edited by Fiorisi
Xuan Lingzi’s voice fell, leaving only silence in the stone room.
He gathered two fingers together and a golden sword-light broke the stone table in front of the praying mat. Immediately, a wobbling remnant soul appeared from the stone table. His body was very faint like it would break in the next second, but the words “human or demon” still repeated endlessly from his lips.
If Luo Jianqing woke at this very moment, he was afraid that he would immediately discover that this voice was the very thing he had been struggling against for so long while trying to cross the sixth pass. This was merely a remnant soul, and it can even be said that this remnant soul had little spiritual sense. However, he’d been containing the original master’s obsession, and hadn’t dispersed for a very long time.
“Human or demon, human or demon…”
Xuan Lingzi’s cold face had no emotion as the golden eight-petaled lotus on his forehead abruptly blossomed into innumerable rays of light. The remnant soul howled painfully, shuddering as he raised his head to look at him. After looking at him up and down for a very long time, he exclaimed sharply, “You are a demon!”
Xuan Lingzi snorted lightly and sneered. “In what way am I a demon?”
As if the voice didn’t hear him at all, he ferociously pounced towards Xuan Lingzi.
Xuan Lingzi raised his sword-light, and the remnant soul started to howl miserably. His eyes gradually became clearer and brighter. After a while, he raised his head to look at Xuan Lingzi, and asked in astonishment, “A Nascent Soul?!” After a moment, the remnant soul said in fright, “Half a Nascent Soul… you are a cultivator higher than the Mahayana stage!
Xuan Lingzi did not take note of the remnant soul’s words at all. With an indifference like a frozen lotus, he said neutrally, “You have already recovered your consciousness. Now apologize for wrongly accusing my disciple of being a demon.”
Not waiting for the other person to attack, the remnant soul shrieked hoarsely, “He’s a demon, he’s a demon, he’s a demon!”
Xuan Lingzi sneered. “What nonsense!”
The remnant soul shuddered as he spoke. “He is not tolerated by the heavens’ 81 Greater Daos and 3,000 Lesser Daos. If he isn’t a demon, then what is he!”
“So cultivators that are not tolerated by the heavenly will are demons?”
Xuan Lingzi’s chang pao swung, a bit of golden light falling in the stone room. He asked calmly, “Then, am I one?”
The remnant soul was suddenly speechless. In a flash, he seemed to turn insane again, and began to repeat endlessly, “A Mahayana stage demonic cultivator, a Mahayana stage demonic cultivator, a demon master, you are a demon master… you are a demon, you are a demon, you are a demon!”
Xuan Lingzi’s phoenix eyes fell on this mad remnant soul for a moment. He watched on indifferently as the remnant soul held his head in agony. According to the remnant soul’s nature, he would begin to attack him, but whenever he raised his head to look at him, he timidly returned his line of sight.
Until the very end, the remnant soul flew up slowly, repeatedly hitting the ceiling of the stone room. He had absolutely no physical body, only screaming “demon master” and “human or demon”, all the while incessantly abusing himself in this manner.
At this, Xuan Lingzi only watched quietly. Even though the remnant soul knocked into Li Xiuchen’s body, making the unconscious Li Xiuchen shudder, he never stopped him. When the remnant soul was just about to hit Luo Jianqing’s body, Xuan Lingzi’s eyes finally shrunk and swept the remnant soul back, with a flick of his sleeve.
The almighty Spirit-Refining cultivator’s voice echoed like thunder in the narrow stone room.
“You are already dead, and yet you continue with this obsession? Since ancient times, demons and humans have never lived alongside each other. In this generation, I have always done as humans do. The two races, human and demon, have had peace between them for hundreds of years. Now you must leave. This is your final destination, after all.”
“Human or demon… a demon master, you are a demon master…”
“You accused my disciple of being a demon and nearly caused him to get possessed. You must compensate for causing him trouble to this degree.”
“Demon master, you are a demon master, you… ahhhh!!!”
Xuan Lingzi’s chang pao fluttered, and a golden light pierced through the remnant soul’s body, making him scream in agony. After making the same effort required to make a cup of tea, the remnant soul’s blood-curdling screeches abruptly came to an end. He silently lowered his head to look at the ground, like he had no awareness.
Xuan Lingzi said quietly, “Except for that person, give the reward you owe to everyone else.”
