Chapter 565: Meeting an Old Friend
Meng Hao stood up and looked at the corpse of Inner Sect Disciple Xu Long for a moment. Then, he didn’t hesitate any longer. He turned and, following the same path he had to get to this location, sped away.
He just could not resign himself to ignoring that strange person.
The Primordial Demon Immortal Plane might be a dangerous place, but he was here. Picking a path of danger was well in line with the expression, ‘rewards come only with risk.’ The only way to continue to maintain an advantage in the Second Plane was to make a difficult choice such as this right now.
If he was more concerned with safety, and unwilling to take risks, why had he come to this place to begin with? To stare at a mountain of treasure while wringing one’s hands would cause even mortals to sigh in regret, let alone Cultivators!
Meng Hao would much rather go all out in risk than worry about safety, especially when he had a chance to fight for good fortune!
Who could possibly settle for mediocrity? Members of the Fang Clan had long since experimented with the identity of Inner Sect Disciple Xu Long, and of course acquired good fortune, although they had not done so perfectly.
Regarding the potential different time periods, and the seven paths taken with Xu Long as a host body, all of that information was recorded in the jade slip. After glancing it over, Meng Hao wasn’t certain that he could do any better than the others had. Therefore, if he chose to go with this Inner Sect disciple’s identity, all he might acquire was Daoist magic that the Fang Clan had long since already acquired.
Anything else would be very difficult. Many times, one’s starting point will determine one’s final destination.
The successive generations of the Fang Clan were clearly intelligent, and had already done all that could be done. Any further gain would come only from good luck. As far as that was concerned, Meng Hao would rather rely on his own luck to gain his own opportunity.
Therefore, he chose to abandon the path of Inner Sect Disciple Xu Long. There wasn’t a single scrap of hesitation as he used Fang Yu’s method to safely leave the area. It took him about four hours before he was finally clear. Without even looking back, he headed toward the fourth peak.
After calculating the time, he thought to himself. “I still have thirty-four hours left.” Employing all the speed that was possible, he cautiously made his way through the various ruins and corpses.
Time passed. Ten hours later, he was at the third peak. He didn’t see anyone the entire time, which didn’t cause him any pause for thought. More than half of the seventy-two hour period had passed, and presumably, most of the other had already found the host bodies they were looking for, and were waiting there.
“Twenty-four hours left,” he thought, looking toward the fourth peak far off in the distance. He pushed himself faster.
Ten more hours went by, and he had already passed the halfway point between the third peak and the fourth peak. Suddenly, a rumbling broke the silence. Based on how faint it was, it was obviously coming from quite some distance away. However, Meng Hao could feel it instantly.
Mixed in with the sound were pulsating ripples of divine abilities and magical techniques. By the time they reached Meng Hao, they were very weak, but he was still able to to sense a familiar aura within them.
He stopped in his tracks for a moment and then frowned. After examining the aura further, his frown deepened. He knew who this aura belonged to.
“Zhao Fang of the great Cloud Sky Tribe.” He looked off in the distance, a thoughtful look in his eye. Currently there were only fourteen hours left until the First Plane closed.
He could tell that he needed ten hours just to get from his current location to the fourth mountain. That meant he only would only have four hours to get to the top of peak. Time was tight, and he couldn’t afford to waste it.
He proceeded forward. However, after going about three hundred meters, he suddenly turned and headed in the direction of Zhao Fang’s aura, his expression extremely cold. He had made a promise to Patriarch Cloud Sky, and they had a deal. The extent to which he followed up on his promise was the extent to which the other party would respect the agreement.
There was no one around to police the arrangement, but it existed in his heart.
Conducting oneself properly often amounts to maintaining a clear conscience.
He shot through the air at top speed for the amount of time it takes half an incense stick to burn. Soon he caught sight of two Cultivators locked in battle in the ruins up ahead.
One of them was Zhao Fang. He was clearly in a very poor position. His expression was one of fury. His clothes were stained with blood and his face was pale. Clearly, he had been injured.
He was fighting a man who wore a white robe and had long, voluminous hair. He was slender and handsome, and was clearly the type of man whom any woman would cast glances at. Three flying spikes circulated around him, leaving behind trails of colorful lights as they flew through the air. They also emanated a penetrating aura that made the white-robed man seem even more elegant.
Actually there weren’t just two people up ahead. About thirty meters or so behind the white-robed man was a woman in a violet garment. She was beautiful, with a shrewd smile and an intelligent air to her. Anyone who looked at her would instantly be able to tell that she was cunning and resourceful.
She watched the magical combat with a smile on her face. She made no move to attack, but when she looked at the white-robed man, a profound look occasionally flickered within her eyes. It was not romantic admiration, but… something else.
“This host body belongs to the great Cloud Sky Tribe!” Cried Zhao Fang. “You want to steal it from me? Despotic!”
Another boom could be heard; Zhao Fang coughed up a mouthful of blood and staggered backward. He glared at the man in the white robe, killing intent flickering in his eyes. As he had said, the great Cloud Sky Tribe had discovered this location. However, almost as soon as he had arrived, this man and woman appeared and attacked him.
Obviously, they wanted to take control of the location. If it weren’t for the fact that the woman had ceased hostilities after her initial sneak attack, he would surely have been dead already.
“Nobody owns anything in the Demon Immortal Sect,” said the white-robed man coolly, looking at Zhao Fang with a look of coldness and disdain. “If you insist that I, Wang, am stealing it, then so be it. Why don’t you just screw off? If you attack me one more time, I’ll kill you.”
