EIF - Book 05 Chapter 053: Long Zhanguo
Heavenly Yin City’s central plaza:
When the Cultural Dao Sage Palace appeared, the pressure immediately silenced all five hundred million people in the city.
Following an inspection in the Cultural Dao Sage Palace, the four hosts came out and landed on their respective circular platforms.
“Inviting the Qian Heavenly Emperor to the sea of arbitration!” Gongyang Sheng shouted as he looked coldly at the one hundred thousand cultural cultivators participating.
After that loud shout, Gongyang Sheng, Ninth Young Master, Venerable Liu Nian, and Founding Dynasty performed cupped-fist salutes while bowing.
Countless citizens in Heavenly Yin City bowed respectfully as well.
Nine gigantic dragons in the distance flew over slowly, pulling a large carriage. White clouds surrounded the carriage, with many Qian Nation officials standing on them. Long Shenwu, Sima Zongheng, and many stern-looking escorts followed behind the carriage.
The sound of a cow horn rang out in Heavenly Yin City, welcoming the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
There was a tall platform to the north of the plaza.
The dragon carriage landed on that platform.
When the dragon carriage landed, the surrounding officials behind it stood respectfully as they waited for the bead curtains to draw back.
Then, a crown emerged slowly from the carriage.
Everyone knew that this was the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
“Salutations, Your Holy Eminence! Long live Your Holy Eminence! May Your Holy Eminence live for ten thousand years!” the surrounding officials and soldiers saluted respectfully.
“Salutations, Your Holy Eminence! Long live Your Holy Eminence! May Your Holy Eminence live for ten thousand years!” countless citizens saluted excitedly.
For some reason, the pressure from the Cultural Dao Sage Palace seemed to weaken significantly upon the Qian Heavenly Emperor’s arrival. The citizens could now talk freely, but they gazed excitedly at the Qian Heavenly Emperor instead.
The instant the Qian Heavenly Emperor stepped out of the dragon carriage, a vague golden stream of energy soared into the sky with the Qian Heavenly Emperor at the center.
The golden stream of energy scattered the vast noble spirit above the Qian Heavenly Emperor, then turned into a golden cloud floating in the sky.
There seemed to be golden dragons flying above the golden cloud, looking like a fantasy.
After the Qian Heavenly Emperor stepped off the dragon carriage, the dragon carriage flew away. The officials behind immediately brought out a throne and placed it behind the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
“That is the Qian Heavenly Emperor?” Some shock flashed in Gu Hai’s eyes.
The Qian Heavenly Emperor looked like an ordinary, fifty- or sixty-year-old man. However, as he stood on the tall platform, he appeared to be the sovereign of the world. He wore a crown of jade and crystal, brown imperial robes with golden dragons, and seven-colored shoes embroidered with gold. Boundless auspicious energy surrounded him.
“Rise!” the Qian Heavenly Emperor said indifferently.
The Qian Heavenly Emperor’s voice was not loud, but it strangely reached everyone’s ears.
“Thank you, Your Holy Eminence!” The countless officials, soldiers, and citizens straightened excitedly.
Then, the Qian Heavenly Emperor sat on his throne.
“Spirit Mountain Holy Land’s Future Buddha greets the Qian Heavenly Emperor!” A loud voice rang out from the west of the plaza.
Gu Hai turned his head to look and saw many monks standing on a distant platform. In front was a white-clad, bald monk who looked about twenty years old. He had a golden ribbon wrapped around his forehead. Pressing his palms together, he bowed slightly to the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
“The Future Buddha?” Gu Hai frowned slightly.
There seemed to be a halo behind the Future Buddha’s head, giving off golden Buddhist light.
“The Myriad Age Daoist Sect’s Supreme Ascendant greets the Qian Heavenly Emperor!” A woman’s loud voice suddenly came from the south of the plaza.
Gu Hai looked over and saw that there was a platform in the south as well. This platform had many white-clad men and women on it. The one leading the group was a gorgeous woman who looked thirtysomething. She had snow-white skin and an ample bosom, revealing some flesh at the collar of her white clothes. Her mature charm made it hard for one to look away. A fascinating cinnabar mark on her forehead made everyone feel as though all the beauty in this world was gathered in this one body. However, her eyes were cold.
“The Grand Mohist of the Supreme Ascendant’s line of inheritance?” Gu Hai’s expression changed slightly.
The Grand Mohist had some ribbons floating behind her, adding a rainbow to the sky.
“The Solar Divine Palace’s Supreme Genesis greets the Qian Heavenly Emperor!” A loud voice came from the plaza’s east.
The image of countless angels appeared to the east as a holy light lit up the surroundings.
A white-clad, middle-aged man stood in front of a large group of angels on the platform there and bowed slightly to the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
“The Supreme Genesis?” Gu Hai’s pupils constricted.
Gu Hai had not heard much of the Supreme Genesis over the past few days. Unexpectedly, the Supreme Genesis came.
