Han Li found two overbearing presences appear in front of the valley.
The fireball faintly contained the silhouette of a bird.
As for the ball of yellow light, it appeared to be a demon beast rolled up in a ball. Its body was covered in a thick tough yellow hide. It was wrinkled and folded as if it were a layer of armor. And from within its fat body poked out a sharp rat’s head and a slender tail; it appeared to be a huge demon mouse variant.
"What manner of strange demon beast is this?" Han Li asked.
“An Armored Earth Dragon, what an extremely rare spirit beast!” Monarch Soul Divergence shouted with delight, “It’s widely known for its defensive prowess and ability to find treasures. It is fortunate that it has appeared before you!”
“Oh, it’s that beast? I had a feeling I recognized it.”
As soon as Han Li spoke, the two demon beasts charged into the valley’s white mist one after another, aiming to acquire the Rainbow Skirt Grass underneath within.
In response, he summoned a green formation plate into his hand. With a slap, the plate glowed with bright light, raising the outermost layers of the valley’s restrictions and trapping the Vast Yang Bird in the lead. The ball of yellow light hastily followed after it, but was blocked once the spell formation was activated.
The Armored Earth Dragon was furiously alarmed from the sudden obstruction and its body shimmered with yellow light, expanding to the size of twenty-four meters. Layers upon layers of grey plate emerged from its body, and it rolled into a ball before fiercely knocking against the barrier.
With a huge bang, the strike destroyed the two outermost layers of the restrictions. After a pause, the beast continued to strike away at the remaining restrictions.
This short delay gave Han Li ample time to restrain the Vast Yang Bird.
After the bird collided against the restrictions, it waved its wings and scattered scarlet fireballs all around it, dispersing most of the mist below it and revealing the forest filled with blooming peach trees. With a quick scan of its eyes, it quickly spotted Han Li and the source of its bewitchment, the Rainbow Skirt Grass.
Even without a fully developed intelligence, Han Li’s unconcealed mid-Nascent Soul cultivation invoked fear in the bird. It circled above, not daring to stoop too low, but unable to escape the incredibly powerful enticement of the Rainbow Skirt Grass.
As the bird hesitated, Han Li expressionlessly raised his hand and a black talisman shot out. In a flicker of black light, the talisman turned into a black ghost claw and reached out to grab the Vast Yang Bird.
The bird was deeply shocked and without another thought, it released over thirty fist-sized fireballs with a flap of its wings. They ruptured against the ghost claw, covering the black light with raging inferno and disabling it for the time being.
Astonished, Han Li soon formed an incantation gesture with his hands and silver wings emerged from his back.
With a ring of thunder, he disappeared without a trace, followed by his reappearance in a flash of silver light ten meters above the bird’s head. He then clapped his hands together with a gloomy expression before separating them to release two dense bolts of golden lightning from his palms, only for them to rupture midair and form a huge net of lightning.
Devoting its attention on blocking the black ghost claw, the Vast Yang Bird was completely caught off guard, and was trapped underneath the cackling net of lightning.
In a panic, it shook its body to shed off a few of its feathers, turning into a dense fiery blaze that struck the net of lightning, followed by a chain of explosions.
A cold glint appeared in Han Li’s eyes when he saw this and he shook his wrist, uttering, “Restrain.”
The large net of lightning wildly flashed and pushed against the flames as it closed in. In a brilliant display of golden light, the Vast Yang Bird was restrained by the thick, dense net of lightning. No matter how hard it attempted to escape, it couldn’t make the slightest movement, causing it to let out a defeated cry.
Han Li smiled in joy at the sight of this, but at that moment, he heard a huge explosion from above him.
He raised his head in shock and saw that the Armored Earth Dragon had finally broken through the layer of the restrictions he placed around the valley. He had to admit, his hastily placed spell formations were truly too weak to hold against a grade seven demon beast.
The dragon had uncurled itself from its armored ball state and charged into the valley, catching sight of Han Li and the Vast Yang Bird restricted in a prison of golden lightning. Its pair of small emerald eyes flickered about and a clear expression of fear could be seen from its face.
When Han Li saw this, his heart stirred. The Armored Earth Dragon appeared quite intelligent.
In spite of its fear, a trace of cunning was betrayed from its eyes when it saw the Rainbow Skirt Grass on the ground. It shot towards the ground in a flicker of yellow light.
