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Chapter 1983: Enlightenment Through Nothingness

Chapter 1983: Enlightenment Through Nothingness
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Chapter 1983 - Enlightenment Through Nothingness

Partially Edited Chapter - Rubble

Yun Che finally “woke up” from his slumber.

Helian Lingzhu and Mo Cangying were just about to take their leave when they heard a noise and spun around. By then, Yun Che had already opened his eyes.

Helian Lingzhu’s eyes flickered with joy, but she carefully maintained her bearing as the imperial princess and smiled. “You’re awake.”

Mo Cangying’s eyes were considerably more surprised and critical. It was a miracle that the young man had managed to survive the trip back to the empire. To wake up in such a short time? That was yet another miracle.

Yun Che twitched but could not muster the strength to sit up from the bed. So, he shot them a grateful smile as best he could and said, “Thank you… for saving my life, you two.”

Mo Cangying narrowed his eyes. “How did you know that we’re the ones who saved you?”

Yun Che replied frankly, “I maintained a sliver of consciousness despite my injuries. I just wasn’t able to wake up until now.”

Helian Lingzhu and Mo Cangying looked astonished. They had seen how horrific his injuries were. How was he not fully unconscious? Was it even possible?

Despite his weakness, Yun Che stared at his savior with pure, grateful eyes. “First Princess, Brother Mo, I swear… I’ll pay you back… one—”

It seemed to consume all of his strength just to say those few sentences. Every time he said a word, his voice would weaken a little more. Helian Lingzhu interrupted, “Enough. You should focus on resting. You can repay us after you’re healed.”

“You’re in the Heavenly Reversal Pavilion of the Helian Heavenly Palace. The yellow profound aura in this place will aid in your recovery. So rest.”

Mo Cangying spoke up next, but his tone was far stiffer than Helian Lingzhu’s. “What is your name? Where do you come from? How did you come to be hurt so badly? And why have you set foot in our Qilin Abyss Realm?”

The Qilin Abyss Realm was surrounded by sandstorms and located near the Mist Sea. Its most active elemental aura was sandstone, something most profound practitioners were unwilling to cultivate. Therefore, very few outsiders would willingly cut through the sandstorm to enter the Qilin Abyss Realm.

Yun Che was silent for a moment. “The Qilin Abyss Realm?”

His voice softened a tad. “I don’t know. I was already in the sandstorm when I awoke. My whole body hurts, and… I think I remember being hunted by a lot of people. It was terrifying. Everything after that is darkness and white… I don’t know where I was or how I came to be here… Argh!”

Yun Che’s face twitched with pain as if he had triggered his “horrifically injured” soul sea, but he suppressed it as best he could.

“Heh.” Mo Cangying sneered in disbelief. “It’s common sense to be wary of others. If you wish to keep silent about your past, you can simply not say anything about it. You do not need to make up such a shoddy excuse.”

Yun Che looked up and stared Mo Cangying in the eyes. His gaze was weak but unafraid. “Brother Mo, First Princess, you saved my life. I have nothing but gratitude in my heart. I could never bring myself to lie to you two.”

Mo Cangying’s face remained as stiff as ever despite Yun Che’s plea. He was just about to ask another question when Helian Lingzhu touched his shoulder. “You saw how injured he was. It wouldn’t be surprising that his soul was severely injured, and his memories were affected as a result.”

Yun Che turned to her and shot her a grateful smile. His eyes looked so pure that Helian Lingzhu actually stopped breathing for a second and had to look away. It was simply unimaginable that he was lying with those eyes.

“Do you… remember your own name?” Helian Lingzhu asked.

“...” Mo Cangying couldn’t help but shoot her a glance. Her tone was so gentle it was like she was talking to a wounded baby deer, not a person.

“Yun… Che…” Yun Che said slowly, “That is the one name I can remember in my empty head. I think it’s my name.”

“Yun Che… Yun?” Helian Lingzhu furrowed her brow lightly. In the Abyss, only a small subset of people carried that surname. There was no one like that in the Qilin Abyss Realm, and no powerful expert or clan carried that surname either. It belonged to those who lived in the forgotten corners of the Abyss.

