Chaåter 125: Returning to the Blood Pagoda
After leaving the academy, Xu Min finally felt he was on the right way again. He had remembered what was important to him, and he knew that he would never find happiness and peace again if he did not exact revenge.
While Xu Min was walking through the forest, he was no longer the smiling and docile person he had been in the academy. The aura around him was sharp as a drawn blade; his eyes were clear and filled with boundless hate and killing intent.
Making their way through the forest, Xu Min, Cao Cao, and Ye Ling came across many magical beasts. However, the majority left as soon as they felt Xu Min and his group appear, disappearing as fast as they could.Only a few had the guts to stay after feeling the killing intent erupting from the three friends. Those who did stay were slain with no second thought.
Soon the killing intent which permeated the air around Xu Min also contained the scent of blood. Fewer and fewer beasts appeared in front of the small group of three.
Even seventh-ranked beasts would shy away from these three. Not only was the killing intent so intense, but also these three experts moved together. Even though they were of a lower rank, the fierceness they displayed was truly frightening.
The path leading to the Blood Pagoda was not well traveled. All the beasts that lived in this area were at most the seventh rank as it was not too deep into the Immortal Valley. Ye Ling knew his way around the Immortal Valley as he had lived there his entire life and made sure that they avoided every family of beast along the way. Although Ye Ling, Cao Cao, and Xu Min were fierce, they might have trouble to fight a full family on their own.
The travel through the Immortal Valley did not take too long. Knowing his way around it only took them nine days to reach the Blood Pagoda. During that time Xu Min had broken through to the seventh star. Defeating one beast after another had solidified his foundations but also boosted his potential.
Reaching the Blood Pagoda, Xu Min was filled with expectations. Last time he had entered the Blood Pagoda he had become much stronger. Becoming one more rank higher, he he he would be ready to face off against the Zhong, family leader.
Xu Min had many tricks up his sleeve. He possessed all the stances that he had stolen from the internal experts in the Immortal Valley Rankings, all of which were of high quality and allowed for him to become a real internal expert with many attacks that others could not compete against.
He also had his external strength where he could become one with the world. He had his sword which could absorb energies and help him go berserk.
Finally,t he also had the spiritual energy from the elf he had consumed and the elemental affinities of wind and fire.
All these things combined made him incredibly strong. So strong in fact that he should be able to compete with anyone below the rank of an Immortal. Though Xu Min assumed that the Zhong family leader had become an eight-star Warrior, he was certain that he did not have the talent to become an Immortal, at least not with the time he had been given.
Reaching the Blood Pagoda, Cao Cao was deeply disturbed while looking at it. It was filled with an eerie atmosphere and heavy air. One could see that it was not a place where one would venture in without knowing about it beforehand.
Seeing this tower again, Xu Min was not filled with dread but intense excitement. He understood that many geniuses had died in the Blood Pagoda, but he also knew that great threats came with great benefits and the more dangerous it was, the stronger he would become.
"I am going to enter. I don't know how long I will be inside for," Xu Min said to Cao Cao and Ye Ling. His voice was honest as he looked at the tall Blood Pagoda with anticipation. "I don't even know if I will come back out again. We have the beast contract between us, so if I am to die, you will know. If I die, I hope you will help me gain revenge in my stead."
Xu Min could not let go of the revenge he had to take. Even if he died, he needed to know that someone else would take his revenge. The two beasts, who had been with him for years already, both nodded their heads. If Xu Min truly died, they would gain strength until they were so strong that they could slaughter the Zhong family, its young master, and its leader.
Seeing that these two agreed, Xu Min felt much calmer. He was going to do anything in his power to stay alive, but if he failed he knew that his revenge would not be completely forgotten.
Still, he wished to take revenge himself. If he wanted others to take the revenge for him, then he would have asked Mu Jianyao or Wang Li. He wanted to kill these people on his own, to make them suffer and to make them become buried with his sister! It was him who had to take this revenge for the peace of his mind!
Sighing deeply and steadying himself, Xu Min looked at the Blood Pagoda. He understood that he could not let his emotions get the better of him before he entered this building.He needed a moment to calm himself.
