A youth with a bruised face looked forth at the crackling flames. It was already night right now as the battle had ended long before that. Due to Liu Xun's newly learned language. He somehow managed to convince all the lizardmen to let them off in return for their chieftess being unharmed. The negotiations were completely unfavorable as the chieftain was already glaring daggers deeply at him.
Soon after the human cultivators were released from the encirclement, Liu Xun let the white lizardman chieftess go. The frightened chieftess then ran towards the embrace of the black-scaled chieftain as she ran behind his back, scared to look at that vicious black-robed cultivator again.
Liu Xun could already feel his reputation begin to sink deep into the dirt as almost everybody including the lizardmen all threw him dirty looks. In fact, when both sides were about to leave. The lizardman chieftain even asked Liu Xun to be a man and take one punch to the face. Of course, it would be completely unreasonable for a mid-essence foundation beast to punch a mid qi gathering cultivator. He would be smashed into paste. Thus, the chieftain said that he would only use his strength with no qi imbued inside. Liu Xun decided to accept his punishment like a man and took one punch to the face.
Well, that was how he currently has a huge bruise on his left cheek. After that punch, most of the looks of his surroundings softened. Even the white lizardman chieftess looked at him less warily than before. Still, spilled milk cannot be returned, past actions cannot be ignored. The youth has finally learned the consequence of his actions today. May I never repeat such a bad move again, he thought to himself.
[You better not, or else there is no difference between you and evil cultivators anymore.]
The system replied back in an unhappy tone. It was usually rather neutral, but for some reason, it has been rather moody lately.
In fact, even the rest of the group was treating him rather coldly. It must have been due to that previous incident. Though, Liu Xun himself could not find much fault with it as he had done so in a moment of impulse. To prevent the chieftess from killing herself was his utmost priority back then and his most efficient means was to subdue her. As he was equally powerless to her, he couldn't just resort to soft means as he may give the impression that he was really weak. He needed to maintain the facade that the cultivators were in a superior position at that moment.
Nonetheless, his reputation sure has fallen to a new low. Now, only Millie and Senior Gan were still treating him as per normal. In fact, even though the lizardman chieftain did punch him in the face, there was also a slight conversation after that.
"Despite your despicable actions towards my wife, I am very grateful for you to stop her reckless actions."
The black-scaled enormous lizard mentioned in a serious tone. This was after a serious negotiation that led the tribe of lizardmen to let the cultivators proceed forward at the expense of the chieftess's life.
"Here, take this. Still, do not think that I like the way you handled things."
The lizard said while tossing a fang over, it then turned away as it led the entire tribe of lizardmen into the distant mist. Inside the large horde of lizardmen, even the white-scaled chieftess could be seen hidden in between. Of course, that frightened lizard avoided contact with his eyes, making the youth feel rather awkward. Maybe, he had really done an impulsive thing.
The group had already settled down in the wasteland near the Yin Frost Basin. They could already see the shoreline from their position, mainly because the area was barren without any areas of obstructions. It was probably around 3 or 4 miles distance from the basin region where the group would split up.
Liu Xun looked toward his ax while laying by the fire as he recounted the incident that he happened today. He had fought against dozens of lizardmen, this was including the 2 qi stage 9 lizardmen defender and weakened chieftess.
In fact, Liu Xun saw the brown-scaled defender once again. The lizardman gave him a complex look as it understood the human's decision but it could not accept the result where he tarnished the sacred duel by now finishing it off. Even though it kept its life, now that its two hands were gone, the number of things it could do was largely reduced. It was perhaps better off dead.
As the lizardmen tribe left, the chieftain did warn the group of advancing forth as there was a huge change in the basin. The chieftess was forced to use her strongest spells to ward off major danger as they fled. This was why she had her cultivation level reduced from essence foundation to qi gathering stage. Looking at their tired and weary backs, Liu Xun sighed as he tried to imagine what could have caused the massive displacement of an entire tribe. No ideas came to mind.
"So...how are you doing at the moment?"
A gentle and carefree voice traveled from his side. The silver-haired lady in white fur garments took a clay bowl filled with warm soup as she sat beside Liu Xun. Millie looked at the black-robed youth who was dressing his wounds as she slowly scooped up the thick fluid and gently blowing on it before placing it between her tender lips. She gave a light taste of it to test the temperature before gulping the entire thing.
