Last chapter recap: Aofeng saves a Crimson Forge squad from corpse eaters.
Chapter Three – The Secret Land
After a short period of celebration, the people’s excited gazes gathered on the person and the wolf nearby. That was a youth clad in black robes with cold features.
Aofeng put away the short Vanquisher of Armies. Liao Yao turned back into a normal silver wolf. The mercenaries moved to form a path of their own accord. Their eyes when they looked at her were filled with shock, respect and gratefulness. Most importantly was that the person’s presence when they appeared out of the sky had won over everyone here.
Thetan and Vino exhaled in relief and turned to look at the black-clad person walking towards them. When they looked, their shock erupted. In battle just now, they had not seen the person’s appearance clearly. When they looked now, they found it was such a young and beautiful youth.
“Mimicry? That’s a sacred beast!” The breath they had just exhaled was sucked in again. Thetan had gone to many places and was widely learned. He naturally knew that only magus beasts that were sacred rank or above could use mimicry. His gaze when he looked at Aofeng became even more astounded. Which prestigious family was this young master from?
People would usually not obtain such high ranking magus beasts unless it was a prestigious family.
Thetan walked forward. He bent forward slightly and his right hand turned into a fist at the left of his chest as he made a full bow. “Young Magister Daren, I am very grateful for your help! Thetan of Crimson Forge gives you my respect.”
Aofeng looked around and didn’t see Rong Luo. She was slightly disappointed. She said coolly, “Gather the spoils, we must leave here soon. Otherwise, the blood will attract more corpse-eating ghosts.”
The surrounding mercenaries were overjoyed. While the corpse-eating ghosts were the bottom among the nine-star magus beasts, and they gave off a noxious odor, their entire body was treasure. Their claws and teeth could be sold. Aofeng telling them to clean up meant that the person was giving this wealth to them. Even if they hadn’t completed the mission this time, their trip could be considered fruitful.
Several dozen nine-star magus beast corpses were nothing to Aofeng. All of her interest was on the Fire Dragon Fruit at Soul Breaking Cliff, so she did not care.
“Thank you for your generosity!” Thetan said with a respectful and joyful smile. He hurriedly directed his subordinates to clean up the battlefield as fast as possible, and then left with Aofeng to continue to move towards the Soul Breaking Cliff.
Through Thetan’s introductions, Aofeng learned the identities of this group. They were the Ninth squad of the Crimson Forge Mercenary Company. Thetan and Rong Luo were extremely close friends.
Rong Luo had brought the people that had just left Qin City to participate in the Neversetting Sun City’s magic beast tide. Thetan’s squad had coincidentally received the mission of the Fire Dragon Fruit. They planned to first obtain the fire dragon fruit and then meet up with Rong Luo on their return. They hadn’t expected to have the bad luck to encounter a large swarm of corpse-eating ghosts.
“You are also searching for the Fire Dragon Fruit?” Aofeng’s fine brows creased as she reminded them, “According to my knowledge, there are many spirit beasts that reside on Soul Breaking Cliff. Even one spirit beast isn’t something that your squad can withstand. Aren’t you going to your deaths?”
“Is Zhui Yun Daren‘s magus beast that sensed this?” Thetan looked with admiration at Liao Ya. He then glanced at Aofeng who had an aloof expression from the start and rarely spoke. He was even more sure of his guess. Only sacred beasts could feel the presence of other high star-level spirit beasts.
Vino laughed from the side and added, “So Daren has also come for the Fire Dragon Fruit. You really found the right people. Actually, our squad received this mission last year, and we found a secret.”
Aofeng’s eyebrow rose. “Secret?”
“Yes, Daren, there is actually more than one place where the Fire Dragon Fruits grow.” Thetan said to Aofeng without concealing anything. “There is a Fire Dragon Fruit near the front of Soul Breaking Cliff and it will attract many mercenaries and magic beasts when it matures. There will most likely be great chaos then. This is something everyone knows. Last year when Vino and I came here, we accidentally wandered into a hidden valley that reaches into the depths behind Soul Breaking Cliff. Fire Dragon Fruit also grows there as well, and it seems to be the nest of only a single sacred beast. We picked the fire dragon fruit when the front was in chaos and finished our mission.”
