Hundreds of meters above the air, Su Yang and Qiuyue stood on a wooden boat, their gazes on the small animal that was minding its own business miles in the distance, watching its every little movement, almost like they were playing god.
They have been standing there for a few minutes now, silently inspecting the necklace that was around the Ghost Cat's neck.
\"It is not a storage-type Spiritual Treasure but…\"
After a moment of silence, Su Yang spoke with a pondering expression, \"It seems to be some sort of Spiritual Treasure that deals with curses.\"
\"Curses? Then our clue…\" Qiuyue sighed loudly.
Their chances of finding a clue that will help them return home in this place were becoming slimmer and slimmer.
\"However, there is something weird about it now that I take a closer look,\" said Su Yang.
\"Weird? What's weird about the Spiritual Treasure? I don't see anything wrong with it.\"
Su Yang shook his head and said, \"Not the Spiritual Treasure. There is something off about the Ghost Cat. Although I cannot pinpoint exactly what this feeling is, I am certain that there's something wrong with it. I have seen a few Ghost Cats in my life, but they all feel different when compared to this one.\"
Qiuyue looked at him with a surprised look. He's seen a few Ghost Cats in his life despite its rarity?
\"I was acquainted with this powerful individual who had managed to tame a few Ghost Cats and had unwillingly become familiar with them due to my relationship with her…\"
Hearing this, Qiuyue was shocked. Who'd be willing to go through that much effort and resource to tame not just one, but a 'few' Ghost Cats that are known to be extremely rare and hard to find, much less tame them and their arrogant nature.
And for Su Yang to address this individual as 'powerful', she must be a peak expert within the four Divine Heavens.
\"But what does that have anything to do with us? We still won't get any clues from it.\"
\"You are right, but this feeling coming from it is bothering me the longer I look at it.\"
After a few moments of silence, Su Yang suddenly said,\" Take me to the Ghost Cat, I want to take a closer look at it.\"
\"Eh? But won't it just run away the moment it sees us?\"
\"It might run away, but I have a feeling that it won't. Did you see how it stood still despite being surrounded by humans on all sides when we first saw it? It's too prideful and arrogant. It probably won't run away on sight as it believes that nothing can outspeed it, and it is correct.\"
\"Then what if it attacks you?\" Qiuyue asked since she knows almost nothing about Ghost Cats and its nature.
\"Besides their insane and nearly unrivaled speed, they have little to zero combat ability and could at most hurt normal people or those with weak Cultivation bases, not to mention their non-hostile nature. I will be fine.\"
Qiuyue nodded and commanded the boat to descend towards where the Ghost Cat was resting.
After noticing its presence, the Ghost Cat raised its head to look at the wooden boat in the sky.
It stood on all four of its limbs and stared at it with bright eyes.
Ever since all the humans had disappeared out of thin air like ghosts, its joy from getting chased around had disappeared along with them. And with nobody to play with, it lazily laid around in boredom, silently wondering where everyone had gone.
However, now there were more humans to play with, so it happily waited for them to finish descending without running away.
Once the wooden boat landed, Su Yang began approaching the Ghost Cat in small steps while Qiuyue remained in the boat.
The Ghost Cat quietly watched his every movement, hoping he'd play tag with it. But when it couldn't sense such intentions coming from Su Yang, the hopeful lights in its eyes dimmed, and its gaze turned cold.
Su Yang continued to calmly approach the Ghost Cat despite its cold stares. Once he was only a few meters away from it, he said in a calm voice, \"Despite your limited knowledge, you should be able to understand my words.\"
The Ghost Cat did not react upon hearing his words, almost like it didn't understand a word he'd just said.
However, Su Yang continued to speak regardless, \"I can sense an irregularity within your Profound Qi, and that may have been caused by that Spiritual Treasure around your neck.\"
\"If you want, I can take a look at it for you.\"
After a moment of silence, the Ghost Cat suddenly meowed in a wary tone.
