Book 30, Ancient Cultivator, Chapter 31 –The Ancient Ancestor
Ji Ning laughed. When he had been at Skywood City and encountered Daolord Kongsan, the latter had dimensionally locked the area with a formation, making it impossible Ning to escape; his only option would’ve been to use his vessel to slowly fly around inside! But now? His sword-arts surpassed the limits of space and were able to forcibly rip out dimensional passageways, allowing him to easily escape. Only someone who had reached an extremely high level in the Dao of Space would be able to restrict Ning’s movements.
The vast majority of Eternal Emperors would not be able to bar Ning’s path. This was a true life-preserving method he now had!
Kongsan was able to transform into darkness incarnate, a virtually invulnerable form. This was his own life-preserving method which ensured that even the likes of Palace Lord Dawnstar would be unable to do anything to him.
Ji Ning would be able to use his swords to transcend space, making it so that dimensional shackling would be unable to bind him. He would also be able to tear through space and flee at a moment’s notice. This was a life-preserving method that was every bit a match for Kongsan’s.
There were very few figures even amongst exceptionally powerful second-tier Daolords like Ning and Kongsan who had such incredible life-preserving methods. The Ninedust Sectlord, for example, didn’t have any such technique.
However, the most supreme of Daolords such as Dawnstar or Skyaxe, the ones who stood at the very precipice of power, all had Daos of such incredible power that they had life-preserving abilities similar to that of spatial transcendence.
This was why they were all generally extremely difficult to kill. However, a Hegemon would probably be able to wipe them out with the wave of a hand. Perhaps some of the freakishly powerful ancient figures such as the lords of the eight Sacred Cities, second only to the Hegemons in power and who Hegemons wouldn’t necessarily be able to kill, might be able to slay the supreme Daolords. These figures were far more powerful than even Emperor Mirrorsnow.
However, Hegemons and near-Hegemons were incredibly rare and exalted figures. The three Hegemons belonged to the Brightshore Kingdom, the Aberrant special lifeforms, and the Ancient cultivators. These three were the rulers and sovereigns their entire race. As for the near-Hegemons, they were amongst the most powerful figures each race or organization had. For now, Ning wasn’t at a level where he could get embroiled into fights with them.
“Don’t feel jealous of me. Once you become a Daolord of the Fourth Step, I’m sure you’ll have access to a formidable protective ability of your own,” Ning said. The Ninedust Sectlord had merged two Supreme Daos together, which meant that when he became a Daolord of the Fourth Step he would instantly become one of the most powerful Daolords around. None of those Daolords would be easy to deal with.
“True.” The Ninedust Sectlord nodded. “I’m not too far away from breaking through to the fourth step anyhow. With just a few more insights, I’ll be able to break through my bottleneck and reach the final step. By then, my mastery over water will easily allow me to gain an ‘undying waterform body’.
Ning chuckled and nodded.
An ‘undying waterform body’ was a fairly common technique amongst those who had reached an extremely high level in the Dao of Water. This was a technique that was much stronger than Kongsan’s ability to dissolve into darkness incarnate. Kongsan had only comprehended a single Supreme Dao, after all; his ‘darkness incarnate’ form was simply not flawless enough.
“By then, I can just stand there and let you hit me without fighting back, but you still won’t be able to injure me,” the Ninedust Sectlord boasted smugly.
“Oh.” Ning mumbled mentally to himself, you know, I’m actually just a Daolord of the Second Step…
The Ninedust Sectlord had mastered his Ripplewater secret art, while Ning had now evolved his lifeblood weapons. Both had benefited significantly from this adventure.
“Let’s go.” Ning stood atop the surface of the shattered planet. “The only thing of value here was the core, but harvesting it is too difficult.”
“It really is, but you made a killing off of it…” The Ninedust Sectlord chuckled as he scanned his surroundings, then pointed to the source of the rainbow light. “Let’s move over there. The rainbow light is denser over there; that should be the direction from which the ancient power launched the strike.”
“Yes, let’s go take a look.”
The two immediately flew off the planet and towards the rainbow light. They flew several hundred kilometers alongside the light stream, moving towards the source. Both of them were quite curious; this was an ancestral site of the Ancient cultivators. Who could’ve been able to destroy a planet such as this? Most likely, only a Hegemon-level figure or someone close to that level of power.
Swish! They traversed through space and reached the end of the rainbow light.
“What’s that?” Ning and the Ninedust Sectlord stared in amazement at the cluster of stone passageways ahead of them. The stone passageways were brimming with flame demons, but the streak of rainbow light flew straight through the stone passageways… and the place it flew through was an absolutely enormous straight passageway that was at least two billion kilometers wide! Based on the other nearby tunnels, it could be ascertained that the ‘rainbow passageway’ was actually once filled with countless stone passageways that had been completely destroyed.
