Chapter 691: Arrival
Translator: flycrane01 Editor: Millman97
Cai Qi’s words froze every Cultivator’s heart like a cold tornado.
The Cultivators who were quick-minded and had amazing computational ability had realized that, if the Immortal Cultivators revealed the entire Mist Plan to ‘Apollo’ when they knew his real identity, something must have been seriously wrong with the Mist Plan.
However, it was unmistakable that seven Core Formation Stage Cultivators had been captured through the Mist Clearing Operation and that a large batch of Heart Gnawing Mist and crystal bombs had been found.
Everybody looked at one another in bewilderment. The area was caught in a weird silence.
In the command center of the Mist Clearing Operation, countless Cultivators were reviewing and analyzing every battle that had taken place.
In the meantime, many research-type Cultivators were seizing every second to crack the Heart Gnawing Mist, the vital poison to the Mist Plan.
A while later, shocking results came one after another.
“Of the seven members of the Eight Blades of Black Spider we slew or captured, at least four are fakes!
“By analyzing the combat videos captured by the crystal cameras dynamically, we discovered that four of the assassins never showed any ability beyond the peak of the Building Foundation Stage before their deaths as they struggled to resist.
“How could a Core Formation Stage Cultivator not burst out their best ability at a moment of life and death?
“The identities of the other three assassins are rather suspicious, too. Although two assassins showed techniques that seemed to belong to the Core Formation Stage, their veins exploded, and they all died sudden deaths after the fierce battle. It is possible that they took a lot of drugs to stimulate their veins and increase their strength.
“This means that the ‘Eight Blades of Black Spider’ we discovered were probably assassins of a lower level in disguise. They were ‘stand-ins’ for the real ‘Eight Blades of Black Spider!
“It is also possible that one to two real assassins of the ‘Eight Blades of Black Spider’ were leading six to seven ‘stand-ins’. The assassin who succeeded in getting away might be the real one!”
The news exploded like a crystal bomb in the crowd.
Before everybody recovered from the dizziness, a piece of even more shocking news crashed at them like an unstoppable tide!
“According to the preliminary analysis of the research-type Cultivators, the Heart Gnawing Mist is fake, too!
“It is not precise to call the poison false. In fact, the ‘Heart Gnawing Mist’ is a simple combination of nine venomous gases. It has no technological requirements whatsoever and is rather unattractive in terms of toxicity, volatility, and infectivity. With the current techniques in the world of Cultivators, it can easily be sealed, cracked, and purged. Such a poison cannot be called a piece of ‘vital’ magical equipment at all!”
Cai Qi was both confused and frustrated. He mumbled to himself, “Maybe, the Heart Gnawing Mist never existed in the first place. It was merely a made-up super poison to misguide our investigation and to distract our attention.
“Stay alert, everybody! Activate your spiritual energy to the maximum and turn on all your safety magical equipment!”
Cai Qi suddenly raised his voice. Thunder seemed to be breaking out in the communication channel as he shouted. “The Temple of Immortals forced us to mobilize all our strength with the nonexistent ‘Mist Plan’, but this can’t be their ultimate goal. They must have prepared something more unpredictable and dangerous for us!
“All the Cultivators nearby, move close to me immediately. Make sure you have two companions at all times. Don’t be alone. I repeat. Whatever strange things you find, don’t investigate them alone and simply report back to me!”
The air seemed to be pumped away in that moment, and the atmosphere was more intense than ever. Every Cultivator had a grave countenance, as if an invisible demon was crouching in the dark depths of space, eyeing them in amusement despite the thick metal city walls.
“Senior Cai, maybe the Temple of Immortals does have other plans, but I want to make sure of something with your first.”
Li Yao asked very calmly, “Is Senior Xiao Xuance the leader of the Immortal Slayers and the supervisor of the Mist Clearing Operation?”
Cai Qi was dazed for a moment. He frowned and said, “How is it possible? Xiao Xuance is the CEO of the Grand Illusionary Group. He is responsible for the expansion and maintenance of the Spiritual Nexus. He also has to participate in the ‘Grand Illusionary Soldier Project’. He is occupied in all kinds of affairs from dawn to dusk every day. There’s no time for him to handle the things regarding the Immortal Slayers at all.
“The Grand Illusionary Group and the Immortal Slayers are two independent systems. The former does not govern or manage the latter.
“As for the Mist Clearing Operation, he is not in charge of it, either. However, we knew that Xiao Tianbao, his foster son, was an expert in crystal processors and, thus, invited him to supervise the monitoring work.”
Li Yao blinked and pondered for a moment. Then he asked again, “Then, if my guess is correct, some of the Immortal Slayers, especially those who infiltrated the Temple of Immortals, must be Xiao Xuance’s true disciples or his family members, aren’t they?”
Cai Qi looked at him strangely and said, “Isn’t it only reasonable?”
Ye Hongfei pulled Li Yao’s sleeve and said in a low voice, “What are you trying to ask, Master Sand? Xiao Xuance is from the Feathered Snakes Brotherhood and was its leader for decades. Naturally, many of his disciples and family members are Immortal Slayers!”
