Chapter 156: The Curtain Drops [Volume 3 - The Place Where My Heart Feels At Peace]
Qiqi looked even more lost than she was before. It was true that she had thought of Yu Yingnan when she made the decision to march toward the Dongling Mountain Area, but it was fury at being manipulated and controlled that drove her more. In the end, though, be it dead or alive, she didn’t find Qianye at Earth Castle.
That night, when she returned to the Yin Family’s side residence and looked towards the shore from the waterside pavilions, she saw Qianye walking out of the thick mist like he had returned from another world. Therefore, she only told him the thing she wanted to tell him the most: “I’m very happy seeing that you’re alright.”
But something happened yet again before Qiqi could figure out a reason. On the same night, Wei Potian charged into the Song Household’s camp. Even from the other side of the short mountain ridge, one could see misty blue light and star-like brilliance striking against each other and illuminating the mountainous woods underneath the moon. Both Wei Potian and Song Zining’s observers had to show up before they finally managed to pull the duo apart.
Qiqi sat under the sky, hugged her knees close and placed her head at the top. While staring at the origin lights flickering on and off on the other side of the mountain, she sighed softly, “To think that Potian’s Sky Shattering Bright Fist is starting to look a little shapely in such a short time frame. I guess we all need to work harder.”
Wei Potian had already shown her the “bright” part of his fist technique ten days ago when he had sparred against her. Tonight, it would seem that he had at least achieved the ability to manifest his origin powers, judging from the sparkling starlight that was illuminating the night’s sky, even if the “sky shattering” part of his fist technique was still missing.
Qianye was currently sleeping like a pig inside the tent. It wasn’t that he didn’t notice the commotion outside, but he couldn’t help but feel a wave of powerlessness when he heard that Wei Potian had actually mounted a raid on the Song household’s camp. In the end, he decided to ignore everything and get a good night’s rest. When his wounds were fully healed, he would have more strength to punch or kick a certain someone!
Surprisingly, a healthy, active and pleased Young Master Wei showed up at the Yin Family’s camp during the next day. In fact, Ye Mulan, who had been inside Song Zining’s tent at the time, was the one who had suffered a moderate amount of injury. Everyone had to admit that the secret art “Thousand Mountains” was truly impressive.
Qiqi had only two words to describe her feelings, and that was “hell yes!”. Qianye had nothing to say.
After the messy fight between the Song, Wei, and Yin Families, no one knew which family would become the next target. A series of conflicts, probes and attacks later, internal strife became the first of everyone’s priority once more. The situation ultimately evolved into a civil war.
Song Zining never suffered a loss again after that one time his camp was intruded by Wei Potian. Despite the chaotic situation that embroiled every family, he was able work his way around like a fish that had returned to the water. He paid little attention to hunting and simply focused on wandering around the fringes of the hunting ground and raiding anyone who gave him the opportunity to do so. He cared nothing about the identities of the ambushed.
Luck seemed to be standing on Song Zining’s side, because he was always able to attack his opponents at their most careless moments, or strike at their weakest link seemingly without a thought. Even Kong Yanian was severely injured by him.
Speaking of which, the year had been unlucky for Kong Yanian. He had been resting inside his tent during the sneak attack, and after the Song household’s hunting team had sneaked close to the tents, they chose not to attack the campsite directly like they used to and instead threw a few origin hand grenades inside! Three out of four of the hand grenades just happened to fall around Kong Yanian’s tent. One of them had even rolled inside.
Never in his wildest dreams did Kong Yanian imagine that disaster would quite literally land on his lap one day. He immediately charged out of the other side of the tent when he saw the rolling grenade, but that also meant he bumped head first into the center of explosion of the other three grenades and suffered heavy injuries as a result. The coincidence was so that not even the observer managed to save Kong Yanian in time.
