Of his 33 Soul Lamps, six were already extinguished. The other 27 still burned. Of the Seven Desolations, he had completely passed the First, and had experienced one tribulation in the Second Desolation, leaving four more lamps before that Desolation was passed.
In the past, whenever he extinguished Soul Lamps, he had only done so after being completely confident of the outcome. But now... it was a critical moment. Tens of thousands of cultivators were dying to protect him. Therefore, despite lacking complete confidence, he felt that he had no other choice.
As one cultivator after another withered up and died, Meng Hao gritted his teeth, and his eyes gleamed with determination. The flame which burned inside him only continued to grow hotter as it prepared to burn, not himself, but others.
Without any further hesitation, he lifted his right hand and pointed at his 7th Soul Lamp.
“Extinguish!” he said, pushing out with all of the power he could muster, unleashing the last scrap of his divine will to crush down onto the 7th Soul lamp. It was like a wind had gusted past the lamp. The flame flickered, and then... was snuffed out.
A curl of smoke floated up, which instantly bored into Meng Hao through his mouth and nose. As it spread out through his body, he began to shake, and blood oozed out of his eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. His cultivation base began to rumble, and his fleshly body filled, first with numbness, then stabs of pain.
It was almost as if his body was a combination of both Yin and Yang, with one half being icy cold, and the other scorching hot!
His cultivation base was now growing. Before, it had been almost completely spent, but now it was recovering. As it did, his body withered rapidly under the simultaneous freezing and scorching of Yin and Yang.
In the blink of an eye, he was nothing more than a pile of flesh and bones. Furthermore, the sensation of deadly crisis within him soared to incredible heights. It almost felt like... his body was about to be transformed into nothing more than ash.
Paragon Xuan Fang’s eyes glowed brightly as he looked at Meng Hao’s Soul Lamps. Although his expression remained neutral, inside, he was being battered by massive waves of shock.
“His cultivation base....” Despite being shocked, he began to walk faster. The will of a Paragon spread out, and more of the 100,000 cultivators withered, many of them transforming into ash.
Of the 100,000 people, only half remained alive!
However, not a single one of that remaining group chose to give up. It wasn't that they lacked a fear of death, but rather, they understood that Meng Hao... was more important than all of them added together!
For the Mountain and Sea Realm, for their families, for their friends... they were willing to die to prevent Meng Hao from perishing!
“You people are looking to die!” Paragon Xuan Fang roared, pushing forward, unleashing his cultivation base, sending a divine ability roaring out. There were now 50,000 cultivators left, and even as blood spurted out of their various wounds, Meng Hao chuckled bitterly. He wasn’t sure whether or not he would die, but he did know that the power of one extinguished Soul Lamp was not enough to recover his cultivation base. His eyes gleamed with cold light, and he clenched his jaw viciously.
“Extinguishing a single Soul Lamp doesn’t count as risking it!” His divine will exploded out to extinguish his 8th Soul Lamp!
Rumbling sounds echoed out as the flame flickered, then suddenly winked out. Smoke poured into Meng Hao’s body, and he lifted his head up and let out a piercing howl. Then he slowly rose to his feet, his energy rapidly returning to its previous heights. Simultaneously, the intense sensation of imminent danger exploded up within him.
His body had already been extremely withered, but now it got even worse, to the point where nothing seemed to remain behind other than skin and bones. And yet, his eyes shone with indescribable intensity.
He leaped up into the air, his energy soaring, surrounded by rumbling sounds. He flew out from the center of the spell formation toward Xuan Fang, whose face instantly fell. At the same time, Xuan Fang clenched his hand into a fist and unleashed a punch.
Meng Hao’s expression was vicious, and his overall appearance completely ferocious. The Second Desolation would not be immediately fatal, which gave Meng Hao time to take three steps forward and use his God-Slaying Fist to meet Paragon Xuan Fang’s punch.
A massive boom echoed out as the two fists slammed into each other. A tremor ran through Xuan Fang; he might be a Paragon, but his short battle with Meng Hao had left him completely and utterly shaken. His qi and blood were set aboil, and his eyes burned with killing intent. Just when he was about to unleash another attack, Meng Hao coughed up a mouthful of blood. Then, a wild gleam appeared in his eyes, and he waved his hand toward his 9th Soul lamp. Unexpectedly... he was planning to extinguish that Soul Lamp too!!
“Are you crazy!?!?” Xuan Fang blurted in shock. He had never seen anyone successively extinguish one Soul Lamp after another. Doing that was courting almost certain death! Eyes glittering coldly, he asked, “Are you that set on killing me before you die?”
Just when he was about to launch another attack, he realized that after extinguishing his 9th Soul Lamp, Meng Hao was actually... extinguishing the 10th!!
When both of those Soul Lamps were extinguished, their smoke poured into Meng Hao’s nose and mouth, filling his body and causing his cultivation base to rise explosively. At the same time, his battle prowess reached a completely shocking level.
He had just extinguished four Soul Lamps in one effort, which filled him with four times the power he had commanded when initially igniting his Ancient Realm Soul Lamps. Right now, his cultivation base and battle prowess exceeded that of an Imperial Lord!
