SSSS!!! A mournful scream tore through Limbo’s void, sending wild fluctuations rippling through the drifting mist. The sea of paramnesia flowers were bending back as a result of the terrifying scream, and even Arthis and Qin Ye’s robes were fluttering about wildly. Qin Ye’s gaze flickered as he looked up to the source of the sound.
“This is…” Qin Ye’s expressions grew sullen, “An Infernal Judge?”
“A Judge-class Yin beast.” Arthis licked her lips, “Like I said before, Limbo is filled with living creatures. It’s only natural to see a Yin beast around these parts. And don’t even think about taming them for your own use. They feed on Yin spirits. If you bring it to Hell, I can assure you that your entire population of a hundred thousand Yin spirits wouldn’t last for more than three years.”
Qin Ye stared at the figure that was still trudging through the mist, “What gives it the guts to even draw close to the Harken?”
“Didn’t Lord Ksitigarbha tell you?” Arthis snickered, “The Yin Beast Bell… is an artifact that we call a cat’s toy bell. However, it makes sounds that are practically irresistible to all Yin beasts. In other words, the sound it makes is practically akin to the sound of destiny’s call. Different Yin beasts might perceive it differently - perhaps the call of a nemesis, or perhaps even the call of a… mating partner. The Harken is so weak right now that it’s not even able to display its aura. It’s only natural that monarch beasts would dare to approach the Harken right now.”
Boom! The ground trembled once more. The colossal beast appeared no different from a fortress that was slowly emerging from the veil of the mist. Slowly, it approached Qin Ye.
Nobody said a single word. This was merely a Judge-class Yin beast. Qin Ye was confident that he could easily defeat the beast in an instant. The only thing he wanted to do right now was to see what a legendary monarch Yin beasts looked like.
Dong… dong, dong… Dull footsteps reverberated through Limbo like heavy drum beats. Each step on the ground sent tremors rippling through the earth, almost as though they were experiencing repeated earthquakes of 5.0 magnitude on the Richter scale. It drew closer and closer… and the hazy silhouette slowly grew clearer and clearer. A minute later, a pair of jade-green netherflames lit up from within the darkness.
It would be more accurate to describe them as two spots of blazing conflagrations, because each clump of terrifying netherflame appeared to be at least ten meters wide! With a great roar, the behemoth erupted with a powerful wave of Yin energy and appeared right before Arthis and Qin Ye.
It… appeared to be a man.
However, he was walking on all fours like how a mammoth would. In fact, its body was practically shaped like a mammoth’s, but its limbs appeared to be replaced by human hands. Moreover, the Yin beast bore the head of a smiling old man, replete with a bald head and two sets of long, white sideburns that draped down alongside its head. Each of the sideburns were hundreds of meters long, and they hung loosely around its body.
The smile on its face was even more peculiar, almost as though it was completely frozen and locked in place. Rows of sharp teeth could be seen in the gap between its lips, while two massive tusks hundreds of meters long protruded from its mouth just like that of an ancient mammoth!
It was incredibly bizarre.
Arthis turned to Qin Ye placidly, “Elder Soul Devourer. A carnivorous Yin beast that devours souls for food. It’s incredibly ferocious, and equally bloodthirsty. Shall I? Or will you do the honours?”
ROOAAAARRRR!!! Just then, the Elder Soul Devourer suddenly opened its mouth and bellowed at the two seemingly insignificant existences in Limbo.
Instantly, the area was swept clear of all lingering Yin mist. A scarlet forked tongue tens of meters long flailed about and licked its lips as the Soul Devourer stared intently at Qin Ye.
To be more precise, it was staring at the Yin Beast Bell in Qin Ye’s hand.
Qin Ye looked startled, “Can’t it sense the aura of an Infernal Judge from us? What gives it the guts to act this way?”
“You overestimate them. Yin beasts move only on instinct. Where are they supposed to get the spiritual awareness to be conscious of all these things?” Arthis snorted softly. But before they could even finish their exchange with each other, a flicker of red lightning suddenly bolted across the sky!
Qin Ye reflexively waved his hand, and the Book of Life and Death instantly grew in size, transforming into a wall that obstructed the path of the bolt of red lightning.
It was the tongue.
The forked tongue of the Elder Soul Devourer.
The Elder Soul Devourer still had the same, peculiar smile on its face. A split second later, and with a great hiss, a dozen or so other tongues suddenly emerged from its lips and slammed directly against the wall formed by the book.
