Chapter 162: Heavenstring Energy
Bai Xiaochun's eyes glittered at the sight of Song Que's precious jade amulet of teleportation. Just when he was about to give chase, he suddenly paused and looked down.
The ground down below had been completely flattened by the exploding blood sphere....
"Hold on a second...." Bai Xiaochun said, looking more than a little suspicious. "If Song Que had a jade amulet of teleportation, then it would have made more sense for him to use it the moment I interrupted his ninth Tideflow. After the collapse of the vortex, he was in the worst position possible!
"But instead of using the jade amulet, he used that blood sphere to fight me. He even got injured in the process. Although it seemed like he was really pissed off, now that I think about it, it seems more like... he was trying to erase evidence down below." After analyzing the matter a bit more, his eyes glittered.
"After I interrupted him, two things happened. The first was that his ninth Tideflow was destroyed, and the earthstring energy scattered. That was normal. But what was abnormal was how his earthstring energy formed a column of light that shot up into the sky and dispersed even more rapidly than before.
"Although it might seem innocuous at first, those two things together... are very suspicious!
"He's hiding something!
"He's hiding something that has to do with the sky, and with his spell formation on the ground. To figure out what it is he's hiding, I should compare things now with how they were before. Maybe then I can deduce the answer." Looking up into the sky, he confirmed that the Tideflow vortex had indeed dissipated. Because of how Song Que had directly returned the earthstring energy, some smaller, residual vortexes remained, but they were nothing like the larger vortex from before.
"Because of the ninth Tideflow vortex, and the waning earthstring energy, the sky grew weak...." After confirming this by observing a few different locations up above, he looked back down at the ground.
Ghostfang and Shangguan Tianyou were still there off to the side. Ghostfang looked suspiciously at what Bai Xiaochun was doing, whereas Shangguan Tianyou laughed coldly in his heart, then turned and left.
Bai Xiaochun ignored Shangguan Tianyou as he studied the ground below.
"This normally wouldn't be a good place for Foundation Establishment. But Song Que selected this location for a reason. Then he wiped out the evidence when he left." Frowning, Bai Xiaochun began to walk along, taking time to look up into the sky with every step.
Soon, he was standing in the exact spot where Song Que had been sitting cross-legged. There, he looked up into the sky again, and was just about to take another step, when suddenly his expression flickered. He stopped and stood there, staring up into the sky.
At first, everything seemed normal, even calm compared to before. But then, he sensed something. He couldn't be sure if it was real or not, but based on his nine Tideflows cultivation base, the peak of Earthstring Foundation Establishment, he suddenly got the feeling... that there was something up there so powerful that it was terrifying even to himself!
It was a pressure that filled him with intense desire, something that seemed connected to his nine spiritual seas.
"That's...." At first he couldn't believe it, but then he began to tremble and even pant. Without another thought, he leaped up into the air and flew off into the distance.
Ghostfang frowned as he watched Bai Xiaochun leaving. Then he headed over to the same spot where Bai Xiaochun had just been standing, and looked up into the sky. However, he didn't notice anything out of the ordinary. Only someone like Song Que, with a special magical item, and who had activated numerous energy nodes, would be able to do so. Or... someone at the peak of Earthstring Foundation Establishment, with the power of nine Tideflows.
In fact, the latter would find it even easier to sense what was above, and with more clarity.
Eventually, Ghostfang shook his head and left.
Not too much time passed before Bai Xiaochun returned, looking very excited, Hou Yunfei in tow. Hou Yunfei was just beginning to resume his Tideflow.
"Big Bro Hou, start your Tideflow here. I'll help you speed things along. I suspect that the sky above this point has a unique aura!!"
Hou Yunfei smiled. Considering the utter faith he had in Bai Xiaochun, he didn't feel the need to ask any further questions, and quickly sat down cross-legged and closed his eyes.
Standing behind him, Bai Xiaochun reached out and placed his palm onto his back. His nine spiritual seas began to rotate as he poured power into Hou Yunfei to help speed up his Tideflow.
Before long, his fourth Tideflow appeared, creating a vortex that connected with the sky above. Soon, earthstring energy was surging toward him from all directions.
Bai Xiaochun wasn't happy with the speed, though, so he continued to rotate his cultivation base and use the Tideflow power of the peak of Earthstring Foundation Establishment to push Hou Yunfei faster and faster. Soon a fifth and sixth Tideflow also appeared.
Bai Xiaochun was the only person who could do something like this, using the special power of nine Tideflows. He also had to pay a steep price for it. Considering he was only helping one person, it was a price he could pay. If he were helping two people, he would slip from his spot at the peak of Earthstring Foundation Establishment. In any case, he had planned to help Hou Yunfei all along.
Hou Yunfei's heart trembled. He knew that what he was experiencing now was unimaginable good fortune, as three Tideflows simultaneously sucked in earthstring energy from everywhere.
"Xiaochun...." Hou Yunfei said, his heart filled with warmth.
Bai Xiaochun smiled. Worried that Hou Yunfei would read too much into the situation, he quickly said, "Bros like us always help each other. Besides, I need this earthstring energy cleared away so I can see things clearly."
