Chapter 81 The Chronicles of Romance and Seduction
Ten years had passed by like a fleeting moment for the cultivators, lost in their secluded cultivation, oblivious to the passage of time. Seasons came and went, witnessing the blooming and withering of countless flowers. Yunxiao was now gearing up for the second Outer Peaks Grand Competition. A cloud crane gracefully soared amidst the colorful clouds, delivering instructions to the seventy-two disciples of Outer Peaks.
The cloud crane descended onto the fingertips of a young girl with fair skin. The Traceless Fairy glanced at the sky, painted in shades of deep blue. The wind gently swayed the chimes hanging at the eaves, whispering to her that it was already spring, marking the tenth year since his seclusion.
The Shangyang Peak Master had closed himself off in seclusion, breaking through to the mid-stage of the Golden Core. All trivial matters were now under the responsibility of the future Peak Master, the Traceless Fairy.
She was now on her way to the sparring platform in the Purple Bamboo Forest, where she would observe the competition among the inner disciples and select fifty disciples for the second round.
Two female disciples accompanied her, engaging in casual conversations about their daily experiences.
“Guess who among us will qualify to enter the Inner Peaks this time?”
“I guess it’s Wang Hongbin. That young man can be considered a rising star. In the beginning, he remained unassuming and inconspicuous, but now he has begun to showcase his abilities. He has taken on numerous challenging missions from the Consulate Hall and successfully accomplished them all.”
“I thought Hu Jing might have a chance too. I heard she had already reached the Foundation Establishment Stage.”
“But we had a good number of disciples in the Foundation Establishment Stage in Shangyang Peak. Xu Jing, our Senior Brother, was one of them. But it seemed he didn’t take part in the selection.”
“Ah,” the round-faced female cultivator exclaimed softly, slightly taken aback. She glanced ahead and lowered her voice. “Isn’t that the same as Senior Sister Wu Heng? Why is that?”
The other female cultivator furrowed her brows “What’s the point of questioning? Some people are just not interested. Senior Brother Xu Jing had a relaxed and carefree nature. It seemed he didn’t prioritize fame, fortune, or matters of cultivation.”
The round-faced female cultivator nodded and then raised her head abruptly. “Did we forget someone?”
The other female cultivator remained silent.
They exchanged glances, both revealing complex emotions in their eyes.
He was also one of the top Outer Peaks disciples, and during the past ten years, he had gained immense popularity in Shangyang Peak.
The round-faced female cultivator said, “If we had known about his personality, I guess Senior Brother Pei wouldn’t have set up that father-son relationship to teach him a lesson ten years ago.”
The other female cultivator added, “Yes, it only made him more conceited. He kept boasting about being someone’s ‘son.’ I felt like smashing him to pieces.”
The round-faced female cultivator couldn’t help but laugh. “Didn’t Senior Sister Wu Heng make a move first? She casually framed him with a charge and sent him to the spiritual garden to work in the fields. Hahaha.”
The other person couldn’t hold back her amusement either. “He deserves it. Working in the fields suits him.”
“But he actually made a breakthrough to the Foundation Establishment Stage while working in the spiritual garden. It’s really… what luck.”
Although they spoke softly, the Traceless Fairy, with her higher cultivation level, could hear them clearly. She turned around and gave them a stern glare. “If you continue gossiping, each of you will copy the Sect Rules once.”
Yunxiao Sect Rules were simply a nightmare.
The two female cultivators immediately straightened their bodies, pretending to be innocent and pitiful. They exchanged teary-eyed glances and shook their heads.
Senior Sister Wu Heng is truly terrifying.
It should be said that women who have been hurt emotionally are truly terrifying.
The Outer Peaks Grand Competition was in full swing, but everyone knew that it wouldn’t be as exciting as the previous one.
The three of them left the main hall and headed towards the Purple Bamboo Forest on the cloud crane. Suddenly, in the distance, they spotted someone. The Traceless Fairy furrowed her brows slightly and stopped. The group of disciples were momentarily surprised, then they all orderly and simultaneously greeted, “Senior Brother Ji.”
