The moment he crossed the Heavenly Pattern Barrier, Li Tianming felt an incredible force sweep through his entire body, as if he had been caught in a storm. The world whirled madly around him, turning his surroundings into a blur.
“So this is the power people at the vice-potentate’s level wield.” Li Tianming gazed at the power around him, longing written all over his face.
The focus on cultivation, up until Unity, was on beast ki, battle arts and spiritsource abilities. Only at Heavenly Will would one begin to study the mystery of the heavens and earth as part of the cultivation process. At that point, the beastmaster would be the one leading his or her beasts in symbiotic cultivation.
Leading symbiotic cultivation... not many beastmasters in Ignispolis had reached that step. These were probably the only ones who could understand the intricacies of the Heavenly Pattern Barrier — not surprising, since all of them had decades of experience.
With the power of the mysterious barrier, all the disciples participating in the Abyssal Trials were sent into the Azure Domain, where they would be scattered around evenly.
Soon, Li Tianming landed on a stretch of ashen rocky hills, dark clouds and black lightning flickering above him. He wasn’t sure about his exact location in the Azure Domain, unlike the others from Vermilion Bird. This was an advantage the disciples of Vermilion Bird other than Li Tianming had, since everyone else entered the Azure Domain more than once.
The entire Azure Domain corresponded to the ‘Land of Thousand Lakes’, which was north of Ignispolis. Given that Abyssal Battlefield and the continent were meant to be reflections of each other, there were a thousand lakes in the domain as well, which was also how the domain got its name.
Ironically, there was hardly a trace of azure in the domain, since all of the lakes were ink-black. Although lakes dotted the area, its terrain could hardly be called even. Hills and chasms peppered the place, every single one of them inhabited by wildbeasts.
The concentration of spiritual energy in the battlefield was no less than that of the continent, just that it was far more violent, making it unsuitable for prolonged cultivation. In the same vein, the spiritual energy here had given birth to all kinds of spirit herbs, ores and hazards.
As such, the treasures buried in the Abyssal Battlefield was another point of conflict between the three nations on the peninsula. Many wars had actually taken place in the Abyssal Battlefield, and more than half of Lightning Manor's Tempest Regiment was actually stationed on Vermilion Bird’s border within the battlefield. Simply put, there were actually two different regions in Vermilion Bird, the one in the continent and the one here.
Compared to Flameyellow Continent, all kinds of spirit hazards thrived in the Abyssal Battlefield, adding another layer of danger to it. The black lightning dancing in the skies was actually one such spirit hazard, with red heavenly patterns running through the middle of the clouds.
Li Tianming knew that from that moment on, there would be no rules, no hints, and no directions. The Abyssal Trials had officially started, and from now on there would only be blood and battle!
“Big brother, would you believe me if I said I found a trace of manna?” As soon as they landed, Jiang Feiling spoke in her spiritual form.
Was it a jackpot for them? Li Tianming had seen her manna radar at work before. Even though Jiang Feiling had no lifebound beast and could not cultivate, Li Tianming had faith in her odd abilities.
“I don’t believe you, unless you give me a kiss on the cheek,” Li Tianming teased.
“What a douche,” the little chick cursed, flying out of its lifebound space.
The Abyssal Battlefield was a broad and open space. Within the continent, cities and buildings were commonplace, which necessitated restrictions on the manifestation of lifebound beasts. Therefore, lifebound beasts were accustomed to cultivating in their lifebound space most of the time. However, there were no such restrictions in the Abyssal Battlefield, and Ying Huo could fly all it wanted here.
Jiang Feiling chuckled. “Nah, it’s not like the manna is any use to me. Since it is for Ying Huo, why not let Ying Huo kiss you instead?”
“That’s right, big brother Tianming, let me just give you a good, hard peck on your cheek!” the little chick hissed menacingly.
With a straight face, Li Tianming shook his head. “No, it’s fine. I’ll naturally believe Ling’er. How can I not trust the beautiful telepathic communication between the two of us?”
With them around, it was going to be an enjoyable trip. The only thing that could distract him from his good mood was the thought that Mu Qingqing was somewhere in this Azure Domain.
Li Tianming’s eyes flashed at that thought. If she showed up, he would show no mercy. No matter how much he laughed right now, Li Tianming was the type that could slip into a murderous mood as and when needed.
“Which direction is it?”
Jiang Feiling had sensed manna the moment they entered, and that was enough for Li Tianming to believe that the Azure Domain was a place of fortune for him.
They walked for over ten miles in that direction till they reached a cliff, where all they saw beyond there were black fog and all kinds of venomous creatures.
An abyss looked back up at them as they stared down the cliff. The sounds of wildbeasts screaming and roaring seemed like it would never abate. Wildbeasts would only make noises when they were in desperate situations, since doing so would run the risk of attracting predators. That went to show that apart from the beastmasters hunting for wildbeasts, only the strongest wildbeasts would survive in this land!
