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 Chapter 248: Get Away From Me, Stop Following Me!

Bai Xiaochun's jaw dropped at the sight of the pillar of light, especially considering that floating right there in the middle of it was a key, right within arm's reach.

He took a deep breath. How could he ever have imagined that the random direction he picked to run in would turn out to be the exact location where the first key appeared?

Simultaneously, the appearance of the pillar of light caused Xuemei and Song Junwan to stop fighting for a moment and look over. Also, the Dharma protectors from both sides, regardless of where they were, all stopped in place and looked over.

The people who had been selected as Dharma protector for this trial by fire were all outstanding individuals; obviously, they all knew that the first person to get one of the keys would automatically be put in a very difficult position. Every single one of them seemed to hesitate for a moment, but then they all started flying at top speed toward the light, bristling with murderous auras.

"Anybody who fights with me over that key had better not blame me for killing them!" Song Que howled, the battle prowess of eight Earthstring Tideflows surging around him.

"Everybody else might be afraid of you, but not me, Zhou Hua!"

"Snatch that blood key!" As the voices of the Dharma protectors rang out, it heralded the beginning of the fierce fighting that was destined to take place in the Blood Wasteland.

When Bai Xiaochun heard the voices rising up, he shivered and said, "Dammit! I gotta get out of here!"

By that point, more than a dozen figures were already heading in his direction. Bai Xiaochun gasped and quickly began to back up.

However, the instant he began to move... to his complete and utter disbelief, the blood-colored key... began to move... straight toward him.

"Heavens, how could a key move!?" Bai Xiaochun was about to cry. Currently, one of Xuemei's Dharma protectors was closing in, and as soon as he caught sight of the blood-colored key, his killing intent surged. Clearly, his first goal was not to get the key, it was to kill Bai Xiaochun.

He was in the late Foundation Establishment stage, and held a blood-colored greatsword in his hand.

When Bai Xiaochun saw the man's deadly-looking blood sword, and his violent killing intent, it was obvious that the man wanted to kill him. Bai Xiaochun immediately got angry. "Y-y-you're... you're pushing things too far! I just saw the key and didn't even touch it, and yet you're gonna try and kill me?!"

His eyes narrowed, flickering coldly. Although he hadn't fought much in the Blood Stream Sect, his battle prowess had increased to a dramatically terrifying level. Even as the sword slashed down toward him, he planted his right foot down onto the ground and then sprang forward with all the power he could muster. He instantly blurred into motion, leaving nothing for the sword to slash through other than afterimages. In the blink of an eye, he had bashed directly into Xuemei's Dharma protector.

It was none other than... the Mountain Shaking Bash!

It was backed by the power of Heaven-Dao Foundation Establishment and three crystallized spiritual seas, which meant he was in mid Foundation Establishment. It was powered by the second level of the Undying Heavenly King, the fleshly body strength of six berserk ghosts. The Mountain Shaking Bash was a secret magic of the Undying Codex, and when fueled by such multiple levels of incredible power, it ensured that Bai Xiaochun was now like a vicious beast!

A bang rang out in all directions, low-pitched but shocking to the extreme. It was hard to imagine that a collision between two people would produce a sound as tragic as this.

Xuemei's Dharma protector screamed, and then blood spurted out of his mouth. Much of his body was already shattering, but that wasn't the end of things. His back bulged out, and his face turned violet as cracking sounds rang out from inside of him.

He began to spin backward through the air, his expression blank, his mind rapidly emptying.

At the same time, the dozens of other cultivators who were converging on the area looked on with tingling scalps as the Dharma protector who had just been bashed by Bai Xiaochun... exploded!

Bones, flesh, and blood spattered in all directions, and the man's soul was transformed into ash!

Even as his scream continued to echo about, he was killed in body and soul!

In any other sect, what had just happened would have left everyone too stunned to do anything. But this was the Blood Stream Sect, and its cultivators were cruel and merciless. Xuemei's other Dharma protectors quickly overcame their shock, and three of their number were the first to fly toward Bai Xiaochun.

Two of them were in late Foundation Establishment, and one of them was in the great circle. As they flew forward, three blood swords appeared, causing everything in the area to rumble. Most shocking among the group was one of the late Foundation Establishment cultivators, a middle-aged man with a long beard. Shockingly, he held an illusory stick of incense in his hand!

The incense was already burning, creating an aura that filled Bai Xiaochun with an intense sensation of deadly crisis. It was like every inch of his flesh and blood were screaming at him that this incense was completely and utterly dangerous.

Bai Xiaochun wasn't the only one to have such a reaction. The faces of the others in the area instantly fell....

