AST 981 - A Single Smile Would Overthrow A City, The Next Would Overthrow An Entire Country
The next day!
Qing Shui bid goodbye to his family since he had some business to attend to. He allowed the members of the Qing Clan to choose to stay for two days, or go back to the Heavenly Palace if they preferred. In any case, he would go home soon when he was done with his matters.
The others didn’t say anything special but asked him to come home as soon as possible. Qing Shui turned towards Yiye Jiange and Luan Luan and said, “I’m going to the Skysword Sect, do you want to come?”
“Yes, I want to go. I miss that place so much, it’s been a long while.” Luan Luan replied happily.
Yiye Jiange was stunned for a moment, but nodded her head. She glanced towards Qing Shui suspiciously, which caused him to develop a guilty conscience. He wasn’t sure whether Yiye Jiange knew about his relationship with Zhu Qing or not.
If he didn’t do anything wrong, he wouldn’t have felt the way he did just now. Because of his guilty conscience, he evaded her gaze entirely without batting an eyelid. Di Qing didn’t feel like joining, so the three of them mounted their flying beasts and flew directly from the Yan City towards Cang Lang Country.
Even though Canghai Mingyue and Huoyun Liu-Li could go back and visit the ‘Earthly Paradise’ in the Cang Lang Country, they couldn’t leave the Qing Clan at the moment. They decided to go back when the time was right, and asked Qing Shui to drop by there on his way to the Skysword Sect.
Qing Shui smiled and nodded in agreement. Then he faced his family and waved goodbye.
Luan Luan had her own flying beast, so she winked at Qing Shui to mount on his own with Yiye Jiange so that they could spend more time together. Qing Shui rubbed his nose and smiled, then he pulled Yiye Jiange onto the Fire Bird, causing her to smile in defeat after turning to look at the silent teasing exchange between the man on her side and Luan Luan.
She knew she was the same as Luan Luan - both of them sought comfort in each other mentally. Even though Luan Luan had the same attitude when she was with Qing Shui, like a relationship between a father and a daughter, nothing had changed since then. But she knew the truth in her heart, and that explained everything Yiye Jiange had been doing for the past few years. Her relationship with Qing Shui was unnatural, but there was nothing she could do to wear away the awkwardness between them.
Qing Shui felt helpless as well. He had pretended to be husband and wife with Yiye Jiange because of that same reason. Now that Luan Luan understood their situation, there was no need for the charade anymore.
However, Yiye Jiange knew about the things that Luan Luan had said to Qing Shui, and she didn’t know what to feel about it. She had been carrying the blood burden on her shoulders ever since she had lost everything in her life, so the thought of marriage had never clicked in her mind. Yiye Jiange had closed off her heart, pushing away those who tried to unlock her true self.
She always felt that her life was a series of torment and suffering. Her childhood was bright and happy, living as an heiress to the large and famous Ye Clan. That was until the sudden loss of everything and everyone in her life. It was during this loss that the memories of her childhood had become the most precious thing to her, but nothing could bring back the happier times when everything had faded into the past. Whenever she recalled those memories, her heart would break until she felt numb. No one could understand her suffering. There were many times that she considered suicide as an option, but she couldn’t bring herself to do it. Her memory of her parents sacrificing themselves so that she and her brother could live prevented her from attempting to suicide several times. Even if she were to become a living corpse, she would have to live on in this world.
Even so, she had thought about marrying to a man of great power so that she could use that power to exact her revenge. Yiye Jiange knew that she was attractive in appearance, but to find a man who could go against the mighty forces of the Lion King’s Ridge was almost impossible. Moreover, the stronger a man becomes, the more strenuous his duties to his family would be. No one would allocate any resources or time to declare a war against a supreme sect for the sake of a woman.
Eventually, she started to let go of her thoughts of revenge and bottled her hatred inside her heart along with the basic needs of relationship and romance. That one time in the Hundred Miles City was to prevent someone else from becoming a person like her.
However, she hadn’t expected that one day she would ultimately seal her destiny with that young man. He was her friend, at least. Perhaps even a good friend, but that was about it.
But what caught her by surprise was that the man she had saved had reached a transcending growth all by himself, and he was able to bring back her brother’s daughter to her. Yiye Jiange actually trusted him and told him her deepest secret. It was quite unbelievable when she recalled those moments she had with him.
