687 Before the End of the Story
The people on the top of Tianguang Peak and around it had seen this scene.
The flames in the hermit peaks had gradually disappeared.
The white object in the pale sky seemed to merge into it.
And the red object was dropping down from the sky.
It was then that the Round Turtle closed his eyes slowly, as if he couldn't bear seeing this last scene.
The scene in the hermit peaks had disappeared. The people couldn't see how the Immortal Taiping fell onto the ground, but they all knew the outcome.
The Immortal Taiping had lost.
Even if he was not dead at the moment, he wouldn't last too long.
A complicated atmosphere shrouded the top of Tianguang Peak.
The people of Green Mountain remained silent; they didn't even want to look at each other. Their lines of sight shone on all the places of heaven and earth like the chaotic sword lights.
It was because they were experiencing chaotic emotions at that the moment.
Was this the end?
They felt a bit sad…
A bit empty…
And a bit bewildered.
Their Grandmaster Taiping was dead, and the world became peaceful again; but the Great Formation of Green Mountain was gone. What would they do…when the Immortal Sect Master ascended?
Zhao Layue looked at the immortals Tan and Bai on the clouds. It was unclear if she was also pondering this issue.
"I know what the Cultivationists are thinking right now."
The voice of the Immortal Tan rang out with a bit of sentiment, "But don't you think you worry about this issue a bit too early? It's impossible for the Immortal Taiping to admit defeat so easily, even though his opponent today was the Immortal Jing Yang today."
The patch of cloud and fog beside him didn't give a response. The Chief Nun of the Water-Moon Nunnery said in the green curtain, "You're right. In my opinion, it's not over yet."
The Inherited Heaven Sword was torn to shreds.
So was the Sword Formation of Green Mountain.
As the Immortal Taiping said, many disciples of Green Mountain felt sad and even angry for various reasons, but those that felt truly miserable were the swords that were part of the formation.
The clouds and fog gathered on the top of Yunxing Peak again as countless flying swords were gliding aimlessly among the clouds and fog, letting out a low and indescribable sword sound, as if they were wailing.
The flying swords were not facing each other on two oppose camps now. They were comforting and encouraging each other to live through this difficult time like a bunch of homeless children.
Ping Yongjia woke up as he sensed the disappearance of the Sword Formation of Green Mountain. Looking at the flying swords in the clouds and fog, he felt exceedingly sad for some reason, and cried out after feeling bitter in his nose.
"Don't feel so sad; you guys are still all here," he said to the flying sword in the sky. "Come, come here. Don't get lost."
The sword sounds broke out again. Countless flying swords came down from the sky and before him, looking like a bunch of poor children who had finally found a home to take them in.
Ping Yongjia laughed contentedly, commenting, "This is much better."
He suddenly looked at the northeast blankly after he sensed something.
An object was approaching Green Mountain at a high speed.
Even the Thoughtless Sword couldn't travel so fast.
What made him feel surprised was that this object seemed to have an intangible feature and existence, giving off a feel of emptiness.
The most puzzling thing was that he could sense all this even though the Sword Formation of Green Mountain was gone.
A dozen cracks appeared on the grassland.
The Immortal Taiping stood in the middle of the cracks.
The red cloth he wore looked rather conspicuous against the greenish mountain and field.
At the moment, he was not a prey caught on the spider-web; he was the spider itself.
Jing Jiu landed on the ground from the sky. A dozen bright sword lights emerged from his white cloth and black hair.
The Immortal Taiping commented sentimentally, "Is this the sword style you and he figured out together?"
"It's called the Underworld Fairy Sword," said Jing Jiu.
The Immortal Taiping brought the sleeve to his mouth and wiped its corners.
It was hard to discern the blood stains on the red cloth.
"Back at the West Ocean, I thought it was Liu Ci's doing alone; I didn't expect you to have achieved so much in your sword work."
"Big Brother, I haven't told you this before," said Jing Jiu. "Your talent in Cultivation is not as high as mine; without Green Mountain, you're not my match."
After some moments of silence, the Immortal Taiping said, "It looks like that today; but you should know that my story is not over yet."
