Due to severe overloading, Xuan Ji's wings were completely unable to move and along the way, they were covered in countless fake branches and dead leaves.
The way the group landed was as "hard" as it could be, not only shattering several pieces of slate, but also causing some of the fatter comrades to bounce a few times on the ground.
All the talk of "maintaining civility" was thrown out the window.
"My phone! I just got it replaced and now the screen is shattered again!"
"Where did the car keys fly off to? Hurry up and find them, that's a public vehicle."
"Who hung that key on a metal ball? Are you crazy? My head has been smashed into a weird shape...hiss, Your Majesty, your hair is tangled again!" Sheng Lingyuan's robe, made of patched-up withered vines, was caught by Ping Qianru's zipper, almost exposing him.
Luckily, he managed to cover himself up with a dozen green leaves that he had just grabbed from Luo Cuicui.
His hair got tangled up in Xuan Ji's wings, forming a complicated Chinese knot.
For a moment, the two of them were stuck, with Xuan Ji unable to retract his wing and Sheng Lingyuan unable to untangle his hair.
The emperor, who was probably out of patience by now, sat on the ground in his eccentric outfit, looking like an environmental ambassador in his shiny green attire. He had no expression on his face as he waited for Xuan Ji to untangle his hair.
Behind them, the mountain range shone brightly from the explosion of the mithril cannon, as its immense energy collided with the burning flames, causing a terrifying cracking sound and triggering a local earthquake. After the loud noise, half of the mountain where the altar was located slid down as a whole. Countless white bones turned into powder along with the exquisite stone pillars and beams, and the howling wind was mixed with mournful cries.
The illusions on the mountain shattered, and the paper-mache trees fell down in pieces towards the few people. Everyone ran for cover, but Xuan Ji couldn't release Sheng Lingyuan in time. In a moment of desperation, he spread his wings and covered them both underneath.
Suddenly, everything became quiet around them. Xuan Ji could hear the noise in Sheng Lingyuan's mind, but couldn't make out the content. It seemed like he was desperately suppressing a thousand thoughts, and his consciousness was only mechanically counting.
The two of them were in an awkward position, with Xuan Ji's wings spread out and the Emperor, whose hair was pulled, had to tilt his head to the side and almost collided with him.
Sheng Lingyuan's lips were dry and almost transparently white, devoid of any color except for the bloodstains that reminded people of the ancient legend of the "mermaid lamp." The whale oil was melted by the fire, and the clear flame of the wick was reflected in the translucent lamp oil, which was said to burn for millions of years without extinguishing.
The two of them were connected in mind, and as soon as Xuan Ji had a thought, Sheng Lingyuan felt it.
Even though the emperor had a mouth that could deceive people to death, he couldn't respond to this, so he silently wiped the blood off his lips and chin.
It was awkward...
Xuan Ji quickly averted his gaze and said, "It's just that the posture was too awkward, and, uh, it got in my eye."
Sheng Lingyuan paused for a moment, then pointed his finger like a knife and cut off the small strand of hair that was tangled in Xuan Ji's wings.
Xuan Ji's wings suddenly spread without warning, tilting his head back slightly. At the same time, a thought popped into his mind: "Isn't it said that 'the body is given by one's parents' and that ancient people avoided cutting their hair?"
The word 'parents' flashed through Sheng Lingyuan's mind, evoking a vague smirk. He quickly suppressed it with his strong self-control.
Just then, the shaking stopped.
Sheng Lingyuan lifted Xuan Ji's wings and brushed away the fake trees around them.
He glanced back at the altar of the Witch Clan, still unsure who was responsible for the chaos. However, the accidental destruction caused by those hidden rats seemed to have some benefits.
At least with the collapse of the Witch Clan altar, the dangerous spells inside were also blown away.
Zhang Zhao struggled to climb out from the side, breaking the silence with a trembling voice, "Director Xuan, what exactly is buried under that mountain?"
The survivors looked at each other in confusion, but Xuan Ji glanced at Sheng Lingyuan, pondering whether it was appropriate to reveal the matter concerning the witch people.
He knew that Sheng Lingyuan could "hear" him, but there was no response from the latter, who continued to calmly count forward, already surpassing 13,000.
Xuan Ji was a shrewd person and quickly realized that Sheng Lingyuan's "indifference" was a form of tacit approval...
He even had a feeling that Sheng Lingyuan actually wanted to make public the history of Dongchuan and the witch people, otherwise he wouldn't have allowed him to see so many memories of Aluojin.
According to this big shot's personality, if he didn't want him to leak our secret, he would have tried to silence him in the witches' tomb. But...if that's the case, why were the witch people erased from history?
Zhang Zhao pointed at Yang Chao and asked, "Also, is he okay? He's crying so miserably...What's wrong with you, young man?"
"I don't...I don't know..." Yang Chao lay on the ground, gasping for air, and managed to say, "I feel so sad...so uncomfortable..."
