Chapter 1248: Leaving the 33 Hells!
“Rise to prominence.” What those words meant, and what they represented, was different now than what they had meant during his time in the Fang Clan. There, rising to prominence involved he himself flying to great heights.
Meng Hao was a member of the Fang Clan, and the Crown Prince of the direct bloodline at that. His father had a profoundly high cultivation base, and Meng Hao also had the support of the direct bloodline Elders.
Because of that, rather than saying that he had helped the direct bloodline rise to prominence, it would be better to say that Meng Hao had been demonstrating his own worthiness.
The situation in the Meng Clan... was different. Based on the level of his cultivation base, he could earn himself a high position within the Meng Clan if he wanted to. However, unless he stayed with the Meng Clan in the Eighth Mountain and Sea forever, it would do no good. Once he left, the bloodline would be left waiting for his grandfather to return, and would be back in exactly the same position they had been in before Meng Hao had arrived.
To rise to prominence with the Meng Clan meant... that the entire bloodline needed to rise, not just a single person.
Meng Hao stood there, lost in deep and somber thought. Meng Chen’s handful of words caused him to ponder the decline of his grandfather's bloodline, and the serious crisis they were now facing. The fact that they only had one Immortal Realm cultivator said a lot.
It meant that the entire bloodline could be wiped away at virtually any time.
In fact, no one else in the clan would care at all about Meng Chen’s death, because it would have virtually no impact on the clan as a whole. But to his bloodline, it spelled out certain disaster.
Their only Immortal Realm cultivator was dead....
“How did things come to this?” Meng Hao thought. He truly didn’t understand how, in less than a thousand years, a once flourishing bloodline could experience such a decline. There was really only one possibility.
“All of the powerful experts died, leaving behind only widows and orphans....” Meng Hao trembled where he stood, his eyes bloodshot and his heart twinging with pain. He could well imagine the current situation in the bloodline, and it filled his heart with deep guilt.
He then silently made his way off into the distance, ignoring his plan to go find Han Qinglei. As of now, there was no need to rely on him to leave this place. Meng Hao would use Meng Chen’s identity instead.
After the time it takes an incense stick to burn, rumbling sounds echoed out within the necropolis, and everything began to shake as a huge rift appeared. A terrifying power of expulsion also began to rise up.
According to Greed’s memories, that was the way to leave this place. There was a small spell formation aperture which, when powered by Greed’s life force Essence, would open the exit.
As the rumbling echoed out, Meng Hao took advantage of the expulsion power to shoot out through the rift. He was followed by a shocked Han Qinglei, who quickly turned back to look at the rift leading back to the necropolis. He realized that the only people to be disgorged were himself and this other person from the Meng Clan.
Of all the other people, none emerged... not even Meng Hao.
This could only lead him to one conclusion.
“Dead? Impossible!” Han Qinglei simply couldn’t believe that Meng Hao had died inside. Suddenly, he thought back to the last moment in which he had seen Meng Hao, and how odd the situation had been.
Han Qinglei suddenly had a very bad feeling. Sighing, he turned and looked at the world around him, which was once again wreathed in mists. Roars could be heard therein, as well as the sounds of cultivators unleashing magical techniques.
He looked back at the Meng Clan cultivator who had been ejected from the necropolis along with him. The reason he could so easily identify him as coming from the Meng Clan was that all of the members of the Meng Clan who had come to this place had Immortal Realm cultivation bases, and currently, Meng Hao had suppressed his cultivation base down to that very level.
“Everyone else died, how come he’s still alive...?” Han Qinglei thought, eyes glittering. However, just as he was about to examine Meng Hao closer, an enraged roar echoed out.
“Hungry... so hungry....” The sound was joined by the clank of iron chains. A moment later, a black iron chain shot out from the mists, causing mountains to crumble down below, and destroying a few cultivators who got in its way.
The mists seethed, and soon, a giant became visible, around whose enormous belly were wrapped numerous iron chains.
Several cultivators surrounded it, including Dao Realm experts, all of whom were engaged in fierce battle.
Even though the old man from the Heavengod Society had left after Meng Hao and the others had gotten sucked into the necropolis, obviously other cultivators had entered in search of good fortune.
“What is this thing!?” Han Qinglei gasped. Although the mists made things difficult to see, it was possible to discern that the giant was actually covered by countless whisker-like tentacles, some of which were wrapped around the iron chains and the rest of which flailed about in the air. It was a truly shocking sight.
The creature was currently being besieged by numerous cultivators, many of whom appeared to be collecting the blood that dripped down from the tentacles surrounding the giant.
Han Qinglei, who had just been distracted by all the figures in the mists, turned back only to find that the Meng Clan cultivator was gone. He looked once more in the direction of the necropolis, then let out a long sigh and buried his suspicions in his heart, flying up into the air toward the exit.
Concealed in the mists, Meng Hao watched Han Qinglei heading off. Keeping his head down, he followed along, waiting a bit after Han Qinglei actually left through the exit before flying toward it himself.
It was not that he was on guard against Han Qinglei, who had actually come here to save him. The friendship he had shown was something that Meng Hao would remember. However, it wouldn’t be very convenient to meet with him in his current identity. His speculations regarding what had happened to his grandfather’s bloodline still weighed heavily on his heart.
