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Book 38, Daomerge, Chapter 34 – Sourcewalkers

Another 129 years went by in the blink of an eye.

Whoooosh. A vortex could be seen rising into the skies in the distance, causing spacetime to be twisted and distorted. Ji Ning and the other three were in a cave close to the margins of the vortex, peering towards it.

Azurefiend murmured softly, “According to what Realmslord Windgrace said, the most precious materials are all located deep inside the vortexes, which connect to the very deepest underground tunnels. Darknorth, shall we go in and take a look?”

“No need. Our target is the Daomerge Firecloud Flower! There’s no need for us to enter the depths of those vortexes,” Ning said. “If we do go in, we would be easily discovered by the Sourcewalkers.”

“Alright.” Azurefiend didn’t argue, even though he really did want to go in and give it a try. They hadn’t picked up many treasures in the past few years, as they were afraid that scouring too much would result in them being discovered, but even so the few treasures Azurefiend had picked up were worth two or three times more than his previous networth. Thus, he wanted to go into the depths of the abyss and search for even rarer treasures… but the only way he could do that was if he relied on Ning’s Flamewing God.

“The other valley Realmslord Windgrace mentioned isn’t too far away. We should be able to reach it in around thirty years,” Ning said. “Let us continue.”

Daomerge Firecloud Flowers were simply too rare. They had searched for many years but found nothing at all. They did find another Incense Spirit-Fruit, but unfortunately it was yet another unripened one.

Ning and the others had only walked for the time needed to boil a kettle of tea when suddenly… boom! A blurry black light suddenly appeared beneath their feet, oozing out of the icy ground and forming into curved lines that stretched out trillions of kilometers.

“Not good. That’s a formation.” Ning’s face tightened. “An alarm formation.”

“We’ve been discovered.” Hegemon Azurefiend was shocked as well.

Rumble… an enormous earth-shaking boom rang out in the distance as the ground began to crack apart. A titanic mountain-sized ice humanoid emerged from the ground, using his two hands to tear through it as rose from the depths.

Ning’s gaze narrowed. The ice here was so tough that if he didn’t use his Darknorth swords, he’d need to use roughly 50% of his full power to break through it. Most likely, fairly powerful Archons would have to use 100% of their full power to just barely break through the ice. This person, however, had been able to instantly tear through the ground with his bare hands. This terrifying level of strength alone showed that this creature was vastly stronger than Hegemons. Most likely, he was at the Otherverse Lord level of power.

“That’s the Sourcewalker,” Ning sent mentally.

“Sourcewalker?” Azurefiend’s face turned pale.

“He finally came!” Flamewing, on the other hand, was excited. It really hated the Icewind Sea, as every single part of this place was filled with uncomfortable icy energy. When it saw the Sourcewalker, it instantly grew excited.

The Sourcewalker before them was covered in a layer of extremely thick ice which served as a form of icy armor which glowed with azure light. His head was covered with a helmet that had two icicles protruding from it, and he had long azure hair which fell down to his waist. He had an great deal of facial hair, and his gloomy azure eyes were filled with rage and violence.

“More of you thieves, come to steal my treasures!” The Sourcewalker let out a furious bellow, his voice transforming into a wind of terrifying power which swept out in every direction. The endless might in his voice alone caused Ning and Azurefiend to quail. The difference in power was simply too great.

“We ran into a Sourcewalker before we even found a Daomerge Firecloud Flower. What terrible luck.” Ning felt rather resigned. They hadn’t even gone into any of the vortexes or deep underground, where the treasures were more abundant and more valuable. That was where the Sourcewalkers usually resided.

“Sourcewalker,” Ning called out loudly, “We’ve come here just for the sake of finding a Daomerge Firecloud Flower! Its not all that valuable, and we’re willing to use our own treasures to trade for one. We’ll leave immediately after acquiring the flower.”

Daomerge Firecloud Flowers were incredible treasures for Daolords, but they were fairly ordinary when compared to the other treasures of the Icewind Sea. There were treasures here which would drive even Hegemons and Otherverse Lords mad with excitement.

“A Daomerge Firecloud Flower?” The ice-armored Sourcewalker was 540,000 meters tall. It stared downwards at Ning’s group and said angrily, “You can forget about taking away so much as a piece of ice from my turf! All you cultivators are nothing more than damnable thieves. This is my territory!”

