Four figures appeared in the air above the deep gorge within the Oldjade mountain range. The leader was a golden-robed man with a single horn, whose gaze was as cold as icy water. Behind him stood three other figures; a bald, black-robed man named Celestial Immortal Blackrain, a golden-haired woman named Celestial Immortal Goldcloud, and Celestial Immortal Arcanum.
The three mighty Celestial Immortals were all obediently following behind this individual.
“Who is that horned man?”
“Isn’t that Patriarch Arcanum? Why is Patriarch Arcanum following behind that man so respectfully? The two who are standing next to Patriarch Arcanum are also acting with great respect, and their auras seem to be very great as well; they should also be at the Celestial Immortal level.”
The Loose Immortals of the Youngflame clan, hidden away and watching from within their distant formations, were all rather dazed.
They had just seen five Celestial Immortals appear. And now…they saw four more!
They recognized Patriarch Arcanum; he had an extremely exalted status within the Youngflame clan, and generally speaking they would be able to occasionally interact with him in some manner. Right now, however, Patriarch Arcanum was obediently standing behind the horned man, and the two other Celestial Immortals with him were doing the same. This caused all sorts of speculations to run rampant through their minds.
“Can it be that this horned man is the true, actual supreme power of our Youngflame clan?”
“There were five Celestial Immortals earlier; now, four more have appeared. Can it be that our Youngflame clan actually has nine Celestial Immortals? We’re actually this powerful!? Or perhaps the horned man isn’t a Celestial Immortal; is he one of those legendary Empyrean Gods or True Immortals?”
All sorts of thoughts and speculations flashed through their minds, causing these Loose Immortals and Earth Immortals of the Youngflame clan who were watching to feel extremely nervous.
The horned, golden-robed man and the three Celestial Immortals with him stared downwards. They were able to see that fiery copper pillar located at the bottom of the deep gorge. Next to the pillar were five Celestial Immortals who were assaulting it, trying to slow it down. At the very bottom of the pillar…there was a nine hundred meter tall Ji Ning who was using six arms to tug at the pillar, wildly trying to uproot it.
“Damn him, he’s moving my furnace.” The horned, golden-robed man’s face was sinister. “All of you, attack to suppress and press down the copper pillar.”
The three Celestial Immortals under his command, Goldcloud, Blackrain, and Arcanum, simultaneously assented and began to fly downwards.
As for the horned, golden-robed man, he opened his mouth.
Swoosh! Swoosh! Swoosh!
Three tiny black dots flew out, and as they did, they immediately expanded. Instantly, they transformed into a trio of terrifying aberrations that were more than thirty thousand meters long. One of them was the armored insect aberration that had sixteen knife-like legs. A second looked like a gigantic rhinoceros that had unbelievably thick skin…but on its back it had a total of twelve pairs of wings. The final creature was a viper whose body was covered with circles of black tattoos. The tattoos were extremely beautiful, and at the head of the viper, they actually came together to form the tattoo of a crown.
The horned, golden-robed man was seated atop the back of the winged rhinoceros, and he directed the three massive aberrations to move downwards, as fast as lightning.
THUD! THUD! THUD! A series of massive thudding sounds could be heard from deep within the fiery stone wall.
Ning continued to focus all his efforts on pulling up that giant copper pillar. The giant copper pillar rose up rapidly, and the more of it Ning pulled out, the more brilliant became the glow of the countless runes that had appeared on the fiery stone wall beneath Ning’s feet. However, they were also beginning to flicker…and the thudding sounds began to speed up as well.
“Eh?” As Ning pulled upwards, Ning suddenly had the feeling as though deep below this enormous copper pillar, on the other side of the massive fiery stone wall, a power was beginning to awaken and grow stronger. It was as though some sort of terrifying behemoth was struggling to push up the pillar, attempting to shove it higher!
The more Ning pulled out, the more power began to gather in the deepest depths, helping push the pillar upwards nonstop. This made it easier and easier for Ning to pull it out.
“Don’t act against Ji Ning. It’s useless.” Celestial Immortal Infatuation, upon seeing Celestial Immortal Arcanum and the other two arrive, instantly sent a frantic mental message to them. “Ji Ning has the [Eight-Nine Arcane Art] protecting him; we’re completely unable to wound him. He also has a deathgrip around the copper pillar; we’re completely unable to dislodge him. What we need to do right now is to stop that copper pillar from rising up.”
