Karma was truly a wondrous, mysterious thing.
As Ji Ning flew towards the warship, he couldn’t help but sigh. When he had first entered the Ruins, Elder God Skysouth had relied on his army of slaves to attack Ning and attempt to seize Ning’s treasures. In truth, Ning didn’t hold much of a grudge. Anyone who entered the world of cultivation had to abide by its many unspoken rules, and combat was extremely common within the Ruins. If Ning truly had been killed, he would’ve only blamed himself for being too weak.
Back then, he had elected to flee.
After roaming about the Hundred Streams of the Windsource, he had ended up acquiring multiple Dao weapons and had mastered the Nine Chaos Seals, materializing the azureflower seal and growing dramatically more powerful. And now, as soon as he exited the Hundred Streams, he had run into Elder God Skysouth once more. If there was no enmity whatsoever between the two, Ning probably would’ve just left; that was the type of person he was. But now that there was a bit of bad blood…Ning didn’t hesitate at all in choosing to chase after him.
This, too, was karma!
“Destiny and karma truly do work in unfathomable ways.” Ning could sense the unfathomably distant and vast essence-river of destiny ebbing and surging.
He was now able to see the fate of mortals with but a single glance, discerning their future joys and sorrows.
Truly formidable cultivators, however…
Ning found it difficult to see their destinies.
Although destiny was often viewed as being abstruse, it actually operated on simple principles. Destiny was formed by the entangling of countless different strings of karma. For example, Ji Ning held a grudge against Old Man Yuan, which was why Ji Ning had ended up joining Fogstone and being stationed here on the Windsource Chaosworld! But of course, the secret workings of destiny were trillions of times more complicated than the simple ‘cause and effect’ of karma.
Ning understood another principle as well. The past was difficult to change, but the future was not.
For example, Ning might be able to see the destined life path of a mortal, but because the future had yet to actually happen, for that mortal’s destiny to be changed wouldn’t be too hard. For example, if a powerful cultivator suddenly chose to intervene in that mortal’s life, that mortal’s destiny would easily be changed.
The Book of Life and Death was a good example. It set down the destined fates of mortals, but if that mortal gained great karmic merit, his life could be completely changed.
In fact, Ning had the sneaking suspicion that some unfathomably powerful figures might be capable of reversing things that had already occurred in the past! For example…perhaps a cultivator whose truesoul was destroyed could be revived.
This was Ning’s greatest hope and goal as he continued on his path of cultivation. His greatest desire was to see his beloved wife be brought back to life.
Ning continued to chase after the warship, moving closer and closer to it, but his mind began to wander as he began to ponder on the workings of karma and destiny. In truth, he didn’t view Elder God Skysouth as much of an opponent.
A hundred Elder Gods in an Elder God Formation were very formidable and were capable of holding off even a World God for a period of time, but Ning didn’t intend to give Elder God Skysouth the chance to act as he pleased.
The warship continued to slowly fly through the mountains. Elder God Skysouth was seated on at the front of the ship, lazily watching the skies before him. Next to him was a table covered with wine and delicacies, along with two female servants who were attending to him. Behind him were six Elder Gods and Ancestral Immortals who were maintaining a watchful vigilance.
In front of the warship, a blazing figure was fleeing at high speed. The area around this fiery-robed woman was filled with countless daggers of flame.
“Flamefairy.” Elder God Skysouth chortled. “You’ve been fleeing for quite some time now. I imagine you should understand that you won’t be able to escape me. If I wanted to, I could’ve caught you long ago. However, I chose not to. I can’t bear to see such an unmatchably beautiful Immortal maiden like yourself die within a place like this.”
“All I want you to do is be one of my retainers. Why must you be so stubborn?” Elder God Skysouth drained all the wine from his winecup. The female servant next to him smiled flirtatiously and quickly helped him fill it once more.
“Just a retainer?” The fleeing Su Youji laughed coldly.
“You look ravishing when you are angry, Flamefairy. Your [Libertine Dream] technique truly is alluring.” Elder God Skysouth couldn’t help but sigh in praise. “I’m not asking that much. All you need to do is serve me as a retainer while also being my pleasure-companion. What’s the point of cultivation? It is to be able to travel as far as we can on our paths with our hearts filled with pleasure. But for someone like me…I no longer have any hopes with regards to cultivation. All I can seek is excitement and pleasure, yes?”
“I train in the [Libertine Dream]. I cannot possibly become your pleasure-companion,” Su Youji sent mentally.
The [Libertine Dream] technique did not permit the user to lose her virginity.
