Book 14, Return to the Grand Xia, Chapter 21 – The Cauldron of Divine Venomflame of the Nine Heavens
Ji Ning, protected by the Nightriver, was being attacked from every corner. But suddenly, the ‘Threetailed Thundergod’ construct turned tail and flew away.
“You want to go?” Ning’s eyes blazed with torch-light. He immediately executed the [Obscuring Wind of the Nine Heavens] divine ability. Although he had acquired it just recently, it was a technique-focused divine ability. In addition, Ning had already thoroughly mastered the Windwing Evasion, and thus he was quick to master part of the mysteries of this [Obscuring Wind of the Nine Heavens] technique. It could be said that he had gained a basic level of skill in it.
When this divine ability was executed, a wild wind began to howl around Ning as he chased after the construct.
“Construct, you want to leave?” The six Immortal swords in Ning’s hands repeatedly hacked down towards the fleeing construct.
One ray of sword-light after another came crashing down upon the body of the construct.
The construct was slammed into the ground, and a spiderweb of cracks appeared in the ground beneath it.
“Earthnine, you useless pieces of crap, hurry up and help me stop Ji Ning. If you don’t stop him, I won’t be able to leave. How the hell am I supposed to inform Master?” Big Han sent a frantic mental message while muttering to himself, “This Ji Ning is way too fast. I was quite some distance away from him, but he was able to catch up in a flash.”
Squad Earthnine was also shocked by Ning’s speed. Still, they immediately moved to help. The enormous body of the Ba-Serpent came slithering over, coiling around Ning as multiple magic treasures began to assault him as well. As it did, the Ba-Serpent roared back, “You’re the useless piece of crap! Do you think it’s easy to deal with this Ji Ning? It’s not that we are weak, it’s that he’s too much of a monster. I have no idea what sort of treasure is generating that golden light, but no matter how we attack him, we aren’t able to do anything to him.”
Big Han seized this moment to hurry and flee. In truth, he knew that squad Earthnine wasn’t to blame; he had used his construct to launch attacks earlier, and he knew that Ji Ning truly was a monster.
Ning was like a rock, a hard bone that wouldn’t break or crack. What was one supposed to do to him?
After fleeing far away, Big Han was able to escape the field of battle, thanks to the obscuring fog in the area.
“Milord.” The leader of the Eastwoods sect came to greet him.
“I’m going to go see the general. You watch here. Don’t let Ji Ning escape,” Big Han instructed.
“Alright,” the Eastwoods sect leader said respectfully.
Big Han quickly departed, and the Eastwoods sect leader watched as Big Han disappeared into the distance. Only after he was gone did the sect leader mumble to himself, “So what if I don’t let him leave? None of you were able to do anything to him when attacking him.” He then lifted his head to once more stare at the besieged, three-headed, six-armed Ning. He couldn’t help but feel admiration for him.
This was a monster who had shocked the world more than thirty years ago, seizing the championship of the Conclave of Immortal Destiny. And now…he was truly formidable. Even squad Earthnine of Bloodcloud Hall was unable to harm him in the slightest.
The Eastwoods mountain range. The forbidden area.
Within a dark palace.
The silver-armored youth was seated in the host’s position, sampling fine wine. Before him was seated a red-robed elder.
“I’m almost out of patience. Qu Huan, you truly have disappointed me greatly,” the silver-armored youth said, a beastskull goblet of wine in hand. He stared at the wind as he said these words calmly.
“General, don’t be impatient. Don’t be impatient,” the red-robed elder said hurriedly with an ingratiating smile.
“I’m not impatient, but the Master is!” The silver-armored youth said coldly, then raised his head to glance sideways at the red-robed elder. “You should know very well how important your mission is. You’ve spent more than ten years on it…how much longer before you complete it?”
The red-robed elder said hurriedly, “We’re already doing everything we can. If you send some more people to help us out, General, we might be able to go a bit faster.”
