After leaving the Blood Stream Sect, Bai Xiaochun shot through the air in a beam of light. The sky stretched out in all directions, peppered with occasional clouds. Flying along as he was, Bai Xiaochun felt as free as a bird.
The jungle which filled the Blood Stream Sect’s territory was the color of blood, and in many areas, radiated a dangerous and brutal aura.
However, whatever deadly entities existed therein quickly shrank down into the shadows as soon as they sensed Bai Xiaochun’s blood qi.
Virtually everything in the area was connected in some way to the Blood Stream Sect, and Bai Xiaochun soon found that it could all be suppressed by his aura.
As far as the cultivator clans in the area went, Bai Xiaochun’s high status in the Blood Stream Sect ensured that he could completely ignore them. When blood masters went out of the sect, even if they went out alone, they had numerous ways to suppress anyone or anything they came across. They could travel about completely unobstructed.
Even the most powerful beasts Bai Xiaochun encountered would retreat once they sensed his aura. None of them dared to provoke him.
Bai Xiaochun flew along enjoying the scenery, feeling very relaxed. Along the way, he spent some time to practice cultivation. Now that he was away from the Blood Stream Sect, he could tell that his Undying Live Forever Technique was working a bit more sluggishly.
Unfortunately, there was nothing he could do about that. Thankfully, he had the legacy of the Blood Ancestor, and could now be considered a true master of the Undying Codex. Although his cultivation of it had slowed some, he was practicing the true method, and was thus able to compensate for the decrease in speed.
As for the Violet Qi Heavenspan Incantation, Bai Xiaochun decided it was best not to cultivate it in Blood Stream Sect territory. A signature magical technique like that would be best practiced after he passed over the Luochen Mountains.
However, he was itching to try out his Human Controlling Grand Magic, and managed to find a few chances to practice with it. He hadn't spent much time working on it, but now that his cultivation base was at the mid Foundation Establishment stage, the spiritual power he could wield ensured that the Human Controlling Grand Magic was quite marvelous.
By now, he had been studying the powers of gravity and repulsion for years, and yet, wasn't willing to give up on them, and continued to spend time analyzing them.
When he got tired because of all the traveling, he would impose on one of the local cultivator clans. Whenever he left such clans, they would always throw a big fanfare out of respect for him.
As time went on, his sighs grew heavier. He was going to miss being a blood master. As far as he was concerned, giving up that title was worse than losing a fortune.
“Ai. I really am simply too righteous. Too principled! I'm giving up so much for the sake of the Spirit Stream Sect.” The more Bai Xiaochun thought about it, the more he felt like he was really making a huge sacrifice.
“And then there’s Song Junwan....” Whenever he thought about her, he remembered her beautiful features, and would feel his heart growing hot. He sighed.
“Wan'er, good and evil just can’t mix....” he said, trying to look as righteous as possible. However, the disappointment he felt forced him to turn back and look longingly in the direction of the Blood Stream Sect.
The further away he got, the more he thought about everything that he had done there. Eventually, he just had to grit his teeth and fly onward.
One day, an enormous mountain range rose up in front of him, stretching out along the horizon like a dragon.
Although it seemed close, from what Bai Xiaochun could tell it was at least half a day away even if he flew at top speed.
“Once I get over those mountains, I’ll be in Spirit Stream Sect territory....” Determination flickered in his eyes, and he was just about to fly onward when, all of a sudden, he caught sight of three beams of light flying through the air toward him.
Soon, an old man became visible, along with two younger men. The old man had a Foundation Establishment cultivation base, whereas the younger men were in the seventh or eighth level of Qi Condensation, and were flying with the aid of magical devices. As they all flew along, the old man frowned and rebuked the younger men.
“War is on the horizon! You two are the future of the Shuiyue Clan! If you fly with speed like that, how do you think you’ll manage to stay alive in the fighting!?
“To fly with magical items requires control of your cultivation base! However, skill is only one of the things that will enable you to fly!” The two young men gritted their teeth and worked harder to control their magical devices. And yet, no matter what they did, they still wobbled unstably. One of them even managed to get so out of control that he fell off.
“Imbecile!” the old man spat. “The clan has spent a lot of resources on training you, and yet you’re as dumb as an ox!” He swished his sleeve, catching the young man before he fell. He was about to continue with his tirade when he suddenly sensed Bai Xiaochun.
Irritated, the man looked over and said, “Hmph! What are you blind? Don’t you know this is Shuiyue Clan territory? You’re not allowed to fly around here. Screw the hell off!”
Bai Xiaochun had originally planned to ignore the group of three and simply fly along. But then the old man had the nerve to curse him.
“What did you just say!?” Bai Xiaochun said, glaring back at the old man.
The old man’s eyes went wide, and then he gasped and began to tremble visibly.
“That’s the blood master of Middle Peak,” he thought, “Nightcrypt the Plaguedevil!!”
The old man’s face drained of blood as he thought back to what he had just said. Heart pounding, he bitterly clasped hands and bowed toward Bai Xiaochun.
