Xie Tianyang shouted himself hoarse. No matter how much he wanted and tried to save her, he just couldn’t muster the strength to even get up.
Essence was a soul’s foundation, its core!
Its role was to condense divine sense and anchor the soul. Once taken away, the soul would scatter while the flesh would keep on living merely as an empty shell.
Chu Qingcheng jerked. You Yushan wasn’t using her as a bargaining chip, but putting her to death. Her team acted at once.
Far too late however.
You Yushan’s gray energy rippled and he lifted the hand placed on Xue Ningxiang’s head. As if pulling something.
Xue Ningxiang’s face grew ashen, sheer terror painted on her face as she spoke faintly, “B-big brother Zhuo… save me…”
Then, the top of her head flashed in a blinding light and a pure mote of energy rose above.
Xue Ningxiang’s eyes dulled, having lost the energy to stand, even her cheerful nature dissipated, as she fell to the ground.
You Yushan was overjoyed at the dazzling light, intoxicated even, “Such pure essence is rarer than rare. What a waste letting her live for so long. Fortunately it has found its use in the end.”
You Yushan placed the essence in a censer, then sealed the lid before putting it away.
“You Yushan, release Ning’er’s essence!” Chu Qingcheng’s delicate voice came, just as her palm was poised to attack.
You Yushan replied in kind.
The two attacks met and were both forced back. You Yushan took the recoil to his advantage and flew away in laughter, “Ha-ha-ha, without her essence her soul will last for a few more days, enough for that punk to say his last goodbyes. Pass this along, would you? If he wants revenge, we’ll be waiting at the earth exit!”
Chu Qingcheng glared in hatred at the fleeting You Yushan.
Just then, Long Xingyun and Xie Tianshang flew in front of him and cut off his retreat.
“You Yushan, don’t think you can get away from me with murder!” Xie Tianshang’s sword flew.
The bright and thick sword attack crossed the entire sky. Long Xingyun snickered, “He-he-he, now that you’re here, don’t even think about leaving!”
The incredible sword and palm attacks startled You Yushan. With two against one, Six Dragons and One Phoenix at that, he had no hope of escaping.
In his desperation, he released his spirit animal to take the brunt as he escaped.
The Scorching Eagle was struck as it was still making sense of its surroundings. The two Profound Heaven experts’ attacks weren’t that threatening, but the eagle still cried in pain.
It turned its head dumbfounded.
[Where’s master?] He had let him out but there was no sight of him.
Xie Tianshang and Long Xingyun were stunned, [He is lower than vermin! To even use a 5th level spiritual beast to cover his ass, he is scum!]
[But we’d be far worse if we wouldn’t accept this sacrifice!]
Xie Tianshang and Long Xingyun smiled coldly and attacked the spirit animal.
The duo released their own beasts to attack You Yushan’s beast and put it down for good.
The Scorching Eagle was devastated, [What the hell? Can someone please tell me what is going on? Why am I suddenly in a deadly situation?]
No one cared enough to enlighten the beast. The two beasts and their masters surrounded it. They beat it into submission and tears, turning it into spoils of war.
The fleeting You Yushan sighed and cried.
[Sorry partner, everything is for the mission.]”
“Brother You, wait!” A panicked cry reached him. You Yushan found Yan Bangui next to him.
“Ol’ poisoner, how did you escape?” You Yushan was stunned.
Smiling at his fortune, Yan Bangui said, “It’s thanks to you distracting them. I slipped away after taking a pill.”
“If I had known I wouldn’t have used my spirit animal! Oh, and why didn’t you take out your own spirit animal to save me?”
Yan Bangui smirked, “Sure, and what good would three men and three beasts do against one man and two beasts? It would only end up sacrificed like your own in the end.”
Faltering, You Yushan’s face twitched.
[This is our mission, not mine alone!] He had lost the most in this.
Yan Bangui was quite hurt as well, yet pleased as punch, ready for his reward. You Yushan’s anger only rose.
Back to Long Xingyun, the man and beast team clobbered the Scorching Eagle down to its last breath then placed it in his ring. Only then they flew to provide help to Xie Tianyang and others.
Chu Qingcheng’s girls helped Xue Ningxiang up, but her dead eyes and fading life force left them in grief.
Chu Qingcheng’s eyes teared and placed a hand on her head. Dong Xiaowan cried, “Edifice Lord Chu, what are you doing?”
“With lady Ning’er’s essence taken, her mind is in chaos and her soul is about to scatter. The agony is no different from having one’s marrow pierced by a thousand needles. The pain is enough to harm the soul. It’s better to release her from the torment!” Chu Qingcheng gnashed her teeth, her heart bleeding at the injustice.
Dong Xiaowan was stunned. She looked away as tears streamed down.
The Xue clan and Xie Tianyang weren’t by Ning’er’s side but the words cut them deep still.
They hoped to save Ning’er, even if it was a flimsy hope. But none wanted to put her through such torment.
Only Leng Wuchang nodded, “Not a bad way to die. At least better than muddying the ground with blood. You Yushan showed quite the initiative in this mission.”
Huangpu Tianyuan smiled…
“Ning’er, please don’t blame me.” Looking at Xue Ningxiang’s pale face, Chu Qingcheng’s palm was ready to strike. But then…
Chu Qingcheng looked stunned as Xue Ningxiang’s dainty hand stopped her.
With barely any strength left in her, even with her eyes dull, she still held on to the last bit of energy, holding back the attack. A deflated and weak smile graced her lips, “Edifice Lord Chu, please… give me more time. I want to see big brother Zhuo one last time…”
Chu Qingcheng’s words were stuck in her throat.
She knew the pain of having one’s soul scattered, but nonetheless, Ning’er wished to wait for Zhuo Fan. As a woman, especially a woman who loved the same man she did, Chu Qingcheng’s heart was in such pain that she turned around.
Xue Ningxiang gave a faint smile, “Thank you.”
Once Xue Ningxiang and the Xue brothers recovered enough with the help of pills, they rushed to Xue Ningxiang’s side.
The pale face and increasingly weakened figure filled them with sorrow.
Xie Tianyang wanted to go get her essence back, but Xie Tianshang held him back. The other side had Huangpu Qingtian and neither of them were his match.
Xie Tianshang may be a martial fanatic, but he knew his limits. Before they could do anything else however, they had to wait for Zhuo Fan and discuss it.
But even after two days, Zhuo Fan was nowhere in sight. Xue Ningxiang only got worse, at the brink of death.
Xie Tianyang was always by her side, in tears.
In the afternoon of the third day, Xue Ningxiang and Xie Tianyang saw their Thunder Ring flashing.
Xue Ningxiang was moments away from passing, but her eyes shined and a smile appeared, “He came…”
Lightning crashed and Zhuo Fan landed. He saw less than one thousand men and his heart seized. He asked Chu Qingcheng nervously, “I-is everyone alright?”
Their faces were dull and words had left them.
Zhuo Fan’s heart skipped a beat, feeling the gravity of the situation.
Xie Tianyang’s bloodshot eyes turned to him, his voice laced with hatred, “You’re too late. Far… too late. “
Zhuo Fan was taken aback seeing the brother he went through life and death with, show such an expression. But then he noticed something and his lips quivered, “H-how is… Ning’er?”
Xie Tianyang only closed his eyes, but tears never stopped flowing.
Zhuo Fan grew more nervous as he approached slowly with shaky legs. He didn’t want to accept that because of him, Huangpu Qingtian had moved against Ning’er, a sweet and frail girl…
As the sad and despondent people slowly made way to reveal a delicate figure, Zhuo Fan’s mind was blown away, rooted on the spot…