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Chapter 538 - 538: Orders From The Central State, Southeastern Cultivator Union
After Si Wuxie's clone disappeared, Ning Fan stood on the reef of the South Sea for quite some time.
Two graceful words had been carved on the huge reef beside him which were of the small plum blossom calligraphy style. They should be words that Si Wuxie had carved while she was waiting for Ning Fan.
These two words which Si Wuxie had left behind expressed her intention of bidding farewell to Ning Fan.
Unfortunately, Ning Fan stubbornly embraced her, vowing to become her tribulation. He did not give her a chance to bid farewell to him at all...
Looking at the flowing sea water, Ning Fan's eyes gradually turned deep.
The waves splas.h.i.+ng on the sh.o.r.es had their ebbs and flows. At the end of the day, they would still return to the vast ocean.
She has left... At the end of the day, she still belongs to the Kunlun Jade Pool.
"Even after fifty years have pa.s.sed, I still feel a bit reluctant..."
Ning Fan gently sighed.
He remembered the promise he made to Si Wuxie. Fifty years later, he would head to the Ancient Heavenly Court to search for the Undying Tree. For now, he must return to Seven Apricot City.
Just as he was about to leave, a message-transmitting flying sword suddenly appeared in the sky, flying toward him by following his qi.
Ning Fan waved with his open palm, catching the flying sword in his hand and broke it as soon as he caught it.
A voice immediately echoed into Ning Fan's ears. It was Xu Qiuling's voice.
"If you've successfully attained the Void Inquiry Stage, return as soon as possible. There are guests in Seven Apricot City – the Qiu and Han Couple from the Southeastern Cultivator Union."
Ten years had pa.s.sed. Xu Qiuling had already broken through to the Mid Divine Transformation Realm and had the ability to send out message-transmitting flying swords.
Zhi He, Lan Mei, Bai Lu and the others had also reached the Gold Core Realm. Even Bai Su had already advanced to the Harmonious Spirit Realm.
Yue Lingkong, on the other hand, had a huge improvement in her magic power with the help of the moonlight gemstone that Ning Fan had given to her. However, she was still far from advancing to the Void Pierce Stage. That moonlight gemstone was none other than the gemstone Ning Fan obtained from the auction in the Mist Horn Clan in the past.
After hearing Xu Qiuling's voice, Ning Fan's face looked as if he was deep in thought.
Some guests had visited Seven Apricot City. They were the Qiu and Han Couple, members of the Southeastern Cultivator Union of the Rain World.
One hundred plus cultivation countries including Yue Country were all located at the southeast continent of the Rain World. Before the rise of Seven Apricot City, the largest force on the continent was none other than the Southeastern Cultivator Union.
It was a union of rogue cultivators led by the Qu and Han Couple who were husband and wife.
The husband, Yang Qiu, was a Void Pierce Stage sword cultivator whereas the wife, Sun Han, was a Void Inquiry Stage zither cultivator.
Countless thoughts ran across Ning Fan's mind. However, he could not figure out what brought them to Seven Apricot City.
The only thing about the Southeastern Cultivator Union that concerned him was Yun Ruowei. When he parted ways with her in Great Jin in the past, she said that she wanted to leave the Rain Palace and join the Southeastern Cultivator Union.
"Yun Ruowei... In Great Jin, I've seen Ning Qian and Yun Tianjue in her dreams... From what I heard the reason why she was able to join the Rain Palace despite her demon body was because of Yun Tianjue's recommendation..."
"If I am not mistaken, the winged demon in her dream, Ning Qian, is my mother... Yun Tianjue has lost his memories and he can't remember who Ning Qian is. That's why I can't ascertain his relations.h.i.+p with Ning Qian. Yun Ruowei, however, must know it. With her help, I might be able to find Ning Qian..."
"Ning Qian... My mother... I was born an orphan. If I can find my mother, it'll really put me at a loss of what to do..."
"Dong Xu once helped me perform divination on my mother in the past and discovered that she is still alive. She's still in the Rain World... As a son, I have to find her whereabouts in order to put my mind at rest..."
Ning Fan shook his head and smiled. Speaking of Old Ancestor Dong Xu, he once promised to help him achieve the Void Refinement Realm.
Ten years have already pa.s.sed. I guess he is probably already fully prepared for that. If I have time, I'll help him advance to the Void Refinement Realm in the Sovereign's Tomb.
With Ning Fan's current understanding of the 'void', it should not be difficult for him to aid Dong Xu in achieving that breakthrough.
As soon as Ning Fan turned around, his body transformed into a ray of travelling light and returned to Yue Country.
The Flying Snow Palace of the western part of Seven Apricot City was a newly-built palace meant for receiving visitors.
In the Flying Snow Palace, Su Yan, Yue Lingkong, Ming Que, Xu Qiuling and the other women were sitting on the main seats, welcoming their guests.
