Chapter 185: Lawful Punishment
At the forefront of the parade walking in, there were twenty cultivators, each armored from head to toe in a crystal suit. They were at the very least in the Building Foundation Stage, and after the boost from the crystal suit, they gave off the impression of twenty torches burning through the sky that were absorbing powerful spiritual energy waves all the time.
The spiritual roots of low-level cultivators like Li Yao felt an absolute pressure as their pores sealed up in the blink of an eye, not daring to release even a single spirit thread.
And the intense killing intent emanating from them was not intentional at all, but rather due to fighting a bloody battle repeatedly in the dark and dreary underground with the demon beasts. Their spirit was naturally shrouded in a layer of fiendish aura.
It was as if they had gone through hundreds of battles, killing everything in their wake, causing the fiendish aura to materialize. When it was used on the battlefield to kill, it was a hundred times sharper than the spiritual energy itself.
Regardless of the fact that their crystal suits were incomplete, ladened with blood stains, or the fact that a majority of the crystal suits' joints and exquisite glyphs were corroded...
Li Yao's eyes when looking at them were filled with envy and jealousy. He wanted to run over to them, snatch a suit, and don it.
The twenty crystal suit cultivators walked in an ostentatious and awe-inspiring manner. Following them were ten trucks that sent demonic energy soaring to the sky and had thick liquid dripping from every opening. They were filled with demon beasts' corpses.
This was the just first batch. There were still a large number of demon beasts' corpses remaining underground which had to be dealt with as soon as possible. Otherwise, an epidemic would soon follow, which was nothing to joke about.
The convoys of trucks transporting the demon beasts' corpses were followed by crystal tanks that were pulling large iron cages one after another. Each iron cage had hundreds of array glyphs carved upon them, countless crystals inlaid on their bases, and crackling lightning arcs running between the railings.
Imprisoned inside the cages were powerful demon beasts who were restless upon finding themselves being displayed to the human onlookers. They were rampaging more violently than the lightning itself, desperately jumping up and down, struggling with all they had.
However, every time they touched the cages, they would be stuck by a bolt of lightning, causing them to grimace in pain while their scales stood erect. The air was filled with a faint stench.
"These are all Demon Generals. This time, we have captured a total of nineteen Demon Generals; it was truly difficult!"
Zhao Tianchong said while laughing.
Li Yao looked fixedly and noticed that the Demon Generals in the cages were completely different from the low-level demon beasts such as Demon Soldiers. Most of them appeared to be similar to humans.
Especially their eyes; in them, one could clearly find panic, anger, hatred, and a sharp killing intent.
Even though some of these particularly aggressive Demon Generals were repeatedly struck by lightning, so much that their bodies were laden with deep wounds where even the bones were visible, they did not care and cast a deadly glare upon the cultivators and soldiers nearby.
As though they would tear the humans into pieces just with that brutal gaze.
"Even such aggressive Demon Generals are captured. It's quite difficult to imagine how intense the underground battle was!"
Li Yao clucked his tongue in marvel, he could not help but feel a bit ashamed.
Just a while ago, when he got to see the posts about him, he was getting all proud and mighty; believing himself to be quite formidable for being able to kill a grievously injured Demon General.
Now, he only got to realize how big of a gap was actually there between him and a true expert.
If he had entered the underground battlefield, perhaps he would not have been able to hold on for one short hour before getting crushed into nothing but slag.
"I am still not strong enough!"
"At present, I only have just an itsy-bitsy bit of reputation in the Grand Desolate War Institution. Everyone is only optimistic about by potential, nothing more, nothing less!"
"In this vast cultivation world, I am just an insignificant figure, who doesn’t even have the qualifications to participate in the underground battle!"
"I have to become stronger as soon as possible! At the very least, I have to enter the Building Foundation Stage even earlier than Ding Lingdang and Senior Brother Peng. Only then would I have the qualifications to participate in the undoubted battles in the world of cultivation!"
Li Yao silently pondered. Suddenly, Lu Tieshan nudged him a bit:
"Demon King is here!"
Li Yao turned excited as he stood on his tiptoes and stretched his neck to gaze far away.
