The descending ancient starship instantly came to a stop.
With knitted brow, Jing Feiyang looked down at the snow-capped mountains. With a grim face, he said aloud,
“Those mountains actually make up a grand spell formation. If we land our ancient starship regardless of it, our starship might be affected, or even torn apart.”
Patriarch Icy Crystal shot into the sky from within the mountain valley, and stopped in front of the ancient starship in the blink of an eye.
“Why did you imprison the subordinates of a Son of the Stars, Patriarch Icy Crystal?” Jing Feiyang asked with a berating tone.
“He knows why,” Patriarch Icy Crystal said, pointing at Nie Tian.
With a confused look on his face, Nie Tian said, “I really don’t.”
“You don’t?!” Patriarch Icy Crystal asked, trying hard to suppress his anger.
Before Nie Tian could say anything, he took out a piece of sparkling, crystal-clear jade from within his cuff.
Immediately afterwards, images appeared in the jade that looked like a mirror.
After seeing at the images in the jade, Nie Tian’s expression flickered slightly as he muttered, “I can’t believe it’s because of this...”
Duan Shihu was also dumbfounded. “This is...”
The images that flashed across the icy jade were those of Gao Linhu and his lackeys right before they had died.
Nie Tian, Xie Wanting, Yin Yanan, and Mu Biqiong could all be seen in them.
Gao Linhu and a few other disciples of the Heavenly Ice Sect had ambushed Nie Tian and the girls at the edge of the Bloody Grave Mountain Range. However, they had been defeated and killed instead due to their blind arrogance.
Nie Tian had assumed that since no one else had witnessed their battle back then, people wouldn’t learn about it. He had never expected that the Heavenly Ice Sect would actually gain proof of them killing Gao Linhu and his men.
“Gao Linhu and those with him were my legacy disciples!” Patriarch Icy Crystal said with an ice-cold tone. “I paid a great price to cultivate them and arrange for them to enter the Shatter Battlefield. Not only did I pass all my knowledge on to them, but they’re also the future of the Heavenly Ice Sect. They were in the Bloody Grave Mountain Range to make use of its special environment to practice the secret incantations I taught them, yet you showed up and killed them all. You tell me why I imprisoned your people!”
Nie Tian fell silent.
“Because they were my legacy disciples, I took a wisp of soul essence from each of them, which were the reflections of their souls. After they died, I used a secret magic to extract some of the images they had seen right before their deaths.
“I saw you in those images.
“Originally, I didn’t know who you were, but soon afterwards, your name spread across the Domain of Heaven Python. Since you were the newest Son of the Stars, I attached special importance to you. I had people get me your portrait. At first sight, I realized that you were the one who killed my disciples, and that your name is Nie Tian!
“Your people down there mentioned your name when I captured them. I checked and confirmed their relationship with you.
“You butchered my legacy disciples, but I’m only imprisoning your people now. This is reasonable in my eyes.”
Patriarch Icy Crystal said with a cold face.
Nie Tian snorted coldly. “Those disciples of yours lurked deep under the snow and ambushed me when we were passing through that area. They were bested in battle and died. There’s nothing wrong with it.”
“There’s nothing wrong with killing them simply because they weren’t as strong as you?” Patriarch Icy Crystal asked with a gruesome, cold smile. “I’m stronger than every one of your people down there. Does that mean there’s nothing wrong with me killing them too?”
Nie Tian realized that arguing with Patriarch Icy Crystal wouldn’t get him anywhere.
After pondering in silence for a while, he asked, “What do you want?”
With a fierce look in his eyes, Patriarch Icy Crystal said, “The grand spell formation down there is called the Spirit-sealing Frozen Mountains Formation, which I created myself. As long as you can get to the very center of the spell formation and lay your hands on the ice prison where your people are imprisoned, I’ll allow you to take them with you. But if you can’t find your way to the very center of the spell formation, then you’ll have to leave of the Domain of Endless Snow empty-handed.
“You can come back and try again when you think you’re up to it.”
Jing Feiyang seemed to be angered by his demand as he said, “You’re at the Saint domain, while he’s only at the Profound realm, and doesn’t know anything about spell formations. How can he possibly solve the Spirit-sealing Frozen Mountains Formation you created? What you’re asking of him is impossible!”
