Chapter 637: Longxing Temple (2)

“145 million Yin…” The alarm blared wildly. Meanwhile, one of the SRC researchers had already fainted and collapsed to the ground.

The shrill alarm caused a tense silence to fill the room. Some of the personnel in the room silently helped the fainted researcher back to his feet, while others simply stared at the screen. The blinding scarlet blip on the screen was like a lump that stifled all the words in their throats. Even breathing was difficult for them right now.

After approximately 20 seconds, one of the investigators turned his head and stared at everyone with great trembling, “Yama-King?”

Nobody said a word.

An Abyssal Prefect was an entity that commanded Yin energy readings ranging from 10 million Yin to 30 million Yin, and this was the highest recorded Yin energy reading ever detected in Cathay thus far.

However, the earlier number had blasted past any Yin energy readings that they had ever seen in their entire lives.

“Are we… going to die?” A female SRC researcher asked softly. They didn’t show any signs of resistance because the situation seemed completely hopeless.

In fact, it wasn’t just the Insignia Province.

Nobody in the surrounding provinces felt in the slightest bit hopeful that they could come out of this calamitous encounter alive! The only thing on their mind right now was to use every remaining moment of their lives to document all evidence of a Yama-class existence.

Apart from these duties of theirs, they were no different from mere mortals in the face of such absolute power.

30 seconds later, a middle-aged investigator seated right at the front of the room abruptly turned around and barked at them all, “What are you still doing standing around?! What’s there to be afraid of?!”

His voice thundered throughout the otherwise silent room, “Haven’t you ever considered the possibility that a day like this would come when you first joined the Special Investigations Department? Which one of us doesn’t face death everyday when we fight against the supernatural forces? Don’t you know how many of us perish each year in these encounters? This outbreak simply means that… our turn has finally come.”

“Qian Xiangchuan, immediately alert the headquarters!” “Li Donglai, contact the city government right away!” “Zhou Feng, activate the authority of the Special Investigations Department and take control of all military and armed forces! And stop looking at me like that! We’ll evacuate as many people as we can!!”

One by one, he named the key personnel holders and dished out his instructions to them. Meanwhile, the investigators who were called immediately stood at attention and responded at the top of their voices, “Understood!!”

The middle-aged man’s cheeks trembled as he boomed, “Get going! Pronto!”

“So long as we can get these things done before this madness befalls us… perhaps we might still have the time to pen down our final words or our wills…”

Just then, his phone suddenly rang. He glanced at the caller, and his eyes immediately lit up.

“Chief Mo! Please--...” Just then, he suddenly paused.

And then, he revealed an expression of absolute disbelief, before finally hanging up after a minute of silence. Then, as though in a stupor, he looked up at the rest of the investigators in the room.

“What’s the matter?” One of the investigators paused and probed cautiously, “What instructions did the upper echelons relay? Protect the important sites at all costs?”

“No…” The middle-aged man responded softly, and then stared blankly at the ceiling, “He said--... Do not panic, and carry on as usual. There’s no danger…”

……………………………………………….

Mo Changhao and Zhou Xianlong remained here in Fengyang County.

An Abyssal Prefect and a Yama-King were here. Even if they might be Emissaries of Hell, it was part and parcel of their duties to remain behind.

They remained in their car, staring in complete disbelief at the immense column of Yin energy that was rising high into the sky.

How powerful… How insanely powerful!

It was a might that was beyond their comprehension. The clouds in the skies were completely swept away, while the clouds of Yin energy roiled everywhere on the ground. Meanwhile, dust and debris flew everywhere, some of which even drifted about weightlessly as though they defied the laws of physics. Meanwhile, the trees in the vicinity swayed wildly about, leaning wherever the intense nethergale swept. Even the rushing river nearby was tossed about helplessly at the mercy of the Yin energy.

Yin energy that gave rise to physical changes in the mortal realm. This was the first time a Yama-King had made its appearance in the mortal realm in recent times. Moreover, Fengyang County - a place that had never witnessed any supernatural outbreaks, had suddenly fallen prey to one of the most intense outbreaks in the history of Cathay. No matter how one looked at it, this was an incident of historical significance.

“This has to be the Harken. He actually wasn’t lying to us…” Zhou Xianlong stared intently at the swirling clouds of Yin energy in the sky. He wasn’t going to miss a single moment of this spectacle.

The dark clouds of Yin energy had already obscured the moon and the stars from their vision. Meanwhile, a hole opened up right in the middle of the swirling clouds in the sky. Green lightning arced menacingly within the hole that had opened up, and if one looked closely enough, they could even see the illusory appearance of a dragon hidden within.

