The three devils could tell that she'd already made up her mind, but they still begged her to reconsider.
"There's nothing to reconsider here. If I don't make this trip, my injuries will never be fully healed, and if my enemies from the holy realm pursue me all the way to this realm, I'll be completely powerless to resist. On top of that, I'll also be assigning duties to you here, so you won't be able to slack off, either," the woman said with a decisive shake of her head.
"Please give us any orders you may have, Sacred Ancestor," Duo Yan hurriedly urged in a respectful manner.
The other two devils also stirred upon hearing this.
"During my slumber, has the inter-realm passageway leading to the holy realm been opened again?" the woman suddenly asked.
"Nothing had happened to the passageway for man years, but not long ago, we've begun detecting faint fluctuations from the other side. The fluctuations are very slight, but it seems that the beings of the holy realm are trying something again," Duo Yan replied in a truthful manner.
Both Tie Mo and Xue Bi also adopted solemn expressions upon hearing this.
"I see. Come to think of it, they should've had enough time to recover already, so it only makes sense that they're making a move now. I'm going to leave you three with a method to set up a massive spell formation that can temporarily bolster the power of the boundary between realms by around twofold. As such, it'll become quite a difficult task for the beings on the other side to open up the passageway again. However, creating this formation will require a vast amount of labor and resources, so the three of you will have to supervise the process in order to construct the formation as quickly as possible. During my absence, you can focus on this task," the woman said in a calm voice.
"Yes, Sacred Ancestor!" the three devils replied in unison.
A thought the suddenly seemed to have occurred to the woman, and she asked, "Oh, by the way, has anything urgent happened during my slumber?"
After exchanging a glance with his two companions, Tie Mo replied, "There have been some noteworthy things that have happened in these mountain ranges during these past years, but most of them aren't worthy of being brought to your attention, Sacred Ancestor. However, there are two things that I must inform you of."
"Oh? Go on, then," the woman urged.
After a brief hesitation, Tie Mo finally mustered up his courage, and said, "Prior to your entering your slumber, you gave us a segment of the damaged Profound Heavenly Fortune Blade for us to look after, but it was stolen by a holy-grade devilish that then escaped from the mountain ranges, so we don't know where the blade segment is now."
"A segment of the Fortune Blade was stolen? Who is this devilish ape and how did it appear in these mountain ranges?" A hint of coldness crept into the woman's gentle voice.
"That devilish ape is most likely one of our pursuers that was unwittingly swept into this world back when you opened up the inter-realm passageway. It possesses a holy-grade cultivation base, but it hid itself very well, and we failed to notice it for many years. During a time in which I was away, the ape suddenly attacked and stole the blade segment that was in my secret chamber. My negligence has resulted in the loss of the treasure, and I'm willing to accept the punishment for my oversight." Tie Mo lowered his head as he owned up to his mistake.
The woman was silent for a moment before chuckling in a nonchalant manner, "Hehe, back when the Fortune Blade was destroyed, it had already lost most of its powers, and it's since been split into three segments, so even I won't be able to repair the treasure. Seeing as there's no way to repair it anyway, it's no big deal that one of its segments was lost. What's the other thing you'd like to inform me of?"
Tie Mo heaved an internal sigh of relief, and it was quite clear that a massive weight had been lifted from his shoulders as he said, "Thank you for sparing me from punishment, Sacred Ancestor. The other thing is that Sacred Ancestor Ming Luo's steed, the Black Abyss Crocodile, has recently successfully progressed to the holy-grade. As such, it would be unwise to continue letting it do as it pleases in the mountain ranges. What's your opinion on the matter, Sacred Ancestor?"
"Oh? So even that devilish crocodile has become a holy-grade being; that's a pleasant surprise. In that case, I need someone to run some errands for me in my upcoming trip, so I'll bring it along with me," the woman chuckled upon hearing this.
Her laughter was like heavenly music that was very intoxicating to listen to, and all three devils naturally nodded in agreement with this proposal.
"Then, what the Fortune Blade Segments that we're in possession of..." Xue Bi asked in a careful manner.
"Those things aren't very useful to me, so you can keep them as weapons to protect yourselves," the woman replied with a nonchalant wave of her hand.
Xue Bi and Duo Yan were ecstatic to hear this, and both of them immediately extended grateful salutes. "Thank you, Sacred Ancestor."
With those blade segments, their powers would be significantly boosted.
Tie Mo was naturally quite envious toward them, but a thought then suddenly occurred to him, and he bowed as he continued, "By the way, Sacred Ancestor, we discovered an immortal zoysia in the mountain ranges, which is a creature that's equivalent to a humanoid devilish spirit. Are you interested in it, Sacred Ancestor?"
"A being that's equivalent to a humanoid devilish spirit? Such a thing exists in our mountain ranges? That thing would be ideal for cultivating avatars, and it would require a vast amount of time and effort to nurture one. I can't afford to place too much of my focus on it at the moment, so you three can capture it and do with it as you please." The woman was rather surprised to hear this, but she then shook her head in a disinterested manner.
