The Radiant Smile That Belied Her Jaded Heart (prequel to An Emerging Warrior Spirit)

Metal Overlord

Well-known member
This is a prequel to the previous Li Mei fanfic I wrote detailing the struggles of Fei Yen's life and the significant moments in her life. Hope you all enjoy it!

Some music to enhance the mood

Prologue: The Story of Fei Yen's Origins

During the heyday of Onaga's empire, a secret society of holy priests had existed for millions of years to combat the dominance of The Dragon King and his holy men. These priests had immense spiritual power that rivaled that of deities; as a result of the sheer power, once they mastered their abilities, they became immortal and stopped aging. Unfortunately, one of Onaga's most trusted advisors, Shao Kahn, had found about out the existence and location of these priests, and informed his master about them. Onaga sent Shao Kahn and his army to ambush and slay the unsuspecting priests, with only one of them remaining. The priest had fought valiantly against them, but was overwhelmed by the sheer number of soldiers that were present there, and died on the battlefield. The fact that Shao Kahn was able to quickly take out one of the empire's biggest threats elated him, and spawned a lust for power that soon resulted in major events to come in the distant future, such as the assassination of the Dragon King and the new rule of Shao Kahn.

The male priest had left behind a wife and a child before he died. The child, Fei Yen, was a direct descendant of these priests, and unknowingly inherited their powers. Before Fei Yen could even grow to be an adolescent, her mother had died of sickness, leaving Fei Yen by herself at a very young age. She became a pickpocket in order to support herself, stealing food from various Outworlders and other items to forge makeshift weapons, which she used to defend herself during her years of adolescence. Her pickpocketing days had come to a brutal end however when she was caught pickpocketing the sword of an enforcer of Onaga's rule patrolling the area at the time. The man had kidnapped her, and when she tried to fight back and escape from him, she was beaten by him to the brink of death. The man had left her body for dead in the sunlight while taking back his sword. The smell of her blood attracted a few nearby carnivorous Outworld canines, who were preparing to feast upon her body. Fei Yen, tired of living alone and struggling to defend herself daily, smiled and closed her eyes, and never looked back...

One day, Fei Yen woke to find herself in someone else's care, with a young boy slightly younger than her and another older man at her side. She noticed that all of her wounds had been completely healed. Confused and scared, she suddenly jumped up and asked the two who they were, where she was. As they motioned towards her in order to comfort her, she warned them to stay back, not trusting the two of them. She asserted that she was supposed to be dead right now. The boy came towards her and embraced her tightly; she tried to escape her grip but found herself soothed by the warmth of the boy's body, and shared the embrace with him. The boy ensured her not to worry, and that they were not going to hurt or take advantage of her. As they let go of each other, the boy introduced his name as Han, told her that the man with him was his father, Hong-Li, and told her that she was in the village of Sun Do. He explained to her that while traveling back home with his father, he noticed the Outworld beasts near Fei Yen's body, and rushed over there to scare them away from her. They carried her back home and tended to her wounds, but Han pointed out that surprisingly, all of her wounds had healed not only completely, but very quickly on their own. It hadn't even been a full day yet when she healed!

Surprised by everything she had heard, she was extremely grateful, but she told them that she was going to leave. When the boy tried to stop her from leaving, she reasoned that she has to leave for their sake because she is a criminal who was attacked because she tried to steal from them, and that housing and caring for the enemy the way they did for Fei Yen could result in them getting in trouble with the empire if discovered. Hong-li then spoke, telling her that as a martial arts mentor, he could at least teach her to defend herself better from the Outworld menace before leaving. The boy agreed, eager to see Fei Yen stay. It took some time, but she then smiled, finally giving in and deciding to stay with them for a while.

Over the years, under the guidance of Hong-Li, she had transformed into a very powerful warrior, tapped into her hidden spiritual powers and learned about the history of Outworld, including the existence of the-then secret race of warrior priests slayed by Shao Kahn that Fei Yen was a descendant of. Hong-Li revealed to her that he himself is a distant descendant of these priests, proving it by giving her a powerful holy sword named the Kunlun Dao to slay her foes with. When she had reached the age equivalent to 25 in Outworld years, she fully mastered her abilities, and had stopped aging then. Realizing this, she decided to use her newfound powers and combat abilities to continue the legacy of the extinct warrior priests.

