Wuxiaworld > Nightfall > 1046 Looking Up To Sky

1046 Looking Up To Sky

It was undoubtedly a great pressure for Ning Que to confront that powerful priest in an indigo gown for the whole night. His clothes were soaked by sweat and then frozen by the cold wind repeatedly.

The Abbey Dean left Peach Mountain and suddenly appeared in Chang'an, which was naturally shocking. But what frightened Ning Que more was that how could the Abbey Dean restore his Ocean of Qi and Mountain of Snow?

Although they hadn't engaged yet, Ning Que clearly sensed that the Abbey Dean had regained all his power. He even felt that the Abbey Dean perfectly blended into Heaven and Earth and feared that he would lose the opponent's position if he were to blink.

They confronted each other for a whole night, which gave Ning Que much time to think. He thought a lot but couldn't get any answers, for he couldn't understand what happened to the Abbey Dean. Then he could only focused on calculating the current situation on Peach Mountain and the Song Kingdom based on the Abbey Dean's arrival. 

The peace negotiations have obviously failed. Is it true that the Abbey Dean wanted Ye Su dead? Then what about Ye Hongyu? Is the Abbey Dean not worried about the split of Taoism? Is he so confident to defeat the Academy?

Ning Que was happy to see the split of Taoism, so he ordered Chu Youxian and Chen Qi to send messages to Ye Hongyu. But the current situation unsettled him since everything fell out of his calculation.

The snow kept falling. The city gate was closed, and the Tang army guarding the city had been withdrawn.

All of a sudden, the Abbey Dean looked to the direction of the East Sea. Ning Que also took a glance at the east.

The Abbey Dean never said a word ever since last night, but at this moment, his opened his mouth calmly. "You said that you want to have a talk with the world. I also want to have a talk with you."

Ning Que did say that he wanted to have a talk with the world, but in a certain sense, he only wanted to have a talk with the Abbey Dean. The Abbey Dean said he wanted to have a talk with Ning Que, but what he really wanted was a talk with the whole world.

The Abbey Dean pushed his wheelchair over the cliff and went down Peach Mountain, proving that his Ocean of Qi and Mountain of Snow was recovering and that he would soon be as powerful as he was in the past. This was a crucial moment.

At this moment, the first sentence he said to the world was simple, but it was like a thunder.

He withdrew his sight from the east and said to Ning Que who stood on the city wall, "Ye Su is dead."

Ye Su is dead, or I killed Ye Su. Ning Que was silent, revealing no anger or sorrow. He even didn't ask how he died. Just one moment ago, he also sensed something changed between Heaven and Earth by the East Sea and heard something vaguely.

His silence didn't last for too long. He sighed and then laughed bitterly, for he felt lost and didn't know what to think.

"Then is Ye Hongyu dead too?" He was not asking the Abbey Dean, but more like asking himself with a strong negative attitude. But actually he knew clearly that Taoism would definitely kill Ye Hongyu before killing Ye Su.

Ye Su was the founder of the New Stream, and Ye Hongyu was the Great Divine Priest of Judgement of the Divine Hall of West-Hill. The two were powerful enough to change the course of history and used to be the Academy's hope. But at this point, the hope had become an illusory bubble. He didn't know what to do except to stay silent.

Even if Ye Su was killed by Taoism, like what Yu Lian had calculated, he would think it was not a great loss to the Academy and the Great Tang, instead it probably would benefit the spread of the New Stream. 

But he was more aware that many things could not be calculated objectively and calmly. If Ye Hongyu was dead for real...

The Abbey Dean just looked at him quietly.

One night passed and the string had penetrated Ning Que's skin. Three fingers of his right hand began to bleed, and the blood dyed the string red, falling down the wall like rains and falling on the snow.

There were many reasons why he didn't shoot the Abbey Dean. The most important one was that he wanted to hold on to his last hope. He could not shoot if he was not absolutely sure that Thirteen Primordial Arrows would kill the Abbey Dean.

There might be many different endings for something that hadn't happened, but there was only one conclusion for something that had happened, such as the deaths of Ye Su and Ye Hongyu.

But when would the confrontation end? Was it necessary for Ning Que to shoot the priest in the indigo gown until the seas dried up and the rocks decayed?

How long did the Abbey Dean plan to stand in the snow? Did he really want to block Chang'an by himself? What was his intention of leaving Peach Mountain except for killing Ye Su?

