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Qin Wentian stared silently at Mu Feng’s departing back. He understood that the calamity that befell Mu Feng’s family had completely caused his temperament and personality to change.
Mu Feng’s heart was even stronger compared to before, and even that fearsome poisonous qi hadn’t managed to kill him. Instead, under the stimulation of another poison, both toxins complemented the other by counteracting the other, achieving a balance in his body.
Shifting his gaze aside, Qin Wentian stared at Shu Ruanyu once again as he smiled, “Were you dumped by Yang Fan?”
Shu Ruanyu instantly frowned when she heard that. She glared at Qin Wentian before gritting her teeth and replying, “No, I was the one that proposed the breakup.”
Qin Wentian nodded, it seemed that his guess was right. The transcendent powers were all extremely mindful of their reputation. Although he didn’t do anything to Shu Ruanyu, she was still his captive for quite a long period of time. Such a scenario would definitely give rise to countless gossips, which eventually led to the break up between Yang Fan and Shu Ruanyu.
“Earlier, you tried every possible method at your disposal to kill me, and that was the only reason why I chose to capture you instead. Let the grudge between us come to an end here, and if you still want to make trouble for me, you can try but I guarantee that you won’t be let off so easily,” Qin Wentian faintly stated, while Fan Le beside him burst out into despicable-sounding laughter. “Careful that I don’t catch you and have you warm our beds.”
Shu Ruanyu bit her lips, glaring fiercely at Fatty. After a moment of silence, she finally turned and left with reluctance.
Qin Wentian put aside all thoughts of Shu Ruanyu. He leisurely advanced forwards, arriving at the entrance to the Ancient Kingdom.
Ahead, ninety-nine azure dragon stone steps congregated into the sacred pathway, exuding an imposing and majestic aura. Located in front of the first step was a nine-sided gigantic drum. At the beginning of the sacred path, the drum’s reverberations must echo nine times before one is deemed worthy to set foot on the ancient path, before one can even be qualified to fight for a position on the Heavenly Fate Rankings.
On both sides of the azure dragon steps, was a separate winding pathway that could be used by the spectators to ascend upwards, following the route of the ancient sacred path.
Rumour had it that the two winding paths were used back then for the Royal Clan and Grand Clans to inspect the Grand Xia’s troops.
But now, these two winding paths were used by the spectators to witness the contenders trying to wrest the luck and fight for positions on the Heavenly Fate Rankings for the audience’s delight.
How many heroes of the younger generations had fallen because of ascending the steps, sounding out the drums, fighting for the rankings.
The sacred pathways were all extremely cruel. On the road of this pilgrimage, only a total of 360 cultivators would be able to rank among the Heavenly Fate Rankings. The others would all be dead or injured seriously to the point where they were no better off alive than dead.
And out of the 360 rankers, only the top thirty-six would gain the title of Heaven’s Chosen.
Countless geniuses were obliterated every three years.
Qin Wentian stood there, gazing at that ancient pathway.
The Grand Xia was unimaginably vast, and here the geniuses were as common as the clouds. All of them had spent years cultivating bitterly before coming here for the Heavenly Fate Rankings battle. Every individual had their own stories, their own dreams—all to allow their names to resound throughout Grand Xia and stand at the pinnacle of Yuanfu.
He didn’t know how powerful his opponents would be, he also didn’t know the extent of the danger he would face. He only knew that his determination wouldn’t waver and his heart had never changed.
Before he could dominate Grand Xia, he needed to control the White Deer Institute, and therefore he needed this battle to climb up into one of the top three rankings. This was a starting point for him.
He needed this battle so he could defeat Zhan Chen, so that Luo He wouldn’t interfere with his relationship with Mo Qingcheng.
He needed this battle to allow his name to echo throughout Grand Xia, to let them know who exactly was Qin Wentian.
Closing his eyes, Qin Wentian entered into a meditative state. The gentle wind breezed past his ears as countless streams of voices entered his ears.
At a certain location, an aged figure gazed at the young man beside him as he stated, “Son, your talent is extraordinary. With your preparations throughout the years, this battle will the one to catapult your name into endless fame.”
