Episode 1: A merciless terror revived!
(Note: I do not own the rights to Jackie Chan Adventures or any sort of possession to the property, this is just a fan story made up for the sake of fun that would really like it if it didn't up sued for anything, thank you.)
The Plane touched down on the Hong Kong airway at about noon. It was an over 14 hour flight in coach seats with two twin crying babies behind them but to Jackie the entire trip would be worth the amazing opportunity that were waiting for him in China. Though not everyone was so thrilled…
"Jackie!" Uncle yelled while walking behind Jackie, who had a backpack slung over his shoulder and was rolling a dark blue luggage case with his other hand while uncle only hand a brown satchel slung over his shoulder. "That flight was terrible! Uncle could not get any sleep!"
"I'm sorry to hear that Uncle…" Jackie said as he kept walking along threw the airport, past the crowds of people moving to and from flights. Over the years he had learned to just allow Uncle to let out all the things that bothered him, even though that was so many things.
"One more thing, Seats were very stiff. Uncle's back in is knots! One more thing, food on flight was awful! We must find shop that sells mung beans so Uncle can make a sandwich! One more thing…" Uncle then did his traditional two finger smack on Jackie's head, which made Jackie let out a soft "Ow!"
"Why did you get mad when uncle silence whiny brats?" Uncle asked with a raised brow showing over his glasses.
"Because you cannot yell at babies Uncle, their parents were furious!"
"Bah! Parents should learn to control their children!" Uncle said in response which made Jackie decide it best to give up, arguing with Uncle was almost always futile.
"Jackie! Uncle!" Jade called out from about ten feet ahead of them, she was looking around for the main entrance signs and was getting tired of waiting for the two to just stroll along behind her. "Hurry up already, their probably waiting for us!"
"We'll be right there Jade." Jackie said with a smile, happy to see Jade excited to be back home. He hurried his pace for a moment until he heard from behind him…
"Jackie! Why you walk so fast? You think Uncle is running marathon?!"
The three eventually exit the airport with and wait in front of the main entrance. Jade taps her foot impatiently, keeping the green backpack keeping her extra hoodie and Super Moose comics beside her feet as she stood between Jackie and Uncle. Her face then lit up with excitement as she saw the very familiar gray car pulled up with two very familiar people stepping out of it to greet them.
"Mom, Dad!" Jade said happily as she ran over to her mom, who knelt down so she could easily receive a big hug from her daughter.
"Hello Jade." Jade's mother, Mei said as she hugged her little girl. "I hope you've been good while staying with Uncle Jackie." Her mother said cheerfully.
"Of course, I'm an angel right Jackie?" Jade said as she looked at Jackie with her best sweet smile.
"Oh yes…an angel." Jackie with a slight roll of his eyes, if only her parents knew just how much of a hassle she could be at times. But his thoughts of Jade's constant antics were interrupted.
"Speaking of Jackie I hear you've got quite the opportunity on your hands here." His cousin Shen said as he gave Jackie a friendly hand shake. "I'm glad it let you bring Jade over to see us."
"So am I, I thought she would enjoy it more than watching the shop with Toru." Jackie replied as he admired Shen's new black, fitted suit. "I see your doing well for yourself"
"Business has been good this past month, we even bought a big screen TV for the house." Shen said proudly.
"You did? Awesome!" Jade said excitedly in response "What are we waiting for then? Let's go check this thing out."
"We will soon Jade." Mei said as she turned to Uncle "So Uncle, have you come along to see the sights or maybe assist Jackie?"
"No, Uncle plans to find more Chinese piece's for his shop." Uncle replied as he overlooked the car, probably to see if it would be any more comfortable then the plane seats.
"And I plan to meet with the other archaeologists first thing in the morning." Jackie said as he loaded the luggage into the back of the car. "After a nice meal with my family tonight."
Dinner was excellent; Jackie especially enjoyed Mei's seasoned beef mixed into her stir-fry. Being away from the family for so long he forgot his sister in law was a top notch cook. The rest of the night was spent by Jackie looking into his latest expedition, Uncle asking Shen and Mei about all the best antique shops in the city and Jade using the new Flat screen to watch one of her favorite Kung Fu movies, Fists of the Young Master.
