Chapter 57: Against Overwhelming Odds
As I swam in the embrace of the universe, I came to a slight understanding of what s.p.a.ce was. Emptiness, yet fluffiness, the Universe was empty, but at the same time, it literally had everything in it, a conflicting duality, unlike life and death, this was the existence and none existence at the same time. For even if the majority of the Universe was empty s.p.a.ce, there literally was everything in it.
Food for thoughts I believed, and I saw through the universe, discovering more of what lay in its embrace, I could see worlds being born, and others destroyed, s.p.a.ce s.h.i.+fted, in the literal sense as it grew and shrank like the chest of a person, taking in a breath. The universe, though calm, silent, and forever grim and dark, had life in it, life in its darkness, and this life was amazing to behold.
Suddenly, my head started hurting and I was forced out of my meditative state.
A loud booming voice echoed within the paG.o.da.
"You have not faired greatly in understanding Law, but you have been given chance to improve in the future, take your newfound knowledge and use it when you encounter true application of Law." The words of the Laughing Slaughterer were spoken to us as Xi Son sighed and looked at me.
"Sadly, I couldn't understand the mysteries of the world, but fret not, for you have a low cultivation base and it was not expected of you anyway, let's move to the upper floor," Xi Son said.
And as he spoke, the upper room opened up, where the two of us received a small square stone, similar to the stone in the room, it was a law stone, definitely smaller and weaker, but it had Law in it, and I would study it later when I have the time.
Xi Son climbed up the stairs first, and just as I was about to follow him, I heard the Laughing Slaughterer's voice, unlike before when it was booming through the room, this time, it was sent directly into my head.
"Child, you searched through the universe, unguided by any thought, and in it, you saw the birth of new worlds and the destruction of others, your cultivation level is so far below your understanding that once you attain greater heights, you'll understand how gifted you truly are for such insights you currently have. Keep your sights focused, and do know, that martial might is great at killing foes, but a complete comprehensive domain can be the death of G.o.ds if one was fully capable of controlling and understanding the laws that created their domain. Might is right, but Wit binds might to its beddings."
The words the Laughing Slaughterer had spoken were like teachings a master would say to their disciple, though they didn't have a lot of information in them, I wholly understood what he meant, not by his words, but the underlying meaning.
The Laughing Slaughterer had given me advice, precious advice, and at the same time, he didn't outright say what I should do, lest he affects my path in the pursuit of the martial road. He showed me the way but didn't guide me through it, giving me the "Choice" to do so on my own.
Might is right, and that is the law of the cultivation worlds, only the strong are heard, but those with the ability to understand Law are able to bind the world's laws to their own, and in a world where Laws are bound, what can Might do? It can also be bent according to the laws superseding the world.
The Laughing Slaughterer's words were not many, but behind them, lay thousands upon thousands of years' worth of wisdom, and I was amazed not by the wisdom behind the Slaughterer's words, nor how did I even manage to understand so much from his words, but what amazed me the most, is how he used so few words, to convey so many meanings. A great mind…and a dangerous one to boots.
I turned and gave a nod to the empty air, it was a gesture, that I just felt would be right, thanks to a man that didn't exist here right now, but well deserving of it. There were few that would give advice freely. Even if the Laughing Slaughterer was not here, he was due his thanks, as it was his right.
I walked upstairs, to the fifth floor, only to find Xi Son standing still, not moving a single muscle forward in utter and complete shock.
"Cultivators, as this trial continues, you must know that there are always higher mountains and deeper seas, and here lays the example!" the Laughing Slaughterer's words came as I saw what was in front of me and I went giddy with excitement, the complete opposite of Xi Son who looked like he was about to pa.s.s out from fright.
And he was right to do so, as in front of us were a dozen terracotta-like puppets. They were almost exactly like X, but with some subtle differences. The material making them, though I didn't know what it was it looked st.u.r.dier than the one X was made off. They had full armor to top it off, and they wielded weapons that radiated spiritual energy like the flood gates.
"Fight your way through, if you wish to continue ascending, otherwise leave with your tail behind your backs!" The Laughing Slaughterer said as a door opened to the right of us.
"I wish to surrender the purist," Xi Son said without hesitation and began walking toward the door.
He looked back at my standing form and frowned, "Shen Bao, these are all Soul Formation level Puppets, I could barely handle one, but a dozen, I don't even dream of surviving for a half incense time. Don't do anything ras.h.!.+" Xi Son said.
"Right, Right," I said, and he was right, there was no way for me to win this battle, but d.a.m.n if I was not tempted to dismantle these puppets and know the difference between X and these puppets if they were compared to Soul Formation level Cultivators, which was higher than Xi Son, then what gave them such strength? I needed to know and that greed of knowledge caused me to hesitate into leaving.
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Just as I turned away from the puppets to leave, the Laughing Slaughterer's voice sounded once again.
Once I arrived at the barrier which hid the 'illusory' treasures, I slapped my right hand against the barrier to which it shuddered. Then I pulled a brush from my side pouch and began drawing inscriptions on the barrier.
My goal, simple, overwrite, overwhelm and overtax the barrier. It would have been foolish to attempt this with Xi Son behind me, but now that he is gone all the treasures are mine. Yes, all the treasures, as what I said to Xi Son before was nothing but a lie, a lie he would have immediately tore apart if he was not frustrated and exhausted from his attempts at breaking the barrier.
Because even if the barrier could replicate the aura of weapons from another floor to this one, I would have been able to see such an inscription, but there were none and I lied at Xi Son to prove intellectual superiority against his sight.
I kept overwriting inscriptions as fast as I could, but the barrier kept trying to defend itself, futile, as this was not an attacking Restriction, but rather a defensive one and lacked lethal force. It could do nothing as I kept writing commands on top of it, small commands that would be futile and destroyed by the barrier in no time, but the sheer amount of the small commands I wrote was enough to keep the barrier focused on removing my inscription to keep its integrity.
While I wrote the commands and the barrier kept removing them, I added something else. It was a simple random stroke at first. Then another, while I kept writing more inscriptions. The barrier didn't deem those strokes worthy of its attention as it kept its focus on the more annoying overtaxing inscriptions I kept adding.
This was the same thing I did to Elder Yun when I played my first game of Go against him using my Mind's Eye, divide and conquer. And I was dividing the inscription's focus as I drew those random but subtle random brush strokes.
But I was pressed for time, exhaustion was of no concern to me, as better be exhausted than dead, as I heard the sounds of the clash getting closer, no doubt X was being overwhelmed. d.a.m.n it, I don't want to lose X, he was the first puppet I ever made, he was MINE! And I didn't want to lose him, but I had no choice in the matter. G.o.d d.a.m.n it, I was distracted for a second and the barrier was about to retake control of our little game. But I focused harder, enough that I began seeing red, as more blood vessels popped in my eyes from the sheer speed that my eyes were moving from place to place.
A small pain, for greater gains, It kept me focused on an all-time high as my hand increased in speed, enough that if one were to look at my hands they'd see my hands blurring as they wrote more and more inscriptions piled on top of each other. And when I was about to strike the last brush, I heard the loud thud of metal against stone.
Turning I saw a haggard, Soldier Puppet, with various wounds, and poisoned needles stabbing through its form, even a couple of X's fingers were embedded into its eyes, but the Soldier was wholly fine and was standing with his sword drawn.
Fear gripped my heart, and sadness, for this means that X had lost, and this puppet was now going to kill me before I finished what I was going to do.
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