Chapter 594: Pain in the Whole Body
Meng Hao’s memories of her were somewhat vague. He had actually not interacted with her much at all. In fact, if he recalled matters correctly, they hadn’t even met each other.
There was only one thing connecting them, and that was the Song Clan’s search for a son-in-law. In the end, although they were clearly strangers, they were still connected together.
Most accurately speaking, this was… Meng Hao’s beloved from the Song Clan.
Because she was a daughter of the Song Clan, it was impossible for her to have a second beloved, not after the search for a son-in-law. Her reputation and the face of the Song Clan could not permit that.
After Meng Hao fled, the Song Clan did not speak of the matter to outsiders. However, to the young woman, the entire matter came as quite a blow.
She had always been a tender and delicate girl. Although she had outstanding latent talent, her heart was weak. That made it hard for her to be strong. She was like a flower in a greenhouse, who feared the rain of the outside world.
That was how Meng Hao remembered Song Jia. She was beautiful and had gentle eyes, with a tender weakness deep within her expression. 1
Now, however, a hundred years had passed. Song Jia had changed. Her eyes were filled with strength, and the weakness that she had concealed deep in her heart all those years ago had been shed. She had grown up.
She had been left with no choice other than to grow up. After the matter with Meng Hao, she had no chance to choose a new beloved. Strangely, the Song Clan Patriarch made no extra demands of her, and in fact treated her quite politely. It made her feel almost like she was an outsider.
She hadn’t understood it back then, but many years later she came to realize that none of it had anything to do with her. Starting with that search for a son-in-law… everything had changed.
She had come to understand that in addition to her identity as a member of the Song Clan, she had acquired some other mysterious background. The power of that background made it so that everyone in the Song Clan trembled like cicadas in winter when they faced her. It was as if they didn’t know what to do with her.
All the resources of the Clan came to be at her disposal. In fact, it came to the point where she seemed to be even more important than her older brother, Song Yunshu. All her demands were complied with, which led to increasingly intense jealousy on the part of her older brother. The more he pushed against her, the more she had backed down. However, by the time the Primordial Demon Immortal Plane arrived, Song Yunshu had only become more aggressive than before.
In fact, in the First Plane, were it not for her being completely on guard, she might very well have died at his hands. That matter had filled her heart with intense pain.
She immediately recognized Meng Hao. The complicated feelings in her heart had been knotting up there for more than a hundred years. When their gazes met, she gave him a slight nod.
Meng Hao gazed back silently for a moment and then looked away.
When he saw Li Shiqi, he instantly thought of Wang Youcai, who joined the Reliance Sect along with Meng Hao that year. He also thought of Little Tiger, who he hadn’t seen after leaving the State of Zhao. Perhaps he had left along with old turtle Reliance. 2
Before he realized what was happening, the feeling of the passage of time appeared in Meng Hao’s heart. He sighed inwardly. Sometimes, it is only when encountering old friends that such a feeling will give rise to sighing and sobbing.
Li Shiqi smiled slightly, looking very cool and collected. Meng Hao nodded, then glanced over the other Cultivators from the Southern Domain. The rest were people he didn’t recognize.
However, one of them gave him a feeling that reminded him of the Li Clan Dao Child who had died at his hands, Li Daoyi. 3
This new man was tall and strapping, with a gaze like a blade. He stood there like a sheathed sword, ready to burst into action and split apart Heaven and Earth.
This was the current generation Dao Child of the Li Clan, Li Tiandao!
There was another Cultivator who didn’t look very impressive. It was an old, gaunt man who appeared to be all smiles, but whose expression was one of envy as he looked at Meng Hao. Meng Hao didn’t recognize him, but as he stood there among the other Southern Domain Cultivators, he caused a feeling of loathing to rise up within Meng Hao.
He didn’t see anyone from the Violet Fate Sect, the Solitary Sword Sect, or any disciples from the other Sects. He was a bit puzzled by that, but this was not the time to make inquiries.
