Yuan Qü went to Shangde Peak. On his way to the top of the peak, he found enough time to speak with Young Sister Yushan. He told her about the experiences they had on the outskirts of Cloudy Town briefly; Yushan felt truly aspired by the life Yuan Qü and the others were living. When she heard that the Immortal Tan had gone to Cloudy Town in person and invited Jing Jiu to be the sect master of Center Sect, she couldn't help but cry out many times in surprise.
As Yuan Qü arrived in that extremely cold manor cave atop the peak, he knelt down before Yuan Qijing and knocked his head a few times on the ground. After he answered Yuan Qijing's questions in as much detail as he could, he stood up, rubbed his back a few times, and then jumped in the well.
He landed at the bottom of the well with the sunlight while standing on the slightly curved flying sword. He knelt down before the Dead Dog and knocked his head on the ground many times, then heading toward the deep part of the Sword Jail.
Yuan Qü came to the hermit peaks where the sky was as blue as a ceramic ware and as beautiful as an illusionary realm, and passed the fields filled with flowers. Finally, he found the manor cave where Tong Yan resided.
"There is a formation outside the cave, but it has lost its effect a long time ago; why didn't you get out? However, I'm glad that you are still here. I was worried that the Sect Master might have miscalculated, and I'll be in trouble if you were killed by the Drifter."
Yuan Qü continued, "I didn't want to see a pile of white bones when I got here. Though I'm not afraid of seeing a dead man, It doesn't feel so good to see a dead acquaintance."
Tong Yan opened his eyes, and looked at him quietly for a while, saying, "I heard that Liu Shisui was a talkative person."
"I'm not learning it from Big Brother Shisui," said Yuan Qü. "What you don't know is that we are all talkative, including Zhuo Rusui; but both the Sect Master and my Master don't like talking so much, so we have to restrain ourselves…"
Tong Yan raised his hand to interrupt him before asking, "I'm healing my injury right now. What do you want from me?"
"The Sect Master asks if you want to get out of here," said Yuan Qü.
Tong Yan returned, "It's quite quiet here. No need for that."
Yuan Qü continued, "The Sect Master has many things he wants to ask you regarding the Center Sect. You think about them carefully and then write the answers down on paper, and I'll come to pick it up in a few days."
Having said this, he took out a few pieces of paper from inside his chest.
There were two or three questions on each paper, and there was a space between each question, which should be the spot for Tong Yan to write his answers.
After taking the papers, Tong Yan had the same feeling as Su Ziye: "How come someone like me…has become an advisor of Shenmo Peak?" Yet, unlike Su Ziye, he didn't know what had happened during the Grand Ceremony of inaugurating the sect master of Green Mountain and if Jing Jiu was probably the Immortal Jing Yang, which is why he felt more indignant.
Yuan Qü went to Yunxing Peak after leaving Shangde Peak.
As a disciple ranked second-last on Shenmo Peak, Yuan Qü only had one young brother; so he had thought that he should try his best to take care of this young brother.
This youngest brother who was still on Green Mountain had been forgotten by others, and it took a long time for them to remember him, which made Yuan Qü feel remorseful.
The clouds were drifting about everywhere on Yunxing Peak, but the clouds here were full of sword wills, unlike the mild and gentle clouds in Cloudy Town.
Though Yuan Qü had a high Cultivation state now, he still felt it hard to climb the peak, especially when the elevation got higher. His eyes were always assaulted by the sword will, so the tears couldn't help running down.
The higher he climbed, the more tears that came out and the redder his eyes became. His remorse toward his Young Brother had gradually turned into complaints.
Why did he climb so high up?
He reached a place that was not far from the top of the peak, where the iron eagles were circling in the air. Yuan Qü rubbed his eyes a few times, and had, finally, found his Young Brother.
Ping Yongjia was sitting in the grotto…soundly asleep.
It was evident that he was not cultivating but sleeping at the moment, because his legs were not crossed anymore. He leaned against the cliff wall with his eyes closed, his eyelids staying still, his face flush. A faint snore could be vaguely heard.
It was almost a miracle that he could sleep so soundly amid the formidable and dreadful sword wills, Yuan Qü thought as he looked at his Young Brother's face, feeling impressed as well as admiring.
Now that Ping Yongjia was safe, they should wait for him to wake up by himself according to Jing Jiu's command.
Yuan Qü descended Yunxing Peak, and went to Shenmo Peak.
The forbidding formation of Shenmo Peak was activated, so he couldn't get to the top of the peak without the Thoughtless Sword. He met the monkeys at the foot of the peak, exchanging some information with them by uttering many "ah". After learning that nothing had happened to the peak, he was on his way back to Scenery Garden.
