Book 36, Daolord of the Fourth Step, Chapter 25 – Knockout
Ji Ning felt a surge of excitement as he listened. His path was that of an Omega Dao as well, and he had also become a Daolord of the Fourth Step. The next step to take was that of the Daomerge. As Ning knew, for the Daomerge he would need to take every single insight he had ever gained into the first, second, third, and fourth stages of his Omega Sword Dao, and then completely transform them into a truly perfect Eternal Omega Sword Dao.
If he succeeded in the Daomerge, his Omega Sword Dao would become truly perfect to the point where it wouldn’t be affected in the slightest by the passage of time. Only a Dao such as this was qualified to be called ‘eternal’.
Thus, every single successful Daomerge would result in the new Emperor skyrocketing in power by two full levels! Second-tier Daolords would be catapulted to the Archon level of power, while supreme Daolords would rise straight to the Hegemon level of power!
There would be a similarly incredible rise in power for a successful Daomerge with the Omega Sword Dao… and the increase would be due to the power of a Dao that was truly eternal! Thus, what Ning needed to do was to create an Eternal Omega Sword Dao… and that was going to be indescribably difficult.
“That fellow Daoist died. Will I be able to succeed?” Ning asked himself. He wasn’t sure of what the answer would be.
“Omega Daos are extraordinary and unfathomable. They are truly above all other Daos and are the ultimate Daos.” The white-bearded elder looked at Ning. “You might not train in the Dao of Fire, but you can still study this Omega Dao. It might help inspire you and be of use to you, increasing your own chances at the Daomerge dramatically.”
Ning clenched the jade scroll, sending his godsense into it. There were certain barriers within it, forcing him to swear a lifeblood oath not to transmit it to others in order to study it.
Ning immediately swore the oath. Instantly, a large amount of information flooded into his mind as the jade scroll in Ning’s hands transformed into bits of dust.
It was unspeakably profound. This was the Dao of Fire, but visualized to the utmost apex. It included every single type of fire possible, including blazing flames, icy flames, negative-energy flames, explosive flames… all types of flames could be controlled by it.
The Daolord who created this ‘Omega Fire Dao’ was capable of releasing flames that were truly terrifying.
“He truly was the embodiment of fire, the master of all flames,” Ning sighed in amazement. It made sense. When he created his Omega Sword Dao, there was an instant resonance with the prime essence of the sword. In that instant, he immediately understood that he was now the master of the Dao of the Sword. As for the deceased creator of the Omega Fire Dao, he was most likely the master of the Dao of Fire.
When the white-haired elder saw Ning open his eyes, the dler said in a icy voice, “You have already passed the first two trials. Only one more remains before you, and if you can survive it you won’t face any more danger. In addition… you will earn something which is far more valuable than even the Omega Dao you were just shown!”
“Far more valuable?” Ning’s eyes lit up. Something that was far more valuable than an Omega Dao… what could it be? What had the master of the Azureflower Estate prepared?
“This reward will naturally be the most valuable thing within the entire estate. My master would’ve have wasted all this time and effort for just the Omega Dao of a single Daolord of the Fourth Step,” the white-haired elder said coldly. “However… not just anyone is worthy of the true treasure. You must pass the third trial first. If you die in the attempt, you can only blame yourself and your own uselessness. Alright. Time to go in.”
“Alright.” Ning nodded, then stepped into the palace.
From the outside, the palace had been blocked by an invisible screen of energy that prevented him from seeing anything inside it. As soon as he stepped inside, everything became clearly visible. He saw that the great palace had a total of sixteen giant golden pillars within it, with a royal throne located at the highest part of the palace.
Ning turned his gaze to glance at the two figures seated in the lotus position at the edges of the palace. One figure was a figure dressed in long violet robes and who emanated an aura of incredible power that was comparable to that of Hegemon Brightshore or Hegemon Windrain! The other had a significantly weaker aura and was dressed in black robes. He was thin and had long, slender eyes that were brimming with cold malice.
“Hm?” The two figures simultaneously opened their eyes.
“A Daolord?” The violet-robed man glanced sideways. “How boring. It is time for you to go to work, disciple.”
“Don’t worry, Master.” The skinny black-robed man narrowed his eyes as he looked at Ning, cold malice flashing within them. “I’ll definitely take ‘good care’ of this young Daolord.”
Ning frowned slightly. He could sense that the black-robed man was brimming with murderous intentions.
The white-haired old man had walked in alongside Ning. The old man now said in a cold voice, “You are a Daolord, and so your opponent shall be someone who has reached a level of power comparable to the Archon-level Eternal Emperors of your Flamedragon Realmverse! All you need to do is defeat him by knocking him out of the palace, and you’ll have succeeded.”
“Knock an Archon out of the palace?” Ning was rather surprised. This trial wasn’t too hard for him, but it was almost impossibly hard for a Daolord.
