GDK 657: You're invited!
"What pattern? How come I don't see any?" Li Wei was astounded. She turned her head and looked all around. However, save for the colorful miasmic gasses that filled every inch of the air, she did not notice anything unusual.
"There are only colorful miasmas in here and nothing else is clearly visible. What pattern are you talking about?" Donna was startled and mumbled to herself in a pensive manner.
"Did any of you notice that these miasmic gasses circulate in a certain repeating pattern?" Han Shuo said smilingly and pointed at the air.
Upon hearing those words, the party was dazed for a moment before they gathered their full attention on the flow of miasmic gasses around them and observed the motion of the gasses.
When they looked closer, they noticed that there really was something unusual about the circulation of those colorful miasmic gasses.
The gasses took on five different colors - red, blue, green, purple, and black. They did not interfere with each other or become mixed together and seemed to be well coordinated as they circulated through the atmosphere. The miasmic gasses would take turns in corroding the party one after another.
"Oh! There really seems to be a rhythm!" Li Wei was greatly excited. She then gazed at Han Shuo who was right beside her and questioned eagerly, "Could these miasmic gasses be the key to leaving this place?"
"I suppose so!" Han Shuo calmly replied. The Pentacloud illusionary formation made use of the miasmic gasses of five colors. As long as one managed to grasp the rhythm of circulation of the gasses, one would be able to figure out how to escape from this formation.
"Alright then, let's focus and try to learn the pattern!" Donna instructed her teammates. She had confidence in Han Shuo.
After hearing those words, the crowd who had stayed inside the Pentacloud Miasma for ages cared about nothing more than observing the rhythm of the five-colored miasmic gasses in hopes of figuring the way out of this dangerous place.
Some time had passed before they even made out a few circulation rhythms of the miasmic gasses. They still, unfortunately, had absolutely no understanding of the Pentacloud illusionary formation and therefore couldn't find the method of exiting it.
"I, I can't hold on much longer!" Bolten's face was swelling deep red. He had exhausted a great portion of his divine energy and was rather terrified.
Meanwhile, Li Wei's servant, Colbert, who did not utter a word, showed a pale and weak face. It appeared that he would completely exhaust his divine energy soon.
"Li Wei, let's get out and let Colbert and Bolten take our places!" Donna decisively instructed Li Wei at this critical moment. She then looked at Han Shuo sternly and said, "Bryan, we need to work together as one at moments like this!"
Han Shuo took a deep breath and put on a smile before saying, "You need not get out!"
"Why? Colbert is nearly dying. Even if my divine weapon will be destroyed, I can't just do nothing and watch him die! I'm getting out, don't stop me!" Li Wei said anxiously when she saw Colbert's face turn paler and paler.
After hearing Li Wei's words, a glimpse of gratitude was revealed in Colbert's powerless eyes. He hastily said, "My Lady, don't worry about your old servant. My life is meant to be given to your Grace, not the other way round!"
"What are you talking about? No one will lose their life today!" Donna berated.
"I said, there's no need to get out!" When Han Shuo saw that Li Wei would actually be so considerate at such moments, he thought that she did have some redeeming quality. With everyone's gazes yet again gathered on him, Han Shuo said confidently, "I have found the pattern. Follow after me, I will lead you all out of here!"
"Are, are you sure?" Bolten was pleasantly surprised to hear those words of Han Shuo's at such a moment of despair.
"There shouldn't be any problem!" Han Shuo affirmed before he instructed, "Make a line behind me and follow my steps closely. If I run, you run. If I crawl, you crawl. Don't be a step behind. Otherwise, don't blame me if you don't make it out of here!"
"Bryan, are you sure we will walk out from here before they completely exhaust their divine energy?" Donna was worried for her teammates and therefore sought for reaffirmation.
"Trust me!" Han Shuo said with the confidence of a conman.
At this desperate time, as none of them had any better idea and seeing that Han Shuo was being so assertive, they understandably lined up behind him as instructed.
