Chapter 71: That Moment Between Life and Death

Demoness's Art of Vengeance

Just as Jun Xiaomo operated her true energy instinctively, intending to duke it out with the Green Elder Python, a sharp sound of grating metal sliced through the air – Ye Xiuwen had unsheathed his Frostburn Sword and stabbed it straight into the area between the Green Elder Python’s fangs. A deep gash appeared in the Green Elder Python’s upper jaw.

However, this small wound was nothing much to the Green Elder Python at all. In fact, the stench of its own blood, coupled by the thick presence of Frenzypani Grass in the air agitated the Green Elder Python even more! The redness of its eyes grew two shades darker, and it turned its attention from Jun Xiaomo to Ye Xiuwen and lunged towards him!

The Green Elder Python’s movements were extremely quick, and it could travel a few hundred meters in just a few moments. This was the reason why Ye Xiuwen had not discovered its presence right at the outset. Right now, if any other cultivator at the twelfth level of Qi Mastery with a different spiritual-root were in Ye Xiuwen’s place, he would immediately have lost its life to the Green Elder Python. But Ye Xiuwen was a sword cultivator with a wind-based spiritual root. He immediately imbued his hands and feet with wind energy and increased his speed by a few folds. Armed with the formidable treasure, Frostburn Sword, the Green Elder Python was unable to immediately overpower Ye Xiuwen.

At this moment, Ye Xiuwen and the Green Elder Python had become like two shadows that were flashing about and clashing together at times. From time to time, their clashes would even release a wave of chilling sword intent about them.

But Jun Xiaomo did not have the time to appreciate how this battle was panning out. She knew that it was going to be difficult for the present Ye Xiuwen at the twelfth level of Qi Mastery matched with the Green Elder Python. It must be said that apart from the Green Elder Python’s immense speed, it even had a thick layer of scale around its body that acted like armor, and this scale was completely impenetrable unless one had weapons of a certain grade.

Even though Ye Xiuwen’s Frostburn Sword was able to unleash ice-based attacks and it could slow down the Green Elder Python’s speed, but the Frostburn Sword were only at the third-grade – there was only a very low possibility of penetrating the Green Elder Python’s scales at its current level.

Therefore, having been locked in combat for some time, the Green Elder Python managed to come out on top of their clashes with only minor scratches on its body, and the worst injury it sustained had been the very first stab Ye Xiuwen had made between the python’s fangs!

On the other hand, it was quickly becoming a concern how Ye Xiuwen’s speed was gradually slowing down. After all, how could the amount of spiritual energy in Ye Xiuwen’s body be compared with the wealth of spiritual energy possessed by these spirit beasts which were able to cultivate from the moment they were born? Therefore, the more drawn out this combat was, the more it was disadvantageous to Ye Xiuwen.

But faced with such agile and swift spirit beasts like the Green Elder Python, Jun Xiaomo knew that she was unable to put to use any of her knowledge pertaining to formation arrays or talismans. Formation arrays were predicated on capturing its targets in the array’s area of effect. However, the Green Elder Python was too fast, and it was highly possible that it would slip out of the array’s area of effect before the array fully activates. Worse, the array might even end up injuring Ye Xiuwen inadvertently.

On the other hand, the usage of talismans was dependent on its user’s aim and accuracy. Otherwise, if one tossed out talismans recklessly, not only would one be unable to hit his target, he might even injure his own allies.

If Jun Xiaomo’s cultivation were a little bit higher so that she could track the Green Elder Python’s movements, then she might possibly be able to use the various talismans in her possession to aid Ye Xiuwen and deal with the Green Elder Python. However, it was a pity that Jun Xiaomo’s cultivation right now was only at the first level of Qi Mastery.

Once again, Jun Xiaomo found it tragic that her present cultivation technique made it so difficult for her to improve her cultivation level.