Even before he could see the Demon King, his line of sight was taken away by an ugly-looking, long-bulbous-nosed man who in some ways resembled a pekinese.
This person wasn't wearing a crystal suit, he was just draped in a loose linen robe, while his hands were hidden inside wide sleeves.
He was all secretive and low-key; very difficult for anyone to find his true colors. Nevertheless, the air around him was stronger than the cultivators who had donned crystal suits.
In particular, his long sleeves seemed as though they were hiding a terrifying blade. Even though Li Yao was hundreds of meters away from him, he could still feel the dangerous aura emitted by that blade.
"Is it a saber?"
From the vague outline mapped on the sleeve, this person was apparently carrying a saber-type magical equipment.
At present, Li Yao was researching sabers, and thus, his gaze focused involuntarily upon that man's sleeve as it was attracted by that peerless saber hidden inside.
Having stared at that man's sleeve for three seconds, Li Yao suddenly felt his scalp tingle, as if an invisible saber was launched from within that man's sleeve towards him, sweeping away everything in its path before it struck dead right upon his throat!
Li Yao could not help but scream as he tottered and retreated two steps back; almost falling off the crystal tank.
The sudden burst of pain he felt coming from his throat was so real that goosebumps had exploded all over his body as his hands covered his throat, while cold sweat oozed out from his forehead. He felt as though he had died once!
Zhao Tianchong and Lu Tieshan took a glance at him with a bewildered look in their eyes. They could not understand why Li Yao suddenly went limp.
Hundreds of meters away, the bulbous-nosed man felt the oddity of Li Yao as he calmly glanced at him before his eyes flickered with a sliver of surprise.
"That man is Long Wenhui, an illustrious demon beast hunter of wasteland and the vice president of Hundred Saber Alliance. He is in the Core Formation Stage and was one of the peak battle forces in the battle of Verdant Tarn City. He is also the one who captured the Demon King!"
Zhao Tianchong introduced.
"So he was a Core Formation Stage powerhouse, no wonder his strength was so tyrannical. I just spied on him a bit, but it felt like I had been cut by a blade. I was simply unable to block!"
Li Yao still had a lingering fear. If he had known that he was a Core Formation Stage expert, how could he have dared to peep at his blade?
Taking a deep breath, Li Yao stabilized his mind before he narrowed his eyes as he tried to peer behind Long Wenhui.
Behind Long Wenhui was two crystal tanks side by side that were dragging an enormous transparent cage. All the railings had been forged using crystals which were not only engraved with dense glyphs on the surface, but had numerous micro-array glyphs which were floating within the crystal. They glowed with ever-changing brilliance.
Within the cage stood an over two-meter tall humanoid monster with a body covered in light blue scales. It had a long and narrow tail, clear and distinguishable facial features which seemed like a distorted human face, and two horns on either side of its head that were pointed towards the sky. The horn on the left side was broken and a light golden liquid was flowing out.
The Demon King's palms and feet had been pierced with long crystal nails which were affixed to crystal chains, connecting his limbs to the four corners of the cage. His scapulas had two light purple cones deeply embedded which were releasing lightning with no end.
Even Li Yao, who was a hundred meters away, could hear crackling sounds coming from inside the Demon King’s body.
However, there wasn't even a sliver of change in the expression on the Demon King's face. Only the deepest part of his eyes occasionally flickered with an extremely brutal aura as he gradually swept his gaze over the audience, giving the crowd the impression that he was looking at a group of insignificant ants.
Suddenly, the Demon King’s glance skimmed over Li Yao.
Powerful! Terrifying! Tyrannical! Brutal!
These words suddenly popped out from the depths of his brain one after another.
Regardless of him being heavily shackled to the cage, a tyrannical aura unscrupulously emanated from the Demon King that made Li Yao highly tense. An urge to fight a battle to the death rose up in him.
One could only imagine, if the Demon King hadn't been shackled and became crazy, how horrible would it be?
The mini-crystal processors of Li Yao and the other two simultaneously rang. Having taken a glance, the three simultaneously revealed an ecstatic look.
"The three of us have been selected as representatives of the Grand Desolate War Institution!"
