When Bai Yunfei returned to the Ye, he had returned promptly to his room and was prepared to think about the next step in dealing with the Zhao–he was determined to help them overcome this moment of crisis wholeheartedly, but he had to do so without any room for mistake. Otherwise, the Ye would be harmed in the process.
“If I can’t break apart this stalemate, then the Ye will never get over this crisis. Right now the Liu were pulled into this matter, but although they haven’t offered any help so far, the Zhao will still feel quite troubled by this move. My display of strength should be more than enough to cause some sort of intimidation effect, but that’ll only stall for time. If I can have the Liu and the Ye unite and have the Wood School intervene, then this problem is as good as solved. However, there’s a chance that the Zhao will refuse to back down and will try to try and subjugate the Ye as soon as possible. With the Beast Taming School acting as their support, even a Soul Ancestor would be enough to bring the Ye down a notch.
“But even if the Zhao moves to do that, it’ll be within my expectations. If worst comes to worst, I’ll have to use senior You’s influence to ask for help from the Liu. I don’t want to stay in Gaoyi City for too long, so the sooner this is resolved, the better….If a battle is really needed, then I wonder if my strength would be enough to do battle with a Soul Ancestor. With my killing moves the Ninefold Thrust and the Flame Winged Daggers, a Soul Exalt would be able to easily overcome those. But a Soul Sprite should meet their match against me. If I fight against a Soul Ancestor, I’ll need to be able to test their strength to see how well I can do.”
Battling against a beast tamer from the Beast Taming School was essentially battling against a soulbeast itself. A soulbeast without rationale nor fear. One would have to avoid the soulbeast to strike at the tamer. This logic was something that everyone knew as common sense, but it was not an easy thing to accomplish. The Beast Taming School did not become one of the strongest schools in the world for no reason after all. A true expert beast tamer could protect themselves extraordinarily well with their soulbeast puppets being controlled as easily as they would their arms. Without defeating their soulbeasts first, defeating the tamer would be extremely difficult.
Out of all the strongest beast tamers he had fought, the strongest one had been a Late-stage Soul Sprite at the very strongest. He had been able to go through them all like a hot knife through butter with the stat-increasing equipment he had, but if he were to go against a true expert, victory would not be as easy.
“Soulbeasts….I’ve only seen a few of them myself, and the only ‘actual’ soulbeasts were Xiao Tang and Xiao Bai. The rest were all puppets….The Beast Taming School really is a disgusting school. Brother Hong Yin said that the people of that school should just go and die. I don’t really have any actual grudges with them, but those beast tamers I killed before–I don’t feel sorry. I might have been left with no other options, but still….”
“I’ve changed….but since when? Did I change when I was being chased out of the Beiyan province? Or when being chased by the Glacial School? Was it with the destruction of the Blackwood Stronghold? Or was it when uncle Wu died for my sake? Maybe even earlier?” For seemingly no reason, Bai Yunfei had immediately back to half a year before he received the Upgrade technique and became a soul cultivator. It had been that moment that kicked off the most complicated part of his nineteen years of living.
But Bai Yunfei had not regretted a single action that he had done. Compared to the muddleheaded struggle for survival from before, he was truly living in every sense of the word now.
“It doesn’t matter what changed or if I changed. As long as I keep my convictions! Uncle said to have a ‘clear conscience’, and mother said to ‘live freely’. This is my conviction!”
With his mind in a buzz, Bai Yunfei felt at the broken pendant to help clear aways his thoughts and open his eyes in determination.
After another moment of consideration, Bai Yunfei took out the space ring that contained all of the soulbeast puppets he had taken from the beast tamers. Using his soul sense, he began to inspect the soulbeasts inside one by one. “When will I be able to have my own soulbeast partner? When I get enough strength….I have to go to the soulbeast forest!”
“Eh? This is….” When his hand had touched the space ring holding the Thunderbird, he had been startled–that was because he was beginning to sense a response of soulforce from within! A soulbeast puppet of a beast tamer would only give off a response when the beast tamer ordered it. But the owner of the Thunderbird had died a long time ago, meaning that….
Giving it a detailed look, Bai Yunfei the seemingly sleeping Thunderbird was just slightly giving off a weakened pulse of soulforce. With the following of Bai Yunfei’s soulsense, the soulforce of the Thunderbird had fluctuated a slight amount as if it was responding to Bai Yunfei.
Running out of his room, Bai Yunfei ran out to the open enclosure of the courtyard and gave the space ring a single shake. With a flash of purple light, the Thunderbird appeared right in front of him.
There had been a stronger amount of soulforce than previously sensed. Since he was even closer to it know, Bai Yunfei had actually felt a suffocating pressure–an Early-stage Fifth-class Thunderbird was on the same level of an Early-stage Soul Ancestor.
“What’s going on? Eh? Its eyes….” Bai Yunfei stared suspiciously at the Thunderbird for a brief moment before coming to the realization that the eyes of the Thunderbird were a faint purple color!
Although it was expressionless and had not a single emotion to be felt, the Thunderbird looked as if it was in a state of ‘imbecility’.
“But how? The soulbeast of a beast tamer should have crimson eyes and be more like a wooden statue, shouldn’t they?” Bai Yunfei thought with furrowed eyebrows. Still skeptical, he shook his hand twice to bring out the other two soulbeasts–and as he expected–they were both crimson-eyed.
“So what caused this abnormality? Perhaps…” Bai Yunfei tried to remember what made this soulbeast in particular so special. Aside from the fact that it was a higher grade soulbeast, there was also a….“’self-detonation’? Was it because of that time it nearly self-destructed?” Bai Yunfei questioned. Because of the frantic nature of the time, Bai Yunfei could only remember that the energy within the Thunderbird at the time had been berserk. Other than that, he hadn’t really paid attention to any other attractive force or soulforce that could cause a change. There hadn’t been anything else he found during his cleaning up of the battlefield, and even up to now, there was nothing.
Circling around the Thunderbird several times, Bai Yunfei held his hand out to prod it. From there, he couldn’t sense any reaction of soulforce or any other peculiarities that would peg it as different from the other soulbeast puppets. This had caused Bai Yunfei, who had been expecting that something else would happen to feel rather disappointed.
But just as he was about to call this experiment a failure and pack away the Thunderbird, something else had happened–he couldn’t call it back into the space ring!
It had clearly been in the space ring before. But right now, he was unable to recall it. This had caused Bai Yunfei to be astonished. Trying several times more without success, Bai Yunfei look at the ring and the Thunderbird blankly.
“Really…what’s going on?”
Thinking for a moment, Bai Yunfei placed both hands onto the body of the Thunderbird and probed inside with his soulsense.
Just a few minutes later, the previously quiet courtyard had immediately erupted with two tremendous bursts of soulforce. One had been red, the other had been purple in color as it enveloped both Thunderbird and Bai Yunfei in a mixture of color and energy.
The doors to the left of the courtyard blew open as Jing Mingfeng came charging out. Sweeping his eyes around, they quickly landed upon the middle where the scene was taking place, causing him to pause in amazement.
“That’s a…a soul contract!”