Defiant Martial God
Chapter 59: Who Killed the Gatekeeper?
Qin Yu understood clearly why Dugu Feiyan and Li Yijian had joined forces to defeat Qing Yun and why Qing Yun had helped him escape earlier. Since this situation was because of him, he couldn’t just stand by indifferently. Furthermore, Dugu Feiyan had tried to steal his tokens; he still hadn’t even paid back that debt yet. But, naturally, treating Qing Yun’s wound was most important right now; repaying Dugu Feiyan could wait.
Qin Yu carried Qing Yun’s soft and delicate body to an isolated corner and carefully set her down. When he was about to start treating her wounds, a loud noise suddenly sounded from the upper floor. A black figure plummeted from above, landing with a thud. “Another person’s been struck down?” Qin Yu looked at the fifth floor’s entrance. His pupils abruptly contracted; the figure’s clothing indicated the one who’d fallen was actually a hunter.
The hunter noticed Qin Yu and Qing Yun, and a trace of surprise appeared in his eyes. The hunter hadn’t expected anybody to still be alive on the fourth floor. Everyone else had proceeded upward to beat each other bloody for the remaining treasures long ago; but, these two were actually hiding here. Yet, he could understand why with their current situation: As a single peak level Origin Realm cultivator and a seriously injured mid level Immersion Realm cultivator, they could only hide here to avoid being killed by others above.
But, was hiding here really safe? The hunter sneered in his heart, and a demonic light appeared in his eyes as he stared at Qing Yun. The girl’s looks weren’t bad, and she could definitely be used to warm a bed. However, he was currently occupied and would have to come back later. The hunter no longer paid any attention to the pair. His figure flashing, he released another shout and jumped down to the floor below.
“How troublesome.” Qin Yu watched the hunter descend, and a few theories arose in his heart. He recalled the hunter he’d killed back at the first floor and how he’d worried about the hunter’s companions finding something amiss. It seemed the group really had sent somebody down to investigate. Considering this possibility, Qin Yu secretly made preparations. If the situation wasn’t good, then he’d just have to kill the investigator directly. If Qin Yu didn’t kill him now, a endless wave of hunters would pursue him.
Qin Yu’s guess was true: Very quickly, the hunter returned to the fourth floor and fixed his eyes on Qin Yu coldly. “The gatekeeper at the first floor, have you seen him?” The investigator’s voice was tinged with oppressive killing intent.
Qin Yu faced the hunter calmly, completely ignoring the intimidating tone in his voice, and replied indifferently, “I haven’t.” The hunter’s eyes flashed, his killing intent surging. Despite the other’s murderous aura, Qin Yu was still as calm as ever. His hand was prepared to unsheathe his sword at a moment’s notice. He had to kill the hunter with a single strike; otherwise, he’d alarm the others and the aftermath would be grave. But, strangely, the hunter ultimately didn’t act; instead, he just glared fiercely at Qin Yu before flying up to the fifth floor and disappearing. The hunter urgently had to report back to the Captain and didn’t have time to waste there.
“He left?” Qin Yu was somewhat disappointed. He’d been ready; but, the other’s actions meant all Qin Yu’s efforts were for nothing, leaving him feeling a bit disappointed.
However, Qing Yun’s reaction was completely different. She released a sigh of relief as she watched the hunter leave. “Qin Yu, you should go. Don’t worry about me. Bringing me along will only hinder you.”
“Don’t worry. I’m not going to abandon a beautiful woman just like that,” Qin Yu refused jokingly.
Turning slightly pink, Qing Yun ducked her head and said softly, “Always such a smooth talker.”
Qin Yu was startled; what ‘always a smooth talker’? He didn’t remember saying any such words to her before. “Uhh... that... uh... Just, let me treat you, alright?” Qin Yu changed the topic and began to treat Qing Yun’s wounds. Currently, his《Secrets of Eternal Life》had already reached the second stage, and he could move his true qi to another person to help them recover. Furthermore, his space ring also held some medicinal pills. By treating the problem with two methods, Qing Yun began recovering at a swift pace.
