Chapter 29 - Three Ethereal Souls and Seven Corporeal Souls, Part One
After a day of travel, everyone could see some half-eaten carcasses of wild animals along the road. Signs of a big battle taking place could also be noticed; it was all very messy.
"Throne Master, the natives might have been gathered here!" Gao Xianzhi's said, his expression flickering.
Gu Hai nodded his agreement.
"Ah, I remember this place!" Little Rou suddenly shouted.
"This mountain...I remember this mountain. If we cross this mountain, we can see the herb garden that I used to guard! The Carefree Valley!" stated Little Rou, pointing at a mountain peak.
"Let's go!" Gu Hai's party quickly ran in that direction.
Everyone rapidly climbed their way to the peak and looked towards the far side together.
However, all they saw was a huge, charred mountain valley. It looked like a raging fire had burnt everything down. At the base of the mountain valley, there were some buildings as well. However, at this moment, they were almost on the verge of collapsing. The herb garden that Little Rou spoken of had been razed to the ground.
"It's here, but it's all burned down!?" said Little Rou, surprised.
"Everything here must have already been looted. There is nothing here!" stated Chen Tianshan in a regretful tone.
"Throne Master, something isn't right, where are the corpses? According to Little Rou, there should be a town of a thousand people? There isn't even a corpse here?" Gao Xianzhi asked, puzzled.
"Yeah!" Gu Hai narrowed his eyes as he inspected the surroundings.
"Right, benefactor, as a matter of fact, there is still a place here, inside which there is a good thing which cannot be carried!" Suddenly, Little Rou's expression flickered as she said.
"There is a spring which only the Valley Lord could enjoy and that too only once a year. I seemed to have heard that bathing in this spring can enhance one's cultivation!" said Little Rou.
"Spirit pool? There is spirit pool here?" Chen Tianshan's eyes went wide.
"What's a spirit pool?" Gu Hai asked curiously.
"It's a naturally formed Spirit Convergence Array and can gather a lot of Spirit Qi in the spring, and not an iota of Spirit Qi will leak out. However, as long as one bathed in it, the Spirit Qi would all be squeezed into one's body and help one’s cultivation. Moreover, the Spirit Qi inside the spirit pool is warm and will not lead to any sequelae!" explained Chen Tianshan in a rather excited manner.
"Where is the spirit pool?" Gu Hai looked at Little Rou.
"It's inside a cave behind this mansion; it's hidden very secretly. I will lead benefactor there!" Little Rou beamed with joy as she could finally help her benefactor.
The group quickly made their way into the mountain valley.
In the charred mountain valley, everything was falling into pieces. Among these ruins was a big mansion, and half of it had collapsed too.
"Throne Master, please look there!" suddenly, Gao Xianzhi's countenance changed as he said.
Inside the tattered mansion, a few hundred corpses were lying around and all of them were charred and cut into pieces. All the corpses seemed to have been gathered here.
"All the corpses are gathered here?" A sliver of surprise appeared on Chen Tianshan's face.
Gu Hai's eyes immediately focused as he became vigilant; he quickly turned his head and check the surroundings.
"Throne Master, there is nobody inside the valley, we already checked it from the mountain!" Gao Xianzhi stated, furrowing his brows.
"Then, who gathered all these corpses here?" Chen Tianshan was perplexed.
Gu Hai's eyebrows twitched before he took a long, deep breath and said, "Let's first go to the spirit pool!"
"En!" everyone nodded with mixed emotions gripping their hearts.
After everyone crossed the mansion ruins, a hidden cave suddenly came into view. In the surroundings of the cave, there was a pile of charred woods, seemingly when the fire came burning down, the charred woods had blocked the cave entrance; preventing anyone from discovering the cave. However, at the moment, the charred woods had been removed, and there were also some footprints on the ground.
"It's here!" cried Little Rou.
Gu Hai and Gao Xianzhi, on the other hand, squinted their eyes and became vigilant as they stopped.
"Let's go!?" Chen Tianshan shouted.
"Someone had gone inside, or maybe, someone is inside!" Gao Xianzhi said in a solemn tone.
"Someone?" Chen Tianshan's expression flickered as he also raised his guard.
The moment the three humans and a serpent raised their guards, a sound suddenly came from inside the cave.
The voice was rather loud yet when it rang in everyone's ear, they only felt a sense of peace, as if they were listening to the sound of Buddha. In the blink of an eye, everyone became calm.
In contrast, Gu Hai's countenance changed as he became ever more vigilant.
Gradually, an old monk dressed in kasaya walked out of the cave. The old monk's visage was full of mercy. The monk was also carrying a corpse in each hand, it seemed that they had died long ago. The corpses were covered in bruises. Looking at their faces, they should have died of suffocation.
"So it was Throne Master Gu, how rude of me!" the old monk said with a slight smile.
"Does great master know me?" asked Gu Hai as the look on his face flickered.
The old monk took a look at Little Rou in Gu Hai's arms and said with a slight smile, "The heavens care for every living thing. Throne Master Gu punished the evil just for an unrelated snake! How could this Lowly Monk not remember it?"
Gao Xianzhi and Chen Tianshan looked at each other. Just as they entered this small world, they encountered a group of people surrounding Little Rou, and this monk was in the crowd?
"May I ask grand master's name?" Gu Hai said respectfully.
"This Lowly Monk is 'Lian Sheng'!" the old monk replied, smiling.
"Greetings, Grandmaster Lian Sheng! I wonder if these bodies were gathered by Grandmaster Lian Sheng?" Gu Hai asked curiously.
"That's right. Everyone, please wait a moment, there are still two bodies remaining for me to gather for their burial!" Grandmaster Lian Sheng stated with a smile.
"Alright!" Gu Hai nodded.
Slowly, Lian Sheng walked to the ruins of the mansion and placed the two corpses inside with the others.
"Throne Master?" Chen Tianshan looked at the cave rather anxiously.
Gu Hai only shook his head instead; indicating that Chen Tianshan should be patient.