As a half-step Elder God, Ji Ning possessed incredibly sharp vision. When he swept the island with his gaze, he saw many Immortal palaces, flying arks, and mazes that were extremely famous in the Three Realms. Many were treasures belonging to True Gods and Daofathers, and all of them possessed extremely powerful defenses.
“Junior apprentice-sister, look, that’s Sword Immortal Darknorth.”
“So he is Ji Ning?”
“I heard Father say that Sword Immortal Darknorth’s sword-arts are absolutely astonishing. In fact, his sword-arts are the best sword-arts of the Three Realms, and he’s just as powerful as Father is.”
“Best in the Three Realms? That’s a bit exaggerated, isn’t it? He’s simply mastered the [Five Treasures]; his swordforce is still merely at the fourth stage. His true body has been wiped out by the Seamless Gate as well. When he was using the Envoy, he was perhaps comparable to Master, but I heard that the Envoy’s been ruined. With his true body lost as well…he surely is much weaker than Master now. He was born at the wrong time. If he was given another ten thousand years, he would probably be far more powerful than he is now.”
“Look. That’s Ji Ning over there.”
“Sword Immortal Darknorth?”
“Such a pity. I heard that he was ambushed by the Seamless Gate.”
“The killer was Swordfather Darklight…supposedly, he was killed by Houyi afterwards. Houyi truly is incredible. He didn’t even use his arrows; he just used a single blow from his hatchet to kill Swordfather Darklight.”
“My senior apprentice-sister told me that Ji Ning’s talent is absolutely incredible. He’s no less talented than Houyi.”
“Perhaps. But for now, there’s no way that Ji Ning can be compared to Houyi; the difference in power is simply too great. If his true body was still alive, then after a few million years he would perhaps be a match for Houyi. Now, however…there’s no hope of it happening.”
The island wasn’t that large, just a few hundred thousand kilometers in size. Given how many Immortals were present, quite a few noticed as soon as Ning arrived on the island. All of them felt pity for Ning. They all felt that Ning had been born at the wrong time! He was born with utterly astonishing talent, but alas he had been born just a little too late.
“What’s going on? So many treasures have appeared here, and the secret formation protecting this island is utterly terrifying…” Ning’s heart was filled with questions. “And these Immortals…there are even Empyrean Gods and True Immortals here, many of whom are the descendants and progency of major powers.”
“Come over here.” A mental message was sent to him.
Ning turned to look in towards the direction from which the message had come. His eyes were filled with torch-light, and he was able to see a seemingly ordinary Daoist monastery looked far off in the distance.
“Master?” Ning was truly stunned now. This was the monastery which Patriarch Subhuti lived in. It had been located on Mount Innerheart for countless years. Why did it now appear atop this island?
Swoosh. Ning immediately flew a hundred thousand kilometers before landing before the monastery.
“Uncle-master.” Standing at the entrance of the monastery were the two Dao-novices, Clearwater and Whiteriver. Both of them called out quite respectfully, and their eyes were filled with curiosity and admiration as they stared at Ning.
Ning relaxed slightly upon seeing these two ‘children’. Their presence meant that everything should be fine. Ning immediately strode into the monastery.
Soon, he saw the white-haired Patriarch Subhuti seated on the ground in the distance.
“Master.” Ning immediately walked towards him, then respectfully knelt on the ground.
“Sit.” Subhuti smiled as he looked at Ning.
Ning sat down in the lotus position as he looked at his master.
“Aren’t you curious?” Subhuti looked at Ning.
“Of course I am.” Ning nodded. “The Crescent world…in the past, this island didn’t exist. Now, it suddenly has appeared out of nowhere, and has such a terrifying formation protecting it! The estate-treasures, palaces, and flying arks of many major powers are here as well, as well as many of their disciples and progeny. And you, Master…you actually moved your own monastery here as well!”
“Master, can it be that the major powers of the Three Realms are using this place as their refuge?” Ning frowned.
Subhuti nodded. “This place has indeed become a place of refuge.”
Ning felt an uneasy feeling in his heart.
“Master, Lord Tathagata the Buddha, Daoist Three Purities, the Primordial Imperial Clan…they each have their own abilities. It shouldn’t be hard for them to protect their disciples and progeny. Why is it that they’ve all been moved over to the Crescent world?” Ning hurriedly asked, “Has the war taken a turn for the worse?”
“It has indeed, but we are doing this just to prepare for the worst,” Subhuti said.
“It really has taken a turn for the worse?” Ning was shocked. He had only spent six years in the prisonworld. How could such drastic changes have occurred in the outside world?
“What’s going on?” Ning immediately asked.
“Listen to me carefully,” Subhuti said. “When the Seamless Gate ambushed you, we negotiated with them and agreed that they were no longer to use Envoys in the war for karmic luck, while you were not to participate either. After the negotiations, the Realmwars began once more, and everything proceeded as we expected. However, half a year ago…”
Ning was secretly shocked. Something unexpected had happened half a year ago?”
