Library of Heaven is Path
563 Attack 2in1
Zhang Xuan placed the Soulrouse Incense on the Soul Aperture on Lu Chong's glabella and lit it.
Smoke slowly rose from the Soulrouse Incense, and along with it came a distant and vague song reminiscent of the melody of gods and demons, leaving one intoxicated. If one were to stare intently at the smoke, one would be able to see a faint silhouette dressed in loose robe dancing a unique dance which seemed to hold a certain allure for a soul.
"Return, soul! Why roam in distant lands when your belonging lies here? Abandoning for paradise for sufferings in a foreign land. Return, soul! There is nowhere else you can rest! Giants of astounding stature seek to reap you. In the lands they bring you ten suns sear, metal flows in rivers and stones exist in mere dust..."
The voice slowly seeped into Lu Chong's glabella, resonating with his sleeping soul.
"Whether he will awake or not will count on this!"
As the distant voice grew louder and louder, Zhang Xuan took in a deep breath and drew his soul out as well. After which, his soul dashed straight into Lu Chong's consciousness.
And the next moment, an ocean stretching to the horizons appeared before his eyes.
"How can his inner world be so large?"
Standing in the midst of the other party's consciousness, Zhang Xuan was stunned.
Even with his soul cultivation of Transcendent Mortal 4-dan pinnacle, Zhang Xuan found himself unable to perceive the ends to the other party's inner world.
The inner world of an ordinary cultivator was usually only the size of a pond-Lu Chong's case was indeed extraordinary.
"Where is Lu Chong's soul?"
Quickly recovering from his astonishment, Zhang Xuan remembered his purpose here and hurriedly scanned the surroundings.
A dormant soul would usually be lying asleep in a corner of one's inner world. With the assistance from the Soulrouse Incense, it shouldn't be difficult to wake the soul up.
Flying around the vast inner world, Zhang Xuan soon found a gigantic figure lying amidst dense mist.
Despite lying horizontally in the ocean, it was still as tall as a mountain. The eyes of the figure were tightly shut.
"This... Isn't this a little… way too big?"
Zhang Xuan widened his eyes in disbelief.
Not only was Lu Chong's inner world huge, even his soul was humongous as well. In fact, it seemed to wield even greater strength than Zhang Xuan's Transcendent Mortal 4-dan soul... But how could that be possible?
One must know that Lu Chong was only at Zongshi realm when he went into a coma. How could a Zongshi realm cultivator possess such a powerful soul?
"Could this be... Acquired Soul Physique?"
Suddenly, a thought flashed across Zhang Xuan's mind.
There were physical constitutions in the world which, when awoken, could induce a rapid rise in one's cultivation. Similarly, there were also physical constitutions that could enhance one's soul as well... and one of them was the Acquired Soul Physique.
Just as stated in the name, this constitution didn't come with one at birth. Thus, even master teachers would be unable to perceiving one's plausible aptitude in this aspect before its appearance. Usually, such unique constitutions usually appeared after the host underwent a major event in his life.
It was similar to how some people gained the ability to see ghosts after falling off the stairs, or how some recalled their past lives after suffering an injury to the head and began to chant ancient Sanskrit sutras.
If Zhang Xuan wasn't mistaken, Lu Chong belonged to this category as well.
He was originally just an ordinary person, but the massacre of his clan had diverted the course of his life. After which, he met Zhang Xuan, and to save the latter, he sacrificed himself and fell into a coma...
These experiences had caused a qualitative evolvement of his soul.
"If my conjecture is true, given the size of his soul, when he finally wakes up, his cultivation will probably be stronger than mine..."
Zhang Xuan's eyes lit up.
He thought that it would take a long time before Lu Chong fully recovered from the impact of that incident, but to his delight, this incident actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
But still, if Zhang Xuan didn't possess an in-depth knowledge of souls, this unique constitution would probably have gone to waste... But now, as long as the latter wakes up and is imparted the Heaven's Path Soul Art, his cultivation would surely soar.
Taking a deep breath, Zhang Xuan walked up to the gigantic body and shouted, "Lu Chong, I am Zhang shi. Wake up!"
While Zhang Xuan was attempting to wake Lu Chong, Sect Leader Luo Huang and the others received news of Zhang Xuan's return.
"Since he's back, it's about time for us to pay him a visit and ask of the matter!"
"Indeed. Given how he is barely qualified as a 4-star master teacher, how can he be qualified to hold onto Kong shi's handwritten letter?"
"If he hands it over obediently, we can still choose to let the matter go. But if he decides to make things difficult for himself... we'll conduct a trial on the spot to investigate the origin of the letter! If it is proven that he has breached the master teacher moral code by stealing the possession of an innocent party, he shall be punished!"
Voices rang up in agreement.
