When Old Devil Qian saw Han Li arrive before him, his heart trembled and the Blood Devil Pearl came to an immediate stop.
Then, the silver silhouette behind the pearl began to take action. It raised a small bow in its hand and drew back a nonexistent bowstring to release a dense barrage of red arrows.
Right after, Han Li flashed a grin at the old devil and the Triflame Fan he held lit up. With the roar of a phoenix, the fan released a bird of flame towards the pearl.
Soon, Old Devil Qian found himself between the hammer and the anvil.
He was greatly troubled, having seen the might of the Triflame Fan once before. But despite knowing he couldn't afford to block the attack, the barrage from behind him was already incredibly powerful. After all, he was wounded by him at.
Helpless, his Blood Devil Pearl let out a piercing shriek and shot backwards. Crimson light surged from the pearl, followed by a manifestation of a grey face, and with it, a cloud of deep black Qi suddenly shot out.
In the violent gust of wind, a meter tall banner sparkling with green light stood tall amongst the inky-black Qi: The Ghost Sifting Banner.
Han Li instantly recognized the item. Apart from the density of devilish Qi, the banner was almost identical to the one he had obtained.
The banner then unfolded itself in front of the pearl.
Yin winds began to erupt nearby, filling the air with a black fog. Malformed ghosts heads emerged from them and spat wisps of flame at the approaching arrows.
As they pierced into the Yin Qi, an eruption sounded out from within.
With the given opportunity, Old Devil Qian concealed the Blood Devil Pearl with the banner’s power and the two treasures flew off.
But when he glanced back around, he saw that the phoenix was closely following after him.
The old devil’s heart trembled at the sight, but he soon steeled his resolve.
The banner released a bright green light and created a black hole on top of it.
Pitch-black Yin Qi began to rush out and an inch-large ghost shot out from inside. It surged in size as soon as it appeared, capping out at three meters tall and holding a fearsome bearing.
This ghost fiend was fully covered in glossy black armor and wielded a double sided trident, making for an impressive display.
The ghost seemed to have been under the restriction of the banner for some time. As soon as it manifested, it excitedly shrieked before it even registered its surroundings. But as soon as it did, it immediately became mute.
In its alarm, the ghost fiend quickly spat out a fog of pitch-black Yin Qi in front of it and flusteredly waved its trident in front of the phoenix to block it.
Although it couldn't compare to the likes of Old Devil Qian or Han Li, it was no less powerful than an ordinary early-Nascent Soul cultivator. But after being confined in the banner for several hundred years, it was met with an attack of such fearsome power during a moment of carelessness, only to be treated as fodder.
Then, a muffled explosion sounded out when the two attacks struck one another.
A halo of mysterious light appeared, pulsing before suddenly expanding over thirty meters wide.
In this display of might, talisman characters began to flow through the air, and the ghost fiend along with its surrounding Yin Qi had completely disappeared.
While the nova spread throughout the air, the Blood Devil Pearl was bought enough time to wrap itself in the Ghost Sifting Banner, protecting it against potential calamity.
Old Devil Qian felt lucky to have survived the successive attacks, but when he glanced at the Ghost Sifting Banner, he felt great sorrow.
The banner now barely shined with a faint light as its spiritual nature was greatly damaged.
This was due to the main apparition within the banner perishing and a majority of its ghost mist being wiped away by the tri-colored attack.
The Ghost Sifting Banner might’ve been known as the Yin Sifting Sect’s signature treasure, but this wasn’t because of its individual power.
Its true strength lay when all eighteen of the banners were gathered together.
Under those circumstances, he was confident he could defend himself against a Deity Transformation cultivator, let alone Han Li and the horned woman.
It was a pity that the Yin Sifting Sect Ancestor ruled that unless the sect was facing calamity, all eighteen banners were forbidden to be gathered under a single person. Ordinarily, the eighteen were distributed amongst the highest ranking cultivators of the sect. Even the grand elder himself wasn’t able to break away from this provision.
Not to mention that one of these treasures had fallen into the hands of his enemy.
With that resentfully thought, a ghost face made another appearance from the surface of the Blood Devil Pearl with the intention of absorbing the damaged magic tool.
With the strike from the Triflame Fan finished, his fear of Han Li had greatly diminished.
Using such a powerful treasure was certain to consume much magic power. Han Li had already used it once before as well. Having launched a second strike so soon after, he shouldn’t be able to use the treasure again anytime soon.
