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As the sealing power erupted out, the world projection became like a dome, both enveloping Gongsun Wan’er, and rapidly shrinking down around her.
As could be imagined, once it shrank down enough, Gongsun Wan’er would become a slave of the Celestial!
Strangely, Gongsun Wan’er didn’t seem surprised at all by what was happening. Eyes shining with strange light, she said, “You've been preparing for quite some time, haven’t you, Daoist Heavenspan, you bastard. You were waiting until the moment I began to consume my primary form?
“But did you really think I wouldn’t be ready for something like this…? You’re a real joke, you know that? Remember… the reason for your defeat is that you don’t truly understand the world you exist in, and also… because you have no idea how powerful the bone galleon really is!!” Shrill laughter rang out from Gongsun Wan’er’s lips as the bone galleon beneath the feet of Bai Xiaochun and the other cultivators suddenly trembled.
Black light began to spill out from every bone that made up the galleon, which swirled and formed together into a beam that shot toward the eight trigrams mirrors above the cabin door.
“I didn’t need to even prepare for this moment, Daoist Heavenspan, you bastard. Back when we were fighting the gravekeeper, you didn’t dare to try to seal me, but now… you feel confident. Unfortunately, you had no idea that… all I needed was this very bone galleon! I am Ghostmother’s severed left arm, and that left arm… controls the sealing magic contained within this battleship! The truth is that I’ve also been waiting… for you to attack me!
“Devil-Conquering Mirror! I summon thee!”
More laughter erupted from Gongsun Wan’er as the black light from the ship was sucked into the eight trigrams mirror. Then the mirror began to vibrate, after which it shot into the air, a streak of black light that headed directly toward the Celestial.
A grim expression overtook the Celestial’s face as he waved his right hand out in front of him. Heaven and earth trembled, and yet, the intense black light did not shatter. However, it was shoved backward, whereupon it formed together into an enormous figure!
It was a hulking warrior clad in black armor, with green, flaming eyes. Based on the fluctuations rolling off of him, this figure did not originate in the Heavenspan Realm.
After forming, the warrior immediately closed in on the Celestial again.
“Power. Energy. Harmony. Healing…” After uttering these words, the black-armored warrior’s energy began to rise rapidly. At the same time, he shot toward the world projection sealing mark.
Energy radiated out that could end the heavens and crush the earth as, to the shock of Bai Xiaochun and all the onlookers, the world’s sealing power began to weaken!
An extremely unsightly expression appeared on the Celestial’s face. Although he had known all along that, while he was plotting against Gongsun Wan’er, she would likely be plotting against him, he had never imagined that her plan would be to use the bone galleon itself against him!
If he hadn’t been so badly injured back in the Wildlands, he would have had many tools at his disposal to deal with the situation. But his cultivation base was currently unstable, and his battle prowess significantly weakened. As such, his rage continued to build.
“Well, even still, it doesn’t matter… It’s not like I only have one trick up my sleeve!” Eyes flashing, he waved his right index finger… which flew off of his hand and rapidly transformed into an enormous boulder!
It was dark violet, and other than being one of the Celestial’s actual fingers, didn’t seem extraordinary in any way. However, it did emanate an aura that led everyone who sensed it to gasp!
It was an aura that seemed capable of crushing all types of fiends and devils!
It immediately flew up to the world projection seal, fusing into it to bolster its power. Then, the incredible sealing power shot toward the black-armored warrior, who was incapable of standing up to it, and was forced backward across the field of battle.
“Heavenly devil stone!” Gongsun Wan’er blurted, her face falling dramatically. “Dammit! Even outside of this world, heavenly devil stones are rare! How did you get one?!?!”
Even where she came from, heavenly devil stones were objects not often seen, and using them required a massive wastage of resources.
Using such an object on one’s own people was useless. But using it on cultivators from other worlds was especially effective, and could easily suppress them!
It was a moment of profound crisis, forcing Gongsun Wan’er to abandon her attempts to consume Ghostmother. Howling, she performed an incantation gesture with her right hand and then waved her finger through the air to summon the ancient sword of Gu Tianjun, which came from beyond the heavens. Grabbing it in her hand, she slashed it at the incoming sealing mark!
At the same time, the black-armored warrior erupted into flames, and his green, fiery eyes burned hotter than ever.
“Intuition. Awareness. Dimension. Creation. Absolute!!” The black-armored figure’s aura erupted with insane power, causing cracks to spread out all over it. As that happened, energy from outside of the world began to spill out of him.
