This state duke who usually kept a low-key presence had unexpectedly made such a statement; some people started thinking of the matter from a new angle.
Yet, more people began to think deeply about the relationship between the Emperor and Jing Jiu.
The situation on Green Mountain was quite complicated that day, but the royal palace was still supporting Jing Jiu steadfastly; why?
Zhaoge City and even the imperial court of the Jing family had been under the influence of the Center Sect in the last six hundred years. It wasn't until last few decades that some sudden changes had occurred. First of all, there was a dispute about the inheritance of the throne; Jing Xin, whom was supported by the Center Sect, had been thwarted a few times, and in the end Jing Yao, whom was supported by the Green Mountain Sect, had been successfully appointed as the Crown Prince.
The entire Cultivation circle was well aware of when these changes started happening and of who was responsible for the changes.
The key figure for these happenings was none other than Jing Jiu.
Innumerable gazes fell on the cloud platform where the Center Sect was seated.
The Center Sect and the Green Mountain Sect had been confronting each other for many years, so the Center Sect would prefer the continuation of chaos at the Green Mountain Sect. The Immortal Bai wouldn't allow Yuan Qijing to let Jing Jiu leave so easily. The Kunlun Sect held a grudge against the Green Mountain Sect, so they would like to see a bloodbath among the people of Green Mountain. And all the other sects in the north would follow the lead of the Center Sect. Would this internal conflict of Green Mountain result in a war between the Cultivation sects in Chaotian?
Bai Zao lifted up her head and stole a glance at her mother from the corners of her eyes, intending to figure out what her mother was thinking at the moment.
The countenance enshrouded in a layer of fog couldn't be made out even by her own daughter.
Though it was the Immortal Bai's hope that Green Mountain would be engulfed in an internal turmoil, she was fully aware that it wouldn't happen that day.
If she hadn't come in person, the possibility of internal turmoil might be higher.
However, she was rather satisfied with the outcome already.
The rupture within Green Mountain grew deeper and wider; it would become a chasm someday and the two camps on both sides wouldn't be able to communicate with each other anymore.
This was the beginning of the decline of Green Mountain.
Who could predict that what the great grandmaster of the Foggy Island, Nan Qü, said at the West Ocean would happen to Jing Jiu?
As expected, all of those flying swords on the top of Tianguang Peak had suddenly drawn back soundlessly when all the gazes were fixed on the Immortal Bai.
Regardless of how intense the internal conflict of Green Mountain got and whether Jing Jiu was the sword devil or not, the Green Mountain disciples had no choice but to unite when facing the threat from the Center Sect.
Yuan Qijing took a hard look at Fang Jingtian.
Fang Jingtian knew that the decision had been made and nothing more he could request. It was already a victory for him to expel that sword devil out of Green Mountain. But…what about those two treasures?
Elder Mo Chi sighed after telling the disciples to take care of the still unconscious Bai Rujing. He walked out of the crowd and stammered to Jing Jiu, "Please…leave the…Inherited Heaven…Sword…behind."
Like most of the elders and disciples of Green Mountain, Mo Chi also believed that Jing Jiu was the sword devil; but he thought that Jing Jiu probably didn't even know who he was himself. So Mo Chi had nothing sinister against Jing Jiu, and yet he had to ask Jing Jiu about the Inherited Heaven Sword after he heard Jing Jiu telling Fang Jingtian that he couldn't keep him here on Green Mountain.
Fang Jingtian couldn't ask Jing Jiu about the sword, so Mo Chi thought that he should come out and inquire about it.
Gu Qing turned to Mo Chi and said in a calm and mild tone, "Elder Mo Chi, my Master only takes a brief rest outside the mountains."
Though he didn't state it in a more understandable way, what he meant was crystal clear.
Yuan Qijing wanted Jing Jiu to take a break outside Green Mountain, but it didn't mean that Jing Jiu was no longer the sect master of Green Mountain.
As a result, the Inherited Heaven Sword and the Seal of Underworld Emperor did not need to be handed over.
Mo Chi was taken aback for a moment, but he found what Gu Qing said made sense. He retreated into the crowd after sighing one more time.
Gu Qing turned around and handed the Sword of the Universe to Jing Jiu.
Zhao Layue looked at Gu Qing and said, "We take our leave first."
Staring at Zhao Layue, Fang Jingtian exclaimed sharply, "You're the peak master of Shenmo, but you are going to leave with this devil. Do you intend to betray our mountain gate?"
Zhao Layue retorted indifferently, "You and I are both the peak masters of Green Mountain. You don't have the qualification to tell me what to do."
