Chapter 37: Killing Intent
Xue Wei felt his blood boiling within his body. He could feel his senses heightening, even further than they were before, and his eyes could see the movements of every single one of the weaker Sand Snakes.
The Sand Snakes that were equivalent to an Earth Warrior were being dealt with by the guards, while all the ones with strength equal to the Ordinary Warriors were ignored entirely.
They poured towards the group of youngsters, and the thick scent of blood permeated through the air. It was as if this scent of blood stimulated Xue Wei and he felt how his hand clenched tightly, and a killing intent started surging within his body.
He felt as if his soul was split into two, one part of him was eager to enter the battle, to fight and to kill. He was thirsty for blood and wanted to massacre anyone who stood in his way, that being both humans and beasts.
At the same time, he also felt a calmness descend onto him. It was as if his soul had left his body and observed everything from the outside. He could see himself standing still, one hand clenched tightly, and at the same time, he could also see a whole lot of youngsters fighting for their lives.
These Sand Snakes were small, all between one and two meters long, and they slithered between the people. They were not poisonous, but they were strong, and their bodies were clad in sand-colored scales that were almost impossible to penetrate by someone at the same level of strength.
At the same time, they had a set of sharp fangs and a mighty body, allowing them to lacerate their enemies with their fangs while holding them in the right position with their one to two-meter long bodies.
The snakes killed more and more of the young, inexperienced experts. Where all the noble-born children were able to hold their heads high and were capable of disposing off the snakes one after another, the commoners were not as great at it, and many got injured or died.
The snakes quickly lost many of their kin too, and as they ventured further into the ranks of youngsters, more and more beasts were killed.
Finally, they reached Xue Wei. Whenever they did, his hand would flicker out, and a Qi sword appeared in his palm. This sword was as sharp as a razor and created by Qi.
Swinging the sword constructed from energy casually, he chopped the snakes into pieces one after another, and soon they did their best to avoid Xue Wei. However, he had felt the joy of killing, and he could not contain his excitement as he moved further and further towards the center of the many snakes.
It was as if the snakes wished to avoid him. The killing intent surrounding Xue Wei kept growing. He was becoming more and more immersed in the feeling of killing, and to his surprise, he found that he was enjoying the experience of chopping up one snake after another.
A sinister smile played on his lips, and his eyes were filled with a chilled gleam. He was splashed red with the blood of his enemies, and he could not help but feel strength soaring in his body.
Xue Wei had killed hundreds of Sand Snakes; behind him was a path of corpses, and he continued to advance until he reached the fighting ground of the two Sky Warriors.
By now, Xue Wei’s entire body was drenched in blood; his white teeth were exposed in a gleeful smile; and it was clear that he had been enjoying the killing. The killing intent had also rolled off from him in waves, affecting both snakes and humans in the surroundings. Everyone had been able to feel the killing intent and it had caused them to feel fear to their cores.
The battle soon ended. Xue Wei had killed a large number of snakes, and the rest of the youngsters and guards had cleared up the remaining ones.
Xue Wei had been in a trance-like state. He had been entirely consumed by the feeling of slaughtering and found that he had enjoyed it, but the moment he laid eyes on the fight between the two strongest members of the group, the Sky Warrior Captain and the Sand Snake with the same strength as a Sky Warrior, he awoke as if someone had dumped a bucket of water on top of his head.
His face grew pale, and he felt nauseous. He could not understand who he had been just moments before, and the Qi sword in his hand vanished. Fortunately, none of the snakes in the surrounding areas dared to get close to Xue Wei, and Xue Wei slowly regained some color in his face as he took a few deep breaths.
"What happened," he asked himself. "Why did I suddenly get so overwhelmed by the urge to kill?"
He frowned and turned around only to see that the surviving members of the younger generation were looking at him as if they had seen a ghost – even the guards were wary as they looked at him.
The strength Xue Wei had displayed was almost equal to an Earth Warrior. He had shown raw power output that had shocked them all, but what had scared them silly was not that he had killed so many snakes, but the expression on his face when he killed them. The fact that he had found the whole situation thrilling scared them.
Sighing, Xue Wei did not try to explain anything. His face returned to a casual and cold expression, and he returned to the group of youngsters, yet everyone moved out of the way for him and even Shen Mu and Li Jian looked frightened.
"I am used to being alone," Xue Wei sighed. "This is nothing new." Having convinced himself that their reactions did not hurt him, he sat down with his legs crossed, his hands on his lap, and started pondering on what had happened to him.
