“So you’ve ascended to immortality, Fangyang Xing.” Lu Yun slowly called out the name of the newcomer, his expression tense.
A void-ascended immortal!
Fangyang Xing had ascended to immortality from the void realm!
Cultivators in the void realm could rival regular immortals,  and many of them could in fact kill immortals with ease.
Void-ascended immortals, however, were a completely different story.
Lu Yun had felt most keenly how much more powerful void-ascended immortals were than regular immortals or void realm cultivators when Xing Chen became an immortal. The gap between them was as great as the distance between heaven and earth!
That one extra step bridged the gap between mundane mortality and magnificent immortality.
Prior to the emergence of the void realm, nascent spirit cultivators might stretch beyond their mortality and slay immortals if they were powerful enough. Wu Tulong was one such example, having killed a cultivation-suppressed dao immortal in the past.
Void-ascended immortals, however, were in a different league entirely. Even the most powerful of void realm cultivators wouldn’t be able to defeat a void-ascended immortal. Lu Yun was no exception, either.
He could defeat regular peerless immortals, but he was no match for a void-ascended true immortal unless he had his replica by his side. Unfortunately, Xing Chen had been smashed by the golden scarlet ape and recovery wouldn’t be achieved overnight. Moreover, Lu Yun couldn’t return to hell until Qing Yu completed her deduction method and incorporated it into the immortal dao of both worlds, giving rise to a standalone school of thought.
“Out of my way.” A trace of pride shone through Fangyang Xing’s mask of impassiveness.
A void-ascended immortal! He’d done it!
He would be the second void-ascended immortal after Mo Yi in the world of immortals if nothing went wrong in the interim. Well... he couldn’t quite be considered a cultivator of this world, and was even less of a living being. His existence was difficult to categorize as he wasn’t alive. He’d merely manifested here using another body.
Scanning Lu Yun briefly, he shifted his attention back to the silver summit.
“The Timelight Tower! It really is the Timelight Tower! That’s the treasure of Empress Timelight! ...away with you!” With a wave of his hand, a great surge of force barrelled out of his hand and bore down on Jing Huaci.
Lu Yun sprang to action as well, stepping before Jing Huaci and splitting the great force with Violetgrave. His body shook after the move and his hands trembled uncontrollably, but his lips were curled into a smile.
“Oh?” Fangyang Xing leveled Lu Yun with a cold stare. “You’re a great talent, Lu Yun. As a disciple of the Firmament Palace, I don’t wish to harm you.”
He was a man with an iron will, and he never gave up once he’d made up his mind. When he’d sensed the existence of the void realm at peak transformed spirit realm and actuated the white path with his grasp of dao, he’d resolutely ventured onto the path despite the terrifying long-haired monsters.
Now, he had his eyes set on the silver summit—the Timelight Tower. It was the personal treasure of a great empress who’d walked the world before the death of the human emperor!
“Kill me? You can’t do that yet.” Lu Yun flashed a grin. “You’ve ascended to immortality after the void realm, yes, but you haven’t passed your immortal tribulation yet, have you? That means you aren’t a true immortal yet, just a void-realm immortal at most.”
The true immortal realm was the first level of immortality. Baptism by heavenly lightning would temper dross into trueness, transforming one’s internal energy into that of an immortal’s. Although Fangyang Xing had ascended to immortality, he had yet to transform into a true immortal via heavenly tribulation.
Xing Chen hadn’t passed a tribulation either, but he was a replica. Lu Yun himself wasn’t an immortal yet, so naturally there was no immortal tribulation for him to face.
Moreover, Xing Chen had been propelled to immortality by the strength of the great lungs. The organ’s previous host had been a powerful immortal in their own right, thus benefitting Xing Chen.
Lu Yun didn’t fear Fangyang Xing, as there was a world’s difference in immortality before and after overcoming that final obstacle.
“Hmph!” Fangyang Xing harrumphed. It was true that he hadn’t overcome his tribulation yet. The celestial master tomb was so strange that it eluded the immortal tribulation’s detection. If he was to become a true immortal, he’d have to leave the tomb first.
However, many treasures had emerged after the tomb had become whole again, including the one right before them. There would be no treasures left for him to claim after returning from his tribulation.
Moreover, he’d noticed many void realm cultivators in the tomb who were a hair’s breadth away from ascending to immortality. They were just suppressing their cultivation with everything at their disposal, rather than allowing themselves to ascend like Fangyang Xing had.
“So what? I can kill you as easily as killing a dog.” Killing intent flashed through his eyes. “Although the Firmament Palace has taken note of you and decided to take you in as a disciple after your death, you must die for Empress Timelight’s treasure.”
The tower was not only the personal treasure of the great empress, but also a potential container for her heritage.
