Chapter 62

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written by kakashi
edited by Panda

When Father Immortal was dying, the Heavens wept for days and the Earth shook in sorrow. The passing of an Old one was the end of an era, an utterly devastating event. But is also was a time of reckoning. The frightening reminder that even their lives would eventually end, made many inhabitants of the immortal realms reconsider their ways and led, at least temporarily, to an upsurge in the eight virtues: filial piety, sibling harmony, dedication, trustworthiness, propriety, sacrifice, honor, and a sense of shame.

At his father's deathbed, Mo Yuan felt numb more than anything else. As Fuxi's son, he had worked relentlessly at becoming a paragon of virtue; he did not need to correct his ways like so many others. In his 95'000 years of existence, he had never once brought his parents shame. He was without fault, without desires, without untoward emotions. If this was a time of reckoning, it was to confirm that Mo Yuan had not wasted his immortal life with trifling matters.

When his tired father gave him the Celestial fetus in form of the Golden Lotus and implored him to keep his brother safe at all cost, Mo Yuan felt immensely grateful to be entrusted with such an important task. In that last moment, presented with his father's guilt, he felt his parent's love more clearly than ever before. His heart swelled: he was ready for what was inevitably coming.

After saying "this is my only wish," his father closed his eyes with a sigh and leaned back on his cushions to wait for the end. Mo Yuan bowed his head in reverence, saying his farewells in his heart. All fell quiet. Mo Yuan remained kneeling and bowing, listening to his father's quiet breathing.

"Mo Yuan," Father Immortal suddenly whispered, "my son."

Mo Yuan lifted his head and moved closer.

"Mo Yuan," Fuxi said, "I am leaving you with heavy burdens, but I know you are strong enough. I am glad you never coveted to rule the Heavens. It is not for you."

Mo Yuan bowed again. It was true, and he would say this to everyone without even a trace of envy, Donghua was perfect for this task. In fact, Mo Yuan would be forever grateful he was not the one who had to rule.

"You will be worshipped by all as Taoist Master on the holy mountain of Kunlun, pillar of the sky," his father continued, "all the realms will look to you as an example. Do not falter. Do never waver. Always be virtuous."

His father made a pause during which his breathing turned even fainter. Mo Yuan was suddenly moved to take his father's hand, but he did not dare to.

"You can never be weak," Father Immortal whispered, "as my son, you have to carry the fate of the realms on your shoulders. If you stumble, the realms will as well. In that direction lies calamity."

"I will do what you command, father," Mo Yuan murmured, "I will not disappoint you."

"I do not doubt it," Father Immortal said, "yet, you have a fatal flaw you need to overcome."

A flaw? Mo Yuan looked up in shock.

"You have purged yourself entirely from the seven emotions and the six desires as is expected of you, but you have only succeeded in developing an iron will, without ever finding and removing the seed of your true weakness. If you control emotions forcibly without digging out the root, you control nothing but outgrowth. This is like a flood of water: if you try to dam it without stopping the source or clearing the flow, eventually you will be drowned."

"Father, please teach me the right way," Mo Yuan said, suddenly feeling anxious. Why had his father not spoken up about this before?

"You must...," Father Immortals voice faltered, "you must learn how to feel and desire and still follow the right path."

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