Chapter 98 - Choice

As the ten continued to absorb, the Spiritual Lake’s spiritual essence density began to drop and lake water became more transparent.

While Wan Feiye was cultivating, he could feel that something was off. The amount of spiritual essence he was absorbing was unbelievably low. When he opened his eyes, he was dumbfounded.

Lin Yun had a total of eleven vortexes around him, absorbing the spiritual essence from his direction.

“Lin Yun, what are you trying to do?!” Wan Feiye cursed. He would have to wait another decade to absorb the spiritual essence again. There was no way he would tolerate Lin Yun snatching his share.

Lin Yun completely ignored him. He was focused on making a breakthrough.

“Uncle, are you not going to interfere?” Wan Feiye could only turn his hope to Wan Qiuye in the end.

“I think you should focus. Look, he just seized more spiritual essence from you,” Wan Qiuye replied.

“Ah!” Wan Feiye lowered his head in a panic.

Damn it! Wan Feiye cursed inwardly. In the end, he could only close his eyes and try his best to absorb.

When Wan Feng peeked over he nearly burst out laughing. Wan Feiye was his strongest competition for patriarch. He was quite happy when he saw what was happening. As far as Lin Yun was concerned, Wan Feng didn’t interfere because he knew Lin Yun had no intention of joining Wan Clan.

As time passed, Lin Yun’s cultivation grew thanks to the eleven vortexes around him. Until suddenly, his cultivation stopped growing no matter how much spiritual essence he absorbed. Lin Yun was disappointed. He had reached the limit. The spiritual essence here wasn’t enough for him to make a breakthrough.

“What a shame. I only need a little more to make a breakthrough,” Lin Yun said disappointedly as he opened his eyes. When he looked around, everyone else was still absorbing spiritual essence. As he watched, Lin Yun smiled bitterly.

“My young friend, you seem to be limited by your aptitude,” Wan Qiuye smiled, looking at Lin Yun. He had already noticed Lin Yun couldn’t make a breakthrough, no matter how he absorbed spiritual essences.

“Senior Wan, what’s down below?” Lin Yun asked, avoiding Wan Qiuye’s question from earlier.

“There’s a Flame Vein, so there’s earthen flame down below. The heat is so strong, not even I can get close. Why? You want to take a look below?” Wan Qiuye replied.

“Since there’s time, why not? Perhaps the density of spiritual essence is higher down there.”

“You can give it a try, but don’t go too deep. Otherwise, not even I will be able to save you,” Wan Qiuye smiled. Lin Yun was young, and he could understand his thoughts. He knew that Lin Yun wouldn’t give up without seeing it with his own eyes. He knew that someone like Lin Yun naturally had an adventurous heart.

“Thank you, senior. I’ll take a look below then,” Lin Yun said before dipping beneath the surface, sword box in hand. There was still a lot of spiritual essence down below, but the density much better. It wasn’t useful to him.

He had already reached the bottleneck, and his cultivation wouldn’t increase any further no matter how much he absorbed. Unless the spiritual essence were ten-fold denser, it wouldn’t help with his breakthrough. In the end, he would have to grind his way through the bottleneck over time.

Strange plants were growing down here, but they weren’t too useful to him. It appeared Wan Qiuye had harvested anything of value.

“What heat!” Lin Yun was shocked by the heat that Wan Qiuye mentioned. Fortunately, he had the Fiery Demon Physique, so he could resist it.

He had swam down more than a hundred meters and still had not reached the bottom. Unfortunately, he could no longer endure the temperature. He would be cooked alive if he went any deeper.

In the distance, he caught a glimpse of the earthen flame that Wan Qiuye had mentioned. He could see faint flickers of fire at the bottom of the lake.

“Is this the earthen flame that Wan Qiuye was talking about?” Lin Yun couldn’t endure the blazing heat any longer and wanted to withdraw.

Suddenly, a chill emanated from the ancient sword box strong enough to counter the heat Lin Yun was facing.

“The sword box? The Violet Sacred Frostfire”

Lin Yun never expected that the ancient sword box would surprise him down here. The Violet Sacred Frostfire was the Violet Ice Sparrow’s origin fire, the source of its icy characteristics. The Violet Ice Sparrow suddenly came to life, flapping its wings on the surface of the sword box.

