Shi Mu’s mood became funny due to Cai’s behavior.
However, he had brought this Cai with him. So, he didn’t have any other choice but to cup his hands towards Jin Xiao Chai. He then spoke in an attempt to resolve the matter, "Master Jin, please calm down. Your position is very honorable. So, I presume that you wouldn’t fuss over this useless parrot."
"Oh, you’re right. An elder’s position is extremely honorable. But, you also heard the words it just spoke, right?" Jin Xiao Chai rolled her eyes. She then put down the whip from her hand, and said with a smile.
Shi Mu didn’t reply. But, a noisy voice resounded, "Shi Tou, you can’t listen to this woman. She wants to kill your Cai for sure. Cai is very obedient. And, Cai’s flesh smells very bad. Its taste isn’t good either." The parrot lifted one of its wings, and put it in front of one of its eye. The traces of evil look had disappeared from its eyes as it looked towards Jin Xiao Chai. It then argued in a low voice.
Shi Mu became speechless. He could see that Jin Xiao Chai’s eyes were blazing with fury. It seemed that she was about to explode. Therefore, Shi Mu said in a stern voice before she could say anything, "Cai, Master Jin is an Elder Master of my sect. Her cultivation is much higher than that of mine. So, I can’t do anything if she wants to kill you and stew you in a soup."
"Master Jin is superior. Cai was just joking with you. You mustn’t take offense. You’re so pretty and intelligent. Moreover, you’re such a brilliant Spirit Magician. How are you so fond of this Shi Tou…?" A frightened look appeared in the parrot’s eyes as it heard this. It then hurriedly spoke these words to please Jin Xai Chai.
"You’re being troublesome again. You don’t need to bother Master Jin. She has told you in advance that she would pull your feathers." Shi Mu stared at Cai. And, this made Cai swallow the next word.
The rest of the three people wanted to laugh. But, how could they commit an offense in front of the two of them? So, they didn’t laugh, and merely lowered their heads. However, their faces became red because of holding back their laughter.
"Let it be. This parrot is very tactful. I’m a person of great moral stature. So, I’ll forget the offenses committed by one of low moral stature. I forgive you. Shi Mu, you come over. I want to talk to you about something." Jin Xiao Chai titled the corner of her mouth as she heard Cai’s flattering words. She seemed to be enjoying this. She then collected her whip, and addressed Shi Mu. After that, she turned over, and sat on her dark-red horse. She turned around her horse, and started to advance out of the valley.
Shi Mu also turned around, and sat on his Black Wildebeest. Then, he moved his horse, and started to ride behind Jin Xiao Chai. Mo Ning and the other two people also got on their horses, and started to follow after them.
Shi Mu and Jin Xiao Chai eventually started to move side-by-side on their horses.
"Shi Mu, you went to the Holy Mountain as a bodyguard of Princess Huo Wu’s. So, you must’ve become quite familiar with the Wasteland of the barbarian race, right?" Jin Xiao Chai asked.
"I had stayed in the Wasteland for several months. But, to say that I’m familiar with that place is out of question. I can only say that I have a little understanding of it," Shi Mu replied.
"We’re going to the Heavenly Demon Sect this time. We might have to go through the sea race. But, the coastal situation is extremely intense at the moment. So, we have no other choice but to take another route. Therefore, we might try to pass through the Wasteland of barbarian race. The route of this journey is dependent upon you to decide and arrange," Jin Xiao Chai said.
"Yes." Shi Mu’s complexion became dignified.
Jin Xiao Chai nodded. She then pulled the reins of her horse. And, she went speeding towards the mouth of the valley on her dark-red horse.
Shi Mu and the other three people increased the speed of their horses as they saw this. They then started to follow the dark-red horse.
The fog from the mountain-valley had scattered by this time. The sun was rising from the east. The glaring sunshine was pouring down and sprinkling everywhere. Everything in the valley was shining and glittering.
The troop consisted of five people including Shi Mu. And, they forged ahead towards the rising sun. Their horses had soon left the valley. They then started to advance towards the west. And, their figures soon transformed into four black dots.
