A progressing storyline narrating your journey to become the Ruler of the Gods.



Year 9001, March, Planet Zeppelin

It has been 19 years since we humans destroyed our home planet for the 17th time, and I am the only survivor.
19 years ago, the remaining humans were finally able to get their space dimension device to work and found this planet, now named Zeppelin.
It was about time, because in our pursuit of this technology we had just finished destroying the only remaining earthlike planet in the known universe. Only the richest people were supposed to use the space dimension device, but they didn't anticipate John. John Doe, the hacker.
John was able to reprogram the device in such a way that it warped not only the 653 VIPs who were supposed to use it, but also the other 1.3 million survivors, teleporting them all onto the new planet.
I was one of those survivors.
Until our arrival, nobody could have imagined this new world. It was totally different from anything int he known universe: this universe was ruled by gods.
Humans were no longer able to reproduce by themselves; they had to ask a god to help them create a child.
Even the very laws of physics were different. Planets didn't rotate on fixed axes or pull one another with gravitational forces like they did in our home universe.
Instead, gods blew the planets around at a whim. It was simply another way to demonstrate their might, like some kind of competition. The further and faster they blew the planets away, the stronger they were.
Not long after we arrived on Zeppelin, a god named Hyperion came to visit us. He wondered how it was even possible for so many humans to come to his planet without his involvement.
Hyperion was curious about the humans before him, so he decided to play with them. Suddenly he created light so bright that it blinded hundreds of humans, then he threw a mountain into the masses. Thousands died in an instant, and so began the 19-year-war against Hyperion.
I alone survived the war. Through the conflict, I could feel myself changing: losing my humanity and becoming something else, something Godlike.
I couldn't create light like Hyperion, but in those years I was able to develop my own special skill to create clones of myself out of shadows! Even Hyperion wasn't able to do that, so in a way I was already above him. But I was still weak; far weaker than Hyperion.
Sadly, shadow clones couldn't scratch Hyperion; they couldn't even approach him.
When they tried, he created a blinding light which dissipated my clones in under a second. He simply laughed and said they were useless, and that I couldn't call myself a god.
But he had underestimated me and my clones. Even though they were of no use in fighting him, they helped me progress much faster that Hyperion could have imagined.
I was reminded of the slimes I had seen years ago, on Zeppelin. At that time, I still wasn't able to create shadow clones and had tried to fight one by myself. It didn't go as I expected.
The slimes looked weak, but even one almost killed me before I managed to escape....
But with my Shadow Clones, it was a different story. I could just send clones to fight the slimes, and there was no risk involved. Even when they died, I didn't take any damage; in fact, I became stronger! I received the experience they gained as if I was fighting the slimes myself. Which meant that, with every clone defeated, I only became stronger.
Then I felt a surge of hope. It wouldn't be long until I was strong enough; soon I would beat Hyperion!

1: Hyperion beatenEdit

Prerequisite : Defeat Hyperion

Year 9009, July, Planet Zeppelin

Today it happened.
Hyperion never expected it; I finally beat him in a fair fight. It took me 8 years to prepare, and the fight lasted for hours, but it was worth it.
Now he has no choice but to accept me as a new god. Someone stronger that a god must be a god themselves. There is no way around it....
At least that was what I thought before one weak-looking bunny easily wiped out all my shadow clones.
Even though I'm a lot stronger than one of my shadow clones, I realized that I probably wouldn't be able to beat most of the stronger-looking monsters by myself.
And I didn't want to try it. Unlike my clones, I was afraid to die. And unlike Hyperion, who never really tried to kill me, the monsters might just do it.
This then made me realize why they can't be compared to a god. The monsters in this universe are unbelievable strong, a lot stronger than anything imaginable in my old universe.
But they are stupid. They only think about eating, killing, and reproducing. I was left to wonder why they can reproduce while humans can't, but that was a different matter.
What's important is that I can create things and have my own minds. Monsters can't. That's what makes me a god, and them monsters. Thus was my existential crisis resolved.
After I defeated Hyperion, he was suddenly very nice. Maybe this universe has some kind of law where the weaker gods have to obey the stronger gods. After that, it didn't take long until he showed me the light.
How to create light, that is. It was actually a lot easier than I had thought. It is just like creating shadow clones, but in reverse. I don't know why I hadnt thought of it myself.
It took me only a few days to master the skill. Soon after that, Hyperion asked me how he could create shadow clones. I will teach you when you can defeat me, is all that iI answered. Only fair, I thought, because he only told me how to create light after I defeated him. But it probably won't ever happen. My shadow clones are the only reason I was able to catch up to him in the first place; if he can't create them, he will never catch up to me again.
Yes, I know that is unfair, but I also don't want to tell hime how to create my clones. They are what makes me special and I know I can become stronger that anyone with my clones, if I use them right.
Or so I assumed, but then Hyperion told me he is by far the weakest god of all and there are gods who are billions of times stronger that him.
He told me that Itztli is the god with the next-highest rank. So if I want to climb up the ladder of the gods, I should defeat him next.
But he also warned me that, even if Itztli is only one rank higher, the power gap between them is unbelievably huge.
Once Hyperion challenged Itztli after years of training, when he felt like he had grown strong enough...
The outcome was not a close fight as Hyperion had expected. The fight was over less than one second after it began.
Hyperion thought that he could blind Itztli just before attacking him, and created his brightest light before charging in at full speed.
But it was no use. His charging attack became slower and slower. The attack lasted less that one second, but for Hyperion it felt like hours unconscious by Itztli's gravitational force.
Itztli seemed to generate some sort of gravitational field which drained the power from Hyperion.
Hyperion wasn't able to land a single blow on Itztli, or even come near him. After that he never tried to fight him again.
After hearing that story, I realized that if I went on like I had so far, I'd never be able to beat all the gods... it would take millions of years. It had already taken quite some time to beat Hyperion.
That also reminded me of how old I had gotten already. It had been 27 years since I arrived in this new dimension.
Yet somehow Hyperion looks younger than I am. How is that possible? I'm sure he is a lot older than me. Maybe it had something to do with my newly gained power: the 'Light' I could now create. Could I use it to make myself younger? I would do some testing with it.

2: My first RebirthEdit

Prerequisite: Use Rebirth once

Year 9012, September, Planet Zeppelin

After several attempts, I finally came up with a solution for my aging problem.
When I combined my power to create light with my power to create shadow clones, I found I could create an almost perfect copy of myself; one that looks like I did when I was 30 years younger. Just the way I was when I arrived at this new universe. The power to create light also let me transfer my soul to my new lifeform.
Now I could really call myself a god. With this, I'm immortal. From then on, when I felt like I'd become too old, I could just create a copy of my younger self and transfer my soul into it.
I call this power 'Rebirth'.
It has quite a few disadvantages, though. My new body was not just as young as I had been 30 years before, but it was also weak as I had been then. But with all the knowledge I gained in the last 30 years, I was sure I would become as strong as I had been before in a lot less time that it had originally taken me. This means, in another 30 years, my new self would wipe the floor with my old self.
Also, even though my soul was the same, somehow nobody else recognized my new self... When I talked to Hyperion after I gained my new body, he didn't recognize me at all. Even worse, he didn't even remember my old self anymore! It is like I didn't even exist... This was kind of sad. All my previous achievements were gone, and everything I gained with my previous body was lost.
But I still think my rebirth power is great. It is better than the alternative. If I died of old age, the other gods might remember me for a while, but I wouldn't be there anymore. So I saw this as a new start, and it was still a lot better than it had been 30 years before. I mean, I still had all my memories. As long as I didn't lose them, I would always win out.
I could just start anew and do everything faster and better than I had before, skipping the mistakes Id made. With this, I would have as much time as I needed to prepare to face Itztli!

3: ItztliEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Itztli

Year 9019, January, Planet Zeppelin

Hyperion had told me that Itztli could use gravitational force to slow down everything which came near him, so I trained quite a bit to be able to move under high pressure.
I felt quite confident in my power after training for another few years after winning against Hyperion. Even 50 times the normal gravitational force couldn't slow me in the slightest. When I first challenged Itztli, I thought that was all I would need. Charge in at high speed and be able to withstand a lot of gravitational force.
After the fight I knew better. Hyperion didn't overestimate Itztli at all. I was barely able to reach him with my charge, and threw one punch at him with full force. Shortly after that I gave up. The impact broke my fist and it felt like Itztli didn't even take any damage. He was just standing there laughing: "Come back after a thousand years of training, maybe then you won't destroy your fist after the first punch and I might feel like throwing one in return." His body felt more solid than stone. At that time his defense felt insurmountable.
But I didn't give up. I mean, I hadn't even gotten started yet; there was still so much to do. How could I give up after fighting the second-weakest god? My pride wouldn't allow that. I wanted to take my place at the top of the pantheon. I didn't know how many gods I would have to defeat to be able to stand above them all, but I knew I could do it. I became stronger every day, unlike Hyperion whose power hadn't increased at all since I defeated him. The gods here seem to be stagnant in power. That meant that Hyperion would never be able to defeat Itztli. The power gap between them would always remain constant. But I'm different. It was just a matter of time until I could close the power gap between me and Itztli, or even surpass him.
With that in mind, I started training again. I adjusted my training methods to address this newfound weakness. My fists needed to be harder than stone, so I began by smashing rocks. A lot of them. I started with simple stones, moving on to harder stones every day. After three years of training, I was able to smash iron with my bare fists.
That left me feeling confident. I thought, this is the time to get my revenge,Eand went on to fight him again. I was right. This time, when I charged at hime. I barely felt his gravitational force at all. When my fist reached his skin, it didn't feel like stone anymore; it felt like I punched through butter. Pieces of stone flew away from his jaw, where I had struck him.
Itztli didn't even have time to react; he just fell unconscious after one punch.
I hoped it was not too much. I didn't want to kill him, and I decided to stay with him until he woke up. It turned out he was alright. Well, he is a god, after all. Gods don't die that easily.
The fight had gone a bit differently than either of us expected. I didn't think I had improved that much, and Itztli couldn't believe such a thing was possible. Yes, that is the power of my Shadow Clones. My own special ability. WIth them, no goal seems to be out of reach.
I talked to him for a bit and he showed me how he could create stones from nothing. Thats how he was able to make his skin as hard as stone: he created a second skin of stone to surround him. It protected him from a lot of things, if not from my last punch. When I asked him how he did it, he didn't mind telling me. It wasn't really creating stone from nothing, as it appeared. The universe has huge masses of asteroids which can provide as much stone as you need. So his power was actually splitting asteroids from far away and teleporting them to his hands. Somehow that sounded more amazing to me than creating stone from nothing. I mean, teleporting something from far away to his hands? I wished I could do that. That was also how his gravitational force worked. Because he was always teleporting stones from far away to himself, the impact of the incoming stones created a huge gravitational force that surrounds him. So it was actually more of a side effect than a separate ability.
When I asked him if he could teleport anything other than stone to himself, he looked down and answered no. The teleporting power was actually not his own, but the power of the asteroids. He merely had the power to communicate with the asteroids and asked them for stones, which they didnt mind providing. Hundreds of years ago, Itztli had a hobby of crafting various things from stone. Day after day, he created something new; always out of stone. At that time, he still used a pickaxe to mine stones from the mountains on this planet. He wished every day for some easier way to get stones for his hobby, because he spent more time extracting the stones than it took him to create things out of them. One day, when he saw a shooting star, he made his wish again. The shooting star - which was an asteroid - heard his wish and answered him: "Where I live there is only stone. Too many stones, and I am bored of looking only at stones. That is why I'm flying around: to see other things than stones. My friends at home would be glad to give you as much stone as you nee, if you just ask them. I will give you the ability to communicate with them." And so Itztli gained his power to create stone He was ecstatic.
Now it sounded to me that the asteroids were actually the ones who were amazing... I though asteroids were just big, lifeless rocks. After I heard that, I asked Itztli whether he could introduce me to the asteroids because I also had a lot of things in minds that I wanted to create with stones. Itztli didn't mind, and introduced me to his asteroid friend. It wend quite well. Now I also had the ability to create stone from nothing, which opened up a lot of new possibilities.
A while late, I talked to Itztli about my goal to become the strongest god in the universe. He just laughed and said that it was impossible. He said he was one of the weakest gods around and, even if I defeated him in one punch, it only happened because he underestimated me and didn't bother to prepare for it. I would surely lose to Gaia, Itztli assured me. She was the next stronger god, and his power didn't even come close to hers. But I didn't believe him, so he agreed to show me the way to Gaia's homeworld.
My next stop was chosen. Onward, to Gaia!

4: Bunnies, Goblins and GaiaEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Gaia

Year 9023, January, Planet Gaia

Itztli had told me where Gaia could be found. She was not on Planet Zeppelin, but had her own planet. She had named it after herself: "Gaia".
I also managed to repair the space dimension device, the one the old humans had used to reach this universe, and now I could use it as a space ship to travel to other planets. Using it, I reached Planet Gaia in no time at all.
There was still one small problem, though. Although Itztli had told me where the planet was, after searching for five weeks I still wasn't able to find Gaia. It is quite hard to find someone if the only address you have is the planet. This planet was also quite big. At least, it felt that way when I was searching it. Even though I could already run at mach speed (which is faster than any living thing at my old universe), in those five weeks I had only covered a small area of the continent on which I had started my search. To make matters worse, I couldn't find any lifeforms other than plants, trees, and, some bunnies and goblins. Because of that I began to feel a bit lonely; there was nobody around I could have asked where Gaia might be. However, her planet was beautiful: full of life and nature. I was able to discover a lot of different plants and trees I had never seen before.
It also wasn't like I wasted my time there. When I first arrived, my clones still had trouble defeating the bunnies. After the first five weeks, they could defeat them easily. This also gave me some confidence, I had grown quite a bit stronger during my search. As I thought about what would happen if I told someone in my old world, "After 4 years of hard training, I can no easily defeat bunnies!" I just had to laugh at myself.
The bunnies on Gaia looked almost the same as in my old dimension. Unlike the ones I had known, however, the bunnies there had ample ways to protect themselves. They were a lot faster than any animal in my old dimension had been. I didn't have a way to accurately measure their speed, but in my estimation they could run at a speed of at least 800 km/h. They could also easily jump from one side of a river to the other. The river had a width of at least 50 meters. When my clones had tried to fight some of them years before, the bunnies just ran them overs. My clones couldn't even get near them. At a distance of 100 meters, the felt the approach of an attacking clone. The bunny's head would go up, it would jump, and a fraction of a second later my shadow clone was destroyed. At that time I couldn't even see the bunny, it was so fast. With a jumping speed of almost 800 km/h they only had to extend their claws and they could have killed most living things in my old universe.
But after I was able to run at mach speed, they seemed to move in slow motion for me. Even my clones outmatched their speed by quite a large margin. The tables had turned. My clones could reach them and defeat them before they could even tense their legs for a jump. It is always nice to see tangible evidence of my progress. Something that had seemed impossible at first was now easily achievable.
When I first fought monsters, I thought they could reproduce by themselves, without the aid of a god. I though this because their numbers would always increase again after a while. But now I knew better; they just seemed to appear out of nowhere. I defeated a few bunnies, and a few seconds later another bunny just appeared before my eyes. It came out of nowhere. I wondered how that was possible. Then, I tried to defeat all of them at once before they appeared again to see what would happen when all of them were gone. Nothing changed. Again, they appeared in front of me out of thin air. From my point of view, it looked like there was some god behind the scenes who created them just like I can create shadow clones. Maybe Gaia? There also seemed to be a maximum number of bunnies. After that number was reached, they wouldn't increase their numbers anymore. The speed at which they appeared was also constant. So when I defeated all of them, I had to wait until they appeared again. This also meant that when one of my shadow clones was fast and strong enough to defeat them as quickly as they appeared, there was no point in letting more than one of my clones fight them. Not that I minded. It just meant I could use more of my clones to train in something else.
I also found it weird that, when I killed a bunny or another monster, they almost completely disappeared after a short while if I didn't touch them. They just left a trace of some white aura which would also disappear when I touched it, but I could make it reappear whenever I wanted to see it. It looked kind of beautiful, but I still hadn't found a real use for it. Because I could let it disappear and appear whenever I wanted, I decided to keep all of it. Maybe it would become useful later on. I began to call it Divinity.
I also tried to fight the goblins on this planet, but they were a whole different matter. Even though I could defeat them, my clones took heavy losses while fighting them. They were much slower than the bunnies, but the speed was much less important when fighting them. Because they didn't like the bunnies and wanted to feel superior to them, the goblins would fight them all the time and had trained to fight the bunnies at their high speed. They could effortlessly predict the movements of the bunnies, and could anticipate those of my clones just as easily. Even if my clones ran around in circles, changing their paths constantly, the goblins somehow always knew where the attack would come from and could easily counter it. But while fighting them, I found out that this was a good way to practice summoning more shadow clones at once. Every time I created a shadow clone, I gave it a small part of my soul so I would be able to communicate with it and take in its experience. When a clone was destroyed, that part of my soul would come back to me. All this splitting and combining of my soul made my soul ever stronger. The problem was that my current body had limitations and could only hold as many soul parts as I was able to make when I first imbued it with my consciousness. That meant that I couldn't make smaller parts of my soul to create more shadow clones right away. But, when I felt it was time to rebirth again, I could divide my soul into smaller parts and summon more shadow clones with them. Unfortunately I also felt there was a limit to that method of increasing the number of shadow clones I could create. So it won't be like that forever. I'm still far from reaching my limit though, so I'll think about it when I have reached it.
Another three weeks later, I actually found Gaia. More accurately, Gaia found me. She suddenly appeared before me and asked: "What do you want here? Why do you disrupt the nature on my planet?" "I came here to challenge you to a duel!" I brazenly replied. "Go back where you came from, I don't see any reason for it," answered Gaia, and made to disappear again. I couldn't let her get away. I needed to fight her if I wanted to become the strongest. After defeating Hyperion and Itztli, I had begun to relish the feeling I got after defeating a god. The feeling was indescribable. I felt so much lighter, like a new door opened for me. It was like I gained part of the power of the goid I had just defeated. I suspected that if I were to skip one god, it would become impossible to defeat the next one. So I went after her as fast as I could, and reached her just before she disappeared again. "Stop! Please fight me. I'm on a journey to become stronger and just have to test out my power against a strong god like you!" Gaia replied, "You will surely lose; I can see that the difference in our power is too vast to permit a fair fight. You still want to try?" After a short "Yes!" of complete confidence, I charged toward her at full speed and attacked only to find that my fist had become stuck in the earth. How did that happen? I thought. Gaia was standing before me and I had thrown a punch at her, not at the ground. And not only my fist was stuck: the more I struggled to free myself, the more the earth below sucked me in. Gaia slowly walked behind me, struck me a blow, and knocked me out cold. When I awoke, I was free again but Gaia had disappeared.
That had gone much different that I'd expected; a big loss for me. But before the fight, I'd known nothing of Gaia. Now I had learned a few things and could prepare for them! It looked like Gaia could appear and disappear right in front of me before I knew it. That could mean one of three things: She could teleport, she moved faster than my eyes could follow, or she had some way to manipulate my mind - like an illusion - to disguise he movement. Gaia could also manipulate the earth at will. That made me think that there was a high probability her other power was some kind of illusion power. While fighting the bunnies, I trained my eyes to see very fast-moving objects but I couldn't see Gaia move at all. So I didn't think she could move faster than my eyes could see. A teleporting power seemed possible at first, but I felt like there would have to be some amount of wind when someone is teleporting. If something teleports, the air has to fill the spot it leaves and moves away from where it arrives. I couldn't feel any wind at all. From that, I concluded that her power had to be an illusion.
This made me recall the goblins. I had fought them already, but they could predict most of the moves my shadow clones could do. Only if more than 100 of my shadow clones attacked at once were they eventually able to find an opening to defeat a goblin. Chances were high that the illusion of Gaia was similar to the power of the goblins. Their power to predict the moves of their enemies might actually be the power of illusion. If an enemy thinks it moves to a different place than it actually moves, and the goblin knows that, it is probably easy for them to predict their moves. I had to observe the goblins for a while until I could break their illusion; or at least find some way to prevent it before trying to fight Gaia again.
While her other power - the manipulation of the earth which was holding me down - was probably the biggest reason why I lost, I thought it should be quite easy to counter. Gaia could manipulate the earth at will, but I had the ability to summon unlimited amounts of stones. With that, I decided to use my stones to block all soil in the area so as to render her unable to use her power of earth. I just had to make sure I could summon enough stones to block the whole fighting area as soon as the fight started.
After about three weeks of analyzing the goblins' fighting style, I was finally able to understand their illusion power. Thereafter, I let my clones fight them for another week to get more data without letting them realize I was observing them After all, who knew where Gaia was and whether she was watching me and my clones? It was her planet, after all. So, I took care not to let her know what I was doing. To anyone watching, it should have looked like my clones were fighting the goblins without a plan as they had in the beginning and somehow managing to beat them if their number were high enough.
Then I went back to Zeppelin with all the intelligence I'd gathered. There, I set up my clones to fight in the same fighting style used by the goblins. They had now learned every move the goblins do. The goblins were on Gaia's planet, and Gaia might even have created them herself, so I took this into consideration when I calculated the power difference. I trained with my clones for another 2 months, and improved my prediction ability to far exceed what the goblins could do. I could now predict the behavior of more that 500 goblins at once. With that, I felt that it was time to go back to the planet Gaia and face its namesake goddess.
This time, I was able to find here much sooner. I went back to where I had first met her, and somehow could just feel where she was. That made me think that my training had been sufficient. Her illusion power didn't matter now. I could sense her without seeing her and called out "I'm here to fight you again. This time, I will win!" Gaia looked bored while saying: "You will just lose again..." As soon as she said that, I summoned my prepared stones to cover all the ground in the area. While Gaia was still surprised, I ran to where she was standing. Not where I saw her but where I felt her. I felt her presence roughly 3 meters to the left of where I saw her standing, so I went there and threw my punch.
Gaia barely dodged my attack, and leapt away while summoning her earth. Her earth power was stronger than I'd thought and in some places it had already broken past the stones covering the ground. Luckily, I had an unlimited supply of stones so I just summoned more to fill the gaps. It became a summoning contest: her earth versus my stones.
I was faster. I could summon my stones to cover up her earth faster than she could call it. That made the difference in this fight. I could still attack her after summoning my stones, while her only choice was to dodge my attacks. Eventually I landed a hit on her. The longer the fight wore on, the more blows I managed to land on her, until she finally lost consciousness.
In the end, I won after almost an hour of fighting. Just as I had planned, although it was harder than I'd thought. It took quite a bit of stamina, and I don't know if I would have won if the fight had lasted another 30 minutes.
After that, I talked to her a bit and asked how she was able to break my stones so easily. Gaia replied that she changed the basic structure of the stones which converted them to soil. Thereafter, it was easy for her to control it.
I told her that I also wanted to create my own planet sooner or later and that I would like to learn how to create soil out of stones. Gaia was quite bored, so she readily agreed to teach me.
A few weeks later, I was able to create my first mound of soil out of stones and was happy. I was still much slower than Gaia and the amount and quality of the soil I could create out of stone was poor compared to hers. Still, my fast progress astonished her. Another two months later I was already almost as good as Gaia and I told her it was time for me to go.
"I want to challenge the next god! Which god is the next stronger one in the ranking of this universe?" I asked her. She replied simple "Shu". Gaia herself was never even able to come near Shu the one time shed fought him. His power was just too different. Shu could control the wind and freely fly around. Gaia's power of earth manipulation was specialized for fighting on the ground, so she had trouble fighting someone in the air.
Gaia told me that Shu also lived on the planet Gaia. He had actually helped her create the planet. His home was on the highest mountain on the planet, because he liked to be high above the ground.
With that, I bade Gaia farewell and started walking towards my next destination: the highest mountain on Gaia!

