Chapter 413: Uncharted Territories (3)

Boom, boom, boom… Yang Yanzhao led the Yin army’s march, skirting around the basin completely as they rushed towards the first Beacon of Light as quickly as they could.

This was the benefit of having Beacons of Light. The underworld was a vast and boundless place. Without any landmarks or guiding lights, an army might in its anxiety to avoid a monarch beast unwittingly step into an even more dangerous territory. But with the Beacons of Light set properly in place, everyone would now have a glimmer of light to fix their eyes upon. Even if a Yin soldier ended up getting separated from the main army, they would still take heart in the fact that they could still rendezvous at the very next location.

I wonder how Lord Qin’s side is doing right now… Yang Yanzhao’s heart was filled with anxiety. However, he knew that he couldn’t stop to set up a camp until he knew that the army was completely out of danger. This was an opportunity that Lord Qin and Lady Arthis had bought for them, and he absolutely had to make the best of it!

He glanced back by chance, only to notice the gathering of a dense cloud of Yin energy some ten kilometers behind them right now. He could even detect three unique sources of Judge-class Yin energy erupting from within and clashing against each other. Gnashing his teeth, he turned to his army and bellowed at them, “Full speed ahead! The Black Armored Troops will take the back lines! All troops that fall behind the Black Armored Troops shall be dealt with in accordance with martial law!”

“My lord.” Just then, a young Yin spirit riding a skeletal war horse rushed to his side. Yang Yanzhao glanced at him, only to realize that it was none other than Oda Nobutada. It was strange. He was obviously a Nipponese, but he didn’t sense any ill will from him.

“Why aren’t we fighting back?” Oda Nobutada asked softly, “Our army is fully capable of taking down these Yin beasts.”

Yang Yanzhao shook his head. Instead, he tugged on the reins of his war horse and accelerated the pace of their march.

“We can’t.”

Without missing a beat, he explained coldly, “Ours is an army of seventy thousand. There are bound to be casualties unless we rely on the Karmic Fire Divine Crossbows at our disposal.”

“Five bolts per Yin soldier means three hundred and fifty thousand bolts expended. It’s only the first day of the eastbound expedition right now. What about the monarch beasts that we might encounter in future? And even if we don’t meet a single monarch beast later on, Lord Qin had previously mentioned that Qufu is a heavily-guarded city. If you think about it, Kong Mo has already taken control of the Eastmount Province, and he’s even been trying to expand his reach across the Breakwaters Province. We’re talking about Yin spirits and Yin soldiers that he’s been aggregating for almost a hundred years, so do you think he’s only going to have a hundred thousand Yin soldiers at his disposal? If we use up everything right now, what are we going to use against the alliance of Infernal Judges in future?”

“And even if we manage to take them down, how are we supposed to deal with the daolord later on?”

The implications of their actions were great. This was precisely why Qin Ye’s first reaction had been to escape from the monarch beast.

Naturally, it was also a byproduct of Qin Ye’s cowardly nature.

Oda Nobutada nodded in realization. Nobody had expected to encounter a monarch beast as early as their first day in the eastbound expedition. The journey to Martial City was expected to take three full months. In other words… they had only just taken their first peek under the veil at this magnificent world out there.

Naturally, it wouldn’t be wise to tap on their trump cards as readily as this.

Yang Yanzhao couldn’t be bothered about what Oda Nobutada thought right now, “Fortunately, there’s already a city underneath Valley County right now. That’s a safe zone where we can rest up and regroup. Hell already has a team of five hundred Yin spirits holding the fort over there. Thus, our top priority right now is getting there as soon as we can!”

He couldn’t help but turn back for a second glance at the swirling clouds of Yin energy behind that were now roiling with thunder, “I sincerely believe that Lord Qin wouldn’t let us down.”

………………………………………………….

The might of an Infernal Judge was incredible.

Arthis had once revealed her true form back in Clear Creek County in the mortal realm. Her entire being stood tall as the heavens and sent tremors of alarms across the lands nearby. In fact, all Infernal Judges in the mortal realm would have to suppress their abilities when going about their day-to-day activities. Otherwise, the simplest of their unbridled actions could even cause mountains to tremble and the earth to shake. That said, none of them were holding back right now.

This was because holding back might immediately spell death for them.

