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“Master?”

“Hmm?”

Han De realized Jin Shu was still waiting.

<Yes, it’s your bloodline. I assume you already have an idea why you are here.>

After the prompts from the System, Yao Qing disappeared without a trace, and Long Ai immediately brought Han De and Jin Shu into a cultivation chamber. Judging from hundreds of different never-seen-before vine species covering all walls, Han De guessed that this was inside Jin Shu’s palace.

‘Planes may collapse? May? Collapse?’

Did the simple act of upgrading his disciple’s potential had to be this vicious?

Han De sighed and shook his head in dismay. Yao Qing’s fate was now up to herself.

If entire planes collapsed because of the token, there was nothing he could do at this point anyway.

‘Concentrate on Jin Shu. Come on. Don’t jinx it. Just one more, and that token will be in my hands. I mean, the token will be in my inventory.’

As he completely focused on Jin Shu’s awe-inspiring green eyes and delicate features that threatened to awaken unwise emotions, Han De, once again, thanked whatever deity that was listening from the bottom of his heart.

‘Thank F#$%&@# god she doesn’t have a beauty mark. Or freckles.’

The situation wasn’t as bad as the first time he transmigrated. Or reincarnated? In any case, thanks to constant exposure to a variety of jade beauties, Han De’s resistance had gone up significantly. Standard issue jade beauty features were slowly starting to blend with each other.

He took out the jade box he got from Song Nuan. Another old monster, but with emerald green eyes this time, just like Jin Shu.

‘How could I forget, Jin Shu had a parasitic bloodline before. Maybe she wouldn’t want to awaken a bloodline this soon.’

Seeing her master’s uncharacteristic reluctance, Jin Shu sent a voice transmission of her own.

<Master… Are you alright?>

It took Han De a moment to register Jin Shu’s question.

‘Am I all right? Oh, yes, why, I am fine.’

Naturally, he couldn’t leak his sarcasm out. Especially not to his disciples.

<Whether you choose to awaken your bloodline now, or in the future, I will assist you with however I can. Though your constitution is in sync, the danger this time is still far bigger.>

Jin Shu stared at the incredibly tall woman, then back at her master. She could see some resemblance, the woman was clearly a higher up from the Long family.

Was the Long family forcing their master to do something?

Jin Shu threw that thought away almost immediately. No one could make their master do something he didn’t want. He had the Long family ancestor’s support, who would dare to calculate against him now?

Long Ai glanced at Jin Shu for a moment, then turned her attention back to Long De.

By the process of elimination, Jin Shu arrived at a stifling conclusion.

Her master, Han De, was reluctant, because he was worried about his disciples!

After his disappearance, Jin Shu and Yao Qing had made an effort to cheer up Ning Bi and avoid mentioning their master as much as possible. Yao Qing was always unusually composed, and Jin Shu herself was more mature for her age due to her status in the Jin family, but Ning Bi was still a child in many ways.

While trying to protect Ning Bi’s mental wellbeing, Jin Shu neglected to resolve her own emotions. This realization came to her as she was watching the unwilling body language of her master.

He did everything he could just to remove her parasitic bloodline! Almost suffered Qi deviation just to give them bloodlines! When the leviathans attacked, he did not hesitate to send his disciples away while drawing the fire on himself. His ‘final’ act was to awaken legendary body constitutions!

Other than her parents, Shu of the Jin family had never seen someone act so selflessly towards her. Even a master-disciple relationship would consider benefits. But their master didn’t.

His selflessness was both heartwarming, and somehow infuriating at the same time.

So much so that Jin Shu sent a voice transmission without thinking.

<This disciple is ready.>

Han De nodded at Jin Shu’s confidence. Of course. Of course, an MC would have confidence in their talent/comprehension/etc, to the point of recklessness. Of course.

‘Well, she does have just the right thing to make her confident though.’


[Immune to external mutations.]


‘External mutations… should cover the seed, right? Song Nuan said it would cause endless mutations. That should be external mutations, right? Internal mutation should be the ones caused by the bloodline…?’

Han De wasn’t sure. He felt like the effect was so poorly defined, everything depended on one’s interpretation.

<|Hers is the only one without any risk. But awakening that bloodline will change her fate in ways that even I can’t predict. She…|>

Han De’s head turned sharply towards Long Ai.

<|… will become a horrifying expert.|>

‘… You are very close. It was Nameless Horror, but I will give you +5 points for trying.’

Which one was worse, The Purifier of Planes? Or The Nameless Horror?

‘OK, this is fine. She will succeed. She was the Nameless Horror to begin with. Nothing’s changed. This is a home run without me doing anything. Just relax.’

