Chapter 578: Dad….
The young man with the black wings was named Yu Xinglong. He looked thoughtfully at the group of three for a moment, then turned to Meng Hao. “Jiusi, do you know them?”
The other surrounding silkpants naturally looked over at the strange scene, their eyes glittering. They were now no longer chatting.
Instantly, the entire temple hall grew silent. Within the silence, Ji Xiaoxiao and the other two felt an intense pressure, causing an unprecedented sense of deadly crisis to fill them.
“Cheater!” thought Ji Xiaoxiao. “He’s a cheater! Otherwise he could never become an Elite Apprentice!? How… how are other people supposed to acquire legacies here? How are other people supposed to survive!?!?” Her eyes were wide and sweat poured down her forehead. She looked like she was about to cry as she edged backward. However, the looks being given to her by the surrounding silkpants, who in her view were already dead, caused the sense of deadly crisis within her to climb to the pinnacle.
The male member of the Ji Clan was proud to the extreme, but at the moment… he couldn’t summon a scrap of pride. “This isn’t fair!” he thought. “How did he get his hands on such an identity…? How are the rest of us supposed to acquire any good fortune? Just from the look on his face you can tell that if he gets pissed off, he can say a word and… we’ll all be dead!! If our souls die in here, then we’re truly dead!”
“Of course I know them,” said Meng Hao, smiling and standing up. “Close the doors!”
As soon as the words left his mouth, the main doors of the temple hall slammed shut. Glowing lights enveloped the doors, and at the same time, virtually all of the silkpants in the hall rose to their feet.
This was the Demon Entente. This was their headquarters. If they killed people here… it wouldn’t be without repercussion, and there would certainly be punishments doled out. But they had plenty of measures to evade such punishment. If they wanted to, they could crush these three where they stood.
Meng Hao smiled and said, “I remember that the Third Peak has a Soul Scorching Cave. I can tell the three of us are bound by destiny. That doesn’t happen very often. Therefore, I’ll send you to the Soul Scorching Cave to train for a month.
“If you succeed, you’re into the Demon Entente. If you fail, then your death has nothing to do with us.” As his voice echoed out throughout the hall, the other silkpants burst out laughing.
The faces of the three South Heaven Cultivators instantly went pale. Song Yunshu reluctantly said, “Can we… think about it?”
“Think about it? Entering the Demon Entente temple clearly shows your intentions. If you back out now, then you’re directly humiliating the Demon Entente. Do you dare to humiliate the Demon Entente? Do you dare to humiliate US?!” Meng Hao’s voice grew louder and louder as he spoke, causing dark looks to appear in the eyes of all the other silkpants.
“Brothers from the Third Peak, please take them away. As for this one….” His eyes fell onto Song Yunshu, and it almost seemed as if he were looking at a dead person. “Forget about him.”
Song Yunshu heaved a sigh of relief. Only a short moment had passed, but his entire body was already soaked with sweat.
Laughter filled the air as a dozen or so Third Peak silkpants flew out. They grabbed Ji Xiaoxiao and the other person, and then started to fly off. In this moment of crisis, Ji Xiaoxiao gritted her teeth and then anxiously called out, “I know where Ji Mingfeng’s corpse is! He has a bag of holding with treasures in it. I can take you there!”
The other Ji Clan Cultivator’s face fell, and he also called out, “Ji Mingfeng was unlucky! He picked the wrong time and then died before he came here! Nobody killed him! He died naturally!! I witnessed it myself! Since I was there, I couldn’t possibly be mistaken!”
The words spoken by the two of them essentially meant the same thing; they were giving their dark vow to join this shady organization.
Meng Hao’s eyes glittered as he pointed at the male Ji Clan Cultivator and said, “Take him away.”
The face of the Ji Clan member flickered, and he was about to offer more explanations when the dozen or so Third Peak silkpants, having already been roused into action, whisked the man off before he could do anything further.
