CHAPTER-35 THE STRANGE PLACE
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things had grown significantly difficult for me as the days passed on in a dull haze 

the past six months had grown harder to bear with each passing month  

he was getting nowhere 

how long was he going to be stuck here 

what was he supposed to do to go further in his soul cultivation 

 I was so wrapped up in the weight of these thoughts that I just lay there staring at the light ball floating in the air 

 I couldn't get out of bed no that was wrong 

it wasn't that I couldn't 

but I did not want to 

even though 

I hadn't slept much at all, the nightmares

 was getting more vivid  and worse every day

they had been haunting me like this since I had killed that boy 

it was as if something dark were crawling inside of my mind 

and when you can't fight something like this

you have no choice but to let it happen, 

So I didn't have any desire to move, 

as I let the body tremor calm down 

trying not to think about my troubles and my new responsibility 

I had taken in the scrawny boy called Xu Lin under my wing whatever that was worth 

 that decision had only brought along with it a new set of trouble

 and I really did not want to deal with it right now 

but still. 

I had gotten worse and worse as my anger had gotten out of control every now and then

most of 

 the time it seemed that I was just going around in circles,

sometimes it would feel as if I could go anywhere

and I felt stuck

it was frustrating

my cultivation had stagnated and without any guidance, I had no idea how to proceed

I had asked Lin Su for advice 

but all she could tell me was I was a pseudo third-tier warrior and she had no idea how to proceed according to her it was my obstacle to clear 

 my mood had begun to go foul at every small complication  that occurred in my life even mediation and chanting did little to help my mind sate 

 

the only time I had any sense of peace was when I taught the little boy Xu Lin 

I never learned how to find out the spiritual roots of someone 

but I had found out enough about the martial artist practice that I could aid him 

so I began to teach him the  'oceanic tide body art',

our teaching sessions were the only thing that had  any form of effect on my emotions,

but due to my  lack of progress in both my physical and soul cultivation was the heaviest of my concern 

 and lately, the boy had begun entering the mine for many days to end 

leaving me  to stew over my thoughts

a few days ago 

my worries of what could possibly be happening to him to be troubling and causing me such trouble as this

but then he came back for another lesson

his spirit was bright,

like the sun that glares through my cloudy mind

he smiled at me as if I had saved his world from some great enemy

but now he had been gone for a weak 

I wasn't worried the kid had shown great promise and by my estimate, he could handle himself against any none practitioner 

and the practitioners of the mine left the mortals alone in fact I was the only one who had been involved in the affairs of the mortals 

most of the days I would just pound my anger away in the mines but yesterday's discovery had caused me I stay away from the mines for a while 

as I thought about the day I couldn't help shudder 

I just pushed the thoughts of that place 

 far off in the recesses of my mind, 

as I got out my bedroll and began preparing to head out to the place

 my curiosity getting  the better of me 

............

All the rage in me slowly faded as I plodded through the well-lit tunnels.

 Many things had changed since I had hit the so-called bottleneck 

my cultivation was unique I had discovered this fact when I had begun to ask questions 

questions no one seemed to have answers to

 I had gained many disadvantages and many advantages from the cultivation technique 

One of his new advantages, something I had managed to keep a secret, was how fast I healed these days. 

cuts and, scrapes and bruises

would quit bleeding after two minutes

this fact had come as a shock to me

as I moved along the tunnel path I began thinking about my discovery 

I was going deep down the mine as it led deeper into the mine complex. 

I travelled down the tunnel into the branch tunnel hotel and after zig tagging around an hour or so I finally began to have the call or rather pull of something calling to me urging me to dive deep into the caves 

not to mention the creepy inaudible whispering I heard the closer I got to the place 

another quirk of my cultivation was that I had developed crazy bat level hearing 

so if I was hearing whispering then it wasn't my imagination it was really there 

as I slowly moved down the maze of pathways my heart began beating wildly 

as further I went the stronger  the feeling of unease became 

 as I somehow felt aware of something

there was someone here

something evil was hiding nearby and it was creeping me out as I made it to the position in  the cave 

the darkness was eerie and menacing yet

I couldn't just turn back now as I forced myself to move forward 

finally, a path opened in front of me as I looked at I just shuddered 

the path was  long and steep 

it was also a little bit damp

the wall all-round me was filled with something akin to diamonds 

but a black mist clung to the chunk of diamonds along the wall like 

 a fog

the mist hung thick and heavy and it smelled bad

I knew what that meant and I dreaded what I would see on the other side of the black stone tunnel 

and in my experience when something dark and creepy calls you to turn around and leave and that is what I had last time but this I had a couple of factors completing me to go check out what was that place

as I walked I noticed something strange, it was strange because of the way that it made me feel 

as my foot touched the ground on the the moist ground 

 a sudden chill ran up my spine

my instinct screaming me to run 

when I looked behind me my heart skipped a beat  in terror at the sight of

a tall figure looming at the end of the path

it seemed to loom there menacingly as I took steps backwards 

"Well, well what have we here?"

