Chapter 240 – Mountain Gate Trial
‘So they had this idea all along; it seems they’ve taken a fancy towards my Huoluo Nation’s Seraphic Pond?’ Martial House Master Luo wasn’t stupid. He knew that there was something strange with the way Qin Ziya was speaking a moment ago, it turned out he was trying to deliberately provoke him.
It seemed that they really had confidence in their Lin Ming. Perhaps that little boy really might be able to jump over a realm and fight a middle Pulse Condensation period martial artist. But, Wang Mu wasn’t an ordinary middle Pulse Condensation period martial artist. His combat prowess was able to compare to the late Pulse Condensation period. If this was their wishful thinking, their carefully laid plans had all gone wrong.
Martial House Master Luo narrowed his eyes as he began to size up Lin Ming. He was wondering whether or not this young boy in front of him would be able to deal with a late Pulse Condensation period martial artist. However, it was only a very low probability. The difference between the Bone Forging stage and the Pulse Condensation period was simply too big. For a normal talent, even jumping over half a realm was considered incredible. But to jump over an entire realm was extremely rare – even within the Seven Profound Valleys Total Faction.
Since the chances of winning were greater than the chances of losing, Martial House Master Luo intended to agree to this gambling bet.
He said, “The Seraphic Pond is an important land of my Huoluo Nation. There is only a finite amount of inherent true essence contained within the waters, every year we can only send 3 or 4 people to use it. And to think you even want to soak in the waters a few times, your appetite is quite big!” Although Martial House Master Luo knew that the chances of winning were greater than losing, he still wanted to hedge his bets and give himself a way out.
“Then how about one time?” Lin Ming knew that the first time soaking in the Seraphic Pond would be the best. If he bathed in the waters too much, the effects would lessen to an unnoticeable degree.
Wang Mu thought that Lin Ming was simply a blithering idiot. In his opinion, Lin Ming was simply digging his own grave and personally handing out such great treasures like the Blue Miracle Pill and the Body Spiritual Ichor. The former was a top tier pill, able to increase one’s cultivation and the latter was able to wash down one’s muscles and marrows, removing pill toxins from their body. If these two were used together, their effects would be the best.
If he was able to take these two medicines, then his cultivation would increase and he would become much closer to reaching the late Pulse Condensation period.
However, why would this idiot Lin Ming have the Blue Miracle Pill and Body Spiritual Ichor and not use them on himself? Instead, he was actually ripping himself off and giving them to others.
Thinking about the future Blue Miracle Pill and Body Spiritual Ichor, Wang Mu excitedly licked his lips, looking at Martial House Master Luo. Martial House Master Luo nodded his head, agreeing to this gambling bet.
Wang Mu hurriedly said, “Okay, if I lose, then you can use Huoluo Nation’s Seraphic Pond one time. I won’t take advantage of you, I will also take an oath on my heart of martial arts!”
Wang Mu was afraid that Lin Ming would later renege on his promise, so he also tacked on an oath on his heart of martial arts as insurance.
Wang Mu and Lin Ming both clapped their hands together as they made their oath, both looking quite happy. Martial House Master Luo looked at Wang Mu with a smiling face, but as he glanced at Lin Ming’s even brighter smile, he had a feeling that something was wrong.
With two people laughing, there had to be one of them crazily giggling inside…
One hour later, a beautiful and exquisite melody began to descend from the Profound Sky Mountain Range. Lin Ming looked up and saw a blue boat gently floating over. The boat was several dozen feet long, and glittered all over with strange runes and symbols. There was a hazy halo of light that wrapped around the boat like an eggshell, and at the front of the boat there were three people standing side by side. Two of them were middle-aged men wearing purple, and one was a very beautiful woman in white.
Although they were far in the distance, Lin Ming could still feel a faint suppressive feeling coming from these three, not much inferior to the aura that Mu Qianyu gave out.
