Chapter 481: Return
"Pah!" Man Huzi loudly shouted, spitting out a beam of blood-red light towards the Bloodjade Spider. With a puff, the beam of light burst on contact, enveloping the spider in a large blood-red mist in an instant. The Bloodjade Spider hissed and became frantic as if it had been provoked.
When Han Li saw this, his heart flared with anger.
Upon hearing its name, Han Li was certain that the "Berserking Technique" was a secret Devil Dao cultivator technique that carried repercussions. These old devils had used the technique without even telling him or showing any consideration towards the aftereffects the Bloodjade Spider would suffer. It seemed they simply didn't view a Core Formation cultivator to be worth considering! Although Han Li had already anticipated this, he couldn't help but grimace when he was actually treated this way.
At the moment, the Bloodjade Spider had nearly absorbed the entirety of the blood-red mist. The spider's original sparkling, translucent body had turned completely blood-red as if it were cut from a single piece of scarlet gemstone.
"This is…" Upon seeing this transformation, he immediately recalled the violet appearance of the Bloodjade Spider in the underground cave in the Heavenly South Region. It had the same color and intensity as the furious Bloodjade Spider he had seen back then.
When he worriedly scanned its mind, he sensed a crazed violence from it as if it had lost its intelligence.
Just as Han Li attempted to forcefully placate it in his fright, Man Huzi suddenly roared from his side, "What are you spacing out for? Quickly have your Bloodjade Spider start pulling. The duration of the Berserking Technique is limited." He was fiercely glaring at Han Li.
Stifling his anger, Han Li had no choice but to command the Bloodjade Spider to resume pulling.
Fortunately, the Bloodjade Spider still obediently listened to his orders despite entering a berserk state. A blood-red light flickered from its green eyes as its pointed legs frantically scratched the ground before managing to gradually pull up its taut spider thread.
A series of even more intense trembles rocked the ground, soon followed by thunderous clangs ringing out from the hole.
Man Huzi and the others were delighted by these developments.
Blinding blue light suddenly bursted from the hole and reached over thirty meters above the altar.
Han Li felt his body grow cold for an instant before he grew warm once more. A barrier of brilliant azure light had protected him. Han Li was stunned for a moment before he realized that Qing Yi had enlarged his light barrier by several times and was covering him under its protection.
The old man said with a solemn expression, "Be careful! A far harsher current of cold erupts in the instant that the Heavenvoid Cauldron is raised. It is unknown just how many treasure seeking cultivators have pitifully succumbed to the unexpected occurrence."
After saying this to Han Li, Qing Yi's gaze rigidly focused on the hole once more. He appeared nervous.
When Han Li heard this, his heart was shaken. Just how many had previously attempted to move the cauldron? How was it that they all failed?
Although his heart held doubts, Han Li knew that now was not the time to ask these questions. He could only recollect himself and look at how things were developing at the center of the altar.
It was obvious by now that the Heavenvoid Cauldron was extremely heavy. The full strength of these spirit beasts could only move it a sliver at a time. But even so, the blue light at the center of the altar grew brighter by the second.
Let alone Zenith Yin and the others, even Wu Chou and the Bone Sage down below were staring at the scene without blinking. But while Wu Chou had his hands tightened and wore an expression of excitement and greed, the Bone Sage's eyes revealed a complicated expression containing both anticipation and hesitation.
There was only silence at the altar apart from the sound produced by the slow and gradual rise of the Heavenvoid Cauldron. Everyone was raptly gazing at the hole with held breath.
Han Li was the exception. He was worriedly staring at his Bloodjade Spider. In the end, he wouldn't have any claim to the Heavenvoid Cauldon. What mattered more was the Bloodjade Spider he had painstakingly raised.
He had made a startling discovery. The original milky-white color of the spider thread was now enveloped in a layer of faint blue radiance. Although this change was so faint it could be dismissed as a trick of the eyes, it was undoubtedly a change of its original color.
Just as Han Li was mulling over this change, he heard a sudden buzz from behind him. Despite being rather soft, it was particularly noticeable among the silence on the platform.
