Chapter 180 – [Confronting Houtian]
Chapter title is a spoiler, highlight it to read it now, or see it at the bottom.
As for the red quartz, Lin Ming didn’t know why, but he had an intense foreboding feeling that if he were to miss this opportunity to choose it, then he would never be able to obtain it again.
Therefore Lin Ming gave up the relatively safe route of choosing pills, and instead chose the red quartz.
“As you wish.”
With a thought by Yan Mo, the other two treasures were taken away, and only the red quartz with that crimson filament inside remained.
“Smelting trial human, the treasure you have chosen of the three is the most precious, and was also the most difficult to obtain. Since you chose this treasure, then you will receive no additional rewards from the sixth level, the Divine Envoy trial. In other words, if you cannot break through the seventh level, then you will receive nothing more than what you have already obtained at the fifth level and below.”
As Yan Mo spoke, Lin Ming had started to become unbearably excited until it reached cloud nine. But as he continued, Lin Ming’s mood plunged to rock bottom.
This gamble was simply too high. If he was unable to pass through the seventh level, then it would simply be the same as trying to fetch water with a bamboo net!
Lin Ming had been counting on receiving some sort of power from the sixth level. Even if it wasn’t something that increased his cultivation, it might be some other form of strength. He had felt that he had a slight chance to pass the seventh level, but now that hope had evaporated.
He had to pass the seventh floor in a single go!
Yan Mo had already vanished after speaking. Lin Ming didn’t waste any time. He immediately sat down with legs crossed, pulled out a true essence stone, and began to revolve the ‘True Primal Chaos Formula’.
This time, his recovery time was much longer. Before he attempted the sixth floor, he had to restore his strength to its peak condition and adjust his mental state to its maximum. In the last 19,000 years, there hadn’t been a single person that came to the Sorcerer Pagoda who was able to pass the sixth level.
Outside of the Sorcerer Pagoda, Na Yi had already been waiting a very long time. Na Shui was off in a corner, asleep. She was just like a cat that was curled up in a corner of the chamber, covered from head to toe by Na Yi’s coat.
Na Yi estimated that it should be early morning, nearing dawn.
Yet nothing happened within the Sorcerer Pagoda. This caused Na Yi to feel somewhat distressed. Had he really entered into the Divine Kingdom? Why was he in the Divine Kingdom for such a long time? Was there some accident that had occurred?”
In the records of Na Yanda, he hadn’t specified how long he had been inside of the Divine Kingdom. But, according to the entries before and after he entered, and the descriptions of the surrounding environment and when he had lunch and dinner, Na Yi was able to roughly estimate that he had stayed within the Divine Kingdom for one or two hours.
But Lin Ming had been inside for at least four or five hours!
What caused Na Yi to feel the most anxious, was that Na Yanda had recorded that of those who entered the Divine Kingdom, if their strength was insufficient or they were incompetent, then they could die!
Na Yi instantly clutched her chest as she felt her heart tighten. There were several times that she had wanted to enter the Sorcerer Pagoda to investigate, but she had refrained from doing so. After all, everyone only had one chance to enter the Sorcerer Pagoda, and now was not the best time for her.
And most importantly, it was simply useless even if she did enter the Sorcerer Pagoda. Her strength was just too far from Lin Ming’s.
Na Yi fretfully rubbed her forehead. She groped the rough sheepskin pages in her hands, restless.
“Big Sister…” Na Shui’s sleepy voice called out from behind.
“Mmm? Ah Shui, you’re awake.”
“Big Sister, what time is it?” Na Shui said as she yawned and stretched. After an evening of sleeping on the rough stone floor, her back was sore. Luckily for her, she was a martial artist. If she was just a normal little girl that had slept on such a floor for the evening, her back would already be bruised black and blue.
“I’m not sure. It should be just before dawn.”
“Oh… Big Brother Mo still hasn’t come out?”
“No…” Na Yi sighed.
“Big Sister, do you think that Big Brother really entered the Divine Kingdom? If he comes out, then wouldn’t he be a hero just as great as Na Yanda?”
Na Yi reluctantly nodded and said, “He should be…”
That was only if he came back safely…
Lin Ming finally stepped into the sixth level of the life and death smelting trial – the Divine Envoy.
When he came to this world, Lin Ming saw that he stood within a massive open white temple, floating in air. Surrounding the temple were 9 columns shaped like coiling dragons, each one over 1000 feet high, reaching the sky.
Lin Ming stood in a vast square in front of this building. Around him, celestial mountains were suspending in the air, and towering waterfalls tens of thousands of feet high poured down the celestial mountainsides in raging torrents, turning into countless silver beads before they fell into the bottomless void.
In front of Lin Ming, there was a middle-aged man wearing blue clothes and carrying a longsword strapped to his back, facing away from Lin Ming. His hair was tied in a tight knot, half black, half white, and more than two feet long.
Lin Ming looked at this man’s cultivation, and his heart chilled.
He was actually a Houtian master!
He was only an early Houtian master. However, there was an essential qualitative change between a Pulse Condensation Period martial artist and a Houtian master.
Lin Ming felt bitterness swelling in his heart. His bone age was less than 16 years old, and yet he had to face a Houtian master on the sixth floor!
If one searched the entire Sky Spill Continent, would one be able to find a 15 year old boy that had the strength of a Houtian realm master?
The middle-aged man silently turned around. His face seemed hazy, as if there was light and shadow within. Without a doubt, this was the enemy that Lin Ming had to defeat.
This was also the first time that Lin Ming would be facing a Houtian realm master.
