Editor: Dhael Ligerkeys
Despite Qiao Yun’s desperate struggles, she was unable to stop the double Sharp Edge Inviolable from piercing right through her heart.
In her last moment before death, she suddenly realized something and looked at Lu Ye in disbelief. “They… they’re with you!”
It was the only explanation as to why the Xianyuan City Watch had attacked her but not Lu Ye. Not only that, they were the reason their perfect ambush had fallen apart completely. Otherwise, Chu Qing would’ve gotten her revenge already.
Qiao Yun was no idiot. It didn’t take much effort for her to put two and two together.
What horrified her was that a cultivator had somehow colluded with the Xianyuan City Watch. She could not imagine what would happen if Lu Yi Ye was allowed to continue like this. She had to warn her comrades no matter what.
She raised her hand and tried to send a message through her Battlefield Imprint, but Inviolable flashed once in her heart before blooming into a ball of energy spikes. Burster instantly turned her insides into mush.
Qiao Yun’s entire body trembled a little. The light in her eyes faded rapidly after that.
Amber appeared out of seemingly nowhere and leaped onto Lu Ye’s shoulder. The reason it hadn’t made an appearance throughout the battle was because it was controlling the Ghost Spirits from the shadows.
Unfortunately, even simple orders required a certain degree of control.
The surrounding sentries dissipated into Spiritual Light before returning to Amber’s body. The only Ghost Spirit still standing in the open was Yi Yi.
Without the Spirit Shackling Rope to keep her up, Qiao Yun’s massive body hit the ground like a landslide. Lu Ye grabbed her Storage Bag before running toward the distance.
Right now, both the streets and the rooftops were covered in thick fog. Some sort of strange aura was seeping out of the fog as well.
Lu Ye barely took a couple of steps when a humanoid creature suddenly burst out of the fog and attacked him.
In fact, Lu Ye was incredibly familiar with this scenario. Every time he fought inside the Rift of Illusions, his opponents—cultivators that seemed to be covered in fog—would rush out from the fog and attack him. Every time he killed one of them, a stronger foe would take their place. They wouldn’t stop coming until he was dead.
The humanoid creature attacking him right now was completely covered in fog, making it impossible to determine their appearance or even their gender. They looked exactly the same as the fog creatures inside the Rift of Illusions.
This discovery strengthened his belief that his Mystic Fruit was connected to the Lost City of Xianyuan. For now, he still didn’t know what that connection was.
Just in case, he turned around and swung at the humanoid creature. Since the enemy was only a Seventh-Order cultivator, he easily cleaved them in half and returned them into fog. However, another enemy rushed out of the churning fog to engage him, and their aura was a tad stronger than the one he just killed. This time, Lu Ye did not hesitate to run like hell.
He was now absolutely certain that these humanoid creatures were the same as the ones he fought in the Rift of Illusions. Their numbers were endless, and they would only grow stronger each time he defeated them, so there was no point remaining at this place for even a second longer.
He tried rushing into the nearest building and closed the door, but the fog passed right through it as if it didn’t exist. Lu Ye cursed under his breath when he saw this. He already knew from the information he bought that only houses with lanterns on the entrances could function as a shelter, but it was still annoying considering his current circumstances.
He cut down the humanoid creature blocking his way and ran back out to the streets.
Every once in a while, he would run into a stretch where one or both sides of the street was covered in fog. And every time he passed by these stretches, humanoid creatures would emerge from the fog and chase after him. It wasn’t long before he had a tail of dozens of fog creatures.
He knew he couldn’t keep running like this. At this rate, he would have an entire army of fog creatures breathing down his neck. If they caught up with him, he was going to die even with the help of his Xianyuan City Watch.
Lu Ye yelled and reached out toward her.
The girl immediately caught his meaning and passed him all the loot she had recovered from the battlefield. She then plunged head first into Amber’s body.
Next, Lu Ye retrieved what looked like a wooden bracelet from his Storage Bag; a Spirit Artifact. He then injected it with Spiritual Power.
As he rounded a corner, he abruptly stopped in his tracks and pulled the bracelet down his wrist. Something incredible happened. A circular ripple spread out from the bracelet and covered Lu Ye’s entire body. Then, his entire figure distorted for a second before disappearing completely.
Not a moment too soon, his pursuers burst out of the corner and tried to continue the chase. However, Lu Ye was nowhere to be seen. After running circles around the area like headless flies for a bit, they finally went away as if they had given up the chase.
Lu Ye did not move a muscle, however. In fact, he was doing everything he could to slow his breathing and suppress the circulation of his Spiritual Power to the max. It would be terrible if he was discovered at the last moment.
Lady Yun was the one who gave him the miraculous Spirit Artifact. When she learned that Lu Ye was going to enter the Inner Circle, Lady Yun had given him two objects. The first one was the Nine Realms Scroll, a Spirit Artifact made to trap or kill enemies. The second one was the Concealment Bracelet, a self-preservation Spirit Artifact.
The Nine Realms Scroll was a Spirit Treasure, and Lu Ye currently wasn’t strong enough to utilize its full power. That was why Lady Yun sealed off ninety percent of its power to make it usable.
