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Chapter 281: Outwits

    Chapter 281: Outwits

    Translator: Novel Saga Editor: Novel Saga

    There were five black-winged gryphons in the sky. They were hovering against the wind with their wings outstretched.

    Each of these gryphons was twenty-or-thirty feet in size. The sharp claws of their hind legs and their torso bore a resemblance to that of a lion's. However, their head, front claws, and wings looked like that of an eagle's. The black feathers on their body appeared to be very thick and sturdy... as if they were made of cast iron. And, their seemingly incisive eyes were suffused with a glowing red radiance.

    However, the thing that seemed particularly unusual was that each gryphon wore a black helmet on top of its head. A blood-red crystal stone that was almost the size of a clenched fist was embedded in the middle of those helmets.

    The crystal stones appeared unusually smooth. They were giving off a faint blood-red radiance. The surface of the crystals seemed to be like that of a mirror, and it seemed as it was reflecting everything below it.

    Furthermore, the formidable aura that these five gryphons were emitting signified that these birds had reached the Xian Tian realm. The expression in their eyes was limpid. It looked distinct from that of ordinary demon beats. It seemed from their expression that they didn't possess low intelligence.

    Suddenly, a glimmer of blood-red light flashed in the helmet of one of the bigger gryphons among them. That gryphon seemed to have received some orders since it opened its mouth soon after. Then, it issued a hoarse and unpleasant cry.

    The other gryphons in the vicinity also responded with a cry as they heard this noise.

    The five gryphons dispersed after they had communicated with each other. And, they flew in different directions. One of them happened to pass through the sky over the mountain peak on which Shi Mu was hiding.

    Shi Mu's face gleamed with exultation as he saw this. He waved his hand, and took out the Sky Splitting Bow.

    Then, the Sky Splitting Bow began to expand with a flash of green light. In fact, it had expanded to half the size of a man in an instant.

    Shi Mu then flipped his hand, and took out three Wind Chasing Arrows. After that, he nocked the arrow. Simultaneously, he mumbled something, and three white chains emerged before his eyes. Then, these chains wound around the Wind Chasing arrows.

    The black-winged gryphon in the air felt a sudden jolt in its heart. The instincts of that savage beast made it feel a trace of shudder... In fact, it seemed as if it had felt that it was being closely watched by someone.

    It was about to examine the surrounding area when a black silhouette suddenly appeared in the vicinity. That silhouette swooped from the side at an insanely high speed.

    The gryphon saw that it was a parrot with multi-colored feathers. There were two feathers on the top of that parrot's head- one white and one red. Those two feathers were unusually striking.

    "Quack quack, big fellow, you are just a lowly servant of the Heavenly Demon Sect. But, you still dare to flagrantly roam around in our sacred Xixia country. I'm the noble 'guardian spirit bird' of the Dark Moon Cult. The Dark Lord has sent me to annihilate you!" the parrot issued a series of shouts.

    A flash of red radiance burst out of the parrot's body after he had completed his speech. After that, he opened his mouth, and spurted out a small mass of flames; it was aimed at the black-winged gryphon.

    The black-winged gryphon indeed possessed some intelligence. However, its wisdom hadn't grown to the extent where it could be compared with that of a human's. Therefore, it didn't seem to understand the meaning of the parrot's discourse.

    The gryphon instead shot a contemptuous look at Cai when it realized that the might of the flames was feeble to an unreasonable limit. In fact, these flames might even fail to lit-up timber...

    The gryphon waved its wings, and a strong wind swept out. It extinguished the little flame, and rolled out toward the clamorous parrot.

    But then, a sharp whistling sound rang out in the air... as if something was piercing through the air.

    It was the sound of the three green arrows which were shot at an incredibly high speed. They looked like three green lightning bolts. It appeared as if they had taken the shape of a character. They had reached to only a few feet away from the gryphon's body within the blink of an eye. They were targeting the chest and wings of the gryphon.

    Moreover, there was a person's silhouette underneath the arrow. The silhouette was supported by a white Qi cloud. It approached the gryphon at an astonishing speed.

    The black-winged gryphon got alarmed. It waved its wings, and swiftly changed its direction. Then, it changed its movement from a forward flight to a dive. Consequently, the three green arrows brushed past its body, and failed to hit their target.

    Shi Mu stood on the white Qi cloud below. The corners of his mouth curled into an arc as he pointed out his finger.

