Chapter 829: Portrait

As Han Li followed after the flying squirrel tracking the Ghost Spirit Sect Elder Zhong, the Ghost Spirit Sect Master’s party had passed through a huge mountain and arrived at a basin.

The basin was dim and damp with various sized puddles on the ground that made it miserable for the party of cultivators to walk through. Although they were able to use a few minor spell techniques to ward off the mud and dirty water, their speed was massively reduced.

Regardless of their currently discomfort, none of them complained. When they had climbed over the huge mountain, they managed to survey everything that laid in the distance and caught sight of the huge altar located at the center of the basin. This was the first time that they had seen an intact building since they had entered Devilfall Valley. Based solely on that fact, it was needless to say that the place was unordinary; it was also likely that it had something to do with the Spirit Ether Garden. As a result, Wei Wuya and the Ghost Spirit Sect cultivators trudged on with burning anticipation despite their slowed steps.

It wasn’t that they hadn’t thought of floating above the ground, but that they had nearly been struck by a bolt of crimson lightning when they tried. It seemed that the closer they were to the center of the basin, the more ferocious the restrictions became, eliminating any inclination of theirs to further test the restrictions.

After walking through the mire for half a day, the party of cultivators eventually arrived near the altar with only shrubbery in their way. The alter appeared giant even at a distance.

The altar was carved out of white mountain stone and stacked with huge steppes. It was absolutely towering, reaching over a kilometer into the sky. It was a truly grand and imposing structure. But given its vast height and the distance from them, they were still unable to clearly see its base.

Although Wei Wuya was treading through the murky water, his entire body emitted a faint green light that allowed him to slip through it in a smooth manner. He calmly said, “It should only take four hours at most before we arrive. Sect Master Wang, I am quite curious about the Spirit Ether Graden now that we are so close to it.”

Wang Tiansheng faintly smiled and casually said, “Brother Wei, be at ease. When the time comes, I will be certain to tell you everything.”

Wei Wuya nodded and was about to ask something further when a green light suddenly flashed from the Ghost Spirit Sect disciple walking at the very front. The disciple tumbled back before his head rolled off his body, followed by his chest, landing in the murky waters with a splash.

“Spatial tear!” When Wang Tiansheng heard this, his expression vastly changed. Wei Wuya and Wang Tiangu also wore solemn expressions at the.

Although Wei Wuya and Wang Tiangu didn’t know what Wang Tiansheng was plotting, their path had gone smoothly before this and they had grown relaxed and careless. Now that a spatial tear had appeared before them, they couldn’t help but feel their hearts tremble.

When the other three Ghost Spirit Sect disciples saw this, their faces paled, and the entire party came to a stop. 

Wang Tiansheng looked at the corpse of the disciple killed by the spatial tear and his expression wavered. 

During that moment, Wei Wuya closed his eyes and swept his spiritual sense around him before opening them once more. He expressionlessly shook his head and said, “This won’t do. The spatial tears aren’t large enough to be sensed with spiritual sense.”

When Wang Tiangu heard this, he flicked his fingers several times, launching five fireballs in succession. Three of the fireballs disappeared without a trace while the other two exploded upon contacting the ground, leaving two large holes behind.

Wang Tiangu said with a relaxed tone, “The spatial tear is very small and is only somewhat slanted. We’ll be able to walk around it.”

With a gloomy tone, Wang Tiansheng muttered, “Although this spatial tear is small, who knows how many we will encounter the rest of the way? We don’t have many lives to spare. According to what I know, there shouldn’t even be any spatial tears blocking our way. Could it be that that person has hidden something?”  

Wei Wuya’s expression stirred when he heard this, but he said nothing. As for Wang Tiangu, he glanced at the altar in the distance before looking back at the corpse lying on the ground, appearing somewhat confused.

“Then what should we do, Sect Master?”

Wang Tiansheng tensely frowned and he glanced at the sky without immediately replying. After a moment of silence, he let out a long sigh and said, “Originally, I planned on waiting until we arrived at the altar before saying anything, but I no longer have a choice. I will tell you everything.” 

When Wei Wuya and the others heard this, they glanced at each other with dismay.

Wang Tiansheng waved his sleeve in a flourish of silver light, summoning a plain scroll into his hand. The scroll was a meter long and shined with silver light.

