“That’s roughly what happened,” Fang Shui’er concluded her report and put down the file folder on Li Yiming’s desk.
After hearing Lin Lu’s request, Li Yiming called Fang Shui’er over right away for a report of the events that had transpired.
“So there have been numerous appearances of monsters and beasts all throughout the country? Pan Junwei is losing ground despite trying his hardest? Not only that, they’ve actually succeeded in creating artificial guardians, and they’ve found a way to allow vampires to go under the sun?” Li Yiming was having a hard time believing the news.
‘What does it mean for this many monsters to appear? Even if the seal between the domains and our world has vanished, there shouldn't be this many monsters…’
“Where do these beasts come from?” Li Yiming turned toward Bai Ze.
“From all of you.” Bai Ze answered bluntly, still concentrated on her mobile game.
“What do you mean?” Li Yiming did not understand.
“Basically, you’re confused because you didn’t expect this many monsters to appear, right?” Bai Ze shrugged their shoulders and finally put down her phone.
“Yes. From what I've experienced, the domains are not only formed due to malevolent wills. The domains I've experienced have been motivated by love, a will to protect, and even goodness…”
“Clearly, you don't understand the situation. Or should I say that you're lucky. Most of the domains that exist out there are manifested out of pure evil wills. You can ask her if you don't believe me.” Bai Ze said as she pointed at Fang Shui’er.
“Most of the domains I’ve been through have been… living hells…” Fang Shui’er said with a grave voice.
“I don't get it. If most of the domains result from the wills of people, then why are there so many evil domains out there? Is it because domains are more easily formed from evil and twisted desires?”
“That's an interesting question. I'm not a human, but do you really believe that humans are intrinsically good-willed?” Bai Ze smiled mockingly.
“Is that not the case?” Li Yiming had been led to believe that humanity was good by nature for his entire upbringing.
“Cute. Answer this question, then. What has been the most important part of your education?”
“The most important part…” Li Yiming only realized then that regardless of the source of the education, be it school, religion, or even media, the most important aspect was not technical skills or knowledge, but rather ethics. Everything stressed at the importance of being good person who obeyed the rules of society. ‘But then… the reason has to be because education is needed to reign in the naturally selfish and evil desires of human beings, be it greed, lust, or jealousy. As human civilization progressed. But these desires are unleashed within domains…’
“When the seal existed, you could say that most of these evil desires were contained within domains. But now…” Fang Shui’er said.
“In today’s world, we don't care that much about morals when we can make a quick buck, do we?”
“What should we do now?” Fang Shui’er knew that they needed to do something before panic spread into the general population. Although she had been handling the organization in Li Yiming’s absence, she could not make such big decisions on her own.
“Killing a few beasts is easy, but the nature of humanity is not something we can change, or even hope to change.” Li Yiming knew that if they were ever to commit to the fight, it will be an endless and fruitless endeavor.
“Pure Water Herb Hall is expanding quickly. We've essentially taken over everything Yunyu Corporation had left in this city.” Fang Shui’er stated.
“You've done a good job, better than I ever could. I think it's better if I leave this to you.” Li Yiming was in no mood to discuss such things.
“I'll report to you another time then.” Fang Shui’er nodded with a smile, feeling that Li Yiming now had full confidence in her.
“Is there anyone who specializes in gathering information among the new recruits?”
“Yes. Do you want me to call him over?”
“Please. I have something I'd like to ask him.”
A boy who seemed to be a teenager soon came into the tea shop with his laptop. He looked at Li Yiming with reverence, as the latter had already become a legend among guardians due to his encounter with Yun Yiyuan. In fact, most of them had chosen to join the organization after hearing about Li Yiming’s might.
“Xiao Feng, I presume? You also have some kind of hacking talent?” Li Yiming asked as a young man resembled Eyeglasses quite a lot.
“Oh, sorry. I'm a reporter.”
“He has a talent that allows him to communicate with people's minds directly. This allows him to quickly earn the trust of other people. He has a very resourceful network. Is that what you need…?” Fang Shui’er explained.
“Of course, Thank you. I was just a little curious, that's it. He's a perfect fit,” Li Yiming smiled at the young man.
“Alright, I want you to investigate a certain police officer who has recently been put to disciplinary actions after becoming involved with the theft of a jade stone. It would be very helpful if you could obtain some information on the matter.
“That police officer? Got it.” Xiao Feng noted down the details of the request.
“Actually, it's not about the police officer. It's about that rock. I want as much information as possible about the way it was stolen and the possible suspects. Even better if you can get a picture of it.” When he heard about the case from Lin Lu, his attention was instantly piqued, as he knew that the rock in question must have been the vessel for the seal which split domains from the real world.
“Okay, I just need some time. Can I use the internet here?” Xiao Feng took out his laptop, eager to earn Li Yiming’s recognition.
“Thank you. I'll leave you at it. I need to go get myself changed and rest a little.” Li Yiming went upstairs, as he was at his limits.
* * *
On the lonely peak of a small island in the middle of the ocean, a man sat on his knees silently, looking at a small crater in front of him. Based on the markings surrounding it, it seemed like the crater had been filled with a giant rock up until recently.
After a long while and one last bow in the direction of the crater, Wu Yun removed his oiled up work outfit, revealing his naked body.
Several scars ran down his back, not leaving a single inch unscathed. Although the wounds have already healed up, someone looking at them would undoubtedly be shocked.
Wu Yun folded his work outfit into a neat pile and placed it down on the ground. He then removed his gloves and put them on top of the pile. Finally, he closed his eyes and put his hands together in front of his chest.
“Open!” Wu Yun yelled as he split his hands, and a large, metallic blade appeared between his palms. He caressed the blade with his hands gently, as if it was the hand of his lover. Heaven’s Blade - This was the origin of his name.
“Go!” Wu Yun’s expression suddenly stiffened. A loud explosion was heard as the blade turned into countless orbs of light.
“If I'm not going to get the last three moves, then I don't even want their first three. I'll give up my weapon and my life for a chance to cut you down after you've ascended…” Wu Yun said as he opened his eyes wide and stared above, his gaze piercing through the thick layers of clouds: Heaven’s Blade would deliver one last blow, this time burning his soul along with it.
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