Before Cui Zuojing’s words had completely fallen, there was a slight crunch as muffled footsteps landed on blades of grass. A pair of scarlet eyes completely left the cover of darkness, exposing its huge body to everyone.
It was hard to say exactly what this thing was.
The most direct feelings it gave the Dong brothers was a suffocating and oppressive sensation. The person in front—let’s call it a person—had a height of more than two meters tall. It’s waist was integrated into that of a warhorse, and its whole body was covered with thick, rusty armor that rustled with every step.
It exuded an old and decaying breath, exactly the same as when Dong Zheng had watched it climb out of a bottomless coffin. The breath from hell.
Its head seemed to be just a heavy helmet filled with a cloud of black mist and two scarlet fires glowing brightly as eyes. It held the same rusty long sword. Even so, no one would doubt that the sword wasn’t sharp enough.
It glanced disinterestedly at Cui Zuojing in front, and slowly turned its head towards Dong Zheng and Dong Linhai under the tree.
Then it raised its hand and pointed its sword.
Dong Zheng clutched the wound on his waist. Although Cui Zuojing had shared some of his injuries, he was still dizzy from the excessive blood loss. The moment the sword was pointed at him, reason and intuition told him one thing: Run!!!
“Linhai, you go first.” Dong Zheng quickly understood that in the face of such a powerful enemy, they simply did not have the ability to respond positively, and this “Arabidopsis” whom he signed a blood contract with in a hurry… Dong Zheng didn’t think he could deal with the monster.
Dong Linhai looked at the centaur monster, and looked at Dong Zheng, who was covered with blood, then at Cui Zuojing, who still looked unhappy. There was no boring and time-consuming “let’s leave together” scene. He gritted his teeth and turned to run. His figure was quickly engulfed in the mist of the dark forest.
The “it” silently looked at Dong Linhai’s departing figure but showed no signs of chasing. Then, its gaze turned back and locked onto the injured Dong Zheng, as if he was the only target.
Being pointed at with a sword made Dong Zheng’s heart sank, but he also conjured a firm guess. The golden ball that was previously taken from the coffin was indeed a key prop. This monster should have a role similar to a guardian—
“You go too,” Cui Zuojing said coldly. He touched the bandage on his shoulder and sighed. “Leave this thing to me. Please go and find a way to leave. I don’t want to be in this boring and low-witted box. It’s a waste of time.”
“It’s a guardian, and its level should be unbeatable at this stage. Maybe the two of us might be able to—“
“You will only drag me down,” Cui Zuojing interrupted frankly. He raised his lips and sneered, “A waste with five points combat power must have the consciousness of a waste with five points combat power(1). If you don’t go, be careful. I might even kill you.”
Dong Zheng choked and pursed his lower lip. But, Dong Zheng’s intuition said: Trust him.
He seemed to want to say something but, in the end, he only glanced deeply at the seemingly weak and slender youth before turning his injured body and running in the same direction as Dong Linhai.
The moment Dong Zheng took the first step, “it” moved.
Without any unnecessary movements, the heavy and rusty longsword shot forward with a piercing sound. The invisible sword energy tore through the air, intent on cutting Dong Zheng down!
But Cui Zuojing also moved.
He picked up a dead branch on the ground and stood between Dong Zheng and “It”. Just like a child carelessly brandishing a stick, he raised his hand to block it gently.
The sword energy that could cut people in half instantly disappeared.
It was like it’d never existed.
Dong Zheng’s figure disappeared into the mist in this instant, until he could no longer be seen.
“I can’t let you kill him.” Cui Zuojing held the branch. His eyes seemed to contain the embers of a fiery flame that had been forcibly cooled. He looked coldly at the knight. “Henry, I haven’t seen you in a long time. You seem to have forgotten me.”
The monster called Henry didn’t seem to hear him. With a war cry, it shifted its four hooves toward Cuo Zuojing and charged!
Kill everything that stands in front of it!
The iron halberd cried out in the open space, initiating the start of a battle. The ringing sound of their weapons colliding awakened a small black crow perched in the shadows. No one would think that a longsword and a branch would make such a sound when they collided. But in fact, the moment Cui Zuojing’s branch touched the longsword, the blade shattered, scattering the rust.
The huge impact forced Henry two steps back. It finally looked seriously at Cui Zuojing, an eye-catching thing that prevented him from retrieving what was lost.
Cui Zuojing threw away the branch that was cut into two pieces and picked up a new one. The moment he held it, the dry and fragile stick became the sharpest weapon in the world.
This was his ability in the Pure White Realm. It was called [Slayer]. The longer he stayed in the Pure White Realm, this power, which had been lost for eight years, will gradually return.
“It’s not strange that you forgot me. After all, we didn’t have a deep relationship. But, do you still remember Fu Zhe?” Cui Zuojing said again.
As he stared at the monster that was much taller than himself, although his tone was relaxed, his body was tense and vigilant.
He was giving himself time to adjust.
Henry still didn’t react. It drew out a rather ancient sword and screamed. Black gas spewed out of the helmet. Urging its horse, it once again rushed towards Cui Zuojing!
Instead of hiding, Cui Zuojing greeted it with two steps forward. The distance between them narrowed to the extreme. The imagined scene of the smaller soldier being cut down into flesh and blood did not happen. The youth moved, and the stone held in the air between his fingertips blocked the mighty sword. At the same time, his wrist shook, accurately shooting a stone at Henry’s chest, right on the heartguard!
