Chapter 129: The Soul Comforting Spell
Translator: Novel Saga Editor: Novel Saga
Two months passed-by in a flash. The time had arrived when Shi Mu had to undergo the second Blood and Marrow Cleansing process of the Art of Breeding a Strong Evil Ape.
He had already prepared himself mentally for this process. But, the internal torment of this pain was far more intense than the one he had experienced during the first cleansing process. Shi Mu was an extremely strong person with an inhuman perseverance and an unyielding disposition. However, the excruciating pain was too much for him to endure.
Fortunately, he had stepped into the fifth level of the Art of Breeding Heavenly Elephants. This Art had always helped him in protecting his veins and arteries. Therefore, he could manage to endure such a devastating pain till the end.
He beamed with happiness as he realized that his body had become even more tenacious. His physical strength had also improved unimaginably. He had achieved this feat only after the successful completion of the second layer of the Art of Breeding a Strong Evil Ape.
The strength, speed and tenacity of his body had increased by two-third of the total strength he possessed before he began to practice of the Art of Breeding a Strong Evil Ape.
This realization pumped-up his confidence. Therefore, he continued to practice so that he could ascend to the third level as soon as possible.
He strengthened himself once again for the third wave of pain after a period of three months. However, he found out that he wasn't as fortunate as he was during his previous two sessions.
In Shi Mu's stone room...
Shi Mu sat cross-legged on his stone bed. An extremely painful expression could be seen across his face.
The upper part of his body was bare, and it was smeared in blood. It seemed as if someone had been cutting at his muscles with a knife that had an inch-deep sharp edge. Each pore of his body was spurting out blood in a continuous manner. Even his bed was soaked in blood.
Shi Mu also felt an unbearable numbness in marrow; it was mixed with itchiness as well. It seemed as if his marrows were being gnawed and devoured by hundreds of ants.
The intensity of the pain was almost double of the previous times'.
The psychological pain he suffered was so torturous that Shi Mu was almost on the verge of a collapse.
Shi Mu felt as if a layer of darkness had covered his eyes. Then, he collapsed on the spot.
Shi Mu regained his consciousness after an unknown period of time. He tried to shake his head in an attempt to shake-off the dizziness and heaviness that he felt. But, he couldn't move.
Shi Mu was startled. He touched his body and realized that a layer of long white hair had sprouted all over his body. Surprisingly, he had entered his dreamland again; he had already transformed into the mystical white ape.
However, he was surprised to notice his new surroundings. He wasn't at the familiar cliff with a huge rock on its top. It was rather a huge open space that was surrounded by boundless sea of a vast and verdant forest.
A vast forest could be seen in the distance. The trees in the forest were extremely wide; so much so that a single tree would require dozens of people to surround it from all sides. Moreover, they were thousands of feet high. It looked as if the towering trees were stretching into the sky above the boundless sea of clouds.
Suddenly, a loud rumble shook the earth. This explosion pulled Shi Mu's consciousness back into the ape's body.
Shi Mu realized that the white ape wasn't practicing the Moon Swallowing Art as before. Instead, most of its body was buried in the ground. Only its hairy head stuck out from its surface.
In addition, the white ape was in the center of numerous strange charm characters and patterns drawn on the ground. These densely-packed characters and patterns were exuding intermittent bursts of dazzling silver light - like a vast sky full of stars.
These Heavenly patterns and characters were extended in all directions; they constituted a huge magic formula. But, it was difficult to see the magic spell clearly owing to the hazy light.
Two yellow-cloaked giants stood on the either side of the huge formula. They were hundred feet tall and were as sturdy as two small mountains. They had shiny bald heads; not a single hair could be seen on their heads. They looked extremely ugly with ghastly facial features - like that of a ferocious ghost. Several muscles were protruding out from every part of their bodies. Glittering silver characters were drawn on the surface of their yellow cloaks.
The two of them bore an expressionless look on their faces. Both of them held the hilt of a hundred feet long and bright-silvery iron hammer in their hands. The two giants were pounding their hammers at a certain point in the magic spell in a continuous manner.
An earthshaking rumble was produced every time their hammers hit the ground. The surface of the gigantic hammers would shoot out a beam of silver light into the huge magic spell at the same time. This would stir-up the silver lights on the surface of the spell. Then, these lights would dangle in a wild manner.
