554 Karma Frui

    The string of twinkling stars gleamed in the darkness, its air of immense and abstruse mysteries making it so that no one dared to approach or enter it.

    Since he had already come this far, it would be unthinkable for him to return empty-handed. Besides, there was also a good chance that the elegant yet devilish middle-aged man had destroyed the Karma Fruit Formation.

    Furthermore, he had mastered the incomplete version of Fruits of Karma and a karma secret technique. He had also pondered over related details of the Seed of All Karma of the Heavenly Golden Scripture. The expertise of his main practice, Eight Nine Mysteries, lied in avoiding disasters. When it came to Way of Karma within the boundaries of the Exterior realm, he would definitely consider himself an expert. Therefore, even if the Karma Fruit Formation was in good order, he was fairly confident in passing through it. More importantly, he had the greatest trump card in being able to end this at any time and return!

    If he did not directly engage in a battle, Six Samsara could still summon him even if he was trapped in the formation!

    Like usual, Meng Qi had his sword in his left hand and saber in his right. His pace was neither quick nor slow as he traveled along the mountain path to the fifth floor.

    Everything turned abruptly dim around him, the darkness stretching as far as his eyes could see. Meng Qi felt as if he had fallen into the center of a vast, boundless universe.

    He initiated the heart sutras of Fruits of Karma, secretly using Sikong Tu's karma secret technique. His vision suddenly turned blank, where he failed to find the bottom at just a glance, and the fascinating darkness interweaved with bright lights as the nearby scenery reflected each other.

    Each of the strands of karma floating in the scope of his awareness surfaced on his mind, carrying with them an indescribable sense of danger. It seemed that there would be unimaginably devastating consequences if he allowed them to come near or attach themselves to him.

    Suddenly, he suddenly felt an inexplicable breath soaring from the depths of the formation. It fell into resonance with his heart sutras of Fruits of Karma. The wonderful premonition that had emerged mysteriously and inexorably once again came to him.

    This was the chance that he had been looking for!

    Meng Qi knew without a shadow of a doubt that the item to suppress the eye of the formation was his chance at completing his cultivation of Fruits of Karma!

    He exhaled, expelling his happiness, apprehension, and shock along with the breath that left him. His expression adopted a mask of icy calmness.

    "The treasure of the eye of the formation still exists. Looks like the middle-aged man from earlier didn't go through this formation. Or if he did, the formation is beyond his capability to destroy..." Meng Qi secretly speculated. Using his heart sutras, he observed the floating strands of karma in his surroundings and tried to plan his way forward.

    He suddenly moved but instead of flying high, he traveled like there was a dragon under his feet. The force carried him as he weaved through the strands of karma, as if he knew this place like the back of his hand.

    In the beginning, the strands of karma were scarce and there was a great distance between each of them. The speed at which they fluttered was also slow. Meng Qi felt relaxed all over, the feeling triumphing even what he would feel if he were to be sauntering. The more packed the strands of karma were, the faster they moved and eventually, they resembled a gleaming rain formed out of meteors shooting across empty skies.

    Meng Qi's heart sutras of Fruits of Karma were in full operation. He dared not to restrain his secret technique even by a little and continually moved forward or transformed into a creature like a mouse in advance. He would move through the gaps of the strands of karma carefully. If there were bystanders who saw him right now, he might be mistaken as a ghost!

    When he was near the eye of the formation, the strands of karma transformed into a genuine drizzle that gleamed and shimmered, looking dreamy and enthralling. If he was not careful, then a 'drop of the rain' might accidentally fall on him!

    Meng Qi became increasingly cautious as he moved up and down, desperately showcasing his ability to nimbly dodge and weave. Simultaneously, he used all his strength to sense every strand of karma, determining their level of danger. He tried his best to pick the spot that was least terrifying so that in the end, even if he could not dodge the strands, he could try contending with them.

    The thought had just come to him when he suddenly felt a piercing sense of danger!

    He saw a group of strands of karma that, for some inexplicable reason, defied the 'regular pattern of motion' and deviated from the orbit. They stopped in front of him, blocking his path.

    The strands cornered him in all directions, front and back, up and down. They floated toward him, giving him no space to dodge any of them.

    Even if he morphed into a mouse, it would be near impossible to travel through the narrow gaps.

