Library of Heaven is Path
1589 Dimensional Sand
The palace carried an ancient and distant aura to it, as if it had existed for innumerable years. It felt like a construction that had transcended history.
"This was likely left behind by Ancient Sage Ran Qiu. If there's really a Celestial Amulet of Legacy here, it's probably inside!" Luo Ruoxin said.
With just a glance, it was apparent that the palace was extraordinary. It was not an infrastructure that ordinary beings were capable of constructing, and the means that were concealed within would strike fear even in the hearts of Great Sages. This did seem like the work of Kong shi's strongest disciple.
Activating his Eye of Insight, Zhang Xuan quickly scanned the area around the palace, and a moment later, he said grimly, "The trail ends here. Most likely, the four of them have already entered the palace. Let's quickly enter as well!"
Knowing how important this matter was, the three of them quickly flew for the palace ahead of them.
While the palace might not have appeared to be too far away from them, roughly twenty li at most, they swiftly found that something was amiss. No matter how swiftly they tried to fly toward it, they found that the palace was still the same distance away from them, as if the gap between them and the palace had not reduced at all.
"Have we fallen into another Illusory Formation?" Zhang Xuan asked with an awful expression.
He had met with such a situation back at the Old Sword Maestro's Sword Lagoon. It was like a supernatural incident. No matter how far he walked, he would end up coming back to the same spot.
Could this be the same situation as well?
"No, that's not it." Luo Ruoxin had noticed the problem as well, and a frown formed between her eyebrows. "If I'm not mistaken, it's likely to be Dimensional Sand!"
"Dimensional Sand?" Zhang Xuan was perplexed.
Even Wu Chen was unable to make sense out of it.
"I read about it in a book of records. Dimensional Sand is the byproduct of a collapsed space, and if the sand is gathered back together, it is possible to recreate a complete space. However, traveling through Dimensional Sand poses a huge challenge," Luo Ruoxin explained. "To make an analogy, it is similar to rowing a boat against the currents—the faster you row, the greater the counter force will be. As a result, no matter how powerful a cultivator is, they will be forced to stand helplessly before it, unable to advance a step at all.
"In other words, while we might feel as if we are traveling at a normal speed, the flowing space amid the Dimensional Sand is constantly repelling us, causing our movements to be as slow as a snail, thus creating the effect that we aren't advancing at all!"
"There's actually such a thing in the world?" Zhang Xuan was astonished.
He had never heard of Dimensional Sand before, but Luo Ruoxin's explanation made perfect sense to him. In a way, it was similar to running on a treadmill. While one was attempting to run forward, the treadmill would push one backward, thus resulting in zero net progress. No matter how fast one ran, one would be bound to the spot, unable to advance at all.
"If that's the case, it should be impossible to advance through here. Yet… how did those four manage to get through this obstacle?" Wu Chen frowned in doubt.
In terms of strength, they did not pale to the group of four that had come ahead of them, so why would the four of them be able to advance successfully through the Dimensional Sand while they could not?
"Most likely, they must have used some kind of artifact to seal the movement of the Dimensional Sand. Once the flow of the sand is stopped, it shouldn't be too difficult to travel past it," Luo Ruoxin explained.
"Isn't it possible for us to use spatial wormholes to leap past the Dimensional Sand? This way, we will be able to circumvent it, right?" Zhang Xuan asked.
Previously, Wu Chen had made used of spatial wormholes to cover a distance of several million li in the blink of an eye. Considering how the distance between them and the palace was just twenty li, it should be much easier than before.
"The theory behind traveling through spatial wormholes is somewhat similar to that of Teleportation Formations. You're not wrong in saying that we would be able to leap past the Dimensional Sand, but the problem is that Dimensional Sand is not stable in the first place. If we attempt to travel across it using a spatial art, I fear that it might create spatial turbulence. While this folded space is unexpectedly stable, I don't think it would be wise to try its resilience against spatial turbulence," Luo Ruoxin replied with a deep frown.
