The Sword Named No Way Out Chapter 80

Chapter 80

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Gong Wei’s front paws were pulled by Ying Kai, while his hind paws were gripped by Xu Shuangce. With round, black eyes, he looked up at the Ghost Crown Prince above his head and let out two soft and delicate calls. Then, a slightly immature but clear and calm voice echoed in the air:

“What are you planning to do?”

The Ghost Crown Prince smiled, “Nothing much, just offering a small gift for the future immortals. The aura of this cultivator on you seems quite heavy, doesn’t it?”

The little fox had slept by Xu Bai’s side for most of the night, naturally absorbing the faint sandalwood scent from his fur. Gong Wei saw the Ghost Crown Prince’s interested gaze shift to Xu Shuangce and couldn’t help but feel uneasy.

The Ghost Crown Prince reached out towards Xu Shuangce’s forehead, saying, “Such a dao heart is indeed rare…”

At this moment, the tug-of-war finally reached a conclusion. Ying Kai angrily exclaimed, “Let go! You’re hurting it!”

Xu Shuangce instinctively let go, and Gong Wei’s hind legs plopped back onto the pillow, before being picked up by Ying Kai.

Xu Shuangce reacted and reached out, “Give it back to me!”

—Many years later, Gong Wei would wonder why he acted as he did at that moment. But at that instant, he didn’t have time to think. All his reactions were instinctual.

Seeing Xu Shuangce about to snatch back the little fox, Gong Wei instinctively dodged in front of the Ghost Crown Prince and ended up in Ying Kai’s arms.

The Ghost Crown Prince chuckled softly, unsurprised, “I guessed that this type of person would better fit the hypocritical standards of the Heavenly Dao. Seems I was right.”

He redirected his hand, originally aimed at Xu Shuangce, towards Ying Kai’s forehead, and a pale silver halo entered Ying Kai’s spiritual sea!

Gong Wei exclaimed, “What did you give him?”

“Don’t worry,” the Ghost Crown Prince said casually, “I see that this cultivator seems inherently good-natured, so I’ve granted him the purest and most virtuous morality. From now on, he will engage in even more rigorous cultivation and is sure to ascend soon.”

Gong Wei couldn’t believe what he was hearing and asked, puzzled, “You…?”

The Ghost Crown Prince looked down at him with a sweet smile, sending a shiver down his spine, “I’ll be waiting.”

He turned and disappeared into the dark void.

Ying Kai was unaware of everything, scolding while holding Gong Wei, “Look, it’s scared! I’m going to release it back to Qingqiu. You can’t harm such a small creature!”

Xu Shuangce stared at the little fox in Ying Kai’s arms, his eyes widening slightly. If one observed closely, it seemed to be an expression of disbelief, disappointment, and astonishment. But then he pursed his lips and turned away, leaving only a cold back, no longer speaking.

No one saw that Gong Wei’s soul had already separated from his body, and the crimson-robed youth appeared in mid-air, reaching into Ying Kai’s spiritual sea. To his surprise, he found that the Ghost Crown Prince hadn’t lied.

He had indeed granted Ying Kai a purer, more perfect sense of morality, and because it aligned with Ying Kai’s original nature, it had completely merged into his spiritual sea and couldn’t be torn out.

But Gong Wei didn’t understand why Qu Xie had suddenly been so kind?

The little fox was dumbfoundedly carried out of the room by Ying Kai. After walking a few steps on Cangyang Mountain, Ying Kai was about to fly directly to Qingqiu. Suddenly, Gong Wei in his arms reacted, wiggling out and darting back to Xu Shuangce’s house like a red lightning bolt. Ying Kai didn’t have time to turn around and catch him, only to see him jump onto the windowsill and slip back into the room through the crack in the window.

“Hey! You—” 

Gong Wei jumped onto the bed, nudging Xu Shuangce’s chin with his head to indicate that he had returned.

