Chapter 36: Silver Winged Demon Wolf
During a martial practitioner’s cultivation, the first six levels of the Refinement Realm only required the accumulation of spirit energy to slowly temper the body; it was relatively simple and easy.
From the seventh level of Refinement Realm onward, the advancement threshold went up by a whole level of difficulty, each promotion being much harder than the last.
Generally, only extraordinarily talented practitioners, coupled with the usage of spirit stones, spirit materials, and bitter cultivating, could hope to breakthrough to the Natal Opening Realm before the age of twenty.
As of this year, Qin Lie was fifteen and was able to enter the seventh level of the Refinement Realm; his speed was extremely shocking.
At this moment, Qin Lie was feeling a tingling pain from his acupoints. He immediately realized that his bitter cultivation during the last half a year or so caused him to inch closer to breaking through the barrier to the eighth level of the Refinement Realm.
The human body had a total of seven hundred and twenty acupoints. As long as spirit energy can pass through the acupoints and be released, one would have been considered to have entered the eighth level of the Refinement Realm.
The eighth level of Refinement, was all about tempering the body’s acupoints!
As long as one was able to find the trick and cause one acupoint to open up and exude spirit energy, opening the rest would become very easy.
The first step to advancing from the seventh level to the eighth was to cause an acupoint to contain spirit energy so that it could then emit the energy.
As soon as his acupoints were able to act as a channel for spirit energy, he would once again rise a level, truly stepping into the eighth level of Refinement!
He continued cultivating. His heart filled with joy as he slowly tried to agglomerate energy to assail his acupoint…
His spirit energy was like a stream, slowly circulating within him. He then condensed a strand of mind energy and perceived the path of the circulating spirit energy, faintly observing the spirit energy entering his muscles, veins, and acupoints.
He could feel each and every acupoint; however, there really were too many of them, and there was no way for him to identify each one.
He slowly gathered spirit energy and suddenly tried to force it into an unknown acupoint in his chest.
“Zzzt zzzt zzzt! Boom!”
A weird electric crackling followed by the boom of thunder suddenly emanated out from that unknown acupoint, directly entering his mind.
The spirit energy that he had tried to force in couldn’t penetrate into the acupoint whatsoever, as if it had been hindered by a barrier of thunder and lightning; it was firmly kept outside of the acupoint.
The depths of his mind jolted. His eyes suddenly became blank and dull as he lurched from side to side, almost falling over during his forward advance.
“What’s wrong? Is it because you are too tired? Should we rest here a bit longer?” softly asked Ling Yushi. Upon seeing his abnormal behavior, Ling Yushi, who was behind him, hurriedly caught him.
Shaking his head, Qin Lie stood up again, gesturing that he was ok.
Qin Lie quite enjoyed feeling the wonderful touch of her jade white hands. However, he knew that this was not the time for messing around and said, “Just now, I was a little distracted. I will be more attentive from now on, I’m fine.” He reluctantly moved away from her, continuing to lead the way.
Liu Yan and the rest all stopped, suspiciously looking at the two. Once the two started moving again, they all closely followed behind.
“My entire body’s seven hundred and twenty acupoints have unexpectedly… unexpectedly already been occupied by the thunder and lightning energy. I was wondering where the thunder and lightning energy were coming from when I circulated my spirit energy through my muscles and veins. To think that it was hidden within my acupoints! If it’s like this, then I was already tempering my acupoints when I was cultivating Heavenly Thunder Eradication?”
Qin Lie was extremely confused; he was neither able to figure out if the thunder and lighting energy within his acupoints would affect his future cultivation, nor was he able to determine if this was something good or bad.
“It seems that I will need to find some time to carefully observe and analyze it. In order to breakthrough the eighth level of Refinement, my acupoints have to be able to emit spirit energy. Currently, the thunder and lightning energy have already occupied my acupoints, making it so that my spirit energy cannot enter them. I wonder if it will affect the refinement of my body as I try to enter the eighth level of Refinement…”
He didn’t dare to put these thoughts into practice as they were traveling and finally returned his focus to leading the way.
