Almost at the exact same time as the mist neared, five beams of light shot out from five different directions within the mountain. All of them were different colors; these were none other than the totemic Sacred Ancients that resided in the tallest peaks of the mountains of the Five Tribes.
Simultaneously, five protective shields sprang up, covering the entirety of the Five Tribes, cutting them off completely.
Next, the members of the Five Tribes unleashed the power of their various totems. Their eyes were bloodshot and filled with vigilance; clearly these people were prepared to die for their Tribe. The Greatfathers, Priests, and Grand Elders from the Five Tribes, all of them Nascent Soul Cultivators, emanated intense killing intent. Their faces were grim as they looked out at the churning black mist.
It was at this point that the black mist slammed into the protective shield. Booming sounds filled the air, and the ground quaked. The once emerald forests in the areas withered and turned black.
Miserable shrieks could be heard from the various beasts that lived in the area. Their bodies began to rot and they turned into pools of black liquid.
It only took a few moments for the entirety of the Crow Divinity Mountains to be filled with a death aura.
Suddenly, a sinister voice echoed out from within the churning black mist. “Five Tribes of the Crow Divinity, we are the Five Poisons Clan Spider Branch. You may surrender… or die!” The voice rolled out in all directions, transforming into a thunderous roar. A powerful, domineering will could be sensed within this voice; this was the power of a mid Nascent Soul Cultivation base. It echoed into the ears of the members of the Five Tribes, causing the blood to drain from the faces of many. Even with the protective shield in place, it still caused blood to ooze out of their mouths.
“To the death!” cried the Crow Gloom High Priest. He was a middle-aged man with a look of keen wit shining in his eyes. His words rang out, filled with determination. This was all the answer they needed to provide to the Five Poisons Clan.
“To the death!!” All the members of the Five Tribes joined their voices into a powerful roar.
“TO THE DEATH!!” the shocking sound transformed into grim, cold determination. It rose up into the sky and charged into the black mist, and the ears of each and every Cultivator of Spider Branch of the Five Poisons Tribe.
Among the three thousand Cultivators of the Spider Branch, twenty were Grand Elders and one was a green-robed High Priest. All of these people were currently looking at a young woman who was surrounded protectively by more than ten cold-faced Cultivators, all of whom had green totem tattoos on their faces.
The woman appeared to be a little more than twenty, with long, beautiful hair and a bright red robe. She was beautiful, and her red robe could not hide the voluptuous curves beneath. Her beauty almost seemed demonic; her eyes were cold and seemed completely ruthless. This ruthlessness was quite a contrast to her beauty, causing her to be even more sexually attractive.
On her forehead was a white spider totem tattoo; as it glittered, the spider it depicted almost seemed to be moving.
This woman was one of the five Holy Daughters of the great Five Poisons Clan, Zhao Youlan of the Spider Branch.
The white spider on her forehead was called Wisdom Spider; only natural born Holy Daughters could acquire it.
“Revered Priest,” she said lightly, “commence with the attack! First, deal with the shield. Call forth the totemic Sacred Ancient!” Just like her name, her voice was like an orchid, beautiful but cold.
This particular High Priest of the Spider Branch was an old man in a long green robe who held a black, wooden wand in his hand. Having heard Zhao Youlan’s words, he nodded and then pointed the wand out. Instantly, the surrounding mist began to roil and then transformed into a gigantic spider that shot toward the shield.
A boom filled the air, and the shield rippled. However, it did not fall. The High Priest frowned, and then flashed an incantation with his right hand. The gigantic spider dissipated and then reformed into five black spears, each of them three hundred meters long. He waved his wand, causing the five spears to scream through the air toward the five beams of light shooting up from the five mountains in the area.
“Five Tribes totemic Sacred Ancients, please appear!” cried the Crow Gloom Tribe Priest. A jade slip appeared in his hand, which he crushed. Immediately, roaring sounds could be heard from the five mountains. The Sacred Ancients immediately emerged: the Crow Scout Tribe’s Treant, the Flame Sea of the Crow Flame Tribe, as well as the others. However, the instant they appeared….
Spider Branch Holy Daughter Zhao Youlan, behind her ring of guards, looked at the Crow Gloom Tribe Priest, her phoenix-like eyes glittering. Their gazes locked, and it was clear that both were aware of the identity of the other. These were the two in charge of this battle.
“Summon the Spider Sacred Ancient!”
A thunderous roaring sound filled the air as the clouds up above began to roil, and a massive crack appeared in mid-air. Five colossal spider legs, each one several thousand meters long, suddenly emerged from within the crack. It was impossible to see what existed past the crack; in any case, as soon as the legs appeared, they shot toward the five mountain peaks. In the blink of an eye, massive explosions could be heard as the spell formations cracked. The earth quaked and the mountains shook.
All of the totemic Sacred Ancients of the five Tribes roared and flew directly up into the sky. Then, up high in the sky, a shocking, bright red spider shot forward to slam into them.
“Spider Branch Battle Cultivators,” said Zhao Youlan softly, “there’s no need for battle formations. Use the totemic Demonspider webs to seal this entire area!”
