Under the effects of the Invisibility Talisman, Ye Xiuwen managed to successfully apprehend the Grand Elder and shatter the Chimeric Jade on his body without a hitch.
As the Grand Elder faded away into the formation array’s roiling fog, Ye Xiuwen did not even bother staying to fight. Instead, he immediately turned around and made his way back to Jun Xiaomo.
Without the protection of the Chimeric Jade, the Grand Elder was bound to suffer the same fate as everyone else – he would be trapped within the Dawn Sect’s protective formation array, only to have his body slowly drained of spiritual energy until it was finally dry and withered up.
With that, Ye Xiuwen began to make his way back in the direction where the spiritual energy was the thickest, and he soon arrived back at the heart of the formation array. As soon as he arrived, he saw Jun Xiaomo collapsed on the ground, completely unconscious.
“Xiaomo!” Ye Xiuwen quickly rushed forward and gently sat her up again as he checked on the condition of her meridians and Dantian.
In the end, she still failed to make good on her promise – she had overdrawn her energy, and her body was completely drained at this moment. Everything had been used to power the Sect’s protective formation array.
If Ye Xiuwen had not returned as quickly as he did, the consequences for Jun Xiaomo might have been dire.
“When will you stop forcing the issue like that?” Ye Xiuwen sighed as he tousled Jun Xiaomo’s hair before lifting her up horizontally.
He could no longer care about what happens to the Dawn Sect’s leaders. At this point in time, the only thought pressing on his mind was to find a safe place for his little martial sister to recover from her injuries. Otherwise, his little martial sister would be at risk of losing all of her hard-earned cultivation once more.
When Chen Feiyu and the rest saw Ye Xiuwen returning with an unconscious Jun Xiaomo, all of them were slightly taken aback.
They had waited such a long time for Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen that their patience had long worn thin, and they were even thinking of rushing in themselves to save their martial siblings. Fortunately, Ye Xiuwen and Jun Xiaomo reemerged from the forest just moments before their patience had worn out.
“What happened to martial sister Xiaomo?” Chen Feiyu took large strides forward and looked worriedly at Jun Xiaomo.
“She’s dealt with the Dawn Sect’s Sect Elders and Peakmasters all on her own. Unfortunately, in so doing, she has over-drafted her own energy and passed out.” Ye Xiuwen explained succinctly.
“This…” Chen Feiyu looked at Jun Xiaomo, completely speechless.
Those who were more familiar with Ye Xiuwen could tell that he was slightly upset at Jun Xiaomo.
It was evident that his anger had stemmed from everything that Jun Xiaomo had done, from concealing her identity, to shouldering the burden of dealing with the Dawn Sect’s leaders all on her own, and to how she had even over-drafted her own energy, nearly sacrificing own life for all she was trying to achieve.
Why can’t this little brat learn to take her own life seriously?!
Ye Xiuwen didn’t know what Jun Xiaomo had been through, and why she would treat her own life with such reckless abandon just to achieve her own goals.
That said, he knew that everything which Jun Xiaomo had done had caused him anger, exasperation, and some measure of heartache.
“Martial brother Ye, what should we do now? Will the people of Dawn Sect still be pursuing us?” Another Heavenly Peak disciple quipped in concern.
“They won’t be coming after us for the moment. Martial sister Xiaomo has trapped all of them within the Sect’s protective formation array.” Ye Xiuwen explicated, “Let’s find a safe place and lay low for now. Xiaomo has been dealt a grievous wound by the Grand Elder and her condition isn’t too good. Furthermore, she’s overdrawn her energy, and she appears to be hanging on by the skin of her teeth.”
“Alright, then we’d best be on our way quickly.” Chen Feiyu nodded his head and summoned the rest of the Heavenly Peak disciples. Then they adopted a defensive formation and surrounded Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen as they sped off into the distance.
As for the Teleportation Scroll, Ye Xiuwen stashed it once again in his Interspatial Ring. Now that they were certain nobody would be pursuing after them anytime soon, they knew that there was no longer a need for them to waste yet another Teleportation Scroll.
With that, Jun Xiaomo remained in a state of unconsciousness for three full days. On the dawn of the fourth day, she finally regained consciousness and opened her eyes again.
“This is…” Jun Xiaomo blinked her eyes wearily as she looked at the unfamiliar décor around her. For a single second there, she was unable to tell whether she was still in a dream or whether she had finally returned to reality.
