GDK 659: Taking Charge
Han Shuo was caught off guard and in an instant, felt his lips fill with warmth and fragrance. Donna was incredibly fervent and had no resemblance to her usual solemn air.
Drawing connection with Donna shouting in desperation just a moment earlier, Han Shuo understood that Donna must have taken him as someone else in her hallucination, explaining her misbehavior.
Han Shuo did not indulge in being passionately canoodled by Donna as he clearly understood that her soul would grow increasingly unstable the longer she did so. If this trend were allowed to continue, Donna could end up in a disastrous state.
The detrimental effects of these hallucinations actually had no connection with a person's strength. The hallucination merely reproduced the scene that had gnawed at the person's mind - sore points that were buried deep within one's heart but not overcome. It would make the victim fall deeper and deeper into the abyss of despondency before they finally completely lost their mind.
Given Donna's performance, her mind was likely being perturbed by a past relationship that was deeply etched in her memory. She ought to be hallucinating about it and had mistaken Han Shuo as that person who she couldn't part with - thus her rather ludicrous actions.
After being startled for a short moment, Han Shuo soon came to his senses. He maintained the same posture and did not resist Donna's forceful, hot-blooded kissing. Han Shuo slowly raised his hand to the back of her head and suddenly gave it a pat, turning her unconscious.
Before her well-rounded body fell to the ground, Han Shuo held her by her soft waist. Without being distracted by any fanciful thoughts, Han Shuo identified the direction and whisked Donna away from the formation.
As soon as they escaped the formation, Han Shuo saw Li Wei, Bolten, and the others all looking at him with rather perplexed and bewildered eyes.
Although Han Shuo had knocked all of them out in order, as Han Shuo did not use his demonic yuan, and since these people were lowgods with extraordinary strengths, they managed to regain consciousness soon after they escaped from the influence of the formation. Having just woken up, these people were still somewhat at a loss. They couldn't tell if they were still hallucinating momentarily.
But when they saw Han Shuo carrying Donna by her slender waist away from that terrifying formation, some clarity was restored to their perplexed eyes. After staring blankly for a moment, Li Wei suddenly asked, "Bryan, did you just save us again?"
"Yea. I found you all hallucinating and in dire circumstances, so I knocked you out and carried you away from that place one by one!" Han Shuo explained as he had no need to conceal that fact. Before he could lay Donna down, she began to burble something and he saw that she was sobering up.
Donna cried out in surprise when he saw Han Shuo was carrying her by her waist. She looked around frazzled and recognized the situation. She asked, "Bryan, you saved me?"
Seeing that Donna had awoken, Han Shuo put on a smile and placed her down before he apologetically explained, "You were hallucinating. As your mind was in a very unstable state, I had to knock you out."
"It's alright! Thank you!" Donna replied with a sweet smile. Then, suddenly, as though having recalled something, her tender and beautiful cheeks blushed and her watery eyes started glancing around Han Shuo's lips.
"Ahem!" Han Shuo immediately realized something from the direction of Donna's gazes and hastily wiped his lips with his sleeve. When he looked down, he noticed that there indeed were red marks on his sleeve. Some of the lipstick that Donna applied to her lips had come off onto Han Shuo's lips.
"Oh… You… You two…" When Li Wei's sharp eyes discovered the abnormal expressions on Han Shuo and Donna's faces, she covered her mouth in shock and put on an expression of disbelief.
Having heard Li Wei's light cry, the crowd turned their attention to the two and seemed to have made the connection. They all put on peculiar expressions. Among them, Bowen's face turned rather gloomy and his eyes were again filled with traces of hostility.
"This… that… It's not what you're imagining!" Donna's cheeks turned even redder as she hastily explained.
Han Shuo too was rather embarrassed. When everyone again had their gazes gathered on him, he lightly cleared his throat and explained, "Miss Donna was hallucinating and had mistaken me for someone else. I was in a rush to rescue her and did not anticipate that she would… "
"Stop talking!" Donna interrupted Han Shuo's words, glanced at Bolten and the others and smilingly scolded, "You bunch of mischievous kids, how could your minds all be so dirty?"
"Oh? We didn't say a thing, did we?" Li Wei replied with a mischievous smirk.
