Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
There have actually been quite a lot of cultivators from all over the nine states mingling among the vast, massive crowd there. Those foreigners were hardly eye-catching among so many people, as it was impossible to tell who was from where from appearances alone.
“This ritual implement looks interesting.” Light-hearted laughter was heard. A path was carved out in the crowd, and the people actually moved aside. A group of people was seen walking slowly up there, all of whom exuded a flighty, near-undetectable air, yet there actually manifested enough power to repel everyone around them. From the way they were dressed and the bearing they exuded, everyone knew that people from others were finally on the stage. The group of people was dressed in azure garb, which looked incredibly eye-catching. They were all very good-looking and their skin looked incredibly supple despite being men.
“Go try it out,” the leader of the group told a young man at his side, who nodded and walked up to the bell. He emanated his aura, which was that of a noble. It was apparent that the young man was a cultivator who came to participate in the Nine State Forum.
Violent sounds of waves were vaguely heard as the man approached the Law Bell. He extended his hand and terrifying scenes seemed to have appeared around him, seeming like massive waves swallowing the earth as they crashed through. He struck the bell and it sounded as if that huge ancient bell was being hit by tsunamis within an instant.
Dong. A clear, loud sound reverberated in the heavens and the earth, which also swept through the crowd like a violent wave, making some grunt. Furthermore, everyone saw the images on the Law Bell light up one after another. There were actually three glowing images, which meant that he was even more powerful than the princess of the Great Zhou Sacred Dynasty. It was apparent that he was more talented than Zhou Ziyi in wielding the power of rules.
Zhou Ziyi’s eyes turned towards the young man and she looked rather irked. Am I getting pushed aside right after I made my entrance here?
Liu Zong also looked at the young man and extended his hand to take a Nine State Forum Token from the elder beside him. He then handed it over to the young man, saying, “Are you from Ocean State?”
“Celestial Cliffs of Ocean State,” the young man replied and Liu Zong nodded. The location of Ocean State was even more remote than that of the Eastern State. It was at the very far end of the east regions and vast oceans were found everywhere. There were countless islands and cities on the waters, with the largest city-on-sea said to be larger than even the Holy Capital of the Great Zhou Sacred Dynasty, but Liu Zong had never been there himself. Celestial Cliffs was one of the sacred grounds of Ocean State, the supreme force in all of Ocean State.
“I look forward to your performance in the forum,” Liu Zong smiled and said. Many were impressed by Liu Zong’s bearing as a representative of the hosting force.
“Thank you.” The young man retreated and there were others coming up to test themselves. The one who came next was bathed in dazzling light as they were being clad in holy armor, which was blindingly bright. That person struck the bell without saying anything. A glittering fist will pounded on the Law Bell right. The sound produced was loud and clear, reverberating for quite some time before subsiding.
Four images lit up on the bell.
“Such power.” Many who were watching were deeply impressed, so much so that the youth who was bathed in blinding light felt like a god of war descending upon the earth.
Liu Zong took another token and handed it to the youth, asking, “You’re from War State, I presume?”
“Indeed.” The youth took the token and nodded quietly before returning to his own place. Many more came out to test themselves, and many other mighty ones from both Ocean State and War State came forward to sound the bell, earning themselves tokens. Many were awed seeing the many mighty ones make their moves. Those foreigners seemed to be wrestling with each other without actually fighting. The clash of titans seemed to have taken place before the forum even began.
At that moment, mighty ones from Zhisheng Cliffs of Yu State arrived as well. Another came up to sound the bell when the Noble Plane students came out.
Ye Futian, who was among the crowd, lit up as he saw the person who walked up—Qin Zhong of Zhisheng Cliffs.
Other than him, Ye Futian had also seen other mighty ones from Zhisheng Cliffs, such as Kong Yao. That old man showed up as well.
Qin Zhong had already become a sage, but he still wanted to see what level had his power of rules reached, and so he showed up before the Law Bell.
He gathered the power of rules and launched a punch at the bell.
Dong. Terrifying sound waves threatened to rupture the eardrums of all within earshot. Some even hallucinated, feeling as if their bodies were being torn apart.
Four images lit up in extremely dazzling lights on the Law Bell.
“Despite being a sage, it is still an incredibly difficult feat to conjure four images,” many said to themselves silently. The images on their bell were not used for testing the strength of the power of rules but their level. For instance, Ye Futian’s time-freeze rules were apparently of a higher level than the most basic rules of the five elements. Having more images meant that the might of the power of rules developed was of a higher level.
“Aren’t you going to try it out?” Qin Zhong turned his eyes to look at one corner in the crowd. Many followed his gaze and found Ye Futian’s party standing where Qin Zhong’s eyes were focused.
It was apparent that Qin Zhong noticed Ye Futian’s arrival. There was no way Qin Zhong would have been able to forget the supreme genius who had beaten him in the Barren State. That battle left a deep impression on him. The memories were so fresh that it felt as if it all happened the day before.
After being defeated in that battle, Qin Zhong returned to Zhisheng Cliffs to reflect and train in seclusion. He gained a new understanding and broke into the Sage Plane after spending half a year seriously pondering. Even so, he had not forgotten that battle. It was one thought he held on to obsessively.
Liu Zong, Zhou Ziyi, and the others turned their eyes to Ye Futian as well. The nine students of Chess Saint all did the same. Ye Futian lifted his head and looked at Qin Zhong before turning to look at Kong Yao in the crowd. Ye Futian held no enmity to Qin Zhong of Zhisheng Cliffs but he hated Kong Yao to the bone.
