EIF - Book 03 Chapter 109: Vengeful Woman
No matter where Gu Hai’s group went after encountering a stone stele, the stone steles appeared again.
“Your Majesty, this matter is too strange. How could someone know where we are going in advance? Furthermore, they even anticipated where we would go after we changed our route. It seems like they placed these stone steles here long ago?” Gao Xianzhi said with an unsightly expression.
“Indeed. The stranger thing is that there is no one aside from the stone steles. What are they doing?” Mu Chenfeng said with a complicated expression.
“Stop!” Gu Hai’s expression suddenly changed.
The flying ship suddenly stopped.
“Mister Gu?” Long Sanqian looked worriedly at Gu Hai.
Long Sanqian’s subordinates also appeared worried. After all, the scene before them seemed too strange.
“We cannot continue forward!” Gu Hai said sullenly.
“Huh?” Everyone felt bewildered.
Now, the sky was already gloomy. Dark clouds had blocked out the sun in the surroundings, and mountains towered around them.
Gu Hai’s face sank. “The person erecting the stone steles seems to be able to predict our journey. No, we cannot continue. They are luring us somewhere. Go back the way we came. We cannot continue forward.”
“They are luring us somewhere? How can it be possible? Nothing is influencing us, right? We were moving at random!” Mu Chenfeng exclaimed.
However, Gao Xianzhi quickly went to the helm and prepared to turn the flying ship around and return the way they came.
“Humph! You are only thinking of it now? It’s too late to try and leave!” Suddenly, a cold snort rang out of nowhere.
“Prepare for battle!” Long Sanqian shouted as his expression changed. Then, the flying ship gave off dazzling light, and various ritual arrays appeared around the flying ship to defend against any attacks from that voice.
Just at this moment, a surging black fog appeared out of nowhere, encasing the flying ship and confusing everyone’s sense of direction.
“Your Majesty?” Gao Xianzhi called out, waiting for Gu Hai to speak.
Gu Hai’s face sank as he said, “This is a ritual array. Don’t act rashly!”
“Humph! Gu Hai, I have been waiting for you for a long time. I had to put in a lot of effort to lure you here! Today will be the day you die!” A sinister voice came from the black fog.
The voice sounded extremely strange—feminine but altered on purpose, preventing anyone from identifying the speaker. Even so, everyone could make out a bone-deep hatred in the voice.
“Who are you? What grudge do you have with me? How did you know we would come here?” Gu Hai asked.
“Humph! Humph! Humph! What a load of nonsense! Attack!” that voice shouted.
“Yes! The round heavens and the square earth! Order of the Yellow Springs!” A loud shout from another person rang out.
[TL Note: The concept of round heavens and square earth is a philosophical understanding of the world that is not meant to be taken literally. This is represented with the sixty-four hexagrams arranged in two sets—a circle representing heaven and a square representing earth. Here is a picture from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hexagram_(I_Ching)media/File:Diagram_of_I_Ching_hexagrams_owned_by_Gottfried_Wilhelm_Leibniz,_1701.jpg.]
“What? Order of the Yellow Springs? That’s a calligraphy Dao ritual array!” Mu Chenfeng’s expression changed.
“The calligraphy Dao? What is the calligraphy Dao?” Gu Hai looked at Mu Chenfeng.
“Music, Go, calligraphy, or painting. Music is the leader, and calligraphy is the foundation. Hall Master, be careful. The calligraphy Dao represents the laws of the world, the supreme truth of the world. An orderly stroke can split the heavens from the earth,” Mu Chenfeng warned anxiously.
[TL Note: The calligraphy Dao does not only refer to the art of writing but the content as well. Unfortunately, I could not think of an English word to represent everything that it contains. When literally translated, it can be rendered as the book Dao or the study Dao. However, calligraphy is a possible translation as well. In ancient China, calligraphy was closely tied with how cultured one was. If one were a genius but wrote messily, one would not be taken seriously. In this novel, the calligraphy Dao includes the art of writing, poetry, compositions, stories, proverbs, couplets, philosophical scriptures, and basically anything that can be penned.]
Suddenly, a Yellow Springs river appeared from the black fog and rushed towards the flying ship.
[TL Note: Yellow Springs is another name for the underworld in Chinese. It’s similar to the Greek concept of the River Styx.]
