Joy of Life - Chapter 530 - Meeting At Dong Mountain[Updated at: 2021-01-12 01:49:41]
Chapter 530: Meeting At Dong Mountain
Translator: Nyoi-Bo Studio Editor: Nyoi-Bo Studio
At this moment, Gao Da thought he was flying.
He flew over the layers of green forest in the middle of the great Dong Mountain and faint mist in the forests. He flew over the arrows that had been fired high. He flew higher and higher.
The higher he flew, the furtherer he saw. In that instant, Gao Da saw the mountain gate at the foot of the mountain. He saw the long stone path, blood stains on the stones, flashes of knives in the forest, and the sword shadow by the stone path that was like a venomous snake.
Then, he fell down heavily, breaking through countless branches before landing with a crash on the wet floor of the forest. He almost fell off the steep cliff.
Gao Da gave a muffled grunt and used the zhenqi in his body to forcefully resist the attack. He bounced up again like he was full of springs. His hands gripped the hilt of his long knife tightly. Raising his foot, he got ready to charge once more onto the deadly path.
With one move, he felt all the bones in his body had shattered at the same time. A grunt came through his nose. The pain was impossible to endure. At the same time, two streams of blood leaked out from his nose.
Gao Da’s legs turned to water. Unconsciously, he turned his hand to stab the long knife into the ground to support his body. Unexpectedly, as the tip of the knife came in contact with the muddy ground, it shattered into countless pieces of metal in an instant.
Amidst a crisp clanging sound, Gao Da fell miserably into the mud in the forest. The knife at his side had shattered. All he held in his hand was a pitiful remnant of the knife hilt. His eyes were full of shock and fear. He appeared unspeakably pitiful.
He had been sent flying by one person and one sword.
As Fan Xian’s personal guard, Gao Da had the strength of a level-eight ace. How mighty was he when he had forced back the enemies along in the Northern Qi Palace? Even among the Tiger Guards in the Palace, he could be considered one of the top. However, he had unexpectedly been swatted aside like a mosquito.
Gao Da looked at the sword light on the distant stone path with a complicated gaze and darkness in his heart.
Fan Xian had taken them, the seven Tiger Guards, far away from Danzhou. They had unexpectedly been brought by the Emperor to Dong Mountain. Following that, there was the assassination of the Emperor. As a Tiger Guard, his first and foremost task was to protect the Emperor’s safety. Although Gao Da didn’t know that Sir Fan junior had already slipped down the precipice, he still led the other six Tiger Guards into the larger group of palace guards. They began to carry out a merciless massacre on the steep stone path.
With over a hundred Tiger Guards guarding one mountain path, logically speaking, there wasn’t an ace in the world who could break through and ascend the mountain.
However, there were always a few existences that didn’t follow logic. For example, the Qing Kingdom’s Great Grandmaster Ye Liuyun, who had dissolved into a flowing cloud and passed over earlier. Or, the man holding a sword and killing all in his path as he focused only on what was in front of him. His sword intention had already reached a peak.
Gao Da swallowed the slightly sweet saliva in his mouth and forcefully calmed his breathing. The noises he could hear from the stone path were becoming weaker and weaker. He knew that his brothers had probably already died by the hand of that Great Grandmaster.
The most foundational requirement of a Tiger Guard was loyalty to the Emperor. Even though they knew that the person in front of them was the most powerful in the world, they stood with unswerving determination on the stone path in front of the Emperor’s body. Spraying out blood for a just cause, their chests were split open. Undaunted by perils, they refused to take a single step back.
Gao Da’s first reaction t was that he should charge over and stand, once again, in front of that terrifying man and become another roaming spirit under his blade, even if he had already suffered heavy injuries and his sword had shattered into little pieces.
However, in this instant, Gao Da hesitated a little.
On the long stone path covered with blood, countless Tiger Guards had tried a seven-person surround, using the techniques learned during daily practice to defeat a ninth-level ace. All their hard work was in vain. The sword that seemed to be from the underworld and carried a relentless energy danced round lightly. It was burdened with a heavy air of murder. It chopped through their knives, arms, and heads.