5-1: The biggest mountainEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Shu

Year 9028, June, Planet Gaia

High was not sufficient to describe the mountain I approached. I could clearly see it rising against the horizon from a thousand kilometers away. When I was still a hundred kilometers out, I was already unable to see the whole mountain without turning my head. The sky was clear and blue, without a cloud in sight, but I couldn't see the summit. It was that big.
My estimation was that this mountain was at least 20 kilometers tall. That made me wonder: is there even air on top of this mountain? What should I do if there isn't any?
But then I thought, if Shu was on top of this mountain, there must be air. Even if he was a god, he probably needed to breathe. If Shu was able to reach the top of the mountain, I should be able to as well.
Fearlessly, I pushed forward and started to climb the mountain. Climbing mountains was good training anyway, I thought; a new challenge awaited me.
I didnt plan to reach the peak on the first try. I just wanted to get a feel for it and find out how far I could go, then push a bit further each day.
I'd had some experience climbing mountains on Zeppelin. Of course, the peak of the highest mountain there was only around 4,700 meters above sea level.
This mountain on Gaia was at least four times as high. That was an order of magnitude greater than anything I had attempted before. It's not like going four times as high is only four times as hard. The higher you go, the more difficult every step becomes. So climbing up to a height of 20,000 meters is at least a hundred times as hard as climbing a mere 4,700 meters.
Soon enough, I was able to reach a height of 2,000 meters in half an hour. That was where the first signs of trouble appeared. I suddenly saw wolves. Lots of them. They looked hungry and seemed intent on blocking my progress. I summoned my shadow clones and sent them to fight off the wolves, but it wasn't my clones who fought off the wolves. It was the wolves who fought off my clones!
My clones managed to defeat a few wolves, but their numbers increased faster than my clones were able to beat them. They stalked relentlessly closer, and it looked like they planned to make a meal of me.
I decided to retreat for now. The wolves may have won the first fight, but I was confident that I would win the war. While the wolves would have been much slower than me on flat ground, they knew the mountains intimately and could outmaneuver me there. They continuously tried to cut off my retreat, but luckily I could re-summon my clones fast enough to fight off the few wolves that were able to catch up to me.
A few minutes later, I was able to reach the plains that bordered the mountain and the wolves suddenly broke away and returned to their lair.
It looked like they were wary to fight me on even terrain, where they would lose their home-field advantage.
Though I managed to escape, I had been unable to reach Shu; I didn't even come close. I had to do something about the wolves, or I would never be able to fight Shu.
I decided I would do this one step at a time, ignoring Shu for now, and focus on finding ways to fight off the wolves faster than they appeared.
In our first encounter, I had noticed that they closely watched each other instead of watching me or my clones. Every time a clone wanted to attack a wolf, a different wolf appeared out of nowhere and killed my clone. Their teamwork was impeccable. By contrast, my clones always tried to fight the wolves ahead of them and didn't pay much attention to the other clones.
Up to this point I had always used my clones to train, and their approach mirrored my own. I worked alone, so I didn't really have much use for teamwork.
But on this mountain, when facing thousands of wolves, I was unable fight them off by myself and it would have been really risky to try. That meant I had to teach my clones some teamwork skills to match the teamwork of the wolves, or even surpass it.
So I sent clones to fight the wolves again and again, watching and taking notes on the way the wolves fought. While the wolves became stronger and more adapted to my clones, my clones improved much faster. After two more weeks, I felt it was time to advance again.
This time, I was able to reach a height of 6,000 meters without much trouble. I climbed in the center of a group of my clones, and they cleared the path around me. At the height of 6,500 meters, it suddenly became a bit harder.
The wind became ever stronger, gusting in freezing gales which threatened to rip me from the mountain. Though the wind was strong, the air was so thin that it was hard for me to breathe. The wolves, on the other hand, didn't seem to have any trouble at all. My clones had a hard time just staying on their feet. The wolves used that to their advantage and pushed my clones off the mountain at every opportunity.
I was still able to summon clones faster than they tumbled to their deaths, but watching them I was keenly aware of my own fate should I allow the same to happen to me. Less than a third of the way up the mountain, and I was already struggling. With that in mind, I decided to stay at this height for a while without trying to advance further. My clones and I had to adjust to the wind and ice for a while longer, or risk coming to a bad end.
I also thought back on the other gods I had fought. Until now, I'd always lost on the first attempt.
For Shu, I felt I had to win the first time I fought him. I feared that even I might die if I were thrown from the 20,000-meter summit. Try as I might, I could not work out how to fly at that time. While I was able to run fast enough to almost fly, once airborne I lost my speed quite quickly. Besides, in the mountains there was no space to build up enough speed in the first place.
I came to the conclusion that the solution was to increase my meditation skills. I meditated for three weeks, keeping my eyes shut to block out the outside world, and most of my clones did the same. While meditating, I tried to feel out the way the wolves moved together and countered all attacks against their brethren. During these three weeks, I also figured out how to shape my energy, surrounding myself with offensive and defensive auras. With these, my clones and I could feel the wolves moving and attacking, allowing us to counter all their attacks without being touch
Soon after, the auras were strong enough to make the wolves too scared to even attack and they moved off in search of easier prey. That left the way to the top clear, and with my meditation training I was also able to move much better at this height. My defensive aura blocked the brunt of the wind and lessened its freezing bite so I could move almost as well as I had down on the plains where it was thirty degrees warmer and much less windy. Of course, scaling the steep incline was still harder than walking on flat ground. But it was still easy enough to allow me to continue
My breathing also became much more natural. I managed to control my aura enough to concentrate the air around me. That way, my blood got as much oxygen as it needed even as the air became thinner.
One day later, I reached a height of 18,000 meters. My auras were still enough to shelter me from the wind and freezing cold, so I could move without issues.
I could almost see the summit now. Only almost, though, which was good. Shu couldn't yet see me at this distance, so I decided it was a good time to stop and think of a strategy to beat him.
Going further without a solid plan would be risky.
I thought that he could probably fly, because Gaia told me he could manipulate the wind. He also had to have similar auras to mine to withstand the cold without succumbing to hypothermia. What's more, hed need a way to concentrate air like me or perhaps even create air. Otherwise, it would have been impossible for him to breathe at this height.
At this time I still couldn't fly, and neither did I have an effective long-range attack. That would have been a problem if I had been facing Shu already. So my next goal was to develop a long-range attack to be able to hit Shu at a distance.
I was able to summon and throw stones, but my defensive aura could effortlessly block any stones I threw. I had to think about something better.
While climbing up the mountain, I had improved my aura quite drastically, so my thought was to form a ball out of my aura. Because Shu had a high affinity to wind, I reasoned that the best way to fight him was fire. I tried to combine my offensive aura with fire and form a superheated, concentrated ball of energy.
This was really hard to do, especially because the air here was thin and it was easily below -40C. I was able to concentrate the air around me, but I could only extend the effect to a distance of about a foot away from my body.
The first time I created a flame, it instantly consumed all my concentrated air and I almost lost consciousness. That was really dangerous.
I summoned all my clones and let them try to create fire while I took in their experience, rather than risk myself, until they could do it without trouble. At first, most of my clones lost consciousness after successfully creating a fire element, but they gradually became better at controlling it.
About three weeks later, all of them could create a fire element without falling unconscious. The next step was to form the fire into a ball so that it could be thrown far away. The fire was way too hot to touch with my fists, so I had to create a containing aura around it. I had to make sure that the fire didn't peter out after it was thrown, and the aura around the fire had to disappear as it reached its target.
This took a lot of trial and error, but fortunately I had a few thousand clones to do the work for me. I told them to throw aura balls at each other until the aura ball was good enough to knock out the clone it was thrown at.
Sure, I basically told them to kill each other, but they are just shadow clones and don't have souls of their own, so no issue there.
After watching them, I found out that this training was twice as effective as I had thought. The clones who threw the aura balls improved my offensive skills, while the other clones tried to dodge or block the aura balls which improved my defensive skills.
Three days later, almost all of the defensive clones could still easily block or dodge the aura balls. It seemed to me that my current version of the aura ball was not good enough to beat Shu. It was neither fast nor hot enough. So I thought, why not try to add some wind to it? I tried to add plenty of extra oxygen to intensify the fire, and also some wind to the encapsulating aura to improve its speed.
It was not as easy as I'd thought. It took my clones another five weeks to master this new skill, but it was worth it. It improved my aura balls a lot. They were much faster than I could run at that time. They flew at a speed of more than 9,000 kilometers per hour.
After perfecting my new attack, I had also learned to control my aura much better. I could now extend it up to a few meters from myself, and even grab things with it. This meant that, if I got thrown off the mountain during the fight, I could use my aura to cling to the rocks and arrest my fall.

5-2: The fight vs ShuEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Shu

I finally felt strong enough to face Shu and climbed up the last two thousand meters.
Unlike Gaia, Shu was easy to find. At the summit, there was a plateau with a house on it. I could even see some trees and a garden. At first, I wondered how that was possible at minus forty degrees.
Then I noticed there was a wind barrier surrounding the top of the mountain. This wind barrier was able to hold off the cold air outside, and it also generated air within. That meant it was much warmer inside, and the air was also much thicker.
I finally understood how he could stand to live at top of the mountain. With the ability to create an air barrier to control the climate, the cold wasn't an issue. The problem was, I was outside that barrier. It was quite strong as well. I sent one of my clones to try to break through it and the clone was destroyed almost instantly.
Time to test my aura ball, I thought to myself as I charged one up and threw it at the wind barrier. There was a small explosion, and a tiny gap opened. Sadly, the gap was too small for me to go through and it closed itself almost instantly.
Realizing that I could only do this if I tried it together with all my clones, I summoned all my clones again and had everyone create aura balls at once. Just before I could throw them, Shu suddenly appeared outside the barrier. He summoned a massive blast of wind, which instantly blew all my clones away before they could throw their aura balls. He was quite mad and shouted "Why do you want to destroy my home? I won't let you do that!
Apparently it had taken him years to create this barrier and he even then he could only do it with the help of Gaia. I told him that I had no intention of destroying his home, I just wanted to fight him to test my strength and the barrier was in the way. He was still quite mad, but he accepted my explanation and challenge to him.
It seemed like my clones were again useless for this fight, as all of them were already gone. But I had kind of expected that. It appeared that my clones were weak against the powers of other gods. They somehow cancelled out my clones.
After experiencing his initial wind blast, I could feel that Shu was quite powerful, but I was still confident. My defensive aura was able to withstand this wind blast without a problem. It was unfortunate that he already seen my trump card, the aura ball, but I had also learned from it. It could be quite dangerous to create an aura ball too slowly. His wind could have reflected my aura ball before I threw it. If it exploded in my hand, I would be defeated by my own attack!
But once I was aware of the danger, it was easy to avoid. I just had to create the aura ball out of his line of sight or at least throw it so that his wind blasts couldn't turn it back on me. My aura balls were faster than his wind blast when I threw them at full power, so the biggest problem was creating them quickly enough.
Shu also seemed to realize this, and tried everything to deny me the chance to create an aura ball. But that also told me that I had all but won the fight already. While his wind blasts couldn't really hurt me, he feared my aura ball attack.
Shu could fly and was quite fast, while I couldn't fly and was bound to the mountain.
It was kind of funny, in a way. He flew around me and threw wind blasts, while I was just standing there waiting for a good moment to create my aura ball.

Just when I thought it was a good time to create an aura ball, I realized what Shu was doing. His wind blasts couldn't really hurt me, but they had destroyed quite a bit of the mountain. I was standing on top of a small outcropping, and the closest stable place I could have jumped was more than 50 meters away.
Shu was already preparing to destroy the rocks on which I stood. Luckily I had noticed it before the blast reached me and used all my strength to jump away. My jump destroyed the outcropping before the blast reached it, but it gave me just enough momentum to close the 50-meter gap to the next section of the mountain.
That was also my big chance. While I was jumping away, I created the aura ball where Shu didn't see or expect it. He followed me from behind and, when I landed, I turned towards Shu and launched my readied aura ball at full power.
Not expecting it, Shu was unable to react fast enough and took the full power of my aura ball, which knocked him unconscious.
I didn't want to let him suffer a potentially deadly 20,000-meter drop while unconscious, so I grabbed him just before he fell and carried him to the top of the mountain.
I also surrounded him with my aura until he woke, to prevent him freezing to death, because I was unable to enter his wind barrier without destroying it.
After he woke up, he thanked me for sparing him the fall and invited me into his house.
The view here was quite stunning. The wind barrier was almost invisible from the inside, and it acted like a huge lens, so I could see half of the planet from there. It truly made me feel like a god.
From time to time clouds obscured the view, but with Shu's power to control the wind he could easily blow them away.
I won the fight, so Shu asked me what I wanted for the victory. Obviously, I wanted to learn his power to create air and control the wind. It was a really useful power, especially at a height like this where there was so little oxygen. It also opened up new possibilities. I had found that it was almost impossible to fly based on my speed alone, but with the power to do create air and control the wind, flying seemed easily within reach.
Of course, I first had to learn that power. Thankfully, Shu accepted my request and taught me how to create and control air. He showed me how he was able to split the light into smaller and smaller parts until it didn't shine anymore and became invisible. Then he recombined the smaller particles into bigger ones which caused a reaction and, after a small explosion, turned into air. I didn't realize it before he explained the process, but it was actually not that different from how I created my aura. I had done it subconsciously while concentrating on my aura. I just had to refine the ability that I had already developed, and I was able to create air from basically nothing but a few atoms.
It was still harder than it seemed at first. I took me almost three months to master this power, but I felt like I had achieved a lot since I defeated Gaia.
I had become much more powerful. The preparations for the fight with Shu alone helped me to improve a lot, and after that I was just one step short of being able to fly under my own power. With the ability to create air, I could also survive in space without a planet at all! The possibilities seemed endless.
I felt really confident in myself after this and asked Shu who the next god was and where I could find him.
Shu told me about Suijin and that I really shouldn't underestimate him. He was much stronger than Shu, and had the ability to create and control water. Because he could create water out of air, Shu always lost to him. He could just instantly convert any air Shu created into water and turn it against him.
That was nothing new for me, though. It was always like that, there was always someone stronger. This just made me excited for my next adventure. Suijin would be the next challenge!

6: Suijin in the desertEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Suijin

Year 9031, June, Planet Gaia

Shu showed me the way to Suijin. He was also on the planet Gaia, but far away; about eight thousand kilometers from Shu's mountain.
As I followed the directions Shu had given me, it became hotter and hotter. I found this strange, as Suijin's ability was to control water. When I was halfway to him, I was standing in a desert. I was already thirsty and I had not prepared to cross a desert, but I went on nevertheless.
It took me only 3 hours to run the first four thousand kilometers, but running in such heat quickly drained my stamina. If I had gone on, I probably would have died of dehydration long before reaching Suijin. For more than two thousand kilometers, I hadn't seen even one river or lake. There was no water at all.

I decided to go back and gather some water to better prepare, only to find that I had been followed... by an army of kobolds. I hadn't even noticed them.
I wondered, were my senses that dull? Even more troubling: I had run at more than one thousand kilometers an hour and they were able to follow me. This didn't bode well.
As I stood there working out what to do, I found that they had surrounded me. By my estimation there were at least three thousand kobolds in a ring around me. They gave way for one another as they approached, the ring of bodies growing ever thicker.
Now I was out of stamina, my throat dry and raw from the desert air, and surrounded by thousands of kobolds at least as fast as I was. And so my journey had come to an end.
Game Over...
Or it would have been, if not for my asteroid friends. Summoning my clones or creating wind and trying to fly away would have cost me too much stamina. The kobolds were also faster than me, so even had I tried to fly away, they could have followed on the ground until I was out of stamina and then finished me. That was, of course, if they decided not to use their spears and throwing axes to bring me down sooner.
On the other hand, summoning stones from my asteroid friends didn't use up any stamina at all, so it was the only reasonable option. I surrounded myself with a huge stone wall just before the kobolds could reach me.
They began to smash through the wall, and were able to do so easily, but the ground was sand and I had learned a bit from Gaia about how to manipulate the earth. So I dug myself a huge hole and summoned stones to block the path behind me. I could dig and close up the way I had come much faster than they could destroy my stone walls.
The hole was also small, so the kobolds lost most of their advantage of numbers; only five or six were able to bring their strength to bear on the walls at a time.
After digging to a depth of about eighty meters, I found a huge underground lake! It was also really cool down here, nothing like the heat above. However there was almost no air down here, so I was glad I had learned how to create air from Shu. If I hadn't, I probably would have suffocated.
While I refreshed myself with the water, I thought that the encounter with the kobolds might actually have been lucky. I probably wouldn't have thought of digging into the earth to find water if I hadn't had to flee from the overwhelming odds above.
Shortly after, I could already hear the kobolds busting down my stone walls. Now that I was refreshed and had regained a bit of my stamina, I thought that this would be a good place to try fighting them.
I made a bit more space, summoned a few clones, and had my little welcoming party wait at the wall until the kobolds destroyed it.
Then I went a bit further, creating a few more walls between myself and the clones with the kobolds. Better be safe than sorry.
The kobolds were faster and much stronger than the wolves I had fought on Shu's mountain, and dispatched the first batch of my clones almost instantly. So I continued digging straight ahead, made more space, summoned another batch of clones, created more walls, and went on digging again.
After about a day of the same, my clones were finally able to defeat one kobold. Just in time, too, because I was really hungry. I could have eaten some of the strange little creatures that scurried around the underground caverns, but I felt like eating kobold meat instead.
The kobolds were a bit like walking wolves; maybe a tad more intelligent, but nothing like human. So I thought of eating wolf meat, which was acceptable for me. With my power to create light, I was also able to make a fire, so I was able to make a meal of grilled sort-of-wolf meat! It wasn't the best meat I had ever eaten, but it tasted alright.
I went on like this for two more weeks before I thought it was time to return to the surface.
To be prepared for any surprises, I let some of my clones go up while I myself stayed down and waited for their report.
I was right to be careful. Two hours later, my clones hadn't come back; they were killed. It seemed like even after two whole weeks, the kobolds above hadn't given up yet and were still waiting for me to emerge from my bunker....
What a patient lot they were!
Down below the earth, my clones could now defeat the kobolds quite easily. But it was cramped here, which left no space for them to surround me, and keeping my enemies from fighting to their fullest.
Up top, they had their speed advantage and could handle the heat much better than I. The underground it was cool and cramped: a bad place to train myself when I wanted to fight quickly in the heat.
I obviously couldn't go on like this forever, so I had to think of something else. What I came up with was to bring my enemies down into the earth instead of going up to meet them and being instantly surrounded. I decided to dig a huge hole, big enough to fit all the kobolds above. An enormous kobold trap!
I dug it deep enough to be sure they wouldn't be able to just jump out after falling in, and shored up the walls with stone so it wouldn't collapse in on itself until I wanted it to.
It took me a full six months to put my trap together. It spanned an area of about ten square kilometers. When I was ready, I sent some of my clones to all the walls and I myself went up in the center of the pit. In these six months, I had also learned to better control my power over the air and was able to hover in the air, so I would be able to float above my trap after emerging from the ground.
My plan was a success! It went just as I had hoped. When I appeared in the center of my trap, thousands of kobolds ran towards me, hurling their weapons with murderous intent. But I was floating around 10 meters above the ground, so they couldn't reach me and I was able to block the few that came near me quite easily. Occasionally a kobold would attempt to reach me with a running leap, trying to hit me in midair. However, as I could move in the air and they couldn't change their direction mid-jump, it was easy to dodge them. Shortly after that, they tried to reach me by clamoring over each other like a sort of living ladder. Any time they got close, I simply floated higher; this also reduced the number of jumping kobolds.
When they had all come inside the radius of my trap, I signaled my clones to destroy the supports. Soon all of the kobolds tumbled into the hole, while I floated safely out of reach.
Slowly, I made my way over to the rim of my pit. I still had quite a bit of trouble staying in the air for very long, and it had taken a lot of stamina to execute my plan, but I had managed it in the end.
I was left standing there in the middle of the desert. Other than the big hole I just made, there was only sand as far as I could see. In all the digging, I had lost all sense of direction and had no idea which way I had come from or where I should search for Suijin. Luckily, I could summon a lot of clones. This time I had thought to enough water with me; I had also waited until dusk to execute my plan. So it was almost night and the air was cooling rapidly.
The darkness was no problem at all. I just created some light, equipped each clone with a bit of it, and let them set out to scout the area. Six hours later, one of my clones found an oasis in the midst of the desert dunes. It was just about three thousand kilometers away from where I was. Thinking that this had to be Suijin's location, I moved toward the oasis. I slowed my pace to conserve my strength, so it took me three more hours to get there.
And I was right. I noticed Suijin lying next to the crystalline waters of the oasis, sipping idly from a coconut.
I approached him to call out my usual challenge, but it was already too late! Several globes of water rose from the pool and flew towards me at blinding speed before I was even able to speak. Suijin still lazed around in the shadow of his palm trees while watching the water balls zip toward me.
Shu had told me a bit about his power and that the power to control air had proven useless against him, so I didn't even try to use it. Instead, I began to create stones and earth. While fighting the kobolds, I had been able to practice my control over stones and earth quite extensively, because of the many walls I had created as I kept retreating.
My walls easily blocked and even absorbed the watery projectiles, so they were no real threat. Suijin soon realized this, as I realized when the water suddenly froze and cracked into thousands of pieces! A storm of ice shards flew toward me and cut through my stone walls like wet paper.
It still wasn't that hard for me to dodge the ice, as destroying my walls stole much of their speed. However, I was now at a disadvantage. He continued to strike out with his icy arrows, while I could only block and dodge them. He could summon many more ice arrows than I could stone walls in the same amount of time, which made it even worse.
I also noticed that the air around me became even drier and thinner than it had been before. It seemed to me that his power was not really to create water, but to extract the moisture from the air and convert it into water. This caused the air to become dry and the water went elsewhere. Wouldnt it be ironic if he had created this whole desert with his power of water?
I could see that his oasis was enormous, and the lake in the center had a radius of at least one kilometer. But the desert was thousands of kilometers across!
So to create this lake, had he destroyed everything for leagues in any direction? What an evil power!
While I pondered the implications of Suijin's power, I was struck with an idea. If he could make his water colder until it became ice, I could make my stones hotter. There was a really easy solution for that. I had to summon the stones not to where I was, but a few thousand meters above! Gravity and friction would heat the stones nicely. By the time they reached us, they would also be moving much faster than I could throw them!
The hard part would be to dodge the frozen projectiles until my makeshift meteorites reached us, because I couldn't create my walls at the same time.
After a few minutes of frantic dodging, my plan bore fruit! The first stones fell towards Suijin. Shocked by their sudden appearance, he tried to stand and dodge them; he knew he wouldn't be able to block them with his ice arrows, but it was already too late. One of my meteorites hit him on his brow and knocked him out cold.
Luckily he didn't die from the impact, and I stopped all the other meteorites before they could reach the ground, leaving most of the oasis intact. But when he woke up, he was furious and refused to talk to me at all. He just shouted, "Don't count your chickens before they hatch! You might have defeated me, but my wife Gefion is much stronger than me and will surely avenge me!"
After that, he disappeared before I could say another word.
That meant I had won, and I had apparently gained an Oasis in the desert just for myself. He'd said that Gefion would avenge him, so I decided just to wait there and save myself the trouble of searching for her. I wanted to beat her anyway. The problem was, the only thing I knew about her was that she was stronger than Suijin.
He also hadn't taught me his power like the other gods before him... But while fighting him, I had watched him create water and I had gotten an idea of how he had done it. So while waiting for Gefion, I tried to teach myself to create water.
A month later, I finally was able to create water just like Suijin did! I still couldn't control it as easily as he did, or freeze it to create ice, but I was sure I'd learn in time. There was still no sight of Gefion, though. Marital conflict, maybe? She sure was taking her time to show up. But I didn't mind, that only meant more time to prepare myself for the fight. I felt certain that this fight would be much harder than the one I had just won against Suijin.
So, as I waited for Gefion to arrive, I used my new oasis as a training ground.

