Winter had arrived. The chilly wind howled ferociously as large snowflakes floated through the air like goose down, causing even the long term residents of the Dark Forest, the forest trolls, to shiver with cold and feel frostbitten. It was a good thing that Han Shuo had brought enough rations and thick clothes upon visiting this time, otherwise this cruel winter would’ve been a disaster for the forest trolls.
Han Shuo and the forest trolls ventured deeper into the Dark Forest over the next couple of days. Their progression this time didn’t take them directly into the depths towards the south. They veered towards the west from the very beginning.
Over the past couple of days, Han Shuo also had the forest trolls craft a crude carriage for himself and he silently practiced the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens”. This Art needed to infuse the meridians of the hands and legs with magical yuan, and then circulate magical yuan according to a particular circulation route before being able to fly through the air.
After experiencing the foundational training of the solid realm, open passages, and molded spirit realms, now that he’d reached the true demon realm, Han Shuo’s speed in practicing the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens” was much faster than when he’d initially trained in the “Glacial Mystical Spellfire”. Because the meridians had already been opened and reinforced, Han Shuo didn’t feel the slightest bit of obstruction as he circulated his magical yuan according to the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens”.
Over the last few days, Han Shuo didn’t continue to remain within the carriage. He came up with random excuses and secretly tried to fly through the air with the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens”. Once he understood how to deploy it, a bit of practice and mastering its knacks was still needed in order to truly fly. Han Shuo tried many times and could only hover. Because he still wasn’t adept at controlling direction, he fell from high heights multiple times.
On this particular day, the blizzard stopped its ravaging of the land. The forest trolls also stopped in front of a mountain valley. Han Shuo was in the back, still attempting to quickly master the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens”. When he discovered that the forest trolls suddenly stopped, he immediately stopped practicing and quickly rushed to the front from the back.
“Liaison, the mountain valley ahead should be where the elves live. Two of our children saw a large amount of elves appear near this area a long time ago.” When Han Shuo walked to the old priest, he pointed at the snow covered mountain valley and explained respectfully to Han Shuo.
He took a deep breath in and narrowed his eyes, looking into the distance. It was a pity that due to the cover of the accumulated snow, the trees and ground were all covered and thus Han Shuo couldn’t actually make out anything in the distance.
A string of mysterious incantation chanted out lowly from Han Shuo’s mouth as an oily green ring of light flew out in front of him, making for the snow covered mountain valley.
“Life Reconnaissance” was a journeyman magic of the necromancy major, and something that Han Shuo had just started to grasp recently. “Life Reconnaissance” had no use in attacking, it was as its name indicated, a spell that probed for life. It was useful in unfamiliar environments and unknown surroundings.
Han Shuo narrowed his eyes to sense things as soon as this magic had been deployed. He didn’t sense any traces of life wherever the “Life Reconnaissance” spell flew over. When the magic had circled the mountain valley, it vanished without a trace due to a lack of mental strength.
“There are no signs of life within the mountain valley. However, we can still take a look. If the elves do live here, they must’ve left signs on the trees. It’d be best if we can discover the elves’ homes here.” Han Shou thought for a bit and instructed the old priest.
Han Shuo then took the lead with the forest troll warriors, with the hunters and priests bringing up the rear. They slowly moved alertly towards the depths of the mountain valley. As their feet creaked through the packed down snow, the forest troll warriors waved the weapons in their hands and knocked the snow off the top of the trees, kicking vigorously at the snow that had accumulated on the ground, trying to see if there were any clues.
A shout of astonishment came from a young forest troll. Han Shuo’s ears captured this exclamation as his body flashed like lightning towards that location, but when he stood at the source of the sound, he discovered that the forest troll who’d cried out had already vanished without a trace.
His brow furrowing, Han Shuo paid attention to the sounds of disturbance all around and then circled the accumulated snow a few times. He finally stood on top of the messy, snowy ground and suddenly stomped down hard.
Han Shou’s body suddenly freefell with a plonk and he landed in a pitch black cave within the span of a breath. The startled cries of the young forest troll were still sounding from a corner not too far in the distance. It was quite ear piercing in the pitch black darkness of the hole.
Han Shuo’s body had now adjusted to the darkness as his eyes rolled around, discovering that the cave he was in continued on through to someplace beneath the ground. He looked carefully and discovered that the entrance to this cave was quite spacious. The ground leading downwards from the entrance was a bit messy as there were many traces of footprints.
Could it be that the elves who worshipped the goodness of nature and loved the forest all lived underground? Han Shuo was a bit confused. He activated the “Art of the Demonic Ninth Heavens” after looking around dumfounded for a bit. His body slowly floated upwards and he punched upwards where he’d landed through the ground, destroying the snow covering overhead.
The forest troll, who had accidentally fallen down just now, had only slowly grown accustomed to the darkness after flailing around in surprise for a bit. He felt his way around and slowly climbed out as well.
A weird whistling sound suddenly traveled from the depths of the ground. Han Shuo gave a start of surprise as he once again released the “Life Reconnaissance” magic and aimed it towards the source of the sounds from the depths.
When the “Life Reconnaissance” magic was released, Han Shuo discovered immense traces of life and gave a great start of fright. He abruptly rushed out from the cave, threw his head back and whistled sharply.
When the old priest heard Han Shuo’s cry, he came searching for Han Shuo from a far distance away. The forest troll, who’d fallen down, had also crawled out at this point. The forest troll warriors who were observing the situation in the surroundings all rushed over with their weapons, shoveling the snow away from the cave and revealing a deep cave that could contain three or four people walking abreast.
