The Sacred City of Silksnow was an extremely beautiful place.
“How beautiful.” Two Daolords were flying side-by-side, staring at Silksnow City from afar. The entire Sacred City was composed of countless palaces and estates that were connected to each other, each built atop a cloud. It truly was surpassingly beautiful. In addition, Silksnow City was perpetually covered by countless drifting snowflakes, giving it a pristine and holy appearance.
“Big brother Ironshow, didn’t you say that Silksnow City is one of the eight Sacred Cities and is governed by the bloodthirsty Silksnow Fiend Palace? The disciples of Silksnow Fiend Palace are all incredibly evil and demonic in nature. All of them are tremendous sinners… is it really possible that these demons are in charge of this beautiful Sacred City?” the young violet-robed Daolord transmitted mentally.
“Haha, nothing can be judged by appearances!” The muscular and heavily armored Daolord Ironshow laughed as he responded mentally, “Silksnow Fiend Palace is indeed an extremely evil sect, but this is still their home, one of the eight Sacred Cities of the Dao Alliance. They naturally have to take good care of it! Look at the snow. It looks beautiful as it drifts through the air, right? But amongst cultivators, there is a legend that every single one of the snowflakes drifting through Silksnow City was formed from the blood of countless murdered victims…”
The violet-robed youth glanced at the beautiful snow drifting through the skies. When he thought of how they were formed by endless amounts of blood, his face couldn’t help but pale slightly.
“Violetflame, you are a new Daolord. This is your first visit to a Sacred City.” Daolord Ironshow continued to fly forwards while pointing from afar: “I’ll explain some of the rules of the Sacred City to you. Look at those palaces over there. Whenever you are within an area covered by those barriers, all violence and combat is forbidden no matter how strong you are. If you do attack someone, that means you are challenging the authority of the Dao Alliance… and challenging the authority of Silksnow Fiend Palace! As the rulers of this Sacred City, they’ll send a large number of major powers to slay any who violate the laws.”
The violet-robed youth hurriedly nodded upon hearing this.
“Thus… the Sacred Cities are quite safe. Many Daolords have set up residence in them and engage in secluded meditation, because not even Eternal Emperors would dare to break the rules,” Daolord Ironshow said.
“Got it.” The youth nodded again. Break the rules? Challenge Silksnow Fiend Palace? Provoke the Dao alliance? How would a new Daolord like himself even dare to imagine such a thing?
Outside of the barriers surrounding the palaces, everything is fair game,” Daolord Ironshow said. “That’s why we have to be careful.”
“I’ll just keep following you, big brother Ironshow,” the violet-robed Daolord said. He then asked curiously, “Have there ever been any major powers who have started a fight within a Sacred City and broken its rules?”
“The three legendary Hegemons would definitely dare to do such a thing,” Daolord Ironshow said, “And the Dao Alliance does have internal struggles! The Dao Alliance is simply far too vast, which is why there is quite a bit of combat amongst its most powerful member organizations. Archon Silksnow is legendary for how many he has massacred and slaughtered, and a large number of Emperors belonging to the Dao Alliance have died by his hand. It was slaughter and murder which gave him his current position and the right to rule over this Sacred City. He even renamed it ‘Silksnow City’ after himself!”
The eight Sacred Cities all had extremely long histories. Every so often, their rulers would change. For example, prior to Archon Silksnow succeeding in his Daomerge, this city had been ruled by a different organization and had a different name. Archon Silksnow’s rise to power resulted in many great sinners following him, giving him a powerful organization of his own. As a result, he was able to take control over this Sacred City.
“Big brother Ironshow, look! Quick!” The violet-robed youth’s face turned pale as he pointed off into the distance. Puzzled, Daolord Ironshow followed his gaze.
They watched from afar as an inky-black tear in space appeared. A white-robed youth bearing a black sheath on his back emerged from the spatial tear. The youth stared off into the distance, scanning the area with his gaze. As he did so, a surge of terrifying power and presence descended upon the region. It was an enormous heartworld projection, and it instantly crashed down upon the entire Sacred City of Silksnow.
“B-but…” The violet-robed youth and Daolord Ironshow both turned ashen. When they looked at the heartworld projection around them, they felt a sense of terror that came from the innermost depths of their souls.
The power of the heartworld projection had yet to be truly unleashed, but even so it was enough to inspire terror in them. If it was unleashed… they knew that they would be instantly annihilated.
Their senses were correct! Given how strong Ji Ning’s heartworld projection had become, even Eternal Emperors would turn pale before its might, to say nothing of Daolords.
“Who dares to suppress the Sacred City!?”
