He couldn’t wait to read on. The introduction made him draw a deep breath.
“The Dusk Legionnaire was King Yanluo’s imperial guard.”
“They’re an evolved form of the Yoke of Five Ghosts. Strictly speaking, it’s not a technique, but an army that is strictly under the command of King Yanluo himself. Alternatively, one could consider it a ceremonial force that numbers as few as a hundred, and as many as ten thousand.”
“Yoke of Five Ghosts… Yoke of Ten Ghosts… Yoke of A Hundred Ghosts… Yoke of A Thousand Ghosts… Yoke of Ten Thousand Ghosts. The formation of the Dusk Legionnaire, otherwise known as the Dusk Voyage of Ten Thousand Ghosts, would be completed at the final stage of the Yoke of Ten Thousand Ghosts. The Dusk Legionnaire would escort King Yanluo wherever he goes. Everything, including the exact number of ghosts involved, is dependent on the amount of Yin energy at the user’s disposal. The ghosts that follow are also known as escort spirits, and their strength increases together with their user’s strength.”
What amazing stuff!
A smile began to creep up the corners of Qin Ye’s lips. Bloody hell… would I even need to lift a single finger to purge ghosts in future? Who knew that the office of King Yanluo came with such incredible benefits? I’d simply point a finger, and ten thousand ghosts would rush straight to my target until it completely eradicates all traces of it.
How awesome is that?
To think that he still had to bash the heads of each Yin spirit in with his spirit streamer right now. How weak was that?
He read on eagerly.
“The Dusk Legionnaire requires the conclusive concentric seal, the requirements of which are as follows... and finally, conclude with a ghost knot seal. Note that the strength of the Dusk Legionnaire may vary, but it is important to ensure that every legionnaire appointed must possess a cultivation that is below the user. Otherwise, as soon as the user is unable to keep them in check, there would be a backlash of legionnaires, and the soul of the user would be utterly destroyed.”
So desu ne… In other words, I can already bring ten thousand Soul Hunters under my charge right now? Ah… no, no, no… it’s going to be ten thousand Hellguards in no time! I’ll have Arthis help me with my breakthrough once I’m out of Insignia Province! Speaking of which, why hasn’t Arthis told me about something as awesome as this before?
He continued reading through the rest of the text until he finally internalized everything.
“This technique is only for the eyes of King Yanluo or any successors to that title. It’s got nothing to do with the Heavenly Dao, and can be freely used without any preconditions on Hell’s development. The only restriction is that only King Yanluo or any successors to that title are allowed to use it.”
His interest in the rest of the old Hell’s legacy immediately soared.
Annals of Hell. At first blush, the name seemed to suggest that the only things recorded are the stages of Hell’s development, together with its customs and its people.
Who could have thought that it would actually document something as amazing as the techniques of the King Yanluo of Hell? Then… what else could possibly be contained in the rest of the old Hell’s legacy?
Would there be similarly terrifying and domineering arts?
With this in hand, what would Liu Yu even count for? I could stand against ten thousand all on my own!
“Predatory zone… That’s right! Predatory zones!” He fervently repressed the burgeoning glee in his heart and shut his eyes to carefully contemplate the implications of what he had just learnt.
Firstly, the deeper their grievance, the more dangerous the Yin spirit after death. Such Yin spirits are generally more terrifying than ordinary Yin spirits. Obviously, my Dusk Legionnaire can probably support no more than ten ghosts right now. So, if I were to pick my Yin spirits, I’d have to be circumspect and pick the most dangerous kinds - those who have been the worst of murderers before their death, or those who have committed the most heinous of crimes!
Otherwise, how am I supposed to address them in future? ‘You, petty thief, act as vanguard; You, robber, act as support; and you, rapist, take the left flank…’ Bloody hell… that image is horrific!
But if my Yin spirits were better at that… ‘Beautiful Teresa, Serious Fist Baldy, X-man Cyclops, and Sannin Orochimaru…’
It’s already sounding loads better than the previous batch of names! Hehehe… I can’t wait to get my hands on some good spirits right now…
The lady sitting in the opposite booth glared disdainfully at Qin Ye’s perverse expressions, shifting away subconsciously before muttering under her breath to her boyfriend. Her boyfriend promptly looked up at Qin Ye with an equally disgusted look.
