Chapter 319: A Booming Voice from the Rubble
It requires a bit of time for Foundation Establishment Cultivators to travel fifty kilometers.
While he waited for them, Meng Hao sat meditating. He had now gained more experience in researching the art of Righteous Bestowal. As far as enlightenment regarding the Celestial soil, there was no need to be anxious. It would require slow and steady progress. By gradually increasing his collection, he would have time to study it properly. In that way, he would be able to slowly supplement whichever magical symbols he lacked.
He currently sat cross-legged, examining his Violet Core as it slowly rotated. In the blink of an eye, it would send out a massive pulsating aura throughout his body, which would then retract.
It was like lightning; extend, retract, a cycle. This allowed him to burst forth with a type of Cultivation base power completely different and far more formidable than that of the Foundation Establishment stage.
“Master said that after reaching Core Formation, I would be able to fuse the Everburning Flame with my Core. Then I would be able to utilize my personal alchemic flame….” Meng Hao’s eyes glittered. To accomplish that would of course require painstaking effort in secluded meditation.
He hadn’t even been in the Black Lands for a year, and yet his time spent recovering in secluded meditation had led to a complete lack of mental focus. However, the matters of the Celestial soil, the art of Righteous Bestowal, igniting his alchemic flame, and Ji Hongdong’s bag of holding were all things that he needed to allocate time for now that he was in the Core Formation stage.
Because of his concerns of being tracked down by the Ji Clan, he was constantly on guard. This entire time, he hadn’t been able to relax. However, he already had an inkling as to why no one from the Ji Clan had come after him yet.
He made his decision. “It seems I need to stay in secluded meditation for a bit longer. When I’ve accomplished everything I need to, I can go out and track down the final medicinal plant I need to make the Perfect Gold Core Pill.”
He lifted his head, and within his eyes could be seen a cold glow. His lips twisted into a meaningful smile that had a touch of a demonic air. It seemed to be filled with frigidness.
At the moment, the four Foundation Establishment Cultivators were flying through the air toward the short mountain. They approached without hesitation, and reached the fissure in the mountain in only a moment, and then shot down inside.
Huang Daxian’s face was pale and fear filled his heart. However, he also had an idea. Gritting his teeth, voice trembling, he loudly said, “Just… just down here….”
The Foundation Establishment Cultivators looked at him with killing intent springing from their eyes. “Quiet!” said one.
The four of them reaching the bottom of the fissure in an instant. They looked at the Immortal’s cave, and their expressions changed to fill with vigilance.
This was because the door of Meng Hao’s Immortal’s cave was not closed. Instead, it was wide open, allowing them to see Meng Hao sitting inside cross-legged. He slowly raised up his head; his expression was that of complete calm.
He wore an ordinary green robe, but considering how it strikingly framed his white hair, it immediately caused an intense fear to push down onto their hearts.
In addition, his face seemed devoid of any blood. That, combined with the icy coldness of his gaze, made the temperature in the area seem to instantly plummet beyond freezing.
The four Foundation Establishment Cultivators all gasped. Meng Hao’s appearance immediately caused an intense feeling of crisis to rise up inside of them. It made the man sitting in front of them seem to be, not a Cultivator, but an ancient wild beast. His gaze seemed as if it would consume them whole.
Cold sweat immediately began to pour down their foreheads. Their mouths and tongues went dry, and their minds seemed almost lost. They stood there, not moving a muscle.
Meng Hao didn’t say anything. Deathly silence filled the mountain fissure; not even the sound of breathing could be heard.
The silence gradually transformed into an intense pressure, as if the entire mountain were weighing down on the hearts of everyone present. The feeling seemed to place them at the border between life and death; Meng Hao’s gaze filled them with the profound impression that if they moved, they would be dead instantly.
Finally, though, one of the four Foundation Cultivators, the one with the lowest Cultivation base, couldn’t take the pressure any longer. Unable to stay standing there, he let out a howl and shot upward toward the mouth of the fissure.
Even as he began to fly up, Meng Hao lifted the finger of his right hand. “Pipe down.”
Two words, one sentence, and a miserable shriek rang out. A corpse fell down to land directly in front of the three other Foundation Establishment Cultivators, causing their faces to grow even more white, and their bodies to tremble even harder.
The corpse that had just fallen down had a bloody hole on its forehead, out from which fresh, red blood gurgled. The corpse’s eyes were wide open, and clearly filled with dread and despair.
The scene transformed into a new pressure that caused the remaining three Foundation Establishment Cultivators to be filled with awe. Although they had done their fair share of killing, they knew that it wasn’t a simple thing to be able to slay a Foundation Establishment Cultivator. All of them instantly began to shake violently.
“Core Formation…. This guy is definitely in the Core Formation stage!”
“Dammit, why did we have to provoke a Core Formation expert!?”
The three of them exchanged glances filled with bitterness and desperation.
Huang Daxian was trembling even harder than they were, and anxiety filled his face. He had guessed that Meng Hao was powerful, but he had never imagined that his power had reached the level that he could exterminate a mid Foundation Establishment Cultivator.
Some time passed, and the three Foundation Establishment Cultivators grew so nervous and frightened that it seemed their hearts might explode. Being forced to wait such a long time under the threat of death was something that ordinary people usually can’t endure.
Finally, another among the remaining three couldn’t take it any more. Seeing that Meng Hao had long since closed his eyes, the middle-aged man gritted his teeth and suddenly flew up into the air. At the same time, he crushed a jade slip, which caused a mist to surround his body and explosively increased his speed. As he seemed on the verge of making his escape, Meng Hao didn’t move; he didn’t even open his eyes. A look of excitement appeared on the face of the escaping Cultivator, causing the remaining two to hesitate momentarily and consider following him.
