Seeing Long Chen reach the top gave countless people hope. They did their best to climb, but some didn’t even manage to reach the second part before being sent out.
There were people failing with each passing moment. Currently, three hundred thousand people were still persevering on the Xuantian Staircase, and the majority of them had reached the middle section.
As for the Dragonblood warriors, they were past the eighth hundredth step, but their speed was clearly much slower. However, their footsteps never paused.
“In truth, there’s no need to go all-out like this. As long as they keep advancing, slowing down will save energy.” Mu Qingxuan shook her head as she watched the Dragonblood warriors climbing while sparing no effort.
“They know that,” said Long Chen.
“If they know, why bother?”
“They aren’t fighting against the Xuantian Staircase but against themselves. That’s why they are climbing so quickly, to push themselves to their limits. Our talent is only average, and our origins are low. To reach our current height, we had to bleed and sweat. We have to go all-out like this every day, to not give up any chance to improve ourselves. This kind of trial that has no threat to our lives is especially perfect. We can push ourselves to our limits, and then break those limits again and again. Only then can we increase the chances of our survival the most.”
Mu Qingxuan was startled. Long Chen’s words were spoken carefreely, but she could tell how much pain the Dragonblood Legion had endured.
“All of you are true warriors,” praised Mu Qingxuan.
“Well, there was no other choice. To live, we could only get stronger.” Long Chen bitterly smiled.
The Dragonblood warriors didn’t hold back at all, climbing as fast as they could. They felt weary, but they did that on purpose. The wearier they were, the more they could excavate their potential. They were using their powerful negative emotions to encourage themselves.
Yan Mochen, Wei Changhai, and Han Yunshan were being thrown further and further into the distance despite doing their best. Originally, they were only fifty steps behind. But now that they were over a hundred steps behind, causing them to clench their teeth in fury.
The three of them were rank five Celestials, but they were actually unable to catch up. Instead, the distance only grew larger. This was a silent slap in the face.
At this time, Zhao Ziyan slowly surpassed and created an uncrossable distance between them, infuriating them even more.
“How stupid. Afraid their own negative emotions weren’t enough, they added envy on as well,” said Long Chen.
“They truly are a bit foolish.” Mu Qingxuan was unable to retort against that.
During the final section, a person’s negative emotions would burst out and rapidly grow. The more envious they were, the more furious they became and the more difficult it would be to advance. Perhaps the three of them had still yet to understand the meaning of the Xuantian Staircase.
A beautiful figure stepped onto the 999th stair. It was Tang Wan-er. Her face was a bit pale, and she was covered in sweat. But within her weariness was excitement.
“It’s been hard on you.” Long Chen smiled and used a handkerchief to gently wipe away her sweat, startling her.
“Long Chen…” Tang Wan-er was moved. This was the first time Long Chen treated her so warmly, even publicly pampering her like this.
“I can do it myself.” She took the handkerchief and dabbed at her sweat. But while stealthily blocking Long Chen’s sight, she dabbed away a few tears.
“Perhaps I should be kinder to her,” thought Long Chen. Although Tang Wan-er hid her movements well, she couldn’t hide them from him. He felt a profound sense of self-blame.
Tang Wan-er was always fiery, direct and unyielding. Because she cared about him, she intentionally displayed some disdain for his conduct.
But in truth, she needed care as well. However, she didn’t want Long Chen to see her as weak, so she acted fiercely like a mother tigress.
Long Chen had misunderstood her. She was a staunch woman, and this inadvertent movement caused him to see another side to her.
“Wan-er, I’m sorry. I haven’t looked after you enough.” Long Chen sincerely apologized and pulled Tang Wan-er into his embrace. Tang Wan-er jumped in surprise.
“You’ve gone crazy. There are so many people here! You’ll be laughed at,” she rebuked. She quickly escaped from his grasp, and while her face was red, she had a warm smile.
“Let me see who dares to laugh? I’ll curse them to never find a woman in their lifetime,” said Long Chen grandly.
“Then it’s fortunate that I’m not afraid of this curse. I’m not looking for women,” laughed Mu Qingxuan from the side.
“Cough, senior apprentice-sister, naturally you don’t count,” laughed Long Chen awkwardly.
Suddenly, a startled cry rang out with a bang. Guo Ran had been tossed to the ground.
“You really worked me to death.” Gu Yang was soaked in sweat, looking like he had just climbed out of a pool. Even the stone beneath his feet was wet. Carrying Guo Ran had completely exhausted him.
