Chapter 465 The Battle in the Night
The Black Forest at night was never peaceful.
Unpredictable hazards hid everywhere in the silent and ghostly darkness.
There were forest beasts that went hunting under cover of night, bloodsucking vines that hid among ordinary vines, acid swamps that looked like grass but were actually the homes of Ghost Nannies, and ferocious predators that wandered in the depths of the forest like phantoms.
Including all of the rumored corruptors, monsters, and magical beasts would give you a genuinely primal world with a variety of resources and species- the Black Forest.
Sixty kilometers to the north of Fire Throne was land owned by the Aba Beemen.
It was deep into the night, yet his place was still bustling with activity and a particular sort of urgency.
Squads of beeman soldiers holding poison-tipped spears and arrows beat their wings and moved between the trees. Many of them were also carrying in their hands the prey they had hunted. Most of them were ordinary forest creatures such as goats, wolves, and apes. Once in a while, one would also see berserk apes, Otyughs, and human mercenaries in their grasp.
Under ordinary circumstances, each beeman squad would employ fifteen beeman soldiers.
They would move through the fifteen kilometers of Black Forest around their den in a specific pattern, carefully and seriously searching for prey they could hunt. Every time they ran into a beast or other magical creature that had come out to hunt meant an inevitable battle.
It was precisely the terrifying offensive abilities of these prey that often ensured casualties in these beeman squads; almost none of the beeman squads returned unscathed. The worst battle saw only four beeman soldiers return. However, without exception, all of them returned with varying sizes of spoils.
The Aba Beemen's nest was constructed in a dense stretch of forest. It was a strange magical structure that resembled a bee's nest.
This place was also the Aba Queen's delivery room. It was the special place where she gave birth to new beemen.
Ordinary beemen had no right to enter the hive. Only specially selected servants could stay by the Queen's side, continually feeding her and taking care of the newly-spawned eggs.
The hatching cycle of a beeman was extremely short. An egg only required a short seven days to hatch into a beeman soldier. That was why an Aba bee nest could produce beeman soldiers at a breakneck pace as long as there was enough food.
According to the method by which an adept's strength was calculated, an ordinary beeman soldier only had 0.7 points of Strength. However, they couldn't be underestimated because of their feeble power. The danger of these creatures exponentially increased if they managed to rally some of their allies.
They had wings for flying and were skilled in the use of poisoned weapons. They could fire long ranged attacks with their bows and arrows while using their spears to dive down as a melee attack. These advantages stacked together and benefitted from their countless numbers. Once a tribe of Aba Beemen managed to gain a foothold in a territory, they would quickly rise to become the rulers of the nearby area.
That was why almost all other creatures in the vast Black Forest were on the Aba Beemen's hunting lists. The only exceptions were the powerful magical creatures that had tough hides, such as the brutelephants and the wyverns.
During the time Greem had been gone from Fire Throne, the uncontested Aba Beemen had increased their numbers at an explosive rate. Their unrestrained reproduction had undoubtedly threatened the forces around Fire Throne, which had barely just gathered together.
In a mere seven or eight days, Gargamel had already received news about the deaths of two outsider apprentices and a dozen mercenaries. For a moment, the fifteen kilometers around the Aba Beemen's nest was categorized by Fire Throne as a zone of extreme danger. The tower even established a strict ban going near the place.
The rise of an excessively powerful magical tribe around Fire Throne was not a good thing, no matter how you looked at it. Consequently, the tower restricted mercenaries and low-grade apprentices from getting close to the Aba Beemen's hunting area. They also released an internal extermination mission to send high-grade apprentices out to exterminate the rampant Aba Beemen.
An encounter had just reached its conclusion in a narrow mountain stream nearby.
A three-meter-long and three-hundred-kilogram heavy Flaming Tiger that had strayed from the pack had become the prey of a beeman hunting squad.
The dead flaming tiger lay on the ground without moving. Many short black arrows pinned its yellow body filled with red stripes. There were even two long spears embedded in its neck that had been snapped in half.
The Aba Beeman soldiers' strength might not be enough to kill a berserk flaming tiger, but the toxic poison on their weapons could. This unfortunate flaming tiger had been poisoned to death!
However, the flaming tiger's strong fireballs had still tremendously damaged the beeman hunting squad. Four beeman soldiers had been blown to bits when they failed to avoid the fireballs. Another three had died to the flaming tiger's jaws and tail when they had dived at it.
The remaining eight beeman soldiers had all received varying degrees of fire damage. However, this didn't prevent them from happily cutting up the flaming tiger's body to take its meat back with them.
