Unsheathed - C.283 (3): Rising Incense Smoke


C.283 (3): Rising Incense Smoke

Chapter 283 (3): Rising Incense Smoke

True Martial Mountain.

As one of the two ancestral forces of the Militarian Sect in Eastern Treasured Vial Continent, far more Militarian cultivators from True Martial Mountain joined the army compared to Wind Snow Temple, a force that consisted of many more wandering cultivators.

During the past year, more and more cultivators had left the mountain, with half of them heading to the Great Li Empire in the north. Meanwhile, the rest of them had gone to some nations in the central region of Eastern Treasured Vial Continent according to their own fated opportunities.

Recently, however, the somewhat deserted True Martial Mountain had started to become lively again.

Ma Kuxuan, the domineering new member who had only entered the mountain a few years ago, had caused a huge commotion again. He had pummeled a Sea Observation Tier cultivator to death. True Martial Mountain didn't announce the specific reason behind this, but it was certain that no great animosity existed between the two people. The elderly cultivator barely ever interacted with Ma Kuxuan. Even if they did engage in conflict, it would only be verbal battles at most. Thus, it was definitely the cruel and merciless Ma Kuxuan who had purposely attacked to kill.

Even though two grand elders pleaded the case for Ma Kuxuan, the young boy was still ultimately confined in the Divine Martial Hall located at the back of the mountain. He was prohibited from leaving for an entire year.

The past patriarchs and a dozen or so unnamed deities were honored in the Divine Martial Hall. It was said that True Martial Mountain had once encountered a great calamity that threatened severe and wide-ranging consequences. During that critical moment, the sect master of that generation had used an untaught secret technique to summon help from the golden deity statues that had enjoyed incense for thousands of years in the great hall. They had left the mountain to kill enemies together, eventually annihilating more than ten immortal sects in a single go. That had been a magnificent feat.

However, being confined in the Divine Martial Hall definitely wasn't a comfortable experience. Only cultivators who had committed severe crimes in True Martial Mountain would be locked up in this place. In fact, fewer than one in ten people could make it out alive. According to rumors, the deities honored in the Divine Martial Hall would "awaken" on some ancient fasting days that were no longer observed. During these times, they would interrogate, punish, and even consume the souls of cultivators.

In an immortal residence in True Martial Mountain that was covered in immortal qi, a Militarian grand elder of extremely high seniority roared in rage, "Isn't punishing Ma Kuxuan like this a little too severe?!"

The person opposite him looked like a handsome young man. His fingers were as pale and slender as those of women, and he was setting up a Go board according to some manual. He was unfazed by his junior brother's almost disrespectful manner of questioning, and he was surprisingly unwilling to say even a single word.

The old man slammed his hand on the table and shouted, "Ma Kuxuan is the most prodigious talent I've seen in my life! He's a genuine prodigy! I'll never forgive you if you ruin him!"

The handsome man had just picked up a Go piece. When he heard this, he silently placed the Go piece back into its box and said with a frown, "There are, in fact, many tragic examples of sects and other such forces being destroyed by some extraordinary disciple."

The old man chuckled coldly and replied, "But there are even more examples of a single disciple revitalizing their sect and wiping away all weaknesses and issues!"

The handsome man shook his head and explained, "When it comes to cultivation, the notion of not doing wrong is the most important thing. Otherwise, if we break all of our ancestral rules for the sake of one or two people, we'll only end up with an unsupported pagoda in the sky even if we achieve temporary signs of prosperity.

"In any case, True Martial Mountain is running smoothly at the moment, and we're not in some perilous position where we need someone to save us. Junior Brother Liu, hear my advice. You have high hopes for Ma Kuxuan, so at the end of the day, it's your own personal matter if you're willing to give him all of your immortal treasures and even secretly help him obtain that fated opportunity. I won't interfere with these things. After all, they aren't against the rules of True Martial Mountain."

The old man looked at the "young man" whose expression was becoming increasingly cold. Initially overbearing, the Militarian grand elder couldn't help but feel a little nervous at this moment. He humphed coldly and insisted, "It's worth it for True Martial Mountain to break some rules for Ma Kuxuan. Wind Snow Temple has the Divine Platform's Wei Jin, but who do we have?"

"We have me," the handsome man replied with a faint smile.

The old man almost choked upon hearing this. He couldn't find any words for a long time.

The handsome man seemingly found the atmosphere too tense for his liking, so he finally smiled and said, "Alright, as the saying goes, our descendants will all have their own fortunes. In any case, Ma Kuxuan isn't even your descendant, so what are you so worried about? Are you doing this for the sake of the sect? Who are you trying to dupe? I know your personality best, don't I? At the end of the day, you're simply doing this in the hope that Ma Kuxuan can go to Wind Snow Temple to exact revenge for you in the future."