“More people?” The silver-armored youth shook his head. “Everyone is tight on personnel right now. The other generals all have their own assignments to carry out as well; where am I supposed to go find more people? The Master has already begun to push me. I’ll give you three more years. If you aren’t able to finish within three years…I won’t kill you myself, but you need to make your preparations for reincarnation.”
The red-robed elder was filled with worry. He hurriedly said, “It’s not enough. How can three years be enough? Given the number of people we have…we will need at least five years.”
“You must finish within three years. If you do not…” The silver-armored youth waved his hand. “Hurry up and beat it.”
“Yes.” The red-robed elder gritted his teeth. “Your subordinate shall definitely do everything possible to finish within three years.” He then left obediently.
The palace hall once more turned quiet.
The silver-armored youth drank some more wine, then shook his head helplessly. “Ever since I came to this major world of the Grand Xia, I’ve been living the life of a mouse. I’m always hiding. How irritating! I wonder when the battle will come. After taking over this major world, I’ll be able to live a carefree life.”
“Master, Master.” A voice shouted from outside.
The silver-armored youth frowned, then barked, “Have you no sense of propriety? Stop screaming and kicking up a fuss.”
“Master.” Big Han came in, then hurriedly smiled, “Sorry, I was panicking.”
“What is it?” The silver-armored youth said.
“I went along with the Eastwoods sect leader to help out, and we used the protective formations the Eastwoods Sect has. I even personally intervened, but we weren’t able to do anything to that Ji Ning,” Big Han said hurriedly. “Squad Earthnine have no other options left. They are asking for your help, Master. If you are helpless as well, then they’ll prepare for their ‘final option’.”
“Final option?” The silver-armored youth snickered, “Those useless pieces of crap from Bloodcloud Hall. Whenever they fail in their assassination attempt, they’ll use that so-called ‘final option’.”
“But that option has killed quite a few Celestial Immortals,” Big Han couldn’t help but say.
“Those Celestial Immortals died due to stupidity!” The silver-armored youth shook his head. “No matter what…squad Earthnine of Bloodcloud Hall has always been on quite good terms with me. I’ll give them a hand. Go and summon nine of my Fiendguards and prepare to use the Divine Venomflame of the Nine Heavens Cauldron. If they can kill Ji Ning, that will naturally be a joyous affair, but if even this technique fails to kill him…then have squad Earthnine come up with another method. If they want to use their so-called ‘final option’, that’s up to them.”
“Alright,” Big Han said in a low voice, “But Master, aren’t you going to fight?”
“Me? Fight? Do you think it was easy for me to make it past all the tribulations and calamities, eventually becoming a Celestial Immortal? If a Celestial Immortal wants to stay alive for a long period of time, he needs to have a bit of judgment. He needs to clearly understand when to act and when not to act.” The silver-armored youth snickered, “This Ji Ning might have a True Immortal or Empyrean God behind him, or perhaps even a Daofather! If I were to personally intervene, what if the power behind Ji Ning were to come out and instantly crushing me to death. Wouldn’t that be a shame?”
“Now, of course, if I was given a good enough offer, I might be willing to risk it…but this mission only involves three piddling top-grade Immortal-ranked magic treasures. The main Bloodcloud Hall office is keeping one of them, while squad Earthnine is taking part as well. How much can there be for me? They want me to take on such risks for just a tiny reward?”
The silver-armored youth shook his head disdainfully. “Big Han, you and the rest of the old brothers who accompanied me to the world of the Grand Xia for the purpose of enjoying ourselves. Naturally, when we need to fight, we shall…but we need to always consider whether it is worth it or not. As for this assassination mission of Bloodcloud Hall? Its success, its failure…what the hell does it have to do with us?”
“Right, right, right.” Big Han hurriedly said, “Master, you are wise.”
“The Divine Venomflame of the Nine Heavens Cauldron is the most powerful killing formation which has been set down here at the Eastwoods mountain range. Even amongst Celestial Immortals, only extremely powerful ones can withstand it. The vast majority will be annihilated in one blow,” the silver-armored youth said. “I’m giving them face by having nine of my Fiendguards activate this killing formation. Alright, hurry up and go.”
