Chapter 456: Changes of the Lotus!
The golden lion roared as it neared. Suddenly, Meng Hao’s eyes snapped open. They had been closed the entire time in his efforts to not waste even a scrap of energy. It was in this manner that he could use the power of the Everburning Flame to fight back against the bitter coldness of the void, and prevent his life force from being exterminated. After all, he had not come prepared with any cold-resisting magical items.
When he saw the middle-aged man and felt his killing intent, Meng Hao had maintained his motionlessness.
He was waiting; waiting for the man to near him. That way, he could conserve the most amount of energy when killing him. The man wanted to rob Meng Hao of his life; how could Meng Hao not prepare to take the man’s cold-resisting treasure after that?
Almost the same moment that Meng Hao opened his eyes, he sprang into motion. His body immediately disappeared, then reappeared next to the man. The man’s face filled with surprise as he realized that his previous assessment of the situation was incorrect; Meng Hao’s sudden movement proved this.
“His soul hasn’t been frozen by the cold!” the man thought, his scalp growing numb. “The ice on his body isn’t fake. Neither is the cold emanating off of him; that’s impossible to fake. In that case… he really doesn’t have a cold-resisting magical item. But, without that, how could he possibly stay alive?!” The man instantly shot backward, trying to put some distance between himself and Meng Hao.
Meng Hao gave a cold snort. He suddenly shook his body, causing layer after layer of ice to crumble off of him. The Everburning Flame exploded with power, expelling massive amounts of coldness out of his body. It merged with the chunks of ice around him to transform into a frigid ice tempest that shot toward his opponent.
The man’s face flickered as the tempest slammed into his golden lion. A boom could be heard, and blood began to ooze out of the corners of the man’s mouth. His face turned green as coldness entered his body.
He continued to fall back with urgency, using minor teleportation to return to his own rock. However, even as he reappeared, Meng Hao also popped into being on the same rock. He lifted his right hand, causing the Lotus Sword Formation to appear.
The power of Time rotated out explosively. As it neared the man, his face fell and he slapped his bag of holding. A black statue of a closed-eyed monkey appeared. It immediately began to emanate a black glow; at the same time, the man began to mutter an incantation. Suddenly, the statue opened its eyes to reveal a bloodthirsty gleam.
The man’s expression became savage and he said, “Statue, kill this… huh?”
Suddenly, his expression changed and his body began to tremble. His hair immediately turned white, and his skin began to dry up and whither. It was as if countless years had passed by in an instant.
“This….” The man was panting as he once again retreated. Without hesitation, he spit out some heart blood and used its power to try to get out of range of the power of the Lotus Sword Formation. Unfortunately, he failed, and his body continued to wither. During this critical moment, his eyes filled with despair. He suddenly lifted his hand up and levelled a blow against his own head. A boom could be heard as his Nascent Soul suddenly emerged. It used a minor teleportation to attempt to get out of range of the Lotus Sword Formation.
“What magical item is this!?!?” he said, his voice shrill and filled with an unprecedented level of terror. His Nascent Soul began to shake violently; it wouldn’t be able to survive very long in the bitter cold.
As for his physical body, it died in the blink of an eye, transformed into nothing more than ash, obliterated by Time itself.
All of this takes some time to describe, but actually happened faster than the spark flying off of a piece of flint. The power of the Lotus Sword Formation was vastly increased in this place. Not even Meng Hao had been aware that something like this would happen. He stared in shock.
It took him only a moment to come to his senses, though. With a cold snort, he moved forward and grabbed the man’s bag of holding, including the monkey statue, which the man had only half activated. He also collected up the five small, white rocks. Then he flashed an incantation gesture with his left hand, causing the Lotus Sword Formation to return.
After that, his body flickered as he returned to his two thousand meter wide rock. He looked back at the middle-aged man’s Nascent Soul, and the killing intent in his eyes faded.
“Fellow Daoist, save me…” he said, his voice shrill with fear. “I’m from a sub-Tribe of the Western Desert’s great Goldenroar Tribe. What happened just now was a misunderstanding, you….” The man’s Nascent Soul trembled; cracking sounds could be heard as ice began to form on its surface.
The two rocks were only temporarily near each other. As of this moment, they were now moving apart, each one heading off in a different direction. Meng Hao realized that taking the time to kill the man completely would be a waste, and as such, had returned to his own large rock.
The man now only had his Nascent Soul left, and no cold-resisting treasure. He would die for certain.
Therefore, Meng Hao did nothing. He sat down cross-legged on his large rock. He then took out the five small rocks and studied them for a moment. He was about to erase the branding seal on them, when it suddenly began to fade away on its own. Meng Hao looked thoughtfully back toward the smaller rock which was disappearing into the void. The middle-aged man’s Nascent Soul was now completely frozen solid.
“The cold in this void is shocking,” thought Meng Hao, quickly branding the small stones to himself. Immediately, a glow appeared, surrounding Meng Hao and reducing the cold by more than half. Meng Hao let out a sigh of relief. Now, his confidence in being able to proceed through the void on this large rock was even greater.
