Book 6, Breaking Through the Cocoon, Becoming a Butterfly, Chapter 30, Whitewater Hound Transforms
One strongman after another continued to condense from within the gray, misty void. These strongmen were all incomparably savage and fearless. Wielding their warhammers, spears, axes, and other weapons, they charged forth, bellowing that ancient Fiengod word for ‘kill’.
The rain fell down like sheets of curtains. One layer of watery walls swirled through these strongmen. The ‘rainwater’ of the Rainwater Sword Domain was no longer capable of killing these strongmen. All Ji Ning could do with it was to use the rainwater to slow them down as much as possible.
“Slash!” “Chop!” “Pierce!” Nine sword flashes danced in the skies. Some strongmen died after their heads were pierced through. Others died through bisection. Still others died through decapitation…
“Die, all of you.” Ning wielded two swords in his hands, executing his divine ability, ‘Windwing Evasion’, while on his back, a pair of wings created from the Crimsonbright divine power had manifested. This was the true face of the Windwing Evasion! Originally, the Yuchi clan had wanted to hide the fact that their clan had a divine ability, and so they had ordered their descendants to always use wing-type magic treasures when executing the technique.
How could a true divine ability require the supporting help of a magic treasure?
“Swoosh!” Ning moved as fast a ghost, curving through the masses in a solitary line, and wherever he passed, the two swords in his hands accompanied him, transforming into two arcing sword flashes.
Slash! Two rows of strongmen were instantly chopped into two pieces. They died, and then dissipated into mist once more. “Kill.” Ning swept out with his swords, and wherever he struck, strongmen fell and perished.
“Difficult. Starting to grow difficult.” A hint of worry had appeared on Ji Ning’s face. “The Rainwater Sword Domain and the Waterflame Lotuses are now unable to kill them. I have to rely on the nine swords that I am controlling through my divine will, and every single sword is only able to kill one of them at once.”
At the very beginning, those nine swords controlled through divine sense were able to sweep through many strongmen at once. But now, clearly, every single sword had to focus on a single strongman. Only the two swords he personally wielded were capable of killing a row of enemies at once!
Strongmen continued to die, but the gray, misty void continued to constantly generated even more strongmen. The newly born strongmen had even more savage auras, and wielded even greater might.
Chop! Chop! Chop! The nine flying swords left behind wounds on the bellowing strongmen, but they continued to charge towards Ning.
“It’s finally come to this. This moment has finally come. These newly born strongmen can no longer be killed by the swords controlled through divine will alone.” Ning gritted his teeth, transforming himself into a streak of light repeatedly, and his the swords in his hands howled out, chopping through swathes of strongmen. Only the sharp swords he personally wielded were able to kill these strongmen now.
After all, the power of the swords he controlled through divine will was merely at the early Zifu stage. But Ning’s physical strength as a Fiendgod refiner was at the late Zifu level…he was two levels higher than he should have been at, thanks to the [Crimsonbright Diagram of the Nine Heavens], and so it was only natural that the two sharp swords he personally wielded would be more powerful.
“Kill.” Ning continued to kill with all his strength…and the giant yellow bear, outside of the Divine Abilities Hall, could see exactly what was going on within.
“These are his last death-struggles.” The giant yellow bear sighed. “Ji Ning is about to admit defeat.” “Admit defeat?” The old black bull asked. “Will he be able to receive the third divine ability?”
The giant yellow bear shook his head. “He’s still a bit off. His current Rainwater Sword Domain and his divine will are now completely useless. He can only rely on the two swords in his hands to kill. His sword technique is exceptional, especially given the fact that his dual swords are able to reinforce each other…and thus, he will be able to hold on for a bit longer. However, it will be quite difficult and hard to say if he will successfully acquire the third divine ability.”
“Alas.” The old black bull was resigned as well. “Soon. He will come out soon.” The giant yellow bear shook his head. “What a pity. He truly did have a chance at acquiring Master’s divine ability.”
Oxhorn Mountain. Halfway up the mountain.
