Chapter 891: Crisis

“Of course. I have no interest in your other affairs. Although we’ve come to an agreement, let us head somewhere more discrete. This place is too open.” Han Li smiled and waved his sleeve at Feng Yue without waiting for him to agree.

A gust of azure light blew around Feng Yue and caught him just as he was about to fall. Then with the azure light wrapping around his waist, he began to float off the ground. Although Han Li’s cultivation was sealed, he still possessed his superb control of magic power, something far beyond the capability of an ordinary Foundation Establishment cultivator. 

At that moment, his second Nascent Soul emerged from the forest and reappeared in front of Han Li with a tri-pointed stake in one hand and the purple-robed old man’s primal soul in the other.

Han Li glanced at the old man’s primal soul and emotionlessly said, “There is no use for him. Kill him.”

When the second Nascent Soul heard Han Li, it grinned and firmly held onto the primal soul before emitting a black-green flame from its small hand. The green ball trembled for a short moment before turning into ash.

At that moment, Han Li flicked his finger and an egg-sized fireball struck the old man’s crushed remains, giving them a blazing cremation.

Soon after, Han Li waved at the ground and the old man’s storage pouch and small fire-red sword flew into his hand. Then after tidying up the rest of the traces of what had happened nearby, Han Li brought Feng Yue to the sky before dropping down to the field of rocks where he had set up his temporary shelter.

Now that his cultivation was restricted, he had no choice but to be careful.

Additionally, Han Li felt particularly gloomy about how he wasn’t able to employ his immensely powerful spiritual sense. It was on the level of a late-Nascent Soul cultivator but he took the initiative to conceal most of it.  If a Grand Elder of the Soaring Tribes or any of their Nascent Soul cultivators with strengthened spiritual sense were to detect him, it would be a sure death sentence. As a result, he had pulled back his spiritual sense to only cover the nearby area, preventing any roaming high-grade Soaring Tribes cultivators from noticing it.

When Han Li was caught nurturing his Gold Devouring Beetles, he had been resting a portion of his spiritual sense at the time and had grown careless. Then as it so happened, a mid-Nascent Soul Soaring Tribes cultivator was pursuing a demon bird at a speed comparable to a late-Nascent Soul cultivator about ten kilometers away. Even if Han Li had been on guard at the time, he wouldn’t have been able to put away his Gold Devouring Beetles in time and would’ve encountered disaster regardless.

He was truly out of luck for a mid-Nascent Soul cultivator skilled in movement techniques to come across him in a place as vast as the Endless Sky Plains. And he was convinced that if both sides understood each other's abilities, a battle wouldn’t have broken out between them.

Everytime Han Li recalled this, he found himself not knowing whether to laugh or cry.

He now found a majority of his magic power sealed due to the baleful Qi backlash. And his opponent only managed to have one of his seven split Nascent Souls escape from him. It was likely he suffered a massive loss in cultivation and would take quite some time to recover.

...

The next day, Han Li returned to the encampment. There were far fewer tents there than when he had arrived. It seemed many of the tribes finished resting and had continued on their way. When Han Li found the Grey Heron Tribe, they were already prepared to leave and were waiting for Han Li to return.

Ying Lu was delighted when he spotted Han Li and hastily invited him into a carriage. He then called for the escort to leave through the other side of the encampment.

Han Li sat in his carriage and slowly closed his eyes in preparation to sleep. But against his expectations, the carriage came to a sudden stop right after they left the encampment.

Han Li opened his eyes with a frown, simply releasing a bit of his spiritual sense outside instead of lifting the curtains.

Soon, escorts from various other tribes began to appear and their leaders called out to Ying Lu in greetings before joining together with the Grey Heron Tribe at the front of their caravan. At that moment, Han Li realized that during the time he was absent, the Grey Heron Tribe had formed an alliance of sorts.

These carriages had their own cultivator guards, but their cultivation was pathetically low. Two of the tribes even only had cultivators at Qi Condensation stage. According to the sayings of the Soaring Tribes, Qi Condensation cultivators weren't considered true Immortals. It was also unknown how these tribes came across these cultivators. Despite Han Li's sealed cultivation, he still possessed the highest cultivation among the caravan guards.

Han Li stroked his chin and then shook his head with a bitter smile. From the way he saw it, having more tribes in this journey would only serve to inconvenience them instead of being of any help.