Standing in front of the Purple Bamboo Forest was Ji Wuyou, the chubby boy who had intruded into Yunxiao during the rainy twilight. No one could have anticipated the changes he underwent in just ten years. Violet bamboo leaves fluttered and fell onto his deep purple robe, which was layered with white silk, exuding an unparalleled nobility. Under the bamboo crown, his black hair flowed like water. The once chubby youth had grown taller, revealing a handsome and resolute face. His temperament seemed to have changed significantly. Upon hearing their voices, he remained expressionless, nodded from a distance, and acknowledged them.
He was Senior Brother Pei’s personally chosen disciple, and no matter how shocked or unwilling they felt in their hearts, their outward mannerisms and respect would not diminish.
The Traceless Fairy asked, “Why has Senior Brother Ji come to Shangyang Peak?”
Ji Wuyou shifted his gaze slightly and replied, “I have returned from my travels outside and thought to visit this familiar place on the day of the Outer Peaks Grand Competition. You don’t need to worry about me.”
The disciples couldn’t help but feel a tinge of jealousy. Yes, this Senior Brother Ji was once one of them in Shangyang Peak. Back then, he was inconspicuous, even considered a pushover who endured everything. Who knew, through some unimaginable stroke of luck, he ended up becoming Senior Brother Pei’s disciple!
All thirty-six peaks, including Tianqian Peak, were the objects of their dreams.
The disciples’ jealousy was almost tangible.
The Traceless Fairy glanced lightly at them as a warning, then turned to Ji Wuyou and said, “We won’t disturb your peace, Senior Brother Ji. We will take our leave first.”
Ji Wuyou nodded in acknowledgement.
Once they were far away, on their crane ride, the two female cultivators could no longer hold back.
“Why didn’t I have his good fortune?”
“What did Senior Brother Pei see in him? Was it because he witnessed him being bullied in Shangyang Peak and felt pity? Ahh, if I had known about this, I would have spent some spiritual stones to hire a few people to slap me in front of Senior Brother Pei.”
The Traceless Fairy wanted to reprimand them, but upon hearing their words, she couldn’t help but laugh. It would be difficult to regain her authority once it dissipated, but deep down, she favored Pei Yuzhi. With a stern face, she said, “Have you said enough? Senior Brother Pei had his reasons for accepting him as his disciple.”
The round-faced cultivator continued to whine, “But he has been cultivating in Tianqian Peak for ten years and still hasn’t reached the Foundation Establishment stage.”
The Traceless Fairy replied, “That doesn’t give you the right to gossip behind his back.”
A gentle breeze dispersed their words, and drifting purple leaves passed through their fingertips. Ji Wuyou lowered his head and remained silent.
A little girl appeared on his shoulder, wearing a bright red robe, with a red flame mark between her eyebrows and pure black eyes devoid of pupils.
The little girl stuck out her tongue, her eyes displaying a coquettishness beyond her age. As she watched the Traceless Fairy’s figure, she said, “I quite like that woman’s face.”
Ji Wuyou’s eyes revealed disgust as he glanced at her and said, “I told you, inside Yunxiao, you are not allowed to harm anyone!”
The little girl only smiled at him, her pure black pupils devoid of expression.
“They called you a waste.”
Ji Wuyou said, “They didn’t.”
The little girl said, “But deep down, they’re calling you a waste. As the descendant of the Demon Lord, reduced to this state, aren’t you angry? Don’t you want to kill?”
The little girl laughed briefly, then fell silent. Her gaze seemed to drift towards the direction of Yunxiao’s highest peak. “Pei Yuzhi should have emerged from seclusion by now.”
