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Chapter 154: Liao Cang Xiong's Crisis
Ling Xian understood an important rule of cultivation: if one does not advance, he retracts, just as paddling a boat against the current.
He embarked on this journey after 14 years of stagnation. He would never let this opportunity go to waste.
It was for this reason he immersed himself in conquering the realities of what awaited him along the path of strength. Time after time, he fell and got back up and soldiered on. The reward that awaited him at the end of this path was immense.
First, he had already reached the later stages of the foundational level.
It took him a mere 12 days to advance from intermediary to the later stages of the foundational level. This would shock even the most renowned cultivators.
Of course, Ling Xian could have never achieved such a feat by relying on his powers alone, But the Divine Book of Genesis was an incredible artifact. Even though the content of its teachings communicated knowledge purely, the book itself was created out of the complementing energies extracted from Heaven and Earth. As such, anyone who comes in contact would be touched by the same energy and experience a growth spurt.
This book successfully propelled Yue Lian Han through to the foundational level while it was in her possession.
So, it was rather normal that Ling Xian advanced at such a terrifying speed under its influence. Perhaps it was only shocking to those of the outside world.
Secondly, his level of enlightenment on the path of strength was near complete. His physical being grew exponentially stronger, now equivalent to a weapon of the Ninth-Realm.
It is worthy to note that weapons and Dans are measured on the same scale, with the Ninth-Realm being the weakest and First-Realm being the strongest and most mature.
Anyone below the foundational level could not summon weapons to their advantage. Only those who have broken through to the foundational level could perform such deeds.
Despite their limited power, a Ninth-Realm weapon was a mainstream weapon used by cultivators of the foundational level. Ling Xian’s physical state had already progressed to the point where he did not require a weapon to fight his battles.
He was a living, breathing, walking weapon.
This was the purpose of this path. It helps one boost their physical state and reduce the need for weapon use and therefore the possibility of a straying spell.
This was the precise reason that cultivators in ancient times relied so much on the maturing of their physical beings. But the demands on the body was immense and most had to seek support from Dans. It was thus not difficult to speculate why the popularity of this path diminished following the extinction of species from which Dans were formulated.
But luckily for Ling Xian, he had encountered the Divine Book of Genesis. With the knowledge acquired from this book, he could revive the glory of his ancient predecessors.
"This power is indeed without compare."
Ling Xian clenched his fist and felt his muscles tighten. His grin turned into roaring laughter.
One deadly strike on the delicate surface of the earth left a terrifying web of cracks.
"Amazing, no wonder they say the path of strength is reserved only for the mightiest. The strength of my body now has perhaps already exceeded that of a ninth-realm weapon."
Ling Xian examined the web of cracks he created and was completely stunned by the outcome. He hadn’t used an ounce of Qi. This was pure, physical strength.
This strike was at least as powerful as a weapon of the ninth realm.
"Body, Qi, soul, I must begin practicing all three together going forward, especially my physical strength." Ling Xian uttered to himself. To achieve the near-impossible dream, he couldn’t afford to pass on any opportunity for advancement. Regardless of where this path to

ok him and what obstacle he had to overcome, this needed to be done.
Not to mention he was now the owner of one part of the Divine Book of Genesis. If he didn’t pursue his physical development, this heavenly treasure would be wasted.
"Looks like you’ve already reached the introductory state."
Voice of the Untainted echoed softly through the wind, followed by the Keeper herself.
"Ten days later, finally got here. My body now has the strength equivalent to a Ninth-Realm weapon."
"Good, even though you received a lot of help from the Divine Book of Genesis, the speed of your progress is indeed remarkable." The Untainted exclaimed. She felt ever more disappointed that she was not able to convince such a gifted youth to call her Mistress.
"Thank you, your Highness." Ling Xian smiled. Aside from an incredible sense of achievement and pride, he also felt a touch of arrogance. How many throughout history had ever received such praise from the Keeper of Land and Sea herself?
"I have good news. I found the seeds. But only one has some hope of surviving. The rest have wasted away with time," said the Untainted.
"Better than none." Ling Xian was not disappointed in the slightest. With the book of creation in his possession, he was now confident that he could do this with or without the help of body-boosting supplements.
"Good, looks like you’ve not only upgraded your physical capacity but your mental capacity as well." With a gentle swing of her arm, a single green-colored seed materialized. She continued, "It’s been too long. I can’t remember which spiritual herb this is. But it must be remarkable, as it is the only one that defeated the test of time."
Ling Xian nodded in agreement. Indeed, after all these millennia and after all the others had rotted, this single seed remained fresh. Perhaps it was of the same grade as the Petals of Enlightenment.
Ling Xian was ecstatic at the thought that someone remarkable could emerge out of this single seed. He put away the seed and said, "Now that I have it, I should go buy some spiritual soil and try planting it. We’ll see what comes out."
The Untainted whispered softly. But suddenly, she remembered one more thing and called out, "Wait."
"Yes, your Highness, what do you need?" Ling Xian asked perplexedly.
"On your way, see if you can find out the whereabouts of the other four soul-healing objects. Liao Cang Xiong is not doing well. He may be in danger," The Untainted explained. This obstacle clearly stumped the otherwise ingenious woman.
Ling Xian was stunned. He asked hastily, "Master… how is he?"
"Don’t worry. There’s no point in worrying."
The Untainted sighed and continued, "He fell into a state of a coma ever since he woke me by pushing his strength passed its capacity, damaging his soul. I had expected that he would recover over time. But it didn’t occur to me sooner that he had suffered foundational damage. His condition has been worsening since yesterday. If he does not receive external assistance to heal his soul, perhaps his soul will waste away and disappear forever."
"It’s that serious?!"
Ling Xian was devastated. Liao Cang Xiong was his Master, his savior, his friend. The possibility of losing him was too painful to bear. He pondered a moment and then said, "Your Highness, other than those four soul-healing objects you described, is there nothing else?"
"I’ve done everything I could think of. Nothing has worked." The Untainted shook her head.
His heart sank. Clenching his fists, he muttered to himself incoherently, "Mount of the Healing Soul, Lake of the Resting Soul, Iron of the Setting Soul, and Wood of the Warming Soul. It looks like there’s no other option but to find them."
The Untainted watched Ling Xian, who was now worried sick and increasingly agitated and let out a soft sigh. "Correct, there is no other option. But you won’t need much. Take the Lake of the Resting Soul, a drop of the lake water can prevent his condition from worsening. A cup can wake him."
"Ok, I hear you," Ling Xian replied confidently. He silently swore, regardless of how difficult, he will return with these objects and save Liao Cang Xiong.

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