The Sword Spirit didn't say anything and seemed to be lost in observation for a long time. It then said, "It's too risky!"
"Risky? That's fine!" Chu Yang thought in his heart. [The Sword Spirit didn't say that it cannot support me. He just said that it's too risky. This means that there's a hope of success in taking this risk!]
Chu Yang was willing to press his luck at this juncture. He was prepared to take any kind of a risk as long as there was even 1% hope of success. Not to mention that the Sword Spirit had personally said that it was too risky but possible; [then why not give it a try?]
Chu Yang took a deep breath and slowly stretched-out his right hand. A sword appeared in his hand with a 'clanging' sound.
He'd be able to escape from his current predicament if he managed to make a getaway from here. If he failed… then this would be his last fight in this life.
It was a fight to win or die, and he had no choice but to fight. So, he might as well go all-out and fight whole-heartedly without caring about life and death.
Chu Yang's wasn't thinking about Mo Qing Wu in his heart. He wasn't thinking about Meng Chao Ran, Tan Tan or his sword brothers. Even more so… he wasn't thinking about his own fuzzy life-experiences...
There was only one thought in his mind — kill and escape!
Kill and escape!
"One ray of cold light pierces ten thousand fathoms... What harm is there in slaughtering the entire world?" Chu Yang slowly recited in a low voice. His eyes gazed at the shining sword as he continued to mutter and repeat the same chant over and over, "What harm is there in slaughtering the entire world?"
Chanting the names of the Nine Tribulations Sword's techniques aloud had suddenly boosted the heroic spirit in his heart.
The most crucial part in this mnemonic chant of the Nine Tribulations Sword was that 'question mark' at the end of the sentence. This question mark gave a choice. This choice is for the person who practices the Nine Heavens Sword Play; it lets him choose between two different paths.
One is for hesitance; the other is for decisiveness.
[What harm is there?]
[What's wrong in doing this?]
"Let me slaughter everyone today..." Chu Yang felt a burst of energy stirring up his chest. A raging energy violently rushed forth from the bottom of his heart and went to the tip of his raised eyebrows. His cold vision swept across the trees and landed on the soldiers who were pitching the camps. Then, he said in a cold and callous tone: "...well what harm is there? What's wrong in doing this?"
The sword blade began to shine. It seemed to be responding to the murderous aura of its master. The cold and chilling sword-light sprang-up with a 'clanging' sound, and began to dance on the sword's body. The Sword Point's extremely sharp tip climbed-up the sword blade and attached itself at the top.
The tip of the sword suddenly issued a harsh flash of dazzling light. This light was even brighter than the sunlight.
Sword Edge silently rushed-out of the Dantian, and moved upstream along the meridians to arrive into his arm. It then rushed-up his palm and entered the long sword. Chu Yang felt a burst of heat flowing and surging within his body. The long sword in his hand issued bursts of bright white light along with abrupt scarlet flashes.
Then, the Sword Spine suddenly rushed-up with a loud explosion.
Suddenly, the murderous aura filled the entire sky and the steam disseminated everywhere. Chu Yang's background had transformed into hell in a split second; it was brimming of a cold and gloomy aura — just like the hellish underworld. The birds on the trees and the insects underground sensed this terrifying murderous intention. They panicked upon sensing the danger, and began to flee in disarray.
The Nine Tribulations Sword's three fragments charged forward to break-through the enemy lines. The ominous spine was crazily aching to massacre the enemy. This was the first time it was cooperating with the other fragments after a separation of 10,000 years. Therefore, its murderous spirit was the largest among the three fragments that had joined together to form this sword.
The Nine Tribulations Sword had appeared eight times in this world over the past 80,000 years. The order of appearance of the fragments was different each time. However, the Sword Point, the Sword Edge and the Sword Spine had never been the first three fragments to appear in a sequence.
However, these three killer fragments had taken birth in the beginning this time. And this had only happened during Chu Yang's turn. Considering their appearance in such desperate times… when the entire world was in chaos… seemed to foretell something...
Was this was the Will of Heaven?
