The strong-ape’s lair was located in a st.u.r.dy cave. Within the cave was an entirely different world. Numerous treasures were kept within. To survive, the strong-ape only needed to guard the entrance and prevent Xiang Shaoyun’s entry.
When Xiang Shaoyun arrived before the cave, he found that a bright formation had appeared around it. The formation kept the cave hidden and prevented Xiang Shaoyun from entering.
A look of astonishment flickered in Xiang Shaoyun’s eyes as he said, “The strong-ape is actually capable of laying down its own formation? What an amazing beast.”
He hurled his fist forward, unleas.h.i.+ng a domineering punch in his attempt to smash the formation apart. But when his fist energy struck the formation, it was dissolved into nothingness.
“How is this possible?” Xiang Shaoyun exclaimed in shock.
His punch was incredibly overbearing, but it was completely useless before the formation. Its failure completely surpa.s.sed his expectations. He punched a few more times, but the result was the same. His punches weren’t able to do anything.
But instead of getting anxious, a smile formed on his face. “There must be a secret here. Otherwise, with the strong-ape’s intelligence, he won’t be able to lay out a formation.”
He stood ramrod and unleashed his profundity of earth, sending his senses creeping all over the formation. Previously in the Holy Earth Hall, he had similarly relied on the profundity of earth to detect the weak point of their formation. He believed he could do the same here.
With his gift of instincts fully active, he searched dozens of formation eyes, seeing clearly each rune of the formation. He exclaimed, “This is a peak sovereign energy-neutralizing formation. Looks like a peak Sovereign once resided in this cave.”
Xiang Shaoyun was a well-read person, and he had naturally read books on formations before. Although he wasn’t exactly an expert at formations, he knew enough to recognize some formations. The energy-neutralizing formation before him was capable of turning all attacks into nothingness, making it almost impossible to break.
Xiang Shaoyun did not know formations well, but he could rely on his talent to see each formation rune with clarity. Thus, he could easily find a weak point that would make it much easier to break the formation. He stepped forth, sending out a pulse of wood profundity. A formation eye buried underground exploded.
The formation eye’s destruction weakened the other formation eyes, and the energy powering the formation grew disordered. Xiang Shaoyun repeated his actions, destroying dozens of formation eyes in succession. Finally, the formation dissipated and could no longer block his path.
The strong-ape, who had hidden at the depths of the cave, saw what happened. Thick indignation flickered in his eyes.
Instead of forcing his way in, Xiang Shaoyun said, “Strong-ape, I will give you an opportunity. Do one thing for me, and I’ll spare you.”
The strong-ape replied, “This sovereign will never surrender. Come fight me to the death if you dare.”
“You’re really not coming out?” asked Xiang Shaoyun with a smile.
“No. Come in if you can,” challenged the strong-ape.
“Sure. Don’t blame me for burning your cave to the ground,” said Xiang Shaoyun as he sent Yun Flame out, sweeping the cave with the flame.
The raging flame burned within the cave, raising the temperature to an uncomfortable level. The strong-ape was powerful enough, but it still suffered a great deal under the torture of Yun Flame, who was now a high-level flame. The raging flame pushed his defenses to the verge of collapse.
He repeatedly roared as he tried to extinguish the flame, but his struggles were for nothing. With the profundity of flame, Xiang Shaoyun could allow the flame to burn for an eternity. Nothing could stop his flame. Waves of flame swept forth one after another, destroying the strong-ape’s defensive barrier, forcing him to escape deeper into the cave.
When Xiang Shaoyun found that the ape was actually retreating deeper, he concluded that there definitely was something good within the cave. He opened his mouth and took a deep inhalation, pulling the flame back inside him before das.h.i.+ng into the cave’s depths.
The flame energy within the cave had reached an intense level, but Xiang Shaoyun was immune to it. His clone was actually stronger than his main body, and in any case, the flame energy here was a product of Yun Flame in the first place.
Moving at his fastest speed, Xiang Shaoyun advanced into the cave. He found that the cave was incredibly deep, and he still couldn’t see the end of it even with traveling at his speed. Suddenly, he saw the strong-ape standing still, not daring to go any deeper.
Xiang Shaoyun also stopped as he could sense an odd aura ahead of him. He narrowed his eyes and focused his vision. He found that the cave wall beside the strong-ape was decorated with a large number of high-grade spirit crystals.
The spirit crystals were not the source of his biggest shock, as in front of the strong-ape were strands of pure yellow energy floating about. There weren’t many, but they contained an incredibly dense vicious energy that made advancing an exceptionally fearful prospect.
Xiang Shaoyun also noticed that the strands of energy were not pure vicious energy as some pure earth energy was mixed within as well. He could see some similarities between the energy here with the dark origin energy he had absorbed before.
The strong-ape was extraordinarily powerful, but not even he dared to approach the vicious energy since the energy was too powerful. It could dissolve even Sovereigns, and the strong-ape would have no way of absorbing it.
“Strong-ape, submit or die,” demanded Xiang Shaoyun murderously as he knew that the strong-ape was left with no other options.
Naturally, the strong-ape was not someone to be so easily subdued. With a roar, he spun around and attacked. A ma.s.sive club had appeared in his hand. This was a weapon he had personally forged, and he was using it in his last-ditch effort to escape.
Unfortunately for him, the cave was too small, and it restricted his movements. Of course, Xiang Shaoyun was similarly restricted as well. However, he was still stronger than the strong-ape. Using his full strength, he suppressed the ape.
Eventually, the strong-ape was defeated. Blood sprayed everywhere as Xiang Shaoyun pounded him with numerous Major Slab Palms. The ape nearly crashed into a strand of vicious energy, and he was so frightened he could feel his soul leaving his body.
“I am willing to submit! I am willing to submit!” shouted the strong-ape unhesitatingly.
Xiang Shaoyun was surprised to see how much the strong-ape feared the vicious energy. He stopped attacking.
“You wouldn’t have suffered this much if you had surrendered earlier,” said Xiang Shaoyun. He pointed forward and asked, “What’s with the vicious energy here?”
“I don’t know, but I know it’s very scary. It’s more than just a regular vicious energy. I once threw some sovereign materials to it, and even they were directly reduced to nothingness,” said the strong-ape honestly.
“This is your turf, yet you know nothing?” asked Xiang Shaoyun, displeased.
The strong-ape was afraid that Xiang Shaoyun would attack again, so he hurriedly explained, “This might be the mystic earth essence energy.”