Song Yunshu’s face was pale, and his mind was reeling.
Breathing raggedly, Ji Xiaoxiao pushed her hand down onto her forehead, causing a soul strand to fly toward Meng Hao. Meng Hao looked at her with an enigmatic smile and then accepted the soul strand.
“Welcome to the Demon Entente,” said Meng Hao with a smile. The doors of the temple slowly opened. The observing silkpants knew that not all was as it seemed. However, everything was a matter of perspective, and to them, Ke Jiusi was part of their group, whereas everyone else was an outsider.
Ji Xiaoxiao forced a smile, then clasped hands and bowed. Inwardly, she sighed. She understood that from now on, she would have to try to convince other members of the Ji Clan that Ji Mingfeng had died because of an error in selecting the time period. That was why he had been killed the instant he appeared.
If anyone didn’t believe her, then as soon as Meng Hao faced any trouble, she too would be in a bad situation. Having reached this conclusion, killing intent flickered in her eyes. Some of it was for Meng Hao, the other was for her fellow Clan members.
Outside, the sun was beginning to set. As everyone began to depart, Meng Hao noticed Song Yunshu’s absentminded expression, and suddenly realized that, considering Ji Xiaoxiao’s ruthlessness, this Song Clan Dao Child was surely heading for a catastrophe.
Meng Hao shook his head, then paid the matter no more heed as he headed back toward the Fourth Peak with Xu Qing.
More time passed.
Everything was peaceful. Each morning at dawn, Meng Hao would go to observe and study the Fourth Peak to gain enlightenment of the Mountain Consuming Incantation. Other times, he would go to the Underworld Cave to practice fleshly body tempering.
Another month passed. Meng Hao wasn’t sure how the passage of time in the Primordial Demon Immortal Plane compared to that in the outside world. In any case, he had acquired quite a bit during these two months.
The Mountain Consuming Incantation was now in an embryonic form within him. He had succeeded in branding it into his mind. Furthermore, his fleshly body tempering had also succeeded to quite a degree. By now, his normal body was as tough as it had been in the Third Anima.
“It’s too bad the Soul Divergence Incantation… seems like a normal technique, but actually requires a very special environment.” Meng Hao felt it to be somewhat of a pity. He was starting to get the feeling that if he could master the technique, he would be able to make shocking gains within the Demon Immortal Sect.
In fact, he was now beginning to suspect that the Soul Divergence Incantation was the reason Ke Jiusi was still alive within the First Plane.
“The cultivation of this art is filled with profound mysteries. An undying soul….”
As for Xu Qing, she was completely submerged in the three hundred Daoist magics. Meng Hao did not disturb her. After all, gaining enlightenment of such Daoist magic was the most important thing for her and the others.
Meng Hao could tell that Xu Qing was extraordinarily qualified to seek enlightenment of the Daoist magic. Some of it had to do with the latent talent of her own soul, and some of it had to do with her host body.
Several days later, Meng Hao was floating cross-legged in mid-air, studying the Fourth Peak. All of a sudden, Ke Yunhai’s voice could be heard in his ears.
“Come see me,” said the low voice. Meng Hao’s eyes instantly snapped open.
Without hesitation, his body flashed as he headed toward Ke Yunhai’s Immortal’s cave. It didn’t take him long to arrive, and when he entered and saw Ke Yunhai, his face fell.
Ke Yunhai now looked nothing like the middle-aged man he had been two months ago. He was much older, thoroughly ancient, his head full of white hair.
He sat cross-legged on the stone bed, just like he had before. However, the oil lamp next to him was much dimmer than before.
When he saw the look on Meng Hao’s face, Ke Yunhai said, “Don’t worry, your dad isn’t dead yet.” He smiled, his eyes filled with kindness and expectation, and even more so, a reluctance to part.
Meng Hao wasn’t sure why he felt the emotions that he did. He had known all along that something like this would happen; but to see Ke Yunhai change into a white-haired old man in front of his own eyes, to see the aura of death around him grow stronger and stronger… it filled his heart with emptiness.