Chu Yang suddenly felt a storm of murderous aura raging within his heart as he held the long sword in his hand. It was a very hostile aura; the only one of its kind that existed between heaven and earth.
It was hard to tell how many souls had been released from their suffering by the Sword Point, the Sword Edge and the Sword Spine in the last 80,000 years. The Nine Tribulations Sword had always been the 'divine purging artifact' of Nine Heavens. It was capable of wreaking havoc in the Upper Three Heavens. Therefore, it could be imagined that those who had been killed by it weren't ordinary people.
To put it bluntly… a King Level Expert was a high level expert in Chu Yang's eyes at the moment. However, a King Level Expert… perhaps wouldn't make it to the bottommost level of 'experts' in comparison to the souls of the people that had been slayed by the Nine Tribulation Sword in the past.
It was needless to say that countless experts of the Emperor Level, the Monarch Level and even the Saint Level had been slaughtered by the Nine Tribulations Sword.
As for the Supreme Level Experts... no one would dare to say that there was none in that list.
Chu Yang had come in contact with these three killer artifacts, and had gathered them at one place. The outbreak of such a hostile aura had nearly destroyed Chu Yang's mind.
Luckily there were two things which saved his life. One was his own incredible mental strength which had resulted from his two lifetimes of experiences; and the other was the suppression force of Sword Spirit. That's how the hostile aura of the Nine Tribulations Sword was successfully brought under control.
However, Chu Yang's present appearance was no different than that of the fiendish-devils mentioned in the legends. Anyone who'd see him in this avatar wouldn't pay attention to his face; they'd look at the solidified hostile aura that had taken shape on his body.
Chu Yang had leaked it out; though, only a little. He had gained a new power now that he had obtained the third fragment of Nine Tribulations Sword — the power to assimilate people's lives.
Chu Yang closed his eyes. Then, he took two deep breaths. He then opened his eyes; as if with a flash of understanding. His body silently floated-out. He went along the hidden corners as he took cover behind the big trees. He sometimes stuck close to the ground and moved through the bushes.
He left ripples in the green grass as he brushed forward; just like a boat that leaves-behind ripples on the water-surface as it passes-by. These ripples were divided on his either sides, and gave rise to a chain reaction of more ripples in the grass...
The commanding officer of this army unit was a famous general of the Great Zhao — Wang Teng Long. He had received an order from Diwu Qing Rou to assemble an army of 200,000 soldiers in the shortest possible time and head north to the Iron Cloud battlefield. He had hence led his own private army and had left the Continent Center. However, he had never anticipated that he'd be intercepted by an invisible falcon after covering only halfway of the journey. He had received the command to turn around and assist in capturing and killing King of Hell Chu.
Wang Teng Long had no time to summon troops from elsewhere under the sudden pressure of such an exceptionally urgent matter. Hence, he had only brought his private army due to lack of a better option; it only consisted of 10,000 elite soldiers.
However, he had full confidence in his men. [My 10,000 soldiers are elites. They can be called veterans in the arts of war. This elite army unit of 10,000 can confront 100,000 soldiers. They can push 100,000 soldiers to a disadvantageous situation without the slightest effort! In fact, they might even win the battle and annihilate the enemy!]
[They should be enough to surround and capture King of Hell Chu!]
Wang Teng Long wasn't contemptuous about the legends of King of Hell Chu. He merely thought that 10,000 soldiers and horses 'should be enough' to surround and capture King of Hell Chu. In fact, it would be like 'killing the chicken with an ox-axe'; a total overkill.
Wang Teng Long was a famous general of the Great Zhao. He was always accompanied by more than 10,000 soldiers and horses. He was ranked 13th in the ranking list of top generals in the continent. He was valiant, had a tough character and a raging inferno-like disposition. He wasn't a general one would like a deal with.
A deputy general was allowed to have a few hundred soldiers. A low-ranking general's private army couldn't have more than 1000 soldiers. The intermediate and senior ranking generals couldn't have more than 3000 soldiers. Only the so-called 'famous generals' were qualified to have 10,000 soldiers.
