Everybody in the Underworld was crying in agony, yet in the next minute, the cheers burst out, and so did the humans.
However, in comparison to the Underworld, the human world hadn't suffered as much. The green smoke coming from the Heavenly Well had mostly been inhaled by the Broadsword King, Cao Yuan, and was later on blocked by the small green curtain sedan. Except for the insects and innocent wild animals near the Heavenly Well, the humans had sustained relatively few casualties. As a result, it was mostly cheers heard in the human world.
The cheers seemed to have traveled over the extensive ocean and reached the seashore of the East Ocean.
Looking at the sliver of golden light in the deep part of the ocean, the people let loose relieved smiles, but when they turned around and looked at the cluster of cliffs where the Heavenly Well was situated, the atmosphere had grown grim immediately. They lowered their voices when speaking.
Apart from the small green curtain sedan guarding the Heavenly Well, most of the soldiers and officials of the imperial court were here, and nearly all the personnel of the Pure Heaven Bureau had come.
The Cultivation practitioners had succeeded in replenishing the sea, but they relied greatly on the cooperation of the imperial court and their support.
It was a difficult and hard thing to deal with many matters all at the same time. Gu Qing had thinned considerably over the last ten days, and he looked terrible with sunken eyes.
The officials of the imperial court at the seashore of the East Ocean were all fully aware that the awful mood Master Gu Qing was in had nothing to do with the hardship he was experiencing at the moment, but with another matter.
"I don't understand why we can't find it."
Looking at the Commander of the Pure Heaven Bureau and the General Manager of the Curtain Rollers kneeling before him, Gu Qing said calmly, "If he's still not found, I have no choice but to ask you people to kill yourselves."
The Commander of the Pure Heaven Bureau was not Zhang Yiai anymore, but the general manager of the Curtain Rollers was an old acquaintance. He was the doctor Jing Jiu met by White-Horse Lake in Zhaoge City.
They were two of the most powerful officials in the imperial court. Hearing what Gu Qing said, they didn't dare argue, leaving as quickly as they could after accepting their fate in deference. They were to summon all of their subordinates to search again, and were prepared for their own end.
"You're not someone who would vent his anger on somebody else. Why are you so uptight?"
Tong Yan walked toward him.
Looking at the surface of the ocean, Gu Qing said expressionlessly, "I'm worried that my Master might suffer some bad fate."
"I heard that he was brought away by Zhao Layue; why are you still so worried?" Tong Yan pressed.
Gu Qing returned, "They haven't returned to Green Mountain."
Thinking of Zhao Layue's temperament, Tong Yan fell silent.
As far as Zhao Layue was concerned, there were only two things she was concerned about in this world: the path toward heaven and Jing Jiu.
Now that she had neither brought Jing Jiu back to Green Mountain nor left any trace of either of them, it meant that she believed that not even Green Mountain could solve Jing Jiu's problem.
The ocean was extensive; so was the snowland.
In comparison to the havoc in many places in the human world, the snowland this spring appeared rather peaceful. It was because of this that the Young Zen Master dared leave the small temple in White Town.
A gust of wind suddenly kicked up on the surface of the snowland; the wind traveled through many passes between the black mountains while flinging up a snowy dragon, heading toward the deep part of the snowland.
Dozens of sword lights emerged from the rims of Zhao Layue's dress, breaking apart the wind and snow and disappearing into the air while protecting the person on her back.
Her Thoughtless Sword had already broken in half when the Fairy Lady Bai Ren landed on Green Mountain. Aftershe crudely repaired it, she brought the sword to the remote part of the ocean, and the sword broke again there. Right now the Thoughtless Sword was tied to her waist like two pieces of iron sheet, looking exceedingly abysmal.
She was also in a terrible mental state. It was because she had sustained a severe injury and traveled back and forth tens of thousands of miles; more importantly, she felt a dread in the deep part of her Dao Heart.
Now she was a swordsman in the upper limit of the Broken Sea State and had cultivated the formidable formed shapeless sword body. Even without the Thoughtless Sword, she had few equals in the world. If the Kunlun Sect attempted to avenge He Wei, she could simply kill them all with a swing of her sword.
She was not afraid of the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom either.
What she feared most was the fate of the person on her back.
This was the second time she had come to the deep part of the snowland.
Jing Jiu was asleep unconsciously in Zhaoge City when she came last time.
Yet, Jing Jiu was sleeping unconsciously on her back this time.
Seeing the sword light and snowflakes disappear in front of her eyes, Zhao Layue suddenly thought that she had perhaps surveilled the place for this very occasion when she came to the snowland last time.
