The wedding date of Shen Fugui and Cai Xunnian was set on the fifth day of the first month. Time was running out. Everyone was preparing for their marriage, and the end of the year passed simply.
On New Year’s Eve, Xiao Yuan and Gu Louyin were invited by Shen Qianyan to share the New Year’s Eve Dinner with Xuanle Sect and the others. Xiao Yuan noticed that many of the seats were empty and asked, “Who else will come?”
Shen Qianyan said, “Master Xiao will find out later.”
Xiao Yuan nodded lightly and didn’t ask further questions, holding Gu Louyin’s hand while sitting down. Upon seeing this, Cai Xunnian asked, “Is Master Xiao’s illness not healed yet?”
“It is,” Xiao Yuan said lazily, “but I’m too lazy to work hard, so I just want him to help me.”
That sounded unreasonable. Cai Xunnian looked at Gu Louyin. The silver-haired sword cultivator exuded a cold intent that meant ‘don’t look too closely unless you’re Xiao Yuan’. It made the others feel ashamed of their inferiority; there was only one person in the world who could do what he wanted to him.
After everyone sat at the table, they waited for a little more than half an hour, and the surprise guests arrived – Xiao Du and several guardians of Xingtian Sect.
Shen Qianyan and the others got up to greet them, and Gu Louyin also stood up, only Xiao Yuan remained sitting. Xiao Yuan thought about saving Xiao Du’s face in front of the outsiders and was about to get up when he heard Xiao Du say, “Ah Yu, sit down.”
Xiao Yuan sat back and asked, “Shouldn’t you guys come here the day after tomorrow?”
“It’s New Year’s Eve, who am I going to spend it with if not you?” Xiao Du looked at Xiao Yuan carefully, “Is Ah Yu a little thinner?”
Shen Fugui said, “He was sick for a few days a while ago.”
“Sick?” Xiao Du glanced at Gu Louyin, his expression vague, as if accusing, “What happened?”
“It’s not a big problem, I have recovered.“ Xiao Yuan didn’t see Mu Yingyang among the visitors, so he asked, “Where is my shidi?”
Xiao Du sat down beside Xiao Yuan, as if he hadn’t heard his question. Meng Chi said helplessly: “He came too, but he didn’t walk with us. You can count on him arriving later.”
“Then we won’t wait for him.” Xiao Yuan looked at Shen Qianyan, “Master Shen.”
Shen Qianyan nodded and said, “Start the banquet.”
Shen Qianyan was not talkative and the people of Xingtian Sect were not polite. The hosts and the guests ate their food, and the New Year’s Eve Dinner could barely be regarded as a happy meal for everyone.
During the meal, Meng Chi checked up Xiao Yuan and Gu Louyin and said in surprise: “You are recovering well and Master Gu’s heart demon can no longer be detected. It seems that the technique of exchanging hearts is very successful.”
“If that’s the case, why did Ah Yu get sick before?” Xiao Du said slowly, “I thought it was a sequelae of heart exchange. Now it seems that it is not?”
After a silence, Gu Louyin said, “My fault.”
Xiao Du said coolly: “When Ah Yu was by my side, he had never been sick.”
Xiao Yuan chuckled, “Ge, how dare you, how dare you say such things.”
Xiao Du: “…”
“I just had a bit of backache and laid in bed for a few days.” Xiao Yuan said, “It had nothing to do with Gu Louyin.”
Gu Louyin said, “It is related.”
Xiao Du narrowed his eyes dangerously. Meng Chi said meaningfully: “Backache…”
At this time, Fang Baichu, who always chose the worst time to speak up, once again showed his talent: “Speaking about that, how did Master Gu spend the fifteenth of the last month? You don’t have the antidote, do you?”
Xiao Yuan said calmly: “No, so this matter is in your hands.”
Fang Baichu looked blank, “What matter?”
