Chapter 944: The Grand Elder’s Stance
As the two of them faced off, Meng Hao’s Dharma Idol appeared, 24,000 meters tall. Combined with his true Saint fleshly body, it caused his energy to surge with intense power that only continued to increase. He then extended his right hand, and a glowing sphere materialized above it. As it floated there, the sphere seemed to suck in all of the warmth in the area and cause everything to instantly grow cold.
The man’s expression was solemn, and his eyes focused intently on Meng Hao. He sensed a feeling of grave danger when he looked at the sphere of light. And then, Meng Hao started to walk toward him. It was at this moment that…
“Hao’er, come to the main temple!” The Grand Elder’s archaic voice echoed out around them.
Meng Hao said nothing, but his eyes flashed almost indiscernibly. As for the middle-aged man, when he heard the Grand Elder’s voice, he gave an inward sigh of relief.
At the same time, his eyes emanated a sharp glow, and a murderous will gradually rose up in his heart. That was because he had realized that Meng Hao’s Dharma Idol was still standing there, and Meng Hao’s powerful energy hadn’t faded away. It was almost as if he was preparing to refuse the Grand Elder’s summons.
The man’s eyes glittered as he readied himself. He looked at Meng Hao.
Ten breaths of time passed, during which Meng Hao’s expression never changed. Finally, his Dharma Idol vanished, and his surging energy dissipated. Everything returned to normal. However, the glowing sphere remained floating there. As he began to walk forward, it drifted up toward the top of his head, sucking in all of the heat and light around it.
Meng Hao put the bone-tip spear away, and then completely ignored the middle-aged man as he flew into the air toward the ancestral mansion’s main temple.
Inwardly, the middle-aged man sighed in regret, and then reined in the killing intent in his gaze. Finally, he followed Meng Hao. As for the other five men, they had not received fatal injuries, but were still very seriously hurt. They wouldn’t be able to fully recover any time soon, so for the moment, all they could do was struggle to their feet and then consume some medicinal pills. After that, they followed along, faces pale.
Meng Hao flew the entire way, followed by the six men. Quite a few clan members saw him. Many of them had originally intended to go observe his efforts in the Dao of Alchemy Division, and were taken aback when they saw him flying toward the main temple.
This was especially the case when they saw the six men following him, five of whom were seriously injured and had dismal, ashen faces. The clan members who saw this were all shaken inwardly.
From the look of things, a violent storm was brewing under the surface of the Fang Clan, and was just barely being kept under control.
At some point, the sky above the Fang Clan had changed from its usual bright, sunny, and endlessly blue appearance. Now, black clouds gathered, and the rumbling of thunder shook the ground. Flashes that resembled silver dragons could occasionally be seen flickering in the clouds.
When the Fang Clan members saw this, they grew very quiet. They weren’t sure exactly what had happened, but they could clearly sense that the air was growing increasingly colder.
Meng Hao’s expression was calm as he proceeded forward. The sphere of light above his head continued to grow larger. Soon it was 300 meters wide, and incredibly shocking in appearance….
The six Fang Clan guardsmen behind him looked on with tingling scalps, completely astonished. No one else understood why the sky had changed color and the air was growing cold, but they knew. It was all caused by the glowing sphere of light above Meng Hao’s head!
As Meng Hao headed toward the main temple, the sphere of light continued to absorb all the heat and light around him!
“This is the divine ability he created when he faced the sun!” thought the leader of the group of six men. His eyes widened, and despite the level of his cultivation base, he still felt fear growing inside of him.
It didn’t take long before the sphere of light was 600 meters wide. Meng Hao was now outside of the main temple. The first thing he noticed was the Grand Elder, sitting there inside.
There were also numerous Elders sitting in the enormous seats that filled the temple hall. Each one of them wore calm expressions, and none of them spoke, which actually caused the temple hall to be filled with enormous pressure.
Sitting near the Grand Elder were Fang Wei’s grandfather and father. Both of them looked over icily at Meng Hao.
Killing intent flickered deep within Fang Xiushan’s eyes.
Meng Hao’s expression was as calm as ever. Without any hesitation, he stepped into the middle of the temple hall.
As for the 600-meter sphere of light, Meng Hao left it floating just outside of the temple, where it continued to absorb light and heat.
Because of the sphere, Meng Hao’s entrance into the temple hall was accompanied by icy coldness. The light even began to fade, and frost began to appear on the ground.
The surrounding Elders’ facial expressions did not change, but they had long since sent their divine sense out to inspect the sphere of light hovering outside the temple.
“Fang Hao extends greetings to the Grand Elder and other Elders,” he said, his voice neither haughty nor humble as he clasped hands and bowed deeply. He was clearly following the clan rules down to the letter.
The Grand Elder’s face was expressionless as he looked at Meng Hao.
“Hao’er,” he said slowly, “you displayed shocking talent during the rise of the East Ascension Sun. You flew up higher than any member of the Junior generation of the clan has ever flown throughout our countless years of history.
“You stepped off of the planet and into the starry sky, you faced the sun for ten breaths of time, and you received significant good fortune and enlightenment.
“All of these things make me very happy for you.” Although he spoke words of praise and encouragement, his expression was completely emotionless the entire time.
Meng Hao stood there silently and scanned the crowd. He remembered the words of that direct bloodline Elder who had warned him about Fang Xiushan. Half a month had already passed since then, and from what Meng Hao could tell, this summons could not be a good thing for him.
That was especially true when he noticed the anxiety within the eyes of the direct bloodline Elders who were present in the temple. Furthermore, Fang Xi’s father was present, and was looking nervously at Meng Hao.
