The scholarly man's silhouette disappeared in the blink of an eye, much to the astonishment of everyone nearby.
Wei Wuya paused and said, "Sect Master Wang, is that person truly Master Cang Kun? Since this person only has a little bit of essence remaining, he can't pose much of a threat, regardless of how fearful he may have been in the past. Was he the one who told you about the Spirit Ether Garden?"
Wang Tiansheng's face had relaxed when he heard that the spatial tear was something that had newly appeared. He then turned to Wei Wuya and said, "To start with, we can say that he both is Master Cang Kun and is not Master Cang Kun. And yes, everything we know about the Spirit Ether Garden came from him."
"What do you mean? There is no need to keep it a mystery." Wei Wuya said with an annoyed tone.
Wang Tiansheng indifferently explained, "Brother Wei misunderstands. The portrait soul you witnessed was the scattered soul of one of Master Cang Kun's incarnations. When this incarnation probed into Devilfall Valley, it was destroyed by a restriction. As a result, Master Cang Kun used a soul nurturing technique to refine the soul fragment into a scroll magic tool for recovery. But now that the genuine Master Cang Kun died countless years ago, this soul incarnation has become independent. It isn't strange to say that this soul incarnation has become a different person entirely."
Wei Wuya expressed surprise when he heard this while Wang Tiangu pursed his lips and wryly chuckled. It wasn't clear whether or not he was bitter about not having discovered the secret of the scroll or because of his previously excitement.
Wei Wuya nodded and coldly said, "It seems you've reached an agreement with that soul remnant and he's told you about the Spirit Ether Garden. However, this has nothing to do with me. I only care about entering the garden. Now that I've reached this age, I only care about entering the Deity Transformation stage and ascending to the Spirit Realm."
"Brother Wei is quite a sensible individual. This way is for the best. Alright, since the spatial tear was only an anomaly, let's continue!" The Ghost Spirit Sect Master smiled and pointed to one of the disciples to continue leading the way.
The disciple paled when he saw this, but he continued onward nevertheless, avoiding the spatial tear in the way. Wei Wuya gradually quickened his steps and the other Ghost Spirit Sect disciples followed suit, making their way toward the huge altar in the distance.
Standing inside of a glacial area deeply layered in frost, Han Li raised his head toward the crimson light above him. He then faced Violet Spirit and said, "What's going on? Your flying squirrel has gone mad." Not far behind them, there was a two-hundred-meter wide ravine of ice. Han Li and Violet Spirit had passed through it to enter the valley depths.
Surrounding them now was a land of ice, snow, and the howls of bone-chilling winds. However, Han Li's azure robes remained completely still as if unaffected by the frost.
"I don't know. My flying squirrel was doing fine on the outside, but when it passed through the ravine, it suddenly went mad. Fortunately, I withdrew it quickly before something could happen. Even after it entered the Spirit Beast Pouch, it's still completely frantic." Violet Spirit frowned in complete confusion.
Han Li muttered to himself before suddenly slapping his storage pouch. A small group of Gold Devouring Beetles were released and they buzzed as they gathered in a small cloud above his head before remaining completely still. Then with a mental command, the small group of beetles immediately returned to his storage pouch with complete obedience.
Han Li stroked his chin and his gaze flickered as he slapped another storage pouch to summon a black streak of light. It revolved once above his head and then dropped down a meter in front of Han Li. The light faded away to reveal a small black monkey that was several inches tall, the Weeping Soul Beast.
It yawned and blinked, blankly staring at Han Li as if it had just woken up.
Han Li watched the beast for a long while before summoning a wave of azure light with a sweep of his sleeve. And in another flash of light, the Weeping Soul Beast disappeared from sight.
Han Li pondered to himself for a moment and turned to Violet Spirit. Having come to a decision, he said, "Since you've lost control of your flying squirrel, I have no choice but to rely on myself to track down the Ghost Spirit Sect. Fortunately, we aren't too far away from them now that we've entered the valley depths. I will spread out my spiritual sense and look for any tracks they left behind. Guard me for the time being."
Han Li was relieved that the Gold Devouring Beetles and the Weeping Soul Beast were unaffected by the valley depths. But this might've been expected as they were far from ordinary, being top ranked exotic insects and a fearsome beast variant, respectively.
Of course, Han Li couldn't have known that Marquis Nanlong's Eternal Flight Orioles were also unaffected by the valley, unlike the Moulan's spirit birds and Violet Spirit's flying squirrel. The cause behind this had something to do with a secret that lay hidden in the valley depths.