    Three white chains darted out of the arrow the moment they brushed past the gryphon's body. Then, they wrapped around the gryphon in a convenient manner... as if they were under someone's control.

    The black-winged gryphon exuded a loud scream as if it had gotten struck by an overwhelming fear. Its body emanated a mass of splendid black luminescence. This radiance then condensed into a layer of black protective screen on the surface of its body.

    The three white chains wiggled to tighten their grip, but they were blocked by the black light screen for some time.

    However, the flight of the gryphon had been greatly affected by these chains. So, the gryphon slid, and started to fall downwards as a result.

    Whiz whiz whiz!

    Seven or eight washbasin-sized fireballs emerged beside Shi Mu's body the next moment. They then started to spin. Then, they dashed toward the gryphon while issuing shrill ear-piercing sound.

    Simultaneously, Shi Mu bent his bow, and nocked the arrows once again.

    Three green arrows were projected once gain. However, they intended to hit the gryphon this time. They dashed toward the gryphon while streaking three green traces in the air.

    The gryphon was thunderstruck since it knew that it couldn't fly properly at the moment. It also knew that he wouldn't be able to dodge the arrows because of this...

    Therefore, it stretched-open its mouth, and puffed out a mass of scorching black flames. The black flames congealed, and turned into a beam. Then, the beam of flames knocked against the approaching seven or eight fireballs all at once.

    A burst of chaotic rumbling sound rang out in the air as the fireballs changed into billowing hot waves, and dissipated in the air. But, the black column of fire was also defeated and dispersed.

    Meanwhile, the three green arrows darted like a meteor, and struck the black light shield that was wrapped around the gryphon's body.

    Bang! The black light shield got blown to smithereens the next moment!

    After that, the white chains tightened their grip, and firmly bound one of the wings of the gryphon.

    The huge body of the gryphon was no better than a stone without one of its wings since it needed both of its wings to balance its body. Consequently, it started to fall downwards with an overwhelming momentum.

    Shi Mu's face beamed with happiness. He wielded one of his hands, and a streak of golden light burst out. It then coiled around the black winged gryphon's falling body the next moment.

    Then, a burst of blood-red light flashed!

    The huge head of the black-winged gryphon got separated from its body, and flew out.

    Then, Shi Mu waved his hand to recall the golden sword as the gryphon's body fell down to the ground.

    Quack Quack!

    Several other black-winged gryphons had also sensed this situation since they weren't very far. So, they had flown back under the leadership of a leader gryphon.

    However, these gryphons were too late to lend a hand even though they had flown back at an extremely fast speed. And, it had happened because Shi Mu's whole hunting process was very natural and unforced. In fact, this brief battle had taken only three or four breaths from the beginning to the end.

    Those gryphons hovered in midair for some time, but they didn't dive to attack Shi Mu.

    Shi Mu landed on the ground. A mischievous smile spread across his face as he threw a glance at the hovering gryphons. Then, he turned around and walked over to the gryphon's corpse that lay not far from him.

    ... ...

    Two nights later...

    In the Heavenly Wu Arms Shop that was situated on the West Kuang Street in the eastern district of Quyang City...

    "He he, I hadn't expected Dear Friend Mu's skills to be so advanced. You obtained an entire black-winged gryphon in such a short period of time," Xu Lu looked at Shi Mu, and said with a smile as they sat in the reception area.

    "I request Master Xu to take care of the rest of the things. I will come back to collect the tools after ten days," Shi Mu stood up and stated while cupping his hands in a respectful manner.

    ... ...

    Half an hour later... in a certain room... in the guest house building.

    Shi Mu looked at the scattered pile of goods, and stroked his chin. The trace of a thoughtful look could be seen on his face at this moment.

    These goods were the things that he had assembled in the storage ring.

    The greater part of these goods was either various kinds of ores or some demon beast's materials. Basically, these were the relics of the obese Taoist man of the Transcending Heaven Immortal Cult who he had encountered before.

    Shi Mu had noticed that he had been left with only one-thousand or so spirit stones after he had made the payment for refining his black blade and stick. Therefore, he had decided to sort out the things in his hand. He wanted to replace some of the items that he wouldn't use with spirit stones.

    Suddenly, a burst of black smoke bubbled-up in the room out of nowhere. Then, Yan Luo's silhouette gradually came into sight.

    Its whole body was covered with a white armor like before. In fact, even its head was covered with armor. Its body looked to be completely sealed-up except for the two clusters of purple soul flames in its eyes.

