C106 – Pavilion Master City Lord
Beyond the Sword Singing Platform, there was a palpable buzz in the air.
Yi Dong swallowed hard and asked hesitantly, “May I inquire about your friend’s cultivation level, Fellow Daoist?”
Song Ru appeared somewhat perplexed as she responded, “Fifth level of Foundation Establishment?”
She blinked, gazing up at the Sword Pavilion above and feeling a hint of disbelief.
Could this person truly be at the Foundation Establishment stage?
Yi Dong’s vision seemed to dim for a moment. Fifth level of Foundation Establishment. A cultivator from elsewhere who had brought a mortal to Jolcana Road? What was even more astounding was how swiftly they had arrived, not even taking half a cup of tea’s time.
What kind of deity was this?
Yi Dong’s face showed signs of suffocation, but his communication talisman suddenly lit up. Upon discovering that it was the Law Enforcing Elder of the Sword Pavilion, he promptly infused spiritual energy into the talisman and relayed, “Elder Tang, just a moment ago, an outsider at the Foundation Establishment stage entered the Sword Pavilion via Jolcana Road…”
An elderly voice emanated from the communication talisman. “I am already aware… That individual is currently within the Sword Pavilion, and even the Pavilion Master has been alerted. Your response this time is quite timely. Events have unfolded rapidly. Keep the cultivators outside in check. I guarantee you won’t be demoted to the outer sect.”
Even the Pavilion Master had been alarmed…
Yi Dong quickly acknowledged, saying, “Yes, yes, I understand.”
Elder Tang sighed, “Alas, you were too timid during the Jolcana Road trial; otherwise, your future prospects would have been more promising.”
Yi Dong offered an apologetic smile and expressed his commitment. Following Elder Tang’s earnest guidance, he assured that he would do his utmost and closed the communication talisman.
He turned to the disciples of the Sword Pavilion, his face filled with determination, and instructed, “Did you all hear that? Go and maintain order, pacify the crowd, and complete the registrations properly.”
Then, he addressed Song Ru, “My apologies for the delay. I will proceed with your registration first. It’s worth mentioning that two of Yu Xu’s disciples have already registered here, Song Zhen and Song Yi… May I inquire about your Daoist name?”
Song Ru was lost in thought, pondering how this person seemed to have brought a cat along. When she snapped back to reality, she replied, “My Daoist name is Song Ru.”
Yi Dong’s mouth twitched. A cat? Not only had the person brought a mortal but also a cat? Did they think this was some kind of outing?
Yet, considering the brief time it took, as smooth as flowing water, it did indeed resemble an outing…
“Ah, Song Ru… Hmm? Could you be the fifth disciple of Eyun?”
Yi Dong was taken aback. When he saw Song Ru nodding, he realized that this was no ordinary situation. The Tide-watching Sword-listening Conference was certainly going to be eventful this time…
Unbeknownst to Guo Fan, the commotion outside had reached a fever pitch.
While he had anticipated that his journey on the Jolcana Road might garner some attention, he hadn’t expected it to escalate to such a daunting level.
Guo Fan had ventured down the Jolcana Road numerous times within the game to complete this challenging task, so he possessed a deep familiarity with the route. Prior to employing any skills, he had a clear plan in his mind. Moreover, Sword Pavilion’s Jolcana Road was never a test of one’s cultivation prowess but rather a test of one’s courage.
His attributes, agility, and mobility skills were consistently top-notch. He had diligently acquired a variety of beginner skills, supplemented his knowledge with guidebooks, and allocated additional points to enhance his mobility skills—this included attack speed and escape techniques, which proved to be quite practical.
Despite the perils of the Jolcana Road, Guo Fan viewed it as a matter of seizing opportunities.
Furthermore, he had pondered it in the morning and concluded that taking the initiative to seek an opportunity was preferable to a passive approach. After all, Lang Qing was…
“Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!” The young man in his grip shut his eyes and let out a piercing scream. Guo Fan sighed in resignation as he gently set the young man down on the ground and lightly patted his head.
“Ah…?” Lang Qing suddenly snapped back to reality. He scanned his surroundings and felt the stable ground beneath his feet. He breathed a sigh of relief, his face drenched in cold sweat, and his strength nearly drained.
Guo Fan’s expression shifted subtly. In the game, the situation wasn’t this serious, but there had indeed been a message that read, “This place is really high.” It seemed that this individual had a fear of heights.