Ning Que could not figure it out. But he knew that his will would be destroyed by the Abbey Dean if the confrontation continued, even though the Abbey Dean was doing nothing except standing there quietly. Or, maybe destroying his will was also one of the Abbey Dean's intentions. Since Ye Su was already dead, the most crucial moment had passed.

Ning Que made a move which he never thought he would do. He withdrew the arrow. With his action, the ice on his shoulder broke into pieces and the snow on his clothes fell down.

The Abbey Dean revealed praise in his eyes. But Ning Que looked indifferent.

Ye Su was dead. The Abbey Dean had achieved his most important goal.

Ning Que suffered a big defeat. If the confrontation or battle had to continue, he could only use this method to drive himself and Chang'an into a tight corner and then try to survive this desperate situation.

He put the iron bow on his back, leaving the gate of Chang'an unguarded.

The Abbey Dean could enter Chang'an if he wished to achieve more goals. But Ning Que didn't think that the Abbey Dean would take the risk after Ye Su died.

A few years ago in Chang'an, Ning Que destroyed the Abbey Dean's Ocean of Qi and Mountain of Snow with tens of thousands of knives. He was confident that he still could do the same at this moment.

He did not regret that he didn't shoot his arrow toward the East Sea last night, for he got distracted by the Abbey Dean. But at this point, he could focus on dealing with the Abbey Dean.

The Abbey Dean smiled at Ning Que and turned around, ready to leave.

Ning Que looked at his back and said, "I will figure out what you want to do."

The Abbey Dean didn't look back, and replied, "You know where to find me when you figure it out."



Ye Su was gone, but the wind and snow still went on.

Ning Que no longer sat on the city wall, for he needed to figure something out.

The unexpected decision Taoism made puzzled him, but he didn't feel frustrated. The process of history always spiralled up, and war never went off smoothly.

He walked down the wall and then wandered silently on the streets of Chang'an.

He went to the Wanyan Tower to see the statues. He went to South Gate Abbey and meditated in a Taoist hall paved with black stones. He did not go to Lin 40th Street but chose the Yanming Lake. He sat by the lake and looked at the lotus in the snow lake, looking like a cold statue and gradually covered with snow.

Back then, he grasped Fu Tao in the Wanyan Tower, grasped Taoism in South Gate Abbey, and figured out many truths by the Yanming Lake, including life and death and also things that were beyond life and death.

But at this point, he could not figure out the Abbey Dean's intention.

The Abbey Dean was the most powerful man of Taoism and also the biggest enemy of the Academy. The Headmaster had not been able to eliminate him. Besides, he was the father of Chen Pipi and the teacher of Ye Su. In theory, the Academy should know him very well, but Ning Que found that he did not know the man at all at this moment.

He couldn't even make a relatively true description of this man. He knew the Abbey Dean's original name and knew that he was a genius at cultivating Taoism, but didn't know his preferences, his views on the world or his spiritual tendency. Does the Abbey Dean want to be sanctified or does he just want to cultivate Taoism in peace?

He sat by the Yanming Lake for three days and three nights, but still had no clue. So he got up and left. The spot where he sat was quickly covered by snow.

The Headmaster and Sangsang went to the Divine Kingdom. Yan Se turned into ashes and was buried in the suburbs. The Eldest Brother was still out there, searching for Chen Pipi. The Second Brother was still fighting Buddhism in the west. The Senior Sister was killing people in the Wilderness. Chao Xiaoshu was waiting for his last moment at the small town.

He wandered around Chang'an, but could not find anyone who could enlighten him. Finally he went to a brothel, the House of Red Sleeves. In this brothel, he once wrote a well-known signature and had many experiences. More importantly, a person he respected lived here: Mistress Jian.

Walking to the penthouse of the House of Red Sleeves, he bowed to Mistress Jian and requested, "May I consult with you on something, Mistress Jian?"

Seeing his tired face, Mistress Jian suddenly said, "I want to see the Academy."

Ever since that spring rain, Ning Que had stayed in Chang'an, never stepping out of the city. Since the Academy was not in Chang'an, he had to leave the city to go there.

Ning Que went silent for a while and then said, "Okay."

The carriage left the House of Red Sleeves, passed through Vermilion Bird Avenue and left the city, heading for the south. It didn't take long for them to arrive at the Academy, pass through the plum bushes and withered peach trees and enter the Back Hill.

