Lady Cultivator - Chapter 186 - Who was the pitiful one?[Updated at: 2021-01-11 13:41:03]
Chapter 186: Who was the pitiful one?
Translator: Henyee Translations Editor: Henyee Translations
Three hundred years old…
Although she had long guessed Ren Yufeng must’ve either taken Look-Preserving Pills or used a cultivation technique with look-preserving effects, the fact that he was actually already three hundred years old really came as a surprise to her.
For Foundation Building cultivators, how old was three hundred years really? Early stage Foundation Building cultivators could only live until they were three hundred years old, while middle stage and late stage cultivators could live up to four hundred years old if they took good care of themselves. However, four hundred years old was the upper limit; generally, those cultivators would’ve already fallen before they reached that age.
If what Ren Yufeng said was the truth, he indeed wasn’t young. In other words, he already had one foot in the grave.
During realm-breakthroughs, it had always been “the younger the better.” For example, during foundation-building, elite disciples of cultivation groups could generally build their foundation when they were around thirty to fifty years old at the latest, but if they surpassed fifty years old and still couldn’t advance, then they were just the same as ordinary disciples. As for ordinary disciples, they generally built their foundation before they were a hundred years old. If they passed a hundred years old, their odds of succeeding would greatly decrease.
It was also the same for forming one’s Gold Core. Prior to two hundred years old was the best time to form one’s Gold Core. After two hundred years old, the hardships one would encounter during core-formation would greatly increase. If Ren Yufeng was already three hundred years old and his aptitude was really mediocre, then it was no wonder others thought he couldn’t advance to the Core Formation realm. Cultivators who formed their Gold Core when they were around three hundred years old existed, but their odds of success were much lower than young cultivators under two hundred years old. Unless they encountered fated chances, it was generally hard for them to make a realm-breakthrough.
Once they passed this point, they would be considered old. Being old… was a cultivator’s sorrow.
Ren Yufeng gazed into the nothingness in front of him and said slowly, “Do you guys think I’m very aggressive really because of my arrogance? If I wasn’t aggressive, not arrogant, who would’ve respected me? Even this woman, whose cultivation level was far below me, looked down on me!”
His face showed a very fierce expression, and he glared at the dying Xiahou Yuan.
For a while, no one spoke.
Xiahou Yuan couldn’t move already. Qiu Zhiming was stupefied. Ren Yufeng… had a vicious expression, but he just stared into the void silently.
Inside the Virtual Sky World, Mo Tiange was quietly watching them.
This was indeed how cruel the path of cultivation was. No matter how much of a genius one was in the beginning, they would still be ridiculed by others if they couldn’t make a realm-breakthrough.
However, Mo Tiange didn’t feel even a bit of sympathy for Ren Yufeng. He wasn’t the only cultivator who was turning old. Those Aura Refining cultivators, who were trapped in the Aura Refining realm their whole lives without making even the slightest progress and eventually exhausting their lifespans when they were just a hundred some years old, were much, much more pitiful than him, but so what? There were so many people in the cultivation world, and all of them had to pass this hurdle.
In fact, Ren Yufeng’s cultivation level was already in the late stage of the Foundation Building realm, and he was also accepted by a Core Formation cultivator as a disciple—forget about the elite disciples who obviously had some backing; which ordinary disciples would dare to look down on him? For example, Jiang Shanghang didn’t dare to show even the slightest disrespect to this “Senior Martial Brother Ren.” There were so many people on this journey, so Xiahou Yuan definitely wasn’t the only elite disciple there. Nevertheless, didn’t all of them consider him the leader? So what if they gossiped a bit in private? If cultivators’ hearts weren’t big enough to accept this trivial matter, how could they form their Gold Core? Maybe Ren Yufeng hadn’t progressed in so many years because his mental state had long entered a demonic barrier. Even if he could reach the peak stage of the Foundation Building realm, he definitely wouldn’t succeed in forming his Gold Core.
“Senior Martial Brother Ren…” Qiu Zhiming finally repressed his anger and said, “Are you really not going to let me go?”
Ren Yufeng looked at him coldly. “Do you have anything else to say?”
After losing all hope, Qiu Zhiming’s head dropped, and he became completely disheartened. However, a moment later, he seemed to sense a bit of hope. He straightened his back then said quickly, “Junior Martial Brother Tang and Junior Martial Brother Jiang have escaped. They must’ve reported this matter back to the sect. Our Nascent Soul grandmasters will certainly come out to clean up the sect. Senior Martial Brother Ren, even if you kill me, you can’t do anything to keep this matter secret!”
