Bai Yaoyi’s eyes swept across the sword and waved it with a single hand, producing several foot-long swordlights that chopped at the wall of ice, leaving deep markings behind.
Han Li’s expression stirred when he saw this.
She turned the sword several times in examination and revealed a trace of doubt after finding no markings of significant value. “After so many years, the spiritual nature hadn’t faded away. Its master must’ve spent quite an effort in creating this. From its might, it should’ve belonged to a late-Core Formation cultivator. But that in itself is strange, someone of that level shouldn’t have been able to reach this place.”
“Can I have a look at it?” Han Li asked.
“There is no need to be polite, go ahead.” Bai Yaoyi sweetly smiled and then sent the flying sword over to Han Li with a flick of her finger.
He reached out to the sword and had it fly into his hand. After examining it for a while, he frowned.
“Has Brother Han discovered something?” Bai Yaoyi curiously inquired.
“The sword’s body is refined purely from Blue Essence Crystal. That isn’t a wise decision at all. If it were mixed with other materials, its might would be even greater. However, these refinement methods weren’t widely known tens of thousands of years ago, and the decorative talisman markings on the sword are rather old. While the master of the sword wasn’t an ancient cultivator, they still come from an age long gone.”
“Brother Han’s deep knowledge in tool refinement has truly come as a shock!” Bai Yaoyi exclaimed.
“It isn’t much, I’ve only read through a few sword refinement archives by chance,” He turned to look into the cavern and calmly said, “How about we go inside and see if there is anything to gain?”
“Yes, let’s go!” Bai Yaoyi nodded after only some thought and released a sparkling white umbrella. Then, she walked into the cavern and led the way.
Han Li smiled and pointed to the several flying swords above him, having them transform into a barrier of golden light before he followed after her.
The cavern was pitch black, and only the sounds of wind and a faint whistle from deep within could be heard. The ghost seemed to have discovered the two as the sounds of the whistle grew deafening.
“Since this place isn’t too large, it should be easy to deal with,” Han Li muttered. He raised his hand and summoned a sparkling white moonlight stone.
After he struck it with a spell seal, the stone brightly shined with light and illuminated their surroundings. Because of the blocking Yin winds, the distant areas were dim and unclear.
When they were two hundred meters deeper into the cavern, they spotted another entrance that faintly released a green glow.
Han Li and Bai Yaoyi gave each other a strange glance. All the caverns they had passed until now were exhausted ore mines without a single exception.
While the two grew somewhat more vigilant, they did possess great cultivation and weren’t about the shy away from this.
With the umbrella in front of her, Bai Yaoyi approached the entrance, but after she glanced inside, her complexion turned pale.
Han Li soon appeared at her side and looked in.
There was a hundred-meter-wide cave filled with stalactites, and a faint green glow shining from the walls and the top. There was a ten-meter-tall stone pillar at the very center. Although it was crude and unremarkable, there was a dried corpse that was tightly bound around it in chains.
Its head lifelessly hung with long grey hair cover it, and its abdomen gored with all organs spilled.
Let alone Bai Yaoyi, this grotesque scene had made for a startling sight to Han Li as well.
He pursed his lips and thought to say something when the blue sword in his hand let out unceasing long cries, followed by wild shaking.
With some understanding, he tossed the sword into the air. It shot towards the stone pillar in a blue streak and turned into its original half-foot-long form before revolving around the dried corpse and letting out another cry.
“This husk was the sword’s master? It appeared that their golden core was seized and life forfeit.” Bai Yaoyi let out a long sigh and wore a slightly disturbed expression.
Han Li coldly said, “He hadn’t died a normal death. This person was used as a live sacrifice for a wicked technique!”
“A live sacrifice?” In her alarm, she finally took notice of a forty-meter-wide spell formation in the cave. She hadn’t immediately noticed it due to the dust that had gathered on top of it.
Han Li nodded, “I don’t know which sacrifice formation this is. I’ll have to take a closer look to find out.”
