In Qingyun Mountain Range, the mountains were steep and the rocks were odd-shaped.
The misty clouds spread, making it look like an ethereal realm.
Two figures disrupted the tranquility of the mountain near its base.
The two of them moved, one after another.
The former was in his early forties. Clad in a green Daoist robe, he walked through the mountains with light footsteps, not tainted by any of the dust at all.
The latter was in his early twenties and had a neat and refined appearance. Donning a plain white outfit, he walked through the mountains, giving off a scholarly vibe. The only flaw was that his cloth shoes were stained by mud and seemed out of place.
Perhaps because it rained a few days ago, the mud between the mountains was wet and slippery.
Ye Ping walked between the mountains.
Various scenes appeared in his mind.
Ye Ping felt that he was very unlucky.
Three years ago, he was just an ordinary office worker who was wasting his life away in the 996 Blessing System on Earth.
However, an unexpected accident brought him to an ancient-like world.
This world did not belong to any of the Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming, or Qing Dynasties.
Instead, it claimed to be known as the Immortal Martial Era.
He was in a small nation known as the Jin Nation.
Regardless of whether it was the Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming, or Qing Dynasty, he wouldn't lead too miserable of a life since he had the advantage of being a transmigrator. At the thought of the fact that each man could have several wives during the ancient times, he suddenly felt much less uncomfortable.
As the saying goes, education is above all and the way to go. Regardless of the era, receiving education was definitely the most direct way to have a promising future and allow one to make a name for themselves. For the sake of a better life, Ye Ping hopped onto the bandwagon of becoming a scholar.
Perhaps, other transmigrators might detest studying but Ye Ping was different from them. He enjoyed reading and studying because there was a law in Jin Nation where all scholars could enjoy ten years of compulsory education. In other words, he was happy about receiving free education.
He could study and sit for examinations to bring himself fame without having to pay any money at all. How could Ye Ping not be pleased about that?
Hence, during the past three years after he transmigrated, Ye Ping had been attentively studying books written by Sages, memorizing scriptures and sutras, and bearing in mind the famous sayings of the Saints. Besides, with his identity as a literature student, Ye Ping would be able to come up with superb lines about the world on his own from time to time.
One of his lines urged one to go with the flow and that life was just a dream. There was also another one about bravado.
Of course, those famous lines had been edited. After all, there were no borders in this world and those lines had to be modified.
However, Ye Ping managed to gain some fame in Jin Nation based on those classic lines.
However, something unexpected cropped up when Ye Ping was full of confidence and was ready to take the imperial examinations.
When he was rushing to the examination in the capital, he saw someone shuttling through the sky while flying on an immortal sword, appearing suave and carefree.
He suddenly had an epiphany.
'So this is a world of immortal cultivation.'
Ye Ping felt anguished immediately after realizing that.
He had been studying hard for three years.
He had suffered plenty of hardships in those three years.
He initially thought that it was a world of scholars where everyone practiced martial arts and studied.
He never expected it to be a world of immortal cultivation.
'Studying in an immortal world?'
'This is absurd.'
Although Ye Ping did not have huge ambitions, he knew the difference between immortal cultivation and education.
Even if one were to worship the Monkey King, they would probably only be an insignificant nobody in the eyes of immortal cultivators.
Even the king of a nation would have to be respectful towards an immortal cultivator, right?
Hence, after learning that it was a world of immortal cultivation, Ye Ping abandoned his scholarly dreams and decided to pursue the illusory Immortal Dao.
He initially thought that the process would be very long.
However, he did not expect there to be an abundance of immortal cultivators in this world, and they were not rare at all, unlike what he thought.
In less than a month's time, Ye Ping had participated in four or five Grand Immortal Ascension Meets.
In this world of immortal cultivation, sects were rampant and they were all very diligent. They would hold annual Grand Immortal Ascension Meets and those who had spiritual roots would be allowed to join the immortal sect.
Ye Ping, who had attended more than 50 Grand Immortal Ascension Meets so far, realized that he had no spiritual roots only after being blacklisted by the major sects in Qingzhou region.
