A second later, the Ghost Refining Sect's Grand Elders also appeared consecutively, respectfully kneeling before their Sect Master as they welcomed his return.
The Ghost Refining Sect Master's gaze swept over the group of people, asking, "Where is the young lord?"
"Replying the Sect Master, the young lord went to cultivate at the Spiritual Pond Palace, should I make a trip over and inform him that Sect Master has returned?" The Infernal Ghost Messenger inquired.
"Since the young lord is cultivating in the Spiritual Pond Palace, there's no need to disturb him. After returning from the Sea of Hell this time, I've more or less determined the location of the Devil King Palace. However, without the devil clan, there is temporarily no way for us to open it." The Ghost Refining Sect Master's voice turned solemn, "Do you know the whereabouts of the Devil Bead?"
"According to the information we've collected, there is a ninety percent chance that the Devil Bead has fallen into Huang Xiaolong's hand." The Infernal Ghost Messenger went on, "Huang Xiaolong is here in the Path to Hell, it's just that we were unable to locate him."
The Ghost Refining Sect Master sounded even more solemn, "Use every means necessary, this Huang Xiaolong must be found! I must get that Devil Bead, there is something essential to me among the treasures left behind by the Devil King."
"Yes, Sect Master!"
"Go and prepare the succession ceremony well. Inform me when the young lord comes out from the Spiritual Pond Palace."
The present members of the Ghost Refining Sect's higher echelon respectfully complied and retreated.
Inside the Spiritual Pond Palace, the Ghost God lunging towards Huang Xiaolong was knocked back by his Earthen Buddha Palm strike, crashing into one of the palace walls. A resounding boom shook the hall.
Under his Earthen Buddha Palm, the ghost qi flowing around the Ghost God roiled violently and a roar of pain escaped its mouth.
The Buddhism energy was the bane of all ghostly creatures and devils.
Although the Ghost Gods refined by the Ghost Refining Sect members were powerful, against Huang Xiaolong's Buddhism force, they would be suppressed just the same.
"You, Buddhism energy! You're from the Bodhisattva Faction!" The Ghost Refining Sect young lord blurted out in shock.
If there was a power in the lower realm that the Ghost Refining Sect had any qualms about, it would the Bodhisattva Faction. It wasn't to say that the Bodhisattva Faction was more powerful than them, it was just because of their cultivation techniques!
The Bodhisattva Faction's cultivation techniques birthed Buddhism energy. Especially after condensing their godhead, a cultivator's godforce would contain Buddhism energy that was able to suppress their Ghost Refining Sect's techniques to a ruthless degree.
Huang Xiaolong remained indifferent and silent. In a flicker, he executed the same Earthen Buddha Palm, but this time it was aimed at the young lord himself.
The Ghost Refining Sect young lord recovered from his shock, his calm returned. A cruel gleam flitted across his eyes as he bellowed, "Blood Prison, Ten Thousand Ghosts Palm!"
A ghostly palm countered Huang Xiaolong's palm strike, causing blood red light to explode in the hall, drowned in a sea of roiling ghost qi.
Nefarious screeching ghosts multiplied as if they were being born from the blood prison itself.
These nefarious ghosts formed a giant black palm with an ancient character for 'ghost' at the center of it, exuding a vast, overwhelming, and terrifying ghost energy.
"Huang Xiaolong, even if you have Buddhism energy, you're fated to die in my hands! This is the Path to Hell, my Ghost Refining Sect's territory, I can freely manipulate the environment's ghost qi. In the end, your Buddhism energy will be suppressed by me!" The Ghost Refining Sect young lord bellowed.
The Blood Prison Ten Thousand Ghosts Palm collided with the Earthen Buddha Palm.
Violent shockwaves rolled out in all directions. Golden luminance pierced the sky, while a bloody light dyed the earth. The nefarious ghosts' wails were carried in all directions by the turbulent shockwaves.
Huang Xiaolong and the Ghost Refining Sect young lord were both forcefully thrown backwards from the impact. The young lord crashed into a stone pillar, completely shattering it, causing the whole palace swayed violently as if it could collapse in the next second.
"You... impossible, how could you have become so strong?!" The Ghost Refiinf Sect young lord forcefully pressed down turbulent blood flow in his body, but he couldn't help looking at Huang Xiaolong with shock and disbelief.