“We can trade for it with our treasures!” Ning said frantically.

“Treasures? What use do I have for your miserable treasures?” The Sourcewalker took a furious step forwards, then shot forwards through the air: “Just die instead!”

Ning felt speechless. This Sourcewalker was just as Realmslord Windgrace had described; a berserker!

Whoosh. The Sourcewalker wielded a long frozen halberd which gleamed with azure light, sweeping it towards Ning’s group with such power that Ning had no choice but to instruct Flamewing to defend. “Flamewing, go!”

“Haha… I was at the verge of losing my patience!” The chubby Flamewing instantly let out an excited cry as it reverted to its true form, transforming into the titanic Flamewing God. Its giant flaming wings spread out fully as its body became bathed in furious flames that were so powerful, even the frigid energy of the surrounding area was pushed away. Everything within ten billion kilometers began to grow blazingly hot.

Otherverses had their own prime essences, as did the Icewind Sea… and in a sense, the Flamewing God itself had its own prime essences! Its energy levels truly were virtually inexhaustible, and its body was virtually indestructible. Ever since it was born, it had wandered the Chaosverse and had devoured entire realmverses with ease. Truly, its power was inconceivable. Its only weakness was that its level of insight was extremely, extremely low. If it was just a bit more clever, it would be able to massacre even Otherverse Lords with ease.

Still, all things came in balance. There was no way even the prime essences of the Chaosverse could give birth to creatures as powerful as Chaos Primordials which also had the comprehension skills of Sourcewalkers. This was completely impossible.

“A Chaos Primordial?” The attacking Sourcewalker was rather stunned when it saw those vast wings unfurl and the flames spread out in every direction around the Flamewing God.

“Haha, I’ve never eaten a Sourcewalker before!” Flamewing howled through the skies, while Ning, Azurefiend, and Whitethaw all immediately moved to hide within the realmship. They weren’t qualified to get involved in a battle of this magnitude.

“This is my first time meeting a Chaos Primordial as well. Let’s do this!” The Sourcewalker was just as eager to do battle, and he valiantly charged forwards with his halberd at the ready.

Swoosh! His halberd suddenly pierced forwards, howling through the skies with incredible speed… but Flamewing was even faster! The strike missed, just barely managing to scrape past Flamewing’s claws but not injuring Flamewing in the slightest.

“Up you go!” The Sourcewalker suddenly changed his stance. Previously, he had been using the halberd to ‘stab’ at Flamewing; now, he suddenly lifted it upwards!

This was a strike that seemed to split even the heavens in twain. Not even Flamewing was able to avoid this strike… but of course, Flamewing wouldn’t deign to do so.

Boom! Flamewing had already been flying through the air; this strike sent it stumbling a few hundred kilometers higher.

The Sourcewalker was shocked. When he had used this killer technique against the cultivator Otherverse Lords he had fought, they had all been knocked backwards and suffered heavy injuries. The Chaos Primordial had merely stumbled a bit?

“Grwaaaar!” Flamewing excitedly flapped its wings, instantly charging downwards while using its enormous and thick claws to strike at the Sourcewalker. The Sourcewalker hurriedly brandished his halberd, spinning it into a circle that defended against the approaching attack.

Flamewing completely ignored the profundity of his opponent’s attack, just striking down with its claws in an absolutely savage blow. BOOM! An enormous collision rang out as the earth itself began to split apart. As for the Sourcewalker, half of its body had just been hammered into the ground from this collision.

“I ablated over 90% of its power, but it still suppressed me completely?” The Sourcewalker was rather speechless at this result. Moments later, the look within its eyes grew even more frenzied. “Again!”

Boom. Boom. Boom! The Sourcewalker was incredibly valiant. At first, it chose to meet all of Flamewing’s attacks head on, but later on it began to choose to dodge instead in an effort to win through technique. In terms of comprehension, it was already at the Archon level of insight. Due to its innate gifts, this level of insight was already enough for it to unleash the Otherverse Lord level of power in battle! Supposedly, the legendary Sourcewalkers who could fight even Sithe Exalts were actually just at the Hegemonic level of insight.

