“Inverted Star River!”
Star Swordlife was resorting to a killing move, a sword that could seal devils. Starlight glittered brightly, and if one looked closely into it, they would see countless stars being born, and at the same time, countless stars being destroyed. And all of the stars shot forth with the momentum of immortal worlds.
Yet again, the sword light stabbed into Yang Qi’s heart while Yang Qi simply stood there, not doing a thing to protect himself. A huge, bloody hole opened up in his chest and he let loose a sigh of bemoaning the state of the universe and pitying the fate of mankind.
“Star Swordlife,” he said, obviously not making any move to retaliate, “I’ve let you stab me twice now with your sword. Isn’t that enough to prove that I'm free of sin and enmity? You usually go around talking about how whenever possible, you should spare your enemy. So why aren’t you willing to spare me? I'm making a good faith offer to work together and stand up to Proud Heaven. Even if you don’t want to work together, there’s no need to stab me over and over. Don’t tell me that all your benevolence, righteousness, and mercy all disappear when you’re in my presence.”
“Your words are elegant, but insincere,” Star Swordlife said through gritted teeth. “Nothing you say will convince me to refrain from sealing you.” Yet again, he launched another attack, a torrent of sword energy stabbed toward Yang Qi.
Everyone watched as dozens of deep slash marks appeared all over Yang Qi, exposing bones and even slashing apart some of his meridians.
He didn’t attempt to evade, nor did he fight back.
Meanwhile, Star Swordlife pulsed with a perverse energy as he attacked like a maniac. He was so focused on defeating and sealing Yang Qi that every blow he struck was filled with a most intense sword energy. Normally speaking, he would have been able to seal an enemy without injuring them, but in this case, his sword energy didn’t help at all to control Yang Qi, and in the end, could only hurt him.
As he stabbed Yang Qi over and over again, an opponent who wasn’t even fighting back, Star Swordlife felt the urge to spare him. After all, repeatedly attacking someone who refused to fight back really did violate Star Swordlife’s dao of life. But if you ride a tiger, it's hard to get off. He was too dead set on sealing Yang Qi, who he was convinced would eventually get much stronger and become too much of a threat.
“Profound Heaven God Sword!”
It was a special technique from the Strength of the Hell-Crushing Godmammoth. Instead of sword energy that looked like a river of stars, this seemed like heaven itself, profound and full of mysteries.
The attack hit the top of Yang Qi’s head, slashing a gaping wound into him out of which blood poured like a waterfall. It was miserable to say the least.
Yet Yang Qi still didn’t fight back. “The knot of enmity should be untied, not tightened, Star Swordlife. You yourself said the words: Revenge breeds revenge; will there ever be an end to it? I'm not fighting back, and considering you’re using killing moves, that means you’ve already killed me seventy times. And your last attack should’ve cut me in half. Haven't you unleashed enough retribution to resolve our enmity?”
“You!” Star Swordlife spat, his eyebrows rising. “Don’t even think of trying to pull a fast one on me, Yang Qi. I know what you’re doing. You're intentionally letting yourself be hurt to gain my confidence. You're trying to shake my will. Unfortunately for you, my will can never be shaken. I'm going to seal you! Seal you up utterly and thoroughly!”
“Why aren’t you fighting back, Yang Qi?” Proud World called. “Given your cultivation, this brat isn’t a match for you at all!”
“Just hold on,” Doom said to him quietly. “Yang Qi is using other methods to strike directly at Star Swordlife’s ideals. Star Swordlife uses all sorts of fallacious reasoning and claims to espouse a philosophy of benevolence, righteousness, and life force. So when Yang Qi refuses to fight back, he’s setting a person’s own spear against his shield. As Star Swordlife’s ideals crumble, his attacks become more effective, but at the same time, losing his ideals is turning him into something no better than the walking dead. Eventually, he’ll go mad and kill himself.”
“Oh, I see!” the Shepherd said. “A very clever move on the part of Yang Qi. Obviously we can’t interfere, otherwise Star Swordlife will turn on us. But isn’t Yang Qi’s vital energy going to be wasted being hit so many times?”
“I was worried about that as well,” Doom said. “But Brother Yang Qi is enigmatic and impossible to predict. I suspect he has a reason for going through this. So let’s wait and see what happens. In any case, now that the masked face has been sealed, we’re not in any danger here.”
