Translator: Silavin & Tia
Translation Checker: PewPewLazerGun
Editor and Proofreader: Leo of Zion Mountain & Dhael Ligerkeys
“Everyone, is there something you know that I don’t?” Yang Kai asked.
The crowd fell silent. A long time later, a white-robed High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Master finally said, “Sect Master Yang, there are many secrets in the world. Some things are better left unknown.”
The words had only just left his mouth when he heard Yang Kai giving a cry of surprise.
Everybody thought that Yang Kai had been injured during his battle with Shi Zheng earlier, so they quickly looked at him in concern. In the next moment, their expressions changed drastically.
The Black Ink Insect that had been captured in Yang Kai’s hand all this time had escaped his grasp for some reason. It had transformed into a black thread that rushed towards the white-robed High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Master at the speed of lightning.
The white-robed High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Master immediately became drenched in cold sweat. He might be in the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm, but he was bound to suffer a tragic end if he was corrupted by the Black Ink Insect. The only possibility was that his Small Universe would be invaded and he would eventually become corrupted by the Black Ink like Shi Zheng.
According to the ancient books, it was extremely tough to defend against the Black Ink Insect, unless they could kill it in time. If it got too close, then even an Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm Master would suffer terribly.
Space suddenly condensed slightly, and under the fluctuations of Space Principles, the black thread that was rushing towards the white-robed Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm Master froze in place.
Yang Kai leisurely walked over, then he grabbed the struggling Black Ink Insect with his hand and looked up at the white-robed Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm Master, “What did you say just now? I apologise, but I did not hear you clearly. Can you repeat what you said?”
The Black Ink Insect in his hand moved restlessly, as though it could escape from Yang Kai’s control at any time.
Everybody’s expression darkened. [He could have just spoken nicely. Why is he threatening others?]
Yu Xiang Die didn’t know whether to laugh or cry, “With Sect Master Yang’s current strength and status, I believe he has the right to know about these things. What do you think?”
Everyone fell silent, and only a long while later, somebody finally nodded, “Alright, we’ll tell him.”
They had no choice but to explain the situation. Yang Kai was staring at them fixedly with the Black Ink Insect in his hand, which frightened all of them. Who would dare to go against him at this moment?
Besides, although these matters were only known to the Elders of the Cave Heavens and Paradises since ancient times, if it really came down to it, Yang Kai’s current strength and status certainly gave him the qualifications to know about certain secrets.
Naturally, the main reason was that he had been exposed to this matter today, making it useless even if they wanted to conceal the truth from him.
The others did not express their opinions, but not saying anything was as good as having no objections to the matter. Only then did Yu Xiang Die say, “Put the Black Ink Insect away.”
“Fine!” Yang Kai obediently placed the Black Ink Insect back into the wooden box and tossed the box into his Space Ring.
Everybody finally breathed a sigh of relief. The High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters who were regarded as terrifying existences were played around by Yang Kai. Just thinking of the situation earlier, they couldn’t help feeling complicated.
The void was not the place to discuss such matters, so Yu Xiang Die raised a hand and summoned a ship. Everybody boarded and sat down on the deck.
Yang Kai widened his eyes and stared at the people in front of him with a thirst for knowledge.
Meanwhile, the High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters stared at Yu Xiang Die. Their meaning was clear, ‘since you brought up this matter, it is up to you to solve it.’
Yu Xiang Die rolled her eyes at them before she turned to look at Yang Kai, “If we have to be honest, our understanding of this matter is fragmented and not very comprehensive.”
Thanks to this incident, Yang Kai clearly felt her intent to protect him. When he had been suspected of being corrupted by the Black Ink Smoke, she had proactively offered to inspect his Small Universe. It could be seen that she truly regarded him as Yin-Yang Cave Heaven’s Son-in-Law.
That was why Yang Kai willingly believed her words and nodded, “In that case, please tell me what you know.”
She pondered in silence for a moment, seeming to arrange her thoughts. A short while later, she finally started her explanation, “In this world, there exists a peculiar race known as the Black Ink. We call them the Black Ink Clan!”