“Right.” The three Celestial Immortals who had arrived all understood this right away. They all each began to use their own techniques to push downwards at the massive copper pillar.
“Eh?” The enormous six-armed Ning, nine hundred meters tall and located more than three thousand kilometers away from those eight Celestial Immortals, raised his head to give them a glance. Ning’s twin eyes were blazing with torch-light, and he was able to see everything with perfect clarity. He saw Celestial Immortal Arcanum and the other two join the fray as well, and also saw those three terrifying aberrations fly downwards, as well as that horned, golden-robed individual seated atop the back of the flying rhinoceros.
“More and more are coming.” Ning cracked his lips wide with a grin. “This Youngflame clan really is quite powerful. An ancient clan that ranks as one of the top ten of the Grand Xia Dynasty…it really is quite extraordinary. It seems I’ve really kicked over the hornet’s nest this time. The Youngflame clan is starting to panic.”
Indeed; to the Youngflame clan, ordinary clansmen would die out and be replaced every few centuries just through aging! To the clan, ordinary clansmen and ordinary cultivators weren’t that important; even if all of the people within the Oldjade mountain range perished, it would at most represent a loss of face for the clan. It wouldn’t actually affect their total power much; after all, they had two other headquarters! They could let the people in those two other headquarters replenish their losses and once more occupy the entire Oldjade mountain range.
In addition, aside from their three main headquarters, the Youngflame clan also was in command of many minor worlds. Their bloodline and their clan was spread extremely wide; there was no need for them to worry about their clan being wiped out.
In truth…the Ancestor probably wouldn’t even be willing to come here, if it was simply a matter of the Oldjade mountain range being destroyed.
But Ji Ning had made a move on the Infinity Furnace! This threatened one of the foundations of the Youngflame clan, and so even the Ancestor could no longer ignore it.
“So what if there are eight Celestial Immortals here? They still can’t stop me.” Ning continued to quickly pull out the copper pillar. In truth, the suppressive power unleashed by the eight Celestial Immortals was extremely strong, but each time Ning pulled out more of the copper pillar, the power pushing upwards from below the pillar grew increasingly strong. In fact, the pushing power was almost comparable to Ning’s pulling power by now!
Thus, Ning actually found it even easier now than he had before, despite the fact that eight Celestial Immortals had just joined forces.
The first of the three aberrations to fly downwards was that enormous armored insect. It completely wrapped its sixteen knife-legs around the fiery copper pillar! To this massive armored insect that was more than thirty thousand meters long, the fiery copper pillar, which was merely three hundred meters thick, was actually quite slender and thin. The terrifying strength of the armored insect caused Ning to actually sense the copper pillar sink down slightly!
“This aberration has tremendous power; if I didn’t use [Three Heads, Six Arms], I would probably actually be weaker than it in terms of strength.” Ning couldn’t help but feel surprised as he looked at the armored insect.
Next came the thirty thousand meter black serpent. It looped and coiled itself around the fiery copper pillar. Instantly, a second surge of power that was no weaker than that of the power of the armored insect came pressing down, causing Ning to feel that the pillar had grown even heavier.
THUD! THUD! THUD! Ning could sense the thudding sounds coming from deep below the fiery stone wall beneath his feet were beginning to increase even more in pace. The power below the copper pillar was still gaining in power…and by now, its power had completely eclipised Ji Ning’s. With the aid of this power…Ning was still able to continue pulling the copper pillar up!
ROAAAAR! One of the massive hooves of the winged rhinoceros slammed down directly against the very top of the copper pillar, instantly causing the entire copper pillar to grow even heavier.
“That flying rhinoceros aberration…its strength is actually even greater than that of the black snake and the strange insect?” Ning was shocked. “Even when I use the [Starseizing Hand] with six arms, my power would most likely only be on par with that rhinoceros aberration.”
Ning tightly clutched the copper pillar. He could sense the power below the copper pillar growing increasingly savage; in fact, it was almost equal to and achieved a balance with the pressuring force from above that was seeking to push the pillar down. As for Ning…he was the tiebreaker that broke the balance between these two powers.
