Heartless and faithless?
Ye Futian looked at Lian Qingyi and smiled. "Qingyao has the same surname as me; thus, she calls me brother. Dont you think, in that case, that it would not be fitting for me to hand her over to you? Moreover, since the Hell wants her, why do they not come and get her themselves if they are so strong that they conquered the Hidden Land Realm? You are not being honest with me, are you, Goddess?"
Lian Qingyis expression changed slightly when she heard him say this. This was indeed a matter that had been tasked to her by her superiors. If she could complete it successfully, she would have the chance to come to the attention of the forces behind Hell.
This was incredibly important to her. As far as she was concerned, the Hidden Land Realm and the Void Realm were only holding her back now. She wanted to find a new, more powerful master.
"You are putting too much thought into this," she said. "None of the great powers of the Hidden Land Realm had the power to resist the power of Hell. Can you imagine, then, how powerful the forces behind Hell must be, Emperor Ye? I know it is hard for you to accept this, but after all, she is only a girl that you have not known for long. The many people of the Heavenly Mandate Academy are all your friends. Is it worth putting all of their lives at risk just for this one girl?"
"Do you think that this is the way I see the matter?" said Ye Futian with a sarcastic smile. "I can remember the opening of the Gate of Hell. The things that happened before that attracted the attention of all the Nine Realms. Were there any figures from the Hidden Land Realm among them?"
Lian Qingyi stared at him, then smiled and stood, saying, "I can tell your mind is made up, so there seems to be no more need to discuss this. Since you doubt me so much, I will say farewell. I hope you will take care of yourself."
Ye Futian smiled as well, saying, "In the past, Hell was destroyed and wiped away by the Nine Realms. You should think long and hard about your choice. I dont need to see you out. You can find your own way out."
A cold look came into Lian Qingyis eyes. She turned and left.
The whole group left with her, soon disappearing from the Heavenly Mandate Realm.
After they left, Ye Futian turned and said, "Still eavesdropping, I see." Ye Qingyao came out, pulling Nianyu behind her, with her head lowered. Although she did not understand these forces, she was becoming mature enough to begin to have some idea of what they wanted.
"Qingyao, you shouldnt worry about any of this," said Ye Futian, stepping forward and placing a hand on her shoulder.
"Mmm," she said with a nod. Then she pulled Nianyus hand and said, "Lets go play, Nianyu."
"Okay," said Nianyu. She looked at Ye Futian, then left with Qingyao.
"That girl is hiding something in her heart," said Lord Taixuan, walking up. "Nianyu will always tell you when she wants something, but Qingyao is different. She is not good at expressing herself, but would rather hide her feelings inside. This was caused by the environment she grew up in."
Ye Futian nodded slightly, then said, "My Lord, Hell was wiped out many years ago. They have laid low ever since then and are only now coming back. This must mean that they have some misgivings."
"Of course. The world has been conquered by Donghuang the Great, but the powers behind Hell are no less than him. But they were defeated once," said Lord Taixuan. "Thus, they must want to take Qingyao away directly. That is why they sent people here to threaten us."
Ye Futian nodded. Lian Qingyao had acted like she was concerned for him, but how could he not have heard the threat behind her words? She wanted him to give Qingyao to her directly.
As the two of them were talking, Lord Taixuan looked up into the distance and said, "They are here. I did not think they would come so quickly."
As he said this, Ye Futian felt another aura, an incredibly powerful one that made everyone who felt it feel uncomfortable. Soon, golden divine light fell from high up in the sky, covering the Heavenly Mandate Academy.
The cultivators of the academy looked up into the sky and saw the endless divine light. A group of Buddha-like figures stood there as if they had come from heaven.
The cultivators of the Mountain Realm had come.
On the battlefield of Hell, Ye Futian had learned that the Mountain Realm had been involved in the decisive battle with Hell all those years ago.
Gui Zang was among them as well.
Ye Futian had seen the man at their head before. It was Master Pudu.
Up in the sky, all the Buddhas folded their hands together, and they suddenly began chanting. Master Pudu said, "All of the monks of Tianxian Temple are here to visit the Heavenly Mandate Academy if that is convenient for you."
"Please come in," said Lord Taixuan, looking up into the sky. Suddenly, the people from Tianxian Temple strode forward, entering the academy. Soon, they had reached Lord Taixuan and Ye Futian.
The monks all bowed slightly to him, saying, "Forgive us for disturbing you, Lord."
"It is no problem. We are honored to have you," said Lord Taixuan with a smile. "Why have you come?"
"Have you heard the news from the Hidden Land Realm?" asked Master Pudu.
"I have," said Lord Taixuan with a nod. "Hell has reappeared and conquered the realm. I do not know if this is what effects this will have, good or bad."