The Fire Dragon Fruit matured once a year. If one knew the location, they could come to pick them annually. Thetan undoubtedly was trusting Aofeng greatly to speak of this.
Seeing Aofeng’s slightly furrowed brow, Thetan smiled honestly. “Zhui Yun Daren, do not worry. You saved so many of us here. We will not hold a mere Fire Dragon Fruit so highly. If we only find one, naturally it will belong to Daren. Even if there is more, we only need to present one to finish the mission.”
To the person who had saved their lives, the Crimson Forge mercenaries that were usually honorable would not be frugal.
“Many thanks, the Fire Dragon Fruit is very important to me at this stage, I will not refuse.” Aofeng smiled slightly and sighed inwardly. This really was karma. If she hadn’t saved these people, then she might still be having a headache over the Fire Dragon Fruit at the front of Soul Breaking Cliff that everyone wanted.
After the group finished their discussion, the light suddenly brightened, the giant trees above their heads decreasing as their vision broadened.
There was a tall mountain range that stretched into the distance. Alarming roars of ancient wild beasts could be hear from within. Soul Breaking Cliff was in the distance. A verdant green plant on the cliff could be seen from far away. The red fruit among the green leaves was unusually eye-catching. It was still wrapped by the leaves. It hadn’t completely matured.
“Daren, after the Fire Dragon Fruit matures, the green leaves around it will completely open. We will wait here for the Fire Dragon Fruit here to mature,and then detour into the mountain valley during the chaos,” Thetan said in a low voice to Aofeng.
Aofeng nodded coolly. “Set up camp. If we cannot even wait for that long, we will not succeed in doing anything.”
Thetan and Vino exchanged a look and a smile when they heard this. Their admiration of Aofeng increased.
This was clearly a proud noble young master from a large family, but this person wasn’t just strong, he was reliable and calm in his conduct, and didn’t put on any arrogant airs. While he was cool in personality and seemed to keep people at a distance, there was no awkward feeling when they interacted together. That coldness and pride seemed to be innate and natural to other people, and made them feel respect and reverence.
When they set up camp at the base of the cliff, there were many groups of explorers and mercenaries in the surroundings. The people who were able to come here were magister and swordsmen that were seventh level or above. Many people were in second rank. Seeing the flame insignia that each member of Crimson Forge Mercenary Company had, many people had expressions of shock and they descended into discussion.
“It’s Crimson Forge Mercenary Company!”
“The large mercenary company on the continent. They have also come for the Fire Dragon Fruit? Ooh, this is bad, we don’t have any hope!”
“Ah, even if it is Crimson Forge Mercenary Company, it is hard to say if they can obtain the Fire Dragon Fruit from under the spirit beast’s claws. It will depend on who is fastest when the time arrives. Maybe we will all die.”
Just as people were in hot discussion, Aofeng and the other two people who were at the front of the camp heard a disdainful laughter.
“Crimson Forge? Are they so great? I, Ba Erbo, don’t believe it! Rong Luo, that coward, is hiding in Neversetting Sun and resting, but tells you, Thetan, to put you life on the line. He’s really honorable! Haha … …”
Coward? This person dared to speak of Big Brother Rong Luo this way!
Aofeng’s eyes flashed with cold light and she turned to look. The person who had spoke up in mockery walked, surrounded by a big group of mercenaries, towards Crimson Forge’s camp. This was a young male that was about twenty five or so who had hair standing up and wore an insignia with a wing on his shoulders.
“Flying Aspara Mercenary Company?” She seemed to have seen this insignia before. Aofeng immediately recalled it.
Translator Ramblings: I wonder if my experiment with using big brother should end and go back to doing something like Da Ge instead?