Chapter 163 – The Terrifying Vine

The darkness was like a swamp that wrapped around in endless layers. Caught within, it was so deep that it left one unable to struggle; they could only be eventually swallowed and finally reduced to bones. No, perhaps it would be broken bones, because the overwhelmingly tyrannical strength rolling out from here was enough to tear a corpse to shreds and grind it into countless fragments.

Thinking of such a miserable fate, Qin Yu loudly gasped for breath. He clenched his teeth in the darkness before slumping to the ground. His chest heaved up and down like bellows. The only thoughts in his heart were that the words Old Sea said weren’t trustworthy and that Soupman was a bastard. He roared out curses in his heart.

It was only after a long time that he managed to restore some strength. Within the dim rays of light, he looked up.

This huge underground space was covered by crawling vines. Their sturdiness surpassed his imagination. The parts that occasionally stood upright were like ancient towering trees. Countless roots were born from the vines. They drilled into the earth, drawing in nutrients. But, it would be impossible for these vines to grow to such a scale merely by relying on that.

Qin Yu’s lips twitched. The root-like section that Soupman had shown him had really been taken from here. It must have been hard for that old bastard to find such a tiny section from this colossal thing.

Bang –

There was a sudden loud noise. In the distance, a thick vine burst apart and an overbearing strength rampaged outwards. It tore the surroundings to shreds with branches and leaves fluttering everywhere. The explosion created a chain reaction and several small-scale explosions followed suit. The vine was like a living creature as it crept up and rapidly grew.

After several breaths of time, all traces of the explosion vanished. The broken leaves and branches were also reabsorbed, making it seem as if everything just now had been an illusion.

But it wasn’t an illusion in the end…

Qin Yu’s complexion paled. If he were placed there, even with his potent Demon Body he feared he would have been torn to pieces by that explosion…Soupman, you old bastard! Of course, Qin Yu was able to guess that this situation wasn’t too related to Soupman to begin with. However, he was simply unable to offend the one who he believed was involved with this, so he could only vent his complaints on Soupman.

Right now, this vine was filled with a tyrannical strength, making it like an unstable volcano. The merest outside stimulation – such as running into it or stepping on it – was likely to cause an explosion. He looked up towards the thick jungle of vines and decided he absolutely could not step within.

But if he didn’t do anything, even if he managed to leave here the royal palace wouldn’t give up on him. Qin Yu thought it over and finally forced out a smile. Whatever. He might as well give it a try, otherwise that old bastard Soupman really might leave him to fend for himself here.

Divine sense reached out from his body and carefully swept around. When he didn’t notice anything strange, he took out the Silence Stone and held it in his palm. Then, he flipped his hand and a foot…no, 1.2 feet of sea blue light blossomed.

The deep blue light shined onto some branches of the vine. It slightly trembled in response, and just as Qin Yu panicked that a dreadful strength would gush out and was about to draw backwards, the vine actually retreated on its own initiative. Then, like currents of water, countless vines gave way, forming a straight channel that led deep within.

Astonishment lit up Qin Yu’s eyes. He never imagined that this vine would have a basic level of intelligence and would be able to feel the little blue lamp’s strength. Did it open a channel for him so that he could go straight to the root for treatment?

Indecision clouded his face. Qin Yu took deep breaths for a long time and then walked forwards. He had certainly prepared himself. If any problems occurred he would instantly use the Blood Escape Art.

Luckily, the vine seemed to know that this matter concerned its life and death. Occasional sounds of erupting thunder sounded in the distance, but after being covered by layers upon layers of branches and leaves, Qin Yu wasn’t affected at all.

He smoothly made his way forwards.

But Qin Yu was still startled. The underground space was larger than he imagined and the size of the vine was even more terrifying than he first thought. Soon, a large black stone appeared in his line of sight. Well, rather than being called large, it was more appropriate to call it a hill. A network of roots wrapped around it in endless layers and all the vines extended out from here; this was clearly the main root.

Qin Yu was silently shocked. It was hard to believe that these vines were formed from a single plant. But, these exposed roots and the dry cracks all over its surface emitted the aura of passing years. This plant must have survived for a long, long time.

Thinking about it, Qin Yu walked over to the black stone. He opened his hand and allowed the light of the little blue lamp to shine on a thick root. He was aware that the little blue lamp possessed an incredible promoting ability towards the growth of sea spirits, but what happened still caused him to jolt up.

He saw that beneath the deep blue light, the root suddenly trembled and began to grow at a speed visible to the naked eye. The withered surface broke off in pieces. After a few breaths of time, the root had swelled into a circle, and even the surrounding roots began to wriggle in growth.

On the black, hill-sized stone, the network of roots began to sway and twist about like a living creature. This scene was particularly macabre and left one feeling a chill in the depths of their heart.

Pa –

Five fingers closed together and the blue light was hidden away.

Qin Yu had a dignified expression.

Rumble rumble –

With a loud rumble, the entire underground space shook. The thick vines seemed to be angrily shouting. But, what happened afterwards was unexpected. A vine as thick as an arm drilled out from the ground and delivered a black fruit to him.

