As Bai Xiaochun’s water clone stood there listening to Madam Cai and her son talking, his eyes began to shine brightly.
Already, he had learned quite a bit about the situation. Bai Qi clearly was a chosen member of the Bai Clan, with extraordinary necromantic talents. Although he wasn’t at the terrestrial rank yet, he was obviously on the verge of mastering eleven-colored flame.
Considering that Bai Qi was trying to win the approval of the clan’s patriarch, then based on what Bai Xiaochun had learned earlier, it seemed obvious that the clan was grooming him to participate in the competition to become the successor of the hell-emperor.
Obviously, with his necromantic talents and a Nascent Soul cultivation base, he would have a good chance at succeeding.
Of course, all of that was assuming that he could reach the Nascent Soul stage. The Bai Clan was huge, with numerous bloodlines all competing against each other. Therefore, it wasn’t possible for the clan to simply give the five elements deva beast souls to Bai Qi outright. Therefore, Madam Cai and Bai Qi were attempting to arrange for the so-called ancestral land trial by fire as the vehicle to achieve their aim.
A deva soul would be up for grabs in that trial by fire, and whoever got it could exchange it for a full set of deva beast souls. If they could secretly arrange for Bai Qi to be the one to get the deva soul, and no unforeseen circumstances arose, then the other bloodlines in the clan wouldn’t be able to do anything about it.
All of that, though, was contingent on the clan’s deva patriarch approving of the plan.
Based on what Bai Xiaochun’s clone could sense in Madam Cai’s tone of voice, she was thoroughly convinced that she could convince the deva patriarch to agree....
“So, they’re going to open the ancestral land just for Bai Qi....” he thought, his heart pounding at the significance of this opportunity. “For most people, getting a deva soul is just a formality on the way to getting a set of five elements deva beast souls. But I’m different... I can directly absorb them!” He grinned, his eyes sparkling.
It was in that very moment that, inside the mansion, Madam Cai’s face fell. Reaching down, she pulled a jade slip out of her bag of holding, a life slip which was currently crumbling to pieces.
“Xu Hai is dead!!”
Bai Qi’s eyes went wide as he looked over at the crumbling jade slip. Xu Hai had been sent to kill Bai Hao, and although his cultivation base wasn’t as powerful as Bai Qi’s, he was still in Core Formation. For a Core Formation cultivator to perish in a fight with a Foundation Establishment cultivator was extremely unusual.
“How is that even possible?” Madam Cai said, clearly alarmed. “That bitch’s son is only in Foundation Establishment. Don’t tell me... that your father....”
“Calm down, mother. There’s no way that Xu Hai was killed by Bai Hao, and there’s also no way that father was there. If I'm not mistaken, the bitch’s son must have come across some good fortune, and got something or someone to help him! Xu Hai must have been killed by whoever Bai Hao has helping him!” Bai Qi’s eyes began to shine with cold light.
“Whoever it is that has dared to interfere with Bai Clan matters has overstepped their bounds, no matter who they are!”
Bai Xiaochun’s water clone stood outside the mansion, rubbing his nose. He could sense what was happening with the fire clone, who had never expected Xu Hai to be so unable to deal with pain. In almost the same moment that the soulsearch finished, he expired.
In response to Bai Qi's words, Madam Cai fought to get herself under control. She wasn’t worried about Bai Hao having help from outside the clan. No, she feared interference on the part of her husband. However, after considering the matter closely, she decided that it was extremely unlikely that her husband had played a part in what had just happened.
“Well, it doesn’t matter exactly what happened,” she said. “Bai Hao can’t be left alive. Long delays usually lead to trouble....”
Bai Qi smiled coldly. “Don't worry, mother. Worst case scenario, we can just wait until the patriarch opens the ancestral land. If I have to, I’ll personally kill him there. Even if he does have someone helping him, I refuse to believe that they would follow him into the ancestral land!”
Seeing how confident Bai Qi was, Madam Cai finally sighed and nodded. “Fine. I’ll go talk with your father and persuade him to convince the patriarch to open the ancestral land within the next few months!”
Outside the mansion, Bai Xiaochun’s clone smiled coldly. At the same time, his opinion of this mother and son team grew even lower.
“Opening the ancestral land, huh? Well, that works just fine. I’ll just handle everything in one fell swoop!” Having made his decision, he turned and vanished into the night.
Back in his hut in the north district, Bai Xiaochun waited for his two clones to return before opening his eyes.
“Making a scene in the clan got me a lot of information, and some good news. Ancestral land, huh...?” The thought of getting his hands on a fourth deva soul caused Bai Xiaochun’s heart to pound with excitement.
