Painting Of The Nine Immortals - Chapter 43
Chapter 43: The Ambush
The Hidden Territory; a wondrous and magical Cosmo.
Perhaps risen from the dust of heaven and earth, or maybe a space where souls
of the dead linger, the Hidden Territory contains highly concentrated doses of
Qi. It is a favorite amongst the adventurous.
It is where cultivators meet their fate.
Rare plants with unimaginable healing powers are encountered here. Nowhere
else could one find more priceless ingredients for medicine.
The Hidden Territory is also home to mythical beasts. Unlike beasts of the
outside world, the creatures living here have magical Qi flowing through their
veins. An cultivator who succeeds in killing one of these beasts would inherit
the Qi of his victim and slowly become invincible.
Perhaps the most precious of all its wonders, within the walls of the Hidden
Territory, is powerful and exquisite artifacts that are exclusive to the Hidden
Territory and are awaiting discovery. Only a lucky few have ever encountered
There exist four types of Hidden Territories: Heaven, Earth, Mystery, and Gold.
Gold is the least sophisticated form, which describes the one located in the City
of Qing. Only cultivators under the age of 20, who have completed the
foundational levels of cultivator training, are allowed to compete here. Anyone
else would be denied entry.
Time allowed inside the different types of Hidden Territories differ as well. For
an entry level field such as Gold, a month is the maximum length of time. The
consequence of overstaying is death. As a result, time is closely observed by all
who enter here.
All cultivators who possessed a Token had entered at once. Ling Xian has
disguised himself inside the moving crowd without inviting suspicion.
Guided by the force of the shifting crowd, Ling Xian arrived at the glowing gate
and, with an overpowering sense of excitement, launched himself through the
A force propelled Ling Xian through the path to the other side, separating him
from the rest.
When he opened his eyes again, Ling Xian found himself on top of a mountain
peak. Before he could regain his footing, he felt an icy gust of wind pierce
through his body.
Looking down, there was nothing but layers of cloud and fog floating above
what appeared to be a bottomless valley.
Ling Xian felt his sweat turn to ice. [How did I end up so high up?How
fortunate to have landed anywhere at all? How fortunate to not have fallen
thousands of miles to my death.]
The storm continued to bellow, tossing him from side to side. One misstep and
he would be dead.
’’How do I get down from here?’’ Ling Xin cursed. Looking around, he noticed
the landscape inside the Hidden Territory didn't mirror the surroundings of
the outside in the slightest way.
The Qi here was much richer. Spiked mountains with steep sides extended
thousands of miles into the sky. Giant trees, and ancient plants, compared to
the outside world, appeared to predate life itself - nature at its finest.
The terrifying sound of a beast broke the silence.
One by one, other beasts responded. Deafening cries of unknown creatures
filled the air.
Ling Xian trembled. His hair stood up at the back of his freezing neck. He
understood. The creatures were defending their territories against this sudden
influx of human intruders.
The competition had officially begun!
Not only must one evade the deadly creatures that roam these lands, but they
must also escape the murderous intentions of his fellow cultivators.
A screeching roar pierced through the wind.
In the distance, a massive and hideous birdlike creature could be seen
pouncing towards Ling Xian. There was no time for a closer look. The beast
was coming in for a kill.
Ling Xian could feel fear traveling throughout his body. He could not believe
The giant birdlike creature resembled the shape of a crane with bright red
feathers and a cold and murderous gaze. Without a doubt, this was the most
feared beast in these lands.
The Bare Winged Crane!
This was a beast of a certain maturity. Most likely one of the eighth-realm.
The giant bird arrived within arms reach in the blink of an eye. His arrival
forced a fearsome gust of wind, with the powers of a hurricane, nearly
knocking Ling Xian over the edge of the mountain peak and sending him
towards his death.
’’It's coming for me?’’
Ling Xian frowned angrily. Deciding whether to take refuge inside the Painting
of the Nine Immortals or calling on Liao Cang Qiong's powers to assist him in
his defense. Unexpectedly, the crane did not launch an attack. Instead, it threw
him a casual glance, flapped its magnificent wings, and flew away.
Ling Xian understood clearly what the casual glance insinuated.
Contempt, disdain, pity... as if it was looking down at an ant; an unworthy prey.
Ling Xian was furious. He had to fight the urge to call on his Sword of
Extinction and destroy the arrogant creature.
Of course, that was just a thought. Ling Xian could have never won that battle.
’’What sort of place is this? This is too dangerous!’’ Ling Xian shook his head,
and muttered to himself, ’’this damned place, won't let in anyone with more
than foundational training, but lets out such dangerous beasts. Do they expect
us to leave here alive?’’
