As the fist descended upon the bear totem Western Desert Cultivator, his face flickered. The first thing that happened was that the giant bear shook violently and then shattered into countless pieces. As the boom echoed out, the man’s body caved in. Blood sprayed from his mouth in seven or eight spurts as he was hurled violently backward several hundred meters. Eventually he ground to a halt, coughed up another mouthful of blood, and then sagged visibly, his body covered in blood.
His complexion suddenly seemed to grow older. Before he had even stopped moving, he’d changed from being a middle-aged man, to an ancient one. His hair was gray, his skin covered with wrinkles, and his eyes listless.
Most terrifying of all, the three totem tattoos on his body faded and then disappeared.
Shockingly, a tiny, shrieking phantom version of the enormous bear from just now, floated above Meng Hao’s right hand.
Meng Hao wasn’t finished. In the space of a single breath, he took a step forward and lashed out with three more fist strikes.
The first fist slammed into the elephant totem Western Desert Cultivator. Blood showered from his mouth as he tumbled backward about fifty meters. He groaned, and it sounded like his body might be about to explode. He rapidly grew older; his life force dissipated, and his totems faded. Now a bear and an elephant circled around Meng Hao’s hand.
His second punch slammed into the chest of one of the azure-masked Cultivators. Crunching sounds could be heard, and the man screamed. His mask shattered as blood shot from his mouth. He also was flung backward fifty meters or so; his body aged rapidly, and it seemed as if his Cultivation base might collapse.
The third punch landed onto the other azure masked Cultivator. His Cultivation base was a bit weaker than the other; he had just stepped into the early Core Formation stage and as such, his Core was not completely stable. Meng Hao’s fist strike sent him tumbling back about thirty-five meters; his scalp went numb as he felt a terrifying power surging through his body, destroying everything. His Core shattered, and then his entire body exploded into a haze of blood and gore.
All of this happened in the blink of an eye. Then, Meng Hao was in front of Luo Chong. His diaphanously gloved hand shot out, latching onto Luo Chong’s neck, lifting him up into the air.
Behind his gold mask, Luo Chong’s eyes shone with intense fear and astonishment. His body trembled and he panted raggedly. However, he didn’t dare to struggle. He could sense the intense killing intent emanating out from his faceless attacker. The denseness of the killing intent caused his mind to reel.
Seeing Meng Hao’s billowing killing intent, Duo Lan’s face paled and she cried, “Great Demon Lord, please listen to me! We harbor no ill intentions. What happened just now was a misunderstanding. Great Demon Lord, I beg you to forgive our hot-headedness. We did not know this was your territory. Great Demon Lord please stay your hand…. We are willing to provide compensation for our actions just now.”
“Great Demon Lord,” gushed Luo Chong, “this… this is all just a misunderstanding. Really, just a misunderstanding….” He felt like he already had one foot in the grave, the same feeling he’d had when facing Fang Mu from the Southern Domain, about whom he still frequently had nightmares.
That was the first time he’d felt like this. Now was the second.
Except, the feeling this time was even more intense than the first time. All of his arrogance from moments ago had completely disintegrated.
“Misunderstanding?” said Meng Hao, his voice hoarse, like two rocks rubbing against each other. His left hand reached into his robe to pull out a medicinal pill. He shoved it into Luo Chong’s mouth, and then sent an identical pill shooting over toward Duo Lan.
“Consume that pill,” he said coolly, “and then we can consider this matter a misunderstanding.” Luo Chong’s eyes flickered with even more intense fear. He wasn’t sure what medicinal pill he had just consumed, but he could imagine what it might be. There was nothing he could do about it now; he would have to wait until he got back to the Black Lands Palace, where the effects could surely be dispelled.
Duo Lan’s face flickered as she hesitated. She didn’t care too much whether Luo Chong lived or died. However, if she didn’t consume the pill, then the result of the offense given just now would not be good.
Gritting her beautiful teeth, Duo Lan lifted up the medicinal pill and then swallowed it down. She looked at Meng Hao.
He loosened his hand, then flicked his sleeve and turned to walk back toward the mountain. Purposely putting an imperious expression onto his face, he said, “Get the hell out of here. If you ever again enter the area three hundred kilometers in any direction, the poison will kill you! No alchemist under Heaven can neutralize my demonic pills.” With that, he disappeared into the Immortal’s Cave.
Luo Chong, Duo Lan and the others hesitated only for a moment before disappearing off into the distance.
When they were about a hundred kilometers away, they finally stopped and looked back in the direction of Meng Hao’s Immortal’s cave.
“Dammit…. Once I get back to the Black Lands Palace, I’ll dispatch some people to wipe that place out!” said Luo Chong, a dangerous look on his face.
“I’ll take care of it,” said one of the old azure-masked Cultivators through clenched jaw. “Let’s see what superhuman abilities that guy really has. I’ll…” Before he could finish speaking however, a single word suddenly rang out from nowhere.
One word. The instant it echoed out, the azure-masked Cultivator began to tremble. Luo Chong and the others watched in astonishment as a pulsating black aura emerged from his ears, eyes, nose and mouth. Soon a massive black aura was spreading out from him. As for Duo Lan, she could see that above the old man’s head was a phantom figure; it was none other than Meng Hao’s Righteous Bestowal Demonic Incarnation.