He didn't have a rare constitution but rather, he had the worst of the worst.
Those who had his constitution would usually be called good-for-nothings.
However, after finding out that he had the worst constitution, Ye Ping did not feel in the least bit miserable. Instead, he was delighted.
'Isn't this the classic opening of an underdog's story?'
'The worse the protagonist is in the beginning, the more outstanding his achievements would be in the future.'
Hence, Ye Ping did not feel dejected at all. On the contrary, he wanted to continue to participate in the major Grand Immortal Ascension Meets. He believed that as long as he was accepted by an immortal sect and given a fair chance, he would be able to make brilliant accomplishments.
However, someone with no spiritual root was akin to a good-for-nothing in the eyes of the members of the major sects. No sect would be willing to accept a cultivator with no spiritual root.
After diligently putting in continuous effort and hard work, he finally met a benefactor.
That was the middle-aged man in front of him.
He was Daoist Tai Hua, the eighteenth-generation Sect Leader of the Qingyun Dao Sect.
He spotted Ye Ping among the crowd and was willing to take him in as a disciple to impart some immortal techniques to him.
The only requirement was that he had to be put through an internship. During the internship, he would not be given any salary.
In other words, he would not be paid.
That requirement was not considered much to Ye Ping. After all, he did not care about such material possessions.
His focus was on cultivation.
As long as he could cultivate, he would not have to worry about lacking money in the future.
At the thought of this, Ye Ping couldn't help but be nervous.
Amidst the mountains, clouds drifted past, making it look like an immortal realm. The gentle breeze blew past, and Ye Ping felt like his soul had been cleansed. He felt nervous but he also looked forward to it. Most importantly, he was in awe.
In Ye Ping's opinion, immortals had always been majestic.
He imagined himself becoming an immortal cultivator and roaming through the nine states with Sword Kinesis Flight, his white robe fluttering. Wouldn't that be beautiful?
'Immortals will enjoy longevity.'
While Ye Ping was letting his imagination run wild, the 18th-generation Sect Leader of the Qingyun Dao Sect, Daoist Tai Hua, was beaming with joy.
This time, he had gone down the mountain to handle some trivial matters.
However, he did not expect to take a new disciple under his wing.
Most importantly, that disciple was willing to accept a zero-salary internship.
It was a double blessing.
The pressure of competition in the sects in Qingzhou region had been too stiff lately and all the sects were vying for disciples, causing the salaries to rise.
However, the talented disciples had all been snatched up by the bigger sects while the majority of those who were not exactly talented but at least had some aptitude had also been snatched away. Hence, the remaining ones were all terrible.
Even then, the salary rates had been increasing annually because of the competition between the sects.
Of course, that was also because many knew that those who did not have any spiritual roots would only end up becoming handymen when they joined immortal sects. If they wanted to learn something, they might as well join a martial arts academy to strengthen their bodies. At the very least, they would have somewhat of a future.
Immortal cultivation would not necessarily allow one to become stronger.
If mastering the basic techniques would allow one to become an immortal, everyone would be experts.
However, that was also the reason that some sects of the lower tiers would not get a single disciple in a few years, let alone one who was willing to join for free.
Hence, Daoist Tai Hua was in good spirits.
However, the only thing that worried Daoist Tai Hua was the fact that his disciples might not seem like experts.
He didn't want his new disciple to leave shortly after joining.
That would be troublesome.
However, Daoist Tai Hua did not feel guilty because no one else would be willing to take Ye Ping in for immortal cultivation anyway. Since both parties were willing, there was nothing for him to be guilty about. Although his immortal sect was poor, the problem was that the better sects would not accept Ye Ping.
The only thing he was guilty about was not paying Ye Ping a salary. However, Daoist Tai Hua would note it down and make it up to him after the sect rose and developed.
While Daoist Tai Hua was pondering over it slowly, the two figures had arrived at the entrance of Qingyun Dao Sect.