Translator: Silavin & Jon
Translation Checker: PewPewLazerGun
Editor and Proofreader: Leo of Zion Mountain & Dhael Ligerkeys
A Void Crack suddenly appeared above the barren peak, and through the crack came the violent Astral Wind.
Mao Zhe was both surprised and shocked.
He was surprised because his speculation was right. The origin of the Astral Wind was really where the exit was. The Astral Wind didn’t belong in the Shadowless Cave Heaven to begin with; instead, it blew into this place from the outside world. Perhaps they could leave the Shadowless Cave Heaven by going past the crack.
However, he was shocked because it was the first time he saw such an intense Astral Wind.
He had lived in the Shadowless Cave Heaven for about 10,000 years, but it was the first time he came across such a violent gale.
On second thought though, it wasn’t so surprising. This place was considered the source of the Astral Wind, so it was expected that the gale here was fiercer than other parts of the Shadowless Cave Heaven.
Mao Zhe could clearly feel the Astral Wind gusting into his Small Universe, bringing his World Force away and undermining his heritage. All of his vitality weltered, and it was as though his bones had softened.
“You’re insane!” Mao Zhe glared at Yang Kai in a way as though he wanted to eat him alive, “Even if you want to die, don’t drag us down with you!”
While he reproached the young man, he kept looking for somewhere that could fend off the Astral Wind. Unfortunately, there wasn’t such a place within his sight. The Astral Wind seemed to have filled the entire universe, and no place was safe.
Yang Kai, however, was just standing in front of the Void Crack. There was an ancient tree behind him that exuded vibrant vitality. He was engulfed in the low-hanging branches and as the Astral Wind gusted through the canopy, the branches swayed lightly but the man inside wasn’t bothered one bit. He just stared silently at the three of them who looked like they were on pins and needles.
Mao Zhe swept a glance over the ancient tree, then his pupils contracted as he shouted, “You’re able to fend off the Astral Wind?”
“What’s so hard about that?” Yang Kai put on a faint smile.
“That’s impossible!” Mao Zhe growled.
Although he wasn’t willing to believe it, what he was seeing wasn’t fake. Yang Kai was just standing outside of the wind source. Supposedly, he would be more severely affected than the others; however, the reality was that within the ancient tree’s range, the Astral Wind was warded off as though it was blocked by an invisible force.
[That’s the reason he’s so confident!] A realization dawned upon Mao Zhe. Just now, he doubted why Yang Kai had come all the way here to look for the exit instead of staying on Twin Spirit Island; after all, the Astral Wind would strike once a month, and every strike could cause immense losses to a cultivator’s Small Universe.
Nevertheless, it now seemed that Yang Kai wasn’t afraid of the Astral Wind.
At that instant, he recalled that Yang Kai had told him to keep it up and he must never beg him for help. The young man was clearly waiting to embarrass him.
Mao Zhe was so infuriated that his murderous intent surged and he roared, “Kill!”
Upon finishing his words, he charged towards Yang Kai.
Without hesitation, Zhou Ya and Geng Qing followed right behind him. The three Mountain Lords had joined forces again as they pounced on the young man in an imposing manner.
They had previously done that on Profound Yang Mountain, but they were eventually defeated by Yang Kai. It wasn’t that they were weak. It was because Mao Zhe believed that he was the strongest cultivator in the Shadowless Cave Heaven that he underestimated Yang Kai. Once a mistake was made, it was hard for him to turn things around.
After the incident, he gave it a thought and reckoned that if he hadn’t been negligent, things wouldn’t have ended up in such a terrible state. Regardless of how powerful Yang Kai was, he hadn’t reached the High-Rank Open Heaven Realm. He was just a Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm Master.
Given the harsh lesson previously, Mao Zhe wouldn’t dare to lower his guard now; therefore, he went all out from the start. His Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm aura shook the World as he attacked.
When Yang Kai, who was standing outside the Void Crack, saw that the Mountain Lords were as ferocious as tigers, he merely shook his head and before the three of them could strike him, he directly disappeared from the spot.
Mao Zhe almost sprayed out a mouthful of blood with exasperation.
He was ready to strike, but his target had gone missing all of a sudden, which made him feel like he had punched a pile of cotton. It was expected that he was vexed.
Turning his head, he saw Yang Kai standing just more than 10 kilometres away and staring silently at them.
“Big Brother!” Geng Qing awaited his order.
After a brief moment of hesitation, Mao Zhe said through gritted teeth, “Go!”
Then, he directly plunged into the Void Crack and disappeared. Seeing that, Geng Qing and Zhou Ya hurriedly followed him.
“They’re pretty resolute.” Yang Kai watched them leave and nodded gently.
As the Astral Wind devastated the surroundings, the three of them were losing their strength with each passing breath. If this dragged on, it could cause their Small Universes to collapse.
Rather than getting tangled up with Yang Kai, they figured it was better to look for the exit through the wind source. As long as they could get out of the wind source, they would be able to leave the Shadowless Cave Heaven and obtain their freedom.
However, it wasn’t an easy feat to leave.
Yang Kai looked silently at the Void Crack he had torn apart with a meaningful grin on his face as the relentless Astral Wind caused the branches of the ancient tree behind him to sway.
After just ten breaths of time, three figures shot out of the Void Crack, looking battered with unstable auras. They were Mao Zhe and the others who had entered the crack just now.