On the guest's side, there was a man in green robes and a lady in pink robes. Forty plus Nascent Soul Realm cultivators and six Divine Transformation Realm experts also stood behind them in attendance.
That pink-robed lady was called Sun Han. She looked like she was in her late twenties. She was not a peerless beauty but she looked really prim and proper.
That green-robed man was called Yang Qiu. He spoke in a rather refined and gentle manner. Unfortunately, there were a few scars on his face which made him look like a rough bandit.
The two of them were the leaders of the Southeastern Cultivator Union – the Han and Qiu Couple.
As for the cultivators who were standing behind them, all of them were rogue cultivators they had brought with them from the union.
Su Yan was once the leader of a clan while Yue Lingkong was once the master of a sect. Therefore, it was an easy task for them to receive their guests.
When the Qiu and Han Couple arrived at Seven Apricot City, they never mentioned anything about the intention of their visit. They only said that they would tell them about it after Ning Fan returns.
"What exactly is the intention of the members of the Southeast Cultivator Union to have come to Seven Apricot City?" Yue Lingkong asked Su Yan via telepathy.
"I have no idea. However, I heard that the Qiu and Han Couple are rogue cultivators that have actually already joined the Rain Palace. They even have the ident.i.ties of feudal ranking elders of the Rain Palace and have always helped the Rain Sovereign pa.s.s secret orders. Perhaps the reason why they came is because they want to convey a secret message to Ning Fan..." Su Yan guessed.
At the rooftop outside the Flying Snow Palace, a small black sable was yawning lazily while guarding Seven Apricot City. It seemed like she was being wary of the Qiu and Han Couple in case they bore malice toward the city.
All of a sudden, a ray of light flew into the city.
The little sable lazily raised her head and took a glimpse at the travelling light. Then, she snorted lightly and turned around to leave.
"Humph. That stinky man is finally back. It seems like he has successfully attained the Void Inquiry Stage. His luck is quite good..."
That travelling light was openly releasing Void Inquiry Stage aura force. It descended outside the Flying Snow Palace and turned into a young man in white robes. It was Ning Fan.
He slowly walked into the Flying Snow Palace. When the women in the palace sensed the Void Inquiry Stage aura force from Ning Fan, their faces were filled with joy. Clearly, Ning Fan had successfully achieved the Void Inquiry Stage.
The Qiu and Han Couple were a bit stunned upon seeing Ning Fan enter the Flying Snow Palace. The two of them immediately rose to their feet. The man cupped his fists while the lady curtsied. Together, they said, "The Qiu and Han Couple from the Fallen Autumn Country greet the White-Robed Marquis!"
"Fellow daoists are being too polite. So what brought the two of you to visit my Seven Apricot City?" Ning Fan cupped his fists toward both of them and went to the main seat of the palace. His eyes unintentionally glimpsed at the group of Nascent Soul Realm and Divine Transformation Realm cultivators behind them.
When he saw no sign of Yun Ruowei among those cultivators, he could not help but feel slightly dispirited.
"The reason why we headed to Seven Apricot City is to pa.s.s the Rain Sovereign's imperial order to you. White-Robed Marquis, please have a look at this jade slip."
Yang Qiu took out a jade box which contained a golden jade slip. When he flicked his finger, the jade box flew toward Ning Fan.
Ning Fan took out the golden jade slip and inserted his spirit sense into it. There was only one order from the Rain Sovereign inside the jade slip. After Ning Fan had read it, it instantly burned itself without any flames and disintegrated into ashes.
The Rain Sovereign's order was simple. He was hoping that Ning Fan could head to the Rain Palace in the
Central State1 as soon as possible as he had something to discuss with him.
The reason why the Rain Sovereign made Ning Fan as a revered elder of the Rain Palace and even appointed him as the palace lord of the Scarlet Heaven Palace eventually was solely because Ning Fan's 'Indestructible Fire Body' was of great use to him. He needed Ning Fan's help to retrieve something from an abyss of flames.
He found that it was now about time to borrow Ning Fan's power.
A formation technique had been set up on the golden jade slip that would make it disintegrate after it was read once. Doubtlessly, the Qiu and Han Couple completely had no idea of its contents.
Since the Rain Sovereign pa.s.sed this message to Ning Fan in such a secretive manner, what he was up to did not seem to be something small. Without a doubt, the thing he wanted Ning Fan to get must be something extraordinary.
"Have Fellow Daoist read the secret order?" Yang Qiu asked with a faint smile.
"Mm. I've already received the order and I'll head to the Central State within the next few days."
"Hehe. It's good then. In this case, the two of us will now excuse ourselves."
"Wait a minute. I wish to ask about someone from the two of you."
"Oh? Who does White-Robed Marquis want to know about?"
