Four corpses adorned the path ahead of Bai Yunfei's group as they walked forward to inspect them.
The look of tensions didn't fade away from Bai Yunfei's face even after a cursory examination of the corpses. If anything, he looked even more pensive by the results.
"There wasn't even any resistance…Four Late-stage Soul Exalts were killed without even being able to protect themselves besides the last one…"
Jing Mingfeng muttered in confusion and shock.
Yue Feng looked skeptical as well, "But the more important thing is how they died. I can't even make any sense of it…"
The only strange thing about these corpses was the tiny hole that was somewhere on their bodies. Of the four corpses, one of them had a hole through their forehead, and another had it through their throats. Their death was at the very least not very hard to imagine, but the other two had only one hole going through their left shoulder and right part of the chest!
Not even commoners would die from a wound like that. It wasn't even a fatal blow. But somehow, two soul cultivators had seemingly died without even being able to do a thing. Bai Yunfei and the others would've thought otherwise if not for the fact that they witnessed the last person being killed by that black beam of light through his chest. There hadn't been any other wounds besides that.
Zheng Kai crouched down next to the dead metal-type soul cultivator and touched at the metal shield. He stared briefly at the item before inspecting the chest area of the soul cultivator. "Not only did that black beam of light pierce his mid-earth tier shield, but it also went through his high-earth tier armor as well. Not even his elemental energy was able to stop the thing. Weird…what is that thing? How can it be so strong?"
He sent an inquisitive glance over to Bai Yunfei.
Bai Yunfei shrugged. "No point asking me. I might be a crafter, but I'm not able to see everything about a soul armament at a single glance. With that said though, the soul armament in that black beam of light is most likely a high-heaven tier with a special ability in it."
Everyone gasped. "For the love of everything, Ol'Bai, can you not just say things like that as if you're talking about the weather? High-heaven tier?! The soul armaments that even the strongest disciples and scions of the Ten Great Schools and Five Families can hardly use? The treasured heirlooms any whos-who?" Jing Mingfeng asked.
"Haha, it's just a guess, it might possibly be a mid-heaven tier."
"No matter what grade it is, there's one thing for certain…Someone out here in the mist is easily capable of killing Late-stage Soul Exalts with a power none of us understands. He's killed these people and didn't even bothered to take their things, but why? Did he hate these people? It doesn't seem like it…" Yue Feng conjectured.
"Furthermore, didn't it seem like he realized we were right before he was transported away? I've been thinking about it this entire time…" Yu Li brought up.
"Exactly!!" Exclaimed Yue Feng, "We were at the very edge of his range right before he disappeared. Think about it, we were barely able to sense him at first, and yet he was able to sense us?! Doesn't that mean…his soulsense is as strong as the six of us combined?!"
"Dear heavens, stop it with the scare tactics. The strongest people here are Peak Late-stage Soul Exalts and nothing else," Jing Mingfeng spoke in exasperation, "even if someone were to have obscenely powerful soulsense because of their training, it being that strong is a little too much, isn't it?"
"Then why do you think he turned around and looked like he was saying something before he was transported away?"
"I…" Jing Mingfeng scratched his head as he tried to think of an answer, "Alright, fine. Maybe it's true what you're saying, but…doesn't it seem intimidating? That there's someone like that in here with us in this mist? Who is he? Why is he killing these people? If it's for the Extreme King Pills, aren't we also considered prey for him? What if he attacks us? Would we even be able to defend ourselves from that black light?"
A chilling air descended upon the hearts of the group as everyone thought back to how the black beam of light tore straight through the metal-type soul cultivator. If they were ambushed, would their defenses hold?
No one had a confident look as they debated the answer.
"We don't know if we'll ever meet this person again, let's try not to scare ourselves." Bai Yunfei spoke to change the topic. "He's already been transported away, who knows where he is? We just need to keep going forward."
"Yunfei's right!" Zheng Kai nodded his head, "If we just keep going forward, we'll make it to the top of the mountain. If we can get the Extreme King Pills and leave, it doesn't matter to us who is killing who."
And so the group was decided. They took the space rings of the four corpses before Bai Yunfei burnt them into ashes. Now that their mental tribulation was over, they continued onwards.
What they saw must've weighed heavily on their minds, however. An hour after the group left the sight, they reached one of the more dense parts of the mist and accidentally crossed over into a very faint spatial barrier. By the time Zheng Kai realized their error, it was too late.
The group was transported away to another place, and the collective mood of the group was at a low. They didn't even know where they were, and if they were heading up the mountain or down anymore. Without any clues to tell where they were, the group conferred with each other for a bit before deciding to try and head down the mountain to rest.
Still, this mountain wasn't built so that they could leave the mountain if they wanted. Unlike the last two times, the group was unable to be transported to the bottom of the mountain even after just wandering around the place. As such, they were forced to wander the mountain for even longer.
It wasn't until another hour that the group was finally transported to the base of the mountain and made their way out from the mist.
Though they made their way out from the mist, the looks on everyone's faces looked quite unhappy for some reason.
At some point in their 'meandering' around the mountain an hour prior, the group came across two things, in particular, that was especially worrisome.
First off was the fact that they had come across three other groups of soul cultivators ho fought them. A battle was to be expected with how restless people were getting in the mist, but the chaotic flux of soulforce and elemental energy from these battles were somehow affecting the maze itself. Bai Yunfei and the others weren't very sure if it'd change the layout of the maze by changing locations of the barriers or anything, but it was still a very worrisome thing they didn't want to have happened.
The other thing was that the group would come across several 'special' corpses every so often. As different as the corpses were, their deaths were always the same in one way…they had holes in them inflicted to them by that mysterious black beam of light and shadowy figure! With so many deaths in the mist, Bai Yunfei's group grew all the more confident that this shadowy figure was here in the mist to try and kill everyone it came across!
It was with luck that the group was able to make it back to the stone forest of last time. Back in their last resting spot, the group sat down and began to recollect their soulforce. They weren't even in the mood to drink any tea or eat any snacks, they were all too busy recuperating.
"There's even fewer people now…"
It was Yu Li who spoke up first to break the silence.
There weren't even thirty people left here at the base of the mountain. Though people were still going up and down the mountain, the area looked especially sparse with the people coming down from the mist looking haggard and heavily injured.
There were plenty of people standing away from the base of the mountain trying to rest. At a glance, all of these people looked especially grim. And from the eyes of the others, some of these soul cultivators looked deeply terrified about something…
It was as if something called 'horror' was slowly being spread about the area…