Chapter 228: New Initiatives
Citadel City of the Lofty Sky Reaches;
In just a matter of days, the Citadel City of the Lofty Sky Reaches was crowded with the thousands more cultivators as the cultivators from the other camps had quickly fled to this stronghold to regroup.
As a matter of fact, the number of cultivators quickly tripled and even the ranks of the golden celestials quickly doubled.
Right now the three divine rulers had just finished a meeting with all the leaders under their banner and were being updated of the current situation; although the three camps had been taken by surprise, most of the cultivators had managed to escape. However their losses of the spirit stones were heavy and without the precious spirit stones, they could only slowly cultivate back their lost profound strength.
Saint Yuan Chenggong cursed the dark celestials, “May they choke on all the spirit stones that they have looted from us.”
“Although we have lost our camps but it is not a big loss. Sometimes it is better for us to fight together rather than splitting our forces thinly.” Saint Linghu Fei said.
Saintess Su Rushuang smiled, “Although we may have some losses but the losses on the dark celestials are just as bad. They may have taken our camps but it is merely a small victory and we have made them paid heavily. In short, it is a costly victory for them. If you consider the situation on our side now, we have managed to lure them all out and they are now forced to defend on three sides while we have a single point here that is totally unassailable.”
Saint Yuan Chenggong pondered for a short while before he nodded, “True, true. Moreover the Devil Goddess is now out of the fight. This will make things easier for us now.”
Saint Linghu smiled weakly, “Don’t forget that they still have four great saintesses fighting on their side.”
Saintess Su Rushuang was smiling, “While we have more than two hundred golden celestials regrouping here now. What can four mere great saintesses do? They can’t change the situation. We outnumber them.”
Saint Yuan Chenggong nodded, “Moreover our new alliance leader looks formidable.”
Saintess Su Rushuang smirked coldly, “Unfortunately he is also out. Of all times, he had to pick such a time for his breakthrough. We don’t have spare spirit stones to help him to restore his inner elixir sea. I can be generous enough to donate him some couple of hundreds of spirit stones but it won’t be enough.”
Saint Yuan Chenggong nodded, “This is so true. He says that he is going for a short cultivation retreat to stabilize his new cultivation foundation. But I think he won’t be able to come out so soon.”
Saintess Su Rushuang nodded, “By the time he has finished stabilizing his new cultivation foundation, it would be months already. Therefore we can simply ignore this good-for-nothing alliance leader for the time being…”
All of a sudden the dozens of golden celestials had interrupted her as they hastily greeted Lu Qingyun who had entered the hall, “Alliance Leader Lu!”
Many of the golden celestials that were on Saintess Su Rushuang side had quickly raised their loud voices to drown her voice lest it was overheard by Lu Yun, their new alliance leader.
It was indeed Lu Qingyun and he had entered the hall with Qian Jingjing and Tang Xuefeng. As he entered through the hall, he said quietly. “I’ve heard that everyone is discussing on the plans to deal with the dark celestials today. Therefore I am thinking that I should be involved too. After all, I’m the alliance leader.”
Saintess Su Rushuang was looking a little flustered as she looked at him. “Indeed we are.”
Saintess Su Rushuang, Saint Linghu Fei and Saint Yuan Chenggong were actually looking at Lu Qingyun with a little shock. It was because Lu Qingyun seemed to be quite spirited as though he had regained his profound strength.
But it was impossible for any cultivator to regain their profound strength in a matter of three days.
So Saintess Su Rushuang chuckled with the intention of finding it out. “Alliance Leader Lu, we are so glad about you. Actually we want to ask you to attend this meeting but we are afraid to disturb your cultivation. You look really spirited today. I guess that it won’t be too long before you can recover your profound strength. Do you need any spirit stones from us?”
Lu Qingyun said quietly, “No need. I’ve already recovered my profound strength to the peak.”
When he had said that, the three divine rulers and all the golden celestials were all stunned. It was because it was clearly impossible to regain one’s profound strength to its peak after a breakthrough. Most realm breakthrough was extremely demanding and would drain almost all the cultivator’s reservoir of profound energies in their soul sea.
*Note that soul sea/ inner cultivation sea/ elixir sea actually shared the same meaning
Lu Qingyun really did not lie to them. He had really recovered his profound strength to his peak.
Three days ago, immediately after he was proclaimed to be the alliance leader, he had announced that he would be in a cultivation retreat to regain his profound strength.
Naturally, this was understandable as everyone here was a cultivator. After a breakthrough to a new realm, the cultivators would be at their weakest level and they would need to cultivate further to regain their profound strength. Most cultivators would usually take six months to a year to regain their profound strength but it was not unusual for some cultivators to take three years and even ten years to do so.
But for a high level cultivator to regain his profound strength to the peak in a matter of just three days was too exaggerating!
It was no wonder that all the high level cultivators in the hall were now staring with a doubtful look at Lu Qingyun.
Lu Qingyun saw their looks of disbelief and he asked nonchalantly, “You don’t believe?”
