Chapter 298: Breakthrough
Corpses were scattered everywhere in the mountain valley after the tragedy. What was even more horrifying was that most of the corpses weren’t complete. Broken off heads seemed to be leaking rubber balls as they each left behind their own trail of blood. Fresh bloodstains stood out on the big and small rocks on the valley’s bottom. Bodies with their limbs cut off lay quietly in the narrow gullies of the mountain valley like hacked off tree trunks.
The moon shone serenely down on this scene from hell. The souls that had yet to disperse upon death were pulled along the cliff of the mountain valley, gathering into a spiral that shimmered in and out of existence. This spiral was slowly and carefully absorbed by a sharp weapon sparkling with brown light.
The Demonslayer Edge currently lacked its dazzling luster as it hovered quietly over Han Shuo’s head, like a loyal follower guarding its master. Its brown edge didn’t shine beneath the moonlight. However, it emitted a strange combination of lights and killing intent around Han Shuo when the scintillating souls drifted over.
Spots of light shone like the stars within the blood red killing intent. The brilliant stars swayed and danced like little elves, slowly blossoming into a charmingly beautiful light for a moment before finally gathering in the dark brown Demonslayer Edge.
The strength of two thousand dead souls wasn’t weak at all, in fact, their combined power was immense. Han Shuo was able to absorb sixty percent of this soul energy, and the Demonslayer Edge took in the remaining forty percent. As the main instigator behind the scenes, Han Shuo’s random eavesdropping had caused the leaders of the various powers in the Valley of Sunshine to speculate widely in fright. It had also created a chance for Han Shuo to break through the bloodlust realm, and make the flames of battle dance along the length of the Demonslayer Edge.
The cloud of red mist had become so dense, it was impossible to disperse them anymore. They wrapped tightly Han Shuo, twisting into bizarre knotted strands. His skin glinted with a deep red light from within the mist, the bones all over his body constantly emitting crisp crackling sounds. A terrifying deathly air and killing aura alternated between a weak and strong fluctuation. Han Shuo’s tough, handsome face trembled in an aberrant manner.
He maintained this state from night till sunrise. As the sun rose, it discovered a valley gradually blanketed in a crimson fog. Dense as only fog could be, it actually covered more than half of the skies above the mountain valley. Impervious to sunlight, the sun only made its crimson hue even more brilliant. The entire mountain valley looked as though it was relocated amidst a bloody hell. With the dead bodies scattered across the valley, this halo of blood mist made the scene even more desolate, evil, and terrifying.
The powers in the Valley of Sunshine were confused and fearful day and night for the next three days. Clouds of blood were still constantly shifting into different forms within the mountain valley. Faint shadows started drifting out from the back of Han Shuo’s neck, gradually merging with the bloody clouds. Devil heads then slowly took on clearer form, their appearance abnormal, frightening, and ferocious.
Fog and clouds of blood all melded with the shadows. Twelve uniquely shaped, but equally creepy and ferocious monsters finally took shape after five days. Some came with a spiky head and sharp claws, others had thick row of fangs like a shark, and some even had thorny barbs all over their backs. These twelve grim demons were each different in appearance but possessed a similar presence, Han Shuo’s unique presence.
They all possessed Han Shuo’s unique presence as they were created from his body. The little skeleton, earth elite zombie, and wood elite zombie hiding in a valley gully didn’t make any unfriendly moves towards the grim demons thanks to this familiar presence.
Seven more days passed. The shapes of these twelve capering monsters constantly changed, there were times when they even took Han Shuo’s appearance. The strangest thing was that, on the fifth day, Han Shuo was surrounded by twelve exact copies of himself. On the last day, the twelve ever changing “things” returned to their original grim demon appearance before turning into red rays and hiding in Han Shuo’s body.
Exhaling a soft breath, Han Shuo finally opened his fey-like eyes after all of the grim demons had concealed themselves in his body. Sweeping a glance around the mountain valley that exuded a dank stench rising to the skies, he murmured, “Finally, the separate demon realm!”
The mountain valley had violently shook and collapsed under the massive explosion. All of the paths into the mountain valley were blocked. The only thing able to enter was the warm sunlight pouring down from the sky. During this period, the three dark creatures—the little skeleton, earth elite zombie, and wood elite zombie, had dedicated their all to guarding Han Shuo.
The forces in the Valley of Sunshine had sent out people to spy shortly after the tragedy, but unfortunately, no one could leave the place alive after being ambushed by the three dark creatures. The spies all turned into mournful souls just like the mercenaries in the mountain valley. In the end, even their corpses quickly rotted away.
