NETS - Chapter 168: Million Poisons Pulp
When the snake trio entered the Sullied Golden Fog, Lu Ping noticed their spirits lift. The fog formed a small vortex around the spirit snakes.
There was an invisible airflow, a blue essence, and a white cold mist that flowed in and out of the mouths of the three spirit snakes, as they absorbed the toxins contained within the Sullied Golden Fog.
Lu Ping knew that in order for monster cultivators to improve their innate talent, they would have to absorb similar things that were more powerful than what they owned.
Therefore, if the snake trio were absorbing the Sullied Golden Fog, it meant that the fog contained something more poisonous than the snake trio’s innate poison.
This alerted Lu Ping. The Emerald Sea Spirit Snakes’ innate poisons were already one of the most violent poisons in the world, what could be more poisonous than it?
Soon after they entered the Canyon of Sullied Gold, Dabao led Lu Ping to a thousand-year spirit herb. As Lu Ping’s divine sense picked up the spirit herb’s exact location, he also sensed the violent aura of a monster beast guarding the spirit herb.
Lu Ping did not hesitate and ordered the snake trio to rush forward.
At the same time, the monster beast, which looked like a cow and deer had copulated together, also noticed them. It let out an angry roar and charged towards them fiercely.
Every time the monster beast stomped on the ground, a strange force rippled out interfering with Lu Ping’s balance, and sending his arcane energy into a turbulent state.
The snake trio were also affected, but they remained calm and coiled their bodies together, instantly stabilizing themselves.
When the monster beast charged at them, the spirit snakes suddenly dodged to the side, while lashing out with their tails, tripping the monster beast.
The monster beast fell and rolled several feet forwards, causing the ground to quake.
The monster beast recovered from its dizziness and hurriedly got up, but not before the snake trio attacked with their tails, creating a dozen bloody lacerations on its body.
The monster beast roared in anger. It opened its big mouth and blew a gray poisonous gas towards the spirit snakes.
The three spirit snakes didn’t care about the poison gas. They directly passed through the gas and stung the monster beast’s face, neck, and thighs. The monster beast immediately collapsed to the ground with white foam overflowing at its mouth.
Dabao, who was standing on Lu Ping's shoulder, saw the monster’s horrible death after being bitten by the snakes. It looked at the three spirit snakes and shivered in fear. There were so many times that the spirit snakes coiled their bodies around Dabao while they were playing together.
And now, Dabao couldn’t help but think what would happen if one of them suddenly got too playful and decided to bite him.
Lu Ping was very satisfied with the snake trio's performance, easily defeating this Sixth Layer Blood Condensation Realm monster beast.
But sadly, he wouldn’t be able to harvest anything from the monster beast’s carcass because of the effects of the snakes’ poisons. The poison combined together and corroded its skin, softened its bones, and froze its blood.
After killing the monster beast guarding the spirit herb, Lu Ping went on to harvest the spirit herb. The spirit herb was the Meteorite Spirit Grass, a main ingredient for concocting Core Forging Realm Meteorite Spirit Pellets.
Meteorite Spirit Pellet could purify the true energy of Enlightened Masters and strengthen their cultivation foundation. Most importantly, the pellet could help Enlightened Masters with the fusion of the heaven-and-earth spirit items into their cultivation base. This made it one of the rarest Core Forging Realm pellets.
Lu Ping carefully harvested this Meteorite Spirit Grass and placed it in a separate jade box.
The spirit herbs that grew in the Sullied Golden Fog were either highly poisonous or had a strong resistance to the surrounding toxicity. No matter which category a herb fell into, the special environment in the canyon nurtured various spirit herbs that were rarely seen in the outside world.
As a result, these spirit herbs often had a much higher value than ordinary spirit herbs, and were mostly the main ingredients for concocting Core Forging Realm medicinal pellets.
During their time in the canyon, Lu Ping harvested twenty types of thousand-year spirit herbs, which added up to more than 40 herbs. On top of that, there were also a few hundred 500-year spirit herbs.
At the same time, he also collected the seeds of the matured spirit herbs as he planned to grow them in his spirit herb garden.
However, the growth of these spirit herbs was closely dependent on the highly toxic environment in the Canyon of Sullied Gold. Therefore, unless Lu Ping was able to create a similar environment, growing these spirit herbs on his own would be almost impossible.
As they traveled deeper into the canyon, the poisonous beasts they encountered became stronger. The snake trio’s combined power was only equivalent to that of an ordinary Seventh Layer Blood Condensation Realm cultivator.
The toxicity of the poison in a monster beast would grow proportional to their cultivation base. Hence, whilst the snake trio’s poisons were high quality, they weren’t as poisonous as fatal compared to the poisons of the Late Blood Condensation Realm monsters in the canyon.
Eventually, the snake trio’s poisons weren’t able to handle the poisonous beasts anymore and Lu Ping had to get involved as well.
There was a time when they discovered a 2000-year Night Watch Grass, but they were chased by a colony of Poisonous Cloud Ants guarding the spirit herb.
Fortunately, Lu Ping was prepared beforehand and had Dabao sneak underground and steal the Night Watch Grass while Lu Ping and the snake trio lured the Poisonous Cloud Ants away from the spirit herb.
But without the protection of Lu Ping’s aegis energy, Dabao was still poisoned by the Sullied Golden Fog even after taking the Anti-poison Pellet.