Kong shi's handwritten letter was an unparalleled treasure for all master teachers. As leaders of their respective powers, no matter how kind-hearted they could have been before, for the welfare of the masses behind them who were relying on them for support, they had no choice but to harden their hearts.
If sacrificing one Zhang Xuan could lead to the rise of their power, then this was a gamble that was worth taking on.
Sect Leader Luo Huang interjected the commotion and asked, "Everyone, calm down for a moment. Don't you think it is weird how the butler was able to stand before us without the slightest fear, treating us disdainfully even?"
"This..." Everyone suddenly stopped to think about the matter.
Despite their huge line-up, they still ended up being chased away by an insignificant butler. Just by recalling the incident left their hearts boiling in anger. But still, there was indeed something doubtful about the matter. Was that butler truly fearless of death, or did he have some kind of backing to fall back on?
"If I'm not mistaken, that fellow's backing must be the Myriad Kingdom Alliance Master Teacher Pavilion!"
"He probably still doesn't know that the matter regarding Kong shi's handwritten letter has been leaked. Otherwise, he definitely wouldn't dare to do so!"
"I think that it might be the Demon Cinque Beast. That spirit beast is indeed powerful. Even a Consonant Spirit realm primary stage expert might have a tough time fighting with it!"
"With such a powerful tamed beast and his young master's standing in the Myriad Kingdom Alliance, he would be unworthy as a master teacher's butler if he didn't have that much pride in himself."
The group in the room discussed.
Even though the Myriad Kingdom Alliance Master Teacher Pavilion wasn't as powerful as them, they still didn't dare to go overboard. After all, the Master Teacher Pavilion was strict in enforcing its rules, and they could get into trouble if the headquarter were to learn of the matter.
That butler was probably able to keep his bravado having guessed as much.
Hearing the responses from the crowd, Sect Leader Luo Huang shook his head.
"Seems like everyone doesn't know much about that Zhang Xuan. To tell you all the truth, I've had my subordinates look into his affairs for the past few days!"
As the most powerful individuals in the region, they honestly didn't think much of Zhang Xuan. Rather, they were more guarded toward those of their own group, such as the Fleeting Cloud Sect, Cascading Sand Sect, and Frigid Gale Sect, fearing that they might backstab them. Thus, the information they had on Zhang Xuan was severely limited.
After all, who would have the effort to worry about a mere ant when there were other threats looming in the area?
They had never entertained the possibility that this rising star of Myriad Kingdom Alliance might not be as simple as he looked on the surface.
Seeing Sect Leader Luo Huang's grim expression, everyone turned their gazes toward him.
"It's said that this Zhang Xuan isn't even twenty this year, and it was only two months ago that he had passed his 2-star master teacher examination. His improvement is, in the truest sense, frightening..."
Sect Leader Luo Huang spoke slowly. "But of course, we can't exclude the possibility that he had been hiding his true strength from the start to create such fanfare..."
There were also quite a few master teachers who trained to a certain level before breezing through multiple examinations at once.
As such, a 2-star master teacher rising straight to the level of a 4-star wasn't too shocking.
"However, what is worrying is that... despite his young age, he has already attained the strength of a 4-star master teacher. In fact, in the selection round, he even triumphed over Pavilion Master Kang's direct disciple, Jun Ruohuan... Aren't you all curious about his teacher?"
Sect Leader Luo Huang finally revealed his worry.
Everyone fell into deep thought.
They didn't think much of Zhang Xuan before-after all, how could a mere 4-star primary master teacher stand against them all?
A 4-star primary master teacher might be a prestigious figure in Myriad Kingdom City, but to huge sects and influential powers like them, it meant nothing at all.
However, after hearing Sect Leader Luo Huang's words, they realized that they had been negligent.
The Myriad Kingdom Alliance had been lagging behind in terms of resources as compared to the other kingdoms. It had no half 5-star master teacher or Consonant Spirit realm experts... and thus, it had no long-range Tutelage Jade Tokens as well. As such, cultivating a single 4-star master teacher was difficult on its own.
Under such conditions, raising a 4-star master teacher who wasn't even in his twenties yet was indeed an extraordinary feat.
"Based on the news I received, Zhang Xuan's teacher is a half 5-star master teacher known as Yang Xuan."
Sect Leader Luo Huang revealed the intelligence that he had gathered.
According to the intelligence, Yang Xuan rarely appeared in public, and on the occasions he did, it was in lower tiered kingdoms. However, due to the weak eye of discernment of those living in those regions, they were unable to perceive the other party's cultivation clearly, thus resulting in a lack of concrete evaluation of Yang Xuan's strength.
But based on the other party's feats, Sect Leader Luo Huang determined the latter to be a 3-star to 4-star master teacher. However, it was clear that a 4-star master teacher couldn't possibly raise a student as talented as Zhang Xuan...
What that allowed him to make his final evaluation was... Su shi and Ling shi visiting him and leaving respectfully.
