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A very strong defensive measurement was put up around Meng Fortress. It was so heavily fortified that even Wu Qi found it tough to handle.

Qu Ping had taken the lead in Meng Fortress, and he had personally modified the place's defensive and warning system using countless mountain ghosts and stray deities. They stood shoulder to shoulder and back to back, forming an enormous sphere that wrapped around the entire Meng Fortress.

When faced with an absolutely shameless defense such as this, Wu Qi could only utter bootless cries. Even with his current cultivation base, even with the miraculous escape arts that he had mastered, there was no way he could penetrate the bodies of these ghosts and deities without being noticed by anyone. Though in the later part of Scroll of Stealing, there were some magical escape arts that could allow him to achieve that, but those were not techniques he could use right now.

The sulky Wu Qi hated the feeling of being trapped inside a cage by someone. Thus, after informing Lu Chengfeng, he simply moved out to stay on a mountain peak outside Meng Fortress, which was controlled by the Heaven Breaking Sword Sect. At least, the restrictive measurements in the woods guarded by the Heaven Breaking Sword Sect could not stop him from entering and leaving freely.

After the failure on the eve of complete success that happened during the daytime, being forced to set Ying Zheng free, under the distress call of both Yan Dan and Qu Ping, all the important ministers of Great Chu and Great Yan had gathered together, discussing how to cope with the aftermath and deal with Ying Zheng's retaliation. Although both dynasties did not fear Great Qin's army and practitioners, Huhai's divine ability of Myriad Constellation of Earth Fiends was something that they found very hard to defend against effectively. Once he managed to strike, the people and all living things within an area of millions upon millions of miles in circumference would be plunged into an abyss of misery, and both dynasties would suffer a very serious casualty.



They had to come out with a complete solution to the threat. Therefore, Yan Dan and Qu Ping had summoned all their important ministers, gathering them in a meeting for intense discussion to premeditate various solutions. As the level of important ministers who participated in the secret meeting was overly prestigious, Wu Qi did not qualify to participate in it, and so he did not have the opportunity to submit the books that he robbed from Zhang Yi. Wu Qi had become more and more cautious nowadays. An important loot such as the cultivation techniques of Great Qin's generals, unless he could hand them personally to Yan Dan and let him record it as his merit, he would rather let them rot in his storage ring than submit them via someone else's hands.

Since Lu Buwei could plant his disciples among the captains of Qin army, what about Great Yan? Wu Qi did not want to take any risks.

Standing on the summit of the mountain, Wu Qi looked down at the countless mountain ghosts and stray deities that hovered above Meng Fortress, and could not help but have his lips twitched. Then, he exercised the Mystic Eyes of Universe, and he could see countless ghosts and deities under the ground as well in his line of sight, forming a very strict line of defense. Often, these ghosts and deities would move back and forth, emanating spirit energies of Yin deity that towered into the sky, distracting the gentle moonlight and causing it to ripple violently. The dimmed twilight of the moon filled the mountain woods with swaying and blinking shadows, making everything look like a dream.

Voices of chatting and laughing could be heard coming from the surroundings, from the disciples of Heaven Breaking Sword Sect who were on the night watch. During the battles that happened in these few days, no one from Heaven Breaking Sword Sect was sent to the front line. As Ying Zheng was severely wounded today, Qin army would not launch an assault for a rather long period of time. As a result, the intense battle situation had suddenly loosened up, and thus, these disciples could have a relaxed mood to laugh and chat together.

While Wu Qi was looking around, he suddenly saw the front gate of Meng Fortress swung open from inside at a distance of tens of miles away. Then, Yuji, clad in a bright red robe which made her look like a ball of raging flame, walked gracefully out from the fortress, escorted by a troop of armored soldiers. She waved her hand and summoned a cloud over to her, stepped onto it, and flew southward towards a mountain forest. Wu Qi pondered for a brief moment, then abruptly transformed into a sheet of green mist and fused into the surrounding woods, pursuing behind at lightning speed.

She was the first woman he had sex with, and Wu Qi could not accept that she treated him with that kind of an attitude. Now that the war had come to a temporary halt, and he had some spare time in hands, Wu Qi decided that he would look for her and demand an explanation, to find out what exactly was her intention in doing that. Why would she give up the innate energy essence she cultivated with her cultivation technique? Xiang Yu was her lover, so why she did not want to give him this energy essence? What was the reason behind her decision?

With the nourishment from this innate energy essence, perhaps Xiang Yu would be able to escape the calamity of turning himself into a fiend, and perhaps he could even step into the realm of Heaven Immortal straightaway! Yet, she had chosen to have sex with Wu Qi, giving up the innate energy essence for nothing. If not for Wu Qi cultivating a rare innate cultivation technique, this thread of innate energy essence would have been completely wasted.