“Due to the presence of the First Academy of Cultivators, Insignia Province shouldn’t have too many predatory zones. Since that’s the case… leaving the academy was undoubtedly the best decision I’ve made!” He smacked the table and gazed out of the windows and into the distance.
Then… since we’re travelling towards Martial City, the predatory zones along the way are…
Kekeke… I’ll apologize in advance… As long as you’re of the same cultivation level as me, I’m going to be coming hard for you!
Fear and cowardice? Not by my books!
Qin Ye licked his lips and fervently suppressed the raging fire in his heart. He couldn’t wait for the train to finally pull into the next stop.
Just like that, Qin Ye remained silent for the rest of the journey, until the train finally pulled into the next station.
“Attention, all passengers. Attention, all passengers.” Just then, the train came to a complete halt, and an announcement was broadcasted to the passengers, “Due to unforeseen circumstances in Rivershade City, all passengers who were to alight at Rivershade City are to alight in Valley County instead. Please note the following words of caution.”
“The time now is 11.07 p.m. We are currently stopped at Valley County Station. For your own safety, kindly refrain from entering places with many mirrors or reflective surfaces. Do not enter the washroom alone. Do not stray too far from the train to make purchases at this station. Passengers who alight at this station are reminded not to wander out from the train station. There is a hotel right next to the train station which provides food and lodging to those who need it, especially passengers who are departing after 6.00 a.m. tomorrow. We repeat. Attention, all passengers…”
Have we arrived?
Qin Ye raised his eyebrows. Rivershade City… has met with unforeseen circumstances? We’re supposed to get off at Valley County instead?
He glanced around his surroundings. Everything appeared well lit, reminiscent of a fairly prosperous county. The train station wasn’t large, but it was brightly illuminated and built in the style of a typical county train station.
The style was somewhat dated, ostensibly built in the style of the 90’s. The interior was clean, but it also had its fair share of mottled walls and crooked signboards, with traces of brooms, pipes and other work tools shelved in the corners of the station. Not a single person could be seen on the platform right now.
That said, it was hardly surprising. It was already close to midnight. Given the supernatural situations that plagued Cathay, it was only to be expected that everyone was already hiding in the safety of their homes.
Qin Ye picked up his bag and made his way towards the door, to the great horror of the couple in the next booth.
“Wait a minute…” The young man suddenly asked as he arrived by the door to the car, “Bro-brother… w-where are you going?”
“I’m alighting, can’t I?” Qin Ye glanced at the couple with great bewilderment - What’s wrong with getting off at the station?
Just then, the young lady screamed at the top of her voice and promptly retreated into the corner of her seat. Even the man gasped in horror and trembled as he stood up and stared at Qin Ye.
“What the hell is going on?” Qin Ye frowned at the couple, only to realize that they weren’t the only ones who were reacting this way. In fact, everyone in the same car appeared to be staring at him as though they had just seen a ghost.
“I…” Qin Ye shifted his feet, and the people in the car immediately screamed in response. The forehead of a middle-aged lady glistened with cold sweat as she shrunk back in fear. She stared apprehensively at Qin Ye and spoke with a trembling voice, “Y-y-you… stay back!!”
Just then, Qin Ye heard a shuffle of footsteps. Several train attendants were approaching them.
“What’s going on?” The leader was a tall man with a squarish face. He carried himself with some air of dignity. He scanned around the carriage, before finally turning to Qin Ye. Having witnessed the shock and horror of the other passengers around, he seemed to understand the situation, “Are you getting off?”
“That’s right.” Qin Ye was getting increasingly puzzled, “Didn’t you just broadcast an announcement, saying that all who are heading towards Rivershade City are to alight at Valley County?”
“Please produce your identification and train ticket.”
“Bloody hell… are you mistaken about something…”
“Please produce your identification and train ticket!” The square-faced man raised his voice. It was only at this moment that Qin Ye finally discovered that the other train attendants had finally begun to gather around him.
What the hell is it…
Qin Ye sighed helplessly. He didn’t have any identification documents with him. Everything in his possession had already been handed over to the Special Investigations Department, and the only thing he could produce to prove his identification was his Special Investigations Department ID card, which he promptly handed over.
It was a red booklet. As soon as the man noticed it, his eyes immediately brightened. He had been a train attendant for a long time now, so he knew full well the standing instruction that anyone who produced these documentations were to be allowed disembarkation at any part of the journey.
