The Flaming Horn army was divided into three teams, stealthily heading towards the salt mines. Every team was led by experienced salt mine guards who were familiar with hidden paths. This was so that the people at the mines would not be able to see them.
Although the Flaming Horn guards were forced out, the traps they set here had not been taken out. There was evidence of these traps being set off by other people. Their advantage was that they were familiar with the rocky terrain, they could walk here with their eyes closed since it was their part of the mines.
Now, the three teams were all close to the mines. Their success was due to their experience and that the people stationed at the mines were focused on people destroying the cave. Third, the birds usually keeping watch in the skies were all unsettled enough to hide in their caves. Of course, the most important reason-- Fox and Shen Forest tribes had not expected the Flaming Horn tribe to arrive so soon.
Zheng Luo’s suppressed anger exploded in a second, he launched the attack first. His pupils dilated with his emotion and totemic power surged within his entire being in a second. His muscles rippled as totemic patterns flowed like lava. His furious scowl was menacing.
He sprung forward with one giant leap, his body charging ahead like a lit cannon. Grains of salt on the ground flew in his trail. His eyes wanted death, slashing a tightly gripped wide bronze knife. Such power had only been seen in a forest beast, baring its teeth!
With a cold glint from the tip of the blade, a whistle could be heard as his knife cut through the air. It sounded like how the wind cut through the rough sand formations before a storm.
The person nearest to Zheng Luo was a guard from Fox tribe. Since the cave was collapsing at the mouth, he switched from his post to stand on a boulder outside the mouth. When he heard Zheng Luo, he turned and made a gesture to shield himself but it was too late.
The blade sliced into his waist. There was the faint smell of salt.
In the next moment, the blade had exited his back. Such a powerful slash did not meet any resistant. The blade was now stained with blood. Violence was in the air.
The person who was cut in half collapsed, his eyes still filled with terror and disbelief.
After his first kill, Zheng Luo did not retract his knife. Surfing on his momentum, he slashed horizontally to slash up another person’s torso. The knife did not meet any resistance either, chopping the other guard in half. You could tell how powerful his movements were.
Blood made the salt pieces on the ground brighter.
The smell of blood wafted through the air, bringing with it a chilling killing aura.
The sudden escalation of events caused the other tribesmen supervising the workers, and the workers destroying the cave to freeze in shock. The lazy supervisors were filled with shock.
Didn’t they say the Flaming Horn and the other two were only arriving tomorrow?!
Who fucking said so?!
When they looked up, they were met with a pair of deathly eyes, identical to a ravenous forest predator.
The people in salt mines, out of terror, screamed. “Flaming Horn! It’s the Flaming Horn tribe!!”
Men who were sitting, standing, everyone from the Fox and Shen Forest tribe quickly picked up their weapons to fight.
Duo Kang, who was rushing towards the salt mines from another direction had an axe in his hand. The axe was filled with its owner’s fury, as if it was crackling with electricity. As they met the closest Shen tribesman, the opponent blocked with his sword, Duo Kang’s wrist jerked, the trajectory of the axe changed its angle and its sharp blade crashed into his opponent’s arm. If the guy had not moved, his torso would have been hacked in half.
Duo Kang deflected the sword away and cut the now one-armed man again. He roared at the top of his voice, “I don’t care which tribe you’re from! You stole our salt mines! Kill! How dare you destroy our caves! Kill! Kill! Kill!” He was furious when he saw their collapsed mines.
The Flaming Horn tribesmen unleashed a peculiar war cry. All the warriors who were hiding quietly no longer had to suppress their anger. They raised their weapons and charged like maniacs!
You dare steal our mines?!
You dare destroy our caves?!
What? You’re not from the Fox or Shen, you were just recruited to help out?
Do you take me for an idiot? What’s that red and white block in your hand? Meat? That’s fucking salt! You’d probably taken it from OUR mines!
What are you doing here? Mining ore? Oh, but you’re destroying the cave at the same time? Even idiots won’t do that, you think I’ll believe you?
Battles over territory and resources operated by one rule: if you don’t die, I’ll die.
