Somewhere deep within the fog
In the middle of the jungle formed with black statues.
Sylphalan half-kneeled on the ground, breathing heavily, one of his hands pressed on the ground while the other on his heart.
His heartbeat, as loud as drums, echoed throughout the jungle of stone statues.
Sylphalan bit his lower lip, the hand on his heart clutching at his shirt and his chest. The drilling heart ache he had was impacting his ability to focus, even his vision started to blur.
"Still okay?" Flamingo walked out from behind a black statue. He wore a set of red clothing, the Sword of the Sprite sheathed by his side. He looked clean, like a ball of pure fire, not even his feet seemed to have any dust on them.
"Yeah…" Sylphalan struggled while standing up, but he managed a murmur. "Leave if the time comes, I suspect I wouldn’t be able to control myself."
Flamingo kept quiet.
"Don’t force yourself."
"I know. But after suppressing it for so long, I really need to let it loose once in awhile." Sylphalan answered.
"I really can’t tell if your choices then were right or wrong." Flamingo sighed helplessly then slowly stepped backward into the thick fog until his silhouette was completely gone.
Somewhere out there, footsteps approached hurried.
"He was hiding in here! Sylphalan, this time I will make sure you die!"
"Murderer! I finally can avenge my father today!" "Be careful of the others from Immortal Palace! Ace, tell everyone to be alert!" "Yessir!"
Sounds of people were approaching Sylphalan quickly. Numerous valiant auras surrounded Sylphalan.
All these people were elites, among them, at least four to five were able to unleash their Auras that were as strong as some of the top level Grandmasters of Combat, weaker to Duskdune Shura by a little. They were all here to seek revenge from Immortal Palace. Because of his strength, some of them were also trying to eliminate Sylphalan so they can have a chance of grabbing the Black Smoke Pot for themselves.
Sylphalan palpitated once more. His brows were slowly knitting together, veins popped up on his skin, congregating toward the center of his brows.
Sylphalan stood up, two bumps appearing on his armpits.
Garen examined the blade carefully. The rune blade in his hands were not very different from normal swords. No flowing runes, no special powers, as if it really was a normal longsword.
"Incredible…" He returned the rune blade to White Eagle. He wasn’t able to see anything, but some of the patterns on the sword was really fascinating.
The sky had already darkened by this point, moonlight spilled down from above, its shape blurred by the layer of fog.
"Mr. Garen." Dale Quicksilver finally returned to Garen’s side. "I think I know where the Clown King is."
"Oh?" Garen looked at him with interest. "Are you sure?"
"Yes." Dale Quicksilver nodded.
"Tell me, where is he hiding?" Garen stared at him attentively. He tried sensing everyone here including the Three Major Generals, everyone seemed normal to him.
"Clown King didn’t hide, he disguised." D
ale Quicksilver answered with confidence.
"Disguised?" Si Lan and King of Nightmares moved close to listen to the analysis.
"Yes, his disguise is pretty flawless, normal people wouldn’t be able to tell." Dale Quicksilver stated calmly. "Don’t you think the situation here feels a little odd?"
"Oh?" Garen was finally aware, about an hour ago, all the parties looked a little weird, something in them looked strange.
He looked around, focusing on each group as his gaze passed.
The Werewolves gathered around, talking about something inaudible.
The three Weisman Major Generals sat together not far away, eyes closed.
The Demon Hunters were fixing up something, looking busy.
The other smaller teams were also doing their own thing in their corner.
"Can you point him out directly?" Garen turned his attention back to Garen.
Dale scanned at the other people around, his gaze steady and calm. "The real Clown King was hiding among the obscure group over there." He looked at the crowd of unknown people in the corner. "Gate Master Garen, please take my signal when approaching him, or else he would be able to run away again!"
"Of course." Garen nodded.
"Good." Dale Quicksilver stared at the unknown group and raised his arm, as if to point out the target. "The real Clown King is… Seize White Eagle!"
He yelled and rushed behind Garen.
No one was able to react in that instant.
White Eagle paled, his rune blade slashed at Dale Quicksilver, creating a fan-shaped aura.
A strong draft toward the blade made him miss his aim.
The draft was Garen’s misty breath!