The Qian Heavenly Emperor nodded while seated on his throne, not standing up to return the greetings.
“Heaven above, we, the master of the Qian Heavenly Dynasty, Long Zhanguo, thank heaven for bestowing this opportunity on us to arbitrate in the Ten Thousand Sages Convention, to uphold righteousness for the cultural Dao. May righteousness continue forevermore!”
The noble spirit in the sky immediately churned.
“The Qian Heavenly Emperor, Long Zhanguo.” Gu Hai stared at the Qian Heavenly Emperor.
Although the Qian Heavenly Emperor did not reply to the three holy lands, the three holy lands did not blame him. This was the Qian Nation’s territory. A word from him could shake the heavens.
“Inviting the ten thousand sages!” Gongyang Sheng said gravely.
As the noble spirit sea churned, zither music suddenly rang out. There seemed to be many people reciting poems amid the zither music. Then, images of countless immortal birds and divine beasts appeared in the sky. Numerous stars twinkled in all directions.
Although the sound was very loud, it was extremely pleasant. However, one could not understand what was being said for some reason.
This continued until a voice rang out.
“Heaven above, we are willing to serve for generations, giving pointers to the masses and increasing our number. We will carry out heaven’s will and share in the immortal firmament’s glory!”
Many white-clad figures ambled out of the Cultural Dao Sage Palace. The faces of the white-clad figures were indistinct, but they wore scholarly attire. As they walked, boundless noble spirit surrounded them.
These figures appeared one after another. Soon, it felt like immortals suddenly filled the sky.
The five hundred million people in Heavenly Yin City were quiet as they watched with wide eyes.
“Those are the sages?” Gu Hai narrowed his eyes slightly.
“That’s right. Those are the sages’ heavenly souls. Heaven bestowed special bodies on them,” Sima Changkong whispered to Gu Hai from behind.
“I can understand everything that the voice from the Cultural Dao Sage Palace said, except for this immortal firmament. What is that?” Gu Hai asked.
“Huh? The immortal firmament? Mister Gu listened very carefully. I don’t quite understand, either. Firmament means sky, so I guess that immortal firmament probably means heaven?” Sima Changkong said, feeling a little confused.
“That’s not it. An immortal firmament is an item,” Longevity immediately spoke up.
“Oh? An item? What kind of item is an immortal firmament?” Gu Hai looked at Longevity quizzically.
“Uh…I don’t know, either. The old fogey mentioned it in the past. Furthermore, he did not dare speak too much about it whenever he did. Purple Subtlety, didn’t you ask the old fogey before? What did he say?” Longevity looked at Purple Subtlety.
“Say, my ass. I only asked what an immortal firmament was, and the old fogey beat me up. He even told me not to mention it again in the future, that it was a secret of heaven. If heaven issues a punishment, no one can escape,” Purple Subtlety immediately said while shaking his head.
Gu Hai: “…”
When the sages walked out of the Cultural Dao Sage Palace, they split themselves into two groups above the plaza.
One group had eight thousand sages, and the other had two thousand.
The Qian Heavenly Emperor leaned back in his throne, not saying anything.
However, Gongyang Sheng bowed respectfully to the ten thousand sages.
“Host of the calligraphy Dao, Gongyang Sheng, asks the sages to divide themselves into the groups for the initial selection and the latter selection!” Gongyang Sheng said respectfully.
The eight thousand sages moved back, leaving the two thousand sages standing above the noble spirit sea and looking down at the plaza.
“What is the meaning of this?” Gu Hai looked at Sima Changkong.
“Those eight thousand sages are the heavenly souls of the three holy lands’ cultural Dao sages,” Sima Changkong explained with a bitter smile.
“Oh?” Gu Hai raised his eyebrow.
“Those eight thousand support the three holy lands. The two thousand are regular cultural Dao sages. There are five hundred sages each for the music Dao, Go Dao, calligraphy Dao, and painting Dao. Mister Gu, look. Did you notice that the major figures of the three holy lands did not participate? Do you know why?” Sima Changkong said with a bitter smile.
“These two thousand sages hate the three holy lands. So, as long as the Supreme Ascendant Scripture, the Future Scripture, or the Supreme Genesis Scripture appears, they will not choose from those. Knowing that, the major figures of the three holy lands chose not to humiliate themselves here. Hence, we will be competing with the people from the Yan Heavenly Dynasty and the Huang Heavenly Dynasty for the sages’ recommendations during the first round,” Sima Changkong explained.
“Oh? There are conflicts between the sages?” Surprise flashed in Gu Hai’s eyes.
“Mister Gu, don’t think of them as dead people. They have independent thoughts,” Sima Changkong explained.
“The Supreme Ascendant, the Supreme Genesis, and the Future Buddha will only compete for the eight thousand sages’ recommendations during the second round. Now, they will only send some ordinary disciples to try their luck,” Sima Changkong explained.