After flipping through Qin Ye’s identification, the man handed it back to him and gazed deeply into Qin Ye’s eyes, “We’ll be stopping here for half an hour.”
Qin Ye blinked back at him, but remained completely silent.
“Come, after you.” The man walked to the door and nodded to another attendant. The attendant opened the carriage door stiffly. When Qin Ye walked past the attendant, he raised his eyebrows slightly at the man, but remained completely silent.
Then, as soon as he got off, he was immediately assaulted with a frigid, marrow-chilling gale. He immediately wrapped himself tightly with his outer coat. But as soon as he looked up, the sight he was greeted by immediately caused his adrenaline to soar!
There was no station here to begin with!
No… it wasn’t that there wasn’t a station. The platform was there, but… it looked completely different from what he had seen from back in the train carriage. What he had seen earlier was a train station that appeared to have been built in the 90’s, but what he saw right now… was a complete wreck!
There were still some county lights that were lit in the distance, but the entire station was completely devoid of any lights altogether. The only source of lights were some flickering lights that appeared to be on the verge of decommission. The dim light and the dilapidated platform immediately made Qin Ye feel as though he was standing right in front of a graveyard.
Whoosh… The night wind appeared to be blowing more strongly than ever. The overgrown foliage in the vicinity rustled menacingly, almost as though there were a thousand ghosts hiding in the shadows, whimpering and crying. The wreckage of the station was vandalized with a massive ‘SLAY’ word that was splashed across the entire walls with striking red lettering. Where were the brooms, water pipes, or tools that he had seen earlier? The only thing that remained were a thick layer of leaves that were scattered all about the dilapidated platform. It was clear as day that this platform had been disused since eons ago. It was eerie and abandoned!
Any ordinary person in his shoes would have been so startled by the sight that they would already have broken down in tears right now. Just then, a hand landed on his shoulder.
Qin Ye didn’t even turn around, “You’ve disembarked as well?”
The square-faced man walked to his side, and sighed, “Let me tell you a story.”
Qin Ye smiled as the man walked ahead of him slowly. Qin Ye followed after him, and the man promptly began, “There used to be stations like Valley County in the past…”
“This station had existed since the wars against the Nipponese. It’s very worn out.” He walked ahead with a slight limp, and his voice was slightly hoarse, “I’ve heard that the Nipponese army used to run a silk factory here in order to… cough… supply… the Nipponese troops with military uniforms. But that’s decades ago.”
“The silk factory had over a thousand workers, but… cough, cough, cough, cough, cough!!” The man coughed violently. He didn’t appear to be walking quickly, but if Qin Ye had just turned back slightly, he would have realized that… they had already wandered dozens of meters from the train platform!
The lights in the surroundings had already dimmed substantially, and they appeared to be on the verge of entering the land of darkness. The low shrubs and tall trees in the vicinity swayed like terrifying demons, while the hazy lights from the distance casted a dappled shadow over them, almost as though there were evil ghosts dancing in the night, eagerly awaiting their chance to pounce and devour their next prey.
“Are you alright?” Qin Ye lowered his eyes to the ground and asked softly.
“I’m fine… don’t worry… cough, cough, cough, cough, cough!” The man continued walking forward, “Legend has it that… even at the time of liberation, nobody knew where the workers of this silk factory had ended up. Naturally… cough, cough, cough… this is all only the stuff of legends. But, then again… that’s just how people are... they need an answer to everything…”
They had already gone around the disused station by now, and there was obviously a fence in front of their eye, replete with a thick iron gate in the distance. The iron gate was bolted up with chains, and the chains clattered as the talismans on them fluttered wildly with the wind.
As it turned out, what was situated behind the disused platform was actually… a mass grave!
The man began to emit a strange, gurgling sound from his throat, while the gulping of his saliva between words became more and more apparent, “Originally… Valley County used to be a peaceful place… gulp… sss… But, just three years ago, for some strange reason, every train that passed by this location would broadcast the very same announcement… gulp…”
It was almost as though his jaw had ruptured, and saliva poured forth like the floodgates were open. Qin Ye turned back to look at the man’s path of travel thus far.
There was blood.
It only started out with a few drops. But then… it soon increased, until it appeared no different from a stream of blood pouring down like water.
Furthermore… the man’s feet… were no longer touching the ground.
A disused train platform in the middle of the night. Dim lights, mottled shadows and a mass grave in front of them. The shadows of horror were looming right over Qin Ye’s head at this very moment!