Han Li cast his gaze throughout the surrounding area to find that they were still situated above the boundless ocean, and there wasn't anything of note to see nearby.
"We're about four or five days away from our destination. The node isn't very large, but it's situated in a secluded corner of the Xuan Wu Region, where the most bloodthirsty faction of the devilish army, the Violent Devil Race, is situated. These Violent Devils are extremely ruthless, and this place is far more chaotic than anywhere else in the entire Xuan Wu Region, so we'll have to proceed with caution," the Long Family Patriarch said in a solemn manner.
"If we had chosen a devilish node near Deep Heaven City, we would've been able to minimize the risk involved," the young woman from the Ye Family sighed in a forlorn manner.
"None of the spatial nodes near Deep Heaven City are suitable; I've already sent out scouts who have confirmed that only through this node can we directly reach the Bloodstone Mountain Range of the Elder Devil Realm. The Bloodstone Mountain Range is an extremely barren place, so we shouldn't encounter any danger there. Otherwise, if we enter the Elder Devil Realm through another node, we either run the risk of facing powerful enemies right away, or ending up too far away from our destination, thereby requiring a journey that's longer than necessary," the Long Family patriarch replied with a shake of his head.
The young woman chuckled, "I was just articulating a wishful thought; I have full trust in the arrangements you've made, Brother Long."
The Long Family patriarch merely smiled and remained silent.
At this moment, Holy Maiden Thousand Autumns approached the Long Family patriarch, and the two of them had a brief discussion before setting off with everyone else.
During the next four days, Han Li and the others encountered a few groups of patrolling devilish guards, ranging from around a dozen guards to over 100.
In contrast with the devilish beings that had appeared near Deep Heaven City, these devilish guards were noticeably taller, and they were wearing suits of devilish armor that were inscribed with blue devilish runes.
Of course, it would've been a simple matter for Han Li's group to kill these devilish guards, but they merely concealed themselves and flew over the guards without alerting them.
Even the most powerful beings among these devilish guards were only at the Deity Transformation Stage, so there was naturally no way they could sense a group of Body Integration Stage beings.
During the evening of the fourth day, a series of black spots suddenly appeared over the distant ocean, and after flying a bit closer, these dots were revealed to be a cluster of coral islands of different sizes.
The smallest of these islands were only several kilometers in size, while the largest were close to 100 kilometers, and the Long Family patriarch stopped before turning to Holy Maiden Thousand Autumns. "Fellow Daoist Thousand Autumns, there are most likely high-grade devilish beings situated up ahead; we'll be counting on you now. Everyone else, swallow the Devilfeign Beads that we distributed earlier. If we do get exposed, activate the devilish Qi within the beads right away, and we'll still be able to blend in."
Holy Maiden Thousand Autumns smiled and gave an affirmative response, then flipped a hand over to produce a white flag, which she waved through the air to produce a torrent of countless white flowers, all of which exploded in rapid succession.
A cloud of white mist that was around an acre in size immediately appeared in mid-air and enveloped the entire group.
After that, Holy Maiden Thousand Autumns began to chant something, then waved the flag through the air a few times, and a series of five-colored runes began to appear within the white mist. Everyone within the mist then began to blur before finally vanishing into nothingness.
Everyone was ecstatic to see this, while Han Li's expression remained calm as he released his spiritual sense into the surrounding mist.
Moments later, a hint of surprise flashed through his eyes.
This mist contained some kind of restriction, making it completely undetectable even to his immense spiritual sense. Han Li's eyes narrowed slightly as blue light flashed within his pupils, and he was finally able to catch sight of that layer of white mist, which had formed a protective barrier.
However, even through his spirit eyes, the mist was extremely faint and barely visible. This instilled Han Li with a great deal of confidence in this restriction, and his expression eased slightly as the blue light in his eyes faded.
This type of concealment naturally wouldn't be able to fool him, but unless there were some devilish lords up ahead who possessed special secret techniques, none of the high-grade devilish beings would be able to see through this cover.
The other human cultivators in the group were also quickly becoming aware of how profound this mist was, and they were very pleased and intrigued by this discovery.
Right at this moment, Holy Maiden Thousand Autumns suddenly tossed the flag in her hand forward, and it transformed into a streak of white light that guided the entire cloud of white mist forward.
Han Li and the others each produced a black bead that they swallowed, then concealed their auras before flying ahead along with the misty restriction.
Thus, the group flew into the cluster of coral islands in the blink of an eye.
Close to 100 kilometers away from them, spatial fluctuations erupted, following which a pink ball of light appeared.
After the light faded, two humanoid figures were revealed, one of whom was a woman in a white palatial dress holding a purple copper coin in one hand. She was accompanied by a burly black-armored man who wore an extremely respectful expression as he stood beside her.
The purple copper coin in the woman's hand suddenly vanished as she said to the burly man, "Hei'e, make some preparations; I'm going to conduct heavenly divination here."
"Mistress, you still haven't fully recovered from the backlash of the last heavenly divination; surely it's not a good idea to use it again in such a short time," the black-armored man said in a hesitant manner.
"Conducting heavenly divination twice in succession will naturally be very taxing on my body, but this could be my only chance to make a full recovery, so I can't afford to miss it," the woman replied in a nonchalant manner.
"This is just a group of Body Integration cultivators! If you're willing to entrust the Origin Quake Mace to me, I can kill all of them and find the spirit medicine that you're searching for," the burly man said in a display of loyalty.
"The Origin Quake Mace is indeed very powerful, but at your current cultivation base, you won't be able to make full use of its powers. On top of that, the warning from the Destiny Copper Coin indicates that these people definitely possess measures that can counter the Origin Quake Mace anyway. Alright, that's enough idle chatter; begin the preparations right away. If we delay any longer than this, it'll be quite a hassle to catch up with them again," the woman said.
His body swayed, and in the next instant, he appeared over 1,000 feet away before rubbing hands together, then spread them apart to release eight objects.
These were eight black wooden dolls, each of which was only around half a foot tall. They possessed disproportionately large heads that were comparable to the size of their bodies, and they all wore different and extremely life-like expressions.
After releasing the eight wooden dolls, Hei'e rotated on the spot to release hundreds of stone slabs out of his body, all of which abruptly converged up ahead to form a green stone platform that was around 70 to 80 feet tall.
The stone platform had countless vibrant green patterns engraved over its surface and was giving off an indescribable primordial aura.
Hei'e then flipped a hand over to produce a shimmering blue crystal ball, which he hurled viciously toward the ocean down below.
The crystal ball vanished into the ocean in a flash, following which Hei'e pointed a finger down below, and gargantuan waves that were several thousand feet tall were suddenly swept up.
The waves rose up into the air to form a blue water barrier that encompassed the stone platform, as well as the eight wooden dolls.
Only then did Hei'e cups his fist in a salute, and said in a respectful voice, "The altar is ready, Mistress."
The woman nodded in response before descending into the water barrier in an unhurried manner.
She then made a hand seal and began to chant something, upon which the water barrier began to shimmer with blue light.
The nearby space warped, and the entire water barrier gradually became transparent before vanishing into nothingness.
At the same time, the eight wooden dolls drifted forward to appear on the stone platform with two wooden dolls standing right next to one another on each corner.