“Ye Xiuwen!” Qin Lingyu never expected that Jun Xiaomo’s saviour would actually be the mysterious First-Seat Disciple of Heavenly Peak, Ye Xiuwen. Ye Xiuwen was known to be a person who minded his own business after all.
Ye Xiuwen was clothed in snow-white garbs, and he now stood valiantly in front of Jun Xiaomo. The sword in his arm emitted mild humming sounds as it gleamed coldly. Even though Qin Lingyu could not make out Ye Xiuwen’s expressions because of his veiled conical hat, he knew that the sword intent which Ye Xiuwen released earlier was not a pretense. If Qin Lingyu had not retracted his arm at that very last moment, his arm might very well have been cleaved in half by now!
While both Qin Lingyu and Ye Xiuwen were at the peak twelfth level of Qi Mastery, Qin Lingyu could not match up to Ye Xiuwen in terms of combat prowess. In all the past Sect Ranking Competitions, Qin Lingyu had always lost out to Ye Xiuwen. Ye Xiuwen’s sword arts was simply too versatile, and they could be used for both offense and defense. There were even times where Foundation Establishment cultivators were unable to defeat Ye Xiuwen. How would Qin Lingyu even stand a chance?
Whilst Qin Lingyu’s talent could be considered high, one of the main reasons why he was able to attain the twelfth level of Qi Mastery by the age of twenty-two years had to do with the countless spiritual pills, medicine and herbs he had consumed over the years. Naturally, he could not compare with Ye Xiuwen who had painstakingly forged his own path through hard work and diligence. Just as much as how several female disciples were jealous of Jun Xiaomo’s privileged identity; several disciples in the Sect were equally as jealous of Ye Xiuwen’s cultivation and combat prowess.
Qin Lingyu was incredibly sore that he had time and again lost out to Ye Xiuwen. But at the same time, he did not feel threatened by his existence. Ye Xiuwen was the same as his master Jun Linxuan – they were like fanatics who only focused on their cultivation, and did not bother about external relations and politics or concern themselves with vying for power within the Sect. Qin Lingyu sincerely felt that people like that who did not know how to curry favour from others would sooner or later fall to the schemers around. Therefore, he never once placed Ye Xiuwen in his sights at all.
But Qin Lingyu never once considered the fact that absolute power foils all schemes – when one accumulates sufficient power, then he would become completely impervious to all forms of schemes and trickery.
Furthermore, Ye Xiuwen was also not the type of fool who would easily fall prey to the schemes of others to begin with.
Seeing Ye Xiuwen standing guard in front of Jun Xiaomo, Qin Lingyu furrowed his eyebrows. He never knew that they shared such a close relationship. A lot of treasures and spiritual pills in Qin Lingyu’s Interspatial Ring had been gifted to him by Jun Xiaomo, and he naturally did not wish to share his cash cow Jun Xiaomo with anyone else.
But this time, his hopes had clearly been dashed.
“Martial brother Ye!” Jun Xiaomo delightedly skipped over beside Ye Xiuwen, clinging onto Ye Xiuwen’s free arm. She smiled widely at Ye Xiuwen as she looked at Ye Xiuwen with a sprightly look. Anyone could tell that she was in a good mood from the way her eyes were curling up in joy right now.
Compared with how she treated Qin Lingyu earlier, the stark difference in her attitude was like heaven and earth.
Ye Xiuwen flicked his sword and sheathed it, turned his head and was momentarily stunned as he saw Jun Xiaomo’s bright, resplendent eyes staring back at him. Then, he sighed as he said with some exasperation, “You must have been so daring and brazen because you knew that I would be watching from the side, right?”
If he had not interfered earlier, or if he was not present today, then perhaps Jun Xiaomo might really have been seriously hurt by Qin Lingyu.
Jun Xiaomo stuck out her tongue as she retorted, “Sounds about right. But how would I have known that Qin Lingyu was such a lightweight – just a little bit of provocation and he’s already blown his top.”
