Chapter 593: Stormwind Mountain
Stormwind Mountain was a huge mountain located in the northeast edge of the umbra realm. One could only spot the bottom half of the mountain from the distance as the rest of it was densely covered in Yin clouds.
The mountain was made up of bare black stone and lacked any kind of vegetation. Additionally, it was over four kilometers high with storms of fierce Yin winds blowing around it. If common men were to climb it, they would only add to the many black ice sculptures already on the mountain.
The treacherous conditions of the mountain had also caused its surroundings to become particularly gloomy. With endless thunder ringing from the skies and cold howling winds on land scattering stone and sand, it seemed as if the area was truly haunted.
Since places with dense umbra Qi were beloved to powerful umbra beasts, it was only natural for many fearsome demon beasts to seize the nearby land. But today, there were some uninvited visitors that were paying a visit to Stormwind Mountain.
A beast carcass that was over a hundred meters tall had fallen onto the ground in a flash of silver light. The carcass then had shriveled an instance upon contact with the light and the silver light flew into the distance carrying an expanse of black Qi.
A moment later, a huge world-shaking roar filled the air.
Following a series of heavy thuds on the ground, a thirty-meter-tall silver ape had appeared at the side of the umbra beast carcass. The huge ape's appearance was malevolent and vicious with each of its movements exuding an astonishing pressure. However, a man and a woman were sitting on its back, Han Li and Mei Ning.
Han Li swept his gaze at the beast carcass and pushed his hand against the ape before deftly landing on the carcass's skull. In the instant he landed, a cold glint flickered from his eyes and the carcass's skull split open, revealing nothing at all.
Han Li revealed a trace of disappointment, but soon his face turned back to normal.
As of current, he had accumulated over a hundred umbra beast gems. Although he knew there was a small chance that the groups of low grade umbra beasts could result in an umbra beat gem, he didn't have the time to hunt every single one of them down. He had to climb Stormwind Mountain before the next spacial tear appeared.
Mei Ning had also jumped down from the huge ape's shoulder. A second later, the huge ape flashed in silver light and shunk to a delicate foot tall form.
Han Li turned around to look at the Weeping Soul Beast's transformation and he couldn't help but smile.
When he had left Red Soil Village, he had brought the Weeping Soul Beast to many various places to exterminate powerful umbra beasts. After absorbing large quantities of umbra beast soul essence, the weeping soul beast suddenly gained the ability to transform into a huge ape, and not long after, its fur soon turned into an eye-catching silver.
These changes had come to a great surprise to Han Li. According to the slip that Yuan Yao had given him, the Weeping Soul Beast shouldn't have the ability to enlarge itself, and its fur should've turned pitch-black upon advancing instead of silver.
It appears that this peculiar evolution was a result of two aspects that had coincidentally met: umbra beast soul essence that greatly differed from soul essence commonly found on the outside, and the fact that the beast wasn't completely refined in the first place.
It wasn't as miraculous as the commonly known variant spirit beasts, but its peculiar transformation was absolutely the first of its kind.
Although he didn't know whether or not this transformation resulted in strength greater than true Weeping Soul Beasts, Han Li was quite content in seeing these changes continue. After all, the refinement method of a true Weeping Soul Beast was a blood affair. Although Han Li wasn't a soft person, he would've found it difficult to refine it according to the methods that were given.
At that moment, the Weeping Soul Beast had shot into Han Li's sleeve with a flash with white silver light and deep breaths of sleep could be heard.
Han Li faintly smiled in response, but soon his face grew solemn when he gazed at Stormwind Mountain in the distance.
That previous umbra beast had been the last remaining giant umbra beast nearby Stormwind Mountain. They were now free to climb the mountain without their obstruction.
Han Li took a deep glance at the distant mountain and slowly said, "Let's go! We have to climb to the top of the mountain before the next spacial tear appears. Otherwise, we'll be stuck here several months more."
Mei Ning agreed, "Of course! According to the native's method of predicting these intermittent spacial tears, the next tear should appear in about two weeks. If we were to miss it, we'd have to wait another half year."
Han Li faintly smiled and took the lead towards the huge mountain.
A quarter hour later, the two stood at the base of Stormwind Mountain.
Although they didn't feel anything from a distance, they were awed as they stood before the mountain. There were no neighboring mountains, only several kilometers of a single, steep mountain.
Han Li didn't immediately start off on his climb. He turned to Mei Ning and first discussed the method that would be best to climb the gargantuan mountain. Not long after, the two became two black dots that slowly disappeared from sight as they gradually made their way up.
The first four kilometers weren't particularly difficult or strenuous for Han Li or Mei Ning, and they made their way up without much effort. But past that height, bone-chilling Yin winds began to blow at faster speeds and with greater force.
At that point, Han Li and Mei Ning had each covered themselves in several articles of fire-attribute beast hide clothing, but even with this, their faces paled as the cold whipped their skin. Were they ordinary mortals, they would've long met their end by being frozen over.
After persisting for another hundred meters through the Yin wind, Han Li stopped with a frown and solemnly pondered for a moment before taking out a fist-sized white gem from his robes. The gem released a faint white luster that enveloped the two.
Bafflingly, the piercing Yin winds were greatly weakened upon touching the white light, and were no longer strong enough to do them harm. As a result, the two were able to difficultly continue their ascent, relying on their beast hide clothes to resist the iciness of the air.
Eventually, the ground became covered in frost and their footing became slippery, forcing the two to slow their steps and walk with caution. Additionally, their breathes became visible and it became incredibly difficult for them to breath. Mei Ning in particular was gasping for air with a completely flushed face.
After an unknown amount of time having passed as they continued on their trek, they found themselves before a precipitous expanse of glistening black ice. If one wasn't careful as they climbed, they would find themselves falling off the mountain.
On their way, Han Li and Mei Ning had already put on rough scale gloves out of necessity. Even with the gloves, the trek to that point had been incredibly difficult; the two would often lose their grip on the black frost.
Han Li raised his head to look at the top of the glistening cliff and sighed. He then turned his head to the pale-faced woman to his side and said, "Let's take a moment rest beneath that cliff over there. We'll continue onward after we recover our strength.
Although she hadn't said anything, Han Li could tell from a glance that her strength was nearly exhausted. It would quite dangerous if she continued as she were.
When Mei Ning heard this, she let out a long breath and nodded with a forced smile.
The huge cliff that Han Li spoke of was actually an inwardly slanted stone cliff. The appearance of such good shelter was quite timely. The two hastily made way towards it.
Fog and howling winds blew on the outside as Han Li and Mei Ning walked beneath the cliff. With a cautious expression, Han Li then took out a thumb sized bead that he wore on his wrist and had it emit a faint azure light. Just as the fog approached them, the azure light forcibly repelled the fog. However, the fog still lingered nearby as if it were waiting for an opportunity to draw closer.
Mei Ning glanced at the fog and said, "It seems that if it weren't for Brother Han's Matron Screen Pearl, we would've been unable to make it past the Yin wind's strange fog!"
Han Li smiled and thought to say something when he suddenly stopped in place and began to concentrate his attention on his hearing.
When Mei Ning saw this, she was somewhat shocked and discreetly kept quiet.
Han Li indifferently said, "Be careful. Someone is approaching us from the fog." Then with a glint of azure light, an azure dagger appeared in his hand. He then stared into the fog in silence.
With complete confidence in Han Li's words, she immediately took a few steps back and glanced outward with a nervous expression.