“Brother, it’s been hard on you. Junior brother must repay your kindness-”
“Shut up. It’d be better for you to pour me some water and prove your gratefulness with your actions instead of your glib words.” Gu Yang sat on the ground.
Guo Ran hastily prepared some tea. If it hadn’t been for Gu Yang, he wouldn’t have been able to reach this point even if he exhausted himself to death. He had to quickly repay this favor.
The other Dragonblood warriors arrived one by one. Each one of them was weary to the bone, but their eyes were full of pride. They were the first ones to reach the top of the Xuantian Staircase, leaving even rank five Celestials in their dust. That was an honor.
Furthermore, they had obtained a new status now that they had climbed the staircase: disciples of the Xuantian Dao Sect. This was their first step in establishing their footing in the Central Plains.
Six hours later, Zhao Ziyan also arrived. But she clearly wasn’t as tired as them. In fact, she seemed like it had been quite effortless.
“Congratulations. In the future, we’ll be part of the same sect, so I’ll have to ask you to look after me.” Long Chen greeted Zhao Ziyan once she arrived.
“Brother Long overpraises me. It should be you looking after me. Is the Dragonblood Legion accepting new people? Do I have the qualifications to join?” Zhao Ziyan smiled.
“I…” Long Chen was startled, never having expected her to ask such a question.
The Dragonblood Legion wasn’t something just anyone could join. This question made him feel awkward. If he flatly refused, it would be too awkward.
“Junior sister was just joking. Brother Long, don’t take it seriously. I’m tired, so I’ll go rest.” Zhao Ziyan laughed and said goodbye, finding an isolated place to sit.
Once Zhao Ziyan left, Tang Wan-er whispered, “This sister is angry.”
“What are you talking about? I don’t see any anger,” said Long Chen.
“I’m a woman, and this is my woman’s intuition,” said Tang Wan-er. Seeing Long Chen ignore her, she continued, “If a beautiful woman wants to join, why would you decline? Don’t you like beautiful women the most?”
“Exactly, exactly-” Guo Ran hastily shut his mouth when Long Chen glared at him.
“Our Dragonblood Legion is a complete whole, and we’ve all saved each other’s lives. Others can’t join just because their cultivation base is high, their talent is good, or they’re beautiful. The reason we’re so strong together is because we’re united and can trust each other. A stranger joining in would bring danger to the entire legion, so how could I let an outsider join so easily?” said Long Chen.
Seeing how solemn he was, Tang Wan-er stopped speaking. Guo Ran also kept a hand clamped over his mouth. They understood.
Although Tang Wan-er’s words had been partly a joke to tease Long Chen, she hadn’t expected Long Chen to be thinking so much. He couldn’t bring danger to the entire Dragonblood Legion because he wanted to pick up girls.
Two hours later, Han Yunshan and the others also finally reached the top. Their expressions were exceedingly ugly, and they were panting for breath, appearing extremely miserable.
Due to their envy and hatred for Long Chen, their path had been even more difficult. That had made them waste even more time and energy.
More and more disciples began to arrive. Some of them directly fainted upon reaching the top and relaxing.
Currently, only thirty thousand people passed. Over four hundred thousand people had washed out, and there were still many people persevering on the staircase.
Suddenly, a huge hourglass appeared at the top of the staircase. Mu Qingxuan announced, “There are still three days left. The people still on the staircase should work hard.”
Seeing that hourglass, quite a few people’s expressions changed. Their power was limited, and they were climbing at a snail’s pace right now. Now that there was a time limit, the pressure immediately increased.
As a result, quite a few disciples immediately gave up once the hourglass appeared. They knelt on the stairs, and were directly sent off the Xuantian Staircase.
This hourglass caused many people’s confidence to shatter. They felt like there was no hope, and continuing to fight had no meaning.
One after another, figures were sent off the Xuantian Staircase. Only ten thousand people were still persevering.
The majority of them were around the eight hundredth stair, with a small portion around the seven hundredth stair. As for the six hundredth stair, only a few dozen people were still bitterly enduring, unwilling to give up.
“Idiots, I gave up and I was already on the seven hundredth stair. For them to stupidly continue at the six hundredth stair, there’s no hope at all,” mocked someone.
But Long Chen couldn’t help but nod when he saw those few people still bitterly enduring despite there being no hope. As long as the results weren’t in, the opportunities were still in your hands. The only way to lose was to give up. Even if it was just the slightest, ephemeral bit, it was still an opportunity. Not giving up was in itself a remarkable drive.
“Time’s up,” announced Mu Qingxuan as the final grain of sand fell.Previous Chapter Next Chapter