Book 6, Chapter 90: Breakthrough

“Look, look! The contribution rankings have gone out!”

Within the Boundless Sect’s main camp, a massive crystal screen began to display a long list of rankings.

The rankings list of the Boundless Sect disciples’ contribution points had been refreshed, but only the top one hundred individuals had the right to appear on that list.

Every day around this time, the disciples would gather around to watch with great interest.

“Ye Fenghan with a total of 12321 contribution points takes first place!” Chang He crowed as he clapped Ye Fenghan on the shoulder.

“You’re not looking too bad yourself. Seventh suits you quite nicely,” Ye Fenghan replied.

The other disciples also took notice of this.

“A reward of ten thousand contribution points?”

“How come they were given so much?”

“They must have made an extraordinary contribution!”

“I’ve never heard of any contribution worth ten thousand points before.”

“Those guys have struck it rich this time.”

The disciples all animatedly discussed amongst each other.

Contribution points were accumulated by carrying out missions, and the numbers being advertised were what was left over after expenditure.

The Boundless Sect’s contribution points had always been very valuable and hard to come by. Often times, it would take quite a few valiant battle results to even earn a thousand.

Ye Fenghan had been on the higher end of the scale, but even then he only had around two thousand points. Now, these ten thousand contribution points, which had been given to him by Su Chen, were making everyone else quite envious. They couldn’t help but try to guess what kind of contribution Ye Fenghan had made to earn such a big reward.

Actually, the entire squad had been rewarded greatly. Chang He had been given three thousand cultivation points as well, propelling him into the top ten.

Naturally, they had been rewarded that many contribution points because of the matter involving the Astral Hall.

Only later on did Ye Fenghan discover that the Astrals were in fact planning on setting up an incredibly large formation in the Ringed Corridor Plains that was specifically targeted at them.

This formation was quite terrifying. As soon as it was activated, the entire Ringed Corridor Plains would be enveloped in it and subjected to a barrage of calamitous proportions.

No matter how strong the Boundless Sect was, they would have paid a tremendous price if they had been caught in this formation.

But it was for this reason that the formation was extremely costly to activate. The Astrals didn’t have enough wealth on hand to keep it in a constantly primed state.

Under normal circumstances, the formation would be firmly embedded under the ground in a completely dormant state. Activating it would require piecemeal excavation and activation.

As such, the startup process for this formation was quite lengthy and involved.

Ye Fenghan had discovered the Astrals just as they were in the process of activating the formation.

And his actions had affected the massive formation. When the Boundless Sect’s armies stormed onto the scene shortly afterwards and destroyed all of the formation inscriptions in the area, they were able to narrowly avoid this calamity.

They really had gotten lucky this time.

Many people believed that the Astrals had placed their ultimate trump cards in Wanlai Caves and never expected to encounter such danger all the way out in the Ringed Corridor Plains.

Su Chen, Li Chongshan, and the others couldn’t help but break out in a cold sweat when they thought of what could have happened. If it wasn’t for Ye Fenghan’s timely discovery and decisive action, who knew what their outcome would have been.

In comparison, ten thousand contribution points really wasn’t that much.

Even so, that was merely the beginning.

“Ye Fenghan, the Sect Master would like to speak with you,” a disciple said as he walked over.

Upon hearing this, the other disciples within earshot turned their envious gazes upon Ye Fenghan.

It was obvious that he was going to receive other awards as well.

The messenger led him to the palace. From there, they walked until they had reached an old, weathered building. The messenger stopped outside and said, “Sect Master, the person you have requested to meet with is here.”

“Come in,” Su Chen’s voice floated through the doorway.

Ye Fenghan entered and saw that Su Chen was standing in front of a massive stone table. Beside him stood Iron Cliff.

On the stone table was the flickering shadow from earlier. Even though no physical restrictions appeared to be in place, the shadow was completely incapable of escaping and could only thrash helplessly.

Ye Fenghan could sense some kind of energy shackling the shadow in place.

Sumeru Void.

Ye Fenghan had managed to guess correctly.

However, the Sumeru Void being used by the Sect Master was vastly different from the Sumeru Void that Chang He could use. The shadow was extraordinarily powerful, but it wasn’t even capable of moving in the face of Su Chen’s might and could do nothing but roar.

“You’re here.” Su Chen motioned towards Ye Fenghan. “Come and take a look at this guy.”

Ye Fenghan stepped over and stood next to Su Chen.

Su Chen asked, “Do you know anything about him?”

Ye Fenghan thought for a moment, then replied, “All I know is that this shadow is most likely an amalgam of six different Astrals. Beyond that, I don’t really know anything.”

“Mm.” Su Chen thought for a moment, then said, “The Astrals are basically immortal with respect to time. In order to extend their lifespan and restore the Arcana Kingdom’s glory, almost every Astral has chosen to walk down a similar path as they. As such, there is in fact a cultivation technique that the Astrals can use to merge bodies. So that phenomenon in and of itself is not so surprising. However, this particular merge is atypical.”

Ye Fenghan said, “Is Sect Master referring to this mixture of dark and light energy?”

The alternating light and darkness was difficult to describe or comprehend. Not only did the body’s composition appear to change as the darkness and light transitioned back and forth, but the Arcana Techniques that the Astral could unleash appeared to change as well.

If it had merely possessed these two systems of Arcana Techniques, it wouldn’t have been such a big deal. The main issue was that it seemed capable of interconverting between the two at will.

