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Chapter 1015: The might of the fourth bridge
A soul cultivator. Sensing something attacking his Sea of Consciousness, Ning Cheng realised it was similar to a ghostly spirit. He also understood why the First Bridge of Coping exploded. It was because of the soul cultivator. When he entered the Bridge of Crossing Souls to rescue Ba Meng, he had not seen the soul cultivator, only the mouth, which was farther down the bridge. But also because of this, he thought that a soul cultivator wouldn’t appear on this side of the Bridge of Crossing Souls. Moreover, based on Ba Meng’s description, Ning Cheng didn’t expect that a soul cultivator would still retain such high intelligence. One had to know that it not only hid from him but even knew about seizing the opportunity to make a sneak attack.
Fortunately, the Everlasting Blue Thunder Fort in Ning Cheng’s Sea of Consciousness quickly blocked a ghostly barb just when a shadow pounced on Ning Cheng.
It didn’t involve any skill or spirit technique, just a simple action to pounce on Ning Cheng. But this ordinary action made Ning Cheng gasp for breath and lose control of his senses. The pounce itself wasn’t the source of the pressure; rather, the pressure created by the laws brought forth by this shadow shook him the most. This soul cultivator uses the laws of the netherworld.
Why would one need to control any spirit technique if one could use the laws to suppress opponents like this shadow? He would rather directly use the laws instead.
The First Bridge of Coping had exploded, while the Second Bridge of Looking Homewards had been restrained. Fortunately, his Third Bridge of Forgetfulness River hadn’t been suppressed yet.
“Third Bridge of Forgetfulness River…….” Ning Cheng immediately powered up the Third Bridge.
“The path on the bridge is far and long. When you come, you forget the river; when you leave, only ashes remain.” The grey mist-lined bridge gathered its dao rhythm and let it spread like fog from a river in the morning. Although it looked slow, the dao rhythm quickly zeroed in on the pouncing soul cultivator at the bridgehead.
The third bridge had not yet fully condensed; therefore, this soul cultivator was only trapped at the bridgehead for a moment before it started to struggle frantically.
The bridge, which had not fully solidified yet, began to shake, and the mist-like bridge slowly began to fade.
Fortunately, Ning Cheng took advantage of this moment to drive out the ghostly barb in his Sea of Consciousness. And before this soul cultivator could rush out of the bridge, he immediately powered up the Fourth Bridge of Yellow Springs.
Ning Cheng’s current Bridge of Yellow Springs was slightly more than a vague outline. But Ning Cheng realised that if he wanted to kill this soul cultivator, it might not be possible without using the fourth bridge.
After all, there was a home-ground advantage to using the Bridge of Yellow Springs in the netherworld. He could use the violent ghostly aura and the netherworld’s worldly laws to activate and power it up. Otherwise, he couldn’t have cast the Bridge of Yellow Springs, let alone used it in battle.
As the bridge quickly absorbed the laws of the netherworld, the surrounding ghostly winds immediately moved towards the bridge under Ning Cheng’s intentional drive.
In just an instant, the bridge went from a vague outline to a solid structure with a huge meandering and raging yellow river, quickly turning from fuzzy to clear. The yellow river wrapped itself around the bridge, revealing the bridge’s cyan body. Immediately following it, waves of yellow spring’s dao rhythm emerged from the bridge’s body and the yellow river.
Contrary to Ning Cheng’s expectations, he couldn’t control it even though Ning Cheng could bring out the Bridge of Yellow Springs here. After all, the laws powering this bridge didn’t come from his understanding of the laws of the spirit technique nor the Seven Bridges Realm Book. Rather, it came from the worldly laws of the netherworld.
“Boom…..” The soul cultivator finally broke free from Ning Cheng’s imperfect third bridge. But before it could recover, it got enveloped by the fourth bridge.
“The yellow springs are vast without good or evil, even the soul turns to dust, relinquishing the spirit….”
The yellow spring’s dao charm suddenly merged with the roaring yellow river wrapping the bridge, causing a massive roar to erupt. The soul cultivator, caught up in the Bridge of Yellow Springs, could no longer resist and was directly swept away by this terrifying dao rhythm, disappearing into the roaring yellow river.
Sitting paralysed on the ground, Ning Cheng looked dumbfoundedly at the still roaring and tumbling Bridge of Yellow Springs overhead with a chill in his heart.
Ning Cheng had witnessed that soul cultivator’s strength, something that even his Third Bridge of Forgetfulness River couldn’t stop. Yet, this same soul cultivator had died in a blink of an eye when the Fourth Bridge of Yellow Springs caught it.
The Bridge of Yellow Springs was this powerful? If it was just a question of power, it would have been the end of it. But the key was that Ning Cheng could no longer control it.