Luckily Dabao was only exposed to the fog for a short period of time, and so the toxicity hadn’t build-up too much. Lu Ling bit on Dabao's ear to extract the toxicity, which almost scared Dabao to death.
At this point, Lu Ping noticed that the Sullied Golden Fog’s corrosion on his aegis energy was becoming too overwhelming for him to resist. Not only that, his divine sense was heavily obstructed by the fog and limited to only a small radius around him. If he stretched his divine sense too far away, he would even feel a burning sensation as the Sullied Golden Fog corroded his divine sense.
Lu Ping held a mid-grade spirit stone in his hand and maintained a light cultivation state. This way, he could prevent his arcane energy from getting exhausted. His divine sense was also always keeping track of his surroundings.
Along the way, Lu Ping encountered the remains of several cultivators who had died inside the Canyon of Sullied Gold. But most of their interspatial pouches had decomposed as a result of the long-term corrosion from the Sullied Golden Fog, along with the items inside, which made Lu Ping quite regretful.
On this day, Lu Ping came across the remains of another cultivator. He initially didn’t take it seriously and thought it was just the same as the others he had seen on his way here.
But as he got closer to the remains, he found that the cultivator’s remains had been searched and there was fresh soil on the surface of the ground.
Lu Ping’s expression was grave. This was the first time he encountered other cultivators in the deeper region of the Canyon of Sullied Gold.
The Sullied Golden Fog here was already so thick that even with a cultivator's excellent eyesight, they wouldn’t see very far and had to rely on their divine sense to scout their surroundings.
Suddenly, a figure on guard appeared in Lu Ping's divine sense, he took a few steps forward and asked in surprise, "Is that Brother Liao Hu?"
When the cultivator in front heard Lu Ping, he suddenly let his guard down and his aura became irregular.
Lu Ping quickly dashed over and saw Liao Hu sitting on the ground cultivating.
Liao Hu hastily took out a medicinal pellet and swallowed it impatiently. His whole body surged with arcane energy, and the color of his face alternated between blue, black, and gold.
Lu Ping's expression changed when he saw Liao Hu’s state. He quickly stepped forward and slapped his palm on Liao Hu's back.
A stream of arcane energy was injected into Liao Hu's body like a stream of clear water, and combined together with Liao Hu's arcane energy, washing away the toxins that had poisoned his body.
A second later, Liao Hu opened his mouth and spurted out a stream of golden blood. After that, he thanked Lu Ping, "Thank you, Brother Lu. If not for you, my cultivation foundation would have been severely impaired, or worse, I could have been dead already."
Lu Ping looked grave, "Brother Liao, your clan often explores the deeper region of this canyon, how could you be poisoned by this fog?"
Liao Hu's eyes looked to the side and he said, "I just wanted to harvest more spirit herbs, thinking that the deeper inside, the greater and rarer the spirit herb. Who knows, I might come across a 3000-year spirit herb which can be used to concoct Avatar Realm medicinal pellets. But I didn’t expect the fog to suddenly thicken so much that it overwhelmed the efficacy of the Detoxification Pellet my clan had prepared for me. My aegis energy was corroded instantly and my arcane energy was exhausted quickly. If I hadn’t escaped fast enough, I would be dead for sure."
Lu Ping knew that Liao Hu must be hiding something, but he wasn’t interested in digging into others’ secrets. Then, Lu Ping asked, "Is the fog inside really that powerful?"
Liao Hu nodded, "Further in, even the soil has turned completely golden. The Sullied Golden Fog is so thick that it felt like walking in water. That should be reaching the core of the Canyon of Sullied Gold."
Lu Ping asked, "Brother Liao, what are your plans?"
Liao Hu looked backwards with a nervous expression, and advised, "I know Brother Lu plans to enter, but I’d advise Brother Lu not to. It is really dangerous. Even with Brother Lu's enormous arcane energy, which far exceeds that of cultivators of the same rank, it will still not be enough to support your aegis energy for too long. Although I was lucky to not die there, the toxin has invaded my body and my essence is damaged. As a result, I can't stay in the deeper region of the Canyon of Sullied Gold anymore and have to leave soon."
Lu Ping felt that Liao Hu's warning was a little too exaggerated, as if he was afraid Lu Ping would enter the core region. Lu Ping nodded, "Hearing Brother Liao’s words, I do not dare to go in anymore. If Brother Liao also couldn’t manage with a cultivation base of the Ninth Layer Blood Condensation Realm, then I certainly couldn’t with a weaker cultivation base.
"But having already made it this far, I want to make the most out of my efforts. While my arcane energy is still sufficient, I will explore more around this region to see if I can harvest a few more spirit herbs."
Liao Hu was relieved to hear that Lu Ping had given up exploring the core region and said, "In that case, I'll leave first."
Lu Ping said, "Brother Liao, be careful on your way out, it is best to find another exit. I heard that Shui Yan Pavilion’s He Li-Xin is also here in the Canyon of Sullied Gold, looking for you and the rest of your Liao Clan."
After saying goodbye to Liao Hu, Lu Ping looked towards the core region of the Canyon of Sullied Gold and muttered, "So the core region is just a bit further from here? It seems like I really have no reason to miss the Golden Nut Tree when it’s right in front of me."
The edge of the core region was really as Liao Hu had said, the black soil of the inner region and the golden soil of the core region, formed a clear dividing line.
Editor: Immortal BloodRogue