Heaven Wood Realm.
Tall trees seemed to pierce the clouds with strange houses built on the thick branches.
Each ancient tree seemed to have hundreds or even thousands of hanging wooden houses.
In one of the largest of them gathered Winged Race clansmen of all ages, male and female. All of them wore a frown.
Lina and Stanca were among them.
The latter was covered in wounds. He had just returned and was reporting what had happened to the Winged Race patriarch from where he knelt on the ground.
"Green Wood Realm, under my gaze, was consumed and assimilated by the Dark Shadow World. None of our clansmen there was able to escape..."
Stanca's expression was sorrowful. His head hung low and he didn't dare to look at the Winged Race’s patriarch, Kermit.
Lina added from the side, "The shadow beings are more terrifying than we anticipated. We can only fight them if we gather all of our forces."
She paused and added, "But even then, our victory would not be certain"
The experts of the Winged Race heard Stanca and Lina's words in silence.
They felt a mountainous pressure.
Lina and Stanca had led a group of Winged Race clansmen to investigate the missing realms.
In the end, Lina came back through God Realm, and Stanca... came back with three other surviving Winged Race clansmen.
Everyone else had died.
"This is a catastrophe."
Kermit, the Winged Race patriarch, sighed deeply. He also was at his wit's end.
"What should we do?"
This question was on everyone’s mind
According to Lina and Stanca, even if the Winged Race used all its strength, they might not be a match for the shadow beings.
Should they give up now?
The universe was vast, but the realms suitable for the Winged Race to live were limited.
Also, many realms already had owners.
If the Winged Race abandoned this region of space and went elsewhere, they most likely would have to immediately fight another powerful race, causing them even more chaos.
The Winged Race might not be able to succeed and obtain a better living place than the present one.
If they did not give up, they would fight the shadow beings who had already made plans for their realm.
The Winged Race was facing the biggest crisis in their long history. If they could not overcome this... their race would quickly decline.
"Maybe we can ask other races to help?" a Winged Race warrior softly said.
"Shadow beings aren’t a good match for any living race." Kermit frowned. "If the other races agree to help us, they will demand compensation. I fear… the price will be far beyond our capabilities. Also, only powerful races like the God Race, the Spirit Race, or the Soul Race have experience fighting the shadow beings and may be able to drive them away. Once we ask for aid, the Winged Race... will lose our independence and become vassals of those transcendent bloodline races."
"We will lose our freedom."
The Winged Race warrior heard Kermit's explanation and grew silent.
As the Winged Race was being overwhelmed, a Winged Race clansman hurried in. "Patriarch! Qin Lie asks for an audience!"
Lina and Stanca shook.
Inside the room, the other Winged Race clansmen suddenly grew alert.
The name of Qin Lie was recently very famous in the universe. The Winged Race was a relatively strong race and naturally knew of Qin Lie's feats.
Lina, who had just returned, came back to Heaven Wood Realm from God Realm with Qin Lie's help.
Due to this, her impression of Qin Lie was rather good.
"Invite him!" Kermit shouted.
"But, but he came with Bredo of the Bone Race." The messenger had a conflicted expression. "Bredo also came with a giant Corpse Demon. That Corpse Demon... used to be a Giant Star Beast."
"Bone Race, Giant Star Beast!" Kermit stilled and then sighed. "Have them come. We... are in dire need of a joyful surprise."
"Understood." The Winged Race warrior hurriedly left.
The Winged Race and the Bone Race never interacted. The realms of the Bone Race were always full of deathly aura which disgusted the Winged Race.
Similarly, the Bone Race disliked the Winged Race's Heaven Wood Realm.
If not for the special situation, the moment Bredo and the Corpse Demon appeared in Heaven Wood Realm, they would have been driven away by the Winged Race.
But this time, it was different.
Bredo came with Qin Lie...
"Lina, Stanca, that Qin Lie... what do you think of him?" Kermit asked.
Stanca's expression grew serious. He said, "Worthy of befriending."
Lina thought for a moment before saying, "The shadow beings are interested in Spirit Realm. At least, in the short term, we share a common enemy."
"That is enough." Kermit nodded.
Inside the room, the Winged Race warriors were all terrified of the shadow beings. If there was someone that could help take on the pressure for them, they would welcome them.
"I heard that this person managed to help the Bone Race drive away one of Castor's avatars in the Bone World. Because of him, Castor's plan for the Bone Race failed. Soon after, the Bone Race and the God Race allied." Kermit's expression was doubtful. "There are many rumors about Qin Lie. They say that he has Perfect Blood, is about to become a Devil Monarch and is deeply trusted by the God Race. I cannot certify of the rumors’ legitimacy though."
"An Hao of the God Race, Lieyan Zhao, and Han Che are in Spirit Realm. I saw them during my trip back," Lina said..
"Qin Lie possessing Perfect Blood should be true," Stanca said.
"I do not believe a mere mixed-blood would be so powerful. Defeating one of Castor's avatars... this is ridiculous," said an old Winged Race clansman shaking his head.
"Yes, I also do not believe it. He is too young. I've never heard of him before," another Winged Race clansman said.
"Yes, his rise was so quick and incredible. I believe it’s a lie."
"I hope that he is as powerful as the rumors say."
Most of the Winged Race clansmen had never seen Qin Lie before and only heard rumors about him recently.
These old people all knew that rumors... would frequently exaggerate.
They held hope for Qin Lie and the never heard of Spirit Realm, but that hope... was not especially great.
Amidst their doubts and discussions, the Corpse Demon made from the Giant Star Beast floated above the ancestral lands of the Winged Race.
Qin Lie, Bredo and Salleh abandoned the beast and came in front of Kermit and Lina under the ushering of the Winged Race clansman.
Lina looked and found that the Qin Lie in front of her had a familiar soul presence but was not completely the same as the one she had seen in Spirit Realm.
Stanca had a more sensitive soul perception than the majority of Winged Race clansmen. He sensed and asked, "Presence of the Soul Race..."
Qin Lie grinned, nodded and said, "Just a subsoul. My main body is in Flaming Sun Purgatory busy comprehending deeper laws of the Abyss."
At these words, the Winged Race clansmen were shocked.
Qin Lie appeared to have a rank ten soulline and was a powerful Soul Race clansman.
But this Qin Lie was just a subsoul...
In their understanding, the main body was usually much stronger than a subsoul. If the Qin Lie in front of them was rank ten, then wouldn't his main body... be even stronger?
They had no choice but to immediately acknowledge Qin Lie’s strength.