All eyes were locked onto the pill bottle as it disappeared into the depths. Without the slightest hesitation, the entire group instantly transformed into beams of light that shot after it.
“I’m definitely going to earn the right to reach Foundation Establishment!”
“I failed once, but I’m not going to fail again. I'm going to reach Foundation Establishment!”
“We’re allowed to kill people in this trial by fire, so anybody who tries to stop me from reaching Foundation Establishment will die!”
Within the blink of an eye, all of the disciples disappeared into the pit, eyes bloodshot, ready to fight to the death.
Bai Xiaochun was in the group, his eyes glued to the falling pill bottle. Once inside the pit, the blood qi inside of him surged, and he picked up speed. Almost instantly, he was in the front of the pack, along with three other disciples. Moments later, they had already reached the location of the pill bottle.
Of course, Bai Xiaochun still couldn’t use his Foundation Establishment cultivation base. If he did, a mere thought on his part could crush everyone else. But in the Blood Stream Sect, he had learned to exercise the utmost caution at all times, so he only used the power of the Qi Condensation stage. He also avoided using any of his magical techniques, to further avoid poking any holes in his disguise.
In fact, due to his cultivation of the Undying Heavenly King, he had plenty of blood qi inside of him, making him seem no different from any of the other disciples.
Bai Xiaochun roared as he waved his right hand, unleashing blood qi in a powerful attack that spread out in all directions. The other three disciples in the area were forced to defend themselves, and as a result, slowed down significantly.
“You got some good fortune in the Foundation Establishment Holy Land and hid it from us, didn’t you!? You didn’t reach Earthstring Foundation Establishment, but you still have power that exceeds the tenth level of Qi Condensation!”
Seeing that Nightcrypt hadn’t slowed down at all, the other three immediately joined forces to attack him. The disciples further back didn’t seem to have expected this to happen, and yet weren’t surprised.
Zhao Wuchang’s eyes flashed as he came to the same conclusion as the other disciples, that Nightcrypt had come across some good fortune that gave him access to greater power than before.
Even as Bai Xiaochun sped toward the pill bottle, he forced some blood to ooze out his mouth to make it looked like he was injured. At the same time, he put a crazed expression on his face. With one final burst, he closed the distance and grabbed the pill bottle. Any of the other disciples in this situation would have broken the bottle open, taken a few pills, then thrown the other ones off to the side to distract the rest of the disciples.
In fact, that was what all of the other disciples assumed would happen.
Even the four grand elders up on the Precipice of Never-Ending Blood also expected the same outcome. None of them were at all surprised to see Bai Xiaochun break ahead of the pack and grab the bottle. After all, most disciples of the Blood Stream Sect had various trump cards to call upon, so a burst of speed was nothing beyond expectation.
As for the grand elder from Corpse Peak, he had met Nightcrypt before, and currently, his eyes shone with admiration. Of course, were it not for the events of a few months before, he wouldn’t have paid much attention to Bai Xiaochun.
However, what happened next left all four grand elders completely shocked.
Instead of breaking the pill bottle open, Bai Xiaochun picked up speed and headed further into the depths of the pit.
“What are you doing, Nightcrypt?!?!”
“Dammit! I can’t believe he’s doing this!!”
“Nightcrypt, are you looking to die?!?!” Rumbling sounds could be heard as the enraged crowd chased Bai Xiaochun down into the depths.
Even as the other disciples’ killing intent soared, the four grand elders on the Precipice of Never-Ending Blood exchanged surprised looks. Then, their eyes began to gleam with keen interest.
“He's hogging the pills?” said the grand elder of Lesser Marsh Peak, a burly man with a booming voice. His expression was rather ferocious, and yet his eyes gleamed with admiration. “How bold! That’s just the type of personality Blood Stream Sect disciples should have. I never paid much attention to this kid before. What a pity he didn’t reach Earthstring Foundation Establishment, otherwise he would have become a major Chosen!”