Zhao Fang had the most latent talent of anyone in the great Cloud Sky Tribe. Although luck was important in the ancient Demon Immortal Sect, so was latent talent. The greater the latent talent, the easier it would be to gain enlightenment regarding various techniques and legacies.
Before being sent here, Zhao Fang was in the mid Nascent Soul stage. Just before leaving, though, the Patriarch had personally used various magical techniques to temporarily raise him to the peak of the late Nascent Soul stage, a state which would last for three months.
The corpse that he was defending was no ordinary Inner Sect disciple. It was much rarer, a disciple who was half way into the Conclave status. The reason was that this particular disciple had a relative of the elder generation who was already a Conclave disciple.
The information regarding that relationship was something the great Cloud Sky Tribe had expended much effort to acquire.
Zhao Fang’s eyes were bloodshot. Unfortunately, the man he faced up against currently really was of the late Nascent Soul stage, whereas he himself had reached that level only by the use of force. He could fight back, but his opponent had too many magical items, and he knew that he wasn’t a match.
That was not even to mention the woman. Although she was only at the early Nascent Soul stage, Zhao Fang sensed something even more threatening about her than the man. It was a strange feeling that filled him with shock.
Just as Zhao Fang was gritting his teeth and angrily resigning himself to the fact that he would have to leave, a popping sound could suddenly be heard. Dust was kicked up in all directions, followed by a pulsating pressure that caused the white-robed man’s face to fall and his eyes to widen.
The violet-robed woman’s beautiful face was also filled with a look of shock. She cocked her head to look of into the distance.
Zhao Fang gaped as a green smoke shot through the air, within which was a black moon. It moved with incredible speed as it approached.
As soon as he caught sight of the black moon, Zhao Fang nearly went wild with joy. In the last moments before leaving for the Primordial Demon Immortal Plane, Patriarch Cloud Sky had transmitted information to him regarding Meng Hao’s agreement to help.
“Elder Brother Meng, please help me!”
Almost in the same moment that his words rang out, the green smoke and black moon arrived. The moon vanished and the smoke dissipated to reveal Meng Hao, wearing a green robe. He stood there looking around coldly at the three people present.
When the violet-robed woman saw Meng Hao, her eyes went as wide as saucers. A look of astonishment and disbelief appeared on her face, as well as something that rarely could be seen on her features; intense emotion and confusion.
“Meng… Meng Hao?” she said, her voice hoarse. Her mind filled with great waves of roaring.
When the white-robed man saw Meng Hao, he also stared blankly. Apparently he found Meng Hao’s features to be familiar, but couldn’t place where he had seen him before. However, when he heard what the woman said, he suddenly realized who Meng Hao was.
Zhao Fang’s heart was pounding, not having expected these two to be familiar with Meng Hao.
Meng Hao’s expression was one of indifference as he looked over at the violet-robed woman. After a moment, he smiled.
“Long time no see, Fellow Daoist Han Bei. You look as graceful as ever.” [1. Han Bei was first introduced in chapter 143 when she delivered a medicinal pill to Meng Hao. She was mentioned subsequent times, but didn't become an important character until chapter 155, when the mission into the square cauldron began. She appeared in the story again prominently starting in chapter 245, when Meng Hao went back to the Black Sieve Sect disguised as Fang Mu. She also made minor appearances in the Song Clan, when Fang Mu revealed his identity as Pill Cauldron, and during the events outside the Rebirth Cave.]
This violet-robed woman was none other than the bizarre Han Bei of the Black Sieve Sect. She stood there breathing heavily, a look of disbelief on her face when she heard Meng Hao’s words.
“Is it really you?” she said. She had been left with a profound impression of Meng Hao all those years ago. In her memory, he had brought about one miracle after the next. First, there were the events inside the square cauldron in the Black Sieve Sect’s Blessed Land, then his activities within the Black Sieve Sect itself as Grandmaster Pill Cauldron, and finally what happened outside the Rebirth Cave when he killed the Li Clan Dao Child and the Quasi-Array member of the Ji Clan. All of these things caused great waves of change to sweep across the Southern Domain.
Each one of those events had left Han Bei completely in shock. Although many years had passed, the impression left was still deep and intense. Of course, much of that had to do with the warnings and analysis of the soul of the Han Clan Patriarch.
“Your… your Cultivation base!!” she said, her mind spinning. The shock she felt after sensing the level of his Cultivation base was even more intense than before. Meng Hao was actually of the great circle of the Nascent Soul stage!
She well knew that of the current generation of Dao Children in the Sects and Clans of the Southern Domain, most were of in the early Nascent Soul stage. A few were in the mid Nascent Soul Stage, and only Wang Clan Dao Child Wang Lihai was of the late Nascent Soul stage, although he concealed that fact most of the time, and had revealed it only in the Primordial Demon Immortal Plane.
Once word spread into the Southern Domain, Wang Lihai’s status would be propelled to the number one person of his generation.
And yet, here stood Meng Hao. Han Bei was shaken and could scarcely believe her eyes.
Meng Hao looked over at the white-robed man, who looked just as shocked as Han Bei. Considering how much this man’s face resembled that of Wang Tengfei, Meng Hao instantly knew who he was.
This was Wang Tengfei’s older brother, Wang Clan Dao Child, the person who had feigned death in the Blood Immortal Legacy tournament!
Wang Lihai! [1. Wang Lihai was first introduced in chapter 119 in the Blood Immortal Legacy tournament arc, although it was actually his clone who appeared and subsequently died in the tournament. He later appeared in chapter 264 and subsequent chapters during the Primordial Dao Geyser arc, in which he was soundly defeated by Meng Hao in the guise of the "Faceless Azure Hero"]
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