Nie Tian was consumed with deriving enlightenment, and completely forgot about time.
The ancient starship from the Water Moon Sect was berthed in one of the dead realms in the Domain of Flame’s End, which had lost every last bit of its flame power many years ago. Jing Feiyang gazed up into the starry river. Looking somewhat worried, he said, “It’s been eight days, and Nie Tian still hasn’t rejoined us.”
The Void domain Water Moon Sect experts walked out of their cabins to scan the charred ground.
This realm had been full of life force, but the Divine Flame’s arrival had reduced it to a realm in ruins, without any sign of living creatures or vegetation.
The more they examined this realm, the more apprehensive they were about the Divine Flame’s devastating might.
Xie Wanting seemed worried as well as she said, “Father, Nie Tian will be fine, right? That Divine Flame can easily destroy realms. If it wants to do something to Nie Tian...”
“You seem to care a lot about Nie Tian, don’t you, big sister?” Xie Yunhai said playfully.
Xie Wanting shot him a stern look. After he shut his mouth, she turned to look at Xie Qian again, and concern filled her eyes.
They were in a place rather far from Jing Feiyang and the others. If Jing Feiyang didn’t eavesdrop purposely, he wouldn’t be able to overhear their conversation.
Xie Qian laughed and said, “Nie Tian seems to be a good kid, Wanting.”
Xie Wanting flushed slightly. “Even you’re making fun of me? There’s nothing between Nie Tian and I. We’re just friends. Besides, Yin Yanan from the Beast-controlling Sect once told me that Nie Tian already has a fiancee in the Domain of the Falling Stars. On top of that, he has questionable relationships with Yin Yanan and Mu Biqiong, the Holy Daughter of the Bliss Mountain Sect.”
Xie Qian smiled. “The Domain of the Falling Stars, the Beast-controlling Sect, and the Bliss Mountain Sect... How can those girls be compared to my daughter? If you do like that Nie Tian, I can help make a match between you two. Our sect ranks in the top among all the sects in the surrounding domains. If he wants to marry you, your marriage will bind our sect with him, this rising star, which will benefit us all.
“Also, this is a matter that’s better done early than late.
“Now, since he’s a newborn Son of the Stars, and his cultivation base is still low, we have a good chance. But if we wait till he enters the Void domain or even the Saint domain to propose this marriage, he might not value us as much by then.”
Xie Yunhai laughed heartily. “I actually think it’ll be great if Nie Tian becomes my brother-in-law. Big sister, you’ve lived your whole life in the Domain of Vast Darkness, but you haven’t had your eyes on anyone. Nie Tian is the only man you’ve ever spoken highly of. You couldn’t stop praising him after our trip to the Shatter Battlefield.
“But you didn’t mention a thing about Huang Jinnan, the Divine Son of the metal element sect of the Five Elements Sect.”
As the father and son exchanged words, Xie Wanting, who was bashful by nature, flushed even more, and told them to stop.
At the same time, she called a name softly in her heart. “Nie Tian...”
Jing Feiyang flew over and came to a stop in front of Xie Qian. “Brother Xie, we’ve already waited here for eight whole days. If Nie Tian’s communication with the Divine Flame was a success, he should have finished and rejoined us here as we agreed. Now that he still hasn’t shown up, I’m worried that something might have happened. I think we’d better head back to take a look.”
After a moment of pondering, Xie Qian nodded. “Okay.”
Immediately afterwards, they arranged for the others to stay put, then the two of them unleashed their Saint domain power, shooting into the endless starry river.
In just a few hours, the two of them arrived in the realm where Nie Tian was.
With a single glance at Nie Tian, Xie Qian let out a soft exclamation. “Hmm?! He seems to be deriving enlightenment from some very profound knowledge, as I’m sensing a very subtle aura from him.”
Jing Feiyang was also shocked by the aura Nie Tian was exuding. Eyes narrowed, he examined him carefully.
As Nie Tian derived enlightenment from what he had learned from the Divine Flame, a special aura came to form within him.
Not every cultivator was able to sense such an aura. Only Saint domain experts like Xie Qian and Jing Feiyang could pick up its faint clues.
Brow furrowed, Jing Feiyang said in a low voice, “The Divine Flame is not here. Did he get to communicate with it?”
“He has the Divine Flame’s faint aura on him,” Xie Qian said with an intense expression. “Besides, even as he’s deriving enlightenment, he’s quietly channeling a small amount of dissociative flame power from the starry river. You should know that it’s very difficult to capture flame power from the starry river, where all kinds of energies and impurities mix together.
“Only powerful Ancientbeasts like the Heaven Flame Beast, flame dragon, vermilion bird, and flame qilin can collect flame power in the starry river and refine it into themselves.