    Shi Mu was dumbfounded to see Yan Luo standing before him. Yan Luo lifted one of its hands, and extended a green flower toward Shi Mu before he could speak anything. At the same time, the delightful and melodious voice of a young girl resounded in Shi Mu's head, "Lend me your stick."

    "I don't have that stick right now. I have given it to a blacksmith for refining. It will take around ten days to get it back. So, why don't you come again and pick it up at that time?" Shi Mu looked at the green flower, and a trace of happiness surged in his heart. So, he explained everything to Yan Luo with the help of his spirit sense.

    "Okay," Yan Luo replied.

    "How about you give this flower to me in advance? Is that possible?" Shi Mu asked in a tentative manner.

    "Okay," the soul flame in Yan Luo's eyes flashed as it replied.

    Shi Mu had barely held out his hand and received the green flower when Yan Luo suddenly found something. Its body flashed, and it appeared close to the pile of goods the next moment.

    Then, it bent down and picked up a blood-red order token from the pile; it was faintly emanating blood-red radiance. It was the Dark Moon Order token that Shi Mu had obtained from Deacon Quan of Pi City.

    "Can you lend me this thing..." Yan Luo looked at that order token over and over again. Then, it said to Shi Mu with the help of its spirit sense.

    "There is no problem in giving it to you." Shi Mu didn't wait for Yan Luo to complete its words, and gave it a reply through his spirit sense.

    The soul flame in Yan Luo's eyes throbbed. It looked at Shi Mu, but didn't say anything again. It then received the blood-red token in its storage ring with a flash of grey Qi.

    Then, its whole body got enveloped by a mass of black smoke, and it disappeared into the void.

    Shi Mu gazed at the remaining plumes of black smoke as they gradually dissipated. Then, he shook his head.

    He couldn't understand why some memories kept floating in his mind; such as the memories of those nights when he was on his way back to the Black Demon Sect. He had made Yan Luo accompany him to practice in those nights. In addition, the memories of the time when he was in the Black Demon Sect's cave mansion also floated in his mind. He had blurted out everything that was on the back of his mind in front of Yan Luo at that time.

    Yan Luo's intelligence had been very low in the beginning... so much so that it had only been able to express simple things. But, it had been much closer to Shi Mu at that time than it was now.

    Shi Mu had learnt a lot of things about the Soul magicians of the Dark Moon Cult from his experiences over these days. So, he was very much aware of the processes used by the Soul magicians to strengthen their spirit pets. He had also heard somewhere that it could easily take more than ten years to promote the strength of the Dead Spirit creature by a small realm. Moreover, Yan Luo had only been an ordinary martial warrior in the beginning. However, it had ascended to an unimaginable level in less than ten years.

    The crucial point was that Shi Mu had never taken the initiative to care about Yan Luo's practice from the beginning to this day. Yan Luo had relied entirely on itself to achieve such an incredible strength.

    Shi Mu was very curious to know the reason behind this. But, he knew deep in his heart that Yan Luo would never tell him anything.

    "I don't know whether the promotion of Yan Luo's strength is a blessing or a misfortune." Shi Mu mumbled to himself in a self-ridiculing manner.

    He then decided to cast this thought aside for the time being. After that, he received the green flower in the Vast Earth Ring. Then, he got back to tidying up the things that were scattered in the room.

    Some time passed. Shi Mu had stored the stuff that he was prepared to sell in the golden ring, and the stuff that he still found useful in his Vast Earth Ring.

    He sat down on his wooden bed after he had wrapped up this task.

    Then, he drew out the green flower, and plucked a petal off it in a careful manner. The petal crumbled, and changed into a mass of cold and gloomy green vapor. The green vapor then coiled around his right hand, and started to seep into his body in a slow manner...

    Half an hour passed. A strong magic power wave suddenly burst forth from Shi Mu's body, and took the shape of an invisible magic-power whirlpool around his body.

    The magic power whirlpool submerged into his body after some time... as if it were a long whale. Shi Mu then opened his eyes, and a gleam of happiness glittered across his face.

    He sensed that the magic power within his body had escalated by leaps and bounds once again after he had absorbed the entire green flower. Also, he had made a breakthrough from the twelfth stage of the Art of Accumulating Spirit Power, and had stepped into the thirteenth stage like he had always wished.

    Moreover, the shadow of a third star had brightened in the cluster of cloud inside his sea of consciousness.
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