The reason Gao Da was able to survive, even after flying out, was because, he had been affected by two years of Fan Xian’s influence. Involuntarily, his merciless knife carried a faint mark of Fan Xian’s little tricks.
He no longer killed mercilessly and refused to retreat. Thus, even though he still could not hold out against one attack from that man and his meridians had been attacked and split by the sword intent, he still survived.
Since he had survived, was he going to go back and die? No!
A strange light flashed through Gao Da’s eyes. Sir Fan junior had said countless times that in all matters, one had to first preserve their own life. Only then was there a chance to correct things. Dong Mountain had been surrounded. If he charged out once more and died on the stone path, that wouldn’t fix anything.
He used his hand to cover his mouth. Fresh blood flowed out between the cracks in his fingers and didn’t make a single sound. He looked down below the woods. The rebel army’s defensive blockade had relaxed a little because of the arrival of the two powerful figures.
Gao Da gritted his teeth. His eyes were filled with unswerving determination. He decided he was going to find an opportunity to break out.
From the moment he made this decision, he was no longer just a Tiger Guard of the royal family. He had no idea how much shock this decision of his would bring to the world in two years.
Drip, drip. Drops of blood slowly dripped down. It was a very slight noise, but seemed ear-piercing to the point that those present felt that sound of blood dripping was better at cleaning up one’s spirit than the sound of the clock in the old temple behind them.
The blood was dripping from the tip of a sword.
This sword rose slowly and passed over the last level of stone stairs and appeared in front of everyone on the summit of Dong Mountain.
The sword was very normal. Nothing unusual could be seen. Even the hilt of the sword was casually wrapped with a layer of hemp rope and appeared rather old and tattered.
It was this ordinary sword and the not very reflective blade of the sword that emanated a chill and a power. It made one feel fearful, particularly as the blood on its blade slowly collected at the tip and then slowly dropped down. It seemed to make those who were watching feel that the blood on the tip of their hearts was also flowing out of their body.
Their faces all became pale. Then, they saw the hand and person who held this sword.
He wore a straw hat and hemp clothing. His figure was not big and tall. On the contrary, he appeared to be small and short.
This was at complete odds with Ye Liuyun’s image of being carefree and unconcerned with the mortal world. This man, because of the smallness of his body, tattered hemp clothing, dirt and blood covered body, and bloody and broken sword in his hands, appeared incomparably wretched.
No one laughed because of this wretchedness. They knew that when he killed, he was merciless. Speaking in regards to the level of terror, he was even scarier than Ye Liuyun.
Old Eunuch Hong looked peacefully at the wretched sword master on the steps and smiled slightly. He slowly drew back the tyrannical aura he had emanated. His entire body bent down. He returned to the appearance of being an elderly eunuch.
The Qing Emperor watched the stone steps with a cold expression. Looking at Ye Liuyun and the newcomer, he took a light step forward and calmly said, “Looks like Yunrui really put down the capital this time. Uncle, how could you go crazy with her? Family and country, family and country. To betray the country for your family, I had truly not expected this.”
Since the terrifying man was standing with Ye Liuyun, it meant that the most powerful and strange old creatures in the world had come together and made a decision. They could not allow the Qing Kingdom’s most powerful Emperor to date continue existing.
Ye Liuyun smiled warmly but did not explain or defend himself.
Ever since the terrifying figure wielding a sword had come to the top of the precipice, everyone had fallen silent. They were terrified of disturbing of him. However, the Qing Emperor was not scared at all. He stared coldly at the hemp robe full of holes and mockingly said, “Sigu Jian, why are you not retiring in the Sword Hut? What are you doing at Dong Mountain? Look at your wretched appearance. Do you really think you won’t have to pay after kill all of my Tiger Guards? An idiot will always be an idiot. After the Qing court cured your idiocy, it’s fine that you didn’t repay us. But, you just had to take your sword and forcefully kill your way up the mountain, using up all of your zhenqi. Looks like after all these years, your brain still doesn’t work any better.”