“How absolutely terrifying…” Mo Changhao gulped nervously, “Yama-King… the legendary top Emissaries of Hell. Who would’ve thought that they would have such heaven-defying abilities?”

“What exactly does Fengyang County hide that requires the attention of a Yama-King?”

…………………………………………………..

SSSS!!! The Bones of Eternity in the lake screamed madly as soon as the Harken’s Yin energy erupted.

Layer by layer, its scales rose up and stood on end, even as it stared intently at the Harken with its golden eyes. Its duty and obligation stirred it to step forward to stop the Harken, but its instinct told it otherwise.

Meanwhile, the Puppets of Ten Extinctions turned around stiffly, but they didn’t fire any arrows at all. Instead, a wave of Yin energy emerged from their bodies, coalescing into a boundless, material curtain of Yin energy that slowly unraveled itself just like a blooming lotus flower.

The black curtain of death was thousands of meters long, and it emitted waves of energy that appeared to endow the statues with ever increasing power. Simultaneously, the waves of energy also caused a ring filled with astral symbols to appear right beneath each of their feet, increasing their defenses against the oncoming attack.

It was a military formation!

The curtain of Yin energy blanketed the entire Longxing Temple. Everything it fell on immediately turned illusory. After approximately ten minutes, a somewhat raspy voice spoke from the heart of the dense Yin energy, “Cough… How dismal… To think that it took me this long to reveal my true form…”

Whoosh! It opened its two golden eyes as it spoke! At once, with a terrifying howl, the cloud of Yin energy concealing the Harken suddenly exploded, revealing the Harken’s true form.

Although it wasn’t the first time Qin Ye had seen the Harken’s true form, he still couldn’t help but be astonished by its grandeur.

The Harken’s golden scales gleamed like the sea under the radiant sum, shimmering softly with fine golden light. A long mane of white fur ran straight from its head all the way to its tail, flowing about like majestic ocean waves, even in the absence of wind.

A tiger’s head with a single horn on top, a dog’s ears, a dragon’s body, a lion’s tail, and a Kirin’s feet. This was the true form of the mythical being known as the Nine Dissimilitude! And right now, a one-meter large ball of light had already coalesced right in front of its mouth!

That said, the Yin energy in the surroundings were still roaring and rumbling as they poured straight into it. Meanwhile, the ball of light was accruing more and more energy, almost as though it were a singularity that contained the universe. The extent of its might was easily apparent to anyone watching the terrifying sight. Even Qin Ye who was hiding some distance behind couldn’t help but feel his footing grow slightly unstable, as though he could easily be swept away at any time.

As the Yin energy grew thicker and denser, the Bones of Eternity screamed more and more desperately. The waves in the lake sloshed about violently, and the Bones of Eternity even glanced over with a pleading look in its eyes.

It had no spiritual intelligence, but it still had its instincts.

And its instincts were telling it that it didn’t want to die!

Sss… SSS!!! Its scales trembled violently as it flailed about within the lake. However, the Harken simply squinted its eyes and murmured softly, as though declaring the onset of a law, “Hell’s Art, First Style - Divine Dust.”

BOOM!!! Qin Ye shut his eyes as soon as he heard the Harken’s words.

Light.

Everything was filled with light - boundless light.

An intense light erupted from the Harken’s mouth, filling the heavens and the earth, and then the realms beyond. It was almost as though the sun had been compressed to the point of a singularity, before exploding with a big bang. An astonishing shockwave swept through the lands. Qin Ye immediately crossed his hands in front of his body, shielding himself desperately even as his clothes fluttered wildly. In that instant, he even had the absurd sense that the Harken’s strike spelt the end of the world.

It was indescribable and terrifying - so much so that he didn’t even dare keep his eyes open to witness what was happening in the sea of light.

He could tell that the ocean of light was filled with the primordial powers of the universe, and he could hear the rumbling sounds of destruction around him

The intense winds around him finally subsided after an inordinate amount of time, and it was only then that he finally set his hands down.

No change?

The Longxing Temple was still the same Longxing Temple as before.

And the Puppets of Ten Extinctions were still standing right where they were.

“No… there is!” He took a closer look and realized that the Puppets of Ten Extinctions had all turned back around. If one were to say that the sculptures earlier appeared to be filled with some traces of spirituality in them, they were now completely devoid of that, and reduced to nothing more than ordinary stone sculptures.

The surface of the lake was still sloshing about with waves. However, Qin Ye could tell that the Bones of Eternity had vanished without a trace.

