Chapter 906 – The Divine Tree Awakens
The storm howled, but its might was gradually weakening. In this battle, even the tremendous force of nature was affected.
The battle had finally approached its end, but it became even more alarming and even more difficult to determine an outcome!
The Divine Nun of the South Sea backed far away, wanting to take Xiao An away from here. However, an unusually determined voice rang out from behind her, saying gently, “We’ve won.”
The Divine Nun of the South Sea was mildly surprised. Right when she wanted to say something, she heard an earth-shaking rumble. The main peak of Fire Melt mountain swelled up from inside out. A circular shockwave whistled several dozen kilometers away.
Green light spewed out of the crater, rushing into the sky and dyeing the clouds.
The Divine Nun of the South Sea’s face was illuminated too. She was stunned. “That’s…”
Ye Duanhai was shocked. He doubted his eyes. The Myriad Poison Ancestor had… blown himself up!?
Even the Merfolk Queen Gong Yuan and Ji Changfeng who possessed a great grudge against the fire devourers would never proceed with such a bad plan. To a great extent, “granny” had only made that decision because her lifespan was close to running out, her path of cultivation had basically ended, and she was reluctant to sacrifice so many clansmen for nothing, and that had already been surprising enough.
What was the Myriad Poison Ancestor thinking?
Everyone could not help but look at Li Qingshan. The Myriad Poison Ancestor seemed to have come and assisted them because of him. Was this due to his order as well?
Probably even the King of Southern Yue and the Great Banyan Tree King were unable to make a great demonic cultivator who treasured his life above all else to willingly throw it away. It was exactly because of that that the three fire devourers were not prepared at all.
Just inches away from him, Gong Yuan also immediately felt like she could no longer read this man who had once connected with her mentally and dual cultivated with her. She could not help but frown slightly. What had he used to achieve this?
Li Qingshan stood with his arms crossed, gazing at the crater without budging. The corner of his lips curled into a slight smile as he scoffed coldly. “You wanted to play around with self-destruction, so I played around with you. Do you really think I’m that easy to frighten?”
The effect from the Myriad Poison Ancestor detonating himself seemed to be much worse than “granny”. There was no terrifying power that could swallow everything, but with the containment of the crater, the power was instead much more condensed, and it was more corrosive in nature. He had unleashed all the poisons he had accumulated and developed over a thousand years.
The red crystals on the interior of the crater turned to reddish-green goo that resembled mud, collapsing and raining down, giving off a sharp stench. Even Gong Yuan felt a little light-headed when she caught a whiff of it. She could not help but be amazed by the potency of the poison.
The fate of the several thousand fire devourers was no different. Their bodies turned to sludge within the green light, only leaving behind their hearts, which also became seeped with blood. Their flames were put out.
However, at the bottom of the crater, the three Fire Devouring Kings assumed a defensive posture with the Divine Fire tablets. Their auras had become extremely feeble, but they were still alive!
“Your lives sure are tough!” Li Qingshan said.
“You wretched, despicable person! Are you bold enough to face me in battle!?”
Zhu Yan was torn with rage, making him curse aloud, but a sense of weakness filled his voice. A faint layer of green covered him as large parts of his skin began to fester, which rapidly spread, eating away his flesh and blood. No matter how great their defences were, it was impossible for them to emerge unscathed when a great cultivator detonated himself from so close.
It did not cause them instant, terrifying damage, but the poison had already invaded their bodies, spreading through them aggressively. If they did not control it, it would definitely be lethal.
From a certain perspective, the effects were slightly better than what Li Qingshan had expected. It made everything else much easier.
“So what if I am? So what if I’m not? I do prefer crushing my opponents in a direct confrontation with my own strength, but I hate losing even more!” Li Qingshan said calmly. He was not the type of person that would always use any means necessary, but when he had to use any means necessary, he would not fret too much. “In short, once I kill the three of you, Fire Melt mountain will be completely annihilated. That’ll only prove that I speak no empty words!”
“I want to kill you! I want to kill you!” Zhu Yan roared furiously, but it only made the poison spread even faster. He wanted to rush over, but Zhu Fen and Zhu Zai firmly stopped him. They bellowed, “King Yan, don’t fall for it!”
In their current state, they could no longer catch up to anyone. They could not even drag their enemies down with them anymore. It only made the poison spread faster.
“Li Qingshan! King of Savages! The devastation of my race will definitely be avenged! We’ll definitely make you die in flames, to never be reborn!” Zhu Fen cursed him in the most vicious way possible.
Li Qingshan said, “Dying in flames is my fate, just like dying to the virus is the fate of you fire devourers. What, are you prepared to escape?”
Zhu Fen was indeed prepared to escape. They had not entered dire straits just yet. As long as they fled into the magma and used the flames of the earth to suppress the poison, they still had a very good chance at surviving.
At the same time, five hundred kilometers away, the Silver Dragon King hovered above the cloud layer.
In a silvery-white room, the King of Southern Yue muttered to himself, “Do you think the three of them will completely pledge their loyalty to me if I kill Li Qingshan?”
“They won’t,” said the tiny banyan tree bonsai placed on the table.
“Why?” The King of Southern Yue seemed to be eager to get a piece of the action, wanting to prove he could kill Li Qingshan, and not just Li Qingshan, but Gong Yuan and the other two Merfolk Kings as well. That way, he could conveniently destroy the royal court of the Merfolk. Having lost their clansmen, it was impossible for the fire devourers to develop and grow in strength again. That way, he could completely eliminate the potential problems in the south.
