Whoosh! Whoosh! Whoosh! A series of white-robed figures flew through the region of primordial chaos, entering the vast prisonworld. A total of sixteen white-robed figures levitated in midair. All eighteen of Ning’s clones had entered the prisonworld now.
“Before I go to Undermoon Lake, I need to complete certain careful preparations.” Fifteen of the sixteen white-robed youths instantly vanished, leaving behind only the one with the Ninehorn Lightning Serpent.
Whoosh. An enormous black lightning serpent streaked through the skies, rapidly flying off into the distance.
Although Ning had acquired quite a few treasures thanks to his many battles against the Seamless Gate, that amount couldn’t come close to comparing to the things he had gained from this prisonworld. Even the prisonworld’s Empyrean Gods and Celestial Immortals had carried extremely rare and valuable treasures with him, thanks to the fact that all of them had extraordinary backgrounds. As for the True Gods and True Immortals, they were equivalent to the Daofathers of the Three Realms, and so their treasures were even more shocking.
“Undermoon Lake is too mysterious a place. To this very day, only Buddha Jueming managed to survive it and emerge from it. It’s very possible that this clone of mine will die inside. I need to bring some good treasures with me, but I can’t take the very best ones,” Ning mused to himself.
Thus far, Ning had already disposed of Empress Jin, True God Skysplitter, and three other True Gods and True Immortals. These were all figures that were comparable to Daofathers! Every single one of them possessed treasures that were far better than Ning’s Voidboat and Darknorth swords. Although most weren’t a good fit for Ning, there were some that were.
True God Skysplitter, for example. After he self-detonated and died, he had left behind a total of nine divine swords. Each of them were Protocosmic spirit-treasures, and they formed a complete set! This set of swords alone was enough to make the True Gods and Daofathers of the Three Realms turn glaze-eyed with lust.
There was no way Ning would be willing to take them into Undermoon Lake. Even in the prisonworld, only a few True Gods and True Immortals specialized in the sword. It was entirely possible that after sweeping through the entire prisonworld, he still wouldn’t be able to find a better set of swords.
“My true body has eighteen clones. I’ll send two of them into Undermoon Lake; sending an extra clone will give me an extra chance for success.” Ning made up his mind.
The two clone he had sent naturally didn’t include the clone that possessed the Ninehorn Lightning Serpent.
Of the eighteen clones, just a single one was in possession of a Ninehorn Lightning Serpent. These serpents were far too hard to come by; if he ended up losing it within Undermoon Lake, he would feel endless regret.
“I’ll take these treasures with me.” Ning finished selecting his treasures.
First, he chose a set of 729 top-grade Pure Yang flying swords which he would use for the [Greater Thousand Swords] formation. He had acquired 720 of these swords from the first Celestial Immortal he had met in the prisonworld, Liangqiu. There weren’t many Empyrean Gods or True Immortals in the Three Realms who could afford to be spend so much on swords. This set would allow him to launch distant attacks.
Next, he chose a set of twelve swords that were well-suited for close combat. All of them were also top-grade Pure Yang swords.
After that, he selected a Protocosmic spirit-treasure meant for fleeing, the ‘Ruyi Soulsnake Shuttle’ [1. Ruyi is a very difficult to translate term which basically means, ‘as one wills’; it suggests that it can transform free in size and shape, or that it will allow him to go where he desires.]. Ning actually had several Protocosmic treasures of this type, having acquired three from the True Gods and True Immortals of the prisonworld and a few from the Seamless Gate.
Naturally, he also brought along some Ninefire Lava and other necessary treasures such as spirit pills. No one knew how long he would be trapped there, after all.
Ning brought along fifty thousand kilograms of Ninefire Lava. Supposedly, Undermoon Lake had Iceheart Pith inside; he would absolutely be able to refine and upgrade his golden pellet Jindan with Undermoon Lake.
After completing his preparations, the white-robed Ning boarded his Ruyi Soulsnake Shuttle and began to travel towards Undermoon Lake.
The Three Realms. Sword Immortal world. The thatched cottage in front of the Five Treasured Peaks.
The black-robed Ning was seated in the lotus position within the cottage. Since his true bodies were going to hide for now, it was time for the Primaltwin Ning to take the lead. It was now the Primaltwin which carried the Starseizing Manor with it. Given how strong the Primaltwin was, it was also capable of joining together into the Rahu Formation as it pleased.
An enormous star hung there in the primordial chaos, emanating a gentle aura of light that shone down upon the chaos around it.
This star was very similar to the Lunar Star. Because the Lunar Star was located in the Void outside the Three Realms, there was no chaos blocking its light, allowing it to shine down upon the entire Three Realms. Although the star in front of Ning was very similar to the Lunar Star, it wasn’t particularly famous. The countless ordinary denizens of the Three Realms, at least, had no idea of its existence.