He was now only slightly behind a Paragon in terms of power. In terms of his divine sense, it also experienced explosive growth. Now, it wasn’t eighty percent as powerful as a Paragon’s, it was... equal to a Paragon’s, or even slightly more powerful!
With divine sense power like that, coupled with his cultivation base and battle prowess, it was possible to say that Meng Hao... was now completely qualified to fight to the death with a Paragon. At the same time, his Green Emperor’s Eternal Incantation surged into action, constantly restoring him, ensuring that his battle prowess was truly at its peak!
Unfortunately, the aura of death which surrounded him was incredibly strong, and was soon reaching its peak as well. In addition, the Second Desolation was so intense that his already emaciated frame was... beginning to completely rot.
Blisters appeared all over him, which let out an aura of rot after they popped. There were even some places where his flesh had turned into a bloody mush, revealing... blackened bones!
Those bones had long since been tainted by some sort of curse power. However, Meng Hao ignored all of that, striding forward at increasing speed until he was right in front of Paragon Xuan Fang. There, he lifted his right hand and performed an incantation gesture. The Mountain Consuming Incantation exploded out, causing Xuan Fang’s face to flicker. He could see how terrifying Meng Hao was at this moment, and thus, he didn’t hesitate at all to snort coldly and fall back into retreat.
He didn't want to have anything to do with Meng Hao at the moment; as far as he could tell, Meng Hao was doomed to die, and therefore, there was no reason to continue fighting him and join him in death.
Besides, in his current state, Meng Hao was completely fear-inspiring, even to Xuan Fang.
“Trying to run away?!?!” Meng Hao said, lips twisting into a smile. As of this moment, he didn’t care if he was dying. The only thing he was concerned with right now... was making sure Xuan Fang died with him!
He was convinced that Xuan Fang had no more soul-saving magics left. There was no way for him to evade death. Besides, Meng Hao had the Echelon mark left by Paragon Sea Dream, which meant that he was more than qualified to battle with this 7-Essences Paragon!
Although eking out a victory wouldn't be easy, neither would it be easy for the Paragon to slay him!
Rumbling echoed out as Meng Hao picked up speed, transforming into a black roc. And yet, this roc was also little more than skin and bones. It was as if it had just climbed up out of the grave, completely ferocious in appearance, with a strong aura of death surrounding it as it slashed its claws toward Xuan Fang.
Xuan Fang’s face flickered as he sent out all of the Essence power he could muster. Meng Hao in roc-form slammed into him, and the roc shattered, revealing Meng Hao himself, who staggered backward, coughing up blood. Virtually all of his flesh and blood were destroyed, with nearly half of him being nothing more than bones. And yet, Paragon Xuan Fang was also coughing up blood. In the face of this maddened Meng Hao, he didn’t hesitate at all to yet again fall back into retreat.
Regardless of anything, there was no way he would give Meng Hao a chance to drag him along into death.
It was at this exact moment that the quarter hour ended. Suddenly, the surrounding mist began to roil, and then, in the blink of an eye, vanished.
“Heaven is helping me!” laughed Xuan Fang, his eyes glittering. With that, he flew off of the sun, content with having made a huge accomplishment within the Mountain and Sea Realm.
“Meng Hao is going to die, and the Mountain and Sea Realm’s shield will soon shatter!”
Almost as soon as the mist vanished, Meng Hao could see that beyond the First Sea, and beyond the shield, the 2nd Heaven was bearing down.
The shield was twisting, sinking in, covered with countless, madly flickering magical symbols. Paragon Sea Dream was not in the vicinity; she could not abandon the shield only because of Meng Hao. Now, she was below the shield, using all her power to bolster it.
Meng Hao’s Paragon puppet had lost its connection to his divine will when he was in his fierce fight with Xuan Fang. Now, it had nothing left but its instincts as it hovered there beyond the region where the mist had been.
It was at this point that the land mass that was the 2nd Heaven smashed into the Mountain and Sea Realm’s shield. A huge, ear-splitting boom echoed out through the entire Mountain and Sea Realm, causing all the cultivators’ minds to reel, and their ears to fill with piercing pain. It was the same with the Outsiders beyond the shield that protected the First Sea.
When Meng Hao saw all of this, some of the madness in his eyes faded away. He watched as the huge land mass bashed into the shield, which then shattered into countless fragments.
When that happened, blood sprayed out of Paragon Sea Dream’s mouth, and she suddenly seemed to age. On the moon, blood sprayed out of the mouths of 100,000 cultivators as their bodies were shredded and transformed into nothing more than ash.
Ksitigarbha’s Demon form collapsed, and he returned to his previous cultivator appearance. Blood sprayed out of his mouth, and he sagged in exhaustion; apparently, his Dao foundation was now unstable.
The already cracked land mass that was the 2nd Heaven now entered the Mountain and Sea Realm, transforming into countless meteors that hailed down. At the same time, the millions upon millions of Outsiders waiting outside the First Sea let out excited roars as they charged in.
The tide of battle... had completely shifted!
Chapter 1362: Extinguishing Four Soul Lamps!
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