the man moved closer and into the light 

he was an extremely beautiful man from any standard of viewpoint and he was tall 

tall like the Kandanrian guards and he was dressed exactly like Pollux 

and sure enough, think of the devil shall appear 

or at least  he would be mentioned 

"I can now see the wisdom in the actions of brother Pollux when he asked me the Greatest of the apostles of light John to watch over a child" the man began speaking out loud as if he was speaking to a crowd of fans 

in truth, he was not speaking to anyone in particular

only to himself

and his voice had started to 

echo strangely making the cave sound eerily silent like it was hollowing out and swallowing everything in its wake 

"oh, how I curse the time when I didn't understand  why my brother has suddenly decided to take a liking to this brat?"

"like a fool, I had questioned him and now look at what the brat has found"

"the tomb" the man had begun giggling and 

 I was frozen where I stood

my blood turned cold

"ah yes, the tomb that will soon be yours too if you manage to bring down his soul once again!" the man had shouted  loudly

and I flinched

and the man had laughed in my face before continuing

"and I would be a hero for bringing back this news if I do a good job maybe Joshua will finally want to be with me"

the man broke out in full-blown crazy laughter 

I just stood there and allowed the mad man to jump up and down while he giggled and laughed and talked to himself 

I couldn't sense any aura from him as I did from other practitioners and cultivators on so many other occasions 

but I couldn't help but shake off the feeling that this man was extremely dangerous like  an old, vicious snake

like I was staring at

"hahaha

look what we have here, the first of the great heroes to emerge from the order" 

the mad man had said pointing at me with his finger like he was making fun of me 

"what? What are you talking about?" I asked trying to keep the man talking 

he remained me a lot a boy Sam 

they both were crazy 

"Ahh yes, yes, yes, Yes, Yes, YES, YES," the man said  as he continued to jump around crazily and talk to himself

"heroes we will be heroes" the man suddenly quoted down and stood still as he began murmuring to himself 

the abruptly turned and pointed at me 

"No, I will be a hero while you will be dead I will not share"

the fuck this guy was one hundred per cent crazy 

without waitíng for my response, the man began murmuring and a ball formed at shot straight at me

In a flash dove down to doge, the ball but the ball disappeared as soon as it reached the tunnel entrance 

I looked in amazement as the ball dissolved into nothingness 

the man was also shocked as he looked at the ball

"what.....how did y..... to u vermin.......... I will kill you"

the man charged at me  and with a yell 

the man vanished from view and reappeared in a corner a short distance away

He was s holding a piece of broken stone

knife 

he wore a savage, unsightly expression on his face

I quickly rushed to get back up and evade the man 

as fast as I could and I did barely by a hair's breadth 

as I turned around 

the man  charged at me again, the stone knife gripped firmly in his hand

As the man came at me once more 

I quickly slid out of the way and dodged the man's blow 

I felt foolish doing the man's attack like this but my instinct kept screaming at me to not touch the knife 

I watched in horror as the man controllably crashed into the wall and by chance, I saw the man stab his knife into the wall 

as the knife penetrated the rock hard wall

 as I watched in horror, as the rock dissolve into dust and disappear into thin air

"What?!?" I screamed at the man and the mad man

"what? What?!" The man yelled back

I couldn't help but scream out in frustration 

I decided to punch the man before he was able to get back his barring but the man never gave me a chance 

the man once again began murmuring something as another ball appeared in his hand and shot toward me 

as I was charging forward with my fist pulled back I had no chance to avoid the frontal attack 

the ball hit like a battering ram and explode into a bright flash throwing me back into the other side of the wall 

as I landed on my back I  felt excruciating  intense pain from my chest and legs 

a strange strong burning sensation pulsated throughout my boy 

it was like the time guards had decided to use a burning whip 

it had felt like  

l was being electrocuted and burned at the same time 

but this time the pain was worse at least ten times worse 

my body shook violently until all the pain had passed

I looked up to see that the man was staring menacingly at me as he played with his stone knife with a mean icing smile that promised violence as his eyes granted it 