In the meantime, she and Han had fallen in love with each other and had a son together named Cheng. Around the time Cheng had grown out of his early childhood, Shao Kahn had taken the realm of Outworld from his master Onaga. He had planned to use the Dragon King's army to conquer the neighboring small realms and merge Outworld, when the estranged former ruler of the Netherrealm, Lucifer, invaded the realm by surprise and sprung his attack. Lucifer had planned to return for power ever since Shinnok overthrew his rule in the hellish realm, and was going to start by teaming up with the forces of chaos from Chaosrealm conquering Outworld. The weaker Shao Kahn was unprepared for this new threat, having just taken control of Outworld, and was overwhelmed (the Dragon King's army had also been killed as a result when Shao Kahn sent them to defeat the enemy). Before Lucifer could set his eyes on killing Shao Kahn, however, Fei Yen intervened. She had left Sun Do to fight off the invasion force and test her abilities. Lucifer sent the forces of chaos to kill her, but Fei Yen easily slayed them all. The two then did battle, Fei Yen becoming the victor. To finish him off, she planted the Kunlun Dao within Lucifer's heart, resulting in his body disintergrating.

She then returned back home to discover Hong-Li dead and Han mortally wounded. Some of the Chaosrealm invaders had strayed off to terrorize the Outworld citizens, including the villagers of Sun Do. Hong-Li and Han successfully held them off, protecting the citizens, but they were severely wounded in the process. Fei Yen tearfully rushed to his side in an effort to heal his wounds. It was too late however as he was already two steps away from death's door. Han could only struggle to tell Fei Yen about the first time he saw her, and how he was amazed by the pleasant smile painted on her face. This was what ultimately led him to urge her to stay with him so many years ago, unbeknownst to Fei Yen. He did not regret a moment of the time spent with Fei Yen since then, and urges her to look after and protect their son Cheng before passing away. Fei Yen, sobbing, bid him a final farewell.

Fei Yen now works for Shao Kahn as his top enforcer and right-hand woman. As she vividly remembers, Shao Kahn kidnapped her son immediately afterwards and forced her to join him in his quest for dominance. The guilt that she felt for siding with the enemy increasingly eats away at Fei Yen's conscience, as well as her ultimate desire to reunite with her son, who had been separated from her and imprisoned in a location deliberately kept secret from her. During this time, Kahn had conquered several small realms and was now about to conquer Edenia as the 10th Edenian Mortal Kombat tournament was about to take place. Fei Yen, having been fed up with serving him and anxious to see her son again, had then attacked and forced a couple of Shao Kahn's minions to reveal the whereabouts of her son Cheng, threatening to kill them if they didn't. They then revealed that her son was imprisoned and in chains deep with Kahn's many dungeons. Fei Yen then immediately runs off to the dungeons, wanting to hurry and escape with her son to Edenia before Shao Kahn found out about her betrayal...
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shit this is a prologue? Damn son you do it nicely. I shall keep up with this story (unlinke my son)
Chapter 1: Revelation

Fei Yen finds the cell in which her son resided. She uses her sword, the Kunlun Dao, to slice through the thick steel bars that encased Cheng. Kicking the steel bars away, she finally sees her son for the first years. He was barefoot, his hair was messy and his face showed no emotion, but he still looked exactly like the boy he was when they were separated that. She tearfully smiles, relieved, and tells him that their suffering ends now because she's here for him. While walking up to him, tells him that they are going to leave Outworld for good and find a new home. She softly asks how he felt about that. Curiously, however, he does not speak to her at all. He simply lifts his head up and stares at her, blankly. Not wanting to waste any time, she ignores this, figuring he was still in shock from finally seeing her, and cuts the chains that held him hostage.

She kneels down and wraps her arms around him, picking him up. Cradling him in his arms, she looks down towards him to notice that he still has the same emotionless stare in his eyes that he just had a few moments ago. She continues to look at him in his eyes, wanting to leave as soon as possible but utterly puzzled by the fact that he isn't speaking or showing any emotion whatsoever. She softly asks him what happened to him as her desire to escape the dungeons weakens, all while still looking into Cheng's eyes. She calls out his name repeatedly in an effort to get a response for him, becoming worried about him. She can't help but stare into her son's eyes, unable to escape the grip that his stare has upon her soul.

Everything starts to blur as Fei Yen looks around to suddenly find herself at Sun Do again, facing Shao Kahn with her son in her arms. The villagers were all outside near the two speculating the encounter. Her son, scared and crying, is unable to even look at Shao Kahn as he approaches the two of them. Fei Yen tries to comfort him as Shao Kahn smiles, telling her that she has to make a choice between her only family left and the villagers now. Fei Yen refuses, telling him that she would kill herself before doing such a thing. Shao Kahn then looks at Fei Yen for a moment, before smiling and walking towards the villagers that were outside speculating. Suddenly, Kahn rips out the heart of one of the male villagers, before telling her that if she doesn't make a choice, then he will. Fei Yen, horrified and speechless, does not respond, irritating Shao Kahn and prompting him to walk towards one of the female villagers this time. Fei Yen shouts out stop as she has finally made a decision. She sets her son Cheng down for a moment and picks up a small makeshift knife near the dead villager's bloodied body with her left hand. She walks back to her son and lays down next to him, telling him to sit in her lap. He asks her why, which causes Fei Yen to tearfully yell at him to not question her and to just do as he is told.