The following morning everyone enjoyed a big breakfast. (Besides Uncle, who complained about his tea being too hot) Jackie then caught a cab to the Hong Kong Museum of History to meet up with Dr. Ling, the head of the archaeological staff that works to find pieces for the museum. Dr. Ling was a slightly older then middle aged man, with the top of his head having only a graying comb over that actually went well with his gray suit and tie. He was an overall pleasant fellow who was thrilled to see his friend Jackie, who he had worked with a few times in his recovery of Chinese artifacts. Now the two of them had the chance to uncover something that would mark a monumental discovery in world of archaeology.
"Welcome Jackie. I hope you had a good flight from San Francisco" Dr. Ling said as Jackie walked through the glass doors of the museum, not in his usual outfit of a blue sweater and beige pants but in his field gear outfit, which consisted of a light brown buttoned shirt with darker pants, as well as hiking boots.
"It could have been quieter, but I don't mind." Jackie said as he shook Dr. Ling's hand.
"Are we all set to head out?"
"Yes, the equipment is all loaded into the vans and everyone in waiting for us just outside of the city. We'll take my car to them."
"Sound's good." Jackie said back. "I hope this find is everything we are hoping for."
"As do I Jackie." Dr. Ling said with a smile and nod of his head in agreement. "Now let's be off."
Outside of Hong Kong they met with the expedition team, consisting of about twenty people. A few of whom Jackie had worked with on other finds. They all got into dark blue vans in groups of four with each van responsible for taking some equipment, texts, and whatever else may be needed. They drove out west into the Qinling mountain range, where a large storm has just hit and unknown to most had also uncovered something very interesting.
What was uncovered though was not quite accessible by road, so the group had to go on foot from the base of the mountain and make their way to the spot where lightning apparently struck. They found a cliff side with a large chunk in the middle that almost looked like it had dynamite used on it, but it was definitely where the lightning struck because Dr. Ling saw something very familiar within the rocks.
"Look, there in the struck part of the rock! There is some sort of structure!" Dr. Ling as he pointed out what looked like the edge of a roof with a wall under it in the blasted part of the mountainside. "I knew my eyes didn't deceive me when I first took pictures from afar." He said proudly as Jackie stepped in front of him to overlook it himself.
"There's no doubt there is something big in there." Jackie said as he looked at the whole mountain side in front of them, then to the whole that was about twenty feet above them.
"We'll need a good toss for a rope hook to stay on there" One of the men involved in the dig commented.
"Maybe not." Jackie said with a small smirk in his smile as he planned out his steps. "Everyone wait here."
Jackie ran forward, he quickly and skillfully jumped and climbed up one outstretched rock and indented spot in the cliff side after another. In not even a minute he was sitting in the blasted part of the mountain. Waving down to everyone below him who were all in slight awe at Jackie's skill.
"Ok, Toss up the ropes!" He called down to them.
Their best way into the unknown structure was to carefully remove the tiles from the roof to make it easier to kick in a big enough hole in the edge of the it to let people slide down to the floor from another rope. The inside was pitch black though, so Jackie went in first followed by four other people with flashlights. When they did illuminate the place though, they all were left with their mouths open in awe at their surroundings.
"Whoa…" Jackie whispered as his eyes took in what was in front of them.
They were definitely in somewhere big and luxurious. Not only did the hall they landed into stretch down the length of about half a football field, but the hall itself was full of treasures. The four support pillars holding the hall in place were plated with golden dragons spiraling down them, along each long wall were dozens of suits of the finest Chinese armor Jackie had ever seen and on the walls were also a dozen amazing paintings as large as tapestries depicting great battles being fought and great victories being celebrated.
Everyone started to come down once lamps were placed around the area to keep the room bright. This allowed Jackie to better see the finely woven green carpet running down from the halls entrance down to the other end, which lead to an extravagant golden throne Dr. Ling was dusting off carefully in hopes of finding any sort of mark or writing on it.
"Jackie, do know what this place is?" Dr. Ling asked with a thrilled expression as he looked up to Jackie. "All the artwork bears his resemblance in books as does this throne fits the description of the one he possessed."
