Time passed. Eventually Bai Xiaochun explained everything that had gone on in the Eternal Immortal Domains to Song Junwan and Zhou Zimo, and gradually, their anger toward him faded.
When Song Junwan was told of the lengths Bruiser and Song Que had gone to to protect her, she wept. With Bai Xiaochun’s help, she was able to gaze upon Song Que from a distance as he lay there in the ninth floor of the tower.
Clasping Bai Xiaochun’s hand tightly, she wiped the tears from her cheeks and softly asked, “Will Que’er wake up eventually…?”
“Definitely!” Bai Xiaochun replied without the slightest hesitation.
Song Que hadn’t moved since being placed in the Daoist Tower of Life and Death, and in fact, hadn’t changed at all. Because of the fact that his body wasn’t decomposing, he looked very much like he was asleep.
Zhou Zimo was also there. She clasped hands and bowed to Song Que from a distance, and sighed. Zhou Zimo had already taken a liking to Bruiser. And he was able to sense the aura within her belly, and was immediately drawn to her. Although the two women often had a hard time understanding and getting along with Bai Xiaochun, both of them felt quite close to Bruiser.
What little bit of resentment still existed in their hearts began to melt away as Bai Xiaochun casually recounted how he had saved them.
The more they came to know Bai Xiaochun, the more they realized how he liked to tell dramatic stories about himself in a casual fashion. However, the truths behind those stories were still very touching.
Of course, the two women didn’t like each other much, and that was something that wouldn’t change overnight.
Bai Xiaochun knew that they had both experienced many hardships, and was also aware that if he didn't behave himself properly around them, he would likely find himself in the same situation as he had back in the days of the Blood Stream Sect and the Spirit Stream Sect, with Song Junwan and Hou Xiaomei. And that would be a big disaster.
Therefore, he did his best to behave perfectly. At the same time, he began to make preparations to leave the treasured fan!
He had been away from the Eternal Immortal Domains for a long time, and although he seemed to be in good shape emotionally, the truth was that he was extremely anxious. The safety of the people he cared about was of the utmost importance, but unfortunately, he had no idea how such people were doing. For example, Li Qinghou, the Giant Ghost King, the Grand Heavenmaster, Big Fatty Zhang, and even Gongsun Wan’er.
Before, his battle prowess had been insufficient to justify a return trip. But now, going back was one of his top priorities!
“The fan is whole again, and I can tell that I don’t need to return to the same spot in the Eternal Immortal Domains that I left from. Although I can’t casually perform a precise teleportation, I can lock down onto a general area….” He also needed to come up with a specific plan for what to do after returning.
Even after considerable thought, he wasn’t able to come up with any perfect ideas.
“Well,” he said, gritting his teeth, “I can fight archaeans now… so why can’t the Eternal Immortal Domains have a tripartite balance of power!?!?
“I need to occupy an entire immortal domain, and then call it the lands of Heavenspan!!” The more he thought about it, the more that idea began to overshadow all of the other scattered thoughts and plans he had come up with.
“If I established a new nation in the Saint-Emperor Dynasty, it would cause instability…. After all, the Vile-Emperor already doesn’t like me…. In that case, I need to carve out a chunk of land from him!” Slowly but surely, his plan was taking shape.
“It will all come down to one thing… the fight that will inevitably occur with the Vile-Emperor after I go back!!” He closed his eyes for some time to think about the matter. When he opened them, they shone brightly. All of his hesitation was gone now. The first thing he did was go to Song Junwan and Zhou Zimo to explain his plan. After he finished, they exchanged glances.
Neither of them did anything to persuade him to change his mind. They knew that he had no choice but to return eventually, and therefore, the best thing they could do was wish him well and not add to his anxiety.
Therefore, when he suggested that they stay behind in the fan, they pretended to not be worried about the situation, and did exactly as he asked.
