Chi Xiao arrived two days later, and thus the team to explore the Gate of Heaven was complete.
The Dead Swamp was comprised of thousands of swamps of all different sizes.
These had existed for centuries. Whoever stepped into these would most likely be unable to escape and eventually drown.
It was hard to travel in the swamps, so the carriage and horses were left at the entrance, and the team started walking into the Dead Swamp.
Once they stepped into it, Shi Yan was on alert so as to avoid any dangers.
There were endless green swamps in the Dead Swamp. Of which, many of them were emitting a green colored air.
In some places, the air was so poisonous that people would rot to death as soon as they inhaled it.
Apart from the swamps and poisonous air, there were also demon beats.
The demon beasts had adapted to the environment. They would usually hide in the swamps and jump out to attack whenever people passed by.
Chi Xiao and Xia Xin Yan were taking the lead and avoiding all the small sized swamps.
Chi Xiao was a Sky Realm warrior, so he could avoid the swamp by flying in the air.
Though he didn’t feel fear, the others did. Even Xia Xin Yan could only reach Sky Realm when she operated her Incarnation Martial Spirit. Only then could she fly.
However, every time Xia Xin Yan used her Incarnation Martial Spirit, her vitality would be damaged.
Therefore, Xia Xin Yan rarely used it unless it was an emergency. She was quite cautious along the way, following Chi Xiao’s lead.
Shi Yan’s realm was the lowest among them, and so was his knowledge about this world.
Thus, after they entered the Dead Swamp, he kept mute, carefully observing the dangers in the swamp as well as Chi Xiao and other people’s reactions.
“There is a three-mile long swamp in front of us which we can’t avoid.” Chi Xiao paused, standing on a wet area and frowned, “This swamp should be the safest one around this area. Be careful, we need to take the risk this time.”
Wearing a rigid face, Shi Yan observed the swamp in front of him with furrowed brows.
The swamp was three miles long and filled with green mud. At the center of which there were pieces of dry land, enough for two or three people to stand on.
Some of those dry lands were dozens of meters away while some were only two or three meters apart. It would only be safe to pass this swamp by walking on the dry areas.
However, Chi Xiao’s next statement crashed his plans.
“Don’t even hope that the dry areas could hold people. It will sink even faster once you step on some of them. Many of those dry patches just float on the swamp and can’t sustain any weight. Once you step on it, it will quickly sink.”
Shi Yan turned serious in surprise, not saying anything.
“Don’t worry, I will test every dry area so that you can walk on the solid ones.” Chi Xiao saw through their worries and smiled, “You guys just need to follow me. It will be fine. But some of the dry areas are quite small, they may support my weight, but not three or four people. So we still need to be careful.”
Everybody nodded with a rigid face. Even Zuo Shi, who was quite relaxed before, got a little nervous and observed the dry lands before her cautiously.
“Miss Xia, there may be a lot of danger. Could you help me with your Sky Realm energy?” Chi Xiao hesitated, and looked to Xia Xin Yan.
Xia Xin Yan’s crystal eyes showed hesitation behind her veil. After a thought, she said, “Mr. Chi Xiao, if you can handle it by yourself, please do so. I will be quite weak for a while after using my Sky Realm energy. I want to save my energy for the Nine-headed Sky Snake, but not these swamps.”
Hearing that, Zuo Shi and Wu Yun Lian secretly frowned.
They assumed she didn’t want to help and regard them as her friends. Therefore, they were a little disappointed, though they didn’t show it.
Chi Xiao didn’t mind though, as he nodded, “Well then, let me do it. But you have to be more careful since Miss Xia isn’t able to help. Don’t step anywhere randomly without my confirmation. It will be tough even for me to save you once you sink into the mud.”
The group nodded together seriously.
“Hmm, follow me.” Chi Xiao took a light breath and flew over and landed on a dry patch.
He placed one foot on it and it sank immediately into the mud.
Shi Yan’s expression changed slightly with solemnness crossing his eyes. He suddenly realized that this journey may not be as smooth as he had imagined, thus he had to be more focused.
Chi Xiao was calm. Seeing the earth sink, he remarked, “You see, this piece can’t even hold one person. If you jump onto it, you will sink with it.”