The Concealment Bracelet wasn’t a Spirit Treasure. In fact, its grade was subject to debate. There was no denying it was a very special Spirit Artifact, however. For example, it could turn its user invisible.
Lady Yun had forged it using an incredibly rare Spirit Wood Core as the body, a Concealment Glyph as the core, and a few more Glyphs as the support. The result was a Spirit Artifact that was borderline priceless.
If the Nine Realms Scroll was an offensive Spirit Treasure, then the Concealment Bracelet was a defensive Spirit Artifact. It was clear from this that Lady Yun truly cared for his safety. She wasn’t planning for her successor to die, now or ever.
While it wasn’t difficult to achieve total concealment—all high level ghost cultivators could turn themselves invisible—the ability was almost unique to ghost cultivators, or more accurately, those who had communed with the Nether. Every other cultivation faction had a much, much harder time achieving the same effect.
One method every cultivation faction had access to was a Spirit Talisman Paper called the Concealment Talisman Paper, but it was both expensive and incredibly rare. Not even the Vault of Providence had any in stock right now.
Of course, invisibility was hardly an unbeatable skill. All cultivators possessed enhanced perception, and the stronger they were, the greater their perception. While ghost cultivators were experts in concealment and assassinations, a cultivator with sufficiently powerful perception could still detect them.
Still, Lady Yun had basically granted him a ghost cultivator’s special ability with the Concealment Bracelet. Its only flaw was that he could not move after activating the Spirit Artifact. It was also why Lu Ye hadn’t used it until now, and he still wouldn’t have used it if he wasn’t being chased by an endless horde of fog creatures.
The lack of mobility meant that a single wide-range spell was all it took to expose him. Luckily, his pursuers were mindless creatures just like the normal sentries of the Xianyuan City Watch. After he was sure they were completely gone, Lu Ye finally moved and resumed his escape.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before he was being chased by the humanoid creatures once more. The only silver lining was that the Xianyuan City Watch that should be patrolling the city were nowhere to be seen. It looked like they were avoiding the humanoid creatures as well.
After he had run far enough, Lu Ye used the Concealment Bracelet and turned invisible once more. He was able to ditch his pursuers just like the last time before continuing forward. This situation repeated a couple of times until finally, he found a building with a lantern on its entrance.
Lu Ye ran straight to the building and pushed open the door without hesitation. As he stepped in though, a massive shadow suddenly loomed over him and attacked him!
Lu Ye immediately lifted his saber and struck his attacker. However, he heard a clang that sounded like metal and saw literal sparks flying across his vision when the attack connected. He looked up just in time to see a giant of a man bringing down a paper fan-sized palm toward his head. The attack wasn’t quick, but the air pressure alone told him how powerful it was.
Lu Ye’s eyes twitched. Today was turning out to be a ridiculously unlucky day. First, the Rift of Fortune he entered did not really fit its name. Second, the only two body tempering cultivators he fought today were abnormally strong. Qiao Yun was already an annoyance because her layers of fat were thick enough that his saber couldn’t cut through them, but this guy was even worse. His Sharp Edge-empowered slash had only left a white mark across his chest.
At least Qiao Yun relied on her fat to reduce the force of the enemy’s attack to the utmost degree. This guy was just a goddamn walking hunk of metal. It was completely unfair.
Right as the palm was about to hit his Protection, Amber suddenly let out a cute cry. The palm stopped just above Lu Ye’s head; the wind strong enough to blow up his hair for a moment. The Inviolable also stopped just inches away from the man’s face.
The massive man glanced back and forth between Amber and Lu Ye. Then, he withdrew his palm and scratched his head.
Suddenly, a spell erupted from Lu Ye’s side. He was just about to dodge out of the way when the hulking man moved his hand in the path of the spell. The fireball was at least the size of a washbasin, but it dispersed into nothing the second it made contact with his palm. Lu Ye couldn’t even sense him channeling his vitality or Spiritual Power. This meant that the body tempering cultivator had dispelled with spell with just his flesh. Lu ye had never met such a tough Spirit Creek cultivator in his life.
“Ju Jia!” An angry voice erupted.
“We know them,” the hulking man responded simply.
Lu Ye looked to the side and saw the short cultivator he met this morning.
As their eyes met, the short cultivator twirled his mustache and exclaimed, “It’s you? I thought you were a Thousand Demon Ridge cultivator. Sorry, sorry.”
That was what he said, but he didn’t look sorry in the slightest. In fact, Lu Ye had the feeling he would’ve killed him first and asked questions later if Ju Jia hadn’t stopped, his affiliation be damned.
After all, killing cultivators from your own cultivation faction gave Contribution Points as well.
Lu Ye could smell blood in the air. He was pretty sure someone had died in this building. He shot the short cultivator a glance but sheathed his saber without a word.
The short cultivator walked up with a smile and said, “Fate must have brought us together, fellow cultivator! To think we would meet again in this accursed city.”
“Mhm,” Lu Ye replied noncommittally before glancing left and right. He then walked to a corner and adopted a meditative position.
Ju Jia walked closer to him while staring at Amber worriedly. His big eyes looked a bit like mini lanterns.
His worry was very simple. The sentries who survived the earlier battle were absorbing Amber’s energy to recover. Naturally, the tiger was looking a little shriveled right now. It was going to take a while before it could regain its strength.