Chapter 240: The Deadly Weakness
Translator: TYZ Editor: X
The night sky seemed to be covered with a black veil while the gloominess in the air resembled an insoluble black ink.
All of Central Pine City was empty. The streets were filled with ruins and rubble. A few undestroyed pumpkin lamps were giving off a dusky yellow light, shining upon the dilapidated city.
Two indistinct dark figures were walking through the ruins.
Yan Hai was walking ahead of the other figure. He had lived in Central Pine City for many years. Even though the city had fallen to ruin, he still knew his way around.
Ever since the day he'd refined the blood crystal that Tian Kuan had given him, he had successfully developed blood traces and become a legitimate blood elementalist. Tian Kuan also taught him a thing or two about [Shadowless], sharply increasing his fighting capabilities.
The unprecedented abundance of power in his body had imbued him with absolute confidence. Furthermore, he had Sir behind him to provide support.
He was walking erratically and the environment surrounding him was distorted. It was as if a thin layer of shadow had covered his surroundings, merging with the night scene and making it difficult for him to be seen clearly.
They walked and stopped, walked and stopped, avoiding the patrolling elementalists along their way.
They had arrived.
Yan Hai stopped in his tracks, raised his head, and looked at the towering perimeter walls. The wall was covered with various species of densely-packed plants. Other than the mayor's residence, this was the most intact place in all of Central Pine City: the casualty barrack.
Yan Hai made a hand-signal behind his back. He remained prudent as usual.
With the recent formation of the blood traces, his powers had gotten a lot stronger than before; however, the surviving elementalists in Central Pine City had also been strengthened. The A-1 unit and the Lightning Blade had gotten rather popular these days. The previous scene of numerous lightning bolts surging down from the sky had struck fear in him as well, so much so that he'd almost collapsed onto the ground. After that incident, he was filled with anxiety and worry. One careless mistake could cost him his life.
He was not the only who was worrying. Initially, Sir was nonchalant towards the elementalists in the city; however, he had now also become fearful of them.
However, Sir was truly someone who had lived through countless life-and-death battles. He'd identified Central Pine City's weakness with one glance.
If their plan was successful, the situation in Central Pine City would change immediately.
Yan Hai felt that the success rate of the plan was very high. When he thought of this, his heart burned with fervor.
The casualty barrack that was surrounded by towering walls was used to quarantine injured elementalists. A few thousand elementalists that had been infected by the blood poison were being locked up here. These infected elementalists gave the mayor a headache. Until now, he had yet to find a cure for the blood poison. He could not kill these inflicted elementalists or take a carefree attitude towards them. The only thing he could do was to quarantine them in order to prevent the blood poison from spreading.
There was no other way except to drag out the situation. Everyone could only hope that the Elders Guild would quickly find a cure to the blood poison.
The quarantine zone was heavily guarded; however, these walls were only used to keep the blood fiends out and prevent those severely inflicted elementalists within the facility from escaping. Central Pine City was low on manpower, hence, there was no extra manpower to guard the inflicted elementalists. To reduce the number of people taking care of the casualties, the casualty barrack was sealed off. The surrounding high walls and the thick, vine-made dome roof were used to cut off contact between the casualties and the outside world.
Surveillance plants and vines that could shackled the casualties were grown all over the casualty barrack. They were the most loyal sentinels. Once they discovered that an inflicted elementalist's condition had worsened and turned aggressive, the nearby vines would quickly bind him or her.
With the surveillance plants and the restricting vines placed in every corner of the facility, only three wood elementalists were needed to manage the place. Casualties who went crazy could only act on their instincts and did not know how to use their powers. As such, they were not difficult to deal with.
On the contrary, there were a lot of elementalists patrolling the surroundings of the casualty barrack. The higher-ups were worried that blood fiends would suddenly appear and damage the high walls surrounding it.
For the past few days, Yan Hai's mission had been to observe and study the patrol schedule of the patrolling unit clearly. Other than this, he did not need to care about anything else.
Two green pills appeared in Tian Kuan's hand. He ate one himself and passed the other one to Yan Hai. Under Tian Kuan's watchful eyes, Yan Hai ate the pill.
"Use your spiritual force to dissolve it," Tian Kuan instructed Yan Hai in a low voice.
Yan Hai quickly channeled the blood spiritual force in his body. He was shocked to discover that the red-colored blood spiritual force in his body had turned green in color. The blood aura that engulfed his body had disappeared and was replaced by the fresh and clean aura of plants.
Yan Hai was startled. The organization was indeed unfathomable!
They actually had such good stuff!
"You will lead the way," Tian Kuan instructed in a low voice once again.
A shiver ran down Yan Hai's spine. Not daring to hesitate any longer, he began to climb up the perimeter wall. The vine bells that could be found everywhere stayed quiet, looking as if they had fallen asleep.
Two dark figures silently climbed the high wall, then penetrated the thick, vine-made dome roof.
Yan Hai felt extremely amazed. Those highly dangerous and vigilant vines did not seem to have noticed them.
Sir must have prepared for them!
He could not help but become filled with expectations. What would Sir do next?
The loft where the three wood elementalists stood guard was located at the center of the casualty barrack. Thick, strong vines were packed in the areas surrounding the loft's windows. Being stationed at the highest point of the casualty barrack, the wood elementalists could monitor the wandering inflicted elementalists below. This position had the best view as they could clearly see everything in the courtyard of the facility.
The countless vines were drooping downward like keen-eyed venomous snakes, prepared to bind any casualties that lost control at any time.
Those elementalists who were inflicted with blood poison would show symptoms of beastification. As the blood poison got worse, the process of beastification would deepen. Eventually, those elementalists would lose control of themselves and turn into wild beasts.