“Sure. Let’s wait and see what happens.”
The three of them backed up a bit and continued watching the fight between Star Swordlife and Yang Qi.
Things had really been turned upside down. Normally, Star Swordlife was the one who helped others, always trying to make sure they had a chance to come out of a situation alive. He would even save the most wicked and evil people, refusing to either kill or seal them. But now he was attacking Yang Qi like a rabid wolf, causing blood to spray everywhere as he used increasingly deadly attacks.
Yet Yang Qi still wasn't fighting back. For him, it was actually serving as a session of cultivation, because although it looked like Star Swordlife was slashing him into bloody ribbons, he was actually redirecting each blow to the masks in his sea of energy.
Star Swordlife’s sword energy was backed by his immense Inheritor powers, as well as the Strength of the Hell-Crushing Godmammoth. Of course, his sword energy was strong to begin with, even before he had been directly blessed by Proud Heaven.
Considering that he had amazing energy arts and was in the mid Terrifying level, he hoped that he would be able to free himself from the control of Proud Heaven. Regardless, his sword technique could be considered to be at the acme of perfection. And Yang Qi was using his own remarkable abilities to redirect those attacks to the masks.
The thirty-six masks were protected by the powers of illusion, but thanks to the way Yang Qi was battering them with Star Swordlife’s power, those illusions were being destroyed and turned into psychic power that poured into Yang Qi’s sea of consciousness.
The thirty-six masks were unique treasures from the god world, and were no less amazing than the items from the seventy-two monarchs. The truth was that no one in existence knew their full story. But one thing was for sure: they were immensely powerful, and anyone who fell victim to the powerful illusions they could create would be forever befuddled and unable to break free.
Slowly but surely, Yang Qi was breaking them down.
Suddenly, an explosion rocked his sea of consciousness as one of the smaller masks collapsed, becoming pure psychic will that flowed into his nascent divinity. With that addition, he could create the visage of the mask on top of his face any time he wanted.
Simultaneously, his psychic scale shot upward.
‘Amazing!’ he thought. ‘These bronze masks aren’t actually magical treasures. They’re made of pure emotion! The emotions of numerous almighty entities. It's like how the boundless buddhas of ancient times could reveal their core nature by means of their face, whether that was fury, grief, elation, or worry.’ Yang Qi continued allowing Star Swordlife to hit him with sword energy, which he then used to break down the masks. One by one, they collapsed and became energy that flowed into his nascent divinity. Eventually, thirty-six different streams of emotions came to exist within him.
As for the main mask, it was completely expressionless, almost ordinary in nature, as though it didn't contain anything that could affect emotions.
In other words, the emotions were annulled.
Whatever almighty being had created this mask and led the others, that entity had gained enlightenment of how to annul one’s emotions.
All of a sudden, Yang Qi understood the meaning of the thirty-six masks. They represented the most fundamental, and at the same time most elevated emotions of both humans and gods.
The first mask represented ignorance. After that was foolishness. Then came anger, bitterness, and distress. Last came joy, tranquility, and emptiness. All of the emotions were embodiments of cultivation levels. 
If he could completely assimilate all thirty-six masks and experience all thirty-six emotions, he could unleash the psychic cultivation techniques of the boundless entities who had created them.
His psychic scale rose from two hundred and sixty to three hundred, and at that point, he knew he couldn’t hold on very much longer; he had no choice but to break through to the next level.
A psychic tempest raged around him like a thunder-filled tornado, and pestilential energy filled the area around the sealing mark. Meanwhile, all of the wounds Star Swordlife had inflicted on Yang Qi healed and a psychic halo appeared behind his head.
Just like that, he reached the mid Terrifying level.
Never before had he been this strong.
He was still on the fifth stair of the Deathless Heavenly Stairway. He did not become a Grand Emperor; but that was an even more terrifying thing. To have a mid Terrifying will convergence without being a Grand Emperor was something rare even among the elite young ones in the god world.
He extended his palm, and Star Swordlife’s latest attack was brushed away, sent tumbling backward with blood spraying out of his mouth.
It took only one move for him to defeat the insufferably arrogant Star Swordlife.
Using Star Swordlife to help improve his cultivation had worked.
And now, it was time for Star Swordlife to finally die.
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