In any case, if Han Li was able to use the fan in rapid succession, he would’ve long perished from its might.
But at that moment, something strange happened.
Thunder exploded from a distance away, and an emerald streak launched out from the cloaked argent silhouette.
Fear was inspired in the old devil upon seeing this familiar scene.
When he first escaped Han Li with the Blood Devil Pearl, he was caught off guard and ambushed by this emerald streak. Since it contained Divine Devilbane Lightning, it damaged much of the crimson blaze protecting him.
Having suffered once before, he wasn’t about to let this happen again.
After the ghost face absorbed the banner, the pearl blurred and became vaguely shaped.
Three meters away, the green streak reappeared, its true form revealed to be an emerald arrow that was several inches long and arced with golden lightning.
With a clap of thunder, the arrow eviscerated the image of the Blood Devil Pearl that had been left behind.
To avoid another crisis, Old Devil Qian had used a secret technique to move the pearl a distance away, leaving only an illusion behind.
Forty meters away, a cloud of blood flame burst and the pearl made a reappearance.
But at that same moment, a flicker of black light appeared behind it: an inch-long saber shining like a jet-black crystal.
In a flash, it flicked past the pearl in a black line, passing through its defenses as if they had never existed.
A sharp crack and Old Devil Qian’s wretched scream pierced the air. The exterior of the pearl had shattered to pieces.
In a furious rage, he stuttered with disbelief, “I-Impossible! The Blood Devil Pearl can’t be so easily... Even the High Zenith Sect’s Divine Heavenbound Blade couldn't... That flying saber is...”
And with another muffled crack, the pearl completely shattered, revealing a single Nascent Soul.
The soul, however, appeared truly odd. Not only was there a faint blood mist pervading it, but it was holding a small flag in its hand and had five skulls rigidly biting down on its body.
The skulls were entirely pitch black and gnawing at the Nascent Soul as if to feed on its blood essence, making for a soul-chilling sight.
Immediately after the pearl had disappeared, Old Devil Qian’s Nascent Soul let out a piercing screech and wrapped itself in the Ghost Sifting Banner before flying off in a streak of black mist.
As for the huge skeleton that was occupying Gui Ling’s attention, it echoed the piercing shriek and its body dissolved after leaping into the air, forming five grey clouds that launched towards the old devil.
Although the pearl was destroyed and Old Devil Qian was no longer able to form the crimson silhouette, he was able to still fuse with the cinque devils and possess their body.
Of course, Gui Ling wasn’t about to allow them to easily escape. Her body instantly shrunk back to her original size as she chased after them.
If his Nascent Soul was allowed to escape the Greatnorth Essence Lights, he would then be capable of instantaneous movement, allowing him to quickly arrive next to the cinque devils and fuse together with them.
But now that his movements were restricted to an ordinary speed, he had no way to outpace Han Li’s Thunderstorm Wings.
As expected, Han Li waved his wings and appeared in front of Old Devil Qian with a raised hand, releasing a net of golden lightning.
The old devil instantly recognized this to be Divine Devilbane Lightning and spit out a blood mist in his panic to temporarily block the attack, then quickly changed his direction.
But then, another flash appeared in front of him, a silhouette in silver light. The light surrounding him soon faded away to reveal a middle-aged cultivator with a pale complexion. He wore yellow robes, had a blank expression, and held a small red bow in his hand — Hhe was the human-like puppet that possessed the cultivation of a late-Nascent Soul cultivator.
But when the puppet appeared, it didn’t attack. Rather, its eyes suddenly shined with a blinding purple light that released ripples into the air.
When Old Devil Qian saw this purple light, he instantly became captivated as if his soul was being drawn into it.
His body became warm and his mind grew blank.
“No! A bewitchment technique!” Although he was now reduced to his Nascent Soul, his well-nurtured spiritual sense was able to quickly awaken.
He rapidly turned his head, completely overwhelmed with shock, not daring to look into his eyes. Black Qi surged from his body and he quickly took off in a different direction.
However, he suddenly felt spiritual Qi fluctuations above him and he couldn't help but to look up.
It was a small cauldron that shined with a faint azure light revolving in the air.
Although this was the first time he had seen this treasure, in his thousand years of experience, he instantly sensed that it was beyond strange and hurriedly flew off in a black streak.
The cauldron then let out a clear ring and released a dense azure mist, quickly spreading out in the direction he left in.