Three days earlier, when he was alone in the cultivation room, he had taken out hundreds of high grade spirit stones that he had taken from the flying citadel in the ancient celestial ruin. By cultivating and absorbing these high grade spirit stones, he would slowly regain his profound strength.
But he had too many of these high grade spirit stones and his absorption was too slow. Therefore he asked Yan’Er and Xingxin to cultivate as well.
Now because Yan’Er and Xingxin were both spirit entities, they could absorb at ten times the speed of any cultivator of their same level. Combined with Lu Qingyun who could also absorb three times as fast as any cultivator of his same level, their rates of absorption were actually 23 times faster than any cultivator of their same level.
Now because they were using high grade spirit stones that could triple the absorption rate by three times more, their speed of absorption was actually 69 times faster than any cultivator of their same level.
High grade spirit stones were 100 times more expensive than a normal spirit stone but it was highly valued by the high level cultivators for their breakthroughs and for regaining their profound strength. Even though the speed of absorption was only 2-3 times more but it was worth 100 times the value of a normal spirit stone because time was the equivalent to life and death for the cultivators.
This was especially so during a life and death tribulation.
If it was not for Lu Qingyun’s high grade spirit stones, Qian Jingjing’s breakthrough to her fifth realm golden celestial level would be much more risky.
But 69 times the normal speed was still not enough for Lu Qingyun to completely regain his profound strength. It was because his reservoir of profound energies in his inner cultivation sea was really too vast.
But luckily he had with him several fifth rank divine pills that could increase his rate of recovery by five times, upping his 69 times speed of recovery to 345 times. In just three days, he was cultivating at the astonishing speed of 1,035 times of any cultivator of his same level.
In short, in just three days he had cultivated an equivalent to 34.5 months or 2.875 years.
In just three days, a thousand high grade spirit stones were completely expended and a dozen of the fifth rank divine pills were also used!
Saint Yuan Chenggong laughed when he had heard Lu Qingyun said, “You don’t believe?”
“Naturally we believe Alliance Leader Lu. But isn’t it too hasty a recovery? We’re just worried if Alliance Leader Lu may feel unwell and may need a few more days of rest.”
Lu Qingyun returned a faint smile at him as he replied, “Thank you for Divine Ruler Saint Yuan’s concern for me. I’ve never been so good before. So this is the profound strength of a sixth realm golden supremacy? I feel that I can have another breakthrough to the sacred saint level anytime soon.”
Everyone was secretly cursing Lu Qingyun in their hearts. It sounded like breakthrough was a piece of cake to him. Every breakthrough for the golden celestials was a life and death tribulation. There were many golden celestials that had perished during their attempt to breakthrough to a new realm.
After getting a new lease of life, few golden celestials that had succeeded in their breakthroughs would want to attempt it again so soon. Why not enjoy the extended lifespan first that was brought about by the new breakthrough first?
That was what most golden celestials would be thinking first.
Moreover after each golden celestial breakthrough, it would take a long time to reach the peak of the new realm level. Lu Qingyun was the first that they had known to ever reach the upper tier sixth realm golden supremacy level after he had just breakthrough from the fifth realm cultivation level.
Saint Linghu Fei saw that Saint Yuan Chenggong was rendered speechless by Lu Qingyun so he stepped in to say, “Our new Alliance Leader Lu really knows how to be humorous.”
Then he said gravely, “We’re actually discussing on a stratagem to deal with the dark celestials. Since Alliance Leader Lu is here now, why don’t we let Alliance Leader Lu gives a one or two hopeful suggestions instead?”
Everyone was nodding but most of the nods and smiles were actually malicious. It was because none of them actually believed that Lu Qingyun had anything to offer. After all, he did not even have a power base to back him off.
What everyone saw was that he was only a puppet of the three divine rulers who were using him as their scapegoat if things go south.
Lu Qingyun inhaled softly before he said lightly, “We should have a peace talk with the dark celestials.”
When he had said that, everyone was laughing out loud.
“Orthodox and unorthodox do not mix!”
“Are we losing already? We have won 99 times and the dark celestials have only won just this once. And we are holding peace talks with them?”
“If we do, then won’t the dark celestials think of us as a laughing stock?”
“They may think that we’re afraid of them.”
“Peace talks? Too naïve!”
“We should attack them while the Devil Goddess is still severely wounded. Their morale must be low at this moment.”
“After we have bashed them hard then we talk about any peace talks.”
Saintess Su Rushuang gave Lu Qingyun a smile, “I’m sure that Alliance Leader Lu is able to see with your own eyes that this suggestion of yours isn’t garnering any support. Therefore I suggest we drop this impractical suggestion…”
Lu Qingyun interrupted nonchalantly, “We will have a peace talk with the dark celestials, with the Devil Goddess herself. I will tell her that we will all go back peacefully to our divine realms and we will all be willing to bury the hatchet.”
Saint Yuan Chenggong had immediately stepped forward angrily, “Don’t forget that we have made you our alliance leader because we’ve thought that you will be the hero that can lead us to fight against the Devil Goddess. Now you’re talking about a peace talk?! Are you a spy for the Devil Goddess or what?”