“Considering Nie Tian’s cultivation base and strength, he should have been far from being powerful enough to gain such an ability.”
After hearing these words, Jing Feiyang’s eyes lit up as he asked, “Are you saying that he’s already gained something from that cluster of Divine Flame?”
Xie Qian nodded. “Evidently.”
Even Jing Feiyang felt somewhat envious as he said, “The kid has such incredibly good luck.”
“Let’s leave him alone,” Xie Qian said very cautiously. “While we wait, we can also try to analyze the special aura he’s exuding. Perhaps we can even pick up something useful.”
An intrigued expression appeared on Jing Feiyang’s face.
Afterwards, the two of them sat in midair in a location far from Nie Tian’s ancient starship. They sensed Nie Tian’s aura with rapt attention, while he derived enlightenment regarding the profound way that heaven and earth changed, domains and realms formed and perished, and the birth of different species. Their expressions flickered with astonishment from time to time.
Every time they exchanged a glance, they could see shock and disbelief in each other’s eyes.
Apparently, what they gleaned from Nie Tian’s aura was of great help to them.
Normally speaking, it was very unlikely that a Saint domain expert would gain anything helpful from someone whose cultivation base was as low as Nie Tian’s.
However, Nie Tian wasn’t just anyone.
What Nie Tian was mulling over now were all incredibly profound subjects.
As long as they could pick up a tiny bit of information and apply it to their own cultivation, they would benefit greatly from it, which could be reflected in their mastery of incantations and domains, and mental readiness.
Time flew. Five days passed.
Nie Tian ended his meditation and rose to his feet on his ancient starship. As soon as he did, Xie Qian and Jing Feiyang opened their eyes simultaneously.
Their bright, torch-like gazes instantly converged on him as they asked at the same time, “What on earth did you receive from that cluster of Divine Flame?”
“It gave me a flame spark, which fused into my flame power core right away, in exchange for three drops of my Blood Essence...” Nie Tian went on and explained everything to them, raising a series of questions in their hearts.
“It was the Divine Flame that first discovered the Domain of Flame’s End?! It fused the realms with its flame sparks. While they turned the realms into fiery realms, they grew more powerful themselves. In the end, the Divine Flame came back and reclaimed them? This is how the Divine Flame cultivates?”
“Your Blood Essence helped it form its own flesh aura, and vested it with the potential to become a living creature with flesh and blood?!”
“The flame spark it gave you improved the speed at which you channel power from Heavenflame Crystals tenfold? And it’s even helping you derive enlightenment from flame power incantations?!”
Nie Tian nodded as the two of them took turns to ask questions. The flabbergasted look never faded from their faces.
Only after a long time did the two of them finish asking questions. Then, as they looked at Nie Tian, their expressions became incomparably complicated.
Xie Qian found it hard to calm himself. Panting somewhat heavily, he marveled, “I can’t believe your bloodline actually contains the profound truths of life power, and that your Blood Essence can actually create brand new lives. This is completely unheard of! Admittedly, there are all kinds of mysterious bloodlines in this universe, but I’d never expect there to be a bloodline that can vest lifeless treasures with flesh and blood.”
“Nie Tian, did the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace tell you anything about the origin of your bloodline?” Jing Feiyang asked with wide eyes.
Nie Tian shook his head. “No, the grand elder just took a drop of my Blood Essence, and then told me to wait outside the grand hall. Later, he just issued the order to assign the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries and the Domain of Heaven Python to me. He didn’t say anything to me at all...”
“Perhaps the grand elder of the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace has already learned the origin of your bloodline, but for some reason, he couldn’t say anything to you.” Xie Qian suspected.
The three of them talked as they started the ancient starship.
After rejoining the others, Xie Qian expressed his intent to escort Nie Tian to the Domain of Heaven Python to travel around with his children, instead of returning to the Domain of Vast Darkness.
Therefore, the two ancient starships sailed directly towards the Domain of Heaven Python.
They didn’t encounter a single Hunter on their way back, not members of the Bloody Despair Brotherhood nor the White Rose’s people.
The journey back lasted months. Nie Tian practiced cultivation day and night. That was when he discovered that, for some reason, the speed at which he channeled different kinds of power had all improved significantly.
As his flame power, wood power, and star power sub-souls derived enlightenment from their respective incantations, many points that had been obscure and hard to understand before suddenly seemed clear and straightforward.
Thanks to this, his cultivation progressed at a speed he had never expected.
By the time the two ancient starships left the Domain of Flame’s End and entered the Domain of Heaven Python, he came to a breakthrough in cultivation without meeting any obstacles.
“The middle Profound realm!”