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"So, it's Elder Yang Xuan! I have long heard of you!" Mo Yuan quickly clasped his fist.

"Long heard of what? Have you heard of me before? Do you know who I am?" Zhang Xuan replied curtly.

He had simply brought the alias that he often used on the Master Teacher Continent here as well, but the other party could still make such a statement. It seemed like those in the Firmament were not that honest.

"This..." Mo Yuan's face reddened upon hearing those words.

Those words were just pleasantries to alleviate the awkwardness in the air! How disrespectful would it be if he were to claim that he had never heard of the other party before?

Yet, the other party asked such a question right after, leaving him completely stumped.

"Alright, you can spare me those formalities. Since I'm acquainted with your principal, there's no need for you to be so polite to me. I don't have the habit of making things difficult for juniors. However, it just so happens that I have some things that I might need your help with," Zhang Xuan said.

"Elder, please feel free to speak. As long as it's within my means, I'll do my best to accomplish what you ask of me," Mo Yuan replied politely.

"My students are on a mission here at the moment, but as they are unfamiliar with the local geography, they are a bit lost," Zhang Xuan replied. "I fear that it would make them overly dependent on me if I were to appear and resolve their issue so easily, and it happens that there are some urgent matters that I need to attend to as well. So, I hope that you can help me guide them around and, if possible, ensure that they return safely to Twilight City.

"Of course, I don't intend for you to help me only to get nothing in return. I'll give you a detailed analysis on the problems surrounding your cultivation, and as for whether you are able to resolve them or find a more suitable path for yourself, that'll depend solely on your talent and capability."

"Thank you, elder!" Mo Yuan clasped his fist in excitedly.

The main reason bottlenecks happened was due to a lack of awareness of one's own condition.

If someone could just offer him some guidance by the side, even without giving out the correct answer, he was still confident that he would be able to overcome his current problems.

As such, he was extremely thankful to the other party for offering such help.

As for leading the other party's students back to Twilight City, that was not a problem at all. He was going to have to take his students back there at the end of their mission anyway, so it was not an inconvenience.

On top of that, if he could get close to the other party's students, he might be able to establish a connection with the powerful expert standing before him!

"I'm glad that you are willing to help. For now, it'll do for you to remain here. Based on my estimations, they should be heading here very soon," Zhang Xuan replied with a nod.

Then, he turned around, and just as he was about to leave, he suddenly released a powerful aura that gushed right down to the heavens, reminiscent of the natural dominating pressure that dragons emanated.


Taken aback by the abrupt happenings, Mo Yuan quickly turned his head over anxiously.

"Since you have given me your word, I hope that you will do your best to guarantee their safety. If I find a single strand of hair missing from my students... You understand, right?"

With his back facing the crowd, his voice sounded nonchalant. However, paired with the overwhelming pressure that he was emanating, his nonchalant tone felt indescribably terrifying.

"Elder, please rest assured! I'll surely give it my all to not let you down!" Mo Yuan replied grimly.

"I'll discreetly instruct one of my students to pass my analysis over to you," Zhang Xuan added before walking away with leisurely footsteps.

Despite his relaxed footsteps, his movements were not slow at all. In just a few moments, he had already disappeared amid the woods.

Only after his silhouette had vanished completely did Mo Yuan finally wipe away the cold sweat trickling down his face.

The aura that Zhang Xuan had emanated was so terrifying that even ten of him would not suffice as a match for him.

It was fortunate that he had not acted recklessly, or else he and his students might have lost their lives.

"Teacher, is that Elder Yang Xuan... really that formidable?" the young lady who had stepped forward earlier asked Mo Yuan doubtfully.

She came from a huge clan, and she had never liked those who put on airs before her. Somehow, she found it hard to believe that Yang Xuan was really that incredible a person.

"Formidable? That would be an understatement. He's terrifyingly powerful!" Mo Yuan replied with a shake of his head. "Alright, you should get on with whatever you're doing. Have a good meal and rest well. We'll be heading back to Twilight City tomorrow morning, got it?"

"We're already heading back? But we are just about to reach the destination of our mission!" The young lady was stunned.

