Book 19, Empyrean God, Chapter 53 – The Keeper of the Everwood
“Time to go!” The Rahu-Ning entered his Voidboat. Just as he was about to tear through space and depart, he suddenly saw lines of golden silk appear within the blurriness of the Void. These golden strands of silk made it so that tearing through space was going to be incredibly difficult.
“Not good. They’ve altered the Void in this area. It’s now incredibly difficult to tear through it. It was fairly easy when I came to this major world…it seems that they made their move when I attacked this city.” Ji Ning instantly understood what had happened.
Although all of this took time to describe, in truth it happened in an instant. And, right at this moment, the space behind and in front of Ning was easily torn open, resulting in two large boats appearing.
The First World.
The Seamless Alliance had originiated from the Seamless Chaosworld. Their roots were very deep, and they had spread out across a total of ten worlds. These ten mighty worlds were ten utterly enormous military bases, each of which had Daofathers protecting them. Immortal and Fiendgod armies could be rapidly dispatched from them to engage in wars of conquest against the other major worlds.
These ten worlds were ranked from ‘tenth’ to ‘first’, and the higher the ranking, the more powerful the world.
The First World was the true heart and core of the entire Seamless Alliance. Even the Allfiend world, protected by the Lord of All Fiends, was at most on par with the First World. After discovering Ji Ning’s attack, the Godking had headed straight towards the First World.
“Uncle-master.” The Godking was standing beside a violet-robed man in a rather respectful manner.
This violet-robed man was carrying a deep-violet wooden ruler on his back. His face was very calm, and he seemed to carry an aura of warmth and amusement about him. He was in charge of protecting the First World, an individual who had a truly transcendent status amongst the major powers of the Seamless Alliance. In fact, prior to the end of the Primordial Era, he had been second only to the Lord of the Demonheart. Back then, his status had been a bit higher than that of even the Lord of All Fiends.
He…was Keeper Everwood.
He was an extremely charismatic figure who many of the major powers of the Seamless Gate admired and were willing to follow and serve.
Back during the time of the Seamless Chaosworld, the Lord of the Demonheart and Keeper Everwood had been two diametrically different types of people.
The Lord of the Demonheart loved in battle, delighted in slaughter, and enjoyed playing with the hearts of others.
Keeper Everwood was gentle and kind. He delighted in collecting various types of wood, which was a very strange hobby for a major power to have. The reason why he gave himself the name of ‘Everwood’ was because the type of wood he was the most infatuated with was a type of wood known as Everwood. This was a form of naturally-occurring wood within the Seamless Chaosworld. Keeper Everwood found and collected every single specimen of this type of wood, then titled himself the ‘Keeper of the Everwood’.
He spent some time dabbling in formations and was a master of them, but that was just for fun. His true passion was still his Everwood.
He disliked battle, and he never quarreled with others. Whenever anyone asked him for advice, he would give them guidance. This, many major powers viewed themselves as being in his debt. When the Seamless Chaosworld still existed, his reputation within that world was exceedingly high. If he wanted to struggle with others over control of the world, the Lord of the Demonheart would’ve most likely found it extremely difficult to truly unify it under his command. Fortunately, Keeper Everwood didn’t desire power, and so he ended up swearing an oath of brotherhood with the Lord of the Demonheart, becoming the number-two figure of the entire Seamless Chaosworld.
His power was truly unfathomable!
He was extremely skilled in formations, spells, and divine abilities. Most terrifying of all was that wooden ruler he carried on his back; his true power lay in close combat!
However, during the war which ended the Primordial Era, Mother Nuwa had made a breakthrough and become a god like Pangu, completely dominating all her foes. Not even Keeper Everwood had been able to withstand her.
Keeper Everwood would have fallen, but fortunately the Lord of All Fiends had been so talented in his escaping skills that he had managed to save the Keeper, as well as many of the other experts of the Seamless Gate. This actions made it so that all the survivors owed him a debt. In addition, given that he was actually able to escape from the wrath of the Pangu-level Mother Nuwa, the Lord of All Fiend’s status amongst the Seamless Chaosworld’s forces instantly skyrocketed, and he became the number one figure of the modern-day Seamless Alliance.
