Chapter 831: Priest

“This is the next realm after setting foot onto the connate great dao, the golden core realm of the great dao!” Arms spread wide, Lu Yun opened his mouth and shot out an arrow of white air that flew more than three hundred meters into the distance.

Golden core great dao was a completely different realm from golden core under the immortal dao. Though the dao now was unsophisticated and primitive, its golden core realm rivaled the level of void realm immortals.

This primitive dao might be crude in Lu Yun’s eyes, immensely lacking in finesse compared to the immortal dao of the future, but it was much closer to nature, to heaven, to earth. He didn’t have to put in any effort to understand the world. The creations of the world and the world itself were always by his side and a part of him.

“The dao of nature!” Enlightenment struck Lu Yun. “The primitive great dao is the great dao of nature. Everything in the world follows its course...”

Following that thought, he closed his eyes and fell into another cultivation trance. An imperceptible amount of time passed when he next opened his eyes.

“My cultivation has taken another leap forward, reaching the same heights I’d reached in the future!” Delight and surprise flashed through Lu Yun’s eyes. His cultivation was now the equivalent of empyrean immortal realm under the immortal dao. He’d recovered to his former peak!

“My replica is up in the sky!” Eyes bright, he jerked his head up at the firmament. He could sense that Xing Chen was somewhere distant above the dome, and that something was hindering his communication with his replica.

The Tome of Life and Death remained hidden in his body, which meant he still couldn’t access the death arts or deploy the Gates of the Abyss.

“Ah, right. This isn’t the time of human rule yet, so the kingdom of hell and cycle of reincarnation don’t exist. If the tome and gates do show up now, there’ll likely be serious consequences from their impact on the great dao.

“Nonetheless, I have to sacrifice Xing Chen once I find my way back. He needs to transform into the cosmos and manifest the new dao immortal realm. That’ll knock me back down to my original level of strength and I’ll have to hide in the little patch of land that is Dusk Province for a while.

“You know, I could try shooting for greater heights under this primitive great dao...” Lu Yun was in no hurry now. Though he was in the past, he’d return to the point in which he left for the future once he found his way back.

“Is it night already?” He started when he saw the bright stars in the night sky. “It feels like it’s been only the blink of an eye, but it’s already evening… The primitive great dao really isn’t to be underestimated.” 

Lu Yun rose to his feet and casually dismissed a defensive formation he’d set up. Although he didn’t have stores of immortal crystals and spirit stones, he was a formidable feng shui master who could set up layouts to create formations anytime and anywhere.

Formations and feng shui layouts were patterns between heaven and earth rather than a cultivation dao. That was why both existed and there was no issue with him creating them, whether the world was ruled by the primitive great dao or immortal dao.

“Wait, that’s not right!” Lu Yun jerked in surprise when he realized he was stepping on green shoots of grass. “Is it spring already?”

When he began his breakthrough, it’d been a morning of early winter, but now, it was suddenly a night of spring.

“This primitive great dao is crazy! Cultivators immersed in it lose all sense of time and passing of the seasons. No wonder the human race can’t prosper in this world!” Lu Yun sighed.

Humans lived in a hostile environment that required them to carefully consider where to put down every foot. Cultivators of each tribe had to protect their people. If they cultivated like Lu Yun did and spent a few months in meditation every time, their tribes would be razed to the ground during one of their sessions.

They could only dip their toes into the depths rather than fully immerse themselves in cultivation. As a result, any progress they made was moderate at best… Almost no one dared proceed any further once they were initiated in the great connate dao.

“It seems I have to create a more suitable cultivation method for humans now. The elemental breathing and body tempering methods are from the future, in which we have completely different constitutions from the human race now...”

He’d passed down his breathing and body tempering methods, but they might as well be written in the language of gods. None of the tribes could grasp anything other than the most basic ideas.

Thus, while the two methods had greatly improved the strength of the Yan tribesmen, their progress was only significant when compared to other humans.

In the cruel and terrifying great wilderness, the Yan Tribe remained cowering by the banks of the impoverished Wei River—it was only a fertile land compared to other human territories. In the greater picture of things, it was an unassuming corner of the world where great powerhouses couldn’t even be bothered to spare a glance for.

“I created the breathing and body tempering methods under the immortal dao to mitigate the weaknesses of immortals. I have to start anew with consideration to the world today.” It wasn’t difficult for Lu Yun to deduce cultivation methods as the great dao of nature was unusually transparent. He was easily able to observe the patterns of heaven and earth after reaching golden core realm.

……

“Hmm? What’s going on?”

A sudden commotion kicked up by the banks of the Wei River while the voice of the priest rose in incantation, but the undercurrent of sorrow in his tone suggested an occasion of loss.

“Is the Yan Tribe paying worship to their tribute spirit? No, their tribute spirit is kind and friendly. This isn’t the way they would go about it.” A sense of foreboding weighed heavily on Lu Yun, and he vanished into the air with a single step.

……

Shennong, the tribe priest, and various elders were clustered around the river. The priest recited an elegant ancient tribute verse in a resonant voice. Behind them knelt different members of the Yan Tribe; some recited along with the priest while others sobbed and repeatedly called out a name.

A little raft bobbed at the center of the vast Wei River, on top of which stood several girls and boys aged five or six. They looked at the diminishing panorama of their family with lost eyes, oblivious to the fate that awaited them.

“The hour is upon us,” announced the priest. “Please enjoy your tribute, River God!”

Splash splash splash!

The river agitated to life, raising tall waves that threatened to swallow the little bamboo raft.

“Bastards!” A clap of thunder exploded in the air as Lu Yun appeared above the river to scatter the waves. With a simple drag of his hand, he sent the raft back to the riverbank.

“What are you doing?!” he demanded, staring at Shennong and the priest with dark fury.

“Lie Shan!” The tribe screamed, so wrought with fear as if annihilation was staring at them dead in the eye. Even Shennong was no exception.

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etvolare's Thoughts

Ah, I'm excited for a cultivation heavy arc!