Chapter 544 - Rope In
Crane Mountain wasn't especially famous, but the view was still beautiful. It could be considered a daoist mountain range.
This place wasn't that tall, especially the mountains which should be more accurately described as hills. However, there were many boulders lying about, and a mountain spring was moving about, creating a rather peaceful scene.
There was a small daoist temple at the top of the main mountain, but it had long been abandoned.
This mountain experienced its greatest fame during the ancient era. It had once produced a deity, but even the most splendid inheritances would fall one day.
Shi Hao arrived. He observed the inscriptions made on the cliffs and experienced the various details in this place. He even found some wall carvings that left him feeling rather shocked.
There was a tree engraved on top called the Demonic Cattail Tree!
When he was in the hundred shattering mountains, he had heard legends of the Demonic Cattail Tree and learned a bit about it. During the ancient era, many divine existences had to work together to bring it down. It could even be said to be without equal.
It was shaped like a dandelion, yet it was a tree. When its white fuzz fluttered about, the holy saints withered and divine existences backed up in retreat.
"Haha, brother Shi, you came! Inviting you to our gathering really isn't easy, making us come all the way to Stone Country. If you didn't come even then, we would have gone to the imperial palace to seek your presence." Someone laughed loudly. This was precisely Bi Gu who happened to see him observing the inscriptions on the cliff. He called out loudly to Shi Hao.
His build was rather sturdy. He had dark green hair, and even his pupils were green, making him seem a bit sinister. Right now, his mood was rather good.
"Before, I mistook you for capturing Yue Chan and keeping her at your side. I want to apologize for that." Bi Gu laughed and said.
Being from the higher realms as well, he had already expressed his zeal for Yue Chan and his desire to meet her. When he hurriedly saw the woman in Shi Hao's heaven and earth pouch when they were inside the Sun God Tree's chaotic palace, he had felt some doubt inside.
"Not a problem!" Shi Hao smiled. However, he didn't know how the Heaven Mending Sect's fairy would act or what kind of expression she would show when he met her later.
Bi Gu led Shi Hao into the mountain. The amount of space Crane Mountain occupied wasn't small, and the depths of the mountain range was quite beautiful. There were a few ancient traces left behind in this place.
"The Demonic Cattail Tree fell here. There are some rumors circulating, claiming that it didn't really die, and that it was reborn as a seed. We were quite curious and decided to make a trip here," said Bi Gu.
Shi Hao was stunned. How many years ago did this happen? Even if there was a seed, it would have been discovered by others a long time ago. This place only served to provide a look into the past now.
"I never expected the Demonic Cattail Tree to be famous even in the higher realms. It really is somewhat surprising."
"No, you're mistaken. The Demonic Cattail Tree originated from the higher realms to begin with. For the sake of avoiding disaster, it decided to cripple itself and flee to the lower realms." Bi Gu shook his head and said.
Shi Hao was stunned. There was even this type of hidden information?
"That tree isn't simple. Rumor has it that it was a seed that flew out from the mysterious area." Bi Gu said.
After saying so much, there was no need to say anymore. Quite a bit could be inferred from those words alone. Those great figures would definitely be interested in the expert that emerged from that seed.
"Wu, it is actually quite difficult to kill. They all say that it fell during the ancient battle, but some believe that it was too difficult to completely destroy and that it is waiting for a chance to be reborn."
When Shi Hao heard this, he thought of a little tree that he had seen before. "Is the Demonic Cattail Tree powerful even before it fully matures?"
"When it is born, it wouldn't be too powerful. However, it will become more and more powerful. It can grow on its enemy's body and obtain all of their abilities." Bi Gu said.
Just this alone was already heaven defying. It possessed astonishing learning ability, and the longer it lived, the more ridiculous it would become. It was simply undefeatable.
"Brother Shi came." Someone greeted.
Above Crane Mountain peak, ancient trees were everywhere and clear springs ran on top of rocks. This really was a quiet and elegant place.
At this moment, the sound of a zither could be heard. It was sweet-sounding and beautiful as it blended naturally with the sounds of the movings streams. Together with the fragrance of the grass and trees, it made this place seem even more serene and harmonious.
There were quite a few people he recognized, like Lan Yu, Xuan Ming, Shui Yue, Hong Huang and others. There were a few youngsters he didn't recognize as well. The males were heroic-looking, while the females were beautiful. They were all extremely outstanding.
After some introductions, Shi Hao learned that some of them came from the higher realms as well. They didn't travel together with Bi Gu, Lan Yu, and the others and only met up again not too long ago.
