Chapter 505: Comrades

Chapter 505: Comrades [V6C35 – Sorrow of a Silent Parting]

Qianye didn’t rush up to the treetop. Instead, he produced East Peak and instilled energy into it. The sword was quickly suffused with a faint scarlet splendor and several silver lines glimmered upon the blade.

East Peak’s might had increased significantly after incorporating the Heavenly Dew Silver and Dark Thread Crystals. It had long since surpassed the standards of an ordinary grade-seven weapon. The trunk of this peculiar tree was sturdy, but it wasn’t at the level of a vehicle plate armor. How could it block East Peak’s slash? With just a slight effort from Qianye, East Peak had made a deep gash in the tree-trunk.

The tree shook briefly as though it were crying out in agony, and ripples spread out rapidly from the dark purple sludge around the roots. The scene was incomparably eerie. It looked as though this big tree, including the dark purple substance covering the entire forest, was alive.

However, with his True Sight, Qianye was able to see that the flow of origin power within was disrupted by the cut, and the circulatory system inside was in chaos. That was the reason for the resultant scene. The tree’s root system extended fairly wide, and the origin power waves were being transmitted along it to produce the many ripples.

A white fluid with a light fragrance oozed out from the gap, emitting strands of origin power in the process. Qianye stuck a finger into the liquid and brought it into his mouth for a taste.

As expected, it was origin distillate!

It was just that the attribute of this natural origin distillate leaned toward void origin power. It fell between Evernight and Daybreak with some bias toward the dark side. Compared to the Marrow Cleansing Pond of the Zhao clan, this kind of natural origin distillate would require the addition of numerous ingredients and an array of refinements in order to remove the darkness origin power. Only then could it be utilized by Daybreak Cultivators.

However, it was already quite shocking even in its present state. Even a peak major clan like the Zhao clan required three months to brew a Marrow Cleansing Pond. This meant that the origin distillate produced by a single tree was likely worth several thousand gold coins. Moreover, the forest here was boundlessly vast with thousands, if not tens of thousands, of such trees. This forest alone was worth the empire fighting this war.

Qianye sighed emotionally. This was only a small area of this landmass. There might be even more regions with treasures hidden within them.

It was no wonder that the Evernight Council and the empire could never tire of exploring and conquering new continents. The clan and family lords who possessed skill and strategic foresight would also choose to pioneer new frontiers despite the great risk and inevitable sacrifices.

New territories meant greater resources, and greater resources meant faster development. That was how the human race had gained space and managed to survive in this world covered in darkness.

At this moment, Qianye suddenly discovered that the transmitted wave had disappeared at a certain point.

Someone’s here!

Qianye immediately activated his True Sight and glanced over in the direction of the altered vibratory waves. There he saw a shadow flicker and disappear.

That figure was extremely fast and even Qianye couldn’t capture its tracks. He immediately drew East Peak, withdrew his aura, and walked over in the direction where the shadow had disappeared.

That silhouette never appeared again in Qianye’s vision and seemed to have left for the next target.

Qianye sniffed a bloody odor just as he was about to arrive where the shadow had flickered. He hastened his steps and flitted across the dark purple substance without stirring up a single wave.

Qianye was startled as he circled past a large tree where he discovered several corpses in Zhao clan uniform.

Qianye recognized most of these Zhao clan experts. All of them were elites from the bloody battle who had been dispatched to investigate this land. Now, they had all died here before they had even reached the core region.

His expression changed slightly, and it felt as though his internal organs had been doused with cold water. He calmed himself down first without checking the corpses. Instead, he activated his Eye of Truth to scan the surrounding ground and trees one after the other.

There were strangely few traces of combat left behind at the scene. However, there was no sign of the Blue Firmament or West Pole Violet Qi, which meant that Zhao Jundu wasn’t with them.

Qianye exhaled lightly as his tense nerves relaxed somewhat. He then knelt down and flipped over the corpse beside his feet, whereupon his expression darkened.

Not only had he seen this person before, but he had also gotten acquainted with him under the Iron Curtain. Qianye had once rescued a Zhao clan squad after returning to the Iron Curtain. Back then, the unit was in a precarious situation. As a champion, this person had the power to escape, but he fought on relentlessly against a force many times his own until Qianye arrived.

It was because of this contribution that he was recognized by the family, who decided to pour resources into nurturing him.

He didn’t die even while completely surrounded under the Iron Curtain. Who would’ve thought he would fall in this eerie forest? He was still so young, yet all of his dreams were now gone with the wind.

Qianye’s felt an inexplicable weight in his heart like a stone dragging down on it. The cruel bloody battle under the Iron Curtain had polished a batch of elite warriors and also made it easier to acknowledge those fighting alongside each other. Despite the short period of interaction, Qianye had recognized those Zhao clan warriors he had fought alongside with as comrades.

Comrade: the weight of this word was even above a friend.

Qianye ran his hand over the body, then opened up the battle armor to examine the wound. There was only one lethal point on the side of the neck, an extremely clean-cut blade wound. The stab was quick, steady, and cut right through his cervical spine to kill him with a single blow.

It would seem this warrior, named Zhao Shizhong, had encountered an unparalleled opponent. But the problem was that his stab had gone in too easily without giving Zhao Shizhong an opportunity to defend. That was the only way such a wound could’ve been inflicted.

