Snowfall City, obvious by its name, that snow fell there constantly. It was a very cold place, with snow falling from the Octobers of every year, and lasting until the Februarys of the next year. The other three seasons were shorter, adding together to only seven months. Snowstorms occurred frequently, but they were never really serious. Every time the capital would send over relief supplies and people to provide assistance. There was never a big problem. But this time, the snowstorm seemed to be more severe, actually disturbing the Temple to go assist.
“Many of villagers are stuck, and unable to get out. The relief supplies aren’t able to arrive either.” As the carriage stopped at the edge of the town closest to them, Leng Lingyun got of it and gazed into the endless whiteness, speaking gently.
They were going to enter the borders of Snowfall City, but the road was covered in a thick layer of snow, so the carriage was unable to proceed. They must change to using sleighs. The sleigh was pulled by a type of short and sturdy magic beast, called Snow Beasts. Snow Beasts had strong limbs, thick paws, and long and dense fur covering their bodies. Everyone had already changed into thick, warm winter clothes, and at this time, Liu Xueqing was sure that Claire had a very valuable storage ring. But besides jealousy, she was also puzzled. How did Claire get such a precious item? Did Cliff give it to her? Impossible, Cliff only had one himself, and it was said that he acquired it after much hassle. Then where did Claire’s storage ring come from?
“We are first going this direction; there are three villages whose residents are stuck and can’t come out. They will have no food left very soon.” Leng Lingyun said as he studied at the map in his hands, “More people from the Temple have already went to the other side, so all we are responsible for is saving the people in the villages on this side as soon as possible.”
“This year’s snowstorm seem to be a little abnormal.” Watching the white mass of land before them, Jean frowned and said in a dark voice.
“Indeed, so the Temple sent us here, to investigate what is really going on.” Leng Lingyun sat onto the sleigh, and said to the others, “Let’s go.” But these things could be easily dealt with by just the Divine Prince and Divine Princess, yet the pope specially instructed for Claire to go with them; the meaning of it was as obvious as can be.
Everyone got on the sleigh. Leng Lingyun cracked the whip, and drove the Snow Beasts forward.
The snow winds blew with whooshing sounds, icy and infiltrating, as sharp as blades against the skin.
White Emperor and Black Feather hid in the cap of Claire’s cape, staring out.
The sleigh dragged out a long mark in the snow as it went towards the valleys.
The ambience was a little creepy the entire way. Silence; besides silence, there was still silence.
“Chirp chirp!” White Emperor climbed into Claire’s bosom, and scratched Claire with his claws.
Claire looked down and smiled gently, then took out a small piece of chocolate cake from her storage ring, and handed it into White Emperor’s claws. Seeing this, Black Feather hopped down, and reached out towards the cake in White Emperor’s claws. The two little things started fighting in Claire’s bosom, while Claire tilted her head and watched their fight with interest. Jean watched Claire’s malignant interest wordlessly; she could totally take out another piece of cake, but she just wouldn’t. She just liked watching the two little fellows fight.
“Claire, are both of these your pets? They’re very cute.” Liu Xueqing began the classic way of looking for things to say.
“Yes.” Claire didn’t bother to say more, just lightly acknowledging.
“But, what kind magic beasts are these two? I’ve never seen any like them.” Liu Xueqing reached out her hand, smiling warmly, toward Black Feather.
Jean turned his head aside, twitching the corners of his lips.
And then, sure enough, what he expected happened.
Black Feather’s claws fiercely attacked the back of Liu Xueqing’s hand, instantly scratching out three blood streaks. The three blood streaks were so out-of-place on Liu Xueqing’s fair skin.
“Aah!” Liu Xueqing exclaimed in a low voice, quickly drawing back her hand in pain.
“Divine Princess, I’m truly sorry.” Seeing this, Claire immediately grabbed Black Feather and said apologetically. She noticed the flash of enmity at the bottom of Liu Xueqing’s eyes; although it was only there for a split of a second, she still caught it.
“Don’t worry about it.” Liu Xueqing smiled warmly, and touched her wounded hand. Then, her gaze floated to Leng Lingyun. Obviously Leng Lingyun was aware of what happened over here, but he didn’t even turn his head, not to mention offering to treat Liu Xueqing’s wound.
Liu Xueqing’s beautiful face grew dismal, her resentment towards Claire multiplying.
At this time, the sleigh had already entered the canyon and sped forward. On their two sides were steep cliffs and scarce trees. There were no traces of animals; they were either hibernating, or went south.
“Lingyun! There’s dark essence present!” Suddenly, Liu Xueqing frowned and exclaimed in a low voice.