Qin Ye was just pulling out his Judgment Pen when suddenly, all of the slithering tongues seized up in mid-air.
It was almost as thought time had frozen. The Elder Soul Devourer froze in place. Its huge body twisted slightly, and then the expression on his face finally changed from the same placid smile to an expression of intense, frenzied rage.
Sss… ROAR!! It roared furiously, but its entire body appeared to be helplessly caught by something. A split second later, with an ear-splitting shriek, its entire being slammed sideways into the ground, where it was quickly dragged off into the distance!
It clearly wasn’t a series of movements made of its own volition.
In fact, Qin Ye could see that it was flailing its limbs about as it struggled desperately against the external force. However, it was almost as though there were an even more tyrannical giant snake dragging it off to the side. No matter how much it struggled, everything appeared to be in vain.
Sss… SSSS!!! Its cries were immediately filled with panic. It clawed desperately against the ground with its pale white hands, digging up deep, long grooves in Limbo and unearthing the beds of flowers of paramnesia. Unfortunately… its efforts were clearly useless against the indomitable force overpowering it!
“This is…” Qin Ye gasped deeply. What the hell is going on? What could there be lurking in the dark that can possibly render the Elder Soul Devourer completely helpless?
Just then, there was an abrupt quake that shook the entire Limbo. Three seconds later, a black hole visible to the naked eye formed right above the Harken, where it slowly but surely began to consume everything around it - flowers of paramnesia, Yin energy, Elder Soul Devourer, and so on. Everything… save for Qin Ye and Arthis.
Whoosh!!! The suction force from the black hole was so terrifying that it soon transformed into a massive tornado as they slowly consumed everything around it! Even the Elder Soul Devourer couldn’t do a single thing against the terrifying might of the black hole, and it was likewise tossed about in the raging tornado as though it were made with paper mache.
Ten seconds later, everything subsided. The surroundings were silent once more.
Countless flowers of paramnesia which had earlier been sent scattering through the skies were slowly drifting down like a rain of petals. The Harken was still motionless, while the Elder Soul Devourer had vanished completely.
That said… Qin Ye and Arthis could both tell that the terrifying wound on the Harken’s back had healed by a trace amount!
None of them said a single word. Qin Ye silently wiped off the sweat on the forehead. The Harken… must have been feeding earlier.
Despite its state of comatose, it… was still at the apex of all Yin beasts! It eats when it so desires! Nothing can stand in its way!
That’s insane… What transpired earlier ruffled Qin Ye’s feathers even more than the Harken’s earlier altercation with Arthis some time ago. An entire Infernal Judge had been completely reduced to nothingness… Qin Ye shifted his weight to the balls of his feet uneasily, ready to make his great escape at a moment’s notice.
Unfortunately, as soon as Qin Ye began to slowly shuffle away, a clump of hair wrapped itself tightly around his waist and dragged him back to his original spot., “Hang on right there.”
“Shh…” Qin Ye glared back at Arthis and made a shushing gesture, “Keep it down! It wouldn’t be good to awaken Lord Harken from its beauty sleep! Can you please conduct yourself with some measure of propriety here?”
Aaarrrgghh… Calm down, calm down… You’re used to it… It’s important to keep the peace in your heart… With a placid expression on her face, she responded, “Do no other thoughts occur to you at this point in time?”
Qin Ye blinked back vacantly, before turning to the Harken and bowing deeply to it, “Pardon the interruption. We’ll take our leave right now.”
With that, he began to drift away once more.
Shk, shk, shk! This time, countless clumps of hair immediately wrapped around him like bondage play. Arthis leaned in closer. Her face was already completely twisted with the tumultuous emotions that were raging in her heart, “Did you forget why we’re here in the first place?! Universal Grand Shift!!! That’s our true purpose! Can you please grow a brain for once?!”
Ah. That’s right. There’s still that…
“I mean… weren’t you the one who told me to stop it in the first place? Why are we still wasting our time and effort over here--... I get it! You’re trying to trip me up and get me killed over here, aren’t you? Nuh-uh-uh, there’s no need to explain anything. The more you explain, the more guilty you appear! I’ve hit the nail on the head, haven’t I? The truth has just been revealed!” Qin Ye barked back with a verbal diarrhoea of allegations.
“You--... I--...” Arthis’ heart was swelling with mounting rage. Is it against the law to kill the King Yanluo of Hell? C’mon, I really need to know right now!
