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Chapter 297 - If Life Could Be Like the Moment When We First Met (Part Ten)
The demon vultures were even more frightening than the dragon serpents. They were stronger and moved like lightning, and their attacks were extremely bizarre. In order to survive their attacks from all sides, the best method was not to dodge, but to kill them as fast as possible. Then she would simply have to be even faster than lightning itself, even more abrupt and more berserk than a raging tempest.
She silently and indifferently stared at the sky full of vultures, her two white wings slowly swaying behind her.
Besides dragon serpents and demon vultures, the Plains of the Unsetting Sun most certainly had even more powerful monsters, but she did not save her most powerful attack for that time.
Without any hesitation, a bright flame began to burn within the depths of her eyes, even temporarily suppressing the dark-green poison.
Swishswishswishswish! Countless white feathers flew out from her wings, transforming into countless sharp arrows that shot towards the sky.
The phoenix's Feather Barrage..
As those several hundred demon vultures sensed the sacred Qi imbued within those white feathers, they scattered with cries of alarm, and the sky became blue once more.
However, those demon vultures would never see that same sky again, because the Phoenix feathers were too swift, even faster than lightning.
The azure sky was lit up by countless points of holy light.
The arrow-like white feathers pierced through the bodies of the demon vultures, slicing through their plumage like sharp knives.
For a moment, the sky was filled with severed beaks and shattered wings while countless sprays of blood bloomed like fireworks in the air.
Xu Yourong cared not, not even sparing another glance towards the sky.
At some point, the crystals surrounding her had begun to emit pure and warm rays of light that incessantly poured into her body.
She calmly looked around her and once again drew her Tong Bow.
The sun of the Plains of the Unsetting Sun would never set, so there was no time of sunset, but there was a dusk. In that period of time, the sun would turn into a disc of light and the light that blanketed the land would grow dim.
At dusk, the entirety of this sea of grass would be dyed red. No matter how shrill or unyielding the tune from the zither was, the monsters all eventually retreated. They had come like a tide, and now they retreated as one as well, disappearing without a trace.
At least several thousand monsters had died in the surrounding sea of grass. The vast majority of the corpses had been taken away by other monsters, sometimes even their own companions, to serve as food. Even so, because so many had died, many monster corpses were still strewn across the sea of grass. The foul blood slowly sank down into the mud, but the bloody foam left behind on the pile of grass by the waves did not disappear.
Murky and slanted rays of light peeked out from the distant horizon of the plains, causing this scene to be even bloodier.
Xu Yourong's face was extremely pale, perhaps because the aftermath of what had happened had been too repulsive, or because of the damage from her injuries.
At the moment, the crystals around her had all turned into fine white dust, no longer containing even the slightest trace of power.
She slowly put down the Tong Bow and dabbed her finger in some of the crystal powder, covering it.. This could at least dispel some of the ache on her finger and treat the cuts inflicted by the bowstring.
Without these crystals, it would have been impossible for her to push back this monster tide.
In fact, besides the Li Palace, the Imperial Palace, the Holy Maiden Peak, and the Longevity Sect, she had never before seen so many crystals.
This amount of crystals was truly rather ridiculous.
She gazed at the sleeping Chen Changsheng and silently thought to herself: as expected, the Snow Mountain Sect is truly worthy of being known as a sect that had a ten thousand year legacy of accumulation. Moreover, just like that Black Frost Dragon that they were descended from, they truly loved to gather crystals and treasures. This secret disciple of the Snow Mountain Sect was actually able to bring so many crystals with him.
She had already retracted her white wings. It was apparent that she would not be able to spread her wings again for a long time. Right now, she was absolutely exhausted. Her true essence was depleted, and she had lost too much blood. She had truly reached the point where the oil had run out and the lamp guttered. If an enemy appeared, she would die for sure.
It seemed like she did not even have the strength to drag herself to the middle of the pile of grass, nor did she have enough time to untie the longbow from her shoulder. Her arms wrapped around her legs, and she sat at the waterside, allowing that foul-smelling bloody foam to soak the edge of her dress.
When she was at her most desolate; when she needed help the most; and when she most needed to rest, as if there was some invisible connection between them, Chen Changsheng woke up.
She did not turn around, but she knew that he had opened his eyes. "You're awake?"
Although these were the plains of the Garden of Zhou and not Xining Village's old temple or the Orthodox Academy, Chen Changsheng still customarily, even stubbornly, took five breaths of time to compose himself, and then looked over.
However, when he glanced over at her, he began to feel ruefully apologetic. He realized that he probably should not have wasted the five breaths of time.
Xu Yourong sat at the edge of the grass pile, her arms wrapped around her legs as the bloody foam splashed against her dress. Her figure was extremely lonely and pitiful.
"Yes, I've woken up." Chen Changsheng stood up and walked over to her. He wanted to walk even faster, but the coldness of the Black Frost made his body stiff.
Xu Yourong still did not turn her head, because she was so tired that she did not even have the strength for it. She softly said, "Then let's switch places."
With these words, she slightly leaned her body, holding her two legs and placing her face on top of her knees. Just like that, she motionlessly fell asleep.
Chen Changsheng walked over to her side and gazed at her tightly-shut eyes and pale white face in silence.
