When Bai Su saw Su Ming hypnotized and bewildered for an instant, she no longer felt pleased with herself. There was only an indescribable feeling within her.
She knew that her dream… might very well have been real.
That frail looking boy in her dream gradually overlapped with the Su Ming before her.
Su Ming looked at Bai Su and walked towards her until he stood right before her. He looked at that familiar face, and after a long while, he lifted his hand and grabbed her right hand, lowering his head to look at it.
This was the first time he touched Bai Su’s skin. She shuddered and instinctively struggled, but she could not escape Su Ming’s grasp.
Most of the time, Su Ming only took note of Bai Su’s face, which was the exact same as Bai Ling’s. He had never observed any other part of her body, until now. He looked at Bai Su’s right pinky. It might be as white as a pearl, but it was curled up. It… could not straighten out.
Bai Su broke free from his grasp and took a few steps back before she looked at Su Ming with mixed feelings in her heart.
"You… You saw it?"
Su Ming nodded.
Bai Su was silent for a moment, then asked, "Why did this happen?"
When she lifted her head, that complicated look could still be seen in her heart. That finger was her secret. She did not want anyone knowing about it. It was her most vulnerable part, and she had not even told Si Ma Xin about it.
"You should not have interrupted my training…"
Su Ming shook his head and walked past Bai Su before sitting down on the stone outside his cave abode and bringing out his drawing board to resume drawing.
Bai Su stood still for a long while, then for the first time, she turned around quietly. Without making any noise, without becoming proud of herself, without any hint of fury, she left the ninth summit, bringing with her mixed feelings in her heart.
When she left, Su Ming lifted his head and looked in the direction she had left before sighing softly.
‘This is your destiny, and also my Creation… This is the path you chose, I didn’t force you to… When you can no longer tell who you are, Si Ma Xin will lose.’
Time trickled by without anyone noticing it, and in the blink of an eye, another three months passed by.
There were less than six months left till Sky Mist Shaman Hunt. During those six months, an increasing number of people in Freezing Sky Clan entered their final isolation, begun their final preparations, and occasionally, some Freezing Sky Clan disciples would travel together to go to the affiliated tribes located at the borders of the Great Tribe of Freezing Sky, which were located not too far away from the school itself.
There were quite a number of squares over there, and the disciples could buy some of the things they needed. Some people would even bring a lot of things that were unique to the other parts of the Land of South Morning to trade in those squares.
The Sky Mist Battle that only happened once a decade would also bring about a many new trading squares. They would not only be formed by the Great Tribe of Freezing Sky itself, but would of many outsiders as well.
This was even more so for the Great Sky Mist Battle that only happened once a century. That was why during this period of time, there were two incredibly lively spots in the entire Land of South Morning. One of them was the trading square outside Western Sea Clan, and the other was the trading square outside Freezing Sky Clan.
Almost every day, there would be Freezing Sky Clan disciples going to these trading squares to get the items they needed. And since the amount of people going to them increased, auctions would also be occasionally held. The items that were brought out during these auctions would usually incite a large amount of interest from the crowd.
During the last three months, besides copying the actions of the Golden Roc in flight, Su Ming also trained his body by adding more weight onto himself after a set amount of time. Right now, there were already eight ice hoops on his legs.
The eight hoops were hidden underneath Su Ming’s robes and no one knew about them besides him and Zi Che. Every single time the latter watched Su Ming walking as if he was the wind itself, he would feel shocked. He knew clearly just how heavy those eight hoops were. They were as heavy as hills, and under that weight, Su Ming would need to exert a great amount of effort to take a step.
Zi Che could be said to have witnessed everything that had happened to Su Ming after he wore those ice hoops. He had started relaxed, then whenever he added more ice hoops to each leg, he would be unable to take even a step forward. His body would tremble, and he would need to stand still for an entire day before he could marginally get used to it.
When he could walk around with ease with those three ice hoops on each leg, he added a fourth hoop and began a new round of getting used to that new weight. Gradually, those four ice hoops did not feel as if they weighed anything to Su Ming on his legs. It did not matter whether he walked or flew, he could do so at his normal speed.
Yet only Zi Che knew that Su Ming had poured in a large amount of effort to be able to do this. During these three months, he had practically not slept. Besides copying, having black fog surrounding his body and that Divine General Armor of his appearing, Su Ming used all the rest of his time getting used to the additional weights.
During these three months, Su Ming’s Divine General Armor would frequently appear. Sometimes, it would gather up and turn into Armor, and at other times, it would scatter around him. Every single time the black fog from his Armor appeared, Su Ming would pour all his attention into using fine control along with his divine sense to start making a series of combinations for his Armor.
These combinations were made according to the dozens of Runes Hu Zi had sent to him two months ago, and the changes were made according to the transformations within those Runes itself. This was that absurd idea Su Ming had had.
If he could not increase the methods he had to defend himself, then he would have to create them himself. The best way was to control the black fog he obtained when he was Awakening was to turn it into various Runes as the black fog was in the process of manifesting into his Armor.
