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Book 6 Chapter 24 - Just Lacking the Last Breath

Immortal Devil Transformation
     Second Grandpa Zhang was in the pitch-black well.

    When he heard the rumbling water sounds behind him, watched as the light became completely dark, he knew that the six-edged well’s entrance had already been completely blocked by the fat merchant.

    The well water was ice-cold, opening his eyes in this type of frigid and deep waters extremely difficult. However, he still did his best to keep his eyes open.

    When the first rock smashed in, he already made his way into a hole at the bottom of the well.

    Right now, even the last ray of light behind him became dark, momentarily preventing him from seeing anything. He continuously groped around him, using the fastest speed possible to swim along this underground path.

    In the ice-cold well water, he felt two paths that were enough for a single person to swim through. Without any hesitation, like a fish, he made his way into the left path.

    If there was anything that could light up these waters, one would see that Second Grandpa Zhang was swimming with great difficulty, but also quickly advancing along this passage. This was a rugged underwater cave.

    This was an underwater karst cave formed naturally from the water’s corrosion, curved and winding about. In addition, apart from the place he had just passed through, there were many areas that were so narrow only a single person could move through them.

    Second Grandpa Zhang’s eyes finally adapted a bit to the darkness, able to just barely make out the shapes of the rocks in front of him. As such, the speed at which he moved through the waters became even more astonishing.

    His entire body seemed like there were no bones within, moving rhythmically from head to feet, his hands occasionally pressing forcefully against the surrounding rock. Because of his speed, there were even streaks of white currents around him, as if he was a white dragon moving in the river.

    To run fast on land, it would mostly depend on prolonged explosive strength, but in the water, apart from power, to swim faster, one needed great technique.

    Even if cultivators with double Second Grandpa Zhang’s strength saw that he had this type of speed in the water, they might feel sincere praise.

    However, Second Grandpa Zhang instead began to reveal a hint of despair and unresigned bitterness.

    The old well in East Port Town was called Hexagon Well.

    According to the tales told by some of East Port Town’s elders, the bottom of this old well led to the depths of Breath River.

    The origin of this type of saying was roughly because this old well’s water level would rise and fall along with Breath River.

    He knew that this saying was true.

    It was because when he was young, he really did swim to the bottom of this well, and then by relying on his water skills and ability to hold his breath as a cultivator, he discovered that there really was a path that could move through the underwater cave at the bottom of Breath River.

    This military cultivator thought that as long as this River Dragon King didn’t enter water, then killing him was already guaranteed. Who would have thought that in this East Port Town, there was actually this type of water path this sick dragon king could escape through.

    This was truly an example of a sage thinking through a thousand things, but in the end still overlooking something.

    However, the judgment of the fat merchant who always had an ‘amiable’ smile on his face regarding his body was extremely accurate.

    During these two years, since he always remained inside, his soul force cultivation made great progress, but because of the severity of his injuries and the permanent damage to his lungs, it was difficult for him to sleep, unable to continue any type of intense movement.

    Ten years ago, he was confident in swimming through this long and winding underground cave, reaching the river.

    However, his body now really couldn’t hold on.

    Right now, he knew that there was still a third of the path left. He was doing his best to keep his eyes open this entire time and see the path ahead clearly, sparing no effort to swim as fast as possible, but even though his eyes were opened, his line of sight became more and more blurry, the dark outlines gradually becoming warped, as if they were beasts brandishing their fangs and claws. A tearing pain could be felt from his chest, as if that area was already completely ripped apart by a sharp blade. The air he held in his chest became more and more boiling hot, as if a flame was about to explode, unable to bring his body any help, instead making his thinking become more and more blurry, his reaction speed becoming increasingly sluggish.

    He only subconsciously continued forward bit by bit, wishing to swim out of this underwater cave.

    Suddenly, his body trembled fiercely. His left hand moved towards his mouth, his right hand clutching his throat.

    The turbid clump of air in his chest was already starting to irresistibly rush out from his mouth and nose. Even though right now, his brain was already not that clear, his remaining consciousness still instinctively reminded him that if this blast of air rushed out, there was no way he could swim out of this cave.

