Chapter 800: Seventh Year Tribulation!
“Young Lord, you need to study now….”
“Young Lord, stop bullying your cousin Prince Wei! Look, he’s crying because you hit him!” [1. The name of Prince Wei might make some readers recall something said by the Ji Clan Patriarch in chapter 795….]
“Aiya! Young Lord, don’t bully Princess Ling’er. She’s… she’s your future beloved! The Patriarch already issued the official order!”
Meng Hao gaped at everything that was happening. He watched the five-year-old version of himself pummeling another boy his age. Apparently the boy had told on him, which earned Meng Hao beating from his sister. This was his revenge. In the end, the boy was in tears and begging for mercy. In another scene, he saw himself setting fire to the hair of a young girl who was about the same age as him. That left him feeling quite shocked. In fact, he couldn’t help but think… this kid couldn’t really be him, could he?
He saw many unfamiliar faces, and he also witnessed the carefree life he had lived until he was seven years of age. The life he had lived was one of simple happiness.
He wasn’t studious at all, which made Meng Hao recall how poorly he had fared in the Imperial examinations.
However, on his seventh birthday, everything changed!
The day his seventh birthday arrived, something completely unforeseen happened to him. It was a misfortune, an extremely shocking matter that caused a huge commotion throughout the entire Fang Clan, although the news was quickly hushed up.
The Fang Clan had a bloodline legacy, a Daoist Magic that was completely Heaven-defying. It manifested differently among different clan members, depending on their bloodline. It was a Daoist magic that could… allow for Nirvanic Rebirth up to four times! It was an ability that essentially gave them a chance to live up to four lifetimes!
The character ‘Fang 方’ is composed of four strokes, just like those four lifetimes [2. Click here to see the four strokes of the character 'Fang']. It was this Daoist magic that ensured that the Fang Clan remained as a towering force in the Ninth Mountain and Sea, regardless of whether it was the era of Lord Li or Lord Ji.
Any clan member who was born with a Nirvana Brand was considered Chosen. If a clan member was born without it, it was very difficult to develop it later in life.
Furthermore… throughout all the years, it was virtually unheard of for anyone to actually live all four lifetimes. Even some of the clan Patriarchs, when they became old and weak, could only experience Nirvanic Rebirth once. Those who had been able to experience Nirvanic Rebirth twice were extremely rare.
It required a deep cultivation base, as well as a very pure Fang clan bloodline.
Every time Nirvanic Rebirth was experienced, a Nirvana Flower would bloom. It would meld into the body, and allow the subject to become incredibly powerful by living an entire additional lifetime!
On Meng Hao’s seventh birthday… he experienced Nirvanic Rebirth!
He did not have a powerful cultivation base, and yet… he experienced Nirvanic Rebirth!
This matter shook the whole Fang Clan. Meng Hao’s father and mother were even more astonished!
That was because… although Nirvanic Rebirth was a good thing, and enabled someone to live more lifetimes, for something like that to happen to a seven-year-old child was the most brutal of calamities! [3. This word for “calamity” is actually composed of two characters 浩劫. The first character is the same character “Hao 浩” from Meng Hao’s name. The second is the character often translated “tribulation 劫.” Together, they mean calamity.]
He hadn’t even lived a life yet. He had a road of endless possibilities ahead of him, but was stifled before he could explore any of them! All of the essence of his flesh and blood, all of his fated good fortune that had yet to be revealed, was sucked into the Nirvanic Rebirth as he started over from the beginning!
His body began to degenerate as he passed backward from seven years of age until he was in the same state he had been when he was born. The Nirvana Brand on the back of his hand faded some, and a layer of it fell off, which then transformed into a flower. Shockingly, the flower… gave bloom to a fruit!
That fruit gave rise to further shock in the Fang Clan. Even the Patriarchs who were locked away in secluded meditation came out to see.
According to the legends, the pinnacle of the Fang Clan’s Nirvanic Rebirth Daoist magic was none other than the Nirvana Fruit!
