All their gazes were no longer trained on Si Ma Xin, but on Su Ming, and their looks were all conflicted.
Su Ming rarely spoke, and it seemed to them that he was a quiet man. Yet Su Ming and Si Ma Xin’s battle had made the other Freezing Sky Clan disciples from the other eight summits to remember him. Their previous disdainful comments were already gone like the wind.
Su Ming had used his actions to crush all their disdain and contempt, and all these emotions had melted into the hearts of all those who’d spoken those words.
To them, Su Ming was now an existence that could be said to be equal to Si Ma Xin. He might be slightly weaker than he was, but if he could fight against Si Ma Xin to this point and force him to use the Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed, then it could only mean that he was an extraordinary person.
From this day onwards, Su Ming’s name would sweep through the land like a typhoon, and there will be a lot of people who would remember everything that had happened.
Perhaps in the future, there will be one more person who will be known as the prodigy of Freezing Sky Clan. However, this person belonged to the ninth summit! Moreover, he was not their senior brother or junior brother. He was… their uncle master.
The fourth in seniority from the ninth summit – uncle master Su.
However, when Han Cang Zi heard Si Ma Xin’s words from where she stood on the third summit, her expression instantly changed. She had a vague feeling that something was off with Si Ma Xin’s words. It was as if there was something within them that made her skin crawl and her heart clench in terror.
It was as if the attack was not as simple as it seemed, but there was a danger within that could not be pinpointed!
"No… There’s something wrong with this…" Han Cang Zi mumbled.
With a frown on her face, she started mulling over his words.
At the same time, Han Fei Zi was also watching from the fourth summit. However, she was different from Han Cang Zi. She did not think about what Si Ma Xin said, but was watching Su Ming. There was shock on her face.
Su Ming’s strength had once again exceeded Han Fei Zi’s expectations. This change made her feel that if Su Ming continued growing stronger, then the distance between them would increase.
The red robed left preceptor had a displeased look in his eyes as he stood on the fourth summit. The others might not understand the meaning behind Si Ma Xin’s words, but he did.
The old man let out a cold harrumph and swept his eyes towards the quiet ninth summit before he fell silent.
The long haired woman sitting on the big stone platform on the seventh summit was also frowning. When she looked at Si Ma Xin standing in the distance, there was disgust in her eyes.
"I read some ancient scrolls before, and one of them recorded the words left from one of the other worlds. What did it say now..?"
The woman spoke softly, and the women standing behind her immediately stood to attention. Some of them even looked excited and eager. Being able to receive pointers from their eldest senior sister was something fortunate to them.
"If you stay on your Dao1 but have no method of solving a particular problem now, that method will eventually come to you. If you have the skills and power, but have strayed from your Dao, then you cannot use your skills, and your power will forever stay stagnant! I don’t understand the ‘Dao’ meant by those in the other worlds, but now…"
The woman gaze went from Su Ming to Si Ma Xin, a contemplative look on her face.
Tian Xie Zi continued drinking from his gourd at the top of the ninth summit. It was as if he did not hear what had happened outside.
Su Ming’s second senior brother who was still crouching down tending to his flowers at the mountainside frowned and put aside the flowers in his hands before standing up and casting his gaze into the distance.
Si Ma Xin’s words were still echoing in the air above the buildings located at the center of the nine summits and under Heaven Gate. All of his mystical abilities were built with the Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed as its basis. Even the God of Berserkers Transformation would show different changes according to the different Art practised. With Si Ma Xin, the Art was based on his Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed.
This Art was created by the second God of Berserkers and contained immeasurable power. Legends said that the second God of Berserkers used this Art to enslave those from the other worlds, this way obtaining the right to become the God of Berserkers. He might not have reached the height of power of the first God of Berserkers, but he was still powerful enough to make clouds tumble with just a shout.
Si Ma Xin used a lot of time and effort in practicing this Art. Just the act of searching for Berserkers Seeds alone had used up a lot of time and energy on his side. Unless he absolutely had to, he did not want to activate this ability to fight against his enemies.
Because once he used this ability, all the Berserker Children that had been planted with the Berserker Seed would fall into a certain state, just like Fang Mu had previously done, and die.
This was something Si Ma Xin found hard to accept. It would make all the progress he had with the Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed come to a halt, and he would have to find enough Berserker Children before he could begin practicing the Art again.
Yet now, Si Ma Xin casted this Art against Su Ming without much hesitation. This was not a moment of recklessness, but a choice after a long period of careful thought!
He would rather sacrifice all his Berserker Children to obtain a new one… This new Berserker Son… was Su Ming!
Su Ming’s growth speed, his frightening potential, and his action in dispelling his God of Berserkers Transformation not only made Si Ma Xin shocked and aghast, it also sprouted a sinister thought in his heart.
The idea was to plant a Berserker Seed in Su Ming’s body and turn him into his Berserker Seed!
‘If I can turn him into my Berserker Seed, then with his growth speed and his potential, it’ll be worth it for me to sacrifice all my other Berserker Children!
‘After all, while good Berserker Children are difficult to find, people like Su Ming are even rarer. Now that I’ve found one, I won’t be satisfied with letting him go!’