“Oh no! Quickly dodge!” Long Sanqian’s expression changed.
However, it was not just one Yellow Springs river but hundreds of them.
The Yellow Springs rivers surrounded the flying ship. The moment they touched the flying ship’s ritual arrays, the ritual arrays strangely disappeared, losing all power.
“Break!” Mu Chenfeng stretched out his hand, holding a wooden staff. Hundreds of tree roots immediately rushed out.
Crackle! Crackle! Crackle!
The moment the roots formed by energy touched the Yellow Springs rivers, they withered and turned to dust.
“This is?” Everyone’s expression changed.
The Yellow Springs rivers surrounded the flying ship, instantly causing all of the ritual array’s energy to disappear. Losing power, the flying ship fell.
“No!” Long Sanqian’s subordinates yelled in horror.
“This is negation, the negation of all energy?” Mu Chenfeng’s expression changed.
Gu Hai swung his crimson saber at a Yellow Springs river.
The manifested saber suddenly vanished, negated as well.
Gu Hai’s expression changed as he took a step to dodge the Yellow Springs rivers’ attack.
The Yellow Springs rivers immediately formed a curtain of water, isolating Gu Hai from everyone else.
However, although everyone could not do anything to the Yellow Springs rivers, they did not suffer much damage.
“The Yellow Springs Absolute Quiescence Scripture? This is the Sima Clan’s Yellow Springs Absolute Quiescence Scripture? How can this be possible? Why would the Sima Clan hunt Gu Hai?” Long Sanqian’s face sank.
“Your Majesty!” Gao Xianzhi and the others immediately charged at the curtain of Yellow Springs rivers.
However, all manifested weapons or enchanted treasures lost their energy upon touching the water curtain.
Gao Xianzhi charged straight at the curtain of Yellow Springs rivers.
Gao Xianzhi entered, but he came back out the next moment.
“Why did I come back out?” Gao Xianzhi’s expression changed.
“It’s useless. This is a calligraphy Dao ritual array. The calligraphy Dao is the Dao of order, a Dao that records the laws of the world. If the laws of the world prevent you from crossing, you cannot do so, no matter what,” Long Sanqian said sullenly.
“What do you mean by laws of the world and the calligraphy Dao? I don’t understand. Is His Majesty in danger?” Gao Xianzhi said anxiously.
Long Sanqian looked at the curtain of Yellow Springs rivers in front of him and showed a strange expression. “Could it be him?”
The curtain of Yellow Springs rivers separated Gu Hai from the others.
Now, a yellow fog replaced the black fog in the surroundings. Shrouded by the yellow fog, Gu Hai felt that he could not bring out any energy. The moment he tried to do so, it instantly got negated. The crimson saber in his hand could not form a manifested saber, just an ordinary saber now.
Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp!
Bats suddenly appeared out of nowhere, rushing at Gu Hai with jaws open wide.
Gu Hai’s expression changed as he swung his crimson saber.
Bang! Bang! Bang! Bang!”
Gu Hai chopped many of the bats in half. However, there were too many bats. They immediately put him in a sorry state.
Gu Hai fled miserably. At the same time, he looked at his surroundings. Indeed, a group of black-robed people currently stood at the summit of a nearby mountain.
The leader of this group seemed to be a woman who held a whip.
A black-robed man was writing in the air, apparently directing the bats to attack Gu Hai.
“Bite him to death! Bite him to death!” the black-clad woman shouted coldly.
The voice of this black-clad woman was that of the person who first cursed Gu Hai.
“Yes!” the man commanding the bats answered.
He held a brush in his hand, using it to write in the air.
Many bats suddenly appeared amid the Yellow Springs fog again. This time, there were a hundredfold more than before. It looked like they intended to rip Gu Hai to shreds.
Gu Hai could not use his energy at all, so his defenses were weakened significantly.
“So, this is where you are?” Gu Hai turned sullen.
Boom! The bats charged over, instantly surrounding Gu Hai and drowning out his figure.
Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp! Chirp!
However, the bats gave off miserable cries.
“What?” the black-robed man exclaimed.
Then, the black-robed man swiped his brush down.
The bats moved away, immediately revealing Gu Hai. Now, bony spikes stuck out of his body. He had instantly pierced all the approaching bats to death with these porcupine-like spikes.
