“Rule of the Secret Realm: There are five Heaven Qi Plaques and five Earth Qi Plaques . Only those who possess the Heaven or Earth Qi Plaques have the right to access the Secret Realm . ”
“Rule of the Secret Realm: Outside the Secret Realm, the strength of the Spirit Pressure Barrier is 25 times stronger than the Spirit Pressure formed by 100 wisps of Spirit Qi . ”
This was the rule that Lu Fan had set, using 10 points of Soul Strength, when he was in the midst of creating the Secret Realm of the Hidden Dragon Ridge .
He had also let Lv Mudui spread the word about the first rule of the Secret Realm .
Everybody knew that it was impossible to enter the Secret Realm without a Heaven or Earth Qi Plaque .
So what were these four people up to?
On Beiluo Lake Island, in the patio of the second floor of White Jade City…
Lu Fan fiddled with a few chess pieces, his face void of emotion .
On the Spirit Pressure Chessboard, lines of Spirit Qi highlighted the contours of the Hidden Dragon Ridge, creating the outline of a mountain range .
A few kilometers from the confines of the barrier, four people were slowly making their way forward .
“Xiang Shaoyun… He is truly a strong-willed fellow . ”
A faint smile tugged at the corners of Lu Fan’s mouth .
Sipping the green plum wine, Lu Fan set a black pawn on the chessboard .
At once, the winds changed . All the Spirit Pressure that had been accumulated in the Spirit Pressure Barrier was instantly released .
“I, Lu Fan, am a mild-tempered person . I shall give you a chance to challenge the rules… But if you fail, death shall await you,” Lu Fan murmured to himself as if he was in deep thought .
After that, he raised his wine glass and ordered, “Ni, pour me another glass of wine . ”
Outside the Hidden Dragon Ridge…
Leveraging on the pressure that pervaded the space between heaven and earth, the four people were progressing slowly . They appeared to be very composed and took their time as if they were in no rush at all .
Mo Shougui was an elegant young man . He was extraordinarily handsome, with his cherry-red lips and pearly whites, and his eyes seemed to speak .
He stared at Xiang Shaoyun’s back and narrowed his eyes .
Except for the Hundred Schools of Philosophy and giants in the field, Xiang Shaoyun and Li Sansi were the only people in the entire world who were capable of catching his attention .
Mo Shougui and Xiang Shaoyun were very familiar with each other . After all, the Mo family supported the aristocratic Xiang family, and it could even be said that Mo Shougui and Xiang Shaoyun had grown up together .
Before the age of ten, Mo Shougui had spent his life living in Xiang Shaoyun’s shadow . But after he had turned ten, Mo Shougui was no longer willing to be overshadowed . He left for the West County and paid a visit to the Hundred Schools of Philosophy, where he picked up the schools’ specialties . As a result of his efforts, he finally came to be of equal standing as Xiang Shaoyun, where the most outstanding heroes were concerned .
Just as Mo Shougui was staring at Xiang Shaoyun, his facial expression changed . The gigantic “eggshell” of the Immortal spot quivered slightly, and a stream of pale blue air seemed to spurt out of it .
“What is that?”
Mo Shougui took a deep breath . While he had covered nearly every place on earth and learned the specialties of the Hundred Schools of Philosophy, he had never encountered anything like this before .
Could this be… the legendary Immortal encounter?
Li Sansi, who was riding a black ox, raised his eyebrows too . With his white robes fluttering in the wind, he appeared to be a little astonished and a little curious .
On the other hand, Xiang Shaoyun was ecstatic .
It was Spirit Qi, indeed!
One, two, three…
He did a quick count . On cursory examination, there were easily a thousand wisps of Spirit Qi!
If he could absorb all the Spirit Qi, his skills would surely be capable of breaking the shackles that presently bind him!
Kong Nanfei, who was carrying the book box, wiped the beads of sweat off his forehead . He steeled his gaze and said, “His Majesty and Mentor were right . Such mysterious things… do exist in this world! Spirit Qi from heaven and earth… This will change the structure of everything on earth . ”
The four of them continued to look on, but this time, their steps hastened .
None of them had obtained a Heaven or Earth Qi Plaque, but this was mainly because they all had the intention of competing against one another .