“How terrifying,” the Ninedust Sectlord murmured. “A single strike blasted through countless stone passageways, forming a single enormous one in their stead… and then, after being weakened due to having gone through so many passageways, continued through to blast apart that planet! It had to have been a Hegemon.”
“I agree that only a Hegemon could’ve done such a thing,” Ning concurred.
This level of power was incredible. Both of them had learned for themselves how tough the stone passageways were, but someone had been able to blast through two billion kilometers worth of stone then shatter that planet with a single strike. This level of power was beyond their imagination. As they saw it, only the nigh-omnipotent Hegemons could’ve done such a thing.
“This place must really be that legendary place…” Waves of shock and awe began to fill the Ninedust Sectlord’s heart as he grew certain of his guess.
“Come, Ninedust. Let’s go through and see what lies on the other end of the rainbow passageway,” Ning said.
“Agreed.” The Ninedust Sectlord nodded. The two then flew into the rainbow passageway.
The rainbow passageway was brimming with remnant power. There was simply no way to avoid it, and so both used their secret arts to resist as best possible. After being ablated by their secret arts, the remnant power no longer posed a threat to them at all when it washed over their divine bodies.
The rainbow passageway was two billion kilometers wide and so long that they couldn’t see to the end of it. The two followed the rainbow light, forging a pathway forwards. The closer they moved to the source, the stronger the layers of power became. However, they were both able to hold; for now, they had yet to reach their limits.
The Ninedust Sectlord sent mentally, “If we were pulled into a fight, I’d only be able to unleash around 20% of my full power right now. This is absolutely terrifying. The remnant power from a single strike that was unleashed countless aeons ago is still able to suppress me to such an extent!”
“I’ve been whittled down to a fraction of my full power as well,” Ning said. He had the Hegemon’s armor, allowing him to endure the damage, but the fact that the remnant energy was so omnipresent meant that he would at most be able to pull out 30%-40% of his true power when using sword-arts.
They continued to fly forwards.
“Is that an entrance up ahead?” Ning was rather puzzled. The rainbow light lowered visibility, but he could vaguely see that the end was up ahead.
“It does look like that.” The Ninedust Sectlord gripped his longstaff and sent mentally, “Be careful, Darknorth. Let’s not lose our lives at the very end of this journey.”
“Agreed.” Ning manifested three heads and six arms and wielded his six Northbow swords with great caution.
Swoosh! Swoosh! There really was an exit a the end of the rainbow tunnel. When they simultaneously flew through the tunnel, they suddenly felt their bodies expanding dramatically in size. Ten thousand times, a million times, a billion times…
“What’s going on?!” Both of them felt perplexed and they simultaneously turned to look backwards. They saw a hole directly behind them; this was the hole they had just flown out of. As they had rapidly increased in size, the hole had shrank in comparison.
“T-t-that’s…” Both of them were stupefied. Behind them they saw a towering, pitch-black humanoid figure lying on the ground. The figure was 540,000 meters tall, and a hole that was just a few meters wide could be seen over his chest. Clearly, the hole had punctured straight through his chest and into his body.
As for Ning and the Ninedust Sectlord, they had just flown out of this humanoid creature’s chest wound.
The two landed on the ground. They stared at the fallen, towering giant figure with astonished gazes. “W-w-we were actually inside its body this entire time?” Ning could hardly believe it.
“Those countless stone passageways we went through were just part of its body? Those flame demons and earth devils, and that powerful planet? They were all just part of its body as well?” The Ninedust Sectlord couldn’t believe it either.
A grain of sand, an entire world.
This humanoid creature looked like it was ‘merely’ 540,000 meters tall, but within its body was an endlessly vast space that gave birth to flame demons, earth devils, and even mortal lifeforms! This was truly unbelievable.
“I don’t think it was an actual living being. Actual living beings should have divine power and Immortal energy within their bodies, but it only had those endless stone passageways,” the Ninedust Sectlord said.
“It doesn’t seem to be a cultivator.” Ning nodded in agreement.
They then began to carefully inspect their surroundings. This was an enormous cave they were in, and they were in just one corner of it. The two began to walk through the cave and inspect it.
“Look over there.” Ning pointed off into the distance, a stunned look on his face. Far away there were two figures who could be seen. One was a white-robed figure who lay on the ground, completely unmoving. The other was seated in the lotus position, a peaceful look on his face. Both of these enormous figures emanated auras of incredible might, the might of a Hegemon. Ning had seen three Hegemon corpses in the Genesis Lands of the alternate universe, and now he had found two more here in this cave.
“Is that…” The Ninedust Sectlord stared at the two figures, his gaze quickly focusing on the man seated peacefully in the lotus position. The Ninedust Sectlord’s body trembled slightly as he murmured, “An ancestor. That’s one of the ancestors…”