HSSB1085: Sword God, Sword Devil
It was indeed sword-intent.
What was even more worthy of attention was that it was not just a single source of sword-intent.
Instead, two sword-intents were colliding with ringing, metallic sounds as they clashed in mid-air.
The ringing of the swords seemed to traverse distant time, arriving all the way in the present age.
Even from a great distance away, that sharp, biting sword-intent caused a chill to run throughout one’s entire body.
As Yan Zhaoge and the others approached and felt that sword-intent, their hearts jolted in unison.
The gazes of the Brocade Emperor and the Encompassing Emperor simultaneously fell on Yan Zhaoge.
Yan Zhaoge muttered aloud, “Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword…”
From his interactions with Wang Pu and the others at Kunlun Mountain, he was not unfamiliar with the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword.
Moreover, he had personally witnessed that shocking sword by the Sword Sovereign Yue Zhenbei in the Royal Reed Sea that year which had split the heavens and opened the world.
Yan Zhaoge discovered that one of these two sword-intents was precisely of the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword which had been created by his own grandfather, Yan Xingtang.
Yue Zhenbei’s sword-intent had been inherited from him, pure and refined.
The Brocade Emperor and the Encompassing Emperor clearly recognised this sword-intent too as the latter wondered aloud, “I just wonder if this was left behind by the Sword Sovereign in the past, or if it was…the Exalted Gold Luminary?”
“The other sword-intent is not of the Prime Clear lineage, though,” The Brocade Emperor appeared rather interested.
While the combatants from back then had possessed deep cultivation bases, having been able to persist till now with such intact integrity without being corroded by the Nine Underworlds was in large part due to the fact that these two clashing sword-intents had attained a subtle equilibrium, thereby resisting the weathering of time together.
The other sword-intent was clearly suppressed by the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword. Still it was remarkable nevertheless as it could still be considered a rare existence beneath the heavens.
Yan Zhaoge and the two Emperors could all tell that it was not from any of the Numinous Treasure Four Swords of the Prime Clear lineage.
The Prime Clear lineage’s Numinous Treasure Four Swords had collectively always been the highest ever accomplishment in the dao of the sword for Daoism.
In the eyes of many Daoist martial practitioners, especially those of the Prime Clear direct lineage, the Numinous Treasure Four Swords were also the greatest ever sword arts existing in this world.
Over the years, some challengers would only occasionally appear who possessed the qualifications to challenge the sword arts of the Prime Clear lineage.
Yet, it was merely being qualified.
For instance, there was Cultivated Deity Jade Cauldron from the legendary era of the Investiture of the Gods, a personal disciple of the founder of the Jade Clear lineage, the Primordial Heavenly Lord.
For instance, there was the Purple Tenuity Emperor who had later been one of the Four Imperials of Daoism. He had created a new lineage of his own from one of the Grand Clear direct lineage’s Later Heaven Five Ultimates.
The two of them had been acclaimed alongside the Lord of Plentiful Treasure of the Prime Clear direct lineage as Daoism’s three peak sword cultivators.
In truth, though, there were many more powerful sword experts of the Prime Clear lineage as the Lord of Plentiful Treasure was simply the best amongst them.
Outside of Daoism, a famed swordsman had once been produced from Buddhism just after the Gautama Buddha had Transcended. It had been a real sight indeed as he had then sparred with descendants of the Prime Clear lineage.
Still, after the life cycle of that Buddhist swordsman had ended, Buddhism’s sword dao had again fallen silent.
Still, one had to note that while these experts had been outstanding as they had been able to compete with sword cultivators of the Prime Clear lineage, the sword daos of their legacies ultimately were still less mighty and renowned than the Numinous Treasure Four Swords.
Perhaps it should be said that they had challenged not the Prime Clear lineage’s sword dao, but rather merely the Prime Clear lineage’s sword cultivators.
The first actual challenge to the Prime Clear lineage’s sword dao had actually come after the Great Calamity.
It was Yan Zhaoge’s grandfather, the Exalted Gold Luminary Yan Xingtang, who had made a name for himself on the world’s stage, creating the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword atop the sword dao of Cultivated Deity Jade Cauldron, thus creating a real opponent for the Numinous Treasure Four Swords for the first time.
