Chapter 2224: Ancient Seal
Old Man Copper Crow parted his fingers to reveal a translucent crimson feather that looked as if it had been carved out of crystal.
He stared at the feather for a short while with a hesitant expression, then suddenly tossed it back to Bao Hua before taking a deep breath. "I didn't think that you would be fortunate enough to meet that senior, Bao Hua. In that case, I'll place my trust in you just this once. Tell us your plan."
"Thank you, Fellow Daoist; I'd be more than happy to share my plan. Does anyone else have any objections?" Bao Hua asked with a smile.
"We would all like to hear your plan, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua."
"Indeed, I'm sure that a plan proposed by Fellow Daoist Bao Hua would be a reliable one."
The other Grand Ascension Stage beings were quite relieved to see that Old Man Copper Crow was willing to compromise, and they were all eager to hear what Bao Hua had to say.
"Thank you for your kind words, everyone. Truth be told, I ventured into the original sealed site on a second occasion around half a year ago." All of the Grand Ascension Stage beings present were stunned to hear this.
"What? You ventured into the original sealed site again? How is that possible? How did you do that?"
Not only were the foreign Grand Ascension Stage beings astonished by this revelation, even the Sacred Ancestors present were completely dumbstruck, having clearly not heard about this in advance.
"There's no need to be alarmed, fellow daoists. I was able to do this as I've cultivated several profound concealment abilities, and also because I had the Faux Illusion Sky Mirror to assist me. Using that treasure, I was able to avoid alerting those stemborers, and once I entered the original sealed site, I discovered that some new developments had transpired, and those developments convinced me that it was possible to achieve both objectives simultaneously," Bao Hua explained.
"What did you see that made you change your mind, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua?" a Grand Ascension Stage being couldn't help but ask.
"Due to the power of the seal, I was unable to venture deep into the original sealed site and could only inspect the site from the outskirts. During my inspection though, I discovered that some changes seemed to have taken place in the ancient seal," Bao Hua revealed.
"What are those changes, Fellow Daoist?" another Grand Ascension Stage being asked with a serious expression.
"There's no need to be concerned. In a sense, these changes are a good thing. What I discovered was that the ancient seal seems to be in the process of repairing itself. Even though the process is extremely slow, the ancient seal is definitely more powerful than it was on the last occasion I ventured into the original sealed site, and it seems that seal possesses some level of sentience," Bao Hua replied with a smile.
All of the Grand Ascension Stage beings present couldn't help but exchange bewildered glances upon hearing this.
"I'm sure your appraisal is accurate, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua, but didn't you say that the power of the seal has already been controlled by the Stemborer Queen? How is it a good thing that the seal has become more powerful?" It was Jin Chai posing the question on this occasion.
"It seems that there's been a misunderstanding. The portion of the seal's power that has been enhanced is the portion still under the seal's control, not the portion that has been controlled by the Stemborer Queen. Even though this enhancement is quite insignificant compared to the overall power of the ancient seal, it's still something that we can take advantage of," Bao Hua replied.
"So how does that make it possible to achieve both objectives simultaneously? Hurry up and tell us your plan," Old Man Copper Crow said in an impatient manner.
"It's not my intention to waste anyone's time; I simply want to provide some background information so everyone can understand my plan," Bao Hua replied.
"Fine, keep going then," Old Man Copper Crow prompted in a disgruntled manner.
Bao Hua smiled as she continued, "During my last trip into the original sealed site, I discovered that the Stemborer Queen is situated in a different part of the seal from the place where our fellow daoists have been trapped. Regardless of which side we enter, it'll inevitably alert the Stemborer Queen, so my original plan was for everyone to combine their powers to reseal the Stemborer Queen, then save Fellow Daoist Yuan Yan and the others. Of course, doing so could enrage the Stemborer Queen, prompting it to use the power of the seal under its control to lash out at our trapped fellow daoists.
