Chapter 80: The Celestial Realm
When Yi Ping regained his conscious, he felt excruciating pain all over his body.
He tried to move his body and slowly opened his eyes.
When he opened his eyes, he was immediately dazed by the many beautiful maidens that were surrounding him!
Yixian smiled gently at him, “We have been calling you for ages but you didn’t seem to hear.”
She paused for a while to dry her tears before saying, “We thought that you have fallen into a coma…we are so worried…”
Yi Ping muttered, “Xian’Er, you are here. I am so glad. Is…everyone alright? Everyone has made it? Did we succeed?”
Lie Qing laughed softly as she winked at him, “Yes, we have all made it! We are now in the Celestial Realm now!”
Youxue, Lingfeng, Youxue and Shen Xingyue were nodding at him with eager expressions as they exclaimed together, “That’s right!”
Lie Qing said, “This place is so beautiful. There are mountains everywhere. I have never seen anything as beautiful as this.”
Lingfeng smiled alluringly, “There are only mountains in the Celestial Realm…”
Lele was trying to interrupt amidst the jovial cries, “So this is the Celestial Realm, huh? Yi Ping, what do think we should go next? Should we go into the town and say hello to the other Celestials?”
Everyone except for Lingfeng was bewildered as they looked curiously at Lele.
Even Yi Ping was startled as he tried to stand up for a better view at his surroundings.
It was because everyone could tell that they were on a grassy mountain slope surrounded by majestic mountains everywhere.
Yujian and Meijian immediately said, “Master, let us help you!”
Yi Ping smiled at them, “I am alright. Are you much better now?”
Yujian pursed her lips, “I am alright…”
Meijian smiled sweetly, “Don’t worry…”
Yi Ping nodded as he looked at his surroundings keenly.
Indeed, they were standing on a mountain platform. There were mountains everywhere. They were standing on a high point and could see hundreds of visible misty mountains and dozens of rainbows could be seen in all directions! The view was extremely breathtaking.
Yi Ping was silent. It was because other than mountains, waterfalls, clouds, flowers, trees and grasses; there were nothing else!
He thought, “Where is the town?”
He turned to look at Lingfeng and Lele for answers and he decided to ask something dumb, “Is this the Celestial Realm? There is a town in this place?”
Lingfeng smiled at him alluringly, “Indeed, this is the Celestial Realm. Here, there are no oceans, only endless mountains and oceans of clouds. As for towns, yes there are indeed towns in this place. But as for why Lele knows, I really do not know.”
Yi Ping turned to look at Lele, “There is a town nearby? Why didn’t I see it?”
Lele stroked her long hair gently as she smiled mysteriously, “It is just a lucky guess. No matter how desolate a place is as long as there are people, they are bound to group themselves into clans and organizations.”
Yi Ping was dumbfounded as he slowly said, “Even though there may be towns in the Celestial Realm but we are in the middle of nowhere. Finding a town will be difficult. First, we need a plan on our next destination.”
The maidens nodded as they looked at one another quietly.
Yi Ping asked Lingfeng, “What will our next move be first?”
Lingfeng sighed softly, “First, we have to recuperate first. Next, we have to find out our next location but it won’t be easy. The Celestial Realm is an infinite realm and there are places that even the Ancient Celestials did not explore yet. Next, we must find the Universal Old Man and then determine the next appearance of the Stellar Sanctuary. Also, we must avoid the settlements.”
Lele asked curiously, “Why? We should pay the Celestials here a visit and even learn from them!”
Lingfeng sighed softly, “The Celestial Realm is divided into many domains. There are many celestial clans here and the rivalries between the clans are even more intense than the Mortal Realm. If a fight breaks out between us, we may not be able to win against them. Don’t forget that they are celestial practitioners that have already ascended and we have not. Moreover, we will risk hurting the innocent bystanders.”
Yunzi asked curiously, “Innocent bystanders? There are mortals here?”
Youxue asked too, “There are mortals in the celestial realm?”
Lingfeng sighed softly, “There are many mortals but I wouldn’t call some of them as mere mortals. Many of them are Dark Celestials and they feed on their kind here so that they could retain their youthful appearances forever.”
All of a sudden, Yixian, Lie Qing, Lele, Youxue and Lingfeng turned around at the same time as they scanned at their surroundings keenly!
To the others, they could see no one approaching but Yi Ping knew that for the five of them to be alarmed at the same thing would only mean one thing; they had detected the presence of someone!
Yixian was the first one to speak, “A group of five is approaching us rapidly. From their swiftness movement, they are all super exponents! Be wary!”
Lingfeng looked anxious as she said, “Be vigilant! They may not be friendlies and would seek to exterminate us.”
Yunzi asked, “They would kill us? Why?”
