Chapter 822: Passing Three Stages in a Row
Jiang Chen continued onwards and paid a bit of attention to his surroundings, but still didn't see any of the great clan disciples around him. "I suppose this entire Peafowl Lotus Pond is a big formation in itself, and is a formation that contains many little formations inside that isolates all participants."
Jiang Chen had done quite a bit of research into formations, so it was only natural that he managed to glimpse a little into Peafowl Lotus Pond's true nature. While moving forwards, he suddenly heard a rumble at the front. He looked to the horizon, and was surprised to find that the water surface to the front had actually parted to make a path through the center. The tides on two sides were at least several hundred feet tall, and they looked like two walls of water that had sealed up the passage. He could see countless whirlpools spinning circles at the center of the passage. Moreover, the water walls would sometimes fire rays of rainbow light that were obviously very powerful. Jiang Chen rubbed his nose. Am I supposed to pass through this passage to clear this stage?
He observed the passage for a moment and found that the whirlpools sat very close to each other. A simple misstep or a tiny loss of control might mean that he would dragged into the whirlpools. These whirlpools were a kind of a test. The dense rays of rainbow light shooting out from the water walls were one as well. If he was accidentally clipped by one of the rainbow lights, then he might be swept away immediately by the whirlpools at the bottom.
Jiang Chen might not know the exact rules, but he was sure that being swept away by the whirlpools would mean failure. He had no intentions of leaving at such a sour note.
After observing the passage for a moment, he came to the conclusion that there wasn't a regular pattern behind these whirlpools. Still, he now know that he should be able to deal with these whirlpools with relative confidence. The problem was that the rainbow light beams were even more irregular. Their speed were irregular, and a pattern was non-existent. The only thing he could do here was to dodge on instinct. Yes, the speed of these light beams were travelling faster than the eye could see. Therefore, he could only rely on his instincts as a cultivator.
Thankfully, Jiang Chen's instincts weren't weak. Hesitating no longer, Jiang Chen urged the lotus leaf and threw himself into the passage immediately.The second he entered the passage, he immediately sensed that the surrounding whirlpools were pressing against him constantly. Although Jiang Chen had avoided them carefully enough that he wasn't being pulled into them, the strength of the whirlpools still affected his path. Consequently, it also affected his movement speed.
He knew that this stage wasn't easy, but he was a bold man with the skills to match. Although his speed was decreased by the whirlpools, he hadn't slowed down too much as he circled around them constantly. He knew very well that those rainbow lights would land him in great trouble if he were to fly too slowly. Therefore, he must control both speed and rhythm properly. He had to control it so that he would neither be hit by the rainbow lights or be swept away by the whirlpools at the bottom.
The passage was extremely long. Although Jiang Chen had been traveling for almost an hour already, he felt like that there was no end in sight. He looked a little surprised, "Why did this second stage suddenly become so much harder?"
Everyone was seated around Emperor Peafowl, but no one was in the mood to taste the delicious wine atop the table right now. Their minds were on the Peafowl Lotus Pond. Unfortunately, no one could see what was happening inside.
Emperor Peafowl was the only one who was still wearing a calm and unfathomable smile. He had already received the Cloud Monarch's report when Jiang Chen passed through the first stage. As it turns out, the first person to pass through was actually Jiang Chen. Emperor Peafowl wasn't surprised in the least. He immediately notified the Cloud Monarch in secret to increase the difficulty of Jiang Chen's second stage by 50%. Under wraps, Jiang Chen had no idea that that his second stage was 0.5 times more difficult than other participants.
The rainbow light continued to fire wildly, and their speed and rate of fire was increasing continuously. Even Jiang Chen was starting to find the test strenuous. This stage was supposed to be testing a half-step emperor realm genius, but Jiang Chen was only at fifth level sage realm right now. Moreover, his test was fifty percent harder than others! Therefore, one could say that the difficulty of his test was almost the equivalent of an early stage emperor realm cultivator's test. It was no wonder that he was feeling stressed. Suddenly, an idea popped into his mind. He recalled an item.
Happy at the sudden flash of inspiration, he took out the Featherflight Mirror and used it at the same time the light rays were firing towards him. The moment Featherflight Mirror was used, the rainbow lights' speed immediately decreased by half. Overjoyed, Jiang Chen immediately sped up and flew through the passage like hot knife through butter.
With the aid of Featherflight Mirror, Jiang Chen was able to pass through the remaining distance at relative ease. He broke through many obstacles again and again, and finally, there was a white flash that caused both water walls to collapse abruptly.
Rumble! As the water churned like a rumbling earthquake, Jiang Chen finally exited the second stage and arrived at a calm water region. He relaxed and put away the Featherflight Mirror. "This stage was seriously difficult. If I hadn't used the Featherflight Mirror, even I can't tell if I could've survived the last stretch. In fact, this last stretch in particular was really ridiculously difficult. Can those clan descendants really pass this stage?"