As Han De’s attention went back to Jin Shu, the latter noticed his relaxed demeanor. Perhaps the mysterious Long family elder gave a guarantee to him?


[Profound Points: 499974 -> 499874 (-100)]

[Activating Bloodline Awakening Token on disciple Jin Shu]
[Bloodline: Lifebringer]
[Target Confirmed]

[Unsupervised Mode Activated]

[Calibrating...]
[...]
[Calibration Complete]

[Seed of a previous cycle detected]
[Approximate Age: 0.0274 cycles]

[…]

[Mutation baseline: Inapplicable]
[Mutation rate: Inapplicable]
[…]
[…]
[…]

[Priority Override]

[Warning: - ]
[Warning: - ]

[…]
[…]

[Compatibility Levels Met]

[Tribulation Triggering Chance: 0%]
[Secondary Tribulation Triggering Chance: 0%]
[Tertiary Tribulation Triggering Chance: 0%]

[Commencing Optimum Awakening State]


‘Warning? Warning what? Warning WHAT?!’

Han De inadvertently stared at Long Ai. Didn’t she just say Jin Shu had the least risk? Then why did the future Nameless Horror get not one but two warnings?! They were empty warnings too!

Long Ai caught the changes in Jin Shu, but this time she didn’t gain any further insights. The perception of her current body was too low. The alternative, scrutinizing Long De’s soul, was not only out of question, but also dangerous!

Han De swallowed his anxiousness and sent the jade box towards Jin Shu through a simple telekinesis spell. Suddenly he didn’t want to be near that seed.

<Open it after we leave. You will know what to do.>

Just as he expected, Long Ai teleported him away as if she were in a hurry.

‘Man, I really hope my disciples wouldn’t have to go through any more extremely dangerous events. It would be amazing if they had smooth sailing from now on, isn’t that right System?’

Naturally, there was no response.

Han De realized he could take extreme decisions without a worry in the world, if the said decision didn’t involve anyone he knew. When it came to his disciples though, he realized how he faltered. Even if the risks were low, hesitation grew as he got closer to the inevitable. He had to distract himself with Xianxia references just to proceed!

‘It’s fine. They’ll be fine. I’ll be fine. We’re all going to be just fine.’

The more Han De tried to convince himself the more anxious he became.

“So, what now?”

Even if he couldn’t see Long Ai, her energy signature was the biggest and ‘loudest’ thing that his Reality Sense could pick up. She was just behind, silently waiting.

|Ning Bi and Jin Shu have strong fates, failure is impossible for either of them. Yao Qing… remains to be seen.|

The blue-eyed disciple had left this reality. It seemed that ‘It’ cooperated with the ruler of heavens. To be more precise, ‘It’ cooperated with Long De’s intent. However, whether Yao Qing could return safely and unaltered, was uncertain.

Long Ai put Han De to deep sleep, then sent him back to his chambers.

Thanks to Yao Qing’s departure, she was able to reconnect with her main body for the briefest of moments. If she weren’t paying utmost attention, she wouldn’t have been able to grasp the opportunity.

* * *

Far away from the Whispering Realms, in a completely removed and distant reality, the main body of Long Ai opened her eyes.

{It seems I’ve been too lenient…!}

The compressed message she got from her clone contained only essential information.

The Shen family attacked Long Juan, Long Ai’s granddaughter. They even tried to kill her only great-great-grandson!

Though it was hard to kill a family of cockroaches, sometimes that was for the better. They wouldn’t be able to suffer as much if they died too quickly.

This time, Long Ai's main body started to move. There was no way she could satisfy her bloodlust with mere clones.

* * *

Far away from the Whispering Realms, and even farther away from Long Ai’s main body, at the height of the first Heavenly Realm, stood Tian Guo, the ruler of heavens.

In the old days, he could spend several trillion years in cultivation as he kept worrying about the quality of the harvest. Yet, nowadays, when he had a proven pipeline that produced ‘protagonists’ non-stop, he could hardly take a few days off!

He was seriously contemplating cutting this cycle short. It was already getting late, and he had an ample harvest so far. His ‘credit’ score was good enough. So what if he closed up shop and took a rest? So what if he wiped the slate clean a little early?

Then, he felt a massive shift in energy from far away.

‘S#$%. Really? Who pissed off that crazy B#$%&?!’

Tian Guo was about to send an edict, but he paused.

Wasn’t this a good thing?

Unlike the upstarts, Long Ai’s origins had complications. She could, in theory, destroy dozens of lower heavens and all the realities bound to them, just in a fit of rage! And maybe more. Much, much more!