The Black Ink Clan was apparently extremely dangerous. The main reason was that they had extremely powerful invasive and corrosive abilities. This was something Yang Kai himself had personally experienced. Whether it was the Black Ink Smoke that Shi Zheng left behind after his death or the Black Ink Insect, both had such properties.
Once a cultivator’s Small Universe was corroded by the Black Ink aura, they would turn into the Black Ink Clan’s slaves and undergo a drastic change in mentality. However, it was impossible to tell the difference by appearance alone. Those who were converted looked no different from normal.
That was the case for Shi Zheng. Nobody ever thought that he had been corroded by the Black Ink Clan and became one of their servants.
Yang Kai listened with a deep frown. If that was the case, then the Black Ink Clan was truly difficult to guard against. Who could say whether the other party had been corrupted by the Black Ink Clan?
“The last time something like this happened in the 3,000 Worlds was over 70,000 years ago.” Yu Xiang Die lowered her voice slightly, “I’m sure you’ve heard of this before. There was once a Cave Heaven that took in an extremely talented disciple. This disciple had the ability to advance directly into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm. His aptitude was so great that it shocked both the past and present. That Cave Heaven devoted all their resources to nurturing him, and one day he finally advanced into the Ninth-Order Open Heaven Realm. However, he suddenly underwent a drastic change in nature and went on a massacre. That Cave Heaven suffered countless casualties as a result, which eventually led to its collapse. There was no choice but to remove their name from the list of Cave Heavens and Paradises.”
This was indeed a story that Yang Kai was familiar with as he had heard it from Yue He when he was still in the Emperor Realm.
Yu Xiang Die continued, “Because that disciple was not raised in the Cave Heaven but accepted into the Sect halfway through, a rumour spread across the 3,000 Worlds from then onward. Cultivators who were not raised in a Cave Heaven or Paradise were not allowed to advance directly into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm, lest they grow up and threaten the dominance of the Cave Heavens and Paradises.”
Yang Kai couldn’t help certain memories from flashing before his eyes…
His journey to the Open Heaven Realm had been wrought with countless obstacles set up by the Cave Heavens and Paradises. Ti Zheng of Myriad Demons Cave Heaven did not even hesitate to lure him into the Shattered Heaven where a great ambush lay in wait just to hinder his advancement into the Open Heaven Realm.
In the end, he had been forced to break through to the Fifth-Order Open Heaven Realm. The Cave Heavens and Paradises finally stopped targeting him after that.
Yang Kai had no regrets about the matter. The Proprietress had been trapped in the Shadowless Cave Heaven at the time, and his cultivation in the Emperor Realm had been far too weak. He had no choice but to advance into the Open Heaven Realm for the opportunity to enter the Shadowless Cave Heaven to rescue her.
Even though he had no regrets, he could not help feeling some resentment towards the Cave Heavens and Paradises when he recalled everything he went through in the past. He had been cultivating on his own without provoking anyone, so why was he not allowed to advance directly into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm? It was not until today that he learned the truth.
“The inheritance of the Cave Heavens and Paradises stretches back for countless aeons. If they were truly so petty, they would never have reached such prosperous heights. The reason they do not allow cultivators from the outside world to advance directly into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm is not to show their dominance, but to prevent the past from repeating itself. The catastrophe from 70,000 years ago brought down a Cave Heaven. It’s obvious that nobody wants that to happen a second time.”
If anybody were to advance directly into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm and was secretly converted by the Black Ink Clan once more, it would be a catastrophe if they reached the Ninth-Order Open Heaven Realm undiscovered. On the other hand, anything beneath the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm would not make much of a difference. No matter how talented a person was, if they advanced into the Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm, they could only reach the Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm due to innate limits. The Cave Heavens and Paradises did not lack for Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm Masters, so once the truth was exposed, many Ancestors would take action and the situation could be controlled.
Yang Kai furrowed his brow tightly together as he asked, “Is that to say that the genius was corrupted by the Black Ink Clan?”
