Chapter 362 A Royal Going on an Expedition Himself
Huang Shengyi’s flesh and bones were soon burnt into ashes.
Then, his soul was exposed.
To everyone’s astonishment, Huang Shengyi’s soul was quite unlike normal souls. Threads of black mist were attached to it, penetrating it like worms and snakes. His soul gave off a sinister, blood-curdling aura and a faint foul odor of decay. Surrounded by the Taoist True Fire and being refined by it, two voices carried out from that soul. One was Huang Shengyi’s painful scream, the other was a monstrous, terrifying, ear-splitting roar…
“He has even sold his soul to Extra-terrestrial Devils…”
At that sight, all the people registered what had happened.
The ghostly black sea of fire Huang Shengyi cast at the last moment was on par with the magic of a real Sage. It turned out that the source of that power was from the devil.
“Ow… Immortal master, help, help…” Huang Shengyi’s soul continued to implore at the end of his life. But that wicked dark power infiltrated his soul could not even save itself. Being burnt by the Taoist True Fire, it grappled and struggled. Shortly, a hideous face materialized from it and let out a roar of outrage before evaporating like a puff of smoke.
Huang Shengyi’s soul and the Extra-terrestrial Devil that encroached his spirit were completely refined into ashes in no time.
Seconds ago, the Semi-Sage still had everything under control. But in a trice, the wind blew another way and soon he met his end.
The abrupt turn of the event was flabbergasting.
Standing on the Samsara Knife, Li Mu was also a little surprised to see that he had handled the enemy so effortlessly.
He had actually braced himself for a prolonged battle or a guerrilla war.
Certainly, Huang Shengyi had struck a bad patch.
If it was anyone else who challenged him that day, even a real Sage could only defeat him in the battle but not stop him from fleeing. To say the least, Huang Shengyi had had a deal with the Extra-terrestrial Devils. His utmost evil powers and various lethal means had not been employed yet. If he had resorted to those powers and skills, he would be able to fight against a real Sage. Yet, before he got to show off those moves, he was burnt down by Li Mu’s Taoist True Fire.
That was his fate.
Li Mu was destined to thwart him.
Gazing at the place where the ashes of Huang Shengyi were blown away, Li Mu observed a moment of silence.
“Get out! You have 10 seconds!”
Li Mu glared Huang’s air force in the distance, then glowered at the badly shaken experts from various sects and the imperial army, and ranted ruthlessly.
Swoosh! Swoosh! Swoosh!
All the experts who vowed to be loyal to Huang Shengyi before, including that brawny bald man carrying a pair of axes were too scared to utter a word. Like startled rabbits, they turned tails right away and ran for their lives. They all dreaded that Li Mu would chase after them, wielding his broadsword at them like mad.
On the field, those experts from assorted sects who had been dragged into the fight against the Yue Mountain Faction had long wished to withdraw themselves from the confrontation. Thus, they were overjoyed to see that scene and immediately threw away an array of weapons they retrieved to attack the mountain area before backing off like the ebbing tides.
The imperial army that rushed to the battlefield on orders was the only force that did not budge.
A jet of broadsword light flashed.
Next second, Li Mu emerged in front of the formation of the Flying Arrow Battalion.
Numerous arrows were loaded and bowstrings strained.
Countless arrowheads all aimed at Li Mu, who was suspending in the air about 10 meters over their head.
“Still not back off?” Li Mu flashed a stern look at the general taking the lead and shouted, “Your Flying Arrow Battalion has 6,000 archers, 2,000 soldiers with shields, and another 2,000 with spears. With all of your men fully armed and vigilant, how many hacks do you reckon they can take?” At his feet, the Samsara Knife was emanating transparent mist, which appeared to distort the light around it.
Formidable pressure fanned out.
A droplet of cold sweat trickled down from that general’s temple.
There was no one in the armies of the Western Qin that had not heard of the name and the legends of Lord Taibai, the poetry and martial arts whiz of Chang’an, was there?
