Library of Heaven is Path
863 Sabertooth Spirit Tiger
Chapter 863: Sabertooth Spirit Tiger
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
As soon as he headed back to the entrance of the straw cottage, he saw Hu Yaoyao, Xue Zhenyang, and the others stepping off the back of a massive spirit beast.
Half a month ago, they had still been the domineering and powerful leaders of the four most powerful student factions in the academy. However, at this moment, as if little chicks meeting a mighty eagle, they were devoid of the arrogance that they held before, and a hint of fear could be felt from their body language.
They might still be considered rivals from before, but at this instant, they had become nothing more than juniors to him. They couldn't pull their weight before him even if they wanted to.
"Zhang shi, are you ready to set forth now?" Hu Yaoyao asked.
"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded.
"Great. Let's get on the spirit beast then!" Hu Yaoyao beckoned Zhang Xuan onto the spirit beast that they had been riding on a moment ago as she prepared to leap on herself.
"Let's ride on another one, that one over there is too slow…" Zhang Xuan shook his head as he sent a signal through his mind. A moment later, an ape-like saint beast emerged from the back of the straw cottage.
"Senior Byzantium Helios?"
"The old principal's tamed beast?"
"Didn't Senior Byzantium Helios go missing?"
Hu Yaoyao, Xue Zhenyang, and Long Cangyue leaped in shock as they stared at the young man before them as if they were gazing at a monster.
They were all direct disciples of the school heads of the Master Teacher Academy, so they were privy to the news regarding Senior Byzantium Helios's disappearance as well…. How could he be with Zhang shi?
Furthermore, from the looks of it, the relationship between the two of them didn't seem to be simple.
In contrast to the shock of the others, Dong Xin remained composed.
She had personally seen how Senior Byzantium Helios had addressed him as master, and she also knew that the Ten Great Master Teachers and Mu shi had nominated the young man before her as the next principal as well.
However, due to the grave importance of this matter, she didn't reveal it to anyone.
"If we ride on him, we should be able to obtain the Scarlet Firefly Fruits and return within three days!" said Zhang Xuan, before turning to the Byzantium Helios Beast and instructing, "Byzantium Helios, we will be counting on you."
"Yes, Master!" the Byzantium Helios Beast nodded.
With crisp echoes from the bones throughout its body, its physique immediately grew threefold, turning its originally large physique into something resembling a mini mountain.
After which, it walked forward to take the room on top of Dong Xin's spirit beast and placed it on its back.
"Let's set off!" Zhang Xuan said as he leaped onto the Byzantium Helios Beast's back.
On the other hand, watching as the old principal's saint beast of the academy turn into a mount, Hu Yaoyao, Xue Zhenyang, and Long Cangyue were completely flabbergasted, and they couldn't help but think that either the world had gone mad or they hadn't awoken from their dreams yet.
They had heard of how prideful Senior Byzantium Helios was, so it was hard to believe that not only would he acknowledge Zhang Xuan as his master, he would even… willingly serve as a mount! Even though they were witnessing the sight personally with their own eyes, they couldn't help but find it inconceivable.
Even after they had entered the room on the Byzantium Helios Beast's back and soared into the clouds, they were still unable to recover from the blow.
After a long moment of silence, Xue Zhenyang suddenly recalled something and exclaimed in astonishment, "My teacher told me that the person who found Senior Byzantium Helios would be the next principal of our academy!"
His teacher, Xu Changqing, was the head of the Martial Arts School. The other party had once told him that Mu shi had spread the word that he would decide the succeeding principal based on whoever found the Byzantium Helios Beast first. For the Byzantium Helios Beast to have acknowledged Zhang Xuan as its master, could it be that…
"I was forced into it. Sigh, I wouldn't have accepted it if there was any other way around it!" Seeing that Xue Zhenyang had figured it out, Zhang Xuan thought that there was no need to hide the matter from them, so he shook his head with a sigh.
If it wasn't for the principal's privilege to access all of the books available in the academy, he would have never accepted this troublesome role.
As the principal, his actions would be publicly scrutinized, and any problem that occurred in the Master Teacher Academy would be attributed to his incompetence.
It was not as if this was anything good, so there was no need to make a huge fuss over the matter.
"You were… forced into it?"
"You wouldn't have accepted it if there was any way around it?"
Hu Yaoyao, Xue Zhenyang, and Long Cangyue rolled their eyes upon hearing Zhang Xuan's words.
It is actually possible to be forced into becoming the principal of the Master Teacher Academy?
Why can't such fortune come to us instead?
