GDK 656: Surrounded by goddesses
Surrounding the Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester were several dozen big and small demonic formations, but Han Shuo could recognize just two of them: Pentacloud Miasma and Black Gust of Doom. These two demonic formations were linked with each other and formed one of the paths to the center of the Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester.
Han Shuo's heroic spirit had won Olde's great admiration and repeated praise.
Donna was rather hesitant at first and could not immediately gather the resolution to enter. But when she saw Han Shuo step into the entrance before everyone else, she finally made up her mind. Donna nodded at Bolten, Li Wei, and the rest of her teammates before they caught up to Han Shuo in quick steps.
Just as Olde said, the main reason they had traveled from all the way across the universe was to explore that mysterious site, to study and investigate what wonders were lying there. They could hesitate all they wanted but in the end, they would still have to step inside.
Han Shuo closed his eyes and took a deep breath of the marginally corrosive air around him to get a sense of the poison's properties and toxicity. He processed it in silence.
Donna and her party who arrived beside Han Shuo looked up and down at him in confusion. They found Han Shuo's appearance of thinking with his eyes closed to be very strange.
Donna questioned, "Bryan, are you alright?"
Han Shuo opened his eyes and nodded. "Let's move!"
Han Shuo had originally planned on somehow inciting Kaiser and Eriksson's anger so that they would follow him into this Pentacloud Miasma. But after thinking, he knew that in order to get to the center of the Ninth Realm Mystical Yin Harvester, even if they did not walk into this Pentacloud Miasma, they would still have to go through other demonic formations.
Han Shuo understood that those demonic formations around the Ninth Realm Demonic Yin Harvester should have roughly the same destructive power. As there was no way to avoid entering a demonic formation, Han Shuo thought that his original plan was unnecessary and it'd be better if he just did nothing.
"Okay, everyone be extra careful. This place is very strange. Don't let your caution slip even for an instant!" Donna reminded.
Han Shuo understood that no matter how cautious one got, one would still have no way of avoiding being inside the formation, and therefore he was less inclined to keep Donna's reminder in mind. He took note his surroundings and tried to find a way out from the Pentacloud Miasma based on his understanding of the formation.
Before even their tenth step into the formation, an enormous transformation took place over the scene around them. Colorful but deadly gasses started filling the air from all directions in split second. Those deadly gasses must have been produced using special methods as they were extremely corrosive. Strange hissing noises polluted the air as soon as those gasses appeared.
"Watch out! Don't let the gas touch your skin!" Han Shuo cried out in alarm.
If there weren't enemies such as Olde and Kaiser around him, Han Shuo perhaps wouldn't have minded about the life or death of Bolten and those youngsters. However, since they had this common enemy, he had to preserve as many ally lives as possible. This would give his allies an advantage over their opponents if a battle were to break out between the two opposing forces - thus ensuring his own safety.
Han Shuo's warning put everyone in a manic frenzy. As though facing a great enemy, they deployed protective shields around themselves with their own unique methods in dismay. Li Wei, Donna, and Bowen were using divine weapons to shelter their bodies. Meanwhile, Bolten and Colbert formed a layer of protective shield around themselves using their divine energies. They managed to prevent the corrosive gasses from coming into contact with their bodies.
When the misleadingly colorful gasses made contact with their protective shields, they began to emit smoke.
Bolten shrieked as the protective layer he formed out of divine energy was slowly weakened.
"This is a nightmare. Even my divine weapon is corroding. We need to get out of here as soon as possible!" Li Wei complained.
Those miasmic gasses were refined using special methods that allowed them to corrode basically anything, especially physical bodies. Had they not insulated their bodies using such methods, their flesh and bones would have begun to melt away until they were finally reduced to puddles of blood and gunk.
Han Shuo too was swift in his reaction and hastily deployed his protective shield. A dark, oval-shaped screen as thin as a cicada's wing completely enveloped him. Han Shuo was as steady as a mountain after the shield was deployed. That shield, which was powered using demonic yuan, was invulnerable to the corrosion of the colorful miasmic gasses.