“The Elders have all proposed that you be rewarded for your actions,” the Grand Elder continued, “and after much thought, I have come to the conclusion that I agree. Your reward will come in the form of access to the clan’s ancestral land, which was created by the first generation Patriarch. At one time, our ancestral land was part of the Ruins of Immortality. However, the Patriarch cut that part of the Ruins away and brought it here.”
When Meng Hao heard this, his eyes narrowed. He knew that the Fang Clan possessed deep resources, but he hadn’t been aware that the first generation Patriarch was so strong that he could take away part of the Ruins of Immortality and bring it back to the clan to serve as an ancestral land!
“The divine abilities and magical techniques of the Fang Clan were not all simply handed down by the first generation Patriarch,” the Grand Elder explained. “Instead, for generation after generation, members of our clan have entered the ancestral land he left behind. After thoroughly searching it over and over again, the various magics of the Fang Clan have slowly been collected together.
“However… there are still many magical techniques that have yet to be discovered. To find them is a matter of chance and good fortune.
“Furthermore, for countless years, any Fang Clan member who reached the Dao Realm and did not perish off planet, chose to be buried in this ancestral land when it came time for them to return to the dust. There, they would leave behind their cultivation magic and other secrets, where they remain, just waiting for a predestined successor to go in and acquire them.
“As for the first generation Patriarch’s five great Daoist magics, four of them have been located. However, the most powerful of them all, the One Thought Stellar Transformation, has never been found. 1
“In addition to all that, there are also medicinal plants and pill formulas in the ancestral land. There are even Immortal Ancient Daoist Treasures, all just waiting for their destined person to come along and take them.” As the Grand Elder spoke, his cold voice echoed throughout the temple hall.
Meng Hao listened to everything, his face as still as stone.
“Opening the ancestral land requires a significant expenditure of resources. Generally speaking, we only open it once every thousand years. However, even though the appointed time has not arrived, we are going to make an exception and open it for you.
“However….” It was at this point that the Grand Elder suddenly paused and looked deeply at Meng Hao for a long moment before continuing.
“Great danger lurks inside. That danger exists in the form of trials by fire left behind by the first generation Patriarch for his successors. The ancestral land is a bizarre place, in which various strange beings can arise.
“Therefore, to someone like you, the ancestral land might be a place of good fortune, but it can also be extremely dangerous. Although not many people have actually died in the ancestral land over the years, some have.
“You may consider… whether or not you wish to take advantage of this reward.” The Grand Elder’s final words caused Fang Xiushan’s and Fang Wei’s grandfather’s expressions to flicker almost imperceptibly. Without even thinking about it, they glanced over at the Grand Elder.
Fang Xiushan’s brow furrowed. According to their previous agreement with the Grand Elder, when the ancestral land was opened, Meng Hao would be forced to enter it whether he wanted to or not. He was not to be given a choice in the matter.
As of this moment, both Fang Xiushan and Fang Wei’s Grandfather couldn’t understand why the Grand Elder, who had always supported their bloodline, would, at the very last moment, suddenly give Meng Hao the option of whether or not to enter!
As the two of them hesitated, the Grand Elder waved his finger, causing a vortex to appear in midair in the middle of the temple. The vortex spun out, growing to dozens of meters in size. It was filled with swirling mists, within which slowly appeared the image of another world.
Gradually, that world grew clearer and clearer.
Meng Hao’s face was calm as he looked at the Grand Elder. The fact that he had been given a choice was somewhat strange. After a moment of thought, he glanced over at the direct bloodline Elders, and could see that they were also hesitating. He was now being given an opportunity that he would be hard-pressed to come across in any other situation.
At the same time, he was facing imminent danger.
“Hao’er,” said Fang Xi’s father, 19th Uncle, “you really need to consider the matter carefully. I suggest that you don’t enter the ancestral land. Wait until you’re in the Immortal Realm. In another few hundred years, then you can go into the ancestral land. That would be much better. There’s really no reason for you to enter now. Hao’er, consider things carefully.”
Meng Hao was silent for a moment before turning back to the Grand Elder, clasping hands and bowing deeply.
“Grand Elder, am I the only one who can enter on this occasion? May I choose to decline the chance to enter?”
“If you enter, you will do so alone,” the Grand Elder said slowly, his expression one of neither joy nor anger. “If you wish to decline the chance to enter, you may go to the Dao of Alchemy Division to challenge the medicine pavilion.”
Off to the side, Fang Xiushan sat there nervously. He had paid a very heavy price to arrange this matter, and if Meng Hao didn’t enter, it would be impossible for him to have Meng Hao killed.
“Bear in mind,” continued the Grand Elder, looking at Meng Hao with a piercing gaze, “all contact with the outside will be severed once you enter the ancestral land. Nothing that happens inside will be visible to any of us.”
Those words caused Fang Xiushan’s face to twitch. He looked over at his father, and saw that, although his face was expressionless, his pupils had constricted.
Meng Hao was unsure as to why the Grand Elder was taking this stance. The normal thing to happen would be for the Grand Elder to give him no choice in the matter. For things to turn out this way caused Meng Hao to look over at the vortex thoughtfully. He was just about to say that he would decline what was obviously an ambush set up by Fang Xiushan when suddenly, a tremor ran through his body. As he looked into the world inside of the vortex, his eyes suddenly went wide.
For a moment, it seemed as if he had caught sight of something completely unbelievable. However, his expression quickly returned to normal. Nontheless, inwardly, he was more shocked than if he had been struck by lightning. His heart began to pound beyond control.
Mouth and throat dry, he immediately said, “I choose to enter the ancestral land!”
- Yes, the final characters of the name of this magic are the same characters as the novel Stellar Transformations by I Eat Tomatoes ↩