Chapter 25 – Battle
‘Are you serious? Do these people ever fully charge their batteries before heading out?’ Li Yiming stared at the black car spitefully. No matter how hard he pushed on the accelerator, the black car was still slipping out of his reach.
‘Wait a second, electricity… ‘ Li Yiming suddenly had an idea. After a brief effort, the scooter was suddenly revitalized and accelerated forward once again.
‘Holy shit, and I was worried about running out of power? I’m the most powerful battery in the world!’ Li Yiming roared inwardly as a purple spark climbed up his buttocks.
Ninety… One hundred… One hundred and ten… The scooter, with its speed-limiting device removed, reached an unfathomable speed when Li Yiming himself provided it with nearly infinite power.
Ye Lang was dumbfounded when he saw the scooter close in slowly. ‘Are you serious? Do they really go to that kind of length to modify scooters nowadays? I have to get myself one of those. But… now that he’s caught up, and no one’s around… More importantly, no cameras around, I think I can get away with disobeying Ying Mei’s orders. Pfft, taking care of a representative should be a piece of cake.’ Ye Lang spat out of the window and slowed down the car.
* * *
“Finally, now’s the time.” The skinny man gulped down the last bit of his plum juice. ‘Seventeen people. Prudent enough, but prudence alone is worthless.’ He picked up a napkin and stood up. He could see from the corner of his eyes that a restaurant wagon was slowly driving out of an alley nearby, and, most importantly, that quite a few people in the crowd were following the vehicle surreptitiously. He made a lazy stretch and headed toward a bus that had just arrived at a stop nearby. A moment later and the bus made for the opposite direction with him on board.
* * *
“Man Dao’s on his way. All clear.”
Ying Mei frowned when she heard the reports from her subordinates. ‘Where are these people… I’ve spent so much time, and I haven’t even found a single one of them yet. We’re facing dangerous foes.’ Ying Mei took a deep breath and concentrated on checking the return route once again for the car that held Fu Bo.
* * *
Li Yiming looked at the parked car in front of him. ‘Why did the car stop? I thought this viaduct led all the way out of town. Don’t tell me that the car ran out of gas…’
Before Li Yiming could finish his thoughts, a muscular man wearing a black vest and sport shorts came out with a dark countenance. ‘Oh, I see…’ Li Yiming smiled coldly. After verifying his surroundings, he ducked down and continued to accelerate.
Seventy meters… Fifty… Thirty… Ye Lang looked at Li Yiming, who flew in like a moth into a fire pit and smiled cruelly. However, a moment later, Ye Lang’s blood ran cold when he saw that Li Yiming had vanished from the seat of the scooter.
Ye Lang suddenly felt a sharp pain in his stomach, and he was sent flying from the impact of the blow.
‘Guardian?’ The shock in Li Yiming’s mind mirrored that of his foe’s.
Li Yiming squinted when he saw Ye Lang turn around in midair and land on the pavement with his hand on his stomach. ‘I used at least eighty percent of my strength and Thunderflash. It felt like I’ve punched a steel beam. Even my wrist is numb…’
The scooter continued on its course and shattered against the car with a loud thud. This was the moment Li Yiming chose to strike. He appeared above Ye Lang with his decorative longsword and brought it down in a mighty slash.
The clink of metal hitting metal even surpassed that of the collision between the scooter and the car. The decorative sword from Jing Prefecture had finally fulfilled its destiny: it broke into several fragments against Ye Lang’s arm.
Li Yiming was taken aback by the demise of his weapon. ‘Are you kidding me? I thought that the quality of modern metalworking was passable at least, yet it’s giving up on me on the first blow?’ As the thought ran through his mind, he felt a sudden gust of wind around his stomach. He retracted his abdomen and activated Thunderflash without hesitation. When Li Yiming reappeared ten meters further away, his shirt had been ripped into pieces and three bloody marks ran down his abdomen.
“All appearance, I see.’ Ye Lang licked the tip of his fingers that had been colored into a bright crimson by Li Yiming’s flesh and blood. Li Yiming noticed that Ye Lang had changed; his body had grown even more muscular, his sideburns thickened, and his chin, which had looked sharp and clean, was slowly growing in size. 1
“We’ll see about that.” Li Yiming could hear the sound of the police sirens in the distance; this was a fight which had to be finished quickly.