Su Yang shook his head and said, \"It's fine if you don't believe me, it's not as if I really care. The only reason why I even bothered to approach you was because of a friend of mine who adores Ghost Cats to the extreme. If I left you alone while knowing that something might be wrong with you, I won't be able to face her without guilt the next time we meet… That's all.\"
\"But now that I have approached you, I won't feel as much guilt, as I have at least tried to help.\"
After saying those words, Su Yang turned around and began walking back to the wooden boat where Qiuyue was waiting.
However, when Su Yang was halfway back to Qiuyue's side, a small figure appeared in front of him out of thin air like a real ghost.
The Ghost Cat had placed itself in his path to block him, and it'd achieve that without alerting either Su Yang or Qiuyue. There was no wind, not even the slightest sounds, nothing… almost like it'd teleported in front of him.
\"You Ghost Cats' absurd speed is astounding no matter how many times I see it…\" Su Yang showed a slight smile when he recalled the times he'd spent with his friend and her Ghost Cats.
\"Well? What do you want?\" he then said to it.
Although the Ghost Cat couldn't speak, its gaze was filled with the desire to communicate, as it has never seen a human being like Su Yang. Ever since it appeared in this desolate world one day out of the blue hundreds of years ago and without memories prior to this place, it's been looking for a purpose in its life, and when humans started showing up recently, it found joy in life for the first time.
But alas, one day, like their sudden appearance, they disappeared suddenly, and it's been an entire week since then.
Now that another human has shown up, just like it'd hoped, why would it allow him to leave so quickly?
The Ghost Cat meowed at Su Yang, almost like it was telling him to stay, and he somehow understood its feelings.
\"I have already gotten what I came for, there is no longer any reason for me to stay,\" he said calmly.
But the Ghost Cat refused and continued to block his path.
Su Yang wanted to release this Ghost Cat into the wild and let it roam freely, but because this is not the Divine Heavens, he didn't dare to allow such an existence to roam freely, fearing the chaos it could cause in this world without anybody to stop it because of its extreme speed, making it an untouchable existence in this world where the Divine Spirit Realm is the apex.
\"I will let you out of this place once we return to the Divine Heavens, so just endure it for now.\"
\"Meow!\" Hearing his words, the Ghost Cat meowed loudly, its gaze filled with admiration. How is this human capable of understanding its desires without the need for it to speak? It has never encountered such a human despite the thousands of humans it has seen so far.
It then slowly approached Su Yang, even tilting its head to show him the necklace, almost as though it was telling him to look at it.
Seeing its actions, Su Yang smiled inwardly. While Ghost Cats are arrogant in nature, they are much more playful beings, so when they are bored out of their minds, it will do anything that will relief its boredom, even if they have to lower their awareness.
Su Yang then took a knee and lifted the necklace to take a closer look, even pouring some of his Profound Qi to inspect it inwardly.
A few moments later, his calm eyes expanded with surprise. \"This Heaven-grade Spiritual Treasure contains an Immortal-grade curse! And it's even the infamous Spirit's Vengeance curse!\"
\"Spirit's Vengeance? What kind of curse is that?\" Qiuyue asked after hearing him speak out loud.
\"It is a profound curse that deprives the victim of all Profound Qi, sealing their Cultivation completely! No wonder why I felt that there was something off about its Profound Qi! This thing can completely deny even experts at the Ancient Realm Profound Qi!\"
\"Such a potent curse is only at the Immortal-grade?\" Qiuyue asked in a surprised voice.
\"Well, while it is extremely powerful, it can be removed with ease. Hell, even someone at the True Spirit Realm like me can dispell it if they know the right techniques.\"
\"Eh? Then doesn't that make it almost useless?\"
\"For humans, yes. But for beasts like this Ghost Cat that don't know any better? It can be extremely potent. Also, it is commonly used by Beast Tamers in the Divine Heavens to tame powerful wild beasts.\"
Su Yang looked at the Ghost Cat and wondered how it got stuck with such a curse.
Meanwhile, the Ghost Cat was dumbfounded by the revelation. No wonder why its Profound Qi hasn't risen even slightly as of lately! Ever since it found this pretty necklace and wore it, it's had its Profound Qi blocked by this curse!