Li Yao was confused. “What do you mean?”
“Did you not know?” Ye Hongfei found it odd. “The six sects of Heavenly Saints City and the six tribes of Iron Plateau should be similar. Our ancestors are all the remaining troops after the civil war of the Star Ocean Imperium ten thousand years ago.
“The soldiers belonged to different systems, and they slowed evolved into different sects according to their own features.
“For example, the Furious Bears Union originated from the ‘Furious Bears Assault Team’, a paratroop regiment of the Star Ocean Imperium that was particularly good at assault missions.
“As for the Burning Sun Alliance, it was based on the scout troops of the Star Ocean Imperium. Therefore, they possess a lot of speed-type secret arts and are best at guerilla warfare and reconnaissance.
“The Feathered Snakes Brotherhood can be traced back to the intelligence department of the Star Ocean Imperium. Information collection, infiltration, interrogation, anti-interrogation… Those are all their specialties!
“Therefore, when the team of Immortal Slayers was established, it was only natural that most of the participants were disciples of the Feathered Snakes Brotherhood.
“Xiao Xuance was the leader of the Feathered Snakes Brotherhood for decades. He has more disciples and grand-disciples in the sect than anybody can count. What’s odd about there being several of his true disciples among the Immortal Slayers?”
Li Yao was dumbfounded and rendered speechless.
He finally understood why such a marvelous tool as the ‘Truth Cabinet’ was in the hands of the Feathered Snakes Tribe when he was back on Iron Plateau.
As it turned out, their ancestors were actually responsible for the intelligence work. The decision was perfectly understandable!
Li Yao was not fully convinced and was about to open his mouth again, but Cai Qi interrupted him coldly. “Fellow Cultivator Sand, I may have guessed what you’re thinking. You want to know whether or not Xiao Xuance has true disciples and family members among the Immortal Slayers. I can tell you that he does have, and that they are in quite high positions.
“Xiao Xuance’s blood son Xiao Tianyang is a key member of the Immortal Slayers and of paramount importance for the infiltration plan!”
Li Yao had guessed it a long time ago. He frowned and said, “Where is Xiao Tianyang right now?”
Cai Qi gnashed his teeth, his every word dashing out like a flying sword. “Xiao Tianyang is now in Xiao Xuance’s arms!
“He is Apollo, who was just killed by the Temple of Immortals as a message to us!”
“What!” As if hit by a lightning, Li Yao took a few steps back and crashed into the ventilation tube heavily.
The collision was so huge that it was echoing inside the ventilation tube. The color on Li Yao’s face was entirely gone.
Beep! Beep! Beep!
Hasty alarms broke out on every Cultivator’s crystal processor.
The hundred light beams triggered by Cai Qi were blinking ominously red at the same time. Devastating screams each louder than the last were coming through the communication channel.
“The tenth space ring! A great explosion took place in the tenth space ring!”
“Abnormal spiritual waves are everywhere around the tenth space ring, as if it has been savaged by an unexpected cosmic storm!”
“No. Not a storm…”
“It’s—it’s—it’s extraterrestrial devils!”
“The extraterrestrial devils have arrived in the tenth space ring!”
All the Cultivators, including Cai Qi, lost their color. Their faces were paler than a corpse’s right now.
They were not as terrified when they learned that ‘Hellsword’ got away, when they discovered that ‘Apollo’ was dead, or when they realized that the Mist Plan was merely a smoke grenade tossed out intentionally by the Temple of Immortals.
They had never expected that they would be faced with one of the most horrifying catastrophes for every sector: the extraterrestrial devils!
Through researching the manipulation and utilization of spiritual energy, human beings had realized the existence of a type of energy that was entirely different from commonly-seen spiritual energy a long time ago. It was known as ‘tenebrum energy’.
However, debates remained unabated as to the essence of the tenebrum energy even to this day.
However, there was one well-accepted theory.
Mankind was not the first dominator of the endless sea of stars. Before the civilization of human beings was established, countless prosperous civilizations and kings emerged in the boundless cosmos.
The strong prehistoric species addressed by the ancient people as ‘deities’ or ‘devils’ failed to resist the deterioration of time and gradually went extinct over billions of years.
However, although the prehistoric civilizations were doomed, the thoughts, or the will, of the experts of the civilizations sometimes lingered on like ghosts.
Such thoughts that contained infinite anger, horror, desperation, regret, and brutality would wander here and there in the space.
Most of the thoughts would gradually diminish as time went by until they completely vanished in the end.
However, some of the thoughts would combine with spiritual energy by accident, or rather, corrupt the spiritual energy, by turning the pure, steady, and mild spiritual energy into a vastly different form that could be extremely violent.
That was tenebrum energy.
Moreover, when endless tenebrum energy was concentrated, the apparitions from the past civilizations could develop self-awareness again.
Such apparitions often gathered in somewhere mysterious in the endless sea of stars.
Nobody knew their purpose. But when they came, the only thing they brought was always betrayal, slaughter, and destruction.
They were the extraterrestrial devils!