Chapter 65 Conferring Dragons

After telling him my plans, I took out the liquid bandage spray(1) and plastic tape from my bag and began sealing all the skin on my body.

Once I was finished, I told Fatty to continue blocking me from view and prepare for a struggle if I was discovered. Then, I secretly retreated into the darkness. This time, I was delighted to find that the bee man didn’t move and didn’t seem to notice me at all.

Fatty continued to help block me from view, and when he was almost out of sight, he made a gesture at me which meant: It’s up to you.

Holding my breath, I finally retreated completely into the darkness and started climbing the cliff bit by bit.

The tape sealing my nose and mouth had a small gap through which a little air could come through, but I barely breathed as I tried to get as far away as possible.

Once I climbed to the spot where Xiao Hua and I had been chatting before, I looked down and saw the lights below. I pulled my nose free from the tape and took a deep breath.

Fatty immediately coughed below, and I knew that Jin Xingsan must have reacted.

I quickly held my breath again, stopped observing the area, and continued to climb up for about four or five meters. I found a crevice in the rock, stuck my head in, and released the mouthful of air I had been holding.

Fatty’s cough didn’t come from below, so I knew that I had basically escaped. A refreshing feeling of regaining my freedom suddenly spread throughout my whole body.

The release of this pressure cleared away a lot of the fatigue I was feeling, so I adjusted my breathing, loaded my gun with ammo, and continued to climb.

The area was getting darker and darker, so I turned on a very dim light that sat at my neckline. It normally looked like a button, but it was actually a small light that ran on a button battery.

The light could only illuminate up to a distance of about one meter, but in fact, all I could see were the shadows within that range. Any details pertaining to those shadows were completely incomprehensible. It felt more like using the indicator light on a walkie-talkie to illuminate your way.

I climbed all the way up until the darkness above was like a real entity. That was when I knew that I had finally reached the top. The area above actually contained a pile of corpses, so I made my light a little brighter and looked at it using my peripheral vision. I saw that the pile of corpses almost reached the top and the ones that were embedded in the cracks and depressions in the rock were all ancient.

There were bronze chains everywhere at the top and the bronze censer was located at the center of them. I reached out and cautiously touched a bronze chain; it seemed like I could climb on it.

In this position, I listened carefully to see if I could hear any signs of Xiao Hua and Poker-Face. When I didn’t hear any sounds at all, I felt a trace of anxiety surge up in my heart.

But I had made it this far, so I couldn’t retreat now. I put a safety anchor in one of the crevices on the cliff, unfastened my safety buckle, and hooked it to the new anchor. Once that was done, I climbed onto the bronze chain and began crawling cautiously towards the censer.

This was a very strange experience, because I couldn’t actually see what I was holding. I was completely blind in this area so close to the top, but I could use my peripheral vision to tell that I was crawling along the chain.

At this distance, I could reach out and touch the corpses at the top, but they all seemed to have dried out and weren’t reacting to my presence.

It wasn’t long before I climbed to the edge of the bronze censer. Based on its appearance, I was now completely certain that it was from the pre-Zhanhan period. It was a miracle that it had been preserved like this.

Since I could only hang upside down on the chain, I tried to hook my foot on another chain nearby, flip myself upright, and hold onto the two chains at the same time so that I could lie on them like a gecko. That way, I could look at the surface of the censer more comfortably.

There were many inscriptions on it that were faintly discernible, so I used my peripheral vision to read them word by word.

I soon discovered that it was a bronze censer for conferment. It probably meant that there was a cave here and the emperor knew that there was a dragon god living in it. The dragon god probably ate tens of thousands of people when it left the cave and almost drove the local people to extinction, so the emperor hung the bronze censer up to suppress it. He would allow the local people to offer sacrifices to it twice a year and ordered the dragon god not to willfully hurt people. If it could do that, then he would confer upon it the title of mountain god and let it take charge of the area.

At that time, bronze was as expensive as gold, so probably the only reason such sacrificial measures could be taken was because the emperor himself had intervened.

I looked up along the censer using my peripheral vision and really did see a hole in it. This should be the place where the sun was shining through. It probably led aboveground, but it was still dark now, which meant that the sky outside was still dark.

Dragon God? If this beast ate people every time it left the cave and ended up eating tens of thousands of people, then that really is a huge natural disaster.

This method of suppression using huge metal objects was very common during floods and the objects were usually iron and bronze cauldrons. In many places where the water system was developed and prone to floods, an unusually sharp iron sword would be hung under the bridge at the core waterway. It was believed that the flood was a result of the dragon passing through the river system, so the sword was affixed under the bridge with its blade drawn right on the water’s surface. This would warn the Dragon King that the water level shouldn’t be too high when he passed through; otherwise, the sword would cut his back.

