Chapter 35 Are You Weak?

'Tai Yin... she is probably the most dangerous Gu Master in the new batch of disciples. Her posture is unruly, and her gaze is sharp, befitting that of a Sword Path Gu Master. Offensively, none of the other Gu Masters her age are her match. Defensive and supportive Sword Path methods are uncommon, so I wonder what she will do when faced with Song Pei or Fang Kai, both of whom possess a similar depth?'.

While Xuanyuan was confident against any Gu Master that wasn't the descendant of an Elder, against those four Elder descendants, Xuanyuan had to admit, he was lacking in terms of combat experience.

Yu Xiaolong was the son of a wealthy Rank 3 Gu Master in Earth Soul City, and his strength was above average in comparison to someone like Luo Le, or Bing Ti. He was similarly lacking in terms of combat experience but possessed powerful offensive Gu which helped bridge the gap.

Someone like Bing Ti, who knew how to kite beasts to avoid them using their strengths was the opposite. He clearly had some experience hunting or killing beasts, but lacked powerful Gu to strengthen himself further.

Those Elder descendants were not lacking in either, and didn't just make Xuanyuan wary.

Yu Xiaolong sat beside Xuanyuan, and Lu Guo behind him, the three young men chatting with each other about their previous matches.

"It was quite unlucky for you Xiaolong to be placed at Xuanyuan like that. Not to mention how brutal he was with his attack! You're lucky that my older sister isn't here Xuanyuan, believe me, she would give you an earful for something like that!".

Xuanyuan rolled his eyes, ignoring Lu Guo's words.

His sister was definitely a valuable ally to have, being a member of the Burning Soul Hall, but Lu Rong was nothing special especially considering he seemed to have annoyed Elder Li, the Elder in charge of the Burning Soul Hall. 

Lu Rong was a member of the Burning Soul Hall, which was the only Soul Hall in the Ancient Soul Sect which didn't require its members to be Rank 3 or higher in order to join. While every other Soul Hall, like Earth Soul Hall, Dark Soul Hall, Wood Soul Hall and even Refinement Soul Hall required at least a Rank 3 Gu Master cultivation, Burning Soul Hall had but one requirement.

Those who join must possess righteousness in their hearts.

Lu Rong, and the few other members that Xuanyuan had met were... annoyingly righteous. 

Not to the level of a religious fanatic, but they certainly were incapable of being reasoned with. 

Xuanyuan could understand the perspective of the demonic path, especially from a viewpoint like Fang Yuan's. To him, everything in the world was transient, temporary. All things in the universe were destined to die, humans, trees, beasts and even mundane creatures such as pigs and ants.

If the ending of everything in creation was predetermined, then no choices ever truly mattered. Fang Yuan's emotions gradually dried up over years of hard work with no reward in sight. With efforts being met with betrayal and love only to be met with death.

Eventually, only a desire for eternity remained. If nothing else mattered in this world, then reaching immortality would change that. It would mean the validation of his entire existence, he could prove, not just to others, not just to the World itself, but also to him, that "I" truly existed.

He would persevere through rain and hail, through thunder and lightning. He would persevere until he reached eternity.

It was an honorable goal, even if he disregarded everything else to reach it.

Xuanyuan didn't have the same experiences as Fang Yuan. He couldn't rid himself of his emotions, his desires, his tears, quite so easily. Even if he wanted to, part of him couldn't help but think back to the powerful Rank 9 Gu in the Legends Of Ren Zu.

Love Gu and Hatred Gu were two such examples. The former, allowed a mortal to resist the blows of a Gu Immortal, while the latter, if the Legends of Ren Zu were to be believed, allowed Ren Zu to shatter Blue Heaven.

Other forms of Gu that Xuanyuan only realized existed after reading the Legends Of Ren Zu for himself were Sin Gu and Virtue Gu. These two Gu were always found beside each other, fighting violently each trying to kill the other. 

"In the Legend Of Ren Zu, Black Night Eclipsing Sky was born from Ren Zu's shadow and blood. It was here in the Lightless Abyss, a place which nurtured shadows born without Light, was the shadow of Man created here. Black Night Eclipsing Sky, born from the Darkness of the Lightless Abyss, the Shadow and Blood Of Ren Zu, and the Light of Moon Gu, carried his own speck of light and dark within him".

