Shi Mu thought something as he looked around. He then murmured to himself.
Suddenly, there was a surge in the surrounding mist. Then, virtual shadows of two other pythons broke into this chaotic world.
The body of one of the pythons was wrapped in a mass of white light. There was a pair of wings on its back. Its overwhelming strength couldn’t be considered inferior to that of the three-headed python.
The other one was an even bigger python. Its body was covered with green scales. It was twice as big as the three-headed python. There was an extremely formidable aura around its body. It seemed to be far above a Xian Tian level beast soul. Surprisingly, it was an Earth-ranked ominous beast soul.
"It’s not good. These two are Zha Gu's beast souls." Shi Mu was flabbergasted. He then recalled the moments before he had lost his consciousness. But, he could only vaguely remember that scene.
However, the shadows of the two pythons didn’t give him time to ponder over this matter. And, they pounced towards him in a threatening manner. They then opened their mouths, and bit at Shi Mu, who was in the form of a mass of white light.
The three-headed python standing beside Shi Mu issued a loud roar. The size of its body was relatively smaller than the red and green pythons’. But, it was courageous-enough to swoop down towards them. It rushed forward, and blocked the two ominous pythons.
The shadows of the three pythons coiled around each other, and started to bite each other.
The built of the three-headed python looked relatively smaller. But, it didn’t show any sign of weakness in the battle since it was blessed with three heads. However, it didn’t take long before it fell into a disadvantageous situation because it had to deal with two enemies at the same time. The radiance of its body dimmed at a very fast speed; so much so that it could be seen with naked eyes.
Shi Mu became anxious as he witnessed this scene. But, he couldn’t come forward to extend his help owing to his state.
The green-scaled python swayed, and whipped its tail severely on the three-headed python’s body. The three-headed python was sent flying along with the red python.
The green-scaled python turned its head. An ominous gleam streaked across its eyes. Then, it swooped towards the mass of white light that was the incarnated form of Shi Mu.
It seemed that the three-headed python wanted to rush back to Shi Mu’s side. But, its body was tightly bound by the red python. So, it was unable to break itself free.
The green-scaled python opened its mouth, and bit towards the mass of white light. In fact, it exerted its full might to tear him apart.
Suddenly, Shi Mu’s heart was struck by a sense of apprehension. He had a bad premonition of an imminent danger. He was frightened that he would surely lose his sanity if the mass of white light was gobbled-up by the python.
Shi Mu’s spirit shuddered with a fit of terror. An extremely vicious aura spread from the depth of his spirit.
Then, a streak of white light darted out from the depths of the mass of white light, and got condensed into a fuzzy shadow of a white ape.
The green-scaled python’s eyes were smeared with an extremely frightened look as its eyes fell on the white ape. It immediately turned around, and dashed away.
The white ape’s shadow raised its head, and issued a loud roar. Then, it pounded its fist towards the green-scaled python in a ferocious manner.
The green-scaled python felt a little fluctuation behind its body. Then, a mass of misty-white whirlpool emerged behind it. The python whirled around, and issued a frightened scream. But, its body shattered into pieces, and transformed into a group of green fireflies. Those fireflies began to spin along with the white whirlpool.
The red python wasn’t far from the white ape. It seemed to have sensed the pressure of the white ape’s domineering aura. So, its body turned stiff.
But, the three-headed python seemed to be unaffected. An ominous glint flashed through its eyes. Then, its three heads began to nip at the body of the red python. It exerted its full might to rip the red python apart. The red python’s body was soon torn into three pieces.
The white ape’s shadow waved its arms. It seemed as if it wanted to do something. But then, its stature turned fuzzy, and began to sway from side-to-side. It gradually dissipated along with the white whirlpool that was near its body. Only the green fireflies remained floating in the air.
Shi Mu was struck dumb as he witnessed this scene. He felt that he had grasped a little clue. But, he couldn’t figure out what it was.
The three-headed python issued a few cheerful roars in excitement. Then, it swallowed down all the severed pieces of the red python. After that, its middle head issued a suction force in order to absorb that floating group of green fireflies. These fireflies had emerged from the shattered pieces of the green-scaled python. Its three heads had soon gobbled-up that group of fireflies.
A layer of black light gleamed on the surface of the three-headed python’s body as it absorbed two beast souls in succession. Then, a black light flashed beside one of its heads. After that, the fourth head of the python emerged.
But, it wasn’t the end. Then, the fifth head also began to emerge.
A meatball could be seen bulging on its neck. It seemed as if the fifth head would sprout out at any moment.
Shi Mu’s heart brimmed with happiness as he saw this.
But then, a cloud of darkness spread before his eyes, and he lost his consciousness once again.