The Abyssal Battlefield was packed with all kinds of dangerous wildbeasts, and Mu Yang had mentioned that beasts capable of rivalling even him could appear. It was definitely not a place where Li Tianming could let his guard down.
“Are you sure it’s within this abyss?” Li Tianming frowned, his instincts warning him about the danger lurking in the gaping dark maw. Forget the wildbeasts — the insects he spotted were already scary enough.
“I’m pretty sure, I can sense it getting closer to us.” Jiang Feiling replied, confidence in her words.
“Wow, Ling’er, it’s like you have a dog's nose,” Ying Huo praised.
“Do you not know how to talk to girls? Little wonder you have no girlfriend...” Li Tianming rolled his eyes.
“Well, why don’t you give it a go.”
“Watch and learn: Ling’er must be the daughter of God, since only she can sense the manna that God blessed us with.” Li Tianming said with a straight face.
The little chick stared on, speechless, before begrudgingly admitting that Li Tianming had done a much better job.
According to the legends of Flameyellow Continent, all creation had come into being due to an almighty creator, who resided in the highest of heavens, the Firmament. His existence remained an enigma, a myth that many simply believed in. As for manna, no one could explain how they formed in the first place, so people just assumed that they were a blessing from God.
Clearly pleased by the compliments, Jiang Feiling said, “Big brother, this is something that I have never sensed before. If my guess is correct, this isn’t just any normal manna, but royal manna.”
“What?” Li Tianming was shocked. The most common manna was already worth a fortune, and royal manna would be worth at least thirty times the net worth of Flamehaven. But there was a reason for its high price.
Royal manna was a treasure that could evolve a beast to seven-stars! With that, Li Tianming could reach the level of the Heavenly Septuplets! It was something so desirable that Mu Yang and even the Vermilion Bird King would covet it. That one manna was enough to guarantee the superiority of their descendants’ talent!
History had proven that seven-star royal beasts were the basic requirement to exceed Unity and enter Heavenly Will — the top cultivators within the borders of Vermilion Bird. In fact, for people like Wei Tianxiong and Wei Zikun, their lifebound beasts were all seven-star beasts that had reached their prime. And, spoken of in whispers, was profound manna, an item that stood head and shoulders above royal manna. What that exactly did was anyone’s guess, but its mere existence would shake the nation.
The first thing they entered the Abyssal Battlefield, and Jiang Feiling already found royal manna? Li Tianming felt like he really struck the jackpot, not because of the manna but because of Jiang Feiling. With that ‘dog’s nose’ of hers, treasures would line up for them.
In fact, Jiang Feiling was the greatest treasure he could ask for. Not only did she have the ten abilities sealed within her fingernails, the ‘treasure radar’ she had was an ability unlike any other.
Li Tianming felt like he could wake up laughing even in his dreams. Not only did he have the ten Primordial Chaos Beasts as his own lifebound beast, but the number one beauty of Vermilion Bird, with all kinds of unique abilities, was also by his side. Surely no one could stop him from now on!
“Big brother, don’t be that happy. It’s just my guess, and it’s not impossible that there’s not even any manna there…” Jiang Feiling said softly.
“Whether there is or not, we’ll find out for ourselves,” Li Tianming replied.
“Aren’t you afraid of the wildbeasts down there?”
“No worries, Ying Huo can take the lead. If there’s any danger, it can help us distract the wildbeasts while we escape, and I will make sure nothing can harm Ling’er. We just need to make sure we can run faster than Ying Huo.”
“...” The little chick’s eyes twitched with disbelief.
“But that’s so sad for big brother Ying Huo.” Jiang Feiling smiled.
“Not my fault it’s still single.”
“...” It was super effective! Ying Huo fainted!
But of course, that was just a joke. If a fight really broke out, Li Tianming would naturally be the one at the front. With the help of Ling’er’s attachment, Li Tianming was more suited for direct confrontation, while Ying Huo specialised in ambushes and flanks.
Besides, if it was really a royal manna, Li Tianming would be extra cautious.
With a simple effort, the Celestial Wings and the Temporal Field activated. While the Celestial Wings were initially quite bright, Jiang Feiling could in fact adjust its appearance, and they eventually turned transparent. In the dark, foggy abyss, the wings on his back were impossible to notice.
The corresponding place in the continent was called ‘Chasm of Flora’.
Even if one stretched the definition of ‘scary’ to titanic proportions, it would be hard-pressed to describe the Chasm of Flora as such. It was a popular tourist location where the citizens of Ignispolis could picnic away with scenic views of waterfalls and forests.
However, inside the Abyssal Battlefield, this chasm looked like a living hell.