Soaring The Heavens Chapter 505
Westwards they went, chasing after the setting sun upon the barren desert. The darkness of the night sky loomed behind their backs, while the path ahead was stained by the orange-golden glow of the sunset.
As the bright crimson star gradually descended over the horizon, a turbulent wind began to pick up. The three that rode at the front suddenly changed directions and galloped off to the side. Seeing this from behind, Miao Yi shouted in reminder, “Cheng Yingwu, I think you’re going in the wrong direction!”
Cheng Yingwu turned her head and shouted back, “Brother Niu, it looks like it really is your first time coming to Flowing Clouds Dune Sea!”
Miao Yi quickly scanned his surroundings, then pulled his mount around and led the others to change their path. As he chased after Cheng Yingwu, he asked, “What do you mean by that?”
“Have you not noticed that the direction of the wind has changed?” Cheng Yingwu asked.
Miao Yi immediately urged his mount to its highest possible speed and chased after Cheng Yingwu. Once he was riding next to her, he asked, “So what if it did?”
Cheng Yingwu tilted her head to look at him and smiled, “Around these parts, there’ll always be a Mountain-Crossing Dragon just before sunset.”
“What’s a Mountain-Crossing Dragon?” By asking this question, Miao Yi was undoubtedly admitting that it was indeed his first time here. He knew that he could no longer keep it a secret anyway.
There was a playfulness on Cheng Yingwu’s small, attractive face as she said, “So you admit it’s your first time coming here then?”
Miao Yi asked, “Is this important?”
“Of course it is. If it isn’t your first time here, then you would naturally know about the Mountain-Crossing Dragon, and I wouldn’t have to explain it to you.”
“Please enlighten me.”
“That’s more like it! That’s how a person should act when humbly asking for guidance! The Mountain-Crossing Dragon refers to the strange winds that blow over these giant sand dunes. Once it starts blowing, it will at least persist for a whole hour. The winds are so strong that you won’t be able to see where you’re going, and your whole body might even get blown away entirely. That’s why it’s impossible for mortals to make it to Flowing Clouds Dune Sea through this path, given their traveling speeds. For the wind to suddenly change directions at this time, it means that the Mountain-Crossing Dragon is upon us.”
“So where are we going then? Finding shelter?”
“Yup! Well, actually there aren’t that many places that we can hide in. The terrain around this area is pretty much the same everywhere.” Cheng Yingwu turned back and shouted, “Open your eyes wide, everyone. We need to look for low ground to ride this sandstorm out.”
The wind was beginning to pick up and was already letting out a loud whooshing sound as the granules of sand on the ground rolled across the dunes. The whole group stood before a giant sand pit. Miao Yi and the others’ mounts were evidently a little unaccustomed to this weather and were a little restless. The nine Manor Heads also shared that same feeling.
“It’s here!” Cheng Yingwu suddenly turned her head around and said.
Everyone turned their heads as well and gazed in the direction she was looking in, then noticed an incomparably large brownish-yellow wall quickly closing in on them. Within that wall, a giant pillar of wind that extended to the skies could be vaguely seen whipping about, emitting loud rumbling noises. It was an astonishing sight indeed!
“Get down!” Cheng Yingwu suddenly shouted. She took the lead and jumped into the sand pit. The rest of the group quickly followed suit.
The Mountain-Crossing Dragon was upon them without any forewarning at all. The fierce, mountain-shaking whirlwind came abruptly, bringing with it a massive and powerful wall of sand. The whole group was instantly enveloped in darkness, but they could still feel the overwhelming force blowing above their heads. Perhaps even a normal Red Lotus cultivator would have difficulty withstanding such a sandstorm.
Miao Yi was cursing in his mind. Why didn’t Yao Ruoxian mention anything about such a vicious threat? However, he knew deep down that the worst of the sandstorm had already passed by hiding in this sand pit.
The sand pit was filled up almost instantly, burying Miao Yi and the others within a giant pile of sand. They had invoked their arts to keep themselves protected, but nevertheless, they could do nothing to stop themselves from being buried under.
Before Miao Yi and the others even had the chance to be shocked, they suddenly felt the immense pressure weighing down on them quickly receding. Soon, they popped their heads out of the sand.