Han Shuo was shocked to discover that. Based on the description of the Pentacloud Miasma found in Chu Cang Lan's memory, the deadly gasses here could corrode away anything it touches. Matters that were invulnerable to it were extremely rare and his protective shield should not have been one of them.
However, for some reason, the gas could not penetrate his protective shield at all. Even Han Shuo was taken aback by the fact as he had no idea what caused it.
After racking his brain hard, Han Shuo suddenly thought of a possibility - what if the person who deployed the Pentacloud Miasma had altered the gasses in some ways that granted his protective shield immunity?
"What? How is his shield holding up so well?" Li Wei cried out in surprise yet again as she pointed at Han Shuo in confusion.
The rest of the party turned to look at him as well, each one as stunned as the next. Although they had divine weapons or divine energies around their bodies actively protecting them, their protective shields were nonetheless being corroded away by those miasmic gasses. Light smoke was coiling up and around them as though they had just walked out from a hot bath.
The layer of dark, translucent shield that enveloped Han Shuo, however, was not subjected to the corrosion of the miasmic gasses, making him stand out from the party.
"Bryan, how, how is this possible?" Donna asked.
"Well, I cultivate in a type of rare energy. Frankly, I have no idea why these gasses have had no effect on me!" Han Shuo knew that these people would not be satisfied if he didn't provide an explanation.
"Oh wow!" Li Wei giggled and right after, she continued in a very natural manner, "You clearly have some extra room. Let me get under there as well. My Precious must not be ruined by these hateful gasses!"
Upon finishing those words, without any concern for Han Shuo's approval or consent, she cheerfully walked over to Han Shuo, wanting to squeeze herself into his shield.
"There isn't enough room, sorry!" Han Shuo disliked Li Wei. As she rapidly flew over, Han Shuo shrunk the spacious protective shield with his thoughts until it was only enough for himself to stand under.
"There obviously was enough space just a moment ago!" Li Wei knew that Han Shuo did that on purpose and said angrily while glaring at Han Shuo.
"No there wasn't," Han Shuo replied with a straight face.
"Enough with that. We have to leave as soon as we can. There is nothing to gain from staying here for extended periods. These corrosive gasses are truly a little too frightening," Donna chided with creased brows. She then led the party off into the air.
All those people understood that Donna's words could not be truer. Bolten and Colbert, who did not have body-shielding divine weapons, were exhausting the divine energy stored in their bodies with each counting second. They couldn't wish more to immediately exit this terrifying place and therefore flew close behind Donna.
***After ten minutes.
There were droplets of sweat on Donna's forehead. She was obviously getting anxious, "What's going on here? Why is it that we haven't gotten out of this place? We have been traveling at such rapid speed; we must have traversed at least a few hundred miles. Why are we still inside this place?"
The Pentacloud Miasma was actually comprised of two components - the corrosive miasmic gasses and the formation of illusions. The corrosive gasses were the attacking component that corroded those who entered it. Meanwhile, the formation of illusions was an exquisite formation that would trap those who didn't understand the formation inside.
The corrosive power of the miasmic gasses was extremely formidable and was wearing down the tools or energy of those who entered the area at every last second. No matter how powerful the divine weapon or divine energy, it was not infinite and there would come a day that they would completely exhaust. If one couldn't exit the formation before then, in the end, they would be nothing more than a puddle of blood!
Donna was very clear about this, and therefore she was very anxious about leaving.
However, even after traveling for ten minutes at such rapid speed, they still couldn't exit the region, which looked less than several kilometers wide from the outside. It was simply illogical! Donna was able to recognize that something was wrong but unfortunately, she couldn't tell what it was as she knew nothing about the wonderful formation. She could only worry about it helplessly and feel defeated. In addition to the dreaded pressure that only increased with the passing of time, there was no way that Donna could remain cool-headed.
"Bryan, please, I beg you, please let me in! My divine weapon cannot suffer any more corrosion. " Li Wei was flustered. Even her usually spiteful tone vanished and she started to entreat Han Shuo piteously.
Han Shuo was indifferent as though he did not even hear Li Wei's cry.