They rushed home through the darkness. As the sky began to gradually brighten, everyone looked over into the distance, gradually becoming able to see a towering mountain peak piercing into the clouds.
“That’s Frost Mist Mountain!” said Liu Yan encouragingly as he wiped sweat off his brow. “Within Frost Mist Mountain, there are occasionally practitioners of Nebula Pavilion moving around. If we can chance upon a beast hunting squad, it will greatly increase our power! At the very least, we can go home through Frost Mist Mountain and won’t have to continue through the depths of the Arctic Mountain Range.”
Hearing his words, everyone quietly sighed in relief. They all felt as if they were finally able to see the dawning of hope.
“We need to make it past today first. It is going to be our hardest day, and only if we make it out of the forest alive will we reach Frost Mist Mountain,” said Gao Yu, pouring cold water on everyone.
As soon as he said those words, the smiles on everyone’s faces disappeared. Everyone knew that that was the truth, and it was not time for them to relax their vigilance yet.
They continued on their way.
Before long, the sun rose, and ray after ray of sunlight stubbornly made its way through the dense foliage, stabbing into the ground like spears.
“Stop!” suddenly shouted Liu Yan softly, his expression extremely solemn. “In front of us… there are many spirit beasts approaching! Not good, they’re already here!”
Liu Yan was in the Natal Opening Realm. As he was more than a level over everyone else, the first one to feel any abnormalities would naturally be him.
“Didn’t Qin Lie say that we weren’t going to encounter any packs of spirit beasts?” asked someone from the Gao Family.
“It’s not like spirit beasts are inanimate and will always stay in one place. The fact that we haven’t met a single spirit beast this entire way so far is already a proclamation that Qin Lie hasn’t led us astray.” Liu Yan looked the man in the eye, continuing, “This is coincidental. When spirit beasts are active, it is impossible for anyone to correctly predict where they will appear.”
“Big Brother Liu, can we avoid it?” anxiously asked Ling Yushi who knew deep within her heart just how terrifying packs of spirit beasts were.
Shaking his head, Liu Yan bitterly said, “We can’t avoid them, they are already almost here. I hope… it isn’t a pack of too high leveled spirit beasts. Otherwise, we are in some big trouble.”
“Stay close to the trunks of big trees and form defensive formations. Get ready to engage with them,” coldly said Gao Yu, gnashing his teeth.
Everyone suddenly sobered up. No matter whether they were members of the Ling or Gao Family, they all hastily grouped together and formed into defensive formations, carefully preparing for the arrival of the spirit beast pack.
“I hope our luck isn’t too bad. We are so close to entering Frost Mist Mountain, nothing bad must happen,” quietly prayed Ling Ying.
Everyone was like her, all quietly praying and hoping that the approaching spirit beast pack was one of the lowest level spirit beasts.
Suddenly, a giant, silver colored wolf with two wings on its back, which neared two meters long, appeared from within the forest in front of them.
“A Silver Winged Demon Wolf! It’s actually… it’s actually a Silver Winged Demon Wolf. It’s over!” moaned Ling Xin despairingly upon seeing the spirit beast that emerged, his expression turning into one of deep fear.
When the Silver Winged Demon Wolf appeared, the faces of everyone became ashen, their eyes showing their extreme fear and uneasiness. They were all in despair like Ling Xin.
Silver Winged Demon Wolves loved to eat human flesh. Upon encountering humans, they would definitely not let them pass considering how much they especially relished fresh human flesh.
“We were almost out of the forest. For us to meet a Silver Winged Demon Wolf, do the heavens truly want to end us?” bitterly laughed Ling Feng.
“Ah, we are definitely dead this time. Silver Winged Demon Wolves almost never appear alone. We have no chance at all,” said Ling Xiao helplessly.
