“Who did it?!” the old man howled. “Who dared to take my Ice-Soul God-Sword? That sword was locked in countless layers of ice. Only a Legendary could possibly reach it. Wait. Don’t tell me some expert Legendary found out about the sword and stole it! How could that be possible, though? There aren’t any Legendaries around here.”
The man seemed to be on the verge of going crazy as he sent out true energy to cover the island with frigid cold. Instantly, the peach trees all began to wither up, and the island transformed from a place of beauty into one of chaos and disorder.
“Calm down, Patriarch Frost-Drake,” said one of the men behind him, a burly Lifeseizer in black armor. “Perhaps the spirit energy just transformed naturally, and the Ice-Soul God-Sword is still down there. Let’s join forces and bolster you with our true energy. Then you can just reach down and try to fish the sword out from the spring. As you know, Young Master Shroud-Heaven from the Hanging Mountain has come down to gather energy arts experts of all sorts into the Shroud-Heaven Alliance. We East Sea cultivators are relying on you to subjugate the Ice-Soul God-Sword and then reach the Legendary level. If you do, we can become one of the most important members of the Shroud-Heaven Alliance, and hopefully, gain the favor of the Hanging Mountain.”
‘Shroud-Heaven Alliance? The Hanging Mountain?’ Yang Qi thought as he eavesdropped via true energy. Of course, he was hidden so expertly that not even the white-robed Patriarch Frost-Drake noticed him.
And thanks to what he had already overheard, he was fairly certain he knew what was going on.
Out in the sea, there were many experts of various levels who had never established their own sects, or if they had, were too inconsequential to consider important. People such as that were often referred to as rogue cultivators.
If they ever joined forces, they would be considered quite powerful.
Apparently, someone named Young Master Shroud-Heaven was trying to unite all of the rogue cultivators from the four seas and form them into some sort of alliance.
And this Patriarch Frost-Drake was the leader of one of many smaller groups who were hoping to find the Ice-Soul God-Sword, fuse with it to become a Legendary, and then become a powerful force within the Shroud-Heaven Alliance.
Yang Qi could tell that he cultivated frost-type energy arts that perfectly corresponded with the Ice-Soul God-Sword. If he acquired that sword, he would definitely advance by leaps and bounds, and would have a strong chance of reaching the Legendary level.
Normally speaking, the Cosmic Sunflare Sword that Yang Qi cultivated would be as compatible with the Ice-Soul God-Sword as oil was with water. After all, despite having certain elements of yin and yang that were complementary, the oppositional aspects were far more powerful.
Thankfully, he had his Strength of the Hell-Crushing Godmammoth and its Hellfire Crucible to forcibly combine them.
‘The Hanging Mountain, huh,’ he thought, heart pounding. ‘I need to keep listening and see if I can get any information about my mother.’ Right now, his two main ambitions in life were to crush Yun Hailan beneath his feet, and to get to the Hanging Mountain to find his mother.
In response to his subordinate’s words, Patriarch Frost-Drake calmed down a bit.
“A thousand years ago,” he said, “the Legendary Guru Ice-Soul himself practiced cultivation on this island, right by this apex cold wave spring. Thirty thousand meters beneath the mouth of the spring was a mysterious kingdom of ice, which was exactly where Guru Ice-Soul used his understanding of the magical laws of the void to seal the Ice-Soul God-Sword. There, he refined it day and night in his attempt to transform it into a Legendary-level weapon. Unfortunately, Guru Ice-Soul eventually experienced cultivation deviation, and went missing. Presumably, he died. As for the weapon, it remained sealed here ever since. I learned of the matter well over a hundred years ago, and ever since, have been trying to think of a way to drag that sword out into the open. Sadly, I never succeeded. However, now that the Shroud-Heaven Alliance has been formed, I need to try again. Hopefully, if we combine all of our energy arts to create a spell formation, we can suppress the cold wave and drag up the sword. If we succeed, then all of the spirit medicines, treasures, and wealth that I have accumulated back on Frost-Drake Island will be yours for the taking.”
“Of course,” said one of the accompanying Lifeseizers. “You’re the backbone of our group, Patriarch, so we’ll do whatever you say.”
Including Patriarch Frost-Drake, there were a total of eight people present.
And the group of them held nothing back as they joined forces next to the spring to set up a huge spell formation. The group of them roared at the tops of their lungs as manifestations of Humanoid True Energy took shape above all their heads, which then combined into a sphere of energy that shot into Patriarch Frost-Drake.
He shivered, then unleashed a stream of frigid true energy that shot into the depths of the spring.
Before long, his face fell, overtaken by a look of first disappointment, then despair.
“You animal! You bastard! I worked myself to the bone for that Ice-Soul God-Sword! I planned for a hundred years! I sacrificed everything. And it was all in vain. Why? If I ever find out who dared to take that sword, I’ll kill him. I’ll wipe him off the face of the earth!”