Song Junwan covered her mouth as she laughed, suddenly much more deeply impressed by Nightcrypt. “Very interesting. Presumably, many of that group of thirty would love to hog the pills, but he’s the first one to actually attempt to pull it off!”
The grand elder from Nameless Peak, the dwarf, chuckled darkly. “He's called Nightcrypt, right? What a good name, and what potential in a disciple. If he really manages to cut off the Foundation Establishment path for the rest of them, then I definitely want him for Nameless Peak.”
The grand elder from Corpse Peak laughed heartily. “I remember this kid. He's a pure genius when it comes to refining corpses!”
He completely approved of Bai Xiaochun’s actions.
After the disciples disappeared into the depths, everyone turned to leave.
“I wonder if that hogger Nightcrypt will still be alive a month from now.”
“Hey, I already said that if he reaches Foundation Establishment, I want him for Nameless Peak!” Laughing and chatting, the four grand elders left.
Down in the pit, Bai Xiaochun was racing along at top speed, intentionally causing blood to spray out of his mouth every once in awhile to remind everyone that he was injured. However, he didn’t slow down even a bit. Soon he was down near the bottom of the pit, and upon looking around, he found that it really was like a tiny little world. There were mountains rising up in all directions, all of which were covered with blood-colored vegetation.
Off in the distance were some volcanoes that radiated intense heat and powerful rumbling noises.
Furthermore, Bai Xiaochun could sense numerous dangerous and brutal auras rising up from various locations.
Even as he hovered there feeling proud of himself, the other disciples began to arrive, bursting with murderous auras.
“You want to fight me over these Foundation Establishment Pills?” he shouted. “Dream on!”
“Nightcrypt, it’s not right to be so vicious! You can’t cut off our path to Foundation Establishment!”
“How dare you do such a thing. You’re dead!”
“Humph! Offending this many people has earned you a death sentence! And don’t even think about trying to hole up somewhere and reach Foundation Establishment! This place isn’t very big, and I’ve been here before, so I can definitely track you down!”
Bai Xiaochun didn’t even look at them. As numerous magical techniques rumbled through the air toward him, he sped toward the region with the volcanoes. The Pit of Never-Ending Blood wasn’t just used for Foundation Establishment trials by fire. Disciples would also come here on missions to harvest four-leaf clovers.
However, when going out on missions, the sect would make sure that the area wasn’t too dangerous. As long as one was careful, one wouldn’t face any mortal danger. In fact, imposter Nightcrypt had even come here, and was relatively familiar with the area.
“The four-leaf clovers are in the volcano region....” Eyes glittering, Bai Xiaochun sped toward the nearest volcano and vanished into a tunnel without even pausing.
Even as he did, the other disciples closed in, enraged, roiling with murderous auras as they chased after him.
Bai Xiaochun picked up speed as he flew through the countless passages and tunnels that riddled the ground underneath the volcano region. The area was almost like a huge maze.
Because of that, none of the pursuers had any idea where exactly he was, which enraged them even more.Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translator: Deathblade. Chinese language consultant: ASI a.k.a. Beerblade. Editor: GNE. Memes: Logan. Meme archives: Tocsin. Transcendent Patrons: Daoist Elder N, BLE, ttre208
This chapter is a bit short, coming in at about 1,300 words instead of the usual 2,000.
I'm planning to get up a bit early tomorrow to participate in a podcast recording regarding Heroes Shed No Tears, an old kung movie based on one of the earlier novels that I translated. Heroes Shed No Tears is not a web novel, it's a classic wuxia story written by one of the top most famous traditional wuxia authors, Gu Long. You can check out my translation here if you haven't read it. It's a pretty short read, but has a very complicated plot, and features one of the greatest genius villains of all time in wuxia stories. Of the handful of shorter novels I translated before getting into long-form web novels, it was my favorite. In the podcast, we will be discussing both the movie and the novel, and if you're a fast reader, you have plenty of time to finish my translation before the podcast is released sometime tomorrow!