Chapter 849: Scapegoat

“But they say that the entrance to the tomb is beneath the mountain,” Bai Zhaoju objected with surprise.

“That’s not a mountain, it’s a corpse!” Lu Yun corrected solemnly. “The mountain is wrapped around the corpse, which has mostly decayed and is filled with dreadful corpse poison. The three of us won’t be able to withstand it.” He quirked his lips with ruefulness.

“A corpse? Whose?!” Bai Zhaoju’s eyes widened enormously.

"How would I know whose body it is?” grumbled Lu Yun. “Start digging here. Sixty-eight kilometers down lies another entrance to the tomb.” He pointed at his feet.

“You dare treat this emperor as manual labor?” Bai Zhaoju glared at him.

“What, you want me to do it instead?” Lu Yun shrugged. “With my strength, I’ll be burnt to a crisp before I get five kilometers down.”

“Fine then, I’ll do it.” Bai Zhaoju waved a brilliantly gleaming sword into his hand that made Lu Yun’s heart spasm painfully.

This sword…

Traceless!

Lu Yun was very familiar with it since he’d refined the sword. Who would’ve thought it’d be Bai Zhaoju’s personal weapon!

Whoosh!

A ray of brilliant splendor flared from the sword and stabbed into the earth beneath their feet. A thieves’ tunnel running sixty-eight kilometers long quickly appeared within a hundred breaths. At the same time, a fiery breath spewed out of the passageway, sending Lu Yun scrambling backward.

“There’s another legend!” Bai Zhaoju turned incomparably grave. “That year when Taiyi entered the tomb, he didn’t make it out alive. He died in there and only his obsession walked out. His obsession gave the Bell of Chaos to Tushan and then left to fight the connate demon gods. It ultimately dispersed in battle!”

Lu Yun took a look inside his robes. That was what Luo Houluo had said as well, and his goal inside the tomb was plainly some treasure belonging to Taiyi.

“Taiyi’s true form is a three-legged suncrow. He is a connate great god born of the sun, and he’s also a mighty monster spirit,” Bai Zhaoju continued, “I’m looking for the sole true feather on his body. What about you?”

History might’ve regarded Bai Zhaoju, Ling Weiyang, Zhi Guangji, and Chi Biaonu as four peak powerhouses, but they weren’t born as such. They all developed and later grew into their strength.

“Me?” Lu Yun frowned slightly and thought back to Luo Houluo again. The demon god likely wanted Taiyi’s body so he could come back to life in it! “I’m just curious, I just want to take a look around in it,” he changed the subject.

Bai Zhaoju took a close look at the boy’s face and nodded.

“Then refine that golden spirit pearl first before we go in.” He was no idiot, he could tell that something was up from Lie Shan’s expression and that acting normal was paramount.

In this era, the path of refining items had yet to rise. Connate treasures—naturally forming ones—were the equipment of choice, but they were also extremely rare. Bai Zhaoju had given one to Lu Yun so easily—plainly at the behest of Fuxi, who wanted him to take good care of humanity’s rising star.

Here, refining treasures were done in the most primitive manner of melding one’s blood with it. Lu Yun hadn’t collected any useful treasures yet, but this pearl was also a bit too powerful for him.

“Eh?” His expression changed in the next moment when he realized that the pearl harbored an enormously strong nascent spirit. He would be able to use this orb as his replica as soon as he introduced his mind to it. Lu Yun looked at Bai Zhaoju, greatly startled. With this nascent spirit present, he made this powerful treasure his in the blink of an eye.

“The pearl was mine, but you can probably guess who made the thing inside.” Bai Zhaoju smiled. “Let’s go, the golden spirit pearl is a connate treasure while the fire below is hardly that. It won’t be able to do anything to the pearl.”

Lu Yun stood up with a nod. Meanwhile, the little fox poked a head out of his robes and looked at the thieves’ tunnel with a hint of resentment.

……

Black-red flames suffused the tunnel. Rather than an ordinary fire, these flames were a poisonous fire. The poison it contained could be corpse poison or something else even more terrifying. But just like Bai Zhaoju said, the golden spirit pearl was a connate treasure and simply shrugged off the fire.

Sparkling radiance cascaded out of the pearl, enveloping Lu Yun and Bai Zhaoju in a safe zone that was six meters across.

“What’s going on?” Bai Zhaoju suddenly stopped with a frown. “Who’s there?! Get out here!”

“Don’t move and don’t look back!” Almost jumping out of his skin, Lu Yun quickly steadied Bai Zhaoju, deathly afraid that he’d turn back.

“Have you noticed it too?” Bai Zhaoju remained looking steadily forward. “There’s a third set of footsteps here… did someone follow us in?”

“No, no one did.” Lu Yun shook his head. “It’s probably a random wild ghost looking for a scapegoat. Just ignore it.”

“A random wild ghost?” Bai Zhaoju couldn’t help a shudder.

The tunnel was sixty-eight kilometers long and pitch black. Apart from the circle of light cast by the golden spirit pearl, everything else was so dark that one wouldn’t be able to make out their hand if they reached forward.

There were only three sets of footsteps at first, but they grew to such a thundering crowd in the end that they threatened to deafen Lu Yun’s ears.

“Don’t look back and don’t look at them, no matter what you do!” he roared. “As soon as you see them, you’ll be dragged away to be their scapegoat!”

Bai Zhaoju nodded, his expression as usual and continued walking forward.

“Just how many people have died here for there to be so many wandering ghosts?” For some reason, Lu Yun thought of a terrifying kind of zombie in the future. Those zombies didn’t have much offensive power, but they assimilated whoever touched them. It was actually rather similar to the group of ghosts behind them now.

“Suncrows Plain used to be a battlefield, so who knows how many died when Great God Yi and Celestial Emperor Taiyi fought?” Bai Zhaoju chuckled. “For a long period of time after the great god died, many entered the tomb to look for his bow that could shoot down the spirits of suncrows. However, very few made it out alive.”

Since there was no cycle of reincarnation in the great wilderness, souls remained wherever they died.

“We’re here!” Lu Yun stopped.

“This is only the fifty-fourth kilometer, we haven’t reached the end yet.” Bai Zhaoju blinked.

“We dug sixty-eight kilometers to trick the terrible guy below. The real entrance is at the fifty-fourth kilometer!” Lu Yun whispered, “if we travel to the end of the tunnel, we’ll run into a horrifying existence. We’ll be able to enter the tomb if we dig here!”

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