Nirvana Flowers were rare, but there were people in every generation who produced them…. However, for many many years in the Fang Clan, the Nirvana Fruit had only been spoken of as the stuff of legend. Up until then, in the entire Fang Clan there was only one shriveled up, auraless husk of a Nirvana Fruit.
Nirvana Flowers bloomed when a member of the Fang Clan experienced Nirvanic Rebirth and began to live another lifetime. They were born inside of the body, and could enable one to grow incredibly powerful. When that clan member died later on, the Nirvana Flower would wither and fade away.
However, Nirvana Fruit… were the absolute pinnacle of power. They could be preserved… and passed on as legacies!
And now… little Meng Hao actually produced a Nirvana Fruit!
This matter shook the Fang clan, and many clan members started to view Meng Hao as an extraordinary Chosen. However, his father and mother were a bit uneasy about the matter. And as they watched as their son reverted from being seven years of age to being an infant, that unease grew more intense.
This type of good fortune was something that they didn’t dare to think too deeply about. If they did… it caused their hair to stand on end in terror. It was the prospect of a child who, at seven years of age, had lost an entire lifetime, as if an eighth year of life didn’t even exist for him.
Meng Hao’s paternal grandfather looked on silently. Then one night, he left. Before leaving, he told Meng Hao’s father and mother that he was going to seek an Outsider, who he believed was the only person who could explain what was happening. Meng Hao’s maternal grandfather, the venerable old man from the Eighth Mountain’s Meng Clan, went with him.
The two of them disappeared into the starry sky.
Little Meng Hao grew up again, almost as if he had been reincarnated. He did not retain the memories of his previous life, and his personality had changed drastically. He was much quieter. He also noticed the strange looks that many clan members would give him when they thought no one was looking, and it scared him.
Such gazes were not the look you would give to a child, but rather, some type of Heavenly material or Earthly treasure.
When people looked at him in that way, his older sister would burst into a ranting rage and storm over with Meng Hao in tow to beat them up. She was frequently at his side, watching out for him.
“Don’t be scared little brother, your big sister is here to protect you!” She was fifteen or sixteen years old now, and was already slender and elegant. However, her violent personality hadn’t changed. In fact, she had actually grown more violent. [4. The depiction of Fang Yu protecting Meng Hao might make some readers recall what happened back in the Demon Immortal Sect in chapter 611, when she killed two Fang Clan members who were threatening Meng Hao]
One day, a senior member of the clan gave Meng Hao that same strange look, which left him very frightened.
Later, he told his father about it. His father smiled and tousled his hair, then rocked him to sleep. After Meng Hao fell asleep, his father turned to leave, and his face was extremely grim. That day, the entire Fang Clan was sent into an explosive uproar, and many miserable shrieks rang out. Meng Hao’s father swept through the entire clan, sword in hand.
From that day onward, there were far fewer such gazes cast Meng Hao’s way.
Time passed. The other children who were once Meng Hao’s age were now older, and the people he used to bully began to make progress along the path of cultivation. He could no longer set fire to that increasingly beautiful girl’s hair. He was completely incapable of beating up Prince Wei, whom he found so objectionable. None of his former friends would play with him. Although he was constantly attended by various clan members, he was still plagued by a festering feeling of loneliness. Eventually, he also found out about the rebirth he had undergone when he had turned seven.
The only people who he truly had to accompany him were his father, his mother, and his older sister. During this second lifetime, Meng Hao rarely went outside. Most of those seven years were spent in silence….
Finally, the seventh birthday of his second lifetime arrived, and… he once again went through Nirvanic Rebirth.
When it happened, Meng Hao felt fear, and pain. His body withered, and everything went blurry. It was as if his flesh and blood were fading away. The mark on the back of his hand once again shone with a bizarre glow.
The Fang Clan was yet again thrown into chaos. As Meng Hao experienced the Nirvanic Rebirth, his mother held him in her arms, and tears flowed down her face onto his. As he experienced these blurry memories, Meng Hao couldn’t help but stare blankly at his mother, and the look of pain and heartbreak on her face.
