The Fire Dragon People
Feng Nu laughed politely. “President, no need for such courtesy. To be honest, I have not truly attained the martial saint realm. The future is vast and unknown, we must be more careful! First, everyone should regain their strength.”
Ka Luo nodded. “Jia Te Lin, how are our casualties?”
Jia Te lin appeared next to Ka Luo. “Captain, we have seven lightly injured, no heavily injured, and no deaths. In total, our battle strength is secure. I really did not think that we could so easily annihilate sixty iron-backed land dragons. This is thanks to the mages and Miss Feng Nu.”
Ka Luo said, “Everybody, let’s rest here and recover as much qi as possible. The uninjured brothers must stay on watch and guard against any other magic beast attack. It’s such a shame about those land dragons. If we could tame them we could become the number one mercenary group–a land dragon cavalry!”
Hua Rui’s voice, like a broken gong, spoke, “What’s a shame? It’s already pretty good that we didn’t become these land dragons’ dinner. If we wanted to grab a land dragon it would have to be on our own and young in order to tame it. How would this be easy.”
Ka Luo laughed heartily. “That’s right! It is lucky that we are without casualties. Ruirui, rest up. You used a lot of strength.”
Nian Bing walked over to a different corner of the hillside to sit alone. His crazy attack had consumed nearly half of his magic power. Without hesitation, he entered a meditative state. At the same time, he split his mind in order to think over about what Long Ling had said before.
They rested for two hours. The injured mercenaries had their wounds wrapped and recovered their strength. The rest drank some water and rested. The appearance of the land dragons did not harm their morale but actually boosted their spirits. After all, iron-backed land dragons had a fearsome name in the Yangguang Continent for ultimate defense and fearsome attack power. They made a premium, highly coveted mount for any empire. It was just a shame there had never been anyone who could organize a land dragon cavalry and this time they had just wiped out sixty of them. Additionally, Feng Nu, Nian Bing and the others displaying awesome might also boosted the mercenaries’ confidence.
When Nian Bing returned to the main group, he was wearing his usual smile. As a man of reason, he would definitely not let his worries weigh on him for too long through careful consideration of the pros and cons. He walked over to Long Ling and said quietly, “Ling’er, there will be unknown dangers ahead. You must be very cautious, and definitely do not get injured because of a moment of compassion. Promise me, okay?”
When Long Ling had told Nian Bing about her engagement with Shi jiu, she did not feel well. But for some reason, when Nian Bing had been venting on the land dragons, she felt a feeling of elation come over her. Right now, when she saw how quickly Nian Bing had returned to normal, her heart sunk again. She nodded her head slightly, indicating that she understood.
“As for our issues, let’s talk about them after this operation is over, okay? Do not suffer unduly. Cheer up.” Having said this, Nian Bing retreated over to his sedan to discuss the plan of progression with Ka Luo.
As she looked at Nian Bing’s back, Long Ling did not know why her heart trembled. Logic told her that she should not try to get close to Nian Bing again, but Nian Bing’s last line made her feel mysteriously confident. What did he mean by that?
“President Ka Luo, what do you think about the land dragon attack?” Nian Bing asked cooly.
Ka Luo creased his brows. “It is very possible that it was orchestrated by the enemy. Land dragons are a solitary magic beast; so many congregating together is strange. Moreover, they attacked us on two fronts; that is even more strange. I think that is a scheme from the enemy who sneak attacked us that day.”
Nian Bing nodded. “I also think this. So we must be even more careful with our next movements. The enemy is definitely much stronger than we imagined. If we cannot deal with them, I hope your decision-making is swift so we can retreat quickly. Life is the most precious thing we have. Sacrificing our lives for money and other benefits is definitely an unwise choice.”
Ka Luos’ face twisted, and after quite a while, he nodded reluctantly. “You are probably right. If it weren’t for you joining, I’m afraid our task would have already failed.”
Deep in the Tian Dang Mountains.
“Bastard, who told you to order the land dragon legion to attack those humans?”
“That is, Elder, those land dragons are really stupid and they normally fight against the other life forms in the mountains; they don’t really have any other use. I think that those humans should have already died. Based on their strength, they only amount to the land dragons’ lunch.”
“Hmph, Luo Yi, how many times have I told you that you cannot look down on humans. The iron-backed land dragons possess extremely small traces of dragon bloodline, but they are still related to dragons. If Lord Dragon blames you, it will all be your fault. Honestly speaking, I can’t feel the aura of the land dragons you dispatched.”
“What? That’s impossible. How could those humans be so strong? It would not even be easy for us to deal with over sixty land dragons.”
“Have you forgotten what I just said? If they didn’t have the strength why would they enter our Tian Dang Mountains with such fanfare? Those humans dare to covet Lord Dragon’s treasure trove. Has the wound on your back healed so soon? Go prepare for us to greet our guests.”
“Elder, I know I was wrong. But don’t worry, with the strength of our clan, we will definitely be to stop them from leaving. And even if they are strong, they cannot match Lord Dragon.”
“Impudent, Lord Dragon definitely cannot be disturbed. Have you forgotten what happened last time Lord Dragon was woken up from his slumber?”
“Ah! Elder, I apologize. I will go at once.”
The Ice Moon Mercenary Group set out once more. After passing over one more mountain, they were astonished to find the landscape change completely.
Not a shred of winter could could be found here. It was a warm spring. As far as the eye could see, the not very tall mountains were covered in a lush green; the temperature was much warmer than all the other mountains. The dense vegetation set people’s hearts at ease as the scent of flowers filled the air. Every kind of animal was shuttling back and forth on the mountain forest; the sounds of insects and songbirds were heard distinctly. They could even hear the sounds of water on the mountainside. Here, there was no sense of danger, a utopia! The dichotomy of what lay before them and what behind made the mercenaries stop in their tracks. Right now, they finally understood why there were no signs of animals existing on the outer mountains.