"This peerless Demon King is going to be beheaded by us!"
The outskirts of Verdant Tarn City was a temporary safe zone, which was filled with a sea of tents.
All the rescued citizens were safely reallocated here, where they were waiting for the end of the beast tide before they could return to their homes.
It was also one of the reasons why the army would rather initiate bloody battles street by street and was unable to use heavy firepower.
The wasteland was sparsely populated and poor in transportation modes. There was an extreme shortage of a variety of building materials, making it rather difficult to build a large city that could harbor a couple hundred thousand people.
If a city that size was leveled to the ground with heavy firepower, not only would it be impossible to safely reallocate so many citizens, the reconstruction would also be a huge, long, drawn-out project that would cost an astronomical figure.
In the meantime, mankind would have lost a permanent base and the subsequent consequences would be immeasurable.
Therefore, unless it was a last resort, the federation army would not personally destroy a city that was built after over a hundred years of painstaking effort. This way, not only could humankind could preserve their strength a bit, it would also be rather convenient to reconstruct homes.
At this moment, the entire temporary safe zone was bursting with joy upon learning of the great victory.
From the child who had just started babbling to elderly folk with long beards, everyone was shouting and jumping for joy, shouting the slogan, “Long live the cultivators and the federation army!”
Especially when the convoy of captured demon clan experts gradually passed through the temporary safe zone, the atmosphere was hot to the extreme; the masses broke into loud cheers and their hands were almost swollen from clapping.
Many had tragically lost their relatives during the beast tide outbreak, so their hatred for the demon clan ran deep. The masses charged toward the convoy without a care in the world, only to be blocked by soldiers.
"Don't be anxious, you will have the time to take your revenge!"
Next to the temporary safe zone, a simple war tribunal that could accommodate 100,000 people was built within a few days with the help of a few cultivation sects.
In just a short amount of time, it was jampacked. The citizens who had lost their relatives in the beast tide outbreak were arranged in the VIP seats, while the seats of the rest of the people were decided through lotteries. Those who could not get seats gathered outside the war tribunal, where they could watch the proceedings live through a huge hologram in the sky.
Today, a Demon King and nineteen Demon Generals would be publicly tried in the special war tribunal of Verdant Tarn City!
This was the custom of the Star Glory Federation.
As far as the Demon Soldiers and incoming demon beasts were concerned, all of them were treated as nothing more than wild animals; it didn't matter how they were killed.
However, when they reached the Demon General level, their wisdom wasn't any worse than that of a human. They too had established a Demon Beast Empire, dominating the universe for tens of millenniums and once posing as masters of humankind.
This was a humiliating history which humankind had engraved into their hearts and bones.
Therefore, if the high-level demon clan experts were treated as wild animals, it was tantamount to insulting themselves.
Thus, humankind defined the war between the demon clan and themselves as a war of survival between two different civilizations.
The demon beasts of or above the level of Demon General were treated as commanders of the enemy civilization. Once they were captured, they would be treated as POWs and get a trial in the war tribunal, where they would be punished properly according to the laws.
As for the outcome of the trial, there has always been just one.
The death penalty, which would be carried out immediately!
Not only that, the death penalty would be enacted by two kinds of people.
First would be low-level cultivators who had personally taken part in the war and performed brilliantly on the battlefield.
Second would be ordinary citizens, the relatives of the people who had died under the jaws of demon beasts and had a blood feud with them.
As far the sinister Demon Generals, Demon Kings, and even Demon Emperors went, they were not afraid of death at all.
They were no different than the high-level cultivators of humankind, who would also magnanimously die when there was no way left.
However, for the Demon King who was a respected figure in the Blood Demon Sector, dying in the hands of low-level cultivators and the ordinary citizens who did not even have the strength to tie up a chicken was truly a humiliating thing.
In the Star Glory Federation, even an insignificant ordinary worker had the chance to kill a Demon King and personally avenge their families. This was the greatest solace and the greatest inspiration for mankind’s morale!
So, Li Yao gloriously became one of the thousand executioners.
The peerless Demon King who was equivalent to a Core Formation Stage powerhouse of humankind would die in his and 999 fellows' hands!