“Yes, yes, yes.” Big Han hurriedly left.
The silver-armored youth immediately stood up and walked outside of the palace hall. Soon, Big Han came back leading nine plainly dressed bronze-armored Loose Immortals and Earth Immortals.
“General,” the nine Fiendguards said respectfully.
“Big Han has told you everything, yes? Hurry up and go control the formation to kill Ji Ning,” the silver-armored youth instructed.
“Yes, General.” The nine Fiendguards assented respectfully, then quickly departed.
“Come, let’s go take a look as well. I want to see if this peerless genius of the Grand Xia world is able to survive within this grand formation of mine, or if he will be burnt to ash.” The silver-armored youth leisurely walked out.
There were three figures atop a mountain peak. They were the silver-armored youth, big Han, and a black-robed youngster.
“Disciple, you came with me, your master, to the world of the Grand Xia,” the silver-armored youth said with a laugh. “Today, Master is going to give you the chance to see…the person known as the number one peerless genius of the world of the Grand Xia. He’s trained for less than a century, roughly the same as you, but he is far more famous than you.”
The black-haired youngster said confidently, “How strong can he be?”
“You’ll know soon enough,” the silver-armored youth said.
A figure suddenly flew over. It was the Eastwoods sect leader. He said respectfully, “I greet you, General.”
“Disperse the fog,” the silver-armored youth said with a laugh. “Let my disciple have a chance to see how powerful this Ji Ning is.”
“Yes.” The sect leader immediately obeyed the order. Instantly, the distant fog began to dissipate, allowing everything to become clearly visible. Even here, at the distant mountain peak, one could see an enormous three-headed, six-armed giant battling in the distance against the even more massive Ba-Serpent, as well as the surging waters of the Nightriver.
The silver-armored youth laughed. “Disciple, what do you think?”
The black-robed youngster stared intently into the distance. He could sense the terrifying power of the Ba-Serpent, capable of shaking the world itself, as well as the power of those many Immortal-ranked magic treasures. However…the three-headed, six-armed giant youth was able to block all of these attacks.
“So powerful.” The black-robed youngster was somewhat stunned. “He…can it be that he is already a Celestial Immortal?”
“Although he is not a Celestial Immortal, he has a Celestial Immortal’s power,” the silver-armored youth said with a sigh. “At the Wanxiang level or the Primal level, fighting someone of a higher level is fairly common…but the difference between a Void-level Earth Immortal and a Celestial Immortal is absolutely enormous. For him to still be able to fight those at a higher level, despite being an Earth Immortal…is something that is truly rare. More importantly, this Ji Ning has trained for less than a century. Disciple…do you see the difference, now?”
The black-robed youngster gnawed at his lips as he watched.
Right at this moment…
Rumble…suddenly, a mountain peak began to levitate into the skies at the southeastern horizons.
Rumble…suddenly, a second mountain peak began to levitate into the skies of the northwestern horizons.
One mountain after another began to levitate into the air. Fortunately, thanks to the grand formation protecting the entire Eastwoods mountain range, those who were outside the mountain range were completely unable to see this. They had no idea how vicious the battle within the mountains had grown.
Soon, a total of nine mountain peaks were hovering in the air, spread out in every direction. Each mountain peak was covered with swirling, fiery red runes, causing the aura of power emanating from the mountains to slowly grow more and more powerful.
This invisible aura quickly encompassed nearly the entire Eastwoods mountain range.
This was because this was the most powerful killing formation available to the Eastwoods Sect, capable of attacking any place within the mountain ranges. Even this mountain peak, where the black-robed youngster and the silver-armored youth were located, could be assaulted.
“Master, this killing formation…” The black-robed youngster’s face changed as he sensed the threat from this formation. “This formation is going to be used against Ji Ning?”
The aura from the formation alone was enough to cause the black-robed youngster to feel fear in his heart.
He knew exactly how powerful this killing formation was. Just a tiny portion of it was enough to annihilate him.
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