The weather had been rather bad ever since Ji Hao and his troop left Pu Ban city. The rain practically never stopped.
After purchasing all required supplies in Pu Ban city, Ji Hao didn't stay much longer. He left some people to take care of the Fine Jade Snow Palace, then took his warriors and the new residents of his territory, which he bought from the slave market, heading to Yao Mountain.
When he left the city, Si Wen Ming and many other came to see him off. They organized a large farewell ceremony for Ji Hao, to thank nature and wish him good luck.
Ji Hao sensed the good faith of Si Wen Ming and the others, but at the same time, he also sensed strong viciousness from the crowd of people who stood around and watched the ceremony. Therefore, Ji Hao told his people to take strict precautions all the way. Meanwhile, he remained well-prepared for all kinds of emergency situations himself.
The ceaseless drizzle had been keeping the troop company. The rich soil had become sticky and moist, the fully loaded vehicles ploughing through ditches that had a depth of more than a foot in the ground with the wooden wheels. Horned cattle that had been pulling the vehicles gasped quickly because of the tiredness, while puffs of hot air constantly rose from their nostrils.
The long and huge troop extended for over ten miles, and standing in the middle of the troop, one couldn't see the head or the end of it.
Large groups of livestock let out waves of deep roars while slowly moving forward in the rain. Each one of that livestock had a person to look after it particularly. Young and strong men sat on their mounts, holding long sticks in their hands while whistling shrilly, restraining that livestock which were walking towards wrong directions.
Vehicles were fully loaded with food and supplies. Many children huddled on top of those, piles of supplies, with bodies covered in leathers, falling asleep in the rain as their bodies swayed while the vehicles moved.
Young and healthy women in the troop had been moving back and forth all the time. Following by tamed battle beasts, they yelled at those young people who had been excitedly running around to follow up, keeping anyone from dropping out. From time to time, they checked supplies on vehicles to see if those were all tied firmly up. Meanwhile, they kept eyes on those kids in case those kids accidentally fell off from the vehicles.
Over ten miles away, a wild wolf pack suddenly gushed out from brushwoods, showing their sharp teeth while pouncing on the nearest few large vehicles.
However, when the pack of wolves was still more than a hundred meters away, shrill arrow screams sliced the air open. Following this, hundreds of arrows roared across the air along with cold and fierce airstreams, penetrating the eyeballs of those wolves and deeply piercing into their heads.
A squad of dark-skinned warriors mounted on battle beasts and dashed over. They laughed loudly out while grabbing those wild wolves up and piling them orderly up on vehicles. Hundreds of wild wolves, this meant another sum or meat supply.
Heavy footsteps came from afar. A group of elite warriors who were with heavy armors and long spears strode over. They moved as fast as the wind, and within the blink of an eye, they patrolled from the end to the head of the troop. After reporting to the commander in the front of the troop, this elite group returned speedily, making their round to the end of the troop.
Their top-quality armors and long spears crafted by Xiu Clan master craftsmen had been emitting a cold glow. From time to time, small and dense spell symbols lit up on the surfaces of their armors and weapons, flashing across like bolts of lightning. Anyone with a sharp pair of eyes would know that everyone with this kind of top-grade armament was a Senior-level elite warrior.
Tens of miles away, a group of migratory clan warriors hid in the brushwood and shook their heads disappointedly.
This huge-scale troop was obviously a juicy, fleshy piece of meat to them, but judging from the armaments worn by those guards, migratory clan warriors like themselves were not qualified for targeting such troops.
In the middle of the troop, on a large vehicle that was pulled by over thirty elephant-dragon beasts, Ji Hao sat on top of the shed set on the vehicle with his legs crossed, letting the rainwater pour on his face.
The vehicle was enormous in shape, nearly fifty meters long and fifteen meters wide. The shed-top was all empty except Ji Hao sitting there alone, quickly changing his hand motions. He had been practicing those secret magics Po taught him.
It had been nearly a month since they left Pu Ban city, but according to the current moving speed of this troop, it still required seven months at least for them to arrive at Yao Mountain. One could not rush for this anyway. If Ji Hao were all alone, he would ride on Mr. Crow's back, and the two of them could cover this distance in half a day tops.
Nevertheless, he wasn't alone now. This huge troop extended for over ten miles, and Ji Hao was now the core of this migratory troop. He was the spiritual leader of those slaves, who were all with unsettled minds at the moment. With him in the troop, everyone felt surefooted; everyone worked more efficient and moved faster.
If he weren't in the troop, this migratory troop would immediately become a puff of drifting sands. Probably a big half of those people in this troop would go missing even before they arrived at Yao Mountain.
Therefore, although it was going to be a long journey and the weather had never been good, Ji Hao still stayed with the troop. In addition to this, he gave up on the warm and dry carriage and chose to sit on top of the shed instead. From time to time, he would also take a walk around the troop and let all his people see him.
A series of muffled hoofbeats came. Zhamu, who was mounted on a battle beast, dashed over with a squad of slave warriors.
Gasping for air, Zhamu bowed and saluted to Ji Hao, then said, "My dear master, there're people who had been watching us in the last couple of days. Should I, your loyal slave, go wipe them all out?"
Ji Hao stood up. The shed-top was around ten meters tall. He looked into the distance. Through the dense watery mist, he saw some migratory clan people with ragged looking around. Ji Hao released his spirit power and scanned across those people's bodies, and found that these people barely had powerful ones among them. Therefore, Ji Hao slightly shook his head.
"As long as they don't provoke us, we don't need to pay attention to them. Go warn your warriors, without my order, they are not allowed to harm any human being." Ji Hao lowered his head, looked at Zhamu and said. "Remember, the life of a human being comes with cost of a hundred lives of yours. I can grant you rewards, so I can also put you to death!" Again, Ji Hao warned Zhamu and the group of dark-kind warrior commanders behind him.
Zhamu and the group of dark-kind warrior commanders, who now dared not even breathe loudly, deeply bowed to Ji Hao. After that, they moved around the troop even more diligently than before while loudly commanding warriors under their leads, giving a rigorous protection to the troop.
At the head of the troop, Feng Xing was mounted on a dragon-horse, which had scales on its back and had been discovering the way in front of the troop with a squad of light cavalry.
After moving forwards for tens of miles with the squad of scouts, Feng Xing stopped his mount and slightly patted on its steaming hot neck. He then turned around, looked at the troop which was slowly moving in the rain, like an immense beast, and said in a deep voice, "Everybody, be careful. This is our own troop. Absolutely no careless mistakes are allowed to happen!"
When speaking of 'our own troop,' Feng Xing's face emitted a faint glow.
Ji Hao was his friend, and Yao Mountain was Ji Hao's territory now. Ji Hao had attained the noble title of Earl Yao, and this partially owed to Feng Xing himself. For an unknown reason, Feng Xing caught a sense of belonging to Yao Mountain.
Somehow, Feng Xing felt that this Yao Mountain, a place he had yet to reach, was like his home.
Pressing his fingers on his longbow, Feng Xing laughed at himself. His face was even a bit blushed.
'You're not a kid anymore, where did such a fragile thought come from?' murmured Feng Xing to himself in his head.
'Hm, a thing like 'home,' it should be everywhere you go, shouldn't it?'
Abruptly, a quick series of footsteps came from the front. Feng Xing hurriedly raised his head. Miles away in the rain, over ten people had been running over in a flurry.