Xiang Shaoyun took another step . Finally, he was within 500 meters of the Spirit Pressure Barrier .
Similarly, Mo Shougui and Kong Nanfei withstood the immense pressure to enter the area .
As for Li Sansi, he took an alternative approach . To one’s surprise, he never dismounted the ox . Instead, he carried on under the pressure, all while riding his black ox .
In the space between heaven and earth, the crisp sound of a chess piece being placed on a chessboard resounded .
In the next moment…
All of a sudden, intangible ripples and blasts of air spread from within the Spirit Pressure Barrier .
Upon taking a direct hit from the blast of air to his muscular body, Xiang Shaoyun grew with rage and let out an explosive roar!
Unusual sounds could be heard from every inch of his body, as though the blast of air had been released into a gushing river . Xiang Shaoyun had become as stalwart as a demon .
His body leaned forward, but he remained rooted to the ground, his eyes bloodshot .
“The Mighty Pressure of an Immortal?”
“Nobody can get in my way of obtaining an Immortal encounter!” Xiang Shaoyun let out a deep growl, like that of a beast .
As a prodigy, he had been able to destroy a Grandmaster at the age of six, become a Five Resonance Grandmaster at the age of ten, and developed a reputation of being virtually invincible by the age of fifteen .
He was engaged in a relentless pursuit of constant breakthroughs, often challenging the very limits of martial arts .
Following Lu Fan’s placement of another chess piece across space, the Spirit Pressure of the barrier erupted entirely .
The strength of the Spirit Pressure was 25 times stronger than the Spirit Pressure formed by 100 wisps of Spirit Qi—that was equivalent to the total Spirit Pressure of five consecutive black pawns placed by Lu Fan .
This was definitely too powerful for any ordinary person to withstand .
Bang! Bang! Bang!
Xiang Shaoyun’s legs penetrated the ground, giving rise to cracks in the earth’s surface . Despite this, he remained standing, refusing to let himself be sent flying by the immense Spirit Pressure .
On the other side…
Mo Shougui had also encountered this immense pressure .
The sword at his waist flew straight into the air, before plummeting to the ground .
Yet, as a result of the emerging pressure, the blade of the sword had been bent so much that it was on the verge of breaking .
He did not expect this Immortal spot to explode in such a horrifying manner so abruptly!
Mo Shougui was sweating buckets . He raised his head to look into the Spirit Pressure “eggshell . ”
Suddenly, he discovered a faint human silhouette on the surface of the “eggshell . ” The eyes of the silhouette were attached to the “eggshell,” and they stared dully through the surface .
There was… a person in the Immortal spot?!
Mo Shougui froze .
Alas… the Spirit Pressure exploded once again .
Mo Shougui spat a mouthful of blood before collapsing to the ground .
With his face still stuck to the ground, he let out a roar of defeat!
“Give me the ‘Earth Qi Plaque’!”
He was terrified .
In the face of heaven’s might and an undefeatable demonlike force, he had chosen to surrender .
A piercing sound cut through the air .
A black plaque was tossed swiftly by one of the masters from the Mo family . The plaque flew through the air at an incredible speed and landed beside Mo Shougui .
Mo Shougui grabbed the Earth Qi Plaque .
At once, with the sudden disappearance of the excruciating pressure, he felt an acute sense of relief, akin to how fish must feel in the vast sea and birds in the boundless sky .
Firmly gripping the Earth Qi Plaque in his hands, Mo Shougui looked toward that “eggshell,” the fire in his eyes burning brighter and brighter .
On the other side…
Li Sansi was in a very sorry state .
As soon as the immense Spirit Pressure had emerged, his black ox had crouched immediately, causing him to lose his balance and tragically fall onto the ground .
Shortly after that, the horrifying pressure had held him down to the point that his organs were on the verge of repositioning themselves in his body .
Just then, he drew the wooden sword he kept at his waist and summoned every ounce of his Qi and blood in an attempt to go against the pressure . But alas, he still failed to withstand the immense pressure .
As such, Li Sansi had no choice but to surrender, and he did so with one final roar of defeat . Under such dire circumstances, he had no consideration for upholding his elegant image .
