A little over three years ago at the Myriad Nascent Dao Pagoda.
Amongst the gathered young elites of the Myriad Yore Continent, there was a woman sitting alone while tending to her wounds. Just earlier, she had challenged the Pagoda and survived, receiving recognition and an emblem that allowed her to enter the Myriad Monarch Sect as a Null Disciple. While this was the equivalent of an honorary disciple or a servant, the lowest ranked existence in any sect hierarchy, it was a ticket to a grander sky.
Currently, everyone was making their decisions on whether to challenge the pagoda or seek their own path elsewhere, likely trying to find a way to return home. They all willingly chose this, but quite a few regretted it. This was especially so for the subsequent failure to survive the trial or merely obtained a Null Disciple Emblem.
They gritted their teeth, as she once did, and weren ’t willing to reconcile with their insufficient talent. In the Myriad Yore Continent, they were treated with the utmost respect, never wanted for food, had profound strength amongst their peers, but now they were forced to face that they were ants who lacked skill and talent.
There were a few who threw the emblems away, and dragged their injured bodies away with others in tow, seeking to settle their own footholds elsewhere. They were naturally proud existences, and becoming a servant was above their belief of dignity, regardless if it belonged to a hegemonic force. Those that remained earned and kept the qualifications as a Null Disciple or qualified to be a Nascent Dust Disciple.
Many were ignorant to the utter scope of difficulty of cultivation after being spoon fed resources, methods, teachings, exceptional environmental factors, and bestowed riches.
However, Wen Mengna was not like them. A few of those leaving for their own paths had come and invited her to take another path with them, appreciating her talent and will, but she refused them all without exception. Many of those who offered were men, and she saw the blazing glint in their eyes of lust and desire. While it wasn ’t openly displayed, her fate with them would be relegated to a woman rather than a cultivator.
She was a cultivator first.
While she also had their background, receiving the best resources and environmental factors of the Myriad Yore Continent, she was more realistic in her thinking and felt that starting off lowly was better than venturing into the unknown abyss that was fraught with dangers.
After her wounds completely healed, she once more regained her exceptional beauty and the more than a hundred young elites had been reduced to merely twenty-seven. The rest had either perished or left before or after taking the trial.
She took out a small mirror from her storage ring, slightly shocked that she could still connect to it from millions of miles away. Observing the reflection, she saw a young woman that had full, oval-shaped pink lips, light brown-hair styled in a blonde layered crop with highlights, an impeccable skin clarity, and bright complexion. Her beauty befitted her status as a princess as her eyes contained an innate nobility and her aura contained pride that seeped into her bones.
However, in her heart, she understood the consequences of such looks. She stood up beneath the curious gazes of others and retreated a fair distance away. After sweeping her spiritual sense around, she established a concealment spell that shrouded her in spiritual mist. With a gentle wave of her hand, she brought out a pair of scissors and cut her hair.
Snip! Snip! Snip!
Her gorgeous brown hair was shortened until it became a masculine pixie cut. With bandages, she wrapped them around her ample breasts, legs, and buttocks. Particularly, she tightly wrapped them around her butt, causing it to lose its plump form and become flat. Her overall appearance was severely reduced in quality from this tactic, allowing her to be more or less below average in feminine physique.
After settling this, she looked at her mirror once more. However, she bit her lips to the point blood started to seep out of the corners of her mouth. She grabbed the pair of scissors with both hands and brought it to the right edge of her forehead. Her hand trembled slightly but abruptly, it became firm and her eyes reflected unfathomable determination.
’I have to do this. I must do this! ’
She cut diagonally across her face, splitting a portion of her lips and causing crimson blood to flow. With her qi, she hurriedly stopped the bleeding and started to make surface repairs, leaving a ghastly scar on her face. She looked particularly unappealing, even horrific as well, but her soft skin and complexion was quite difficult to cover-up. So she had to use make-up to lightly dampen the luster of her skin.
