After shutting the window gently, Xiao Chen returned to the desk. He was quite embarrassed to find only a small bed in this room. All the other rooms had been taken. He smiled. "Senior Sister Luo, rest well tonight. I will sit in the room and contemplate our next move."
Luo Shangyan glanced at him and said, "You didn't rest last night either. Will you be fine?" Xiao Chen shook his head and smiled. "I will."
At this moment, in the fortress on the west mountain, a handsome man in red was surveying the people below him with an indistinct smile on his lips. A cyan-robed man approached him from a path behind. He said blandly, "The news you have released about the Ancient Immortal Clan ruin has brought many cultivators here."
The cyan-robed man was Leng Ningfeng, who had represented the Qing State during the Immortals League Competition. The handsome man still gazed down below him, like a supreme Immortal overlooking all sentient souls. He smiled indifferently. "Let them come, the more the merrier. Let them be my sacrificial offerings."
Leng Ningfeng stretched his tired back and continued blandly. "I've heard though that what you did these years have attracted the attention of the Ancient Immortal Clan. Thousand Feathers Sect seemed to have noticed you."
"Oh?" A solemn expression finally appeared on the handsome man's face. Then, he answered nonchalantly, "The Thousand Feathers Sect? Their patriarch once sealed a powerful, dead Devil millennia ago, hoping that he could not reincarnate himself. He spent a huge amount of spiritual force but now this force has been depleted. They want to deal with me now. Let them, if they will overestimate themselves... "
Leng Ningfeng shook his head and smiled. "Looks like there is no one in this world who can frighten you a bit." The handsome man smiled quietly. "What can terrify a man who is already dead for a hundred years?"
Leng Ningfeng smiled gently. "Unless it is someone who can play a few notes on the Fuxi Zither, and who is proficient in many formations?"
"Oh? Are you telling me that that man has come to Wuwang City too?"
Leng Ningfeng smiled lightly and did not reply. After a long time, he finally sighed. "It's been seven years. If she finds out that everything you have done was for her, will she think you a devil or an angel?"
The handsome man smiled. "It no longer matters. The important thing is, that a man who should be dead can finally die in peace."
Leng Ningfeng smiled and sighed again. "Well, it seems to be eternal farewell this time. But don't worry. After your death, I will take care of her for you, Mu Luo."
The handsome man smiled gently too. "Thank you, Ningfeng." Then, he watched the gradually darkening sky and said, "Night is falling again... "
At daybreak the next day, Xiao Chen left with Luo Shangyan for the Ancient Immortal Clan ruin, 15 kilometers away. There were many cultivators along the way, most in the Foundation Building Realm, although some were in the Core Forming Realm. He did not see anyone in the Nascent Soul Realm.
As they approached, he began to get more agitated. Was this Ancient Immortal Clan ruin a place he knew millennia ago? The two of them strode quickly and arrived within two hours. Gazing from a distance, they saw a misty oasis before them.
It wasn't strange that there was an oasis in a desert. What was strange was the mist around this oasis. It was definitely not Immortal Qi, but he could not tell what it was. As they neared, they realized that this oasis was far bigger than the Wuwang Wind Cloud City itself. Why had it escaped detection earlier? There was only one explanation. Someone had hidden it within a Barrier using his magic powers.
One might as well call this a plot rather than an Ancient Immortal Clan ruin. Xiao Chen felt a faint disappointment. He was afraid that he might miss the only clue to the millennilong mystery. He might even expose Senior Sister Luo to danger. Yet, there seemed to be a familiar aura inside which communicated with his own, giving him a sense of warmth and intimacy.
Many people hesitated like him. Many stood outside the oasis, or had stepped out immediately after stepping in. Some had even set up camp outside, started a fire and cooked.
"Those who went in days ago aren't out yet, eh? It's so hot. Shall we go in and have a look?"
"What's the rush? Let's wait a bit longer. Wait for them to kill each other off. Then we can grab what's inside."
"Wait a bit longer? It's so hot out here. If we wait any longer, the treasures will all be gone... "
It was now summer and they were in a desert. Xiao Chen's back was already drenched with sweat. Yet he continued to hesitate. Luo Shangyan understood his dilemma and tugged gently at his sleeve. "Don't worry about me. Let's go." Gazing at her, Xiao Chen nodded. "Alright. Don't ever leave my side."
The two of them held each other's hand and walked into the oasis. Once inside, after nearly two kilometers, they seemed to be in a whole new world altogether. The temperature had plummeted. Even the sky had changed color. It was no longer reddish but pure blue, like a lake.
The Spiritual Qi all around was rich and abundant. Ancient trees soared into the sky. There were countless strange and rare plants and flowers. One particular flower towered over even an adult man. Its petals were garishly red, with a strange scent.
For some reason, Xiao Chen found this place unspeakably bizarre. This could not have been an Ancient Immortal Clan ruin as rumored.
If it was, they should see dilapidated palaces and buildings despite the passing of the years. They strolled on unconsciously for another six kilometers. Then, he detected the faint stench of blood. The more they went, the heavier the stench. There were many dead bodies by the wayside.
From the appearances of these corpses, they must have been people who had entered the oasis lately. The wounds on their bodies were smooth and direct. They had been slain by flying swords. It must have been a carnage between two feuding sects. What was strange was that these bodies all seemed shriveled, as if their blood had been sucked dry.
Suddenly, the ear-deafening sounds of a carnage rang out nearby. Xiao Chen raised his head and gazed out. He suddenly detected two bands of fighting cultivators in a wood, each with around 100 men. They were all expert fighters. Flying swords swarmed the sky and everyone was executing magic powers. The alarming upheaval had almost wrecked the entire wood.
Xiao Chen had no idea where these people were from. He was afraid that he might get implicated into the fight and pulled at Luo Shangyan to leave. Suddenly, he heard a voice chanting, "Amitabha... "
Looking back, he discovered a red-robed young monk stepping over in mid-air from the other end of the wood. He landed among the fighters. He had a bronzed complexion and looked muscular and robust. If he hadn't been a Buddhist monk, he might be mistaken for a butcher.
A brown rosary was in his hand as he said slowly, "Please stop, almsgivers. Don't lose your sanity because of the Demonic Flower. There are no magic treasures here... "
Before he could finish, a cultivator with bloodshot eyes pointed at him and cried out hatefully, "You bald ass from Wuyin Monastery! You have trailed us for a day and a night. What do you want? So what if we slaughter one another?"
"Amitabha... " The monk chanted Buddha's name and continued, "Living in the three realms is like living in a burning house. Everyone with a physical body suffers. As a monk, I really don't want to see more slaughter and sin... "
The two men beside him heard his longwinded yabber and pointed their swords at him. "You stinking bald ass! If you yabber anymore, we will send you to see Buddha himself!"
"Amitabha... " The monk shook his head. "Stubbornness is an illusion. Why should you almsgivers cling on to an illusion... "
The people from both sides could not stand it anymore. Before he could finish, dozens of Immortal's Swords soared into the sky, hacking at him.
Greatly shocked, Xiao Chen immediately exclaimed, "Be careful, Your Reverend!"