Joy of Life - Chapter 726 - There Is A Temple In The Mountain
Chapter 726: There Is A Temple In The Mountain
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
In the mist-shrouded cave in Xi Mountain in Shangjing, Fan Xian had once said to the dying Xiao En that he was actually just a traveler walking through this world. He wanted to see more sights, so he had a powerful interest in the Temple.
Unlike the Northern Qi Emperor’s desire to use the strength of the Temple to conquer the world, the Wei Emperor’s desire to obtain the secrets to immortality from the Temple, and the Qing Emperor’s unusually valiant attempt to use the Temple as his hired thugs, Fan Xian’s past interest in the Temple was mostly with the unknown.
Now, Fan Xian powerful desire for the secret of the Temple could not help but be layered by more realistic considerations. He needed to enter the Temple to seek out traces of Uncle Wu Zhu and confirm that he was safe and try to find a way to return to the world and defeat the Qing Emperor. This was actually two sides of the same coin. As long as Uncle Wu Zhu was still alive, then everything was simple.
As far as Fan Xian knew, there was no one in the world who could harm Uncle Wu Zhu or hold him down. The forever youthful Grandmaster with the blindfold had sufficiently powerful and mysterious skills. Even if the previously existing Great Grandmasters joined together, Wu Zhu could probably still find a way to escape. The problem was the Temple in this snowy mountain. The illusory wonderland that had always stood above the clouds in the legends of mankind, a place that did not belong in the secular world, perhaps even Wu Zhu was not a match for it.
Reality also seemed to prove this point. Uncle Wu Zhu returned to the Temple to search for his roots. He had been gone for a number of years but had not sent any message back. If he was not trapped inside the temple, then he had probably left this world.
The morning sunlight did not have a shred of warmth as it shone coldly on the three people at the foot of the mountain. Fan Xian narrowed his eyes and tilted back his head to look at the majesty snowy mountain that seemed to cover up half the sky. He looked at the morning light reflecting jade-like off the snow and ice and was silent for a long time.
The three most powerful young people in the world had set off while it was still dark and had walked for hours before nearing the large snowy mountain with difficulty. What surprised Haitang and Thirteenth Wang was that Fan Xian seemed very familiar with the path at the foot of the mountain. He led the two of them easily through a narrow passage at the foot of the mountain, emerging directly to the other side of the mountain.
On this side of the mountain was a plain formed by frozen ice. Other than snow and ice, there was nothing else. The three of them had essentially passed through the mountain and come out the other side while their camp was still at the other end of the mountain.
“Where is the Temple?” Thirteenth Wang panted. He carried Sigu Jian’s ashes on his back. His face, wrapped in cloth, was red from the cold.
Fan Xian, supported by Haitang, narrowed his eyes as he looked up the mountain and said, “Xiao En and Master Ku He ascended the mountain from this side. Logically speaking, the Temple should be right in front of our eyes.”
However, there was nothing in front of their eyes, only the jade-like ice and snow covering the unknown original color of the mountain. The wind was not strong and no heavy snow had fallen. They could see very far and clearly, but they could not find any trace of human craftsmanship anywhere within their field of vision.
Haitang, who was supporting him, was silent for a moment. She then abruptly said, “In the old legends, the Temple only appeared for a day or two each year in front of mortals. If the Temple does not want to be found, no matter how hard mortals searched, they would not be able to find it.”
“Legends are just legends.” Fan Xian covered his mouth and coughed. The coats and jackets he wore were very thick but they barely managed to defend him against the cold. Speaking of which, it was strange. The Temple was very close to them. Although they didn’t know its location, the thick yuanqi in the air began to surge into his body much more quickly, greatly relieving him of his injuries and illness.
With great difficulty, Fan Xian stopped coughing and blinked his eyes. He looked at the messy snow-covered rocks on the snowy mountain with tired eyes and said, “Legends may not be true. Back then, your teacher and Sir Xiao En had waited months in this snowy mountain one or two days for the Temple to show itself and ate who knows how much human flesh. I don’t want to wait.”