“Half a year ago, Daoist Three Purities could sense that given how ferocious the war for karmic luck had become, as soon as it ended the Endwar would immediately begin! Aside from our two sides, there are two other forces that we have to reckon with. If they aren’t dealt with, then it is very possible that those two forces will take advantage of our conflict to become the final winner.”
“Two other forces?” Ning was stunned.
“The first is Old Man Yuan’s forces,” Patriarch Subhuti said. “The Four Ancestors of the River Source aren’t that powerful; before the Endwar begins, they will have to choose to join one side or another. In truth, they aren’t powerful enough to try and take advantage of the war to become the final victor.”
“The second, however…is the Primordial Ruinworld!” Patriarch Subhuti had a solemn look on his face.
Ning was suddenly jolted.
The Primordial Ruinworld?
The Primordial Ruinworld! He had been so focused on the Seamless Gate that he had nearly forgotten the Primordial Ruinworld. When he had been exiled into the Nihilum Zone, he had suffered attacks from the Snaphorn world of the Primordial Ruinworld. In the end, it had been his master Subhuti who had intervened to rescue him and wipe out those three Queen Mothers. The Snaphorn world was just a weak power in the Primordial Ruinworld; if the entire Ruinworld rose up together, they would constitute a terrifyingly powerful force! Not even True Gods or Daofathers would dare to casually enter the Primordial Ruinworld; they could very well die if they did!
“The Primordial Ruinworld is far more powerful than the Four Ancestors of the River Source,” Patriarch Subhuti said. “After the war that ended the Primordial Era, Mother Nuwa drove all of those alien Outsiders into the harsh environment of the Primordial Ruinworld.”
Ning nodded. The Primordial Ruinworld’s environment was indeed harsh and inhospitable. Both space and time were scrambled there. The environment itself was quite deadly; ordinary True Gods and Daofathers could easily die if they encountered a shattered region of spacetime.
“When Mother Nuwa became a Pangu-level divinity,” Subhuti explained, “She invincibly dominated all her opponents. The reason why she didn’t wipe out the alien Outsiders was because she wanted to leave them behind for us as ‘neighbors’, constantly reminding us of the importance of being vigilant. We were to never again engage in internal civil wars. In fact, their very existence was a way of subtly ensuring that we would continue to train and grow more powerful.”
“Mother Nuwa’s actions were quite correct, and we agreed with them back then. During the Primordial Era there were no outside invaders and so we constantly engaged in internal wars, causing many major powers to perish.”
“Ever since Mother Nuwa left them behind, we have never again engaged in large-scale civil wars,” Subhuti said. “In fact, experts from the Three Realms will often enter the Primordial Ruinworld region to test and temper themselves. This has resulted in the Immortals and Fiendgods of the Nuwa Alliance to constantly grow more powerful, resulting in quite a few new True Gods and Daofathers being born.”
Ning nodded. An outside threat was a good way to ensure internal unity.
“Daoist Three Purities decided that before we were to begin the Endwar against the Seamless Gate, we should first deal with the Primordial Ruinworld,” Patriarch Subhuti said. “Those alien Outsiders have been forced to live in the deadly Ruinworlds, and they have always wished to enter our Three Realms. Once both the Seamless Gate and our Nuwa Alliance are both exhausted by the Endwar, they will definitely seize this opportunity to invade from the Primordial Ruinworld.”
“Right.” Ning agreed with this.
“And so, we raised this mater with the Seamless Gate. Since there’s no way to avoid the Endwar, it would be best if both sides join together to deal with this future threat first.” Patriarch Subhuti shook his head. “But the Seamless Gate was completely disinterested in fighting against the Primordial Ruinworld.”
“They weren’t interested?” Ning was puzzled. “Why is that? Do they want to leave it up to us to handle? They want the Nuwa Alliance to waste its own power? But…but they aren’t fools. They should understand that if we don’t get rid of the Primordial Ruinworld, neither side can fight the Endwar with confidence.”
“It’s not as simple as you think.” Subhuti shook his head. “Several other major powers and I have been investigating in secret. We’ve discovered…that the Primordial Ruinworld is now filled with many, many terrifyingly powerful formations. Fuxi has looked at these formations, and he can recognize them as being the work of Keeper Everwood.”
“Master…” Ning was shocked. “Did you just say that the Primordial Ruinworld is filled with many formations that were laid down by Keeper Everwood?”
“Yes.” Subhuti nodded. “We can say with a 90% certainty that the Primordial Ruinworld allied in secret with the Seamless Gate a long time ago.”
A cold look was in Subhuti’s eyes. “The Seamless Gate…we permitted them to remain in the Three Realms and live amongst us, but now, for the sake of winning the Endwar, they actually dare to ally with those alien Outsiders? Have they forgotten? The great war between the two chaosworlds was instigated by those alien Outsiders to begin with! Hmph. Hmph! Enough of that. As far as those of us from the Pangu Chaosworld are concerned, the Seamless Gate is also an organization of alien Outsiders.”
“Then what should we do?” Ning quickly asked.
“You saw it for yourself. The Crescent world has become a place of refuge.” Subhuti said coldly. “We have already sent a strike force of major powers deep into the Primordial Ruinworld. We are going to wipe out all of the alien Outsiders within the Ruinworld!”