In the Third Region, there were Chinese asters shading each other under the sun, lofty buildings made of bamboo and beautiful hills with streams across thousands of miles of land, but these were just an illusion. If it wasn’t because for the black mist covering the sky, no one would have thought that this was the settlement of the ghosts. The sage-like experts in the region were all Gold Core ferocious ghosts.
It wasn’t a paradise but a place with a bad omen.
The Bone Emperor had already given the orders to the ghosts of all regions. The ghosts in the Third Region were ghosts with intelligence. They were patrolling everywhere in search for the two beings which had offended the Bone Emperor.
The first being was ‘Princess Mei’ named Mei Chen. She was the thief that had stolen something from the Bone Emperor. Despite the fear that they had for her, she was severely injured now. So she wouldn’t be as intimidating as before.
The second being was the one who killed the Bone Emperor’s incarnation. According to the Bone Emperor’s senses, it was a human who practiced the Evil Dao that killed his incarnation.
The order that the infuriated Bone Emperor gave was to kill them on sight. He had already sentenced Ning Fan to death.
In the forest and mountains, movements of light were seen everywhere. Every expert was carrying a murderous intent and cold expression. The lowest cultivation that one had among them was early Gold Core realm. When these early Gold Core ghosts were compared to the old experts outside the forest, they were undeniably stronger.
On top of a ten-thousand-meter and grassless mountain, Ning Fan released his spirit sense with caution. He heaved a sigh of relief after escaping from the ghosts’ hunt.
Just now, he sneaked near a lone ghost using his incarnation and killed it. The moment he kept the loot—the Gold Core Sense Bead—countless of ghosts targeted him due to the ruckus that he created when he killed the ghost.
It wasn’t unusual that he was chased by all the ghosts because he had killed one of them. However, he did not believe that these ghosts were chasing after him because they wanted to avenge their dead comrade.
He then remained silent. He patted his storage pouch to retrieve the loot of the Gold Core ghost. He wanted to search for something in its memory. Since he had just entered a new region, it was better if he knew something about this region.
This early Gold Core ghost was named Zhou Ming. The memory of his human life had become blurred but the memory of his ghost life was crystal clear.
There were fifteen clans among the ghosts in the Third Region. Three of the clans had close relationship with the Demon Race, which rebelled against the rule of the Bone Emperor. The other twelve clans were the ghosts hunting for Ning Fan now.
“So that Void Fragmentation old expert is named Bone Emperor. Twelve of the clans begun their hunt for me after a single order from him!” Ning Fan’s gaze turned cold as he continued to scan the rest of the memory.
This Gold Core ghost named Zhou Ming had an arrogant attitude. He had rejected the recruitment of the twelve clans and disdained the other three clans which supported the Demon Race. So, this time when he came out, he was looking for the perfect time to create troubles and acquire some benefits from it, but who would have thought that trouble would find him first.
In his memory, every clan was storing a certain amount of Sense Beads. None of the ghosts would be able to absorb these Sense Beads, so they used it to craft Spirit Magical Treasures. This had undoubtedly increased the difficulty of eliminating these Gold Core ghosts.
After searching the memory, the spirit of Zhou Ming in the Sense Bead dissipated, Ning Fan opened his lower jaw and muttered softly.
Killing the ghosts for the beads had become very risky because the Third Region had turned very chaotic. It was beyond Ning Fan’s expectation that most of the ghosts in this region was hunting for him. If he killed one of them, his identity would be exposed and he would be hunted by countless of ghosts.
This was the power of the Bone Emperor. A single order from him could command an army of ghosts.
It was unrealistic to dominate the Third Region now. Perhaps going back to the Second Region to kill those Harmonious Spirit ghosts was a more pleasant choice.
There were quite a lot of Harmonious Spirit Sense Beads in his storage pouch but he realised that these beads had become less effective since his spirit sense realm had already reached intermediate Gold Core.
Perhaps returning to the Second Region and waiting for the second trial to end could guarantee his safety, but he could no longer raise his spirit sense to the Nascent Soul realm.
Staying here would bring him a great amount of danger or even death but he still felt reluctant to leave.
As Ning Fan took out Zhou Ming’s storage pouch, an audacious idea that could kill two birds in one stone struck him.
