Chapter 568: Back at the Base

When it came to the mission in the Endless Forest, Yang Qi and the Obliterators were in and out. Then they went into a session of cultivation for a few days, finally returning to their base in the imperial city via wormhole.

The base was a busy maze of a place, with soldiers constantly coming and going through wormholes.

Yang Qi and his five followers threaded their way through the base and were soon at the Special Reconnaissance Division’s headquarters.

As soon as they reported their mission a success, the soldier in charge looked at them oddly and said, “The general is in an important meeting right now and normally wouldn’t be able to see you. Fierce fighting has broken out with the forces of the Megaplexus Heaven, and the situation is grim. But he left standing orders that if you returned and said you had accomplished your mission, you should be brought in to explain the details. If you really accomplished the mission, you’ll be given a huge reward of military credit and the general will be informed immediately.”

Savage Dragon could already sense that something unusual was going on. Stepping forward, he angrily said, “Are you saying the general doesn’t believe that we could succeed?”

“To some extent, yes,” the officer replied. “You see, the general got new intelligence reports after you left that said the demon altar in the Endless Forest was guarded by a much stronger force than we originally thought. He sent messages for you to fall back, but you had disappeared. Now here you are, saying you accomplished the mission, therefore the general wants all the details. This isn’t the place, though. Please, come inside.”

He gestured for them to follow him.

“Captain?” Savage Dragon said, looking at Yang Qi.

Yang Qi chuckled. “If that's how they want to do it, fine. We did something quite momentous, so it’s only natural that they would be suspicious. Let’s go in and explain everything.”

With that, he led the way inside.

‘Did he just call him captain?’ the officer thought, looking even more shocked than before. ‘The five Obliterators are fiendish killers who never accept anyone new into their ranks. Why are they calling this newbie captain?’

The officer led Yang Qi and the Obliterators into the headquarters, to a room filled with soldiers. At the end of the room, a table had been set up, which was populated by a host of top experts. General Yuan Kuohai was there, and from the look of it he had just finished discussing some important matter.

Instantly, all eyes in the room swiveled to lock on to Yang Qi and his team. Some people looked surprised, others smiled coldly, and more than a few looks of disdain could be seen. From the look of it, some of them were expecting a show to play out.

Yang Qi gave a meaningful look to Savage Dragon, who stepped forward and said, “General, we accomplished the mission in the Endless Forest. We destroyed the demon altar and those who were guarding it, and are back to report in.”

“What? You six really destroyed the demon altar in the Endless Forest?” Yuan Kuohai replied, clearly suspicious.

Savage Dragon looked at Yang Qi, and seeing how calm and collected he was, raised his voice and said, “Yes. We wiped it out of existence. If you don’t believe us, General, you can go check the location yourself. If anything we've reported is untrue, we’d be happy to go to trial by court-martial.”

At this point, one of the other officers sitting at the table snorted coldly and said, “You six are obviously brazen liars! We got new information stating that a mighty individual from the Hanging Heaven sent an expression of will into the Endless Forest to drive the demonlings mad and use them as a weapon against us. Even worse, they sent a top expert named General Goldrhino there, a demon-immortal who is the incarnation of a powerful rhinoceros. Apparently, he stole a boundless fist technique from the Dragonfolk and is immensely strong. He’s an Origin-Demolisher, just on the verge of achieving a breakthrough to become an immortal marquis. With someone in charge of their forces who’s just as strong as our General Yuan Kuohai, there’s no way that you six weaklings, none of whom are even a third stage Thought-Demolisher, could possibly accomplish that mission. And yet you dare to come back and claim to have done just that?”

“That’s right,” another of the officers said. “I just had my people check, and it's true that the demon altar exploded, leaving behind a massive crater in the Endless Forest. Clearly, the altar malfunctioned and detonated on its own, and you lot are trying to take credit after the fact.”

Leaning over to Yang Qi, Savage Dragon quietly said, “Captain, those two are the captains of the Tuskers and the Rampagers. They’re longstanding rivals of we Obliterators, and always do everything they can to try to take us down a notch.”

Yang Qi immediately understood the situation.

“We already know everything that happened in the Endless Forest,” someone else in the room said. He was a third stage Thought-Demolisher, an immortal officer, and his words were an obvious accusation. “These shameless braggarts look down on military law and are clearly useless. If we don't execute them now, we’re doing a disservice to the army as a whole. Set an example with them immediately!”

