The changes in the boundless river had made the people of the Drumming tribe worried.
The changes in the big river lasted for several days, but it took longer for them to see the bigger changes. To them, it was as if a huge boulder was thrown at them, but they could not see any stones fall on the ground. The shaman and leader of the Drumming tribe could not sleep for several nights thinking about this.
After the abnormal situation happened at the big river, the crocodiles collectively moved their nests away from the bank. Now their range of activity was far from the bank. Even if they had to crawl a longer distance every day, they were willing to do so. This made the people of the Drumming tribe even more puzzled and worried than before. What happened to the crocodiles?
Until one seemingly peaceful day, the ground suddenly shook, and the crocodiles swimming in the water scrambled up to the shore in panic and continued to dash away from the riverbank toward their newly dug hole.
The people who stood on the crocodiles’ backs fell off. No matter how many times they called them, they did not look and continued to crawl toward their new holes.
After the earth shook, there was an uncomfortable silence.
It was not until the warriors of the tribe were checking around that they found many dead fish in the river. A few days ago, the fish were still fiercely biting each other and jumping restlessly in the river. Now all of their bellies were overturned and they floated without movement atop the surface of the river.
“What is this... what's going on?”
The patrolling soldiers hurried back to report the matter to the shaman and the leader.
In the following days, every ten days or so, there would be a sudden movement in the ground, and the interval between each quake grew shorter each time. The earthquakes were also becoming more intense with each following one.
The tribesmen followed the orders of the shaman and their leader. They followed the crocodiles and moved their houses away from the riverbank.
At the time, most parts of the mainland had been depleted of water.
The good thing was that the weather hadn't changed much. It was still the same as the weather in previous years. Every time it rained, the people of the tribe, as well as the wanderers who depend on the tribes for survival, would all rush to move their clay pots out under the rain to collect water.
Tribes that were good at pottery made a lot of money under these weird circumstances. Before, large pots were hard to sell but now they were the best-selling item on the market.
Making pottery was simple, but making good pots was not an easy task. The pots made by most people were not of good quality. They were fragile and broke easily. Sometimes water could even seep out from the sides. They were not durable and efficient, so most people chose to buy pots at the trading markets.
The same was true for the Flaming Horn tribe. People would be willing to trade labour for pots.
After a shower of rain, people inside and outside the tribe all kept busy shifting pots of water into their houses.
Now, because of the unique circumstances, if the shaman felt it was going to rain, he would inform everyone in the tribe in advance. As soon as they saw the sky change, everyone would hurriedly move their water-receiving pots and line them up outside their houses until there was not even enough space for them to walk. When it rained, few people remained outside. They were all busy collecting water.
The movements in the ground were not only felt on the edges of the mainland but also happened in other places, especially in the mountainous forests where the Flaming Horn tribe settled. Here, it was even more intense, and every time the ground shook, there would be chaos in the woods. Animals would start roaring, and birds would fly around chaotically.
What shocked Shao Xuan most was when he went out for a hunt, he saw a volcano in the mountain forest. The volcano had not erupted for a long time, but a pool of lava was forming atop the depressions of the mountain. Shao Xuan had been there with the hunting team.
It hadn't erupted for thousands of years, and there were many plants and living animals there, so Shao Xuan paid no attention to the area.
But this time, when he went out with the hunting team, as they were walking to their resting cave, he looked over at the mountain. It looked exactly like before, but Shao Xuan felt an inexplicable sense of danger.
Shao Xuan talked to the rest of the hunting team. They looked at the volcano but felt nothing special.
Only Shao Xuan had an uneasy feeling about this. To him, the volcano was like a terrifying monster, slowly waking up. It looked tranquil, but it might not remain so.
He didn’t mean that giant beasts actually lived there. Shao Xuan just felt uneasy when he saw this volcano. It was an instinctive reaction, his sixth sense. He knew it wasn’t for no reason.
After the successive earthquakes happened, Shao Xuan suddenly had a strong feeling that something was about to happen. If it was indeed about to happen...
He took a deep breath and asked the farmers whether they sensed any abnormalities in the ground.
Some of the newly planted crops with shorter growth cycles were close to maturity. They were sidedishes that some warriors did not like, but non-totem warriors liked them. They were good for their bodies, so seeing as there were unused lands, the workers who took care of the farm decided to plant these seeds.
