The crowd climbed up the stairs. Dragon Ben randomly waved his hand around, releasing magic to clear out a path before them.
“Wait!” Li Yuewen suddenly stopped, and halted them with a cold voice.
“What’s wrong?” Claire frowned slightly. She examined their surrounding concentratedly. There didn’t seem to be anything unusual.
“Claire, you rely on this dragon’s brute force too much. This does no good for your growth! So from now on, he’s not allowed to help. Unless you only have one breath left, he’s not going to do anything!” Li Yuewen spoke solemnly.
“What?” Claire gaped. Just looking at the stairs filled with rocks gave her a headache. Was she going to clear all of this by herself?!
“Good luck, colonel. I’ll fan you from behind.” Camille came up behind Claire with a bitter expression. From somewhere he acquired a little fan, ready to fan Claire.
Dragon Ben voluntarily backed up, giving way to Claire.
Summer laughed silently. Qiao Chuxin blinked, not really understanding the situation.
Walter yawned, and leaned on the walls, waiting. Jean was about to say something, but Li Yuewen glared at him darkly: “If you want Claire to die on the martial arts tournament platform three months later, then lend her a hand.” Jean backed up silently.
Claire sighed resignedly. Sulking, she lifted up the sword on her shoulder and tried hard to emit DouQi, and began to clear out a way before them.
Finally, the long path was cleared. The group reached the entrance to the cave.
Claire waved her sword and yelled. A powerful DouQi shot straight towards the rocks blocking the entrance. Bam! Rock pieces spew out, and the area in front of them was lit up.
The instant they saw light, Claire set up a magical barrier. The next moment they heard the rattling sound of arrows striking the barrier. As expected, there was an ambush at the entrance!
“Fly free, child!” Resentment from all the previous work piled in her heart, Claire spit out these words ferociously. Before the rest understood what she meant, Claire already started chanting. The golden flames on her hands rapidly swelled into enormous fireballs!
Claire threw them outside fiercely . Screams and yells sounded all around them; sure enough, they saw many shouting people being blasted right into the air.
“Uh, Claire, those people, are the sailors.” Summer said weakly.
“Their consciouses have already been devoured. It’s the conscious of someone from the Hua clan in their bodies. The moment that person’s conscious leaves their bodies, they become the living dead. To let these proud soldiers of the empire live like zombies is the greatest insult to them.” Although Camille was smiling, his eyes were cold when he said these words gently.
“Yes. Death may be the best relief for them.” His gaze determined and far ahead, Jean said in a low voice.
Summer quieted down. Among all the people in this group, she was the only one that didn’t have such a deep understanding of death.
Without unnecessary words, Claire waved the Tidal Sword and rushed outside. Using her mental power, she desperately attacked the conscious hidden in the sailors’ bodies.
Li Yuewen leisurely sat down on the ground to watch Claire’s performance. The bodies of these sailors were way too weak. Even though they were possessed by someone else’s conscious, their actual strength was still the same. Claire could easily settle them by herself. Very soon, Claire finished her business and walked back carrying the Tidal Sword, her face dark. The group who were resting on the ground stood up.
“The conscious on those people disappeared.” Claire said quietly, “To control a body, mustn’t the spell caster be somewhere close?”
“Yes! Hurry, the ship!” Li Yuewen suddenly realized, then ran before them, leading the way.
“One person cannot control too many sailors, so he must have controlled part of them, then took over the others by force. And he won’t kill them either, since he also needs sail back!” Li Mingyu explained with his brows knitted together tightly, following behind.
Sure enough, when the group arrived at the ship, it was unusually quiet. They found the tightly bound sailors and captain in the cabin.
After untying them, they all talked incredibly about their experiences, describing how their long-time friends actually attacked them! And how after binding them, they took the weapons and got off the ship.
But Claire wasn’t listening to their report, instead heading directly towards the bottom floor of the cabin. That was the only place they never went! The rest of the people also followed Claire down.
A desperately suppressed coughing sounded from inside the cabin storing wine. Claire humphed coldly and kicked the door open. It was hard to see in the dusky room, so Claire released a fireball to light up the place. They then saw a pale young man covering his chest and trying to constrain his coughing in a corner. The bright redness at the corner of his lip showed that he wasn’t hurt lightly.
“Hua Nantian!” Li Yuewen gasped, yelling out his name. It was clear that they knew who he was.