"That's Yang Hongwu! He's the one Song Junwan said to look out for!!" Bai Xiaochun gasped, but what happened next caused his scalp to almost explode. There were about four or five people who... apparently because of the stimulation of the mysterious incense, began to emit auras, either from within their own bodies, or their bags of holding... that were all terrifyingly dangerous! Apparently, they were on the verge of joining the attack on him!

Bai Xiaochun had a profound cultivation base that enabled him to kill a late Foundation Establishment cultivator with a single bashing attack. However, to face three at the same time, one of them being in the great circle, and in possession of a shocking magical treasure, left him shocked and terrified. More than ever, he felt that the older generation in the Blood Stream Sect were all fear-inspiring individuals.

All of the Foundation Establishment cultivators who Xuemei and Song Junwan had called upon to act as Dharma protectors were either Chosen of their generation, or other famous individuals from the past.

That was especially true of the one terrifying cultivator Song Junwan had mentioned, Xiao Qing, who, for some mysterious reason, hadn't broken through into the Core Formation stage.

Regarding magical treasures, the fact that Blood Stream Sect cultivators were fond of robbing and pillaging meant that they tended to have a bit more of them than disciples from other sects.

Considering the danger he was facing, it was no surprise that Bai Xiaochun's scalp crawled with terror. However, none of that showed on his face. Backing up, expression cold, he said, "Nightcrypt doesn't have time to fool around with you people. I'm warning you, don't provoke me!" Combined with his icy, cruel expression, Bai Xiaochun was under the impression that his words were completely domineering. Turning, he pushed forward with a burst of speed and vanished.

Even as he sped off, the three blood swords descended in a net of death. They missed him, but the smoke from the incense swirled around, filling the area with terrifying fluctuations.

Even the mere sensation of those fluctuations caused Bai Xiaochun to pick up speed. Even as he left the first key behind, intense fighting broke out in his wake.

However, not everyone joined the attack. Some stood off to the side, and some merely left, clearly thinking the same thing that Bai Xiaochun had, that fighting over the first key was too dangerous.

Bai Xiaochun flew off into the distance, looking over his shoulder occasionally. Considering that everyone was in the late Foundation Establishment stage or even more powerful than that, the fighting was clearly a life-or-death matter. Nobody was holding back, and some people were already resorting to their life-saving magical items. Heaven-shaking, earth-shattering explosions rocked the area, and fluctuations that bordered on Core Formation could be felt, leaving Bai Xiaochun completely shaken.

"With the Undying Heavenly King, I might be able to take them on one by one, but fighting so many people at the same time, I might lose my poor little life...." Picking up speed, he sighed emotionally as he thought about how coincidental it was that the key had appeared right in front of him moments ago. Assuming he kept on flying as he was now, there shouldn't be any more such incidents.

As far as the fighting went, Bai Xiaochun felt that maybe after the fourth key showed up, it would be a bit safer to start participating. After flying along for the better part of two hours, he had put quite a bit of distance between himself and the last location, and finally decided to look around for a place to meditate for a while.

"I've flown far enough away that I shouldn't run into anyone else," he thought. "As for the keys, whoever wants to fight over them can have at it." He was quite pleased at his own insightfulness, and was just musing about how bright and intelligent he was when the third hour in the Blood Wasteland arrived.

In that very moment.... Bai Xiaochun's eyes went wide, and he let out an exclamation of shock. There, right in front of him, was a bright red dot of light.

Within the space of a few breaths of time, it began to grow so brightly that it turned into a pillar of light that shot up into the sky. Anyone in the Blood Wasteland would be able to see it.

It was a very strange thing, and all of a sudden, Bai Xiaochun thought back to what had happened in the Endless World of Blood.

"No way...." he thought. "I'm not the one trying to become blood master. How could this be happening...?" Staring at the key in the pillar of light, he sighed, and then turned to leave, only to find that the key was flying toward him.

"Get away from me! Stop following me...."

Thinking about how the group of people had been fighting earlier, he wanted to cry. The terrifying ripples that had spread out from that fight were enough to send him running in the opposite direction.

However, the key behind him picked up speed, chasing Bai Xiaochun relentlessly through the Blood Wasteland....

Soon, cultivators on both sides of the conflict realized what was happening, and their eyes went wide with disbelief.

The first key... appeared right in front of Bai Xiaochun. That could have been chalked up to chance.

But for the second key to do the same.... They gritted their teeth and told themselves that it was another coincidence. And yet... they were completely dumbfounded at the sight of the key chasing Bai Xiaochun.

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