Chapter 422: Karmic Severing 1
The world was silent. Nothing moved. Even the golden shield seemed to have become part of this perpetuity; the rays of light shining out from it also stopped moving.
The members of the five great Tribes in the area were all like clay statues, absolutely motionless.
Even the old man who had used the Occult Karma Magic to merge into the gigantic earthworm was frozen in mid-air like a statue, a maniacal laugh plastered onto his face.
The only things that could move were Meng Hao and the silver line in the air!
A profound sense of danger appeared in Meng Hao’s mind. One of the main reasons he had been forced to flee the Southern Domain and go into hiding was the Ji Clan. And yet here again they appeared in the sky above the Western Desert.
Silver light floated lazily off of the line as it whistled down from up above. Ripples emanated out that seemed capable of ripping apart the very air. As it turned out, Meng Hao was not the target. Instead, the line hooked up the old earthworm man. This all happened in front of everyone present, although it seemed they weren’t able to see it happening.
Meng Hao started to breath heavily. He didn’t dare to move. He stood in place, watching, trying to look exactly like everyone else. He remained completely motionless, attempting to not even think.
He could see that at the end of the silver line was a hook. The hook was currently stabbing effortlessly through the body of the earthworm, piercing all the way through. It was almost like the old earthworm man was now bait on the hook….
Meng Hao’s mind spun and his heart was pounding.
“It’s not a thread, it’s a fishing line, the same type you would use to go fishing!!” Meng Hao remained motionless, but was able to clearly see everything happening. After the old earthworm man was completely stabbed through by the hook, he was suddenly wrenched up into the sky.
Suddenly, an archaic voice could be heard from up above, where the fishing line originated from. In a leisurely tone, it said, “So, it turns out there are Cultivators in the Western Desert who practice Occult Karma Magic. Turned your body into bait, huh? I guess I can use you to go fishing. Maybe I can snag a big fish from the Western Desert. Since you’re fish bait now, you have no need for Karma.”
As the voice echoed out, Meng Hao was astonished to find that he could suddenly see threads attached to the bodies of everyone present. They were faint, indistinct and flickering, and seemed to contain fate itself. If you looked closely, all of the threads seemed to be connected to each other.
Regardless of neo-demon or Cultivator, even the mountains and rivers, all things in the world, were filled with vast quantities of these threads. They spread out, connected together, even to the earthworm man up in the air. Everything and everyone was connected together into something like an enormous, living web.
Anything seen or remembered caused a merging of Karma strings, connecting everything.
“Henceforth, let your Karma be extinguished,” said the ancient voice in the sky. Suddenly, Meng Hao could see that the threads attached to the earthworm up in the sky were suddenly beginning to collapse and be destroyed!
As these threads of fate were being eliminated, it caused a huge chain reaction. All of the other threads connected to everything else—mountains, rivers, the land, the neo-demons, the Cultivators—began to tremble.
Even more shocking to Meng Hao was that the surrounding Cultivators were all trembling, and their faces were pale. The threads attached from them to the earthworm began to shatter into pieces. It wasn’t all the threads attached to everything; rather, any connection or memory they had regarding the existence of the old earthworm man, was collapsing.
Now it seemed as if the balance of Karma had been disturbed. By forcibly erasing the Karma that had been sown, it affected the rest of Karma in all creation.
It was at this moment that Meng Hao’s mind began to tremble; he had just noticed that the threads attached to his own body were trembling and seemed to be on the verge of collapsing. An unspeakable power seemed to be spreading out through the world. It seemed any vestige or memory of the old earthworm man was being completely wiped out.
Even as his mind reeled, the Demon Sealing Jade suddenly began to vibrate inside his bag of holding. A warm, gentle power emanated out from it to envelop Meng Hao’s entire person. It appeared as if the threads attached to Meng Hao were collapsing, but in truth, as that massive power washed over him, the memories of the old earthworm man were not wiped away.
Suddenly, the earthworm man up above transformed into a beam of light that shot up into the sky and then disappeared.
Finally, the previously still world once again began to move.
As things returned to normal… everyone shuddered.
The golden light once again emanated up around the platform. Gu La had a look of confusion on his face, which was quickly replaced with happiness. With a loud shout, he proclaimed his forfeiture, after which he was enveloped by golden light and pulled off of the platform.
Nothing existed in his memories regarding the old fisherman. He only remembered Meng Hao’s fabulous victory over the other Dragoneers.
