He had gained the upper hand in a frontal clash, but Ji Ning wasn’t excited or smug about it. This was because he knew that Winesage’s attacks were every bit his equal in terms of profundity. He had an advantage in that his Northbow swords made his Blood Drop stance fully five times more powerful than normal. In the end, however, the Northbow swords were not Universe treasures; they were simply ‘qualified’ to potentially develop into Universe treasures in the future, and they were exceptionally strong when executing the Blood Drop stance.
For him to win was normal. If he had lost, he would’ve been shocked!
Whoosh. Winesage flew back to the center of the river, returning to his normal two-armed form. At the same time, a pair of black gloves appeared on his hands.
“Eh?” Ning’s subconscious began to warn him of tremendous danger. He hurriedly came to a halt.
Winesage slowly levitated to stand above the water, a smile on his face. “I really didn’t expect this. If it wasn’t for my Universe treasure, I wouldn’t be able to keep safe my position atop the rankings. Daolord Darknorth, I admire you very much. You truly are worthy of forcing me to use my Universe treasure.” The black gloves in Winesage’s hands began to emanate a terrifying aura of power.
As for Ning, he warily eyed those black gloves. His Darknorth swords were only strengthened when using the Blood Drop stance; it didn’t strengthen his other stances nearly as much. True Universe treasures, however, would allow each and every stance to be filled with incredible power.
“Come on.” Ning’s eyes were filled with the desire to do battle. “I’ve heard long ago that Universe treasures are very powerful, but I’ve never tested one out for myself. Show me just how tough a Universe treasure is!”
“As you wish.” Winesage waved his right hand. Whoooosh. His black right glove swept out, causing spacetime to shudder as darkness completely covered the world around them.
“What a terrifying palm.” The distant Palace Lord Dawnstar was stunned. “I’ve heard legends of Universe treasures for countless years, but this is my first time actually seeing the power of one of them in person. In the past, Winesage and I were on par with each other, but I’m now no longer a match for him. The difference in power between us is quite apparent.”
Dawnstar truly felt powerless upon seeing this palm. His saber and his skills were focused on attacking! He was supposedly the best close combat expert in the Endless Territories, an offensive specialist… but when he saw Winesage use his Universe treasure to execute the [Extermination Palms], Dawnstar could sense that the power of this attack was far more terrifying than his own. If he had been surpassed even in his area of specialty, how could he not feel powerless?
“Eh?” An illusory figure suddenly appeared in the skies above the Waveshift Realm. It was Realmsoul Polo. “Winesage has a Universe treasure! Although in terms of enlightenment and understanding he remains inferior to the eight lords of the Sacred Cities, in power alone he’s already reached their level.” Polo had a somber look on his face as he looked at that palm come crashing down. “Such incredible power… it threatens the very stability of the Grand Waveshift Formation. Mm… at least Winesage has the good sense not to cause disruption on a large scale.”
Realmsoul Polo was in charge of overseeing this entire realm. When Ning had used the Hegemon Dao-seal, he had unleashed a level of power that surpassed that of Winesage’s strike. Polo, however, hadn’t cared because that Dao-seal was a single-use item. Winesage, however, would be able to rely on his own power to unleash thousands of chops. If he wished to cause wanton destruction, he could possibly disrupt the stability of the entire formation.
“If he does disrupt the formation, I’ll have no choice but to give him a little warning,” Polo mused silently.
This strike used the same [Extermination Palms] technique as before. Ning already understood the principles it operated off of, but the power had increased to a completely different level. This was the level the lords of the eight Sacred Cities had reached! Six Northbow swords in his hands, Ning immediately executed the Omega Sword Dao – Soleheart to defend. He wasn’t so arrogant as to try to take this attack head-on! The difference in power was simply too great.
BOOM! Ning could feel a terrifying amount of power explode against him. Although his Northbow swords had already deflected much of the force, the remainder of it had slammed into him, sending him flying backwards as the water around him was completely annihilated. Ning continued to fly until he slammed into the riverbed, the water around him completely evaporated!
Whoosh. Ning rose to his feet, his face rather ashen. “What a terrifying strike. Thank goodness I’ve reached the third stage of the Omega Sword Dao, and have the Hegemon armor protecting me. Otherwise, I would’ve suffered a heavy injury or even died!”
Rumble… the ‘surviving’ waters of the river came flooding into to replenish the empty area around him.