The moment the fight had begun and the scent of blood permeated the air, it was as if his soul had split into two. One was his usual personality. It was calm and collected, but it had left his body and kept an eye on everything that had happened.
At the same time, he also had experienced a strange baleful killing aura surging within his body, and when he started cutting up the snakes, this urge to kill had taken over. He had almost entirely lost control over himself as he enjoyed the feeling of killing those snakes, and he could not help but feel slightly scared and very uneasy.
Xue Wei did not like the idea of losing control over himself, and he knew that he had to be more careful in the future so that it would not happen again, but he also knew that this was his very first life-and-death struggle. He might have experienced some real difficulties had it not been for this strange baleful killing intent growing within him.
Xue Wei was not the only one who had sat down to cultivate, but where Xue Wei was looking back on the actions he had made, the others were trying to restore their Qi after having been forced to use all the energy that they had to kill the snakes.
Some were trying to heal their wounds, using herbal plants they had brought with them from home or trying to purchase herbs from those who had some by paying them.
Everyone knew that their fate now was in the hands of the captain. If he failed the battle against the Sand Snake, then the Sand Snake would kill everyone present. But if the Captain won, then the Sand Snake would die, and they could resume their journey.
It took a full three hours from when the snakes appeared until the giant Sand Snake that had arrived died. The Captain had killed it, but he too was looking ruffled, and his clothes were disheveled.
He quickly cracked open the skull of the beast and picked up something that looked like a faceted gem, the beast’s core.
"We need to keep moving right away," the captain yelled out, but his face turned ugly when he saw that at least a hundred to two hundred of the youngsters had died in the attack of the Sand Snakes.
"Do a death count; write the name of those who died and then we move. The likelihood of another Sand Snake coming is very low, but it is still possible."
The guards got to their feet and gathered all the dead youngsters. They laid them in a line, and the captain found a set of papers and took a count. After this, he humphed a few times before he packed the papers away again, not allowing anyone else to see the papers.
"Okay, we start moving now!" the captain called out, and everyone started to follow him once more, away from the sight of carnage.
Where no one had dared to talk before because of the warnings that the captain had given them, now none of them dared speak because they had realized that this warning was real.
They were bound to run into problems along their travel, which took months, and now they knew that it was indeed a deadly journey they had embarked upon.
While they dared not speak, many were looking at Xue Wei with horror in their eyes, but some also had curiosity while others had veneration.
Strength was what determined one's future accomplishments, and no one could question Xue Wei's strength anymore.
Many of these commoners had heard about Xue Wei’s meteoric rise, but they had had a hard time believing it. Now when they saw his raw power on display in a fighting environment, no one questioned his strength any longer.
Xue Wei was completely unaffected by the many gazes he got, and he was not even the slightest bit worried about the other experts. What he worried about was his killing intent. Why did he have such killing intent hidden within himself?
He could not understand it; was it because he had experienced something bloody in his past, or was he merely just inherently a lunatic?
Xue Wei wished that Xiao Lei was by his side so that he could discuss with his uncle about how he felt, but he also knew that this was not an option. He only had himself to rely on.
Not going to give up, Xue Wei spent all the time on the road searching his body, yet no matter how much he searched it, he found no hidden secrets other than the peculiar pearl-like dantian.
The following two days were completely normal. No one dared to speak with Xue Wei, not even Shen Mu or Luo Zhirou spoke with him, but they would often look at him with worried eyes, while Li Jian had started a rumor that had spread fast, saying that Xue Wei was a bloodthirsty killer that would kill all of them if given the chance.
Xue Wei did not care about it, but many of the commoners and noble-born were filled with worry and distrust towards Xue Wei. They feared that he would use the power he had displayed earlier to attack them.
Thinking about this, Xue Wei could not help but snort in contempt. He was only a ninth layered Ordinary Warrior, while there was a Sky Warrior as a captain. Even if he wanted to get rid of the others, he did not have the opportunity to do so.
All in all, the only one that Xue Wei wanted to kill was Li Jian, but he also knew that it was impossible as things were now.
No matter what he did, the Sky Warrior captain would notice it, and that would be the same as signing his death certificate.
Xue Wei was not that stupid. As a result, he kept his murderous thoughts to himself. He knew that he and Li Jian would one day face off against one another, and that when that time came, Xue Wei should be able to kill him as easily as killing chickens. Although he was only a ninth layered Ordinary Warrior, he almost had the same strength as an Earth Warrior. Although any average Earth Warrior could fight Xue Wei to a standstill, no one in the Ordinary Warrior rank was able to beat him.