From just these three people’s cultivations, Lin Ming thought they might not be much weaker than Mu Qianyu. However, Mu Qianyu was only 27 years old. As for these three, they weren’t spring chickens anymore. The disparity was simply too great.
At this moment, Qin Ziya whispered, “The Total Faction Martial Meeting will have the presence of the Valley Masters. All three of them are Valley Masters of the Seven Profound Valleys. Stay still and don’t make any noise.
Facing the power and majesty of the three Valley Masters, even Qin Ziya felt suppressed. He unconsciously held his breath and stood there with hands relaxed.
The spirit boat stopped above the gate. The beautiful woman in white stepped forwards, and her ten fingers flashed as she made a series of seals. With a rumbling sound, the mountain rocks in front of everyone began to split, and giant crack emerged as stone began to pull apart. A 1000 foot long white jade tablet rose from the rocks and floated into the air. There was an array formation that was inscribed onto the white jade tablet and many seals and runes slowly circled it, shining iridescently. Underneath the white jade tablet, massive white jade steps appeared and formed a path forwards, extending almost 10,000 feet towards the distance gate.
In the square below, many of the young talents and geniuses were watching with wide eyes. For many of them, this was their first time participating in the Total Faction Martial Meeting, so they were ignorant about what would happen. They hadn’t dreamed that there would be such a massive white jade tablet hiding amidst the rocks.
“So this is the mountain gate trial.” Lin Ming narrowed his eyes as he saw the giant white jade steps. After acquiring the second soul fragment, he had a very deep understanding of array formations. He could see that the white jade steps underneath that tablet were actually an illusion formed by an array formation. This was an illusionary killing array!
There were 1080 steps altogether, each a foot high. The beautiful woman in white standing on the spirit boat said, “You have an incense stick of time to climb the white jade steps and enter the mountain gate! Light the incense!”
As the beautiful woman finished, she waved her hand and tossed a giant incense burner into the mountain square. There was a ten foot long incense stick that was as thick as an arm and was placed inside, already lit. Although this incense stick was 10 feet high, the rate at which it was burning was much faster than normal; it probably wasn’t any slower than a normal stick of incense.
Some of the first-time participants of the Total Faction Martial Meeting weren’t able to resist, and instantly launched their movement techniques to rush forwards, just like a flying locust swarm heading towards the white jade stairs. But, those martial artists that had already participated in the Total Faction Martial Meeting didn’t seem in a hurry as they slowly moved up the white jade steps one at a time. Looking at the newbies rushing upwards, these old timers tried to hide their smiles, waiting to see just how these new participants would suffer.
The white jade steps were a thousand feet wide; it wasn’t crowded even if two or three hundred people were standing side by side. After the first disciples stepped onto the white jade steps, a great number of symbols began to light up on the stairs. As these symbols circulated, a massive pressure suddenly pushed down on the jade steps. Several of the disciples who hadn’t been prepared were pulled down by this tremendous force and tumbled onto the jade steps, looking confused as they smashed into the floor.
“Be careful, there’s something strange about these stairs.”
Seeing so many disciples be defeated so quickly, some people began to cry out in alarm. But the truth was, this was just an obvious matter. If the jade steps didn’t have some unusual feature, then wouldn’t everyone be able to rush up the stairs in just an incense stick of time?
In the blink of an eye, several dozen disciples had fallen down onto the floor. But those disciples that were experienced hunched down in order to lower their center of gravity. As they stepped up the stairs one at a time, their speed began to fall.
At this time, the disparity in cultivation was suddenly reflected for all to see. A young girl in white and carrying a long zither didn’t seem nearly as affected by the pressure like everyone else. Her steps were like a cool breeze as she stepped towards the mountain gate in a relaxed manner. The mountain wind sent her clothes fluttering around. The young girl had a very calm demeanor; it was like she wasn’t even walking towards the mountain gate, but was instead taking a casual stroll.
“It’s the Zither Faction’s direct disciple, Qin Wuxin.”
