The moment those words came out of second senior brother’s mouth, a freezing cold aura spread out from within his body. That cold aura was like the darkness in the sky, like the cold and merciless night. At that moment, it was as if second senior brother had turned into a completely different person!
Although he was standing beside Su Ming, Su Ming could clearly feel that his second senior brother had become different! Yet he was not unfamiliar with this second senior brother because he had seen him before!
Second senior brother’s feet slowly rose into the air and he hovered several inches above the ground. His long hair fluttered slowly in the wind, and that aloof expression on his face made him look incredibly stern.
At that moment, as the sky turned dark and night came, he turned into the darkness that would only appear at night, the one his day personality searched for!
All that which entered Su Ming’s line of vision was darkness appearing on the ground below where his second senior brother floated like a ghost. That darkness was not from snow but from the black grass that grew on it.
"The grass at night is black… Did you know that..?"
Second senior brother’s voice echoed in the air. As his voice traveled forth, the black grass behind him rustled. In that silent night, those rustling sounds were like people talking about something in soft mumbles.
The moment second senior brother approached the ice house closest to him, a sharp whistling sound came, and along with it came a black arrow. That arrow charged out of that ice house and towards second senior brother.
A ferocious Phantom Shadow materialized on the arrow. It howled as if it wanted to tear apart second senior brother alive and devour his flesh.
"I cannot find the darkness during night… Because I… am night itself…"
Second senior brother’s voice was cold. As he spoke, he turned towards the arrow and did not even bother dodging it. He simply let the arrow pierce his body, but as if his body had turned into a mere illusion, that arrow passed through him before it fell onto the black grass on the ground, humming as it did so.
Second senior brother’s footsteps did not show any signs of stopping. He continued moving forward, and what happened to him made Su Ming’s pupils shrink. Su Ming saw the Phantom Shadow that was formed by the black aura on the arrow around second senior brother’s body as if it had fused with him, and it was letting out shrill cries.
That cry shook the skies, and it was so shrill it sounded as if the Phantom Shadow was going through an unbearable pain. Yet in Su Ming’s eyes, he could only see the Phantom Shadow revolving around second senior brother and gradually becoming smaller, looking as if it could disappear at any time.
"Great Phantom Devourer Art! Why do you know Phantom Dais Tribe’s Secret Art?!" A voice filled with shock came from within the ice house the arrow had came from. At the same time, a person walked out from it.
It was a man dressed in a long white robe. His eyes sparkled, but they were currently shining with surprise and shock.
The moment the man walked out, sharp whistling sounds abruptly tore through the air, and more than a dozen sharp arrows shot out from the ice houses in the later section of Northern Frontier Tribe.
Most of these arrows were blue, but there were some which were black. There was even one of them whose black aura was so thick that the Phantom Shadow forming above the arrow was about 1,000 feet tall under the dark sky.
That sight was like Phantoms rushing out together and charging towards second senior brother in the form of arrows as they roared.
Su Ming’s expression changed. Without any hesitation, he took a step forward. Green light shone by his side and the small virescent sword sliced through the air towards the sky. Yet at that moment, second senior brother stopped moving and stretched out his arms. He then lifted his right and seized the air in the direction of the sky.
With that one move, Su Ming was thrown into disbelief. In his second senior brother’s hands, a large bow appeared!
That bow was entirely black. The body of the bow was made of black wood, and the bowstring was made of black grass. Second senior brother held it in his hand and drew the bow.
"I don’t only know Phantom Devourer, I also know your Phantom Bow Art."
As second senior brother’s aloof voice echoed in the air, he drew the bow fully. There was no arrow in his hand, but as he released the bowstring, Su Ming sucked in a deep breath. With his own eyes, he saw his second senior brother’s body turning into a wisp of black aura the moment the bowstring was released. Just like an arrow that left the bowstring, it charged towards the arrows raining down from the sky!
It was difficult to describe this scene. In Su Ming’s eyes, it was as if his second senior brother lost his physical body and turned into an arrow!
Yet this arrow was shot out the moment he released the bowstring. All of this happened in an instant. Su Ming saw his second senior brother turning into a black arrow, and in the black light of the arrow, he even saw a lock of hair!
At that moment, Su Ming suddenly gained a deeper understanding towards his second senior brother’s Creation.
He wandered about in-between life and death, like day-searching for the darkness at night, but this did not mean that he was only searching for darkness when it was day.
This was him searching for darkness at night.
Because he existed within night itself, that was why even if he found it, he would still forever be unable to see it… Su Ming looked at the arrow which was his second senior brother. The black aura on that arrow was very thick, and he could even see the faint Phantom Shadow gathering on it.
And… that Phantom Shadow’s appearance was exactly like his second senior brother’s face. Su Ming’s heart trembled. He understood then.
Understood why his second senior brother’s Creation was life and death, why his second senior brother liked flowers, why his second senior brother loved having sunlight fall on the side of his face...
