Book 14, Fiend – Chapter 21, Chaos
The corridor up ahead was filled with that thick pink fog, completely hiding what was ahead of them.
The earthen robe covering Linley was only covering most of his body. Right now, however, Linley’s hands were also covered with an earth-yellow membrane. His neck and even his face were all covered with a layer of this earth-yellow membrane as well.
This was all part of his ‘Pulseguard Armor’.
The only place that was revealed was his eyes.
Not just Linley. After having suffered that ambush of arrows, all of the Gods in Linley’s squad understood that when those dense arrows were shot out, they covered the entire area. In addition, they moved so quickly that there was no time to react at all.
Therefore, the only option was to protect the entire body!
Head, arms, legs, neck…the entire body had to be protected!
Although the squad had over eighty people, everyone crept forward silently through the corridor, not making any sound at all. The only sound which could occasionally be heard was Crompton’s irritating bark of, “Forward, faster!” But his barks only echoed in the corridor, making the entire castle seem all the more deathly quiet.
“Ahhh!” Many miserable cries rang out together, while at the same time, from afar, the sound of angry shouts and cursing could be heard.
Linley’s squad couldn’t help but pause in their advance.
“Yet another squad has suffered an ambush.” All of them understood.
“So this was the true purpose of the master of the castle releasing this poison fog.” Linley now understood. Because the pink fog was everywhere, Linley and the others didn’t dare to use their divine sense to search. After all, if the pink mist so much as slightly contaminated a soul, it would be affected.
Even if they didn’t go crazy, their performance in battle would decrease.
Linley’s group didn’t dare to use their divine sense, and the enemies didn’t either. However, the enemies were very familiar with this castle’s layout, and it was possible they were lying in wait within certain hidden areas. This caused Linley’s side to be at an absolute disadvantage.
“Those of you up front, hurry up!” A loud rebuking shout from a Fiend in the rear. “What’s going on with all of you guys? So frightened that your legs have gone soft?”
The group of people at the front of the squad were extremely furious. The front of the squad was the most dangerous place, and they were supposed to hurry up? Wasn’t this forcing them to their deaths? But they didn’t dare to disobey these Fiends. After all, the Fiends on this mission were all Highgods.
“Time for a turn!”
The squad arrived at a turn in the corridor, and they all followed it towards a different corridor.
Hidden in the darkness, ten gold-robed guards were holding their bows at the ready.
“About time. They’ve already rounded the turn!” The captain of the gold-robed guards said softly. “Everyone, prepare to attack!”
“Got it, captain.” The eyes of the gold-robed guards were all shining. They held their bows at the ready, five arrows in their hands. They would shoot out five arrows each time. To these gold-robed guards, although their accuracy would be impacted, however…
They were firing blindly to begin with, because the corridors were straight. All they had to do, therefore, was fire in straight lines.
“You lot really are wasteful.” The captain was only using a single arrow.
“Whoever gets hit by your arrow, captain, will definitely die.”
The captain laughed calmly.
Actually, the intelligence reports of the Fiend Castle weren’t completely accurate. Indeed, Moon Lake Castle did have the ‘black-robed guards’ and the ‘gold-robed guards’, two different levels of guards, and all of the black-robed guards were fairly powerful Highgods, true. But the gold-robed guards…
They weren’t all Gods.
To be more specific, the vast majority of them were Gods, while a very small number of them were Highgods. They didn’t become black-robed guards because they had been sent to be the team captains of the gold-robed guards.
The gold-robed guards, in turn, only had two levels; the ordinary guard members, and the team captains. Generally speaking, the team captains would listen to the orders of the black-robed guards. Ten black-robed guards were responsible for managing all of the gold-robed guards. The captain of the team of gold-robed guards which was lying in ambush for Linley’s squad was a Highgod!
However, he was one who had become a Deity through fusing with a divine spark.
“After I open up the screening wall, listen for my signal, then immediately fire!”
“Swish!” Very suddenly, in the darkness, a stone wall suddenly opened as fast as lightning, revealing the ten gold-robed guards behind.