“You went as far as coming to assassinate us by yourself.” A cold light flashed across Li Mingyu’s eyes as he said in a low voice.
“I myself is enough.” The young man named Hua Nantian sneered and said densely.
Yet the moment he spoke these words, he was caught off guard by a force struck at his face! He was knocked down instantly and unable to get up.
Everyone dropped their jaws as they watched the situation before them. Claire had kicked Hua Nantian right in the face, and was now standing on his head.
“You yourself is enough? Then what are you doing now? You are now being stepped under my feet, spitting blood, and trampled worthlessly by me.” Claire’s gaze was like a thousand-year-old glacier, her frightening voice even icier.
Everyone was shocked. They have never seen Claire like this before.
“If you don’t have the strength then don’t talk nonsense! Strength is the prerequisite of speaking.” Claire’s cold voice echoed in the room. Everything of everything is false, only strength is true! When you have power, everything you say is the truth! Everything you do will be the standard of justice! So, become strong! Become strong!
The Hua Nantian being trampled by Claire glared bitterly at her, his eyes full of hate and unresignment.
Claire looked coldly at the man underneath her foot and sneered, “Don’t look at me like that. You hate me? You are not qualified to hate me! If you need to hate, hate yourself for being too weak. If you were stronger and more powerful than me, then the one being stepped on right now would be me. And I absolutely would not hate you. I would only hate that I am too weak, that I am unable to defeat you. Or, I would hate my conceitedness and recklessness, for refusing to work with others and instead wanting to claim the reward by myself, and recklessly acting alone.”
The crowd just looked at Claire, dumbfounded. This Claire before them was very unfamiliar, very unfamiliar. But, she emitted an indescribable charm. What was this? None of them could say clearly.
Astonishment and fury flashed across Hua Nantian’s eyes. Obviously, Claire had poked his pain spot. Wanting to claim the reward all for himself, he headed alone to assassinate the Li siblings, but he didn’t expect for them to have a person that could attack mentally with them. Even more so than that, that person’s mental power was so ridiculously strong!
“Let me live, and I will pay an equal price.” Hua Nantian squeezed out this sentence.
“Your life is worth a lot?” Claire sneered, increasing the pressure under her foot.
“The Li clan is so stretched economically, they’re almost broke. I will pay five million gold coins.” Hua Nantian said with difficulty under Claire’s foot.
Claire turned her head, and saw Li Mingyu and Li Yuewen’s expressions change slightly; there was both embarrassment and vexation. Claire understood that what this person said was true. Looks like the Li clan did decline greatly.
“Let me ask you a question.” A cold smile surfaced on the corner of Claire’s lips.
“What?” Hua Nantian could only feel the foot on his head becoming heavier and heavier.
“When you kill a person, and they beg for you to spare their life, or suggest that they could pay in exchange for letting them go, what would you do? Claire asked softly and gently, “If you lie you will die even faster. Don’t forget that my mental power is way above yours, and I can detect your mental undulation, even if the slightest one.” Claire’s voice was so icy that people felt their hearts tremble.
Hua Nantian swallowed, then answered struggling: “I…… I would still kill them.”
“Then that’s it.” Claire smiled coldly and gradually raised the Tidal Sword, slowly but gently stabbing it little by little into Hua Nantian’s chest. Her mesmerizing smile and elegant motion made a deep imprint in the minds of all that were present.
Hua Nantian’s pupils were very very wide, his bulging bloodshot eyeballs filled with unbelief. This young girl with an ordinary appearance before him took people’s lives so calmly, so elegantly!
“What you yourself couldn’t do, what right do you have to require others do? Your life is a life, but others’ lives aren’t? Claire’s distant voice sounded softly.
A heart-trembling coldness slowly spread throughout the room.
Suddenly everyone was confused. Was this the brilliant young girl they knew? The kind young girl that promised them to protect them forever, and this young girl before them that brutally took a human life, were the same person!
This wasn’t their illusion. Such contradicting behavior happened on the same young girl!
Blood sprayed into the air, drawing out a strange and creepy arc. It also splattered onto Claire’s face, but Claire pulled out the sword turned away slowly, as if she didn’t feel anything at all.
Camille was still smiling like a spring breeze. He walked up and took out a clean handkerchief, then with one smooth motion, carefully wiped off the blood on Claire’s face.
Nobody knew, that the color of the black mark on the back of Claire’s hand, darkened even more……