The little girl they rescued from the blood octopus had been asleep ever since she was first taken down underground. With everything that was happening, Bai Yunfei didn't have the time to take a proper look at the girl and how she was doing. Then when Huangfu Rui was said to be missing, Bai Yunfei was left with even less time to think about the little girl. All he could do was entrust her to Zheng Kai as they left to find Huangfu Rui.
Since the little girl seemed fine as she slept, no one expected her to suddenly be in a lot of pain!
Zheng Kai had been holding onto her the entire time. Her dirty clothes were still stained black with the inky liquid from the blood octopus, and her face was slightly grimy with the combination of sweat and dirt on it. Her mouth was twisted in pain as if trying to cry out, and her eyes were squirming in an effort to open them, but had seemingly no strength to do so.
Everyone crowded around her with Bai Yunfei the one closest to her excluding Zheng Kai. He placed a palm onto her forehead. It felt hot to the touch, but there was something else that bothered him. Scanning her body with his soulsense, Bai Yunfei quickly realized just what it was that was wrong and jerked his hand back!
"What is it, Yunfei?"
A strong reaction like that was surprising, and Tang Xinyun just had to ask what was going on.
"Elemental darkness….it's corroding her energy!"
Of everyone there, it was Tang Xinyun who was most surprised and understanding. "Could it be….the Soul Refining Palm?! Was a little girl like her really hit by such a poisonous attack?!"
"No, it doesn't seem like the Soul Refining Palm." Bai Yunfei replied. "But the aura feels familiar. I felt something like this when I was fighting the blood octopus earlier. If I'm not wrong then she must've been affected due to overexposure….that blood octopus was a soulbeast with a dark affinity. The blood it spat out and the sticky liquid it shot from its tentacles were both very hard to deal with. It has to be like a poison for a commoner, and their bodies shouldn't be able to handle it all, that's why she's like this now."
His guess was right. The girl was indeed being poisoned by the energy of the blood octopus. In order to be properly used as bait, the blood octopus had the girl put into a state of 'suspended death'. Whenever she was needed, the octopus would 'wake' her up and allow her to call out for help in the lord-mayor's mansion. The blood octopus would even feed her some of its soulforce to keep her alive for just a little longer. If it didn't, the girl would've died a long time ago. But now without the soulforce to counteract against the blood octopus' energy, the girl's body was 'infected'. If not for Bai Yunfei appearing and killing the blood octopus, the girl would most likely be dead already.
The only way the normally unintelligible blood octopus would know of such a method to 'fish' for prey was simply because of the guidance of its master and Gui Wei.
So to reiterate, the malignant symptoms showing up in the girl's body was the result of her body no longer being fed any soulforce to stop the elemental darkness in it! It would've been possible to prolong the stasis her body was in if the blood octopus was still alive to feed its soulforce into her, but that was no longer the case! She was in pain now, and if nothing was done about it, the girl would die in excruciating pain!
The look of pain on the young girl's face was unbearable for Kou Tingting, the resident expert on healing due to her training in elemental water. "Let me try something."
She walked up to the girl and raised both hands forward. Elemental water coated her hands before she pressed them onto the head and stomach of the young girl.
"The corrosive energy is highly resistant to external forces and is prone to outbursts." Bai Yunfei warned her, "Take it slow and use a little soulforce for a preemptive scan first, else you're going to hurt her even more."
Kou Tingting nodded. Biting down on her lip, she maneuvered her soulforce slowly into the young girl's body to start her treatment.
The young girl's body trembled violently upon the new intrusion. Her whimper of pain caused Kou Tingting to pull her hand back in great concern. "I can't….It's as difficult as Yunfei says. I can't treat this…."
"Then...should I give her the Yun's Soul Ring?" Tang Xinyun asked.
As a victim of the Soul Refining Palm and the corrosive energy of elemental darkness, Tang Xinyun was more than aware of how effective the Yun's Soul Ring was for it. Since this little was in the same boat she had been, Tang Xinyun saw it prudent to offer up such a solution.
But her suggestion was denied. "It won't work. Her soul's already too weak since she's a commoner, and she can't even circulate her own soulforce. The Yun's Soul Ring won't help her here."
"Then…." Crestfallen, Tang Xinyun asked, "what are we to do? Watch as this young girl in front of us suffers until she dies?"
The group stood there unsure of what to do.
Two streaks of light were heading over to where they stood—it was Xiao Qi and Long Lan. Having gone to look for Huangfu Rui in a different direction from the others, it wasn't until Xiao Qi was notified by Bai Yunfei through their soulbond that Xiao Qi in turn looked for Long Lan to convene with the others.
"Oh!" Bai Yunfei's eyes lit up when he sensed the arrival of the two soulbeasts. "Long Lan! Long Lan can give it a try!"
"What did you say?" Long Lan asked as he came down.
"Long Lan, come here," Bai Yunfei gestured for him to come over, "Send some of your soulforce into this girl, use your elemental darkness! And be slow about it."
Long Lan didn't quite understand what was going on, but the urgent looks on everyone faces told him that now wasn't the time to ask questions. Two steps later, he was right by the girl's side with the palm of his right hand pressed against the girl's forehead. A moment later, a wisp of black smoke started to rise from his hand!
It was elemental darkness!
Long Lan was given an affinity for elemental darkness after he became a class seven soulbeast, meaning he was now a blue-eyes white wyrm with an affinity for both elemental darkness and elemental water—a world's first perhaps in terms of every other blue-eyes white wyrm. This was all because of the Black Dragon King's blood in which Long Lan lapped up all the way back in the Soulbeast Forest. By ingesting his blood, Long Lan was able to digest and absorb the power inside the blood to make it into his own.
His control over elemental darkness could hardly be considered strong or of any particular notice compared to his elemental water. But together, the elemental darkness could boost his elemental water control to a rather effective degree much like how Bai Yunfei could use his companion lightningseed to boost his control over elemental fire.
What Bai Yunfei was thinking was a little simple. If the little girl was afflicted with elemental darkness, then Long Lan could in turn try to control that energy and remove it.
And to his great surprise and pleasure, it was working!!
The improvements to the young girl's situation was extremely noticeable the very moment Long Lan's elemental darkness entered her. Like a snake, the elemental darkness that was in her body started to slow down its weaving to calm down and go into hibernation.
This was however a 'temporary' measure. Long Lan couldn't pull his hand back in fear of the elemental darkness flaring up again and sending the girl back into a world of pain.
The girl was safe from danger for now, but that didn't mean they were well on the way to curing and saving her life.
Bai Yunfei pressed a hand to his aching temple. "Ai, what should we do now…."
It had been a great pain for Bai Yunfei to save the young girl from the blood octopus. To see her in pain and without being able to do a thing was heartbreaking, and Bai Yunfei found it hard to just watch to see her life slowly drain away from her.
A tiny voice spoke to Bai Yunfei.
It was Xiao Qi, whose head was cocked towards the left side of the forest. His voice spoke out to Bai Yunfei in his head.
"There's someone there!!"