“Stop it! It is capable of earth evasion techniques. You won’t have a chance of capturing it once it reaches the ground.” Monarch Soul Divergence warned.
“Don’t worry, I’ve already made arrangements,” Han Li replied with a calm smile.
When the dragon arrived on the ground and saw that there was nothing protecting the Rainbow Skirt Grass, it gleefully pounced towards it with a wide open mouth.
But in that instant, twelve streaks of sparkling icy Qi suddenly shot out from the ground surrounding the grass.
Well into the air, it was too slow to react and couldn’t avoid being struck by the icy Qi, sealing it in a layer of ice.
White light flickered from the ground to reveal twelve half-foot-long snow-white centipedes. Icy Qi trailed from their mouths.
When Monarch Soul Divergence saw the frozen beast, he chuckled and said, “So you had your centipedes stationed around it. I had worried for nothing.”
The Armored Earth Dragon was quite durable and hardy, but it wasn’t enough to protect against the combined frost Qi of twelve Six-winged Frost Centipedes. It was no surprise the ambush was effective.
Han Li indifferently said, “I set them there just in case. I hadn’t expected that they would come across an Armored Earth Dragon.”
With that said, he blurred and appeared behind the Vast Yang Bird, his eyes focused on the many of its tail feathers. He smiled at the bird and said, “I know you should be able intelligent enough to understand a few of my words. I have no intention of harming you, so would you rather release your tail feathers, or have me rip them off?”
The Vast Yang Bird clearly understood him. Its body trembled in response and it fiercely screeched in a display of unwilling resentment.
Han Li’s expression turned sullen and he coldly snorted. Without another word, he wrapped azure light around his hand and reached towards the bird’s rear.
A trace of fear appeared on the bird’s eyes. Helpless, it could only shake all of its tail feathers off in a flicker of red light. These feathers were linked to its body’s essence and blood vessels. If they were forcefully pulled out, its body would suffer quite a bit of damage. If it took the initiative to abandon them, it would still suffer a loss of strength, but it could avoid unnecessary injuries.
Han Li was delighted to see this, and he caught all of the feathers in his hand. Then, he took out a jade box he had prepared and quickly placed them inside. With the lid of the box sealed with several talismans, he carefully put it away in his storage pouch.
With that done, he placed his hand on top of the Vast Yang Bird’s head and poured a bit of spiritual power into it, knocking it unconscious.
He let out a smile and turned his attention to the frozen Armored Earth Dragon
Although the demon beast was trapped in a thick layer of ice, it was still conscious. As such, its small eyes betrayed terror when it saw that Han Li had turned his attention toward him.
Han Li then flew down in a streak of azure light.
A quarter hour later, a band of brilliant gold light arrived above the valley at the speed of lightning. It circled once in the air before fading away to reveal the old purple-robed woman that was previously in the High Sun Palace’s secret hall. At her side stood an extremely solemn Fang Chu, who stifled his breath in an attempt to attract less attention.
At that moment, the restrictions covering the blooming peach tree forest in the valley had completely disappeared. There was simply an unconscious Vast Yang Bird that had its tail feathers plucked lying beneath a tree.
When the old woman saw this, she swept her spiritual sense across it in alarm. Although she found that the bird had suffered a loss in strength from its missing tail feathers, she grew relaxed. But after she took another look at the bird’s rear, anger bloomed in her heart.
“Take a look at the bird and see if you can awaken it,” the old woman commanded with a serious tone.
When Fang Chu heard this, he repeatedly nodded in a display of complete obedience and hurriedly flew down. If it weren’t for the High Sun Palace’s Ancestor finding him along the way, he wouldn’t have been able to reach this location at this speed.
The old woman was looking around her, and with some thought, she closed her eyes and slowly released her spiritual sense to search for the impudent culprit of this act.
A short moment later, her expression changed as if she suddenly found something. She hurriedly barked orders to Fang Chu down below and hurriedly flew off in a golden streak of light.
Once she was over a hundred kilometers away, she stopped a strange looking cultivator that was about to leave the mountain range.
Brimming with suspicious, the old woman coldly asked, “Look who I’ve found, it’s Fellow Daoist Ma of the Devilwood Sect. Why aren’t you peacefully cultivating at your sect? Why have you stealthily arrived at our Heavenpeak Mountain Range? Was the demon beasts’ uproar your doing?”
She was speaking to a masked yellow-robed cultivator. His eyes had an inhuman golden glow.