Looking deeply confused, Guan Fu hastily asked, “What’s wrong, Brother Yue?”
Yue Yanxi had been in the middle of a conversation with them when he had suddenly taken out a Sound Stone and started communicating via it in private. Immediately afterwards, his expression flickered with fright. This made Guan Fu wonder what was going on.
The three of them followed Yue Yanxi into the Seven-star Blue Sea.
As they did, Yue Yanxi hesitated briefly before saying, “Nie Tian said those stone statues won’t bring us great fortune. Instead, unknown danger lies within them. I trust him, so I told all disciples of our sect to evacuate!”
Jiang Feng, Guan Fu, and Jian Tong all gasped with astonishment. “Nie Tian said that?!”
In that forbidden region, they had all witnessed Nie Tian’s incredible abilities as the seventh Son of the Stars of the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace.
A figure like him wouldn’t make important decisions without a reason, especially at such a sensitive moment.
Even though the Bliss Mountain Sect, which Jiang Feng was from, had strife with Nie Tian, he decided to trust Nie Tian after pondering in silence for a few seconds. Therefore, he hurriedly took out his Sound Stone and issued orders to the Bliss Mountain Sect disciples.
Guan Fu and Jian Tong trusted Nie Tian even more. They had already made arrangements as Jiang Feng hesitated.
The Flame Bird sped away from the heart of the Seven-star Blue Sea at full speed.
But at the same time, Nie Tian sent a wisp of his soul awareness to the Beast-controlling Sect disciples’ location, where it suddenly flew into Yin Yanan’s sea of awareness.
“Shameless bastard!” Yin Yanan grew furious as she assumed that Nie Tian was so daring that he was actually going to take advantage of her with his soul awareness again.
Therefore, she decided to teach him a lesson as soon as Nie Tian’s soul awareness barged into her mind.
However, at that very moment, Nie Tian’s soul awareness delivered a message to her.
A shocked look appeared in her eyes as she received Nie Tian’s warning.
At that moment, Mu Biqiong from the Bliss Mountain Sect suddenly called out in her womanly voice, “Senior Zhou, we disciples of the Bliss Mountain Sect have decided to give up on deriving enlightenment from these stone statues. We’re leaving now, and we won’t ask for our spirit jades back.”
“Sure!” Zhou Shang said, laughing.
Like Mu Biqiong, the representatives of the Guan Clan and the Jian Clan also sprang to their feet and took turns to express their intention to leave.
“We’ve decided to leave too, Senior Zhou.”
“Considering that we can’t seem to gain anything, we don’t want to waste any more time here. We’re leaving too.”
They started the spell formations within their respective air-transportation spiritual tools as they spoke. They only waited for Zhou Shang to nod so they could leave.
Still smiling, Zhou Shang nodded and waved at them. “Sure. Go ahead.”
SHEW! SHEW! SHEW!
The air-transportation spiritual tools that belonged to the Bliss Mountain Sect, the Guan Clan, and the Jian Clan sped off after the Flame Bird.
However, instead of heading towards their own ancient starships, they headed towards the Divine Flame Sect’s.
That was because Jiang Feng, Jian Tong, and Guan Fu had ordered them to follow the Flame Bird, so that all of them would be able to join up.
Originally, Yin Yanan had been somewhat hesitant after Nie Tian had warned her against the stone statues. But her expression flickered as well when she saw the Bliss Mountain Sect, the Guan Clan, and the Jian Clan leaving in a hurry.
Yin Yanan finally made up her mind, and said, “It seems we won’t be able to come to gain anything here either. We’re out of here too.”
The other nine disciples of the Beast-controlling Sect were all shocked and confused by her decision.
They fixed Yin Yanan with inquiring gazes, wishing to know what made her decide to follow the Divine Flame Sect’s example and leave.
Instead of giving them an explanation, Yin Yanan shook her head towards them, and then fixed her eyes on Zhou Shang.
With a lazy expression, Zhou Shang waved his hand at them. “Leave if you want to.”
As he did, a hint of doubt finally flashed across his narrowed eyes.
The fact that three sects and two clans had simultaneously pulled their members out of this place in a hurry puzzled him as to what was happening.
He had a feeling that these parties had reached some mutual understanding.
However, he couldn’t figure out why they would leave all at the same time, while his sect and the Chu Clan had successfully interacted with the stone statues.
He then shot his gaze at the people from Trisword Sect and the Chu Clan, and was slightly relieved to discover that they were still observing where they had been.
At this moment, two disciples of his sect managed to interact with two other stone statues.
This put him in a good mood again. He laughed heartily and forgot about the other parties suddenly leaving.
As the person who was in charge of this operation, if he could help these talented young disciples from his sect derive valuable enlightenment from these stone statues, it would be considered a significant contribution on his part.