Of course, it could not be said that the current Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword was definitely comparable to the Numinous Treasure Four Swords.
Still, those with vision could all discern the potential within.
The Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword was only restricted in its accomplishments because Yan Xingtang himself had not reached the peak with his cultivation base.
If he had not died young, with his talents and genius, his sword arts would surely have advanced unceasingly along with his cultivation base.
He would eventually have created an ultimate sword art that was truly on the level of the Numinous Treasure Four Swords.
Before this, it was the Purple Tenuity Emperor who had had the greatest chance of doing so. Still, all such efforts had ceased following the Great Calamity.
That the same fate had befallen Yan Xingtang caused countless people to sigh wistfully.
Still, in the Nine Underworlds, there was currently a sword art that was not of the Prime Clear direct lineage which was able to compete with the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword.
It was not a sword art of Buddhism or the sword arts of the Purple Tenuity Emperor.
Instead, it was a…devilish sword!
“I don’t think I’ve ever heard of such a sword art of the devilish dao from pre-Great Calamity times…” Yan Zhaoge mused as he looked at the Brocade Emperor and the Encompassing Emperor.
The Encompassing Emperor pondered, “Thinking about it more deeply, this sword-intent of the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword was more probably left behind by the Exalted Gold Luminary.”
“In the devilish domain of the Nine Underworlds, battling the Jade Illusory Heaven Opening Sword in a battle of the sword-an old legend vaguely comes to mind.”
“Sword Devil, Yin Shiyang!” The Brocade Emperor agreed.
Yan Zhaoge’s gaze flickered, “Sword…Devil?”
The Brocade Emperor said, “Let us not make baseless speculations. We should get closer and take a look.”
“Good idea,” Yan Zhaoge nodded as they now proceeded up ahead.
The black fog before them gradually faded, the devilish qi of the Nine Underworlds now no more as lustrous white light instead flickered that was exceptionally conspicuous within this devilish domain.
A metallic lustre was vaguely visible on the surface of the white light as a thunderous roar vaguely seemed to resound too.
Yan Zhaoge and the others realised, “Right, so there are traces left behind by Grand Illusory Spatial Thunder here. Coupled with the two clashing sword-intents, it is no wonder that it has been able to remain in so strong a state after so long a time.”
While the Immortal Thunder itself was no longer in existence, along with the two sword-intents, it had once created a small, independent space within this corner of the Nine Underworlds in the past.
While everyone felt a biting cold chill from the two sword-intents as they entered their domain, they were not attacked by them.
Within this dimension, coming into contact with that intermingling sword-intent, a scene instantly appeared before their eyes.
Two shocking sword-lights, one black and one white, flew over from the distant sky, cleaving apart endless devilish qi and dark soil of the Nine Underworlds as marks were left behind in the heavens and earth of the devilish domain.
The sword-lights collectively descended, shattering a clump of Grand Illusory Spatial Thunder as a new dimensional space was ultimately formed.
Yan Zhaoge knew that this depicted how the place had been formed back then. He gazed towards the source of the sword-lights with all his might.
Two silhouettes were visible there, one purple and one black.
They suddenly halted, two men distinctly coming into view.
The black-clothed man roared towards the heavens, “Alas, I still cannot defeat you!”
There was endless hatred, stubbornness, fury, indignation, unwillingness and a sense of loss therein that seemed to have condensed to become tangible, surpassing the boundaries of space and time to encompass the entire space.
Across from him, a purple-clothed youth stood composedly with his solitary sword.
The scenes ended at that point.
Still, before they vanished, Yan Zhaoge caught a glimpse of that purple-clothed youth’s features.
It was none other than his grandfather, the Exalted Gold Luminary and Sword God, Yan Xingtang!
“Your grandfather, the Exalted Gold Luminary, experienced countless battles in the past. Besides accomplishing the name of Sword God as he dominated the Roving Jade Heavens, he wrote many other legends too.”
The Encompassing Emperor said slowly, “One of these was his great battle with the Sword Devil, Yin Shiyang.”
“No one knows exactly what happened. Ultimately, though, after defeating the Sword Emperor, the Sword God slew the Sword Devil as well!”
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