{Hmph. We shall allow it.}

Tian Guo turned his attention back to the girl whose soul he brought back through time. He… really didn’t expect to see her! Not to mention in such a state!

Was the shapeless being using the power of heavens as a stepping stone?

{This bloodline feels familiar. Where did I see it before?}

Normally, it would’ve been an easy matter to modify the bloodline itself. Tian Guo had been The ruler of heavens for thousands of cycles! Even if there was a maximum limit to his power, his knowledge was unmatched.

Unfortunately, the bloodline turned out to be rather tyrannical. And hostile too. If he exposed his aura, it would definitely attempt something.

{I could integrate it into a unique system…}

Tian Guo’s favorite protagonists were the heaven-defying types. Even after countless cycles, his tastes didn’t change. This… Yao Qing… and the bloodline she had, both had tremendous potential in this aspect!

Though it was unwise to touch her now, that didn’t mean he would leave her alone. She was defying him right now! In fact, she was violating exactly 108 laws that Tian Guo wrote himself. He had to be given some face!

Tian Guo touched Yao Qing’s fate, tied, and untied a few knots. The girl’s luck wasn’t good, so he increased it. Her talent was too good, so he decreased it. Finally, he connected a white thread to himself. In time, its color would change, preferably to red, and put an end to the unfavorable fate of Yao Qing.

As a hunter and conqueror, Tian Guo usually detested such methods, but this time he felt that direct intervention was called for. Besides, he didn’t turn the thread directly to red, and still gave a chance to the girl.

This way, Yao Qing would become his connection to that shapeless creature.

Tian Guo's survival instinct was forged and refined through countless cycles. He knew when to advance and when to retreat. That’s why his reign as the Ruler of Heavens has been absolute. There was no shortage of would-be usurpers on every cycle, but Tian Guo outlived every single one of them.

* * *

Inside the Black Heart Pavilion, underneath the noses of the Ren family, Feng Xiaoli was drinking alone in an unassuming corner.

Days after his clan, and sect were dissolved, he shouldn’t have had time to relax like this. All of the Heavenly Pearl realms were looking for him. All of his friends, all of his enemies, all of his lovers. They all wanted him to die a miserable death.

It was all thanks to Zhang Shiming, his master, that he was able to get away by using an ancient gateway. Their secret was too profound for Feng Xiaoli to handle, and even his master had to pay a price. That’s why Zhang Shiming was sleeping right now, just like the time when Feng Xiaoli escaped his home.

“… elling you, they are being wiped out-”

“Hush. Don’t speak of such things here.”

“Brother, you don’t understand. We need to leave. Now!”

Whisperings came from an obviously agitated man, speaking to the owner, who was half frowning and half concerned.

Feng Xiaoli was constantly operating the Wind-Ears Scripture taught by his master. Though no one seemed to know of his identity here, he still wanted to be safe, rather than sorry.

“… family, also the Red Flame Sect, both disappeared, completely. I heard one of the major families had a flag planted on their land…”

“Little brother, we are simple bystanders, not even worth a second look-”

“… say so, but… … -screamed! They say it was a big family from beyond the heavens.”

Feng Xiaoli’s body stiffened in an instant. Did they find him after all? Were they killing innocents just to get back at him?

“… ather-”

“Big brother, father wouldn’t have wanted us to…”

Though Feng Xiaoli tried to listen, he couldn’t hear anything else. Both the owner and the agitated man’s voices disappeared. There weren’t too many people inside the pavilion, and only a few among them seemed to have noticed the owner’s absence.

Feng Xiaoli, being a Core Formation expert, had keen intuition. Right now, against his better judgment, that intuition was telling him to stay.

“…senior Yuan, this is the place.”

The voice came from the entrance. Simply by listening, he realized the man that spoke had profound cultivation. His words held power, just like his old sect master. And yet, the man’s tone was subservient.

If his master were here, he would probably tell Feng Xiaoli to stay cautious.

‘That man isn’t simple, isn’t that right master?…’

There was no answer to his question. But someday, Feng Xiaoli would hear his master’s voice again. He would definitely find a way!

“… eave us…”

* * *

Unlike the past, there were no fluctuations of the void, or disturbances around the veil. No one, save for one person, would be able to see the black void overlooking both Yuan Zemin, and Feng Xiaoli.

{Ugh… Finally…}

{The idiots are together…}

{Hahahahaha… It was worth shielding them both!...}

{Hey, little Xiaoli, what if this man knows how to awaken your precious little master?}

A disturbance caught the attention of the black void. Far away, someone had the intent to scheme!

* * *

After the Long family banquet, nine higher beings arrived at a remote, unassuming subrealm within the boundaries of the Whispering Realms.