However, Qianye knew the man’s combat strength fairly well. Between the ranks of dark viscount and count, only someone at the level of Zhao Jundu utilizing his Omniscient Seal domain would be able to kill him instantly in this manner.

Qianye himself was confident about killing Zhao Shizhong, but not with such a wound or in such a clean manner. It was so clean that there weren’t even traces of a struggle. Could the Zhao clan have encountered a major character above the level of marquis?

Qianye stretched out a finger and pressed on the man’s throat, then gradually moved downward. Strands of origin power shot out from his fingertips and entered Zhao Shizhong’s body. Qianye sensed an abnormality as his finger moved over the corpse’s chest. He pressed down lightly and found the skin below his fingers sink briefly without bouncing back up, thus forming a cavity.

This cavity was larger and deeper than those normally formed on corpses. Moreover, it wasn’t caused by a loss of muscle elasticity because even the chest bones had caved in. The force behind Qianye’s fingers wasn’t strong, and it was certainly not enough to push the chest wall in. Apparently, the skeleton of the corpse was exceptionally brittle for some reason.

Qianye pondered for a moment, then said while clenching his teeth, “My apologies, Brother.”

He drew his military knife and cut open the corpse’s chest to inspect the internal organs. The organs exposed after dissecting the chest had all been shattered, and some of them had even turned into formless mush.

It was clear that Zhao Shizhong had suffered a secret attack. There was no injury on the surface, but the internal organs had all been destroyed. That was why he had lost the ability to resist and suffered a lethal stab. In truth, that stab had only severed his last opportunity at struggling. His vitality had already come to an end when his organs were crushed.

As a champion, there were no blind spots to his origin defenses, only its strength differed. However, just what kind of attack was able to pierce through a rank-twelve champion’s defenses to destroy his internal organs?

Qianye’s heart skipped a beat as a bad premonition came over him. He recalled that his own Eye Ability: Control was such a power.

Eye Ability: Control was able to ignore origin defenses and directly affect the other party’s internal organs. However, Qianye had tried it before and found that the power of control wasn’t powerful enough to immediately destroy the opponents’ vital organs. He usually employed this ability to produce openings and thus lead the tempo of the battle.

But Zhao Shizhong’s killer had directly wrecked most of his organs through his elite champion defenses. This destructive power was so much more powerful than Control.

Qianye exhaled deeply as a faint sense of unrest suffused his heart, but there was also something in his subconscious mind instinctively preventing him from looking deeper into this. He inspected the remaining corpses and discovered that all of them had died in the same manner. Only the lower level warriors were left with intact organs, killed from the outside in by an obviously powerful opponent.

The bloody corpses thrown away here had begun eliciting a reaction from the sludge. The substance absorbed the blood continuously like loose sand, and the parts that had absorbed enough blood were squirming about, gradually climbing higher and extending upward along the body. Before long, the soil would cover up the corpse completely.

Qianye frowned as the scene before his eyes gave him a feeling of great discomfort. He recalled his experiences in the Black Forest and felt that this eerie substance might also be able to devour flesh to use as nutrients. He slashed open the sludge to move all the corpses to another place. There, he poured fuel upon them and set them ablaze. He would rather have his old comrades burn to ashes than see them drown in this sludge.

Qianye stood beside the fire and watched as the flames raged on. The sludge, apparently afraid of the fire, shifted toward the surroundings. The parts that came in contact with the blaze caught on fire but didn’t burn too fiercely.

After a moment of standing beside the fire, Qianye headed deeper into the stone forest in the direction where the mysterious figure had vanished. At this moment, he was no longer in the mood to explore the secrets of these mysterious trees and only wanted to catch up to the person related to the death of the Zhao clan soldiers.

The raging flames had already become quite blurry when Qianye glanced from several dozen meters away. After advancing further again, he could no longer see the raging pillar of flames without using his True Sight. From this, it was obvious that the constraints on perception were especially powerful in these woods.

Qianye had also wanted to draw enemies over with the flames since his True Sight range was clearly longer than the other people. If someone did approach, he would be the first to discover the enemy and launch a lethal attack. But now, it seemed the effects weren’t so good—even igniting the giant tree would only allow people within a hundred meters to see the flames.

Qianye traversed the forest at a constant speed while observing the surrounding movements.

Hundreds of meters away, a pair of eyes was observing Qianye through a specialized scope, and the center of those bat-shaped crosshairs had been following his head around this entire time.

However, no gunshots rang out even as Qianye left the scope’s range.

Nighteye was hidden in the crown of a distant tree, her aura completely blending into the surroundings. She had a sniper rifle of exquisite craftsmanship in her arms, through which she was observing the surrounding area.

She slowly got up a while after Qianye’s departure, then disassembled and put away her sniper rifle.

The scenery beside her became slightly distorted as the silhouette of a demonkin appeared. The vertical eye on his forehead was emitting a faint green light as he shot Nighteye a suspicious glance. “Didn’t you find anything? Why do I feel some abnormal origin power fluctuations there?”

“You can go and take a look if you have doubts,” Nighteye replied with a similar coldness.

That demonkin frowned slightly, then said, “Your Majesty, I meant no offense. Although I have the Unshrouding Eye, I am far from being your match. That‘s why I am here as support and to protect you.”

Nighteye didn’t comment on this matter. “You may withdraw.”

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-Legion-'s Thoughts

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TL: Legion   ED: Moxie

     


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