"If that were to happen, Fellow Daoist Yuan Yan and the others could be plunged into grave peril. However, after discovering that the ancient seal possesses a certain level of sentience, I theorized that it could be possible to help the ancient seal regain control over the portion of its power currently under the Stemborer Queen's control. If we can do that, not only will we be able to free our trapped fellow daoists, the Stemborer Queen will have to face the complete power of the ancient seal, and we may not even have to expend that much power to reseal the Stemborer Queen."
All of the Grand Ascension Stage beings in the hall displayed different reactions upon hearing this, and Han Li was also stroking his own chin in a contemplative manner.
Right at this moment, Old Man Copper Crow suddenly broke the silence. "Your plan seems to be quite feasible, but I have a question, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua."
"Go ahead, Fellow Daoist," Bao Hua prompted with a smile.
"Even if the ancient seal really is sentient, how confident are you that we can make it work with us? Without the assistance of the ancient seal, there would be no way we can recover the portion of the seal's power under the Stemborer Queen's control. Even the true immortals were unable to kill the Stemborer Queen; if your plan were to go awry we could be plunged into severe peril. If we get trapped in the original sealed site as well, the other realms most likely won't be sending any more reinforcements," Old Man Copper Crow said.
"Rest assured, Brother Copper Crow, I have a way to communicate with the ancient seal, which is why I hatched this plan in the first place. Back when I was one of the devilish patriarchs, I had once guarded the original sealed site for tens of thousands of years. In terms of understanding of the ancient seal, even Yuan Yan and Nie Pan can't compare with me," Bao Hua replied in a confident manner.
"I trust in your judgment, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua. I'm just here to save my descendant, and your plan doesn't conflict with that goal, so I have no objections," Old Man Copper Crow said with a smile.
Bao Hua nodded before turning to the other Grand Ascension Stage beings present. "Does anyone else have any questions? If not, let's move on to the more specific details. I already have a rough plan, but I'll need everyone's help to flesh it out."
A burst of hushed chatter rang out within the hall, and a few Grand Ascension Stage beings raised some questions about the ancient seal, all of which were answered by Bao Hua in a calm manner.
It was clear that Bao Hua had thought long and hard about this plan, and everyone was very pleased to see this.
Thus, everyone began to discuss the specific details of the plan.
The plan was ultimately finalized after a day and a night of debate and negotiation, and it was decided that everyone would set off in around half a month.
After that, the meeting concluded, and countless streaks of light flew out of the golden palace before quickly vanishing into the distance.
Han Li's trio had also departed from the palace, and he was searching for a mountain in the desert to stay in.
However, shortly after departing from the earthen city, Han Li's expression suddenly changed slightly, and he stopped in mid-air before casting his gaze off to the side. "Come on out, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua; why are you hiding and sneaking around like this?"
Silvermoon's heart jolted upon hearing this, while Daoist Xie stopped behind Han Li in an expressionless manner.
A pleasant voice rang out from the direction that Han Li was casting his gaze toward.
"I didn't think that you would progress to the Grand Ascension Stage in such a short time, Fellow Daoist Han. On top of that, I can sense that you're already far more powerful than the average Grand Ascension Stage being; looks like Yuan Yan was right to be wary of you."
As soon as the voice trailed off, spatial fluctuations erupted, and a massive pink flower projection appeared alongside Bao Hua and Hei'e.
Bao Hua was currently appraising Han Li with a calm yet intrigued expression.
"Why have you come to see me? Are you regretting your decision from last time?" Han Li asked.
"Perhaps, but if I hadn't done that, I wouldn't have been able to recover so quickly. On top of that, with your inclusion in this operation, I'm even more confident that we'll succeed," Bao Hua said with a smile.
"Surely you jest, Fellow Daoist Bao Hua. I'm just a rookie Grand Ascension Stage being; how will I possibly be of any significance? Did you stop me just to tease me?" Han Li asked as he appraised Bao Hua with a meaningful gaze.