Upon hearing what he said, Mo Tiange, who was inside the Virtual Sky World, felt a bit relieved. At least Jiang Shanghang and Tang Fang managed to escape.
“Who said I wanted to keep this matter secret?” Ren Yufeng cast him a contemptuous gaze. “I’ll close the entrance to the underground palace in a moment. When I’ve finished absorbing the entire divine dragon’s breath, what could those Nascent Soul grandmasters do to me?”
“…” Qiu Zhiming was rendered speechless. He never expected Ren Yufeng would actually have such confidence in his own strength.
Ren Yufeng extended his hand, which allowed a cloud of black aura to emerge again. As he played with that black aura, he looked Qiu Zhiming up and down; it was as if he was considering where he should attack from.
His current actions made Qiu Zhiming turn increasingly pale. His body even began to tremble violently.
But Ren Yufeng didn’t throw that black aura at him. After remaining still for a long time, he eventually sighed. “Junior Martial Brother Qiu, I really don’t want to kill you so quickly. I wouldn’t have anyone to talk to if I killed you.”
Qiu Zhiming’s face brightened up instantly once he heard what Ren Yufeng said. “Senior Martial Brother Ren, spare me—please just spare me! I promise I’ll listen to you; at least I can keep you company.”
Ren Yufeng’s expression didn’t change. It didn’t seem like he intended to let Qiu Zhiming go, but it also didn’t seem like he’d kill Qiu Zhiming immediately. In the end, he still took back the black aura in his hand and said, “Forget it; I’ll spare you for now. However, don’t feel happy so early. I’m just sparing your life for the time being. When I want to kill you, you’ll still have to die!”
Although this was only temporary, Qiu Zhiming still felt greatly relieved and grateful. He said, “Thank you for not killing me, Senior Martial Brother Ren! Thank you, Senior Martial Brother Ren…”
Ren Yufeng waved his hand then said coldly, “I’m going to close the underground palace entrance; deal with the woman’s corpse!” Finally, he added a warning: “If you try to do anything funny, I’ll immediately take your life!”
Qiu Zhiming naturally promised him again and again that he wouldn’t, and Ren Yufeng finally turned around and walked away.
Once Ren Yufeng disappeared from his line of sight, the smile on Qiu Zhiming’s face faded. He fell on the ground, looking completely lifeless. For a while, he just sat like that with a stiff expression as if he still couldn’t come to terms with his change of status. He continued to think until all of a sudden, he leaned on his legs and burst into tears.
This tall, robust man had curled up and bawled his eyes out… She really didn’t know whether this scene was ridiculous or pitiful. Qiu Zhiming was obviously very innocent. In fact, he really didn’t do anything wrong. It could even be said that he got caught by Ren Yufeng most likely because he took the injured Yu Xiaoran with him when he ran. Right now, the only ones who managed to escape were Jiang Shanghang and Tang Fang while Qiu Zhiming and Xiahou Yuan were caught—Yu Xiaoran was most likely dead already, and Qiu Zhiming himself probably couldn’t escape from this calamity.
How much better was surviving temporarily compared to dying immediately? This place was an underwater underground palace, and the landscape of the Land of Hiding Dragon changed every year, so the landscape from the previous year wouldn’t last until the next year—who knew where they would be next year? Not to mention what’d happen next year, but even now, who knew when Ren Yufeng would suddenly be in a bad mood and want to kill him? Even if Ren Yufeng didn’t kill him, they were underwater. Foundation Building cultivators still didn’t have the ability to create waterproof enchantments on their own; even if he could survive underwater, it would only be for a limited time. The effects of one Bubble Fruit could only last for a day, and he only had several dozens of them at most. He would soon run out of them and at that point, he’d still have to die…
The more Qiu Zhiming thought about his situation, the more aggrieved he became, so he simply cried to his heart’s content.
Mo Tiange was watching the crumpled man quietly, doing nothing to help.
She could use this moment to knock Qiu Zhiming out and bring him into the Virtual Sky World, but if Qiu Zhiming went missing when there was only one passage in this underground palace, what would she do when Ren Yufeng became suspicious? After all, she didn’t have any idea what kind of ability Ren Yufeng possessed now that he obtained the divine dragon’s breath. Besides, Qiu Zhiming was so weak. Even if she saved him, his willpower had already fallen apart, so he definitely wouldn’t have any future.
