This trip was going to be wrought with danger. That’s why Cheng Yang didn’t tell anyone before coming. Lau Hui was a straightforward and righteous person, so he wouldn’t protest. But, if Liu Hau or Yu Kai caught word of the plan, they would definitely try to stop him from going.
Worse still, they might have forced him to take more people with him. However, a big group would be disadvantageous for this kind of task. He and Liu Wei were all the combat power needed, and Lau Hui could handle any administrative work dealing with the Yicheng citizens. He was also a Summoner so he could use his dire wolf to aggro monsters if he was in danger.
As for guarding the citizens of Yicheng, Cheng Yang never planned too. He was only going to stay long enough to capture the Territory Altar and supervise the building of a Wall. From then onwards, they would be on their own.
If everything went well, Cheng Yang would considering sending some high-level soldiers to help the village develop. Unfortunately, it would be a while since there was a shortage of labor. Perhaps he could get Adventurers to do it?
Yicheng was almost fifty kilometers away from Phoenix Village, and the further anyone had traveled since the apocalypse was twenty kilometers, but it wasn’t close to cleared yet. Naturally, Cheng Yang couldn’t defend Yicheng if a crisis were to occur.
In Cheng Yang’s past life, the two Territory Altars near Yicheng weren’t captured until four months after the earthquake. By that time, nearly everyone from Yicheng was dead, and dozens of Mature monsters were roaming the area. Fortunately, humanity was strong enough by then to capture the Territory Altars.
No one knew if those Mature monsters were there from the beginning or if they evolved over time since they were already there when they arrived.
Originally, Cheng Yang was hesitant to make the journey since he could encounter a Mature monster or Boss. Fortunately, he picked up the Bone-Gnawing Bead the other day, which would allow him to face a Mature monster on even footing.
If he were to fall into a dangerous situation, he would immediately invest his fortune into upgrading the Bone-Gnawing Bead to a High-Grade Artifact. So long as it wasn’t a Mature Boss, any monster would be killed in just ten seconds.
Of course, that was a last-ditch effort since it would deplete everything he had worked for since the beginning of the apocalypse.
Thankfully, Cheng Yang didn’t need to explain this to Lau Hui or Liu Wei. They trusted him enough to know he had a plan.
Suddenly, Cheng Yang felt a chill go down his spine. As if a venomous snake was staring at him. He turned his head to look realized that the Orc Stronghold was in that direction. Cheng Yang had nearly forgotten about it, but they were reasonably close to it right now.
“What’s the matter?” Liu Wei asked when she noticed Cheng Yang tense up.
“It’s nothing important.” Cheng Yang said, “We’re just in a dangerous location and need to move quickly.”
Liu Wei didn’t look convinced, but, since he had initially discovered the Orc Stronghold, he let Liu Wei know about it. When she heard, Liu Wei unconsciously quickened her pace.
Cheng Yang wasn’t sure what was going on over at the Orc Stronghold, but he had a strong feeling someone, or something, was looking at him just then.
In his previous life, the mystery of the Orc Strongholds was never solved. In this life, Cheng Yang wanted to be the one to unravel the riddle. It was a goal he’d set for himself.
Moving quickly, the trio left the Orc Stronghold behind.
During the journey, Cheng Yang deliberately avoided running into any hordes. Thankfully, the hordes were starting to conglomerate, so there were fewer of them running around. Thus, utilizing Liu Wei’s instakill ability, they were able to move around stealthily.
Liu Wei wore a full set of Purple Silver equipment, all of which boosted her healing ability and, thus, her Smite skill. Unless she was facing a Pinnacle-Grade monster, she was invincible.
Lau Hui knew about Liu Wei’s Innate Abilities, but it didn’t lessen the shock of seeing a High-Grade monster die without a sound.
On the downside, Liu Wei was a glass cannon. All of her equipment was geared towards offense, so her other attributes were pitifully weak. If she didn’t have Cheng Yang to guard her, she would be nearly useless. Her attribute weighting wasn’t as apparent right now, but once people chose their subclasses, her attributes would be even more lopsided.
An hour later, they were eighteen kilometers from the village. This would have been inconceivable before the apocalypse, but for superhumans like them is was slower than a brisk walking speed.
The original shallow hills in the area surrounding Cloud City had been turned into a dense forest with endless steep mountains interspersed with small flatlands. There were cliffs everywhere, so finding Yicheng just based on memory would be difficult if you weren’t Cheng Yang.
“We need to go through that crevice.” Cheng Yang softly said as he pointed to a thick crack between two mountains.
When they passed through to the other side, the rising sun painted a picture across the landscape that made them gasp in awe.
“You know, this would probably be a famous tourist location in the old world.” Lau Hui reminisced. “People would bring the kids and eat lunch on the grass as they watched the sun dance across the horizon. Maybe I’ll bring Pang Sun here someday.”
“It might be nice for couples like you, but in my opinion, that canyon surrounding Cloud City is much cooler.” Cheng Yang replied.
“Oh come on, Cheng Yang, don’t you think this is nice too?” Liu Wei asked, turning around in such a way that the light flowed through her uneven feathery hair. “I especially like that I get to see it with someone like you.”
“Well, it’s not bad, I suppose.” Cheng Yang said, fighting back a blush.
“Heeelp!” Luckily for Cheng Yang, a drawn-out, piercing cry ruined the moment.
Since the apocalypse began, no one in this world had a more tragic fate than people living in rural areas. Safe zones wouldn’t spawn near them, and more than likely, neither would Territory Altars, so it was impossible to perform a class change ceremony. Their only fate was to either starve to death or get eaten by a monster.
But now, one of those scattered individuals fate had changed for the better. They had been lucky enough to survive this long, and now someone with the strength to save them happened to pass by.
“Help.” The voice repeated, much softer this time.
“Yoko, what should we do?” Lau Hui asked.
“We help them!” Cheng Yang said firmly, “What else can we do?”