In the next moment, he suddenly felt dizzy, grabbed by Xu Shuangce, and pulled into his arms. Then, the youth stood up, cast a sealing spell on the doors and windows, and locked the anxious Ying Kai outside.

The two looked at each other, and Gong Wei placed his front paws on Xu Shuangce’s chest, tilting his head to look at him.

“…” For a long time, Xu Shuangce whispered, “Grow up to become a mattress.”

Then, he placed the little fox on the soft pillow beside him, didn’t tie the rope around it again, and held its narrow back in one hand, before extinguishing the lamp and closing his eyes.

From that day on, the little fox Gong Wei stayed at Cangyang Sect.

The main reason he stayed was actually to guard against the Ghost Crown Prince and to observe any changes in Ying Kai. However, unexpectedly, the Ghost Crown Prince never came again, seemingly losing interest in the two young cultivators. Ying Kai also didn’t show any immediate signs of abnormality. He remained diligent and hardworking, advancing quickly in cultivation. His demands on himself were as strict as those of a sage, in stark contrast to Xu Shuangce, who seemed indifferent to everything.

Gong Wei’s actions remained the same as before he arrived at Cangyang Sect. He often wandered the world in his spiritual form, meditating and immersing herself in the myriad forms of life. But whenever he sensed that Xu Shuangce was summoning a plate of braised chicken, he would immediately return to his fox body, prop his front paws on Xu Shuangce’s arm, and eat the tender, juicy chicken, his mouth covered in sauce. Then, Xu Shuangce would carefully wipe his mouth clean before carrying him to bed.

One time, probably when an outer disciple served the meal and the braised chicken was finished, Xu Shuangce summoned a large plate of saliva chicken. He stared at the bright red chili oil, a faint crease forming on his forehead, but before he could dismiss the chicken, Gong Wei, who was lying on his knee, suddenly bristled all over, forcefully leaning his mouth into the plate, unstoppable even by Xu Shuangce’s hand.

“…” Xu Shuangce asked, “Can you eat this?”

Gong Wei nodded vigorously.

After a long silence, Xu Shuangce, unusually, repeated his question, “Are you sure?”

Gong Wei eagerly rubbed his head against Xu Shuangce’s face, his soft pointed ears brushing against the boy’s lips.

Xu Shuangce immediately turned his head away, his cheeks seemingly flushing a bit, and softly scolded, “Sit properly!”

That day, Gong Wei ate almost half of the plate of chicken. That night, he laid on the pillow, panting with his bright red, steaming tongue out, his ears drooping, and his fluffy tail wagging lazily.

Xu Shuangce read a book with one hand while stroking his smooth fur with the other, making a one-word cold assessment of this behavior: “Deserved.”

Gong Wei: “…”

“In the future, when you transform into a human, you can try various flavors,” Xu Shuangce’s eyes remained on the book, but after a while, his gaze drifted away unnaturally, and he said, “When you transform into a human… don’t rub against people like that anymore.”

Gong Wei: “?”

The little fox looked up at Xu Shuangce’s face in the candlelight, feeling somewhat puzzled, and blinked.

Time passed day by day, year by year, and leaving the body of a little fox at Cangyang Sect seemed to become Gong Wei’s habit. His spiritual energy often returned to check on Ying Kai’s gradual growth into a respected grandmaster and to see that Xu Shuangce still maintained his aloof and cold demeanor. It wasn’t until they both almost simultaneously broke through the realm of Immortalization.

That year, a major event occurred at Cangyang Sect—the sect leader passed away.

With the sect leader’s passing, according to the rules of the sect, Ying Kai should have succeeded him. However, Ying Kai was still young, so according to the rules of the sect, the major affairs were handled by the various elders until Ying Kai matured a bit more, at which point he would receive the sect leader’s title and all authority.

This was just the usual procedure, nothing extraordinary. The real key lay in—the passing of the sect leader left the title of the top cultivator in the world vacant, and a decision had to be made between Ying Kai and Xu Shuangce.

This was the truth that everyone in the world was secretly anticipating.

