Chapter 55: A change in status
The other wolf rider, upon seeing Han Shuo rush over wielding a longsword, forcefully widened his eyes that rested beneath his furry forehead. He roared furiously, obviously unpracticed in the common language, “Tri… tricky humans, you are… looking for death!”
The giant wolf, beneath his legs, howled and the orc wolf rider whipped out a crossbow from behind him, raised it, and shot it at Han Shuo. It whistled with an ear-piercing sound as it flew towards Han Shuo’s neck.
His magical yuan churning quickly, Han Shuo focused his concentration. That sharply whistling crossbolt suddenly seemed to slow down in his eyes, as bizarre as the slow motion scenes in the movies that Han Shuo used to watch. In stark contrast to the crossbow bolt’s speed, was Han Shuo’s strong and speedy perception.
When the crossbolt had flown to about a meter away from Han Shuo, the longsword in his hand abruptly thrust out and it landed an unerringly accurate hit on the head of the bolt. A sharp crack resounded and the crossbolt suddenly exploded into pieces.
Even after destroying the oncoming crossbow bolt, Han Shuo’s speed, although still on the back of the battlesteed, wasn’t affected at all. Before the wolf rider had the chance to fire off a second bolt, Han Shuo had already raised his longsword and rushed in front of the wolf rider.
The cold arc of a blade flared out from Han Shuo’s right hand, wielding the sword. The longsword had been solid and heavy, but it was as light and graceful as a feather in Han Shuo’s grasp.
The orc wolf rider also raised its sword, but just as the two swords were about to clash together, a smaller, brown crossbow bolt suddenly flew out from Han Shuo’s right sleeve. The crossbolt whooshed as it flew past the orc’s longsword and sank into the orc wolf rider’s neck with a soft sound.
Its mouth frothing with bloody bubbles, the orc wolf rider finally spat out this word with much difficulty as the large hand, which had been holding up the longsword, suddenly lost strength. The heavy longsword brought down its fit and bulky body into falling off the huge wolf’s back. It was obvious from the looks of things that it was dead.
“A race with low intelligence indeed. Heh!” Han Shuo’s previously stern and cold expression vanished as he came to the side of the huge wolf with a face filled of traces of an evil smile. A flick of his longsword sent the bag on the huge wolf’s body flying towards the battlesteed behind him. Afterwards, the sword stabbed downwards and the giant wolf also toppled over in a pool of blood.
“Kill, kill, kill!”
At this moment, a wave of figures suddenly materialized from the corner of the northern street. More than ten wolf riders were howling loudly as they desperately chased a band of mages and warriors. Amongst the escapees were Beacher and the others from the light major of the Academy, riding on inferior battlesteeds.
“Hurry and go!” Han Shuo immediately reacted after pausing momentarily. He lifted the reins in his hand and the battlesteed trotted out with dull, hasty clops as it changed directions once more to charge towards the north.
Fanny and the others were tongue tied as they watched Han Shuo’s dog eat dog performance. Seeing Han Shuo suddenly rush out, they too understood that the situation was dire. They also urged their battlesteeds to follow behind Han Shuo, pathing their escape to the north.
Han Shuo’s crew made their way to a large canyon after half a day’s worth of frantic galloping on the back of their horses. The sides of the canyon were steep, and a vast river was at its end. Han Shuo and the others reined in their battlesteeds at the end of the canyon and gazed at the river’s azure waters, suddenly sinking into a quandary.
“This should be the Empire’s Nirolan River. We can make our way to the city of Balthazar in the southern part of the Empire after crossing the Nirolan River. Balthazar City and Zajoski City aren’t too far apart. Although it’s not as heavily fortified as Zajoski City, it’s sure to have a heavily armed guard. I think we’ll be safe as long as we can make it to Balthazar City.”
Gene creased his brow in thought as he looked at the vast Nirolan River and then suddenly spoke afterwards.
“In order to make it to Balthazar, we must cross the Nirolan River first, but this Nirolan River is so vast. I think we’ll be unable to make it across without a ship ferrying us.” Fanny’s face was full of anxiety as she sighed while gazing at the azure river waters from afar.
Han Shuo hadn’t said anything after reaching this place and only self absorbedly rifled through the two large bags on the battlesteed. The shops of the town of Drol were set up for the adventurers and mercenaries, so the shops mostly sold goods needed for battle.
Han Shuo took inventory and realized that out of the two bags looted from the two wolf riders, there were four crossbows and more than ten bolts of the highest quality, three daggers of high quality, two longswords and mage staffs of ordinary quality, and three sets of leather armor designed to be worn next to the skin. Apart from this, there were also a few bottles of healing medicine and all sorts of poisons.
Han Shuo first picked out the sharp dagger with a sapphire embedded in it and naturally concealed it close to his body. He then carefully put away the bottles of various poisons and finally poured out the weapons and armor out of the bags and onto the ground. He raised his head, looked at everyone, and said calmly. “Put these things away and prepare to fight!”
The necromancy students and teachers, who had been sighing and frowning in deep thought of potential strategies, all suddenly started at Han Shuo’s words. Gene paused and suddenly remembered Han Shuo’s performance just now. He exclaimed in surprise and stared at Han Shuo in question, “Bryan, did you use the bone arrow magic just now?”
Gene’s question caused everyone except for Fanny to stare at Han Shuo with a face full of shock. Lisa even squealed with fright and pointed her right finger at Han Shuo with a face full of incredulity. “That’s right… Bryan, how can you use magic?”
“This isn’t the time to discuss such matters. A portion of the orc wolf riders were headed this way. I think those damned wolf riders will reach here quite soon. We have a canyon in front of us and the vast Nirolan River beneath us. What we should do now is consider how to handle the orc wolf riders that are about to arrive.” Han Shuo’s expression was calm as he neatly arranged the weapons that had been within the bags, calmly explaining as he did so.
“If it wasn’t for you leading us to this forsaken place, how would we be in such dire straits?” Bella glanced at Han Shuo disdainfully upon hearing his words and jeered at him with a cold expression.
His brow furrowing, Han Shuo’s calm face suddenly grew cold as irrepressible sense of disgust and dislike grew involuntarily in his heart. He lifted his head to look at the mocking Bella and said, “Do you mean my decision was wrong?”
Bella had been about to open her mouth and say “precisely” when she suddenly realized that Han Shuo’s gaze was sinisterly cold. Bella’s body shuddered involuntarily upon seeing his gaze was like that of jackals and wolves sizing up their prey. She smiled fearfully and stammered, “I, I didn’t mean that.”
Nodding, a smile found its way onto Han Shuo face again as he smiled as though nothing had happened. “Since that’s the case, everyone pick your weapon. Our mental strength is limited and the casting range of magic isn’t as far as crossbows. I think we should first use weapons, and when the weapons are useless, then use magic to attack. Come, let’s make some preparations and wait for those wolf riders to come to their deaths.”
Han Shuo’s performance now was quite like the style of someone in charge. This would have originally been a very comical scene. After all, he was an errand slave for the necromancy major and had no right to call the shots.
However, after experiencing the horrors of Han Shuo going berserk in the Dark Forest and his previous cold and cruel killing of the two wolf riders, no one thought it was funny to follow Han Shuo’s orders.
It was like they were all getting to know Han Shuo all over again. Even Fanny and Gene came docilely over and started to choose crossbows from Han Show’s hands. No one raised any objections in defiance of Han Shuo.
Unbeknownst to anyone, the original errand slave Han Shuo had established authority amongst them, causing them to willingly listen to Han Shuo’s directives.