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Chapter 108: S-rank Demons (2)

Click… Followed by the pressing of a keystroke, a series of reminders appeared: account username of A-rank Xingtian Legion Commander Xu Yangyi has been detected. Please confirm your spiritual sense. The symbol of the Featherwood Guard emerged, and Xu Yangyi crooked the corner of his mouth, using his spiritual sense to scan.

Ding dong… A voice pleasant to the ears sounded out: “Confirmation success. All contents of A-rank demons and above are not to be divulged.” He massaged his temple. It was unknown which company had developed such an analogous scanning function, but it had long since been incorporated into the present cultivation world. The internet brought a convenience that far transcended flying pigeons for the transmission of books or jadeslips in the same fashion. Naturally, such a thing as an account had spread through the cultivation world. 

He possessed not the skill to think of this, massaging his temples purely because of the uncomfortableness brought upon by proceeding to look at the computer for several hours. Nonetheless, he only sipped at his coffee, continuing to throw himself into browsing. The computer went dark. It didn’t immediately display an image, but rather the emergence of a row of small characters. 

S-rank demons are not concluded by realm, but instead the final determinations of bloodline. Their realms may not be high. However, each bloodline is equal to a lost species of ancient times. As to so far that many are mythologized creatures. Moreover, there is a possibility that living fossils which have survived from distant times to the present exists… All images and videos have exchanged with the lives of hundreds and thousands of cultivators. Viewer discretion is advised.” 

This paragraph of words could not be removed. Twenty seconds later, the computer screen lit up and transformed into the first image! It was a demon that had a head like a dragon’s and a body akin to a tortoise’s. It hadn’t undergone Form Transformation, calmly dwelling in a tremendous lake. Xu Yangyi’s gaze faintly brushed over and looked clearly at the data below the image.

“Hunan Province’s Dongting Lake. 1931. Wyvern bloodline, purity: 70%. Realm: Initial-stage Foundation Establishment. Disappeared in 1957, location unknown. Strength evaluation: has already awakened innate divine ability, a water-related divine ability. Gentle disposition, no tendency of brutality. Skin and flesh possess the natural ability to weaken qi. Initial evaluation: non-dangerous demon.”

Xu Yangyi swept the data with an eye and immediately clicked down on his computer mouse. He didn’t expect that on his second image, he would surprising see an “acquaintance”.

“Jadewave, birth date unknown. In 1579, Jadewave appeared at the Northeast’s Four Great Joint Pools, taking Old Black Mountain as lair. There are accounts of him once emerging in 1207. Realm: unknown (suspect to be at the middle stage or late stage of Foundation Establishment). Bloodline: unknown. Based on the scanning of biologists, there is an enormous possibility he is a lost prehistoric species that has awakened after a geological era. Bloodline purity: unknown.”

“Strength evaluation: has awakened innate divine ability, water-related divine ability. Neutral standing. Disposition to offensive tendency. Initial evaluation: secondary danger-level demon.”

Xu Yangyi narrowed his eyes, his hand faintly pausing here. He could not help but to gasp in admiration towards the cultivation powers’ degree of work comprehensiveness. Perhaps even Jadewave himself hadn’t discovered amidst his unwittingness that he had already been examined for the most part. Especially his blood. The only data missing in calculation was what species he was.

Xu Yangyi was in no reluctance to leave, continuing to click away. Flipping through page by page, he saw a colossal shadow at the bottom of the ocean. He saw a massive eye under a large crack at the epicenter of a great earthquake. He saw a several-tens-of-meters wide bird’s nest in a cave in a mountain that had none had entered for over a hundred years… Time drifted on by minutes and seconds. Another four hours passed… 

At the door, a pair of high heels came to a halt. Mao Ba’er glanced over: “The person you wanted to find hasn’t been found. In the whole nation, her name doesn’t exist, but the people of the same name don’t come up. That can only be considered luck.” 

“I know.” The woman gently lifted her white cotton jacket and sat down: “Is he inside?”

Mao Ba’er nodded: “I advise you not to go in to find him. Give him a bit of his own time.”

The woman serenely fished out a cigarette: “Want one?”

“No thank you.” Mao Ba’er deadpanned in a rare moment.