None of them dared to use clones, because such methods could be intercepted. None of them dared to representatives, because the purpose of their meeting involved another higher being.

When the tenth higher being finally arrived, all of them started weaving restrictions around the subrealm. All ten even openly used primordial artifacts. Not the so-called trinkets of the ancient era, but real artifacts that survived the wrath of the progenitor.

Power coursed through the subrealm, gave birth to a multitude of worlds and spirits. Within a single breath, entire sub-universes came into being, and perished. All in an effort to hide the conversation of these higher beings!

Finally, once all 10 were reasonably confident, they silently stared at the higher being that arrived the last.

Bai Shui, one of the founding members of the Purple Clouds Pavilion, broke his silence in response.

|Lin Feizhou should no longer be a member.|

Purple Clouds Pavilion was a collection of ancient higher beings. Their purposes differed, because they all had different cultivation systems. Their overall goal though, was the same. To surpass the great barrier.

Each member had spent their lives overcoming countless tribulations to reach their current state. They had ascended to higher realms thousands of times before. As they climbed through the ladder of existence, each subsequent step became harder. Each step represented a fierce struggle, where one could fail at any time!

Hence, the nine higher beings frowned. Anything that could stand in their way was an unacceptable compromise. Lin Feizhou had close ties with the Primordial families; his word carried a weight that the Purple Clouds Pavilion wasn’t willing to lose!

Bai Shui shook his head at their silent disapproval.

|The banquet didn’t have any restrictions. The moment you leave this secret realm you will be able to confirm the truth. The Long ancestor personally assigned Long Juan to exterminate anyone that had ties to the Shen’s.|

Nine higher beings’ frowns grew deeper.

The eldest of the group, the survivor of the unmentionable war, Ma Hongfu, narrowed his eyes. Though this gesture was enough to convey his intent, speech was an important part of his existence. The echo of his voice made the void tremble.

|Lin Feizhou always maintained his distance from the Primordial families. Why do we need to distance ourselves from him? Did he somehow offend Long Juan? Weren’t you the only one at the banquet?|

Bai Shui carefully observed Ma Hongfu’s gestures and expressions. Only when he was sure that the talkative giant of a man was done, did he answer the question.

|Long Juan smiled at the boy.|

Ma Hongfu felt that there was something wrong with Bai Shui. Questions flowed out of his mouth at once. Some of the nine frowned, but Ma Hongfu couldn’t care less about their thoughts.

|Why would Long Juan smile at a true Long? Didn’t the Long family ancestor untether the boy’s fate? Didn’t the Song family ancestor even showed favor to the boy?|

Since Ma Hongfu’s state didn’t show abnormalities, Bai Shui ignored the frowns of others and answered truthfully.

|Long Juan seems to be interested in the boy. She even approached him on her own.|

Bai Shui meaningfully gazed at the other members. Even Ma Hongfu fell into silence as he considered the repercussions of what they heard.

No wonder Bai Shui requested utmost secrecy!

Long Juan… was interested in something?!

The dumbfounded silence was broken by the youngest member. The one called Qin Yiran, a relatively new higher being that actually dared to cast away their entire form. The impossible intersections of space and the resulting phenomena of the folded void had become its main body. The formless youth’s musical voice was always strangely uncomfortable, and today was no exception!

|What about Shen Gao? Wouldn’t he call for the Shen ancestor? If we follow the actions of other ancient organizations and try to appease Long Juan, how could we stay neutral?|

Ma Hongfu was still in deep thought, but he still took it upon himself to answer Qin Yiran’s question.

|Before Long Juan took interest in the Xai dynasty, there used to be 15 Whispering Realms, not 14. This matter is taboo among the Primordial families. The Shen ancestor won’t move, because the Long ancestor’s existence is…|

*rumble*

The secret realm they constructed showed the signs of interference. Ma Hongfu frowned, much to other’s relief. At least the talkative giant still had enough sense to know when to stop!

A moment later, Ma Hongfu continued, but now it was clear he was carefully gauging his words.

|The Shen ancestor can’t make a move. Since the Long family ancestor appointed them as the boy’s stepping stone, we don’t need to heed the Shen’s word any longer. Bai Shui is right. We can’t let Lin Feizhou drag us into Long Juan’s… interest.|

The pattern’s within Qin Yiran became much more complex. |Does Long Juan have that much authority within the Long family?|

Even though Qin Yiran was the youngest member of the Purple Clouds Pavilion, it was much older than Long Juan. The idea that the Long family would let her run amock didn’t feel right.

