Chapter 740 – The Cruel and Disorderly Mountains
Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Tianliang County was the most famous county on the continent. A thousand years ago, this place was home to the Liang Household, the Chen clan, the Zhou clan, and the now-destitute Wang clan. The last two dynasties to reign over the continent had both arisen from this county, and the county had been witness to an endless stream of experts, like those emperors, or Chen Xuanba, or Zhu Luo, or Wang Po.
With the establishment of the Great Zhou Dynasty, Tianliang County's status became even more unique, as it was now regarded as the ancestral homeland. Whether in taxation or administration, it received the best treatment. The Daoist church within Xunyang City also had the highest status of all of the Orthodoxy's Daoist churches. It also gradually began to encompass more land, eventually becoming the largest county or province on the continent.
On a map, the present Tianliang County looked like a dagger. Hanqiu City was the hilt, and Xunyang City was on the edge of the dagger. Above it was a vast territory of land similar to the body of the dagger.
This dagger was pointed straight at the north, the endless plains of snow, the territory of the demons.
Of course, the northernmost thousand-some li of Tianliang County were, excluding the ten or so forts and two army headquarters, sparsely inhabited and extremely desolate. Humanity had never been able to establish effective control over this area, let alone flourish here, because this place was simply too close to the demons.
Regardless of the situation in the world, in the northern reaches of Tianliang County, the war between the humans and demons had not truly ceased for even a single day.
In the early spring of last year, the Demon Army began to move south, causing the situation here to grow even more tense, and even bloodier. The plains which had once been desolate and deserted were now covered in smoke and dust as uncountable numbers of cavalry charged against each other. Even in the sky, those flying carriages that were rarely seen in the capital and the vicious, strange beasts controlled by the demons clashed high up in the cold air like the callous eyes of a god.
The sound of fighting shook the sky as the cavalry of both sides charged at each other like two mighty floods, sending blood and Qi flying everywhere. In a very short span of time, an innumerable amount of human cavalry had toppled over and died. Similarly, many of the demons' most frightening wolf cavalry had been entrapped in the arrays set up by humans and torn into countless disgusting pieces of flesh.
Similar to their perspectives on life, the blood of the Human race and the Demon race were of completely different colors. Under the backdrop of the snowy plains, they made for a most breathtaking contrast, yet as more and more lives were lost, the red and green blood had no choice but to finally mingle. The corpses also began to pile up, and regardless of whether their deaths had been glorious or nauseating, it was impossible to pry them apart.
As it was impossible to even separate the dead, those still alive were naturally squeezed together. The armies of both sides were difficult to distinguish from each other, now merged into a single black tide that completely engulfed the vast plain of snow. In such a crowded and intense battlefield, the arrays of both the Human race and the Demon race were forcefully torn apart by bloody Qi. Occasionally one could hear the anguished cry of an array master about to die as he suffered a backlash. Occasionally, a human cultivator or demon expert would soar into the sky, killing out a space in the black tide as they attempted to escape. Soon after, they would be drowned once more under the black tide and seen no more.
The occasional flash of light in the black tide was the explosive dispersal of star radiance. Every flash of light meant that a Star Condensation cultivator had died, his star radiance dispersing into the surroundings.
Even if Xue Xingchuan were reincarnated, Xiao Zhang stepped onto the field, or the gigantic figures of the Demon Generals in the depths of the snowy plains began to move, they would not have much effect on this sort of battle.
This was a war, desperate but extremely fair. The final outcome depended on every person that participated in this battle.
Of course, every person had to work together in order to have an effect on this war. The moment they separated, their effectiveness began to drop until it was reduced to nil.
Take, for instance, the small squad from the Mount Song Army that was making its way through the disorderly mountains to the east of the plain. They were on the verge of being completely annihilated, but such an event would have no effect on this war.
The problem was that everyone in this squad wanted to survive. Their lives meant quite a lot to them, so they had to continue fighting, even if they were clearly no match for their opponents.
This squad from the Mount Song Army was retreating from the battlefield not because they had deserted out of fear, but because they had received orders to evacuate a heavily wounded array master in advance.
Array masters played one of the most important roles on the battlefield. Spreading out an array required that one's sea of consciousness and star radiance form an inseverable connection with the array. This was very demanding on a cultivator, so even the most mediocre of array masters needed to be at Ethereal Opening. Moreover, the moment the array was broken, the array master would suffer the most terrible of backlashes. Thus, an array master was also a role on the battlefield in which it was very easy to die.
It was one of the most important roles, but also the one with the highest casualty rate, so it was only right that array masters received the greatest respect from soldiers, and were also placed under the greatest protection.
In order that the heavily injured array master could receive treatment as quickly as possible, this squad of the Mount Song Army had paid a most bitter price. In reaching these disorderly mountains, thirty soldiers had dwindled to fourteen.
They were being pursued by five wolf cavalry.
Rocks were sent flying, the ground shook, and dust flew into the air. The wolf cavalry had once more appeared before them.
The wolf cavalry were the most terrifying of the demons' troops. Their mounts were a sort of blood-drinking wolf that lived on the snowy plains and had enormous bodies and fur like iron needles. They possessed amazing speed and ruthless temperaments.
With a spray of rocks, five wolf cavalry burst out of the dust and surrounded the fourteen human soldiers.
These bloodthirsty wolves were around a zhang high, and the demons mounted atop were horned, their bodies covered in scale armor, their eyes a gloomy green. Their mouths, which were shaped like '人', dripped with stinking saliva.
Compared to the demon nobles that lived in Xuelao City, these demon soldiers were much more ugly and much more terrifying.
This was the true appearance of lower-level demons, and this was what demons looked like to humans.
The lowest level of demon soldiers could still resist against a human that had succeeded in Purification, but these were not the lowest level. These were the elite wolf cavalry.
Surrounded by five wolf cavalry, there was no path of retreat. The human soldiers were filled with despair, but no one surrendered. Instead, they tightened their grip on their weapons.
In the war between the Human race and the Demon race, rarely were people captured, and rarely did people surrender. The reason for this was very simple: demons did not have a habit of accepting surrenders.
From a certain perspective, the natural ruthlessness of the Demon race was a benefit to the humans, because they did not need to worry about desertion or betrayal.
It was precisely for this reason that many people had found it impossible to believe that the Mount Li Sword Sect's Liang Xiaoxiao would collude with the demons.
The battle began and was very quickly decided.
Although this small squad of the Mount Song Army could be said to have perfectly demonstrated the results of their arduous training, attacking and defending with sublime coordination, they were still no match.
Violent waves of Qi spread out, permeated with the scent of blood. The hard rock of the mountains was scored by the claws of wolves.
The first exchange had lasted for a few seconds, and three human soldiers had died.
The demon soldiers had also paid a price, but it was only that one of them had their horn cut off.
The cold wind stirred up the dry snow and covered the scratches left by the wolf claws.
The demon who had had his horn cut off was furious. He let off a series of enraged howls, then lifted the human corpse in front of him with his spear.
With a rip, the corpse of this human soldier was torn in two.
Blood rained down.
The demon soldier grabbed the upper half of the corpse, brought it to his mouth, and slowly began to chew on it.
The lower half of the corpse did not fall to the ground, but instead was taken up in the mouth of his wolf mount.
Kakakaka. In the deathly stillness of the mountains, the only sound that could be heard was that of bones being gnawed apart.
Blood dripped from both the demon's mouth and his mount's, falling onto the ground.