"I know. It's hard to believe we've uncovered something like this…" Jackie looked down the entire hall, at all the people working hard to uncover part of a countries history that was originally thought to be lost forever. "We are standing in the Palace of the Tang Emperor"
"The man who held China in his iron fist for 20 years…"Dr. Ling said as he looked at one of the painting depicting a victory feast. "Who's army defeated all who stood before in resistance of his conquest, no matter what the odds were against them…" Ling turned back to Jackie, who was eyeing one of the suits of armor below the artwork.
"Did legend not say his palace was condemned and lost?" Ling asked.
"Yes, after he was finally defeated by the rebel movement against him legend says this place was destroyed and his grand army shattered." Jackie said in confirmation.
While the two talked more about what they read in their history texts, a blonde woman with her hair tied back and glasses was carefully running her hand along the wall behind the throne. But when she turned around she noticed a small inscription on a square tile on the back of the throne that translated to "The gateway to strength" She was curious, and lightly put her hand on it but unintentionally ended up pushing it into the throne. A second afterword everyone turned their heads to the loud sound of stone grinding against stone as a six foot tall rectangle in the wall behind the throne slid away out of sight to reveal a dark staircase on the other side.
"Mr. Chan, Dr. Ling. Come see this!" the woman called out frantically to them.
The stairway was wide enough for five or six people to walk side by side but for the sake of caution Jackie suggested only half of the group come down and do so in a single file line. They moved slowly down the dusty stone steps, descending what must have been at least twenty feet before stepping into a very dark lower chamber. It was so dark Jackie's lantern only illuminated the stone tile floor a few feet in front of them.
"Be careful everyone, this place could have any sort of trap or even just a hole in the floor." Jackie said as he turned his head back to the group behind him.
"Don't worry Jackie," Dr. Ling insisted as he stepped beside him. "We will be sure to use the utmost caution."
Though when Dr. Ling took one more step forward and turned on his flashlight, he would make a few members of the group jump back a bit once he walked right into some sort of statue.
"Are you alright?" Jackie asked with concern as saw Dr. Ling holding his sore nose.
"Yes I'm fine, thank you though." Dr. Ling replied as he shook off the small pain on his nose and forehead." But everyone, look at this…" Dr. Ling said softly in amazement, the statue he ran into was what appeared to be a heavily armored foot soldier with its back turned to them. The carving of its armor mimicked a suit made of dense scale armor with the left hand to its side and the right one holding a long Kwan Dao beside him. What would be even more of a shock though was just how many of these there were.
"My word…" One older, English fellow working with Oxford said as he and the others split into two groups of five and walked down each side of the lower sanctum. Each group would see a row of these stretching beside the one they first found for what seemed like half a mile. When the two groups got to the sanctums walls they saw it continued downward for some time with tightly formed rows of these statues seeming to stretch all the way down, meaning these things took up the whole square center of this chamber.
"Jackie, legends said that the emperors legion were some of the finest trained warriors in history…could he really have made a statue for each of them?" Dr. Ling pondered as he observed the amazing craftsmanship in each stone soldier. "Though how many stone workers would they need for thousands, I wonder."
"As do I" Jackie said in agreement "I will go get the others, we will need some extra hands for all of these."
It took about an hour and a half for the rest of the team to assemble everything needed in the chamber below. But they soon had enough lights set up there to not have to rely on their flashlights and lamps as much.
With the better vision of the place they could see it was massive, while above was a massive hallway down below seemed to be a perfectly square room that was perhaps three times the size of what lied upstairs, likely to house all the statues.
"Jackie, if our math is right there are exactly one hundred rows of one hundred stone soldiers." The woman who had previously found the passageway below said as he carefully brushed off one of the statues legs to better see the fine carving of the grieves and boots. Whoever made these made them without a single flaw.
"Wow….10, 000" Jackie said before getting small grin at a thought. "It will be hard to fit all of these into the museum" he commented jokingly.
"Jackie, come quickly!" Dr. Ling called out from across the room, he and the rest of the team had finally set up the lights on that side and it let them spy something intriguing.
Jackie quickly walked down the side walkway to the front of the army; where he could finally see the last row, though that was not what caught everyone's interest. But when Jackie saw what did he quickly understood why.