The woman didn’t say anything. Click. A light combusted into flame. She took a soft drag: “What were you guys like… before?”

“What were we like, huh…” A wisp of reminiscing brilliance streaked through Mao Ba’ers eyes, his tail wagging: “The first time I saw him, he was a child that had a tendency to cry…”

“Him?” The woman was stunned, a little incredulous as she puffed out blue smoke: “He had a tendency to cry?”

“What do you think?” Mao Ba’er glared at the other with an eye: “How could an eight-year-old kid not cry upon witnessing a scene like that with his own eyes? I remember he cried for an entire half a year. Afterwards, he didn’t open his mouth for a whole three. Once he was eleven, the first thing he then said was that he would enter Heavens Law. Later on, once another year passed, he spoke again.”

The woman didn’t follow with words, merely taking drags of her cigarette.

“However, from that point on, he seemed to transform, in no way lagging behind in any training. I remember back then I had come to Heavens Law for my internship from manager-training courses. With the glimpse of the eye, I saw a young boy drenched in the rain, gasping for breath as he rain and burdened with several tens of kilos on his back.” Mao Ba’er narrowed his eyes and sighed: “I was interested then. I asked him: are you being punished?”

“Can you guess what he said?”

“No.” The woman laughed.

“He said that his afternoon training still wasn’t done.” Mao Ba’er shrugged: “I immediately felt that was really difficult to find such an idiot… and so, I observed him for five years. The first year I watched him, he was in last place. In the second year, out of the entire academy’s thirty-plus, he was twenty. In the third year, he was fifteen. In the fourth year, he was ten. In the fifth, third. After that…” Mao Ba’er glanced at the tightly shut room: “He’s always been number one.”

The woman was silent for several seconds and stamped out her cigarette: “Each man different from the norm has their own defining story.”

“The assailants of everyone at the academy had been found, but only his remained. He should be this strong… It’s a natural matter of course… He should…” Mao Ba’er was somewhat rueful: “In these ten-odd years, he finally has the moment, the opportunity to access these things. This time MUST be his.”

The woman shook her head: “If Heavens Law can’t find it, then how could he possibly do so?”

“It's not like that.” Mao Ba’er spoke with seldom seriousness: “There are demons, because they are too precious, that Heavens Law cannot touch… Some demons have already been included on the protection list by the Myriad Demons Palace. Humans are likewise left to inaction… For example, if a panda kills or injures someone, will the Chinese government sentence it with the death penalty? They won’t… It’s very possible that his assailant belongs among one of these demons…”

The woman didn’t speak again, only looking at the door, faintly somewhat lost in thought. Another hour passed. Xu Yangyi came out, his eyes fairly bloodshot. It was uncertain if it was because of his tangled emotions of the past or due to facing towards the computer. His expression was as usual, tranquil like lakewaters. Seeing the woman at the door, the crook of his mouth seemed to split: “How did you get in?” His voice was flat, so dull that not a shred of inflection could be discerned.

“I heard you became a commander. I originally thought you had already died three years ago in that chaos, so I’ve specifically to see an old friend.” The woman softly laughed as she stood up. She was beautiful, not at all inferior to some movie stars. Three years of time hadn’t left too much of a trace upon her body. Over twenty years old, she was like a honey peach waiting to be plucked. Waves of long wine-red hair draped slanted over her shoulders. Beneath her white jacket was a tank top that exposed her navel. Under her short white skirt were an arcing pair of long fair legs, so beautiful that they enchanted men. She too was calm, bereft of excitement or sadness. These emotions seemed to have parted with her. 

“Sorry.” Xu Yangyi nodded: “I didn’t find your younger sister.”

“It doesn’t matter.” Su Lianyue apathetically lowered her head, pursing her red lips: “In any case… I didn’t have that great of a wish…”

“I had my friend investigate the entire nation’s population, accurate down to each village, but I still couldn’t find her.” Xu Yangyi looked into her eyes and said: “Among the people I’ve met, she isn’t one of them.”

Su Lianyue didn’t open her mouth. Eventually, she raised her head and laughed as she fiddled with her long hair: “We haven’t met for so long; what’s the point of saying these things? C’mon, big sis will treat you to a drink.”

