Book 1 (Spoiler alert, there’s only 1 book)
Chapter 40: The Hunt Begins
As the end of the year approached, the bustling liveliness of Qingyang Town gradually reached its peak as all sorts of people from different factions within hundreds of miles around flocked towards the town. The streets had never been so full.
The main players in this Hunt were the few major factions in Qingyang Town. However, there were also contestants from other factions as well. Of course, competition amongst the smaller groups was nowhere near as heated as the competition between the four major factions. In fact, most of these small factions just wanted to use this occasion to raise the reputation of their families or villages.
Regardless of their respective aims, the Qingyang Town Hunt was arguably the largest event held within several miles. Therefore, any younger generation member that excelled in this event would not only see his own reputation and status skyrocket but also that of his family’s.
The Hunt was held on the first day of Lunar New Year and the location was the Monster Arena situated on the outskirts of Qingyang Town. This place had some of the grandest architecture in all the town. The building was especially huge and it encompassed several kilometers of forests and right in its center there was a small hill that had been converted into a giant stage. Seated there, would be numerous guest, all keenly waiting to witness the birth of the newest champion.
Countless anticipating individuals waited with bated breaths as the minute-hand on the clock finally ticked down to the day of the Hunt. When it was finally time, the busy atmosphere of Qingyang Town exploded into tsunami of people rushing towards the Monster Arena. The entire place was filled with an awe-inspiring air.
“Is this the starting point of the Hunt?”
Asked Lin Dong, standing on high tower looking as he looked down in surprise at the dense forest.
Standing behind Lin Dong were the core members of the Lin Family. The one leading the group was naturally Grandpa Lin Zhentian, while Lin Xiao, Lin Ken, Lin Mang and the rest stood beside him.
Upon hearing Lin Dong’s query, Lin Zhentian beamed as he replied. As he gazed at the former, a look of happiness and content surfaced. After Lin Dong’s impressive accomplishments, he had started paying closer attention towards this grandson. During this period of time, he even suggested to teach Lin Dong martial arts personally. However, he was declined by Lin Dong as the latter wanted to focus on improving his body first.
In reality, Lin Dong did not need anyone to teach him martial arts since he had the Stone Talisman glowing shadow. Furthermore, he was afraid that if someone got too close to him, they might accidentally discover the existence of the Stone Talisman. That would not be good.
“The woods below are connected directly to the mountains. Thus, there will be numerous fierce and vicious creatures. Every ‘Hunt’ participant will wear a tag to identify themselves before they are thrown into the woods. After that, you will have to rely upon your own abilities to survive.”
Lin Xiao smiled before continuing his explanation: “Besides worrying about these wild beasts, you also have to devise ways to snatch ten tags from ten different participants. Only then will you gain the right to enter the giant stage at the center of the woods. Therefore, for this Hunt, you will not only be hunting beasts, but also, hunting people.”
Lin Dong trembled slightly with fear. It turns out that this Hunt was not as simple as he expected. In order to obtain ten tags, he must defeat ten different individuals. Only then, would he gain the right to enter the giant stage. Therefore, once the contestants entered the forest, they would definitely start fighting with each other causing a chaotic scene to unfold.
Furthermore, while they devised ways to obtain tags from other participants, they must also safeguard themselves from wild beasts. Therefore, even the slightest mistake would probably cause one to forfeit his life.
This was no ordinary competition but rather a dangerous event that risked one’s life. This kind of selection process felt a little cruel.
“There will be approximately one hundred tags. Therefore, only about ten individuals can make it onto the giant stage and many participants will leave in defeat. A truly merciless competition.” Lin Zhentian uttered as he kept his hands behind his back.
Lin Dong nodded. Just a ten percent chance, he had no opening to relax at all.
“Haha, based on Lin Dong’s current strength, he is definitely going to ascend to the giant stage successfully.” Lin Ken said with a smile.
Upon hearing these words, the smile on Lin Zhentian’s face brightened. Barely half a month ago, he got wind of news that Lin Dong had successfully advanced to Tempered Body 9th Layer. This training progress was even more remarkable than Lin Xiao at his peak.
“This time, our Lin Family’s ranking will rest on Lin Dong’s shoulders.”