White and red salt grains scattered all over the ground were now splattered in blood.
The battle escalated to peak violence in the blink of an eye.
The people breaking the other two caves also heard the battle but hesitated to help. If they went over, what would they do if the Taihe and Mountain Wind tribes arrived? Whatever, there were many people in the Fox and Shen caves, they’ll help.
The Shen tribe’s chief was surprised. Shouldn’t Flaming Horn be travelling together with Taihe?
They rarely sent birds to watch the Flaming Horn tribe unless the birds could fly very high up. These freakishly powerful Flaming Horn people would just shoot their birds down. However, the Taihe people were easy to watch so watching them meant also understanding the Flaming Horn’s movement.
But what the hell was this?
They didn’t see Mountain Wind, Taihe was still hurrying across the salt flats. Why was Flaming Horn here to soon?
The Shen chief couldn’t help but regret not sending birds to watch them. Or they wouldn’t be so helpless now.
HE was about to send reinforcements when he froze because he saw that the Fox tribe was not taking action.
Something was up!
He looked at the birds cowering in the corner, then looked up at the sky.
The sky has changed!
Based on his predictions, he thought it would happen in three days. Yesterday was one day, so the weather should change in two days. However, the Fox lady had said it would happen in two. In the morning, nothing happened so he expected it would change tomorrow. He had arranged for many activities today. Looks like all his plans were ruined.
The Shen tribe could predict the weather based on the surrounding plants. Yesterday, a batch of Shen warriors arrived to report that the plants in the jungle were displaying odd changes. They feared a major disaster was arriving. Or perhaps something they had never seen before. He looked at the birds trying their best to merge into the walls and understood. They did not even want to leave. How much more powerful were humans against the force of nature?
Since the weather had changed, then there was no need to send his men over. The people in the Flaming Horn definitely won’t stop the attack. For the sake of the fire crystals, they could only clench their teeth and give up on their own men.
While there were surprises, their main plan was still in action. The Shen Chief brought his people to the Fox tribe’s cave and ventured deeper inside. It was warmer inside too.
Outside the cave, snow descended.
No one had noticed the temperature falling. It got colder very quickly, it did not give anyone a chance to adapt.
Very soon, more snow fell from the skies.
The wind started to blow, whistling as air currents looped mid-air, picking up fallen snowflakes and then tossed them unto the ground again. Shao Xuan could even hear the soft thud of snow thrown at the boulders by the wind.
Warm blood splattered around froze at great speed, shattering into crumbs as they hit the ground.
The wind grew stronger as larger pieces of snow floated in the air like thick chiffon curtains. The air currents billowed and twisted hysterically, shielding everything from sight.
Shao Xuan focused his weight on his ankle, then leapt aside like lightning as he dodged a knife. The knife in his hand was so quick there were after-images mid-air, slashing towards the other guy’s neck like an open fan.
Without stopping, Shao Xuan hopped backwards and the knife in front slashed where he stood.
After killing another person, he quickly looked at the sky in disbelief.
Something is wrong! Something is very wrong!
There was an eerie, bone-chilling feeling but not because of the falling temperatures. Something else.
While the cold weather was worrying, it was not enough to cause this feeling. Something else was happening.
The snow fell heavier, everyone could barely open their eyes. The gap between heaven and earth seemed to be filled with white dots. On the ground, salt and snow looked the same. It was still getting colder.
On the vast salt flats, the shallow puddles of water were quickly freezing. However, as if it was spring, the salt flowers grew manically and expended. If Shao Xuan was here, he would have seen how they ‘blossomed’,
Within the Flaming Horn cave, some of the workers from other tribes had already given up. IN the past, for the salt, they would have still fought for their lives. However, with such unprecedented weather changes, they panicked. Distracted, their fighting became flawed and in the end, many were killed.
The Shen and Fox people here did not see reinforcements coming to help them and were panicking too. They could barely keep themselves alive with the sheer number of Flaming Horn tribesmen.
“End this battle as fast as you can! Hurry!” yelled Shao Xuan.
Since just now, he felt a numbing sensation in his scalp. There was a terrible feeling in his gut.