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And then, Tang Jie laughed.

Shu Mingyang saw him move.

His hands blurred through the air, instantly forming countless hand signs.
Spiritual energy surged toward him, creating a violet glow.

The Violet Lightning Lunge!

Peak Level 2 Violet Lightning Lunge!

Shu Mingyang didn't know why Tang Jie was using the Violet Lightning Lunge at this time, but as that violet energy shot into the air, he saw Tang Jie laugh, turn around, and shoot off into the distance.

Leaving behind a blazing trail of violet lightning, Tang Jie covered a vast distance in the space of a few seconds and vanished from sight.

Just like that, he had run off!

As Shu Mingyang was flabbergasted by the sight, there was a roar of, “He's over there!”

Not good!

Shu Mingyang instantly felt an ill omen and instinctively jumped to the side. Boom! A giant crater now existed where he had been standing.

Two people stood nearby: Helian Hu and Jiang Qingsong.
Helian Hu was clearly unhappy.
If Jiang Qingsong hadn't shouted, he really would have killed Shu Mingyang with that palm strike just now.

Looking at Shu Mingyang, Jiang Qingsong shouted, “Senior Brother Helian, that kid Tang Jie is really sharp and ran off first!”

Helian Hu smiled.
“Then we'll kill this one first!”

Tang Jie had run off too quickly.
The mere sight of that violet blur let Helian Hu know that he wouldn't be able to catch up.
Thus, he decided to not chase at all and turn his attention to Shu Mingyang.

“Yes.
Senior Brother, act freely.
Your junior brother will support you!” Jiang Qingsong saluted and stood to the side.

Helian Hu hadn't expected him to not do anything, but after some thought, he decided that this was appropriate.
One Shu Mingyang wasn't worth the two of them working together.
This guy respected him, so he decided to give him the opportunity, which Helian Hu greatly approved of.
Without another word, he released his sole remaining refined tiger.

Though he only had one refined tiger, he himself was not weak, and with only one refined beast left now, he had even better control.
Thus, although his strength had been affected, it wasn't as bad as imagined.
He was confident when facing down Shu Mingyang.
He savagely laughed and said, “Scoundrel, you were also one of those who schemed against me, right? Hand over your life!”

The Skinflayer Knife swung, unleashing a sharp wave of energy at Shu Mingyang.

Aghast, Shu Mingyang took out a talisman to block, at the same time shouting, “Senior Brother Helian, please show mercy.
This junior brother has never thought about making you an enemy.
I did make the Spirit Seal Talisman, but I did not know that it would be used against you.
Moreover, I only created the talisman, but Tang Jie was the one who made it into a talisman formation… This has nothing to do with me.”

“Cut the chatter.
Since you're here, you might as well die!” Helian Hu bellowed as he fired off several more waves of energy at Shu Mingyang.

Helian Hu was truly formidable.
Even without using his refined beast, he was strong enough to fight against a school genius like Shu Mingyang.

Shu Mingyang threw out talismans as if they were free, desperately trying to defend himself while trying to argue his case.
Alas, Helian Hu ignored all his arguments.
He loathed Tang Jie for all the tricks that had been played on the tournament grounds, and he was intent on tormenting Shu Mingyang.
His every strike could be blocked by Shu Mingyang, but they required all of his strength.
At the same time, his lower-grade Mind Opening fiend tiger lunged out and clawed at Shu Mingyang, opening up wounds on his body.

It wasn't long before Shu Mingyang was completely covered in wounds, as if he was being given a death by a thousand cuts.

Shu Mingyang gradually began to fail.
He cried out in despair, “Helian Hu, don't push me too far! I already said that none of this had anything to do with me!”

“Nonsense! Whether you're involved or not, you must all die! The Beast Refining Gate and Basking Moon Sect get along like water and fire.
Even if we have no past grudges, even if that was all Tang Jie's doing and nothing to do with you, since I've run into you, just count yourself unlucky that your life was used to temper my rage!”

The Skinflayer flashed with light.

He had had enough torturing, so this strike was intended to kill.

With no other choice, Shu Mingyang finally shouted, “Don't kill me! I'm not part of the Basking Moon Sect!”

“What?” Helian Hu was startled, and his knife stopped.

Shu Mingyang roared, “Godhead Palace spy, Fierce Ape Shu Mingyang, pays respects to Senior Brother Helian!”

He took out an item and threw it at Helian Hu: a small placard that had the words “Hawk Hall” carved into it.
It was none other than an identity placard of the Hawk Hall.

“You're part of Godhead Palace?” Helian Hu looked at Shu Mingyang in shock.

Shu Mingyang brusquely replied, “Yes, I'm a spy of Godhead Palace, on orders to infiltrate the Basking Moon Sect… I really didn't think that I would be forced to expose myself to you before the Basking Moon Sect could even find me… Shit!”

