Chapter 23: Return (2)
Translator: Atlas Studios Editor: Atlas Studios
Not far off, Barong shouted at Zhou Jing.
Mutant Blood Warriors far exceeded the fitness of ordinary people. Barong was the most heavily injured, yet he was still the fastest. He ran to the front, but when he turned around and saw that his companions were in danger, he stopped and threw out his weapon without hesitation. Unfortunately, he only had enough time to resolve Zhou Jing’s threat.
However, Baron threw out his weapon with all his strength, causing his injuries to worsen. He almost lost his balance and fell to the ground.
Luckily, Griff and another hunter happened to run to his side. They grabbed his arms and dragged him away.
The first few Subterraneans were smashed into pieces, and the ones behind them stopped in their tracks in fear.
Zhou Jing didn’t dare to hesitate. After taking advantage of Barong’s opportunity, he turned around and ran.
A few seconds before the next wave of arrows came, he finally followed the surviving hunters into the forest.
Thud! Thud! Thud! The concentrated arrows nailed themselves to the tree that he had just run past.
With the cover of the trees, the threat of the Subterraneans’ arrows was greatly reduced.
Zhou Jing followed Barong and the others as they madly dashed through the forest. After running for an unknown amount of time, the shouts behind them gradually faded into the distance. It was as if the Subterraneans had finally given up on pursuing them and returned to plunder the spoils of war.
However, they did not dare to stop to rest. After treating their wounds, they forced their exhausted bodies to continue moving.
After running for a while and ensuring that the Subterraneans were truly not chasing after them, everyone finally stopped. They were all covered in dirt and were in a sorry state.
“Is… is it safe?”
Griff gasped violently.
Zhou Jing was also panting heavily. The wounds on his body were painful and itchy, and the injuries caused his stamina to fall drastically.
Barong fell to the ground, coughing violently and spitting out blood.
He had already thrown out his weapon, and given the circumstances, it was obvious that he could not retrieve it. At this moment, his hands were empty.
“This group of Subterraneans are despicable and shameless! Sooner or later, we’ll exterminate them and burn their lair to ashes!”
Griff pounded his fist against the trunk of the tree, his face full of grief and indignation.
They lost two more companions, and only half of the hunter team was left. They had suffered heavy losses this time around.
“Cough, cough… We’ll talk about this when we get back.” Barong could not stop coughing. He was exhausted. He pointed at Zhou Jing and said intermittently, “It’s all thanks to you, you saved us.”
“Weren’t you the one who saved me?” Zhou Jing panted, a little puzzled.
If Barong hadn’t thrown the ax and forced the Subterraneans to retreat, there was a high chance that he wouldn’t have been able to escape.
Griff took a deep breath before he explained, “We wanted to stall for time and wear the white spider beast down, but looking back at it now, we would probably end up being attacked from both front and back before we could have finished off the mutant beast. We would be dead… Fortunately, you killed the white spider beast in advance. Otherwise, none of us would have survived.”
From the hunters’ point of view, they could see the crucial role Zhou Jing played in this fight.
If they hadn’t brought Will·Wood along with them, they would have been completely wiped out in the protracted battle against the mutant beasts.
Just the thought of being attacked by two groups of enemies made everyone’s heart palpitate.
Zhou Jing had indirectly saved their lives. Although they might not have realized how much he had actually helped, the hunters could not pretend that nothing had happened.
“You saved us. We will firmly remember this kindness.”
Griff had on a solemn expression.
So that’s what he meant… Zhou Jing exhaled.
Thinking about it carefully, it did seem to be the case. If they had not met him halfway, this hunter team would have met a grisly end in the forest.
Zhou Jing caught his breath for a while more before he shook his head.
“There’s no need for that. We’re just saving each other…”
He had only said half a sentence when his vision started to spin, and he fell to the ground.
Everyone was shocked.
Griff hurriedly squatted down to examine Zhou Jing’s body. Soon, his shock turned into anger.
“The group of Subterraneans smeared poison on the arrows. The poison has activated!”
The other two who hadn’t been shot were shocked and quickly went to check on Barong and the rest of the hunters.
They only saw the other hunter that had been shot leaning against a tree without even a sound. He had already long fainted. His body was hot, yet his forehead was covered in cold sweat.
Barong waved his hand, his face pale. He forced himself to focus. “Take care of them first. Don’t worry about me. My body is different from yours. I can take it.”
Zhou Jing’s vision began to blur, and he felt the pain in his body intensify. A hot, wet sensation filled his chest—as if his lungs were bleeding, he had a hard time breathing.
Originally, the poison wouldn’t have acted up so quickly, but since he ran along the way, the poison spread faster through his blood. Not only did the poison deepen, but it also worsened his injuries.
“Brother, hold on, don’t fall asleep!”
Griff shouted anxiously, patting Zhou Jing’s cheek repeatedly.
Zhou Jing tried his best to keep his eyes open, trying to maintain his consciousness. However, after holding on for a while, his consciousness gradually became muddled, and he fell unconscious.
In his hazy consciousness, Zhou Jing vaguely felt as if he was being carried by someone, walking and stopping, the terrain rising and falling.
It seemed that someone was anxiously shouting the name “Will Wood” over and over again. Sometimes they said things like, “We’re almost there,” and sometimes, they said, “Hang on.”
He could not hear anything clearly, as though he was separated by an insulating layer. It was like being underwater and listening to the sounds coming from above.
Zhou Jing woke up intermittently, but every time, he would quickly fall unconscious again. He did not know what was happening in the outside world and how much time had passed.
This continued for an indefinite period of time before his consciousness suddenly shook, and he became clear-headed again.
His view suddenly left his body as if his consciousness was floating in the air.
He looked down to see that Will·Wood’s body was being carried by Griff, and Barong, who claimed to be able to hold his own, as well as the other hunter that was shot being carried by two other uninjured Hunters.
The three of them each carried one person on their backs as they trudged through the forest.
In the next second, the figures of these people quickly became smaller in his field of vision. Zhou Jing’s view gradually rose. He passed the treetops and looked down at the forest from high up in the sky. The scene he saw suddenly became an endless dark green sea of trees.
They were at the edge of the forest, and beyond the forest, a village with smoke curling up from its chimneys appeared before his eyes. It was too far away for him to see clearly, but it was precisely the direction that Griff and the others were heading…
Before Zhou Jing could analyze this matter further, he felt a familiar attraction from above.
He looked up and saw a brilliant crack silently opening in the sky.
It was the rift that had sucked him in when he had arrived. It had appeared at his feet when he had descended, and when he had returned, it had appeared above his head.
Zhou Jing’s body became light as he was sucked into the rift.
It was the familiar tunnel of light again. The familiar colorful lights… The difference was the lights were ascending when he went down to the astral realm but descending during his return journey.
At the end of the tunnel, the starry sky gradually became clear.
At the same time, a stream of information surged into his mind.
[The projection has ended!]
[Actual time of stay: 6 days]
[Amount of resource collection and extraction: 163 Astral Points (For statistics, please expand/contract the menu)]
[Experience log has been recorded, and relevant exploration results have been entered into the illustrated handbook.]
[Cooldown till next Astral Projections: 12 hours in main body]
[Please select a placement for the Astral Apostle.]