A light flickered in Si Ma Xin’s eyes, and when he looked towards Su Ming, there was a strange look hidden deep within his eyes.
When he declared that if Su Ming could receive his subsequent and final attack, then he would bow down towards him in the future, those words were actually something out of character for him.
If there was no underlying meaning behind his words, he would not do something so stupid. That sentence was the same as forcing himself into a corner. He had to win, or else the consequences would be unbearable for him.
In truth, the words he said were a suggestion required for the Art and for him to plant the Berserker Seed. It could even be said to be a hook.
He would bury the words in Su Ming’s heart and make it a hook. The more Su Ming placed his attention on it, the more weight those words would carry. Then with those words as a hook, he could form a strange connection with Su Ming. While that connection may not have physical form and would be something imaginary, this sort of hook was the connecting line that was particularly important in practicing the Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed.
By using the outcome of the battle as a hook, burying the words in Su Ming’s heart, then gathering them into a Seed within him as a premise, then if Si Ma Xin won this battle, the Seed would slowly grow into a real Berserker Seed in its unique way within Su Ming.
Even if he lost, then when he saw Su Ming and had to kneel down before him, the surges of emotion Su Ming would feel no matter how small they may be when he saw this action would nourish the Berserker Seed and allow it to grow.
This was the mysterious and domineering quality of the Great Art of Heartless Berserker Seed, the Art that few people had understood over the countless years that had passed. As long as the targets had a slight opening in their minds, then this Art could rip apart that opening and enter. The casters would not take their targets’ spirits, but could use them and their power for themselves.
This mystical ability was simply too tyrannical. If the caster did not completely understand the Art, then the rate of success would be low. Unless they could use their power to suppress their target’s and forcefully plant the Seed within them, then they would need luck.
If Si Ma Xin won, then he would have complete ownership over this powerful Berserker Son. If he lost, he could still slowly make Su Ming turn into his Berserker Son. To Si Ma Xin, the only thing he would lose was a bit of his reputation. This was something he could bear.
Right now, he was floating in midair. As he spread out his arms, the presence coming from within him increased at a shocking speed. It even gave others the feeling that he had reached the Bone Sacrifice Realm.
Su Ming frowned. He had already heard Si Ma Xin’s words. There was something he couldn’t describe within them. It was as if the words had crawled into his heart and were echoing endlessly within him.
At that moment, an anxious voice suddenly traveled out from the third summit.
"Su Ming, don’t fight him! He wants to plant…"
That voice belonged to Han Cang Zi, yet she could only speak further. With a cold harrumph from Si Ma Xin, her words were immediately cut off.
Nonetheless, even though she did not manage to finish speaking, this battle was bound to not be able to continue, because right after Si Ma Xin let out that sound, the left preceptor’s dark and sullen voice traveled out from the fourth summit and reverberated through Freezing Sky Clan.
"The school forbids in-fighting! Do you two not know the rules?!"
That voice was not loud, but there was an intimidating power to it. When it fell into everyone’s ears, each word was like a roar of thunder that grew increasingly louder by the word until it eventually turned into countless echoes that sounded as if there were tens of thousands of people growling at the same time. It shook the world and caused the weather to change, the clouds to tumble back, and even the ice on the ground to shudder.
Si Ma Xin trembled. He felt as if there was thunder roaring right beside his ears. The presence rising within him was cut off, and he staggered three steps back and blood flowed down the corner of his lips.
Su Ming was the same. His ears rang, and his face instantly grew pale. He staggered five steps back, and as blood flowed from his mouth, a light bell toll came from Han Mountain Bell hiding within his body.
"Si Ma Xin, Su Ming is your senior. He has full right to block your Seven Colored Mountain. You are the one at fault! You are punished to three months of isolation and you are not allowed to leave the first summit during that time. Now go!"
Si Ma Xin’s expression changed and he eventually lowered his head to bow towards the fourth summit. Then with a dark look on his face, he put away the Seven Colored Mountain and looked at the girl who was still watching and gave her a nod before he flew back towards the first summit.
"As for the rest of you, leave!"
The left preceptor’s voice rang loud and the people gathered instantly bowed towards the fourth summit respectfully before they turned to Su Ming. Some of them even wrapped their fists in their palms and saluted him with smiles on their faces before they quickly left, allowing some semblance of normalcy to return to the place.
As for the girl who looked exactly like Bai Ling but was not Bai Ling, she hesitated for a moment before looking at Su Ming. There was still hostility in her eyes, but this was the first time she spoke to Su Ming.
"You asked for my name previously. This isn’t some secret to begin with, you’ll know eventually, since you’re a disciple in Freezing Sky Clan. My name is Bai Su. I hope that you can return to big brother Si Ma what belongs to him. Taking what belongs to others will only make others despise you!"
道: Dao, or Tao, or the Way, or the Path, is a philosophical state in Taoism. It is an underlying natural order of the universe, a way of life, and a concept. There are so many interpretations to the word Dao that it's rather confusing, but in this novel, I believe that Dao is used in this context – an ongoing practice to reach a state of spiritual perfection. For the sake of consistency between RI and ISSTH, the word Dao is used instead of the insane amount of alternatives available for the word.