There was still a large chunk of introduction in the latter bits of the first part, so Xiao Chen just skimmed through and went straight to the second part of the jade strip: the cultivation part of the Paradise Secret Canon.
The second part was divided into five segments. The first segment was about the Heavenly Eye.
“Open the Heavenly Eye, seek the dragons, and determine the veins. Completely understand the heavenly mysteries…”
The Yuwen Clan’s Dragon Seeking Art had the Heavenly Eye as its foundation. Without cultivating a Heavenly Eye, seeking the dragons and determining the veins would be difficult.
“Profound Hands, forged to snatch the heavenly works…”
The second segment was snatching the heavenly works. After cultivating the Heavenly Eye, one could not truly seek the dragons and determine the veins yet. Doing so required the Yuwen Clan’s special Secret Treasures for searching for the dragons.
The Yuwen Clan had a total of three dragon-seeking Secret Treasures: the Dragon Subduing Platform, the Dragon Revealing Mirror, and the Dragon Fixing Needle.
This segment introduced these three dragon-seeking Secret Treasures in detail, including how to refine them, the materials required, and the important points to note.
“The boundless Dao undergoes many changes. The heavens are unpredictable. However, they are measurable, imaginable, thinkable…”
The third segment was about the many changes of the heavenly mysteries. This segment was the most confusing and the most important. It introduced various geography, geomancy, astrology, and many other concepts in great detail, at least ten thousand of them.
This segment discussed complicated geographies and how to deal with them. Ordinary people would not be able to understand this. Even if one understood, one might not be able to immerse themselves in it.
“With the strategy in one’s heart, capturing a dragon by raising the hand…”
The fourth segment was about confinement. It mainly spoke about how to trap a Spirit Vein, using the Dragon Locating Compass to set up all sorts of formations to trap various types of Spirit Veins. It included a total of three thousand formations of various sizes.
“Fighting with men, fighting with heaven, taking boundless joy…”
The fifth segment was about trapping the dragon and rising to heaven. The contents startled Xiao Chen. A Great Heavenly Master that reached a certain level could surpass the confines of the world.
One would be able to fight with the heavens, and with the strength of humans, create dragons and nourish Spirit Veins.
Spirit Veins were nourished by nature, occurring in cycles. However, the Yuwen Clan actually thought of creating Spirit Veins, contending against heaven.
No wonder the Yuwen Clan’s line of inheritance ended. How could fighting against heaven have any good ending?
The third part of the jade strip was blank. There was nothing at all, which was really suspicious.
Xiao Chen guessed that it was some kind of smokescreen. Without cultivating the Paradise Secret Canon to a certain level, he would not be able to view its contents.
He withdrew his Spiritual Sense from the jade strip and revealed a complicated expression. The Dragon Seeking Art was not something that could be learned in one day.
His previous thoughts had been too simple. He had celebrated too soon.
“No matter what, I have to learn this Paradise Secret Canon!”
His voice quivered as he gripped the jade strip tightly with his right hand. The look in his eyes was incredibly determined.
Xiao Chen did not like begging others or owing favors.
It was rare that the heavens gave him a chance forestalling the need to go and trouble the Supreme Sky Emperor or the Thunder Sovereign. No matter what, he would not give up.
No matter how difficult it was, Xiao Chen would not give up.
The secret technique of the Paradise Secret Canon actually consisted of the four segments. The fifth segment was just a supplement, equal to a forbidden art, which gave one goosebumps when they read it.
What kind of existence could dare to say that he took boundless joy in contesting against the heavens?
Although the path of a cultivator was heaven-defying, equal to fighting against the heavens, cultivators still feared and respected the heavens, taking careful steps and moving cautiously. No one would dare to say such disgraceful words.
Xiao Chen felt curious about the Paradise Secret Canon. He really wanted to know what sort of person the Yuwen Clan’s ancestor was.
He definitely needed to go to the Black Sea when he had a chance. He had to go and find Ba Tu and see that body again.
After Xiao Chen calmed himself down, he started to pore over how to cultivate the Heavenly Eye.
He needed to take things step by step. Even if he was in a rush, he could not skip any steps. He still clearly understood this principle.