“That’s easy, leave it to me.” Bai Yaoyi smiled and spat out a miniature crystalline fan. In a flash of icy light, the fan expanded to a foot in length and waved itself across the cave.
A yellow wind swept up the dust into the air, obstructing the sight of the entire cavern.
But with that light surrounding their bodies, Han Li and Bai Yaoyi ignored the dust and examined the formation on the ground as if it hadn’t affected them in the slightest.
At that moment over forty meters away behind them, a dark light weakly shined from the ground, followed by the emergence of a black silhouette. It remained motionless in a crouched position.
When the black silhouette noticed that the two hadn’t reacted, a crimson light glinted from its eyes and its body darted forward. Along the way, it tilted its head and screeched, releasing a black streak towards Bai Yaoyi.
The silhouette intended on simultaneously dealing with both of them.
Han Li suddenly flipped his hand and summoned a hand of azure light in midair. It accurately grabbed ahold of the black silhouette and held it in place.
As for the streak heading towards Bai Yaoyi, she gracefully swept her umbrella behind her.
The umbrella released a flash of white light upon contact with the black streak and deflected the attack with ease, leaving an inch-deep hole in the stone wall.
Bai Yaoyi smiled as she looked at the silhouette captured by the hand of light. It had the body of a black-scaled serpent that spanned fifteen meters long, the face of an ape, and two grotesque arms that each held a foot-long bone spike.
Although the monster was firmly grasped, it was violently struggling with all its might and resentfully glared at the two with its crimson eyes.
“A calamity ape? They actually exist in this world?” Bai Yaoyi felt alarmed upon seeing the monster.
Han Li glanced at the ghost and casually said, “I heard this ghost is something that is condensed from human resentment in an area of heavy Yin. It is extremely vicious, fond of killing, and enjoys eating the brains of live humans. In addition, it is able to mimic any ghostly sound. It appeared the refined corpse’s whistle from before was his doing. Tch tch, I’ve looked through quite a few records, but this is the first time I encountered a ghost like this. However, it isn’t particularly strong and is courting death to dare attack us.”
Bai Yaoyi snorted and looked at the Calamity Ape with disgust. “What point is there in keeping this monstrosity alive. It’d be better to kill it.” She then pointed at it, releasing a streak of blue light to coil around the ghost and seal in a layer of ice.
Han Li silently smiled and commanded the hand of light to exert force, crushing the frozen monster into tiny pieces.
By then, the dust swept up into the air had fallen back on the ground, but they had already clearly seen the spell formation.
Han Li narrowed his eyes and calmly walked over to examine it further. As for Bai Yaoyi, she appeared disinterested and instead turned her attention to the cavern walls.
After a long while, Han Li eventually said, “This spell formation is for refining ghosts and is an ancient one at that. Also...”
Bai Yaoyi turned her attention back at the spell formation and puzzlingly asked, “Also what?”
“Also, the year engraved on the spell formation appears far older than the dried corpse. It should’ve placed down since ancient times.” Han Li said with a tone of certainty.
Bai Yaoyi stared at Han Li in astonishment, “So it was like that? How was Brother Han able to determine this?”
Han Li chuckled and said, “This is only something that I concluded from my own experience.”
Bai Yaoyi paused for a moment before letting out a chuckle and dropping the subject.
“The mysteries behind this area have nothing to do with us. Since there are no other things here, let’s leave,” she raised her hand and took the blue flying sword into it before placing it in her storage pouch.
Han Li nodded and the two began to leave. But just as they approached the entrance, Han Li suddenly felt a strange, uneasy sensation. He couldn’t help but stop and turn to look at the chained dried corpse.
“What, is there something amiss?” Bai Yaoyi asked with a trace of confusion.
Han Li didn’t immediately reply. Instead, his gaze flickered and he pointed in the distance.
A muffled sound of thunder rang out and golden light flashed from his fingertips, striking the dried corpse on the stone pillar with an arc of thin lightning.