Chapter 896: A ‘Warm Welcome’ For Lin Feng
Translator: Sparrow Translations Editor: Sparrow Translations
Lin Feng had no intention to be high profile but did not attempt to mask his own aura as well. He used his consciousness to sweep the area as he proceeded forward to search for the Golden Cicada Master.
The moment he stepped into the territory of the Xiaocizhi Mountain, the white and red mountain trembled and a giant light illusion shimmered in the upper parts of the mountain.
That illusion was shaped like an ape with a white-colored head and red-colored limbs. The combination of colors was similar to that of the Xiaocizhi Mountain itself, and the four limbs in contact with the ground resembled raging flames.
It was colossal, so big that it seemed like it bore the weight of the heavens upon its shoulders. It had red eyes that flickered with green light as they trained themselves on Lin Feng.
Lin Feng matched his gaze and muttered, “The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage, indeed. Judging by the ripples of his mana, he should have already begun experiencing the tribulations – but I can’t tell whether he has completed the Alpha Tribulations.”
Legend had it that when the Crimson Gorilla Apes showed themselves, the world would descend into war. At this moment, Lin Feng could already feel that instigating aura permeating the air that provoked all the living souls in the world to fight against each other.
This concept of power was similar to that of the Asura War-Blade; there was a tiny difference: The Asura War-Blade seemed to incite cruel murder while the other was purely belligerent.
However, the instigating aura exhibited by the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage was a lot more dense and powerful compared to the Asura War-Blade, and could not be compared on the same level.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage stared at Lin Feng and said, “Are you the leader of the Celestial Sect of Wonders from the Divine Lands, Lin Feng? Are you here for the Golden Cicada Master?”
Lin Feng smiled plainly and replied, “Since you already know who I am and why I am here, do you have any information you can provide for me?”
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s mouth separated as he revealed rows of shiny white teeth. Even though it was just a light illusion, there seemed to be heatwaves emanating from that all-swallowing gaping mouth that scorched the immediate vicinity around the Xiaocizhi Mountain.
“Even though you haven’t participated in the War of the Two Worlds before, you are ultimately still human. The Crimson Gorilla Apes have never been on good terms with the humans.”
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage passed a voice-projected message, “However, the humans we hate the most are the cultivators from the Mount Shu Sword Sect. Your destruction of the Saintly Celestial Sword and the flattening of Mount Shu, while it stemmed from personal feuds, is still a piece of good news for us and makes us feel good.”
“The Golden Cicada Master is adept at covering his tracks. Even with the rough location that you have provided, it may still be challenging to find him. I also intend to draw the flesh and blood of this ‘old friend’ to feed my juniors.”
Lin Feng answered coolly, “My eradication of the Saintly Celestial Sword was purely to settle the feud between myself and the Mount Shu Sword Sect, nothing else. If you have already found the Golden Cicada Master and you have news for me, I may be able to save some time. If you haven’t or you can’t provide me with anything, then all I have to do is spend a little more time and effort.”
“The Golden Cicada Master abducted one of my grand-disciples when I was shutting myself in. The sole purpose of my expedition into the Barren Expanses is to claim him back and pay back this debt.”
The main benefit of the flesh and blood of the Golden Cicada Master was to help powerful demons resist the Tribulations and did not have the same effects. However, even though Lin Feng was not interested in that, it did not naturally mean that he was about to hand him over to the demons to make them stronger.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage was aware of this as well. In the end, the outcome would be determined by their own intelligence and capabilities. Furthermore, the Golden Cicada Master was not a clay doll and dealing with him was extremely difficult to accomplish.
“The Six-Horned Divine Monkeys and the Crimson Gorilla Apes branched from the same lineage. Your disciple executed some of the disciples of the Six-Horned Grand Sage, yet I cannot be bothered to put my life on the line to fight you for revenge. However, I need to provide the Heavenly Grandmaster Grand Sage with an explanation,” the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage continued, “Your reputation precedes you, and I have heard that you are the number one figure in the recent rise of powerful cultivators in the Divine Lands. Even though I am nothing much, I wish to challenge you to a duel.”