Duo Yan was rather taken aback by this response, and a hint of elation crept into his eyes.
Meanwhile, Tie Mo and Xue Bi exchanged a glance with one another, looking as if they were about to say something, but refrained from doing so in the end.
"Alright, I've only just awakened, so I'm going to meditate for about a month before I leave these mountain ranges. After that, the three of you can take care of all of the matters in these mountain ranges without having to report anything to me." Seeing as everything important had been discussed, the woman waved a sleeve through the air, and pink light surged forth.
In the next instant, the three devils felt their surroundings blur before they abruptly found themselves outside of the stone gate, as if they hadn't even walked through it in the first place.
This was a rather shocking development to them.
"Even though our Sacred Ancestor hasn't recovered all of her powers, her abilities have only become more profound. Looks like we won't have to worry about her when she goes out into the Spirit Realm," Tie Mo sighed in a relieved manner.
"Indeed. Besides, our Sacred Ancestor has already made up her mind, so we won't be able to dissuade her anyway. All we have to do now is to follow her orders and do as we're told," Xue Bi chimed in with a nod of his head.
However, Duo Yan's eyes were slightly narrowed, and a fake smile appeared on his face as he said, "So that immortal Zoysia is a being equivalent to a humanoid devilish spirit; no wonder you two are so interested in it. The Sacred Ancestor has told us to capture the treasure and do with it as we please, so it'll be a contest between us to see who can obtain the item first. In that case, I'll be going on ahead now."
As soon as his voice fell, Duo Yan Immediately made a hand seal without waiting for a reply from his two companions. A gust of inky-black devilish winds swept forth, and he abruptly disappeared on the spot.
"That old bastard sure is impatient!" Tie Mo scoffed in a disdainful manner.
"Hehe, Brother Duo Yan must be feeling that he's already fallen behind in this race, so he naturally has to make haste. However, the fact that we haven't heard any news about the immortal zoysia indicates that it most likely hasn't been captured by any of our subordinates. On top of that, your avatar was also destroyed not long ago, so the treasure has most likely fallen into the hands of an outsider. Looks like the outsiders who've ventured into these mountain ranges are no ordinary beings," Xue Bi said in a slow voice as a crimson light flashed through his eyes.
"That's hard to say; perhaps the immortal zoysia is still on the loose and hasn't fallen into anyone's hands yet. In any case, it's most likely too late for Duo Yan to make arrangements in an attempt to capture it now. After all, those outsiders can only stay in our mountain ranges for a month, and most of them are not too far away from the exit already. Even if you and I were to get involved, there's no way we'll be able to get there in time. If I'd known that this would happen, I would've deployed more of my subordinates to search for the treasure," Tie Mo mused in a remorseful manner.
"Haha, it's not that you didn't want to deploy more beings; you were simply afraid that doing so would attract attention from myself and Brother Duo Yan, right?" Xue Bi chuckled.
"You can think whatever you want, Brother Xue Bi. I have to go back and wait for further news on the situation, so I'll also be taking my leave now," Tie Mo replied with a nonchalant smile, then also quickly departed from the palace.
Xue Bi looked on expressionlessly at the palace gates for a long while before letting loose a cold chuckle. All of a sudden, crimson light flashed from his body, and he melted like a candle, disintegrating into a puddle of crimson liquid that seeped into the ground.
Thus, the palace was completely emptied in the blink of an eye.
Elsewhere, Han Li had transformed into a barely visible shadow, and was hiding inside a nondescript black cloud.
The exit of the Golden Devil Mountain Ranges was several tens of kilometers away, and he was appraising it with blue light shimmering within his narrowed eyes.
The so-called exit was actually nothing more than a stretch of empty space that was only several kilometers in length.
If one wanted to leave the Golden Devil Mountain Ranges, this was the place through which they could do so.
The entire space seemed to be completely empty, but through the use of his Brightsight Spirit Eyes, Han Li could see hundreds of grey shadows and balls of black Qi lurking nearby out of plain sight.
Han Li stroked his chin as a contemplative look appeared on his face, and he suddenly flipped a hand over to produce a purple talisman.
He plastered a talisman onto his body, and a cloud of purple mist wafted through the air with silver runes swirling within it.
After that, his body abruptly vanished into thin air.
Thus, Han Li drifted out of the clouds and flew through the air in an unhurried manner.
He'd already confirmed that there were no holy-grade beings in the nearby area, so he wasn't concerned that any devilish beast would be able to blow his cover, and he drifted along right out in the open in a blatant manner.
The devilish beasts lurking nearby didn't discover anything amiss, and all of them continued to remain in ambush.
Han Li was quite pleased to see this, and within mere moments, he was only just over 1,000 feet away from the exit.
However, right at this moment, a burst of colorful light suddenly erupted from a small five-colored beast's body without any premonition, and the light swept forth to encompass an area with a radius of over 10,000 feet.
Han Li felt a surge of heat rush over his entire body, following which the effect of his High Zenith Invisibility Talisman was abruptly broken.