"According to my knowledge, Glacial Quintessence is something that can only be found at the North Night Palace. If it weren't for the fact the North Night Palace had a Deity Transformation cultivator among their ranks in the past, and that Puresun Flame Essence is extremely difficult to find, their Glacial Quintessence would've been forcibly taken long ago. The North Night Palace has since lost its Deity Transformation cultivator, but their Glacial Quintessence also disappeared many years ago. I had infiltrated the North Night Palace in person to search for it, but was unable to find it. Where did you get this Glacial Quintessence? Could it be the very same vial that the North Night Palace had lost?" Hu Qinglei interrogated?
Han Li seemed to have predicted that Hu Qinglei would ask him such a question, and he replied, "Of course not; how could there be such an unlikely coincidence? I was only able to obtain some Glacial Quintessence from the Myriad Year Profound Jade in the Profound Jade Cave of the North Night Palace's Spirit Void Hall. I won't be handing over all of it during this exchange, either, but there should be enough to make two portions of Returning Sun Water."
At this point, Hu Qinglei suddenly ceased transmitting his voice and spoke for everyone to hear. "Hmph, I don't care where you got this item from. Excessive consumption of this item will only be detrimental anyway, so I don't need any more than the bare minimum. However, if you want to offer this item in exchange for Violet Spirit's freedom, then I have another condition. If you agree to my condition, then I'll release Violet Spirit."
"What's your condition?" A hint of surprise flashed through Han Li's eyes. He wasn't expecting Hu Qinglei to impose another condition.
Hu Qinglei took a cold glance at Violet Spirit before replying, "It's quite simple; aside from giving me the item that you promised, you also have to take a single attack from me without evading nor using your Immortal Vanquishing Beads. If you can do that, then you have yourself a deal."
Xiang Zhili's expression changed slightly upon hearing this, but he quickly recomposed himself again. In contrast, Eccentric Wind was looking at Hu Qinglei with a hint of surprise in his eyes.
Everyone else also wore contrasting expressions.
Hu Qinglei's drastic change in attitude was already quite perplexing to everyone; all of them were wondering what kind of treasure Han Li could possibly be offering to elicit such a strong reaction from a Deity Transformation cultivator. However, after hearing the additional condition that Hu Qinglei was imposing, everyone was even more befuddled.
Han Li's pupils contracted as he repeated for confirmation, "I have to take an attack from you and I'm not allowed to evade?"
"That's right; that's my condition. If I don't teach you a lesson, everyone will think that anyone can just take my concubines away from me as they please!" Hu Qinglei replied in a sinister voice.
The entire palace fell silent once again as many fell into deep thought. Could it be that Hu Qinglei was trying to kill Han Li, after all? The disparity between a Nascent Soul cultivator and a Deity Transformation cultivator was an extremely drastic one. If Han Li were prohibited from evading, how was he supposed to be able to survive an attack from Hu Qinglei.
With that in mind, everyone turned their attention toward Han Li, and Violet Spirit's face paled even further.
After a brief silence, she suddenly gritted her teeth, and said in a bitter voice, "There's no need for you to do this, Brother Han. I've changed my mind; I want to stay here in the Devil Palace. You can leave on your own, Brother Han."
Han Li faltered upon hearing this before quickly gleaning her intentions.
However, before he had a chance to say anything in response, Hu Qinglei interjected in a cold voice, "Do you think my Devil Palace is an inn where you can come and go as you please? I've already agreed to this deal, so you can't stay here even if you want to. You won't turn down my condition again, will you, Fellow Daoist Han?"
Han Li shook his head with a nonchalant expression, and replied, "If it's just one attack, then I really do want to give it a shot."
Hu Qinglei chuckled as he lifted a hand and pointed a finger toward Violet Spirit.
All of a sudden, she was struck by a numb yet itchy sensation in her dantian, and she let loose an involuntary cry. Her lithe and graceful figure swayed as several black threads emerged from within her body, disappearing into Hu Qinglei's finger after circling through the air like a group of miniature spirit snakes.
Only then did Violet Spirit stand up straight again, and her expression lit up with surprise and elation as she felt her magic power circulating throughout her body. She had been unable to use her spiritual power before, but it was now gushing into her meridians. Han Li also swept his spiritual sense toward Violet Spirit upon seeing this, and a content look appeared on his face a few moments later.
The restriction within her body had indeed ceased to exist.
"Hand it over!"
As soon as he lifted the restriction in Violet Spirit's body, Hu Qinglei turned to Han Li with a cold expression.
A faint smile appeared on Han Li's face as he abruptly raised a hand, following which a streak of white light shot forth from within his sleeve.
Hu Qinglei's eyes lit up as he made a grabbing motion, drawing the streak of white light into his hand.
The white light receded to reveal a white jade vial.
Hu Qinglei swept a sleeve gently over the vial, and the lid flew off of its own accord. At the same time, rings of black light began to proliferate through the air, creating a black light barrier that prevented others from being able to ascertain the contents of the jade vial with their spiritual sense.
The precautionary measures that Hu Qinglei was taking made everyone even more curious, and even Xiang Zhili had fallen into deep thought as he stroked his beard absentmindedly.
