Special Thanks to Kerin B for sponsoring this chapter.
Those who were congratulating and offering presents were nobles of the Imperial City. The crowd understood that those at the origin of the creation of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue were the Imperial Clan.
It is useless to mention that those who could join the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue were extremely powerful.
Those who were offering the presents then slowly moved back towards the crowd. Duan Tian Lang had a big smile on his face expressing his satisfaction at the way things were turning out. Everybody knew that the next step was the recruitment of new disciples.
But at that moment, a strong Qi emerged from the atmosphere. Everybody had the sensation that the top of their head was suddenly under heavy pressure which made them raise their heads towards the sky.
Suddenly, coming from the heavens like a meteor whose trajectory had the shape of a beautiful and perfect arch was piercing through the air at full speed straight towards Duan Tian Lang on the high stage.
“What’s going on?” shouted people in the crowd alarmed. Someone was surprisingly attacking Duan Tian Lang with an arrow on the day of the inauguration of the Holy Courtyard. How heartless!
Duan Tian Lang was surprised. The smile on his face vanished and was replaced with a cold and evil expression.
“Break!” A strong and powerful sword Qi spread through the atmosphere and blocked the arrow and causing it to fall down onto the ground. At the same time, a strong rumbling noise invaded everybody’s ears and the ground started shaking.
“Liu Cang Lan offers his congratulations for the establishment of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue.” said a loud voice which stupefied the crowd.
Liu Cang Lan, also known as Divine Arrow Liu Cang Lan, he had come and attacked Duan Tian Lang!
“Chi Xie Cavalry troops offer our congratulations for the establishment of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue.”
The reason for the rumbling noises and the shaking ground soon revealed itself. Far away in the horizon, the Qi of a multitude of Chi Xie armored cavalry suddenly revealed itself in the air. The entire crowd could feel the Qi growing nearer and nearer.
“What’s that? What’s going on?” cried out the crowd in alarm. Their expressions were drastically changing. Suddenly, a storm of arrows filled the sky above the crowd. The scene was strangely beautiful.
Everybody was stunned. They couldn’t help but blankly stare at all the arrows which were blotting out the sun. The sky was filled with so many arrows that the sunlight was struggling to pierce through.
Had Liu Cang Lan really come to congratulate the establishment of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue?
“How audacious!” furiously shouted Duan Tian Lang making an evil face. Duan Tian Lang suddenly jumped in the air while holding his sword which emitting a bright, resplendent light.
At the same time, many people jumped in the air as well releasing an extremely strong Qi and attacking the arrows in the sky.
Numerous arrows were falling down at that moment and people in the crowd chaotically tried to avoid being caught in the crossfire.
The Chi Xie armored cavalry quickly arrived and dispersed crowd. A strong wind surrounded them.
Their leader particularly attracted everybody’s attention. He had long snow-white hair. He was very handsome and his clothes looked beautiful and clean.
“It’s Liu Cang Lan! How come his hair has entirely turned white?” said some people in the crowd while looking at Liu Cang Lan. Could it be that he had come to the ceremony of the Holy Courtyard to cause trouble?
The Chi Xie armored cavalry had stopped. There were about two hundred of them. Each and every single one of them looked determined and majestic. They all looked like battle hardened conquerors.
“Liu Cang Lan, do you know what you’re doing?” said Duan Tian Lang evilly while fixedly staring at Liu Cang Lan who was sat atop his Chi Xie armored horse.
“I have come in the name of justice.” said Liu Cang Lan sounding calm and serene yet extremely determined.
“Justice?” said Duan Tian Lang while smiling coldly. “Today is the inauguration of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue, it’s the biggest and most important celebration of the country… and you dare talk about justice whatever that is supposed to mean.”
“I have been serving our country for at least twenty years, I have fought on many battlefields and I have never complained about it, even once. Then, I even sent my own daughter to all the corners of the country to find outstanding disciples who could join the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue and become pillars of our nation.” Said Liu Cang Lan while raising his head towards the sky. His long white hair was floating in the wind.
“I dedicated my life to the country. I am the commander of the army of Chi Xie cavalry… and you, Duan Tian Lang, asked me to lend you my army which I naively did. You then united with other large sects and used my Chi Xie cavalry to go and annihilate the Yun Hai Sect, the sect which made me into the man that I am today… the sect that trained me and cared for me. In one day, you exterminated all of them and left an unceasingly flowing river of blood behind you… and then, you dare say you don’t know what I mean by “justice”.” said Liu Cang Lan while slowly turning his head towards Duan Tian Lang. Liu Cang Lan’s words were filled with a sharp coldness.
When the crowd heard Liu Cang Lan’s words, they sighed with emotion. The Imperial Clan was indeed cruel!
Liu Cang Lan was an amazing person. He was a hero of the nation and surprisingly, the Imperial Clan had ordered the destruction of his sect, the Yun Hai Sect!
Nobody would have thought that Duan Tian Lang was capable of such a thing.
