One could see an uncountable expanse of clouds, so numerous that it seems like the crests of white waves spreading out into the horizon as far as the eyes could possibly see.
If one were to look closely, one could see two figures standing on the clouds facing each other. One cloth in a splendid white with trims of blue, facing another cloth in blue with gold trimmings.
In their hands, one held a saber while the other was holding a sword. These weapons were not ordinary and had magnificent auras. Auras that easily froze and even killed lesser beings without as much as a blink of an eye.
Above them a vortex was already forming, the energies from this two pugilists had created havoc in the atmosphere, too terrible and defying for mere mortals to comprehend.
A million leagues and beyond, circumnavigating the entire world, their Qi was so tremendous the ground below shook.
This world had since lost its inhabitants centuries past, nothing lived here, not even insects or vegetation, and all that was left were empty dried out husks.
Over tens of millenniums, it was the survival of the strongest and only these two beings left were the epitome of their own empire. It had been millenniums in the making for them to finally face each other. The world could no longer bear with even each step they made. Hence the time has come to see which could reign as the final victor in this world.
“Brother Long” The man in splendid white with blue trimmings finally spoke to the other, “You are the victor, I could never imagine our levels to be vastly different even though you are my junior by more than a millennium”
With this said the man in splendid white collapse on his knees, there was no visible injuries nor even blood.
“Brother Hu” The blue cloth man called Long replied, “It is unfortunate that our society has dictated this ending, victory is but hollow in this dead world”
“Brother Long, it is unfortunate that I will not even see the other plane where our ancestors have gone, it would have been a pleasure to enter the halls of Asura. However my soul is no longer whole, there is no means for me to enter the next plane”
Long looked at Hu with a questioning look, even as Hu replied, “Your prowess is overwhelming, given no choice my soul force was used to counter it, now there is insufficient soul energy left, recovery is impossible in the Qi-less world” Hu replied.
Long did not speak further, fully understanding the implications, if Long himself had suffered sufficient damaged to his soul, in the current shape of this world there was no means to recover and he will not be able to transit over to the other plane.
In the aftermath of every duel, the lines between victor and loser were clearly defined. To live and die by the way of the pugilist is a heroic endeavor. Therefore Long will not insult Hu by using his Qi to send him off.
A few moments later, Hu’s body had already started to fade, his body was dimming and soon it became translucent and flickered a few times before vanishing.
Long sighed regrettably and turned around. With just a thought, he arrive at a blink in his Clan Hall. There he walked to his garden at the plateau overlooking the wide expanse of the Dragon Kingdom. On top of his floating palace he look with sorrowful eyes at the land which bore no semblance to its former glory.
To the east the edges of a hyper caldera could be seen, lined with volcanoes that constantly spew forth lava and magma in an endless stream. Geysers sprouted and thermal springs boiled endlessly as the aquifer layer surprisingly has not dried up, but made poisonous by the sulfur and other toxic gases in it.
To the west Tsunamis over a few hundred feet raced over the ocean and crash ceaselessly onto the land, as a result of constant earthquakes that ruptured and split the ocean bed. These Tsunamis gouge out the ocean floor and brought reefs and corals the size of mountains onto the shoreline.
To the north a Hyper Hurricane system constantly swept the earth bringing lightning and thunder the made a spectacle of light and sound. The endless rains flooded the once fertile plains of this region forming raging rivers. The unstable pressure system cause massive tornadoes a few leagues wide that plunge through the water logged land, digging up debris and leaving a path of destruction behind, coupled with the unbelievable wind speeds of the Hurricane, the tornadoes raced throughout like a bat out of hell.
To the south laid the burnt out land of ashes. The environment was grey everywhere, not even a piece of charred remains of the once magnificent forest could be found. Everything that could be burned was burnt, river streams were dried and the surface long since cracked becoming sandstone, legacy of the massive drought which last for centuries absorbing all the moisture and bringing raging temperatures which could incinerate any living being.
This planet is dying, and has been so since the early footings of beings with the ability to absorb Qi. With each new generation the surrounding Qi has been absorb endlessly.
What once was the world’s ability to auto-replenish its Qi from the soil to the vegetation to the microorganisms that lived in the surroundings became totally destroyed, as the power of the Qi absorbing beings became immense, the land could not even recuperate itself. The continuous absorption created patches of dead zone, and with each generation, duels to claim new living land increased.
Genocides were widespread across the stars where clans fought to gain new Qi zones, until the entirety of the world and its colonies had not a single source of Qi left. In its dying breathe, only two were left, the final legacy of two clans, the Tiger and Dragon clan. All former glory gone in ages past, even now only one reigned supreme, but it was a tasteless victory.
Long entered the clan seclusion zone, and started to meditate. Soon in no less than two centuries this world and its colonies will end. Its ending will create a chain of events and lead to a hyper-nova in the galaxy. This was not a small world, it was huge in comparison to its colonies which only span 5,000-10,000 leagues, and this world is 1 million leagues in circumference. Its sun was only 10 times its size.
It was the capital of the known system, which encompasses a network of other colonies within various solar systems that has long since been exhausted of Qi.
With the collapse of this world, the impact in its system will gouge out a substantial portion of its own sun and create a chain event leading to an enormous after effect that will destroy a massive part of the galaxy it was in.
Long needed time in seclusion to gain a new form of awareness to avoid perishing with the world. Even with unparalleled abilities, this was the only way to ensure his soul survived. Suicide was no guarantee that the soul will survive, as it always leaves irreparable damage, damage that cannot be repaired in this Qi-less world.
Hence for no less than a millennium Long had never went overboard in all his duels, and allowed his opponents a fair passage to the afterlife by not destroying their souls, this allowed for recovery before moving on. Hu’s death was extremely regrettable as even if his soul was not excessively damaged, there was simply insufficient Qi.
If it was 10 centuries earlier, it could have been avoided as there were still lingering trails of Qi around.
Now Long himself needed to enter seclusion and use his own Qi to move his soul into the afterlife. No doubt he had a vast supply of his own Qi, he was unsure if it was of sufficient quantity to guarantee success.
But now he reigned supreme over a dead empire that stretched across the stars, the Supreme Law of this world was a supernatural one, and it granted the last being standing on the apex of power to become a soul-deity.
By command of the Creator, all souls entered the afterlife into another plane of existence and none shall return. A soul-deity was granted an exception, it was bestowed by the Creator the chance to be reborn again.
Not many cared for it in the beginning, with life spans that exceeded thousands of years. Only when they discovered the Qi was not replenishing, the bloodshed and wars begun to attain soul-deity.
Now with this finally in hand, Long entered seclusion.