Chapter 683: Chu Yang’s Struggle
Translator: Sparrow Translations Editor: Sparrow Translations
Inside the Celestial Small World, upon seeing that Yang Likun had activated the mana restrictions, the black light cloaking Zhou Yuncong gradually faded away as he walked back towards Li Xingfei.
Li Xingfei’s face was pale but she nonetheless maintained her composure. She gazed at Zhou Yuncong and took a deep sigh, “Xu Yunsheng and Ying Luozha are about to take a great blow. I never thought that you’d be this strong, Junior Zhou.”
After a short moment of silence, Zhou Yuncong replied, “I mustn’t battle with you all.”
Li Xingfei nodded. “Indeed, even if the Dharma Hall’s mana restrictions can save our lives, duelling with you might incinerate our own Abhijina and mana. I’m afraid only Senior Yuting can afford to battle you if her mastery is not suppressed.”
Zhou Yuncong looked above Li Xingfei’s head and noticed a ray of golden light floating about with the number ‘4’ written on it.
This ray of golden light was not produced by Li Xingfei herself, being projected by the Dharma Hall’s mana instead. Throughout her battles with the Qiong Qi and Yang Likun, and even when she fell into the deep abyss of lightning and fire, this golden number has never once showed any changes.
Another number was also conjured from the golden light above Zhou Yuncong’s head, ‘1’, while the number previously above Yang Likun’s head was ‘3’. This number represented the number of Golden Rings each person owned and was visible to everyone in the Celestial Small World.
Li Xingfei has already collected four Golden Rings while Yang Likun had three. Zhou Yuncong, having entered the small world only recently, only has one Golden Ring.
He turned back to look at the spot where Yang Likun had vanished and spotted three Golden Rings resting on the ground. The number on his head has also increased to ‘4’. Zhou Yuncong then presented the three Golden Rings to Li Xingfei. In response, she shook her head and gave four Golden Rings to Zhou Yuncong instead.
“My injuries are too severe, and I’ve only mastered the Destructive Powers of Master’s Heavenly Extreme Path Sutra. I’ve yet to cultivate the Creation Powers within, which slows down my recovery process greatly. Even if I consume an elixir, it would only ease the wounds temporarily.”
Zhou Yuncong flipped out his palm and conjured a dark-green stream of water – the Grand Moon Primordial Water, the best cure for a damaged soul of a physical body. However, his Grand Moon Primordial Water was relatively weak, hence achieving its intended effect would require a very long time.
Li Xingfei waved her hand. “There’s no need for this, Junior Zhou. Only the top eight contenders from the second stage can advance to the third stage. Don’t waste your time on me. Not only am I injured physically, my mana has been severely drained. Even if I ingest an elixir, it would be very hard for me to regain my peak condition, and it would be worse if someone else steals my Golden Rings. And even if I do make it to the third stage by luck, I may not be able to defeat the cultivators from other sects. I would just tarnish the grand reputation of our sect in vain, so I would rather leave this spot for you.”
She smiled, “That chubby brat can make such a prompt decision based on the situation, so why can’t I do so too?” With that, she endured the excruciating pain from her wounds to channel her remaining mana and placed a finger on the centre of her eyebrows, committing suicide.
The Dharma Hall’s mana restrictions activated and instantly kept her dear life, delivering her out of the Celestial Small World.
Zhou Yuncong watched Li Xingfei disappear and became slightly somber, not saying a word. He quietly kept her Golden Rings and the golden number above his head shot up to an ‘8’.
Inside the Grand Heavens Pavilion, Xiao Yan and the rest grinned.
Li Xingfei maintained her cool despite landing in a dangerous situation, and slaughtered five Qiong Qis with her amazing strength. She also remained calm after Yang Likun schemed against her and waited patiently for a chance to deliver a devastating strike back. And now, she has resolutely sacrificed herself for another member of her sect. Li Xingfei’s performance made Xiao Yan and the others nod in approval.
