Bai Zao landed on the snowy ground at the cave entrance.
The sword rope landed beside her afterwards, returning to its sword shape, looking as red as blood.
She ignored the attack of the cold air and crawled to the cliff's edge to look down, and all she could see was the wind and snow; Jing Jiu had already disappeared in the center of the dark whirlpool.
Her eyes displayed a hint of determination. After she took a magic pill, Bai Zao called out the South-Screen Bell by employing her Spiritual Awareness, picking up the sword in the snow as she turned and entered the cave.
The South-Screen Bell illuminated the path ahead, hurling the wind toward the cave walls and knocking down the icy frost on them.
Soon, Bai Zao saw a snow worm.
That snow worm was about fifteen feet long, and in a formidable high state, but it was dead and lifeless at that moment.
Bai Zao walked to the side of the snow worm, and she saw Luo Huainan through the semi-transparent skin inside its stomach.
It was actually Luo Huainan who was in the snow worm's stomach. His face looked pale, his upper body naked and both eyes closed; he was soaked in the sticky fluids inside the snow worm's stomach, and the bamboo board tied to the pinkie of his right hand was emitting a faint light that looked like it was to extinguish at any time.
It seemed that he had been swallowed by this high-state snow storm during an intense battle, and Luo Huainan had wounded his opponent very badly.
The snow worm came here by passing through the smooth cave, bringing Luo Huainan with it to this cold world.
The snow worm was injured too much to survive, so it died quietly after having arrived here.
Even though Luo Huainan was injured severely and couldn't come out, he relied on his strong Cultivation state to stay alive in the snow worm's stomach.
It was fortunate that he was wrapped in the sticky fluids in the snow worm's stomach; otherwise, he would have frozen to death a long time ago.
Bai Zao took another magic pill and bombarded the snow worm with the South-Screen Bell.
The sand grains in the rocky cave flew in all directions like the sharp arrows, and the ground settled down after quaking for a while.
Yet, the skin of the snow worm had only a den in it, with a few spots of white fluid coming out; it showed no sign of breaking apart.
She believed that if she kept on bombarding it with the South-Screen Bell, this dead snow worm would break up after a while, but she wasn't sure if Luo Huainan could last that long.
More importantly, she had no idea how long she could withstand the cold herself.
Her sight fell on the sword in her hand.
It was the blood-like sword.
This was the Thoughtless Sword, if she wasn't mistaken.
Without hesitation, Bai Zao raised the sword in her hands and thrust it toward the snow worm.
The sword tip broke through the hard skin of the snow worm with a faint noise, and a small portion of the sword was buried in the snow worm's body.
The cold wind came in the cave from the outside with a whistling sound.
The South-Screen Bell flew up against the wind and hit the cliff wall. Many rocks fell down and blocked most part of the cave entrance, slowing down the advance of the attacking cold wind.
Bai Zao recited the Collected Hidden Script which she hadn't quite mastered yet, and she focused all of her zhenyuan on the sword in her hands while trying her best to resist the cold air, at the risk of damaging her Dao Heart.
The hard skin of the snow worm had been cut open by the sharp sword blade, and fluid flowed out like from a volcano.
The fluid in the snow worm was as gluey as honey, and it landed on her body with great force at a high speed.
Bai Zao was knocked down by the sticky fluid.
Luo Huainan's body had landed on the ground along with the sticky fluid, his face pale; he wasn't breathing.
Bai Zao helped him up, transferring her zhenyuan into his body with both of her hands pushing against his back.
The time went by slowly.
It was fortunate that the most part of Luo Huainan's body had been wrapped in the snow worm's fluid, so his zhenyuan could still operate without being frozen by the cold air sent in the cave by the wind.
After a long while, Luo Huainan opened his eyes laboriously after throwing up a mouthful of fresh blood mixed with the worm fluid.
Feeling the quiver in her hands, Bai Zao displayed a faint smile, but the smile was quite plain, just like her voice.
"Are you okay?"
Luo Huainan looked fairly frail, and he said in a weak voice, "I need to recuperate for a while before leaving here."
Bai Zao said, "We are in the far north, inside the Snowy Kingdom. Leaving will be difficult."
Hearing what she had just said, Luo Huainan displayed a hint of pain and struggle in his eyes.
"Young Sister, my master should have given you the Ten-Thousand Mile Seal, right?"
Bai Zao remained silent, wondering how she would persuade her Big Brother to leave with the Ten-Thousand Mile Seal and let her stay behind.
She wanted to stay behind to wait for Jing Jiu.
The painful expression in Luo Huainan's eyes grew more pronounced because of her silence.
"Big Brother, we have one extra person."
Before she could finish speaking, Luo Huainan said in a weak voice, "Yes, we have two people, but there is only one Ten-Thousand Mile Seal. Obviously it's not enough for two people."
Startled, Bai Zao thought that this wasn't what she intended to express.
Suddenly, a warm energy occurred in the cold cave.
This warm energy came from Luo Huainan's body.
He had stayed in the snow worm's stomach for a long time.
During this period, he had been summoning the Chaoyuan Method of the Center Sect in secret; though his body was still frail after the injury, he had accumulated enough energy.
It was enough energy for him to mount a sneak attack.
Luo Huainan's body moved backward like a lightning, and his broad and strong back bumped into Bai Zao.
Bai Zao wasn't prepared for this attack so that she was thrown into the icy cold cliff wall by the shove, spitting out a mouthful of blood.
The South-Screen Bell let out a crisp ringing sound, automatically attempting to protect its master.
A small dark bell broke through the snow worm's fluid and flew toward the South-Screen Bell!
The cliff wall had collapsed one more time, blocking the cold wind completely this time. It was almost totally dark inside the cave, with a faint light somewhere.
Two small bells lay in the snow, emitting a little bit faint glow.
That dark colored small bell was of course the North-Time Bell.
Lying against the cliff wall, Bai Zao's clothing was full of the blood she had spat out, like the plum flowers.
She was confused, wondering if her Big Brother had lost his mind; otherwise, why would he have attacked her?
What Luo Huainan said next made her feel immensely cold, even colder than the cliff wall inside the cave she was lying against and the wind and snow outside.
"I'm the Big Brother, and there is only one Ten-Thousand Mile Seal, so let me use it then."
His pale face, illuminated by the faint glow, looked like a devil, and the regretful expression in his eyes appeared so insincere.
"Young Sister, you stay here. After I get out of here, I'll tell my master and mistress your position, and they will come to save you."
Bai Zao's face was as white as a sheet of paper, looking at him blankly.
Luo Huainan was her Big Brother and had grown up with her, so they were extremely familiar with each other; but at the moment, she thought his face looked so much more like that of a stranger than she could ever imagine.
She closed her eyes and then opened them again.
What she saw was the same familiar face and the same sincere expression, but why did his face look so ugly now?
Luo Huainan should have been the closest person she had in this world. Bai Zao regarded him as family, and they were even closer than her relationship with her own parents to some extent.
All the people on the Cloud Dream Mountain knew and many of them believed that they would become the Cultivation partners blessed by the entire Cultivation world if nothing unexpected occurred.
In fact, if she were willing to, she would have already married him.
Experiencing such a betrayal and mental agony, some people might have cried sadly, and some people might have cursed him ferociously.
But Bai Zao laughed out loud instead.
However, her smiling face looked feeble, full of bitterness and resentment. She thought the journey of the Cultivation tournament was really ridiculous.
Luo Huainan's sneak attack was intended for the Ten-Thousand Mile Seal in her possession, so he could use it to leave here alive.
He must have conceived this idea when he sent out the help signal in the snow worm's stomach.
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