If he had not chosen to surrender, there was a real possibility that he could have been crushed alive by the immense pressure .
A few kilometers away…
A Daoist nun clad in Daoist robes descended from the sky . Upon hearing Li Sansi’s sorry screams, she expressionlessly tossed out a White Jade Plaque and a Heaven Qi Plaque .
Many of those in the vicinity trembled slightly upon seeing the Daoist nun .
This Daoist nun was none other than Li Sansi’s biological sister—Daoist the Second, Li Sansui* .
However, the Daoist nun, Li Sansui, did not like her name, so she preferred others to address her by her Daoist monastic name, Mo Chou .
Scholar Kong Nanfei was begging for help too .
In fact, he had begun to beg for help much earlier than Li Sansi and Mo Shougui .
As soon as the Spirit Pressure appeared, he had called out instantly . In response to this, Mo Tianyu’s silhouette had appeared to throw out the Heaven Qi Plaque .
The three of them, who had each gotten hold of a Qi Plaque, no longer felt any pressure . However, their hearts were now more unsettled than ever .
This Secret Realm of the Immortal spot… was truly different from the nonsense fabricated by the Yinyang School . Now, this was the real deal!
That mighty pressure from earlier had given them all a taste of death .
Presently, Xiang Shaoyun was the last man standing—the only one of them who still bore the pressure based on his solo efforts .
With rapid breaths, everyone stared at Xiang Shaoyun, who was shivering from head to toe, his legs sinking in deep mud .
The Western Liang generals were ecstatic—this was their Overlord, indeed!
Their invincible Overlord!
On Beiluo Lake Island…
“This is interesting . Previously on the Dao Impartment Platform, you had a knack for shouldering everything too . Since you like that so much, let’s see how long you can persist,” Lu Fan remarked, before taking another swig of the green plum wine .
Subsequently, he set another chess piece down on the Spirit Pressure Chessboard, thereby triggering another turbulence on the roof of the pavilion .
Ripples appeared on the surface of Beiluo Lake .
At the Hidden Dragon Ridge, before the Spirit Pressure Barrier…
Xiang Shaoyun’s pupils were dilated, and blood was flowing steadily from his nose and mouth . Bearing the weight of a mountain, the enormous Spirit Pressure threatened to crush him flat .
Gradually, he was bending at the waist, and his knees were close to giving in as they quivered intensely under the pressure .
Xiang Shaoyun had finally reached his limits; he could no longer withstand the heavy weight of the pressure . He let out a low rumble as his knees crashed toward the ground, causing fissures to form in the earth .
In this instant, all of heaven and earth seemed to have become completely still . It was as if time had stopped .
Not a single sound could be heard for a few kilometers .
Everyone was stunned .
The Overlord… had fallen to his knees .
A feminine silhouette emerged from the crowd, her tulle skirt flowing behind her . She appeared to be visibly worried and upset .
Luo Mingsang made use of every bit of her Qi and blood to produce a Heaven Qi Plaque .
With his head lowered in shame, Xiang Shaoyun raised his hands immediately to catch the plaque .
At once, all the pressure on his body melted away .
Despite this, Xiang Shaoyun was still in a bit of a trance, after what he had just been through .
On Lake Island…
Lu Fan leaned against his wheelchair lazily, swirling a bronze cup in his hand .
“You still went down on your knees, after all… I suppose this marks the end of the appetiser . It’s now time for serious business . I hope… heroes like you won’t disappoint me,” Lu Fan said with a chuckle .
Instead of placing another chess piece on the board, he set his bronze cup down and used his slender index finger to gently tap on the Spirit Pressure Barrier reflected on the chessboard .
“Bam . ”
At the Hidden Dragon Ridge…
When everyone was appalled by the Overlord’s decision to go down on his knees, the giant Spirit Pressure Barrier shattered in a flash, without any warning!
It burst as if it were an iridescent bubble that had been punctured by someone’s finger!
In the blink of an eye, a fierce gale came on . This was followed by the appearance of an unbridled but rejuvenating stream of air .
Against the howling wind, the people raised their hands to shield their eyes . Faintly, they could see a majestic underground palace materializing right before them!
The Secret Realm of Immortal encounters… had been activated!
*Literally translates to “three-year-old Li . ”