Ye Lang also heard the siren sounds. The bloodlust and urge to kill in his eyes intensified. He crouched down and made ready to leap toward Li Yiming. However, Li Yiming interrupted him with a gesture of the right arm. “Thunderfall!”
The bolt of lightning that appeared above his head caught Ye Lang off guard, who had thought of Li Yiming as a close-range warrior with some kind of instant movement technique. Ye Lang attempted to roll to the side, but was intercepted mid air by a palm with purple light. Ye Lang barely had time to put his hands in front of him to block the attack. His limbs were paralyzed the moment he made contact with the tens of thousands of volt that ran between Li Yiming’s fingers.
The last thing Ye Lang saw was another hand moving toward his heart. A crater was produced when he landed onto the pavement, his limbs rigid and his body stiff. The tip of his hair had been been charred, and his eyes stared vacantly at the sky.
Li Yiming gazed at Ye Lang’s corpse coldly. Instead of disgust, he felt the thrill of combat and the excitement of the kill. As the siren noises became louder, Li Yiming rushed toward the black car and pulled open the backdoor.
“Nothing? The car’s empty?” Li Yiming was dumbfounded. He put his palm on the car and searched it inside and out with his senses.
‘Empty… I was tricked…’ Li Yiming glanced at Ye Lang’s corpse, irritated by the setback, and then at the direction from which the siren sounds came. A few flashes of light later and he was gone.
* * *
“We’ve arrived. Everything is as planned.” Ying Mei’s agitation grew as the confirmation of success came. ‘Fu Bo’s back but nothing happened? Does that mean that they’ve given up on him? Or is it that they’re hesitant to show a weakness…’
However, both Ying Mei and the rest of her team failed to notice the arrival of a taxi in the neighborhood. A fat woman descended from the vehicle with a basket of groceries and a friendly smile. This was the disguise of Qian Mian, Stargaze’s agent. He had the ability to change his appearance at will, and he trailed Ying Mei’s subordinates all the way to the neighborhood, sometimes even travelling right alongside them. 2
Qian Mian exchanged warm greetings with the security guard and was even offered to be escorted to her door. After a few not-so-insistent refusals, Qing Mian happily hopped onto the patrol car. This all occurred right under Ying Mei’s watch, but failed to trigger the latter’s alarm. The fat woman was the very well-known owner of building 39, and her husband was a wealthy coal mine owner. The mistress had appeared alongside affluence, and her husband had not returned home for several years already. The woman’s tolerance of her husband’s infidelity grew along with her waistline, and given her appearance, few in the neighborhood could forget about her.
As the patrol car went by, the fat woman saluted Ying Mei warmly. Ying Mei, who had nothing but anxiety in her mind, turned her head away. The fat woman did not mind Ying Mei’s coldness and continued her conversation with the guard. However, Bing Shuai, who had been in the living room of his house, suddenly stood up and gazed in the direction of the patrol car. Terror flashed on Qian Mian’s face, and he vanished an instant later, leaving a terrified guard who jumped off his car and ran into the distance.
“They’ve already come and left.” Bing Shuai approached Ying Mei with a grim expression.
Shivers ran down Ying Mei’s spine; someone had followed her agents to their base of operations, and she did not even know about it. ‘If they seized the opportunity…’
“Boss…” An agent suddenly ran in with a telephone. Ying Mei looked at Bing Shuai lowered her head silently.
“Take it.” Bing Shuai took a deep breath. While he worked and planned his trap meticulously, his foes sat and watched him, as if he was a monkey in a circus. It had been a long while since he had experienced this kind of humiliating failure. Bing Shuai felt the need to take a moment to compose himself.
Ying Mei picked up the phone spiritlessly. However, a few sentences later and her countenance shifted drastically, “Bing…” Ying Mei hesitat==-ed, and even looking at her master in the eyes seemed to be a difficult task.
Bing Shuai stopped in his tracks and turned back toward Ying Mei. He had an ominous feeling for what was about to come.
“Ye… Ye Lang is dead…”
A tapestry of frost suddenly fell on the vegetation in the garden right outside of the mansion. Ying Mei felt as if she had fallen into an icy cave.
I will say this again, I’ll never understand the transition from warm-hearted fool to cold-blooded monster. 0.0
1. Note that Ye Lang in Chinese means “wild wolf”. This probably refers to some kind werewolf/semi-beast transformation.
2. Note that Qian Mian means a thousand faces, so obviously some kind spy/infiltrator kind of agent.