Several arrows whistled fiercely as they were shot from the mouth of the cave, scaring the forest trolls who had stuck their heads out to take a look. The old priest’s face grew angry and was about to give the order to attack the creatures within the cave, but Han Shuo reached out a hand and stopped him.
The elves greatly loved nature and naturally wouldn’t live in such a dark and gloomy place. Han Shuo understood this and thus he hadn’t had the forest trolls immediately make a move.
Several figures shot out from the mouth of the cave with a whoosh. Their sharp ears, handsome and beauty features were the unique trademarks of the elves, but these elves had black or darkly purpled colored skin and white hair, appearing all the more different.
“It’s the dark elves!” The old priest immediately exclaimed when he saw these strange elves appear.
Han Shuo finally reacted after the old priest’s cry. This tribe was also made up of elves, but they’d forsaken peace, nature, and worship of the goddess of nature. They worshipped the queen of the night, Rose, instead. Living in the gloomy underground world for a long period of time had caused their skin to turn black and dark purple.
Their natures were evil as they burned and looted everywhere. Their society was a matriarchal one as females were mainly in positions of power. Within the underground world, they were like the forest trolls, an evil race full of villainy.
After the first couple of dark elves dashed out, even more of them slowly poured out. When they appeared, they first guarded the entrance to the cave as they stared in an unfriendly fashion at Han Shuo and the forest trolls, grasping weapons in their hands.
Han Shuo waved his hands and indicated for the old priest to not make any moves at the moment, and for everyone to slowly back up and spread out behind them. However, he also had everyone brandish their weapons against the dark elves, in case they suddenly made a move.
The beautiful female dark elves wore revealing outfits, displaying tantalizing bodies from all of them. Although it was the winter season, they still didn’t seem to be willing to cover the skin on their bodies. Although the dark purple skin was bizarre, it had another sort of enthralling allure.
After a while, a beautiful, dark elf noblewoman, who looked quite stately and opulent, walked out from the cave. She was wearing a soft, leather jacket and was subtly revealing her beautiful legs with a fey air about her.
When the beautiful dark elf madame walked out from within the cave, she looked askance at the forest trolls in the surroundings and gave a coy laugh. She asked in the common tongue, “So it’s our brave forest troll friends. What are you doing here?”
The old priest also knew that they’d come looking for the wrong people at this time. As the sage of the forest trolls, the old priest’s experience was also quite broad. He naturally understood that the dark elves also weren’t those of the light. He snorted lightly and responded, “Our children recently discovered the traces of a large group of elves. Because us forest trolls hold deep hatred for the elves, we’ve come to destroy them.”
The fey, beautiful madame had a much friendlier attitude after his words had been spoken. She nodded, “We also have a deep grudge with those who live on the ground. They enter the underground world every now and then to attack us. The large numbers of elves you discovered must have come to do battle with us. Hehe, we’ve long since heard the brave ferocity of your forest troll tribe on the ground. It looks like we have a common enemy.”
The old priest was silent for a bit after she’d spoke and turned to ask Han Shuo respectfully, “Liaison, what should we do now?”
Han Shuo actually wanted to rob the dark elves, but he didn’t know just how many they had in numbers or how strong their fighting capabilities were. Thus, he weighed things up privately.
The fey dark elf madame was very surprised by the old priest’s inquiry towards Han Shuo. Although he wore a dark robe and had covered his entire body, his body was noticeably smaller than the forest trolls and it was obvious that he was of a different race. It naturally made the beautiful woman quite surprised to see the old priest’s respectful attitude.
“Brave friend, our family is facing the attacks from a dark dragon at the moment. If you’re willing to help us, we can offer you a cartload of gold and a cartload of jewels in thanks. If you can kill the dark dragon, everything on it will belong to you.” The dark elf madame suddenly spoke up when she saw Han Shuo stand there without a word.
Han Shuo started. He hadn’t expected that these dark elves would be facing the attacks of a dark dragon right now. Dark dragons were evil dragons and also liked to live beneath the surface. The dark elves were truly unlucky to run into a dark dragon.
Frowning, Han Shuo thought for a bit and felt that this dark elf’s suggestion was a bit tempting. Although the dark dragon was likely incredibly strong, but the combination of this group of dark elves and five hundred forest trolls, there should be a chance to kill him.
There was extraordinary treasure on each dragon that would cause anyone to tremble. Therefore, the rewards in killing a dragon was a temptation that many couldn’t resist.
“Let’s go see the underground world first. If the addition of us means we can handle that dark dragon, we’ll agree to your proposal.” Han Shuo thought for a moment and opened his mouth to say.
“I can promise that with the aid of your five hundred brave forest troll friends, that dark dragon is dead without a doubt. My name is Dana, you’re welcome to join us in the underground world.” The dark elf madame said happily and then gave a word of instruction to the dark elves.
The dark elves who had just rushed out of the ave once again re-entered the cave under Dana’s orders. Dana lifted her buttocks and walked in in the very end, waving a hand at Han Shuo and the old priest.
Following behind them meant that they could back out if anything went south. Therefore, when he saw that the dark elves went down first and Dana had stayed behind to look after them, Han Shuo felt that there should be no danger and he nodded at the old priest.
Han Shuo and the old priest was in front, the carriage holding the little skeleton was in the center. Five hundred forest trolls filtered in through the cave and started walking down into the underground world that the dark elves lived in.
The further they walked, the more spacious the cave became. There were even some red-brown rocks growing down in the depths, sending out a faint light and making so that it wasn’t so dark inside.