Chapter 362: Monsters in the Tunnel
Although Xiao Ning and Hui Yue slowly walked through the tunnel, their speed had increased quite drastically since the other experts were no longer tailing them. Although they still needed to be attentive of traps, the majority of them had already been triggered.
From time to time, the two experts would see blood on the floor and the walls showing that one of the Saints had been injured from the traps, but it seemed that no one had perished yet. The traps were vicious but after so many years these traps were no longer as strong as they were made to be. Add to that the fact that these Saints were all experts which helped them deal with these traps in the most efficient way.
“I wonder if they found any treasure so far,” Hui Yue commented casually as he glanced down the tunnel in front of them. Some places the tunnel walls and floor had been dug up but no hidden room were seen within these holes.
“It’s hard to say,” Xiao Ning said with a shrug of his shoulders. “What are you going to do if they truly find all the treasure on the way from now until the tunnel ends?” He asked curiously. Although he had been with Hui Yue for quite some time now, he still found that he did not understand this white-haired young man.
Hesitating for a moment Hui Yue was clearly uncertain how to answer. “I guess it depends on what treasure they obtained,” He finally said slowly. “If it happens to be medicinal pills or herbs then I’m afraid I might take them. If it turns out to be weapons or armor then I don’t really mind.”
“If it’s a rare treasure like soul shadows, magical items, inscriptions, or other interesting things then I am afraid I’ll take those too.” He continued.
“But don’t worry, even if the treasure is from other experts we’ll still split it evenly,” He assured the friend by his side as Xiao Ning nodded his head absentmindedly.
“I am a Saint of the Taiyang Kingdom,” He suddenly said. “I am known as the Shield of Taiyang. For me to fight fellow Saints over a few treasures would leave me with no face. Even more so killing fellow Saints is something I am not willing to do unless I have to. On the other hand, if the Saints from Yueliang were to be robbed or parish then it would not matter too much,” He continued, and Hui Yue understood what he meant.
“I might rob the Saints of Taiyang, but I won’t kill them. If we fight against Taiyang’s Saints, I’ll fight alone but in that case, the treasure I get will also be mine,” He said stating his terms, and this was something that made Xiao Ning nod his head in relief. He had feared that Hui Yue would not give him any face and would slaughter Taiyang and Yueliang’s Saints indiscriminately. To give up treasures for the sake of the Saint’s lives, that was without a doubt a good trade.
The two experts continued onwards without paying too much attention to one another; instead, they focused on the tunnel they were walking through. Moving swifter than before, these two Saints quickly noticed that they had caught up to the group that had left before them, but Xiao Ning nor Hui Yue felt like overtaking them. So they kept fifty meters between one another while slowly walking behind them.
The group of Saints in front of them felt a cold sweat break out, and their hearts were beating rapidly as their eyes constantly glanced behind them. It was clear that these two experts were going to use them to deal with the traps, and when the time came, they would probably steal any treasure they found.
“They are monsters!” One of the experts at the front muttered as he skillfully disabled another trap slowly moving forwards. The other experts could only agree yet none of them said anything as they feared that the two experts would hear them.
“We are from the Taiyang Kingdom!” The one who had muttered at first said with a stern expression on his face. “I will not be bullied by someone who is supposed to be my comrade. Although that kid Xiao Ning is protecting is strong, I doubt he is capable of defeating all of us at the same time. If he can’t kill us, do you really think that Xiao Ning, the shield of Taiyang, would dare to kill experts from his own kingdom?”
This logic made sense to the others who were walking, yet even so, none of them stopped to test whether or not Xiao Ning actually dared to attack them. If they died, Xiao Ning could easily blame other Saints to clear his name if anyone found out.
The reason these Saints, although certain that Xiao Ning wouldn’t interfere, did not dare to stop and directly challenge the Emperor was because they knew that if they had Xiao Ning’s strength, then they would not care about which kingdom the opponents were from. Although they were all part of Taiyang Kingdom and were willing to protect it against an outside force, their allegiance lay with their own families and the factions they supported. Getting rid of supporters of other factions would be something they’d enjoy doing.
It just so happened that Xiao Ning supported the King. The reason he chose to support the King was simple. He did not want to be used to fight for the throne; he just wanted to support whoever was the ruler. Who he wished to support when the King died, completely depended on who won the power struggle. Even Xiao Ning did not know yet.
“They seemed to have guessed your personality quite well,” Hui Yue grinned as he looked at the experts in front of them. Their opinions were voiced so loud that Hui Yue could easily hear it.