Han Li was initially shocked before he turned his head over with concealed delight.
It was the sound of the barrier being torn open at the entrance of the stone steps. Zenith Yin and the others had also clearly heard this sound.
With an unsightly expression, Man Huzi let out a rain of curses before patting the Beast storage pouch at his waist. A streak of yellow light shot out, revealing a yellow spotted panther.
Not only was its body several times larger than an ordinary panther, but there was also a third eye emerging from the top of its head. A flickering yellow glow could be faintly seen from its third eye.
A cold glint flickered from Qing Yi's eyes. He icily said, "Wan Tianming and the others have arrived. My Azure Thorn Bird and Fellow Daoist Wu's two demon corpses have already perished. They obviously aren't willing to allow us to seize the treasure and are coming back to attack us."
"We must delay them for as long as possible. The Heavenvoid Cauldron is already over halfway out. However, the attractive force on the cauldron will only grow heavier the closer it comes to the surface. It isn't something that can be pulled out in a short amount of time." Zenith Yin's face was icy, but he displayed no sign of panic. It seemed the return of the Righteous Dao cultivators was something he had long since anticipated.
"It is as Brother Wu says!" Qing Yi knew they were on the verge of a great battle and swiftly responded. With a flutter of his sleeves, a large flock of azure spheres rushed out. They were over a hundred Azure Thorn Birds.
Although these birds were only fist-sized, they had feathers and beaks of razor-sharp steel. They all silently floated above the old man, making for an impressive display.
As for Zenith Yin, he had his hands clutched in an incantation gesture. A pitch-black mist began to slowly exude from his body. As this devilish mist drifted through the air, fifteen dark-green armored demon corpses appeared around him.
Man Huzi cooly glanced at the two other Core Formation cultivators in silence. Wu Chou hastily took a few steps towards the altar with a restless expression. As for the Bone Sage, his eyes swiveled several times, but he stood completely still. It was unknown what he intended.
Seeing that the Bone Sage hadn't moved, Han Li frowned for a moment before immediately relaxing his face. Several streaks of light had arrived before them at an amazing speed, appearing in front of the altar in only a fraction of a second.
The light disappeared to reveal the group of three Righteous Dao cultivators.
After Wan Tianming swept his gaze past the Bloodjade spider that was pulling up the Heavenvoid Cauldron along with the blue light wildly bursting out of the hole, he calmly said, "Good, very good!" The Devil Dao cultivators looked at each other, not knowing what he had meant by his words.
Man Huzi glared at him and retorted, "Good? I am obviously feeling quite good. But I'd feel even better if you hadn't come."
Wan Tianming indifferently said, "I also didn't want to come, but who would've thought that shortly after I left, this young fellow would take out a long extinct Bloodjade Spider. As such, how could I possibly just walk away?" After he said this, he moved his lips, releasing an odd low-pitched whistle.
Man Huzi and the others were startled. As they pondered what sinister plot their opponent was up to, Wan Tianming stood in place when there was a sudden flash of white light. Like a bolt of lightning, a blue mouse-like creature scuttled into his hand with amazing speed.
At that moment, the Sect Master of the Myriad Gates of Enlightenment silently glanced at the Devil Dao cultivators with a sneer.
"A Stoneshift Beast!" Upon seeing the beast, Qing Yi couldn't help but shout out its name.
"Hehe! Had I not left this creature behind to monitor you, how could I have known the right time to come back? This Stoneshift Beast has no particularly remarkable abilities aside from it's stealthy stone transformation. Even with your profound abilities, you couldn't have possibly detected this creature. Its seems I was correct to leave this contingency measure behind."
Wan Tianming gently caressed the Stoneshift Beast in his hand and glanced at the Bloodjade Spider a moment more. He leisurely said, "Now, I will give you two choices. One is that I will kill the Bloodjade Spider and have the Heavenvoid Cauldron remain buried. The other is for our two sides to evenly split the treasure. This sect master can't possibly allow you Devil Dao cultivators to monopolize the cauldron's treasures."
It seemed that Wan Tianming had made plans in advance and didn't fear their refusal.