GDK 677: A village
After Han Shuo boosted his flight speed with the demonic yuan in his main body, Bonnie and his party had no way of catching up to Han Shuo and Akley. The distance between the two parties gradually grew further and further apart.
Akley was very curious and kept on asking how Han Shuo managed to escape from the godhunter and how he rescued him from Bonnie. Han Shuo came up with an excuse by saying that Dolores had hurried over and scared the godhunter away.
As to the matter about rescuing him from Bonnie, Han Shuo explained that he used a type of hallucinogen. As Akley, at the center of the commotion, only saw that their surroundings were covered with fog before they managed to escape, he did not question Han Shuo’s explanation.
Akley had an approximate idea of the location of the divine essence mine but unfortunately, both of them were unfamiliar with Elysium and they didn’t even know where they were. They wouldn’t be able to locate the treasure without first finding their own location.
“We need to find a settlement and ask the locals there!” Akley said.
“Of course we will. But before that, we must first remove that tracker on you. Otherwise, Bonnie and his bunch will get to you eventually,” Han Shuo nodded and suggested.
“Sure. You find a safe place to land and we will carefully search for it,” after having been saved by Han Shuo twice, in addition to still being wounded, Akley was receptive to Han Shuo’s suggestion.
Han Shuo boosted the coverage area of his consciousness using the Cauldron Spirit’s energy, allowing him to detect activities even further away from him.
Han Shuo yet again selected a barren hill and soon, he landed on top of it with Akley.
“I’ll start examining myself!” Akley said softly after he sat down on a rock deep green in color. He closed his eyes and started searching for the tracker on himself.
Being heavily injured and having recovered just a small amount of his energy, Akley wasn’t at his best condition and therefore failed to locate the tracker on his body.
Seeing that Akley was facing some trouble locating the tracker, Han Shuo pulsated his consciousness, concentrating his full attention on Akley. He started carefully probing for anomalies within Akley’s body. The consciousness was formless, incorporeal, and all the more elusive after it reached Omen realm. Akley could not detect Han Shuo’s actions.
After a while, Han Shuo finally said, “At the back of your chest, on a section of bone near your heart! It seems that you have previously received a heavy blow to your back. The tracker must have been planted there at that time!”
“That wretched Bonnie, he could have easily finished me off but he didn’t because he was waiting for me to slowly exhaust all my energy so that he can capture me alive. What a bloody brilliant idea!” Akley slowly became aware of Bonnie’s intention.
For Bonnie to be able to strike Akley on the back and leave a tracker near his heart meant that Bonnie was totally capable of killing Akley by shattering his heart! However, Bonnie was more interested in claiming everything in Akley’s soul.
A god who was slightly knowledgeable about souls could very easily obtain any information it wanted from the soul of any mortal. However, as one’s strength increases, one’s soul would grow more complex. An ordinary lowgod may be able to obtain every little piece of information from the soul of demigod, but to extract information from the divine soul of another god of the same class, that would be an impossible feat.
Bonnie obviously had no way of obtaining the information he wanted from Akley’s divine soul and therefore didn't dare kill him. Instead, he schemed on capturing Akley alive, bringing him back to Blue Ocean Continent, and having someone with even mightier strength pull the information off Akley’s brain.
“Quickly remove that tracker. Otherwise, it won't be long till they find their way here!” Han Shuo hastened.
Akley wasted not a word and started mustering the energy of destruction within his body at the back of his chest. After locating the tracker in accordance with Han Shuo’s instruction, Akley suddenly pushed. A loud, high-pitched ringing sound was heard. Thereafter, Akley stopped straining himself and heaved a few heavy breaths.
After carefully sensing for a moment to verify that the tracker on Akley was destroyed, Han Shuo nodded and remarked, “That’s one problem solved. We can try going around this area and asking for our current location as well as the direction to our destination!”
“The divine essence mine is located inside the Dominion of the Overgod of Darkness. Based on the description on the scroll, the divine essence mine isn’t all that far away from the interplanar transportation facility where we came from. That’s why I escaped there!” Akley revealed to Han Shuo.
“Let’s go, we’ll find someone to ask!” Han Shuo again grabbed Akley and took to the air.
“Can you not do that next time? It’s very uncomfortable being dragged like this - feels like I'm being taken hostage!” Akley rolled his eyes and complained to Han Shuo.
“I’ll take note of that,” Han Shuo casually replied. He obviously did not take Akley’s words to heart.
It was only after arriving on Elysium that Han Shuo recognized just how expansive the material plane was. The two had to spend a long time just to fly out from a valley that housed an interplanar transportation facility. This would simply be inconceivable on Profound Continent.
