Chapter 199: Xuemei's Immortal's Cave
Gritting his teeth, Master God-Diviner left his immortal's cave and traded with some fellow sect members to acquire medicinal pills to help his recovery. After hearing the grumblings regarding recent events, he realized that nobody was plotting against him specifically. However, his hatred still simmered. He told the other cultivators that he had divined that this was no natural disaster, but rather, was being perpetrated by a person, who was using some unknown method to absorb the local blood qi.
Master God-Diviner was relatively famous on Middle Peak, so people trusted his explanation. Therefore, the cultivators who had been most adversely affected during the events of the past two nights went out to look for the culprit.
Another two nights passed, but nobody turned up any clues. And yet, the blood qi seemed to be constantly draining away. Killing intent rose up, and soon word began to spread.
"Did you hear about that mysterious cultivator on Middle Peak? Every night he sucks away all of the blood qi from the whole mountain peak!"
"What a psycho! A lot of people have been injured in the middle of their cultivation. Lately, nobody even dares to practice any cultivation at all."
"Who is this guy? Does he have a suicide wish? If people figure out who he is, not even the sect could stop him from getting killed!"
Bai Xiaochun heard a lot of talk like that during the day, and it scared him so much he decided to rest for a few days. But when his cultivation speed slowed, he got anxious and once again ventured outside.
However, many of the Foundation Establishment cultivators had sworn oaths to catch the culprit. On one occasion, Bai Xiaochun even joined one of those groups, and joined in on the cursing, trying to look as angry as possible. Because of that, no one suspected him.
Three more days passed, during which Bai Xiaochun spent his nights trying to find places to absorb blood qi. However, too many Foundation Establishment cultivators were out searching, and he never found a single opportunity.
He spent some more time thinking, and decided that he shouldn't act rashly. A few more days passed, and eventually, the temporary unity of the Foundation Establishment cultivators began to fade. At that point, Bai Xiaochun set out, humming a little tune as he went about absorbing blood qi.
Sticking his chin up, he waved his sleeve and loftily said, "Hmph! You wanna compete with Bai Xiaochun? I've got more experience at this kind of thing than anyone!"
He reaped a great harvest that night. At one point, he passed an area that clearly had much stronger blood qi than the other areas. Delighted, he absorbed some of it, but didn't dare to stay long.
And that was how things went for about half a month. When lots of people were out and about, he would stop. When the numbers thinned, he would go out to absorb some blood qi. His blood sword was becoming more and more solid, and the power of his Undying Heavenly King had already reached that of seven mammoths.
"I'm going to hit ten mammoths soon. The first level of my Undying Heavenly King will be finished, and I'll be able to unleash the Mountain Shaking Bash!!
"Plus, I can feel that the blood sword is almost completely cultivated!!" Bai Xiaochun was starting to get very excited.
As for the cultivators of Middle Peak, they were going mad. They were already vicious people to begin with, but with the half a month of torment provided by Bai Xiaochun, their killing intent grew even more pronounced.
Their nights of cultivation during that time were never stable. That was especially true considering that Bai Xiaochun didn't have a set schedule or route....
The Foundation Establishment cultivators were getting to the point where they couldn't take it anymore. That was especially true of the cultivators who had been tormented by backlashes that left them coughing up blood.
"Who is it?!"
"I'm gonna kill this guy! Dammit! I'm gonna kill him!"
"Is this guy looking to die? Even if my cultivation base is unstable, I'll still skin him alive!!"
All of Middle Peak was in an uproar. Never before in their lives had these Foundation Establishment cultivators experienced anything like this, and during the day, everyone walked around with bloodshot, murderous eyes.
Bai Xiaochun was shocked by what he was seeing. In fact, before he stepped out of his immortal's cave during the day, he would always rub his eyes hard until they turned red. Then, he would make sure to loudly curse the Blood Qi-Thieving Fiend.
Time passed, and none of the Foundation Establishment cultivators gave up on searching for the culprit. Those who were adept at divination and augury did their best to use their powers to uncover who was responsible. But few people were truly skilled in such arts. Master God-Diviner was actually the most famous and skilled, but his injuries made it impossible for him to use his arts. Therefore, all of the lower finger of Middle Peak could do nothing more than stew in fury.
Bai Xiaochun immediately ceased any activities for a few days. When he came back out, he found that there were actually Foundation Establishment cultivators patrolling all of the major areas. Apparently, everyone had truly united in rare fashion to deal with the common problem.
Bai Xiaochun was completely shocked. After walking around for a bit, he finally sighed in resignation. Even as he was dejectedly trying to decide what to do next, he passed a certain area that seemed very quiet, and stopped to look around.