This was a technique which Su Youji had devised for herself after she saw fragments of an ancient technique. Su Youji had improved with dramatic speed after developing this technique. She had been cultivating for less than a million years but had long ago become comparable to a supreme Elder God or Ancestral Immortal. However, because she was a Ki Refiner, she was a bit weaker than Fiendgod Body Refiners in close combat.
“The forbidden fruits taste the sweetest.” Elder God Skysouth let out a soft sigh, his voice echoing by Su Youji’s ears. “Someone like me can buy and sell even female Ancestral Immortals as chattel, but one as mesmerizing as you is almost impossible to find. I urge you to stop running. If you keep running around like this, you might wind up activating a dangerous formation of some sort.”
Elder God Skysouth was quite relaxed.
As soon as he had seen Flamefairy Su Youji, he had immediately desired to possess her and had tried to force her to become his retainer. She knew that she wasn’t a match for him and so had been willing to bow her head, but…the lifeblood oath which Elder God Skysouth had wanted her to swear had been simply too onerous. Although she was a ‘retainer’ in name, in reality she would be nothing more than a toy for him to enjoy. The reason why she was known as the Flamefairy was because she had an explosive, fiery temper. There was no way she would accept such terms.
She had trained for less than a million years. Even though she was just a Ki Refiner, she was still comparable to supreme Elder Gods and Ancestral Immortals. She had an extremely high level of insight into the Dao and could quite possibly reach the World-level of power. How could someone like her possibly be willing to become someone else’s plaything?
But Elder God Skysouth was quite patient. He was willing to slowly chase after her.
He had once tried to send his servants to chase after her, but she had furiously fled at maximum speed. Skysouth had immediately recalled his servants. Such a high-speed chase could easily result in the activation of some hidden formation, and he wasn’t willing to see the Flamefairy die like this.
And so, he had slowly chased after her.
With the Flamefairy fleeing at a fairly low speed, he wouldn’t be in much danger.
In addition, since she was running in front of him while he was slowly chasing from behind, she was essentially serving as a scout for him that was helping him test and see if the area up ahead was safe or not. Where else could he possibly find a free scout like her? He needed time to tame the Flamefairy’s unruly spirit anyhow.
To tame such a peerlessly beautiful Immortal woman was no easy feat. Time would be needed…but once he succeeded…
Just the thought of it made him quiver.
“Who is there?!” Elder God Skysouth suddenly put away his warship and turned to look behind himself.
The two female servants next to him were badly frightened, but the six Elder Gods and Ancestral Immortals simply looked backwards with vigilance.
Behind them was a white-robed youth who was flying straight towards them, surrounded by countless golden beads that were swirling around him.
“Careful, Master.” The six were shocked, as they all recognized Ji Ning. The two most powerful of them had used treasures to attack Ning faster than the speed of light, but Ning had broken through their attacks with one blow and then easily escaped.
“The Sentinel?” Elder God Skysouth smirked.
Whooooooosh! A large group of Elder Gods immediately appeared around him. These were the hundred Elder Gods which Skysouth carried with him at all times inside an estate-treasure. This represented the greatest force he could muster. When traveling through the Ruins, he often put on a show of being weak. When he actually got close to other Elder Gods and Ancestral Immortals, he would suddenly summon all of his subordinates.
“Kill him! Let’s see if he dares to flee through this region at high speed like before!” Elder God Skysouth pointed straight towards Ning.
He was no fool. Last time, when the two had fought each other, Skysouth had quickly realized that this ‘Sentinel’ was a formidable expert who had the power of a truly transcendent Elder God in power. Thus, this time he immediately ordered all hundred of his Elder Gods to attack! Last time, Ning had been able to escape because they were in the swamps; this time, they were in a much more dangerous region. Logically speaking, he wouldn’t dare to flee at such high speed through it.
The hundred Elder Gods all immediately charged towards Ning.
“Him?” The fleeing Flamefairy, Su Youji, was glancing backwards as well. She saw that Elder God Skysouth had come to a halt and had instead turned his attention towards a white-robed youth.
She recognized that youth.
Over a year ago, this youth had flown past her. However, the two had only exchanged glances, not words.
“He’s in danger.” In her heart, Su Youji was definitely cheering for Ji Ning. She was filled with anger and hatred towards Elder God Skysouth.
Faced with a hundred attacking Elder Gods, Ning drew a thin, slender sword. This was the flexible Dao sword he had acquired earlier. It could be used as either a soft weapon or a hard weapon, and its slenderness made it very suitable for intricate, unpredictable sword-arts.