The little girl grinned widely, her smile reaching her ears. “But he probably isn’t in Yunxiao anymore.” Her eyes flashed with a hint of malice and wickedness. “The formations outside Changji Peak are truly formidable. I couldn’t get close, not even a step, and even the Heavenly Tribulation couldn’t break through. It’s rare to witness the destruction of a Nascent Soul without any anomalies. Ji Wuyou, Ji Wuyou, with such powerful enemies who want to kill you, don’t you want to become stronger quickly?”
Ji Wuyou remained silent for a long time.
In the distance, three drum beats signaled the start of the competition. He lifted his gaze and looked at the towering 108 peaks amidst the ethereal sea of clouds. He recalled his initial and most foolish desire—to eat and drink enough to survive. Perhaps there was wickedness flowing in his blood, making his existence unwelcome in the world.
Perhaps… it wasn’t that the world rejected him, but rather that one person did, making it difficult for the world to resist.
In mid-spring, the flowers and willows began to sprout, leaving traces of green that spread over the snowy landscape. From afar, it seemed as if the white-headed mountains were covered in snow.
The wind carried a hint of chill, causing the tea houses and wine taverns to be filled with intoxicated wanderers and elegant guests from all corners of the world.
This is the city of Duanmai, located between the Qiantian Mountain Range and the mortal kingdom of Huan.
To the right lay the forbidden land of the Immortal Realm, the Qiantian Mountain Range. It was said that the range was filled with countless dangers, and anyone below the Nascent Soul stage who entered would perish. But despite this, people from all over the world flocked here, traveling far and wide, just to catch a glimpse of the mountain hidden amidst the vast sea of clouds at the center of the Qiantian Mountain Range.
After all, that mountain peak was even higher than Canghua’s Wentian Peak.
“Is it really taller than Wentian Peak?”
After finishing his drink, a burly and sturdy cultivator wiped his mouth and gazed deeply ahead.
Beside him was a gentle and charming female cultivator, with silky seductive eyes. She giggled and said, “How can one tell the difference in height? Wentian Peak is so high that its summit cannot be seen, and the same goes for this mountain. In my opinion, they are all about the same.”
A refined and elegant scholar-like cultivator, folding his fan, smiled and said, “It’s not that simple. There is still a distinction between the heights of these two mountains. By reaching the summit of both peaks and overlooking the mountains and rivers, one can form a judgment.”
The sturdy cultivator looked back at him, snorted, and disdainfully replied, “You speak so lightly, my friend.”
The righteous cultivator remained composed and smiled faintly, “The Trial of Challenging the Heavens will begin in forty years, and anyone under a thousand years old can participate. Why not give it a try? With some luck, you might make it into the top one hundred and ascend to Wentian Peak.”
The sturdy cultivator remained silent, but his eyes were wandering and contemplating.
The female cultivator next to him stifled a laugh behind her hand and said, “Top one hundred? Young Master is joking. Beyond the seas lie Yingzhou, and within the land stand Canghua, Shijia Temple, Fengqiu Mountain, and the Ghost Realm. They are all equally formidable. It’s not that easy.”
The disgruntled cultivator glanced at her but remained silent. After all, she spoke the truth.
The righteous cultivator grinned, his eyes narrowed, “Why not give it a try, Miss? The fifth on the Heavenly Ranking is the Fushang Fairy, who is also a woman, isn’t she?”
As the topic turned to the Trial of Challenging the Heavens, the people in the tea house became interested.
The cheerful owner of the tea house, wiping a vase with a cloth, laughed out loud, “The young hero speaks the truth! I’m starting to get interested myself.”
Her younger brother, busy calculating, rolled his eyes and retorted, “You? With just the cultivation of the third level of Qi Gathering, what are you going to do? Embarrass yourself?”
The tea house owner’s face turned serious as she wiped the vase vigorously, staring at him expressionlessly. She smiled mischievously, “Who said participating in the Trial requires winning a rank? Am I not allowed to test my luck and find myself a lover who is a celestial genius?”
Several people in the tea house spewed out their tea.
The younger brother was taken aback, his calculations thrown off, and his face twitched. He really didn’t want to acknowledge this sister of his.