Violet Spirit bit her lips and helplessly said, "Then all we can do is rely on Brother Han's abilities."
Han Li nodded and promptly sat down cross-legged. With his eyes closed, his body began to brilliantly shine with light as strands of Qi occasionally floated in the air. Violet Spirit waited at the side, her clear eyes staring at Han Li's expressionless face.
To tell the truth, she felt some unclear and unknown emotions towards Han Li. It wasn't entirely accurate to say that they were only good friends and she had felt some delight when Han Li became dumbfounded upon seeing her true appearance.
She definitely couldn't be considered his confidante either. Although she had gone through many trials and tribulations with Han Li until now, he had never truly laid his heart bare to her as if intentionally increasing the distance between them. It seemed he had no intention of taking things any further.
As a matter of fact, with Han Li's current status and cultivation, if he had proposed to marry her she was still unsure whether or not she would accept. She had unintentionally found out from the Drifting Cloud Sect's Cultivator Song that Han Li already had a Dao Companion by the name of Nangong Wan, much to her disappointment. It felt as if something of hers had been snatched away.
Violet Spirit's mind remained in a daze as she stared at Han Li's face, her imagination running rampant.
Of course, Han Li was completely ignorant of all of this. He had already released his spiritual sense to sweep through a fifty kilometer radius and see if there were any Ghost Spirit Sect cultivators around. But as a result, his search ended in vain.
Han Li frowned but he wasn't discouraged. He then spread out his spiritual sense to scan over a hundred kilometers away, but was still unable to discover the aura of any other cultivators.
After some consideration, Han Li tossed a spirit beast pouch into the air and he formed an incantation gesture with his hands, releasing over a thousand Gold Devouring Beetles into the air.
"Go!" Han Li widely opened his eyes and waved his hand, striking at the beetles with an azure spell seal. The beetle swarm loudly buzzed before scattering and flying off in every direction.
Han Li then closed his eyes once more and the light surrounding his body became even more brilliant. When Violet Spirit saw this, she wore an expression of alarm. She didn't know what Han Li had just done.
At that moment, Han Li had already reached the pinnacle of the Great Development Technique. He had forcefully divided his spiritual sense into over a thousand different strands and sent almost all of them to attach themselves to each Gold Devouring Beetle, leaving behind only a few strands on his body to protect himself.
His strands of spiritual sense were able to see through the eyes of the Gold Devouring Beetle that they possessed, but they weren't able to sense a cultivator's aura. The beetles had begun to spread out and look for traces of cultivators that might appear.
Of course, there were beetles that came across a spatial tear or became trapped in a restriction, but this didn't pose much of a threat to something that lacked physical form such as a strand of spiritual sense. Whenever a Gold Devouring Beetle met a mishap, the attached spiritual sense strand would abandon its host and return to Han Li's body, but there still were times where these strands were either destroyed or trapped.
When this occurred, Han Li decisively severed his connection to those strands and turned his attention elsewhere. But for each strand of spiritual sense he lost, he couldn't help but grow pale. Fortunately, his spiritual sense was beyond powerful and he was able to withstand these losses without much harm and recover quickly.
With these thousand Gold Devouring Beetles swarming the sky, Han Li eventually found a clue leading to the route that the Ghost Spirit Sect took moving forward. He immediately commanded all of his Gold Devouring Beetles to return. Once the last Gold Devouring Beetles returned to their pouch, Han Li opened his eyes with a cold smile.
"We're going! I found their trail." With that said, Han Li stood up and flew through the sky in an azure streak of light. When Violet Spirit saw this, she rejoiced and closely followed after him.
Shortly after, Han Li and Violet Spirit appeared above an expanse of scattered stone. Han Li stared at the newly appeared hold with a strange expression.
Han Li calmly said, "It seems this is one of the places with a sign placed here. If I remember correctly, there should be two marked locations that lead to the Spirit Kindle Fruit. This is a prime opportunity to track them down." Then with a fling of his sleeve, a ball of white light flew from his sleeve and landed ten meters away from them to reveal the Wind Riding Chariot.
With a firm tone, Han Li ordered, " We'll quickly chase after them! You fly far too slowly so climb into the chariot. We'll only be able to catch up to them if we fly several times faster than we do now."
"Several times faster? There are too many spatial tears in the valley. Isn't it too dangerous?" Violet Spirit's expression changed in alarm.