By the time he got back in Cloudy Town, the flowers on the trees looked wilted after being blown by the wind of the early summer; the stream looked a bit dull; but Scenery Garden was still as chilly as before.
It was because a large blue ice cube was added in the middle of the courtyard, exuding an extremely cold intent.
Frozen in the ice cube, the Drifter opened his eyes wide, looking at the outside faces and objects distorted by the sunlight beaming through the ice, wondering why he chose to leave this place if he had known that he would come back here sooner or later.
It had always been hard to gather all the peak masters in the past for the Green Mountain Meetings; it was even worse this year.
Yuan Qijing didn't attend as usual; nobody came from Tianguang Peak, of course; Nan Wang didn't attend because she claimed that she was behind closed doors. The poor Chen Youtian was sent by Fang Jingtian to the West Ocean again because of the White Ghost. Zhao Layue was in Cloudy Town. There were only four people in the grand hall of Xilai Peak, among them being Chi Yan, merely a representative of Shangde Peak.
"How are we going to punish the Gu Clan and the Precious-Tree House?" said the peak master of Yunxing, Fu Wang.
The Immortal Guangyuan showed an imperturbable countenance, which looked pretty much like the Immortal Tan, the sect master of the Center Sect. "I don't think it's appropriate," he said, his tone flat without any emotional fluctuation.
Shiyue Peak was responsible for the distribution of the resources on Green Mountain. If the Immortal Guangyuan insisted on his own opinion, it was truly inappropriate and unjust for Green Mountain to do anything to the Precious-Tree House and the Gu Clan.
Fu Wang said, "But, what Shenmo Peak did is truly outrageous. We must punish them harshly."
Fang Jingtian shot Chi Yan a glance before asking, "What is Shangde Peak's opinion?"
"Jian Ruyun believes that the killings of the members of his clan and the Ma Clan were carried out by the people in Cloudy Town."
Chi Yan said expressionlessly, "But his claim can't be substantiated. I tell him to stop meddling in this matter."
"Not substantiated?" It was natural for Fu Wang, as the peak master of Yunxing, to speak for Jian Ruyun who hailed from Yunxing Peak. He exclaimed while staring at Chi Yan, "Why did Zhao Layue's Thoughtless Sword show up outside Shangzhou City when that deviant swordsman was almost captured?"
Chi Yan had no intention of backing down; he retorted while staring back icily, "Guo Nanshan told us clearly that Zhao Layue went there with him; why do you still doubt it?"
The Immortal Guangyuan signaled for them to stop arguing about it; he turned to Fang Jingtian, "The most important issue is why the Immortal Tan visited Cloudy Town."
Fang Jingtian commented lightly, "Do you think he will actually join Cloud-Dream Mountain? What he is doing is the trick of increasing his own value with the support of our enemy."
The Immortal Guangyuan said, "What if he joined them for real? It's you people who have expelled him from Green Mountain; so the act can't be counted as betraying the mountain gate."
Fang Jingtian understood what he meant, but he said expressionlessly, "Then we have to halt any further action on our part. As long as those people behave themselves, nothing will happen to them again."
Soon enough, Jing Jiu and his group had left Green Mountain for a year.
The snowflakes were drifting in the air, and New Year's Day was near. Cloudy Town was as crowded as ever, but nobody could be spotted outside the patch of fog.
Some Cultivation practitioners were still staying behind in the town with a sliver of hope, looking at the patch of fog blankly in the distance.
They were not concerned about celebrating the New Year, and they had no need to accompany their family members during the festival. As a result, the restaurants were busy serving hotpots.
Though the Cultivation practitioners were not concerned about the New Year, it didn't mean that they were not going to commemorate it.
Maintaining the relationship between the Cultivation sects was no different from that between the clans in the human world in essence; it required visiting each other and giving gifts to sustain the relationship.
As a leader of the orthodox sects, the Green Mountain Sect was the receiver of the gifts. According to the regular custom, the various sects sent their new year's gifts to Green Mountain one after the other; the sects in the south were sending the gifts with an important figure leading the delegation. As usual, they didn't stay on Green Mountain for too long; and they departed after sitting on Xilai Peak for a short while.
It was interesting to note that these Cultivation sects didn't leave right away this year. They would stop in Cloudy Town for a while on their way back home, no matter whether they passed through the town on their way home or not.
A great many cases and personal cards were piled up in front of that perennial flowering tree. By now people realized that these sects had left a new year's gift for that person in Scenery Garden. The gifts left by the Hanging-Bell Sect, the Mirror Sect and the Great Marsh for Scenery Garden were especially valuable, at least as valuable as the gifts given to the Green Mountain Sect. Soon after, the shocking news came from Zhaoge City that the Pure Heaven Bureau had decided to allocate a third of the resources assigned to the Green Mountain Sect to Scenery Garden next year…And the bureau would continue doing so until the Plum Meeting four years later.
