Continuing along the road near the Great Lakes, the three headed North towards the forest.
In front of their eyes, the vastness of the forest seemed endless as they walked along the Lake. Finally, after two days of tough slogging, they have reached the northern shore.
Du-Wei took out the gift (map) given to him by Chairman Beinlich of the snow Wolf mercenary. Looking at the fragmented map, the Southern banks of the Great Lake is very detailed. Area’s where it is safe, and locations where more monster is infested is marked down in great lengths.
As for the northern lake shores, the marks were simple in comparison. Big chunks of white space on the map simply read “forest”, and the only forward direction mark was left behind by Chairman Beinlich. This was only possible after checking with a lot of previous records from other adventurer’s.
“Well, if we continue to head north, then I’d rather go along this road on the map.” Du-Wei opened up the map for the two of them to see. “Look, this is probably the only place in 200 years that someone has traveled along…… In this direction is the position we are now to the left…… And to the North, we will cross a secured safe zone. The map says this place has a relatively small amount of magical beasts. Then two days later, we will come to a Canyon, Oh, and the Canyon has no name, but it says very clearly that there is danger with high possibility of advanced magical beasts appearing. Further north of this area is completely unknown.”
Dadaneier looked at the map carefully; while Hussein’s face acted like it does not matter.
“My companions, where should we go from here?” Du-Wei said with a smile. “Based on the map markings, should we take the canyon route or should we just aimless head north?”
At the time of saying this, Du-Wei kept part of his attention on Hussein. He felt that the old magician must have a purpose traveling through the forest, and this holy night, the traitor of the holy temple must know their destination. Until now, they wouldn’t say where, but at this point, they should tell him.
But Du-Wei was disappointed by Hussein’s indifferent facial expression. Speaking lightly, “Whatever, just head North, as to which way to go, you deciding is fine.”
“Go to the Canyon.” Dadaneier pondered the question for a moment, then put forward his own proposal: “No one has been to the other places, who know what those places have. Only the Canyon was traveled through before, though the information left behind is not much, but at least we can prepare for it.”
“All right then, it’s decided.” Du-Wei picked up and put away the map. Laughing as he spoke, “We set off towards the Canyon!”
Du-Wei had a very indifferent look just like the knight, after all, being accompanied by the continents strongest knight, as well as the super sorcerer following behind. Even if he encounters any danger, there shouldn’t be any problem. That thought kept his feelings at ease.
Across the Great Lakes to the North, the weather’s been so cold that a normal person can no longer withstand it. It can be said, if Du-Wei still had his previous constitution, he would have already frozen to death on the road. But luckily every day, Hussein would teach him a new set of action and this is just enough to withstand the cold.
As for Hussein, he had no fear of the cold because he just had to increase his Dou Qi.
Instead, it was Dadaneier that seemed to be unable to support himself. Although he was a strong warrior, his strength was only at a third level warrior.
As they headed into the forest, the weather was very strange with no wind in the area and only silence welcomed them. The thick snow under their feet is enough to cause their mind to go numb in this situation.
Sometimes, if they take a misstep into a snow pit, the depth of the snow is enough to bury a person up to the waist!
Also, the snow is not only very thick, but also very hard! These past two days, when they dig into the ground to set up a tent, it was so thick that they couldn’t see soil. And several times, what they found instead was a layer of thick ice.
“Damn it man….. I suspect there is no soil in the ground, but actually a giant piece of ice! Then how do the trees around here grow? Can trees grow on ice?” Dadaneier sighed.
Du-Wei frowned, then he whispered, “Did you feel it? Ever since we left the Lake and traveled into the Woods, I always felt a strange illusion. It’s too quiet, almost without sound, but I seem to feel like we’re being spied upon at all times…… Do you have this feeling?”
Dadaneier shook his head, implying no. Hussein only smiled for a second before glancing at Du-Wei, “Oh, really, you also feel that?”
Du-Wei had relied on his huge mental powers and keen senses. As for the Knight, it was because of his transcendent powers. But Dadaneier was only a mid-level warrior; his strength was relatively low and his telepathic abilities aren’t strong either.
“Could it be that we are being targeted by a magical beast?” Du-Wei frowned.
“Maybe not a, but rather a group of.” Hussein spoke in a light tone, “What the heck! They better not appear, if they do appear, then we would have a few more dinners.” (No comment….)
Du-Wei has no doubt in the knight’s word.
In fact, along the process of traveling through this road that ran along the big Lake, they have already more than once encountered magical beasts.
In this snow covered land, where food is scarce, high level magical beasts and bloodthirsty monsters would desperately try to prey upon them. Even at night, Du-Wei would sprinkle dragon droppings around the camp, but it showed little effect as a deterrent.
The magical beasts here seemed to have higher intelligence because dragon feces are not enough to scare them away. Even though they do not dare to directly attack, some would still attempt to try.
On a previous night, three earth dragons dug out from under the tent to attack them. The earth dragons are not really dragons, but rather looked like pangolins from Du-Wei’s past life. Even these kind of problems can cause quite a headache for them!
The beasts could freely dig through the frozen ground that was as hard as iron, and their speed is fast! These things are draped in a hard layer of scale and as to how hard is it really? You can ask Dadaneier this question. In the night attack, the third level warrior Dadaneier used his blade to hack against the back of the earth dragon, the resulting impact force only caused the body of the earth dragon to shake a bit. As for the blade Dadaneier was holding, it broke and shattered into two pieces.
The earth dragon has an unusual defense and their claws and teeth are even worse, easily able to bite apart hard metals! They relied heavily on their claws and teeth to tunnel under the frozen soil.