...and also why his second senior brother was always searching during night…
"He actually turned into a Phantom Shadow?! Who is he?! This can’t be possible!"
"There is no Host, only the Phantom Shadow. This… This is… Could the Host be him?!" The Phantom Dais tribe members’ faces were filled with disbelief. Some of them even looked towards Su Ming.
At that moment, the arrow which was the transformed second senior brother in the sky and his Phantom Shadow crashed into the dozen arrows shot by the Phantom Dias Tribe.
A booming sound that shook the sky and earth, echoed far through the air. As that sound spread at a maddening pace, all the arrows flying towards second senior brother shattered and turned into millions of shards that tumbled backwards.
The many malicious Phantoms on the arrows and that Phantom that was 1,000 feet tall and surrounded by black aura let out terrified, shrill shrieks. Second senior brother’s body was like a vacuum that sucked in everything. All the malicious Phantoms were pulled towards him and revolved around him, causing second senior brother to look blurry as he stared at the ground underneath him coldly.
The vague shape of a horn could be seen faintly on second senior brother’s head. The color of that horn was black, but with a hint of green! The malicious Phantoms on his body quickly shrank, shrieking. It was as if they were all devoured by this second senior brother that only appeared during night.
"Phantom King! He’s the Phantom King!"
"This is impossible... It’s impossible!"
"He doesn’t have a host... How… How is he still alive?!"
Uproars reverberated through the surroundings, and the Phantom Dais tribe members present instinctively retreated. Their gazes when they looked at second senior brother in the sky were filled with terror and disbelief.
Behind them, balls of illusionary shadows appeared against their wills. These illusionary shadows were their Phantoms. When these Phantoms appeared, they looked towards second senior brother in the sky and their faces were also filled with the same horrified surprise, but there was still a difference. Within that horrified surprise was also a hint of zealous respect.
Su Ming looked at his second senior brother’s back and a complicated look appeared on his face. He understood then why Hu Zi chose to Enter his Dream so many times here. It was because this was a rare chance. They had their Master protecting them in the dark, and that was why he could Enter his Dream without worry.
It was just like the initial time he Entered his Dream when he was by Su Ming’s side. It was because he knew that Su Ming was by his side. Even if Su Ming had just joined the ninth summit, he could still tell that Hu Zi had truly regarded him as his junior brother.
A junior brother that could be protected and would offer his own protection at the same time.
It was just like how second senior brother acted now. This was clearly second senior brother’s secret, yet he did not choose to hide anything before Su Ming. He simply stood there and revealed his deepest secret.
Because second senior brother knew that his junior brother was there. Because he knew that his Master was there. Because he knew that even if he showed all this and something happened to him, he would still be safe. Because there were people who would protect him here, and several years later, perhaps another person he wanted to protect with his life would appear again.
"The rules of the ninth summit… aren’t made for killin but for protecting each other…" Su Ming mumbled. He understood.
He looked at his second senior brother’s back and the complicated look in his eyes vanished, replaced by steadfast resolution. This was not the first time that a determined gaze had appeared in Su Ming’s eyes, and this gaze did not just appear because his sense of belonging to the ninth summit had been wavering previously. This time, the steadfast resolution that appeared within his eyes was born of a desire to protect his home and his family!
This protective desire reminded Su Ming of Dark Mountain.
Dark Mountain was what he wanted to protect, but he did not succeed in the end… Right then, the ninth summit gave him the desire to protect something once again. He did not know whether he would succeed, but he knew that this was his home, and over here, he had a family.
Even if the family members within this home were different from others, even if one of the family members, his second senior brother… was not human!
He was a Phantom, one that had somehow escaped fate. He was a Phantom that longed for light even though he was of darkness. He loved plants because the life force within those flowers was similar to his…
His Creation was that of life and death, because he, he did not walk from life to death, but from death to life!
Su Ming understood now.
At the moment he gained the epiphany, suddenly, a cold harrumph came from the house underneath that lonely big tree at the edge of the snow plains of Phantom Dais Tribe.
When the harrumph sounded, Su Ming’s body trembled and his Divine General Armor materialized on his body while Han Mountain Bell rang to resist it. Yet no matter what, blood still trickled down from his mouth.
There was a cold chill seeping out of that voice, and once it appeared, all the tribe members of Phantom Dais Tribe shuddered and knelt in the direction of that house.
Second senior brother’s body trembled in midair when that cold harrumph sounded. Rumbling sounds came from nearby, and before second senior brother, a gigantic Phantom Claw shot out from the dark sky, moving to catch him!
When that gigantic Phantom Claw appeared, a cold and old voice followed suit. "Are you done fooling around?!"
Once that voice spoke, suddenly… another voice answered back with the exact same words, "Are you done fooling around?" However, this voice was not cold. Instead, it held a hint of playfulness.