Karmic Hexing had been bestowed upon him by Patriarch Blood Demon when he reached the fourth level of the Blood Demon Grand Magic. It was a hexing magic that belonged solely to the Demon Sealers, and was something that only Demon sealers could learn and utilize.
Meng Hao had long since achieved internal enlightenment regarding the magic. However, after testing it out, he found that he was unable to successfully cast it consistently. Now that he saw the pitch-black imp fleeing, coldness filled his eyes and he immediately unleashed the magic.
When he raised his hand and then chopped it down, the entire world seemed to grind to a halt. He was now able see innumerable silk-like threads attached to everyone. They were wrapped and twined together as they spread out into the air to connect to everything else in the world.
This was not the first time Meng Hao had seen something like this. The Karmic Severing of the Ji Clan invoked a similar sight.
However, Meng Hao was a Demon Sealer, so he would not sever Karma, he would hex it!
Karmic Severing was, of course a severing, whereas Karmic Hexing was a type of sealing!
Severing someone’s Karma with Karmic Severing would result in their complete and utter death. It didn’t matter if the victim had numerous clones; any memories that existed of the victim in anyone’s mind would be blotted out. By erasing the image of the person in everyone’s mind, even if that person still lived on somewhere, they would be dead.
Such a fearsome Daoist magic was a fundamental magic of the Ji Clan, and in fact, could be considered the most powerful art in the Ninth Mountain. The reason being, of course, that the Heavens of the Ninth Mountain… was none other than Ji Tian. [1. Ji Tian is the name of Lord Ji, but could also be translated “Heavens of Ji”]
As for Meng Hao, his Karmic Hexing was, simply stated, using Karma as a hex.
It could use your own Karma to seal you!
The more Karma you possessed, the more powerful the sealing. It didn’t matter if you were a human, Immortal, or some other powerful being; as long as you had Karma, you could be sealed.
At first glance, it did not seem to be as domineering as the Ji Clan’s art. In reality, though… severing something was as simple as wielding a sharp blade. To seal someone with Karma, however, required controlling Karma itself, and therefore, a deep understanding of it.
The Ji Clan’s Karmic Annihilation had been cultivated to the ultimate degree, but definitely could not be used to control Karma. The Ji Clan cultivated a blade with which to sever Karma, whereas the Demon Sealers controlled it. With a single word, they could break the Karmic connection itself.
The two arts were on completely different level.
The power of Karmic Hexing was enough to shake the Heavens. It was like the Eighth Demon Sealing Hex, one of the eight great Demon Sealing hexes. Only such a peerless Daoist Magic was worthy to be among those created by the successive generations of Demon Sealers.
Furthermore, it was only by creating such an individualized hex that someone could truly be considered… a Demon Sealer!
“I wonder what my own personal hex, the Ninth Demon Sealing Hex… will be like…?” Meng Hao murmured to himself. His eyes were now blank as he looked up into the sky at the pitch-black imp.
He saw the innumerable Karma Threads attached to the thing, and then he saw them suddenly twisting and distorting as they entangled the pitch-black imp.
“NO!!” screamed the imp. “The seventh hex! It’s the seventh hex…. The seventh generation Demon Sealer has already perished, his Hexing magic was lost! How could someone in this world be using it!?!?
“Impossible! I can’t accept this! There’s only one sixty-year cycle left….” The pitch-black imp struggled, but the only result was that it became more entangled. Within the space of a few short breaths, it was completely wrapped up; escape was virtually impossible.
Of course, everyone who was watching saw something very different than what Meng Hao saw. They could not see the Karma Threads; they only saw Meng Hao point, and in response, the pitch-black imp suddenly stopped in midair. It seemed to be struggling, as if its body weren’t under its own control any more. Then it began to move backward.
Toward Meng Hao!
After only a moment, it was back in front of Meng Hao and then on the palm of his hand. Everyone gaped as Meng Hao casually put the imp in his bag of holding.
Gasps could be heard from all directions. The Blood Demon Sect disciples took it much more in stride; after all, they were used to Meng Hao’s enigmatic unpredictability. However, the hundreds of thousands of rogue cultivators were flabbergasted.
“Was that… a sealing?”
“But I didn’t sense any ripples or signs of sealing magic! It was like… like that pitch-black imp flew over of its own accord!”
“This Blood Prince of the Blood Demon Sect, Meng Hao… he’s beyond comprehension!”
The Black Sieve Sect was now completely destroyed.
The only thing that remained was a crater. The mountains were crumbled, and the once glorious sect now existed only in minds of those who remembered it. All that was left of this shattered and barren land was the unceasing rotation of the heavens above.
A great sect that had existed for ten thousand years, was now nothing more than wreckage and ruins.
Gone. Completely gone.
The surrounding rogue cultivators looked down silently at what used to be the Black Sieve Sect, and gradually, began to sigh to themselves.
Meng Hao hovered in midair, looking down at the ruins of the Black Sieve Sect, and thought back to the first time he had come here. He also thought about when he came here as Fang Mu, and then the third time he came, for Xu Qing.
After a long moment, he shook his head. He was just about to leave when he stopped in place. He looked back down at the ruins and then a strange light began to shine in his eyes.
“It seems I forgot about something….” he murmured. His eyes glittered as he thought back to the first time he had come to the Black Sieve Sect, and the ancient Blessed Land.
It was there that he encountered the vexatious meat jelly.
It was also where he saw that ancient cauldron!