In fact, on closer inspection, Qin Ye could see that the entire surface of the Longxing Temple, including the rooms within, were now all gleaming with a soft, golden hue, almost as though something had washed over it just moments ago.

It was a sensation of realization that was difficult to express. Put differently, it was almost like a beautiful maiden clad in a thin veil, yet  nothing could be seen. But now, it was like the last bastion of defences had been removed.

It was almost as though… everything had vanished.

“Hell’s Art?” Qin Ye surveyed his surroundings intently, before sighing with uncertainty as he turned to the Harken, “With that earlier strike of yours, did you… sever all of the Longxing Temple’s connections with the runes of Yin Talismans within? I can’t tell exactly what you’ve done, but my intuition tells me that there’s no longer any danger.”

The Harken nodded lazily, “Divine Dust… strikes only at the runes of Yin Talismans. These are the essence of everything that makes up the netherworld. You can think of it as a neutron bomb that had just gone off. It strikes at the mechanism within, destroying everything while leaving an empty shell on the outside.”

It coldly raised its front paws, “After all, I, too, wish to see what kind of treasures one of the Eight Great Clans would consider important enough to include as part of their contingency plan for their future generations.”

This is… just too damned awesome…

It took Qin Ye several deep breaths to calm his mind down. And then, he picked the Harken up like a well-oiled machine, gulped nervously, before rushing forward in a violent stream of nethergale.

His Yin energy rushed over like a tide, sweeping right over thousands of Puppets of Ten Extinctions. Yet, not a single one of them turned to look at him this time. All of the statues remained rooted to the ground where they were.

Qin Ye didn’t even glance at them. Each of these statues were precious works of art in their own right, but even then, it didn’t matter. After all, how precious could the statues in the front courtyard be as compared to the treasures hidden within the Longxing Temple?

Whoosh… At once, he rushed straight through the temple gate, and the first thing that he saw was a rectangular Buddhist Temple. It spanned 10,000 meters from end to end, and stood at nine stories tall. It was lofty and magnificent - so grand that it made everyone standing within its premises feel absolutely insignificant.

“There’s nothing much to see below. Most of the items here are merely collector’s items in Hell. Just grab a handful of them, and you should have enough to placate the merchant ships that will be coming in the opening of the sea port. We’ve no need for Hell's artwork for now. After all, these are things that only the nobles and royals have a use for.” The Harken’s eyes remained transfixed at the top of the temple, “Head to the very top. That’s where the most precious things here are kept.”

Qin Ye nodded. The overwhelming sense of anticipation stymied all efforts on his part to respond verbally. After all, he was faced with the prospects of uncovering some of the greatest treasures accrued by the founder of the Ming Dynasty in Hell! The sheer thought of that made his skin numb with excitement!

Qin Ye ascended the tower floor by floor. As soon as he arrived on the eighth floor, Qin Ye could already sense soft fluctuations of Yin energy from the artifacts stored there. However, he didn’t even bother pausing to take a closer look.

The best artifacts must be kept right at the top of the tower!

There weren’t any other obstacles that stood in Qin Ye’s way. The Zhu Clan probably knew that so long as someone could breach the Longxing Temple’s external defenses, they would be able to clear any hidden traps within as well. Thus, rather than conceal or hide the treasures, everything within the tower was laid out openly and without restrictions.

Whoosh! As soon as he arrived on the top floor, he was greeted by a golden splendour that instantly dazzled his eyes!

Treasures… Treasures everywhere!!

Unlike the eight preceding floors, the top floor was more akin to a western dragon’s lair. The entire expanse of the space on the top floor was paved with treasures and valuables. There were even precious jades, gemstones, and other materials that Qin Ye didn’t even know about. Some were even carved into exquisite hairpins, accessories, jewelry, and so on and so forth. All in all, it could only be described as a sea of treasures.

It was absolutely astonishing.

His mind buzzed with all kinds of words associated with wealth. Riches were displayed everywhere he looked. If a person with a weak heart had seen the sight that Qin Ye did, he might well have passed out right away!

The visual impact was simply too stunning.

Qin-poorest-King-Yanluo-of-Hell-Ye gasped furiously for air before he was finally able to peel his eyes away from the sheer opulence and riches before him.

Wealth was great. But there was something else in the room that clearly stood out to him like the moon among the stars.

There were eight scrolls suspended in mid-air, right above the piles of treasures.

Each of them was wrapped with a golden sleeve, and bound up with a luxurious vermillion band. Beyond that, each scroll emitted terrifying fluctuations of Yin energy.

These were hands down the most beautiful things in the room.

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