There was another world above the sky.
The people in Chaotian had had many conjectures about that world; but the interest had gradually faded away as time passed.
Only one person could ascend successfully in one thousand years. Even though some people had had the aspiration for that world, how long could they sustain it?
Since they had no chance of ascending to that world, it was meaningless to care about that world, even though it was a fairy realm.
Yet, for someone like Zhao Layue, a genius in Cultivation with ascension as their final goal, they would tend to contemplate what that world was like.
This was the very reason why she couldn't understand the Immortal Taiping.
The goal of Cultivation was longevity and ascension; but why would someone who had unparalleled talent in Cultivation have fixed his attention on this world?
"He has a strong sense of crisis, thinking that that world is full of competitions and risks. He also has a strong sense of responsibility, thinking that he is responsible for helping the whole world move forward. As such, his goal is different from other Cultivation practitioners."
Jing Jiu continued, "He wants to break the rules of this world and lead all the Cultivation practitioners in leaving this world."
A magnificent and grand vista appeared in Zhao Layue's mind. After she heard the shocking idea, she remained silent for a long while before asking in a weak voice, "Does it mean all the practitioners will ascend?"
"That's right. Superficially speaking, what he advocates is similar to the belief of the Zen sects, which is that everyone can become the Buddha."
Jing Jiu continued, "He was the Chief Monk at the Fruit Formation Temple for a while, so he had learned a great deal from the Buddhist scripts and is influenced by their ideas."
Zhao Layue offered, "Do you think…his idea is impossible to achieve?"
"I don't know," Jing Jiu replied honestly. "But I don't like what he will do to realize his ideal."
He had been staying behind closed doors on both Shangde Peak and Shenmo Peak. Yet, Liu Ci, Yuan Qijing, and Ada knew that he was not afraid of killing people.
He had also seen Lian Sanyue kill people.
But he had never seen the way his Big Brother killed people.
In order to fulfill his ideal, Taiping would kill anybody, including his own people.
The floods were everywhere.
His emperor brother had died.
The Young Zen Master was forced to reincarnate.
That sword hid here and there on Green Mountain like a pathetic monkey.
More importantly, he didn't agree with his Big Brother's idea.
The relationship between the Cultivation practitioners and mortals had never been the one between the shepherds and sheep.
He had told Zhao Layue about this back in Zhaoge City.
Zhao Layue might have recalled that statement, as she said, "You're right."
This meant that she had reached a conclusion.
From this moment on, they had no need to discuss the topic further.
All of a sudden, they heard a singing from the opposite cliff on Qingrong Peak.
The expression changed slightly on Jing Jiu's face. He was about to get up and leave, but decided to stay.
The singing sounded a bit grief-stricken.
The scene could be vaguely seen amid the clouds and fog.
Nan Wang stood under that flowering tree, drinking alcohol.
She had just started drinking, so she was not drunk yet.
Jing Jiu suddenly remarked, "She would have become Liu Ci's Cultivation partner if the accident hadn't happened back then."
"What happened?" she pressed, feeling a little surprised.
Jing Jiu said, "She didn't like him."
Zhao Layue thought that Jing Jiu must be that accident. "What happened afterwards?" she pressed again.
Jing Jiu said, "It's truly boring."
"Yeah," Zhao Layue said, after some thought.
Shangde Peak was covered with thick snow.
The sound of coughing could be heard once in a while in the manor cave.
The accumulated snow on the cliffs shook along with the coughing, small avalanches began.
Chi Yan pulled back his sight from the stump of his broken arm and looked at the manor cave, his eyes full of worry.
Nan Qü's sword was indeed formidable. One of his arms was sliced off before he had a chance to resist it, and Duan Liantian died right away.
The Master Sword Justice was the direct target of Nan Qü's sneak attack. And he had sparred once with Nan Qü after being wounded; so it was obvious that he had been injured severely.
As the coughing had suddenly stopped, Yuan Qijing walked out of the manor cave.
Chi Yan was startled, wondering where he was headed with his injured body.
Yuan Qijing waved his hand, telling him not to say anything, and left Shangde Peak after stepping onto the Three-Foot Sword.
The fog enshrouding the stone beam bridging Shiyue Peak and Xilai Peak was as thick as before, but the figure of the Dark Phoenix was nowhere to be found.
The clouds and fog had suddenly dispersed, as Yuan Qijing landed on the stone beam along with the snowflakes.
Fang Jingtian walked out from the deep part of the fog.
Yuan Qijing stared at him quietly, saying nothing.
Fang Jingtian didn't say anything either, his white brows fluttering.
Yuan Qijing still stared at him quietly, and then shook his head.
Fang Jingtian had finally nodded his head after a long silence.
From this moment on, he would stay behind closed doors. And he was not allowed to come out without permission.
There was a small village on the outskirts of Nanhua City.
Nothing was special about this village. Like all the other small villages, one could always see a bunch of old men chit chatting while bathing in the sun at the entrance to the village.
As the sun was setting to the horizon, an old man with sparse hair and a red nose staggered back to his own small courtyard with the aid of a cane.
