The Elders stayed silent for a while, shifting uncomfortably. It wasn’t that they didn’t have ideas but this matter was too big to make casual remarks. Eventually, one of the Elders that had been standing in the back stepped forward and cupped his fists.
“This matter involves tenths of sects ranking from the lowest tier to even first-tier sects like the Yun Zou Sect. In my opinion, we can’t make a decision that is merely based on just one incident or two. We will need one that will be valid for all cases. A general consensus on what to do for all these imprisoned disciples and for in the case such a matter happens again in the future.”
Another Elder stepped forward and cupped his fists as well, bowing to the Sect Master. “I agree with this. This matter is of great importance to the future of all the sects. One of the things that worries me most is that we only found out because of this letter. We don’t know how long this has been happening and if the scale might be larger than we are currently informed of. Sect Master Fei may correct me if I am wrong but just because only the Chun Feng Sect was mentioned in the letter, we can’t necessarily conclude that other demon-hunting sects weren’t in the know or even practiced similar things.”
Fei Bai Mu nodded. “Correct. We currently have no information on the other sects. We will continue to investigate in that direction but that will take time. More than I am comfortable giving the Chun Feng Sect before we come to a decision.”
The Elders nodded gravely and a third one stepped out. “I feel that there are several parts to this problem that will need to be considered. The general practice of imprisoning all these disciples will certainly need more discussion. But other than that, I think that we also shouldn’t forget about the fact that these disciples were imprisoned — or should I say abducted — without their sects being informed that it would happen or about the reasons behind this.
“Sure, a disciple having demonic blood is indeed a reason to be worried. But this concerns not just their own lives, this also concerns their sects. Even if the demon-hunting sects have to investigate the disciples, they should at least be required to inform the sect the disciple is part of.”
Another Elder chimed in at that. “Yes, informing the corresponding sect should be the bare minimum of what is done. But I don’t think this is enough. We should also think about just what kind of suspicion is enough to investigate a disciple in the first place.
“Demon blood is not always obvious and doesn’t manifest in the same ways for everyone. Especially if it is far back in somebody’s lineage. I think it is impossible for all these cases to be of the same severity. We can’t deal with all of them in the same matter. So if a disciple only has a minuscule amount of this type of blood, should they really be put under suspicion in the first place? Or is that already going too far? I think this is the question that needs the most discussion.”
A few other Elders nodded their agreement while others weren’t that easily convinced.
“Although there might not be much demon blood in their veins, we also know that just a small amount can be enough to change their perception of life completely. We shouldn’t take this less seriously just because their blood is more similar to that of a human. We — and especially the demon-hunting sects that deal with them on a regular basis — have seen what demons are able to do. That is why the demon-hunting sects were established in the first place.
“Rather than saying that these disciples shouldn’t be put under suspicion, I think that it would be a better option to investigate them but have a requirement that not only one sect will investigate. There should at least be two demon-hunting sects working together on each case or maybe it would be even better to have somebody attend the investigation that is not a demon hunter. After all, it is a known fact that these people can be a little … insistent on their views.”
The Elder that had spoken before nodded at that. “I think this suggestion is very good. The case of the Chun Feng Sect shows that they can’t be left to their own devices. I don’t want to say that they aren’t doing a good job. I’m sure that we all owe the demon-hunting sects quite a bit. But there also have to be boundaries. And this time, they clearly overstepped.
“Anyway, even though we can discuss this more ourselves, I think that we should also hear some other voices. How about communicating with the other non-ranked sects? If we are of one opinion, then it will be easier to convince others. Just with us, anything we come up with might be difficult to achieve and the other non-ranked sects might feel ignored if we make any decisions on our own.”
The Sect Master tapped the armrest of her chair and slowly nodded. “That is indeed a valid objection. Very well, then I will first notify the other Sect Masters. Until then, the few of you can think about this matter further. Note down every possible solution and objection you can think of. The better we are prepared for meeting with the other sects, the easier it will be to find a solution together with everyone.”
The Elders obliged and went to ponder the matter on their own while the Sect Master of the Jian Yi Sect reached out to the others. After thinking about it for a moment, she didn’t just notify the other unranked sects so but also invited some of the more powerful families to have a discussion. Anyway, the more people got involved in this, the better. That way, the Chun Feng Sect and maybe even the other demon-hunting sect that had indulged in similar practices wouldn’t be able to worm their way out of this as easily.