Cutting Down Lin Mu

To be faced with such a deadly crisis caused Lin Mu’s hair to stand on end. He waved his right hand, causing a command medallion to fly out. Drawing deeply upon himself, he spat some blood out onto the medallion.

Instantly, seven-colored light emerged from the medallion, shooting high up into the sky.

“Sword formations, protect me!!” Even as the words left his mouth. Bai Xiaochun appeared directly in front of him, right hand speeding forth in attack. However, before his blow could land, Bai Xiaochun’s expression flickered. Although the vast majority of the sword formations up above were being pinned down by the Core Formation cultivators from the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects, there were still a dozen or so that suddenly shot toward Bai Xiaochun, as fast as lightning.

Lin Mu breathed a sigh of relief. Continuing to speed backward, he produced eight magical bucklers, as well as a jade slip, which he crushed. Instantly, the power of teleportation surged out around him.

Bai Xiaochun’s eyes flashed with brilliant light. “Another teleportation jade slip? I know the Profound Stream Sect is adept at equipment forging, but I think you’ve gone a bit overboard with the teleportation stuff!

“Although, did you really think that a dozen measly sword formations could slow me down?!”

Instead of evading the sword formations, he sped forward.

Rumbling sounds could be heard as four-colored light shone out to protect him, as well as a violet lamp. The dozen or so greatswords were blocked, and Bai Xiaochun began to close in on Lin Mu.

Lin Mu’s expression flickered, but before he could even react, Bai Xiaochun used the Mountain Shaking Bash. At the same time, wings sprouted out behind him, propelling him at explosive speed. Almost instantly, the distance between him and Lin Mu was closed, and he encountered the first of the bucklers.

A huge boom filled the air, along with numerous cracking sounds. More than half of the defensive bucklers were shattered, and although that slowed Bai Xiaochun down a bit, killing intent still flickered in his eyes. Next, he extended his right hand, and golden light shone out from his thumb and index finger. It was…

The Throat Crushing Grasp!

A gravitational force also appeared, causing the retreating Lin Mu to suddenly lurch to a stop. That was when Bai Xiaochun smashed through the last of the bucklers, to appear directly in front of Lin Mu….

“Die!!” he howled

Lin Mu was already starting to blur away because of the power of teleportation. Face twisting with madness, he shrieked and extended his right hand, which began to glow with a black light, along with the fluctuations of self-detonation.

He was detonating, not his body, but his right hand!

Even as Bai Xiaochun closed in, Lin Mu’s right hand exploded. As the force of the blow began to spread, Bai Xiaochun stopped in place, and his Throat Crushing Grasp latched down on nothing but air. As for Lin Mu, his right arm had been destroyed from the shoulder on down!

It had been wiped away, not just from his fleshly body, but from his soul!

His expression was twisted with madness, and he was soaked in blood. By this point, he was ninety percent faded away, and based on the teleportation power swirling around him, Bai Xiaochun could tell that there was something different about this teleportation. It was not like the teleportation he had seen Nine-Isles use, or the teleportation of the Foundation Establishment cultivator he had fought earlier!

Apparently, this teleportation was leading to somewhere much further away!

Heart thumping, he decided to try to probe for information. Voice cold, he said, “Even if you escape to that city, you’ll still die in the war!”

Lin Mu threw his head back and laughed uproariously.

“You don’t really think I’m going back to the Profound Stream Sect, do you? Don’t try to trick me into revealing any information, Bai Xiaochun. You won’t be killing me in this war!!

“I might have failed here, and lost my arm in the process, but next time we meet, I’ll be prepared for all your tricks. Then I’ll make you pay for what you’ve done, principal and interest!!”

As Lin Mu continued to fade, and the power of teleportation grew stronger, Bai Xiaochun looked at him and chuckled.

“Do you really think there’ll be a next time?” he said coolly, his eyes shining mysteriously.

When Lin Mu saw the look in Bai Xiaochun’s eyes, his heart suddenly began to pound.

“That was a nice trick, controlling those sword formations. But guess what? I still have more tricks up my sleeve. Grand lich, kill him!!” Bai Xiaochun’s Undying Live Forever Technique surged to life as he called upon the incredible power of the drop of Undying Blood he had used to connect himself to one of the most powerful entities in the Blood Stream Sect. Then, he pointed at Lin Mu!

Instantly, the grand lich, which was currently battling one of the enemy patriarchs, suddenly shivered. Its right hand, which had just been in the middle of unleashing a deadly attack, suddenly vanished, and when it reappeared, it was right behind Lin Mu!

Lin Mu let out an incredulous, miserable shriek as the hand pierced into the teleportation light and stabbed right into him, closing in around his heart!

RUMBLE!