Apparently, it was actually burning itself up to acquire an explosive burst of power to use in a deadly attack!
As the warrior began to grow blurry, his energy rose up into the sky, where a huge vortex formed. Through that vortex, it was possible to see what could only be the world beyond this heaven and earth. By destroying itself, the black-armored warrior was able to draw upon magical law that did not conform to the Heavenspan Realm!
If that magical law arrived and collided with the magical and natural laws of the Heavenspan Realm, even for the slightest moment… the resulting detonation could very likely be enough to break the world projection seal!
The scene playing out for Bai Xiaochun and the others on the battleship was almost too much to take in. In one moment, the Celestial and Gongsun Wan’er had been working together, only to have the situation suddenly reversed.
Ghostmother seemed too weak to do anything, whereas Gongsun Wan’er, who was Ghostmother's left arm, and could control the sealing power of the bone galleon, was going to the lengths of destroying the treasure that was the eight trigrams mirror. By combining the power from beyond the heavens with the sword she held in her hand, she was preparing to break the sealing mark that continued to descend onto her.
As for the Celestial, despite having been so badly wounded in the Wildlands, he had come to this conflict fully prepared. Not only had he unleashed the sealing mark that was the world projection, but he also had a heavenly devil stone. Both of those were weapons specifically targeting Gongsun Wan’er, and were things that he was confident she couldn’t evade while in the middle of consuming Ghostmother.
At the moment, it was impossible to say who had the advantage. As the black-armored warrior collapsed to pieces, and the natural and magical laws from the outside world descended, Gongsun Wan’er drew them into her sword and prepared to slash at the sealing mark…
Which was when everything suddenly changed!!
A scornful smile spread out on the Celestial’s face as he coolly said, “Considering how long that sword has been in my world, did you really think… that you could control it so easily? I just let you think you could!”
His eyes suddenly shone with bright light, light that seemed to perfectly match the light shining off of the sword! Then, he extended his left hand and waved his finger at the sword!
Gongsun Wan’er’s face flickered, but before she could actually do anything in response, she lost control of the sword! The point suddenly swiveled and flew, not toward her, but toward the huge vortex up in the sky!
Bai Xiaochun’s eyes were wide as saucers. The moment was so tense that he forgot to breathe. The twists and turns in this battle were almost too much for him to process. Everyone had so many plots and schemes going that it was hard to understand it all. It was especially shocking that the Celestial had actually secretly gained control of the fallen sword years ago, but left it there and allowed Gongsun Wan’er to awaken and fuse with it…
Bai Xiaochun shivered at how adept the Celestial was at hatching complex plots. It was really terrifying!
“Just how many years has he been planning all of this? Don’t tell me he knew that Gongsun Wan’er would wake up from the very beginning?”
“No!!” Gongsun Wan’er screamed despairingly. The sword moved with incredible speed, like an arrow shooting up to pierce the sky. And as soon as it reached the vortex, it exploded!
Terrifying destructive power erupted out, completely wiping out the magical and natural laws that were descending from beyond!
Although the vortex seemed unwilling, it began to fade away. The black-armored warrior’s eyes began to turn dark, and with a sigh, it collapsed into pieces!
Yet again, a shocking reversal had taken place. The Celestial had perfectly countered every one of Gongsun Wan’er’s moves. And now, the world projection sealing mark began to shrink down over her once again!
“You will become my Dharma slave, who I will use to pilot this battleship… I will draw upon the magical and natural laws of the outside world to open the gate, and leave this place! There is a new Hell-Emperor now, and he isn’t strong enough to get in my way. As for the gravekeeper, he grows weaker every day. Who can possibly stop me!?!?” The excitement was clear in the Celestial’s voice. As the sealing mark shrank down and down, it seemed obvious… that victory was at hand!
A profound, mysterious voice suddenly rang out in Gongsun Wan’er’s mind!
“You have a choice to make now, left arm of mine. Become the Dharma slave of Daoist Heavenspan. Or… come back to me, and allow me… to take you home!”
1. The nine words spoken by the black-armored figure are nine “magical words” that come from ancient Daoism. Later they were appropriated by the Japanese, where they came to be associated heavily with ninjitsu. They also have special associated hand signs (incantation gestures) that you can see here. The Chinese version is not very well documented in English from what I could find, but you can search for the Japanese version by googling kuji-kiri
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