Not much time had passed, but the fatherly love from Ke Yunhai that Meng Hao felt made him think of his own father. At the moment, all he could do was stand there silently.
“You’ve done well recently,” said Ke Yunhai. “You haven’t brought about any more disasters for me to deal with. Since you’ve decided to focus on body tempering, then let me tell you about one of the three thousand Daoist magics that should be especially useful to you. It’s called the Nine Heavens Treasured Body Seal. It’s a Daoist magic that fuses magical items into your fleshly body, turning it into a treasure. By combining it with the Mountain Consuming Incantation, you can make your body into something like a mountain.
“In the rankings of the three thousand Daoist magics, it is number 9!” His voice was very dignified by the time he finished speaking.
“There is another art called Fleshly Sanctification! It is extremely extraordinary. It would be better to call it a technique than a secret art. If you can master it, then your fleshly body can grow exponentially powerful in the blink of an eye, and stay that way forever.
“Such a mysterious art is extremely rare. In my entire life, I’ve only heard of two such arts. As far the specific details of how much it can strengthen your body, father doesn’t know. What I do know is that among the three thousand Daoist magics, it is ranked… number 7!
“Regarding the top ten Daoist magics among the three thousand, even I have no way to acquire them, not even with further service to the Sect. Lord Li has set rules regarding the top ten. All of them, with the exception of the legacy of the Mountain and Sea Scripture, can only be acquired by entering the Demon Immortal Pagoda.
“It is not easy to open the pagoda. The seven great Sect Priests must all join hands to do so. The pagoda has 99 levels. Every ten levels, there is a chance to acquire a Daoist magic.
“I’ve paid a heavy price to convince the other six Sect Priests to agree to open the pagoda for you two times. You need to seize these two chances, and fight to acquire the Daoist magic that you need!” Ke Yunhai spoke all these words casually. However, from the fluctuations on his ancient face, Meng Hao could guess that despite his light tone, he really had paid an incredible price.
If he hadn’t, the other six Sect Priests would never have agreed to open the Demon Immortal Pagoda.
“Furthermore,” continued Ke Yunhai, “although both instances of the Demon Immortal Pagoda opening have been arranged specifically for you, in order to cut down on gossip, others will also be allowed to enter.
“You don’t need to worry. Although the difficulty level within the pagoda is extreme, father has prepared quite a few magical items for you. I spared no cost to give you your chance to get the special body tempering Daoist magics.” As he spoke, a reddish glow appeared in Ke Yunhai’s face. The glow was not ordinary, and almost looked like the last glow of light before sunset. He waved his hand, and a beastskin bag flew out in front of Meng Hao.
“Inside you will find 5,000 magical items, 30,000 Demon Weapons, 150,000 talismanic seals, and 1,000,000 Demon Stones. Take them. Even if you have to force your way through, then do it! Get to the top for me! Get those Daoist magics that you need!” From the way he looked at Meng Hao as he spoke, it was clear how much he doted upon him. Meng Hao’s heart began to tremble as he looked at the beastskin bag. He took it in his hand and then scanned it with Divine Sense. His entire body shook.
It was clear that virtually all of the items inside emanated a fresh, new aura. Within that aura could be sensed a bit of Ke Yunhai.
Shockingly, all of these items… had been personally forged by Ke Yunhai during the past two months.
Even as his allocated lifespan reached its end, he had spared no effort to refine all of these objects for his son. Embodied here was the love of a father for his child; after all, of the items had been refined with his own life force.
When Meng Hao spoke, his voice was not carefully controlled like it had been before. As of this moment, he had forgotten about Ke Jiusi. This time… the words came up from the depths of his heart. He was so moved by Ke Yunhai, so envious of this life, felt so many complex thoughts and emotions, that all he could do was look up and softly murmur, “Dad….”