To disfigure herself was a challenge that took her everything, maiming the looks she once adorned with complete pride. Even the pain of the horrific gash was little compared to her losing her identity as a gorgeous member of a female species, yet she withstood it all quietly within her heart.
After once more seeing herself in the mirror, she no longer recognized herself and while she was still a beautiful woman, this would not be the first assumption others would make. With a heavy sigh, she returned back to the group and cloaked herself with a hooded robe. The others gave her even more curious glances after her return, but remained silent.
Wen Mingna swept her eyes over the remaining elites and saw over a dozen beautiful females amongst them, this included Long Chen ’s group of girls. However, she didn ’t engage with any of them. In fact, it was best if she was the only one to take precautionary actions so that a pattern couldn ’t be spotted and bright about investigative eyes. Instead, she quietly cultivated in this essence rich environment as she awaited the arrival of the mentioned transportation to the sect.
After a month, she felt a notable increase in her cultivation base, approaching the Seventh Stage of the Qi Condensation Realm, the Sublime Qi Phase. It was as if she had absorbed three full essence stones in this month-long period. At this pace, a decade would be enough for her to reach the Seventh Stage. This excited her. While she had numerous essence stones in her possession, the natural ambient essence was several times easier to absorb than the concentrated state in essence stones.
From afar, the shadow of an aerial beast with the features resembling a hawk yet had a wingspan that exceeded eighty meters appeared. It soared through the skies accompanied by a small figure on its back.
The youths looked at this new arrival and were shocked at the fierce aura of the beast. When it batted its large wings and landed, gusts of wind caused them to lose their footing and some fell directly on their asses. Wen Mingna hurriedly braced herself, those eyes of her were bright as she focused on the figure riding the hawk.
”All those who have Null Disciple and Nascent Dust Emblems, step forward now. ” An aged, male voice echoed as an elderly looking man with mutton chops and a bald head appeared. ”My name ’s Dai Qui, I ’ll be taking you all to the Myriad Monarch Sect. ”
As he spoke, his lazy gaze swept the youths. He had a multicolored attire similar to Xiang Ling and embroidered on it was the titled rank of Mortal Captain. His cultivation base was merely at the First Stage of the Astral Core Realm, but he was still one of the five million that existed in the starfield, so he was an exceptional expert regardless of his age or appearance.
He didn ’t release a hint of his aura, so no one here could properly determine his strength. They all looked to each other, and Long Chen was the first to step forward alongside his group. When Dai Qui saw them, his eyes brightened slightly. However, it soon dimmed as he recalled Xiang Ling ’s warning before he took off. These girls and this man were not to be touched as they had some connection with her disciple.
He could see that these women had a relationship with this young man, and this young man seemed to have the aura of two Natal Souls within him. He pouted his lips slightly and shook his head slightly, feeling as if it was a pity. The hawk lowered itself and allowed these youths to climb atop its back.
Wen Mingna similarly brandished her emblem and followed along. Dai Qui glanced at her momentarily and sighed inwardly. While she kept her face concealed beneath the shadow of a hood, he could clearly see her features. ’Poor girl. ’Was his only thought paid to Wen Mingna before he looked elsewhere.
There was a particular girl, a young princess of a country, that was at the Sixth Stage of the Qi Condensation and she held similar status, beauty, and exquisite bodily assets as Wen Mingna. Her eyes were filled with stubborn pride and blazing flames of a yearning to prove herself before an unknown world. When Dai Qui saw her, his eyes flashed and he smiled kindly when she arrived.
Soon, the hawk took off. Wen Mingna stayed in her own isolated corner of the hawk while Dai Qui smilingly familiarized himself with the others like a harmless elder seeking conversation, but his heart held all sorts of ill-intentions. And while he seemed harmless, his eyes were on a particular individual.
Later that year, that proud woman who was a highly doted on princess with praised talent in the Myriad Yore Continent, and another girl within their group was relegated to the 93rd & 94th Concubines of Dai Qui.
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