To be worthy of being treated with such respect by a 4-star master teacher, it was highly likely that the other party was a half 5-star master teacher like them.
After all, if the other party was any stronger, he would have surely gone to higher tiered empires already instead of staying in an insignificant place like the Myriad Kingdom Alliance. Besides, if a master teacher of that caliber were to visit a lower tiered kingdom, the regional Master Teacher Pavilion would surely be informed to make preparations to welcome him. It was impossible for there to be no news on the matter at all.
More importantly... Those who had come into contact with Yang Xuan didn't seem to note that the latter was capable of 'Spirit Gathering Diction'!
This was a fundamental ability to a 5-star master teacher. Those who hadn't grasped this ability couldn't qualify as a 5-star master teacher.
"Half 5-star master teacher? Since the other party is of equal standing as us, what do we have to fear?"
"Indeed! So what if he's a half 5-star master teacher? Kong shi's handwritten letter is of vital importance to all master teachers... Even if he's a full-fledged 5-star master teacher, I say that we should still confront him for it!"
"Despite being a master teacher, he kept Kong shi's handwritten letter for himself instead of submitting it up to the headquarters. Even if he's a 5-star master teacher, he will surely be severely punished for his misdeed!"
After hearing that the Zhang Xuan's teacher possessed strength of their tier, the crowd heaved a sigh of relief.
An elder asked, "Sect Leader Luo Huang, what's your view on this matter?"
"Based on my intelligence, that Yang Xuan doesn't seem to be in Myriad Kingdom City at the moment. However... to avoid unnecessary trouble, I think that we should unite as one for the moment, obtain the handwritten letter as soon as possible, and decide on its allocation later on. Otherwise... it is likely that none of us will obtain the relic," Sect Leader Luo Huang said grimly.
Whether it would be boiled or fried, they would have to take down their prey first.
It was too early to be talking about the allocation when their prey hasn't been caught yet.
To date, it was still unconfirmed whether Kong shi's handwritten letter was truly with Zhang Xuan, and, if it was, whether it was authentic or not.
If they were to delay the matter and Yang Xuan were to arrive in the city, even though they had no fear for the other party, it would still be unwise for them to go overboard-after all, the other party was a fellow half 5-star master teacher as well.
"Sect Leader Luo, rest assured. We are all mature adults, we know what we should do!"
"A treasure such as Kong shi's handwritten letter can't possibly belong to a single power. At the very least, we know this much!"
"Let's talk about it after obtaining it from Zhang shi's hands!"
The crowd nodded their heads, indicating their approval toward this course of action.
"Since everyone is agreeable to it, I'll start delegating the roles then!" Seeing that he had everyone onboard, Sect Leader Luo Huang nodded his head in satisfaction. "When we're there, I hope that Sect Leader Hu and Sect Leader Bai can curb that Demon Cinque Beast!"
"The rest shall move with me to capture that Zhang Xuan and secure Kong shi's handwritten letter. We'll have to move fast, or else it'll be troublesome if he hides the object!"
Everyone nodded in consent.
Since they have decided to make a move, naturally, they should do it as soon as possible. Who knew what kinds of hiccups could occur if they were to delay the matter?
"Let's set off then!"
After confirming the details of the plan, Sect Leader Luo Huang waved his hand, and the group marched off toward Zhang Xuan's residence.
Sun Qiang stood in an empty residence with a deep frown etched on his forehead.
The young master didn't think much of the group that came knocking a few days ago, but Sun Qiang still couldn't help but worry about it.
It was clear that the other party bore malicious intentions. He was able to chase them away by insisting that the young master wasn't around the previous time, but now that the young master had returned, it wouldn't be easy for him to stop them the next time.
Garden Owner Xue walked up to Sun Qiang and asked, "Where's Zhang shi?"
Zhang shi had saved her herb garden from a huge calamity the previous time. Knowing that the group of people who came the other day would surely come knocking again to cause trouble, she volunteered to stay behind.
"The young master is in the midst of treating Young Master Lu Chong, so you'll have to wait for a while longer!" Sun Qiang replied.
"Alright!" Garden Owner Xue replied. Then, with a slightly worried expression, she remarked, "Now that Zhang shi is back, I fear that the group of men would return once more to look for him!"
"Indeed..." Sun Qiang sighed. "If only the old master were around... There would be no need to fear those creeps!"
"Yang shi... If it isn't a sensitive question, may I ask what rank is he as a master teacher?"
Seeing the immense confidence Sun Qiang had in his old master, Garden Owner Xue couldn't help but ask about it.
"I've no idea as well, but... it seems as though there's no problem he can't solve. Based on Su shi and Ling shi's previous evaluation... it seems like he is at least a 6-star master teacher!" Sun Qiang replied.
"At least a 6-star master teacher?"
Garden Owner Xue narrowed her eyes.
