Chapter 355: Bruiser's Tribulation!
Bai Xiaochun felt a lump forming in his throat.
"Don't do this kind of thing again, okay!" he said loudly. "I'm your father! Are kids supposed to protect their dad? No! I'm supposed to protect you! Wait until I'm old and feeble, then you can protect me!
"Also, don't just disappear next time. If you want to go do something, say something to me first!"
Eyes glittering, Bruiser nudged Bai Xiaochun with his head, then dropped down, rolled over onto his back, and stuck his tongue out. He looked very charming, causing the warm feelings inside of Bai Xiaochun to grow even stronger.
Reaching out, he sent some of his Heaven-Dao Gold Core aura into Bruiser, straightening out his qi passageways. Bruiser hummed contentedly, and even reached his head up and licked Bai Xiaochun's face.
After healing Bruiser's internal injuries, Bai Xiaochun looked at the wounds on his body, then produced a large quantity of medicinal pill for him to consume.
Each and every one of those pills could be sold for quite a few spirit stones, but when it came to Bruiser, Bai Xiaochun wasn't stingy at all. The main thing he was worried about was making sure that Bruiser's injuries didn't worsen.
After consuming the medicinal pills, Bruiser bared his teeth in a fond smile. As of this moment, Bruiser and Bai Xiaochun looked very much like family.
Bai Xiaochun went on to scold Bruiser a bit more, and Bruiser wagged his tail and continued to rub up against Bai Xiaochun. Eventually, Bai Xiaochun didn't have the heart to reprimand him anymore.
After they went back into the immortal's cave, Bruiser's wounds continued to fade away, and the breakthrough aura on him grew even stronger.
Bai Xiaochun could tell that Bruiser was definitely on the verge of breaking through to Core Formation. Core Formation was of great significance to battle beasts. Although battle beasts' Tribulations weren't like cultivators', they were still dangerous. Furthermore, Bruiser was a beast king, so his Tribulation would be different from that of ordinary battle beasts.
Worried, Bai Xiaochun went to seek the counsel of Zheng Yuandong. After all, Bruiser was very important to the River-Defying Sect as a whole, and especially the Spirit Stream Division. Zheng Yuandong immediately issued a Dharmic decree, identifying the peak of Mount River Defiance as the location where Bruiser would attempt to step into Core Formation.
A large number of spell formations were set up, and work went underway to gather the spiritual energy of heaven and earth in that location. In addition, a large number of Core Formation cultivators were called upon to stand as Dharma protectors.
Even Patriarch Li Zimo, at Bai Xiaochun's request, ended his session of secluded meditation to also stand as Dharma protector.
Bai Xiaochun paid visits to the other three divisions as well, and as a result, they all offered assistance. The Blood Stream Division provided several precious treasures designed for transcending tribulation, and the Pill Stream Division assigned over a thousand disciples to concoct pills.
As for the Profound Stream Division, they were the ones tasked with creating special spell formations on the mountain peak.
The power of all four divisions had been called on for this special occasion of Core Formation. It was enough to make any ordinary disciple envious. Of course, some of that had to do with Bruiser being a beast king, but more of it was because of Bai Xiaochun's status.
Seven days later, when Bruiser was completely healed, and the aura of an imminent breakthrough was strong, rumbling sounds echoed out from the summit of Mount River Defiance.
Heaven and earth shook, and the clouds converged, along with intense, thunderous rumblings. Bruiser took his place on the altar at the mountain's summit, throwing his head back and roaring into the heavens, a roar that seemed capable of piercing the clouds.
The cultivators of the River-Defying Sect were shaken, and quite a few people flew up to see what was happening.
"Bruiser's reaching Core Formation!!"
"Beast king Core Formation is so impressive!"
"Beast kings are rare enough, and Bruiser is like a beast king among beast kings! Of course this is going to be extraordinary!"
As the discussions raged, the battle beasts in the Spirit Stream Division began to howl in support of Bruiser. The Heavenhorn ink dragon appeared, looking up into the sky, and then over at Bruiser, nervousness and anticipation gleaming in its eyes.
Bai Xiaochun stood next to Bruiser, eyes sparkling. Of course, he was standing as Bruiser's primary Dharma protector.