"I have a friend called Yun Ruowei. I heard that she has joined the Southeastern Cultivator Union. May I know where she is currently?"
"Yun Ruowei?" Yang Qiu was rather surprised and stared at Ning Fan.
"I've long heard that White-Robed Marquis is a genuine and sentimental man with an unconventional and frivolous bearing and has countless beauties. When I personally met you today, it seems that the rumors are true... Hehe. Yun Ruowei is indeed within my Southeastern Cultivator Union. However, she has a quite significant background. She is the blood younger sister of the White-Robed Sword G.o.d. It's better for White-Robed Marquis to not mess with that lady in order to avoid getting yourself into big trouble..."
It was already extremely polite of Yang Qiu to describe Ning Fan as a frivolous man. After all, Ning Fan's fame in the Rain World was all due to his notoriety and infamy.
Well, all of it was built on the foundation of countless corpses and the human cauldrons he had plucked.
When Yang Qiu came to Seven Apricot City today and saw that Ning Fan had countless wives and concubines, he was naturally even more convinced that Ning Fan was a l.u.s.tful man.
However, it was none of his business how Ning Fan behaved. When Ning Fan asked him about Yun Ruowei, he merely thought that Ning Fan had his eye on her. That was why he gave him a warning out of kindness.
Ning Fan shook his head helplessly. He did not expect that his name would actually be ruined to a point where just by talking about women, others would think that he was hatching a sinister plan in his mind...
"Rest a.s.sured, Fellow Daoist Yang. Yun Ruowei and I already knew each other. We have a friendly relations.h.i.+p. The reason why I'm looking for her is because I have some questions that I need to ask her in person. I certainly don't harbor any malicious intentions..."
"Hehe. I see. It seems like I've misunderstood you... Since Fellow Daoist only wants to ask her some questions, I naturally can tell you where she is. However, I have one condition..."
"Oh? What condition does Fellow Daoist Yang have?" Ning Fan already figured out what Yang Qiu wanted to ask after seeing a soaring battle intent in Yang Qiu's eyes that was itching for a try.
"I'd like to have a fight with White-Robed Marquis!" Yang Qiu's eyes flashed with battle intent. Then, he continued, "After the battle of the one hundred sects in the Endless Sea, White-Robed Marquis has established a great name. I've admired you for a long time now. From what I gathered in that battle, Marquis White Robe was already famous far and wide despite only being a Half-Step Void Refinement Realm cultivator. And during the great a.s.sembly in Song Country, Fellow Daoist fought the vice sect master of the Serene Heaven Palace, Fang Si, and came out on top. At that time, you were only at the Void Glimpse Stage... Today, judging from your qi, you should have already broken through to the Void Inquiry Stage. I suppose your strength has increased again... Therefore, I wish to have a chance to fight you!"
It was impossible to tell that Yang Qiu, someone who spoke in a gentle and refined manner, was actually a belligerent person.
So that was why there were scars on his face. Without a doubt, he must have gotten them while fighting others...
"As long as White-Robed Marquis is willing to exchange a single move with me, I will tell you where Yun Ruowei is, no matter if I win or lose in the end!"
Upon hearing Yang Qiu's intention of fighting Ning Fan, worries filled the faces of Xu Qiuling and the others.
"Big Brother, you have just broken through to the Void Inquiry Stage and your cultivation base is still unstable. It's inappropriate for you to engage in a fight..."
"It doesn't matter. I have captured a few blind human cauldrons in the South Gazing Sea. After plucking them, my cultivation base has already stabilized. I completely have no problem engaging in a battle now."
Ning Fan gave his women a confident smile, hinting to them that they could set their minds at ease.
Then, he took a step forward and said to Yang Qiu, "Where does Fellow Daoist Yang want to fight? When Void Refinement Realm experts like us fight, the fluctuations of power from it won't be small."
"Hehe. Fellow Daoist can follow me into this heavenly dwelling. We'll fight inside it."
Yang Qiu stroked his jade thumb ring and a green light portal immediately emerged before him. Without hesitation, he took a step into the portal.
Ning Fan spread out his spirit sense to inspect the portal. After making sure that there was nothing strange within the portal, he also went inside.
He was not worried about Yang Qiu trying to harm him as a mere heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce could not trap him at all.
"*Sigh* According to rumors, Yang Qiu is incredibly strong. Only a few among the Void Pierce Stage experts are his match... Little Cuc.u.mber has just attained the Void Inquiry Stage. Nothing bad is going to happen, right..." Yue Lingkong muttered with a concerned tone.
Of course, she was not worried about Ning Fan losing the fight. Instead, she was worried that Ning Fan might not have a proper grasp of his power yet as he had just reached the Void Inquiry Stage. Without a doubt, he certainly could not show mercy and must go all-out when fighting someone like Yang Qiu. However, if he uses too much of his power and completely eradicates Yang Qiu, then he will just bring trouble to himself for nothing...
