With that one command, heads rolled! Blood spurted out everywhere and stained the ground red.
Ao Tian Xing realized that in his ninth brother's final moment, all he did was to look at him with a complicated gaze.
In other words, from the moment he raised his son to try and supplant Ao Xie Yun's position as the future Clan Head, he had expected this outcome.
However… he still did it!
Hence, when his head fell onto the ground, he was not resentful. Instead, he was calm but his emotions were complex.
When Ao Tian Xing thought through his decision earlier on, he had been dumbstruck and depressed. Right now, however, he felt as if his attachments to the mortal world had all been severed.
His thirteenth brother, Ao Tian Wu, was one of the more intense ones. However, in the end, all he said was, "Let them be reunited with us soon!"
Ao Tian Xing closed his eyes and two droplets of tear streamed down his face. Thoughts ran through his mind.
"You guys knew!"
"You guys were prepared!"
"You guys knew that you could not completely overthrow me, but why did you still try?"
Now that they were dead, these questions would never be answered.
Ao Tian Xing would never know what his brothers were thinking.
Ao Xie Yun covered his mouth as he watched the executions. His entire body trembled. As he watched so many heads being severed from their bodies, he felt his head going dizzy.
His body swayed and he almost fell onto the ground.
Chu Yang appeared next to him and silently reached out a hand to steady him. He said emotionlessly, "You either win big, or you lose big. They were prepared. Right now, they have no hope left. The only emotional support in their lives is gone. It's either they live out their lives meaninglessly, or they die. Death is a form of release."
"Release… hurhurhur," chuckled Ao Xie Yun wryly.
"Yes, release. Their sons are dead and they are utterly hopeless. All that they had been working on for the past decades became meaningless. If you spare them out of compassion, they will live out their lives like dead people. This is the cruellest form of torture for them. Right now, by killing them, it's actually a good thing."
"While this may be cruel to you who are alive… it doesn't matter because you have to carry this burden," said Chu Yang. Then, he smiled and said, "Fortunately, humanity's best gift, or perhaps talent, is our ability to forget!"
"No matter what happens… we can forget it," said Chu Yang with a faint smile.
He sighed and thought, "I can comfort Ao Xie Yun like this, but… can a human really forgot everything? There're too many things I can't forget…"
"Forget…" Ao Xie Yun repeated this word many times and then, he slowly said, "It's indeed mankind's greatest ability!"
On the other side, the brothers were in deep thought.
This killing was different from others. Watching brothers kill brothers was different from just killing one enemy. It was a vastly different sensation. Naturally, the impact it had on them was strong!
For the most powerful clan in the Middle Three Heavens, the Ao Clan, to carry out this excruciating cleansing, it was even more impactful.
Xie Dan Qiong thought, "When one lives, one can be die just like this, with blood spurting out of one's neck. While it's beautiful, it's cruel too. Like one's life, it'll disappear in an instant… My viburnum is just like that. When it blossoms, it'll bring out the fragrance of death and eliminate everyone's mortal attachments… when my viburnum goes into full bloom, it's not just for appreciation. Instead, it blossoms out of the absence of emotion. No matter who sees it, if my viburnum opens for him, he's dead! This the power of my viburnum
This thought seemed to have come from the depths of Xie Dan Qiong's heart. He felt his hand itch and suddenly, he wanted to unleash his viburnum at this very moment.
Luo Ke Di thought, "I must avoid this cruelty at all cost in my life." As he thought about this, he looked at his brother, Luo Ke Wu, and re-affirmed his decision to leave his family while preserving his kinship ties.
Ji Mo thought, "This will never happen to me and hence, I don't have to worry about it." Instantly, he instantly felt detached from this matter and liberated. All he could think of was how exhilarated he felt.
A sliver of suspicion crossed Rui Bu Tong's heart. He felt his heart beat faster as if the sight of blood excited him. He pondered, "Why did I become so interested in blood after I made progress from the Far North Wastelands?"
At the same time, he felt his blood turning hot as if it was about to catch fire. However, it did not ignite in the end.
Gu Du Xing's gaze was sharp and his heart of the sword was unmoved. He thought to himself, "None of this concerns me. My mission is to use my sword to wipe out all my enemies before ascending into the Nine Heavens!"
He was the most resolute one among all the brothers and was utterly detached from it all. While he stood unmoving with the rest, he still felt as if he was standing apart from them. His sword qi surged uncontrollably from his body and swirled in the air. At the same time, an immense uncaring aura appeared too.
Dong Wu Shang clenched his fist as if he was gripping a saber. Instantly, he felt as if the executioner was him. He thought to himself, "Merciless! The Ao Clan is merciless in killing its foes. Even if they are brothers, as long as they go against the clan, they will be killed mercilessly. This merciless killing is the epitome of being emotionless! Compared to my Sabre of the Merciless Heaven, it is quite similar!"
"However, if they are indeed merciless, why are tears falling from Ao Tian Xing's face? Evidently, he is not as emotionless as I think! He has no choice but to kill! Compared to pure, emotionless killing, this is different."