Lingfeng explained solemnly, “If an ascending Celestial were to land in a hostile domain, they would either be quickly recruited or exterminated. The Celestials here see everyone as a rival.”
Yi Ping clenched his fists as he trembled. He knew that these nine maidens had all sustained internal injuries and like him, was in no state to fight back against the well prepared and powerful celestials here.
Lele had already stepped forward as she winked at Shen Xingyue, “It seems that you are in terrible need of a rest. Why don’t you recuperate first?”
Shen Xingyue smiled weakly, “As though you are faring better than me? Your internal injuries aren’t light either. I am sure that you are pretending otherwise.”
Lele swung her long black scythe and her Divine Echo Divine Sword before saying coolly, “At least I am much better than you.”
Lie Qing smiled with amusement at their antics as she sighed exasperatingly to herself, “Sometimes I can’t if their rivalries are real or just mocks.”
She took out the Perpetual Darkness Divine Sword and the White Phoenix Divine Sword at the same time. She took a longing look at the White Phoenix Divine Sword before tossing it to Yi Ping, “Ping’Er, take the White Phoenix Divine Sword back. You are going to need it for your personal protection in the future.”
Yi Ping caught hold of the White Phoenix before saying, “Qing’Er, you don’t need your sword?”
Lie Qing smiled mesmerizingly, “I am no longer the Luminous Star that you have known in the past. Maybe I am never her in the first place. Over the years, I have grown attached to the Perpetual Darkness and moreover, the White Phoenix regards you as the true master now.”
Yi Ping sighed as he stared blankly at the White Phoenix, “What is Luminous Star without the White Phoenix?”
Lie Qing looked at him coyly, “I am always your Qing’Er. Destiny arranges for Sister Xian’Er to give you the White Phoenix on my behalf. It shows that I have never forgotten about you. But now, this White Phoenix belongs to you.”
Yixian coughed weakly but she was smiling gently at Yi Ping, “Ping’Er, destiny comes and goes. The White Phoenix is reawakened because of you and has chosen you as the rightful master to wield it. This is your destiny now.”
Everyone could tell that Yixian’s internal injuries were not light but she simply refused to divulge the real extent of her injuries!
All the maidens were willing to fight for the sake of Yi Ping and for the other maidens but only Yixian, Lie Qing and Lele were still able to muster whatever little strength that they had.
It was because Yixian the Celestial Fairy had taken the blunt of the earlier Divine Calamity and had sheltered them from the worst attacks with her Divine Emerald Skill.
Lele nodded as she placed the Divine Echo in Yi Ping’s hands. “The Divine Echo has awakened because of you too. It is not a coincident that both divine swords choose to reawaken at the same time together.”
Shen Xingyue nodded, “Indeed. I have never heard of two divine swords that willingly choose the same master at the same time.”
Yi Ping gripped both the White Phoenix and the Divine Echo in his hands. Immediately there was a divine resonant from the two swords as rainbow hues glowed from within the scabbards!
Yi Ping muttered, “Divine Echo and White Phoenix…”
Lele placed her hands tenderly on his arm as she looked up at him with tender eyes, “You know why I have given you the Divine Echo in the first place…”
Yi Ping nodded but he had almost cried out, “Lele, I know. But even with two divine swords in my hands, what is the use? I should be the one protecting you and everyone!”
Yixian interrupted all of a sudden, “They are here!”
Before they had reached, their malevolent killing intent had already reached!
A group of five, four men and a maiden had suddenly jumped down from the steep slope of the mountains and were staring at them blankly. Three of them had red eyes while the maiden and another man had golden eyes!
The three men with red eyes were obviously Dark Celestials while the other two with golden eyes were ascended Celestials!
All of a sudden, their malevolent killing intent decreased drastically. The men were staring blankly at the nine maidens because their sights were so enchanting and mesmerizing. It was impossible to find so many rare beauties at the same time even in the celestial realm!
At the same time, they were also staring dazedly at the number of divine swords that were right in front of them!
Divine swords and metallic weapons were extremely rare in the celestial realm. It was because when a powerful celestial had ascended, they could not bring any metals along with them. Moreover, most of the rare divine relics in the celestial realm were in the hands of the most powerful Exalted and Ancient Celestials!
But today, they had actually witnessed so many metallic weapons!
The beautiful regal maiden with the golden eyes were gasping in astonishment as she shuddered. It was not the sights of the divine swords that had startled her as she stared at the White Phoenix Sword that was in Yi Ping’s hand!
She began to look awkwardly at Yi Ping and at Lele, Yixian and Lie Qing. This White Phoenix was a divine sword that was once wielded by her long ago and as for Lele, Yixian and Lie Qing, they were someone that she had known a long time ago!