Whether he would be able to hold on to his lofty position in the Pure Heaven Sect would rely on Patriarch Pure Heaven’s attitude towards him.
After all, he wasn’t the only middle Void domain expert in the Pure Heaven Sect.
The success of this operation would have a significant impact on him. Those who had derived valuable enlightenment from these stone statues would most likely have bright futures in the Pure Heaven Sect, and it was him who had decided who would come on this trip.
As he thought of what this operation would bring him in the future, he grew increasingly relaxed and calm.
SHEW! SHEW! SHEW!
One air-transportation spiritual tool after another was flying closer and closer towards the Divine Flame Sect’s berthed ancient starship.
At the same time, Yue Yanxi and the other experts were flying towards them at full speed in an attempt to meet them halfway.
During this time, disciples of the Pure Heaven Sect managed to interact with all of the remaining stone statues.
At this point, all of the eight stone statues had shed their original pale-gray rocky appearances, and turned to look as if they had been carved out of huge pieces of jade.
Even though there had been signs of changes, people would still often be caught by surprise when they happened.
Shortly after the air-transportation spiritual tools had left one after another, the eight members of the Chu Clan and the Pure Heaven Sect who had managed to interact with the stone statues suddenly flew uncontrollably towards the eight statues, which now looked like jade.
Zhou Shang stood aghast. “Zhang Tian!”
BANG! BANG! BANG!
The eight young men and women suddenly exploded as they flew closer to the statues.
Their bones, flesh, and blood instantly merged with the statues. Even their true souls were sucked into the statues.
Blood-colored light started to wiggle in the eight statues’ blurry faces, which gradually morphed to take the appearances of the eight youngsters who they had just killed.
The twisted faces of the youngsters’ true souls appeared over the statues’ faces, as if they were still suffering unimaginable pain.
At this moment, a shudder went through Zhou Shang as he suddenly realized that the other parties must have discovered something, and thus left on the Flame Bird and their other air-transportation spiritual tools.
All of a sudden, the stone statues flew up from under the sea’s surface.
An incomparably terrifying aura instantly burst forth from within the statues, shaking heaven and earth.
Without the slightest hesitation, the eight statues raised their enormous jade arms and slapped the Trisword Sect, the Chu Clan, and the Pure Heaven Sect’s berthed air-transportation spiritual tools with great force.
Those air-transportation spiritual tools were puny in the face of their enormous, hundred-meter-tall bodies.
Under their overwhelming attacks, the air-transportation spiritual tools exploded one after another, as if they were all made of paper.
The lives of ten members of the Chu Clan, ten disciples of the Trisword Sect, and a few dozen disciples of the Pure Heaven Sect instantly perished.
The middle Void domain Zhou Shang was the only one who survived. Even though his private domain trembled unceasingly after taking a violent slap from a huge jade arm, he wasn’t injured.
However, he let out a miserable shriek in the next moment.
All of these young disciples from the Pure Heaven Sect were either chosen ones with unmatched talent, or core disciples who had had good chances at making new breakthroughs in their cultivation.
Each and every one of them held unlimited potential, even though their cultivation bases hadn’t ranked very high among all of the Pure Heaven Sect disciples, which was close to a thousand.
Otherwise, they wouldn’t have been arranged to come here and derive enlightenment from these stone statues.
A few dozen young disciples with great potential had suddenly died at the same time. As the person who was responsible for this operation, how would he explain this to Patriarch Pure Heaven?
In just a flash, the Pure Heaven Sect’s vital energy was greatly undermined. The stone statues had annihilated their fortune over the coming century. Who knew how long and how many precious materials it would take for them to gather so many chosen ones again?
Zhou Shang felt an agonizing heartache.
Meanwhile, he discovered that each statue exuded an aura that wasn’t any weaker than his.
Combined, they held terrifying strength that made him feel like he would die in this place.
Some of the dead youngsters’ blood, bones, and bits of flesh fell out of the sky, along with debris from the air-transportation spiritual tools.
As that happened, a huge vortex gradually formed and stretched towards the depths of the sea.
Zhou Shang discovered that the vortex seemed to be gathering all of the remains that had fallen into the sea.
Then, a stone statue that was much larger appeared at the bottom of the vortex and gradually rose towards the surface of the sea.
The larger stone statue greedily absorbed all of the blood, mangled limbs, and bits of flesh into itself.
With a single glance at what was happening, Zhou Shang was deeply shaken, his face turning pale with fright.
Only after a while did he let out thunderous roars that shook the heavens. “The Divine Flame Sect!!!”
The Divine Flame Sect’s Flame Bird had been the first to leave. They must have secretly informed the Beast-controlling Sect, the Bliss Mountain Sect, and the other parties of the potential danger, but left them to die. This must be their scheme.