Swish! Swish! Swish!
In a location of The Desolate Lands, within its eastern region, chaotic sounds of sweeping blades, explosive eruptions, and sword howls resounded out ceaselessly. These sounds were followed by grunts and exclamations of pain, the hallowed and exhausted breathing of experts.
An emerald-colored haired beauty with a blank mask covering the lower half of her face soared through the sky, skidding across the ground from time to time. Her slender figure was wrapped by grey-cloth that emanated faint light, and this light pushed away the desolate power that lingered within the air.
She was surrounded by nine soaring blades. They twisted and turned, clashing with incoming bursts of astral force and other armaments. These armaments were held by a pursuing force of cultivators that were dressed in a mishmash of outfits. Their lack of unified dressing betrayed their disorganized and hasty assembly.
There were dozens of men and women amongst them. They raced on foot, enhanced by astral force, as they ran with solemn expressions. The slowest amongst them screamed, shouting with grievance: ”WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?! ” A pathetic whimper escaped his body soon after as an emerald blade arrived at his fleeing back.
A gush of blood erupted from the man ’s chest, his eyes widened as begging emotions effused from them. Unfortunately, they lasted for a second and remained unanswered as the sword moved upwards, splitting his head in half. His brain matter spewed on the floor with gushing blood and bits of his flesh.
His maimed corpse thud onto the floor, skidding a certain distance from his previous running momentum. The death of this individual didn ’t cause the others to increase their speed, because they were already pushing themselves to their limits!!
The emerald-haired figure landed next to the corpse and waved her delicate hand, taking their spatial ring in a practiced fashion, and turned her calm gaze towards the others. A surge of astral force erupted from her and she exploded into movement, shooting towards them.
”Split up! ” The next slowest member shouted in panic, turning away from the group in hopes of escaping. It was a female with a willowy figure.
”DON ’T! ” Another member ahead of her shouted in panic, but the woman had already left their tight-nit fleeing unit. She got no more than a few dozen meters from the group when a green vine escaped the grey dirt they thread and ensnared the woman.
The thin woman exclaimed in horrified shock, using her bladed weapon to cut at the vine, thinking how strange it was that a piece of greenery could exist in that grey desolate sand. But when she saw the faint flickering of grey light from the vine, her expression became even more fearful.
”Dai ’er! ” One of the members called out the woman ’s name, tearful and afraid. Clearly, their relationship was close. But another member forcefully grabbed him by the shoulder before he could act hastily and pulled him along. With tears in his eyes, he saw a scene that would leave him with nightmares until the end of his life!
The one vine split into numerous vines, and then dozens of thick vines swirled around the woman ’s figure as she vigilantly fought. When she saw her hopeless situation, she turned to those fleeing members with hope and a light of wanting to live flashing endlessly in her eyes. Her hoarse voice shouted out: ”SAVE ME!! ”
At that exact moment, the moment she had lowered her guard for external support, more than a dozen vines erupted and engulfed her whole.
She was drawn into the ground as crimson blood gushed out. Her figure vanished beneath the grey sand, and only the splurge of blood remained as evidence of her life.
Gulping, the man who shouted cried tears as he ran even more passionately. He swore on his heart that he ’d get vengeance! Brutal and violent vengeance!!
A sword sliced through the air, and the man felt his neck go cold. When he saw an emerald blade pass by him and the one who held his shoulder, he thought how pretty these blades were. It was his last thought.
Two heads fell and two headless corpses collapsed.
The others continued further ahead, not even looking back as they erected their astral wards in unified fashion to protect themselves. They didn ’t act like the four just now, lowering their guards with unnecessary actions or trying to separate from the group. They remained unified and together, defending against the emerald haired devil that pursued them.
The emerald haired figure flitted through the two corpses, swiping her hand above them and taking their spatial rings. After seeing the others escape in a unified fashion, a faint sigh released from the figure. She held out her hand, and a vine swirling with grey light and traces of crimson glaring blood erupted from the grey sand. It held a spatial ring at its tip, handing it to the woman.
