Mu Peiling was standing outside one of the dozen or so guest pavilions within the Drifting Cloud Sect, and she would occasionally glance up into the distant sky.
All of a sudden, azure light flashed from afar before flying through the air, descending before this pavilion in the blink of an eye.
As soon Han Li arrived in front of the pavilion, Mu Peiling made her way over to him, and whispered, "Mu Peiling pays her respects to her Lord! The Ghost Spirit Sect cultivators are currently resting within the pavilion, and the other two women are in that building over there. "
Han Li glanced at the pavilion behind Mu Peiling, then at another nearby building, and he nodded with a calm expression as he said, "Alright, you can go now."
Mu Peiling extended a respectful curtsey before flying away as a streak of white light.
Han Li's body swayed, and he appeared at the entrance to the pavilion. He swept his spiritual sense through the interior of the building before walking in in an unhurried manner.
Within the hall on the first floor of the pavilion, there were two men and a woman sitting together while discussing something. One of the men was a stickly thin yellow-robed man, while the other was an elderly man with abnormally pale features. Their female counterpart was a beautiful young woman who appeared to be around 20 years of age; she was none other than Yan Yan'er.
The three of them were currently locked in a heated discussion, and the urgency in their eyes was quite apparent.
As Han Li stepped into the hall, all three of them immediately turned to him in unison. They then rose to their feet with expressions of surprise and elation to welcome Han Li.
Before the three of them had a chance to say anything, Han Li abruptly appeared on a wooden chair across from them. He waved a nonchalant hand, and said, "There's no need for formalities, Fellow Daoists. Let's all take a seat."
None of the three were able to identify how he had approached them so quickly.
The elderly man's heart jolted upon seeing this, but he quickly put on a smile as he nodded in response.
Thus, the three of them sat down again.
Han Li examined the young woman, who had become even more beautiful since their last encounter, and a smile appeared on his face as he said, "Long time no see, Fairy Yan; you've finally reached the Nascent Soul Stage. We'll be able to refer to one another as equals now."
This woman was none other than the number one female cultivator among the younger generation in the State of Yue. She had also successfully reached the Nascent Soul Stage.
"Thank you for your kind words, Fellow Daoist Han. I've only recently reached the Nascent Soul Stage, yet you're already the number one cultivator in the Heavenly South Region; how can I possibly compare to you? I've come here with a request for your help, Brother Han." Yan Yan'er examined Han Li carefully as a complex expression appeared on her beautiful features.
Han Li smiled, yet gave no reply. He cast his gaze toward the other two Ghost Spirit Sect elders, and his eyes rested on the face of the elderly man in the end.
"This fellow Daoist is Elder Zhong, right? I recall seeing you once from afar in the Devilfall Valley."
"I didn't think that Brother Han would still remember someone like me. I'm very flattered." The elderly man gave a slightly awkward chuckle upon hearing this.
"The Ghost Spirit Sect seems to be in a very perilous situation at the moment. All three of you are important figures in the sect, so why have you come all this way to meet me rather than remain in the State of Yue to protect the sect?" Han Li cut straight to the chase.
Upon seeing Han Li's no-nonsense approach, Yan Yan'er and the others looked at one another with hesitant expressions, as if they were unsure of how to proceed.
Han Li's brows furrowed slightly as a hint of displeasure appeared on his face.
Han Li's attention naturally didn't escape the notice of the trio, and the hearts of the two men jolted as they turned toward Yan Yan'er in unison.
Yan Yan'er hesitated momentarily before breaking the tense silence.
"Fellow Daoist Han, we've come here to request assistance from your sect, no, from yourself. We hope that you can assist our Ghost Spirit Sect during this time of crisis. Otherwise, our sect will most likely cease to exist in the near future."
"You want me to lend you my assistance?" Han Li raised his eyebrows as a hint of a deriding sneer appeared on his face.
"I know that our sect has wronged you in the past, Brother Han, but Sect Leader Wang was the one who was solely responsible for that incident, and he passed away in the Devilfall Valley long ago. The Ghost Spirit Sect is not being ruled over by the Wang Family anymore," the yellow-robed man hurriedly explained.
"Is that so? I seem to have heard that Wang Chan is still thriving at your sect, is that correct?" Han Li asked expressionlessly.
The expressions of both the elderly man and Yan Yan'er changed slightly upon seeing this. The yellow-robed man was also quite surprised that Han Li was aware of this detail, but he still maintained his smile as he replied, "Rest assured, Brother Han; Martial Nephew Wang Chan made a huge mistake a while ago, so he's been stripped of his role as an enforcement elder, and he's currently been held in our sect's repentance cave to repent over his mistakes. He won't be released from there for at least another 100 years."
"Repenting over his mistakes? I don't think I've seen you before, but you seem to bear a resemblance to Fairy Yan; may I ask for your name, Fellow Daoist?" Han Li was slightly surprised to hear this, but he cast his gaze toward Yan Yan'er, then back at the yellow-robed man, and a thought seemed to have occurred to him as a faint smile appeared on his face.
The yellow-robed man hesitated momentarily before replying truthfully, "You really do have a good eye, Brother Han. I'm also from the Yan Family; I'm one of Yan'er's uncles."