    In that brief moment that balanced the fine line between life and death, Meng Qi resisted the idea to abandon this. Relying purely on heart sutras and his secret technique, he managed to identify the different danger levels of every strand of karma flying in his face.

    "That strand poses the least danger!" Without any time to ponder his decision, he instantly morphed into a mouse and took the initiative to turn toward the strand on his left.

    When the strand came into contact with his skin, his head instantly spun. The scene before his eyes changed as the darkness faded away to reveal a great mountain that extended into the distance.

    Meng Qi found himself in the body of that elegant middle-aged man with a devilish charm. As he stood leisurely on the peak of the mountain, he was dressed in a green robe with his hands behind his back

    Just as he was about to leave, an old monk dressed in a yellow frock with a red cassock draped over his shoulders appeared out of thin air. His eyebrows drooped so low that they fell against his cheek. In his left hand was a cane with nine tin rings and in his left, he was dragging a Buddha's relic that radiated a dark golden glaze.

    "Abbot Kong Wen?"

    The appearance of the old man was etched deeply into Meng Qi's mind. He was the first Dharmakaya master that Meng Qi had ever met: Kong Wen, Dragon-subduing Arhat of Shaolin Temple!

    Kong Wen's face was solemn and dignified. He clenched his grasp on the Buddha's relic into a fist and punched straight at Meng Qi!

    The punch was brimming with Zen Philosophies, giving people a feeling of self-sufficiency. It was unpredictable yet also deliberate.

    Dragon-subduing Divine Fist was the result of combining the True Dragon of the Exterior as well as own's own 'dragon' to develop one of the 18 internal techniques of Flower-pinching Finger. It could demonstrate the Golden Body of the Dragon-subduing Arhat and help one become the Kassapa Dharmakaya.

    The ancestral teacher of the sixth generation of Shaolin, Yuan Kong, had created the skill after cultivating the Flower-pinching Finger as a shortcut for future generations. Even though it was difficult to learn, it was still much better than trying to directly master Flower-pinching Finger.

    The Buddha Aura gleamed with a golden glow, untouched by the wind. Kong Wen seemed to have thrown the punch from the bottom of his heart, leaving Meng Qi with no way to dodge it. He could only watch the punch strike him on the forehead.

    The sky spun, the earth went round, and the sounds of meditation suddenly appeared everywhere. Meng Qi's Vital Spirit was close to dissipating and his awareness turned vague and murky.

    However, at the most crucial and dangerous time, the subsequent force of the punch disappeared.

    It had bizarrely disappeared!

    Meng Qi's vision recovered and he realized the strand of karma had dissipated on its own. On his left was an empty path for him to continue moving forward.

    He grabbed hold of this golden opportunity and weaved out of the 'siege' of the strands of karma, his mind occupied with countless thoughts.

    "These strands of karma lack any subsequent force. No wonder I can't detect any other danger from them; they're all within the limits of my endurance. But why would they lack such force...?"

    "Abbot Kong Wen, Abbot Kong Wen..." Meng Qi racked his brain to recall the scene earlier. His heart suddenly jolted and turbulent emotions washed over him.

    "Could the middle-aged man with the devilish charm be 'Evil Master' Han Guang?"

    "It was 'Evil Master' Han Guang who broke the previous formation?"

    'Evil Master' Han Guang had a reputation that Meng Qi was familiar with. He was one-half of the two gleaming stars of the former generation, sharing the title with Meng Qi's friend, Brother Gao. Furthermore, he went to claim Dharmakaya later on, clearly demonstrating that his talent was alarmingly splendid!

    His methods were ruthless and his movements furtive, but he still lost to Abbot Kong Wen of Shaolin Temple in the end. He had been missing since then; no one knew if he was killed or suppressed somewhere.

    "Did he enter the gate here or did he obtain it from the true back mountain of Shaolin Temple?"

    "Is his battle with Abbot Kong Wen related to this?"

    He could not afford to distract himself with such questions as danger turned even more intense the closer he came to the eye of the formation. He forcibly suppressed his turbulent emotions and dived into danger once again, cautiously passing through two 'strings of stars'.

    Before long, the object in the eye of the formation became vaguely visible. It appeared to an indistinct silhouette of a person sitting cross-legged, but he detected no living breath coming from it.

