Chapter 295: Undercurrents
The inky veil of night shrouded the entire mountain valley. Spring had arrived and the fragrance of flowers was still intoxicating, even at night.
In the quiet night, the low buzzing sound of insects accompanied the latent danger. Teams of mercenaries were stationed in every corner of the mithril mine in the mountain valley. The seemingly calm space was filled with prudence and alertness.
A group of black-armored people slowly crept through the thick bushes like shadows in the night, bringing with them a creepy, sinister atmosphere. Dark grand magus Edwin drifted above them in the air, guiding the way. Three hundred Death Guards followed closely behind without making a sound, similar to wraiths.
Two thousand mercenaries of the Cairo mercenary band followed behind the three hundred Death Guards under Laureton’s leadership. They slowly approached the mithril mine in the mountain valley. A mix of a dozen or so small forces were behind the Cairo mercenary band. There were probably more than a thousand experts wearing mercenary outfits of various colors.
Even though the three great powers had gathered to guard the the mithril mine, they still needed to leave members behind to guard their base. That was why they had only dispatched roughly a thousand mercenaries total. This number was only a third of Laureton’s two thousand elite mercenaries, the Calamity Church’s three hundred Death Guards, and the thousand plus experts from a dozen small forces.
A black mass of gas slowly suffused through the air as dark grand magus Edwin released a dark spell. A faint layer of mist suddenly shrouded the moonlit area in front of the mountain valley, as if all the moisture in the night had condensed together.
The originally buzzing sounds of the insects gradually died down for an unknown reason. The House of Menlo’s wind archmage Arthur had been resting with his eyes closed and seemed to sense the abnormal movement. Opening his eyes to scan the mountain valley, he muttered to himself, “What’s going on? Why did the sounds of the insects stop?!”
The voice of the orc warrior Caloric echoed from the tent to Arthur’s left, “Hey, Arthur, it’s late already. Hurry up and get some rest.”
“I feel like something’s not right. I’m going out to take a look.” Arthur mumbled before exiting his tent. He slowly floated up using the levitation skill and looked out towards the area beyond the valley. “Hmm! Why is it all fogged up?” Arthur asked himself and drifted out of the mountain valley.
There were all sorts of tents scattered around the mountain valley, and some energetic mercenaries patrolling between them. These people immediately welcomed Arthur when they saw him drifting in the sky. Several mercenaries from the Rainbow Sickle joked in a light tone, “This fellow can’t sleep at night, could it be he’s gone out to find some fun? Heh heh, this makes sense. It sucks being assigned to this kind of place.”
“Leave him be. We only need to worry about our shift.” Another mercenary promptly responded.
“Shush!” Edwin, approaching from this side, suddenly let out a light cry. He made a gesture to the Death Guards behind him. The shadowy advancing Death Guards quickly crouched down, hiding in the bushes without revealing a single sign of life.
Laureton’s eyes were sharp as he caught Edwin’s action. He immediately waved his hand towards the back. A lineup, as long and twisted as a dragon, instantly quieted down to slight breathing. These people were quite far from Arthur, so their slight breathing wasn’t heard.
Arthur flew out of the mountain valley, frowning as he looked out into the distance. However, he couldn’t find anything unusual. He stayed for a while, muttering a few words before returning to the mountain valley.
At this moment, the positions, according to the distance from far to near, relative to Laureton’s group were: the Rainbow Sickle mercenary band, the House of Menlo, and the Katar orc tribe. An orc warrior guarding outside the Katar orc tribe’s area was abruptly jolted by an ear-piercing whistle. After he reacted, he discovered an arrow nailed into the large tree next to him. A letter was tied to the still trembling tail of the arrow.
Adam’s House of Menlo was next. The two guards here were similarly snapped awake by an arrow with a letter tied to it. Lastly, it was the Rainbow Sickles’ turn. They were right in front of the mithril mine and also received a letter tied to a still shaking arrow.
At that moment, the leaders of the three great powers were jolted awake from their various states. Holding the letters in hand, they urgently summoned their troops and woke up all of the soundly sleeping mercenaries. Everyone rushed at top speed to the mithril mine in the mountain valley.
