C13 Harboring Ulterior Motives
The map was divided into six colors: white, green, orange, red, dark purple, and black.
Each color represents the different territories of the Vicious Beasts such as the F-class Vicious Beasts district, E-class Vicious Beasts district, D-class Vicious Beasts district, and C-class Vicious Beasts district.
The strength of a Vicious Beasts also corresponds to the realm of a martial artist.
The F-class Vicious Beasts had strength equivalent to that of a cultivator in the Body Tempering Realm. Although the Vicious Beasts of this class may be weak, their numbers reigned supreme. No matter how many of those beasts were killed, they would come back in larger amounts.
The E-class Vicious Beasts — possessing strength similar to that of cultivators in the Mortal Realm — were also innumerable.
The D-class Vicious Beast were comparable in strength to cultivators of the Martial Expert Realm while the C-class Vicious Beasts to that of the Martial General Realm.
It was reported that the B-class Vicious Beasts had once appeared in the Red Maple Stronghold and almost destroyed the entire base.
As for A-class Vicious Beasts, they had never been sighted anywhere around the Red Maple Stronghold before. If such a powerful Vicious Beast were to appear, it would represent the total destruction of the city and the death of its people.
Legends had it that there were even S-class Vicious Beasts superior to the ones of A-class. Those mythical existences have been said to possess the ability to cause total chaos wherever it sets put. However, no one had ever seen them before, let alone traces of them.
While specific Vicious Beasts usually moved around in their corresponding territories, the probability of ones of a higher class entering the territories of the lower class beasts should be taken into careful consideration.
Many martial cultivators have met their ends in lower level areas because of that exact reason.
In the map, the entire Red Maple Stronghold was marked as a white region.
The outskirts of the stronghold were colored in green and divided into various irregular areas.
These green areas were relatively safe F-class areas that included the territories of the Wind Wolves.
Su Lang narrowed his eyes, revealing a trace of killing intent.
Suddenly, he felt a light pat on his shoulder.
Su Lang frowned and turned around. His gaze, as sharp as a knife, dug into the eyes of the newcomer.
It was a bearded man in the Intermediate Body Tempering Realm.
"Don't be so agitated! Aha, my name is Tan Zicheng...."
Tan Zicheng said with a smile, "I see you are currently studying the map. Are you going to hunt outside the stronghold?"
"What does it have to do with you?"
Su Lang asked indifferently.
"You really are going to hunt? Don't blame for not warning you later. The outskirts of the stronghold is not only dangerous but also troublesome to navigate through."
Tan Zicheng stated, "As for me, I specialize in several jobs, acting as one's guide, support, carrier, and errand boy. Of course, that is my main source of income. Are you interested in my services?"
Su Lang glanced at Tan Zicheng and smiled.
"Only 50 silver coins."
Tan Zicheng immediately said, "You don't have to worry about anything other than fighting. If you need me to fight, you will have to pay an extra amount."
"Hmm.... I just happen to need a guide."
Su Lang nodded and said, "Follow me. We'll leave the city after dinner."
Immediately after, Su Lang began walking towards a restaurant with Tan Zicheng following from behind.
This particular restaurant served a rich variety of dishes, including the meat of various kinds of Vicious Beasts. There were even vegetables that contained hints of Spiritual Qi.
Su Lang ordered a table full of dishes, worth a total of 10 silver coins.
"This might be far too sumptuous!"
Tan Zicheng exclaimed in excitement, "I have never eaten such a grand meal before in my entire life. Thank you so much."
"Eat to your heart's content."
Su Lang smiled.
After satisfying their gluttony, Su Lang and Tan Zicheng returned to the City Gate Hall.
A moment later, the two of them arrived outside the stronghold through a long and narrow passageway.
"This is the world outside the city!"
Upon stepping out of the passageway, Su Lang was met by a great mountain that towered endlessly into the clouds. It was coated with a dense green forest that seemed to separate the heavens and earth.
Further away beyond the clouds stood the peak of the grand mountain that seemed to be unreachable by mortal means.
"Come, let's go to the territory of the F-class Wind Wolves."
Su Lang handed his backpack to Tan Zicheng while only holding onto the black long blade in his hand.
"The territory of the F-class Wind Wolves? But that place now serves as the stronghold of the Broken Axe Hunting Group."
Tan Zicheng's expression changed as he faintly observed Su Lang from the back.
Su Lang replied with a faint smile, "Don't worry. I have already heard news of their group. I will only take a quick look and avoid causing any trouble."
"That's good, that's good! I'll lead the way for you now!"
Tan Zicheng's tense expression relaxed into a smile as he said, "You've found the right person for this job. I happen to know a shortcut to the territory of the Wind Wolves. It will take four hours at most to arrive at the destination."
After saying that, Tan Zicheng took the initiative and led the way.
The roads on the outskirts of the city were extremely difficult to traverse. Aside from the potholes and ramps everywhere, one could see all kinds of bones left behind by the Vicious Beast from time to time.
Upon their arrival at an eerie forest halfway down the road, Tan Zicheng suddenly came to a stop in his tracks.