Chapter 289: The Summoning of Ming Dong
Seeing how everyone was talking, Jian Chen looked at the large sculpture as well.
Suddenly, a blue robed elder came down from the sky. His facial characteristics were nothing out of the ordinary, but the very moment he had appeared, the World Essence in the air suddenly went still. An overwhelming amount of pressure over took it, causing everyone there to feel as if their heart would stop.
When the elder appeared, everyone else suddenly ceased talking and descended into a period of silence.
The elder floated in the air, standing high above even the heads of the Heaven Saint Masters. With an elderly voice, he spoke out, “I proclaim now that the bi-centurial Gathering of the Mercenaries has officially started. Every participant should remain standing while every other person should move back.
With the elder’s words, the sudden movements of the crowd could be heard as the men who were older than the rules dictated immediately began to move away.
“Jian Chen, take care of yourself!” Ming Dong spoke to Jian Chen before following the ground to leave.
As the amount of people lessened, there still remained several tens of thousands of people.
Seeing how the group in front of him was beginning to lessen, the elder spoke out once more, “The Gathering of the Mercenaries allow permits those under the age of fifty to participate. In the case that someone over the age of fifty tries, then they will suffer the harsh punishment from the barrier and be annihilated. For those who are over the age of fifty, leave now. This is your final warning.”
Several hundred men then left the group slowly with looks of disatisfaction.
With the final stragglers all gone, the elder waved his sleeves, causing several hundred black tokens to fly out toward the thousands of people below.
Jian Chen grabbed onto one of the tokens that fluttered down to him. It was around the size of his palm and was created by a material unknown to him. It was unnaturally hard and didn’t seem to be easily breakable. Furthermore, there was a strange energy that flowed in it.
The elder looked down onto the crowd and spoke, “This is the command token. The first competition will be a free-for-all in a special region that you will be sent to after the World Door opens. After that year, the top 500 people with tokens will qualify.” Cupping his hands, he spoke up to the air, “May the Elder open the World Door.”
The World Essence grew deathly still once more along with everyone else suddenly going motionless where even the breathing of people could be heard.
Suddenly, a massive amount of energy began to flow from the skies, attracting everyone in sight. Everyone could only see the first signs of energy being warped about in midair, and in two brief moments, a strong multicolored light could be seen from the rapidly expanding space. Quickly, a hundred meter wide hole could be seen with a large space of what could only be described as chaotic inside.
The pitch dark token in everyone’s hands began to glow a dark light before enveloping everyone within it, elevating them up into the air toward the hole.
Suddenly, a miserable cry could be heard as one of the men close to the tear in the sky began to melt quickly right in front of them. In a small amount of time, not even a single trace of their body could be seen remaining.
“For those over the age of fifty, they will incur the wrath of the World Door and will dissipate from the world itself. There is no need for panic, those under the age of fifty will be allowed in with no problems.” The floating elder spoke.
Many men began to look frightened as they began to struggle in midair. “I-I gi-give up! I don’t wish to participate anymore…” Unfortunately, they were already slowly rising into the air because of the energy that enveloped their body, they could only helplessly rise up into the air toward the hole.
“I gave you a chance before, that opportunity has nigh passed.” The elder spoke with a cold glare.
Another pain filled shriek could be heard coming from a man as he began to burn from the inside out alive. In a second, his body had disintegrated into the air.
“I beg of you, please let us go…”
“Please, I no longer wish to participate…”
A few men who were over the age of fifty that tried to take advantage of the crowd immediately tried to beg for forgiveness.
The elder narrowed his eyes as he looked at them with an impatient look. With a wave of his hands, the balls of energy began to accelerate toward the hole in the sky.
Following several cries of fear, those who were over the age of fifty were quickly burnt to ashes that were then burned up as well. This sight shocked everyone who witnessed it, and those who were older than fifty but had left earlier rejoiced to themselves secretly.
Afterward, all those who were remaining began to disappear from sight into the hole.
“Let me through, let me through, I wish to participate!” Suddenly, a voice behind the group could be heard as Ming Dong charged toward the ascending group with a pleading look at the floating elder.
The stares of every person there concentrated onto Ming Dong as if he were an idiot. The distribution of the tokens had already been finished, and the group was already disappearing into the chaotic space to start the competition. Just what reason would the elder have to stop to allow a single person entry?
Still raising into the air, Jian Chen turned to look at Ming Dong with a surprised look. He didn’t understand just what reason Ming Dong had for suddenly wanting to join the Gathering of the Mercenaries.
The floating elder furrowed his eyebrows together in annoyance as he looked at Ming Dong. Just as he was about to send him away, a sudden change in expression could be seen before a black token shoot toward Ming Dong’s hand, “Enter then.” He spoke softly.
In a split second, the elder’s treatment of Ming Dong had done a complete reversal; his voice wasn’t as cold as before. Instead, it was much warmer now.
Those who knew of the elder on a personal all dropped open their mouths in shock as they looked at him in shock.
“It seems that youth is no ordinary person.” A person whispered.
Jian Chen looked on with shock as well as he saw Ming Dong begin to rise up into the air after them. He felt confusion in his heart as he tried to figure out just what had just happened. A flash of concern came over his face. The elder’s words were quite clear, after they pass through the World Door, it would be a free for all. With Ming Dong being a Primary Great Saint master, the amount of danger he would have to face would be obscenely absurd. Even if they were together, Jian Chen would be powerless to protect him.
