Chapter 43: Fear
Translator: Mike Editor: Chrissy
In a mansion at a county town.
By a French window, the setting sun casted its slanted rays into a vast living room where a man and a woman were standing in deathly silence. The room itself, on the other hand, as the setting sun continued to refract and reflect off the glamorous household utensils displayed in the room, had turned rather cozy.
Wan Qing's rosy cheeks had turned all pale and washed out. She had heard the conversation. She heard the helpless and terrifying call from the other end of the line. The report that was delivered was, perhaps to her, more terrifying than the man's unearthly shriek.
Every mutant was dead. All were murdered. How did this happen?
All eighteen mutants were all devastated by a single man. What an extraordinary battle achievement, and it would indubitably cause a tremendous sensation if this were to be known by the public.
An extraordinary battle achievement usually meant the rise of another superpower!
The fact that all eighteen mutants had taken their power enhancing drugs yet were still single-handedly defeated by a man alone made everything even more insidious and horrid.
Wan Qing was completely dumbstruck. It was not long ago when she was still indulging in the joy of the thought that her messy business would be neatly dealt. Now, all there was left to her were worry and great concerns.
If this man were to find her for revenge, would she be able to fend him off?
"Monster!" Her face was pale as a sheet as she spelt out her curses. Indeed, anyone with such power would indubitably qualify as a monster: a monstrosity that existed beyond reason.
The sound of that man's call of terror, as well as those desperate last words, were still echoing in her mind; it it caused her to tremble and be paralyzed in fear. They were indeed the sound of death.
Mu became taciturn. He slouched in his couch, voiceless and equally terrified. "How's this happening?"
He suddenly turned around with a cold face. His blood ran cold, striking chill into everything and everybody in this hallway. The intruding sunrays had dissipated, giving the piercing coldness the freedom to take dominance in this room.
For Mu, this was possibly the worst outcome of the entire operation. His frame of mind was understandably shaky. The usual appearance of a visceral smile was no more; instead, he was all grim-faced and glum-looking. Clearly, he was in a bad mood.
It was a team of eighteen mutants. For him, they were the principal force of his organization. Now that they were all dead, what else were there left to him?
"I never expected this to happen. Who is he? How could he possibly kill eighteen mutants all at once, let alone the fact that they had all taken the power-enhancing drug?" Wan Qing nervously mumbled.
Mu smashed his goblet on the floor, then heavily trampled on the shattered fragments of the glass.
"Goddamn!" he growled and bellowed.
The smile on his handsome face was no more, along with his class and composure. For him, this was an inexcusable failure as well as a shameful one. It was a hefty loss to him too.
"Don't be mad, Mu. Let's think of some ways to redeem all these," Wan Qing said. She postured as calm and clear-headed, but beneath that veneer of composure, there was the profound mixture of fear and panic.
Meanwhile, a man appeared in the hallway. He looked in his fifties, but he displayed quite an opposite image to that of a typical middle-aged man. He was lean and slender, and his face was clear of wrinkles. The only sign of aging was those tufts of silver hair. "This is not your fault, Mu. No-one would have expected this to happen."
He was right. A team of eighteen mutants with each empowered by the newly developed drug would sweep off an army of enemy as one would do a mat, let alone a single man.
With such a strong line-up, ambushing a single man should not have turned out in this way.
"Then, there must be something wrong with our line-up. Uncle Wen, I'm relying on you and your men to investigate what had happened. I want details." Mu's expression was still all gloomy and despondent.
"There is a possibility that Kong Kim might be involved in this. Isn't there a team of fighters sent out by Bodhi Genes in that area?" Wan Qing suggested.
Uncle Wen was taken aback by her suggestion, but he did not immediately reply. Following Mu's order, Uncle Wen instructed his men to go on a field trip to investigate the true cause of death of those eighteen mutants.
Meanwhile, Mu was frowning. He was also growing suspicious of the possibility that Kong Kim might have already arrived at the area.
