Tzzzzzzz!

The mercury-like spiritual energy swiftly poured into Zhang Xuan's meridians through his acupoints.

Kacha! Kacha!

But as if someone had injected lead into his body, his meridians immediately began cracking as he felt an incredible weight trying to pull him down from within. He hurriedly drove his Heaven's Path zhenqi to repair the cracks and reinforce his meridians to withstand the mercury-like spiritual energy. Nevertheless, his face continued to redden, and a moment later, fresh blood spurted out of his mouth.

"It doesn't work…" Zhang Xuan shook his head helplessly.

He had thought that he would be able to absorb the mercury-like energy with the recent advancement in his cultivation, but his expectations had been dashed.

If he attempted to force his way through, it could be foreseen that his meridians would be shattered, and his dantian would collapse. Putting aside trying to assimilate the mercury-like spiritual energy into his zhenqi, his body would first be destroyed by the massive burden!

"It's a pity that I don't have the vine anymore." Zhang Xuan sighed deeply.

If he still had the vines of the Dongxu Gourd, he would have been able to use it to further alter his meridians and allow him to slowly adapt to the mercury-like spiritual energy, but that was clearly out of the question now.

Just as Zhang Xuan was wondering if he should seek another method, a thought suddenly arose in his head.

Wait a moment, that shouldn't be. Those two Otherworldly Demons were able to absorb the mercury-like spiritual energy, and even Vicious succeeded…

Ancient Sage Yan Qing had once experimented with the mercury-like spiritual energy, and of the initial ten subjects, two Otherworldly Demons had eventually survived the crushing pressure from the mercury-like spiritual energy. Vicious definitely did not have the vine of the Dongxu Gourd, but he had succeeded as well.

Considering that his meridian network was even more perfect than the Otherworldly Demons, it did not make sense for him to fail. There had to be something else that they had that he did not that resulted in such a massive difference in results.

Could it be the Zhenqi of Slaughter? If I alter the attribute of my zhenqi to that, will I be able to absorb the mercury-like spiritual energy more smoothly? Zhang Xuan wondered.

It was not as if there was anyone whom he could consult, so he decided to immediately try it out. He swiftly altered the attribute of his Heaven's Path zhenqi to simulate the Zhenqi of Slaughter, and in an instant, it was as if he had become a lofty Otherworldly Demon Emperor.

After altering the attribute of his zhenqi, he opened up his acupoints once more and carefully took in the mercury-like spiritual energy.

Tzzzz!

This time, when the same mercury-like spiritual energy entered his body, it surprisingly did not feel as heavy as before. Instead, it felt warm and soothing, as if gulping down a bowl of warm chicken soup.


"It's working!" Zhang Xuan clenched his fists tightly in exhilaration.

As the current Sovereign Chen Yong, Liu Yang possessed the ability to freely alter his zhenqi to that of the Zhenqi of Slaughter as well, but his meridians had never been changed before. It was likely that this was why he was unable to absorb the mercury-like spiritual energy.

However, it was different for Zhang Xuan. Back when he was stripped down to his bones during his fight with the deity in the capital of the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe, he had used the unique aura that the deity gifted to Sovereign Chen Ling in order to recover, and he had made sure to alter his meridian network to one that was more aligned with the world.

With those changes, he was actually able to absorb the mercury-like spiritual energy smoothly without any problems.

After absorbing for some time, he finally felt the bottleneck that was preventing him from reaching the Dimension Shatterer realm.

"Shatter!"

At that moment, Zhang Xuan's consciousness was within the Great Codex of Spring and Autumn in the Library of Heaven's Path, which resulted in a tenfold acceleration for the time of his consciousness. Mercury-like energy poured out of the Azure in bulk, but every single bit of it was swiftly swept into a vortex that led straight into Zhang Xuan's body.

Zhao Ya, Kong Shiyao, and the others were astonished, and they swiftly retreated several steps away from the elevated platform.

They had noticed that their teacher was able to absorb the heavy spiritual energy ever since his aura transformed into one similar to an Otherworldly Demon, but they did not think that he would actually be able to cultivate so quickly!

Under the relentless downpour of such a huge quantity of the mercury-like energy, the elevated platform was crushed under the pressure.

Due to the effects of the Great Codex of Spring and Autumn, Zhang Xuan was able to cultivate at an unbelievable speed. Nevertheless, it took him nearly an entire day before he was able to push his cultivation up to the very brim, where he was unable to accumulate any more energy.

Hong long!

It was around half a day later before he finally released the energy and took the final step into the Dimension Shatterer realm, just like Zhao Ya. Surprisingly though, perhaps because he had become the World's Teacher, the heavens did not call an Ordeal of Lightning Armament upon him as a result of his breakthrough.

After reaching this realm, he swiftly noticed that he was facing the same problem as Vicious and Zhao Ya. No matter how much he tried to absorb the mercury-like spiritual energy, he was unable to advance his cultivation in the slightest. It was as if his dantian and meridians had reached a sated state, preventing him from absorbing any more energy.

"What a pity!" Zhang Xuan remarked with a shake of his head as he halted his cultivation and rose to his feet.