Xu Shuangce was young and rebellious, often speaking sharp words that cut deep, yet his cultivation was profound and he had never suffered a defeat. If such a person were to be defeated all of a sudden, what expression would he have in public?

Although Ying Kai was widely respected, people never stopped prying into his private life. If the future sect leader were to be defeated by someone from his own sect, how embarrassing and exciting would that scene be?

Despite the various discussions outside, Gong Wei had long known the outcome—Xu Shuangce’s cultivation was half a step higher than Ying Kai’s.

This half-step might not seem like much to a grandmaster of the Immortalization realm; it was merely a difference of ten or eleven steps away from reaching the pinnacle of ascension. But to the world, it seemed like a significant matter, passionately discussed and eagerly anticipated, to the extent that even closing the doors couldn’t completely block out the ubiquitous whispers.

In the gaze of everyone in the world, Xu Shuangce was smoothly defeated.

That night, Gong Wei rushed back to Cangyang Mountain, quietly lying in Xu Shuangce’s arms, watching as the cold moon gradually passed overhead. The moonlight reflected off the green stones of the corridor, and Xu Shuangce combed Gong Wei’s fur with one hand, lost in thought for a long time before whispering softly, “It was intentional.”

Gong Wei was not surprised, and he turned over in his arms.

“For these years, Ying Kai has been held too high. He wants to come down, but he’s shackled up there. People love to hear the sound of high-ranking individuals crashing down to the ground. If Ying Kai slips, everyone will want to push him down.”

Xu Shuangce paused for a moment, speaking to himself, “….But is what I’m doing right or wrong?”

For the first time, Gong Wei heard such self-doubtful words from Xu Shuangce, and he looked at him with some astonishment.

The night breeze brushed past the corridor, lifting the hem of his robe and gently covering the little fox’s body.

After a long while, Xu Shuangce lowered his eyes, his gaze rational and clear: “Regardless of whether it’s right or wrong, I shouldn’t stay at Cangyang Sect from now on.”

Xu Shuangce firmly refused Ying Kai’s persuasion and began to wander down the mountain, his whereabouts uncertain.

For several years after that, he deliberately avoided appearing in the same place as Ying Kai, minimizing the chances for people to compare them, and refrained from displaying his full cultivation in any situation. The controversy and turmoil over the title of the world’s top cultivator gradually subsided several years later. By then, Xu Shuangce’s footsteps had traversed famous mountains and rivers. When he walked along the riverbank, Gong Wei squatted on his shoulder, his big red tail tightly wrapped around Xu Shuangce’s neck. When he flew with his sword, Gong Wei laid in his robe, poking half of his head out from the collar, his two pointed ears swaying with the wind.

One year in late spring, Xu Shuangce passed by a mountain temple. While the earthly blossoms had faded, the peach blossoms here were in full bloom. Gong Wei seemed to enjoy peach trees, lying contentedly on the branches. Xu Shuangce, feeling whimsical, made a soft nest out of peach blossoms and placed Gong Wei inside, watching him sit dignifiedly with his plush tail curled by his front paws.

Xu Shuangce said, “Let’s just call you Little Peach.”

Little Fox had never had a name before, perhaps because Xu Shuangce only had him, unique and singular, and didn’t need to give him any designation.

However, after a moment’s pause, Xu Shuangce rejected the new name himself, saying, “No, it’s not appropriate. It’s too girly. You’re obviously a male fox.”

In fact, Gong Wei had no preference; whether in male or female form, it was just superficial. However, the first time he saw them, both young cultivators were male, so naturally, he transformed into a little male fox.

He glanced at Xu Shuangce and thought to himself that he could still transform into a female fox if Xu Shuangce wanted. After all, wasn’t it just a physical shell?

However, Xu Shuangce looked at him, the corners of his mouth slightly lifting as he plucked a peach petal and placed it on Gong Wei’s nose. “Forget it. Whether we name you or not, it’s just you and me. Let’s talk about it after you transform into a human.”

