Chapter 1079: Omen of the Door of the Ancient Realm
Currently, all the disciples outside were staring fixedly at the first golden gate stone stele, and that glittering name on its surface!
Meng Hao had made it into the top 10 in all of the other golden gate stone steles, from the second to the ninth. Now, if he reached the top 10 in the first stele as well, that meant that he would have already done enough to win the bet and get 300,000,000 Immortal jades!
When people thought of that vast amount of wealth, they trembled, even Fan Dong’er. It was an enormous sum that would move anyone, including entire clans and sects.
Despite being in the Dao Realm, the Demonic Patriarch’s throat instantly went bone dry. It wasn’t that the Demonic Cultivator Horde couldn’t afford to pay out 300,000,000 Immortal jades. However… it was still an immense sum to them.
With Granny Nine and the others there, there wasn’t a single trick they could pull to get out of the situation. Nor was there anything they could do to Meng Hao in the trial by fire. They could only look on with wide eyes.
Everyone watched as Meng Hao’s name continued to rise until finally it came to rest… in 15th place!
Hushed whispers could be heard, and many people began to pant.
“15th place!! Depending on how long Meng Hao can hold out at that depth, he might be able to make it into the top 10!”
“Everyone from the 15th to the 5th place remained at 60,000 meters, which is a major boundary. The difference between them is how long they can hold out!”
“If he can endure for 40 hours, then he can squeeze past the current 10th place name, who endured for 38 hours. Then Meng Hao will occupy 10th place! Only by enduring for 70 hours… can he reach 5th place!”
Time passed. 2 hours. 4 hours… soon 10 hours had gone by. Meng Hao remained in the sea beneath the sect, body shivering, eyes bloodshot. The terrifying pressure was like an intense attack that continued for every second that passed.
It wasn’t that Meng Hao wasn’t powerful, nor that he lacked a profound cultivation base. Instead, he simply hadn’t been in the Nine Seas God World for long enough, and was far removed from the cultivators who had actually been born here.
Although people like that didn’t have fleshly bodies that matched up to Meng Hao’s, and even if their cultivation bases didn’t match up to his either, they had naturally adapted. To them, sinking down and enduring the pressure was a much simpler thing.
As for Meng Hao, he had to pay a much heavier price to catch up to the others in such a short period of time.
He continued to hold on, and soon, another 6 hours had passed. Meng Hao had already been sitting there cross-legged for 16 hours. Blood oozed out of the corners of his mouth, and his skin was splitting all over. From the look of it, if he made even a slight movement, he would be on the verge of completely collapsing.
His Eternal stratum was hard at work, and his eyes were fully bloodshot. He could sense that this pressure was the limit his body could take.
Because of the intensity of it, his cultivation base was also fighting back madly, causing rumbling sounds to fill his mind.
The rumbling grew more intense, as if every beat of his heart and every surge of his cultivation base cause his whole body to shake. Although blood oozed out all over him, he could sense that he… was becoming stronger!
“When it reaches the point where I can unleash the full extent of my battle prowess at this depth, that will indicate… that I’ve completely acclimated to a depth of 60,000 meters!” His eyes glittered, and he clenched his teeth.
Soon the 20th hour had passed. 20 hours. 30 hours….
Outside of the first golden gate stone stele, the crowd was in an uproar. Because he had endured for 30 hours, Meng Hao’s name continued to rise, all the way from the 15th position to the 14th. Then the 13th, and finally… to the 11th!!
“Only 8 more hours, and he’ll reach the top 10!”
“From ancient times until now there have only been four people in the Nine Seas God World who have ever been able to make it into all the top 10s! If Meng Hao can last for another 8 hours, then… there will be a fifth!”
As the crowd discussed the matter heatedly, Meng Hao sat with his eyes closed to cover the veins of blood. He continued to endure despite what sounded like thunder pounding inside of his body. He was trembling as his cultivation base fought a desperate battle with the pressure from the outside, pressure that was trying to crush him to death.
“Just a little bit longer. I can hold out just a bit longer!” He wasn’t sure where his name was on the list, but he did know that for every hour he could endure, he would be that much more likely to make it into the top 10.
“For empowerment! And for the 300,000,000 Immortal jades!” Meng Hao’s eyes suddenly snapped open, revealing a gleam of madness. He might be trembling, and gritting his teeth to the point where they were about to shatter, but he knew that he could still hang on.
Soon the 32nd hour had passed. Then it was 34 hours. 36 hours…. all the way to 40 hours!
The atmosphere outside of the golden gate stone stele was explosive. Everyone was completely shaken, and all eyes were fixed on the name that could now be seen in the 10th position.
He had succeeded! He had surpassed the person who had previously held 10th place, and was now in the top 10!
“The top 10! Meng Hao is now in the top 10!!”
“From ancient times until now, he is the fifth person to do this!!” The crowd was in an uproar, and their clamor echoed out in all directions.
Fan Dong’er had a complex expression on her face. She couldn’t help but admit that Meng Hao… had surpassed all the other current Chosen of their generation. It was as if his overwhelming superiority enabled him to place himself far, far ahead of everyone else. He was like a vast mountain sitting in front of all the other Chosen of the Ninth Mountain and Sea, a mountain that was preeminently difficult to pass over.