If he disguised himself as Zhou Ming, and cause chaos within the clans by stealing away those Sense Beads and herbs, what would happen?
There were at least hundreds of Gold Core Sense Beads in every clan. With these many Sense Beads, it wouldn’t be a problem for him to break through to the late Gold Core realm.
He had to admit that despite his current strength and the help of the small sable, he wouldn’t be able to collect up to ten Sense Beads in half a month’s time, and he would definitely be chased after by an army of ghosts.
It was the most desirable outcome, to obtain a few hundred of Sense Beads without shedding a drop of blood.
After a moment of contemplation, he said to the small sable in his embrace, “Little Black, I am going into a ghost clan to steal things.”
The small sable was yawning sleepily at the moment but when she heard Ning Fan’s words, it stirred up her emotions, causing all of her hair to stand on its ends. “Have you gone mad again? You are a living human. If you enter a ghost clan, you will be noticed immediately. Do you want to die so badly? The weakest clan has at least ten peak Gold Core ghosts guarding it. Your death would be certain if they besiege you, stupid!”
“There is no need to worry. I have my ways to hide my identity.”
“Who said that I am worried for you?! I only fear that you will die so easily because that means I would die too!” The small sable curled her lips. Her temper had gotten quite bad recently.
“I just need to be more careful.”
Ning Fan smiled faintly. He emitted the force of his spirit sense to wrap his body. It then turned into a cold and chilling ghost Qi. His cultivation had become untraceable.
He looked like a late Harmonious Spirit expert and an intermediate Gold Core expert. Of course, that was merely an illusion, especially his intermediate Gold Core realm.
This magical art wasn’t the Falsifying Art. It was the spiritual Qi of his incarnation. It was used to cover up all his Yang Qi, making him look like a ghost, but it wouldn’t allow him to exert the intermediate Gold Core magical power and change his look.
“Disguising my look to look like the ghost who just died innocently may work. None of them would be able to recognize him because Zhou Ming had always been alone and arrogant. He never had any close friends.”
Although he could conceal the Yang Qi of a living person, it couldn’t change his face and cultivation. These two elements wouldn’t be a problem to Ning Fan.
There were only a small number of ghosts who recognized Zhou Ming. And nearly all of them didn’t know how Zhou Ming actually looked like.
As for the aspect of cultivation, the other ghosts would think that his unstable intermediate Gold Core cultivation grade was because he was going to break through the real intermediate Gold Core realm soon. So this fluctuating intermediate Gold Core realm fitted the profile of an early Gold Core expert, Zhou Ming.
However, there was still a flaw despite the disguise. The flaw lied on the Netherworld Sable—Mei Chen who had strong oppressive power against the ghosts. It seemed like he had to temporarily keep Mei Chen into the cauldron.
He opened Zhou Ming’s storage pouch and saw two magical treasures refined by Sense Beads. Both of them had reached the intermediate-Early Ranked Magical Treasure. One was a shiny black defensive shield named ‘Ironbone Shield’. The other one was a lotus shape concealed magical treasure named ‘Blacklotus Nail’.
There was a wooden plate in the storage pouch, the name of ‘Zhou Ming’ was carved on it. It was used as the identity plate for all the ghosts.
Now, it seemed as if there was no more problem in hiding in a small sable and disguising as Zhou Ming. As long as he is careful in the ghost clan, he would be able to steal a few hundred Sense Beads. His spirit sense realm would then break through to the late Gold Core realm.
He then spoke with a steady eye expression, “I have already decided to steal the Sense Beads from one of the clans. For safety purposes, I will pick the weakest ghost clan to enter. Out of the fifteen ghost clans, ‘Ivory Clan’ is the weakest. The Sense Beads that I stole will belong to me and the herbs I stole will belong to you. I will be able to escape from it, even if my cover is blown. If there is a chance, I will eradicate the entire Ivory Clan.”
The small sable strained her eyebrows. Ning Fan didn’t give her the chance to disagree.
Sneaking into the ghost clan? How could she possibly stop him? When she heard Ning Fan’s plan of causing trouble in Ivory Clan, she showed a pleading expression.
“Don’t go to Ivory Clan…”
“Why?” Ning Fan raised his eyebrow. Could it be that there was a relationship between her and Ivory Clan?