The blurry Demonic Incarnation burrowed into the man’s body through the top of his head. The azure-masked Cultivator began to scream, and his right arm suddenly began to quiver. Luo Chong watched on in astonishment as the man’s right arm suddenly struck out toward his own forehead.
A boom could be heard as the man’s head exploded, killing him instantly.
“Take care of yourselves,” said Meng Hao coolly before disappearing.
Everything was as silent as death.
Luo Chong’s body shook uncontrollably, and he immediately abandoned any thoughts about what he had just been talking about. The only thing he could think of was that he would never come with three hundred kilometers of this place ever again.
Duo Lan was panting and her eyes were wide. She had seen some so-called Demon Lords in the Western Desert, but none of them were as bizarrely frightening as this one.
“What if it was turned into a totem…?” thought Duo Lan. Her heart beat even faster.
Maintaining their silence, the remaining four Cultivators shot off into the distance.
Outside the Immortal’s cave, the retreat of Luo Chong and the others caused the eyes of the more than one hundred Cultivators to fill with fanaticism. Cultivators worshipped the powerful, and the power displayed by Meng Hao just now left their minds reeling and hearts trembling.
“Did you see that?” squawked the parrot, immediately flying up into the air. Its eyes slowly passed over the amassed Cultivators. “That was none other than Lord Fifth’s Celestial magic! If you diligently practice your cultivation according to my methods, then it won’t be long before you are just as powerful!”
Back in the Immortal’s cave, Meng Hao’s looked down at his right hand, and his eyes filled with a mysterious glow.
“This right hand, coupled with the power of my Cultivation base and the Demonic Qi, can exterminate the mid Core Formation stage. However, when it comes to late Core Formation, my only option is to use the Blood Immortal mask.
“Either way, considering I’m at the peak of the early Core Formation stage, there aren’t many other Core Formation Cultivators who are a match for me. Once I succeed with the Perfect Gold Core and enter mid Core Formation, a Cultivator in the same stage who could deal with me would be a rarity indeed!” His eyes gleamed with self-confidence.
As far as he was concerned, the difference between the power he had wielded in Foundation Establishment, and his power now, was vast.
“Getting the last medicinal plant ingredient won’t be hard. But the Heavenly Tribulation which will come after I form the Perfect Gold Core… that will be a problem.” Meng Hao frowned. That was what he had the most misgivings about. The Heavenly Tribulation from back in Foundation Establishment had been terrifying. If the Blood Immortal Legacy hadn’t fought against it for him, Meng Hao would never have been able to form the Perfect Foundation.
Muttering to himself, his eyes glittered as he sent his Spiritual Sense out with a message. A few moments later, flapping sounds could be heard as the colorful parrot flew in from outside, looking a bit impatient.
“What’s going on?!” it said, eyeing Meng Hao. “Don’t you know that Lord Fifth is in the middle of training those Cultivators out there? Don’t you know how precious Lord Fifth’s time is?”
“How do I transcend Heavenly Tribulation?” asked Meng Hao, not beating around the bush.
“Heavenly Tribulation?” The Parrot stared in shock, and then flew a few circles around Meng Hao, seemingly sizing him up from various angles. Finally, it made a clucking noise and shook its head. It sighed. “Nobody can transcend it. You’re dead. It seems that I, Lord Fifth, ancient Celestial bird, should consider getting a new master.”
It was about to leave, when Meng Hao, his expression the same as ever, calmly said, “So, you don’t even know how to transcend tribulation. And you still call yourself an ancient Celestial Bird.” His face was clearly filled with a sneer.
When the parrot saw the sneer, its feathers immediately stood on end, and it glared at Meng Hao.
“I don’t know?” it said, panting. “You dare to tell me I don’t know? I… I can’t be fooled so easily!” Instead of continuing any further, it put on a supercilious expression and began to preen its feathers.
“So, you really are just a flashy old bird!” said Meng Hao casually, his sneer growing even more obvious. He even went so far as to close his eyes, as if he didn’t deign to continue the conversation.
The parrot was instantly furious. Pecking furiously at its feathers as it preened, it roared, “Who said I don’t know?! I know a method that can suppress and delay Heavenly Tribulation. There’s no Celestial magic like that which I don’t know!”
“So, you really don’t know,” replied Meng Hao lightly.
“Heavenly Tribulation is nothing but farts!” roared the parrot. “Back in the day, I could transcend tribulation with a single breath! Even now, I know at least ten thousand ways… no, I mean, a million different ways to do it! I’ll tell you one of them. All you have to do is find a miraculous life form, the type whose roots and leaves are connected the same way a mother and a son are connected. The roots cannot be destroyed, and the leaves never die. The leaves never die, and the roots cannot be destroyed! You hold onto the roots, and use the leaves to defend against the Heavenly Tribulation. That is how you can transcend tribulation!
“Too bad for you miraculous life forms like that aren’t common. Even things similar to it aren’t common. They’re all extinct. You would have to have an incredible amount of luck and fortune to happen across one. Just from looking at you, I’d say it’s not gonna happen. You’re not that kind of person. Most likely, you’re dead.”
Hearing the parrot’s words actually caused Meng Hao’s eyes to flicker. After analyzing the parrot’s words, they seemed to make quite a bit of sense. Furthermore, his mind was currently reeling. This was because he had thought of a miraculous life form from the Black Lands that was very similar to what the parrot had described!
This chapter was sponsored by Bijuan Dong, Lim Derek, CV, and Vang Xiong