7-1: The big burgersEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Gefion

Year 9032, January, Planet Gaia

While I waited for Gefion to appear, I focused on my training. Occasionally I would fly a circuit around the oasis, both to practice the skill and to keep an eye out for her approach.
I really enjoyed flying around. It cooled me down quite a bit, which was welcome because it was really hot here. I also honed my mastery over water until I was able to create ice. It was not easy to create ice in the desert, but I learned to concentrate my aura enough to transfer the heat from the water to the surrounding space. This cooled the water to the point that it could freeze almost instantly. The scorching desert air caused the ice to melt very quickly, which was a bit annoying but made for good practice.
Three months later, I had become quite bored and began to wonder why Gefion still hadn't appeared. Suijin was quite furious, so I had thought it wouldn't take long for her to arrive. But it seemed that Gefion had other plans.
Within these few months, more and more kobolds had appeared. They had apparently found some way out of the hole I'd dug for them, but that didn't bother me much. I had set up a large number of guard clones surrounding the oasis, and they were able to beat the kobolds quite easily now. The kobolds even provided some decent training for my clones. There was not much else here to do to increase my power, so the kobolds were actually rather welcome.
Another two weeks later, I was almost impatient enough to leave the oasis myself in search of Gefion. As I prepared to leave, I was suddenly faced with some sort of walking hamburgers which had simply appeared in front of me. They were almost as big as me, and jumped happily around. They looked about the same as hamburgers in the human known universe, just a lot bigger. They looked delicious.
At first, I thought I was dreaming or having hallucinations, because I was quite hungry. But I wasn't imagining them; the burgers were quite real.
From time to time, the top bun and toppings would jump upward and float in the air. The meat in the middle of the burger smelled delicious! The nearby kobolds were attracted by the smell and would approach the burger. Then, as soon as a kobold got to the center of the burger, the upper part fell down with lightning speed and trapped the kobold inside it. About half an hour later, the upper part would rise into the air again and there would be nothing left of the kobold but some bones.
Thereafter the burger would spin around a bit, the bones would fly out, and the meat in the center would look even more delicious than before!
Good thing I hadn't gone toward a burger myself, though I'd been close to trying. They were delicious, but deadly, traps. Even after I knew it was a trap, I still wanted to taste one of the burgers! The longer I watched them, the hungrier I became. That might have been why the kobolds still walked right into their trap, even after seeing other kobolds being eaten. They probably all thought they would fare better than the kobolds who had gone before, and that they could succeed at getting the burger meat. Either that, or the smell had some sort of hypnotic effect that caused them to disregard the danger.
I also couldn't wait much longer and wanted to taste it, so I sent some of my clones towards the burgers, trying to get some meat from the center before the trap went down.
I had no luck. The trap was far more effective than I had thought. I told my clones to only get a part of the meat from the border of the burger, but somehow they didn't listen to me! They always moved right into the center and tried to taste the meat for themselves... Then, before they could even do anything, the upper part would smash them to bits.
Unlike with the kobolds, the burgers opened up right after smashing a shadow clone. They were only shadow after all, and disappeared as soon as they were killed.
That was interesting indeed. I wondered where the burgers had even come from. I had been at this oasis for four months, and before today there had been no sign of them. And it wasnt as if there was only one; I could see hundreds of the burgers. I came to the conclusion that they had to have something to do with Gefion's arrival. Maybe they were her pets or something. The only problem with this theory was that Gefion was nowhere to be found.
After a few hours, the burgers had entirely surrounded the oasis and I was becoming a bit scared. It was almost like they wanted to block my way out. Time for me to go, I thought. I didn't want to end up as burger food. I had trained my ability to fly quite well over the last few months, so I was able to launch into flight from a standing position.
As soon as I was in the air, however, the upper parts of the burgers which were already aloft flew toward me at high speed like incredibly dangerous Frisbees.
They spun so quickly that each one generated a blade of air around itself. I could feel the power of the wind from several meters away, and I had no doubt the edge would slice me in half if it hit me.
I realized then that I could see someone in the distance, floating in midair. It was a woman, and she seemed to be controlling all the burgers. It had to be Gefion!
After four months, she had finally appeared, and in the worst possible way. I expected her to be strong and had prepared for that, but I didn't expect her to bring thousands of humongous burgers, blocking my way and launching with deadly attacks from every direction! She was so far away that I could barely see her, and approaching her was almost impossible because the burgers surrounded her like a wall.
I had been careless. Lazing there in the oasis for months, not doing much except a little training, while Gefion had probably spent the whole time observing me and preparing this attack. I hadn't even noticed her, off in the far distance. She must have used some ability to see me from far away, or maybe she summoned some animal to observe me like she had summoned the big burgers.
But there was not much point in thinking about that. First, I had to think of some way to escape this situation. There was no way I could beat Gefion from the middle of her trap. I had to lure the burgers away or let my shadow clones defeat them. The problem was that my shadow clones had no way to defeat them at the moment. They couldn't get close before the trap snapped shut, and there were too many burgers to defeat with ranged attacks. When my clones tried to distance themselves from one burger, another burger jumped over and snapped its top down to smash them. It was even worse in the air, because the upper burger parts flew a lot faster than my clones and sliced them apart like nothing.
This meant that my clones were being killed faster than I could summon them, so they couldn't help me get out of this situation. I myself could fly much faster than my clones, and still was barely able to dodge the burgers in the air. But it became harder every minute as they grew more and more numerous. The only way out seemed to be flying straight upwards. It turned into a race to the heavens, to see who could fly the highest.
A few hundred meters up, they suddenly stopped following me and began to float back down. Maybe they had lost interest in following me? Or maybe there was a limit on how far they could be from their lower halves. Either way, I had won the race and escaped the danger, at least for now.
When I looked down from this height, I was surprised. A huge swath of the desert had turned green! On the opposite side from where the burgers had appeared, the sand was disappearing and a lot of different plants were growing rapidly, turning the desert into a lush jungle. Observing Gefion a bit more, I could tell that she was the one who was responsible for the change. Talk about a green thumb!
The burgers surrounded her and cleared the kobolds from her path, so Gefion didn't need to care about them and could concentrate on creating plants and turning the desert green.
Gefion wasn't even looking for me. It almost seemed like she didn't notice me.... She only cared about her plants.
This made me feel rather silly. I had barely escaped the mortal danger of her burger minions, and she didn't even notice me? Hadn't Suijin told her about me, and asked her to take revenge?
I would have liked to ask her, but it seemed impossible to approach her with all those burgers around.
The burgers all moved towards the desert, leaving the lush expanse of plants Gefion had created empty of both burgers and kobolds. It seemed to be a safe place to go, so I did.
The oasis was in the middle of the desert, which meant that she had turned half of the desert into a field of plants in less than five months. It also meant that I still had more than four months left to challenge her before she finished revitalizing the desert and left.
My clones could have caught kobolds with which to feed the burgers. It took a burger around half an hour after catching a kobold to open its trap again, so reaching her this way would have been easy. But only finding a way to reach her wouldn't be enough. She was able to summon thousands of powerful creatures, so finding a way to defeat them was my first priority. I needed to become much stronger than the burgers in order to have a chance to beat her in a fair challenge. My goal was that one of my shadow clones could defeat one burger in a duel. The idea being that, if my summons were stronger than hers, I also had good chance at winning when I challenged her.
The bottom parts of the burgers could jump quite far but they were not dangerous. The jumping was predictable and fairly slow. They also only jumped to follow Gefion and never attacked anything. Their main purpose was to lure in enemies so the top part could do the rest. This meant I had to focus only on fighting the upper part. It could fly at high speeds in any direction up to about a hundred meters away from the base. The cyclone edge created by its rotation was as sharp as a sword, and seemed to be able to cut through anything. The underside was quite soft and mostly used to trap any prey so it couldn't flee after the lower part lured it in.
After watching my clones fight them for a few days, I still wasn't able to find a weakness. The upper burger parts flew fast enough that my clones weren't able to dodge them most of the time, and a single hit with the edge killed a clone. A few times a clone was able to hit the bottom of a part, but then the clone would wind up with a limb trapped in the burger's dough, unable to get free, which meant attacking from the bottom was a bad idea.
Even distance attacks with aura balls had no effect. Their edges were sharp enough to cut the aura balls in two! This meant that my only choice was to attack them from above.
The problem was, they protected each other and were still a lot faster than my clones. Even four months of speed training for my clones and myself wouldn't be enough to match their speed. Because that was my time limit, I had to think of something else.
I came up with the idea of kicking my clones. Well, my clones had to do some teamwork and kick each other into the air. It was not as good as I had thought at first, because the kicks were as likely to kill the clones as to launch them, and the speed after being kicked was mostly slower than the speed at which they could fly. I kept at it, mostly because I couldn't think of anything else and enduring the kicks also improved the clones defenses quite a bit.
After three weeks of training, there was already a lot of improvement. The clones were now able to coordinate their movements, kicking off of one another and thus doubling their jumping speed and distance. This way, they were significantly faster than the whirling burger parts.
From time to time, a clone was able to hit a burger from above and managed to damage it. After another week, my clones could do this pretty accurately and even defeat some burgers with good teamwork. One clone jumped to another clone which kicked the first clone away, then the first clone kicked the upper burger part downward and the second killed it when it reached the ground. After that, the remaining part of the burger was pretty much defenseless and I took a taste of it. It tasted sooo much better than the kobold meat I had been living on until then!
The first step was done; my clones could defeat the burgers in a two-on-one fight. Though in a one-on-one fight my clones were still hopelessly overmatched. With this strategy, a one-on-one fight would be impossible anyway. But two-on-two was possible, and the result was pretty much the same. For the next step, I let my clones train to kick off of each other in opposite directions at the same time, so they could both jump at a burger top simultaneously.
Like with the first step, in the beginning they failed miserably all day long. The only result was that both jumped to their death at once, but I could see slight improvements even by the end of the first day.
It took them another two weeks until they were finally able to kill the burgers in a two vs two fight with a success rate above ninety percent. While I watched my clones fighting I had not remained idle. I had learned to do a version of the same move by myself. I would instantly summon part of a shadow clone below my feet, which increased drastically my jumping speed so that I arrived almost instantly at another point within a radius of fifty meters. It took me a while to be able to calibrate my speed so I could arrive exactly where I wanted, but by the time my clones finished their training I was able to do it pretty accurately. I could even change direction in the air by summoning a new clone part and adding my momentum to with another jump.
I call this ability Teleport.

7-2: The fight vs GefionEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Gefion

After all this training, I felt confident again and decided to move on. I gathered enough shadow clones to kill all the burgers between me and Gefion, and made my approach.
"Who are you and what are you doing to my sweet burgers?" she asked me. I answered that I didn't want to kill all her burgers but I couldn't find another way to reach her and I wanted to challenge her to a duel as part of my journey to become the strongest god in the universe. She agreed to the duel, under the condition that I stop killing her burgers.
And so the fight started. First, I wrapped myself in my aura to improve my defense and offense. Then I tested her defenses by charging at her to attack with a few light punches.
Just before I could hit her, a sinuous vine moved into the path of my attack, protecting her. Even worse, the tendrils of the plant instantly began to twine about my hand and wrist, trapping me. Another plant attacked me from behind as I attempted to free myself, but I escaped just in time using my new teleport ability.
This caught Gefion by surprised. Now I was behind her, and used my Whirling Foot attack. Another plant appeared out of nowhere and blocked the attack, but because my Whirling Foot skill was much faster than my first punch, it couldn't catch me and I jumped back.
Then I created a lot of water around me, splashing it all over the plants that kept blocking me and freezing them as soon as they were covered. This slowed them down a lot, and opened up a path to hit Gefion.
Gefion dodged and jumped into the air while creating more plants to prevent me from flying. As I created more ice to fight off these plants, I also created more heat. I fought to contain the heat with my aura, but more and more began to slip through the containing field. The ice melted quite fast while the air became hotter and hotter and the heat harder to control. So I let go of the concentrated heat and repeatedly teleported as fast and as far as I could. When I was a few hundred meters away and looked back, I saw that the sudden release of the compressed heat had caused a huge blast and destroyed most of the plants. Even Gefion was caught up in this blast and couldn't totally defend against it.
While the plants were burning and Gefion was staggered, I teleported to her and hit her with a frenzied combination of punching and kicking skills which knocked her out.
When Gefion regained consciousness, she couldn't believe how fast the fight had ended; it utterly surprised her. She had greatly underestimated me. She usually depended on her plants to protect her and, until then, nobody on Gaia had been able to even come near her. She mentioned that her teacher, Hathor, would probably be even stronger than her. Hathor had taught her everything she knew and could do much more. Hathor could create powerful trees which wouldn't be affected by my freezing power and would have easily blocked the blast with which I'd defeated Gefion.
But she didn't live on Gaia. When I asked Gefion where Hathor lived, she answered simply, "On the planet 'Reality'." However, that turned out to be in an entirely different solar system; impossible for Gefion to reach. Centuries ago, Hathor had brought her to the planet Gaia to help with the plant life, and there Gefion had stayed.
She'd also met Suijin here. Suijin was quite troublesome from time to time, but she still loved him, she said. His assignment was to create water for this planet to make it possible for other beings to live here. Sometimes he did a good job, but sometimes he overused his ability and didn't pay attention to his surroundings. This resulted in the opposite of his original task and was how the desert had been created.
After finding out that Suijin had created this desert, she had been furious with him and had ordered him to stay at home until she made his desert green again with her plants. It was a difficult job, and it took a lot longer for her plants to make an area this big green again than it had taken for Suijin to create the desert in the first place.
I then apologized to her for destroying some of her plants in the fight, and she said it was no trouble. Compared to reclaiming Suijin's huge desert, the few dozen plants I'd ruined were nothing.
I told her that I was really curious about how she could create plants and asked her to teach me how to do it. I even promised to help her finish making the desert green again once I knew how to do it. She agreed to teach me while working on the desert, if I didn't bother her too much. When I asked what the deal was with her burgers, since they didn't have anything to do with plants, she became angry. Supposedly the burgers were meant to be some kind of man-eating plants. They were also the only plants that could live without sinking roots into the earth, so they were the only ones that could follow her around. "Aren't they cute?" she said.
I spent weeks watching her create plants, and she explained to me how she did it as we systematically moved through the remaining desert. It was not easy to do. She was able to use the water deep below the sand to turn sand into soil, then imbue life into the earth to create a plant.
Two months later, the whole desert had disappeared and everything was green again. Although her work was done, I hadn't been able to help at all. I had a grasp on how the ability worked, but I still couldn't do it right. My attempts were too slow and clumsy to be of any help; by the time I could create one feeble plant, she had already filled the area with foliage. Because Gefion wanted to go back to her husband after almost half a year, I let her go and told her I would manage the rest on my own. All I would need was practice.
I decided to stay on Gaia for a while longer, at least until I could create plants as well as Gefion. Then I would continue my journey to find the planet Reality and Hathor.

8-1: Finding HathorEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Hathor

Year 9034, June, Planet Reality

I had decided to stay on Gaia until I could create the plants as well as Gefion. It had taken nearly a year, but I made good use of my time.
After training my plant creating skills to perfection, I felt like it was time to find a way to Reality and returned to my space dimension device.
Gefion had told me that Reality was in a different Solar System. It was too far for her to reach, and she couldn't give me its exact position. Luckily my space dimension device had a sensor to find planets with water, designed to detect earthlike planets. That alone helped a lot, as I was able to skip most of the planets in my search for Reality.
There were only five earthlike planets within twenty light-years, and the odds were good that Reality was one of them. The space dimension device, humanity's greatest invention of all time, could even find wormholes and calculate the coordinates of their endpoints. While a distance of twenty light-years would have been next-to-impossible to reach at normal speed, by using the right wormholes the distance could be reduced by a factor of about one thousand.
Because there were five planets and I had no idea of which was the right one, and because the wormholes meant that no planet was really closer than any other, I used a die to pick a place to start. I rolled a three and went to the third, or central, planet. With the speed of my device, I was able to reach it in about a month.
After landing on this planet, I realized the difference in gravity compared to Gaia. It was only about half as strong, so I felt much lighter. I would have thought everything would be easier because of that, and that I would move much faster, but it was actually the other way around at first.
It was very different than the planets to which I had become accustomed, and it was hard even to run. When I let my steps get too big, I bounded into the air and it was easy to become unbalanced and fall down. With steps too small, I was slower than I'd been on Gaia.
I could have skipped the running and improved my flying skills, but I decided to stay here for a bit to grow accustomed to the difference in gravity. I didn't know whether this was the planet where Hathor lived, but it would have been bad if I had met her while I was still having trouble moving around. Repeatedly falling down during the fight would probably have reduced my chances to beat her.

Luckily, I quickly found water and some animals. The temperature was also nice, so it was a good place to stay and train a bit.
Because of the lower gravity on this planet, the plants and trees were a lot bigger than on Gaia. I really felt tiny. Even the animals were much bigger than me, some of them five meters tall. Though they were big compared to me, they were really weak, so I was able to defeat them easily.

Three days later, I was able to move much better in this new environment. By then, I was able to move quite a bit faster than I could on Gaia, so my lightness had finally kicked in! Then I decided search the planet and look for Hathor while improving my ability to fly.
While the plants and creatures on this planet were much bigger than others I knew, the planet itself was much smaller than Gaia. I was able to cover the whole planet in one week, but sadly there was no Hathor in sight, which meant I had picked the wrong planet.

