"Can you be my master?"
The sudden question shocked Huangfu Xin'er. She came to her senses after quite a while and uttered. "You..." She finally nodded her head.
Su Wan sneered and scanned the crowd. She did not want to take a disciple but it was the rule. She casually pointed at a person down below and said, "You."
Shangguan Yan raised her head, pointed at herself and said, "Me? Are you sure about that?" Su Wan frowned and said, "Cut the bullsh*t. Come and salute to your master!"
"Aye, master!" Shangguan Yan rolled her eyes and walked up while shaking her head. Su Wan was extremely impatient and said, "I picked you, which means I think highly of you. But what do you mean by your expression?"
Then, the other four True Disciples had also picked their disciples and were saluted. Chu Biefu then said, "The freshman competition is over now. Three days later, the disciples recruited last year will have a qualifying trial to the Violet Manor. You can come and watch the games."
After saying so, the freshmen were quiet, yet the other disciples of the Skygale Sect went into an uproar.
"Isn't the name of going to the Violet Manor set a few months ago?"
"What the hell is going on here?"
Su Wan smiled coldly and gave Huangfu Xin'er a glance. Huangfu Xin'er instantly turned pale with cold sweat on her forehead. She raised her head and looked at Chu Biefu, saying, "Senior Brother Chu, isn't the names set already?"
Chu Biefu smiled and said, "Due to some personnel changes a few days ago, it is necessary to re-select again. Junior Sister Huangfu, are you okay with this?"
Huangfu Xin'er now looked more terrible. She had just been injured, and the injury before recurred. How could she win three days later?
Xiao Chen also had found out the scheme within. He whispered to her ear, "Fear not. I'm here with you."
Huangfu Xin'er was startled and then looked at the one beside her. It was the disciple she had just accepted, but why his simple words had made her feel at ease?
Xiao Chen smiled gently and nodded to her, telling her not to worry. He then glimpsed at Su Wan and thought that this woman must have been making troubles for Huangfu Xin'er. However, now she accepted Shangguan Yan as her disciple, she would suffer a lot.
"Senior Brother Chu, my master says that she's okay with this."
Chu Biefu looked at him and nodded without saying anything.
The dusk fell gradually, and Xiao Chen followed Huangfu Xin'er up the mountain. All along the way, there were trees, grass, the scent from flowers, and dancing colorful butterflies. The sound of the waves and seagulls rose from afar. The two people kept silent.
Suddenly, a weird voice rose from behind. "Wow, look at the handsome little disciple you've picked there."
Xiao Chen turned around and saw the True Disciple that picked Shangguan Yan today. He said, "I don't care who you are, but you'd better leave my master alone."
Su Wan glared at him, saying, "How dare you to speak to your martial uncle like this?!" She then looked at Huangfu Xin'er and said coldly, "Junior Sister, it seems that the little disciple you've received has poor manners. You'd better teach him well. If someday he lost an arm or leg, don't say that I haven't warned you!"
Xiao Chen shot her a cold glance and said, "I think it's you that don't know the manners." Huangfu Xin'er pulled his arm and said, "Let's go, Han Chen."
When they arrived in the courtyard, Huangfu Xin'er turned and said, "Senior Brother Chu's cultivation is far beyond mine. But why did you refuse him?" Xiao Chen did not answer, so she continued, "You shouldn't have turned him down in front of so many people. Su Wan was right. You really don't understand things." She then turned and walked into the room before she came out with a fire-red jade plate.
"You chose me to be your master, and I haven't got anything valuable to gift you. This is the Fire-heart Jade. It came from the fire stones in the wild north. It can keep you warm. Take this."
Xiao Chen didn't refuse. He took it over and instantly felt warmth.
"I'll tell you some sect rules and basic cultivation methods first."
Huangfu Xin'er had been lecturing for three hours, and night already fell. The light gradually dimmed in the courtyard, so they could not see each other's faces clearly.
"Let's call it a day. You can go back now."
Xiao Chen nodded and turned to leave. When he walked to the gate, Huangfu Xin'er suddenly said, "By the way, the back mountain is a forbidden area of our sect. Ordinary disciples cannot go anywhere near there."
When Xiao Chen returned to the hillside not far from his dormitory, the night completely shrouded the place. The full moon rose from the sea level and made the sea flash.
The next day, Xiao Chen went to Huangfu Xin'er's courtyard and saw her fixing a broken zither. His hasty steps suddenly stopped, and he stood like a piece of wood at the gate. The zither was the one he gave to her.
"How was it broken?"
Huangfu Xin'er was startled and then hurriedly took the zither into the room. She came out a moment later and said, "Let me teach you some other skills today."
An hour later, Xiao Chen had not heard what she said and kept thinking about the broken zither. He asked, "Was it Su Wan?"
Huangfu Xin'er raised her head and said after a while, "Don't offend her. Her cousin will come in a couple of days. That man has high cultivation which is higher than my Senior Brother Qin. As for me... I may not be able to go there, which is also good. In this case, they won't trouble you after I'm gone."
In these days, Xiao Chen had more or less understood the disputes in the Skygale Sect. He asked, "Do you want to go to the Violet Manor very much?"
Huangfu Xin'er raised her head as a sense of sadness flashed on her face. She smiled and said nothing.
