“Damn worms…..”, Zhang cursed as he slowly stepped on the squirming red worm. As Zhang’s foot went down the worm continued squirming about as it oozes out greenish liquid. After squishing the worm to death Zhang made his way toward his soldiers and the villagers.
While Zhang was off saving the villagers, Yuying could be seen standing by where Zhang had planted his halberd on the ground. On top of her head was a familiar looking arachnid. The corpse that was stuck to the halberd had been taken down by the soldiers and tied it up.
A blue aura was emitting from Yuying and covering the corpse. However moments later the aura retracted back into her body.
“Odd….” Yuying murmured as creases appear on her forehead and a frown appeared on her face.
“Let’s see what makes you tick.” Yuying murmured as she withdrew a short dagger
from her interspatial ring and placed it on the chest of the corpse. She then began to make an incision into the chest of the corpse. However as the dagger slit open the skin something caught her attention.
The skin around the area that she cut began bulging and moving. As Yuying was looking at the moving intriguingly something popped out from the cut that she had made.
A reddish worm could be seen popping out of the freshly made cut and before Yuying could react it shot out from the corpse and headed straight for her. As the reddish worm shot through the air and inched closer and closer toward Yuying something else launched itself into the air.
Moments later squishing sounds could be heard. And Silky could be seen biting into a large red worm.
“Phew…. Good Silky.” Yuying said with as she patted Silky. As if it was responding to her Silky rubbed itself against Yuying’s hand and then began devouring the worm by injecting it with Necrotic venom and liquifying the insides of the worm. Normally Titanic Golden Spiders only used neurotoxic venom that paralyzed their prey but when they prepare their prey to be eaten they use necrotic venom.
“Sis are you okay!!?” Ai yelled as she put her hand on Yuying’s should.
“Yuying are you alright? Ling said as she also put her hand on Yuying’s shoulder.
“What is that thing?” Ai asked with a disgusted face as she watched Silky devour it’s dinner.
“It’s a Goliath Heart Burrower Worm.” Yuying said confidently.
“In the Underworld I read about them in a book once. They were classed as level one demonic beasts but the term parasite would describe them better. Like their names suggest, they burrowed into the bodies of their hosts and incubate their eggs in the host’s heart which of course instantly killed the host. Although the Goliath Heart Burrowers were considered low ranking demonic beasts, they possessed the uncanny ability to control the corpses of their hosts.” Yuying stated as Silky finished consuming the red worm and moved on to the corpse.
Each corpse would be manipulated by an adult heart burrower along with hundreds of adolescent ones they link up and control the body by using each other as a replacement nervous system. But that's not the end of it, each adult heart burrower is mentally linked to their queen creating a hive mind.” She said as she watched Silking munching on the little green worms inside the corpse.
“Then how do we stop them?” Ling asked.
“Three ways of stopping them were mentioned in the book it read. First is to kill the worm directly while it is in the host’s body, second is to sever thier link to the queen by killing it and lastly do what we have been doing and incapacitate them. Besides these three methods I'm not sure there are any other ones.” Yuying said.
“But something is odd about the current situation. Usually Hear Burrowers can only be found in demonic beasts, only rarely are they ever found on humans. But so far we have faced thousands of them.” Yuying added.
“Madames it's time to move.” Lu Xun said politely toward the three beauties.
“Are all of the villagers gathered here yet?!!” Zhang yelled toward his soldiers and the villagers as he looked into the sky. A green flare could be seen lighting the sky quite a distance away.
Once he saw this Zhang shot a flare of his own into the sky.
Although he and the three beauties could tell each other's location and communicate through their magical transmission bracelets, he decided flares would be better to communicate with the army as a whole.
“My lord all of the people in our village were gathered up behind the barricade so everyone should be here.” A elderly man said.
“Okay let's begin moving out, we must regroup with the rest of our forces.” Zhang said as he began walking the the direction the first green flare was shot.
Soon Zhang's soldiers and the villagers began moving through the forest. The soldiers had placed themselves loosely on the edges of the group as to protect the villagers.
As he tries to lead everyone toward the rest of the army, a question kept popping into Zhang’s head. “How? Did so many people get infected by the Heart Burrowers.” Zhang thought.
A single colony of Heart Burrowers couldn't possible infect so many people. And for it to get to this point without any requests for help. It either meant that the ruler of the Black Wind Province was an idiot who wouldn't handle the situation before it got out of hand or the situation got out of hand too quickly for him to act.
“Senior do you know how this situation came about?” Zhang asked the village elder who happened to be the elderly man who spoke to him earlier.
“Young lord sadly I don't know what caused this situation to come about. To be honestly only recently have sightings of the undead been spotted around the village and only today did we get attacked.” The village elder replied.
“Hmmm has there been news of any big events happening in the province?” Zhang asked trying to to see if anything that happened could have caused the outbreak.
“The only thing that comes to mind the grand construction of the aqueduct.” The village elder said.
“Yes our lord the ruler of Black Wind city had started a huge construction project to divert underground springs of water from the mountains into cities about a year ago. Last I heard they had began to channel water from the springs into the aqueduct they managed to complete ahead of schedule. The water was channeled to a few cities and they were working on bringing the water to Black Wind City.” The village elder said.
“They must have awaken a dormant colony of Heart Burrowers during the construction in the mountains. The worm larvae must have gotten mixed into the water and was transported into the city. Then people drank the water with the worm larvae and became infected. And since everyone in the cities were infected no one was able to request help and anyone who did was cut off by hordes of undead. But if the village elder is correct then Black Wind City should be safe, at least for now.” Zhang thought but before he could say anything tens of red flares could be seen in the sky.
“Everyone move quickly somethings is wrong!!! Zhang yelled as he began taking long strides.
