Chapter 2265: Ancient Altar
Thus, the giant black ark paused in mid-air for a while longer before flying toward another direction, quickly vanishing into the distance.
Two months later, the mountainous Inkspirit Holy Ark appeared in the sky above a massive lush forest.
Han Li, Silvermoon, and Zhu Guo'er were all standing at the front of the ark, while Patriarch Hua Shi was standing slightly behind them with a respectful expression.
At this point, he had already been made aware that Han Li was the new Grand Ascension cultivator that had arisen from the human race, and he immediately abandoned all of the sneaky plots he was contemplating upon learning this.
During this period of time, he had guided Han Li's trio through this region in a very obedient manner, and they had visited several places that the ancient altar regularly appeared at.
Unfortunately, they still hadn't tracked down the altar yet.
"This is the next place you were talking about?" Han Li asked.
"Yes, Senior. This forest is very renowned among our demon race as a lethal region for all those below the Deity Transformation Stage. Beings of the Spatial Tempering Stage and above can ensure self-preservation in the forest, but anyone with a lower cultivation base than that will be very prone to losing their lives here. Not only is this forest filled with vicious natural traps, the demonic beasts here are extremely powerful, and there are also several species of poisonous insects that are very difficult to deal with. Of course, none of that applies to a powerful being of your caliber, Senior," Patriarch Hua Shi explained in a respectful voice.
Han Li nodded before asking in an expressionless manner, "Has the altar really appeared here before?"
"I've heard from several fellow daoists that they've seen the altar from afar on a few occasions at the center of the swamp down below. However, the altar is already damaged, so it doesn't have much use aside from some of the ancient runes on its surface that can be referenced by formation masters," Patriarch Hua Shi replied.
"In that case, let's go down there. I have a feeling that there's a 70% to 80% chance that the altar is situated here," Han Li said with a faint smile.
Silvermoon and Zhu Guo'er were both elated to hear this.
Thus, they descended from the giant ark toward the vast swamp in the forest down below.
There was a layer of poisonous green mist above the swamp, and no cultivator below the Spatial Tempering Stage would be able to stay in there for very long unless they possessed special protective treasures.
Furthermore, there were tiny wasp-like poisonous insects within the mist that were extremely difficult to expel once they entered one's body.
As such, this was indeed an extremely perilous place for the average demonic cultivator, but it was naturally nothing in the eyes of Han Li.
Several balls of silver flames erupted out of his body, and bursts of heatwaves instantly swept forth in all directions, eradicating all of the poisonous mist within an area of around an acre. All of the poisonous insects lurking within the mist were also instantly incinerated into nothingness.
Occasionally, the group was attacked by a few reckless demon beasts, but those were all taken care of by Silvermoon with ease.
A short while later, the group arrived at a nondescript corner of the swamp, and Han Li's eyes abruptly lit up.
From several kilometers away, he could see an ancient altar that was around 1,000 feet tall hovering in mid-air.
"There it is! Hua Shi, you can stay here while we go on ahead," Han Li instructed.
Patriarch Hua Shi naturally had no objections and hurriedly agreed with a respectful bow.
Thus, Han Li's trio headed toward the tall altar, and a short while later, they arrived at their destination.
Han Li paused on the spot as he carefully examined the altar to find that it was rectangular in shape and was comprised of three levels.
Its surface was riddled with unidentifiable ancient characters, but most of it was covered under a layer of green moss.
The four corners of the altar were all damaged to a certain extent, indicating that it was a very old structure.
"This really is an Ancient Compass Altar! According to Bao Hua, all we have to do is use a secret technique at a set time to activate the coordinates recorded on the altar, and we'll be able to find the entrance to the Small Spirit Sky. Guo'er, you were born in the Small Spirit Sky, so your soul naturally contains a hint of that realm's aura. As such, the coordinates can be calculated more accurately if I can borrow a wisp of your spiritual sense," Han Li said.
"No problem, Senior," Zhu Guo'er hurriedly replied, and judging from her joyful expression, it was clear that she was also very much looking forward to being able to return to the Small Spirit Sky.