“Do you feel this is difficult?” The white-haired elder said coldly, “If you were an Emperor, you would have to defeat the Hegemon and knock the Hegemon out of the palace in order to win. These two, master and disciple, are limited in their movements because they aren’t able to leave the palace. If you can force them out, then the formations will activate and slay them.”
“So you are telling me that if I succeed in passing through the third stage, the guardian will definitely die.” Ning was secretly stunned at how ruthless the master of the Azureflower Estate was. If Ning was an Emperor, he would’ve had to defeat the Hegemon by knocking the Hegemon out of the palace? Not even a true Hegemon would necessarily be able to succeed! Only one of the more elite Hegemons would be able to accomplish it. The Flamedragon Realmverse only had three Hegemons to begin with!
As for a Daolord capable of knocking out an Archon of the Sacred Cities? That meant the Archon had to either train in an Omega Dao or have reached an extremely high level in a technique similar to the [Heartsword] art. Only then would they be capable of such ludicrous levels of power. How many monstrous Daolords of that level had the Flamedragon Realmverse ever even given birth to?
“This trial is ridiculous,” Ning muttered silently to himself.
“If you aren’t a truly peerless and azzling figure, you are not worthy of challenging the third trial. Not even average Hegemons are worthy,” the white-haired elder said coldly. “Alright. Time to begin.”
“Heh heh heh…” The black-robed man slowly sauntered forwards, not disguising his murderous intent in the slightest as he let out an odd laugh. “Daolord boy, if you must blame someone, blame the master of this estate for his callousness. I once enjoyed a wonderful, carefree life roaming through the outside world, killing whoever I pleased. No one dared to stand in my way! Now, I’ve been forced to stay within this estate forever… but don’t worry. I won’t kill you too quickly. I’ll let you die a slow, agonizing death. I’ll take my time enjoying a delicate little morsel like yourself.” The black-robed man’s eyes were filled with excitement.
Ning stretched out both hands, causing two Northbow swords to fly out of the sheath and into his grasp. He was an incredibly talented Daolord who had reached the fourth stage of his Omega Sword Dao, and he also had his [Heartsword] art. Even if he had to fight the Hegemon, Ning was certain he would be able to leave this place safely.
“Kill.” The black-robed man made his move. Whoosh! A long black serpentine shadow appeared in the skies, moving with ghostly speed as it instantly charged towards Ning.
Boom! Ning casually tossed out one of his swords. Sword-light flew outwards like a surging tsunami, slamming into the black serpentine shadow with overwhelming and crushing power. The shadow was instantly destroyed, revealing the figure of the black-robed man within it. The man was wielding a long saber in a two-handed grip, and the blow smashed him into the ground with a loud boom.
The earth trembled violently. Only after a moment passed was the black-robed man able to rise to his feet.
“Another golem-body?” Ning shook his head. His opponent was no longer a true cultivator.
“Y-you…” The black-robed man stared at Ning in shock.
Boom! Boom! Ning continued to swing his Darknorth swords, sending one blow after another towards his opponent. His opponent wasn’t able to dodge the attacks at all and was sent flying repeatedly by Ning! After a mere five strikes, Ning was able to send his foe flying out of the palace gates.
“No…!” The black-robed man let out a terrified scream. The power of Ning’s strike was simply too great, and he was sent flying backwards while completely unable to control his body.
In the instant that he flew out of the palace gates, a blurry golden light suddenly appeared at the gates and brushed past his body. The black-robed man’s aura instantly vanished, his body separating into multiple different components that were whisked away by the golden light, which they vanished as well.
“He died.” The violet-robed Hegemon within the hall watched as his disciple died, a hint of sorrow in his eyes.
He had once been an exalted Hegemon, a man of great glory and honor. He had an entire host of Emperors serving him, and no one had ever dared to oppose him!
But then the master of the estate had shown up. The Hegemon had been captured with nothing more than the wave of a hand. It was as easy as capturing a little baby chicken! He and his disciple had then been transformed into golem-like creatures who would forever stay here and obey the orders they had been given. Now, his disciple had died… and even the final remnants of his soul and truesoul had vanished.
“When will it become my turn?” the violet-robed Hegemon mused. A fierce light flashed through his eyes. “I won’t make it easy. I’m a Hegemon, and I’ve been training here for many years. I’m much more powerful now than when I was first captured. And… the master of the estate promised that I would have a chance to regain my freedom in the future.” The violet-robed man looked at the distant white-robed Ning. “Given how powerful this Daolord is… perhaps he is the hope which was promised to all of us captured Emperors?”
Ning had easily passed through all three trials. This stunned the white-robed elder.
“I passed the third trial, right?” Ning glanced at the white-robed elder.
“You passed.” The white-robed elder nodded. “Follow me, then.”