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Chapter 1: A Ying Of Time [I]

Deep in soul meditation, Zhang Xiu Ying's body radiated a powerful silver aura as she continued sitting in a lotus position. Above her was the golden halo of her heritage, while her body was surrounded by the blue flames of her elemental energy. She was inside a cultivation chamber of an ancient cave. That was the place she called her home. The cave was carved inside a small hill at the outskirt of the Sky-Spring village, in the southern province of Lijiang. One of the three continents in a world known as Anyang.

Planet Anyang was a major mortal world of the humans. A world of three continents; Lijiang, Nanjing and Kaifeng. Each of these continent was was divided into four smaller provinces; the northern, southern, eastern and western provinces. Every province was further categorised into cities, and cities into large and small villages. Sky-Spring was one of those large villages of the humans.

Whoosh!

Suddenly, Zhang Xiu Ying opened her eyes and extended her hands forward before moving them in circles. A large ball of blue fire began to gather inside the space between her hands. She continued moving her hands until the flaming ball turned to liquid orb of blue fire. Slowly, she released the flames and absorbed the essence of the fire energy into her silver core.

"Timeless aura." 

Zhang Xiu Ying softly muttered before releasing the absorbed energy in a gentle body blast. She opened her eyes and nodded in satisfaction. Despite using a broken cultivation technique, its power couldn't be discarded. The technique absorbed two different cosmic energies into the body before combining them to expand the dantian and the meridians inside the body. The aftermath was insane amount of highly condensed Chi in the dantian.

"What more could I ask for?"

She thoughtfully asked herself before floating into the mid-air while spreading her awareness around herself. She sensed all the presence around their hill, and as far as some of the neighbouring villages. Her divine sense was becoming more stronger with each passing day. She smiled brightly.

"Asuran power."

Her father was Zhang Li Qiang, a swordsman from the Eagle-Blade clan, and a peak-stage copper core[Tongxin]. And her mother was Zhang Wang Jing, who also was at the peak-stage of the copper core. But her Asuran bloodline was from her mother's ancestral lineage. The Phoenix clan.

A powerful clan from the Nanjing continent. She had been thinking about her mother's clan lately, but not of her mother's immediate clan. Rather, of a member of her distant clan. The Nanjing monarch.

Still in the mid-air, Zhang Xiu Ying took one blue Crystal from her spatial sac and deposited it in her mouth with a crunch. Strong energy stormed her dantian, making her close her eyes as she began to circulate the energy, using the Timeless Soul technique. She was getting stronger, but she knew it wouldn't be enough. She must look for the monarch of Nanjing.

Her ancestral uncle. 

She had never seen a mornach before, but she was aware of their unparalleled powers on the mortal plane. More determined than before, she knew she would have to risk it and seek out the hegemon before it was too late. He must know about their mortal predicaments, and the prophecies of the diviners. What if he already knew about the prophecies? What if he wouldn't be happy to see her at all?

"Well, so be it."

Zhang Xiu Ying let out a deep breath as she shook her head in despair. She had no other options. As she returned to the ground, she wondered why her distant relative would even refuse ascension in the first place. Why did he chose to be an hegemon forever when he could've been a god?

Maybe, there was something she wasn't comprehending about ascension. Not one, but all the three supreme hegemons of planet Anyang had refused ascension and remained on the mortal plane. They would never become deities in the future. Different tales for different folks. Nonetheless, she was she was happy to have an hegemon as her ancestral relative. He could be the solution they were after.

"Nanjing."

Zhang Xiu Ying uttered as she left the cultivation chamber using her divine evasion technique. Stepping outside the cave, the sight made her smile as usual. Despite the great darkness and sadness that hung over her family, she still found joy in the little things of life. She took out her sword and performed the Seven-Petal steps before thrusting her sword forward.

Hundreds of flaming dragonflies flew upwards into the sky. Zhang Xiu sheathed her sword and leaped into the air to join them in their flight. As the dragonflies slowly faded into nothingness, she returned to the ground with a smile on her face.

"Life."

While looking around the beautiful landscape, the good memories of the past came flooding into her mind.

She remembered being a young pregnant lady, when her parents moved to the Sky-Spring village with her. Upon arrival, they had bought their land from the owner who was a young man who was eager of moving to the city. Although the bargained price had been very steep, costing them most of their remaining ancestral inheritance, they loved the quiet location of the vast land.

They had decided the large areas of land would be ideal for the farming of millet and the rearing of goats. Furthermore, it was located outside the village area which made it more perfect for their plans. And they, being farmers, had settled in perfectly. The land was divided into four parts; two large parts and two smaller parts. The two large parts were for farming the millets and the rearing of goats respectively. One of the two smaller parts was designated as the practice area for martial and mystical arts. The second smaller part with the serene dark-water pond was set aside as the meditation area.

They had thought they couldn't be more fortunate, until Zhang Li Qiang made the remarkable discovery of the cultivation chamber while creating an underground storage in the building. The cultivation chamber which had turned out to be a heavenly blessing to them at a grevious time.


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