Chapter 157 – The Vicious Tiger Emerges from the Cage
Many boats of various sizes were docked at the wharf.
The drizzle continued to pour down, creating countless ripples on the lake’s surface. A thin layer of fog formed above the lake. The firelight in the glazed covers on the boats created a hazy yellow. Everything seemed peaceful.
Many men were left behind to watch over the boats to prevent anyone from severing their path of retreat. Inside their cabins, they all discussed the great laughter from the island earlier.
With a thunk, a double-masted boat seemed to hit something. It shook violently before rapidly sinking.
The men left behind on the boats all heard that. They emerged on their decks and saw the boat of the Blue Wolf gang sink. Apart from the people of the Blue Wolf gang who fell into panic, the others all stood on their decks and laughed aloud, watching on leisurely.
However, there was another great thunk very soon, and another boat began to sink slowly. A third soon followed.
Everyone all sensed that something was wrong. They called out, “What’s going on?” “Oh no, there’s a water ghost sinking the ships!” “If you can swim, go down and take a look!”
By water ghost , they were obviously not talking about an actual ghost, but someone lurking under the water.
Immediately, over a dozen able-bodied figures leapt into the water. After their eyes grew accustomed to the darkness in the water, they became stunned. All they saw was two large balls of fire, red in the centre and white on the edges, in the pitch-black, icy depths. None of them had ever seen such brilliant, lively fire before.
The fire rapidly expanded as they grew closer. They finally could see the source of the two balls of fire now. They could not help but become dumbfounded.
It was a huge skull that stood even taller than a man, like the skull of a giant. However, it seemed like it had been revived from the abyss of hell right now. Its eye sockets were brimming with lively fire as it looked at them brilliantly.
Afterwards, it opened its mouth and lunged towards them. The same kind of fire burned within its mouth like gates to the furnace of hell.
Xiao An stood in the pitch-black depths with his hands together in a prayer position. He controlled the Skull Prayer Beads and swallowed these people one by one before smashing it towards the other ships. The huge skull would immediately leave behind a great hole after a single collision.
With each thunk, a boat sank.
On the wharf, no one could hide their fear anymore. The boats were all destroyed, and the people who had entered the water had not emerged either. They had no idea what was hiding in the water. They were trapped here now.
Thump! Thump! Thump! Thump! There was a string of gentle sounds, and the people on the shore collapsed on the ground like puppets cut from their strings.
Everyone cried out, “There’s an enemy attack!” “Where?” “Get out here! Get out here for me!”
No one could see the white streak that rushed through the rainy night. The Skull Prayer Beads had already reverted to their original, bead-like form, moving rapidly through the rain; it was like a sixth layer Qi Practitioner controlling an artifact. It was not something these people of the jianghu could discover.
Even more people collapsed on the ground. The cowardly swung their weapons wildly. They looked around, but all they saw was the dark of night. The calmer people tried to find out the reason for the deaths of the others. Very soon, they discovered a thumb-sized hole that connected their chest and back, but there was not a shred of blood from the wounds at all.
Just as they contemplated this, someone shouted out, “It seems to be… fire!”
The other people also discovered that the holes seemed to possess a speck of firelight. The wounds rapidly grew, and the holes grew as well. However, not a single droplet of blood was shed the entire time. The fire devoured the flesh and blood of the deceased quietly.
Every single person who had the right to receive an invitation to this Island of Cherishing Flowers were people who had lived with their lives on the line every single day; they were people who would even lick the blood off their blades. However, they all became frightened out of their wits when they saw the people beside them drop dead one by one, unable to see the enemy and only left with this strange sight. They all staggered backwards.
The flames swallowed all of the flesh and blood, reducing it to white bones in the blink of an eye. The colour of the flames became brighter as well, brimming with life. Afterwards, as if they were not done, they swelled and erupted, turning into thousands of sparks and landing on the other people.
The fire passed through their clothes without leaving behind a trace. However, once it came into contact with fresh blood and flesh, it was like fire to oil. It would rapidly spread and evolve into a roaring flame.
A series of miserable shrieks rang out at the wharf, with several dozen people on fire. In the blink of an eye, not a single sound was left. All that remained were several dozen sets of white bones.
Xiao An emerged from the water and counted to himself. Six hundred and ninety-seven.
The remaining sets of skeletons were now clad in a layer of pale flames. The white bones melted like snow very soon, turning into several droplets of fluid before merging with his body.
Just when Xiao An wanted to make his way to the garden and assist Li Qingshan, he suddenly sensed something and turned around.
His flaming eye sockets pierced through the fog. From extremely far away, he saw a great, black ship slowly sail over.
Xiao An thought about what to do. He still ended up deciding to go to the garden.
Li Qingshan sucked in and produced an explosive shout. Pure true qi mixed with daemon qi turned into a Tiger Demon’s Fierce Roar with a great gust of wind, directly landing on the few incoming martial arts practitioners. They were immediately blown away as they spat out blood. Their faces and chests were reduced to a bloody mess. It was impossible for them to survive.
Although this was a Tiger Demon’s Fierce Roar that had been weakened countless times, it was still not something mere masters of the jianghu could endure.
Right off the bat, Li Qingshan’s roar killed several first-rate masters.
These so-called first-rate masters who were accustomed to always getting their way with their powerful martial arts had witnessed the true disparity in strength between them and the Hawkwolf Guard.
