Chapter 185: Battle of the Emissaries (2)

The mantis stalks the cicada, unaware of the oriole behind.

None of the extraterritorial emissaries had expected something like this. They had all thought that they were home free as soon as they overcame the threefold soul-setting technique. There were even some who had begun to plan for their next move in order to seize Gu Qing’s soul for their own underworld.

But now was hardly the time for such thoughts. Zhou Xianlong’s single palm strike engulfed the entire area that they had been caged into. There was no avoiding it. As the terrifying pressure bore down, the ground began to rumble, and dust and dirt began to scatter into the air. The skin of the underworldly emissaries began to ripple like the surface of the lake, and their veins began to bulge and throb.

“Everyone… what are you still waiting for?!!” A wolf-headed emissary cried out as he found himself crushed against the ground, and cracks began to spread along the ground in the pattern of a spiderweb. The emissary screamed at the top of his voice, “We have to stand together! Block this attack, and we might be able to come out of this alive! Otherwise, we’re all going to die here!!”

As he spoke, the bones on his back began to bulge and crack. Then, with a sickening crunch, a scale made entirely out of his bones protruded out of his muscles and rose out of his back. One side of the scale held feathers, while the other side held a precious gemstone.

Buzz… As soon as the scale began to drift out of his body, the emissary’s back swiftly healed itself like a flower closing its petals. Then, as soon as it was out of the body, the side with the feather promptly sank down, instantly lessening the pressure of Zhou Xianlong’s palmstrike as though it were tilting the balance of power in their favour. The scattering smoke and dust even began to rise more slowly.

“Haa…” The wolf-headed emissary trembled as he glanced up into the sky. It’s too terrifying… This Judge is unexpectedly powerful. Yet before he could even take a breather, he suddenly heard a soft crack in the air.

Time seemed to freeze at this moment.

His jade-green eyes widened, and he trembled all over as he looked to the scales. It had only been in use for a short moment, and yet it had already begun cracking. In fact, the cracks were even extending and multiplying rapidly!

“No…” He exclaimed subconsciously with a tremor. But before he could even finish speaking, the smoke and dust in the air came crashing down with the rest of the torrential downpour, and a miserable scream echoed into the surroundings. When the dust settled, the only thing that remained was a massive pit where the wolf-headed emissary’s body had been. Wisps of Yin energy scattered wistfully into the surroundings.

A single blow had crushed it completely.

Not even a complete, genuine Yin artifact could counterbalance the force of a human Infernal Judge in Cathay.

“My god…” “By Hades’ name...” The remaining extraterritorial emissaries felt a chill run down their spines, and a sensation of electrifying terror crept through their skins. This time, not a single one of them hesitated any longer. With several loud bellows, each and every single one of the emissaries began to transform and contort their bodies.

“Damn it…” One of the emissaries that was half-man half-spider puffed up his chest and abdomen. With a fierce shriek, he spat out an ancient incense burner that swiftly released wisps of blue smoke into the surroundings. Yet, just like earlier, the incense burner was covered in cracks as quickly as it had appeared! 

“What are you still waiting for?!!” He screamed at the rest of the emissaries, “It’s only fifteen seconds… we’ve only got to hold out for fifteen seconds at most!”

“Everyone! Unleash your Yin artifacts right now! That’s our only hope!”

Boom, boom, boom! The luster of seven Yin artifacts gleamed brightly within the formation array. A broken crown, a crystal skull… each one of them spewed out copious amounts of dense Yin energy as they hovered imperiously in the air.

Everything appeared to stop still at that moment.

An indescribably suffocating feeling clouded everyone’s hearts. Even the students stared blankly at the sky from afar, completely ignoring the fact that they had already been soaked through by the torrential downpour. Everyone’s eyes were transfixed this one precious moment.

In the very next moment, the curtain of rain trembled violently, and then another palmstrike bore down once again.

It wasn’t quick, but it seemed to obscure all sources of light from the sky and block out the rain. Even the wind had to skirt around the illusory palm. From afar, it was obvious that the shape of a palm had appeared right in the heart of the downpour!

No escape.

“By Hades’ name…” One of the emissaires slowly shut his eyes and took a deep breath. Then, when he opened his eyes again, copious amounts of Yin energy instantly rushed into his Yin artifact like a massive whirlpool, “Ahhhhh!!!”

BOOM!