At this moment, he reached out and held her hand, but she didn’t feel uncomfortable from their skinship, nor did she reject his touch. Her current attitude towards the situation was a shock to herself, because she even felt a slight relief when her hand was clasped by his. She turned towards the man who was smiling just for her. He was a man who was younger than her, and a man whom she had treated as a junior. She wouldn’t have accepted him as her pupil if she didn’t see him that way, but things had changed since then. Their relationship had become more complicated, and she was even a bit confused at their current standpoint.
He was gazing at her eyes that were filled with reluctance, linger, and pity…… And she suddenly felt nervous from his gaze. Yiye Jiange swiveled her head away slowly, feeling the increased throbbing in her heart. She was unsure about her feelings at this moment.
However, she knew one thing for sure - she was touched by his feelings!
This was the first time that she had a clear understanding of her own feelings. Perhaps this was also the moment she finally noticed that she really needed a man who was capable of loving her, but Yiye Jiange thought otherwise and quickly dispersed this thought.
She may have felt this way before, but she didn’t want to risk Qing Shui and make him bet his life against a powerful sect. She looked down again to see that her hand was still being held tightly by this man, and because of that, she raised her head towards him and gave him a smile.
A single smile would overthrow a city, the next would overthrow an entire country!
“At first glance, soldiers will lose their town; at second glance, a monarch will lose his crown!” Qing Shui continued to glance at Yiye Jiange, who was startled by his sudden outburst.
“Will you become my wife one day?” Qing Shui asked with a smile.
Yiye Jiange looked at Qing Shui bewilderedly as she couldn’t catch his meaning. Nevertheless, she smiled at him and said, “You have so many wives by your side. There’s no difference if I become your wife or not.”
“I knew you would say that. I know, I should have been satisfied to even have one wife by my side. But I did not force them to be with me, and I like them all so….” Qing Shui became awkward as he looked at Yiye Jiange besides him.
“So you are the same. The stronger you are, the greater your desire to monopolize women will become. In the past, you might have been satisfied with just one of them as your wife, but that’s because you weren’t strong yet. As you’ve grown stronger, your desire became greater too.”
When he heard the words coming out from her mouth, Qing Shui was stunned. Her words were true for the most part, but he had never felt that he had betrayed his conscience in the slightest. Those who became his wife were the ones he really liked. But those he never had feelings for wouldn’t become his lover, much less a wife, like Xiang Bao from Xiang Clan and Gongsun Jianwu from Gongsun Clan.
“Jiange, do you wish to have a man who would only love one woman?” Qing Shui chuckled.
It was rare enough for Yiye Jiange to shoot a contemptuous look at Qing Shui, which was why he became a bit timid when he saw her eyes. Regardless, he gripped her hand tighter in an attempt to appease her angry emotion.
“No woman would want to share their husband with another woman. People are selfish creatures. Just like treasures - no matter how many treasures appear in front of you, you will have one favorite treasure even though you might like all of them. Most importantly, your taste in treasures will change, and so your favorite treasure may become something else.” Yiye Jiange revealed a soft smile as she glanced at Qing Shui.
Qing Shui, on the other hand, was looking at Yiye Jiange dumbfoundedly. Her words now made sense, and it was easy to understand how that logic came to be. But her reasoning could apply to other people as well, just like those people in his past life who had mistresses behind their wives. They would find new women and dump their old romance. Qing Shui reflected on himself and asked which one among his wives he loved the most…..
When Yiye Jiange saw Qing Shui silently pondering over something, she shook his hand intentionally to break him away from his thoughts. Qing Shui raised his head and looked at her. He smiled when he saw an apologetic smile appearing in the corner of her mouth.
“I’m not trying to lecture you or anything. This kind of situation is common you know….”
“I know. I understand what you’re saying. But you still haven’t answered my question yet.” Qing Shui felt relieved when she explained her words. Once they opened up and communicated with each other, a lot of things were cleared up in an instant.
“I really don’t know. I’ve never thought about it actually. If I have feelings for a man, I don’t think I’ll fuss over that too much. How do you think your wives are able to become sisters and live peacefully with each other?” Yiye Jiange smiled.
“Then what about Jiange’s feelings towards me…..” Qing Shui asked boldly, yet with a slight hint of awkwardness in his query.
Yiye Jiange raised up her hand that Qing Shui had been holding and said, “I have feelings for you - a feeling that you are a rascal.”
