Yu Yan glanced at the scroll in his hands, and only replied a moment later. “The seal on this scroll, comes from an era long past. Even I am only capable of scratching the surface of it. This is an incantation used to seal demonic beasts. It’s similar to a mustard seed dimensional space, yet, it contains a hint of the laws of time…” As though he had just thought of something, Yu Yan paused for a moment, and turned to look at his disciple.
Zhu Yao suddenly felt as though a group of horses had suddenly galloped past her mind, leaving trails of horse-shit behind. “That’s right, I stayed inside for a day, but when I came out, a thousand years had already passed.” In that scroll, the flow of time was actually a difference of about a thousand years.
Zhu Yao then explained to Yu Yan what happened inside.
Yu Yan frowned, and his expression became pretty stern. “If that’s the case, this scroll must have been created by the Ancient Race. What’s sealed inside are most probably untamed exotic beasts, which are rumoured to be enemies of the Ancient Race and possess comparable strength.”
It was no wonder the demonic beasts had persistently attacked her after she released her dragon’s aura. It was actually due to an old hatred.
“Then what are we going to do with it?” With how dangerous this scroll was, the moment one of them were to be released, a Godzilla destroying New York scenario would definitely happen.
“There’s no need for you to worry.” Yu Yan said. “There’s a self-destruction incantation within the scroll in the first place. Adding that it’s been such a long time, the demonic beasts inside no longer exist. Most probably, the reason why the flow of time inside is different, is to weaken the vigilance of those demonic beasts. Most probably, they themselves are unaware that they’re being trapped inside the scroll.”
So that’s the use of that moving ‘Severed Lands’. The thoughts of those Ancient Ones sure were extensive and profound.
At that moment, Zhu Yao once again remembered that shadow. According to Sesame’s guess, that person should have come from the Higher Realm. And since her master had descended from above, he should have a clearer image regarding this issue.
After Yu Yan finished hearing her explanation, his expression, however, instantly sank. After a long while, he slowly spoke. “The shadow you’re speaking of, most probably did not originate from the Higher Realm.”
“It’s not? Then what exactly is it?” For a being which possessed such terrifying strength, other than someone who had come from the Higher Realm, she really couldn’t think of anyone else.
“Yu… Yao.” Yu Yan suddenly heaved a long sigh, and stroked her head. “I can only tell you this. There are some matters that you do not have to step into too deeply. This world will soon undergo a great tribulation. The reason I descended into the Lower Realm, is to fetch you up.”
“Great tribulation? What great tribulation?”
“…” Yu Yan went silent for a moment. Even if he were to be involved in those matters, he would still be powerless to do anything. In his lifetime, he only had this one disciple of his. No matter what, he couldn’t simply sit by and watch. Hence, even if he had to lose a part of his cultivation, he still forcefully descended upon the Lower Realm, and wanted to bring her back safely. “Be obedient, and come with me.”
The longer Zhu Yao listened, the messier her heart was. Hearing her master’s tone, that whatever great tribulation was definitely unordinary, and there was a huge possibility that it’s related to the bug.
“Just what is happening? Is it something that can only be avoided by going to the Higher Realm?”
Yu Yan still kept a solemn expression, and simply looked directly at her.
“You can’t say it, is that it?” Zhu Yao clenched her hands. “I’m not heading up.”
Yu Yan’s expression sank. “Stop with the nonsense!”
“I do not wish to be a runaway troop.” She had already known about the bug. If there really was a great tribulation or whatever, then let it come.
She had been in this world for so many years. Although she still had attachments to her former world, the knot on this side was growing tighter as well. Sesame. Little radish. Zi Mo. Zi Dan. Feng Yi. Ancient Hill Sect. And the Azureflight Sect which she had established with her very own hands. Actually, she had long treated these people as her own family. However, now that she was clearly aware of a dangerous problem, if she were to flee on her own, would she still be human?
Zhu Yao smiled. “In any case, I can’t die. The person you have to least worry about is me.”
After her death, she could still hold expectations for her next resurrection. But what about the others? Even if she really was unable to stop the bug, she still had to warn those people, right?
“Yu Yao. You should know that the path of cultivation had always been like this.” Yu Yan sighed. “The Great Dao is merciless, and the path of cultivation is a heaven-defying matter in the first place. I’m very aware of your personality, but you’re unable to save everyone. The strong eats the weak, this has always been the rule of this world. The strong will be revered, and what happens to the rest are merely part of their fortune and fate. You will definitely be harmed by your own kindness one day.”
Had she not already forked out too big of a price for not enduring in specific moments? Using the example of Xiao Yi back then, clearly she could have chopped off the root of the problem at the very beginning, yet, because of her kindness, she had forgiven him several times. In the end, however, she brought such an ending to herself. Although she had forgotten about that incident, she would one day remember it. On that day back then, her cry was filled with such sadness, and her regrets were so intense. He really could not bear to see her walk on the same path once again.
“Master, you people have always spoken about how the Great Dao is merciless, and how the Heavenly Dao is unnatural. However, who has ever actually seen this so-called Heavenly Dao?” She knew of all these logics. Ever since she came into this world, the phrase she had heard the most was ‘the strong will be revered’. “Has anyone actually asked the heavens, and obtain an exact answer? In this world, the weak is eaten by the strong. If you don’t wish to be killed, you have to take the initiative to kill instead. Just who came up with this ideology and told everyone? Was it the so-called heavens?”