"This is still in the realm of emotions!"
"Does wielding a saber require emotions?"
Dong Wu Shang thought quietly to himself. He seemed to be inspired.
From this moment, Dong Wu Shang started to abandon his inclination of wielding his saber without any emotion and started to find a way to combine his saber skills with his emotions. Perhaps Mo Tian Ji, who had forced Dong Wu Shang to spectate this, did not expect that this would be his true starting point! Just like this, he was able to foster a legendary master of the Saber Dao.
Heaven's Saber Dao!
Faced with this heart-wrenching killing, all of the brothers received inspirations. From this moment onward, they all started to realize the subtle differences in their personalities.
This was how they embarked on their colorful paths in life!
Mo Tian Ji was normally detached and calm. However, as he saw the sabers coming down and blood spurting everywhere, his thoughts started run wild, "What if one day, these brothers of mine opposed Chu Yang and me? Can I be like Ao Tian Xing? Or will I deal with them like how I dealt with Mo Tian Yun?"
As he thought about this, he felt lost.
He only shook himself out of this state after Chu Yang hit his shoulder hard. He coughed and felt beads of cold sweat running down his body.
Just now, he almost fell into a pit of merciless plotting. He was devoting all his energy to thinking about an imaginary and unlikely betrayal. Right when his thoughts turned vicious, Chu Yang woke up him up.
"What's up?" When Chu Yang saw Mo Tian Ji's sweat-drenched head, he could not help but ask.
Dong Wu Shang, Gu Du Xing, Ji Mo, and the rest looked concernedly over.
Faced with pairs of concerned and warm eyes, Mo Tian Ji's cold heart started to thaw like snow under the sun. His heart slowly calmed and he could not help but think, "I'm not that much better than Chu Yang in terms of strategy. However, I can't control the outcomes of a thousand battles like him. My problem is that I think too much and do not know how to enjoy life like the rest."
Then, he thought, "However, in my calculations, I am able to come up with a solid plan despite the many, tiny factors that must be taken into account. In determining the happiness of the world, they can't beat me! Everyone has their own ambitions. How can we expect everyone to be like King of Hell Chu? Or for everyone to be like me? How do you know if a fish is happy… if you're not a fish?"
As he thought, Mo Tian Ji's mind cleared up and he started to smile briefly.
Chu Yang remained in deep thought. As he looked at Mo Tian Ji, he asked, "Have you thought through it?"
Mo Tian Ji did a double-take and then, he smiled and said, "Yes, completely." In his heart, he thought, "I always thought that Chu Yang's observation of details is weaker than mine. Now, however, it seems like he knows more about me than I do…"
Chu Yang actually knew about Mo Tian Ji than he let on. However, if one were to combine the knowledge of every single person in the Nine Heavens of Mo Tian Ji, it still could not beat Chu Yang's knowledge.
Mo Tian Ji had always been a slightly bipolar person.
He valued friendships and lives. However, he looked down on all forms of kinship in this world and he felt that they were all worthless. While he valued and desired friends, he felt that no one knew him well enough and could be his friend.
Hence, despite being known respectfully as the 'God of the Abacus and Ghost of Calculations', Mo Tian Ji became friends with Chu Yang only because they had similar aspirations.
However, even though he viewed kinship distastefully, he would sacrifice his only friend for his sister!
No matter how upset he was or how uneasily he made the decision… he actually did do it!
Hence, when Chu Yang saw a flash of killing intent appear in Mo Tian Ji's eyes after he witnessed the bloodshed on the execution grounds, he immediately knew what he was thinking.
Which was why he had to wake him up by tapping his shoulder!
If not, once Mo Tian Ji finished his 'calculations' and came up with his perfect solution… no one could stop him from doing what he deemed as necessary precautions…
"It's good that you have thought this through," said Chu Yang as he pat Mo Tian Ji's shoulder. Then, he said wisely, "In this world, there aren't so many things. There's nothing other than life and death. However, with more people, more people will start to plot. If you can think of nothing… then that's true liberation as you can gaze down on all creations."
Mo Tian Ji sighed and said, "You can do that, I can't."
He chuckled bitterly and said, "Someone once wrote a poem which was simply to praise the purity and simplicity of flowing water. Yet, others who came after him turned the meaning of his poem into a lament against romantic relationships…. The poet could not have imagined what others made of his poem…. So how can we be clear about these things?"
"Everyone says that those from the later generation have nothing better to do. However, how can you describe the sensation joy and contentment of discovering a new interpretation of the poem?"
"And I'm this kind of person!" Mo Tian Ji said. Then, he said sincerely, "I can't decipher the meaning of poems but I can analyze victories and defeats. I can analyze what one is thinking and plan for the future. What you can't think of… I can… this is what I take joy in."
Chu Yang said, "That's so exhausting."
Mo Tian Ji smiled briefly and replied, "What's not tiring in this world? How can anyone not be tired? If you must be tired… why not let something you like tire you?"