Yin beasts were qualitatively different from Yin spirits. The ubiquitous rule that Emissaries of Hell were able to instakill Yin spirits of the same cultivation level didn’t apply to Yin beasts at all. Right now, Arthis, Qin Ye and the monarch beast were locked in a terrifying confrontation. The eruption of Yin energy from their beings swirled about menacingly, transforming into a massive vortex of dark clouds that surrounded them altogether.

SSSS!!! Just then, the monarch spider roared and charged over. But in that instant it was about to trample on Qin Ye and Arthis, it suddenly shrieked and backed off once more. And then, it stared intently at them with all eight of its eyes.

Powerful. Very powerful!

It could tell that the two beings standing in front of it were completely different from the Yin beasts that it had preyed on before. In fact, something within it was crying out to its mind, telling it not to cross the two beings. Unfortunately…

The eight eyes swiftly turned to glance at the rapidly retreating army behind the two Infernal Judges, and the monarch spider couldn’t help but gulp avariciously.

It couldn’t just watch its prey get away like that.

Sss… The bristles on its body stood up all over. This was a display of aggression, warning the two Judges to stand down, or face the wrath of its attacks.

“Let’s see if you understand what we’re saying right now.” The Yin energy swirled about them menacingly as Arthis remarked placidly, “Get lost, or… die.”

Qin Ye’s eyes widened.

Are you sure this is how we should be begging for our lives?

I mean, aren’t we giving him a backhanded slap over here?! How can we be so arrogant when we’re the one asking it for a favour?

“No… I mean… Spider brother? Brother Spider, let me explain…” He immediately pulled Arthis to the side and stepped forward with a dry cough, “Look, we don’t even know each other. But just look at us - our skin is rough and our meat isn’t tender at all. We aren’t tasty. How about this instead - let’s each take a hundred steps back, and declare a line that separates us. And then, we’ll each mind our own business. I know you might be upset about the death of your kids and grandchildren, but we’re still neighbours when all is said and done. Let’s bury the hatchet and let bygones be bygones, alright?”

See? Isn’t that a better way to do things?

The dense Yin energy in the surroundings somewhat obscured the appearances of the spider monarch beast. But as soon as Qin Ye was done with his spiel, the netherflames in the spider monarch beast’s eyes immediately flickered, and it promptly shrunk back.

Qin Ye wiped off the cold sweat on his forehead and turned around to face Arthis with great displeasure, “How many times must I tell you that if you want to be part of the socialist movement, you’ve got to pay attention to how you treat others. Is that how we should be asking others for a favour? It’s a good thing we’ve met a reasonable spider brother. Otherwise--...”

But before he could even finish speaking, Arthis promptly pulled him to the side, closely avoiding a projectile that had shot over in an instant. The clouds of Yin energy around them instantly parted.

Screeee… A deafening screech echoed throughout the surroundings, while a scarlet tongue could be seen slowly retracting back to the mouth of the monarch spider beast.

Qin Ye rubbed his waist as he slowly got to his feet, “Bloody hell… How dare you show me such disrespect when I’m giving you an easy way out?”

Ssss!!! Yet the only response he got was a fiery shriek that stirred even the Yin energy in the sky. The colossal figure raised its front two limbs, signifying its declaration of aggression and war.

Arthis chuckled.

“Be good and stay over there.” She stepped out. Her hair fluttered about menacingly like a crown of thorns, “Watch and learn. This is how an Infernal Judge does battle.”

A split second later, her expression turned completely serious, and she made a swift series of hand seals, “Haa!!!”

A split second later, the spider monarch beast also erupted with terrifying Yin energy. The massive head of a beauty lay suspended slightly off the ground. Her hair scattered about menacingly like poisonous vipers, while spots of netherflames flickered wildly around her. She opened her mouth and unleashed a thunderous bellow at the monarch beast.

ROAAAARRRRRR!!!

SSS!! Provoked, the monarch beast arched its back and roared equally loudly at the beautiful head that was squaring off against it. Simultaneously, the hair on her head twisted and formed a sharp claw that clashed head on against the monarch beast’s limbs.

BOOM!

The lands trembled. This was a duel between two bona fide monsters. Neither used any spells or techniques at all. Instead, they appeared to be striking at each other with the most basic attacks. The earth trembled under the weight of their immense blows, and cracks soon appeared on the ground in an instant.

Qin Ye watched with bated breath.

This was a duel between Infernal Judges.

If this had taken place back in the mortal realm, an entire city would undoubtedly have been razed to the ground. It was no wonder that Infernal Judges were existences that were given charge over an entire province.

