Probably because they were leaving Gagor, therefore leaving behind the temple, Brainless Sheng had been very quiet the last few days, no longer clamoring for control of the body, which made Zhou Yun Sheng let loose a huge sigh of relief.
At the moment, he was sitting in a luxurious and comfortable carriage, carving a statue of the Light God. In doing so, Brainless Sheng would be quieter, after only four hours of prayer every day and finishing a statue, he would go to sleep.
The Pope was also with them on the road. After passing through the elf and beastman villages they would part ways, one visiting the dark forest, the other returning to the Central Church.
Zhou Yun Sheng knew that the continent was not peaceful, but the situation was even more serious than in Joshua’s memory. Demon fog seemed to be everywhere, in every passing town they would meet parasitic human beings. They either boldly slaughtered, or secretly made trouble to breed fear, disturbing the villagers’ quiet and peaceful lives with earth-shaking events.
More demon fog corrupted and mutated plants and animals were lurking in the dark, waiting for their chance to move. Land and waters gone black, withered vegetation, these were the scenes Zhou Yun Sheng had become familiar with.
If things went on like this, the situation would become more and more serious. As the God of Light, shouldn’t he be benevolent? Shouldn’t he spill out light to banish the darkness? Why does Adounis seem to be behaving like a spectator? Can he not fight the Dark God?
Whenever Zhou Yun Sheng had such speculations, Brainless Sheng would jump out to vigorously defend his Father, giving him a very painful headache, so over time, he stopped thinking about it.
The Pope’s team was falling in behind him. Every time they met a demon, the warriors and mages who guarded the Pope would work together to kill it, so the Pope never showed up, even the light circle that surrounded the group was held up by several other light priests.
After a long time, Zhou Yun Sheng finally bothered to speculate. He knew that the Second Prince and Boel’s crowns and rings were broken, so the Pope’s scepter should also be lost. The Light God had even rejected his destined lover, he wouldn’t be more lenient on the Pope. It was not enough justice to just destroy his symbol of right, the Light God could’ve possibly also recovered the power he’d given him.
Yes, in this motherfucking world, a light priest’s power could be taken away at any time, which was why Zhou Yun Sheng was not allowed to offend the God of Light. The God of Light manipulated the world with divine power, making all the creatures dance to his tune, who knows, maybe even the spread of demon fog was according to his will.
In this way, the God of Light didn’t seem so bright. Of course, he only dared to rapidly flash this idea across his mind, afraid of waking up Brainless Sheng and bringing trouble.
He preached the gospel all the way, dispersing the demon fog, killing demons, purifying the contaminated land and water, causing the name of Priest Joshua to be gradually known. Especially to the people of Sagya Kingdom, who had already dubbed him a Holy Man.
One day, they finally left the Kingdom’s land and set foot on the boundary of the elves and beastmen’s land. The demon fog’s situation there seemed to be more serious than in previous lands, along the way, large tracts of the forest was shrouded in black mist, just like another dark forest.
And the demonic and dark beasts were more frequent, and at a higher level.
Because there were no really strong light priests to prop up the light circle, the Pope’s team suffered heavy casualties, which also confirmed Zhou Yun Sheng’s suspicions. But he would never be kind enough to help the other man, instead, he chose to stand idly by. It would be best if the Pope died on his way back to the Central Church, he didn’t forget that the Pope was coveting his light scepter and holy robe with poisonous eyes.
A king-level dark saber-toothed tiger leapt out from the bushes and roared toward the team. Its crimson eyes were full of desire for flesh and blood, and it could breathe a strong corrosive black fire, as long as it touched something, it couldn’t be extinguished. Clothes, human bodies, weapons, and even magic tools would be burnt to ash.
Only the power of light could resist its flames from hell.
The priests of the Central Church had spent all their power of light on the way, even if the group of priests joined together, they could barely hold up a thin layer of light, and once it was struck by the saber-toothed tiger, it rippled like waves, then gradually disappeared.
In contrast, the team with the troops from Sagya Kingdom just had one young man sitting on top of the cart’s shaft, one foot dangling down, one foot bent, relaxing on the hand carved wood. He didn’t hold his scepter to summon light, nor did he chant any spells, but he could hold up a light circle brighter than the sun under heaven.