"Nobody's patrolling here?" Blinking, he studied the area cautiously to confirm that no one was in the area. Only then did he remember that this was the location he had passed some time before that had stronger blood qi than usual.
After poking around, he found a seemingly ordinary immortal's cave. He then pulled out a jade slip to check some information, after which his eyes shone brightly.
"How come I never paid attention to this place before? All the immortal's caves in this area are supposed to be empty. I wonder who this place belongs to? Oh well, it won't hurt to take a couple breaths." Licking his lips, he took a deep breath, causing the blood qi in the area to rush toward him. In fact, a huge blast came from the immortal's cave itself. In the end, he got as much blood qi as he would normally get from two or three of the other areas.
"This place is awesome!" Not daring to stay in one place for too long, he quickly left. However, the next night he came back and took two more breaths. He did the same on the third night, and the fourth. To his delight, he found that nothing ever happened, and nobody even went by this particular immortal's cave. Eventually, on the fifth day, he worked up the gumption to take ten breaths.
At long last he was certain that there were no problems, and that nobody was in the immortal's cave. Furthermore, during the day, nobody seemed to care what was happening. And it was the same at night time!
"Hahaha! The heavens do have eyes!" During the night of the sixth day, Bai Xiaochun showed up early and sat down to do his usual breathing. As of this moment, he was ready to complete the first level of the Undying Heavenly King!
As soon as the technique stirred, the blood qi in the area began to rush toward him. Bai Xiaochun waved his hand in grand fashion, quickly absorbing the flow of blood qi. Inside the immortal's cave, everything began to rumble noiselessly. Massive amounts of blood qi surged out, pouring into Bai Xiaochun to fuel the cultivation of the Undying Live Forever Technique. His entire body was sore and tingling, and the buildup of power was very obvious.
Bai Xiaochun got more excited than ever, and suddenly, he was consumed with the desire to simply absorb as much blood qi as he could, without any regard for safety. It was a huge river flowing into him, making him feel almost like he was becoming an immortal.
The truth was that there really wasn't anybody in the immortal's cave behind Bai Xiaochun. It wasn't a very large cave, and seemed temporarily unoccupied. The only thing inside of it was a small, blood-colored bottle.
Sticking out of the top of the bottle was a blood-colored plum blossom. It would only take a glance at it to tell that it was a precious treasure. Beneath the bottle itself was a glowing red spell formation, with the bottle being located at the very center of it.
Closer examination would reveal that there was a small aperture in the very center of the formation, which the bottle fit into perfectly!
The blood bottle contained boundless blood qi, so much that it had formed a liquid, which now filled most of the little bottle.
As Bai Xiaochun absorbed the blood qi, the liquid in the bottle was rapidly draining.
In the time it takes an incense stick to burn, thirty percent of the liquid in the bottle drained away. Even as Bai Xiaochun excitedly absorbed the blood qi, something else happened in another location in the Blood Stream Sect. Somewhere on Ancestor Peak, there was a blood lake that was surrounded by plum blossoms. It looked like a celestial paradise.
Next to the lake was an immortal's cave with a large, green door that emanated powerful pressure. Engraved on the surface of the door was a single, blood-colored plum blossom.
Inside, the immortal's cave was lavishly decorated. Glowing pearls served as lamps, and everything was adorned with spirit stones. In the middle of the immortal's cave, a young woman sat cross-legged in meditation, wearing a blood-colored mask. This young woman was none other than Xuemei!
Suddenly, she opened her eyes and frowned.
"What happened? Why has there been such a shocking reduction in the blood qi in my blood bottle on Middle Peak?!"
The immortal's cave where Bai Xiaochun was absorbing blood qi was Xuemei's official residence on Middle Peak, although she rarely went there. She normally resided on Ancestor Peak. As for the Middle Peak immortal's cave, it was a strange place; her father, Patriarch Limitless, had noticed the place's uniqueness years ago, and had set up a spell formation that made the blood qi there even stronger, far stronger than anywhere else on the lower finger of Middle Peak.
Because of that, she had left a treasured blood bottle there which would slowly absorb the blood qi. Ten years had already passed, and it was almost full. When it was, she could begin to cultivate a certain secret magic of the sect.
Because the blood bottle was connected to her mind, she could sense what was happening to it. Occasionally, it would naturally lose a bit of its blood qi, so she hadn't paid much attention to what had happened over the past few days. But the shocking reduction from just now was occurring much too quickly. In almost the blink of an eye, forty percent of the liquid which had built up was gone.
Xuemei instantly started to get anxious. Her phoenix-like eyes flashing with anger, she rose to her feet and transformed into a beam of light that rumbled through the night, heading from Ancestor Peak toward Middle Peak!
"I need to see for myself what's causing this sudden reduction!"