Makino’s heart sank to the bottom of a valley upon seeing the wretched smile on Fan Lie’s visage. Even though he was at the Arterial Circulation Realm, he couldn’t exert any strength while falling through the air, and could only look on helplessly at the arrows fired up into the sky.
“Thwish, thud……” Makino did his best to block the arrows, but was unable to defend against the third, which embedded itself right in the middle of his brow. This time around, the price of pursuit was death.
At the same instance that Makino was struck, Haku leapt down from his black eagle, and sped over towards Fan Le.
Qin Wentian stepped out, brilliantly displaying the might of his Dragon Subduing Fist, and clashed directly with Haku.
“Kill.” Waves of intense killing intent flashed through Haku’s eyes as he unleashed his own technique, Star Descending Fist. As Haku’s fist swept towards him, Qin Wentian only felt an tyrannical immense energy gushing towards him and his countenance underwent a drastic change. Borrowing the power of the force to aid in his retreat, Qin Wentian abandoned any thoughts of clashing with Haku as the explosive impact caused his body to be flung backwards and collide with Fan Le.
Fan Le retreated several steps from the force of the impact, and by chance, retreated inside the boundary of the misty valley.
“We can’t defeat him, what do we do?” Fan Le helped Qin Wentian up as he depressedly stated.
“Since we can’t defeat him, let’s escape.” Qin Wentian’s entire arm was in extreme pain. If it hadn’t been for his fast reaction, to retract his fist back in that instant, his entire arm would’ve been disabled.
Little Rascal understood the intentions in Qin Wentian’s heart, and it expanded in size. The two of them mounted it, and Little Rascal sped off towards the misty valley.
This scenario caused Haku to be stunned — could it be that they had no idea that Mirage City in the misty valley was a forbidden ground?
“Useless trash who don’t know that their courting death. They chose to kill Makino first, in order to stop the demonic beasts under his control from keeping tabs on them.” Orfon walked over. He couldn’t help but feel lucky in his heart, the co-operation between the two of them had been too flawless, not counting that beast that was capable of transformation. If it weren’t for them deciding that Makino was the greater threat, the first target marked for elimination would’ve been him.
But what a pity, they would surely die now. The Dark Forest, although extremely vast and spacious, still had some areas that were off limits. Mirage City inside the misty valley was one of these forbidden places. Once one entered, they couldn’t hope to be able to come out.
“The deed is done. As for Makino’s death, deal with it yourself.” Haku turned away and departed, causing Orfon to gnash his teeth with apprehension. This matter was going to be slightly troublesome.
Inside the misty valley, Little Rascal was still dashing forward at top speed.
“There’s no one chasing after us?” Fan Le’s voice rang out.
“Yup.” Qin Wentian replied.
“Seems like there’s something wrong… could it be that this place is extremely dangerous?” Fan Le’s body trembled uncontrollably. Was that why they’d stopped being pursued?
“Will we die here?” Fan Le’s voice was filled with the tone of sobbing.
Inside of Misty Valley, they couldn’t be sure of which direction they had came from. They were actually lost……
“The fatty me is still a virgin! Even if I have to die, I have to die with a beautiful babe in my arms.” The fatty hugged Qin Wentian as he sobbed, while Qin Wentian’s reply was to raise his foot and kick straight at Fan Le’s buttocks.
After another hour, they finally walked out of the mist-filled area. The moment they stepped out, a shocking sight awaited them. In front of their eyes, was a castle…… Mirage City of the misty valley wasn’t a city, but was an actual castle instead.
However, not just that, but they could see many armored warriors within the Castle. The warriors were all equipped with black armor, and were filled with solemnity and a murderous presence. Upon seeing the two intruders, a troop of black-armored warriors began advancing towards them, pointing their spears at them, as their killing intent was released, which almost caused Fatty to trip over his feet as he scrambled backwards.
“The fatty me can’t be so unlucky right.” This time around, Fan Le really sobbed. These warriors were all at the Arterial Circulation Realm, and all of them had a higher cultivation base than him — there was no escape.
Qin Wentian had never thought that there would actually be a hidden castle inside the Dark Forest, and that there would be such a terrifying army.
The killing intent got stronger and stronger, and Qin Wentian and Fan Le both released their Astral Souls, preparing to escape even if there was no way to escape.
“Qin-Wen-Tian.” At this moment, from a fair distance away, a fully armored figure walked over, shouting the name of Qin Wentian. The voice was somewhat hoarse, as his face was covered by a helm that only revealed a pair of eyes.
“Huh?” The pupils of Qin Wentian contracted in confusion. In this remote place, there was actually someone who knew him?
“All of you, retreat.” That figure indifferently commanded, and only after the troops of the black-armored warriors had retreated, did Fan Le heave a sigh of relief.