Hearing this, the veins on Qin Lingyu head bulged and twitched slightly – How was this considered “a little bit of provocation?!” Qin Lingyu shot a cold glare towards Jun Xiaomo.
As though she heard her thoughts, Jun Xiaomo released Ye Xiuwen’s arm, crossed her arm and smiled sardonically at Qin Lingyu as she said, “What? Can’t this be called “a little bit of provocation”? Apart from not giving you those two fifth-grade Energy Rejuvenation Pills, I only tossed in a few words to annoy you a little bit. I didn’t even attack you or harm you in any way. On the other hand, you resorted to violence and even threatened to kill me just because you didn’t receive the Energy Rejuvenation Pills. Who’s the one who’s going overboard huh?!”
Qin Lingyu gradually composed himself and his rationality returned. He finally realized the potentially disastrous consequences of what he almost did in the heat of the moment.
It would not be a big problem if he hurt anyone else within the Sect. After all, the other party was also at fault, and he could still justify his actions. But the person he had almost hurt was Jun Xiaomo! With Jun Linxuan’s and Liu Qingmei’s legendary hot-tempered personalities, the consequences could certainly have been extremely dire.
Having come to this realization, his thoughts of the potential consequences sent shivers down his back.
“And besides…” Jun Xiaomo added, “Qin Lingyu, search your heart and tell me – just how much spirit treasures and pills have I given you to date? I’ve even trespassed the Sect’s forbidden grounds for you and almost lost my life there! And you? If you dare to say that you have any gratitude for what I’ve done for you all these years, then explain to me why you even had the gall to make an attempt at my life earlier?!”
As she finished, the mocking gaze in her eyes subsided and was replaced with a profoundly cold glare.
This was a type of refreshing, bleak coldness that accompanied the snuffing out of a once burning passion.
Qin Lingyu looked at Jun Xiaomo’s eyes which were now devoid of any affection and love, and instead replaced by a pitch-black solitude. It was almost akin to a bottomless abyss that could suck one’s soul in; and at the same time, it seemed like a mirror which reflected the ugliest side of a person’s character.
At this moment, Qin Lingyu suddenly felt very uncomfortable. He had thought that no matter what he had done, Jun Xiaomo would always wait patiently like a fool for him to return to her; and she would also willingly give all that she had without question to him.
Yet, after being put through the Sect’s punishment for trespassing the Sect’s forbidden grounds, Jun Xiaomo had suddenly grown wiser to the ways of the world. Most importantly, her eyes no longer revealed any trace of affection for him. Qin Lingyu had thought that this was a temporary change in her attitude – after all, how could a burning passion suddenly be snuffed out just like that. But as it turns out, things may be as he had feared.
Qin Lingyu had often scorned his marriage arrangement with Jun Xiaomo, because he felt that someone like Jun Xiaomo did not deserve someone like him. Therefore, he often fantasized about the day he would finally drain Jun Xiaomo dry of all her resources, and how he would then find a way to dissolve their marriage. Yet who would have thought the first person to withdraw from the marriage and want nothing to do with this relationship was in fact Jun Xiaomo.
As he put aside his discomfort for the moment, Qin Lingyu decided that he had to properly address the earlier incident to quash any chances that Jun Xiaomo might report this matter to Liu Qingmei or Jun Linxuan directly.
Qin Lingyu deliberated for a moment, before he mustered all the sincerity and humility that he could and said to Jun Xiaomo, “Xiaomo, I’m sorry, I was too rash earlier. What you said earlier was right – I had in fact taken all these things for granted. I’ve never forgotten how good you’ve been to me. But recently we’ve both been too busy with our own things that we’ve not had the chance to sit down and have a good talk. This naturally gave rise to the earlier misunderstanding between us. Let’s find some time to have a chat soon, shall we?”
Jun Xiaomo glanced over at Qin Lingyu, as she lifted her chin and said, “Alright, since you want to chat, then today is as good as any day. Let’s chat all we want right here, right now.”
Qin Lingyu looked at Ye Xiuwen as he stood beside Jun Xiaomo, saying, “Since this is a matter between the two of us, then perhaps I could ask martial brother Ye to excuse us for a moment.”