But because of the pink fog’s concealment, Linley’s squad had no idea…that at the end of their corridor, there were ten gold-robed guards.
The gold-robed guards stared coldly at the pink mist in front of them.
“Fire!” The captain ordered with his divine sense to all of them simultaneously. Because he was the one who had opened the stone wall, he was the last one to fire.
“Swish!” “Swish!” “Swish!” ….
Instantly, like a rainstorm, forty six arrows covered every part of the corridor. In the instant after they finished firing, the stone wall immediately closed shut once more. From the outside, nobody would be able to tell that this stone wall was movable.
Linley’s squad was currently making their way forward carefully.
Linley was staring forward carefully, but suddenly, Linley’s pupils shrank and his face changed…
The dense rain of arrows instantly tore through the air, mercilessly shooting down upon Linley and the others in front, or through the cracks to the people in the rear. These arrows were simply too fast, and by the time Linley and the others saw the arrows, there was only a distance of a few dozen meters.
A few dozen meters distance simply wasn’t enough for Linley and the others to react and dodge in time.
In that short moment, Linley was only able to make a single movement. He stretched out his arms, striving to stand in front of Delia and use his body to completely block her from the arrows.
Although Linley wasn’t the very first person in front, two arrows landed on his body. The arrows struck Linley like a thunderbolt, but the earthen robe on Linley’s body was made of countless ripples of divine power, instantly and completely counteracting the penetrative power of the arrows.
Bebe was struck by an arrow as well.
“Clang!” A metallic ringing sound could be heard, and the arrowhead actually exploded and shattered as the arrow fell to the floor.
“Too weak.” Bebe laughed delighted.
“We’re all fine.” Linley immediately could tell that Delia and Bebe were both safe. He couldn’t help but feel relieved.
But then, Linley’s face suddenly changed. In his line of sight, he suddenly saw from afar a terrifying arrow!
“There’s one more arrow coming!”
This was the arrow which had been fired last!
But this was also the most terrifying arrow, the arrow of a Highgod! The Godslayer Arrow glimmered with a sinister black light as it pierced through space, causing space to ripple. It gave Linley no chance to react at all as it collided directly with Linley’s chest.
The penetrative power of this arrow was simply too great. Although those countless ripples of divine force wildly attempted to reduce its penetrative power, in the end, the arrow just barely broke through.
“Ah!” Linley fell to one knee on the ground, powerless.
Bebe, who had been in the process of collecting corpses nearby, suddenly turned, his face changed. “Boss!” Delia, who had just been letting out a sigh of relief, was shocked as well.
“Hmph, he finally died?” At the back of the squad, the bald Crompton had been watching Linley this entire time. When he saw Linley fall to one knee, a hint of a smile appeared on his face. “I didn’t kill you. Someone else killed you. Haha…”
He was extremely delighted.
The arrow itself wasn’t terrifying. What was truly terrifying was the poison which the arrowhead had been dipped in.
A gray energy stream instantly attacked Linley’s brain, viciously piercing towards Linley’s soul!
It struck violently against that translucent membrane. The translucent scaled membrane was a soul-protecting Sovereign artifact. Aside from the breach in it, the other parts of it were as good as when it was undamaged. More than half of the energy of that gray energy stream dissipated upon colliding with it.
The remaining gray energy, as though it had a mind of its own which knew that the translucent membrane was hard to deal with, suddenly completely split apart, transforming into gray specks of light which covered the entire translucent membrane. Naturally, that included the breach. And that breach…was sealed by Linley using his spiritual energy into a ‘bandage’.
“What is this?” Linley was shocked. He had the feeling that the gray dots had a mind!
Instantly, all of the gray dots, as though having discovered that the ‘bandage’ was weak, immediately began to wildly attack the ‘bandage’. The remaining part of the energy all flowed towards the breach, entering Linley’s sea of consciousness.
At this moment…
The many gray dots divided into three. These three weaker surges of gray energy attacked Linley’s divine spark, his wind-style divine clone, and his original body.
“It is actually attacking all of my souls at once!” Linley was greatly shocked.
