As he experimented with creating godnotes, Yang Qi’s cultivation base improved. Eventually, he could create notes that would last for a full hour before disappearing. However, he still couldn’t affix them with the seal of a Paramount God.
Doing so would cause the note to immediately collapse. It seemed he would have to wait until after godly ascension to actually produce godnotes.
That said, the enlightenment he was receiving because of the process was making him much stronger.
Plus, the godstones he could produce were increasing in quality.
Obviously, there were different grades of godstones, and the top experts could very easily assess their quality. The main measure to assess them was the strength of the godpower.
Yang Qi’s palm contained a collection of soybean-sized godstones, all of them pulsing with terrifyingly intense godpower; they were quite different from the godstones he had created before.
Producing a box, he put the godstones inside, musing that he would definitely have enough to purchase whatever interesting items might come up at auction. The godstones weren't forgeries; they were real, and wouldn’t fade away for as long as heaven and earth existed.
The truth was that Yang Qi could actually make them even more powerful by shrinking them down even smaller, to the size of sesame seeds. But that would likely arouse suspicion, so he decided to work with what he had first to see how it went.
If he turned his godstones into ‘godsand’, even a tiny bag would be worth as much as a city. For now, he was content to have something bean-sized.
When everyone emerged from their night of rest, they found that, oddly, it had stopped snowing. Yang Qi walked out of the inn to find the light shining on his face and the temperature rising. He had previously assumed that the snowfall would last for years, only to be proven wrong.
The light was so bright and hot that it hurt his skin, making him feel like he was being slowly baked. Obviously, if he stayed out in this sunlight for too long, he would be dangerously burned. ‘What the fuck. How did the weather change this quickly? The snow outside is already melting away.’
Jadefall and the others emerged as well. Sure enough, off in the distance, it was possible to see the snow melting into water, which formed rivulets and streams that flowed into the bay. Not even immortals could stand such drastic changes in temperature, and if it weren’t for how strong this group was, they likely would have fallen ill from it.
There was no sun in the sky, but it was still blindingly bright. It begged the question of where exactly the light came from. It was almost as if there were some immense power overhead causing the light to shine down. Yang Qi looked up and opened his Lord's Eye, but he could only see the light streaming down. It was almost as if there was some enormous furnace burning on the other side of the sky.
The miraculous nature of the god world was simply impossible to gain easy enlightenment of.
In the end, heat was heat. By now, the streets were literally smoking, as if this were a city of fire. Thankfully, there were spell formations to deal with this, and clouds soon covered the city, blocking the burning light.
Looking outside, Yang Qi saw that the area beyond was not as lucky as the interior. Water was evaporating into steam everywhere, with the heat being so intense that it could even kill people. Yang Qi couldn’t help but muse that the god world seemed to be a place of constant catastrophe. And he wondered how many demonlings must die because of the weather. Yang Qi could see the bodies of various god world creatures in the water that resulted from the melting snow, yet it was already possible to see various birds and demonlings that didn’t fear the heat, pouncing on the corpses and devouring them.
There were fire-type birds in the god world that were particularly active when the weather got hot like this. And of course, they would go into hiding when it snowed.
‘Life is hard in the god world,’ Yang Qi mused. ‘How do the common people even survive? It’s not as if they can stay in hiding all the time. And how could they possibly know how the weather will change from day to day? The people here have to constantly try to improve their cultivation bases. It's like they’re fighting a war against heaven and earth. No wonder everyone is so hell-bent on getting stronger.’ Everyone was thinking similar thoughts.
The previous night, it had been snowing so hard that people could freeze to death almost instantly. The next day, it was so hot that one could be baked to death.
“Who knows how long this weather will last,” Lightning Dragonriser said. Even he was sighing. “Over the past few years, the weather has been particularly unpredictable, almost as if some catastrophe is approaching. Ever since the disasters of ancient times, the weather has been fairly good. But things are changing. And whenever tribulation is on the way, the first signs are always in the weather.”
“You think these are signs?” Brahma said. “The true signs of impending tribulation would be for fire to rain down, mixed with swords, with the power to destroy the world. In the depths of the god world, there are floods and fiery winds that not even the god kingdoms can defend against. That is the stuff I would consider terrifying. This weather is pretty tame by comparison.”
‘He’s serious, isn’t he?’ Yang Qi thought. ‘The god world really is a dangerous place. The only option is to cultivate, cultivate, and keep on cultivating. I have to get stronger.’ Clearing his thoughts, he said, “Let’s go check out the Primeval Pavilion’s auction.”