“That is...” Wang Tiangu couldn’t help but cry out at the sight of the scroll.

Wang Tiansheng looked at Wang Tiangu and chuckled, “Of course you know what this is. You personally gave it to me, after all. Everything I know about the Spirit Ether Garden is from this scroll.”

When Wang Tiangu heard this, he was stunned. The scroll was the portrait of Master Cang Kun that had been inside his hidden lair in the Moulan Plains.

Wang Tiansheng tossed the scroll out and suspended it in the air in a ball of light. He then formed an incantation gesture and pointed at the scroll. With a crackle, the scroll quickly unfolded, revealing the portrait of a scholarly man wearing Confucian robes with a sword on his back as he looked to the sky at the rear of the portrait.

Wang Tiangu and the others widely opened their eyes as they stared at the portrait. But after a while, none of them were able to sense anything from it. But when Wei Wuya swept his spiritual sense past the portrait, his expression stirred and a trace of astonishment appeared on his face.

Wang Tiansheng stirred upon seeing Wei Wuya’s change in expression and he said, “As expected of a late Nascent Soul cultivator. Fellow Daoist Wei was able to discover the mystery quite quickly. I was only able to find the peculiarity of the scroll because I had cultivated a certain secret technique.”

“It’s nothing special. It’s like a spatial pocket magic tool that I had seen a long time ago. If Fellow Daoist Wang hadn’t mentioned it to me, I wouldn’t have been able to easily discover it.” Wei Wuya responded with an odd expression. 

Wang Tiansheng smiled and asked no further. He then raised his hand and released a black spell seal from his sleeve, striking at the scroll. He then coldly snorted and said, “Are you not going to come out? Do you want me to use devilfire to force you out?”

The others were alarmed to hear this and felt somewhat baffled. Wei Wuya also raised his brow in surprise and his face betrayed a trace of bewilderment.

Afterwards, an inconceivable event occurred. A man’s voice clearly left the scroll, “Isn’t this earlier than we had agreed? Why would you summon me before you arrived? Now that you’ve called out to me in front of so many people, do you want to call off our deal?”

Silver light shined from the scroll, and the scholarly man in the portrait suddenly turned around to reveal the face of a middle-aged man with long facial hair. However, he appeared quite displeased.

Not only were the remaining Ghost Spirit Sect disciples astonished by the scene, but Wang Tiangu’s jaw dropped as well with an expression of astonishment. As for Wei Wuya, he only revealed his shock for a short moment before calming down. He then stared at the portrait with a pensive expression.

Wang Tiansheng snorted, “Didn’t I repeatedly ask you if the route you gave me was completely safe? There was an invisible spatial tear here that slew my sect disciple.”

“When I walked this path, it was completely safe. How could there be a problem now?” The portrait’s lips moved to rebuke him.

“Then explain this.” The Ghost Spirit Sect Master sullenly glanced at the disciple's corpse that laid near the invisible spatial tear.

The portrait paused for a moment and muttered to himself before fading away from sight. Then in a flicker of light, an azure screen of light appeared in front of them.

Soon after, a sphere of green light shot out from the curtain of light and transformed into a silhouette of the scholarly man from the portrait. His body appeared incorporeal as if he were made entirely of light. The light was so faint that it was almost as if the image could be blown away with a single breath.

Wang Tiangu’s mouth dried and he uttered with shock, “How should I address you? Could it be you are truly Master Cang Kun? How were you able to maintain your soul past your lifespan and exist until now?”

“The time I can emerge from the scroll is limited. If you have any questions, ask your sect master. I will be taking a look at the spatial tear.” The scholarly man didn’t pay any attention to Wang Tiangu’s shock and looked in the direction of the spatial tear. He faintly frowned and spat out a ball of grey light from his mouth.

With a bang, the ball of grey light was consumed by the spatial tear. The scholarly man appeared baffled at the sight of this.

“How strange!” The scholarly man’s surprise soon disappeared and he calmly said, “In the past, there were no spatial tears here. It seems to be a rare newly formed tear. You don’t need to be too worried about it as it is merely a matter of coincidence. I will be returning now.” 

Woosh. His figure disappeared and the ball of green light flew back into the scroll as if unwilling to spend any more time outside than absolutely necessary.