Chapter 399: Declaration of War (1)

Valley County.

Clouds were drifting about endlessly - almost sorrowfully.

The pit of a thousand hadn’t erupted just yet. In fact, the Yin energy bubbling within had almost vanished altogether, and the recent spate of supernatural outbreaks had already subsided! That said…

The Hellguard-class expert that had dove headlong into the pit had vanished completely!

It had been five days, and yet they’ve heard nothing from the Hellguard-class expert. Everyone was astonished when they first learnt of Qin Ye’s background through other sources, because… he was actually an expert from the First Academy of Cultivators!

Over the last few days, the First Academy of Cultivators would always call Valley County at 5.00 a.m. sharp, almost as though it was a routine call. However, County Governor Su Defang would always fidget and hesitate, wondering if he should pick up the call or not. After all, he was most reluctant to respond to these calls with a simple “no news” update. Even his heart trembled whenever he uttered these words.

“... Yes, we understand. We will definitely mobilize all the resources available to search for his whereabouts. Rest assured…” Su Defang hung up the phone and wiped off the cold sweat that was beading up on his forehead. Then, he promptly turned to Chen Nian and Zeng Shuai, “Are there any updates? It’s no longer just the First Academy of Cultivators now… even Cloudrise City is calling to check on us. We’ll have nothing to report back with if we don’t locate Mr Qin soon!”

There was no resentment or hatred on their part.

Qin Ye had vanished, while the pit of a thousand had completely quietened down. Everyone had guessed that Qin Ye might well have sacrificed himself in order to dismantle the pit of a thousand altogether. However, none of them dared to report back as such, because they needed something to show for it. But as the days wore on, so did their hopes slowly diminish. Yet, despite the infinitesimally slim chances of locating his whereabouts, they knew that they had to forge on with the search.

It was a cloudy day today.

Leaden overcast clouds rolled along the canopy of the skies, while the afterglow of the setting sun peeked out from beneath. Su Defang glanced soullessly at the darkening skies over Valley County as he murmured to himself, “Mr Qin… where in the world are you…”

“Hmm?” Just then, Zeng Shuai and Chen Nian both looked up at the same time and at the exact same location. And they weren’t the only ones. In fact, all of the cultivators in the county looked up in unison and turned their gaze to a particular location in the skies.

The Yin spirits… are stirring?

Yin spirits don’t generally manifest themselves actively, and most cultivators weren’t able to see wandering spirits either. However, they were all fully aware that the mortal realm was filled with countless wandering spirits, and their presence could be sensed and perceived through the density of Yin energy in the air around. And right now, they could all sense that the Yin energy in Valley County… appeared to be trembling.

“This isn’t agitation as well… Instead, it looks to be borne out of… fear?” Chen Nian remarked aloud, and then turned to look at the time. It was nearly 6.00 p.m.

That was when the public announcements about the supernatural warnings were broadcasted to the citizens.

“But what are they afraid of?” Zeng Shuai glanced around intently, “Overwhelming fear has caused all of the Yin energy to start drifting about in Valley County. There must be something stirring within Valley County right now - something that can cause all of the Yin spirits to feel fear in their bones!”

Anyone who possessed the ability to see Yin spirits would have noticed that the Yin spirits on the road leading to the county’s television station were all screaming at the top of the voices as they scattered about wildly. There were even some who were completely seized up by the overwhelming fear that consumed their senses, and they found themselves collapsing to the ground with great trembling as they pleaded for mercy.

Just like that, the entire road spanning several hundred meters was filled with kneeling Yin spirits who were begging for their lives. Everyone else had already fled the scene for their dear lives.

This was because they could see two terrifying people.

Two beings whose existences weren’t perceptible to normal human beings.

They were dressed in black robes replete with a conical bamboo hat, and they had a terrifying white mask that concealed their appearances. Their feet were hovering an inch off the surface of the ground, while their hands were clasped together and hidden underneath their long sleeves. A ferocious nethergale swept around them wherever they passed. But, unlike the green coloured Yin energy of the mortal realm, the Yin energy pouring out from their bodies were of the purest, deepest black. Even the trees on the side of the road couldn’t help but clatter in fear.

It was still springtime, so the skies darkened early, and the streetlights were already switched on by now. However, with every step that they took, the streetlights around them would fizzle and snap off!

This was a clear indication of an evil ghost making a dawn voyage!