The stench in the mountain valley really was unpleasant. Han Shuo frowned as his mind spun. He reached out his hand to grab the hovering Demonslayer Edge next to him. The Demonslayer Edge instantly turned into brown spots of light and disappeared in a strange manner upon touching Han Shuo’s hand. Utilizing the Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens, Han Shuo tore through the air, leaving the mountain valley in a blink of an eye.
On a low mountain top five miles to the north of the Valley of Sunshine.
Laureton of the Cairo mercenary band, Florida of the Rainbow Sickle mercenary band, chief Adam of the House of Menlo, Katar of the orc tribe, and leaders of various forces, including even Trunks who’d just returned from his mission, had been invited.
All of the major power holders in the Valley of Sunshine had gathered at this location today. Everyone had ugly expressions on their face, especially those who’d fallen victim to the mithril mine’s tragedy. They were all investigating the matter with the intent of visiting furious revenge on whoever was responsible. They were here today to brainstorm a strategy for the future of the Valley of Sunshine.
“Who did it?” Everyone shared the same question in their hearts.
With the exception of the great powers who’d suffered heavy damages, all those who hadn’t participated in the battle were a suspect. Even those small forces who’d only come to watch and fled the quickest, thus suffering only small losses, were targets of suspicion.
“Trunks, your Soul Destroyers didn’t participate in this battle. Your mercenary band is the strongest amongst those who didn’t join. Currently, only your Soul Destroyer band is completely unharmed while we are all heavily damaged. Your strength isn’t far off from ours now either. It seems like your group benefitted the most this time! I’m thinking, was it you who did this good deed?” Florida of the Rainbow Sickles stared at Trunks as he spoke in a sinister tone, his handsome face full of menace.
Trunks was secretly delighted and had no idea how to repay the person behind the scenes. However, he maintained an expression dripping with sorrow. Trunks had been faking long, heavy sighs when he heard Florida’s words. Trunks abruptly stood up and violently slammed his hand on the stone table, breaking it into pieces.
Trunks didn’t even spare a glance at the experts around him who were defending themselves against the stone fragments. He glared furiously at Florida and said, “If you want to slander us with unfounded accusations, then let’s fight to the death! Our Soul Destroyer band accepted a mission half a month ago. All of the elite members, including me, had left the Valley of Sunshine to handle it. Chief Laureton is the one most clear about this. Florida, everyone is here today. If you want to kill me then do it fair and square, no need for plots and schemes!”
When Trunks shattered the stone table with one blow, the ray of silver aura emitting from his palm hadn’t escape the eyes of those assembled. Everyone here was sharply intelligent, who didn’t know what silver fighting aura meant for a swordsman? Thanks to his own efforts and the Rebirth Pill, Trunks had advanced to the rank of great swordmaster. In addition to being a demonstration of his strength, the blow was warning the leaders here to think carefully.
The Soul Destroyer mercenary band had been able to openly recruit experts in recent times. Add that to the abundant funding it received, Trunks’ fame, and the mercenaries’ previous foundations as Rainbow Sickle members, the mercenary band had developed at an astonishing rate in just a short amount of time.
Perhaps the Soul Destroyers wouldn’t have been noticed by Laureton and Florida if it weren’t for the tragedy in the mountain valley. It was a pity that these forces had suffered a major blow in the valley, their accumulation of strength over many years destroyed in just the blink of an eye. Their power had dropped so drastically that they had no confidence that they could easily swallow Trunks. Moreover, the Soul Destroyers existed in the shadows. The various powers still didn’t even know where the Soul Destroyer base was. This made them into a force that was truly on par with the four great powers.
By displaying his powerful strength at the great swordmaster rank in such a tough manner, Trunks was directly provoking Florida. This altitude was obviously far different from how he’d kept a low profile in the past.
Even though he practiced thunder magic along with light magic, light archmage Florida still hadn’t fully recovered from the last time Han Shuo had wounded him. If he fought Trunks, whose strength had rapidly advanced to great swordmaster, with his current power, plus their previous bone deep hatred, Florida had no doubt that Trunk would take this chance to rip him to shreds.
Therefore, Florida’s cheeks twitched in anger as he glared darkly at Trunks before he opened his mouth to speak in a stiff voice, “The most important thing now is to find out who was behind this. I have no time to fight you!”
When these words sounded, the leaders in the Valley of Sunshine all understood one thing. Florida was afraid!