A few moments later, Hu Qinglei had verified that it was indeed Glacial Quintessence that was stored within the vial, and a faint smile appeared on his face.
He replaced the lid of the vial before flipping his hand over, following which the vial completely disappeared.
After doing all that, he raised his head to turned his gaze toward Han Li again. The smile on his face faded, only to be replaced by a menacing expression. All of a sudden, black light flashed around his body and he abruptly transformed into a streak of black light as he flew out of the palace, leaving only a cold parting sentence in his wake.
"I'll be waiting for you outisde, Han brat. Don't make me wait too long."
Before he had finished his sentence, the streak of black light had already disappeared into the distance, but his voice continued to echo throughout the palace.
Han Li did not appear to be flustered in the slightest in the face of the daunting task that awaited him. He poured a cup of wine for himself in a leisurely manner, drinking it in a few sips before rising to his feet with a calm and collected expression.
In contrast, Violet Spirit's brows were furrowed with concern as she asked, Brother Han, are you really going to take an attack from him? He's a Deity Transformation cultivator!"
"Don't worry, if it's just one attack, then I have a good deal of confidence in myself," Han Li replied with a calm and reassuring smile.
He had managed to withstand an attack from the avatar of an Elder Devil even prior to reaching the late-Nascent Soul Stage, so he was relatively confident in his ability to take an attack from a Deity Transformation cultivator.
"Then allow me to come with you, Brother Han. I want to support you," Violet Spirit insisted with a determined look in her eyes.
Han Li hesitated momentarily at the sight of her resolute expression before nodding in the end.
Spiritual light flashed over his body as he latched onto Violet Spirit's hand, and the two of them hurtled out of the palace as a streak of azure light.
All of the other Nascent Soul cultivators also flooded out of the palace. They certainly weren't going to miss out on such a spectacular match-up.
Even the other two gorgeous female cultivators who were set to become Hu Qinglei's concubines made their way out of the palace with the other servants following a brief hesitation.
All of a sudden, Xiang Zhili and Eccentric Wind were the only ones left in the palace.
The two of them sat in silence, seemingly completely disinterested in joining everyone else.
"Brother Xiang, what do you think about this?" Eccentric Wind asked.
"What do I think about what?" Xiang Zhili responded expressionlessly.
"The treasure that Han brat offered, of course. What could he have offered to draw such a strong reaction from Fellow Daoist Hu? There aren't many things in this world that can tempt him to such an extent," Eccentric Wind chuckled coldly.
"It's just as you said; such treasures are rare, but certainly not non-existent, so what's there to be surprised about?" Xiang Zhili remained quite calm.
"Brother Xiang, are you really not interested in knowing what such a treasure was? It has to be something that could be very useful to us as well," Eccentric Wind said in a meaningful voice.
Xiang Zhili heaved a faint sigh, and replied, "So what even if that treasure was something that could help us break through our current bottlenecks or prolong our lifespans for another few centuries? Do you think making a breakthrough now will allow us to ascend to the Spirit Realm? Or do you think that we'll be able to progress to the late-Deity Transformation Stage after a few more centuries of cultivation? If not, then there's no point in distracting ourselves with such inconsequential matters. We should instead be focusing solely on searching for a spatial node. You and I will have a chance at attaining immortality as long as we can find a suitable spatial node; everything else is trivial in comparison. "
Following a brief period of contemplation, a wry smile appeared on Eccentric Wind's face as he said, "You're right, Brother Xiang. I was led astray by my greed there. In reality, regardless of what that treasure was, there's no chance that we'd be able to get our hands on it now that it's in Fellow Daoist Hu's possession. In any case, it appears that he has no intention of disclosing what the treasure was to anyone. I'm more concerned now that he asked that Han brat to take an attack of his; he's not trying to take advantage of this opportunity to kill Han Li, is he?"
"It'll be fine; I already warned Fellow Daoist Hu against killing Han Li earlier. Besides, Junior Martial Brother Han must be quite confident in his own abilities. Otherwise, he wouldn't have agreed to this condition. Having said that, Fellow Daoist Hu has always been quite volatile and unpredictable, so we should still go and have a look in case any mishaps arise. It'll be really bad for us if he hurts Han Li in a moment of madness."With that in mind, Xiang Zhili's brows furrowed, and he suddenly wasn't as calm and collected as he was before.
Eccentric Wind nodded in agreement as he also rose to his feet.
The two of them swayed in unison before abruptly disappearing on the spot.
In the next instant, the two of them had appeared outside the palace before vanishing again in a flash.
A short while later, the two of them stopped some distance away from the palace. High up in their air over 1,000 feet away from them, Han Li and Hu Qinglei were already facing off against one another.
Both of them were completely calm and expressionless.
There were many cultivators spectating from down below and hundreds of beautiful Devil Palace female servants had flocked out from the other palaces nearby. All of them were discussing spiritedly among themselves with excitement etched on their faces.
It was no wonder that they were so excited; seeing the master of the Devil Palace himself in action was quite a rare occasion, even for them.
Eccentric Wind looked on with narrowed eyes before suddenly turning to Xiang Zhili as he asked, "Do you think that Han brat will be able to withstand the attack if Fellow Daoist Hu uses his full power?"Previous Chapter Next Chapter