Li Qiye walked up when this village head wanted to bring the withered into the village.
The villagers were alarmed after seeing an outsider approach and didn’t hide their hostility at all.
He smiled and said: “Gentlemen, I am sorry to disturb your fun event, but I have to do something. My apologies.”
They maintained their unfriendly stares at Li Qiye.
Li Qiye didn’t mind at all and reached for the new withered. This withered naturally tried to dodge from instinct and actually used the stepping technique of the Spirit Abyss. However, the application was very clumsy and had a thousand openings.
How could it dodge Li Qiye? It was captured right away.
“Roar!” The village head shouted and attacked Li Qiye with the wrath of a lion. Its speed was amazing and tore through the wind. This was a great technique from the Extreme Yang School.
“I want to catch you too.” He smiled and immediately suppressed the village head with a single palm. Despite the extraordinary move, it was still no match for Li Qiye and was subdued.
“Roar!” The rest of the villagers screamed and had furious expressions. All of them launched themselves at him.
Li Qiye didn’t give them a second glance and casually pointed forward. In the blink of an eye, Space Quarantine emerged. They looked like they were very close to him, but their space was isolated and couldn’t close the distance.
“Clank—” In a split second, Li Qiye used laws to pin both the new withered and the village head to a tree.
He summoned the Myriad Heavenly Cauldron and created a knife made out of fire that he then used to cut up the two withered.
“What are you doing?” The dissection was so grotesque that Ye Xiaoxiao couldn’t bear to watch any longer.
This didn’t mean that she was a coward. In fact, she had been trained in this regard before as a member of the Golden Isle. She definitely had no fear of death or murder, let alone the sight of blood.
However, Li Qiye’s mastery of the knife left her in fear. Not only was each cut accurate, they were exquisite and refined. It looked like he had dissected living beings of other races before.
With the knife in his hand, he gave off the sensation that he was a great butcher. His mastery of the knife was perfect and would instill chills in any spectator that were to watch, letting them catch a whiff of the carnage.
In fact, Xiaoxiao’s instinct was on point. Throughout the long years, Li Qiye has indeed done things like this, especially on the Ancient Ming. He experimented on the Ancient Ming with the immortal skeleton inch by inch.
He quickly opened their skulls with his perfect technique. He started slicing from the forehead and when he reached the skull, no harm was done to the muscles. What was even more terrifying was that after a section of their skulls were cut off, they were still alive without showing any hint of pain. They were still blinking like before.
Li Qiye carefully looked at the insides. After a while, he smiled and told Xiaoxiao: “Do you see what is missing here?”
Xiaoxiao didn’t want to look at all. Even though blood didn’t even come out from this dissection, its stench was still present in her mind.
She had to take a look after being asked and resulted in her taking a deep breath. Both the village head and the new withered had something growing inside their skulls. It was a plant that looked like a ginseng with roots. The most bizarre part was that this ginseng had eyes just like a person.
Such a creature was taking root inside the brain of these two as if its roots also grew to the joints of the body.
“What is this?” She felt nauseous after seeing the ginseng.
“You can consider it the soul of a withered, something similar to our true fate.” Li Qiye chuckled: “The body is only a physical entity, the most important aspect to us is the true fate.”
“What’s the difference between them?” She didn’t have a strong understanding of this particular subject.
In fact, few people were privy to this knowledge. Li Qiye only knew because he had always been paying attention to the withered. Each time he came here, he would dissect these withered for a bit.
“There is a big difference. In my eyes, a remarkable improvement has been made in the last one or two generations.” Li Qiye smiled and explained: “Look, the village head’s soul clearly grew all the way to every part of the body from instinct. Meanwhile, this new withered is different. Even though it is still trying to grow to the rest of the body, it is mainly situated in the brain, very similar to our three souls and seven spirits. Their souls are improving and can eventually become something like ours.”
After this explanation, Xiaoxiao finally saw the difference between the two.
“What’s the significance behind this?” She asked while looking at the ginsengs growing in their heads.
“It means that success is near.” Li Qiye spoke with certainty: “If they can become like us with three souls and seven spirits — a true fate, then it would be a perfect transformation.”
He gazed towards the distance and continued: “I don’t know whether they can be successful or not and I might not be able to see it, but that day will surely come.”
“What day?” She was puzzled.
He smiled in response: “Heaven Spirit’s disaster or blessing, hard to say.”
“What kind of disaster?” She grew curious as she never heard about this in the past.
He shook his head: “You don’t need to know. You will follow me in the future, so you won’t see it either.”
“Bah, who wants to go with you!” She grumpily glared at him.
Li Qiye leisurely smiled and created a fiery string from his cauldron in order to stitch up the opened skulls.
His actions so far have incited the wrath of the villagers. They howled and wanted to attack him, but Li Qiye’s Space Quarantine rendered them unable to do so. Even if he was only an inch away from them, their attacks could only hit thin air.
After the stitching job was finished, not even a mark could be seen on the skulls. It was as if nothing had happened.
“You deviant, don’t tell me you do this quite often?” She couldn’t help but ask after seeing his skillful method.
“You’re right, the number of those I have dissected might not reach one million, but it would be at least eight hundred thousand.” He grinned.
“Ugh!” She made a disgusted face and exclaimed: “Stay away from me, I’m sure you must have a perverted mindset!”
Li Qiye laughed and let go of the new withered and village head: “Sorry for the trouble, forgive me. I’ll be taking my leave now.”
Xiaoxiao had no words for his current attitude. Being respectful after opening their skulls — this was simply too unreasonable.
Li Qiye coolly left before the withered could react. Even though Xiaoxiao told him to stay away, she quickly gave chase after him.
The villagers were extremely excited to see that the duo was fine despite their vacant stares and quickly took them inside the village.
Xiaoxiao and Li Qiye walked on. Along the way, they saw many villages and even small towns. They were all created and occupied by the withered.
Moreover, these beings more or less inherited some memories, instincts, and even merit laws from their hosts. Because of this, powerful withered presided over the positions of the village heads and town lords.
As they moved forward, Xiaoxiao even saw an extremely powerful town lord with the power of a Virtuous Paragon. This was because the host used to be an amazing God-Monarch!
After seeing this withered, she commented: “Many experts died in the Divine Tree Ridge. I heard even Godkings died here. If all of them become withered and gather, wouldn’t that be quite a frightening force?”
“The strength of their former bodies isn’t why they’re scary. Them being able to rely on the ridge itself is the most powerful force.” Li Qiye flatly responded: “In fact, the withered aren’t evil, they just want to survive. Even though they don’t mingle with other creatures and even deny cultivators from integrating with them, they do not attack people under ordinary circumstances. The scary beings are the treecorpses. They are even stronger than the withered and have greater numbers as well.”
“Treecorpses? Aren’t they the offspring of the withered? How come this failed generation doesn’t live together with their parents?” She was a bit stunned.
“No, they do not live together.” Li Qiye gently shook his head: “If a withered is a near-dead, then the treecorpses are truly dead beings! The dead and the near-dead won’t live together, so the treecorpses stay together far away from the withered.”
She asked: “How come we haven’t seen any yet?”
“No rush, we’ll see them soon.” He chuckled: “At that point, you will see many, many treecorpses! If you go close to them, they will attack you first.”