In theory, it was simple, but when it really came down to it, it was difficult. Su Ming had no knowledge whatsoever regarding Runes, so it was hard to make them with the black fog without making any mistakes.
Besides, Hu Zi mostly relied on his natural talent in this area and could not explain the concepts clearly to Su Ming. Su Ming had to rely on himself to understand everything. Fortunately, his Picture Creation allowed him to copy everything in the world, and after spending a large amount of time on it, he had managed to form a Rune as the black fog turned into Armor after a dozen tries since he started.
However, not only was this Rune the most basic of all Runes, the transformations within it were also limited. After the few times it transformed, Su Ming could no longer control it. He would need more precise fine control and a far stronger divine sense before he could perhaps do it.
Nonetheless, Su Ming did not give up. Even if he had only succeeded once out of those dozens of times, and that success was not perfect, once he tested it out, he could clearly feel that the illusionary Divine General Armor’s defense had increased by a large amount.
This was a direction for him. When the day came that he could control it perfectly, then his Divine General Armor’s defense would be incredibly powerful, even though it had no physical form and was just a mere illusion.
Su Ming had been continuously training and making preparations during these three months. But besides training, Bai Su had also been coming every single day during those three months.
The complicated look in her eyes only appeared for the first few days. Once half a month went by, she seemed to have come around to her thoughts and returned to her unreasonable self. She maintained that particular appearance, and the outside of Su Ming’s cave abode would be noisy every single day.
"Su Ming, what exactly are you drawing? I’ve been watching you draw for several months, but nothing ever comes out!"
"Su Ming, see whether this looks similar, I drew a mountain!"
"Su Ming, can you just lift up your head and talk to me? Has anyone ever told you that you’re like a mute?!"
Snow floated down from the sky above the ninth summit. Bai Su sat beside Su Ming and glared at him in rage. There was a piece of black charcoal in her hands and a drawing board that was identical to the one Su Ming had in his hands. She drew on it angrily a few times.
Su Ming did not open his mouth to speak. He remained seated with his legs crossed and his eyes closed. Black fog surrounded his body and turned into several strange shapes, but they would disappear soon because they could not maintain their shape.
When she saw that Su Ming was not reacting, Bai Su picked up her drawing board and threw it at Su Ming angrily, but the moment that drawing board got close to him, it stopped in midair.
Bai Su stood up and threw the piece of charcoal in her hand at Su Ming as well.
That charcoal also stopped before Su Ming.
Bai Su seemed to be used to this sort of thing happening. She was not at all surprised and took a few quick steps towards Su Ming. She lifted her foot and was just about to kick him, but the moment she lifted her foot, she forced it down once again and glared at Su Ming, who still had his eyes closed, in anger.
She had tried to kick him like this before, but the consequences were horrible.
Yet when Su Ming continued sitting there with his eyes closed as if he did not hear her words, Bai Su could not control her temper. She gritted her teeth and lifted her foot to kick him.
"I’ll kick you, you stupid mute. I’ll kick you…"
She kicked, but before her foot touched Su Ming, she immediately let out a cry of surprise. As if she was caught by an invisible hand, she floated beside Su Ming with her head downwards… along with her drawing board and charcoal.
"Su Ming, you… you jerk!" Bai Su yelled out, and fury once again burned in her eyes. She tried twisting herself, but she still continued floating with her head pointing downwards.
As she continued yelling, Bai Su could not help but grow tired. As time passed by, she became dizzy and her cheeks became flushed. She decided to shut up, but the anger in her eyes did not go away. In her mind, she continued thinking of ways to deal with Su Ming.
At that moment, a long arc approached the place and turned into Zi Che on the platform. He took a few brisk steps forward to Su Ming’s side, and he also saw Bai Su, who was floating upside down.
When Bai Su saw Zi Che looking over, she started yelling again, "What are you looking at?! What’s so nice about it?! Haven’t you seen this before?!"
Zi Che straight up ignored Bai Su’s words. During these three months, he had already gotten used to her tantrums and Su Ming’s subsequent punishments for her.
"Master, there are no more ice rocks. I’ve searched through many places, but I couldn’t find them. The trading square at the borders of Freezing Sky Clan have been really lively lately, though. Many of the sect members go there regularly, so there must be ice rocks around.
"Please grant me permission to leave the ninth summit temporarily to go to the square in your place."
"Trading square?" Su Ming opened his eyes. The black fog around him seeped into his body and disappeared.
"The closer Sky Mist Battle gets, the more trading squares like these will appear at the borders between the Great Tribe of Freezing Sky and Freezing Sky Clan. Don’t worry, Master, I’ll only need half a month to return," Zi Che quickly replied.
"Be careful," Su Ming muttered softly.
He had gained some understanding towards controlling his Divine General Armor’s black fog lately and did not want his training to stop because he had to go out. He nodded his head, lifted his right hand, and tapped Zi Che’s body, temporarily lifting his restraints.