Having decided on that, Xi Ju Hai got to work. This array actually wasn’t that difficult to make not to mention that the base had already been laid long ago. She first fixed the spot that Yang Wu Huang and the other two had messed up and then went on to add the last few lines that the demonic practitioners hadn’t drawn yet. Then, she got up and went to Zhi Guan’s side, looking at him.
“It is finished?”
Zhi Guan gave a hum and then turned to the others. “Alright. I want you to return to the camp immediately. We have to make sure that this message reaches my Master no matter what happens to us. We will use the array after you are gone. If the other side is safe and we have a way to return immediately, we should return tomorrow morning at the very latest. If we don’t, then either it wasn’t safe or there is more to search over there than we expected. We will only stay there until we have figured out where that place is and what significance it holds though.”
The other disciples nodded and then turned around, leaving without another word. They knew that this was the best they could do for the others.
Zhi Guan didn’t immediately tell the others to enter and instead waited for a while. In any case, moving at the fastest speed, these disciples would also need a while before they reached the sect’s camp again. It was best to give them at least a bit of time in case that them finishing the array and stepping into it would alert the other side.
With things being quiet, Mei Chao Bing couldn’t help but glance at Xi Ju Hai. “Senior martial sister Xi, can I ask you a question about arrays?”
Xi Ju Hai looked over, a little confused and also cautious. “What is it?” While Mei Chao Bing hadn’t done anything bad and she had heard from Liu Bao Ru that he had led his group well, there still was some uneasiness in her heart that she just couldn’t shake.
It probably wasn’t too strange. She had known Mu Qing but he had still been able to betray the sect right under her nose. This Mei Chao Bing … he was just a junior she had seen a few times. How could she trust him if she hadn’t even been able to trust her own fiance? And maybe … maybe she was also reluctant to admit that another person who had followed Feng Bai Xiao might be more trustworthy than the man she had loved for more than a few decades.
Mei Chao Bing could see the doubt in her eyes but still explained his thoughts as if he hadn’t noticed anything. “If somebody was to step into an unfinished array and tried to trigger it, would it alarm the person that had started to draw the array?”
Xi Ju Hai furrowed her brows. “Of course not. Before the array is finished, there won’t be a link to it. It is just like a dead object. Only when it is completely established and imbued with a bit of spiritual energy by the one who made it, then there will be a link that allows them to notice any changes to it.”
“Huh. It was like this.” Mei Chao Bing slightly narrowed his eyes and stared at the array.
Xi Ju Hai couldn’t help but furrow her brows at that. “What’s the meaning of that?”
Mei Chao Bing shook his head though. “It’s nothing. I’m just trying to wrap my head around what happened the other day. Junior martial brother Yang’s group came here and investigated the array. They didn’t notice the concealment array to the side and he suggested it might have been added later on to mislead us. But if that is the case, then how did the demonic practitioners find out that they were here in the first place? If they stepped into the array and used their spiritual energy to activate it, it shouldn’t have alerted anyone.”
Xi Ju Hai’s expression turned a little subtle at that. This was indeed the truth. “Well, maybe they didn’t check the surroundings as carefully as they should have.” This still meant that Yang Wu Huang had been lying though. This really wasn’t a good thing.
Mei Chao Bing nodded slowly. “That seems to be the only logical explanation. In that case, it means that the demonic practitioners were waiting for them though. I don’t really like what that might mean.”
Xi Ju Hai’s expression was tangled. She had wondered if maybe Mei Chao Bing was just trying to badmouth Yang Wu Huang but as it turned out, had really been thinking about this point logically. And the answer he had arrived at was unfortunately one that really wasn’t good for them. She turned to look at Zhi Guan, her expression a little helpless. “Are you sure that you want to do this?”
Zhi Guan looked at her, and then tightened his grip on his sword. “We are already here. We did finish the array for them. At the very least, we should make use of it and then go back. In the worst case, we should destroy the array afterward.”
Xi Ju Hai was still a bit hesitant but finally nodded. In any case, even if they took more people, it might not be a smart decision. Come to think of it … maybe it was better to go with fewer people.
She glanced at the others and finally turned back to Zhi Guan. “Let’s say the demonic practitioners have been calculating against us. They want some of us to enter the array but expect us to send some other people back. In that case, while we are waiting here, they will be rushing after Yang Wu Huang and the others. They will not be much safer than we will be on the other side.”
Zhi Guan’s expression turned thoughtful. “In that case, the message might never reach my Master or at least not in time.” He pondered for a moment and then took out a piece of paper, crouching down to write a short message. He imbued it with his spiritual energy and then send it off.
“I’m afraid this won’t be a guarantee either.” Xi Ju Hai looked at the other three when she said so. “Maybe we should send somebody else to send the message.”
The other three looked at each other, not quite sure what they should say. Mei Chao Bing wasn’t willing to step back. This matter was personal to him. It would be best if he didn’t have to stay behind. He would understand why Xi Ju Hai wouldn’t want to have him there though. He clenched his fist, and lowered his head, just hoping that Zhi Guan would decide on somebody else to leave.
Song Mu glanced at Mei Chao Bing and then turned to look at Yuan Lei. “Junior martial brother Yuan, how about you go back? We need senior martial sister Xi because of the array and senior martial brother Zhi has the mission to lead us this time and also has the most experience from all of us. Neither of them can go.
“Mei Chao Bing and my level are slightly higher than yours. It might not be that much but if we get into trouble on the other side, our chances are just that little bit higher. Also, you’re able to read traces. So you’re probably the one who will be able to get away the best since you are able to hide your own traces and also find traces of the demonic practitioners around. Neither of us has this ability.”
Yuan Lei glanced at Mei Chao Bing and then at Zhi Guan, finally nodding. “If senior martial brother Zhi is alright with this, then I will do it.”
Zhi Guan nodded. “Junior martial brother Song makes some good points. I think it would really be for the best to do it this way.”
Yuan Lei nodded, glanced around the ground and the sky, and finally left in another direction.