Library of Heaven is Path
1169 Bathing Beauties
Chapter 1169: Bathing Beauties
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
The Sorrowless Old Man seemed to have had a clear view of the situation, and that was reflected in his painting as well. Despite being in the world of a painting, the area where Kong shi's silhouette was located was depicted in elaborate detail.
Very soon, Zhang Xuan arrived at the destination.
Before him stood a massive rift with white rocks scattered around the area.
The rocks seemed to be made of a rare material that he had never seen before.
Zhang Xuan was just about the enter the rift to see what was within when Kong shi's silhouette suddenly wavered, and with a light whoosh, he vanished without a trace.
Damn it… Zhang Xuan's face darkened.
He had thought that Kong shi's silhouette would at least be able to last a little longer, but it seemed like he had misjudged the situation.
Logically speaking, the silhouette should have been able to sustain itself for a much longer period of time, but the earlier forceful insertion of a door into the painting had destroyed its artistic conception, resulting in the erosion of its Evoking Vividness quality.
Forget it, at least I know about this rift. Now, I just have to figure out where this mountain is located!
Once he found out where the mountain was, he would just have to find the rift and venture into it to take a look himself.
There should not be many similar mountain ranges in the world, so it would not be too difficult to find it.
Just as Zhang Xuan was about to fully enchant the spirit and leave the area, a thought suddenly came to his mind. Thinking about it, the copper-masked figure seems to be a little too fixated on destroying the seal. No matter what, this is still an eighth level painting. It is bizarre that he is going to the extent of destroying an eighth level painting just to pursue something as elusive as this. I wonder, is it possible that he knows that Kong shi's silhouette is beneath the clouds?
In the first place, the copper-masked figure's desire to conceal his identity was a little suspicious in itself. On top of that, he would go to the extent of destroying such a valuable historical work just to find out what lay beneath the seal…
Wasn't he afraid that he would destroy a treasure just to obtain something insignificant in return?
Did he already know for certain that what lay beneath the clouds was something significant?
Regardless, if he sees that Kong shi's silhouette has vanished after the seal is released, he will surely be suspicious about the matter. Zhang Xuan fell into deep thought.
He could not tell how powerful the copper-masked figure was at the moment, but considering how he dared to act arrogantly before Guild Leader Mu and the others, it was very likely that he was a powerful expert.
If the other party were to learn that he had accidentally caused Kong shi's silhouette to dissipate, would the other party exact vengeance on him for the matter?
Considering that this is a matter related to Kong shi, it's best for as few people to know about it as possible…
It was best to take caution with anything relating to Kong shi, or else, he could very well end up in the same plight as the Sorrowless Old Man.
Since that's the case, perhaps I should make some alterations myself… Zhang Xuan pondered for a moment before creating a brush with his consciousness. He leaped into the air and began to paint.
At this point, he had no choice but to do this in order to avoid trouble.
It did not take too long for him to finish his painting, and he heaved a sigh of relief. He sealed the painting that he had just created where Kong shi had appeared earlier before returning to the clouds to finish the enchantment process.
As soon as he lit up the final spark, his surroundings began to tremble intensely. Knowing that he had succeeded in enchanting the spirit, he swiftly retracted his consciousness out of the painting through the door and back into his body.
Exhaling a mouthful of turbid air, Zhang Xuan opened his eyes once more.
Seeing that Zhang Xuan had come to, the copper-masked figure quickly rushed forward and asked anxiously, "How is it?"
With a pale face and a feeble voice, Zhang Xuan replied, "It was difficult, but I managed to successfully pull it off. However, I seem to have overexerted myself in the midst of doing so. If there were a hundred concentrated high-tier spirit stones before me at this moment, I would be able to recover a little…"
"A hundred concentrated high-tier spirit stones?" The mouth of the copper-masked figure twitched upon hearing those words. "I don't have that, but if you have truly helped me unseal the painting, I'll surely compensate you fairly!"
Even the Qingyuan Empire royal family only had a couple of concentrated high-tier spirit stones in their hands, so how did this fellow manage to ask for a hundred of them so unabashedly?
On the other hand, hearing that the copper-masked figure did not have any concentrated high-tier spirit stones with him, Zhang Xuan sighed in disappointment. Shaking his head, he walked up to the painting and tapped it lightly.
Shortly after those words were spoken, the painting suddenly moved. It arched itself backward, as if a person stretching after waking from a long slumber.