These ten thousand statues were all facing one figure, a strange statue though that was not like them at all. This figure showed a well-built man on his knees, his head hanging and looking to the floor like one who was exhausted and the arms oddly enough were at his sides but were spread slightly due to the heavy, steel chains that bound his wrists and hooked firmly into the floor just below his shackled hands.
"Jackie." Dr. Ling said to Jackie while keeping his delighted eyes on the statue in front of them. "If behind us is the army then you know who this is meant to be, right?"
"Yes, I do." Jackie said looking at the statue that gave him an almost…ominous feeling. "The Tang Emperor…Zhao Li Tian"
"This is unbelievable .The detail in this is unlike anything I've seen." Dr. Ling commented as he knelt down to see the statue's face, which showed an expression that could only be described as cold and determined. "But I think this means this was not the work of the emperors men."
"I believe you are right." Jackie said with a nod "I doubt he would want himself depicted as a prisoner like this, with not even a shirt to cover him." Jackie added as he noticed the detail in the sculptures body features, if this piece was to his actual likeness then the emperor was in unbelievable shape in his time.
"Well at least his hair was ti...what this?" Dr. Ling asked him after walking behind the statue to see the long ponytail running down his back but something eye caught his eye. "Jackie, there's writing on his back."
"Really?" Jackie said as he walked around to see, and it was true. There were two sets of Chinese symbols placed to the left and the right of where the outline of the spine ran down. These symbols read top to bottom in one by one lines. But when Jackie translated the messages he did not like what it read out to be.
"Dr. Ling, this is a rather disturbing message." Jackie said with a worried look, these are the kind of inscriptions that could lead to the kind of trouble he was all too familiar with, the very dangerous kind.
"What does it say?" One of the team members asked. By now everyone had gathered in front of the stone to watch the two archaeologists examine the emperor's statue.
"Perhaps we should translate it later…" Jackie said innocently as he stepped in front of the statue to address them all. "After we know this place is completely safe that is."
"We've already translated it Jackie" Dr. Ling said back with a confused look. "It clearly says "When I am revived, all will bow to me."
Before Jackie could comment back, his eyes caught something he couldn't believe. Neither did anyone standing behind him or Mr. Ling who had jumped back so much he was now laying behind the statue as they watched the fists of the statue slowly open while it's fingers seemed feel the air around them. Then everyone but Jackie took a step back in fear as the statue's head rose, revealing a face of pure rage that was actually cracking with a green, flaming aura emitting from the cracks as well as its blazing eyes.
"Bad day…" Jackie said softly as the statue slowly rose to its feet. It looked down to see its arms still hanging down from the chains. The statue clenched it's fists which caused more glowing cracks to appear along its forearms right before it pulled upward to make the chains snap from their base. The cracks were now all over the body, with aura radiating such light and heat Jackie had to step back and use his hand to shade his eyes. The statue looked down at its now flaming fist for a moment, and then gave frightening roar as it slammed its fist down to the floor which made tiny shards of stone spray out in all directions with a bright green flash that left everyone blind for a few moments.
When everyone's eyes cleared there no longer stood a statue before them, but a real man. With real black, tied back hair and a real muscular, though not hulking body. The marks chiselled into the back now appeared to be branded into his skin. His face was serious and while not looking psychotic, the intensity made him look all the more fearful as he slowly scanned the group of oddly dressed people before him.
"Hear me peasants." The emperor said in a cold, commanding tone. "I am Zhao Li Tian, ruler of the Tang Empire." His eyes kept the same piecing stare as he slowly looked at each terrified face, except the man in the middle of the group who to Zhao looked more concerned. Zhao then turned his head as he heard someone trembling behind him and saw Dr. Ling, who was still lying on the ground and looking up at Zhao with utter shock. "From where you're facing I can assume you read the spell, thank you." Despite his appreciation Zhao's expression did not change at all. "For this you will be first to be given the chance to bow or perish before me!"
Dr. Ling was horrified upon hearing that, as was everyone else besides Jackie. His face showed more anger that his friend was being threatened.
"Please…don't hurt me…" Dr. Ling pleaded with even his voice trembling now.
