Book 3, Chapter 2 – Comprehending ‘The Way’ by the Pond
Ji Ning, relying on his ‘one with the world’ footwork technique, ran at high speed, as fast as the wind. After leaving Eastmount Marsh, he continued to flee at high speed, moving most likely over a thousand kilometers through the mountain forests before coming to a halt. Actually, by now, the Golden Crow [the Sun] had already completely sunk beneath the horizon. However, the eastern horizon was still very red, and there was still some light cast on the ground.
“Whew!” Ning wiped the sweat from his forehead.
“I first ran three hundred kilometers on water, then another thousand kilometers on land. In addition, I was moving at my maximum speed. I’ve never run like this before. I didn’t expect that even with a body like mine, I still ended up so sweaty.” Ning usually could run for a thousand kilometers on Eastmount Marsh without sweating at all, but this time, he really had moved at his utmost speed.
Feeling exhausted, Ning slowly walked forward. There was a pool in front of him, and within the pool, there were a few floating lotus flowers. The flowers were not stained at all by the mud, and their stems were straight. The fragrance of the lotuses entered his nose, causing the exhausted Ning to let out a hint of a smile as he sat down next to the pool.
“I guess I managed to make it through that setback.” Ning withdrew a bamboo reed with a flip of his hand. The reed was filled with clean water. Raising his head, he took two gulps.
“I wonder how the little green snake is doing.” Ning sighed lightly. “Little green snake, don’t blame me. I’m not able to help you either. Alas, I haven’t reached the Xiantian level.”
Just thinking about this made Ning feel a hint of worry.
The [Crimsonbright Diagram of the Nine Heavens], as the most powerful Fiendgod Body Refining method, was extremely powerful, but training it was simply too difficult. Even someone with his background found it so hard to breakthrough. ‘Merge Yin and Yang, Fuse Fire and Water’. How was this accomplished?
“What do I need to do in order to break through?” Ning pondered bitterly.
A gentle breeze blew by. The cool, summer night breeze was so comfortable. The breeze wafted through the lotus flowers in the pool. Some spun in place, first towards one direction, then towards the other.
Having reached the ‘one with the world’ level in the [Shadewind Steps], Ning naturally was able to mentally become one with the wind. When the wind blew past the lotus blossom, he could clearly sense…
“Huh?” Ning suddenly revealed a look of curiosity. “When the wind blows the lotus, it turns both left, then right!”
Ning suddenly felt as though he understood something.
“If a leaf is blown by the wind, it will be blown wildly without any rhythm at all!”
“If it was a small tree that was being blown down by the wind, it would only shake from left to right! That’s because it doesn’t have any enormous round leaves.”
But when the lotus flower is blown upon, the petals of the lotus can turn left or turn right, cancelling out this force.”
Raising his head, Ning stared at the sky. It wasn’t completely dark yet, but in the skies, he could already faintly see the light of the moon. “The Golden Crow [Sun] falls, and the Moon Rabbit [Moon] rises!”
“Turn left, turn right!”
“Day and night. Because there is day, thus there is the concept of night!” Ning murmured to himself. “In a place of utter darkness, a tiny hint of light is incomparably brilliant! The left and right turns of the lotus petal allow it to cancel out the two contrasting spins, allowing it to cancel out the force of the wind and stay in place, unmoved.”
Ning closed his eyes.
His spirit was already ‘one with the world’, and he became one with the wind and the lotus flowers in the pool.
He could faintly sense some sort of enormous Principle, which hid ancient secrets that had existed since the creation of the endless universe…this secret, was the Dao [The Way]! The wind held the Dao within it, and the Dao itself was vast and unknowable. But when the wind blew past the lotus flower…Ning was capable of seeing the shadow of the Dao flash through the lotus flowers. Capable of finding a hint of the movements and the true appearance of the Dao!
Ning quietly sat there in the lotus position by the side of the pool, completely lost in thought as he attentively meditated on the hint of the ‘Dao’ which he had sensed from the lotus flowers circular movements.
Comprehending the Dao was something that one could hope for but not ask for.
In that moment when his soul, his thoughts, the environment, and everything else all fused together, he was able to just barely touch a hint of the Dao. But in order to touch the Dao…the prerequisite was that one would first have to become ‘one with the world’. Only after one’s mind could completely become one with the world was one capable of touching the Eternal Dao.
“Huahuahua…” A stream of water slowly flowed through a small creek covered up by the wild grass.
Night descended, and the forest was now filled with the croaking of frogs.
Rays of light began to surround Ning, still seated in the lotus position. First, some rays of watery light appeared, slowly forming one enormous lotus petal after another around him. One watery lotus petal after another surrounded Ning, currently blossoming while swaying gently in the breeze.
Immediately afterwards, dots of fiery light began to gather as well, forming into fiery lotus petals. These enormous lotus petals of flame also wrapped around Ning.
Two layers of lotus petals.
The first layer was of watery lotus petals. The second was of fiery lotus petals. Each layer had exactly three petals.
“Hu!” Fire and water intersected. A wind arose out of nowhere.
Between the two layers of lotus petals, a wind arose out of nowhere. The two layers of lotus petals began to swivel. The lower layer of watery lotus petals swiveled to the left, while the upper layer of fiery lotus petals were turning to the right! The two layers of lotus petals were completely turning in opposite directions…slowly, sluggishly, they rotated, but Ning himself didn’t utilize any of his own strength at all.
Everything happened by nature.
“Swoosh!” A gray-furred wolf loped out from within the forests, its jade eyes focused on that distant, fur-clad youth. Only, those enormous lotus petals, multiple meters in size, which were surrounding that fur-clad youth made the wolf slightly confused. As a beast with low intelligence, however, its innate sense was telling it that those rotating petals of fire and water were nothing more than part of the world, just like the clouds…there was no need to pay attention to them.