She had the vague impression that she had just experienced an arduously long-drawn dream that was filled with grotesque and variegated scenes. Yet when she awakened from the dream itself, she could no longer recall a single thing about those dreams.
At this moment, all she knew was that she had been asleep for a long time, and she had been dreaming a lot.
“Ungh…” She rubbed her throbbing temples as she struggled to sit up. Then, it took Jun Xiaomo some time before she managed to finally suppress the nausea that was relentlessly swelling up from the depths of her stomach.
The things around feel real. I’m no longer dreaming.
Seems like I’m still a little bit overdrawn. Jun Xiaomo grimaced.
Squeak. The door opened, and a person dressed in green entered the room. Jun Xiaomo looked up immediately, but the person who just entered the room was not the person she was hoping to see.
“Ah! Little martial sister, you’re finally awake! That’s great news! I’ve got to let everyone know!” The person who had entered his room exclaimed in joy and delight.
“Martial brother Zhou? So, it’s you…um, about that, where’s martial brother Ye?” Jun Xiaomo hesitated for a moment before asking the question that was weighing on her heart.
She had hoped very much that the first person she would see when she first came to would be Ye Xiuwen. How could she have expected the first person she saw to be another Heavenly Peak disciple, Zhou Huaqing instead?
“Oh, martial brother Ye? He’s attending to something right now, and he’ll be here later on.” Zhou Huaqing chuckled dryly as he vaguely glossed over his response.
It had to be mentioned that all of the Heavenly Peak disciples took after Jun Linxuan in more ways than one, and they would never do anything to obscure the contemplations of their heart. Thus, how could Jun Xiaomo not be aware of the contrived expression on Zhou Huaqing’s face? However, she trusted everyone from the Heavenly Peak. She was not going to force them to give an answer if they were not prepared to disclose something.
This was a form of basic trust and respect.
That said, Zhou Huaqing felt rather guilty about all of this because he was evidently concealing something from Jun Xiaomo. Thus, he simply looked back at Jun Xiaomo sheepishly, completely lost for words.
Just like that, the atmosphere in the room became sullen and awkward.
“Oh, that’s right!” Zhou Huaqing smacked his head as he finally found something else to talk about to defuse the awkwardness in the air, “Martial sister Xiaomo, you’re amazing. Just a little while ago, we were all completely unaware of just what you had done to the leaders of the Dawn Sect. But now, we’ve just heard some news on the grapevine that the Sect Elders and the Peakmasters have all experienced a fall in their cultivation by a few qualitative levels. Furthermore, their Sect Leader has gone missing entirely. The latest news is that everyone around seems to be eyeing the Dawn Sect’s territory and their wealth right now.
Jun Xiaomo smiled and chuckled as she responded, “That’s only natural. After all, when have these self-professed upstanding and sanctimonious sects ever acted with any restraint? The only thing they know to do is to seize and steal the wealth of others under the pretext of a righteous crusade. Didn’t their targets include the Heavenly Peak earlier? Right now, they’ve turned their eyes away only because a larger target has just presented itself.”
“That’s true! Back then, we were truly blind to have thought that the Sect Leader and the Sect Elders were upstanding and righteous people. But now, after this incident, we’ve finally seen for ourselves their vile, disgusting characters.” Zhou Huaqing huffed indignantly. The close brush with death in the forbidden grounds had snapped them right back to their senses – not all spiritual cultivators were morally good; and not all demonic cultivators were morally bad. Everything depended on how they used their abilities.
Jun Xiaomo sighed and grew taciturn.
Wasn’t she once like that as well? It was only after she had experienced an entire lifetime of mistakes that she came to her present realization of the whole truth.
The atmosphere grew tense and heavy once more. Zhou Huaqing discovered that ever since Jun Xiaomo had awakened, her spirits had somewhat been downcast. Even after he informed her about the tragic predicament that the leaders of the Dawn Sect had found themselves in, Jun Xiaomo had remained just as unmoved, and there was hardly any trace of joy or delight in her expressions at all.
Zhou Huaqing scratched his head; he had never been too good with matters of the heart to begin with. Seeing his little martial sister like this truly made his head hurt. Should I ask for reinforcements in this regard?
Or does this simply mean that little martial sister only wants to see martial brother Ye right now? Zhou Huaqing’s eyes brightened – he seemed to have seen the light.
But, martial brother Ye is currently…
As soon as he thought about where Ye Xiuwen could be right now, Zhou Huaqing began to find himself caught between a rock and a hard place.