Then again, the Hegemonic level of insight was an incredibly high level. Realmslord Windgrace, the Lonely King, and the other major powers were all at this level of insight. The only thing above this level was Autarchy.

Every so often, the Sourcewalker was sent slamming into the nearby mountains, hammered into the ground, or smashed so hard that it created deep craters and gouges in the earth beneath it.

Clearly, after Flamewing became a bit more accustomed to the way in which the Sourcewalker fought, Flamewing became able to completely dominate it in battle. The Sourcewalker had even lots his helmet, and his azure hair fluttered about wildly. He continued to roar with fury, but it was clear that he was being crushed in this fight. However, the icy armor that covered his upper body remained completely unscathed. It was quite a marvelous item.

“Darknorth, the Sourcewalker can’t hold back Flamewing.” Azurefiend chuckled merrily as he watched from within the realmship. “The Sourcewalker will probably retreat soon. If this fight continues, it’ll be nothing but bad news for him.”

Ning smiled and nodded as well. He was still going to be able to find the Daomerge Firecloud Flower.

Boom! Boom! Boom! At first, the Sourcewalker had been filled with a towering desire to do battle, but after being dominated for so long it was beginning to feel rather miserable. It had been a long, long time since it had felt this miserable.

His body wasn’t nearly as tough as a Chaos Primordial’s, but it was still vastly better than the bodies of cultivators. Thus, when he encountered cultivators like Realmslord Windgrace, he was able to chase down the cultivators and beat them down as he pleased. It had been quite some time since it had suffered in a fight like this.

After being slammed into a mountain yet again, the Sourcewalker angrily raised his head. His long azure hair fluttered in the wind as he roared, “Big brother! Hurry up and come out, I’m getting killed here!” His roar was like thunder, and it shook the world around them.

“Big brother?” Within the realmship, Ning and Azurefiend’s eyes both bulged out. “He has a big brother?” Ning couldn’t help but feel rather dazed.


Book 38, Daomerge, Chapter 35 – Clash

“I thought you enjoyed fighting and causing a ruckus. Why are you asking me for help this time?” An icy voice rang out, shaking the world around them as the icy ground off in the distance suddenly split apart. An enormous crevice appeared, followed by a similarly towering figure emerging from it. This figure was dressed in long black robes that had silver patterns embroidered on them. His black hair fell down to his waist. He looked fairly handsome, but his eyes were ice cold. It felt as though there was nothing capable of stirring or shaking his heart.

He slowly walked over, causing an invisible wave of pressure to push down upon Ji Ning and Azurefiend. Both turned pale.

“This black-robed Sourcewalker is far more powerful than the other one,” Ning mused.

“Gwaaaaar! Another one? I’ll eat this one, then I’ll eat you!”

The fire blazing around Flamewing’s towered ever-higher as the boundless sea of flames around him swept outwards. He flapped his wings, once more charging towards the increasingly-battered armored Sourcewalker.

“Big brother!” The armored Sourcewalker was terrified, hurriedly dodging while flying towards his big brother. The black-robed Sourcewalker took a single step forwards, moving to block in front of his little brother.

“Fuck off!” The black-robed Sourcewalker stretched out both hands simultaneously, causing a strange, gloomy black light to appear from his palms which seemed capable of devouring everything in the world. As for Flamewing, he continued to charge forwards with brute force as he sent his giant fleshy claws towards the black light.

BOOM! The twin palms met the twin claw head-on. Both were extremely confident in their abilities.

The black-robed Sourcewalker’s face tightened slightly as he hurriedly took a few steps back, each step causing the icy ground beneath him to crack and shatter. He had to retreat a total of eight steps before coming to a halt. As for Flamewing, it was also knocked flying backwards. It had to hurriedly flap its wings a few times before stabilizing itself in midair.

“What?! He’s actually able to fight Flamewing head-on to a standstill?” Ning, watching from within the distant realmship, felt rather stunned. Although Flamewing seemed to have a slight advantage, the difference in power was clearly minimal.

“This Sourcewalker is as powerful as that?!” Azurefiend was shocked as well. “Chaos Primordials can effortlessly dominate even Otherverse Lords and Golden Emperors! It took three Sithe Exalts working together to catch the Flamewing God. For this Sourcewalker to be able to fight Flamewing to a standstill means that it is probably quite close in power to the Sithe Exalts.”

