Because of the limited time, the Conference Center of the New Federation at the center of Grand Desolate City was not completed yet.
The walls, still the color of lead gray, were yet to be painted and decorated. The vast ceiling was packed with complicated tubes. Crystal cables were dangling down like boas. Even the seats were not installed yet but scattered in all the containers.
The hundred Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators, however, were not bothered in the least. They sat or stood in the messy conference hall casually, filling the shabby room with a sacred solemnity.
Li Yao felt that his head was dizzy when he walked into the conference hall.
On the dark ceiling, the illumination rune arrays and the light beam projectors were glittering, casting him into the illusion that he was in an open field under a starry sky.
Looking at the faces that were as calm as statues, Li Yao could not help but think about a lot of things.
He thought that, millions of years ago, before the fire of civilization of human beings had been ignited, were there two hundred apes who decided to gather together and wage war against enemies that were stronger and fiercer than themselves as a tribe because they could not stand the scourge and exploitation of the wolves, tigers, and leopards any longer?
The power of the light beam projector on the ceiling was increased to the maximum. Holograms with streaks and snowflakes fell into the crowd and condensed into dozens of virtual persons.
They were the demon emperors in the Blood Demon Sector and the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators in the Flying Star Sector.
The almost two hundred top-tier experts of the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the Blood Demon Sector and the Flying Star Sector had fully gathered!
Li Yao glanced at so many Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators with a pair of eyes that was devoid of spiritual energy.
Every face represented a thunderous and yet exciting name in his childhood.
But right now, the owners of the names were standing right next to them, and he was going to defend the civilization as one of them, too!
Such a feeling of walking into history was truly an indescribable experience.
While he was observing other people, he was being observed, too. The demon emperors from the Blood Demon Sector, particularly, rolled their eyes hard while they looked at the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators nearby.
It could not be helped. Such observation was naturally not very polite, but it was truly an unprecedented event that all the top experts from three Sectors were gathered in the same place. Even the seniors who had experienced too many things somewhat lost their calmness.
“Fellow Cultivators, the fact that we can gather in the same place and discuss the future is already a new history!”
Speaker Jiang Hailiu stepped on the podium, which was made of two boxes. Glancing around, he said slowly, “In the history of the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the Flying Star Sector, and the Blood Demon Sector, or even in the history of the past forty thousand years, such a miracle has never happened before. Two hundred top experts have gathered together, not bickering about the petty interests of their respective sects, not fighting for the insignificant differences on our body, but contributing all our wisdom, strength, courage, and imagination to a new war while letting go of the hatred and wariness of the past!
“This is the greatest, most righteous war because we are not fighting for our selfish interests, not for the ambition of the minority, but for ourselves, for our family, for the fate of our civilization!
“We must live on!
“No matter how formidable an enemy we are faced with, we will not wait to be killed. We will certainly fight back and live on at any cost until the most brilliant part of our civilization illuminates the entire sea of stars!”
His resolute declaration cast all the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator into deep thought. Even the demon emperors from the Blood Demon Sector were apparently moved and thinking hard.
To live on. What a simple and yet complicated, humble and yet noble, goal!
“My fellow Cultivators, you are all specialists and leaders in your respective fields. Time is precious. Also, our space communication array is still under testing. Every second of operation will consume tremendous crystals.
“This is just an unofficial assembly. We can save all the formalities. Since everybody has read all the files before the meeting, let’s seize the day and go to our topic now!
“First of all, I think that the one thing that everybody is eager to find out in this meeting is about the Covenant Alliance. Is the so-called ‘Alliance of the Holy Covenant’ real? Or maybe, is it just a trick that the Imperium of True Human Beings played and a crude strategical deception?
“The reason is simple. Before, we always considered the Imperium of True Human Beings to be our greatest enemy, and we planned to dedicate all our resources to deal with the Imperium. But right now, a Covenant Alliance, which is said to be even scarier than the Imperium, has popped up out of nowhere!
“In such a case, we will inevitably be less wary of the Imperium of True Human Beings, and we will even change our stance on the Imperium subconsciously.
“From the Imperium’s perspective, the subtle change of our attitude naturally greets with their interests.
“Therefore, many fellow Cultivators might be mumbled to yourselves. Does the Covenant Alliance, which is said to be a hundred more times evil than the Imperium, really exist? Is this the Imperium of True Human Beings’ plot?
“Are they using a nonexistent Covenant Alliance to intimidate the weaker forces in the universe, which are forced to seek shelter from the Imperium to avoid the aggression of the Covenant Alliance?
“If that is the case, the Imperium of True Human Beings will be able to conquer a large area of the sea of stars with no blood shed!”
In front of Li Yao, a virtual light beam was shining. It was a sign that Jiang Hailiu invited him to speak.
Li Yao was the discoverer of the Covenant Alliance. His foster father had claimed to be from the Covenant Alliance. Naturally, his opinion mattered most regarding the issue.