“We just barely escaped with our lives from the pursuit of Shattered Ice Manor. For us to be torn to pieces by a Silver Winged Demon Wolf, I’m really not willing! If I had known this would happen, then I would have fought against Shattered Ice Manor. Even if I had only killed one, it would have been worth it!” said a Gao Family member.
As they quietly despaired, one Silver Winged Demon Wolf after another slowly emerged. As more Silver Winged Demon Wolves appeared, their morale fell lower and lower as they became increasingly more terrified and fearful.
Silver Winged Demon Wolves were Rank Two Beasts, able to contend with Natal Opening Realm practitioners. Amongst the group, they only had one Natal Opening Realm practitioner, Liu Yan, and he was at the early stage. If they had to fight one on one, perhaps none of them would be an opponent for a Silver Winged Demon Wolf.
And currently, a total of eleven Silver Winged Demon Wolves had appeared in front of them!
How could they not despair in such a situation?
Out of everyone here, the only person to not feel despair after seeing the Silver Winged Demon Wolves was Qin Lie!
Not only did he not feel despair, he secretly felt excited. Licking his lips, he stealthily extended his hand and touched the sculpture by his chest, secretly thinking: We encountered them so quickly. It’s unfortunate, truly unfortunate that Shattered Ice Manor’s people haven’t caught up yet. Otherwise, this truly would have been perfect.
“Qin Lie…” At this moment, Ling Yushi suddenly neared him, standing side by side with him and deliberately grasping his left hand as she turned her head and apologetically, yet beautifully, smiled at him. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have called you along to Celestial Wolf Mountain. If you hadn’t come, you wouldn’t have had such troublesome encounters, and you wouldn’t… die here with me.”
A breeze swept over, blowing the hair on her forehead into a mess, causing her to seem even more like a damsel in distress. Her jade white hand clenched Qin Lie’s, seemingly trying to better feel Qin Lie’s presence, to better feel the warmth coming from his palm. It seemed as if being this way had calmed her down in the face of her impending death.
“Dying here? That might not be certain…” Qin Lie quietly murmured to himself.
“What did you say?” Ling Yushi’s slight smile became somber and sour. “It’s all my fault, I just had to call you over, causing you to suffer through this disaster with me.”
“I was the one who wanted to come with you,” said Qin Lie, his expression aloof.
Hearing him put it that way, Ling Yushi felt warm in her heart, lightly smiling as she said, “Oh you… you’re too gentle, caring, and you even know how to protect others. The day of our engagement, when we were holding hands… At that moment, I should’ve known that, but knowing that now shouldn’t be considered late.”
Qin Lie was surprised. Who knew that under what seemed like imminent death, Ling Yushi, who was usually strong, would actually reveal a sentimental, feminine side.
The loud howl of a wolf sounded, and eleven powerful Silver Winged Demon Wolves suddenly rushed over.
Their silver wings spread as they jumped, allowing them to glide through the air and greatly increasing their speed.
Upon seeing the shockingly fast pace of the Silver Winged Demon Wolves, the people who had originally believed that there was still a sliver of hope to escape had it completely crushed to pieces.
Everyone, even Liu Yan, had looks of despair as they wrung their brains. However, they were still unable to think of ways to escape this disaster. They could only huddle together and support each other. To them, every moment they lived was another moment.
“I don’t want to watch the Silver Winged Demon Wolves tear me apart and devour my flesh. I’ve heard people say… Silver Winged Demon Wolves don’t eat the flesh of dead people.” A practitioner of the Gao Family emotionlessly raised the sharp knife in his hand, his eyes emotionless as he was about to cut his own throat to avoid being devoured alive.
“Please wait a moment before dying,” Qin Lie suddenly shouted in a deep tone.
Amidst the eyes of despair, fear, doubt, and surprise, Qin Lie walked to the front of the formation. Facing the attacking pack of Silver Winged Demon Wolves, he took out the wooden sculpture that his grandfather had given him, holding it high above him.