Xiao Chen focused his eyes and was on his guard. He asked, "Could you show yourself, sir?"
"Ahem, am I not in front of you...?"
The old voice rang out again. Xiao Chen finally noticed a white skeleton before him. Its remains were more complete than the others.
"It's been a thousand years. There is almost nothing left of my Soul. I can no longer show myself. The outside Barrier had been shattered too. This palace has finally revealed itself to the eyes of men... "
Xiao Chen gave a start. So it was this old man who had sealed the oasis with his Soul power. His remnant Soul was still so powerful after his death 1,000 years ago! This old man must have been a great wizard. Xiao Chen asked, "Please, sir, who were these people who had died here?" For now, this was his most urgent question.
"This palace was called the Shao Palace. They, like me, were servants of this palace."
Xiao Chen's heart missed a beat. In the present world, even a Grand Completion Realm superior would be quite invincible. Yet the owner of this palace was so powerful that he had dozens of Rogue Immortals as servants!
The old man seemed to sigh again. "Young man, have you heard of the Divine Archean Dragon, Yinglong, or the Evil Archean Dragon, Qiongtian?"
Xiao Chen reflected carefully. These two dragons must have been presences from a mythical era, from several thousand or tens of thousands years ago. The heaven and earth must have just emerged from their chaotic, primordial state.
The old man sighed. "Yinglong was formed from the clear Qi of the heaven and the earth. His presence was a blessing to all living creatures. Qiongtian was formed from brutal Qi, causing havoc everywhere. Both these dragons could devastate the heaven and the earth. They battled for ten thousand years. Yinglong was originally a benign dragon, but it was later infected with Qiongtian's aggression due to their long battle. Ten thousand years ago, their battle caused the heaven and the earth to collapse. They had reduced each other's powers greatly. They were in the throes of death. Just at that moment, the great god Fuxi came across them. He did not wish to see them fight again and got rid of their aggression, turning them into the civil and martial strings of the Fuxi Zither. They are the C sharp Major and D sharp Major strings... "
Greatly astonished, Xiao Chen's heart began to surge. He did not know the origins of the Fuxi Zither was so special. The Civil and Martial strings were formed out of two devastating dragons! Even so, the Fuxi Zither had ranked below the Samsara Jade on the Divine Weapons List.
The old man continued. "Later, the great god Fuxi ascended to Heaven's Realm and left the Fuxi Zither on earth. Several millennia later, the Fuxi Zither somehow came apart. Its seven strings were separated from its body..."
Xiao Chen's astonishment continued unabated. The Fuxi Zither had not come apart millennia ago, on the day he was executed on the Immortal-slaying Platform. It must have happened later. He asked, "So, you are saying that the owner of this palace had guarded the two strings for several millennia?"
The old man replied, "You are only partially correct. The Shao Palace existed for several millennia until 1,000 years ago, when a great Devil barged in to seize the zither strings. Our Master would rather die than surrender them, but he was no match for the Devil. He was badly injured. When the Devil failed to find the strings, he killed everyone here in rage... "
Xiao Chen was quietly stunned. Was this Devil's powers so terrible? He could not have been that great Devil from the Xiao Family Tombs, Gu Feng. A lot of things seemed to have happened 1,000 years ago: Xiao Ning sealing Gu Feng in and was later maligned, pursued and killed by the five major sects. Carrying the broken Samsara Jade with him, he founded the Xiao family in the Human World. Why had he done that? Who gave him the Samsara Jade? Were all these linked to himself? He asked, "Please, sir, tell me if that Devil managed to lay hands on the zither strings."
The old man smiled and spoke with great satisfaction, "Hey hey! Our Master knew several millennia ago that the Devil would come. No matter how highly skilled that Devil was, he could never have guessed that our Master was that very string itself... "
"What!" Xiao Chen had not guessed that either. His Master had claimed that he was defending the zither strings, yet he was formed out of the zither string itself. His brilliant ploy fooled everyone. No wonder that Devil could not locate the zither strings. Yet who was that Devil? Why must he try all means and ways to seize the Fuxi Zither?
He was about to ask more about that Devil when the latter suddenly said, "Young man, you have heard a lot from me. Aren't you going to tell me something about yourself?"
"Me?" Xiao Chen pointed at his own nose. What should he say? That he was from several millennia ago, or that he was a former owner of the Fuxi Zither?
The old man smiled. "Young man, it looks like you don't know yourself. Do you know that you are, like me, a remnant Soul?"
"What?" Xiao Chen was taken aback again. He was still alive. How could he be a remnant Soul?
"Hey hey! Looks like you really don't know. Haven't you noticed anything odd about your body? Haven't you realized that there isn't a single whiff of life in this body of yours?"
"Sir, you mean... "
A spine-chilling cold instantly overwhelmed Xiao Chen. He seemed to have fallen into a bottomless abyss. He kept falling but could not reach the bottom. Suddenly, he remembered Ling Yuxuan's Immortal-Binding Rope. After his Soul came out of his body, the Immortal-Binding Rope had come loose. It confirmed the old man's words. His body was without life.
In fact, he had detected his physical oddity for a long time. It did not seem like his own body. It was like a manufactured body, possessed by a Soul.
Every time he suffered an injury, his wounds would heal within an extremely short period of time, without even the trace of a scar. He did not need to mobilize any True Energy to heal himself.
For an ordinary man, it might seem a great blessing. Yet, a spine-chilling cold overpowered himself gradually. His body had been manufactured by someone else. Despite his every effort, a Mind would emerge out from this body after it reached a certain level, to engulf his willpower. So, he was merely helping another person after all!
He was certain that he was that baby in the stone coffin. He was not of the Xiao lineage. Who had been masterminding this? Was it only to resurrect himself, or to make Xiao Chen work on this body?
The heartwrenching chill rendered him powerless gradually. He had died millennia ago. It was not fate which had resurrected him. It was a mastermind. Why did he do this...
The old man suddenly smiled. "Young man, don't be too pessimistic. Perhaps things aren't as bad as you imagine them to be. Might it be that you could not enter the Samsara, so someone had to painstakingly resurrect you?"
"Might be that I couldn't enter the Samsara, so someone had to painstakingly resurrect me?"
A hope gradually flared up in Xiao Chen's heart upon hearing these words. In other words, he was not helping someone else after all. Maybe someone did want to resurrect him? But who could that person be? In his previous life, he was an orphan, with only a doting Master. It must have been her! But why had she refused to see him...