Category Archives: The Good-For-Nothing Cultivator


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Chapter 43: The Misty Desolate Valley

Heavens Ridge Villa.

At this moment, the council of the grand elders was having a meeting.

Celestial Shi Guanyin was lamenting, “Look at our sect leader. She is already our sect leader and yet, we didn’t even catch a sight of her anywhere.”

Wang Ming, fourth realm immortal celestial and grand elder of the White Spirit Hall nodded, “Precisely. She should be coming here more often.”

Wang Ming used to be the grand elder of the Crystal Cloud Spirit Hall and had just recently taken over the White Spirit Hall. It turned out that it was not that hard for him to take over the White Spirit Hall after all.

It was not actually his credit but mainly due to Sect Leader Qin Keqin who had defeated Supremacy Wen Hongguang that caused the protégés of the White Spirit Hall to be in awe of her.

In the celestial realm, cultivation strength and martial strength ruled over all else. Because Qin Keqin could prove that she could defeat even a sixth realm expert like Supremacy Wen Hongguang, her position and status within the clan was suddenly firm.

Moreover this time round the Heavens Ridge Villa had soundly shamed the Solitary Manor who had been their main rival for centuries.

Celestial Kong Guxin, Yun Xing and Mu Han were all looking awkwardly at each other. In just a matter of a few weeks, Celestial Shi Guanyin seemed to have changed her opinion of Qin Keqin and was even lamenting for her whereabouts.

This turnabout was indeed very weird.

However they did not say anything.

Yun Xing said, “Grand Elder Ouyang Xue is unable to attend our meeting today. It is because she is out on an experiential mission.”

“Oh?” Celestial Shi Guanyin said, “So is my core protégé Leng Qiuyue…”

Mu Han added with a wry smile, “I’ve heard that both of them have actually requested to Elder Bu Ming to up the difficulty of their experiential mission. Therefore they got what their wish for and they have to hunt down a fifth rank desolate beast in order to complete their experiential mission.”

Celestial Shi Guanyin was startled as she asked, “Are you sure about this?”

Mu Han answered solemnly, “I am sure. I have just met Elder Bu Ming and he had told me about it. Moreover, our Senior Brother Lu is also in this experiential mission.”

Celestial Shi Guanyin said with a surprise look, “Our Senior Brother Lu is also in this experiential mission?” This was actually a playacting from her. It was because she had already gotten wind from Elder Bu Ming that Lu Qingyun would be in the experiential mission some days ago.

She quickly said, “This is too ridiculous. Who authorizes this? This may be out of their league and moreover our Senior Brother Lu will also be in danger. How do we answer to our sect leader should he comes to harm?”

Mu Huan smiled bitterly, “I’ve heard that it is Grand Elder Ouyang Xue that forces Elder Bu Ming to increase the difficulty. But of course, it is your Leng Qiuyue that was the first to suggest it.”

Celestial Shi Guanyin was burning with rage, “The two of them are too reckless. I know that they are rivals but this is simply too ridiculous. We got to stop this experiential mission right away.”

Mu Han smiled bitterly, “It is already too late. They had already left for the Misty Desolate Valley three days ago.”

Celestial Shi Guanyin: …

Although she had specifically instructed Elder Bu Ming in secret not to pick a difficult experiential mission for Leng Qiuyue and Lu Qingyun, she did not know the exact start date of the experiential mission. To her, this was only a trivial matter so she was not particularly mindful.

But now, she was a little panicky for Leng Qiuyue and Lu Qingyun!

The Celestial Realm was just the middle realm between the lower Mundane Realm and the upper Immortal Realm.

The Nine Celestial Fraternity was one of the many celestial fraternities that were in the Celestial Realm and was the biggest celestial fraternity that consisted of ten vast divine realms.

The Celestial Realm was unlike the lower Mundane Realm where there were vast oceans and lands. The entire Celestial Realm was consisted of endless lofty mountains and it was thousands of times bigger than the lower Mundane Realm.

The many celestial clans and populations were situated high above the mountains. Usually the powerful celestial clans would be situated on mountains that were rich in spiritual veins that were refined by rich deposits of jadeites. That would be the most ideal place for cultivation. Other than spiritual veins and jadeites, mountains that were rich in silver and gold celestiums were also ideal, since silver and gold celestiums were very much needed to make precious weapons.

