Lu Dongbin didn’t mask his voice at all. It echoed throughout the entire main hall of the Skylight Palace, and all of the nearly thousand Celestial Immortals as well as the various Wanxiang Adepts were all incomparably surprised.
“Exalted Immortal Eastflower is taking on that little girl of the Black-White College?”
“Why is Lu Dongbin taking on this little girl?”
“Lu Dongbin’s judgement is exceptional. Even I would like to take him on as a master, but he wouldn’t even look at me! But why is it that today…”
Many of the Celestial Immortals present were rather jealous. Becoming the disciple of a Daofather was a stroke of tremendous karmic fortune! They didn’t even dare to dream of such a thing, and so most of them actually hoped for becoming a disciple of a Pure Yang True Immortal.
Lu Dongbin was one of the very top True Immortals or Empyrean Gods, and his background was incredible as well. He was also superb at teaching his students! He was a passionate man, and whenever he took on a disciple, he would use all his heart in training them. Compared to him, many of the other True Immortals or Empyrean Gods were focusing on training in the Dao, and didn’t care as much about their disciples.
“The legendary Lu Dongbin?” The Wanxiang Adepts, such as Adept Ninedeaths, Cangwu Jiu, Xiangtian Xiao, Youngflame Zhan, and the others all turned red-eyed with jealousy. They had fought into the top ninety-six, and some had even fought into the top twelve or top six!
Lu Dongbin’s fame was such that even many ordinary mortals and commoners had heard of it. This was because figures such as Houyi, Father Kua, and the Eight Immortals of the High Caves were simply too famous and too well-known in the legends. As for Lu Dongbin…he was the leader of the Eight Immortals of the High Caves!
Although they were red-eyed with jealousy, the Celestial Immortals all knew that this was the type of person Lu Dongbin was.
“Are you willing?” Lu Dongbin asked once again.
Yu Wei was stunned. This sudden, unexpected surprise had made her somewhat speechless. Of course she was willing! Who wouldn’t be willing to be an apprentice to Lu Dongbin? This was something that was second to only becoming a Daofather’s disciple!
But she had just become Dao-companions with Ji Ning…were they going to be separated just like this?
Yu Wei turned her head to look towards the distant Ning. Ning understood what she was feeling. Although he couldn’t bear to let her go, he knew that Yu Wei was also a person whose heart was focused on the Dao. He nodded gently.
“Don’t feel too much regret for your little lover.” Lu Dongbin saw Yu Wei turn her head towards Ji Ning. He explained, “Your little lover is definitely going to become an apprentice to a True Immortal or Empyrean God as well; he’s definitely going to spend some time by their side. And so, regardless of whether or not you accept me as your master, in a short period of time, Ji Ning himself will depart from the world of the Grand Xia.”
Yu Wei now understood. She gave the distant Ning another glance. Ning himself repeatedly gestured with his eyes at her while nodding.
“Can I ask how long it will be?” Yu Wei asked nervously.
“At least a few decades, at most a century,” Lu Dongbin said with a laugh. “Don’t worry; once I hear that Ji Ning has returned to the world of the Grand Xia, I will soon let you come back and reunite with your little lover.”
Yu Wei said with desire, “Then can Ji Ning take you on as his master as well?” She knew that Lu Dongbin was a Sword Immortal; he was quite suited to teach Ning.
“I want that too,” Lu Dongbin said, shaking his head and sighing. “But unfortunately, this Grand Xia Emperor of yours won’t allow it no matter what.” As he spoke, he gave the Xia Emperor a glance.
The Xia Emperor just sat there smiling, not saying a single word. Clearly…there was no room for discussion on this at all!
Yu Wei nodded. She no longer hesitated at all. Falling to her knees, she called out respectfully, “Your disciple greets you, Master.”
“Hahaha…” Lu Dongbin began to laugh loudly. “Good, good, good. To be able to take on a good disciple such as you…this trip of mine to this Conclave was worth it. Yu Wei, go spend some more time with your little lover; in a short while, when the Conclave concludes, we shall leave this world of the Grand Xia.”
“Yes, Master.” Yu Wei once more headed right back to Ning’s side.
