Chapter 50: The Wonderland of Celestial Herbs
Many days had passed since they had entered the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth. Now they were on a grassy plateau that was surrounded by lofty misty mountains.
The reason why they had decided to go up to the mountains and had discovered this plateau was because Ye Jing told them that she had sensed an unusual pure spiritual force in the vicinity. And that was why they were here.
This plateau was not very big and was hidden by the misty peaks of its surrounding mountains. It took them a while to find a path to it.
But when they had reached the plateau, it felt as though all their efforts were worth it for they soon saw thousands of different rare celestial herbs on the plateau!
Everyone was astonished at the find and it was as though they had struck gold. This was really the wonderland of numerous celestial herbs except that there was a little problem; the majority of these rare celestial herbs were mostly in spirit forms. They could be seen but not felt…
Ye Jing took a quick glance and asked, “These rare celestial herbs here are weird. They are spirits and have an incorporeal body…so how do we pick them?”
Feng Minyue was looking at the rest for the same answer too, “How do we pick something that is incorporeal?”
Xiaofang was wondering the same as well while Xuan Danfeng and Fan Yuqing were smiling mysteriously.
Ye Jing looked at them with a weak smile, “My dear sisters! Stop beating around the bushes and tell us how to pick these rare herbs. I am about to die of curiosity already.”
Xuan Danfeng laughed softly, “Alright, alright. The celestial herbs that are in the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth are different from the outside and follow a special heavenly law here. When the spirit herbs reach a thousand year old then it will materialize into a physical body. You simply can’t find any celestial herb that is less than a thousand year old in the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth because it doesn’t exist at all.”
Ye Jing and Feng Minyue were really startled. Looking at the wonderland of celestial herbs here, it did not seem that anyone had been here for thousands of years.
As if knowing their thoughts, Xuan Danfeng laughed softly. “We are really in luck today. It seems that we may even find five thousand years, ten thousand years and even a hundred thousand years celestial herbs here.”
Ye Jing and Feng Minyue were gasping softly and their eyes were already looking excitingly all over the place.
Ye Jing asked, “So how do we distribute the treasure herbs that we have found?”
Xuan Danfeng smiled, “Even though this place isn’t big but there are tens of thousands of celestial herbs here. It is not easy to find a really rare celestial herb. Most of the herbs here are quite common and can also be easily found elsewhere in the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth and the celestial realm. Therefore it isn’t considered to be too precious except for the ‘thousand year old’ label. We should split up and go find whatever we can or need. Then it should belong to that individual. What do you say?”
Feng Minyue nodded, “I do agree. But if any of the sisters…” she looked at Xiaofang before continuing, “and Young Hero Xiaofang do find the Heavenly Fragrance Blossom in this vicinity, please do let me know. I need it for my cultivation arts.”
Ye Jing was smiling, “I am all for the idea too.”
She turned and said to Feng Minyue, “If I see the Heavenly Fragrance Blossom then I will surely pick one for you.”
Fan Yuqing nodded gently, “This sounds great. Then we should split up and check the vicinity ourselves.”
Xiaofang looked at Ye Jing, “I’ll follow my Holy Consort.”
Xuan Danfeng smiled and clapped her hands delightfully, “Let’s us explore the vicinity then.”
Everyone nodded and began to walk in different directions.
When Ye Jing was finally alone with Xiaofang, she winked at Xiaofang. “So Young Hero Xiaofang, how are you for the past few days?”
Xiaofang smiled, “Jing’Er, I really miss you. With everyone around, we can’t even have a proper conversation. I can’t even call you by your name at all.”
Ye Jing smiled as they took a slow stroll through the fields of celestial flora. She said quietly, “The celestial scents of these celestial herbs are really intoxicating. Don’t you think so? If you spot any rare celestial herb, you must let me know.”
Xiaofang said quietly, “For sure I will let Jing’Er knows.”
Then he asked quietly, “Jing’Er, are you upset with me? I can sense you don’t really want to talk with me…”
Ye Jing averted her glances, “That’s not true at all. I’m just feeling stressed.”
Xiaofang asked curiously as he looked at her, “Stressed? Meaning?”
Ye Jing nodded lightly, “I wonder how Yu’Er, Li’Er, Elder Chu Yunfeng and the rest of my protégés are doing. Once you are a clan leader, you will also be responsible for the lives of all the protégés in the clan. Do you get me? These two old freaks from the Devil isle are really very formidable. Now I have no idea how to get the Heavenly Decrees from them and to get our Little Fenghuang back.”
Xiaofang said with great resolve, “I’ll surely get the heavenly decrees from them. I can defeat the two old freaks.”
She uttered a soft sigh, “It is good that you got the resolution but you got to be pragmatic as well. Without your immortal sword, do you really think you have a chance? Even if you have your immortal sword, do you think that you can fight Xiao Shuai alone?”
Xiaofang said firmly, “Even if it takes me 10 years, I will train myself to do it.”
