Monster Pet Evolution - Chapter 575
Chapter 575 – The Manor
Chapter 575: The Manor
Flamy glared at the Undead Shadowbird. With a loud boom, it exploded into smithereens in the sky.
When Gao Peng was back on the ground, he told the rest of the party what he had learned without sparing any detail. A subtle change in expression crossed everyone’s faces.
Most of them were under the impression that they could at least explore other new environments beyond where they were right then. Who knew it would be the same dull gray for hundreds of miles… The air around them grew tense.
“Why don’t we just conduct a few measurements on the temperature and humidity of this place?” asked one of the researchers in a small voice.
Even though his voice was barely a whisper, everyone else heard him loud and clear. Some of them nodded in agreement. However, others weren’t happy about this. “We spent so much money and brought so many people here just to measure these things? What the hell do you take us for? Your babysitters?”
Most tended to talk tough when they had the bite to back up their bark. Those who were able to be there were the best of the best in the Huaxia region. There was only a handful of the common folk who had earned the right to call themselves that. None of them were about to turn back any time soon.
“You have the strongest trainers in the Huaxia region in one place. What do you have to fear?” someone said.
“Yeah, even if everything looks the same, we still owe it to ourselves to see what kind of monsters live here,” said a corpulent man in a yellow robe whose hair was slicked back.
Gao Peng simply looked at them without a word. Some of these people’s familiars were on the weaker end of the spectrum. Those who were actual master trainers in the group remained silent throughout the whole exchange, especially those from the ancient clan. Gao Peng noticed that some of them were giving each other knowing glances, as if they knew something about this place that they weren’t telling anyone else.
Gao Peng blinked a few times at Bei Qing Yan. Do you know anything about this place?
Bei Qing Yan looked at him quizzically. Are you hungry? She then produced an unopened bar of chocolate from her bag and offered it to Gao Peng.
Gao Peng stared at it, dumbfounded. How could she be thinking about food at a time like this?
Seeing that they weren’t close to making a decision, Gao Peng stepped forth and said, “How about this: we’ll split into two groups. Those who wish to conduct their research here can stay here; those who want to explore the place can just do it on their own.”
“Didn’t we already agree that we’ll be exploring this place as a group?” said the group leader, Li An, in an attempt to defuse the situation.
“Do you think it would be more efficient to operate as a group at this point?” asked Gao Peng, pointing at the rest of the group. “I’m going to be straight with you: everyone here can’t wait to get away from each other as soon as possible. We all want the largest chunk of the cake for ourselves. With so many people in one place, it would just be difficult to call dibs on something.”
That last part was the real clincher. The only thing that could drive most people to walk barefoot into hell was profit. Few were willing to sacrifice their time and energy to do something for free.
The strong found it repulsive to associate themselves with the weak, while the weak feared that the strong would keep everything for themselves. The power differences between the strong and the weak here were just too stark to ignore. There was no way either party would sincerely agree to cooperate with the other. Everyone wanted to believe that they were going to be the lucky ones that would stumble upon something good.
Li An was in an awkward position. Even though he already knew that there was no point in him being the leader of the group, he hadn’t expected to lose his position so soon.
However, he had expected this much. He was already mentally prepared for this.
“All right then. We’ll meet up here in a week. We’ll wait another day for anyone who fails to show up at the agreed-upon time. In that time, all of you are free to explore your surroundings. If you see someone in danger… try to help them out,” said Li An, smiling weakly.
“Then let’s get a move on.”
“Happy hunting, everyone!”
The trainers mounted their familiars before heading out in various directions with their respective groups. Few of them chose to go in the same direction.
“Li An, you and your men will come with me.”
Li An, who had already been ordered beforehand to accompany Gao Peng, nodded. “Understood.” He turned to the seven researchers in white lab coats and said, “We’ll be following Mr. Gao later. Try to keep up.”
Most of the researchers seemed quite young. Only two of them looked to be around 50 years of age. The other five looked like they were still in their twenties or thirties.
Gao Peng remembered seeing vague signs of buildings in a small dense forest to the east. “Let’s go in that direction,” said Gao Peng while pointing east.
The others didn’t object to this. Gao Peng led the way, with the research team following close behind. All around them stood trees without a single leaf on their branches. It was as if no tree was allowed to grow their own canopies in the underworld. Every flower and blade of grass they came across in their path looked alien.
The researchers exclaimed in amazement at every little thing in their path, like Sun Wukong, who had stumbled upon a garden filled with peach trees of immortality. Perhaps due to the loss of one of their companions, these people proceeded with their experiments cautiously.
The road ahead was fraught with all kinds of danger. One of the researchers had the misfortune of encountering a lantern-shaped plant that swelled up suddenly when he walked a bit too close to it. It was as big as a watermelon. Expanding tenfold, the plant fell down towards the researcher like a hat.
The “brim” of the hat was lined with sharp, fearsome teeth; no ordinary person could survive such a terrible bite.
Boom! A fireball flew out, reducing the yellow lantern-shaped monster disguised as a plant into a pile of ash.
The researcher thanked Gao Peng profusely for saving his life. In truth, Gao Peng had been aware of the monster’s presence beforehand. However, he had ordered Flamy not to act without his order.
These people could take his help for granted if he had to pull them out of a tight spot every single time. Giving them near-death experiences was the best way to let them know he wouldn’t be around all the time to help them out.
“Is that a building? Are there actual people living here?” Someone pointed at what appeared to be a rundown manor up ahead.
“Did someone else come here before us?”
“Sure looks that way,” said Li An, frowning.
There was something familiar about the building in front of them. It looked, in all respects, like a three-story manor. There was also something strange about its appearance. It looked a bit too… organized. There were three windows on each floor, each of them arranged neatly above the others on the building’s facade.
On the top floor was a balcony with wooden railings, and a triangular structure was at the top of the building. Wind howled noisily through the openings of the manor. It looked haunted, especially when surrounded by the leafless trees of the forest.
“Someone’s coming out of the manor,” said one of the younger researchers under his breath while pointing in the manor’s direction.