Some people recognized the identity of the white-clothed young girl. All disciples were required to participate in the Total Faction Martial Meeting’s mountain gate trial; the direct disciples were no exception. But to them, this was simply a walk; the jade step’s illusionary magic array might as well only exist in name for them.
“The difference is too great!”
This thought was inevitably born in the hearts of some. These people were all outstanding talents from their martial families or countries, and had grown up under the halo of being a genius. But now, in comparison to Qin Wuxin, they were simply nothing at all.
This wasn’t enough to discourage them, but at this moment, two shadows rushed up the jade steps. Although they weren’t as calm and tranquil as the white-clothed girl, their speed was at least three times faster.
“Jiang Baoyun, let’s see which one of us is faster!” The youth speaking wore all white. He held a fan in his hands, and he looked like a handsome god fashioned from the purest jade.
Next to him was an 18 or 19 year old youth wearing all black, carrying a cold longsword on his back. His eyebrows were slanted like scimitars and he had a very solemn expression, his momentum was outstanding. This youth was the direct disciple of the Sword Faction, Jiang Baoyun, and the handsome man holding a fan on the side was the Acacia Faction’s direct disciple, Ouyang Ming.
The two of them were quick like phantoms. In only a few breaths of time, they had reached the middle of the jade stairs, where they stopped for a moment before continuing up to the entrance.
There were also some young and powerful heroes following behind Jiang Baoyun and Ouyang Ming. But, their strengths were much weaker, and they were barely standing on their feet, moving slowly step by step. With their turtle-like speed, they would probably not arrive at the mountain gate before the incense burned out, or even before sunset.
Qin Ziya’s group began to walk up. Ling Sen and Lin Ming took the initiative to walk up the jade stairs first. As soon as Lin Ming stepped on the first stair, he felt his body sink down and his speed tremendously fall.
“The direct disciples of the Seven Profound Valleys really do have some ability. Even a Pulse Condensation period martial artist would be suppressed under this formidable gravitational pull. But, there are actually some people that can shoot up these jade steps like meteors…”
As Lin Ming thought this, he changed the flow of true essence circulating in his body, and a surge of wind gusted around him as he activated Golden Roc Shattering the Void. Lin Ming’s body became as light as cotton, and he easily floated up to the top. He wasn’t fast, but his steps were incomparably calm, as if he was standing on clouds.
Although the jade stairs contained a terrifying gravitational force, it was fundamentally useless under the Concept of Wind and Golden Roc Shattering the Void.
Compared to Lin Ming, Ling Sen wasn’t so tranquil. He was obviously moving up the jade steps using his strength, but his speed actually wasn’t any slower than Lin Ming.
As Ling Sen saw Lin Ming look as if he were taking a casual stroll through the park, Ling Sen was startled. It seemed as if Lin Ming wasn’t using any effort at all, while he was using 70% of his true essence. The more Ling Sen got to know Lin Ming, the more he discovered that Lin Ming was simply unfathomable.
Zhou Yu and Liang Long watched Ling Sen and Lin Ming climbed up and exchanged bitter looks with each other. Sooner or later, they had to they eat the consequences. Now, they could only brace themselves.
“Lin Ming looks so relaxed, it shouldn’t be that difficult. At least, there should be some trick to it…” Zhou Yu consoled himself, and then he stepped onto the first jade step.
As he took a step, Zhou Yu instantly felt as if his body filled with lead, and he was drowning. Luckily, he had already mentally prepared himself for this, or else he would have already fallen flat on the ground and made a fool of himself.
“Such a strong gravitational force!” Zhou Yu pushed the true essence in his body to the limit, but he was still as slow as an ox pulling a broken cart.
Liang Long was even worse off than Zhou Yu. On the jade steps he felt like both of his feet had been trapped in quicksand. Every step took an enormous amount of strength. Seeing all the young talented heroes rushing past him, he could only shout out.
“Goddamn, are these fellows really human?”