“Why are there so many people here?” Seeing the jostling crowd before them, both Chen Feng and Lu Ta frowned.
The two of them had arrived at the foot of Extreme Celestial Mountain. Two large and lofty mountains stood before them, the Jade Gate Summit and Welcoming Guests Summit. That was the way to enter Extreme Celestial Mountain and also the gateway into Extreme Celestial Sect.
The two mountains were roughly of the same shape, round and tall, rising high into the sky. Ancient trees filled the surface of the mountain and a powerful aura of primal simplicity radiated from the mountains. The aura gave off the impression that the two mountains had existed since the beginning of life.
“I hear that these two mountains did not originally exist. They were constructed by great magic wielders from Extreme Celestial Sect,” one of the cultivators there suddenly spoke out.
There was a large plaza at the foot of the mountain, made from thick and firm stones. Additionally, it had been reinforced with magic by experts. Ordinary flying swords could only leave a shallow mark on its surface. Most importantly, the plaza could accommodate hundreds of thousands of people.
The plaza was surrounded by tall and majestic buildings. The buildings were all constructed using special steels and stones. The surface of the buildings was engraved with countless defensive magic arrays. One glance was sufficient to tell them that they were nigh unbreakable.
“Braggart. These two mountains are so massive. How can they be made through human hands?” a nearby fellow said in disbelief.
“A true wielder of great magics can move mountains and fill up the ocean with just a wave of his or her hand. What is so surprising about creating two mountains? You fellows are simply too inexperienced. Besides, I hear that Extreme Celestial Sect has Immortal Humans.”
“I have heard of the rumours as well. It is said that every one of the Ten Great Immortal Dao Sects of our Northern Plains is under the guardianship of Immortal Humans. I hope that I can be noticed by Extreme Celestial Sect this time and become a disciple.”
“Hey, hey. My hope is more towards having an expert from Extreme Celestial Sect looking favourably upon me and accepting me as a disciple. That way, I will have a chance of cultivating up to the immortal stage in the future.”
“Ha ha ha ha, you are dreaming. You should just worry about how to become an outer disciple.”
After hearing the person’s words, everyone around laughed out.
“I made a rough calculation earlier. There is a total of 30,000 people in this plaza,” Lu Ta suddenly said.
“30,000 people.” Chen Feng sucked in a breath of cold air.
It was said that Extreme Celestial Sect would recruit a high number of disciples every year. If so many cultivators were accepted every time, the accumulated number throughout the tens of thousands of years would result in an unimaginable number of cultivators within the sect.
Still, Chen Feng was certain that not all 30,000 cultivators would be recruited by Extreme Celestial Sect. Many of them would have come here for nothing.
Chen Feng regarded those cultivators. Almost all of them were youngster at around 20 years of age. Those at around 15 to 16 years old number up to several thousands. Those that were over 30 years old were small in numbers. At this age, they will need to have a sufficient level of cultivation, otherwise their chances of getting accepted by Extreme Celestial Sect were terribly small.
These people are all young talents from a radius of tens of thousands of li. As expected from a true immortal dao sect. Chen Feng felt slightly shocked.
During the next three days, more young cultivators kept coming from all over. When the day of recruitment finally arrived, the number of cultivators in the plaza had gone above 40,000. Seeing that left both Chen Feng and Lu Ta speechless.
Finally, someone from Extreme Celestial Sect appeared.
A rainbow shot out from in between the two mountains. The end of the rainbow fell right upon the circular platform in the middle of the plaza. When the rainbow faded away, everyone there could see three cultivators standing upon the circular platform.
Three very powerful cultivators.
“Impressive. They are neither using flying swords nor borrowing the power of their bodies’ insight acupoints to fly. Yet, they can attain this level of speed. What kind of secret technique is that?” uttered Chen Feng, who felt slightly shocked.
“Humph, it is just an ordinary spirit walking technique,” Tower said coolly.
“Spirit walking technique?” Chen Feng grew curious.
“There are spirit walking techniques recorded within the Longevity Scripture. When you have reached the Sky Human stage, you will be able to practice them,” Tower said with a leisurely tone.
“When you put it that way, these three people’s cultivation bases?” Chen Feng asked, looking at the three cultivators on the platform.
“They all have five Lightning Tribulations under their belts. Be careful. We are incapable of handling cultivators at this level,” Tower said.
Five Lightning Tribulations, level 5 Sky Human stage. They are so much stronger than me. Chen Feng’s heart grew tense.
All three of the cultivators on the circular platform were middle-aged. Their faces upright while exuding an air of grandeur. Their eyes shone like that of the divine as their gaze slowly swept across the 40,000 cultivators present. A daunting atmosphere pressed down upon the cultivators and the place immediately fell silent. Some of the cultivators close to the platform felt themselves suffocating. It felt as though the three cultivators’ gazes were capable of looking right through them.
So powerful! Just their gazes alone can seemingly pierce right through the soul. The moment their gazes met, Chen Feng felt a piercing sensation from the gaze and had to quickly shut his eyes.
After one joss stick’s worth of time, the three middle-aged cultivators slowly retracted their gazes. They then waved their hands and sky-encompassing motes of light enveloped the cultivators in the plaza.
“What is this?” Chen Feng was slightly shocked. Looking around, he saw that gold-coloured symbols had appeared on some of the cultivators on the plaza.
“Those with the gold-coloured symbols, hurry up and leave. You fellows have been rejected,” the middle-aged cultivator in the centre said with a cold and low-pitched tone. However, his words spread throughout the entire plaza.