Shi Mu was at the center of the formula. He could feel an intermittent burst of vibration in the ground around him. In addition, he felt as if a strange and cold energy had shrouded him, and was squeezing him in a continuous manner; this strange energy felt like a freezing cold liquid.
The extrusion-force of the strange energy grew stronger as the speed of the sledgehammers grew quicker.
Meanwhile, Shi Mu felt that the temperature of his body was declining. Then, the boundless strange energies started to penetrate his body through the white ape's pores; the strange energies felt like countless tiny needles.
The white ape contorted its face in agony, and issued a shrill screech.
The tiny cold energies intruded into the ape's body. Then, they started to shroud its vital organs. It felt as if thousands of tiny needles were incessantly pricking at its internal organs. The inexplicable suffering Shi Mu was enduring through the ape was tormenting to the extent that he wanted to die.
This inexpressible pain was even more frightening for Shi Mu. It was because the fits of pain he was undergoing currently was several times more excruciating and tormenting than what he had undergone during the Cleansing Process.
A white-haired elderly man sat cross-legged on a dark green cushion that floated in the air dozens of feet away from the huge and sparkling formula. The old man had long-and-white eyebrows and beard.
He looked towards the white ape that was still screaming in pain. His long eyebrows were curved upwards. He pinched his fingers, and started to recite something in a low voice.
He was the same mysterious elderly man who had imparted the Moon Swallowing Art to the white ape earlier in Shi Mu's dream.
Shi Mu was on the brink of another breakdown. This agonizing pain was so torturous that his consciousness had nearly become blurry. He felt as if he was about to pass out in the next few breaths. He was unable to hold anymore since the pain was beyond his capacity to endure.
Suddenly, the sonorous sound of an inexplicable incantation resounded in his ear. It was being recited by the elderly man.
The white ape opened its wide mouth, and started to imitate the elderly man as soon as it heard the incantation. It then began to read the words despite the intolerable pain.
The language of the incantation was extremely strange. But, it sounded familiar to Shi Mu; as if he had studied it thousands of times.
Then, something strange happened.
The pain in Shi Mu's body and spirit began to neutralize as he read the incantation in the form of the white ape. His pain was suppressed in a flash. The lingering pain was still hard to endure. However, it was fairly tolerable now.
Shi Mu was pleasantly surprised by this strange occurrence. But then, he felt dizzy and his eyes rolled back. He had passed-out before he could understand anything.
After some time... in Shi Mu's stone chamber...
Shi Mu opened his eyes. He found himself lying on the bed in his room. He had finally returned from his trance.
He didn't attempt to move. His head was still gripped by a sense of a strange heaviness. An overwhelming dizziness overcame him once again. It was accompanied by a fit of numbness that struck his limbs.
The excruciating pain that he had experienced during the third Bone and Marrow Cleansing session had far surpassed his expectations. This reminded him of Meng Gu's warning. He was the caretaker of the Blood Pavilion. He had warned him that the deadliest disadvantage of the Art of Breeding a Strong Evil Ape was the process of cleansing one's blood and marrow.
Suddenly, his body shuddered as he realized that there was something unusual about his body.
He felt that his physical toughness had once again improved substantially. Moreover, the Yin Qi that was stored in his lower abdomen had increased tremendously.
Shi Mu was once again pleasantly surprised.
He had successfully undergone the third Blood and Marrow Cleansing session.
Suddenly, a strange thought dawned upon him.
He had a feeling that his successful breakthrough was related to the dream he had just seen. He knew that he had managed to cross this hurdle only because of the incantation that white-haired elderly man had recited. It was evident that the Secret Art that elderly man had imparted to him in the dream had played a major role in this breakthrough. It had significantly relieved the pain he was undergoing at that time.
Shi Mu racked his brains in an attempt to recall the incantation that the white ape had learned in the dream. But, his memory seemed to be fuzzy. And, he couldn't recall even a single word.
However, he couldn't give up so easily. He sprang-up from his bed after a momentary consideration. He washed the blood off his body with the clean water that he had prepared beforehand. Then, he changed into clean clothes. After that, he grasped his black blade, and walked out of the stronghold.
