Library of Heaven is Path
Chapter 1081: Exchange
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
It was previously said that the requirement to becoming a Celestial Saint was to be a Celestial Master Teacher.
But other than Kong shi, there was not a single person in the entire Master Teacher Continent who had managed to receive the acknowledgement of the heavens and become a Celestial Master Teacher. As such, they had always thought that it was all a pipe dream, a solution that could never come to be. Thus, when they felt the aura the young man before them was emanating, they fell into a daze.
Zhang shi was actually a… Celestial Master Teacher?
Vice Principal Ji Yan was not the only one who reacted in such a manner. Other than Luo Ruoxin, the remaining members of the group also had their mouths widened in shock, as if they had seen a ghost.
They knew that Zhang Xuan was a person who possessed unparalleled talent and outstanding leadership, but who would have thought that he was actually a real Celestial Master Teacher?
It was no wonder Ancient Sage Qiu Wu dissipated in shame!
His standing could be said to be on par with even Kong shi himself!
Retracting the aura around him, Zhang Xuan turned to Vice Principal Ji Yan and asked, "So, am I qualified to become a Celestial Saint?"
"O-of course!" Vice Principal Ji Yan hurriedly replied with quivering lips. At this point, how could he dare say no?
If even Celestial Master Teachers were unable to become Celestial Saints, it would be impossible for anyone else to do it.
Seeing that he had managed to convince everyone, Zhang Xuan heaved a sigh of relief. "Let's move quickly then. Otherwise, once the Skyleaf King lays his hands on the old principal, it'll be too late for regrets."
If the group continued dawdling around due to their lack of confidence in his ability to become a Celestial Saint, the old principal would probably be dead before they could take any concrete action. With a life at stake, he could only reveal his identity so as to win them over.
Besides, once he became a Celestial Saint, the others were bound to learn about his identity as a Celestial Master Teacher as well. Since that was going to be the case, it made no difference whether he revealed it to them now or later.
And judging from the crowd's reaction, it seemed like he had made the right call as well.
"Alright, let's set off right now!" Zhang Xuan nodded.
The crowd quickly made their way toward the roof of the Saint Ascension Hall once more.
The Saint Ascension Platform was not releasing any sacred light at the moment, so the Skyleaf King could access the area freely as they wished. They would have to make haste.
As soon as they arrived at the rooftop, they saw the Skyleaf King's Primordial Spirit grabbing the old principal's soul. The statue the latter was housed in before had already been reduced to fragments.
Upon seeing the crowd, the old principal immediately exclaimed anxiously, "Don't come over, I am already a dead man. There's no need for you to make unnecessary sacrifices for me."
Even though he had never cultivated soul arts before, his soul was still able to stabilize significantly due to the sustained nourishment from the sacred light over time. As such, the destruction of the statue did not dissipate his soul instantaneously.
"Shut up!" With a tap of the Skyleaf King's finger, the old principal's voice immediately vanished. With a cold gaze in his eyes, the Skyleaf King turned to the crowd and said, "I thought that master teachers were all spineless cowards who feared death. What a surprise!"
Seeing that Zhang Yinqiu's soul was tightly grasped in the Skyleaf King's hands, Vice Principal Tan Qing clenched his jaws and said, "Let go of our principal! As the leader of the Qingtian Ten Great Kings, a Leaving Aperture realm expert, don't you think that it's beneath you to deal with a powerless soul?"
"Beneath me? Hah! If it wasn't for that, do you think that this fellow would have been able to live to this day?" the Skyleaf King replied with ferocity.
Trapped within the statue, Zhang Yinqiu was unable to leave the rooftop of the Saint Ascension Hall at all.
There were various intervals in which the Saint Ascension Platform did not emanated sacred light, and the Skyleaf King could have easily made use of such intervals to kill Zhang Yinqiu. The reason he had not done so was out of consideration of his standing, and just as Vice Principal Ji Yan and the others had guessed, it would also be harder for him to find a way to escape if all of the master teachers were killed.
Furthermore, Zhang Yinqiu posed no threat at all, and in his current form, living would only be more painful than death.
"What do we have to do for you to release the old principal?" Zhang Xuan asked with a deep frown.
Judging from how the Skyleaf King had yet to make a move after all this while, it was apparent that he was intending to use Zhang Yinqiu as leverage to negotiate with them.
