Aerial Rain
Translating Web Novel

THDP Ch 157 Part 3 – Who Is Your Most Trusted Person? (III)

“Why hasn’t Meng Qiqi returned yet?!” Sikong Xing also felt the changes. She stomped her foot anxiously, looking around, “Where did she go? The fourth challenge hasn’t started, and yet… and yet…” She bit her lower lip, even she could feel the shift in the atmosphere.

Chu Tianfeng’s expression was dark. As the young master of the Fentian Palace, he had seen similar situations before. Here, people could even turn against fellow disciples from the same sect, let alone competitors from outside their circle. “Hey!” Chu Tianfeng approached Qin Xiumo, “What do you think?”

“Not much.” Qin Xiumo’s expression was slightly colder than usual, his gaze heavy as he looked around at the crowd who occasionally glanced his way, “I’ll do what I can…” He left the rest of his words unsaid.

Chu Tianfeng snorted softly, filled with regret. Why the heck was he so eager to finish? What if something really happened later and he couldn’t do anything about it?! He paced back and forth restlessly, a cold light suddenly flashing in his eyes. He extended his left hand, his long fingers spread out, and a red lotus appeared above the palm of his hand, “If something really happens later, I won’t show mercy.” He declared; his voice was cold, his words almost through clenched teeth.

Sikong Xing, who had known Chu Tianfeng for quite a while now, had never seen the young master of Fentian Palace like this. She shivered unconsciously at the sight of him, “What… what do you mean?”

“Good.” Qin Xiumo didn’t answer her, but he slightly lifted the corners of his mouth, “That suits me fine too.”

“You guys?!” Sikong Xing was befuddled, “What do you mean?”

“You don’t need to know.” Chu Tianfeng, having made up his mind, seemed less irritable than before, “This is what we have to do.”

“What do you mean, Chu Tianfeng?!” Sikong Xing was displeased, “We’ve been through life and death together, you two better not think about leaving me out of whatever you’re planning!”

“You’ll find out soon enough,” Chu Tianfeng replied, giving her a glance.

“You guys are going to annoy me to death. Why can’t you just stop being mysterious and tell me straight up?!” Sikong Xing complained.

The three stood a bit away from the crowd, speaking in deliberately hushed tones so that no one else could hear. Although Sikong Xing still didn’t know what was happening, she could tell that things might be more serious than she thought. She became vigilant, warily scanning the surroundings, “Meng Qiqi isn’t in any trouble, right? Why hasn’t she returned yet?” By then, nearly all the cultivators who had entered Ten Absolutes Mountain were there except Meng Qi, who presumably hadn’t yet left the third challenge.

As if in response to Sikong Xing’s words, a soft bell suddenly reverberated across the grassland, followed by a cold female voice: “Ten Absolutes Mountain Battlefield, pre-battle preparations, begin!”

The voice was not loud. It was very melodious, yet devoid of any emotion, sounding as cold and stern as ice.

As her words ended, the grassland, which had been quiet for a while, suddenly buzzed with noise.

Ten Absolutes Mountain Battlefield?!

What is that?!

The crowd looked at one another, all seeing the same confusion and bewilderment in each other’s eyes. Everyone knew that once you left Ten Absolutes Mountain, you wouldn’t remember anything that happened there. But it was assumed for millennia that Ten Absolutes Mountain was meant for climbing.

A battlefield, what the hell is going on?!

But this place wasn’t their sect, and the mysterious voices coming one after another were not their teachers and elders. No one here would be so kind to explain what was happening to them. The cold voice continued: “The battlefield will officially start after one incense stick of time. There will be two camps, those who passed the third trial will be the Heavenly Camp, and those who did not pass will be the Earthly Camp.”

Not passed the third trial?

The crowd realized something and looked up at the sky; who was in the Heavenly Camp and who was in the Earthly Camp was quite clear now, wasn’t it? Those few still hanging in the sky. So, this meant… six people against the rest of them?!

Several people suddenly felt fortunate; it seemed not passing the third challenge wasn’t such a bad thing after all. Who knew Ten Absolutes Mountain would pull such a stunt? Even though the six of them were geniuses, they were now at a numerical disadvantage!

“Next, the rules will be announced,” the cold voice continued: “First, cultivators from the Heavenly and Earthly Camps may use any means to attack each other, including but not limited to magic weapons, artifacts, poisons, venomous insects, and beasts… Injuries may be treated with medicinal pills, potions, artifacts, and such, with effects the same as outside Ten Absolutes Mountain. Cultivators from the Heavenly Camp will have three chances to revive, while those from the Earthly Camp will be eliminated upon defeat and will lose the opportunity to continue participating in the challenges of Ten Absolutes Mountain.”

The crowd was once again taken aback; so, they would be immediately sent away if they lost? Yet, when considering the fact that the opposing side had only six members, even if each had three lives, their total was still less than twenty, which paled in comparison to the sheer number disadvantage. On their side, just a rough count was over a hundred people. Even the fellow sect members of those six wouldn’t necessarily help them, given that Ten Absolutes Mountain greatly benefits individuals; nobody would want to give up the chance, even for their close friends. 

The crowd had mostly swept away their earlier disappointment and became spirited again. Even if their opponents had three chances each, the situation was clearly in their favor!

Each of the ten major sects from the four realms was given a quota of three disciples to send to the Ten Absolutes Mountain. Along with some additional slots granted by Jingyuetian, there were a total of one hundred thirty cultivators who had entered this time. Apart from Meng Qi and Yan Xuan, the weakest among them were cultivators at the peak of the Nascent Soul stage, with the majority being at the Spirit Severing stage, and there were even a few who had reached the Void Comprehending stage.

All of them, without exception, were the most promising talents of their respective sect, the cream of the crop of young disciples who represented the future of the Three Thousand World. Just gathering ten of them together formed a formidable force, but there were 124 of them in the Earthly Camp. This group includes spell cultivators, sword cultivators, and medical cultivators — lacking nothing in offense, defense, or healing. Even if the disciples of the six decide to help them, the Earthly Camp still holds an absolute advantage.

And thus, the crowd was suddenly invigorated. This was the Ten Absolutes Mountain, a place that could only be entered once every hundred years, except by those from Jingyuetian. Furthermore, it was a once-in-ten-thousand-year event this time — if they successfully defeated their rivals, the benefits they could gain from Ten Absolutes Mountain would be absolutely unimaginable.

Moreover…

Some people felt a secret thrill. The six individuals assigned to the Heavenly Camp, except for Meng Qi, were the famous geniuses among the current generation of the Three Thousand Worlds. These bright stars had consistently overshadowed their peers ever since they embarked on the path of cultivation. Although not everyone felt jealous, the trial set up by the Ten Absolutes Mountain provided a great opportunity to test their skills against those geniuses. Many disciples eagerly anticipated the opportunity to win against them in this relatively fair competition.

As soon as that cold voice finished announcing the first rule, the crowd’s gazes turned expectant. Yet no one spoke first. Everyone stood quietly, listening as the icy voice continued: “Second, the Heavenly Camp attacks, the Earthly Camp defends. If the Heavenly Camp cannot breach the defenses within twenty-four hours, the roles switch.”

Before anyone could react, Sikong Xing nearly jumped up: “The Heavenly Camp attacks?!”

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