There were some that were disciples from the eight regions. These individuals were all rather stunning and their backgrounds not small. For example, lady Qian Qian from the mysterious region, a buddhist monk named Zhang Six based on the western tradition, and others.
These individuals all looked over. Right now, the little Stone's reputation had truly spread everywhere. He was like a sun in the sky. Previously, he had overturned the Immortal Mountain and shaken the eight regions. Who didn't know about him? Who hadn't heard about his accomplishments?
Most of them were rather enthusiastic with intents of roping him in. They came over to chat and become friends.
However, there was a portion of individuals, even though they concealed it quite well, whose hostility was sensed by Shi Hao. His expression was calm and he didn't pay much attention to them.
"Has brother Shi thought about what he wishes to do? Are you willing to follow us through the heavenly road?" Lan Yu had a smile on her face. Her appearance was extremely beautiful. A thin mist and screen of light surrounded her body, giving her slender and moving figure a rather soft and gentle appearance.
"This place is too dear to me and I cannot let all of this go…" Shi Hao shook his head. He was going to enter the higher realms, but he didn't wish to enter with them.
"Cultivation is a process of asking one's own heart. Perhaps it is not time yet. There will be a day when brother Shi will tread on your own path and enter the higher realms to search for your true self." Someone spoke.
From what they said, the natural laws of the lower realm weren't complete and the great dao here was deficient, making it hard to realize one's true self. He couldn't make his dao perfect down here and was instead trapping himself.
Shi Hao earnestly asked for guidance, asking a bit about the circumstances of the higher realms.
This time, he finally understood why the little pagoda said that the higher realms' land was steady. He thought it was just joking, but now, he was shocked.
Based on what these people said, the great dao of the higher realms is perfect and the world was eternal. Everything was natural and steady. In other words, the lower realm was a bit 'fragile'.
One could move mountains and seas in the lower realms, but in the higher realms, they might not be able to do so.
If one from the higher realms with enough strength came down, with a wave of their palm, they could turn the highest mountains into ashes and dry up the greatest rivers.
Meanwhile, similar fighting prowess couldn't be displayed in the higher realms. When they came down to the lower realm and had these types of experiences, they were just experiencing what it felt like to possess the strength of higher cultivation realms ahead of time.
If they were to return and cultivate again, they might be able to obtain unexpected benefits, and as a result smoothly break through.
Shi Hao was speechless. He didn't know what to say.
"The higher realms is boundless. There are heavenly geniuses everywhere, and there are even other extraordinary talents. That is the place where one can truly rise to power! Brother Shi, if you continue to stay in the lower realm, it truly is like covering a pearl with dirt. When you enter the heavens, only then can you contend against against others for power and carry out a self transformation. Up there is where true opponents lie." Shui Yue said. She had bright eyes and white teeth. Silvery white clothes fluttered about around her, and her body was surrounded by faint white light, making her look holy and detached from worldliness.
Shi Hao smiled bitterly and said, "If I go to the higher realms, there'll probably be people there who will immediately think of a way to kill me."
He had overturned the Immortal Mountain before. Since even something like this was done already, if he went up, it naturally wouldn't be peaceful.
"No harm. If brother Shi enters the higher realms, just come to my Zhulu Academy." Someone spoke up, immediately expressing goodwill and reaching out to him.
The little Stone was definitely an 'extraordinary talent'. He had a unique and unmatched heavenly bone within him. If he was properly nurtured, even in the higher realms where there were endless geniuses, he would still be extraordinary.
In the higher realms, heavenly geniuses emerged in large numbers and outstanding talents often confronted each other. Even though there were many powerful individuals, they were mostly separated. The higher realm was just too big, so there was no way they would be crammed together.
With the little Stone's natural talents, once he rose to power, he would definitely be able to contend against those types of figures. Even though he came from the lower realms and suffered from an inherent weakness, the stronger and the weaker could only be determined after a battle!
For individuals like this, Zhulu Academy was naturally willing to step in and protect.
Shi Hao was stunned. He felt his heart stir restlessly and long to head up.
It was because from their tones, even people like himself would meet their match, and those opponents were all terrifying as well, to the extent where there were some who were even more heaven defying than him.
During these past few years, he always forced back his opponents. Apart from the big Stone and fairy Yue Chan, how many others could threaten or injure him? He wanted to find a true opponent and fight to his heart's content.
The higher realms was extraordinary after all. It was vast and boundless with hundreds of thousands of races. The heavenly talents of every race would confront each other, and there were even 'outstanding talents' that rose up. They were like comets that illuminated the heavens.