Fan Xian had the experience of two lives. No one else could so definitely understand the will of heaven in the darkness. But, his education in his previous life made it difficult for him to shake off this atheism. This dilemma made him, on one hand, feel a faint fear and respect for the Temple. On the other hand, it made him put little belief in the so-called legends.
“If the legends are not true, then the Temple in this snowy mountain must have some way of hiding itself,” Haitang said indistinctly, her entire face hidden beneath her furry collar. “If we are to search the entire mountain, it will take a lot of time in our present condition.”
“I understand. Since it’s going to take a lot of time, we should get started quickly,” Fan Xian said in a raspy voice and glanced at Thirteenth Wang again. “Presumably, both of you have noticed that the nights here are very short. In a few days, there might be no more night. It will be helpful in our search.”
During their months of difficult travel across the snowy plains, Fan Xian no longer purposely hid the knowledge from his previous life in front of Haitang and Thirteenth Wang. Each of his judgments had become reality in the end. Haitang and Thirteenth Wang did not know the basis of these judgments. In their hearts, Fan Xian became more mysterious and unfathomable.
During these few months, Haitang and Thirteenth Wang showed not the slightest doubt or hesitation about any of Fan Xian’s decisions. However, as the three of them stood in front of the snowy mountain and were about to start the search for the Temple, Thirteenth Wang did not head up the mountain. Instead, he glanced at Haitang. ( B oxnovel.c om )
Haitang also glanced at Thirteenth Wang. Their eyes met. They saw the worry and shock in each other’s eyes.
Fan Xian noticed the oddness of his two friends. He furrowed his brows slightly and coughed. “What’s wrong?”
Thirteenth Wang was silent for a moment. He then said, looking at him, “We are just very curious. The Temple is right in front of our eyes. According to your analysis, no matter how much time it takes, we will be able to find the Temple before night falls.”
Fan Xian nodded, not understanding the meaning of his words. His brows furrowed tighter. Haitang sighed at his side and said, “What we mean is that we are about to find the Temple. Regardless of whether we are digging out the Temple’s secret or rescuing the blind master, you have to make some kind of plan in advance or have something prepared. If you have something you know, you have to tell the two of us ahead of time. Given your body’s present condition, there are many things you need us to do.”
The Temple was the same as a fairyland. At least, this was so in the hearts of the people of this land. Fan Xian and the other two sought the Temple. This was a major matter, yet Fan Xian appeared relaxed and casual, even negligent. It was as if it was really was a vacation trip. Who knew what dangers were hidden on the mountain or what kind of godlike might there might be to defend against?
Haitang and Thirteenth Wang were both top warriors with the strongest wills and determination. Faced with this snowy mountain, a sense of confusion and fear still rose in their hearts. They truly did not understand how Fan Xian could be so relaxed and casual.
“Back then, Ku He and Xiao En came back from the Temple alive. This place is not as terrifying as everyone thinks.” Fan Xian smiled bitterly. “At that time, the two of them were already superior ninth-level warriors. However, they endured here for half a year and almost died. Of course, they cannot be compared to us. Since they could return alive, what are we afraid of?”
“Furthermore, Uncle Wu Zhu and the Emperor both said that the Temple is decrepit and rundown. They don’t have much strength left,” Fan Xian said, dropping his eyelids slightly. “I trust the Emperor’s judgment because he has made few mistakes in his life.”
Even if the Temple was rundown, it was still the Temple. Would mortals no longer worship it?
“The bigger problem is that I only know the way to the Temple and its outward appearance. As for what’s inside the temple, I don’t know,” Fan Xian said with a helpless smile. “Since it is so, any preparation is pointless. Let’s look. We’ll talk once we’ve found it.”
