Chapter 1197: Grand Marriage

The cultivation world of the Heavenly South Region was in an uproar once again.

Some of the Nascent Soul Stage elders of the major cultivation sects had suddenly received invitations from the Drifting Cloud Sect once again. On this occasion, they were being invited to attend the official dual cultivation ceremony between the number one cultivator of the Heavenly South Region, Han Li, and the Nascent Soul Stage female cultivator, Nangong Wan, who had been out of the public eye for a long time.

Aside from those who were already aware of Han Li's relationship with Nangong Wan, all of the Nascent Soul cultivators who received the invitation were extremely surprised. However, with Han Li's current resounding reputation, no one dared to turn down his invitation. The three other great cultivators of the Heavenly South Region were unable to attend in person to the fact that they were all in seclusion, but they sent their disciples to offer precious congratulatory presents.

It was said in the few days leading up to the commencement of the ceremony, the entire sky above the Dreamcloud Mountains had been enshrouded under extremely exuberant five-colored light. Intricate buildings of light also appeared out of thin air on the mountains, and under the effect of the restriction, all of the plants on the entire mountain ranges were in full bloom, making the Dreamcloud Mountains appear as it were an ethereal immortal realm.

The three sects on the Dreamcloud Mountains as well as some nearby smaller sects that were trying to suck up to Han Li had worked tirelessly to prepare for this ceremony, making it an even grander and more illustrious occasion than the celebration ceremony held when Han Li became a great cultivator.

Aside from the cultivators of the major sects who had received invitations from the Drifting Cloud Sect, some cultivators from other smaller sects as well as many renowned vagrant cultivators attended the ceremony, offering presents of their own.

During the few days when the ceremony was held, around 5,000 to 6,000 cultivators outside of the Dreamcloud Mountains flocked to the scene, most of whom were high-grade cultivators. It was the most spectacular ceremony held in the Heavenly South Region for the past 1,000 years.

However, that was no surprise.

Back when Han Li had become a great cultivator, many people had attended the celebratory ceremony to congratulate him, but most of them harbored doubts in their hearts about the authenticity of his claim. Furthermore, there were still three other great cultivators in the Heavenly South Region as well. However, following the sparring match held during that celebratory ceremony, Han Li had well and truly cemented himself as the number one cultivator of the Heavenly South Region.

It was said that Han Li could face two great cultivators at once and still easily gain the upper hand, and this was quite a harrowing notion to all of the sects in the Heavenly South Region.

This indicated that if Han Li didn't have to worry about his own sect, he was powerful enough on his own to steamroll any cultivation sect in the entire region. 

No sect in the Heavenly South Region could possess more than two great cultivators among their ranks, so there was no power in the entire region that could contend with Han Li.

As such, regardless of whether these sects had ties with the Drifting Cloud Sect or not in the past, all of them had sent people to the ceremony in an attempt to establish better relations with Han Li's sect. As for the high-grade vagrant cultivators, they wanted to make the acquaintance of this number one cultivator in the Heavenly South Region, hoping that Han Li would be kind enough to offer them some guidance in their cultivation.

As such, countless cultivators had arrived to attend the ceremony from the three sects, as well as outside of the Dreamcloud Mountains, making it truly a ceremony for the ages.

Han Li and Nangong Wan didn't appear at the ceremony for a very long time. The two of them merely delivered a grateful address to all of the cultivators gathered at the ceremony, then engaged in a formal exchange of cups of wine between bride and groom before departing from the scene.

Everything else thereafter was obviously left to Lü Luo, and he rose to the occasion; even though the two stars of the show weren't present, he was still able to make the rest of the ceremony an extremely lively and bustling occasion.

The ceremony lasted a total of three to four days before finally drawing to the conclusion.

Most of the cultivators who had arrived to offer their congratulations began to depart, but there were a few among them who refrained from leaving.

...

Han Li and a white-robed Nangong Wan stood side by side on the summit of the main peak of the interconnected peaks. Neither of them said anything, but their silence was more meaningful than a 1,000 words. 

After a long while, Nangong Wan tucked a few stray strands of hair behind her ear before turning to Han Li with a gorgeous smile.

"Looks like every cloud really does have a silver lining; through cultivating the Youthful Celestial Moon, I was finally able to progress to the mid-Nascent Soul Stage. Of course, I have to thank you for your assistance as well. The Imperial Elixir that you fed me saved me at least a dozen years of arduous cultivation. Without it, I could still be trapped in that seal. Speaking of progression, I'm very surprised that you were able to reach the late-Nascent Soul Stage so quickly. With your current powers, you'll be invincible in the human world as long as you don't encounter those few Deity Transformation Stage old monsters, right?"

"Invincible? I wouldn't dare to say that. Perhaps there exists another Nascent Soul cultivator in the human world who stands above me." Han Li gave a modest smile in response.

"Heehee, I don't believe that! What came as a quite a surprise to me was just how insidious this Soul Seal Curse was; I thought that the power within the inner core of the Ancient Flame Toad would be able to lift this curse, but who would've thought that there were a few additional restrictions lying dormant within my body this entire time? Thank heavens the true method to lift the curse was used in advance. Otherwise, I would've been in deep trouble." Nangong Wan's eyes were shimmering with a seductive light.

Han Li turned to Nangong Wan with a smile, and replied, "That was also a massive load taken off my shoulders. It appears that my trip to the Great Jin was worth it. After this, you should take the Nascent Cultivating Pill I gave you last time. With the assistance of that pill, it might be possible for you to progress to the late-Nascent Soul Stage as well."