The fruit was about the size of a child’s fist. The surface was a hard shell, but after carefully smelling it, there was a faint fragrance. Qin Yu had a strange look in his eyes. What was the meaning behind this? Did it want to make a transaction with him? He reached out a hand and plucked the fruit. Investigating it a little, he was left shaken.

This common black fruit contained a preposterous strength; it could be called a bomb! But, the strength within was stable, as if it had just achieved a suitable balance. As if…it could be absorbed.

Of course, if he were to directly inject magic power, the delicate balance inside would collapse and this black fruit would transform immediately into a truly terrifying bomb.

The vine continued to rage around, as if saying: you have received my thing, so hurry and give me the blue light, otherwise I will be angry!

Qin Yu’s eyes flashed. He slowly said, “You should be able to understand me. I can help you, but with such a fruit, just one is not enough.”

Whoosh –

Whoosh –

With the sound of breaking air, ten vines shot into the air, each one dangling a fruit.

Indeed…it was quite understanding!

A night passed. When the little blue lamp’s light vanished, there were now 36 black fruits in Qin Yu’s storage ring. This seemed to be everything, or perhaps it was the vine’s bottom line. No matter what Qin Yu said, he couldn’t obtain any more.

Of course, it hadn’t received nothing from that investment. The black stone was no longer visible beneath the endless thick roots wrapping around it. The roots had nearly doubled in size, and as for the roots that had been directly shined upon by the little blue lamp, they were so thick that it would take several people holding hands to wrap around them. The surface of the roots seemed to be cast from metal.

Rumble –

Rumble –

This was the shaking of the vine branches. Although they didn’t seem to have changed much on the surface, they actually grew far more tenacious within and became more resilient with a higher bearing capacity.

The tyrannical strength that had flooded out was now thoroughly sealed away. Although this didn’t completely fix the problem, at least for a good period of time there wouldn’t be any issues.

Qin Yu put away the little blue lamp and lightly said, “I have fulfilled my promise. It’s about time I leave.”

Bang –

Vines erupted, shooting in from all directions, instantly weaving together into a giant cage around Qin Yu.

Qin Yu frowned. His expression didn’t change. “Believe me. If I have a method to save you, I have a method to destroy you as well. Our transaction ends here today. When you have more black fruits you can exchange, I will come back. Of course, you may not believe me, but you will only have one chance to do so.”

A long silence followed. The vine seemed to be contemplating his words, or it could be ignoring him. Qin Yu’s aura gradually turned icy. He lifted his hand to reveal a pill.

It was a dirty brown color, like the color grass would be after it died.

Qin Yu spoke quietly, a chilling aura floating about him. ”This pill originates from a human alchemist cultivator; it is named Hundred Mile Desolace. It doesn’t have much use. Its only function is to infect spiritual plants. It needs just a single touch to infect, and once that happens the poison will duplicate without end, until it is completely uncontainable.

“Oh, for example, if I used it here. As long as I crushed this pill and blew it around, you would soon feel uncomfortable. Then, this discomfort would rapidly spread, gradually leaving you unable to breathe. The stabbing pain would be like blades cutting you to pieces. You would gradually decay into nothing, until you eventually fell to the ground. Before you died you might kill me, but believe me, you would die too.”

This pill came from Grandmaster Daoist Wuyuan who practiced the dao of poison, and the effect wasn’t exaggerated at all. After all, if he didn’t have such a card in his hand he wouldn’t have dared to take out the little blue lamp to rescue this vine, especially when it clearly had a level of intelligence.

The vine responded. The vines that wove into a giant cage began to rub against each other. A series of low and deep sounds fused together in the air, forming strange syllabic words.

“…You…keep…your…word…”

Beneath his black robe, Qin Yu’s eyes were cold. “You may not believe my words if you want.”

“…Good…”

The vines retreated, revealing a way out. Qin Yu took several steps out and stopped. “Concerning today’s events, I hope that no one else ever finds out. Otherwise, our agreement will become invalid.” He spoke without turning his head, as if everything was in his control. He walked further and further away until his figure was swallowed up by the dark.

Whoosh –

There was the sound of breaking air. Qin Yu stopped and clenched the poison pill tight in his palm. When he saved the vine, it had been because he had no other choice, otherwise the royal palace would never have let him go.

Thus, while Qin Yu knew that there would be trouble, he still did it. But, if he was really backed into a corner, he didn’t lack the courage to make a final stand with his life on the line.

Whoosh –

The darkness was torn apart. A thick vine stopped in front of him, emitting a faint light. Then, it fell to the ground. Qin Yu thought for a moment and stepped onto the vine. The tyrannical strength that bombarded him from all around seemed to be blocked by a shield, vanishing.

The vine shuttled through the darkness, racing towards the entrance.

Qin Yu’s tense heart relaxed a little. The vine had possessed sufficient wisdom to judge its own situation.

Right now it was safe, but it would inevitably absorb more and more of that tyrannical strength. Just like a dam that had been reinforced, if the water it blocked rose higher it would eventually be unable to withstand it.

Qin Yu was the only one who could save it.

Thus, it used this sort of action to compensate for its past behaviour and express its good intentions.

That was enough.

 

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