“Right on!” The giant yellow bear excitedly spun around, instantly causing them to teleport elsewhere in the estate.
Within the Starseizing Manor.
Ji Ning, the giant yellow bear, Redsnow, Primelight, Snow Scorpion, and the others all appeared within the main hall.
“The rest of you can wait here.” The giant yellow bear turned to look towards Redsnow and the others. “The secret treasure vault is only accessible to the new Manorlord.”
“Alright.” Redsnow nodded.
“Unlike you, you big bear, the rest of us are quite patient. Look at how eager you are!” Primelight shook his head and snickered.
The giant bear stared at him. “Are things the same for you and me? I’ve been guarding this place for countless eons now. It wasn’t so bad before, but now that I know that Ji Ning has made his breakthrough and become the new Manorlord, of course I’m going to be unable to control my curiosity. I’m not to blame.”
“Enough, big bear. Lead the way,” Ning said.
“Come with me.” The giant yellow bear led the way, and Ning followed him.
The bear and the man walked through the hallways of the underwater estate. In truth, the estate was quite vast; this was the place where Daoist Threelives and his countless Fiendgod minions had lived, after all.
“Ji Ning, you have now become an Empyrean God and a True Immortal, you can completely bind the Starseizing Manor,” the giant bear said.
“Right. Later, I’ll bind it completely.” Ning nodded. He was in no rush. The Starseizing Manor was an estate-type treasure which held the Starseizer world within it. Now that he had become an Empyrean God, all he had to do was wait for Daofather Crimsonbright to send the necessary Immortal pills to him. He would soon be able to reach the Ninth Cycle of the [Eight-Nine Arcane Art], at which point in time his body would be comparable to a top-grade Pure Yang treasure. Even if he encountered any danger, there would be no need for him to hide within the estate.
Even if he did need to hide…Ning had collected Protocosmic spirit-treasures during the Realmwar. The underwater estate was now much less important to him than it had been in the past. However, it still held unique importance for him; when he had been very young, it had been extremely helpful to him in his growth.
They flew past a curtain of water and arrived at a blurry spatial corridor. Ning and the giant bear walked through the corridor, moving towards a place which Ning had never been before.
“Eh?” Ning saw that at the end of this spatial corridor, there was a blurry barrier of flowing light.
“This is the protective formation which Master left behind,” the giant yellow bear said, pointing at the barrier. “Long ago, Master said that only the new Manorlord would be able to open it.”
“Oh?” As Ning walked forward, he sent his coresense forward to investigate it. Although he wasn’t exactly an elite formations expert, he still knew a good amount regarding the art of formations.
“Open up.” After analyzing it for a moment, Ning suddenly reached out with his palm. The divine Starseizing Tattoo appeared within it, and he slapped his palm down against the barrier. Light flowed atop the barrier as a rune that was extremely similar to the Starseizing Tattoo appeared atop it.
Ning’s palm transformed to become three hundred meters in size as he slammed it down upon the barrier…but the only result was that the shockwave forced him back three steps.
“It didn’t open?” The giant yellow bear was puzzled.
“Not right now.” Ning stared at the light barrier, then shook his head. “Let’s go back for now.”
“Why can’t you open it? Master said that the new Manorlord would be able to open it,” the giant yellow bear said frantically.
Ning laughed. “I discovered just now that this barrier comes from the exact type of energy as the Starseizing Tattoo. The only thing that can open it is the Starseizing Tattoo, but when I tried just now, I discovered that because my own tattoo isn’t complete enough or strong enough. I imagine that only after reaching the Fifth Cycle can one open this barrier. But of course, there’s another method; to rely on overwhelming power to force it open! Although my master Daoist Threelives was quite formidable, countless eons have passed since he set up the formation. If I rammed against the formation he left behind ten or so times, I’d probably be able to break through it, but if I did that…the treasures which Master left behind might be teleported away through some other mechanism.”
“Right. You can’t brute force it.” The giant yellow bar nodded hurriedly.
This was no joke. It was entirely possible that there was a secondary mechanism within that would teleport the treasures away into the Void of space or into some extremely dangerous regions once the formation was broken through by brute force. How hard would it be to locate the treasures once they were lost?
