I was feeling good today, so I didn’t want to get involved in PvP, especially against players of this level. There was no glory to be won even if I managed to annihilate all of them!
I revealed my user ID and my new title, Earthfire Realm. The Soul Suppressing Cloak flapping loudly behind me, I pointed my sword straight at the magic knight’s face and smiled. "Can I pass through here now?"
The magic knight instantly dropped his arrogance and made mumbling but agreeing noises. The group of Mad Dragon players behind him deflated like balloons, their ego and morale gone in an instant. They knew they were no match for me even with a hundred people against one. The power gap between an Earthfire Realm player and a fifth-promotion player was huge, not to mention that their opponent would be me, with all the mechanical skill to make full use of that advantage.
An archer carrying a war bow said, "Give it up, Two! The guild leader told us to grind more and PK less, right? This would just be a waste of time anyway."
The magic knight wordlessly nodded before cupping his fists at me. "See you sometime, Broken Halberd Sinks Into Sand!"
I smiled back and returned the gesture politely. "See you!"
The Armored Ice Qilin Horse let out a neigh, and I rode past the Mad Dragon players with the Phantom Wolf King beside me. It felt good. Life wasn’t all about fighting, and sometimes being a good boy was just as rewarding as a battle won.
It wasn’t long before the sky started snowing. Near the peaks, snow was a normal and never-ending phenomenon.
On the way, I had to circle around a bunch of Polar Bears. Although they were Level 160 ancient mobs, I was Level 153 now. This meant that only mobs who were 20 levels higher than me—Level 173 or above to be exact—could satisfy my needs. Unfortunately, it looked like Dragonbone Mountain Range wasn’t good enough for me anymore.
I continued riding forward until a tall mountain that looked like a dragon’s neck rising to the sky appeared in front of me. The peak was covered by black clouds, and it was mostly covered by ice and snow. However, I did catch a glimpse of some pine trees growing between the rocks.
The Divine Dayflower was said to grow atop frozen rocks, meaning it was highly likely that it could be found on this peak. If it wasn’t here, then I couldn’t think of another place in the entire Sky City domain where it might exist.
The Armored Ice Qilin Horse was slightly strained because it was running on snow. The sound of its hooves crunching against snow sounded weirdly pleasant. When I reached the bottom of the mountain, I received a system message—
System Notice: You have entered the neutral map, "Ice Dragon Ridge"!
I looked up. The goddamned thing literally seemed like it stretched endlessly from where I was. Who knows what could be living on top of this mountain? It made me imagine a giant that was exploring the depths of space; a dragon of boundless proportions. It really was an amazing art of nature.
There was a somewhat obscure mountain path in front of me, and I urged the Armored Ice Qilin Horse to gallop along it. The path circled around the entire mountain, but many parts of it were missing due to nature’s course. My mount was able to leap over the gaps repeatedly, but I could almost feel its primal fear. It was rather obvious that my mount’s legs lacked the usual strength it possessed.
The Phantom Wolf King was far more courageous than it was. Its claws gave it solid footing on the icy rocks, meaning there was no chance it was going to fall off a cliff or anything of the sort.
Suddenly, a loud roar broke out from the path ahead of us. A gigantic ice creature that looked like a mix between a wild bear and a mad lion rushed toward the Phantom Wolf King and slapped it in the head, even dealing some frost damage in the process. The little wolf screeched in pain and lost 17822 HP instantly!
Holy shit, what the hell is this monster? Its attack power is insane!
I trained my eyes on it and activated Dark Pupils. Its stats immediately appeared before me—
Frozen Predator (Ancient)
Skills: Rend, Freezing Strike, Beastial Passion
Introduction: Guardian of the Ice Dragon Ridge. Frozen Predators were giant beasts before they were seduced by the power of evil and corrupted into terrifying monsters. These cruel monsters have protected the Ice Dragon Ridge for tens of millions of years, and the number of human warriors who perished under their giant claws is innumerable.
Alright, a Level 175 ancient monster! Now this was a mob that deserved my attention!
I activated Thunderous Charge from behind the mob and stunned it successfully. I immediately followed up with a devastating Burning Blade Slash. Although the Frozen Predator was covered from head to toe in thick, icy armor, the flaming energy easily cut into their flesh. The Level 175 mob might have 3250 Defense, but it might as well not exist before my current attack power. Burning Blade Slash was able to do an insane amount of damage—
Awesome! I even dealt a critical hit during the last hit, deleting over 100k HP, about one-third of the mob’s health, just like that. Burning Blade Slash really was the strongest burst damage skill I possessed. Another War Crush later, the Level 175 mob dropped to half health.
The Phantom Wolf King roared and swiped at the Frozen Predator madly. It was also regenerating health at a rate much faster than the ancient mob’s because of its status as an Immortal Rank boss pet.
