Chapter 326: Lesser Tribulation
Translator: Irene Editor: TYZ/CakeHermit
Boom, boom, boom!
As if a monster was underground, the ground shook along with the elemental energy waves.
The audience in the hall couldn't stand properly on their feet. They glanced around and saw the shock in each other's eyes.
Ai Hui asked aloud, "Lou Lan, what's going on?"
"It might be a Lesser Tribulation! Ai Hui!" Lou Lan replied loudly.
What was that? Everybody was stunned. They'd never heard of such a thing.
Lesser Tribulation? Ai Hui was also stunned. He'd come across this term a lot in ancient books from the Cultivation Era. Lesser Tribulations had been common in that era. For example, when cultivators broke into higher realms, all sorts of Tribulations might befall them. The birth of some powerful weapons and elixirs could also face Tribulations.
In the cultivators' understanding, Tribulations were God's test.
There were Great Tribulations and Lesser Tribulations, and some powerful Tribulations which intimidated even the strongest cultivators. During that Cultivation Era, countless cultivators were destroyed, physically and mentally, by these Tribulations.
Later on, the cultivators started regarding Tribulations as a form of reaction when the resonance of elemental energies occurred. The birth of powerful weapons often triggered a response from Nature's spiritual force; that was the so-called Tribulation.
Now, however, it was the Elemental Era and there wasn't any spiritual force, so why would there be a Tribulation?
Was it possible that elemental energy could create Tribulations?
Was this Five Elemental Eight Treasures Porridge so amazing that it could trigger a Tribulation?
As Ai Hui was feeling skeptical over this, the ground shook.
A heavy sound rang from underground as the training hall's ground suddenly sank. Countless cracks suddenly appeared on the surface, just like a spider web.
Everyone was frightened by this sudden change of events.
"This is an Earth Elemental Tribulation!" Lou Lan shouted.
Boom. With another sound, the hall sank further down. It was as if a pair of invisible hands was underground, forcefully dragging them downward.
The strange thing was that, despite the intense shaking of the ground, that big pot of porridge remained motionless, without even a single drop overflowing.
Ai Hui asked urgently, "Lou Lan, any solution?"
Lou Lan stared at the ground, his eyes flickering quickly. Shortly, he replied, "The earth elemental energy underground is isolated from the surrounding elemental energy, so we have to break this barrier in order to connect them!"
While Ai Hui did not really comprehend, Wang Xiaoshan got it instantly. "Let me try!"
He crouched down and placed both palms on the ground. The underground earth elemental energy surfaced and he immediately felt the barrier Lou Lan was talking about. Where the training hall was located and its surrounding land used to be a whole entity, but now they were like pieces cut out from a cake, isolated from the elemental energy in the surrounding ground.
The earth elemental energy deep underground had become exceptionally active, increasing its attractive force and causing the unconnected training hall to sink unceasingly.
The ground surface around Wang Xiaoshan's palms suddenly turned soft like mud and a section rose up and instantly hardened into rock. Countless lumps of mud flew up from a quagmire in front of him like wyverns and a bridge made of rocks was quickly created.
The other end of the rock bridge reached the ground outside the training hall.
The moment the bridge was completed, the ground jerked and stopped sinking.
Wang Xiaoshan remained expressionless as he started building the second rock bridge. Upon construction, the ground started to rise slowly. Upon the construction of the third bridge, the invisible layer of barrier between the training hall and the surrounding soil started to melt like ice.
Two minutes later, the cracks on the ground vanished and the swordsman training hall returned to its usual condition, as if nothing had happened.
Everybody heaved a sigh of relief at the same time.
Lou Lan reminded everybody, "Eight Treasures Porridge contained all five elements, so there might be five types of Tribulation."
"That was Earth Elemental Tribulation, so what's the next one?"
"How magical, this Eight Treasures Porridge is so powerful that it could bring about a Tribulation!"
"Hey, do you feel a little hot?"
Everyone fell into a short daze as they immediately noticed that the surrounding temperature had gone up by quite a bit.
"Fire Elemental Tribulation?"
But where was the fire going to come from?
The sunlight seemed to be getting more glaring. Wait, the Sun?
Everyone started getting a sense of things and quickly raised their heads. Unknowingly, the clouds, which were once above their heads, were no longer there. Instead, the blazing sunlight cascaded down.
It grew increasingly intense and, all of a sudden, a spark flashed across the sunlight.
Fire Elemental Tribulation indeed!
Fatty was just about to speak when an excited voice boomed. "Let me!"
Tian Huzun carried the greasy fire vat and appeared above the audience's heads the next moment.
The citizens of Peace City looked on in shock as a piercing light beam descended from the sky, enveloping Swordsman Training Hall. The beam became increasingly bright and sparks started to flashed past. A minute later, the sparks turned into bright orange flames that descended like rain.
Alarmed cries sounded simultaneously.
What was that?
Peace City's citizens were overwhelmed with shock.
Tian Huzun, who had positioned himself above the training hall, felt inexpressibly excited as the light in his eyes grew. He had a premonition that this Eight Treasures Porridge would be extraordinary. Such exceptional phenomenon occurred even before the porridge was fully cooked.
Plus... these flames were good stuff!
Tian Huzun inhaled deeply, his elemental energy surging. His once crooked and stubby body appeared a little taller and mightier now, and there was no anger on his face. He wrapped the vat with both arms, his body slightly crouching. His overall posture was akin to that of a golden toad carrying a jar that swallowed light.