he slowly walked toward

"you see David it is nothing personal I have always been the but of jokes my entire life"

he spread his hands as if apologising 

" Oh, the creepy John who like children a little too much, the weird John who was only able to master one of the light's graces, the mad John who said he was in love with Joshua, the Dumb John  who loved to sleep, the dumb and dumber John who thought that the gods loved him, the stupid and crazy John"

he chuckled at his joke

as he approached me "well, I must admit I haven't expected such a great gift from the Great Sage, the God of Gods the gracefully light"

he said as he joined his hands in form of prayer 

"you are David, ..... oh I am so sorry David I didn't want to insult you, it is just that when I being back such a discovery I will be rewarded, celebrated, accepted and respected by my brother and I can't share that David it was only way opportunity to shine and be something more than the unwanted hated john"

the man spoke in one breathless breath without ever pausing to take a breath 

from all his rambling all I got was the dude was crazy and his name was John 

I looked down to see the wound that was causing so much burning pain 

as I saw it I was dumbfounded 

my skin was completely burned off from my chest to my crotch and my left hand was so badly burned 

 that I couldn't even tell if it was really my right or not

my clothes were charred and singed, I couldn't even feel myself anymore and I guess I could be considered dead

I couldn't say what had happened or whether this was actually happening or not

was it actually real?

was this some sort of hallucination?

because the closer I looked at my stomach the more I felt the pain 

I could see my stomach the skin was completely burned off 

I could see my own organs for crying out loud 

John was standing a foot away from me 

" Now David I wish you all the best for whatever comes next"

he raised the dagger and brought it down on me 

in defence, I grabbed a rock from the ground and threw it at him desperation taking hold

the rock flew and hit John square in the eyes 

causing John to stumble back 

to save me I jumped and rolled in the opposite direction

I was breathing heavily I could hardly stand, as I held my belly

the pain was unbearable and intense

I was going insane!

I was dying!!

suddenly my legs gave under me and I fell on my back 

in tried to get up and saw John leading heavily from his eye 

a diamond had replaced his left eye

but

I saw John shake off the pain and stand talk 

and he smiled at me like an amicable man 

"David, David it this all you got"

" tsk, tsk, tsk you would.......

whatever he wanted to say it was interrupted by a violent fit of coughing that took hold of john 

John coughed  and choked and spat out dirt

blood

his blood

His skin began smoking as I saw the black mist covering him like smog 

John was coughing so badly that he was barely able to breathe as I could hear his watering struggling breath 

John fell on his knees while cautiously coughing 

I watched in shock as the skin of the man began to wrinkle and  distort

the skin split apart and fell apart

The flesh was ripped apart

I finally regained a little strength as my acupoint continuously poured the cool energy into my body

I hastily got up and wobbled my way forward deeper down the diamond tunnel 

I wasn't waiting to watch whether That mad man John survived or not

suddenly I lost my footing and I fell down 

but instead of hitting the ground, I kept falling down 

I felt like 

 I was spinning endlessly as

 I kept on falling

I could hear the sound of people laughing

and then they stopped laughing as the noise began to fade into silence

the silence that followed seemed very unnatural

then I heard the howls of the violent winds as

I felt like I was going to pass out

everything was getting darker and darker

the darkness was growing

I was becoming scared

the cold wind  blew through my hair as I struggled to  get my bearings

but I kept falling down the long way down 

as I kept on falling down I felt as if  there was no longer any ground to support me

the feeling of falling seemed to go on forever and ever...

... and ever...

...And Ever...

..And...

...And...And...

....and...And... and.....and...And..... and... And...And.... and.....and... and.....suddenly I hit the ground with a small thud I landed on a soft bed like ground 

I tried 

 getting up but a strong burning pain suddenly struck me

and I collapsed onto my side with a groan

another painful pain shot through my head

as I lay on the soft mattress I began to cry and moan in agony as I laid there crying 

after several minutes passed I felt a slight sting on my forehead

as I opened my eyes I saw the face of a young boy no older than five  years old boy who was sitting beside me

when I looked further around

I saw the strange black robe the child was wearing

that was two sizes bigger than him 

I could see the room which I had woken up but couldn't make out any detail 

I looked back at the boy and he looked back at me with wide, innocent brown eyes

"Hey, hey, hey. it's ok I'm here now"

he said his small chubby face broke out in a bright smile 

" It took you long enough child, you should have come sooner"

then darkness took over me

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