Seated within his Ruyi Soulsnake Shuttle, the white-robed youth stared off into the distance.
An utterly titanic lake of water hung there in the middle of the primordial chaos. It was so vast, even Ning’s heartforce couldn’t cover it all. The surface of this endless lake of water was extremely calm and tranquil, making it as flat and smooth as a mirror. It reflected the image of the enormous nearby star, which appeared within it like the reflection of the moon. It truly was absolutely mesmerizing.
“Undermoon Lake truly is an odd place. One has to be an Empyrean God to enter it; anyone else, including True Gods and Daofathers, are completely unable to pass through it. If they try to force their way into the lake, the waters of the lake will squeeze and compress around them, preventing them from entering the world within.”
Ning didn’t hesitate. “Time to go in.”
Ning’s Ruyi Soulsnake Shuttle swooped into the water. Plop! Water sprayed upwards from the point of impact as Ning and the shuttle both completely disappeared.
In the instant that he entered Undermoon Lake, Ning felt a strange ripple of energy surround him. And then, spacetime distorted and changed. This was a subtle transformation that was filled with the faint aura of primordial chaos. Given Ning’s heartforce abilities, even when Patriarch Subhuti used a spacetime-distorting technique he would still be able to see and potentially evade it, but this spacetime distortion came naturally, not revealing any flaws or traces at all.
Ning fell down from the skies. As soon as he landed, he saw that he was standing upon a piece of scorched rock that was three hundred meters long.
“This place is…?” Ning put away the shuttle, scanning his surroundings.
He was surrounded by a seemingly endless sea. Its waves continuously washed across the scorched stone.
A bright moon hung high in the sky, its cold and clear moonlight shining down upon the entire sea.
“This…” Ning stared at this in astonishment. Ahead of him was a floating wooden bridge. At one end of the bridge was this scorched stone he was standing upon, while the other end stretched far off into the horizon, where sea met sky. Not even Ning could see to the end of the bridge with his eyes alone.
“How long is this floating bridge?” Ning was speechless. He immediately sent out his heartforce to take a look. Ning had already grown accustomed to using heartforce in dangerous areas, because it was even more unfathomable and mysterious than coresense. True Gods and Daofathers who were weaker than him in heartforce wouldn’t even notice him scanning them. But of course, they in turn would be able to scan him with coresense without him noticing.
“Eh? My heartforce…?” Ning’s heart clenched. He had clearly spread out his heartforce, but he wasn’t able to find anything at all.
“Coresense.” Ning immediately sent out his coresense to investigate as well, but as he had expected, even coresense was unable to detect a thing.
Ning’s face changed. Very, very few in the Three Realms were capable of blocking out coresense and heartforce.
“That bright moon in the skies…where is that moon from?” Ning raised his head to stare at the moon. “Can it be the star outside this world?”
Swoosh! Ning soared into the skies, flying higher and higher. He flew for hundreds of thousands of kilometers before, with a thud, he rammed into an invisible barrier. A series of concentric ripples spread out from the part of the barrier which Ning struck. As for the bright moon, it was still far, far above him in the depths of the sky. There was no way to move any closer to it at all.
Ning pondered carefully for a moment, then elected to once more return to that floating wooden bridge. He advanced rapidly, because he had the feeling that the reason why this bridge existed was to serve as a guide for people to know where to go.
“Thousands of Empyrean Gods have entered Undermoon Lake since ancient times. Why haven’t I encountered any of them?”
Ning stood there atop his Ruyi Soulsnake Shuttle. The shuttle followed the floating wooden bridge forward, advancing at a rapid pace. It flew for millions of kilometers, but still the only thing to be seen was the endless sea and that lonely little bridge. The only sound that could be heard was that of the water slapping against the sides of the bridge.
This made Ning even more wary.
“Although Buddha Jueming successfully escaped this place, he refused to say anything about it. Even when other major powers asked him, he still refused to say a thing. As for the thousands of other Empyrean Gods…” Ning frowned. “Are all of them dead?”
The thought of how thousands of Empyrean Gods might have perished here made Ning even more nervous.
Whoooosh. He continued to fly forward, the shuttle advancing at an astonishing pace. He had flown for more than a hundred million kilometers, but there was still nothing besides the endless bridge.
Suddenly, far off in the distance, an ugly green head suddenly popped out from beneath the surface of the sea. The head stared at the distant white-robed youth aboard the shuttle. Because Ning was only able to see with his eyes, he wasn’t able to discover the appearance of this creature.
“Here comes another one,” the jade-green head mused softly, eyes filled with an excited gleam of bloodlust.