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**Chapter Forty-Three: Instruct **
The Donghu monk could only sigh. He knew that Ding Ning would become the greatest existence of the cultivation world, but the premise was that he survived this trap of a thousand mountains.
“In reality, it is good to make a clean break.”
Tantai Guanjian, who had been silent for a long time, listened to the Donghu monk’s and Ding Ning’s conversation, not daring to interrupt. Now, he no longer asked Ding Ning any questions, and sat down next to him like a junior. He said, “At least, you will learn who is the enemy, and who are true friends.”
“Do not care too much about the life and deaths of other people.” Looking at Ding Ning who had fallen silent, Tantai Guanjian said seriously, “Regardless of life and death, it all started because of fate, but in the end, it is due to one’s choices. Sometimes, what is most terrifying is not even being able to choose.”
After a pause, Tantai Guanjian looked at Ding Ning and added, “Just barely living may not be happier than death.”
Ding Ning forced a smile. He knew what Tantai Guanjian meant, but he could not relax.
Many years ago when he stepped into Changling, he wanted to become the center of the storm, and have the world be influenced by him. When everything major was happening around him, maybe he would feel great excitement and vanity. But after experiencing so much life and death, after carrying so much weight, many of his thoughts had changed.
For Ye Xiao who had created this trap, Ding Ning did not feel any hatred. Even though some things were only accidents and came from good intentions, war and reformation had created misfortune for many people.
“You taught many people how to use the sword. Back then, Changling’s opinion of your sword was just perfect.”
Tantai Guanjian looked at Ding Ning whose smile was fading. He hesitated and then said, “Maybe, you can make me stronger.”
Everyone present knew his meaning. In a trap like this, if there was a way to increase his strength quickly, the chance that everyone would survive would increase.
One person’s vital energy cultivation and their perception of the primal energies of the universe could not be increased quickly in a short time, unless one was on the verge of a breakthrough like the Donghu monk.
The only chance to quickly increase a person’s combat strength was their understanding of their sword manual and sword essence. If one could maximize their sword move’s power, then their combat strength may increase greatly in the short term. This was impossible for other people, but this was coincidentally something that Ding Ning could do.
Tantai Guanjian was speaking of a recognized truth in the cultivation world. Back then, that person had never openly taken in students, but during his many cultivation stages, he had instructed several people in the world. Those people had all become famed grand masters in the future, the most well-known being Ye Celeng, Bureau Chief Ye.
But upon Tantai Guanjian’s words, Ding Ning shook his head. “In reality, there is no perfect sword essence, but no one can be truly and absolutely perfect in any matter. Flaws will always exist, but when one reaches the limit in a certain area, the flaws will be covered up.”
Tantai Guanjian could hear that this was Ding Ning’s sentiment, but he could not understand, and frowned.
“Sword essence, sword essence, the essence is the important part. The essence comes from one’s own heart, so the key is that one has to believe.” Ding Ning looked at his confused eyes and said softly, “In the records of cultivators, there is usually a story, an old woman recited an energy refinement method like it is a scripture. She was not very literate and even said many characters wrong, she did not understand much of the meaning at all. But she kept on reciting for decades, and in the end, she formed vital energy. One day, a cultivator passed by. Hearing that she was reciting wrong, they patiently explained to her out of pity and corrected her mistakes. They thought that the old woman would get stronger, but in the end, the old woman regressed.”
Pausing for a few breaths, Ding Ning looked at Tantai Guanjian whose eyes were lighting up. He said, “There are many versions of this story, but the meaning expressed is the same. Your sword essence is for extreme speed. It is already very perfect. If there is anything lacking, I fear it is the last bit of confidence. You do not need my instruction, you just need someone like me to give you affirmation so you will trust yourself more, and erase the last bit of doubt from your heart.”
“You are already at the extreme. If your heart believes that this is the extreme as well, your sword will be a bit faster.” Ding Ning smiled faintly and looked at Tantai Guanjian whose expression was changing. He said, “If this is said to be instructing, does this count as instruction?”
Tantai Guanjian’s mind was greatly affected. The air around him rippled, but in the next moment, his expression grew absolutely calm. Then he stood up, and bowed deeply to Ding Ning who was still seated. He said softly, “This is the most useful instruction.”
The Donghu monk sighed with emotion.
At this time, the sky was growing pale. The pale white color was not because it was close to morning, but a light created by powerful energy disturbances.
Other than the unconscious Fu Su, Ding Ning and the others looked up. This meant that people were coming. To be able to create such a scene and enter at this time would be a realm seven grandmaster.
Was this a strong aid, or the start of a new battle?
Ding Ning took a deep breath and waited calmly.
Tantai Guanjian’s eyes grew calm, just as humble as before, but in the eyes of the Donghu monk, he had a completely different presence than before.
The white light grew brighter. When it formed into a white cloud that glowed by absorbing the night lights, a figure appeared in the gap of the thousand mountains above their heads.
This was a middle aged man dressed in blue robes. He did not carry any sword, but his skin seemed to be like the moon, giving off a clean and glowing light.
This middle aged man’s features were very gentle. What was most eye-catching was that there was a silver line between his eyes, like a horizontal eye.
This middle aged man floated down. He examined Ding Ning and Zhangsun Qianxue, the respect in his eyes growing. He became more and more excited, and it seemed that he would bow before he even landed.
But at this time, Ding Ning’s eyebrows rose slightly. A muffled sound came from the ground deep down, and then there was a string of sounds from branches breaking like something was being torn up in pieces. The ground bulged up, like something enormous was attempting to burrow out from the ground.
The Donghu monk was slightly surprised. Tantai Guanjian’s eyebrows rose, and now, he sensed a dark presence he was very displeased by.
The middle aged man who had not yet landed had not expected such a change, and his expression froze.