Chapter 1645: Futile Efforts

Han Li wore a calm expression on his face, and as opposed to answering the man's question, he asked, "I did indeed manage to kill the cave spirit, but do you know what it was that had possessed the cave spirit?"

Both Xian Xian and the silver-armored man's expressions changed slightly upon as they exchanged a quick glance upon hearing this.

After a brief silence, Xian Xian asked, "Would you care to enlighten us, Brother Han?"

"Before the cave spirit died, it proclaimed itself to be a soul fragment of a Heavenly Devilish Sovereign. Do you two know anything about this?" Han Li asked in a nonchalant manner.

"A Heavenly Devilish Sovereign? That's impossible!" Both Xian Xian and the silver-armored man exclaimed in unison with astonishment and horror etched on their faces.

"Oh? This is the first time I've heard of this Heavenly Devilish Sovereign, but both of you seem to be quite familiar with it. Would you be able to fill me in on this topic?" Han Li raised an eyebrow, as he cast his gaze directly toward the two of them.

The silver-armored man's expression darkened, and he merely harrumphed coldly, seemingly not intending to answer Han Li's question.

Following a brief hesitation, Xian Xian explained, "I trust that you already know what a Heavenly Devilish Monarch is, Brother Han; a Heavenly Devilish Sovereign is a top-grade being among Heavenly Devilish Monarchs. They possess countless different forms, and even true spirit beings are susceptible to them during their tribulation transcendences. If they were to fall prey to a Heavenly Devilish Sovereign, they'd undergo devilfication and be reduced to puppets."

"Even true spirits are susceptible to them?" Han Li was quite astonished to hear this.

"Not just true spirits; it's said that even the immortals of the True Immortal Realm could be forced to undergo devilfication by a Heavenly Devilish Sovereign. Of course, this is only a rumor; no one has been able to confirm it to be true or false. Speaking of which, is it really true that this cave spirit was possessed by a Heavenly Devilish Sovereign?" Xian Xian explained with a wry smile, and at the end, she couldn't help but ask for confirmation.

Han Li was naturally stunned upon hearing this information about these Heavenly Devilish Sovereigns, but his expression remained unchanged as he countered, "Do you think I'm lying to you, Fairy Xian?"

"Of course not! It's just that this is quite an important matter, and I simply wanted to confirm this just to make sure I hadn't misheard."

Before Xian Xian had a chance to say anything else, the silver-armored being interjected in an expressionless manner, "I think he's most likely telling the truth."

Not only was Han Li rather surprised to hear this, Xian Xian was also quite taken aback as she asked, "What do you mean by that, Fellow Daoist Gui?"

"Hmph, you won't fool me by playing dumb. Don't tell me that you didn't notice anything strange about the cave spirit. You should be well aware that spirits of heaven and earth like this true spirit can't be possessed by normal beings, not even true spirit Kirins themselves! On top of that, that thing was most likely telling the truth when claiming that it had killed many beings like us already," the silver-armored man harrumphed coldly.

"Even so, how did it find out about the true spirit cave and true Kirin essence?" Xian Xian rebuked with a shake of her head.

"That's rather difficult to speculate. Perhaps when this soul fragment of the Heavenly Devilish Sovereign came to our realm, it unintentionally devoured one of the other 100,000 true spirit Kirin soul fragments, thereby giving it knowledge of this place. Alternatively, perhaps it really was a coincidence, and it stumbled upon this cave spirit first, then learned about the secret of this true spirit cave after devouring other beings," the silver-armored man mused in a dark voice.

"Those scenarios do indeed seem plausible, but we can find out the truth, can't we? If I recall correctly, all living beings that have been possessed by Heavenly Devilish Sovereigns will disintegrate into devilish dust. The cave spirit is quite a special being, but it wouldn't have been able to escape that fate, either." Xian Xian cast her gaze downward as she spoke.

Han Li also looked down with a curious expression, and he was shocked to find that a massive pile of black dust had appeared on the ground where the monstrous face had been before.

Only after expending extensive effort did Han Li manage to glean a slight semblance of the monstrous face from the pile of black dust, and his lips twitch involuntarily in response.

The other two had naturally also witnessed this.

Xian Xian merely heaved a faint sigh before falling silent, while the silver-armored man raised a hand and made a grabbing motion downward.

A clump of black dust instantly flew toward him as a stream of black smoke, and carefully inspected it for a long while before finally concluding in a calm manner, "There's no mistaking it; this is indeed devilish dust."

"It appears that Brother Han was telling the truth then. No wonder this cave spirit was so difficult to deal with; the two of us unwittingly fell into the Heavenly Devilish Sovereign's trap, and we almost perished as a result. Come to think of it, I really must thank you for saving me, Brother Han." Xian Xian turned to Han Li with a grateful smile.

"There's no need to thank me; I was only able to slay this devil through sheer luck. Otherwise, this devilish sovereign's abilities would've been very difficult to combat." Han Li's lips twitched in involuntarily as he recalled back to the ordeal he'd suffered within the monstrous face's body, and there was still a hint of fear lingering in his heart.