Jiang Chen was doubtful of their chances. It wasn't that he was looking down on the others, but realistically speaking, even a half-step emperor realm cultivator like young master Ji San only had at best a thirty percent chance of making it through that stage. As for the rest, Jiang Chen couldn't see even a sliver of hope for them to make it through.
Jiang Chen continued forwards after passing through the second stage. "Your Majesty, Pill King Zhen is still the first person to make it through the second stage," The Cloud Monarch's voice resounded.
"Oh? Didn't you increase the difficulty of his stage?" Emperor Peafowl replied by message.
"I did, but he used some sort of unknown method later on and was able to travel even faster during the second half of the test." Not even the observing Cloud Monarch could see what was happening inside the formation. His responsibility was to supervise the test from outside the formation only. Therefore, even he had no idea exactly what method Jiang Chen used to speed through the second half of the test even faster than before.
After all, the second half of the test was even more difficult than the first half, not to mention that Jiang Chen's difficulty was intentionally increased by 50% compared to other participants. But he'd still been able to pass through the second stage first. Now this was a little unusual.
"This kid really is interesting," Emperor Peafowl thought for a moment and smiled, "Do refrain from upping the difficulty again during the third stage. It's true that geniuses must be tempered, but it isn't right to interfere too much either."
"Understood," the Cloud Monarch responded.
Jiang Chen very quickly ran into the third stage. In fact, there were no prior signs at all. Roars just started resounding from all across the water as water monsters charged out of the underground. These water monsters were actually all living creatures living beneath Peafowl Lotus Pond. Moreover, every one of these living beings looked incredibly sinister and brutal. Every one of them possessed the strength of a human sky sage realm cultivator, and the strong ones were actually possessed the strength of a human half-step emperor realm cultivator.
Jiang Chen actually counted a total of nine water beasts in the water. In addition, the position of these nine water monsters were so meticulously planned and logically arranged that one could even see a hint of formation dao from it. Jiang Chen would be attacked no matter where he went he chose to enter the water. In fact, he might even be attacked en masse.
Do I have to use Featherflight Mirror again? While he might be capable enough to deal with these monsters in the norm, there was no telling what might happen beneath the water. Jiang Chen wasn't willing to waste time on them either. Plus, the test only requested that he pass through the stage, not take down all these monsters.
Jiang Chen was just about to use Featherflight Mirror when a yell suddenly resounded in his mind. "Idiot, what's there to be afraid of mere water monsters? Do you think that the dragon crystals I gave you are just for sure?"
The voice came suddenly, but Jiang Chen was overjoyed to hear it. The dragon crystals! It was the gift Long Xianxuan gave him after he made a breakthrough. They contained a tremendous amount of dragon aura in them. What was there to be afraid of mere water monsters if the dragon aura was deployed?
Jiang Chen was overjoyed, and he sent Long Xiaoxuan a message. "Brother Long, we can save the crystals. Why don't you unleash the aura yourself? It'll be stronger, and they'll get the hint and out of the way faster."
Long Xiaoxuan let out a quiet humph, but didn't answer. Jiang Chen knew the dragon very well. The fact that he hadn't declined meant that he agreed to the proposal. Jiang Chen immediately chuckled and urged the lotus leaf to speed up towards the front instead of slowing. It was at this moment Long Xiaoxuan abruptly unleashed his stunning dragon aura and focused it around Jiang Chen's body. A moment later, Jiang Chen's body was filled with the divine aura of a dragon race. He almost felt like an ancient divine dragon himself. The dragon race's aura was no trifling matter. It wasn't only used to intimidate enemies. A dragon's aura also contained an extremely powerful consciousness attack that greatly intimidated most living beings. Most importantly, all living beings that were touched by dragon's aura would be frightened out of their wits and have their souls crumble. However, these water monsters were all quite powerful. Although they were stunned by the dragon's might, they didn't perish immediately to the attack. Still, there was no hiding the fear and anxiety in their eyes in this one instant.
This one instant of hesitation was enough for Jiang Chen to slip through an opening. Even if he had passed through the stage, the leftover presence of dragon's aura still caused the nine water monsters to roar non-stop in a low tone above the water surface. There was reluctance and anger behind the roars, but fear was the most prominent emotion of them all. Even these water monsters couldn't control their instinctive fear towards the might of an ancient dragon. They could only watch Jiang Chen leave and do nothing about it. Contrary to his expectations of a difficult battle, Jiang Chen never thought that he would be able to go through this third stage like he was going for a walk.
"Brother Long, the dragon's race divine aura is truly impressive," Jiang Chen praised. Long Xiaoxuan humphed and mumbled something indiscernible, but Jiang Chen could absolutely sense that he was feeling pleased about himself. It was true that the dragon had helped him to pass through the third stage with ease, and in doing so stunned the wits out of the formation observer, the Cloud Monarch.
"Your… Your Majesty." The Cloud Monarch was starting to feel that his brain wasn't catching up to reality, "That… That Pill King Zhen has passed the third stage."
"What did you say?" Even Emperor Peafowl was more than a little shocked this time as well. Jiang Chen had just passed through the second stage, but now had gotten through the third stage too? Could it be that the third stage hadn't activated for some reason?