With the crowd fully ready, Han Shuo wasted no words. Radiances glistened off his eyes as he attentively observed the movement of the miasmic air around him. Suddenly, when the red miasma dispersed and a cloud of purple miasma was about fill in the void, Han Shuo took five quick steps to his left. Bolten and the others who had been carefully watching Han Shuo from behind him immediately copied his movements.
After taking five steps, they discovered that the red miasma that had previously dispersed had magically returned to their side and continued to corrode them.
After keeping still for ten or so seconds, the red miasma again dispersed and Han Shuo started to move again. This time, he moved very slowly to his right. After ten steps, Han Shuo and his party again came to where the red miasma gathered.
It was then that the party realized that Han Shuo had actually managed to follow the cloud of red miasma and their confidence in him grew. Prior to this, the miasmic gases had only been drifting about in an erratic pattern and definitely wouldn't appear around them repeatedly. Having walked in circles for so long, they had never been corroded by miasmic gas of the same color more than once.
"You found it!" Li Wei who was leaning closely beside Han Shuo suddenly turned her fragrant lips to Han Shuo's ear and whispered.
Han Shuo was not distracted by the slightest. He watched for changes ahead of him calmly. Lining behind him, Bolten and the others observed Han Shuo with rapt attention, waiting for his next move.
"Everyone get ready to step backwards at my command!" Han Shuo calmly shouted.
Bolten and the others appear startled when they heard Han Shuo's words. They had no idea why Han Shuo would suddenly want to them to step back when they were just fine advancing forward. But by then, they had placed all their hopes on Han Shuo. They remained silent and had staunch eyes as they waited for further instructions.
After ten seconds, Han Shuo suddenly shouted, "Take eight quick steps backwards!"
None of them dared hesitate. They hastily took eight steps in reverse as Han Shuo had instructed. When they again stopped, they discovered that the red miasmic gas was again lingering beside them and corroding their shields.
"Wow! It's a miracle!" Bolten cheered. He was no longer skeptical of Han Shuo and knew that he had grasped the rhythm of the miasmic gas circulation.
Donna, who was right next to Han Shuo, couldn't help but grab at Han Shuo's arm and cry out in amazement, "You actually found the pattern!"
Han Shuo took three steps forward yet again. Although he appeared to be pacing back and forth in vain, the red miasmic gas had never slipped away from them.
Finally, Han Shuo took five slow but large strides to his right. The scene around them suddenly transformed and there was no longer a single puff of the corrosive gasses around them. After a quick look, they discovered that they really had exited that mysterious place filled with miasmic gasses.
The Brook brothers and Colbert following closely behind Han Shuo were startled when they walked out from the Pentacloud Miasma but became overjoyed soon after. Colbert and Bowen still remained silent but their eyes were filled with relief and joy for having escaped. Bolten chuckled, then walked to Han Shuo somewhat unwillingly, hesitated for a moment before he stammered, "That, erm, about my previous conduct, please don't take offense. Erm, about this, thank you!"
For this proud and arrogant youngster born into an aristocratic family to express his gratitude to Han Shuo before Donna and the others indicated that Bolten had indeed made some adjustments to his attitude after the bitter experience of nearly losing his life.
Han Shuo nodded. Instead of being arrogant about his achievement, Han Shuo had the standard expression as he calmly replied, "You're welcome. We are all on the same front and are tied together for good or for worse. Helping each other is what we ought to do!"
Seeing that Han Shuo did not take the opportunity to say anything that would humiliate him, Bolten felt even more grateful and put away his spiteful and unkind gazes towards Han Shuo. When he looked at Han Shuo with a grateful heart, he suddenly discovered that just as Donna had said, there were indeed many things about him that were worth learning from.
For example, his will and perseverance in never losing his calm in the face of danger were definitely gradually fostered through constantly confronting death for a long period of time.
When he looked at Han Shuo from this new perspective, Bolten discovered that although Han Shuo wasn't particularly valiant, a certain quality possessed by Han Shuo had foreordained that in the future, Han Shuo would definitely not be a nobody. To be qualified for this mission, Bolten was no mediocre person either. After having arrived at a second opinion of Han Shuo, his attitude towards Han Shuo instantly made a full 180-degree swing.
