The Black Lands was like a plateau, shoved high into the sky seemingly by geological forces. Far down below was the Western Desert.
This was Meng Hao’s first time seeing the border between the Black Lands and the Western Desert. Years ago when he left the Black Lands, he had not traveled through this area, but rather, had been teleported through an ancient portal to the Western Desert North region.
Seeing the lay of the land for the first time caused Meng Hao’s eyes to subconsciously widen slightly. Now, he finally understood why the Black Lands was the only place where one could escape from the Western Desert Apocalypse.
The Western Desert South region was much, much higher in elevation than the northern parts. That was why right now, the West, North, and East regions had already been completely submerged and transformed into a Violet Sea. In those areas, it even smelled like a salty sea. Here in the south, however, rivers had not yet even formed.
All of the falling rain continued to flow down toward the north.
The Western Desert South region was high enough as it was, but the Black Lands… were even higher. They jutted up thousands of meters into the sky, cliff-like, as if formed by an earthquake.
Needless to say, endless mountain ranges existed along the edge of the Black Lands. Those mountains seemed to connect to the sky itself, preventing the violet-colored tempest up above, along with any other living thing, from entering.
Those mountains made the Black Lands’ total elevation reach a shocking height. It could prevent the spread of the Violet Sea, and furthermore, there was only one way in….
It was eighty thousand meters wide, right in the middle of all the mountains. It stood there, tall, straight, enormous. All the Cultivators who saw it would gasp.
Blackgate Fort was the color of night, and its gate shut tight. Atop the eighty thousand meter wide fort stretched a battlement, upon which could be seen tens of thousands of Cultivators, bunched together in groups. They were chatting and laughing, as they looked out over the battlement, occasionally pointing down below.
What caused Meng Hao’s pupils to constrict was that the violet rain which he had grown so accustomed to over the years did not fall on Blackgate Fort. Outside, it continued to pour down, but not a drop fell onto Blackgate Fort or that enormous battlement.
Outside of Blackgate Fort, the land was filled with fog and mist, and was hazy. In fact, it had been years since Meng Hao even caught a glimpse of the sun. And yet there, within Blackgate Fort, a majestic blue sky could be seen, even fluffy white clouds.
Blackgate Fort was like a division between two different worlds.
What caused Meng Hao and Xu Bai’s faces to become extremely unsightly was that between Blackgate Fort and their two Tribes could be seen… more than twenty bandit Tribes positioned in formation across the land. These Tribes were currently looking at the Crow Divinity and great Black Dragon Tribes with avarice, ridicule and killing intent.
Twenty bandit Tribes, with a total of 200,000 Cultivators and 400,000 neo-demons. They were positioned in front of the fort, and it was clear that they intended to prevent anyone from entering the Black Lands.
Within their eyes, Meng Hao could see greed, savagery, and also a message.
“If we can’t get in, then you can forget about going in yourself! If we will die… then you will die with us!”
Meng Hao stood there silently. Then he noticed something located in front of these more than twenty Tribes. Tens of thousands of bamboo poles had been erected and were swaying slightly in the wind. All of these poles were covered with dried blood that had already turned black.
Atop each bamboo pole was a head. This was an entire Tribe, including old people and children. Further up could even be seen an enormous neo-demon head, which was obviously… this Tribe’s totemic Sacred Ancient.
This was none other than the Heavenly Wind Tribe.
Even closer to Meng Hao and Xu Bai were more than 20,000 bamboo poles stuck into the ground, completely bare. The significance of these poles was obvious… they were there for the heads of the Crow Divinity and Black Dragon Tribes.
The battlefield in front of them was deathly silent. No one spoke. Only the soft whimpering of the wind could be heard. Hundreds of thousands of Cultivators began to breathe heavily, and their killing intent rose up into the sky.
Blackgate Fort… was not easy to enter!
Another sound could be heard. It came from the tall battlement on the Black Lands. Tens of thousands of Cultivators were there watching the proceedings as if it were some sort of play.
To the people atop the battlement, the members of the Crow Divinity Tribe, the Black Dragon Tribe and the more than twenty bandit Tribes were nothing more than actors on a stage, putting on a performance for their enjoyment.
Some of them were members of the Heavenly Court Alliance. Others were members of Western Desert great Sects with Spirit Severing Patriarchs. Naturally, they could stand apart from the masses and watch down at the life or death game playing out in front of them.
Zhou Dekun was on the battlement, fists clenched tightly, expression sorrowful. There was nothing he could do to change anything about what was happening. He could only watch Meng Hao in silence.
Standing next to Zhou Dekun was the young man from the Cloud Sky Tribe named, who had appeared to Meng Hao in illusory form to parlay in front of the Locust Tribe. He sighed as he looked over the lands down below, as well as Meng Hao and the Crow Divinity Tribe.
“What a pity,” he said, shaking his head.
On another section of the battlement stood a woman who was surrounded by powerful experts. Clearly, she occupied a very high position. This was none other than… the woman who by chance had met Meng Hao in the Black Lands and had been frightened away by him. This was a Chosen of the great Demon Butterfly Tribe, one of the three forces that made up the Heavenly Court Alliance. Goddess Duo Lan! 1
She was currently frowning as she looked over the lands below. Her gaze eventually came to fall on Meng Hao.
“Duo Lan, why are you frowning? Don’t tell me this person offended you?” The gentle voice came from a young man standing next to her. He was big and tall, with handsome features and long hair. With his long, spotless white robe and charming smile, he was the spitting image of a Chosen.
He was surrounded by three old men who had profound Cultivation bases. Clearly this young man had an illustrious status.