Helian Hu was deeply ashamed.
“How could I have known that this would be the case… Junior Brother Shu, I've wronged you, and for that, I am deeply sorry.
Relax.
I definitely won't let this matter get out.”

Godhead Palace and the Beast Refining Gate relied on each other.
If Shu Mingyang was part of Godhead Palace, then he was really someone that shouldn't be killed.

“Then hurry up and leave!” Shu Mingyang dropped to his knees and coughed up blood.

He had been wounded by Helian Hu and had only exposed himself because he had no other choice.
His injuries were so severe that he couldn't even stand.

“I'm leaving right now,” Helian Hu quickly said.
He knew that spies were involved in serious business, and if he really managed to hurt one of Godhead Palace's plans, he would be punished by his sect.

Just as he was about to leave, Jiang Qingsong stopped him and said, “Senior Brother Helian, wait a moment.
This token from this Godhead Palace spy is something we've never seen before.
We can't just take it at face value, right?”

Helian Hu froze.
“Your meaning is…?”

“He might be a member of the Basking Moon Sect using this plan to try and survive.”

Shu Mingyang was furious.
“So you think I knew that you were going to kill me and prepared this token for just that scenario?”

“That's hard to say.
Besides, admitting to being a spy isn't something that you just do casually, right?” Jiang Qingsong firmly replied.

Shu Mingyang mentally cursed, “Casually”, your mother! If I had been a little slower, Helian Hu would have taken my life!

But he said out loud, “Then what else do you want?”

“We need to verify it first.
Since you're a Godhead Palace spy, you should have some understanding of the situation in Godhead Palace.
I'll ask you a few questions, and if you can get it right, I'll believe you.”

“Alright.
But as a spy, I only understand the Hawk Hall.
I won't be able to answer any questions about the other halls.”

“Then let's keep it to the Hawk Hall.
First, who is the Master of Hawk Hall, his deputy, and who is your commander?”

“The current Hawk Hall Master is Zhu Jinyu, the first Deputy Eagle Master is Bai Liqiu, and the second Deputy Eagle Master is Deng Yuqing.
I was originally under Deputy Eagle Master Gu Changqing.
Once Gu Changqing died, I went into hiding for two years.
It was only recently that I received new orders and was placed under the command of Eagle Master Deng Yuqing.”

“How many spies does the Hawk Hall currently have in the Basking Moon Sect? And who are they?”

Shu Mingyang was furious. You ask too much! And even if I made it all up, how could you tell if it was true or not? Or is a Beast Refining Gate student like you running around with a list of spies from my Godhead Palace?

But his life was in peril, so he could only drop his head and reply, “After Gu Changqing's death, the spies that Godhead Palace stationed in the Basking Moon Sect took a heavy blow.
Many people were lost, and they are still in the middle of rebuilding.
I do not know too many details, only the few people I've been in touch with…”

He gave a few names.

Even so, Jiang Qingsong still wasn't satisfied, asking Shu Mingyang several more things about Godhead Palace.
Even Helian Hu couldn't stand it anymore, saying, “Isn't that enough? Given what he knows, there's no doubt that he's a Godhead spy, and one with a very high rank at that.”

“Mm, it's enough.” Jiang Qingsong nodded.
“Senior Brother Helian, it's not good to linger here.
Let's head back.”

“Mm.” Helian Hu nodded and left.

But Jiang Qingsong was rather conscientious, throwing Shu Mingyang a bottle of pills before leaving.
“We did not know of Junior Brother's identity, and deeply offended you.
Please accept our apologies.”

He left with Helian Hu.

Shu Mingyang grabbed the bottle, poured out the pills, and threw them into his mouth before plopping to the ground, panting for breath.

His tracking mission had failed and Helian Hu had forced him to reveal his identity.
He had utterly failed and had no idea how he was going to report this.

But at least those two hadn't asked about his mission, as mentioning Tang Jie would inevitably involve the matter of the Ten Direction Valley formation.
If word reached the ears of the Beast Refining Gate, there would probably be even more trouble.

Shu Mingyang suddenly felt a chill.

Hold on!

That Jiang Qingsong had asked about everything, even the methods by which the Hawk Hall communicated within the Basking Moon Sect, but why had he not asked about the mission?

“As a spy, what is your mission?” This question might not have been the most important, but it was undoubtedly the most obvious.
Anyone would ask this question, so there was no reason to skip over it.

Unless…

“Unless he already knew,” Shu Mingyang muttered.
The chill intensified, pervading his entire body.

And then he discovered… he couldn't move.

“The medicine was poisoned!” Shu Mingyang couldn't help but cry out.

He raised his head and saw someone standing nearby, coldly looking at him.

Jiang Qingsong!

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