The Heavenly Eye was extremely mysterious. The moment it opened, it could see a brand-new world. When cultivated to a high level, it could actually see through and thoroughly understand the heavenly mysteries.
There were many levels to the Heavenly Eye. The Geomasters of the Yuwen Clan had been known as Great Heavenly Masters mostly due to the existence of the Heavenly Eye.
Generally speaking, the level of the Heavenly Eye determined the capability of a Great Heavenly Master to find and capture Spirit Veins.
Otherwise, no matter how many strategies one possessed, one would not be able to do anything when facing a high-ranked Spirit Vein.
Xiao Chen studied the method for cultivating the Heavenly Eye until he was very familiar with it. After he mastered it via a comprehensive study of related areas, he decided to start opening his Heavenly Eye.
The process of opening the Heavenly Eye was not complicated, but it was tedious. It required the application of a special eyedrop to the eyes every day during sunrise. Then, he needed to look into the distance and absorb the purple clouds.
[TL Notes: The Chinese for purple clouds (紫气) could be translated as purple Qi as well. But rather than energy, this is actually an auspicious portent in astrology, so I went with clouds instead of Qi.]
After persisting for half a month, he would circulate his energy and open more than a thousand tiny meridians in the eyes. Then, he could formally open the Heavenly Eye, creating a vertical eye on the forehead.
Naturally, Xiao Chen did not have the eyedrops. However, there were ingredients and refining methods listed in the jade strip. After studying them for a while, he did not find them overly problematic. It was just that the ingredients were rather special.
He visited the nearby islands listed in the sea chart and successfully obtained the ingredients he needed. After familiarizing himself with the method a few times, he succeeded in refining the eyedrops.
However, when applying the eyedrops to both eyes every day, there was an indescribable, piercing pain and soreness. It felt like countless tiny worms digging into the eyes, causing great suffering.
This reaction was exactly as described in the jade strip, so it was not unexpected. Despite the pain, Xiao Chen did not stop, relying on sheer determination to endure this inhumane torture.
Ao Jiao felt pangs in her heart as she watched this. At first, Little Yellow Feather felt curious, wanting to give it a try. In the end, after trying once, it cried painfully for an entire day.
Since then, a respectful look appeared in Little Yellow Feather’s eyes when it looked at Xiao Chen. The mischievous attitude it had became much more withdrawn.
At the same time, Little Yellow Feather would accompany Xiao Chen when he sat at the bow of the warship to wait for the sun to rise.
Initially, Xiao Chen did not see any purple clouds. After persisting for many days with the specially made eyedrops, he finally saw the so-called purple clouds.
That was a vast and surging scene, hazy with purple clouds filling the sky. This sight truly allowed one to feel the uplifting and ascending Luck of this world.
After persisting for half a month, Xiao Chen reached the final steps of opening the Heavenly Eye, opening the thousands of tiny meridians that connected the eyes to the forehead.
He carefully took this final step. Then, a slit appeared on his forehead. A vertical eye opened, giving off a strange purple light. Suddenly, the world before him changed.
The vast sea actually turned transparent to Xiao Chen. The geography of the sea bottom, the swimming fishes and prawns, the Spirit Beasts, he saw them all very clearly.
The air was no longer empty. Instead, it was a colorful combination of various gases. Aside from the Spiritual Energy, there were still many gaseous substances.
Xiao Chen could clearly see the flow of the wind, the movement of the clouds, and the rapid pulsation of the entire world.
He felt intense pain, so he quickly closed his eyes, and the vertical eye closed as well, leaving only a faint bloody mark.
Xiao Chen wiped away the blood with joy on his face. When opening the Heavenly Eye, there would definitely be blood. He knew he had really succeeded.
Following this, he just needed to keep cultivating according to the Paradise Secret Canon. The level of the Heavenly Eye would continuously improve. This was just the beginning.
“How is it? Did you succeed?” Ao Jiao asked after she rushed forward with Little Yellow Feather.
Xiao Chen nodded, and Ao Jiao immediately beamed with extreme joy, delighted for him.
