In the valley where Mr and Mrs Shiping had committed suicide, a group of people and two dogs had arrived.
It has long been empty and deserted, a picture of serenity. The Mountain Rats that had their nest here had long since left to who-knows-where.
"Master, why can't we just slaughter these pair of Earthly Hounds and be done with it so we can return home?" asked one of the people in the group.
Bai Shixin shook his head in answer, "We can't slaughter them, they're part of a future plan of mine. This will be a difficult task for you lot; these two demon dogs, they descended in their physical bodies like the fools they were and lost a lot of power. But to you bunch of locally-bred Greater Rat Demons, they're incredibly nutritious and will improve your Cultivation Base greatly, which will allow you lot to help me out even more. Since that's the case, pick one to eat first. After you're done, return immediately as I still have things to do."
Hearing this, the trio of subordinates' eyes glimmered with gratitude before it shifted into greed. Their gazes landed on the dogs that had been tied up tightly, which cause a shiver to run down the dogs' spines.
"Thank you for your generosity, Master. But which dog should we eat first?"
Bai Shixin swept his gaze across both the dogs before he said, "That yellow dog has been cultivating for longer, so eating that one would do you lot better. Those humans didn't know this and just appraised everything based on external appearance. Get that yellow dog and prepare it for slaughter."
Hearing this, the black dog's face lit up at its own luck before it turned to look at the yellow dog, who seemed to be extremely pissed off. It barked a few times, "You never expected this right? Boss, your schemes may work against humans, but it won't work on people who already have you figured out!"
The yellow dog did not answer. Instead, it closed its eyes as if it were admitting defeat.
Bai Shixin seemed to understand their language, he listened in interest before he laughed, "Despite them having similar cultivation experiences, why is one so smart while the other one is so stupid? Wisdom really isn't something that can be cultivated through cultivation alone."
The black dog could not retort for fear of being chosen itself.
At this moment, Bai Shixin suddenly felt a need to be mischievous, or maybe he was just bored, because he continued to say, "Letting one of you die seems like a good choice. I had witnessed everything that happened just now. When I appeared, you had already stood up, Yellow Boss. You weren't planning on escaping, you were planning on attacking those dog butchers, right?"
This time, the yellow dog slowly opened its mouth to speak, "Who would've expected that you would have such sharp eyes, that black servant beside me didn't even notice, yet you saw everything despite being so far away."
Bai Shixin laughed aloud once more, "The fact that you were pretending to be weak was because you wanted the black dog to be chosen first when the humans opened the cage right? Once the humans had opened the cage door and had their attention focused on the black dog, your slightly better cultivation would then allow you a better hand at successfully ambushing the humans right? In the end, the both of you would be able to run away together."
The yellow dog answered, "You're right."
The black dog was confused, "Then why didn't you discuss things with me first, Yellow Boss? I could've cooperated with you properly.
Bai Shixin continued to laugh, "You black servant, you couldn't even see through such a simple ruse until I exposed it, you even laughed at the person that wanted to save your life. If he had discussed things with you beforehand, would you have been able to put on a realistic act? Ugh, just looking at you reminds me of that human saying that goes you really make me feel quite superior in terms of IQ…"
The black dog was stunned, it had completely misunderstood Yellow Boss' intentions. It started barking loudly, spewing countless apologies.
The yellow dog finally reacted, "You black servant, just give it a rest. After hearing what that rat said, I believe you're still useful to them, so you'll be kept alive if you're lucky."
Bai Shixin nodded his head, "You really can't deny the canine in you. That innate sense of gratitude and loyalty to their own kind really is quite different from the Greater Rats' innate cunning and selfishness. What a waste, I wanted to keep you as a Think Tank. But I have no choice since we're enemy clans, I can only let you be eaten by my subordinates."
At this moment, Bai Shixin's trio of subordinates were already done with setting up the kitchenware. They were just boiling the water to be used for cooking so that they could prepare a delicious buffet of dog meat.
The black dog knew that it would not be killed, but it sobbed, tears streaming down its face.
Bai Shixin shook his head once more but no words left his mouth.
A moment later, the water was already boiling. One of the subordinates lifted the yellow dog and hovered him over a pot. The gazes of both dogs met before tears started flowing freely down both their faces.
Just when one of the subordinates wanted to drop the yellow dog into the boiling water, Bai Shixin suddenly turned to look at the sky in the distance. He then said, "Forget it, seems like you lot are out of luck because you won't be able to eat it today. The other part of my plan has arrived earlier than scheduled so there must be something wrong. You three must leave this instant."
"Yes, Master." Despite how the subordinates were practically drooling for dog meat, they obeyed their orders and escaped through a tunnel without hesitation.
The yellow dog stopped crying and open its mouth to speak, this time using the language of humans, "That's my first time seeing a Greater Rat Demon who shows such mercy towards their subordinates. Let me guess, you're using us as bait to lure that dragon, right? You're afraid your subordinates would die in vain, so you had them leave first."
Hearing this piqued Bai Shixin's interest; he liked communicating with smart people, because communicating with idiots only made him feel like he was playing chess with a wall.
Bai Shixin spoke, "Your guess is right, but let me ask you another question. I only need one alive in my plan, so I could've let them bring one of you back to be eaten. Why did I have them slaughter you to be eaten right in front of me?"
