"Do you remember that year's Plum Meeting?"
Guo Nanshan said while looking at You Siluo, "We, a bunch of young disciples, sat by the Star Lake and talked all night by the bonfire."
Recalling the fragrant wine smell and the visions they talked about that night, You Siluo let out a smile; but soon his smile faded away when he thought of the death of Cultivationist Luo Huainan.
The Cultivation tournament of that year's Plum Meeting was very intense, and the final results had been determined only at the very end.
The disciples of the Green Mountain Sect, the Center Sect, the Water-Moon Nunnery, the Great Marsh, and various other sects sat by the lake, taking a rest.
Somebody barbecued a sheep and produced a jar of wine.
That jar was a magic treasure, so the wine in it couldn't be completely consumed no matter how many people drank from it.
It was probably because of the tiredness, or the friendship formed during the battles, that they had intentionally forgotten the difference and hostility between the Cultivation sects.
They started eating the meat and drinking the wine. Since they didn't use their zhenyuan, they became drunk pretty soon, and then spoke with each other truthfully.
From that night on, these young disciples had a common goal: to lead the entire Cultivation world, and even the whole human race, toward better future.
To achieve this, they had been cultivating diligently, all the while looking for more partners with the same idea. There were more and more of their followers at this point.
You Siluo said sentimentally, "I didn't realize that you people have done so much during my time behind closed doors."
"The real threat for the human race is the Snowy Kingdom. Even though there will be no significant event within one hundred years according to the prediction of Master Broadsword King, what about one hundred years after that?" Guo Nanshan stated.
If they were common folk, they would have no need to worry about what would happen to the world one hundred years later, even if it were ultimately a catastrophe.
Yet, a Cultivation practitioner had no choice but to consider it. It was because they lived longer in this world, and moreover, they were a bunch of young Cultivation practitioners who were also warm-hearted and full of visions for a better future.
You Siluo said, "I remember what the Cultivationist Bai Zao said, that the human race should solve the problems within first if we want to overcome the threats from the outside."
"That's right. The deviant sects are in decline, so the sole problem for the human race right now is the Old Ones right now."
Guo Nanshan continued, "The Emperor wanted to enter the Cold Mountain and wipe out the deviant sects twenty years ago; but the debates went on nonstop in the imperial court, and State Duke Ding, who supported the invasion the most had been killed by the assassins of the Old Ones. This is just an example of what has happened in the last twenty or thirty years in Chaotian."
You Siluo said, "It's very difficult to wipe out the Old Ones; otherwise, the masters would have done it long time ago."
"That's correct," Guo Nanshan said. "It's because the Old Ones are not a sect, so it's hard to find their headquarters, or maybe they don't even have one, since an assassination organization doesn't need it. To wipe out the Old Ones, we have to know information about their members, and then we can act quickly enough to wipe them out. If not, the Cultivation world will have a disaster looming in its future."
The Old Ones were very mysterious.
Everybody knew that the Old Ones must have moles in various sects, such as the elder of the Center Sect in the Yuanying State, Wei Chenzi, who had died a few years ago.
The problem was that nobody knew exactly who those people were.
You Siluo remained silent for a while before saying, "So we need a mole in their organization…"
"That's right," Guo Nanshan said while gazing at his eyes. "So we chose Liu Shisui for the role."
You Siluo asked, "But, how could you send him to the Old Ones?"
"We learned of some clues and had a few suspects." Jian Ruyun got up and told him the story in details, "That year when we were at Muddy River to purge the demon, we found the problem with the Dace Devil. The Devil Pill inside the Dace Devil was attached to a method that concealed the devil energy, and this was alluring for any young Cultivation practitioner. After some discussions, we had made a plan that night to let Liu Shisui take the Devil Pill."
You Siluo asked with frowned brows, "Who made the plan?"
Ma Hua, who sat in a dark corner, raised his hand. Seeing the cold and solemn countenance displayed by his Second Big Brother, Ma Hua felt uneasy, so he explained hurriedly, "Cultivationist Tong Yan had made twenty seven tentative plans in advance, and the circumstance was fitting for one of the plans. And it was requested by Young Brother Liu himself. We didn't force him to accept the plan."