As the combat wore on, Ye Xiuwen finally slipped up for the first time. The Green Elder Python immediately recognized its opportunity and bit down hard on Ye Xiuwen’s arm, puncturing a deep wound from which crimson red blood flowed. Ye Xiuwen gritted his teeth and fought through the pain as he stabbed at the Green Elder Python’s upper jaw again, causing the Green Elder Python to let go of Ye Xiuwen’s arm in pain.

It was a fortunate thing that the Green Elder Python had only managed to bite down on Ye Xiuwen’s left arm, while Ye Xiuwen’s sword-bearing arm was his right arm. Otherwise, there was no way that Ye Xiuwen would be able to free himself from the Green Elder Python’s bite so easily.

But even so, this wound still affected Ye Xiuwen’s offensive and defensive capabilities. The poison from the Green Elder Python had corrosive and paralyzing effects. Therefore, the pain in Ye Xiuwen’s left arm only grew more painful over time, and his body’s movements grew more and more sluggish.

Martial brother! Jun Xiaomo nearly called out as she bit down on her lower lips. Ye Xiuwen’s injury was the final straw that broke the camel’s back!

This cannot do! I cannot stand idly by the side and not do a thing anymore! Even if it meant pushing myself to the limits, I cannot let martial brother die before my very eyes while protecting me again!

As Jun Xiaomo retrieved a talisman from her Interspatial Ring and took aim at the Green Elder Python, the little packrat on her body suddenly moved, and a small, furry white head suddenly jumped out, looked at her and squeaked twice.

“Packie!” Jun Xiaomo did not think that the little packrat would suddenly jump out like that, and she could not help but holler at it anxiously and in anger.

It must be said that the woods were not lacking in creatures with strong offensive abilities, including creatures that were the natural enemies of packrats. Therefore, Jun Xiaomo thought that her little packrat’s actions right now only served to add to the present chaos!

Squeak squeak squeak! The little packrat scampered forward a few steps, before turning around and looking at Jun Xiaomo with another two squeaks. Then, it scampered forward a few steps again, and then looked at Jun Xiaomo and squeaked again.

“You want me to follow you?” Jun Xiaomo was stunned. She felt that this possibility was rather low, but the little packrat’s actions right now clearly signified that intention.

Squeak squeak! The little packrat lifted its head and squeaked twice again, staring at Jun Xiaomo with its two black beady eyes with a determined look.

It suddenly crossed Jun Xiaomo’s mind that the little packrat was becoming more and more mysterious to her. But now was not the time to delve into these matters. Since the little packrat was so determined, she would trust in the little packrat just this once.

“Brother Ye, follow me quickly!” Jun Xiaomo yelled at Ye Xiuwen as he continued to be locked in combat with the Green Elder Python. This exclamation not only attracted Ye Xiuwen’s attention; it even caused the Green Elder Python to pause in its movements momentarily.

It momentarily cocked its head and shifted its bloodshot eyes to look at Jun Xiaomo – and this look that gave Jun Xiaomo the opportunity she needed!

Jun Xiaomo rushed forward as she recited the mnemonic to convert the true energy in her body to spirit energy and flicked out two Thunderbolt Talismans.

Under the guidance of her spirit energy, the two Thunderbolt Talismans struck the Green Elder Python directly in its eyes. Then, Jun Xiaomo activated the spirit energy on the Thunderbolt Talismans, and they immediately exploded. The sound of two loud thunderbolts rang out through the woods, and the Green Elder Python’s eyes had instantly become two large, bloody cavities.

“Cough cough…” Ye Xiuwen’s injuries were very severe, but he still managed to hang on. Jun Xiaomo held onto his wrist as she said, “Brother Ye, follow me quickly. My little packrat has found an escape method.”

Ye Xiuwen immediately stumbled over as Jun Xiaomo pulled his wrist. Jun Xiaomo turned back, and she only just realized that Ye Xiuwen’s garbs had been dyed completely red with his own blood.

It was like a re-creation of the memories of her past life – a deep fear penetrated her heart right now, and the rims of Jun Xiaomo’s eyes reddened as tears welled up quickly.

