Chapter 20: Ancestors of the Crocodile
From the direction of the Great Lei Yin Temple came a bone-chilling roar, as though some ancient beast from an age old wilderness was shattering the earth, after being released from its seal it’s roar shook the mountains and rivers, affected the stars and moon in the sky and let one feel shudders coming from their soul.
It was suddenly peaceful again and the terrifying roars had dissipated, all that was left were the thunderous sounds of the dust storm.
“What is that thing?”
“Are there other life forms on Mars?”
“In the legends, Shakyamuni sealed many different kinds of beasts and monsters, maybe the place where he sealed these monsters was near the Great Lei Yin Temple.”
They had only briefly discussed the matter but everyone was feeling anxious. As modern people they had never believed in these legends, however with all that they had experienced thus far, the frightening possibilities held in the legends made their hearts experience a wave of emotions.
If their guesses were right, their situation was especially precarious. With the disintegration of Great Lei Yin Temple, there was no longer Buddha or God and they were left alone to face whatever mythical demon was released, the outcome would be disastrous.
“Today many of our beliefs have been challenged making it difficult for us to comprehend fully what is going on……”
“The mythical demons mentioned in legends may be coming for us!”
When they thought of the possible scenarios that could arise, everyone felt as though their bodies were encased in ice.
Endless possibilities and an unknown future made one fearful and worried.
At this moment, there was still a corpse in front of everyone, the ground was dyed red and the smell of blood permeated the air. This was a reminder to the group that the situation was very bad, there was also an unknown entity that had taken a life right in front of their eyes.
The head of the corpse let out a weird noise that made many people feel anxious.
The sounds of eating and chewing could be heard and this made it very difficult to bear. This was after all a human head and the unknown entity seemed to be inside having a meal, causing their goosebumps to stand on end.
The sound of bone being grinded down could be heard as though there were several sharp teeth cutting into the bone, the atmosphere was unbearably tense and depressing.
Nobody spoke and the five coloured stone altar became silent once again. Many people were terrified and kept silent.
This was a mental torture, the sounds of eating and biting of bones could be heard and when the noises came together it was like a symphony from hell itself making it excruciating for the soul.
Many female students clutched their mouths and wanted to cry but did not dare to, the scenario that unfolded in front of them caused them to be on the verge of break down.
Not everyone was frightened, those who held Buddha artifacts had a modicum of courage in them. Pang Bo was usually ferocious and under the tense atmosphere he dragged the Great Lei Yin Temple plaque wanting to smash the skull.
Ye Fan held him back and said: “Don’t act recklessly.”
At this moment the skull that was drenched in blood let out a splatter of blood and some white substance, this was nauseating as it was clearly brain matter flowing out.
Thereafter from the hole on the skull emerged an awl-like black skull that was small and sharp covered in scales.
“What is that thing?”
Everyone could not help it as they backed away, even Ye Fan and Pang Bo also stepped back.
A creature that looked like a crocodile, it had crawled out from the bloody hole in the skull and its body was covered in blood and brain matter making their scalps tingle.
It was no longer than ten centimetres and was only about as thick as a finger. It looked like a snake but had the features of a crocodile without the legs. Its body was covered in black scales and it felt as though it was a creature that had come from hell itself.
The blood and brain matter that had stained its black scales was especially disturbing and many people felt nauseated as they felt intense fear.
This unknown creature had crawled out of the bloody hole onto the top of the skull, its small eyes were cold as it silently stared at the crowd. It seemed to be highly intelligent and not a lower form of life.
Seven classmates who had been with them for four years were now gone forever and it was caused by the bite of this ugly creature.
Its eyes were extremely cruel as it coldly glanced at the group, it seemed as though it were looking at them as though they were its food rather than similar levels of existences.
“Damn mother of a useless thing, even your hair hasn’t grown yet, you actually killed seven of my fellow classmates, your father will smash you to death!” Pango Bo lifted that bronze plaque and forcefully waved it towards the unknown creature.