“10 years…maybe we need more than 10 years to reach the Ascend Divinity. After our Traverse Divinity, there is still the Seventh Sense Divinity and the Crisis Divinity before we can reach the Ascend Divinity…” Ye Jing exhaled deeply. “I’m afraid that this is going to take us more than 10 years unless we happen to have a lucky occurrence. But even if we can reach the Ascend Divinity, we still need to attain to the sacred saint level at the same time in order to have a fighting chance.”
Xiaofang quietly said, “I know that the two old freaks are peaked sacred saints and they have also cultivated to the Ascend Divinity. Each of them is like two sacred saint fighters.”
Ye Jing nods lightly, “Either way, attaining as a Sacred Saint or the Ascend Divinity will take us some time. But so what if we can reach? We will only be at the initial level while they are peaked. The power disparities between us are simply too great to be overcome. Even if we can pick up an epitome martial divine skill, the gap will still be there.”
“And…” she sighed with a slow pause before murmuring. “Nothing. I guess that I am just being stressed.”
She wanted to tell Xiaofang that lately she had the same dream over and over again; in that dream she was hovering above a black coffin. It was as though she had witnessed her own death…
Xiaofang said quietly, “Maybe just the two of us won’t be enough but we can always find new allies. I’m sure that the Devil isle has plenty of enemies. Take for example, the Goddess Palace and the Melancholy Valley.”
Ye Jing looked thoughtfully at Xiaofang for a while before she smiled weakly, “We can ignore the Goddess Palace. They look pathetic weak and even need our help to seize the Heavenly Decrees. As for the Melancholy Valley…alas I’m afraid that my Celestial Teacher Yi Si has already ascended to the immortal realm by now…”
Xiaofang sighed before his eyes brightened, “Maybe the Saintess Yuqing will be able to help us?”
Ye Jing paused in her tracks before she turned at Xiaofang to ask, “What do you think of her?”
“Saintess Yuqing. What do you think of her?”
Xiaofang blinked his eyes, “Is Jing’Er unhappy with me for treating her injuries? I swear that I will only love Jing’Er forever…”
Ye Jing gave a faint smile, “Don’t be too hasty to swear. I can tell that she is interested in you.”
Xiaofang smiled bitterly, “Jing’Er, your worries are unfounded. It is…impossible between us. Moreover, surely you know my heart?”
Ye Jing said softly, “I have never doubt you. What if I am not around one day then who will take care of you?”
Xiaofang was stunned, “Jing’Er, why do you say that all of a sudden?!”
She said melancholy, “One day if I am not around then she may be able to take care of you in my stead. I say, she is actually not a bad person. Her only bad parts which are also her main weaknesses are that she is a very complex person and she is also a villainess.”
Xiaofang lowered his swollen eyes and said quietly, “Jing’Er, you are hiding something from me. I can sense the throbbing of your heart through our dual cultivation. You don’t want your Xiaofang anymore?”
Ye Jing smiled weakly, “Of course not. I’m just asking what you think of Saintess Yuqing.”
Xiaofang replied slowly, “I really don’t know. I am really surprised when she chooses to fight alongside with us. To tell the truth, she is difficult to read. To tell the truth, it is my mother that had caused her to be in this state.”
Ye Jing was startled, “What did you say? Really?!”
Xiaofang nodded, “I have thought that she hates my mother and I…”
Ye Jing smiled and did not say anything. Yes, she is difficult to read but the way she looks at you is different when she is looking at the others and more like forlorn maiden…
She gave a soft laugh, “Let’s not forget why we are here. We are supposed to be finding rare celestial herbs here.”
Xiaofang suddenly put his nose in the air, “Jing’Er, did you sniff that? It is like a heavenly scent…”
Ye Jing nodded as she quickly looked around. In the next instant she had spotted a wondrous plant that was hidden among the spirit flora. She reached out with her divine sense and instantly she was gasping, “This plant is ten thousand years old…”
Xiaofang asked curiously, “What the name of this celestial plant?”
Ye Jing smiled weakly as she slowly remove the soil around it, “The scent of this celestial plant is so heavenly. I think we may have found the Heavenly Fragrance Blossom for Feng Minyue. Well, she will be astonished for sure.”
With utmost care, she transplanted it into her spatial jade belt, taking care not to damage its roots. She mused, “What luck! A ten thousand years Heavenly Fragrance Blossom!”
Xiaofang said, “We have only found it because of its heavenly scent. To tell the truth, it is quite a tedious work trying to separate which of the celestial plants are spiritual and which are the materialized. We got to touch every single one of them to know…”
Ye Jing laughed softly as she looked keenly around, “That is actually the challenge. We can spend six months here and we still can’t harvest them all. But no matter what, don’t give up so easily!”
Xiaofang nodded but they had continued to take slow walk across the fields of flora. They were happy to walk in this manner because they had not been enjoying a quiet walk like this for a long time and at this moment, they could feel the burning hearts for each other…
Unknown to them at this time, their Soul Dual Cultivation had suddenly overcome its forth rank boundary to reach the fifth rank…
All of sudden Ye Jing could feel a tingling within her spirit inner core. It was her Eternal Lotus…
When she had suddenly bended down, Xiaofang was alarmed as he panicked asked after her. “Jing’Er, are you alright?!”