“Who dares to challenge us, the Silksnow Fiend Palace?!” The Fiend Palace was located in one particular corner of Silksnow City, and auras of tremendous power instantly shot into the skies as various figures began to fly out. The leader was Archon Silksnow’s avatar! Behind him were the other Emperors. Some of the Emperors were here in person, some had their avatars present. In total, an awe-inspiring process of over twenty Emperors had gathered together. This was a terrifying array.
“Silksnow!” the white-robed youth called out icily, his voice shaking the heavens and the earth.
“What’s going on?”
“What is this?”
“Why have so many Emperors appeared?” The many Daolords who were in secluded meditation within their personal estate all emerged, as did the various attendants, Daolords, and weaker World-level cultivators who were within some of the public palaces. They all raised their heads, stunned and curious, to see what was happening afar. Most likely, this was something which they would never see again.
A white-robed youth was facing off against twenty-plus Eternal Emperors led by Archon Silksnow. The two sides gazed at each other from afar.
“Big brother Ironshow, d-didn’t you just say… that this place is very safe? That only the thre Hegemons and the most elite organizations within the Dao Alliance would dare to challenge Silksnow Fiend Palace?” The violet-robed youth was rather dazed.
“There are very few who dare challenge them… but that doesn’t mean there are none.” Daolord Ironshow was rather shocked as well. He hurriedly pulled his brother away and hid within one of the nearby palaces that was within the area protected by the barriers. “Let’s hide for now. We’ll be finished if we get caught up in a battle between major powers like them.”
“Right, right.” The violet-robed youth nodded repeatedly, but a look of excitement was in his eyes.
“Hey… isn’t that white-robed youth Daolord Darknorth?” A voice rang out from nearby. It was one of the other watching Daolords.
“Oh, right!” Daolord Ironshow was stunned and puzzled as he stared from afar. “He looks identical to the figure I saw in the intelligence report I purchased. That white-robed youth is Daolord Darknorth! How is it that he dares to challenge the Silksnow Fiend Palace? No matter how powerful a Daolord is, he’s not even close to being a match for the Archons of the Sacred Cities. T-this makes no sense at all.”
“Big brother Ironshow, is that guy over there really Daolord Darknorth?” the violet-robed youth asked curiously.
“From his appearance, he should be… but it doesn’t make sense for Daolord Darknorth to challenge the entire Silksnow Fiend Palace.” Daolord Ironshow was puzzled. “I really can’t be sure if that is actually Daolord Darknorth at all.” But right at that moment…
“Darknorth, you really are suicidal.” The leader of that distant group of Eternal Emperors, Archon Silksnow, spoke out in a booming voice that echoed in the world. All of the countless puzzled cultivators within Silksnow City instantly realized that the white-robed youth was in fact the legendary ‘Daolord Darknorth’.
“He’s incredible! A Daolord actually dares to challenge all of Silksnow Fiend Palace in such a dominating manner? They are one of the eight organizations which rule over the Sacred Cities!”
“He’s absolutely incredible.”
“What a bold man! Even if he ends up being defeated, I’ll still feel nothing but admiration for him.” Countless cultivators sighed in shock and awe, and many of them naturally sided with Ning. This was because no matter how much they trained, for them to become Eternal Emperors was an almost hopelessly impossible task. They would at most become Daolords of the fourth Step… and so they felt absolutely exhilarated that a Daolord like them would dare to challenge Silksnow Fiend Palace. Sheer pleasure coursed through their veins at the very thought.
Yes, we Daolords might be weak! But the strongest of us, the strongest Daolords, still dare to challenge even one of the eight rulers of the Sacred Cities!
The countless watching cultivators all mentally supported Ning. However… they all believed that Daolord Darknorth had no chance to actually win. Even his chances to survive this would be extremely slim.
Ning had travelled here at maximum speed. Given his high level of insight into the Dao, he was able to tear through even greater distances through spacetime. Finally, he reached the Sacred City of Silksnow… and he had immediately unleashed his heartworld projection without hesitation. He wanted to immediately make a show of strength! Instantly, an entire host of Eternal Emperors had come flying out. He counted a total of twenty-six of them! However, Ning could sense that most were merely avatars. Even the leader, Archon Silksnow, was merely an avatar.
“Silksnow,” Ning called out.
In front of the awesome, distant group of Eternal Emperors standing in midair was their leader, Archon Silksnow. Silksnow, however, was in a rather dazed state of disbelief. He couldn’t believe that Ning had come to his headquarters to attack him. Was the man suicidal? Moments later, the Archon let out a laugh: “Darknorth, you really are suicidal.”
“If you think you can kill me, come and try.” Ning swept his gaze across the group of Eternal Emperors, each of them flaring out their auras mightily. Ning smiled. “Do you plan to all come at once? That’s fine as well. It’ll be fun for me to beat all twenty-six of you Emperors at once.”