Chapter 509 – Secret Vow
“What happened after that?” Yun Che’s hands tightened quietly as he asked in an urgent tone.
“After that… Your mother and I were tolerably dealing with the pursuit from Mighty Heavenly Sword Region and had been continuously looking for a chance to return to Heavenly Sword Villa to find my father, but after another party suddenly joined in the pursuit and we were struck by the cold poison. All of this, in addition to Yurou’s pregnancy and the fact that she did not dare to use too much profound energy, caused our escape route to become incomparably difficult and treacherous. At that time, we didn’t even dare hope that we could return to the Heavenly Sword Villa because even preserving our own lives had become exceptionally difficult. I protected Yurou, while she protected the child inside her womb. Till the child’s birth half a year later, we doggedly resisted against all odds.”
“We had been married for several decades and now we finally had a child. But we could not feel any joy because our child was born in the midst of great danger. What pained your mother and I the most was that despite Yurou’s best efforts, the cold poison had invaded our child’s body. And the only comfort we had left to us was that the six months of pain Yurou had endured to protect this child did bear some fruit, the cold poison in our child was very shallow and it was not enough to take his life immediately…”
As he said this, Yun Qinghong’s face did not show the slightest hint that he was comforted. He closed his eyes and sighed sorrowfully, “But we were unable to force it outside the child’s body. As we were left with no other options, your mother and I were forced to make a most painful choice… We used profound energy to force that slight amount of cold poison into his immature profound veins. After which, we would use lightning profound energy to destroy the cold poison, but at the same time…. we also completely destroyed his profound veins.”
“…” Yun Che’s chest violently heaved. In this moment, he had found out that his crippled profound veins was not the result of someone’s attack but it was… because of the cold poison!
Even though more than twenty years had passed, every time he thought of it, Yun Qinghong’s expression would become clouded with pain. To personally destroy his own child’s profound veins was akin to destroying his child’s entire life, and the pain of doing so was ten million times worse than his own crippling. He sighed while continuing, “That child had just been born and his profound veins had not even grown yet. For them to be crippled at that age, he would’ve been condemned to be a cripple for his entire life… But, that was the only way for us to protect his life at that time. If not, once the cold poison had spread, he might not even have lasted seven days.”
“I know…” Yun Che said in a soft voice, “That after that child has grown up, he will definitely understand your difficult situation and he definitely will not blame you.”
Yun Qinghong shook his head in response, “It’s just a pity that though we managed to preserve his life, even to this day, we have never had the chance to see him again. Because twenty years ago, we had left him in the Profound Sky Continent.”
What happened afterwards, Yun Che already more or less knew. He quietly and attentively listened to Yun Qinghong recount his tale…
“We desperately fled with our child. We fled directionlessly, until one day we came across a very familiar place. We entered a small city, and unexpectedly met my sworn brother, Xiao Ying. It was then we found out that it was the Floating Cloud City he lived in. At that time, we were covered in blood, and we had used up our profound energy to its very last drop. We had already prepared ourselves for imminent death, but after meeting Brother Xiao Ying, he berated me. He said that if we didn’t want our child to grow up without any parents, we had to desperately protect our lives and escape from this place. After that, he arranged for a large amount of clothing, food, and medicine to be prepared for us in the shortest amount of time. He also drew a map for us, and instructed us on the best escape route and safest haven for us to conceal ourselves in…”
“We were extremely unfamiliar with the Profound Sky Continent, and when we had fled all those other times, it was as though we were headless chickens running amok. With the instruction and help of Brother Xiao Ying, we successfully shook off the people who were pursuing us and hid under a waterfall… If not for Brother Xiao Ying’s help and instruction, we wouldn’t have escaped and it was would’ve been impossible for us to continue surviving. Our lives were preserved entirely due to his efforts… Even to the point where, during the time he sheltered us, he secretly swapped his newborn son for our own when we were unaware. It was only after we put in all effort into fleeing and we found the safe haven that we discovered this…”
Yun Che, “…”
“Truth be told, after meeting Brother Xiao Ying, I had thought of leaving the child to him before Yurou and I went to meet our deaths, but I was deeply afraid that this would cause a calamity to engulf Xiao Ying’s entire family. However, I did not expect for Brother Xiao Ying, in an effort to preserve our family line, to secretly swap both our sons…” Yun Qinghong shut both his eyes as the corners of his eyes trembled uncontrollably, “For I, Yun Qinghong, to have such a brother in this life, is the greatest gift ever bestowed to me by the heavens.”
“So this means that your own child was left in the Profound Sky Continent, in that place called Floating Cloud City, and that Uncle Xiao’s child… is actually Yun Xiao?” Yun Che asked lightly.
‘Yes…” Yun Qinghong gently nodded as he replied, “This is the truth behind Xiao’er’s origins. After we had broken away from our pursuers, we did think of returning to Floating Cloud City, but at that time, both of us suffered great injuries while also suffering from the cold poison. As a result, we were on our last legs and left only with a sliver of our previous strength. If we had returned to Floating Cloud City hastily and exposed ourselves, not only would we die, we would also bring a huge calamity upon Xiao Ying and his family. So the only thing left for us to do would be to commit all of our energy to surviving… No matter what, we had to protect his child. At that time I understood very well that Brother Xiao Ying swapped our sons to not only protect our bloodline, but to also stimulate our will to life to the point where we would give it our all.”
“So how did you escape in the end?” Yun Che asked.
“Our Yun Family has a secret device which we can use to step across space, but every time we use it, we would need to wait for another three years before it can be used it again. Three months after we had successfully hidden ourselves from our pursuers, the secret device regained its strength and we were able to return to the Illusory Demon Realm.”