At another location, a young man was smiling as he faced his clan members, “Father, Mother, Grandpa, don’t worry about me, I will do my best.”
There was also a young lady cheering her elder brother on, with her fist pumping into the air, “Brother, you have to do your best! There may be many beauties falling in love with you after this, so you’d better find me a good sister-in-law.”
The words of the elders, their friends, as well as the individual contenders all merged together.
Some among them were from ordinary backgrounds, while others were from the major powers. There was no doubt that the vast majority among the contenders this time around would either be eliminated early on or fall at the later stages. This was the baptism of destiny. If one wanted to contend for the luck, they had to face this cruel ultimatum.
Fan Le walked up, glancing at Qin Wentian and seemed as though he was preparing to say something. Suddenly, he saw Luo Huan waving her hands, signalling for him not to disturb Qin Wentian.
Chu Mang sat down beside Qin Wentian, quietly gazing at the ancient pathway as well.
Luo Huan had a beautiful smile on her face when she glanced at the countenance of her favourite Junior Brother. No matter if he failed or succeeded, she would still feel proud of him.
This wasn’t the Jun Lin Banquet, this place wasn’t Chu. This time around, the opponents Qin Wentian would face possessed the most monstrous talent among the younger generations in Grand Xia.
Qing`er also glanced at Qin Wentian. A bright light flashed past her eyes but it was unknown what she was thinking about, she stared at his features for a moment longer before departing the area.
The Bailu siblings stared at the ninety-nine azure dragon steps ahead of them, as boundless anticipation and yearning bloomed in their hearts.
The surrounding crowd gradually increased in number. All of them were here waiting for the commencement of the ranking battle.
Countless scenes flashed past Qin Wentian’s mind, he felt he had only been here for an instant, yet somehow, it also felt like an eternity.
Three days of waiting passed by like a fleeting dream.
Upon waking, he felt that this sensation of passing time was extremely mysterious.
He felt as though he had somehow touched upon something, yet that thing remained as fuzzy as smoke He was unable to get a clear grasp on what he’d faintly gained an insight into.
Whistling sounds rang out as the silhouettes in their surroundings all started to step upon the platform before the ninety-nine steps of the ancient sacred pathway.
Among these people, Qin Wentian spotted many familiar faces, such as Luo He from the Pill Emperor Hall, as well as the leader from the Ouyang Aristocrat Clan. Those representing the transcendent powers of Grand Xia had arrived.
In the centre of this group were undoubtedly the respective leaders of the nine supreme-level transcendent powers: Great Solar Chen Clan, Venerate Heavens Sect, Shi Clan, Wang Clan. Pill Emperor Hall, Hua Clan, Yan Swallow Swordsmen, Ouyang Aristocrat Clan, and Skydemon Sect.
Three of the powers stood directly in the middle of this group; on the left was the Chen Clan, on the right was the Shi Clan, with the experts from the Venerate Heavens Sect standing between.
These three powers were located in Ginkou and could be considered the ‘leaders’ of the pilgrimage. From the Venerate Sect, was an old man who rose into the air, he exuded a faintly discernable mist-like aura. Qin Wentian could see the reverence and respect on the faces of the crowd when they looked at the old man.
Because, this old man was the person currently in charge of the Venerate Heavens Sect—Old Man Tianji.
Old Man Tianji was skilled in the arts of reading the movements of constellations, observing the luck and destiny of Grand Xia. He could peer into the future, gaining knowledge of heavenly secrets. Although the Venerate Heavens Sect wasn’t proficient in combat, no other transcendent powers dared to belittle them. They were the one who set Grand Xia’s rankings, including the Heavenly Fate and Heavenly Dipper Rankings.
Old Man Tianji waved his hands at the crowd below him, an amiable smile on his face.