Arhtis shut her eyes and summarily dispelled all of the other distracting thoughts clouding her mind. Then, she turned back to the issue and hand and gnashed her teeth softly, “I’ve just recalled how Lord Ksitigarbha used to play with his cat--... I mean, the Harken. Turn the Yin Beast Bell around, and see if there’s some wool stuck up the bell to dampen its call?”
Qin Ye flipped it over, and was astonished to find that there was indeed a clump of wool hidden within!
“The Yin Beast Bell can potentially overstimulate the Harken into a state of great excitement. Thus, in order to prevent that from happening, Lord Ksitigarbha has modified the bell in order to dampen the effects of its chime.” Arthis explained, “To that end, it is said that Lord Ksitigarbha has opened a small chamber within the bell and stashed it with some divine objects. Word has it that it’s only when these divine objects are used in tandem with the bell would one truly be able to excite Lord Harken completely.”
So desu-ne… Qin Ye ripped off the cotton wool within the bell in a few swift strokes, and then finally drew another deep breath, “I’m starting.”
Arthis nodded, and then sensibly moved back several steps.
Qin Ye shook the Yin Beast Bell gently, but the sound it emitted was far more crisp and resonant. Qin Ye could even feel his bones vibrating to the natural resonance of the bell. This time, the golden ripples of sound waves flowed much more smoothly and majestically, almost like the surge of a tsunami that spread out in all directions. The fog of Yin energy in the surroundings was immediately swept away.
As the bell rang, wisps of green silken threads began to slowly drift out from its core and fill the surroundings. Initially, it appeared fine and misty like a refreshing spring drizzle. But within five seconds, the threads promptly enlarged in size, turning into a rain of feather-like objects that slowly drifted down like snow, falling softly onto Lord Harken’s colossal body.
What a familiar smell… Qin Ye thought as he continued to shake the bell. He blinked vacantly for a moment, before suddenly being struck by a brainwave. He immediately grabbed a handful of the green silken object and took a whiff of it, before barking at the top of his voice, “Holy shit!! Isn’t this catnip?!!”
“You know about it?” Arthis stared at Qin Ye as though she had just seen a ghost, “You… actually know about Lord Ksitigarbha’s divine object?”
Qin Ye couldn’t even be bothered with Arthis at this point in time. He stared at the Harken with great disbelief - This can’t be real… I must be dreaming right now… How in the world are you the same as a cat?! Where is the resemblance? No matter how I see it, you’re nothing like a cat at all! Why would you be excited about catnip?!
It had to be said that the usually dark and gloomy Limbo was suddenly filled with a dazzling display of what appeared to be special effects. And then, to Qin Ye’s great surprise, the Harken… actually opened his massive eyes!
I’ll be damned… it… really works…
Qin Ye was completely lost for words. He didn’t know where to begin, so he sensibly kept his mouth completely shut.
Just like that, a massive beast, an evil ghost, and a frail human locked eyes with each other. With the Harken’s awakening, the Yin energy in the surroundings immediately began to stir tremble like boiling water. The cries of Yin beasts echoed out in the distance, before slowly but surely fading away into the background as though they were fleeing for their lives.
Whoosh… A sea of Yin energy surged from the ground like a vast ripple. Nobody said a single word. Arthis and Qin Ye were tense to the extreme. Without a word to each other, they had both tacitly begun to operate the Yin energy within their body so that they could escape at the earliest sign of trouble.
The tense silence went on for half a minute. And then, the Harken blinked its eyes, and then opened its jaws wide, “Meow~~~”
What the hell?!!
Aaarrrggghhh… Is it really responding to the catnip like any other cat out there would? I’d never thought that catnips could be used like that as well… didn’t it use to hiss and roar at us? This… I still can’t believe this… How has the all-knowing and all-powerful Lord Harken been reduced to a mere house cat…
But little did he know that this was only just the beginning…
The Harken didn’t even look them in the eyes. It promptly squinted its eyes, almost as though it were enjoying the shower of catnips over his body. Then… three minutes later… it actually began to roll about the ground with its colossal body!
Its tail even shot into the sky and began to wag about like a happy cat!
“Meow~~~ Meow~~~” Its cheerful meows reverberated throughout the depths of Limbo. The entire ground was trembling like a cataclysmic earthquake from the Harken’s playful rolling on the ground. Completely disarmed, Qin Ye gazed up silently into the distant sky, wondering whether he had dialed the wrong number with the Yin Beast Bell...Previous Chapter Next Chapter