"Everyone, I have a million questions in my mind right now, but I think we should put these matters aside for now and discuss them when we get back," Wang Ze took off a fiery red feather that had fallen on his head, "Bird...Director Xuan? Is this the suspect you caught?"
He pointed towards Sheng Lingyuan, who lifted his eyelids to give him a glance. Wang Ze shuddered inexplicably and involuntarily curled his fingers.
Sheng Lingyuan, who had just counted to fourteen thousand, paused for a moment and thought to himself, "Carp."
Xuan Ji said, "..."
Who would have thought that this tough-looking guy would actually have such an auspicious bloodline.
"No, he's not a suspect. We encountered some unexpected circumstances and the suspect died underground. This is a long story." Xuan Ji waved his hand and then turned to look at Sheng Lingyuan. "He..."
Sheng Lingyuan lowered his eyes and stood with his hands behind his back, calmly facing the guarded gazes of Ping Qianru and Gu Yuexi. He was clearly wearing a garment made of dry vines, with green leaves of aloe supplementing to cover his body. But as he stood there, he exuded an aura as if he were still wearing a royal robe, commanding the nine provinces with a snap of his fingers.
Xuan Ji suddenly remembered the rooftop where thunder and lightning clashed, and the Yin Sacrifice ritual texts that covered the ground.
It was enough to make anyone tremble with fear, but he didn't seem to care at all. With a single sentence, "I have always detested being bound," he would rather be struck by lightning than compromise even a single step.
He didn't care about others' respect or fear towards him.
"He is..." Xuan Ji's thoughts raced, and as the words were about to leave his mouth, he had a sudden inspiration. "my sword spirit."
Sheng Lingyuan looked at him with surprise.
The three field agents of the Wind God, upon hearing the words "sword spirit," seemed to be stimulated and collectively shook.
Their three pairs of eyes were like searchlights, all focused on him.
"Sword spirit," Xuan Ji quickly concocted a rubbish story and turned to Gu Yuexi.
"I have a sword, a family heirloom. This beautiful lady has seen it at the Chiyuan Hospital, it's that one! Well, it's an antique. I was thinking of selling it online if I couldn't make ends meet one day. But then, I encountered the Yin Sacrifica ritual at Chiyuan last time, and I...well, I was too eager to take the lead and got too close to the thunder. I don't know what kind of energy reaction happened between the 80-odd thunderbolts and my antique sword...anyway, after that, I had a sword spirit."
Everyone listened in stunned silence, no one said a word.
"Sigh, let's not talk about it," sighed Xuan Ji.
He knew that the second captain Gu Yuexi probably suspected something thanks to her abilities, but he wasn't afraid. After all, the demon at Chiyuan and the current emperor really had different bodies.
Xuan Ji put on a show of lamenting, "Why did he have to make him look like that big demon who was struck by lightning? Who knows how many people he'll scare."
Sheng Lingyuan looked at her with interest and asked in his mind, "Why are you covering for me?"
"Shh," Xuan Ji quickly exchanged a glance with him. "You don't want to be locked up in a lab for 24 hours of surveillance, and I don't want you to go on a killing spree. Just cooperate and don't cause trouble."
The resurrected emperor from three thousand years ago was still a demon.
If either of these two things were revealed, it would cause chaos and potentially challenge people's beliefs.
In this society full of instability, how will the Bureau handle it?
Xuan Ji doesn't know, and for some unknown reason he's not too keen on thinking about it.
Gu Yuexi stared at Sheng Lingyuan carefully for a moment, her pupils changing shape slightly.
After a moment, she seemed to have figured something out, her expression becoming slightly puzzled, but her raised shoulders suddenly relaxed a bit.
"I... can't quite tell," Gu Yuexi hesitated, "but the sword he had at the Chiyuan Hospital... does have a similar aura."
After speaking, she noticed everyone looking at her, and Gu Yuexi lowered her eyelashes. "I have the 'X-ray vision'."
Upon hearing this, Luo Cuicui and Yang Chao were both shocked and covered their crotches at the same time.
Gu Yuexi is used to people's reactions to her X-ray vision.
She coldly added, "I only use it when necessary."
"Comrades in the aftermath department haven't seen much of the world, so please understand," Xuan Ji quickly excused. He continued, "My sword spirit knows a little bit of everything, especially ancient history. He even remembers many lost martial arts moves, but his Mandarin isn't that great...and his personality is terrible. Everyone, please try not to provoke him. He's like an antique, right? Let's be understanding."
Sheng Lingyuan listened on the side, seemingly indifferent and not sure if he understood everything.
He neither supported nor opposed the conversation.
"It's okay, I understand. When the ancient swords and spirits first awaken, their Mandarin isn't very good," Wang Ze said absentmindedly as he gazed at Sheng Lingyuan for a moment.
Suddenly realizing his lack of manners, he averted his gaze and cleared his throat before addressing Xuan Ji with a much better attitude.
"I don't like staying at headquarters. Director Xuan, I haven't met you before, so let me introduce myself. I'm the leader of 'Wind God,' Wang Ze. You can call me Old Wang if you want. I used to work with Old Xiao, but his team 'Thunder' took the upper route. They handle major security projects or foreign affairs, while we, the ragtag army that saves the day everywhere, can't compare."
