Chapter 690: Lightning Rods Gone Rogue

The vast expanse of the West Sea was located at the western edge of the world. Once the center of everyone’s attention, the monster spirit court that’d ruled the West Sea for eighty thousand years was one day silently overthrown almost overnight, the coup so swift that not a single rumor leaked abroad.

As for her then-emperor, a peak arcane dao immortal powerhouse, he’d been killed in a single blow and refined into a replica.

On a deserted island at the westernmost part of the waters, three hundred and sixty-five lightning rods were positioned in a mysterious formation, sparkling dazzlingly beneath the sun. In the middle of this array sat a man clad in blue. Beside him was stuck a sword into the ground at a jaunty angle: the Sword of Chaos.

Once powerful beyond measure, it now gave off an incomplete, imperfect feeling, as though it was missing a vital part—its heart.

The heart of the Sword Chaos was in Zhao Wushuang’s possession. But in the past, she’d been under the protection of Exalted Celestial Emperor Zhao Luo. And now, she’d taken shelter in the safety of Dusk Province, moving her out of Dongfang Hao’s reach.

Even so, his strength was bound to grow in spades after his ascension to immortality, and he vowed to find a way to take the sword heart back. 

……

“The kid probably knew a long time ago that you would come to his tribulation, so he’s deployed many killing formations in advance and is waiting for you to walk right into his trap.” Holy Lord Ashu stood beside Lu Yun, both of them transformed into infinitesimal particles standing on a speck of dust floating in the air.

Ashu continued with a frown, “The killing formations look to be the strongest ones of the ancient divine court. They might only be partial reconstructions, but you shouldn’t underestimate them. Even if I recovered my full essence, it’d still be difficult for me to withdraw unscathed.”

“Oh?” Xing Chen, Lu Yun’s replica, turned to look at Ashu.

“If you want to stop him from passing his tribulation, you’ll have to get creative. For example, why don’t you lure other powerhouses here like he did against you?” Ashu replied after a moment of silence.

“Lure other powerhouses here? What for?” Lu Yun shook his head. “If he wants to undergo his tribulation, I’ll leave him to it… It’s not like I’m trying to stop him.”

“Then... why are you here?” Ashu blinked in confusion. Was the lad just here to spectate? To personally witness Sword Divine’s ascension to immortality?

As a cultivator, Sword Divine’s strength had been above Lu Yun’s, and as an immortal… he’d still hold the upper hand, in all likelihood. 

Letting such a dangerous foe develop unimpeded? That didn’t sound like Lu Yun’s style at all. But for his part, the young governor merely stood on the speck of dust and silently observed Dongfang Hao from afar.

“I came to see what tricks he has hidden up his sleeve.”

……

Dongfang Hao had spent a long time preparing for this tribulation. In fact, he’d begun his preparations ever since his failure to ‘borrow’ another’s tribulation. To stop disruptions from ill-intentioned people, he’d deployed many traps in advance. 

One thousand and eighty-eight killing formations were hidden nearby. Together, the combination formed the strongest killing formation known to the ancient divines. Even if the nine celestial emperors from the previous generation were to arrive, they’d find themselves powerless to interfere with his tribulation.

“I wonder if Lu Yun will come… I certainly hope he does.” Dongfang Hao took a deep breath. At first, he’d left Lu Yun alive for use as a whetstone, a rival with which to motivate himself. But now, he was slowly losing control of this tool.

More importantly, he wanted Qing Yu. He already had three sword gods in his service: Wu Tulong, Zichen, and Mo Qitian, all of them dao sovereigns as anointed by the Dao Flower.

If he could also bring Dao Sovereign Qing Yu into the fold and add her to that list, he could use these four masters, along with another existence, to rule over the immortal dao. Then, he’d slowly supplant it and become the master ruling over all of this world. 

Lu Yun, that former whetstone of his, had become the last hurdle to his grand scheme.

Wu Tulong is also progressively getting out of control. It seems I need to find time to refine another soul seed and plant it inside him. Random thoughts flitted through his mind.

Unbeknownst to him, unease had begun taking hold inside his heart. He carefully studied the lightning rods inserted beside him. These were all one-time-use and would be destroyed once his tribulation was over.

He’d examined them individually and even used the Sword of Chaos to scan them, but found no formations or restrictions on the rods, nor any consciousness hidden inside. The judgment of the Sword of Chaos was infallible—no one was controlling these lightning rods from afar, nor had anyone left anything hidden inside. More importantly, Lu Yun wouldn’t ruin his own business brand.

Why else would Dongfang Hao have spent such a large sum to buy three hundred and sixty-five lightning rods? Of course, as a prudent man, he’d brought them indirectly from Dusk Province through unrelated people, or second-hand from previous buyers.

Boom!

The sky trembled violently. Thick tribulation clouds quickly materialized in the sky, dyeing the entire dome a dark red. Soon, navy bolts of lightning snaked through the clouds. 

“It’s not the Diabolical Tribulation of World Refinement!” Dongfang Hao sprang to his feet and looked at the dark-blue lightning above, his voice soft as a whisper. “It’s the Navy Thunder of World Extinction!” 

This was a phenomenon comparable in magnitude to the Diabolical Tribulation of World Refinement, but also as different as night from day... 

The Diabolical Tribulation of World Refinement was a prison in which countless demons were shackled. When the lightning struck, demons arrived in the world to tear apart the tribulation’s target.

As for the Navy Thunder of World Extinction… it was simple destruction in its purest form. With the infinite power of lightning, it destroyed its target… and everyone else in the process!

“What a pity it’s not a heavenly judgment. Is Lu Yun truly better than me?” Dongfang Hao tightly knit his brows together, taking exception to the notion.

While Lu Yun’s phenomenon of ascension had seemed insignificant, that strange, gigantic snake had made the Sword of Chaos tremble.

During Lu Yun’s phenomenon of ascension, when a purple aura four hundred kilometers across had come from the east, Dongfang Hao had clearly observed an ephemeral six-colored radiance flickering in and out of existence as well. That light must have been Lu Yun’s true phenomenon of ascension, but it’d been promptly concealed by something.

After all, heavenly judgments were the strongest tribulations of them all. While the Navy Thunder of World Extinction was strong, it didn’t deserve to be mentioned in the same breath.

Boom! Boom! Boom!

Divine thunder welled up in the sky and roared into fearsome, gigantic beasts, and the claps of thunder gradually turned into bestial howls. A second later, lightning struck from above. A dark-blue lightning dragon slithered down from the heavens and cruelly struck at Dongfang Hao.

Bzzzt.

Three hundred and sixty-five lightning rods lit up at the same time, producing a dreamy radiance. They disintegrated the lightning dragon before it could touch him, reducing it to sparks that streamed toward the iron.

“It really works!” Dongfang Hao’s eyes lit up, his fears finally allayed.

But suddenly, the unexpected happened!

The dreamy glow around the lightning bolts winked out, and the previously diffused lightning coalesced back into a dragon and pounced on him, baring its fangs and brandishing its claws.

Caught by surprise by the sudden attack, Dongfang Hao was blasted away like a broken kite!

“Lu Yun… you tricked me!!” he screamed in anger. He’d sensed Lu Yun’s presence on the premises!


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etvolare's Thoughts

Yah guys, I know thunder doesn't have a color. We going all wee-woo mysterious here.

And, I'm looking forward to DFH getting some noice face-slapping here. C'mon Lu Yun.