The wild grass and trees on the plain were infected by fiery sparks, turning the whole place into an inferno.
Su Yun and Yan Ziyu gathered all of their energy and essentially wrapped themselves around Feiyun, leveraging the ground in order to stop him.
Feiyun could pull a mountain right now so the two of them have been dragged for more than thirty miles. Two deep trails stained with blood were left behind. Nevertheless, Feiyun seemed to have used all of his energy. The bottoms of his shoes were gone too; his hands dripped with blood.
Nevertheless, he continued to move forward towards the formation.
In the distant, one could faintly hear the sounds of a zither and a woman crying - a heart-wrenching melody.
“His demonic blood is awakening again. If we don’t subdue him now, he’ll become a monster.” The scholar took out a white piece of eaglewood, resembling a spiritual ruler. He aimed it straight for Feiyun’s spine.
“Ra!” Despite his near-demonic state, Feiyun’s awareness remained. He turned back and roared, releasing a plume of flame from his eyes that blew the scholar flying. His white robe had a thousand burnt holes.
“Let me!” A white moon suddenly arrived with an ethereal woman right behind it - like a god coming out of a painting.
Dongfang Jingyue was here. A jade vessel flew out of her forehead and landed in her palm. Everything nearby became slow as if time itself was being affected, except for her. She walked towards Feiyun with a gentle gaze and touched the Yama’s spine with one finger.
Though Feiyun was ten times slower, he still retaliated with a palm strike on her shoulder.
She didn’t try to dodge at all and managed to subdue him. Nevertheless, she dropped on her knees as if struck by a lightning bolt.
Her right shoulder was broken but she continued to hug him with her left hand, not allowing him to hit the ground. She slowly propped him downward and they maintained this position.
The entire area around the shrine was now lava. Everything was refined.
“Haha! She’s dead for sure, not even a single strand of soul is left behind!” Shenya laughed and raised his hand.
Two divine garments flew out. One of them was on fire with red feathers - the Firebird Gown. It would never go away unless its master was dead. It looked like Hongyan had been refined in the formation.
The second garment was golden with nine embroidered dragons. They looked animated as if sealed within - the Regal Dragon Robe worn by the emperors of Jin.
He was shaken after holding these two garments and instantly put on the dragon robe. An imperial aura surged and blessed him. The four Giants next to him all kneeled and loudly said: “Greetings, Your Majesty.”
“Haha!” Shenya laughed with both hands behind his back, looking quite stalwart. Suddenly, he furrowed his brows and looked for something within the formation but failed.
“Your Majesty, what are you looking for?” An old man asked.
“The imperial letter.” Shenya became more anxious.
“Was it refined by the formation?”
“Nonsense, Father personally wrote the letter. It has an indelible mark of the Imperial Seal, this formation still can’t refine it.” Shenya had a cold expression: “That bitch must have already sent someone with the letter to Feiyun. This is not good, we need to return to the capital right now.”
Shenya started flying away. The four Giants and the experts performing the formation also followed right behind him. This impressive group didn’t waste time going towards the capital.
Meanwhile, the inferno was still raging, destroying everything within a thousand miles radius. The center had an unbelievable heatwave, looking like an ocean of lava.
“Whoosh!” Alas, the hot gales couldn’t warm Feiyun’s heart.
Once he regained his sanity, Shenya’s group was already gone for six hours.
The flame had extinguished but the ocean of lava has yet to solidify. A wave of flame still burned on top of it.
He stood next to the lava and kicked a boulder into the lava. It instantly broke apart and melted.
The lava still had the destructive affinity of the formation. This power was numerous times stronger than the lava found in the core, more than enough to destroy a pseudo Enlightened Being’s physical body and soul.
Dongfang Jingyue stood next to Feiyun the entire time.
“Feng Feiyun, if you blame me for this, just kill me. I won’t fight back.” Su Yun said; his lower body was mangled and battered after being dragged by Feiyun for dozens of miles. One could almost see his bones.
Feiyun’s eyes were empty; only a forlorn gaze towards the lava existed.