As they walked along, Jadefall slid up next to Yang Qi, touched his arm and whispered, “Did you manage to make some godnotes? If so, then we're definitely rich.”
“I didn’t,” he replied just as quietly. “It's not going to be easy to produce counterfeit godnotes. My cultivation base just isn't high enough. That said, I did learn a lot about them through the night, and it will help me reach godly ascension even sooner. And I produced some godstones the size of beans. They’re valuable enough that we should be able to purchase some useful items.”
He pulled out a sack to show her. Right now, none of them had spatial bags, dimensional storage items, or anything else like that. Such items required the power of gods. It wasn’t that they didn’t exist. For instance, Proud Radiance had a storage ring given to him by one of the patriarch gods of his branch of the Proud Clan. But such things were difficult to use without the help of a god, as they required immense amounts of godpower to open.
As such, Quasi-Gods generally didn’t use them.
Of course, Yang Qi had the Cruiser of Civilization and its spatial powers, but unfortunately, his cultivation base wasn’t quite strong enough to use them here.
Instead, he had to operate like a human in the lands of mortals, by using an actual bag to carry things.
“Is that what you’re planning to use at the auction?” Lightning Dragonriser asked, his eyes betraying some disappointment at the sight of the sack. “You can buy things at auction with godstones, but it's usually best to use godnotes. If you do use godstones, you have to use ones of extremely high quality.”
“What do you think of the quality of these godstones?” Yang Qi asked, opening the sack for him to look inside.
As soon as Lightning Dragonriser saw the contents, his eyes went wide. Reaching inside, he pulled out one of the glittering, bean-sized godstones, which weighed heavily on his hand because of the godpower swirling inside. “Th-this... this.... Where did you get godstones of this quality? Only the top sects in existence would have access to ore deposits that produce godstones like this. And they would only distribute them internally. Did you discover a mine or something? You’re completely rich!”
“Don’t think too much into it,” Yang Qi replied. “Suffice it to say that I can get high-quality godstones. So tell me. How many godnotes do you think this bag is worth? And what would happen if I could get my hands on even finer quality stones?”
“That bag is probably worth a few dozen godnotes,” Lightning Dragonriser said. “And if you had better quality stones, you could obviously buy even more things. The higher the quality of the godstones, the better the spell formations and magical treasures you can power. Lower quality stones either won't work, or will even destroy the magical items in question. That’s one reason why high-quality godstones are so popular. After all, it would be a big waste to use godnotes to power ordinary spell formations.”
“In that case, everything will work out fine,” Yang Qi said. “We’ll just use godstones to purchase whatever we want from the auction. I don’t have a lot of godnotes, but I have plenty of godstones.”
Everyone excitedly hurried in the direction of the Primeval Pavilion.
The Primeval Pavilion was actually a sprawling palace that stretched for several kilometers from end to end, filled with towering pagodas and surrounded by a sturdy wall. It was already packed with people. Obviously, there were a lot of travelers here hoping to get items that would help them in the Bloodgore Trials.
Yang Qi and his people didn’t make a splash at all, and no one paid them any attention.
Looking around, Yang Qi didn’t spot any gods in attendance. Everyone was a Quasi-God, with Despot attendants. Generally speaking, the gods of the god world didn’t have dealings with the commoners.
Although there were a lot of people present, everything was in order. Disciples of the Primeval Pavilion directed everyone in an organized fashion. When Yang Qi spotted one of the disciples in charge, he slipped him a godstone. Smiling at the generosity, the disciple led Yang Qi and his group to the back to a private room.
They were obviously very happy to have some privacy, and to be away from the crowded, sweaty general floor.
“Are you here for the Bloodgore Trials?” the disciple asked. “Our Primeval Pavilion has a few very powerful magical treasures to be auctioned, as well as some amazing medicinal pills. You don’t want to miss out.”
“What exactly are these items?” Yang Qi asked. “Do you mind explaining?” He offered another bean-sized godstone, but the disciple waved his hands to reject it. “I actually don’t know. The objects to be auctioned are always kept top secret. Everyone will find out at the same time, when the objects are revealed. And even those few disciples who do know would never reveal that information, otherwise we would be executed.”
“So those are the rules? Fine. Still, take the godstone as a reward for your information. Yes, we’re here for the Bloodgore Trials. And we're one hundred percent certain that we’ll end up as members of the House of God Ordainment. The main reason we're here is to see what our competition will be using against us. As the saying goes, know yourself, know your enemy. And if something truly powerful comes along, we’ll want to keep it out of our enemies’ hands!” 
1. The saying know yourself, know your enemy comes from The Art of War.