This was only the beginning of creeping fear in these freelance martial artists. With the start of this terrifying scene, in moments, another person had fallen. Although the situations of their deaths were all different, it was apparent that they had died of poison.
Across this area that was about a dozen miles wide, in a night's time, it seemed to have turned into an underworld massacre. The one that oversaw harvesting the lives of these freelance martial artists seemed like a ghost where one could not track their whereabouts.
Each of those eight leaders were swift and fierce characters. Despite knowing about getting ambushed by elite warriors, these people all had strong personalities and the most determined among everyone else.
Although they were feeling the uncertainty inwardly, they decided to persist and to defend themselves. The eight of them distributed tasks and gathered freelance martial artists to rearrange the camp. They formed their camps into a circular defense shape that arched to the outside.
This way, regardless of which direction the enemy attacked them, they would observe from any angles. One must say that this method was the most appropriate one they could think of at the current stage.
These eight leaders went around to patrol to set up an example.
"It's truly devilish, when did this Dispersed Praying Mountain had become so terrifying?" Among the eight leaders, one guy with a head shaped like a white gourd cursed.
"Mr. Xue, do you think these hidden assassins are elite warriors of the Xuan Yuan Mound, or of the human countries?" A martial artist dressed in scholar's clothing asked.
Before Mr. Xue had a chance to answer, that guy with the white gourd figure said: "How could such elite warriors exist in the human countries? For sure they had come from the Xuan Yuan Mound. Most likely, they share the same goal as us and seek that Divine Treasure in the human countries. They want to claim it as their own and stopped to kill us."
That scholar appeared to object: "In the end, us martial artists of the Xuan Yuan Mound always held prejudice towards that human countries. We always feel that it is a desolate place and there would not be any elite warriors. In fact, that is untrue. With that Qin Wushuang as an example, didn't he also come out from the human countries?"
"He walked out by relying on the Divine Treasure! This is the reason for us to take on this painstaking journey. When those mole and crickets of the human countries possess the Divine Treasure, it's totally a form of abuse!"
Spittle flew from the mouth of that guy with the short gourd figure as he spoke with confidence.
Suddenly, that Mr. Xue opened his mouth to speak: "This group of people is mysterious as they deliberately did not show their faces and are playing tricks. I assumed that they should not be elite warriors of the human countries. Although the human countries might have the appearance of one or two super geniuses, they would never have several elite warriors at the Profound Void Martial Stage! In the human countries, Perfect Stages are already the highest rank. How could a Profound Stage warrior spend their time in the human countries?"
"In this case, it's still martial artists from the Xuan Yuan Mound. They want to take that Divine Treasure as their own!"
Mr. Xue frowned slightly and said in a deep voice: "If it's a martial artist of the Xuan Yuan Mound, by possessing such great strength, it would not be necessary for them to set up any ambush here. With the time spent here, they would rather climb up first with their quick feet and head directly towards the human countries. After all, strike first and gain the upper hand! Anyone would understand this simple logic."
Yet, that scholar said: "Mr. Xue, have you ever considered that perhaps, they are too powerful and can afford to split into two teams. They would leave one team to deal us, and the other team has already gone ahead to the human countries!"
Mr. Xue gave a long sigh: "If they possess such strength, it's not something a freelance martial artist can fight against. Even the strongest freelance martial artist team will not have such strong and solid power! Unless…"
Mr. Xue did not speak directly the words after that. However, everyone at the scene were intelligent people. Naturally, they had guessed the second half of the sentence after hearing the first half.
It was simple. In the Xuan Yuan Mound, only those sects possessed such strong and solid power. It would not be some third-rate sect that would possess such power.
At least, they must have the power of those second-rate sects. There were only a few powerhouses of this kind across the Xuan Yuan Mound.
At the Orderly Mountain and Judge Mountain Prefecture, besides the Prefecture Lord, there were only two of such powerhouses. One was the Dark Green Cloud Daoist sect of the Orderly Mountain Prefecture, and the other one was the Primary Central Sect of the Judge Mountain Prefecture.
Thinking to this point, everyone's gazes appeared somewhat disappointed. A wave of apparent disappointment was revealed from their complexion.
If it were those major sects stepping out, the result was almost pre-determined. Even if these freelance martial artists had the skill to flip the sky, they would not be able to win against sects.
Even if the major sects plucked a hair from their leg, it was enough to make the freelance martial artists collapse.
Even for a powerhouse like the Dark Green Cloud and Primary Central Sect, it was not strange for them to be tempted by the Divine Treasure. After all, acquiring the Divine Treasure was an insurance. Although possessing the Divine Treasure did not make one equal to another at the Divine Dao stage, having one meant having a form of identity, a form of power.
