Old Man Fu replied, “Although the horse is extremely skilled in concealment techniques and leaves no tracks as it travels, it isn’t too difficult for me to capture given enough time. But the problem is that its nest lies in the Myriad Poisons Valley’s Yin Yang Cave. I cannot chase after it there, and with its exceptional intelligence, the horse will only journey to the caves entrance at most and won’t take even a step out.”
“The Yin Yang Cave?” Bai Yaoyi’s complexion paled and Cultivator Yuan gasped as well.
Having never heard of this place, Han Li bafflingly asked, “What is this Yin Yang Cave? Is it so fearsome?”
“Fellow Daoist Han doesn’t know of the Yin Yang Cave?” Bai Yaoyi yelped in surprise and then she said with calmer voice, “Ah, I’ve nearly forgotten that you were from overseas. The Yin Yang Cave is widely known as one of the seven most dangerous places in the Great Jin. Common cultivators do not return once they enter.”
“What is so dangerous about it?” Han Li curiously asked.
Old Man Fu explained, “As suggested from its name, it is a place where Yin and Yang clash. Let alone everything else, the soul-chilling Yin winds that blow yearlong are enough to scatter a Nascent Soul. The cave is also host to several kinds of vicious ghosts. Even if a living person is able to endure the Yin winds after entering the cave, the ghosts will devour them.”
Cultivator Yuan snorted and said, “Not just that but several kilometers deep, there are countless chains of intertwining passages and caves. There were even cultivators that have somehow managed to make it to the bottom, but were unable to clearly explore the depths. The Yin winds would obstruct them from releasing their spiritual sense, and they could see no more than an ordinary mortal. There were even those that said the depths of the cave conceal a fearsome ghost monarch. However, this had forever remained unconfirmed as most are unwilling to brave the risks.”
Bai Yaoyi relaxed her brow and added, “There is also little of value that was discovered in the cave. In ancient times, it was the location of extremely rare ores, but only inferior veins remain. Now that Brother Fu has discovered an Umbra Yin Horse, it would appear that the Yin Yang Cave isn’t such a simple place.”
Having passed through Heavenvoid Hall, Devilfall Valley and other such dangerous places, Han Li naturally experienced many of these dangers and he icily said, “Since Brother Fu wasn’t able to capture it after so many years, there must be some complications behind it.”
Old Man Fu confidently explained, “Correct, that is why I’ve been preparing for the past tens of years. I specifically refined several treasures to resist these ghosts. And to block to soul-scouring Yin winds, I’ve brought my sect’s Dark Violet Pearls. With this, you’ll be able to weaken the Yin winds to half of their power.”
Cultivator Yuan and Bai Yaoyi’s heart stirred when they heard this. The Dark Violet Pearl was one of the three signature treasures of the Nine Serenities Sect!
Old Man Fu slowly asked, “How about it? If you do your best to assist me and manage to capture the Umbra Yin Horse, I will immediately use it to refine the Nascent Cultivating Pill and I guarantee you each a single pill. As the pill is something that can only affect your body once, it will have the same effect no matter how many you take. For anything else you might find inside, that would be left up to chance. Even if we encounter a fearsome ghost monarch within, we’ll be able to deal with it well enough with our combined strength.”
The three were silent when they heard this. Even Cultivator Yuan, the most excited of them, wore a pensive expression.
Bai Yaoyi moved a strand of hair from her face and calmly asked, “Since Brother Fu has already made such preparations, why did you seek us out? If you wanted mid-Nascent Soul cultivators, it shouldn’t be hard to find them in your Nine Serenities Sect.”
When the other two heard this, their expressions stirred. Cultivator Yuan in particular closely stared at Old Man Fu’s face.
A fierce look appeared on the old man’s face and he angrily said, “This might be true for others but not to me. Because of grievances in the past, I’ve become hostile with most similar-grade cultivators in my sect. Apart from my Junior Martial Sister Chang, the rest are looking forward to the day I die. Even if they agreed to help, I fear they would be waiting for opportunity to betray me.”
Han Li was stunned by how empty these words were. Who could tell if they were true? However, since he’s said this, it would be difficult to further pursue the matter and they could only remain silent.
