A thousand kilometers south of the City of Ten Thousand Swords, the only commandery city of the Grand Xia Dynasty which was under control of the Ji clan. This place was a desolate mountain forest, completely ordinary and unremarkable! However, in the air above this desolate mountain forest, an enormous vortex had appeared! This was a rainbow vortex, thirty thousand meters high, its influence omnidirectional.
This enormous rainbow vortex was wildly pulling in the surrounding elemental energy. Because the collection of elemental energy was too vigorous, and the density of the collected energy was too high, the swirling pressure compacted it to the point where a rainbow of colors had appeared. This enormous elemental vortex…agitated the elemental aura in the surrounding area to surge outward in waves, causing those powerful ripples to broadcast in every direction!
This elemental vortex was shaped like a sharp awl, pointed directly downwards towards the ground. Clearly, the origin of this natural vortex was directly located within the ground region of that desolate mountain forest.
A male figure appeared in the air, amidst the vibrating elemental energy. This man had long, loose hair, and wore black, traditional robes which had a strange beast embroidered onto them. He wore a crested crown on his head, and his face was as pale as jade. He naturally emanated a lofty aura, and his gaze was directed downwards, staring towards that origin point which the swirling, enormous elemental vortex was ‘pointing’ towards.
“Oh?” The black robed man nodded slightly. “This Anomaly…it should be that someone has reached the Void stage and become an Earth Immortal! I wonder if which side this new Earth Immortal belongs to…this is Swallow Mountain. The number of large tribes, schools, and sects located near Swallow Mountain can be counted on one hand. The closest one is the Heavenly Saint Sect! Can it be that one of the Primal Daoists of the Heavenly Saint Sect has made a breakthrough? But if it were one of the Primal Daoists of the Heavenly Saint Sect, there should be protectors and guardians nearby.”
While pondering, he continued to stand there, watching quietly in mid-air.
The appearance of an Anomaly such as this meant that this person had already succeeded. It would be too late to stop it.
The enormous elemental vortex suddenly collapsed, causing the nearby elemental energy to violently tremble, but soon everything returned to normal. Right at the moment that the elemental vortex collapsed…a man appeared out of nowhere, garbed in fiery red robes and carrying three greatswords on his back. His two temples had hints of white hair, and he swept the area with a lightning-like gaze, soon noticing the black robed man who stood in the distance in mid-air.
“Congratulations, my fellow Daoist, for having returned to the Void and become an Earth Immortal!” The black robed man laughed.
“Might I ask who you are, fellow Daoist?” The man carrying the three greatswords on his back asked immediately. He didn’t dare to be discourteous either; he knew that the Anomaly generated by his breakthrough had lasted for only a short period of time. For someone to be able to sense it and also hurry over in such a short period of time…that was no ordinary feat.
The black robed man laughed. “I am Northmont Skyfall! And you, fellow Daoist?”
The red robed man, hearing this, was shocked.
Throughout the Stillwater Commandery, this surname was known to represent the most exalted force present; the Marquis of Stillwater! The Marquis of Stillwater was of the Northmont clan! Ever since the time when the Grand Xia Dynasty unified the world and bequeathed marquisdoms, the Northmont clan and the Marquis of Stillwater had been in control of this region. Their roots were extremely deep, far more so than any of the other forces present in Stillwater Commandery. The only organization capable of competing for supremacy in this region was the Raindragon Guard, which represented the Grand Xia Dynasty itself!
A look of delight was on the red robed man’s face as he said hurriedly, “So it is Immortal Laxiao! I was wondering who within the Stillwater Commandery could instantly notice this elemental Anomaly, and had guessed that only the Northmont clan of Stillwater was capable of this! I didn’t expect that the famous, world-renowned Immortal Skyfall had come in person. Compared to you, Immortal Skyfall, I’m just a junior. I imagine that you, Immortal Skyfall, have never even heard of my name. However, I did have a nickname in the past; Daoist Firedragon. Immortal Skyfall, have you heard of me?”
This Immortal Skyfall who stood before him was a Loose Immortal who had lived for tens of thousands of years. The longer Loose Immortals lived, the more terrifying they became. Although he was confident in being able to stay alive if Immortal Skyfall attacked, he knew that in terms of power, as a new Earth Immortal, he was probably a level weaker in strength.
“Daoist Firedragon?” Immortal Skyfall was briefly startled. He truly hadn’t heard of this figure before. He immediately said, “I truly haven’t heard of you. I imagine that prior to this, fellow Daoist, you weren’t present in the Stillwater Commandery region.”
“When I was a Wanxiang Adept, I went to the East Sea.” The red robed man immediately said. “While adventuring in the East Sea, I suddenly broke through to the Primal stage, and acquired the nickname of Daoist Firedragon. Because I was in the distant, remote East Sea…it isn’t strange that you have never heard of me, Immortal Skyfall. A hundred years ago, I returned once more to this region. Perhaps because I felt very moved upon returning to my ancient homeland, I had a sudden feeling and thus immediately found a place to start training. I sealed myself into a training cave for a hundred years, and today, I just made my breakthrough.
Immortal Skyfall nodded. “So that’s how it is. Daoist Firedragon, might I ask where your homeland was?”