The Celestial Technique of Goddess Xuan cultivated by Yuji was a magical and unfathomable technique. Not only did it give her a fleshly body that could not be hurt by any blades or swords, fearless against damage from water or fire, the speed of her flying with a cloud was also incredibly fast. The troop of armored soldiers that escorted her consisted of about one thousand men. Jade runes were flashing and blinking under their feet, which were divine talismans that could increase flying speed. But even though they were aided by these talismans, and their cultivation base was fairly strong as well, after several tens of miles into flying, the distance between them and Yuji had become very great. In just a blink of an eye, they could no longer catch up with her.

Despite how these armored soldiers kept burning their blood essence to increase their speed, hearts torn with anxiety, as Yuji's flying speed was just too incredibly fast, there was no way they could catch up with her.

Indeed, the speed of Yuji's escape beam was shockingly fast, as Wu Qi too could not catch up with her using the innate escape art of wood element. The Celestial Technique of Goddess Xuan was a very profound art of Dao inherited from the time of great antiquity, while Yuji's cultivation base was much greater than his, as she was already an expert who had stepped into the realm of Nascent Divinity. Thus, after several tens of miles into the flying, she had outdistanced Wu Qi.

Fortunately, there were almost endless mystic techniques that could be found in the Scroll of Stealing. Wu Qi gritted his teeth and made up his mind, as he simply exercised the mystic technique of blood-burning, a technique which usually could only be used when trying to escape from a desperate situation. With that, his speed was increased by ten times, and made him barely catch up with Yuji's cloud. While sensing his blood essences being quickly burned off within his body, Wu Qi felt like weeping but had no tears. During daytime, in order to lure Ying Zheng into the trap, he was severely beaten and had his body covered with cuts and bruises. Worst of all, he had not yet received the rewards promised by Yan Dan and Qu Ping. And now, he had to burn his blood essence just so he could continue to pursue behind Yuji in this middle of the night. It sure was a toilsome day for him.

If not for the fact that the Chariot of Eight Horses looked overly grand and magnificent, and would attract many eyeballs during the middle of the night, Wu Qi really wished he could ride it instead of flying himself.

The pursuit continued. After traveling laboriously for over several tens of thousands of miles, when Wu Qi became so weary that he was nearly coughing blood, Yuji's cloud suddenly halted in the sky, and turned into the side of a lofty mountain. There was a troop of several thousand elite soldiers stationed at the very feet of the mountain, banners embroidered with the character of 'Xiang' seen waving among them. Then, there was a huge cave entrance halfway up the mountain, and a vast amount of blood red energy filled with immense killing intent was bursting out from it.

Wu Qi stopped and panted for a while outside the cave, swallowed a few drops of flood dragon blood essence to replenish the consumption of his own blood essence, and also two Demon Cores to replenish his energy. Only then did he carefully exercise the innate escape art of earth element and cautiously sneaked into the cave.

The insides of the cave were heavily guarded as well. Elites from Xiang Clan could be found keeping guard everywhere, from the entrance to the very depths of the cave. These elites were clad in heavy armors, bodies shrouding with rolling and rocking fiend energies. They were many times stronger than those elite soldiers stationed at the feet of the mountain. Basically, each of these elites had formed their own fiend energy pearls, and they were all cultivators with cultivation base comparable to ordinary Nascent Soul cultivators.

Wu Qi sneaked through the long passage for a while stealthily, and very soon, he had already come to the end of the cave. There, he found a cavern, about one mile in circumference, with a large man-made hole located right at the center of it. It was filled with a huge amount of blood essence of demon beasts, which emanated a pungent smell of blood that filled the entire cavern. Xiang Yu, whose burly body had fully recovered, was seen standing right inside the blood pool, with the level of the blood reaching just right below his eyes. Countless tiny whirlpools had formed in the blood pool, while the surrounding natural energies kept being sucked into them, then gradually injecting into Xiang Yu's body.

The Banner of Chiyou was hovering right above his head. On the faces of the banner were countless fierce and savage celestial fiends, who seemed to be waving their weapons and issuing soundless cries.

Xiang Ta, Xiang Zhuang, and a group of several dozens of men, each having a burly body and looking very strong, were standing right beside the blood pool. An old man with elegant bearing, seeming to be in his fifties and having a delicate facial feature, was sitting on a boulder next to the pool, casting a cold glance over at Yuji, who came walking in gracefully.