Cheng, alarmed, runs over there and slowly sits down in front of her. She pulls him a little closer to her while stroking his hair, telling him that she loves him dearly and that he'll get to see his father and grandfather soon while putting the knife to his throat. Cheng, frightened, asks her what she is doing. The villagers simply watch in awe and Shao Kahn patiently smiles and waits. Telling him that he doesn't deserve this while trembling violently, she closes her eyes, turns the sharp end of the knife towards Cheng, and holds it out a bit. She says that although he gets to see his family, she isn't sure if she will, before planting the knife in his throat...

Blood splatters all over Fei Yen's left hand as the villagers look away in horror at what Fei Yen had just done. Fei Yen herself slowly opens her eyes while pulling the knife out of the throat of her now-dead son. When her eyes are fully opened, she lifts her knife up and while looking at the blood of her son that stained her clothes, reality fully sets in for her.

Her son was dead. She herself was the one that killed Cheng, her own creation. And it was time for her to go as well.

She prepares to stab her own self in the throat, when Shao Kahn stops her, holding her arm. As she looks at him in confusion, he uses his arm to heal the wound of Cheng's corpse. After using his free arm to throw Cheng's body to the side, he then stretches out his free arm towards her as a bright green aura surrounds Fei Yen, her eyes turning bright green and her body motionless. A large green orbs of light emerges from her eyes and mouth, flies into Shao Kahn's hand. The blood splatter along with the blood around Fei Yen's hands and body suddenly disappears. He then walks to Cheng's body, and picks it up, infusing the body with sorcery of his own. The body then moves its head around on it own, causing the villagers to gasp in awe. He then removes the spell that he cast on Fei Yen, causing her to ask what was going on and demanding him to give her son back to her.

It is at this point where the present-day Fei Yen, still in the dungeon cell, comes back to reality, realizing that she had just had a flashback. She notices that her son feels a lot lighter, prompting her to look down, only to gasp in horror, discovering a pile of dust beneath her feet.

Everything that had just happened in her flashback was indeed real.

Her son had been dead for years. She previously thought that Shao Kahn kidnapped her son in order to force her to join his side, but in actuality, Fei Yen had killed Chang years ago. The "person" that stood before her in the dungeon cell was just the undead corpse of her son infused with the memories stripped from her by Shao Kahn. Shao Kahn had manipulated her into killing her son when she refused to serve him, and to prevent her from killing herself, he stripped her of his memories and tricked her into believing that her son was still alive, only held hostage by him, manipulating her into joining his ranks.

When Fei Yen looked into its soulless eyes, she regained her memories. The creation of sorcery had been locked away in an attempt to keep Fei Yen from regaining her memories. The corpse, having served its only purpose, had been reduced to dust, as the powerful sorcery that stored her memories was the only thing holding the corpse together.

Fei Yen, devastated that her quest to reunite with her son was all a lie, kneeled down and sobbed while planting her hands in the dust. She had dedicated her life to finding him, and even reluctantly took innocent lives in the name of Shao Kahn under the pretense of getting her son back, only to find that she herself had already killed him. The unpleasant memories that were now etched within her soul felt almost as fresh as they did when she was going to commit suicide. She fell to the ground in disgust at what she believed to be becoming the monster that she devoted her life to fight against.

During her moment of grief, she notices her Kunlun Dao on the ground. Feeling as if death were calling for her, she crawls over to her sword. She saw herself as corrupted, an evil that needed to be expelled from the world. She picks up her sword using his left hand and sits up against one of the walls of dungeon cell, holding her sword above her. Looking at the sword, she tries to stab herself, but strangely, struggles to deal the final blow. She thinks about the possibility of the other people that were and are still being manipulated by Shao Kahn, and when she first decided to liberate Outworld of the evil and oppression that both empires represent. She doesn't feel as though she deserves to still live when she robbed the life of others, but she also doesn't want to leave others out there to suffer under scum such as Shao Kahn.

She thinks for a moment before coming to a decision. She lowers her sword and places it in her sheath that rested on her left hip. Standing up and looking at the ashes of her son's corpse, she decides to devote her life to inspiring hope in the people of Outworld to fight against the tyranny of their rulers. She reasoned that the people of Outworld deserve it; even if she failed to defeat Shao Kahn, others could rise to the task. With her mind set on this, she walks over to her son's ashes, kneeling down and paying her respects to her deceased loved one. After she finishes that, she walks away, remembering that she just betrayed the empire, when a peculiar-looking Shokan with tiger stripes suddenly jumped down in front of the cell where Fei Yen was at...
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