"I must tell you, Hells next target will likely be the Heavenly Mandate Academy," continued Pudu. This made a slight look of surprise come over Lord Taixuan and Ye Futians faces. Tianxian Temple was well informed.
Pudu looked at Ye Futian and said, "Benefactor Ye, I saw the girl Ye Qingyao once before in Jiuyou City. Might I see her more closely?"
"Why do you seek Qingyao, Master?" asked Ye Futian.
"The girl is very important. Hell will come here for her. I hope you will let us see why she is so important to them," continued Pudu. Ye Futian could not very well refuse him. Moreover, he already knew about Qingyao, so he had probably already figured out a good deal of the matter.
They would not be able to hide her.
His spiritual consciousness spread out until he found where she was. He said, "Loulan, bring Qingyao here."
On saying this, he and the others waited there calmly. Not long after, Ye Qingyao arrived. When she saw everyone there, she could not help but lower her head a little.
"Come here, Qingyao," said Ye Futian with a smile. Ye Qingyao stepped lightly over to his side.
He placed his left hand on her shoulder and said to Pudu, "Here she is."
Pudu looked at her. In a flash, Buddha light glowed. Chanting filled the air. Pudu placed his hands on his chest and fingered his Buddhist beams. He closed his eyes but seemed to open his spiritual ones. It was as if the light had become his eyes. They pierced through all illusions, revealing the truth.
Soon, Pudus expression slightly changed. The Buddha light seemed to have been infected by a great power.
The Buddha beads in his hand changed faster and faster.
Crack! A clear sound rang out as the Buddha beads broke and fell to the ground.
Pudu opened his eyes. He, he was normally as peaceful as a Buddha, seemed as furious as Vajra. His eyes were frightening to behold, and Qingyao was so scared that she would have fallen backward if Ye Futian had not held her up.
Ye Futian looked at Pudu and saw killing intent in his eyes. He frowned and stood in front of Qingyao.
Qingyao seemed terrified. She hugged him tightly.
"Master," called out Lord Taixuan. Only then did Master Pudu retract his aura. "Master," said Lord Taixuan, his tone a bit dangerous, "Are Buddhists not supposed to be compassionate? What is the meaning of this?"
"Benefactor Ye, she cannot stay," said Master Pudu.
"You are overstepping yourself, Master," said Ye Futian coldly.
"Listen to me, Benefactor Ye. She will bring disaster," said Master Pudu.
"You can tell the future?" said Ye Futian.
"I cannot," said Pudu with a shake of the head.
"So you are just guessing?" said Ye Futian. "Do Buddhist monks also kill indiscriminately?"
"This is fate," said Master Pudu.
"I dont care about fate. She is just a girl, a girl who has never hurt anyone. Do you not think that you are overreacting?" said Ye Futian.
Pudu looked dispirited. He lowered his head slightly and said, "If it is a sin, I am willing to bear it."
"How can you bear it?" asked Ye Futian coldly. "Is there anything in Buddhism about trading a life for a life?
Pudu said nothing.
"If that is the way it is, then you must look after yourself. You are no longer welcome at the Heavenly Mandate Academy," said Ye Futian. When Pudu heard Ye Futians words, he sighed inwardly. He looked at the girl, who poked her head out with tears in her eyes. At that moment, her eyes were clear and bright, making Pudu feel guilty and ashamed. But he could not forget what he had seen.
"Its alright, Qingyao," said Ye Futian softly. Ye Qingyao looked up at him and smiled slightly. "Thank you, brother."
Seeing this, Pudu clasped his hands together, and the chanting began again. "Since you are firm in this," he said, "I will desist. I hope that you can prevent anything bad from happening."
Ye Futian ignored him, so he continued, "I apologize for disturbing you. We will station ourselves in Heavenly Mandate City. This girl cannot fall into Hells hands.
On saying this, he took his people and left.
Ye Futian was speechless. He was the first person to realize that Qingyao was special, but Pudu had obviously seen something as well, and what he had seen was different than what Ye Futian had seen.
The powers behind Hell were probably thinking of her as well.
He had no way to predict what would happen next.
"Qingyao, no matter what happens, dont grow to hate the world. Can you promise me that?" said Ye Futian, looking into her eyes.
"Yes," she said, nodding seriously. Then she smiled and said, "I will always listen to you, brother, no matter where you are."
"Good girl," he said, patting her head. "Lets go and find Yaya."
Over the next few days, many people arrived at Heavenly Mandate City. The people of Heavenly Mandate Academy could sense them clearly.
Many of the people from the forces that were coming were very strong. They came from other realms, and some came from the Outer Realms.
The news had come from somewhere that Hell was looking for someone, a girl. And this girl was at the Heavenly Mandate Academy.
As more and more cultivators arrived, the people of Heavenly Mandate City could sense that a storm would descend upon the academy once again!