“General have our men abandon the carts and cross that shallow looking river with our horses. Once we cross to the other side we can easily deal with this horde of undead. Since the water will slow them down.” Yuying said to Lu Xun as she pointed to a river a short distance away.
Moments ago they had just fired a green flare and were on the road moving through the forest however they rode straight into a horde of undead. And to make things worst a horde of undead also appeared from their rear. But luckily there was a shallownlooking river to their right behind some trees.
“Right away madam.” Lu Xun replied.
“Once we reach a large body of water your water magic will also be strong wouldn't it sister?” Yuying said to Ling as they lead their horses toward the river.
“Of course.” Ling replied while tugging on the reigns of house to guide it through the trees.
Soon the army made their first steps into the stream. However to their terror on the other bank of the stream hundreds of undead appeared.
“ Form phalanx!!! Protect the madames!!” Lu Xun yelled.
“Water cutter!” Ling yelled as a blue aura envoy wiped her body and water from the stream floated into the the air and formed crescent blades.
Dozens of crescent water blades sliced through the air and diced a few corpses to pieces.
With a wave of her hand a pillar of water rose from out of the stream and lifted Ling into the air. From the air she sent down countless razor sharp blades of water.
“Quickly cross the river with thehorses!!!” Sun Ce yelled as he pulled the on reigns on his horse and tried to cross the water.
Despite being looking very shallow if they recklessly galloped into the water there was a chance they could ride straight into a deep pool below and sink. Which is why they had to be careful while crossing despite being in such a urgent situation.
Thanks to Ling’s constant barrage of crescent shaped water blades the number of undead on the opposite bank dwindled drastically. However Ling’s face turned from a rosy pink color to a very pale almost white color.
Constantly using the technique was draining her of essence very quickly.
“Ling drink the water that brother gave you!!” Yuying yelled seeing Ling’s face turn pale.
Moments later the pillar of water collapsed by before Ling crashed into the water below, some of it rose up and cushioned her fall.
As the water swirled around her Ling made a small bottle appear in her hands. After popping off the cap on the bottle and drank it the color on face her returned to normal. Luckily Zhang had given her the spare interspatial ring that he had and filled it with various useful thing.
“Madames!! This way!” A soldier beacons to the three beauties. They had managed to secure the opposite bank of the stream and were moving into the forest.
“Everyone quickly!” Lu Xun yelled as he watched as numerous undead were approaching their rear.
“Sis what are you doing let's go!” Ai yelled toward Yuying.
“One moment! I'm sending brother a message telling him to release the Titanic Golden spiders he has in the domain.” Yuying said as she fiddled with the transmission bracelet on her arm.
“Cmon! Quickly!” Ai yelled as she pulled Yuying’s hand before the message could be sent.
Shortly after the horde of undead that were toward their rear entered the water.
“Take them out as they try to make it up the banks of the stream!!” Lu Xun yelled.
Following his commands the soldiers waited on the banks of the shallow river and began dismembering the undead as they tried to walk up.
Due to the denseness of the forest the three beauties and thousands of soldiers had to walk while leading their horses. Although they had the option of abandoning their horses it would mean that they would lose their mobility.
As they made their way through the forest the moon was slowly replaced by the sun that was peaking over the horizon. By now the soldiers were all exhausted from all of the running. But they continued moving forward because the thought of taken over by a swarm of Heart Burrower worms could make anyone shiver and cringe in fear.
While the soldiers in the rear of the army followed those in front of them a loud tell could be heard from the front of the army.
“FUCK!!! It’s a dead end!!” The voice rang out in rage.
Once these soldiers from the rear caught up they found a tall and steep cliff wall of rocks in their path. Neither the beginning nor end of this wall could be seen.
“Fire the red flares! Warn our lord not to come this way!!” Lu Xun yelled as he shot a red flare into the sky. Soon to follow the first one dozens more were soon shot into the sky.
“we need to do something before they catch up or else we will be surrounded.” Sun Ce said as he stood next to Lu Xun.
“If we are corned then the only thing we could do is fight!!” Lu Xun bellowed as he lifted his sword into the sky.
“To the death!!!” He screamed.
“To the death!!!” The soldiers responded as they also lifted their swords and shields into the air.
As the soldiers screamed their hearts out Yuying pointed up the wall and spoke to Silky.
“Go Silky.” Yuying said as Silky jumped onto the steep cliff wall and climbed up.
As Silky made it’s way up the face of the cliff down below the undead made their way through the forest toward the soldier of Aurora.
“Protect the madams and prepare for battle!” Lu Xun ordered to his men. Currently ensuring their safety was his highest priority, if anything happened to them he wouldn't know how to face Zhang.
The soldiers stood shoulder to shoulder with weapons ready. They were no cornered and their only shot at survival was to cut down the enemies in front of them. These men were no more Like caged beasts ready to fight with every fiber of their body. If they had to bite the enemy to death they most likely would if it meant they could live another day.
“If we can hold out then Silky will be able to lower down strands of silk which we can use to climb up the face of the cliff.” Yuying said as she kept looking up the face of the cliff.
Hearing these words a glimmer of hope popped into the hearts of the soldiers which soon spread to the entire army.
“If we fight! We live!!” A few soldiers yelled.
“Attack!!!” Lu Xun yelled as he spotted undead closing in on their position.
“If not a lot of undead show up we can easily take care of all of them thanks to our numbers but if we attract a large horde then we are screwed.” Lu Xun thought to himself as he rushed toward the undead and began swinging his sword.
Thanks Nyx, Kevin, Alec for proofing and editing first half of the chapter. Also fully edited chapter will be up later. Thanks for reading. Support me on patreon and donations lol thanks.