"Go! Go search for signs of Kong Kim's presence," Mu coldly said.
Uncle Wen nodded in agreement. He arranged a team of a few people who worked under his direction and those with whom he had connections to scope out the movements of the troops deployed by Bodhi Genes.
A helicopter took off from its landing pad, hastily dashing towards the forest eighty li away.
These team of investigators were not skilful mutants or Kung Fu masters, but they were quite adept in their investigating skills.
Finally, they arrived at the area where the battle had just ceased. The scene was a truly blood-curdling one. Eighteen mutants were all lying lifelessly without a head.
Clearly, they were all killed by the same killer, and all, except for a few, had died without resistance. Judging by the traces and marks left on the trees and the ground, they concluded that amongst the eighteen mutants, only few fought their enemy before their eventual demise.
The rest were not even remotely a match to their opponent. All were beheaded seconds after the fight broke out. This conclusion made them terrified.
"Is this the work of Kong Kim? Has he arrived?" someone suggested.
There was something in what he said. In this world, only the Big Four, namely Kong Kim, Silver Wing, Fire Spirit, and White Tiger, could wreak such devastation on their opponents. At least, this was what's known to the public.
Later, they conducted a thorough search in the depths of the woods, but nothing could confirm the identity of the killer. Chu Feng had thoroughly cleaned up the murder scene so that even the slightest clue that could suggest his involvement in this sequence of heinous killing would be wiped clean.
In a mansion at a county town.
Mu had been updated with the latest report from his expedition team, but clearly, he was unimpressed by the team's lack of useful findings.
"All of the eighteen mutants had been beheaded in a similar fashion by the same weapon. Whoever the killer was, he was both swift and fierce, having the upper hand throughout the fierce battle," Uncle Wen later reported.
"I've heard that Kong Kim used only two weapons. One of them is a pestle that could be used to tame a beast, while the other being a blade of unparalleled sharpness," Wan Qing said.
Meanwhile, a secret report arrived at the doorstep. Upon reading, Uncle Wen's look on his face suddenly changed drastically.
He handed it over to Wan Qing. "What? Kong Kim had really arrived this morning without anyone's notice?" It came as a shocking news to everyone.
"Kong Kim has arrived!?" Mu flew into a fury. His face twisted out of shape because of anger, then driven by profound exasperation, he smashed his fist onto a wooden table next to him, almost splitting it in half.
He could no longer stay elegant and refined in his manners. Now that his skulking arrival was confirmed, the perpetrator of the heinous killing this morning should undoubtedly be him.
In face of his Buddha Blade, the eighteen mutants all seemed so insignificant, even after having taken the drugs.
"According to reliable sources, Kong Kim had indeed gone out from his hotel to the nearby mountains after he arrived, and he still hasn't returned yet. However, we still cannot confirm that he was indeed heading towards our men's encirclement this morning," Uncle Wen reported.
"Kong Kim, I will not let you off this time!" Mu was exasperated. The fierce look on his face had totally subsided the gentle and refined manner in both of his speech and his deportment. There was a fire of fury burning ablaze in his chest.
"What about that man? Did he never come into our men's encirclement?" Wan Qing had doubts about that "master" behind Chu Feng's back.
Then, she realized that Chu Feng's death could be easily attributed to the fierce battle between Bodhi Genes and Deity Biomedical Groups that had broken out in that area. Chu Feng was just an unlucky innocent killed amidst the exchange of fire.
Some harm inflicted on the bypassing innocent was totally unavoidable when two opposing forces go head-to-head. There was no-one to blame. Chu Feng died because he was just down on his luck.
It was quite a relief to her. There was nothing worth worrying. That "master" behind Chu Feng's back would never know the truth with regards to the death, so he would have no alternatives but to give in.
Out of the dense woods, Chu Feng finally had the county town in sight. His speedy pace slowed down at last.
"What a vicious woman! If I was to just kill her, it would bear no difference to me just letting her off. Death is too light a punishment for her heinous doing," Chu Feng mumbled to himself.