When Ye Jing had bended over on the ground, a Fire Deviant Fungus came into her sight of view.
But she quickly turned to smile at Xiaofang, “Not to worry. I’m alright. Look at this Fire Deviant Fungus…this is large…”
It may look small and was only as big as a fist but the growth rate of this Fire Deviant Fungus was very slow, growing just a little every hundred years from a thumb size. This looks like a million year old Fire Deviant Fungus…
She gently touched it but her hand just passed through it; it was a spirit Fire Deviant Fungus…
How was it possible? Shouldn’t this be at least a million year old?
Xiaofang commented with a curious look, “It doesn’t seem to have a physical body yet so we can’t pick this…”
Ye Jing deliberated for a while, “Obviously this spirit Fire Deviant Fungus is more than a thousand year old but yet we are unable to pick it. This Fire Deviant Fungus may have evolved itself with the ability to return to spirit form…”
Then she smiled at Xiaofang, “Do you know that if we can pick this Fire Deviant Fungus for you, it can further refined your extreme positive intricate energies in you. This will be a big boost for your cultivation as well. At the same time this Fire Deviant Fungus has plenty of other benefits as well.”
She really wanted to get this Fire Deviant Fungus for Xiaofang as she touched it again…
There was a sudden electrical pulse in her finger as she felt the extreme negative of her Eternal Lotus pulsing through her fingers, giving her a startled shock as blue glowing light began to envelop around her fingers…
More shocking was that the Fire Deviant Fungus also had a reaction and it was now giving off red dots of glowing light!
It had materialized into its physical form!
“Xiaofang, quick!…” Ye Jing cried out excitingly.
Xiaofang did not hesitate at all as he grabbed the Fire Deviant Fungus. But to his utter surprise, the Fire Deviant Fungus suddenly burst into streams of red light as it suddenly entered into his body and into his spiritual inner core.
Ye Jing was startled, “The Fire Deviant Fungus has entered into your spiritual inner core and become one with you?”
Isn’t it the same as her Eternal Lotus?
Xiaofang could feel a sudden strong vitality that was enveloping him and even his depleted internal energies was restored as his positive energies had suddenly surged to new heights. There was a burst of flaring light that was so brilliant that Xiaofang was suddenly enveloped in white aura before he floated gently upward as he gasped for air…
“Ahhhhhhh!!!” Xiaofang gasped aloud.
Ye Jing gasped panicky, “Xiaofang, are you alright?”
Fan Yuqing, Xuan Danfeng and Feng Minyue had seen the brilliant flare of light and they had heard the suddenly cry that was from Xiaofang so they had all rushed here in a panicky hurry.
Fan Yuqing was the first to ask, “What happens to Xiaofang?!”
All of a sudden Xiaofang floated gently down and landed on his knees on the ground as he grasped for air…
Ye Jing and everyone was gasping!
That was because his eyes had turned a brilliant golden in color and even his aura was on the level of the golden celestial!
Feng Minyue stared at Xiaofang in disbelief, “He has become a golden celestial?! What has happened?”
Ye Jing muttered weakly, “I may have feed him some million year saint treasure mushroom by accident.”
Xuan Danfeng was staring blankly, “This is really unbelievable…a celestial herb that can transform an immortal celestial to a golden celestial in an instant…”
Xiaofang muttered and looked at them in bewilderment, “Huh? I am a golden celestial now?”
He closed his eyes to gauge his celestial level himself before he muttered in wonder, “I’ve reached the initial stage of the golden celestial level now…”
Fan Yuqing had immediately landed her fingers on Xiaofang’s back as she said, “This may be a little too wondrous. We have better check him for any side effects.”
After a while she said slowly, “There is nothing wrong with him. In fact, his spiritual strength is unusually pure and strong. He really got a lucky occurrence…”
Ye Jing smiled as she took out the Heavenly Fragrance Blossom, “Sister Minyue, this is for you. I’ve found it earlier.”
Feng Minyue was gasping and even her fingers were trembling, “Is it really for me?”
Then as she examined it closely with her eyes, she got a further shocked as she gasped suddenly. “It is a ten thousand years Heavenly Fragrance Blossom!”
Ye Jing laughed softly, “Of course it is. It is a gift from your sister to you.”
Feng Minyue was clearly touched and as she took it, there was a tiny tear at the corner of her eyes. “Thank you so much. This really means a lot to me. I will always remember this kindness of yours and will never forget this huge debt. I, Heavenly Fragrance Princess Feng Minyue swear to the heavens and the earth.”
Ye Jing smiled weakly, “That’s alright. I am just lucky to find it.”
Xuan Danfeng was smiling weakly, “I guess that the celestial herbs that I’ve found cannot compare to what you have found.”
Fan Yuqing was looking secretly at the Heavenly Fragrance Blossom as she thought, “This Heavenly Fragrance Blossom…it isn’t as simple as using it for your cultivation art. Feng Minyue if I’m not wrong then you…”