The difference between the peak Bone Forging stage and the early Houtian realm was a stage and a half. That may not have sounded like much, but in the martial arts path, the disparity between each realm of cultivation only increased.
From Bone Forging to Pulse Condensation, the meridians of one’s body would be opened and connected, and true essence would be able to flow through freely and unimpeded, This was already a major leap. From Pulse Condensation to Houtian, true essence would gather within the Dantian and augment the entire body’s meridians endlessly. This was also a major leap.
Lin Ming was not sure that he could bridge these two massive qualitative leaps in cultivation and deal with a Houtian realm master.
“Take out your spear.”
Lin Ming was surprised. Not only did the middle-aged man speak, but he also used the language of the Realm of the Gods.
Lin Ming gripped his spear in his right hand. His elbow was pressed against the shaft, and the base rested against body. He pointed this nearly 10 foot long spear at the middle-aged man and challenged him.
The middle-aged man drew his longsword and slowly said, “You… are doomed to lose to me.”
As the sword point left the scabbard, there was only a clarion ring that sounded out as the air was split apart by the sword. The middle-aged man wielded his sword and pierced towards Lin Ming.
The middle-aged man’s speed was simply absurdly extreme as it neared the limit. And his sword came from an inconceivable angle. No matter how one wanted to dodge, they could not escape from that sword.
“Flow like Silk!”
Lin Ming shouted and thrust forth with his spear. Since he could not see through the middle-aged man’s sword path, Lin Ming would use his strength to break his move, and use a massive amount of vibrating true essence to block the sword.
The sword wind dispersed. However, Lin Ming’s 5000 vibrating true essence filaments were mostly destroyed in return. He tapped his toes and quickly drew backwards.
He had consumed a large amount of true essence, but it was manageable. Lin Ming began to revolve the ‘True Primal Chaos Formula’, and the heaven and earth origin energy around him continuously poured into his body, rapidly restoring the true essence that he had used. Lin Ming’s cultivation was now only at the peak of Bone Forging, but his stamina and endurance far surpassed that of a normal Pulse Condensation Period martial artist.
That light shadow martial artist showed a hint of curiosity and sent an astonished look towards Lin Ming who was able to fend off his sword.
The light shadow martial artist flicked his wrist and the sword pierced forwards exactly like before. However, this time there was a layer of red light that covered the blade. It was clear that the light shadow martial artist had used a martial skill!
A Houtian realm master’s martial skill attack!
Lin Ming tightly clenched his jaw, and his entire body erupted with a flood of true essence. Flames like flickering red lotuses blossomed on the coldly shining tip of the Heavy Profound Soft Spear. The flames moved and twisted together with the 5,000 vibrating true essence filaments, charging towards the light shadow martial artist’s sword as if they were a legion of fiery dragons.
There was no flashy or fancy move as the spear and sword simply struck against each other. A blast of true essence exploded like a shock-wave as it scattered in all directions. Although Lin Ming was able to fend against the light shadow martial artist’s sword, he wasn’t able to stop the shockwaves. The raging true essence was similar to hidden weapons that broke into Lin Ming’s body. It was like several dozen knives had been stabbed into Lin Ming’s organs; the pain was terrible!
Although Lin Ming felt as if the blood within his organs was roiling, after examining himself, he found that there wasn’t a serious injury.
“Mm? I withstood it?”
Lin Ming was ecstatic. The defensive capabilities of his body had surpassed even his own high expectations. He had been able to defend against the sword wind of a Pulse Condensation Period master, and now he was also able to ward off the true essence aftermath waves of a Houtian realm master’s attack!
“Since you could arrive at the sixth level, you truly are extraordinary!”
The middle-aged man revealed a hint of appreciation. He no longer looked down on Lin Ming because of his cultivation.
As Lin Ming watched the middle-aged man’s expression change, a thought swelled in his mind. This middle-aged man was not a puppet that was condensed from heaven and earth origin energy, but was actually a living person.
Was he the same as Yan Mo; also once a servant of the Sorcerer?
“Come again!” The middle-aged man flicked his long sword and came rushing towards Lin Ming.
“True essence manifestation!”
Lin Ming lifted his spear to meet the attack. The two exchanged a number of moves. Although each move wasn’t particularly fast, every strike and attack was filled with a raging and fierce force of true essence.
Since the light shadow man’s cultivation far exceeded Lin Ming’s, it had almost only been him attacking, while Lin Ming could only dodge and defend.
Although he had the power of thunder and fire along with the Flow like Silk ability, Lin Ming was still in perilous danger. If it wasn’t for the elusive Golden Roc Shattering the Void movement technique, then he would have had no way to repeatedly dodge the middle-aged man’s sword wind, and would already have lost by now.
Peng peng peng peng peng peng!
Several dozens of attacks had already been exchanged between the two. Turbulent true essence broke apart the jade terrace of the celestial palace; the broken jade chips were like countless water drops that sprinkled from the sky like shimmering waterfalls!
In such fierce collisions, the light shadow man was not injured, however, Lin Ming actually suffered the repeated aftermaths of the seething true essence shockwaves. If it wasn’t for the green energy from the Witch Slave that had altered his body and increased his defensive power, then his organs would have already ruptured and he would have lost long ago.
With an explosion, Lin Ming was sent flying backwards several hundred feet. He barely raised himself up with the support of the Heavy Profound Soft Spear, and wiped away the dripping blood stains from the corners of his mouth. He was injured, but there wasn’t anything too serious. With his powerful blood vitality supporting him, Lin Ming could even feel that his internal injuries were slowly recovering.
Although he wasn’t seriously injured, the question still remained.
How could he win?
Chapter 180 – Confronting Houtian