"Is that Nascent Cultivating Pill really that miraculous? It can even assist in a breakthrough to the late-Nascent Soul Stage?" Nangong Wan seemed to be a little skeptical.

"Hehe, quite a few mid-Nascent Soul cultivators in the Great Jin perished for this pill; do you think they would give their lives for a hoax?" Han Li replied with a chuckle.

"Alright, then after I fortify my mid-Nascent Soul Stage cultivation base, I'll take the pill and attempt another breakthrough." Nangong Wan pursed her lips in a faint smile as a seductive yet exuberant light danced in her eyes.

Han Li looked at his Dao Companion's exquisite features, then thought back to the intimacy they had shared during the past few days, and a scorching impulse suddenly welled up in the pit of his stomach. Just as he was about to say something, his expression suddenly changed as he turned and cast his gaze toward the distant sky. Nangong Wan faltered slightly before also turning her attention toward the same direction.

A few moments later, a streak of white light broke through the restriction in the distance before flying directly toward Han Li's duo.

Han Li's eyes flashed with a hint of surprise, seemingly having already identified who their visitor was.

The streak of white light circled around in the sky before descending onto the ground. The light then receded to reveal a gorgeous woman; it was none other than Mu Peiling.

"Mu Peiling pays her respects to her lord and Big Sister Nangong!" Mu Peiling extended a respectful salute toward the two of them.

"Little Sister Peiling, why have you come here from the sect in such a hurry even though the ceremony is already over? Could it be that there's something Senior Martial Brother Lü couldn't take care of, so he's requesting our assistance?" Nangong Wan asked.

"Big Sister Nangong, there are some guests who still haven't left following the conclusion of the ceremony. All of them proclaim that they're acquaintances of my lord, and wish to see him. Senior Martial Brother Lü was unsure of whether my lord would like to entertain these guests, so he sent me here as a messenger. If my lord doesn't wish to see them, then he'll ask them to leave," Mu Peiling explained.

"Acquaintances of yours? Could they perhaps be a group of beautiful female cultivators?" Nangong Wan took a glance at Han Li with an amused smile on her face.

Mu Peiling cast a surreptitious glance toward Han Li before biting down on her lower lip as she nodded. "Indeed, Big Sister Nangong, the guests in question are all female."

"Oh? Looks like your former lovers have come to find you." Nangong Wan rolled her eyes at Han Li.

"Former lovers? Ahem, please don't make such jokes, Wan'er. Peiling, have you asked those guests for their names?" Han Li cleared his throat with a rather awkward look before turning to Mu Peiling with an inquisitive glance.

"I have. One of them is a woman Ghost Spirit Sect with the surname of Yan, and she's being accompanied by two Ghost Spirit Sect elders. The other two are a female cultivator from the Controlling Spirit Sect by the name of Han Yunzhi, and Dong Xuan'er from the Harmonious Bond Sect," Mu Peiling replied.

"It's them?" Han Li faltered slightly upon hearing this.

Nangong Wan raised an eyebrow as she chuckled, "Looks like they really are acquaintances of yours. You should go and meet them; it'd be rude to keep them waiting for too long."

Han Li paused for a moment before nodding as he instructed, "These are all acquaintances from well before I reached the Nascent Soul Stage, and I wouldn't mind meeting them. Peiling, go and inform Senior Martial Brother Lü that I'll be there soon. In the meantime, get them to wait for me in two different guest pavilions and I'll meet them separately."

"Yes. I'll be taking my leave then." Mu Peiling extended a respectful bow before flying away as a streak of white light.

Meanwhile, Han Li looked on at her departing figure, and his brows furrowed slightly.

Nangong Wan noticed the minute changes in Han Li's expression, and she smiled as she asked, "Why the long face? Are you displeased with Little Sister Peiling?"

Han Li clasped his hands behind his back as he shook his head, and said, "No, it's just that I don't really understand why you decided to accept her as your sister. I originally intended for her to become your disciple."

"What's wrong with having Peiling as a sister? I only want to pursue the Great Dao with you, so I'm not interested in taking any disciples. Also, her past is kind of similar to mine, and I quite like her. Instead of placing her in the awkward position of being my disciple, I thought it was a much better idea to make her my sister instead. That way, regardless of whether you want to make her your concubine or your disciple in the future, no one will be able to say anything about it," Nangong Wan explained in a warm manner.

"We'll do as you say, then. I'm going to go and see my visitors now," Han Li replied nonchalantly.

"Come back soon; I'll be waiting for you in my cave abode," Nangong Wan said with a faint smile.

A wry smile appeared on Han Li's face upon hearing this.

"Wan'er, the Youthful Celestial Moon you're cultivating sure is quite interesting in that the power of the Yin moon is required to cultivate it. In that case, a special formation will need to be set up in order to gather this power. However, the power of the Yin moon is very detrimental to other cultivators, so no one can cultivate around you. It's a real pity that I'm unable to cultivate in the same cave abode as you because of this. "

"At the time I was drawn to the power of this cultivation art, and I didn't anticipate that it would be so troublesome," Nangong Wan replied with an apologetic expression.

"I'm just a little disappointed, but thankfully, we only have to be apart when we're cultivating. Besides, our two cave abodes are really close anyway, so we can share a cave abode whenever we're not cultivating; it really doesn't make much of a difference. Alright, I'll have to go and entertain my guests now; I'll be back soon." Han Li offered some words of consolation before flying away from the main peak as a streak of azure light.

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