Qiu Zhiming didn’t have the slightest idea that during this short moment, he just brushed past his way out of this calamity. After crying for some time, he seemed to have sensed something, so he immediately stood up and started dealing with Xiahou Yuan’s corpse. After being covered by the black aura for so long, the waterproof enchantment on Xiahou Yuan’s body had long been destroyed and just like that, her body was filled with water, practically drowning her to death.
Just as Qiu Zhiming used his Dantian Real Fire to burn Xiahou Yuan’s corpse, Ren Yufeng walked into the hall. He seemed very satisfied that Qiu Zhiming was doing what he was told, so he directly made his way towards the stone platform next to the square and sat cross-legged without saying anything.
This stone platform was where the dragon’s foot was, so when Ren Yufeng sat, he sat on the dragon’s metacarpal bones.
He seemed to be regulating his breath. Mo Tiange saw the black aura on his body raging. Gradually, the divine dragon’s breath lingering on the dragon bones also headed towards him.
Qiu Zhiming was watching this scene with astonishment. He was already completely intimidated by Ren Yufeng’s means of doing things, so he didn’t dare to do anything else now.
But Mo Tiange was different from him. She cautiously examined every little detail that occurred when Ren Yufeng was cultivating. It made absolutely no sense that the divine dragon’s breath could produce devil aura—perhaps she could find the answer to this problem from the series of events that occurred when Ren Yufeng was cultivating.
After watching for a long time, Mo Tiange’s gaze suddenly brightened.
She discovered something: Ren Yufeng seemed to be absorbing divine dragon’s breath, but the breath only flowed towards him—the divine dragon’s breath on the dragon bones didn’t decrease in the slightest! What did this mean? This meant that the breath on Ren Yufeng’s body wasn’t divine dragon’s breath!
But if it wasn’t divine dragon’s breath, what was it? Mo Tiange really couldn’t understand. She thought for a long time, but the only thing she was certain was that the so-called divine dragon secret technique Ren Yufeng had, which he thought could turn him into a descendent of the divine dragons, was either simply a fake or completely wrong!
If the method he used to absorb the divine dragon’s breath was wrong, what was going on now?
There was no clue whatsoever to these problems, so Mo Tiange could only grudgingly give them up for the time being. Rather than thinking about those problems, she better think about what she should do next.
Although she was naturally safe inside the Virtual Sky World, safety was all she had here—she couldn’t remain there her whole life. Of course, inside the Virtual Sky World, she could use all kinds of spiritual panacea and cultivate slowly. However, if her mental state didn’t progress, the dangers during realm-breakthrough would be too great; she might take a very long time before she could grow strong enough to fight Ren Yufeng. Moreover, what if Ren Yufeng’s evil technique also allowed him to advance to the next realm very quickly?
Mo Tiange sat inside the small hut in the Virtual Sky World and racked her brain for a long time when she suddenly became enlightened. Right! How could she forget about it? Ren Yufeng pledged a Heart Demon’s Oath to her, vowing that he would let her leave safely!
Nevertheless, this thought only flitted by, and Mo Tiange once again felt disappointed. For cultivators from the Righteous Path, a Heart Demon’s Oath was a very important oath because Inner Demons were the biggest obstacle they could face during their realm-breakthroughs. The cultivators from the Devil Path, on the other hand, weren’t restricted by Inner Demons. If Ren Yufeng had indeed turned into a devil cultivator, Inner Demons simply wouldn’t play any role in his eyes because devil cultivators didn’t encounter Inner Demons during their realm-breakthroughs.
Now she was back to square one—how could she leave?
In the end, Mo Tiange heaved a sigh then thought out loud: “Forget it; just think of this as being in Closed Door Meditation. Maybe before several dozen years pass, Ren Yufeng will have an accident during his cultivation. At that time…”
Just as she was engrossed in her own thoughts, she suddenly heard a loud sound from outside. Soon after, Qiu Zhiming’s panic-filled voice rang out: “Senior Martial Brother Ren, are you alright?”
Mo Tiange looked up and saw that Ren Yufeng already ended his cultivation. Right now, he was sitting on the high platform, looking completely gloomy. As for Qiu Zhiming, he was sprawled on the ground not too far away with traces of blood on the corners of his mouth. It seemed… he was flung away by Ren Yufeng.
Ren Yufeng cast him a contemptuous glance. “What? Were you hoping for a mistake to occur while I cultivated?”
Upon catching the murderous intent hidden within his question, Qiu Zhiming instantly shook his head. “Of course not. I was just worried…”
“Worried about me?” Ren Yufeng sneered, “It’d be a wonder if you really worried about me! You can survive only if something happens to me, right?!”