But this was unfair of him to say. This encounter was sheer bad luck. Upon
entering through the gate, Ling Xian had unfortunately been transported to
the most dangerous location inside the Hidden Territory, thus encountering
the Territory's most feared beast.
The Hidden Territory is a universe of average size. Its inhabitants are
commonly creatures of the ninth-realm and a few creatures from the eighthrealm.
They were all similar to the skills of the cultivators allowed inside. The
creatures also rarely step out of their usual habitats. Ling Xian had
experienced some rotten luck indeed.
Ling Xian was fortunate to have been deemed unworthy of prey by the Bare
Winged Crane. Blood would have been spilled otherwise.
’’Should figure out how to get down from here. It's too dangerous this high up.’’
Ling Xian pondered a moment. Carefully, he circled the peak, searching for a
safe way down.
Suddenly, he felt a black, shadowy figure move towards him at the speed of
’’Oh no!’’ Ling Xian shouted. However, there was nothing to be done except
watch as the black lightning pierced through his heart. Leaving behind a blood
clot in the shape of a flower suspended next to his chest.
’’This is...the Xuan Ming Snake!’’
Ling Xian stumbled backward while clutching his chest. Coming face to face
with the dark, monstrous snake, his expression froze.
The snake was roughly 30 feet in length, and its skin was a shade of deep
charcoal with sparkling blue patterns. It curled up on top of a massive rock and
examined this intruder with a deadly gaze.
The Xuan Ming Snake!
Legend has it this creature shares the same blood as the ancient Winged
Serpent- a feared and powerful beast of mythical origins.
Commonly a predator of the ninth-realm, a Xuan Ming Snake could evolve to
become a predator of the eighth-realm.
The Xuan Ming Snake is known to produce a lethal venom- an instant,
irreversible and incurable poison. Death comes swiftly to those who are bitten.
All snakes fear birds. The Xuan Ming Snaked had intended to challenge Ling
Xian earlier, but recoiled as it spotted the approaching crane. However now,
this human prey was all his.
’’You foolish human. You've been injected with my venom. I'm going to watch
The beast let out a strange and chilling laughter. It was close to entering the
Shockingly, Ling Xian's face began to relax as the look of worry disappeared.
’’It's only venom, what's to fear?’’ He smiled, exhaling a sigh of relief.
The snake began to feel a panicky sensation creep up on it. ’’Why are you not
afraid? How is this possible? You can't feel nothing!’’
’’And yet, I feel nothing,’’ Ling Xian smirked. He was not afraid of a little drop
His body is protected with the world's most potent antidote. What did he have
Ling Xian threw up his sleeves and shaped a fireball in between his palms.
Silvery strands of fire slithered toward his chest, extracting the poison and
The snake's dilated pupils contracted in an instant. It could not understand
what was inside Ling Xian's body that made him immune to its venom. Terror
rained down on the creature.
It had met its nemesis!
In a moment of panic, the Xuan Ming Snake lifted his tail, swung it around,
aimed at Ling Xian's head and smashed down on it.
Maintaining his composure and without moving an inch, Ling Xian snatched
up its tail in his vapory grasp and flung it outwards with all his might.
’’Haha, foolish human, you are trapped.’’ The snake let out a devilish laugh. As
it was flung into the air, the creature spun around in midair, seized Ling Xian
by his waist and began strangling him with its tightening grip.
’’What a magnificent snake, it would make a tasty stew.’’ Ling Xian chuckled to
himself. This close to the beast, Ling Xian was overwhelmed by a sense of
disgust. He collected his thoughts, summoned his powers and generated a
protective layer between him and the snake.
’’Vile human, I don't believe you are immune to my venom.’’ The snaked
opened his gargantuan mouth and spat out a murky haze that plunged into
Ling Xian's body.
He felt a similar palpitation of the heart and became restless.
’’If you insist on death, then let me assist you.’’ Ling Xian's pupils dilated,
simultaneously unleashing the magical Flame of Purity.
Silver flames burst out of his pores, masking his body.
The temperature in the air surged around the pair. In an instant, it melted
every last drop of the dark, poisonous cloud.
The Xuan Ming Snake let out a heart-wrenching scream and recoiled in pain.
Retreating behind a large rock, the creature hopelessly eyed the silver flames
that have now entrapped it.
’’Damn him! What is this?’’
The Xuan Ming Snake was now drowning in fear. It had never encountered an
opponent of such skills and caliber. It has feared nearly nothing, and no one,
The pride of its existence, its poisonous venom, was powerless against this
The snake has indeed met its nemesis. This thought made the beast tremble in
terror. Was there a worse way to die?