At that instant where he waved his hands, the countless numbers of silhouettes started to part all the way to the sides, opening up a space in the centre for him. Very swiftly, the left and right areas on the platform were filled, and there were even people getting pushed off because of the lack of space. Gradually, the region below the platform was devoid of those who wanted to compete, leaving only the spectators. Everyone on the platform, be it the young ones, the middle-aged or even the old, they were here to fight the ranking battle for a position on the Heavenly Fate Rankings.
The atmosphere turned solemn as people waited for Old Man Tianji to speak. Qin Wentian glanced at the crowd, before glancing back at the old man. He was paying attention to how those from the supreme transcendent powers would act.
All of them were only thinking of one thing. Who among them would obtain first and be able to have his name resound throughout Grand Xia.
Each of the cultivators’ gazes were strewn in different directions, with each of them staring at those on the platform that they felt had the highest chance of ranking at the top.
For people like Chen Wang and Shi Potian, the amount of attention they garnered was the greatest. They were ranked only after Hua Taixu, and now that Hua Taixu was gone, they stood the highest chance among all in occupying the top spot.
“Junior Brother, do your best.” Luo Huan walked in front of Qin Wentian, giving him a huge hug before exiting the platform. Her soft and supple body caused his heart to pound rapidly, Qin Wentian could only smile awkwardly in response.
Bailu Yi hugged her brother Bailu Jing before walking up to Qin Wentian, giving him a hug as well, making him feel slightly overwhelmed from all the love he was getting.
“I’ll be waiting to see your name among the top three rankers after the battle,” Bailu Yi whispered before walking away together with Luo Huan.
Qin Wentian, Ouyang Kuangsheng, Bailu Jing, Chu Mang and Fan Le all stood together in a group, yet no one really paid much attention to them. After all, they were all relatively unknown compared to the top rankers on the previous rankings. Also, for those that gathered here, all of them were talented geniuses from all corners of Grand Xia. This was also the reason why no one paid much attention to Qin Wentian and his group of friends.
As for Mo Qingcheng, with her unmatched countenance, she would garner attention wherever she went. At this moment, she wasn’t that far away from Qin Wentian. Zhan Chen followed closely behind her, his eyes flashing with a sinister looking light as he cast a glance at Qin Wentian and the rest.
Luo He, who stood in the air, reacted in a similar way—when she noticed Qin Wentian, a frown plastered over her face as a cold light flickered in her eyes.
“That maiden is so beautiful…” The hearts of the crowd sighed when they noticed Mo Qingcheng. There were countless beauties in Grand Xia, but the lone charms of Mo Qingcheng were enough to overshadow all the rest.
“Who is she?” Somebody among the crowd couldn’t help but ask.
“Mo Qingcheng form the Pill Emperor Hall. Indeed, the rumors are true, even a character like Hua Taixu was moved by her beauty and wanted to woo her.”
“The one behind her is Zhan Chen. There were rumors saying that he cultivated an extremely terrifying cultivation art. Being in the top ten should be no problem to him, and he might even have a chance to contend for the top three. Regretfully, I heard that he’s been wooing Mo Qingcheng for ages but is always met with utter rejection.”
The countless people here all had boundless amounts of thoughts running through their minds. The spectators all hoped that time would pass faster, allowing them to view the newly crowned legends of the refreshed rankings.
Finally, those who wanted to participate in the ranking battle, all stayed away from the empty space in the centre.
Old Man Tianji gazed at the contenders below as he slowly spoke, “A few thousand years ago, in this very location, the Ancient Grand Xia fell, and the Empire fragmented into nine pieces. In spite of this, the Ancient Kingdom continued to focus their efforts and gather the luck, destiny, and spiritual qi of Grand Xia. Hence, every three years, the talented geniuses from all corners of Grand Xia gather here once more, to set off on a pilgrimage to the Ancient Kingdom. The battle to wrest away the luck and destiny shall belong to no other than the strongest, therefore becoming characters on the Heavenly Fate Ranking.”
“I’m the one that observes the destiny of Grand Xia. Omens are showing, signs are already foretelling that one among you will reunite Grand Xia under one banner once more. We can only wait for the advent of such an individual, the one destined to change the world as we know it. Who then, among you, will be the one to control the future of Grand Xia?
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