Chapter 285: A Myriad of Illusions, Heart as a Boulder
Jiang Chen shook his head slightly, his heart was as calm as still water.
Although he’d been slightly taken aback when Dan Fei had appeared, it wasn’t enough to stir any bit of desire of him.
It wasn’t that he didn’t find women pleasurable, but that the ambiguous feelings between a man and a woman didn’t exist between him and Dan Fei at all.
As real as this illusion was, it was still fake.
If the illusion had been Gouyu, that might’ve been enough to mesmerize Jiang Chen for a second, because Gouyu’s style was indeed that bold and straightforward in her loves and hates.
However, there was none of that kind of draw between Dan Fei and Jiang Chen, and even if there was, this wasn’t something that Dan Fei would’ve done.
Jiang Chen exhaled a long breath as his eyes shot towards the front like lightning. His footsteps moved forward resolutely.
The illusions around him vanished like the mist.
He appeared in the ocean of flowers once again as fragrance wreathed itself around him.
“There seems to be something in the fragrance of these flowers. They seem to be producing a type of stimulant that gives rise to illusion, controlling one’s body and consciousness.”
Jiang Chen didn’t linger as he quickly strode forward.
Since he could only move forward on the path of rebirth without turning back, he continued to walk forward without hesitation!
He walked roughly four to six hours like so as the night deepened.
A soft call suddenly sounded by Jiang Chen’s ears.
What was that? Jiang Chen’s ears twitched. He’d heard a voice! The voice was low, but he could hear it very clearly.
He heard it even more clearly this time.
“Father’s voice?” Jiang Chen’s thoughts raced as he immediately told himself, this is an illusion, it must be an illusion!
Illusions would continuously pop up on the path of rebirth, and phantom sounds as well. Everything was fake!
Jiang Chen kept repeating that to himself.
However, the more he stressed this to himself, the more real the voice beside his ear became.
“Chen’er, save me, save me!” Jiang Feng’s voice was in obvious pain, as if he was suffering through the agonies of the eighteen hells.
“Chen’er, I found intelligence of your mother in the Upper Eighth Region, but was captured by them. They tortured me with countless methods and they wanted me to reveal where you were… Chen’er, you’re my child. I wouldn’t betray my son even if I died! Never! … ah!!”
This voice kept surging into Jiang Chen’s ears like a magic spell.
Although Jiang Chen kept reminding himself that all of this was illusion, the voice kept weaving itself around him and it wouldn’t be dismissed.
A towering tree suddenly appeared in front of Jiang Chen.
Someone was hanging on the tree. He was covered with wounds as his hands and feet were nailed to the tree with long nails.
“Chen’er, don’t come close! Go! Leave! They’re using me as bait to lure you in! You have yet to grow in your strength and you can’t fight them, go!”
The person hanging on the tree suddenly lifted his head, yelling wildly at Jiang Chen with a head full of wildly bedraggled hair.
It was Jiang Feng!
Three scabs criss crossed Jiang Feng’s face at the moment, splitting his entire face open and appearing quite frightening.
There wasn’t a single bit of unmarked skin on his body as it was dotted with wounds.
The most horrifying thing was that there were black beetles crawling all over the tree, and long, pliable creatures waving enormous tentacles around, continuously feeding off of Jiang Feng’s blood and nibbling away at his wounds.
Only stark white bones were left of Jiang Feng’s calves after a short while.
Suddenly, a group of black clothed practitioners poured out from the two sides of the great tree, each of them holding the leash of a ferocious beast in their hands.
All of these beasts were in the origin realm!
When the beasts roared, their presence reverberated up to the heavens, as if the entire sky and earth would be shattered by their roars.
The fierce beasts howled and started running towards Jiang Chen.
Jiang Feng used all of his strength to scream hoarsely, “Chen’er, run for your life! Flee!!”
One had to say, this illusion was quite realistic. Even though Jiang Chen kept repeating to himself that this was all fake, his heart still wavered in the moment that he saw his father’s state.
It wasn’t that his heart was weak, but the blood ties between father and son made his heart tremble almost uncontrollably in that moment.
It was innate, a resonance between bloodlines that could not be done away with.
Jiang Chen had trained the Boulder’s Heart after all. If it’d been anyone else in this illusion, they might have been gradually consumed by the illusion.
But Jiang Chen hadn’t believed what was in front of his eyes from beginning to end.
His father had indeed gone to the Upper Eighth Region, that was correct.
But a test of this level wasn’t enough to defeat Jiang Chen.
As he looked at the beasts pouncing towards him, Jiang Chen didn’t back up, but he pushed off his feet savagely and charged at the tree.
“All you illusions, break!”