"Brother Shi, if you are willing to enter the higher realms, my Life Academy can guarantee your protection and allow you to quickly change," the young lady Ying Ying spoke. They had been acquainted with each other before.
The geniuses of the eight realms were inwardly shocked. These people from the higher realms were all proud and arrogant, yet they were all getting off their high horse and trying to rope in Shi Hao.
Shi Hao learned that the noble women and geniuses that invited him all came from great powers whose ancestors didn't build up an inheritance in the lower realm.
"You don't even need to think about where to go. If brother Shi comes to the higher realms, just head straight for my Scarlet Phoenix Palace. After cultivating in the lower realms for more than ten years, you need to undergo a transformation before you can complete the great dao. My Scarlet Phoenix Palace's nirvana technique is the most suitable for that," Hong Huang said.
She loudly spoke while patting Shi Hao's shoulder, appearing rather straightforward and almost a bit too bold. However, this scarlet clad young lady wasn't some simple character either.
Earlier, her relationship with Shi Hao could still be considered good. They tied some good karma in the Sun God Tree, so she naturally had the advantage in roping him in.
This made the geniuses of the eight regions speechless again. They felt rather gloomy.
"I feel that entering the Heaven Mending Sect is better. The saying that friends aren't formed without fights really is quite true." A sweet and pleasant voice sounded.
Everyone turned around. They saw a young lady that was like a sprite walk over. She wore black clothes, making her snow white skin appear even more sparkling, beautiful, and otherworldly.
There were several snow white fox tails behind her that lightly moved about. It gave her an extremely unique type of charm.
This woman was incomparably elegant and exquisite. There was a soul seizing temptation to her appearance. Her lively eyes blinked about. Her bearing and character could all be changed with just a thought.
"Witch!" Shi Hao's eyes narrowed.
Inside the pine forest, the zither sounds stopped. A white-clothed woman walked over, untainted by the world of mortals. She possessed exceptional beauty and looked like a fairy that had entered the human world.
The two women looked at each other face to face. Sparks flew from their eyes.
Everyone was silent. They really were completely opposite of each other.
Even the noble ladies and geniuses from the higher realms were inwardly shaken. It was because they all knew that these two unmatched beauties came from the higher realms and had astonishing identities that could not be offended.
"Today's gathering can include discussions regarding the dao and exchanging of pointers. However, do not take action against each other, or else the friendly atmosphere of the gathering will be ruined." Lan Yue spoke. She was also extremely beautiful, and the words she spoke were gentle and warm. Many people nodded in agreement.
"Right, you two cannot face each other with life-and-death intentions today!" Shui Yue, Hong Huang, Ying Ying and several other young ladies walked up. They were all quite beautiful, and they had smiles on their faces. The atmosphere was immediately eased.
"How could that be? We were just showing appreciation for each other." Fairy Yue Chan said with a smile that was like a bright moon, pure and divine.
"Right? Who said we were going to fight a decisive battle." The witch smiled. Her teeth were sparkling white. She waved over at Shi Hao and said, "Little Stone, why aren't you hurrying over here?"
When everyone heard this, they all revealed strange looks.
The witch said while smiling, "There was a rumor going around not too long ago that you suppressed fairy Yue Chan and kept her locked up to keep at your side. You really carried this black pot on your back for such a long time! Now that Yue Chan appeared, we can finally wash away your injustice!"
When Bi Gu heard this, he laughed and said, "Right, I almost misunderstood brother Shi. It really is shameful. I should take a drink as punishment!"
The young geniuses all laughed. They all shook their heads, feeling that the rumor was too baseless. Who could blaspheme against the high and aloof holy fairy? When Yue Chan's true body appeared, all of the rumors were shattered.
"Me and Yue Chan have always had a rival relationship and can drink together. Little Stone, even though you have fought against her, you should still drink a cup with Yue Chan." The witch said with a smile.
"The misunderstandings are cleared up, let's all drink!" Bi Gu laughed loudly. He admired fairy Yue Chan greatly; this was something many people knew.
"Fairy, I'll share this drink with you." Shi Hao smiled. With a ding sound, his cup made contact with Yue Chan's main body's cup. He had a brilliant smile on his face.
Yue Chan smiled. She raised up the jade cup and took a sip. Her bright and beautiful self remained smiling the entire time.
1. this means chase the deer literally, or fighting for power/throne metaphorically
2. this means chase the deer literally, or fighting for power/throne metaphorically