The snowland was quite tranquil. One might feel it unreal when facing such a monotonous and remarkable scene.
The lonely icy peak was in her sight already; yet, they hadn't encountered any snowy monsters.
Dozens of straight clefts appeared on the hard surface of the ice, which were the marks left by the sword wills.
Zhao Layue halted her steps.
Innumerable strong energies could be sensed in the surroundings of the glacier. Incoming should be those personal guards of the Queen who had almost killed her last time.
Ignoring the hidden swordsmen of the Snowy Kingdom, Zhao Layue shouted to the icy peak thirty miles away, "I beg you to treat him."
The strong energies faded away, as a much stronger and powerful spiritual awareness landed on the glacier.
The clefts left by the sword wills expanded instantly, dividing the glacier into hundreds of chunks of ice that gave off a gloomy and peculiar glow under the blue sky.
The powerful spiritual awareness could only belong to the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom.
The Queen of the Snowy Kingdom was the highest lifeform in Chaotian, be it the former or present queen.
The spiritual awareness was full of mockery and contempt. "I hadn't killed you last time in hopes that you would walk out of the snowland alive. I did it because I was curious about you. But it doesn't mean that you and I have formed any friendship. How dare you come here to ask for my help?"
Zhao Layue shouted to the icy peak, "You said that we were alike last time, that we were not surrogates, that we would grow stronger and then defeat those who had created us…But it doesn't necessarily mean we should hate those who have created us. You should know why your mother has left the world, and you shouldn't hate her. Instead, you should feel happy for her departure. Similarly, I don't hate him, and I wish you would live. Furthermore, he helped your mother leave this world. Maybe someday I will be able to help you."
After a long moment of silence, the spiritual awareness had finally moved again and landed on Zhao Layue's back.
A moment later, the spiritual awareness expressed a baffled emotion; it seemed that she was wondering how someone like Jing Yang could end up like this.
"His sword source has been exhausted."
"He's a sword."
"A sword without a sword source will die just like a human without blood."
On the first day the turmoil started, Jing Jiu fought with Taiping and killed Bai Ren without sustaining any injury; it was his mental energy that had been significantly exhausted.
After that, he thought about it the whole night. Then, he left Green Mountain, flew to the East Ocean and arrived in the Underworld, traveling tens of thousands of miles between heaven and earth.
In the early morning, he was sneak-attacked and suffered a severe wound on Longevity Mountain. And in the afternoon, he killed the Immortal Bai amid the ocean sprays.
Afterwards, he went to the deep part of the ocean, and began to use his own sword wills to repair this damaged and miserable world.
Even though he was Jing Yang, he had reached the end of his life force because he used up all of his energy.
Zhao Layue had been guarding Ping Yongjia on the Sword Peak the entire time and was aware of what had happened to Jing Jiu. As such, she knew very well about Jing Jiu's body and was certain that the judgment of the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom was accurate.
"I know all the principles," said Zhao Layue while looking at the icy peak giving off a blue glow, "but, I'd like to know how to revive him."
She had caught Jing Jiu at the bottom of the ocean amid the blood-red twilight. And the Giant had told her that Jing Jiu had to pay a steep price for holding the sea with his sword.
Her response at the time was the same: I know all the principles, but I'd like to know how to revive him.
The Giant said that it was beyond his ability to help Jing Jiu.
It occurred to Zhao Layue that she had no choice but to find someone who was more powerful than the Giant.
No matter whether it was in Chaotian or on other lands, the being who was more powerful than the Giant was none other than the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom.
As a result, Zhao Layue came to the deep part of the snowland and before the icy peak.
"As you already know, he's not dead yet…"
Zhao Layue put Jing Jiu on the snow and added while looking at him, "…even though he is not breathing right now."
When a figure in the Heavenly Arrival State departed the world, an abnormal phenomenon would occur in heaven and earth, like the spring rain, the morning sunlight, the twilight and the fallen leaves.
It was unclear what object and phenomenon heaven and earth would occur to commemorate him.
Zhao Layue wished to never know the answer. So long as heaven and earth didn't give a response, she believed Jing Jiu was not dead yet.
The spiritual awareness of the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom had arrived again, claiming that she couldn't find a way to save Jing Jiu either, but she agreed with Zhao Layue's judgment that Jing Jiu was not dead for sure.
Hearing her answer, Zhao Layue felt tremendous relief. Yet, the tiredness crept into every part of her body; she lowered down her head feebly.
Indeed, how could Jing Jiu let himself die?