“Come out!” Ning’s six arms exerted their full power; by himself, he was already comparable to the eight Celestial Immortals above him in strength, and was comparable to the flying rhinoceros, the most physically strong creature on the other side.
The face of the horned, golden-robed man seated on the back of the flying rhinoceros completely changed. The Celestial Immortals under his command were all Ki Refiners; in this sort of competition of raw strength, they were innately at a disadvantage! But the three aberrations he controlled were far more powerful in raw strength; he had thought that with their appearance, the pillar would be effortlessly pushed down.
The western sea of the world of the Grand Xia. The headquarters of the Seamless Gate.
“Ahahaha, Immortal Venomfreak is in for some trouble now!” Celestial Immortal Blackheaven roared with laughter, waving his hands and feet about in delight.
“So this is the founding father of the Youngflame clan?” The nearby Violetgrass stared curiously towards the horned, golden-robed man. Although she had heard of the founder before, she knew very little about him.
Celestial Immortal Blackheaven laughed, then nodded. “Right. This is the founder of the Youngflame clan. Back in the era of Pangu’s World…there was an extremely powerful clan known as the ‘Godfire’ clan. This was a clan that was protected by a Daofather; this clan was one of the most supreme clans amongst the many clans of the world. A woman of this clan was raped by a Fiendgod, and she gave birth to a child that had the bloodline and lineage of that Fiendgod. This child was born looking like a hideous freak, more monster than man. Thus, he was ostracized by his clan. As a result, he never felt as though he was a member of the Godfire clan. He long ago departed from the clan, establishing his own Youngflame clan!”
“This ugly child was the founder of the Youngflame clan…Youngflame Freak. An eccentric, cautious, sinister, and truly crafty freak.” Celestial Immortal Blackheaven said in a low voice, “Although he is ‘only’ a Celestial Immortal…even I am unwilling to make an enemy of him.”
Violetgrass nodded lightly.
Naturally, she had heard of some of the legends of Immortal Venomfreak.
Within the Three Realms, there were fairly few Pure Yang True Immortals and Empyrean Gods, after all; the likes of Patriarch Lu, also known as Lu Dongbin, and other similarly formidable members of the Three Realms were people that even Celestial Immortals had to receive with tremendous respect. True Immortals and Empyrean Gods were simply far, far too few in number. By comparison, there were many more Celestial Immortals, and amongst them were some truly monstrous freaks. Although it was extremely hard for a Celestial Immortal to break through to the True Immortal level, these Celestial Immortals had reputations that were not one whit inferior to the reputation of most True Immortals or Empyrean Gods.
Celestial Immortal Blackheaven was one such figure!
Immortal Venomfreak was another!
“This Venomfreak has many clones. Although every single clone has fairly average power…” Celestial Immortal Blackheaven sighed. “Because of how many clones he has, it is almost completely impossible to kill him. For example, this ‘Venomfreak’ before us…he’s nothing more than a single one of the clones.”
“Venomfreak’s power in battle is ordinary, but his venomous insects are far too dangerous. His abilities in raising venomous insects can be considered amongst the best in the Three Realms. I really wonder where he found this sort of a legacy.” Celestial Immortal Blackheaven sighed. “These three insects that we are seeing…each of them has combat power comparable to a supreme Celestial Immortal. In addition, these insects have no fear of death, and so they are even more terrifying than actual Celestial Immortals. Thus…even back during the era of Pangu’s World, Immortal Venomfreak was famous for being extremely difficult to deal with. Killing him would be very difficult, unless a Daofather or comparable power was to seek out and destroy every single one of his clones. A few of his insects have died, but with the passage of time, he’s been able to produce other terrifyingly strong insects as well.”
“Thus…we should ideally try to split Immortal Venomfreak from the Xia Emperor’s side and pull him over to ours,” Celestial Immortal Blackheaven said. “He will prove of tremendous use to us.”
This eccentric, cautious, sinister, and truly crafty golden-robed figure stared downwards. Upon seeing that his three insects were unable to prevent the copper pillar from being pulled upwards, he began to grow frantic. He immediately sent a message with his coresense: “Ji Ning, brat, if you don’t want to die, then stop right now!”