Finally there were Cultivators from the Western Desert, or perhaps it would be more accurate to say the Black Lands.
There was Zhao Fang and Duo Lan, as well as two others that he didn’t recognize. He didn’t see Patriarch Huyan anywhere. 4
There were quite a few people he didn’t know here; in contrast, everyone here seemed to know exactly who he was.
He was Ke Jiusi, son of a Paragon, the number one silkpants in the Demon Immortal Sect, one of the Masters of the Demon Entente. He was famous, which of course filled everyone here with envy.
That was especially so after the shocking events of the Demon Immortal Pagoda. The envy in some of these people was rooted deep in their hearts, and had transformed into deep jealousy.
To these people, Meng Hao was the Chosen of the illusory ancient Second Plane, brilliant and splendorous.
Glancing over them all, he grinned and leaned up against the doorframe. With a smile, he said, “Hello, Fellow Daoists. What matter is it that you wished to discuss here with humble old me?”
He truly looked like a silkpants now, especially the way he leaned up against the doorframe. He seemed at ease, which caused everyone present to frown.
However, there was nothing they could do about it. They were Inner Sect disciples, and the difference between their status and Meng Hao’s was like the difference between Heaven and Earth. In fact, many of them would never even dare to meet Meng Hao in person.
If it weren’t for the fact that they were being forced by urgent circumstances, and faced with the potential of incredible profit that they couldn’t simply abandon, then they would never be willing to allow Meng Hao to see them in such a position as they were.
Some of them had even considering trying to hide their faces, or use other methods to attend this meeting. However, as soon as they got near to Meng Hao, he would be able to sense who they were, so any attempts at concealment would be useless.
The only way to be completely safe was to stay far away from him. However, this meeting was far too important. They need to show the spirit of good faith, otherwise, there wouldn’t even be the slightest chance of success.
That was why the Fang Clan and the Ji Clan had joined forces along with all the others. Their alliance had only one adversary, Meng Hao. They would combine all their power and then bring it to bear in the negotiations to come.
That was the only way they all would dare to meet with Meng Hao in person.
Such frustration was something that blazing suns like them would find difficult to accept in the outside world.
As Meng Hao’s words echoed out, everyone was silent. Nobody responded. All of them began to exchange glances, until finally, the gazes began to fall onto the Ji and Fang Clans.
As for the Ji Clan, they maintained their silence and looked over at the Fang Clan.
Fang Yu cleared her throat and looked at Meng Hao.
“There’s something we would like to ask you to go the trouble of helping us with,” she said. “Of course there will be compensation, and a lot of it!” It wasn’t clear how Fang Yu seemed to understand Meng Hao so well, but as soon as the words came out of her mouth, his interest seemed to be sparked.
“It’s actually quite a simple thing,” she continued. “You’ve surely seen the staircase floating above the pit between the Third and Fourth Peaks. All you have to do is climb that staircase to the top, and then leave this place. That’s all.
“In exchange, each of us here will give you 100,000 Spirit Stones as compensation. Look… there are dozens of people here. Therefore, we’re talking about millions of Spirit Stones. That’s quite a bit of profit for very little work, don’t you think? You really need to listen to your big sis here.” She winked at him, after which he began to perform some calculations.
“Hmm. I don’t think so, big sis. I’ve been getting a lot of headaches lately…. Also my shoulder got twisted while I was practicing cultivation. And my legs. I think it might be that I just can’t acclimate myself to this place. Every day they ache constantly.” He rolled his eyes, pulling a long face.
As soon as he said this, unsightly expressions appeared on the faces of the others present. Although no one spoke, they were murmuring to themselves. A Cultivator getting a headache? Who would possibly believe that?
A twisted shoulder because of cultivation? It’s not like he was practicing the Spider and Toad Skill. How could he possibly twist his shoulder…?
And then there was the expression ‘can’t acclimate.’ This made them want to curse him. None of them had experienced anything like that, and yet Meng Hao had?
