AST 1244 - Value, Guest Custodian, the strength of Western Oxhe Continent
“I have already finished talking about the main things today. The other thing is that I want to promote you to be a Guest Custodian. Are you fine with that?” the old man in the gold dragon gown smiled and said.
“Guest Custodian?” Qing Shui knew about the custodians. However, he also knew about the Saint Lord Custodian. But this was his first time hearing Guest Custodian.
“Actually, the Guest Custodian is just a normal custodian. It’s just that you won’t be restricted by other people. Even us, we do not have the authority to control you. Of course, you cannot ruin the reputation of Heaven Secrets Academy. Whenever the Heaven Secrets Academy is in trouble, so long as it’s not difficult for you, the Guest Custodians are obliged to help Heaven Secrets Academy out.” The old man looked at Qing Shui and said with a smile.
This condition indeed sounded really flexible. The reason being that the more powerful a person was, the more annoyed they would feel being restricted. Hence, an open-minded sect would give the person as much freedom as possible when the situation allowed it. Even if they had been more forceful with things, once the sect was endangered, the members wouldn’t be as helpful as those that were being loosely restricted. The most important thing about a sect was how united they were and helping their members find a sense of belonging. Of course, rules were very important but it definitely wasn’t the most crucial thing about a sect.
“I promise you. But I am already a disciple of Heaven Secrets Academy. Why don’t you just forget about the Custodian title? Wouldn’t this be even better?” Qing Shui smiled and looked at the old man.
“Haha, these words are the most important and can’t afford to be ignored. I can feel that you are very ambitious. Furthermore, what’s even weirder is that I have been having this feeling that there is a unique strength contained within your body. One day, you will definitely transform into a dragon among men and soar around the sky. By then, I hope that you can help look after the Heaven Secrets Academy. That’s all I ask for.”
Qing Shui knew about his own situation. He also felt that he would be able to do it. However, considering that the old man insisted on it, he definitely trusted his judgement. Other than that was the old man’s boldness. Qing Shui should be a nothing but a weakling in his eyes. However, the old man had actually opened up such a big door for him.
“Don’t worry about it. If a day like this really was to come, I would do it. Given that I am capable of doing so, I will help the Heaven Secrets Academy destroy the pattern of Western Oxhe Continent,” Qing Shui said firmly after thinking for a while.
“Alright, if you have anything you need which we can do, the Heaven Secrets Academy will do our best to aid you. Feel free to tell us what you need. We will try our best to satisfy your requests.” The old man in the gold dragon gown looked at Qing Shui seriously.
“Alright, old man, roughly how much strength does the strongest force within the Western Oxhe Continent possess?” Qing Shui felt that later on, he wanted to head off to the other dynasties within Western Oxhe Continent. It was said, “To know one's own strength and the enemy's is the sure way to victory”. Besides, he was also curious about it.
“The top force within the Western Oxhe Continent is roughly at eight thousand sun. I’m not sure whether this is accurate,” after thinking for a while, the old man in the gold dragon gown smiled and said.
Qing Shui slightly knitted his brows. He himself also didn’t know if this strength was considered unusually high. In any case, it should be considered to be quite high by right. After all, his current stable strength was about three hundred to six hundred sun. The doubling of prowess which he got from time to time couldn’t be considered part of its strength as it only appeared very occasionally.
“Do you really not find it that terrifying? Actually, three thousand sun is a cut-off point. Around five thousand sun on the other hand, it is a huge cut-off point. The same also applies to eight thousand sun. For example, once someone reaches three thousand sun, they will meet a bottleneck. A bottleneck which is very hard to break through. So much so that it may be as hard as climbing up to heaven.” The old man smiled and looked at Qing Shui.
Qing Shui felt a bit embarrassed. After all, despite him possessing such little strength, he already found eight thousand sun worth of strength a little low. Now, he had also come to understand that as someone progressed further in their cultivation, despite the fact that they might experience a significant increase in their strength, simultaneously, it would be even more difficult for them to increase it as they progressed forward.
“I see, the journey of cultivation is indeed tough!” Qing Shui said in awe.
“You are still young. Your youth is your asset. Once you reach a certain age, your strength will naturally follow it and increase. Or maybe, it will get raised even higher by then.”
Qing Shui only left after staying in the Heaven Secrets Courtyard for more than half a day. His courtyard has once again been moved. This time, it had been moved to a spot located not far away from Eldest Princess. Qing Shui didn’t know if the old man did it on purpose. Logically speaking, with his identity, this shouldn’t be the place he lived in.
Furthermore, the old man also gave him a key. This was one of the treasures which the old man rewarded him with. Or rather, it was the key to a room filled with treasures. Originally, Qing Shui intended to reject it. But as he thought deeper into it, he gave up this intention. This was a reward given to him for the future. Furthermore, there were also a few more people from the Heaven Secrets Academy which were rewarded with these rooms.
Qing Shui didn’t rush to look for the treasury. Instead, he first headed back to his old courtyard. He brought Qing Sha along and together they moved over.
Qing Shui only found out that this courtyard was the closest to Eldest Princess’ courtyard upon heading there along with Qing Sha. Originally, there were courtyards all around the place where Eldest Princess lived but they were all empty. However now, they had all been given to him.
Not long after Qing Shui and Qing Sha went to the courtyard, Eldest Princess came. The expression she had when looking at Qing Shui was really weird. Qing Shui felt a bit embarrassed being stared at by her like that, “This is something which the headmaster rewarded me with. I don’t know how I ended up here……”
Even Qing Shui found it hard to believe, let alone Eldest Princess. This was a place specifically for elders. However, it was even higher than that of normal elders. This had something to do with her master. Most importantly, her master had told her before that no other people can live around her, especially men. But now, the person living closest to her was a man.
