Chapter 398: Interception [V5C105 A Distance Within Reach]
The incubation chamber was a giant room hundreds of meters in diameter which seemed to have been transformed from a natural cave. There was a deep pit at its center in which flowed burning red lava. There was an origin array set up around the opening of this pit which filtered over half of the fierce flames, leaving only a gentle warmth with which to incubate the spider eggs.
The four walls were built in steps which rose upward like terraced fields with a large number of spider eggs on each of the ten steps. Their count increased toward the periphery, but their sizes decreased. There were at least tens of thousands of eggs on the outermost one, but they were also greatly inferior in size and activity—it seemed they would only produce servspiders.
Qianye scanned the entire room and found that there were actually tens of thousands of spiders eggs of all sizes. Not to mention a viscount, even Count Stuka’s incubation chamber might not be of such a scale. What was going on here?
His gaze swept through the room and fell upon the two flights of stairs closest to the center. There were five completely black spider eggs upon the second last step. They were completely different from the other ones, and three of them even had a number of obvious jade-green stripes on their shells.
Those were viscount-grade spider eggs!
The arachne breeding methods were somewhat different from the rest of the dark races. The female spider could produce hundreds of eggs in one go, but only a small number of them would become arachne.
It could be said that the egg hadn’t even hatched when its lifetime accomplishments had already been confirmed. This was an even crueler law of survival compared to humans. Barring any major accidents or opportunities, these viscount-level eggs would normally reach the viscount rank after they mature.
The higher the grade of the spider egg, the lower the chances of it appearing. An arachne viscount could make his female partner lay down tens of thousands of eggs in her lifetime, but viscount level ones would hardly exceed ten even among different mothers. To the arachne, only this kind of egg would be treated as a true descendant.
Now, there were five viscount-grade spider eggs before Qianye.
Bringing these back would net him military contributions. A single egg was equal in merit to a third-rank viscount. Just like the dark races, the empire had always been engaging in biological research—the demand for gifted dark race offspring was high and the rewards, generous.
When Qianye walked down to the lowest step, he unexpectedly discovered a spider egg behind a veil of green mist.
The egg wasn’t big, and its aura was weaker than the other viscount eggs. However, its entire body was a sparkling, translucent black. There were numerous green veined patterns on its shell which came together to form a set of natural runes, albeit the simplest type. Its meaning was poison.
This rune alone was enough to set it aside from the spider eggs of the viscount grade. Qianye found the aura being emitted from the egg to be somewhat familiar. He activated the Eyes of Truth once again and observed in detail before finally confirming that the aura bore some semblance to Count Stuka’s.
Qianye suddenly realized that this spider egg was probably Count Stuka’s descendant, and a count-grade one at that. Although its aura was weak and seemed to be congenitally deficient, it might perhaps force its way to the count ranks. But there was an inherent difference between it and a viscount grade egg, and this difference was the key—the natural rune representing poison.
This discovery caused Qianye to suddenly realize something. Count Stuka possessed a count-grade offspring, but it was congenitally defective. Perhaps this egg hadn’t finished growing even as he was at death’s door. This was probably the reason why he was reluctant to give up his position and let it fall into another’s hand.
It was no wonder Qianye had encountered such intense resistance after his arrival just now. So it turned out that this was a common incubation chamber used by a first-rank viscount and a veteran count. That was why it was of such a large scale.
Since Count Stuka had placed his descendant here, then the incubation chamber in his castle was likely filled with decoys in order to pull the wool over people’s eyes. With such thoughts and schemes, it appeared this arachne count wasn’t that incompetent.
Qianye carefully sealed and stowed away the count-grade egg and the five viscount-grade ones into Andruil’s Mysterious Realm. The realm was now packed full and could no longer accommodate anything else.
Qianye decided not to linger here. It was high time he returned to the empire to report his contributions and renew his supplies. Additionally, these spider eggs wouldn’t survive very long after leaving the incubation chamber, so it was imperative that he dealt with them as quickly as possible. Otherwise, dead spider eggs would lose their value.
Qianye couldn’t help but sigh as he glanced at the remaining spider eggs. Such a large number of eggs together would equal a dark race count in terms of contribution. It was just that he had no means to take them away in one piece. He placed a number of origin grenades on the origin array covering the lava heat source and installed a simple timing mechanism before leaving swiftly.
This time, Qianye took the large passage toward the main gates. This passage was straight, wide, and the shortest in distance, but he would definitely encounter guards. After sprinting all the way and slaughtering over twenty high-ranking dark race warriors, Qianye finally arrived at the main gates. At this time, muffled rumbles rang out behind him like rolling thunder. The entire Black Nest began to tremble as a wave of infernal heat spread out from behind.
Qianye sped up his footsteps after sensing the odor of lava. He slashed a baron in front into two and knocked a servspider flying as he charged straight out of the lair. He glanced back while dashing along the stone path leading away from Black Nest. The castle was shaking continuously, and people were running out from its various passages in panic. Two of the tunnels had even started to spit out flames.