We would have loved to be forced into it as well…
Putting the matter aside for the moment, Zhang Xuan turned to Hu Yaoyao and instructed, "Hu Yaoyao, show me your battle technique!"
Since he had promised Wu Yangzi to take care of his descendant, he had no intention of reneging on his words.
"Alright!" Knowing that Zhang Xuan was going to offer her some pointers, Hu Yaoyao nodded and began executing her strongest battle technique.
A moment later, after gaining a thorough understanding of the flaws in Hu Yaoyao's cultivation, Zhang Xuan began offering her some pointers.
It must be said that Hu Yaoyao was a rare gem. Not only was she knowledgeable, she possessed extraordinary talent, and the foundation of her cultivation was extremely stable as well. With Zhang Xuan's guidance, she improved swiftly, especially in the field of terpsichorean arts. With her alluring figure, even a Half-Saint expert could be left in a trance after watching her dance.
Hu Yaoyao's rapid improvement had left the others with an itch in their hearts, and eventually, they could no longer hold back the urge to consult Zhang Xuan.
Zhang Xuan also offered them his pointers without any reservations, and the other three improved swiftly as well.
While they were still a significant stretch from making the breakthrough to Half-Saint, they did manage to further reinforce their cultivation. In their current states, as long as they were to obtain the Scarlet Firefly Fruit, it was almost a certain that they would be able to make a breakthrough.
Half a day passed in a flash.
By the time they were arriving in the vicinity of the Scarlet Firefly Fruit, the sun had just begun to rise from the eastern horizon.
Even though it was in line with Zhang Xuan's estimation, he still couldn't help but be amazed by the Byzantium Helios Beast's speed. As expected of a Saint 2-dan spirit beast, its speed and endurance were truly on a different level from spirit beasts.
"Let's stop here!"
Under Dong Xin's directions, the Byzantium Helios Beast landed right outside a mountain valley.
"Senior Byzantium Helios, I think it would be best for you to remain here. The Scarlet Firefly Fruit is guarded by two spirit beasts, and if they sense your presence by any chance, I fear that they might destroy the fruit out of desperation after realizing that they won't be able to maintain possession of it," Dong Xin said.
The instincts of a spirit beast should never be underestimated. The moment they sensed the Byzantium Helios Beast's presence, they might choose to take a position close to the Scarlet Firefly Fruit and hold it hostage, threatening to destroy it should they approach.
That would put them in an extremely disadvantageous position.
"I also don't think that it is a feasible plan to get past those two spirit beasts by brute force. Due to our lower cultivation, they won't view us as a huge threat and will be less wary around us. Our best shot at obtaining the fruits is to exploit their possible negligence toward us to sneak past their defense and obtain them discreetly," Long Cangyue said.
This was the plan they had derived after many rounds of discussion based on the intelligence they had gathered. Otherwise, they could have simply invited any of the elders over to help them overpower those two spirit beasts. There was no need for them to seek help from a nemesis.
"I am confident at masking my presence such that they won't be able to find me," the Byzantium Helios Beast said assuredly.
As a Saint 2-dan saint beast, it was an easy feat for it to conceal its aura from spirit beasts.
"It isn't that easy… Take a closer look at the valley ahead!" Dong Xin said grimly.
"The valley?" Zhang Xuan and Byzantium Helios Beast turned their sights to the valley ahead.
The valley was extremely narrow, reminiscent of a sealed box. Perhaps due to the presence of the Scarlet Firefly Fruits, it was rich in spiritual energy, reminiscent of a blessed land.
The first thing that the duo noticed upon looking into the valley was that it was filled with a particular flower. The flower carried a tinge of red, as if embarrassed to be looked at.
A certain plant surfaced in Zhang Xuan's mind, and deep frown emerged on his face.
"Are those Crimson Coy Flowers?"
The Crimson Coy Flower was similar to the mimosa in his previous life. Upon coming into contact with foreign objects, it would change its color depending on the strength of the intruder.
In other words, it would change into a differing color should a Saint approach the valley.
This was also why this flower was a common ingredient in formulating medicine used to gauge the cultivation of an individual.
"Indeed, those are Crimson Coy Flowers!" Dong Xin said with a bitter smile.
"I see…" Zhang Xuan nodded.
The Crimson Coy Flowers were extremely sensitive plants. Even if the Byzantium Helios Beast was able to conceal its aura perfectly, the flowers might still be able to gauge its true strength through its movements and other aspects.
Of course, it was unlikely for the two spirit beasts to destroy the Scarlet Firefly Fruits just because a Saint realm expert was in the area, but this was a risk that they couldn't afford to take.