“I can get Bai Hao’s notes and the deva soul all in that ancestral land!” Suddenly, he frowned.
“However, I need to go in fully prepared. If I make a move inside the ancestral land, it will likely cause a commotion in the entire clan. I have to make sure I can stay safe....” With that, he walked out of his hut and looked up into the sky to observe the Bai Clan’s defensive spell formation.
After a moment of silence, Bai Xiaochun took a few steps forward, and then suddenly vanished. When he reappeared, he was completely outside of the clan.
It still hurt to use his Undying Hex in this way, but not as badly as before. Turning around, he took another step, vanished, and reappeared in the north district.
“So, my Undying Hex can pierce through this spell formation!
“However, I can’t rely only on that.... I need to attack the problem from two different angles to be completely safe.” For the following several days, he surreptitiously studied the Bai Clan’s spell formation, performing various experiments to try to figure out another way to deal with it.
Unfortunately, he wasn’t very adept at working with spell formations. Besides, this was the Wildlands, and most of the methods he knew about for breaking spell formations required items or methods powered by the spiritual energy in Heavenspan River water. Obviously, those methods wouldn’t work out here in the Wildlands.
“I guess I need to use Wildlands methods.... I should probably ask Zhou Yixing about this.” He immediately sent a message to Zhou Yixing and asked for him to come up with some ways to destabilize the spell formation.
Zhou Yixing and Li Feng had both taken up residence in Giant Ghost City itself. Of course, since they didn’t get along, they lived separately. As soon as Zhou Yixing got a message from Bai Xiaochun, he was very excited, at least, until he checked the actual content of the message, whereupon he was stunned.
After a moment of hesitation, he sent a reply. I can’t do that.... A clan like the Bai Clan is definitely going to have an incredible defensive spell formation. How am I supposed to do anything to that kind of formation...?
Recently, he had run into Li Feng on a few occasions, and noticed the pleased expression on his face. That had immediately led Zhou Yixing to the conclusion that Li Feng had accomplished some task for Bai Xiaochun. As he thought about that fact, Zhou Yixing’s anxiety mounted, and he gritted his teeth.
When Bai Xiaochun saw Zhou Yixing’s reply, he frowned, and was just about to send a message to Li Feng when, all of a sudden, another message came in from Zhou Yixing.
Grandmaster Bai, I thought of a way. It will be very expensive, but it will definitely work. All you have to do is use murdersoul spikes. You would need a lot of them, probably at least a hundred. However, you could insert them into the spell formation from inside the clan, and then, if you detonated them all at the right time, it would definitely crack the thing open. However, it would only buy you a few breaths worth of time before the damage repaired itself....
Also, murdersoul spikes are very expensive. I... I can’t really afford to purchase them on my own.... After explaining everything he knew, Zhou Yixing couldn’t help but think that the method he had come up with was just too expensive.
Back in the Bai Clan, though, Bai Xiaochun’s eyes were shining brightly. As far as he was concerned, money wasn’t a big problem. As long as it bought him a greater chance of escaping, then it would be worth it. He immediately sent a message back to Zhou Yixing, setting a time and place for him to meet one of his clones. Before long, that very clone left the clan, bag of holding in hand.
Soon, Zhou Yixing and Bai Xiaochun’s clone met up. Before Zhou Yixing could even say anything, the clone slapped his bag of holding and produced a pill furnace.
It wasn’t a very large pill furnace, but neither was it small. When it thumped down onto the ground in front of Zhou Yixing, his jaw dropped.
Swishing his sleeve grandly, Bai Xiaochun’s clone said, “Take that and go buy the murdersoul spikes!”
Zhou Yixing hesitated for a moment, then took a step forward and opened the lid of the pill furnace. When he confirmed that it was full to the brim with Heavenspan River water, his eyes nearly fell out of his skull.
“This... this....” The spiritual energy he felt in the Heavenspan River water left him shaking, and his mind reeling. Never in his entire life had he seen so much Heavenspan River water, and he instantly realized that if he sold it, the profit would be difficult to put into words.
“Enough? Or not?” Bai Xiaochun’s clone said proudly. After all, this wasn’t even half of the water he had in his big bucket....
Trembling, Zhou Yixing replied, “Enough! More than enough!!”
“Don’t skimp on the murdersoul spikes. Also, buy me some teleportation talismans and extra vengeful souls.” With that, the clone strutted off into the distance. As Zhou Yixing watched him go, he suddenly realized that this Grandmaster Bai was even more mysterious than he had realized. To casually produce so much Heavenspan River water was something that no ordinary person could do.
His determination to be a follower of Grandmaster Bai grew even stronger than before.