“Yu Wei, congratulations.” Yuchi Xiyue was very happy for Yu Wei. Her cousin’s Dao-companion had become Lu Dongbin’s apprentice; this was a joyous matter indeed.
“Ji Ning, after this Conclave concludes, the True Immortals and Empyrean Gods will leave. Master will take me away from this world of the Grand Xia as well.” Yu Wei had a look of longing in her eyes.
Ning gently took Yu Wei’s hand in his own. “Both of our hearts are focused on the Dao. An opportunity like this is rare; how can we let it pass by? In addition, I’m going to be apprenticed to a True Immortal or Empyrean God as well. By then, I’ll be stayed permanently by Master’s side…and I too shall leave this world of the Grand Xia.”
Although he wasn’t going to be able to become a Daofather’s apprentice…by becoming a True Immortal or Empyrean God’s apprentice, he would still have a powerful backer! He would also learn more about the various powers within the Three Realms! Ning had already decided to spend some time alongside the True Immortal or Empyrean God and focus on training with him or her.
Yu Wei nodded. “Master said the same thing. He will probably take me away for a few decades, no more than a century. Once you come back, Ji Ning…Master will know and will quickly release me as well.”
“We’ll both work hard,” Ning said softly. “We are both going to overcome the Celestial Tribulation and become Celestial Immortals. We truly be together for eternity.”
“Together for eternity.” Yu Wei nodded as well, her eyes slightly red. To be by the side of her lover for all eternity…how beautiful that would be.
“But can I truly be together for eternity with Ji Ning?” Yu Wei once more thought back to her past life, and her heart began to be filled with a surge of terror. “…no matter what, I will rather let my soul be destroyed than harm Ji Ning in the slightest. At least before I die…everything will be perfect.”
Within one of the trillion minor worlds of the Three Realms.
This was a beautiful world with fragrant flowers and chirping birds. The people were simple folk. Although the world was separated into three nations, they usually just engaged in shouting matches against each other. Occasionally, some Immortal cultivators would compete against each other in order to win some advantages for their respective nations, but actual large-scale wars were very rare.
Whoosh. A tear in space appeared.
The white-robed Xia Emperor strode out from the void. Upon arriving within this minor world, he soon headed towards a mountain. Atop the mountain, there was a Daoist monastery, known as the Evergreen Monastery. Evergreen Monastery was extremely ordinary, and in this minor world very few knew of it. It was only known in the nearby counties and towns.
How could the people of this minor world have any idea that within this Evergreen Monastery, there was a truly exalted and peerless Sword Immortal.
“Junior apprentice-brother Evergreen, so all you do is train in the Dao alongside your four or five novices within this crappy monastery?” The white-robed Xia Emperor went to the back of the monastery, where several farm plots were located. A young man was next to a pool of water.
“You can manage your major world. As for myself, I have nothing holding me back. Why should I trouble myself with various things?” The young man said calmly.
“What about your disciples?” The white-robed Xia Emperor shook his head. “If you are going to stay in this monastery, why don’t you bring those disciples of yours over and give them some good tutelage.”
“Teachers can show you the way, but cultivation relies on one’s own abilities. I guided them for ten years and taught everything which I should’ve taught. It is enough. As for what they will end up like, and as for whether or not they will become Celestial Immortals…there’s nothing more I can do.” The young man sat down casually, scooping up a ladle of water from the water bucket in front of him and drinking it. He sighed to himself, “Such sweet water.”
The white-robed Xia Emperor felt resigned. Anyone capable of becoming a True Immortal or an Empyrean God was an expert of the Three Realms; even the Celestial Court would have to treat them with courtesy. Every person had a different personality. He was unable to persuade this junior apprentice-brother of his.
“I’ve come on Master’s orders,” the white-robed Xia Emperor said.
“Master?” The young man immediately became serious.
The white-robed Xia Emperor said. “You know that three or so decades ago, the Six Realms of Reincarnation suffered an attack and collapsed. The Three Realms are filled with hidden, dangerous undercurrents. A major storm is most likely coming, and it is unavoidable. And…the more chaotic an era, the more heroes will emerge from it into the Three Realms.”
The young man nodded.
