Published at 20th of November 2020 10:50:50 AM
But with each sway, the Flaming Lion King’s eyes shivered, as if it saw its end .
It then took back its claw and sped away in the form of a ball of fire . It scampered off with speed rather than dignity, so much so that it was even close to falling at some point .
A 6th level spiritual beast, a king in the Allbeast Mountain Range, was now fleeing like a kitty while trembling from every joint .
Frowning, Zhuo Fan touched his forehead but the azure flame had already hidden inside .
He only felt a faint warmth and concluded that it was connected to the expert who had appeared in his consciousness and touched him there .
“Hey, Zhuo Fan,” Xie Tianyang shook his arm as he questioned, “B-be honest with me, are you absolutely positive that you are human?”
“Cut the crap, what else would I be, a demon?” Zhuo Fan slapped Xie Tianyang’s hand away .
“I’ve never seen a human scare a 6th level spiritual beast with just a look . ” Xie Tianyang took deep breaths to calm down and continued, “Did you see how scared it was when it saw you? As if afraid you would eat it whole . ”
“As brothers, you owe me an explanation . How many secrets are you hiding?”
Zhuo Fan rolled his eyes then turned to Xue Ningxiang, “We were never brothers!”
Xie Tianyang froze, then he showed an awkward smile . But he was becoming more and more curious about Zhuo Fan .
Coming next to Xue Ningxiang, they saw her tear-stained face as she looked at the Thunder Skylark . The lion didn’t take its life but the birdie was too far gone to be saved .
Unlike Xie Tianyang, she ignored the fleeing Flaming Lion King and inspected the birdie’s wounds .
“It won’t make it . ” Zhuo Fan sent his Yuan Qi to check its state then sighed .
His plan on getting a Thunder Skylark went up in smoke .
“Big brother Zhuo, can you help her?” Xue Ningxiang looked at him with teary eyes but he could only sigh .
As a Demonic Emperor, he had plenty of ways, but the current him was weak .
Xue Ningxiang began crying her heart out, tears falling down the Thunder Skylark’s face .
The bird opened its eyes and looked elsewhere .
Xue Ningxiang noticed and spotted an egg not too far . But the egg was burnt black .
The Thunder Skylark gave its all before but was incapable of stopping every fireball .
“It wants her young . Let’s go find them . ” Xue Ningxiang cried .
Zhuo Fan and Xie Tianyang searched around and soon gathered four scorched and lifeless eggs .
“Wasn’t there one more?” Xue Ningxiang nervously asked .
The two shook their heads . The last one was lost . They couldn’t find it anywhere .
Xue Ningxiang was sorrowful, kneeling before the Thunder Skylark as she sobbed, “Forgive us, we are the ones who hurt you . ”
The Thunder Skylark was always watching the four scorched eggs with teary eyes . Then, her eyes flashed and moved her great body .
From below her, the last egg rolled out . It was intact but still had a few scorch marks on it .
Zhuo Fan looked long at the Thunder Skylark and secretly nodded .
Despite being forced to run around by the Flaming Lion King, it knew what it had to do . It made sure to protect one egg without anyone knowing .
And when it collapsed, it used its body to hide the egg . So that even if it was killed, the egg would survive . It gave its life to protect its young .
Thinking about this, Zhuo Fan developed a deep respect for the bird .
With a cry, the Thunder Skylark stared at Zhuo Fan or, more specifically, his forehead . Then it turned to its egg with a hopeful gaze .
“You want me to take it?” Zhuo Fan assumed .
It nodded, eyes filled with warmth for the egg .
Zhuo Fan picked it up and sighed, “It is badly burnt and, even if it hatches, it won’t live for long . Unless . . ”
He whispered the rest into the Thunder Skylark’s ear . It was first startled then nodded in gratitude .
Turning to her young, the Thunder Skylark closed her eyes in peace . She could now rest easy knowing Zhuo Fan would look after it .
Xue Ningxiang saw its life fade away and was crying her heart out .
Zhuo Fan and Xie Tianyang sighed . They didn’t foresee her being so compassionate even towards a spiritual beast .
They would, at most hold some respect, but never be so heartbroken about it .
“Uh, Ning’er, it won’t come back . Don’t feel too sad about it . ” Zhuo Fan consoled .
“Yeah, I never knew you’d be so compassionate towards this Thunder Skylark just after meeting it once!” Xie Tianyang laughed dryly and scratched his head, not knowing how to comfort the girl .
Xue Ningxiang wiped her tears and nose, “Y-you guys misunderstood . It is a sad birdie but I’m not crying for it . I was reminded of my home . Her appearance made me recall my dad protecting me every step of the way, taking care of me… “
The other two smiled dejectedly .
[It seems this girl was reminiscing . No wonder she was so touched . ]
“Uh, since it’s not for the bird, then I will take the Thunder Skylark’s body . ” Zhuo Fan felt awkward as he stashed the body in his ring, but Xue Ningxiang just nodded .
Xie Tianyang however, was aflame in anger, “Hey, why do you get to have a whole 6th level spiritual beast’s body?”
A spiritual beast was a treasure in and of itself . The 6th level spiritual beast bodies, in particular, made for great refining materials . Even the seven houses seldom got such an item and Xie Tianyang regarded it greatly .