“If you had a secret device which could directly transport you to the Profound Sky Continent, why didn’t you use it again to go back there and find your own child?”
Yun Qinghong shook his head and laughed lifelessly, “After being invaded multiple times by the people from the Illusory Demon Realm, the powers in the Profound Sky Continent had set up an extremely powerful net of defenses and alerts. We could indeed use the secret device again, but once we entered the Profound Sky Continent, we would have been found out immediately. We had already been crippled by then; if we had used the secret device, we would only be going to our deaths. As for the others… Why would they risk it all just for our child? Thus, we could only treat Xiao’er as our own flesh and blood in order to conceal the truth of his origins… But the descendents of the Yun Family all possess a profound handle which exists within their bloodline. As he grew up, more and more people came to doubt his status as our true son, and he had to grow up under the weight of unceasing reproach… We had long ago known that this would happen, but there was nothing that we could do.”
Yun Che had more or less figured out the truth of what happened all those years ago in these last few years. But after listening to Yun Qinghong give his own recount of those events, he felt as if a tidal wave of emotion had washed over him, and making it hard for him to keep calm. The ambitions of the Four Great Sacred Grounds had caused the Demon Emperor’s clan to suffer greatly, and at the same time these ambitions also caused great tragedy to befall both the Yun and Xiao families. The lives of both him and Yun Xiao had also been completely turned on its head due to these events.
“…For you to tell me all of this, is it in hopes of a future where Yun Xiao and I venture forth together to the Profound Sky Continent, so we can find his real family?” Yun Che asked in a low voice.
Yun Qinghong gently nodded his head and replied, “Even though I do not know why you have treated our family with such kindness, I can tell from the good things that you have done for Yun Xiao and the way you called us Father and Mother, that there isn’t a trace of falseness or hypocrisy within your heart. And while I still have too many suspicions about you myself, I can’t seem to reject you whatsoever in any way. Instead, there seems to be a kind of… indescribable intimacy and trust that I feel towards you.” He gave a small chuckle, as though he was enjoying this strange sensation, “Because Xiao’er is suspected of being from the Profound Sky Continent, he has been rejected and excluded by everyone else and he never had any friends since he was young. This year, he is going to be twenty-two, yet you are the only one who has ever been willing to be brothers with him… Even though I have said all of these things and have put you in a rather difficult position, Xiao’er’s talent is not first-rate, so the only one who can help him return to the Profound Sky Continent and reacquaint him with his ancestral lands is you. Because it is only fitting for him to return there one day, as that is where his home truly is, and Xiao Ying’s family is surely there, eagerly waiting for his return…”
“…Then do the two of you, miss your own child?” Yun Che asked in a voice so low it could barely be heard.
Yun Qinghong squeezed both of his eyes shut, answering in a voice that sounded as light as the wind, “As for myself, I can still cope. Because I fully trust that my brother Xiao Ying will definitely not mistreat my son, as long as Brother Xiao Ying is around, not only will he not suffer from any ill treatment, he will definitely be living an extremely happy life. On this matter I can be sure. But as for Yurou, she… All these years, she has been missing our son every day and night, and she has shed an ocean of tears over him. To the point where she sometimes cries in her sleep until she wakes up… She keeps thinking about whether our son is alright and because his profound veins were crippled, she keeps worrying over whether he is being bullied or mocked. At the same time, she also blames and hates herself… And even after all these years, not only did her worries not lessen, the frustrations in her heart grew heavier and heavier. As a result, she keeps falling ill these past few years. Other people all think it is because the cold poison keeps flaring up, but only I know the truth, that it is her grief which leaves her bedridden. The only thing supporting her right now is Xiao’er. She treats Xiao’er as her very own flesh and blood, and even better than that, all in the hopes that our own child will receive the very same treatment that Xiao’er receives.”
By the time he completed the process of expelling the poison within Yun Qinghong’s body, the sky had already turned dark. Under the aftereffects of the expulsion of the cold poison, Yun Qinghong and his wife had drifted off into a deep slumber. Yun Che exited the room and stood in the middle of the courtyard. He raised his head as he gazed at the incomplete moon which had long ago risen into the sky. The night breeze brushed past his face, rustling the hair which fell across his forehead.
“Why don’t you just tell them who you really are? You have so many ways to prove that you are actually their son… blood test, Profound Handle, the Mirror of Samsara, any of these things will do!” Jasmine asked in a bland voice.
“…Now is not the right time yet.” Yun Che silently gazed at the scenery in front of him, “At least, it is completely unfair to Yun Xiao.”
“The right time? Hmph, so what are you intend to do next?”
Yun Che raised his head once more and a cold light flashed in his eyes, “Since fate has seen fit to bring me to this place and has also allowed me to find my true family and my birth parents, then I must definitely do all that I can… All those years ago, Grandfather severed his own life vein in order to allow me to escape that place. My life was bought using Grandfather’s life, I will help him carry out his wishes and will!”
“Grandfather was left to rot and die for one hundred years, all for the sake of the Demon Royal Family, but all he got in return was recrimination, and even the rest of the Yun Family was implicated in his ‘crimes’… On what grounds do they have to do that?!” Yun Che gritted his teeth in anger, “Because of the Demon Royal Family, I lost Grandfather. Because of Grandfather, my father and mother became crippled for over twenty years and received the same disdain that I received all those years ago when I was crippled as well… I am the grandson of Yun Canghai, the son of Yun Qinghong, and while the both of them possess an unshakeable loyalty to the Illusory Demon Royal Family… I do not!! All I can see is the immense debt that they owe my family!! What the Illusory Demon Royal Family owes my grandfather, owes my parents and owes me… I want them… to pay back it a thousand times over!!”