Moreover, after devouring a powerful soul cultivator, the cyan bridge body became clearer. Even the yellow river winding around the Bridge of Yellow Springs had grown more majestic.
The bridge’s dao rhythm and law power swirled together, sounding like a roaring flood that broke the dyke. No matter how many ghostly spirits or ghostly winds came over, all of them got sucked into the Bridge of Yellow Springs.
Ning Cheng’s heart suddenly turned cold; he lost control of his spirit technique. The Bridge of Yellow Springs before him wasn’t created by his strength but by the netherworld’s worldly laws and the endless ghostly spirits and ghostly aura of the netherworld.
Fortunately, most of the netherworld’s law pressure was being sucked away by the Bridge of Yellow Springs, greatly reducing the pressure on Ning Cheng. It allowed him to quickly take a healing pill. However, Ning Cheng understood he couldn’t let the bridge go fully out of control. The Seven Bridges Realm Book was the primary reason he could cast the Bridge of Yellow Springs in the netherworld. But once the Bridge of Yellow Springs truly went out of control, the Seven Bridges Realm Book might disappear, most likely killing him.
Thankfully, under the fourth bridge’s rolling dao charm, Ning Cheng’s bones, crushed by the laws, gradually recovered. Once he could move again, Ning Cheng carefully put away the Bridge of Coping, the Bridge of Looking Homewards and the Bridge of Forgetfulness River. He then poured all his energy and concentration into taking full control of the Bridge of Yellow Springs.
As it devoured the ghostly spirits and worldly laws, the bridge kept growing stronger and stronger while also growing more solid. Yet, Ning Cheng chose to sit down on it motionlessly. It appeared as if Ning Cheng had given up, but his spirit sense had carefully merged into the bridge, wanting to bring it back under his control.
Because of this, the netherworld’s laws started overflowing from the bridge and moving towards Ning Cheng’s body. Initially, the pressure was quite weak and bearable, but as time passed, it grew stronger and stronger.
Ning Cheng, who merged his spirit sense into the Bridge of Yellow Springs, decided to forcibly transform this law power into his body-forging strength. He thought by sharing the same source of power; he could gradually bring the bridge back under his control.
Using worldly laws to temper one’s physique, Ning Cheng was probably the only one who could do it.
Unfortunately, even as Ning Cheng’s physical strength grew stronger, he still couldn’t fully stop the rampant increase in the pressure from worldly laws as the bridge fought back, trying to resist him and cut off his connection.
“Ka……” Ning Cheng’s bones were again crushed and reassembled as his body re-advanced to the full-circle Starry Sky Physique.
But even though his body’s strength improved, the damage to his body also grew substantially. I absolutely can’t go on like this. If this continued, the pressure might just crush me into meat paste.
Ning Cheng no longer cared about having full control over the bridge and suddenly opened his eyes after recalling his spirit sense. Unfortunately, even if he didn’t want the bridge, he couldn’t escape because of the pressure.
Ning Cheng had just opened his eyes when he suddenly froze. He was no longer on the Bridge of Crossing Souls but in the middle of a grey world.
He was still on the Bridge of Yellow Springs, with a vast yellow river surrounding it. But he, the bridge, and the yellow river were slowly moving to the depths of this grey world.
Ning Cheng’s face turned pale in an instant. No wonder his body was growing stronger, all because of the increasing pressure as he moved deeper. He had left the Bridge of Crossing Souls and entered the netherworld. If not for the Bridge of Yellow Springs blocking most of the pressure, the horrifying worldly laws here would have already crushed him.
“Back off, hurry up and back off…….” Ning Cheng frantically ordered the Bridge of Yellow Springs to retreat.
However, the Bridge of Yellow Springs ignored Ning Cheng’s orders and continued to slowly move towards the depths of the netherworld as before.
Ning Cheng’s face turned blue. His spiritual consciousness rolled out wildly and grabbed the Seven Bridges Realm Book suspended on the side. Then, with one hand grabbing the book, he pressed his other hand on the outline of the Fourth Bridge of Yellow Springs and poured in his spirit sense.
The unresponsive Bridge of Yellow Springs finally showed a reaction and started slowing down before finally stopping. Although it still kept resisting Ning Cheng’s order, at least it didn’t continue to move deeper.
Ning Cheng breathed in relief; he had to use the Dark Nether Spirit Devourer to surround the bridge and prevent it from moving. Once it stopped, he immediately focussed on the bridge’s outline in the Seven Bridges Realm Book.
The Bridge of Yellow Springs had gone out of control, not because of other factors but because his cultivation level wasn’t high enough to control it. He had forcibly cast the fourth bridge, and as a result, the bridge quickly surpassed his controlling capacity with the help of the netherworld’s laws.