Wang Lin rose up and said calmly, “I’ll go check on her. Her injuries must be tended to immediately.”
The Dharma Hall’s mana restrictions only protect one’s life, and retain all the non-fatal injuries.
Lin Feng smiled as he sat quietly on his throne and continued monitoring the images projected from the light illusion.
The battle for the Golden Rings was gradually drawing to a close. As the first eight groups of cultivators in the first stage all entered the Celestial Small World, the Qiong Qis’ days were numbered. Hordes of Qiong Qi were either being slaughtered straightaway, or killed after their Golden Rings were taken. The Qiong Qi population inside the small world was dwindling and a significant portion of Golden Rings has been transferred over to the cultivators participating in the Spiritual Conference.
More and more scuffles were breaking out between the cultivators themselves. On a whole, everyone was relying on their own strength and the environment to battle, with no one collaborating with the Qiong Qi to band against the human cultivators like how Yang Likun did.
All the Immortal Soul powerhouses were observing the progress of the Spiritual Conference closely and slowly noticed a problem. There were over a hundred Qiong Qi inside the Celestial Small World, naturally making the number of Golden Rings above a hundred as well. Only the top eight of the second round can advance to the third round, and they require a collective amount of eighty Golden Rings.
However, if a Qiong Qi is butchered first, it is sent out of the Celestial Small World along with its Golden Rings, hence the total number of Golden Rings actually attainable for the participating cultivators is actually much smaller. And Li Xingfei has just made five Golden Rings worthless.
If the participants do not capture the Qiong Qi alive and instead dispatch them immediately, the Qiong Qi’s Golden Rings will disappear. On the other hand, if other cultivators are ‘killed’, their Golden Rings remain at the same spot. After realizing this, more participants are beginning to target their fellow cultivators.
The golden numbers on each of their heads are like a range of billboards. The larger the number, the easier it garners unwanted attention from greedy competitors.
Chu Yang stood on the hill and looked up to check the digit ‘1’ above his head. After pondering for a bit, he took out a little Storage Bag. This Storage Bag was specially crafted to contain the aura of spiritual items without it leaking out. It was supposed to be the ideal tool to harvest spiritual herbs, but it also achieved the same effect when Chu Yang placed his Golden Ring inside.
The aura which the Golden Rings themselves emanate is actually very weak, and can only be detected by the Dharma Hall’s mana restrictions. Foundation Establishment cultivators already have a difficult time locating them, and now with the added concealment with such a unique Storage Bag, the Golden Rings do not exude a single whiff of spiritual energy. That being said, Chu Yang still had the golden number floating above his head.
Chu Yang scanned his surroundings. There were strange rock formations towering all over the hill, their peculiar forms almost resembling a person’s palm. Their highly conspicuous features make them perfect markings. After carefully probing his surroundings, Chu Yang buried his Storage Bag beneath one of the rocks.
With the Golden Ring removed from Chu Yang’s body, the golden number above his head instantly disappeared. He nodded in satisfaction and leapt down the hill.
He traversed through the mountains and rivers, before he suddenly noticed something, but he did not stop and instead continued advancing forward.
He vaguely detected someone seemingly hiding in ambush, but he did not display any unusual behaviour. Even if that person was waiting to pounce, he would not be targeting Chu Yang. After all, there was no golden number above his head which meant that he did not have any Golden Rings on him, and neither did he have any sworn enemies amongst the cultivators attending this Spiritual Conference. Hence, the person lying in wait would never waste such a painstakingly tedious ambush plan on him.
And sure enough, Chu Yang travelled forward without any interruption. The ambusher lurking by the side did not move a muscle, completely ignoring Chu Yang.
However, Chu Yang was no pushover himself. After walking for a certain distance, he took a deep breath as an image wavered gently within the Aurous Core inside his body and a faint glow surged forth from. This glow illuminated Chu Yang’s body from the inside out and his bodily aura instantly evolved. The next moment, he was nowhere to be seen.