However, Hou Yunfei knew that even if that were true, Bai Xiaochun still could have chosen to take advantage of the situation for himself in some way. It was definitely not in vain that Hou Yunfei had chosen to defend Bai Xiaochun earlier.
Bai Xiaochun wanted to help Hou Yunfei form a seventh tideflow, but Hou Yunfei had reached his limit. Furthermore, his three combined Tideflows had caused the sky to once again grow weak!
As it did, Bai Xiaochun could clearly sense... a very faint aura which was quickly becoming more clear.
It was an aura that seemed holy, as if a great Dao were opening its eyes, causing all of the world, all of this heaven and earth, to prostrate in worship!
After double and then triple-checking, Bai Xiaochun began to tremble, and his eyes shone with madness.
"Heaven... Heavenstring energy!!
"The sect leader was right. The Fallen Sword World really does have a strand of heavenstring energy! That means that Heaven-Dao Foundation Establishment is possible!
"Heaven-Dao Foundation Establishment... can add five hundred years of longevity!!!" Bai Xiaochun almost looked as if he had been struck by lightning; his flesh and blood were trembling with excitement.
At the same time, a few hundred kilometers away, Song Que had sat down cross-legged in a mountainous valley, where he was fiddling with his Feng Shui compass. After a moment, his expression flickered, and he looked over in Bai Xiaochun's direction, and the rapidly weakening sky.
His eyes went wide, and his mind began to spin.
"Not good!!" he said, suddenly feeling wracked with anxiety. The Blood Stream Sect had spent years investigating that strand of heavenstring energy. Generation after generation of disciples had provided information, all the way down until Master Limitless reached the peak of Earthstring Foundation Establishment. Only then was the information completed. Overall, the sect had spent several thousand years performing auguries and other calculations to ascertain the method to reveal the heavenstring energy!
Because of that, Song Que's generation was one of the most important in recent history, and he was one of the most important disciples of that generation. He had paid an unimaginable price to win this chance from Master Limitless.
He had made countless preparations, including activating all of the energy nodes, which had taken a huge amount of time. All of that was to ensure that he could collect that strand of heavenstring energy.
The previous plan had been to reach Foundation Establishment on the energy node where he had begun his Tideflows. After the ninth Tideflow ended, he would use its power along with the support of the Feng Shui compass to capture the heavenstring energy, absorb it, and then reach Heaven-Dao Foundation Establishment.
But then Bai Xiaochun interrupted him, and he'd been forced to wipe away the evidence and head to a slightly inferior energy node. The new plan was to rely completely on the Feng Shui compass to slowly capture the heavenstring energy.
How could he ever have imagined that Bai Xiaochun would piece together the clues and provoke the descent of the strand of heavenstring energy? Although Bai Xiaochun was the only one who could sense it at the moment, as the energy continued to descend, all of the cultivators in the Fallen Sword World would be able to detect it.
"Dammit, dammit, DAMMIT!!" he raged, his hair flying around in disarray.
"I can't mess with any more advanced preparations, and I can't wait any longer. By the time that strand of heavenstring energy fixes onto a landing spot down below, it will be too late!
"I don't care if everybody notices, I need to capture that heavenstring energy before it descends completely!!" Seemingly teetering on the edge of insanity, Song Que bit the tip of his tongue and spat some blood onto the Feng Shui compass. Then his hands flashed in a double-handed incantation gesture as he pushed down onto the compass and howled.
"Heavenstring energy, descend here!" As soon as the blood splashed onto the Feng Shui compass, a heaven-shaking, earth-shattering power erupted out, piercing through the air as it shot up into the sky. There, it connected with the heavenstring energy, and began to pull it down!
Moments ago, the heavenstring energy had been slowly descending, but now... it appeared in the open and began to drop down!
The entire sky immediately turned golden, and shafts of dazzling light shot down from the location of the energy strand. It almost looked like a sun descending.
That strand of energy existed above all other things; it radiated the might of a heavenly Dao, and instantly caught the attention of everyone present.
It was completely and utterly unique within the Fallen Sword World!
It was something uncharacteristically rare in the world of cultivation, something stunning and breathtaking that few people would ever have a chance to lay eyes on.
It was... five hundred years of longevity, something above earthstring energy, and the ultimate peak of all Foundation Establishment!
As it took corporeal form, it became something like a wisp of golden smoke that radiated the will of a heavenly Dao, which spread out to fill all of the Fallen Sword World.
All cultivators began to tremble violently as they were filled with an instinctive hunger, something which vastly surpassed that which was mortal. It was something... that came from deep within their blood!
It was a hope that surpassed reason. It was insanity!
"Heaven... heavenstring energy!"
"That's... heavenstring energy!"
"It's mine!" In the blink of an eye, virtually all of the cultivators began to howl with unprecedented excitement and madness!
The wounded Nine-Isles began to tremble as he threw his head back and roared.
Ghostfang, Shangguan Tianyou, and all of the other Foundation Establishment cultivators were going completely mad, and the Qi Condensation cultivators were the same!
All of them sprang into action, converging from all directions!
As of this moment, sects didn't matter; everyone devolved into chaotic fighting.