Outside of the golden shield, the Greatfathers of the five great Tribes were completely recovered. All of them had different expressions as their gazes came to focus on Meng Hao. Their memories did not contain anything regarding the old fisherman either. It was as if the old fisherman… had never even existed.
“The Crow Scout Tribe has recruited a Grand Dragoneer!”
“The Crow Scout Tribe must have paid a hefty price in preparation for this Ancestor Rite Competition. Otherwise, they would never have been able to convince a Grand Dragoneer to work for them!”
As the buzz of conversation rose up from the members of the five great Tribes, Meng Hao stood on the platform, his face ashen. Nobody that he could see looked even a little bit different than from before. In fact, it seemed as if… none of them were even aware that everything had stopped moving moments ago.
Furthermore, they had no reaction whatsoever to the sudden disappearance of the old earthworm man. Apparently, his life did not exist at all within their memories.
It seemed as if all the causes and effects of the old man’s Karma had been completely severed from everything, the neo-demons, the mountains, the rivers and even the land. Not a trace remained of him in any consciousness whatsoever.
Meng Hao looked around, panting, face pale. An unprecedented feeling of fear filled him. “Now that is death… true death. To be erased from the memory of anyone you ever met, as if you had never existed in the world…. So that… that is the Karma Line of the Ji Clan!”
Suddenly, Meng Hao recalled the fishing rod in his bag of holding, the one he had acquired when he slayed one of the sons of Ji. Now he understood the function of that rod.
He also realized that if that fishing line had come for him, and hooked him instead, then perhaps all traces of his own existence would have been erased from the world.
“The Ji Clan….” Meng Hao’s face was pale. He waved his right hand to collect up his neo-demon horde, then strode off of the platform. The Wild Giant accompanied him as he left.
Meng Hao paid no attention to the gazes and words directed toward him. Instead, he looked up into the sky, his face unsightly. Of course, no one could understand what he was feeling. Even the parrot seemed unaware of what had just happened.
Perhaps this wasn’t because the parrot wasn’t powerful enough, but rather because it didn’t care enough about the old earthworm man to notice. Perhaps it had even been willing to allow it to happen.
Maybe it would have been different if the Karmic Severing was directed at someone important to it.
Finally Meng Hao looked back at the members of the five Crow Divinity Tribes who stood around him. As of now, everyone had to admit that the Crow Scout Tribe had clearly won the right to be the first to enter into the Crow Divinity Holy Land.
Using their bloodline powers along with a special technique, the five Tribes of the Crow Divinity fully opened the Crow Divinity Holy Land.
The Crow Scout Tribe members cheered as the Greatfather and the Sky Priest politely clasped hands and offered thanks to Meng Hao.
After that, all of the Crow Scout Tribe members, along with Meng Hao, turned into colorful beams as they shot toward the golden light. Up ahead, the tall platform was fading away, replaced by two massive doors that were slowly opening.
In front of the doors, the Greatfather clasped hands to Meng Hao and the man-form Outlander Beast. “Many thanks, Grandmaster Meng and Fellow Daoist Out. In accord with our promise, you may follow the Tribe members to enter the Pool of Destiny!”
Meng Hao nodded distractedly as he looked at the opening doors.
“The Karma Line of the Ji Clan is so powerful. Being destroyed by it actually erases every trace of your existence. Wow….” Meng Hao was lost in thought as the massive doors opened within the golden light. When they were about half opened, Meng Hao suddenly felt a tremor running through him. He couldn’t stop his face from flickering.
That was because he had suddenly been struck with a new realization.
“Oh no! The Karma Line severs Karma, completely erasing it. It prohibits anything from remembering what was severed. That is a complete erasure. However… if someone happens to remember something about the person who was erased, that would mean that the technique was incomplete, not perfect. Essentially, it means the technique failed…. Not good!”
Having reached this point in his train of thought, Meng Hao’s face completely fell. He could imagine a situation in which whoever it was that employed the technique detected the fact that it had in fact failed. He had little time to continue thinking about the matter. His body flickered as he shot toward the huge doors.
Almost the instant he flew forward, the entire world suddenly grew still. Suddenly, the fishing line which had so recently disappeared… could be seen again up in the sky. This time, it was shooting down toward Meng Hao!
“So a little fish slipped through the net,” said the archaic voice, chuckling. “You dare to spoil my Karmic Severing? Thankfully, you left some clues behind that I noticed, nor are you capable of causing my technique to backfire against me. The Heavens are large and the Earth is wide, but do you really think you can escape me?”
Around Meng Hao, everything was silent and unmoving!