Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
Ye Futian wore a funny expression as he looked at Mo Jun.
Does he really think that we would have been able to win if that piece were placed where Liu Zong said to? Or rather, is he venting all that frustration from losing the game on me?
Ye Futian smiled and looked at Mo Jun, saying, “I’m here all the way from the Barren State and I respect the sacred grounds of all the other states. I’m also curious what the students of the sacred ground of the Eastern State are like as well. But now, I’m sorry to say I feel rather disappointed.” He turned around and left as soon as he finished, not bothering to argue with Mo Jun further.
A spark was seen in Mo Jun’s eyes as he stared at Ye Futian with a dumbfounded expression. It was apparent that he felt surprised.
Sage Wanxiang and the others glanced at Mo Jun coldly, then Sage Wanxiang added, “The Nine State Forum was named as such due to it being an event involving all nine states. Can the event truly be called such a name if the Barren State were to be absent? It would be a sign of discourtesy on Xihua Sacred Mountain, the sacred ground of the Eastern State, if the Barren State were to not be invited to the event. We at the Barren State will reflect on ourselves and progress further despite the slight, but as a student of a saint of Xihua Sacred Mountain, you actually dared to suggest a sacred ground of the Barren State simply watch from the stands, and you dared behave so disrespectfully to a Palace Lord of a sacred ground. You might be proud of such behavior yourself, but the world will think less of your teachers because of what you did. As such, I advise you to choose your words wisely.
“As for chess, the Celestial Dragon Chess Game is right before your eyes. If you think you know the game so well, feel free to break it and show the world that you truly know how to play chess.”
Mo Jun glared at Sage Wanxiang. The guests from the Barren State jabbed at him sarcastically and mercilessly, yet he had nothing to say back to them.
Mo Jun smiled and recomposed himself, before bowing and saying, “It is my fault for being discourteous. I shall take this to be a lesson and be more aware of my actions.”
Everyone turned their eyes at Mo Jun. His behavior at the moment befitted that of a student of a saint. He apologized instead of lashing out in rage at the other party’s words.
Sage Wanxiang said nothing further and left the scene.
The Celestial Dragon Chess Game remained. Countless eyes gazed at the crowd on top of Chess Peak. The inability of Liu Zong and the other eight top-tier players at chess at breaking the game spoke volumes of the Celestial Dragon Chess Game’s ferocity. It seemed that the Celestial Dragon Chess Game was not something that could be broken with just a single day’s effort.
As for the matter with Ye Futian, it was regarded as little more than a side story. No one knew what the outcome would have been if Ye Futian simply placed that piece as he had been told. But the attitude of Zhou Ziyi and Mo Jun spoke clearly of the status of the Barren State among the nine states. Despite Ye Futian being one of the younger generations, he was still a Palace Lord of a sacred ground of the Barren State. None of them would have dared spoken in such a manner if it had been a representative of a sacred ground of other states. The attitude seen in a person’s words and actions would say a lot about the status of the one being addressed.
Of course, Liu Zong did not chastise Ye Futian. He said nothing even though Ye Futian ended up not placing that piece as told. From that point alone, his bearing and depth of virtue had naturally been leagues above that of Mo Jun.
Ye Futian walked to a remote area of Chess Peak. Sage Wanxiang and the others all followed him. Sage Wanxiang then said, “Why not try again?”
“It won’t do any good. While I’ve made a lot of progress learning how to play chess, I still know where I stand. My current level says that I have no chance at breaking that game,” Ye Futian said.
“Doesn’t seem like you to be giving up so easily,” Zhuge Mingyue smiled and said.
Hua Jieyu walked to Ye Futian’s side and he seemed rather solemn. Was he affected by Mo Jun’s words?
