Chapter 114: Life and Death Chasm
After heading out of the inspection area, the old grandpa led us through a forest path surrounded by an assortment of colorful plants. These plants were large-sized, but gorgeous, yet we were warned not to go near them as they were poisonous. It seems the entire border of the continent was decorated with these pretty, poisonous plant life to serve as an artificial barrier.
We strolled through the beautiful forest scenery while the old grandpa began his lecture on the powers not to offend on the continent. There were blah blah blah this clan and yadi-yada that clan. Avoid provoking this, try not to poke that. Then, there’s if beep or meep dares to bully Ling’er, the old man will show his iron fist. To summarize, even if we’re in trouble, the old grandpa’s got our back for most cases unless it has to do with the Shen Wang Clan, the top clan and also the ones who are behind the Shen Sect, the most powerful sect in the Shen Ren continent. Of course, the most important point was simply, stay in more and less trouble will come our way. Err … is this old grandpa trying to train us to be hikikomori?
It was nearly an hour long stroll before we finally left the forest and were greeted with the typical, enormous cultivation city. Unlike the ones back in my home continent, this city actually has cultivators flying in and out unrestricted. There were no worries security-wise as according to the old grandpa, there’s an intangible monitoring power created through a secret manual called the Art Teafish Show that was believed to have its origins in an ancient sect called Telligence. The Art Teafish Show force is constantly monitoring every part of the city and criminals that dare to step into the safe zone will be locked on to immediately. Then, depending on the danger level, the Art Teafish Show force may automatically request for reinforcement from the Shen Sect that has branches near every city.
Fortunately, my face was not on the wanted list. Not that it matters for now as our destination was not within the city anyways. After we left the forest which apparently had a space locking mechanism, the old grandpa was now able to use his powers to travel through space again. Hence, we fast traveled to our destination with a sweep of the old grandpa’s hand …
“Welcome to the magnificent Tian Nan Monastery. This wonderful abode of mine that I have spent years of effort on will become your home from now on,” the old grandpa grandly introduced with a proud smile.
In front of us stood a small, humble temple with a plain courtyard in front. A little monk who was sweeping the courtyard bowed respectfully in our direction before returning to his work of sweeping what seems to be an already clean courtyard.
Noticing my queer stare, the old grandpa introduced, “That’s Xiao Pang. He was a genius with a bright future in cultivation. However, during one of his exploration of a secret realm, he was cursed by an unknown power that him fear uncleanliness to an extreme degree. Afterwards, he focused on cleaning everything around him so much that he had no time to cultivate. After his clan abandoned him, fate led him to meet me so I took him in out of kindness.”
I nodded in understanding as I wondered why that curse sounds so familiar, like a certain disease. I couldn’t help but ask, “Out of kindness huh? So, have you tried to treating this disease of his?”
The old grandpa looked at me like I was an idiot before replying, “Why would I waste effort treating him? Isn’t he perfectly fine cleaning my temple just like this?”
Oi! You took him in just for free labor didn’t you?! My mouth couldn’t help but twitch, but I decided not to comment as I felt that having someone doing the cleaning for me would be a good thing as well. cough
“Alright, enough dilly dallying, let’s head in so I can show you two your rooms,” the old grandpa stated as he began to stroll in; however, he paused and glanced back not long afterwards when he noticed the two young ones who were not following him, “Is something wrong?”
Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with the temple itself. It’s not like it was too shabby nor were we against the idea of living in a temple. The problem was the location that the temple was built on, the edge of what seemed to be a cliff. Right behind the temple is an enormous chasm that spanned miles. I didn’t really have any good experiences near chasms so far, and with how close the temple was to the edge, it felt like a gentle wind could blow the temple into the chasm. I certainly don’t want to end up in a chasm in the midst of my sleep.
As if noticing our concerns, the old grandpa chuckled as he stated, “So you were worried about that. That is the Life and Death Chasm.”
Oi, oi, oi, what is with that ominous name!
The old grandpa continued, “There is nothing to fear. I have been living next to this Life and Death Chasm for years and nothing has happened to this old man.”
“Of course nothing will happen to you. With your cultivation level, even if you fall in, you will still teleport back out, but what about us,” I could not help but retort.
The old grandpa chuckled again, “Certainly that would be the case for other chasms, but not this one. The Life and Death Chasm has a special unknown power that serves as a barrier for the chasm. Non-living objects can’t pass this barrier and no one can get through this barrier unless they meet a specific requirement.”
Oh, so it has a barrier. I sigh in relief, but still decided to ask for more info for my own safety. After all, I don’t know if Mr. Aura will trigger that specific unknown requirement and make me fall into the chasm just for a power-up or separation arc. Hence, I asked, “So, what would that requirement be?”
The old grandpa’s smile faded away as a solemn expression appeared on his face, “Legend has it that those who enter the chasm has a chance to receive a new leash on life. After many trials through time, it was discovered that only those with life approaching its end can pass through the barrier and seek the chance for a new life. It was also proven that it was not simply a legend as there was evidence of some who were reborn like phoenixes …”
So, only those who are near death can pass the barrier, and they even might come back to life fully! There’s literally no demerit to the chasm. Well, that’s a relief.
“Well now that your worries are answered, quit dilly dallying. Even this old man is not worried about falling into the chasm at his age, let alone two youngsters like you. You two still have a long life ahead of you. Why would you have to worry about this,” the old grandpa stated before strolling into the temple while grumbling to himself.
I glanced over at Ling’er who was staring at the chasm with a melancholic look. Maybe the notion of death reminded her of her family. I could not help but gently grasp her hands and gave her a small tug. Ling’er glanced over at me and gave me a smile to assure me she was alright. I smiled back as I stated, “Don’t worry, you still have me. From now on, let us not be separated even by Life and Death.”
Ling’er gently nodded back as my heart warmed. Then, we strolled into our new home together.