The sky had turned bright. The terrain had also become more open as the mountains on both sides gradually spread out. Weeds could be seen on the ground that should have been barren. Wuya, who was wearing a pair of hemp shoes, led the way. Along the way, he did not say a single word, and he also seemed to ignore the hostile glares of Diane.
Rody looked worried as he followed Wuya. Diane was injured and she looked pale. She also still had some bloodstains at the corner of her mouth. Rody frowned and could only pull her along.
The faint sound of rushing water could be heard ahead. Rody and Diane were both surprised when they heard the sound. The two of them had experienced all sorts of dangers since last night and felt bitter.
The ground had started to level out. The surface of the ground was also no longer covered with hard stones. The soft soil was easier to walk on. They followed down the path and found a small river. The river did not look deep and some exposed boulders could be seen on the water surface. The river was washing over the smooth stones, making a gushing sound. The river was not wide. It looked more like a small stream.
Diane could not help but exclaim happily. She walked faster and wanted to move ahead. However, Rody felt that something was strange and stopped her. “Wait! Look!”
They saw that Wuya, who was in front, was standing several meters away from the small river. His hands, which were originally clasped behind him, were now at his sides.
“Something is wrong,” Rody whispered. Diane’s face turned red when Rody pulled her hand. She struggled a bit for Rody to release her hand as she asked, “What is wrong?”
Wuya took a deep breath and then slowly opened his hands and mumbled something.
Suddenly, the ground started to tremble. Diane was not prepared for it and almost fell down. Cracks formed on the ground at Wuya’s feet. As the quakes continued, the cracks extended further to the front. The cracks became larger as the quakes became stronger.
During the earthquake, the current of that small river also vibrated. The originally calm river was now surging forth. The water was rapid. As the earthquakes continued, bubbles appeared in the river as if the water was boiling.
After that, a rumbling roar could be heard and the river water suddenly exploded. Water splashed everywhere. Numerous flopping sounds could be heard as small silver things jumped out of the river. After that, numerous palm-sized fish fell on the river bank. The fish had silver scales. When they fell on the ground, they did not die immediately and kept flopping on the ground.
Wuya lowered his hands and the earthquake gradually stopped. The cracks in the earth also slowly closed up. However, the air still felt moist after the incident at the river.
“Let’s cross the river now! Just be careful of the fish!” Wuya said and continued to walk forth with his hands behind him.
Rody and Diane looked at each other in shock. Just how powerful is Wuya?
Coughing a little, Rody and Diane continued to follow Wuya towards the river.
Wuya had already stepped into the shallow river. The water reached up to his calf, wetting the lower part of his clothing.
As Rody walked, he curiously looked at those small fish that were still flopping on the ground. Rody was surprised and unprepared when one of the struggling fish suddenly jumped up. It opened its mouth in midair and shot a pallid light towards Rody’s forehead.
Rody ducked and stretched out both of his arms, trying to catch the fish with his fingers. However, the fish fell to the ground, and its body immediately turned into a silver liquid.
Rody was horrified when he saw that he had caught a needle that was half as long as his fingers. The needle gleamed coldly like metal. It was incredible how that fish could spit out that kind of thing.
Wuya said suddenly, “Be careful. If you were hit by that needle, you would become a fish!”
Those words made Rody burst into a cold sweat, and he immediately threw away the needle. He quickly caught up with Wuya, walking in large strides. Diane felt weak in her knees, but she dared not slow down. She followed closely behind Rody.
The river was not as shallow as it looked. Rody pulled Diane along as they crossed the river. Their shoes were soaked and their feet felt slippery and uncomfortable. However, knowing that the river was home to those terrifying little fish, they did not dare to linger.
However, Wuya was not worried and lightly told Rody, “You do not need to worry at the moment. The sorcery I just used has made all the fish come out of the water. It would be a while before the fish from the upper stream start to gather here again.”
Rody could not help but ask in a soft voice, “Earlier, you said that if a person was hit by the needle, he would become a fish in the river… does that mean that these fish were originally…”
“They were originally people,” Wuya answered calmly. However, it was his next few sentences that made Rody turn cold. “These hundreds of years, there were countless people who yearned for the secrets of this valley. The world is big and there are many strong people. Did you think that the spiders in the canyon can stop them all?”
When Wuya saw that Rody did not speak, he continued, “Even during the era of Abbas the Great, tens of thousands of people were dispatched on an expedition to find the legendary ‘Summit of Evil’. It was not known as to where Abbas the Great obtained the information that there was a magical artifact in there. As a result, almost half of the tens of thousands of expeditionary army died in the mountain while most of the other half were killed by the spiders. The rest all turned into fish when they crossed this river! In fact, it is not only the people of the Empire that attempted this. There were also many mountain warriors who took this risk. The result was that none of them survived! Just look at his river. Nobody knows how many ghosts still linger here…”
Diane trembled as she heard that. She could not help but loudly reply, “I don’t believe it! How big is this river? If it was according to what you said, wouldn’t this river have tens of thousands of fish? How can such a small river have so many fish?”
Wuya suddenly laughed and lightly replied, “Little girl of the Silvermoon Clan, you have a point. Didn’t your clan have a record of the ‘Samsara River’? When a fish kills a person, it will become river water. The person who is killed will then become a fish until it kills another person. After that, the fish will become river water again. A fish for a fish…A person for a person and a life for a life. This is the cycle!”
Wuya sounded cold and foreboding. Diane trembled and said, “Then… just now… you killed countless people!”
Wuya shook his head and replied, “I only helped them to reincarnate.”
“We are going ashore now. Be careful!” Wuya whispered and no longer spoke as he took the first step on the other side of the river.
Rody pulled Diane and once again stepped on solid ground. He had a strange feeling. The moment he crossed the ‘Samsara River’, he felt that he had finally survived a disaster and was grateful that he was given a new lease of life.
Suddenly, Rody heard a buzzing sound and the scene in front of him changed. It seemed like the whole space was transformed. The empty space in front of him was torn open.
After that, Rody saw a huge and extremely dense forest in front of him. In the strange forest, there were dense trees with twisting vine, and there were countless weeds on the ground, about half the height of a person.
The howling of some unidentified wild beasts and chirping of birds could be heard in the forest. Those sounds, together, made the surroundings seem much livelier compared to earlier. Rody felt like he had just stepped into another world.
“What… What is going on?” Rody’s mouth opened for a moment before asking.
Diane had a complicated expression. Her eyes flashed and she did not know whether to be happy or afraid. She then murmured, “This… Is this the legendary ‘Forest of Death’?” Diane shivered and could not help but lean against Rody.
Wuya no longer showed an indifferent expression. He took a deep breath before saying in a low voice, “Well, I have finally reached here, again!” He then looked at the sky. His facial expression changed and then murmured, “I need to be fast. I only have half a day left…”
Wuya’s words were so soft that only he himself could hear. However, his tone of voice still sounded dignified…
Rody was shocked when Wuya slowly turned around. Wuya’s expression was no longer indifferent; instead, it had a hint of excitement.
“Both of you, welcome to the entrance of the ‘Summit of Evil’. From here onwards, you will have to rely on yourself for your own safety. I cannot protect you anymore. Hopefully, God will bless and protect the three of us so that we can get out of here alive.”
As Wuya slowly said those words, he struggled to show a small smile. However, the smile seemed strained.