Yin Yuanxiang, Fu Tian, and Jin Zhihui all sighed with emotion. Were it not for Ling Han, it was very likely that they would have all died here.
Regardless of how powerful or freakish they were, how could they defeat a puppet at the pseudo-Sun Moon Tier by themselves?
Yang Tiecheng was a prime example of this!
At the mention of Yang Tiecheng, everyone sighed in sympathy. He was someone who could stick by his principles no matter the situation. In the world of today, such a quality was truly rare and invaluable.
With the battle over and done with, Fu Tian started to treat his wounds. He had gritted his teeth and participated in the battle just then as he hadn't wanted to be a burden on everyone else. He had an extremely competitive and proud personality.
"Master, should we pursue that legless old man?" the Asura Demon Emperor asked.
Ling Han pondered for a moment before shaking his head, and said, "Forget about it. He's the ruler of this island, and he's been here for tens of thousands of years as well. He definitely won't let us find him."
"But if we don't dispose of him, he'll continue to commit abhorrent crimes!" Shui Yanyu said.
"Then let's have a look around here to see if the old thief has left any clues," Ling Han replied. "In fact, we know nothing about that old thief. If we understand his history and personality, it will be much easier to find him."
"Master is so wise!" the Asura Demon Emperor said obsequiously.
Ling Han glanced over, and tossed a puppet bear toward him. "Enter this puppet instead."
The Asura Demon Emperor was slightly confused. Wasn't his current puppet stronger? It was at the pseudo-Sun Moon Tier, and its battle prowess was several times stronger than that of the puppet bear. However, he suddenly came to a realization after seeing the look of disgust in Ling Han's eyes.
As a human, his master naturally detested refining human corpses into puppets.
He didn't dare disobey Ling Han, and he immediately entered the body of the puppet bear. These puppets didn't possess any free will or life force, so entering and exiting them couldn't be any easier.
Ling Han incinerated both human puppets. He had only kept them to battle Pei Ji, so now that their battle was over, it was also right for him to give the deceased a proper send-off.
They started to look for clues in the small workshop.
Ling Han hadn't held high hopes, yet they managed to find a diary that was kept by Pei Ji. This diary detailed the process and reason for Pei Ji's abominable hobby.
"So it turns out that the male and female puppets were his senior brother and senior sister. The three of them were all disciples of the same puppeteer.
"He secretly loved his senior sister, yet she married his senior brother.
"He didn't let his emotions show, yet after their master died, he poisoned the two of them before restraining and then refining them into puppets.
"No wonder the male puppet was stabbed full of sabers and swords! It was because Pei Ji hated him tremendously!
"What an absolute freak! He even refined the woman that he loved into a puppet!"
The diary also had a detailed description of how he had refined his senior brother and senior sister. Their insults, reprimands, fury, terror, and all kinds of other things were all carefully recorded. It was as if Pei Ji wanted to relive that experience through reading his diary.
"What kind of hopelessness would one experience when they're betrayed by their junior brother and refined into a puppet alive?" Shui Yanyu's eyes were burning with anger as she shook her head.
"So, one can't simply focus on talent when taking in disciples. The most important factor is still their character. Otherwise, it's no different from raising a wolf." Ling Han also sighed with emotion, yet his words sent ripples of panic through the Asura Demon Emperor's mind. Was his master giving him a veiled warning?
Right at this moment, a sword light lit up and pierced toward Ling Han's back.
This strike was both quick and vicious, and it was more so completely unexpected. The battle had already ended, and there were only people they had fought alongside in this room. Who would suddenly attack Ling Han?
The sword pierced deep into Ling Han's body. Ling Han roared loudly and struck behind him. Meanwhile, the Asura Demon Emperor also came to his senses, and hurriedly let out a growl before swinging his bear paws toward the assailant.
The assailant didn't have time to retrieve their sword, so they could only release it and leap back. They instantly retreated 16 or so meters before descending like a cloud and landing lightly on their feet.
The assailant was none other than Yin Yuanxiang!
"Ling Han!" Shui Yanyu shouted in shock, and immediately held Ling Han in support as tears rolled down her cheeks. The sword had run through Ling Han's body, and only the hilt was still visible on the outside.
Jin Zhihui was both shocked and enraged as he glared at Yin Yuanxiang, and he roared, "W-what are you doing?!"
Only Fu Tian remained sitting on the ground, yet it was clear that his muscles were already tight with tension.
Ling Han simply stared at Yin Yuanxiang. In a raspy voice, he said, "So the culprit on the ship was actually you!"
"How so?" The careful expression that Yin Yuanxiang had worn this entire time suddenly changed into an expression of pride and arrogance. Not only that, but her aura also changed dramatically, instantly shooting up to the consummate level of the Mountain River Tier.
Ling Han coughed a few times as his face grew even paler, and said, "Just before Zhou Gaoyang died, he said that the culprit wasn't him."
Yin Yuanxiang had successfully stabbed Ling Han, so she was in no hurry at all. "In order to stay alive, it's only natural that he would attempt to shift the blame elsewhere"
Ling Han shook his head, and said, "If the culprit were him, he would have most likely only begged for forgiveness rather than try to shift the blame."
Yin Yuanxiang was slightly surprised, and said, "So… you started to suspect me?"
"Indeed." Ling Han nodded, and said, "I was thinking that since the Dark Night Hall could send an assassin, why couldn't they send two? One in the open… and one in hiding!"
Yin Yuanxiang hesitated for a moment before bursting into loud laughter. "Spot on! There's no need for me to deceive you any longer. I'm indeed an assassin from the Dark Night Hall! However, don't even think about buying time. That sword is covered in potent poison, and even elites at the low extreme of the Sun Moon Tier would die if they were pierced by it!"
Shui Yanyu was finally overcome with shock. She was extremely confident in Ling Han's regeneration ability, yet poison was a completely different story.
Ling Han smiled faintly, and said, "I have to thank you for admitting to this. I was only suspicious before, but I'm finally certain now!"
He stood up and raised his left arm slightly, and the sword that was "stabbed" into him instantly fell onto the ground with a clang.
It turned out that the sword hadn't pierced his body at all! Rather, it had merely been held between his arm and chest!
"What?!" The expression on Yin Yuanxiang's pretty face changed drastically, and she said incredulously, "I clearly stabbed the sword through your heart! The location was definitely right! Ah, unless…" She stared at Ling Han, and continued, "Unless you were prepared this entire time and had already shifted the locations of your bones!"
A smile blossomed across Ling Han's face, and he said, "Since I was suspicious about there being another assassin from the Dark Night Hall among us, how could I not have my guard up?"
"But why did you suspect me?" Yin Yuanxiang couldn't fathom the reason, and she said, "I clearly used a secret technique to suppress my cultivation level. Even elites at the lower end of the Sun Moon Tier shouldn't have been able to see through my disguise, much less you!"
Ling Han nodded, and replied, "Your disguise was indeed good. However, when we were surrounded by the puppets, you still ended up using power that far exceeded what you should have been capable of. That raised suspicion in my mind, and also caused me to become more wary of you."
Yin Yuanxiang was slightly dazed upon hearing this answer. The situation had been so chaotic at that time, yet Ling Han still had the leisure to keep an eye on the entire battleground? What kind of freak was he?
This couldn't be helped. Who told Ling Han's divine sense to be far, far superior compared to that of ordinary cultivators at the medium extreme?
"Since the simple method didn't work, I'll have to resort to the more difficult method!" Yin Yuanxiang chuckled coldly, and drew another sword as a frosty and sinister aura emanated from her body.
She was an elite at the consummate level!