Library of Heaven is Path
750 Who Are You?
Chapter 750: Who Are You?
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
The content of the book was simply too shocking. Even with Zhang Xuan's worldliness, he still found it hard to believe his eyes.
However, this wasn't the time to touch on that, so he swiftly closed the book and went through the contents once more in his head. After ensuring that everything was correct, he drove his zhenqi and abruptly stopped in midair.
Flinging his sleeves, he placed his hands behind his back and stood silently, not even bothering to turn his head around. For an instant, his dashing profile resembled an immortal departing on the clouds.
"The friend behind, surely you should be contented with following me this far?" His cold voice echoed in the night sky.
"Oh, I sensed the aura of a close friend, so I came over to take a look. On my way, I happened to catch sight of you, and my curiosity got the better of me… However, I must say that you do look rather unfamiliar. Are you from Hongyuan City?" Mu shi replied with a smile.
Even though he suspected that the man standing before him was related to the disappearance of Byzantium Helios Beast, he had no concrete evidence to prove it, so there was no way he could accuse the other party of the matter. Thus, he decided that he would engage the other party in a conversation in hopes of uncovering some clues from his words.
Standing with his back facing the other party, Zhang Xuan harrumphed.
"As a master teacher from Qingyuan Conferred Empire, how many of Hongyuan City's experts could you possibly know?"
"You know that I'm from Qingyuan Conferred Empire?" Mu shi was taken aback.
All along, the other party hadn't even turned around, and he didn't reveal his true cultivation either. How did the other party know that he was from Qingyuan Conferred Empire?
"The convergence of zhenqi at the Yehai acupoint before flowing through the Three Mystic Acupoints, Nihai, Wuwei, and Durang. Gathering the wood attribute spiritual energy from the world to nourish your body, but skipping out on the Huaihai and Longzhen acupoints… Such a bizarre cultivation technique doesn't exist in Hongyuan City, or even in Qingyuan Conferred Empire at that. If I'm not mistaken, you must be a member of the Mu Clan, one of the Sage Clans!" an impassive voice explained from the front.
"Who are you?" Alarmed, Mu shi narrowed his eyes.
There was nearly no one who knew that he was from the Mu Clan, and this included his closest friends in Qingyuan Conferred Empire as well. Yet, the other party spoke of it casually as if it couldn't be any more obvious… What was the identity of the man standing before him?
On top of that, the zhenqi circulation method that the other party had just mentioned was a secret art of the Mu Clan, exclusive to their own clansmen. How could the other party know about it?
Could he be… a member of the Mu Clan as well?
Astonished, Mu shi immediately extended his Spiritual Perception over and examine the man in front of him, only to realize that he was peering into an abyss. The other party's aura was so profound and deep that all he could manage was to scratch at the surface.
Considering that the other party could see through his identity and cultivation with a glance, but he wasn't able to do the same… Could it mean that the man before him was even stronger than he was?
Since when had there been such an expert in Hongyuan City?
"Who am I?" Upon hearing Mu shi's question, the man seemed to have been thrown into an ocean of nostalgia. Eventually, he shook his head and replied, "It seems it has been far too long since my last appearance that those of the younger generation can't even recognize me!"
There was a short moment of silence before the man continued asking impassively, "Who is the current head of the Mu Clan?"
Mu shi was reluctant to respond to that question, but after a moment of hesitation, he still decided to speak up. "The current clan head is my uncle, Mu Yan. May I ask if the senior in front knows of my uncle?"
The current head of the Mu Clan, Mu Yan, wielded immense reputation within the Master Teacher Pavilion of Conferred Empires, so there was nothing much for him to hide.
He phrased his words carefully to indicate his identity as well, in hopes that he could exert some pressure on the other party and gain dominance over this exchange.
"Mu Yan?" The figure in front shook his head. "Never seen him before. However, I did meet with his father on one occasion!"
"Father? You mean… Old Ancestor Mu Tian?" Mu shi froze for an instant before shock embraced every inch of him.
