Translator: Silavin & Tia
Translation Checker: PewPewLazerGun
Editor and Proofreader: Leo of Zion Mountain & Dhael Ligerkeys
At this moment, they could only be certain about one thing: Yuan Du was the cause of everything. As long as they cut off the source and clip the wings that he developed, then the worrying situation in Lang Ya Paradise would be resolved.
Unfortunately, they could not be certain as to where the true Black Ink Clansman for whom Yuan Du had performed the sacrificial offering ritual was currently hiding! Just solving the issue of Yuan Du and the Black Ink Disciples would not eradicate the problem completely. If they could not remove the fundamental cause of this issue, then a second or even a third Yuan Du might appear again in the world several thousand years later.
Li Yuan Wang observed worriedly, “Judging by the meaning behind Yuan Du’s words, the Black Ink Clansman is probably being suppressed and sealed somewhere in the 3,000 Worlds. If his contact with the Black Ink Clan had become more and more frequent over the past 100 years, then it can be speculated that the suppressed and sealed Black Ink Clan member is showing signs of regaining their freedom!”
Yang Kai nodded, “That’s also what Yuan Du claimed.”
“Regarding the place where the Black Ink Clan is being held, do the rest of you have any ideas?” Li Yuan Wang raised his head and looked at the High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters below him.
Everybody shook their heads in response.
Yu Chang Dao spoke, “There has not been any unusual news from any of the Great Territories in the 3,000 Worlds over the years. Besides, there are no related records written in the ancient books of the Cave Heavens and Paradises. It can be surmised that the suppressed and sealed Black Ink Clansman has existed since a very long time ago. This incident might even have occurred before the birth of the Cave Heavens and Paradises.”
Yang Kai suddenly had an idea, “Could it be in the same era as when the Dragon Clan and the Phoenix Clan suppressed and sealed the Black Ink Giant Spirit God?”
Li Yuan Wang reached up and stroked his beard, “That’s not impossible, but nobody can confirm the truth.”
There was no other explanation as to why there were no records in the ancient books of the Cave Heavens and Paradises. If such an evil existence had truly been suppressed and sealed, then the ancient books passed down through the inheritance of the Cave Heavens and Paradises would surely have mentioned the incident.
Even the High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters of the Cave Heavens and Paradises were clueless about this matter. In that case, the suppressed and sealed Black Ink Clan member could only have existed a very long time ago.
“Could it be located in the Shattered Heaven?” Somebody asked with a frown, “The situation of the Great Territories in the 3,000 Worlds is basically known to us. Only the Shattered Heaven is chaotic and filled with all sorts of dangers. Even High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters like us might not escape unscathed if we ventured deep into the Shattered Heaven and encountered danger. It would make sense to say that the Black Ink Clansman was being suppressed and sealed in the Shattered Heaven!”
Yu Xiang Die acknowledged the idea, “Looks like we need to investigate the Shattered Heaven thoroughly. This matter is of grave importance, so there can be no room for negligence.”
Li Yuan Wang nodded in agreement, “Let’s discuss this matter later. At present, it is more important to deal with the Black Ink Disciples in Lang Ya Paradise.”
“Senior Brother Li, please make the arrangements. We will support Lang Ya Paradise unconditionally!”
They originally thought that there were many Black Ink Disciples in Lang Ya Paradise, which was why several dozen High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters had rushed here so quickly. They wanted to take precautions to prevent future disasters. Now that it had been confirmed that there were not many Black Ink Disciples, their tense nerves relaxed considerably. With so many High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters present, it would not be a problem for them to deal with a few Black Ink Disciples. They only needed to be careful not to be contaminated by the Black Ink Strength.
As for the affairs of Lang Ya Paradise, they had to be settled by Lang Ya Paradise.
In the following days, everything was calm and quiet. The training that was triggered by Yang Kai was the talk of the town. That training had also inspired the determination of many Open Heaven Realm Masters in Lang Ya Paradise to cultivate harder. It was said that as many as several hundred Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm Masters in Lang Ya Paradise had entered retreat all at once after the training. Some even vowed not to come out of retreat until they advanced into the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm. Consequently, the once lively Lang Ya Paradise suddenly became much quieter and more desolate than usual.