Ten days later…
The group arrived at the frontier of the border of the Yan Nation. They had come very far by now. A place between two small mountains could be seen in front of them. There was also a medium-sized barrack of the barbarian race in front of them.
A flag had been raised on a very long pole beside the barrack. The flag was fluttering in the wind. It had an eye-catching red scorpion on it. This barrack had blocked the entrance of the mountain; it seemed to be a check-point. The people of both the races were to be questioned if they needed to pass through the border here.
Inside the tent of the barbarian barrack’s leader…
A barbarian man of about thirty years of age sat upright on the owner’s seat; he had a yellow-ish complexion. There was a mark of a blazing and fierce scorpion on his left arm. He looked towards the group standing in front of him with an expressionless face.
The aura on his body was strong. His cultivation seemed to be at the middle-level of the Xian Tian realm.
"Your Excellency is a powerhouse of your Sect. The skills of your subordinates don’t seem to be feeble either. May I ask why you wish to enter the Wasteland?" the yellow-skinned man sized Jin Xiao Chai up and down. He then asked without any politeness.
"Lord Du Tong, we’ve to go to the Blue Unicorn Tribe in order to purchase a herbal medicine as per the orders of the Sect. It’s a safety issue of the Wasteland. I think you know about it," Jin Xiao Chai’s complexion didn’t change as she said.
The Blue Unicorn Tribe was a small tribe of peaceful barbarians, and was at a great distance from their present location. It was located beside the Iron Mountain in the depth of the Wasteland. It was quite famous as it had rare herbal medicines in abundance. There were many vicious barbarian tribes on the way to this tribe.
Jin Xiao Chai and Shi Mu used this as an excuse as they had discussed this in advance.
"Pay a hundred-thousand silvers. Then, you can go." The yellow-skinned man thought for a while. He then nodded and said.
"Thank you very much, Lord Tong," Jin Xiao Chai replied with a smile.
She then moved her hand, and took out several silver notes. She then handed them over to the yellow-skinned man.
The yellow-skinned man accepted them without any trace of politeness. Then, Jin Xiao Chai and the others bid them farewell, and left.
The tent soon became quiet. The yellow-skinned man opened the covering veil of the tent, and looked towards the silhouettes of Shi Mu and other people as they faded away into the distance. His eyes exposed a strange look.
After two days…
It was night. Shi Mu sat cross-legged in a tent; he was meditating. It seemed as if he wasn’t breathing.
The parrot Cai was also in an intoxicated sleep nearby him.
Suddenly, Shi Mu opened his eyes. He then moved his right hand, and a black light flashed. Then, the black blade appeared in his hand.
A strange sound of tearing of a cloth echoed.
Then, a young calf-sized shadow entered from the direction of the sound. After that, a gale of fishy smell rushed towards Shi Mu.
Shi Mu got-up from the ground. The black blade-light rose-up in his hand at the same time. Then, a heavy rain of blood got sprinkled around.
"Ah!" an odd, deep, and loud sound was heard.
The invading shadow had been beheaded by the black blade.
Shi Mu took a closer look. The shadow turned out to be a creature with the head of a long lizard, the body of a wolf, and the tail of a poisonous scorpion. It was a strange and vicious beast.
"Scorpion tail beast!" Shi Mu’s pupils shrank.
He vaguely remembered that it was a kind of a vicious beast that lived in flocks. Its cultivation wasn’t too high. But, its tail contained dangerous poison which was hard to deal with.
"Quack! Quack! What kind of a strange thing is this? It’s too dangerous." The parrot had been sent into panic. So much so that it had lost its head in fear. So, it shouted in an odd manner. It then flapped its wings, and flew out from the place from where the tent had been torn.
Suddenly, a few strange sounds of giggling were heard. Then, three shadows rushed from three different directions at a very fast speed.
Shi Mu shook his right arm. Three black blade-Qi went out while tearing the air. They flashed, and penetrated the bodies of the shadows.
The three shadows were hit in midair. They then started to issue mournful beast howls.
