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Chapter 22: At Wu Mountain
The sky was full of stars. It looked especially clear from the mountain peak, even the rarely visible galaxy was reflected in Li Lingjun’s eyes.
The reason this rare conference was to occur at Deer Mountain was due to the unique location. It was possible to see the lands of multiple dynasties from the peak. Also, because of Deer Mountain’s elevation and planarity, the entire world was in sight. Deer Mountain was tall, but most of its peak was flat land. When one walked, one did not seem to be at the peak of the mountain, but on the plains.
At this time, before Li Lingjun, was a small palace set up on a flat part of Deer Mountain’s peak.
The travelling palace was exquisitely slender, making people think of slender waists.
A delicate red carpet led towards this palace that was built in a day. Standing on the sides of the carpet were Chu beauties in palace attire and powerful cultivators.
Seeing Li Lingjun come over, these beauties and powerful cultivators all knelt in greeting.
The Chu Dynasty had been the first to ascend Deer Mountain today. He had already been ennobled as crown prince. There were many existence among the kneeling beauties and cultivators present that he had to carefully ponder and even look up to.
Seeing their respect, and even fear and regret, Li Lingjun felt extremely strange.
He should feel immense hatred towards these people, and even his father-king in the palace. But when he was ennobled as the crown prince, this kind of hate seemed to have dissipated.
Perhaps because he had stayed too long in Changling, that it felt very unfamiliar when he saw the Chu people.
He felt that he was one of the Qin looking at the Chu.
The Chu crown prince was fated to be the future Chu king, but before truly ascending to the throne, the master of the Chu Dynasty was still the old person in the palace. He had to abide by palace protocol.
He needed to go pay respects, morning and night.
He walked into the quiet palace, and disbelief flashed through his eyes immediately.
The figure of the wrinkle-faced emperor was not on the pure gold dragon couch.
“Do not worry. Just like how you never imagined he would leave after ascending Deer Mountain, no one in the world will know that he has left Deer Mountain at this time.” Consort Zhao Xiang, dressed in light robes, looked at his shocked features and said, “He will return before the Deer Mountain Conference starts.”
Li Lingjun suppressed his shock, his gaze still remaining on the empty couch. He asked softly, “Where did Father-King go. What is he doing?”
Consort Zhao Xiang shook her head and answered seriously, “Even I do not know.”
Li Lingjun was completely dumbstruck.
The monarch travelling privately was not logical, especially when his body was not in good condition. The Deer Mountain Conference, that would determine the fate of the Chu and the entire world, was about to start … If his father-king, King Wulie, who still controlled the entire Chu Dynasty had some mishap before the Deer Mountain Conference….
He didn’t even dare to think further because he knew, based on his present capabilities, he could not deal with or control a situation like that.
The Chu King, who was said to be in ill health, his body ruined by alcohol and lust and about to die, suddenly left after ascending Deer Mountain. The strongest emperor of the Qin Dynasty, Emperor Yuanwu, was travelling quickly on the armored ships towards Deer Mountain.
At this time, Ding Ning and Fu Su were entering the Wu Mountain.
Forefather Zhou did not enter the Wu Mountain from any of the Qin forts. This meant they were on a path that ordinary carriages could not travel.
The carriages of the Zhou Family had long been abandoned. Even the three carriage drivers did not follow them into Wu Mountain.
Within the humid and wild forest, Ding Ning swung the Last Flower remnant sword to create a path. Before him, Fu Su supported Forefather Zhou whose lower limbs could no longer move.
The thick mist had permeated Ding Ning and Fu Su’s clothes. Adding on the water dripping down from the leaves and branches, Ding Ning and Fu Su’s clothes were dripping as well.
They were cold all over. The mountain was steep and had no paths. Insects and snakes were also travelling through the forest. They had to keep up their guard at every moment. Even if Ding Ning and Fu Su’s vital energy could flow, this kind of travel could not be described as easy, much less when the pair’s vital energy was sealed, and even their blood flowed slowly.
Knowing that Forefather Zhou would not act before they reached their destination, Ding Ning and Fu Su’s attitudes were not respectful.
“The blood channels in half of your body are completely frozen. Even I can see you will die in less than half a year.” Fu Su was usually kind. But at this time, he was in pain all over. He also had to carry such a hateful person and travel in such discomforting circumstances. Due to all this, his tone was full of scorn. “You are not preparing for your funeral in Changling, and want to come to such a horrid environment. What do you want to do?”