Then, the Red Wolf Tribe rushed over. When Han Li saw this, his expression stirred and he thought to release his spiritual sense, but suddenly, a very faint spiritual sense swept across the caravan. If it weren’t for Han Li’s hugely powerful spiritual sense, it was likely he wouldn’t have sensed this at all.

Han Li’s expression changed and without further thought, he concealed his aura.

As expected, the thread of spiritual sense swept past the entire caravan and then focused on inspecting the cultivators that were present. A moment later, Han Li stood up and began to walk in circles, ultimately deciding to remain inside his carriage.

Han Li wore a sullen expression as he looked at the encampment as they departed.

During that moment, three Soaring Tribes cultivators were standing on the second floor of the stone structure in the encampment, all of them looking in the direction of Han Li’s caravan. The bald old man suddenly yelped in surprise and opened his eyes with a bewildered expression.

The large middle-aged man standing behind the old man had a change of expression and his face tensed, asking, “Senior Ying, could it be you’ve discovered him?”

The bald old man snorted and gave the middle-aged man an annoyed look. “Be at ease. It wasn’t the foreign cultivator. There was a person amongst them that was acutely poisoned and surrounded by toxic Qi. I am baffled how he is still alive.”

The palace-robed woman standing at the middle-aged man’s side smiled and explained, “Senior Martial Uncle, Brother Li was simply a bit worried. Senior Martial Uncle might have nothing to fear from the foreign cultivator, but you are the only Nascent Soul cultivator present. Given how vicious this person is, the many small tribes and minor cultivators in the caravans will be drawn into the battle, and while you may be able to fend for yourself, you won’t be able to look after the others. I hope you’ll be able to excuse our worries.”

The old man calmly said, “You don’t have to flatter me. If he wasn’t injured, even three of me wouldn’t be his match. But now that he’s received an injury from the Grand Elder’s Elemental Immortalwrest Palm, there is no longer anything to fear. As of now, I simply need to keep watch over this area and prevent the foreign cultivator from sneaking away. Our tribe must acquire his method of nurturing so many Gold Devouring Beetles. This effort has gone so far as to stationing a Nascent Soul cultivator among all the nearby encampments in hopes of finding him. After we set down an inescapable net and the Day of Spirit Release is concluded, the Saintess and two Grand Elders will meet at the nearby temple and use the sacred relic to summon an apparition of the holy beast. Then with the aid of its power, we will quickly find where this foreign cultivator is hidden. It will be impossible for him to escape.” 

The palace-robed woman sighed with relief and said, “So it was like that. I was wondering why we weren’t urged to act after we received our orders.”

The old man snorted and said, “Who do you think your cheap tricks are fooling? However, no one could blame you. Although he is heavily injured, you still aren’t a match for him. Not to mention the cultivators dispatched from other areas had mostly behaved the same way. We didn’t truly believe that you’d be able to scare him out of hiding. After all, the foreign cultivator’s movement techniques are unordinary. Not only is he skilled in earth movement techniques, but he also used that strange blood-red evasion technique. If he were discovered, we wouldn’t be able to hold him down without a Grand Elder present. Also, despite what I’ve told you, you still have to follow your orders on the surface and occasionally sweep across the nearby area.”

“Yes!” The large middle-aged man and the palace-robed woman exchanged a glance and happily agreed. After all, they had been a bit anxious about the way they had been dealing with the situation. Now that they had confirmation, they felt much more at ease.

“Ah yes, Senior Ying, since you found the poisoned person in the caravan to be odd, do you wish for him to stay behind so that you might interrogate him?” The large man said in an attempt to curry favor.

“That...” The old man’s heart stirred and he stroked his beard as he pondered. He then waved his hand and said, “Leave it be. It isn’t a mystery that he is able to survive if he had some poison warding treasures or had taken some medicine pills. However, this displays he has some Senior backing him. I reckon that he will only have a few days before he perishes. It could be troublesome if he were to die near us.”

“Yes, it is as you say.” The large man said with an embarrassed expression. His attempts at gaining favor had fallen short.

At that moment, the old man took another glance in the direction of the caravan and unconsciously frowned.

When he first swept his spiritual sense through the caravan, he had felt a cultivator’s body that was under the effects of an unordinary constraint but that sensation was very brief. The second time he examined the caravan, he wasn’t able to find any trace of this. This strange occurrence bewildered him and caused him to hesitate.

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Johnchen and DoubleDD's Thoughts

The Ying 鹰 of the Nascent Soul cultivator and the Ying of the Grey Heron Tribe Leader are homophones but are different words.

ED: Lan

PR: Mangu King