The light it had released only moments before could suddenly convert into darkness and attack again. Similarly, darkness appeared to be able to convert into light at any given moment in time.

This was the same as unleashing two simultaneous attacks at once and was a unique property of this shadow, which had never been observed before.

Naturally, Su Chen was unwilling to let such a prime specimen go, and he was resolved to do his due diligence on this research subject first.

When he heard Ye Fenghan’s question, Su Chen chuckled. “That’s correct. If my guess is right, the formation under the Ringed Formation Plains is probably designed to have tremendously explosive power. This method both maximizes the damage that the formation can do while decreasing the cost of operation of the formation. Your attack probably caused a portion of the formation to overflow with energy. Because of the immense threat to their life, the six Astrals chose to merge, but at the same time a portion of the formation’s energy also entered their body. Under normal circumstances, they should have immediately died, but because they were still within the formation, and the Origin Formation itself was capable of reconciling the two opposite forms of energy, these three combined to produce this uniquely harmonious entity.”

Even though Su Chen hadn’t seen it happen personally, he was more than capable of piecing the general situation together.

“So that’s how it is.” Ye Fenghan felt enlightened, and when he recalled what he had witnessed before, he knew that Su Chen’s guess was most likely correct.

“This Astral entity managed to perfectly combine light and darkness, harmonizing two totally incompatible forms of energy so that one is in the other and the other is in that one. How perfect!” Su Chen sighed with praise, and his gaze was filled with expectation.

Ye Fenghan didn’t actually know Su Chen that well, and he was a bit caught off-guard by Su Chen’s expression. He couldn’t resist asking, “Is this very important to Sect Master?”

“Yes, very much so!” Su Chen muttered in a low voice. “This merging of darkness and light is very much related to the Yin and Yang in the human cultivation system. And Yin and Yang......”

“Thought Manifestation!” Ye Fenghan yelped.

To ascend to the Thought Manifestation Realm, it was necessary to open one’s Yin and Yang. The overflow of energy was also involved in this process, just not nearly as extreme as what had happened with the Origin Formation was all.

“But doesn’t Sect Master already have a way for those without bloodlines to reach the Thought Manifestation Realm?” Ye Fenghan asked, confused.

Su Chen chuckled. “First of all, I actually never resolved the issue of breaking into the Thought Manifestation Realm without a bloodline. All I did was create a kind of medicine that could substitute for a bloodline and enable me to break into the Thought Manifestation Realm. Second of all, the mixture of light and darkness in this Astral entity far outstrips the Thought Manifestation Realm. If I can break down its fundamental principles and absorb it, then I will not only be able to create the Flying Immortal Cultivation Technique’s true sixth layer but, more importantly, upgrade the Thought Manifestation Realm itself.”

A Thought Manifestation Realm cultivator’s strength was very closely tied to the degree which their Yin and Yang overlapped.

But even peak-tier Thought Manifestation Realm cultivators half a step into the Ultimate Emperor Realm were incapable of fully reconciling the two opposing yet balanced entities. This was a fundamental problem of clashing essences.

If Su Chen was able to use the power of this mixture of light and darkness on breaking into the Thought Manifestation Realm, it would be a significant boost to the Thought Manifestation Realm’s power.

If the human cultivation system was like a multi-storied building, then Su Chen’s plan was to raise the height of the sixth floor altogether rather than turning the sixth floor into the seventh.

This was a sensational piece of news, and even Ye Fenghan was dazed when he heard this.

He fumblingly asked, “That isn’t going to be easy, is it?”

Unexpectedly, Su Chen replied, “Actually, it’s already done.”

It was already done?

Yes!

It was already done.

It was indeed that simple.

The shadow had been freshly created, and all of its secrets were on its body.

And Su Chen’s eyes just so happened to be the perfect tools for peering into those secrest.

They allowed him to see the intrinsic composition of anything he desired, and his consciousness crystal allowed him to remember everything he saw. As such, Su Chen’s research was always based on what he didn’t know yet.

Because the rate at which he grasped what was known was far too quick.

Once the secrets contained in the shadow’s body were revealed to Su Chen, the first thing he did was to analyze its makeup entirely in order to understand the underlying principles behind this fusion. He had been forced to spend some time trying to figure out how to adapt this transformation to a human.

But in the end, he had succeeded.

The sixth level of the Flying Immortal Technique had officially taken shape.

Not only so, but this Thought Manifestation Realm was even more profound than before.

“A person who cultivates the sixth level of the Flying Immortal Technique will be stronger than your average Thought Manifestation Realm cultivator. Not only so, but this strong foundation will make it easier to ascend to the Ultimate Emperor Realm,” Su Chen said with a wide smile.

Ye Fenghan was delighted when he heard this.

Su Chen glanced towards him. “Do you want to learn it?”

“Well...... I am still at the Light Shaking Realm, a far cry from reaching the Thought Manifestation Realm. I don’t even need to think about it right now,” Ye Fenghan replied as he lowered his head.

Su Chen chuckled. “You are not greedy or impatient. I like that. But since you are already at the peak, let me help you out a bit. Once you break into the Spirit Burning Realm, you’ll be ready to learn.”

“Ascend to Spirit Burning? Right now?” Ye Fenghan was stunned.

“That’s right!” As he spoke, he suddenly extended his palm and placed it on Ye Fenghan’s forehead.

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