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Book 6, Chapter 70 - I Heard You Were Strong

 The Avatar Selene was occupied with two important things. First was her attempts to regain stability in the realm. Second, she was leading the Seraphs in repairing the Great Wall.

The Boundary Portal had failed to open because Skycloud's energy field was depleted. Only twenty days remained before the next attempt. Selene had to do everything in her power to fix the issue before that time.

However twenty days simply wasn't enough time to repair the entire wall. Even if she threw all her resources at the problem, it was impossible. Skycloud's Great Wall traversed the whole border of the realm and was beyond mortal means to fix. But she didn't have to repair the entire thing!

The boundaries of Skycloud didn't come from the wall. Rather, it was formed by four fortresses at the four corners of the compass; North, South, East and West. These fortresses were focal points, generating huge amounts of power that when connected formed the realm's enchantments. When whole, it generated the energy field everyone relied upon.

When Adder detonated the nuclear bomb, he obliterated one of those integral fortresses. As a result of the blow-back, the remaining focal points lost control of the energies and were also destroyed. In the end it led to total collapse.

While Arcturus was alive, he'd delegated constant resources to repairing the connection. By the time he was slain the four focal points had been repaired. The next step was to link them back together by some means. When that happened, Skycloud's enchantment would be restored.

Once again entry into the realm would be nearly impossible for outsiders. Breaking through would be that much harder. Most importantly, the Boundary Portal could be reopened and troops from the four other Elysian realms would pour through.

Cloudhawk had to take action. To this end he split his focus down two routes. He would bring a small crew with him back to Skycloud and focus on sabotaging the four focal points. Meanwhile, Phain and Janus would invade Elysian cities. With Phain's reputation, it would be much easier for him to spread malcontent and convince both soldiers and citizens to join their cause.

Of course, Cloudhawk's aim wasn't just increasing military strength and population. He was staging the largest evacuation in Elysian history. If Skycloud was a giant, It didn't matter how large or powerful it was - with the right cut he could bleed it dry.

At this time he was closing in on one of the focal fortresses with his team. Dawn, in full battle garb, was by his side. She couldn't keep her grumbles to herself. "Should we send out feelers to see how they react? After all, we only need to take out one to succeed."

Cloudhawk shook his head. "No need. She knows we'd target these fortresses eventually so I'm sure they're all well defended. That's why we're attacking all four at the same time, spreading the battle line over thousands of kilometers. Like you said, we only need to take out one."

Dawn had to admire Cloudhawk, the cunning fox!

The focal fortresses were located at the four corners of the realm. Cloudhawk and his group was responsible for one. The Khan of Evernight and troops from Nox were dispatched to another. Wolfblade was targeting the remaining two, coming south from Woodland Vale with the best equipment they could muster.

As for Selene and her sight? She was formidable all on her own.

Cloudhawk had taken that into consideration. That's why he'd brought Dawn along with five hundred Talon agents and five thousand of their best regulars. As they crept closer to the western fortress, attacks had likely already started at the other three. He couldn't delay.

"That has to be the focal fortress there."

But Dawn felt something was amiss. The morning sky was clear and blue, so the column of light piercing into the sky ahead was especially conspicuous. It was definitely the focal point, but the realm was supposed to be out of energy. So where was this light coming from?

Cloudhawk stopped hiding. There was no point in it any longer. So he teleported directly above the fortress, seven or eight thousand meters in the air. It was close enough that he could deliver a precise strike. Immediately he began to release a torrent of power that caused the heavens to ripple. Two enormous black holes swirled into existence on either side of him, bulging dangerously.

Boom! Boom!

Two massive meteors passed through, immediately bursting into flame as they came into contact with the atmosphere. At first they appeared to be moving slowly but picked up speed as they tumbled toward the fortress.

Freed from the shackles of space, the meteor screamed across the sky. With its size and speed, smashing into the fortress would be no less devastating than a nuclear blast. The place could be full of demonhunters with their defensive relics and it would make no difference.

But then something unexpected happened. Just as the meteors were about to strike a figure appeared above them. Brandishing a pair of jeweled daggers, the stranger thrust one each into the falling rocks. In a flash, two more daggers appeared and were thrown into the trunk of a distant tree. What followed took Cloudhawk entirely by surprise.

The meteors with those daggers inserted abruptly stopped. The air around them warped as though gravity had been shut off. And then they vanished.

BOOM! BOOM!

Just as the meteors disappeared from over the fortress, two huge rocky mountains appeared in the earth.

Cloudhawk recognized what had happened right away. This stranger, like him, could manipulate space. His daggers marked specific locations, taking whatever items and energy were in that area and transferring them elsewhere.

Certainly this power could also teleport people.

Thoughts raced through Cloudhawk's mind. The other focal fortresses were probably marked by this demonhunter. So long as they lived the four fortresses could support one another. With Selene's Eyes of Time and this spatial power, the fortresses were practically unbreakable!

Selene appeared before him.

She sat astride Anima, with the spatial master Bruno Argyris in tow. Joining them was a fiery looking woman with hair to her waist - Phoenix Ignis, the warrior from Dragenmere. She shouted at Cloudhawk from a distance.

"You're the one called Cloudhawk?"

"Yup."

"I heard you were strong. Let's test that."

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