    This breath was equivalent to his life.

    Pu!

    His hand clutched his mouth and nose, but streaks of blood still rushed out from between the caps in his fingers, merging into the pitch-black river water in front of him.

    He forcibly stopped this breath of air, but a mouthful of blood still shot out.

    His swiftly moving body stopped in the water.

    Right now, his body became completely ice-cold, wrapped around by the dark, ice-cold river water, feeling a sense of loneliness and despair… He knew that he wouldn’t be able to hold on much longer, now starting to prepare for his impending death.

    He was unwilling.

    That fat merchant prevented him from sleeping well these past few years, left him in a constant state of suffocating pain, yet he still couldn’t escape today, he was about to die under this person’s hands.

    He began to think to himself in an unresigned manner, thinking about how he was going to leave some stuff on his body so that Lin Xi would know there was this type of powerful cultivator pursuing him. However, with his corpse stuck here, when would it float to the river surface? Would Lin Xi be able to find him?

    Pu!

    A mouthful of blood sprayed out from his mouth together with the turbid breath of air he already couldn’t hold back.

    Suddenly, there seemed to be a powerful stream of water that rushed over in a strange manner.

    He struggled to open his eyes, perplexed as he saw two large black shadows arrive before him.

    These were two large fish, one in the front, one in the back, two vicious flesh-eating rock fish. They most likely came after smelling blood in the water, treating him as prey.

    His already dark eyes immediately erupted with light.

    His already hanging right hand reached out, his fingers like swords, stabbing straight into the belly of the large fish in front of him.

    A large white-colored swim bladder was torn off from the fish’s belly, and then attached to his nose.

    Following a light snort sound, his breath rushed through the side of the swim bladder, sticking to his nose. He released a bit of turbid air, making this swim bladder he pinched with one hand swell even greater, but immediately afterwards, after an inhale, this swim bladder flattened, most of the gaseous substance originally stored within sucked away.

    Only now did the large fish in the back realize this wasn’t actually prey, but it discovered that it already couldn’t move.

    Second Grandpa Zhang struck out fiercely with his free hand, the powerful vibration making this fish that already left his side immediately go rigid.

    As if he was suddenly infused with fresh vitality, he immediately arrived at this large fish’s side, removing another large white swim bladder.

    The difference between life and death, was only a single breath.

    For a cultivator like him, these two breaths of air were already enough to change his fate.

    …

    Lin Xi and Jiang Xiaoyi were lying on a hillside, gazing into the stars in the night sky.

    Since things temporarily came to the end of a phase, they still had to wait for information from the higher ups, together with Jiang Xiaoyi needing to return to Favor Ancient Town tomorrow, after these two exhausted their stamina from cultivating in the river, Lin Xi didn’t immediately carry out meditation cultivation like how he usually did, instead starting to chat with Jiang Xiaoyi.

    After changing into a set of clean clothes, lying on the meadow while gazing at the stars, chatting with a good friend, for him, was also an extremely joyous thing.

    However, a wave of rushed footsteps quickly shattered this tranquility.

    A rough looking man dressed in black silk clothes, hair bound in straw rushed over in the night in an extremely hurried manner. After showing Lin Xi who suddenly stood up a bow of respect, he quickly spoke a few things quietly at Lin Xi’s side, and then turned around to walk into the distance, waiting in the dark night.

    “What happened?”

    Jiang Xiaoyi immediately sensed that something abnormal was happening.

    In the darkness, Lin Xi’s brows already furrowed tightly.

    He seemed to be continuously pondering over something, weighing certain issues. Only after thinking for more than ten halts of time, did he raise his head, look at Jiang Xiaoyi and explain quietly, “Second Grandpa Zhang was attacked by an assassin today in East Port Town… That individual is Pu Feng, someone who handles matters for Second Grandpa Zhang. He doesn’t know exactly what kind of relationship you have with me, so just now, most likely because he doesn’t want to drag you into the waters as well, because of the urgency of the matter and then also because it wasn’t convenient for him to speak to you, he only spoke to me alone.”

