Chapter 906: Cursed Again
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
The Supreme Oracle Emperor Haozun had sent to deliver the jade scapegoat puppets to Wu Qi was Long Mo, who had just awakened from the Temple of Revered Elders. He was the Grand Oracle of the Directorate of Celestials under the Human Emperor seventy-seventh generations ago, a formidable Oracle who voluntarily went to hibernation when he was left with some 130 years to live, and became one of Great Yu’s strategic forces.
The surname ‘Long’ had a very special meaning in Great Yu. Among the common people, many used it as their surname, but in the imperial court, only thirteen branches of people had ‘Long’ as their surname, and all of them were made up of hybrids of humans and dragons. They were collectively known as the Thirteen Descendants of the Dragon, and were well-known reclusive clans in Great Yu.
The so-called reclusive clans were families that rarely appeared in public, who lived in the shadows and undertook all kinds of secret tasks for Great Yu. The Thirteen Descendants of Dragon were the clans who raised dragons. In fact, all the mounts and beast souls of dragons in Great Yu were provided by them. It was said that even now, many of their members married with dragons who had cultivated human forms and gave birth to mixed-blood children with strong dragon bloodline, who possessed unique innate talents different from the dragons and human race.
Long Mo was a mixed-blood with an exceptionally strong dragon bloodline. On his forehead were two horny protrusions about the size of a baby’s fist, which were constantly giving off a faint draconic aura. They were obviously immature dragon horns. He also had the majestic, cold, merciless, golden pupils of the dragon, which would change from round to oval shape when shone with strong light. There were even small blue dragon scales on the back of his hand. All this showed his unique bloodline.
Long Mo held a lofty place in the Temple of Revered Elders, and because of his unique bloodline, Buddha Sole’s mystic art and poisons did not hurt him. So, after both the Directorate of Celestials and the Secret Palace suffered heavy losses, Emperor Haozun—who was in dire need of formidable experts—woke up a group of revered elders from the Thirteen Descendants of Dragon led by Long Mo and asked them to take the lead.
Since the lifespans of these revered elders were running out, Emperor Haozun brought some Langxuan fruits that grew only in Mount Kunlun through some unknown route, adding nearly a thousand years of life to each of them. By doing so, he somewhat alleviated Great Yu’s current shortage of high-end power.
Sitting in the main hall of Wu Qi’s flagship, Long Mo’s glances always drifted over to Ao Buzun, whether intentionally or not.
As someone from the Thirteen Descendants of Dragon, Long Mo had seen many powerful dragons. Lord Xiansheng and Catfish were both powerful demon immortals cultivated from flood dragons, so he was very familiar with their auras, and he was not too interested in them. But, Ao Buzun gave him a strange feeling. It was a superior, inviolable feeling, the feeling he had once felt when he first met the ancestors of his branch many years ago, which made him nervous but warm and admiring at the same time.
Long Mo twitched his mouth and told himself in his heart that it was just a delusion. Ao Buzun was sitting there with a rakish look, and his body was twisting and turning from time to time like someone with a cramp. No matter how Long Mo looked at him, he was no more than a little demon who had just taken his human form. How could someone like this exude the dignity, solemnity, and inviolability of the elders of the dragon clan?
After giving Ao Buzun a deep, long look, Long Mo took three hundred palm-sized jade figurines out of his sleeve and handed them all to Wu Qi. “King Dong Hai,” he said in a low voice, “distribute these scapegoat puppets to the important military and civil officials of Dong Hai. They are treasures crafted at great expense by the Secret Palace over the years, each capable of withstanding nine curses from ordinary members of the forbidden clans, or a curse their elders cast with all their might.”
Upon hearing this, Wu Qi quickly distributed the puppets to the people in the hall, especially Princess Zhang Le, who was forced to take three. When each person dropped a drop of blood on the puppet, they felt a connection with it. From then on, if someone cursed them, these puppets would take their places and bear the full power of the curses.
These jade scapegoat puppets were only a small part of all the things Long Mo brought with him. He also brought a wealth of information about the forbidden clans, the spells and incantation gestures commonly used by them, as well as the methods of dealing with these spells. There were a total of 124 jade slips that were as small as a palm, but contained a great deal of information about the forbidden clans.
Princess Zhang Le took over the jade slips. With this information, at least Dong Hai would no longer be ignorant about the so-called forbidden clans. As long as she could figure out the various spells and curses recorded in them, the Directorate of Celestials in Dong Hai would be able to come out with all kinds of countermeasures, making sure that no one in Dong Hai would be attacked by them again.
Long Mo’s original plan was to return to Liangzhu when he had handed the things to Wu Qi. However, because of the extremely strange aura emanated from Ao Buzun, he stayed back on his own initiative and explained to Wu Qi why the curses of the forbidden clans were so powerful.
Wu Qi, Princess Zhang Le, and the others listened to him as he told them all kinds of unheard secrets.