Sitting there cross-legged, he produced the man’s bag of holding, opened it, and glanced over the contents. There were quite a bit of Spirit Stones and a random collection of odds and ends. There were quite a few magical items, but Meng Hao ignored them, searching instead for jade slips.
He found a total of eight. After glancing them over, he selected one, which he began to study closely. After a moment, he lifted his head up, and a bright glow appeared in his eyes.
“So, the great Tribes really are well-equipped to come to this place. They even have maps!” The jade slip he held in his hand contained a simple map. The map depicted four locations in which the fragments of the bridge formed large land masses. One of them was the place that Meng Hao had just come from.
“It seems this guy was heading toward Harmony City. However, I explored the place thoroughly and didn’t find anything unusual.” Meng Hao frowned. He continued to look through the bag of holding, eventually pulling out a jade box.
The box emitted a soft glow. Meng Hao didn’t open it immediately, but studied it closely to make sure there wasn’t anything dangerous about. Finally, he opened it, whereupon a dense Qi sprang out. The Qi contained a medicinal aura that seemed capable of moving his spirit. In addition, it gave him an indescribable feeling that was similar to ultra high-grade Spirit Stones, except, even stronger.
After taking only a single breath, Meng Hao’s spirit was shaken, and his skin went tight.
Inside of the box was a finger sized clump of black soil which was where the powerful Qi was emanating out from. After examining it closely, two characters sprang up in Meng Hao’s mind.
“Celestial soil!” His eyes glittered as he examined it. After doing so, he was now certain that this soil did contain the power of the five elements.
“Too bad there’s so little. If I had a lot more, I could use the same method I used with the Fire-type power to make my own Earth-type totem!” Meng Hao’s heart was beating as he closed the box and then put it away.
“If I want to get more Celestial soil, it will require robbing others. Well… then rob I shall!” His eyes filled with determination. To Meng Hao, the matter of forming his Earth-type totem was just as important of a reason for coming to the Realm of the Bridge Ruins as was acquiring a Demon Spirit. He looked out into the void and began to recall the shocking power of the Lotus Sword Formation earlier.
“The power just now far exceeded the ordinary power of Time. It was able to cause a Nascent Soul Cultivator to abandon his physical body in the blink of an eye. It made time pass so quickly that even minor teleportation wouldn’t work. The only way for him to get away was to cause his Nascent Soul to emerge. Just now, the Lotus Sword Formation emitted Time power equivalent to one thousand years!”
Meng Hao began to pant as he took out his Wooden Time Swords to look at.
No matter how he studied them, however, they appeared normal. Meng Hao couldn’t find any signs of change whatsoever.
“Could it have something to do with this void?” he thought. “Or is it because, as I speculated, time flows differently in the Realm of the Bridge Ruins than outside in the Western Desert?” After thinking about the matter for some time, Meng Hao couldn’t come up with any more clues. Nonetheless, his eyes flickered with a bright glow. If he could figure out the true reason for the increase in power, then maybe he would be able to cause the Lotus Time Formation to permanently increase its power.
“In any case, even if it only has this effect in the Realm of the Bridge Ruins, it’s still an incredible advantage for me!”
Meng Hao put away the Wooden Time Swords and look out into the black void. Up ahead, a large land mass was approaching. The rock he was on was tiny when compared to this immense, unmoving mass.
“I’m here!” said Meng Hao, rising to his feet. The jade slip he had acquired from the man had a description of the location up ahead. Just like the place Meng Hao had come from, this was… one of the broken remnants of the Bridge of Immortal Treading.
Of course, the Bridge of Immortal Treading was incredibly massive, so each of the tens of thousands of fragments were so large they were like continents.
Meng Hao’s two thousand meter wide rock shot rapidly through the void toward the giant land mass, emitting a piercing shriek. Meng Hao once again sat down. He collected the cold-resisting magical item, once again igniting the Everburning Flame to battle against the suppressive cold.
A massive boom could suddenly be heard. Meng Hao felt the rock shaking beneath him, a tremor which ran up into his own body. The rock shredded through the void; as it burst through, a bright light suddenly became visible.
Meng Hao instantly sent his Spiritual Sense out. Lightning filled the sky in this world, permeating it with cracks. However, as he looked around calmly, he realized that this world seemed more stable than the one he had been in before.
Mountains rose and fell off into the distance. There were even lakes and rivers. The whole place was very large. From his vantage point up in mid-air, it seemed this land mass was probably about ten times bigger than the previous one.
As the rock whistled through the air, Meng Hao stood up and examined his surroundings. Suddenly, a look of concentration filled his eyes, and he frowned.
Off in the distance, he could see seven beams of light twisting through the air, locked in battle.
Of the seven people within the beams of light, the two highest Cultivation bases were of the mid Nascent Soul stage. Those two were fighting back and forth, causing rumbling booms to fill the air. As for the other five, they were obviously allies of the two who were fighting.
The two mid Nascent Soul stage Cultivators were both men. One wore a violet robe, the other a white one. Both were handsome, and had extraordinary bearings. They continuously unleashed various divine abilities as they attempted to prevent the other from snatching… a white glow that floated in the air not too far away from them!
Within the glow, Meng Hao could see a finger-sized clump of Celestial soil.
This chapter was sponsored by Anthony Federico