Way Of The Devil Chapter 623
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Two months later…
In a certain office building in Flower Tree City.
About a dozen children about 13 years old were gathered in the spacious office lobby. Some of them were playing electronic games, some played chess, some read books by the windows, and some played computer games.
Du Xia glanced at her watch. It was about time for her to go home. Hence, she stood up and placed the poem collection in her hands down.
When she saw Du Xia stand up, a beautiful girl lying on the sofa with headphones on spoke up. "Little Xia, heading back so soon?"
Du Xia glanced at this girl. Her name was Zhou Quanwu, and she was also a Gesha. Moreover, she was the most powerful leader among them.
Just recently, some countries had officially listed her as a wanted criminal with the codename Yellow Springs Witch. Her bounty was an unprecedented 37,200 million lus.
This was equivalent to a tenth of the European Federation's annual income. This was a testament to her formidable prowess.
It was also Zhou Quanwu who united the scattered Geshas and formed the organization, Misty Erosion. The organization had protected many Geshas from being hunted and killed by various governments.
"Mm-hm, it's time for me to go back. Otherwise, big brother and my parents will start to worry," Du Xia replied drily.
"Why don't you move out? Come stay with us. It's not a good thing for you or for them if you keep living in the world of mere mortals while suppressing your own self." Zhou Quanwu wore a white miniskirt and black T-shirt which showed her navel. Her glistening silky straight black hair flowed smoothly down to her waist.
Du Xia glanced at her exposed long and perfectly fair legs. Her gaze lingered on a purplish-black pattern which resembled a tattoo on the side of her thigh.
The pattern was that of a sharp crescent blade. Spider-like openwork spread across the hilt and the blade which continued up to the inner side of her thigh.
Coupled with her white miniskirt and the slender lines of her fair legs, it was almost difficult to resist the urge to trace the blade pattern all the way to the region under her skirt.
Du Xia pried her eyes away. She looked at the setting sun through the French windows instead.
"I don't want to think about that for now. Where's Little Qiu?"
"He went out to play with Flying Bird and the others," Zhou Quanwu answered in a lazy tone. She continued to lie down. Her crystal-like purple eyes were wide open as she switched the song that she was listening to.
"Play?" Du Xia frowned. "Look at the time. They've been gone since morning, right?"
"Yes. You should give them a call," Zhou Quanwu replied casually.
Du Xia squinted and scanned the entire lobby. She straightened up and patted her skirt down. There was some dust on her brown knitted skirt and white stockings.
As she stood up, a red-haired boy who was playing games in the lobby tossed his joystick away. He stood up and stretched.
Another young girl with golden curls placed the handphone she was playing with on the table. She was still chewing gum as she stood up and looked at Du Xia.
The three of them had always moved as a unit. If the Yellow Springs Witch was the leader of Misty Erosion, Du Xia was the leader of this trio.
"Let's go. We have to find Little Xia." Du Xia tugged on her flax-colored hair in an attempt to smoothen it out.
The red-haired boy moved closer with a smile and asked, "Can you buy me the latest copy of Space Time Odyssey? It's the volume from last month."
"No problem. But before that, help me look for Little Qiu," Du Xia said drily.
The red-haired boy waved a hand before his own eyebrows with a smile, and said, "Understood."
The three of them standing up seemed to have attracted the attention of the others in the lobby. His friends who were playing the game were sighing and whining as they persuaded the red-haired boy to stay and play a few more rounds. However, their efforts did not bear fruit. The red-haired boy apologized to each of them with a smile on his face, but he would not give in to their request.
"We have an activity tomorrow, don't forget to show up. I've given the school a heads-up," Zhou Quanwu said lazily from her perch on the couch.
"Alright." Du Xia brought her companions to the door. The door opened, and they pulled up their collars so that they protected them from the wind.
"Dingding. Dingding. Dingding."
Suddenly, Du Xia's cellphone rang. She lowered her head and glanced at the screen. It was an incoming call from Little Qiu.
"Hello? Where are you? You'd better get back here, or else." Du Xia had always maintained an image of a quiet girl in front of her family members. However, outside the house, she was a strong character who would not take no as an answer.
