Chapter 482 - Get Ready! Raise Your Swords!
Mu Lei was lost in thought. They had not encountered many obstacles along the way.
The Lu Residence’s old butler, Uncle She, followed along on this trip as well. This showed how much the Lu Residence valued this trip. With Uncle She’s presence, the mayors of cities along the way presented them with gifts and favors. Some even sent their men to escort them for some distance. No one dared to offend the Lu Residence at this point in time.
An Muda would not live for much longer. It was still unknown whether or not Madam Ye could withstand Dai Gang. If one day Dai Gang was to annex Beyond Avalon, those who offended the Lu Residence would definitely not come to a good.
As for those petty bandits, the moment Mu Lei released his aura, they were scared witless and ran away.
If not for Lu Chen’s request, Mu Lei wouldn’t have wanted to travel so far just to escort some goods. Lu Chen had saved his life before , hence there was no way he could reject this request.
He squinted his eyes as he sat in the bone basin on the load basin beast’s back. His body was covered by a glossy brown, silk-like hide that swayed along at the load basin beast’s pace.
As sunlight sprinkled over Mu Lei’s brown hide, it gave off layers of gorgeous luster. Mu Lei’s body did not give off the slightest bit of death aura. At this moment, he resembled a lazy cat.
The rest of the convoy tried their best not to make any noise. Mu Lei was not in a good mood.
After a while, a scout returned and reported to Uncle She in a whisper. After Uncle She finished listening to the report, he went to Mu Lei and said, "Master Mu, Lemon Camping Ground is right in front."
"Oh." Mu Lei slowly opened his eyes, sat up straight, and gazed into the distance.
A simple and crude camp appeared on the distant horizon. All he could see was a vague silhouette that looked like a scar on the horizon. If one didn’t have a sharp eyesight or look closely, he or she would not have discovered the camping ground.
Such a simple and crude camp.
He was slightly disappointed.
Along the way, they had heard a lot of news about Lemon Camping Ground. Most of the news came from elementalists who were returning from Lemon Camping Ground. Uncle She paid a lot of attention to this news. He spared no expense and obtained a lot of information.
What they heard the most were praises for the Spear of Heavy Cloud. Every elementalist that they encountered returning from Lemon Camping Ground praised this division to high heaven. They did not even feel sad for not being chosen to join the combat division.
However, the evaluations of the Sword of Lightning were of two extremes. Some felt that Ai Hui truly lived up to the name of Lightning Blade for coming up with something that people had never seen before. However, more people felt that the Sword of Lightning was merely mystifying things on purpose.
Due to the fact that the Sword of Lightning only had 300 men, almost everyone showed disdain for it.
No one, however, dared to mock Ai Hui.
No matter what, Ai Hui was the first Lightning Master, and his status was legitimate. Le Buleng could mock and criticize Ai Hui, but not others. What made them think that they were qualified to do so?
Le Buleng’s sudden appearance had sparked off heated discussions as well. After being missing for so many years, everyone thought he had died, and no one expected for him to still be alive. In the past, a lot of people had not understood why the family head of the Zu family would place Zu Yan in the hands of Le Buleng.
Now, they could see how wise the family head of the Zu family had been in making this decision. As the sole surviving heir of the Zu family, Le Buleng would never abandon Zu Yan no matter what difficulties he faced.
In the eyes of ordinary individuals, Le Buleng’s strength was so-so, but he was definitely a good master who valued relationships more than anything else.
Only someone like Mu Lei, who had been a reputable Master for so many years, knew how formidable and ruthless Le Buleng was. As such, when he heard that Le Buleng was in Lemon Camping Ground, he involuntarily became energized. He finally relaxed after he heard that Le Buleng had left along with the Spear of Heavy Cloud.
Among the current generation of Masters, Le Buleng was one of the few that everyone feared and did not want to face.
Everyone knew that Le Buleng desired to defeat Dai Gang. Initially, all of them mocked him for overestimating his own capabilities, but eventually, no one dared to ridicule him anymore. In the face of Dai Gang, Mu Lei did not even dare to think about going up against him. Le Buleng, however, did not fear Dai Gang or give up on going up against him.