Then came a long laughter, bold and at ease.
"Come, come, come, everybody come over to my bowl!"
The fire raining down from within the light beam flew towards and into Tian Huzun's fire vat. The red glow from the greasy vat brightened dramatically like a heated iron vat.
The fire rain lasted for a whole five minutes. Tian Huzun's fire vat did not seem all that large, but it was like a bottomless pit, taking everything in without any sign of overflowing.
When the last bits of fire rain flew into the vat, the splendid light beam collapsed without a sound as countless fragments flew about like snow, disappearing into the vat in the blink of an eye.
Tian Huzun laughed out loud, landing on the ground with the fire vat in his hands.
The big fire vat was like a raging volcano. The flames rolled around inside and those nearby could feel the heatwaves coming from it.
"Stay further away. It's not completely refined yet so don't blame me if you guys get hurt."
Tian Huzun was beyond satisfied.
Ai Hui's voice sounded abruptly. "Half each!"
Tian Huzun's body stiffened but he responded nonchalantly, "What do you mean, half each?"
Ai Hui gave a bitter smile. "If you don't offer my share, don't blame me if I do the same."
Tian Huzun knew he couldn't keep it from Ai Hui and could only say, "You're not even a fire elementalist so what do you need this for?"
Ai Hui couldn't be bothered. "Are you giving it or not?"
Tian Huzun was bleeding inside but he clenched his teeth and replied, "Yes! Half each!"
Tong Gui and Yu Jin were utterly shocked by what they'd just seen. It was even more mind-blowing than whatever Tribulations had just occurred. Ai Hui had actually talked to Tian Huzun so boldly? Ai Hui had actually threatened Venerable Volcano!
Ai Hui stopped caring about Tian Huzun as he turned his attention to Shi Xueman. "Iron Lady, it will be your turn soon."
Earth Elemental Tribulation, Fire Elemental Tribulation... if nothing went wrong, the next should be Water Elemental Tribulation.
The reappearance of this nickname caused Shi Xueman to feel somewhat familiar, yet embarrassed. She shot Ai Hui a death glare, snorted, and grabbed hold of her Cirrus as she made her preparations.
Ai Hui muttered to himself, "Iron Lady's temper is rising, eh!"
Fatty played along, saying, "Everyone's just been expelled and aren't feeling good, so don't pour salt on their wounds, Ai Hui!"
"Oh, is that the case!"
Shi Xueman was this close to dashing over and giving them a good beating.
Just then, dark clouds gathered from all directions and quickly turned pitch black. The intense pressure made everyone feel as if a great enemy was approaching.
But time passed without any movements. No lightning, rolling thunder, or rainstorms.
It was beyond silent.
Quickly, Ai Hui and the gang sensed something amiss; it was simply too quiet!
Fatty felt somewhat sleepy. Something within his body was draining away slowly as his eyelids got heavier.
"Stay awake people!"
Ai Hui's shout woke Fatty up with a quiver, but soon after, his whole body felt weaker and weaker as his eyelids became heavier and heavier.
"Do not sleep, this is a land of fantasy!"
Ai Hui shouted once again, anxiety rising within his chest. He too, had almost fallen asleep. Just then, his Skyheart Flaming Lotus Lamp had activated itself, thus jolting him awake.
The Skyheart Flaming Lotus Lamp's spontaneous activation made Ai Hui realize that this was the land of fantasy.
While the Skyheart Flaming Lotus Lamp could shield him from the effects of the fantasyland, it wasn't able to do the same for the rest.
What to do?
Ai Hui caught a glimpse of Iron lady from the corner of his eye and was stunned. She held onto her spear, her eyes clear and bright. She seemed to be completely unaffected by the illusion.
The Cirrus in Shi Xueman's hand transformed into a ball of mist. It started spinning and becoming a whirlpool.
Threads of bright light rays appeared amidst the darkness. They gathered from all over and entered the mist-formed whirlpool in Shi Xueman's hand.
It was as if the mist-formed whirlpool was infected with the clouds, causing it to become bright and multi-colored. Shi Xueman maintained an extremely stern expression.
When the last wisp of light entered the whirlpool, Shi Xueman opened her palms and caught it.
The mist-formed whirlpool reappeared and turned into a cloud spear, one that was completely different from Cirrus. A pitch-black, veined pattern was now on the spear's snow-white body. There was an additional multicolored cloud within the azure spearhead.
Ai Hui could see the grave expression on Shi Xueman's face.
As if noticing Ai Hui's troubled gaze, Shi Xueman blurted, "I'm fine."
Ai Hui gave her a nod. "Don't be careless," Ai Hui reminded.
Feeling the concern in Ai Hui's voice, Shi Xueman felt indescribably delighted. She nodded in understanding.
The surrounding darkness retreated like waves and the dark clouds overhead vanished.
Many woke up, as if from a dream, not knowing what had happened. People like Tian Huzun and Tong Gui, however, had serious faces as they were aware of the danger that had just passed.
Yu Jin suddenly spoke up. "It was an illusion."
"Yeah, a very powerful illusion." Tong Gui spoke from behind his mask. His tone was grave as he'd experienced its power for himself.
Just that... the Central Pine FAction was indeed extraordinary!
In a complex frame of mind, he diverted his gaze toward Ai Hui.
Everyone was feeling tense. Two more Tribulations!