"This… He actually managed to enchant the entire painting?"
The mouths of the crowd twitched upon seeing this sight.
After stretching its back, the painting seemed to slowly scan its surroundings warily before abruptly dashing out.
"Humph, where do you think you are going?" With a harrumph, the copper-masked figure raised his hand, and the surrounding space was immediately sealed.
Half-Leaving Aperture realm!
Zhang Xuan was able to tell the other party's cultivation as soon as the other party made a move. The other party was a Half-Leaving Aperture realm expert!
It was no wonder the other party dared to snub the many guild leaders and powerful figures gathered within the hall.
Upon realizing that its escape route had been sealed, the painting could only return indignantly.
"Allow me to negotiate with it," Zhang Xuan said.
He walked toward the painting and stretched a finger toward it.
As the person who had enchanted the painting's spirit, there was a special intimacy between them. As such, the painting did not avoid Zhang Xuan's finger.
Heaving a sigh of relief, Zhang Xuan relayed a thought to it.
Upon understanding Zhang Xuan's intentions, the painting suddenly shook itself, and the clouds shrouding the mountain range abruptly shuddered, as if a tornado was forming within them. The clouds gradually thinned, revealing patches of the world that lay beneath.
"It's working!" Upon seeing this sight, the eyes of the copper-masked figure and the crowd in the hall lit up in excitement.
This was the first time that they had seen such a seal, and to witness it being deciphered right before their eyes, even the calmest of them all could not suppress their agitation any longer.
As the painting continued shaking itself vigorously, the white clouds on it shuddered more and more vigorously. Before long, unable to withstand the intense shaking, it finally flew off the canvas and fell with a loud splat onto the ground.
Seeing that the seal had finally been removed, everyone quickly focused their gazes on the painting, curious to see lay beneath.
Even Wu shi could not help but pay close attention to the painting at this moment. He wanted to see what it was that would leave the copper-masked figure so desperate to decipher the painting.
However, what lay beneath the clouds consisted only of lush greenery and glistening lakes. As beautiful as they were, there was nothing particularly noteworthy about them as compared to the rest of the painting.
"Wait a moment… What's that?"
Someone amid the crowd suddenly shouted at this moment, and everyone quickly turned their gazes over once more.
By a rift near the center of the mountain, surrounded by countless bizarrely-shaped stones, a natural hot spring could be seen. Several beautiful silhouettes were currently soaking in it delightfully.
Too far away, those beautiful silhouettes were extremely blurred. Nevertheless, with but a glance, it was apparent that they were extraordinary beauties.
The crowd had been wondering what kind of wondrous artifact or astounding secret would be hidden so securely beneath the clouds. Who would have thought it was a group of beautiful ladies bathing? They could not help but freeze on the spot.
It was too unexpected!
"I get it! The Sorrowless Old Man must have stumbled upon a group of bathing ladies while he was venturing through the mountain range, and in a moment of inspiration, he swiftly painted the scenery before him. However, he soon realized that it was extremely disrespectful of him to peek on others while they were bathing, and ashamed by that encounter, he decided to seal away a portion of his painting!"
"I was wondering why the Sorrowless Old Man would go through so much trouble to put a seal on it and ruin the artistic conception of his masterpiece. So, this is the true reason behind it!"
"Hahaha, to be able to paint those bathing beauties with such amazing semblance, the Sorrowless Old Man is indeed a passionate individual!"
At this point, the crowd could not help but burst into laughter.
They had thought that there was bound to be some kind of earth-shattering secret hidden within the painting, considering the effort that the Sorrowless Old Man had put into sealing it away, but surprisingly, what he was trying to conceal was just a dark history.
"This… Impossible! This can't be!" the copper-masked figure exclaimed in disbelief.
He had put in so much effort to acquire and decipher the painting, and yet… it turned out to be just a group of ladies bathing? The vast difference between reality and his expectations left him feeling as if his mind would descend into insanity at any moment.
"There must be another seal within the painting, right? There's no doubt about it—there must be one!"
The agitated copper-masked figure hurriedly rushed up to the painting and extended the consciousness of his powerful Primordial Spirit into the painting, wanting to see what had happened.
Feeling the immense pressure from the elder before him, the painting leaped in shock. He quickly hid himself behind Zhang Xuan fearfully.