“Finding the antidote.” Xiao Yuan said with a smile, “Before the fifteenth of next month, please be sure to make a new antidote. If you can’t, keep your mouth shut for the rest of your life.”
Fang Baichu wailed and Meng Chi laughed and said he deserved it. The atmosphere gradually became lively. Xiao Du downed a cup of strong wine, his mouth feeling bitter and astringent.
The banquet was over and the people dispersed. Amidst the sound of firecrackers, Xiao Yuan walked back with Gu Louyin, slightly drunk.
Xiao Yuan’s footsteps were a bit uncertain and he didn’t walk very steadily. He was still conscious and deliberately leaned on Gu Louyin. Gu Louyin also drank a little wine, having a faint scent of alcohol on his body.
Gu Louyin put his arm around his waist and asked, “Carry you?”
Xiao Yuan said hypocritically: “That’s not good, what if someone sees it.”
Gu Louyin said, “Already been seen.”
“En?” Xiao Yuan turned around and saw Mu Yingyang, dusty and tired. He seemed the same as before, dressed in black and with a crimson hairband, but somehow he looked like he had grown up and matured. He glanced at the two people standing next to each other, a lonely expression in his eyes, and called, “Shixiong.”
“Shidi is here.” Xiao Yuan smiled, “Have you eaten yet?”
Mu Yingyang said, “Not yet.”
“Then I will ask someone to bring you some food later.”
Mu Yingyang nodded timidly, “Thank you, Shixiong.”
Xiao Yuan waved his hand casually, “Let’s go.” After taking two steps, he thought of one more thing, turned around and said, “By the way, you…”
Mu Yingyang’s starry eyes lit up all of a sudden, “Shixiong?”
Xiao Yuan asked, “When was the last time you saw Shizun?”
Mu Yingyang was taken aback for a moment and said, “Before the flower viewing party was held at Baihua Palace, he gave me an invitation to attend it.”
“So…” Xiao Yuan thought for a while, then said with a smile, “It’s okay, go rest early.”
Mu Yingyang stood still, watching Xiao Yuan and Gu Louyin walk away side by side. Finally, almost out of his sight, Gu Louyin picked up Xiao Yuan.
Starting on the third day of the first month, the cultivators that were invited to Shen Fugui’s wedding arrived at Xuanle Sect one after another. It was inconvenient for Gu Louyin and the people of Xingtian Sect to show up in front of them; only Xiao Yuan could do whatever he wanted. He changed to an unassuming face and met the guests together with the disciples of Xuanle Sect. He saw many familiar faces, such as the ‘old friends’ from Yunjian Pavilion.
When Gu Hang arrived at Xuanle Sect, Shen Qianyan brought the elders of Xuanle Sect as well as the young master to welcome him. Xiao Yuan saw Qian Sang, Jiang Liuyuan and others. What he didn’t expect was that Lin Wulian was also here.
Lin Wulian looked thin and bloodless. At first glance, he looked like someone who had been suffering from a long illness. He walked up to Shen Fugui and said, “Shen-xiong, congratulations.”
Shen Fugui smiled and said, “Thank you.”
Xiao Yuan said, “Master Lin’s illness seems to have not healed yet. At this time, he should stay in Yunjian Pavilion to recuperate.”
“It is Shen-xiong’s wedding, naturally I want to drink his wedding wine.” Lin Wulian paused, then lowered his voice, “I am going to drink a cup of his best friend’s wedding wine for him.”
Xiao Yuan raised his eyebrows, “Please.”
Shen Qianyan set up a banquet to entertain Yunjian Pavilion, but Xiao Yuan was not interested in staying. When passing by, his arm was suddenly grabbed and he was pulled to a hidden corner.
“Ge?” Xiao Yuan was taken aback and looked around, “Why are you here?”
“Don’t worry, no one noticed me.”
Seeing a gloomy look in Xiao Du’s eyes, Xiao Yuan asked, “Have you found something?”