This left four planets where Hathor could have been. I decided to try out the next nearest one, gathered some water and food, and started my flight.
Three weeks later, I reached the next planet. This planet was really cold. From my landing point I could only see mountains of ice, and it was probably around minus forty degrees. The gravity was only slightly higher than on Gaia, so I was able to move around fine, but the cold was not something I liked. There was also no food in sight, only ice.
I thought my chances of Hathor being on this planet were pretty slim, but I was there already so decided to start my search for Hathor right away. While unlikely, it was not impossible to find her there. The food provisions I had left were still enough for another 2 months, but my situation could become pretty dire if there wasn't any food on this planet and I stayed for too long.
This planet was much bigger than the last one. I could control my aura quite well at this time, so the cold wasn't much of a problem, but there were snow storms almost constantly. They drastically cut visibility, which slowed me down quite a bit.
Two weeks later, I had covered about half of the planet in my search. Still no sign of Hathor, but I finally found something green and not frozen! It was a small island. The temperature was about ten degrees, so not really warm but at least not frozen, and there were some plants and water. No sign of animals, so no meat, but some of the plants were safe to eat and didn't taste that bad. I stocked up on some more food and went on with my search.
After another ten days I had covered the whole planet and, as I'd feared, there was no sign of Hathor. Three planets left to go!
This time it took almost two months to reach the next planet with my space dimension device. I grew really bored and by the time I got there my food had almost run out. Good thing I had been able to fill up my provisions at least a bit on the last planet, or I might not have made it.
After landing, though, I felt quite lucky. This planet was full of life; nothing like the last one. I could somehow feel that Hathor was here. Not only Hathor, but other gods, too.
And I was right about that. It didn't take long for one of the other gods to find me. "Who are you!" he asked in a rather mean voice. "I'm just a small god in search of Hathor. Do you know where I can find her?" I answered.
"Such a lowly god as you will never reach my daughter! I won't allow it!" He punched and knocked me out before I even saw his fist coming. I was unconscious for hours before I woke up again.
He was pretty overwhelming. I didn't know his name yet, but I knew for sure that his power was leagues ahead of my own. Even after training for years, I wouldn't have been able to beat him. He said he was Hathor's father, so it stood to reason that he was much stronger than her.
At least I'd learned the feel of his power, and would be able to notice when he was nearby. I decided to flee immediately if I felt his power again while searching for Hathor. Only a few hours later, I saw a beautiful goddess: Hathor? But she was surrounded by another god and two goddesses. She seemed to be really popular with the other gods. She sang a hauntingly beautiful song and the other gods all fawned over her.
I could feel that all three of them were much stronger than I was. Yes, this was Reality. I had never before felt so weak; it was really something else. Hathor was probably the weakest of the lot, but I wasn't even sure if I could beat her yet and any other gods I would find here were likely to be way out of my league.
I decided to not approach her yet, and to train a bit more. There had to be something on Reality they all could have trained against to become so strong. I just had to find whatever it was, and began to look around a bit for some places to train myself.
After wandering around for a while, I found a massive tomb. Maybe the graves of some ancient gods? "Treasure awaits!" I thought to myself. Or not. The doors of the tomb opened into a cavernous tunnel which sloped gradually into the earth. It at least looked interesting, so I decided to explore a bit. Soon after, the tunnel forked repeatedly into countless different hallways.
If I were alone, it would have been quite easy to lose my way. It seemed to be a big labyrinth, but that posed no problem for me. I just summoned some shadow clones and split them up to search every possible route. I could hear the clones slightly muffled footfalls echoing back from every direction in the deathly stillness of the tomb.
After ruling out several pitfalls and dead ends, I set out again. I soon entered a huge, dome-shaped room at the junction of about a dozen hallways. As soon as I reached the center, all the doors suddenly closed. Hundreds of skeletons rose up from below the earth and sprang out of niches in the walls, fixed their hollow gazes upon me, and launched an attack!
It was not exactly unexpected. Skeletons fit right in with the huge tomb, but there were more than I'd imagined. Worse, they seemed to be almost invincible.
When I struck one down, within 5 seconds the bones would rattle and form up into another skeleton! Anywhere there were more skeletons together, they ripped out each others bones and threw them right at me. The skeletons on the other side caught them and threw them at me again.
So I was left in the center of this ambush, forced to dodge a crossfire of hundreds of bones thrown with supernatural strength. I could see and dodge them just fine, but it quickly drained my endurance.
They seemed to have an unlimited amount of bones and reappeared as soon as I struck them down, while all the doors where sealed and I had no way out. It was only a matter of time until I ran out of stamina if I couldnt think of something to do.
At first, I tried to punch a hole into the ground, but my punches were somehow deflected. Some strong magical power seemed to protect it. I had the same problem at the ceiling when I flew up there and tried to punch through it.
To buy some time, I summoned enough shadow clones to surround me and screen away all the skeletons from my refuge in the center of the room. My clones were strong enough to block the attacks of the undead aggressors, even if they couldnt really defeat them. I had enough stamina to last a few days like that, but sitting there in the midst of the battle with my water and food slowly running out was still a bad idea.
The only solution I had in mind was to completely incinerate the skeletons so the bones would turn to ash. They were able to rebuild themselves when I knocked the bones apart, but it was highly unlikely that the ash would revert to bones again.
Using a big explosion like I did when fighting Gefion seemed like a bad strategy because there was no way to shield myself from it, which meant I would have been caught up into the explosion. I somehow had to incinerate them with my aura balls. When I threw them at the skeletons, however, they hardly took any damage; so, I had to improve them.
The main problem was that an aura ball was focused at the point of impact. To incinerate a skeleton, I had to surround the whole skeleton and intensify the heat until it stuck to the bones. The bones were hardly flammable, so that was hard to do.
I sat down and deeply concentrated on the air surrounding me, the earth below me, my aura balls, the air, and the water I could create from the air. The air was quite dusty and dry, so the water I could extract from it was really limited. The air itself was also limited, and the more fire I created, the more quickly the oxygen disappeared, which meant that randomly creating aura balls would have been a really bad idea.
In my mind, I tried to combine all four elements into one. Earth to change the composition of the bones and make them more combustible, Fire to burn the bones, Air to feed the flames. Water was not that useful for my strategy, but the more water I extracted from the air the easier the bones would burn. Now, with my mind focused, I tried it out on one skeleton. It was a total failure.
My efforts with Earth somehow made the bones even more resistant to fire, and I wasn't even able to ignite them in the first place. But then it came to mind that I had learned how to create plants not that long ago. Plants were the perfect solution for my problems, so I created them. I turned the stones into sand which I turned into earth, then extracted the water from the air to make them grow. The plants themselves returned moisture to the air, and they were easy to burn after I dried them out.
Then I tried it again and surrounded a skeleton with a plant, covered up every bone with dried plant matter, and fired an aura ball at it. I focused the air to closely surround the plants and covered that with my aura to increase the heat and refocus it inward on the bones. With that, the heat surrounding the bones went up to a few thousand degrees and after a short time, the bones really turned into ash!
However, it took a few hours for one skeleton, and there were a few hundred of them. Because I didn't want stay for months in this tomb, I tried to speed up the process with the help of my shadow clones. It wasnt easy, but when about ten shadow clones worked together, they were able to burn one skeleton into ash.
Even with the help of my clones, it took me a total of five days to incinerate all of the skeletons. I couldn't burn them all at once, because there wasn't enough air available. After reducing a few to ash, I had to create enough plants to return the oxygen to the air which was removed by the fire. Normally it would have taken a lot longer, but I managed to increase the plants effectiveness a lot with my godly aura, so five days to burn down hundreds of skeletons in this room was actually really fast.
After all skeletons were gone, the doors finally opened again, and I was free to advance or go back to the entrance. I was dirty, drained, and hungry, so I decided to go back to the entrance and rest for a while.
Three days later, I had recovered completely and already felt quite a bit more powerful than I had before my first foray. With the experience gained in this tomb, I had managed to increase my understanding of the elements by a lot and increase the effectiveness of all my elemental powers. I searched for Hathor again and this time I was much luckier than I had been the last time. She was alone and no other gods were in sight! I decided to take the chance and challenge her before the other gods returned. This might be my only chance for a while.

8-2: Fighting HathorEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Hathor

With a "Hello, I'm a traveling god in search of other gods to challenge to duels to improve my own fighting ability. I want to challenge you, do you accept?" I approached her. She answered with "My father would never allow that, but you are lucky that he is currently off-Planet. I feel bored now, so why not? I accept your challenge!"
And so the fight started.
Like Gefion had said, Hathor could do everything she could do and more, only better. She hadnt joked about that. In the blink of an eye, a big tree appeared as if from nowhere! The tree was quite lively, nothing like the trees I had known before. This one started to lash out at me with its branches almost as soon as it appeared. The branches were stout, fast, and wickedly pointed, and there were a lot of them!
I tried to summon shadow clones and destroy the branches with aura balls, but the branches seemed to know where I would summon my clones even before I created them. Each clone was destroyed with a single stab!
By myself, I was still faster than the branches and could dodge them without a problem, but it was hard to counterattack. While I was busy with this tree, Hathor already created two more!
I chose to fly upwards as fast as I could. It was my best option. Even though Hathor made the trees really big, their height was not limitless and I was soon out of their reach. In the time I took to get out of reach of the trees, Hathor had surrounded herself with a total of eight trees, and I couldn't even see her because of all the branches which bent to cover her.
Out of reach, I thought to summon my shadow clones and fire volleys of aura balls to break through her branch defense, but to no avail. I somehow couldn't create any shadow clones. Something must have been blocking my ability to create them.
Useless again. Not that I expected it to be different. Maybe "physics" of this universe would not allow me use shadow clones when fighting other gods?
While training at the tomb, I was able to focus my fire effectively to incinerate the skeletons; that skill proved useful in this fight. And because the branches were quite flammable, I was able to burn them without a problem. But unlike the skeletons, the trees were constantly growing. They grew faster than I was able to burn them down, even with my focused fire.
But it was not like I had to burn them all down. I only had to create a path in the center to be able to reach Hathor, and my fire had to block the attacking branches from the outside. That I was able to do, but the fire had the side effect of superheating the path to Hathor. More than a hundred degrees C. Even with my auras, I wouldn't have lasted long in that heat.
But I was not the only one who had a problem with the heat. The fire reached Hathor, and her tree barrier had become a fiery cage while I was still up in the air deciding how to reach her.
That became my strategy: keep the fight at a distance, and just fire more aura balls to increase the heat. I had no trouble floating in the air, while it would become more troublesome for her to stay in place the longer the fight lasted.
I was right. Soon after, Hathor stopped creating trees and began moving them away to open a path. As the trees moved out of her way, the fire also moved with them, so she was able to escape the flames.
Unfortunately for her, I waited at the end of her escape path: barely injured and full of energy, ready to fight. Hathor, on the other hand, was already breathing heavily and had depleted a lot of her stamina. When I started my next attack, she said "Stop, I give up! You won the fight, please stop the fire!"
I didn't really want to kill her. A victory was enough for me, so I accepted her plea.
Then I started to realize the level of destruction I had caused. Even worse, while it was easy to create all this fire, now it had spread out of control and it was not so easy to extinguish. Creating water was not enough, it vaporized faster than I could create it.
The only solution I had in mind was to call my asteroid friends to create stones big enough to surround and extinguish the fire. But before I even started to summon the stones, a flood of water, an entire river, suddenly rained down on everything and extinguished all the fire in a matter of seconds.
Hathor's father was back! And more furious than I had ever seen anyone in my life.
After a split second, I flew away as fast as I could. Not looking back, I fled in a panic: ten minutes, twenty minutes, and then forty! After forty minutes, I was hundreds of kilometers away and thoroughly winded. When I looked around, I couldn't see her father anywhere, so I was pretty sure that I lost him.
That was really scary. I was sure he would have killed me if I fled even a second later. He was not someone I stood a chance against yet. The gap between his power and mine was probably greater than the difference between a planet and a star. I had begun to be able to sense the strength of my opponents by then and I was pretty sure that the other gods I had seen on this planet were weaker than him, so he certainly wasn't my next target.
When Id seen the other gods gathered around Hathor, one of them was fishing on a river. From my own estimation, he was the second-weakest on this planet after Hathor, so I set him as my next target.
But not yet. First, I had to become stronger. I had the feeling that I could not win a fight against him yet. I also wanted to work out Hathor's ability to create trees first. It was too risky to go back for now, but I had seen clearly what she was doing in our fight. It had seemed like nothing more than a more powerful version of my ability to create plants. I tried to collect my thoughts about that while trying to copy her ability.

9-1: Zombies in the TombEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Pontus

Year 9035, January, Planet Reality

Creating trees was not as easy as I had thought it would be. While the basic procedure is the same as creating plants, trees are much sturdier and take much longer to grow. Hathor had been able to make giant Oaks spring full-grown from the ground, but I couldnt even make a tiny Pine without it shattering from the strain and showering me with sap. The wood was strong, but that also made it too inflexible to shape; maybe there was more to it than just making bigger plants, after all. After spending about two weeks trying to copy her skill, the most I was able to make were some small bushes. Not a bad start, but I really couldnt call them trees.
I decided to take a break from creating and to continue exploring the tomb where I had left off after defeating the skeletons. This time, I prepared a bit better and brought more water and food with me. Just before I entered the room, I had the feeling that something was wrong. While I was sure it was the same room, it looked different than it had when I'd left it a few months ago. For one thing, there was no trace of the ash from the burned skeletons. It almost looked as if I was never there.
Maybe the creator of this tomb had rebuilt the trap? To test it out, I first sent a few of my shadow clones to the room and waited a couple minutes to see if the trap would activate. Nothing happened. I had the feeling that it somehow recognized that my clones were not living beings, which resulted in not activating the trap. I may have been overthinking this a bit, but I didn't want to risk being trapped for almost a week again. I decided to not enter the room for now, and see if I could find another way around it.
Easier said than done. After searching for more than an hour with some of my shadow clones, I was quite sure that the only way to continue was to go through this room. I also tried to destroy some walls and make my own path, but it seemed like the whole tomb was magically protected. The protection was really strong, and I wasn't able to destroy even one wall. The god who built this tomb must have been quite a lot stronger than me.
I approached the big room again, and I could see the open door on the other side. "This is the time to test if my teleporting skills will work," I thought to myself.
Because my teleporting skill could not go through matter, it was risky to teleport to areas with obstacles. I had to be faster than the door closing and stop as soon as I was behind the door, because I couldn't see anything behind it. Otherwise I risked slamming into the closed door, or whatever lay behind it, at bone-shattering speed. The last time I had entered the room, the door had closed really fast. It had appeared as if by magic. Would I prove even faster?
I went back about 200 meters through some other rooms and doors to set up around twenty shadow clones along the way. My idea was to gain speed every time one shadow clone teleports me to the next one, sort of like the Navy's "railguns" back on Earth. I tested the setup, and after about twenty small teleports from clone to clone I reached my maximum speed. To cushion my impact after I was through the door, I added another twenty shadow clones on the other side. I also surrounded myself with a dense aura and made a thick armor out of compressed earth. It reduced my speed a bit, but it was better to protect myself in case something happened than to go faster. It was still fast enough to cross the 100-meter room within a few milliseconds.
Then I started my teleporting maneuver, and it went just as planned! I had made it through the big room and softened my stop after the teleport just enough to not get hurt at all. Then I looked back, and saw that the door was closed. That was when I realized that I might have made a grave mistake. I might have saved a few days in fighting the skeletons, but with the big room being the only way to go out and the unbreakable door securely shut, how the hell was I supposed to get out again?
Well, there was no point in worrying too much about it. While it was the only way to connect to the entry I had used, that didn't mean I had used the only entry. The trap room had also been completely reset - and the door opened - between the first time I left the tomb and now. So chances were that the door would open again eventually.
After going further for an hour, I came to another big room. I felt fairly sure it was another trap. I could have used the same teleport maneuver as before, but I had come here to train. I would get very little training done if I ran all the time, so I entered the room. Just as I'd thought, the doors slammed shut and I was once again trapped.
This room didn't have skeletons. Instead, zombies appeared from the earth below! They were ugly and had the rancid smell of rotting flesh. When I sent some clones to fight them, the clones died as soon as they touched the zombies! They must have been extremely poisonous, which meant that touching them would have been a bad idea. Then I tried to fight them with my concentrated aura to set them aflame, similar to how I'd fought the skeletons. Zombies should be weak to fire, so killing them shouldn't be that hard. At least, I thought it would work that way.
The zombies here, however, simply absorbed the fire and then breathed out gouts of burning, poisonous gas! Even worse, the zombie on which I tried out my aura ball set the zombies around it aflame. Shortly after that, I had a full room of fire-breathing zombies whose fire killed my shadow clones as soon as it touched them. I wasn't even sure if the fire or the poison killed them, but I was sure that I didnt want to come into contact with either. All I had done by setting them on fire was to extend their attack range from about 1 meter to 4. Their breath also consumed the air in the room, and what air was left quickly became concentrated poison gas.
Since I had arrived on Gaia more than 30 years ago, I'd been in really bad situations numerous times, so I could find a way out of this one, I said to myself. Maybe this was a bit worse than my average situation, but I was still a god, and it was a good chance to build a resistance to poison! I just had to find some way to protect myself until my shadow clones became strong enough to defeat the zombies.
The whole tomb was magically protected. Even with all my power, I was unable to put a dent in the walls. So I thought, "If some other god could do something like that, why shouldn't I be able to create a similar wall?" In fact, why not create an even stronger barrier? Sooner or later, I had to defeat the god or the goddess who had created the barriers around the tomb, so it was only natural to aim for something better. But first it had to be strong enough to block out the zombies. And I didnt have much time! The air was becoming more and more toxic the longer I stayed in this room. It also became hotter, and the fire removed a lot of the oxygen.
Summoning stones still worked, so I summoned quite a few of them and started to build my barrier with them. Because zombies appeared from below the earth, I made the barrier in the air, and supported it with some stone pillars. This way, I hoped to prevent the zombies from simply appearing inside the barrier. Soon after, I had a room made out of stone walls in the center of the bigger room, held up at each corner by one of four pillars. While their fiery breath couldn't reach me inside, my chamber wasnt airtight and I had no doubt the zombies were strong enough to destroy the pillars. This meant I had to constantly rebuild them. Rebuilding them was easy to do, but it required constant attention.
But because the poisonous air was the bigger problem, I tried to reinforce the walls with some ice. As I made the water into ice, it would swell up and seal the gaps in my little room. However, that was not so easy to do. To create ice, I had to turn my dwindling supply of air into water, and then remove all the heat while the zombies constantly spewed flame. Because the flames would have melted any ice on the outside, it had to be inside the walls.
Soon enough, I managed to pull off my two layer barrier. The stones blocked the fire while the ice blocked the poison gas. I was able to contain the heat within my aura. My aura got hotter while the air became colder, and the moisture turned into ice. This kind of drained my stamina, but I was sure to last longer than the oxygen in the zombie filled room. The fire would slowly remove all the oxygen in the big room, while I created my own air in my insulated bunker.
And I was right about that.
About half an hour later, the burning zombies began to sputter out. Sitting in my barrier room, I was unable to see the zombies outside. I was still able to summon clones outside my barrier, though, so it was easy for me to tell when the fires stopped because they no longer died instantly after going out. Now that the fire was gone, I sent out more of my shadow clones to try to defeat the zombies and tried to come up with ideas on how to improve my barrier. Of course, I still couldn't call it a proper barrier if even zombies could break it. Also, because of the ice, it was fairly weak against fire.
Before this, I had always used my aura to surround myself and increase my own power and defense. Now I tried to surround my icy stone barrier with my aura. I was able to take heat into my aura when I created ice, so I wanted to try to infuse the barrier with my aura. I started by creating a small stone inside my room, to try this out in a smaller version first. I focused on creating a separate aura centered on the rock, and drew the ambient heat into it. It was hard to do, and the rock quickly grew so hot that it almost exploded. Luckily, I cut the aura off before it came to that.
Just surrounding a barrier with my aura wouldn't work. My aura took in too much heat too fast, which actually made it less stable than it had been before. Then I tried adding an insulating layer of air between the stone, the ice, and my aura. I somehow had intuition that this would work. The small test stone would rest in the center, surrounded with ice. Then the air surrounding that would work as an exchange between the ice and the aura. The aura could take in heat from the air, while the air took heat from the ice. The ice would become colder while the aura would become hotter, but at a rate that wouldnt make the stone explode.
A few hours later I had a good idea of how I wanted to do it, but still failed miserably. The zombies really disturbed my concentration. My shadow clones had been able to defeat about twenty zombies in the meantime, but more than a hundred new ones had appeared since then. That meant my situation had become even worse. But my clones had become a lot more resistant to their poison already. They didn't die as soon as they were touched by the zombies anymore, and could take a few hits now. They still only lasted about 10 seconds after getting poisoned, but that was an exponential improvement and I felt that my standing here would continue to improve.
About half a day later, I was finally able create a stable mini-barrier inside the room, and moved on to try it out with one of the pillars supporting my little haven. I really wanted the zombies to stop destroying them, already! When I surrounded one pillar with my aura, it really worked! The next zombie who tried to break the pillar wasn't able to destroy it anymore. My aura didn't totally reflect his punch, but it stopped it without being broken at least. The aura and the wind altered the direction of the punch, and the ice in the next layer caused it to glance harmlessly aside.
The bad thing was that the barrier was hard to maintain and drained my stamina rapidly. Spreading it to the whole room or all four pillars at once would have left me completely drained in less than a day. So I added another, thicker pillar at the center of the others, and surrounded it with my new barrier while I let the zombies destroy the outer pillars. It was risky, because if they did destroy the center pillar now, the room above would collapse. But I had confidence in my barrier.
Two days later, I was still in my room improving my barrier, but my shadow clones were finally able to defeat zombies more quickly than the new ones appeared. My clones had also become really resistant to their poison. About one third of them didn't even weaken anymore after being poisoned, and most others would last at least half an hour.
My barrier was also considerably stronger, and I was able to reduce the stamina drain of maintaining it. Instead of just changing the direction of incoming attacks slightly to make them slip away on the next ice layer, it now changed the direction of an attack by a whole 180 degrees to counter the attack itself. I called it my Reflection Barrier; a very useful skill. It still was slow to create, so it would have been hard to use in a fight against a god, but I was sure to improve that soon.
Then I felt it was time for an all-out attack, and summoned as many clones at once as I could. I had been in my small barrier-like room long enough, and I wanted to go out already. To open the doors again, I had to defeat all the zombies at once, and my clones were able to defeat them faster now. Unlike the skeletons, these zombies stayed down once they'd taken enough damage. The clones could easily keep the zombies away from my room, so I stopped maintaining my barrier to be able to create more clones. Shortly after that, all the zombies were gone, and the doors opened up again!
Then I had two choices: go back to the other room, hoping it had opened up again during the few days since I was there, or press onward and try to find another way out of the tomb. Because my stamina was thoroughly drained and I wanted to leave right away, I decided on the first option. At worst, the door to the skeleton room would be still closed and the zombies would have appeared again in this room when I came back. At best, the door would be open and so would the way to out of the tomb. Going further into the tomb could have led to anything, even other trap rooms with stronger monsters.
Because of my unique bond with my shadow clones, I had personally become somewhat resistant to the poison, but I still didn't want to risk coming into contact with the poisoned air. So I prepared myself and some clones to teleport me to the door, then destroyed my room and teleported back as fast as I could. When I reached the door to the skeleton room, I was lucky! The door was open again. The way to the outside was free now, so I launched myself back through that room, then went outside again and recovered my strength for a few days.
I thought my new reflection barrier might be useful in a fight versus a god, if I could just improve the time I needed to create it. So I spent another two weeks improving it until I could create it within a few seconds.
Then I felt prepared and set out in search of my next target.

