Chapter 657: Two Stone Tablets
Translator: StarveCleric Editor: Millman97
The further down they proceeded, the colder they felt. A sinister sensation gripped them as though they had stepped into a graveyard.
It was fortunate that they were only surrounded by ordinary cavern walls. There were no mechanisms, formations, or any other traps, and this left them sighing in relief.
After descending for several hundred meters, they arrived at a vast underground chamber.
Xing Yuan took out another handful of Night Illumination Pearls and threw them forward.
The Night Illumination Pearls rolled across the entire chamber, bringing dim light to the room.
Due to the high cultivation of the group, they were still able to see the sight before them clearly despite the dim illumination.
Not too far from the stone stairs was a small bridge with a small stream flowing through it. Oddly, despite being sealed for innumerable years, the air in the underground chamber wasn't stale at all.
The group had expected to encounter pungent and poisonous gas that had accumulated over the years, but never had they thought that the air down here would the same as the air at the surface.
"Everyone, be careful. This underground chamber was probably built to house many people. Otherwise, it's impossible for it to be so well-ventilated," said Wu Zhen.
"To house many people?"
The others frowned.
"That's right. If that's not the case, there's no need to go through the effort of drawing a stream from the river over here or ventilate it so thoroughly!" Wu Zhen explained.
Specializing in mechanisms, he knew how difficult it was to ventilate and draw a stream into an underground chamber.
If it was just a temporary lodging for a small group of people, given how vast the space was, they wouldn't run the risk of suffocating. There would be no need for them to go through so much effort to ventilate the place so thoroughly.
Hearing his explanation, Zhang Xuan nodded in agreement.
He had visited the soul oracle tomb previously, and it did feel much more stifling than here. The airflow was clearly worse than here.
"Could it be that there was more than one culprit who kidnapped Grandmaster Wu Yangzi?"
Luo Qiqi blinked her eyes in shock.
Based on her investigation, this underground chamber was closely related to Wu Yangzi, and chances were that he was kidnapped and brought here back then Given that the environment was built to house many people at once, could it be that Wu Yangzi was held hostage by a group of people?
"That I can't confirm"
Wu Zhen shook his head. "There's a stone tablet over there, let's go and take a look."
Right in front of the bridge stood an average-sized stone tablet. Under the dim illumination, they could still vaguely see the inscriptions on it.
Upon walking up, three huge words came into sight.
"Yearning Abode Lodge?"
Luo Qiqi frowned.
Underground chambers were usually either tombs or a secret gathering location of a power. What did these out-of-place three words mean then?
"These words are a little weird."
Ye Qian frowned.
"Oh?" Hearing his interjection, everyone turned to look at him.
Even though this crown prince was only a half 5-star master teacher, he had already reached the level of 5-star in the Way of Painting. Thus, he possessed an exceptional sensitivity toward matters that were in the field of painting.
"Words can bring out one's true thoughts and mental state. These three words have reached the third level 'Infused Intentions', thus allowing one to clearly feel the emotions of the writer then. The feeling I'm getting is that the writer feels out-of-place and wishes to stay away from the temporal world," Ye Qian said.
Zhang Xuan nodded. He felt the same feelings from the words as well.
Yearning Abode Lodge, both the face meaning of those words and the emotions behind them reflected the writer's intent to return to his hometown.
As a skilled painter himself, he could see this much even without the Library of Heaven's Path.
"Longing for one's home? It seems like this really is the underground chamber where Grandmaster Wu Yangzi was brought!"
Luo Qiqi's eyes lit up. "Most probably, he was kidnapped by someone, and his yearning for Hongyuan Empire compelled him to leave behind these words. But regretfully, until the day of his death, he wasn't able to return there."
"Your explanation does sound plausible." Xing Yuan and the others nodded.
The very fact that an underground chamber was called Yearning Abode Lodge was very bizarre in itself. However, if the person who wrote this was here against their will, that did explain it.
It was very possible, and these few words were left behind by Wu Yangzi to express his longing for his home.
"I disagree with your view. On top of one's longing for his home, there is a strong killing intent reminiscent to that in a battlefield infused into these words as well" Ye Qian frowned. "Grandmaster Wu Yangzi was known to be an amiable person, so it's unlikely for such savage killing intent to originate from him!"
Grandmaster Wu Yangzi had spent his entire life accompanying metal and weapons. Even though his craft was centered around weapons of slaughter, he himself didn't carry such a disposition.
However, these three words had glaring killing intent infused into them, and that in itself was intriguing.
"In truth, I think that it's precisely due to the presence of the killing intent that makes it even more likely that it was Grandmaster Wu Yangzi who left it behind!"
Xing Yuan chuckled. "For a proud 6-star blacksmith to be kidnapped and locked in this kind of unholy location, it would instead be bizarre if he carried no killing intent at all!"
Ye Qian was taken aback.
Indeed. For a person of such standing to be captured and locked in this kind of gloomy underground chamber, it was only natural that he would feel indignant and motivated to slaughter those who put him into his current state.
Luo Qiqi spoke grimly.