A short man, an old and broken sword, and a body of wretched clothing had mercilessly killed his way up the stone steps and killed over a hundred Tiger Guards. In the entire world, there was only Sigu Jian who only concerned himself with what was in front of him, who pushed forward with compelling sword intent, and who protected Dongyi and the surrounding vassal states for 20 years with a single sword.
No one was disrespectful toward Sigu Jian. Only the Qing Emperor dared speak to him in such a tone. However, when the mocking words fell into the ears of those who listened closely, one could hear there was a sense of severity outside but fragility inside.
No one ignored the Emperor speaking to them. However, Sigu Jian couldn’t even be bothered to glance at him. He only stared in a daze at old Eunuch Hong at the Emperor’s side. Gradually, the eyes of this Great Grandmaster began to burn. It was as if he watched to pierce through the shadow beneath the straw hat and melt off old Eunuch Hong’s pale face.
The small Sigu Jian opened his mouth. His voice was not like his body. It was bright like a great bell. His tone was relaxed but trembled slightly with excitement.
“It was you just now, right? What powerful zhenqi…” Sigu Jian stared at a daze at old Eunuch Hong. “I know Fan Xian has also taken this path. So, you are his teacher. That means the person who let out their power a dozen years ago in the Royal Palace in Jingdou was you. The rumors under heaven do indeed make sense.”
The Emperor of Qing Kingdom had been completely ignored by this Great Grandmaster. Although the Emperor was not angry, his gaze gradually became colder. Looking at Sigu Jian, he said, “You have tried to assassinate me three times, yet you’ve tragically retreated without even seeing my face. Did you receive an unexpected surprise today?”
It seemed that it was only right now that Sigu Jian heard what the Emperor had said. His gaze turned to him. Looking at the Emperor’s face, he suddenly shook his head. “You are much worse looking than your son. What is there to look at?”
The Emperor smiled slightly, “Naturally, you are talking about An Zhi. You’ve met him before?”
Sigu Jian tilted his head and said, “I have a granddaughter disciple named Lu Sisi. Her sister had clearly been killed by Fan Xian. After seeing Fan Xian from a distance in Hangzhou, this girl completely forgot her hatred and became a love-struck fool. Every day, she’s holding some “Banxianzhai Poetry Anthology” and reading it. Fan Xian, that pretty boy, must look pretty good.”
The sea breeze gently blew past and wound through the summit of the mountain. The Qing Emperor laughed loudly and said, “You Dongyi people are indeed all a little silly.”
After a moment of thought, Sigu Jian said seriously, “I am an idiot. My little disciple is even more of an idiot. And, my granddaughter disciple is a love-struck fool,. This is as it should be.”
Then, this Great Grandmaster suddenly gazed at the Emperor and said, “In things like governance and war, I am not as good as you. There are few in the world who are more powerful than you. Therefore, I must be respectful to you. Just then, I was impolite to you. Please don’t take it to heart.”
“You are too polite.” The Emperor seemed to be a bit enchanted and bowed slightly.
The Emperor and Sigu Jian began to laugh loudly at the same time. Even the increasingly powerful sea wind could not stop the spreading of this laughter. Sigu Jian’s laughter was imbued with pure zhenqi and could break through the window without a problem. The Emperor’s laugh could do so because of the heroic spirit he had cultivated after being Emperor for a long time.
The laughter stopped abruptly. An awkward silence descended. It seemed that neither side knew how to continue with this absurd drama.
The killer and the killed. This was a question and not a lengthy drama that needed them to exchange pleasantries, chat, speak of history, or tell stories.
Why did the Qing Emperor and Sigu Jian clumsily perform such a scene earlier?
The Qing Emperor slowly put his hands behind his back and sighed. Without looking at the two Great Grandmasters by the stone stairs, he calmly said, “Originally, I had set up this plan in accordance to Yunrui’s intentions in an attempt to keep uncle here. I had not expected Yunrui’s plan to be so crazy or consider the safety of the country by binding Dongyi and Northern Qi to her battle carriage.”
