Chapter 138: Mystery Monster of the Forest
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
“Silly, come here.”
Gao Peng waved Silly over, and Silly drifted to him.
The past few days of intense battles had taken its toll on the body and mind of familiar and monster trainer alike.
The forest view might be stunning, with a beautiful sunrise that took his breath away, but Gao Peng was still getting tired of it after spending so many days in it.
He yawned. For the past few days, his main motive had been collecting valuable items.
“A Red-Banded Silverleaf is worth three credits, which is one credit less than a Blue-Light Goldenrain Flower. But the size of a Red-Banded Silverleaf is smaller than a Blue-Light Goldenrain Flower by almost half, so when factoring in the size, the Silverleaf is more valuable,” Gao Peng muttered to himself.
He took out a Blue-Light Goldenrain Flower from Silly’s personal space dimension and placed two Red-Banded Silverleaves inside.
The thrifty Gao Peng was making careful calculations. Diligent, frugal, and overflowing with passion, he was the standard of an eligible bachelor in this new era.
As he walked ahead through the forest, the sounds of birds and insects suddenly vanished, leaving nothing but the empty sound of the blowing wind.
The quiet, spooky, dark forest seemed to be hiding something horrifying. The trees here were denser, blocking out most of the light from above, and shadows were all around.
The low winds began to carry a faint, foul smell, like that of raw fish being left out to rot in the middle of July.
With each step he took, the crunch of fallen leaves beneath his feet was deafening in the silence of the forest.
Gao Peng furrowed his brows. Something was out there watching him.
His familiars didn’t need Gao Peng’s warning. They had already sensed that something was amiss. Da Zi’s eyes, normally carefree, were carrying a cautious glint. Silly was obediently sitting atop its master’s head with its tentacles gently waving.
Stripey suddenly noticed something and charged at a bush, shouting.
In the direction of Stripey’s charge, a bush shook a little, and out hopped a white rabbit, fleeing as quickly as its legs would allow it.
Seeing that it was just a rabbit, the familiars relaxed a little. But then a pitch-black blur shot out from the bush behind the rabbit and struck it like a snake striking its prey.
A long, thin insect limb had pierced through the back of the rabbit’s brain and out through its forehead. The limb was white in color, with bluish-purple discolorations like those on a corpse. Red blood trickled drop by drop from the brows of the rabbit.
The long limb came from deep within the bushes. Just the exposed area of the limb was at least fifteen feet long.
On the surface of the limb were rings that separated it into multiple segments, like a growing bamboo plant showing the signs of growth.
This bamboo-like limb retracted, disappearing into the depths of the bush, and the rabbit fell flat on the ground with a twitch.
In the middle of the rabbit’s forehead was a bloody hole roughly the thickness of a thumb. Fresh blood trickled out.
Just from a segment of the limb, Gao Peng was unable to see the monster’s attributes. He would have to see at least four-fifths of the entire monster before he could do so.
The forest once again fell into a deathly silence.
Gao Peng squinted and then let out a laugh. He had seen plenty of movies where characters in similarly horrifying situations would act like idiots, insisting on proceeding headfirst even when it was clear that danger was up ahead.
There was more than one path to take, so why gamble with his life? This was an easy choice to make.
Facing the direction of the monster, Gao Peng slowly backed away, saying, “Let’s go back the way we came.”
He and his familiars slowly retreated, never taking their eyes off the direction of the monster.
As they left that patch of forest, the monster in the depths began to follow.
The air suddenly brought a gust of cold, foul-smelling wind, causing the leaves around them to rustle violently.
It seemed as though Gao Peng’s unusual way of approaching the situation had piqued the curiosity of the monster in the forest, drawing it out.
Gao Peng began backing toward a wide clearing with a pond in the middle. Along the forest edge, they could see two long, white claws slinking their way forward. From behind the trees, they could feel the monster’s gaze on them.
Gao Peng sighed to himself. His familiars still lacked a means of long-range offense. Otherwise they could simply attack from afar. Even if such attacks weren’t very damaging, they would at least be able to see the entire monster and make out its attributes and weaknesses. Then they wouldn’t have to take such a passive approach.
Gao Peng and his company were mere steps from the clearing.
All of a sudden, one of the monster’s slender limbs pierced out from within the woods in a blur.
The speed kept increasing, and the limb kept on stretching.
In the blink of an eye, it had covered dozens of feet in one burst.
Dumby side-stepped to its left into the path of the strike, but the limb passed right through the gaps in Dumby’s body…
And it struck Gao Peng dead center in the chest, sending him flying backward.
A fraction of a second before impact, Gao Peng felt a strange ripple slither across him, which then extended outward toward Da Zi’s body.
Gao Peng grunted as he hit the ground, bringing his hands up to his chest to find it still in one piece. He looked looked over at Da Zi and saw that a hole had been punched into its carapace, leaving a depression that was shaped like a swirl. It almost pierced right through Da Zi’s abdomen!
Gao Peng had activated Shifting Constellations in the nick of time to absorb the blow, saving him and Da Zi.
Dumby was dumbstruck. It looked down at its empty and fleshless body and scratched its bald head.
Gao Peng was shocked to the core. He had not expected the monster to be able to launch an attack from such a long distance! He and the monster had been at least a hundred feet apart!
The monster couldn’t possibly be that big. Most likely it had the ability to extend its limbs. Otherwise the patch of forest would not have been able to hide a body that huge.
Inside the Monster Trainer College Entrance Examination Special Ops Unit Headquarters, a person said in a severe tone, “This Corpse Mutation Dream Stick Insect has already killed one candidate. It knows that the trainer has a weaker defense than the familiars and that it should attack the trainer first.”
“Are any of our operatives nearby?” asked the Special Ops Captain.
“White Rose is currently five kilometers from the target location. She is flying there now.”
“Good. One person has already died at the hands of this monster. If more fatalities occur…” The Special Ops Captain had a headache.
“Don’t you think those guys are crazy? ‘Be prepared for the possibility of deaths,’ they said. ‘It’s for the training of our cadets.”We hope for a more realistic experience.'”
“Now that someone has actually died, they are more anxious than anyone else,” the Captain said, his headache worsening.
“Captain, haven’t they always been like this? This isn’t the first time,” mused one of the members of the team.
The captain let out a long sigh. “Let’s hope this candidate can hold out until White Rose reaches him.”
Far away, a black and white giant albatross was soaring through the sky. On its chest was a white rose, adding a hint of beauty to its appearance. On the back of the albatross rode a short-haired girl. What left the deepest impression were her eyes, which were narrow and sharp.
“Retreat!” Gao Peng ordered, coughing as he hugged his chest.
Dumby turned around and grabbed its master and Da Zi before making a run for it.
Stripey turned towards the monster’s direction and shot out a few balls of white spider silk before also turning and fleeing.
“This guy is pretty clever!” said the Special Ops Captain’s as his eyes lit up. He had expected the little guy to try to fight it out with the monster. Thank goodness he knew better and retreated.