The two of them started walking towards the academy. Yao Ting suddenly remembered her question earlier: "Dao Brother, which class are you going to?"
"Study Room." Li Qiye nonchalantly responded.
"Study Room?" She was surprised to hear this unexpected answer.
The academy indeed had five sections with Study Room as the fifth.
However, people only really talked about Mortal School, Emperor Mansion, Sacred Institution, and Hundred Halls. Though Mortal Hall rarely recruited students, it was still a hot topic.
On the contrary, no one talked about Study Room because even if they were chosen, they wouldn't want to participate in this particular class.
It was indeed a part of the academy and had teachers teaching the dao and merit laws. Nevertheless, the students here usually traveled the world and learned about history.
For cultivators, the main goal in joining the academy was to learn the dao in order to shoulder the Heaven's Will one day. Thus, sightseeing and history weren't on their agenda. They wanted to learn how to fly and become stronger, not to become bookworms.
This resulted in a low participation rate for this classroom, albeit not as low as Mortal School. For example, there were only a few students there this semester.
Yao Ting glanced at Li Qiye again. She wasn't involved with Study Room but she was aware of the names of the students there. Li Qiye was not one of them.
"Well…" She didn't quite know how to ask.
He decided to tease her after seeing her appearance: "I only got here just now."
"Oh, but this semester doesn't take in new students." She slightly frowned, worrying about him: "If you want to join Study Room, I'm afraid it won't be possible. You will have to wait till the next semester."
Li Qiye leisurely said: "I'm here already, might as well go take a look. Nothing is certain in this world, perhaps I'll be lucky and get accepted this time anyway."
"Maybe." She pondered for a bit and agreed due to her positive impression of him: "Dao Brother, Study Room is closest to the southern gate, so you should that way. Coincidentally enough, the seniors from Hundred Halls are in charge over there and I know them. Let me take you."
Having said that, she led the way for him.
He only wanted to tease her but didn't expect her to be so enthusiastic. He smiled faintly and saw the shadow of an old acquaintance in her.
It would be more accurate to call the academy a country due to its massive size. The land here spanned for more than a million miles.
Even though the two of them were flying at a fast speed, it still took nearly half a day to reach the southern entrance.
A conversation sparked again when Yao Ting thought about something that has been haunting her: "Dao Brother, may I ask you something?"
"Go for it." He said flatly.
She picked out her words carefully: "You weren't just passing through when you came to Yao last time, right? Of course, excuse me if I am wrong."
"You're right, I was taking a look there." He had no intention of hiding.
She pondered a bit before asking: "Because of the shrine in our village?"
In fact, she was quite certain of this already.
He gently nodded: "Indeed, I haven't seen it in a long time and it was on the way."
"What's inside?" She blurted out without hesitation this time.
She was truly curious about the shrine but asking the elders in the village, no one had a clue about its origin and how it was built. The oldest grandpa said that it has been there before his parents' generation. Perhaps it was already there when the village came about.
Everyone in the village has grown used to the existence of this inconspicuous shrine, including Yao Ting during her childhood.
This was no longer the case. She tried many different methods and exerted all strength only to fail in opening the ordinary wooden door.
She didn't dare to claim to be a peerless master but she was still a talent at the academy. In terms of physical strength, she could move a mountain but this wasn't enough.
Her failure told her that the shrine wasn't as simple as it seems. There must be a secret hidden inside.
Thus, she thought about Li Qiye but he had already left. How was she going to find him in the ocean of people? Thus, she was naturally excited to see him again and couldn't resist asking about it.
He looked at her and she stared back with eyes full of hope and anticipation. He gently sighed inside since she had seen this pair of eyes before with the same emotions flashing within.
"Of course, please excuse my lack of propriety if you do not wish to speak, Dao Brother. Just pretend that I didn't say anything." His silence made her think that he didn't wish to disclose the secret so she quickly added.
He answered: "It's not that I don't want to divulge the information, but this requires fate. Without it, even if you gain the knowledge, you won't be able to do anything. It will only be a nail in your mind, impossible to be taken out - an inner demon in your dao heart."
She was not expecting this response.
"If you truly want to know, then use your heart to feel and listen. Then you will know how to open it." Li Qiye pointed at his heart and said.
"My heart?" She became astonished once more.
Li Qiye nodded and said softly: "But remember, whenever you open a new door, another one closes. There is no right and wrong here, only your own choice that will decide your path."
"Closing another door?" She ruminated and murmured about the profound statement.
He gently sighed out loud this time. If it was in the past, he wouldn't have told her since this was the decision of her ancestors to remove them from fighting and killing. But now, this was no longer the case. The golden age was nearing the end so the future was full of perils. He decided to give her a choice in order to be the master of her own destiny. This was a possible way out for the village as well. They needed to rely on themselves now.
The two reached the southern gate before they knew it due to the engaging conversation.
There were only five-or-so students there responsible for greeting the returning students. The place was desolate because the closest section was Study Room which had few students.
The students here became charged after seeing these two. Of course, their flashing eyes were on all Yao Ting.
After all, she was still quite pretty though not on the same level as Mei Suyao.
"Sister Ting, you're back so soon? Your village is so far away so I thought it would be another few days." The oldest and most handsome among them stepped forward. Surely the guy had a crush on Yao Ting, evident by his enthusiasm.
"The village was fine so I came back earlier." She was a friendly girl so she spoke without a hint of arrogance.
"I actually wanted to come and pick you up from your village but Teacher arranged for me to be at the reception. It's really too bad." The youth spoke again.
"Thank you, Senior." She nodded and introduced: "This is Dao Brother Li. He's coming to Study Room and we traveled together. And this is an exceptional talent from Hundred Halls, Senior Yan Chensheng."
Chensheng and the other youths here finally noticed Li Qiye. A bit ago, they were fixated on Yaoting and someone as normal as Li Qiye wouldn't earn a second glance from them.
He was a bit unhappy to hear that Yao Ting was traveling another man since he had a crush on her. This was a natural reaction.
But he was worrying for no reason. She felt a closeness to Li Qiye hence the introduction.
"You are a student of Study Room?" Chensheng's tone was completely different towards Li Qiye, especially after seeing his appearance.
After all, he was a genius in Hundred Halls while someone like Li Qiye posed no threat to him. The guy was clearly not worthy to be his opponent.