Meanwhile, at the Heavenly Policy Hall.
"... Is that all?"
Sitting in the middle of the Heavenly Policy Hall, the Second Elder Liu Xian was slowly writing something on a sincerity paper with a green bamboo pen. He then raised his head and asked the person standing before him.
Being intensely stared at by the Elder, the person before him seriously replied, "That is all. There are some other things, which are my personal affairs. But all the major events are those."
"Oh." Liu Xian heaved a sigh, and then he picked up a stack of sincerity papers on the table. "If this is true, then it will be a problem."
However, next to Liu Xian, the Disciplinary Elder Fang He sneered. "Problem? That's their problem! Unexpectedly, Shengjing Sect did such a nasty thing! They colluded with the mortal world's government to trick ignorant people; cheating money from people by selling them low-rank man-made spirit root with a highly inflated price! They even secretly did experiments on human! These methods are no different than that of a devil path!"
Liu Xian sighed. "Don't get too worked up, Junior Brother Fang He. This thing only happened in a small country; it's basically a small scale operation led by a head of a subdivision. It is unlikely to rise to the same level as those of the devil path."
Fang He was outraged. "Senior Brother, how could you say that? Even if it's just a small scale, it is against the foundation principle of the Shengjing Sect, isn't it? If the subordinate misbehaves, wouldn't the leader be liable for not upholding the rule? Not to mention a mere head of a subdivision, unexpectedly, even a Yuanying Stage Elder has come out to defend him! Senior Brother, can't you see the real problem behind this!? Furthermore, with such a disregard for human life, if that outrageous act can't be classified as the devil path, then what is? Does someone has to personally butcher people until that someone is drowned in the river of blood before we call that someone a person from the devil path!?"
Liu Xian bitterly smiled. "Junior Brother, if this thing is according to your understanding, then we have no choice but not to let it go. However, what we have is only a testimony from our own people. How would you get other people to believe that? Shengjing Sect's subdivision head on the White Moon Country colluding with the government and doing crooked things… Who would believe this thing? Junior Brother, weren't you shocked by Junior Sister's testimony? You even wanted her to take the Great Heart Devil Oath?"
Fang He was at a loss for words; he looked at the forced smile of his Senior Brother, and then saw the lowly smile of his Fifth Junior Sister; his face became somewhat awkward. "Oh, although Junior Sister's behavior is usually dishonorable, but this kind of thing is not a joke. I… trust her."
However, before the Fifth Junior Sister jumped up to cheer him, Fang He roared, "Don't be proud of yourself! I trusting you in front of outsiders doesn't mean that I trust you within the sect! After we deal with this Zhifeng, I will impeach you; I will absolutely not hesitate!"
"Damn! Are you serious?"
After waving his hand to interrupt their quarrel, Liu Xian loudly sighed. "Junior Brother, it's okay if you're willing to trust Junior Sister, but your trust is useless. Junior Martial Sister impulsively busted the Shengjing Sect's division head's operation, but actually, it made them get a hold of her. Why do you think Zhifeng came knocking at our door? It's because he is very righteous in his cause!"
Fang He said, "I don't need to care for his righteous cause! So what if he thinks he has the truth? Could his truth be more true than natural justice? To which I say, Fifth Junior Sister did very well! If you see injustice on the road, do you need to think it over before you deal with it? We don't need to consider the repercussion if we're enforcing righteous justice on behalf of Heaven!
Fifth Junior Sister was jubilant. "Yeah! The justice will win!"
Fang He turned his head at his Fifth Junior Sister and roared, "Be quiet! Your acts don't represent the right either! Just wait for your impeachment!"
"Damn! Senior Brother, do you have a split personality or are you a tsundere!?"
Liu Xian sighed and no longer bothered with their quarrel.
In the past, when his Junior Brother Fang He was appointed as the Disciplinary Elder, it was because of Fang He's gargantuan regard of the rules. Even if the Sect Leader did something wrong, Fang He would bluntly call the Sect Leader out for it, putting the truth above the heart's sentiment. Ultimately, Fang He's character was only fit as the Sect's Disciplinary Elder to enforce internal rules. If it came to the outside rules, that would never work.
If he wanted to be honest with himself, the narration recorded on the sincerity paper was indeed the truth. When the Fifth Elder went out wandering, at White Moon Country, she came across the Shengjing Sect's subdivision head who was breaking the law and committing crimes. Thereupon, based on various reasons, she directly destroyed the subdivision head's operation and injured the man… In the entire Union of Ten Thousand Immortals, there has never been a unified law enforcement agency, thus there was no universal rule on how to enforce justice. Therefore, what she did was understandable, even to the point of idealized and commendable.
However, the fact on the ground wasn't that simple. Being a chivalrous hero was indeed cool, but all the evidence had been destroyed. Right now, the only "evidence" that they could gather was this bundle of sincere paper filled with testimony of the Fifth Junior Sister—which was a sufficient proof for the people within the sect. However, to the outside world, it was worthless!