“Not only Ivory Clan. Purple Clan and Red Clan too. These three clans were once my underlings, although they have become rebellious now…” The small sable added the last sentence with sadness.
Ivory Clan was the weakest clan of all. He would get the highest success rate or safety rate by entering into this clan, but the small sable’s pleading made Ning Fan change his mind.
This female sable did have a complicated character. She was irresolute and hesitant, timid and overcautious, not fitted to be a Void Fragmentation expert. However, there was one thing which Ning Fan admired. That was the fact that she valued friendships and relationships. This fact alone gave Ning Fan the willingness to take higher risks for her.
“Alright, I won’t touch these three clans. I will change my target to Green Clan now. There are a total of eleven peak Gold Core experts in it. I need to be very careful when I enter this clan in order to prevent any accidents from happening.”
“You…Thank you… But where do I hide when you enter the clan? Could it be.. there…?” The small sable glanced at the Cauldron Ring in his left wrist and blushed. She knew that it wasn’t merely a fascinating magical treasure, but was a magical treasure to keep cauldrons. There were quite many females that had been kept in it by this filthy man.
“Why do you ask since you already knew?”
Ning Fan teased her as he held the golden Sense Bead that belonged to Zhou Ming.
The bloodline in this Sense Bead was denser and had turned golden. The force of evil Yin in this Sense Bead astonished Ning Fan. Soul Enhancing Dan, a Second Revolution pill, wouldn’t be enough to purify the force of evil Yin within the Sense Bead. He would need to concoct a Third Revolution pill—Profound Netherworld Dan—before he could consume the Sense Bead.
Without the Profound Netherworld Dan, consuming the Sense Bead was akin to seeking death.
The ten Soul Enhancing Dan in his storage pouch had become useless.
While he was in contemplation, his facial expression changed all of a sudden. He kept the Sense Bead in a hurry. Then, without explaining to the small sable, he waved his Cauldron Ring and kept the sable into the red misty dimension.
She exclaimed, but before she could react, she had already appeared in a paradise of green hills and fresh water.
“Despicable! You kept me in here! You, you!” The small sable was highly irritated.
Later, a big pile of millennium herbs were thrown into the world from outside. They hit the head of the sable like rain, followed by Ning Fan’s voice.
“Stay in the Cauldron Ring to recover your strength with these herbs until you regain peak Gold Core realm. Later on, I will need your help. There is someone coming, I’m afraid he is coming after your Qi.”
Ning Fan explained. It frightened the small sable a little that an expert had found her so quickly.
After entering the Cauldron Ring, she could no longer remain in her sable appearance due to the red mist and turned into a bare bodied beauty with white jade skin. It made her feel so ashamed. At this time, she hoped that Ning Fan wasn’t peeking at her right now.
“He dares to keep Mei Chen in something called a ‘Cauldron Ring’? Could it be that this filthy man really wants to turn me into a cauldron? Does his puny body have the capability to pluck me?”
A robe that belonged to Ning Fan fell from the sky.
Mei Chen wore the robe. Although she hated Ning Fan’s scent, she hated to be nude and letting Ning Fan to see it all even more.
Her gaze shifted to the countless numbers of herbs, which made her feel better.
“Just wait until I recover my peak Gold Core strength, then I will punish you nicely!” She sat on a grassy plain, slanting on one side and bit on a Bodhi Fruit. The creamy white milk juice of the fruit flowed out from her lips.”
“I have to say, this is a truly fascinating and an abstruse magical treasure. This is my first time witnessing it. I was unconscious when I went in the last time.” Mei Chen’s mood was getting better. She swept around the surroundings as she ate the herbs. Her eyes were filled with slight amazement.
This was undeniably a strange and profound treasure, and that she didn’t know where Ning Fan got it from.
In the outside world, Ning Fan was standing on the hill. He frowned but released it after an instant.
Roughly ten movements of light were surging to the summit from below. They were trailing Ning Fan’s and Mei Chen’s Qi.
“Kill them, the Qi of Princess Mei is up there!”
It only took two breaths of time for over sixty Gold Core ghosts to surround Ning Fan on the summit of the mountain.