It was midnight. And, the bright moon hung in the sky.
Shi Mu followed the familiar path, and arrived in the woods.
He examined his surroundings to ensure that nothing was unusual. After that, he drew his black blade and dug a hole in the open ground. He then jumped into it without any hesitation.
Suddenly, his right palm transformed into a translucent and sparkling fist; it was similar to a piece of jade. He then pounded it forcefully.
Suddenly, the surrounding soil collapsed and buried his body. Only his head was sticking out from the surface of the ground.
Shi Mu closed his eyes, and entered the dreamland once again.
Everything happened just as he had expected. The white ape appeared at the center of the giant formula. Two yellow-cloaked giants stood on either sides of the formula with two mighty hammers in their hands. Their hammers were pounding on the ground in quick succession. Then, the fit of intolerable acute pain befell him as before...
Shi Mu woke-up from the dream with a jolt after a while. And, his forehead was covered in sweat.
However, he didn't crawl out of the pit. Instead, he knitted his eyebrows and tried to recall the incantation he had heard in the dream.
However, he was disappointed. He couldn't remember anything even though his memory had become clearer.
Shi Mu clenched his teeth, closed his eyes and slipped into the dream once again.
He repeated this process over and over again. He would wake-up, and then enter the dream again. He would focus his attention to remember the incantation the white ape was reading in his dream. And, he had to endure severe pain every time he entered the dream. But, his sufferings finally paid-off. And, the incantation gradually became clearer to him.
He finally managed to memorize the strange incantation after thirty-to-forty repetitions.
Three silver characters appeared in his mind as he recited this incantation for the first time - the Soul Comforting Spell.
Shi Mu woke-up from the dream once again. And, he immediately tried to repeat the incantation.
He was exhilarated as he noticed that he had got a good grip on the incantation. Moreover, he could easily read the Soul Comforting Spell in that strange language.
Shi Mu jumped out of the pit. He then straightened his clothes, and advanced towards the stronghold in high spirits.
The sky was still dark. But, the moon had slid down the sky. The shadows of the surrounding trees were swaying under the dim light.
Suddenly, a rustling sound was heard from the distance. It was followed by the sound of footsteps; it seemed as if a person was walking.
Shi Mu's complexion changed. He grasped the black blade, and hid behind a clump of bushes.
The sound gradually grew faint; as if the person was getting farther away.
Shi Mu's complexion changed again. He squinted and quietly advanced towards the source of the sound.
Shi Mu followed the sound for dozens of feet when it suddenly faded away.
Shi Mu's eyes flickered; he stopped dead in his tracks. Suddenly, his nose twitched as a nasty smell of blood entered his nostrils.
Shi Mu's complexion changed once again. He advanced towards the source of the smell, and arrived near a heap of rocks. He was startled as he saw what lay there.
A spotted leopard lay in the pile of rocks. It was a huge leopard; it was almost ten feet long. The skin and fur around its neck was badly mutilated. Shi Mu could clearly see the bloodstains on its neck. It seemed that it had died rather recently.
But, Shi Mu was dumbstruck as he noticed that the leopard's corpse was in a shriveled state; as if its spirit had been sucked out.
Shi Mu moved towards the corpse in order to examine it. Suddenly, a foul wind blew from behind him. Then, a furry black claw stretched towards his head from behind.
Shi Mu was taken aback. He turned around like a bolt of lightning. His right hand transformed into a translucent and sparkling fist at the same time. He then wielded his crystalline fist; it turned into a white light to deal with the black claw.
However, the furry claw also turned into a fist, and bumped into Shi Mu's.
'Ping!' a dull thumping sound was heard.
Shi Mu's body shook. He was forced to take a step backwards due to the impact of the collision.
However, this allowed him to see his opponent. It was a grey and giant ape-like monster. The fur around its mouth was smeared with blood. It seemed that it was the one who had sucked the leopard's blood.
The grey monster had also been sent flying into the air when their fists had collided. But, it hadn't been injured. It rolled on the ground for a moment, and quickly got back to its feet. Its bloodshot eyes glowered at Shi Mu in a vicious manner. The trace of a blood-thirsty look could be seen in its bloodshot eyes.