With that, she flickered away.
Half an hour later, the twenty-seven individuals left were grouped together at the base of a mountain. They scoured the surroundings with eyes betraying their vigilance and fear. After using their spiritual sense to inspect the surroundings thoroughly, a member amongst them heaved a heavy sigh of relief.
”She left, ” he said with a weak and exhausted voice.
A woman that was relatively big-breasted, a little thicker than most, and holding a mace shook her head. ”We can ’t lower our guards, ” she reminded. Her eyes kept sweeping the surroundings with vigor.
A middle-aged man, tall and somewhat handsome, squatted towards the ground and placed his hand on the grey sand. His eyes and fingertips lit with radiant light undulating spirituality. He was executing a spell to observe the world via seismic activity.
The others glanced at him, awaiting the news with bated breaths.
After several minutes, he said with a heaving breath. ”She ’s gone. ” Those words were taken far more seriously than when the other member said it, causing the others to noticeably relax as their astral force circulation lowered to the utmost, and their bodies plopped to the ground.
The heavy breathing of numerous figures resounded.
The big-breasted woman grunted with dissatisfaction, ”This was such a failure! ”
The middle-aged man stood up, looking at the sky with a heavy expression. ”Who could ’ve known that a Verdant Forest Elf would be so terrifying in the Desolate Lands? It ’s our bad luck. ”
A sharp-eyed woman stomped her foot, ”We were tricked! That elf wasn ’t a normal Sky Ruler! She had nine high-grade Astral Armaments! To freaking add, they were a set!! Even her cultivation base wasn ’t ordinary, and even Brother Bo Yu with our support held little advantage! It was like fighting a Spatial Resonance expert! ” The woman spoke out all of her inner grievances, energized by her previous fear.
”I don ’t think we were purposefully tricked. It was just a matter of lacking information. We ’ll be better organized and prepared next time. There ’s a renowned array in Desertfall City that restricts wood cultivators greatly. We ’ll retreat, regroup, make further preparations, and return. ” The middle-aged man named Bo Yu said calmly.
”We better! That bitch killed too many of us. If word gets out, who would fear us in the future? ” The sharp-eyed woman stated.
”Pfft! Fear us? We aren ’t a unit or a group, so don ’t pile us together! ” The big-breasted woman said, waving her mace with a tinge of ridicule in her eyes. The sharp-eyed woman froze and then harrumphed, not engaging the woman. She merely whispered a sly insult under her breath.
”Cowardly slut. ” The big-breasted woman didn ’t hear what was said, but she knew it wasn ’t good. And she didn ’t quietly say her retaliatory response, being open and loud.
”Enough! This target has been on the run for a while. We have to be the first to obtain this bountiful prize before anyone else lest we waste those lives for no reason and internal conflict doesn ’t help. ” The middle-aged man reasoned, bringing the seething atmosphere to a calm.
”We ’ll definitely get her. A Verdant Forest Elf of that quality will definitely be worth tens of thousands of astral crystals, and we ’ll be set for decades. ” An exhausted male member spoke, trying to butter up the sharp-eyed woman, but the woman only snorted in annoyance.
Seeing his attempt once more amount to nothing, he wore a bitter smile as he took sneaky glances at the sharp-eyed woman ’s figure, especially her ample bottom and long legs. He stealthily licked his lips, imagining her in nothing but her birthday suit. What he would do to her if…
”WATCH OUT! ” A shout startled the exhausted member out of his lovely imagination, but his response was a little delayed as he turned to see another member of their group with a thick, green vine ensnared around their neck. A pleading expression in their eyes before it abruptly tightened.
The odd twist of their head and neck ended any attempt at a struggle. The warm corpse went limp. The exhausted man ’s eyes widened, but as he tried to jump up out of fear, he found his legs tethered to the ground. With widened eyes, he looked at the grey sand beneath his feet and screamed.