"Alright! Alright!" Donna shot a smiling glare at Li Wei and soon turned to Han Shuo and said somewhat apologetically, "In any case, thank you. I apologize for any transgression I may have made! Please don't keep it in mind!"
"Don't worry about it," Han Shuo replied, though he thought to himself, What else can I do about it? Make redress by returning the kisses back to you?
"We all have Bryan to thank yet again. It seems that Bryan really is our lucky star!" Bolten started to express his gratitude passionately. His gazes towards Han Shuo blazed even brighter. If Han Shuo was not aware of his sexual orientation, he might have mistaken Bolten as a homosexual.
"Truly a mysterious fella. He's saved us once again!" Li Wei muttered as she gleamed at Han Shuo.
The first time he helped them out of trouble could be discounted as mere luck, but not the second time.
Han Shuo was calm and unruffled. He did not behave conceitedly but merely smiled without saying a word. He knew that these people must have been very curious about him and how he could repeatedly rescue them from the dangers found in this mysterious place; it was puzzling, how a god as small as himself from a low-level material plane could perform such miraculous actions.
Donna looked at the path ahead and mumbled to herself, "How should we proceed next?"
There was no other demonic formation ahead of them other than the colossal Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester surrounded by several mountains. Gazing at the majestic mountains up ahead and sensing the extremely intense mystical yin aura, Han Shuo felt as though he saw that ancient senior from the school of demonic arts with powers that could topple mountains and overturn the seas performing the magnificent feat of altering the laws of heaven at this place.
Han Shuo was absent-minded for a brief moment as he let his imagination run wild. His head was filled with absolute admiration for that existence.
"Bryan, do you think we should proceed further?" seeing that Han Shuo did not put forth any suggestion, Donna mentioned him by name and asked.
Han Shuo was dazed for a moment and looked at Donna with astonishment. He smiled awkwardly and said, "Why are you asking me? You are our leader. You should be the one calling the shots!"
Donna was actually rather stunned at herself after hearing those words. She thought, Yeah, why am I asking him? I should be the one making decisions! After thinking carefully about it, Donna suddenly discovered that with Han Shuo having rescued her twice, unwittingly, her impression of Han Shuo had changed. Although Han Shuo did not possess much strength, for some reason, she had taken Han Shuo as an expert of equal ranking who could truly assist her.
Li Wei, however, did not feel that anything was inappropriate. "You always astonish people with miraculous feats and have excellent observation power. It's normal that big sister Donna would ask for your opinion!" Perhaps she herself had failed notice it but her attitude towards Han Shuo had also unwittingly flipped.
"Just tell us what you think. I think by now, no one would dare disregard your opinion!" Donna said with a sweet smile and looked at Han Shuo with anticipation.
Han Shuo looked all around and discovered that just as Donna had said, each and every member of the party was looking at him with expectation. Even that Bowen who revealed a trace of hostility at him was waiting for his opinion. None of them felt that anything was inappropriate about it.
Ha! These fellas sure are pragmatic! Han Shuo remarked to himself. He then put on a grave expression and said in a deep voice, "We have come so far and I don't think anyone here would wish to turn back right now. None of us knows the situation up ahead. But I think it is only by venturing further that we could understand everything that is in this place. What do you all think?"
Han Shuo himself had no fear of any danger that laid in this place and was absolutely not worried about being confronted with greater danger. Therefore, he remained very calm and did not take into account the dangers that might await up ahead in his decision.
The party nodded. Donna voiced her agreement, "In that case, let's press forward and find out what this place is made of!"
The party agreed and was about to advance forward when Han Shuo suddenly raised his hand and gestured the party to halt. He turned his head around and gazed at a demonic formation he wasn't familiar with located not far away. He appeared very vigilant.
When Donna and the party saw Han Shuo's hand gesture, they all ceased their motion and turned their gazes towards where Han Shuo was looking.
Heavy gasps could be heard coming from that direction. A group of four in incomparably battered state walked into their sights.
Olde, Kelly, Kaiser, and Eriksson, all had injuries from head to toe. The wounds were either bone-deep, severely charred, or rotting and flowing with pus. No one knew what nightmare they had experienced. They wore faces lingering with fear and heavily panting for air. They seemed to have trouble even walking. It appeared that they had exhausted a great amount of their divine energy.