The southern district of the City of Salvation quaked violently, and the entire campus grounds sank down half a meter in the wake of an earth-shattering bang. The extraterritorial emissaries were once again sent flying together with the dirt and gravel around. Four Yin artifacts shattered at the same time, and their corresponding owners were reduced to wisps of Yin energy that quickly disappeared into the earth.

“How much longer do we have?” Qin Ye had already arrived at the edge of the First Academy of Cultivators. Nevertheless, he cautiously remained outside of the formation array he had set up, so that not a single human being was able to detect his presence. He stood on top of the roof of a building and gazed in the direction of the memorial hall.

“It’s right now.” Arthis responded.

“With your strength, the formation array would only last ten seconds. That’s the limit. We’ll deal with the rest.”

“An emissary’s life should be taken by the blade of an emissary after all. This is part of your duty.”

…………………………………………………

The ground trembled. The surroundings to the memorial hall was a mess. There were five extraterritorial emissaries left standing. The Yin artifacts possessed by these emissaries were clearly a cut above the rest. At the very least, they were able to withstand Zhou Xianlong’s powerful palm strike without shattering. That said, every single one of these emissaries were so terrified by what they had just seen that they had completely lost their will to fight.

Despair.

The difference in abilities was simply insurmountable. The mantis stalks the cicada, unaware of the oriole behind. To think that there was a hidden entity that had held back all this while just so that he could wipe them all out in one fell swoop!

“Who… just who the hell is it?!!” A Nipponese emissary’s teeth chattered as he sprang to his feet and barked in Nipponese, “What’s in it for you?!! You can’t seize his soul like that either! So why… why do you have to go so far?!”

“The glory days of Cathay’s Hell is long gone! Are you still willing to be its lapdog?! The Federation of Underworlds has already detected the empty shell that the Cathayan Hell has become, so why are you still turning your back on us?!!”

No response.

The other extraterritorial emissaries looked absolutely ashen as they desperately adjusted their own conditions, leaving the Nipponese emissary mourning like a dog that had lost its owner. His voice echoed through the night sky, only to be consumed by the heavy downpour.

He continued shrieking for the next two seconds until his voice went hoarse. Then, with a loud thud, he fell to the ground. Tears were streaming down his cheeks as he stared at the godlike existence that was hovering in the sky, “We were just one step away… one step…”

“I don’t believe it… I refuse to believe it! Izanami-sama… Shinigami 437 has let you down… Arrrggghhh!!”

Yet his voice was simply torn apart by the howling winds, almost as though it were declaring that this was the end of their road.

“But… even in death, I refuse to die by the hands of a Cathayan Judge!” Shinigami 437 gnashed his teeth and shifted his hands to the side of his waist. A short bone knife appeared silently in his hands. But just then, the entire ground trembled once more.

Whoosh… A soft sound pierce through the torrential downpour. Then… the five despondent emissaries suddenly discovered to their surprise… that the formation array that had forcibly revealed their existence had just collapsed!

Just as abruptly as it had appeared, the formation array had suddenly transformed into roiling Yin energy that scattered into the night sky, quickly vanishing among the moon and the stars in the skies above.

Dead silence.

A deathly silence.

When the formation array first showed up abruptly, the sudden exigency it created instantly cast them into the mires of despair, and they were all prepared to die in that very moment that it had appeared. But none of them had expected the formation array to last for only ten seconds, far shorter than their previous estimates of fifteen seconds!

“This is…” Shinigami 437 trembled, before quickly screeching like a madman, “The underworld’s blessings! Go!!!”

Whoosh! His silhouette suddenly vanished into thin air. The dappled shadows on the ground scattered as the gloomy moonbeams shone through the clouds.

“Hahaha! The heavens are on my side!” “Lord Thanatos is watching over us! Hahahaha!” “Just you wait… The humiliation that we’ve suffered tonight shall be repaid with interest by an army of hundreds of millions in future!”

Zhou Xianlong was completely dumbfounded. He drew a deep breath and threw a punch into the air!

Rumble! This punch was even more terrifying than the earlier palmstrikes. The sky crackled with thunder, and the entire canopy of rain halted itself completely for a split second. Unfortunately, even as the powerful fiststrike flew through the air, the five extraterritorial emissaries had already vanished completely.

All that remained was a ruined funerary hall, a gathering of students who looked completely aghast, instructors, and the incessant rain that continued to pour from the skies above.