However, the fox body that Gong Wei casually transformed into had mediocre qualifications. He hadn’t even formed a demon core, let alone transform. Apart from eating chicken as he pleased, he had no other desires, nor did he have any intention of diligently cultivating.

Xu Shuangce didn’t urge him and continued to travel the world with him, sometimes slaying demons, sometimes practicing seclusion. Years passed in the blink of an eye.

Every few months, Gong Wei would split his soul to return and check on Ying Kai. Ying Kai was still gentle, refined, always accommodating, and widely respected. But for some reason, he always felt that Ying Kai was not actually happy and didn’t want to smile at people. Behind his bright eyes hid deep, inexplicable exhaustion.

Sometimes Xu Shuangce would write to Ying Kai, but Ying Kai rarely replied. Even if he did, it was just a few hurried lines. Anyone else would think it was because of the busy affairs of the sect. However, only Gong Wei knew that whenever Ying Kai opened the letter late at night, there would be a pain and confusion in his eyes that even he himself couldn’t perceive.

At that moment, he seemed to return to his youth, not the young Ying Kai who sneaked in through the window to rescue the little fox late at night, but the young successor who, after receiving the guidance and encouragement of his master, turned his head towards the direction where Xu Shuangce was leaving, full of envy yet unable to express it.

If it weren’t for that war, Gong Wei might have had more time to think and respond slowly, even trying to forcibly change Ying Kai’s fate.

But the outbreak of the war overnight changed everything—two great nations upstream and downstream of the river had been at war for a long time, and now suddenly encountered a decisive battle on the plains. Overnight, more than three hundred thousand people were killed and wounded, corpses littered the fields, and blood flowed like rivers.

The previously deadlocked situation suddenly tilted in favor of the victorious country upstream, while the defeated country downstream faced internal and external difficulties, teetering on the brink of collapse.

Such a great upheaval in reality would lead to drastic changes in karma between heaven and earth. The heavens would have to reckon the merits of the dead, and the Guiyuan would have to reincarnate a large number of souls. Gong Wei had to spend a lot of spiritual energy shuttling between the heavenly realm and the Guiyuan, often neglecting the little fox body by Xu Shuangce’s side.

One late night, as he descended from the heavenly realm to the mortal world, he suddenly remembered that he hadn’t been by Xu Shuangce’s side for some time. His spiritual essence swiftly returned to the body of the little fox. Opening his eyes, he felt Xu Shuangce holding him on his knees. Outside the window, the night rain was bleak, the candle flickered on the desk, and there was a plate of cooled braised chicken by the side. 

“Why have you been so listless lately?” Xu Shuangce murmured softly, his brow involuntarily furrowing. “You’re clearly not sick.” 

Gong Wei whimpered twice and nudged his palm with his head. 

He wanted to convey that he was fine, just a little tired. But the next moment, he was lifted up by Xu Shuangce. The familiar and pleasant scent of sandalwood enveloped him as Xu Shuangce buried his face in the fluffy fur around the little fox’s neck, his breath gently brushing against the warm and smooth fur. 

“After all these years, you’re still so small. You must be a nine-tailed fox with a very long juvenile period.” 

The little fox wagged its fluffy tail, finding it quite amusing. He thought Xu Bai must be confused. Although it was true that the juvenile period of a nine-tailed fox was longer than that of an ordinary fox, the small fox he had transformed into had mediocre aptitude. It was a miracle that he had lived for so many years. There was nothing resembling a powerful nine-tailed fox about him. 

“….So,” Xu Shuangce took a deep breath, his voice husky as he whispered softly, “you must be able to continue staying by my side for a long time.” 

Gong Wei suddenly quieted down, then whimpered gently, indicating his agreement.

Yes, the little fox could still accompany you for a long time, until the day you ascend.

However, the situation in reality soon exceeded Gong Wei’s expectations.

