Chapter 512: Blackrock City
Yi Jing, the embroidered-robed man, swept his gaze around the room before looking at the Star Palace cultivator sitting in the corner. "It is somewhat inconvenient to speak here. Fellow Daoist Xu, how about we chat outside?"
"Outside? Sure." Xu Yun indifferently replied.
Yi Jing rejoiced, but he soon thought of something and turned his head around and widely smiled towards Han Li. "Brother Crooked Soul, wouldn't it be better to come along with us and listen? Better yet, we can work together!"
Han Li blankly stared for a moment before smiling, "Alright, I did want to hear his explanation as well." Han Li then casually followed after them.
"What? That Fellow Daoist isn't part of your group?" Xu Yun was quite surprised.
The dark-skinned, middle-aged man suddenly shouted out with a trace of hostility, "He did teleport along with us, but before that, we were strangers!"
Yi Jing frowned in response but didn't say anything. Xu Yun wordlessly nodded.
After they all walked out of the stone room, the newcomers surveyed their surroundings with amazement. The scene was entirely different from what Han Li had seen on Deep Jade Island.
They emerged within a small market city. Although it appeared crude and only spanned about ten kilometers, the city was created entirely out of black stone. The shabby building that housed the transportation formation lay at the center of the city. It was propped up by a tall altar-like platform with steps descending from every side. Due to the height of the surrounding terrain, they were able to have a clear view of the surrounding city.
The city seemed to be surrounded by twelve meter tall stone walls along with a dense white sparkling barrier. However, there were tall buildings of varying sizes behind the walls. Strangely enough, none of them had pointed roofs; they were all flat.
At first glance, although the city was full of buildings, few of them were independently constructed. It wasn't just a string of stone buildings joined together, but rather, frequent masses of stone buildings were lined up together.
What shocked Han Li the most was that a few mortals were mingling amongst the cultivators on the crude black stone road, occasionally rushing in and out of the stone buildings.
But this wasn't enough to shock Han Li by itself; it was the fact that a majority of the mortals were young, beautiful women. As for the other mortals, they were burly men and delicate youths.
When Yi Jing's party saw this, they were just as shocked as Han Li.
Since they wanted to travel to the Outer Star Seas, it was only natural to do research on the islands in advance. However, this scene was completely contrary to the information they had acquired.
A strange expression momentarily appeared on the Yi Jing's face. He then said with a deep voice, "Fellow Daoist Liu, take another look at the jade slip containing information on Wondrous Depths Island. Could it be that we were mistaken?"
"I… I'll take another look at it!" The woman surnamed Liu hastily looked through her storage pouch.
Xu Yun waved his arm and stopped the woman from finding the jade slip. "There is no need to look for the information on Wondrous Depths Island. Since most of it is false, it is natural to feel surprised."
Yi Jing's expression changed, "False? What is that supposed to mean?"
"It is quite simple. Wondrous Depths Island is quite different from other demon beast islands. All cultivators are given a gag order prior to their return, allowing them to only leak certain information; else, they would suffer great punishment. It's hard to say whether or not it will prove fortunate that you've arrived at this island."
"Certain information? Could it be due to the Star Palace?" Lady Liu appeared disturbed.
Xu Yun sighed and said, "It isn't the Star Palace, but the various united powers that reign over this island. Even the Star Palace is unwilling to lightly offend this faction."
When those words were said Han Li raised his eyebrows while the others looked at each other in dismay.
Xu Yun chuckled and spoke with a loud, alluring tone, "Hehe! This place isn't too different from what you've imagined. In fact, to some cultivators, it is a place they could only dream of. Blackrock City has the sole market and is the only city on Wondrous Depths Island. So long as you have spirit stones or demon cores, it is a cultivator's paradise. You can purchase items that cannot be acquired from other demon beast islands. Regardless of whether it's top grade cultivation vessels, formidable magic treasures, priceless spirit beasts, or exceedingly rare materials, this place has it all." The nearby cultivators and mortals glanced over due to his loud voice, but they soon averted their eyes and went on their way.
When Yi Jing heard this, he became especially bewildered. As for Han Li, he continued to look around with a calm expression as if he hadn't heard what Xu Yun had said.
When Xu Yun saw this, he glanced at Han Li with slight surprise.
Yi Jing let out a long sigh and asked with a heavy voice, "Could Brother Xu give us an introduction of this place?"
Xu Yun seemed to have completely recovered from his low spirits and candidly said, "Of course I can. Since I can't leave for the time being, how about I give you an explanation of the city while we stroll around? It should prove more useful than giving an empty explanation while standing in place. However, if anyone has any windfalls in the future, please don't forget about me."
"Then I must thank you Brother Xu. This city appears quite different from others." Yi Jing then looked at a male cultivator with a trace of amazement. The cultivator was holding a mortal woman in his embrace in a bold display as they walked down the street, much to the disinterest of the other mortals and cultivators around them.
Xu Yun smiled when he saw this and didn't say anything further. Instead, he brought them over to a large stone building.
The building had already caught Han Li's attention as it was one of the largest in the city.
At a distance, he saw that two charming mortal women were standing at its entrance. As the many cultivators entered the building, they gave them a welcoming smile.
Along the way Xu Yun warned them with a solemn expression, "Bear this in mind! Although this isn't Heavenly Star City, all magic battles are strictly forbidden apart from particular arenas. If this rule is violated, it will be punished by death without question."
The dark-skinned, middle-aged man spoke with shock, "What? This punishment is even more severe than Heavenly Star City's!"
Xu Yin slowly explained, "True, it is far more severe. But like this, cultivators who enter the city may truly be at ease without having to worry. To the best of my knowledge, no one has ever managed to carry out their revenge and successfully leave the city alive. After all, there is a Nascent Soul Senior standing guard at all times."
"A Nascent Soul cultivator!" Yi Jing's party all wore expressions of shock.
Han Li's heart trembled violently and he became completely vigilant.
"Alright! Let's hold off on any more questions until after we go inside." Underneath the smiles of the two beautiful mortal women, the party apprehensively followed Xu Yun into the building.
As for Han Li, a strange glint flickered from his eyes before he curiously followed them in.
After walking through the large entrance, a huge circular screen blocked their way. The screen was pink and had an image of a palace maid flying through the skies. Although the image of the woman was shown from behind, it appeared to be fluctuating as if she were truly in flight. From the faint pink light that the screen emitted, it couldn't possibly be a low grade magic tool.
To the sides of the screen, there were two semi-circle doors. And to the front of the screen, there was a female cultivator who wore azure palace robes and appeared to be thirty-years old. She was happily chatting with a smiling male cultivator.
But strangely enough, despite her ordinary looks, each and everyone one of her movements were filled with a mature feminine charm. Additionally, the smile she wore as she spoke displayed a faintly seductive attraction.
Although she was a mid Foundation Establishment cultivator like the man she was speaking to, the man was completely enraptured by her.
However, when the woman caught sight of Xu Yun and the others, her eyes suddenly brightened and she clapped her hands, causing a young mortal girl to come out from behind a door. As the male cultivator was dragged behind the screen, he gazed at the female cultivator with a reluctant expression.