Li Yao had prepared his speech earlier. Therefore, gazed at by more than a hundred Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators, he was not very nervous. Unhurriedly, he said, “Seniors here, nice to meet you. I am Li Yao. My foster father claims that he is from the Covenant Alliance, and I believe what he said.
“I have two reasons.
“Firstly, my foster bestowed upon me a flying sword whose materials and structure are quite unique. It is definitely not something that can be manufactured in the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the Flying Star Sector, or the Blood Demon Sector. It is definitely from a force far more advanced than ours. The scraps of the flying sword are still inside my refining workshop. Everybody is free to study and analyze them!
“Secondly, assuming that it is part of the Imperium of True Human Beings’ scheme, nothing makes sense.
“When my foster father passed away, I was still in high school as an ordinary person with a low Spirit Actualization Quotient. Although I’m slightly gifted at hand speed and magical equipment maintenance, it is really nothing compared to the real geniuses of training.
“The jade chip that my foster father left to me, however, was set to be openable only if I am at the peak of the Core Formation Stage or higher!
“If the Covenant Alliance does not exist, and my foster father is a spy from the Imperium of True Human Beings, how could he have been certain that I would reach the Nascent Soul Stage one day?
“For me when I was in high school, odds were lower than one billionth that I could be a Cultivator of such a high level. How could the Imperium of True Human Beings have counted their scheme on such a low chance?
“Also, if it is really a strategical deception, wouldn’t my foster father have reduced everybody’s wariness if he showed up as a citizen of the Covenant Alliance and reminded everybody of the evilness of the Covenant Alliance and the righteousness of the Imperium? Why would he point out, bluntly and redundantly, that the Imperium of True Human Beings was a force no more righteous?”
The Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators all nodded quickly. Li Yao’s analysis was clearly reasonable enough.
“There’s one other thing.”
With a solemn face, Li Yao said earnestly, “Although my foster father asked us to join the Imperium of True Human Beings in his last words, it was obvious that he couldn’t have foreseen what would happen in the next twenty years. It must’ve been beyond his imagination that the Heaven’s Origin Sector, the Flying Star Sector, and the Blood Demon Sector would be collaborating!
“Then and now are different. Whatever he said, and even if the Covenant Alliance does exist, my opinion about the Imperium of True Human Beings will not be changed!
“No matter what their reason is, a force that produces one ‘star child’ by killing hundreds of babies is definitely the evilest force in my eyes!
“The Covenant Alliance and the Imperium are both our enemies, and I will not surrender to either of them!
“If one force can be called ‘the last guardian of humanity’, it is not going to be the Imperium of True Human Beings but us!”
Li Yao’s words moved all the Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators and the demon emperors.
Many Nascent Soul Stage Cultivators who had not met him before observed the plain-looking young man again. They seemed to understand why he could be the youngest Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator of the three Sectors from his words now.
At the very least, his declaration was proud and straightforward enough!
Then, another Nascent Soul Stage Cultivator requested to speak. It was Zhou Yifu, a historian who studied the fall of the Star Ocean Imperium.
“I agree with Fellow Cultivator Li that the Covenant Alliance is real despite the lack of solid evidence. But I would like to illustrate a side view, which is the mutation of the Imperium of True Human Beings. How exactly did the Cultivators at the center of the cosmos degenerate into Immortal Cultivators?” Zhou Yifu said unhurriedly.
“It is well known that, after thirty thousand years of the Great Dark Era, human beings rose again and established the Star Ocean Imperium that spanned the universe.
“Although it was an Imperium, and the system it adopted was a combination of a dictatorship and feudalism, the overall social form of the Star Ocean Imperium was relatively positive, bright, and righteous.
“Cultivators of the Star Ocean Imperium, including the monarch Supreme Emperor, although still carrying the bad habits of the old days, had basically agreed that ‘Cultivators are the sabers of humanity’, ‘Cultivators originate from ordinary people and can give birth to ordinary people’, and other modern opinions.
“That is perhaps the case for any imperium at the beginning. The ruler that rose from the folk would pay attention to the feeling of the general public and know the importance of relying on them.
“Moreover, the Star Ocean Imperium justified its regime by the slogan ‘overthrow the tyranny of demons and liberate all the human beings in the universe’, which was the foundation of the Star Ocean Imperium. It could not be changed easily.
“Such an imperium that was relatively bright and righteous, before decaying and degrading, was already crumbled in the Armageddon Rebellion and destroyed!
“Although the Star Ocean Imperium disappeared as quickly as it rose, the pure spirit of the country was preserved without being sullied at all, encouraging all human beings in the universe.
“Today, most of the civilizations of human beings, including the Star Glory Federation, are still proud of being a successor of the Star Ocean Imperium and willing to pass on the spirit of the country!
“Here comes the question. Now that the Imperium of True Human Beings has occupied the prosperous area of the Star Ocean Imperium and considers itself to be the rightful heir to the Star Ocean Imperium, it must’ve more or less inherited the spirit of the Star Ocean Imperium that the ordinary people are worth fighting for.
“Why does this imperium act oppositely from that imperium, and how did the Cultivators become Immortal Cultivators?”