What does this all mean?

I tried to lift my upper body. This censer was extremely old, and when I used my peripheral vision to take a look, it even seemed to be filled with a demonic aura. To put it bluntly, this was a magical tool left here thousands of years ago to suppress evil spirits. It should have made me feel a little creeped out, but it was the only man-made thing I had seen during this period of time.

In the huge expanse of darkness, these ancient words appeared at the end of my strange climbing journey. It’s difficult to express the feeling in my heart at that time, because if it weren’t for this thing, my self-esteem as a human felt like it was going to be swallowed up by the huge ancient god that existed here in the darkness.

But my heart felt a little more stable now that I could see that the ancients had arrived in this place and tried to contend with the power in the darkness.

I looked down again and noticed that the darkness below really did look like it was alive. When it came to this area, the fear in your heart made you hope that there really was a god here. That was why you had such a huge need for faith.

I climbed to the top of the bronze censer and carefully climbed on top of its body, but it started shaking, which immediately caused the chains to make a rattling sound.

I tried my best to keep the shaking to a minimum as I slowly climbed to the area directly above the bronze censer’s opening and used my peripheral vision to look inside.

I found that the censer was filled with a liquid that was completely black. There was an ancient corpse soaking in it that was completely leatherized, but its skin was still white, unlike other leatherized corpses which were generally purple.

This ancient corpse had originally been wearing an outfit made of gold-threaded silk, but now all the silk was rotten and looked blackened, which made it hard to see what it originally looked like.

The corpse also wore a black, purple, and gold crown with gems on it that reflected the light in bright pink, yellow, green, and blue colors. It was probably the local colored quartz here.

This was a female corpse, which must have been a sacrifice to the dragon god at that time. I couldn’t believe that a corpse from thousands of years ago was so well preserved.

I turned my button light up to its maximum setting, looked carefully, and saw that this female corpse’s fingers were very long. There was a possibility that she was related to the Zhang family. I also noticed that her chest under the water looked like it was still moving up and down, but the way it was moving didn’t seem like she was breathing.

I touched my flashlight, thought about it for a second, and then turned it on, immediately illuminating the whole underwater situation. The female corpse was pale and scary, and when the flashlight came on, I saw the body suddenly twist.

At the same time, I also saw that two pipa locks(2) had been inserted into the corpse’s shoulders, locking it in the bronze censer. The corpse’s skin still had a lot of spots that were decaying, so I could see that metal rods had been pierced through the corpse’s skin.

This was a protective cage that was made with a living person. The so-called “protective cage” was something that was usually used to catch snakes and fish, and there were barbs at the entrance so that the prey couldn’t get out once it went in. Based on the corpse’s pained expression, the metal rods in her body interspersed to form a kind of hidden cage under her skin. They had pierced her with these metal rods when she was alive, put the pipa locks in her, locked her in the bronze censer, and put her inside this cave, using her body to catch something.

Her stomach was now moving up and down, so did that mean she was still holding onto whatever she had caught? Did this cage still work?

<Chapter 64><Table of Contents><Chapter 66>


TN Notes:

(1) I was not aware this was a thing but apparently it’s a topical skin treatment for minor cuts and sores. The mixture of chemicals create a polymeric layer which binds to the skin (like a spray on band-aid). Could also be called “pflaster-spray”.

(2) According to reader Seph in the comments below, pipa locks usually refer to having meat hooks inserted into the shoulder blade area. Something like this:


11 thoughts on “Chapter 65 Conferring Dragons

  1. Yay for finally outsmarting that creepy thing. Just to climb up and find…MORE creepy things!

    Lol. But it wouldn’t be author’s style not to include as many strange things as he possibly can. Just hopefully no more Hei Feizi. 🙏


    1. Wu Xie finally got away from it but poor Fatty is still stuck with it 😱

      And with Wu Xie’s luck, I’m just waiting for snakes to start magically appearing in this place (maybe falling down from the sky like rain 🤢)

      Liked by 2 people

  2. If he leaves this one unfinished, I’ll probably go mad!
    In other news, I’ve introduced my little sister to the Pits, so I have someone to go mad with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Honestly every chapter I just end up shrieking SWEET JESUS LORD WHY as one more hideous thing after another is revealed! Even the idea of this cage thing is so horrible, let alone the creepiness of the lady 😖

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi!

    To clarify, Pipa bone is a term used in Wuxia to describe the shoulder blade area, and pipa bone lock usually refers to having cruel meat hooks inserted into this area to keep the prisoner powerless and immobile.

    If you watched Word of Honor, there is a scene where this is demonstrated when the main character is kept imprisoned in Ep 30.


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