The waters of the river began to flow once more.
Ji Ning stood there in midair, a look of anger and pain in his eyes.
“Old Man Yuan has actually, truly joined the Seamless Gate. Didn’t he say that he doesn’t wish to get involved in the struggles of the Three realms?” Ning had felt gratitude towards Old Man Yuan. Although Ning felt some astonishment at the power which Old Man Yuan had revealed, his primary feeling right now was anguish at the betrayal. His master Subhuti had been very close to Old Man Yuan; most likely, Subhuti would be heartbroken as well.
Three figures suddenly appeared in quick succession next to Ning. First was Subhuti, who emerged from a spatial vortex. Next was Daoist Three Purities. Last was Exalted Celestial Carefree.
“Elder brother Yuan actually…” Exalted Celestial Carefree was trembling, a look of disbelief in his eyes.
“You still refer to him as ‘elder brother’?” A fierce, cold light was flickering in the eyes of Daoist Three Purities. “I truly never imagined that a traitor would emerge amongst our gang of brothers! If he left the Three Realms, that would be one thing…but he’s actually joined the Seamless Gate? Fine. Fine! Subhuti, Zixiu, mark my words well. From this day forth, Daoist Yuan is our enemy, not our friend!”
“Agreed.” Exalted Celestial Carefree nodded slowly.
“Traitor.” Subhuti clenched his jaw, pain visible in his eyes. “I didn’t imagine this. I never would have imagined this. He told me face-to-face that he was going to leave the Three Realms…and then he immediately attacked Ji Ning! Despicable, vile, traitorous wretch!”
Daoist Three Purities looked towards Subhuti.
Subhuti and Old Man Yuan had originally been extremely close to each other. They were like true brothers. Daoist Yuan’s betrayal…it probably hurt Subhuti more than anyone else in the Nuwa Alliance.
“There will always be a few black sheep in every flock.” Daoist Three Purities let out a sigh. “Subhuti, don’t grieve too much for his sake.”
“Grieve? No. I won’t grieve.” Subhuti laughed coldly. “I hope he dies.”
Ning could tell that although his master was putting on a stiff upper lift, he was so angry that his entire body was visibly trembling. Ning understood just how heavy a blow this had been to his master and so he hurriedly changed the topic. “Just now, when Daoist Yuan assaulted me, he used a heartforce technique…which is why I now know that he has actually reached the fifth stage of heartforce.”
“The fifth stage of heartforce?” Three Purities, Subhuti, and Carefree were all shocked.
Although they had sensed the battle which had just occurred, they weren’t able to notice the heartforce attack from such a great distance.
“Yes, the fifth stage.” Ning nodded, frowning. “He’s different from senior apprentice-brother Houyi. Senior apprentice-brother Houyi focuses his heartforce on his archery, giving his arrows utterly inconceivable power. Daoist Yuan, however…he uses heartforce in a more mysterious manner. He was able to weaponize it and use it to directly attack my soul. Fortunately, my soul was strong enough to resist it.”
“Directly attack the soul?”
“That spells trouble.”
Subhuti, Three Purities, and Carefree all understood that this was going to be quite troublesome.
“That wretch must’ve been planning to take advantage of the fact that you just recently became a True God, Ji Ning.” Subhuti said coldly, “His guess was that your soul would be fairly weak, as it hadn’t had much time to be nurtured and strengthened by your True God body. That’s why he attempted this ambush.”
“Right.” Ning nodded. He had actually become a True God even before the campaign against the Primordial Ruinworld, and was a half-step Elder God at that. His divine body was significantly more powerful than the divine bodies of most True Gods. Given that he also had the heartforce soul-lock technique…this time, Daoist Yuan really had rammed into a steel plate!
“Daoist Yuan…he was able to defend against Ji Ning’s sword, and his heartforce has reached the fifth stage.” Daoist Three Purities said in a low voice, “And he’s also joined the Seamless Gate…his ambitions must be enormous! Tremendously powerful and incredibly ambitious…we have to be very wary of him.”
“Agreed.” Everyone present felt heaviness in their hearts.
They felt furious disappointment in the man as well as a deep sense of wariness.
Old Man Yuan had finally made his choice. He led the Four Ancestors of the River Source and all of their allies in joining the Seamless Gate. The Four Ancestors of the River Source and their allies were all completely loyal to Old Man Yuan. When he had been wavering between the two sides, the other experts had all chosen to wait for his decision…and now, they all followed him in joining the Seamless Gate.
This was a testament to how unified a force the Four Ancestors were.
“From this day forth, Daoist Yuan is an enemy of the Nuwa Alliance. He is no longer a friend. Once the Endwar begins, we’ll have to seize every opportunity possible to kill him.” Daoist Three Purities was speaking within the Allclans Palace, his words filled with a killing intent. All of the major powers present fully agreed with his words.
Daoist Yuan’s betrayal had truly enraged them!