“Not quite. Just look at how long I’ve been playing chess. Yang Xiao and the other eight are students of the Chess Saint. It’s completely normal for me to be unable to break it.” Ye Futian smiled while shaking his head. “Well, Mo Jun’s words might have been very irritating, but it shows the predicament the Barren State is facing at the moment. The Holy Zhi Palace is still a sacred ground of the Barren State, yet a student of a saint actually insulted us by saying that we were only fit to watch from the grandstands. While he was definitely discourteous, it still reflects what people of other states think about the Barren State.”
“The load is heavy and the road is long indeed.” Sage Wanxiang added, “We wouldn’t have chosen you to become the Palace Lord otherwise, would we?”
Ye Futian smiled. The act of the previous Palace Lord choosing Ye Futian to be his heir was a gamble in itself. Douzhan, the Sword Demon, or any of the other lords would have been able to simply take the place of Palace Lord. Ye Futian was, after all, still a noble. However, the previous Palace Lord knew of the Barren State’s status and he had a strong sense of crisis. He would not have placed the will of the Holy Zhi Palace on Bai Luli, hoping for him to grow quickly otherwise.
“Yeah.” Ye Futian nodded. He looked up at the sky and said, “Didn’t we venture outside of the Barren State just so we could grow stronger?” He smiled and added, “I’ll remain behind at Chess Peak to continue learning about the game. There is no need for any of you to be concerned.”
“Will do.” Wanxiang nodded.
Ye Futian had been through a lot back in the Barren State and naturally would not get upset over some trivial matters. He was simply thinking about things. Mo Jun’s attitude probably said more than Mo Jun himself; it also spoke volume about the sacred ground Mo Jun trained in, as well as how the other states looked at the Barren State. That was the pressure Ye Futian faced at the moment.
Everyone else but Hua Jieyu and Yu Sheng left. Hua Jieyu remained by his side while Yu Sheng sat behind nonchalantly with Yuan Hong.
The other side of Chess Peak was still bustling. There were many geniuses who attempted to break the Celestial Dragon Chess Game. None succeeded, yet there was always someone from the crowd trying. Liu Zong remained there still, but he did not continue breaking the game; he simply sat there and learned.
A day passed quickly and Yang Xiao announced that they were done for the day. The crowd dispersed gradually. Yang Xiao and his people left as well, while the chessboard remained hanging in midair, shining brilliantly and emanating mystical aura like some mystical treasure.
Many mighty ones from the Chess Saint Villa stood guard over the chessboard, but none dared do anything untoward against it. While rumors had it that the Chess Saint was about to pass, none were certain that the saint was indeed going to pass on. No one dared pulled anything funny in a saint’s domain. Furthermore, even if the Chess Saint was truly not present, Yang Xiao was still a mighty one ranked on the Sage Ranking of the Sage and Saint Ranking.
Ye Futian did not leave. He continued training on one of the stone platforms on Chess Peak.
The sky turned dark and many left one after another, with only the mighty ones guarding the chessboard. Ye Futian remained sitting on the platform quietly, recalling the game that had been played earlier that day.
He felt rather exhausted after having run the simulations for quite a while. He opened his eyes and gazed at the sky before him. The chessboard was still there and it continued to shine brilliantly with a mystical sheen. He activated Freedom Meditation and felt as if he was seeing what had taken place during the day. 18 people standing on the chessboard at the same time. Pieces placed on the board one after another. The scenes continued to be played in his mind.
At that moment, rustles of the World Tree within his Life Palace were heard. Lines crisscrossed above the tree and something appeared. Those lines vaguely manifested into a chessboard. The images in his mind came to be played directly on that board itself. Ye Futian seemed to have felt something. His expression changed a little bit and he closed his eyes once again, sending his consciousness back into the Life Palace.
At that moment, his silhouette seemed to have appeared in his Life Palace, looking at the chessboard. Changes took place on the chessboard. All 18 silhouettes seemed to have been projected directly in his mind.
“Interesting.” Ye Futian sported an amused expression. He never expected a chessboard to appear in his Life Palace.