Even an Introspective Convalescence realm cultivator would have trouble surviving in spatial turbulence, so attempting to leap over it would be extremely dangerous to Zhang Xuan. Furthermore, it could lead to instability in the folded space that they were in, and that could potentially lead to many undesired outcomes.
"So, is there no way for us to get past it?" Zhang Xuan frowned.
It was impossible to fly over it, and Spatial Leaps were too dangerous to be utilized. The palace was right in front of their eyes! Was there really no way for them to get over there?
"That isn't necessarily the case. As long as we are able to hold the Dimensional Sand still like they did, we should be able to travel through it easily," Luo Ruoxin said.
"Hold the Dimensional Sand still?" As Zhang Xuan asked, his gaze instinctively drifted over to Wu Chen.
The adolescent boy's comprehension of space was on par with even the experts of the Luo Clan. Perhaps, he might have a solution to the quandary that they were in.
Sensing Zhang Xuan's gaze on him, Wu Chen shook his head. "If I had the Luo Clan's Dimensional Silencer, I might still be able to pull it off. However, I fear that I won't be able to do so in my current state!"
"It's a treasure that the founder of the Luo Clan found by chance. It wields the ability to hold space still and calm spatial turbulences. The Dimensional Sand in front of us is difficult to deal with, but with the Dimensional Silencer, we would be able to halt its flow directly!" Wu Chen said with a nod of his head.
"The Dimensional Silencer is so formidable?" Zhang Xuan widened his eyes in astonishment.
He had long heard that the little princess of the Luo Clan, together with her Dimensional Silencer, wielded frightening prowess that would strike fear in the hearts of any cultivator. However, he had not sparred with her before, and deep within his heart, he still regarded her as the innocent and courteous little lass who addressed him as her teacher.
He had never really thought that the Dimensional Silencer would actually be so formidable.
"The Dimensional Silencer is a formidable artifact, and from the feeling I get, Luo Qiqi is still far from unlocking its true prowess," Luo Ruoxin remarked with a nod. "However, there's no point talking about this right now. The Dimensional Silencer isn't here, and even if we were to head out to fetch it right now, we wouldn't make it back in time."
"That's true…" Zhang Xuan nodded helplessly.
As powerful as the Dimensional Silencer was, they did not have it with them at the moment.
Furthermore, after the deep wound that he had dealt to Luo Qiqi's heart, no matter how thick-skinned he was, he could not possibly bring himself to head to the Luo Clan and borrow their Guardian Artifact!
"Speaking of the Dimensional Silencer, an idea suddenly came into my mind. If we were to… No, that wouldn't work either. Never mind!" Wu Chen suddenly interjected, but halfway through his words, a bitter smile broke out of his face, and he shook his head.
Zhang Xuan turned his gaze over and asked, "Feel free to voice of any ideas you have in mind. We might be able to build on them to derive a feasible solution."
"Actually, the Luo Clan and Ancient Sage Qiu Wu's comprehension of space are derived from the Dimensional Silencer. As such, the Quintessence of their spatial heritage lay in sealing and stabilizing space. If any of us are able to comprehend it, we will be able to halt the flow of the Dimensional Sand and easily fly across it!" Wu Chen said.
"However, Spatial Quintessence is much harder to grasp than other Quintessences. It took me countless years to achieve my current understanding of space, and I had to browse through innumerable ancient texts before I finally succeeded…"
Hearing those words, Zhang Xuan suddenly recalled a matter and asked, "If I divide space by the levels of Compress, Traverse, Control, Creation, and Destruction, which realm would I have to reach in order to comprehend the Spatial Quintessence of the Luo Clan?"
"If you were to divide it by those levels…" Wu Chen pondered for a moment before replying, "You should be able to comprehend the Luo Clan's Spatial Quintessence by reaching the fourth level, which is the level of Creation!"
"The fourth level?"
Those words made Zhang Xuan's eyes light up in agitation, and his lips crept up confidently. With a heated look in his eyes, he asked, "You mentioned earlier that you have many ancient books concerning space… Do you, by any chance, have them with you? I would like to browse them!"