"Then bow!" Zhao demanded with a booming shout that echoed throughout the hall. It was interesting how despite only wearing dusty green pants, he managed to keep his air of authority and power over everyone in the room.
"You can't threaten Dr. Ling!" One young man who was Dr. Ling's student said as the stepped past Jackie to address Zhao.
"Yeah, He's right!" Another student said standing next to him. The two young Chinese men looked determined to keep their teacher safe.
"You wish to oppose me?" Zhao asked with a raised brow. "Are you sure that is wise?"
"Please men…" Jackie said as he put his hands on one of their shoulders. "I don't think we should mess with him."
"Listen to your pathetic leader, who would rather cower to his enemy then face them like a proper man." The emperor said with a smirk.
"That's it!" One of the students said as he walked over to the weapons racks behind Zhao and pulled out a wooden spear with the tip pointed right to Zhao's face but from a safe enough distance that he couldn't just grab the spear from him. The other student joined by grabbing a meat cleaver sized dagger.
"So be it." Zhao said as his face went back to serious again. He didn't even flinch as the student holding the spear tried to thrust it into his gut. He grabbed the end of it right below the metal end point with lightning fast reflexes. Before the young man could get the chance to let go he is pulled forward by Zhao pulling the spear and with just one hard palm strike to his chest the student is flown back ten feet into one of the weapons racks, though it was luckily a rack of blunt weapons so he didn't end up slashed or skewered.
The other student looked at his now unconscious friend with utter terror but turned again to see Zhao right in front of him. He raised his hand to slash with the dagger but his wrist is quickly caught and painfully squeezed until he is forced dropped the dagger on the floor beside his feet.
"Those who fight pay the price of defeat." Zhao said as he pulled his arm back with his hand in a tiger claw position that seemed to be pointed to the students face.
"No!" Jackie yelled as he stepped forward, spinning his leg around to hit hard into Zhao's side which caused him to be knocked onto the ground while losing his grip on the student.
"Everyone, get out of here now!" Jackie yelled to everyone as he took up his fighting stance while Zhao slowly rose to his feet with an intrigued look at Jackie.
"Another challenger I see." Zhao said as he took his fighting stance as well.
The two stared each other down as Dr. Ling was helped up by his student who then helped carry the one knocked unconscious out of the chamber behind the rest of the team who had already started running up the stairs.
"Well then…let's begin" The Emperor said with a smile as his ready palms turned to clenched fist right before coming at Jackie with a swift combo of punches and kicks that Jackie was just barely quick enough to block and evade. Jackie finally got the chance to step back by dodging one of Zhao's head kicks. Jackie could tell this man was skilled as well as powerful so defense wouldn't cut it. He stepped forward again to deliver his own offensive of quick jabs and palm strikes but Zhao was able to block them all off with some effort. Jackie then attempted to sweep Zhao's legs but not only did Zhao jump over Jackie's leg, he had the quick thinking to kick Jackie in the face while in the air so the momentum of the strike would let Zhao flip back onto his feet.
"You show signs of great skill; might I have your name?" The Emperor actually asked politely with his hands now behind his back, now standing more relaxed as he watched Jackie rub his sore face while lying on the ground.
"Chan….Jackie Chan" Jackie said as he rose to his feet again with a determined look as he went into his fighting stance again.
"Well Jackie Chan I admire a gifted fighter when I meet one so I will give you a chance to end this bout and serve me in my army." Zhao said while not moving his hands from behind him even with Jackie up and ready again. "Otherwise you will be the first to fall in the reclaiming of my empire." The Emperor said with his cold, remorseless expression returning.
"I'm afraid I will have to decline the offer" Jackie replied while looking Zhao up and down, wondering if he was planning a surprise attack of some sort. "Your cause for war and conquest is not one I can support."
"What a shame…" Zhao said as he slowly moved his right hand from behind his back to be presented in front of Zhao's face to hide his cynical smirk. "Then you will die by my hands!"
Jackie's eyes went wide as Zhao clenched the hand in front of him and a roaring green flame immediately irrupted and began to constantly blaze around his fist. His revealed his other from his back, which was also now covered in Zhao's emerald coloured fire.
