Staff of the Stars to Reinette Tinekerr. The draining of spirituality would be borne by this Ancient Bane.
At the same time, Reinette Tinekerr was probably one of the existences that were the least afraid of the negative effects of the staff.
As a key representative of the temperance faction, and as a Puppet and a "cloth doll," "She" could stop unwanted scenes from surfacing in "Her" mind. And after changing into a concealed state, the Staff of the Stars could hardly affect "Her" Historical Void projection.
The peak state Reinette Tinekerr had attempted to sneak closer to directly possess the Rose School of Thought's Shaman King and instantly end the battle. However, the other party had discovered the danger ahead of time. Using the moonlight's illumination, he was one step ahead of the Wraith's possession.
Amidst the crimson glow that enveloped the ground, red scales rapidly reformed into the black-robed, hooded Rose School of Thought Shaman King. His eyes were closed eyes tightly, not daring to look at the Ancient Bane opposite him.
At the same time, on the other side of the battlefield, a figure rapidly appeared. It was none other than Gehrman Sparrow, who was wearing a black trench coat and a half top hat. He had a transparent glove on his left hand as he raised his right hand and snapped his fingers.
Scarlet flames rose up from various parts of the battlefield, as if they were announcing the beginning of a grand performance.
Just as the Shaman King finished reforming, he reached out his left hand and tore apart the clothes on his chest. At that moment, Reinette Tinekerr's bright red eyes reflected his figure.
If things went as expected, the Rose School of Thought Shaman King would've transformed into a rabbit or a goat in the next second. He would "lose" most of his characteristics and Beyonder powers, but his body only emitted a faint glow without any change.
His exposed chest revealed a long, thin brown puppet which was embedded there.
The puppet seemed to grow out of the Shaman King's body, its body connected to his internal organs. Its eyes and mouth were like crescents. The surface of its body was grown with dried flowers and withered grass, giving off an indescribable bizarreness in the moonlight.
Suddenly, the puppet was dyed red as though it was soaked in blood.
It immediately turned into a pool of mud that surged into the organs of the Shaman King.
Amidst the mud, an arm stretched out.
Its surface was flowing with a black sticky liquid that kept protruding out with strange objects. Some were skulls, some had barbed tongues, while others had three-dimensional eyes.
This Rose School of Thought's leader, an existence at Sequence 1, had crossed the vast distance and descended with the help of prior arrangements!
That evil aura instantly caused the surrounding members of the Rose School of Thought and supporting members to either die, mutate, or wildly attack their comrades. Apart from the Shaman King, no one was spared.
West Balam, in a port city.
Shaman King Klarman, who wielded the highest authority here, stood at the top floor of a cathedral that once belonged to the Church of Evernight as he looked down at the sparsely-lit city.
In a house not far away, Emlyn White glanced at the doll-like Sharron and took out a bronze box with many ruby gems embedded in it.
Inside the box was an eyeball-shaped glass sphere. It was a Sealed Artifact which Emlyn had requested from the Sanguine, known as the Vision of White—an artifact of the Sun domain.
It was very effective at dealing with the Mutant pathway's demigods and Shaman Kings. It could even be considered able to restrain them in certain aspects.
Of course, it wouldn't feel any sense of pity and kindness just because Emlyn and Sharron were Beyonders on its side.
Upon seeing Sharron nod slightly to indicate that there were no problems, Emlyn's body phased away as the moonlight that shone into the room, and he disintegrated into a series of colorful red scales.
At the apex of the nearby cathedral, Klarman was pacing back and forth with his puffy, black-and-white hair. He sneered at the city's Nighthawks and Mandated Punishers for moving the Loen citizens and all the Sealed Artifacts away ahead of time.
If the group consisted only of Beyonders, it wouldn't be impossible to escape, but with so many ordinary people, how can you effectively move without being noticed? There's no need for me to send people to track you. Simply locking down the surrounding docks and food supplies is enough to break you down without my interference…
As he muttered silently to himself, this Shaman King, who had been active in the Southern Continent since the early Fifth Epoch and was even suspected to be dead, cast his gaze out the window and stared at the crimson moon high in the sky.
Previously, the abnormal phenomenon of the "crimson moon turning white" made Klarman feel the anger of the Primordial Moon. He had always felt uneasy and disturbed.
He had become a Primordial Moon believer over time while researching natural interactions, secret deeds, and other mysterious knowledge.
Normally, it was relatively easy for a Shaman King to live a thousand years, but later on, his physical condition waned—an irreversible form of aging and the decay of his Spirit Body. Therefore, 1,200 years was commonly the natural limit of Shaman Kings and Sanguine Earls. To continue living, one could only rely on various methods to survive. For example, sealing oneself and sleeping in a coffin deep within a castle.
Klarman was nearly 1400 years old and still brimming with energy. He didn't need to limit his movements, because he had received the Primordial Moon's blessings.
This was also the reason why he had disappeared for so many years.
Later on, he received a revelation from the Primordial Moon and joined the Rose School of Thought.
In this aspect, Klarman always had his suspicions. Sometimes, he believed that the Mother Tree of Desire and the Primordial Moon were one entity. They were different sides of the same great existence. Yet, there were other times when he felt that the Mother Tree of Desire and the Primordial Moon were not only different, but there was also a deep conflict between them.
This resulted in the Primordial Moon believers not getting enough attention when they later joined the Rose School of Thought. Apart from receiving some bestowments in the form of items, they were placed in noncritical positions.
Just as Klarman was focused on sensing the crimson moon in an attempt to gain a revelation, the crimson moonlight that fell onto the cathedral's bell tower had pure red scales of light appear as they gathered together. It then manifested into Emlyn White who wore a tuxedo and a bow tie.
Behind this Sanguine, a thick black gas emanated, forming a pair of illusory bat wings.
Emlyn had already consumed the corresponding potion to remove his scent and spirituality fluctuations, allowing him to approach his target in secret.
Of course, he was up against a demigod, a Sequence 4 demigod of the same pathway. Even if he was fully prepared, he didn't dare get too close, or else he would easily be discovered.
Looking at the window where Shaman King Klarman was, he examined the projection on the glass for a second. Emlyn White opened the bronze box with the rubies embedded in it, and he used his black velvet-gloved left hand to pick up the Vision of White.
His expression twisted as he experienced the pain that came from being exposed to the blazing sun.
Suppressing the pain, Emlyn pushed the eyeball-shaped glass sphere to his right eye.
All the buildings in front of him had suddenly disappeared from his vision, leaving only shadows of cold, crimson, or fallen evil.
Among them, there was a figure that was like a huge black whirlpool that was crazily devouring the light around it, causing his body to become distorted.
This was Emlyn's target, the ancient Shaman King, Klarman.
A ray of light immediately lit up, condensing into a scorching, blinding light. It shot out from the Vision of White and went straight for the figure behind the glass window.
 Adapted from Job 24:8, Old Testament.
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