Suddenly, the rocks on either side of the mountain fissure suddenly seemed to loosen. A dark violet vine suddenly erupted out, emanating an intense viciousness. The end of the vine split into a jagged, gaping, bloody mouth. The Foundation Establishment Cultivator let out an astonished scream as he was instantly swallowed up whole as if by a giant snake. After swallowing the man down, massive amounts of gooey fluid flowed down the vine. At the same time, even more vines burrowed out through the mountain rocks.
There were dozens of them, writhing about. They sealed off the mouth of the fissure, and then stretched out to point in the direction of Huang Daxian and the remaining two Foundation Establishment Cultivators.
Huang Daxian’s face was pale white and completely blank.
The two Foundation Establishment Cultivators were left panting. The scene just now replayed in their minds, and suddenly they had the intense sensation that they were currently in hell.
“S-s-senior… spare me….” said the Cultivator of the great circle of Foundation Establishment, his voice trembling as he dropped to his knees and kowtowed to Meng Hao.
“Senior, I was in the wrong, please spare me,” said the other Foundation Establishment Cultivator, also plopping to the ground and kowtowing.
Both of them were scared out of their minds.
Meng Hao slowly opened his eyes and coolly gazed over the two of them, as well as Huang Daxian. He had long since taken notice of the totems tattoos on their bodies. They weren’t the same as those of the Western Desert Cultivators, but they appeared to be able to move just as fluidly.
“Are you here to request medicinal pills?” asked Meng Hao. He lifted his hand, and two medicinal pills appeared in his palm. They were bluish black, and emitted no medicinal fragrance whatsoever. In fact, faintly visible on the surface of each pill was the image of a ferocious, writhing centipede.
At a glance it was obvious that these were poison pills.
Before the two Foundation Establishment Cultivators could respond to his question, Meng Hao flicked his sleeve, and the two pills shot out like lightning toward their mouths. They had no time to react; the pills slammed into their teeth and then entered their throats. In the blink of an eye, they had dissolved.
The two men’s faces changed immediately. However, they didn’t do anything to resist. They could only let out bitter sighs; they knew that at the very least, they were being allowed to live a bit longer.
“Think of this pill as a punishment,” said Meng Hao calmly. “I want the two of you to take Huang Daxian and look around for soil that looks like this. The more you find, the faster I’ll dispel that poison. In fact, if you find enough, I’ll even give you some medicinal pills.” He glanced over at Huang Daxian for a moment.
Huang Daxian immediately gave a start, then loudly voiced his consent.
Meng Hao flicked his sleeve, sending a bit of violet-green soil shooting out to each of the three of them. Then, the Immortal’s cave slammed shut with a boom. The tentacles sealing off the fissure drew back, and everything returned to normal. With bitter smiles, the two Foundation Establishment Cultivators let out quiet sighs. They weren’t sure what extraordinary properties were contained in the soil given them by the powerful man in the cave. However, it actually seemed to them that they had come across a bit of luck. Their eyes gleaming, they exchanged a glance, then shot out of the cave, taking Huang Daxian along very politely.
According to Meng Hao’s requirements, they went searching for the soil.
Time passed by. Soon, it was half a month later. During that time, Meng Hao had become much more familiar with the art of Righteous Bestowal. The power of the art was difficult to fathom. It was similar to being able to touch something and make it become demonic; however, instead of using the word “touch” it used the word “bestow!”
Bestow Demonism upon any living thing, and use it. It also contained the character “righteous,” which was the opposite of “evil.” And yet, the art itself was clearly very aggressive and oppressive. It seemed like… receiving the Righteous Bestowal of a Demon Sealer gave the beneficiary some sort of official approval!
Furthermore, every time Meng Hao rotated his Cultivation base, he could feel a faint aura in existence. It seemed that if he wanted to… he could use this aura to perform the Righteous Bestowal and perform Demonic transformation.
The resulting demon would have no spirit, only an involuntary aura; however, Meng Hao would be able to control it. It would be a strange sensation, similar to the astral projection Meng Hao had read about in the ancient records of the Violet Fate Sect.
“Compel any living creature to become demonic….” Meng Hao eyes gleamed with a mysterious light. He lifted his hand and gazed at his finger. After a moment’s thought, he pushed his finger down against the floor of the Immortal’s cave.
“Righteous Bestowal!” he said. Immediately, ghost images sprang up throughout the Immortal’s Cave. Immediately he was able to sense a faint aura inside of the Immortal’s cave, set free from within the short mountain.
This aura was strange and filled with variations. Meng Hao’s senses couldn’t tell clearly exactly what it was. However, it didn’t take long for him to understand that this was… Demonic Qi of living things!
His eyes flickered as he sent his Spiritual Sense into the aura. A roaring filed his mind, and suddenly his field of vision expanded rapidly; he was now able to see everything for 150-200 kilometers around the short mountain.
By concentrating on the fusion of his Spiritual Sense and the Demonic Qi, he could sense everything in the area. Just when he was about to retract his vision, he suddenly saw something off to the northwest, what appeared to be a field of rubble. Ordinarily, he wouldn’t take note of it, but in this unique state, he suddenly heard a voice coming from within the rubble.
A mournful, archaic voice suddenly boomed out. “Heavens of Ji do not die; I do not die… Heavens of Ji…. You’ve been suppressing me for thirty thousand years, but I still refuse to step foot onto the Immortality Bestowal Dais!” As the voice echoed out, it suddenly said, “Who are you!?” Meng Hao felt as if a gaze as powerful as the Heavens had suddenly fallen upon him.
This chapter was sponsored by Fabian Betancourt Correa, Dennis Liu, Dylan Evans, Eero Mattila, Ty Campbell, and Bryan Nichols