If you want to command me, you have to get the Inherited Heaven Sword first.
And there is just no way for you to do that!
"Speaking of betrayal, I have known since my childhood that Green Mountain is where the Immortal Jing Yang is."
Looking at Fang Jingtian and then those Green Mountain disciples who had attempted to attack Jing Jiu with their flying swords, Zhao Layue said expressionlessly, "Hence, you people are the traitors of Green Mountain."
The ocean of clouds outside Tianguang Peak was usually higher and flatter than those on other peaks; it was probably more suitable for a certain person to step on it.
The ocean of clouds had formed a great many waves and then countless smaller patches after the sword wills of the Immortal Tai Lu stretched from heaven to earth first and then Fang Jingtian's Old Sword blocked the sky.
Through those patches of clouds, one could see the sceneries of Green Mountain clearly.
The Sword-Washing Stream was meandering among the peaks, heading toward the outside of the mountains.
It was the path leading away from Green Mountain.
Jing Jiu sat on the Sword of the Universe.
He chose to sit on the sword even though this behavior had been pointed out by Fang Jingtian.
A blood-red line appeared in the sky as the Thoughtless Sword left Zhao Layue, heading toward Shenmo Peak.
In the next moment, the forbidding formation was activated on Shenmo Peak, the sword wills engulfing the entire peak there.
Having done so, Zhao Layue sat down on the Sword of the Universe. She did so in a proficient manner, and she sat on the spot similar to that on the bamboo chair.
Yuan Qü took out the strange gray sword he had obtained not long ago, but he found it hard to sit on, so he had no choice but to stand on it.
The two flying swords left the top of Tianguang Peak, heading toward the blue sky and white clouds, at a casual and leisurely pace.
It couldn't be considered as an expulsion.
It was a departure.
Gu Qing took two steps toward the edge of the cliff and waved his hand a few times to bid his farewell.
In the crowd on the peak top, Young Sister Yushan waved her hand unnoticeably.
Some young disciples of Green Mountain didn't dare do anything save for bidding their farewells in their minds.
Mei Li and Lin Wuzhi eyed each other, both of them feeling somewhat sentimental.
Chen Youtian suddenly felt a bit empty in his heart; it seemed that something was missing in there. Later, he suddenly realized that the great grandmaster of his peak had also left Green Mountain in Jing Jiu's arms.
Zhuo Rusui was the only one who paid attention to a different thing. Looking at the sword on which Yuan Qü stood, he commented while stroking his chin, "It's quite remarkable."
The two flying swords were heading toward the outside of Green Mountain. It didn't take long for them to turn into two dark specks though they didn't travel very fast.
Seeing the scene in the distance, Fang Jingtian remained silent.
He had prepared for this for so many years and provided solid evidence, so why did he still end up with such a result?
"You can't understand why the Immortal Taiping has always failed to defeat him?"
The Young Zen Master went on, "In addition to what the Immortal Jing Yang said earlier, I think there is another important reason for it."
It seemed that he talked to Fang Jingtian, but in fact, he was talking to the Green Mountain disciples and even all of those present.
"The Immortal Taiping is unmatched in intelligence and calculating ability, and has a great many supporters; but the Immortal Jing Yang has few supporters, and he doesn't even have any friends. Why hasn't he truly lost before? It's because the supporters of the Immortal Taiping are all his disciples and subordinates, and what the Immortal Jing Yang has are those who agree with his ideal, partners on the path toward heaven."
The Young Zen Master continued, "It's the path toward heaven, and the path is for all. That is why the whole world is rooting for him."
"Even if he is Young Senior Master Jing Yang, it's still rather absurd to apply the saying 'serving the world' to him," Fang Jingtian said in a mocking tone, his white eyebrows ruffling slightly.
It was a known fact that the Immortal Jing Yang paid no attention to the outside affairs; and he was preoccupied with cultivating behind closed doors and the matter of ascension.
He didn't care about what had happened in the world, and it seemed that he didn't even care about what had happened to the Green Mountain Sect, which was the very reason why the juniors of Green Mountain had so many complaints about him.
How could such a person be said to serve the world?
"Any word uttered by the Immortal Taiping and the Immortal Jing Yang is like a thunder, any sword wielded by them is enough to disturb heaven and earth, and a thought by them will affect the lives of tens of thousands of people."
The Young Zen Master went on, "The likes of them would do the people of the world a great favor if they didn't do anything at all."
The voice of the Young Zen Master echoed in the midst of the mountain peaks; the listeners were believed to remember what he had just said for a long time to come.
