The four great sects had dominated the human world for a very long time.
At the very beginning, they had been the main forces that had fought and driven the outsiders and Ancientspirits from this heaven and earth.
For this reason, they had a sense of superiority when facing other human forces.
However, not everyone was awed by their power and authority.
Zhao Shanling had refused the Void Spirit Society’s recruitment offer, and remained an independent cultivator.
Xie Qian from the Domain of Vast Darkness, who had recently broken through into the late Saint domain, had also refused Sikong Cuo and He Lianxiong’s offers using Nie Tian as an excuse.
Patriarch Pure Heaven was also such a rebel.
There were always people who refused to bow their heads to the four great sects, and those people were usually outstanding in some way.
After hearing Patriarch Pure Heaven’s words, both Nie Tian and Pei Qiqi fell silent.
After serious consideration, they both felt that the four great sects were a bit too domineering.
As for what Patriarch Pure Heaven had said, was it fair that the Ancient Fragmentary Star Palace merely said the words, and the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries belonged to Nie Tian now?
Becoming increasingly exasperated, Patriarch Pure Heaven let out a cold snort. “The Pure Heaven Sect will remain independent! You’re a Son of the Stars, so what? I can’t acknowledge allegiance to someone who’s only at the Soul realm. I simply can’t!”
The Beast-controlling Sect, the Divine Flame Sect, and the other sects from the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries had all joined the expedition to the three Demon realms, and gained a large number of rare spiritual materials and herbs.
As a fellow sect from the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries, the Pure Heaven Sect had naturally received word of this.
They knew that all of the other sects had returned with abundant loot, but they had not been entitled to a share.
However, when the Demons had launched a retaliatory invasion, their sect had become the Demons’ first victim!
Patriarch Pure Heaven found this very hard to swallow.
If he had been at the late Saint domain or the God domain, he might have declared war against Nie Tian already.
However, he didn’t have such power yet, and Nie Tian had middle Saint domain experts like Jing Feiyang by his side.
He was already furious after swallowing this bitter pill. Of course he wouldn’t change his attitude just because Nie Tian and the other experts had come to his aid.
Nie Tian pondered for a while, then said, “I don’t want to force anything on you. If I did, your sect would have been eliminated from the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries already.”
Patriarch Pure Heaven understood that he was capable of such a thing, and thus kept silent.
Nie Tian waved his hands and said, “Forget it. If you want to remain independent, so be it. I’m only here to deal with the Demons. Right now, I still don’t know how many Demons have entered the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries. It’s possible that you and your sect will have to face more attacks from the Demons. Good luck.”
Finishing collecting the discarnate souls of the dead Demons, the Spirit Pearl returned to Nie Tian.
Part of the reason why Nie Tian and Pei Qiqi hadn’t joined the pursuit of the Demons was because they didn’t think that their efforts were needed in such an operation.
Another reason was because Nie Tian had hoped to gain useful information from the Demon discarnate souls he would have gathered.
Now that the Spirit Pearl had returned, he ended his conversation with Patriarch Pure Heaven, but communicated with the Spirit Pearl on a soul level.
One of the Spirit Pearl’s wondrous uses was stripping memories from the discarnate souls it captured.
Through the Spirit Pearl’s analysis, pieces of broken memories flowed into Nie Tian’s mind.
Nie Tian’s face gradually grew grim.
Instead of leaving right away, Patriarch Pure Heaven stayed and fixed the Spirit Pearl with a curious gaze, as if he wanted to see what Nie Tian was doing and why.
Hazlitt and Feimos were the only Demon grand patriarchs he had seen, so he also wondered how many Demons had entered the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries.
Nie Tian took a deep breath and turned to Pei Qiqi. “This invasion is led by Cardy, the Blood Warden, who’s at the peak of the ninth grade. Other than him, there’s also Feimos, Hazlitt, and four other Demon grand patriarchs. However, according to the fragmentary memories I got from the dead eighth grade Demons, they only took orders from Hazlitt and Feimos, so they didn’t know where Cardy and the other four grand patriarchs were.
“Perhaps only Hazlitt and Feimos know their overall plan.”
Taken aback, Pei Qiqi asked, “Cardy?! And four other grand patriarchs?! What grade are they at?”
