“How dare you, Junior!”
“Oh, I don’t dare, Senior!”
This strange interchange of words echoed about in all directions….
Up in midair was an old man wearing a crimson robe, whose hair was just as red as his clothing. There was no scale on his forehead, nor a horn. However, based on his aura, it was clear that among the powerful experts, he was one who could supersede the will of Heaven and Earth, and virtually burst with the aura of a Demonic cultivator.
This was… the Demonic Cultivator Horde’s Dao Realm Patriarch!
His arrival caused all of the nearby Demonic cultivators to tremble inwardly. It was as if they finally had someone to depend on, as if they were children who, after being bullied, saw their parents suddenly show up on the scene. Actually, in terms of seniority, the Dao Realm Patriarch really was like their parent.
However… neither they, nor the Dao Realm Patriarch who swept down furiously and was prepared to snatch up Meng Hao in a single swipe, could ever have imagined that he would respond in such a way.
From the perspective of the Demonic cultivators, it would make the most sense for Meng Hao to respond in an even more unyielding fashion. How could they have ever predicted that he would say what he did just now…?
Meng Hao’s voice was soft, even weak, causing strange expressions to appear on the onlookers’ faces. Even the ordinary cultivators of the Nine Seas God World were the same.
The only person who had a different reaction was Fan Dong’er, who suddenly stopped fighting with Sea Daughter Bei Yu, and quickly backed up. As soon as she saw the expression on Meng Hao’s face, her heart began to prickle, and she remembered how he had the exact same look on his face when they had made their bet earlier.
“Meng Hao, you rogue,” she thought, “you definitely have some evil plan up your sleeve.” Fan Dong’er was absolutely certain of this.
The descending Dao Realm Patriarch stared in shock for a moment, then continued to wave his hand, which seemed to interfere with natural law, and materialize a gigantic, illusory hand, which snatched toward Meng Hao.
Meng Hao did nothing to dodge, and simply allowed the hand to grab toward him. Suddenly, a cold snort rang out from Meng Hao’s side. Granny Nine appeared, stepped forward, and tapped the gigantic hand.
No noise could be heard, but two natural laws seemed to have collided, and massive roaring sounds echoed out in the minds of all present.
The huge hand collapsed, and the Demonic Dao Realm expert gave a muffled grunt. Granny Nine’s face drained of blood, and she looked up with a cold gleam in her eyes.
“Enough,” she said. “Your Demonic Cultivator Horde has raised enough of a racket already. Aren’t you finished yet?” Suddenly, she made a grasping motion, causing a dragon-head cane to appear in her hand. She tapped it down onto the ground, and rumbling sounds could be heard as Essence power erupted out, with Granny Nine at the center.
Simultaneously, Ling Yunzi materialized, and Godmaster stepped out of thin air. Another Demonic Dao Realm expert appeared, as did the other two Dao Realm experts, the man and the woman.
The appearance of all these mighty Patriarchs instantly caused the rest of the disciples of the Nine Seas God World to prostrate themselves on hands and knees, hearts pounding.
Meng Hao was the only one who remained standing, leaning up against the stone cliff face.
“We had an agreement,” growled the red-haired Dao Realm Patriarch. “Therefore, regarding the things that happened outside of the sect, my Demonic Cultivator Horde was in the wrong. I’ll provide an explanation about that later. We will also do everything in our power to assist in the opening of the Windswept Realm. We will even accept the burden of all the resources necessary!” The red-haired Demonic Dao Realm expert then turned to look at Meng Hao.
“However, this boy slaughtered disciples of the Demonic Cultivator Horde, and inside the sect at that! There WILL be an accounting for this!”
Granny Nine frowned and sighed inwardly. The inner workings of the Nine Seas God World were very complex, with the different factions struggling for supremacy. Sometimes, the only thing that could be done was to sigh. Currently, her eyes flashed coldly, and she was just about to respond, when Meng Hao popped a handful of medicinal pills into his mouth and then cut her off.
“Hey, now, Senior, did you just say that the person who killed the Demonic cultivators out there was ME? Hey! Why the false accusations? I didn’t kill them! Really! I didn’t. Who saw me do it?” Meng Hao looked very offended as he continued to munch on the medicinal pills, causing his cultivation base to gradually recover. Inwardly, he was smiling coldly. When going all in, sometimes flexibility was necessary. To blindly refuse to be flexible was simply stupid. Meng Hao had his principles, but those principles didn’t apply to his enemies.
His words instantly enraged the prostrated Demonic cultivators.
“I saw it with my own eyes! You killed lots of my fellow sect members!!”
“Dammit! Everyone here could see that it was you!”
The Demonic cultivators appeared to be on the verge of going mad, as if they had never seen someone act this shamefully. Meng Hao cleared his throat and spread his hands innocently.
Sighing, he said, “Even if you saw with your own eyes, that doesn’t mean much. In any case, it wasn’t me who killed them. Maybe the person you saw was simply disguised to look like me? That’s most likely what happened. In any case, you need to stop it with these false accusations!” Meng Hao seemed to be getting angry as he explained matters. Even as he spoke, he continued to pop medicinal pills into his mouth. Off to the side, Granny Nine looked at him with a strange expression, then cleared her throat and prepared to speak.
All of the Dao Realm experts up in midair, including Ling Yunzi and Godmaster, were watching the scene with odd expressions on their faces. As for the red-haired Demonic Dao Realm expert, he was incensed, and before Granny Nine could speak, smiled an icy smile.
