Holding a bloody cloth and watching the bloody words written on it, Tong Jihua’s face slowly turned icy.
“Call Yi Yuan over.” After thinking for a moment, Tong Jihua exclaimed that softly towards his subordinate outside and called him to perform the task.
Ten minutes later, Yi Yuan stood respectfully in front of Tong Jihua. “Elder Tong, are you looking for me?”
Tong Jihua passed the blood stained cloth to him. “An hour ago Tang Siqi and Lian Rou had left to Free Trade Street and was caught by Shadow Tower’s Blood Shadow. This are the terms Blood Shadow has requested. He requests that we bring Qin Bing’s head or Qin Bing himself to him in exchange for Tang Siqi and Lian Rou’s lives.”
“Lian Rou?!” Yi Yuan’s normally gentle face suddenly revealed a trace of shockingly murderous intent. “Shadow Tower’s Blood Shadow? One of the three shadow guards?”
“You know them too?” Tong Jihua was surprised.
Yi Yuan did not answer. Instead he asked, “What do you want me to do, having called me here, Elder Tong?”
“You?” Tong Jihua narrowed his eyes and shook his head. “It’s not like you’re Qin Bing. The reason I called you over isn’t to ask you to do anything. I just want you to pass this news to the sect master and let him decide what to do with it.”
“Why tell me to pass the news?” Light flashed across Yi Yuan’s eyes.
Anyone could send this news to the sect master. Tong Jihua had a lot of men, and the blood guards were available for him to order around for years. He didn’t need to specifically look for Yi Yuan to handle this matter at all.
Back at Purple Mist Sea, Yi Yuan had been famed for his intelligence for years. He had noticed some clues from Tong Jihua’s instructions.
“I have always liked those two girls. I don’t want them to die.” Tong Jihua fell into silence for a moment before slowly saying, “I know the sect master. I know what his decision will be. If anyone else is to send this message, then those girls will definitely end up dead.”
Yi Yuan’s expression turned cold.
“You are more familiar with Qin Bing. You can… inform Qin Bing about this.” Tong Jihua looked at him deeply. “Right now Qin Bing is the only one in the entire sect who may be able to change Sect Master’s mind. Plus, the person Blood Shadow has asked for is him. He has the right to know.”
Yi Yuan understood.
According to Tong Jihua’s words, if anyone else had notified Ying Xingran of this, he would have not told Qin Lie. He would directly order the Blood Spear to kill Blood Shadow instead.
—Ying Xingran would never risk Qin Lie’s life!
“I will seek out the sect master.” Yi Yuan lowered his waist and bowed deeply to Tong Jihua. He left only after speaking a soft thanks.
Along the way to Flame Volcano’s peak, with Tong Jihua’s banner, he was questioned by several guards multiple times and spent a whole hour before he finally saw the sect master Ying Xingran at the Procedural Hall.
The explained his purpose and submitted the bloody cloth Blood Shadow had sent over.
After taking a look at the blood cloth, his expression had also turned serious. He frowned and did not say anything.
Yi Yuan waited quietly.
After a while, Ying Xingran coughed for a moment, and with a slightly tired voice, he waved his hands and said, “You are also part of the Blood Spear, correct?”
Yi Yuan nodded.
“Alright. Then go to the back of the mountain and notify Lang Xie about this matter. Let him handle this.” Ying Xingran made the decision with difficulty. “Have Lang Xie kill that Blood Shadow. If he can rescue Tang Siqi and Lian Rou, then that would be the best outcome. If he really can’t, then, sigh, they’ll have to blame their own fates then.”
“Are we… not going to inform Qin Bing about this matter?” Yi Yuan’s heart hit rock bottom as he tried for one last time.
Ying Xingran’s expression changed as he said sternly, “Qin Bing must not know of this! I want Qin Bing to be ignorant of this matter from beginning to end!”
Yi Yuan quietly nodded as his heart slowly turned icy cold. He answered once, “Understood.”
He withdrew his usual gentle smile and walked down from Flame Volcano’s peak. At the intersection leading to the back of the mountain and the mountainside, his footsteps paused.
“No one is allowed to hurt my Lian Rou!” Yi Yuan exclaimed in a low tone before avoiding the mountain peak guards and suddenly rushed towards the mountainside.
Before long he had arrived at the cave Qin Lie was cultivating in and banged on the door heavily, exclaiming, “Qin Bing! It’s me! Yi Yuan!”
Qin Lie, who was figuring out the spirit diagrams frowned and put down the spirit tablet in his hands. He opened the door and let Yi Yuan in, saying indifferently, “What is it?”
After a pause, Qin Lie exclaimed with some surprise, “You look terrible.”
Yi Yuan was usually always cheerful, but today, his expression was dark, and there was some sort of faint madness surrounding his eyes. It caught Qin Lie off guard.
“Senior Sister Tang and Lian Rou were caught by Blood Shadow at Free Trade Street. Blood Shadow has given his terms. Either Armament Sect shows him your head immediately or they bring you to him alive so he can kill you personally.” Yi Yuan’s entire body was surrounded with a dangerous aura. “I have gone to the sect master, and the sect master has decided for Lang Xie to kill Blood Shadow. If Senior Sister Tang and Lian Rou’s lives can be saved, then it would be the best, but if they cannot, then they will abandon them.”
He looked deeply at Qin Lie and smiled coldly, “The sect master strictly forbids anyone from telling you this. He hopes that you will be kept in the dark from beginning to end!”
“Blood Shadow, Blood Shadow…” Qin Lie whispered twice and gradually understood.
The letter Liang Zhong had sent over earlier already mentioned that Blood Shadow had arrived in Armament City. He warned him to be careful.