Lang Qing wiped the perspiration from his forehead. “Senior, that was just… too fast. I couldn’t handle it…”
“What the heck… If you can’t contribute to the conversation, then it’s best to keep it brief!”
The widely circulated image of the “Vision Lang Qing” was indeed not a hoax. But why did this guy have to be like this? It was even more unsettling considering his sun-kissed, sincere visage. Hey!
Guo Fan sensed that something was amiss in the atmosphere.
Fortunately, the inner circle of the Sword Pavilion had been alerted in advance, and a group of individuals had come out to witness the remarkable person who had traversed the Jolcana Road in a mere half-cup of tea’s time. Leading the way was a servant adorned in a light green robe who approached and inquired, “The pavilion master is awaiting your presence in the pavilion. He is aware of the situation. Please follow me.”
Guo Fan nodded and expressed his gratitude, saying, “Thank you for your assistance.”
This servant held a special position. He was the personal sword servant of the Sword Pavilion’s master, signifying that he had garnered the master’s attention on this occasion. In essence, it made no difference. A disciple of a 9-star swordsmith had returned to the Sword Pavilion, creating quite a stir, but Guo Fan was currently the focal point.
Lang Qing cast a fearful glance behind him, his face pale, and quickly followed suit.
Among the twelve peaks of the Sword Pavilion, the main peak stood at the end of a brief mountain path. An imposing structure adorned with intricate carvings was evident, extending outwards towards a cliff that overlooked the White Dragon River below. On the opposite side, another mountain peak loomed, shrouded in rolling mist, with countless interconnected chains spanning the gap.
One could vaguely discern the location of the sword-forging furnace on the cliff. Thousands of apertures emitted a crimson glow on the dark precipice, causing ripples to break into fragments and transform into billowing white mist.
The current master of the Sword Pavilion was none other than Gong Wei.
As a 9-star swordsmith within the Sword Pavilion, he had once been hailed as the “Lord of Swordsmiths.” This title reflected his role as the patriarch of swordsmiths, underscoring his unparalleled mastery in the art of forging swords.
Guo Fan gazed at the elderly man seated in a cross-legged posture at the summit. He appeared frail, his garments loose, and he exuded no airs of authority. Instead, he resembled an ordinary old man on the brink of life’s end, rather than the master of a prestigious pavilion.
“Greetings, Pavilion Master.” Guo Fan respectfully bowed, and Lang Qing followed suit.
Gong Wei raised his head, a faint smile gracing his lips. “No need for such formality. Please, take a seat, both of you.”
Guided by the sword servant, Guo Fan took a seat at a table. Lang Qing cast a curious glance at the current Sword Pavilion master, and his eyes widened in astonishment.
He observed that the Sword Pavilion master’s eyes were concealed beneath a shroud of white, veiled in a cloudy gray.
The master was, in fact, blind!
Lang Qing was so startled that he nearly lost his balance. He instinctively reached out to the table’s edge to steady himself. “I apologize! I apologize! I acted thoughtlessly!”
Gong Wei waved his hand dismissively and remarked, “No need to worry… Did my appearance startle you?”
Lang Qing quickly shook his head. “Not at all. It’s just rather unexpected.”
Gong Wei chuckled and said, “You see, your young companion doesn’t find it unusual. Why should you?”
Lang Qing paused, scratching his head with a sheepish grin. “You’re absolutely right…”
However, by his words, it seemed that Gong Wei was already aware of Lang Qing’s true identity.
The Sword Pavilion master had a tragic past, born into a swordsmithing family within the Sword Pavilion. In his youth, he had lost his sight due to a vengeful act. Nevertheless, he dedicated himself wholeheartedly to the art of swordsmithing, ascending to the rank of a nine-star swordsmith.
Gong Wei remained amiable and extended his hospitality to Lang Qing. After a pleasant conversation, he arranged lodging for Lang Qing and provided the necessary qualifications for the upcoming competition. He also inquired about how Guo Fan had traversed Jolcana Road, offering praise, which fostered a harmonious atmosphere.
However, their discussion was interrupted as a messenger arrived with news, “Master, Master Duan, City Lord Fang requests your presence.”
The title of “master” was an honorific for a swordsmith.
Within the Sword Pavilion, there was only one individual surnamed Duan who commanded respect from others—the swordsmith serving the city lord.