Ji Ninefire could sense everything which was going on within the grand formation. He was currently focused on two things; the first was Ji Yichuan’s sneak attacks on the forces of Snowdragon Mountain, and the other was the Whitewater Hound’s breakthrough.
“Yichuan truly is wise.” Ninefire’s eyes held amusement within them, but there was a hint of grief hidden within the laughter. “His natural talent is far greater than Truekeep’s. In the past, when he went to roam the Darknorth Seas, he was already at the middle Zifu stage. If he hadn’t suffered that disaster on the way back, he probably would be close to the peak Zifu stage by now.”
If it hadn’t been for a monster like Ji Ning appearing, Yichuan would have definitely been acknowledged as the number one genius of the Ji clan.
“This battle will be the final battle of Yichuan’s life.” Ninefire watched, watched Yichuan’s final, most glorious moment. But suddenly…
A powerful, mysterious aura appeared nearby him, but soon, that aura then dissipated. “The Whitewater Hound!” A look of surprised joy appeared in Ninefire’s eyes. “He made a breakthrough? He made it?”
The Whitewater Hound was a Godbeast that was legendary for its intelligence. Yichuan had mentioned before to Ninefire that this brother of his, the Whitewater Hound, was an extremely high level of comprehension, and had surpassed the Zifu level in that regard long ago. Only, as a Godbeast, the amount of energy that he needed to accumulate to break through was significant. Thus, Ninefire had given the jade bottle to the Whitewater Hound on a gamble. Who would’ve thought that he’d truly succeed?
“Coming.” Ninefire turned his head to look. A white-robed man walked over. This man had a head of long, snowy white hair that fell to his waist. His face was strikingly similar to Yichuan’s, but his eyes held a hint of kindness within them…if Yichuan was described as a glacier that had been existing for ten thousand years, then this man was like the spring wind that brought a sense of warmth.
“Whitewater Hound?” Ninefire looked at the white-robed man, calling out in surprise. Naturally, he knew that this man in front of him was the human transformation of the Godbeast ‘Whitewater Hound’. Only, he was surprised at the Whitewater Hound’s appearance. It must be understood that one’s appearance stemmed from one’s heart; the appearance which some Diremonsters took on after transforming wasn’t based purely on their own choice. Their appearance after transforming wasn’t up to their control.
Everything was determined by their heart! Some monsters, in human form, would appear cold and sinister. Some would appear tyrannous and overbearing. Others would look ugly and crooked, while still others would be devilish and enchanting…everything was determined by their hearts.
“His appearance is striking similar to Yichuan’s; those who didn’t know him might take him to be Yichuan’s sibling. From this, one can tell how important Yichuan is to him.” Ninefire murmured to himself. “In addition, there isn’t a hint of the foul, evil aura which usually emanates from foreheads of monsters. The opposite; he gives off a calm aura…he makes others feel as though they were facing the moist spring wind. It seems the Dao-heart of this Whitewater Hound is extraordinary.
This type of Godbeast, the Whitewater Hound, was legendary for its wisdom, and was very kind-hearted. According to legend, they had a hint of the bloodline of the primordial Fiendgod, ‘Whitemarsh’.
Godbeasts generally had their own unique innate divine abilities. For example, the Azure Skysnake was capable of the Void Blink technique. As for the Whitewater Hound…although it didn’t have any special innate abilities, its innate characteristics was its wisdom and kindness.
“Patriarch.” The Whitewater Hound looked at Ninefire. “Whitewater Hound.” Ninefire said. “Everyone says that Whitewater Hounds are incomparably wise. Our Ji clan currently faces a great disaster; do you have anything you can do?”
Although this type of Godbeast, Whitewater Hounds, were extremely common, very few were able to break through to the Zifu level. This was the first which Ninefire had ever seen.
“Upon being locked within this grand sealing formation, what could I possibly do?” The Whitewater Hound gently shook his head. “The only choice is to fight!”
Ninefire then asked, “What are you skilled in?” “I like to analyze formations.” The Whitewater Hound said softly. “Elder Brother Yichuan, in the past, helped me collect some books on formations. Elder Sister Snow also gifted me with some books on formations. I normally focus on analyzing formations, and have gained significant insights into them.”