However, despite all of that, Liu Xian didn't think that this should be blamed on anyone. Based on Fifth Junior Sister character, she never bothered with the mortal things. However, since she had such an intense reaction to this, it was clear that she has her reasons. However, if she didn't say it, no one could force her to speak.
In any case, the key facts have already been cleared, so the next step… should be decided by the Sect Leader.
After they have verified the case, the Second Elder and Third Elder took the stack of valuable sincerity papers out of the Heavenly Policy Hall and flew towards the Four Divisions Peak on their flying swords.
With this information at hand, Liu Xian knew that they would not be able to extricate themselves, but so what? Spirit Sword Sect didn't want to stir up trouble, but they were never afraid to face it. If the other party could take a step back, then everything would be good; however, if not… Hehehe, the Elders of the Heavenly Sword Hall have long been idle, they needed to move their muscles and loosen their bones.
On the other side, the Fifth Elder has been freed, and based on Liu Xian's words, except for the Four Divisions Peak, she was free to go anywhere.
The reason for this exception was simple enough: if they let this fellow ran to the Four Divisions Peak and confront Daoist Master Zhifeng, then it would be like pouring gasoline on the fire; no peaceful agreement could be reached. Although Fifth Junior Sister was not an absolutely wicked person, her tactlessness and her tendency to make a scene would often cause even bigger trouble.
The Fifth Elder, being bored after receiving interrogation at the Heavenly Policy Hall, went out of the hall, only to discover her disciple, Wang Lu, waiting for her at the entrance. On his head was a triangle cap, on his neck hung a brightly colored garland, and on his hand was a small firework with an unclear origin.
Upon seeing his Master coming out, Wang Lu's face lit up, and he lit the firework.
"Congratulations, Master, for once again getting into trouble and even incurring disaster to the Sect. I wish you soon step down from the position of Elder and become an idler, hahaha!"
Fifth Elder suddenly jumped three feet high. "F*cking hell! You, this evil disciple, want to rebel!"
Wang Lu firmly nodded his head. "I had deliberately inquired it a moment ago. Although there are no specific rules about it in the sect regulation, but for those Successor Disciples whose Master lost the Elder identity from committing a crime, the sect will appoint a new Elder as their Master. So please Master, step down in peace!"
"Sh*t! This girl is not going anywhere! I still have ten thousand years of sect subsidy waiting for me!" His Master somewhat breathlessly said; she then cast a resentful look at Wang Lu. "And who told you it's me who stirred up trouble? Obviously, it's Liu Xian who unfairly accused me of something, understood!"
Wang Lu thought for a moment. "When you descended the mountain to wander around, you encountered a big breasted girl, so you pulled your sword and threatened her. After it happened, the girl's family member came to the sect to look for the culprit, right?"
"... You really have no confidence in me."
Wang Lu laughed. "I am only confident with how low the things you can do, Master."
"Rest assured, one day you, as my disciple, will surpass me, the Master." The Fifth Elder became down-hearted. "Alas, since ancient times, a sage will always be lonely."
Seeing that his Master appeared to be really upset, Wang Lu became curious, so he put down the triangular hat, set aside the colorful garland, and then asked, "What happened exactly?"
"It's nothing actually. When I descended the mountain to refine the drugs, I passed by the White Moon Country. There, I came across a new spiritual teaching that was doing all kinds of swindling activities, which called themselves A Thousand Spirit Sect. Usually, the Immortal Cultivation sects would never pay attention to the prosperity and decline of this kind of small sect, considering how big the Nine Regions is. But these animals' banner was really weird that it caught my attention: Mortal's Immortal Cultivation."
Wang Lu laughed in spite of trying not to. "What's so strange about that? There are countless mortal gangs of swindlers who do this kind of thing. In the past, before I came to the mountain, in my home village, there is this Seven Stars Sect fraudster who tricks people off of their money…"
However, Fifth Elder earnestly shook her head. "It's not that simple. The sect that you said can only be popular in some faraway mountain village. In the bustling city, however, the citizens are well-informed, which mean you can't fool them. But this Thousand Spirit Sect is different. They established themselves in the capital of the White Moon Country, and their influence had reached the major cities and faraway villages; they go the high road!"
Wang Lu finally found it strange. "I remember this White Moon Country is just a small country. But in a country's capital, there should be some capable person that could see through the fraud, shouldn't it?"
Fifth Elder sneered. "That's right, capable people indeed exist there, including the King of the White Moon Country, several low-level cultivators, and martial arts masters of Xiantian stage. In the past, they were able to see through some of the low level scams. However, this time, because of their existence, things went bad instead. It's because within the White Moon Country, those who do their utmost to spread the influence of this Thousand Spirit Sect were exactly these capable people! With the backing of these people, the Thousand Spirit Sect's development went into overdrive, and they became unstoppable. And the reason why those people gave their support to the Thousand Spirit Sect is actually very simple: because they have personally tried the Mortal's Immortal Cultivation and got real gain from their effort. It is said that a certain Foundation Establishment cultivator that was bestowed the title of Teacher of the State by the King of the White Moon Country, in one fell swoop, had broken through the Xudan Stage. At that time, I felt strange and thought that, could the man-made spirit root actually be able to make a breakthrough here? When I conducted an in-depth investigation, I found out… Hehehe, something really good."