He carefully watched the duel pan out. Strictly speaking, Arthis wasn’t the spider monarch beast’s match when it came to a contest of pure strength. However, she didn’t seem suppressed in any way at all. In fact, she employed a multitude of bizarre techniques that even allowed her to slowly gain the upper hand.

Countless icy flames erupted from her seven apertures. These were the cold flames of Hell that would instantly freeze anything it touched. The monarch beast shrieked as it desperately scraped off the ice on its body. Unfortunately, the ice was forming quicker than it could shake them off, and the layer encasing it soon grew thicker and thicker!

“How dare a mere Yin beast challenge a genuine Infernal Judge of Hell?!” Arthis sneered, “We gave you a way out… but do you really think that was because we were afraid of you?!”

As soon as she said that, her hair suddenly scattered to the sides and held the spider monarch beast firmly in place. Then, the rest of her hair formed two gargantuan hands that made hand seals in the air so quickly that it even left afterimages in its wake.

“Despair of Ghosts, Manifestation of Demons!”

With a majestic cry, netherflames immediately bloomed from her seven apertures, spreading all over her body until it consumed every part of her, immolating even the tiniest strands of hair. In an instant, she was transformed into a fiery ball of netherflames that was blazing with glorious splendour.

“This is…” Qin Ye froze. Burning up her life force? Impossible… Arthis is one of the top fifty Infernal Judges across ten billion Yin spirits of the old Hell! There’s no way she would have to resort to burning up her own life force to fight against a Yin beast like this.

But before he could even consider these things any further, Arthis erupted with Yin energy far stronger than what she usually displayed!

BOOM!! A hundred-meter large fireball erupted in the air, and a mighty shockwave of Yin energy swept out in an instant. However, this wasn’t just a pure explosion of Yin energy - it generated a wave of fire that soon gave way to a hundred-meter large flaming lotus platform!

The lotus platform had a total of eighteen tiers, each of which was ostensibly built upon a foundation of human bones. There was a flaming lotus flower perched right at the top of the lotus platform, immolating endlessly with a jade-green netherflame. It bloomed brilliantly, revealing a ten-meter large figure seated right in the center of it all.

It was still incredibly small next to the monarch beast’s body that was a hundred-meters large. However, the monarch beast couldn’t help but unleash a succession of terrified screams as it began to scramble backwards, ploughing out large grooves in the ground as it retreated for its life.

Dead silence.

Things had ostensibly slowed down compared to the heated exchange between the two Judge-class entities just a little while ago. Ding-a-ling… There was the crisp jingle of bells. Qin Ye glanced up, only to notice the appearance of the being that was now seated right on top of the platform.

The entity had three heads and six arms. Each of the three heads represented sorrow, fury and joy. Menacing sharp fangs protruded from each of the mouths, and they were adorned with ostentatious necklaces and other ornaments. Just then, her eyes opened all at once.

This was Rakshasa’s true body!

This was a true demon from Hell! Arthis had finally revealed her true form. Just then, the six arms opened up to reveal a brilliant golden wheel that was spinning rapidly.

She opened all three of her scarlet lips, and the three faces declared with great authority, “Revolution of the Purgatory, Heavenly Dance of the Treasured Wheel.”

Boom!

Lines of illegible scriptures appeared in front of Arthis, while endless pale souls visible to the naked eye danced in and out of these texts. Moments later, the gathering of scriptures suddenly erupted with pitch-black ripples that ravaged the desolate lands around!

The Operative-class spiderlings, the air and the land were all diced up by the expanding scriptures… and then to even smaller bits, until… they were finally ground up into nothing more than fine dust!

“Holy shit…” Qin Ye’s jaws dropped as he watched everything pan out. The colossal monarch beast stood there, rooted to the ground no different from a statue. Then, a split second later, there was a loud bang, and the monarch beast was shattered into countless tiny pieces that began to drift down slowly from high up in the sky.

It suddenly dawned on Qin Ye just how terrifying Emissaries of the old Hell must have been in the past.

It suddenly occurred to him that if Arthis was already this terrifying, then how much more outrageous would the number one Judge of the old Hell, Liu Yu, have to be?

And if Kong Mo still dared to vie for territorial rights despite knowing that Qin Ye was a genuine Emissary of Hell, how many secrets would the Confucian gentry have to be harbouring? How many magical techniques did they have access to, and how many cards did they still have up their sleeves right now?

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