"I'm going," he said determined to Cao Cao and Ye Ling, who both looked at Xu Min with eyes blazing with excitement. They had seen Xu Min produce one miracle after another, and both of them expected him to produce yet another miracle. Expected of him to return many times stronger than he had been before!
Xu Min opened his closed eyes and breathed out. With determination, he stepped forward and moved to the door of the Blood Pagoda. Entering the tower, a shiver ran through his body, and he appeared on the same platform where he had fought so many experts in the past.
In front of him was the set of stairs that led to the second floor and Xu Min stepped up on top of it, reaching the floor above.
"Welcome back mortal soul!" the familiar voice sounded out once more. The force behind the voice made even Xu Min's decisive soul shudder beneath the immense pressure.
Xu Min said nothing; he just cupped his hands and bowed deeply towards the Blood Pagoda itself. He knew that the voice he heard was the soul of the pagoda.
As to what this soul was, Xu Min was rather curious. It was clearly not a mortal soul, considering how it spoke to Xu Min, referring his soul as mortal. However, was it the soul of an immortal that had died, or what is it a new type of soul?.
Xu Min was curious, but he said nothing, asked nothing and did not even hint at his curiosity. He had his priorities straight, what mattered was not what kind of soul this master of the Blood Pagoda was, but to become stronger and capable of gaining revenge upon the Zhong family.
"Well done, most would ask questions, but you did not. Even though you are curious, your curiosity does not control you. I give you credit for this," the voice suddenly boomed out again, shocking Xu Min.
"I do not care about what you use your strength for." the voice of the pagoda spoke out once more. No matter whether Xu Min spoke or not, his deepest thoughts were laid bare to this pagoda.
"For some reason, I am very talkative today," the pagoda said casually, " I will tell you about myself, and why I don't care what you use your power for."
"I guess you could say that I am the soul of this blood pagoda. More correctly, I think you should say that I am a martial soul."
"A martial soul is an amalgamation of all the souls which have died within this tower."
"Originally this tower had no soul. This was a place where elves and fairies would have their death battles. As more and more people died, more and more souls started to gather within this tower."
"These souls slowly merged with one another, and became the soul of the tower."
"However, We became bored. Not many experts came to fight us any longer, and we were just stuck here. Hearing that every year a specific amount of experts would come and fight we were swayed and said yes."
"Fighters no longer had to battle each other; they came to fight the souls of the deceased. The elves and fairies decided to make it into a training ground. They came to converse with us; they would send a group of experts every year. In return for us training them they would give us endless treasures in return and vice versa. We used them to train us as well."
"We were showered in treasures. Many experts came to fight every single year. Of these experts at least a few would leave their little lives with us and merge with our soul, strengthening us. One day it all stopped. One day the elves and fairies no longer came to participate in the fights, and we lost our entertainment."
"Years went by before magical beasts appeared. The lions appeared, and they decided to use our trials to temper their young ones. Not many of their offspring survived entering the Blood Pagoda. Nonetheless, they were beasts; they had many children. Losing half of them was nothing much."
"Fortunately these lions were quite intelligent, and they too became part of our strength."
"Who would have expected that a human boy would appear, a human boy who would absorb the energy of our soul. You consumed the soul of an elf. This absorption was very similar to how we absorb. It feels familiar. Your sword feels familiar to us."
"But now you understand. The reason we told you is on account of the hate within your heart. It is because of the hate that urges to get revenge that we needed to tell you because the chance of you leaving this tower is incredibly slim. The more hate you have, the harder the last trial will become. You have way more hate than any other being we have ever encountered."
"But before this, you need to get the reward for the trial which you just completed."
"We gave you a task of returning to us after becoming a seven-star warrior. To think you did it as swiftly as you did, we are quite amazed. The reward will be even bigger now that you did it as swiftly as you did. However, if you take this reward, you have to attempt the final trial. As to whether or not you survive, it is up to your ability."
"You can of course also choose to give up now, turn away and not be given another chance at the rewards as well as the chance to become a peerless genius."