Even if he had a hard time letting go of that karma and he unexpectedly began to love this world, how could he let himself die for this?
Zhao Layue left the snowland by carrying him on her back.
She didn't alert anyone in White Town. And yet, she stayed in Juye City and summoned Su Ziye.
As soon as Su Ziye walked into the restaurant, he saw Zhao Layue eat a large chunk of meat while sitting by the hotpot, feeling a bit startled. However, he didn't display his surprise on his face. "Why has First Mistress suddenly showed up here?" he remarked with a wide smile.
Zhao Layue was the peak master of Shenmo Peak on Green Mountain and the senior master of Gu Qing and the others; but in Su Ziye's eyes, she had another identity, which was the principal disciple of the Immortal Jing Yang. As such, Su Ziye started addressing her as the First Mistress in his letters to her some time ago.
Zhao Layue didn't refute the title, meaning she had acquiesced to it.
The acquiescence indicated that she liked this title.
Since Su Ziye wished very much to join the branch of Shenmo Peak, he always tried his best to please her.
But Zhao Layue was too busy eating meat with her head lowered to pay attention to him; she was also attempting to get used to the flavor of the spicy souse.
Su Ziye said, "In Juye City, the hand-served mutton is actually tastier. Would you like to…"
Zhao Layue raised her head while shooting him a glance, the expression in her eyes a bit cold.
Su Ziye trailed off and felt somewhat fretful, wondering what wrong words he had spoken.
Zhao Layue set down the bowl and chopsticks before asking, "The Mysterious Dark Sect was specialized in the dark magic, and you are an expert in using poison. Do you have any method to wake up a person who won't wake up on his own?"
Su Ziye intended to reply that a person who wouldn't wake up was dead…But he suddenly recalled the events that had happened in Chaotian lately and guessed who the person was. With a slightly changed expression, he asked about the condition of the patient earnestly.
The soup in the hotpot had frozen due to the cold intent coming from nowhere. It was quiet in the private room. Su Ziye came up with many suggestions, but they were all turned down by Zhao Layue.
She had employed many methods on her way from the Huge Whirlpool to the snowland. If the dark magic of the Mysterious Dark Sect and poison were useless, other methods would not help either.
Looking at her pale face, Su Ziye suddenly felt a sense of pity for her. As he got up and was about to leave the private room, he couldn't help but stop short, asking, "Is the Grandmaster…okay?"
"Your medicine will be provided." Zhao Layue didn't answer his question directly.
After leaving the private room and returning to the Heaven A room, she sat down at the edge of the bed and fell silent for a long time after caressing Jing Jiu's face a few times softly.
Jing Jiu hadn't woken up yet, nor did he start breathing again. However, she believed in the judgment of the Queen of the Snowy Kingdom that he was indeed not dead yet, not to mention his body showed no sign of decaying.
But how long would this condition last? And what would be the outcome?
He had slept unconsciously in Zhaoge City for one hundred years; things were different this time.
He had temperature and was breathing back then.
It was true that she knew all the principles.
And she knew that he was not dead.
Yet, if he would never wake up, that was no different than being dead.
As the Cultivation practitioners of various sects in Chaotian were busy moving the mountain range to replenish the sea in the deep part of the ocean, a sword light had flashed over the ocean in the north.
The sword light was not noticed by anyone, not even by Bu Qiuxiao.
It was because the sword light traveled too fast, and it was too far away; furthermore, it was quite chaotic on the ocean at the time.
By the time the sea was successfully replenished and the cheers and crying could be heard everywhere in the human world and the Underworld, the sword light had arrived in Chaotian; or in other words, it had returned to Chaotian.
As the sword light faded, the figure of a Cultivation practitioner materialized underneath a pine tree.
The middle-aged man didn't show any emotion, with one arm folded behind his back. His expression was not nonchalant but more like a stone statue.
He left the pine tree and came to the official road. Seeing the words on the sign hanging by the bistro up ahead, the expression in the eyes of the middle-aged man changed a bit.
It seemed that the common words had stirred him more than the project of replenishing the sea at the Huge Whirlpool.
A few merchants were eating in the bistro. It seemed that they were displeased with the limited choices of the dishes, swearing and badmouthing about the Dongyi Dao.
"Hey! Hunter, the wild rooster in your hand looks quite tempting. How much is it?"
"Yeah, it must be quite tasty after boiling it."
"You guys don't know a thing about eating food. The wild rooster tastes better when it's fried, excellent with drinking wine."
The middle-aged man was taken aback at first. He understood what they were talking about after he looked at the Dark Phoenix in his hand.
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