Library of Heaven is Path
Chapter 1056: Trap
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
Anyone who had visited Hongyuan City in the past would know the significance of the Bodhi Saint Tree to the Hongyuan royal family. It was the very foundation of the Yu Clan's rule. As such, they were reluctant to allow anyone to come close to it, let alone borrow it.
Given so, it was no wonder their thoughts would wander when they saw Zhang Xuan taking out an entire Bodhi Saint Tree with a casual flick of the wrist.
"Of course not! I planted the tree myself…" Not expecting the crowd to have such wild imaginations, Zhang Xuan was at a loss for words.
Naturally, the Bodhi Saint Tree in his hand was not the one from the royal palace but one that he had nurtured himself through the Bodhi Seed. He had been cultivating it in his Myriad Anthive Nest all along, and he was just retrieving it from there.
After hearing that Zhang Xuan did not forcefully snatch the Bodhi Saint Tree, the crowd heaved a sigh of relief. They were afraid that this would cause a conflict between the Master Teacher Pavilion and the Hongyuan royal family.
After the initial shock, a wave of excitement gradually spread across the crowd as they realized that they might have found the key to crossing the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion.
Wu shi stepped forward and said, "Let me give it a try and see if it's effective."
So far, it was still nothing but a hypothesis that a soul-type artifact would be able to fend off the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion. It still required some testing to confirm whether it would work or not.
Wu shi took the Bodhi Saint Tree from Zhang Xuan's hand, and driving his zhenqi, he propped the massive tree up and held it over his head. After which, he infused a surge of soul energy into the tree trunk, and the tree swiftly emanated a warm and comfortable glow.
The Bodhi Saint Tree did not just have the ability to nourish souls. It could also draw forth a peculiar strength if one infused one's soul energy into it.
After the preparations were done, Wu shi began making his way toward the black sandstorm.
Under the embrace of the warm glow of the tree, Wu shi stepped into the violent black sandstorm. This time, he was not battered by the sandstorm. The warm glow had neutralized the sandstorm that was heading his way. What Luo Ruoxin had said was true, soul-type artifacts were indeed effective against the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion!
"This is wonderful!"
"The Otherworldly Demons must have prepared a soul-type artifact in advance knowing that there was such a trial, thus allowing them to walk straight through the sandstorm without any trouble."
"With this, we will be able to pass through the sandstorm easily as well."
The eyes of the crowd lit up at that sight.
At the same time, a mystery that had been plaguing Zhang Xuan's mind suddenly unraveled before his eyes.
He had been wondering why the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe would go to the trouble of instructing You Xu to poison the Hongyuan royal family's Bodhi Saint Tree. Back then, it seemed like an excessive action—it was not like the Hongyuan Empire posed a significant threat to them. However, from the looks of it now… it seemed that they were just taking precautions.
As long as the Bodhi Saint Tree died, the master teachers would be helpless before the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion. They would be left standing helplessly at the starting line, lamenting their helplessness.
However, despite all of their calculations, they had failed to factor in Zhang Xuan's involvement. Who would have thought that someone would actually succeed in reviving the Bodhi Saint Tree and obtain the Bodhi Seed? Not to mention, to cultivate the Bodhi Seed into the mature Bodhi Saint Tree within such a short period of time…
Somehow, the aid that he had provided to the royal family back then ended up helping him in this crucial moment.
While he was deep in thought, Wu shi had finally returned from the black sandstorm.
At this moment, he did not look as excited as the others did. With a pale face, he placed the Bodhi Saint Tree back down onto the ground. Facing the crowd with a bitter smile, he said, "Infusing soul energy into the Bodhi Saint Tree does allow us to fend off the sandstorm, and the area of effect of the glow is sufficient for all of us to pass through simultaneously… However, this depletes soul energy simply far too quickly. Even with my current strength, I can only progress around a hundred meters before being sapped dry."
"A hundred meters?"
The crowd frowned.
From the looks of it, the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion covered at least several kilometers. As a Primordial Spirit realm pinnacle expert, Wu shi possessed the strongest soul of their expedition team. If even he only had sufficient soul energy to fuel the Bodhi Saint Tree to travel a hundred meters, there was no way they would be able to get to the other side.