"*chuckle* Little Sister Yue Er, you don't have to worry. Even though my husband is strong, White-Robed Marquis isn't weak either. Even if he loses to my husband, it won't be very ugly. At most, he will get some light injuries..."
Sun Han chuckled and tried to console Yue Lingkong. The words she spoke showed her infinite confidence for Yang Qiu's victory.
'Fallen Leaf Sword' Yang Qiu. He became famous across the Rain World by relying on his Fallen Leaf Sword Style. All Absolute Void Stage experts even dreaded him a lot.
Sun Yan naturally did not think that her husband would lose to Ning Fan who had just recently reached the Void Inquiry Stage even though his notorious name had been around for quite a while.
As soon as Sun Han's voice fell, the Flying Snow Palace suddenly trembled with a deafening sound of explosion blasting the area. The heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce was shattered to pieces!
Yang Qiu was completely bathed in blood with tattered robes. He appeared in the Flying Snow Palace in a panicked state. His face filled with intense terror. Even though he was not grievously injured, he looked extremely battered and worn-out!
Terrifying! It was too terrifying! After both he and Ning Fan entered the heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce, he displayed his Fallen Leaf Style Sword Technique. However, just as he used that technique, Ning Fan instantly countered it using the Myriad Sword Style, destroying his attacks and even cutting the heavenly dwelling magic treasure into pieces...
Ning Fan, on the other hand, appeared in the Flying Snow Palace with the Separation Slayer Sword in his hand. Not even one corner of his sleeve was wrinkled.
Those with discerning eyes could tell that Ning Fan had won the fight while Yang Qiu had lost...
Sun Han was so shocked that her jaw dropped. It had only been six to seven breaths from the time they entered the heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce until Yang Qiu came out defeated with the heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce broken.
She was certain that her husband would win in the start. However, her husband whom she was proud of had lost to Ning Fan in just a few breaths!
How was this possible?! This was literally impossible! Her husband was a dignified expert whom even Absolute Void Stage cultivators would have to treat with respect!
"*Cough*... Your great reputation is truly genuine. White-Robed Marquis' name is widely known across the Rain Word. I've been admiring you for a long time. However, I didn't expect that you would be so strong... I'm afraid that even if you face an Absolute Void Stage expert instead, you can still put up a fight against them." Yang Qiu smiled bitterly. If he had known that Ning Fan was so powerful, he definitely would not ask to be humiliated by asking for a fight with him.
"I'm sorry... I've just broken through to the Void Inquiry Stage and I'm still not used to controlling my current power..." Ning Fan also smiled wryly.
When they entered the heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce, the first move that Yang Qiu used was the Fallen Leaf Style Sword Technique.
Ning Fan saw that the technique was extremely powerful as it was nearly comparable to an Absolute Void Stage attack. Thus, he did not dare to belittle it. However, since he did not have a deep grudge against Yang Qiu, he certainly would not display the Void Ignition Technique to kill him.
His original idea was to display the Myriad Sword Style Sword Technique to win against Yang Qiu by slightly overpowering him and save him some face.
However, he miscalculated. The Myriad Sword Style was a Void Fragmentation Realm sword technique in the first place. As Ning Fan's magic power increased, the power of his sword technique became even more terrifying and it almost killed Yang Qiu.
If it was not because Ning Fan commanded the sword light to divert at a critical moment which destroyed the heavenly dwelling s.p.a.ce, perhaps Yang Qiu would have already died under his Myriad Sword Style...
It seemed like Ning Fan would need some time to get accustomed to his Void Inquiry Stage magic power...
"Fellow Daoist's technique is truly frightening. I'm really ashamed of my inferiority... *Sigh* I've met countless people but it's rare for me to meet someone like Fellow Daoist. I'm afraid that even White-Robed Sword G.o.d might not necessarily be as strong as you when he was young. I'm truly impressed... Since Fellow Daoist wants to know where Yun Ruowei is, I'll tell you the truth. Actually, Yun Ruowei was supposed to follow us to Seven Apricot City. However, she suddenly said that she wanted to find a blue jade pendant and went to another place..." Yang Qiu's tone was unusually polite. Well, Ning Fan had really struck fear into him during their exchange earlier.
"A blue jade pendant? I wonder what that is... Where did she go?" Ning Fan felt curious.
"She is in Hai Ning of Wu Country... *Cough* I'm sorry. Wu Country has already been integrated into Yue Country now. It should be called Hai Ning of Yue Country."
"Hai Ning? Could it be that she went to the Ning Family? Why...?" A strange feeling rose within Ning Fan' heart.
He had some guesses in his mind but he could not be sure.
Perhaps I should drop by the Ning Family before heading to the Central State...
Translated by Tommy, edited by RoelCentral State is previously translated as Middle State.