But although he was shocked, Linley still controlled the spiritual energy in his sea of consciousness, creating a Pulseguard Defense! A large amount of spiritual energy ripples clashed with the gray dots of light. Moments later, all of the gray dots had been extinguished, while half of Linley’s spiritual energy had been used up as well.
“That really was dangerous.”
Only now did Linley let out a sigh of relief.
“Linley! Linley!” Delia and Bebe were both by his side, calling out to him softly.
Although it took a fairly long time to describe the soul poison entering his body, it actually only happened over the course of one or two seconds, after which Linley opened his eyes.
“I’m fine.” Linley revealed a hint of a smile towards them.
Only now did Delia and Bebe let out sighs of relief. Linley, however, was feeling rather somber. “That poison really is frightening. No wonder the staff member at Redbud Castle had said that this Godslayer Arrow is capable of killing almost any God. Too bizarre, too frightening.”
As Linley saw it, this Godslayer Arrow’s poison had a will of its own.
Although it didn’t have the capacity to actually think, it had the ability to ‘avoid strong points and seek out weak points’.
“However, to this poison, the ‘soul’ has a powerful draw to it.” Linley knew this because if the poison was capable of thought, it would have focused its efforts on destroying a single soul. But the poison didn’t; instead, it attacked Linley’s three souls at the same time!”
“He didn’t die?” Crompton, at the back of the squad, saw Linley stand up again. He couldn’t help but stare with wide eyes, and then his face turned savage. “Hmph. He survived yet again. I want to see how many more times he will survive. Even if you managed to survive the soul attack of the Godslayer Arrow, I imagine you must have used up almost all of your spiritual power.”
“Hurry up!” Crompton bellowed yet again.
This time, ten or so people had died in the squad. After having been ambushed twice, only sixty Gods were left. Linley’s group of three were now at the very front of the squad.
“Boss, we can’t let this continue.” Bebe began to worry.
“I know.” Linley understood this as well.
Who knew what other tricks the enemies were planning? If they were continuously in this sort of situation where they could only play defense, sooner or later, when their defense was no longer able to handle it, they would be finished.
“We’re at the third floor!” Linley’s group slowly began to make their way down the stairs.
“Everyone, be careful.” A God called out. “The third floor is definitely going to be even more dangerous than the second floor!”
In a large, empty room on the third floor of the castle, ten gold-robed guards entered from above through a secret passageway.
“Our master really has gone wild this time. He has even brought out the Deathgod Golems.” The gold-robed guards were very excited.
“But we only have twenty of these Deathgod Golems in total. Our squad is very lucky to have even one of them.”
The gold-robed captain laughed calmly. “Eric [Ai’rui], you can be the one to control the Deathgod Golem we have been given. I don’t need it!” The gold-robed captain was a Highgod, after all. Although the Deathgod Golem was powerful, it was only on par with him.
The third floor was extremely large, and the layout of the castle was so chaotic that as one walked, one might even forget which road they were traveling on. They could only choose to walk around randomly.
“We can’t let this continue!” Linley walked slowly, but up ahead was that perpetual pink mist. Nobody knew what would appear from up ahead.
“Halt!” An explosive shout rang out.
Chaotic sounds suddenly could be heard from everywhere in the castle, and the sixty-plus people in Linley’s squad all were stunned.
A look of delight appeared on Linley’s face.
Linley immediately spread out his divine sense to cover the forty or fifty people towards the front. “Brothers, if this continues, we’re all going to die. Let’s all flee together and move separately. That way, we won’t be caught and killed in one fell swoop by the people of the castle!”
“Brothers, flee!” Linley suddenly called out in a loud voice.
In virtually the same moment, all of the Gods, as though having been trained together, simultaneously scurried towards the nearby rooms, or deeper into the mist, or into the nearby passageways…
In the blink of an eye!
More than sixty Gods had all run off!
Crompton’s group of three Fiends were stupefied.
“We…who should we chase?” Crompton turned to look at the two Fiends next to him.
“Chase my ass!” A Fiend cursed softly.