"I'll help you." Xiao Chen walked behind her and directly placed his palms on her back. Huangfu Xin'er was startled and shouted. "What are you doing?"
"Don't talk!" Xiao Chen ran his True Energy and pushed them into the wounds of her lung. The wounds had not been healed for a long time.
Ten minutes had passed. White gas was rising from Xiao Chen's head, and a thick layer of sweat cover his forehead. The lung wounds of Huangfu Xin'er were so deep that he could not heal them for a moment.
He took back his palm and said, "Your injury is very serious, but I'll think of some way to cure it." Huangfu Xin'er looked blankly at him, saying, "Who are you exactly?" She had never expected that his disciple's cultivation was far above her, not even lower than that of Qin Xiu.
Xiao Chen stood up. At the moment, he really wanted to tear off the mask on his face and remove the True Qi in his throat, but he could not. Once he lost something, he lost it forever. It was just like two lines, if they were parallel, they would never cross again.
In the afternoon, Xiao Chen took the broken zither back. In the third day, he fixed it and sent it back to Huangfu Xin'er.
"I've fixed it. There are still some defects though, but the tone is still the same."
The island lacked for materials, otherwise, he could restore its former look. She took over the zither and smiled gently, saying, "Thank you."
The breeze in the courtyard made them feel comfortable. Xiao Chen looked at the "Xin Chen" carved on the side of the zither. He carved the "Xin" on it, and Huangfu Xin'er carved the "Chen" on it.
He smiled gently and said, "Would you play a song? I'd like to hear you playing." Huangfu Xin'er nodded and placed the zither. As her fingers picked swiftly on the strings, an extremely gentle music sounded.
The sound of the zither was resounding with the intent of the player, and it felt like the half-moon under the cover of some clouds. After the song ended, its content was still lingering in the courtyard just like the breeze, bringing Xiao Chen into his memories.
"Look at this master and disciple, they are in a leisurely and carefree mood!" All of a sudden, an unfriendly voice rose from the outside. A red figure appeared, followed by a disciple in purple.
"So are you." Xiao Chen looked at the figure and said calmly.
Huangfu Xin'er stood on her feet and pulled Xiao Chen behind her, saying coldly, "What are you doing here?"
Su Wan smiled faintly and said, "Don't be nervous, junior sister. I'm here to tell you that tomorrow's matches had been arranged, and this is your opponent." She then heavily tossed a thing to Huangfu Xin'er.
Xiao Chen moved in a flash and took that thing with two fingers. It was a bamboo note with three words on it: Ling Yuxuan.
"Thank you for your kindness."
Su Wan snorted coldly. She planned to let Huangfu Xin'er fail to catch the bamboo note and make her look bad in front of Xiao Chen. The disciple in purple behind her stepped forth and smiled, saying, "I'm not worthy to be your opponent, please don't hurt me too much tomorrow."
Xiao Chen smiled faintly and said, "She will. You can leave now." Xiao Chen sized up the disciple and found his cultivation was at about Lv 7 or Lv 8 Qi Refining Realm. Huangfu Xin'er had not recovered yet, so she might not win.
Ling Yuxuan darted a disdainful look to Xiao Chen and snorted coldly. He then left with Su Wan.
After they walked far from the courtyard, Su Wan said, "She seems to have recovered a lot. Your brother will leave a few days later, let him give you another two layers of Mystic Skills, okay?"
Ling Yuxuan smiled and said, "Cousin, she's nothing but a weak girl. I can finish her in two moves. If not for Qin Xiu, I already make her..."
Su Wan raised her eyebrow and asked, "What?" Ling Yuxuan sneered and said, "Nothing. Cousin, don't get mad."
Su Wan snorted and said, "It's all on my father. My life at home was easy, but he insisted me to train in this Human World. Then, troubles just kept coming!"
In the courtyard, Xiao Chen helped Huangfu Xin'er sit down and said, "Don't worry, I'll push more cultivation to you." Huangfu Xin'er shook her head and said, "It won't work. Ling Yingfeng had his cultivation transferred to him, I can't beat him anyway."
Xiao Chen's brow furrowed. "Is he the one you told me before? The cousin of Su Wan?" Huangfu Xin'er nodded and said, "The Ling Family is a big cultivators' family in the Violet Manor, and they have some connections with the Su Family." She then raised her head to look at Xiao Chen, saying, "Han Chen, who are you exactly? I always think that you resemble someone a lot..."
Xiao Chen did not answer her and asked, "Is that Ling Yingfeng strong?"
"Have you heard of the List of Experts in Heaven and Earth?"
"It's a rank of experts in the Violet Manor. There are 36 experts on the Heaven List, and 72 experts on the Earth List. Those who rank on the Earth List are extraordinary experts, and those who rank on the Heaven List are even rarer and stronger. You are a hot-tempered person. If you meet someone on the List, just don't offend them."
Xiao Chen smiled and said, "Are you worrying about me?" Huangfu Xin'er frowned and said, "I'm serious. Don't tease me. A few months ago, that Ling Yingfeng managed to be ranked 29th on the Heaven List."
Xiao Chen smiled and said, "Aye, master!" Huangfu Xin'er lowered her head and said, "Your cultivation is far higher than mine. I feel bad to hear you call me master..."