His true energy surged with such power that the other seven individuals coughed up blood and suffered vital energy injuries.
‘So, someone did take it.’ The entire group exchanged awkward glances as Patriarch Frost-Drake howled in fury.
“Come on,” one of them said. “Let’s get out of here and give the patriarch a chance to calm down.”
Worried that the crazed patriarch might vent his anger on them in deadly fashion, the others nodded in response to the suggestion. As they flew up into the air, one of them called out, “Patriarch Frost-Drake, take some time to clear your head. Who knows, maybe some miracle will happen, and everything will turn out fine. Well, we don’t want to disturb you any further, sir, so we’ll take our leave.”
Without any hesitation, the entire group fled.
Meanwhile, Patriarch Frost-Drake’s eyes were completely bloodshot, and he looked like he was about to go crazy and kill everyone in sight. However, inside, he was still in possession of his faculties. Waves of frigid true energy rolled out from him, covering the area, freezing the sea for dozens of kilometers in every direction, and turning the island into a virtual iceberg.
All of a sudden, cracks appeared on the surface of the frozen water.
“Who’s there!?” Patriarch Frost-Drake blurted, spinning as he looked around. Although he had been venting a bit, his energy arts and cultivation base were roughly on the same level as Holy Daughter Manyflowers’, so how could he not sense the energy fluctuations from moments ago?
A projection of Humanoid True Energy appeared on the island, which caused the ice to crumble around it as it walked forward, and the frigid energy to melt. It was like a spring breeze surrounded it, its aura warm, its facial features that of Yang Qi.
“Who are you…?” Patriarch Frost-Drake asked. Although he could sense that this person’s cultivation level wasn’t necessarily very high, his energy arts were profound, and he was definitely not the type of person to look down upon.
“Is this the sword you were looking for, Patriarch Frost-Drake?”
Yang Qi reached out, and a dark green sword shot out and began to swirl around him.
“The Ice-Soul God-Sword!” Patriarch Frost-Drake’s eyes suddenly glittered with hope. Apparently, it was a person who was weaker than him who had acquired the sword, which meant that perhaps things weren’t as bad as he thought. Clearing his throat, he said, “So, you little punk, you were the one who dared to take the Ice-Soul God-Sword.”
Yang Qi nodded. “That’s right. It was me. It was a real shock to find a sword like this in what seemed like a quiet, ordinary island.”
Licking his lips, Patriarch Frost-Drake said, “Well, in that case, brat, I order you to give me that sword. If you don’t, I’ll have to kill you.”
Already, he was circulating his true energy as if in preparation for an attack. Now that the sword he desired was in sight, there was no way he would just let it go. It represented all of his hopes to reach the Legendary level, and was just too important.
“You want to kill me?” Yang Qi said. He laughed. “Think this through for a second, Frost-Drake. Considering that I subjugated this sword, don’t you think I could do the same to you? Are you really planning to attack me? Listen. Take some advice from me. After all the work you went through to reach Nonary Lifeseizing, don’t do something stupid. The reason I’m confronting you right here and now is that I want information about the Shroud-Heaven Alliance. Tell me its background. And where does this Young Master Shroud-Heaven stand in relation to the Hanging Mountain as a whole? Tell me everything you know about the Shroud-Heaven Alliance and the Hanging Mountain.”
Seemingly very confident, Patriarch Frost-Drake said, “Are you crazy, brat? You must be from some aristocratic clan, right? Or maybe from a big sect? Presumably you have some treasure that let you control the Ice-Soul God-Sword. There’s no other explanation for how you managed to pull it up from that mysterious kingdom of ice thirty-thousand meters down. You think you can threaten me? What a joke! I’ll give you two choices. One: give me the sword. Two: die. I’ll let you pick between life and death.”
Eyes turning icy, Yang Qi said, “You fool. You think that because it looks like I have a Quinary Lifeseizing cultivation base you can beat me? Well, I guess I have no choice but to force you to tell me about the Shroud-Heaven Alliance.”
With that, he waved his hand.
The Cosmic Sunflare Sword technique swirled out, shining brightly, joined by the Ice-Soul God-Sword. They combined, like two dancing dragons, forming the fire and ice taiji symbol which shot toward Patriarch Frost-Drake in deadly fashion.
As it turned out, Yang Qi was very eager to use this fire and ice taiji symbol on Patriarch Frost-Drake, to see exactly how effective it would be.
There could be no better test subject for it than a Nonary Lifeseizer.
Besides, if he captured him, he could probably get plenty of information about the Shroud-Heaven Alliance, a group that Yang Qi had never heard of before. After all, if Nonary Lifeseizers were itching to join it, then it must be powerful.
As soon as the fire and ice taiji symbol appeared, an incredible aura spread out over the island, filling the area with the ultimate expressions of both yin and yang. Everything twisted and distorted in dangerous and painful fashion.
Patriarch Frost-Drake felt himself being wrung into a , causing his meridians and sea of energy to twinge with pain.