Chapter 0846

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Translated By – DemonKiller
Checked and Edited By – Livewidsmile
Proofread By – DemonKiller

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Chapter 0846: Dao Confirming’s Three Steps

“When we reached this place, we immediately removed some of the teleportation array’s components. However, we couldn’t put it back together. Even when we forced those components into place, we couldn’t activate the teleportation array.” Nalan Ruxue spoke with a low voice.

Ning Cheng shook his head in secret. The grade of that teleportation array was just outrageous. Without that heaven-defying array pattern, even he couldn’t have activated the teleportation array under Thorn Tooth Lake. Moreover, even after he used the array pattern, the one-way activation of the teleportation array wasn’t a perfect one. It was also the main reason why he barely survived the teleportation. Replaced by anyone else, those infinite spacial transformations would have ripped their bodies apart.

But now he understood that it most likely happened because Yan Ji had removed some of the components of the teleportation array. Not to mention that Nalan Ruxue and Yan Ji couldn’t reinstall it. Even with his proficiency in array formations, Ning Cheng would have also found it next to impossible to install them right away. Dismantling those components most likely broke the Laws of Space links binding the teleportation array. As long as one’s proficiency in the Dao of Arrays hasn’t reached a prerequisite level, re-integration of those components would remain an impossible endeavour.

It would remain non-functional unless the components that Yan Ji removed had no relation to the Laws of Space links. However, such a scenario wasn’t possible at all. If the parts that Yan Ji removed had nothing to do with the Laws of Space links, then she and Nalan Ruxue would have teleported away from here a long time ago.

“We realised that we couldn’t restore the teleportation array. Understanding that, Senior Apprentice Sister Yan Ji speculated that our attainments in the Dao of Arrays were just too bad. We tried to push ourselves to learn the Dao of Arrays, but how could it be easy to learn the Dao of Arrays? Moreover, high-grade teleportation arrays also involved understanding the Laws of Space. Therefore, to comprehend these high-grade laws, Senior Apprentice Sister Yan Ji decided to go to the Grand Essence Ruins. We heard that one could find countless law-related spirit techniques and treasures within Grand Essence Ruins, and it’s also the best place for cultivating around here.” Nalan Ruxue sighed.

“Then, why didn’t you go?” Ning Cheng, hearing Yan Ji’s reasoning for going to the Grand Essence Ruins, understood that it was still in line with her stubborn character. Yan Ji truly had a determined heart and tenacious personality. But people like her usually relied on themselves for everything and didn’t like asking for help.

Nalan Ruxue lowered her head, “It takes nearly 100,000 spirit crystals to reach the Grand Essence Ruins. Yan Ji and I had to venture through the surrounding areas for many years before we barely managed to save 200,000 spirit crystals. It was only because of a lucky encounter where we obtained a high-level[1] divine grass[2], the Asura Heavenly Ginseng. It fetched a high price on the market….”

Ning Cheng finally understood. From the looks of it, Yan Ji and Nalan Ruxue jointly gathered the travel expenses to let Yan Ji go to the Grand Essence Ruins. But he asked with some doubts, “I observed the people waiting on the public square for the airships that would take them to Grand Essence Ruins. But it seems that they only had to pay 10,000 high-grade spirit crystals.”

Nalan Ruxue shook her head and said, “Those airships won’t take you to the Grand Essence Ruins, but to a location with many teleportation arrays. The cultivators who get off the airships would have to use the teleportation array to reach the Grand Essence Ruins. They can also teleport to other places. For reaching the Grand Essence Ruins, it would require somewhere around 80,000 high-rank spirit crystals. Without enough spirit crystals, you’ll neither be able to move forward or backwards from that place.”

After a slight pause, Nalan Ruxue continued, “My cultivation is a little lower, not yet reaching Heaven Seated Realm. Therefore, I decided to stay here, as it’s a little safer. I usually team up with some people to look for some resources near the Boundary Essence Spirit Sea City. But the speed of collecting spirit crystals is just too slow.”

“Half a month ago, when my teammates and I hunted for sea demons, Senior Apprentice Brother Tao’s group of three passed by and helped us once. After returning to Boundary Essence Spirit Sea City, Senior Apprentice Brother Tao Xing and the others invited me to join their team. They explained that they usually explored areas farther away in the sea and that it would also translate into a larger share. So, I agreed. We were about to head into the sea in a few days when I met you today.”

When Ning Cheng heard about all this, he understood that Nalan Ruxue had truly changed a lot. Before this change, even if someone tried to help her, she would have only thanked them at best but would never agree to team up with others.