“Holy crap…” Valley City High School was in the vicinity. The students who were just dismissed from school were immediately greeted with a spine-chilling sight that caused their hair to stand on end. The streetlights flickered out, while the surrounding trees rustled peculiarly, almost as though they were bowing down to a greater being that was located in the center of the road. However, the students promptly jolted back to their senses. Screaming and squealing at the top of their voices, they hopped onto their bikes and pedalled home as quickly as their legs would take them.

The witching hour was coming soon.

Everyone could sense that… something terrifying was going to happen tonight.

Even the rickshaws, motorcycles, and other vehicles on the road immediately paused to stare at the peculiar sight, before desperately zooming off to the closest shelter where they would spend the rest of the night.

Valley County Television Station was located right at the end of the road. Incidentally, the radio hall where the daily public announcements were broadcasted from was also located adjacent to the television station. The soldiers standing guard at the gate to these buildings could see the streetlights flickering out right in front of the television station, and the trees swaying wildly despite the lack of wind. They exchanged a knowing glance, and then immediately pointed their guns right towards the main road without any hesitation!

The road was completely empty, and yet… there was a palpable sense of fear that caused goosebumps to creep up all over their skin.

“Immediately report back to the company commander…” A sergeant stared intently at the desolate road as his heart thumped wildly. The fear of the unknown was the most terrifying kind of fear.

“Television station requests support…” He spoke with a quiver in his voice. However, the recruits pointing the guns at the empty road ahead responded with a drifty voice, “But… there doesn’t seem to be anything over there…”

The sergeant immediately snapped back in fury, “It’ll be too late once we see them! Get going!!”

Little did they know that the two black-robed men were already at the bottom of the stairs of the television building right now. Their clothes fluttered about wildly as they watched the somewhat amusing sight play out before their eyes.

“Are you ready?” Qin Ye spoke softly.

However, Wang Chenghao responded with some measure of bitterness, “Technically, I am… but… did you really have to go so far and be so shameless?”

“Don’t worry.” Qin Ye’s responded placidly, “We’re wearing masks. Besides, how can there be no ceremony when the King Yanluo of Hell is about to make his grand debut in the mortal realm?”

“But it’s still terribly embarrassing!! Do you even know what face means?!” Wang Chenghao was practically hissing back at Qin Ye, “How about this - I’ll just hand you the phone! Take it!”

Qin Ye stared at Wang Chenghao as though he had just seen a ghost, “What bullshit are you spewing? Are you suggesting that I’m being shameless over here?”

“What the heck…”

“Besides, that’s not the point! What time is it now?” Qin Ye was like a well-oiled machine when it came to interrupting at the most opportune timing.

Wang Chenghao drew a deep breath. Endure… endure it all… Just like how Brother Qin continues to put up with Arthis… Seconds later, he pulled out the phone with a sickly expression on his face, “5.30 p.m….”

“Good.” Qin Ye responded in English, “It’s SHOW TIME~!”

Wang Chenghao followed closely behind with resignation.

With a snap of his finger, Qin Ye suddenly appeared right in front of the broadcasting building. All of the cultivators and guards around immediately gasped in horror.

BOOM!

But before they could even respond, a terrifying cloud of Yin energy immediately engulfed the entire Valley County!

Rumble… The sky instantly darkened. This was the first time Qin Ye was revealing his true form within the mortal realm. Judge-class Yin energy rippled through the air like massive waves. Two spots of golden netherflames abruptly lit up from beneath the morbid mask, instantly petrifying the countless warriors around, “Do not be afraid. I am not an evil ghost.”

Just then, the series of sensors detecting paranormal activity blared in unison. The entire county government, and all of the garrisoned troops immediately turned to the instruments around them that were beeping wildly, “Judge-class Yin energy detected at the television station. Total amount of energy is estimated to be above four million Yin. All personnel are to be prepared for battle. I repeat… Judge-class Yin energy…”

Dead silence.

Everyone grew taciturn immediately. Two seconds later, Su Defang jerked to his feet, “Mr Chen, Mr Zeng, rally our defenses immediately! Summon your troops and head out right now! Hurry!!”

The two men immediately rushed out of the room with bloodshot eyes and wild palpitations in their hearts.

Judge… Judge-class Yin energy… It’s not true energy!

Does this mean that a Judge-class evil ghost has appeared? How could this be? Why Valley County of all places?

