With the flood dragon soul absorbed by the spirit hide, Han Li flipped his hand, summoning a sparkling blue talisman brush into his palm. It was seven inches long and was exquisitely created. With his other hand, he beckoned to a blue jade box and summoned a ball of golden liquid from the case.
Han Li quickly dipped the brush in the floating liquid and his expression froze as he concentrated on the spirit hide. He then began to sweep his brush through the air with great familiarity.
Series of cryptic golden talisman characters began to flow from the tip of the brush and directly bore into the spirit hide. Soon after, various talisman characters began to emerge above the spirit hide in orderly lines, each glistening with golden light.
Just as these talisman characters began to appear, the spirit hide began to fiercely shake, emitting dragon roars from within. Protrusions then began to appear on the surface of it. Soon after the crimson flood dragon emerged from the spirit hide and attempted to escape with all its might.
But in that instant, the golden talisman characters on top of it brightly shined and contorted, tightly constricting the flood dragon soul and dragging it back.
Although the flood dragon soul has lost its intelligence, it was still the soul of a worldly spirit beast. Its instincts detected danger and continuously attempted to break free of the golden talisman characters. At that moment, Han Li began to draw talisman characters with increased speed and more golden talisman characters directly enveloped the flood dragon, quickly overpowering it and pushing it back into the spirit hide.
Taking advantage of this opportunity, Han Li took out a bottle of purple liquid and dipped his brush in it. He then calmly began to write an odd symbol.
Following that, Han Li exchanged the cinnabar he used to write with his brush as he continued to write talisman characters. Not long after, the spirit hide talisman paper flashed with dense bursts of various colored light as it soared with spiritual Qi.
Han Li’s expression grew increasingly solemn and his brush strokes started to slow, his eyes shining with blue light as he utilized the Brightsight Spirit Eyes to their greatest extent.
Just after a single crimson talisman character was drawn onto the spirit hide, a wave of increasingly frantic spiritual Qi fluctuations suddenly emerged from the half-finished spirit talisman.
Han Li’s expression greatly changed as he began to inwardly curse. Without a further thought, he swept his sleeve sending out a cloud of azure Qi, instantly recalling all of the materials. At that same moment, he swept his other hand towards himself, summoning a small blue shield. It expanded in the blink of an eye and blocked his front.
As Han Li finished all of this, the crimson spirit hide exploded, releasing deafening dragon roars. Rainbow light dazzlingly shined as a huge wave of astonishing spiritual Qi struck the blue shield.
Glowing with light, the large shield unwaveringly blocked the attack, somewhat to Han Li’s surprise. He reckoned that due to the spirit talisman’s immense power, the explosion that resulted from its failure would contain equivalently destructive force. It had been beyond his expectations for the attack to be so easily blocked.
During Han Li’s bewilderment, a streak of crimson light shot towards the ceiling of the sealed room in an attempt to escape. But just as the red streak touched the ceiling, a layer of white light blocked its way, causing it to rebound.
Han Li was overjoyed at the sight of the flood dragon soul and raised his hand without any further thought. He grabbed at the air, summoning a hand of azure light to emerge above the flood dragon soul and grab it. He then pointed to the shield and had it quickly shrink with blue ripples of light before returning into his sleeve.
Afterwards, Han Li again examined the re-captured flood dragon soul with the Brightsight Spirit Eyes.
“Yi!” Han Li yelped with astonishment. Although it still appeared to have the original soul, its strength was far weaker. The crimson flood dragon soul also appeared listless.
Han Li glanced at the flood dragon soul and stroked his chin with a pensive expression. The failure to refine the Spirit Subjugation Talisman hadn’t resulted in the immediate destruction of the soul; it merely caused it to suffer a slight loss in strength. But in this case, he could make several attempts to create the talisman despite how difficult it may be to refine it. Of course, after each attempt, the soul would grow weaker and the power of the spirit talisman was sure to decrease as well.
After pondering this, Han Li sighed with relief. Even if the soul decreased in power, it may prove easier to refine if the flood dragon soul was weakened. There was some fortune to be had from his failed talisman refinement.
Han Li wryly smiled and began to take out another set of supplementary materials, and exchange the spirit beast hide for a new one.
He then set his mind of refining a new spirit beast hide.
As Han Li painstakingly attempted to refine the Spirit Subjugation Talisman over the span of three days, the entirety of Skyfirst City began to mobilize.
