Chapter 1247, Sixth Layer
Yang Kai wanted to take the Artifact Spirit back into his Space Ring, but after it finally gained its freedom, it was unwilling to be restrained any more. Instead, it transformed into a miniature Firebird and stood on Yang Kai’s shoulder, using its pointed beak to comb his hair, putting on a determined display of flattery. No matter how Yang Kai tried to persuade it, it refused to return to the Artifact Refining Furnace.
Yang Kai didn’t want to waste time arguing with it so he simply let it be. He couldn’t put the Artifact Refining Furnace into his Space Ring though, otherwise, the Artifact Spirit would be forced to return to its vessel, so instead, Yang Kai stored it into his sleeve before slowly taking a look at his surroundings.
The fifth layer was still the same as it was a month ago, visible waves of heat and unbearable fire poison everywhere with dark reddish hues as far as the eye could see.
However, Yang Kai found that it was now much easier for him to resist the harsh environment here.
His strength had increased, and his cultivation had improved by a Minor Realm, but the biggest reason Yang Kai was able to resist the environment here was that his control over his Demonic Flame had grown remarkably.
More than a month ago, Yang Kai was unable to manipulate the properties of his Demonic Flame, so although it was both dense and potent, using it to resist the environment of the fifth layer was quite laborious. Today though, Yang Kai could determine whether his Demonic Flame was hot or cold, transforming it with a single thought. With the ice-cold flames protecting his body, he was no longer afraid of the fierce heatwaves and fire poison around him and was able to keep all of it at least half a metre away from himself.
Standing in place, Yang Kai pondered for a while, but after understanding what was happening, he couldn’t help feeling jubilant.
Moreover, his worries about time seemed to be unnecessary. Even after refining the Profound Yin Sunflower Water, the Flowing Flame Sand Field hadn’t closed. Calculating it though, the closing should be within a few days.
With several days of time left, Yang Kai naturally had no interest in returning to the fourth layer and instead wanted to continue deeper to see if there really was a sixth layer!
If there was, he wondered what kind of scene it would be.
If the power of his Demonic Flame hadn’t improved so dramatically, Yang Kai would definitely not try to reach the sixth layer. Before, when he came here, it had been impossible for him to continue forward, but now that he had his ice-cold flames to guard his body, Yang Kai was confident he could explore further.
No one had explored past the Flowing Flame Sand Field’s third layer barrier for tens of thousands of years, and each subsequent layer had been filled with amazing wealth and opportunities.
The Red Candle Fruit had appeared in the third layer, and the huge ancient Sect ruin had appeared in the fourth layer. Unfortunately, Yang Kai didn’t have the ability to access that Sect ruin so he could only stare at it from afar and sigh. The fifth layer had an Earth Lung Fire Pond as well as an Origin King Grade Artifact Refining Furnace that had formed an Artifact Spirit. If there really was a sixth layer, there would no doubt be some good things there.
Making up his mind, Yang Kai no longer hesitated. Time was precious now as the Flowing Flame Sand Field would soon close. Taking out his Yuan Magnetic Compass from his Space Ring, Yang Kai determined his direction before setting off.
With his cold flames protecting him, it was truly quite easy for Yang Kai to walk through the fifth layer, and the excessive consumption of Saint Qi he experienced before did not happen again.
Yang Kai also constantly used his Demon Eye of Annihilation to avoid invisible barriers and dangerous Spirit Arrays.
Along the way, Yang Kai didn’t encounter any danger at all though, and even the Artifact Spirit remained docile, only occasionally flying out for a moment before quickly returning and squatting on Yang Kai’s shoulder.
It seemed that it also knew that this place had its hazards so it didn’t dare run about freely.
For three days, Yang Kai walked through the fifth layer. If it weren’t for the Yuan Magnetic Compass though, he would have quickly become lost in this scorching world.
On this day, while Yang Kai was walking, the Artifact Spirit crouched on his shoulders suddenly stood up and let out a series of rapid cries, its two small eyes staring forward with extreme alert.
Yang Kai was surprised by this development and quickly stopped before using his Demon Eye of Annihilation to sweep the area. However, upon not discovering anything wrong, his expression couldn’t help but sink.
He knew that in the Flowing Flame Sand Field, there were some Spirit Arrays which were arranged so exquisitely that even his Demon Eye of Annihilation couldn’t see through them. Now, it seems he was in front of one such Spirit Array.
However, this Spirit Array was actually first discovered by the Artifact Spirit, which came as a surprise to Yang Kai.
This Artifact Spirit was born from an Artifact Refining Furnace, so in theory, it shouldn’t know much about barriers or Spirit Arrays, so how had it discovered something was wrong? Yang Kai turned his head and looked at it somewhat suspiciously, but the Artifact Spirit still kept tweeting, seemingly wanting to convey a warning to Yang Kai.
Yang Kai frowned, but after a moment, his expression suddenly dropped, “You mean, we’re already inside the formation?”