Teleportation power erupted, and Lin Mu vanished. A moment later, he was gone. However, there in midair, gripped in the grand lich’s hand, was a wriggling human heart!!

It was bright red, but that color rapidly turned to gray. At the same time, an archaic aura spread out in all directions. Then the heart turned into ash. Bai Xiaochun’s pupils constricted.

However, there was no time to ponder the matter now, not in the middle of battle. Just when Bai Xiaochun was about to lead another charge toward the city, he heard cheering off in the distance. Looking over, he saw a group of about two hundred cultivators flying through the air at top speed, throwing out glowing spheres left and right. As the toxic smoke in the spheres spread out, the group would then charge in and unleash carnage!

Xu Xiaoshan was in the group, and he was shouting battle cries at the top of his lungs. Also present were Beihan Lie, Jia Lie and Master God-Diviner. That group of four led the rest of the cultivators along as they fought toward Bai Xiaochun.

This was the first time Bai Xiaochun had noticed them, but they had spotted him some time ago. Although they had scattered during the incident with the giant crocodile, the sight of Bai Xiaochun fighting spurred them into action. After grouping back together, they began to make their way across the field of battle to reunite with Bai Xiaochun.

Although Beihan Lie would never admit it, he actually missed the months of battling alongside Bai Xiaochun. When their eyes met, he snorted coldly, but at the same time, he started fighting even harder than before.

Then, Xu Xiaoshan looked over at Bai Xiaochun and shouted, “Bai Xiaochun, we’re here!”

Immediately following his call, two hundred voices rang out, “The Middle Peak blood master has infinite magical powers! The Spirit Stream Heaven-Dao expert can shake the whole world!”

Strange expressions appeared on the faces of the surrounding cultivators from all three sects.

Bai Xiaochun was almost moved to tears. Swishing his sleeve, he called out, “Come, brothers! Let’s go storm this city!”

The orders issued by the patriarchs moments ago had pushed the front line closer and closer to the city. The Profound Stream Sect’s morale was crumbling, and they were in full retreat. Finally, one of the Profound Stream Sect patriarchs cried out, “Back to the city! Defend it with our lives!!”

Immediately, the Profound Stream Sect cultivators outside the city all retreated at top speed. From Outer and Inner Sect disciples to the Core Formation and Foundation Establishment experts, every single one of them took to flight. As for the cultivators from the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects, they shot after them in pursuit.

Even the patriarchs of the Profound Stream Sect retreated, taking heavy injuries in the process. No counter-attacks were made. The entire sect fled back into the grand spell formation!

Everyone inside the city felt as if a huge weight were crushing down onto them. Outside, the cultivators of the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects were filled with pride, and the desire to do battle! Without any hesitation, they launched a major offensive against the spell formation shield.

Light flashed in the sky, and thunder crackled.

Sword formations flew through the air. Spirit Stream Sect war chariots attacked like roaring dragons. Enormous javelins were launched. The spell formation shield that was the last line of defense for the Profound Stream Sect began to ripple and distort. However, it did not fall.

The army on the ground charged forward, unleashing powerful attacks into the mountains.

There was even fighting on the other side of the mountains, and although the scale there wasn’t as grand as the main offensive, it was still brutal. Shockingly, the scattered remnants of the Pill Stream Sect were helping the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects lay siege to the Profound Stream Sect!

Their numbers were small, only a few tens of thousands. However, their hatred for the Profound Stream Sect vastly exceeded anything that the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects felt. Much of that was because, in addition to the actual cultivators from the Profound Stream Sect, there were also former Pill Stream Sect turncoats defending the city!

The fighting was fierce, and the reek of blood filled the area. Among the army of the Pill Stream Sect that assaulted the Profound Stream Sect from the rear was a young woman. She wore a white, gauzy veil, and was quite voluptuous. She radiated a bewitching power, and through her veil, it was possible to see that she was spectacularly beautiful!

That young woman had risen to prominence in this very war. She was Chen Manyao!

In addition to her poison skills, she was also a skilled strategist. Furthermore, some people said that her good looks made her the number one beauty in all of the Lower Reaches of the cultivation world!

Lin Mu, Nine-Isles, and virtually all other male cultivators were completely infatuated with her. Even the patriarchs of the Profound Stream Sect were shaken by her beauty, and desired to take her as a concubine to use as a cultivation vessel.

However, she had a strong personality, and would rather die than submit to such an arrangement!

Currently, her eyes shone with profound light as she led the charge among the remnants of the Pill Stream Sect, sending out orders one after another. The charge of the Pill Stream Sect cultivators, combined with the assault of the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects, ensured that the Profound Stream Sect suffered nothing but defeat after defeat!

“The Profound Stream Sect still hasn’t used the power of their precious treasure,” she said softly. “Once they do, their defeat will be certain!” Next to her were two patriarchs, whose eyes glittered as they nodded in response.