Suddenly, the clouds converged together, and a black lightning bolt appeared, which immediately began to descend toward the altar on Mount River Defiance.
Roaring, Bruiser launched into the air, refusing to draw help from the spell formations or the surrounding Core Formation Dharma protectors.
As he closed in, he viciously head-butted the lightning bolt.
Heaven and earth trembled as the lightning bolt shattered into countless sparks which rained down in all directions. Bruiser howled in delight, turning to look proudly at Bai Xiaochun before looking back up into the sky.
In response to Bruiser's smug behavior, Bai Xiaochun cleared his throat. After all, it almost seemed like something he would do. Inside, his anxiety was mounting.
"Stay focused!" he called out. "If things get out of hand, get back down here. Don't worry, it won't be a loss of face...."
In almost the exact same instant that the words left his mouth, a second lightning bolt began to fall. Even as Bruiser bashed into it, destroying it, a third lightning bolt appeared, then a fourth and a fifth.
Each of the lightning bolts was larger than the one before it, and they descended toward Bruiser with incredible speed. Trembling, Bruiser roared and continued to face them head-on.
The third lightning bolt sent Bruiser tumbling back down to the ground, where he landed inside the spell formation. Just when Bai Xiaochun was about to hurry forward to help, Bruiser gobbled up some of the medicinal pills that had been placed nearby. Eyes blazing red, he threw his head back and let out an enraged roar, then shot back up into the air, rocketing up with incredible speed, a beam of light surrounded by shocking violet flames.
Then, astonishingly, he actually slammed into the Tribulation clouds up above!
Bai Xiaochun took a deep breath; Bruiser seemed even crazier than he himself.
Even Patriarch Li Zimo was surprised to see what was happening, and the Core Formation cultivators who flanked him in midair were also shocked by Bruiser's valiance.
Disciples from the other four divisions who were observing the event were crying out in shock.
"This... this is incredible!!"
"Heavens! Is Bruiser going to destroy the Tribulation clouds?!"
Even as their voices rose up, the clouds seethed as a seventh, eighth, and ninth lightning bolt began to build up power. Then, gasps rang out as Bruiser yet again slammed into the cloud layer.
The clouds collapsed, and the three bolts of Tribulation Lightning exploded, sending out a powerful shockwave that left all the onlookers astonished.
Amidst the collapsing clouds, Bruiser rapidly grew in size until he was 600 meters long, a sea of violet flames surrounding his feet as he threw his head back and let loose a long cry.
As his cry echoed out, he continued to grow larger, his body radiating intense energy of heaven and earth. It was as if he were experiencing a baptism of sorts, and as a result, an aura spread out from him the likes of which was the subject of ultimate respect. It was the aura of a beast king!
It grew stronger and more powerful until all hearts trembled in response. As for Bai Xiaochun, his excitement was continuing to mount.
As the beast king aura raged, and the energy of heaven and earth converged, a violet-colored Core could be seen forming above Bruiser.
It radiated scintillating light, sending out a medicinal aura that left everyone in the area feeling refreshed and energized.
Bai Xiaochun was getting even more nervous. Seven days earlier, he had consulted the ancient records, as well as Patriarch Li Zimo, and had come to find that battle beast Core Formation usually didn't involve Tribulation Lightning. That only came with beast king Tribulation.
After the Tribulation Lightning was when heaven and earth formed the Core, which Bruiser would then consume. That was actually the most dangerous part of the process.
Because the beast king aura formed a natural core of heaven and earth, it could be used by other cultivators or beasts for numerous purposes. Whether it was for cultivators to concoct spirit medicines, or for other beasts for use as a second core, it was something intrinsically attractive to many. In fact, if another beast managed to wrest it away, they could refine their own blood and gain a chance to rise up to the level of a beast king!
Even as Bai Xiaochun looked on nervously, and the Violet Core was moments away from condensing completely, a cry echoed out that could shake heaven and earth!
It seemed capable of piercing metal, of stabbing directly into the heart and mind.
Off in the distance, a flying snake could be seen, fully 3,000 meters long. It shot through the air toward Bruiser's Violet Core, eyes radiating sinister light. Shockingly, this snake had an aura similar to Bruiser's!
This flying snake was another beast king!