Time continued to flow on.
The Realmwars continued to proceed unabated within the Three Realms, and the size and scope of each Realmwar grew larger and larger. A hundred and ten years had passed after the end of the campaign against the Primordial Ruinworld, and with each Realmwar both sides would field more than three thousand Empyrean Gods and True Immortals.
Both alliances could sense that the end was nigh! The Endwar was about to start at any moment!
They didn’t have to necessarily wait for the war for karmic luck to end…once one side could sense that there was no longer any hope of winning the war for karmic luck, it was entirely possible that they would launch the Endwar early.
The mood in both alliances was quite depressed as a result! Everyone was preparing for the final battle.
The Celestial Realm. Mount Ling in the eastern lands.
There were a pair of Buddhist novitiates standing guard before an ordinary-looking hall here. Within the hall was Buddha Jueming, who was seated there completely unmoving like a statue. He was in complete solitude, without any sign of life about him at all. It was as though he was a corpse.
The statue-like Buddha Jueming suddenly opened his eyes in a very, very slow manner.
“The Realmwar over the Shennong major world has begun?” Buddha Jueming murmured softly to himself, “The flames of war have filled the entire Three Realms. Even the Shennong major world has been embroiled into war. It has only been a hundred and fifty years since the war against the Primordial Ruinworld. Things are progressing too quickly. If this continues…the end to the war for karmic luck shall arrive in a few scant decades.”
The final battle for karmic luck would result in all of the Empyrean Gods and True Immortals in both alliances engaging in one final clash.
When this happened, all of the powerful Immortals and Fiendgods of the Three Realms aside from the True Gods and Daofathers would be dragged into the battle. If one side felt that things were going poorly, the True Gods and Daofathers might directly intervene, resulting in the Endwar beginning.
“Within fifty years…” Buddha Jueming slowly rose to his feet.
Fifty years was a fairly loose estimate. If things progressed quickly within the Shennong major world, for example, it was entirely possible that the final battle for karmic luck would conclude in ten or twenty years.
“The lifeblood oath I swore was to leave the Three Realms within a thousand years of becoming an Elder God and go search for Vastheaven Palace.” Buddha Jueming murmured to himself, “The Endwar could break out at any moment now…and I need time to break through from the True God level to the Elder God level. If I wait for the Endwar to actually begin before making my breakthrough, I’ll just be delaying the inevitable. Mmm…let it begin now.”
Buddha Jueming disappeared from the hall, with the two Buddhist novitiates being none the wiser.
Atop a black star located deep in the endless primordial chaos.
An enormous Buddhist lotus flower had descended upon the surface of this star, and seated in the lotus position atop it was Buddha Jueming.
The primordial chaos around the area suddenly began to writhe. Even the stellar energy of the black star was being ravenously devoured as everything in the area began to swirl around Buddha Jueming. Enormous amounts of energy were being frantically pulled towards him, forming an enormous swirling maelstrom of primordial chaos! As for Buddha Jueming, every single speck of divine power in his body began to transform and be remade anew.
A short while later, the vortex of primordial chaos dissipated. Everything became calm again, and the black star once more regained its normal aura of grandeur.
A hint of sadness could be seen in the eyes of Buddha Jueming.
“I’ve become an Elder God.”
“A thousand years from now, I must leave the Three Realms.” Buddha Jueming was filled with a deep reluctance to part with the Three Realms. He had started as a weak mortal and had slowly risen to power here. He had made miracles happen in Undermoon Lake and as a result had been awarded the [Solitary World God]. After so many years of training in it, he had long ago found the necessary spark of insight within his divine body. He was able to break through from being a True God to being an Elder God whenever he chose.
However, he truly didn’t wish to leave. He had a gentle disposition and was innately suited for the Buddhist Sangha. He had no great desires or ambitions; he was quite satisfied with living a peaceful life in the Three Realms.
However, now that the Endwar was arriving, he had to stand up and step forward.
Only by becoming an Elder God would he be strong enough to have an impact on the outcome of the war. However…becoming an Elder God meant he would have to leave the Three Realms within a thousand years. If he did not, his lifeblood oath would rebound against him and destroy his soul.
“To be able to do battle alongside Master and my old friends against a common enemy…it is enough that I can do this before leaving.” Buddha Jueming sat down on his lotus flower, once more disappearing.
No one knew of his breakthrough in the endless primordial chaos, and he quietly slipped back into his own hall.
The only people present in his hall were those two Buddhist novitiates. He was a low-key figure who never left his palace. Much like Suiren, he used a technique which withdrew and suppressed his aura. Even if someone came to visit him, they probably wouldn’t be able to tell that he had changed. Given how tense the situation was with the Endwar ready to erupt at any moment, no one would come pay a visit, especially since Buddha Jueming was so low-key and spent all of his time in solitary meditation after becoming a True God.
No one in the Three Realms knew that a new Elder God had just been born.