The saber-toothed tiger obviously felt the boy’s strength, so it always avoid him, and didn’t dare get close to his team. When it was occasionally hit by a warrior or mage and coincidentally landed on the boy’s light circle, it always felt like its body was about to burst from the pain, so it was even more afraid to get close.
As a result, the Pope’s team endured almost all of its fury, in just ten minutes, more than half of their manpower suffered casualties. A light priest couldn’t stand it anymore and shouted, “Priest Joshua, please help us! Don’t forget, it’s your duty to protect the Pope.”
Zhou Yun Sheng blew off some wood shavings and gently stroked the face of the statue in his hands, casually opening, “The words you just said seem somewhat off. The strong should be protecting the weak. I’m only 18 years old, my tittle is only that of a small light priest, how can my strength be compared with the 300 yr. old His Holiness Pope? You should ask your Pope for help, not me. After all, you are his men, not mine.”
The words rendered the light priests speechless. They looked at each other, then looked into the carriage behind them.
The Pope’s forehead burst out in cold sweat. Only he knew, as time went on, even if he didn’t participate in any battles, his body’s power of light was slowly leaking out. It was as if there was an unseen hand, erasing his light attributes bit by bit, if things went on like this, he would turn into an ordinary man sooner or later.
No one knew better than him about the contempt and isolation priests who lost all their power of light suffered, not to mention, he was once the superior Pope.
Along the way, he desperately prayed to the Father, but instead of a gift from the Father, his light power drained faster. He realized that he had been completely rejected by the Father.
At the moment, don’t even expect him to hold up a light circle, even a shower of light was beyond him. If everyone else became aware of this, he could only imagine the future that was awaiting him.
Go out or don’t go out? That didn’t seem to be his choice. The Pope’s teeth clenched and his expression twisted, he hated Joshua to the bone.
But as one of the protagonists of the world, he still had a little luck on his side, so, when he was about to open the carriage’s curtain, a light circle suddenly appeared over his team, extinguishing the saber-toothed tiger’s black fire. Then, several burly beastmen and beautiful elves appeared in the light circle as if out of thin air.
Their levels were in the middle of king level, so together they could deal with the peak king level dark beast without difficulty. After some back and forth, a group of light arrows pierced between the dark beast’s eyebrows, killing it.
Demon fog quickly corroded the dark beast’s body, only leaving behind its black animal nucleus, which shone with an ominous light under the sunlight. If they let another animal swallow it, it would turn it into another dark beast.
An elf wearing a white priest’s robe gracefully jumped down from a tree, singing a purification spell. The demon fog within the animal nucleus dispersed, then he picked it up and handed it to his companions.
He had long, ankle-length blonde hair and emerald-green eyes, he was also holding a short scepter, its top inlaid with three light stones. His status was second only to the Pope, the elf clan’s High Priest – Bowen Derek.
Because the elf clan didn’t like to interact with humans, their temple was independent of the Central Church. Their High Priests were not governed by the Church, and therefore didn’t follow the Bishop’s name.
But Bowen and the Pope were not enemies, in fact, they had quite a harmonious friendship.
He glanced at the boy who had refuse to assist with cold eyes, then entered the Pope’s carriage.
“Herman my old friend, are you okay?” He whispered.
The Pope smiled bitterly, “I’m afraid I’ve been better. I got injured fighting a high-rank demon, the wound will take a long time to heal.” He said this while pulling open his robe, letting Bowen see the huge black hole in his chest, a wound from demon fog erosion.
This was his arrangement. He knew who saved Boel, and also knew just how corrupt the demon’s fog was, so he’d collected some demon fog into a sword and stabbed himself in the chest, letting all the demon fog pour in. Although the wound was very painful, it could help him cover up his lack of strength, and once he went back to the Central Church, there was naturally a large amount of holy water to cleanse the demon fog.
Bowen observed the wound intently, then his face suddenly changed, “This demon fog is so overbearing, I’m afraid that only a Devil King of the Dark Abyss could leave such a wound behind.”