“You are?” Qin Wentian curiously gazed at the figure.
“The Mirage City is a forbidden area. Those who enter, will never leave again. However, you are an exception. Come with me.” After saying that, the mysterious figure turned and walked towards the castle, as Qin Wentian and Fan Le followed close behind, bewildered.
The mysterious figure brought them to an extremely comfortable looking abode. There were even pretty girls who were serving as maids.
“Take good care of them.” The mysterious figure instructed, and he continued, “Qin Wentian, if you all wish to leave, just inform the maids, and I will arrange an escort to safely send you out. But remember this, you are not to divulge the location of the Mirage City. If you do so, I guarantee that the both of you won’t be able to survive past three days.”
“Most certainly.” Fatty grinned. The mysterious figure cast a glance at Qin Wentian and continued, “Since your cultivation base is at the 9th level of the Body Refinement Realm, it’s about time for you to try breaking through to the Arterial Circulation Realm.”
After he finished speaking, the mysterious figure left, leaving behind an extremely puzzled Qin Wentian.
“Who is he?” Fan Le asked, after the mysterious figure and the maids had left.
“How would I know?” Qin Wentian shrugged his shoulders. Even after searching all of his memories, he was still unable to guess as to the identity of the mysterious figure.
“Do you want to secretly escape?” Fan Le whispered, but the moment the words were out of his mouth, he instantly regretted it. Several pretty-looking maids were bringing dishes of delicacies over, causing the eyes of Fan Le to turn into saucers — how could he ever want to escape from such a heavenly place.
After the maids had placed all the food onto the table, they retreated to the side. Fan Le smiled and invited them over, “Beautiful sisters, let’s eat together.”
The beautiful maids all shook their heads, indicating that they didn’t dare to do so.
Fan Le felt that it was a pity, before looking at the food again as his belly growled with hunger.
“Leopard’s gut, bear’s heart, crimson snake fruit…… the food here is just too awesome.” Fan Le was shocked. However, this castle was located within the Dark Forest, and considering the strength they possessed, they indeed had a natural superiority when it comes to hunting.
What made Fan Le even more amazed however, was that shortly after, there were even people delivering Yuan Meteor Stones for Qin Wentian’s usage, saying that it was for his breakthrough to the Arterial Circulation Realm. Fan Le began suspecting that Qin Wentian was actually the young master of the castle.
Between buddies, the most important thing is the code of brotherhood. Fan Le righteously began splitting the Yuan Meteor Stones between them evenly, under the pretext that Qin Wentian wouldn’t be able to use all of them.
After seeing the Yuan Meteor Stones that were prepared for him, Qin Wentian understood that they had no ill intentions. After which, he began to cultivate quietly, in an attempt to breakthrough to the Arterial Circulation Realm.
As for Fan Le, he was on cloud nine — eating the free food, chatting with the beautiful ladies — the days passed at a leisurely pace. The food provided here were definitely comparable to that of the Royal Palace. Not only this, from his estimations, not many from the aristocratic clans would be able to afford such good conditions; eating high graded demonic beast’s meat daily would immensely aid in cultivation.
Other than the excellent treatment, there was no one who came to bother them.
As the night darkened, Qin Wentian sat cross-leggedly on the ground. The mist that permeated the valley was incapable of blocking the starlight. At this moment, thunderous sounds of cracking and grinding could be heard from within Qin Wentian’s body, as a corona of radiant Astral Light seemed to revolve around him.
“The fleshly body glowing with it’s own light, while Astral Light nourishes the body… this is an indication of a peak Body Refinement Realm cultivation base.” Fan Le lazily laid down, as he look at the cultivating Qin Wentian. This fellow was really hard working — for the past few days, the only thing Qin Wentian had done was immerse himself in cultivating.
“Poof.” A crisp sound rang out, causing Fan Le to widen his eyes in surprise and stare at Qin Wentian, before curling his lips into a slight smile, “He’s begun to prepare himself for breaking through to the Arterial Circulation Realm, and has opened up all of his acupuncture points.”
“The speed of this fellow’s cultivation is just too frightening — didn’t he just have a breakthrough a few days ago?” Fan Le murmured in his heart. Although there was external assistance such as eating the demonic beast’s meat, as well as the Yuan Meteor Stones, the most important reason behind the speed of his breakthrough was the fact that his cultivation technique was extremely overbearing, and that the tyrannical energy provided by a constellation from the 5th Heavenly Layer was extremely suitable for the refinement and tempering of the body.
The purpose of the Body Refinement Realm was to temper your flesh until you achieve a perfect body. Those with weak cultivation methods, and that relied on absorbing Astral Energy from low-level constellations, would have a low effect towards the refinement of their fleshy body. In contrast, if the cultivation method was of a high level, and the Astral Energy within the body was powerful enough, one would be able to achieve the perfect body within a much shorter period of time. Qin Wentian belonged to the latter group, possessing both an excellent cultivation technique, and a tyrannical Astral Soul.