He lightly unfastened her longbow, and then inserted his right arm into the crook of her knee while his left hand supported her back. Lifting her up, he pulled her away from the edge of the grass pile that was covered with bloody foam.
As he did all these things, she did not wake up. Not even her eyelashes moved. When he put her down, she still hugged her legs as she slept.
Some people would be strangers forever, whereas others would seem like old friends from the onset. Although they were strangers that had not exchanged many words and hadn't even exchanged names, they could entrust their lives and possessions to each other.
You only needed to see what sort of person they were, see how much trust they placed in you, and then you would be willing to place some trust in them in return.
Right up until now, they had always been together but had not said much to each other. However, when he woke up, she was able to relax and fall asleep. On the other hand, once she woke up, he could likewise snore away like the thunder. At the very beginning, she had saved him, which made him strive hard to protect her. Over the course of these events, a foundation of trust had naturally been formed, and now it grew ever firmer.
Chen Changsheng truly treasured this feeling of being trusted.
He took out his dagger and tightly grasped it in his hand. Taking a seat beside her, he stared out into the increasingly murky plains.
At this point, he saw the sea of grass dyed black by blood and saw the corpses of the monsters, and he got a rough picture of what had happened while he was sleeping.
He was quiet for a very long time.
The archery of the elves was truly marvelous beyond description, but… moments prior, when he had untied the longbow for her, he had noticed that the bowstring was still warm.
In this battle that he did not bear witness to, just how many times had she drawn back the bow? How many arrows had she fired? How had she been able to endure it?
Night had finally come, and the sun suspended over the edge of the plains grew even dimmer. Although it did not sink below the horizon, it cast much less light over the plains.
He sat in front of her, calmly staring at the dark grass, prepared for a battle to erupt at any time.
Time slowly passed by and that disc of light suspended at the edge of the plains slowly made its way around the perimeter. For some reason, he could not see it anymore, but he quickly realized it was because it had been obscured by a black cloud.
Perhaps because the killings during the day had been too cruel, the monsters did not launch another attack. However, it began to rain.
The plains' climate was relatively warm, but the rain that fell from the sky was still rather chilly. With the state that he and Xu Yourong were in, if they were to get soaked, they really might come down with a severe cold.
Without even needing to think, he opened the Yellow Paper Umbrella and held it over Xu Yourong.
However, the posture was rather uncomfortable. Even if the Yellow Paper Umbrella were to be even bigger, it still would not be able to block out all the rain.
Seeing the rain wetting her dress, he did not give it any thought and immediately stood up.
The cold rain fell upon the sea of grass, countless tiny ripples interspersing its surface. It fell upon that pile of flattened grass, pervading it with chill.
He stood behind her, his left hand holding the umbrella and his right hand holding the dagger, as he gazed at the drenched and dark world outside.
Throughout the night, he maintained this position.
From beginning to end, the monsters did not appear. With the coming of the morning, the black cloud scattered, and the azure sky once more appeared before his eyes. That disc of light at the edge of the plains gradually grew more distinct, its edges becoming sharper as the morning sun took shape. The warm rays of light gradually began to dry both the pile of grass and Chen Changsheng's clothes that had been soaked through by the rain.
Xu Yourong woke up and gazed at his pale face. She was somewhat puzzled as she thought to herself that there had been no battle last night, so why did it seem like his injuries got even worse?
Chen Changsheng did not tell her that he had spent the night holding up an umbrella for her, or that the chilly rain had soaked his back.
From the night before, they had always been either escaping or battling, one person unconscious and the other awake. This was actually the first conversation they held while they were both conscious. In the end, their interaction in the cave had been too short. Although they already deeply trusted each other, even to the extent that they faintly had a sort of mutual understanding, they realized that they were still strangers when they were both awake. It was inevitable that they felt a little estranged from each other.
Chen Changsheng remembered that scene in the Plum Garden Inn when he first met Tang Thirty-Six—that had been the first time in his entire life that he had ever met a stranger and exchanged greetings. Although in hindsight he seemed rather awkward, he had at the very least understood some basic common sense. For instance, there must always be someone to open their mouth and break the silence.
In these treacherous plains, exchanging greetings was an unacceptable waste of time, so he went straight to the point. "What do you know about these plains?"
The elves were most intimate with nature. The legends said that they could even communicate with the grass and trees, so he wanted to hear what she had to say.
Xu Yourong shook her head. "Nobody understands these plains."
Chen Changsheng said, "As long as you don't mind, could you let me choose the direction?"
Xu Yourong was somewhat confused, and asked him, "You know where to go?"
Chen Changsheng did not explain very much. "I have a rough indication of where to go."
Just as it seemed Xu Yourong was prepared to say something, she suddenly sensed a Qi that was several hundred zhang away.
It was Nanke's Qi.
Time and space in the Plains of the Unsetting Sun were somewhat strange. Although it seemed like they were separated by only several hundred zhang, in reality, they could be even farther away than that.
But she had still managed to sense it.
She said no more, indicating that she accepted Chen Changsheng's decision, but she did not get up. Chen Changsheng understood that she was still weak and her injuries were severe, so it was very difficult for her to be able to walk on her own in such a short amount of time. However, this made him question, despite obviously being in such a poor situation, how had she managed to kill so many monsters yesterday?
He turned his back towards her and said, "As long as you don't mind."