The shaman of the Wanshi tribe stood by the fire pit with a taunting look on his face. He listened carefully to the sound of battle nearby, unmoving.
There was not a single Wanshi tribesman by his side. The nearest warrior was fifty meters away.
With the Wanshi fire pit at the center, there was a circular patch of empty ground. The Wanshi shaman was the only one present within the fifty-meter radius.
A fiery glow with a tinge of grey danced within the fire pit. It was Wanshi's colour.
The shaman was once worried when their flames had died down into only a small fireball. However, soon after Flaming Horn’s fire seed disappeared, their fire seed seemed to be rejuvenated after losing one more opponent. It returned to its original vibrancy before the arrival of the Flaming Horns.
This reassured the shaman. Though he did not know why Flaming Horn’s fire seed disappeared or how their warriors retained their initial strength, he knew that without the suppression of the Flaming Horn’s fire seed, their own fire seed could unleash its true powers!
Why should they fear the Flaming Horns? Flaming Horn did not have a fire seed but Wanshi did!
Wanshi was not afraid of a small tribe who might not even survive1
The fire seed’s power was ultimate, the shaman could not imagine anyone destroying it. Even the slave masters couldn’t! Yet these people thought they could?
The Flaming Horns were dumb!
It had been one thousand years since their fall from glory, they must’ve become simple-minded.
If the Flaming Horn’s fire seed was still present, he would be cautious. Yet the stupid Flaming Horns lost their own fire seed! Hahaha!
The shaman wanted to laugh out loud.
Wars between large tribes depended on the fire seeds, how could you not understand this? You don’t have a fire seed, what makes you think you can fight me?
As he thought about it, the look of contempt on his face grew. He raised an arm as he listened to the sounds of battle. Tall flames shot up and out of the fire pit. It flickered, though there was no wind, crackling. He did not hear the usual howling winds, instead the sounds of stones colliding into each other.
When Shao Xuan finally arrived, he noticed something eerie.
The defenses around the fire pit were very different from the tight security he imagined. There were less than three hundred warriors in this area. Wanshi claimed to have more than ten thousand warriors but in reality, they didn’t have that many people. Even if they added the ones who did not fight, at most, they should have about eight thousand members. However, the numbers were true if they included the slave masters and their slaves. Plus the war prisoners they caught were probably in the hundreds.
With a population of more than ten thousand, this was considered a major tribe. If they hadn’t lost so many lives to invading smaller tribes, they would have more.
This time, five thousand Flaming Horns came to invade Wanshi. On Wanshi’s side, adding up both the slaves and Wanshi’s warriors, their army was larger than Flaming Horn. However, at this point, if one looked closer, the number of deaths and injuries on Flaming Horn’s side was significantly smaller.
Shao Xuan could clearly feel the fire seed as he killed his way here. That was why he was shocked to see only three hundred people guarding the fire pit.
And these people weren’t near the fire pit at all, there was a large piece of empty land in the center.
There were a hundred Flaming Horn warriors with Shao Xuan here. There were one hundred more arriving soon. It was going to be easy fighting these three hundred people, they were all at most minor leaders, the chief or hunt leaders weren’t here.
Shao Xuan had an eerie feeling.
The rest could feel the strong repulsion and peculiar feeling emitted from the Wanshi fire seed.
Shao Xuan did not immediately charge towards the fire pit. The Flaming Horns only battled against the three hundred people in the peripheral regions. He stopped any warrior charging at the fire pit too.
These three hundred Wanshi warriors didn’t seem like they planned to fight much either. Occasionally, they would retreat towards the fire pit. While one could explain that they wanted to use the fire pit’s powers, Shao Xuan thought it looked more like they were luring the Flaming Horns over.
Would anyone lure outsiders towards their own fire pit?!
There must be something wrong with the empty piece of land.
Shao Xuan did not have to say a word, for the rest also guessed it. They only fought outside the fifty-meter radius but did not go forward.
The Wanshi shaman grew impatient when he saw the Flaming Horn numbers increase but none approached the fire pit.