Silvermoon was also very happy for Zhu Guo'er.
Han Li had already revealed to her that there was a good chance that Nangong Wan was in the Small Spirit Sky, but with Silvermoon's current mental state, she naturally wouldn't become jealous like a normal woman. Instead, she was happy to go with Han Li to search for Nangong Wan in the Small Spirit Sky.
Han Li was confident that Bao Hua wouldn't lie to him about something like this, but it was his first time calculating the coordinates of an entrance to another realm using an ancient altar.
As such, he didn't know if any mishaps could occur or how much deviation he should account for in the results.
Thus, even though he appeared quite calm, he was not as confident as he looked.
If it weren't for the fact that Bao Hua had told him that this type of altar could only be activated at a set time, he wouldn't have waited so long to do this.
A series of thoughts were racing through Han Li's mind as he appraised the altar before him, and he suddenly swept a sleeve through the air, releasing a burst of golden light that swept up both himself and Zhu Guo'er before the two of them vanished in unison.
In the next instant, spatial fluctuations erupted on the highest level of the altar, and the two of them re-emerged there.
Silvermoon remained at the foot of the altar, looking up at Han Li with a hint of concern in her eyes.
Han Li swept his gaze through the surrounding area to find that the altar was completely empty.
However, as he cast his gaze onto the ground below, he immediately discovered that there was a circular compass-like formation on the edge of the altar.
The entire formation was over 100 feet in size and covered virtually the entire top level of the altar. However, some of the runes on the formation were displaying signs of wear and had become very unclear.
Han Li had already been informed that as long as the majority of the formation remained intact, small missing sections wouldn't affect the outcome of the calculations, so he wasn't all that concerned about this.
Thus, he took a deep breath before making a hand seal, then cast an incantation seal into the formation.
The formation flashed erratically several times as it was activated, and balls of light of different colors immediately began to appear in the air above the altar before injecting themselves into the altar.
Han Li continued to flick his fingers through the air, releasing more and more incantation seals, and soon, slight tremors were running through the entire formation.
At the same time, bands of gentle light had begun to take shape nearby before revolving around the altar.
Right at this moment, Han Li let loose a low cry, then suddenly thrust a palm toward the ground down below.
An azure pillar of light erupted out of the center of his palm, then injected itself into the altar through the compass formation.
With this influx of pure magic power, the commotion ringing out from the altar intensified, and after a long while, Han Li had already injected close to a quarter of all of his magic power into the altar, but the suction force being released by the compass formation still showed no signs of relenting.
It was no wonder that so many people were aware of this ancient altar's existence, but no one had taken an interest in it; one had to at least be a Grand Ascension Stage being just to be able to supply the altar with enough magic power for its activation.
Of course, some Body Integration Stage beings could also activate the altar to a certain extent with the assistance of top-grade spirit stones, but it was difficult to say just how much of the altar's functions they would be able to activate.
Furthermore, none of the altar's functions could benefit one in their cultivation, so even Grand Ascension Stage beings weren't interested in trying to activate it.
Just as these thoughts were running through Han Li's mind, the suction force being released by the compass formation down below suddenly ceased.
Countless runes of different colors then erupted out of the formation in a frenzy, gradually forming a massive round disk above the altar.
The same compass design as the one on the formation was present in the disk, but some parts were extremely bright, while other parts were very dim.
An elated look appeared on Han Li's face upon seeing this. He stood up as he removed his hand from the formation, then swept a sleeve through the air to release an antiquated azure mirror.
He then pointed a finger toward the disk up above several times in succession, and several translucent threads erupted out of his fingertip before vanishing into several parts of the disk in a flash.
The runes on the disk that had been slightly dim immediately lit up and began to slowly revolve on their own.
"Now, Guo'er!" Han Li instructed as his eyes narrowed slightly.
"Yes, Senior!" Zhu Guo'er immediately tapped a finger onto her own forehead, releasing a wisp of her spiritual sense, which vanished into the center of the giant disk in a flash.
All of a sudden, the runes that were revolving slowly shuddered before accelerating drastically in their rotation.