Chapter 378: I’ll Be Back!
Bai Xiaochun reeled as he thought back to the old Wildlander he had spoken to by means of Chen Manyao. The things that old man had told him clicked into place with what he had learned just now, and suddenly, he understood.
If the four main branches of the Heavenspan River and the sects that grew near them were the feudal governments, then this Celestial… was the emperor!
Bai Xiaochun sat there in silence with Frigidsect for a long moment. Finally, Frigidsect rose to his feet and extended his right hand, within which was a blue-green walnut!
Apparently, the walnut had been crafted from jade, and inside of it was… a sleeping soul.
It didn’t emanate any soul fluctuations at all, and in fact, even examining it with divine sense didn’t reveal the slightest fluctuation. Bai Xiaochun stared at it blankly for a moment.
Frigidsect looked at the walnut, then at Bai Xiaochun, his expression alive with anticipation.
“Xiaochun, your service to the River-Defying Sect has gone above and beyond the call of duty. The fact that you are a member of the River-Defying Sect… is a true blessing. Unfortunately, we are too small and weak now, and are unable to provide you much in the way of help. However, after discussing matters with the Fellow Daoists from the other divisions, we all agreed that it was appropriate to take this… a deva soul… and give it to you!” Frigidsect’s voice echoed like thunder in Bai Xiaochun’s ears, causing his mind and heart to tremble.
“A deva soul!?” Bai Xiaochun’s eyes widened. If he hadn’t just heard Frigidsect’s explanation of the rarity of five elements deva souls, he wouldn’t have thought this item to be of much value. But now, now that he understood everything, his heart was filled with waves of shock.
It wouldn’t be a wild guess to assume that this deva soul was the only one in the entire River-Defying Sect. In fact, there might not even be a second one in all of the eastern cultivation world of the Middle Reaches.
After all… deva souls were items that Middle Reaches sects usually wouldn’t possess. It was only because the Spirit Stream Division had once been the Frigid School that it had one!
“This….” For the first time ever, Bai Xiaochun didn’t reach out to take the treasure being offered him. It was so valuable that he didn’t dare to even touch it.
“We were going to give this to you eventually anyway,” Frigidsect said with a smile. “We’re just handing it over a bit early. Don’t feel any pressure. After all, reaching the Nascent Soul stage by means of a five elements deva soul is something legendary, to say the least. Think of this wood-type deva soul as a direction to follow. If you can’t collect any other deva souls, then perhaps you can find someone in the Starry Sky Dao Polarity Sect who will trade you a five elements heavenbeast soul for it. Either way… we have long since begun to think about how to make your path to the Nascent Soul stage as clear as possible!”
Bai Xiaochun was trembling, and was even having trouble breathing. He looked up at Frigidsect for a long moment, then clasped hands and bowed deeply.
“Many thanks, Patriarch!”
“Very well. I’ve said everything I needed to say, and it’s nearly dawn. I’ll wait for you at the grand hall on Mount River Defiance with the rest of the patriarchs.” Patting Bai Xiaochun on the shoulder encouragingly, he turned to leave. For some reason, he seemed especially old underneath the pale moonlight.
Bai Xiaochun carefully placed the deva soul into his bag of holding. His mind was currently in chaos; not only was he feeling really hesitant about leaving the sect, he was deeply and profoundly moved.
Soon, dawn arrived, and as the first rays of light pierced through the clouds and illuminated the River-Defying Sect, they revealed a scene of lush mountains and flowing rivers. Everything was peaceful and quiet, with pulses of spiritual energy filling the entire area. The River-Defying Sect truly looked like a celestial paradise.
A look of determination could be seen in Bai Xiaochun’s eyes as he straightened his clothing and headed toward the summit of the mountain.
At the same time, Xu Baocai and Master God-Diviner gathered their belongings, mustered their courage, and headed in the same direction.
Big Fatty Zhang was very excited as he flew into the air, and as for Chen Manyao, she shot through the dawn air in a beam of colorful light.
Somewhere in the Blood Stream Division, an immortal’s cave opened, and Song Que walked out. His face was ashen, his fists clenched, his teeth gritted. Unfortunately for him, he had no choice in the matter, so he flew up into the air and headed toward Mount River Defiance.
In addition to them, other cultivators of the River-Defying Sect began to step out of their immortal’s caves. News had spread over the past few days, and many people knew about the matter of the hostages. In fact, if the sect hadn’t specifically forbidden people from visiting Bai Xiaochun to express condolences and bid him farewell, he would have gotten almost no rest.
As of this moment, all of the cultivators in the entire sect had emerged. During the past three days, they had been prohibited from disturbing Bai Xiaochun, but now, they simply had to see him off.
Song Junwan and Hou Xiaomei were in the crowd, both of them looking very sad as they flew toward Mount River Defiance.