Bai Yaoyi lowered her head in thought. Then, she raised her head and said, “Given how dangerous it is to enter the Yin Yang Cave, I must properly think about it. Can you give me three days to come to a decision?”
“Of course. We won’t even begin until half a year regardless. We must first wait for the twenty-year cycle when the Yin winds are weakest in the cave, and you should also prepare treasures to deal with the ghosts beforehand. But before we depart today, I will require you all to sign this Underworld River Page with your blood essence, swearing a venomous oath that you cannot mention this to any other. I am a coward first and foremost and a gentleman later. I don’t want this matter attracting any attention down the line.” Old Man Fu smiled and with a wave of his sleeve, a piece of yellow paper appeared in a flourish of black flames.
“An Underworld River Page?” Cultivator Yuan cried out in alarm, “The wicked tool used to befall calamity on those who break their oaths. Hadn’t it disappeared several hundred years ago?”
When Han Li heard this, he felt shocked.
Old Man Fu indifferently replied, “I had to spend quite a sum in the underground market to acquire this. While it isn’t nearly as outrageous as legends swear, it can at least keep you quiet for a short time. Fellow Daoist Han might not know of the death of the Heavenly Devil Sect’s Feng Tianxing, but Fellow Daoists Bai and Yuan should know. Feng Tianxing was a mid-Nascent Soul cultivator like us and I hope that none of you would wish to test its effectiveness.”
Cultivator Yuan’s expression wavered for a long while, and then he decisively said, “Fine, I won’t let something as valuable as a Nascent Cultivating Pill pass me by. In half a year, I will arrive on schedule.” Afterwards, he summoned the flaming black page a meter in front of him with a wave of his hand. He then spat out a cloud of blood essence next to it.
He dipped his finger in the blood essence and quickly wrote a few ancient characters on the page. Shortly after, a malevolent ghost face emerged from the black flames and wickedly smiled at the large man. Then, it sucked the bloody characters on the page into its mouth before disappearing into smoke.
The strange scene caused Han Li’s heart to thump.
Old Man Fu recalled the page and examined it for a moment before revealing a satisfied expression. Then, he turned his gaze to Bai Yaoyi.
The woman shortly hesitated before resigning herself and summoned the page towards her. Following the same events, the ghost head also made a strange and abrupt appearance.
When Old Man Fu turned his sights on Han Li, he inwardly sighed. Although he felt a trace of fear towards this item, it appeared he didn’t have a choice over the matter.
He expressionlessly pointed at the page and summoned it. After staring at it, he bit the tip of his tongue and spat out a cloud of blood essence. He quickly wrote down that he swore not to divulge the details of the day’s meeting and in a flash of crimson light, the ghost face appeared once more from the black flames.
It sinisterly smiled and when it opened its mouth, but something suddenly stirred inside of Han Li and it let out a strange cry. Although the sound wasn’t loud, all the nearby cultivators could clearly hear it.
While the others didn’t react when they heard this, the ghost face suddenly warped and it let out a howl before disappearing in a panic.
Old Man Fu and the others were all dumbstruck by the sight.
Han Li wore an odd look on his face and sighed. He swept away the page and said, “There is no need for me to consider anything, and will arrive as scheduled. But it appears that there is something about me that is able to restrain this page so I am incapable of writing down an oath.
However, I am only a vagrant cultivator and won’t be departing from Nanjiang in the coming six months, nor will I tell anybody else of this matter.”
Han Li had swept back the page to Old Man Fu in a wave of azure light.
He grabbed the page, still wearing an astonished expression, and appeared to be at a loss. Apart from the Underworld River Page, he had no other method of keeping Han Li quiet on the matter.
Then, the black-clothed woman finally broke her silence, “Senior Martial Brother Fu, I feel that Fellow Daoist Han’s words are reasonable. I’ll trust him to keep quiet.”
The woman’s voice was somewhat hoarse, but it invoked an indescribable attraction. With a flutter of her bright eyes, it felt like she could bewitch someone with her beauty.
After Old Man Fu declared that he had found the whereabouts of the Umbra Yin Horse, a moment of silence passed. Cultivator Yuan then asked, “Since Fellow Daoist has already found the nest of the Umbra Yin Horse and still needs our assistance, could it be that you’ve encountered a problem?”