“Two are at the middle ninth grade, the same as Hazlitt and Feimos,” Nie Tian said. “The other two are at the early ninth grade. Each of them commands a large number of eighth grade Demons from their clans.
“Upon arriving through the hidden teleportation portal, they split up and went on separate missions.”
After a moment of pondering, Pei Qiqi asked, “Do you know where that teleportation portal was transferred?”
Nie Tian shook his head. “No. All of the Demons that died here had been marched into the Realm of Pure Origin upon arriving through that teleportation portal. So they had no idea where Cardy moved the teleportation portal after they left.”
Frowning, Pei Qiqi said, “As long as the teleportation portal stands, the Demons will be able to come and go as they please. Perhaps more powerful Demons are on their way here.”
Since neither of them avoided Patriarch Pure Heaven when they talked, he heard everything they said.
Patriarch Pure Heaven looked into the heavens, where the Demons had fled from the Realm of Pure Heaven. A bitter expression filled his face as he muttered, “Seven Demon grand patriarchs including Cardy, the Blood Warden, and countless eighth grade Demons...”
Obviously, he realized that the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries would be plunged into a lasting turmoil. Even though the Pure Heaven Sect had already suffered a heavy blow, the Demons wouldn’t spare it just because he had refused to acknowledge allegiance to Nie Tian.
Zhou Shang from the Pure Heaven Sect suddenly called out from the heart of the grand spell formation. “Patriarch! Word just came that our two other main realms were also raided by the Demons!
“Not just us, but the Chu Clan and the Jian Clan’s realms that are close to ours were also attacked!”
Patriarch Pure Heaven’s face dropped.
Nie Tian’s expression also flickered slightly.
He had realized that the Pure Heaven Sect couldn’t be the Demons’ only target from the moment he had learned that Hazlitt and Feimos weren’t the only Demon grand patriarchs that had entered the Domain of Heaven’s Boundaries.
Although he didn’t care very much about the Pure Heaven Sect, the Chu Clan and the Jian Clan were his subordinate clans. It was his duty to protect them.
Furthermore, since neither of their clanmasters had entered the Saint domain, any Demon grand patriarch would have a great edge in battle against them.
Nie Tian shot a quick glance at Patriarch Pure Heaven and said, “The Demons may come back. You’ll have to rely on yourselves.”
Then, he turned to Pei Qiqi. “Let’s go tell the others to stop pursuing Hazlitt and Feimos. We need to drive the Demons out of the Chu Clan and Jian Clan’s realms first.
“Sure.” Pei Qiqi immediately split open a spatial rift.
As Zhou Shang flew over, Nie Tian and Pei Qiqi had already vanished into the slowly-healing spatial rift.
“Patriarch!” Zhou Shang said, appearing to be on the verge of tears, “This Demon invasion has put us even farther behind the Beast-controlling Sect and the Divine Flame Sect... We lost five Void domain elders in the defensive battles over our three main realms. Considering that Zhongli Jian and Dong Qisong have also entered the Saint domain, if things don’t change, I’m afraid our future days will be more and more difficult.”
Patriarch Pure Heaven shot him a cold, sideways glance, and said, “Shut it! I know what you want to say. I’ll never submit to Nie Tian unless he can best me in battle!”
With these words, he flew back into the grand spell formation and went to the attacked realms via the teleportation portal in their headquarters.
After he left, Zhou Shang stood there and muttered bitterly, “We have three realms to defend, but only one of you. No matter how powerful you are, you can’t defend three places simultaneously. Nie Tian, on the other hand, has five Saint domain experts, but instead of us, he’ll only protect the Chu Clan and the Jian Clan, which are his subordinate clans.”
However, Patriarch Pure Heaven wasn’t there to hear his words.
“Why so stubborn?” Bitterness filled Zhou Shang’s heart.
Like many other elders of his sect, he also thought that they should have bent their knees to Nie Tian long ago, as the Beast-controlling Sect and the Divine Flame Sect had.
He had seen the other sects return with great fortune from the Lizardman realms, the floating continent, and the three Demon realms.
The Pure Heaven Sect hadn’t gained a single thing from those operations, yet when the Demons had invaded, they had become the first victim.
Zhou Shang couldn’t help but grumble inwardly.
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