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42 Ajati Finger

 "Ajati Matriarch, Vacuum Hometown!"

A wispy sound reverberated in Duo Ercha's ears as he saw a lily-white fingers lightly pointing on him. For a moment, he felt the sensation of his soul leaving his body.

Realizing the situation was getting worse, he quickly changed his shape to avoid the finger. The air around him became heavier and collapsed layer by layer, as if cumulating into a giant whirlpool. Finally, he was involuntarily pulled into the whirlpool, as if to embrace the finger.

When Gu Xiaosang extended her finger, the rest saw how Duo Ercha seemed to have lost his soul. Instead of dodging like he had been doing, he gravitated towards her like a traveller who was eager to return home.

"Is this dark arts?" Meng Qi was stunned to witness the strange scene unfolding before him.

Finger landing between Duo Ercha's eyebrows, Gu Xiaosang spoke in a solemn tone.

"Ajati Matriarch, Vacuum Hometown!"

What happened caused their hair to stand. Duo Ercha actually smiled happily and repeated after her in a whisper.

"Ajati Matriarch, Vacuum Hometown!"

His body first swelled before rapidly shrinking. His skin and muscles became dry. Blood light gathered between his eyebrows and flowed into Gu Xiaosang's index and middle finger.

Her jade-white face became so bright that it looked like it could glisten.

"Ajati Matriarch, Vacuum Hometown... " Duo Ercha lied softly on the ground and read the spell-like scriptures peacefully. His voice gradually became lower.

Gu Xiaosang retrieved her right hand and looked at Meng Qi and the rest. Compared to her appearance earlier, she looked even more refreshed. She was so beautiful that she made others feel ashamed of themselves.

"If not for my failure last time, my Karma points wouldn't be lost and I won't be doing this myself. But it's still within my power to kill a person and take his karma point." Gu Xiaosang broke off a branch and walked towards the entrance with a smile. "The General was attacked by Ajati Finger and needed some time to return to his Vacuum Hometown. Though the time is short, it's enough to kill."

She looked at the rest who wore confused faces and waved the branch with a smile. "It's quite an interesting fate. If not for that failure, I wouldn't be using that thing and be thrown here and treated as a rookie. Which one of you should I kill? It's really hard. Why don't you pick? I'll kill the one you choose and the rest can go on their own ways. Either way, we won't be meeting again when we return."

She placed her index finger on her chin and frowned. This question was too troublesome. With such scenery, if a certain someone was here, he would definitely come and forward and entertain this beauty.

After Meng Qi's confession, they had all developed a deeper sense of camaraderie. Besides, their minds were clear so they did not fall for this girl's method of trying to sow discord among them. They all stood in front of the entrance and tried to come up with countermeasures.

Gu Xiaosang's gaze fleeted and she smiled. "Is it difficult for you to choose? Hm, there's completely no point to kill the ordinary disciples of Huanhua Swords Sect. It'll just stain my hands and waste my Karma points."

Qi Zhengyan's face was grim. He knew it was her provocation, but he was still insulted and angry. Why was he inferior to her?

She turned towards Zhang Yuanshan and nodded lightly. "Sect of Zhang is one of the three bases in Zhen Wu Sect. If I kill you in the way of Zhen Wu Sect, it'll definitely create an internal strife."

Zhang Yuanshan stared at her and said calmly, "You witch, do you think our elders are ignorant and impertinent people?"

"You're right." She actually nodded happily in agreement. "I don't know divination and didn't think this situation would happen. So I didn't exchange for the magic code of Zhen Wu Sect. It'll be difficult to blame this murder on them."

"If I just kill you without causing internal strife, I feel like it's a waste of my Karma points. In Zhen Wu Sect, whether it's Yangtai, Yanghe, and the Yao Brothers, they're all far more talented in kungfu and skilled than you. You don't even comprehend the true meaning of Zhenwu's Seven Strokes Scripture and Tai Chi Divine Skill. It's only because you're more steady and capable that the elders favor you."

Her joyful laughter hid ridicule that was intended to sow discord.

Zhang Yuanshan laughed. "My comprehension of kungfu is inferior to my fellow sect disciples. It's destiny. The heaven will supplement my shortcomings. Why should I be upset? Diligence redeems ignorance. Why should I be hopeless?"

Since Gu Xiaosang wanted to sow discord and kill with words, Zhang Yuanshan was also happy to play along and drag the conversation. Everything would be fine when Duo Ercha died.

She was stunned and bit her lower lip. With a laugh, she said, "When I hear what you said, I kind of want to kill you."

She forced herself to turn and smile at Jiang Zhiwei. "I've heard Lady Jiang has the most promising future among the younger generation and will definitely be a famed swordswoman in the future. I really wanted to meet you and kill you. Looks like I have a chance now."

Jiang Zhiwei was neither angry nor afraid. She said placidly, "You have to ask my sword if you have this chance."

Gu Xiaosang looked at unperturbed Jiang Zhiwei and frowned. "Do you still have the energy to use Sword of Anatta? You're badly hurt. It makes no sense. Did you exchange Dharma Access of the Desperate Hit like the Sky Demon Butchering Mighty Art?"

She actually voiced out the confusion in her mind.

"Try me and find out." Jiang Zhiwei smiled lightly, her pale face becoming even more captivating.

Gu Xiaosang stopped and looked at Meng Qi with smile. "Master, you're actually the one I wanted to kill most."

"Ah?" Meng Qi found it completely ridiculous. He thought he was on par with Qi Zhengyan, or even beneath him. At least that was the case now.