“Feng Feiyun, I am also responsible for Nangong Hongyan’s death. If you want to kill me, I won’t utter a single word of grievance.” Ziyu was just as miserable as Su Yun. His leg bones were visible while his left hand was nearly crippled from hanging on to Feiyun.
“She’s dead?” Feiyun murmured.
The scholar, Su Yun, and Ziyu were silent. They saw Hongyan being refined by the formation and burnt alive. One could only imagine the gruesome pain, identical to being boiled alive or fried in a cauldron.
Worst of all, because of her Firebird Gown with its powerful resistance, she must have suffered an agonizing and slow death - no way to escape and too difficult to actually die.
Dongfang Jingyue said: “You have tried your best, just blame us.”
He hoarsely whimpered: “She’s really dead… but there should be a soul left?”
Unfortunately, not to mention remnant souls, even a mark of life would be completely erased by the incinerating formation.
Jingyue didn’t answer.
“Where is her soul?!” Feiyun grabbed her shoulders and shook her back and forth. His fingers dug into her skin.
Her right shoulder was broken earlier so the pain made her grit her teeth.
“There should be a strand of soul left! There should be a strand of soul left…” Feiyun murmured.
As long as there was a soul left, she could still cultivate the dao of the ghost with his full support. He didn’t mind that she would turn into a bloodthirsty fiend of sorts but this formation was ruthless. She didn’t have a chance to switch to a different path.
Her mark of life was completely gone along with her soul.
“Splash!” He jumped into the ocean of lava.
Dongfang Jingyue and Su Yun were scared out of their mind and wanted to jump too. However, the scholar stopped them: “It’s fine, let him go."
After two more hours, Feiyun climbed out of the fiery shore, looking lost. He had burns all over but didn’t care about them.
He found two items, a phoenix bone and the Cloak of Invisibility.
This cloak was made from the strings of invisible silkworms. Only Feiyun with his phoenix gaze could actually see them. That’s why Shenya could find the other two garments but not the cloak.
As for the phoenix bone, it sank to the depth of the ocean and Shenya’s divine intents weren’t enough to spot it. Of course, he didn’t expect for Hongyan to have something like this either.
Feiyun had planted it into her body. Now, it had none of her presence, only a regular piece of phoenix bone. It became the proof of her death.
Eternal parting was one of the greatest sufferings in life.
He recalled the first time seeing her, so incredible and shocked as if he was seeing a goddess.
The first time hearing her voice was akin to hearing the sounds of heaven. Her performance back at the Martial Tower still echoed in his mind right now: ‘For whom the beauty smiles as youth is passing by? In this mundane realm, the heart will not age, but without you, the world is a waste. Don't climb all alone till gray hair flutters on the steep pavilion. With no time remaining, who will draw her eyebrows in the end?’
This song would never appear again in this world. Even her zither was refined to ashes as if it had never existed.
The sad tunes of pan pipes came from the horizon; no one knows who was playing it. The sorrowful melody made tears flow down. 
“Hongyan is dead, this is an undeniable truth. What you need to do right now is to calm down and plot her revenge instead of wallowing in grief.”
She was the only one who dared to speak at this moment.
“No, you’re wrong! She’s not dead and is waiting at Steelmountain for me right now! Haha, she likes to trick people, we’re all being fooled right now. I’ll go there to find her, she’s definitely there.” He suddenly had a bright smile: “Why are you all looking like that? I’m fine, I’ll go right now, you guys can go do whatever!”
Having said that, he excitedly rushed for Steelmountain. The brighter his smile, the more worried they became.
“Leave him to me.” Dongfang Jingyue followed right behind him, not giving up an inch.
He noticed and tried to lose her but she didn’t let up until they reached Steelmountain.
His smile quickly went away, leaving behind an expression much uglier than a crying grimace.
Nangong Hongyan was obviously not there. He sat down on a boulder by the entrance and waited while holding the phoenix bone that had turned cold.
He looked at the people coming and going; his eyes occasionally turned bright from anticipation before becoming disappointed. In the end, he seemingly turned into a statue, not blinking even once and becoming part with the boulder.
This lasted for seven days and eight nights already.
Night fell again, accompanied by spring rain. He became soaked; the water was cold enough to reach the bones.
Jingyue stood next to the boulder, unmoving just like him.
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