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Chapter 24 - Turned to Ashes

    - Ka! Ka! - The tree branches suddenly broke and fell to the ground. An unfortunate sparrow flying past also dropped to the ground, unable to resist the power of the gravity.

    It was as if a force field with a hundred mile radius was formed around the man in blue, trapping all the objects in it with its gravitational force.

    Nie Qian couldn't escape the power of the force field and her body suddenly succumbed as she was held onto a tree for support.

    "The gravitational force increased by ten times!" she exclaimed. The fear was evident on her face, as she gazed at Nie Tian while cursing his ignorance under her breath.

    As the man in blue with a yellow shield approached Nie Tian with a malicious grin, he said, "You little mongrel, let's see how you can move this time!"

    Under the burdening gravitational force, Nie Tian's nimble movements were abruptly interrupted. He was confused as he noticed an energy accumulating at his feet. The energy traveled from the animal bone he was gripping tightly, along his veins, towards his feet. The animal bone, that had just returned to its original form, began to heat up again. As the animal bone became hot, somehow Nie Tian's confidence was boosted and he didn't fear the advancement of the man in blue. He just gripped the animal bone tightly and calmly observed as the man approached him.

    "Where's my brother?!" he yelled, as he suddenly threw the shield at Nie Tian's head. "Woosh!" The yellow shield left his hand and flew in a perfect projectile arc towards Nie Tian. The shield emitted a stronger force field around Nie Tian, making it impossible for him to escape the imminent, head-on impact by the shield.

    "Nie Tian!" Nie Qian shouted in horror. It was at this moment, that the animal bone began throbbing and released an astonishing amount of heat. "Go!" Nie Tian threw the animal bone into the air. As the animal bone was thrown, the heat energy accumulated around his feet exploded. Nie Tian was no longer bounded by the gravitational force as his body was thrusted forward by the explosion of energy at his feet. In the end, he missed the shield's attack by a hair.

    A mad howl, that only he could hear, went rampant in his soul as he watched the animal bone transform into a magnificent fire, swallowing the man.

    The force field that was restraining him had completely vanished!

    The shield lost its owner's power and dropped behind Nie Tian, lying listless on the ground.

    Meanwhile, the owner of the shield was slowly eaten alive by the flame, as he was quickly turned to ashes.

    In the blink of an eye, the man was wiped from the surface of the earth. The flame then slowly condensed and transformed back into the dark brown animal bone.

    Nie Qian, who was in despair just a moment ago, stared in disbelief at what happened. She blinked to confirm what she saw. Surprisingly, after many blinks, the scene didn't change. Nie Tian was still standing there and the crazy attacker was gone, without a trace of him to be found.

    She was in shock. As she slowly came back to her senses, she mumbled," Dead. He's... been burnt to death? Turned into ashes?"

    Nie Tian walked over with a bounce, under the normal gravitational force, to the animal bone and picked it up. "Oh, my precious," he exclaimed as he happily stroked the animal bone.

    Only then did Nie Qian snap awake from the daze and yelled in horror," Be careful!" Nie Tian looked up from his treasure and waved it in the air, as he said with a grin, " Aunt Nie Qian, it's my precious. Why would it hurt me?"

    "Your precious? You... you can control it?!" She exclaimed.

    Nie Tian nodded his head confidently. "Of course!" He paused and pointed behind him, as he explained. "That guy's younger brother was also burnt to death by it. Not even a drop of blood was left behind. Only now do I understand why people would want to get their hands on Holy Weapons; a powerful Holy Weapon can really turn the tables in a battle!"

    In the past, he didn't take the pursuit of Holy Weapons seriously. He was physically strong. When he fought with Nie Hong, Nie Tian obtained victory just by physical superiority. Thus, he thought he only needed to focus on enhancing his physical strength. He thought, that a compatible Holy Weapon would not be critical in a battle. However, during this journey, the animal bone had already helped him kill two men in a row in life or death situations.

    Therefore, this experience changed his view on that matter. He realised that he was very fortunate to have a powerful Holy Weapon. .

    "Put that thing away!" Nie Qian took a deep breath. She still looked shocked, but she was slowly becoming calmer. "It's not safe here. We don't know if that hateful witch, Yuan Qiuying, has any more plans up her sleeve. We can study the animal bone in detail when we get home. For now, we must leave immediately!"

    "Okay," Nie Tian replied obediently. "Other than the shield, what else did the two guys leave behind?" she asked.

    Nie Tian shook his head and answered, "Nothing. Everything was burnt to ashes and nothing survived."

    "What a terrifying Holy Weapon!" Nie Qian exclaimed in shock. She mumbled under her breath, "What a waste. Things are kinda tight these days. It would be nice if we had something to salvage and pawn." She immediately stuffed the shield into her bag and said, "Let's go home!"

    "Yeah, let's go." Nie Tian didn't feel unsettled at the fact that he had just killed for the first time, even though it were two men in a row. Instead he was ecstatic. He would take the animal bone out and play with it as they went home.

    Every time Nie Qian turned around and saw him playing with the animal bone, she would tense up and unconsciously take a few steps away from him. To Nie Qian, the animal bone was a terrifying uncontrollable source of rampant demon flames that would go berserk, burning each and every living thing to ashes at the first chance it got.

    Before the sun set, they entered the city and went straight to the Nie Family Household. Back at home, Nie Qian went to look for Nie Donghai, immediately after warning Nie Tian to handle the animal bone with care. She briefed Nie Donghai about Yuan Qiuying's scheme and the disaster that had happened in the mines.

    "Yuan Qiuying!" Nie Donghai shouted in anger, after listening to the dangers they had faced on their journey.

    "That woman is too outrageous! Just because of a small misunderstanding, she wanted to take both of your lives! I must get to the bottom of this!" Nie Qian shook her head as she comforted him, "Never mind, the two men are already dead anyway. After this, that woman won't do anything reckless anymore. Dad, you aren't the head of the family anymore. The family is going to be in disarray due to the mining disaster. Let's forget about Yuan Qiuying and focus on how to handle the Lingyun Sect."

    "How long would it take for the mines to return to a functional state?" Nie Donghai asked solemnly.

    "I have no idea." Nie Qian smiled weakly. "It's all my fault. I had no idea that Nie Tian's animal bone would cause such a commotion in the mine structure. The way I see it, it's impossible to resume mining in the next two two months. No matter how, we won't be able to collect enough Fire Cloud stones for the Lingyun Sect this year."

    "Many witnessed you and Nie Tian going into the mines, so your uncle will most likely push all the blame onto you two." Nie Donghai was obviously anxious as the discussion went on. "Too bad I'm not the head of the family anymore, otherwise... I would be able to handle the Lingyun Sect."

    "Dad, I'm so sorry for causing you trouble again." Nie Qian drooped her head in guilt.

    "Nie Tian was able to train his skills to the sixth Lianqi level in the mines. That fact alone is enough!"

    Nie Donghai said seriously to Nie Qian, "And the weird animal bone that can unleash his fullest potential is worth all these troubles."

    "But, the animal bone is too powerful. I'm worried that Nie Tian cannot control it..." Nie Qian said fearfully.

    "I believe in Nie Tian!" Nie Donghai interrupted her.

    At this moment, Nie Tian was in his room. He took out the animal bone, mesmerized by it, as he sat on his bed.

    "Huh?!"

    ......

    Translator: Ace
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