Chapter 194 - Stumbling into the Dong Clan

    Within the period it took for half an incense to burn, Qin Nan had defeated a total of two hundred and thirty six Ice-armored Ancient Insects, while the remaining managed to flee from him.

    "Phew, what an awesome battle!"

    Despite Qin Nan's body being extremely exhausted, his emotions still remained high-spirited.

    Since Qin Nan had obtained the Divine Battle Spirit, it imperceptibly influenced him, causing him to have a stronger Battle Intent than anyone else.

    However, Qin Nan did not have many chances to experience battles, and most of them did not last a prolonged period, hence he felt incredibly awesome after this battle.

    "I should collect the Beast Cores first!"

    Qin Nan swiftly calmed himself down and focused on looting the Beast Cores.

    The final outcome was kind of unacceptable. Since it was his first time using the Fire Accumulating Saber Art, he could not control his strength with precision, hence resulting in most of the Beast Cores being burned to ashes straight away together with the corpses of the Ice-armored Ancient Insects.

    He only managed to collect forty Beast Cores from the battle.

    "Forty Core Beasts is equivalent to four hundred thousand Xiantian Pills, which could be exchanged into four thousand Martial Emperor Pills!"

    Qin Nan stored the Beast Cores in his storage bag and spent some time comforting himself. He then sat with his legs crossed without any hesitation and started meditating to heal his wounds

    After three hours, Qin Nan's Qi had fully recovered, but the wounds on his flesh were unable to be healed without the support of rare medicines, as he could still faintly feel the pain from many of the wounds.

    "I can now exert seventy percent of my strength, which is equivalent to a strength of the fifth-layer Xiantian Realm. It is more than enough to advance forward in the Longhu Mountain Range."

    Without wasting any time, Qin Nan swiftly stood up and opened the second map.

    His priority now was to finish completing the missions given by Princess Miao Miao, so he could then focus on killing beasts and training himself to pay his debts.

    The second map recorded the location of the Nine Variations Flower, which was just less than ten miles away from where Qin Nan was.

    "Let's go!"

    With a flick, Qin Nan's figure vanished into the woods.

    After the period it took for half an incense to burn, Qin Nan arrived on top of a huge boulder with a stern look on his face.

    Before him stood a jungle of weird-looking trees, which had an extremely thick pitch-black trunk, and branches filled with densely packed leaves, blocking the sunlight from above, giving it a gloomy feeling, as if there was a ghost hiding deep inside.

    "Strange, this is too strange!"

    Qin Nan said to himself, as his figure remained stationary in place.

    When he arrived here following the markings on the map, he immediately unleashed his Eyes of the Divine Battle Spirit, but not a single beast, nor a stalk of a rare plant could be seen inside this pitch-black woods, not to mention the presence of the Nine Variations Flower. It was very quiet-quiet in an ominous way.

    Hence, he did not dare to enter the woods straight away.

    "There is definitely nothing wrong with the map given by Princess Miao Miao. Only two possibilities are applicable to the situation. Firstly, the Nine Variations Flower was already taken by someone else. Secondly,  there might be an unknown secret lying within this pitch-black jungle..." Qin Nan analyzed the situation and said, "If I can't get my hands on the Nine Variations Flower, Princess Miao Miao would surely blame me for it. Therefore, I should hide here and wait patiently. If I can't see anything else in the next two days, I doubt she would still blame me."

    Qin Nan made up his mind and withdrew his aura, before hiding in a concealed spot and remaining motionless.

    Time passed swiftly, and within the two hours past, nothing worth mentioning happened inside the Pitch-Black Jungle; it was quiet as usual in an eerie way.

    "Doing two things at once!"

    It went without saying that Qin Nan had no intention of wasting his time, as he observed his surroundings and his thoughts entered the state of a Martial Addict, as he continued to deduce Martial Skills to retrieve their secrets.

    A day was gone in the blink of an eye.

    Meanwhile, Qin Nan's body was covered in a layer of hoarfrost and few pieces of dried leaves. His eyes wore a blank expression, as if he had lost his breath. If it weren't for his faint aura, there would be no difference between him and a statue.

    However, he did not learn anything new after a day was spent. He then decided to immerse himself in the world of Martial Skills, entering into a state of selflessness.

    Suddenly, Qin Nan's Eyes of the Divine Battle Spirit captured a slight, strange movement. His eyes glistened, pulling him back to reality from the arcane state.

    "What's going on?"

    Qin Nan collected his thoughts and instinctively glanced toward the movement.

    In the midst of the pitch-black jungle, an unremarkable branch began to wriggle on the ground as if it was alive, producing a faint shuffling sound.

    "A branch?"

    Qin Nan was startled, before inspecting it carefully with all his focus. A hint of astonishment immediately appeared on his face.

    It's not a branch of an ancient tree. It was a disguise for the Nine Variations Flower!

    "Damn, I actually forgot this. The Nine Variations Flower, just like its name, possessed nine different variations, and could switch between them freely. Ordinary people would have a hard time identifying it, even with hidden techniques which utilized the eyes, it was still extremely difficult to find the secrets to the transformations of the Nine Variations Flower. Qin Nan shook his head as his gaze was locked onto the moving branch on the ground. He was not in a rush to retrieve the flower, but glanced at his surroundings.

    As Qin Nan expected, in less than three breaths' time, A blasting screech was heard from the sky, as a huge demonic bird flew past him, resulting in a sudden gust of wind.

    The demonic bird was around six feet long, covered in pitch-black feathers, as if it was wearing a layer of Mystical Armor, which sparkled under the sunlight.

    "Tsk, tsk, a Black-feathered Bird, an Intermediate Marshal Beast with a strength of the sixth-layer Xiantian Realm! As expected of the Nine Variations Flower, even its Guardian Beast was this powerful."

    Qin Nan exclaimed in his heart.

    He had not been in rush to engage as he had learned of the existence of Guardian Beasts when he went to retrieve the Stone of the Abyss from before.

    If the Guardian Beast protecting the Nine Variations Flower had turned out to be an Advanced Marshal Beast equivalent to the tenth-layer Xiantian Realm, if he were to rush forward directly, wouldn't it have been wasting his time and achievements?

    "This Black-feathered Bird possesses the same cultivation as mine. Although it is mismatched against my strength, it can soar across the sky at a crazy speed, resulting in it having a faster speed. Therefore, I have to find the best timing to strike at the Nine Variations Flower. If not, the beast will flee with the Nine Variations Flower, and since I can't fly, there is no way of stopping it!"

    Qin Nan calmed his breathing, as his eyes were tightly locked onto the moving ancient branch.

    After the appearance of the Black-feathered Bird, the Nine Variations Flower halted its actions as a dazzling light was emitted from the ancient branch, lighting up the pitch-black jungle.

    In the midst of the light, a strange-looking flower could be seen rising from the ground, and two soft tentacles could be seen below the stem of the flower, which supported the Nine Variations Flower to walk like a human.

    "Now is the time!"

    Qin Nan rose up emitting a bursting aura as he entered his strongest state while preparing himself to capture the Nine Variations Flower.

    However, at that instant, not far from the woods, a sharp, high-spirited voice could be heard, "Look, look, the Pitch-black Woods is right ahead! I'm telling you that the Nine Variations Flower is somewhere in the woods!"
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