Despite Li Yao, the Fire Ant King, and Professor Mo Xuan’s experiences in life-and-death struggles, they were still a bit anxious.
This was the first time that they had ever met the real Immortal Cultivators. Not the counterfeits such as Xiao Xuance and Lu Zui, not the remaining soul such as the star child, but authentic goods from the Imperium of True Human Beings!
“Their spiritual pressure is quite high. Judging from the twisted air around them, they must be very strong.”
“It’s hard to say how advanced their crystal suits are, but based on their fabulous and delicate spiritual shields, their control technology of the spiritual force field is definitely more developed than ours. Chances are that any bullets we shoot at them will be blown away or even sent back to us!”
“Li Yao was quite right. Three Immortal Cultivators, with so many Grand Illusionary Soldiers, are too much for the three of us. Even if they cannot defeat us, they will at least have time to retreat into the turtle shell!”
While Li Yao and his companions were whispering to each other, the three Immortal Cultivators in the distance took off their facial covers one after another and revealed their real faces, perhaps because they were confident about their own capability and believed that nothing on the planet, which had been dormant for so long, was a threat to them.
The three Immortal Cultivators were made of two males and a female. The shortest of them was an old man with a wrinkled face, a long hawk nose, and a pair of gloomy eyes. The brawniest of them was a bald, middle-aged man with scars on his face and a mustache that looked like black caterpillars. The youngest of them was a female with a pretty face. She was also the least calm of the three. Looking at the primeval relics around, she was almost bouncing in delight.
The three of them seemed to have just woken up from a prolonged hibernation. Their faces were all a bit pale, but they were reddening at a visible speed.
All the three of them took a deep breath. With fascinated expressions, they floated in midair and patrolled in their new ‘territory’ while they chatted with each other at ease.
Li Yao and his companions were too far away from them. Not having the courage to eavesdrop on the conversation with their techniques, they could only try to observe the Immortal Cultivators’ lips and guessed what they were saying. Because of the angle, they could not see very clearly, and they could only basically get what the strangers were saying after observing intermittently for about twenty minutes.
The female Immortal Cultivator took a long breath at first and said, “It’s been a long time since I last breathed such natural air!”
Then, her eyes glowed as she looked at the surroundings. “Exactly like I told you. There’s truly something here. A relic of the Pangu civilization! Such a great contribution would even be enough to expiate our past crimes if they were ten times more serious! As long as we deliver the message back to the Imperium, our titles, manors, and slaves will all be given back. We will even get ten times, or even a hundred times, more as reward!”
Of the two male Immortal Cultivators, the scar-faced, bald man who looked like a black tower appeared to be a taciturn one. He often replied with silence when the female companion quacked ten sentences. He was simply scratching his moustache, observing the relic, and nodding in satisfaction. The old man with a wrinkled face, on the other hand, was rolling his cunning eyes all the time. There was no telling what was on his mind, but he was echoing the female Immortal Cultivator.
Their accent was slightly different from the accent of the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the Flying Star Sector, or the Blood Demon Sector. It was impossible for Li Yao and his companions to grasp every word.
After observing for a long time, they finally got a general idea from the Immortal Cultivators’ conversation. The Immortal Cultivators had committed a certain unpardonable crime in the Imperium of True Human Beings, so they were exiled there to expand the territory for the Imperium as punishment.
They were the only three inside the war base, and they had been hibernating all the time until the mainframe crystal processor of the war base detected the feeble signals from Kunlun and woke them up.
The female Immortal Cultivator seemed to be some sort of ‘navigator’. It was at her insistence that they jumped to this place and discovered Kunlun at the cost of their remaining fuel!
“As we expected, the Imperium of True Human Beings has long learned the existence of the relics of the Pangu civilization. After finding this place, they are more excited than surprised!”
“Also, the Imperium of True Human Beings indeed has a slavery system. All three Immortal Cultivators owned a lot of slaves in the past, but the slaves have been divested because of a certain crime they committed. However, if they make great contributions again, the slaves will be given back to them!”
“Super large star beacons must be being built inside their war base. As soon as the star beacons are completed and activated, they will be able to reach out to the expedition army of the Imperium and even allow the expedition army to jump over directly!”
Li Yao and his companions were discussing the solution to the crisis when they sensed sharp pain simultaneously, and their pupils constricted to the minimum!
A shocking scene appeared on the picture sent back by the crystal camera.
The three Immortal Cultivators stopped talking at some point and stared at them warily.
“We’ve been caught!”
All the three of them were grasped by anxiety. They did not expect the Immortal Cultivators’ senses to be so keen. They were not even looking directly at the newcomers and simply observing them through the crystal camera, but they were still noticed!
Shua! Shua! Shua!
The facial covers of the three Immortal Cultivators closed again. The flames of light around them expanded and turned brighter and brighter.