The man with the golden eyes recovered quickly and said coldly, “We have caught sight of a rainbow omen in the horizon and immediately knows that someone has just arrived in the celestial realm just like us long ago. But we have never expected to find so many people here. So tell me, which one of you are the ascended celestial and which one of you are celestials from the other celestial clans here?”
He had immediately suspected that there was only one ascended celestial and the other nine must be from a rival celestial clan that was surveying the vicinity when they too, saw the rainbow omen.
But when he saw the eyes of the intruders, he was puzzled but he was also relieved at the same time. Celestials with golden eyes were Exalted Celestials and were dangerous. None of the intruders were in his caliber and the threat that they could pose was minimum.
So he laughed coldly, “I am Lian Longba, the lord of this domain. I don’t want to force my hand but if you are willingly to surrender unconditionally, I won’t take your lives. After all, I have always been appreciative and lenient to beauties. So what do you say?”
He took a look at the maiden next to him as he grabbed her waist, “You should know best, right?”
The beautiful regal maiden with the golden eyes began to tremble…
Lian Longba noticed her weird expressions and said coldly, “You know them?”
The beautiful regal maiden nodded slowly and said softly, “Yes, I know them.”
Yi Ping was startled. He looked at the nine maidens but they were all drawing a blank expression. It seemed that none of them knew her!
Lele responded the quickest, “Don’t start claiming friendship with us. Who are you? Since you know who we are, can you name us?”
The regal beautiful maiden seemed to hesitate for a while before she pointed at them, “You are Revelation Star (Yixian), Luminous Star (Lie Qing), Melody Star (Lele), Eclipse Heaven Goddess (Yujian), Axis Heaven Goddess (Meijian), Celestial Ocean Heavenly Maiden (Yunzi) and Endor Fairy Vixen (Youxue).”
Lele was stunned as she thought, “How did she know so many of us? But I don’t even know her. Is she someone I know when I was Melody Star?”
Lele was not the only one who was surprised. All the other maidens were equally astonished!
Lie Qing said coldly, “Just who are you? How did you guess who we are?”
Shen Xingyue looked silently at Lingfeng as she thought, “She has mind reading abilities?”
The beautiful regal maiden looked blankly at the White Phoenix in Yi Ping’s hands and at Yixian, Lele and Lie Qing while muttering, “You don’t know who I am? You have forgotten who I am? It is better that you have forgotten about me. I am ill-fated as it is…”
All of a sudden, Shen Xingyue took a trembling step backward as she called out shockingly, “She is the Stellar Heaven Fairy! Yixian, Lele, Lie Qing! She is your celestial protégé mistress in the past!”
Yixian, Lele and Lie Qing were startled as they took a step back. They had little recollections of the past and what little memories that they had was through Yi Ping’s Emptiness Translucence.
Lian Longba laughed heartily as he eyed Yixian lecherously, “So they are your protégés when you were in the Melody Palace? Good! Then they can all serve me just like you have!”
The Stellar Heaven Fairy immediately pleaded with him, “Longba, please let them off. You should do more good or heavens wrath will be incurred.”
Lian Longba slapped her hard on her face, “How dare you raise your voice at me. Why do I care about any heavens wrath? Where is the heavens wrath when I have taken you? Remember, I am the master and you are my slave. In the celestial realm, whoever possesses the might is the right and he makes all the rules!”
When Yi Ping saw that he had slapped a vulnerable maiden who dared not resist, he immediately shouted. “A man shouldn’t do that! If you want to vent your anger, fight me first!”
Lian Longba hummed coldly, “Just who are you?”
Yi Ping replied coldly, “I am Yi Ping and…”
Lian Longba interrupted coldly, “You are just a half-dead man now and you dare to raise your voice at me? You are courting your own death…”
All of a sudden, there was a forceful martial force around him as he stepped forward with an livid look, “I will show you the difference between an Exalt Celestial from the likes of you!”
The Stellar Heaven Fairy immediately said tearfully, “Let them go please. The Eclipse Heaven Goddess and the Axis Heaven Goddess are from the Ascension Sect. We cannot afford to offend them.”
Immediately, Lian Longba seemed to hesitate for a while.
The Stellar Heaven Fairy took quick bewildered glances at Yujian and Meijian. Long ago in the lower realm, the Eclipse Heaven Goddess and the Axis Heaven Goddess were two of the most powerful Exalted Celestials of the Ascension Sect and their celestial attainment was marked by their golden eyes. But now, their eyes were only crimson. What had exactly happened to them?
But when Lian Longba saw that these rare beauties and the divine swords that were almost in his hands, even the vengeful fear from the Ascension Sect did not serve as a deterrent to him anymore. He laughed, “The Ascension Sect won’t know. They are so far away and the celestial realm is so vast. When I have seized these divine swords, they will be the ones that should fear me instead!”