This kind of magical creature meat, filled with elementium aura, was an exceptionally nutritious food. It was the favorite food of the Aba Queen.
Just as they gathered around the tiger's corpse and busy at work, a voice rang out from the forest nearby. A humanoid creature cloaked in thick black robes appeared within the vision of the soldiers.
Not only was this newcomer a human, but they were also a human caster that the Queen most liked to feast on!
That was because the only ones that dared to walk through this forest in black robes were those so-called apprentice adepts.
The beeman soldiers couldn't help but be happy.
Weng, weng, weng!
The buzzing sound of their wings began to spread out throughout the forest.
The eight beeman soldiers tossed away the bloody flesh in their hands, picked up their spears, and instantly took to the skies. A few of them spread out to avoid possible magic attacks from the human apprentice. They took cover behind thick branches and vines and quickly closed in on the black-robed individual.
What puzzled them was the fact that the human hadn't tried to run. Instead, they raised their head. A pair of pale green eyes shone from beneath the shadows of the hood, staring coldly at the beemen.
Even though they could tell something was off, the beeman soldiers still initiated their attack according to their usual strategy.
The first wave of attacks was naturally the mid-ranged poison arrows.
Phew! Phew! Phew!
Eight poisoned arrows shot through the space between the trees and barraged the human like a swarm of locusts.
Surprisingly enough, the enemy had no intention of dodging. They didn't even try to cast any defensive spells. They just stood there and allowed the poison arrows to hit against their body. Judging from the dull sound of the poisoned arrows hitting their target, the human wasn't wearing any metallic armor beneath their robes.
The eight beeman soldiers became even more excited. They quickly closed-in while firing even more arrows at the apprentice. When they were within ten steps of the hooded figure, they tossed aside their bows and charged at the enemy with forked spears in hand.
The black-robed human suddenly unleashed a strange bug's screech when all eight spears dug into their body. The human's body exploded into a sky full of black beetles, instantly drowning the eight beeman soldiers in a terrifying tide of insects.
It was the first time the beeman soldiers had ever faced such a terrifying retaliation. They screamed and tried to get back on their feet, but they were covered in a layer of black beetles. Their faces, heads, bodies, feet, and even their semi-translucent wings were crawling with these strange insects.
What frightened them more was that strange chattering sound of silkworms feasting on mulberry leaves, and the intense pain from every part of their body.
A few stronger beemen barely managed to fly by flapping their wings. However, their vision was obscured, causing them to fall to the ground after crashing into branches.
The beeman soldiers struggled and frantically fought back. Many black, bean-sized beetles were crushed into a paste or reduced to pools of black liquid by poison. However, their remaining numbers were still enough to kill these eight unfortunate victims with no magical abilities.
Soon, the forest regained its peace.
Only chilling crunching sound remained in the silent Black Forest.
A short moment later, the black beetles gathered together after their feast. They once again reformed into the appearance of Billis.
The apprentice adept that had just experienced glorious victory in his first battle stood in the pool of blood on the ground. He silently savored the comfortable feeling of sweet blood coursing through his body.
The Aba Beemen were a type of magical creatures, but their appearances were a combination of elves and bees. They were humanoid magical creatures. In the past, Billis' personality would never have allowed him to conduct such a cruel act as devouring the enemy alive.
However, after he had assimilated the Queen Bug, all of this seemed to be a matter of fact for him. He was indifferent to it all!
This place is the world of my goals!
Greem had always suppressed Billis' violent and bloodthirsty nature after his successful assimilation. Even though Billis had enjoyed plenty of snacks in secret before this, those weak humans couldn't provide him with much energy needed for evolution.
In comparison, the magical creatures soaked in elementium power were the most suitable food for him!
Those sweet and delicious human apprentices were also walking delicacies. However, Master Greem had given him strict orders. He was not to eat adepts or apprentices without permission. That was why Billis had to suppress his impulse to hunt in the tower. He followed his master's guidance and came here to look for the Aba Beemen.
Once he had finished eating, Billis pushed into the depths of the forest with heavy and shambling footsteps. A swarm of bugs followed closely behind him like loyal hunting hounds, sweeping the bits and pieces of flesh left on the ground along with them.
Billis had only barely completed the evolution of his body of bugs. He now possessed an immortal body of bugs, but he had yet to cultivate a single combat beetle. His current self was undoubtedly frail. He could only turn around and run if he ran into those powerful magical creature leaders.
That was why it was time for him to find a place to create his bug's nest!