This was the Chosen from the great Heavenly Pursuit Tribe, another of the leaders of the Heavenly Court Alliance. Zhang Wenzu!
“Oh nothing,” replied Duo Lan coolly. “He just seems familiar. I feel like I’ve seen him somewhere before, but can’t seem to remember where.”
Zhang Wenzu smiled as he stood there next to Duo Lan, looking at Meng Hao.
“A trifling insect,” he said, looking back at Duo Lan with a brilliant smile. “If you can’t remember, there’s no need to even think about it. It’s meaningless.”
Duo Lan didn’t seem to be used to him being so close to her. Without thinking about, she took a few steps back. What she didn’t notice was off in the distance in the crowd on the battlement, someone’s gaze shifted from her to Zhang Wenzu. That person’s gaze was filled with hatred.
The hatred quickly vanished without a trace. The gaze belonged to none other than former Black Lands Dao Child Luo Chong. He stood there in the crowds, his expression the same as ever, but inwardly gnashing his teeth. His former Sect had become an auxiliary branch of the Heavenly Court Alliance, and he had lost his former position. Although he was of the Core Formation stage, such a Cultivation Base was nothing outstanding. 2
“Slut!” he thought to himself. “And you, damnable Zhang Wenzu! You dare to touch the woman I’ve taken a liking to? One of those days I’ll see you dead!!” It was at this point that suddenly he stared in stupefaction out at the lands below. He rubbed his eyes vigorously as he looked at Meng Hao. Then, he began to pant.
“It’s… it’s him? How is it possible….”
Meanwhile, back in the Black Lands, in the area controlled by the Heavenly Court Alliance, was a completely unremarkable Sect. Its name was Church of the Golden Light.
Currently, the Church of the Golden Light had around seven or eight thousand disciples. All of them had excited expressions on their faces as they ran to and fro through mid-air. A bright glow gradually began to spread out, along with a shocking aura.
“A message from Lord Fifth has arrived! The Patriarch has returned!! Let’s go receive the Patriarch and Lord Fifth!”
“Have faith in the Lord Fifth, gain eternal life! When the Lord Fifth appears, who dares to cause strife!”
Back on the border between the Black Lands and the Western Desert, outside the enormous Blackgate Fort, Meng Hao and Xu Bai stood amidst the deathly silence.
Meng Hao looked over at Xu Bai and slowly said, “The last battle.”
Xu Bai was silent for a moment, then laughed. It was clear and bright laugh, filled with stubbornness. He looked back at Meng Hao and nodded.
“The last battle! Victory means we can enter the Black Lands. The announcement was made promising entrance into the Black lands for anyone who brought a Demon Spirit. There is no need for any regrets on our part. If we lose….
“Meng Hao, if I end up dying, will you allow the great Black Dragon Tribe to become a part of your Crow Divinity Tribe? What do you say?” Xu Bai’s expression was pure sincerity as he looked at Meng Hao.
Meng Hao looked back at Xu Bai and then nodded deeply.
“In that case, what need is there to fear death?! This is going to be one delightful battle!” Laughing heartily, Xu Bai leaped off of the black dragon. A thunderous sound could be heard as muscles bulged and his frame grew larger, revealing the shocking power of his physical body.
“Black Dragon Tribe!!” he cried, looking back at the members of his Tribe. All of them lifted their heads to look back at him. “Remove the seals. Fight!!”
The entire Black Dragon Tribe responded: “FIGHT!!”
The members of the Black Dragon Tribe followed Xu Bai as he charge forward. They untied the black cords tied around their wrists, causing an incredible aura to roar out. All of them instantly began to grow larger. This seal held back the true power of the great Black Dragon Tribe’s physical body training method. After opening the seal, the Tribe members’ bodies grew a full head taller. They looked like fierce, black dragons as they shot forward.
As for Meng Hao, he took a deep breath. He lifted his right hand up, within which appeared the Devil Spear. He looked back at the members of the Crow Divinity Tribe, and beyond, toward the Western Desert North region. That was the home of the Crow Divinity Tribe. He thought of the Golden Crow and the great tree. He thought about his promise to them, and about the long road upon which he had led the Crow Divinity Tribe, all the way to here.
Many images flitted in his mind, eventually transforming into the current moment. This was… the last battle!
“FIGHT!” This one word spoken by Meng Hao boomed out like thunder. The members of the Crow Divinity tribe felt their blood burning with righteous indignation. Killing intent boiled up, flared out. The Tribe knew… that this was the final moment which would decide the difference between life and death.
400,000 neo-demons filled the sky, emitting Heaven-shaking roars. Big Hairy was there. By now, he was a level 10 neo-demon. Hairys #2, #3 and the others weren’t quite a match for him, but they were intrepid nonetheless. The Wild Giant could also be seen. Gu La, as a true Dragoneer, had been of much assistance to Meng Hao throughout the journey. Right now, his eyes were bright red.
400,000 neo-demons charged roaring into battle.
The parrot’s shrill squawk suddenly rang out.
“Get into formation! Remember, get into formation….”
1.We met Duo Lan in chapter 323. She encountered Meng Hao and called him “Demon Lord” ↩
2.Luo Chong is the guy that Meng Hao a.k.a. Fang Mu slashed with the Wooden Time Sword by the Ancient Dao Geyser in chapter 269. Later, when he first arrived in the Black Lands, Meng Hao a.k.a. the Demon Lord poisoned Luo Chong in chapter 325. Later, he reappeared leading a force from the Black Palace against Holy Snow City in chapter 372. He escaped with his life while Meng Hao fought the Spirit Severing Cultivator. ↩