Everyone understood that Le Buleng might not be Dai Gang’s match, but his strength was the closest to Dai Gang’s out of everyone in the world.
"We shall go over then. Everyone, ready up," Mu Lei said plainly.
Actually, even without Mu Lei’s reminder, the rest of the convoy had already readied up. Everyone had travelled a long distance for this journey, and all of them were exhausted. As such, now that they were about to reach their destination, they were very excited. However, when they saw the simple and crude camp in the distance, their hearts sank.
The Lu Residence was almighty in the Jadeite Forest, so their servants experienced luxurious lives. They were extremely disappointed to have come to a dilapidated camp after travelling such a long distance.
Uncle She knew what was going on. With a cold look on his face, he reprimanded the servants, "All of you better prepare yourselves and be well-behaved later. Everyone should know of the Lu Residence's rules. Those who create trouble for me will not be going back."
A cold shiver went down everyone’s spine as they withdrew the irreverent look on their faces.
Uncle She’s position in the Lu Residence was extremely high. He was one of few that the family head trusted deeply.
This time around, for the sake of safety, he had handpicked the guards. More than 10 of the guards were from the Lu Residence, while the rest were from the Lu Residence’s vassal enterprise. He knew all of their profiles clearly. Before they set off on this trip, they had been reminded that those who did not obey Uncle She’s commands would be severely punished.
Given Uncle She’s status and age, he shouldn’t have traveled on this long and arduous journey.
However, he volunteered himself for it since he was very grateful to Ai Hui. If not for Ai Hui, Mingxiu would have met with mishap while making her breakthrough to Master. Furthermore, Ai Hui had become the first ever Lightning Master. This achievement put him on par with Karakorum Polaris.
Ai Hui had already become a Master, and his strength would keep on improving as time passed.
To ordinary individuals, a Master was an eminent entity and a goal that everyone worked hard toward for their entire lives. However, to those aristocratic families, a Master was merely the starting point of an expert’s journey.
Becoming a Master was merely the beginning of the path of an expert.
Only by first becoming a Master could one strive to become a Grandmaster. This was a long and bitter war. In every era, there were countless geniuses, but only a small handful of them could become Grandmasters.
Ai Hui deserved to be valued by the Lu Residence.
At this moment, Mu Lei suddenly let out a yelp as a startled look appeared on his face.
He was not the only one. Uncle She and the rest of the convoy were overwhelmed with shock.
The atmosphere within Lemon Camping Ground’s inner camp was tense.
They were going to try to combine seven swords into one for the first time. This was also the first time they were practicing this kind of technique.
It was only yesterday that Gu Xuan and the rest learned that the sword gleams from the seven sword pagodas could combine together!
Everyone in the Sword of Lightning felt an indescribable excitement.
The sword gleams from the Megrez Sword Pagoda and the Merak Sword Pagoda were already far more powerful than they had expected. If they combined the seven sword gleams into one, how powerful would that be?!
If they could execute it, the result would be overwhelming!
However, the difficulty of combining seven sword gleams into one was extremely high and similarly overwhelming.
The shortest sword pagoda was three levels high, while the tallest sword pagoda was nine levels high. The seven sword pagodas had 42 levels and there were six men per level, adding up to 252 men in total. Previously, everyone was laughing at the fact that 252 was two more than 250. This was such an "auspicious" number.
(In Chinese, a stupid person is known as 252 while "2" means stupid. Therefore, they are laughing at the fact that they are more stupid than a stupid person.)
The 252 men needed to be united in action and unleash their swords at the same time. One could imagine the difficulty of achieving this feat.
Ai Hui’s voice wasn’t loud, but it exploded in everyone’s ears like a sudden clap of thunder. Everyone braced themselves and concentrated their attention. The repetitive training had made them unusually proficient.
"Raise your swords."