Saint Linghu Fei said with an ugly face, “We are now so close to wiping out the terror of the Devil Goddess forever. Without the Devil Goddess, the three dark divine realms will soon be broken up into three weaker divine realms. When that happens, true peace will reign in the Nine Celestial Fraternity and we will no longer live in the darkness of the Devil Goddess.”
Lu Qingyun asked quietly, “How many times have the Devil Goddess invaded the nine divine realms ever since she had united the three dark divine realm??”
Everyone rolled their eyes and said nothing. They could not recall any…
Saintess Su Rushuang smiled, “Just because she haven’t done so yet doesn’t mean she will not do so in the future. After all, uniting the three dark divine realms is just her first step. Sooner or later she will be targeting the other nine patriarch divine realms.”
Lu Qingyun said, “But she hasn’t yet, am I right?”
“What if she doesn’t have the intention?”
Then he added, “What if I can make her promise never to invade the nine patriarch divine realms?”
Saintess Su Rushuang hummed coldly, “No one has ever succeeded in telling the Devil Goddess what to do. No one.”
Saint Yuan Chenggong nodded, “Or else she won’t be the Devil Goddess that is feared by all in the Nine Celestial Fraternity.”
Lu Qingyun asked, “If you don’t try then how do you know that it won’t work?”
Saint Linghu Fei laughed coldly, “Don’t forget that we have killed so many of the dark celestials already. Even if we are willing, the dark celestials may not be willing…”
Lu Qingyun interrupted, “Since we’re willing then we may as well give it a try first. Whether they’re willing or not, let adopt a wait and see approach.”
Saint Linghu Fei hummed coldly, “Hold it! We didn’t say that we’re allowing this. Who do you think you really are? Have you forgotten that we are the ones that have put you in this position? Listen up, we have been nice to you so far so don’t push your luck too far with us.”
Saintess Su Rushuang was also smirking coldly as she looked at Lu Qingyun, Tang Xuefeng and Qian Jingjing. “It is just the three of you versus the opinion of all of us here.”
Lu Qingyun said quietly, “I am not alone here.”
He turned to nod gently at Tang Xuefeng.
Tang Xuefeng looked up to him as she returned a faint smile before she loosened the braid that was on her head, “My real celestial name is Yun Xuefeng. My father is Yun Xinghe, the divine ruler of the Celestial Sword Clan.”
Everyone was suddenly gasping when ‘Tang Feng’ had suddenly shed off her disguise.
“What an astonishing beautiful maiden…”
“She is really a great beauty…”
“I already know that she isn’t a man. How can a man be this beautiful…”
“Is she telling the truth?”
Saintess Su Rushuang was laughing to and fro, “Do you believe that we will believe you?”
Saint Yuan Chenggong hummed, “Do you know what the consequences are for the imposters?”
Saint Linghu Fei laughed, “Do you know that Saint Xinghe does not have a daughter or any heir?”
Tang Xuefeng chuckled as she clapped her hands three times.
All of a sudden two middle-age men had appeared in the entrance that was behind her.
When everyone saw the two middle-men, they had all turned ashen immediately.
It was because one was Great Saint Tang Yiren from the Celestial Sword Clan and the other was Great Saint Lin Wucheng from the Holy Ascension Sect. The two of them were not just from two of the biggest patriarch celestial clans but they were also great saints!
“Saint Tang Yiren…”
“Saint Lin Wucheng…”
Everyone was greatly startled.
Tang Xuefeng chuckled softly, “They are my god-fathers and naturally they will be able to prove my identity.”
Saint Linghu Fei was stammering, “I wonder what brings the two great saints here?”
Tang Yiren laughed jovially, “Naturally it is because I am trying to see who is trying to bully my god-daughter and her future significant other.”
Tang Xuefeng held onto Lu Qingyun’s arm and laughed softly, “That’s right. So who is still against the peace talks?”
Immediately all the other celestials kept quiet while the three divine rulers were all looking weakly at one another.
Two great saints from two of the most powerful celestial clans were now backing their new Alliance Leader Lu.
And an ‘heiress’ of the powerful Celestial Sword Clan had suddenly emerged from nowhere.
Saintess Su Rushuang was the first to speak, “Actually we can try the peace talk first. I never say that I am against it in the first place.”
Saint Linghu Fei was also laughing, “It is definitely worth trying first.”
Against the might of the two most powerful patriarch divine realms, their divine realms were just too puny to even compare against one of them. Therefore Saintess Rushuang, Saint Linghu Fei and the golden celestials that were under their banners had to humble themselves.
Saint Yuan Chenggong was the divine ruler of one of the three most powerful patriarch celestial clans and naturally he was not afraid of provoking the Celestial Sword Clan and the Holy Ascension Sect.
But if it was two major patriarch celestial clans then even his Divine Sovereign Clan would need to be tactful about it. Furthermore, his Divine Sovereign Clan did not even have a single great saint to support it.
Therefore he could only smile bitterly and said, “Peace talks? Naturally we welcome one if it comes along.”