Their minds were still buzzing with questions when they arrived at the barracks. That said, there was no need for them to summon the troops, because… as soon as they arrived, a convoy of over a dozen military vehicles were just on the way out. The special forces garrisoned here had already armed themselves with Yin-piercing ammunition, and were already rushing to provide support at the television station.

Back in the county hall. Having entrusted the county’s defenses to the other two men, he immediately picked up his cellphone, “Old Xu, immediately mobilize all police forces to appease and assure the people! Arrange lodging for those who haven’t managed to return home as yet! Then, I want you to disseminate orders that nobody is to step out of their households or neighbourhoods until further notice! Everyone is to be prepared to evacuate at the moment’s notice!!”

Then, before the other party could even respond with any form of verbal acknowledgment, he swiftly hung up and dialed another number, “Secretary Wang… You’re aware of the situation? Great. Please request emergency support from Cloudrise City! What? You’ve already done that? Perfect…”

He promptly hung up. Just then, the door to his room swung wide open, and an otherwise usually steady secretary rushed into the room with sweat beading up all over his forehead as he yelled at the top of his voice, “Governor Su! Run--... run away now!!”

However, Su Defang remained right where he was.

The national flag hung right behind him in his office. He sat down and poured himself a cup of tea. His fingers were ostensibly trembling, but he continued to stare intently at his secretary, “You’re hereby dismissed from your duties.”

“Huh?” The secretary froze in shock.

“Are you even aware of the implications of what you’re suggesting right now? How can a leader flee from the county?! What about the hundreds of thousands of citizens who are still residing here?!!” Su Defang abruptly shot to his feet and threw his ashtray at the secretary, “Do you know why Cathay hasn’t collapsed yet? It’s because none of the leaders are willing to give up on their people! Secretary Cheng, I’m disappointed in you! Assistant Gao!!”

A man outside immediately answered the call and entered the room. Su Defang’s chest was rising and falling with his ragged breaths, “Get rid of this riffraff for me! Our county government has no room for such trash!!! Public servants are meant to serve the people, not to entitle us to the privilege of information so that we can escape first!”

The man nodded, but promptly added, “But… wasn’t Secretary Wang just carrying out his duties…”

“Don’t worry. I can assure you he knew the implications of what he was suggesting.” Su Defang snorted coldly. His emotions had finally calmed down once more, “Prepare the car, and summon all departmental heads to the television station right away! All who don’t show up shall be summarily dismissed!!”

Qin Ye was unaware of what exactly transpired. That said, given that this was the first time that Hell was emerging from the shadows in the mortal realm, he naturally expected his appearance to make waves among the mortal leaders. However, he couldn’t care less about these things for the moment. He glanced placidly about the row of mortal soldiers standing like a wall in front of him, before raising his hand slowly. Clack! He snapped his finger, and everyone’s knees promptly buckled, and they collapsed to the ground.

“Their knees are obviously shaking, so why are they putting up such a fierce resistance?” Qin Ye sighed, “Humans… The power of faith is truly commendable. It’s precisely because of this that they’re able to stand tall under the oppression of the three daolords to this day. One Tail… Eh?! Why aren’t you revealing your true form as planned?”

“Apologies… it’s embarrassing beyond belief… Notwithstanding the mask that is already concealing my appearance, I can still feel my cheeks burning underneath…” Wang One Tail responded softly. A split second later, the main entrance to the television station burst open, only to reveal the fact that the lobby was in a great mess. Anyone could tell that all who were working within had scrambled to find a hiding place, and the documents that they were carrying were now scattered all over the place.

As soon as they made their way into the television station, a thumping bass immediately resounded, followed quickly by a rousing background music. Wang Chenghao gritted his teeth, pulled out his backpack, and began to scatter paper money around into their surroundings.

Prrr… Prr prr prr prr prr, prr prr prr… Prr prr prr… As soon as the familiar melody started playing, Qin Ye immediately rose up from the sea of billowing Yin energy, ascending straight into the second floor under the fluttering confetti of paper money.

“This is… the soundtrack for Kill Bill, Battle Without Honor or Humanity” The people hiding in the rooms within the television station had earlier had their hearts at their throats. But now, their tense spirits promptly subsided, while their eyes widened intently.

I mean… isn’t this supposed to be an incarnate revenant or something? What the hell are they playing Battle Without Honor or Humanity for?!

A theme song specially selected for his appearance? I didn’t know that Yin spirits play with such high stakes too!

Previous Chapter Next Chapter