Zhao charged again with his fiery hands swiftly striking and slashing even more ferociously then his previous attack. Jackie could feel the heat coming off of Zhao's hands as he evaded his attacks as best he could. He finally had to back flip off the small platform that kept Zhao's statue and was now standing with his back to the emperor's stone army while the man himself looked down at Jackie with his hands unholy glow giving Zhao even more of a menacing presence.
Zhao wasted no time; he jumped high into the air. At least ten feet and was coming down fast right on top of Jackie who just barely dove out of the way before Zhao's palm struck the ground, making a six foot ring of fire over the ground around him for a few moments before the stone floor at his feet was a smoking black scorch mark.
"Enough of this…" Zhao said ruthlessly as he put his hands in front of his chest only a little bit apart. He concentrated for a moment before making a green ball of fire appear in between his hands.
"Bad day! Bad day! Bad day!" Jackie yelled out in the few seconds it took to react to the barrel sized ball of flame flying towards him like an arrow by cartwheeling to the side and back onto the platform. Seeing just what Zhao is capable of, Jackie knew he needed something to even the odds. That's when he remembered the weapon racks beside him. The closest one to him seemed to favor heavy weapons so in a split second decision he chose a steel battle-axe and held it firmly in a ready position with the blade pointing towards Zhao.
"Now it's getting interesting." Zhao said softly with a grin as he stepped onto the platform on the opposite side of Jackie. He slowly waved his right hand across the air and in the trail of flame behind it spawned a large, curved broadsword that ended in a wrapped green handle that appeared already in his grasp. "I hope your ready." Zhao warned Jackie right before charging forward again.
The two's heavier weapons made it more a duel of dodging the opponents powerful swings and finding the right opening to attack of successfully counter the opponents. Despite this fact Zhao still handled his sword with impressive speed and precision leaving Jackie to do most of the avoiding until he finally caught Jackie on his knees by making him have to raise the axe over his head to black and avoid it being cleaved in two.
"You fought well Chan." Zhao said as he put more and more pressure onto his blade, making him see beads of sweat run down Jackie's face as he struggled to hold him back. "But it is now over." He added cruelly before lifting his blade off just too quickly kick Jackie in the chest, causing him to be pushed onto his back with the axe sliding out of his hand.
Jackie looked up to see Zhao standing over him with a blank, remorseless look as he rose his sword up slowly to savor the moment of striking down this worthy opponent. Jackie tried to discreetly reach for the axe but it had slid off the platform. His heart pounding was the only thing he heard for those few moments Zhao was over him and was about to bring the sword down on him but actually stopped himself with blade only a few inches from Jackie's face as a shout could be heard from the other end of the chamber.
"Jackie? Are you ok?!" Dr. Ling called out from the bottom of the stair way. "The team is evacuating now and the authorities are on their way!"
"Reinforcements?" Zhao wondered and then seem to take a moment to decide something before looking back down at Jackie as he slowly lifted the blade away from him.
"You're lucky Jackie Chan, I do not have time to destroy your entire army because I have important matters to attend to." Zhao said as he let go of the swords hilt which made it disappear in the same green trail as before. "But know if you face me again I will finish what we started."
After that Zhao jumped from the platform and with incredible swiftness and balance, hopped from shoulder to shoulder of his army's statues straight ahead to the stairs. He jumped off the last statue's head and over and cowering Dr. Ling to run up the stairs with amazing (though not super) speed. He ran through the hall and charged past the few members of the team still waiting to ascend the rope up to the exit but Zhao only needed one mighty leap to make it out of the hole made in the ceiling. He ran the moment after he hit the rocky ground and was out of sight from everyone who was waiting outside of the palace within seconds.
"Jackie? Jackie?!" Dr. Ling called out as he was jogging down the side of the chamber to find Jackie, who was luckily running down the same way so they were able to meet in the middle. This seemed to benefit Ling as he was panting heavily from the run as Jackie stood in front of him.
"Glad to see you are not hurt Jackie." Dr. Ling commented after catching his breath. "I am so sorry I didn't listen to you about not reading out that message…I cannot believe what I have done."
"It's not your fault; no one could have predicted this." Jackie said with a small sigh as he thought about the other villainous characters he's had to face and knew once they were revealed they always had a plot to pursue after. "Though I am worried about what could happen next…"