After getting a clearer glimpse of the situation, Zhang Xuan waved his hand and instructed, "Byzantium Helios, you should rest for the time being then. Don't worry, nothing bad will happen. Besides, it won't be too late for you to make a move if we really encounter danger."
"Yes, Master!" the Byzantium Helios Beast replied.
After which, it flew into the distance, and once it was out of sight, it returned to the Myriad Anthive Nest.
Given Zhang Xuan's current strength, there was no cultivator beneath Half-Saint that was a match for him. Besides, he could keep the Byzantium Helios Beast by his side via the Myriad Anthive Nest and release it immediately if they encountered a difficult situation, so there was nothing to worry about.
Without any hesitation, the group began heading into the valley.
As soon as they stepped into the valley, a ripple of color began to spread across the Scarlet Coy Flowers, as if transmitting information of some kind.
"What are the spirit beasts guarding the Scarlet Firefly Fruits?" Zhang Xuan asked as the group advanced deeper into the valley.
"They are both Chrysalis realm pinnacle Sabertooth Spirit Tigers!" Hu Yaoyao replied.
"Sabertooth Spirit Tigers? No wonder…" Zhang Xuan nodded in realization.
It was not without reason that the Sabertooth Spirit Tiger was famed as the strongest spirit beast beneath Half-Saint. Even though they were Chrysalis realm pinnacle experts as well, Hu Yaoyao and the others were hardly a match for a single Sabertooth Spirit Tiger, let alone two.
Defended by those two spirit beasts, it would indeed be extremely tricky to get to the Scarlet Firefly Fruits.
Of course, this wasn't a problem for Zhang Xuan.
If a fight were to really occur, he could easily settle it with two punches.
"That isn't the only problem. Those two Sabertooth Spirit Tigers are very cunning too. Regardless of whatever happens outside, one of them will always remain behind to guard the Scarlet Firefly Fruits. If anything were to happen, that Sabertooth Spirit Tiger might choose to destroy the entire tree… Thus, we can't just rely on brute force for this matter. We have to find a way to lure the both of them out simultaneously," Dong Xin said.
She had spent some time in this valley gathering intelligence for the operation, so she had gained a rough understanding of the habits of the two Sabertooth Spirit Tigers.
"Lure the both of them out simultaneously?" Realizing how tricky this matter was, Zhang Xuan frowned.
"That's right. Thus, we prepared the Origin Heavy Water that they are extremely fond of. However, due to our limited resources, we were only able to procure four bottles," Dong Xin said with a bitter smile.
Usually, when freshmen enrolled in the academy, their student factions were able to earn sufficient spirit stones to purchase even several dozen bottles of Origin Heavy Water. However, the freshmen this year had all chosen to join the Xuanxuan Faction, so they had failed to earn anything at all. On top of that, they even had some of the senior students in their factions betraying them for the Xuanxuan Faction…
As a result, they'd had to fork out from their own pockets, and altogether, they only had sufficient money to acquire four bottles.
"Four bottles of Origin Heavy Water?" Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up.
If he could acquire just one of those, he would be able to cultivate the Third Incandescence of his Quintuple Incandescence Golden Body.
"How do you intend to use the Origin Heavy Water?" Zhang Xuan asked.
After a moment of hesitation, Dong Xin revealed her plan. "The Sabertooth Spirit Tiger is extremely sensitive to the scent of Origin Heavy Water. Our plan is to open a bottle to lure the first Sabertooth Spirit Tiger out. Once the first one leaves, we will use the same trick to lure the second one out as well…
"Of course, we will have to ascertain that the Scarlet Firefly Fruits have matured first. Otherwise, our efforts will be futile."
Zhang Xuan shook his head. "It is unlikely that your plan will work.
"Once the Scarlet Firefly Fruits mature, even if the two Sabertooth Spirit Tigers don't consume them directly, they will surely harvest them and escape swiftly. Ultimately, no matter how alluring the Origin Heavy Water is to them, it can't compete with an opportunity to achieve a breakthrough to Half-Saint. Besides, I think you are underestimating the intelligence of the Sabertooth Spirit Tigers. They already possess intelligence on par with humans, so it is unlikely that they will fall for such a simple ploy."
With only a step away from reaching Half-Saint, those two Sabertooth Spirit Tiger were more than capable of keeping their instincts in check. It would be difficult to get past them with such a crude plan.
"What should we do then?" Dong Xin asked anxiously.
The others turned their gazes to Zhang Xuan as well.
"I do have a plan in mind, but I will need your Origin Heavy Water," Zhang Xuan said.<script>chaptererror();</script>