Rumbling booms filled the entire world of the magical item, mixed in with the shrieks of the ghost face, whose heart was filled with both madness and humiliation.
“Bai Xiaochun!!” he howled. “If I get out of here, I’m gonna slaughter your whole clan! I'm gonna skin you alive and make you into a !!”
Of course, he knew that shouting in this fashion was useless, and might make Bai Xiaochun want to kill him even more. But he was simply too frustrated, and if he didn’t vent somehow, then he would likely explode physically before Bai Xiaochun even killed him.
“Quite the temper!” Bai Xiaochun said with a glare. Snorting coldly, he accelerated, and more booms rang out. The ghost face shattered and reformed over and over again. Eventually, when it was obvious that he couldn’t escape, his eyes lit with madness, and he began to burn his divine soul to fuel a secret magic. A popping sound rang out, and he vanished into thin air.
“Eee?” Bai Xiaochun murmured. He sent some divine sense out to try to track down the ghost face, but after sweeping the entire world of the magical item, he couldn’t find even a trace of him.
“He comes from beyond the heavens, and was strong enough to fight the Celestial. I guess he must have some other strange techniques at his disposal….” After some contemplation, he still wasn’t willing to accept defeat so easily. He was convinced that his opponent might be able to hide, but wouldn’t be able to do so forever, and definitely wouldn’t be able to escape from the world of the magical item.
That, in turn, meant that he would be able to find him sooner or later.
“Ah, whatever. I’ll let him off the hook for now. Later on when I get bored, I can track him down and mop the floor with him. I can’t believe he dares to fight me! When I, Bai Xiaochun, get pissed off, I frighten even myself!” Snorting coldly, he put the ghost face out of his mind and returned to the wind valleys to continue his cultivation. At the moment, beating the ghost face nearly senseless had improved his mood significantly.
Meanwhile, in a random mountainous region far in the distance, the air rippled and distorted, and the ghost face cautiously appeared in the open. At first, he was somewhat blurry, as though he were still within the world, but separated from it by a layer of obscurity.
That diaphanous barrier was the key way he had evaded Bai Xiaochun’s divine sense. However, he was clearly in a very weakened state; the secret magic he had used came at a very steep price.
“Bai Xiaochun!!” he growled bitterly through gritted teeth. At the moment, he felt hopeless and lost; despite putting everything on the line, he had failed, leaving him on the verge of weeping.
An entire month flew by, which the ghost face spent in abject terror. With every moment that passed, he worried that Bai Xiaochun might suddenly pop up in front of him. It was a true torment.
In sharp contrast, Bai Xiaochun felt more blessed than ever. As he continued to practice cultivation in the wind valleys, his place in the late Deva Realm grew very stable. Sadly, the winds were also beginning to weaken, until one day, they vanished.
After his experience in the thundercloud region, it was no surprise to Bai Xiaochun. Eyes shining with anticipation, he looked in the direction of the sea of rainwater.
“I wonder… if I’ll become a demigod in here?” Excited by the mere thought, he headed toward the rain region.
Soon, he arrived, and didn’t even pause before entering the area.
Just like the lightning and the wind, the falling rain was filled with spiritual energy and life force. Bai Xiaochun laughed heartily as he headed to the depths of the region, sat down cross-legged, and began to absorb the spiritual energy there.
The world of the magical item was growing very quiet and calm. Months passed, and the ghost face continued to stew in bitterness and fear at the prospect of Bai Xiaochun suddenly trying to kill him. It was all made worse by the fact that Bai Xiaochun was getting more powerful by the day, whereas the ghost face… continued to experience a drop in cultivation base.
By now, he was fully in the mid Deva Realm, a level of weakness that filled his heart with increasing levels of terror. He didn’t ever dare to go out in the open, and could only pray that Bai Xiaochun continued to spend all his time working on cultivation.
Despite hoping that Bai Xiaochun had forgotten about him, he also continued to curse him in every vicious way imaginable.
“I curse you to die by spontaneous explosion!!”