He leaped up, grabbing at the rune blade with one hand and at White Eagle’s neck with the other. His stance was like a fierce tiger hunting a sheep, bringing about chilly wind.
White Eagle yelped and retreated as he sheathed his sword. His lightly-stepping toes were even faster than Garen. He somersaulted in the air, evading Garen’s pounce.
"You again! Dale Quicksilver! I wanted to give you a chance, you deathseeker! I will kill you today!"
"Let’s see how you kill someone who’s under my protection!" Garen said coolly.
"No one had ever survived Clown King’s assassination!" The Clown King landed and pulled at his own face, tearing off a mask and revealing a man with strange makeup on his face.
Garen was going to attack when he suddenly heard Dale Quicksilver grunt. He turned back.
Detective Dale was pressing on his right arm, his face slightly green. That’s an obvious indication he was poisoned. The scarlet wound on his arm was definitely inflicted right before.
"Damn you!" Garen roared with fury.
His stomp made a hole on the ground as he shot himself toward the Clown King like an arrow. His right hand aimed at Clown King’s throat, pushing an invisible force to arrive before he did.
As the invisible force closed into Clown King’s throat, another force shot out from the side, bumping into Garen’s arm, making him miss his mark.
Garen’s attack hit a stone statue, crushing it like a bean curd and slicing a huge chunk off it. Pieces of stone hit the ground, creating tiny craters all over.
Even the pieces were so loaded with power from the missed attack, giving everyone else who witnessed it a chill.
Clown King shuddered. If it wasn’t for his savior, he would’ve been sliced in half with that attack.
Garen was furious. That attack could have killed the Clown King before he figured out his style of combat. Catching him by surprise and killing him would’ve rendered him unable to use any of his tricks, like the clowns before.
If it wasn’t for the third person who bumped into his arm.
He glared at the Clown King as he escaped like a threatened bunny. Feeling dissatisfied, he turned toward the one who parried his attack.
"You!" His eyes went wide, shocked.
Not only him, Andrela and King of Nightmares also felt surprised by the turn of events. They thought Garen would be able to finish the Clown King by himself. After all, however strong the Clown King was, he was still weaker than Duskdune Shura. Fighting him face-to-face would be easy, they weren’t expecting this turn of tides.
"We’ll go after him…" Andrela stood up with his hand on his sword, but he couldn’t finish his sentence.
King of Nightmares also looked serious as they looked around.
The Werewolves, the Demon Hunters, and the Three Major Generals of Weisman were all standing up, facing them, slowly encircling them.
Clown King laughed shrilly, looking at them from afar.
"Weisman’s Generals had already planned from the start to eliminate you elites from the Confederation. Temporary alliance? Talking terms and conditions? You idiots!"
The Glorious Chancer crossed his arms in front of his chest, standing still.
"White Peacock, if you agree to join the Weisman, then I won’t have to ruin my reputation after all these years building it for you."
Garen turned a deaf ear to him, his gaze slowly becoming mild as he looked at the one blocking him.
"I only thought you’ll make a move later, I didn’t expect you to carry it out so soon…"
He had already expected this situation. The Weisman’s were never trustworthy, he only thought they would carry it out so early.
The person in front looked at Garen calmly.
"To me, you were the biggest threat in this race. Give up, you no longer have any chance of getting it."
"Palosa, do you really think you can stop me?" Garen ripped off his shirt readily, revealing his fair sculpted upper body.
"Don’t forget, I’m the First Divine Warrior." Palosa also ripped off his shirt, revealing his skin tight black martial arts clothes.
The one blocking Garen from pursuing was Palosa who separated with them earlier. Garen didn’t know what agreement he had with Clown King, compelling him to save Clown King.
Garen slowly clasped his hands together as if praying to a Buddha statue. As his palms met, a transparent bubble of air slowly circulated around him.
"Since my mastery of the Divine Statue Technique, I haven't been using my full strength. Palosa… don't let me down."
His eyes widened, and his hands stabbed forward.
"Divine Statue, West Phoenix Fist!"
As Garen punched, a set of large wings appeared on his back. Those were wings as large as a Phoenix's. Shapeless and colorless, the wings extended out toward Palosa in synchrony with Garen's piercing hands.