"Simple! Hand over that fellow who beat me up along with the map, and I'll let him go. Otherwise, you will have to watch helplessly as his soul dissipates into nothing!" As the Skyleaf King spoke about the person who had beaten him up, his voice grew visibly colder and angrier.
This was the first time that someone had successfully managed to pull off an assault against him since becoming the number one expert of the Qingtian Ten Great Kings. To make matters worse, his head was utterly crushed, thus rendering his physical body completely useless. Just the thought of it left him so furious that he could explode on the spot.
"The fellow who beat you up?" Zhang Xuan blinked his eyes blankly.
He had thought that the Skyleaf King would use Zhang Yinqiu as a leverage to claim his life, but who could have known that his hatred for his clone far exceeded his…
But thinking about it, that was to be expected. After all, his clone had destroyed the other party's body in a single hit, so it was only natural that the other party was filled with antagonism for his clone.
"Indeed. Hand that fellow over with the map, and I will release Zhang Yinqiu!" the Skyleaf King nodded.
"Very well. We can hand them over to you, but you must swear to the Spirit God that not only will you not kill the old principal, you are also not to lay your hands on us in the next twenty-four hours!" Zhang Xuan said. "Otherwise, if you go after us right after we save the old principal, that would render the exchange completely meaningless!"
Considering that Zhang Xuan had the Seven-colored Earth Jade Essence in his hands, it would not take long for him to achieve a breakthrough on the Saint Ascension Platform. As long as he could prevent the Skyleaf King from attacking them for the time being, he would be able to successfully become a Celestial Saint and slay the latter.
The Skyleaf King was taken aback. "You know of our Spirit God?"
Swearing to the Spirit God was an extremely sacred and solemn ritual of their Otherworldly Demonic Tribe. A vow that was sworn to the Spirit God could not be broken, or else the Spirit God would claim one's soul as forfeit.
"Why? You dare not agree to our request? That's fine as well, but you need not dream about obtaining the map either; let's all die here together. We're all trapped here anyway, so it's only a matter of time before you join us in the underworld!" Noting the Skyleaf King's hesitation, Zhang Xuan immediately pushed his case on to topple the scales in his favor.
The Skyleaf King contemplated for a long while before he eventually nodded. "Alright then, I will make a vow to the Spirit God!"
"Let's begin then." Flicking his wrist, Zhang Xuan took out an altar of the Otherworldly Demonic Tribe. It was the one that he had obtained from the hands of the Jadeleaf King.
Seeing how thorough Zhang Xuan was, the Skyleaf King realized that it would be impossible for him to dupe the other party, and he sneered coldly, "You sure are well-prepared, aren't you? Fine, I shall make a vow to the Spirit God here!"
Innumerable treasures appeared on top of the altar, and as the Skyleaf King began speaking in a foreign tongue, the items began burning up.
All of a sudden, the sky suddenly turned pitch-black, and a massive door materialized right above him.
Everyone's body stiffened in the presence of the door.
There was an inconceivably powerful aura that was being emanated from within the door. Before such massive power, it felt as if even cultivators of their strength could be torn into shreds with just a mere thought.
Standing before such power, Zhang Xuan's heart also skipped a beat.
Back then, the Jadeleaf King had only utilized the altar to verify Feng Xun's identity as a Celestial Master Teacher, so the door had not appeared. He had not thought that the Skyleaf King's vow would call upon such a fearsome existence.
The door slowly opened, and a silhouette came into view.
It was a mere silhouette, but its very presence left the crowd feeling as if their souls would burst at any moment. If the existence were to really descend upon this land, would the Master Teacher Continent be destroyed?
Inside the door was completely dark, making the silhouette extremely vague. However, through his Eye of Insight, Zhang Xuan was still able to catch a decent glimpse within the door, and a deep frown emerged on his forehead.
That silhouette… Where have I seen it before?
However, before he could give the matter much thought, the Skyleaf King suddenly began making his vow, dragging Zhang Xuan's attention away from the silhouette.
"I, the Skyleaf King, vow in the name of the Spirit God that as long as I am given the map and the offender who destroyed my body, I will immediately release Zhang Yinqiu and not harm him and his comrades within the next twenty-four hours. If I ever break this vow, may the Spirit God claim my life and soul as forfeit."
Right after those words were spoken, a brilliant ray of light burst forth from within the door and fell right on his head, entering his mind.
It seemed to be confirmation that the Spirit God had accepted the vow.
After that was done, the door slowly dissipated from existence. With a slightly pale look on his face, the Skyleaf King turned to Zhang Xuan and asked, "How is it? I have already made my vow, so can you believe me now?"