What really surprised her… was how Yun Che’s name [1] fit him perfectly. His eyes, his voice, his face, and even the bearing that was mostly covered up by his injuries matched his name perfectly.

“Forget it.” Mo Cangying was done with this. He turned his back on Yun Che and said, “Junior Sister Lingzhu, it’s time we meet master.”

“Very well.” Helian Lingzhu nodded and said to Yun Che as gently as before, “Please rest easy, Young Master Yun. You have my word that no outsiders will disturb your rest. Hopefully, you will remember something as you recover.”

The room returned to silence after Helian Lingzhu and Mo Cangying were gone. The profound energy in this place was much gentler compared to the outside world, and he could sense dozens of medicinal energies in the air as well. As Helian Lingzhu said, this was a place specifically built for rest and recovery.

It was too bad that there was nothing and no one—no one except the “White Big Sister” Hong’er spoke of—that could heal him faster than he could heal himself.

Yun Che slowly raised his hand and felt the abyssal dust in the air. It was at least a dozen times thinner than it was at that raging sandstorm he awoke at, so thin that the natives probably couldn’t sense it since they were born here. But for a new arrival like Yun Che, the abyssal dust felt so clear he could believe it was tangible.

He felt like an air-breathing mortal who was tossed into a world that was full of poisonous swamps. The so-called air he breathed in was utterly toxic, and it was silently invading his body and devouring his flesh, his blood, his bones, his energies and even his soul all the time.

Every move he made felt like he was wading through mud. Even his spiritual sense was severely impeded by it. To give an example, all six of his senses were suppressed to the point where they were less than ten percent of what they normally were, and this was in a mostly abyssal dust free zone. He could hardly imagine how much worse it was going to get outside the city or the legendary Endless Fog.

On the other hand, the elemental auras of this place defied imagination, and its level was completely beyond what he thought was possible.

In the Primal Chaos, the God Realm was the absolute highest plane of existence. But here? To make a comparison, the difference between this place and the God Realm was bigger than the difference between the God Realm and a lower realm. And it would only be bigger if he was in a Kingdom of God.

The space of this place was unimaginably tough as well. At his peak, the God Realm’s space was as frail as paper. A single wave was all he needed to collapse it. But here, the most damage he could do even if he gave it his all was ripples.

As far as he could tell, the cultivators of this place were no more talented and hardworking than the Primal Chaos’ cultivators. However, they were able to cultivate much faster and higher than the cultivators of Primal Chaos simply because their plane was higher.

The price, of course, was the corrosion of abyssal dust. Even in this healing ground where there were multiple barriers to keep the abyssal dust to a minimum, it was still invading his body soundlessly and tirelessly.

Thanks to the Ancestral God’s personal account, Yun Che knew better than most what the abyssal dust really was. It was the Power of Extinction that the Ancestral God had separated from the original Primal Chaos, but diluted so many times over that it could be resisted given a strong enough profound aura. When one had reached the level of a True God, they could even isolate it perfectly and achieve what the Abyss denizens called the “Divine Grace”.

Of course, not even True Gods could control abyssal dust as easily as they controlled profound energy. No matter how thin the Power of Extinction had become, it was still the cosmos’ most primal power. It was one of the ancestral energies that had given birth to the Ancestral God herself.

Of course it could not be controlled by the living of this era.

Yun Che lowered his arm and closed his eyes. While perceiving and resisting the abyssal dust, he slowly pushed his spiritual sense outward until he could hear Helian Lingzhu and Mo Cangying talking.

“... The boy’s surname is Yun, and there is no powerful expert or clan in our nation who carries that name, much less a Kingdom of God. I’m sorry to say this, Junior Sister Lingzhu, but it would seem that your disappointment is inevitable.”

“...” Helian Lingzhu did not give him an answer.

“There are still twenty seven days before the Qilin God Realm opens,” A hint of determination trickled into Mo Cangying’s voice, “We have been weak for too many years, and I doubt this year will be any different. But worry not. I will not leave your side for even a moment when we enter the Qilin God Realm this time. I will ensure your breakthrough even if I have to give up every opportunity to do so.”