A rooster stood on the grinding stone in the courtyard. His long tail didn't look so eerie and formidable after being damaged; it appeared rather absurd.
Yin San pushed open the gate and walked in. He squinted to look at the setting sun, as he said, "Another day has passed."
The Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect rubbed his nose as he said, "Immortal…I need a proper resolution for the matter."
The reason Yin San could escape from the West Ocean unharmed was because the Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect had played an essential role, though those swordsmen of Green Mountain who couldn't restrain themselves offered some help.
The Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect had blocked a sword from the Godly Swordsman of West Ocean, and sparred with the Dragon-Tail Inkstone of the One-Cottage House, demonstrating his profound Cultivation state.
Like the white cat on the top of Shenmo Peak, he thought he was qualified to demand something now.
Yin San patted on his shoulder, as he said, "I'll find an opportunity to avenge you."
The nose of the Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect grew even redder, meaning he was exceedingly furious right now.
"The Mysterious Dark Sect is extinct already. What can revenge do for me?"
Yin San didn't pay any more attention to him. He walked to the front of the grinding stone and checked the tail of the rooster, saying, "It'll recover."
The rooster spoke in a human voice, "Immortal, my life board is in that guy's hands. I always feel ill at ease no matter what he is."
Yin San comforted him by saying, "No need to be afraid. He didn't do you any harm this time, and he won't do anything to you later."
A horse-drawn carriage arrived in front of the small courtyard.
A lovely boy who looked like a jade figurine was brought in.
The Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect knew that this should be a letter, asking, "What has happened this time?"
The boy was no more than three or four years old, his eyes clean and naïve and quite adorable.
"This is a blank paper."
Rubbing the head of the boy, Yin San went on with a small smile, "I'll teach you as much as I can; you'll be someone with great prowess four years from now."
The Great Grandmaster of the Mysterious Dark Sect couldn't stand the way he spoke, so he turned around and headed for the kitchen.
As he came to the side of the stove, he suddenly fell silent after seeing the pig legs in the boiling soup.
No matter whether it was a piece of wood or a pig leg, they would fall apart after being boiled long enough.
More and more rotten marks were seen on the Immortal's body; his body could crumble at any time.
What would he plan to do without the First Child Sword?
Jing Jiu left Shenmo Peak and went to the Sword Jail.
He arrived at that dry and clean grand hall after passing through the passage filled with bloody and filthy energies. From there, he looked at that gloomier passageway.
That cell was located at the end of the passageway, where the Snow Girl was imprisoned.
The sword wills set up by him were everywhere in the passageway; they were formidable and complicated, so no one could dismantle them.
The Snow Girl sensed his approach, and spun her head to look at the door of the cell.
Jing Jiu and the Snow Girl eyed each other through the door enshrouded by the sword wills, neither of them speaking.
The winds came in from two places. The wind from the well of Shangde Peak was a bit cold, and the wind from the hermit peaks was a little warm. The winds hurled up the tiny dusts, drifting between their lines of sight.
After a long while, Jing Jiu turned around to leave.
In the cell, the Snow Girl drew back her line of sight, continuing to look at that patch of snowy mountains and the lonely peak.
They were her territory, as beautiful as any in her eyes.
Jing Jiu suddenly halted his steps, and asked, "About that chair…if you think it's too hard, do you want me to replace it with another one for you?"
The Snow Girl gurgled twice. The first gurgle meant that she didn't think it was hard; the second meant that she didn't want it to be replaced.
There was a gate at the end of the Sword Jail; there were many layers of vicious fog outside the gate; and there were a great many peaks on the other side of the fog.
Those peaks were the rumored hermit peaks of Green Mountain.
In addition to those elders waiting to die here, there were a few swordsmen of various peaks who wished to break through Cultivation states and incarcerated themselves here voluntarily.
There existed another passage that could lead to the outside of the hermit peaks. Liu Shisui had used the passage last time.
However, apart from Jing Jiu, Liu Ci, Yuan Qijing and the Dead Dog, nobody knew about it; Liu Ada didn't even know about it.
Besides Tianguang Peak, nowhere else could the hermit peaks be seen in this world. It was not because they were enshrouded in the clouds and fog, but because of the Sword Formation of Green Mountain.
Jing Jiu took a look at one of the hermit peaks as he passed by it.
It was because Fang Jingtian was behind closed doors there.
It didn't take long before Jing Jiu arrived in front of a peak. He ascended on a cloud and found that manor cave. After taking a look at the emerald on the cliff, he pushed open the door and walked in.
Tong Yan lifted his head, feeling a bit surprised to see him.
To hide a person on Green Mountain without any knowledge from the Center Sect, the hermit peaks were the best place for it.
"Do you have anything for me?" asked Jing Jiu.
Tong Yan put the Go pieces in his hand back down on the table, saying, "I don't understand what you mean."
He understood that he had to pay a price for joining the Green Mountain, which was the so-called "joining-in present"; but, wasn't the Green Sky Mirror good enough?
"I want the First Child Sword," said Jing Jiu.
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