Kong Yao glared at Ye Futian with equally cold and extremely sharp eyes. That genius of the Barren State had Sage Chunyang covering for him. Even the sage even sacrificed his life to call upon Emperor Xia just so to keep Ye Futian alive and have him take the place of Palace Lord of the Holy Zhi Palace.
He wanted to kill Ye Futian very badly to tie up loose ends. However, the decree of Emperor Xia meant that he would dare to move against Ye Futian haphazardly as even he did not have the right to see the emperor. Emperor Xia was an emperor of humanity like no other. His words held such weight and power that no one throughout all nine states dared defy him. It was said that Emperor Xia was at a level capable of feats threatening the heavens and the earth.
“Palace Lord Ye, you have broken the Celestial Dragon Chess Game before. Why don’t you demonstrate a bit of what you’re capable of? It is not an opportunity that is easy to come by, after all,” Liu Zong said with a smile.
Many looked puzzled at those words. That young man is Palace Lord Ye Futian who came all the way here from the Holy Zhi Palace of the Barren State?
Everyone in Huatian City had heard of the name of the Noble Plane Palace Lord of the Barren State by now; a young man who had broken the Celestial Dragon Chess Game left behind by the Chess Saint. If it had not been for Liu Zong, he might have been the one to earn the Chess Saint’s lineage.
“I’ve been invited here by Xihua Sacred Mountain to bring the young geniuses of the Barren State to participate in the Nine State Forum. As for the bell, you may continue without me,” Ye Futian said. He was now the Palace Lord of the Holy Zhi Palace. With his every move representing the palace, he naturally had to be careful of the way he spoke and acted. The Law Bell was for the Noble Plane students who were to participate in the forum. It would have been improper if he went to show off before the others at a place like this even though all those here hailed from sacred grounds all over the nine states.
“You’re planning to bring people of the Barren State to participate in the Nine State Forum?” Zhou Ziyi’s eyes were set on Ye Futian in an amused manner. She then turned to look at those around Ye Futian. She was about to participate in the forum this time as well. So the ones from Barren State are going to join the fun? In that case, I guess there is a possibility I will end up facing them. If things turn out that way, it will be interesting.
Ye Futian turned to look at her. That woman seemed to still be holding a grudge against him. He looked at Zhou Ziyi rather pitifully. He thought her to be rather pathetic. It would have been better if she was not of any worth, yet she had to be a princess of the sacred dynasty, which meant that someone would have to find her useful.
Zhou Ziyi saw Ye Futian’s brow furrow slightly. What is this guy trying to say?
Ye Futian turned his eyes around without replying to Zhou Ziyi, deeming her not worthy of his time.
“Li Futu, you’re up for it?” Ye Futian said to Li Futu who was standing right by his side. While Li Futu’s capabilities and talents were all incredibly powerful, his power of rules was still far from mature. While Ye Futian had no worries about him even having what it took to participate in the forum or otherwise, if Li Futu had the ability to get a token himself remained to be proven.
“Okay.” Li Futu walked up and stood before the bell. Many eyes fell onto him, wanting to see how good genius-level nobles from the Barren State were.
The light of the Divine Bird glittered and Li Futu made a fist lightly. Powerful flames washed all over his body in an instant. The bird cried in the sky before shooting down like a bolt of lightning, hitting the Law Bell. A thin, stifling ting was heard. Li Futu’s fists clenched without him realizing as he watched the scene before him unfold. He was not even able to sound the bell.
Ye Futian looked just as troubled. Such a soft ting was truly no different from not making any sound at all. The Law Bell was something that only matured powers of rules were able to sound. It was apparent that even Li Futu, the most exceptional proud son of the Alchemy City regions, was incapable of such a feat before he developed matured rules.
Many wore peculiar looks on their faces. The Barren State was still Barren State. They were still the weakest. All of the first ones who came up from the other states had been able to sound the bell; all but the Barren State.
“The way I see it, it’s still better for you to do it yourself,” Zhou Ziyi looked at Ye Futian and said.
“Me? I’m afraid it’d be too much for you,” Ye Futian said, smirking. It was a move that startled many present. That fellow actually made the princess of the sacred dynasty the butt of his joke?
Zhou Ziyi frowned coldly as she glanced at Ye Futian. Too much for me? What insolence.
“Go get the Barren State’s right of entry for the forum, will you?” Ye Futian said in a muffled voice to Yu Sheng and the others who were right beside him. They nodded briskly and walked to the bottom of the stairs.
Many watched with peculiar faces at the scene of several people walking out at the same time. All from the Barren State are trying out at the same time?
“Who’s up first?” Xu Que asked in a rather lazy tone.
“Have it your way,” Ye Wuchen said as he walked up a few steps. Sword aura whooshed about in the air in an instant. He pointed with his finger and thousands of sword wills gushed in the direction where his pointed, hitting the Law Bell.
Dong! A crisp clear sound flowed with the sword will, reverberating throughout the place.
“Well, let’s do it together then,” Zui Qianchou smiled and said, walking up like Ye Wuchen did before the sound of the bell subsided.
Dong. Another trembling sound of the bell was heard, as if there was a torrent of sword aura gushing about.
Xu Que shrugged and sword aura coursed throughout his body. He opened his eyes all of a sudden, throwing his arm out sending thousands of killing sword will through the air. The Law Bell sounded three times. It echoes reverberated throughout the surroundings.
Zhou Ziyi looked on with incredibly amused eyes, staring at that ancient bell that kept being rung!