Suddenly, one of them looked up. “They just used it!”

Cutting Down Lin Mu

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The Slash Of The Heavenhorn!

In the Profound Stream Mountains, the spell formation protecting the city was gradually being worn down. Every time it was damaged, it would repair itself, but was clearly teetering on the verge of complete destruction. The newly returned Profound Stream Sect cultivators, as well as the Pill Stream Sect cultivators who had surrendered and were now bound by restrictive spells, were constantly feeding spiritual power into the formation to keep it operational.

Despite that, most of the Profound Stream Sect cultivators had sunk into reticent silence, wrapped up in numerous thoughts.

Although they were still capable of fighting, and were confident in being able to drag the war out a bit longer, they were all wrapped up in uncertainty regarding the future.

If they did drag things out, what good would it do…?

In the front, they faced the combined forces of the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects, and from the rear, they were being attacked by the remnants of the Pill Stream Sect. The Profound Stream Sect cultivators knew that, in truth, there was no hope for them.

The only thing that kept them going now was either loyalty to their sect, or fear of what would happen if they were defeated….

The patriarchs of the Profound Stream Sect were all seriously injured. It was with great bitterness that they realized that their opponents would never give up in the fight.

“Even if we made a huge sacrifice to somehow kill Bai Xiaochun, we still wouldn’t be able to recover.”

“They can’t wipe us out like this. The Spirit and Blood Stream Sects… might be working together for now, but that won’t last forever. We just need to hold out for a little bit longer…. Either their alliance will fall apart, or the Starry Sky Dao Polarity Sect will lose patience, and forbid them from trying to take on the Sky River Court…. The hope for all of that rests in killing Bai Xiaochun!”

The patriarchs of the Profound Stream Sect were not all in unison. Because of how the war had played out, they had different ideas about what exactly should be done. One of the patriarchs was an old man with a ruddy face and flowing red hair. Suddenly, he gave a cold harrumph and said, “What’s the point of arguing about things now? Even if we surrender in the end, we can hurt the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects in the process, and even break their alliance. The vital intelligence that Thousand-Faces sent to us before he died is something we can’t let go to waste!”

No one dared to speak up in opposition to him. This old man was the most powerful patriarch in the current generation of the Profound Stream Sect, Patriarch Crimsonsoul!

Cold light flickered in Patriarch Crimsonsoul’s eyes, and before anyone could say anything else, he pointed outside of the city and said, “Release the precious treasure. Prepare the Heaven Bow!”

In response, the lands outside the city began to quake, and crevices opened up. Wider and wider they grew, until they were fully 300 meters wide.

The land almost looked like oceanwater, undulated wildly, much to the shock of the countless cultivators of the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects, who scrambled to get to safety. Then, a shocking roar issued forth from beneath the ground.

The roar was so astonishing that everyone who heard it couldn’t prevent shock from filling their faces, and they even staggered backward. Some began to bleed out of their eyes, ears, noses, and mouths. A few people who were closest to the origin of the roar simply couldn’t withstand the sound, and their heads exploded.

Because of that roar, brightly colored light flashed in heaven and earth!

Even the Gold Core cultivators and the patriarchs were astonished, and looked over in the direction of what sounded like explosive thunder from the heavens.

The lands collapsed, sending dirt and rocks exploding up into the air. An area of land hundreds of meters wide completely caved in, and everyone nearby staggered in place as another roar echoed out.

ROAR!

Then, something burst out from under the surface. It was an enormous black star beetle, with a carapace that resembled powerful armor, and long antennae with sharp pincers at the ends. It also emanated a shocking black glow. 1

As soon as it appeared, the black-armored star beetle charged into the battle lines, causing numerous Spirit and Blood Stream Sect cultivators to scream as they were crushed. Shockingly, this bug had battle prowess equivalent to a Nascent Soul patriarch!

In fact, in some ways, it was even more powerful than that. Furthermore, black mist roiled off of its body that dissolved everything it touched.

Bai Xiaochun was shocked by the sight of the enormous black beetle. He had seen all sorts of gigantic wild beasts, but this was his first time seeing a bug this large.

Cries of shock rang out from the Gold Core cultivators among the Spirit and Blood Stream Sects as they recognized what it was.

“A black-armored star beetle!!”

“One of the Profound Stream Sect’s two precious treasures. They’ve finally unleashed their black-armored star beetle!”

The Spirit Stream Sect’s founding patriarch snorted coldly and performed an incantation gesture with his right hand. Waving his finger toward the sky, he said, “I summon the Spirit Stream Sect’s… Heavenhorn Sword!”

Suddenly, the sky began to tremble, and a screaming sound echoed out. It sounded, not like the screaming of a person, but rather, the screaming caused by something ripping through the air at incredible speed!