With her strength, she was the only person in Misty Erosion who could compete against their leader, Zhou Quanwu, and somehow manage to hold her ground.
Although the two of them had not actually fought before, they were certainly of the same rank. They were a tier above the other members.
Back home, although Du Xia and Du Qiu were twins, their strength was as different as the heavens and the earth.
"Little Qiu?" When there was no sound from the other end of the phone, Du Xia immediately felt puzzled.
A suppressed sobbing could faintly be heard through the receiver.
"…Xia… sister Xia… Little Qiu is… dead! Hnghh…" A sobbing voice of a boy spoke with broken sentences and conveyed the message to Du Xia's ears.
Du Xia's eyes froze immediately. A terrifying gleam flickered within her pitch-black eyes.
"Tell me that this is a joke."
"It's… Imperial Phoenix… The men from Imperial Phoenix found them… The entire dam exploded… Everything's destroyed!" The boy on the other end of the phone recounted what had just happened.
The cellphone in Du Xia's hand immediately exploded into powder.
She stood where she was without moving a muscle. She stayed unresponsive for a long time.
The goldilocks stopped chewing on her bubble gum. She was slightly at a loss. The red-haired boy dared not believe his ears as well. He suddenly snapped to his senses, and quickly made a call to verify what he had just heard.
The result of his verification was that they were not lucky. For a time, the sounds of Little Qiu's surviving companions, their comrades from the organization, and the blaring sirens of the police cars and ambulance could be heard from the receiver.
The boy's cell phone slipped from his hand and dropped onto the ground. He wanted to bend down and pick it up, but when he accidentally saw Du Xia's expression, he was instantly frightened and dared not move.
The three of them said nothing more.
"Dead?" Du Xia stared blankly into the air before herself. For a time, she seemed to have lost herself completely in her own thoughts.
When Du Xia came to, it had been more than a week.
Du Qiu's funeral was held in the city's funeral parlor. Many turned up in an endless stream.
Du Xia sat blankly to the left of her younger brother's portrait. She returned the gestures of the guests numbly while her mother cried at the side.
Her big brother Du Xiong sat with an upright posture. He had the same mourning look.
He had to deal with the various questions and comforting words the guests offered. As the eldest son of the family, he had to do more than returning gestures, which was all Du Xia had to do.
Her father Du Xuning stood at the entrance with her first uncle to guide the visitors into the hall. His reddened eyes were slightly swollen. It was clear that he had been crying for quite some time as well.
"What happened to Little Qiu?" This was the most frequently asked question from all the visitors.
"He was playing by the dam when it suddenly exploded. The cause of the explosion is yet unknown, but he and a few friends were…" This was the answer the Du Family gave. It was also the answer given by the police.
However, Du Xia knew that things were not as simple. Perhaps her big brother and parents believed this explanation, but she knew that this was no accident.
With Little Qiu's abilities, even if he was not as powerful as herself, his life would never have been endangered by a sudden explosion.
Her only hope for now was to find out the actual criminal as soon as possible. Zhou Quanwu had already started investigating. Her secular identity was a great federal general's daughter. She was born with extremely high authority and status.
However, Du Xia would never rely on that single method alone.
The funeral lasted for quite some time. Du Xia followed obediently behind her seniors all the time as they arranged for the various matters for her dead brother.
They kept themselves busy until nightfall. When the visitors started to thin, the three of them were finally replaced by the funeral parlor's staff and went to rest in a side hall.
"Are you alright?" A napkin was suddenly presented before Du Xia's eyes.
She took it and wiped away her tears. She looked up to see her big brother Du Xiong, who loved her and her little brother the most.
Du Xiong was feeling sad and appeared slightly dispirited. His eyes were reddened as well, though he still put up a strong front.
Du Xia knew that his sorrow was certainly no less than hers. After all, her little brother Du Qiu had been quite fond of their big brother, and had always clung to him.
"I'm alright," she replied softly.
"If Little Qiu was still here, he would definitely not want to see you in this state," Lu Sheng advised her genuinely.