“After losing all of their clansmen, do you have any other methods to maintain control over the three of them?”
“I don’t.” The King of Southern Yue thought about it. He was bold enough to give the Divine Fire tablets to the fire devourers because he had thought through everything meticulously. The fire devourers might have been untameable dogs, but they were not mad dogs at the very least. He was absolutely confident they would not bite back at him. It was definitely much easier for him to take down Fire Melt mountain if he wanted to. He did not even have to use the Silver Dragon King. The fire devourers were equivalent to hostages. Now that they were all dead, there was nothing holding back the three Fire Devouring Kings anymore even though it had completely eliminated Fire Melt mountain as a potential source of trouble.
“And have you considered the consequences if you fail to kill Li Qingshan?” The Great Banyan Tree King added.
“Fine then! I’ll listen to you again then, fellow. Actually, I’m also very curious just what kind of person a kid like him will turn out to be once he completely matures.”
The King of Southern Yue completely dismissed his thoughts of killing Li Qingshan for good. If it was only Li Qingshan, then so be it, but with the Great Banyan Tree King who was renowned for his meticulous calculations as a guarantor, the difficulty in killing him was immediately magnified. Regardless of the outcome, there were downsides, and once he failed, it was very possible for him to have made a terrifying enemy for himself.
“Let’s just wait and see!” the Great Banyan Tree King said mildly.
“Oh right, is the divine wutong tree still alive?”
“Don’t you want the divine wutong tree? I’ll give it to you!” Zhu Yan calmed down a lot, but he still found this difficult to accept, so he swung his Divine Fire tablet towards the divine wutong tree.
“You fucker!” Li Qingshan’s face changed too. He had gone to such great lengths exactly because of this divine wutong tree. When he ordered the Myriad Poison Ancestor to blow himself up, the exact matter that worried him the most was destroying the tree, but fortunately, the divine wutong tree was extremely tough. The barrier of light it held up had only dimmed slightly, but who knew what would happen once it received a malicious attack like this.
“You mustn’t, king Yan!” Zhu Fen tried to stop him in a hurry, but it was already too late.
Metal thrummed, and the divine wutong tree shuddered violently. All the leaves on the tree swayed together, and a deep gash appeared on the trunk, oozing with bright-red sap that resembled blood.
In that moment, the consciousness deep within awakened from its lengthy slumber.
Suddenly, a tall, skinny man in fancy clothes with long, free-flowing hair appeared beneath the wutong tree. His facial features were simple and unsophisticated, and his bearing was elegant. He glanced at the wound on his arm and did not show any anger. He asked Zhu Yan, “What for?”
Zhu Yan was alarmed, but before he could even say anything, he felt a tremendous pain in his chest. He lowered his head, only to see the man’s slender, fair arm had passed through his chest, digging out a hot, scarlet-red heart. An intense feeling of emptiness filled his chest. “You’re…”
“Why bother?” The elegant man sighed. He did not possess any murderousness at all. Many roots grew from his hand, wrapping around the fiery-red heart.
Zhu Yan’s aura rapidly declined. Soon, it was no stronger than a regular fire devourer’s. No longer suppressed, the poison immediately erupted, and he fell backwards. When he reached the ground, he was already a puddle of goo.
Li Qingshan suddenly realised he had mistaken something. The divine wutong tree did not belong to the fire devourers. It was also a Daemon King, and one with a startlingly powerful cultivation.
All things had spirits, able to absorb the spiritual qi of the world and turn into daemons. That was something that everyone understood. As a daemon spirit from the same age as the phoenix, the divine wutong tree could not be compared with any regular Daemon King after several tens of thousand years of cultivation and accumulation even when trees cultivated relatively slowly, let alone the fact that it was regarded as a “divine tree”, so it had always been equivalent to an exotic or spiritual beast, possessing power that far exceeded regular Daemon Kings.
The fire devourers had turned this little garden into a holy land, but even Fire Devouring Kings were forbidden from climbing up into the phoenix’s nest on the tree. Why wouldn’t there be a reason for all of this?
However, the divine wutong tree was aloof in nature. He did not like to communicate with others like the Great Banyan Tree King. A single slumber could last centuries or even millennia for him, so it was unavoidable for people to mistake it to possess no consciousness.
In the past, when the phoenix flew and the fire devourers occupied Fire Melt mountain, the divine wutong tree had once set down three rules. As long as they did not try to destroy it, affect its cultivation, or climb up into the phoenix’s nest, they would not get in each other’s way. He allowed them to build their royal court here and did not even mind when they cultivated beneath the tree or picked the wutong fruit to eat.
However, only the oldest, Zhu Fen, had a relatively clear understanding regarding these matters. It had become rather blurred even for Zhu Zai. As for Zhu Yan, during the millennia or so he cultivated on the main peak, he had never seen the divine wutong tree do anything. By treating it as a holy object, he also subconsciously treated it as an inanimate object. Now that his race had been exterminated, he was overcome with fury, so he wanted to cut down the divine wutong tree and make Li Qingshan’s efforts all go to waste. How could the divine wutong tree allow him to do so?
Zhu Fen both resented Zhu Yan for paving his own path to ruin and blamed the divine wutong tree for being so vicious. He held back the urge to strike. Having lost Zhu Yan’s Divine Tablet of Man, their chances to escape had diminished drastically yet again. If he fell out with the divine wutong tree, then it would be certain death. He could forget about revenge.
He immediately said to Zhu Zai, “Let’s go!”