When Bai Xiaochun arrived at the grand hall, he saw Frigidsect and the other Nascent Soul cultivators there waiting for him. He also saw that he wasn’t the first disciple to arrive. Gongsun Wan’er had come a bit earlier, and when she caught sight of Bai Xiaochun, she smiled slightly.
Bai Xiaochun had been informed earlier that Gongsun Wan’er was also to be a hostage. For some reason, he’d always found there to be something strange about her, although he wasn’t sure what. When she looked at him, he forced a smile onto his face and walked over to stand next to her. Strangely, she had no Dao Protectors.
Surprised by that, he asked, “Where are your Dao Protectors?”
“I don’t need any,” she replied with a smile.
Bai Xiaochun blinked a few times, and was about to inquire further when Master God-Diviner and Xu Baocai arrived, followed by Big Fatty Zhang and Chen Manyao.
Last of all was the ashen-faced Song Que, who was wearing a very grim expression. Upon arriving, he snorted slightly and then stood next to Master God-Diviner, looking somewhat sulky.
Cultivators were gathering outside of the mountain to say their farewells to Bai Xiaochun.
Bai Xiaochun could see Song Junwan and Hou Xiaomei in the crowd, as well as Hou Yunfei, Third Fatty Hei, and many other familiar faces. None of them could cover up the gloomy expressions on their faces. All of a sudden, Bai Xiaochun realized that his life truly was bitter sometimes… he always seemed to be saying goodbye to people.
It had been like this back when he had left the village, and back when he had left the Spirit Stream Sect. Now here he was in the River-Defying Sect, and it was the same thing….
Just when he was pondering whether or not to make a short speech like he usually did, an intense pressure suddenly exploded out from the grand hall. At the same time, the door to the hall slowly opened.
The boy appeared, clad in a red robe, his hands clasped behind his back. Although he was not very tall, he seemed grander than heaven and earth, which was, of course, because of the heaven-shaking, earth-shattering energy which roiled off of him.
As the pressure of the Deva Realm filled the entire River-Defying Sect with solemn silence, the boy looked at Bai Xiaochun and Gongsun Wan’er, then nodded slightly.
“Since everyone’s here, let’s be off!” He waved his hand up into the sky, causing intense rumbling sounds to echo out, as if the sky itself were being crushed. Then, two illusory hands appeared, ripping a huge hole into the air itself.
Then, a 30,000-meter-tall giant emerged to hover above in the air.
The giant had a powerful fleshly body, and a savage aura. Although it wasn’t quite as impressive as the Blood Ancestor, it was still a completely shocking sight.
As it hovered there, the mountains below almost seemed like toys that it could crush at will.
Gasps could be heard among the River-Defying Sect cultivators, and even Bai Xiaochun’s eyes went wide. That was especially true after the giant threw his head back and howled, then dropped to its knees and prostrated itself in the direction of Mount River Defiance.
“Master!” it said, its voice deafening as it rolled out in all directions.
Even as everyone in the sect was shaken, the boy flicked his sleeve, causing the visions of Bai Xiaochun and everyone around him to blur. Their bodies were suddenly filled with pain, and they vanished. When they reappeared moments later, they realized that they were looking down at Mount River Defiance….
All of them were now… on the head of the giant!
To be able to teleport people without any spell formations whatsoever was something that Nascent Soul cultivators could only do with great difficulty. However, this young boy had done it with the flick of his sleeve, as if it hadn’t taken him any effort at all.
This was the first time that Bai Xiaochun had been shaken in such a way by a deva. Even more shocking was that each hair on the giant’s head was like a huge tree, making his head almost like a forest.
Xu Baocai shrieked, and Big Fatty Zhang’s face drained of blood. Master God-Diviner was left trembling, and even Song Que started panting a bit. Chen Manyao took things in stride a bit better, whereas Gongsun Wan’er was the only one who didn’t seem to have any reaction whatsoever.
As for Bai Xiaochun, he was a true Gold Core cultivator, so although his face paled a bit, he stood there in place, looking down at the River-Defying Sect. Suddenly, he cried out in a loud voice, “I’m leaving… but I’ll be back!”
The Deva Realm boy looked over at Bai Xiaochun with a smile, then sat down cross-legged on one of the giant’s huge hairs. A moment later, the giant rose to its feet, roared, and leaped back into the hole in the air, vanishing in an instant!
The only thing left behind for the River-Defying Sect cultivators to see were some ripples, and the echoes of Bai Xiaochun’s voice.
End of Book 3
Translator: Deathblade. Chinese language consultant: ASI a.k.a. Beerblade. Editor: GNE. Memes: Logan. Tocsin. Transcendent Patrons: Daoist Elder N, BLE, ttre208. . .