“Oh? What about it is good?” asked the High Priest with a smile.
“It’s good in that… it’s free.” Long Chen also smiled.
“Hahaha,” laughed the High Priest.
“Hehe, it was just a joke. If I were to compare your wine to a painting, then last time, the wine you gave me was a vast masterpiece containing every aspect of the world and endless profundities. However, my cultivation base was too low to comprehend those profundities. Yet this time, you didn’t give me a painting but a white piece of paper. You also provided every possible color of the paint. The first one was too profound for me to understand, and even if I did, I would only be able to copy it. But now you’ve given me my own canvas and paint, along with the hundred flavors of life, so I can plot and extrapolate my own Dao onto it. I can clearly sense the difference between the two realms contained within your first and second wines. The former was a shaped demonstration, while the latter is a shapeless teaching.”
Last time, because the High Priest’s wine contained a realm that was far too distant from his level, Long Chen could only feel that he was extremely minute, and he didn’t gain anything.
This time, the High Priest’s realm had clearly increased to a whole new level. Before, his wine was vast like a sea, surging with such power that only peerless experts could control it. Now, his wine was a clear spring, and the water could be drawn up at will. Although the opening to the spring looked small, who knew how vast the source of its water was? Who would dare to say for sure that the source of the spring was not just as vast as a sea?
One looked vast, but while it looked big, it had to have an end.
The other looked smaller and more reserved, but had a limitless foundation. The possibilities that existed for it were limitless.
“Hahaha, no wonder you were capable of shaking the entire Eastern Xuan Region. This perception is quite terrifying. I gave all my Wine God Palace’s disciples a chance to taste this new wine, but none of them were capable of putting it like this,” praised the High Priest.
“Hehe, that’s because I’m examining it from the viewpoint of someone outside the Wine Dao. When I drink this wine, I am a blank piece of paper. But their papers already have their colors on them, which have restricted their cultivation paths. That’s why they can only see things related to their own paths. High Priest, this wine is a priceless treasure to me. This state of clear-mindedness can allow me to extrapolate many things. So about that…” Long Chen laughed mischievously, his meaning obvious.
The High Priest laughed, “Even if we had no relationship, I would have to reward you for evaluating the essence of my wine. Tell me, how much do you want?”
“Hehe, you know me. I’m not greedy. However much you want to give, I’ll take.” Long Chen’s skin was definitely as thick as a city wall.
In one way, it sounded like Long Chen wouldn’t mind no matter how much the High Priest gave, but the real meaning was that Long Chen wanted as much as he could have.
The High Priest didn’t mind. He took out two-foot-tall jugs. “This wine is extremely difficult to make. Of nine jugs, six failed and are essentially poison wine. Only three succeeded. If you like it, you can take them all.”
This wine was so difficult to make that even the High Priest wasn’t able to have a high success rate from creating it. The poison wine’s realm had become muddled, and a person who drank might become insane.
“Many thanks, High Priest.” Long Chen was delighted. He naturally wanted it. This was practically divine wine to him.
He could use this wine’s special ability to create his own magical arts. The most marvelous aspect of this wine was the clear-minded state it allowed someone to enter. It gave them a blank piece of paper.
Long Chen could add his own paint to this blank paper to test things. If the test failed, that was fine. He would retreat from that realm and enter again. It was like switching out to another blank piece of paper.
Long Chen graciously accepted the two new jugs and the original jug the High Priest had taken out. The original was half empty, but his skin was still thick enough to take it. Standing on courtesy? No, that wasn’t Long Chen’s style.
“I should be thanking you. Your brazen thinking has benefited me greatly,” said the High Priest.
As Long Chen and the High Priest were talking, the sound of footsteps rang out from outside. Xia Yunchong and Xia Youluo had arrived.
Xia Yunchong still looked the same, but his aura had become more reserved. He had reached the Soul Transformation realm. Because he had just advanced, his aura was in the midst of slowly condensing. He was about to reach the first Heavenstage.
As for Xiao Youluo, she was still as beautiful as ever, but that arrogance and willfulness of a princess had vanished, replaced with maturity and humility.
Although the Xia Youluo in front of him was much easier to be friends with, Long Chen still preferred that willful girl. Sometimes, a person’s flaws would be more memorable than their strong points. Perhaps this was individuality.