The domineering Astral Energy from the Heavenly Hammer Constellation of the 5th Heavenly Layer continuously descended, and fell onto Qin Wentian body. Within his body, boundless Astral Energy circulated, as it gathered at his various acupuncture points frenziedly surging.
Within the human body, there were many energy channels and acupuncture points. In the Arterial Circulation Realm, one needed to completely “open up” their acupuncture points. Only than would one be able to store even more Astral Energy. After which, one had to use the gathered Astral Energy to “clear” the acupuncture points of debris and filth, before connecting the energy channels to the acupuncture points, forming a main, circular pathway, through one of the nine main meridians to the entire body whereby Astral Energy could flow freely.
And after the circulated pathway was fully completed, Astral Energy would flow unhindered throughout the four limbs, bone structure and energy channels, immensely improving one’s attacking and defensive capabilities. Not only that, the Astral Energy Essense would then sink into the eyes and ears of the cultivator, immensely elevating one’s senses.
Regardless of the fact of whether one was a Martial Cultivator or Stellar Martial Cultivator, both types was able to enter the Arterial Circulation Realm.
As each of his acupuncture points was cleared, the expression on Qin Wentian’s face became increasingly more painful. Qin Wentian grit his teeth forcefully and persevered, as sounds of his ragged breathing could be heard.
Fan Le, at the side, was mumbling nonsensically. This fellow beside him was truly putting his life in the line. But even so, he wasn’t worried, as a trace of a smile could be seen on the tip of his lips.
The look of contempt by Orchon and the crazed pursuit by Orfon, were deeply etched into his mind. Qin Wentian had to make his breakthrough as soon as possible, and condense his second Astral Soul in the shortest time possible.
And now, the deadline of the examination had arrived.
In the morning, the applicants who had entered the Dark Forest, all walked out. The examiners and seniors from the nine martial academies were all waiting on the outskirts. As for those who’d survived this ordeal, they would officially become one of their members.
Janus, Mustang, were standing together. And beside them, was Orchon, Luo Huan, as well as Mo Qingcheng.
“Orfon is out.” Janus let out a laugh as he saw the figure of Orfon. In the future, Orfon would be one of his disciples as well.
The beautiful eyes of Luo Huan flashed with a worried expression. This Orfon had once made a move against Qin Wentian when they had been in the Dark Forest. Later on, although both she and Mo Qingcheng would closely monitor Orchon, there was no guarantee that Orfon wouldn’t do something behind their backs and seek others for help to do something to Qin Wentian. After all, the applicants for the training exercise came from all over the country. Only those from the Royal Capital, especially the aristocratic clans, would be familiar with each other,.
Mo Qingcheng coldly glanced at Orfon, causing his countenance to stiffen, as he lowered his head, not daring to meet her eyes. In front of this woman, despite the fact that he wanted to steal more glances at her, he didn’t dare to incline his head.
Mo Qingcheng was paying attention to the applicants who exited the Dark Forest. As for the happenings that day, she was riddled with guilt. On that day, when she saw Qin Wentian chasing after Orfon to kill him, she had jumped straight to conclusions and deeply regretted the fact that she didn’t spend the time to properly investigate the matter.
Soon after, the sun set, and the beautiful red rays of the sun set shone onto the trees of the Dark Forest. Qin Wentian was still not out yet, while 300+ applicants from the Emperor Star Academy had already safely exited.
When compared to the other martial academies, the passing rate for the Emperor Star Academy was the highest, despite having the least applicants.
“Orfon, what have you done to Qin Wentian?” Mo Qingcheng turned her gaze towards Orfon as she coldly asked.
“I have no idea, the Dark Forest was too vast. Maybe he died at the hands of demonic beasts.” Orfon replied in a panic.
An extremely stifling pressure was emitted from the body of Mo Qingcheng, as Orfon hid behind the back of Orchon, only to see Mo Qingcheng coldly continue stating, “If anything happened to him, I will hold you responsible. Just you wait.”
All of a sudden, Mo Qingcheng flew off on her demonic crane. Luo Huan, upon seeing the desolate looking backside of Mo Qingcheng, knew that Mo Qingcheng truly regretted her mistake, and didn’t blame her at all.
Her gaze, filled with an icy air, mirrored that of Mo Qingcheng, as it swept past Orchon and Orfon .
“Regarding this matter, I will leave no stones unturned.” Mustang felt regret in agreeing to the intentions of his esteemed teacher. After all, the current Qin Wentian was still a weak cultivator at the Body Refinement Realm. If anything truly happened to Qin Wentian, he would be unable to calm the unease in his heart.