Chu Yang did not actually disappear, neither was he crouching somewhere in hiding. He was still standing at his original position, as carefree as ever, yet he made others neglect his presence subconsciously, as if no one was even standing there.
This was because Chu Yang has fused himself almost seamlessly with the space of the outside world. When others look in his direction, he looks no different from the scenery and foliage in the background, being completely one with the surroundings and hence producing the illusion of him vanishing.
Naturally, such a spell cannot deceive cultivators with higher mastery levels, yet most Foundation Establishment cultivators could not detect his presence. Even some Aurous Core cultivators may not necessarily be able to do so either. Once Chu Yang is no longer under the Dharma Hall’s mana restrictions, all Aurous Core cultivators would not even notice him.
Chu Yang leisurely strolled back to the spot where the person was lying in ambush, and simply waited there without a care.
Not long after, the ambush target delivered themselves to his front door. There were two dragon shadows which appeared as a young man and a young lady. They were Shi Shaogan and Shi Jingyun of the Great Qin Empire. Radiant golden numbers flickered above their heads, ‘5’ and ‘4’ respectively, flaunting their harvested rewards.
But shortly after they entered the area, rays after rays of light fired into the air and created a massive spell formation, trapping the duo inside. Inside the formation was a figure clad in white with a symbol of a cloud sewn onto his robes, and boasting an elegant, handsome face. Despite being a man, his eyes slanted upwards at the ends like a phoenix.
Upon seeing him, Shi Shaogan and Shi Jingyun frowned, recognizing him as the young cultivator who hailed from the Great Void Sect like Chen Xingyu. His name was Fan Xuefeng, an extremely outstanding cultivator who was among the first group of people to enter the Celestial Small World along with Xu Yunsheng and Ying Luozha. The golden number above his head was a resounding ‘7’, which solidified his leading position in the second stage, having performed exceptionally well.
At the moment, he was in the middle of a flag formation, where seven small flags of different colours fluttering valiantly in the wind, holding up the formidable spell.
The Spiritual Conference prohibits the use of magic items and only allows most participants to rely on their own Abhijina and mana, with the exceptions of sword cultivators and spell formation cultivators.
Sword cultivators invest their entire mastery level into the swords they yield, which naturally makes it impossible for their swords to be banned. On the other hand, spell formation cultivators also require their magic items, hence the Spiritual Conference provides this exception. For the sake of fairness, other cultivators going up against these two groups are also allowed to deploy their own magic items, but the power of their items would be restricted solely to the Foundation Establishment Stage and cannot achieve the Aurous Core Stage.
Fan Xuefeng unleashed his spell formation. Rainbow-coloured mist and clouds swirled around Shi Shaogan and Shi Jingyun, trapping them inside. Despite being ambushed and their opponent using his spell formation to clinch a geographical advantage over them, Shi Shaogan and Shao Jingyun were prized talents painstakingly nurtured by the Great Qin Empire, and were equally extraordinary. Shi Shaogan clasped his hands together and summoned a spell. Two light dragons, one red and one yellow, encircled him. These were the Imperial Scripts of the Crimson and Yellow Dragons respectively.
Compared to the Spiritual Conference of Huanghai, Shi Shaogan’s strength has increased tremendously, and not just because he has formed his Aurous Core. With a clap of his hands, another green light dragon bounded into the air. It was the Abhijina manifestation of the Imperial Script of the Green Dragon.
“There’s no need for this, Cousin. Since you’re injured, summoning the crimson and yellow dragons would already be adequate.” As Shi Jingyun said this, the area surrounding her also began to glow, having conjured the three light dragons of green, black, and white.
Hiding in a dark corner, Chu Yang’s eyes gleamed faintly. “If I recall correctly, her true mastery level is only at the Advanced Foundation Establishment Stage. How could she have mastered three of the five scripts inside the Secret Manual of the Five Imperial True Dragons?”