“That’s right. Either execute them or lock them up.”

“Submitting false reports is a big crime. If we don't punish them, how can we maintain discipline?”

Unexpectedly, everyone was calling for Yang Qi and the Obliterators to be severely punished.

At a certain point, Yuan Kuohai snorted coldly and said, “Quiet down, everyone. First, let’s see what the Obliterators have to say for themselves.” Looking at them, he continued, “If the six of you failed the mission, the worst that will happen is you’ll be sent to lockup for a few days. I understand that it was a particularly difficult mission. But fabricating a report is a different matter altogether. Taking credit for killing enemies you didn’t kill is a serious crime. If we don't punish you for something like that, wouldn’t it be just asking for big trouble down the line? Now talk! Admit your crimes! If you don’t, we’ll execute you and deny you a proper burial.”

“Calm down,” Yang Qi said, looking around at all the malicious gazes locked on to him. “General, what makes you so certain we didn’t accomplish the mission?”

“Are you seriously asking that question?” said the captain of the Tuskers. “Considering the level of General Goldrhino’s cultivation base, not even all of you working together could defeat him. In fact, even if you were ten times stronger than you are, you would still be killed. And you want us to believe you finished the mission by—”

Thump!

Before he could finish speaking, a corpse plopped onto the ground, clad in golden garments. It was none other than General Goldrhino.

Jaws dropped in the room as everyone looked at the corpse in utter shock. “Is that General Goldrhino? That’s really his corpse?”

Yuan Kuohai shot to his feet, walked forward, and examined the corpse more closely. After confirming it was really General Goldrhino, he turned to look at Yang Qi, his eyes flickering with amazement.

“What,” Yang Qi said. “You think its fake or something?” Although he had fully refined General Goldrhino, it was a simple thing to restore him to his previous condition. One thought to destroy all things. One thought to create all things. That was what the gods were capable of. After all, the first stance of the Hand of the One God was called Creation.

“How do we know you didn’t just find the corpse and take it?” said the captain of the Tuskers. “According to my information, that almighty entity from the Hanging Heaven sent a god item to the forces in the Endless Forest. If you have that, maybe we could believe that you were the ones who destroyed the altar.”

“Oh really?” Yang Qi waved his hand, and a burst of deathless godliness spread out as a flag appeared, causing pressure to weigh down on the entire base.

“The Protomammoth Flag! A god item!” someone shouted, and then the entire room devolved into an uproar.

After the commotion died down, Yang Qi said, “What do you say? We accomplished the mission, General. Now, how are you going to reward us? How much military credit do we get?”

“Hold on a second!” said the captain of the Rampagers.

“What,” Yuan Kuohai said. “You have something else to say?” 

“It’s an incredible thing that the Obliterators finished that mission. But they should have handed over the corpse and that god item, as well as any other magical treasures you acquired. Selfishly keeping them for themselves is a big crime of its own. They should hand them over immediately!” Obviously, the captain of the Rampagers wanted to get his hands on the Protomammoth Flag and wouldn't stand for it being kept by the Obliterators.

“I agree on this point,” said Yuan Kuohai. Despite being an important general, not even he had a god item. To him, even low-level god items were amazing things. At most, he could get sovereign-grade immortal items, therefore, the chance to get a god item was something he wouldn’t pass up.

“Hand over the god item,” he continued. “It will count as a big service if you do. Remember, you Obliterators are all members of the army. Understand?”

Smiling faintly, Yang Qi said “Unfortunately….”

“Unfortunately what?” Yuan Kuohai asked.

“Unfortunately, I already assimilated it,” Yang Qi said coolly. “So I can’t hand it in. In any case, did you really think I would just give you a god item? General, did you suffer brain damage recently? How could you not understand how things like this work? Give you a god item? Although, I guess it makes sense. Myopic people like you probably don't understand how much god items are worth.”

“W-what? What did you just say?” Yuan Kuohai said, visibly astonished. “D-did… did you just say I have brain damage? Y-you… how dare you! This is unforgivable!”

“Unforgivable! Unforgivable!” shouted the captains of the Tuskers and the Rampagers.

Stalking back to his place at the table, Yuan Kuohai pointed at Yang Qi and the Obliterators and said, “You people have no face at all. Perhaps you accomplished your mission, but then you went on to be disorderly, and even cursed at an officer. Not even execution can wipe out crimes like that. Men. Arrest them!”

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