“Should I take a look?” Lin Yun knew that Wan Qiuye must’ve swept everything valuable in the lake. So if Lin Yun wanted to find anything worthwhile, he would have to visit places that Wan Qiuye could not.

However, the earthen flame on the Flame Vein was something that not even Wan Qiuye, a Sixth Orifice of the Xiantian Realm, could resist. Would he be able to even with the sword box?

“Screw it!” Lin Yun gnashed his teeth and decided to take the risk.

Although the earthen flame appeared close, it took swimming down another four hundred meters to reach it. As he watched the earthen flame blaze underwater, Lin Yun felt like he was in a dream.

Swish!

Lin Yun landed on the Flame Vein, and a violet glow enveloped him. Despite being at the source of the heat, he felt cool.

Lin Yun’s eyes glowed as he swept his gaze around. If the Flame Vein could give birth to something like the Spiritual Vein, there must be other treasures born from it as well. 

Lin Yun spent half an hour searching, but he was disappointed to find nothing besides the earthen flame.

“Bubbles? Can there possibly be a space down below?”

Lin Yun swam down towards the ravine. The ravine grew larger as he approached. The hole wasn’t huge, but it was more than enough for him to fit through.

“Let’s go!” Lin Yun decided to go in since he couldn’t find anything else after spending half a day.

He had no idea how long he swam in the ravine. When he emerged from the other side, he appeared in a karst cave covered with stalactites.

“There’s a karst cave under the Flame Vein? How odd…” Lin Yun looked around curiously. By now, he had recovered from his injuries thanks to the spiritual essence. He was now in his optimal state, reaching the pinnacle of the first orifice.

Drip! Drip!

He could hear water droplets falling in the karst cave and directed his gaze over. He was momentarily speechless before bursting with joy. He saw a massive stalactite that was raining droplets of water from the ceiling.

“This is…” Lin Yun’s eyes lit up. The droplets were made of concentrated spiritual essence!

The spiritual essence wasn't produced in the Spiritual Lake, but rather was diluted by it.

He could see a naturally formed platform beneath the stalactite that served as a basin into which the spiritual essence pooled. He now understood how the Spiritual Lake came to be!

After the spiritual essence evaporated from the heat, it was diluted in the lake up above. He had found the source of the spiritual essence!

Lin Yun’s heart started pounding. The diluted spiritual essence in the lake was powerful enough that several clans fought over it. How powerful then must this concentrated spiritual essences be?

Swish! Swish! Swish!

Lin Yun whipped out several jade bottles without a second thought. In short order, he filled ten bottles full of concentrated spiritual essence. But it was not long before Lin Yun started to fret. The jade bottles were meant for pellets, and he didn’t carry any other containers on him.

He had only bottled 1% of the spiritual essence left in the lake!

Lin Yun was vexed. He was sitting on a mountain of gold, but he couldn’t do anything about it. 

Lin Yun was so absorbed with his spiritual essence problem, he did not notice a pair of crimson eyes staring at him. An enormous snake observed him in complete silence from the shadows, flicking its tongue excitedly at his scent.

Hard at work solving his transportation issues, Lin Yun just happened to look up at the stalactite for long enough to notice something was off about the flow of water on its surface. He realized that the droplets weren’t simply running down the stalactite, they were coming from it! The stalactite was melting. It was an enormous solidified chunk of spiritual essence!

Lin Yun’s heart began to beat wildly. He was overwhelmed by these rapid fire surprises. Solidified spiritual essence was much, much more valuable than concentrated liquid spiritual essence.

“I have to try breaking it!” Lin Yun said excitedly as he leapt into the air. He gave the stalactite a solid chop at its base with his hand.

Suddenly, he could feel a cold breeze from his back that made him feel odd. The Flame Vein was right above the karst cave, so where was this cool breeze coming from? Unfortunately, he got his answer as soon as he turned around.

There was a crimson snake less than a meter from him, its jaws wide apart. If he continued trying to break the solidified spiritual essence, he would be devoured by the snake. But if he didn’t, he would be leaving behind an immeasurable treasure.

However, he did not have time to think. Whichever one he went with, he had to pick it now!

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