Qiu Yin, the Broadsword Man, was also a renowned expert at the time. And his fame was more or less attributed to the Guanshan Pasture. Plus, Qiu Yin was an upright and heroic man. He never did anything outrageous or violated the rules. But the lord before them, on the contrary, was an unscrupulous man. He acted at his will. Out of some light offenses, he directly beheaded the son of Lord Zhenxi and the second prince. Even Huang Shengyi and his backup force had been killed by his broadsword.
Would a man like him be intimidated by the stateliness of the imperial army?
The Commander in Chief of the Flying Arrow Battalion would not believe that even if he had just been kicked in the head by a donkey.
“Yeah. How many strikes can the 10,000 selected soldiers withstand?”
“Or maybe three?”
At last, the general of the Flying Arrow Battalion took a deep breath and said to Li Mu with his fists cupped in respect, “Now that Lord Taibai has given the order, how dare I act otherwise? Spread my words, retreat now!”
As he raised a hand, the Flying Arrow Battalion swiftly made their retreat like the fall of tides.
Since Li Mu had another status— a lord of the Western Qin Empire, though just nominal— it was fairly reasonable to take his order as the excuse to withdraw the army at that point.
It was unnecessary to fight a doomed fight.
In the blink of an eye, all the forces besieging the Yue Mountain Faction were off the field.
Riding on the flying broadsword, Li Mu turned into a curved shot of light and leaped to the top of the Yue Mountain.
The defensive tactical deployment was lifted automatically.
Xu Yue, Head of the Yue Mountain Faction, Qiu Yin, Xu Sheng, and the others all came out to welcome him.
“I pay my tributes to Lord Taibai.”
“Third Brother, you got here really fast!”
“Haha, little bro, you compelled thousands of troops to retreat with one hack. Bravo!”
They all greeted Li Mu with enthusiasm.
All the members of the Yue Mountain Faction felt the load was finally off their mind.
That was the awe-inspiring reputation Li Mu earned by battling. To the Yue Mountain Faction, the attack was practically a catastrophe. But to Li Mu, it was just a little trouble that would be solved with his one strike. He could turn the tide at the last minute, prop up a toppling skyscraper, stood upright in the countercurrent, kill a Sage with one hack, and force enemies to retreat with a word…
That was the charisma and power of a genuine peerless talent.
Lines of disciples of the Yue Mountain Faction gazed up at Li Mu in awe and reverence.
“Brother Xu, what happened to you…” Seeing that Xu Sheng had lost his arms, Li Mu was shocked and infuriated.
Xu Sheng, the Sky-cracking Punch, spent all his life practicing the skills of using his fists. As his arms had been lost, how could he ever perform his punch art again?
“Well, it’s no big deal. Though my fists are gone, I still have two legs to practice.” Xu Sheng answered, looking quite spirited. He was a broad-minded man in the first place. Seeing that the dire danger in the Yue Mountain Faction had been removed, he was more pleased than anyone.
“Third Brother, I’m sorry I had to get you in this mess, too.” Qiu Yin apologized with a guilty look.
Now that the internal strife in the Guanshan Pasture was loomed by the shadows of the imperial army and the Imperial Executive Group, it was no longer a simply fight for the position of head of the Holy Clan. Whenever they contemplated the hidden agenda behind the scene, it sent a chill down their spines. Facing such a large vortex, even a real Sage could be engulfed if not careful enough.
“Second Brother, don’t mention it. I’m obliged to help my brothers out. Our sworn ceremony didn’t just tell us to share good times, did it?” Li Mu said with a serious look.
Soon, all the members of the Yue Mountain Faction lost themselves in celebrations.
Xu Sheng, still, cautioned, “It’s too early to celebrate. Today’s event is not as simple as it seemed to be. I’m afraid, the Guanshan Pasture and the royal force will make a comeback very soon. The real culprits pulling all the strings in the dark can’t just give up like that.”