The harvested millet and crops that could be stored for a long time were processed and placed in the warehouse. They continued to forge weapons. To ease everyone’s hearts, they had been making necessary preparations.
As they faced successive earthquakes, the rainy season arrived.
According to the situation in previous years, the rainy season here was not as noticeable as when they crossed the river. The only apparent difference was it rained a lot more. It didn’t just rain more, but it was heavy rain too. Everyone no longer took out their containers to receive the rain as often as before. This did not reduce the panic in people’s hearts.
The ground shook once again, and many clay pots placed in the rain were overturned, and some even broke.
Some people were caught off-balance during the earthquake. All kinds of utensils clanged and banged together. Children cried from the houses.
The situation now was already considered tolerable. After all, the earthquakes happened so often that everyone already became mentally prepared. It was not as scary as the first time it happened. Everyone had panicked like headless chickens the first time, fearing the unknown.
Only five days had passed since the last earthquake. The interval between each earthquake was getting shorter.
The rain was falling more rapidly. If this happened in the past, people living near the rivers would be worried about flooding. Such strong rains usually caused their farms to be flooded.
However, no one was thinking about the flooding now because the water level of the river was still very low.
The Lu tribe.
The leader of the Lu tribe, with a stonelike expressionless face, stood in front of the water body occupied by their tribe. It had already become a dry abyss.
Since the end of the winter, water had stopped coming out of this pool. Even as the rain fell hard during this rainstorm, there was no water to be seen in the pool although water levels were rising everywhere else.
This rainy season was unusual and not many people had experienced this. The rains were heavy and turbulent, but the water level in the river still remained low.
The Drumming tribe who lived on the edges of the mainland felt this more strongly.
The patrolling soldiers stood on the bank of the big river, and as they looked into the distance, huge fearful river beasts jumped out of the water and gave out long roars.
Having lived here for so long, they knew that at this time of the year, the overlords of the river would be roaring and patrolling the area with their troops. But this was the first time they heard such unusual roars from the river. Their calls were much sharper and hurried, and this made the people even more alarmed.
Every year, all kinds of river beasts would be leaving the river during the rainy season, but this year, they left even earlier, before the rainy season even arrived!
This year, the crocodiles of the tribe had not taken their leave, but they rarely appeared. It was even rarer to see them enter the river. Most of the time, they stayed far away from the shorelines.
During this year’s rainy season, the water levels of the boundless river declined very early. The levels fell significantly even before the rainy season had ended.
No matter how heavy it rained, there was no way they could save the falling water level in the river.
“What do you guys reckon will happen?” a warrior of the tribe asked as he wiped rain off his face.
He didn’t hear the other people’s response. When he looked at them, his companions were staring at the river, their eyes widening in fear as they saw something terrifying.
“What are you looking at? Why…”
Without another word, the soldier saw the situation at the river.
They couldn’t see it too clearly. After all, In fact, they were far away, and thick misty curtains blurred their view. But merely the shadow of the figure was enough to scare these soldiers. Frightened, they were out of breath, almost suffocating.
Within the low waters in the river, they saw a massive river beast appear on the surface. It was not just any beast. It was the river overlord, who used to make its enemies frighten in fear. It suddenly exploded.
Yes, they were not mistaken. The beast exploded directly.
Like soft clay that was squished hard, it exploded.
Far in the distance, there was blood everywhere. The beast’s horrifying cry came to an abrupt halt. No other river beasts appeared, and the river suddenly became quiet once again. Maybe there were sounds when the incident happened, but the river bank was too far away, and the rain muffled all the sounds from afar, so the warriors of the tribe didn’t hear any other sounds.
In the distance, the river was shrouded in bloody mist, and everything else could not be seen.
The heavy rain fell on the people and entered their eyes. It flowed past the narrow pupils of those from the Drumming tribe. They could tolerate the water entering their eyes, but the hurried rain fell too quickly, and as it dripped into their eyes, it caused a slight discomfort. But now, the soldiers did not feel it at all.
After a moment of silence, the warriors of this tribe responded, and together, they all took a deep breath under the cool freshness of the rain.
The rainwater poured into their trachea through their nasal cavities, and several soldiers choked, coughing through their lungs. In fact, the choke was not as serious. After all, they had just recovered from the shock. This was a natural post-traumatic behaviour.
That was the river overlord! Everyone was terrified of it, and it asserted its dominance in the river. It was turned into a cloud of blood-fog in an instant!
What force could be so powerful?!