The female cultivators in the world of cultivation tend to have carefree personalities. One of them, a young girl who seemed to be from Yingzhou based on her attire, laughed and said, “Sister’s idea is quite good. I also want to go and have a look. With so many men in the Trial of Challenging the Heavens, there must be some handsome and exceptional cultivators with unique tastes.”
The tea house owner wiped the vase clean and nodded, “That’s the logic.”
Her brother grumbled beside her, “If you fancy someone like that, it’s not called having unique taste, it’s called being blind.”
The tea house owner attempted to stuff the cloth in her hand into his mouth but he dodged it, looking disgusted.
She remained calm and said, “Well, there are always good-looking and blind people out there.”
The male cultivators in the tea house became intrigued.
They asked the tea house owner, “Do you have anyone in particular that you favor?”
The tea house owner feigned shyness, but her words shocked everyone, “Someone like Pei Yuzhi.”
After a moment of silence, the tea house erupted into laughter.
“The first on the Wentian Ranking?”
“Miss, your ambitions are quite grand.”
The female cultivator from Yingzhou rested her chin on her hands and smiled mischievously, “Miss, do you know about the Celestial Pavilion?”
The tea house owner shook her head.
The Yingzhou cultivator said, “No wonder. Miss, it seems like you might have paid your affections to the wrong person.”
The tea house owner asked, “Tell me more.”
The Yingzhou cultivator said, “In the Celestial Pavilion, there were two questionnaires that left a deep impression on me. One asked who would become the champion of the next Trial of Challenging the Heavens, and the other was about the scandalous love affair of Pei Yuzhi ten years ago. Countless disciples of Yunxiao can testify that after the emergence of the demonic god and a fierce battle, Pei Yuzhi… in front of everyone, kissed another man.”
The tea house owner nearly dropped her vase and swallowed hard. “Is that true?”
Many people in the tea house were already aware of the incident.
Ten years ago, countless female cultivators wept and countless male cultivators set off firecrackers and fireworks at the gates.
The Yingzhou cultivator continued, “Why would I lie to you? It seems that the person Pei Yuzhi fell for is not an ordinary individual either. He possessed profound cultivation and for some reason, he hid his identity within Yunxiao. Yunxiao disciples say that the young man named Chu Junyu, who was summoned to the peak, always appeared aloof and cold, keeping to himself and deterring others from approaching. On the other hand, Pei Yuzhi seemed to be quite popular when he was at the Outer Peaks, gaining the affections of many people — this is what Yunxiao disciples say. Initially, these two individuals had nothing to do with each other, but fate took a twist, and the Peak Master arranged for them to share a room. I suppose they gradually developed feelings for each other. You know, Chu Junyu is quite handsome.”
The Yingzhou cultivator continued, “I don’t know how they fell in love with each other, but it’s somewhat understandable when two equally attractive men share such a mutual affection.”
The tea house owner’s expression became complex, as she had experienced heartbreak ten years later.
The male cultivators couldn’t stand hearing praises about Pei Yuzhi, especially from the lips of a beauty, and two Qi Gathering wandering cultivators with no sect immediately voiced their opinions.
“What do you mean by mutual affection? I heard it was Pei Yuzhi’s unrequited love! Hah, not even ashamed!”
“Exactly! So what if he’s the first on the Wentian Ranking and the Sect Master of Yunxiao? Confessing his love for a wild man in front of everyone, huh!”
The Yingzhou cultivator glanced coldly, saying, “Luckily, there are no disciples of Yunxiao here, or you wouldn’t leave with all your limbs intact. So what if Pei Yuzhi likes men? He is a thousand times more outstanding than all of you combined, and the men he fancies are ten thousand times more exceptional than you.”
Everyone in the tea house could sense that this cultivator was probably at the early Golden Core stage, surpassing ninety percent of those present. They pursed their lips and dared not speak.
The Yingzhou cultivator continued, “I would actually like to meet Chu Junyu. After all, he’s the person Pei Yuzhi fancies.”