“What are you trying to explain? It’s not like I am trying to chase you away.” Eldest Princess found Qing Shui’s expression when he was helpless a bit funny.
“Well, I’m just scared you won’t like it.” When Qing Shui heard her words, he felt relieved.
“Oh, are you that scared of me?” Eldest Princess asked in surprise. Her eyes seemed a bit crafty.
“Er… Not really, I’m just scared that it might upset you. After all, we are neighbours now. We should help each other.”
Eldest Princess smiled and looked at Qing Shui without blinking her eyes. Soon, Qing Shui also found himself a bit speechless. He had no choice but to mock himself and stop.
“So we are only neighbours.”
“Er, Sister Su, I’m just kidding. How about this, tonight, this little lass and I will move to your……”
“In your dreams. Alright, let’s go. Stop complaining.” Eldest Princess also knew that Qing Shui was just kidding. She felt really happy. Her lifestyle now was something which she never would have expected in the past.
Even her own master told her that she had changed. But her master liked the way she was living now. She remembered her master telling her this, cultivation didn’t mean moving away from the world. Only through feeling emotions and comprehending your own heart would you be able to experience the meaning within it. This was the real cultivation.
The courtyard here looked almost the same as Eldest Princess’. Actually, Eldest Princess wasn’t aware that other than the area where she lived in, the rest of the areas in the surroundings had all become Qing Shui’s. Compared to where Qing Shui lived previously, this place was a lot better. Although the size of the residence didn’t increase too much, the main thing about it was the decoration and the scenery in the courtyard. Also, the formation used to cultivate had been upgraded a lot.
Both Yan Jinyu and Seventh Princess came. Qing Shui gave them the other two courtyards in the surroundings. By the time they found out the news was real, they were incomparably happy. The reason being that by using the formation in here, one’s cultivation speed would become a lot faster. Most importantly, even though this place was made for elder grade warriors, the way the formations were set up in here, most of them were a lot better than those used by elders.
“This is great! In the future, it would be so much easier for us to get rice. Unlike before, it doesn’t look good to travel such a long distance just to get rice.” Seventh Princess said happily after she confirmed this was real.
Yan Jinyu on the other hand, smiled and didn’t say anything. She was staring at Qing Shui with her eyes. Deep down in her heart, she was also really stunned with Qing Shui’s changes throughout these days.
In the middle of the afternoon, Qing Shui took out the unique key and walked deep into the mountain. The Heaven Secrets Academy’s treasury was scattered in a lot of places. Each of them would have a lot of rooms as well. Furthermore, they all had professional people guarding them.
Qing Shui headed towards the address which the old man gave him. This was a place with a lot of mountains, causing it to seem really messy. From high-up, one could only see it as an enormous mountainous region. Plenty of the mountains penetrated straight through the clouds, completely covering the bottom. It was just like a tunnel and Qing Shui was currently shuttling through it.
In addition to that, there were also a lot of junctions. The rocks here were very tough. They looked murky and dull. Also, they seemed to be unusually humid. Within it grew things like mosses and such. From time to time, there would also be small wild beasts and worms which were all scared away by Qing Shui.
The atmosphere here told Qing Shui that no one had been here in a very long time. It didn’t actually feel that stuffy. This might have been the effect of the spiritual qi within the mountain or the effect of those mosses. Instead, the air felt a bit fresh and clean. Of course, it still couldn’t be compared to the air outside.
Qing Shui was swiftly shuttling through it. If he was to head there by air, the distance would be relatively short. But it would be very hard to find the exact location unless he travelled by ground. A lot of people would pass through the mountains to head there whereas some would choose to go there through the underground. The majority of the people could tell that it was an artifact.
Qing Shui didn’t know when, he had started having the feeling that he was walking along an underground tunnel. At first, he thought that the surroundings were all rocks but now, he realized that they were a kind of earth stone. It was also through this that he found out he was currently underground.
Suddenly, Qing Shui got his attention caught by the things in front of him. What appeared ahead was a relatively wide area. To his surprise, there were tiny bits of light around it. This was an area which resembled a tent. By that, it meant that one would feel as if they were in a tent staying here. The top part of the area had tiny bits of lights dropping down from it. It looked just like stars. However, those were only pores which led to the outside.
Around the walls in the surroundings, there were a few stone walls. At this moment, a few elderly men suddenly appeared around the area. These old men looked old, like withered trees. The feeling they gave others was a bit gloomy.
A gloomy and cold voice came through.
Qing Shui took out the token which the old man in the gold dragon gown gave him. There was a number carved on top of it.
“Go to the hidden room that matches the number on your token. Don’t go near the other rooms. Or else, don’t blame us if you die.” Once they finished speaking, the old men from before disappeared like demons. Just like when they first appeared, they disappeared very quietly.
Qing Shui shook his head. Every one of the old men here were very powerful. They should be one of the groups in charge of protecting the treasures in Heaven Secrets Academy.
He took out a heavy key which was about a foot long and inserted it into the key lock. This place was set up with a lot of formations. Once someone attempted to destroy them by force, they would be activated. Furthermore, the door to the hidden room was made of an unusual kind of metal. It was extremely tough. Unfortunately, it wasn’t suitable to make weapons.
This was a trapdoor. Once it got destroyed, the hidden room would also collapse.
Qing Shui was twisting it very quickly with his hands. This lock was very complicated. With Qing Shui’s speed, he actually twisted it more than a hundred times. The only thing heard was a heavy noise. The door of the hidden room finally opened.
Actually, Qing Shui had always been interested in learning about traps. Unfortunately, he had never had the chance to interact closely with them. The stone door opened. The only thing which entered his eyes was a long flight of steps extending downwards. There were things like Night Pearls on the side providing a dim radiance so he could still see somewhat.
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