HSSB990: Yellow river floods troops
The Nine Bends Yellow River Formation of legend contained miraculous aspects of the heavens and the earth.
It contained the Immortal Bewitching Pill and the Secluded Immortal Mantra, being able to dwindle the minds of Immortals as well as disperse their souls, trap their forms, damage their qi, dispel their cores and harm their bodies.
The formation manifested the wonders of all creation, unravelling all those almighty immortals.
Qing Shuzi, Zhang Shuren and the others were knowledgeable people. Having already experienced the awesomeness of the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation firsthand, they definitely knew that this grand formation before them truly posed a serious threat to them.
Of course, it might not be as domineering as in the legends, 'Immortals who step within become mortals, mortals who step within instantly perish'.
Still, not a single one of them was an Immortal.
Now that they were trapped within the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation, they were placed in a perilous situation from which there might truly be no return.
Blown by that black fog of nether wind, their minds were corroded as they inevitably became dizzy.
The acupoints of their bodies which resembled the actual stars of the sky actually felt like they were being blocked up now.
The first step in Seeing Divinity Martial Saints ascending the Immortal Bridge was them letting their acupoints which had already seen true Divinity circulate, possessing their own natural laws and orbits like the actual stars up in the sky.
From the seventh to eighth level of the Martial Saint realm, one would have to reach the point where the acupoints that resembled stars within their bodies would naturally be extinguished.
Just like people, stars also had longevities of their own. It was just that they were extremely long. Still, stars would similarly die one day.
For martial practitioners who cultivated their inner universes to resonate with the actual stars of the external world, they had to take this step as well.
When their acupoints naturally died in the process of cultivation, martial practitioners would not be weakened.
While they might be fewer, they would have qualitatively attained a whole new level.
Life and death were the main theme of this world's eternal balance.
Life would become death before life was reborn anew, such a cycle repeating as per heaven's will.
The hallmark of eighth level Martial Saints becoming ninth level Martial Saints was them refining completely new acupoints in place of those old ones, much like the birth of new stars.
At this point, their strength would rise yet once more as they attained the late Immortal Bridge stage.
The cycle of life and death aside, their orbits would be unceasingly refined and stabilised as the inner universe within the martial practitioner's body became closer to the actual universe.
In this process, the comprehension of the martial practitioner regarding the principles of the heavens and the earth and their grasp of their own physical conditions would become increasingly clearer and in depth.
When all their acupoints had been refined to achieve Divinity like the stars of the sky, their inner universes would truly be resonating with the external one as they would hence have a chance of accomplishing the Human Exalt stage.
It was just that achieving this was a very difficult thing.
Most martial practitioners were unable to do so their entire lives.
Still, some of these people did have some chance of success.
This was especially so for Qing Shuzi and Yuan Xiancheng.
Now, however, they could clearly sense that affected by the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation, the insides of their bodies had actually become unstable.
As the nether winds gusted, beneath the assault of the black fog, the three ninth level Martial Saints, Qing Shuzi, Peng He and Zhang Shuren, all vaguely felt as if they were unable to evoke the rebirth of their acupoints.
Their extinguished acupoints were no longer reborn as it was as if their cultivation bases had fallen back into the eighth level of the Martial Saint realm.
Yuan Xiancheng and Daoist Leading Mist of the eighth level of the Martial Saint realm felt as though while their acupoints which had seen true Divinity were still circulating, they had become sluggish.
Their acupoints were unable to be extinguished following their birth as they had lost some partial characteristics of stars, seemingly having plummeted to the seventh level of the Martial Saint realm.
They were even more shocked by the fact that things did not seem to have ended just like that.
As time passed, these effects still seemed to be gradually intensifying!
"As long as we are assaulted by the black fog of nether wind now, our cultivation bases will be suppressed temporarily," Zhang Shuren said in a heavy tone, "But if we end up unconscious, our foundations would truly be harmed, our cultivation bases dropping as all our previous efforts would have been for naught!"