Jiang Chen’s Divine Aeons Fist smashed heavily into the great tree, sparkling with the light of the mysteries of the ages.
The mysteries of one cycle of blooming and wilting were contained within that punch, and it too counted as a cycle of rebirth.
When he flung that punch out, all of the illusions vanished cleanly like clear glass being shattered.
“The path of rebirth can grasp everyone’s points of weakness alright. The Bridge of Helplessness was testing judgement, the Ocean of Divine Ashes was testing courage, Dan Fei’s appearance tested my resolution, and this was a test of rationality in the face of family.”
Every test was able to grasp the weakest part of everyone’s hearts.
This trial was something else, alright.
However, Jiang Chen’s Boulder’s Heart was even stronger and it wasn’t defeated by this level of illusion.
Although he didn’t know how many more tests lay in front of him, he still charged forward without hesitation.
Night passed as the daybreak of the second day arrived.
With the advent of dawn, the psychological pressures of night also began to slowly decrease.
However, this trial was also an enormous drain on one’s mental resources.
Jiang Chen’s Boulder’s Heart hadn’t been depleted much, but if the other practitioners hadn’t had special methods to train their mental strength, they would be weaker and weaker in the face of the tests to come if they didn’t sit down and meditate.
The more their mental strength was drained, the more pressure they would feel from future tests.
Once they’d exhausted themselves and lacked sufficient mental strength, they might very well be swallowed by the illusions and become one of the failed statistics.
Although Jiang Chen had met many tests along the way, this level of testing was not enough to truly impact his mentality.
The Boulder’s Heart was now at the seventh level, and his heart was as strong as a boulder. Even a little bit of impact wasn’t enough to affect him.
Keep moving forward!
Jiang Chen had no stray thoughts in his mind as he moved forward without any interference.
He saw an awe inspiring palace in the distance after roughly an hour.
The words “Myriad Treasures Pavilion” were written on it.
He looked around and saw no other path. He would have to enter the Myriad Treasures Pavilion to continue forward.
Jiang Chen warned himself that this place was another illusion again.
With that firmly in mind, he walked into the pavilion. A voice traveled to his ears as soon as he set foot inside.
“Welcome to the Myriad Treasures Pavilion. The pavilion is a wondrous place on the path of rebirth. You can select any method or martial art technique you want here, or any divine weapon, miraculous pill, or rare and exotic creature… remember, you can only choose one out of all the treasures here.”
The four forefathers were gathered in a place outside of the path of rebirth.
Icemist sighed lightly, “One third of the mundane practitioners have been disqualified up until now. This is indeed a stunning number. It looks like even ten thousand would be hard pressed to remain out of the four hundred thousand to walk the path.”
They’d estimated the two thirds would be eliminated on the path as it had layers upon layers of trials. To practitioners with weak strength of the heart, this would be a very, very difficult trial for them.
But a third of the group had been disqualified after less than a day. At this rate, the amount of people disqualified may far exceed their original expectations.
“Although the path of rebirth is not easy, it just so happens to test the strength of the heart. If they cannot even pass the trial of the heart, then the ones disqualified are just mediocre talents and they have no future ahead of them whatsoever. Since they are trash, what point is there to sigh with regret over them once they are out?” Sunchaser snorted.
He had no particular feeling towards the numbers of people disqualified.
What he cared more about was how many could remain, and if there were any dark horses that could enter their line of sight.
He felt that with the resources in the mundane world, there was no way that any geniuses that could fight for a spot in the final sixteen could exist amongst them.
Thousandleaf sighed, “They have yet to reach the hardest. The Myriad Treasures Pavilion is the biggest test of all. The last test after the pavilion is even greater. The rate of failure will be highest in the last two tests. I wonder if anyone’s made it to the pavilion yet?”
The forefather’s couldn’t see what was happening in the path of rebirth.
All was revealed only when the practitioner left the path of rebirth.
Ninelion laughed. “It’s only been less than a day. If someone’s already made it to the Myriad Treasures Pavilion, then their pace is simply too fast. I surmise that many are still dithering in front of the Ocean of Divine Ashes and some are even stuck in front of the Bridge of Helplessness?”
Icemist also nodded. “Indeed, if anyone’s made it to the Myriad Treasures Pavilion, then they would be an unparalleled genius. The strength of their heart of dao would be such that we would be hard pressed to find such a genius even in the four great sects?”
“What are you lot worried about? We’ll receive a notification as soon as someone passes through the pavilion.”
They couldn’t see what was happening on the path of rebirth from the outside world, but the pavilion was the only part of the path of rebirth that had a connection with the outside world.
The ancient venerated expert who had created the path of rebirth must have had his reasons for placing the Myriad Treasures Palace here. The outside world would receive notifications as soon as someone passed through the pavilion.