The Artifact Spirit no longer spoke, its silence giving Yang Kai his answer.
“That can’t be,” Yang Kai’s face changed. All along the way, he had been extremely cautious and never entered any place that seemed remotely dangerous. He only took routes that he thought were extremely safe, but if what the Artifact Spirit was saying was true, he had most likely stumbled into some kind of Spirit Array completely without knowing it.
Turning around, Yang Kai couldn’t find anything special about his surroundings. This place was like any other, an extremely harsh dark red wasteland.
There wasn’t even a dangerous aura in the air.
This might be a type of Bewildering Array or Illusion Array! Yang Kai didn’t think the Artifact Spirit would be making such a fuss for no reason, so he could only think of such a possibility, but when had he fallen into this Spirit Array?
On top of that, if even the Demon Eye of Annihilation couldn’t see any flaws in this Spirit Array, how was he supposed to escape from it?
If this was really the case, Yang Kai could only wait for the Flowing Flame Sand Field to close and allow the World Principles to teleport him out. Fortunately, that would happen within a few days, so Yang Kai wasn’t particularly worried.
While preparing to sit down cross-legged and wait out the remaining time though, the Artifact Spirit on his shoulder suddenly let out a cry and transformed into a red streak of light that shot out towards a certain direction.
Yang Kai frowned but didn’t force it to return because he was faintly aware that it had discovered something.
So he decided to wait and see.
What was strange though was the Artifact Spirit disappeared from Yang Kai’s sight after about a thousand metres; however, from time to time he could still hear its cries and, judging from them, Yang Kai knew it hadn’t gone far from his current position.
Yang Kai suddenly felt relieved.
A short time later, a fierce burst of Fire Attribute energy occurred and in the next instant, the entire world seemed to distort. After these distortions appeared, Yang Kai was able to see some flaws in this Spirit Array with his Demon Eye of Annihilation.
The Artifact Spirit hadn’t been making a fuss for no reason, they really had stepped into an Illusion Array, but as for when that happened, Yang Kai didn’t know. The various distortions around him were obviously not normal and were obviously the result of some kind of mirage.
As the Fire Attribute energy fluctuations became more and more violent, the distortions also became more obvious. The harsh surroundings began to crack and the earth and the sky took on the appearance of a broken mirror.
Not long after, with a loud cracking sound, the world around Yang Kai suddenly shattered and turned into scattered points of light.
At the same time, the harsh environment Yang Kai was standing in disappeared completely and was replaced by an extremely lush and beautiful landscape filled with rich World Energy aura.
Yang Kai couldn’t help but gawk, subconsciously thinking that this might be another Illusion Array.
But when he looked back, his brow couldn’t help furrowing.
About ten kilometres behind him there was a red light curtain beyond which a dark red scorched landscape filled with swirling fire auras lay.
That was clearly the fifth layer of the Flowing Flame Sand Field!
Thinking about it for a moment, Yang Kai suddenly had a thought.
Had he actually walked out of the fifth layer and arrived in the sixth layer?
The place where he was currently standing was the clearly the sixth layer he had hypothesized existed. Yang Kai could tell because the World Energy aura here was significantly richer than around the rolling mountains of the fourth layer’s Sect ruin.
Yang Kai didn’t know when he set foot into the sixth layer, but he surmised that the moment he did, he had been enveloped in the Illusion Array, making him believe he was still traversing the fifth layer.
The mirages around him having been dispelled indicated that the Illusion Array had been broken.
Yang Kai turned his head again and sure enough, a red flash of light was flying straight towards him. A moment later, the Artifact Spirit’s body reappeared, but now it had a fist-sized, hexagonal crystal in its mouth.
At first glance, Yang Kai realized that this crystal was a bit abnormal, because he couldn’t tell what colour it was. Saying it was completely pure and colourless seemed right, but saying that it was a brilliant purple or red also seemed appropriate, an incredibly strange phenomenon.
Just as he was preparing to probe this crystal more carefully, Yang Kai’s heart suddenly clenched tightly as he witnessed a burst of black Qi erupt from it, transform into innumerable evil spirits, and rush towards him.
Yang Kai was shocked and quickly waved his hand to condense countless balls of Demonic Flame to intercept these terrifying spirits.
Strangely though, these evil spirits, which seemed so imposing actually shattered as easily as the moonlight reflected on a pond. The moment the Demonic Flames passed through this wave of spirits, they all howled miserably and disappeared. At the same time, a series of angry chirps sounded in Yang Kai’s ear.
Yang Kai froze up and stared in front of himself only to see the Artifact Spirit still holding the strange crystal, its wings fluttering greatly as it flew about, constantly chirping as if yelling at Yang Kai.
Just now, Yang Kai suddenly attacking had startled it.
Yang Kai ignored the Firebird and instead knit his brow tightly.
He also noticed at this moment that the evil spirits from just now weren’t real. In other words, everything had been an illusion, because when that swarm had appeared, his Demon Eye of Annihilation had allowed him to perceive their true form.