This chapter has been brought to you by me and larkspur.
Chapter Thirty-Two: An Old Letter
“We need to go there and see.” Ding Ning thought for a moment, and then said to Qing Yaoyin who was sitting on the soaring snake saddle next to him.
Following where Ding Ning was pointing, Qing Yaoyin was surprised. “Near the Qiyun Mountain?” he asked with uncertainty.
That place was not in the Chu or the Qin. He was not even on their path to Jiaodong Commandery, and was within the Qi Dynasty border. While they could see it, it was very far. From there to Jiaodong Commandery, it was not just a little bit of time. Also, because the Qi Dynasty and Zheng Xiu had worked together, there could be unexpected surprises.
“What is there?” Zhangsun Qianxue asked Ding Ning with an odd expression.
“There is a sect which uses a seal stone method. They are skilled in using some flint and thunder stone powder to make seals which can create thunder and fire. But their vital energy method is average. They rely too much on material items, and they are average in fighting. Adding on these seals has some natural power against ghostly things, they are discriminated against in the Qi. After a long time, the disciples of this sect are not much different from the con men who say that they can expel ghosts in the eyes of many Qi people.”
Ding Ning looked at her and explained, “Back then when I studied the cultivations of the different dynasties, I coincidentally came into contact with some of their thunder seals. Back then, I felt that their seals had power. If there was a powerful vital energy method, the thunder seals they will create will be tens and even hundreds of times stronger. Later, I found some time to study, and I found a suitable method.”
Hearing this, Zhangsun Qianxue, Qing Yaoyin, and even Gongyang Chuxin who did not understand him very much were moved and reacted. Back then, he had found a suitable cultivation method, but before he could act, Wang Jingmeng encountered the change in Changling and was killed.
“The Thunder True Fire, the Zhao Fire God Palace’s secret method. This sect of the Qi is unique, the vital energy method must have both thunder and fire. Only methods where the vital energy can transform thunder and fire is suitable. I spent a lot of effort to get this method from the Fire God Palace. After some minor change, it should greatly suit this Qi sect. But before I contacted this sect, there was the change.”
Ding Ning did not conceal and as he talked, his emotions calmed. “Ten years is a long time, especially when there are times I could not do a thing. I worried that I would forget some crucial things. So I kept on reminding myself that other than some cultivation experiences, there are also the mistakes I have made in cultivation in the past. This way, when I re-cultivated, my progress would be faster. Other than this, I had to remember some of the important cultivation methods I once saw, including my methods against the enemies.”
“There was once a time I thought Lin Zhujiu and the others were dead. That way, if I wanted to get revenge, I could only rely on my cultivation experiences and those powerful sword manuals.”
“In the past, I thought if I returned to realm seven, there would only be a few people in the world able to kill me. At least, if I am defeated, I can flee. If I can remember some things, I can choose people to teach, and maybe rebuild a Ba Mountain Sword Field.”
Ding Ning smiled scornfully at himself. “However, Yuanwu reached realm eight, and after seeing Ye Xiao’s sword formation, I feel that it is not so simple.”
Gongyang Chuxin’s hands were trembling. While he had been the best of the youngest generation of the Gongyang Family, and he had extraordinary intelligence and knowledge, each thing that Ding Ning said surpassed the world of cultivators, but also seemed so matter of fact.
Now, he knew that there was Lin Zhujiu and the others who could help. Ding Ning seemed to be carrying the treasure hoards of the Ba Mountain Sword Field and many cultivation places. It would be very simple for him to teach. However, the greatness in Ding Ning’s calm words still shocked him.
Right now, Ding Ning looked the same age as him. But after being in contact with him for a longer period of time, he ignored this, and his admiration towards the other grew.
There was a temple on the mountain. It was very small, and somewhat in ruins. There were flowers and trees, but no one there, so they grew uncontrollably.
There was a plaque on the entrance to the temple that was mottled. Even the gilded characters were almost invisible. One needed to look closely to see the words Thunder Fire Temple.
There was only a middle-aged Daoist in the temple.
This Daoist was thin, had yellowed skin, and his yellow robes were so worn from washing they were almost white. It could be seen that he lived simply but not easily. However, his expression was dignified. The worn places on his robes were carefully sewn. He was very clean, his hair neat and no dirt in his nails. So even when he was carrying water from a well in the temple to water the vegetable garden, he seemed very reserved.
Suddenly, this middle-aged Daoist heard some wind and thunder. He looked up strangely. As he did so, the entire temple was shrouded by an enormous shadow. His pupils contracted, and his robes were soaked by water.
He sensed the powerful energy vibrations. Looking at the scales which peeked out of the clouds, his fingers let go of the heating red seal papers in his sleeve. In the next moment, he even relaxed his body and just waited silently.
“I do not know if this is the sect of the past, and if you know what has happened recently. If you are from the sect back then, in the months before Yuanwu’s ascension, I once wrote a letter to here.”
The wind and thunder was still in the sky but a voice was sounding by his side.
This middle-aged Daoist unconsciously turned his head. In his sight, Ding Ning appeared, and because of the voice, he thought of some amazing things. He took a deep breath, and bowed deeply without any hesitation. His stiff fingers went into his sleeve and took out a yellowed cowhide paper.
“If you believe, come to Changling,” Ding Ning calmly said.
It was the last sentence of the old letter.
“My master did not reach Changling before hearing of your death, and regretted it.” This middle-aged Daoist did not stand up from his bow, his voice trembling.
Ding Ning nodded and said, “Since this is the case, I am going to Jiaodong Commandery, you can follow.”
The Daoist rose, bowed again, his eyes wet. He said, “Qi people believe in ghosts. Please allow me to go to my Master and light a stick of incense to tell him of this matter.”