Despite being part of the same special forces unit, Wang Ze's style was completely different from Xiao Zheng's. Every time Daddy Xiao appeared, he was dressed in a uniform, gloves, and had long legs.
He had the air of a domineering elite CEO, with a strong sense of distance. He was decisive and his team followed his every command.
Wang Ze, on the other hand, had a more down-to-earth personality. He had the aura of a well-connected gangster, with informants all over the country. With just one phone call, he could summon a group of henchmen to solve any problem.
After a brief introduction, Zhang Zhao said, "The local gangsters in Dongchuan have been causing trouble because of the old gangster, Master Yue De. The police station has been unable to do anything about it. This old gangster is so powerful that even their disciples act like members of the underworld. I bet they've been watching us as soon as we got off the plane... And what's with that mithril cannon they have? It's unbelievable! If you didn't know any better, you'd think Master Yue De had some kind of grudge against us."
Xuan Ji let out a sigh of understanding, "Ah, cutting off someone's financial path is like digging up their ancestors' graves. If what the suspect said is true, then not only are we cutting off their financial path, but we're also ruining their reputation. It's normal for someone to act out of desperation. We're all in this together, let's try to understand each other."
Zhang Zhao remained silent, unsure of what to say.
He couldn't believe that Xuan Ji, who was supposed to be a "thunder and fire" ability type like Director Xiao, could be so easy-going and understanding.
If it weren't for Gu Yuexi's trustworthy eyes, he wouldn't have believed it.
Just then, Luo Cuicui interrupted, "Comrades, excuse me for a moment. My phone got damaged by the water. Does anyone have a working communication device? We need to report this situation to headquarters."
Xuan Ji shook his broken phone in frustration and expressed concern, "Last time in Chiyuan, they just reimbursed me for this phone, and now it's broken again in less than a week. If this keeps up, will the Bureau think I'm not worth keeping?"
As Luo Cuicui took the phone borrowed from Zhang Zhao and dialed the number for the headquarters, she casually remarked, "Director, you're overthinking it. The bureau has regulations for us aftermath department personnel who are not on the front lines. To save on budget, each person is only allowed one reimbursement for valuable items per year. You have to take care of your own things."
As soon as he finished speaking, the Wind God agents saw the face of Director Xuan, who had just seemed like he wanted to save all living beings, change. A sinister aura emanated from the top of his heads, "These people are extremely insane and are insulting our civilized and lawful society. I think we should put everything else aside for now and go kill those old bastards together. Wang Ze, what do you think?"
The collision of the "mithril" and the "Nanming fire" created a mountain-shattering effect. Not only did it force the elite field agents of the Bureau to jump off the cliff, but it also stunned those who were secretly firing from the shadows. Some of the slower ones even got buried in the mountain.
"What's going on? Why is there such a big commotion?"
The leader, an old man in a Tang suit, didn't even go up the mountain. As soon as he realized that something was wrong, he immediately wanted to get in the car and run away.
"Master, did we just blow up the 'Forbidden Area'?" The disciple driving the car was stepping hard on the accelerator, his voice filled with fear. "Will there be any problems?"
The old man, who was also sweating on his back, was more sensitive than his half-baked disciples. Just now, he vaguely heard the strange sound of the mountain collapsing and felt the thick, unbreakable hatred and anger inside.
The old man in a Tang suit glared at his disciple with a stern look.
"Shut up, what problems could there be? That was a mithril cannon. Even if there was a Sun Wukong under the mountain, he would be blown up too! I don't believe in ghosts and gods. Even if there is karma, it won't fall on our heads. Give me your phone!"
As the old man in a Tang suit spoke, he snatched a cellphone and was about to send a message to Master Yue De in Penglai when the sudden braking of the car caused him to jerk forward.
"What are you doing? Are you trying to kill us?"
"Master..." The driver turned his head in horror. "Those...those..."
In the middle of the road stood a row of fake figures made of branches and grass, holding hands and blocking the way. The streetlights on both sides had long gone out, and the eyes of the fake figures flickered with a faint flame, making them even more eerie in the darkness. From hundreds of meters away, they could still hear the fake figures chattering and laughing.
The driver couldn't help but think of all the legends about the "forbidden area," and a sudden urge to urinate overwhelmed him.
Suddenly, the fake figures seemed to "see" them and fell silent, creating an eerie silence around them.
In the next moment, a laughter of an owl came from somewhere, and those fake people suddenly moved - not walking or jumping, but teleporting several meters forward out of thin air, getting closer and closer, just like a classic scene in a horror movie!
The driver's mind went blank with fear, and he instinctively shifted into reverse, frantically backing up and colliding with the apprentices who were catching up from behind.
The old man in a Tang suit almost had his waist broken by the chain collision, cursing, "Useless! Why run away? Bring the mithril cannon and blast those monsters to pieces!"
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