In fact, counter-attack formations might appear as well.
“Let’s go.” Ning turned and left. “I need to first train my [Starseizing Hand] to the Fifth Cycle.”
Ning first went to the main hall of the Starseizing Manor to meet with Redsnow, Primelight, and the rest. They were all eager to find out what relics Daoist Threelives had left behind…but alas, Ning had been unable to actually break through the formation for now. The seven of them had no choice but to return to the Starseizer world for now.
Within the Treasures Hall.
“All of the treasures of the Treasures Hall are here.” The giant yellow bear pointed towards the ceiling as he handed Ning a book. “This book has a record of all the Immortal-ranked and Pure Yang treasures.”
Ning nodded and accepted the book.
“There’s actually a total of twenty-eight Pure Yang treasures.” Ning couldn’t help but sigh in amazement. “And that’s in addition to the Sole-Ki Nine Elements Pearls and the Ananda World-Swords. All of the Pure Yang treasures that Master left behind are fine specimens.”
Amongst the best Pure Yang treasures, there were a few that were especially powerful. All of them were set treasures, and the very best ones had their own specialties; it was hard to say which was the definitive best.
The ‘Eight Fires Qiankun World’, for example, had been forged by Elder God Zhurong, who had already fallen during the war that ended the Primordial Era. It had been forged with incomparably precious treasures into the form of eight lotus petals. When the eight lotus petals completely bloomed, they could unleash eight powerful streaks of truefire! It must be understood that the entire Three Realms only contained nine types of truefire, but this Eight Fires Qiankun World included eight of them!
In addition, Elder God Zhurong had fused some marvelous formations into this treasure of his. Once all eight types of truefire were merged together into one, they would possess utterly earth-shattering destructive power.
Pure Yang True Immortals would most likely only be able to flee in the face of this power. Only Empyrean Gods with powerful divine bodies would dare to fight it head-on. Most importantly of all…this was an large-scale area attack that was the size of a world. It could absolutely destroy everything within its range! Thus, the Eight Fires Qiankun World, despite ‘merely’ being a single top-grade Pure Yang treasure, was worth more than a hundred ‘ordinary’ top-grade Pure Yang treasures!
There was also the ‘Grand Bloodshadow Formation of the Heavens’. It was composed of a total of ninety-nine top-grade Pure Yang treasures, and once they joined together to form ninety-nine bloodshadow clones, they would have similarly astonishingly might.
“Alas, there are no sword-formations, which is what I need.” Ning shook his head. Although there were flying swords amongst the treasures, Ning need a total of more than seven hundred Pure Yang flying swords. The vault which Daoist Threelives had left behind simply didn’t include that many items.
The finest sets of top-grade Pure Yang treasures which Daoist Threelives had stored in his vault were some of the finest treasures of the Three Realms, capable of allowing any Empyrean God or True Immortal to instantly become far more powerful. Unfortunately…Ji Ning was no ordinary Empyrean God or True Immortal. He had reached the fourth stage of heartforce already. Once he mastered the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand] and the Ninth Cycle of the [Eight-Nine Arcane Art], he was already a supreme figure amongst his peers. The amount of benefit these treasures would bring him was very limited.
He was simply too powerful already. He didn’t need too much outside support.
Or, to put it a different way…
The outside support he needed had to be of a tremendously powerful level.
Ning would naturally be willing to risk his very life to acquire a Chaos treasure, but those were far too precious and rare. Not even most Daofathers or True Gods were in possession of one! One of the reasons why Daoist Threelives had been so powerful was precisely because once his [Starseizing Hand] reached the Sixth Cycle, his hands had become as powerful as Chaos treasures!
Chaos treasures…only the primordial chaos could give birth to treasures of such astonishing, heaven-shaking power.
Ning left the Starseizing Manor to visit his master, Subhuti.
Within Subhuti’s Daoist monastery.
“Master,” Ning called out respectfully.
“What is it?” Subhuti looked towards Ning.