“I curse you to experience energy deviation, and be destroyed in body and soul!”
“I, once a mighty quasi-archaean… could once kill an entire horde of worms like Bai Xiaochun with a mere wave of my finger. This level of bullying is ridiculous! I will definitely have my revenge one day!!!”
The ghost face looked up into the sky and reminisced about his past glories, which were the only things that gave him the courage to keep going in this situation.
Perhaps it was the ghost face’s sharp-tongued cursing, or perhaps there was some other reason, but that afternoon, Bai Xiaochun opened his eyes.
He suddenly felt uncomfortable, as though something wicked were lurking outside of the sea of rain. After only a short moment of thought, he came to the conclusion that it must be the ghost face.
“That old ghost is definitely saying bad things about me!” After looking off into the distance, he sped out of the rain region. Instead of sending his divine sense out, he simply relied on that sensation of wickedness to begin to track down its source.
The ghost face was hiding in the mountains, gritting his teeth, when suddenly his face fell. Then he burst into motion.
In the following instant, a boom echoed out from the spot he had just occupied, accompanied by a massive shockwave. Shrieking, the ghost face fled, popping into countless strands of black smoke that fled in all directions.
That was when Bai Xiaochun stepped out of nowhere.
“So, it really was you cursing me, you old ghost!” With that, he used the Undying Hex in combination with a fist strike.
His target wasn’t the ghost, but rather, a random spot in the air. The blow caused a black hole to spring up, the gravitational force of which caused all of the fleeing strands of black smoke to stop moving.
That brief pause was all the time Bai Xiaochun needed. Waving his sleeve, he unleashed the power of the late Deva Realm, creating a tempest that filled the entire area.
The black smoke shattered, reforming moments later into the full ghost face, who then tried to escape in a different direction. Yet again, he used that costly secret magic of his to vanish.
Irritated, Bai Xiaochun decided not to go back to the rain region, but instead spent the next several months thoroughly searching the world of the magical item. Occasionally, the ghost face’s secret magic would expire, and Bai Xiaochun would find him, whereupon he would be forced to use the secret magic again.
And thus Bai Xiaochun harried the ghost face without letup. After another month with no rest, the ghost face was on the verge of complete collapse, and was convinced that if things kept going on this way, his divine soul would eventually expire without the need for Bai Xiaochun to attack.
“He’s not going to give up until I'm dead, is he…?” The ghost face had already descended so far into madness he was almost dead inside. Again he used his secret magic, and when Bai Xiaochun found him this time, he spun, eyes bloodshot. Flames burst out around him, and he howled as though he were ready to fight to the death. Throwing caution to the wind, he did something he had never done so far. Whereas normally he existed only in the form of a head, all of a sudden, he sprouted a torso and four limbs. In the blink of an eye, he had become a pitch-black statue!
It was no illusory statue. It was corporeal, and possessed a powerful aura, like that of a god of battle. Without any hesitation, the statue lunged toward Bai Xiaochun.
“I am a mighty quasi-archaean! I've lived longer than you can imagine! It would be better to be dead than be tormented by the likes of you! Maybe you’re using underhanded means to gain the upper hand, but… I simply can’t endure anymore! Perhaps I’ll die, but at least I’ll die with dignity! Alright, if you want me dead, Bai Xiaochun, then bring it on!!”
The ghost face closed in, cackling madly, clearly intent on going out in a blaze of glory. As for Bai Xiaochun, his eyes glittered as he clenched his right hand into a fist and unleashed the Undying Emperor’s Fist.
Heaven and earth trembled violently as the shadowy emperor appeared behind him and also clenched his fist. When his blow landed on the pitch-black statue, it exploded into pieces!
The aura of death spread out in all directions, and the rubble that remained of the statue scattered onto the ground.
Not a scrap of life force could be sensed, as though the ghost face had truly died!
The backlash of the blow caused Bai Xiaochun’s entire body to vibrate as he staggered backward about 300 meters. There, he looked up in the direction of the rubble, a suspicious look on his face.