If they turned back, was that not as good as giving up on the mission despite their progress?

"I was supposed to protect you all from behind, so the fact that I have appeared before you means that you have already failed the mission. However, given the peculiar circumstances, I'll request the academy to give special considerations so that you'll still receive marks accordingly," Mo Yuan replied.

The mission that they were going to carry out was not completely risk-free. He would not be able to take responsibility if something really happened to the elder's students.

Since that was the case, it would be better for them to return immediately.

Thank you, Teacher."

Hearing that they would still be receiving marks for the mission, the crowd heaved a sigh of relief.

The very reason they had gone on the mission was to earn marks, and since they could acquire them without going through danger, there was no reason for them to complain.

So, the youths continued preparing their food and encampment to rest for the night.

Not too long later, the rustling of leaves echoed from the woods. Following that, a group of people walked over.

"Are you Mo Yuan laoshi? I am Zhang Xuan, Yang Xuan laoshi's student. I heard from my teacher that you are acquainted with him, so I made my way over here to ask for your assistance..."

As those words sounded, a tall silhouette emerged from the woods. Fourteen other people followed close behind him.

"So, it's Brother Zhang Xuan! This way, please!" Mo Yuan clasped his fist as he assessed the group with a slightly doubtful frown on his face.

To his surprise, Elder Yang Xuan's students seemed to be... a little weak!

It was no wonder the other party had requested his help in ensuring the safety of his students. It was really a miracle that they could survive amid the dangerous mountain with their current cultivation levels.

At the same time, as the young lady behind Mo Yuan caught sight of Zhao Ya, her complexion immediately turned awful. She quickly turned her eyes to the other youths around her, and indeed, all of their eyes were fixated on Zhao Ya.

It was normal for those who were good-looking to be more welcomed by others.

"We have prepared some food here, so please feel free to join us for our dinner." The white-robed young man invited them over.

Zhao Ya and the others shot a glance at Zhang Xuan, and upon receiving his nod, they swiftly took their seats. They had been hiding in the cavern for quite a few days now, so it felt exhilarating for them to be out once more.

"Mo Yuan laoshi, this is the compilation that my teacher instructed me to pass on to you. He says that you can alter your cultivation technique according to what is written on top first, and he'll pass you the complete version the next time he sees you at Twilight City!" Zhang Xuan said as he passed a leaf over.

There were some words written on the leaf using black ink.

After Mo Yuan was done reading through the contents on the leaf, his eyes narrowed in astonishment.

The analysis that Yang Xuan had provided was far more detailed than he could have imagined. As long as he made modifications according to the errors he saw, he should be able to resolve his physical trauma in no time. Once that happened, his fighting prowess would surely soar!

"Please help me relay my gratitude to your Elder Yang for his help!" Mo Yuan replied.

Of course, he knew the other party's intentions for only giving him only half of the analysis. He would have to prove his worth in order to obtain the other half.

Despite that, he did not feel any grudge toward Yang Xuan. If anything, he felt much more assured.

A person who paid heed to even the minor details in order to ensure the safety of his students was bound to be a respectable individual. There was definitely no harm in getting to know a person like that!

Mo Yuan's students had brought quite a bit of food for the mission, and Mo Yuan himself also headed out to hunt down a few divine beasts to supplement the dinner. As such, it became the first proper feast that Zhang Xuan and the others had enjoyed ever since they arrived at the Firmament.

Yuan Tao also fully unleashed his appetite this time around. The sheer amount of food he ate left the others wondering if there was a mystical beast hiding inside his stomach.

It was fortunate that Little Chick was still in hibernation. Otherwise, Mo Yuan and the others would have found the prepared feast devoured before they could enjoy it.

Zhao Ya and the others were around the same age as Mo Yuan's students, and the natural environment they were in created the ideal atmosphere for conversation. As such, it did not take long before they started chatting with one another.

They had heard of the situation from Zhang Xuan earlier, so they knew what could be said and what could not be said. As such, they were able to avoid incurring the suspicion of Mo Yuan and his students.

"You rascals have been asking me about the current political situation in the Firmament. Since Brother Zhang Xuan here asked me about it earlier as well, why don't we hold a quick lesson here?"

