Qin Lie and Song Tingyu hid deeper within the tree’s foliage and looked down at the Horned Demon town close by.
Song Tingyu’s shoulders shuddered slightly, a cold expression on her face. Her body emanated a terrible killing intent. “We may not even compare to nether beasts in the eyes of the Nether Realm’s evil races. If they get their hands on us, our fates will be worse than death!”
Sadness shimmered in Song Tingyu’s eyes as she watched the captive human girls and imagined their horrible fate.
Qin Lie said nothing, his face grim. He finally realized what kind of horrible fate would await everyone on the Scarlet Tide Continent if their martial practitioners lost the war against the evil races of the Nether Realm.
It would probably be exactly as Song Tingyu said—a fate worse than death!
He had learned the life experiences of several Horned Demon martial practitioners, and before he formed his Soul Lake, his mind had been shaken and he once thought of himself as a clansman of the Horned Demon Race.
From the perspective of the Horned Demon Race, he felt sympathy in his heart and thought that there was nothing wrong with the Horned Demon Race wanting to attack Scarlet Tide Continent.
However, it was only when he saw the circumstances of the human captives that he finally understood what would happen to his friends and acquaintances if Scarlet Tide Continent ever fell into the hands of the evil races of the Nether Realm.
“That day will never come!” Qin Lie suddenly exclaimed.
“The evil races have already entered the Scarlet Tide Continent…” Song Tingyu sighed deeply.
“Then we shall kill them all! We will force them back to the Nether Realm and permanently seal all the paths to the Scarlet Tide Continent!”
Song Tingyu’s eyes lit up slightly as she looked deeply at him. “There are actually a lot of things that we can do right now.”
“Like what?” Qin Lie turned his head and asked.
“While their elites are in the Scarlet Tide Continent, we can siege and kill the Horned Demons in the Nether Realm. With your Terminator Profound Bombs we can find bigger cities, go to their fortresses, ruin their equipment and supplies, kill their young beasts, destroy their food…” Song Tingyu’s eyes flashed with coldness and she gradually grew more and more excited as she spoke. “With the Terminator Profound Bombs we can do a lot of things! I suddenly realize that you and I may be able to do a lot more here in Nether Realm than we would outside!”
Qin Lie’s eyes also lit up as he said with excitement, “I still have a lot of Terminator Profound Bombs with me!”
“Excellent!” Song Tingyu grew more excited as well.
It was at this moment a Horned Demon martial practitioner inside the city killed a human with a single stab.
Qin Lie and Song Tingyu’s faces went cold again as they returned to watching the Horned Demon town. They realized that, while they were talking, the Horned Demon clansmen had rounded up dozens of human in the small plaza with the upright stone slabs.
Fresh blood gushed out of the stomach of the human who had just been killed. A Horned Demon martial practitioner lifted a wooden pail and gathered the fresh blood that poured out of his stomach.
Another human girl was beheaded while her hair was grabbed, and the fresh blood spraying out of her neck splashed against the many stone slabs.
This seemed to be a kind of priest’s ritual in preparation for war. The Horned Demons were offering fresh human blood to the demon gods they worshipped, asking for protection and a great victory. They also seemed to be wishing for acquire some kind of blessing from the demon gods.
Qin Lie’s expression was dark. A murderous intent suddenly gathered in his heart as he watched the Horned Demon clansman who killed the two human slaves.
The two murdered human slaves had shown no resistance whatsoever. The human who had been stabbed even let out a relieved expression—it was as if he had wanted to die a long time ago.
The dead eyes of the rest of the human slaves actually shone with expectation. They seemed to be wishing for their own deaths as well.
“They were originally powerful martial practitioners! They were captured alive by these evil races when they fought them in the Nether Battlefield. How were they reduced to this miserable state?” Song Tingyu suddenly screamed, her usually calm demeanor forgotten as she lost a bit of her control.
Before Qin Lie could react, she pulled his hand, flapped her rainbow wings and actually flew straight out of the tree’s foliage, heading towards the Horned Demon town like a beam of light.
“Qin Lie! Show no mercy!” Song Tingyu exclaimed through clenched teeth.
“Alright!” Qin Lie took out a Terminator Profound Bomb, aimed at the Horned Demon men at the perimeter of the ritual, and threw it.
The Terminator Profound Bomb flashed with deep green electricity, letting out an intense, thunderous energy. Like a meteor, it crashed at the center of the dozens of Horned Demon men.
An earthshaking explosion erupted forth, immediately followed by a terrifying tidal wave of force.
The houses built from bone and wood shattered instantly. Amidst the shards of bone and splintered wood, the painful cries of the Horned Demon men resounded instantly.
Many bloodied corpses were scattered around the center of the blast site. The few lucky survivors howling on top of their lungs had their throats cut by Song Tingyu’s sharp sword just as they entered the blast site’s perimeter.
Rays of colorful rainbow light crisscrossed and decapitated the many Horned Demon clansmen into tiny bits of flesh.