“The Azure Sky Dragon King will be here shortly. If you emerge victorious against me, I will stop him for you to aid you in your efforts to find the Golden Cicada Master. When you do find him, you will have full priority in whatever you need to do. However, if you lose, once you find the Golden Cicada Master, you will take back your grand-disciple but you will have to hand the Golden Cicada Master over to me.”
The Six-Horned Divine Monkeys were very close to the Heavenly Demon Apes, but were not known to have much dealings with the Crimson Gorilla Ape Demons. The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage was not about to battle Lin Feng to the death over the death of one junior from the Six-Horned Divine Monkeys tribe.
The outcome of the battle aside, if he requested for Lin Feng to hand over Shi Tianhao, it would irrevocably lead to a battle to the very end.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage made it clear that even if he won, he would not make an attempt on Lin Feng’s life. To him, the flesh and blood of the Golden Cicada Master was far more valuable and important.
Lin Feng’s epic reputation in the Divine Lands did not come about by talk or conversation; he built every single block of it with his fists. Even though he did not usually venture into the Barren Expanses, his notoriety was equally well-known within the Barren Expanses.
No matter what, the conflict between the demon world and the human world had been raging for so many years. Even if some demons had never seen Lin Feng before and knew nothing of his real power, they were still roughly aware of the power of other entities like the Mount Shu Sword Sect, the Saintly Celestial Sword, the Imperial Palace, the Immortal Dragon City and the Great Void Holy Pavilion.
If the current leader of the Ape Demons – the Heavenly Grandmaster Grand Sage – was here, and their location of battle was at the main peak of the Lingyuan Mountains, which was also their ancestral ground, the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage would perhaps have spoken in another manner. However, the Heavenly Grandmaster Grand Sage was on a crusade against the Great Void Sect’s Mount Taihua and was still absent. The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage was all by himself and was not about to risk his life against Lin Feng.
The Azure Sky Dragon King was the tribe leader of the Azure Dragons who belonged to the Immemorial Celestial Dragons that roosted within the Black Sea. The Azure Dragons were closely related to the Thunder Dragons, and the Azure Sky Dragon King immediately hurried forth once he received news about Lin Feng’s arrival within the Barren Expanses.
Lin Feng could gauge the rough location of the Golden Cicada Master with the golden bowl; the Golden Cicada Master himself was also able to estimate Lin Feng’s location as well. If not, because he kept running and had to watch his back, yet he had to deal with the ambushes and poaching from people like the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage at the same time, he would have been trapped a long time ago.
To the best of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s knowledge, the Azure Sky Dragon King was just a scout and the front-liner – there were more powerful dragons following behind.
Quite a handful of great demons were giving Lin Feng a ‘warm welcome’ upon discovering his arrival in the Barren Expanses.
Once he finished his speech, the giant ape illusion that enveloped the entire Xiaocizhi Mountain howled into the air and the heavens split apart in an instant.
For people like him and Lin Feng, spatial distance was no longer important. Their abhijnas could extend across thousands of miles at whim, and they could possibly fill up the entire galaxy with just a thought.
The Immortal Dragon City seemed like a long city wall that was only a million miles long that spanned across the void. However, if there was the will to do so, its length could extend beyond space and even time without end.
In their eyes, the concept of height and length had lost its meaning most of the time.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s howl separated the heavens and revealed the darkness of the void. The four claws of the giant illusion stepped on invisible steps as he climbed upwards. Fire blazed below his limbs and left fiery footprints that materialized in the void without dissipating at all.
Lin Feng watched that seemingly inexistent staircase appeared to rise to new heights. It felt as if the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage climbed ever so high, as if he was above the universe itself and observing the world below.