After the battle on the plains, although the downstream defeated country was on the brink of collapse, it managed to hold on, unable to be defeated for a while. In order to win as soon as possible, the victorious country upstream sent people to secretly breach the downstream dam. With days of heavy rain, it was on the verge of breaking.

Once the river broke, it would trigger a catastrophic flood rarely seen in a hundred years, causing inevitable heavy casualties in the downstream country.

The great karma between heaven and earth would have to be reshuffled once again.

Since being born from the Dao, Gong Wei encountered such a large natural disaster for the first time, and he was immediately overwhelmed. He had to learn to control the flooding with his divine power, remove those who shouldn’t die from the future flood in the great karma, and suppress the demons from spreading too much plague. He was busy every day, and even had to look after the three hundred thousand souls who died in battle. His divine power was stretched thin.

Every time he returned to the body of the little fox, he was extremely exhausted, unable to even call out. Xu Shuangce gently groomed his fur, his fingers sliding from the fox’s head down its spine to its tailbone, a massage that Gong Wei used to enjoy the most. But now, he could only weakly wag his tail.

Xu Shuangce also tried to infuse spiritual energy into Gong Wei, but no matter how much he infused, it was like pouring water into a sieve. He thought it was because the fox’s spiritual veins were blocked, but in reality, it was because Gong Wei’s divine power was too depleted. No matter how high his cultivation was before ascending, he couldn’t bridge that gap until he ascended.

“Don’t you want to eat?” Xu Shuangce tore off a piece of braised chicken leg and placed it in front of the fox’s moist nose, patiently asking.

The little fox just sniffed it, then weakly shook his head. A hint of sadness gradually welled up in Xu Shuangce’s eyes, but he just continued to stroke the fox’s soft body, saying nothing.

For some reason, every time Gong Wei saw Xu Shuangce like this, a similar sadness welled up from the bottom of his heart, as if his heart was being twisted with pain. He didn’t understand the reason, but he was reluctant to leave Xu Shuangce because of it. He just wanted to try to make this mortal happy, even if just a little bit.

The little fox whimpered and licked Xu Shuangce’s fingers, then picked up the piece of braised chicken in his hand and ate it, wagging his tail.


Xu Shuangce looked at him, a faintly sad smile appearing at the corner of his beautiful lips, a sadness that Gong Wei couldn’t understand.

The situation took a turn for the worse, and the moment of separation came unexpectedly.

The Ghost Crown Prince cast a spell to intensify the already violent rainfall, intending to submerge the entire Central Plains. Gong Wei intervened, and the two heavenly gods fought in the sky, lightning flashing and thunder roaring, the heavens and earth changing colors.

Gong Wei grew slowly, and at that time, he was still very young. He depleted his divine power to barely match the Ghost Crown Prince. The next day, the rain finally stopped a bit, and Qu Xie, disinterested, returned to the Guiyuan, while Gong Wei, exhausted, wandered between heaven and earth for a moment. Suddenly, he wanted to eat braised chicken, so he instantly returned in spirit, but the next moment, he solidly froze in midair.

Xu Shuangce had sat by the window all night, with the stiff, cold body of the little fox on his knee.

With his divine power exhausted from last night’s battle, he could no longer maintain this separate body, and it finally succumbed.

Xu Bai’s little fox died.

Xu Shuangce hadn’t closed his eyes for three days. Afterwards, he finally returned to Cangyang Mountain, burying the little fox where he had first brought it, and erected a small stone monument in front of the old house.

The drizzle continued, and Xu Shuangce stood in front of the monument for a long time, silently. Gong Wei, anxious and guilty, kept pacing back and forth in the void, sometimes tiptoeing in front of Xu Shuangce to look up at him, sometimes pulling at his sleeve by his side. After a while, he transformed into a little fox, agilely leaping onto Xu Shuangce’s shoulder, sitting in his usual position, rubbing his damp and cold cheeks in the light rain.

At this moment, footsteps sounded behind them. Ying Kai had arrived.