This was an irresponsible way of acting. Fan Xian’s entire life had been subsumed in the darkness of the Overwatch Council. He never found an unprepared battle. Even when faced with the unfathomable Emperor, he still made preparations and bravely thought of small tricks that could win him the victory. However, looking at this snowy mountain, this mountain he knew nothing about, what preparations could he make?
The snowy mountain remained silent, serene, and cold. It was as if it didn’t know three mortals were nervously and silently searching for its secret. The omnipotent and all-knowing Temple of legend was like a young woman in her boudoir, hidden in the snow and unwilling to reveal her true appearance.
Climbing up the mountain with difficulty, the wind on the mountain gradually picked up, swirling the snow on the rocks into one’s eyes. Fan Xian’s eyes remained clear and steady, not letting go of any detail that could be overlooked. The Temple only appeared for a day or two. When Xiao En and Ku He saw the Temple last time, it had been the first day after the long night ended. By his reckoning, there must be some kind of pattern hidden within.
After the long night, the sunlight would spill on this part of the snowy mountain. Did the people of the Temple want to bask in the light of the sun, so it appeared to the world? Fan Xian, lying on Haitang’s warm back, turned his head with satisfaction and sniffed at the girl’s neck happily. He knew that he had deduced correctly. There would definitely be some marks of human craftsmanship after the ice and snow were peeled back on this part of the mountain that faced the sky.
Haitang furrowed her brows slightly. She didn’t know where Fan Xian’s confidence came from or why he was so happy.
Just as Fan Xian expected, before long, Thirteenth Wang, who had been searching about 1,920 feet to the right and front, suddenly turned and made a gesture at the two of them. Amidst the snow and wind, it was difficult to hear what Thirteenth Wang had found. But, Fan Xian and Haitang could easily sense the disciple of the Sword Hut’s excitement.
In a snowy hollow, Fan Xian crouched down and carefully examined the traces Thirteenth Wang discovered. Digging out a whole from the covering ice and snow, they found the thing they had been looking for, the marks of a craftsman. It was a rail-like thing made from unknown materials. It remained incomparably smooth in the cold environment without any distortion in shape.
With Haitang’s support, Fan Xian stood and followed the rail into the depths of the ice and snow with his eyes all the way up. There, the snow and wind were heavy. The strange mountain range seemed to be broken in the middle and sunk in there. That was probably the end of the rail, right?
Thirteenth Wang found a few other rails by this one. All of them were made from the masterly material. No one knew what they were for. The three of them immediately grew nervous. In this cruelly cold place where few mortals reached, the sudden appearance of these strange rails naturally only had one possible explanation.
“Follow it up,” Fan Xian said in a raspy voice. His voice trembled slightly, but there was a calm in his eyes barely maintained through his powerful will.
There were no paths in the mountain. All around them was ice, snow, and wild winds. Any moment of carelessness could result in a fall down the mountain and end in shattered bones. It was fortunate that Fan Xian had brought Haitang and Thirteenth Wang, two powerful warriors. Otherwise, the might of the Earth was not one that he, an ill man, could endure.
The three of them forced down their nervousness and faint fear as they followed the smooth rail. They climbed toward the summit of the mountain range against the wind and snow. After an indeterminable amount of time, when Thirteenth Wang and Haitang felt that the zhenqi in their bodies had almost been completely drained by the icy cold rails, they suddenly sensed the light dim in front of their eyes.
At the end of the road with heavy snow falling, the day grew dim as wonders emerged. The three of them stared in a daze at stone stairs at the end of the rail. They were unable to speak for a long time. This was truly a remarkable feat for such a long set of stone steps to be hidden on a flat stage amidst the mountain range. If someone could actually come to the snowy mountain, it was impossible for them to see these stone steps from the foot of the mountain.
The Temple only appeared for a day or two. Did it mean that these stone steps would slide down the rails and bask under the sunlight, welcoming the worshippers from the secular world who had come forth through hardships?