“Into the plaza!” Song Tingyu charged straight for the plaza, her figure dancing lithely.
Qin Lie followed her closely from behind.
All of the Horned Demon warriors in the entire town howled madly at the skies when they heard the explosion and rushed over from all directions.
“Qin Lie! Blast the place that has the most people!” Song Tingyu shouted.
“Alright!” Qin Lie took out another three Terminator Profound Bombs and threw one out at the Horned Demon warriors charging towards him.
“Boom! Boom! Boom!”
The entire town shook as if a tremendous earthquake was in progress, causing many houses to crumble to pieces.
One deep pit after another abruptly opened up in this small town. Every one of these deep pits had many bloody corpses in them.
There weren’t many Horned Demon warriors in this town in the first place, and their ranks were obviously somewhat low as well. Most of them had only two or three horns and, after four Terminator Profound Bombs had exploded, almost all the warriors in this town were dead.
There were only some women, elderly, weak, and sick Horned Demon clansmen who had no combat capabilities left at the edges of the town. They did not dare to get closer and only stared at Qin Lie and Song Tingyu with extreme hate.
After gazing for a while and realizing that the only fate waiting for them here was death, they quickly escaped.
In just a few minutes, there was no longer a single living Horned Demon clansman in the entire town. The few Horned Demon warriors who had killed the two human slaves at the plaza had also been killed by Song Tingyu’s earlier charge.
After looking at his surroundings and confirming that there were no longer any Horned Demon warriors in sight, only then Qin Lie turned around and moved to the plaza.
There were still dozens of human captives left in the plaza. A trace of light flashed across their dead eyes. They shivered and pulled pieces of beast skin and cloth from the Horned Demon corpses to cover up their bodies.
“I belong to Profound Heaven Alliance. You… when were you imprisoned in the Nether Realm?” Song Tingyu watched their terrible appearance and felt unbelievably sad.
“I am a martial practitioner from Cloud Sky Mountain. I was originally at the middle stage of the Manifestation Realm. Fifteen years ago, during the great war at the Nether Battlefield, I was knocked out and imprisoned by a Horned Demon clansman after we had been defeated.” A person answered.
“I am a martial practitioner from Dark Asura Hall. I used to be at the early stage of the Netherpassage Realm. I was a commander. Twenty years ago, I was given a mission to scout the movements of evil races in the levels beneath the Nether Battlefield. I was caught unaware…” Another person answered.
“I am a martial practitioner from the Blue Feather Association. I was also in the Manifestation Realm. While I was hunting a Nether Giant Tail Lizard on the Nether Battlefield, I ran into a Horned Demon warrior and was dealt a grievous injury. I was captured alive.” A woman clad in green and purple said sadly.
These people softly talked about their experiences with lowered heads. Once they were finished, they all fell into silence.
While they were on the Scarlet Tide Continent, they were once the elites of various forces. Even the weakest of them were at the early stage of the Manifestation Realm. They had all participated in countless bloody battles on the Nether Battlefield and fought against many nether beasts and evil races.
However, they were tragically captured and imprisoned in the Nether Realm since, hence experiencing the darkest moment in their entire lives.
When they recalled their former lives, their hearts bled.
“We can take you back to the Scarlet Tide Continent!” Qin Lie exclaimed.
“No, we can’t… and we won’t return either.” The woman said with her head bowed. Without looking at Qin Lie and Song Tingyu’s expressions, she spoke quietly. “Our bodies were infested with a kind of boring insect that prevents us from even committing suicide. The moment we have such thoughts, these parasites will activate and paralyze our bodies, making us unable to even lift a finger.”
Qin Lie recalled the way they collapsed while walking and suddenly realized that they had planned to killed themselves at that point. Yet their intentions were discovered by the borers and they were subjected to intense pain that caused them to writhe in terrible pain.
“Without the world’s spirit energy to cultivate, without spirit stones to replenish our spirit seas, our bodies and hearts were corrupted by nether demonic energy long ago. The fact that our blood has been consumed by demonic beasts, that we have parasites in our bodies, all the things that have happened… we cannot live with such a past. It is impossible for us to go back. We only want release.” A person said softly.
“Release is all I want.”
“I just hope to die painlessly.”
“We can never go back.”
Their eyes had no will to live. There was only a strong desire for death. Their minds seemed to have withered a long time ago.
Qin Lie could not feel the slightest bit of life from their bodies. As for their hearts… they were long dead.
Small pools of tears welled up in Song Tingyu’s eyes. Biting her lower lip—not even realizing that it was bleeding—she looked deeply at these people before suddenly throwing down a bottle of pills. With a choked voice, she stated, “These pills… can help you on your way.”
She suddenly turned around and moved swiftly towards outside. “Let’s go, Qin Lie.”
Qin Lie watched them quietly pick up the pills on the floor and swallow them one by one. He watched them walk towards their deaths willingly…
He gripped his fists quietly and sucked in a deep breath. With icy coldness filling the bottom of his heart, he too turned around and left with newfound resolve.