"Master, Master! Look what we found by the river!"
I looked up to see Manami and Lian Li proudly holding two sacks in their hands.
"Don't tell me…"
According to Lian Li, it seems like it was another 'heaven sent gift' for my mercy towards the group of bandits the other day.
This is definitely fishy no matter how I look at it, but seeing the sparkling eyes of Lian Li and the serene smile of Manami side by side, I just waved the uneasy feeling away while being glad that the two seemed to be more amiable to each other now.
Maybe they had a girls' pillow talk while I was asleep and resolved their differences? I guess I should just be glad that they are getting along now.
We had a long day of travelling ahead of us so I told the girls to pack up quickly.
Our journey in the morning was thankfully uneventful, I half expected a group of bandits to come rob us again. Did the Earthen Plane always have this many bandits?
The girls on the other hand became really active, both of them seemingly trying to get my attention for some reason.
Lian Li would ask if my legs ached from the walk and offer to massage my feet for me. I rejected of course, since I wanted to cover as much ground as we could today, I did tell her I might consider it tonight though.
Manami would serve me tea from a flask that I had no idea when she prepared beforehand, seemingly appearing out from under her sleeves whenever I'm not looking.
The tea was exquisite and I told her so which made her beam at me, probably proud of her tea making skills.
Tea is the water of life to us Practitioners after all.
Sometimes they would talk to each other, probably trying to get to know each other better. I tried not to eavesdrop on them them since it's girl talk and a gentleman shouldn't involve himself in a lady's private matters.
As we stopped for our afternoon break, I spotted something that I didn't think I would find here.
"Oh my, a Phoenix Ember? I never thought I would see one up close," Manami mused, noticing the same flower I had under a tree.
Phoenix Ember? Oh right, those were what they were known as in the Earthen Plane. I almost said the name they were called in the Spiritual Plane: Practitioner Droppings.
You see, these flowers bloom in areas of high concentration of Pure Elemental quarks. Usually this meant around areas with many Practitioners gathered in a single place or a location with an abnormal concentration of Pure Elemental quarks.
Our Heaven Sect probably sees one or two blooming every year within our Sect grounds. It is quite rare and valuable here in the Earthen Plane since it can be used to make quite a number of cultivation pills.
A single petal on the flower could reach around two thousand gold at least, that's enough money for a normal mortal to live in luxury for the rest of their lives with enough left over for their grandchildren too. Even the current me only had enough money to buy two petals at most.
A normal loaf of bread would probably cost around one copper while a night stay at the best inn in Jin city is around two silvers. A hundred copper would make up one silver while a hundred silvers will make up one gold. You can tell how incredibly valuable the flower is when it costs the same as twenty million loaves of bread.
If you ate a loaf of bread everyday, you would have enough for more than fifty-four thousand years. That's a lot of bread.
Practitioners would usually keep the flower for themselves than to sell it, which drives the price even higher.
But in the Spiritual Plane and beyond where almost every other Tom, Dick and Harry are Practitioners, they are treated almost like weed.
Useful, sure, but they grow back so fast that people are paid to remove them instead of the other way around.
Lian Li clapped her hands together, "To be able to find such a legendary flower by the roadside, Master truly is someone blessed by heaven!"
This girl really believes I'm some blessed child of heaven huh? You're the one that is truly blessed by the heavens you know? You Divine Lightning cheater.
But that brings the question of why this flower would bloom here? On the side of this random road under this tree? As far as I know, there wasn't a Sect around here that could be comparable to Heaven Sect in size.
My senses are also telling me that there wasn't an abnormal amount of Pure Elemental quark in the air either.
That leaves the possibility of a Dark Sect making their base around here.
Dark Sects are just basically cultists who pursue all sorts of immoral cultivation techniques to bolster their powers, exactly the ones the Lian Li of my previous life hunted to oblivion.
This place would make sense for them to set up a base as well, far enough from Jin city to not bring unwanted attention while still being near enough that they could kill or capture anyone going to and from the city.
Crap, maybe they were the actual ones who end up destroying the world?
It's highly possible that whatever forbidden arts they were practicing might have a side effect of bathing the world in Divine Lightning.
Especially considering that whatever they were doing caused a Phoenix Ember to bloom here of all places, it is definitely not something insignificant.
I guess I'll have to do some cleansing.
I can't bring the girls along since I don't want my cute disciples to see me killing these scoundrels, so I just picked the flower and announced we were camping here for the day, instructing them on their next stages of cultivation until nightfall.
Turns out Manami was quite the genius herself too. Aside from Space, she even has Astral at Intermediate Tier. Her best was Fire at Advanced while the other three common elements were at Basic tier. No wonder she was the village guardian.
Before we retired for the night, Lian Li insisted I let her massage my feet. I had wanted to turn in early so I could sneak out later to find the Dark Sect but seeing her tearful expression made me give in.
I had to admit her hands felt really good.
For some reason I felt that Lian Li was more blissful than I was.
I had to remind her that it was getting late before she finally stopped fondling my legs.
Well, time for me to exterminate some pesky Dark Sects!
Hmm? You're wondering why it seemed like I was more than eager to get rid of these Dark Sects?
Aside from the fact that everyone benefits from their extermination, I definitely do not want them going around ruining this Plane with whatever dark schemes they have and destroy my dream of an easy life.
Do you know how many times I was called out of my Sect to fix a problem these Dark Sects caused?
Oh, some fanatics managed to summon an ancient demon that's burning down villages, get Master Lin here to defeat it. Oh, a Dark Sect is performing a sacrificial ritual, get Master Lin to go break them up. Hey, another group of cultists are going around pillaging and raping in the name of their dark lord, get Master Lin to do something about it.
Sure the pay was good, but why is it always me? Just because no one was as strong as I was meant that I had to be sent alone. Solo trips gets lonely you know? Being a prodigy has its downsides too apparently.
It was especially irritating back then since I was always pulled out of my cultivation period which made me even more irritable. I admit to causing more damage than necessary sometimes…
Was that why some people feared me? Nah can't be, I'm such a nice person, right?
Oh well, after I've trained my cute disciples to be strong enough in the future, I wouldn't mind taking them along for the scenic road trips while I exterminate people like these at the side.
I should really stop procrastinating on teaching my disciples about the killing thing…
But the Earthen Plane is so peaceful you know? I don't really want them to cross that bridge this early, they should maintain their innocence for as long as they can.
Hmm? What about the bandits we've met?
I've seen some shit back in those two Planes I can tell you that. Those bandits got nothing on the monstrosities in those places.
It's like comparing cute, cuddly puppies to giant, black, oozing, slimy, multi-legged, hundred-eyed tentacle monsters summoned from the depths of the abyss. I am not joking about the tentacle monster.
Now, where could this Dark Sect be hiding?