Chapter 222: The Trial of the Mountains (1)
The cave was not huge.
As a matter of fact when Ji Yuan and his group had entered the cave, in less than an hour they had quickly exited the cave to the other side.
There was only a single passage and it was more like a tunnel.
On the other side of the cave, they soon came to a ridge and on this ridge was a golden bridge to the other side.
And on the other side were a hundred cultivators that were meditating.
The dark robe ferryman was seen on the other side and it seemed that he had an unhappy countenance.
When Ji Yuan and his group had crossed over to the other side, the dark robe ferryman muttered in the usual eerie tone. “You have passed the first trial.”
He could not resist adding. “There seem to be a little too many for the second trial…”
Ji Yuan and his group of course knew what he was referring to; they were not supposed to know that the real trial exit was actually below the chasm. A freak accident by an evil cultivator had caused the majority of the cultivators to pass the first trial and they had the dead cultivator to thank for.
The trial was designed to test all the cultivators regardless of their realm cultivation level. Moreover this was the first level of the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth and the expectations were for the fifth realm cultivators to pass.
Many of the cultivators had noticed Feng Minyue by now because she had forgotten to put on her veil after her swim and they were all looking in her direction as well as the direction of the other maidens in Ji Yuan’s group.
As Ji Yuan walked to join the existing group of cultivators, many of them could not resist passing a comment.
“Who is he?”
“Why is he in a company of a group of maidens?”
“He must be a lecherous man…”
“Maybe he is a eunuch. He has no beard at all…”
“His facial is too clean; he has to be a eunuch.”
Ji Yuan: …
Ji Yuan: …
Ji Yuan: …
I am a eunuch? Just because I have a beautiful face and is beardless?!
He suppressed the urge to bash the nearest cultivator that was commenting at him. After all, he did not want to end up in a fight with so many unruly cultivators.
So he could not grin and said with a soft sigh. “I have no other choice. These maidens are attracted to my beautiful looks and are following me. No matter how hard I am trying to shake them off, I cannot stop them from following me. I must be the most pitiful man in the entire Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth right now. Alas…sigh…”
The rest of the cultivators: …
The maidens in his group: …
Everyone was cursing him now; shameless! Thick skin! Egoistic! Narcissistic!
Ji Yuan laughed as he found an empty spot to stand.
Behind Ji Yuan’s group were the sights of thirty more cultivators; they too had jumped down behind Ji Yuan’s group into the chasm.
After a while, the dark robe cultivator echoed to everyone. “The rest of the cultivators have failed this trial and they will not be coming here anymore.”
Everyone was gasping; around twenty cultivators had failed one way or another.
The dark robe cultivator seemed to be frowning. “A little too many of you seem to have passed the first trial by an accidental act but I wonder how many of you will pass the second part of this trial.”
As he spoke, there were two portals that had appeared; one green and one golden.
“If you want to leave this trial, take the green trial and you will be rewarded for completing the first part of the trial. But if you want to stay in a safe place till the end of the entire Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth, you may take the golden portal.”
Then with an eerie laugh. “But if you want to take the second part of this trial which won’t be easy at all, you may follow me.”
As he laughed, he waited for the rest of the cultivators to pick the blue portal and the golden portal but none of the cultivators had made a move.
The dark robe ferryman: …
The dark robe ferryman: …
The dark robe ferryman: …
These cultivators were all the cream of the crop that had volunteered to enter the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth. They were all here for the profound treasures of the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth and they were not here to be a coward. Many of them even had the ambitions to reach to the highest level of the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth.
As a matter of fact, a third of these cultivators are of the sixth realm level and above and they are all eager to reach the third level of the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth where the profound treasures are rarer and more astonishing.
The dark robe ferryman muttered. “Then follow me.”
As he said that, he began to run through the narrow ridges of the mountains. “That is, if you able to catch up with me.”
In a blink of an eye, he was already very far and almost vanished to a dot!
Immediately all the cultivators were startled as they began to run after him panicky.
“Don’t stop or we’ll lose track of him!”
“There is a heavy fog in these mountains. If we do not catch up with him, we may become lost!”
“Get out of my way!”
“Stop staring; go after him immediately!”
Ji Yuan and his group had reacted almost immediately and they were among the first group of cultivators that were right behind the dark robe ferryman.
Mu Wan’Er was startled that her group was all experts in their lightless movement profound arts and they had no issue following the dark robe ferryman.
As a matter of fact, she seemed to be the slowest.
The dark ferryman was just walking rapidly but his strides were broad and he seemed to be running rapidly through the mountain paths. But that was only an illusion as he was moving very quickly.
Ji Yuan was a little anxious because it seemed that this dark ferryman was moving too fast and he did not seem to be doing his best yet.
And he was a little anxious for Mu Wan’Er as he did not want to abandon her.
Although Mu Wan’Er was not really part of his core group but since she had already joined his temporary group, he did not want to abandon her and he did not want anything untold to befall her.
So he made a mental note to watch out for her in case she was too far behind.
All of a sudden the dark ferryman had made a leapt across the two mountain ridges that had a chasm below and the distance was twenty yards.
Twenty yards were not a big issue for Ji Yuan and most of the maidens as they were all great saints and saintesses that could maintain a temporary burst of their profound animus to carry them across.
As though Mu Wan’Er could guess Ji Yuan’s thoughts, she said aloud. “I can go across on my own.”
Feng Minyue whispered to Ji Yuan. “This is only a level one trial so it should not be too difficult for even a fifth realm golden cultivator unless they did not put in any effort into their lightless profound art. This is something that most cultivators in my celestial fraternity will usually put their focus into first.”
Ji Yuan smiled weakly. “In my celestial fraternity, lightless profound arts are frowned upon and most of the cultivators in my celestial fraternity disdain it because it is a cowardice art.”
Feng Minyue smiled. “Still, this trial won’t be too difficult for the rest or else this won’t be a level one trial. The objective of this trial is to exhaust the profound strength of the cultivators so this must be something that you ought to be wary of.”
Ji Yuan nodded and offered his thanks before he chuckled. “You seem to be quite experienced. Have you been to the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth before?”
Feng Minyue nodded gently. “A few times.”
Ji Yuan: …
The rest of the maidens: …
Ling Feiyue could not resist asking from behind them. “So, how many times have you been to the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth?”
Feng Minyue smiled as she gave an elusive answer. “Not many times.”
Little Princess asked. “What is the highest level that you have been to?”
Feng Minyue smiled. “I’ve been to the highest level of the Empyrean Warrior Labyrinth already.”
Ji Yuan, the rest of the maidens: …
“My Sister Fan Yuqing is the one that had led me to the top the last time. In the past, there are no group restrictions so we are able to travel in a group. But now it is different.” Feng Minyue chuckled softly. “I am merely a follower.”
Shui Xisi gasped as she flashed next to Feng Minyue as she laughed, “You know Fan Yuqing? What a coincidence. I’m her half-sister Shui Xisi.”
Feng Minyue gasped. “Then you are…”
Shui Xisi laughed as she winked her eyes. “Secret.”
Ji Yuan: ???
The rest of the maidens: ???