Less than half a minute and two skills later, the Frozen Predator dropped dead and caused a bump in my experience bar. Tsk tsk, not bad. If I could draw a bunch of mobs to me and kill them en masse, I should be able to level up very quickly. Moreover, I had 10% lifesteal, Tenacity of the Dead, Regeneration of the Undead, and Rank 9 Saint Spirit Potions. I could easily solo these mobs provided that I could find a good choke point.
The Frozen Predator dropped a card when it collapsed on the ground. I picked it up and it was pretty useful—
Frozen Predator Card: Increases user’s damage by 75% when using ice-based skills. Duration: 120 minutes.
Tsk tsk! What an incredible buff! This was perfect for those mages who majored in ice-based skills. For example, that Hall of Immortality super mage called Galaxy Breaker Mage had an AoE skill called Icicle Flurry. If he buffed himself with a Frozen Predator Card and increased his ice attacks’ damage by 75%, his Icicle Flurry would be unstoppable by most mobs or players. Even Famous Generals like Li Chengfeng or Gui Guzi wouldn’t be able to tank his spells without flinching.
I threw the card into my bag since I had no use for it right now. Speaking of which, I had spent gold to expand my personal warehouse to ten thousand slots, so I could afford to throw anything inside. The good thing about warehouses was that your items were perfectly safe inside it. You wouldn’t lose anything you kept in a warehouse even if you got murdered to Level 0.
I continued forward after packing my stuff, and less than half a minute later, I ran into two Frozen Predators. They came at me from left and right and hit my Crimson Rock Dragon Armor with Freezing Strike!
I took massive amounts of damage even with my current Defense. Another warrior or magic knight would already be crying foul at this point.
I swung my sword horizontally and forcefully separated the two mobs. Then, I ordered the Phantom Wolf King to handle one mob while I handled the other. While fighting, I consciously adjusted my angle so that my Burning Blade Slash could hit both mobs. Otherwise, my DPS would drop, and it would take forever to climb to the top. Also, no one had ever discovered this Ice Dragon Ridge, and no information about it could be found in the forums. It was why I was almost certain that there was something fishy about this place. It didn’t matter though. No matter what stood in my way, high-level boss or something else, I would overcome it for the sake of my Divine Dayflower!
As I continued to ride up the mountain, the path grew even more steep and narrow. Near the end, the path itself was almost completely gone, forcing the Armored Ice Qilin Horse to create new footholds by crushing the ice beneath its hooves. Tsk tsk, this high-level mount was seriously amazing. Both its survival instincts and protectiveness toward its master was top-notch. It was all thanks to Beiming. If she hadn’t given up her own top-tier wristguards to exchange for this mount’s egg, the Armored Ice Qilin Horse might’ve become Candlelight Shadow’s or even Warsky’s. That would’ve been incredibly bad for us. Love you, Beiming.
About an hour and many dead Frozen Predators later, I managed to collect a dozen or so Frozen Predator Cards. I’m sure they would be very useful in the future. 
I tried to move forward, but the Armored Ice Qilin Horse came to an abrupt stop. After exchanging stares with my mount for a moment, I looked to the front and understood why it refused to budge. The "path" ahead was steeper than 45 degrees, and Earth Rank or not, the Armored Ice Qilin Horse was a land-bound mount. This was as far as it could climb.
I leaped back down to the ground and gave the Armored Ice Qilin Horse a pat in the head. "Good job, Armored Ice Qilin Horse. You can go back to the pet space now. I’ll climb the rest of the path myself!"
To my surprise, the Armored Ice Qilin Horse replied with a neigh before scattering into a shower of white light without any action from me. I should’ve known that high-level pets would have better AI. It actually understood what I said and returned by itself.
Behind me, the Phantom Wolf King wagged its tail and looked at me fervently. Clearly, it wanted to stay by my side and continue the journey until the end. This must be Dada’s soul at work, because the old wolf I knew would’ve ran all the way back to Sky City a long time ago. Anyway, it was time to focus on the task at hand, the task also known as rock climbing. A fall from this height was basically death, so I couldn’t afford to make a mistake.
I pulled out a sword from my bag to use as an ice axe. It was a Level 150, 2-star Outstanding Dark Gold–grade weapon dropped by a Frozen Predator earlier, and its name was the Blade of the Predator. It was just the right occasion to use it.
I started plunging the Cyan Netherworld Sword and the Blade of the Predator into the rock to scale the mountain. I could use my hands, but that would be way more dangerous and unreliable.
Behind me, the little wolf brandished its claws and clung tightly to the rocks. Not bad! Immortal Rank pets can even scale steep cliffs as if they were flat ground, it seems!
Clang clang clang...
Sparks kept erupting as I plunged the swords into the icy cliff repeatedly. The climb lasted for almost ten minutes before I looked up to check my progress. Holy shit, this cliff is almost vertical!
However, I caught sight of something that caused my eyes to light up. It was a translucent, cyan-colored flower growing between the rocks and swaying slightly to the blowing wind. It was the Divine Dayflower!