"Un." Zhang Xuan nodded. He was just about to take out his clone and map when Wu shi's voice suddenly sounded in his ear via zhenqi telepathy.
"Something is not right; everything seems to be proceeding too smoothly. Don't you think that the Skyleaf King has accepted our request too quickly? He even willingly made a vow to the Spirit God at our request. Could there be a trap somewhere?"
Zhang Xuan nodded in agreement. "There's definitely a trap somewhere…"
Given the Skyleaf King's superior cultivation, he was in an advantageous situation compared to them. Yet, he still chose to accept to their terms without much hesitation or bargaining. It was truly hard to believe that the other party was not up to something given this bizarre situation.
"Then…" Wu shi frowned.
"The old principal is currently in his hands, so we have no other choice but to go along with it. Besides, he might have his trap, but we have our own trump card as well. As long as we can stall for some time, I will be able to successfully become a Celestial Saint and slay him, thus resolving any the situation once and for all," Zhang Xuan replied telepathically.
Considering that they were in a disadvantageous situation, it was already a huge blessing that the Skyleaf King was willing to accept their terms. Even if there was trap hidden somewhere, they had no choice but to leap right into it.
"This…" Knowing that the Skyleaf King was definitely up to something, Wu shi felt a little reluctant to go ahead with the plan. However, he also understood that there was no other path they could take at the moment.
If the Skyleaf King really made a move against them, they would not be able to stop him.
"Hurry up, don't test my patience. Where is that fellow and my map?" the Skyleaf King said impatiently.
"They are over here…" Without much hesitation, Zhang Xuan flicked his wrist, and his clone appeared beside him.
Since his clone was the one who had landed them in the current predicament, it was only natural that he should take responsibility for the matter as well.
In any case, his clone was forged out of the Nine Hearts Lotus, so even if he were to be pummeled into a flat pancake, even with the incredible strength the Skyleaf King wielded, Zhang Xuan did not think that the other party was capable of killing his clone.
At this moment, his clone had already recovered from his flattened face. In order not to shock the others too much, Zhang Xuan had his clone alter his appearance to that of Sun Qiang's in the Anthive Nest before coming out.
"He's the fellow who laid his hands on me earlier?" Seeing a fatty whom he did not recognize appearing before him, the Skyleaf King frowned doubtfully.
"Indeed. He's capable of disguising himself. He was the one who disguised himself as the Scarletleaf King earlier, too," Zhang Xuan replied.
With hatred and wrath in his eyes, the Skyleaf King raised his hand, and an immense might immediately wrapped itself around Zhang Xuan's clone. With a powerful tug, the Skyleaf King pulled the clone over to his side, holding the latter hostage.
After grabbing hold of his clone, the Skyleaf King did not rush to exact vengeance on him. Instead, he turned to Zhang Xuan once more and asked, "What about the map?"
"It's over here!" Zhang Xuan stretched out his hand, and an ancient goatskin sheet materialized above his palm. Floating calmly, it emanated an historic air around it.
Honestly speaking, the map was not much use at all. So far, all it had done was form a rainbow bridge that allowed the expedition team to bypass the celestial palace and enter the Qiu Wu Palace. If the Skyleaf King really wanted it, there was no harm in handing it over to him.
"Give it to me…" A look of fiery desire swiftly flickered across the Skyleaf King's eyes as he anxiously stretched his hand forward.
"Alright." With a flick of his finger, Zhang Xuan passed the map over to the Skyleaf King.
"Wu! Wuwuwu! Wuwuwuwu…" Seeing that the map was about to fall into the Skyleaf King's grasp, the silenced Zhang Yinqiu panicked. He tried to say something, but the binding that the Skyleaf King had cast over him prevented him to speaking a word.
"Good! Alright, I'll return this one to you then!" With a light push, the Skyleaf King tossed Zhang Yinqiu's soul toward Zhang Xuan and the others.
Zhang Xuan and the others hurriedly rushed forward to catch Zhang Yinqiu's soul, and Wu shi quickly relieved Zhang Yinqiu of his bindings.
As soon as the binding was released, Zhang Yinqiu immediately said anxiously, "The map concerns the possession of the ancient domain; we cannot let him gain possession of it!"
"Hahaha, it's too late!"
Standing in midair with the map in his grasp, the Skyleaf King's excited voice boomed in the area, and the Saint Ascension Hall abruptly began shaking intensely.