The Militarian grand elder who was renowned for his short temper conceded frankly, "That was indeed my original intention. However, after interacting with him for a while, I'm becoming increasingly fond of Ma Kuxuan. Even a thousand of my useless descendants aren't as capable as a single Ma Kuxuan."

The handsome man concurred with the old man in a rare display, nodding and saying, "Mhm, you indeed shouldn't have given birth to those bastard descendants of yours back then. To put things simply, it's your own fault for not being able to control the buddy in your pants."

"As the sect leader of True Martial Mountain, don't you feel ashamed to say such things?!" the old man fumed.

The handsome man smiled and said in amusement, "I heard that your pants became loose again recently? You found yourself a beautiful mortal mistress?"

The old man's anger instantly subsided, and he replied in a low voice, "I truly like that woman. She's innocent and adorable, unlike those bullshit celestial maidens from the mountains. Those celestial maidens are truly tiring."

"As long as you like her," the handsome man replied casually.

Fury suddenly welled up inside the old man again, and he suggested, "We genuinely need to fix the atmosphere in True Martial Mountain, especially regarding the disciples that we took in during the past hundred years. Their disposition is truly far too pathetic. There's only a single Ma Kuxuan, yet they're jumping around in disarray and fear, with even their Dao Hearts completely shaken. All of them are spouting sour shit behind his back.... They're worse than mortal women gossipping!"

The handsome man waved his hand and commented, "Their Dao Hearts aren't shaken. Rather, their Dao Hearts were weak and fragile to begin with."

"You're not going to do something about this?" the old man asked in puzzlement.

"Then should I take care of their eating and shitting as well? Should I take care of your loose pants as well?" the handsome man retorted.

The old man rolled his eyes.

"Rest assured, Ma Kuxuan won't die."

The handsome man waved a hand and turned his attention back to the Go board.

The Militarian grand elder roared with laughter before suddenly standing up and exclaiming, "Senior Brother, why you... You should have said this earlier! That way, I wouldn't have needed to waste half a day with you here!"

"Your belt is loose," the handsome man said without looking up.

The old man chuckled and remarked, "You're still as fond of telling jokes as always..."

In the next moment, however, the old man suddenly yelped in a flustered manner, hurriedly activating a mystical ability and disappearing with a flash.

As it turned out, the handsome man had caused the Nascent Tier earth immortal's belt to crumble with a casual wave of his hand. Not only that, but the earth immortal hadn't noticed this at all.

What if the handsome man had wanted to kill him?

In the eyes of Eastern Treasured Vial Continent, True Martial Mountain was powerful in the sense that it had a huge influence over mortal empires. In terms of individual cultivation base and combat power, the many Militarian immortals from Wind Snow Temple were far more powerful than their counterparts in True Martial Mountain.

Some people joked that if the two Militarian ancestral forces each picked ten members to battle against each other, the supremely powerful Wind Snow Temple would pummel the cultivators of True Martial Mountain until they cried for their ancestors.

The handsome man put the old Go manual on the table. The manual was called Endgame Collection, and he had memorized the entire contents of the manual already. It recorded the endgame plays of many famous historical matches, and the endgame play that the handsome man was setting up right now was called the Iridescent Cloud Setup. The opponents in this game had been the city lord of White Emperor City and the former first disciple of the Scholarly Sage.

The handsome man sighed softly.

Inside the Divine Martial Hall located at the back of the mountain...

Ma Kuxuan was sitting cross-legged on the head of a tall statue of a deity. Meanwhile, a black cat was sitting on the young boy's head.

A person, a cat, and the statue of a deity.

The black cat extended a paw and lightly scratched Ma Kuxuan's head.

Ma Kuxuan paid no heed to this. He and the black cat had depended on each other ever since he was little, and this was even more the case now that his grandma had passed away.

A golden glow suddenly appeared in the eyes of a gold-gilded wooden statue to the left of Ma Kuxuan. There was a rumble as the gigantic statue of the deity started to move, slowly stepping down from its divine altar and looking around at its surroundings. In the end, its gaze settled on Ma Kuxuan, who was sitting on the head of the statue in the middle. The nine meter tall statue of the deity walked to the center of the large hall before turning to the young boy and his cat and kneeling down on one knee.

Ma Kuxuan was seemingly used to this, and he simply repeated the same warning that he always gave, "Remember to keep quiet after you go back."

The wooden statue of the deity nodded lightly before standing up and striding forward, returning to its original position on the divine altar. It wasn't long before it became still, with the golden glow quickly disappearing from its eyes.