Ninefire was a bit disappointed. Formation? The Ji clan had established the Netherwyrm Heavenlock Formation; even if the Whitewater Hound was skilled in formations, what use would it be?
“I also have some unranked formation flags which I used in the past when developing formations.” The Whitewater Hound said. “By using these formation flags and setting them up around Snowdragon Mountain’s forces, I should be able to make the local elemental pulses and ley lines more complicated, making it harder for Nong Zidao to analyze and break through them.”
“What!” Ninefire was shocked. “You…you are able to…” Ninefire was completely stunned. An amateur might not understand what the Whitewater Hound’s words meant, but Ninefire was a formations expert as well. It must be understood that different formations had different ways of activating the energy of the world; there were different levels and methods. For example, although the Netherwyrm Heavenlock Formation and the bewildering black fog illusion formation were able to link together, when it came to time spent analyzing, the black bewildering fog formation wasn’t able to do anything to Nong Zidao.
The two formations had different mechanisms for using the power of the world. Naturally, they wouldn’t be able to impact each other. To impact each other…that meant one formation had to be able to guide the natural energy of the world in a way which was very similar to the nether fog’s, to the point of becoming one. The difficulty of doing this was no less than breaking the nether fog formation itself!
“You?” Ninefire stared at the Whitewater Hound, stunned, then said with absolute excitement, “If you are able to do this, that will make the nether fog even more difficult to break. Perhaps we’ll be able to delay for two days.”
The Whitewater Hound’s gaze turned distant. “Given the speed by which Nong Zidao defeated the nether energy surrounding the Dragonclaw Formation…even with my influence, we will be lucky if we are able to delay by two days.”
“I have some additional formation flags here. Would you need them?” Ninefire hurriedly said. “I’m only using them to affect the local elemental energy ley lines, not to engage in battle. These unranked formation flags are sufficient.” The Whitewater Hound said. “In addition, I’ve spent a long period of time practicing with these unranked formation flags. I am very familiar with them.”
“Fine. Hurry and go.” Ninefire said excitedly. The Whitewater Hound, in the shape of a man, walked towards a corridor that had appeared within the nether fog, and then his body turned into a mist which reformed into the Godbeast, Whitewater Hound. Generally speaking, monsters were more accustomed to their own, original form.
“Formidable, formidable.” Excitement was in Ninefire’s eyes. “Everyone says that Whitewater Hounds are Godbeasts legendary for their fame. Who would have imagined that they could reach such heights in analyzing formations as well…
“Little White!” Yichuan was holding a Dao-seal in his hand, but he stared, astonished, as a snowy white hound appeared by his side. This snowy white hound quickly transformed into a white-robed, white-haired man.
“You broke through?” Yichuan was both surprised and delighted. He stared at the man who appeared so similar to him, and yet who had a softer, gentler aura. Yichuan felt a sense of closeness from deep in his heart…because this was his brother, his lifelong friend.
The Whitewater Hound looked at Yichuan, a hint of moisture in his eyes. “This will be the last battle that I shall undergo with you, Elder Brother. In this battle, we shall fight side by side.”
“Alright.” Yichuan slung his arm around the Whitewater Hound’s shoulders, unable to keep the tears from coming out of his eyes as well. “Let’s fight, shoulder to shoulder.”
The Whitewater Hound laughed. To battle to the death alongside his elder brother, one last time…it was enough.
Within the underwater estate’s Divine Abilities Hall. Within that gray, blurry void.
Blood spray outwards. In this place, only Ji Ning would shed blood; these strongmen, upon being killed, would transform into mist. “Argh.” Ning clenched his two swords, continuing to fight with all his strength. They blocked a warhammer blow from a strongman, and then struck forward, piercing through the fat strongman’s skull. The hammer-wielding, battle-armored fat strongman dispersed into mist.
“Kill! Kill!” Ning’s eyes were filled with flame, the flame of stubbornness. But strongmen began to cluster tightly around him, each of them no weaker than Dong Ziqi in power. Ning was now only able to kill one strongman at a time, and as they continuously charged forward, clustering attacks against him, Ning was about to be crushed beneath their tide…