Seeing Ning Cheng show a slight frown, and not speaking for a long time, Nalan Ruxue called out with some uneasiness, “Senior Apprentice Brother Ning….”

“Yeah.” Ning Cheng thought about it for a while before asking, “Nalan, you only have Heaven’s Mandate cultivation, so why do you want to team up with three Heaven Seated experts?”

Hearing Ning Cheng call out to her by her surname Nalan, Nalan Ruxue felt a little sad. But after listening to Ning Cheng’s words, she suddenly raised her head and asked in confusion. “Senior Apprentice Brother Tao Xing and others have Heaven’s Mandate cultivation, why do you say that they are in the Heaven Seated Realm?”

Were they all in Heaven’s Mandate Realm? Ning Cheng froze for a moment before realising something. He was an Eternal-level expert, which meant that Tao Xing’s trio naturally couldn’t hide their cultivation from his eyes. But Nalan Ruxue had Heaven’s Mandate cultivation. With those three having cultivation much higher than her, in Heaven Seated Realm, it was just too simple to hide it from her.

It was just like how Tao Xing’s trio couldn’t see his cultivation at all, which was the truth.

Ning Cheng said, “I’m not wrong. Tao Xing, You Cheng, and Li Siyan all have Heaven Seated cultivation. Anyone can kill you in an instant.”

Nalan Ruxue’s expressions changed drastically. It took some time for her to return to senses before she bowed to Ning Cheng and said, “Many thanks, Senior Apprentice Brother Ning. I now understand what’s going on.”

As a team of three Heaven Seated cultivators, why would they try to team up with her, who was just a cultivator in Heaven’s Mandate Realm? When a team goes out to hunt for treasures, it’s usually a dangerous affair. Therefore, people would usually seek out individuals of similar strength to create their teams. Nalan Ruxue was only a cultivator in Heaven’s Mandate Realm. Teaming up with three other Heaven Seated cultivators, what help could she provide them? Since she couldn’t help her teammates, it meant that they had brought her on-board for a different reason.

“Nalan…..” Ning Cheng noticed the lonely look on Nalan Ruxue’s face and wanted to comfort her a bit.

But Nalan Ruxue suddenly interrupted Ning Cheng’s words, “Senior Apprentice Brother Ning, Nalan sounds a bit awkward, just call me Ruxue. I was born in a big sect and grew up in it. But despite having outstanding qualifications, I developed an arrogant personality and looked down on everyone. But all these years of fighting and struggling on the outside made me understand the bitter truth. Senior Apprentice Brother Ning looks down on me, I understand it too…..”

“Junior Apprentice Sister Ruxue, do you still have the components you took from the teleportation array?” Ning Cheng could see that Nalan Ruxue had started to venture into an aggrieved and self-loathing state and quickly changed the topic. He truly didn’t look down on Nalan Ruxue. It’s just that he didn’t want to be friends with people like Nalan.

If he didn’t happen to have a talisman back then, Nalan Ruxue’s master would have already killed him. Even when he got stuck in Law’s Way, Nalan Ruxue still used him behind his back. Even if Ning Cheng no longer cared about such things, he didn’t want to have too much involvement with people like Nalan Ruxue.

If Nalan Ruxue’s temperament hadn’t significantly changed from before, then even if Ning Cheng wanted to know about Yan Ji’s whereabouts, he wouldn’t want to talk to her.

“Yes.” Nalan Ruxue quickly took out a storage bag and handed it to Ning Cheng. “It also has a jade strip with directions leading to the teleportation array.”

Ning Cheng’s spiritual consciousness fell on the storage bag. As an Array Dao Master, he quickly understood with a sweep of his spiritual consciousness that the components inside the storage bag were truly the main parts of the teleportation array. Moreover, after experiencing the array in Thorn Tooth Lake, Ning Cheng understood that without the help of that high-grade array pattern, he couldn’t restore this side’s array with these things.

Seeing Ning Cheng wishing to return these things to her, Nalan Ruxue quickly spoke up, “Senior Apprentice Brother Ning. It would be better to keep those components with you. I’m not familiar with array formations anyway.”

“Okay.” Ning Cheng didn’t refuse. With these things on him, it would simplify things a lot when he wants to return in the future. He couldn’t re-integrate these teleportation array components right now, but that didn’t mean that he couldn’t install them in the future.

Seeing Ning Cheng put away the components of the teleportation array, Nalan Ruxue’s mood immediately improved by a bit. “Senior Apprentice Brother Ning, Tao Xing and the others want us to go to Scarlet Branch Island. Why don’t we find an excuse to not go with them?”