Shi Mu’s figure flashed, and appeared out of the tent. Then, he swept his vision. Jin Xiao Chai, Mo Ning and others were already outside their tents. They were fighting together against the shadows with the weapons in their hands.
These scorpion tail beasts could be seen everywhere in the camp. They were widely scattered in large numbers in the west. And, they were rushing towards this place. In fact, they were more than a thousand in number!
Jin Xiao Chai’s body was shrouded by black lights that had been formed by the whip-shadows. And, black lights of concentrated real Qi were flying out from her long whip in a continuous manner. Suddenly, the flesh of a scorpion tail beast exploded by the whip. It was then reduced to a pulp of meat.
Mo Ning was completely shrouded by layers of white drizzling clouds and mists. He was rapidly rushing towards the scorpion tail beasts without making any noise.
Bai Shui Xiu was holding a blue magic cane in her hand. Her entire body was covered in a layer of blue lights. She waved her lily-white hand. Then, five pikes of water-light appeared out of nowhere. And, two scorpion tail beasts were nailed to the ground with a flash.
Qian Xiong was holding a black iron truncheon in his hands. Two black lights were dancing around his body. The black light rushed across, and broke the muscles of a scorpion tail beast.
"Most of these scorpion tail beasts have the strength of only a Hou Tian initial level. But, their claws, teeth, and tails are highly toxic. Be careful! Don’t run into them!" A flame flashed on Shi Mu’s blade. It then transformed into layers of clouds of fire, and shielded him. Shi Mu warned everyone at the same time.
Everyone’s heart trembled with fear as they heard Shi Mu’s warning.
"Everyone, protect your horses quickly." Suddenly, Jin Xiao Chai thought of something. She then rapidly swept towards the east side of the camp. She warned everyone at the same time.
Shi Mu and others advanced towards the place where they had put their horses.
Shi Mu and the others were on the eastern side of their camp in order to protect their horses. Five or six-hundred dead bodies of the scorpion tail beasts were lying upside down in the surroundings. The area was flowing with a river of blood.
The remaining three or four-hundred scorpion tail beasts finally exposed fear in their eyes. ‘Chi! Chi!’ They then turned around, and started to escape in all directions.
"Quack! Quack!…" The parrot came flying out of somewhere.
It circled around Shi Mu’s head. Then, it flew towards a place in the west.
Shi Mu twitched the corner of his eye. He then rushed like a great arrow, and started to follow after the parrot. Jin Xiao Chai and others stared blankly. After that, they started to follow after Shi Mu.
After a quarter-of-an-hour…
There was a sloping place far from their camps in the west direction.
A barbarian camp was set-up several dozen feet away from the sloping place. A bonfire was burning in that place.
The yellow-skinned man of the barbarian race – who they had met on the checkpoint two days ago – was sitting near the bonfire with a gloomy face. He was listening to the report of a totem warrior of the barbarian race. Twenty or more barbarian totem warriors stood beside him.
A giant twenty-feet-long scorpion tail beast lay prone beside the body of the man. It was emitting a vigorous and imposing aura of Hou Tian consummate stage.
Suddenly, the yellow-skinned barbarian stood-up. He turned his head, and looked outside the camp. He then shouted.
"Lord Du Tong, you’ve commanded these vicious beasts to attack us. Can it be that you want to provoke a war between the two races?" Jin Xiao Chai held her whip in her hand. She walked in with a cold and gloomy look on her face.
Shi Mu and the other three people also held their weapons. They came over with a murderous look on their faces. Then, they stood beside Jin Xiao Chai in a row.
"Oh, it was you people…? It’s just a coincidence. The Wasteland of our barbarian race is never tranquil at nights. It’s quite common that vicious beasts roam around… " A light flashed in the eyes of the yellow-skinned man. He then said with a smile.
He hadn’t yet finished speaking when an ear-piercing and sky-breaking ‘bang’ sound was heard.
Jin Xiao Chai swung the whip in her hand. Then, a whip-shadow – as thick as a thigh – appeared out of nowhere. It then went coiling towards the yellow-skinned barbarian – like a python.