Kong Yanian could only lament his bad luck when he investigated the matter in detail later on. After all, Song Zining had neither shown his face nor thrown the hand grenades himself. He had simply instructed his bodyguards to throw a few grenades; who could’ve known that the security of the Kong Family’s campsite was so shoddy?
To borrow the words of an elderly man beside Duke Wei, the act was the equivalent of firing a hand cannon at the Empire’s Endless Palace and actually hitting it. It was practically inconceivable.
After Qianye had recovered enough to move around, he joined the Yin Family’s hunting team and continued to hunt for points. Although he couldn’t fight in melee just yet, using his sniper rifle was no longer a burden to him. As it turned out, the Yin Family was currently the strongest and most well-supplied hunting team of the spring hunt, so their points simply skyrocketed past the rest of the aristocratic families and entered top five in no time at all.
When Wei Potian noticed that his position in the ranking list was somewhat precarious, he immediately made a huge fuss in great panic. He immediately sought out Qiqi and begged her with excessively good manners and submissive postures to fulfill the promise of their alliance.
In the end, Qiqi gave him Ji Yuanjia and two bodyguards to speed up the accumulation of his points. Ji Yuanjia and his men would first beat their prey half dead before chasing them to the young master of Wei so that he could mete out the fatal blow. This was practically undisguised cheating, but since none of the observers were willing to enforce the rules they simply closed their eyes at his rascally actions. The matter was left unsettled just like that.
And so, the most important phase of the Profound Heaven Spring Hunt had finally drawn its curtains after a few sensational days.
The first place of the spring hunt was ultimately dominated by the Zhao household once more. With only his Silver Winged Fantasy by his side, Zhao Junhong had gone straight into the deepest depths of the Profound Heaven Mountain alone and forcefully pushed the Zhao household to the top almost single-handedly. He had killed as many as sixteen dark race members who were rank six and above.
Song Zining’s side was the most lively of them all. He had attacked nearly half the aristocratic families that were present in the spring hunt, and almost all them were crippled after one sneak attack. However, the Song household only sat at fifth place despite his glamorous accomplishments. It wasn’t actually a surprise because humans didn’t give points; only prey did. The Song household ultimately had to bear taking only the fifth spot.
No one dared to ridicule the Song household because of their ranking, however. The aristocratic families who were paid a “visit” during the spring hunt were entirely silent, and the ones who escaped their notice inwardly thanked their good fortunes. What Song Zining displayed through a series of bedazzling offenses was in fact his astounding military talent. Every big shot who was watching the spring hunt, including Duke Wei, were pleasantly surprised by his skills.
House Wei sat at the second place of the spring hunt. The biggest reason he was able to take up the spot was because powerful contenders such as the Nangong Family and Kong Family were unable to mount a proper follow up. Qiqi’s assistance was also a huge factor. Ji Yuanjia had once again proved himself to be a rare talent whose ability to snatch prey or attack his enemies were all outstanding.
The Yin Family’s points had risen steadily and ultimately ended at third place.
The Nangong Family sat at the fourth place. Nangong Wanyun had lost half her men in one go after being ambushed by Song Zining, and she was attacked by both Qiqi and Wei Potian later on. That was why she had failed to get any points at all during the final two days of the spring hunt.
The Profound Heaven Spring Hunt of the Empire’s calendar year 2331 was destined to stand out in the history books.
The number of fatalities and serious injuries that had happened during the spring hunt was unusually high this time. Even the core descendants on the protected list had suffered a moderate amount of injuries. This year’s spring hunt was definitely the most chaotic spring hunt to date where the rankings fluctuated massively like they were on a roller coaster.
The participants were given three days of rest after the real combat on the hunting grounds had ended. For this year’s Profound Heaven Spring Hunt participants, this period of rest and recuperation was especially necessary.
Qianye followed the Yin Family’s hunting team back to the town-like spring hunt main camp and returned to the side residence assigned to the Yin Family. Nominally speaking, he was staying in the room just outside Qiqi’s master bedroom, but in reality a bodyguard’s single room in the inner courtyard had been prepared for him.
