Chapter 140: Whispers
Using the frost energy and freezing himself inside solid ice, Qin Lie stopped the Eclipse Insect’s poison from invading him.
From the moment he saw the Eclipse Insects and felt his head grow heavier and heavier, he already noticed that it wasn’t good. But still he was one step too slow and could not immediately stop the poison from spreading.
When he had stopped grinding the Dragon Bone Jade and used all his power to resist the poison’s invasion, it was already too late.
His legs, his nerves, his bones, and even the flow of his blood had become slow and weak due to the spreading poison. He quickly lost all control of his body.
Luckily, his countless attempts to incite the frost energy in his Natal Palace had finally succeeded at the most critical moment, and they instantly spilled out of his two ice ball Natal Palaces.
At this moment he had withdrawn his soul consciousness, little by little, into the Soul Suppressing Orb and was in the state of Thoughtless Tranquility. He had let the Soul Suppressing Orb wrap around his soul while listening to the trio, Tang Siqi, Yi Yuan and Lian Rou, speak.
“I’ll go and refine the concoction first.” Seeing that Qin Lie had frozen himself, Lian Rou instantly calmed down. “As long as his current condition can be preserved, once I refine the concoction and splash it all over his body, allowing it to seep slowly into his body… then the Eclipse Insect’s poison will be neutralized.”
Yi Yuan suddenly extended a head and picked up the Eclipse Insects on Qin Lie’s body one after another. He brought them close to his eyes and closely examined them. “So this is how an Eclipse Insect looks? I heard that these poisonous insects are quite impressive, but I’ve never actually seen one before.”
“Don’t get yourself poisoned.” Just as Tang Siqi relaxed, she saw Yi Yuan pick up the Eclipse Insects and couldn’t help but retreat a few steps in fear, putting some distance between Yi Yuan and herself.
“There’s no need to be afraid Senior Sister Tang. I may have not seen Eclipse Insects before, but I do have some level of understanding regarding these poisonous insects.” Yi Yuan smiled coolly. “An Eclipse Insect’s poison is its essence, its brain, its life. Once they spit out their poison, then their life is gone, so there’s no way they can survive.”
Seeing that Tang Siqi had calmed down, Yi Yuan continued, “Plus, Brother Qin had frozen himself with extreme cold. That coldness is so terrifying that even I… find it a little unbearable. How do you think these few poisonous bugs will fare? Even if they aren’t dead, they would’ve frozen to death now. How can they possibly still harm anyone?”
“Is that how it is?” Tang Siqi did not believe Yi Yuan. She was only looking at Lian Rou.
Lian Rou also nodded. “This Yi Yuan is crazy, but he isn’t stupid. Everything he said is the truth. The Eclipse Insect’s poison is their essence, Once it has been spat out, they will die.”
Hearing her praise, Yi Yuan’s face was filled with a smile and a triumphant look.
“I need to go back to the cave at Flame Volcano to refine the concoction. I’ll leave this place to you two.” Lian Rou herself knew that every second counted. “Whoever wants to kill Qin Bing must be watching still. It will be best if at least one of you can stay here and prevent whoever that is from hurting Qin Bing while he is still frozen.”
Tang Siqi’s eyes shone with a brilliant sparkle, and after she calmed down, she recovered her usual cunning. “Let’s say that Qin Bing is dead!”
She looked at Lian Rou and snorted coldly. “We’ll go out together and leave Yi Yuan to take care of Qin Bing. Whoever wants him dead must be watching from the crowd outside to confirm that Qin Bing is truly dead. I’ll go and talk with Elder Tong and have him investigate a little to see who has asked about Eclipse Insects or who just returned from the south…”
“Good idea,” Yi Yuan praised. “If we say Qin Bing is dead, then maybe that certain someone will let his guard down and reveal himself.”
After the trio summed up their plans softly inside the stone tower, Yi Yuan continued to stay beside Qin Lie and leaving Tang Siqi and Lian Rou to open the door and proceed with the plan.