Qiu Yin nodded and echoed, “Right. We’d better be prepared for it. Anyway, we can’t stay here any longer.”
At that remark, Li Mu asked, “What on earth has happened? If this is just internal strife within the Guanshan Pasture, why did the Executives and the imperial army come here as well?”
He had rushed there in a haste, so he had not had the time to figure it all out.
Qiu Yin recounted the whole thing to him and added, “A bunch of Extra-terrestrial Devils is running wild. Regretfully, we didn’t notice it before. Some devils have quietly descended among us and infiltrated many aspects. The situation is much worse than we expected.”
Hearing that explanation, Li Mu turned on his heels and yelled at the foot of the mountain, “Yuan Hou, go explore the surroundings!”
A long, crisp howl of an ape traveled to the mountaintop. Then, a jet of golden light streaked across the sky and shot towards the Flying Arrow Battalion that was beating a retreat.
It was not until that moment that Yuan Hou, the golden ape, got to make a presence. Li Mu had told the ape to stay at the foot of the mountain and help him on the way out after he saved the others. But to his surprise, he easily killed Huang Shengyi with his first strike and scared away all the other opponents. Thus, he needed no way out for the moment and decided to let the ape explore the place first.
However, the development of the case was way beyond Li Mu and the others’ expectations.
In less than an hour, the golden ape returned with injuries.
Needless for it to report anything, everyone knew what caused its injuries.
Sure enough, the Flying Arrow Battalion that had retreated came back again, along with the other six battalions of the imperial army.
Up in the void, the Flying Feather Battalion consisting of the best of the elites in the imperial army also made their entrance. Like a swarm of flying locusts, a total of 5,000 soldiers riding eagles and cladding armors headed forwards, surrounding three massive shuttles that were one hundred meters in length. On the shuttle in the front erected a huge flag with the pattern of a black nine-headed bird. It billowed in the wind, spreading an aura of solemnity, majesty, and callousness. It was the mark of the royal family of the Western Qin Empire. Only when some powerful men in the royal family went out on an expedition would people see that flag.
At the sight of that flag with that black nine-headed bird, many senior experts of the Yue Mountain Faction turned pale.
“A royal member has come to the battlefield himself. Seems that the fight won’t end until one party is killed.”
And that was not the end of it.
The sects, Huang’s forces, the members of the Guanshan Pasture, and the experts from the Imperial Executive Group and the Supervisory Department that had backed away once again flooded towards the Yue Mountain. But this time, their number had increased tenfold. Tides of experts charged to the gate from all directions. That scene was even more frightening than what they saw when Huang Shengyi and his men launched the attack before… Whether in terms of the enemies’ number or strength, it was indeed hopeless for Li Mu and the others to fend off.
The Yue Mountain Faction switched on the All-side Starlight Deployment at once to protect the gate.
The rumbles of the drawn-out military bugles, endless military drums resounded through the field.
Killing intent was spreading, seething.
Terrified, all the birds and beasts in the Yue Mountain area began to flee in droves.
In front of the main hall, numerous disciples of the Yue Mountain Faction revealed a hint of despair on their faces.
The upcoming fight on that scale was too overwhelming for any faction to handle even in its best times.
That had certainly surpassed the maximum limit Lord Taibai could take, too.
Because from the three massive shuttles three streams of Sage-leveled aura not less inferior to Huang Shengyi’s were pervading the air. Some black demonic mist was rising, casting nothing but eternal darkness to the piece of land like the dark clouds. The three shuttles represented the upsurge of the empire’s strength. More than one Sage was on the shuttles, and some devils were on board as well.
“Here goes the imperial edict: the Yue Mountain Faction has launched a rebellion. Only the death penalty can atone their sins. Not a thing should not be destroyed within its territory. Their gate has to be demolished and never appear in the world again.”
A hard-edged voice cold as the announcement of Death traveled from the shuttle in the lead and reverberated between the heavens and the earth.
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