Chapter 1117: He’s Here!
On the Sixth Nation’s National Aura Mountain, the boy Hong Bin sat grim-faced, surrounded by nine followers. His teleportation portal was ready to be used at a moment’s notice. All it required was a bit of divine will, and then he would be teleported away.
He held the World Seal of the Sixth Nation tightly in his hand as he stared coldly at Yuwen Jian. However, he did not teleport away.
Yuwen Jian hurried over until he was right outside the National Aura Mountain’s shield. Of course, without Hong Bin’s permission to enter, all he could do was hover outside and smile wryly.
“Brother Hong Bin… listen–”
“Beat it! Whoever you call brother gets struck with bad luck!” Hong Bin had a very unsightly look on his face. He glanced over at Meng Hao off in the distance, eyes wide. Originally, he hadn’t thought much at all about this latest addition to the Echelon. However, Meng Hao’s display of power in the Windswept Realm completely swept away any cavalier attitudes toward him harbored by the other Echelon cultivators.
He had defeated Han Qinglei, routed Lin Cong, and had then gone on to slaughter another Echelon cultivator.
Such achievements in battle ensured that he rose to prominence like a blazing sun, and was a person that no one would take lightly.
Hong Bin gritted his teeth and said, “I’ll let you say three more things, and after that you’d better get the hell back to wherever you came from, otherwise, I’m outta here!”
“Outta here? To where?” Yuwen Jian shouted, looking righteously at Hong Bin. “It’s not like you can leave the Windswept Realm! No matter where you run to, if Dao-Heaven thinks it’s worth it to track you down, do you really think he’ll let you get away?”
Hong Bin grimaced. He was also aware that fleeing was not a good long-term option. However, there was really no other choice. Dao-Heaven was simply too powerful.
“You can say two more things!” Hong Bin said, his face grim.
“You’re powerless to defend yourself,” Yuwen Jian continued, “and so am I, all because of this damned Windswept Realm and the changes to the rules. Don’t try to convince me that you haven’t noticed the writing on the wall. Furthermore, don’t try to get me to believe that you don’t know why I brought Meng Hao here. Cooperation could be doubly beneficial for all of us, whereas splitting up would be doubly detrimental!”
“You can say one more thing!” Hong Bin said slowly, placing his right hand on the ground, which caused the teleportation portal to rev up. All the while, he stared at Yuwen Jian.
“Fudge! I didn’t have three things to say, fool!” Yuwen Jian roared. “If you want to chicken out, then get the hell out of here!”
Hong Bin stared in shock, and his expression grew even more unsightly. He shifted his gaze over to Meng Hao off in the distance, then gritted his teeth after a long moment.
“Can he beat Dao-Heaven?”
“Maybe, maybe not,” Yuwen Jian said bitterly. “Even if you join the two of us, we still might not be able to beat him…. But, this is the only way we’ll even have a chance. The alternative is just waiting for Dao-Heaven to slaughter us all one by one!”
Hong Bin replied with silence. If Yuwen Jian had said that he was sure they could beat Dao-Heaven, Hong Bin would have teleported away immediately. Generally speaking, he didn’t trust anything Yuwen Jian said. However, for Yuwen Jian to unexpectedly respond in this way caused Hong Bin to hesitate.
“What does he want in exchange for my help!?” Hong Bin asked, looking at Yuwen Jian.
Yuwen Jian looked back silently at Hong Bin for a moment before replying, “Do you really need to ask?” After another moment, he continued, “Fellow Daoist Hong Bin, I might have conned you in the past, but you have to admit that when I did, I didn’t hurt you in any way!”
Hong Bin clenched his jaw, then waved his right hand. The Sixth Nation’s World Seal flew out, piercing through the shield and flying past Yuwen Jian toward Meng Hao.
If he was going to purchase a favor, it would be better to have Meng Hao owe him, than Yuwen Jian.
Meng Hao’s eyes glittered as he reached out toward the incoming World Seal.
“Fellow Daoist Meng Hao,” Hong Bin said, one word at a time. “I’m not sure what this shyster Yuwen Jian told you, but since this is our first time meeting, I want to make something clear…. Dao-Heaven has started killing people, and I don’t want to end up a victim. Neither does Yuwen Jian. As for you… if you want to fight Dao-Heaven, you’ll need our help!
“At the very least, you’ll need us up until Dao-Heaven is dead!”
Meng Hao caught the World Seal. After a moment of silence, he nodded. “You’re right,” he said slowly. “So. Are you guys ready?”
Such a response from Meng Hao caught Hong Bin off guard. He had assumed Meng Hao would make some sort of confident declaration, but instead, he had responded complete contrary to expectation. Yuwen Jian’s eyes also went wide. He and Hong Bin looked at each other, and then expressions of determination filled their faces.
“Fellow Daoist Meng, you’re very frank and straightforward,” said Hong Bin. “I don’t need to prepare anything. I’m ready to fight right now!” With that, he rose to his feet, his cultivation base surging. His energy soared, and a massive wind sprang up into the sky.
Yuwen Jian’s eyes gleamed with resolve, and his cultivation base also erupted with power. A second tempest roared up into the sky, joining with Hong Bin’s to shake everything. The shocking power caused the lands to tremble and the air to distort. They were like two burning torches in the dead of night, making a declaration to every other Echelon cultivator, even to Dao-Heaven, that they… wanted to fight!!
Meng Hao took a deep breath. He put away the Sixth Nation’s World Seal and then also unleashed his power. Massive rumbling could be heard as his energy quickly surpassed Yuwen Jian and Hong Bin’s, causing everything to shake violently.
