Chapter 153: Unstoppable Growth
Inside the Painting of the Nine Immortals, the Keeper of Land and Sea stood like a timeless statue. But a closer look revealed a hint of unease under the watchful eye of Ling Xian.
"Don’t look at me like that. To tell you the truth, this has something to with me, but whether or not I was responsible for it, that I do not know." The Untainted raised an eyebrow. Ling Xian couldn’t tell if she was angry or embarrassed.
"Eh? You were involved?"
Even though he had more or less guessed it, it was still surprising to hear an admission of guilt from the Keeper herself. He asked hastily, "Your Highness, please tell me everything."
"There’s not much to say. I was on the path of strength. Once, I encountered a bottleneck. To break through, I traveled far and wide, plucking every strength-boosting species I could find. Perhaps, that’s the reason for their extinction." The Untainted sighed softly. She spent her life fighting for the survival of humanity. Her achievements could be compared to those of the Founding Fathers of all humanity.
But her encounter with the bottleneck of training resulted in the extinction of many species used to create spiritual Dans that boosted mortal strength. She was now living with the guilt of knowing that even though she wasn’t personally accountable for their extinction, she was responsible for starting it.
"One could never imagine the person who started it all was the Keeper of Land and Sea." Ling Xian didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. But he wasn’t angry. Yes, it was an unfortunate turn of events. But no one dared to accuse the Keeper of Land and Sea of exterminating entire species.
"Too bad, I’m in possession of such treasure as the Divine Book of Genesis, yet I can’t use it to improve my strength."
The Untainted shook her head slowly and said, "You underestimate the book."
Ling Xian beamed with excitement. From the sound of her response, there was a chance.
The path of strength was one of the most challenging but rewarding paths reserved only for the mightiest. Similarly, Ling Xian has always been fascinated with the practice of the flesh.
"Correct, the Divine Book of Genesis is an incredible artifact that propels the cultivator who possesses it to the end of the path with relative ease. Even without the assistance of the spiritual Dans, one can still follow the path to completion, albeit the journey won’t be as easy." The Untainted smiled slyly and continued, "If memory serves me right, I may have a few spare seeds of these extinct species."
"This is real?"
Ling Xian was elated. Having seeds was much more useful than having the species of herbs. He could regrow them. Together with guidance from the book, conquering the path of strength now seemed completely within the realm of possibility.
"Correct, before my mortal body disintegrated, I gathered some valuables and kept them inside the Painting of the Nine Immortals. But who knows that after so many years, how many of them still remain here." As she spoke, the Untainted began to drift away. She disappeared before the echo of her voice trailed off.
"Stay here and focus on your meditation. I’ll go see if I can find the seeds."
Ling Xian beamed at these last words as he watched the white shadow drift away. Even if the Untainted couldn’t find the seeds, he still had the book to guide and enlighten him.
A bright path littered in gold appeared in front of him.
"Focus on enlightening yourself."
Ling Xian said with a smile. He sat back down with his legs crossed and reined in his focus. He read every symbol that crossed his mind with utmost care.
Once again, thunderous waves of colorful clouds and golden lotuses flared up all around the universe. Ancient symbols flooded his mind, glowing in the dark as if dying to inject him with knowledge.
Not far from him,
the little Purple Dwarf felt the commotion and opened her eyes curiously. She flew over and circled around him, loosening her petals as she flapped her wings and joined the magnificent aura that already surrounded him.
The Petals of Enlightenment added the extra boost that Ling Xian needed to absorb the knowledge faster. Inside his mind, the symbols shone brighter and gradually morphed into an image.
It was an image of a tall, frightening man, his feet rooted firmly into the earth, and his head was gently gracing the clouds. Black hair fell loosely around his shoulders. The air he breathed reeked of terror.
Then, suddenly, he threw an earth shattering punch towards the sky.
This pure physical movement unleashed a disturbing cloud of darkness. In the next instant, the sky shattered as if it had turned into a mirror. A giant crack slowly crept from one end of the universe to the other.
This man… such terrifying powers!
Ling Xian watched this impossible scene unfold. He understood very well this scene portrayed the single moment of creation. But this knowledge did not take anything away from the profound impact of witnessing it for the first time.
Perhaps one day, he could replicate such an achievement!
One blow to shatter Heaven and Earth and create a world out of nothing!
The last stop on the journey of cultivation!
However, just as Ling Xian was examining the image in detail, his eyebrows suddenly cringed, and he spat out a mouthful of blood. Ling Xian subsequently fell out of the Territory of the Path of Enlightenment.
Ling Xian’s current level of enlightenment was not enough to be granted visibility into such an image. By setting his eyes on it, he had already defied the laws of nature. When he attempted to fix his eyes upon it, of course, he would be violently rejected from the realm.
When this book was in Yue Lian Han’s possession, she never got to witness the same image. Evidently, her level of enlightenment was far below that of Ling Xian.
But Ling Xian could see the image. This was a testament to his talent, his strength, and his promise. Sooner or later, he will reach the top and rule the world from the top of the nine Heavens.
"You… are you alright?"
The Purple Dwarf panicked as she saw Ling Xian vomit blood. She flew over hastily, her face filled with concern.
"I’m fine, don’t worry."
Ling Xian smiled. His face was as white as a ghost, but he wasn’t seriously injured. He was more enlightened by the scenes he just witnessed, scenes that also solidified his confidence that this was the path that would lead him to greatness.
He recollected himself and reentered the Territory of the Path of Enlightenment. The terrifying scene reappeared.
The giant man threw another blow that again shattered the clear sky. Ling Xian spat out another gulp of blood. But without a moment's hesitation, he dove back into the Golden Pages and lost himself in the teachings along the path of strength.
In the next ten days, Ling Xian held his focus and fell ever deeper into the pool of knowledge. He would occasionally vomit blood as the forces expelled him from entry. But each day, his eyes grew brighter as he became increasingly more enlightened.
From the first day when he could only hold on for a second before falling out of the Territory, he had now extended this hold tenfold. Every second represented exponential growth of his physical being, which grew stronger as the days went on.
Ling Xian finally opened his eyes at the sound of yet another earth shattering blow. Two streams of golden laser beams shot out of his eyes the moment they opened. As he stood, an incredible energy rushed out of his pores and expanded into the surrounding air without skipping a single beat.