Walking in the Back Hill, Mistress Jian looked at the cliff yard and the small courtyard in the wood and listened to the sound of the waterfall. She looked quite solemn, but did not say a word the whole time.

Bypassing the waterfall and passing through the narrow stone wall, they came to the cliff of the Back Hill. Then they climbed up with difficulty along the steep mountain road, finally approaching the wisteria frame and the cliff cave.

The wisteria was planted by Sangsang, and the small building was built by all his brothers and sisters. Standing under the wisteria frame, Ning Que looked at the dried fruits of the wisteria and felt sad.

Mistress Jian walked to the cliff cave and looked around in the cave with the aid of the daylight. When she saw the words written on the stone wall, her eyes welled up with tears.

The words were written by Ke Haoran.

"This is the first time for me to step into Back Hill of the Academy." Mistress Jian turned around and walked to the cliff yard. Looking at Chang'an in the distance and the clouds in the sky, she sighed. "I thought I would never come here."

Ning Que didn't want to dig up the old stories of the elders he respected, so he kept silent.

Mistress Jian said, "In fact, I never liked the Headmaster."

Ning Que was puzzled. He thought that everyone would respect and love a person like the Headmaster. Why would Mistress Jian say this?

Mistress Jian turned around and said to him, "Because Youngest Uncle was taught by him."

This was true. Although they were brothers in name, actually Ke Haoran was the student of the Headmaster, only that he was too proud to admit so. Ke Haoran was heavily influenced by the Headmaster, at least in the respect of viewing the human world.

Mistress Jian vaguely understood what Mistress Jian meant.

"If not for the Headmaster, how could your Youngest Uncle be interested in the sky?" Mistress Jian looked at the sky and said, "The Academy always claims to look after the human world. But what have you done? Have you ever really cared about the human world? You always keep your heads up and think of triumphing the sky. But when did the sky ever offend you?"

What she said was very unreasonable, especially since she said it in front of the cliff cave. Back then, Ke Haoran honed his mind in this cave while the Headmaster was eating meat, drinking wine and cursing at the sky at the cliff yard. The Academy never treated its' battle with the sky as a street fight no matter whether its' view on the human world was right or not.

"He was happy with his black donkey and his sword. He was matchless in the human world, better than Lian Sheng and the Abbey Dean. He could live for another thousands of years if he wanted to. Then why did he die?"

Mistress Jian continued, "Because he was so arrogant that he wanted to fight against the sky. So Haotian killed him. He fought against the sky because he wanted the damn freedom. The Headmaster put that stupid idea into his head. He would not have died so early if not for the Headmaster. So all of this is the Headmaster's fault."

What she added was even more unreasonable. She just traced the reason from the conclusion and blamed the Headmaster for everything, but never considering Ke Haoran's own thoughts and choice in the whole matter.

Ning Que had wandered in Chang'an and meditated by the Yanming Lake for quite a long time to figure out the Abbey Dean's true intention, so he was already worn out. After hearing these unreasonable and irrelevant words, he thought that women were indeed all unreasonable.

After saying this, Mistress Jian left the cliff yard and walked down the cliff long the mountain road, totally ignoring Ning Que.

Ning Que was speechless and had no idea what happened. All of a sudden, he understood.

Of course What Mistress Jian said was totally unreasonable, just like when Sangsang left home and then left the human world, he also thought what she did was unreasonable. But being unreasonable was also being reasonable at some point.

In this way, Mistress Jian told him that, when he didn't understand the truth of something, he should ignore the matter, and just trace the underlying reason from the result.

Sangsang ruthlessly forsook Ning Que despite their mutual affections, and went back to the Divine Kingdom, which meant that she was still Haotian.

Nobody knew why the Abbey Dean killed Ye Su. But regardless of the reason, the consequence of Ye Su's death was that Taoism would be severely weakened, yet the New Stream would not necessarily be suppressed.

This puzzled the Academy the most. But according to Mistress Jian's logic, tracing the reason from the result, was actually a case in point. If the foundation of Taoism was shaken, Haotian would be weakened.

This was the result.

To approach the truth, Ning Que should not heed the connection between cause and effect, not think about the process between the beginning and the end and even not guess the intention of the Abbey Dean, and just focus on the result.

The Abbey Dean wanted to weaken Haotian. This sounded absurd and unreasonable. Just as unreasonable as what Mistress Jian said. But Ning Que knew that it was true.

He looked up in the sky and went silent.