Blue butterfly was doing whatever so Mei Chao Bing was left to wonder what he was supposed to do.
Seeing him like this, Tong Chen reached out and patted his arm. “Relax. Currently, you’re awake. That is the prerequisite to actually travel through dreams.”
Mei Chao Bing raised his brows, uncertain what to make of that. “We did just travel in a dream but I was still asleep at that time.”
The black warrior smiled at that. “Well, I wasn’t there, but I’d assume that you traveled back to the location where you were sleeping, right? Then that isn’t true travel. At the very least, it wasn’t for you. It was for her though.” He motioned toward blue butterfly and then shook his head. “When you want to go from one place to another while in a dream, then that dream needs to be had while awake.
“I can’t tell you the specifics behind it but that is how she explained it to me when we tried to do this the first time around. If you are in a normal dream, you can walk around as well, yes, but you can’t actually get to another place. You can only get to where you are currently sleeping. If you are fully conscious though, there is a way for her to take you along. It’s not possible to do on your own but with her, it’s possible.”
Mei Chao Bing nodded, feeling that this somewhat made sense. He had trouble wrapping his mind around it but he could at least understand the principle. “Senior blue butterfly mentioned that you needed to be in a special state of mind to do this. Will I be able to do that right now?”
It seemed unlikely. After all, he had only recently learned about these abilities. Now, he was suddenly supposed to just roll with it and enter the right state of mind to travel around the world in a dream? Even though he was confident in his ability as a cultivator, this was something different.
The black warrior gave a faint hum, not sure what to say. “I can’t guarantee it but I think your chances aren’t bad. When it comes to entering that state of mind, it isn’t too different from cultivation. Just close your eyes and empty your mind. What you want to find is a dreamlike state, a bit like being in that moment between waking and sleeping. It can be difficult to grasp at first but she will pull you in as soon as you get close to it.”
Mei Chao Bing furrowed his brows but still nodded faintly. “I will try.”
He tried to relax and closed his eyes, trying to push away all those miscellaneous thoughts in his head. It wasn’t easy. These days, there was so much going on: The fear of seeing his Master again and losing in a battle with him, worry about Yun Bei Fen’s safety, the anxiety about the future of the Teng Yong Sect and how he might be the one to do them all in … How was he supposed to just let go of these things? But if he didn’t, then he would be getting in the way of solving this mess. He had to do it.
The black warrior kept silent, not even trying himself to enter that state. After a while, he reached out and patted Mei Chao Bing’s arm. “You’re too tense.” He knew that it was difficult. Back then, he had also struggled to get it, as had the other two.
The only reason he believed that Mei Chao Bing would be able to do it today was that he was at the heart of this whole matter. Even though he didn’t know yet what exactly would be happening to all of them in the future, he knew that Mei Chao Bing was someone special. And he was sure that this kind of person would be able to do this.
Mei Chao Bing’s brows furrowed once again when he heard that but he still nodded once more and tried again to push those thoughts away. Unfortunately, he didn’t have any more luck.
In the meantime, blue butterfly had kept busy, alerting the other two that she wanted them to get in the right state as well. Actually, Tong Chen was the one who had the easiest time entering it. She wasn’t sure why. Maybe when he fought, he was in a similar state. After he had grasped it for the first time, he had always been able to make it work in just a few minutes. As for the other two, they always needed longer than that, half an hour at the very least. So it was better to give them time to prepare.
Now that that was done, she opened her eyes again and looked at Mei Chao Bing. Seeing his expression that was all tangled up, she couldn’t help but sigh. “He isn’t getting it, is he?”
Tong Chen gave a hum that could have meant anything but then couldn’t help but comment. “Well, you basically left him to his own devices there, not even bothering to explain.”
“You’re still here, aren’t you?” She didn’t bother letting him accuse her any longer though and instead turned to Mei Chao Bing. “If you can’t stop thinking about everything, then try to focus on one thing. Imagine … one person or place or object. Something that you can focus all your thoughts on. Sometimes, that helps.”
Mei Chao Bing nodded and pondered what exactly he should use. “Does it make a difference what we use?”
Blue butterfly thought for a moment and then sighed. “Well, that depends on what you can imagine and focus the best on. Some people will get distracted if it is a person, a place might be too complicated, but an object might be too simple, making their thoughts stray. Just try out whatever works best for you.”
Mei Chao Bing nodded and then tried to think of something. He didn’t know what would be the best option. For a fleeting moment, he figured that the one person he could imagine without lacking the slightest detail would be Yun Bei Fen. But he somehow felt that this wouldn’t be good.
He thought of the Teng Yong Sect next but that kind of vast expanse might make it difficult. No, if it was a place, something smaller would be better. He didn’t think too much and just went for something currently present in his mind: the place they were currently at.
He had just entered this valley and he always made it a point to survey his surroundings so he had no trouble imagining it. Feeling that the details at the side might be too fuzzy, he still shrunk what he focused on.
He thought of the platform they were all seated on, imagining how the stone rose from the ground, the cold touch against his legs, and the black lines that were drawn on top with some unknown material and for a purpose that he was not aware of.
In his mind, all this became alive, and without realizing it, he entered the state that blue butterfly was looking for. Unfortunately, she did not pull him into that dream as Tong Chen had said she would because right now, blue butterfly was preoccupied with something else entirely.