But his voice was abruptly seized by a thick vine that wrapped around his throat. The last thought in his mind as he felt its grip was: ”Will my neck twist like that? ”
The death of two members weren ’t alone, but roughly two-thirds of the twenty-seven members were simultaneously ensnared by vines, their necks hoisted and twisted until death.
Bo Yu was the one who shouted, and he shot out with his astral force, taking to the skies. As the one with the highest combat prowess and cultivation base, he felt assured that he could escape, but he didn ’t reach more than twenty meters into the air before emerald crisscrossing lines of sword light converged on his figure.
He let out a sound he ’d never released before in his life and would never again as his body slowly separated into segments, blood oozing out as multiple thuds crashed into the ground. The dismembered corpse of their strongest member set off alarms of horror and panic in the group. They no longer worked together, separating wildly.
That was their mistake.
One by one, they were either sliced into pieces or crushed by vines.
”Haaa! Haaa! Haaa! ” Heavy breathing matched the swinging power of a mace as the big-breasted woman and sharp-eyed woman fought back-to-back. The sharp-eyed woman held a dagger, flicking it from time to time to fight off vines or sword light that sliced towards her.
”We surrender!! ” The sharp-eyed woman screamed aloud with fear, hoping to eke out a path of life. But to her horror, she only received whipping vines and soaring swords.
”AH! ” She shrieked as her dagger-wielding arm was cut off from a moment of carelessness. She didn ’t even get another chance to plead as a sword plunged itself in her skull. The sword continued through it and stabbed through the big-breasted woman ’s back, spewing both of their blood onto the grey sand beneath their feet.
The big-breasted woman froze, feeling the wood force pouring into her body and her lifeforce withering. Even her astral force could no longer circulate like normal. But that didn ’t matter as her heart was already pierced by another blade, swiftly ending her life.
The scene went silent as the last member of the twenty-seven met their end. The vines whipped out as they snatched spatial rings, and the swords circulated together until a figure arrived from a distance. They flew over and released sword howls of excitement, as if being drenched in blood gave them further energy.
The emerald haired figure stepped past the corpses, retrieving all the spatial rings, and removing her mask. From her emerald-colored eyes, she displayed a gorgeous countenance of an elf.
It was Qing Qiumu!
With a sigh, she kept her Nine Meadows Astral Swords and the vines retreated into the grey sand as if they were never there.
She looked at the bloody scene before her. Since she arrived on this Four Extremes Continent, on this Desolate Land, she was met with pursuit after pursuit. Her very first minute here she encountered a group of Grey Sands Elves on lizard-like creatures. They were startled that she was present, but after seeing her appearance, they left her alone.
This, however, didn ’t stop the human Seekers from acting against her. Before she knew it, just three days in, she was hunted by Seekers. At first, she was patient and merciful, but after learning of their intent and viciousness, she held nothing back.
She wasn ’t some delicate flower that could be taken advantage of, having experienced hundreds of battles in her dozens of years of life. This was especially so when she obtained the alchemical products of Wei Wuyin and astral weapons. She was a fearsome foe not to be underestimated
Furthermore, she realized that this was a trial of sorts, and if she acted passively, then the world would crush her unhesitatingly. She didn ’t want to be crushed, so she wielded her swords in defiance.
”…I ’ve touched it. ” Qing Qiumu noted the unique soul fluctuations emanating from her Astral Soul. She faintly smiled as she knew her cultivation was about to make a breakthrough. She needed to restore her condition, find an isolated area, and assail the third astral tribulation!
Thinking about her rapidly rising cultivation base, she warmly smiled as she recalled the unearthly handsome face of Wei Wuyin. ”I wonder how he ’s doing? Knowing him, probably taking over this world bit by bit. Haha, or tricking someone. ” Thinking about all the exaggerated stories Wei Wuyin told her, she brilliantly smiled.
Will they meet?
With that final thought, her figure vanished, leaving a mass of corpses that would soon decay from the ambient desolate power, becoming nothing in a few hours.
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