"Salty and saucy with a tinge of mushroom flavor. Just the way I like it!"
She mentioned in joy as her eyes turned into crescents. The lady took another spoonful as she repeated her actions yet again and relished in the taste of her meal. She quietly hummed in joy as she ate her meal up gulp by gulp. Liu Xun by her side was still focused on his injuries as he had received many cuts and bruises despite being able to dodge most attacks. He had to minimize energy loss and sometimes taking a light wound is better than expending more qi to completely avoid the injury. Of course, some injuries were not due to the battle but also due to his rash actions like the chieftain's punch. He could continue to hear the sounds of gulping and satisfaction by his side as he was proceeding with his task. The young man felt slightly perturbed as he could feel hunger start to rise within him.
The protesting stomach rumbled with discontent. Liu Xun ignored its protest as he continued to bandage his injuries with more haste. A tinge of red could be seen on his face by the fireplace. Millie who was by his side looked at him with slight surprise, before turning into a teasing expression. She dipped her spoon into the soup once again, pulling out another spoonful of thick creamy mushroom soup. This time rather than bringing it towards herself, the young lady stretched her hand out towards Liu Xun and left the spoon almost within biting distance.
"Well~do you want a bite?"
She said out with a slightly devious smirk hung on her face. She gently waved her wooden spoon as the soup gently rocked from side to side, tempting the distracted youth. Liu Xun had by then already stopped focusing on his bandages as he looked at the tantalizing spoon. He looked at her lips which had previously come into contact with the spoon as he thought to himself, an indirect kiss. Slightly pondering seriously for a few moments, Liu Xun then quickly shook his head as he cleared off all impure thoughts. He gave a sigh as he continued to bandage his injuries on his right forearm, ignoring the temptations of the silver-haired seductress.
"No thanks, I will have my meal later. Thank you for offering though."
"Aww~you are no fun."
The silver-haired girl pouted as she then placed the wooden spoon into her mouth as she tasted the mushroom soup with glee.
The night slowly passed as the group silently meditated. This was the moment of peace after a long and tiring fight.
“N-no…this cannot be happening!”
A frightened voice cried out in the darkness. It seemed to echo into the endless void as it traveled into the vast distance. The voice sounded very clear yet one could tell through the hoarseness and stuttering that it was probably choked with tears as it calls out helplessly.
Whose voice is this, it is familiar yet so foreign…
“Please! You have to answer me!”
The sobbing voice continued to call out into the darkness. Yet, there was no response. The begging continued endlessly as the host keeps on trying to evoke a response.
A faint sound of rain pelting the ground could be heard in the distance as the voice continued to call out to something.
“P-please you can’t, @$&!£*¥! I beg you…”
The voice slowly fades as it gets more distant.
Wait, what do you mean!
"LIU XUN, WAKE UP ALREADY!!!"
A serious voice could be heard as the young man felt a pair of hands shaking his collar roughly. He slowly opened his eyes as a blurry sight entered his sleepy vision. A blurry shade of silver and white entered his vision, based on that it was probably Millie. The colour of the sky was still dark, so it should not have been time to awaken yet.
"Uuuh...what is it?"
He said out in a confused tone.
"Don't 'what is it' me! You were clearly struggling in your dream just now!"
Millie asked in a very worried tone. She then looked at him hesitantly as she continued.
"You even mumbled 'what do you mean' in a very confused and aggrieved tone that woke me up! What were you dreaming about?"
Millie complained through her words as her scrunched-up eyebrows looked anxiously at Liu Xun while wiping his already drenched forehead with a blue handkerchief.
"What....was I dreaming about? I....don't know..."
The youth said in a confused tone as he slowly tries to recall the past words, but everything was in the darkness. There was a faint reminiscence of a call for help, but who or what? He was really clueless.
The silver-haired girl gave him a long look before standing up as she walked into the distance. She stopped for her moment to say one last word before walking off into the distance.
"It is fine if you cannot remember what happened. You probably should freshen up, there is about an hour or two before the sunrises. It would probably not be wise to go back to sleep again with that kind of dream."
Liu Xun nodded to the words as he slowly got up and started to get ready for a new day.
Who knows what were those dreams or words, it could imply anything yet nothing at all. Perhaps, only time can tell.