Ao Jiao returning to the Golden Crow Empire was not difficult to understand. After all, she was the Solar Divine Daughter; she could not possibly remain in the Heavenly Alliance.
Furthermore, she worried about Little Yellow Feather staying in the Golden Crow Empire by itself.
After saying goodbye to Mo Chen and Su Ye, Xiao Chen headed for the Golden Crow Empire alone.
With his current strength, he did not need an Alloy warship to travel the Starry Heavens. He could even travel faster without it.
In the magnificent Starry Heavens, the many astral regions revolved around the Central Great Realm.
No matter where one was in the vast and boundless Starry Heavens, one could see the magnificent and eternal Central Great Realm by turning one’s head.
This was the heart of the Martial Epoch, the center of the Great Thousand Realms, the place that gathered all of the Martial Epoch’s Luck.
However, one could clearly sense an ominous black fog encasing the Central Great Realm when looking over now.
Three days later, Xiao Chen returned to the Central Great Realm from the Heavenly Alliance’s headquarters.
However, he did not rush to the Golden Crow Empire. Instead, he went straight to the Starry Heavens above the Yanwu Dynasty.
Based on the astrological signs, Xiao Chen could tell that the Luck guarding the Yanwu Dynasty was shaky and could crumble at any moment.
Xiao Chen spread his arm slightly, slowly descending from the Starry Heavens like an eagle.
Then, Xiao Chen’s Spiritual Sense turned into countless invisible light motes and spread out like a spiderweb. Soon, he could sense the entire Yanwu Dynasty within his sea of consciousness.
Smoke and fire were everywhere. Its past glory was no longer visible.
Countless refugees wandered around. Demons and ghosts filled the place.
The common people looked fearful, but they did not know what to do in their numbness and ignorance. Either that or they got herded up by Demonic Dao cultivators. Their bodies became ingredients for Demonic Dao Cultivation Techniques, and their souls were sacrificed to refine ghost pennants.
The various religious factions were also in chaos, leading the people astray.
Xiao Chen’s spread-out Spiritual Sense fed back negative emotions. All the rules had already broken down within the grand Yanwu Dynasty; order no longer existed. With ghosts and demons roaming the place, there was no sight of hope anywhere as the long night fell.
Xiao Chen opened his eyes, feeling somewhat sorrowful.
He knew that this was just the start. Such tragedies in the mundane world would slowly spread to fill the entire Great Thousand Realms. When the epoch fell, an extremely long night would formally arrive.
At that time, the many clans would fight, and the many races would clash. There would be blood and fire, chaos and despair until the new epoch started.
No one could turn around such a situation.
Right now, Xiao Chen somewhat understood why Mu Zifeng said that the Black Dragon King would appear.
Even if they knew where the Black Dragon King was sealed, there would be no way to prevent his reappearance.
This was because if the old epoch did not fall, the new epoch would never appear. The extremely long night would never have a sunrise, remaining in eternal darkness.
The seal could not stop the Black Dragon King, as this world was calling for a destroyer.
Suddenly, Xiao Chen’s Spiritual Sense sensed a dazzling Buddhist light.
He saw a huge Buddha image in the east of the Yanwu Dynasty. This Buddha image was towering, radiating Buddhist light and looking solemn, dignified, and benevolent.
Below it was a vast, majestic, glorious Buddhist rite ground.
There were countless believers in the Buddhist rite ground, kneeling and praying. The worship made the Buddha image and the surrounding bodhisattvas and arhats even more dignified.
Xiao Chen was quite familiar with such a scene.
Back when Xiao Chen was in the Kunlun Realm, the Kṣitigarbha Bodhisattva had set up a similar Buddhist rite ground in the Heavenly Starry Ocean. However, that had been on a much smaller scale.
This Buddhist rite ground in the Yanwu Dynasty was densely packed with believers—at least one hundred million of them.
Xiao Chen turned and flew directly towards that Buddhist rite ground. He approached the place after a while. Buddhist chanting filled his ears, echoing in the surroundings.
Without any warning, Xiao Chen, who shot forward like a laser beam, crashed into a barrier.
Immediately, a vast Buddhist nation appeared, giving off a golden light.
Xiao Chen took several steps back and squinted at it, entering deep thought.
This was a small world made by more than one hundred Buddhist sect experts, gathered together by Buddhist sect techniques. It would be like a divine nation of a True God, even superior to a small world when materialized.
Xiao Chen felt startled. He had heard from Jiang He that the new Buddhist religion Yuan Zhen led had developed rapidly.
However, Xiao Chen had not known that Yuan Zhen had already established a Buddhist nation in the world.
“Where did this evil creature come from? How dare you barge into the divine nation?”