In just ten breaths of time, their auras had dropped significantly. It was apparent that they had suffered some huge losses. Presently, they all looked horrified as though they were being pursued by some kind of hideous beast. In quick steps, they ran as far away as possible from the Void Crack and disappeared over the horizon.
Before they vanished from sight, Mao Zhe glared at Yang Kai and snarled, “This Monarch will never forget what you’ve done to me and will get even with you one day!”
Yang Kai put on a faint smile and nonchalantly chased after them.
Mao Zhe and the others thought that they would just stay as far away from the wind source as possible, but regardless of how far they went, they were still unable to get rid of the Astral Wind’s harassment.
What made them even more incensed was the fact that Yang Kai was calmly following them, and they were unable to get rid of him.
He didn’t attempt to attack them as he just gazed at them from afar as though he was watching a good show.
Two hours later, Zhou Ya screamed with a pale face, “Something is wrong, Big Brother!”
Mao Zhe’s expression was so cold that it was as though one could scrape a layer of frost off his face. Certainly, he had also realised that something was off. Usually, the Astral Wind would only last for about an hour before it stopped, but now it had far exceeded its normal duration.
After giving it a thought, he realised that the cause of the Astral Wind this time was that Yang Kai had torn the Void apart and exposed the wind source. If the Void Crack wasn’t closed, the wind source wouldn’t disappear; therefore, they were unable to draw on their past experiences to make a judgement.
However, under the influence of the Astral Wind, the heritages of their Small Universes were draining away at a steady pace. There would come a moment when their cultivation regressed or their Small Universes might even fall apart directly.
One hour later, the Astral Wind still didn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon and Zhou Ya appeared to be in a desperate state.
Geng Qing took a glance at the relentless Yang Kai and said through clenched teeth, “Why don’t we fight it out with him, Big Brother?”
There was a bitter smile on Mao Zhe’s face as he shook his head, “We’re no longer a match for him.”
If they were still in peak condition, they could have joined forces and fought against Yang Kai; however, presently, their strengths had plummeted significantly, so how were they supposed to defeat him?
They were unable to flee either. If Yang Kai had the intention, he could wait for their strength to drop further and easily kill them off. He didn’t even need to make a move actually, for it would only take three to five days before the three of them were killed by the Astral Wind.
All of a sudden, Mao Zhe stopped in his tracks and turned around. As he stared at the approaching Yang Kai, he questioned in a grim voice, “What do you want?”
Yang Kai stopped and hovered in mid-air. The branches of the ancient tree behind him hung low and his stable aura suggested that he hadn’t even been affected by the Astral Wind one bit in the past three hours.
He looked condescendingly at Mao Zhe and asked, “You’re an intelligent man, Head Mountain Lord, so why is there a need to ask the obvious?”
Mao Zhe asked, “You’ve torn space apart and exposed the wind source. Now, the entire Shadowless Cave Heaven will be devastated by the Astral Wind. What benefits would that bring you?”
Yang Kai shook his head, “I just wanted to see if I could break through the Void and connect to the outside world. Exposing the wind source was just an accident.”
Mao Zhe scoffed, “Even if that’s true, what are you trying to achieve by following us but not attacking? I hope you’re not going to tell me that you want to collect our corpses.”
Yang Kai sneered, “I don’t have such a distasteful hobby.”
Mao Zhe’s face fell as he took a glance at the tree behind the young man, “Do you want us to submit to you, then?”
Yang Kai replied with a smile, “I’m just trying to give you all a chance to survive. In this situation, you’re going to lose your lives if you don’t submit to me. I believe no one is willing to lose their life when there is another option, including you all. Why would you turn me down when there’s a chance to survive?”
Mao Zhe said through clenched teeth, “This Monarch has lived for a long time, and has killed countless people before. Do you think I fear death?”
Yang Kai rubbed his palms together, “I admire the fact that you’re not afraid of death, Head Mountain Lord. You’re truly valiant. If you insist on dying today, I won’t stop you. After you pass away, I’ll help you find a proper place and bury your corpse. However… sometimes simply dying isn’t the worst fate a man can face. Seeing the cultivation you’ve accumulated over millennia slowly being scraped away, all your hopes, dreams, and aspirations taken from you piece by piece, now that sounds like a fate worse than death.”
Mao Zhe’s expression darkened when he heard that.
Just like what Yang Kai had said, life or death already didn’t matter to someone like Mao Zhe. He had lived for a long time and killed innumerable people in the past. He could accept it if he were to die in battle.
However, seeing his life’s work slowly taken from him, the heritage of his Small Universe shaved off one piece at a time while being powerless to resist, it was simply intolerable. It was just like seeing a thief barging into his house, taking away all his property and burning his home down while he was forced to watch.
The whole point of cultivation was to traverse one’s Martial Dao. No one could tolerate the notion of their cultivation being stolen from them.
Geng Qing’s face was livid as he shuddered in rage and unwillingness. It was as though he could imagine himself perishing into nothingness.
Zhou Ya pressed her lips together and her eyes were filled with fear and anxiety.
Yang Kai extended his hand and said, “I truly admire the fact that you’re so calm in the face of death. Since you’re determined to die, I will stop persuading you. All of you may set off on your journey to the Yellow Springs now!”
He appeared ready to watch them slowly perish on their own.