At these words, a smile involuntarily surfaced on Lin Xiao’s face. As he patted Lin Dong’s shoulder, a look of gratification and pride surfaced in his eyes.
“Haha, Lin Zhentian. It has been a while. Seems like you are still alive.”
Just as the Lin Family were conversing among themselves, a laughter sounded out from nearby. Upon hearing this laughter, Lin Zhentian, Lin Xiao and the rest furrowed their eyebrows as the smile on their faces faded.
Lin Dong turned towards the direction the sound had come from only to see a huge crowd of people approaching them. Wherever this crowd passed, everyone nearby would quickly make way for them and their appearance was especially menacing.
Leading the pack were two people. One of them wore a light-grey silk robe and looked about the same age as Lin Zhentian. Both his eyes were sunken in and he gave off a cold and menacing aura. The other person was a middle aged man, and a smile was constantly plastered on his face. He looked friendly and approachable, however, those who really knew him, knew that this fellow was a smiling tiger.
“That old fellow is the Head of Lei Family, known as Lei Bao. The other one, is the Head of the Xie Family, called Xie Qian. These two are the enemies of our Lin Family and they are scum.” Lin Xia, who was standing beside Lin Dong, softly murmured.
Lin Dong slightly inclined his head as he glanced towards the two of them. He could faintly feel that the two of them were especially powerful. In fact, they should both be at Heavenly Yuan level.
As Lin Dong’s gaze swept over the two of them, he saw two other familiar faces behind them, Lei Li and Xie Yingying.
As if they could feel Lin Dong’s glaze, Lei Li and Xie Yingying immediately glared back at him. A smile surfaced on Lei Li’s face as he gently swung his palm in the empty air at Lin Dong. Evidently, he still remembered the slap that Lin Dong owed him.
“Old Man Lei, rest assured, my old bones will not enter the coffin before you.” Lin Zhentian smiled as he approached the two of them. Without hearing the tone of their voice and judging from their expressions alone, anyone would think that they were the best of friends.
“When one has many worries, it’s hard to live a long life…” Lei Bao faintly smiled as he scanned the members of the Lin Family. Finally, his gaze stopped at Lin Xiao and he frowned as he felt a powerful Yuan Energy within the latter. It seems like the rumours that Lin Xiao had recovered his strength were indeed true.
“When one loses so much every hunt, naturally one will be upset. This will definitely hurt one’s longevity.” Standing beside Lei Bao, Xie Qian uttered with a skin-deep smile.
As they heard the subtle insult in his words, every member of the Lin Family was enraged. However, with a wave of his hand, Lin Zhentian managed to stop everyone before he replied casually: “This time, I am afraid it’s going to be your Xie Family that will be upset.”
“I heard that a genius has recently emerged from the Lin Family? Let me guess, it should be this fellow?” Lei Bao’s sunken eyes suddenly turned towards Lin Dong as an evil grin surfaced on his wrinkled face.
Lin Dong felt his hair stand on ends when Lei Bao stared at him. This old man was clearly bad news.
“My son only has a small reputation, it’s hardly worth mentioning compared to the Lei Family.” Lin Xiao replied in an indifferent manner as he stepped forward and stood in front of Lin Dong.
“We’ll see once the Hunt begins. Just remember to prepare your gifts for us.” Lei Bao smiled as he lazily waved his hand before leading his people to directly brush past Lin Zhentian and the rest.
Lei Li’s footsteps suddenly paused when he reached Lin Dong. As he glanced towards the latter and the rest of the younger generation members of the Lin Family, he softly murmured: “Lin Dong, there are many fearsome beasts in the forest. You had better be careful. Don’t end up in their bellies, ok?…”
After uttering these words, a sneer surfaced on Lei Li’s face. He glared viciously at Lin Dong before he finally turned to leave.
“That bastard, he is too overbearing!” Lin Xia angrily retorted as she stared daggers at Lei Li’s back.
Lin Dong glanced at Lei Li’s back. He naturally knew that the latter was trying to intimidate him. An icy smile surfaced on his face as he muttered to himself.
“It’s too early to determine who would end up in the belly of a wild beast…”