A primeval great empress was a greater existence than even the primordial immortal emperor. Her heritage was far too valuable to allow fall into others’ hands, and information about the treasure was too important to allow out of the bag.
Therefore, Fangyang Xing had killed every immortal outside, Zhang Shuo had been the last of them.
Fangyang Xing’s sword moved as soon as he finished talking, stabbing at Lu Yun’s forehead with impressive precision, steadiness, and ruthlessness.
“So quick!” Lu Yun reflexively threw Violetgrave into the air to block the attack, but a second and third slash swept over him like tidal waves before he could even recover his breath.
Too quick and too vicious!
He had to rely on instinct to barely block Fangyang Xing’s attacks. Caught on the back foot, he gave way defensively and his breathing grew labored. Blood streaked down his fingers.
Lu Yun had yet to meet an opponent like Fangyang Xing since his arrival in the world of immortals. The silver scarlet ape had simply overpowered him with raw power, while Fangyang Xing was not only more powerful, but also more skilled with the sword. Lu Yun’s mind barely had any time to react to the motions.
A mighty push smashed Lu Yun into the silver summit, splattering fresh blood everywhere.
“Sword dao. So you’ve touched upon the doorframe to the way of the sword.” Fangyang Xing lowered his sword, his gaze flickering with unexplained emotions. “I really don’t want to kill you, but... you must die today.”
He moved again, his speed growing threefold. “I may not have weathered my tribulation, but the strength of a void-ascended immortal is still beyond your comprehension!”
A single slash descended upon Lu Yun with overwhelming, incontrovertible power. To his horror, he realized that he couldn’t dodge the attack.
The slash seemed to have become one with the air. No matter where Lu Yun dodged, no matter how he blocked with his sword, he could neither stop nor evade the attack. He could only take it head on.
The shadow of a golden bell emerged beside Lu Yun. Fangyang Xing’s powerful attack slammed into the bell, triggering a burst of brilliant gold and knocking him a dozen steps backward..
“Ah, a dao immortal treasure refined by a false immortal.” Lifting an eyebrow, he sniffed derisively.
The Arcane Golden Bell appeared in its true form beneath Lu Yun’s feet. Ugly cracks snaked through the signature treasure of the Qing Clan, a sign that it’d been… destroyed.
Fangyang Xing had demolished a dao immortal treasure with a single slash!
Lu Yun’s expression turned broodingly dark. If he hadn’t summoned the bell at the last moment just now, he would’ve been killed.
I won’t even have the chance to react once he passes his tribulation. I’d be dead as soon as the thought occurs to me. The gap between us is too great.
Lu Yun’s heart still quailed from the destruction of the dao-grade treasure. The Arcane Golden Bell was a defensive item that should’ve been almost invincible. But it’d cracked so easily beneath Fangyang Xing’s attack, even though he wasn’t a true immortal yet.
His combat arts are flawless, the full strength of which can only be brought to bear by a void-ascended immortal.
More importantly, even though the Arcane Golden Bell was so powerful that it stumped even origin dao immortals, it was nothing but a false immortal treasure in the eyes of void-ascended immortals. It’d been forged by the Qing ancestor himself—a powerful man, but a false immortal nonetheless.
Ascending to the dao immortal realm meant nothing without experiencing the void realm, making the immortal dao within the bell incomplete.
Fangyang Xing stalked toward Lu Yun, sword raised at the ready.
“I will let you live if you erase this memory yourself.” Fangyang Xing looked at Lu Yun. “You are an initiate in the path of sword dao. It is not your dao, but that makes you a rare talent even by the standards of the Firmament Palace. We highly value people like you.”
Fangyang Xing’s words hit a nerve and Lu Yun’s heart skipped a beat. “There are other cultivators in the Firmament Palace who have discovered sword dao?”
“What do you think? Anyone who has trod the path of sword dao throughout history comes to the palace.” Fangyang Xing smiled faintly. “Erase your memory, and I will guarantee your entrance to the Firmament Palace upon your death.”
Lu Yun’s expression darkened. “After my death?”
“Naturally, you will die.” Fangyang Xing glanced at Violetgrave. “Not only because you’re the owner of Violetgrave, but also because you’re a genius. As the top genius of the world of immortals, your fate is already written. You will die.
“Of course, you will die here and now if you don’t erase your memory of the tower, and your soul will be scattered, depriving you of a chance to reincarnate!” The sword in his raised hand glowed a faint blue. “I walk the path of sword dao as well—void sword dao!”
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Hey guys, please sound off in the comments if further clarification about a term is confusing. I've been using void-realm immortal to indicate any immortal who ascends after going through the void realm. In this chapter, we see a further delineation between those who've done so VS those who've done so AND pass their tribulation. Ergo, in the future void-realm immortal will mean the former, and void-ascended immortal will mean those who've also passed their tribulation. Does that make sense? Are prior mentions confusing?