Devil King? Far greater than that! The Pope forced a smile.
Bowen immediately cast a few healing techniques, saw that the wound was slightly easing, then whispered, “Boel is in our tribe’s land. I heard you were plotted against by a priest named Joshua? He arrived at our doorsteps with very heavy injuries, such a good person, why would anyone be willing to hurt him? What did you experience?”
Boel’s description was very vague, but because he always revealed a horrified expression when trying to talk about it, and even kept waking up screaming from endless nightmares, the Elf King and the High Priest didn’t dare probe him too much, so they only knew he had an encounter with a boy named Joshua.
The elves and beastmen originally lived in different lands, but because the mainland was being eroded by the demon fog, they had to move into the same forest. They knew that only with someone else to watch their backs and help, could the remaining three races survive. The beastmen also learned of Boel’s plight and felt endless heartache.
Before they even met, the two clans had already declared Joshua an enemy.
The Pope’s eyes flashed, then he sighed, “It’s just a matter of jockeying. Joshua was supposed to be the next Bishop of Sagya Kingdom, but because of Boel’s arrival, he lost his opportunity …..” He didn’t elaborate on purpose, keeping the details allusive. He knew that the elves have always been a prideful and forthright race, they were very impatient with these types of sneaky schemes.
Bowen frowned, his eyes filling with disgust, and sure enough, he didn’t ask for elaboration.
“Speaking of which, the other team is led by Priest Joshua. You should’ve seen him out front, haven’t you?” The Pope pointed outside to the opposite carriage.
“Was that him? No wonder! And such a man can be called a light priest?” Bowen’s impression of the boy fell directly to the bottom.
The beastmen who’d arrived were deliberately making things difficult for the boy, they didn’t bother with niceties.
“Why didn’t you help? You clearly had the capacity to spare help, didn’t you?” A burly beastman walked up to Zhou Yun Sheng’s carriage and asked. The beastmen had very upfront characters, they bluntly said whatever was on their minds.
Zhou Yun Sheng lightly glanced at him, his deep blue eyes and facial features were more beautiful than an elf’s, causing the beastmen to be slightly stunned.
An elf, who was guarding the carriage, heard the dialogue between the High Priest and the Pope and immediately drew a light arrow from his light enchanted quiver, aimed it at the boy and shouted, “He’s the Joshua who attacked Boel!” His voice didn’t fade before he launched the arrow.
Boel was the elves and the beastmen’s great benefactor, the shout shook all those present, and they immediately took up weapons to attack.
Zhou Yun Sheng sneered, lifted an index finger, and summoned a sharp golden light sword to split all the arrows in half. Without even chanting a spell, he instantly summoned a row of light arrows and launched them, turning all the king level archers into sieves. He didn’t attack their vitals, just pierced their limbs, leaving them paralyzed in a pool of blood.
“Herman, you and Boel were rejected by the Father. He took back the light in your body, right? No matter how many lies you use to cover it up, sooner or later, your dark heart will be exposed for the world to see. I, Joshua, disdain to travel with you fools. Goodbye, I hope you’ll be able to keep your life.” He finished this sentence and picked up his knife to carve statues again.
The warriors and the mages on his team got up from the ground and neatly continued the procession, sneering and laughing mockingly. One third of the forest had been covered by demon fog, it was full of dark beasts and devil plants, even if these people had intact limbs they would struggle to survive, not to mention now.
“Too conceited!” Bowen couldn’t help but jump out of the carriage, summoning his huge light sword to attack.
When the sword reached the head of the convoy, a burst of bright golden light suddenly appeared, swallowing the sword until it vanished. The wrath of one of the most powerful light priests in the continent was easily swallowed, and not even a small thump was heard.
When the sounds of hoofs faded away, Bowen finally recovered from his shock. He immediately walked to his companions to see their wounds.
Round wounds were spilling blood, the border of the wounds were burnt coal black, a residual effect of being attacked by pure light power. Bowen cast several healing techniques, but he failed to heal even half the wounds.
“How can he have such a mighty power? This shouldn’t be possible.” Bowen looked suspiciously at the Pope. A man who was dark inside was unable to gain the favor of the Father and be gifted with such powerful light.