The advancement in his cultivation had given him a deeper understanding of what the mercury-like spiritual energy truly was.

Simply put, it was spiritual energy condensed to the extremities, resulting in its unbelievable weight. As the meridians of ordinary humans were simply too weak, it was impossible for them to adapt to it.

On the other hand, the Otherworldly Demons possessed a superior constitution, and their meridian network was much more logical than that of normal human cultivators. As such, there was a chance that they could adapt to the mercury-like spiritual energy and enjoy a significant boost in their cultivation.

As for why the Zhenqi of Slaughter was required to cultivate the mercury-like spiritual energy, Zhang Xuan did not have a clear answer yet, but he did notice that the two energies shared similar attributes to one another. Perhaps, the Zhenqi of Slaughter facilitated the absorption and flow of the mercury-like spiritual energy, and the similar attributes also meant that it was less likely that one's body would reject the mercury-like spiritual energy.

Seeing that both Zhao Ya and their teacher had achieved a breakthrough to the Dimension Shatterer realm one after another, Zheng Yang, Kong Shiyao, and the others could hardly contain their agitation. "Teacher, is it possible for us to cultivate the heavy spiritual energy too?"

If the two of them were able to absorb the heavy spiritual energy, would they be able to do it in the near future?

Zhang Xuan shook his head grimly. "For the time being, it's impossible for the rest of you."

Altering the meridians of an individual was no laughing matter. Even with Zhang Xuan's current means, he did not dare take the matter lightly.

The reason Zhao Ya had been able to succeed was because her meridians had been replaced with the extraordinary vines of the Dongxu Gourd, but even so, luck played a huge part as well. Many complications could easily have occurred, such as her succumbing to the pain or her body rejecting the vines of the Dongxu Gourds.

On the other hand, Zhang Xuan had only managed to alter his meridians because he was already reduced to a skeleton, and he had the 'recovery energy' from the deity that had allowed him to swiftly heal his body. Otherwise, just trying to recover would have been a pain in his backside, let alone making use of this opportunity to alter his meridians.

Without such fortuitous encounters, it would be hard for the rest of his direct disciples to succeed as well.

Hearing those words, the crowd could not help but lower their heads in disappointment.

"It's indeed impossible for ordinary humans to absorb this energy. The Hundred Schools of Philosophers have tried many times, but not even the most talented geniuses were able to adapt to it!" Kong Shiyao added with a bitter smile.

There was no one on the Master Teacher Continent who knew more about the mercury-like spiritual energy than the Hundred Schools of Philosophers.

For many generations, they had guarded this seal, and within this period of time, they had already fully familiarized themselves with the nature of the mercury-like spiritual energy.

With so many talented individuals failing in the past, it did not seem likely that they would all be able to overcome this limitation any time soon.

"Even though you might not have succeeded thus far, with time, your body should gradually get used to the mercury-like spiritual energy," Zhang Xuan said.

"Based on the records from tens of thousands of years ago, the population then couldn't even survive three seconds in the face of the heavy spiritual energy before their meridians ruptured completely. However, the current population, including those who have yet to cultivate, can last for at least ten minutes in the face of the mercury-like spiritual energy as long as they don't absorb it into their body!" Kong Shiyao nodded in agreement.

"Hmm?" Those words brought a frown to Zhang Xuan's face. "Why would that be? Allow me to take a look!"

By right, the situation for ordinary humans should not change by too much. Even if the Greensprout Wheat altered the constitution of ordinary humans, a Fighter 8-dan cultivator should still be as powerless in the face of the mercury-like spiritual energy as a Fighter 1-dan cultivator, but there was actually such a huge difference over time. Could it be that the Greensprout Wheat had altered something else?

Zhang Xuan swiftly spread his Spiritual Perception across the entire Great Phrontistery of Confucianism, and he swiftly located some of the ordinary citizens.

"The Greensprout Wheat has not only enhanced their constitution; it seems like their meridian network has also developed in a much different manner compared to the cultivators of the Master Teacher Continent." Zhang Xuan was shocked.

He did know that the Greensprout Wheat had strengthened the bodies of those living in the Kunxu Domain, granting them the strength of Zongshi realm at maturity, but he had never thought of checking their meridians.

Over many years of development, the meridian network of the local population was starting to show some similarities to that of the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe! This explained the significant increase in the duration that they were able to withstand the mercury-like energy.

"Perhaps this is the path that mankind is destined to walk on in order to advance further…" Zhang Xuan sighed deeply.

Initially, Zhang Xuan had intended to find a different way for Zheng Yang and the others to adapt to the mercury-like spiritual energy, but the sight that he had just seen changed his mind altogether.

It felt like the only way to truly adapt to the mercury-like spiritual energy was through altering one's meridians, and if Zheng Yang and the others were to go around it the normal way, it would be impossible for them to succeed in their lifetime.

However…

In order for them to alter their meridians, they would have to first destroy their meridian networks, but the Aeon of Ancient Sage that they would require to make a full recovery was so massive that it was not an amount that he could procure.

Furthermore, what if they were unable to reform their meridians after shattering them?

Zhang Xuan pondered deeply for a moment before asking, "Shiyao, where are Ancient Sage Yan Qing and the others?"

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