Five years ago, the two of them had battled once. At that time, he played Huang Xiaolong like a fiddle, but now, in a single exchange, he had fallen to a disadvantage!
The peak of mid-Eighth Order Highgod Realm! But at that time Huang Xiaolong was just a peak early Seventh Order Highgod Realm! As these thoughts flashed past his mind, the young lord saw one thousand arms emerge from Huang Xiaolong's back.
Those one thousand arms moved at the same time. Every arm was enshrouded in a radiant golden luminance as great waves of Buddhism energy flooded out from them.
The Ghost Refining Sect young lord paled considerably, no longer hesitating. His body expanded several times at a rapid speed.
"Mad Devil God's Body!"
"Ghost Refining Godly Art!"
The young lord bellowed as he summoned the ghost qi in the surroundings towards him.
In an instant, a terrifying ocean of ghost qi came into existence around him.
Standing at the center of the high waves of ghost qi, the Ghost Refining Sect young lord seemed to be the irrefutable supreme ruler of the underworld, the king amongst ghost kings.
Following that, the blood red light around him expanded, becoming more vivid, integrating with the rush of ghost qi and turning into numerous Ghost Gods. The Ghost God he reared suddenly appeared behind him, combining into one body with the young lord.
Both Huang Xiaolong and the Ghost Refining Sect young lord attacked at the same time.
In a split second, one thousand Earthen Buddha Palm struck out. Blinding golden Buddha luminance and silhouettes of various Buddhas filled the sky.
Resounding clashes thundered in the air one after another.
At one point, the Spiritual Pond Palace could no longer withstand the savage destructive power, exploding into pieces.
After countless exchanges, the Ghost Refining Sect young lord tumbled backwards in the air with blood spurting from his mouth, whereas Huang Xiaolong staggered back again and again for several hundred li before regaining his balance.
"You!" The Ghost Refining Sect young lord glared fiercely at Huang Xiaolong, but just as he opened his mouth to speak, blood gushed up his throat, dyeing the translucent ice-field red.
Huang Xiaolong did not waste time with words. In a flicker, he had already arrived right before the young lord, a fist flying at his face.
Although the God Restricting Golden Silkthread Rope had cut off the Spiritual Pond Palace and its surroundings from the outside world so that others couldn't detect the commotion, anything could happen. Huang Xiaolong had to get the Ghost Refining Sect young lord under his control in the shortest time possible.
Seeing the fist growing larger in his sight, the Ghost Refining Sect young lord abruptly turned around and sped away, giving up on battling Huang Xiaolong further. The thought of escaping sprouted in his mind.
However, he had barely flown far when a golden light flashed before his eyes as he ran into an invisible energy barrier, causing him to bounce back.
Right at this time, Huang Xiaolong's murderous punch arrived behind him.
Sensing great danger, the young lord forcefully twisted his body in the air, wanting to counter with a palm, but he was still a step too late. Huang Xiaolong's punch smashed squarely on his back, sending him flying in the opposite direction.
There was now a deep, bloody hole on the Ghost Refining Sect young lord's back.
"You want to run? I have locked down the surrounding ten thousand li with the God Restricting Golden Silkthread Rope. That's why, no matter what happens here, the people outside won't know a thing." Huang Xiaolong sneered.
The Ghost Refining Sect young lord suddenly burst into laughter, "Huang Xiaolong, my death will alert the entire Ghost Refining Sect. At that time, you still won't be able to leave here alive."
Huang Xiaolong made a scoffing noise, and looked at him with contempt, "Who said I wanted to kill you?"
The Ghost Refining Sect young lord flinched, an ominous feeling gripping his heart.
Half an hour later.
Huang Xiaolong released his grip, throwing the young lord's dried body on the icefield below before letting out a long breath of relief.
Finally, he need not worry about the young lord anymore! Moreover, he had discovered how to open the sect's treasury as well as the method to safely cross the Nightmare Forest.
Similarly to those from the Enforcement Hall, he did not actually kill the young lord, merely causing him to fall into an eternal coma.
Huang Xiaolong changed his facial features and body into the young lord's and flew back in the direction of the Ghost Refining City. He also did not collect the God Restricting Golden Silkthread Rope, having it continue to lock down the Spiritual Pond Palace's surroundings.