The Pope had long prepared for such a question, he said with some difficulty, “Didn’t you see his face? Didn’t you notice his unique hair and eye color? He is one of the Father’s most beloved kind of children.”
Bowen shook his head in denial, “No, the Father would never be so superficial. He wouldn’t favor a despicable person just because of their appearance. Herman, don’t say these kind of words in the future.” He was still doubtful, but he no longer pursued it.
At that moment, the light priests that were following the Pope suddenly opened, “His Holiness the Pope, Lord Bowen, we have decided to follow Priest Joshua and travel the mainland, this means goodbye.” One finished speaking and bowed, then they ran to catch up to the convoy in front.
Some of the warriors and mages in the know also immediately left. They’d witnessed the splendor on the day of Priest Joshua’s baptism. He’d slowly walked out of the golden holy pool wearing the holy robe of God, surrounded by countless golden lights, as if a god had fallen into the world. If they had to use disrespectful words to describe it, his momentum didn’t pale in comparison to the Father.
The Father rained red rose petals from the sky for him, anyone with sense could clearly feel his warm love for the child. One was a powerful priest destined to be with God in heaven, the other was a Pope rejected by the Father and covering it up with lies, the reason they changed allegiance was self-evident.
But they wouldn’t tell the truth to these elves and beastmen. Everyone in the continent knew that elves and beastmen were the most stubborn races, once they believed in something, they would never change, unless proven wrong by indisputable facts.
From their words and deeds just now, after jailbreak, Boel was most likely hiding in their land. It was blasphemy to protect someone who had been rejected by the Father, they would pay the price sooner or later, so it was best to stay far away from them.
The Pope stared gloomily at the retreating backs of the group of people, then turned back to see Bowen looking at him with inquiring eyes.
He pretended to wave a weary hand, “Let’s leave. They have been bewitched by Joshua.”
Bowen removed his eyes and led everyone on the road in silence. Several of the wounded were intimidated by the boy’s strength and couldn’t get rid of the mountain like oppression for a long time.
Zhou Yun Sheng’s chosen guide was human, he was not familiar with the elves’ territory, so they wandered around for a long while, and after three or four days, they somehow fell behind Bowen and the others. But he always supported the light circle and eliminated any brave dark beasts and devil plants, so even though they were traveling in circles, the journey was very laidback. He didn’t accept the Pope’s ex-crew members, but he didn’t drive them away either, he just silently gave them asylum.
This certainly wasn’t something cold-blooded Zhou Yun Sheng would do, but the decision of Brainless Sheng. He was gentle and kind, sensitive and fragile, the most beautiful words in the world could be used to describe him, his character and Rational Sheng’s were the opposite.
He would occasionally come out from the subconscious, rest his head on the window sill and look out at the world with curious eyes, then he would hold the Light God’s statue in devout prayer.
At the moment, he was preparing to pray when he saw a thick black mist ahead, covering all the trees and the sky, a faint fluttering sound echoing.
The black fog was slow moving forward, approaching the team spread out in front. Everyone took a closer look, then couldn’t help but reveal horrified expressions. Where was this a black fog? It was a mass of many, many demon fog infected butterflies. They could spray venom from their mouths and their wings dropped poisonous powder scales. If you encountered one or two, you could easily deal with them, but when you met such an overwhelming group, you could only wait to be corroded into a pool of blood.
Wherever they flew over, it would become a pit of death, even the mighty dark beasts and devil plants were indiscriminately destroyed.
Everyone immediately turned around to prepare for retreat, but a clear voice came out from the carriage, “Gather around me, do not leave my light circle.”
A semi-circular golden barrier shrouded the team, and all the butterflies that hit the barrier dissipated into dust. The team slowly moved forward along the opened up road, everything seemed so quiet and laid back without the rumbling of flapping wings.
Zhou Yun Sheng opened up the carriage curtain and sat next to the guide, holding a statue of the Father in prayer. No matter how terrible a demon they came a cross, no matter how dark the outside world was, because of the existence of his Father, he was fearless. The golden light barrier radiated a more brilliant light because of his devout faith, and it even faintly dispersed the black mist.