The gray wolf bared its fangs, staring at the fur-clad youth.
It was very hungry!
The fur-clad youth was just sitting there without moving, as though he was asleep. He definitely wouldn’t have the ability to fight back. In addition, the flesh of this youth seemed so tender and delectable. The gray wolf could already feel its saliva coming into its mouth.
It hesitated no more!
“Swoosh!” The gray wolf charged forward rapidly, pouncing forward with fangs bared, preparing to bite down on that fur-clad youth.
But as soon as it leapt within two meters of those layers of lotus petals…
The wind created by those two layers of lotus petals contained within them a hint of the destructive force of the world. In an instant, it chopped that wolf into tiny pieces, with blood splattering everywhere, some seeping deep into the earth, while the rest flowed into the pool.
Ironwood Zhan and the Bi’an Tiger he commanded, in the former of a black-clothed man, were currently following behind that Ice Wasp as they traversed the mountain forests.
The Ice Wasp was just a wasp, after all. It wasn’t an enormous flying beast, nor was it a Diremonster. One could imagine how much slower it was! It was far from being even a tenth as fast as Ning
“This child of the Ji clan really can run.” Ironwood Zhan’s face was gloomy and sinister. “After leaving Eastmount Marsh, he kept on fleeing…”
The black-clothed man said hurriedly, “Master, the Ice Hornet’s flying speed is much slower. If this child of the Ji clan keeps running without stopping, all the way to one of the Prefectures of the Five Prefectures of the Ji clan, we probably won’t have any way to catch him.”
“Run all the way to one of the Five Prefectures?” Ironwood Zhan shook his head. “Too far. Eastmount Marsh is already at the borders of the Ji clan’s territory. To run from the border to one of the Five Prefectures at once? That child of the Ji clan shouldn’t run that far.” Although he said this, in his heart, Zhan was worried as well. If Ning truly had run to any one of the Five Prefectures, no matter how confident Zhan was in his abilities, he wouldn’t dare to charge into the lair of his enemies.
“We’ll slowly pursue him.”
Ironwood Zhan said. “Wherever the Iceflower Liquid passes by, it will leave that unique aroma. It won’t dissipate for at least three days. We can’t smell it, but the Ice Wasp can. As long as that child of the Ji clan doesn’t flee to the Five Prefecture, he will die!”
“Right, he will die.” The black-clothed man said hurriedly.
“He ruined everything for me, and caused me to have a powerful future foe.” Ironwood Zhan could visualize that Azure Skysnake adventuring in the outside world through the usage of its Void Blink, becoming more powerful, reaching the Zifu level, then coming back to kill him…he couldn’t help but feel fear, while at the same time, he hated Ji Ning even more. “I definitely have to personally tear his skin off and rend his tendons!”
“Right! Tear his skin, rip his tendons!” The black-clothed man ground his teeth as well.
The Golden Crow [Sun] was beginning to raise its head over the eastern skies. It was daybreak. Ironwood Zhan and the Bi’an Tiger under his command were still slowly pursuing. They had pursued for so long, both of them had bellies full of anger. This child of the Ji clan really was too cautious. After leaving Eastmount Marsh, he had actually fled for at least another thousand kilometers.
A Ice Wasp that flew for a thousand kilometers would be very tired as well. Fortunately, this Ice Wasp was a mutant.
“Master.” The black-clothed man’s eyes lit up, and he hurriedly pointed to the distant.
“Huh?” The also-tired Zhan turned to look in that direction. Instantly, he could make out an indistinct human figure at the distant side of a pool. This caused his mind to instantly wake up.
Ironwood Zhan’s eyes lit up. He licked the corner of his lips, then said mentally, “Let’s go take a look.”
Between master and spirit beast, at a close distance, there was the ability to maintain psychic communications. As for the exact distance…it depended on how powerful their souls were. Generally speaking, a Xiantian lifeform and his spirit beast had to maintain a distance of ten meters if they wanted to be able to converse mentally.
The two carefully crept forward, trying not to make any noise.
But in truth, even if they made some noise, Zhan wasn’t afraid. He was, after all, a late stage Xiantian expert. When running at full speed, he was a bit faster than even Ji Ning, and in addition, he carried on him a ‘Divine Movement Seal’ as well as a number of other ordinary Dao seals. How could he possibly allow Ning to escape?
“What an idiot. No matter how careful I am, I still am making some noise, but he didn’t notice at all. He should be a Fiendgod Body Refiner. Logically speaking, he should have excellent senses. Hmph, hmph, he really has no experience at all. He’s probably fallen asleep.” Zhan laughed coldly. “All the better. It will make my life easier. Otherwise, I’d have to waste a Divine Movement Seal.
Ironwood Zhan and the black-clothed man continued moving forward.
They could make the person out clearly.
“What?” They were both stunned.
This was because the Sun had already risen by now. Under the light of the Sun, those enormous fiery lotus petals and the watery lotus petals appeared semi-translucent. After all, these lotus petals were not real lotus petals. They were formed by the energy of the world. Under the light of the sun, they instantly appeared semi-translucent.
The two layers of enormous lotus petals were still slowly swiveling in opposite directions, but contained within them a very strange rhythm. In the center of these two enormous layers of rotating lotus petals, Ning was seated there in the lotus position.
“What…what is this?” Zhan, although highly experienced, had never seen a sight like this. “Can it be that this is created from internal ki?”
“Still, even if he has broken through to the Xiantian lifeform stage, he is still only an early stage Xiantian. I imagine he doesn’t have any magic treasures on him.” A fierce look appeared on Zhan’s face.
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