However, Keeper Everwood’s power remained unquestioned, and so he guarded over the First World.
In truth, prior to these two alliances turning hostile, Keeper Everwood had many friends from the Nuwa Alliance. Even the likes of Daoist Three Purities, Tathagata, and Subhuti had been good friends of him. They were so close to each other than when the storm had descended, Three Purities had told Keeper Everwood, “Fellow Daoist Everwood, there’s no need for you to get involved in this war between our two alliances. It doesn’t matter if the Seamless Gate is destroyed or if the Nuwa Alliance is destroyed; I trust that no matter who the victors are, they won’t make any trouble for you.”
Logically speaking, no one should be capable of transcending beyond the bounds of this war. Old Man Yuan, for example, tried to maintain a balance between the two sides as he was unwilling to fight, but in the end both sides would force him to make a choice.
Keeper Everwood, however…
The Nuwa Alliance would’ve permitted him not to take part in this war, promising not to touch him. The Seamless Alliance didn’t try to force him either. However, in the end Keeper Everwood decided to stand along with the Seamless Alliance and his fellows who had come from the chaosworld of his birth. Still, the fact that he was given a choice was testament to his charisma.
“This young fellow named Ji Ning is nothing more than a minor nuisance. You are being too serious about this,” Keeper Everwood said with a chuckle. “You even had Bloodriver sacrifice fifteen of his clones. With my ‘Brightvoid Worldlock Formation’, his Voidboat shall become much less effective. He’ll be like a fish caught in the nets. It will be very hard for him to escape.”
“For you to come up with this Brightvoid Worldlock Formation just to deal with him…he should feel honored as he dies,” the Godking said.
“He’s Subhuti’s disciple, yes?” Keeper Everwood shook his head slowly. He truly didn’t wish to act against the beloved disciple of a former friend. However, both alliances were currently warring against each other. If he showed mercy to his foes, it would be the same as showing cruelty to his own allies!
“Uncle-master, this is merely Ji Ning’s true body; he still has a Primaltwin,” the Godking immediately said. “After his true body is slain, his power will drop dramatically, and he’ll also lose his treasures such as the Voidboat. He’ll no longer have the power needed to ambush us. This will be good for both him and us.”
Although this was what the Godking said on the surface, in his heart he still felt resentment. He venerated his master, the Lord of the Demonheart, for his mercilessness and his willingness to pull up grass by the roots! But of course, he had to coax this uncle-master of his with the appropriate words.
“I’m not as soft-hearted as you think. Even if I truly kill this disciple of Subhuti, it doesn’t really matter. This is just the beginning. When the Endwar comes…” When he thought of the impending Endwar, Keeper Everwood felt helpless and resigned. However, if he had to make a choice, he would still choose these ancient, true brothers and friends he had met back when they had all been born from the primordial chaos.
Daoist Three Purities…Subhuti…either they would die, or his own friends and brothers would die. One side had to perish. Thus, he had no choice but to grit his teeth and choose to send Daoist Three Purities and the others on their way to death.
The Godking and Keeper Everwood watched the battle begin from far away. In truth, others aside from them were watching as well, such as many of the major powers of the Nuwa Alliance.
These were two enormous formations that had been laid out by a pair of Protocosmic spirit-treasure boats, each filled with 320 Empyrean Gods and True Immortals. Like the Taiji diagram, one was Yang-aligned while the other was Yin-aligned. They came together into a perfect whole, forming the enormous Brightvoid Worldlock Formation. This enormous formation covered this entire major world, and it was something which only True Gods and Daofathers could normally accomplish.
Once the formation was successfully laid out, the planetary membrance became merged into the formation itself. To tear through the planetary membrane and enter the Void would thus become extremely difficult and require an extremely long period of time.