While talking, he flew up again and landed on another piece of dry land. That piece was quite solid, not sinking at all.
“This is ok. But still be careful. It may be dangerous if more people land on it.” Chi Xiao stamped as he reminded others.
The land under him shook and slowly sank again.
“This can support three persons. No more than three people can stand on it when you pass through.” Chi Xiao explained and flew out again. Using the same method, he tested more dry patches.
Waiting until Chi Xiao flew a hundred meters away, Xia Xin Yan said calmly, “Let’s go.”
Then, she moved her well-shaped body and lightly dropped on that dry area.
After a second, she moved again to the next safe area and advanced after Chi Xiao swiftly.
The two huge men who were following her didn’t hesitate either, as they stepped one after another onto the dry areas to keep up with her.
Zuo Shi, Wu Yun Lian and Chu Ping followed up, lining along the road where Xia Xian Yan had passed.
“Young Master, after you.” Han Feng bowed to Shi Yan, “Be careful.”
“Mmm.” Shi Yan nodded, skipped forward, and slowly moved after Zuo Shi.
There was a light acidic smell upon the swamp.
After they advanced in the swamp for a mile, Shi Yan found some green bubbles rising out from it, and green gas appeared as the bubbles exploded.
“Be careful, that green gas is poisonous. Don’t breathe in.” Chi Xiao’s voice came from ahead, “We are all at high realm so it wouldn’t be a problem for us to hold our breath for a while. I will find the way as soon as possible, please follow up.”
Chi Xiao didn’t stop advancing as he was talking. Hopping on and off the dry areas, he kept reporting, “This is ok. But be careful, it can only contain two people…”
Shi Yan focused his eyes on Chi Xiao and remembered his steps by heart.
At that time, he quite admired the warriors at Sky Realm, for they could fly over this swamp without suffering so much trouble.
His desire for more strength and to reach a higher realm became much stronger.
With Chi Xiao ahead of them, the group found it much easier to advance. Everybody, except Chi Xiao, was rather relaxed.
They were all safe in this dangerous swamp where numerous warriors had lost their lives.
However, just as they were about to exit this swamp, Chi Xiao’s expression changed as he screamed, “Watch out! Something’s in the mud!”
“Pop! Pop! Pop!”
Three demon beasts wrapped in mud suddenly rose up from the swamp, and jumped toward Shi Yan and Xia Xin Yan.
This type of demon beasts looked like loaches, with needle-like teeth and sharp bones on their back.
Three demon beasts jumped out of the mud, as two of them dashed toward Xiao Xin Yan and the other one towards Shi Yan.
Shi Yan looked calm. Just as the demon beast was about to touch him, he stretched out his right hand which petrified immediately and operated his [Finger Spear] toward that beast!
(TL note: [Finger Spear] was previously named [Finger Gun].)
The demon beast bit Shi Yan’s right arm but couldn’t crush it. On the contrary, its head was pierced by Shi Yan’s fingers, green blood oozed out of its head before collapsing into the swamp.
Two huge booms came from Xia Xin Yan’s side.
Shi Yan turned back to find that the two demon beasts had exploded before they could approached Xia Xin Yan and fell into the swamp.
A numb feeling came from his right palm which was covered by green blood. Shi Yan frowned and took out a soft rag from his bag to wipe the blood away.
One after another, odd demon beasts showed up from the green, bubble-covered swamp; their numbers reaching about one hundred by a rough count.
Those demon beasts gazed at them with hatred as if they were about to pick someone to eat.
“Shi Yan, did you get any green blood from the Green Loach on your skin?” Chi Xiao suddenly screamed from the front of the troop.
Shi Yan wiped the green blood away casually and turned his eyes to Chi Xiao, “What’s wrong with it?”
“The Green Loach has too much poisonous gas in its body, so their blood is poisonous too and will rot your skin!” Chi Xiao was rather regretful, “I had meant to tell you after we passed this swamp, for the Green Loach rarely appears in this area.”
“Chi Xiao, what are you doing here again?”
A hairless ugly man covered in mud slowly stood up from the swamp. As half of his body appeared, he stared at Chi Xiao and scolded, “Last time you stole my Green Herb, now what do you want again!”