This was not many days after the battle with Chen Chu. Forefather Zhou was slowly releasing his presence at the moment to maintain the dryness and cleanliness of his body. However, his features had withered, and wrinkles had appeared on his skin.
Even if insects hollowed out a tree, if the roots were still strong, the tree could still have a rich crown. But if the roots were wilted and energies in chaos, this tree would quickly wither away.
At Fu Su’s scornful words, Forefather Zhou was not angry at all. The maliciousness in his eyes had long disappeared into a kind of harsh calmness. “We are in about the same situation. Why shall we mock each other?”
“While I do not know why you have made a special trip to this Wu Mountain, if you wanted to come, you could have come long ago. Why do you have to have me come with you?” Hearing Fu Su’s scornful words and Forefather Zhou’s retort, Ding Ning looked back at Forefather Zhou and asked calmly.
Forefather Zhou looked at Ding Ning with admiration and answered. “For you possess the most comprehensive ability I have ever seen. I have met many cultivators with an astounding ability to comprehend, but none as fast as you. In reality, I suspect even if I did not teach you, you will comprehend the star fiend condensing method on the Painting Remnant Scroll.”
Ding Ning did not look back but raised his eyebrows slightly. “A question per person?”
Forefather Zhou smiled unconcernedly and nodded. “Without my teaching, would you have comprehended the star fiend condensing method on the Painting Remnant Scroll that day?”
Ding Ning nodded to show his admittance and then asked, “From your words, you need a person who is able to comprehend well and fast? Why?”
Forefather Zhou looked at his back and said, “You will naturally know once you get there.”
Fu Su was immediately incensed. “You do not keep your word!”
“Taking you to see in person means I am keeping my word.” Forefather Zhou said in a cool voice, “Your talent is not bad. When it is time, I hope that you will not disappoint me. Otherwise, I will quickly kill you, and then return to Changling to prepare my affairs.”
Ding Ning travelled silently for a while before abruptly breaching the silence. “I hear that Wu Mountain is like Ba Mountain, surrounded by mountains; even hunters cannot penetrate deeply. It is suitable for cultivation and building hidden sects isolated from the outside world. Yet, Wu Mountain is too cold and not good for a cultivator’s health. In history, there has never been a spirit vein here, so no sects were ever founded here, and no ancient sect ruins were left behind. But because of the terrible environment that even cultivators do not go, there are many beasts and spirit medicines in several parts.”
“Some ancient sects will discover spirit medicines and useful beasts, but if they are not mature, out of fear that other sects will discover and steal them, the powerful cultivators of the sect would set up powerful formations. This would trap the beasts and medicines, and hide them from the world.”
After saying this, Ding Ning glanced back at Forefather Zhou and said coolly, “Is it spirit medicine or a beast?”
Fu Su stilled slightly as he realized.
Forefather Zhou frowned, a harsh light flashing through his eyes. “As expected, you are the best strategist of Two Level Tower.”
“If you are truly able to help me this time, I will give you a chance to choose.”
He took a deep breath, looked at Ding Ning, and slowly said, “Support the Zhou Family or die. Have you ever thought what kind of power would the Zhou Family, the Xie Family and Two Level Tower form?”
“To grow into the strongest force in Changling, and then have someone cut out your intestines again?” Before Fu Su could even imagine the scene, Ding Ning started to laugh.
Fu Su also couldn’t help but laugh.
He had truly hit Forefather Zhou at his weak spot. Forefather Zhou’s hair started to dance. A terrifying presence swept outwards with him at the center to form walls of wind.
“How much longer?”
Wavering in the wind, Ding Ning looked unconcernedly at the snarling Foreafther Zhou, saying flatly, “Rather than waste energy, how about opening the path for me. That way, we can reach our destination faster. Perhaps I can discern something faster.”
Forefather Zhou forced down the murderousness filling his body. He closed his eyes and stopped talking.
But his body started to release a sharp presence pointing ahead of Ding Ning. Like an invisible sword, it created a path that people could quickly pass through.
Translator Ramblings: For just a second there, it felt like Forefather Zhou was the exasperated parent with two kids on a roadtrip.