In the Spirit Province where Li Yuan Wang lived, many High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters concealed their figures as though they were waiting for somebody to come. Similarly, Yang Kai concealed himself in the Void. With the help of the Grand Array around the Spirit Province, he disguised himself to prevent his aura from being discovered.
On the porch of a thatched hut below, Li Yuan Wang sat in a rattan chair like an elderly farmer in the countryside. There was a teacup in his hand, and he would take a sip from time to time.
A stream of light sped over from a distance and landed in front of Li Yuan Wang. That person cupped his fist and said, “Greetings, Sect Master!”
Li Yuan Wang smiled and gestured with his hand, “Sit!”
Yuan Du nodded and sat beside Li Yuan Wang before he asked curiously, “Did you summon me here because you needed something from me, Sect Master?”
Li Yuan Wang shook his head, “Can’t I have a chat with you for no particular reason, Senior Brother?”
Yuan Du was slightly taken aback. [‘Senior Brother’… It has been so long since I heard those two words. When was the last time I heard this title? Was it 3,000 years ago? Or, 5,000 years ago?]
It was so long ago that he could no longer recall.
“Of course, you can.” Yuan Du smiled, “Come to think of it, it has been a long time since we Fellow Brothers sat together so quietly like this.”
“That’s right.” Li Yuan Wang sighed, “Ever since you became the Vice Sect Master and I became the Sect Master, we’ve only been worrying about Lang Ya Paradise every single day.”
Yuan Du glanced sideways at Li Yuan Wang, “I’ve never seen you paying much attention to these affairs, Junior Brother. On the contrary, the grey hairs of the three Vice Sect Masters have been increasing year after year.”
“Bullshit!” Li Yuan Wang responded with a straight face, “I’ve devoted all my blood, sweat, and tears to Lang Ya Paradise! How could Lang Ya Paradise become so glorious otherwise!?”
Yuan Du jokingly scolded, “Don’t flatter yourself! This is the foundation that many Seniors have worked hard to lay down over immeasurable years! You are simply managing what they succeeded to build!”
Li Yuan Wang replied seriously, “Managing what they succeeded to build is not a simple feat. Everybody else thinks that being the Lang Ya Paradise Sect Master is marvellous, but they do not know how much my heart breaks over the Lang Ya Paradise disciples.”
Yuan Du curled his lips, “Your shameless behaviour has never changed, no matter how many years passed, Junior Brother.”
Li Yuan Wang suddenly exclaimed, “On the other hand, you’ve changed a lot, Senior Brother!”
Yuan Du’s eyes narrowed slightly, “How did I change?”
Their gazes met. Then, Li Yuan Wang’s expression became extremely solemn, “You’ve gotten older, Senior Brother. You’ve long lost the suaveness of youth!”
After saying that, he burst into laughter with a smug look on his face, as though he himself was very young.
Yuan Du also laughed along.
The two Fellow Brothers seemed to have returned to the time when they were young and carefree. Although they constantly used to bicker, they had a very close relationship with each other.
Yuan Du had joined the Sect earlier, and by the time he advanced into the Open Heaven Realm, Li Yuan Wang had only just started cultivating. It was just that Yuan Du’s Order when he first advanced into the Open Heaven Realm was not as high as Li Yuan Wang’s. That was why they were both in the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm today.
“Do you think the old man is dead?” Li Yuan Wang suddenly asked.
Yuan Du chuckled, “The old man is such a lively person. How can he be dead? He was in the Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm when he left!”
“En!” Li Yuan Wang nodded, “You’re right. With his personality, even if everybody else was dead, he would still be alive and kicking!”
At the mention of the old man, Yuan Du seemed to deflate and lose interest. Therefore, the two Fellow Brothers fell back into silence.
Li Yuan Wang took a sip of tea, and his voice became a little grimmer, “Senior Brother, don’t blame the old man too much for what happened back then. He made you advance into the Fifth-Order Open Heaven Realm for your sake. I didn’t understand at the time, but now that I am the Sect Master… Every time a disciple preparing to advance into the Open Heaven Realm comes and asks me which Order would be safer for them to advance into based on their heritage, I feel like I am holding their future and destiny in my hands. My choices… My answer to their question will affect their entire life.”
Yuan Du remained silent.