“If they chose to attack me, I will return their kindness,” Xiao Ning said casually. “But if they ignore me and go straight for you, then although I owe you a lot, I will not take sides.” His expression was clearly apologetic, but Hui Yue did not mind as he shrugged his shoulders.
These experts were two or three star Saints. Even Xiao Ning who was a four star Saint could defeat all three. Although it would be hard for him to defeat them it was possible, and if Xiao Ning could do it, who was to say that Hui Yue couldn’t? Just by controlling Lan Feng’s power his strength rose to the fourth star. Imagine if the bird personally controlled the body, or if he turned into the wolf form while controlling Lan Feng’s powers. He would then be even more dangerous than he was in his human form, not to mention Lan Feng’s divine phoenix form. The two had so much hidden strength that although Xiao Ning was not willing to step in, beating Hui Yue would be incredibly hard unless quite a few Saints worked together to get rid of him. Even if he had the strength, he could only use it for a limited amount of time which of course was an issue.
Hearing Hui Yue sigh, Xiao Ning completely misunderstood the reason, and he gently patted the younger male’s shoulder. “Don’t worry, even if they beat you I won’t let them kill you,” He said showing he truly valued their friendship and his words made Hui Yue laugh out loud. Without correcting the misunderstanding, Hui Yue smiled at the older man. “Thank you,” He said as he truly felt grateful. It was rare to meet such an honest and honorable person like Xiao Ning.
Suddenly Hui Yue’s laughter died out, and he stopped in his tracks. “Seems like someone is finally catching up to us,” He said seriously as he looked behind them. At first, Xiao Ning could not hear anything, but after a few minutes, he heard rapid steps of people alongside seeing a soft light which shone through the tunnel. Clearly, this group was not going to rely on the light stones on the walls and instead had their own.
“What a waste,” Hui Yue mumbled. He too had light stones with him but considering that he did not know what lay ahead, he was hesitant to use them. Xiao Ning seemed to think the same.
“These people are not from the Taiyang Kingdom,” Xiao Ning commented casually, and his words made Hui Yue grin evilly. It was pretty much the same as saying they could go steal their treasures.
Although Hui Yue tried to be a fair person, he was aware that he needed to improve his strength. These experts were all higher ranked than him, so he sighed. It was their own fault for being unable to defeat an Emperor ranked expert.
Looking at one another for the last time, Hui Yue noticed the cheeky smile on Xiao Ning’s face and with a smile of his own the two of them charged at the incoming group. Neither knew how many expert each side had, and no one truly cared. Both sides were certain of their strength.
When Hui Yue rushed away, the experts who were in the front finally felt a bit of relief, yet in their hearts, they pitied the experts who thought it was a good idea to fight those two.
“Those two are way more dangerous than any trap within this tunnel,” One of the experts commented. “They are without a doubt monsters no one wishes to encounter.” Having said this, the group of four once more started to move forward. This time much faster than before as they hoped to be able to escape the eyes of this monster.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Deng Wu’s voice sounded throughout the tunnel. His eyes were frosted over, and his voice was so cold that one could easily detect the hostility. By his side was Rong Ming and Rong Xing alongside Gao Yan. A pair of experts obstructed the four of them, both clearly Emperor ranked.
“It’s fine, pass us the beautiful woman and all your treasures and we will let you live,” One of the Emperors said with a lascivious smile on his face. His eyes were filled with greed as he looked at Rong Xing licking his lips from time to time.
The words spoken were enough for Deng Wu to become furious, yet although his blood was boiling with hate, he did not act upon it at all. Gao Yan, on the other hand, had to hold back Rong Ming with all his power.
“I am sorry, but these treasures belong to us, and this beautiful maiden is not someone we can give away. She is our goddess so you can have her over our dead bodies.” He asked, his face filled with an evil grin beneath his ice-cold eyes.
Hearing the words Rong Ming, Rong Xing, and Gao Yan were all taken by surprise. It was obvious that the experts in front of them were Emperors. How could they possibly fight them? Still, they decided to do as Deng Wu said. They had, after all, no other option.
Looking at Deng Wu with shock was not only his friends but also the two Emperors; they were completely dumbfounded before they started laughing out loud. A mere King ranked expert was threatening them? This was without a doubt the most hilarious thing they had ever heard, yet their laughter quickly stilled.
The expert in front of them, Deng Wu, was knowingly smiling as the energy ripples around him started to build. The strength of the king in front of them started to rise rapidly, and it did not stop as soon as it reached the Emperor rank. It kept climbing and the two experts who had been so proud of themselves suddenly stepped backwards while swallowing their saliva. It turned out that this entire grave was filled with monsters.