\"Meow!\" The Ghost Cat began meowing out of frustration and embarrassment, mainly because of its own stupidity.
It then looked at Su Yang with pleading eyes, hoping he'd be able to dispell this curse.
\"You want me to help you with this curse? Well, it's not impossible, but it'll be a bit tricky, especially since I don't have the resources to dispell it right now…\" said Su Yang.
Meanwhile, Qiuyue silently watched this spectacular scene of Su Yang communicating with a cat like it was human. It was something she'd never expected coming from him, even finding it to be somewhat cute.
\"He can be very apathetic at times when it comes to humans, but he seems open with animals… Could it be because of his powerful 'friend' with the Ghost Cats?\"
\"Anyway, give me a moment.\" After saying that, Su Yang sat down and closed his eyes, almost like he was Cultivating.
The Ghost Cat did not interrupt Su Yang and also sat down as if it was about to take a nap, but its eyes were glued to Su Yang's captivating face. Out of the many humans it has seen so far, he is definitely the most pleasant-looking by far.
After many minutes of complete stillness, nearing the hour mark, Su Yang finally opened his eyes.
\"It took some time to look for this technique since I have many techniques with only a few meant for curses, but I have finally found a way to dispell the Spirit's Vengeance.\"
\"Huh?\" Although there was nothing with Su Yang's words, Qiuyue expressed a confused expression.
\"It'd taken him this long to look for a technique? What does he mean by those words? It's almost as if he has a library of cultivating techniques in his head…\" she wondered inwardly.
\"Okay, come here so I can start removing the curse,\" Su Yang urged the Ghost Cat to get closer.
The Ghost Cat was no longer wary of Su Yang and obediently approached him with smooth movements.
Once it was close enough, Su Yang placed his hands on the necklace and began mumbling without any sounds coming out of his mouth. A few seconds later, his hands started glowing a bright yellow color.
Time slowly passed. Seconds quickly turned into minutes, and before he was aware, two hours had passed in the blink of an eye.
A little after the two hours mark, Su Yang finally opened his eyes, and the glow around his hands dimmed until it was gone.
\"We should be able to remove the necklace now…\" Su Yang said as his hands slowly removed the necklace from the Ghost Cat's neck.
When the necklace came out without any problems, Su Yang showed and smile and said, \"You should be fine now.\"
However, right as he said those words, the Ghost Cat began trembling violently with its silver fur dancing like tall grass in a windy grassland.
Seeing this, Su Yang's eyes widened with alert. \"Qiuyue! Get back!\" he exclaimed loudly.
Qiuyue immediately reacted to his words and activated the wooden boat and distanced herself from the scene. As for Su Yang, he activated the Nine Astral Steps and quickly distanced himself many meters away from the Ghost Cat.
The Ghost Cat continued to act bizarrely in place, almost like it was evolving. And as time passed, the Ghost Cat's silver fur would start glowing a whiteish glow, even turning a bit transparent, becoming more like a 'ghost' cat. Its body also shrunk in size, becoming even smaller. However, in compensation, its Profound Qi rose exponentially, exceeding even Qiuyue's Cultivation base by a large margin.
\"T-This is…\" Qiuyue was shocked by the sudden changes, even more, its Cultivation base.
\"The Ancient Realm!\"
When Qiuyue realized that the Ghost Cat's Cultivation base was actually at the Ancient Realm, her face became filled with terror. After all, the Ancient Realm, just like the Mortal Realm and the Divine Realm, was an entire realm above the previous!
Meanwhile, Su Yang was also filled with shock. However, he was not shocked by its profound Cultivation base. Instead, he was shocked speechless by its ghostly appearance.
\"G-Ghost Cat my ass! This thing was a Phantom Cat all along!\"
Phantom Cats, unlike Ghost Cats, are not only extremely fast but also possess powerful spiritual attacks. Although they normally share the same appearance, when a Phantom Cat activates its Profound Qi, it evolves into this spirit-like existence, making its movements faster and even unaffected by all physical injuries! They are like a superior variation of Ghost Cats and, in a way, ancestors of all Ghost Cats!