Hearing those words, the entire plaza broke into an uproar and some began shouting in dissatisfaction.
“Rejecting us just like this? Are you messing with us?”
“That is right. It was just a glance. This is not fair.”
“I protest! This is not fair.”
Seeing that, one of the middle-aged cultivators snorted and spread open his five fingers. A clumped ball of lightning bolts flashed out while releasing crackling sounds. Next, it transformed into bolts of lightning, which shot forward.
Argh! Argh! Argh! Argh!
The cultivators who were shouting loudly fell, their bodies convulsing on the ground. Chen Feng noticed one of the cultivators, who were not too far from him, becoming completely charred from the lightning bolt attack. The cultivator had nearly become a humanoid charcoal.
The plaza fell silent once more. One by one, those with gold-coloured symbols on them began leaving the plaza. Most of them revealed regretful looks and they shook their heads as they left.
All of them were rejected in the first stage.
A total of 5,000 cultivators were rejected. Seeing the sharp decline in the number of cultivators, Chen Feng suddenly felt slightly anxious.
This selection process is quite fast, Chen Feng thought.
“Hey, cultivators with five Lightning Tribulations under their belt can clearly find out everything about the cultivators in the plaza just by spreading out their divine senses. What is so surprising about it?” Tower said in a disdainful tone.
“What about the Longevity Tower in my body?” Chen Feng grew slightly concerned.
“With their abilities? Wait until they have cultivated up to the Human Immortal stage before you worry,” Tower replied smugly.
“Phew! We’ve passed the first stage. That made me feel nervous just now,” said Lu Ta, who was beside Chen Feng, a smile on his face.
“This is just the beginning.” Chen Feng shook his head.
Next, one of the middle-aged cultivators waved his hand again and a large stretch of golden light shone upon the plaza.
Are more people going to be rejected? Chen Feng considered.
“Those with symbols on your body, come out,” the middle-aged cultivator said softly.
This time, a total of 2,000 cultivators stepped forward. After inspecting them, Chen Feng noticed something amiss. The ones stepping forward were all around level 4 of the Concealed stage. In other words, they were the strongest amongst all the cultivators present.
“Next up, you fellows will be joining the assessment to become inner disciples.” One of the middle-aged cultivators stepped forward and led those 2,000 cultivators into the broad road in between the two mountains. It did not take them long to enter Extreme Celestial Mountain.
The three did not notice my true state? Chen Feng thought.
“Of course not. I covered it up for you. Those three don’t have what it takes. However, if they had chosen to directly search through your sea of wisdom, you would not have been able to hide it,” Tower said with an amused tone.
After that, the remaining cultivators were split into teams and sent into the surrounding buildings. The buildings there were quite good, large, sturdy, spacious and well furnished. However, there were simply too many cultivators there. Thus, they had to cram themselves in.
The room that Chen Feng and Lu Ta entered had a total of over 20 cultivators. Although it was slightly chaotic, those cultivators had not come here to play. They were here for the assessment. Thus, they did not say anything. All of them quietly cultivated themselves inside. Either that, or chat with one another in hushed tones. A considerable number of them even walked out of the room to check out the scenery.
“I wonder what kind of assessment will come next?” Lu Ta could not stop himself from asking.
“What other assessment can there be? It will surely be a one-on-one fight to determine who gets rejected.” Before Chen Feng could say anything, the cultivator beside them interrupted.
“Your information is not accurate. I hear that next up is the wooden puppets. Only in the final stage will there be one-on-one fights.”
Those in the same room as Chen Feng and Lu Ta were all youngsters, no more than 20 years of age. The strongest amongst them was only at level 2 of the Concealed stage. He was simply not a threat in Chen Feng’s eyes.
“Wooden puppets? What is that?” Chen Feng asked in a hushed tone.
“It is a type of combat puppet that Extreme Celestial Sect created. Its body is impervious to blade and swords and incomparably tough. They can block off attacks from flying swords and are fast. They are specifically used to test people like us,” an 18-year-old cultivator said with a smile.
“That makes sense. Extreme Celestial Sect would not dispatch too much manpower to assess our combat powers.” Chen Feng nodded his head in understanding.
After staying there for three days, it was finally their turn.
It was a large palace-like building with tens of guards keeping watch outside the door. All of them were Extreme Celestial Sect’s inner disciples. Identical magic robes and identical magic swords, their heads were held high and their chests were puffed out. A look of haughtiness could be seen coming out from their eyes.
“They don’t look too strong,” Lu Ta whispered.
“What did you say?” Lu Ta’s words were overheard by them and a youngster immediately strode over.
“What?” Chen Feng stepped forward and said coolly. A powerful aura flowed out from his body.
The youngster was stunned. Then, he looked at the magic robes that Chen Feng and Lu Ta were wearing. His eyes glinted.
“Grade 5 magic robes!” The youngster was somewhat shocked.
“All right. It is time for you fellows to enter.” A cultivator stepped out from the building and called out.
“Humph! Rookies shouldn’t be too arrogant. It will not end well for you.” The youngster regarded Chen Feng and Lu Ta for a moment before leaving them.
“Hey, just a cultivator at level 4 of the Concealed stage. If we really have to duke it out, there is no telling who wins and who loses.” Lu Ta sneered.
It was the truth. The grade 5 magic robe that Lu Ta was wearing alone could block off the youngster’s attacks.