During his long career of Cultivation, he had lost many times, like when contending for the position of the sect master of Green Mountain seven hundred years ago and going to the Underworld the first time and so on, but being defeated didn't mean that his career was over. He was akin to an unrelenting evil demon who had climbed back up from the Underworld even though he was trapped at the deepest part of the underground to struggle for the final victory. It was because defeat was not the same as death; only death was the irrevocable outcome.
Among his many defeats, the near fatal one occurred by West Ocean, where he faced the heavenly punishment brought upon him by the Fairy Book of the Center Sect, but it was blocked by Liu Ci.
"We are all afraid of death; in other words, we don't like death. So we try to have a backup plan, like the Thunder-Soul Wood and the All in One."
Jing Jiu continued, "But this is the hermit peaks and you can't get out of here. How will you use those methods?"
"I like eating hotpot, and you like looking at the snow through open windows, but we both have a clear goal when we do things. And we have never done anything meaningless."
The Immortal Taiping went on while staring at him, "When you slept in Zhaoge City, I traveled with the Green Girl for a long time. You should know what my intention is."
"Your total transformation is not complete, so you will face the heavenly punishment at any moment. You tried to find the Green Sky Mirror so that you could hide in it," said Jing Jiu. "But I'm sure she was aware of your intention and she didn't want to tell you this."
"It's rather easy to deceive a little girl like her; and I spent a couple of decades doing so."
The Immortal Taiping went on with a smile, "Otherwise, how could I happen to land here?"
This place was an ordinary patch of wild field in the hermit peaks. There was nothing special about this place except that the grass was quite fresh here.
Since it was a place the Immortal Taiping chose to land, it must have some significance.
The Immortal Taiping lifted his foot and stepped on the grass.
The cracks on the grassland grew deeper, and countless wildflowers sprang up from the black soil.
Many years ago, the wildflowers filled a patch of the field back when the Drifter was asked by him to help Fang Jingtian break through the state.Find authorized novels in Webnovel，faster updates, better experience，Please click www.webnovel.com for visiting.
The wildflowers bloomed back when Jing Jiu broke through the Heavenly Arrival State in Zhaoge City.
Among the blooming wildflowers was an ancient bronze mirror.
It was the Green Sky Mirror.
"The Green Sky Mirror had been hidden in the hermit peaks for a while," said Jing Jiu, "but I didn't expect her to put it back here again."
The Immortal Taiping said, "She didn't tell you where she hid the Green Sky Mirror because she didn't think you were trustworthy. But she opted to hide the Green Sky Mirror in the hermit peaks because she can't trust anybody else but you."
This statement appeared to be perplexing; but Jing Jiu could understand its meaning.
As the Green Girl came to the hermit peaks with the red feather in her peak, she saw Jing Jiu stand by the Green Sky Mirror. "What has happened? How did you know that I've put the Green Sky Mirror here? The Little Red…no, where is Taiping? Is he dead? Did he turn into rain or light?" she asked.
Jing Jiu caught the feather falling down from her beak, saying, "He entered the Green Sky Mirror."
The Green Girl was the spirit of the Green Sky Mirror; she was born with a world inside her and was a natural spiritual body. She could ignore any barrier and go anywhere she wanted to, including the hermit peaks.
She tried her hardest to catch this feather in the strong wind at the One-Cottage House. As she was about to help those scholars, she sensed that someone was touching the Green Sky Mirror; she flew back as quickly as she could.
Hearing what Jing Jiu said, she was taken aback, asking, "Did you let him go in there?"
"No," said Jing Jiu.
The Green Girl exclaimed angrily, "You shouldn't have found the Green Sky Mirror. Now we're all in trouble."
"It's he who found the Green Sky Mirror," protested Jing Jiu. "This is his back-up plan."
Feeling baffled, the Green Girl said, "But I didn't tell him about this place."
Jing Jiu said, "You must have had a moment where your guard was down. And he knows the Two-Mind Connection."
The Green Girl recalled many scenes in a fleeting moment.
Two birds were flying in the blue sky...
On the roofed boat...
The stars shone on the surface of the river.