But now was not the time to be sad or sorrowful – the moment of danger had not passed! The Green Elder Python had only lost its vision, but it still possessed acute auditory senses. Once it recovered from its present shocked state, it would definitely speed towards Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen in pursuit!

Ye Xiuwen also knew this full well. Therefore, despite staggering about because of his blood loss, he still fought through the pain and told Jun Xiaomo, “I’m fine. Let’s go!”

Jun Xiaomo gritted her teeth, before placing Ye Xiuwen’s arm on her shoulder. Even though Ye Xiuwen was quite a bit taller than her, and this would slow down their movement, but Jun Xiaomo had only one goal on her mind right now – and that was to bring Ye Xiuwen away from this place safely!

The little packrat squeaked at them anxiously as it scampered ahead, while Jun Xiaomo supported Ye Xiuwen and hobbled after the little packrat. On the other side, the Green Elder Python that had just lost its vision was still under the frenzy-inducing effects of the Frenzypani Grass, and it was unable to determine the direction of its prey momentarily. Therefore, it hissed furiously and thrashed its massive body about furiously, levelling its surroundings to flat ground.

Within moments, several trees around the Green Elder Python were pulled up by the roots or broke in half. If these trees had landed on a person, how great would that impact be!

After a while, the Green Elder Python finally managed to get used to the pain in its eyes and the darkness around it. But at the same time, its auditory senses became even more acute – this was a very basic, primal reaction and adaptation for its own survival.

Within moments, the Green Elder Python cocked its head ferociously and slithered in the direction that Ye Xiuwen and Jun Xiaomo had headed for.

At the same time, the little packrat finally brought Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen to the destination it was headed for – it was a pitch-black cavern. The cavern’s entrance was not too large, and it could only fit a single person at any one time. The cavern was even surrounded by a unique type of plant that they had not seen earlier.

Of course, the little packrat had not known that there was going to be a cavern here. Its senses had told it that there was going to be a large field of Firescale Grass which was useful for repelling serpents. Incidentally, the little packrat had also just coincidentally discovered the existence of the cavern here. Because of its small size, the little packrat had almost fallen right through the entrance of the cavern on the ground. As soon as it discovered the cavern, its eyes gleamed brightly, and it turned around and squeaked at Jun Xiaomo immediately.

If Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen stayed on the outside, perhaps the frenzied Green Elder Python which had lost all rationality would ignore the existence of the Firescale Grass and relentlessly pursue them. But things were different with this cavern. The Green Elder Python’s body was as thick as three or four people combined, and there was no way it was going to be able to fit into the entrance to that cavern. At best, the Green Elder Python would circle around the cavern’s entrance for a little while, before retreating under the repelling effects of the Firescale Grass.

Jun Xiaomo had also considered this. But the cavern was completely pitch black, and no one could see exactly how far it stretched down or what exactly awaited them in the cavern. For all they knew, something even more dangerous might lurk below.

Even though her hesitation was only for a brief moment, the Green Elder Python had managed to catch up to them in this short amount of time. Using his divine sense, Ye Xiuwen was the first one to discover the Green Elder Python’s movement towards them. He quickly gave Jun Xiaomo a push, causing her to fall into the hole immediately, and she slid along a long narrow path down towards the bottom of the cavern!

“Brother Ye!” Jun Xiaomo could only see darkness ahead of her as she reflexively shouted for Ye Xiuwen. But the only thing she heard right now was the sound of her clothes scraping against the walls of the cave, as well as the echo of her voice from the bottom of the cavern.

Above the ground, Ye Xiuwen also heard Jun Xiaomo’s shout, but he had no time to respond to her. The Green Elder Python had charged over extremely quickly, covering the remaining tens of meters in the blink of an eye.

Ye Xiuwen gritted his teeth as he forcefully kept his consciousness, unsheathed his sword again and stabbed towards the Green Elder Python that was charging towards it right now!


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