9-2: Pontus and ???Edit

Prerequisite: Defeat Pontus

When I went to where I had first seen the fishing god, he wasn't there, but luckily there was also no sight of Hathor's father. A few hours later, I finally found him on the shores of a vast sea and challenged him to a fight. He accepted, but pointed out to the sea: "I want to fight there," he said. I wasn't really prepared for a fight in the water, but I agreed nevertheless. It also didn't mean I had to fight in the sea, I could also stay in the air. My flying skills were quite good by that point, so it shouldn't have been too hard to stay in the air for the whole fight.
Then I flew out to sea, to where he had pointed, while floating in the air. As soon as the fight started, hundreds of fish started to attack me! They appeared so fast, I didn't see where they'd come from. They looked like swordfish and hammerheads. I still could dodge them, but they blocked the way to the god I was fighting, so it was hard to reach him.
Then I realized that I hadn't even asked his name yet.
After observing the fish a bit more, I could see them jump out of the water. They were very fast, almost as fast as my teleport skill. While the swordfish attacked me in a straight line, the hammerheads came from the sides. They tried to hit me while I was dodging the swordfish.
It still took me about three seconds to create my barrier, which made it too slow to use while dodging my aquatic assailants. The barrier also had another weakness: Gravity. Casting it in midair would have made it fall down into the water shortly after. But then I had an idea how I could still use it. I flew upwards until I was out of the reach of the leaping fish, then created my barrier. It fell down and I followed, hiding behind my barrier, which prevented the fish from attacking me. But although it screened me from their attacks, the barrier was slow to descend and the god moved away easily. Also, as soon as the barrier was in the water, the fish renewed their attacks.
Unless I could control the path of my barrier or make it fall down faster, I would have reach the other god. It also required a lot of my stamina.
Then I tried calling some asteroids to rain down on the fish. That was a lot easier for me, and I could call a lot of them. Soon I found out that it was really ineffective. The hammerheads liked to play baseball with the rocks and swatted them back while the swordfish just pierced through them like paper.
I experimented with firing aura balls at them, but they just countered with globes of water. They threw a lot more water balls at once than I was able to fire aura balls, but water attacks were no problem for me. I had learned how to create and control water quite a bit myself, and I was also able to turn them into ice while generating heat for my aura balls.
So I just waited in the air for their incoming water balls and extracted the heat, turning them into ice while increasing the power of my aura balls. I formed the ice into thousands of jagged shards and threw them back at the fish. Just before my frozen fusillade pierced the sea creatures, the god suddenly appeared and blocked my attack with his body...
He said, "Stop! Please don't kill them. I will give up."
That was kind of unexpected and also too easy for me. But although it didn't really feel like a victory for me, I agreed and stopped my attacks. He had probably underestimated me and overestimated his fish.
I then heard a female voice laughing from behind me. "Ha ha ha, Pontus, you are as weak as ever. Can't even block such low-level attacks without getting hurt. You are the shame of our family! I will show you how it is done."
Then the goddess shouted, while pointing at me, "Hey, you. I will stand here for one hour without doing anything. Attack me however you want. If you can't beat me within an hour, I will knock you out! I'm pretty sure I won't even feel your attacks, so you should just prepare to be knocked out."
A fight against the next god was kind of unexpected. She was really rude and totally confident in her strength. I couldn't really estimate her power compared to mine, but she sure looked much weaker than Hathor's father. I wanted to fight her anyway, and I probably wouldn't have gotten a better chance to beat her anytime soon. I accepted the fact that I wouldn't have much time, and took a moment to prepare myself. I also wanted to show her that I'm far from weak. Attacking her for one whole hour without her doing anything... She must have thought me as insignificant.
To test her out, I first attacked her with the same ice arrows I'd used to defeat Pontus. As they hit her, they only shattered and fell harmlessly away. But that was what I expected. Otherwise, she wouldn't have talked like that.
Then I prepared my aura, concentrated a lot of power into a big aura ball, and fired it at her. It somehow just dissipated into the air like I'd never fired it... After that I went back a bit, prepared some clones to teleport at her with full speed to throw my best punch at her. And that really hurt. Not her but my fist. It was even worse than punching the barriers at the tomb. Never before had I ever experienced such a strong defense, even when I'd fought Itztli. The goddess just yawned while I had trouble bearing the pain in my shattered hand.
Now I knew she hadn't underestimated me or overestimated herself. It was more the other way around. It seemed to me that her defense was completely impenetrable. But it was too soon to give up; I still had some time left.
When I was fighting Pontus, I'd created my new barrier and he had simply dodged. The goddess said she wouldn't move away, so I flew high into the air above her and created my new barrier again. This time, I went up a lot further so the barrier could gain more momentum as it fell. I also summoned a lot of asteroids to let them rain down on the goddess. I took aim and sent the big barrier down to hit the goddess with full power.
And the barrier reflected... itself. As soon as it touched the goddess, it sprang back at me, and I barely dodged it! She didn't even take any damage from it. The asteroids I summoned to rain down on her made a gigantic crater surrounding her. Everything around her took damage, but she was unscathed.
I tried a few other things to damage her, but the hour was over sooner than I'd anticipated. When I woke up hours later, I didn't even remember what she'd done.
"You shouldn't have accepted my sister's challenge," said Pontus, who was sitting beside me. "You can't defeat Diana. She gains power from the nearby tomb. As long as she gains power from it, you won't be able to even damage her."
That reminded me of the barrier-like walls in the tomb. I hadn't been able to even damage them. If she gained power from the tomb, my next goal was clear, I said to myself. I'd already fought quite a lot enemies in the tomb, and now my task was to destroy the tomb itself! It appeared to be the only way to defeat Diana.
When I asked Pontus why he told me how to defeat his sister, he answered that he didn't like her attitude. She was always stronger than him and talked down to him. If I could teach her a lesson, it might change her attitude a bit.
Pontus was quite a nice god. He really liked fish, and he created them all the time. He could form his divine power into the appearance of fish and let them free. Because they would die within a day if they were not in the water and did not have plants to eat, he was also able to create water and plants and gave it to the fishes. But he liked to form fishes much better because they have their own soul. They could move by themselves and swim in the water. Watching them really calmed him down. Most times, he just traded some of his divine power for plants from Hathor, so he didn't need to spend time creating them.
Because I was interested in creating fish myself, I asked him to teach me, and he happily agreed.
A few weeks later, I was able to create my own fish! It was a great feeling to create a new life. My shadow clones were not really a real life form; they were more a part of me. Even the plants and stunted trees I'd been able to create didn't really act on their own. So that was really the first time to create a new life for me. At least, if I didn't count imbuing clones with my consciousness during my rebirths.
Then I said goodbye to him and went on with my journey. Onward to the tomb once more!

10-1: Time to start anewEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Diana

Year 9037, January, Planet Reality

I went back to the tomb and my first step was to create my own entry by smashing in one wall on the outside of the tomb.
When I had fought Diana, I tried a lot to damage her and nothing worked, even though I easily defeated the other gods before her. For me at that time, the walls of the tomb had similar durability. Both, her defence and the walls were impenetrable. But walls couldn't move or attack me. So I had all the time I needed to increase my power to destroy them. I summoned enough clones to surround the whole tomb. That made me notice how big this tomb was. I had to use almost ten thousand clones to surround it.
Then I started with my training. Every clone punched the walls at once. They punched and punched and punched... I also punched at it myself for a while, but it had not taken long until my fist hurt enough for me to take a break. I still had enough stamina to summon more clones, so I just did that and let them train their aura.
I had them focus their aura just around their fists to increase the power output, and to reduce or even negate the impact on their fists. I had thought the idea of the training was good and I would have smashed the walls eventually; but almost a month later, I still continued the training and not one clone was able to even scratch the walls. They still seemed to be as impenetrable as they were at the start and I started to think that my training had no effect at all.
Then I decided to take a break for a few days to think of new ideas about what I could do to improve my destructive power. My first idea was to create a barrier myself and let my clones punch it, so they were not bound to the side of the tomb and I could have summoned more. But a barrier that big would have drained my stamina too fast and the training probably wouldn't work in the first place. However, I still thought it was a good idea to use my own barrier to train it at the same time and to make it stronger than the walls of the tomb.
When I continued my training again, I changed it a bit and let three clones work together from then on. One clone concentrated his aura to his fist and prepared for the punch. Thereafter other clones helped him to teleport and gain speed to increase the momentum of the punch. Like I feared, that didn't even scratch the walls and the clones died instantly from the impact. This meant the punch was still too weak to break the wall, and even too strong for the aura and the clones to handle the impact. The first goal was now to increase the defensive aura around the fists to handle the impact. In the meanwhile, I set up my own barrier, big enough to surround myself. With the same setup, I let my clones try to break my own barrier. Because my own barrier reflected their punches, they took even more damage from the impact and had no chance to survive at all.
About three weeks later, to my surprise, one clone managed to crack it. My own barrier! That was quite a shock for me. Not the wall of the tomb, but my own barrier broke down first. The walls on the tomb were still without any harm. Most of the clones still died on the impact on the walls. This time, the progress of my training was really slow. I almost felt like I didn't progress at all. When I trained and prepared to fight the other gods, I could feel my power increasing much faster, and the goal to defeat the next god was always within reach. This time, however, I felt like I was really far away from defeating Diana. The gap in power was still enormous. I was unsure if I would stand a chance against her even after years of training if it continued like this. But I couldn't think of any other way to increase my destructive power, so I just went on with my training.
A whole three months later, I finally managed to put a small crack into one of the tomb walls! But soon after, that proved to be a bad mistake. It seems like Diana felt that crack and she appeared before me out of nowhere. I don't remember much about this second meeting; just that she was really angry and threw a punch at me with her full power.
Her punch was really destructive, my body couldn't handle it. I somehow managed to stay conscious, but I knew it was the end of me. This body wouldn't have lasted another minute. Luckily, I still had the power to rebirth and I just enough time to create a perfect copy clone of myself and put my soul into it. Diana's punch also threw me far away, so she didn't notice.
Now at my new body, I felt a shiver. The aura on this planet was almost unbearable! It felt like a wrong move would have killed me instantly. Because of the rebirth, I lost the power I had before and with my new body, I wasn't even able to imagine, how I was able to even stay alive on this planet for months! The power gap between myself and about everything else on this planet just felt too big. I felt like an ant, while everything else was like an elephant, at least! My only goal for now was to reach my space dimension device as soon as possible and flee from this planet.
But to my surprise that was quite easy. I reached it a few hours later. Just like an elephant wouldn't notice an ant at his feet, the gods and creatures on this planet probably didn't even notice me anymore. Because I was at my weakest, I assumed, my only way to survive was to go back to Zeppelin. My space dimension device still had the coordinates of Zeppelin, which was the first planet I visited in this universe, so I went back straight to it.
It took three weeks to reach Zeppelin again. I tried not to waste all the time on this journey, so I trained as much as I could with my shadow clones. However, I had made only light training to make sure not to damage my device. That would have been really troublesome. As soon as I arrived on Zeppelin, I let my clones fight some slimes and frogs to test out, how strong I was compared to when I arrived first on Zeppelin. They were unexpectedly weak! Two of my shadow clones were enough to decimate all of them as soon as they appeared.
That made me felt a bit more confident again. Even thought I was much weaker than before my new rebirth, I was already much stronger than the last time I was on Zeppelin. When I challenged Hyperion and Itztli again, they weren't even a fight anymore. Hyperion gave up as soon as he saw my aura. I still had to beat him to be able to create light again. While I had memories from my previous rebirth, somehow I'd not been able to create anything anymore. It seemed like I had to defeat them to gain their power to create. So the knowledge of how to create something was not enough.
When I went for Itztli again, I walked up to him slowly. His gravitational power didn't affect me in the slightest. He tried to attack me once with his full power and gave up after that, because then he broke his fist.
Then I went on to the planet Gaia and challenged the goddess Gaia soon after. It also was an easy fight. I hadn't even trained much since I'd arrived there. I'd set up my shadow clones to fight monsters around the planet and had summoned a few more clones to train basic skills with each other. That was enough to regain a lot of my former power.
When I went to Shu, the wolves felt like puppies to me and were scared of only one of my shadow clones. The fight vs Shu wasn't that much harder and it didn't take long to defeat Suijin afterwards. This time, Gefion was nearby and watched my fight. He was proud at first and wanted to impress her, but he lost pathetically. When he shot his ice arrows, I just summoned my reflection barrier and reflected them back. When he was busy, dodging his reflected arrows of ice, I teleported behind him and took him out in one hit. After the fight, he was really scared of me, but explained me in detail, how to create his water.
Re-learning all my creations wasn't as bad as I thought at first. I learned them much faster than the first time and also learned something new every time. Compared to the first time, I was also able to create them faster and more effectively than before. Most importantly, air. When I had fought the zombies and skeletons in Diana's Tomb, I hadn't been able to create oxygen very well and had rather created plants to do the job for me. I had mostly learned how to control the air to be able to fly, but hadn't trained the creating air part well enough. This time, I focused more on creating air and oxygen itself, because I already knew how to control air quite well.
However, if I had been in the same condition again, I still would have used the plants instead of creating the air by myself. This would let me focus on other things more.
Gefion watched my fight against Suijin closely enough to know, that she wouldn't had a chance to win, so she had let me win without a fight and taught me how to create plants.
Soon after it was time to say goodbye, and I used my space dimension device once more to fly to Reality. I still had some shivers, when I thought about this planet, but now I defeated all other Gods I met until now again, so I felt prepared enough to face Reality.
It's been only four months since Diana almost killed me and I rebirthed again, but I already felt stronger than I was, when I arrived at Reality the first time, but the first time, it took me fifteen years of training to become this strong! I was sure my power potential also increased a lot because of that. Maybe I should have rebirthed sooner. Then I wouldn't have wasted so much time to prepare for Diana, which ended up as a failure anyway.
When I searched for Hathor again, I found her soon after, but not alone. I decided to create a shadow clone to watch her until she was alone. In the meanwhile I trained a bit more. Two days later, she was finally alone and I challenged her again.
This time, I tried to not burn down everything. Instead I concentrated my aura around my fists and punched all her trees away while moving toward her. Because I could attack faster than the trees, it worked quite well. She still blocked my path with her trees, but I could focus my aura ball to burn a hole into the tree-wall. This time, however, I stopped the fire from spreading as soon as my path was opened. When I was near her, the fight didn't take long and she was overwhelmed quickly.
After the fight, I noticed how Pontus had watched the fight. He had just observed us and didn't try to stop us at all. Then he moved toward us and congratulated me to my win. He found me interesting asked, if I would like to fight him and said, he is sure, I wouldn't win as easy as I won against Hathor.
As that removed the need to find him and I wanted to fight him anyway, I happily agreed. I hadn't any time to prepare for the fight, but I after my rebirth so far, I won quite easily against all previous gods, so I was sure, it wasn't needed anyway.
This time, he wanted to fight here, not in the water like last time. Maybe he had remembered the fight in the water, even thought he didn't remember me? He also didn't summon any fish. First he created a skin out of stone around himself, then surrounding that a barrier out of air which cut everything it touched.
He was way above Itztli and Shu, so it was not unexpected, that he could also control stones and air. The fight itself was a lot harder than the last time I had fought him. This time, he really showed me his power. I concentrated my aura around my fists and attacked him. With my aura, I was able to negate his wind barrier, so it didn't cut me, but it also reduced the force of my punches by a lot. His stone skin blocked the rest of the impact, so it was hard to hurt him. He also had a pretty good counter punch himself, after throwing my own. The fight lasted a few hours and we threw countless punches at each other, but I managed to win at the end.
I still stayed there for a bit and talked with Hathor and Pontus. Hathor explained to me her ability to create trees a bit better and Pontus showed me his power to create fish in anticipation. He really liked to talk about his fish and proudly taught me how he did that.
The fight made me think, if I was really much weaker than the first time I had fought him, or he just didn't show his power at that time, because he was more focused on his fish. Either way, there was no way that I would have a chance to win against Diana yet, so I had to train again. This time, however, I felt my potential was much greater than last time. I came this far much sooner and was sure to improve a lot faster after this point.

10-2: Diana and her TombEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Diana

When I was about to leave for my training, Diana suddenly appeared. "I heard you beat my dear brother, Pontus! Well, he is pretty weak, don't you want to fight someone much stronger, like me? I'd even give myself a handicap and won't attack you for one hour!" was what she said.
"No, sorry, I still have something to do. How about, I come back in one month, and then we fight?", I replied and she agreed, then I left for training. I was sure to lose at this time, but confident, that one month of training would be enough to prepare for the fight and destroy her tomb.
The last time, she almost killed me, when I put a crack into one wall of the tomb, so this time, I had to make sure to destroy the tomb in one attack, before she appeared.
I searched for some different places to train and found a hill with human like birds; Harpies. They soon noticed me and attacked me in a group of ten from all directions. I noticed them advancing and teleported away as soon as possible, and escaped. Then I summoned a lot of clones to fight them. Normally they wouldn't have been able to catch them, but when they worked together to teleport, it was possible. But the harpies were not stupid; they worked well together. They noticed that a teleport was only possible in a straight path and were able to estimate the endpoint of it to catch and kill a clone just after the teleport and before the clone was able to hit the targeted harpy.
The harpies also wanted to attack me instead of my clones all the time, so I had to move back and summon clones to surround and defend me. Because the harpies could fly and that even faster than my clones, it was hard to defend in the air, so I created a barrier above myself and the clones defended the entries on all sides.
That way, the clones didn't need to fly and could defend at the bottom, where the harpies lost their advantage. But even at the bottom, the harpies were strong. Speed and flying wasn't their only strength, they also had a solid defense and could withstand a few blows from my clones without a problem. My clones couldn't even defeat one harpy, but they were at least able to prevent them from entering my barrier and attacking me. Because of their good defense, they turned out to be a really good training partner. I didn't know how fast Diana was, because she never needed to show me her speed, but her defense was unbelievable strong. I was sure, that even after destroying the tomb, her defense would still be nothing to laugh at. I also had to increase my offensive power a lot to destroy the tomb before fighting her. I decided to stay here until my clones could kill a harpy in one hit.
Three days later, I already noticed big improvements from my clones. Now they still couldn't kill a harpy in one hit, but they were able to defeat harpies with the same number of clones. That meant, I had some clones left to train something else and let them continue the training I had them do before I rebirthed. I set up some more barriers and my clones tried to break them. To simulate the walls at the tomb, I changed the structure of my barriers a bit, so they wouldn't try to reflect punches and increased their durability instead. It took my clones about three days to destroy my first barrier. In the meantime, I thought of ways to increase the durability of the barrier and created a new, stronger one. I continued that training for three more weeks.
After this three weeks, my clones could play around with the harpies like with toys and one clone was enough to handle an army of harpies. Killing a harpy with one punch was easily possible at that time. My clones were also able to break four more versions of my barriers. There were four days left for my fight against Diana, so this time, I put in all my effort to create a barrier with the same size as Diana's Tomb. Creating a big tomb as that was not easily done. It took me five hours and I was totally exhausted after that. Because of the rest I needed after creating one, I could only let my clones destroy it and then recreate it about once a day. With the last day to use for resting, there had been enough time for three tries to simulate the destroying of the tomb. For the first tomb, it took my clones three hours to totally destroy it. For the second time, I had them attack it differently and it took them only two hours. With some improvements after that, they were able to destroy the third one within less than an hour. Almost one hour was still too slow, but I didn't participate myself. For Diana's Tomb, I planned to take part in destroying it which would speed it up a lot.
The next day, the time has come! I went to the tomb and was sure Diana would show up when I destroyed it, so I summoned my clones and took a deep breath, then attacked the tomb with full power. It didn't take even one minute for Diana to appear before me... Within this time, only less than ten percent of the tomb was destroyed and she was furious and tried to attack me with the same punch as last time. This time, I was prepared a bit for it and created a reflection barrier to stop her punch. It stopped it, but only her first punch and not her. I teleported away, as fast as I could and she caught up to me soon after with another punch in wait for me. And so the game with fleeing and blocking her punches began. It was a really dangerous and tiring game, but after each time, she became a bit weaker, because my clones were still destroying her tomb. The more they destroyed, the weaker she became; I just had to hold out until the tomb was totally destroyed by my clones.
About forty minutes later, the time came. The tomb was destroyed and Diana was already seriously weaker than before. She was still really strong; much stronger, than Pontus was, but the power gap between her and me wasn't big anymore. While her defense was still really powerful, her punches couldn't kill me anymore. I was able to block them now without taking too much damage. So I stopped running away and tried to counter attack, when I had the chance.
While she didn't take much damage from that, the damage accumulated with every hit and I felt, she would go down, if I would just last long enough.
Suddenly she started to summon all kinds of animals: tigers, lions, eagles and snakes which tried to attack me from all sides. However, because my clones were now free, I could use them to block the animals. My clones fought off her animals and our own fight continued for a long time.
A few hours later, the fight finally ended. It was a really close call and I was badly wounded. I had felt like I was about to lose and planned out for my final offense. It was all or nothing, either I'd won or lost the fight. First I had teleported away, then she followed me soon after. Diana had been also quite beat up and couldn't catch up to my teleport as fast anymore, so I was able to teleport a few times to confuse her, to hopefully make her lose sight of me. Then I had concentrated all my left over aura into my fist and charged at her with my fifth teleport from behind. Just before the impact she had noticed me, but it was already too late for her to block it. She still turned around, but then my fist had fully hit her chest, just where her heart was. The weight of the impact had paralyzed her for a split second which left me for a chance to knock her out. Though I had used up almost all my power with that hit, I couldn't let this last chance pass by, and had made a final effort to hit her to the head with a dragon fist, which had knocked her out.
I won!
It was the hardest fight against a god until now. I still couldn't believe my win, but I really did it. I lay down a bit to recover my strength while waiting for Diana to wake up. That was sooner then I hoped. Not even ten minutes later, she got up and was still of rage and wanted to attack me. When I looked at her, I found that she had teary eyes? I didn't want to fight her again, and I might had even lost at that time, so I tried to stop her and asked why she was so furious after I destroyed the tomb. I'd even help her to rebuild it.
It took me two more hours to stop the fight until she finally agreed to not attack me anymore. She had told me that the tomb was a gift from Izanagi who was her master and teacher for more than fifty years, until he left the planet to create his own world. Diana cared a lot for the tomb and steadily increased and improved it for numerous years. While doing that, she had been able to enchant it with several runes, which had given the tomb the ability to consume power from the surrounding area and give it to her.
I might have never defeated her, if I hadn't destroyed the tomb, but that made me feel really bad and like I promised, I helped her to rebuild this tomb. Building the tomb the same way as I had been doing it for the imitation tombs in my preparation for the fight was not possible, though. The imitation tombs constantly drained my stamina for the barriers, so I had to find a better way. While I was on it, I also tried to find out, how Diana was able to cast the runes to take power from the tomb. It seemed to be a really useful ability to increase my power, and I planned to build my own tombs as soon as we were finished here.
Diana hadn't lied about the years it took to create the first tomb. While we were able to rebuild the initial tomb within a week, improving it the way it was before took a long time. Because we worked on it together and the fact that she had previous experience, it didn't take use several years this time, but we still worked on it for a whole seven months until we finally finished it. In this long time, Diana also explained to me her ability to create animals, and I could create my own animals now. It was similar to creating fish, but the animals also liked to eat fish, so I had to give them some. She also became a lot friendlier with me, than she was at the beginning. Before it was time for me to leave, I asked her about Hathor's father.
The name of Hathor's father was Poseidon. Diana advised me to go out of his way and don't try to fight him, I would have no chance. He is by far the strongest one on this planet and even Izanagi, who was much stronger than her, would be like an ant compared to his overwhelming power.
Then I asked her a bit more about Izanagi and where I could find him. She pointed at the sky in the direction of his planet or rather the stars from it's solar system. He named the planet Excile.
Now my next goal was set; defeating Izanagi at Excile!

11-1: The first monumentsEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Izanagi

Year 9038, June, Planet Excile!