As the invoked their arts to guard their faces against the unrelenting wind and sand, they opened their transcendence vision and noticed a large number of mighty wind pillars rapidly whirling around them. It was hard to tell how many of those there were. Meanwhile, an endless rumbling sound echoed in their ears.
It was the arrival of these tornadoes that helped blow off the layers of sand that piled up over their bodies. First their heads were above ground, then gradually, their bodies.
Miao Yi wasn’t concerned about the changes in his surroundings. As he invoked his arts and gazed through the murky, yellow shroud, he paid extra attention to the reaction of Cheng Yingwu and the others.
Bang! Cheng Yingwu and her group suddenly burst out of the sand mound covering them on their mounts.
“Let’s go!” Miao Yi imbued his voice with transcendence energy and shouted, then his mount immediately carried his half-buried body and abruptly broke out of the sand.
Despite their fear, when they heard Miao Yi’s command, the nine Manor Heads hastily burst out of the sand as well and quickly followed after him on their dragon steeds amidst the powerful sandstorm.
Their dragon steeds’ eyesight was rendered useless by the sandstorm at this point, and Miao Yi and the others not only had to use their transcendent arts to protect themselves, they had to shield their mounts from the storm as well. Using their transcendence vision, they scanned their surroundings, then commanded their dragon steeds to move using their intent. Meanwhile, the weight of the dragon steeds helped anchor them somewhat against this terrifying gale.
A large tornado swiftly swept past the place where they were just buried, and Miao Yi finally understood why Cheng Yingwu had broken out of the sand mound so abruptly; they were avoiding those things.
The powerful suction force of the storm nearly swept Miao Yi and his team up into the tornadoes, along with all their mounts.
“Follow me closely!” Miao Yi furiously shouted as he hurriedly followed behind Cheng Yingwu and her group. Whatever they were doing, he would do too.
He then watched as Cheng Yingwu and her group galloped through the gaps between the tornadoes like nimble spirits dancing in a hurricanehe was in utter disbelief.
However, Miao Yi soon realized the trick behind their movements. Although these tornadoes seemed terrifying, but as long as they could proceed at an equal distance between them, there wouldn’t be much of an issue. The suction force from the tornadoes would cancel each other out, creating a safe zone where the force of the wind was at its weakest. This was also the reason why Miao Yi and his group was able to move forward through this terrifying sandstorm.
If they were even slightly off course, it was easy to imagine what the consequences would be; they would surely be sucked away by the tornadoes.
As she continued to gallop in the front, Cheng Yingwu suddenly waved her hand, and her two escorts quickly broke into the gaps between the tornadoes at the side, while she proceeded forward.
Miao Yi didn’t know why their group was moving in such a manner. He just focused on following Cheng Yingwu.
Suddenly, an agonizing scream came from behind. Miao Yi abruptly turned his head around and saw several figures suddenly flying off into the tornadoes along with their mounts.
He then saw the two figures that ambushed their group quickly disappearing using the tornadoes as their cover.
“Niu Er! They’re ambushing us!” Behind Miao Yi, Deng Hu shouted in terror.
Miao Yi immediately turned his head forward. With a flick of his wrist, his sleeve quickly fluttered, and the Qilin Spear suddenly appeared in his grasp. Miao Yi hurriedly chased after Cheng Yingwu. He planned to cut off the head of the snake!
But alas, Cheng Yingwu was evidently more accustomed to this weather phenomenon than Miao Yi was. With just a couple maneuvers, she swiftly lost him.
Meanwhile, terrifying wails continued to echo from behind Miao Yi. As he turned around, he saw two giant balls of sand flying straight towards Deng Hu from the gaps between the tornadoes beside them.
With a horrified expression, Deng Hu frantically attacked with his spear and obliterated the balls of sand that came for him.
In such conditions, Deng Hu’s actions were nothing short of folly. However, he simply had no other choice. The balls of sand that erupted immediately blinded Deng Hu, which made things even worse given that it was already hard enough to see as it is.
“Ahh!” An agonizing scream resounded as Deng Hu’s headless corpse along with his dragon steed broke past the shroud of sand and was subsequently swept up into the skies, instantly disappearing into the tornado.