Bruiser wanted to come along, but after all the dire circumstances he had been through, Bai Xiaochun couldn’t bring himself to agree. Instead, he asked him to stay behind in the fan. After the goodbyes were said, he didn’t delay any longer. Even as Song Junwan, Zhou Zimo, and Bruiser all looked on anxiously, he sent out some divine sense, and then faded away!
The Vile-Emperor Dynasty occupied three of the five flower petals that made up the Eternal Immortal Domains. However, only two were fully occupied. The other was a subject of contention with the Saint-Emperor Dynasty.
Of the two that were fully occupied, one held Vile-Emperor City, and the other was ruled by a celestial. Currently, the celestial stationed in that second of the two stable immortal domains was none other than Reverend Devourer!
On that very immortal domain was a barren plain in which two groups of cultivators were locked in magical combat. One group wore Daoist robes, while the other were clad in black garments. They were forces from two local sects, who despite both being part of the Vile-Emperor Dynasty, had been feuding for many years.
Currently at dispute was a spirit stone mine, and matters had escalated to the point where open war had broken out. The most powerful combatants in the frenzied fighting were in the Nascent Soul stage. High above them in the air were two devas, one of them an old man, the other middle-aged. They hovered there, hands clasped behind their backs as they surveyed the scene below.
These devas were the powerful backers of the two sects involved, which they essentially owned like slaves.
As devas, it wouldn’t be appropriate for them to get involved in the fighting. There were many situations like this in the Vile-Emperor Dynasty in which powerful experts controlled small sects that would eventually go to war. Not only would such wars serve to temper and train the cultivators of the various sects, but it was also an easy way to resolve differences.
Smiling faintly, the older man said, “Fellow Daoist Chen, I'm afraid that Redbud Mine won’t belong to you for much longer.”
“I think it’s a bit early to say for sure!” the middle-aged man replied, his expression somewhat unsightly. Clearly, the sect he owned was now at a disadvantage. Worse, the Nascent Soul cultivator from his opponent’s sect was just on the verge of achieving a breakthrough!
The other Nascent Soul cultivator, the one from the sect owned by the middle-aged man, was coughing up blood, and seemed to be just on the verge of losing the fight. Snorting coldly, the middle-aged man flicked his sleeve and prepared to leave, under the smiling gaze of the older deva.
However, that was when… a massive conglomeration of violet lightning began to descend from the sky onto the hundreds of cultivators involved in the battle.
As the lightning crashed down, the shocked cultivators below tried to leap to safety, with many being hit by the lightning and coughing up blood in response.
“What is this?!?!”
“What’s going on?!?!”
The entire battlefield was thrown into chaos, and even the two devas were completely taken aback, and quickly sent out divine sense to scan the area.
To their shock, they watched as the crashing violet lightning formed together into the shape of a huge door!!
Then, a blurry figure appeared within that door….
Everyone in the area was completely shocked, and even the devas felt their scalps tingling in fear.
Before anyone could do anything, the figure within the lightning grew clear and stepped forward, becoming visible for everyone to see!
He was tall and thin, with long black hair, and fair skin. He looked like a young man, with sparkling eyes, and an aura that could shake heaven and earth. Everyone who saw him was stunned by how his cultivation base crushed down on them with incredible pressure. Even the devas trembled as they were forced down onto the ground. The only thing they could think of was that this pressure vastly surpassed anything they had felt before, even from the preceptor that governed them….
Even the celestials they had observed from a distance didn’t seem to be on the same level.
“He has to be a celestial! But which one?!” That was what they were both thinking. However, not daring to mince words, the two devas quickly clasped hands and bowed.
“Greetings, exalted one!”
As Bai Xiaochun hovered there, eyes closed, he took a deep breath, which stirred memories of events from decades before. A moment passed, and then he opened his eyes. Sweeping his gaze across the crowd, he spoke in a growl that pierced all of their ears.
“Tell me… is this the second immortal domain of the Vile-Emperor Dynasty?”