“...” Helian Lingzhu was still silent.

“Junior Sister Lingzhu?” Mo Cangying shot his companion a glance.

“Ah?” Helian Lingzhu finally came back to earth. She smoothed out her expression as best she could and said, “I was thinking if I should ask master to heal Yun Che’s injuries. He—”

Mo Cangying abruptly stopped in his tracks.

Helian Lingzhu also stopped talking knowing that what she was about to say—had already said—was utterly inappropriate.

Mo Cangying stared at her as he said slowly, “Master is nearing the end of his lifespan, and he has been tormented by sickness and pain for years. However, he couldn’t even rest because his support is necessary to maintain the Helian Heavenly Pavilion. Barring exceptional circumstances, we should not trouble him if at all possible.”

“We’ve already done that boy a huge favor by saving his life. I understand that you’re exhausted due to the matter regarding the Qilin God Realm… but I cannot understand why you would be so invested in an outsider whose background is unknown, not to mention that I do not believe that he’s telling the truth.”

Helian Lingzhu did not refute his words. She said regretfully, “You are right, Ninth Senior Brother. I have been feeling distracted and inattentive as of late. For some reason, I couldn’t help but hope that some good karma might give the miracle Helian needs to change its fate.”

She wasn’t exaggerating. Right now, the only thing that could save Helian was a miracle or the Hand of God itself. It was a tragic yet undeniable fate.

Mo Cangying was going to point out that Helian Lingzhu’s attitude toward Yun Che was strange, but her depressing confession caused him to fall silent once more.

He had probably over thought this.

“I will return to the empire after I’ve spoken to the master about the Qillin Abyss Conference. As you say, we’ve already shown Yun Che the utmost kindness by bringing him here. He may remember our kindness, or he may not. It doesn’t matter. We would only be dishonoring ourselves by holding our favor over his head.”

Mo Cangying relaxed and nodded strongly. If he wasn’t sure before, now he believed that Helian Lingzhu’s unusual benevolence toward Yun Che was just her anxiety eating at her due to the approaching Qilin Abyss Conference. It was just a delusion born from desperation, and he could understand that sentiment.

Yun Che’s spiritual sense kept pace with the duo even as they grew farther and farther away. However, it was also weakening further and further due to the erosion of abyssal dust. He channeled more soul energy into his spiritual sense so that it wouldn’t falter.

For some reason, his heart, his soul, and even his profound veins were resonating deeply with this place called the “Qilin Abyss Realm”. He needed an opportunity to make his move, so of course he needed to gather as much information as possible.

By now, the duo had gone far, far away from his room. It was at this moment he picked up the aura belonging to the old man named Ku Xian.

Ku Xian was a peak Divine Master. If he kept this up, there was a high chance he would be discovered.

Yun Che was about to withdraw his spiritual sense when suddenly, a realization occurred to him.

This was the Abyss, and he needed to act with extreme caution. That was why he pushed away all stray thoughts from his mind and focused solely on his task.

Now, he suddenly realized that his spiritual sense actually felt… clearer than before. This should not be possible as it had been continuously weakened by abyssal dust since ten breaths ago. He should be feeling more suppressed than ever, not the opposite.

He tried focusing on his spiritual perception to find out what was going on. To his shock, he discovered that his soul energy was unconsciously pushing away the abyssal dust that came into contact with it!

He withdrew his mind and raised his hand once more. Squinting a little, he felt the abyssal dust with his fingers once more.

A long, long time later, he whispered, “Say, He Ling… Do you think… it’s possible for me to control the abyssal dust…?”

No one answered him. He would maintain this posture for several hours straight.

The abyssal dust was the form after the Power of Extinction had been diluted countless times over. Even so, True Gods and Creation Gods could only resist its power, not command it.

However, Xiao Lingxi (Ancestral God) had given him her own Sacred Body of Nothingness, and the final World-Defying Heaven Manual Xia Qingyuan left behind allowed him to complete the Ancestral Divine Art.

In that case…

Is it possible that…

Yun Che’s eyes slowly came into focus amidst the extended silence. It would not stop until it looked strangely empty.

1. literally means Cloud and Clear ☜


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