He felt anger inside him as well. He had just Arrived here, yet he had lost one of the individuals he had to protect as per his karma.
Also, this happened to be his weakest phase.
As for the reddened eyes and being in low spirits, those were the natural reactions given by this body.
"The police are investigating this. They're also coming up with an estimate of the compensation we'll receive. Father and mother are talking to them now. If need be, we'll sue the local power supply department," Lu Sheng said simply.
"I know…" Du Xia nodded.
Lu Sheng reached out and ruffled Du Xia's hair. He would not make the same mistake twice. With the death of his little brother, he lost a small portion of the spirit which he would reap at the end. Hence, he carefully attached some Yang Essence aura onto Du Xia as he ruffled her hair.
He had also attached the same aura onto Du Xiong's parents.
"Shall we take a walk?" Du Xia made a rare invitation.
Lu Sheng was slightly stunned. Then, he nodded.
The two of them informed their parents and exited the funeral parlor. They walked slowly along the path of the hill. Du Xia walked in front, while Lu Sheng walked at the back.
After walking for some distance, Du Xia was the first to speak up.
"Let's keep Little Qiu's room the way it is now, shall we?"
Lu Sheng nodded. "I've told Father and Mother already."
There was a brief moment of silence. Du Xia found a huge boulder, gave it a pat, and leaned on it.
Lu Sheng stood beside her. They looked at the dried, yellowed mountain grass that swayed in the wind far away.
"About Little Qiu's death, there's something wrong with the police investigation. It doesn't seem like a simple accident," he said, almost to himself. "I don't believe the results of the investigation. So, I'm thinking of doing my own investigation."
Du Xia was stunned.
"Does Father and Mother… know?" She was slightly hesitant.
"They don't. But I'll investigate it with my own methods, don't worry." Lu Sheng flexed his own biceps, and jokingly said, "I've been training in more ways than one lately."
Du Xia had heard from her parents that big brother had been training in the martial arts lately. What she did not know was how advanced in them her big brother was right now.
"Brother…" Du Xia wanted to say something, but the words eluded her. She wanted to tell her big brother clearly that Little Qiu did not die from an accident—it was murder.
However, even if her big brother, who was a mere mortal, learned about the truth, he could do nothing but be furious and powerless.
Hence, she had also planned to investigate this herself. If it really was the Imperial Phoenix… the empire's dogs, then it would really be the time for her to agree to Zhou Quanwu's grand plan.
"Don't worry, I'll take care of things. Also, if there's anything troubling you, please tell me. I'll share the burden with you." Lu Sheng pinched her cheek lovingly.
"Mm-hm!" Du Xia felt the warm sensation which she had longed for. Her eyes moistened slightly. She felt a sting in her nose as she tried hard to fight back the tears.
She suddenly turned around and closed her eyes.
Lu Sheng's hand froze. He shook his head helplessly.
"You should head back. I'd like some time alone," Du Xia said softly.
"Alright. I'll be right there." Lu Sheng walked away slowly in a bout of helplessness.
When he was some ways away, Du Xia slowly opened her eyes. Her pupils were no longer their usual black. They were now brilliantly dark gold.
Countless golden speckles shone and flickered in her eyes. They resembled starlight.
"No matter who you are."
She clenched her fist. Her eyes were cold with a killing intent.
"I'll find you and kill you!"
The boulder in front of her quickly contorted, shattered, and burned. It was enveloped by dark golden flames, and was burnt to a crisp in the blink of an eye.
Brilliant red light shone enchantingly on the couch.
Zhou Quanwu lay down lazily on the couch in the office building's lobby. One of her arms hung to the side and her hand touched the floor. Her slender and beautiful index finger touched a long and ancient-looking black scabbard.
"The first trammel: removed." Zhou Quanwu stared at the setting sun outside the window and suddenly giggled.
Even though it appeared that she was alone in the lobby.
"Did you really have to do that?" a big and tall figure asked softly from the shadows.
Zhou Quanwu gripped the black scabbard lightly.
"Trammels are weaknesses.
"And weaknesses... are fatal…"