The two figures that had attacked him disappeared into the gaps between the tornadoes once again. At this point, there was no longer anyone else following behind Miao Yi!
Their team hadn’t even reached Flowing Clouds Dune Sea. This was still just the outskirts, and nine out of the ten Manor Heads that Traversing Water Palace had sent over were already dead!
Miao Yi’s expression turned cold as he continued to ride between the tornadoes on his own. He scanned the area around him vigilantly as he waited for the other three to ambush him!
However, he no longer saw any trace of Cheng Yingwu and her group. He simply traversed through the storm on his own in search of them.
By the time the Mountain-Crossing Dragon finally passed and the tiny specks of sand in the air had somewhat settled, the sky was already half in darkness, and half in light.
Where the sky was dark, a pale crescent moon hung up high, adorned by a myriad of tiny stars. And where it was bright, the sun shone as proof that it was disappearing on this side.
Miao Yi stood alone atop a sand dune as the rumbling noises gradually faded off into the distance.
He scanned his surroundings, but there was no one else in sight. It was utterly silent!
He and his mount shook off the sand that was on them. Miao Yi then looked up at the starry sky and figured out his bearings based on the direction of the setting sun. He then continued on his path alone.
However, he didn’t make it very far before stopping at another sand dune. He saw, under the fading light of the setting sun, three riders atop the sand dune on the other side. They were none other than Cheng Yingwu and her group. Miao Yi then watched as Cheng Yingwu took out her flower circlet and gracefully put it back on her head.
Miao Yi pointed his spear at the other party and asked calmly, “Why did you only attack them and not me within the Mountain-Crossing Dragon?”
Cheng Yingwu smiled. “Because they were in the way. There’s quite an attractive price on your head. If I let you get blown away by the Mountain-Crossing Dragon, how would I ever find it?”
Miao Yi suddenly narrowed his eyes and asked coldly, “Someone’s put a bounty on me? May I know who it is who wants me dead?”
Cheng Yingwu simply responded with a smile.
Miao Yi then asked, “Since the three of you have been waiting here for me, I trust that you’re confident in taking my life. Can’t you let someone who’s about to die know the reason why he must be killed?”
Cheng Yingwu replied, “I would if I could, but sadly, I don’t have any idea either.”
Miao Yi wasn’t sure whether or not the other party was really telling the truth. But from the looks of it, it seemed Cheng Yingwu wouldn’t tell him anything even if she did know the reason. He changed his question, “Who are you people?”
Cheng Yingwu smiled, “For someone to hear the name ‘Cheng Yingwu’ and not know that I’m the Sixth Young Lady of the ‘Hive Gang’ of Flowing Clouds Dune Sea, it proves that it’s your first time coming here.”
“Hive Gang? Sixth Young Lady?” Miao Yi had no recollection of these terms at all. He asked, “These are the so-called desert bandits you mentioned?”
Cheng Yingwu nodded. “The largest desert bandit gang in Flowing Clouds Dune Sea. You don’t have to feel ashamed to die by our hands!”
Miao Yi said coolly, “Then may I know how much this life of mine is worth?” He wanted to use the price of the bounty to figure out which of his enemies were the ones behind this.
“Not much! For someone that hasn’t reached the Red Lotus realm, you won’t be worth that much to begin with. The price is just about ten million Gold Crystals!”
This wasn’t such a high price, but it definitely wasn’t low either. Miao Yi couldn’t figure out anything from this. He nodded and said, “I can’t believe my head is actually worth ten million Gold Crystals! Then what are you still waiting for? Come and take it!”
“As you wish!” Cheng Yingwu brandished a wooden whistle and began blowing on it.
Miao Yi’s mount suddenly neighed anxiously as multiple white silhouettes began bursting out of the sand dune underneath them.
‘It’s a trap!’Miao Yi jumped up almost instantly and landed a few dozen meters away. He then saw that his own dragon steed was already completely enveloped by many half-foot long white centipedes.
His dragon steed neighed in agony and tried to charge out. However, it didn’t make it very far before crashing onto the ground, struggling in vain. Miao Yi could vaguely hear a chirping noise as the centipedes bit down on his mount.
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