Chapter 293: Encountering the Undead Dragon
“These are the grounds of exile for captured arcane masters and Evil Dragon Followers who have failed their missions.” Lotton continued explaining without a hitch as he led the group into the labyrinth, “The Bishops also throw followers who they wish to train and temper in here. Due to the scarcity of resources, one must kill to survive here. That’s why there are so many bones scattered around.”
“However, they released everyone still alive a year ago. Thus, we should be fine passing through here.”
“There might not be any arcane masters, but surely there are still powerful beasts and monsters?” Stingham questioned as he wiped a cold sweat off his forehead. He was extremely cautious as he followed the others through the labyrinth. The corpses and skeletons which popped into his vision every few steps had scared him silly.
Furthermore, the black pillars and massive walls of black rock which partitioned the area all looked exactly the same, making it impossible for him to tell which direction was which.
“There shouldn’t be any. Any which did exist have long since entered the bellies of those arcane masters sent here,” Lotton responded.
“They were all eaten? Emptied out a year ago…” Thoughts raced through Rinloran’s mind as he sensed Lotton’s abnormal familiarity with this area.
Rinloran felt his breath catch in his throat as he abruptly turned and looked at Lotton and asked, “Lotton, could it be that you were training in here up until a year ago?”
After several seconds of silence, Lotton replied, “Indeed.”
“How long were you trapped here,” Rinloran’s face paled as he continued, “in this place filled with exiled and captured arcane masters, in this closed labyrinth where one had to kill others to survive?”
Lotton immediately responded, “Four years.”
“Four years?” Stingham cried in shock as his eyes widened, “Lotton, surely you are joking?!”
“You idiot!” Rinloran’s eyes seemed to release a frosty glint as he glared at Stingham and swore.
“I have been trapped here ever since I awakened,” Lotton said.
“This area was completely sealed, and new people were constantly thrown into its midst to participate in the slaughter. If all of the beasts and monsters here were eaten a long time ago…” Stingham muttered. Then, his face abruptly turned white as he made an intelligent observation for once. “Then Lotton, what did you all eat? Surely the higher up Evil Dragon Followers didn’t toss food into the labyrinth for you all?”
Lotton remained silent.
But in this case, his silence was as good as a reply.
“Lotton, you…” Stingham audibly gulped as he suddenly felt nauseous.
“Living amid slaughter as a youth who had only just awakened. Having to kill others… to not be killed. Were you forced to kill those you had once known, and perhaps even your friends?”
“No wonder you, Lotton, seemed like the true Death God atop the stage of the national tournament. No wonder you looked at everyone like they were already corpses.”
“Just how did you manage to survive in such a place? What pains did you go through?”
As Rinloran silently thought to himself, he couldn’t help but shiver.
“These Evil Dragon Followers are too evil! To think they used methods like this to force arcane masters to kill each other. Such a cruel means of training! We must defeat them and rid Doraster of their evil!” Ayrin shouted as fighting intent and a fiery anger filled his eyes. “But Lotton, why did they release everyone a year ago? What happened?”
“It’s because at that point, I was the only arcane master remaining. Any new arcane masters who were thrown in would be quickly killed by me. They weren’t able to achieve the situation they wished for any longer,” Lotton slowly explained.
“Having lived in an environment like this for so long, it is no wonder that the Office of Special Affairs couldn’t find you after you fled into the sewers of Eichemalar,” Ayrin exclaimed as he finally understood.
“You must have been forced to kill a lot of people you didn’t wish to? That’s why you have such great resentment. Lotton, you are a true brave warrior! I shall do my best to help you obtain the Lunar Spring Essence so that we can continue to fight against the Evil Dragon Followers together! We will thoroughly defeat them!” Ayrin pumped his fist in the air as he exuberantly shouted.
“Taking revenge?” Lotton lowered his head, but a spark of hatred could be seen amidst his formerly emotionless eyes.
“Why is there such a loud sound of rushing water?”
After following Lotton’s lead through the labyrinth for a little over an hour, Ayrin suddenly heard crashing water, as if there was a huge waterfall nearby. However, the air around him was still as dry as before.
“We have almost arrived at the Land of the Undead,” Lotton responded. “That is the sound released by the Lunar Spring Essence.”
“We are almost there? The sound released by the Lunar Spring Essence is this loud?”
Ayrin couldn’t help but start climbing up the black stone pillar before him.
If it wasn’t far away, then he would be able to see their destination from the top of the pillar.
But as he climbed further and further up the pillar, he felt his body becoming heavier and heavier.
“A natural reversed gravity field?” Ayrin thought to himself.
Indeed, these stone pillars and walls formed a special gravitational field, prevented Ayrin from reaching the top.
It was no surprise, as this would have prevented those trapped within the labyrinth from being able to scout others, making survival even more difficult.
The Evil Dragon Followers had indeed chosen a good area for their slaughter field.