The Demonic Patriarch stood there silently. After a moment, he sighed inwardly, then turned and left. He knew that there was nothing he could do now. Meng Hao had won. He had a mind to renege on the wager, but he knew that it was actually impossible to do so.
Nursing his hatred deep in his heart, the Demonic Patriarch snorted coldly, and his eyes glinted as he shot off into the distance, a streak of prismatic light.
In the moment that Meng Hao endured past 40 hours, blood spurted out all over his body. He was on the verge of collapse, and could not continue on any further. He could sense that under the vast pressure, his cultivation base was getting weaker and weaker. The more he fought back, the weaker he would get. Even the light in his eyes was growing dimmer. It was at this point that, all of a sudden, his body trembled, and a strange expression appeared in his eyes.
He had suddenly noticed that although he was like a candle on the verge of sputtering out, unexpectedly… a regenerative force had suddenly sprung up inside of him.
That power had apparently been forced out of him because of the intense pressure bearing down on him, and also because he was now in the Realm of the Immortal Emperor. At this point, all of the remaining power within his cultivation base was being forced out explosively.
Rumbling could be heard, and his eyes began to shine even brighter. The regenerative force rapidly restored him, causing his heart to tremble, and his fleshly body… to suddenly grow rapidly, even more so than his cultivation base.
The pounding of his heart sounded like thunder in his ears.
With each beat, the tears in his skin were healed, and gradually, an enormous door opened up in front of him!
That door was even more majestic than the Door of Immortality, and even more ancient. In fact, it was so archaic that it caused everything to tremble violently.
The feeling emanating out of that door was not one of Immortality, but rather, a boundlessly Ancient feeling!
The instant Meng Hao saw the door, his heart began to pound wildly; he knew exactly what it was. It was the door… that led to the Ancient Realm!
When a cultivator entered the Ancient Realm, the Door of the Ancient Realm would appear, in much the same way that a door appeared when entering the Immortal Realm. Once the door was pushed open, an enormous bell would appear!
That bell was the Ancient Bell, and once struck, it would ignite Soul Lamps. The flame of his life force would materialize the Realmwind, and in the following days and years… that wind would be used to extinguish the Soul Lamps!
Then he would enter a Realm in which the lamps were extinguished but the cultivator was not. When all of the Soul Lamps were extinguished, he would be at the peak of the Ancient Realm, and would have forged his foundation for the Dao Realm!
What he was seeing right now… was an omen of the Ancient Realm!
Anyone else other than Meng Hao would have long since been able to step into the Ancient Realm. However, the path he walked was different than anyone else. He was not willing to try to step into the Ancient Realm until he had fully absorbed all four of his Nirvana Fruits.
And yet, here was an omen of the Ancient Realm, not because of his cultivation base, but rather…
“My fleshly body!” he thought. His eyes gleamed brightly. He had never imagined that he would be able to force out the omen of the Ancient Realm while facing the pressure of the Ninth Sea.
“I understand now!” His eyes shone with the light of understanding. Actually, his fleshly body had long since passed what could be categorized as an Immortal Realm fleshly body. However, the door to the Ancient Realm had never appeared.
This was something he could not inquire of others about. Even the ancient records of most sects and clans wouldn’t contain the tiniest scrap of a clue about the matter. After all… in countless years, it was extremely rare for any body cultivator to reach a true Immortal fleshly body. As for an Ancient Realm fleshly body, that was even rarer. Even if such people did exist, everyone had different circumstances, and as such, would use different methods to make their breakthroughs.
But right now, he understood how to find his own path!
“The more my fleshly body is damaged, the stronger it gets! That is my path! In that case, if I can go down further… then perhaps I can enter the Ancient Realm, and my fleshly body will be even more powerful!”
Having reached this point in his train of thought, Meng Hao’s eyes glittered. He was just about to take action when he realized that the regenerative power within him was fading away. Furthermore, the boundless pressure of the Ninth Sea at this depth of 60,000 meters was actually forcing him up from his current position!
In the blink of an eye, he vanished, and when he reappeared, he was outside the first golden gate stone stele. As soon as he appeared, he coughed up a vast quantity of blood. At the same time, the pressure suddenly changed completely. Cracking sounds could be heard from inside of him. Without the pressure against him, his cultivation base suddenly exploded upward. The sound of the roaring crowd washed over him.
All of the Nine Seas God World disciples who had come to observe were completely shaken. They had personally witnessed Meng Hao’s name rise to the top. They had seen something that hadn’t happened for years! A fifth person successfully entered the top 10 of all of the golden gates!
Surrounded by the shouts of the crowd, Meng Hao turned around to look at the stone stele, and found that his name was in the 10th position.
“10th….” he murmured, and his eyes filled with the gleam of ambition.
“Senior Granny Nine, please give me some instant regeneration medicinal pills!” He suddenly spun, clasped hands and bowed deeply to Granny Nine.
Granny Nine looked closely at Meng Hao, and was about to say something, when suddenly she looked up, as if she had just noticed something. It wasn’t just her. All of the Dao Realm experts, including the two Demonic Patriarchs that had already left, suddenly turned with flickering faces.
“The aura of the great Door of the Ancient Realm. This….” Granny Nine gasped and looked back at Meng Hao. Deep in her eyes, a strange light gleamed. Without any further hesitation, she tossed a shining, nine-colored medicinal pill bottle down to Meng Hao.