Before going to Excile, I decided to go back to one of the earth-like planets I had visited before; the one with low gravity. This planet seemed to be a good one for my own monuments. Diana only had a tomb as her monument and it would have taken me at least a year to build one by myself; or even longer to create the enchantments like Diana did. A planet with a low gravity would reduce the time needed to build it. It also didn't need to be a tomb, it could have been any building, as long as I added enchantments to them, so they increased my power.
I thought of the seven classic world wonders, I just gave them my own names. "Mighty Statue" for "Colossus of Rhodes", "Mystic Garden" for the "Hanging Gardens of Babylon", "Tomb of Gods" for the "Mausoleum of Halicarnassus", "Everlasting Lighthouse" for "Lighthouse of Alexandria", "Godly Statue" for the "Statue of Zeus", "Pyramids of Power" for the "Great Pyramid of Giza" and finally "Temple of God" for the "Temple of Artemis".
First I started with the Mighty Statue. I wanted to build a really big one - bigger than the creatures on this planet. The goal was to increase my own power, so it just had to look like myself.
That was the main problem. I was no artist, so it took me months to get it right, but I eventually finished my first Mighty Statue. I had to spend most of my time to call my asteroid friends for stones, while I had my clones build the statue. After it was built, it didn't do anything at first, because the enchantments were missing. I tried to copy the ability from Diana, but it still required some work, so I summoned even more clones to enchant the statue until I could feel my own power increasing. About one month later, my physical power doubled and I felt like that was the limit of one statue.
Because the power boost was so big, I tried to follow up with a second statue. About three weeks later it was finished, but it had no effect at all. I made it the same way as the first one, but somehow only the first statue improved my power. Then I improved the second statue a bit more and worked on it until I could feel another power boost. That took me almost six months! Then I noticed that my second statue was about five times as big as the first one. I could feel that each subsequent statue had to be bigger than the previous one, so eventually it would have taken forever to build them.
The building process itself wasn't too time consuming. My clones were now also able to do the enchantments by themselves, so I only had to provide enough stones for future statues. That was the bigger issue. It was hard to create enough stones. Summoning my asteroid friends for stones might have sounded easy, but that took a lot of concentration and stamina. I could only summon a limited amount of stones every day.
Instead of building another statue, I decided to train a bit more and test my new found durability. There I noticed that my recovery speed limited my overall power quite a lot. While the statues had given me a huge boost to my physical power, it hadn't done anything for my recovery speed. Building more mighty statues would have just increased the gap between my stamina and recovery speed.
The Mighty Statue, however, was only the first of my own seven world wonders. The next one, "Mystic Garden" sounded just like the right way to improve my regeneration speed; a big garden full of plants and trees would surely help with it. Then I started to create one. Instead of stones, I had to create a lot of water and plants for my garden. That took really long. While my clones were able to build anything, if I just gave them the right instructions, they were unable to create anything like me. Building something from existing materials was much easier than creating something entirely new. Every time they tried that, it just turned into charcoal. Sometimes it even caused explosions and ended up destroying some of my own creations. Then I gave up trying to teach them how to create something new and told them to focus on building, training or fighting monsters only.
I managed to finish it after around five weeks which was slower than my first mighty statue, but faster than my second one, but the effect of the garden was also much better than I expected. I could feel the much improved recovery speed far exceeded the increase in physical power from both of my mighty statues.
When I wanted to continue with my Tomb of Gods, it proved to be much more difficult than I expected it to be. I made it similar to the one I had built together with Diana, then tried different versions of it, but after more than three months and building three different Tombs, none of them had any effect at all! I felt like there was something missing.
When I talked to Diana, she mentioned Izanagi, who had created her Tomb in the first place. I also wanted to find and fight Izanagi, so I thought it was time to move on. I had now spent almost a year on this planet, building monuments and also training a lot to increase my power. Now I felt confident enough to go after Izanagi, and went back to my Space Dimension device to search for the planet Excile.
When Diana told me about Izanagi, she pointed to a solar system. There had been only one planet where life was possible, so it was easy to find. It still took my Space Dimension Device about a week to fly the distance. While traveling, I had trained a bit more for the first five days and had rested the last two days to make sure I was in my best condition upon arriving in Excile. When the planet was in sight, I noticed how beautiful it was. I reminded me of the old earth from my own universe, before it had been destroyed. It was mostly blue with a lot of water and you could see the continents in green color.
After landing on the planet, I noticed something new. Humans! It was the first time I had seen humans since I came to this universe and there were many of them. The gods I saw and fought looked similar then them, but because of their godly power, I couldn't really compare them to humans. When I came closer and tried to talk to them, they totally ignored me. It seemed like they didn't talk at all, and they were busy. Some humans carried stones, others created buildings and remaining ones hunted for food. I looked a bit around, and observed them for a while. Their behavior was quite strange, and to me they seemed more like robots than humans. Comparable to my shadow clones? Yes, that sounded right. They were made of flesh, blood and looked like humans, but they didn't behave like the humans I knew. They only worked almost non-stop. Once in a while a human collapsed and took a break, but then others glared at them and so most breaks were really short. While I was watching, two humans didn't get up after collapsing and probably died. Three humans died, because some stones fell on them. In the evening they stopped working, and ate the food their hunters brought back. They devoured the meat raw! It appeared like they didn't really know how to cook, or even care about it. After eating they all went to sleep. Most of them didn't even have a roof over their head and slept out in the open.
After watching them for half a day, I wondered, how they could survive. Since I appeared, five out of around five hundred humans died. If it were to continue like that, the whole population would die out within less then a year. I also didn't see any female, or child at all. There were only adult males. But then, I couldn't really use the laws of my own universe. They were probably all created by a god. Izanagi? So they had no need to take care of their survival, and the creator of them would replace them after they died. Maybe he only made males, because they were stronger and were better suited to physical work?
The next day, I went on and scouted the location a bit more. Then I saw something like an arena. In the center, there were humans who fought each other. One of them used a stick with an arrow shaped stone in front, and the other one used two knife shaped stones. Welcome to the stone age! Or something like that. The fight didn't last long, and the human with the spear killed the one with the knives. Shortly after, someone came to the fight area and removed the dead human, then took his knives and fought in his stead. This time, he killed the one with the spear and it continued like that...
The arena also had a tribune, and there was only one person watching. He probably was the king of the humans and they fought for his enjoyment? But it was not Izanagi. I didn't feel any special power from him and he was probably weak. But he was someone important at least. Maybe Izanagi made him the leader to watch over the others, so they will work without rest. At first, I thought it might have been a good idea to go and try to talk to him, but then I called it off. I came here only to watch and didn't want to disrupt their order. I had the feeling that I wouldn't have been able to understand him anyway. The humans here didn't seem to be very intelligent and they only used body language to communicate. I also thought it would be better to get to know the planet and the area, so I moved on and continued to scout the planet until I would find Izanagi.

11-2: Orcs, humans, and IzanagiEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Izanagi

Around hundred kilometers further, I noticed some more human-like beings. But they were much bigger. Most were higher than two meters and some even around three meters. They also were really bulky, had lots of muscles, and green skin! Orcs. They walked around in a group of around twenty and each one had a big club in his hand. It seemed like they were out hunting for something.
I decided to follow them for a bit, and soon after, they came to a human village. But not, because they lived there. Only the normal kind of humans, like the ones I saw before, lived in this village. One of the humans noticed the Orcs, then all of them panicked and tried to flee. At the same time, the Orcs smashed their club into the earth which caused earthquakes and tremors. Most of the houses collapsed and almost all of the humans fell down, or were paralyzed. Then the Orcs surrounded the village and tried to catch the humans. It was quite easy for them, and they caught most of the humans within minutes. Maybe the humans were their food, and it was some kind of daily routine for the Orcs.
Only the strong will survive, the weak ones will die, like everywhere in this universe. It wasn't much different to my old universe. The difference was, that there, the humans had been by far the strongest beings. Not physically, but their intelligence. It had been their biggest strength, and combined with greed, their downfall. Here in this universe, the humans were only like some weak animals. Not very intelligent and far weaker than the Orcs they tried to flee from.
Even though it was the ecosystem on this planet and probably perfectly normal, I summoned some shadow clones to fight off the Orcs. They were some new enemies, a good way to train my clones and myself. I had to get stronger after all, and defeating Izanagi would be harder than any god I had fought so far.
First, ten of my clones went against the twenty Orcs and ten more clones provided some support from the air, and shot down aura balls toward them. The Orcs were somehow not surprised at all. One Orc in the center smashed down his club and stunned all clones on ground, while some other Orcs played with the aura balls as if they were baseballs, and smashed them back like one homerun after another. Some of the counter balls even hit and destroyed my shadow clones. In the meanwhile, a 'cleanup-orc' smashed the stunned clones at ground to death; not even a minute after I sent my twenty clones, all of them died.
I guess I underestimated the Orcs quite a bit. The humans were so weak that the Orcs didn't need to show their true strength. My clones were much stronger than the humans, so they used much more power to fight them off. They probably thought that my clones came to steal their prey, the humans, and protected it. Considering how effective and organized as they fought off my clones, they probably had to fight back enemies pretty often.
Still, it was not the first time my clones lost to a new enemy. They actually had much more experience in losing, than in winning fights. This time, I summoned one hundred clones to fight the Orcs. Staying on the ground was dangerous, so all of them flew and stayed in the air. Because the last time the Orcs easily countered the aura balls, this time they didn't use them. I made them work together, hiding behind each other, throwing kicks from the air, or throwing each other for an additional speed boost, and less predictability. The Orcs could still hold their ground pretty well and killed almost half of the clones before they managed to take down the first Orc. Then I summoned another fifty clones, the fight became easier, and it didn't take much longer until all of the Orcs were killed. Sadly, I didn't manage to save the humans and all of them died, too. The fight was just too fierce and destroyed most of the surroundings.
Then I went on for some more Orcs to train my clones and myself a bit more, before searching for Izanagi. I was able to kill twenty of them, but it took me more than two hundred clones for that. I would have felt better if my clones were at least as strong as the Orcs, and they would win in a one vs one fight. While thinking that, I summoned a few thousand clones to spread out and search the area for more Orcs. It didn't take long to find an Orc village. The population of it was probably at least five hundred or even a thousand, so a good number to train my clones some more.
About one hundred of the Orcs were surrounding the village, watching for enemies. The others were inside the village, eating, sleeping, or doing something else.
I started with sending out two hundred clones. The Orcs killed about half of them, before they even reached the village. They just threw their clubs like boomerangs towards my clones. Not only their throws, but also their clubs were really amazing. They were really durable and smashed through rocks without losing much speed. Because the Orcs threw them at a speed faster than sound, my clones could only hear them after they reached them, when it was too late. They were also rotating really fast, so it was almost impossible to see them, and this also increased their range. They also came back to the Orcs every time without fail, even if they smashed through boulders or my clones on their way. Teleporting would have been faster than the clubs, but that took some preparation and the range wasn't good enough to be much of use.
In the end, my one hundred clones managed to kill 2 Orcs before they were completely decimated. Attacking the village was a lot harder than attacking the group of twenty Orcs. The defense was really tough. I could have send a few ten thousand clones to win with numbers, but that was not my goal, so I continued to send waves of one hundred clones at a time. I did this the whole day and none of my waves were able to defeat more than four Orcs. It also appeared like the number of Orcs in the village increased in the mean time; but that was a good thing. This implied that my training partners wouldn't run out so fast.
I had stayed near the village about two more weeks, then my clones were able to kill more Orcs than new ones appeared, and less than five hundred were left in the village. While fighting the Orcs, I had learned quite a bit about how to dodge high speed projectiles. In the end, my clones were able to dodge the flying clubs more than nine out of ten times. They still couldn't see them, but predict their path quite well after watching the Orcs throwing them. It still required them to pay a lot of attention to the Orcs, and it was troublesome when a few of them threw clubs at once, but compared to the beginning, it was good enough. Now I decided go on and search for Izanagi.
A few hours later, I discovered a pyramid. An enormous pyramid! It was at least three hundred meters tall and broader than a kilometer. On top of the pyramid, I saw someone sitting. His aura was different to that of everything else I saw on this planet up to now. It had to be a god. Probably Izanagi, at least I hoped so. The pyramid itself was surrounded with masses of humans. Some of them prayed to him, others brought him food and other things. Most of them, however, worked on something. Some added decorations to the pyramid, some worked on the huge garden beside the pyramid and others transported dead humans? I observed them for a while, careful not to be noticed from Izanagi; then I saw him resurrecting the dead humans. Not only that, he also created new humans once in a while.
Then I decided to meet him and flew nearer. It didn't take long until he noticed me, then he got up and flew toward me. He could also fly, like me. With an angry voice, he spoke to me: "What are you doing here? This is MY planet. There is no need for any other god!. Go back to where you came from!". Then I replied with: "Fine, but you have to fight me first. If you win, I will go back to where I came from. If I win, I will only go back if you teach me how to create the humans." This made him even angrier and he replied: "Hmpf, I will teach you a lesson. As if I would lose to a puny god like you!" and started to attack me.
He started with a kick out of nowhere which surprised me a bit, but I still managed to dodge it. However, I noticed some arrows and stones flying toward me. Not some, hundreds or even thousands of them. When I looked to where they came from, I saw armies of humans on the roofs of the buildings, and even on the pyramids. They used bows with arrows, and even catapults to shoot at me. Compared to the clubs of the Orcs, the arrows and stones flew like in slow motion. But even if they flew in slow motion, if there are thousands of them, it was hard to dodge them all. Although they couldn't pierce through my aura, which meant, there was no danger or need to dodge them, but it annoyed the hell out of me. It made also made it it hard to focus on the fight with Izanagi. I rather dodged them, and the best way would have been to fly higher than their reach, but Izanagi blocked the way above me. He was floating in the air with his arms crossed, grinning, and following me around, preventing me to go up. It was like saying, he is the one on top, everyone else is below him and should just admire him and do what he says.
As there was no way up, I had no choice but to summon shadow clones. They might had no use in fighting him, but they could take out the humans for sure. They were weak after all. First I summoned them in the air to protect me and catch all the arrows before they reached me, or threw back the stones to destroy the catapults. Then they went to the ground and knocked out the humans with their bow to prevent them firing more arrows. Some of the humans died from that, but I didn't have much choice. Izanagi didn't like that. He resurrected them and created more on top of them. And so their numbers increased.
But my shadow clones didn't die when fighting the humans. He had to constantly resurrect and create humans, while I didn't need to worry about my shadow clones. This caused him to focus way to much on the humans, and I only had to focus on our fight. He still put up a good fight, but he severely underestimated me. For every punch he threw, I was able to throw two. I dodged more then half of his attacks and he was barely able to dodge any of mine. His stamina and defense was still very good; probably even better then the defense of Diana. Even half a day later, when he was breathing heavily, I was unable to take him out and he didn't want to give up.
Another hour later, I finally managed to knock him out with a good combination of one hundred and eight hits. The long and arduous fight also drained my stamina up to my limit, and I wouldn't have been able to continue much longer. He probably would have won the fight if he had ignored the humans and just fought me with all his power. I wasn't that happy with a victory like this; it didn't feel like I really won the fight. It might have been bad of me to go after the weak humans, but they started it, and their arrows had been annoying. So there was not much choice but to use my clones to take them out.
After Izanagi lost consciousness, all the humans ran away in fear, and I stopped my shadow clones, because there was no need to fight them anymore. I just waited a while until Izanagi regained consciousness, and rested myself for the time being to recover my strength.
It took five hours, but then Izanagi finally got up. He was still dizzy in his head and couldn't believe he lost, but he kept his word, and promised to teach me how to create humans. He still wanted to rest until the next day, then we started after he woke up. The most important thing while creating humans was water. He first showed me to create water in the shape of a human, then he used the vines of plants, hardened them to make a skeleton, and inserted them into the water. He continued with surrounding it with animal skin, then imbued the whole creature with life. While doing that, the water became blood and the organs were formed slowly. Finally he stuffed a fish into its mouth, because humans are always hungry after they are created.
When I watched him doing that, it all looked so easy and he created a human in a few seconds. He even said that he made it slowly to explain it to me. But he was different to me and probably created thousands of humans every day for hundreds of years. It was not my goal to only create humans in my life, but to become stronger. So I learned his teachings until I was able to create a few humans to go on with my journey soon after that.
It still took me five months until I finally got it right...
My first attempt was nothing more than a slime monster, it was squishy, falling apart, and tried to attack me. Maybe this was how monsters were created? Were all monsters failed attempts in creating something else? I tried to ask Izanagi, where the Orcs on this planet came from and didn't want to answer me. Maybe he was to proud to say, they were his failed attempts in creating humans, or it was something else. I didn't know, but stopped to pry in further.
When I asked him if he was the only god on this planet, he answered: "Naturally! I wouldn't allow any other god to stay here. You are no exception here. I taught you how to create humans, so go back to where you came from." And so he forced me out of the planet. I had promised to leave after he taught me, and I didn't want to make an enemy out of him, so I complied and started my journey to go back to my monument planet.

12-1: Pyramids and bandagesEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Nephthys

Year 9040, May, Planet Reality

Upon arrival at my monument planet, I remembered that I had forgotten to ask Izanagi how he created the tomb for Diana. This meant I had to work it out myself. As Izanagi didn't do much more than creating and resurrecting humans and then using them as slave labour to build structures on his planet, they might have something to do with the tombs power. Maybe the humans who died while creating the tomb unlocked its full potential? I had never thought about it before, and Diana never said anything about it, but Diana's tomb could already have bodies in it - someone important to her might be buried there.
The first thing I did on the planet was to create a human. It took me a long time. Finally, a few weeks later, I had a living human! I tried to teach him how to do some work, but he just stood there and looked at me with confused eyes...
I pointed towards the half finished tomb and told him to do the same as my clones. They had already finished constructing a significant part of the tomb while I was creating the human. However, after trying to take one step, the human fell down and was unable to stand up again. It seemed I had to teach him how to walk first...
While his body was like an adults, his mind was more like a babys. He knew nothing at all. That made me wonder how the humans Izanagi had created could have even basic intelligence. I had not seen him teaching them anything. Maybe his experience had made the difference. Making humans was complicated. The hardest part was creating the brain. That was tricky enough on its own. I had no idea how to add any basic knowledge to it.
When I learnt how to create humans on Excile, I hadn't been testing them out after I created them. I had just left them there and thought they would be the same as the ones that Izanagi had created. Izanagi probably knew this hadn't been the case, but he hadn't said a word about it. He probably just wanted me to leave his planet as soon as possible and didn't care if I did it right or not. Now I could see that I hadn't done it right and probably would have needed much longer to do so.
I hoped that my human would at least be able to learn, so I tried to teach him how to walk. One week later, my clones had finished the tomb but the human was still unable to walk by himself. I could see some small progress, but it would have taken too long for him to learn how to walk unaided, so I had some of my clones carry him into the centre of the tomb.
My goal was to gain more power through the tomb, not to create intelligent humans anyway. So the human was more of a test subject than anything else. In his current state, my human also couldn't be really called a human. Even the animals I created before seemed to have more intelligence. At least I hadn't needed to teach them how to walk or eat food!
Placing the human at the centre of the tomb still didn't increase my power, so that was not the solution. While thinking about what was missing, I created another human with the intention of making it a bit more intelligent. This time, I spent a bit more time on it and was extra careful when creating the brain. That took me a whole week. When he was finished, he suddenly opened up his mouth and tried to bite me!
Naturally I dodged this. He was probably hungry, so I stuffed a fish into his mouth. Hastily, he ate the fish and was satisfied for a while. Suddenly I felt my power rising! I felt much stronger then before. It felt that I could smash anything to dust now. I moved into the tomb, to where the human was, to find out what had happened. There was a light, shining brightly, where he was sitting. But the human was dead. I had been focusing so much on creating my new human that I had totally forgotten to feed him. He must have starved to death. He still hadnt learnt to move and there was no food in sight.
It was not my intention to kill him, but maybe it was needed in order for the tomb to give me power? Whilst I grieved his death, I was also happy that I had achieved my goal. I did feel a bit guilty, so I tried to revive him as Izanagi had with the dead humans on his planet, ignoring the risk that his revival would deprive me of my new increased power level. Needless to say, I failed. It was even harder than creating a new one.
At least he had a worthy grave. Back on earth, no human would have been blessed with such a big and beautiful tomb. My first human on this planet should be happy about that. Then a thought crossed my mind: I didn't even name him! So I called him 'John Doe', after the hacker who made it possible for me to reach this universe more than forty years ago, and I wrote that on his tombstone.
Creating humans was quite boring, hard to do and took ages, so I decided to stop for now and started travelling back to Reality. My clones were strong enough to survive on this planet alone, so I left some of them there. I also made sure they had enough stone, water and plants to build a few more mighty statues and mystic gardens for me. My second human was quite useless on his own, but I let him stay there and instructed my clones to feed and protect him. I also told them how to teach him to find his own food.
I wished that Izanagi would create some humans for me; he could create them much faster and with a better result than me. But if I were to go back to him, he was likely to be pretty angry with me. Even if I could convince him to create some humans for me, he would undoubtedly want something in return. The only thing I could offer him was the divinity I gained from fighting monsters. But I didnt have much control over that divinity. While I could let it appear and disappear, I had no way of dividing it into smaller parts. If I offered it to Izanagi now, I would have to give him all the divinity I had. I would have nothing left after the first trade. I also wasn't sure what it was useful for, or if he even would want it.
I started up my space dimension device and trained a bit more until it finally arrived at Reality a few weeks later. I decided to search for my next godly target and to ask her about divinity after I defeated her.
The first time I arrived at Reality, I saw one god (Pontus) and two goddesses (Diana and a stranger) sitting together with Hathor. I already had defeated two of them so, this time, the strange goddess was my goal.
Before that, I searched for a new monster race to defeat and train on. In the past, this had been usually a good idea and the power I had gained from it had proved to be useful for fighting the next god. While the recently built tomb had made me much more powerful, my last fight against Izanagi was really hard and I almost lost. I wanted to train a bit more to prepare for the next fight, to be able to win slightly more easily than the last time. The power gap between the gods until now had been huge, so past experience suggested my next fight was likely to be much harder than the Izanagi one.
Just like fighting monsters, the tomb had increased almost only my offensive power. It seemed that the boost from monuments would increase my power proportionately to how powerful I was already, and grow even more as my base strength increased.
This meant fighting monsters, especially new and more powerful monsters, would boost my offensive power a lot when combined with my tomb. I could already see myself defeating the next goddess in one punch after training for a while on new monsters!
Three days later, I had scouted quite a big area with my clones and found seven pyramids. Really huge pyramids, similar to the ones Izanagi had built on Excile. Perhaps that was where he lived before he had moved to his own planet?
Some of the pyramids were rough in outline. Really big stones had been used to build them, so the edges were visible from some way off. For the larger pyramids, the stones were smaller. From a distance, they appeared really smooth. Had the big stones been a bad idea? With smaller steps, you can reach further. It's not good to start with the biggest steps only to stop before the end because it becomes too difficult to get there. This was also true for me when fighting gods. I already had a good way to assess the power of other gods and I could challenge one god at a time. I decided to work from the bottom to the top. This way, I was sure to reach the top sooner or later. If I skipped some on the way or went for stronger gods first, I would never be able to make it to the top.
I couldn't feel the presence of any living beings near the pyramids, so I approached one of them and looked for an entrance to search inside it. No luck. After two hours, I started to get impatient and thought to myself: "Why don't I make my own entrance? It should be easy after my recent power boost and all my training to destroy Diana's tomb". If they were Izanagi's pyramids, he probably didn't need them anymore, so nobody would mind a few extra entrances.
I had an eerie feeling near the pyramids. To avoid any deadly surprises like traps, I stepped back a bit. I let my shadow clones build up their power to smash a big hole into one of the pyramids. Just as easily as I had imagined, they blasted open a new entrance. But I was right to be extra careful. A few seconds later, all my clones within ten meters of the new entrance were suddenly wrapped in bandages and I was unable to control them anymore!
Thousands of bandages came flying out of the new entrance towards my clones and even towards me. As they essentially rendered my clones useless, it was really risky to be touched by them. The bandages were slower than me or my clones, but there were lots of them and they blocked my escape routes. Luckily, I was able to react fast enough and escaped by flying upwards before they blocked that path, but most of my clones were caught. Once I was high enough, the bandages were unable to follow me and gave up.
I got the still untouched clones to fight the ones that had been mummified. But as soon as the untouched clones comes into contact with the bandaged ones, they were also mummified and I lost all control over them. This lead to the mummies increasing in number really fast, while my clones became less and less. It still wasn't as bad as it sounded because, when I lost control over the clones, they no longer drained my stamina. This meant I could create an endless number of new clones, after the old ones had turned into mummies, at my top speed. However, I still was at a big disadvantage. The more clones I made, the bigger the difference in number became, as currently they were only food for the bandages.
My first idea was that bandages would probably burn easily. But aura balls took some time to prepare and the bandages intercepted all attempts to fire them. I tried to fire one myself, but I had to keep my distance and the greater the distance from my aura ball to an enemy, the weaker the impact and the slower they became. At the distance I was at, the mummies were easily able to dodge them.
Even after creating hundreds of clones from further away from the mummies and making them all fire at once, the mummies still dodged them without a problem. The distance was too great for them to be useful for this fight. I could have found some way out by summoning asteroids or stuff like that, but I wanted my clones to fight them off by themselves. I created more shadow clones and watched them fight. I also wondered how many bandages there were ... they seemed to be endless. Even after turning a few thousand of my clones into mummies, the bandages didn't show any sign of running out.
My next idea was to have some of my clones create an aura ball and to use another clone to teleport them into the mummies. It was not really successful. Somehow the bandages intercepted the clones just before the end of the teleport and wrapped themselves around the missiles until the aura balls were fired into the sand, finally wrapping themselves around the rest of the clone. Another mummy was created but also a big hole in the sand, which was filled again with sand seconds after that. I wondered why they could intercept and render useless my clones attacks without effort, but couldn't see a reason. Was there someone controlling them, who supervised the whole fight?
I took a short break to scout the area a bit more, but I noticed no-one else there. So either their master was far away and was able somehow to watch the fight - perhaps through some magic mirror or something like that - or they had their own minds and were just able to read my clones really easily. I really hoped for the latter and continued the fight as though that were the case. Might the pyramids act as their eyes?
To find that out, I started with my next effort to fight the mummies. This time, I had the clones facing away from the pyramids concentrate their power and act as though they were firing an aura ball in the same way as before. The difference was that they were only decoys to misdirect the bandages and mummies. I secretly created clones who hid behind them, preparing to fight after the decoys failed in their attempt. Then the decoys attacked as before and the hidden clones prepared to attack soon after the failed decoy attack while hiding in their shadows.
The result was quite mediocre. As before, the bandages were able to snatch away the first clone and create another mummy. The second clone was able to blast away the newly created mummy but it didn't burn, just turned into bandages again. The clone inside was killed by the blast and the bandages wrapped themselves around the now defenceless attacker clone. So, in the end, each attack lost me two clones while doing no damage to the mummies. I wondered why they didn't burn. The blast was quite big, but no mummy or bandage even caught fire. Non-flammable bandages? Well, at least I was able to turn the mummy back into bandages for a short while, so I called this at least a small success; something I could work on and improve. They didn't catch on to my misdirection move and it seemed they weren't able to learn from it, as it worked again and again.
I improved the strategy and technique of my misdirection move for two more weeks. I didn't manage to destroy the bandages, but I did destroy all the mummies that were created. By this time, I was using five clones for each attack: one decoy, one teleporter, one clone hiding in the shadow of the decoy with an attack waiting, the fourth hiding in the shadow of the first attacker and the last one hiding in the shadow of the second attacker. With this strategy, I was able to destroy all the mummies and push them back to the entrance where they came from. From then on, it was pretty easy to keep them in check. The entry was round and had a diameter of some 1.5 meters - small enough for one of my clones to watch the entry and keep the bandages in check. The weeks of fighting them made my clones good enough to predict their movements, so they didn't turn into mummies again. The bandages adjusted to that a bit and formed a mummy out of bandages without my clone, but that also slowed down their movements. So my clones had an even easier fight against them than before.