As soon as she finished her sentence, she revealed a cheerful smile, which prompted Qing Shui to do the same. He understood her meaning a little, and the fact that he could still hold her hand hinted at her feelings towards him. Of course, there was still a chance that she actually meant the matters concerning the Lion King’s Ridge, but that was just his guess as she didn’t say her intentions directly.
“If you marry someone else, I will probably vomit blood thinking about how that man will hold you in his arms.” Qing Shui said nonchalantly after thinking about a lot of things.
“What nonsense are you thinking about….” Yiye Jiange raised her hand and knocked on his head after listening to the gibberish coming out from his mouth.
Qing Shui took the chance and held Yiye Jiange softly. “Don’t move. I just want to hold you. I’m not thinking of other stuff in case you’re wondering.”
Yiye Jiange felt helpless and proceeded to hold his neck softly. She knew that her fate would be entangled with this man forever, but she didn’t want her fate to end up like that. When he promised to take her to the Lion King’s Ridge in three years time, she felt grateful, but she would never let him come along and risk his life for her.
“Qing Shui, did you go and visit Elder Sister Shi?”
Qing Shui was startled and replied, “You knew about it already!”
“I wasn’t sure about it! Can you explain a bit? Elder Sister Shi is also a woman with a pitiful past. She doesn’t have a family in this world anymore.” Yiye Jiange said calmly.
Qing Shui had no choice but to explain everything from the beginning, with the omission of Zhu Qing and the woman she liked before. He even told her about the time he was ‘drugged’ with sexual enhancing medicine and how he ended up being with her. After that she became sick, which Yiye Jiange was present at that time, so she knew about that stuff already.
“I support you and Elder Sister Shi being together.” Yiye Jiange said in a soft tone as she inched closer to his ear.
Her warm breath tingled his ear, causing him to cast his focus towards her delicate earlobe. Their lips almost touched each other when he turned to look at her. Then he asked her, “How about you?”
Yiye Jiange jolted for a moment and pushed Qing Shui away. Her face was slightly red as she replied, “I’m never going to marry to anyone. I will never marry!”
Qing Shui rubbed his nose. This was the first time she had shown such a big reaction to him. It seemed like the only way for her to open her heart completely to him would be to settle the matters with the Lion King’s Ridge first.
The distance between Yan Jiang Country and Cang Lang Country wasn’t that far, but they could reach their destination in no time due to the increased speed of their flying mounts. Luan Luan’s ‘Little Bai’ had grown stronger as well, gaining a speed multiple times faster than before.
Not only did Luan Luan gain a surge of power to her abilities, her demonic beasts had also become stronger as well. However, she did not plan on taking more demonic beasts or look for stronger ones until she became an Early Martial Emperor. Besides cultivating her martial techniques, she would also spend most of her time cultivating her spiritual energy.
In a few moments, they could see the border of the Cang Lang Country appearing on the horizon. When Yiye Jiange had recovered her composure. She looked at Qing Shui naturally and said, “You seem to like women who are older than you.
“Don’t get so worked up!” Yiye Jiange said quickly when she saw an exaggerated reaction from Qing Shui.
“Sister, so you knew about it all along…..”
Yiye Jiange was speechless. She stared at him for the longest time until he felt uncomfortable and gave a quick reply: “I like women who are a bit mature, like Jiange, for example……”
She curled a smile and kept staring at him without saying a word. Qing Shui gave up and shut his mouth, vowing to never tell her anything embarrassing ever again. He could not explain himself too well either. In any case, they were getting closer to the Skysword Sect, the structure of the building was becoming clearer in their line of sight.
After stopping halfway up the peak for a while, they continued towards the upper mountain. When they finally reached the peak of the mountain, Baili Jingwei and his companions were already waiting for their arrival. Qing Shui took a good look at the people surrounding Baili Jingwei, but Zhu Qing was nowhere to be seen.
“Old man!” Qing Shui smiled and went closer to greet Baili Jingwei.
“Haha, I’m so happy to see you all again, Qing Shui, Jiange, um…. This must be Luan Luan. She has grown up into a fine lady.” Baili Jingwei was especially delighted. The others followed and greeted the three of them as well.
Yiye Jiange felt very happy looking at these familiar people in the Skysword Sect. This place brought an endless happiness to her, at least more than what the Heavenly Palace could provide her. The Skysword Sect was somewhat special - this was like her home.
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