“So his power is from the sword. Ultimately, it is an external tool, not his own power so there are limits. Even a True Emperor might not be able to knock down a supreme fruit. I don’t think Li Qiye can do it by relying on the sword.” Another nodded in agreement.
All in all, an unknown student from Repentance shouldn’t even be compared to the Everlastings and True Emperors from the four great academies.
“Nonetheless, I think this Li Qiye has a chance.” The lone student supporting Li Qiye still believed that there was more than meet the eyes.
“Listen, there are limits to that sword, regardless of how powerful it is. Repentance Institution hasn’t produced anyone worthwhile after so many years. Have you heard of a single True Emperor from there? It will be the same for this generation. They are descendants of sinners with tainted blood flowing through them, abandoned by the high heaven and cursed by living beings. No talent will come from there.” One student said with disdain.
The lone supporter still maintained his stance, believing that the sword picked a special person as its master.
Of course, Li Qiye didn’t know that he had become a hot topic for debate. His group has delved deeper into the orchard.
Along the way, Du Wenrui patiently explained the various fruits to the young ones - their benefits and special effects. He knew each one like the back of his hand.
Meanwhile, Li Qiye was sitting on top of a branch of a sacred tree, swinging his legs back and forth.
“What does the supreme fruit taste like?” He watched the dean before smiling and asked.
Du Wenrui paused while the students stared at him with curiosity. They naturally wanted to know the answer to the taste of the best sacred fruit in the world.
The supreme fruits were the hardest to obtain, reserved for the best True Emperors and Everlastings.
“Well, I have no idea.” Wenrui smiled awkwardly and shook his head: “I have never eaten one, obviously. If I ever get the chance later on, I will let you know.”
The group became disappointed after hearing this. However, they also realized how rude they were being. Their dean wasn’t a True Emperor so how could he pick and eat one to know the taste?
Li Qiye laughed in response while Du Wenrui remained normal and ignored the guy.
“Dean, we can’t pick any fruit here but I also feel that it’s getting harder to climb up these trees too.” One student asked.
The rest nodded right away. They thought that they were the only ones having this problem until now.
“The trees themselves are normal but as we go deeper, the limitations have increased.” Wenrui said.
“What is it?” One student inquired.
“Perhaps a way for the progenitor to test his posterity. This is a suppression stemming from the light that gradually increases. That’s why Fellow Student Li is here as a test so that the director will believe that he doesn’t have darkness in his heart. Darkness shouldn’t be able to hide in the presence of the light.” Wenrui smiled.
“Oh, I see.” The group nodded after learning this.
“Do all you old men embellish your progenitor to this level?” Li Qiye refused and steered the conversation somewhere else: “No need to hide those things since they’ll find out after becoming strong enough.”
“Well, our explanation is logical and reasonable.” Wenrui let out a hollow laugh.
The youths became curious again and stared at Li Qiye. They didn’t find anything wrong with Wenrui’s explanation.
“Calling this a suppression or a test is tricking others.” Li Qiye smiled and shook his head: “The most exact explanation is that this is domination, or, to put it more elegantly, conversion. Beneath this land is a boundless ocean of light brimming with energy. The deeper you go, the greater the temptation of the light. Both the natives and outsiders will be affected by this pressure. Thus, what you’re feeling is not a power of suppression but rather, you are instinctively resisting this temptation of the light. The deeper inside, the stronger the temptation, and the more you resist. Thus, you think this is a suppression of the light affinity.”
Du Wenrui sighed after hearing this. Certain secrets could be hidden from normal cultivators and the world. Alas, the real masters on Li Qiye’s level could see through this.
“What’s wrong with the light and accepting it?” Qiushi said: “Its illumination allows everyone to live peacefully.”
“You are born without light or darkness. These two affinities are simply competing with each other. Since you believe in the light, you believe being in it is a good thing. Well, the same applies to those born in the darkness. Nothing is extreme and absolute in this world, no definite good and no definite bad. Let us use specific examples with this sacred mountain. From a positive perspective, if one can protect their mind and has light in their heart, they will be able to leave this place and become a good person, a successful conversion for the light. However, if this person were to fail to maintain their dao heart and enter the deepest area in this land, they will never be able to leave and will die here. Of course, some people try to make it sound better, but in essence, the person will become a puppet of the light. Do you want to become a puppet?” Li Qiye elaborated.
The group didn’t know what to say and exchanged glances.
“They’re still children, no need to tell them this.” Wenrui shook his head.
“And that’s where your education is wrong.” Li Qiye said: “They need to face what the light really is. It is not supreme and superior to anything else, just like how a merchant is not inferior to anyone else. If they had known this, they wouldn’t be feeling insecure about being from Repentance and blindly worship the light. This is an abnormal state of mind, I don’t care whether it stems from good intention or carelessness but the result is the same. They will live under this shadow for the rest of their lives - a shadow not created by the darkness but because of the illumination of the light!” 
Du Wenrui couldn’t refute because this was indeed the truth. Repentance City had no sinners but even if their ancestors had done something wrong, their descendants shouldn’t be punished and stigmatized.
This stigma remained for millions of years, always torturing the people of this city. They lived a borrowed life beneath the shadow of the light.
Alas, without a comparative point like Repentance, how could one show the superiority and greatness of the light in the other locations?
Because of this, the descendants there were doomed from the start. Their progenitor might have done this inadvertently or used it as a warning, or he might have had some other intentions…
Regardless of the reason, the people in Repentance have done nothing wrong. The real sinners here were Desolate Saint and the omnipresent light in the system!
Du Wenrui understood the implications and negative effects but he couldn’t change it. The only way was to overthrow the system and eliminate the illuminating light.
First, let’s put aside his abilities to do so in the first place, this deed would turn him into a heinous sinner.
“How come we haven’t heard of these light puppets before?” The students’ dao heart has been affected by Li Qiye’s words. Nevertheless, they didn’t fully believe him.
“Because you haven’t gotten the chance. Come to Beast Garden and you’ll see the truth.” Li Qiye smiled.
1. Historical context: merchants were looked down upon in ancient China, below farmers and such. Confucianism viewed merchants as parasites who don’t create anything to benefit society, only exchanging pre-existing goods for personal profits.
The students nearby agreed with his analysis.