The deliberately thickened piece of shield instantly burst, the remnants scattering out along with the remaining force of the shot. Henry’s chest cavity was exposed in front of Cui Zuojing’s eyes. Among the empty shells under the heavy armor, there was only a heart that was still beating. Three layers of iron hoops tightly locked the only living organ, making every beat extremely difficult and leaving only tremors.
A painful, struggling tremor.
The moment the heart was exposed, Henry let out an inhuman howl. The two red lights in the helmet went out. Under Cui Zuojing’s gaze, it stumbled back a few steps and hit a giant tree with a loud “Boom!”
Layers of cracks appeared on the outermost iron hoop that trapped the heart. The frequency of the heartbeat quickly grew and grew and was at last “crush”!
The thick rust on the armor and the sword fell off, clearly revealing the patterns on each armor and the forging marks on the blade.
It no longer looked like a zombie crawling out of an old coffin but like a real knight.
Without the layer of restraint, the heartbeat became smoother and firmer, and after a breath, those eyes lit up again.
Henry looked at Cui Zuojing. Now, it seemed to have a slight consciousness. The uncommon branch in the youth’s hands somehow made it feel timid.
It took two steps back. Then, it sensed the guardian stone in a different direction. No longer intent on the youth in front of it, it turned and ran away.
The knight’s figure disappeared from his field of vision. Cui Zuojing breathed out a sigh of relief, and the branch in his hand simultaneously turned into dust, dissipating in the air.
Although he could turn anything into a weapon, the more fragile the thing, the shorter it could be used and the more irreversible the damage to it.
Just like this branch, which had directly disintegrated.
Cui Zuojing did not catch up; he was a little tired. In addition to the curse of the Prisoner of Time on his body, he’d just returned and had had to share Dong Zheng’s wounds. As a result, his condition was actually very poor.
He didn’t know what happened to the two brothers. Cui Zuojing closed his eyes and sensed the connection between the blood contract and prisoner card.
It was like looking for a trace of light in a totally dark world.
After a breath, Cui Zuojing opened his eyes and used the blood contract with Dong Zheng to check if the other party was in danger. A normal prisoner could instantly return to the master’s position by using the card, but before the clown could teach him the relevant operations, Cui Zuojing was summoned here. Therefore, he could only walk.
Cui Zuojing also had his own standards regarding the owner’s qualifications. At the moment, he still didn’t know much about Dong Zheng.
It was quite troublesome.
On the other side, Dong Zheng ran all the way in the direction that Dong Linhai had left not long ago and came to a forest hut.
The warm yellow light in the house stretch out far through the mist and shadow. Dong Zheng slowed down and approached with caution.
The house looked very much like a ranger’s hut, with pens for chickens and ducks, and a ground nest for the ranger gate, backed by a stream. He picked up a stone and slammed it against the door of the hut. He listened for a long time but didn’t hear barking or other sounds.
There’s no one here?
For the time being, it was possible that someone could deliberately pit him.
However, the sudden appearance of such a room was definitely a key plot point, and he must go in and take a look.
Dong Zheng counted the things in his package. This was only the second time that he and Dong Linhai entered a box. Like all newcomers, they didn’t have much equipment. When they passed the novice box, they only received a dull-edged dagger.
The dagger that is about to break(upgradable)
Just like its name, it is about to be broken.
Maybe it can be used to cut an apple?
He went around to the window and looked inside. From what he could see, there was nothing suspicious.
Dong Zheng no longer lingered, and directly pushed through the window, trying not to make a sound when he landed. He glanced at the door, which he hadn’t been able to see through the window. There was a highly decayed corpse resting on the door, and the blood stains on the door panel and the floor were already dried to black.
If he’d pushed open the door just now, there was a high probability that this poor corpse would be ruined.
The room looked nothing special. Dong Zheng looked around for a while and finally squatted down to check the corpse. His nose wrinkled at the rotten smell, but he continued to check.
Judging from the clothes on the body, this was the owner of the hut. A local forest ranger. There were very obvious finger marks on the skin remaining on his neck. His jaws were open, but there were no wounds other than this. He should be choked to death.
But… where did the blood come from?
Was there something else in this room?
Dong Zheng slowly got up and looked behind him. At the corner of the living room and the bedroom, there was a hint of shadow. He seemed to notice that he was seen and quickly retracted.
Dong Zheng clenched the dagger in his hand.
Xixi: A few things to keep in mind:
1. Cui Zuojing is an experienced player. Naturally, CZJ will seem kind of OP at first, especially while in beginner levels. Meanwhile, Dong Zheng is a novice player and will have to work hard to level up.
2. The prisoner contract. Although, they are technically considered owner and prisoner, the relationship between the two is equal. The author is merely using it as a means of bringing the two leads together.
(1) “A waste with 5 points combat power must have the consciousness of a waste with 5 points combat power.” CZJ is basically saying DZ is weak and should think like it. Per Baidu, this sentence was a reference to Dragon Ball Z, when Raditz landed on Earth and saw a farmer with a handgun. His detector noted that the farmer’s combat power was only 5 points. After saying contemptuously, “Waste with only 5 points combat power,” Raditz easily killed the farmer in seconds.