In this period of time, he had been staying inside Armament Sect and figuring out the structure of the spirit diagrams inside his cave. Therefore, Blood Shadow could not find a chance to attack and perhaps that was why he had gotten anxious and attacked Tang Siqi and Lian Rou.
“It looks like you’ve already disobeyed the sect master’s orders. Are you not afraid?” Qin Lie gave Yi Yuan a glance.
“One reason I came to Armament Sect was to join Blood Spear and cultivate there. But my biggest reason is still Lian Rou.” Yi Yuan’s eyes were filled with murderous intent. “To me, Lian Rou is infinitely more important than joining the Blood Spear! For Lian Rou sake’s, I would even betray the sect if it is necessary, much less disobeying the sect master’s orders!”
Qin Lie’s expression shook.
He could not help but re-evaluate Yi Yuan again. At this moment, he discovered that the current Yi Yuan was completely different from usual.
The gentle smile he usually wore on his face was gone. When Yi Yuan turned dark, it was as if he could sense the same darkness and evil he usually found on Gao Yu.
He suddenly understood that this Yi Yuan was different from what he had imagined before. This guy was like a sharp blade that had been slipped into its sheath.
When a blade was sheathed, it would appear ordinary and plain. But as soon as it is unsheathed, it will immediately reveal its sharpness and true ruthlessness hidden within.
“I’ll come with you to the back of the mountain. We will meet Lord Lang Xie together.” Qin Lie stood up.
“Guess you still have some humanity in you after all.” Yi Yuan took in a deep breath. The darkness on his face subsided a little.
Two hours later.
Qin Lie and Yi Yuan arrived at the forest behind Flame Volcano. They saw Lang Xie and Feng Rong together.
“Blood Shadow?” A trace of worriness flashed across Feng Rou’s beautiful face. “This guy is an elder level expert, a death knight trained by the previous Shadow Tower tower lord, and a true bloodthirsty and crazy beast. Gray Shadow and Black Shadow are nothing compared to Blood Shadow, they’re practically just there to fill in the numbers. This Blood Shadow may be even harder to deal with than Liang Yangzu.”
“What is are the sect master’s intentions?” Lang Xie’s tone was calm.
Yi Yuan explained Ying Xingran’s position.
Feng Rong was shocked. She looked deeply at Yi Yuan and said, “So you’ve disobeyed the sect master’s orders then? You’ve told Qin Bing about this matter. Do you not want to stay in Armament Sect any longer?”
“For me, Lian Rou’s life is more important than everything else. I can sacrifice everything for Lian Rou,” Yi Yuan said while bowing his head.
Feng Rong was secretly moved, “Kid, you’re not too impressive in other aspects, but based on the fact that you can throw away everything for the woman you love alone, I will believe that you’re a good person.”
“Thank you for your praise, Instructor Feng.” Yi Yuan bowed.
“Naturally, the reason the sect master forbade Qin Bing from learning of this is to keep him from being distracted and so he doesn’t participate in this either.” Feng Rong felt a little headache coming on. “You ignored everything and actually dared to go against the sect master’s orders. We… are actually a bit afraid of this since this matter really is a bit troublesome.”
At this point, Feng Rong, Qin Bing, and Yi Yuan couldn’t help but look at Lang Xie.
They knew that Lang Xie’s attitude was of the utmost importance to them. There were some things that could be done only after Lang Xie had given his approval.
“Lang Xie…” Feng Rong exclaimed softly.
“Please save Lian Rou’s life, sire!” Yi Yuan knelt on one knee and begged.
“I want them alive.” Qin Lie did not kneel. He only stared directly at Lang Xie.
“I cannot guarantee their survival. But if you’re willing to take the risk, then I can try. Since Blood Shadow wants you alive, I can give you to him alive. As long as you can make sure that he can’t kill you with one hit, then I can guarantee your survival.” Lang Xie grew silent for a moment and stared deeply at Qin Lie, “If you want them to survive, then you can risk it with your own life. Are you willing to try?”
Feng Rong and Yi Yuan turned to look at Qin Lie.
“I’ll go,” Qin Lie nodded.
“Good.” A hint of approval appeared within Lang Xie’s eyes. “If this matter succeeds then we will not be punished by the sect master. But if any accidents occur, then we will all be facing his wrath. Therefore, you had all better be mentally prepared. Make sure that you won’t regret making your final decision.”
Feng Rong, Yi Yuan, and Qin Lie all nodded in unison.
“We will wait. We wait for nightfall. Once the day is dark, we will depart.” Lang Xie sat down. “Qin Bing, let me remind you this. Blood Shadow should be in the middle stage of the Netherpassage Realm. There shouldn’t be any Manifestation Realm martial practitioners who can survive a single strike from him, and you are only at the late stage of the Natal Opening Realm. You haven’t even reached the peak of it yet, so you had better be mentally prepared.”
“Make sure that you’ve readied all of your life saving techniques. Be ready to suffer a direct blow!” Feng Rong exclaimed.
“Brother Qin, thank you for today!” Yi Yuan said heavily.
Qin Lie nodded and sat in front of Lang Xie. He closed his eyes and quietly awaited nighttime.
“How can I survive a single hit from a martial practitioner in the middle stage of the Netherpassage Realm?” Qin Lie kept going over the problem in his mind, but he could not come up with any ideas whatsoever.
After the Natal Opening Realm, there was still the Manifestation Realm before the Netherpassage Realm. It was already hard enough to surpass a single realm, much less two.
He thought long and hard and realized that he still couldn’t figure out any way to ensure his own survival. He did not stop thinking.
But time did not wait for anyone. The sky gradually turned dark.
“Qin Bing, are you ready?” After a long while, Lang Xie asked one final time.
“Let’s go.” Qin Lie forcefully stood up.