"Of course. Thankfully, this cave spirit isn't an actual being with a substantial body, so the soul fragment of the devilish sovereign was only able to unleash a small portion of its power through it. Otherwise, Heavenly Devilish Sovereigns are virtually just as powerful as true immortals. Even beings that have only been possessed by one of its soul fragments would definitely be far too fearsome for us to oppose. However, you've most likely made yourself a powerful enemy here, Fellow Daoist Han. The Heavenly Devilish Sovereign to which this soul fragment belongs will be seeking its revenge, so if you ever make it to a point where you can ascend to the True Immortal Realm, it will most likely return to try and interfere with your tribulation," the silver-armored man said as a cold light flashed through his eyes.

"Hehe, I'm not going to think about something so far away," Han Li chuckled in a nonchalant manner.

"Alright, seeing as Fellow Daoist Xian and I have answered your questions, it's time we talked about the true Kirin essence, isn't it?" the silver-armored man chuckled coldly as he changed the subject.

"I don't know what this true Kirin essence looks like, but I definitely didn't see it within the cave spirit's body," Han Li replied in a concise manner.

The silver-armored man's expression immediately darkened upon hearing this, and Xian Xian's brows also furrowed in contemplation.

Strangely enough, neither of them were enraged by skeptical of his claim.

Han Li's eyes narrowed in befuddlement upon seeing this.

"What do you think, Fellow Daoist Gui?" Xian Xian suddenly asked with a smile.

"I am indeed unable to detect any true Kirin essence fluctuations from Fellow Daoist Han's body. The essence comes from the true spirit Kirin itself, so there's no way to fool us using any treasures or restrictions, which means he's telling the truth. However, back when we were battling the cave spirit, we both sensed the essence within its body," the silver-armored man replied.

"That means you've arrived at the same conclusion as I have, Fellow Daoist Gui." Xian Xian's expression immediately paled upon hearing this.

"Indeed. Seeing as Fellow Daoist Han hasn't obtained the true Kirin essence, it must've dissipated and returned to the earth following the cave spirit's death or returned to the original true spirit cave, and the only way to obtain it would be to wait for the next cave spirit to be born," the silver-armored man confirmed with a dark expression.

"If it's the first scenario, then we won't have any more chances, but if the second scenario was what actually happened, then we'll just have to wait for a few hundred years," Xian Xian said with a hint of forced optimism in her voice.

"Oh? In that case, is there a way to find out which of the two scenarios actually took place?" Han Li asked as he crossed his arms and stroked his chin.

"Of course not. There's no way to track the true Kirin essence regardless of what happened," Xian Xian replied in a dejected manner.

Han Li was also quite disappointed to hear this. After all, that essential power could assist him in reaching the Body Integration Stage, but now, even if the true Kirin Essence still existed, he'd have to wait several hundred years for a chance to obtain it.

However, even though neither Xian Xian nor the silver-armored man seemed to be lying, he naturally wasn't just going to take their word for it.

Thus, blue light flashed through his eyes, and he also released his spiritual sense as he rose up into the air to search through the nearby area.

However, after scouring carefully through the area in a radius of several kilometers, his search still proved to be completely fruitless, so he could only descend before Xian Xian and the silver-armored man again in a gloomy manner.

At the sight of Han Li's dejected display, Xian Xian and silver-armored man were even more convinced that he had been telling the truth. Thus, all three of them fell silent as they became absorbed in their own thoughts.

For Xian Xian, her trip had ended in complete failure, and she'd wasted several precious treasures in the process, so she was understandably quite depressed.

The silver-armored man remained relatively calm, but he was also pondering something.

After a while, the silver-armored man seemed to have seen the silver lining on the situation, and he suddenly chuckled, "Hehe, looks like this trip was made in vain. Thankfully, I possessed a silver wyrm, so waiting several hundred years is nothing to me."

"You're a silver wyrm, so even after waiting for so long, you still have a chance to reach the holy race and even beyond. If I were to wait for several centuries, even if I could obtain the true Kirin essence, I may not have enough time to completely refine it and use it in my cultivation," Xian Xian sighed with a complex expression on her face.

"In that case, why don't you give up or become one with me?" the silver-armored man suddenly suggested upon hearing this.

"I can certainly fuse my spiritual sense with yours. As long as you'll allow me to take over as the dominant consciousness, I'll take you up on your offer right away," Xian Xian countered with a dark expression.

"Hmph! I tried to throw you a lifeline, but you seem intent on bringing punishment upon yourself!" A vicious light suddenly flashed through the silver-armored man's eyes, and he clenched his fist together as a faint odor of blood and gore began to emanate from his body.

Xian Xian's heart stirred slightly upon seeing this, but she didn't back down in the slightest as she said, "Do you think you can take on myself and Brother Han at once, Fellow Daoist Gui?"

A cold light flashed through the silver-armored man's eyes, and he turned to Han Li as he asked, "Fellow Daoist Han, are you going to intervene? If you leave right now, I'll be sure to give you a handsome reward!"

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