The stone steps were carved from bluestone and had experienced thousands of years of baptism by ice. They were heavily damaged. However, a touching sense of beauty that made one’s heart tremble came from its age. Unlike the rails, seeing these seemingly endless stone steps made the three of them truly feel like they were entering the Temple.
As they slowly ascended by the steps, an indescribable atmosphere enveloped the three of them and the stone steps. Without communication, the three of them maintained their silence. Anyone, at the moment before the veil of the mysterious Temple was lifted, would feel excitement and fear. This excitement and fear of the unknown were instinctual to humankind. ( B oxnovel.c om )
Long and light gray eaves appeared above the stone steps. It reflected in their eyes. Haitang and Thirteenth Wang’s bodies froze slightly and paused. Fan Xian left Haitang’s support and calmly, to the point of insanity, stared at the eaves and headed up the bluestone steps.
Below the eaves was a black stone wall. It slowly revealed its true appearance with each of their steps upward. A feeling of dignity rose from the frozen ground with this temple and enveloped the entire space between heaven and earth.
The Temple finally appeared in front of them. It appeared calmly and naturally. It made them feel a sense of disbelief. Having looked thousands of times, one might hesitate to enter one’s dream. The Temple that thousands had searched for a thousand years had just appeared. Inevitably, it made one feel some odd emotions.
Standing on the last step, Fan Xian’s hands outside his fur coat trembled slightly. He looked somewhat woodenly at the temple in front of him and could not speak for a long time. At his side, Haitang and Thirteenth Wang had even more feelings they couldn’t hold back. With dazed expressions, they looked at the strange building.
The Temple was very big. It was impossible for the construction skills of the mortal world to build such a large temple. The tall, black walls were like black ice that would not melt for thousands of years. In front of their eyes, the eaves stretched all the way to the platform on top of the stone steps. Who knew how many secrets of history and the world was wrapped around it?
For such a large temple at the end of a stone staircase hidden deep within the mountain range, the platform was unbelievably large. It was even many times larger than the square in front of the Qing Kingdom, which could hold tens of thousands of people.
What directly gave the three of them the most powerful sense of power and majesty were the main gates of the Temple in front of them. This pair of doors were a full 67 feet tall and of unknown thickness. Its color was deep and ancient.
The three of them stood on the stone steps and were still dozens of feet from the front doors of the Temple. Since the doors were so tall and big, it made them feel that it was right in front of their eyes. The pressure was strong and made one want prostrate on the ground and offer endless worship.
Standing in front of the Temple on the platform, Fan Xian, Haitang, and Thirteenth Wang were all incredible youths. In front of this majestic square and temple, they were like three ants who had lost their way in the grass and abruptly raised their heads to see a tree blocking out the sun. Their shock took away all their words.
The only one who could maintain their calm was probably Fan Xian. After all, in his previous life, he had seen Jin Mao Tower and the Three Gorges Dam. He knew that the temple in front of him was certainly a wonder to those in this world. In his eyes, it was nothing more than a rather pretty building.
No water was sufficient once one had seen the boundless sea. None were clouds other than those at the summit. Back then, Fan Xian had been unable to explain these words to Zhuan Mohan. Standing in front of the Temple now, Fan Xian found a new explanation. Scope and experience determined the height at which one stood at. Because of past experiences, one would be difficult to surprise.
Fan Xian was not more talented than Haitang and Thirteenth Wang. Since he had experienced a more developed civilization in his previous life, his expression was much more composed. Even so, his emotions were still nervous and excited in front of the Temple. He stared fixedly at the main gates of the Temple and did not speak for a long time.
In an instant, he lowered his head and looked at the bluestone steps beneath his feet. He thought of decades ago when the broken Master Ku He had used his palm to slap the stone steps beneath his feet and cried out painfully. Now, the three of them were already much more composed.
After calming his emotions, Fan Xian suddenly raised his head. His eyes narrowed slightly. He stared at the large tablet hanging above the doors of the Temple.