There were many heads outside the stone door. Many outer and inner sect disciples had heard of the news and arrived, and they were all gathered at the entrance stretching their necks to look over.
Pang Feng, Tian Jianhao, Liang Shaoyang, and Yin Hao were also among the crowd. Even Ouyang Jingjing, who was cultivating quietly beneath the spirit pattern pillars had paid attention to the commotion.
“Siqi, it’s too late to save him. The poison has entered his head and no one can treat him now.” Once she walked out, Lian Rou softly sighed, her eyes filled with helplessness.
An expression of regret also appeared on Tang Siqi’s beautiful face. “Never mind then. We can only do our best. If we really can’t save him, then that is his fate.”
While speaking, Lian Rou and Tang Siqi looked at the crowd and observed the outer and inner sect disciples that had gathered.
“I’ll go back first.” After watching for a while, Lian Rou asked the onlookers to split up so she could head on her own to Flame Volcano.
Tang Siqi closed the stone door behind her back and frowned. “He’s gone, so let him enjoy some peace and quiet. Go back and do your own things. I will explain the matter to Elder Tong and have him drag out the bastard who dared to use Eclipse Insects to harm the people of his own sect!” Her eyes were fierce as she glanced severely towards Liang Shaoyang, Tian Jianhao, and the others.
Tian Jianhao and Liang Shaoyang’s expressions remained the same. There was nothing odd to be found, nor did they let slip anything through their body language.
Then, she too left the stone tower and went to the front yard to look for Tong Jihua. “Uncle Tong, that Qin Bing had been bitten by Eclipse Insects. Someone is trying to kill him.”
At the front yard, inside an Armament Sect outer sect cultivation room, Tang Siqi briefly explained the situation.
“Qin Bing sealed himself with frost energy so the Eclipse Insect’s poison could not continue to spread. Lian Rou said that she can treat him, so I left Yi Yuan back there just in case.” Tang Siqi did not hide anything from Tong Jihua. “Lian Rou and I have told the people outside that Qin Bing has passed away, hoping that the culprit would let his guard down and slip up.”
Tong Jihua listened with a dark face. “It has only been a few months and something like that has already happened. To kill the people of his own sect with Eclipse Insects, the murderer must not be someone ordinary to act in such a ruthless and diabolical manner.”
“Lian Rou deduced that… the murderer may be worried that I was too close with Qin Bing which was why they killed him,” said Tang Siqi as she bowed her head.
“Mn, I know. You don’t need to think about it.” Tong Jihua nodded and consoled her a little before continuing, “Since the matter happened at outer sect, naturally, I am responsible. I will begin an investigation on the Eclipse Insect’s origin, and I hope to find out who has asked looking for information about the Eclipse Insects and who just returned from the south as of late.”
“Thank you for your trouble, Uncle Tong.”
“You don’t have to thank me, this is my duty after all. I’ll contact you when I have more information.”
“Okay. I’ll be leaving then.”
“Shaoyang, what are you frowning about? Isn’t that Qin Bing dead already?” Yin Hao asked in surprise.
Inside Liang Shaoyang’s stone tower. The man scowled, and the brutal light in his eyes did not disappear. “Not necessarily. I have grown up in Dark Shadow Tower, and there is one thing that my father told me that I will always remember in my heart—without seeing the body with my own eyes and checking it myself, I must never assume that my target is dead!”
“Although the Eclipse Insect’s poison spreads slowly, it is extremely terrifying. If he was poisoned at midnight, then it will have spread throughout his entire body by morning, and once it enters the brain, it basically becomes a hopeless situation.” Yin Hao estimated inside his heart, “According to the time, there is no doubt the poison must have entered his brain. And now, yet another hour has passed, so he is guaranteed to be dead.”
“Theoretically, that is true, but there is always a chance.” Liang Shaoyang’s eyebrows were tightly locked as he tapped the table repeatedly with his finger. Suddenly, he asked, “How did you acquire the Eclipse Insect?”