Claire looked up and scanned their surroundings, but didn’t find anything unusual. Jean frowned and placed his hand the hilt of his sword. Leng Lingyun became very alert, because Liu Xueqing was a lot more sensitive to dark essence than many people, including him.
“Where?!” Leng Lingyun’s expression became heavy. They couldn’t see anything abnormal around them, but Liu Xueqing sent out warning so their opponents had concealed themselves very skillfully.
“Nearby, on that side, wait no! There’s some on this side too! They’re everywhere, surrounding us!!” Liu Xueqing suddenly started panicking, and stood up, glancing around nervously.
“Roarrrr!” At this time, the Snow Beasts suddenly turned restless, and even began running wildly, seeming to have lost their sense of direction. They ran forward frantically, and the sleigh was going to ram straight into a huge boulder. The four on the sleigh immediately leapt off gracefully, and the sleigh slammed into the boulder with a bang; it broke into a thousand pieces, and the Snow Beasts ran away crazily. Very soon and their figures were completely out of sight.
It was dead silence around them, and they still couldn’t find anything abnormal.
Jean drew his sword and blocked in front of Claire without a word or change in expression, sensing their surroundings. Claire frowned at their calm surroundings, an ominous feeling rising in her chest. This quiet was too unusual, as if an omen before the storm.
“The dark essence is very strong!” Liu Xueqing’s expression changed. The enormous power that dark essence contained made her couldn’t control herself that well anymore.
Right at this time, soft rumbling sounds gradually sounded, and the ground under their feet began trembling slightly too.
“What is it?” Liu Xueqing frowned and glanced around, her expression nervous.
“Avalanche!” Claire’s expression changed slightly as she spit out one word, gritting her teeth. Looking up and glancing around, both sides of them were steep cliffs, while the ahead and behind them were endless canyons. Someone wanted to ambush them!
“Fly up first.” Looking at Claire, Leng Lingyun said hurriedly, “You take the Divine Princess, I’ll take Jean.” The only two here that could fly were Leng Lingyun and Claire.
However, Leng Lingyun had just finished speaking when a huge, black, five-pointed star matrix appeared under their feet. They were standing right at the center of the five-pointed star matrix! The edges of the five-pointed star matrix glowed with a faint black light, extremely creepy.
The noise grew louder and louder, closer and closer. Snow filled the skies and the earth, rolling towards the four people in the canyon, with sharp icicles mixed between the snow!
Claire reached out and grabbed Liu Xueqing’s hand, about to fly up into the air with her, but felt her feet sink down. An enormous force pulled on Claire’s feet, making her sink down and down. Claire wanted to spread her wings and fly up, but she simply couldn’t. The energy in her body was even disappearing slowly! Liu Xueqing broke free of Claire’s grip, wanting to move away from Claire, but the ground under her feet also sank, and her whole person sank down, and she couldn’t use any strength at all, too.
“Lingyun, Lingyun……” Liu Xueqing called out in panic, waving her hands wildly. But the pair of hands she was waiting for didn’t come.
“Tweet tweet!” Black Feather flapped his little wings, clutched onto Claire’s cape with his claws and tried with all his might to drag her upward, but to no avail. Claire sank lower and lower.
“Miss!” Jean turned around and stretched out his hand fiercely, grabbing Claire’s hand. But similarly, Jean’s feet were also entangled by an inexplicable huge force, rapidly dragging him down. Seeing this, Leng Lingyun’s expression changed greatly, and also extended his hand toward Claire, but Claire’s figure still gradually disappeared before his eyes, sinking into that huge five-pointed star matrix. Jean, holding Claire’s hand, also sank down slowly. Before Liu Xueqing sank down, her gaze was fixed deadly on Leng Lingyun’s hand; that hand, wasn’t extended toward her, but extended toward Claire! But at this time, Leng Lingyun felt the same thing, an enormous forces dragging his feet, unable to use his strength, and his body slowly sinking down. The last thought he had before disappearing was that they had been tricked! This was a trap!
Snow rushed in from everywhere, flooding the canyon, almost filling it up. Huge, sharp icicles also stuck out from the snow in disarray.
After a long time, the place quieted down again. Only small clumps of snow fell down occasionally.
The four people that were standing in the canyon disappeared, the black five-pointed star matrix also disappeared.
“Got rid of several more of the Temple’s lackeys, haha.” A person in a black cape laughed at the top of the cliff.
“We’re not sure of that yet. Although sir priest’s matrix is very strong, it can still only teleport them to that place.” Another voice said coldly.
“Crap, why do you always have to ruin my fun. It’s not like they can walk out alive after entering that place.”