In the hidden chamber within the tower, the king of hunters, Can Bao, was in a great mood, pretending to be cultured and practicing calligraphy at a table. Of course, rather than elegant penmanship, he was practicing a specific sword technique. He grasped the brush in his hand, writing on the white parchment. Each time the brush fell, each stroke was filled with sharp sword qi and glowed with piercing light. Several people stood behind the king, and their faces filled with awe at Can Bao’s strength evident in the strong sword intent the characters emitted. For fear of breaking the atmosphere, no one dared to make a sound; all just quietly watched.
At this moment, somebody suddenly entered the room. It was the hunter who’d been sent down to scout out the situation with the first-floor gatekeeper. The hunter who’d just arrived was about to report the situation when he was immediately hushed by the others. Thus, there was nothing he could do other than wait obediently.
Still disturbed by the intrusion, Can Bao stopped writing and asked in a cold, domineering voice, “Did you discover what happened below?”
The man hastily walked forward and kneeled. “The cultivators who entered the tower have killed each other to the point that there’s only a few people left. Currently, there are two on the fourth floor, five on the eighth floor, and the highest is the ninth floor with ten people. They are all waiting for the tenth floor to open.” The first floor and tenth floor were both locked and required a hunter to personally open them.
“What about Mo Feng? They’ve almost all killed each other; so, where is he?” Can Bao’s face revealed a hint of unhappiness.
Seeing Can Bao’s frown, the scout’s body trembled, and his expression dimmed. “Mo Feng, he… died.”
“What?” Not just Can Bao, but everybody stared at the investigator with faces full of disbelief.
“Nonsense, how could Mo Feng have possibly died in this tower? Who would dare to kill him?!” Somebody immediately shouted in retort. Inside this pagoda, the hunters were the rulers and controlled the fates of everyone who entered. Nobody would dare to kill the masters of the tower! Not to mention, Mo Feng was just about to break through the middle stage of Immersion Realm. Even if somebody wanted to kill him, he still should’ve had enough time to send out a distress signal and absolutely wouldn’t have died so silently.
Because of their arrogance, the hunters believed it was simply impossible for somebody to have acted against them, the masters in this pagoda. Therefore, when Mo Feng didn’t immediately return, none of them had any worries or suspicions. It was only recently, when there was still no sign of him, that the group finally decided to send somebody to check. The result was that Mo Feng had actually died. Even though the scout who had been sent out reported such, the hunters still could not believe it.
“By the time I reached the first floor, Mo Feng’s aura had already disappeared. And, near his last position, there were only bloodstains and a few words written in blood: ‘Origin killed me’ If everyone doesn’t believe it, then you can go down and look for yourselves. The bloodstains and his last words are still there.” When people died within the Slaughter Array, their corpses would be teleported to a designated area outside of the Illusory Battlefield. However, the bloodstains and such things would remain. Upon hearing the investigator’s words, everyone’s faces turned stiff. The facts were right before their eyes, and they had no choice but to believe that there truly was somebody who could kill one of them. Qin Yu hadn’t anticipated the dead hunter would leave behind a few dying words. After Qin Yu had killed him, he was anxious to rush to the second floor, and so he hadn’t noticed.
“‘Origin killed me’; what does that mean?” Somebody asked the scout.
That person muttered to himself for a bit before guessing, “Maybe the killer’s surname is ‘Chu’ (Origin), or the killer’s name has that character?” In fact, the whole sentence was supposed to be, “An Origin Realm Cultivator killed me.” Mo Feng hadn’t known Qin Yu’s name, and so the gatekeeper could only write as such. Unfortunately, he only had the chance to write a few words before he finally kicked the bucket. And, among the hunters, nobody was stupid enough to think an Origin Realm cultivator would actually be strong enough to defeat a mid-peak stage Immersion Realm cultivator in a wink of an eye, not even giving Mo Feng time to call for help. Thus, the hunters could only guess “Chu”[footnote] The Pinyin for the character ‘Origin’ or ‘Beginning’/’Basic’ 初 [/footnote] was a name.