But butterflies were phototactic creatures, they wouldn’t run away because of the destructiveness of the barrier, instead, they gathered in denser crowds. As soon as a group disappeared in smoke, another set would take their place, over time, Zhou Yun Sheng’s team became the focal point of the black mist, greatly reducing the pressure on the other travelers nearby.
Bowen’s light circle was only a thin layer between them and the butterflies, so they were blinded under the butterflies’ attacks. The power of light in his body was running out, and even his scepter was barely lighting up, his forehead and back was slick with sweat.
It’s unknown when it started, but the Elf Forest had recently become increasingly dangerous, and it seemed to be trying to assimilate with the dark forest. He’d gone through many disasters, but this was the first time he felt the fear of death. He knew that before long, his light circle would completely disappear, and everyone would be eaten alive by the butterflies and turn into pools of blood.
He anxiously looked around his surroundings and noticed a sudden flash of bright golden light ahead, he immediately shouted, “There’s a light priest in front, let’s run!”
The crowd immediately abandoned the carriage and ran towards the light source.
“What, it’s you?!” After seeing the people inside the light barrier, Bowen felt extremely surprised.
Zhou Yun Sheng had just finished his prayers, he glanced at them with a mild expression. If he was Rational Sheng, he certainly wouldn’t give them a helping hand, but the current him was not interested in seeing pointless death. He didn’t speak, he just slightly waved his hand to expand his barrier a few yards, enveloping Bowen’s team.
A warm and pure light power flowed in the air, in complete contrast to the darkness outside. Bowen could even sense a trace of devout faith from the air that had not yet dissipated, faint godly sounds echoed in the sky, causing his body to unconsciously relax.
He looked at the boy with a bewildered and uncertain look, he couldn’t believe that such a gentle and beautiful teenager, as calming as the dawn, was the same despicable person that Boel and the Pope talked about.
The men who had been seriously injured by the boy were afraid to breathe and speak. The atmosphere inside the light circle was too solemn, as if they were not in the wilderness, but in a small temple, causing everyone to be on their best behaviors.
Zhou Yun Sheng saved them, but he didn’t want to talk to them, he took out the statue and slowly carved his Father face, his blue eyes filled with warm love.
Bowen’s mood couldn’t be describe as surprised, but horrified. Without the use of a scepter’s blessing, and without chanting spells, the boy could hold up such a huge and strong light circle, and he didn’t even have to focus on holding it. His strength must be far beyond his imagination. And, he’d heard that the boy was only 18 years old, a new adult, where did such a strong power come from?
He thought about it and asked out loud, not expecting an answer, but the boy actually calmly replied, “I soak in the trial pool every day for practice.”
As soon as these words were said, Bowen fell silent, after thinking for a moment he glanced at the Pope. The Pope’s complexion had changed, then he suddenly shouted, “That’s impossible!”
Since 800 years ago, no light priest could enter the trial pool. Those who attempted it were all burned to ashes. According to legend, only people with the purest souls could survive.
Bowen had also tried it, but he was only able to dip in a finger before he had to take it out to escape the severe pain. He’d learned that his heart and soul were not pure, and for a long time afterward, he was very ashamed of that.
If the boy could really soak in the trial pool and remain unscathed, he couldn’t be the kind of person the Pope and Boel had described. Maybe he was being deceived!
He tried to give his old friend a little trust, but when his eyes touched the ground, he was once again deeply shaken. Everywhere the boy’s light barrier enveloped, where the demon fog had stopped touching, the grass had turned back into a green color, and the flowers were competing to bud and blossom in front of the boy. The demonic butterflies thundered as they rushed over, then they quietly burst into dust, and the highly toxic demon fog contained within them was purified.
So holy, the power to recover the life force of living things is not the power of light, it’s divine power!
Thinking of this, Bowen’s body completely froze. Perhaps he was looking at a demigod or even a god, and he and his tribe had tried to kill him. Light God above, please tell me it’s not true!
On top of the cart’s shaft – 車轅 – cheyuan- shaft. It’s the two pieces of straight wood used to connect to the animals pulling the cart. I think.