Although her mouth said "something really good", her tone and expression showed otherwise. Soon, she unveiled the mystery, which was a really scary stuff.
"It's the Heaven Burning Blood Technique."
As a top student, Wang Lu's first reaction was: "Damn! Isn't that the skill that shortens the practitioner's life?"
"Correct. It's that devil art of exchanging natural lifespan for power. This Thousand Spirit Sect growth strategy in the White Moon Country is actually very simple: by using a large quantity of low rate manmade spirit root, they led the ordinary people to cross the doorstep of cultivation. And then, they used this Heaven Burning Blood Technique to provide the necessary energy required to advance in cultivation level. Those cultivators think that their cultivation speed is really fast, but they didn't realize that they were duped, and it would actually lead them to a faster death."
Wang Lu frowned. "But… I heard that the life-shortening effect of this art is exceptionally overbearing, so how could this Thousand Spirit Sect be so popular? The people should realize the terrible side effect quite fast, so how could they become increasingly more successful?"
"Of course, this is not the original version of the Heaven Burning Blood Technique. What they did was actually quite ingenious—the technique that the Thousand Spirit Sect spread in the White Moon Country has been passed through several improvement iterations from experts, so the natural lifespan reduction has been significantly reduced. Moreover, they put a restriction on the technique: they certainly wouldn't let those 'geese that lay the golden eggs' to directly die. At most, the cultivators would only feel a sudden loss of power that they would get back in a few days. Not to mention that, along with their advancement in cultivation level, their natural lifespan would also increase. Reportedly, some talented individuals have been able to counterbalance the lifespan shortening effect, thus, they didn't feel anything abnormal with the technique."
Wang Lu asked, "Since it has been improved, isn't that good?"
"Good your ass! If this crooked way is really that effective, then the world won't need a genuine cultivation practice anymore! Once these people encountered a bottleneck, they just need to burn a few years of their lifespan, and they would be able to pass through it… How could there be something so cheap!? Why do you think this Heaven Burning Blood Technique is called a devil technique? Because no matter how good the cultivation is from the outside, it's still basically a sand castle; a single shake and it would collapse immediately. Even if the technique is improved so that the lifespan shortening effect is reduced, the nature of this technique is still the same; those who practice it would never have a future."
Regarding the topic of cultivation method, the Fifth Elder was usually quite serious. At this time, she vehemently criticized this Heaven Burning Blood Technique, which was simply her qualitative appraisal of it.
As the sole audience, even though Wang Lu was a top student, his knowledge on the topic of cultivation obviously couldn't be compared to his Master, thus, he accepted her viewpoint with a nod.
"But Master, based on your character, when you learned the truth, at most, you would only ridicule them as ignorant fools, it shouldn't warrant your direct intervention, shouldn't it?"
Fifth Elder nodded in agreement. "Of course, what does the life and death of those in the White Moon Country have to do with me? Even if the people there want to do blood sacrifice, I will do nothing more than dip my steamed buns in the blood and eat it. So, like you said, I just called them with a few variation of retarded and then turned away."
Wang Lu curiously asked, "Then what could possibly lead this to so much trouble now?"
The Fifth Elder thought for a moment and then replied, "Perhaps it has something to do with the location? I called them on the Thousand Spirit Sect's main base where they usually gathered."
"Then, there's this fat leader who came out and scolded me back, telling me that I am ignorant, uneducated, would receive the wrath of Heaven, and so on. I was too lazy to pay attention to his nonsense, so I just settled it with a duel. That loser was a Jindan Stage Cultivator, so I let him fight me while I don't use my hands, legs, and breasts. As expected, I easily won in mere seconds. However, as soon as I won, there's a peak Jindan Stage cultivator who challenged me. I didn't know why this fellow wanted to defend the leader, but in any case, since I am being challenged, I am not going to decline. But this peak Jindan cultivator isn't that much better than the leader, so I still used my stick-shaped form and easily won in seconds. However, after I won the match, a certain Yuanying Stage cultivator from the Shengjing Sect could not sit still."
Fifth Elder continued with a sneer. "Oh, hehehe ~"
After that, she didn't need to explain it anymore because Wang Lu could guess what happened next. Because his Master has gone overboard in front the Thousand Spirit Sect's main base, it caused the actor behind the scene, who was from the Shengjing Sect, to appear. After that, things naturally developed to the current situation.
Wang Lu quickly put his thoughts in order again and then sighed. "It's the Shengjing Sect's own fault for not strictly upholding their regulation so that this fellow could go rampant like that, but… I am really surprised that you, Master, actually have a heroic heart."
The Fifth Elder was stunned; she never expected her disciple to rate her so highly like that. "Hey, what does this have anything to do with a heroic heart? Let me tell you, I just laughed at their stupidity, and I never really cared for those who dies or lives in that White Moon Country."
However, seeing that Wang Lu was still unconvinced with that, the Fifth Elder snorted, hopped on her bamboo sword, and flew away, no longer wanting to argue with him.