"Tell me! Is there still a seal within the painting!" The eyes of the copper-masked figure turned crimson, and a powerful soul reverberation rippled from his Primordial Spirit.
"Enough! Look at how frightened Little Painting over here is!" Zhang Xuan bellowed as he gently consoled the eighth level painting. After which, he turned back to the crowd and said, "Just as everyone has seen, the secret lying beneath the seal is a group of bathing beauties. It seems like the Sorrowless Old Man was peeking on others bathing, and unable to find a way to vent his emotions, he decided to pick up his brush instead. While it may seem a little dishonorable, it is perfectly normal for all humans to feel inherently attracted to beautiful individuals. It's actually no big deal at all, so you need not get so agitated."
Noting the other party's attitude, it was clear that he knew what actually lay beneath the painting.
Facing such a situation, he could not help but heave a sigh of relief for his wise decision back then.
If he had not added in the hot spring of beautiful ladies to fill the void, he might have very well given himself away!
"Pardon me, I was too reckless." Hearing those words, the copper-masked figure took a deep breath and swiftly calmed himself down. After which, he clasped his fist and bowed. "Ever since I discovered the presence of the seal, I have been wanting to find out what lay beneath it. Even though the result turned out to be a disappointment for me, I'm still grateful to you all for helping me resolve this lingering regret."
Right after saying those words, he flicked his wrist, and a pile of high-tier spirit stones appeared right before him.
Even from a rough estimation, there had to be at least a dozen thousand within the pile.
"These spirit stones are a token of appreciation for your help. Please, feel free to take them."
After saying those words, the copper-masked figure turned to Zhang Xuan. "Zhang shi, I am full of admiration for the astounding mastery you have achieved in the Way of Painting despite your young age. Here is a book left behind by the Sorrowless Old Man, named the 'Ten Deciphers of Painting'. Detailed within it are the various painting techniques that he is the most skilled in. I hope that this will prove useful to you."
After saying those words, he swiftly grasped forward and retrieved the painting before clasping his fist. "I'll be taking my leave now. Farewell!"
Then, without further ado, he stood up and rushed out. In the blink of an eye, he had already vanished from everyone's sight.
From the looks of it, it seemed like he feared that others would go after him for the treasure that he possessed, so there was not the slightest hesitation in his movements at all.
"…" Looking at the book in his hands, Zhang Xuan could not help but fall speechless.
The other party had mentioned earlier that he would be handsomely rewarded if he were to decipher the seal, but this…
What the heck was this?
He could not help but feel a little choked up within.
"Is that really… the Ten Deciphers of Painting? Zhang shi, it might be a little presumptuous for me to ask this of you, but will you sell the book to our Painter Guild?"
In contrast to Zhang Xuan's speechless expression, by his side, Guild Leader Meng's gleaming eyes were completely fixated on the inconspicuous book that Zhang Xuan held in his hands.
The Sorrowless Old Man was the most formidable painter from the Qingyuan Empire. While he had only lived for a short three hundred years, he had made great contributions to the Painter Guild, bringing it an era of prosperity.
Of the heritage that he had left behind to the Painter Guild, there was one that stood out—the Ten Deciphers of Painting. It was a painting manual that he had begun working on in his later years. However, he had gone missing before he could finish the book, and mysteriously, the book had vanished from the surface of the world as well. The Painter Guild had devoted great resources into finding it, but there was not the slightest clue to be found.
Who could have predicted that it would be in the hands of the copper-masked figure, and he would even give it to Zhang shi for free!
"You wish to buy the book?" Zhang Xuan glanced at the book in his hand and instantaneously recorded its contents into the Library of Heaven's Path. After which, he tossed it over generously and said, "Since you want it, I'll give it to you."
"I-is this really alright?" stammered Guild Leader Meng as he caught the book with his trembling hands. "Zhang shi, allow me to thank you on behalf of the entire Painter Guild! You are truly generous to give away a book that is easily worth fifty concentrated high-tier spirit stones just like that! I am impressed."
"What did you say? Fifty concentrated high-tier spirit stones?" Zhang Xuan felt as if the world was spinning around him.
"Indeed!" Guild Leader Meng replied.
"Pardon me, but I won't be giving you the Ten Deciphers of Painting anymore." Zhang Xuan quickly snatched back the book from Guild Leader Meng's hands.
"…" Meng Chong.
"…" The crowd