Little Meng Hao’s voice was hoarse as he said, “Mother… don’t cry…. Didn’t you tell me that this is just like sleeping a bit…? I’ll rest for a while and then wake up…. When I wake up, you have to tell me a story, okay…?” His older sister stood off to the side, weeping as she watched her little brother. She was already twenty years old, and to see her little brother grow up twice, only to experience Nirvanic Rebirth twice, was heartrending.
His father stood off to the side, fists clenched tightly at his sides, eyes seemingly on the verge of dripping with tears of blood. Unfortunately, there was no way for him to vent the anguish he felt in his heart.
Nirvanic Rebirth was certainly Heaven-defying. However… for it to happen twice to a young child on his seventh birthday, was no good fortune. It was a tribulation!
Seventh Year Tribulation!
If it happened a third time, and then a fourth, then what awaited Meng Hao would be certain death. He would leave behind four Nirvana Fruits, and would then vanish into nothing.
His life would be one in which… he never reached eight years of age.
A strange atmosphere fell over the Fang Clan. Many people were watching, waiting for Meng Hao to complete the Nirvanic Rebirth, and then give bloom to a second Nirvana Fruit. However, no strange looks could be seen, and no one spoke.
They watched as Meng Hao gradually degenerated, once again becoming a young child…. The mark on his hand produced a flower, which then bore a Nirvana Fruit.
Thus, the curtain fell on Meng Hao’s second incomplete life.
When he finally became an infant yet again, he didn’t cry. As his mother held him in her arms, he gazed blankly up at the stars.
His mother wept. Trembling, his father lifted his head up and roared. Unfortunately, that didn’t change anything. They could see the mark on the back of Meng Hao’s hand, the Nirvana Brand, and they knew that the third lifetime had begun.
This time, he was clearly doomed to experience Nirvanic Rebirth again on his seventh birthday.
There were many aged members of the Fang Clan who were observing what was happening. Many of them appeared to be very distressed; others sighed.
Word of the matter finally began to spread outside the clan. However, the secret of Nirvanic Rebirth was maintained. The only thing that people on the outside knew was that the Fang Clan’s eldest grandchild, the direct descendant of the bloodline, was born with tribulation attached to him. Every seven years he would experience such tribulation.
A child like that was essentially crippled.
Meng Hao’s mother spent her days with tears staining her face. His older sister’s violent temper caused her to get into fights virtually every day, as if that was the only way for her to give vent to the anger in her heart. His father did everything in his power to try to figure out a way to solve the problem, but it was all in vain.
His two grandfathers never returned.
When he was one year old during his third lifetime, a young man came to Planet East Victory. His arrival caused the elder members of the clan to reel in shock. One after another, they came out to bow in respect.
The young man said he had been sent by Meng Hao’s grandfathers. After laying eyes on Meng Hao, he was silent for a long time. His face flickered with memories and conflicting emotions, as well as surprise.
“In life, all things relate to the reaping and sowing of Karma. Farming is an example. You must work hard before you can bring in the harvest…. You must pay out before you can profit.
“As a husband and wife, are the two of you willing to abandon any future glory, to give up your current status and become the Prison Wardens of the Ninth Mountain, to guard the door of South Heaven for 100,000 years? Are you willing, no matter what Heaven-shaking Earth-shattering events take place, no matter what calamitous tribulations occur in the outside world, to spend 100,000 tedious years in that one place and not step foot outside of South Heaven? Are you willing to guard the gate of South Heaven, and not let any living beings from the outside world pass through it?
“If you are willing to leave behind everything that has been polluted by your Karma, then take this child to South Heaven. That place is the origin of the entire Ninth Mountain. If you take him there… then you must leave him before his seventh birthday. Keep your distance from him until the day he reaches Dao Seeking. You must not meet him, and must not allow your Karma to contaminate him. All of this will depend on the level of your sincerity. If you are truly sincere, then you can succeed.
“He must not be surnamed Fang. Have him take his mother’s surname.
“If you do these things, then perhaps… he will have a chance at a life.”
This chapter was sponsored by Nightrunners
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