One had to possess a minimum cultivation of Transcendent Mortal 9-dan to become a 6-star master teacher.
To be at least a 6-star master teacher, doesn't that mean that the other party had already reached such a level?
"That's right. I've been with the old master for some time now, but I haven't met a single problem that could stumble him yet. If the old master is willing to help you, the issue with your soul can surely be easily solved!" Sun Qiang said confidently.
He had witnessed the old master's prowess, and there was no problem too great for him.
In the past few days that Garden Owner Xue had been here, he had learned of her damaged soul, so he couldn't help but say that.
"He can heal my soul?"
Garden Owner Xue's face reddened, and her breathing hastened.
Her soul had been injured for some time now, and to cure it, she even went to the extent of consuming the spirit contained within medicinal herbs to make up for her deficiency... But it ended up being futile in the end. If Yang shi was truly able to solve her problem, she would be willing to do anything in exchange.
"Un. However, I would advise you not to bear too much hope for it. Given the old master's standing, he wouldn't help anyone easily!" Sun Qiang shook his head.
With a bitter smile, Garden Owner Xue shook her head.
If Yang shi was truly a 6-star master, it would surely be an exorbitant price to pay to engage his help.
And she knew that she had no treasures that could possibly hold any allure to an expert of that caliber.
"There's no need to think so much into it for now. After all, we don't know where the old master is currently. If he's in the city, I can plead for you on his behalf. Despite the old master's incredible capability, he's an amiable person," Sun Qiang remarked. But halfway through his words, a powerful aura suddenly surged straight at him, shrouding the entire residence.
"Zhang shi, Fleeting Cloud Sect's Luo Huang, White Helios Sect's Bai Kaizhi, Cascading Sand Sect's Huang Qi... fourteen sect leaders and nation elders have come to visit you. Come out and pay your respects!"
And in the middle of those words, more than a dozen figure suddenly appeared in the courtyard. Every single one of them possessed immense might, and their presence felt like an unmovable mountain.
Sect Leader Luo Huang and the others... had arrived!
Hearing the voice, Zheng Yang, Wang Ying, and the others immediately rushed out of their rooms and stared at the group warily.
Gritting his teeth, Sun Qiang stepped forward and replied, "The young master is currently in seclusion, so it isn't convenient for him to meet you. You should come back another day!"
A middle-aged man stepped forward and harrumphed coldly.
"In seclusion? Hahaha, more like he is too guilty to meet us after breaching the master teacher moral code!"
The overwhelming pressure in the air instantaneously heightened. Sun Qiang felt as though a mountain was slowly making its way toward him. Given his strength, no matter how much effort he put in, it was impossible for him to stop its path.
Consonant Spirit realm expert!
At this level of cultivation, one could exert pressure directly on an opponent's soul. Even Pavilion Master Kang wouldn't stand a chance against the middle-aged man.
Seeing the other party attempting to pin blame on Zhang Xuan, Garden Owner Xue frowned and stepped forward.
"Zhang shi is an upright and compassionate man. How could he possibly breach the master teacher moral code? I'll have to ask you to not utter falsehood!"
Frowning, the middle-aged man thrust his palm forward.
"Who do you think you are? Do you think that you are qualified to be speaking here?"
"This is bad!"
Not expecting the other party to be much more forceful than before, resorting to violence without any hesitation, Garden Owner Xue narrowed her eyes and threw out a fist to meet the other party's attack.
The palm collided with the fist, but in the next instant, an immense force traveled through Garden Owner Xue's fist and struck her chest.
Spewing a mouthful of blood, she was sent a dozen meters back.
She could already be considered as one of the strongest experts in Myriad Kingdom City, but despite that, she was still unable to withstand a single blow from the other party.
A Clarifying Turbidity realm cultivator couldn't possibly hope to match up to a Consonant Spirit realm expert.
The Demon Cinque Beast responsible for protecting the courtyard yelled and leaped down.
"You beast, who do you think you are baring your fangs at?"
Sect Leader Bai harrumphed coldly, and along with the middle-aged man from before, he stepped forward and placed his palm on the ground.
A zhenqi net fell from the sky, locking the Demon Cinque Beast in place.
Trapped in the net, the Demon Cinque Beast struggled vigorously, only to find its efforts futile.
It was as if this zhenqi net was made of the hardest material in the world. Despite its violent thrashing, the net didn't even budge the slightest bit.
The Demon Cinque beast was an invincible existence in the Myriad Kingdom Alliance, but its strength was still lacking compared to these sect leaders, not to mention, both of them had moved in unison to subdue it.
"What are you doing?"
Seeing the group injuring Garden Owner Xue and sealing the Demon Cinque Beast in place in just a few seconds, Sun Qiang's face warped in astonishment. In that instant, he felt as though his heart was falling through an abyss. His worst premonition had come to be.