    Jiang Xiaoyi’s brows immediately furrowed. “What are the current circumstances like?”

    “Second Grandpa Zhang escaped, he is currently on the river.” Lin Xi took a deep breath. He looked at the pitch-black river surface and said, “The other party has connections with the military. If I am not mistaken, he should be someone who Wei Xianwu sent over. Wei Xianwu was transferred to the border army by Li Xiping, unable to come himself, so he had this person deal with me.”

    “What is the other party’s cultivation level? Where are his current whereabouts?” Jiang Xiaoyi’s expression became serious.

    Lin Xi released a breath, finally setting his resolution. Moreover, because Zhang Longwang faced this type of danger, but still escaped, due to him truly considering this person a friend, he naturally felt that this was a happy and joyous thing, so the expression on his face relaxed a bit.

    “You can’t leave anymore. In a bit, I’ll send someone to explain the situation to Zhou Nianshan, have him help you extend your vacation by a few days.”

    He gave Jiang Xiaoyi a look, first saying this, and then with a normal chatting voice, slowly explained, “Warden Office’s fire was also started by this person… Several years ago, the one who wounded Second Grandpa Zhang was also this person, most likely because Xu Chengfeng’s group felt like having this type of cultivator on the river made things more difficult for them. Second Grandpa Zhang is a late stage Soul Expert cultivator, his cultivation level higher than both of ours. According to his deduction, the other party should have already reached Soul Master level cultivation at that time.”

    Jiang Xiaoyi took a deep breath. He looked at Lin Xi and said, “Then even if we join hands, we still won’t be his match.”

    Lin Xi knew that his friend didn’t say this because he was greedy for life. He patted Jiang Xiaoyi’s shoulder and said, “With his cultivation level, if he only wanted to kill me, he could have made his move any time during these few days. However, he instead went to set fire to the Warden Office and then went after Second Grandpa Zhang.”

    After a slight pause, with a voice only the two of them could hear, he said quietly, “When we were in Green Luan Academy, we also heard quite a bit about the analysis of enemies’ mental behaviors… By using all of these methods, this person is clearly an abnormal enemy.”

    “He wishes to watch me fall into despair step after step, to cut down the people I care about one by one, torment me like a cat chasing a mouse.”

    Lin Xi’s brows furrowed tightly, his voice also becoming a bit colder.

    Jiang Xiaoi, who was quite familiar with Lin Xi’s nature, knew that Lin Xi’s current attitude was already one of extreme anger.

    “That is why if you were to leave, there is a high chance that he will assassinate you along the way.” Lin Xi didn’t seem to want to hide his anger either. He waved his fist in the air in aggravation, saying forcefully, “I’m angry, I am really really angry.”

    Jiang Xiaoyi didn’t expect Lin Xi to be like this, so he felt like this was a bit amusing, yet found it hard to laugh right now.

    “Second Grandpa Zhang only managed to get away after jumping into a well that was connected to the river, that well is quite far from the river.” Lin Xi continued to say angrily, “That individual is definitely not stupid, so he should understand that Second Grandpa Zhang escaping through the water is a possibility. However, he understands Second Grandpa Zhang’s body and cultivation extremely well, so he should be quite conflicted right now, full of irritation, having no idea if Second Grandpa Zhang has really died or not. He will wait, see if Second Grandpa Zhang died, watch for my reaction.”

    “However, since he suspects that Second Grandpa Zhang is still alive, I feel like he won’t be able to maintain his patience for much longer. After continuous miscalculations, moreover me becoming aware of his existence, he should directly come for me. That is why we must immediately deal with him.”

    Lin Xi was fuming as he said, “Originally, I had a way that could definitely deal with Wei Xianwu, just that I wasn’t willing to use it. That is why before, I told you that I wanted to call you and Bian Linghan over. With the three of us working together, we can deal with Wei Xianwu… However, if this individual’s cultivation has already reached Soul Master level, then even with the three of us working together, we might not necessarily be able to deal with him. Together with me being truly angry, I can only use this type of method to deal with him.”

    “He will die in an extremely unpleasant manner.”