“I bought it from an outer sect foreign delegate. He had previously visited the southern swamps to look for medicine. He caught these Eclipse Insects on his way back.” Yin Hao had realized Liang Shaoyang’s carefulness as his own face turned serious. “An outer sect foreign delegate normally would not operate inside the sect. My dealings with him was also outside the city, so it shouldn’t be discovered by anyone.”
“There is always a chance, and this ‘chance’ is what I hate the most!” A ruthless light shone out of Liang Shaoyang’s eyes as he said in a low tone, “Scrub it clean.”
Watching him, Yin Hao felt chilled at the bottom of his heart as he nodded lightly, “I’ll get it done right away.” With an expression of fearful respect, he retreated. Once he exited the stone tower, he felt that his own back was drenched in sweat.
He knew Shaoyang. He knew that if he didn’t deal with the matter appropriately and allowed people to connect the matter of Eclipse Insect with him, then in order to prevent suspicion from falling onto himself, Liang Shaoyang would definitely act beforehand—he would kill him as well.
Therefore, in order to avoid Liang Shaoyang’s murderous intent to fall on himself, he had no choice but to take care of that outer sect foreign delegate as soon as possible.
"Brother Qin, the target you’re chasing is far too bright which is why your path is filled with danger. Heh, I have my work cut out for me since Lian Rou is pretty average in most people’s eyes, and since she is always together with Senior Sister Tang, she appears even less obvious, so my competitors are truly far and few.”
Yi Yuan moved a chair over and sat right beside Qin Lie, talking randomly.
“But this incident changed my impression about Senior Sister Tang too. I didn’t expect that she actually has a good heart. I thought that when she found out that you were poisoned she would gloat about it and feel relieved on the inside. She has quarreled with you so many times, and every time she came over, she would walk in with a cold mask before exiting with burning rage. Heh! I even thought that she couldn’t wait for you to die…”
“Brother Qin, I can see that your cultivation is at the early stage of the Natal Opening Realm. But that icy aura that you released from your body… is truly extraordinary. I’ve only seen you fight against Tian Jianhao once and nothing else after that, but I can feel that your true strength isn’t weak. Plus, I have no idea about your background either, so I’m slightly curious about you, you know?”
While Qin Lie was in the state of Thoughtless Tranquility—perhaps he was bored—Yi Yuan spoke rather casually and talked to himself.
Qin Lie could neither move nor talk. His soul consciousness was shrunk inside the Soul Suppressing Orb, and he could only listen passively to Yi Yuan’s nonsense.
Sometime in the afternoon, Tang Siqi walked in. “Yi Yuan, go get something to eat. I’ve eaten already, so I came here to switch shifts with you.”
“What did Elder Tong say?” Yi Yuan asked.
“He said that he will do his best to investigate the matter,” replied Tang Siqi .
Yi Yuan nodded, “I do believe in Elder Tong’s abilities. Alright, I’ll go out to eat and will be back in an hour.” Once he finished, he exited the stone tower and shut the stone door tightly.
At this time, the fact that Qin Lie had died from the Eclipse Insect had already been spread outside. Many outer and inner sect disciples had already heard about it.
It was also why no one continued to gather and obstruct the door to watch. They had all gone back to busying themselves.
Tang Siqi sat on the chair Yi Yuan had left behind and turned her head to look at the frozen Qin Lie. This was the first time she looked at him seriously. “When you don’t speak and don’t put on an ugly face, you actually look quite good. Just like how you’re still acceptable when you can’t move right now and your consciousness is frozen…”
She had assumed that Qin Lie had lost consciousness and sealed off everything. Suddenly, she walked beside Qin Lie, leaned down, and stared at Qin Lie’s face. She even carefully stroked his face before withdrawing her jade-like finger with a shiver, muttering to herself, “This guy, I wonder what kind of spirit art he’s cultivating. So cold…”
After a while, her beautiful eyes began to lose focus as she stared at Qin Lie and all of a sudden whispered, “Did you really come for me? Have you done everything to get me to notice you? To make me pay attention to you? Just who are you? I don’t know you, and I’ve also never seen you before…”
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