The other three henchmen that were with him shifted uncomfortably at the mention of the Ascension Sect.
The Ascension Sect was the most powerful celestial clan in the lower realm in the past for as long as anyone could remember. Their leadership was aggressive in trying to dominate the other celestial clans and this aggressiveness did not stop at the lower realm and was instead extended to the upper realm as well. Because they had the most number of Exalted Celestials in the upper realm, they did not create their own celestial clans once they were in the upper realm but grouped quickly as a dominating force. Anyone that killed a member of the Ascension Sect was swiftly dealt with and their associate celestial clans would be paid a vengeful visit as well!
Lian Longba shouted at his men, “Calm down! The Ascension Sect isn’t here. You have been with me for such a long time and you allow mere words to frighten you? The Ascension Sect may be a large clan but these people aren’t even Exalted Celestials. Do you think the Ascension Sect cares about their fates? What do we have to fear them?”
One of the men said, “But they have divine swords. Their backers must be powerful. What if it is the Ancient Celestials, then we are in trouble…”
Lian Longba snapped, “It is obviously that the Stellar Heaven Fairy is just trying to use the Ascension Sect to frighten us. The Dominating Aura Clan has many associate celestial clans as allies. Do we need to fear the Ascension Sect or even the Ancient Celestials even if it is true?”
Yi Ping coughed weakly as he stared angrily at Lian Longba, “You call yourself an Exalt Celestial? Yet you are no different from a bandit!”
Lian Longba hummed coldly for he was not going to take this insult lying down!
With a sudden flash, he had leapt upon Yi Ping with a tremendous speed and had raised his powerful martial palm straight on his forehead!
The windforce that was generated from Lian Longba’s palm was so powerful that the entire air exploded thunderous!
Yi Ping quickly put aside the Divine Echo and the White Phoenix as he raised his palm to receive to receive the blow as he thought panicky, “His martial power is the same as when I have used the Asper Divinity Horizon Hand? And he has used it so casually…”
All of a sudden, Yixian was in their midst with a supernatural speed and had raised her hand with the Divine Emerald Skill to receive the blow!
There was a tremendous thunderclap and the martial force that exploded was so powerful that Yi Ping was flung off his feet! Even Lie Qing, Lele and the rest of the maidens could hardly stand on their feet as they were forced to slide backward by the resultant martial force that rippled throughout!
Yixian was forced to take several steps backward as she coughed out blood but her gentle eyes were still looking at Yi Ping, “Ping’Er, are you alright?”
But without waiting for Yi Ping to reply her, she had suddenly collapsed on the ground!
Yi Ping was beside her in an instant as he called out panicky, “Xian’Er! Xian’Er!”
Lingfeng and Shen Xingyue immediately bend down to check her pulses anxiously!
Lian Longba too, was forced back several steps but he had not taken any injuries. He was surprised as he thought, “She can actually take a blow from my Dominating Force?”
In the ensuring conflict, Yixian the Celestial Fairy had displayed the ninth level of the Divine Emerald Skill to absorb Lian Longba’s Dominating Force. The Dominating Force was too much to handle even for the Celestial Fairy, shattering her Divine Emerald Skill in her weakened state and it had taken a heavy toll on her physically!
There was a burst of seven wisps of blue energetic glow around Lie Qing as she raised her Perpetual Darkness. Immediately, blood began to trickle from the tip of her lips as she stared at Lian Longba coldly, “Sister Yixian may not lose to you if she is not injured. Don’t be conceit yet, I am still around!”
Yi Ping knew that Lie Qing had forcefully exercised her Invincible Divine Force and if she used her Pandora Merciless Strike, the backlash on herself would be fatal in her present state!
He panicky tried to shout for her to stop but before he could call out, his vital energies had reversed and he had coughed out a bout of blood as he fell backward!
Yujian, Meijian, Yunzi, Lingfeng, Youxue and Shen Xingyue panicky surrounded him!
Lian Longba laughed, “Do you think you have completely elude my Dominating Force?”
Lele raised her long black scythe and she was suddenly solemn. The usual expressive glow in her eyes had completely disappeared and her crimson eyes were murderous!
The Stellar Heaven Fairy quickly pleaded to Lie Qing and Lele, “Step back! You are not his match! Run!”
Lian Longba laughed, “They won’t run. It is because they can’t bear to abandon this handsome man. That will be their downfall and will be their lifelong mistake. They really have no idea what they are facing and did not know who exactly I am. Oh mine, today is simply my lucky day and the best day of my life!”
Lie Qing said coldly, “I don’t care if the Stellar Heaven Fairy is my protégé mistress previously or not. I won’t make the same mistake as her. I will sooner die than fall into your hands but I will make sure that you perish along with me!”