The future Patriarch of Cangyang didn’t use an umbrella either. He stepped forward and respectfully lit three sticks of incense, bowing deeply three times to the little fox’s grave before stepping back slightly, standing next to Xu Shuangce, sorrowfully gazing at the tombstone.

“Last month, when I saw that wisteria in the courtyard completely withered, I couldn’t help but wonder if the little fox was still okay. I never thought that when I finally saw it today, it had also passed away.”

The wisteria he mentioned was one he had planted himself when he was young, originally just a leisurely pastime without much importance. But now, it felt like losing something incredibly precious, something that could never be recovered.

Gong Wei comfortingly patted his shoulder with his tail.

Xu Shuangce hoarsely said, “Now I understand that there are indeed things in this world that are beyond our control.”


Ying Kai turned his head away, took several deep breaths, and then turned back with slightly red eyes, forcing a change of subject with a smile, “Did you hear the cries of the people at the foot of the mountain when we climbed up?”

Xu Shuangce responded coldly, “What? Are you suggesting you want to help with flood control?”

Ying Kai fell silent for a while, then struggled to say a few words, “I… I don’t know. I…”

“Ying Chenyuan, have you gone mad?” Xu Shuangce turned to stare at him, his tone unusually harsh, possibly because of the recent loss of the little fox. “Do I need to say it again for you to understand? This is a man-made disaster, not a natural one. Even if we want to help, we shouldn’t intervene like this. If you have so much spiritual power that you don’t know what to do with it, why not relocate these tens of thousands of disaster victims to the upstream area overnight? Why must you go and deal with the flood? Do you want to die?”

Ying Kai smiled bitterly in response, “Do you think they don’t know they can move upstream? What about their own homes? Their fields and property?”

Xu Shuangce seemed to find this amusing, “Why do you care so much? Do you have to fulfill every request?”

Ying Kai argued, “Did you not hear how they were shouting at the foot of the mountain…”

“Turning a blind eye to death is better than not saving pigs and dogs. So what if I heard it? If you are willing to help and accept the consequences, then there’s nothing more to say. But if you can’t bear the consequences, then why act? The war between the two countries is a great karmic cause and effect of heaven and earth, and neither you nor I can change it with our strength alone! Saving lives is already the limit! Moreover, the various schools of cultivation are closing their doors. Why are you the only one who can’t shut yours? Why are you the only one who lets yourself be influenced by the words of others?!”

Ying Kai roared angrily, “Is it my fault that I’m influenced by the words of others?!”

“Yes!” Xu Shuangce’s rebuke was even louder than his, “You shouldn’t listen to the words of others all the time. When will you understand this principle?!”


The two stared at each other, and after a moment, Ying Kai’s eyes were red, and he shook his head slowly, “I understand. I just can’t do it.”

A surge of anger rose within Xu Shuangce, and he turned to leave. Out of habit, he reached out to pick up the little fox, but his hand passed through the transparent body of Gong Wei – his little fox was no longer there.

A sharp pain pierced his brain like steel needles, and in that moment, Xu Shuangce lost his reason. “Fine! Then go and die!”

Gong Wei tried to cover Xu Shuangce’s mouth, but even if he materialized on the spot, it was too late.

As soon as the words fell, both of them were stunned for a moment. Xu Shuangce opened his mouth, but no sound came out.

Then, he closed his eyes and turned away.

“…Do you remember the competition for the title of the world’s number one back then?” However, before taking more than ten steps, Ying Kai’s voice sounded hoarse from behind.

As if he were holding back a sob, his voice trembled, and he said, “If I had lost back then, maybe everything could have been different.”

Xu Shuangce suddenly stopped in his tracks.

Ying Kai approached, bowed in front of the little fox’s tombstone, and placed a flower – a wisteria that had long since withered – before standing up and leaving. His steps were heavy, but he didn’t look back, leaving his youth forever behind him.

Xu Shuangce didn’t move, his hands trembling slightly within his sleeves.