The attitudes of the imperial court and these Cultivation sects were evident, meaning that the attempt of suppressing the Gu Clan and the Precious-Tree House on the part of some people at the Green Mountain Sect was thwarted.
Scenery Garden had a special status among many people.
There were many clouds on Cloud-Dream Mountain, and the sceneries here were much better than those in Scenery Garden.
At the edge of the platform on the cliff, a large tree protruded out; its leaves were gold in color all year long. It was beautiful and remarkable.
"The people on Green Mountain have a clear mind after all," said the Immortal Tan as he walked to the edge of the cliff, watching the ocean of clouds in the south.
The Immortal Bai came to his side, saying, "Regardless of whether he is Jing Yang or the All in One, if he could come to Cloud-Dream Mountain, it would be the best result; but you and I have anticipated that it's an impossible thing. He didn't leave Green Mountain for his own safety; he did it to avoid the internal conflict of Green Mountain; and Taiping has the same idea, so Fang Jingtian didn't launch further attacks."
The Immortal Tan joined in imperturbably, "And Yuan Qijing is still alive."
The situation in the current Cultivation circle was quite clear: The former position occupied by the Immortal Liu Ci was still empty; Fang Jingtian had only entered the Heavenly Arrival State recently, and he was still inferior to the figures in the upper state of the Heavenly Arrival State. In comparison to the Center Sect, the Green Mountain Sect was obviously weak at the moment.
"If these ideas were not realized, we would have no choice but to fight against Green Mountain in the battlefield. I'm afraid that the beautiful but frail human world won't be able to withstand the destruction."
The Immortal Tan said this in a sorrowful tone while looking in the direction of Zhaoge City.
The Immortal Bai asked him while looking at him sideways, "What did those on the back mountain say about it?"
The Immortal Tan said, "Those old guys are as indifferent about the matter, being more like stale water or a dried well; they have no intention of getting involved in such affairs. Kou Qintong is the only one who shows any interest in the idea."
Hearing the name of Kou Qintong, the mist shrouding the Immortal Bai dispersed a bit, and her brows furrowed, indicating she felt it somewhat troublesome.
The Immortal Tan said calmly, "He has come to Cloud-Dream Mountain for about a thousand years after his Bloody Demon Church was destroyed; his vicious temperament has been mostly tempered. If we want the humans to suffer less, the battle in Zhaoge City must finish as soon as possible. And we can't hesitate when it's time for him to strike."
"If we can have both Taiping and Jing Yang killed, he must be used," said the Immortal Bai.
The Immortal Tan said, "This pair of brothers are unparalleled in terms of scheming ability; but their Cultivation states are too low right now. What I'm worried about is the attitudes of the Young Zen Master and the person in White Town."
The Immortal Bai said while looking at the ocean of clouds in the north, "If it turns out that they support the two brothers, we have no choice but to kill them all."
She referred to the Young Zen Master and the Broadsword King, Cao Yuan.
Even the Center Sect couldn't kill the two of them so easily.
Judging from what the Immortal Bai said, it seemed to be something to be taken for granted.
The Immortal Tan fell silent for a while. He changed the topic as he said, "At this time every year, Little Zao usually cooks a table-full dishes for us."
This place was not the main valley of Cloud-Dream Mountain, but Bai Zao's manor cave.
The voice of the Immortal Bai didn't grow milder after hearing this; she remarked nonchalantly, "The dishes cooked by her don't taste as good as those cooked by Tong Yan."
"Let's go pay her a visit," the Immortal Tan suggested.
The ocean of clouds floated up slowly, covering the gold colored big tree and the whole platform.
The Immortal Tan and the Immortal Bai arrived in the Great Formation of Cloud-Dream.
This place was at the bottom of the ground, engulfed in total darkness, with the spiritual source giving off many faint green glows once in a while, which looked like the lines on a leaf.
In addition to the glows of the spiritual source, there were two huge dark yellow eyes, which were the eyes of the Unicorn.
The Unicorn trained his line of sight straight ahead, with a nervous expression in his eyes. Even the divine animal felt stressed at the moment.
There was a stone platform in the deepest part of the Great Formation of Cloud-Dream, where a great amount of spiritual energy was gathered. Bai Zao was found to sit there, her eyes closed, the white ribbons on her dress tousling without the aid of the wind.
She was holding a Fairy Book in her hands.
Please go to https://www.readlightnovel.cc/The-Path-Toward-Heaven/
to read the latest chapters for free