Two Buddhist sect experts bathed in golden light and dressed as guardians appeared from the dazzling nation.
Xiao Chen frowned slightly. These two Buddhist sect experts had a pure Buddhist aura with deep accumulations.
They were not Sovereign Emperors who had rapidly reached their strength using the power of faith.
“Another dog of the dynasty here to spy on us. You are pretty strong.”
“Don’t bother speaking nonsense with him. Take him down and let Venerable Yuan Zhen purify him. He will be of great help.”
The eyes of the two Great Perfection Sovereign Emperor Buddhist sect guardians lit up when they saw Xiao Chen.
They were like wild beasts seeing delectable prey.
“Flying Flower Finger!”
“Cloud Stroking Palm!”
The two did not bother saying much, executing killing moves and encasing Xiao Chen in Buddhist Might.
Flowers flew about, flashing in light and shadow.
The clouds moved uninhibitedly, materializing ten thousand Buddhas with one palm.
The two freely controlled their Buddhist sect consummate techniques, perfectly bringing out the techniques’ true meaning with the wave of a hand.
Without more than a century of accomplishments in Buddhist teachings, it would be difficult to use these techniques as one pleased, materializing perfect Buddhist mysterious phenomena.
Xiao Chen did not fluster, silently circulating his Cycle Great Dao.
Immediately, the Life Dao and the Death Dao cycled endlessly around him, shooting out saber light materialized with the power of cycles.
When illuminated by the bright saber light, the various Buddhist mysterious phenomena could not advance.
The initiative that the two grasped disappeared in mere moments, vanishing to nothing and plunging them into worry.
Just as they felt horrified, they saw Xiao Chen quickly raising his hand.
Xiao Chen spread his fingers and held his palm up. In that instant, Xiao Chen’s figure appeared infinitely larger, making them feel infinitely insignificant.
The five fingers gathered the saber light materialized by the power of cycles in his palm. Then, Xiao Chen casually swung his hand.
The two became like broken kites, crashing into the Buddhist nation’s barrier in the air and producing a loud ‘bong’ like the sound of a bell.
The two vomited blood continuously. As they looked at Xiao Chen, fear filled their eyes.
Just as the two were at a loss, the Buddhist nation barrier opened like ancient Buddhist gates.
Thousands of five-colored Auspicious Signs poured out. A golden dharmic incarnation of the Kṣitigarbha Bodhisattva hid within the deepest part of the Buddhist light.
“Welcome, Benefactor Xiao. The Revered One invites you in.”
A large, rainbow road appeared, conveying a lotus platform as it stretched over and arrived at Xiao Chen’s feet.
Xiao Chen thought about this. If he entered the other party’s Buddhist nation, his strength would be restricted.
If the other party wanted to make things difficult for him, escape could be a challenge.
However, since Yuan Zhen already invited him in, it would not be a problem to meet him.
Xiao Chen happened to be curious, wanting to see what exactly was going on with Yuan Zhen.
When Xiao Chen stepped onto the lotus platform, Buddhist light flowed. Then, the lotus platform bore him on the rainbow bridge.
After Xiao Chen entered, the gates to the Buddhist nation suddenly closed.
Countless arhats wearing kasayas lined both sides of the road, their bodies covered with divine golden powder. When illuminated by the Buddhist light, they glistened, looking incredibly dazzling, like ancient arhats.
The many believers on the ground showed joy on their faces, full of smiles and blissful, satisfied expressions.
However, their eyes were lifeless, lacking spirituality, clearly delirious. When Xiao Chen looked around, he found the many believers densely packing the place were all like this.
However, countless refugees outside the Buddhist nation sincerely worshiped this place, hoping for Buddha to appear and let them in.
After passing ten halls and climbing a million steps, Xiao Chen saw Yuan Zhen on an empty Dao Platform within a treasure hall.
Yuan Zhen was sitting cross-legged, expounding Buddhist scriptures to those around.
The recipients of this teaching slightly surprised Xiao Chen. There were Sovereign Emperor experts of both the Righteous Dao and the Demonic Dao. There were even the races of the Abyssal Underworld. Those lawless evil cultivators showed sincere expressions, or perhaps, more accurately, subservient expressions.
Xiao Chen understood in his heart. This was what the two guardians mentioned earlier, the so-called purification.
This so-called purification was a Buddhist sect technique to brainwash the other party into becoming their slaves.
“There is a guest. We will continue another day. You may withdraw first.”
“We obey the Revered One!”
The group of Sovereign Emperor experts—both from the Righteous Dao and the Demonic Dao—stood up and bowed respectfully before leaving.
Yuan Zhen glanced around and smiled when he saw Xiao Chen. “Benefactor Xiao, how have you been?!”
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