As Meng Hao flew up into the air toward the exit, someone spun out of control through the air toward him from off in the distance. It was an Ancient Realm cultivator, who had been attacking the giant and was now coughing up blood and had a very ashen face. Just now, the terrifying giant had swiped at him, and just the ripples of pressure from the blow had very nearly killed him. He was sent spinning tens of thousands of meters away, ending up right in front of Meng Hao.
Meng Hao dodged to the side and then continued on his way up. The Ancient Realm cultivator was a middle-aged man, who wiped the blood off his mouth, glanced fearfully at the giant off in the distance, then looked at Meng Hao.
“Immortal Realm? You actually dared to enter this place as an Immortal Realm cultivator? What sect are you from?” The cultivator’s eyes flashed as he flew forward to block Meng Hao’s path.
“Screw off!” Meng Hao said icily, not slowing down a bit.
“How dare you!” the man said with a cold snort. “Are you looking to die?!” As he shot toward Meng Hao, he reached out to grab him. Meng Hao frowned, eyes flickering with killing intent at the man’s obvious ill designs. However, before the man could get close, massive rumbling sounds filled the air.
The surrounding mists began to seethe and churn. At the same time, the besieged giant suddenly became completely clear to Meng Hao’s eyes.
It was fully 3,000 meters tall and had a belly that was so fat it seemed almost like a sphere, surrounded by writhing tentacles. Were it not for the fact that it had a head and four limbs, it might look like a globe.
It held an enormous cudgel in its hand, which it waved about as it roared, “Hungry... so hungry....”
Its left hand suddenly reached out and grabbed a cultivator, then popped him into its mouth. Blood oozed out as the giant chewed the man up and then swallowed him down. All the while, the other cultivators surrounding the giant were looking on.
Meng Hao heard the miserable scream, and then watched as the man was swallowed down. Next, one of the giant's tentacles suddenly began to glow brightly as if there were some sort of crystalline liquid flowing inside of it. Immediately, the other surrounding cultivators, even the Dao Realm experts, began to attack that very tentacle.
Booms rang out, and the tentacle shattered, causing numerous drops of crystalline fluid to scatter about, which the cultivators then snatched up.
It was at this point that a cold voice suddenly rang out in Meng Hao’s ear.
“Did you see that? Now it's time for you to do me a favor. We're going to use your body to trade for some of that moon elixir!” It was none other than the middle-aged man, whose hand shot out like lighting to grab Meng Hao. Meng Hao didn’t even look back at him. He simply pointed his right index finger behind him and caused him to lurch to a stop, despite not even touching him. The man’s eyes went wide with disbelief as he suddenly lost all control of his body, and was rooted in place behind Meng Hao.
Astonishment filled his eyes, and waves of shock filled his heart.
Meng Hao looked back thoughtfully at the giant. Suddenly, massive rumbling filled the air as a powerful force of expulsion rose up from within the world, filling the lands.
That force of expulsion began to push the cultivators up into the air. Simultaneously, the roiling mists formed into numerous vicious faces, which roared as they shot toward the crowds of cultivators up above.
It was as if they were going to drive these people away!
Most shocking of all was that the exit up above began to shrink, as if it were closing.
Immediately, the cultivators began to shout and fly up into the air.
“Let’s go, the exit’s closing! Get out of here!”
“The 33 Hells are only open for a limited time. They have an initial opening, a major opening, and a final opening. Each opening last longer than the last. Let’s go, we’ll have more chances later. From ancient times until now, anyone who has stayed behind after the exit closes has never been heard from again!”
“It’s too bad this gravesite is so barren. There was no mountain of weapons, and only one cultivator was buried here alongside the one who was suppressed....” The voices of the crowd echoed as everyone flew up toward the exit.
The giant was still roaring and attacking the crowds. The expulsion power grew more intense, and Meng Hao flashed toward the exit, dragging the middle-aged man along with him.
As the crowds neared the exit and were about to leave, the giant all of a sudden looked at all of them, opened its mouth, and roared a Heaven-shaking, Earth-shattering roar. Its body swelled rapidly, and its tentacles extended rapidly. In the blink of an eye, you couldn't see its head or its limbs; it looked like a giant, 30,000-meter sphere.
The shocked cultivators watched as over 10,000 tentacles shot up into the air like lightning. Many of the cultivators were too slow, and were caught by them, after which rift-like mouths opened up on the tentacles and swallowed them down.
Everyone was in a pandemonium; by now, the exit was only about thirty percent of its original size. Everyone shot toward it as fast as possible, speeding out of the exit; as for the tentacles, they didn't dare to follow, and instead began to attack other people who hadn't escaped yet.
One tentacle shot toward Meng Hao, but as it neared, his hand made a grasping motion. Instantly, the middle-aged cultivator’s face flickered with fear and despair as Meng Hao tossed him out to the tentacle. It immediately consumed him, after which Meng Hao calmly stepped through the exit. As he did, he looked back at the huge 30,000-meter spheroid giant and its writhing tentacles, as well as the ferocious visages formed by the mist.
Then, he left.
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