“I myself am from Stillwater Commandery.” Daoist Firedragon said. “Unfortunately, my clan was eliminated long ago. I won’t lie to you, Immortal Skyfall; the purpose of this return of mine was to seek out my clansmen and rebuild my clan, and also to avenge my clan and execute this blood feud.”
“Hahaha…” Immortal Skyfall laughed clearly. “So Daoist Firedragon, you are of my Stillwater Commandery? My Stillwater Commandery now has yet another Immortal. I truly am overjoyed! It is karmic which brings the two of us together, Daoist Firedragon. As for your matters, you can consider them to be the matters of the Marquis Palace of Stillwater. There’s no need for us to continue speaking here. Come, let’s go to Stillwater City. My clan’s Lord Marquis will definitely receive you, fellow Daoist, with the greatest of ceremony.”
“Then I’ll obey your request rather than standing on ceremony.” Daoist Firedragon laughed as well.
An Immortal was someone worthy of befriending.
Immortal Firedragon was in no rush to join a side right now. He had to see what sort of offers would be made to him, after all. He knew very well that in the end, this boundless world belonged to the Grand Xia Dynasty. If he wanted to rise and to make his clan grow and prosper, it was best if he either joined with the forces of the Grand Xia Dynasty, or if he joined with the forces of the various Marquises, who had deep roots in their respective areas.
“Let’s go.” Immortal Skyfall stretched his hand out, taking Immortal Firedragon’s.
They disappeared from mid-air.
The City of Ten Thousand Swords was the base and foundation of the Ji clan. Ji Ninefire and Granny Shadow both lived within this city. What’s more, that elemental Anomaly originated from just a thousand or so kilometers from the city; given their speed, the two of them naturally soon arrived at the desolate mountain forest.
“It should be right here.” Ninefire and Granny Shadow, along with an old servant, were currently standing atop a large magic calabash gourd. Ninefire was staring down at the desolate mountain forest. He said, “But why is it that it seems as though this mountain wilderness is very calm. There’s nothing special here.”
“I can’t see anything either.” Granny Shadow and the old servant were watching as well.
“Elder Brother.” Granny Shadow said in her hoarse voice. “I’ll go down and take a look. Ah Xing, you stay here as well.”
“Mistress, let me go.” The old servant let out a hoarse whisper, and then transformed into a ray of light, descending towards the desolate mountain forest below.
Granny Shadow was frantic. “Ah Xing!”
“Wait.” Ninefire looked at Granny Shadow. “This old servant of yours truly is devoted to you.”
The earlier, violent ripples of elemental energy clearly involved a major affair. The first person to investigate thus would be taking on great risk. Ninefire, as the Patriarch of the Ji clan, was the true pillar of the clan and thus couldn’t be risked. This was why Granny Shadow was about to go down, but the old servant went down first.
“In the entire world, Ah Xing is the most loyal person to me.” Granny Shadow said gently.
A blur from below rose into the skies, landing atop the flying gourd. It was that old servant with unbound hair and dressed in beast furs. Ninefire immediately asked, “How is it?”
“There is a large amount of elemental ore below.” The old servant said in a low voice.
“A large amount of elemental ore?” Ninefire frowned. “How much?” Elemental ore contained gems which possessed elemental energy. However, the amount of elemental energy which people were able to absorb each day was limited, generally speaking. At a certain point in time, it would be impossible to absorb any more. Ordinary elemental gems were thus used to set up formations, or they might be useful in creating golems.
But training? They weren’t very useful.
But of course, some rare natural treasures existed that didn’t place much of a strain on the body, but which when ingested could provide power comparable to ten or even a hundred years of training. In addition, amongst elemental stones, there were high quality ones which had special effects. The elemental energy within high class elemental stones was very pure; when absorbing the energy within them, the body wasn’t placed under much strain, and thus by using them, in a single day, one would be able to make gains comparable to ten days of normal training. However, the rate of consumption of stones for training in such a way was significant as well! It wasn’t so bad if one only occasionally used a piece or two of high class elemental stones, but if an Immortal practitioner wanted to use them for long term training, one would have to buy thousands or more.
This wasn’t something which the Ji clan was capable of affording.
“Very many. Very many.” The old servant said solemnly. “It should be an elemental ore mine. In addition, my superficial scan turned up high quality elemental stones already.”
“What? An elemental ore mine? With high class elemental stones?” Ninefire was instantly stunned.
An elemental ore mine?
Generally speaking, certain special environments would produce elemental ore mines. But of course, one was also capable of intentionally forming an elemental ore mine. For the sake of making his breakthrough, Immortal Firedragon had to have enough elemental energy present for him to use. Thus, he was willing to pay a high price to set up a grand formation which drew in the surrounding elemental energy. Day after day, month after month, an elemental ore mine was formed.
“Elemental ore mine?” Granny Shadow revealed a look of excitement as well. “Our Ji clan is about to suddenly rise to prominence?!”
“Let’s go take a look first.” Ninefire suppressed his excitement. He immediately collected his magic gourd, and the three of them descended at high speed into the desolate mountain forest, diving into the ground to investigate.