Even though they are small creatures, they are capable of astonishing speed and are almost bullet proof. If somehow they are able to catch or bite you, then you might lose your life.
If the team didn’t have such a strong person like Hussein, Du-Wei wouldn’t doubt that he and Dadaneier would have been finished.
During that event when Dadaneier used his blade to hack against the body of the earth dragon, his sword broke while the earth dragon just shrugged it off. Then it latched onto Dadaneier’s body and used its claws to pierce right through the leather armor and even into the shoulder bones.
It was at that moment. Hussein, the continents strongest knight made his move. Using a broken sword, his one strike was enshrouded in a subtle Golden flame. The Dou Qi of this pale golden light was extremely bright in the night. In such a light, the three earth dragon had their heads severed and dismembered into six pieces!
That night, the three enjoyed an earth dragon barbecue.
After breaking apart the hard scales of the earth dragon, their meat was also tough and impossible to chew, but their guts were very tasty and delicious.
Hussein even stripped down the body scales of the three earth dragons and stored them into a heavy bag. Turning to Du-Wei as he spoke, “Take these things to make armor, they are very light in weight and is better than metal as a material. It should be very good.”
The Knight even ripped out the tendons of three earth dragon. The tendons are extremely tough and elastic, by replacing Dadaneier’s bow string with the tendon, it would be several times better than a bow with an iron string.
Dadaneier no longer held any hate towards Hussein. Although Hussein almost killed him, the Knight not only saved his life, but also got him a good bow. No matter how you look at it, he owed the knight.
Hussein still carried a cold look and didn’t talk too much. When nothing is happening, he would cross his arms and closed his eyes to meditate.
Dadaneier was embarrassed and didn’t have the nerve to talk with Hussein. But Du-Wei didn’t care because he was full of questions and only the knight can give him the answers.
“Hey,” Du-Wei went over to sit beside Hussein. “How’s your wound? I still have a little bit of ice berry.”
Hussain raised his head to look at Du-Wei. “Thanks, but no thanks. Eating too much of that stuff will get me addicted. Also, the last time I had the ice berries, I said something I shouldn’t have. I can endure it now so I don’t need these things.”
Du-Wei smiled as he whispered, “I noticed your Dou QI was a golden color. I heard that only the Saint Paladin’s Dou Qi were golden color. You are the strongest knight in a century and the closest to being a Saint Paladin. Now looking at the color of your Dou QI…… Could you now be a Saint Paladin?”
Hussein raised an eyebrow and with a faint smile, “Saint Paladin…… If I am already a Saint Paladin, then I wouldn’t have so many injuries.”
“You’re not a Saint Paladin?” Du-Wei was surprised. Relying on one’s own power, he killed two of his own peers that were also ninth level knights. On top of that, he also killed a presiding judgment lord of the temple, whom is also a top magician. Though Du-Wei didn’t know what level the presiding judge was at, but thinking about, it has to be at least eighth level and higher. Lastly, there was also the eighth level holy knight and a bunch of intermediate knights….
Hussein has such terrifying strength, yet he still couldn’t reach the level of a Saint Paladin?
“At this moment, I am still at the ninth level.” Hussein sighed, “I feel that I’m about to have a critical break through, but always a step short…… This step is clearly in front of me, but even I don’t know how to exceed this barrier. Maybe it will be today; maybe never in this lifetime, only god knows when.”
Du-Wei took a deep breath before speaking, “Then what is a Saint Paladin?”
“I don’t know.” Hussein shakes his head with confusion in his eyes. “But what I do know is that before reaching Saint Class, there is a great divide between the ordinary levels. Between ordinary knights of eighth and ninth level, even if the strength varies, it is possible to win against a higher level knight by challenging a ninth level knight with a few other eighth level knights. According to legend, once you get to the Saint Class level, even if you gather a lot of ninth level knights, the group would never be able to overcome the Saint Paladin. The difference is only one level, but this last level represents a divide so great that most are unable to cross!”
“……” Du-Wei did not say what he was thinking.
“Sometimes, I feel I’m already very strong.” Hussein showed a wry smile, “When battling Lord Luke and the other holy knight leader, my strength was stronger than they were but I can only handle their joint attacks before reaching my limit. If I was a Saint Paladin….” Hussein shakes his head before closing his mouth.
Seeing Hussein didn’t want to continue the conversation. Du-Wei can only sigh and shake his head before going over to help tend the fire with Dadaneier.
The next afternoon, they finally closed in on to the last marked location on the map, “Canyon”.
In fact, the topography of the place is very simple. Crossing in front is two slopes; the top revealed a yellowish granite rock covered with ice and snow. Between the two slopes is a fracture indicating to what the map called the “Canyon”.
The three men went to the entrance of the Canyon, but kept their silence because on both sides, as if deliberately left there, stood two stone sculptures!
On the left is a human Knight, approximately the size of an ordinary person. This stone sculpture was finely carved at the grand master level of engraving! The Knight’s sword was still waving with an angry facial expression, almost lifelike! The body armor looked somewhat broken, but even the broken gaps were carved with a high degree of detail.
Gently wiping away a layer of snow, exposed the Knight’s armor. Even the patterns are exquisite and clear!!
Du-Wei’s face suddenly changed as he observed the overly life like statue.
“These…… stone statues are not carved! They are real people, only petrified!”
Very quickly, Du-Wei and Dadaneier looked at each other before uttering a word at the same time!
“Golden eye Python!”
Hussein masked a somber face, then suddenly pulled out a sword. Frowning, he whispered. “Hey! I feel that hateful feeling again! There is something secretly peeking at us! Like…… Right here!”
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