Shi Mu regained his consciousness after an unknown period of time. A burst of boisterous voices fell into his ears as he sobered-up. The clamorous sounds made his brows crease into a frown.
"... You’re indeed a formidable incarnation. I’m also Master Shi Tou’s spirit pet. But, I’m like a light of a firefly before the magnificent radiance of the bright moon if compared with you...
"I’m just a small and ugly parrot in front of your dazzling brilliance... But, my inconsequential existence is a tiny bit useful to my master.
"So, can you take the soul-flame in your hand a little bit away from me… Otherwise, my fragile body will be roasted... ah!"
Parrot Cai was the obvious source of this clamorous voice. Its voice was permeated with a touch of flattery. But, it was also issuing mournful screams from time-to-time.
Shi Mu opened his eyes. But, a fit of exhaustion raided him, and made his body extremely heavy.
He mustered his energy, and turned his head. He then looked around, and found himself lying on the ground. Zha Gu's headless body lay on the ground near him.
Yan Luo stood to one side.
It seemed to have restored its body by now. Even the aura around its body seemed much more formidable than before.
Yan Luo’s shattered left arm also seemed to have made a full recovery since it held Cai’s feet with it. A small cluster of white flames could be seen in its right hand. It was swinging the parrot’s body… as if it playing with him. But, Cai looked scared, and was shouting in fear. It could neither flutter its wings, nor could he try to fly away since its feet had been caught by Yan Luo.
Yan Luo noticed that Shi Mu had woken-up. It put away the soul-flame from its right hand, and threw Cai away. Then, its stature flashed, and appeared in front of Shi Mu.
Shi Mu was dumbfounded. Yan Luo had its back towards him. So, it was obvious that it couldn’t have seen him awake.
The soul-flames in Yan Luo’s eye-sockets looked dark-blue in color. Moreover, there was a touch of purple amid the blue color.
"Yan Luo, you..." Shi Mu was familiar with the changing color of Yan Luo’s soul-flames. So, he had realized that Yan Luo had stepped into a new realm.
Yan Luo was now at the consummate stage of the Xian Tian realm. Moreover, it seemed that it might proceed further, and step into the realm of an Earth-ranked warrior soon enough.
This was a good thing for Shi Mu. But, the speed of Yan Luo’s attainment was too frightening to believe. He couldn’t help but feel a little anxious about it.
Yan Luo’s soul-flames flickered as it looked at Shi Mu from top to bottom. It seemed as if it was feeling a little relieved.
Then, it nodded towards Shi Mu. It didn’t wait for Shi Mu to speak anything, and a burst of black smoke emerged on the surface of its body. Then, its stature turned fuzzy, and it vanished into thin air. It seemed to have returned to the Dead Spirit World.
Shi Mu was taken aback.
"Shi Tou, you woke-up. I was extremely worried about you." Cai swooped over, and landed on Shi Mu’s shoulder as he saw that Yan Luo had disappeared.
"Well, there’s nothing to be worried about. But, I want to take rest. You go, and keep a watch on me," Shi Mu said.
Cai wanted to say something. But, it saw that Shi Mu’s entire body was drenched in blood, and his face looked exhausted. So, it had no other option but to comply. It fluttered its wings, and flew high up in the sky.
Shi Mu sat down cross-legged. Then, he started to practice his cultivation art. He had suffered severe damages on many places in his body. Moreover, the consumption of his Real Qi seemed quite severe. He also felt an acute pain in his head due to excessive loss of his spirit power. Fortunately, none of his injuries was fatal.
Shi Mu took a deep breath, and continued to sit with his legs crossed for a while. Then, he stood-up, and walked over to Zha Gu’s corpse.
He then picked-up the green whip that lay nearby. His heart brimmed with happiness as he examined it.
The magic formula engraved on the surface of the green whip seemed a lot more complicated than his own meteoric iron black blade’s formula. Surprisingly, it was a high-grade magic tool.
Zha Gu’s knife also seemed to be a rare magic weapon.
Shi Mu didn’t need this knife for his own use. But, he still took it so that he could exchange it for a considerable amount of money.
There was also a beast soul bag lying on the ground. But, it was completely empty.
Shi Mu was dumbfounded. He associated this incident to the sudden advancement of Yan Luo’s cultivation, and understood the whole story.
He collected the three magic tools. Then, he continued to fumble with Zha Gu’s body. Suddenly, his eyes got pulled towards Zha Gu’s left hand.
There was a greyish-black ring on Zha Gu’s finger. It was emitting faint rays of light.
Shi Mu’s eyes lit-up. He took the ring off his hand. He then poured a drop of his blood on it. After that, he poured his spirit into the ring in order to explore it.
This ring was a storage magic tool like he had expected. However, the space inside it was a lot smaller than his own storage ring. But, it was still a rare treasure.