"He is a spiritual body after the total transformation and can live in the Green Sky Mirror like a spiritual soul. I can't even find him…Even if I found him, I still couldn't do anything about him, unless I destroyed the Green Sky Mirror," said she after a moment of silence. "This is a difficult test he has for you. Now that you're against him destroying the world, are you willing to destroy that world in order to kill him?"
"I'll enter it and try to find him," said Jing Jiu calmly.
The Green Girl said with lowered head, "It'll take many years to do so. This is the second test he has for you: to give up ascension to find him or to stay here to ascend."
"I'll go in there," said Jing Jiu, "but I'm not going to give up on ascension; it's because it won't take long to find him."
The Green Girl lifted her head and asked in bewilderment, "Why do you want to take the risk? You locked him up in the Sword Jail without killing him before; why can't you do the same this time? Isn't the Green Sky Mirror a larger sword jail?"
Jing Jiu said after taking a glance at the sky, "Something very troublesome lies ahead. I have to solve this matter first; otherwise, I'll feel ill at ease."
The Green Girl felt even more astounded and more puzzled, wondering what matter could be more troublesome than the war between the two brothers and the attempt of the Immortal Taiping to destroy the world.
Jing Jiu didn't explain. He sat down by the Green Sky Mirror.
Having said this, he closed his eyes.
The sceneries and objects were basically the same in the Green Sky Mirror, though the world had changed a bit. Yet, change didn't manifest itself: The states were still the same ones; the rivers and mountains were the same; and the people were mostly the same as well.
Jing Jiu had lived in the Green Sky Mirror for many years. Though he spent most of his time like a hermit in the royal palace of the Chu State and on that mountain, no one was more familiar with this world save for the Green Girl. He dusted off the light particles from his cloth before he pushed open the door and walked into the room. Then he saw an old man with white hair.
The territory of the former Chu State and its inhabitants were still a part of Zhao State, except that they governed themselves. The former eldest son of Grand Scholar Zhang was now Master Zhang, and respected by everybody. Even Zhao State would ask for his opinion before they announced a decree. In addition to the respect the people had for his father, the Grand Scholar Zhang, another important reason was because of his relationship with Jing Jiu.
The Manor House of Zhang had moved back to the capital many years ago, which occupied a whole street. His sons and grandsons were all officials in the imperial court, and yet, he found his life was rather tedious. Seeing Jing Jiu walk out from the room, he jumped up from the bamboo chair, not staggering at all. "Your Majesty, you're back! How long will you stay this time?" he exclaimed excitedly.
Jing Jiu replied after glancing at the flowing clouds in the sky, "I came here to take care of a matter; I'll leave as soon as I'm done with it."
The eldest son of the Grand Scholar Zhang felt a bit disappointed, but he didn't dare say anything more. He stood by Jing Jiu while rubbing his hands constantly. "Your Majesty, why did your face change?" he suddenly asked in bewilderment.
Jing Jiu walked to the edge of the well in the courtyard and looked into it. He saw a youthful face reflected in the tranquil surface of the water, a bun on his head.
For some reason, he turned into a young and handsome Daoist monk after he came to the Green Sky Mirror.
Looking at the face he hadn't seen for a long time, Jing Jiu asked after a moment of silence, "But why can you still recognize me?"
The eldest son of the Grand Scholar Zhang laughed while saying, "You've merely changed your face, not to mention I could recognize you even if you had turned into…pooh! I shouldn't even think of that."
Jing Jiu leapt up in the air with the wind and disappeared into the twilight.
A red feather was gliding in front of him the entire time, as though it was guiding him.
It didn't take long before he arrived on a mountain.
There was a Daoist temple in the deep part of the mountain.
A young Daoist monk was sweeping the ground with a bamboo broom in front of the temple.
The young Daoist monk was rather handsome and friendly.
The red feather drifted down slowly.
Jing Jiu caught the feather with his hand and bowed to the young Daoist monk, "Greetings, Big Brother."
The young Daoist monk felt baffled and asked, "Have we met?"
Looking at him quietly, Jing Jiu said, "This is a long story; I don't want to repeat it. Let's finish it all before the sunset."