The sound of thunder resounded and light came bursting out of the bronze plaque as it surged forward forming a net of light.
The unknown creature was very swift as though it understood that the bronze plaque was dangerous and became a black light, dodging the lights that had almost enveloped it.
Ye Fan held his ancient bronze lamp and blew forcefully at the flame contained within, soon a blazing divine flame shot out and surged forward.
The creature that was barely a finger in thickness and ten centimetres in length let out a shrill cry, the sound was like the shriek of a devil and the buzzing in their ear drums caused their backs to fill with cold sweat.
It was difficult to imagine how such a small creature could let out such a loud and frightening noise.
The flame that Ye Fan had blown out only flew a distance of three metres and did not swallow the entire creature. The fire had clipped its tail and half of the tail had immediately broken off from its body.
It stared viciously at Ye Fan as it carried an expression that could be seen on humans, extremely ferocious and it’s mouth was open exposing its sharp white teeth within as it shrilly screamed at Ye Fan.
“What sort of creature is this?!” Many classmates at the back were filled with terror and even those who held Buddha’s artifacts did not dare to step forward.
“This useless thing, your eyes are so vicious looking, I’m going to smash you to bits!” Pang Bo was very ferocious and showed no signs of fear as he once again lifted the bronze plaque and rushed forward: “Killing seven of my fellow classmates, now we’ve only burnt off your tail, go and die!”
Pang Bo’s body was shrouded in the dazzling light emitted from the bronze plaque, he seemed like an angry war god as he exuded a ferocious aura, the bronze plaque was trembling as Buddhist chants filled the sky giving off rumbling noises.
Ye Fan stood at the other side to surround the creature that only had half its body remaining, the fire within the bronze lamp once again shot forth like an angry dragon and the temperature of the fire seemed to burn the air itself.
At this moment Zhou Yi, Wang Zi Wen and the others rushed forward and wielded their Buddha artifacts against the crocodile-like creature.
Although it was surrounded, the creature was too fast and like a shimmer of black light it continually darted around the large altar making it difficult for the group to target it.
The shrill scream sounded again as the ferocious and frightening creature was chased by the classmates, it seemed to be incredibly angry and filled with resentment as it continually screamed like nine angry ghosts had come together to wail.
Sounds of the glowing light being penetrated filled the air as several similar looking crocodile creatures pierced through the light and entered the large altar. Their lengths did not exceed ten centimetres and looked precisely like the first creature they came in contact with. Their gazes were filled with hatred and were like evil ghosts as they stared at the group.
“How can there be so many?”
“What is this creature, could it be that Mars is their home?”
Everyone felt helpless, they were not gods and did not know how to properly use their artifacts. They could only rely on the lights emitted from the artifacts to prevent themselves from getting killed and with the appearance of so many of the ferocious creatures it was impossible to kill them all.
At this point a “Zaah Zaah!” sound could be heard and outside the glow hundreds of the crocodile-like creature could be seen.
The people who had not acted and were hiding behind Ye Fan and the rest had started to tremble, with so many of the ferocious creatures even if they had Buddha’s artifact it would seem impossible to defend against the whole group of them!
“Pang Bo stop chasing, let’s group up!” Ye Fan loudly shouted at Pang Bo.
With the appearance of so many of the crocodile-like creatures, it would be impossible to kill off all of them and being on the defensive would be better. They just had to wait for the large altar to gather enough energy to open the ancient route among the stars.
Suddenly, a loud roar that made one’s soul tremble once again sounded from the direction of the Great Lei Yin Temple.
Following this soul shocking roar, the dust storm outside seemed to settle down and it was silent all around besides the rumbling roar of the beast.
The ground continued to shudder and even the five coloured stone altar was shaking, the typhoon had been thoroughly suppressed.
“Great Lei Yin Temple…… was actually a nest of ferocious monsters!” Someone said in a trembling voice.