“The Yun Hai Sect disobeyed the order of the Imperial Clan and refused to send some of its disciples to the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue. This is what happens when one disobeys imperial orders. Therefore, the destruction of the Yun Hai Sect was a logical punishment for its defiance. Besides, today, you dare enter the Imperial City with the Chi Xie armored cavalry and cause trouble at the inauguration ceremony of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue. This is a serious offense.” said Duan Tian Lang while glancing at Liu Cang Lan coldly. He then added on the same ice-cold tone: “Besides, making the Chi Xie armored cavalry rebel against the Imperial Clan is another serious crime.”
“Rebel against the Imperial Clan?” the crowd was stupefied. Duan Tian Lang was suddenly accusing Liu Cang Lan of being a rebel. However, Duan Tian Lang and the ones close to him looked calm and didn’t seem too affected by the series of events.
“So, asking for justice is a crime. I see. I, Liu Cang Lan, have a clear conscience and have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to the Imperial Clan. However, I feel ashamed for my sect, for my brothers and sisters who died.”
“WITH OUR GENERAL UNTIL DEATH!” shouted the cavalry on their Chi Xie armored horses in unison. They had voluntarily followed their general. They were fearlessly defying death.
When the crowd heard the voice of the troops filled with righteous ardour and expressing loyalty to their general, they were all moved. The scene was so tragic and touching.
“What is the point in living such a life?” said Wen Ao Xue in the middle of the crowd. His eyes were filled with sorrow. He looked heartbroken.
Lin Feng was standing next to Wen Ao Xue. Under his bronze mask, his eyes were sparkling.
Liu Cang Lan had come to the Imperial City with his army of Chi Xie armored cavalry. He had come to fight for justice but it was also clear to him that he could die at any moment.
Liu Cang Lan took a deep and desolate breath and glanced at every single member of his army.
“Since it’s this way, today is going to be our last battle. Too bad that we’re on that square in the Imperial City and not on a battlefield.” said Liu Cang Lan while grabbing his bow. He then put an arrow in it and aimed at Duan Tian Lang. However, Duan Tian Lang looked extremely calm and peaceful. He even had an evil smile on the corner of his mouth.
At the same time, many strong cultivators moved towards Duan Tian Lang’s side at the same time and released some intensely powerful Qi which seemed to be lacerating the atmosphere.
The situation was explosive. A great war was about to break out.
“Wait, wait!” shouted someone in the crowd. Immediately after, a silhouette started walking out of the crowd.
That person was wearing a bronze mask. It was impossible to see their expression.
Liu Cang Lan glanced at him and was about to attack him when he recognized the bronze mask. He was stupefied. He put his bow down.
Lin Feng had prevented Liu Cang Lan from crippling his own cultivation in the Yun Hai Sect. Back then, he had understood that that person who was wearing a bronze mask had been Lin Feng. Therefore, at that moment, he was able to recognize him.
The entire Yun Hai Sect had sacrificed themselves to protect and save Lin Feng’s life.
“This has nothing to do with you. Get lost.” said Liu Cang Lan coldly.
As if Lin Feng hadn’t heard Liu Cang Han, he calmly shook his head and said: “General, let bygones be bygones. We cannot bring them back now. Why bother and come to the Imperial City?”
“For justice.” replied Liu Cang Lan. He wouldn’t have thought that Lin Feng would appear and start talking. Liu Cang Lan was already starting to be puzzled by this dilemma.
“Justice? But what is justice for the general is in other people’s eyes considered as suicide. You just looked like a general who wants to die, nothing more. If justice is what you think it is, then it worthless.” replied Lin Feng while shaking his head. He started moving towards Liu Cang Lan. Lin Feng then stood next to him and glanced at Duan Tian Lang.
“Duan Tian Lang, today is the inauguration of the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue. May I ask some questions?”
Duan Tian Lang wouldn’t have thought that Lin Feng would appear on that day. Considering that it was the inauguration day of the courtyard, he had to handle things cleanly and properly. Thus, he couldn’t refuse and then said: “Go ahead.”
“The Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue, why is it called the “Holy Courtyard”?”
“Because we want it to be a pure and holy place, a place where morally elevated people come to become great cultivators. People who are chosen to study at the courtyard should also have pure souls.” replied Duan Tian Lang.
“Hm, I see.” said Lin Feng while slightly nodding. He then pointed at the crowd and said: “In the middle of the crowd, there are people from the Hao Yue Sect, from the Ice and Snow Mountain Village as well as people from the Yun Hai Sect which you destroyed. Now you are saying that you want these people to rebel against their own sects to join the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue for the sake of purity and moral values. Is that right?” When Lin Feng finished talking, a complete silence invaded the entire area. Duan Tian Lang was stunned.
“A moment ago, you used the word “rebel” in a negative way but the Yun Hai Sect disciples who followed you after you destroyed their sect, are they not rebels of the Yun Hai Sect as well? But no, according to your logic, these rebels are considered as pure and holy because they joined the Holy Courtyard of Xue Yue. That’s a weird contradiction.” said Lin Feng to Duan Tian Lang who remained silent. Duan Tian Lang opened his mouth but no words came out. Lin Feng’s poignant words made him speechless.