“Find whoever has the surname ‘Chu’ or that character in their name.” Can Bao’s scarred face was dreadfully cold, his voice icy enough to make a person shudder. Frankly, he didn’t really grieve the loss of a man; but, having such a death on his watch was simply a disgrace to his pride. A shepherd dying to his own lambs for slaughter was simply a joke and a slap in the face to the king of these shepherds.
“Da Ge, it’s possible that the person we seek has already died in battle with somebody else,” somebody voiced. “We’ve discovered Mo Feng’s death too late.”
“Not necessarily.” Another person reasoned, “He has to be an expert if he killed Mo Feng near instantaneously. Such a powerful expert wouldn’t die so easily. He may be one of the ten people on the ninth floor.” This analysis was very reasonable, and everyone immediately acknowledged it.
“Shi Yan, go. Move up the next stage of the plan and try your hardest to find the killer,” Can Bao ordered coldly, bloodlust flashing sharply in his eyes.
“Yes.” The man called “Shi Yan” turned around and left the hidden chamber.
The ten strongest of the competitors all converged on the ninth floor of the pagoda. All were frightening cultivators who were at the late stage of Immersion Realm at the very least. The most powerful had already reached the apex of Immersion Realm. Reaching the peak of Immersion Realm may be no big deal; however, none of them were very old, and only a few were older than 20. To reach such a stage at such a young age meant that they were all monsters among monsters.
On the ninth floor, nobody who was below late stage Immersion Realm in cultivation was qualified to stand there. Even if one had enough tokens, whoever came would either be killed or kicked back down. As such, those unwillingly consigned to the eighth floor could only look on wistfully. Many wanted to enter; but, if they tried again, they’d definitely be beaten back down once more and, this time, left as corpses.
Five living people were still on the eighth floor. The rest were all bodies slowly fading into the ground, disappearing one by one. Among the five, three hailed from Luosang City: Mo Badao, Dugu Feiyan, and Li Yijian. The trio were part of Luosang City’s selected players, and the other two were from somewhere else. Apart from Mo Badao at the early stage of Immersion Realm, everyone else was at the middle stage.
The reason why Mo Badao had survived until now and had even reached the eighth floor was his frightening fighting strength. He was so strong that he was able to overcome the difference in cultivation levels in a fight. Countless middle stage Immersion Realm cultivators had fallen beneath his blade. However, no matter how much of a monster he was, he could only stop here.
The ones on the next floor were true monsters, reaching the apex of Immersion Realm before even turning 20 years old was something completely unheard of. In Luosang City, perspectives were too narrow: Luosang City’s geniuses, compared to all those within the country of Qiongxi, were nothing. Naturally, this was only as it should be.
But, Mo Badao didn’t feel too discouraged; after all, the opponents were the greatest geniuses in the entirety of Qiongxi. For him, a youth that hailed from tiny Luosang City, reaching this far at the initial stage of Immersion Realm was already an amazing feat. “You two, I’m stopping here. I’ll be leaving first!” Mo Badao’s character was decisive; and, just as he said, he left, his figure disappearing in a flash as he leaped down to the seventh floor.
“Shall we go too?” Li Yijian asked, looking at Dugu Feiyan.
“En, let’s go.” Dugu Feiyan leaped down to the seventh floor, and Li Yijian following closely behind. When both of them reached the fourth floor, they stopped, eyes landing on Qin Yu and Qing Yun recuperating in the corner. On the wicked pair’s faces, brilliant smiles appeared, grins that were both gleeful and very dangerous, like wolves surrounding two beautiful, fat lambs.
Previous Chapter Next Chapter