Not only did Ning not flee, he instead charged straight towards the hundred.
“He isn’t fleeing?”
“He’s courting death.”
The hundred Elder Gods were filled with confidence. They didn’t fear anyone below the World-level of power in a frontal clash. Alright, perhaps they might fear one of those legendary monsters who could defeat World-level experts despite being mere Elder Gods…but what were the chances of running into such a figure?
“Kill!” “Die!” Saber-light and axe-light flashed through the air, howling towards Ning.
Ning suddenly dramatically sped up, instantly surpassing the speed of light as he shot out in a solitary arc, moving past all hundred Elder Gods. The Elder Gods wanted to hack at him with their weapons, but none of them were able to attack faster than the speed of light. They couldn’t even touch the hem of Ning’s clothes, to say nothing of Ning himself. Ning easily moved past them.
Swoosh. Ning flew straight towards Elder God Skysouth.
“How?! Impossible!” Elder God Skysouth was truly frightened now. There were very few experts capable of moving faster than the limits of the Heavenly Daos. Generally speaking, only World Gods were capable of this! The Lord of All Fiends was one of the very few exceptions. He was so ridiculously fast that even Mother Nuwa, who had just become a World God, was unable to catch up to him.
“Stop him!” Skysouth hurriedly directed his six bodyguards to defend him.
“Quick, all of you come back!” He hurriedly ordered the rest of the hundred Elder Gods to return as well.
Whoosh. Ning had arrived.
The six bodyguards all readied their various weapons and treasures, using them to attack Ning.
“Gotta hold. Gotta hold! If I can hold for just a few moments, my Elder God Formation will make it back here.” Elder God Skysouth hurriedly manifested a three-headed, six-armed form as well. Each of his six arms wielded a long hook, and he sought to use them to defend and buy himself some time.
But alas, the white-robed youth had already arrived.
The attacks of the six bodyguards all missed. They did their best but were unable to even so much as touch Ning.
Slash! A sword suddenly stabbed at Elder God Skysouth’s throat. Because he wore a protective suit of armor, the sword wasn’t able to pierce through his throat, but…the powerful force contained within Ning’s sword was powerful enough to cause Skysouth’s body to be instantly disintegrated.
“You-…” Skysouth stared in disbelief at the white-robed Ning. How could this be? Even during their previous battle, this Sentinel had been limited to the speed of light. His sword-arts weren’t as fast as they were now either! Why was he so terrifyingly strong this time?
But of course, he had no idea that the azureflower mist energy in Ning’s body had made him both stronger and faster, allowing him to easily overpower the limits of the Heavenly Daos with his sword through raw strength. Ning’s sword-arts were profound to begin with, and this time they were significantly faster than before.
Skysouth’s body completely disintegrated. How could someone like him possibly endure a head-on sword-strike by a World-level expert?
His six bodyguards, his two female servants, his hundred Elder God slaves…their eyes instantly turned dim and all signs of life vanished from their bodies. They were slaves. Long ago, their lives had become inextricably linked to the life of their master! This was a way of ensuring that slaves would truly work hard to protect their masters. If their master died, they would not be able to escape death.
“To tell you the truth, you actually had a chance at staying alive.” Ning began glancing through the treasures which Elder God Skysouth had left behind. “If you had kept those hundred Elder Gods around you at all times, I wouldn’t have been able to get you.”
World-level experts were able to move faster than the limits of the Heavenly Daos. How, then, would a hundred Elder Gods in a formation be able to fight back against such a foe? All other methods were suicidal; the only method was to defeat motion with stillness.
If Elder God Skysouth had ordered the hundred Elder Gods to stay around him and protect him at all times, there was no way Ning would’ve been able to breach such a turtle-shell defense. However, Skysouth had been so confident in his ability to defeat anyone aside from a World-level figure that he had ordered all hundred Elder Gods to attack instead. This rendered his own defenses vulnerable enough that any World-level expert would be capable of effortlessly dodging past the Elder God formation to slay him!
Skysouth couldn’t really be blamed. How could he have ever imagined that Ji Ning was this strong?
“B-but…” The distant Su Youji was completely dazed by what she saw. “He flies faster than the limits of the Heavenly Daos, his sword-arts are faster than the speed of light, and his blows are so powerful as to destroy an Elder God’s armor-protected body. Seven Elder Gods and Ancestral Immortals fought against him, but they weren’t even able to touch his sword…what the hell level is this guy at?!”