He felt terribly perturbed by the fact that Jun Xiaomo treated him coldly while she treated Ye Xiuwen with such warmth. In the past, Jun Xiaomo would always hover and flutter about Qin Lingyu; and now it seemed that Jun Xiaomo had shifted her attention to someone else.
This type of discomfort was different from jealousy. Rather, it was Qin Lingyu’s pride that prevented him from accepting that his own fiancée has had a change of heart. After all, female disciples within the Sect had always thrown themselves at him, and naturally he had a lot of confidence in his own charms. Therefore, how could he imagine Jun Xiaomo would one day grow to like a disfigured person who does not even show his real face in public?
Ye Xiuwen glanced over at Qin Lingyu indifferently as he said, “I think it would be for the best if I stayed. It wouldn’t be good if martial brother Qin had another bout of recklessness and acted impulsively again.”
Ye Xiuwen was also considered a person with a short fuse. Since he had slowly opened his heart to Jun Xiaomo and accepted the existence of this little martial sister, he would not let others take advantage of or bully Jun Xiaomo easily.
Qin Lingyu was stunned by Ye Xiuwen’s words. This was the first time he had come to learn that Ye Xiuwen also had a rather sharp tongue.
“That’s right. Martial brother Ye is my father’s First-Seat Disciple, and he’s just like my own brother. Since he’s my family, then he can’t really be considered an outsider. So, Qin Lingyu, you can just say whatever you have to say. Don’t beat about the bush.” Jun Xiaomo said impatiently as she grew increasingly annoyed at this man standing before her right now.
Qin Lingyu did not know whether to laugh or cry at this. Qin Lingyu had always been a haughty and proud man who looked down on Jun Xiaomo; yet today Jun Xiaomo had time and again trampled on his pride. Not only did his few instances of apologies to Jun Xiaomo meet with her indifference, she even gave him a few dirty looks. How could his pride take this!
“Fine, fine, fine!” Qin Lingyu said a string of “fine’s” as he lost his cool. He could no longer keep up the false pretenses and emotions on his face, and momentarily his face turned frigid and cold once again as he spoke sternly, “Jun Xiaomo, since you want to act like this, then you and your dear brother can go be “loving” to each other. Hmph, I only hope you don’t come back with any regrets!”
Qin Lingyu knew that Jun Xiaomo was a person who judged things by their appearances. Even though news of how the younger Jun Xiaomo was shocked by Ye Xiuwen’s true appearances was not very widespread, Qin Lingyu still managed to catch wind of it.
Perhaps Jun Xiaomo had forgotten all about Ye Xiuwen’s real appearances under the veiled conical hat, otherwise there was simply no explanation of how she could still bear to hang around him as though Ye Xiuwen were some sort of rare treasure.
And then one day, when Jun Xiaomo finally sees Ye Xiuwen’s true appearances under that veiled conical hat, she would definitely regret this day when she had rejected his good intentions just because of Ye Xiuwen.
Qin Lingyu analyzed the situation calmly, and he still maintained that Jun Xiaomo could not possibly fall for another person overnight. The more reasonable explanation for all of this is that she was using Ye Xiuwen to aggravate him.
If that was the case, then there was no longer any need for him to appease her at all costs. His pride would not let him take this any further anyway.
Thinking about these things, the frustrations in Qin Lingyu’s heart also subsided substantially. He gave Jun Xiaomo and Ye Xiuwen one final cold glare as he turned to leave.
He would wait patiently till the day where Jun Xiaomo comes crying back to him for forgiveness.
“See you, martial brother Qin. Don’t come back next time, you’re not welcome here~” Jun Xiaomo hollered at Qin Lingyu’s back. “Pfft!” At that moment, Jun Xiaomo erupted into an uproarious laughter.
As she burst out into laughter, Qin Lingyu’s strides grew wider as he departed with quickened pace.
Seeing all of this, Ye Xiuwen shook his head helplessly, as his lips curled into a slight smile as well.Previous Chapter Next Chapter