After filling their stomachs, the crowd gathered in a circle, and Mo Yuan began speaking with a smile on his lips.

The Firmament was vast and boundless. Even Twilight City was nothing more than a minor dot on the map. As such, even though most of Mo Yuan's students had come from major clans in Twilight City, they did not know much about the Firmament as a whole.

Zhang Xuan also turned his gaze over.

Throughout the entire dinner, he had been trying to steer the conversation naturally in that direction so as to get Mo Yuan talking, and it seemed like he had succeeded in doing so.

"The Firmament can be divided into nine major powers, and they are collectively known as the Nine Skies!" Mo Yuan said.

"I know! Are you referring to the Nine Skies Ten Monarchs?" As if to flaunt his knowledge to the ladies he had just met, the white-robed young man chirped in at this moment.

At the same time, the other young lady of Mo Yuan's students clenched her fists indignantly upon seeing this sight.

"Indeed, I am referring to the Nine Skies Ten Monarchs." Mo Yuan nodded in response. "The Nine Skies consist of the central Sky of Freedom, the eastern Sky of Cloud Dragon, the southern Sky of Spirit Origin, the western Sky of Adamant Gold, the southern Sky of Netherworld, the southeast Sky of Blazing Sun, the northeast Sky of Heavenly Sword, the southwest Sky of Linglong, and our northwest Sky of Drifting Specters!

"The Nine Skies represent nine major powers, and they are headed by nine monarchs. Every single one of the monarchs wields absolute power that allows them to look upon the world loftily. They are existences who are respected by all."

As Mo Yuan spoke, there was a hint of respect in his eyes.

Based on what Zhang Xuan had heard thus far, it seemed like the nine monarchs were equivalent to the heads of the Azure's Six Sects, existences who could make the world tremor with just a stomp of their foot.

"Teacher, I heard that the peerless Heaven Subjugating Monarch rose into their ranks recently, making it the Nine Skies Ten Monarchs now!" another one of Mo Yuan's students added.

"You're right. The Heaven Subjugating Monarch only appeared in recent years," Mo Yuan nodded.

"Speaking of the Heaven Subjugating Monarch, one really has to acknowledge the unbelievable talent he possesses. In just a few years after the world heard of his name, he ascended through the ranks like a brilliant shooting star. He has already forced eight of the monarchs to acknowledge his identity, meaning that he only lacks the acknowledgement of the Sky of Freedom's monarch. As long as he can receive that monarch's acknowledgement, it will mean a mass reshuffling of the power distribution in the Firmament."

"Nine Skies Ten Monarchs?" Zhang Xuan nodded contemplatively. "Those monarchs are existences so far away from us. I wonder just how much stronger they are than the rest of us..."

As soon as those words were spoken, one of Mo Yuan's students immediately nodded in agreement as he curiously asked, "Mo Yuan laoshi, how powerful are the Ten Monarchs? I heard that they are able to crush a major city with just a single finger of theirs. Is that true?"

"Of course!" Mo Yuan nodded matter-of-factly. "Look, the rest of you are currently low-tier Gods whereas I am a middle-tier God. As for high-tier Gods, our principal is one such example. You should know about this, right?"

The crowd nodded in agreement.

"Beyond high-tier Gods are the Celestial Gods, and they are divided into low-tier, middle-tier, and high-tier.

"Above the Celestial Gods are the God Kings. They aren't divided into low-tier, middle-tier, and high-tier; they are categorized into Ordinary God Kings and Conferred God Kings. Conferred God Kings can be considered the top powerhouses of the Firmament. Our entire Sky of Drifting Specters might not even have ten Conferred God Kings in total!" Mo Yuan explained excitedly.

"And the only ones to stand above the Conferred God Kings are the God Monarchs... They are the only experts recognized by the heavens, and their births are predetermined by the heavens. There have been no more or no less of them since time immemorial, and it has been expected to remain this way till the end of eternity. There's only one way for new God Monarchs to emerge, and that was for an individual to earn the acknowledgement of the pre-existing God Monarchs. That's also the reason the Heaven Subjugating Monarch is challenging all of the other monarchs one after another!"

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