Qing Shuzi snorted coldly, "It will also be the same if we linger here for too long. We have to leave!"
Amidst his words, he flicked his long sleeve, shifting space as he dispelled the black fog and nether winds before him.
Yet, even time and space were affected by the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation as everything was distorted in the first place. Even with Qing Shuzi's strength, he was still hard pressed to charge out from within it.
Peng He and the others dared not hesitate in the least as they too hurriedly exerted their might.
The Riding Wind Heavenly Vessel shot into the air, breaking the waves and tides as it sought to flee the imprisonment of the dark yellow river.
However, facing the waves which surged over like a tsunami, they were still rocked about all over, only barely being able to keep the vessel from being overturned.
Gazing over, it was still pitch black all around as the light of day could not be seen, the directions unidentifiable from one another.
Their hearts just burned with desperation. Yet, Yan Zhaoge had already established the formation which encompassed the entirety of the domain of Circumference Mountain with the power of the Dynasty River to assist him.
Looking from the external world, one would see that the entirety of Circumference Mountain had been drowned by the dark yellow river.
Gazing from high above, one would see the nine meandering bends of the dark yellow river which were filled with the profundities of all creation.
Yet, the surface of the river was enveloped by worrying winds and tragic fog, baleful air pressuring down as it evoked fear and panic in the hearts of all.
Beneath the overlapping layers of space, the space of the grand formation was even broader, also changing unceasingly as Peng He and the others were unable to flee despite charging desperately out with all their might.
"We are not proficient in formations. Charging blindly out like this is just pointless. Now, there is already not much time left," Qing Shuzi did not lose his composure.
As time passed, he too was left dizzy from the black fog of nether winds as he could only focus his spirits, "This Nine Bends Yellow River Formation is the handiwork of Immortals of legend. It is not something that just anyone would be able to set up."
"That fella surnamed Yan is outstanding and skilled in formations. Still, the gap in our cultivation bases is still there at the end of the day."
"He too should need to fully concentrate and go all out in controlling such a peerless, fearsome formation. It would definitely be impossible for he himself to battle someone else now!"
Hearing Qing Shuzi say this, Peng He and the others understood what he meant.
"If we constantly go around the formation in circles like this, we would only be playing into his hands," Peng He said urgently, "We have to aim for his unguarded self to break the formation."
Currently in the form of a Wutong tree that was rooted to the deck of the vessel as he resisted the assault of the black fog of nether wind, Zhang Shuren now spoke, "All formations have their cores. That Yan Zhaoge must surely be at the core of his formation. In that case, we must go where this formation is most vicious."
"We have to enter the tiger's lair if we are to emerge victorious!"
Peng He handed over control of the Riding Wind Heavenly Vessel to Zhang Shuren, who analysed the variations of the formation with much difficulty using his knowledge of formations as he led them all to the most vicious part of the formation.
"Go!" Everyone painstakingly resisted the effects of the Nine Bends Yellow River Formation as they advanced, Peng He wielding his hands as sabres and simultaneously hacking outwards.
A fiery phoenix with an unusual dim blue lustre flew outwards, brutal to the extreme as it opened a path.
Qing Shuzi executed the supreme martial art, Primordial Heavenly Flying Sleeve, of Illusory Coming Peak's direct lineage, transforming extreme softness into extreme toughness now. As he flicked his sleeve outwards, it was like a sharp blade that powerfully cleaved through space.
Daoist Leading Mist and Yuan Xiancheng sat on the deck of the Riding Wind Heavenly Vessel in the meditative position as they stabilised their minds.
As time passed, these two eighth level Martial Saints who were usually rampant and unbridled in the outside world were already hard pressed to hold on as they could only remain there quietly.
The two had not even the leisure to feel despondent now as their hearts were instead full of worry.
If this was not put a stop to soon, they too would end up suffering the tragic fate that had already befallen their weaker companions.
The pressure was mounting ceaselessly, even for the three ninth level Martial Saints, Qing Shuzi, Peng He and Zhang Shuren!