These were three Echelon cultivators, simultaneously powering up, creating a will to fight that shook everything, issuing a direct challenge to Dao-Heaven!
This was no plot, scheme, or trick. This was an open and aboveboard declaration of war!
The mortals in the Windswept Realm didn’t notice anything more than a sudden increase in the air pressure. However, the cultivators could detect the shocking transformations, the trembling of the lands and the chaos up in the sky.
As for the raging will to fight cast off by Meng Hao, Yuwen Jian and Hong Bin… only other Echelon cultivators could detect it.
Han Qinglei and Lin Cong were no longer in their original nations; both were hiding in random places in the Windswept Realm. In one particular mountain cave, Han Qinglei suddenly looked in the direction of the Sixth Nation, and his face flickered.
Lin Cong was sitting cross-legged at the bottom of a lake. When the lake water began to vibrate, he suddenly looked up, and his eyes flashed.
In the Fourth Nation, Dao-Heaven was flying at top speed through the air when all of a sudden, he stopped in midflight and looked in the direction of the Sixth Nation. A bright gleam appeared in his eyes, and a faint smile turned up the corners of his mouth. He could sense the will to fight in those three bursts of energy, and could tell that they were issuing a challenge to him.
“You want to fight? Well then, let’s fight!” he said proudly. Then, he exploded with massive speed, transforming into a Blue Dragon that roared off into the distance.
The roaring shook Heaven and Earth, causing a massive wind to kick up, and the sky to move backward. When compared to the energy of Meng Hao and the others, his energy was actually slightly greater!
At the same time, he pushed himself with greater speed, piercing through the air and leaving behind only afterimages as he shot toward the Sixth Nation with indescribable speed.
Outside of the Sixth Nation’s National Aura Mountain, almost as soon as Meng Hao and the others unleashed their energy, they felt the response from Dao-Heaven. Yuwen Jian’s face darkened.
“Dammit. He’s even stronger than before!!”
Meng Hao’s eyes went wide. He had never met Dao-Heaven from the First Mountain, but had heard his name mentioned by other Echelon cultivators. He knew that Dao-Heaven was strong, and that, thirty years ago, he had earned the title of number one in the Echelon.
In the subsequent thirty years, other Echelon cultivators would have had the chance to catch up, putting them in the position to fight him. From the way things were playing out in the Windswept Realm, though, it seemed that Dao-Heaven… was still the number one most powerful member.
Meng Hao took a deep breath, and his eyes flickered with the intense desire to fight.
Inside the National Aura Mountain’s shield, Hong Bin felt his heart beginning to pound, and he started grumbling inwardly. Now that Dao-Heaven had revealed his energy, the bravery he had felt moments ago was waning.
After a moment, though, his eyes flickered, and he said, “I’m adept with Daoist magic. I’ll stay here behind the shield where I’m safe, and use magical techniques on Dao-Heaven. That is how I can support you, Elder Brother Meng and Elder Brother Yuwen.”
Yuwen Jian hesitated for a moment, then gritted his teeth. Determination shone in his eyes, and it looked like he was ready to throw caution to the wind.
“I’m a body cultivator, and I have my Six Times Nine God Body,” he said. “Brother Meng Hao, you might be the most powerful fighter among us, but you’ve never tangled with Dao-Heaven. Let me take the lead in the battle. I’ll buy you some time to analyze him.”
Yuwen Jian’s sudden statement caused Hong Bin to stare in shock. Yuwen Jian was the type of person who seemed honest, but was actually very treacherous, so Hong Bin would never have guessed that he would choose to do as he just had.
Meng Hao also looked at Yuwen Jian with a strange expression. After a moment of thought, he nodded. “Very well. It will help to have some time to study him.”
The three of them spoke no more words. They sat down cross-legged, Yuwen Jian and Meng Hao in midair outside of the shield, Hong Bin inside. All three remained in their peak states as they waited for Dao-Heaven’s arrival. Eventually, Yuwen Jian took out a bottle of medicinal pills and quietly consumed one. Rumbling sounds emanated out from inside of him, and he began to shine with a red glow.
“God blood?” Meng Hao asked suddenly.
“My last drop,” Yuwen Jian replied, crushing the bottle to show that it really was the last drop inside.
“How did you get it?” Meng Hao asked.
“By killing a God!” was the cool response. “Brother Meng Hao, if you’re interested, then as long as I don’t die in this fight, I’ll take you to the Seventh Mountain one day. We can take a trip to the God Domain and slay some Gods!”
Meng Hao nodded. “Deal!”
Time passed. Soon, Dao-Heaven was shooting over the sky of the Fifth Nation, causing rumbling sounds to emanate out. The ground quaked, and rifts tore open in the sky.
All of a sudden, a crimson chain appeared, wrapped around Dao-Heaven’s arm, which emanated the aura of an Ancient treasure. That was none other than his reward for killing the Echelon cultivator from the Second Mountain. Lofty Mountain Immortal Flail!
Gradually, what appeared to be images of lofty mountains appeared on the surface of the chain. Occasionally, even Immortal mountains could be seen!
Dao-Heaven shot through the Fifth Nation, face both icy and also filled with pride and self-confidence. Eventually, he reached… the Sixth Nation.
As soon as he passed over the border, incredible pressure weighed down on him.
Back on the Sixth Nation’s National Aura Mountain, Hong Bin suddenly said: “He’s here!!”
Yuwen Jian’s eyes began to shine, and he rose to his feet, looking more serious than ever.
Meng Hao took a deep breath and looked off into the distance. In that direction, he sensed a Heaven-shaking, Earth shattering power of qi and blood, rumbling in his direction!