However, individuality would often change through the baptism of time and trials. To adapt to life, it might vanish forever.
“It’s been a few days, but the two of you are as graceful as ever. That’s worthy of celebration, so come, let me treat you to some wine.” Long Chen beckoned the two of them. Being unconstrained when it came to old friends would make them feel closer.
The High Priest smiled and left, leaving this place for the three of them to reminisce.
“Long Chen, I really missed you.” Once the High Priest was gone, there was no need to be constrained at all. Hence, Xia Yunchong charged forward and gave Long Chen a hug.
From the start, the two of them had been like brothers. Xia Yunchong walked the Undefeatable Dao, and his character was very similar to Long Chen’s.
Now that they met again, although Xia Yunchong had reached the Soul Transformation realm while Long Chen was stuck at the peak of Jade Core, the difference between the two had only grown greater. Now Long Chen was the fiercest figure in the Eastern Xuan Region.
Long Chen hugged back. Suddenly, he let go and turned to Xia Youluo. “Come, little girl, give your big uncle a hug.”
Xia Youluo immediately turned red. She hadn’t even decided whether she wanted to or not, but Long Chen had already embraced her.
Xia Youluo trembled slightly. In his embrace, she felt warmer and safer than she had ever felt before.
Back then, it had been her selfishness that had resulted in her becoming a bargaining chip against Xia Yunchong’s Undefeatable Dao in the Four Nations Ancient Remnant.
Whenever she felt remorse, helplessness, and loneliness, it was this embrace that made her feel warm. Now that she was in it again, everything that had happened back then came rushing back toward her.
The bickering when they had first met on the streets, the con that they had done in the Wine God Palace, the imperial banquet, the fight outside the palace, all those scenes surfaced one by one like she was reliving them.
Just as Xia Youluo was lost in her memories, Long Chen let go of her, returning her to reality. Having lost his embrace, she felt an indescribable feeling of loss.
Now, Long Chen was dragging Xia Yunchong into the room and taking out his wine. Xia Youluo simply followed and sat beside Xia Yunchong silently.
Xia Yunchong glanced at her. Sensing the change in her emotions, he couldn’t help but feel sad for her.
Ever since Xia Youluo had tried to kill herself and Long Chen had saved her, she had matured overnight, practically becoming a new person. To not be arrogant, to not be willful, to become hardworking and earnest, these were good things. But Xia Yunchong knew that her heart would forever have a person’s figure within it. He had tried persuading her to find her own happiness.
However, her response was that she wouldn’t fall in love with anyone. She wouldn’t marry anyone either, or if she really had to, she would only do it for the Grand Xia Ancient Nation. She would forever be loyal to the Grand Xia’s people to repay them for her sins.
Xia Youluo thought that it was a stain on her life to have liked one of the Grand Han’s princes. Now she liked Long Chen, but because of that stain, she felt inferior, feeling like she wasn’t a match for him. Hence, she would rather live out her days alone.
Her reaction upon seeing Long Chen further proved that. However, she didn’t allow herself to have any fanciful dreams. This made Xia Yunchong’s heart ache for her, but he was also helpless. The things called emotions were sometimes simply unsolvable.
“Brother Yunchong, what’s happening with the Grand Han? Are they provoking you?” asked Long Chen, getting to the point.
Xia Yunchong’s expression immediately sank. Even Xia Youluo’s expression became unsightly.
“Fu…” Xia Yunchong wanted to swear, but he didn’t end up saying it in front of his sister. However, there was a verb and a noun in the swear he wanted to make.
“These shameless bastards ended up finding a nest full of bastards. And now, more and more bastards come out to humiliate us. I wanted to use martial force to crush them! Those idiots, they’re just asking for a beating!” raged Xia Yunchong. If this wasn’t the Wine God Palace, he might have crushed the table in his anger.
“My imperial father says that this matter isn’t so simple. The Grand Han is now just a pretense, and dealing with them is useless. We have to find a way to handle whoever is acting behind the scenes, or anything else would be useless. Acting rashly would only make things worse. Long Chen, what do you think?” asked Xia Youluo.
“Me? I’ve got an idea. Let’s go. Time is tight and this mission’s important.” Long Chen stood.
It seemed that he was destined to always be working. Now he would have to be a free fighter again.Previous Chapter Next Chapter