Qiu Zhiming didn’t refute him. He just hung his head down silently.
Ren Yufeng “hmphed” then said, “Stop daydreaming! I won’t die, and don’t expect those old codgers will come to save you—this underground palace cannot be opened without the designated technique. We entered this underground palace only because the divine dragon’s breath inside was drawn by the divine dragon monument outside, thus opening the entrance to this palace. Right now, only the divine dragon’s breath on these dragon bones remain, so those old codgers definitely cannot come in!”
Once he finished talking, Ren Yufeng stood up then walked down the platform. “It’s really a pity that Ye Xiaotian from Xuanqing School escaped! That woman has a lot of treasures. How good it would’ve been if I could snatch them away…”
Qiu Zhiming raised his head then said somewhat hesitatingly, “That Junior Martial Sister Ye…” He suddenly stopped, seemingly undecided whether he should tell Ren Yufeng or not.
“What?” Ren Yufeng turned his head to glance at him. “Just speak if you have something to say!”
Since Ren Yufeng made the order, Qiu Zhiming immediately said, “I didn’t see Junior Martial Sister Ye leaving. Us Zhengfa Sect cultivators used Fleeing Water Technique underwater, so our speed was naturally much faster than hers. It wouldn’t make sense that she could escape faster than me.”
Ren Yufeng pursed his lips. “Naive! That Ye Xiaotian has a lot of treasures; who knows whether or not she has something that would’ve allowed her to escape?” He paused to heave a sigh before continuing on: “Not only does she have a lot of treasures, but her cultivation level is also high, and her age… According to my estimates, her age isn’t more than eighty years old; I’m afraid she might be even younger than that.”
Qiu Zhiming didn’t understand what he meant, so he just stared at Ren Yufeng in bewilderment.
Ren Yufeng’s brows were wrinkled in his impatience. “You’re really stupid! Do you remember how old Jiang Shuihan is? I think he’s about fifty years old, isn’t he? That Ye Xioatian’s cultivation level is obviously higher than his now, but he’s still calling her ‘Junior Martial Sister Ye’—it clearly shows that Ye Xiaotian is still younger than him!”
Jiang Shuihan was Jiang Shanghang’s current name. Mo Tiange thought that despite his grotesque temperament and cruel character, this Ren Yufeng was unexpectedly not stupid. He actually thought of a way to guess her age.
Ren Yufeng’s explanation made Qiu Zhiming’s jaws drop. He said, “Less than fifty years old? This… but Junior Martial Sister Ye’s already in the peak of the middle stage of the Foundation Building realm! She most likely went out to get field experience to breakthrough to the late stage. If she succeeds, wouldn’t she be…”
Reaching the late stage of the Foundation Building realm at fifty years old was indeed rather astonishing. It was a feat that even so-called geniuses rarely achieved.
Ren Yufeng “hmphed” again then said, “Naive! Don’t forget that she came from Xuanqing School! Nowadays, the strength of Xuanqing School doesn’t lose out to Tiandao Sect’s. If gives birth to one or two more Nascent Soul cultivators within the next hundred years, it’ll surpass Tiandao Sect and become the greatest cultivation group in the Celestial Pole! Unlike Tiandao Sect, which could have a lot of Nascent Soul cultivators because it has a lot of disciples, Xuanqing School’s famous for coming up with genius cultivators. The current late stage Nascent Soul cultivator, Lord Daoist Zhenyang, and the cultivator who made a realm-breakthrough two hundred years ago, Lord Daoist Miaoyi, both succeeded in forming their Nascent Soul when they were about two to three hundred years old. Among its Core Formation cultivators, it has cultivators like Master Daoist Lingxi and Master Daoist Shoujing, who formed their Gold Core when they were around a hundred years old and who have very high chances of advancing to the Nascent Soul realm when they’re about two hundred years old. Do you still think it’s impossible?”
“But…” Qiu Zhiming still felt puzzled. “Junior Martial Brother Jiang said that when they got acquainted, Junior Martial Sister Ye was an individual cultivator. Isn’t that kind of genius usually raised by their cultivation group from a young age?”
“Do you think those cultivation groups never mistakenly miss out on people?” Ren Yufeng’s expression was suffused with disdain. “The technique to measure spiritual roots among individual cultivators isn’t a complete one; maybe Junior Martial Sister Ye’s real aptitude wasn’t measured correctly. Besides, the fact that she was able to join Xuanqing School already shows that her skills aren’t poor. Xuanqing School isn’t like our Zhengfa Sect, which accepts every northernmost person who possesses spiritual roots; a big cultivation group like Xuanqing School is very selective even towards cultivators with three spiritual roots!”