She titled her head, cheeks somewhat flushed. "Little Zi seems to like you."

"What kind of reason is this?" Meng Qi was also conversing as much as possible, trying to drag time.

She lifted her head and gave a fox-like smile. "It's the best reason. Whatever she likes and wants, I want to destroy them."

F***! That was the only thought Meng Qi had.

"So, just relax, Master. Amitabha." Gu Xiaosang threw away the branch and put her palms together.

Meng Qi took a deep breath and his surroundings returned to serenity. In his eyes, there was only her. His heart was pure and he lifted Buddhist Commandment Blade and pointed at her.

She approached him quickly with a smile, ignoring the rest.

Suddenly, all the noise seemed to have been sucked into a vacuum. She no longer heard the wind, rain, or the creeping snakes. Everything was serene and clean.

Her smile was frozen mid-air. Meng Qi raised his Buddhist Commandment Blade and noise penetrated the peace.

The tranquil was broken and noise surged again. Voices of children calling their mothers echoed inside her ears. Everything that had happened in the past, be it good or bad, emerged in her mind.

Her face turned blue and she backed a few steps, dodging the blade attack.

Since when did this monk have such excellent swordsmanship?

Watching Gu Xiaosang retreat, Meng Qi ignored his weak strength and soft knees and pushed the switch.

Before she snapped back into focus, he hurled his Buddhist Commandment Blade and closed the entrance.

The Buddhist Commandment Blade was thrown into a spot where red stone was around. Gritting his teeth, he threw a punch and destroyed the mechanism inside as well.

"What are you doing?" Qi Zhengyan asked in surprise.

"The mechanism has been destroyed. We can't leave, but she won't have any hopes of getting in either." Meng Qi sat down and leaned against the stone wall, feeling weak.

Jiang Zhiwei nodded. "As long as Duo Ercha dies, we can directly return. It's no big deal to be trapped here."

"It's a good idea." Zhang Yuanshan smiled.

Qi Zhengyan stood near the entrance with his blade, still worried that the mechanism outside was not completely ruined.

Jiang Zhiwei stared at Meng Qi with a smile. "I didn't expect you would comprehend the true meaning of Peace Quietude Split."

She could tell Meng Qi was putting up a pretense and scared Gu Xiaosang away with sword motions, in exchange for closing the entrance and gaining valuable time.

"It's not that it's incomplete. If you comprehend it and prepare it according to heart sutras, it will work." Meng Qi seemed to have recovered some of his strength.

Qi Zhengyan knew little about this type of movement, so he did not ask much. Zhang Yuanshan did not understand the basics of Zhenwu's Seven Strokes Scripture and Tai Chi Divine Skill, so his knowledge was shallow. He just exercised according to the grand old man's script.

Only Jiang Zhiwei glanced at Meng Qi, smiling faintly. When the other two were not looking, she mouthed at him quietly.

Meng Qi who had once worked closely with her instantly knew what she wanted.

"Competition!"

...

In front of the mountain wall, Gu Xiaosang stared at the closed entrance. Raising her head, a sharp smile appeared on her lips.

She turned around and walked out the forest. With a wave of her sleeves, she helped Duo Ercha close his eyes forever.

...

"Who's Gu Xiaosang?" Meng Qi changed the topic, curious about this person.

Zhang Yuanshan said, "Do you know the Nine Evil Paths?"

"Yes." Meng Qi learnt about it from Xuan Xin.

Zhang Yuanshan nodded. "Gu Xiaoshan is the goddess of Luo Denomination in the Nine Evil Paths. Her sect pays homage to Ajati Matriarch and considers the world a Vacuum Hometown. Their sect regards her as the reincarnation of the Ajati Matriarch for this generation."

"We all know her because she has killed three times and crossed level. She's fourth on the Ranking List of Young Masters and has a famed reputation," added Jiang Zhiwei.

"What's the Ranking List of Young Masters? What's Terrestrial Rankings and Celestial Rankings?" Meng Qi had always wanted to know, but did not have the chance.

Zhang Yuanshan gave a soft laugh. "The Great Jin Dynasty set the ranking for all the best warriors. This ranking can rouse the competitiveness in people's hearts and make them kill one another. The original is kept in Luoyang.

"Though everyone knows the intentions behind the ranking, those who roam the Jianghu may be uninterested in money, sex, alcohol, or debts. But besides enlightenment, who among them doesn't desire fame? That's why everyone acquiesced in the list, resulting in many secret disputes because of it."

Jiang Zhiwei nodded. "Those on the Celestial Ranking are all Dharmakaya. Since the ranking had come into existence, at most there were 14 or 15 of them. It can even be as few as seven or eight people. Your Abbotship was ranked third. Those ranked are all famous masters, except for land immortals. The first 200 are basically all top masters of the Exterior. My master is ranked first."

She seemed a little proud at this fact.

"The Ranking List of Young Masters is for youngsters. During the Enlightenment process, many defeat others by crossing level. Even if you have opened Nine Apertures, you might not even have a chance to rank high. This ranking only lists 15 people," Zhang Yuanshan added.

Meng Qi was about to ask Jiang Zhiwei if she made the ranking when a line of gray words appeared on the wall.

"General Duo Ercha has died. The second auxiliary task is complete. Gu Xiaosang is awarded 200 Karma points, Jiang Zhiwei 100 Karma points, and Zhang Yuanshan 50 Karma points."

"General Duo Ercha died, Shaolin has fallen. The second auxiliary task is completed in advance. Everyone is rewarded 100 Karma points."

"Hurry and return."