Qiqi became busy with work. The spring hunt was an important social event in the Empire, and the aristocratic descendants who had fought each other in a civil war earlier seemed to have tossed the bloodiness of the hunting field to the back of their minds, and started networking with each other once more. Maybe it was because she had a tonne of serious business to deal with, but Qiqi never asked Qianye to dress in the same traditional clothing as her and meet people since then.
There was a lush ancient tree about several hundred years old in the back garden that Qianye really liked. It had a gigantic canopy that covered almost one quarter of the garden. Qianye would often climb to the top of the tree and look at the sky, and once he sat down, he wouldn’t move away until at least half the day had passed.
There was a time Qiqi had came over to ask him what he was looking at after she was finished with her work. Qianye pointed at the sky and said, “I’m looking at the sky.”
“What’s so nice about the sky?” Qiqi was very puzzled.
Qianye smiled, “The sky on the Evernight Continent isn’t like this. The sunlight there isn’t as warm or persistent as here either.”
Qiqi looked at him strangely and asked, “You aren’t planning to become a poet, are you?”
Qianye laughed loudly and said, “A futureless job like that doesn’t suit me at all!”
Qiqi placed a hand on Qianye’s shoulder and advised him in a very manly manner, “Beauty, your smile is very unladylike, you know?”
Qianye replied softly, “How should I smile then? Like this?” He suddenly gave her a smile that was as pure as crystal, but didn’t appear feminine at all. At first glance, he actually looked younger and gave off the impression of a friendly neighbor boy.
The massive change in his temperament caught Qiqi completely off guard, and while she was stunned, Qianye suddenly extended a hand, held her neck and moved his lips towards hers!
Qiqi screamed, “What are you doing?!” She subconsciously tried to push Qianye away.
But the second Qianye put strength into his arm, Qiqi immediately felt like a huge animal had knocked into her back. Her body fell involuntarily into Qianye’s arms!
She felt completely powerless as she watched Qianye’s face approaching closer and closer. In panic, the only thing she seemed capable of doing was to close her eyes and wait quietly for that moment to arrive. But although she could feel Qianye’s warm breath on her skin, the soft touch that she imagined didn’t arrive.
Qiqi’s small mouth was suddenly flicked once by Qianye’s fingers. Then, she heard him laugh, “You shouldn’t make a joke like this if you can’t take it, you know?”
Qiqi opened her eyes, and noticed that Qianye’s beautiful face was very, very close to her own. If he leaned even a little bit forwards, the two of them would be kissing each other already. However, this damnable bastard simply maintained the short distance between them, and Qiqi could sense that there was something wrong with her posture.
“What is wrong, exactly?”
She immediately discovered the problem later: she had actually pursed her lips unconsciously! What was she doing; she couldn’t possibly be looking forward to it, could she?
Qiqi suddenly grew angry and pushed Qianye away strongly. She said coldly, “Let’s see if you’re really up for the challenge then! Your sleeping place tonight is my room!”
Qianye smiled and replied, “Make it some other time. There’s something that I need to think about tonight.”
“Think about what?” Qiqi looked a little curious.
“About the future, and how to beat Zhao Junhong.”
Qiqi fell silent for a moment before asking, “Are you really planning to beat him?”
Qiqi looked at Qianye seriously before she said slowly, “I think you’ve changed.”
Qianye exhaled deeply, “Maybe a little.”
“And why’s that?”
Qianye smiled carelessly and said, “Maybe it’s because I took a walk around death’s door again. It made me think about a lot of things that I didn’t think through.”
Qiqi was silent for another moment before she finally asked, “Did you think that I wouldn’t show up and save you?”
Qianye nodded, and then shook his head. He answered honestly, “I never thought about it.”
“You mean you never thought that I would come, or you never held any hope in the first place?”
Suddenly, a sense of loss began to spread in Qiqi’s heart once more.Previous Chapter Next Chapter