The thing was they didn’t find the Qi of Princess Mei when they reached here. This had baffled them because none of them saw Mei Chen fleeing or moving. How was she gone?
Their leader was an elder in bone armour. He scanned Ning Fan and noticed that he was a Gold Core ghost that was about to break through to an intermediate Gold Core. Besides finding Ning Fan unfamiliar, there wasn’t any more doubts about him.
“I am the Great Elder of Bone Clan, Gu Mo. Which ghost clan are you from? And what’s your name? Have you seen which way has Prince Mei gone to?”
The cultivation grade of the elder with the bone armour was merely half a step away from the Nascent Soul realm. He was an elder of Bone Clan. When he spoke, his eyes were partly shut. Apparently, he didn’t put Ning Fan in his eyes at all.
Ning Fan was merely an intermediate Gold Core ghost, which the elder could kill at his whim. He wouldn’t be inclined to have a conversation with Ning Fan if it wasn’t to gain information about Princess Mei.
Ning Fan’s was smiling in his heart when the elder didn’t attack him. It meant that his disguise as a ghost was very successful because not even an expert who was only half a step away from Nascent Soul could distinguish his real identity.
All of his previous concerns had been relieved. He took a deep breath and pretended to be frightened. He held his fists at the bone-armoured elder while his body was shivering. One could tell how timid he was.
“My name is Zhou Ming. I am a loner. I don’t belong to any ghost clan…”
“Make it short. I am not interested in your background! Tell me whether you have seen the betrayer, Princess Mei!” The elder was annoyed when he heard the unfamiliar name ‘Zhou Ming’.
“Yes sir. My head was dizzy just now but I saw a silhouette flash past me. It was heading towards the north. I am unclear of any details other than that. From what senior said, could that black silhouette be the Princess Mei who offended Bone Emperor?” Ning Fan maintained his frightened expression. His body was still shivering greatly.
“That’s right. It’s her. What are you afraid of?! She is a tiger without any teeth now! She is severely injured and her cultivation grade is lower than Gold Core realm. If you are bold enough, you might be able to take down that demon now and earn a great merit. Now regret for your timidity, kid!”
The elder let out a cold humph and ignored Ning Fan. In his eyes, Ning Fan was as timid as a mouse. He had low cultivation grade, and unstable Qi. He wouldn’t be a great hunter for his team. The elder then led his team of experts and headed north.
After the group of ghosts left, Ning Fan switched his frightened expression to a firm look. He narrowed his eyes and his eyes became slightly heavy.
“Bone Clan…it is ranked as the third highest clan among the fifteen clans in the Third Region. I didn’t expect that there will be an expert that is only half step away from Nascent Soul realm. He will be invincible across Yue Country, but it is only the Great Elder of Bone Clan in Demon Sinister Forest.”
The overall strength of the ghosts in Third Region was greater than Yue Country. In the Fourth Region, he was afraid that any ghost king would be able to eradicate the entire Yue Country.
There were still the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Region which was resided in by Bone Emperor. Bone Emperor was the devil which he had offended, causing countless ghosts to be frightened.
Even if he had offended Bone Emperor, so what?! Ning Fan was a person with supreme audacity. If he had the chance, he wouldn’t hesitate to slash at Bone Emperor to finish him off.
“As long as my spirit sense realm reaches late Gold Core, it shouldn’t be a problem to kill the Great Elder of Bone Clan using my incarnation and the small sable’s strength.”
Ning Fan muttered. If that bone armoured elder heard this, he would be shocked. How could a timid youth scheme against him behind his back? When did he become so audacious?
Ning Fan kept his expression. He casted the movement of light and flew towards the eastern region. There were plenty of rivers in this region. At the bank of the green river was the location of Green Clan. He had to start from Green Clan in order to overthrow the Third Region.
There were 1, 152 early Gold Core ghosts in the Green Clan, 449 intermediate Gold Core ghosts, 124 late Gold Core ghosts, 11 peak Gold Core ghosts and 0 Nascent Soul ghost.
The condition to join Green Clan was simple. One simply needed to kill one of them and use the dead ghost’s identity and status!
[Suffocating from the length of the words. Please help in Patreon.]
Certain name of skills will be italicized. Some terms are subject to change when better suggestions are selected.