It started raining heavily again that night. Xu Shuangce laid in the darkness, listening to the sound of rain tapping against the window, and at some point, he fell asleep without realizing it. In his dream, he saw a furry, fiery-red little fox circling around his feet, then reaching out its front paws as if to hug him. He bent down to embrace it tightly, but the fox suddenly turned into a young man in a deep red robe, hands behind his back, tilting his head, his eyes clear and smiling as he looked at him.

Xu Shuangce felt a pang in his throat, unable to speak. After a long while, he asked hoarsely, “Are you my little fox?”

The young man nodded lightly, “Yes.”

A sourness filled Xu Shuangce’s throat, unable to find words. After a long time, he asked again, “Did you come back to guide me on purpose?”

The young man nodded, his eyes flickering with encouragement. “Go! Ying Chenyuan is going to deal with the floods, but you’re going to save your friend.”

Something seemed to settle in Xu Shuangce’s heart, and a weight that had been hanging in mid-air finally fell to the ground. He looked at the young man in front of him, wanting to reach out and touch his delicate and beautiful face, but afraid that touching it would make everything disappear like a mirage. After a while, he finally trembled and said, “If… if I die, will I be able to see you again?”

He didn’t understand why, but when he heard this question, the young man smiled, his eyes seemingly filled with sparkling stars. Then, he stepped forward and gave him a tight hug.

A refreshing scent, like that of peach blossoms after the snow, filled the air. Xu Shuangce’s eyes widened in astonishment, and for a moment, he was stunned.

“The little fox will always be with you, whether in life or death,” he heard the soft laughter of the young man in his ear. “Because the little fox likes you.”

Then, the young man turned into countless crimson lights and disappeared, leaving only the lingering fragrance of peach blossoms.

The next day, the dam broke, and the floodwaters surged.

Ying Kai appeared above Lake Tai, exhausting his spiritual power to stop the rain and resist the flood, being engulfed by massive waves several times. In a critical moment, Xu Shuangce arrived, and together they enclosed the overflowing flood within Lake Tai, exhausting their energy and finally succeeding. 

Water surrounded them on all sides, an overwhelming deluge. Xu Shuangce was completely submerged by the surging flood, unable to muster any strength to struggle upwards. Finally, in the exhaustion of his golden core burning out, he closed his eyes, letting go and sinking into the endless abyss. 

I’m going to see my little fox, he thought. 

The next moment, a clear divine light shone from all directions, enveloping the entire Lake Tai. 

Xu Shuangce opened his eyes in astonishment and saw a little fox paddling with all its might, gracefully diving underwater. The round and bright eyes seemed to hold a smile. In the moment it extended its front paws to his palm, its form changed into the young man in the deep crimson robe from his dreams! 


Xu Shuangce widened his eyes in disbelief. The young man in the deep water tightly grasped his hand, interlocking their fingers without any gaps, and swiftly pulled him upwards, breaking through the surface of the water! 

Floating in the void, Xu Shuangce turned his head to see Ying Kai’s soul also half-kneeling on the ground, stunned and bewildered, watching the young divine figure before them. 

“My name is Gong Wei, Weixin’s wei, a mirror formed by the will of heaven.” 

The sky was covered in calamitous clouds, as if it were the end of the world. Yet, high above, a gate of heaven slowly opened, releasing layers of clear light, completely enveloping Gong Wei inside. His figure was both slender and delicate, yet exuded an inexplicable serenity and warmth: “Every time the gate of heaven opens, I descend to the mortal realm to reflect the souls of cultivators. If their merit is complete, I guide them to ascend to immortality; if there are doubts in their hearts, I send them to the guiyuan to reincarnate and be reborn in the next life.” 


At this moment, Xu Shuangce’s pale lips trembled, his gaze fixed on Gong Wei, his voice hoarse and trembling, “…Are you that little fox?” 

Gong Wei turned his gaze towards him, then smiled, like a soft, sweet dream that felt unreal. 

“Yes, I am your little fox.”

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