“Be careful, Flamewing!” Ning immediately sent mentally. “Don’t be overconfident.”

“Wow!” Flamewing let out a strange cry in midair, the scales on its body standing up like the hair on a cat. An excited look was in its eyes as it howled, “You are pretty strong, Sourcewalker! The only foes I’ve ever met who are stronger than you were those Sithe Exalts. However… you still aren’t a match for me!”

“I’ve long heard of how powerful Chaos Primordials are… but now, it seems, you aren’t all that impressive.” The black-robed Sourcewalker remained quite confident in his chances. He leapt forwards, once more charging towards Flamewing.

Swish! Swish! Swish! Both transformed into blurs as they fought against each other at high speeds. The black-robed Sourcewalker had clearly chosen to stop using the clumsy method of meeting Flamewing blow-for-blow, as that was simply too exhausting. Unlike the Chaos Primordial, he didn’t have endless reservoirs of energy. However, he clearly was highly superior on a technical level, and so he chose to use his superior techniques to deal with Flamewing, using all sorts of defensive techniques to ablate and draw away Flamewing’s power, causing Flamewing to begin to struggle a little bit.

“You still aren’t a match for me!” Flamewing let out a loud bellow as it finally went crazy. SWISH! Its speed instantly skyrocketed to its absolute maximum.

“That’s fast.” The black-robed Sourcewalker’s face tightened.

Riiiiip! Flamewing pounced towards its foe at terrifying speeds, its fierce claws tearing through the air. The black-robed Sourcewalker hurriedly moved to defend. Just as it was about to counter-attack, Flamewing suddenly flew away, then arced back from afar to once more assault him.

Swish! Swish! Swish! The skies became filled with countless streaks of flaming light. Flamewing was so incredibly fast that this was all that could be seen of him. There was no need for it to allow the black-robed Sourcewalker to fight back against it. It relied on its raw speed to launch repeated and unanswered attacks, causing even the black-robed Sourcewalker to feel quite frustrated. Flamewing was simply too fast!

Flamewing’s speed vastly surpassed the speed of any Hegemon. Even Hegemon Thunderstar, who was extremely skilled in speed, was far from being a match for Flamewing; only when Hegemon Thunderstar was riding in his realmship was he able to just barely surpass Flamewing in speed. As for Ning, he was slower than Flamewing even in a realmship.

“It’s too fast. Although I have a realmship, I still wouldn’t be able to outpace it,” the black-robed Sourcewalker mused. In the end, it had yet to reach Hegemony in terms of its insights. In contrast, Hegemon Thunderstar had become a Hegemon via the Dao of Lightning.

“Master! Master!” Flamewing sent mentally to Ning, “This Sourcewalker is a pain to deal with. I’ve yet to harm him at all, despite hitting him with everything I have. It doesn’t look like he’s using up too much energy. If this continues, he’ll probably be able to continue holding on against me.”

Although Flamewing had the initiative thanks to its speed, the black-robed Sourcewalker had reached such a high level of insight that he was still capable of protecting himself.

Ning instantly began to frown. What were they to do? Flamewing was extremely strong, having completely the first armored Sourcewalker and injuring him, causing his energy to deplete rapidly. As a result, the first Sourcewalker chose to flee after a brief bout! But this black-robed Sourcewalker… its only weakness lay in its speed. In all other aspects, it was Flamewing’s equal; in fact, it actually had an advantage in close combat.

“You are pretty strong after all, Chaos Primordial. You’ll make a good mount for me!” The black-robed Sourcewalker suddenly let out a laugh. “Arise!”

Boom!

Boom!

Boom!

Light began to shine all around them as power began to circulate through the area. Countless runic lines appeared in the icy earth around them as an enormous formation began to reveal itself. The entire area became blanketed in blurry light; clearly, this was a trapping formation.

“If I had to deal with you anywhere else, it’d probably be quite hard… but this is my turf. Admit defeat, Chaos Primordial.” The black-robed Sourcewalker was extremely self-confident.

“Retreat, Flamewing,” Ning sent mentally. Flamewing immediately flapped its wings and charged back towards Ning.

“Store the realmship into your estate-world, then obey my orders with regards to breaking this formation apart,” Ning sent.