This movement quaked the earth and shook the mountains. It was as though a volcano was erupting.
Qianye was startled. Afterward, he recalled the origin array he had just destroyed and realized that the array suppressing the underground lava was probably of utmost importance. After its destruction, the lava underneath went out of control and started gushing out. Apparently, the entire incubation chamber and the surrounding core area of Black Nest had become unsalvageable.
This was good news for Qianye because Black Nest would no longer be an obstruction should he choose to push further west in the future. He halted further observation and darted into the closest mountainous region, prepared to retrace his steps via Silverflow Fjord.
He hadn’t gotten far when he suddenly chanced upon the first-rank viscount Porter as he was scanning his surroundings for origin power. However, Qianye discovered that his aura had grown much weaker than before.
He’s injured? Qianye’s heart was shaken. He adjusted his direction and began approaching the arachne rapidly.
Moments later, Viscount Porter’s entourage appeared from behind a gentle slope several hundred meters away from Qianye. It could be said that the viscount’s troop formation as he left Black Nest was majestic and surging with killing intent—even a main force division of the expeditionary army might not be able to halt his advance.
Now, however, the squads around him were in disarray, and no more than twenty high-ranking warriors remained by his side. Moreover, all of them carried serious injuries.
Porter himself wasn’t in good shape as his armor was broken in many places. There was a big defect on the edge of his giant axe, and its hilt was obviously bent. Unexpectedly, two out of his eight arachnid legs had been broken. Presently, he had four legs on one side and only two on the other, which made it difficult for him to maintain balance while moving. There was a terrifying, bone-deep wound on his face, and his left eye had vanished.
Judging from the travel distance, Porter’s battle time hadn’t even reached half a day. How was he beaten so badly? Apparently, the human unit that had appeared here was of extraordinary combat strength, quite likely the main branch unit of a certain aristocratic family.
Regardless of that, Qianye no longer hesitated because the opportunity before him was simply too rare. He emerged abruptly and charged full speed at Porter without bothering to disguise himself.
The group’s morale was at an all-time low from the pain and injury. Moreover, they had relaxed their vigilance since they would soon arrive at Black Nest. Only when Porter suddenly glanced backward after sensing some abnormal vibrations in the earth did he see Qianye rushing toward them.
At this moment, Qianye was less than a hundred meters from Porter. He exerted greater power from his feet, causing the ground to rise and fall with his every step. Waves of runes spread toward every direction like ripples on the water surface.
Qianye raised his speed yet again and sent flying an arachne viscount who sought to block his path. He was now less than ten meters from Porter. East Peak rose and slashed out through the air.
Porter saw Qianye clearly. His first expression was of disdain, then one of anger. No matter how injured he was, there was no chance a weak human who wasn’t even a champion could take advantage of him. But his expression shifted all of a sudden as Nirvanic Rend appeared—he felt an instinctive threat to his life!
The arachne viscount paid the price for his initial carelessness. He roared frantically and hurled his giant axe at Qianye like a javelin in a bid to block the latter’s charging momentum. He forcefully moved his massive arachnid body to the side and used his four intact limbs to receive the sword intent emitted from the edge of the heavy blade.
A series of cracks rang out as one of Porter’s limbs actually broke. However, Nirvanic Rend’s momentum didn’t end there. It pressed on to leave a deep gash on the arachne’s abdomen before the sword intent thoroughly dissipated.
Qianye evaded the whirling axe with a simple sidestep and leapt up without pause after landing on the ground. His speed, at the level of a vampire viscount, allowed him to reach the viscount in a single dash, and he was poised to stomp onto Porter’s arachnid body.
Porter already saw Qianye as a great enemy. How could he give the latter such an opportunity? He immediately retracted his entire body as his lingering origin power began to crackle on his humanoid torso, poised to launch an all-out attack the moment Qianye arrived.
However, Qianye made an urgent stop mid-air. He then drew the Twin Flowers, merged them into one, and unfurled a pair of brilliant wings behind his back! Soon, an incomparably fierce blaze blossomed from its muzzle, instantly lighting up the dark world like a beam of sunlight shooting through space.
The Refined Silver Bullet of Extreme Yang turned into a beam of light which blasted upon Porter’s body, issuing a dazzling burst of radiance—it was as though a new sun had risen amidst the darkness.
The surviving dark race warriors in the vicinity began to scream in misery as the sudden extreme yang radiance pierced their eyes. Even powerful barons felt their eyes burning and had tears streaming down. Their vision became a blur, and they could no longer see anything for the moment.
Porter howled in pain. His entire body was covered in raging flames from head to toe. These flames which contained daybreak origin power was extremely agonizing to the dark races. The arachne viscount lost all reason due to the agony—his massive body fell to the ground where he rolled around with all his might in a vain effort to extinguish the flames.
Qianye had already switched back to his True Sight. Before him, he saw a boundless surge of daybreak origin power almost engulfing the entire area.Previous Chapter Next Chapter