“My Grand Xia world is blessed by karmic luck. During this Conclave of Immortal Destiny, even Master choose one of the top three to be his disciple, a man named Adept Woodpass. Even a disciple of Grand Emperor Xuanwu appeared in this Conclave,” the white-robed Xia Emperor said.
“Oh?” The white-robed man said in surprise, “One Conclave, two Daofather disciples?”
“According to Master’s instructions, all three of the top three in this Conclave are to be brought into our Crimsonbright League. Master himself chose Adept Woodpass, while the other two are known as Adept Blackstone and Ji Ning. Ji Ning is a potential peerless Sword Immortal; he’s only trained for thirty years, and even Lu Dongbin wanted to take him as a disciple. I didn’t let that happen, though. In addition…he was born shortly after the Six Paths of Reincarnation were destroyed. Perhaps he truly is blessed by tremendous luck,” the white-robed Xia Emperor said in a persuasive manner.
“No need to try and sway me.” The young man shook his head. “Whether or not Lu Dongbin takes on a disciple has nothing to do with me. That personality of his…he can even take on ordinary mortals as disciples. As for the fact that this Ji Ning has trained for just thirty years, and was born shortly after the collapse of the Six Paths of Reincarnation…that’s an utter joke!”
“The reason why heroes emerge from periods of chaos in the Three Realms is because those periods are periods of constant battle. Many experts will die, and their luck will dissipate from them and gather around others…” The young man continued, “With each storm in the Three Realms, old experts fall and new experts rise. Even some Daofathers fall, while new Daofathers emerge. The total number of experts in the Three Realms has remained constant.”
“Whether or not one will become an expert depends entirely on whether or not one can seize the right opportunity during periods of chaos in the Three Realms!”
“As for the time of their birth? Hmph, try that line on someone else.”
The young man wasn’t swayed in the slightest.
The white-robed Xia Emperor could only laugh.
Even Daofathers could re-establish the cycle of reincarnation! Everyone knew what the secrets of reincarnation were. A person’s destiny, however, wasn’t determined by their birth; what mattered was what happened to them after it! Nobody was guaranteed to be a Daofather upon birth! There was no such thing. At most, one might be born into a good family, thanks to good karma stored up from a past life.
“And, senior apprentice-brother…it’s not that I want to criticize you,” the young man said, “But so what if a storm is coming to the Three Realms? Whether or not one takes on a disciple doesn’t matter at all. What matters is one’s personal power!”
“The only ones we can trust, that we can control, are ourselves!”
“Disciples can turn traitor. Subordinates can turn traitor. Even friends can stab you in the back…only by increasing your own power can you fundamentally grow strong,” the young man said. “As far as I am concerned, this period of chaos in the Three Realms is a chance for me, Evergreen, to break through to become a Daofather of the Great Firmament. As for taking on disciples? Even if my disciple trained to become a Daofather, it wouldn’t mean a damn thing for me!”
The white-robed Xia Emperor no longer said anything. He and Sword Immortal Evergreen were on two completely different paths; he himself was born from the lineage of the Primordial Imperial Clan, and so his way of thinking was naturally different. He immediately took out a scroll. “Take a look. These are the scenes of Ji Ning’s duels.”
The scroll unfurled. One scene of battle appeared after another.
“A Sword Immortal?” The young man nodded. He gave the white-robed Xia Empror a small azure sword. “This kid truly is quite talented. Since Master has ordered it, then I shall take on this Ji Ning as my apprentice. This is my talisman; arrange for someone to give it to him. If he is willing to take me on as Master, then let him crush it within ten days, and I will go find him. After ten days, the talisman will automatically dissipate.”
Even if a master was willing to accept an apprentice, the apprentice also had to be willing to take on this master.
Lu Dongbin had needed to ask Yu Wei for her agreement. The same was true for Sword Immortal Evergreen. If Ji Ning wasn’t willing…then given his arrogance as a Pure Yang True Immortal, he naturally wouldn’t run over to beg Ning to accept him.
“Alright.” The white-robed Xia Emperor accepted the little azure sword, then said with a laugh, “Then junior apprentice-brother, I won’t disturb your leisurely life in your monastery any more.” After speaking, he vanished into thin air.