The doors and windows of the great hall were extremely large, allowing many rays of light to seep through and scatter across the floor. Thus, even the dust in the great hall was visible.

"Having too many immortal treasures and having too good a fortune is also quite annoying," Ma Kuxuan suddenly remarked in a self-ridiculing manner.

The black cat raised a leg and gently licked its paw.

Ma Kuxuan leaned back and lay down. The black cat jumped up, and it landed on Ma Kuxuan's chest after the young boy finished his movement. It curled up and quickly fell asleep.

The black cat occasionally shifted into a more comfortable position.

Ma Kuxuan crossed his legs and raised a hand to stroke the soft fur of the black cat. He recalled both the taunting remarks and the obsequious comments that he had heard in True Martial Mountain, and he felt like all of these things were quite uninteresting. "So what if you people don't like me? I don't like you people either."

The great hall was spacious and ethereal.

Only the soft snoring of a person and a cat cut through the silence.

The golden statues of the deities stood in a row, appearing as if they were loyally guarding their ruler who stood high above them, day by day, year after year, for a thousand years and then for ten thousand.


Zhou Ju, the virtuous scholar from Lake View Academy, didn't follow his sagely master to Complete Reed Continent to visit that Daoist Heavenly Lord.

He was afraid that he wouldn't be able to contain himself from insulting Xie Shi. If that were to happen, he would only be making things more difficult for his master.

After leaving the academy, his master definitely couldn't rival Xie Shi. However, his master also couldn't stand there and do nothing if Xie Shi wanted to smack his disciple to death. That being the case, what else could he do? Apologize to an outsider for his disciple?

Thus, Zhou Ju traveled to a mountain peak not far from where Ceremony Mountain's kun ship had fallen.

According to the records, the soaring sword qi had originated from this location and annihilated the kun ship traveling south to Old Dragon City. There had been many casualties, and almost everyone under the Middle Five Tiers had been killed.

Zhou Ju found nothing on the mountain. There wasn't a single trace left. However, this was completely reasonable and expected.

After all, even blind fools could see that someone was carefully plotting and scheming behind the scenes. Someone was trying to frame this very powerful empire in Eastern Treasured Vial Continent.

However, there was one thing that Zhou Ju couldn't wrap his mind around. Why was the mighty Dao Lord of Complete Reed Continent willing to lower his status and become involved in this complicated matter? In fact, he was even willing to go as far as to "take arms" against Lake View Academy. If this continued, it was very likely that Heavenly Lord Xie Shi would become the common enemy of all Qi refiners in Eastern Treasured Vial Continent.

Perhaps Xie Shi was truly treating himself as the second disciple of the Dao Ancestor?

Zhou Ju wasn't convinced that the Great Li Empire's Song Clan could employ the help of a Heavenly Lord from another continent.

After staying in the wilderness for many days, Zhou Ju planned to leave the mountain soon.

He had heard his master casually mention one matter. During the past half a year, many previously lost and ownerless immortal treasures had suddenly started to appear in three continents: Southern Whirl Continent, Parasol Leaf Continent, and Circling Ascension Continent. In fact, there were even traces of several pseudo-celestial tools hidden among these immortal treasures.

This triggered a huge commotion, and countless vagrant cultivators from the mountains and marshes rushed over to the locations where the treasures had appeared. The powerful immortal clans and forces naturally weren't willing to abandon these significant fated opportunities either. All of a sudden, there was a murky mix of all kinds of people and temporary alliances.

Zhou Ju wasn't interested in these matters.

He was even less interested in the worldly matters that were going to follow.

This was because it would most certainly become even more difficult for scholars to read and study in peace.

This wasn't good.

Zhou Ju raised his head and looked up at the sky.

I, Zhou Ju, Lake View Academy's measly virtuous scholar, Zhou Juran, am also able to discover some traces, so what about you people, beings who have an even higher status than my master?

Zhou Ju silently made his way down the mountain. He wandered down lazily, either riding on the wind or walking with both feet. In the end, he arrived at a bustling market and drank a steaming bowl of hot and sour soup.

A smile instantly spread across Zhou Ju's face, wiping all of the irritation from his mind.

The stall owner's daughter was right in her youthful prime. Her skin was slightly tanned, yet it shone with a healthy luster. She secretly stole a few glances at Zhou Ju.

There were few scholars in her hometown, and there were even fewer scholars who were as handsome as him.

She felt like even taking a single extra glance would be good.

And thus, Zhou Ju ordered another bowl of hot and sour soup.

This content is taken from fr(e)ewebn(o)vel.𝓬𝓸𝓶