The remnant soul looked at Li Xiuchen out of the corner of his eye and nodded lightly. “Yes.”
The storm clouds in the skies got even thicker, producing a rumbling noise as if they criticized Xuan Lingzi’s words.
However, Xuan Lingzi ignored it and said again, “To my disciple, give the reward you owe to him.”
The remnant soul nodded. “Yes.”
Xuan Lingzi flicked his sleeve. Inside that wide, spacious sleeve, a blood-red light suddenly flew out.
The storm clouds in the skies cried ferociously. Each bolt of lightning struck only in the vicinities of Yi Tian Mountains, and one thick, solid, devastating red bolt of lightning struck precisely towards Xuan Lingzi.
A golden light flashed between Xuan Lingzi’s forehead, and the Xuan Ling sword appeared in his hand. Raising his sword at the heavens, he sent his majestic spiritual energy soaring up towards the sky.
The lightning and the golden sword flowed together in midair, producing a sound that shook the earth and skies.
At that moment, the mountain peaks near True Lord Beidou’s remnants were all razed to the ground. A powerful sound wave dispersed shaking the cultivators who had gathered around in curiosity. Cultivators below Nascent Soul stage spat out a mouthful of blood while cultivators in Qi Condensation stage suffered critical injuries along with dizziness.
The storm clouds were still screaming but didn’t dare send down any more lightning tribulations. And in that stone room, the remnant soul’s head was lowered as he stared at the ground, and Luo Jianqing remained unconscious. And not a single soul knew that the most powerful cultivator on earth was staggering, spitting out mouthfuls of blood one after another.
That blood was glittering as Xuan Lingzi propped half of his body up on Xuan Ling, and raised his head to face the remnant soul. “This belongs to my disciple.”
His voice fell. That blood-red ray of light flew towards the remnant soul, who had thought to catch it, but he had not yet moved when that terrifying breath paralyzed him with awe. He only naively stood there and saw the blood-red light stop in front of his eyes.
The remnant soul said respectfully, “Yes.”
Xuan Lingzi muttered to himself for a very long time while staring at that red light. Finally, he brushed away the little thing inside the red light, then walked to the side of Luo Jianqing’s body.
His young and elegant, handsome face was covered in sweat, but his breathing was smooth and steady. It was clear that he had already fallen asleep.
Xuan Lingzi looked at him silently for a very long time, then sighed softly. Finger pointed at Luo Jianqing’s forehead, like how he had previously handled Li Xiuchen, he drew out a beam of white light. His movements were extremely tender with Luo Jianqing only letting out a muffled groan.
A moment later, Xuan Lingzi suddenly disappeared. A ray of golden light broke through the remnants’ boundaries, flying towards Tai Hua Mountain, then finally disappeared inside Tai Hua Mountain’s defensive formations.
Tai Hua Mountain, Cang Shuang Peak.
At the summit of Cang Shuang Peak, there was a grand, imposing hall that overlooked the entire peak, emitting overwhelming righteousness. In this hall, an old man with grizzled hair was meditating on a praying mat with his back and shoulders straight.
In front of him were four layers of lifebound lamps. The fourth layer had several dozens of lamps, the third had six, the second had only two lamps remaining, and finally the first layer, located at the very top, only had one golden lifebound lamp, its flames flickering.
Tai Hua Mountain’s sect leader Hao Xingzi’s eyes were shut, meditating in cultivation. In a flash, the golden lifebound lamp suddenly went out, and Hao Xingzi opened his eyes. He looked at the one curtain with shock, and said in a quiet and astonished voice, “Junior brother Xuan Lingzi?!”
His voice had just fallen when Hao Xingzi transformed into a ray of white light and flew to Tai Hua Mountain’s centermost Yu Xiao Peak.
But in the Yi Tian Mountains, hundreds of li away from Tai Hua Mountain, the disciples of Tai Hua Mountain and Yi Tian Sect were still going through their cruel practice experience.
In the Endless Wasteland, the demon beasts were too many to count. Since childhood, Tai Hua Mountain’s cultivators were assigned by their masters to kill demon beasts in hand-to-hand combat at the Wan Shou Mountains. They had plenty of experience with actual combat, but not the Yi Tian Sect disciples. The majority’s constitutions were not strong enough, nor did they have much experience in actual combat. Many disciples had already broken the jade piece to leave the remnants.