With the creaking of metal, Li Qingshan forced open a great hole between the bars. The inscriptions on the Daemon-trapping Cage of Bi’an dimmed, and the spiritual qi dispersed.
Li QIngshan walked out like a vicious tiger emerging from a cage. He gave off a pressing aura. The martial arts masters all took a step back as they looked at Li Qingshan in surprise and fright.
Li Qingshan’s stature returned to normal. He would never expose his daemon form before so many people unless he was certain he could clean them all up. The person he needed to eliminate immediately was obviously Shen Xihua, who could sense his daemon qi.
“Oh no, the boats! The boats have been destroyed!” A lackey suddenly rushed in and shouted out.
“What? Who did that?” Tian Zhonghao grabbed the lackey by the shoulders and exclaimed.
“I- I don’t know!”
All of them looked at Li Qingshan. Although they had heard it from Shen Xihua, they had only just realised that this teenager of the Hawkwolf Guard actually wanted to trap them all here so that he could slaughter them all.
Li Qingshan smiled. Xiao An had begun as well. Afterwards, his eyes narrowed, and he gazed through the crowd at Shen Xihua, who hid among them and was about to flee. He yelled, “Where do you think you’re going?!”
Shen Xihua shuddered inside. He turned around in shock. Li Qingshan had already drawn near as his voice resounded. With the roaring wind, he lunged over.
Some of the martial arts masters were unable to react in time, so they ended up blocking Li Qingshan’s path. They felt like a rampaging elephant had struck them, and they were directly knocked several meters away. Their bones all shattered as they passed away, unable to let out a single sound.
There was a flash of a talisman, and it burned away to ash.
A golden figure rose up from Shen Xihua’s body. He was quite fast with his reaction. At that critical moment, he used a Strength Talisman of the Guardian Kings before forcefully turning around and throwing two punches downwards at Li Qingshan’s stomach.
Li Qingshan ignored the attacks. He formed a tiger’s claw with his right hand and viciously reached towards Shen Xihua. “Go die!”
The Tiger Demon Digs out the Heart.
His five fingers were like five steel chisels. They forcefully stabbed through the golden light. True qi and light clashed violently, producing an ear-splitting screech.
Shen Xihua was utterly shocked. He had never thought that the Strength Talisman of the Guardian Kings could be ripped through with empty hands. However, he knew that his time was up, so all of his true qi gathered in his fists violently as he punched at Li Qingshan’s chest.
Li Qingshan forcefully endured the two punches, but he only tottered slightly. His right hand pierced through the golden light and stabbed into Shen Xihua’s chest. He tugged outwards and dug out a bloody heart.
The surroundings suddenly fell quiet. The strongest person present, Shen Xihua, could not even survive a single attack from Li Qingshan. Once again, this was a heavy mental blow to the many martial arts masters present.
They could no longer care about anything now. They all took out their trump card talismans, biting the tips of their tongues and spraying blood on them. The talismans activated and shattered, releasing light. However, all of them chose to flee outside. They did not even care about their subordinates. Not a single one of them tried to throw their lives at Li Qingshan.
When the vicious tiger descends from the mountains, the birds and beasts scatter.
“Talismans? I have them too!” Li Qingshan casually fished out a Swift Breeze talisman from his hundred treasures pouch and activated it with true qi. Whirlwind wrapped around his arms, and his body seemed to become much lighter. He took a step, and he felt like it was cushioned with air, allowing him to take off into the sky.
In the air, he drew his knicked Wind-entwining blade with a reverse grip and swept out with it.
The swiftest masters who had reacted first had already made it past the walls. They were cut in half by a wind blade. Their blood and organs scattered on the ground.
After using the Swift Breeze talisman, his swift body became ghostly. There were a series of blurs and splashes of blood erupted. Describing him as a tiger among a flock of sheep was no longer enough now.
This was no longer a battle, but a one-sided massacre. Before an absolute difference in strength, tricks and techniques were already pointless. All he needed to do was swing the Wind-entwining blade gently and heads would hit the ground. He could kill with each step, all the way from the study room to the courtyard, and then to the main hall. He was like a living asura.
The martial arts masters fled in all directions like a swarm of bees. They could only resent how their parents had only given birth to them with two feet. They had cursed Shen Xihua thousands of times inside by now.
One of them looked back and saw Li Qingshan flicker, rapidly approaching him, so he knelt down on the ground and yelled out, “I’m a spy from the government!” Afterwards, he blinked, and Li Qingshan stopped in front of him with his completely nicked blade paused. With another blink of his eyes, Li Qingshan had already arrived elsewhere. The person felt feeble as he collapsed on the ground. He basically crawled and rolled his way to a corner of the massacre.
With that as an example, many people copied him. They knelt on the ground and shouted out, “I’m also a spy too!”
For a moment, there were spies as far as the eye could see. Li Qingshan did not have any accurate information on these lackeys either, so he became rather hesitant.
On the distant lake surface, several dozen balls of firelight lit up in the tin fog; it was followed by shrill whistles in the air that rapidly drew closer.
Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom! Under the deafening sounds, the Island of Cherishing Flower was immediately reduced to a sea of fire.
A black cannonball pierced through the ceiling and landed five steps in front of Li Qingshan. It erupted with dazzling light and waves of heat, directly blowing away the people nearby like they were paper.