“He didn’t even spit up blood?” The distant Winesage was shocked as well. Not only had Darknorth survived, he hadn’t even been injured to the point of vomiting blood?
“Fellow Daoist Darknorth, take a few more strikes from me!” Winesage continued to press the attack. Boom! Boom! Boom! He used a series of palm-strikes, fist-strikes, and finger-strikes against Ning. Ning was forced to rely exclusively on defensive stances; given the overwhelming disparity in power, he didn’t have any way to fight back at all.
Ning was hit by one attack after another. This was a crushing assault!
“What incredible defenses.”
“Ji Ning’s defensive prowess equals his offensive prowess.” Palace Lord Dawnstar sighed in amazement when he saw this. He was skilled in offensive attacks, but his defensive techniques were much weaker than Ning’s. “He should also have an incredible strong defensive divine ability. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to take hits like that.”
“So this is what a Universe treasure is like.” After fighting for a while, Ning felt his entire body turn numb from pain. However, he now knew much more about Universe treasures.
Universe treasures provided a tremendous boost in strength, but as with all sources of external power it had its limits. Although Winesage had now reached the level of the lords of the eight Sacred Cities in power, he would definitely be at a disadvantage when fighting them. This was because the eight lords were equal to him in power but superior to him in profundity of technique.
In comparison to the eight lords, the techniques which Winesage and Ning were using would seem a bit clumsy. However, Winesage deserved to be proud; the eight lords of the Sacred Cities stood at the true pinnacle of the Endless Territories and were second only to the three Hegemons in power. Given their status, they normally would never act against Daolords.
Eternal Emperors innately felt a sense of superiority when meeting Daolords, because they knew that even the most supreme of Daolords would eventually die if they failed their Daomerge. There was no way for them to live longer than 108,000 chaos cycles.
“Winesage, your Universe treasure truly is formidable. I’m unable to resist its power at all. Since I’ve experienced it for myself… it’s time for me to say farewell,” Ning said loudly. A heartbeat later, he vanished into thin air. The area around them was still covered by the nine novessence arts as well as Ning’s heartworld projection, but Ning himself had vanished. Winesage was completely unable to locate him and thus didn’t even know what direction to pursue in.
A while later, Ning appeared more than a million kilometers away. “Winesage, farewell,” Ning called out.
After him! Winesage continued to pursue, unwilling to give up, but Ning was able to move at a hundred times the speed of light, the same rate at which Winesage himself flew when using his magic treasure. Given that the two moved at the same speed, and given that Ning was able to use the Shadowless evasion art to disappear at will, there was no way for Winesage to catch up to him at all.
This pursuit went on for a full day. Winesage clearly had no chance at all, but he still refused to give up. His situation was different from Ning’s. For Ning, the 108,000 limit was something which incredibly far off in the future, but for Winesage it felt imminent. He had already been alive for more than 100,000 chaos cycles! This was why he so desperately wanted the Voidsea Jadeseal.
Boom! As Ning was flying past a series of snow-topped peaks, he suddenly felt an aura of eternity manifest out of nowhere and cover the area around him.
“This aura…?” Both Ning and the pursuing Winesage were stunned. This aura was a vast and ancient one that radiated eternity and immortality.
Rumble… radiant, incandescent light suddenly appeared above the Waveshift Realm. The light appeared directly above Ning and slowly began to descend, containing a degree of power that was simply inconceivable. Both Ning and Winesage felt a sense of inexplicable terror; the aura of might around this rainbow light surpassed even that of a Hegemon’s.
The countless streaks of rainbow light began to circle around the region which Ning was in, as that aura of supremacy descended.
“What’s this?” Ning and Winesage exchanged a glance, both looking stunned.
“The prime essences of the Daos of the universe have come to offer their congratulations,” Ning murmured. “Yet another Daolord has succeeded in his Daomerge to gain eternity?”
“Someone succeeded in the Daomerge and gained eternity?” The distant Winesage revealed a look of disbelief. “Someone succeeded in the Daomerge? Yet another Eternal Emperor has been born?”
Although he was an incredible figure, his chances at the Daomerge remained incredibly slim. When he saw the prime essences of the universe descend upon the area in celebration, he understood that a new Eternal Emperor had to have been born.
“The Daomerge gave birth to a new Eternal Emperor!”
“Someone succeeded in the Daomerge?”
“Who completed the Daomerge?”
The countless Daolords of the Waveshift Realm watched as the dazzling rainbow light descended, all of them stunned by that invincible, supreme aura that came with it.