“Your disciple wishes to train in the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand], but needs some materials to do so. These materials are very hard to gather. Your disciple is willing to exchange treasures for them with you, Master,” Ji Ning said. The Xia Emperor had once wanted to come up with enough treasures for Ning to train to the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand], but…not even most True Gods or Daofathers were in possession of those treasures. Most likely, they would have to seek out friends and gather the items from many places.
But of course, Ji Ning naturally had sufficient treasures to engage in the necessary trading.
During the Realmwar alone, Ning had acquired multiple Pure Yang treasures and two Protocosmic spirit-treasures. However, those Pure Yang treasures were not part of a set. Daoist Threelives had collected multiple sets of top-grade treasures, which was exceedingly rare. The total number of treasures, however, was enough to trade for the necessary materials for him to reach the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand].
As for the likes of the Eight Fires Qiankun World or the Grand Bloodshadow Formation of the Heavens? Any single one of those sets would be enough to trade for the necessary materials.
“As your master, I have yet to give you any gifts for your breakthrough into the Empyrean God level.” Subhuti shook his head. “You can consider the materials needed to reach the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand] as a gift from me. However, although I’m able to give you the materials needed for the Fifth Cycle…I’m not able to give you the materials you will need for the Sixth Cycle.”
“Your disciple understands.” Ning nodded.
Almost all the items that could be used for him to cultivate his hands to the Chaos treasure level were only locatable within the primordial chaos, and extremely rare as well.
In the past, Daoist Threelives had been lucky enough to encounter a piece of golden starstone in the primordial chaos. After analyzing the starstone for countless years, he came up with a way to use the starstone, along with many other materials he had located within the primordial chaos, to develop the Sixth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand]. Treasures like that golden starstone, however, were incredibly rare. Per what Daoist Threelives had said back then, Daoist Three Purities had also encountered a piece of golden starstone, and had eventually used it to create the Immortal Slaying Sword’s sword-diagram.
“Tell which materials you need,” Subhuti said.
“Yes.” Ning began to list them out one by one.
Subhuti raised an eyebrow. Smiling, he said, “This is actually rather difficult. I’ll need to go find some of my old friends to acquire them. Wait a bit.” Subhuti closed his eyes and sat there quietly for a few moments. A short while later, a spatial vortex appeared next to him and an old man dressed in Daoist robes appeared within it. The old man handed Subhuti a brocade sack, then disappeared.
Ning understood that the ‘old man’ was actually a created incarnation of his master.
“It’s all here.” A brocade sack and a gourd appeared within Subhuti’s hands. “This sack has the materials you need, while the gourd contains the Great Firmament Immortal pills from Daofather Crimsonbright. There are more than enough pills for you to train to the Ninth Cycle of the [Eight-Nine Arcane Art].”
As he spoke he waved his hand, causing the brocade sack and the gourd to float towards Ji Ning.
Ning accepted the items. “Thank you, Master.” His heart was filled with delight.
After training to reach the Fifth Cycle of the [Starseizing Hand], he would be able to acquire the relics left behind by Daoist Threelives. And, even more importantly, his hands would become comparable to top-grade Protocosmic spirit-treasures in might! Top-grade Protocosmic treasures…they were second only to Chaos treasures. In addition, once Ning used [Three Heads, Six Arms], he would essentially have access to the equivalent of six top-grade Protocosmic weapons.
Protocosmic spirit-treasures weren’t rare, as Ning had quite a few, as did the Xia Emperor. But top-grade Protocosmic spirit-treasures…Ning hadn’t even acquired a single one thus far!
“What are you planning to do next?” Subhuti said, looking at Ning.
Ning replied respectfully, “Your disciple intends to roam the Three Realms, tempering my Dao-heart in the mortal dust and meditating on my sword-arts.”
If his heartforce could make yet another breakthrough to the fifth stage…
Although thus far, Houyi had been the only one capable of it, making his own chances quite low…if he really did succeed, then he would become supremely powerful even amongst True Gods and Daofathers. Ning had a feeling that the fifth stage of heartforce could only be found within the red dust of the mortal world.
This was one of the reasons why Eastbreak and many of the others who had reached the fourth stage of heartforce often spent most of their time roaming the Three Realms.
