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Boom boom boom!
The earth shook, and the entire forest trembled in response. All-encompa.s.sing waves of death-gas swept forward, as if they were about to swallow up the sky and the earth.
As the waves of death-gas rolled in, flashes of greyish-white shadows shot forward quickly. Within them, one could vaguely see that black lights were floating. These lights were beast spirits, whose skills were comparable to those of a Grade Seven Sovereign.
Upon witnessing this scene, the expressions of Mu Chen, Han Shan, Nine Nether and the rest darkened. They had clearly fallen into a trap!
The areas lying in those two directions were originally supposed to be controlled by the Golden Lion Clan and the Sirius Clan, but their power and rule had clearly been usurped, since all of the beast spirits were currently surging towards Mu Chen and the rest! Han Shan's expression was stormy, the ice in his glare nearly taking solid shape! Right at that moment, he hated the Sirius Clan to the core.
The few masters of the Demonic Rhino Clan also turned pale, as they were all at a complete loss! If such a huge herd of beast spirits stormed towards them, none of them would survive!
"Dispose of the beast spirits in front of you!" While Han Shan and the rest were looking on grimly, Mu Chen suddenly commanded in a low voice.
At this moment, their first priority must be to eliminate all of the beast spirits in front of them. If not, even if they decided to retreat later, they would be delayed, thus allowing the herd of beast spirits to catch up to them!
Hearing his command, Han Shan, Nine Nether, and the rest immediately returned to their senses, then released their inner spiritual energy explosively. Waves of violent attacks struck the beast spirits.
With an icy gaze, Mu Chen took the Grade Seven beast spirit's harsh battering on his chest. Then, as quick as lightning, his palm pressed on its temple, a violent energy surging out.
The Grade Seven beast spirit's skull shattered in response. Its body immediately went rigid, then collapsed. After Mu Chen had speedily disposed of the two Grade Seven beast spirits in front of him, he immediately helped Nine Nether and the rest dispose of the six Grade Seven beast spirits.
By the time that they had eliminated all of the Grade Seven beast spirits, the flood of death-gas had gotten much closer. They could already see the ferocious but hollow expressions of those beast spirits. Han Shan didn't care that his s.h.i.+rt was badly torn from his fights with the Grade Seven beast spirits, he just watched the approaching herd of beast spirits with a dark look on his face.
"Now, what should we do?" Nine Nether asked in a subdued voice. The herd of beast spirits was too big. With such small numbers, they couldn't possibly stop them. They should retreat, while they still had a chance!
Han Shan grinded his teeth. If they retreated, they would be giving up on attaining the treasures of the Treasure Beast. After having prepared for this for such a long time, he was extremely reluctant to do so.
"Haha, Han Shan, it seems you are still unwilling to give up?" Just as Han Shan was hesitating, mocking laughter rang out from a distance.
Hearing this laughter, the expressions of Mu Chen and the rest changed. Raising their heads, their sharp gazes landed on a giant tree in the distance, where silhouettes had materialized. These silhouettes belonged to Golden Break of the Golden Lion Clan and Huo Yang of the Sirius Clan, who were accompanied by their followers.
The minute Han Shan saw Huo Yang emerge, his eyes became bloodshot and vicious currents roiled beneath the surface of his face, giving him a ferocious expression Seeing Han Shan's expression, Huo Yang merely smiled faintly and said, "Han Brother, don't be like this. Cooperation requires mutual consent. If you trust people so easily, you will be taken advantage of. So, I hope that you take this as a lesson that you will always remember."
Han Shan took a deep breath, and his expression gradually calmed. But, the glare he directed at Huo Yang became even more poisonous, and he asked in a low voice, "I granted you many benefits, so why did you stab me in the back?"
Huo Yang smiled. "Indeed, you granted me a lot of benefits, but unfortunately, I like to work for the party with the greater success rate, naturally."
His words revealed that he clearly didn't think that Han Shan's side could beat the Golden Lion Clan. So, upon being offered the same conditions from them, he chose to help the Golden Lion Clan doublecross Han Shan and the rest.
With a vicious look in his eye, Han Shan smiled darkly and said, "Good, I'll remember this. You better pray you don't fall into my hands."
Seeing Han Shan's ferocious appearance, Huo Yang felt a chill creeping into his heart. But, outwardly, he just gave a cold smile and said, "Well you'd have to escape with your life first."
While they were talking, Golden Break of the Golden Lion Clan had been watching them with a huge grin, clearly sure of his victory. He looked at Han Shan like he was looking at a loser.
"Why aren't those beast spirits attacking them?" Beside Han Shan, Nine Nether suddenly asked, a slight furrow of her beautiful brow.
Only after hearing her words did the rest of them suddenly realize that those fellows were right in front of the beast spirits, but the beast spirits merely ignored them, madly rus.h.i.+ng towards their group instead!
Mu Chen was staring intently at Golden Break and the rest, when he suddenly paused. He had sensed a faint layer of grey membrane surrounding them, which was radiating an odd fluctuating movement and giving off the smell of death-gas!
"They've probably prepared some special thing that would enable the death-gas to surround their bodies. Those beast spirits don't have eyes, but they can sense the presence of living things, as well as death-gas. So, when they used death-gas to mask their bodies, they could blend in among the beast spirits without being noticed," Mu Chen said slowly.