“What kind of evil technique is this?” the group of black-robed men exclaimed.
“Humph!” Gu Hai let out a cold snort. Then, his body trembled as a pair of large bone wings erupted.
While Gu Hai could not bring out any energy, the bones were solid material. When the bone wings flapped, he immediately took to the air.
“Go! Kill him! Kill him!” the black-clad female leader cried out hatefully.
The black-robed man holding the brush wrote the character for “pardon” on the foreheads of three black-robed men.
The three black-robed men suddenly flew up and charged at Gu Hai.
Clearly, this “pardon” character made the calligraphy Dao ritual array ineffective on them.
The frontmost black-robed man immediately approached and swung his sword at Gu Hai.
Gu Hai showed a ferocious expression as he swung the crimson saber as well.
Gu Hai could not bring out a manifested saber, while his opponent produced a ferocious manifested sword. However, the crimson saber was still very tough. It instantly shattered the manifested sword. Nevertheless, the clash knocked Gu Hai back thirty meters.
“Acting all mysterious. Humph!” Gu Hai snarled with a ferocious expression.
Then, Gu Hai’s bone wings flapped as he charged at the three black-robed men.
The three black-robed men immediately swung their swords, sending out manifested qi at Gu Hai.
“Hah!” Gu Hai roared. Unfortunately, he could not produce a manifested saber. When the crimson saber collided with a manifested sword, he got pushed back again. However, the surrounding sword qi continued rushing at him.
Armor appeared on Gu Hai’s body, blocking all the sword qi.
“Humph! Gu Hai, let’s see how long you can defend!” the three black-robed men said coldly.
Clearly, Gu Hai could only flee miserably when he could not bring out any energy. When Gu Hai got knocked back repeatedly, the three felt that he could not last for long.
When Gu Hai got pushed back to the summit of a mountain, he swung his other arm out. Then, a bone saber appeared in that hand—the Life Ender Saber.
The moment the Life Ender Saber appeared, Gu Hai showed a ferocious expression as he was about to charge over.
“Something’s not right. There’s danger. Be careful of that evil saber! Move back! Retreat! If not, you will die!” the earlier black-clad woman shouted in a fluster.
The three black-robed men instantly moved back, seeming to have absolute trust in that woman.
The expression of Gu Hai, who was ready to launch a counterattack, changed. He felt like he had thrown a punch and hit nothing but air.
Something’s wrong. I did not expose any of the Life Ender Saber’s aura. How did that black-clad woman know about the horror of the Life Ender Saber?
Gu Hai flapped his wings and charged at the black-clad men.
“Be careful of that bone saber. That bone saber is very evil. Do your best to avoid it!” the black-clad female cried out.
“Yes!” the black-robed men answered.
The earlier black-robed man holding the brush swiped his hand down. A curtain of Yellow Springs river blocked Gu Hai.
However, Gu Hai swung his Life Ender Saber down.
Strangely, the Life Ender Saber managed to part the curtain of Yellow Springs river.
“What?! That bone saber can break my rules?!” the black-robed man holding the brush exclaimed.
Gu Hai moved rapidly, instantly arriving before the group of black-robed men.
Capture the ringleader first to capture all the followers. Gu Hai charged straight at the black-clad woman.
“How dare you!”
“Protect the princess!”
The black-clad men shouted as they raised their swords to attack Gu Hai simultaneously.
Armor covered Gu Hai, which no weapon could penetrate. Furthermore, he moved swiftly. Soon, it looked like he would arrive before the woman and chop her down.
However, when Gu Hai heard the word “princess,” his expression changed, and he changed the direction of his swing.
The group of black-robed men sent Gu Hai flying back.
However, Gu Hai did not suffer much damage due to the bone armor.
“Princess? Which princess are you?” Gu Hai asked as his expression changed.
The black-clad woman stopped hiding her identity. She raised her hand to pull the hood off her head as she stared coldly at Gu Hai.
The moment the hood rose, it immediately revealed the face of a beautiful woman who somewhat resembled Long Wanqing. However, this woman looked at Gu Hai as though she bore a huge grudge against him.
“Long Wanyu?” Gu Hai exclaimed, his expression changing, as he suddenly remembered the portrait that Venerable Liu Nian had shown him.
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