Dozens of Grand Illusionary Soldiers flew toward Li Yao and his companions’ shelter in a battle formation.
“A battle right now is not in our favor whether we win or lose. We must not let them know our real intentions until Burning Prairie arrives!”
Thinking quickly, Li Yao declared, “I will distract them and try to calm them down. Also, I can elicit intelligence about the Imperium of True Human Beings from them! Unless it is absolutely necessary—say, the scene really goes out of my control or other unexpected changes take place—let’s not communicate with each other!”
The dozens of Grand Illusionary Soldiers arrived above them, and their crystal cannons had been activated. The immense spiritual waves shining around the barrels made the weapons look like colorful swirls.
There being no time for any discussion, Li Yao took off his crystal suit and the mustard-seed combat suit as quickly as possible. He then put on a well-worn fiber combat suit made of regular materials and the ‘Rockman’, a ragged, rusted engineering crystal suit that he had carefully prepared before the journey!
Gritting his teeth, he dashed out of the crevice!
Li Yao rushed here and there among the rocks and the debris, as clumsily as a rabbit whose leg was broken. He was waving his hands and legs crazily, and his every movement was only indicative of one thing—panic.
He sensed clearly that the dozens of Grand Illusionary Soldiers in the sky had locked onto him. Yet, they delayed their attack and simply surrounded him not far away.
Right then, a streak of seven-colored brilliance appeared in front of him as quickly as lightning!
He crossed his arms to protect his chest out of natural instinct. An orange spiritual shield was condensed instantly, only to be crumbled 0.1 seconds later!
He was blown out by an uncanny force into a rock, leaving a deep dent below him. The cracks were spreading out like a spider web.
It was the youngest female Immortal Cultivator, who had kicked right in his chest and crushed both his spiritual shield and the Rockman Engineering Suit into smithereens!
Chi! Chi! Chi! Chi! Chi! Chi!
Dazzling sparks were bursting out of the Rockman, and its hands and feet were cramping weird.
Li Yao moaned in great pain as if he could not even get to his feet.
The three Immortal Cultivators slowly landed while the Grand Illusionary Soldiers went back and searched Li Yao and his companions’ shelter.
While Li Yao distracted the firepower of the Immortal Cultivators, the Fire Ant King and Professor Mo Xuan had run away at the earliest opportunity. Of course, there was not a single trace left.
Li Yao was greatly relieved. He calculated the speed and strength of the female Immortal Cultivator’s previous kick and inferred her real capability.
The female Immortal Cultivator closed her fingers. A tiny dagger of light was slowly condensed on her fingertips, and she stabbed the dagger toward Li Yao.
Li Yao controlled his every cluster of nerves and muscle fibers precisely and held back his urge to counterattack. He pretended that he was unable to move and completely at the enemy’s mercy.
He won the gamble.
The enemy did not hurt him at all. She merely dissected the broken ‘Rockman Engineering Suit’ and set him free from it.
The three Immortal Cultivators observed him with great interest, as if he were a gorilla in a zoo.
“Cough! Cough! Cough! Cough! Cough! Cough!”
Li Yao coughed hard and crouched like a dried shrimp. His tears and snot spurted out at the same time while he asked, his voice shivering in fear. “Who—who are you exactly?”
The three Immortal Cultivators ignored him. They each dismantled many components from the Rockman Engineering Suit and covered the components in light, as if they were running some sort of analysis.
Very soon, the old man said, “The metal reaction of his crystal suit is different from the metal reaction of the planet. He shouldn’t be a native of this place!”
“The style of his crystal suit is obviously different from the style of the ancient armors in the primeval era. It is different from the Covenant Alliance’s style, too,” the middle-aged man remarked. “The characteristics of the Star Ocean Imperium are all over the crystal suit. He must be a descendant of the imperium at the edge of the cosmos.”
The female Immortal Cultivator who had kicked Li Yao right in the chest, on the other hand, picked up the Rockman Engineering Suit’s crystal processor and ridiculed it. “Such an underdeveloped crystal processor. I can crack it in the blink of an eye. Let’s see what is inside. Ha? Flying Star Sector? He is from the Flying Star Sector?”
Despite their thick facial covers, Li Yao could clearly perceive that the eyes of the three Immortal Cultivators were shining all of a sudden.
They had been exiled to the edge of the cosmos because of the coordinates of the Flying Star Sector that had been sent by the star child in the beginning.
The Flying Star Sector was their original target.
The killing intent on the female Immortal Cultivator was even more intense than before. Malicious brilliance was beaming out of the four crystal cameras embedded in the facial cover, as if she were going to dismember Li Yao into slices for research.
Suppressed by her killing intent, Li Yao was shuddering even harder, but his heart was as calm as ice. His braincells trembled crazily as he analyzed the postures of the three Immortal Cultivators and the loopholes on their crystal suits. He drafted forty-seven tactics within the second.