"Oh! It's them!" Li Wei softly exclaimed and looked at Donna with inquisitive gazes.
Bolten, Bowen, and the others were all very tempted. They looked at Donna and hoped that she would issue the command to attack.
It was obvious that Kaiser and the others had all suffered severe injuries. Every one of those people had exhausted most of their divine energies. Under such circumstances, if Donna and her party were to launch an all-out attack, it was very likely that all four of them could be finished off.
Donna's eyes flickered with indecision and subconsciously cast inquisitive gazes at Han Shuo. He immediately responded by shaking his head gravely.
"No!" Donna hissed after keeping silent for a few seconds.
Li Wei and the others put on disappointed expressions but did not try to refute her decision and instead cast puzzled looks at Han Shuo. It was obvious that Donna had given up on the thought of attacking because of Han Shuo's influence.
"That Olde character isn't as weak as he appears on the surface! At this moment, Miss Donna could possibly finish off both Kaiser and Eriksson by herself but, even with all of us combined, we are no match against Olde. Therefore, it's better if we just stay put!" Han Shuo explained in a low voice.
That Kelly from the Druidic Order was not even taken as a threat. Kelly used to fight alongside Han Shuo back when both of them were merely demigods. However, Han Shuo's strength had greatly soared while Kelly remained in the same realm. Demigod strength was no longer anything that was worthy of being taken seriously by Han Shuo.
Han Shuo was certain that the reason Kelly could stay alive all the way to this stage was entirely because Olde had provided him shelter. Otherwise, Kelly, who was merely a demigod wouldn't have made it half as far as he had, given that all four lowgods that came with Kaiser and Eriksson did not make it.
To have the strength to preserve himself and carry the burden of preserving Kelly's life through all those dangers made Han Shuo wary. He wouldn't launch an attack without having absolute certainty of the outcome.
"How, how is it that none of you are injured?" the panting Kaiser raised his head and was astonished by what he saw. He stared at Donna and the party and asked.
The Donna and her experts all subconsciously turned to Han Shuo. These experts had witnessed the dire condition of their opponents and rejoiced even more that they had Han Shuo on their team. Without needing much thought, and having personally tasted the perils themselves, they understood that if Han Shuo wasn't around, they might have ended up in a much more disastrous state than Kaiser and his party.
Those four on the other side were all characters with incredibly acute eyes and immediately discovered the focus of their gazes. They were greatly shocked and rather baffled, not knowing what this weak lowgod who was Han Shuo had to do with them not getting injured.
"Let's just ignore them and continue forward!" Han Shuo shouted and repeatedly winked at Donna. He could tell that those on the other side were trying their best to recover their energy after walking out from the demonic formation.
Donna thought for a quick minute and immediately understood Han Shuo's intentions. She then instructed Bolten and the others to follow Han Shuo into the Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester.
Just as expected, as soon as Kaiser and the others saw Donna and her party march forward, they dared not to pause but hurriedly tried to catch up to them.
The more time the four spent in recovering their divine energy, the better they could fend off Donna and the others. However, as Donna headed deeper into the formation, those on the other side naturally dared not to stay for much longer as they were afraid that Donna and her team would obtain whatever treasure that may be lying within. Under such circumstances, these people had no time to recover their divine energy which meant a better chance of survival for Donna and her party.
"Oh!" Han Shuo let out a soft cry as soon as he stepped into the Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester.
"What's the matter?" Donna asked.
"Nothing!" Han Shuo hurriedly replied before he turned around and said gravely, "Follow right behind me. Don't lose me from your sight!"
Donna and the others did not say a word and did as they were told. The very next moment, they discovered themselves within a strange forest made of stone. It was at this moment that Olde and his party also entered the formation. For some reason, they all had astounded expressions on their faces while gazing ahead. They were discussing something in astonishment.
"They couldn't see us. Everyone get ready. Now is the best time to get rid of them!" Han Shuo decisively instructed when his teammates looked at him in utter confusion.
Donna and the others were astonished and stared at Han Shuo in a bewildered manner as they thought to themselves, How did you know they couldn't see us over here? How are you so sure this would be the best time to kill them?