If Ning Cheng hadn’t taken any controlling measures, the bridge would eventually blend into the netherworld and become a permanent part of it, forever disappearing from his grasp. If that happened, the terrifying pressure of the netherworld’s worldly laws would also instantly crush him into meat paste.
Time flowed on as Ning Cheng frantically struggled for control. Eventually, Ning Cheng managed to wear away the law power pulling at the bridge, and it also slowly stopped resisting his control.
The tumbling yellow river also quietened, and the cyan bridge grew clearer but with a softer aura. It no longer showed the same frenzied rage from before.
Ning Cheng breathed in relief and let the bridge hover over his head in complete silence. A few moments later, the great yellow river wrapping around it stopped roaring and turned silent.
With this development, Ning Cheng could also block the netherworld’s law power again, and his shattered bones started to repair.
Another few moments later, his Starry Sky Physique reached grand completion, and the Bridge of Yellow Springs finished coalescing. Sensing the changes, Ning Cheng finally stood up, his heart full of joy.
Because he had cast the Fourth Bridge of Yellow Springs without knowing the consequences, he drifted into the netherworld depths. As a result, Ning Cheng almost died under the netherworld’s worldly laws.
Fortunately, he managed to recapture the Bridge of Yellow Springs with his powerful Sea of Consciousness and the Dark Netherworld Spirit Devourer, while his body once again reached the peak of Starry Sky Physique.
The Grand Essence Dragon Washing Pool lives up to its name. If not for him spending some time in the Grand Essence Dragon Washing Pool, Ning Cheng wouldn’t have been sure if he could have withstood the pressure here.
The pressure on him was still quite heavy, but he could barely keep up with the help of the Bridge of Yellow Springs.
Ning Cheng let the bridge hover above his head and began carefully retracing his steps. He didn’t dare to put away the bridge, as with his cultivation level, putting it away would mean being immediately crushed into meat paste by the Grand Essence Netherworld’s worldly laws.
As for condensing the Fifth Bridge of Afterlife, Ning Cheng only gave it a fleeting thought before giving up. The Fourth Bridge of Yellow Springs had almost gone out of control; if he were to try condensing the Fifth Bridge of Afterlife, he would only be bringing dowry for others. Even if he thought of abandoning it if things went south, his life would still end in the Grand Essence Netherworld.
As Ning Cheng tried to retrace his steps, he also estimated how much time had passed. Based on a rough guess, after entering the Bridge of Crossing Souls, almost half a month should have passed since the Bridge of Yellow Springs went out of control. Adding in the time he spent to take back control, Ning Cheng estimated that a month should have already elapsed; Ba Meng must have thought he had died in the netherworld and left. In other words, he needed to think of another way to leave the netherworld.
“Six Yin Fruits?” Ning Cheng had only walked back a few steps when he saw a fruit tree. It was just a small grey tree, around three feet tall, with three greyish-white fruits growing individually.
Ning Cheng had refined the Six Yin Soul Pill, so he naturally knew about Six Yin Fruits. Moreover, Lady Green and Qiu Yuanyi had come to the netherworld to find these fruits. Since Six Yin Fruits were Dao Essence Dao Fruits, Ning Cheng naturally wouldn’t be polite and directly took out a jade box to collect them.
“Huh…..” Ning Cheng had just put away the fruits when a man wearing a high crown suddenly appeared not far from Ning Cheng. He looked at Ning Cheng in amazement before his gaze moved towards the Bridge of Yellow Springs above Ning Cheng’s head in disbelief.
Ning Cheng’s heart turned cold, and he immediately took a few steps back as he quietly stared at this man with a high crown. He already had difficulty defending himself here, so if the other party made a move, he might die.
 The full phrase is ‘The path on the Bridge of Forgetfulness River is far and long. When you come, you forget the river; when you leave, only ashes remain’. I shortened it as the bridge’s name doesn’t flow with the phrase in English as it does in the raws.
 Since there is no accurate description of a ‘soul cultivator’, I’m assuming it’s something like a ghostly spirit but more powerful.
 The raw is vague about whether the river is ‘covering’ the bridge (as in, the bridge is ‘inside’ the river); or if it’s ‘wrapping’ (looping) around the bridge. As contextually, the character for ‘wrap/cover’ can be interpreted as both.
 The character ‘魂’ can mean ‘soul or spirit’, and the character ‘神’ also can mean ‘soul or spirit’, with a different interpretation of ‘god/deity/mysterious’ depending on where the sentence is used. This chant can vary slightly depending on where Ning Cheng uses/hears it. Alternatively, the last line can also be translated as ‘even the soul turns to dust, and the god/divinity is lost.’
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