Furthermore… all of them had entered here in soul only. Who had ever heard of a soul that ‘couldn’t acclimate.’
“Look here, at my neck. It hurts really bad, right here.” Massaging the spot, he sighed and continued, “I think I need to go back to my Immortal’s cave and lay down for a bit. I’ll have my dad call some of the Junior Sisters over to do some massage and other blood-flow invigoration techniques. As for this favor of yours, I’m afraid I really can’t help out.”
Everyone else was on the verge of going crazy, but had no choice other than to suppress their fury. From their perspective, Meng Hao was brazenly showing off his own identity and the fact that he had a Paragon as a dad.
He was going to call some Junior Sisters to massage him and stimulate his blood flow…? This caused all of the male cultivators to clench their jaws tightly.
Next, Meng Hao said something that arose even more fury. “Well then, it’s starting to get dark out. Dad’s waiting for me to eat dinner, so I should go. See you!” Yawning, he turned to leave.
“ENOUGH!” roared Fang Yu, clenching her fists tightly. “You’re constant yapping about ‘my dad this’ and ‘my dad that.’ Is Ke Yunhai really your dad?!” As soon as the words left her mouth, Fang Yu regretted speaking them.
Meng Hao stopped in place. He turned to look at her coldly. “Even though I don’t actually know who my father is,” he said, “that doesn’t have anything to do with you.”
Fang Yu truly wished to enter the Third Plane. However, she also was looking out for Meng Hao’s best interests. The words she had spoken just now had only come out in the heat of anger.
“Look….” she continued quickly, “all we want you to do is climb a staircase. Then you can lead us out of the Second Plane and into the Third Plane. It’s a simple thing for you! Besides, you can acquire a lot of good fortune in the Third Plane. In addition, it will put you on good terms with everyone here. When you get back to South Heaven later on, then your path….”
Meng Hao understood all of that. Furthermore, he felt no ill will at all coming from Fang Yu, and as such, also felt no hostility toward her. His expression softened a bit.
“I can take you all into the Third Plane,” he said coolly.
“However, 100,000 Spirit Stones isn’t enough. I want half of what you acquire within the Third Plane!
“If all of you agree, then we can conclude this bargain now. All of you can swear an oath from your heart; if you break it, you will become one with the Dao. We Cultivators place a lot of importance on oaths, especially ones that have to do with cultivation. You don’t want to cause entanglements that will hinder progress in your Cultivation base and eventually cause you to be destroyed in body and soul.
“If you don’t agree, then I’ll consider the matter ended, and we can just wait peacefully for the Second Plane to collapse.
“Whatever choice you make, make it quickly.” With that, Meng Hao turned to leave.
“Don’t you want to go to the Third Plane?” called out Wang Lihai.
Without even looking back, Meng Hao said, “What I’ve acquired in the Second Plane is already sufficient. It doesn’t matter at all whether I go to the Third Plane or not.” With that, he made his way off into the distance.
- Song Jia appeared a few times throughout the story. The majority of her characterization occurred in chapters 186, 189, and 190 ↩
- Wang Youcai and Little Tiger joined the Reliance Sect at the same time as Meng Hao. After reencountering Little Tiger in chapter 71, Meng Hao came to the conclusion that he killed Wang Youcai to acquire the precious pearl treasure. However, Wang Youcai later turned out to be alive and a member of the Blood Demon Sect. He made his first reappearance in chapter 120 and following chapters when he participated in the Blood Immortal Legacy tournament. He was also at the Song Clan search for a son-in-law starting in chapter 187, where he behaved oddly but also stood by Meng Hao. ↩
- Li Daoyi was the Dao Child who Meng Hao fought in the Blood Immortal Legacy tournament. After severing his arm, they faced off again at the Song Clan search for a son-in-law. Later, Meng Hao killed him in chapter 304 ↩
- Zhao Fang is the guy Meng Hao offered to watch out for in exchange for protection for the Golden Crow Tribe. Duo Lan is the Chosen from the Butterfly Demon Sect ↩