It was not easy for a member of their expedition team to possess a soul-type plant, and they had also verified that it was effective against the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion. Were they really going to stumble here just because they did not have sufficient soul energy to push on?
"Let me give it a try…" Zhang Xuan took the Bodhi Saint Tree and propped it up above him. After which, he sent a surge of rich spiritual energy into it.
After roughly gauging the rate of depletion of his soul energy, Zhang Xuan smiled and said, "Everyone, gather under the tree. Make sure not to wander off!"
Right after saying those words, he began making his way toward the black sandstorm.
The crowd glanced at one another with conflicted expressions, but considering how confident Zhang Xuan was, they swiftly made up their minds and followed suit.
As soon as they stepped in, they could feel the calamitous power of the black sandstorm sweeping toward them, desiring to devour their existences whole. But when it came into contact with the warm glow of the Bodhi Saint Tree, the black sandstorm seemed to dissipate with a flicker.
Seeing that the sandstorm was unable to make its way through the Bodhi Saint Tree's defenses, Zhang Xuan heaved a sigh of relief before proceeding forward.
Due to the intangible nature of souls, it was often viewed a far less effective defensive means as compared to utilizing one's zhenqi or physical body. Yet, to think that it would be the key to fending off the devastating sandstorm before their eyes… A cyclical balance of power, the world sure worked in wondrous ways.
As Zhang Xuan marched forward, he discreetly sneaked a peek at the young lady not too far away from him. Luo shi seems a little too knowledgeable… Is she really just a 6-star master teacher?
Be it seeing through the Spatial Formation or figuring out that soul-type artifacts could fend off the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion, those were things that even Wu shi and Guild Leader Han were ignorant of! And yet, Luo Ruoxin seemed well-versed in such matters. The depth and breadth of her knowledge was truly astonishing.
Is this the capability that the offspring of Sage Clans wield? If that is truly the case, it was the right call to have Yuan Tao return to his clan, Zhang Xuan thought.
He had been a little reluctant to part with Yuan Tao back then, but it seemed like that was for the best. Not only would the latter be able to awaken his Emperor's Bloodline swiftly, his fighting prowess would also rocket.
Under the protection of the Bodhi Saint Tree, the crowd advanced steadily without any worries. However, after walking for some time, they gradually noticed that something was amiss, and shocked gazes were beginning to gather upon the young man before them.
So far… they should have already traveled around three hundred meters? And yet, the fellow before them did not seem to be exhausted in the least. In fact, he even had the leisure to allow his mind to wander, not even slightly strained by his exertion. Weren't the reserves of his soul energy a little too big?
This was especially so for Wu shi. At this point, his lower jaw was already on the verge of falling to the ground.
He had personally experienced the fearsome power of the black sandstorm himself, and it had caused his soul energy to deplete even before he could get far. On the other hand, Principal Zhang had extended his glow to cover everyone—a significantly larger rate of depletion as compared to his—and they had already traveled for more than three hundred meters now, and yet, the other party did not seem fatigued in the slightest.
It was truly hard for him to believe that a Nascent Saint possessed even greater soul energy than a Saint 4-dan expert.
That fellow is a true monster, Wu shi thought bitterly.
To think that he had intended to leave such a formidable figure out of their expedition team at one point in time… Now that he thought of it, he could not help but feel deeply ashamed of his ignorance then.
It was fortunate that he had eventually chosen to bring the other party along, or else they probably wouldn't even have passed the lava at the very start, let alone reach this point.
If I can only persist till a hundred meters, even if he's blessed with an innately powerful soul, five hundred meters should be his limit.
Thus, as they advanced forward, Wu shi kept a close eye on the young man before him, prepared to make a substitution should the latter run out of strength. Yet, they trod past the five hundred meters mark, and there were still no signs of exhaustion on the Zhang Xuan's face. It seemed as if the depletion of his soul energy that he had incurred so far was not even worth mentioning!