In the blink of an eye, dazzling silver light shone out from above as a black sword appeared!!

It looked like an ordinary sword, except that it was slightly curved. It had been forged from the shed horn of an inkdragon, and despite its relatively humble appearance, it was anything but ordinary. Visible on its surface were ten shocking silver designs!!

That indicated that this sword had benefited from a tenfold spirit enhancement! Even a piece of scrap iron that had received a tenfold spirit enhancement would be called a rare and powerful weapon. But the Heavenhorn Sword was much more than that. With a spirit enhancement the likes of which it had received, it could be considered something above a precious treasure. It was halfway to being a spirit treasure!

When it came to magical devices, they were usually referred to in terms of three levels; magical treasures, precious treasures, and spirit treasures. In terms of quality, each level was broken up using the descriptions of mortal, earth, and heaven. For example, only heaven-tier precious treasures would be the kind that could protect an entire sect!

In terms of spirit treasures, even the most inferior type, the mortal-tier, would still be enough to be used as a reserve power for an entire sect. Furthermore, they would never be unleashed lightly. Only if the sect faced imminent destruction would they be called upon.

The Heavenhorn Sword’s arrival caused a great commotion among all of the Spirit Stream Sect cultivators on the battlefield. They immediately began to cheer loudly.

“That’s our sect’s Heavenhorn Sword!! Hahaha! When the Heavenhorn Sword appears, it can slash forests and destroy moons!!”

“The Heavenhorn Sword is so powerful it can shake mountains and dry up rivers!!”

“It has a tenfold spirit enhancement. Nothing can compare to that!!” As their cries rolled out, it wasn’t just the Profound Stream Sect cultivators whose faces darkened. Even the Blood Stream Sect disciples had unsightly expressions on their faces; they weren’t exactly happy to see the Spirit Stream Sect stealing the spotlight.

Among the patriarchs of the Blood Stream Sect, only light snorts could be heard. Even they were shocked by the sight of the Heavenhorn Sword and its ten shocking silver designs. They had done much research into the precious treasures of the Spirit Stream Sect, but had never been able to uncover what incredible luck the sect had encountered to be able to perform a tenfold spirit enhancement without destroying the sword in the process.

The arch-patriarch sighed. “That’s probably the only item in all of the eastern Lower Reaches that has a tenfold spirit enhancement.”

Bai Xiaochun looked up excitedly at the Heavenhorn Sword, and especially at the ten silver designs on it. Those designs instantly reminded him of his turtle-wok.

Although he didn’t use the wok all the time, he knew that it was his most important secret. To this day, he still dreamed about using it to produce a magical item with a hundredfold spirit enhancement. He couldn’t help but get excited about how shocked everyone would be if he succeeded at that.

“I’m definitely going to do that one day!” Even as Bai Xiaochun’s heart stirred with excitement, Bruiser was on another part of the battlefield. He had just been prepared to make another offensive charge when a tremor ran through him, and he looked up, not at the Heavenhorn Sword, but at the black beetle. Within his eyes gleamed a flicker of desire, and he had to suppress the urge to try to eat the beetle immediately. After all, he was aware of the vast difference in power between the two of them.

After looking up in thought for a moment, he began to creep across the battlefield toward the black beetle.

Meanwhile, the Heavenhorn Sword descended in flickering light, like a black lightning bolt filled with silver. It sliced through the power of beetle’s roar like a hot knife through butter, a dazzling arc of light, a waterfall hundreds of meters tall, a silver rainbow!

Trembling, the black-armored star beetle looked up, and then roared as though it knew it was facing a powerful opponent. Black mist erupted from its body, forming into an even larger figure!

It was fully 3,000 meters tall, and although it wasn’t fully solid, it was rapidly taking shape. The energy that erupted off of it left everyone gasping. Roaring, the black-armored star beetle shot directly toward the Heavenhorn Sword!

Rumbling sounds shook the whole world. The blinding light shining off of the Heavenhorn Sword became the most dazzling thing on the battlefield.

However, the Heavenhorn Sword simply tapped the beetle. When it did, the silver lines on its surface pulsed, and the black-armored star beetle let out a bloodcurdling scream. The outer layer of its body collapsed, and its true form was revealed. The expression on its face was one of terror, and it was about to flee, but to the utter shock of everyone observing, it was sliced into two pieces!

Blood exploded out from the two pieces of the corpse, revealing that the beetle itself was something like a puppet, within the middle of which was a bizarre, black crystal!

What delivered the killing blow wasn’t the sword itself, it was the power of the tenfold spirit enhancement designs!

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  1. In Chinese, this bug is literally a “heavenly ox.” It’s more commonly known as a long-horned beetle