The group looked beyond the hazy glow and saw more and more of the frightening creatures gathering, the direction they were coming from was precisely the Great Lei Yin Temple and the ground was covered in pitch black scales. It was clear that there were tens of thousands of them.
Suddenly, there was a violent shaking and within a thousand metres a dreadful pressure enveloped the area, from the heavens to the yellow river in hell this simply shook the foundations of heaven and earth!
Although there was a dust storm there that separated them from the sound, everyone could see two frightening eyes that looked like lanterns, piercing through the darkness from the ruins of the Great Lei Yin Temple.
It seemed like that area was going through a volcanic eruption and stones were haphazardly flying everywhere, there were even huge boulders the size of small houses that had landed heavily in the vicinity of the five coloured stone altar.
“It’s the foundation of the Great Lei Yin Temple…… it’s finally fallen apart and some frightening thing that was sealed there has come out!”
If this were the case, even if they had a few artifacts left behind by the gods it would likely be insufficient.
“I think I know what are these crocodile-like ferocious creatures…..” A female classmate said with a shaky voice.
The Tibetans were especially reverent of the Buddhist teachings and almost everyone believed in Buddha. This female student had gone to Tibet and visited Jokhang* and Ramoche* Temple, from there she had heard a local Tibetan speak of some ancient legends.
[T/N* Buddhist monasteries in Tibet]
It was said that under the Great Lei Yin Temple that Buddha lived in, it was not a pure and virtuous piece of land but rather sealed many unequalled demons and at the first level of sealing there was a crocodile ancestor, an ancient crocodile god with matchless power but had eventually been sealed by Buddha.
“What you’re saying is, the sacred ground that Great Lei Yin Temple sits on has sealed many peerless demons?”
“The old Tibetan Buddhist who studied Buddhism told me that.”
Hearing this, everyone felt their bodies turn cold. If this were really the case, there was definitely a crocodile ancestor that would be emerging from the direction of the Great Lei Yin Temple and these ugly creatures were its descendants.
Ye Fan frowned as he said: “I have previously seen some records in an ancient text……”
In that ancient text it was recorded that there was a limbless ‘crocodile’ whose body was as hard as diamond and could easily pierce through flesh and bone, it was known as the crocodile god.
Zhou Yi nodded saying: “I’ve also seen an ancient text with a similar interpretation…..”
According to legend and recorded in Buddhist teachings the ancestor god of the ‘crocodiles’ had been sealed and its descendants had never seen the light of day again.
Everyone was feeling the surreality of the situation. A legend that had always been seen as just a story had actually become a reality and this made them feel fear and shock.
“The old Tibetan said that the crocodile ancestor was sealed at the first level under the Great Lei Yin Temple, does that mean that there’s actually the second or even the third level…..” A female student said in a trembling voice.
Nobody had an answer, if the crocodile ancestor really resurfaced that would be the end of them.
The “Zaah Zaah!” sounds continued to transmit over and the tens of thousands of little ‘crocodiles’ were struggling to pierce through the veil of light and enter the large altar.
Suddenly, the five coloured stone altar started to shake and in the sky appeared five ancient symbols in five different colours, as though there were countless flashing stars in the sky. The image of the Tai Chi Eight Trigrams was forming and this was a prelude to the opening of the ancient route among the stars.
However, about a thousand metres away at the ruins near the Great Lei Yin Temple the lantern-like eyes had risen further and it was clear that any moment it would escape from its confines and emerge on the surface.
Escape from this place, escape from Mars! These were the thoughts that filled everyone’s minds. Many people were praying that the ancient route among the stars would open as soon as possible, even if they were to float endlessly in the desolate universe it would be more comforting than Mars.
[T/N note: We can’t find any sources regarding snakes/serpents/nagas/crocodiles sealed under the temple, so for now the name will be the literal translation; crocodile. Do let us know if you know anything regarding this monster. Closest thing we found is the Makara]