Zhu Yao lightly smiled. “No, that’s not it. The heavens had never told the people to be merciless, to pursue authority and to be brutal. Yet, everyone seems to have taken it as the norm. If you’re not strong, you will be beaten. Killing, and being killed. These things are happening every day. It will be fine as long as you’re strong. It’s fine as long as you have sufficient capabilities. As long you’re strong enough, killing a weakling doesn’t seem to be a big matter at all. Hence, everyone will be tangled by hatred and vengeance. They fight against each other. They kill, loot their treasures, and rob off their resources. Are these really correct? In order to become strong, people will use every underhanded means possible, even to the extent of destroying their humanity.”
Xiao Yi would be a fine example. He clearly possessed peak-level aptitude, and had a heaven-defying fortune. Even if he were to cultivate using regular methods, he could have completely relied on his own strength to achieve the Great Dao and ascend. Yet, he simply could not be satisfied. If he had something good, he would wish to have something better. Hence, when he had the Metal Spirit, he even wanted the Water Spirit, and the Wood Spirit. And, without even clearing up the truth of the matter, he laid his hands on her. He did not even take into the account of the kindness she had displayed from the numerous times she saved him. No, in the depths of his heart, the word ‘kindness’ no longer existed. Only the obsession of becoming strong remained.
“I don’t understand. Could it be that in order to achieve the Great Dao, there’s a need to compete like this? With such a cultivation method, just what will remain in the end?” Zhu Yao frowned. “Is the Great Dao which is achieved through suspicions, plots, and slaughters, really the truth behind the Heavenly Dao?”
Yu Yan turned silent. He had never thought of these questions before. Ever since he stepped onto the path of cultivation, the ideology of the strong eating the weak had been deeply carved into the depths of his heart. His aptitude was excellent, although there were some obstacles along the way, he had never thought that there were problems with them. Because, this was how this world was, and he had never suspected the makings of this world.
But… His disciple did.
“Everyone kept talking about cultivation, cultivation, and even more about comprehending the laws to become deities. These are dreams that everyone wishes to fulfil. Shouldn’t the word ‘deity’, be every practitioner’s most beautiful dream? Then according to human nature, it should be the most perfect and gentlest part of one’s heart. However, in the current cultivation world, I can’t even see a single hint of such a beautiful view. Everyone says that the road of cultivation is a path reeked with blood, but has anyone questioned if the end of this bloody path is really perfect?”
“What’s a deity? And what’s the Dao? The strong eats the weak, the dissidents are removed. Is this really the only path to become deities?” Zhu Yao sighed. She had long wanted to say these words, and they’re also the questions she had never been able to understand. “Everyone believes that absolute strength is the actual Dao. But, I believe that it’s merely the darkest part of human nature, as what I see are merely greed, selfishness, cruelty, and brutality. How can all these fit the word ‘deity’? Is there anyone who still remembers that in human nature, there exist the most basic forms of kindness, selflessness, forgiveness, and devotion? Are these not important at all?”
“Master, are we cultivating to become deities, or are we cultivating to become devils?”
When her words fell, suddenly, a clear spiritual sound came from the sky. That sound felt as though it was a bell which came from the nine heavens, it sounded so very far, yet, it seemed to be ringing from the side of her ear as well. Zhu Yao felt a wave of comfortable energy flowing into her body, cleansing the discomfort within her body.
For a moment, a bright light spanning an endless distance shone, as though an extreme radiance had filled the entire sky, faint glitters of light then scattered down from the heavens. The glitters seemed as though they contained some unique form of energy, as the moment they touched the ground, flowers began to bloom, and withered trees were given life once again. The muddy ground they were standing on earlier, had already turned into a sea of flowers.
“This is…” Could she have accidentally activated a special effect?
“A worldly phenomenon.” Yu Yan however, deeply frowned. “With a phenomenon of this scale, it’s definitely a warning brought by the Heavenly Dao. It seems that day isn’t far away.”
And what day is that?
“Are you really not heading up with me?” Yu Yan once again asked.
Zhu Yao clenched her fists, and heavily shook her head.
This was the first time she was resisting her master’s will in the truest sense. She was a little guilty. She could see that her master had went through a lot to descend upon the Lower Realm to fetch her, and even his cultivation had dropped back to a Demigod.
However, Zhu Yao did not feel there was anything wrong with her decision. Actually, in her own world, the term ‘deity’ had always existed as well. In the very beginning, it merely came from rumours. The concept of it was very vague, and hence the reason they termed these rumours as myths. For example, in certain myths, some esteemed monks or Daoist priests would achieve deityhood by accumulating great merits.
However, in her mind, those so-called people who had attained deityhood, were all people who were great and kind. They were all people who had, in their eras, or in legends, done several good things, and accumulating merits were the standard for becoming deities. And regarding the deities stated in myths and legends, they were all individuals who took responsibility for the fate of the world, and what they spread were filled with positive energy. However, she had never heard of any one of them who had killed a lot of people or stole a large number of treasures to become a deity.
Hence the reason why she began to grow suspicious of this world. And from Sesame’s and Master’s words, it seemed as though after ascending into the Higher Realm, the ideology of strength being everything would not budge even the slightest bit either. Then it’s the same no matter where she would go.
“Hah…” Yu Yan heaved a long sigh, a hint of fatigue revealed on his face. His lips moved, as though he still wanted to say something. However, in the end, he reached out his hand to stroke her head. His expression became even more solemn, and after hesitating for a moment, he still could not help but step forward and embrace her in his arms.
A pillar of extreme white light descended from the skies, and instantly enveloped his body. This was the Light of Guidance. In the first place, he had forcefully descended upon the Lower Realm, so the time he could stay was limited. And currently, he had run out of time.
“No matter what you think, do not slack off on your cultivation. Master… will wait for you.”