If truth be told, the forbidden clans, like the Thirteen Descendants of Dragon, were intrinsically hybrid descendants of humans and other species. The Thirteen Descendants of Dragon were the hybrids of humans and dragons, and when the Ancient Great Saints created humans, they had incorporated the dragon’s blood into the human body. Therefore, human beings could be regarded as descendants of dragons, and producing mixed-blood offspring with the noble dragons was not rejected by the human race. Instead, they viewed it as an honorable deed.
The forbidden clans, on the other hand, did not mix their bloodline with those of the noble bloodlines such as the dragon or phoenix. They had communicated with the Fiend Gods in the alien realms, and mated with various strange creatures whose origins were unknown. They were only looking for stronger and weirder power, and they were willing to do anything for it. As a result, they had produced all kinds of bizarre hybrid offspring, and even made changes to their souls.
Humans were born with three spiritual and seven physical souls. This was the rule laid down by Empress Wa in accordance with the Heavenly Dao when creating human beings. This was because half of the human bloodline came from Pangu, who had three spiritual and seven physical souls. This was the standard number of human souls allowed by the Heavenly Dao.
In order to gain greater power, the forbidden clans had modified their souls. They had created all kinds of strange beings with different numbers of souls—some with seven spiritual and one physical soul, some with eighteen spiritual and nine physical souls, or some with one spiritual but thirteen physical souls. Worst of all, among those souls were slivers of Fiend Gods or alien species’ psyches, which caused some members of the forbidden clans to become the incarnations of these alien beings.
Because of this approach, the forbidden clans could no longer be regarded as part of the human race, and it made them the target that all human beings must kill.
But unfortunately, the curses of the forbidden clans became stronger and stronger as their bodies and souls mutated, just like the five guys captured by Wu Qi, whose cultivation bases were only at the realm of Gold Core. Their fleshly bodies were extremely weak, but their souls were vastly different from those of humans. They might have dozens of spiritual souls and dozens of physical souls, some of which belonged to them while others belonged to some extremely powerful beings from alien realms.
Because those beings were not bound by the Laws of Heavenly Dao in this world, they could do more damage than anyone could imagine. When several of such formidable beings struck at the same time, the curse was powerful enough to make even an almighty expert like Wu Qi suffer.
The dreadful power of the forbidden clans’ curses came not just from their mutated souls, but also from the cursing instruments they used. In fact, their refinement of all kinds of instruments had surpassed the pinnacle of the human race. Every seemingly ordinary instruments they used were actually crafted with a huge amount of rare natural materials and great effort.
For example, the seemingly ordinary, cork-carved figure used to curse Wu Qi was most likely the spirit root of some mighty innate divine tree refined with the blood essence taken from numerous formidable creatures, and then injected with the magic power of either many immortals, buddhas, or oracles.
The five extremely weak men from the forbidden clans seemed to have simply wounded Wu Qi, but their simple curse probably contained the efforts of hundreds of Primordial experts. At the moment when he was cursed, Wu Qi was actually fighting against hundreds or even more powerful beings.
This was the essence of the forbidden clans’ curses. The strange and unpredictable existences from the alien realms, the cursing instruments crafted with enormous amounts of rare resources and effort, and the mighty magic power in these instruments had given their curses such terrible power.
On top of that, they always chose the most suitable location, the most suitable time, and the most suitable person to perform the curse. All in all, the forbidden clans had almost turned cursing into an art, with all its subtlety beyond the reach of today’s Oracles from both Great Yu’s Directorate of Celestials and Secret Palace.
After all, these ancient clans such as Wu Xian and Wu Peng were already the most powerful Oracle Clans when the human race was still in the era of the tribal alliance. In fact, the Oracles from both the Directorate of Celestials and Secret Palace were considered as people who had inherited their legacy, and part of humanity’s oldest spells remained in their hands. In the face of their exotic magic, Great Yu could only passively defend itself.
The Oracles of Great Yu today were no match for the forbidden clans in their attainments of curses. So, over the years, Great Yu’s only means of dealing with them was to kill as many of them as possible, and to hunt them down with the power of the whole dynasty as soon as their traces were discovered.
Because of their complicated bloodline, the forbidden clans were very difficult to reproduce. For them, every clansman was extremely important. Wu Qi’s killing of five of their people this time had been considered a great victory.
Wu Qi and Princess Zhang Le humbly asked Long Mo for information about the forbidden clans, and in the spirit of nurturing the juniors, he told them everything he knew.
Just then, a pale golden flame emerged from Wu Qi’s sleeve.
Wu Qi was startled, then quickly reached into his sleeve and pulled out the bracelet the South Emperor had given him as compensation.
The nine golden pearls on the bracelet held in the mouths of the dragons were releasing a pale flame which rose like smoke to form a fire mirror that was about a foot wide. While frowning, Wu Qi threw the bracelet away, but it hovered right in front of him. Suddenly, an old man with a pair of ram’s horns and features that looked like an old goat flashed across the mirror.
“The forbidden clans!” Long Mo lurched to his feet and shouted.
The bracelet shattered, and the scapegoat puppets Wu Qi and Princess Zhang Le carried exploded into clouds of smoke, drifting away in the wind.
Wu Qi’s face turned livid.