Nian Bing inhaled deeply through his nose, then said coldly. “This is the source of the fire aura. The ability to produce such a strange scene in the midst of a severe winter only confirms the specialness of this place. Teacher Li De, do you feel it? The fire element here is particularly lively while the other elements are lacking.”
Li De nodded and frowned. “Could it be that this is related to the treasure trove? If there is a fire gem vein here, it could possibly change the weather like this.”
Upon hearing about a fire gem vein, all of the mercenaries’ eyes shone. How many gemstones would it take to turn several mountains into a warm spring!? If there really was a vein, it would rival an empire’s wealth.
Nian Bing shook his head. “We could not be so lucky. Besides there being an entire mountain worth of fire gems, there couldn’t be such lush vegetation. There is something strange here. President Ka Luo, you cannot forget what I said.”
Ka Luo nodded. “We should keep going. Even though there is an enemy here, we must take the chance.”
The mercenary group descended the slopes. The warmth made them even change their thick clothing. Their progress was much quicker than before. Nian Bing sent his spirit out in order to observe his surroundings and probe for the existence of an enemy. The enemy had warned them that day, so someone will definitely appear today to stop their advance.
However, the Ice Moon Mercenary Group advanced forward much easier than they had imagined. Not only were there no signs of an enemy, even the wild animals of the forests had avoided them. No difficulties had disappeared. Sitting on the sedan surrounded by beautiful sights, Nian Bing’s nervousness abated slightly.
As they drew closer to their goal, the surrounding temperature increased. When they finally caught sight of the their target mountain, the environment felt no different than a summer’s day. Ka Luo ordered everyone to take off their heavy clothes in order to lighten up for battle. They continued on.
Jia Te Lin, at Ka Luo’s suggestion, jumped up into the air. He pushed off lightly against a large tree, sending himself hire once again until he reached the top of the tree. At the top of the tree he pushed himself off again, until he was sent near 26 meters in the air.
Nian Bing couldn’t prevent himself from envying the sight of Jia Te Lin light body skill. In certain aspects, warriors had a superiority that mages couldn’t hope to match!
The body in the air floated down like a leaf. Jia Te Lin’s icy face was lit up by excitement. “President, I saw that there is a large cave on the base of the mountain ahead of us. It was easily visible from outside, and there seemed to be no one guarding it.”
Ka Luo’s eyes sparkled. “This seems much too convenient. We must not let down our guard. Let’s go.”
They continued their way through the mountains. After passing through a lush forest, they could finally see the cave that Jia Te lin had spoke of. The cave really was big; the mouth was almost 35 meters wide and the insides so dark they could not see anything inside. Ka Luo pulled out the map and scrutinized it carefully. It was true, this cave was where the treasure trove was.
Ka Luo took a big stride over to the cave, looked all around, then barked out, “Let four people guard the mouth of the cave. Everyone else, protect the mages as we go in. We must move quickly.”
“There is no need for that. Once you came here, your lives were already forfeit.” A deep voice gravelly with age spoke, and the air around them suddenly became abnormally hot. From the forest around the cave and above the mouth of the cave lept out nimble figures. They were entirely red. Ka Luo felt an enormous pressure on his head and unconsciously took a step back back into his own mercenary group. This obviously was a trap laid for them.
Both sides sized each other up. Ka Luo and his mercenaries were in a clear area, while their enemies were always in a hidden spot. Right now, as they looked at one another, Ka Luo couldn’t help but gasp cold hair. Were they even human?
There were hundreds of red shapes before them, surrounding the mercenaries from all directions. They were identical to humans in stature, without any difference, but it was easy to see a huge difference in their skin. Well, it would be more accurate to say that these enemies did not have skin. Their bodies were covered entirely with a layer of fine, dark red scales. Their rough clothing only covered the important spots. Under the sunlight trickling in through the shade of the stress, their scales glowed with a dark red luster. The sudden increase in temperature seemed to be of their making.
Eying the three, tall scaled people right in front of him, Ka Luo said solemnly, “We have inadvertently caused you trouble. We just want the things in the cave. Perhaps we could come to an agreement.”
The middle scaled man seemed to be very old. He said cooly, “That is impossible. In that cave lives our mighty Lord Dragon. Don’t even talk about going in; now that you have seen our clansmen, you cannot leave here with your lives. If you want to commit suicide, we will leave you with that concession. Killing such lowly humans would dirty my hands.”
Ka Luo glanced at his surroundings. All the scaled people showed outward calm, flexing their fingers tipped in what looked to be sharp claws as they looked at them with cold gazes. He continued to calm himself because he knew, that if every scaled person was as strong as the two who had attacked them that night, they would not be able to escape today with their lives.
Just as Ka Luo had no idea how to respond to the situation, Nian Bing spoke up. “Sir, hello. We have come here because of a treasure map. We bear now hostility to your noble clan and we did not know that this was your personal treasure. If you do not want us to take the treasure, then we will just leave. Is there a need to harm friendly relations?”
“Leave? So that you can come back with more humans and disturb Lord Dragon’s rest? That is impossible. If you will not kill yourselves, then we will kill you.” He raised his hand to order the scaled people to attack.
Nian Bing and Feng Nu exchanged glances with Feng Nu. He suddenly recalled what Xi La De told him. With surprise he asked, “You are the dragon people? Are you the dragon people who protects the great dragons?”