12-2: Nephthys the river goddessEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Nephthys

Then I went on to search for the strange goddess, leaving some of my clones to watch and fight the mummies; it was still good training for them and it also gave me some divinity, which I wanted to use soon. When I got back to where I had first seen the strange goddess, she wasn't there. Diana was. I asked Diana where the other goddess was and for her name. Diana told me her name was 'Nephthys' and pointed in the relevant direction. She didn't want to tell me more but that was enough, so I thanked her and went on to search for Nephthys. It was not difficult to find her. She was at the other side of a big river, playing with water without touching it, in the air. As the water fell, a rainbow appeared. It was beautiful. It was nothing like the power to create and control water I had learnt from Suijin. Comparing her power with Suijin's power was like comparing a drop of water with a river. One of her hand movements was enough to create masses of water in the air from apparently nothing. She was also able freely to control it. But I didn't feel too intimidated by her power. While her power felt impressive compared with Suijins, it still didn't even come close to the power Hathor's father once showed me. I felt that I could match her power with my own and win against her.
After seeing her power, I was already sure my favourite aura ball was useless against her. Her masses of water would just vaporize it. But it is not like that was my only weapon. I already had a fine control over the elements myself and dodging her water attacks while flying in the air was possible. Attacking her from above seemed to be the best way as it would help me to use the planet's gravity to my advantage. I fired myself up and called out to her.
"Nephthys! You seem to be strong, and you create beautiful rainbows... Well let's skip this... I heard you will accept any challenge and here I am! I want to fight you; I challenge you to a duel."
After she replied with: "Who said this?", I countered with: "Oh, is that wrong? And I came such a long way...", sounding sad. She had no option other than to accept my challenge, and so the fight began.
First I flew upwards and then charged down, fists in front, at top speed. She didn't move at all - just created a barrier out of water which arrested my assault. I would have been able to go though the water but it slowed me too much. If I had continued with my attack, it would have made me an easy target after slowing so much in the water. She didn't remove her water barrier after the attack and it surrounded her completely, leaving me with no way to attack: at least, not with punches or kicks. I tried to fire a few aura balls against the barrier but, as I feared at the beginning, they just vaporized in the water and didn't even come close to reaching her. To make it worse, she could use the water to attack me without breaking up the barrier. Millions of small water balls followed me around. They were annoying - even water can be sharp and dangerous if flying at high speed and high pressure. When I focused my concentration on my defensive aura, the water couldn't pierce my armour, but it drained my stamina quite a bit.
I flew up again and called asteroids to rain down on her water barrier. It worked at first, creating holes in her barrier, but she was easily able to deflect them. They destroyed everything around her but didn't help me at all. I tried creating some plants, like Hathor did, but I was too slow to make much use of them. I was able to create and control the plants but she could create and manipulate the water far faster. When the plants were able to make holes in her barrier, she just moved elsewhere.
However, before long, I noticed that her water was wettening everything around her, making it much easier for me to create soil. Plants were not required: just controlling the earth and closing off the areas to where she could move made the fight so much easier. She was able to move on the water and fly like that, but she noticed too late that the earth beneath her was slowly sinking. When she wanted to go upwards to escape the hole she was in, I blocked her way out with a reflection barrier. My reflection barrier reflected her water barrier. The water barrier was strong enough to hold my barrier outside but, because I was above her and she was in a hole, surrounded by soil, I was at a big advantage. I just increased the weight of the reflection barrier, and gravity did the rest.
Now it was just a matter of time until her water barrier broke. When it did, I stepped into the hole and attacked her with my strongest combination hits of 108 fists of destiny punches. She still put up a good fight and almost escaped the hole, but I had prepared for that and had made sure to block the way behind me with walls of stone. She was able to break them easily, but that left her defenceless and it gave me enough time to attack her further.
After noticing that trying to escape just reduced her chances to win, Nephthys went into full fighting mode. It seemed that she couldn't breathe in the water, so she surrounded only her skin with a few centimetres of water to act as a shield, just as I did with my aura. The difference was that my aura contained four elements: water, fire, earth, and wind. The combination made it much denser and harder to break than her water barrier. The main advantage of her water barrier was the quantity of water and its thickness, which was lost now. She didnt stand a chance in the current fist fight. She used water and tried to attack me with it, but in the closed area we were now in, she wasn't able freely to control it or to put much pressure into it. I pretty much had the upper hand in every way. About ten minutes later, she gave up. I won!
After a short break, I showed her my divinity and asked her what it was and how I could use it. She was quite surprised and asked me where I got it. Apparently divinity is hard to get for other gods and it increases their power to create anything more than a hundredfold. It didn't do much for me and I was unable to gain anything from it, but she said she would gladly create and give me a few rivers if I gave her some. I didn't need rivers now, but asked her if her offer would still stand if I needed some in future.
She also gave me a measuring tool which allowed me to split my divinity exactly and reproducibly into small parts of the same size. It could also create a bubble of divinity of different densities. The tool then could measure the exact amount of divinity contained in it. This meant I could now use my divinity to trade with gods! Because it increased their creating speed, trading it for their creations would be easy. One of my next steps now was to buy humans from Izanagi, but first I asked Nephthys a bit more about her rivers: how she made them so fast and whether she could teach me to do the same.
Nephthys tried to teach me how she made the water and rivers but I didn't get it, even after a month. She was able to somehow convert everything surrounding her into water and then make a river out of it. She must have had some special power I was unable to acquire. The month of training did help me to create and control water a lot better than before, but I had to use my old way of creating it. Creating a river out of the water I created was easy, but it took me forever. I was quite sure I wouldn't do that often. Because I had my divinity and she was happy to sell me her rivers, there was also no need to.
Before I went on with my journey, I asked her who the next more powerful goddess or god was and where I could find her or him. The name was Cybele, a goddess. Cybele preferred to play with animals over other gods, and was rarely seen together with them. She was still on Reality, but surrounded by mountains, living in a cave. I was glad I asked Nephthys about Cybeles whereabouts as I would have had a hard time finding her on my own. I thanked Nephthys and went on: not to find Cybele, I felt it was too soon for that, but to create a few more monuments. Now that I had a way to trade with other gods, the materials for monuments would be much easier to get.

13-1: Fighting for a pizzaEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Cybele

Year 9042, January, Planet Reality

The first thing I did after defeating Nephthys was to go back to Hyperion. I could have gone back to Izanagi to buy a few humans from him, but before that I wanted to make a new monument. With the other monuments I had built so far, the first one was always the most effective for its size. The ones after that required a lot more materials and each additional one had to exceed the one before it in size. My shadow clones were also much better at building monuments than humans, so I had little need for them currently.
The next monument I wanted to build was a lighthouse - my own version of the Lighthouse of Alexandria. It had to be bigger than my other monuments with everlasting light. Its light would shine far and illuminate all my other monuments.

To achieve that, a lot of light was necessary; much more than I wanted to create by myself. It took me about as long to create a tiny bit of light as it did to create a whole Shadow Clone, so it was quite a waste of time to do it myself. Hyperion's specialty was to create light, and he was able to do it much faster than I was.

After reaching Zeppelin, I tracked down Hyperion in order to buy light from him. In the world where I was born, it would have sounded weird to buy light. Light was not something you could have stored. Here I had my aura and was able to store it within an aura ball. The light in this universe was also a bit different. It was similar to how electricity had been. Depending on how you used it, it could illuminate an area, turn into fire and burn everything it touched, or power up a device. Usually when I fired an aura ball, it vanished after a short time. But combined with the light, my aura balls were able to sustain their form for a long time. This created some sort of battery. Luckily my aura batteries were highly effective and I was able to use them to fuel my Space Dimension Device, otherwise the fuel would have been out a long time ago.
Hyperion was quite astonished when I showed him my divinity and agreed to trade his light for my divinity. However, it was not very cheap... For one tiny bit of light he wanted a more than I got from defeating an orc, or half as much as I gained from fighting a mummy. I had defeated a lot of them and left some of my clones there to fight them, but I needed a lot of light to create my lighthouse. I ended up trading more than half of the divinity I had for light, then I went to look for Itztli to buy stones. He traded me stones for the rest of the divinity I had left. He wanted about the same price as Hyperion took for light. Just like light, I also needed a lot of stones. Then I had my clones carry the stones to the Space Dimension Device, and I left for my monument planet.
Upon arriving at my monument planet, I saw that the clones I had left there were doing nothing. None of the stones, plants and water I had left there remained. But they had built eight more mighty statues and one more mystic garden. Because of that, my attack power and regeneration speed increased considerably. The human I had left there died again... My clones should have fed him, so he probably didn't die of starvation. Maybe out of boredom? I would probably never know, but I buried him at least.
Then I had my clones carry the stones and light out of the Space Dimension Device, and gave them instructions on how to build my everlasting lighthouse. The size of it had to be tremendous so I summoned as many clones as I could to build it. At that time I was able to summon more than ten thousand at once, and it took them almost three months to build it. But it was worth it. My creation power spiked after it was finished. Creation power increased the speed with which I could create things slightly, my stamina, and the offensive power of my aura ball. It was by far the most helpful monument yet.
When I took in the view of my new lighthouse from a distance, it shone brightly and far and even made all my other monuments appear in a different light...
Actually, it made the inaccuracies and mistakes of them much more apparent. While the monuments had proven to be quite effective at increasing my power, the architectural beauty still had a lot of room for improvement. But even the best architects had to start somewhere. I had time, and was sure to build many more monuments in the future.
The next monument I wanted to build was my version of the Statue of Zeus: "Godly Statue". I didn't know any Zeus in this universe and it was my goal to become the strongest god in this universe. So a statue of myself would have made the most sense if my mighty statues weren't already of myself.
I thought about making a statue of the strongest god in this universe to make it my goal to surpass her or him. But I didn't know who it was, and also, the idea of building a big statue of them felt too much like worshipping them. If I did that, it might even increase their power, so I decided against it.
I thought about it for a few more days, then I decided to still go with a statue of myself once more. This time with an aura surrounding me while I was creating a shadow clone. My mighty statues then would show my pre-godhood self, and the godly statues after I had become a god. It wasn't like I was really that conceited, but this way I could be sure it would only increase my own power and not someone else's.
I tried to make the new statue much bigger than my mighty statues, but it was not easy and I failed with my first attempt. After it became too tall, it fell apart and crumbled under its own weight. The stones I had were not durable enough to make a statue as enormous as it was in my imagination. This was a sign for me to search for the next god, Cybele. I heard from Nephthys that she was surrounded by mountains and she made them herself. Mountains can be really huge and they don't fall apart.
Thinking that obtaining her power was just what I needed to create my godly statue, I left the monument planet and came back to Reality once again.
Once I arrived there, I searched for the mountains and cave Nephthys mentioned a while ago. But what I found was not Cybele. Suddenly a lot of turtles appeared and blocked my way. They were much bigger than the turtles I knew of and they were able walk like humans! They also used weapons like swords, staffs or daggers. Some turtles a bit further away sat down and ate something. It looked similar to a pizza? That also made me a bit hungry, but it didn't seem like they would give me a piece. They started to attack me as soon as I came closer.
I backed off a bit and sent out some of my clones to fight them off. My first goal was now to get a few slices of that pizza. It had been decades since I last ate a pizza after all. They didn't make this easy though. They might have looked similar to turtles with their green skin color and their shells, but they were anything but slow, unlike the turtles I knew. They were quite agile and had fantastic teamwork. Their carapace was not only for show. It shielded them from all my clones' attacks, and it seemed to be just as unbreakable as Diana's defence felt when I fought her for the first time. The difference this time was that it was on their back only.
My clones had to hit them from the front to avoid their shield, but that was easier said than done. They shielded each other really well, there was no opening visible. Their shells didn't just block the attacks of my clones, they reflected their punches back and stunned them for a split second. A stunned clone was not much different than a dead clone; the short opening allowed another turtle to kill the clone without any effort. After fighting for half an hour, not a single clone had been able to hit one turtle from the front even once.
In the meantime, the pizza I had seen before was already gone, but it didn't take long until some other turtles brought a fresh supply of pizzas. Then the turtles who fought my clones went to eat the pizza while others blocked the way of my clones again. This meant I didn't have to worry; there would still be pizza once my clones defeated them. Even still, as it was now the fight was bound to be a long one. It was another wall I had to overcome. A really big one at that. The turtles were patient, but so was I. There was no way I would give up until I got their pizza, even if it took me years.
Observing their strategies was also a good way to improve my fighting prowess. Their shell was part of their body and seemingly just as strong as my reflection barrier. It still took me seconds to create my reflection barrier which created a big opening and made it hard to use in fights. The turtles always had their shield and were able to block anything within a millisecond. Thus I set myself another goal in addition to defeating the turtles and getting their pizza: train my reflection barrier to be able to use it just like they could use their shield.
Just as I suspected, it was a long fight:
- Not a single turtle defeated.
- Not a single slice of pizza.
- Millions of dead clones.
This was the result after three weeks of fighting.
At least I had improved my reflection barrier quite a bit. Instead of a few seconds, I could now create it and block an enemy attack within less than a second. It still meant that the turtles were almost a thousand times faster at blocking their incoming attacks than I was, at least if I compared their shells to my reflection barrier. My reaction speed by itself was superior to theirs, so dodging attacks or blocking them with my fist was faster than their shielding. But blocking with my fists would hurt myself more than an opponent. Dodging didn't do any damage, but their shields were able to stun an opponent. The main reason they could react with their shield so fast was that it was part of their body. I had to create my barrier first. I decided to try to copy them and make the reflection barrier as a part of my body. A shield as big as the turtle's would have taken up too much stamina to maintain the whole time, but sustaining two small ones like bracers seemed to be possible.
I tried different ways to create and maintain such small reflection barriers, but to no avail. After two more weeks, I gave up that idea. The small barrier couldn't reproduce the reflection effect and it also interfered with my aura. Then I just went back to improving the time it took to create a barrier. I was quite sure that creating it first and then blocking with it, I would never be able to match the speed with which the turtles were able use their shields, but I had come up with a solution. Instead of only improving the speed of creating the barrier, there were other ways to make it appear for the enemy to be faster than it really was.
For now I had ordered my clones to stop fighting the turtles because they still had no chance of winning. The next weeks I spent on concentrating to feel the air and the nature surrounding me, and my clones did the same. I closed my eyes and tried to feel everything surrounding me while some of my clones tried to attack me, and the rest of the clones split off into groups and went through the same exercise. This was to improve my prediction ability. If my clones could predict the way the turtles moved before they themselves did, it wouldn't matter how fast they could use their shield to block attacks, they'd still be able to score hits.
At first, this training looked like my clones would just slaughter each other. The ones who closed their eyes to try to predict incoming attacks had no chance. But that was about to change soon. As their concentration improved, they could feel the slight movements of the air.
Just feeling the movements in the air was not enough, though. They would need to feel it soon enough to be able to react, and then counter the movement. The punches were too fast for that, and the time after the motion of the air could be noticed was too short. At least when using their body to sense it. I switched back to training my defensive aura, until it was like an extension of the skin.
Combined with the deep concentration I had learned the weeks before that, it had increased the range the air movements I could detect up to a distance of 1-2 meters. This meant that in a close range fight, my clones were now able to know the movements of their opponent as soon as they started them. Not only the their opponents' moves, though, but also those of each other. So their teamwork also improved quite a bit, because they were aware of how they all moved without having to look at each other. I named this ability Clairvoyance. I had already trained and used a prediction ability when I fought the goblins before Gaia, but this Clairvoyance was a much improved version of it.
Then they started to fight the turtles again and it went much better than before. My clones now could feel their movements and their shield blocks became useless if my clones could predict it. However, the newly learned Clairvoyance ability was still not perfect. With the good teamwork of the turtles, they were still able to block most attacks. But once in a while my clones were able to attack them from the front where they were defenseless. Even from the front, their skin was thick and a few punches didn't defeat a turtle, but now it was possible to hurt them. It didn't take long after that until the first turtles were defeated. Then they were still able to hold on for a few more days as they brought countless reinforcements.
Finally a week later my clones succeeded in snatching away one of their pizzas! Since starting to train there, I had only eaten fruits from a nearby forest, so the pizza was a really welcome change. Maybe it was because it had been decades since I last had pizza, but it tasted delicious; much better than I remembered them being back on Earth.