With a creepy smile, he lifted his arms and unleashed a long roar at the skies. He chanted in a language Shao Xuan did not understand. It could sound like some meaningless tune but at this point, Shao Xuan felt a large threat.
“Retreat!” shouted Shao Xuan.
Tuo and the rest heard him. There was a momentary pause, then everyone backed away from the fire pit.
“More! Further!” Shao Xuan continued yelling.
The Flaming Horns were retreating from the fire pit, though more and more of their own arrived. Wanshi tribesmen arrived. There was now a very peculiar phenomenon- the Flaming Horns wanted to stay away but the Wanshi people kept blocking them from retreat.
Thud! Thud! Thud!
Hurried, consecutive thuds exploded from the fire pit.
The roaring greyish flames filled the entire pit, then a column of fiery light shot up into the sky. Like a volcanic eruption, fireballs spewed out of the pit.
Fireballs seemed to roll and hang in the air, as if they were about to cover the patch of sky above. With the sound of a tsunami, the blanket of fireballs fell from the skies like the apocalypse.
The Flaming Horns witnessing such a scene broke out in cold sweat. They were the first batch of Flaming Horns who arrived here, they were nearest to the pit too. To the warriors of the old haunt, this was their first time attacking another tribe. To the warriors from the other side of the ocean, this was their first time attacking a tribe with primitive fire seed. Neither side had seen such a thing before.
The fire seed was too powerful. It felt like they were standing in the face of a king beast- no, this was worse!
Staying here would only mean death. Even the chiefs, Ao and Zheng Luo would tell them to run above everything else.
The Wanshi shaman by the pit sneered, his chants now longer and higher-pitched.
How could it just be fifty meters?
That was just an act! Just from how its power exploded, the fire seed’s range was definitely not just fifty meters long!
Boom! Boom! Boom!
The ground exploded as fireballs hit the ground, like the roars of an angry beast as it echoed across the lands.
They were supposed to be just fireballs, yet when the flames landed, as if heavy boulders had hit the ground, the earth shook.
The fireballs started landing further and further from the fire pit. Fireballs that hit the ground turned to grey flames. They could see the shaman’s faint silhouette through these grey fireballs.
The ground around the fire pit was already filled with grey flames. The second ring was quickly forming. These flames seemed to be growing upwards to form a tall mountain!
The fireballs were landing quickly. With the Wanshi people blocking them, the first batch of Flaming Horn warriors could not run out of range in time.
These warriors felt an invisible force pressing on them, a freezing current pressing up on them so every hair stood on their bodies. They did not look up to check the skies but they could feel the force of a mountain on them, as if even the ground would collapse on itself.
The effects of another tribe’s fire seed limited their mobility, even running was much more difficult. Their breaths ragged, faces pale… but they could still feel the growing weight on their bodies. Even moving their feet was too difficult now.
The shadow of death loomed over the warriors’ heads. Behind them, countless grey fireballs getting closer and closer to them. Every fireball fell with the power of rolling thunder, as if slamming into the ground with the force of a mountain.Death hung around as the grey fire spread at alarming speeds.
The sky was covered in a layer of grey fire, blocking out the morning sun. A sense of danger lingered.
The flowing air currents brought bone-piercing cold.
This was the last defense of the Wanshi tribe! Also the strongest!
So that was why the hunt leader trusted the fire seed’s power so much.
To the tribesmen, the fire seed was the most sacred, most powerful object. The fire seed held the power of the skies and the earth!
The Wanshi people believed that no one could break their defenses unless there was a more powerful fire seed. However, with the concept of ‘the fire seed growing roots in their fire pit’ as the source of power, which tribe would dare bring their fire seed out of their tribe?
They dared build their village outside the Fearsome Beast Forest only because they believed that all beasts would avoid their tribe because of their fire seed!
While the Wanshi fire seed might not be as powerful as the ancient, major tribes, here, they were kings! They were the gods of this world!
The slave masters chose to lean on the Wanshi tribe not out of convenience, they had their reasons.
The slave masters made this decision because they saw potential for Wanshi to grow into a powerful major tribe!