Their lives would come to an end at that moment.
Everyday, someone's life was terminated. Initially, the three wood elementalists had felt depressed and disturbed. Eventually, they became numb to it.
What could they do about it? Human lives were just so insignificant in this blood catastrophe.
Outside of the perimeter walls, there were many people being killed by blood fiends everyday. Inside the perimeter walls, there were also many people being killed by them.
The harshest decisions were always made out of desperation.
Sun Ke watched on as a snake-like vine tied up a berserk elementalist while another pointed vine pierced through the back of his head like a sharp sword. The terrifying blood color in that elementalist's eyes gradually dimmed.
"We are probably the executioners among wood elementalists." Sun Ke laughed sarcastically at himself.
"We're doing this for their own good," mumbled Wang Tongan, who was beside him.
"I knew him personally. He was my neighbor and a good man." Sun Ke's tone got more sarcastic.
Wang Tongan did not know how to console him.
"You don't need to console me," Sun Ke muttered as he looked absent-mindedly at the courtyard. "I know what I'm doing. I just hope that this blood catastrophe will be over soon."
Wang Tongan felt that the atmosphere was getting tense and tried to change the topic. "What do you want to do after you get out of here?"
"Start on my training again." Sun Ke turned his face around and replied, "I don't want to be a wood elementalist anymore. In the past, I chose to be a wood elementalist because I didn't want to kill people. I didn't expect that I would end up killing even more people."
A shiver went down Wang Tongan's spine. Then, he patted Sun Ke's shoulder and said, "That's what I thought too. Do you want to take a rest?"
"You go and have a rest first, I will try to stay awake for a while more. Anyway, Xiaozheng will be waking up soon." Sun Ke's facial expression returned to normal. "Don't worry, I'm not that weak."
"Alright then, I will go and take a break first. Yell for us if there's any situation." Wang Tongan nodded his head.
"Go ahead, go ahead." Sun Ke waved his hand.
Wang Tongan went to take a nap, leaving Sun Ke alone to observe the situation below. Even though there were so many vines around, it was still very exhausting for the three of them to oversee the enormous casualty barrack by themselves.
They had tried asking the higher ups for more manpower, but their request had been rejected. There were a lot of casualties among the elementalists, causing a severe shortage of manpower. There was no way that the higher-ups could send reinforcements to the three of them.
Currently, everyone knew that there was no cure for blood poisoning. Hence, a lot of injured elementalists would choose to die together with the blood fiends. Eventually, the number of injured elementalists that were sent to the casualty barrack was reduced sharply, allowing the three wood elementalists to cope with the duty of overseeing the facility.
Sun Ke's attention was placed completely on the courtyard below, not noticing the danger that crept increasingly closer to him from above.
The mayor's residence.
Wang Zhen looked at Ai Hui. This was the first time Ai Hui had taken the initiative to come to the mayor's residence. Ai Hui had asked for details about the plan to 'treat the city as a piece of cloth', expressing his wish to help out in any possible way.
"Shouchuan has taken in a good disciple," Wang Zhen praised.
He was not saying this out of courtesy. His subordinates had long reported to him of Ai Hui's visit to Wang Shouchuan.
Wang Zhen's impression of Ai Hui was that the latter was a very capable and talented young man, although he was also a moody and melancholic individual. Rather than behaving like any of the usual youngsters, he behaved like an old veteran who had been through a lot. He was also not someone who liked to meddle in other people's business. Not only that, if one was to give him a task, he would haggle over the reward. He would only agree to the task until he felt that the reward was enough.
Wang Zhen was having a huge headache over this characteristic of Ai Hui.
The thing was that with Ai Hui's performance getting increasingly better and him gaining a reputation, Wang Zhen could not get tough with him.
Wang Zhen did not expect Ai Hui to take the initiative to offer his help. He knew that Ai Hui was doing it because of Wang Shouchuan; however, from this he could also tell that the relationship between Ai Hui and his master was very deep.
Ai Hui being willing to help was the best situation.
Shi Xueman, who was standing beside Ai Hui, could not help but take a glance at the latter. She now realized that there was actually so much inside information regarding Ai Hui.
"With your help, our rate of progress will increase," Wang Zhen said bluntly. "The golden needles are going to be completed soon. The next task is to nail the nine needles in specific positions. Those positions are the nodes for the elemental energy surrounding Central Pine City. Once these nodes are activated, the elemental energy surrounding all of Central Pine City will transform. That means that the moment we nail the first golden needle, the subsequent needles have to be nailed into their respective positions within a day's time."
"So the mayor wants to start nailing from the most difficult position?" Ai Hui asked.
A look of admiration appeared on Wang Zhen's face as he replied, "You're indeed a quick-witted fellow. That's right, we will start with the most difficult one and then move on to the easier ones. This way we will reduce the risk. Therefore, we must nail the first golden needle at the most difficult position."
"I'm willing to take up this mission." Ai Hui volunteered without any hesitation.
"The A-1 unit is willing to take up this mission." Shi Xueman volunteered without any hesitation as well.
"Alright, then I will give all of you the most difficult mission." Wang Zhen walked to the map of Central Pine City and pointed to a dot. "You have to nail the golden needle at this location. On the day itself, specialized smiths will be following your unit. You all have to ensure their safety as well as your own. If the situation gets critical, it's okay to delay the mission by one or two days. If you all are injured, then it will be too dangerous for us to nail the remaining eight needles as well."
Shi Xueman's gaze froze when she saw the point on the map.
That place was... Heaven Pit!
Ai Hui nodded his head emotionlessly and replied, "No problem."