The golden tree faded away, but many still reeled from or savored the awe-inspiring sight.
“Who was it?!” growled the Exalted celestial emperor. “Their phenomenon of ascension spanned the entire world… Investigate! We must find out who that was!”
What they’d witnessed weighed heavily on them. The bigger the phenomenon, the greater one’s potential, and the higher the heights they would reach.
How talented must the cultivator be for their phenomenon to cover the entire world and beyond? The ramifications were beyond their imaginations. More importantly, the phenomenon had originated in Exalted Major!
This led the Exalted immortals to believe that someone had seized the opening when everyone was focused on Zhao Wushuang’s tribulation to overcome theirs without being disturbed, making fools out of them all.
To their great surprise, a cyan beam of light suddenly erupted from the center of the Divine Sea and projected an image that shadowed every facet of the world as well!
However, it slightly paled in comparison to the golden tree from earlier. While this phenomenon of ascension reached all twenty-four facets of the world, it didn’t reach the four seas connecting them.
“Zhao Wushuang’s ascended to immortality? How did he defeat the terrifying tribulation beast?!”
“How is this possible?!” The Primus and Enlightened celestial emperors were dumbfounded. With the phenomenon of ascension manifested, they wouldn’t be able to hurt Zhao Wushuang even if their true selves were present.
Moreover, they were in Exalted Major, and Zhao Wushuang was the Exalted celestial emperor’s junior brother. The Exalted heavenly army had now gathered, accompanied by many powerful protectors in the major. It was set in stone—Zhao Wushuang had overcome his trial.
Meanwhile, the disguised prince herself was confused. She had no idea why the great chimera had disintegrated so suddenly and entered her body, not as divine tribulation essence, but four beams of light. They seemed to have made something whole inside of her that’d been incomplete before.
As for her phenomenon of ascension...
The images of the Azure Dragon, White Tiger, Vermilion Bird, and Black Tortoise intertwined in midair, foreclaws upraised in support of a luminous orb.
It took a long while for the phenomenon to dissipate. Zhao Wushuang hovered in the air all this time, radiating a strangely imposing aura. She was now a true immortal, one that had ascended from the void realm.
However, she was much more powerful than other void-ascended immortals. Every move of hers contained the power of heaven and earth, and a different kind of force brewed within her.
“Die!” a sudden snarl rang out.
The lakewaters beneath her feet surged as a giant figure rushed out. He possessed the upper body of a human, lower body of a dragon, and deep blue light flickering all over him.
A sea divine!
The most powerful of the sea divines made his move the moment Zhao Wushuang successfully ascended, stabbing at the human’s head with a deadly trident.
“You court death!!” The Exalted celestial emperor widened his eyes so ferociously that the corners threatened to crack.
Mightiest of his tribe, the patriarch of the sea divines was a crippled origin dao immortal. Even the Exalted celestial emperor would have some difficulty defeating him. Having just set foot into immortality, Zhao Wushuang was far from his match. His ambush had almost reached her when—
“Hahaha! Sea divines!!” An enormous shadow suddenly propelled itself up from the depths of the Divine Sea, pungent maw yawning wide open to bite at the patriarch.
“What is this?!” Panicking, the patriarch’s trident had just about touched Zhao Wushuang when the large mouth from the depths below bit into his dragon tail and dragged him down.
The Divine Sea exploded again as an enormous fur seal more than five hundred meters long leapt out and swallowed the sea divine. It munched and gnawed on its prey, the patriarch’s deep blue blood filling its mouth as tormented screams rang out.
“This seat saved the life of your junior brother, Celestial Emperor of Exalted Major. Remember what you’ve promised us, and not a crystal shard less! Since the sea divine tribe betrayed your major, this seat will help you with some housecleaning and kill them all!”
The fur seal dove deep into the Divine Sea, bringing about a great powerful wave with a twist of its body.
“No!” Zhao Wushuang blanched, but she couldn’t stop the barbaric fur seal. Being too injured to intervene, the Exalted celestial emperor could only watch the slaughter of sea divines occur right beneath his nose.
“Hahaha! You’re here, father!” Ge Yanxia brayed with laughter. The giant fur seal was her father, the greatest of their clan. He was a real arcane dao immortal from the Primordial Era! Not even a true origin dao immortal like the previous Exalted celestial emperor would be his match, let alone a crippled one.
Things gradually settled down in this corner of the world.
Zhao Wushuang, junior ‘brother’ of the Exalted celestial emperor, had successfully weathered his tribulation, and his resulting phenomenon of ascension had shadowed a shocking twenty-four facets.
Though that should’ve placed him as the greatest among his peers, the subsequent golden tree manifestation completely overshadowed him. There was more discussion in the general public about who’d triggered the golden tree than the Exalted prince’s breakthrough.
Lu Yun had returned, and with him came a Sal Tree of Life and Death newly evolved into the Karmic Tree. Ever more crystalline and translucent, the tree seemed sculpted from gold and jade, and the energy of virtuous merit contained in the karmic fruits was purer as well.
“The prisoners trapped within the void have been purified into Hell Flowers.” Lu Yun immediately realized what had happened upon a quick inspection of hell.
Hell Flowers carpeted the region of hell touched by light, their buds fostering pure souls. Once the flowers matured, the soul within would become a new native.
“Shouldn’t we do something, Lu Yun?”
Within the small manor that Lu Yun and Qing Yu resided in, three peak aether dao immortals and a group of humanoid beings dressed in strange clothes snuck around, carefully looking for something.
Or rather, they thought they were looking for something, but had in fact fallen prey to the little fox’s illusions.
The bell she'd acquired in the celestial master tomb had raised her skill with illusions to even greater heights, and peak aether dao immortals were no longer a match for her. The immortals and humanoid creatures were here to take Qing Yu, but the little fox had managed to trap them first.
“Of course we should.” The couple shared conspiratory grins.
Lu Yun contacted Wanfeng with a transmission talisman. “Have the Skandha Range spread rumors via their planted agents, Wanfeng. Tell the world that the phenomenon of ascension covering the entire world belonged to Sword Divine, and that Sword Divine’s true identity is Dongfang Hao!”