“We will arrive after another couple dozen meters,” Lotton spoke before Ayrin could try to climb the pillar once more. He didn’t wish for Ayrin to waste any more energy. They were, after all, in the midst of a war field.
After hearing Lotton’s words, the group quickly traversed the last tens of meters.
Upon exiting the labyrinth, a valley containing an abnormally sunken forest appeared before them.
Ayrin couldn’t help but exclaim, “So this is what the Land of the Undead looks like! No wonder it is called the Land of the Undead!”
The valley was no larger than the Nether Ice Sea. At most, it was several dozen kilometers in diameter. At first glance, it looked like a crater formed from a giant meteorite.
The ground of the valley was covered with a thick layer of white bone dust.
As for what looked like towering white trees sticking up from the earth, they were actually giant bones!
The aura of death emanated from the earth and these white bones, causing arcane energy to condense into streaks of blue light in midair. It looked as if there were truly dead souls roaming throughout the valley.
They entered the valley.
The presence of these “spirits” shrouded the valley like a constant mist, making them feel as if they were no longer within the world of the living.
“Is that the Lunar Spring Essence?” Ayrin exclaimed as an enormous dragon skull appeared amidst the mist before him upon arriving at a clearing in the center of the Land of the Undead. A cold blue flame flickered within, shining through the mist like a strange lamp.
Strangely enough, the air surrounding the icy blue flame contained an extremely dense water arcane energy as countless streams of water were constantly generated around the flame. The water flowed down along the rest of the dragon’s massive curving skeleton, forming a several meter high waterfall.
“Lunar Spring Essence!”
Rinloran subconsciously trembled.
The ancient Lunar Spring was completely destroyed after the ancient elven kingdom fell at the hands of the Evil Dragon’s great army. Thus, Rinloran had never expected that there would still be Lunar Spring Essence in existence, and that it would be in the hands of the Evil Dragon Followers.
“Wait!” Lotton shouted at Stingham, who was rushing towards the dragon skeleton, indicating that he should immediately stop and return to his original position beside them.
“What is it?” Stingham perplexedly questioned.
But right at this moment, a giant twisting shadow suddenly flew out from within the forest on the other side of the clearing before them.
“What is this? Such a terrifying aura!” Ayrin couldn’t help but quietly cry out in shock.
As the shadow turned and twisted in midair, it released terrifying arcane energy fluctuations which caused sharp vibrations to ring through the air.
Although the shadow was still quite far away from them, the pressure pressing on them was already greater than the pressure they felt while facing the Allen Brothers.
Rinloran stopped breathing as the shadow approached them and he saw it more clearly.
At first glance, the shadow seemed to be composed of countless clouds of black smoke. But upon closer inspection, many of these clouds of black smoke were arranged like the scattered bones of a skeleton. Meanwhile, two gigantic wings of black smoke unfurled from the shadow’s back as four limbs extended out. It looked just like a dragon!
And it wasn’t simply smoke and shadows as an obvious and pure draconic aura emanated from it.
“The Undead Bishop Tangwen’s guardian, his Undead Dragon,” Lotton quietly explained. “It is something Tangwen created using a mixture of necromantic skills. In terms of power, it is about as strong as a Dracolich. Naturally, it is responsible for guarding this area and the Dragonbone Abyss behind here which contains countless dragon skeletons.”
“It is as strong as a Dracolich?” Stingham’s face turned green.
Even Stingham, as stupid as he normally was, knew that Dracoliches created by the Evil Dragon Bishops using dragon bones, dragon crystals, and Evil Dragon particles were as powerful as the dragons raised by the Nine Great Families and five to six gate arcane masters.
“Lotton, how are we going to deal with this undead dragon?” Ayrin asked as he looked at the twisting shadow before him with a face full of fighting intent.
It seemed like the undead dragon was unable to sense their presence as it circled around for a while in the sky and then returned back down to the ground and began greedily devouring the water formed by the Lunar Spring Essence streaming down from the dragon skeleton.
As the crystal clear water entered the undead dragon’s mouth and flowed through the black gases and shadows which made up its body, it turned into countless tiny droplets which ultimately disappeared by the time they reached the undead dragon’s stomach.
“The dragon comes here several times a day to drink this water, but afterwards, it will always go to patrol the Dragonbone Abyss,” Lotton said.
“So we will wait for when it goes away to patrol the Dragonbone Abyss to steal the Lunar Spring Essence?” Ayrin inquired. “Does it depend on this water produced by the Lunar Spring Essence to exist?”
“The arcane energy contained within the Lunar Spring Essence should be necessary to maintain one of the arcane skills used by Undead Bishop Tangwen to create this undead dragon.” Lotton slowly raised his head as he looked at all of the “spirits” floating around him and said, “But ultimately, he plans on creating an army of undead warriors by relying on this Lunar Spring Essence.”
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