1275 Unknown Plane
The metal gate was completely golden, its surface covered with mysterious divine patterns.
As the gate materialized fully, the divine patterns on it began to shift and change, looking like little snakes in various positions.
It only took a moment for the divine patterns on the golden gate to alter completely.
Once the divine patterns had stopped changing and the new design was fixed in place, a rumble sounded out of nowhere. At the same time, the gate seemed to be pushed open slowly by a pair of invisible hands, and the sound of heavy objects being dragged over the ground could be heard in the air.
In approximately the time it took for ten breaths, the gate was finally wide open.
Behind the gate, there was nothing but absolute darkness, certainly not the Dimensional Whirlpool that Lin Huang had imagined. The silence was absolute too as if nothing was there.
Just as Lin Huang experienced some doubt, King Kong, the God Capital elder who was standing nearby, spoke up suddenly.
"Let's go in!"
As soon as he finished speaking, the 12 participants from God Capital turned into 12 streams of light and made straight for the gate without hesitation.
Almost simultaneously, the team leaders of the several other lord-level organizations gave their orders.
One by one the participants changed into light streams and charged through the golden door one after another.
Meanwhile, Buried Heaven had yet to give the orders for the Death Sickle team. Lin Huang was not in a hurry either; instead, he observed what was happening at the gate.
As the light streams charged forward, they penetrated the darkness behind the gate and immediately vanished. Their auras could no longer be detected at all.
If not for the faint ripples undulating in the darkness behind the gate, Lin Huang would have never thought the gate possessed any sort of dimensional ability.
Only after all five of the lord-level teams had gone through did Buried Heaven nod at Lin Huang and the others in the Death Sickle team.
"Let's go in."
Without further hesitation, Lin Huang and his three companions turned into four light streams and charged through the gate with the participants of the remaining top grade-6 organizations.
The moment they crossed the threshold, Lin Huang felt as if he had plunged through the surface of water. Immediately, however, his five senses were all cut off. Sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste seemed to have been stripped away in the blink of an eye. Not only was he unable to activate his Divine Telekinesis, but even his sense of time was also obscured.
Lin Huang did not know how much time had passed before a light appeared before him suddenly.
The next instant, his senses and abilities all returned to his body.
He landed slowly on a large expanse of ground with deep fissures running through it.
A check with Divine Telekinesis revealed that this was a barren planet. To be exact, it was a dead planet with absolutely no living creatures.
Not only were there no animals, but there were also no signs of any living plants, insects, or even microorganisms.
However, Lin Huang could not help frowning a little.
This was because he had discovered quite a few vestiges of former habitation on this planet in the form of city ruins. Although the buildings were not tall, they had definitely been places inhabited by some group species.
"All life has been wiped out; even the mines have ceased functioning…" Lin Huang squinted a little. "The Bug Tribe is the only tribe that would do this!
"In other words, this planet that I'm currently standing on was once conquered by Bug Tribes…so there's a definite possibility that I'm currently within the territorial boundaries of a Bug Tribe." This was not good news for Lin Huang.
Heavenly god-level powerhouses existed in the Great Heaven Territory.
If the Bug Tribe army's Bug King or Bug Queen was a heavenly god-level powerhouse, Lin Huang would not be able to survive an encounter with them.
"I hope things aren't as terrible as I imagine…" In a flash, Lin Huang disappeared from where he was standing and reappeared in the middle of a ruined city.
While using Divine Telekinesis to do a close-range sweep of the area, he was also observing his surroundings.
"The hoof prints on the ground were obviously made by Heavy-armored Onyx Bugs; the blade marks on the ruined walls would probably have been made by the Demonic Sword-armed Mantis. The tunnels in the wall show burn marks; Devil Cannon Bugs were probably responsible for that…"
For Lin Huang, who had mastered the galactic hive and accessed the Bug Tribe Queen Mother's memory as well, most Bug Tribes were not unfamiliar to him. A glance was all he needed to ascertain which Bug Tribes had subjugated this particular city.
"Judging by the traces of battle remaining, the Bug Tribes that attacked were at virtual god-level combat strength. In other words, their Bug King or Bug Queen would have only been at the level of a Virtual God. Even if they were True Gods, they were most likely only beginner-stage True Gods." Lin Huang was more than a little relieved to have drawn these conclusions.
"Based on what's left, the extermination of life on this planet probably happened within the last half a year…" At this point in his speculations, Lin Huang could not help but frown again, "Bug Tribes only plunder a planet's resources and its life. They can retrieve any information they need from the planet's living creatures, there's no need for them to steal civilization documents. There should at least be some of those left behind here!"
"All I have to do is to find some civilization documents, and I should be able to confirm where exactly I am. If I'm lucky I might even get a star map right away…"
Lin Huang decided to stay on this dead planet to continue his explorations because he could not identify his location at all. The only thing he knew was that he was nowhere within the exploration zone, so the star maps that Death Sickle provided were no help at all.
If he were to leave now, he might search for a month and not be able to find a second planet with resources.
Furthermore, the Great Heaven Territory was only open to explorers for a month.
As he stood above the ruined city, Lin Huang spread his Divine Telekinesis for a thorough scan. A moment later, his frown deepened and his expression became more and more unpleasant.
While the Divine Telekinesis scan did not give him anything particularly valuable in terms of information, it allowed him to access many scenes that roused his ire.
In a bedroom on the second floor of a two-story building, the pink sheet on the bed was stained with blood. On it was a ruined fabric doll with only half its head intact, also covered in blood.
Someone had clearly been dragged off the bed, as the bloodstains extended from the bed to the ground. The gory trail ended at the doorway in a huge pool of blood.
Lin Huang could almost imagine the scene—a little girl of five or six between a bug beast's jaws, being dragged to the door before being eaten.
The kitchen on the first floor of another three-story building was a shambles. Pots and dishes were overturned and broken on the floor, with traces of dried oil still to be seen on the tiles. That would probably have been soup that was spilled.
Dark blood seeped through the remaining oil stains on the floor.
In a building not far away, the bookshelves in one of the studies had been completely wrecked. The floor was full of torn books and bloodstains.
There was a little photo frame in one of the crevices under the ruined study table. The glass on the frame was broken, but the picture inside was still intact.
It was a photograph showing a family of four.
The man of the house looked like he was in his early 30s. His face was covered with stubble, and a little boy of four or five was sitting on his lap making a funny face. The lady next to him had a gentle smile on her face as she carried a swaddled infant in her arms. The baby was smiling up at its mother.