It was an enormous cauldron that was square on the outside and circular on the inside. It was cracked, and contained infinite lightning inside, as well as several enormous statues which bore the surnames of various ancestors from ancient times. [1. The square cauldron was introduced in chapter 157, and the other things mentioned, such as the lighting and the statues, all came up in subsequent chapters. Interestingly, the title of chapter 157 indicates that the cauldron is square, but the chapter itself doesn’t mention that point. On another note, if you compare the events of these two parts of the story, you might notice an inconsistency. There is no explanation for that inconsistency, although I could come up with one pretty easily. In fact, with one additional line of text, I could solve the whole problem. Unfortunately, that would violate the translator code of ethics, so I will leave it "as is" ]
In the very center of the statues was an inner cauldron that was round on the outside and square on the inside. Inside of that cauldron… was the precious treasure of an incredibly ancient, almighty being.
Meng Hao’s eyes flickered, and he decided not to leave. Instead, he disappeared in a flash toward the enormous fissure in the ground. He had just recalled that the withered corpse had been sitting cross-legged in front of a door.
His second true self took the lead into the fissure. They sped downward and quickly landed on the lotus-shaped platform, directly in front of the doorway, which exuded an ancient and primordial aura.
Meng Hao hesitated for a moment as he looked at the door. Heart trembling, he sent his second true self ahead to enter.
After a moment, Meng Hao’s eyes flickered, and his divine sense that existed in his second true self allowed him to see everything that his second true self was seeing. Without hesitating, he stepped into the door.
Everything twisted, distorted, and turned blurry. When things became clear again, Meng Hao appeared in that same world that he had come to before, the ancient Blessed Land!
Because of his familiarity with the place, he was able to see that things were quite different than they had been before. Everything was still and quiet. There were no trees or grass, and everything was black.
There were still mountains visible, but they had black iron chains wrapped around them. The entire world almost seemed to be an enormous spell formation.
“That pitch-black imp was guarding this door,” he thought, “so it must have some connection to all this blackness.” He flew up into the air and, based on what he remembered of the place, headed in the direction of the enormous cauldron.
As he sped over the land, he was shocked to see that roughly seventy percent of the entire place was pitch black. The other thirty percent was gradually changing. Based on the speed with which it was occurring, it would probably take about one sixty-year-cycle or less for the entire place to turn black.
As he studied the land below, an an expression of reminiscence appeared as he recalled reuniting with Xu Qing for the first time in this place.
After a while, he sighed.
Enough time passed for an incense stick to burn before he arrived in a location that had not been covered over by the blackness. The same teleportation portal as before was still operational.
Considering Meng Hao’s current cultivation base and experience, he only had to look at it for a moment before determining how to operate it. He produced a spirit stone, which he placed on the surface. Immediately, the glow of teleportation rose up, and Meng Hao faded away.
When he reappeared, he was near the location of the enormous cauldron. He could hear the shocking rumble of thunder, and off in the distance, he could see…
An enormous, bronze cauldron!
As he looked at the cauldron, he recalled the visions he had experienced, of an almighty being who had refused to capitulate when the Ji Ancestor assumed control of the Ninth Mountain, and had used the cauldron to try to bolt from under the Ji Heavens.
His decision was the same as that of the legendary World Tree. However, in the end, the World Tree destroyed itself within the starry sky. As for that almighty being, after the cauldron was broken open, he was apparently eradicated in form and spirit. The only thing that remained behind was this shocking cauldron.
Perhaps to Lord Ji, the cauldron and its Heaven-murdering will were useless. Perhaps there was another reason why he didn’t take it for himself. In any case, to other people, the cauldron would definitely be considered a precious treasure.
Meng Hao took a deep breath and headed forward. As he neared the enormous bronze cauldron, the sound of lightning grew louder and more frequent. Blue lightning bolts fell relentlessly, transforming the entire area into a sea of lightning.
Shockingly, some of the lightning bolts were even black.
About 3,000 meters away from the cauldron, Meng Hao stopped. “When I came here with Han Bei and the others, we waited until the lightning was at its weakest before daring to go in. But now….
“Now… I’m quite different than I was back then.” Eyes glittering, Meng Hao strode forward into the lightning. Countless bolts of lightning fell, and at the same time, an ancient, domineering voice resounded out from within the cauldron.
In conjunction with the voice, the lightning fell with increased intensity. It transformed into something almost like a sheet that covered everything in all directions.
“I have some fuzzy recollections of you,” the voice continued, echoing amidst the thunder with might like that of the Heavens. “You shouldn’t be here. Leave immediately. If you take even a single step forward, a tribulation of fire and lightning will descend and you will most certainly die.”
Meng Hao stopped in place and then called out, “Senior, you must be the spirit of this treasured cauldron!”
The ancient voice did not speak again, and the lightning and thunder grew more intense. However, a path through the lightning appeared behind Meng Hao. Apparently Meng Hao was being given a message…. The only path for him was the one that left this place.
He took a deep breath and then said, “Senior, I’ve come here today for one purpose. I wish to take this cauldron away from here. Senior, could you please explain how to do so?”
After a long moment, the ancient voice could be heard once again. This time, its tone was colder than before, and even filled with a touch of disdain. “All you have to do is approach the cauldron and brand it with your divine sense. Then you can take it away.”
Hearing this, Meng Hao immediately picked up on the unstated implication. “You’re not the cauldron’s spirit?”
“Of course I’m not!”Previous Chapter Next Chapter