“Never before has anyone dared to speak with such insolence to ME!” he said slowly. “You say that you didn’t kill my Demonic cultivators? Well then, let me ask you, whose Immortal’s cave are you in right now? How did you get inside? I personally witnessed you abduct Long Tianhai just now! Could it be that I was hallucinating?” His eyes flickered with killing intent, as he very much wanted to see how Meng Hao would possibly respond to this accusation. If Meng Hao tried to insinuate that he was having hallucinations, then he would quickly discover the consequences of trifling with a Dao Realm expert.
“Oh, THAT,” replied Meng Hao, smiling. He quickly clasped hands and bowed to the Patriarch with a look of extreme sincerity on his face.
“Patriarch, I think we have a bit of a misunderstanding here. Actually, Fellow Daoist Long and I became good friends the instant we met. However, we recently made a bet that had a specific time limit. I just came here today to tell him that I decided to accept the bet!
“Unfortunately, he was in secluded meditation, and I happen to be an impatient person so I let myself in. I kind of damaged his Immortal’s cave in the process. That’s my fault, Senior.” He turned to Granny Nine with an apologetic look and bowed deeply. “Patriarch Granny Nine, I’m willing to pay for all the damages!”
Granny Nine cleared her throat but didn’t say anything in response.
The red-haired old man stared at Meng Hao, and his smile grew even icier.
“If that’s really what happened, then why did you take him captive?!”
“Patriarch, I was worried that he would back out of the bet! But, now that you’re here, I can rest easy. He might try to back out, but the entire Demonic Cultivator Horde won’t back out, right?!”
Inwardly, Meng Hao was chuckling coldly. Just now, the Demonic Patriarch had arrived too quickly, leaving him no time to extract the dragon’s heart, leaving him no other choice than to take Long Tianhai captive. Clearing his throat again, he took out a medicinal pill bottle and poured the contents into his mouth. Everyone looked on with strange expressions.
“Patriarch, if you don’t believe me,” he continued, “you can ask anyone here about the wager between me and Long Tianhai. The bet was about whether or not I could get into the top 100 of the nine golden gate stone steles. If I did, he would represent the Demonic Cultivator Horde to pay me 1,300,000,000 Immortal jades and three Dao weapons!”
Almost immediately, some of the Demonic cultivators in the area who were slow on the uptake began to shout in rage.
“That’s a load of crap! The bet between you and Elder Brother Long was to get into the top 10 of the golden gate stone steles! Also, the stakes were 300,000,000 Immortal jades, not 1,300,000,000, and there weren’t any Dao weapons involved! Also, if you lost, you had to give up your place in the Echelon!!”
In response to this, the red-haired old man’s face darkened. He was well aware of the matter of the bet, but he had never imagined that Meng Hao would bring it up.
Because Meng Hao had been in secluded meditation for a month and not given the nine Sea Realm Demons his response, they had spread word about the matter throughout the entire sect.
The red-haired old man stared coldly at Meng Hao. He was irritated at Meng Hao’s glib use of the tongue, but he had to admit that in terms of taking advantage of the circumstances, he had never seen anybody do so quite so well as Meng Hao.
He was capable of reducing Meng Hao to a bloody paste at any time, and yet couldn’t do so. Meng Hao seemed to be incredibly gifted at using all of the complicated circumstances to tie other people up into knots, even people vastly more powerful than him. Through various means, he checked them in place, ensuring that they couldn’t attack.
The old man felt as though he had infinite power that he simply couldn’t unleash.
He was unaware, of course, that when Meng Hao entered the cultivation world, he had joined a sect called the Reliance Sect. The theory of that sect was something that Meng Hao had long since imprinted onto his heart.
People should do everything in their power to find someone or something to rely on. Although that wasn’t an absolute truth, still… when you were in a situation in which you weren’t powerful enough, it made a lot of sense!
“That bet is a personal matter between you and Long Tianhai. If you lose, you have to hand over your Echelon qualifications. Set Long Tianhai free at once!” The red-haired old man seemed to be losing his patience. At this point, Meng Hao’s eyes gleamed with a cold light as he stared back at the old man.
“Let’s forget Long Tianhai for the moment. Patriarch, Senior, I would like to ask a question of the entire Demonic Cultivator Horde. Are you people even cultivators? Do you know what the biggest taboo among cultivators is?!
“What exactly is your relationship with us cultivators of the Ninth Mountain and Sea? Do you think that as long as someone isn’t a member of the Demonic Cultivator Horde, you can kill them with impunity?!
“You hate me? Fine, no problem. You can make a move on me, and if I die while fighting back, then nobody will think twice. But, let me ask you, Patriarch, and the rest of the Demonic Cultivator Horde, what is the meaning OF THIS!?” He slapped his bag of holding, causing Chu Yuyan to appear in his arms.
Her face was pale white, and she was clearly unconscious and incredibly weak. It was truly a pitiful sight.
“This is a dear friend from my hometown. She joined the Kunlun Society, and is still a disciple there. However, in order to deal with me, your Demonic Cultivator Horde kidnapped her and brought her here. You put her at death’s door and even poisoned her!
“Fellow Daoists of the Nine Seas God World, if your friends or family were tortured in front of your very eyes, used as a threat against you, would you stand for it!?
“What is the biggest taboo for cultivators, the most forbidden thing in the cultivation world? It’s THIS!
“If everyone did things like this, then the world of cultivation would be thrown into chaos! I provoked the Demonic cultivators, and they kidnapped and tried to kill my dear friend! What happens if one of you provokes them? They’ll likely do the same thing, won’t they!? It’s a vicious cycle! Fellow cultivators, which of us could ever stand for such a thing!?” Meng Hao’s words echoed out into the ears of all the surrounding cultivators, who seemed to be profoundly moved.