Upon hearing Ai Hui’s command, all the elementalists raised their swords at the same time.
Five sword pagodas lit up with a faint glow, but there were two sword pagodas that had not reacted at all. Eventually, the five sword pagodas rapidly dimmed as well.
Even though all of them were mentally prepared for failure, they still did not feel good when they failed.
The pagoda masters who led the two sword pagodas that had not lit up had their faces darken. They had to restrain themselves from cursing roundly.
"We will try again after taking a break."
Ai Hui’s voice was like a basin of cold water that splashed over their heads, dousing the frustration they felt.
Mu Lei subconsciously heaved a sigh of relief. Just now, the crude and dilapidated Lemon Camping Ground had suddenly become a horrifying monster that woke up for a split second.
How long had it been since he had experienced such fear and trepidation?
A similar sigh of relief rang across Mu Lei’s ears, and he awoke with a start. When he turned around and realized it was Uncle She, his tense mind loosened up as he regained his composure. To his astonishment, he realized that a layer of cold sweat had formed on his back.
With a pale face, Uncle She asked with bewilderment, "Master Mu, what was that just now?"
Mu Lei dared not be disrespectful to this old butler. The servants of a powerful family were as mighty as their family head. An old butler like Uncle She held a very high position in the Lu Residence. Furthermore, Uncle She had been very respectful to him throughout the whole trip.
Mu Lei shook his head and replied, "I’m not sure. I have never encountered such an aura before. Look at the clouds in the sky."
Uncle She followed Mu Lei’s finger and looked at the sky. When he discovered that there was a hole in the layer of clouds above Lemon Camping Ground, he was shocked. "Don’t tell me it was caused by that aura?"
"That’s right." Mu Lei had a solemn look on his face. "It was caused by that aura. I have never seen such a cold and dangerous aura. I wonder who it is from?"
"Master Mu, what do you think we should do next?" Uncle She looked at Mu Lei and asked.
Mu Lei was a combat elementalist and the only Master in the convoy. For anything that had to do with combat, Uncle She would let Mu Lei take charge. This was why the both of them had been so amiable throughout the whole journey.
"Is it possible that Le Buleng hasn’t left yet? We should go and take a look first. No matter who it is, it’s unlikely he or she will be hostile toward us," Mu Lei replied with a deep voice.
From his perspective, the only person who could unleash such a powerful aura was Le Buleng. However, whether or not it was Le Buleng, no one would dare to be hostile toward them.
Uncle She felt that what Mu Lei said made sense and regained his composure. He replied, "Let’s go and take a look then."
They spent a lot of time and energy to make the convoy move again. Many load basin beasts were alarmed by what had just occurred. As such, the guards had to exert much effort to pacify the beasts before the convoy could move forward again.
After taking a break, everyone in the Sword of Lightning had relaxed and their frustration had significantly lessened.
The more you hurry, the less progress you’re likely to make. This was what Ai Hui had learned from the past few days. Whenever everyone felt frustrated, giving them a break could yield better results.
Ai Hui’s voice quieted down the seven sword pagodas. Everyone held their breath in deep concentration.
"Raise your swords!"
Two sword pagodas failed to light up.
The convoy that travelled toward Lemon Camping Ground was still traumatized by the previous incident. The guards whispered and discussed the terrifying aura.
Suddenly, the same aura appeared once again without warning.
The pacified load basin beasts neighed in fear and fled in disarray, causing the entire convoy to descend into chaos.
Mu Lei’s heart tightened. However, when he discovered that nothing approached them, he regained a bit of composure.
Uncle She’s face blanched. He quickly ordered his henchmen, "Pull them back. Quickly pull them back… There is still one more load basin beast there."
After a while, the convoy regrouped. Uncle She looked at Mu Lei.
"Continue forward," Mu Lei ordered through clenched teeth.
The seven sword pagodas.
"Raise your swords!"
The convoy descended into chaos.
"Raise your swords!"
The front legs of the load basin beasts gave way, collapsing onto the ground.
Mu Lei’s face turned ashen.