This time, Bai Shui interjected before Mu Hongfu could speak. Letting him talk seldom resulted in good fortune.

|The Long family tend to keep to themselves, because the true Long’s doesn’t have any interest in the matters of the Whispering Realms. Long Juan is a true heir. She can mobilize the entire Long family at her whim.|

Mu Hongfu clicked his tongue. This sensation would always remind him of the simpler times. And that was why the other members started to frown. No one wanted Mu Hongfu to get carried away, but Mu Hongfu was faster, and immediately took the chance to practice his speech.

|Long Juan you see now is a clone. The great barrier is nothing against the arts of the Long family. Her youngest daughter Long Xiu is the 4th Long, she hasn’t even elevated her existence yet. But she will ascend before any of us could even make an attempt.|

|That’s enough.|

To Bai Shui’s hostile tone, Mu Hongfu only shrugged. Though the latter’s words about the Long family didn’t trigger any restrictions, all of them knew it was only a matter of time. Such topics could not be discussed lightly!

Rui Ling, the creator and the leader of the Purple Clouds Pavilion, lightly shook her head. Other members restricted their thoughts and waited for her to speak.

|Bai Shui, what is the status of the 3rd Long.|

|Long Juan is focused on total extermination. Anyone that refused to attend the Long family banquet, their families to the 13th generation, their direct affiliates to the 7th generation, their servants to the 3rd generation, all of their souls are being extinguished. Not even mortals are spared.|

Such an act would usually summon heavenly punishment of the highest degree, but everyone could guess that the Long family would have methods to circumvent that.

Rui Ling lowered her gaze and fell into deep thought. Others respectfully waited and didn’t dare to utter a single word. Rui Ling’s cultivation wasn’t the highest or lowest, she wasn’t the oldest or the youngest. And yet, she was their leader.

With her slow and deliberate voice, she spoke.

|The boy, the 5th Long, has the tendency to burn the souls of his enemies…|

This meant that Long Juan was showing her favor in the most blatant way possible.

|…Yet, his leaked information suggests he lacks prudence…|

Since ‘the boy’ had become the 5th heir, the Long family would naturally boast about his achievements. The purposeful leak of his disciples, his achievements, his ruthlessness, seem to be slightly wrong. Such was the wisdom of Rui Ling. Other members nodded as she continued.

|The 3rd Long may appear to be above concern, but the 5th looks to be different.|

Rui Ling seemed bothered as she gave her final judgment.

|Cut off anyone that could catch the 3rd Long’s attention. Spare no effort in offering them to the 3rd Long. Steer clear of the 5th. The less we interact with… ‘him’… the better.|

* * *

{Not bad…}

{Hey, little hag, don’t disappoint me!}

As the black void left the flimsily made space, a familiar face appeared.

{If it isn’t the sleeping beauty and its seedling.}

{Keke, sorry, should I have referred to it as her?}

{It looks like a her, or it?}

{HAHAHAHAHAHA}

The cacophony of voices came to an abrupt stop at once, then continued with increased vigor.

{You…}

{Did you seriously bent time just for this?!}

{HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…}

The body called Meng Xue seemed lifeless, but her pink eyes still stone brilliantly.

{What bargain did you do with my husband?}

Upon hearing her words, the black void became serious. The space around them grew still. The only disturbance came from the remnant time energies from the sleeping beauty’s sliver.

If the black void had eyes, he would’ve narrowed them right now. Uncharacteristically, only one voice came out when it spoke.

{That brat isn’t your husband.}

As the silence reigned, the brilliance in Meng Xue’s eyes became slightly dimmer.

{Your so-called husband…} The black void deliberated on his words, but he couldn’t find a way to continue.

{… My so-called husband? So-called?...} As the pink light grew dimmer, the voice grew deeper. {Little void. How many times have I told you? How many times has my husband told you?}

The black void frowned, even though he had no eyebrows. {Are you willing to risk the soul of your ‘beloved’ by relying on that brat? Did you really not smell it? Felt it? He is just a brat, nothing more!}

As the sliver inside Meng Xue kept fading, small pieces started to broke off. Soon, the cycle of that sliver would start anew. Such was the sleeping beauty’s path.

However, the black void couldn’t feel relieved. Instead, he felt stifled. It looked as if this sliver was somehow damaged! Damaged enough to be misled by that brat!

Once the final piece broke off, Meng Xue’s eyes became black. Her body started to disintegrate since the power of the sliver was the only thing that was keeping it whole. The existence called Meng Xue was over. The hopes and dreams she once had were gone. The heaven-defying treasure that she had desperately assembled, had finally consumed everything!

Within the void, a faint echo reached the black void’s nonexistent ears.

{… Our love is eternal…}

The black void sighed. {Brat, you better hold your end of the bargain.}

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