According to Donna’s description, Elysium was thousands of times larger than Profound Continent and was perhaps the most vast material plane in the universe. Han Shuo wasn’t completely convinced of those claims but he finally understood that Donna’s words were true after arriving at this material plane.
Throughout Han Shuo’s entire flight in the valley, he did not discover any trails of animals. He only observed the presence of bizarre looking plants. Han Shuo was puzzled with the finding.
Finally, they exited the valley. All that appeared before their eyes was a land with yellowish soil that stretched beyond the horizon.
Han Shuo had learned from Dolores that after traversing the plain of yellow soil, he would find village settlements where he could ask the villagers for directions to the City of Shadows. Although Han Shuo wasn’t planning on heading to the City of Shadows just yet, he still had to find some locals for help. Therefore, he spent two days traversing the plain with Akley in his hands. Soon after crossing the plain, he discovered presences of life.
Han Shuo did not discover a single lifeform while flying across the barren plain. He immediately sped up when he discovered the presence of other humans.
Soon enough, a small village similar to one Han Shuo found on Profound Continent appeared in his sight. Before entering the village, Han Shuo probed the place with his consciousness and discovered that those human souls were comprised of an assortment of strengths, contrary to Han Shuo’s expectation of finding a population fully comprised of godly existences.
“I've found a village with people. But don’t worry, they aren't all that powerful. It should be very safe!” Han Shuo put Akley on the ground and the two started walking to the village.
Han Shuo could hear laughter and cheerful voices in there before he got close to the village. By using a mystical demon, Han Shuo discovered that the village was holding a religious ceremony. Based on his understanding of the Calamity Church, Han Shuo immediately recognized that those villagers were praying to the three Overgods of the Calamity Church.
The commoners in this world were much more formidable than those on Profound Continent, perhaps because elemental energies were abundant in the atmosphere of Elysium. After a short observation, Han Shuo discovered that most of the villagers were demigods along with a handful of basegods. Even children of young ages possessed strength equivalent to archmages and swordmasters on Profound Continent.
“Perhaps you don’t understand the more detailed situation on Elysium, but usually when one cultivates to lowgod strength, they will not remain in small villages like this. Instead, they will head to big cities and attempt to join the forces of large family clans in order to obtain power and wealth, advancing further in life.
“Most of these people that remain in villages are the mediocrity, or perhaps children who have yet to mature. Therefore, it’s without a doubt that there isn’t any real expert to be found in the village. Even the godhunters will not come to villages like this because they won’t find any gods!” Akley explained after Han Shuo put him back on the ground.
“This is your first time on Elysium, but why do you sound like you know a lot about this world?” Han Shuo asked, tilting his head.
“This may be my first time, but my master had come to Elysium many times before. Every time he returned from Elysium, he would recount with great detail what he encountered in his venture. That’s why I’m more knowledgeable than you in this aspect!” Akley explained.
“Where’s your master now? Why isn’t he coming with you given the situation?” Han Shuo was amazed and asked the logical follow-up question.
Alley began to frown slightly, pursing his lips to one side and bunching his brows. He let out a sigh and answered, “He was heavily injured on Elysium and soon after he returned to Blue Ocean Continent, those from Bonnie’s family clan encircled him... and killed him.”
“I’m sorry for your loss.” Han Shuo felt bad for reminding Akley of the painful event.
Akley forced a smile and replied, “It’s okay. I have come to Elysium not just to obtain the divine essence mine, but also to find the man that injured my master. Once I find out who he is, I will avenge my master!”
Han Shuo silently doubted Akley’s oath. If his master was severely injured against that assailant, then what exactly could Akley alone do to that person?
“What do you mean with those eyes?” Akley furiously glared at Han Shuo and said in an irritated voice, “Yes, my strength now is indeed very weak. But after I found the divine essence mine and obtain sufficient divine essence containing the energy of destruction, the situation will be completely different!”
Han Shuo inwardly nodded after hearing Akley’s explanation. It turned out that the reason Akley sought that divine essence mine wasn’t simply for the goal of getting rich.
“We are here!” Han Shuo and Akley had unwittingly entered the village as they conversed. Some of the children who were happily playing went to the two and surrounded them, asking where they came from in their childish voice.
“A place far, far away!” Akley answered impatiently.
Han Shuo, however, wasn’t as unfriendly. He pulled out some random small toys from his space ring and gave one to each of them in all smiles. The children were very happy to receive the toys. They cheered and jumped about while pulling on the corners of Han Shuo’s shirt.
Several adults in the distance saw how friendly Han Shuo treated the kids which left them a good first impression. They greeted Han Shuo from a distance, indicating Han Shuo to come to them.
“Relax man! We are here to ask for assistance, not to pick a fight. Quit scowling!” Han Shuo advised Akley as they walked deeper into the village. However, it appeared that Akley did not heed the advice.
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