Mu Yan's father, as well as Mu shi's grandfather, Mu Tian, was an ancient relic whose age exceeded 1300.
While Sainthood did alter the fundamental nature of one's existence, allowing one to live a lifespan exceeding that of ordinary humans, 1000 years was usually the limit for most. Never had there been a Saint who had gone beyond 2000 years in age before.
Thus, those who had lived beyond a thousand could be considered an old ancestor of the clan, and they would hardly leave the confines of the main residence.
To have met with Old Ancestor Mu Tian… Could the man be another old monster from the same era as him?
But that was impossible!
Even if those from that era was still living at this point in time, they wouldn't dare to travel beyond the confines of their residence so easily. In order to clutch onto the final sparks of life, they had to utilize all kinds of means… Otherwise, the heavens would mercilessly fall upon them and reap their lives.
While he was unable to see through the cultivation of the man, he could clearly feel the overwhelming vitality within his body. This was unlike the wither that those old monsters suffered from.
"Yes, that lad Mu Tian…" The man spoke deeply, his voice carrying the vicissitudes of life.
"Lad…" Mu shi's eyebrows shot up.
Old Ancestor Mu Tian was a 1300-year-old ancient relic, and yet the other party called him a lad?
Just as Mu shi was overwhelmed with shock, the person in front of him spoke up once again.
"The zhenqi of your Mu Clan is centered around balance and harmony, allowing them to conceal their aura at will. However, your aura feels unstable, and it seems like your meridians have grown rigid. It seems like it has been many years since you have last returned to your clan."
The other party was right, it had indeed been many years since he last returned to the Mu Clan. It was to the point where most of those in the Mu Clan had already forgotten about his existence.
"Your aura feels heavy. Wood attribute zhenqi should be ethereal, but I can feel the heaviness of the metal attribute within it. If I'm not mistaken, it isn't that you are unwilling to return to your clan, but that you were expelled from it," that voice continued.
"H-h-how did you know?" Shocked, Mu shi nearly lost control of himself and plummeted to the ground.
The other party's deductions were spot-on.
The reason why he hadn't returned to his clan after so many years was not because he was unwilling to, but that he had been expelled and he was too ashamed to return.
However… this was a secret he had hidden in the depths of his heart, and he had never spoken about it to another soul before. On the other hand, the Mu Clan regarded it as a huge humiliation, so it was impossible for them to have leaked the news either. How did the man before him learn of this matter?
Did he really guess this much just by peering into his zhenqi circulation?
If that was the case, wasn't the man before him a little too overpowered!
How could there be a person in the world with such discerning eyes?
"As a person who cultivates wood attribute zhenqi, your Yingtai and Tianmen acupoints should have a slight tinge of green, but it is taking on a dark shade of red instead. With just a glance, one can tell that it's the result of conflicting energies within your body. Of the five elements, wood curbs earth, earth curbs water, water curbs fire, fire curbs metal, and metal curbs wood. The only element that could cause such immense damage to your body is metal. If I'm not mistaken, someone must have planted some form of metal attribute energy within your body, thus suppressing your cultivation and talent!" the man in front replied.
"This…" Mu shi's body stiffened.
Every single word that the other party spoke dredged up the secrets which he had sealed in the bottom of his heart, leaving him terrified and apprehensive.
The other party was right, he was indeed expelled from his clan. However, it wasn't that he was framed, but that he had committed an unforgivable act.
The story had to be traced back to five hundred years ago.
Back then, the young and talented him had become a 6-star master teacher before even reaching his forties, making him a celebrated genius within the clan.
He'd thought that with such talent, even at the very worst, he would become one of the core elders of the clan and leave his mark in history. Who could have known that… in one of the experiential training sessions, he would meet with a fair maiden whom, after going through a life-and-death situation with, he would deeply fall in love with.
He'd thought that even if nothing else in this world was constant, their love would be perpetual. He devoted his entire life to her, even going to the extent of imparting his clan's exclusive cultivation technique to her.
But eventually, he found out that the other party was making use of him to exact vengeance on his clan.