Yan Yan'er also nodded to confirm this notion.
Han Li stroked his chin, and asked in a meaningful voice, "Oh, so the Yan Family has two Nascent Soul cultivators now. In that case, the Yan Family must be ruling over the Ghost Spirit Sect at present, right?"
The yellow-robed man glanced at Elder Zhong before replying hesitantly, "Hehe, it's not incorrect to say that, but that duty has only fallen to our Yan Family upon Senior Martial Brother Zhong's insistence."
"Senior Martial Brother Wang and the others were clearly unfit to rule over the sect, so it's only natural that the Yan Familly should rise to the occasion," the elderly man said with a wry smile.
"Oh, is that so?" Han Li said in an absentminded manner before he fell silent, and his eyes narrowed in contemplation.
The three cultivators from the Ghost Spirit Sect didn't dare to rush Han Li, so they could only sit in silence. Yan Yan'er seemed to be contemplating something as well, while the two men were feeling extremely uneasy.
Han Li was currently the number one cultivator in the Heavenly South Region, and he had once had a vendetta against their Ghost Spirit Sect. The circumstances had changed since then, so it was very unlikely that Han Li would seek revenge against them, but they would definitely be lying if they said they weren't concerned in the slightest about being in Han Li's presence. If it weren't for the fact that the Ghost Spirit Sect had truly reached the end of the road, they wouldn't have mustered up the courage to visit the Drifting Cloud Sect.
The only person in the entire Heavenly South Region capable of saving them was Han Li. Their enemies were wary of the other great cultivators as well, but there was certainly no one more powerful and intimidating than Han Li in the Heavenly South Region.
"Even if those past events had never taken place, what makes you think that I'll help your Ghost Spirit Sect?" Han Li asked in a slightly cold voice.
Yan Yan'er immediately turned to Han Li upon hearing this, while the two men with her were ecstatic.
The three of them could all hear a hint of possibility in Han Li's voice.
The yellow-robed man took a deep breath before replying, "Brother Han, if you're willing to help our sect, our Ghost Spirit Sect will vacate the State of Yue and leave it to the other sects. All we want now is to ensure the survival of our sect. In return for your assistance, we've brought along a few presents. We hope that they would be of interest to you, Brother Han."
He then patted the storage pouch hanging from his waist, and a burst of white light radiated from within. Spiritual light swept toward the table before him, and three items appeared on the tabletop.
Han Li examined the three items with an indifferent expression to find that they were a crimson bracelet, a porcelain vial, and a green wooden box.
Han Li raised his hand and feigned a grabbing motion, upon which the three items flew through the air and landed in his grasp.
At this moment, Yan Yan'er's pleasant voice suddenly sounded.
"The porcelain vial contains the sacred medicine of our sect, the Blood Limb Pill. The pill has no other effect aside from its incredible ability to replace lost limbs. Even if a limb is completely dismembered, an identical one can be regrown after taking these pills. Due to the fact that the medicinal ingredients for these pills are very difficult to find, our sect only has around a dozen of these pills, and three of them are in that vial. The red bracelet is a lesser-known devilish treasure and was something that was carried by all the past sect leaders. However, the treasure was withdrawn by Elder Zhong after Sect Leader Wang perished in the Devilfall Valley. This devilish treasure is quite unique in that it's unable to directly attack the enemy, but you can nurture things like Yin spirits and blood ghosts within the bracelet. Those beings can become more powerful at a rapid rate through the help of the blood Qi absorbed by this bracelet, then be released to assist you in battle. As for the item in this wooden box, it's the most precious among the three treasures here." At this point, Yan Yan'er paused and looked at Han Li with a peculiar gleam in her eyes.
However, Han Li's expression remained completely unchanged, seemingly entirely disinterested in the two treasures placed before him.
Yan Yan'er heaved a faint internal sigh, but she maintained a calm expression as she continued, "I heard that you're using a wood-attribute cultivation art, Brother Han; the item in this box is a legendary Wood Spirit Bead, one of the five-elemental Spirit Gathering Beads!"
Han Li's expressionless facade immediately crumbled as he exclaimed, "Spirit Gathering Bead? You're referring to the treasures that absorb a certain type of five-elemental spiritual Qi while also repelling other types of spiritual Qi?"
"That's right. The Spirit Gathering Bead has a very similar name to the basic spirit gathering formation, and both of them serve a similar purpose. However, I trust that Brother Han is aware of the differences in their efficacy, so I won't elaborate on that subject. As for how this item compares with spirit well objects, as long as the cultivation art you're using is of the same attribute as this Spirit Gathering Bead, normal spirit well objects won't even be able to hold a candle to this bead," Yan Yan'er said in a slow voice.
Han Li's lingered on the green wooden box for a while longer, but there was a yellow restriction talisman plastered over it, so he wasn't able to glean its contents.
All of a sudden, he opened his mouth and gently exhaled toward the wooden box.
A burst of azure light immediately swept over the surface of the box, and the restriction talisman was detached. At the same time, his hand shot forth like lightning, pointing a finger directly at the lid of the box.
The wooden lid flew off of its own accord.