Looking askance at him, Zhuo Fan stated, “You saw it giving me its egg . Its body is the same . You stay here with Ning’er, I’ll be right back . ”
He left before Xie Tianyang could argue . Xie Tianyang wanted to follow Zhuo Fan but seeing Ning’er, he stayed . He was worried for her safety, leaving her all alone in the woods was not wise . Though it made little difference if he was there too .
In a secluded spot, Zhuo Fan took out the egg, the Thunder Skylark’s body, and some black rocks .
He began circulating his Yuan Qi and his hand burned scarlet .
This was a cultivator’s most basic Yuan Qi flame . Weak in battle, but useful in refining . And those black rocks were spacial stones used in making storage rings .
These rocks were very rare even with all the spacial rock mines in control of the seven houses and the Imperial family . But thanks to Veiled Dragon Pavilion and Imperial family endorsing the Luo clan, he got his hand on a few .
And right now, he was planning on refining a beast holding ring .
It was far more complex to refine than a storage ring and the great sects had a tight lock on any refining methods regarding them . Furthermore, it could even store spiritual energy .
As spiritual beasts were nurtured by the spiritual energy of the world, they were the best ingredient for refining items .
Case in point, this egg came from the Thunder Skylark, and its spiritual energy would help it recover . If not for this, Zhuo Fan was unsure if he could even hatch it .
Now that the Thunder Skylark was dead, he desperately needed to hatch the egg and make it his demonic creature in order to enter the Lightning Canyon .
For this, Zhuo Fan spoke a few words to the dying Thunder Skylark . And it agreed once it knew its broken body could help her young live .
Either way, this was Zhuo Fan’s way of showing his respect for the mother . Also, he would’ve taken this course of action regardless of her decision .
Zhuo Fan pointed and the flame towered, fusing the ingredients with high-speed hand-signs and a smile of satisfaction .
He was close to fulfilling his objective .
In the dead of night, stars glittered with Xue Ningxiang and Xie Tianyang watching them bored out of their mind . As this was Thunder Skylark’s territory, no 6th level spiritual beast would wander here . It was the safest place for them .
A sound broke the silence and Zhuo Fan appeared next to them .
Xue Ningxiang ran to him in glee as Xie Tianyang looked him up and down, “What did you do with the corpse?”
Shrugging, Zhuo Fan was blunt, “Tore it in eight and used it . ”
Xue Ningxiang was startled by his reply and Xie Tianyang rushed to placate her, “Ning’er, it’s alright . The bodies of spiritual beasts are handled like this . But I don’t know what he refined using it . ”
Xie Tianyang knew Zhuo Fan was an array master and an alchemist, so being a refiner on top wasn’t that far fetched . As Zhuo Fan was gone for a day, he assumed Zhuo Fan had refined something .
“Hey, did you know today is Ning’er’s 16th birthday? She was reminded of her family when the Thunder Skylark protected her egg and it made her cry . ”
Zhuo Fan took a long look at Xue Ningxiang, who was blushing with a lowered head .
“Hhha, since it’s her birthday, then I will give her a present . ” Zhuo Fan revealed a ring that had lightning running across it . Then he took Xue Ningxiang’s hand and inserted the ring on her finger .
“This is the storage ring I refined from the Thunder Skylark, Thunder Ring . I have one and you the other . They both are made as one, and are connected with each other . ”
Zhuo Fan raised his hand and sparks flashed across his ring .
Xue Ningxiang was overjoyed inside and blushed as she extended her fist with the ring on it . Zhuo Fan did the same with his hand and the two rings let out crackling sounds .
Xie Tianyang was filled with envy and roared, “Zhuo Fan, g-give me one too . ”
“I’m out!” Zhuo Fan deadpanned, “Is it your damn birthday too?”
“No, but you have to give me one! Or… the two of you… a pair of rings . ” Xie Tianyang’s face burned hot . He no longer cared about the value of the Thunder Ring, but that Zhuo Fan and Xue Ningxiang wore a unique pair of rings…
Seeing through him, Zhuo Fan sighed inwardly, “We’ve been through thick and thin together, so of course, I have one for you . ”
Zhuo Fan then tossed him a ring . Xie Tianyang put it on in glee then made a fist bump with Xue Ningxiang .
Each of them got a Thunder Ring which would only react when another was around .
Zhuo Fan spoke seriously, “What gift did you give Ning’er?”
Xie Tianyang started and scratched his head from having nothing of value on him . Suddenly, he turned to the Burrowing Mouse and pointed, “Ning’er likes playing with it, so I’m giving it to her . ”
“Get lost, it has long stopped being yours . ” Zhuo Fan jabbed .
Xie Tianyang snapped in anger, “Isn’t it all your doing?”
The two began quarreling while Xue Ningxiang stood content at the side with a smile . Absentmindedly looking at the Thunder Ring, she wished the time would stop so that the three of them would stay worry-free .
After a long night, they began their trek back first thing in the morning .
But ten thousand miles out, a huge bird had its eye on each and every movement of theirs . Blue flames wreathed its body and with every flap of its wings, it flew deeper into the Allbeast Mountain Range…