"As a 6-star pinnacle blacksmith, Elder Wu Yangzi's cultivation had long reached Saint realm. Given that even a person of his strength was trapped here Everyone, be careful. I fear that this underground chamber might not be as simple as it seems!"
Everyone nodded as tension built within them.
How could an underground chamber that could even lock a Saint realm cultivator possibly be anything simple? Even though three thousand years had passed, such means still weren't something that a bunch of Consonant Spirit realm and Cosmos Bridge realm fellows could withstand.
After looking around the stone tablet and confirming that there was nothing useful around it, the group advanced forward.
At the back of the group, Zhang Xuan spared another glance to the words on the stone tablet and frowned. He walked up to it, touched it lightly with his finger, and seemingly realizing something, a deep frown surfaced on his face.
Passing the stone tablet, he proceeded onto the bridge.
The bridge wasn't too long, but the current of the stream below was surprisingly swift. The swishing sound of the water felt exceptionally pleasant amidst this ghastly quiet atmosphere.
Wu Zhen turned around to nod at the group before placing the Thousand Utility Umbrella in front to scout the way. The others followed tightly behind him.
At the opposite side of the bridge was a vast hall, and within it was yet another stone tablet.
Holding onto a Night Illumination Pearl, Xing Yuan walked forward, and under a dim yellow light, he saw three large words inscribed on it: Burying Sorrow Lodge.
Seeing the words on it, the group blinked in astonishment.
Was this the name of the underground chamber as well? Does this place have two names?
Yearning Abode Lodge previously, and Burying Sorrow Lodge now, what exactly was the true name of this place?
"These three words are calm and upright. Only by finding joy again can one abandon sorrow; this means that there's something inside that he seeks which can help him to overcome his sadness"
Ye Qian took a look and analyzed the words. "If I'm not mistaken, these must be the words left behind by those who imprisoned Grandmaster Wu Yangzi!"
"You're right. Since they had imprisoned Grandmaster Wu Yangzi to forge weapons or artifacts for them, naturally, they would be overjoyed enough to forget even their sorrows"
Xing Yuan nodded.
Luo Qiqi and Princess Fei-er hesitated for a moment before nodding in agreement as well.
This was the most plausible explanation for the entire matter.
Just that, they still couldn't understand why there was a stone tablet with different inscribing on each end of the bridge?
After looking at the stone tablet, they took a look around the hall. However, it was entirely empty, and there was nothing to be seen at all.
"Let me take a look!"
Wu Zhen walked around the walls, knocking on them as he passed them by, but he soon shook his head and said, "There isn't any mechanism here."
"Could there be a hidden formation then?"
With a formation compass in hand, Princess Fei-er also explored the area, but her face slowly darkened.
"There isn't any formation here either."
"It can't be that this is it to the underground chamber?"
Given the effort made to set up such a formidable hidden formation outside, dig out this deep underground chamber, setting up the ventilation, and drawing a river in here, all there was here was this big hall?
If that was the case, wouldn't this be way too pointless?
"With just this empty hall, we won't be able to determine whether Wu Yangzi once lived here or not. If that's the case, it means that our mission is a failure"
Luo Qiqi frowned.
She had confidence in Wu Zhen and Princess Fei-er's capabilities.
Since the both of them said that there was nothing here, that was likely to be the case.
However given that this area was completely empty, there was nothing they could use to gauge whether Wu Yangzi had been here or not. How were they supposed to report this matter when they return?
What was even more bizarre was that if there was nothing here, where in the world did those weapons that were forged using Grandmaster Wu Yangzi's unique forging technique come from?
"Indeed. To think that all we would see was a mere empty hall after all the effort we took coming here."
Xing Yuan also shook his head in disappointment.
He thought that they would be able to find some clues by coming here, but there was nothing more than two stone tablets and a small bridge here. Was their mission destined to end in failure?
Just as everyone was shaking their heads in disappointment, Luo Qiqi suddenly said, "Teacher, did you manage to discern anything at all?"
Everyone quickly shifted their gazes, only to see that Zhang Xuan was standing before the second stone tablet once more. The latter stretched out his hand and touched the tablet.
Zhang Xuan turned around and said, "I find that there's something very bizarre with these two stone tablets."
Everyone walked forward and gathered around the stone tablets once more.
Zhang Xuan revealed his deduction.
"Un. Yearning Abode Lodge and Burying Sorrow Lodge If I'm not mistaken, it should represent two different roads. The words left on the stone tablets are probably a choice offered to those who stumble upon this area."
"Now that you say it, that does seem possible!"
Everyone was taken aback.
Of the entire underground chamber, the most conspicuous objects were the stone tablets. Perhaps, there was some kind of mechanism hidden within it.
"Let me take a look!"
Wu Zhen hesitated for a moment before walking up.
He took out a Night Illumination Pearl and carefully studied the stone tablet. Suddenly his eyes lit up.
"There does seem to be a mechanism hidden in here."
"Perhaps this mechanism will open up a passageway that lead us to another location. In other words, we are only at the entrance of the underground chamber!"
Everyone's interest was immediately piqued, and they hurried forward to the tablet to take a look as well.
Library Of Heaven's Path Chapter 657
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