13-2: The mountain goddessEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Cybele

Having reached my pizza goal, I continued to search for Cybele. Even without the pizza, I probably would have needed to defeat the turtles anyway. They had blocked the way into the cave ahead, which was now free. I entered the cave and sent out some of my clones to search the numerous passages. Cybele really was in the cave. About two hours later, my clones found her and I followed the path until I stood before her. Cybele had the power to create and control mountains and caves, so we were in her territory and a fight was bound to be hard, but I was prepared. I approached her, but just before I could call out my challenge, she closed off the path to her with a new wall.
Of course, something like that wouldn't stop me, so I smashed through it. But it was thick, like there never had been a passage on the other side of the wall. I pressed on further and further until the wall was gone. But then what I saw wasn't Cybele, but the sky! It seemed like she had closed off the whole cave, and I had created a new passage to the exterior of the mountain instead of connecting it to the path where Cybele had been before. Outside, the turtles were waiting for me and tried to attack, but by now my clones had no trouble beating them.
The bigger issue was to find Cybele once more, and to prevent her from running away again. I ordered my clones to surround the cave to find other entrances and search for her once more. This time, it took almost half a day until they found her again, but I was prepared a bit better. I figured hiding the whole day must have made her hungry, so I took another pizza from the turtles to offer it to her. I also had some clones observing her more closely in case she closed off the cave again.
When I appeared before her, she was about to close off the cave again, but before she was able to, I threw the pizza toward her. She caught the pizza and failed to close it off, and I ran to the pizza and took it away from her again. I told her: "If you want it, you have to fight against me!"
She instantly summoned a stone spear from the ceiling. It shot toward my right hand, which was holding the pizza. It surprised me a bit, but I managed to dodge it. This was not how I expected the answer, but more or less what I wanted. She didn't run away anymore and started to attack me, even if only to get the pizza.
Protecting the pizza while fighting her made it a bit harder for me to move, but it also made her attacks a bit more predictable. It also made it possible for me to lead her outside of the cave where I wasn't constrained by the walls and had more freedom, including the ability of use my flight. So the first thing I did was to punch through the cave until we were outside. It didn't last long. Maybe she didn't like the light of the outside that much, but she created another mountain on top of the cave. So, we were inside a new cave again and the mountain created another thick layer of stone to surround us. Now, the walls started to attack me with arrow-shaped stones. It wasn't too hard for me to dodge them, but it created a few openings and Cybele almost snatched away my pizza because of that.
It was really hard to attack her. She was able to control the mountain like her own body. When I tried to punch her, she instantly created a wall and when I punched through it, she wasn't there anymore. Then she appeared from somewhere else and tried to snatch away the pizza again... But my training to feel even the slightest movements in the air helped me a lot to detect her as soon as she appeared. I didn't have any blind spots and I could dodge all her attempts to attack me or steal the pizza. It still was more or less a stalemate. She played hide and seek so I couldn't touch her, and I dodged all her attacks. Then I tried to open up a way again, this time not in a horizontal direction like before, but upwards to the sky. I thought it might be harder for her to create another mountain on top of a mountain. At least, there was a limit to how high it could be.
This took me longer, and Cybele tried to prevent it a few times. Because she was able to manipulate the mountain at will, she was able to change the direction of the walls I smashed through. She could also manipulate the gravity inside the mountain, so instead of going upwards, I sometimes actually went sideways or even downwards. But this only confused me at the beginning. I still had some of my shadow clones outside of the mountain and I could communicate with them through telepathy and use that to stay oriented. While I was moving upwards, she kept making the mountain bigger, and she was even faster with that than I was at smashing through rock. But it didn't last forever. A few hours later I finally managed to reach the top where I saw the sky again.
Like I deduced, there was a limit to how big she could make the mountain. Outside, the air was already really thin and I couldn't see the bottom anymore. I estimated the altitude to be even higher than the mountain where I fought Shu. I wouldn't be able to breathe without my aura here. Cybele also followed me outside shooting arrows of stone at me, but now outside of the mountain, it was really easy to dodge them. She had lost her terrain advantage and she couldn't fly, so the fight from there on was quite easy. It wasn't even really a fight anymore. A short while into the fight, she simply collapsed. Was the air too thin for her, I wondered? When I flew to her, I could hear her voice faintly saying: "Need... food...", and the loud growling of her stomach.
I wasn't sure if this really counted as a victory, but I'd managed to get out of her mountain and she had collapsed with no will to fight left. I had managed to keep the pizza out of harm's way, so it was still in one piece. I ended the fight there and gave her the pizza. She hastily took it from me. Then she kept her distance and slowly ate it while looking at me with a wary face. After she finished the pizza, she asked me what I want from her. I answered her that I was looking for strong gods to challenge. My dream was to become the strongest of them all. Then I tried to challenge her again because this didn't feel like a true victory, but she declined. She told me that I'd won already. A new fight would be too bothersome.
She was about to leave, but I asked her if she would teach me how to create and manipulate mountains. It was a great power and I needed it to build my godly statue. As she was about to decline again, I offered to give her all the pizzas she wanted, and also showed off my divinity and tried to buy a few of her mountains. She was interested in my offer, but it turned out she wanted twice as much divinity as I had for a single mountain... I told her I would have that the next time I saw her.
Three months later, I was able to create a mountain. She didn't want to tell me how she was able to summon that much stone at once, and I was still quite slow at it, but that was as far as she wanted to teach me.
"Only a stupid god would reveal all their secrets to someone else", she said and then disappeared without a trace.
At least, she told me where to find the next god I had to defeat. It was Artemis. She had created all the trees and forests on Reality. She usually moved around from forest to forest and would appear sooner or later if I just waited long enough at one of the forests.
Before doing that, I left for my monument planet again. I wanted to build at least one of my godly statues first.

14-1: The glowing apesEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Artemis

Year 9045, May, Planet Reality

After arriving at my "Monuments Planet", I went to my other monuments and inspected the progress my clones have made while I was away. They had finished a total of forty-seven Mighty Statues but due to a few mistakes made in the process, only thirty-two were effective statues. The fifteen defective statues out of the forty-seven were useless as they did not increase my power at all. I had to order my clones to destroy all the fifteen useless ones in order to rebuild them.
My clones had also built a few more Mystic Gardens; but no Tombs of Gods nor Everlasting Lighthouses because I did not leave them with sufficient resources to build them.
Now with my mountain on board, I let my clones carry it down to the surface to build my next monument — the Godly Statue. With the mountain, the task was much easier than before. The mountain's structure was much more stable compared with building it only with individual stones. The mountain was also big enough that my clones simply sculpted the entire statue out of it. They made mistakes once in a while, and had to patch it up with water and stones, but two weeks later, it ended up as a success! It wasn't just similar to my other monuments, it was better — I could actually feel my power surge!
The fact, that the surge was not only for a particular area of my power, made it even better. EVERY aspect ranging from my destructive power, regeneration power, stamina, and even creation power did increase! I felt several times stronger than ever before.
However, it used up most of my resources, so it was not possible to build another. This especially applied when additional monuments of the same kind had to be much bigger than previous ones to take effect which scaled up the cost quite a lot.
Before heading back to Reality, I ordered my clones to build a few more of the Mighty Statues and Mystic Gardens as they were cheaper to build. Once back on Reality I searched for the biggest forest I could find to hunt for signs of Artemis. As usual, I summoned many clones at once and let them to scout the area - or rather the forest.
After waiting for two hours, I didn't hear anything from my clones; nor did any of my clones come back. I didn't even know what had happened to them as I wasn't able to communicate with any of them. I couldn't even feel them anymore! I suspected that they were all killed.
The Forest was so big and dense that it was not possible to see far into it from the outside at all. Even from above in the air, I could only see the treetops. Each tree look bigger than the previous. It also didn't help that everything was green. The trees simply looked like a huge, green barrier from above. The only thing missing here was the ability of the trees to move; or to spread their branches to attack outsiders like in a typical horror movie. I reckoned the real attackers who killed all my clones had to be residing underneath that canopy of green.
Once again, I decided to summon my clones, only this time not as many as I did before. This way, I could concentrate and stay connected to their minds while waiting outside of the Forest.
Although, I had improved my concentration and sensitized my feeling of the surroundings a lot when I fought Cybele previously, it was hard to feel movements inside the Forest. The numerous trees blocked out most of my Clairvoyance ability and I was only able to sense the movements of my clones a little, and only when they were not too far into the Forest.
Even this small feat was only achievable when I focused extremely on a few clones. This was both exhausting and a difficult task to accomplish. Additionally, I still preferred to stay out of the forest because of the unknown dangers that could have awaited me inside. I didn't wish to take unnecessary risks.
Suddenly I felt my first clone being taken out. I sensed that a human-like creature attacked it from nowhere, killed it, then disappeared. They looked similar to humans, but have a lot of hair and a tail — so I imagined them to be better described as apes. They had been hiding in the Forest and seemingly good at striking weak points. The trees masked their presence quite well and my clones could not detect them at all.
Usually, my clones could sense any movement in the air or feel the body warmth of others, but that was impossible in this darned Forest! After every initial attack, they would not go back to hiding but fought at full power until a clone was defeated. Only then, they went back hiding again.
After all my clones were killed from the apes, I decided to change my strategy. The forest was really dense and disrupted the fighting ability of my clones a lot. I came to the conclusion that the Forest simply had to be gone! Burning the forest down with my aura balls had to be much faster than searching through the whole forest.
Back in my own universe I would have never done something like this. Trees and forests have been really rare before all the planets were destroyed — it was the main reason why everything died. I certainly did not want to be the same as the covetous, miserly, money-grubbers back then...
That thought did make me wonder if I had already turned into a bad guy in this universe. I had fought a lot, killed innumerable monsters, challenged gods and disrupted their daily life. Maybe in the perspective of the other gods, I was a bad guy. Hmmm…
Although, It was not possible to compare this universe too much to my own. It was very different. This universe was also boring. Other than a few gods I had met, there was basically no other life-form who was able to talk or communicate with me. There was also no form of entertainment or any technology. The only "technology" available was the space dimension device I had arrived with. It was really big with a lot of technology and had various different forms of entertainment on board. Still, it was no fun all alone.
The other gods also did not really accept me as one of their own and ignored me most of the time. I could have forced the gods I had beaten to do something for me, but that was not the kind of entertainment I wanted. This could have even led into a war with the gods, but I was sure that there were still a lot of gods who were stronger than me. At that time, there was no way I could have survived in an all-out war.
I was able to create humans and could have done something similar to Izanagi: teach them stuff and rule over them.
However, I had bigger goals in sight! For a start, I wanted to make my own planet. Then make all the creations even the strongest gods could make on my own. I also wanted to become the strongest of them all.
Creating my own universe also sounded nice, although I wondered if it is an impossible goal. "No!" I shrugged this doubt off my mind. One should always aim high, and nothing seemed to be impossible for me. I had already learnt so much and could do things I would have never imagined when I had first arrived in this universe.
Back to the fight with Artemis. In this universe, I figured that gods are able to create about anything within a short span of time. So I reckoned that even burning down this entire forest would not be a big issue other than probably angering Artemis quite a bit.
Nonetheless, I decided to live with the consequences by going ahead and risking it all. I planed to make up to Artemis for that action after the fight. Once I made up my mind, I started surrounding the entire forest with shadow clones ready to fire my Armageddon of aura balls.
The forest caught fire easily after the first, and last wave of aura balls. Before they were able to fire their second wave, the apes stormed out of the forest. They were angry... really angry! When they were all outside, all of them suddenly released a humongous aura! Their aura also seemed to be much, much stronger than my own. The aura effect also made their hair glow blonde, and themselves shiny — the least of my problems. With all their auras combined in such a small place shook the entire area.
Now their presence really appeared overwhelming. Previously I thought that though while they might be strong within the forest, but not much stronger than my clones. I was sure my clones would have beaten them in time; perhaps with a bit more training. Now it felt completely different. I was sure that they would crush my clones like bugs. Even I would have probably lost in a fight against just one ape. Here, there were thousands of them!
Just when I was about to retreat, the apes created big streams of energy with their hands and fired it at my clones. All of them were decimated almost instantly. I teleported away as fast as I could, but the reach of their energy streams was undeniably too far. It easily hit me. By the time I noticed the damage, half of my body was already charred and vaporized. It happened so swiftly that I did not even felt any pain! When I saw my body's condition, I was sure to die within a few seconds... I had to act fast and rebirth now, so I concentrated all the power I had left into my new body. Luckily, the apes did not follow me. They must have probably gone back to extinguish the flames of their home.
This was the first time I ever saw a monster transforming to become much stronger. Not even a god was able to do it in the way the apes did! It also made me notice how my own aura was still lacking. My own aura was really useful and helped me a lot, but it did not increase my power by that much. Still, I was really lucky to be able to rebirth fast enough. I would have been gone for good by perhaps even a second later. It also shuddered me to think that the apes' energy stream could have also hit my head instead... But there was no time to worry because after rebirthing the whole planet was very dangerous for me. I went back to my space dimension device as quickly as I could and was able to do so without running into any other gods or monsters.
Once back at my entertaining home, I went back to Zeppelin to fight Hyperion once more. I had already rebirthed a few times, so I knew exactly what to do and fought one god after another without any trouble.. that is until I reached Izanagi. Even if they did not recognize me at all, most of them did not even try to fight me and just gave up after feeling the power difference between me and them. When I asked one god if they could remember anything about me in my previous life, or even another god who challenged them, he replied that the doesn't know what I'm talking about.
I had previously thought that rebirthing would make me stronger than my previous life but the fight with Izanagi was beginning to feel really arduous. It did not feel like I was any stronger than the last time. I had let my clones fight and train not as much as previously yet, but compared to the last rebirth before this one, it did not feel like I received any power boost through this rebirth.
After the fight with Izanagi, I decided to revisit my monument planet. There I found out something even more horrifying: ALL the monuments I had built in my previous life were completely gone! There was absolutely no trace left! All the stones and the other creations I had painfully brought to this planet were not there anymore. It seemed like my previous being did not even exist before. It was like all my fights never happened before and I had never build any monument in the first place. Thankfully I still had my original memories and I knew for sure that I had existed, and all these were not a dream.
With the monuments gone, it dawned upon me why I had such a hard time fighting Izanagi. The last time when I had fought him, I already had some monuments to give me a power boost whereas I had none of the monuments built this time. That meant in reality I had actually become a lot stronger than before because the power I had now (without the monuments) was comparable to the power I had in my previous life (with the monument boosts). This might just be the boost I needed for my clones to be able to defeat the apes in their aura form.
While I was sad to know that my old monuments were lost; I was also happy and exited about building them again to feel that power surge to me again. Sadly the measuring tool I got from Nephthys the last time did not work anymore. So it was not possible to use my divinity to buy stones for my monuments yet. I also lost all the divinity I had in my previous life which meant my clones had to fight more monsters — necessary for strengthening myself anyway.
Since I did not feel strong enough to beat Nephthys without any monuments; I decided to create enough stones for a few Mighty Statues and at least one Mystic Garden by myself before I made my way to fight her again. I also noticed that other than my basic power and memories, there was something else I still kept from my last life. After defeating gods for the first time, I always felt like a part of their power went over to me. It was similar to the divinity my clones got from monsters, but something much bigger and more powerful. Unfortunately, I had only felt that the first time I defeated each god but not anymore after I defeated them again in my new life. Until that time I was not able to find any use for it but I felt that unlike divinity, I could use it in some way to boost my own power. Because I received it from other gods, I decided to call it "God Power". While my clones were building my new monuments, I tried different ways to harness this God Power.
A few weeks passed and I was still unable to figure out the God Power. It was at that time that I simply wanted to create the stones, water, plants or anything else required, faster than before, so my clones could finish the monuments sooner. I did not want to waste any more time than required, so I just opened my mouth and ate this God Power. It did not taste like anything but it felt warm. In fact, my whole body felt warm as a result of eating it.
With all my concentration, I began to wish for things to be created faster, and it really helped! I was actually able to create my next stones slightly faster!
The improvement was not much — barely noticeable to be honest; but it was there. I was not totally sure if the god power was the cause, but I had created thousands of stones before and the speed of creating them was pretty much the same every time. Well actually I had summoned the stones from my asteroid friends, but I still had to call them one at a time and the whole procedure took some time. To make sure the god power I just ate was the reason for it, I ate another one. It turned out to be true! My speed in creating things really improved by a bit! Light, Stones, Soil, Air, Water and even Shadow Clones! This seemed really useful, so I ate all my other God Power at once. With eating all of them, my speed to create things turned out to be about 40% faster than before.
Too bad I only had twelve of them... perhaps I ate them too hastily? They were not easy to get... Nevertheless, I had the feeling that I was just at the beginning of my journey and there were surely other ways to get more of them. For the time being, creating everything 40% faster was a big help!

14-2: The revengeEdit

Prerequisite: Defeat Artemis

Shortly after the first monuments were finished, I went back to Reality to defeat the pizza fre... I mean Cybele again. With a similar strategy to before I was able to win the fight again, only much faster. That improvement to my creation speed undoubtedly helped with my first mountain. Then I approached the forest with the apes again... only this time I was a bit more careful and kept my distance.
The forest was surrounded by only plains so there was no decent hiding place outside of it. Then I had the idea to create a new mountain, and so my own hiding place. I created it about two kilometers away from the forest. Thereafter, I hid on top of the mountain where I could still see the forest and started sending my clones to the front again. Unquestionably, I wanted to test the strengths of my clones to see how much they had improved since the last match, so I commanded them to fire all their aura balls to burn the forest again.
Just like expected, the apes glowed again and fired their energy stream away. This time, my clones were prepared and fired their own aura balls to counter the streams but sadly failed to stop the apes' streams. The aura balls were only able to block the streams for a split-second whilst the streams were long-lasting, disintegrating the aura balls briskly after the initial impact.
This was not as I hoped but was nevertheless anticipated, and my clones were prepared for that - most of them were able to disengage, fly away and dodge the streams in time.
The energy streams were surely powerful and could easily kill my clones; but it was in a straight line. Through my observations from afar, while the apes could change the direction of the streams, it was not that hard to predict and dodge them. It also took them some time to prepare the streams which created a window of opportunity for my clones to shorten the distance to fight the apes in close combat. The aura stream was a long range attack so the apes could not use it in close combat. This rendered this attack useless after my clones were close enough.
Even so, it still was not easy to fight the apes. The aura streams were not their only attack as they were also really strong physically - stronger than any of my clones. It took them only a few minutes to take out all the clones I have sent to fight them.
Luckily, none of the apes noticed me at all as I was still two kilometers away, hiding behind my observation post — my very own mountain. The apes quickly went back to their forest to extinguish the fire after the fight. It took them about half an hour before they disappeared in the forest again.
I watched them closely the whole time while taking down some important notes. After working out a new strategy, I sent my clones out again. This time, my goal was not only to let them win against the apes, but also learn the way they could transform using a similar aura. I was thinking, "Improving my own aura to the extent to be as effective as theirs will surely boost my own power substantially." So, I set up a few thousand clones further away, making sure the apes have no ways of noticing them, having them constantly improve their aura; while my other clones fought the apes. In this way, my clones' aura improved by a little bit every time the apes killed my clones.
Two weeks later, my clones were finally able to defeat some of the apes, but my own aura was still nowhere as strong as theirs. My clones were only able to win because their base power was higher than that of the apes'. I wanted to keep up this for a few more weeks but that plan was soon crushed.
Artemis herself showed up and killed all my clones with just the act of appearing. Unfortunately for me, she was not as foolish as the apes who simply went back after each battle — she actually investigated the cause of the clones' appearance. It did not take her long to trace it back to me.
Artemis walked towards me, slowly and was that a smile on her face? After what I did to her Forest, I would have expected her to be somewhat angry; but there she was smiling as if nothing has happened and kept coming closer. Initially, I too, started walking towards her wanting to greet her; but stopping almost immediately when I had an ominous feeling. Her smile was not a happy nor nice one. It was alluring and somehow creepy. It was as if she did not only want a conversation with me, she wanted to trap me in her fangs and catch me like a prey. She did appear totally confident in her own powers, like she would never lose to me; I would not pose a threat nor even be able to escape form her.
My body suddenly reacted by itself and took a few steps back — and before I knew it, I was completely surrounded by a big forest! This caught me by surprise. Only minutes earlier, there wasn't even a single tree there! And just like tentacles, the branches of the trees shot towards me and tried to catch me.
Luckily for me and unknowing to her, going back or forth was not my only option; I was also able to react fast enough by teleporting into the air like a missile. She looked slightly confused initially but quickly responded by being in the air only a couple of seconds later, she was just a few meters away from me and almost caught me.
I was able to quickly dodge her attack, but certainly did not expect her to create seven trees in mid-air at the same time. While the trees could not fly and gravity pulled them back to the ground, it did not stop them from shooting their branches after me to take me down with them! I managed to dodge most but one of them did catch my foot and it dragged me down along with the tree it belonged to.
Back on the ground, there were already thousands of branches waiting to catch and bind me to the ground. Falling down and letting them catch me could have spelled the end of me, but I wasn't that weak and easily pulled down. While the tree initially surprised me a bit and dragged me down a few meters, it was relatively easy for me to stay afloat in the air. Then I started to fly upwards again, even with the tree tangled on my foot. The tree was quite big and probably weighed a ton but that was not anything I could not carry. Although the weight was not that much of a problem for me, it was a bit bothersome so I shot an aura ball to free myself from it.
With all that fighting against the trees, I somehow lost sight of Artemis which was the bigger problem for now. Then the skies became dark suddenly and I looked upwards. I thought I must have seen it wrongly at first, there was a mountain falling from the skies... A mountain!
How the hell could a mountain just appear in mid-air? It probably was only a few seconds left until the impact and I was sure I would not have survived a mountain falling on top of my head. A few hundred meters in front of me, I noticed Artemis floating in mid-air with an evil laugh. The whole ground was still surrounded with the forest, their branches were ready to attack and bind me on all sides.
There and then, a thought came to my mind, possibly stupid — would my reflection barrier reflect the mountain? There was not much of a choice so I just created one. I have previously trained that skill quite a lot, so I could create one fast enough. However, knowing that holding it myself or leaving it alone would have probably crushed me from the impact, I did not hesitate to fire a few aura balls as fast as I could, together with my barrier. It launched the duo against the mountain with a high speed while I teleported myself to the opposite direction as fast as possible. The trees still blocked me on my teleportation path so I shot a few aura balls in front of me to open up the way.
A few seconds afterwards, I felt the impact shockwaves of that mountain. Although I was able to escape the mountain itself, the impact’s tremendously powerful shockwaves threw me a few kilometers away. The shockwaves shook me quite a bit even though my aura was able to protect me from the impacts' worst damages. This thankfully left me with only small insignificant injuries. When I looked behind me, there were still trees, stones, and other objects flying towards me from the impact. I could easily block them so they did not cause me much of a problem; on the other hand, they did block most of the view.
It took me quite a while before I was able to see all the damages it did, and of course more importantly, I asked myself, what happened to Artemis? I knew that my reflection barrier caused the mountain to go slightly off course, from where I was, to where Artemis was floating. She probably did not expect that move and might have been hit, so I searched for her. Did she dodge? Was she unharmed and has started another attack on me already? Or did she get hit and perhaps even having died from the impact?
Half an hour passed and I did not notice any further attacks from Artemis. Neither have I found her yet. The chances were high that she was at least hurt and unable to attack me anymore. The view also started to clear up and I was able to see the whole area a bit better. The mountain has caused quite a huge crater and there was not much left of the forest. Maybe Artemis overestimated herself quite a fair bit? I mean creating a mountain in mid-air and letting it fall down only a few meters from her... that sounded almost suicidal to me, unless she had some way to block a mountain from falling on her. On the other hand, she probably would have started to attack me again if she had a counter-measure.
With all the dust, broken trees and stones lying around the area, it was really hard to find someone as small as a god like Artemis. That was if I had to search for her by myself. I quickly summoned a lot of clones to let them search through the entire area. It took them almost an hour before they finally found her. She was lying unconscious between a dozen of broken trees, which must have protected her from the worst. She was still alive, breathing, did not lose any limbs or too much blood, although it seemed like she had broken a few bones.
I was not sure what to expect when she would wake up again so after tending her wounds, I bound her on a mountain to prevent her from attacking me again after regaining consciousness. Sure, given her broken bones, severely being weakened, it would have been hard for her to attack me again, but she appeared to be really deceitful and might have used every chance to do so. Better be safe than sorry!
I waited for another hour before she regained consciousness. She smiled again as if nothing had happened... She tried to convince me to free her with some sweet talk. I agreed to it if she would tell me where I could find the next stronger god, and his or her name. She told me it was Eros. She described him as a creepy bugger, always talking about love and passion. He went after her once and she tried to fight him off, but lost because of his malicious behavior.
I was not sure if I should believe her description of him, but at least his name and the directions sounded true. I saw her fighting style and feared her to attack me, while teaching me, if I would have asked her to do so, so I did not do it. I was already able to create trees — which can be combined into a forest; and her ability to create mountains was nothing new for me. I decided it was not worth the risk to stay with her any longer and went away. I did not free her myself but left a shadow clone to unbind her after I was out of range, going onwards to my next target: Eros

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