No wonder Huo Yang thought Han Shan didn't have much chance of success, as it turns out that the Golden Lion Clan had prepared thoroughly, even setting a trap for Han Shan!
"Those ba*tards." Han Shan naturally thought of this, too, and his expression darkened even more.
"Han Shan, brother." The masters of the Demonic Rhino Clan looked at Han Shan. The herd of beast spirits were getting closer, and if they didn't retreat now, they would not get a chance to later on.
With a grim expression, Han Shan gritted his teeth, then raised his hand to signal a retreat. While the treasure of the Treasure Beast was indeed valuable, he could only enjoy it if he stayed alive! Looking at the current situation, he felt some guilt towards Mu Chen and the rest. After all, they had endured a long and arduous journey, and even before reaching the place where the Treasure Beast fell, they were driven out, forced to escape with their tails tucked between their legs!
However, just as Han Shan had decided to command a retreat, Mu Chen suddenly spoke. Everybody looked at Mu Chen in shock. If they didn't leave now, they would be in dire straits later.
Could Mu Chen really not let go of the treasure of the Treasure Beast?
Faced with their stunned expressions, Mu Chen only smiled faintly and said, "I think I can try to mask our presence from the beast spirits."
They were all shocked. Even Nine Nether was a bit doubtful.
Looking at the nonplussed expressions of those around him, Mu Chen smiled. "The method those fellows used to hide from the beast spirits has inspired me. If these beast spirits can only sense the difference between living things and death-gas, their senses must be very poor. As such, as long as we mask the living gas of our bodies, they will treat us as non-living beings."
Han Shan was stunned by this logic. "While the beast spirits have extremely poor senses, they are extremely sensitive to living gas! Even just a bit of it would turn them into hungry wolves!"
He clearly didn't quite believe that Mu Chen had the ability to mask their living gas. Mu Chen didn't bother replying, but with a light flick of his fingers, flashed his spiritual seals rapidly. As they took shape around him, they quickly blended into the surroundings, creating ripples in the air.
Nine Nether's beautiful eyes flashed as she watched this scene.
Boom boom boom!
Just as the spiritual seals quickly blended into the air, the shaking of the earth became more violent, and the huge beast spirit let loose a ma.s.sive howl from a distance away, which carried with it waves of death-gas.
The masters of the Demonic Rhino Clan broke out in cold sweats, their faces pale with terror upon hearing the aggressive roar. They kept looking at Han Shan, as the minute he showed any intention to retreat, they would also retreat immediately!
But Han Shan was staring intently at Mu Chen. Finally, he gritted his teeth violently and said, "I'm relying on you, Mu Brother."
He was also unwilling to leave. That fact, coupled with his bone-deep hatred for the Sirius Clan, made him even more loathe to be driven off, especially if there were any alternatives.
He knew that Mu Chen was not impetuous. Plus, since Mu Chen could remain so calm and self-possessed, he must have some degree of confidence. This made Han Shan willing to take a gamble on him.
Mu Chen closed both eyes, without replying. The spiritual seals forming at his fingertips gradually increased in strength.
"This Han Shan is apparently suicidal!"
From a distant treetop, Golden Break couldn't help mocking them, especially when he saw that Han Shan and the rest were unwilling to retreat. This made him think that Han Shan was just reluctant to give up on his goal of attaining the Treasure Beast's treasure.
"If he wants the treasure so much, he can just be buried here with it!" Golden Break said with a wide grin, baring his teeth, which gave him a ferocious look.
Boom boom boom!
The flood of beast spirits roared towards them, and the death-gas a.s.saulted their senses. Nine Nether and the rest watched the rapidly approaching death-gas current with dead eyes.
When the distance between them had dwindled to a hundred fathoms and the smell of death was a.s.saulting their senses, causing the masters of the Demonic Rhino Clan to sink into despair, Mu Chen's slightly squinted eyes finally opened abruptly. Then, his bright black irises twinkled.
The surrounding air suddenly gave a violent tremor, and Han Shan and the rest saw flashes of spiritual energy light runes quickly spreading across the void in front of them. It then engulfed them all within it!
The silhouette cast by the spiritual energy light runes looked somewhat like a grey coffin. This spiritual array didn't seem to have a strong attacking power, but once it took shape, Han Shan and the rest could clearly feel the death-gas emanating into the s.p.a.ce around them, chilling them to the bone.
By the time the coffin spiritual array had taken shape, the flood of beast spirits had finally reached them. But, upon reaching the area in which Mu Chen and the rest were immediately within, the flood automatically parted around them!
The ma.s.sive flood of death-gas brushed past them, making their knees shake in terror, but they couldn't care less about their shaking knees, as they simply watched the flood of beast spirits parting around them! Their eyes were wide with shock!
The beast spirits, which were emanating waves of death-gas, actually brushed past us, as if we were non-living beings!
At this moment, even someone as placid as Han Shan couldn't resist leaping for joy. As they all went wild with joy, in the distant treetops, the mocking expressions of Golden Break, Huo Yang, and the rest had gradually darkened.
Their malicious gazes looked past Han Shan and the rest, directly locking onto Mu Chen. Clearly, they sensed that the seemingly unremarkable Grade Six Sovereign was the root cause for failure of their trap.