Yu Xiang Die nodded, “That’s right. Nobody knows when he was enslaved as the only signs appeared after he advanced into the Ninth-Order Open Heaven Realm. Since then, the Black Ink Clan has not appeared in the 3,000 Worlds again. To be honest, this is our first time seeing traces of the Black Ink Clan with our own eyes. We have only ever read about them in ancient records before.”
Yang Kai frowned for a moment before saying puzzledly, “That can’t be right. If the Black Ink Clan is so difficult to guard against, then there should be a lot more of them. Why has the Black Ink Clan remained silent for so many years that even you have never seen them?”
Yu Chang Dao explained from the side, “It is difficult to resist the corruption of the Black Ink Clan, but their main method of doing so is through the Black Ink Insects. It’s the thing you put back into that box just now. The Black Ink Insects are apparently very rare and precious. Unless they come across an extremely valuable target, the Black Ink Clan will not make a move so easily.”
“Then, that Black Ink Smoke…” Yang Kai glanced suspiciously in the direction that Shi Zheng had died. The High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters had worked together to seal that space, and even now the black smoke churned and roiled, looking extremely ominous.
“Shi Zheng was clearly infected by a Black Ink Insect. When he saw us coming to aid you, he knew that he would not leave this place alive. That’s why he chose to die. After his death, the Black Ink aura in his Small Universe exploded out. This Black Ink Smoke is what’s left. At the end of the day, the Black Ink Smoke and the Black Ink Insect are from the same source.”
It was no wonder these people immediately fled several kilometres away when he took out the Black Ink Insect earlier. They were probably worried that the Black Ink Insect in his hands would explode.
Yang Kai rubbed his chin and pondered, “In other words, in the eyes of the Black Ink Clan, I’m considered an extremely valuable target.”
Yu Xiang Die laughed, “Of course. You might only be in the Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm, but the Star Boundary is now the focus of the entire 3,000 Worlds. The existence of the World Tree will also nurture many excellent cultivators in the future. Not to mention, you are a Star Boundary Great Emperor. If you were converted by the Black Ink Clan…” At that point, she suddenly stopped laughing and shuddered in fear, “Asking you to destroy the Star Boundary is a simple task. If the Star Boundary no longer existed, then the Open Heaven Realm Cradle would be gone too.”
Everybody looked at each other and finally understood why Shi Zheng had tried to corrupt Yang Kai.
On the other hand, Yang Kai suddenly recalled something.
The Ancestral Land had a Demon Sealing Land, and the Demon Sealing Land contained a long-dead Black Giant Spirit God. When he was cultivating in the Dragon Clan’s Crystal Palace, he had glimpsed the shocking battle that took place in ancient times. In order to suppress and seal the Giant Spirit God, the Dragon and Phoenix Clans had paid an enormous price. In the end, both the Dragon Emperor and the Phoenix Empress were forced to sacrifice themselves, burning all their Blood Essence just to stop the rampaging enemy.
Yang Kai had always wondered why that Giant Spirit God went to war against the Divine Spirits; after all, the Giant Spirit God Clan was an extremely peaceful and innocent Race. Although they were powerful, they did not provoke others for no reason. They only fed on dead Universe Worlds and travelled through the vast 3,000 Worlds for that reason.
Furthermore, he had not understood why the Giant Spirit God had been black in colour. That Giant Spirit God was a little different from Ah Da, whom he met in the past. Yang Kai initially thought that it was just the difference between individuals of an ethnic group, but looking at things now…
What if the Giant Spirit God in ancient times had been corrupted by the Black Ink? If his nature changed drastically after being corrupted by the Black Ink Clan, then that Giant Spirit God had been enslaved by the Black Ink Clan!
[Demon Sealing Land… Demon Sealing Land… That’s not a Demon Sealing Land! That’s a Black Ink Sealing Land!]
Too much time had passed, so what happened in ancient times could no longer be known. The knowledge that was passed down through word of mouth over countless generations, which was why the Black Ink Sealing Land had been misrepresented as the Demon Sealing Land instead.
No wonder Yang Kai had not sensed the existence of any Demon Qi when he first entered the Demon Sealing Land. That was because the land had nothing to do with Demons in the first place.