"From the moment he was born, Black Night Eclipsing Sky carried within him the memories of his father's shadow. He could remember everything his father had, everything he had seen, everything he had touched, everything he had felt".

"He understood Ren Zu's desire for freedom after realizing he was trapped by the endless web of Fate. He understood the sorrow and misery Ren Zu felt after watching his children die one by one. He understood the importance of Hope, the power of Rules and Regulations, the importance of Wisdom and Strength, and the difference between Truth and Lies".

"Looking around, Black Night Eclipsing Sky knew everything that his father had experienced before leaving him in the Lightless Abyss. His father had been torn apart, a dissonance created between his Self and his Shadow. Moments after just being born, he had been abandoned, left to fend for himself amidst shadows that were born without Light".

"Father?, he asked, "Where have you gone?", but Black Night Eclipsing Sky received no answer.

"A sharp pain cut at his heart, and unconsciously, Black Night Eclipsing Sky knew that this was "sadness". His father had once experienced sadness for himself, after losing his children, losing himself, losing his way, gradually growing insane".

"Despite having just been born, Black Night Eclipsing Sky new the difference between right and wrong, good and evil, sin and virtue".

"As a result, Sin Gu and Virtue Gu buried themselves deep within the heart of Black Night Eclipsing Sky. One glowed a brilliant golden colour, purifying and searing away all the excess and malevolent thoughts in his heart. While the other hummed a dark and violent melody, stoking the baser desires within Black Night Eclipsing Sky. Both of them, drew a sharp divide within Black Night Eclipsing Sky".

"He wouldn't realize until much later, that he wasn't sure if he himself existed, or was just the combination of Sin Gu and Virtue Gu. He himself was the Shadow of Man, illusory and transient. Nothing more than the Shadow of his Father...".

Xuanyuan's eyes narrowed at that particular line, trying to think of the profundities behind it. He had thought about it quite a number of times, late at night, reading the Legend Of Ren Zu just has he was about to fall asleep for the night.

In the end, Xuanyuan just let out a sigh, leaning his head back and drawing the attention of Yu Xiaolong and Lu Guo. The former just looked at his new friend, tilting his head slightly.

"You alright Xuanyuan? Something the matter?".

Xuanyuan just closed his eyes before asking both of his friends a question.

"Do you two believe that Love Gu, or even Hatred Gu, Sin Gu or Virtue Gu exist? We read about them in the Legends Of Ren Zu, but, how much of it is actually true? Does Love Gu truly possess an infinite amount of power? Can Sin Gu truly devour sins? Can Virtue Gu actually steal the virtues of others?"

Yu Xiaolong and Lu Guo both looked at each other and blinked, the latter shrugging his shoulders at the sudden question.

"In the Legend Of Ren Zu, Sin Gu can devour the sins of other people right? Black Night Eclipsing Son used it to destroy a part of Green Heaven didn't he? Something about releasing the desires of Man upon the Heavens And Earth. But it can't actually be real right? I mean, a single Gu which could destroy an entire Continent? There shouldn't be a single Gu, Immortal or not which can do such a thing".

"Even the 10 Great Mystical Gu, or even the 10 Great Demonic Gu can't do such a thing! And even then, Virtue Gu is considered 3rd on the 10 Great Demonic Gu list. Sin Gu is ranked 4th! They are considered a pair, yet, Virtue Gu is much more dangerous for some reason".

Xuanyuan lifted his eyebrow, not knowing that piece of information. Sin Gu was shown in the Legends Of Ren Zu, but the effects of Virtue Gu were not. But for some reason, Virtue Gu was considered even more blasphemous by the Righteous Path than Sin Gu.

"Virtue Gu is the 3rd ranked Gu on the 10 Great Demonic Gu list? I didn't know that", said Yu Xiaolong.

Lu Guo nodded.

"My sister told me all of the Immortal Gu which are considered demonic by the Ten Great Sects. The list goes beyond just the top ten, but in particular, the top ten are all all taken extremely seriously. I heard that the Demon Judgement Board personally takes action against Gu Immortals with one of these Gu in their possession".

Xuanyuan unconsciously nodded, thankful that he brought this up.

