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Chapter 27 - Black Water

The four Bi Fang Clan warriors had been wearing a mocking smile on their faces while attacking Ji Hao. However, the moment they heard Jiang Xue screaming, they all turned away their spearheads, which had been inches away from Ji Hao’s face.

Their smiles vanished and their faces turned blue when they realized that Jiang Xue was being attacked. They shouted with trembling voices and rushed towards her, flashing with all their strength. Jiang Xue’s father was an elder Magi of their clan; if anything happened to her while she was under their protection, their entire families could even be killed by her father.

A figure appeared suddenly. It was an elderly man, standing between Jiang Xue and those warriors. The older man was scrawny, topless, with a two-feet-long, one-horned black snake coiled around his neck. His deathly pale skin was covered by tens of Black Snake Tattoos.

“Go away!” A warrior shouted at the older man. The blazing flame behind him transformed into a pair of fiery wings and spread out in the air. The warrior doubled his speed and flew up to the older man; at the same time, he held his sword high and chopped it hard towards the older man’s neck.

The older man was grinning deviously at the warrior. He stayed still, with his eyes fixed on the warrior. The snake coiling around his neck, raised its head while hissing at those warriors, after which it spurted out a wisp of cold black smoke from its mouth.

All four Senior Magi warriors were instantly turned into four black-coloured ice-sculptures by that black smoke. Their bodies had been wrapped in half-foot-thick black ice shells; the blazing flame behind them had disappeared without a trace.

Mr Crow had quietly been standing on Ji Hao’ shoulder. He spread his wings and fluffed his feathers when he saw that black snake, and cawed ceaselessly at it.

The one-horned snake swayed, uncoiled itself from the elderly man’s neck, and then rapidly enlarged its body into a several hundred feet long serpent, while making a hissing sound.

The temperature of the air dropped suddenly, freezing even all the nearby plants.

“Hey my old friend, he’s only a kid. Why’re you so nervous?” The elderly man asked the serpent.

The forked tongue of the serpent darted out from time to time; it went near the old man’s ear and hissed something to him.

The elderly man’s expression turned grim after that. He showed a trace of respect, turned towards Mr Crow and said: “Kid, I didn’t know that you’re carrying a Fire Crow with you. Those old guys in your clan...Are they dumb or what? What makes you qualified to make an agreement with a Fire Crow?”

Ji Hao glanced back. He saw that the Gold Black Mountain was only tens of miles away from him, which meant that he still was within the center area of the Fire Crow Clan. If he only made a loud noise, those Maguspriests, elders, and Fire Crows would be able to hear him, and would come to tear this old man into pieces.

He was slightly assured, turned around and said to the elderly man: “What does that have anything to do with you? You stinking snakes... How dare you sneak into our Holy Land?”

The older man sneered and said: “What’s the big deal about your Holy Land? I’m already here...It means that I’m not afraid of all. But I’ve never thought that such an interesting story was transpiring around here...Haha!”

Once the older man had finished his talk, another man rushed out of the woods and darted up to Jiang Xue, who was lying on the ground behind the elder man.

It was Black Water Jiao with his One-Horned Serpent coiled around his waist. Jiao grabbed Jiang Xue’s neck and pulled her up from the ground. Jiang Xue screamed out, but Jiao slapped her hard. She then coughed up blood and didn’t dare to make any other sound.

Jiao looked at Jiang Xue in the same way that a horse dealer looked at his animals. He ripped her clothes into shreds, squeezed her breasts and pinched her butt, then pulled her head close with his other hand and carefully watched her face.

Jiao spread his hands across her body and said: “This young woman is quite pretty. I heard that her family is influential in the Bi Fang Clan...And...she’s a virgin! She’s gonna be worth a fortune if we sell her to those slave dealers!”

“I finally got myself a nice piece! Haha!” Jiao’s face flushed red with excitement.

“Slave dealers?” Ji Hao looked at Jiao, who was thrilled. Ji Hao then took a glance at Jiang Xue, who was trembling, with tears remaining in the corners of her eyes. Ji Hao stepped cautiously backwards, then said to Jiao and the older man: “Glad that you’ve got something you like. I should head back home then. Goodbye!”

Jiao paused for a second when he heard what Ji Hao had said. The older man then said to Ji Hao: “Hey kid, I thought you would want to help this girl, even risk your own life. I mean...that’s what your Fire Crow warriors do, right? Are you really gonna leave now?”

“Do you think I’m stupid?” Ji Hao shrugged and pointed at them, “You two, I suppose both of you are Senior Magi. And your fighting beasts, I bet they’re on the same level as you. I am a Novice Magus. My only companion here is Mr Crow. I might be able run away in front of your faces...If I try my best. I would only get myself killed if I try to save her.”

Ji Hao laughed out and continued: “I’m not stupid, ok? Besides, she had been trying to kill me earlier. Why on earth should I rescue her now?"

Ji Hao then quickly took tens of steps backwards, and pointed at Jiang Xue, saying in the meanwhile: “Her father is Jiang Shu, an elder of the Bi Fang Clan. She is also the daughter-in-law of the Ji Shu, the leader of the Gold Crow’s warriors,...well, though Ji Shu has already killed his own son...Anyway, this girl could be worth a lot of money. Do ask for a right price!”

At this time, Ji Hao had already moved to the woods. Jiao and the older man took a step towards him. Mr Crow suddenly let out a caw; his wings started to emit a fiery light. Jiao and the older man then stopped hesitantly.

“Good, little guy.” Said the older man, “Never thought that your Fire Crow Clan had a smart kid like you.” The elder man gnashed his teeth and stared at Ji Hao. “You’re going to be harder to beat, even harder than your Abba. The Fire Crow Clan people...are very lucky.”

Ji Hao didn’t respond. He drew back into the woods.

Mr Crow enlarged its body, grabbed Ji Hao and transformed into a beam of fiery light, then flew towards the Gold Black Mountain.

Jiao and the older man took Jiang Xue, and also left the meadow quickly. They found a brook, jumped into it and soon disappeared within the water.

Back in the meadow, the four black ice-sculptures suddenly shattered into pieces. The cold air, which had been released from the sculptures, froze the entire meadow, including the bodies of Ji Hu, Ji Shui, and Ji Feng.

The voice of the old man resounded through the air: “What a smart boy...He’ll be really hard to deal with...But, since the Bi Fang Clan have got themselves involved with the affairs of the Fire Crow Clan...We, the Black Water Serpent Clan...will soon get our chance...”

After a while, a few Fire Crow warriors found the frozen meadow. They stood on the backs of the Fire Crows, while silently looking down at those bodies.

A bit later, a horn resounded through the entire Gold Black Mountain. However, the elderly man and Jiao were long gone, and the Fire Crow warriors had no way of tracking them.

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