“However, this is just the first step. I still have to refine the dragon-seeking Secret Treasures, master the changing heavenly mysteries, and familiarize myself with a thousand types of geography.”
Ao Jiao smiled and said, “There is no rush.”
As long as there was hope, it was fine. As long as Xiao Chen learned this Paradise Secret Canon, there was a great possibility of him advancing to Martial Emperor in five years.
The Dragon Seeking Arts were always clan secret techniques that were passed down only to the males and not the females. Furthermore, they were passed down only within the Geomaster families. No matter how strong a faction was, even an Immortal Holy Land, they would not be able to find any Dragon Seeking Arts.
Furthermore, Xiao Chen’s Paradise Secret Canon was much better than most of the current Dragon Seeking Arts.
Great Heavenly Master. This was a title that existed only in the Ancient Era.
Following this, Xiao Chen got Ao Jiao to dock the warship at an island so he could buy some materials and start refining the one of the dragon-seeking Secret Treasures, the Dragon Fixing Needle.
The Dragon Fixing Needle was a consumable item, the Secret Treasure that Great Heavenly Masters used the most. So, Xiao Chen needed to prepare a large number of them.
As for the Dragon Subduing Platform and the Dragon Revealing Mirror, they were more problematic to refine.
Furthermore, one could not skimp on the materials. Xiao Chen would not be able to find good materials at an island he just happened to stop at. He would have to wait until he reached a large-scale auction.
Hence, he did not intend to refine those two items. In any case, with the Dragon Fixing Needle, he could deal with most Spirit Veins.
Only Holy Spirit Veins and above required the Dragon Revealing Mirror. As for the Dragon Subduing Platform, it was used to deal with certain ancient mutated Spirit Veins.
Three days later, the first Dragon Fixing Needle came out of the Dragon Phoenix Cauldron. It was a palm-length black needle with an extremely sharp point, flickering with a cold light.
The Dragon Fixing Needle did not require much divine material. However, there were many types—more than a hundred. Furthermore, each type had a very specific formula for the materials.
With just a little more or a little less, the Dragon Fixing Needle would fail at fixing down a Spirit Vein. This was a Secret Treasure unique to the Yuwen Clan.
The introduction to snatching heavenly works mentioned that one could obtain a higher-grade Dragon Fixing Needle. It required a more complicated refinement that produced a golden needle with better effects.
However, this was only for situations that one could not handle with black Dragon Fixing Needles; one would normally require just black Dragon Fixing Needles.
Xiao Chen tried a few times, but the success rate of refining golden Dragon Fixing Needles was simply too low. After producing a hundred needles, he stopped.
Then, he frantically refined black Dragon Fixing Needles, stopping only after producing ten thousand, enough to last him a long time.
He devoted the remaining days to the most complicated part of the Paradise Secret Canon, the changing heavenly mysteries.
With regard to studying geography, astrology, and geomancy, he was starting from zero, so he needed to spend copious amounts of time on learning.
On this particular day, the warship arrived at the Northern Sea. Xiao Chen came out of the ship’s hold for a rare breather. He looked at the calm sea, and a thought struck him. Then, he opened his Heavenly Eye and observed his surroundings.
He wanted to test himself in a practical setting, to see if his recent bitter cultivation was effective or not.
The seawater turned transparent, and the geography of the sea bottom became clear.
Just learning was useless. If Xiao Chen could not apply what he learned, then even if he had the contents of the third segment memorized like the back of his hand, it would be useless.
As he looked at the underwater terrain and geography, he thought back to what he memorized over the past few days, the information about the various changes of heavenly mysteries. Then, he quickly made a judgment.
“That is not right. That is an impoverished land. The dragon’s mouth is not locked, and energy does not gather. It flows formlessly with the water.
“That is not right, either. The surroundings are not correct. The mountains do not trap, and the water does not circle, leaking it all to the sky. That cannot be a Spirit Vein.”
As Xiao Chen traveled on the warship, he crossed off many locations. Suddenly, he got Ao Jiao to stop before squinting at a certain piece of terrain at the sea bottom.
That was a heavily guarded underwater leyline. There were endless mountain ranges in the south, three small mounds in the north correlating well with one another, and two protective mountain rings to the east and west.
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