    Meng Qi's heart shuddered. The strands of karma before his eyes were so densely packed that they were like a curtain wall. Unless he was able to morph into a mosquito, it would be impossible to traverse.

    However, he remained calm without feeling the least hint of panic, having had his earlier experience. Upon careful observation, he slammed into a string of gleaming stars in his mouse form.

    That was the least dangerous one, even less so than the one earlier!

    With the mysterious strands of karma made out of nothingness surrounding him, he gained a deeper understanding of the Way of Karma in a flash. Then he unsurprisingly found that he had 'changed' into someone else. In front of him was an old man dressed in an ancient robe and a tall hat.

    His silver hair was like snow, while his eyes harbored the wisdom accumulated over his long lifetime. His breath was shunned outside of heaven and earth and was near impossible to detect. If Meng Qi closed his eyes, he might really assume that no one was there.

    "This feeling..."

    Meng Qi frowned, finding it to be exceptionally familiar.

    Realization suddenly dawned on him. "Isn't this the breath of Divination Saint that I once sensed in the Human Emperor's Ancient Path?"

    "The ancestor of the Wang family of River East, one of the saints of the medieval times!"

    While grappling with shock, Meng Qi realized that 'he' was wearing a grey frock and carrying an ordinary Buddhist Commandment Blade.

    Was he now in the body of a monk?

    The ancestor of the Wang family suddenly heaved a sigh. "Ever since figuring out and validating that matter, I knew that such a day would come without fail."

    "Knowing too much isn't a good thing," Meng Qi blurted out, though those words were not his. They came from the 'instinctive reaction' of the grey-robed monk.

    The ancestor smiled bitterly. "Yes. I've left behind family precepts a long time ago. Divinatory diagrams musn't be calculated to their limit and similarly, actions can't be taken to their extremes. That's the right way to live."

    He had surprisingly become carefree in the face of a desperate end, even joking, "How should I address you..."

    Saber radiance flared before he could finish his words. The surroundings plunged into darkness once more and the illusory strands of karma appeared in front of Meng Qi's eyes. Then he used his, or rather the monk's, Buddhist Commandment Blade clung to the strands in an abstruse manner. The ancestor of the Wang family became 'all alone in the world'.

    Where there was an effect, there must be a cause. People who live in this world would inevitably gain the karma of being born by their parents. To obtain strong and unyielding martial arts would also mean bearing the karma of impartations inheritance and painstaking practice. When the Buddhist Commandment Blade clung to those karmas, its fruits would also cease to exist.

    The ancestor's body gradually collapsed and it was as if he had never once existed in this world.

    It was difficult for the blade to cling to the strands of karma for an extended period of time. Soon, they began to float away again. The life of the ancestor of the Wang family, however, was gone. The outcome was written in stone and there was no way of changing it.

    Stars began colliding with one another in the aftermath of a violent countercharge. The greatest karma was borne by the grey-robed monk, which happened to be Meng Qi!

    "Being a member of the Wang family, he had cultivated the Derivation Sutra all in hopes of helping his family survive the greatest calamity after the chaos of the demons."

    Surprisingly, the additional weight of karma prompted Meng Qi to sigh in relief. The greatest calamity after the chaos of the demons was the chaos of Demonic Buddha. The Wang family would eventually safely survive the ordeal and flourish to this day.

    No wonder this was the least dangerous strand of karma!

    With the karma gone, Meng Qi opened his eyes. His emotions were a mixture of joy and shock.

    He was delighted because he had experienced Fruits of Karma Bladesmanship from the beginning to its end, prompting his Vital Spirit to become lively and active. The saber in his hand was eager to move, having gained a faint understanding of quite a few profound mysteries.

    What shocked him was the monk that he had possessed seemed to be Ananda himself, the same Ananda who had appeared in the medieval times after being killed by Monster Saint!

    To think that Divination Saint of the Wang family who managed to scheme against Overlord would die in his hands!

    While still immersed in his thoughts, Meng Qi passed through the curtain made out of strands of karma and arrived at the eye of the formation.

    The hazy silhouette in the eye of the formation was shrouded in flames, flames that were made out of strange strands of karma. Unlike the rest, these were of a scarlet hue!
Previous Index Next