“Alright, Master.” Flamewing was quite unhappy after having been trapped within the opponent’s formation. It didn’t really understand formations, given how low its level of insight was. All it could do was try to overwhelm the formation with raw power! Given that it was strong enough to dominate even Otherverse Lords, ordinary formations were no match for it. However, this was a formation that was controlled by a Sourcewalker that was every bit as strong as Flamewing; overpowering it probably wasn’t an option.

Whoosh. Flamewing put away the realmship. Even though Ning was now within Flamewing’s estate-treasure, his gaze was still able to see past the dimensional barriers and into the world outside. This was primarily because Flamewing was in control of the estate-treasure. It didn’t move to oppose Ning, and so Ning was able to see what was happening outside.

“This trap formation is a bit interesting, but defeating it won’t be hard. Flamewing, given how strong you are, this is actually going to be easy.” Ning felt quite confident. “Obey my commands.”

The Dao of Formations was an incredibly difficult one, but Ning had reached terrifying heights in it. In all the Sixteen Realmverses Alliance, there was probably no one superior to him in this regard! When he had first unlocked the secrets behind the Jadefire Realm’s formation-diagram, he had already reached the Archon level in the Dao of Formations. He had then spent another long period of time studying formations in order to unleash Flamewing, and as a result his insight into the Dao of Formations had deepened even further.

Swish! Flamewing transformed into an arced streak of light, flying through the blurry formation at high speed. It repeatedly changed directions, sometimes choosing to ram through certain points with raw force.

To break the entire formation through raw power was impossible for Flamewing, but Ning’s level of mastery over the Dao of Formations was so high that he was able to find its weak spots with ease. To locate and then break through those weak spots was naturally quite simple.

Boom! Boom! Boom! A number of explosions could be heard in succession. The formation which the black-robed Sourcewalker had spent quite a bit of time setting up was instantly disrupted, and the surrounding area returned to its usual appearance. It was once again possible for everyone to clearly see the vast, icy world around them.

“Why did it break?! Big brother, your formation was so powerful than when I was trapped inside it, I had no idea how I was supposed to escape. How was it breached like that?!” The armored Sourcewalker was rather dazed.

“You idiot. All you know how to do is fight. You know nothing of formations.” The black-robed Sourcewalker stared towards the fleeing Flamewing, his eyes shining. “It was actually able to disrupt my formation in the blink of an eye. There’s no way that Chaos Primordial could’ve accomplished it on its own; those things are legendary for their stupidity. That means that it had to have been one of the two cultivators in that realmship. So one of them is actually a grandmaster in the art of formations!”

……

After breaking through the formation, Flamewing instantly grew excited. It let out an earth-shattering roar, then said: “Hey, Sourcewalker! Wasn’t your formation supposed to be really awesome? Why don’t you activate a few more and let’s see how they do?!”

Formations had to be set up in advance. The black-robed Sourcewalker had detected Ning’s group early on and thus had set up this formation before revealing himself. How could he suddenly manifest another powerful formation out of thin air?

“Gentlemen.” The black-robed Sourcewalker had an excited look in his eyes, and he said with a smile: “Do you think you can escape simply because you breached my formation?”

“Without your formations, do you think you can stop me?” Flamewing howled back, “Be good and hand over the Daomerge Firecloud Flower. Otherwise, I’m going to loot the entire Icewind Sea completely clean.”

“This place is my territory. You should play nice and listen to what I have to say.” A strange, rhomboid-covered globe suddenly flew out from the black-robed Sourcewalker’s forehead and into the air. Boom! A strange power which belonged to the Dao of Space suddenly swept out and covered the entire area, moving at such incredible speeds that it completely covered a trillion kilometers in the blink of an eye.

The entire region covered by this power completely changed. It had transformed into a world of the starry skies, with Flamewing and the two Sourcewalkers both located within it.

“This is a weapon which I acquired from a Sithe who once attacked this place.” The black-robed Sourcewalker’s voice echoed throughout every part of the starry skies.

“Flamewing.” Ning immediately issued an order from within the estate-wrold: “War machines might be powerful, but activating them uses up an enormous amount of energy. Don’t worry about him. You have a virtually indestructible body and limitless energy; focus all of your efforts on tearing through this astral world. Rip it to pieces with your power!”