This showed how dreadful a persona Wang Teng Long really was.
Moreover, these 10,000 soldiers were part of Wang Teng Long's private army, and each of them was elite among elites.
Wang Teng Long had seen the topography of this canyon, and had issued the command: [make the fan-shaped formation and march forward. Reach the narrowest region of the canyon and pitch the camps there! This place looks like a giant throat!]
[Even a fly won't be able to pass by as long as we can strangle the throat!]
Wang Teng Long was 100% sure — [as long as my soldiers can set up the barracks in the narrowest part of this canyon… we should be able to persist for an entire month and hold our own even if the enemy had a million soldiers; so long as we have sufficient military provisions!]
They had arrived at the narrowest place. His vice general was overseeing the pitching of barracks, while Wang Teng Long rode his horse to the top of a small soil-slope and gazed into the distance. It seemed as if he was trying to track the activity in the mountain-forest.
[This boundless mountain-forest is like one giant bottle gourd, and this canyon is like its neck. If someone is to come out of this mountain-forest… they cannot escape our surveillance!]
Wang Teng Long had taken a roundabout route to arrive here to outflank the enemy. He had was very confident; [even a mouse can't get past me!]
[King of Hell Chu can't take this route to return to the Iron Cloud. The other two options for him are to remain hidden in Great Zhao… or go to Limitless Nation. However, it's highly unlikely that he has opted for those options. He wouldn't have entered this mountain-forest otherwise!]
[As long as he is still here… as long as he dares to come out… He will surely and certainly fall into my lap!]
"Reporting to Great General; your military order has been completed," The deputy general turned around and came running to his side. He stood at attention with his back perfectly straight like a rod and reported to him.
Wang Teng Long's had an established rule; a rule even his own deputy general wasn't allowed to violate despite the fact that he was very close to his immediate-subordinate. Anyone who'd disregard it would be punished according to the military law.
He believed that an army must uphold its code of conduct. Even if there were fathers, brothers and sons in the army… they must uphold the appearance of army officers. You are my father, but I hold a higher rank than yours in the army. Hence, you stand at attention and salute whenever you see me. Moreover, you can only call me by my designation. You're not allowed to call me by any other name. I'll hit you right there-and-then if you call me son in front of the others.
If Wang Teng Long's own son were the Commanding General and he himself were the deputy general — he'd bow down and kowtow when greeting his son.
This was the military law.
Once upon a time… his own younger brother had come to see him in his tent, and had involuntarily called him 'Big Brother'. Wang Teng Long had ordered his subordinates to punish his young brother by severely hitting him forty times with an army stick.
He would stand next to the bed of his unconscious young brother at night and shed tears of pain and regret… but when he was a commander-in-chief on duty… he was strictly impartial towards the army's code of conduct. Even Diwu Qing Rou addressed him by his military designation while he was on duty.
This was Wang Teng Long.
Wang Teng Long put on a serious face, and replied as he looked indifferently at his troops busy at work, "Ok! Got it!" He paused for a second, then said, "Fuhu, what do you think about this?"
Deputy Sun Fuhu had been his partner for more than ten years. There was a tacit understanding between these two, and that too to such an extent that they didn't need to speak in detail to get their point across. He knew what Wang Teng Long was talking about after just a mouthful of words...
Sun Fuhu carefully looked at the mountain-forest and then at the army. He then solemnly said, "Great General, this subordinate thinks that King of Hell Chu won't be able to escape as long as you are stationed here!"
"Not necessarily!" Wang Teng Long smiled and slowly shook his head. He insipidly said while he gazed at the mountain-forest: "You don't understand King of Hell Chu, do you? He won't be that infamous King of Hell Chu if he got caught so easily."
"En? Can it be that Great General is worried?" Sun Fuhu was somewhat surprised to see Wang Teng Long acting in this manner. An army of 10,000 soldiers lying in wait at the throat of this canyon was enough to capture King of Hell Chu in his opinion. In fact, it was a bit too excessive to gather such a large force to apprehend just one guy. However, he had never imagined that his Great General would turn-out to have this kind of attitude in this regard.