“Is he trying to see who can climb higher?” Lin Feng continued to watch as he raised an eyebrow.
To many, this was a competition that appeared to mock himself, and that others would laugh at him just because he was a primate.
However, humans mocked them because humans saw themselves as superior to monkeys. The story of the “Monkey who wore a crown and pretended to be a human” came from this.
For a great demon like the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage, it was hard to say who was the superior race, and thus it was hardly inappropriate for him to engage in such a competition.
On the other hand, he was extremely serious about dueling Lin Feng and wanted to use the mantra he was most adept in to increase his winning chances.
Lin Feng was naturally aware of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s train of thought and was not about to mock him. However, this did not mean he was going to follow the rules set by the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage in this competition.
He had no intention of capturing the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage and torturing the information out of him. That was too time-consuming, and the Golden Cicada Master would just be snickering at the side.
Lin Feng was not about to keep a low profile in his venture into Barren Expanses and return to the Divine Lands without stirring up a scene. However, he had to find Zhou Yuncong before anything else; he could even let himself go and journey through the world of demons.
Even though he knew Zhou Yuncong was alive and well, the abduction by the Golden Cicada Master of an aurous core stage cultivator could not possibly bode well. The Golden Cicada Master wanted to cause trouble for him – but how could Lin Feng let him get his wish?
He glanced at the invisible staircase beneath the feet of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage and the fiery footprints again and immediately understood what was going on.
The duel was inclined towards a competition of who was better at controlling space and time and the changes in abhijna as well as a competition to see who could climb higher. Furthermore, if Lin Feng started moving now, the fiery footprints that condensed in the void below the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage would hinder Lin Feng’s progress.
Rising through the sky and stepping through the void seemed easy enough – even aurous core stage cultivators and demonic commander stage demons could do it. However, their movement across the void could not be compared with the movement of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage on the same level.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage continued upwards, and every step seemed to transcend space and time. The sophistication of it all made it feel like he was roaming the universe above the heavens, and treading along the long river of time.
Even Immortal Soul Stage Third Level cultivators and Undying Demon Soul Third Level demons were unable to achieve this. They would not even be able to make the first step, and could only glare as their efforts proved futile, let alone engage in a competition with the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage.
The scars of the fiery footprints that were condensed in the void for a prolonged period of time embodied the force of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s feet. They were like nocked arrows, but if the true power of any footprint was released, heaven and earth would crumble under its sheer strength.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage wanted to have a friendly competition and did not want to fight for real. However, to Lin Feng, friendly competition and fighting for real were not so different.
He stood at the same position calmly without moving a single inch, but reached out with his right hand and grabbed at the invisible staircase beneath the feet of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage.
In the next instant, the space all around began to twist out of proportion and a formless hand seemed to lock itself upon the staircase beneath the feet of the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage – it was the mantra derived from Lin Feng’s Fences of the Heavens technique, the Heaven Arrest.
Once his grip on the staircase was secure, Lin Feng’s eyes grew ever so tranquil, much like the never-ending flowing river of time.
However, the tides of time seemed to grow slower and slower, and appeared as if time itself was going to freeze in place.
The formless hand fixated upon the invisible staircase suddenly released a layer of hazy and chaotic radiance that extended outwards with unstoppable speed. Everything else became hazy and blurry, as if the world was but gray and white.
The Heaven Extreme Universal Light!
When Lin Feng reached the Immortal Soul Stage Second Level, his original body was finally able to unleash the power of this mantra that embodied the great and eternal principles of the transformation of time.
The staircase beneath the Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage began to shake and tremble once it was fixed in place by the Heaven Arrest supported by the Heaven Extreme Universal Light and it even appeared as if it was about to dissipate into real nothingness.
The Crimson Gorilla Grand Sage’s blood-red eyes flooded with green light as the light illusion of the giant gorilla that was climbing above heavens suddenly started to materialize – he had revealed his true form!