But of course, as the controllers of this formation, the parties on the two boats were able to easily enter this major world.
“Kill Ji Ning.”
“This entire major world has been locked away. He won’t have the time needed to slowly tear through into the Void, nor will he be able to teleport away and escape. He’s dead.”
The Empyrean Gods and True Immortals atop the two ships of the Seamless Gate were both extremely confident.
After Ning’s previous assaults, the Godking had been enraged. Worried that Ning might try to cause trouble again, he had asked Keeper Everwood to come up with this technique. In truth, this sort of world-locking formation wasn’t of much use in normal situations! This was because this sort of seal that had been created by merely a group of Empyrean Gods and True Immortals was rather meaningless to True Gods and Daofathers, who would be able to easily tear through it!
It was meaningless in a war…but it was very useful to catch and kill Ning, like a loach in the net. Given Keeper Everwood’s skill in the art of formations, he was able to come up with this technique after spending just three years.
And now…after all these years, Ning finally encountered it.
As soon as the two boats appeared…
“Time to go.” The Rahu-Ning didn’t hesitate at all. With but a thought, an enormous black lightning serpent suddenly appeared out of nowhere. It wrapped itself over the Voidboat…then disappeared with a flash.
“I…can’t see where he went.”
“Too fast…I can’t even see his movements…”
The Empyrean Gods and True Immortals aboard the two boats were both dazed. This was a completely different level of speed.
With Ning having reached the speed of light, the Empyrean Gods and True Immortals aboard the two Seamless Gate ships all stared at the streak of black lightning that had been left in the skies. After the streak of black lightning disappeared, they could no longer see any trace of Ji Ning.
“How are we supposed to chase him?”
“H-how are we…”
“He instantly disappeared.”
They all exchanged glances.
The Rahu-Ning quickly moved far, far away from the two enemy warships. Only then did he forcibly tear a hole through the Void and move to escape. The golden threads of light sought to impede him, making the tearing process very difficult, but because the enemy warships were too far away they weren’t able to catch up to him at all. Riiiip! The planetary membrane was finally torn apart and the Voidboat disappeared.
Soon…it reappeared within another world.
“Ah, so these actually haven’t fled yet?” The Rahu-Ning rode the Voidboat forward, assaulting the headquarters of the Seamless Gate on this world.
“Look at his face! That’s Ji Ning. Ji Ning!”
“Why didn’t the Godking warn us?”
“The Godking just warned us to leave right away.”
“He only warned us NOW?! It’s too late!!!”
The Rahu-Ning smashed straight through this headquarters with overwhelming power. The Godking had been so completely certain that there was no way Ji Ning would be able to escape that he hadn’t arranged for the other Empyrean Gods and True Immortals in the nearby major worlds to flee. Thus…they once more suffered for it.
The First World.
“Impossible. This is impossible.” The Godking couldn’t believe it, and a look of madness was in his eyes. “How could Ji Ning have acquired a divine ability like this? This speed…it’s at the limit of speed possible under the Heavenly Daos. Wasn’t Goldcrow supposed to be the only person in the Nuwa Alliance who is this fast? How could Ji Ning be this fast as well? He’s only human!”
“A perfect evasion technique.” Keeper Everwood murmured to himself, “For a human to be able to execute it…he couldn’t have been born with it. Did the Nuwa Alliance come up with this divine ability?”
“What should I do? What should I do? How should I stop him and kill him?” The Godking began to panic. “If he’s just allowed to continue like this, he’ll sweep through one major world after another. Our strategy throughout the Three Realms…are we going to have to upend it and give up all our effort just because of him? No. No way!”
The Godking was panicking, but no matter what idea he came up with, he couldn’t come up with anything that could be used to stop Ning.
“Uncle-master.” The Godking looked at the nearby Keeper Everwood.
“Mm?” Keeper Everwood looked back at the Godking.
“Uncle-master, please advise me,” the Godking said frantically.
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