“I won’t vest the Spirit-sealing Frozen Mountains Formation with my soul awareness or the power of my domain. As long as he can figure out its secrets, it’s totally possible for him to solve it.” With these words, Patriarch Icy Crystal let out a cold snort. “It’s said that each and every Son of the Stars is extremely intelligent and talented, and has been chosen by the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace out of millions. Since he’s a Son of the Stars, he has a chance at solving the spell formation.
“Besides, I’ll allow him to come a second time if he fails this time.
“Jing Feiyang, I’m giving the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace more than enough face already by demanding so little!”
With these words, Patriarch Icy Crystal flew back down to the mountain valley.
As he did, a sparkling and crystal-clear ward formed over the nearby mountains, separating the ancient starship and the grand spell formation that lay underneath it.
Then, as Jing Feiyang looked down again, all he could see was a frosty mist laced with shreds of ice, which blocked the entire mountain valley from sight.
As powerful as he was, he felt that it was impossible to see through the way it worked within a very short time.
He pondered briefly before saying to Nie Tian, “Patriarch Icy Crystal is only using the fact that you killed those people from the Heavenly Ice Sect as an excuse. His true purpose is to make you lose face. He wants people to know that you can’t solve his grand spell formation to save your people, and present you as a joke.
“Otherwise, you weren’t the only one who killed his disciples. Why would he target you, but not the others?
“He must have recognized Xie Wanting from the Water Moon Sect at first glance, but why hasn’t he marched into the Domain of Vast Darkness to find fault with her?
“Also, he knows what your status as a Son of the Stars means. He doesn’t dare to kill you, which he knows will bring calamity to the Heavenly Ice Sect.
“All he wants is to frustrate you with his grand spell formation. As long as you fail to solve it and save your people, your reputation will suffer. The sects in the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries and the Domain of Heaven Python will lose faith in you, which will make it more difficult for you to include them in your map. If you can’t straighten out the internal affairs of these two domains, the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace will question your abilities. This is his ultimate goal...”
“Also, since he’s not harming you, the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace won’t have any reason to come after him.
“From the look of it, he has thought this over, and been waiting for you to come and jump into his trap.”
However, just as he finished saying these words, Nie Tian dove towards the spell formation, exclaiming, “His spell formation won’t be a problem!”
“This is a trap!” Jing Rou shouted at the top of her lungs.
However, she failed to stop Nie Tian.
In the next moment, he shot through the sparkling ward and vanished from their sight.
“The Heavenly Ice Sect doesn’t dare to kill him,” Jing Feiyang said with a deeply worried expression. “All they want is to undermine him. If he’s stranded in the spell formation for years, he can forget about convincing the Thousandsword Mountain Sect, the Golden Vast Sect, the Pure Heaven Sect, and the Trisword Sect to follow him.
“The longer it takes him to get out, the more unfavorable it’ll be for him. Even the elders of the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace may have doubts about his abilities.
“This will greatly affect his run for the Lord of the Stars in the future.
“Someone must have talked the Heavenly Ice Sect into doing this.”
Duan Shihu smiled bitterly. “Let’s just hope he’ll be able to walk out of it soon.”
Jing Feiyang shook his head. “I doubt he will.”
Nie Tian slammed into the ground like a cannonball forged from pure steel.
His landing spot was between two snow-capped mountain peaks. The icy ground under his feet shattered from the strong impact.
He looked around, and all he could see was a sight-blocking, frosty mist.
The mist pervaded the entire area, limiting his vision to ten meters around him.
Furthermore, due to his low cultivation base, he had to consume spiritual power to fight the frigid cold within the grand spell formation.
Otherwise, the frigid qi might gradually infiltrate his body, freezing his limbs and slowing his blood flow, and eventually turning him into an ice sculpture.
Therefore, he contended against the frigid cold while moving forward at full speed.
However, the white mist ahead seemed to be endless.
Nie Tian traveled within the mist for days, but still failed to see any mountain peaks, much less the piece of ice where Fan Kai and the others were imprisoned.
“This isn’t working. I won’t be able to last much longer if I continue to consume spiritual power at such a rate.” With this thought, Nie Tian came to a stop. Brow furrowed, he pondered for a moment before channeling power from his star souls to unleash his Heaven Eyes.
As soon as his Heaven Eyes came to form, the surging frosty mist seemed to be suddenly alarmed.
The mist condensed, forming numerous strings of sparkling ice, which shot towards the Heaven Eyes from all directions.
The Heaven Eyes were instantly infiltrated by the ice strings, and frozen completely.
“Even my Heaven Eyes don’t work here?!”