He didn't pay attention too much about the politics in the mortal world, thinking primarily about his future after he became a Rank 5 Gu Master. By that stage he should be thinking about his Immortal Ascension, and how to obtain Derivation Gu and the Primordial Domain at the bottom of Crazed Demon Cave.

He almost didn't hear Elder Chang call out his name, and he didn't even hear the name of his opponent, until Yu Xiaolong nudged his arm.

Frowning slightly, he turned and looked at his friend, seeing both of them expressions change as they pointed towards his next opponent.

Xuanyuan turned and looked towards where Yu Xiaolong was pointing. His fellow Rank 2 Gu Master suppressed a gulp as he narrowed his eyes at familiar figure of his next opponent. Her full bodied figure was quite eye catching in comparison to the rest of the female Gu Masters in the arena, and the smile on her face was equally as enchanting.

Xuanyuan raised an eyebrow before glancing towards Elder Chang, who just smiled, returning Xuanyuan's stare with an equally blasé expression. Elder Luo had a similarly strange expression on his face, but neither the Sect Leader, nor Elder Kong did anything about it.

Just looking at those two in particular act without much care for Xuanyuan's opponent, made him want to sigh, but suppressed it before standing up, walking towards his platform.

'... In three fights I've had to fight against two Rank 2 Gu Masters. There can't be more than a dozen in our entire batch of new disciples and yet now I have to fight Tai Yin mere moments after meeting her gaze? I'm being put on display...'.

Xuanyuan glanced at the three Gu Immortals sitting in the crowd. Immortal Chu just smiled at him, giving him a graceful nod, while the two female Gu Immortals either side of him just gazed at Xuanyuan expressionlessly.

He wasn't sure if the Immortal with scarred hands had anything to do with this, but he knew that their presence alone was enough to make any Elder sway their position of him.

Xuanyuan wanted the inheritance of Limitless that the Ancient Soul Sect had in their possession. In order to do that, he needed to become the Ancient Soul Sect's next Abyssal Child. If he had to defeat Tai Yin, Song Pei or any of the other Elder descendants, he'd bite their ears off if he had to.

Walking up to the stage, Xuanyuan felt the gazes of countless others on his body. By this stage, he had gotten used to the stares, and faint whispers spoken behind his back. Xuanyuan didn't concern himself with the affairs of children and idle gossip, focusing the entirety of his attention solely on Tai Yin.

The beautiful raven haired girl tied her hair up in a simple ponytail, highlighting the skin around her neck and the blush on her cheeks. The young woman just continued to stare at Xuanyuan, her eyes roaming all over his figure, including the long dark shadow that followed him.

"... You're even better looking that the pictures that Huo Jin spread about you, you know that?", she spoke.

Xuanyuan just nodded, his shadow mimicking his actions.

"Thank you. You too are... well, it goes without saying".

Tai Yin placed a small strand of hair behind her ear, giving Xuanyuan a small huff. For a moment, the girl seemed to act her age, but the glint in her eyes betrayed her.

"A girl can never be without compliments Little Yuan. Even if something is obvious, a girl will never refuse to hear about how beautiful she is".

Xuanyuan suppressed an eyeroll.

"Hearing it over and over again, don't you know that all men just want one thing from you? They don't care about your likes and dislikes, your favorite color or your favorite food. All they want, is what they can see... Little Yin".

Tai Yin, placed her hand up to her mouth and suppressed a giggle, even distracting the Rank 3 Gu Master referee for a moment. The older Tai sibling, just nodded unceasingly, her gaze becoming sharp, and the unmistakable aura of sword qi leaking from her pores.

It didn't use primeval essence, so the referee didn't say anything, only snapping out of his trance and glaring at Tai Yin.

The girl just waved the referee off, her eyes still focused on Xuanyuan.

"Are you the same then? Just like the rest of them?".

Xuanyuan raised an eyebrow, shrugging his shoulders lightly.

"It depends... are you weak, Tai Yin?".

The girl finally showed a change in expression, her mouth becoming taut, and her eyes narrowing at the young man standing opposite her. The lovely and beautiful flush in her cheeks had vanished, leaving nothing but anger, hidden behind a layer of smooth, unblemished, pale skin.

Tai Yin adjusted her stance glaring at Xuanyuan with a strange mixture of anger and curiosity in her eyes.

"Come over here and find out, Xuanyuan".