After sending out three warning letters using his speedy hang gliding techniques, Han Shuo once again soundlessly returned to his hiding place near the mithril mine in the mountain valley. All of the explosives had been planted beforehand. Han Shuo quietly and coldly observed every change within the valley through his three yin demons, waiting for a tragic battle to break out.
There were more than a thousand mercenaries in the alliance stationed at the mithril mine. Once Laureton destroyed this army, the three powers would be hard pressed to save the day even if they joined hands together. Last time in the mountain valley, the three great powers had plotted against Laureton and earned his undying hatred. He would show them no mercy this time. It’d be their turn to bear brutal revenge once Laureton slaughtered the experts guarding the mithril mine.
As the three other leaders had a firm standing in the Valley of Sunshine, none of them were stupid. They naturally understood this truth and would rather believe the letters in their hands than not. The three sent out experts to contact each other, mobilizing most of their remaining forces at the bases to rush towards the mithril mine at top speed.
Time passed quietly at the mithril mine. The original alertness of the mercenary guards slowly drifted away. They began to yawn one by one, their mental state reaching its lowest point.
Edwin was currently hiding outside the mountain valley with Laureton next to him. He observed the mountain valley with a sinister expression on his face. He suddenly threw a glance at Laureton and said, “We can make our move now.”
His eyes flashed with killing intent and his bald head seemed to be emitting a cold light, Laureton nodded and said in a low tone, “Our brothers died in this mountain valley last time. This time, I intend to make them pay that back a dozen, a hundred times over. Chief Hagen, are your men ready?”
“Rest assured Chief Laureton. We have long since been ready for a split of this mithril mine.” Knowing their power wasn’t a match for any of the four great powers, the ten small forces had quickly gathered into an alliance. Hagen of the Raging Flame mercenary band was this alliance’s spokesperson.
“Very good! Not just this mithril mine, even the territories of these three powers are yours to split among yourselves as long as you help me take them down. The Cairo mercenary band will still only occupy the Valley of Sunshine. I hope you guys won’t disappoint me!” Laureton spoke out so readily while laughing coldly in his heart.
“Rest assured. We know what to do!” Hagen let out a cunning chuckle, expressing that he completely understood what Laureton meant.
“Alright, no need for nonsense. Just be careful. I will take advantage of the fog around the mountain valley to get in. Don’t make any noise once you’re inside. It’s best to let them die in their sleep!” Edwin impatiently blurted out, not concealing the arrogance on his face.
The Calamity Church was a notoriously tough character to chew in the Profound Continent. Except for the Church of Light, very few powers could compete on even ground with them. Even Laureton wasn’t anything much in Edwin’s eyes. Of course, a chief of some small mercenary band wouldn’t enter his eyes. That was why Edwin didn’t show them sincerity and politeness like he had with Han Shuo.
The small forces naturally didn’t dare to provoke Edwin upon learning of his identity. Just the sinister atmosphere from the three hundred Death Guards alone was enough to terrify them and send their hearts palpitating. They had long since heard that the Calamity Church was brutal and ruthless, treating lives like weeds. They all turned into yes-men in response to Edwin’s words upon seeing his impatient expression.
Edwin was feeling a little bit smug upon seeing these peoples’ fear. Extremely comfortable as he bathed in the feeling of superiority, Edwin softly humphed with arrogance before swinging his arm to order a tall, slim Death Guard at the front, “Forward, kill them all!”
The Death Guard was a group of people who worshipped the Evil God. They were the most extreme of fanatics who offered all of their beliefs and spirits to the Evil God. They carried with them the will of the Evil God and terrifying power as they slaughtered the enemies of the Calamity Church all over the Profound Continent. They were a group of inhuman executioners. Having been granted certain powers after their sacrifices to the Evil God, the Death Guards easily possessed the ability to dominate the life and death of others.
The gray pupils of this Death Guard filled with a fanatical excitement like Laureton going berserk thrice over after hearing Edwin’s commands. His teeth tightly gritted, the Death Guard issued a horrifying sound like he was chewing on beast bones. His action was agile as he led the three hundred Death Guards rushing into the mountain valley under the cloak of mist.
Florida, Adam Menlo, and Katar were also leading the three great powers and hurrying to the mountain valley. A fire burning in their hearts, the three constantly issued orders to urge their men forward, afraid that they wouldn’t arrive in time.