Guo Nanshan nodded in confirmation, and added, "What had happened later was just as we expected. Young Brother Liu was taken away by the Old Ones one year after his meridians were broken off and he had been expelled from the Green Mountain. Before that event had happened, everything went well; and we believed he would be able to have a chance to have his hands on the list of the top members of the Old Ones in twenty years."
You Siluo asked, with his brows still furrowed, "How could that happen?"
"We don't understand why Young Brother Liu actually joined the Old Ones and did such evil either."
After a moment of silence, Guo Nanshan continued, "It was my fault for letting it happen. I will kill Liu Shisui with my own hands."
On a cliff facing the ocean in the deep end of the Cloud Platform…
Liu Shisui stood on the cliff, looking at an ocean illuminated by starlight, a calm expression showing on his face, as nobody could see him from any direction.
He had heard the name of the Old Ones the first time when he came to the Sword-Washing Stream.
At the time, he had just entered the inner gate, and Jing Jiu would remain lazy at the South-Pine Pavilion for another year.
Big Brother Gu Han appreciated him very much, and told him many things about the Cultivation world and the sufferings of the human race in history.
Many of these sufferings had something to do with the Old Ones.
The officials in the imperial court were assassinated because of the power struggles; the orthodox Cultivation practitioners were killed cruelly because of the retaliation; many innocent businessmen died at their hands because of the money.
And in the process of these assassinations and killings, many more innocent common folk were killed tragically.
The Old Ones might also have had collaborations with the devil men of the Underworld.
Such an evil organization shouldn't have existed.
Now that it had already existed, what they could do was wipe it out.
This was something everyone who loved life and this world should do.
Liangwang Peak chose Liu Shisui as the candidate to go to the Old Ones, because he had a special talent in Cultivation, and he had just entered the inner gate, a sort of blank slate, meaning he would win the trust from the Old Ones more easily.
Liu Shisui was very nervous about the task, but also proud…though, mostly, he felt the weight of the responsibility.
After he had swallowed the Devil Pill at the bottom of Muddy River, he soon developed high fever, drawing the suspicion of many.
From that day on, he experienced much suffering: He was discarded by his master Bai Rujing, suspected and scolded by his colleagues, and even tortured by Shangde Peak.
He had lived like a ghost on Tianguang Peak for three years, but he wasn't pained so much, because he felt at peace deep inside.
It was only that he felt apologetic toward Jing Jiu.
At the Sword Trial on Green Mountain, Jing Jiu wounded Ma Hua and Gu Han, and even broke Big Brother Nanshan's sword; it was obviously to avenge him.
Every time he thought of these matters, Liu Shisui felt a bit displeased, and a bit pleased at the same time…until now.
The sound of waves came from the ocean below, its surface reflecting a silvery shimmer.
The smile on his face faded away.
He was prepared to spend twenty or thirty years in the Old Ones to gain their trust.
Yet, the death of Luo Huainan had shortened the time span.
His status in the Old Ones had improved very quickly, so he could get hold of some of the high-level information.
Now he had to make a choice.
Should he stay in the Old Ones for a few more years to obtain more information, such as the evidence of the collaboration between the Old Ones and the Underworld, or should he leave the Old Ones before he was suspected?
He had made up his mind that night. He chose the former, because he had many important questions that he hadn't gotten answers to.
Did the Godly Swordsman of West Ocean know about the Old Ones? Who was this Xiwang Sun?
It was rumored that Xiwang Sun and the Godly Swordsman of West Ocean were Brothers, and Xiwang Sun mentioned this fact as well. It was also confirmed by Xiwang Sun's status and power in the West Ocean Sword Sect.
But, Xiwang Sun suddenly appeared merely over ten years ago. He hadn't been with the West Ocean Sword Sect the entire time.
The Dace Devil in Muddy River was Xiwang Sun's scheme, and he had many similar schemes somewhere else. How did he control those demon monsters?
It was rumored that these horrifying demon monsters were sent to Chaotian through the Large Whirlpool by the Underworld.
As such, would Xiwang Sun's origin have something to do with the Underworld?
Why did Xiwang Sun trust him so much?
Looking at the ocean shone by the starlight, Liu Shisui felt his body was getting colder.
Over the years when he was with the Old Ones, he always felt that someone had been watching him all the time, paying attention to his every step silently.
Who are you?
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