Shi Mu’s face beamed with an ecstatic look. Almost fifty percent of this storage ring was already filled with various kinds of things.
He waved his hand, and several things appeared on the ground with a crashing sound.
Most of the things were various kinds of top-grade ores.
Shi Mu had a very deep understanding of ores. He knew that there were all kinds of rare and precious ores inside this ring that could be used to cast magic weapons. Moreover, the value of these ores was considerably high.
There were also some other things apart from the ores.
There was a stack of gold leaves, a few bottles of pills, some ancient books, and a jade slip. Dozens of spirit stones were also present therein.
Shi Mu picked-up a few books along with the jade slip, and put them aside. He wanted to inspect something else first.
The monetary worth of those gold leaves was perhaps not less than three million. Moreover, a few bottles were loaded with some precious restoration pills. There was also a bottle that was loaded with detoxifying pills.
Shi Mu knew only a little about the pills that belonged to the barbarian race. In fact, he could differentiate them in a very vague manner…
There were two middle-ranked spirit stones amid a dozen or more spirit stones. One of them was a water-attribute, and the other one was a fire-attribute spirit stone.
Shi Mu stacked-up these things into his own storage ring. Then, he picked-up a few ancient books, and glanced through them.
The content of these ancient books didn’t seem to be special. These books were basically about geography, the unofficial history of the continent, and so on…
Shi Mu finally picked-up the jade slip, and poured his spirit into it. His face soon sparkled with joy.
The jade slip was a map – the map of the barbarian Wasteland. It was an extremely detailed map that illustrated the minute details about the Black Rock Mountains.
Shi Mu recovered his spirit after a moment.
It would be much easier for him to pass through the barbarian Wasteland with the help of this map.
He exhaled a deep breath, and calmed his mind down. Then, he waved his hand, and received the remaining things.
After that, he burnt down Zha Gu’s body to ashes. He then looked for a secure place, and sat down cross-legged.
He took out a jade bottle and a healing pill from his clothes. He then stuck two rejuvenation charms on his chest’s wound. After that, he sat down cross-legged once again.
In the Dead Spirit World…
Yan Luo stood still in the center of a small basin. It held a bone-spear in its hand. The soul-flames were flickering within its eye sockets.
Several piles of bones could be seen all over the place. In fact, there were two-hundred or more heaps in the surroundings.
Most of these bones still looked complete. Moreover, each pile could form a complete human skeleton. These skeletons didn’t seem to have been defeated in a battle.
A row of blood-moons were suspended in the dark sky. The number of the blood moons was still eleven. But, one of the moons looked a little bleak in comparison with the others.
An hour later…
Shi Mu stood on a slope of the hill. He was gazing far into the western horizon.
The golden setting-sun hung low on the horizon – like a disc. It was sprinkling its soft and warm golden luster across the world.
There were black-colored rolling hills behind him. They seemed to be bathing in the afterglow of the setting sun. It looked as if they were clad in a layer of bright-golden radiance.
"Master, you’re awesome. You exterminated the Earth-ranked powerhouse. You’re ten times more formidable than the obese man Ju. Oh… no. In fact, you’re hundred times more formidable..." Cai said while fluttering its wings on Shi Mu’s shoulder.
"It wasn’t me who killed that man. I’ve told you this several times."
"I know that the human-skeleton has killed him. But, it’s the same thing. I think I’m following the right person."
"It has a name. It’s called Yan Luo." Shi Mu retracted his vision from the distance. He then started to walk down the slope.
"I saw that the skeleton was holding you when I first arrived. It really scared the hell out of me."
"Be careful. It might chide you in the future."
"... Yan Luo, belongs to the Dark Territory, right?"
"What’s this Dark Territory? Oh, by the way, Zha Gu once spoke the words – ‘Dark Moon Disciple’. What is this thing?"
"What reward will I get if I tell you about it?" The parrot moved, and took a more comfortable position on Shi Mu’s shoulder.
"There’s no reward. But, I know that you can’t control yourself from spitting it out." Shi Mu stamped his foot on the ground, and jumped in the air.
"I’ll certainly refrain myself," the parrot replied.
Shi Mu didn’t say anything further. He continued with his journey in a silent manner.
A little time passed. The parrot opened his mouth. It seemed as if it wanted to say something, but it remained silent. It continued to do this for some time. And, it swallowed its words every time it opened its mouth.
"Cai, was Young Master Ju a Deep Moon Believer?" Shi Mu asked while passing through the pieces of rocks.
"Uh... I’m not telling you."
"Fine. Forget about it."
The color of the sky was darkening. The setting sun gradually turned into a pale-yellow ball of light. The half-red and half-yellow afterglow of the setting sun could be seen across the horizon. A bird and a man could be seen advancing towards a west-ward direction while quarrelling along the way.