Xiao Du said, “Ah Yu should know the man that was sitting next to Gu Hang just now.”
Xiao Yuan thought about it and said, “You mean Qian Sang? He is one of the elders of Yunjian Pavilion and Gu Hang’s right-hand man.”
Xiao Du said coldly: “He was a subordinate of my father back then. Except for you and me, the Xiao family, including my father’s retainers, is buried in Pangu Mountain. Only he is still alive.”
“You mean, he was the one who leaked the news back then?”
“No wonder,” Xiao Yuan said, “When I first arrived at Yunjian Pavilion, he said that I looked familiar, probably because I look like my mother.”
Xiao Du smiled, “Not bad, everyone is here.”
Xiao Yuan also smiled, “Indeed.”
The fifth day of the first month arrived in a blink of an eye. Xuanle Sect was one of the three great sects, and Shen Fugui was its young master. Naturally, the ceremony of him marrying a wife could not be underestimated. Gu Hang’s personal visit alone was enough to prove its splendor. Lu Liluan, the master of Baihua Palace, was in a retreat and could not come, but she also sent senior disciples with an expensive gift to congratulate him. Xuanle Sect was full of guests and the momentum was extraordinary.
Xiao Yuan followed Shen Qianyan around. Shen Qianyan had seen the disciples of Baihua Palace and said, “Master Lu still didn’t come in the end.”
“But she made her attitude clear to us.” Xiao Yuan said, “At least, she won’t stand on the side of Yunjian Pavilion.”
Shen Qianyan looked at the beams decorated with the red silk and said, “I hope everything goes well.”
At an auspicious time, in the main hall of Xuanle Sect, Shen Qianyan sat in the main seat, flanked by the dignitaries of Yunjian Pavilion and the elders of Xuanle Sect. Shen Fugui was dressed in a bright red wedding dress, his face full of joy, his bearing noble and compelling.
Shortly afterwards, a young girl dressed in red, supported by a matron of honour, walked through the doorway. Shen Fugui hurriedly stepped forward, stood still in front of Cai Xunnian, took a deep breath and received his beloved shimei from the hands of the matron of honour.
The two of them walk up the steps, hand in hand, to the top. In full view of everyone, they performed the ritual of kneeling to the heaven and earth.
After the ceremony, Cai Xunnian retired first, and Shen Fugui stayed to greet the guests. With the sound of music, visitors raised their cups, chatting and laughing. A sword cultivator wearing the attire of Tianhe Sect got up and said, “I heard that Xuanle Sect has a secret melody that can make people’s wishes come true in their dreams. Today is a great day for Young Sect Master Shen, I wonder if I am lucky enough to listen to the ‘Dream of Golden Millet’ (figuratively meaning ‘pipe dream’) and have a beautiful dream.”
As soon as he said that, everyone agreed. Shen Qianyan smiled lightly and said, “No matter how good ‘Dream of Golden Millet’ is, it is just a dream after all.”
“Then let us have a good time in our dreams. Pavilion Master doesn’t mind, right?”
Gu Hang had no interest in such mundane things and said, “You are free to do whatever you want.”
“In that case…” Shen Qianyan raised her hand, and the disciple of Xuanle Sect who was playing music stopped. “Play ‘Dream of Golden Millet’.”
In the past Xiao Yuan and Gu Louyin were tortured by the secret melody of Xuanle Sect in the secret passage of Yunjian Pavilion. On the contrary, ‘Dream of Golden Millet’ brought a beautiful dream in which one could see the scene he was most looking forward to in his life. Since the appearance of ‘Dream of Golden Millet’, too many people indulged in it and did not want to wake up until their spiritual consciousness fell into chaos. Fortunately, it didn’t hurt to listen to it once in a while, at most you would suffer a few days of disappointment
When the qin sounded, everyone looked intoxicated; Gu Hang alone was expressionless, as if he hadn’t heard it.
Xiao Yuan closed his eyes and let himself sink into the illusion.