Qiu Zhiming didn’t say anything. Although Ren Yufeng’s temperament wasn’t good, Qiu Zhiming admitted that he couldn’t compare to him in terms of intelligence. Moreover, whether Ye Xiaotian was a genius or not didn’t really have anything to do with him—it wasn’t like she was going to save him anyway.
“Ye Xiaotian is Lord Daoist Xuanyin’s disciple. Although he hadn’t yet formed his Nascent Soul when she worshiped him as her master, would a late stage Core Formation cultivator have accepted a disciple randomly? Furthermore, she herself said she hadn’t built her foundation when she joined Xuanqing School. She went from the Aura Refining realm to the middle stage of the Foundation Building ream within ten odd years… With this kind of cultivation speed, how could she possibly not be a genius?”
After a brief pause, Ren Yufeng shook his head then said with a sigh, “What a pity… It must be very good if I could get such a young middle stage female cultivator as my Human Furnace…” Apparently imagining some scenes, perverseness emerged in his gaze.
Inside the Virtual Sky World, Mo Tiange, who’d been watching this scene, slammed her hand on the table.
Ever since she entered Xuanqing School, she’d never met anyone who wanted to make her their Human Furnace! Human Furnace was originally a heretical practice, while Xuanqing School was an orthodox Dao School. Dao Schools encouraged their disciples to have pure hearts and few desires, so the principle of harvesting one to nurture the other wasn’t at all suitable for them—they would only permit Dual Cultivation at most. Besides, right after she joined the school, she immediately became Lord Daoist Jinghe’s registered disciple. There was really no one who dared to make her their Human Furnace—nobody would even dare to think about it!
Outside, Qiu Zhiming didn’t dare to say anything and just stared at Ren Yufeng fearfully.
Upon spending some time in his own fantasy, Ren Yufeng finally regained his train of thought. He shook his head regretfully and said, “I actually let her escape—hmph! I really want to taste what it’s like to humiliate this kind of extremely privileged person! But it’s not like there’s no chance in the future. Once I practice the divine dragon secret technique properly and my cultivation level progress greatly, I’ll go to Kunwu and temper myself. Maybe I’ll still run into her later! HAHAHAHA…”
Ren Yufeng’s arrogant look really made Mo Tiange, who was inside the Virtual Sky World, outraged.
Zhengfa Sect was also a Dao Sect, so it also didn’t encourage the principle of harvesting one to nurture the other. This Ren Yufeng just recently obtained a divine dragon secret technique, yet he was immediately this shameless—he most likely already had a very filthy mind in the past!
When she saw Ren Yufeng’s completely perverse smile then thought about how he might very well be having a fantasy about herself, Mo Tiange instantly got goosebumps all over her body. She really wanted to slap that abominable face of his then chop him into minced meat!
It was only after taking several deep breaths that her mind gradually calmed down, and she returned to her seat.
Thinking about this was useless; in order to kill Ren Yufeng, she had to plan properly beforehand. But in fact, it wasn’t like she had no advantages over Ren Yufeng.
First of all, inside the Virtual Sky World, she had medicinal pills to eat, and the spiritual aura was also very abundant—this was the perfect environment for her to cultivate in. She’d kept her cultivation from progressing for several years, so there would be no problem for her to try to advance to the late stage of the Foundation Building realm now. It was just that it’d be a bit dangerous if she wanted to try forming her Gold Core later, but the amount of danger was minimal; it didn’t mean she would have no chances of succeeding.
Secondly, the origin of Ren Yufeng’s cultivation technique was questionable. Who knew what the aftermath would be like? Cultivation techniques of the Devil Path were more likely to cause aura deviations, and Ren Yufeng had long entered a demonic barrier; maybe one day he’d have an accident when he practiced, and she could directly finish him off.
Lastly, she was inside the Virtual Sky World, and Ren Yufeng was completely unaware of her existence. She could always find an opportunity to ambush him!
Mo Tiange considered many things in her head. Eventually, she decided that until she had a better solution, she would just stay there and cultivate properly. She believed that when it came to simply playing a waiting game, Ren Yufeng wouldn’t be able to defeat her. Because she, who had taken a Longevity Pill before, had at least eight hundred years left in her lifespan!