It did not take too long for them to travel a whole 5,000 meters. Walking at the very front, Zhang Xuan still had the same nonchalant expression on his face, as if the depletion of his soul energy was insignificant. Not only so, his footsteps also seemed to be getting lighter and lighter…
Wait a moment, h-he… he can't be cultivating while walking, can he? Wu shi eyes nearly bulged out from his eyes.
A rate of depletion that even he was unable to withstand, and yet, the other party could easily bear it and even cultivate while he was at it. Monster! That freaking monster!
Forget it. If I continue comparing myself with him, it is just a matter of time before I die of despondency. Consoling himself that the young man before him was an anomaly, Wu shi was finally able to soothe the turmoil in his heart.
With Zhang Xuan's seemingly endless supply of soul energy, the end of the Black Sandstorm of Oblivion was soon in sight. There, a beautiful and resplendent manor reminiscent of a celestial palace could be seen. Floating before an enormous waterfall, it left the crowd feeling as if they were stepping into a heavenly realm.
"How is that done?" Feng Xun widened his eyes in disbelief.
A cultivator had to reach Saint realm before they could free themself from the shackles of gravity and soar in the sky. Yet, for an entire palace to be floating in midair, creating such a mystical and wondrous sight… Just how powerful was the person who had achieved such a feat?
This was too exaggerated!
After a moment of pondering, Guild Leader Han said, "It is a clever manipulation of space. Even though it seems like it is floating in midair to our eyes, its true form could be something very different from that."
Hearing those words, the crowd slowly nodded.
Limited by their experiences and knowledge, it was extremely difficult for them to comprehend advanced formations. What seemed bewildering and inconceivable to them could very well be realized at a higher level.
"This is probably the core of the ancient domain. Let's hurry over to take a look!" Wo Tianqiong said with a gladdened smile.
They had overcome numerous trials in order to reach that point. Surely, they should have been nearing the end by now.
The spirited crowd quickly made their way over to the celestial palace.
Not too long later, a massive heavenly gate that carried an air of divinity appeared before their eyes. Stepping through it, they immediately felt rich spiritual energy gushing in their direction.
Stepping into the celestial palace, Zhang Xuan frowned doubtfully. "Why do I feel like there is something peculiar about this place?"
While the entire building was shrouded in an air of divinity, Zhang Xuan could not help but feel that there was something off with the place.
"Peculiar? Principal Zhang, it must be your imagination this time around…" Laughing heartily, Wu shi was just about to continue speaking when the ground abruptly jolted beneath them.
In an instant, the resplendent celestial palace seemed to have suddenly turned into a living hell. An air of desolation swiftly permeated the area.
Sou sou sou!
An overwhelming aura of maliciousness swept across their surroundings like a raging storm. Following which, surge after surge of sword qi burst forth, weaving a huge net that left them trapped like insects in a cage.
Wu shi's eyes narrowed as he hurriedly bellowed, "Damn it, it's a formation trap by the Otherworldly Demons!"
Only the Otherworldly Demons could possibly release such a sharp and cold aura of maliciousness!
Peng peng peng peng!
In the next moment, three Nascent Saint combat masters were sliced into pieces under a simultaneous burst of sword qi. Even Feng Xun's shoulder was wounded by the sword qi, causing a stream of crimson blood to flow down his arm.
The formation had changed so swiftly that there were already casualties even before they could process what was going on. Swiftly recovering from his daze, Guild Leader Han quickly roared, with veins popping from his temples, "Defense!"
In that instant, they all realized that they had fallen into a trap laid by the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe. They swiftly drew their weapons and drove their zhenqi.
Ding ding ding ding!
No matter what, their expedition team was still made up of elite master teachers and combat masters. Even though they had been caught off guard, the fighting prowess they wielded as a whole was still spectacular once they got back on track.
With their collective might, the sword qi aimed toward them was easily deflected away.
"To be able to come here so quickly, I must say that you are not too bad. However, I'm afraid that this place will be your burial ground…"
At this moment, a cold and eerie voice sounded in the air.
Following which, the horrified voice of the Violetleaf King sounded in Zhang Xuan's ears.