Although Donna was distraught with anxiety, thanks to her excellent self-cultivation, she did not lose her rationality and pleaded to Han Shuo on behalf of Li Wei, "Bryan, if it's possible, just let her in."
Ever since she arrived on Profound Continent, she had shown Han Shuo the proper courtesy and respect. She had even defended Han Shuo with her words all along. There was no way that Han Shuo could reject her if she asked for a favor. Therefore, Han Shuo who had been turning a blind eye to Li Wei all along finally nodded his head, expanding his protective shield slightly. Then, with his two hands, he cut a fissure into his shield that would allow Li Wei to enter.
Li Wei was extremely happy. With one lithe movement, she propelled herself through that fissure and stuck close beside Han Shuo.
"Hmm, there is still some room left!" Donna softly cried out. With a delighted grin on her face, she said to Han Shuo, "Bryan, I don't think it would be a problem to add one more person!"
Han Shuo was speechless.
"I will take your silence as consent. Many thanks!" Donna pursed her lips and smiled. After Li Wei, she walked into Han Shuo's protective shield and leaned in to him as well.
"No more, there's no more space left!" When Han Shuo saw the fiery gazes of Bolten, Bowen, and Colbert cast on him, he hastily contracted his protective shield and tried to put a stop to their thoughts of also entering his shield.
When Han Shuo pulled back his shield, Li Wei panicked and therefore leaned closer to Han Shuo. Donna followed suit to avoid being exposed to the corrosive gas.
With that, by basically doing nothing, Han Shuo had two goddesses throwing themselves at him like opposite poles on a magnet.
Meanwhile, Bolten, Bowen, and Colbert outside his protective shield had to constantly resist the assault of the corrosive gasses. Bolten and Colbert who were exhausting their divine energy to defend themselves seemed especially strained and tired.
The contrast was stark; one part of the crew was in paradise and the other was in hell!
"This place is rather bizarre. I don't know if I will be able to find an exit for now. Bolten, Bowen, Colbert, since you all may have trouble staying under the corrosive gas, why don't you return to the entrance from whence we came and wait for our signal once we find the exit?" Donna appeared very apologetic and said so out of consideration for the three.
The three, whose faces were filled with agony as they eyeballed Han Shuo, were about to go in the other direction when Han Shuo suddenly yelled, "No!"
"You little wretch, who do you think you are? Do you want to watch us die in this gas? Will that satisfy you?!" Bolten was enraged to see Han Shuo closely surrounded by beauties while they were suffering. If Donna wasn't in there, he might have pulled Han Shuo out from his shield to make him go through the same agony!
Donna too was rather shocked. She turned to Han Shuo in a slightly awkward manner and with her rosy lips close to his ears. She said, "Bryan, they will surely die if they remain here!"
"No, they will surely die if they try to go back! Didn't you notice that we have been walking in circles around this same area this whole time? The way I see it, there is no going back once we've entered. I dare guarantee that if they travel in the other direction, they will never find the entrance or exit!" Han Shuo was fuming. He knew that these people had absolutely no understanding of the strangeness of a demonic formation and were so naive to think that they could always retreat to the entrance once the situation went south.
"Wh what? We have been walking in circles all along?!" Li Wei shrieked next to Han Shuo's ear. Her voice was sharp and caused Han Shuo to quiver, which subsequently made the protective shield shake along with him. Li Wei and Donna each grabbed onto either one of Han Shuo's arms and leaned even closer into him for the fear that they would leave the coverage area of his protective shield.
After being reminded by Han Shuo, Donna, the mightiest of the team, carefully recalled for a moment and muttered, "That, that seems to be the case!"
"After entering here, there is no path of return! We could either find the exit or we will die!" Han Shuo said coldly.
After listening to those words, the Brook brothers and Colbert who held hopes of leaving had faces as ashen as the dead.
Every last one of the gang was exceptionally flustered, and Han Shuo could see their desperation. He smiled and declared with his chest puffed, "If you look closely enough, you will see that there are some unique, but regular patterns in this place of colorful corrosive gasses. I think that as long as we find the proper pattern, we will make it out of here!"