Then, just as the fiststrike was only a centimeter above the ground, the power backing the punch suddenly vanished, and the true energy scattered like a dense fog that routed to the surroundings in the blink of an eye. The clouds of true energy lingered softly in the funerary hall like a white mist.

Gone.

Zhou Xianlong gnashed his teeth.

They’re gone… Even though he couldn’t detect their presence, his intuition told him that they had already left the place.

Nobody said a single word. Then, several moments later, he gnashed his teeth and barked, “Seal all exits from the City of Salvation! Mobilize the army! Bring out all Yin measurement devices, and any other related devices and implements that can detect Yin energy! Activate our supernatural perimeter!!”

“Notify the SRC and the Special Investigations Department to render aid and assistance in investigation works! All who obstruct are to answer directly to me!”

“Turn on all surveillance facilities! All instructors and students are to report to the gym! No one is allowed to leave until we give the all clear!!”

“Yes!” The five professors cried out as they flew into action immediately.

With that, Zhou Xianlong’s figure vanished into the night sky, leaving the bewildered students to follow the lead of their equally astonished instructors towards the gym.

Nobody knew where the extraterritorial emissaries had gone.

Apart from Qin Ye.

Whoosh… Qin Ye was standing on the top of a building at the entrance to the First Academy of Cultivators when the formation array collapsed, and he opened his eyes instantly.

Black irises and white pupils. None could escape the watchful gaze of his infernal eyes.

Therefore, he saw exactly everything the remaining five extraterritorial emissaries did as they dashed straight out and away from the campus grounds.

They weren’t in their emissary states as they did this. Instead, they had probably employed their underworldly arts and transformed into shadows, slithering across the grounds like snacks as they covered a thousand meters in the blink of an eye.

Gu Qing’s soul had been trapped within the heart of a lantern. Qin Ye squinted his eyes as they dashed into the distance, “They haven’t decided who will get his soul, have they?”

“How could they possibly have the time to discuss such trivialities?” Arthis responded placidly, “But I can assure you that they won’t be able to calm their nerves until they get as far as Westriver. On another note… are you ready?”

As they spoke, the five shadows dashed away from the First Academy of Cultivators, and straight towards the closest borders to the City of Salvation. Qin Ye glanced back towards the heart of the city center, where a broken statue rose slowly from the ground, and a white light that was invisible to mere mortals swept across the entire city!

The supernatural perimeter had been fully deployed.

“Do you think I’ll be able to kill them?” He tapped his fingers on the damp ledge as he asked, “It would feel like a slap to the face if they managed to cross the border of the city…”

After all, he was the future Yanluo when all was said and done. How could he let his enemies come and go as they pleased on his territory? Wouldn’t that be tantamount to trampling all over his pride?

“No way.” Arthis responded coldly, “These are five Soul Hunters. Although they’re grievously wounded, they still possess complete Yin artifacts when all is said and done. You’re no match for them. But… as long as you can kill them, the amount of merit points you’ll gain would propel you straight into the ranks of an Anitya Hellguard! And when that time comes… I do happen to have some tricks up my sleeve to teach you some ancillary underworldly arts of Hell.”

“The core underworldly arts will still have to wait until the new Hell expands sufficiently to support the foundation of laws and regulations.”

The two of them walked and talked at a seemingly leisurely pace.

While the surviving extraterritorial emissaries were under the impression that they were already far from danger, the true hunt was only just beginning.

“So that’s how it is…” Qin Ye nodded his head, “Then… let’s begin.”

As soon as he gave the word, a terrifying Yin energy rushed straight through his seven apertures.

Strong… Unbelievably strong! It was almost akin to those days when he encountered Granny Meng and saw an entire being congealed from materialized Yin energy. And even though this source of Yin energy was taking control of his body, he didn’t resist its advances at all.

Five minutes passed... Ten minutes passed…. Then, when fifteen minutes passed, Qin Ye opened his eyes once more.

He still bore the same appearances, but his entire disposition had changed. With a soft grasping action, the demonhead saber flew into his hand. Then, he curled his thumb to his middle finger and flicked his finger gently as a smirk crept up the corner of his lips, “Don’t worry, none of you can think about leaving the City of Salvation tonight.”

“An instance of infraction, a life of requital. Tonight… I’ll show you how true Emissaries of Hell deal with you abominations.”

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