Just as he was deliberating about what to do next, the door squeaked and opened once more.
Jun Xiaomo’s spirits were indeed rather low right now, so when she lifted her head and noticed another person standing at the door, her eyes instantly widened with a pleasant surprise.
It’s martial brother Ye!
As soon as Ye Xiuwen entered the room, he was similarly greeted with a pleasant surprise. Just a few days ago, Jun Xiaomo had been lying on the bed completely motionless, and her life was evidently hanging by just a thread; but now, she was staring straight back at him with an equal measure of surprise. Instantly, a wave of warmth washed through his heart.
Seems like it was the right decision to enter this valley. Otherwise, how could Xiaomo have recovered from her injuries so quickly?
Ye Xiuwen immediately walked into the room with an expectant gait.
Zhou Huaqing had already slipped out of the room as soon as he noticed the stark change in Jun Xiaomo’s expressions – Seems like only martial brother Ye can coax little martial sister here. I’d best be on my way and let everyone else know the good news that little martial sister has already come to!
Ye Xiuwen walked towards Jun Xiaomo’s bedside, pulled a stool over and sat beside her.
“You’re finally awake?” Ye Xiuwen chuckled lightly as he quipped. His eyes were filled with a genial gaze.
Even though he had earlier been thoroughly infuriated by Jun Xiaomo’s behaviour, his anger had already substantially dissipated over the last three days that Jun Xiaomo had been unconscious.
Over the last three days, Ye Xiuwen slowly came to the realization that nothing else really mattered as long as Jun Xiaomo could regain her consciousness once more. After all, everything was already in the past, was it not? All he had to do in future was to remind Jun Xiaomo time and again not to recklessly put her life in danger; was there really a need to pick on what she had done in the past and berate her for it?
Furthermore, they could take things one step at a time and deal with the matters in future when they arose.
Meanwhile, Jun Xiaomo had wholeheartedly longed to see Ye Xiuwen again before their present reunion. However, when Ye Xiuwen finally sat in front of her like he did right now, she suddenly found herself completely at a loss for some strange reason.
She had never expected to feel this lost.
Could they have grown distant to each other after all these years of being apart? But weren’t they getting along just fine earlier when her martial brother Ye was still Jun Ziwen?
Then, when she began to contemplate the matters that had occurred while Ye Xiuwen was still Jun Ziwen, Jun Xiaomo felt a hot wave of embarrassment wash over her face.
Back then, she had even made the outrageous declaration that she and Jun Ziwen have done the deed between married couples. How would her martial brother Ye view her after all of that?
Would he think of her as a cheap woman? But that was an explanation that she had to come up with in the spur of the moment; would her martial brother Ye be able to understand all of that?
Jun Xiaomo’s mind was in a mess, and her thoughts were all over the place. Yet at the same time, she felt that none of these thoughts could be shared and discussed with Ye Xiuwen in an open space.
Thus, she could only lower her head with some measure of embarrassment.
Ye Xiuwen noticed the change in Jun Xiaomo’s eyes – she had earlier been looking at him with delighted expectancy, yet now she had lowered her head so much that all he could see was the whorl on the top of her head. Ye Xiuwen’s eyes darkened slightly.
“What are you thinking about?” Ye Xiuwen rapped Jun Xiaomo’s head lightly.
Jun Xiaomo clutched at her head in pain as she looked back up with an accusatory, aggrieved expression.
“I’m still recovering from my injuries! Martial brother Ye, aren’t you afraid that I’ll pass out again if you knock my head like that?”
Ye Xiuwen smiled mischievously, “If I didn’t give you a good knock on the head, wouldn’t you remain sullen until the end of time?”
Jun Xiaomo muttered, “It’s because we’ve just been reunited under such conditions, and I didn’t know where to begin…”
Ye Xiuwen pinched Jun Xiaomo’s cheeks lightly as he retorted, “Can this really be considered ‘just reunited’? I wonder who’s been concealing her identity all this while, hmm?”
As Ye Xiuwen spoke, the smile on his face began to give way to his imposing, older-martial-brother disposition.
Jun Xiaomo coughed twice dryly, “That…I was only forced by circumstances back then…”
She truly felt rather guilt-ridden for keeping her identity concealed all this time.
That said, it was precisely because of such a digression that the air of awkwardness between the two vanished completely into thin air.
Slowly, Jun Xiaomo heaved a sigh of relief.Previous Chapter Next Chapter