All sects and cultivators knew that there was about to be a great and decisive battle coming in a few days. After a period of disorder, the cultivators in the city began to leave their sect encampments and solemnly brought themselves to the assigned divisions of the cultivator army.
They all knew that if they didn’t win this battle and push back the Moulan, they would invade the Heavenly South. It would bring about the end of countless sects and legacies. As a result, their morale was at their peak without any need to rally them. As for the ten wagered battles, news of that had also quickly spread around.
Out of fear that Moulan spies would leak the identity of the cultivators who would fight in the wagered battles, the names of those fighting were kept confidential. Apart from the eccentrics that participated in the meeting, no one would know of the ten that would fight.
Of course, the identity of these ten Nascent Soul stage cultivators were of greatly discussed amongst many cultivators as well as their potential chances of winning. After all, the survival of about a thousand cultivators depended on them. Those who had fellow sect members among the cultivators were particularly concerned over the matter.
As for the Drifting Cloud Sect disciples, they left Skyfirst City along with the divisions they were assigned to — with the exception of Cultivator Song who was ordered to stay behind and wait for Han Li. As for Lu Luo, he followed after the rest of the Drifting Cloud Sect with lack of a better choice.
Not long after, Skyfirst City was empty apart for a sparse few cultivators standing guard.
As a few more days passed by, Cultivator Song couldn’t help but grow nervous. Han Li had yet to emerge and she could faintly hear dragon cries and explosions coming from his heavily protected residence, much to her worry.
On the fifth day, Cultivator Song decided that if her Martial Uncle Han didn’t emerge from seclusion, she would have to summon the courage to force her way inside. If she waited another day, it was possible that they wouldn’t make it to the battle.
At that moment, Cultivator Song was sitting in the main hall of the sect encampment as worried weighed on her mind. She occasionally looked outside the hall, and faintly saw the glow of the setting sun. Her expression wavered as the sky gradually grew darker. She then stood up and bit her lips with a frown.
But before she could leave the hall, she heard a series of clear bell rings from outside. She soon wore an expression of delight.
A short moment later, Han Li suddenly appeared in a flash of azure light.
“I pay my respects to Martial Uncle Han!” Cultivator Song quickly stepped forward and curtsied.
“How many days has it been? Nearly all the cultivators in the city are gone.” When Han Li emerged from the sealed room, he swept his spiritual sense past the city and discovered that there were only a few cultivators left. While he was in the room, he could only feel a loose passage of time. Although he felt that the scheduled date had yet to arrive, he felt it best to make certain.
Feeling much more at ease, Cultivator Song respectfully replied, “Reporting to Senior, today is the fifth day.”
Han Li decisively said, “The fifth day. We have more than enough time, but it is better to be early. Let’s go.”
“As you command!”
Han Li waved his hand and a streak of white light flew out from his sleeve into the courtyard outside. The light faded away to reveal a winged white carriage, the Wind Riding Chariot.
Han Li’s figure blurred and he reappeared inside. He turned to the woman and said, “Come in. It will be faster to travel in this than flying with light.”
Cultivator Song shot an appraising glance at the carriage and silently entered it with slight surprise on her face. Afterwards, Han Li lightly tapped his foot, causing the Wind Riding Chariot to glow and envelope itself in a layer of white light. Then with a tremble, it shot through the skies.
The Wind Riding Chariot was worthy of being a treasure specialized in flight. Not only did it consume a small amount of magic power, it flew far more quickly than an ordinary cultivator could. In the blink of an eye, they had already left Skyfirst City.
Cultivator Song was very relieved at the sight of this. She also couldn’t help but wonder if this treasure was the reason why her Martial Uncle Han appeared so relaxed. Did this unfathomable martial uncle of hers managed to cultivate some formidable secret in the last few days? Just what were those explosions and dragon roars coming from the room?
Just as this woman pondered in silence and allowed her imagination to run wild, Han Li asked her a question, much to her surprise. “Is Fellow Daoist Violet Spirit still where they previously were?”
After a pause, Cultivator Song obediently replied, “Violet Spirit and Mei Ning had decided to leave Skyfirst City for the time being and decide what to do once the war is over.”
“Hehe! That girl Violet Spirit is rather clever, this was a truly wise decision. If I were in her shoes, I’d be doing the exact same.”
Soon after, he poured more spiritual power into his foot and propelled the Wind Riding Chariot at even greater speeds. Cultivator Song revealed shock as they soon tore through the skies and disappeared past the horizon.