Chu Feng recalled the pick-up lady with whom he just met. She was still so young. Her freckled face made her look so sincere and innocent. She was a cheerful girl too. The smile on her young and innocent face was so pure and visceral. But who would have thought that she would die such a gory death? "You deserve better, girl." Chu Feng sighed.
There was a fierce look in his eyes. Although he was a cold-blooded murderer in the face of his enemy, there was still a soft spot in his heart. He could not bear to see the bullying on the small and the weak, especially when they were also good and kind-hearted people.
"I won't let you get off so easily this time. You will will eventually die, but I'll make sure that before you say your last words, your life will be spent in sheer horror and fear," Chu Feng viciously cursed.
He took out his communicator and rung up Lin Naoi.
The call was soon picked up.
Chu Feng was simple and straightforward. He asked her who had been using her
communicator for the past few days.
Lin Naoi was baffled, asking him what had led him to ask; but Chu Feng did not answer. He abruptly hung up the call.
Meanwhile, Wan Qing left the mansion, heading for Lin Naoi's hotel.
"Has Chu Feng called you before?" Lin Naoi asked beside a French window. She was looking at the distance while her jade-like skin shone under the glittering rays of the late morning sun.
"Oh, yes, of course. After he knew that it was not you, we ended the call just after a few light exchanges of words," Wan Qing replied in a tone that made her sound rather at ease. Indeed, there was no more troubles back at home after the incident that resulted in the seemingly accidental death of Chu Feng. Wan Qing was still enjoying her ease of mind.
"Really? Is there anything you're hiding away from me?" Lin Naoi turned around. She had a beautiful hair. It hung loosely on the sides of her swan-like and snow-white shoulders. A slightly frosty look on her fine and delicate face coupled with her cold yet exquisite eyes exerted quite a degree of pressure on Wan Qing.
"No. Of course not, my mistress." Wan Qing showed an astonished look.
"Based on my knowledge of Chu Feng's personality, there must have been something going wrong between you two," Lin Naoi said.
"Has he arrived already? What did he say to you? It would be so petty of him to have complained anything about my manners. I was just being a bit inconsiderate in my choice of words, but I really didn't mean it," Wan Qing spoke in a careless way. She knew that the man would never arrive nor would he ever complain anything to her mistress about her.
"No, he hasn't arrived yet, but based on the call he made to me just now, it sounded more than just some complaints about your deep-rooted prejudices against him." Lin Naoi stared at her.
"Just now?!" Wan Qing was taken aback. The quivering of her fingers almost cost her to drop the teacup in her hand, but she managed to cover up her emotion immediately.
The smile on Lin Naoi's face turned colder. "Tell me."
"What? No. There's hardly anything between us two," Wan Qing silently told herself to stay calm and collected, but in her mind, her fear and terror had almost reached a boiling point. How come that man was still not dead yet?
What on earth had happened. She felt ever so frightened. Was she going to face him now?
Her heart trembled as her mind shivered in fright. Many ideas and theories cropped up in her mind. "What if he really was alive? What was she going to do?"
She could feel chill running through her spine; then, the chilling turned to numbness, paralyzing her whole body.
She was like a frightened dog who wanted to flee from its master's punishing hands, but under her mistress' gaze, how could she?
"Chu Feng will arrive in a minute," Lin Naoi said. In fact, Chu Feng had not told her when he would arrive. She was not even sure if he would arrive at their appointment, because she could feel the fury behind his words during that brief call.
The moment she was informed of Chu Feng's imminent arrival, Wan Qing could feel her whole body coming out in a cold sweat. She had to stay, since there was no way for escape. For her, the minutes before Chu Feng's arrival was going to be a prolonged period of insufferable torment and wretchedness.
Fear started to overcome her senses. She knew that nothing would stay hidden once the truth was told. Even if she could still stay relatively safe under her sister's wing, she would need to pay a hefty price.