Silence fell among the crowd. The person Pei Yuzhi had feelings for was none other than the Yunxiao Sect Madam, just this title alone was enough to drop everyone’s jaws in astonishment.
The Yingzhou cultivator said, “I also caught a glimpse of Pei Yuzhi’s last words in the Celestial Pavilion. It seemed to be related to Tianyan City. Tianyan City… Could it be the one I’m thinking of?”
Seated two tables away from her was a middle-aged cultivator dressed in a mysterious black robe, exuding an equally unfathomable aura. Taking a sip of tea, he said, “There is only one Tianyan City in this world, but now it’s not so easy to enter.”
In the past ten years, the enigmatic and mysterious Tianyan City had become even more sinister and bloody.
The Yingzhou cultivator nodded, her hair cascading as she spoke, “That’s true. It seems you need an entry permit. However, if Pei Yuzhi wants to enter, he could force his way in.”
The cultivator in the black robe responded, “Not necessarily. If Pei Yuzhi forces his way in, he would be against all the evil scoundrels in the city.”
The Yingzhou cultivator smirked. “How did we end up talking about Tianyan City? That city where all the criminals gather, I would rather go out of my way to avoid it in this lifetime. Speaking of which, I used to think Pei Yuzhi and Emperor Feng Jin were a couple. Now that Emperor Feng Jin is single, I find it unfair. Heaven should arrange a gentle and kind girl for him.” She revealed her teeth, “Like someone such as myself.”
The crowd: “……”
No wonder she and the innkeeper had common topics to discuss.
A male cultivator from Fengqiu Mountain tugged at the corner of his mouth. “Forget it, Miss. I, as the Phoenix Emperor, am still young and have no intention of taking a spouse.”
The Yingzhou cultivator stuck out her tongue.
The male cultivators were interested in hearing about Pei Yuzhi, but not his romantic affairs.
Even if it was about romance, they always wanted to find a negative angle.
“Pei Yuzhi poured out his heart and offered kisses, but in the end, he ran away. I bet even if he goes to Tianyan City, it won’t make a difference. Hahaha.”
“Exactly! Ten years ago, the female cultivators in our sect were so heartbroken, it brought me great joy! It would be entertaining if Pei Yuzhi couldn’t get what he desires.”
“Heaven has given him so much. It’s only fair to take some back, hehe.”
One flamboyantly dressed male cultivator spoke up quietly.
“…Am I the only one who cares if he’s homosexual? If I could become the Yunxiao Sect Master’s Madam and possess all the resources in the world, I would gladly do it!”
The male cultivators: “……” They wanted to curse him and tell him to go away, but when they thought about the position of being the leader of the Yunxiao Sect and Pei Yuzhi’s elegance, they fell silent.
It seemed to make some sense.
The second floor of the teahouse.
Pei Jing, who had to climb the Institute of Celestial Ascension on foot according to the rules set by Grandmaster Xuhan, held a teacup in his slender, pale hands, gazing at the tea for a long time.
Chen Xu struggled to hold back his laughter. “I think they have a point. If you go to Tianyan City, how certain are you that you can find Chu Junyu?”
He took a sip, finishing the tea in one gulp.
The young man in white exuded an air of distant elegance, like snow on a distant mountain. “One hundred percent certain. We are deeply in love with each other. You understand nothing.”
Chen Xu: “Come on, even I can see through your act. Do you have any idea how cowardly you are in front of Chu Junyu?”
Pei Jing smiled faintly. After breaking through the Nascent Soul stage, the young man’s aura became even more mysterious and cold.
He set down the cup and glanced at Chen Xu.
He silently repeated in his mind.
I’m not angry.
I’m not angry.
I will hold no grudges.
Chen Xu continued teasing, “It won’t work, your Big Brother is so powerful, can you measure up?”
Pei Jing: …
Chen Xu was drenched in tea, quietly wiping it off, grinding his teeth, “You promised to have a good temper after seclusion. I believed in your nonsense!”
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