The token in Jian Chen’s hand brought him through the hole and dropped him in the middle of a thick forest. Everywhere he looked, all he could see were trees.
Suddenly, multiple blurs came flashing down from the sky down next to him.
Seeing just who was right next to him, Jian Chen let out a smile, “Ming Dong, so it is you! How excellent, to think that you would be right besides me!” The person who had fell next to him had been unexpectedly Ming Dong.
As if shocked at the sudden shout, he reflexively brought out his Saint Weapon in preparation to fight. But as soon as he heard the familiar sound, a smile lit up his face as he absorbed his weapon, “Jian Chen, so it’s you! This is great, with us two combined, we’ll definitely be able to forge ahead.”
“Ah, Ming Dong, weren’t you against participating in the Gathering of the Mercenaries? Why is it that you’ve suddenly changed your mind? That strong elder had unexpectedly allowed you to enter as well.” Jian Chen’s face held some confusion.
Hearing this, Ming Dong’s face went blank, “Even I don’t know why I suddenly decided to participate. I felt as if someone was calling me here and the feeling was growing stronger and stronger. In the end, I suddenly found myself unable to control myself before coming here.”
“What, you felt someone calling you? Then can you still sense the calling right now?” Jian Chen was shocked at this strange development.
Ming Dong closed his eyes to concentrate before nodding slightly, “I can still feel it, but the call is much weaker than before.”
Jian Chen narrowed his eyes in thought, “Then can you sense where the call is coming from?”
“From the east!” Ming Dong pointed.
Jian Chen looked toward the direction Ming Dong was pointing with a thoughtful glance. “Then let’s go there and see just what is calling you.” With that, Jian Chen and Ming Dong began to walk toward the east.
The place Jian Chen and Ming Dong were in was an isolated mountain range with a sinister environment as multiple poisonous insects and vipers could be found.
Suddenly, Ming Dong’s body plunged into the earth, he had unexpectedly stepped into a barely visible swampland.
Ming Dong slapped at the swamp in order to fly out, but before he could move, his face suddenly winced. “Something has bitten onto my leg, help me!”
With great shock, Jian Chen immediately grabbed onto Ming Dong’s shoulders. Ming Dong immediately flew into the air, and at the same time, a poisonous viper as thick as Jian Chen’s head followed after him with both of its fangs clamped tightly onto Ming Dong’s legs.
Jian Chen’s eyes flashed as he brought out his Light Wind Sword. With a quick slash, the snake was cut into several pieces, causing blood to rain down below.
Jian Chen caught Ming Dong as he fell from the sky. Although the snake had been cut apart from him, the head of the snake was still attached to Ming Dong’s legs.
With another wave of his hand, the sword in his hand flashed once more before splitting the snake head in two. As for the area where the snake had bitten, the venom had already entered Ming Dong’s wound, turning the immediate area around it blue while rapidly spreading.
Ming Dong took out a white bottle from his Space Belt and began to sprinkle the area around it while muttering, “It’s a good thing I bought some antidote from Walaurent City. This type of antidote is quite famous around the continent that can cure hundreds of poisons. The only bad thing about it is its price.”
Jian Chen looked at the wound on Ming Dong’s leg, “Are you able to walk then?”
After treating the poison, Ming Dong began to flex both of his legs before smiling, “It’s a good thing the wound isn’t too deep. There is no problem, let’s keep moving.”
“Be careful then, we’ll keep going, but we don’t know what’s in this place yet. There’s still plenty of people we have yet to see.” Jian Chen said.
“Wait a moment!” Ming Dong walked up to the carcass of the snake before cutting it open. Extracting a monster core from it, he laughed, “This type of stuff shouldn’t be thrown away, or else it would be a waste of money!”
Jian Chen couldn’t help but laugh. The snake was only at the Class 3 level, so a Class 3 Monster Core was not something he had thought to be valuable.”
After this harrowing experience, the two continued on their journey with caution. Although they were very cautious, the hidden dangers of the area continued to surprise them as they continued. The areas that seemed to be solid ground turned out to be swamps that acted like quicksand. Even Jian Chen had been victim to this several times, but he had been able to quickly escape.
While in the mountain range, they would come across a few magical beasts. Most of them were Class 3 or Class 4 Magical Beasts, and the majority of them were quite poisonous.
Jian Chen and Ming Dong continued forward for another half day before Jian Chen suddenly halted. His ears began to tremble as he waited for movement.
After a moment, Jian Chen let out a smile, “After half a day of walking, we’ve finally come across another person. This place is quite large for us to take this long to see a person if there is several hundred thousand people here.”
“Jian Chen, there’s someone nearby?” Ming Dong looked at Jian Chen with surprise, but there was a look of joy on his face.
Jian Chen nodded his head, “Correct, there’s just one person not too far away from here. From the sounds of things, he’s coming toward us.”
“How strong do you think he is? If he’s an Earth Saint Master, then we’ll be in trouble.” Ming Dong had a serious look on his face now.
Jian Chen clapped Ming Dong’s shoulders casually, “Don’t you worry. The amount of Earth Saint Masters under the age of fifty is quite low. How could it be that easy to come across one? Let’s go, let’s go see just how strong this person is and just how we’ll obtain his token.”