Xu Yangyi quietly looked at her. After ages, the corner of his mouth suddenly curved: “I thought you came to tell me that you had my child.”

“Don’t be so dramatic.” Su Lianyue’s mood seemed to come to life, and she chuckled, her hand naturally coming to coil around Xu Yangyi’s powerful arm: “What is it, commander? Won’t you do me the honor?”

Xu Yangyi laughed: “Let’s go.” As they passed through the lobby, Peony looked on in shock at the pair, her lips trembling. How could this be! Commander got a woman in the span of a day?! How could this be okay! How could such a scandal break news when the Yangyu Army has just recently been established! No way! This has to be covered up! To preserve the commander’s heartthrob image!

The little bar was quiet. The two of them ordered alcohol and silently sat down in their seats, their eyes drawing the outline of the other’s silhouette.

“You haven’t changed.” Xu Yangyi said insipidly. 

“I’ve changed.” Su Lianyue’s right hand held a lit feminine cigarette, yet she didn’t take a drag: “I’ve grown old.”

“You on the contrary are still exactly as handsome as you were three years ago… I heard you have a support team?”

Xu Yangyi laughed: “So I’ve heard, but I haven’t seen it.” 

“Then…” Su Liangyue looked at the liquor tray brought over by the server and softly laughed: “Has anyone utilised the method I gave to you to find my little sister?”

“Presently none.” Xu Yangyi laughed dully as he looked at Su Lianyue use both of her snow-white hands to gently put six cups of alcohol down on the table and said: “What is this? I’m not versed in the things or ordinary people.”

“Its name is the last man.” Su Lianyue smiled as she pushed over a cup, the brownish-yellow liquid refracting an intoxication radiance beneath the lighting: “I ordered it especially for you. The standard drinking method is to drink all six cups in one go.”

A silver pair of tongs picked up a sparkling, pure ice cube. Followed by a thunk, it was tossed into the alcohol cup. A splashing wine pearl appeared to reflect the gazes of the two. Xu Yangyi didn’t say anything, picking up the cup and draining it. One cup was answered with another cup. Tonight, the two of them were both frustrated people.

The yesterday that abandons me can no longer remain. The today that vexes my mind is of more worry.  

No one spoke. Finishing the six cups, Xu Yangyi tugged on Su Lianyue’s hand to get up and leave. In a five-star hotel, both of their upper bodies were in tight embrace as they fell onto a bed. There was no light, only the dotting starlight from outside the room. The night wind enters the heart, blowing a wrinkle on springtime water.

“I’m too weak.” Amidst the tranquility, Xu Yangyi’s voice left his mouth with complication: “S-rank demons aren’t based on cultivation, only bloodline… however, the current me isn’t even an opponent for the weakest among them…”

“Maybe outsiders see me as weak, but in fact… simply compared with Foundation Establishment seniors, they can’t even look me right in the eye…” A burst of night wind breezed into the room as it followed the wake of an opening French window. Su Lianyue’s gaze was tender, her hand unhurriedly stroking and caressing the other’s back. She laughed as she said: “You’re strong. Who not of Qi Condensation has arrived here, step by step? In the realm of Qi Condensation, how many are there that are capable of besting you? At least in my eyes, you’re the strongest Qi Condensation cultivator I have ever seen. You haven’t found it?” Su Lianyue stroked the head of spiky hair before her and asked softly. 

Unrelated, there was only a lion in an unseen place licking at its wounds. At the time of his next emergence, he would still be the king of all beasts. Right now, she was just a lioness helping him lick his wounds. Xu Yangyi didn’t open his mouth. Eventually, Su Lianyue heard a slightly smothered sound: “Mhm.”

It carried a whiff of wine and a tiny release of tension, difficult in its liberation. 

“You’ll find it.” Su Lianyue looked at the starlight outside the window, gently patting the other’s back.

[1] This line is from a poem by Tang Poet Li Bai. Basically, it means to live in the present, not the past, if you didn’t pick up on it.

[2] "The night wind enters the heart, blowing a wrinkle in springtime water” This line is from a famous Tang Poet Feng Yansi, an idea of rippling waves on the surface of water.

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