Gu Hai nodded.
“So, there will only be these two thousand sages during the first round. Mister Gu, do be careful. Do your best to present your music Dao, Go Dao, calligraphy Dao, and painting Dao in a way that resonates with the sages. That will help you get the sages’ recommendations. The more, the better. The other cultural cultivators and I will help you get the sages to recommend you,” Sima Changkong said.
“Alright,” Gu Hai nodded.
“Begin, then! Music, Go, calligraphy, and painting!” one of the two thousand sages in the sky above said.
As the four hosts did not say anything, the one hundred thousand participants found starting awkward. These four hosts were the ones who upheld the rules.
“Number 1, Gu Hai!” Gongyang Sheng called out.
“Present!” Gu Hai felt slightly startled as he stepped forward.
In the surroundings, Xuan En, Yehua, the Azure Emperor, and Emperor Kong all goggled. Why is Gongyang Sheng calling out Gu Hai during the competition?
“We will start with you. Show your cultural Dao to the sages,” Gongyang Sheng said seriously.
“What?” Xuan En’s expression changed.
“This… He is letting Gu Hai start first? That is cheating! Letting Gu Hai start first is snatching the initiative from us!” Seven Kills’s expression changed.
“Humph! The Qian Heavenly Dynasty is using its host position to cheat!”
Countless cultural cultivators glared furiously at Gu Hai.
Gu Hai: “…”
Gu Hai felt speechless. What an undeserved catastrophe!
“Anyone who makes noise will have their qualifications stripped away!” Gongyang Sheng shouted.
The people who shouted earlier immediately stopped.
Isn’t it too obvious that you are favoring me?
“Gu Hai, begin!” Gongyang Sheng said.
Gu Hai: “…”
Begin? How do I begin? You singled me out to perform first? Although I do benefit from that, isn’t that somewhat inappropriate?
“Master, how about I start first? We can play your pieces, or I can sing!” Ensnaring Performance called out.
“Mister Gu, let me do it! I’ll help you recite a poem!” Purple Subtlety called out.
“Mister Gu, I’ll do it! I’ll paint for you!” Longevity called out as well.
Gu Hai looked at the sages. They did not seem to mind.
However, nearly five hundred million people stared at him at this moment. Some appeared happy, some envious, some disdainful, and some furious. Gu Hai felt somewhat uncomfortable.
Gu Hai did not have to delegate Go to others. As for music and calligraphy, he had a foundation from Earth. However, he did not seem to have anything for painting.
“Longevity, can I trouble you to try first?” Gu Hai said.
Painting? That is something I’m not good at. I can let Longevity try first. Even if an accident happens, it will be fine.
“Me? What should I paint? I’ll paint whatever you want me to paint!” Longevity immediately called out.
“Anything will do,” Gu Hai said with a bitter smile.
Gu Hai did not understand the painting Dao at all. Naturally, he could not blindly decide on something. Thus, he let Longevity do it.
“Alright!” Longevity nodded.
Then, a desk with ink, brush, and paper was placed before Gu Hai. Gu Hai let Longevity paint.
At this moment, five hundred million people stared at Longevity.
“Humph! I want to see what kind of outstanding painting can be painted, given that the Qian Heavenly Dynasty cheated like that. Let’s see how many sages will recommend it!” the nearby Yehua sneered.
“That one is Longevity?” The Azure Emperor narrowed his eyes slightly, finding Longevity somewhat familiar.
Gongyang Sheng, Venerable Liu Nian, Ninth Young Master, and Founding Dynasty looked at Longevity with some apprehension.
The Qian Heavenly Emperor in the north, the Supreme Genesis in the east, the Supreme Ascendant Dao’s Grand Mohist in the south, and the Future Buddha in the west all appeared apprehensive as well.
Gu Hai forced a slight smile. They pushed him to go first, and he was momentarily at a loss as to where to start.
“What? He is drawing that thing again? My eyes!” Ensnaring Performance’s expression suddenly changed.
Gu Hai felt slightly startled as he turned his head to look. He saw that Longevity had made two strokes. Based on the curve of the two strokes, he already knew what Longevity was drawing.
Longevity is going to draw an egg in front of five hundred million people?
Longevity is going to draw an egg in front of the Qian Heavenly Emperor, the Future Buddha, the Supreme Ascendant Dao’s Grand Mohist, and the Supreme Genesis?
This novel is _hosted_ by hosted novel.
Longevity is going to draw an egg before all the many sages?
Gu Hai quivered.
However, Longevity painted very fast, making rapid strokes with the brush. The shape of the egg grew increasingly clearer.
Gu Hai immediately turned his sweat-covered head away, not daring to look.
On the other hand, Gongyang Sheng shouted to the sky, “This is the first showing of the painting Dao. I invite the painting Dao sages to observe carefully and make a judgment!”
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