It was believed that the Cultivation circle would remember the scene in which the two flying swords travelled slowly away from the peaks of Green Mountain for a great many years.
Sitting on the Sword of the Universe, Jing Jiu didn't even pay any attention to the universe, his white cloth ruffling slightly.
A sensation of loneliness snuck up naturally.
He looked like a real fairy man.
Reflecting on this scene and what the Young Zen Master had said, many disciples of Green Mountain and the Cultivation practitioners of other sects had suddenly wavered in their opinions about Jing Jiu.
Was he truly the Immortal Jing Yang?
The Drifter was actually the true lonely person on the top of Tianguang Peak at the moment, if he could be considered a human being.
Nobody paid any attention to him after he finished relating the statements of the Immortal Taiping.
He had been drifting in midair alone when the swords flew up into the sky and the Young Zen Master said those moving words; no one had even taken a glimpse at him.
He felt a bit anxious, as he thought the result weren't in accordance with the plan.
According to the plan, Jing Jiu should have been locked in the Sword Jail, and the personal disciple of his Master would take over inheritance of Green Mountain.
If that were the outcome, he would be protected by Green Mountain, and he wouldn't be in the situation where he was paid no attention, as if he were a dead person.
Well, he was a member of the royal family of the Underworld and the personal disciple of the Immortal Taiping, so his end had already been determined. A letter, after being opened up and read, would be forgotten in a pile of papers, or thrown into a garbage basket, or torn to shreds; of course, the worst result was to be burned into a puff of green smoke.
It was obvious that the Drifter didn't have the self-consciousness of a letter.
"Hand this devil child to the One-Cottage House," Bu Qiuxiao said to Yuan Qijing solemnly as he walked to the edge of the cloud platform.
He had prepared the Dragon-Tail Inkstone for striking Jing Jiu earlier; but he hesitated when the Young Zen Master made the statement.
Though he didn't strike earlier, he was determined not to let this devil child of the Underworld escape.
"Regardless of whether he will betray the Underworld and join the orthodox sect, this is the territory of Green Mountain," Fang Jingtian said to Bu Qiuxiao indifferently.
If the Drifter were the personal disciple of the Immortal Taiping, he would be his Young Brother; so it would be impossible for him to let the One-Cottage House take the Drifter away.
The violent wind and snow had suddenly enshrouded the top of Tianguang Peak.
The cold intent acted like the sword will, piercing through the bones.
A moment later, the wind and snow stopped just as suddenly. The ice cube the size of five square foot appeared on the ground, giving off a blue glow, resembling a large blue gemstone.
The Drifter was frozen inside the cube, opening his mouth wide-eyed; his countenance looked awfully horrified.
Yuan Qijing was in a terrible mood today. When he struck in great anger, who could possibly resist him?
"The event has happened on Green Mountain; so he will naturally be imprisoned in the Sword Jail of Green Mountain," he said to Bu Qiuxiao.
Bu Qiuxiao frowned.
After the death of the Old Dragon, the Fiend Prison had lost its former formidability, and the Sword Jail of Green Mountain had become the most fortified place in the orthodox Cultivation circle.
Normally it would be safe to lock this member of the royal family of the Underworld in the Sword Jail; but…the Sword Jail had had a dishonorable precedent recently.
Thinking of this, he turned around and shot a glance at one of his students.
Liu Shisui didn't notice his Teacher watching him at the moment. He was staring at the ocean of clouds, wordless and at a loss, looking rather pitiful.
Bu Qiuxiao felt a bit sympathetic, and said after sighing, "You can go if you want to."
Liu Shisui came back to his senses after the initial bafflement, and felt overjoyed.
Dozens of disciples of Green Mountain were gathered; most of them were the disciples of Liangwang Peak.
Lei Yijing, Yao Songshan and other disciples stared at those who held different opinion from theirs; nobody was willing to back down by moving away their gazes.
Guo Nanshan didn't pay any attention to them. He walked to the side of Zhuo Rusui and asked while looking at the outside of Green Mountain, "What are your thoughts?"
"I don't have a clear thought on it right now," Zhuo Rusui returned.
He was not certain whether Jing Jiu was the Grandmaster Jing Yang or the rumored sword devil.
"What do you intend to do then?" asked Guo Nanshan.
After a moment of pause, Zhuo Rusui said, "I don't know."
"Do you want to go?" Guo Nanshan pressed.
Zhuo Rusui dropped his line of sight and said with drooped eyelids, "In fact…it's hard to say whether I want to go or not; but I'm used to being with them."
"You go then," said Guo Nanshan after a sigh.
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