Just as Xiao En said in the mountain cave, because of the passage of time, the words written on the large tablet couldn’t be seen clearly. There were only partial symbols. In Xiao En’s narrative, these symbols were perhaps mysterious edicts from the gods. In Fan Xian’s eyes, these symbols that finally appeared in front of him represented a more shocking discovery.
Fan Xian stared at the remaining “wu” character on the tablet in a daze and the three symbols beneath it. One up, one down. Another one up, one down. Then, two arcs put together. This was the full contents of this symbol.
His finger stretched out into the cold air and unconsciously traced these symbols. Ever since the fifth year of the Qing calendar, he had spent countless hours on this “wu” character and these three exact same symbols. He had asked Uncle Wu Zhu and Sigu Jian in the past, but there was too little information. He didn’t learn anything.
Now, this “wu” character and these symbols finally appeared in front of him. How could his emotions not be a mess?
Fan Xian took note of the position of the partial “wu” character and that of the three symbols. A light flashed through his mind like lightning and froze him. It was as if he couldn’t control his legs as he moved in a daze toward the doors of the Temple.
Haitang and Thirteenth Wang finally woke from the shock of seeing the true appearance of the Temple and immediately noticed Fan Xian’s odd behavior. They nervously followed him over toward the main doors.
Fan Xian’s gaze was still locked on the large tablet. He was muttering something and spoke more quickly. It was impossible to tell that he was ill. Two spots of high color had appeared on his face.
“It’s not some heavenly sign! If this isn’t the character ‘M,’ what else could it be?” Fan Xian’s tired eyes had been completely taken over by the light of complicated emotions. He gritted his teeth and laughed stupidly. Looking at the tablet, he finally understood what the Temple was.
He finally knew that the analysis he had never told anyone was correct. The rails in the snowy mountain were not used to deliver these heaven-ascending stone steps down. Instead, it was to move the entire Temple down.
The Temple also needed energy. It needed sunlight, which was why it would only appear in front of people after the long night. It was because of this that allowed Fan Xian to confirm that the Temple was not some kind of miracle. It was just a building that’s use was not yet determined.
More importantly, he finally confirmed that the land beneath his feet was still that blue planet. It was the one he had brought up unhappily to Da Bao one day under the boundless sky… Earth!
Fan Xian’s lips were white. In a trembling voice, he muttered to himself, “This is Earth, then what is that Temple? Three ‘M’s and a ‘wu’ character… There wasn’t such a large museum during my time…”
Boundless and endless emotions surged into his mind, making it difficult for him to bear the burden. His cheeks were red. His lips were white. His gaze was perplexed. The Temple was a very old museum. The “wu” character Xiao En remembered was not the hammer and sickle. The three “M”s were not heavenly symbols or a symbol of Russia’s spaceships. It was just the most commonly seen letter in the English alphabet.
There was clearly a “wu” character on the tablet of the Temple while the three English “M”s beneath were what remained of the word. The Temple was a museum!
Fan Xian stood woodenly in front of the Temple with his head raised to look at the large tablet, unable to believe his eyes. If the world he was in was Earth, when had this museum, which was clearly thousands and tens of thousands of years old, been built?
Where were the people who had built this museum? Why was there such an existence in the world? Why had this museum become the Temple everyone spoke of?
Thinking of the indistinct legends in human history, the Tianmai Beings, the emissaries of the Temple, and the martial secrets and chest his mother, Ye Qingmei, had stolen from the Temple, Fan Xian’s body began to tremble. He felt like he had found the truth of the greatest secret in this world. He also realized that there was still too much that couldn’t be explained.
Fan Xian started to cough. In front of the dark doors of the Temple that looked immensely like historical edicts, he bent his body. An angry and helpless voice rang out from his chest. “What the f*ck kind of museum is this?”
“This is a military museum.” An emotionless voice rang out from the doors of the Temple as if it only wanted to answer Fan Xian’s failure and panicked filled question.