“I was too young back then. Besides, too much time has passed. There is no way to determine what your heritage was at the time, but since the old man asked you to advance into the Fifth-Order Open Heaven Realm, it must mean that advancing into the Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm would have been very risky for you. The old man at the time was just like me now. He held your future in his hands, but his choice was made for your sake. It may only be a one-Order difference between the Fifth-Order Open Heaven Realm and the Sixth-Order Open Heaven Realm, but the slightest misstep would have extinguished your Soul. How could the old man bear to watch you fall short at such a critical moment?”
Yuan Du lowered his head, causing a dark shadow to cover his eyes.
“To this day, do you still think that the old man was wrong, Senior Brother?” Li Yuan Wang asked.
Yuan Du finally opened his mouth, “As you’ve said, Junior Brother, how can I not know that the old man was only acting in my best interests?”
“If that’s the case, then why can’t you understand?” Li Yuan Wang looked at Yuan Du sorrowfully.
Yuan Du shook his head, “Even if there is only a glimmer of hope, it’s still a possibility. A person who gives up before even trying is already sick in the head!”
Li Yuan Wang stared at Yuan Du calmly. A long while passed before he sighed, “Senior Brother, it’s never too late to turn around and repent!”
Yuan Du’s gaze went slack, and he stared into the distance quietly, “I’ve already passed the point of no return, Junior Brother!”
His eyes seemed to have a peculiar power that allowed him to see through the void. Staring directly in the direction of Yang Kai, he frowned, “To be honest, I’m more curious about how that boy is able to resist the Black Ink Strength.”
He had not known anything when he first arrived, but he soon understood after his conversation with Li Yuan Wang. He was not a fool after all. Besides, Li Yuan Wang’s behaviour today was simply too abnormal.
Yang Kai’s hiding spot was located not far from Yuan Du, and due to the gap in their strengths, it was impossible for Yang Kai to keep his presence hidden under Yuan Du’s intentional search of the surroundings.
Seeing as his cover had been seen through, Yang Kai revealed himself without further ado and cupped his fist, “Greetings, Senior!”
Yuan Du looked at Yang Kai with a puzzled look on his face, “Your Small Universe has already been corrupted by the Black Ink, so why aren’t you affected?”
“Senior, what you saw was this…” Yang Kai partially manifested his Small Universe, causing its projection to appear behind him.
Just as Yuan Du had previously seen, the Black Ink Strength writhed about in Yang Kai’s Small Universe; however, as Yang Kai’s Small Universe spread outward, more scenery entered Yuan Du’s vision.
Yuan Du immediately understood, “Four Universe Pillars!”
If there was anything in the world that could truly restrain the Black Ink Strength, then it could only be the Four Universe Pillars. The powers of a Divine Spirit could not fully resist the erosion of the Black Ink Strength. After all, even a Divine Spirit could become corrupted by the Black Ink. It was just that the possibility of a Divine Spirit being corrupted by the Black Ink was much lower than an Open Heaven Realm Master of the same strength.
Needless to say, Yuan Du knew about the effects of the Four Universe Pillars. It was just that the Four Universe Pillars were extremely rare treasures that could only be dreamt about by most; hence, he never even imagined that Yang Kai would have one of them, much less that Yang Kai would be so bold and reckless as to suppress and seal the Black Ink Strength in his Small Universe to deceive his eyes.
“So, does that mean Shi Zheng is dead?”
He was the one who ordered Shi Zheng to use the Black Ink Insect to corrupt Yang Kai, but Yang Kai was safe and sound. Not to mention, Yang Kai had the Black Ink Strength suppressed and sealed in his Small Universe. The source of the Black Ink Strength could only have been Shi Zheng.
Yang Kai nodded.
During their conversation, numerous figures appeared out of nowhere. There were at least a dozen High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters gathered in this place. Meanwhile, Li Yuan Wang gave a wave of his hand, activating the Sealing Grand Array of the Spirit Province to isolate the inside from the outside.
Yuan Du swept his glance over the crowd and chuckled, “What an impressive line-up! You really think highly of this Yuan!”
With so many High-Rank Open Heaven Realm Masters, even an Eighth-Order Open Heaven Realm Master might not stand a chance, much less Yuan Du, who was only in the Seventh-Order Open Heaven Realm. He had no chance of winning this fight. It was certain death for him!