“Does this Scarlet Branch Island truly have Wood Origin Crystals?” Ning Cheng asked.

Nalan Ruxue nodded, “Many people already know about it. However, only a very few cultivators have managed to find Wood Origin Crystals in Scarlet Branch Island.”

“Then, why wouldn’t we go?” Ning Cheng spoke with certainty. As long as that place had even a single Wood Origin Crystal, he would naturally make a trip to that place. As for those three Heaven Seated cultivators, they were just ants in his eyes.

“Ah….” Nalan Ruxue looked at Ning Cheng suspiciously. Knowing that Tao Xing’s trio were all Heaven Seated experts, why would he still want to team up with them? Did Ning Cheng also advance to the Heaven Seated Realm? But it’s not like it’s an impossible matter either. Ning Cheng’s talent in cultivation didn’t lose out to Yan Ji, and since Yan Ji had reached Heaven Seated Realm why couldn’t Ning Cheng not reach Heaven Seated Realm?

Ning Cheng didn’t explain the reason but instead asked. “Junior Apprentice Sister Ruxue, I already know that the Grand Essence Realm is a higher grade positional plane than our four grand starry skies. Do you know what the highest level of cultivation is in this place?”

After asking, Ning Cheng looked at Nalan Ruxue with a slightly manic look. After seeing that red-haired powerhouse in the Grand Essence Sea, he understood that his strength wasn’t worth much in this place. But he still wanted to know where he stood.

Nalan Ruxue spoke with some caution, “Previously, I used to think that reaching the full-circle of Eternal Realm was the peak. But after coming here, I understood that even reaching the full-circle of the Eternal Realm didn’t mean anything, not even opening the door to true cultivation.”

Ning Cheng had already prepared himself for it, but after hearing this, he still felt a bit depressed. He had cultivated till now, yet he still hadn’t even opened the door of cultivation.

Nalan Ruxue took a deep breath, “I heard that in the Grand Essence Realm, only cultivators who reached the Dao Confirming Realm could barely count as powerhouses.”

“Dao Confirming? Is it a Dao Sculpting Powerhouse?” Ning Cheng asked with a quiet voice.

Nalan Ruxue shook her head, “No. Dao Sculpting just means that you just entered the first step of Dao Confirming Realm. I heard that Dao Confirming had three steps.”

“What three steps?” Ning Cheng asked with an eager tone.

Standing opposite to him, Nalan Ruxue could feel Ning Cheng’s eagerness. It felt as if she had become invisible, yet the most important thing to him. When she had learned about the Dao Confirming’s three steps, she wasn’t this eager to know about it, was she?

“The first step of Dao Confirming consists of Dao Sculpting, Dao Raising and Dao Transformation….”

Before Nalan Ruxue finished speaking, Ning Cheng interrupted her again, “So, Dao Sculpting is just the initial level in the first step of Dao Confirming?”

Nalan Ruxue made an ‘en’ sound, “Yes, a Dao Raising expert had once visited Boundary Essence Spirit Sea City, and I managed to get a look from a distance.”

“What about the second step?” When Ning Cheng heard about Dao Confirming’s three steps, he felt even more excited in his heart. He had the Mysterious Yellow Bead. But even without it, he believed that one day, he would reach the peak of the third step.

“I heard that only after transforming your dao into essence can you successfully move onto the second step. The second step of Dao Confirming consists of Dao Essence, Dao Fusion and Dao Perfection…..”

Upon hearing this, Ning Cheng suddenly recalled what he had heard in that store before. Something about a Dao Perfection powerhouse who went to the Grand Essence Ruins. If even a Dao Perfection powerhouse was only the second step, just how strong was the third step?

Seeing Ning Cheng’s intense gaze, Nalan Ruxue’s heart trembled, and she quickly sobered up. She understood that Ning Cheng’s look wasn’t for her, but for the third step of Dao Confirming Realm.

[1] Grade Progression: Grade 1-9 Spiritual Grasses, Grade 1-9 Starry Sky Spirit Grasses, Divine Grasses. Not clear about the sub-classification for divine grasses, so leaving it as it is in the raws.

[2] I usually translated ‘灵草’ as ‘Spiritual Grass’ depending on the location (Spiritual Grasses for those found in ‘mainlands’ and Starry Sky Spiritual Grasses for those found in the starry skies). But the word here is ‘神灵草’, which would translate to ‘Spirit/Divine Spiritual Grass’ according to the way I translate, which feels a bit off. So, I decided to shorten the word ‘神灵草’ to ‘divine grass’.

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