“The Shuiyue Clan offers greetings, exalted Blood Master!”
Bai Xiaochun snorted coldly and then approached the group of three.
“How did you people know where to find me?” he asked icily.
The sight of Bai Xiaochun looking them up and down caused the two young Qi Condensation cultivators to bow their heads in terror. Even the old Foundation Establishment cultivator felt his scalp tingling in anxiety as he thought of all of the blood-curdling stories he'd heard about the blood master of Middle Peak.
“W-we didn't know you were in the area, oh exalted Blood Master. The Shuiyue Clan is based in this region, so we pay attention to all the passing cultivators. When we realized you had come, we immediately came out to offer greetings, and invite you to our humble clan to rest for a bit....”
Bai Xiaochun nodded arrogantly. Considering he was a blood master, he figured it would be best to act much more brazenly than normal.
“Very well,” he said. “Take me to this clan of yours.”
The old man shivered. Plastering a smile onto his face, he immediately led Bai Xiaochun back to his clan.
The Shuiyue Clan was located in Blood Stream Sect territory, and although it wasn’t one of the larger cultivator clans, they were more powerful than the smaller clans. A middle-sized clan, they occupied three mountains that were covered with emerald green fruit trees, forming quite a contrast with the surrounding crimson-colored vegetation.
The fruit on the trees was pitch black, and emanated a strange, fragrant aroma which filled the entire Shuiyue Clan, giving it a somewhat otherworldly air.
As soon as Bai Xiaochun got near, he noticed the strangeness of the clan, and couldn’t help but exclaim, “Eee?!”
“Exalted Blood Master, these fruits aren’t a product of the Shuiyue Clan. They grow here naturally. In the past, the Blood Stream Sect came to harvest some of the fruits, and determined that they were toxic. Because of that, they’re inedible, and are only good for making poison. However, the aroma of the fruit can be used to drive away certain wild beasts. It also has certain hallucinogenic properties....”
The old man didn't seem very surprised at all by Bai Xiaochun’s reaction. Whenever anyone visited the Shuiyue Clan for the first time, they would be somewhat entranced by the fruits. However, despite many years of research, no one had ever found a use for the fruits by cultivators.
When Bai Xiaochun flew into the Shuiyue Clan and stepped onto their first mountain, the clan members there were all shocked, and immediately began to bow in formal greeting. Bai Xiaochun ignored them and walked up to one of the fruit trees. After plucking one of the fruits off of the tree, he looked at it closely, and quickly confirmed that the information he'd been given was true.
“The world of plants and vegetation is filled with all sorts of fantastic oddities.... This fruit's aroma truly can cause hallucinations....” As he looked around at the trees, he could tell that they were very old. After looking around for a bit, he was even able to find one tree on the third mountain that was so old he couldn’t identify its age.
That tree was so large that ten people could wrap their arms around its trunk. It was somewhat withered, with more than half of the tree showing no signs of life.
The aroma emitted by the fruits on that tree were particularly strong. After sniffing one of the fruits, Bai Xiaochun felt somewhat lightheaded, and was forced to rotate his cultivation base to dispel the effects.
“What a pity. You can dispel the effects within a breath of time with your cultivation base. If the effects lasted longer, maybe these fruits might be worth something.” Shaking his head, he turned to leave. However, it was at that moment that his expression flickered, and he looked down at his bag of holding.
A moment before, he had sensed a certain aura inside the bag suddenly change. After scanning the bag of holding with divine sense, a strange expression appeared on his face. Waving away the surrounding members of the Shuiyue Clan, he pulled out a little palm-sized turtle shell, which was the potential relic of eternal indestructibility he’d acquired from Song Junwan’s immortal's cave. Before, the turtle shell had seemed as hard as a rock. After all, whatever was inside the shell was long since dead. However, because of the fragrant aroma of the old fruit tree, the shell had changed, and whatever was inside now seemed different, somehow soft and pliable.
Suddenly, a green little tail popped out of the back of the shell. Bai Xiaochun’s eyes went wide as four little limbs emerged, and then an emerald green head....
“It's alive?” Gasping, he looked closer. Closer examination revealed that the head and limbs were all limp and lifeless. They almost just looked like mere decorations.
Something about it seemed strange, but Bai Xiaochun wasn’t sure what. After a moment of thought, he shook the turtle shell back and forth a bit. When the head and limbs smacked into the shell, knocking sounds rang out....Previous Chapter Next Chapter
Translator: Deathblade. Chinese language consultant: ASI a.k.a. Beerblade. Editor: GNE. Memes: Logan. Meme archives: Tocsin. Transcendent Patrons: Daoist Elder N, BLE, ttre208. AWE Glossary. Xianxia-inspired T-shirts.
Hey everyone. One of the main reasons I got interested in Chinese culture, and then went down the path of learning Chinese, was the movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. That movie is based on one of the books in the Crane-Iron series by wuxia novelist Wang Dulu. The translation of the first book in that series, The Crane Startles Kunlun, is complete! Check it out if you're interested in reading some very classic wuxia.