Heartforce wasn’t something that could be forced. Thus, Ning would still spend most of his time tempering his sword-arts.
“Also, I’d like to ask you for some help, Master,” Ning said respectfully.
“Help?” Subhuti looked at Ning.
Ning nodded. “The storm is now upon us, and the wars between us and the Seamless Gate are unceasing. I want to ask you, Master, to help me seek out opportunities to fight them. Alternately, give me targets to attack. I’ll wipe some of the Seamless Gate’s headquarters and lairs.”
“Targets to attack?” Subhuti was surprised. “That’ll make the Seamless Gate go berserk.”
The Seamless Gate and the Nuwa Alliance were like two massive armies that were facing each other.
The Nuwa Alliance had its major worlds, while the Seamless Gate has major worlds of its own. Both sides would assault each other while defending against enemy assaults.
There were some extremely formidable Empyrean Gods and True Immortals in the Three Realms, but they would at most appear during a Realmwar. Outside of a Realmwar, they wouldn’t dare launch an assault against a headquarters of the Seamless Gate.
“If you launch a direct assault against one of their headquarters…although I can’t sense any danger at present, once you attack they might send their full force against you,” Subhuti said worriedly. “This is going to be extremely risky. To launch sneak attacks without an army supporting you…it will be very, very risky. Even if you succeed, you’ll only succeed once or twice. Those successes will enrage the Seamless Gate, and they will come up with ways to set traps for you. If you repeatedly attack them and ambush them, you’ll probably end up being trapped and ambushed by them instead.”
Ning nodded. “I understand. That’s exactly what I want, for them to be enraged, for them to go berserk. The more berserk they become, the more I will attack them and the more of them I will kill.”
“Do you have to do this?” Subhuti looked at Ning. He didn’t understand. The more powerful one was, the more one would understand how important it was to protect one’s self during a war.
Launching sneak attacks…yes, the chances of success would be very high, but without an army supporting you, if you failed, you would become easily entrapped and perhaps even lose your life. Even if you succeeded, you would become a top-priority target of the Seamless Gate!
“I have to.” Ning nodded.
“You are now quite formidable, and you are capable of commanding a Heaven Punisher. The Seamless Gate will have to pay an enormous price to deal with you. Thus, they’ll treat you exactly the way they do the likes of Lu Dongbin. They won’t actively act against you, as you have already reached a high level of power. The reason why they wanted to kill you earlier was because you were weak, because you hadn’t grown up yet,” Subhuti said.
You had to nip potential threats in the bud. Once they actually became serious threats, however…by then, the Seamless Gate wouldn’t really be willing to pay the enormous price necessary to get rid of them.
“Please help me, Master,” Ning said respectfully. Where were the headquarters of the Seamless Gate? Which ones were the best to assault? Which ones should be left untouched? Patriarch Subhuti would be thousands of times better than him in making these decisions.
“Can you tell me the reason?” Subhuti looked at Ning.
“I am going to rescue Yu Wei,” Ning said.
“Rescue? She’s not dead?” Subhuti was shocked. “She isn’t dead…how do you know this?”
Ning nodded. “She’s not dead. Her soul is currently suffering unspeakable torments at the hands of the Godking within his Infinity Hells. The reason I know this is because prior to this, the Godking tried to force me to join him. He told me that if I didn’t join him, he would have her suffer endless torment.”
Subhuti instantly understood.
He couldn’t help but look carefully at this disciple of his. He could completely imagine how agonizing this choice had to be for him. And yet…despite feeling such despair, his disciple had actually been able to break through in power and reverse the course of an entire Realmwar.
“I am going to rescue her, and this is the only method available to me,” Ning said. “I’m going to kill them. Kill, kill, kill them! Kill them until they are enraged. If they send one person to deal with me, I’ll kill one; if they send ten, I’ll kill the entire group. I’ll kill them until they rage turns to fear, until their fear turns to regret, until they finally come to make peace with me! But I’ll only stop my slaughter once they release her.”
“I have to slaughter them until they truly regret it. Only then would they be willing to release her.” Ning looked at Subhuti. “This is the only way I can rescue her. Please help me, Master.”