One must say that this was an endless night. Within this night, the killing never stopped. Even under the surveillance of the eight major leaders, a numerous succession of attacks continually harvested the lives of these freelance martial artists. The massacre continued all the way until dawn and finally, it stopped.
Again, that ruthless warning came again at the break of the dawn: "This night is only a warning. We will not attack during the day. Unless someone tries to cross our forbidden areas. As previously mentioned, those who returns will live. Those who proceed will die! For those who decide to remain, only death awaits!"
If it weren't for last night's bloody examples, these words would absolutely be powerless threats before these freelance martial artists. But after all that had happened, these warnings were like a talisman pressing for one's life and appeared extremely persuasive.
Once it was dawn, without mobilization, close to half of the freelance martial artists started the journey back. When it was noon, about two thirds had left.
By afternoon, as the sky gradually darkened, groups of two or three freelance martial artists also followed the rest to head back.
In the end when the sun finally set, less than twenty people remained.
These twenty people were all arrogant and unyielding elite warriors. All of them felt that they had the strength to protect themselves. Apparently, these twenty people had formed into a single battle team. At this time, those who were originally unfamiliar with each other had formed an alliance.
Apparently, at this crucial point, everyone's team work appeared extremely important.
Indeed, those eight major leaders were swift and fierce as none of them had left.
Presently, these twenty freelance martial artists had gathered. Mr. Xue said: "Everyone, it's clear that this is a conspiracy. And the enemies' power is not enough to take down everyone. Because of this, they have deliberately indulged the sense of mysteriousness and fear. They used guerrilla tactics to break us from each section. Last night, we fell into their trap. Today, we must take the initiative to counterattack! I see that each one at the scene has the power of the Transformation Void Martial Stage. There is even a few Profound Void Martial Stage! If we use everyone's strength well, we will not be taken advantage of. To put it bluntly, even if we are facing the Primary Central sect or the Dark Green Cloud sect, as long as their Sect Leader does not personally come, we will have a chance!"
That scholar also nodded to agree: "Mr. Xue speaks reasonable words. The enemy's tactic of breaking us up for their purpose is to cut us down in pieces, like cutting meat. Just because they do not have the stomach to swallow us in one bite, they are using these threatening tactics to instill fear into our minds. Mr. Xue, we twenty people can divide into five groups! Everyone will have their own responsibilities. Once we track the whereabouts of the enemies, we will go up. As long as we take down one of them, the rest will be easy!"
"Ok, we will divide into five teams. Each team will have four people, easy to manage. And also convenient to make arrangements. Soldiers are valued for their quality rather than their quantity. The lesser numbers we have, the easier it is to make adjustment."
Soon, teams were arranged.
The four people of each teams had no questions. Regardless of that scholar or that Mr. Xue, they had ignored a person.
This person possessed striking facial features. His hair and brows had been dyed jet black and appeared no different than others. However, this person's silver pupils appeared somewhat strange in the darkness.
Indeed, this person was Ying Long, who had been controlled by the venomous insects. Currently, this Ying Long had become a puppet assassin controlled by Moon Palace Jade Hare.
Five teams resided in five tents across north, south, east, west, and centre. The east, south, west, and north directions would have people at all time. The remaining tent of four people would be in charge of patrolling.
Each team would take turns to be on guard.
Each team would routinely patrol for two hours. Soon, the first team had finished patrolling for two hours. They were ready to exchange their duty with the second team.
Per the rule, when the second team went out on patrol and when the first team finished patrolling, they would take the second team's tent.
Then, the third team would replace the second team after they had finished patrolling. The second team would take the tent of the third team.
Such repeated circulation would make sure that someone would always be present at the four locations.
When the first team had returned, they did not see anyone in the second team replacing them. Vividly, Mr. Xue sensed something was wrong.
He quickly walked close to the second tent and used his spiritual perception to investigate. In fact, he did not sense any trace of life. A bloody and deathly air had replaced the sense of life.
When Mr. Xue opened the tent flap, indeed he saw three bodies lying inside the tent. Their circumstances of their death was extremely frightful. It made Mr. Xue immediately remembered the few guys that had died of poison last night, their circumstances resembled the current ones…
A team had four people, yet there were only three bodies!
It meant that one had disappeared.
When the other martial artists saw Mr. Xue standing next to the tent, they knew that something was wrong. All of them ran over and as soon as they saw the scene, each of them had a terrified expression.
Another murder scene, and three had died at once! They had died without any signs or noise as no one even heard them struggling. That situation seemed as if their lives had been stolen away as they dreamed.
Another attack that had shown use of poison!
This level of skill of the poisoner had reached an extent where it was impossible for one to guard against! Indeed, it had been undetected!