The yellow dog answered, "There's a few possible answers. But according to your previous actions, there could only be one reason. You're afraid that if you allowed them to not eat me in private, somebody would take advantage of their power and eat more because of how nutritious I am. They might even hog me completely, which would mean that your plan to have them owe you a debt of gratitude would fail completely. You can't do anything to stop something like that from happening either, since the demon world was where only the fittest survived. If you had reprimanded them, it would backfire on you instead.
"I'm sure you lot haven't been in this world for very long; you said they were locally-born Greater Rat Demons so taming them mustn't have taken long. They might seem obedient on the surface, but I doubt they're as obedient truly. You have to find a balance between being fierce and being nice, or it'll take a long time for them to truly follow you completely."
Bai Shixin could not help but clap his hands, "Well done, well done indeed. Not only are you smart, you can read a human's heart quite well too. Sadly, you Earthly Hound Clan members only mixed around with the powerhouses of the human race. No matter how much I admire you and want to recruit you, the Elder Ancestor would never agree."
The black dog by the side who had heard everything was dumbfounded, 'Despite both of us being bachelor dogs that only descended into this world to look for women, Yellow Boss is so much smarter than me. Now that I think about it, why can't Yellow Boss get a woman at 250 years old despite being so smart?'
Once Bai Shixin had finished speaking, he suddenly pointed the air with both his hands simultaneously and the dogs' mouths were sealed tight, their entire body unable to move even a single limb.
"Seeing as how you're smart, I won't kill you first. Whether or not you can live later depends on your luck," with that, he disappeared in mid-air.
Although both dogs could not move their bodies, their gazes met and they communicated with their eyes.
The black dog spoke first, "I'm sorry, Yellow Boss. If we survive this, I'll let you make a move first the next time we meet pretty ladies."
The yellow dog answered, "Thank you so much for that. You heard so much so I'm sure you are clear on the differences in our intellect. Be sensible later and do whatever I do."
The black dog had long since accepted the difference and immediately answered, "I'll follow everything you say. That person just now was scary, we couldn't detect an aura despite knowing he was hiding nearby."
"Hmph, if my guess is correct, he must be an assassin from the Greater Rat Clan; they're only weaker than the Royals in terms of cultivation. But if we were to talk about the natural ability of camouflage, the Royals can't even begin to compare."
"Then can that dragon its trying to lure fight against it?"
"We'll have to see if that dragon can evade the first move. However, we can't do anything to notify the dragon, and at most we'll just make the dragon lose its focus. We just have to see if the dragon is lucky or not."
Not long after, the pair of dogs felt an extremely strong aura appear in the valley. From the comparison of the aura alone, its power was obvious. It was a few times stronger than that Greater Rat Demon just now; even if the both of them were at their peak, they would still be weaker than this dragon.
Since they couldn't speak or move currently, they decided that they want this new arrival as an owner.
The System Space.
The System spoke first, "I found the pair of demon dogs."
Fang Ning answered, "Congrats, congrats."
Fang Ning thought to himself, 'Then why is my Internet going to be down a week? Do I really have to wait a week? I still have to wait for the expansion of the new area.'
The System then said, "But, I can't farm them."
"Oh, that's because their names are still yellow right? There's no need to worry, let me just let my emotions build for a bit. Because of their sudden appearance, I had to be cut off from the Internet for a week, so I'll immediately make their names red.
"No matter how much emotions you build, it'll be pointless this time around."
Fang Ning was bewildered. He immediately viewed the System Map and was shocked, "Why do they both have green names?"
He thought back to the last time green names had appeared; it had happened after President Zhao had visited his restaurant for a meal, and he had watched President Zhao's name turn green after eating his delicious food. No System Notifications appeared then, and he had to be notified of the change by the System. Why did these pair of demon dogs had their names change color too?
When they first appeared, they didn't appear with green names on the System Map, or the System would have told Fang Ning about it.
Fang Ning was extremely confused, "Does this mean right after they first appeared, they were already worshipping our wisdom and brilliance? And now they've decided to become our allies? If I remember correctly, we've never triggered the "Shock of Willpower" ability right?"
"How would I know?"
Fang Ning just couldn't make heads or tails of anything; after using the System's View to look around, he finally found his answer.
According to the System, the two demon dogs would be on par with the Bai family's Elder Ancestor once their power had returned completely.
However, both of them were now not only tied up completely, a huge pot filled with boiling pot was right by them as well. Even a blind person could tell it was going to be a dog meat feast.
They were almost killed by humans not too long ago, and now they were going to be eaten by a bunch of Greater Rat Demons. They had used so much effort descending into this world, but it seemed like instead of coming to rule this place, they were here just to be eaten as a meal!
Fang Ning came to a dire realization, "I understand now, because of their pitiful state, they must be wanting us to save them after we appeared! Right after Zheng Dao was saved the last time, his name had immediately changed into blue. Their green names are nothing now, I'm sure they'll change into blue names after we save them too."
As the system and its host continued their conversation, all anybody else could see was an immobile and irresponsive Vigilante A.
Suddenly, a voice roared aloud.
"Ten Step Kill!"
Right after the voice had fallen, all Fang Ning could see using the System's View was a bright flash of light that whizzed past under him. He immediately felt lighter and his face dropped in horror…