Northwest corner of the Great Zhou Dynasty, Black Crow Mountain.
Deep in the forest, in a sinisterly dark area, a bloodstained palace was erected.
This day, a piece of news arrived.
“Master, Su Zimo has returned from the ancient battlefield and has arrived at Ethereal Peak!”
A blood-robed middle-aged man opened his eyes. They shone with a sinister faint green hue as he said coldly, “I want nothing in the radius of 50 kilometers around Ethereal Peak to remain alive!”
His voice was extremely chilling and spread to every single corner of Black Crow Mountain.
Countless blood crows flew out from Black Crow Mountain, shrieking as they swarmed the skies with their sheer numbers and flew towards Ethereal Peak.
Two days later, Iridescent Clouds Palace.
An order was sent forth that mobilized the sect.
Wage war against Ethereal Peak!
Throughout the years, all the sects in the territory of Great Zhou had harbored coveting thoughts towards Ethereal Peak, Iridescent Clouds Palace included.
Everyone knew that the arrival of the order meant that Iridescent Clouds Palace was absolutely confident!
It was extremely likely that for this battle, a Void Reversion Dao Being, Iridescent Clouds Palace’s Founder Master, would appear!
Perfected Being Cang Lang could not help but roar in laughter.
“Su Zimo, oh, Su Zimo. Even if you managed to cultivate and join Ethereal Peak, so what? At the end of the day, you still can’t escape death!”
Almost at the same time…
News spread within True Fire Sect that the sect master was leading an army to wage war against Ethereal Peak!
True Fire Sect’s elder, Sima Zhi, clenched his fists tightly. He laughed endlessly in a cold manner and sneered, “I’ve finally waited for this day. Su Zimo, you killed my disciple and shamed me at the sect competition. I’m going to turn you into ashes!”
Not long after, many cultivators of Southern Mountains Sect were mobilized.
Azure Frost Sect.
A few Golden Cores stood together. Among them was Ji Yaoxue’s previous master, Perfected Being Yi Ning, who had appeared at the sect competition.
She sighed after hearing the news of everything outside.
Actually, this was a situation that everyone had predicted long ago.
Ever since the death of Ethereal Peak’s Founder Master, they were already weakened and their only support was an aging demon beast.
The foundation of Ethereal Peak was stronger than the other four major sects and they had been established for a long time – everyone was coveting the countless treasures and secret skills in their sect!
Prior to this, the reason why the other sects did not dare to act recklessly was because they were wary of the old immortal crane that was at Void Reversion realm.
Each of the five major sects had a Void Reversion expert holding the fort and maintaining the balance.
However, all the Golden Cores and Nascent Souls of the sects knew that once the old immortal crane was at the end of her lifespan, the balance would be broken and that would be the moment of Ethereal Peak’s annihilation!
Normally speaking, the other major sects would wait for dozens of years more.
But now, with Blood Crow Palace leading the fight, apart from Iridescent Clouds Palace, True Fire Sect and Southern Mountains Sect, there would be other sects and cultivators coming forth to Ethereal Peak to take advantage of the situation.
It was most likely the same for Perfected Being Yi Ning’s Azure Frost Sect.
“Everyone kicks a man who is down,”
She sighed gently.
She could not help but feel regret when she recalled the scholarly green-robed cultivator at the sect competition.
Within ten days, all the sects within the territory of Great Zhou heard about this and moved one after another – their target was Ethereal Peak!
“So what if you’re the number one Weapon Refinement Master of Great Zhou? At the end of the day, you’re just doing it for all of us!”
“Hehe, notwithstanding the secret skills of Ethereal Peak, there are countless high-grade spirit weapons in Mr. Mo’s possession alone!”
Instantly, the world was moving!
Hundreds of Golden Cores stood in Ethereal Palace, most of them discussing in hushed whispers with grim expressions.
Sect Master Ling Yun sat in the middle of everyone – his eyes were closed and he was expressionless.
“Reporting in, sect master!”
A Golden Core strode hastily into the hall and said deeply, “Some blood-eyed crows have suddenly appeared in the forest outside the sect and more are gathering!”
Sect Master Ling Yun replied indifferently; he did not open his eyes still.
The hearts of many Golden Cores skipped a beat as they thought to themselves, “It’s coming!”
At the end of the day, they could not avoid this crisis still.
Initially, this crisis would take another dozens of years to arrive with the backing of the old immortal crane.
However, nobody expected that something would change in this period of time. By some freak accident, Su Zimo was embroiled in an irreconcilable feud with Blood Crow Palace’s Lord and that resulted in the situation today.
“It’s all Su Zimo’s fault. If it wasn’t for him, we wouldn’t have made enemies with a sect as strong as Blood Crow Palace!” Finally, a Golden Core could not help but bark with a grim expression.
Someone else declared, “Sect master, let’s just hand over Su Zimo. Perhaps it might help to quell the anger of Blood Crow Palace.”
“That’s correct! Why should Ethereal Peak die together for Su Zimo’s feud?!”
The voices of dissent were growing louder in the hall and many Golden Cores were moved.
The disheveled old man could not help but curse as he blew at his beard with widened eyes. Pointing at the Golden Cores who spoke, he shouted, “How dare you have the cheek to speak of such words!”
“Do you think that we wouldn’t have a feud with Blood Crow Palace if Su Zimo wasn’t here?”
“Who was the one who killed so many cultivators of our sect in the battle at Dongling Valley?”
“Who was the one who killed Peak Master Wen Xuan?”
The disheveled old man’s questioned caused everyone to go silent.
The few Golden Cores who spoke at the start were quiet as well.
Loudly, the disheveled old man hollered, “Everything else aside, if not for Su Zimo, all our disciples at Dongling Valley would have died in the battle!”
“Instead, you guys are talking about his great deed like it was a mistake. Have your consciences been eaten up by dogs?”
The disheveled old man’s angry scolding reverberated in the hall deafeningly.
Xuan Yi stood up and said grimly, “Additionally, back at the sect competition, if Su Zimo hadn’t held the fort, Ethereal Peak would have been thoroughly shamed and turned into a joke of the cultivation world of Great Zhou.”
“Countless people would be disheartened if we hand over a disciple as such!”
Opening his eyes, Sect Master Ling Yun said calmly, “Even if Su Zimo did not contribute as he did and was merely an ordinary disciple of Ethereal Peak, there’s no way we will cast him out! Ethereal Peak wouldn’t have survived till this day if we sacrificed our disciples for the sake of survival. At the same time, I’m not able to do something like that either!”
“Everyone has their ambitions and those who want to leave the sect, do it now. I won’t stop you.”
Sect Master Ling Yun swept his gaze across the crowd.
Some cultivators cupped their fists and left one after another, but even more chose to stay.
Among the crowd, an outstanding girl with withered, yellow hair stood.
She smiled gently upon seeing everything unfold and her eyes were bright and moving.
Previously, Nian Qi accompanied Su Zimo back to Ethereal Peak and had been listening and observing in secret ever since.
She wandered everywhere and had no home since she was young. As such, it was hard for her to trust people.
Towards such a foreign environment and these new people, she was conflicted and resistant. However, she did not dare to bother Su Zimo since he was in seclusion.
Yet, as time passed by, her impression of this sect gradually changed.
There was a group of lovely cultivators within and there were also righteous people.
At that moment, after she heard the words of Sect Master Ling Yun, Nian Qi made up her mind that she was going to stay in Ethereal Peak from now on, never forsaking it!