“The Holy Daughter’s commands shall be followed!” cried the three thousand Spider Branch Cultivators, their eyes shining with savagery. They lifted their heads up to the sky and roared as the radiance of their totems exploded out. Immediately, illusory Demonspiders appeared, and the air filled with countless strands of silk that flew out in all directions. Hissing sounds filled the air as they shot toward the glowing shield; it seemed these threads also contained poison.
“Elders, please join forces to destroy the spell formation,” said Zhao Youlan, toying with her hair. “Get the Greatfathers of these Five Tribes to show their faces!”
“The Holy Daughter’s commands shall be followed!” Immediately, a dozen or so old men shot out from within the Spider Branch forces. The totems on their body glowed brightly, exploding with the power of the Nascent Soul stage. The ripples merged together to form a strange pattern, a spell formation that then shot directly toward the Five Tribes’ protective shield.
Just as it was about to impact, the Crow Gloom Priest’s eyes flickered.
“Greatfathers of the Crow Scout and Crow Flame Tribes, please lead the Priests and Grand Elders of the other three Tribes into battle!”
Immediately, the Crow Scout Tribe Greatfather roared and charged forward. He was followed by more than ten Priests and Grand Elders, as well as the Crow Flame Greatfather. They shot forth to intercept the incoming Cultivators, intent on preventing them from collapsing the protective shield.
It was at this point that the Crow Gloom Priest suddenly began to bark orders: “Members of the Five Tribes. According to our pre-war strategy, form into fifty-man squads. Five squads will form a company. Five companies will form a battalion! 1st Battalion will defend the northwest, 2nd Battalion the northeast, 3rd Battalion due north! Slay them with extreme prejudice!
“Remember, do not fight to the death! If you are injured, return immediately to the area behind the shield for healing.
“4th Battalion, 5th Battalion, please rotate in and out of the battle as needed. 6th Battalion, stand guard within the shield! This battle will not be concluded quickly. Tribe members, we fight for the Crow Divinity!” Immediately, thousands of Five Tribes Cultivators shot out of the shield, their eyes bloodshot.
“FOR THE CROW DIVINITY!” the roared as they charged to meet the incoming three thousand Cultivators from the Spider Branch.
The flames of war instantly raged into the Heavens. Magical techniques flared up everywhere. High up in the sky, the Five totemic Sacred Ancients were locked in battle with the Spider Branch’s Sacred Spider. That battle was something that far exceeded the Nascent Soul stage. Ripples spread out to cover the entire scene, making it impossible for anyone down below to see how the battle was faring.
Below them, the Nascent Soul Cultivators were locked in vicious combat. Mist spread out in all directions, making it difficult to see anything other than shadows. However, there was no doubt that the fighting was deadly.
Even further below, outside of the shield, thousands of Cultivators from both sides had created a rain of blood. To the Spider Branch, this was a battle to defend their pride as undefeated conquerors. They must win!
For the members of the Five Tribes, though, they were fighting for their home and their people. They could not retreat, and could not lose. If they did have to die, they would fight to the bitter end. That was because… behind them, beneath the protection of the shield, their fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters, and other relatives were all watching.
“To the death!!”
“For the Crow Divinity and for our Tribes!” Fierce cries echoed out. This lowest level of the battle was the fiercest. Bloodcurdling screams and blood flew about in all directions.
Inside the shield, the rest of the members of the Five Tribes were watching with clenched fists. Children were crying out in fear, and girls were weeping. Mothers’ hearts were breaking, and tears rolled down the faces of fathers.
Much further outside the shield, within the Spider Branch forces, Zhao Youlan gave a soft sigh. For a moment she looked disturbed. However, the negative emotions drifted away with her sigh. The right and wrong of war all depended on your perspective.
“Dragoneers! You are aware of the mysterious Dragoneer described in our top secret documents, the one who slaughtered Zhou Ye. The time has come to draw him out from within the Five Tribes!”
Among the Spider Branch Cultivators were three Dragoneers, located at the back of the battle group. They wore black robes and emanated gruesome auras. Furthermore, all of them were surrounded by various protective items that would shield them from any deadly attacks in battle.
Having heard Zhao Youlan’s words, the three smiled and flicked their sleeves. Immediately, the roar of neo-demons filled the air and beam after beam of light appeared. Roaring filled the air as a horde of nearly ten thousand neo-demons appeared next to each of these people.
When the Crow Gloom Tribe Priest saw this his face began to flicker. Something about the rhythm of this battle seemed off, but he really had no other choice at the moment. Turning toward the rear mountain district, he clasped hands and bowed deeply. “Grandmaster Meng, your assistance is requested!”
Meng Hao was sitting cross-legged in his courtyard, observing the battle. He had seen everything happening in the sky overhead, as well as the storm of blood on the battlefield. It made him think of the battle of Holy Snow City back in the Black Lands.
Then he thought about the Golden Crow and the great tree.
After a long moment, he sighed.
“Because of your kindness… I will do my best to ensure that the Tribe you created continues on into the future.” Sighing softly, he rose to his feet and walked out of his courtyard. He was followed by the Wild Giant, who lifted its head to the sky and roared, a bloodthirsty look in its eyes. Battles like these were exactly where Wild Giants liked to be!
1.Zhao Youlan’s name in Chinese is 赵幽兰 zhào yōu lán – Zhao is a surname. Youlan means “orchid.” ↩