He turned his head back. Without a glimmer of fear, he calmly looked at the shadowy part of Sigu Jian’s face under the straw hat. “The Great Grandmasters have not appeared for a long time. Once they do, they are certain to rock the world. Today, both of you have come here to accomplish your mission. Although I am not afraid of death, I don’t want to die. That is why I have no choice but to delay. I do not understand why you would delay with me for so long.”
Sigu Jian was silent for a moment. His wrist naturally dropped down. Appearing somewhat rushed and ill at ease, he smiled strangely and said, “Why am I so interested in this eunuch? Of the four strange creatures in this world, the three of us could be considered soul brothers. Only this eunuch likes to hide in the palace. It is because I understand Ye Liuyun that I understand his personality. If it was possible, he would act by himself and would not wait for us outsiders to interfere with the Qing Kingdom’s internal politics.”
Sigu Jian became calm and said respectfully to Eunuch Hong, “Even if you are here, Ye Liuyun would still act.”
He said one last thing as an explanation for the Qing Emperor’s question. “Naturally, Ye Liuyun has his own reasons for not taking action so I can only wait and see why he didn’t take action immediately.”
Ye Liuyun smiled gently and turned his body to face Sigu Jian. “Stupid Jian. Do you still not feel it at this time?”
Sigu Jian’s body was small, so the straw hat on his head appeared particularly large. A patch of shadow completely hid his face. At this moment, even though the shadow was heavy, the people on the summit seemed to see a bitter smile on the corner of the Great Grandmaster’s lips and a strange expression on his face.
Everyone felt their hearts jump. They wondered what kind of realization would make someone like Sigu Jian, who regarded swords as sentimental and could kill people like mowing down grass, be silent for so long.
Sigu Jian turned and straightforwardly raised his sword in greeting toward the door of the old temple behind everyone’s back. A moment of silence later, he said, “I truly cannot understand why you are joining in on these stupid mortal matters.”
The officials and priests that Sigu Jian’s gaze landed on were terrified. They quickly moved out of the way, terrified of being touched by his gaze. Following Sigu Jian’s gaze, the people split up to create a path, revealing the black wooden door of the old temple in the back and Wu Zhu, who stood outside in full black as if he had already combined into one with the temple.
Sigu Jian’s gaze pierced through the air like two swords, landing on Wu Zhu’s clean face and the black cloth that seemed impervious to dirt and dust.
Wu Zhu did not move or have any reaction.
Sigu Jian sighed.
The Emperor began to laugh again. His laugh this time was unconstrained. “I can come, why can’t Lao Wu come?”
The Emperor withdrew his smile and looked coldly at Sigu Jian.
Ye Liuyun smiled bitterly and shook his head, saying to Sigu Jian, “When the mountain was surrounded, Fan Xian was on the mountain. Naturally, he also came.”
Sigu Jian had no interest in the specific process of when they surrounded the mountain. After pausing for a moment, he suddenly opened his mouth and began to curse with complete disregard for his manner and dignity as a Great Grandmaster. He managed to curse for a number of breaths without stopping and used all the filthy language he could think of!
“F*cking Yun Zhilan and Yan Xiaoyi! Two dumbasses! Why did they blockade that pretty boy on the mountain?” Sigu Jian cursed with panting breaths. “Are they trying to kill me?”
Suddenly, his state of mind trembled. He looked icily at the Qing Emperor. Laughing mockingly, he said, “Bringing Fan Xian to the mountain and having found such a good helper… No wonder you’re not scared at all. Looks like I was wrong earlier. I am not as good as you at governance and the military, but I am also not as good as you at suppressing my own children and family.”
The Qing Emperor smiled slightly and didn’t say anything.
It was clear that both Sigu Jian and Ye Liuyun were shocked and wary at Wu Zhu’s sudden appearance at the summit of Dong Mountain.