Therefore, by the time they truly left the Endless Wasteland, Tai Hua Mountain still had fifteen people left, but Yi Tian Sect only had two remaining.
The party was made up of seventeen people and ran across each other in the sixth pass. The strange thing was, they waited for a very long time in this pass, but there was only darkness, like nothing was there, which made them confused.
And in that seventh pass, the Tianshu Pass, Luo Jianqing’s fingers twitched, and he slowly rose to consciousness.
After just going through that fight with the demon fox to stop it from possessing his body, Luo Jianqing’s spiritual energy had been dried up for a while now. He didn’t even have the strength to get up and could only open his eyes. He saw Li Xiuchen laying right in the corner, his entire body covered in blood.
Luo Jianqing squinted. He had not reacted yet when suddenly, he felt something strange. He turned his head to look and saw a vague shadow floating in front of the praying mat, head lowered and unspeaking.
Luo Jianqing’s eyes widened. He was already preparing to take out the bamboo umbrella from his storage ring, but he heard the remnant soul say quietly, “The practice experience has ended. You have failed.”
That voice had just fallen when a white light flashed on Li Xiuchen’s body. He disappeared from the remnants almost effortlessly.
Luo Jianqing stared blankly at this scene, not understanding what happened at all. The only thing he did was struggle against that phantom demon fox for a very long time, then lose consciousness. How could a remnant soul suddenly appear when he had just opened his eyes, and how did Li Xiuchen seem to be so critically injured?
Luo Jianqing raised a bit of spiritual energy he had just recovered, guarding against his surroundings vigilantly.
The remnant soul’s hoarse voice echoed, “You survived this lord’s remnants, and now this lord will gift his three magical tools to you.”
He paused, and then a hateful expression appeared on his face. “Humans and demons must not coexist. I must exterminate the demon race! I, True Lord Beidou, rushed into the battlefield for many years and killed a great number of demon beasts by myself. Between the human and demon races, one must die! These three magical tools are the most effective against demon beasts, and they will certainly help you behead demons and wipe out devils.”
Three rays of white light appeared in front of Luo Jianqing.
At this, Luo Jianqing, “…”
…So say, what was he going to do with these?
But the remnant soul was not done speaking. He continued, “This lord still has a manual here, which will be given to you as well.”
This time, the remnant soul spoke very simply and did not speak of any other rubbish. A ray of blood-red light flew straight towards Luo Jianqing. At this moment, Luo Jianqing had already recovered 30% of his spiritual energy and raised his hand to catch the red light.
It was a blood-red jade piece, only the size of his palm. It resembled condensed blood, brightly-colored and strikingly dazzling. In his hand, it seemed like it could burn him. At the moment it was quietly waiting for its master’s inspection. A powerful oppressive aura was coming from the jade piece, turning the air stagnant.
Luo Jianqing’s eyebrows were knit tightly. He looked at the remnant soul. “Elder, is this…”
His voice suddenly came to a stop. In Luo Jianqing’s astonished gaze, the remnant soul vacantly raised his head. His body turned into innumerable white points, fading away into the stone room. There was only a low, coarse crowing that still echoed for a very long time—
“Human… or demon?”
His voice was mixed with obsession and regret that crossed through time.
Since the remnant soul had already disappeared, Luo Jianqing was left with no choice but to examine the four things he had gotten. In his sight, one of the three was an earth-rank magical tool. Although it was quite precious, it was also something a Nascent Soul cultivator could own.
Except for the blood-red jade piece, everything made Luo Jianqing feel completely bewildered.
The jade piece emitted a frightening aura that seemed to cross through ancient times and attack him.
Could that True Lord Beidou really have had such good fortune that he could arrange that frightening Ursa Major Seven Star Formation and obtain this frightening jade piece?
After hesitating for a very long time, Luo Jianqing sent out a bit of spiritual sense and pierced through the jade piece.
In a flash, a shocking, oppressive voice echoed in his ear——
“Seize the lasting years, seize the boundless earth; seize the life energy of all living things, seize the fortune of the heavens and earth. Seize man, seize demon, seize the heavenly law — this will be known as the Nine…” The voice suddenly stopped, then after a moment, the voice spoke again. “This will be known as the ‘Nine Heavenly Seizure Record’.”