Obviously, Xiang Ta and all the other younger people here were headed by this old man, as when they saw Yuji, each of them nearly had flames bursting out of their eyes, and Xiang Zhuang, the man with the hottest temper, even had his palm pressed onto the hilt of his sword. But, as the old man did not say a word, none of them made any noise, and none of them made any move.

The old man did not move, the people of Xiang Clan did not move, and soaking in the blood pool, Xiang Yu did not move either.

Clad in a long blood red dress, Yuji walked beside the blood pool slowly. When she saw Xiang Yu, who only had his eyes revealed while the rest of his body was soaking in the thick bloody pool, she suddenly laughed coldly and said, "Do you hate me, or are you holding a grudge against me? Or perhaps, you just wish to kill me?"

The old man cleared his throat, and was about to say something, but suddenly, Xiang Yu's deep and powerful voice rang out, "Second Father, please bring them out from here. I have an explanation to hear from Yuji."

The old man, the Second Father who Xiang Yu held a great respect for, Fan Zeng, frowned. But before he could say anything, Xiang Yu continued saying, "Just leave us here. I'm no longer as impulsive as I used to be." After a moment of silence, Fan Zeng rose slowly to his feet and left the cavern without saying anything. Xiang Ta, Xiang Zhuang, and all the other men threw an angry glance over at Yuji as they snorted coldly and heavily a few times. Only then did they follow Fan Zeng and leave the cavern.

Yuji gave Fan Zeng and the people of Xiang Clan a look while smiling as they left, then slowly sat down on the boulder which Fan Zeng was sitting on just now. "It has been ages since I saw you, and the people of Xian Clan have become stronger now." said Yuji with a soft voice, "There are many people that I don't recognize... Are they your people who came from the Great Chu, after learning that you're severely wounded?"

Xiang Yu looked at Yuji and said with a deep voice, "Yes! They are the new members of Xiang Clan who were born during recent years. They are my younger brothers and nephews."

Yuji giggled and said, "I thought they are your sons and grandsons."

After a moment of silence, Xiang Yu said coolly, "I do not have any offspring yet, and I do not have any concubine or legal wife. Since you committed suicide at Gaixia [1] many years ago, I've..."

Xiang Yu did not say anything again, neither did Yuji, while Wu Qi, hiding deep under the ground, knitted his brows into a tight frown. He kept telling himself that there was a deep enmity between him and Xiang Yu. However, he felt he was really innocent in this, and that was a fact!

After a full fifteen minutes, Yuji finally chuckled. With a flip of her palm, a little bronze bottle that was about one foot tall appeared in her grip, fully filled with blood that took a pale purple hue. The blood emanated a very strong and peculiar fragrance, while an incredibly enormous fiend energy kept rolling out from inside the bottle. Looking at Xiang Yu, she said coolly, "You were first told that I was raped by someone, then I told you it is me who seduced that little boy Wu Qi. With that, you were overwhelmed with shame and rage, heart-broken, and then you were beaten half-dead by someone. After going through all these sufferings, I suppose the Immortality Technique of Chiyou of yours should have formed you a Fiend Core, right? And your Nascent Divinity has also transformed into an innate fiend soul, right? Also, your body should have forcibly transformed into an undead fiend body by the Banner of Chiyou! Have all of them succeeded?!"

In a low, muffled voice, Xiang Yu said, "Yes."

Yuji pointed at the little bottle with her finger and said, "Then, fuse this blood essence into your body. It is the last drop of the sacred blood of the True Fiend, Chiyou, that still exists under the heaven. After fusing it, you'll be able to truly begin the cultivation of Immortality Technique of Chiyou."

Xiang Yu did not move even a muscle as he asked with a deep voice, "You... you purposely upset me, drove me to experience a dramatic change in my temperament, so that I can match perfectly with the characteristic of a fiend?"

Yuji casually tossed the little bronze bottle into the blood pool, then faintly sighed and said, "Maybe yes, maybe no... I've no clue either..."

She gave Xiang Yu a deep look, sighed again and said, "We've not seen each other for over two thousand years."

Suddenly, Xiang Yu's loud roar filled the entire cavern, "You are my woman! That filthy little thief, I swear I'll hunt and kill him, even if it will cost my life!"

A massive amount of blood boiled and surged up from the pool, wrapped around Yuji and pulled her into the pool.

Under the ground, Wu Qi's eyes shone with cold gleams. Without making a sound, he unleashed the innate gold element silver lotus.

[1] Gaixia - A place in China, in present-day Lingbi County of Anhui. The Battle of Gaixia was fought in 202 BC during the Chu–Han Contention between the forces of Liu Bang and Xiang Yu. The battle concluded with victory for Liu Bang, who proclaimed himself Emperor of China and founded the Han Dynasty. (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Gaixia)

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