Although they were Great Grandmasters, history and the miraculous incidental happenings in this world had already proved many things. Otherwise, Sigu Jian would not have put down his face and sent Thirteenth Wang, his last disciple whose temperament was most like his but exceptionally gentle, to Fan Xian.
Was it not because of this blind man?
Sigu Jian suddenly looked at Wu Zhu and quietly said, “Don’t get involved in this matter. Go down the mountain. This Emperor isn’t a good bird. Us elders will give you a promise. Fan Xian will live well in this life. Even if he doesn’t stay in the South Kingdom, if he comes to Dongyi, I will let him be the master of a city.”
Everyone present remained silent, but their eyes began to show expressions of shock and fear. They didn’t know who the black-clothed man standing in front of the temple door was to be able to stop two Great Grandmasters the instant before they carried out their assassination of the Emperor and make Sigu Jian, who was always ruthless, give out such a big promise.
No one would doubt the words of a Great Grandmaster.
Everyone was curious as to who exactly the black-clothed man tied so intimately to Sir Fan junior was.
The Emperor’s brows furrowed slightly. He realized that Wu Zhu had his head lowered as if he were thinking about something.
Wu Zhu thought for a while then slowly said, “I’m sorry. Fan Xian asked me to protect the Emperor’s life.”
Like Ye Liuyun, Sigu Jian also opened his mouth wide and sank into a shock that was greater even than seeing Wu Zhu. It took a moment before he shook his head and said, “After 30 years of not seeing you, who knew that you became chattier. I didn’t know it was you, I would have thought you were an imposter.”
Wu Zhu shook his head. He couldn’t be bothered to reply to this boring comment.
Sigu Jian straightened the hat on his head and said, “Wu Zhu, we were friends in the past. I don’t want to take action against you. You have to know, I have tolerated a great deal from Fan Xian in the two years after Niulan Mountain.”
Everyone’s hearts jumped again, wondering just what kind of friendship did they have?
Wu Zhu said in a quiet voice, “At that time, your snot had reached the ground. Absolutely filthy.”
Sigu Jian laughed loudly. “I am still just as filthy. I am still that snot-nosed and idiotic teen. How about it? Do you want to go squat with me?”
The corner of Wu Zhu’s lips tilted up slightly as if he wanted to smile. In the end, he didn’t manage it and only shook his head.
Sigu Jian was silent for a long time. He then shook his head and sheathed his sword in the scabbard at his side. Ye Liuyun asked, “What are you doing?”
Sigu Jian pointed at old Eunuch Hong and Wu Zhu. He then looked at Ye Liuyun and said without good humor, “Two on two. Only an idiot would make a move.”
Ye Liuyun put on an awkward expression and said, “But are you not an idiot?”
“I am an idiot,” Sigu Jian said seriously, “but I am not a lunatic.”
For the people present, including the officials of Qing Kingdom, priests, and a few of the eunuchs, this was actually their first time seeing these legendary figures who were like gods in the heart of mankind. After the initial respect and fear, seeing this conversation, countless absurd feelings grew in their hearts. Were these old men like children really the Great Grandmasters that had secretly influenced the state of the world for the last 20 years?
The Emperor watched this scene and waited for the curtain drop on this drama with calm in his heart.
If Sigu Jian and Ye Liuyun truly retreated, then this drama would become a farce. However, Sigu Jian was not an actual idiot. He knew what horrifying consequences there would be if he actually allowed the Qing Emperor to return to Jingdou alive.
At the top of his voice, Sigu Jian cursed, “In any case, I won’t do a two on two. If that traitor doesn’t come out now, I am immediately going down the mountain.”
Hearing these words, the Emperor’s pupils constricted slightly. His expression became cold.
Clouds floated across the middle of the mountain. A heavenly sword split open the stone path. Falling leaves went with the wind.
The wind went by. The light dispersed. In a moment, a third person wearing a straw hat floated naturally to the summit of the mountain like a falling leaf.
Ku He had finally arrived.