His clan soon learned of this issue, and with the crime of leaking out the clan's confidential secrets and bringing an enemy into their midst, he was expelled from the clan!
After leaving the clan, he learned that the woman had planted a metal attribute energy deep inside his body at some point, suppressing his cultivation.
As a result, despite five hundred years of effort, he had only managed to progress from 6-star to 7-star high-tier, unable to advance any further than that.
Ashamed, he had always hidden this wound in the depths of his heart, unwilling to reveal it to anyone else. But the other party was able to see through it just by looking at his acupoints and zhenqi… Even 7-star master teachers didn't possess such an eye of discernment!
Could he be… an 8-star master teacher?
But how could that be?
Beyond 6-star, every single rank progression would become exponentially more difficult, as if trying to surmount a mountain that became increasingly steeper with every step taken. Take him for example, it had been three hundred years since he had become a 7-star high-tier master teacher, but he was still unable to take the next step forward.
As such, 8-star master teachers were extremely rare, and each and every one of them was a well-known figure whose reputation resounded throughout the Master Teacher Continent.
If the other party was an 8-star master teacher, he should have at least heard of him… But the other party didn't seem to fit any of the profiles of the 8-star master teachers he knew.
Furthermore, why would an 8-star master teacher appear in Hongyuan Empire?
"With your cultivation suppressed by the metal attribute energy within you, you know that it is impossible for you to progress any further in your cultivation. Thus, you decided to stop cultivating altogether and spend your time with nature instead… So many years have already passed, don't you want to return back to your Mu Clan and visit your family?" the man in front asked.
"I… Even if I wish to return, how can I?" Mu shi's face flushed in agitation.
His clan was where his family and friends were, how could he possibly not want to return?
But… How could he return?
Putting aside how his cultivation was beginning to decline under the backlash of the metal attribute energy within his body, just the deed he had done five hundred years ago left him too ashamed to return.
"It was fate that I met that lad Mu Tian many years ago, and it's also fate that we met one another. Since that's the case, allow me to offer a pointer then. Perhaps, you might be able to break out of the chains you are trapped in." The man in front waved his hands.
"Pointer?" Mu shi was surprised by those words.
"That's right. While it's hard for you to expel the metal attribute energy in your body due to your cultivation being suppressed by it, it isn't entirely impossible to do it. I'll impart a zhenqi circulation method to you, and as long as you practice it diligently, recovery won't be an issue!" the man in front said.
"You will… impart a zhenqi circulation method to me? Who are you?" Mu shi narrowed his eyes.
In fear of crossing the laws of the world, high-ranked master teachers wouldn't offer their guidance to anyone easily, unless there was a karmic debt involved.
Take Empyrean Kong shi for example, even though he was known to have more than three thousand students, only 72 of them had received his true heritage.
It was the first time that the both of them had met, so why should the other party offer him a pointer?
He might have been a genius when he was younger, but with his bodily function deteriorating and his cultivation declining, the potential he once wielded had already been sapped dry. What was the other party's goal for helping him?
The ploy he had fallen into when he was younger had already cost him dearly; he wouldn't allow himself to fall into another scheme easily.
"Who am I?" The figure in front burst into laughter.
"Are you doubting my identity?"
As soon as those words were spoken, an overwhelming aura abruptly burst from that man's body.
Upon feeling the oppressive aura that the other party was exerting, Mu shi's body tensed up, and his blood ran cold.
Before the compelling might of the other party, the strength which he had always taken pride in seemed as weak as a measly ant's. It was as though, if the other party willed it so, he could be torn to shreds the very next moment.
Hong long long!
Just as he was being suffocated by the immense power crushing down on him, the other party's aura abruptly changed. This time, it felt as if it harnessed the might of the world around him, creating an inviolable authority to his presence.
It was as if the man before him was acknowledged by the heavens, his presence carrying the weight of the world itself. There was no being that was worthy of standing as an equal with him.
"Celestial Master Teacher? You are… a Celestial Master Teacher?"
A thought flashed across Mu shi's mind, and his body began shaking uncontrollably.