"Haha, we are fortunate to have you around. If not for you, I'm afraid that both Bowen and I wouldn't have escaped from tragedy. Bryan, I hope that after this mission is over, you will be guest to our family. We Brook brothers will make sure to give you the best treatment as gratitude!" the sudden transformation of Bolten's attitude towards Han Shuo had everyone startled. Even the taciturn Bowen was mystified, not understanding why his brother would become so polite so abruptly.
Donna inwardly nodded in his heart and thought that perhaps Bolten wasn't all that unredeemable.
After hearing Bolten's invitation, Han Shuo looked deeply into his eyes and saw that he was actually being sincere. With just one thought, Han Shuo roughly made out what was on Bolten's mind and so he smiled mischievously and replied, "Sure!"
"And my family as well. Bryan, you have also saved us. On behalf of my family, I'm also formally inviting you to be our guest!" Li Wei giggled and made an invitation.
Han Shuo was stunned to discover that he was suddenly in great demand. Han Shuo actually found it rather difficult to get accustomed to the situation when these two fellas who had been contemptuous towards him all along turned so cordial all of a sudden. With Li Wei's big eyes fixed on him, he replied, "Hehe, sure, sure!"
"Bryan, you are quite reputable aren't you! These two fellas are infamous for their arrogance. Who would've thought they would invite you as their guest simultaneously! Haha," Donna giggled and teased Han Shuo.
Han Shuo appeared very relaxed. With a smile on his face, he said, "Alright, alright, let's all rest and recover. We have more obstacles waiting for us up ahead!"
After the Pentacloud Miasma, there was the Black Gust of Doom. They were currently at the connecting point between the two demonic formations and were not affected by any of the formations. During the round of battering, the party had consumed at least some of their divine energy. Now was not the time to slack.
"Bryan is right. Let's stop talking and instead use the time to recover our energy, " Donna agreed and instructed.
Knowing that they still had challenges to face up ahead, the party stopped chit-chatting and started gathering the elements between heaven and earth to recover the energy they lost.
Of the party, only Han Shuo was unoccupied. As those miasmic gases did not corrode his protective shield, the demonic yuan he consumed was extremely limited and therefore he need not put effort into recovering energy. He started to observe the Brook brothers in silence.
Bolten and Bowen both cultivated in the edict of destruction and they both possessed late-stage lowgod strength. Han Shuo had very poor knowledge of the edict of destruction. As one who would never give up on any opportunity to improve his strength, of course Han Shuo would seize this opportunity to observe the two.
Both Bolten and Bowen unfurled their Domains of Divinity that were filled with the wish of destroying all things. Their Domains of Divinity caused the space to distort and destroy the stones and even the air around them. Under the effects of the edict of destruction, they recovered the divine energy in their bodies bit by bit.
One of Han Shuo's avatars also cultivated in the edict of destruction. Han Shuo watched carefully and noted the circulation trajectory of the edict of destruction inside Bolten and Bowen's Domains of Divinity. He planned on attempting it himself someday in the future.
Meanwhile, Donna finally managed to fully recover. When Han Shuo noticed that, he hastily withdrew his gaze towards the Brook brothers.
What he did was a taboo and Han Shuo had no wish of letting Donna discover this rude behavior. No one would wish to be peeped at while cultivating because it could possibly expose the weakness of one's energy and it could land one in a disadvantaged situation.
Han Shuo put on a normal look and smiled at Donna. Before he could say anything, he suddenly heard a blood-curdling shriek in the distance. That voice sounded exceptionally bleak, like the final cry one would make before succumbing to death.
Han Shuo creased his brows but soon after, he put on a bitter frown and said, "It seems that someone has run into trouble. But for us, this is great fortune!"
"It is you who is our fortune. Without you, some of us would likely have fallen!" Donna said, giggling. It was obvious that Donna was happy about the death of one of her opponents.