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Chapter Ninety Ninety: Seal, Artifact, Weapon
Li Daoji had no interest in explaining to an enemy about to die. He had to first make sure Zhang Yi was alive. So he did not hesitate and pulled out his sword.
The long sword was pulled out of Cheng Qingye’s body. The broken flesh and blood had a vent and as the sword tip came out of the flesh, there was a soft pop. His last breath disappeared like a deflating balloon.
Cheng Qingye was dead, killed by a Changling swordsman whose name he did not even know.
High up in Celestial Seal Sect, the master of Celestial Seal Sect stood by the window and watched this happen emotionally.
“Why is it like this?” The old man in black robe next to him gave the same exclamation as Cheng Qingye before his death.
Li Daoji did not have interest in answering, but this did not mean that the master of Celestial Seal Sect did not want to.
“First there were seals, then artifacts, then weapons.” The master of Celestial Seal Sect turned his head and seriously to the old man in black robes.
The words were very simple but hard for an ordinary cultivator to understand. Yet this old man in black robes was not ordinary, so at the master of Celestial Seal Sect’s words, a vast historical painting scroll seemed to fill his perception. He saw many scenes in this moment.
First, there were the knotted ropes to record events. Then drawings with charcoal, then the bone engravings. The people who first possessed intelligence would observe the movements of the sun, moon and stars, the changes of the weather. First, they recorded the changes through simple pictures. In the end, someone comprehended the deeper meaning. They found some lines containing how the world moves, and seals were born. They were engraved into jade stone, on gold and metal. They could be used as artifacts. The ancients used artifacts to fight beasts, pray to the world, create rain and help farming. After which, people prospered, forming countries, fighting and killing each other. Weapons used just for killing were created.
The old man in black robes was in a cold sweat. His robes were soaked. He looked at the master of Celestial Seal Sect and said in a trembling voice, “You mean the seal path is naturally behind weapons?”
The master of Celestial Seal Sect looked emotionally at him and said slowly, “Those among artifacts just for killing and joining with a person is a weapon. The blade first has to have seals, this is the seal path. Adding on the many means from sword manuals to manipulate primal energies of the universe, and the vital energy and mental power of cultivators, this is joining. The Celestial Seal Sect is as prosperous as the noon sun, and is based on the seals. But you should be able to see the power of Zhang Yi and this Li Daoji in combining the seal and sword together.”
Pausing, the master of Celestial Seal Sect looked at the old man in black robes who was sweating coldly and unable to speak. “While Zhang Yi is using the ultimate seal essence of Celestial Seal Sect, Li Daoji is not using a seal essence of Celestial Seal Sect. Our Celestial Seal Sect is not the only one strong in the seal path in the world. So I always thought, if Celestial Seal Sect wants to survive, we have to rely on people, and not the seals our ancestors left behind.”
The old man in black robes trembled slightly. He looked at the master of Celestial Seal Sect and could not help but ask, “You say that Li Daoji has combined seal and weapon. He is not using a seal from Celestial Seal Sect, so what is he using?”
“You know, in early years, secret envoys came to Celestial Seal Sect, and then our secretary prospered. But you do not know, after I started to travel and wanted to go see Changling, when I reached the outside of Changling, I saw a patch of darkness.”
The master of Celestial Seal Sect said coolly, “I encountered the leader of the old nobles of legend. It was noon then, but I saw a dark night from him. That was a seal essence he purposefully showed me. Then I knew, there were people among the old nobility of Changling who knew of powerful seals just like Celestial Seal Sect.”
“Before meeting him, I was as stubborn as you, and even more so. But after meeting him, I knew the future of Celestial Seal Sect depends on how our thinking changes. You are too biased towards Zheng Xiu, so I did not let you know. The strength of Celestial Seal Sect did not just come from her help, but also the leader of the old nobility.”
“You have never thought. We are Yan people in the end. Why would I, for the strength of the sect, submit to a woman from the Qin Jiaodong Commandery.” The master of Celestial Seal Sect looked at the old man in black robes and said in a sincere tone, “Senior Sect Brother, you should understand, everything comes from balance time and place … Zhang Yi came to Celestial Seal Sect not just because he is the disciple of my mind and also the arrangements of the leader of the old nobility. From when I saw that person, Celestial Seal Sect never completely followed Zheng Xiu’s will.”
The man in black robes had a hard time breathing and groaned in pain. A dozen breaths ago, he had been standing on this high place of Celestial Seal Sect and thought he had seen far. But now, he knew how short sighted he was.
“It is useless.” He suddenly lifted his head, looking in pain at the master of Celestial Seal Sect. He shook his head.
The master of Celestial Seal Sect stilled. He did not understand the words.
“What is happening in Celestial Seal Sect cannot change the entire result of the Yan Dynasty,” the old man in black robes breathed with difficulty and said.
“Oh?” The master of Celestial Seal Sect laughed and shook his head. “Last night, I dreamed of a mountain.”
The old man in black robes looked in confusion at him, sweat falling down like rain.
“That mountain is a small black mountain, it comes from the Qi.” The master of Celestial Seal Sect continued. “I thought it was a dream, but when I woke, I truly felt cold, coming from yin energy.”
The old man in black robes finally reacted. His eyes filled again with strong shock and disbelief. “The teacher of the Qi, Yan Ying?”
The master of Celestial Seal Sect laughed emotionally. His gaze left Celestial Seal Sect and moved towards the Yan palace. The trees there had started to wither, yet in his mind, there was a scene of old trees dying and new trees born.
Li Daoji held his sword and walked in front of Celestial Ascending Hall. No one stopped him. On the path he walked, there was only Su Qin fallen at the side.
Su Qin looked at this sect uncle from White Goat Cave. He gave a strange and bleak smile. Blood trickled down from the corners of his mouth.
Li Daoji frowned slightly, and gripped his sword harder. But in the next moment, he gave up his killing intent and did not attack to kill Su Qin. Then, pushing open the door, he walked into Celestial Ascending Hall.
Blood was all around the Celestial Ascending Hall. Four seriously injured people were lying in the blood. But they had yet to reach the end. The quartet was on the threshold of death, but none had died.
Seeing Li Daoji push open the door to enter, Zhang Yi’s eyes widened in shock. He thought his eyes were mistaken, that he was having a delusion before death.
Li Daoji nodded slightly to him, and then passed through the blood pools to Chen Xingchui.
Chen Xingchui sighed softly, and closed his eyes. Li Daoji did not hesitate, the sword tip gently and quickly entered his heart.
Chen Xingchui died a painless death.
When Li Daoji came to Zhang Yi and bent down to apply medicine, the latter bit the tip of his tongue.
“Do not be so stupid, you are not yet delirious,” Li Daoji said, seeing his action.
“Sect Uncle?” Zhang Yi started to understand that what he saw was not a delusion before death. He could not help but get excited but still said, “Sect Uncle, save them first, quick.”
Li Daoji smiled with some difficulty. This stupid White Goat Cave disciple was a gentleman and had not changed.
Thinking about the news he had just heard, the thread of smile at the corner of his mouth quickly faded.
How could the disciple, many times smarter than Zhang Yi, have died?
Translator Ramblings: I could swear I had posted this chapter, and then realized this hadn’t been posted when trying to post chapter 100.
- Sword Dynasty Volume Seven Chapter 13 “Gold Dagger”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Seven Chapter 12 “Behead”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Seven Chapter 11 “Armorless”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Seven Chapter 10 “Chu Weapons”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Seven Chapter 9 “Miracle Army”