Below the mountains, were thick desolate mists and endless bottomless valleys that were filled with many powerful desolate monsters. The spiritual force below the desolate mists was poor and unsuitable for cultivation. Moreover the presence of the desolate forces was too overwhelming and could easily corrupt a cultivator inner core. However because of this very same reason, it was the ideal place for the desolate monsters that fed upon it.

In a way, the desolate mists acted as a natural barrier between the desolate beasts below and the divine beasts that dwelled high in the mountains.

The desolate force below the mountains had actually come from the same mountain veins as the spiritual veins that the cultivators depend upon. The only difference was that this desolate force could actually be refined by the rich deposits of jadeites in the mountains and by the purifying aura above the mountains that were continuously cleansed by the divine lightning.

From time to time, there would always be a possibility that a powerful desolate monster would emerged from the valley below.

The richer the spiritual force in the mountains, the weaker the desolate force that was at the bottom. Therefore it was not wrong to say that spiritual rich mountains usually do not have powerful desolate beasts below the desolate mists.

Since New Empyrean City was just a second tier celestial area, there were plenty of powerful middle tier desolate beasts that dwelled in the desolate mists below and one of the most dangerous places around the vicinity of New Empyrean City was the Misty Desolate Valley.

At this moment, Lu Qingyun and his party had already reached the vicinity of the Misty Desolate Valley.

Except for Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue, the moods of the rest of the protégés were solemn indeed. Even Lie Xingyuan looked a little unhappy as she heaved melancholy sighs along the way.

It was because everyone knew that they were heading toward a certain unknown destination that may well cost them their lives.

Although they could gain plenty of clan contributions for this difficult experiential mission but none of the ordinary protégés were actually rejoicing. It was because they had to first ‘survive’ the outcome first.

It was well known to them that some of the core protégés spared no good morals as they used the ordinary protégés as cannon fodders for them to defeat the powerful desolate beasts and to gain for themselves the clan contribution points at the expense of the others.

Clan contribution points were an important contribution in the Heavens Ridge Villa where the protégés could use to buy rare celestial resources for themselves to further their cultivation and to gain access to spirit arrays that could aid them to overcome their celestial realm levels.

Rushuang was smiling bitterly as she followed Leng Qiuyue as her personal attendant. She had thought that she was fortunate to be Leng Qiuyue’s personal attendant after her decision to leave Tang Bufan. But to think that this Leng Qiuyue would be so crazy enough to request for a more difficult experiential mission…

She really did not want to die in this experiential mission…

Ouyang Xue had come alone as she currently had no personal attendant or maidservant.

Almost all the ordinary protégés had known that Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue were rivals. At the same time, they were fond of changing their personal attendants on a yearly basis. Although this provided many female ordinary protégés with an opportunity to follow a core protégé but they knew that these two jade beauties had no real attachment to any of them.

And now that they knew how crazy they were, all the female ordinary protégés that were in the party resolved never to become their personal attendants in the future.

Lu Qingyun took a look around the vicinity and he was quite surprised to see hundreds of cultivators at the entrance of the Misty Desolate Valley. There were actually dozens of celestial clans presented in the vicinity and even one of the big four celestial clans the Flying Armament Sect was also presented.

However most of the celestial clans did not talk to the other celestial clans and kept to themselves.

The protégés of the Flying Armament Sect had looks of hostility when they saw the party of the Heavens Ridge Villa but other than that, they continued to mind their own businesses.

Leng Qiuyue hummed coldly when she saw the protégés of the Flying Armament Sect, “Hmph, so one of the big four celestial clans is also here. Are they such cowards that they choose to remain at the entrance?”

Although her voice was soft, it was quite audible to the Flying Armament Sect and to the other celestial clans that had setup camp nearby.

Ouyang Xue, Lu Qingyun, Rushuang, Lie Xingyuan: …

The ordinary protégés of the Heavens Ridge Villa were all quite startled and some of them had even turned ashen. It was because Leng Qiuyue had chosen to stir up shit at this time. What if there were real celestial experts in the party of the Flying Armament Sect then they would all be in trouble!

Maybe before they could even step into the Misty Desolate Valley, they would all get killed!

Indeed, a fine looking man and a beautiful maiden from the Flying Armament Sect had quietly approached them and from their attires, it was obviously that they were the core protégés of the Flying Armament Sect.

The beautiful maiden was indeed very beautiful and immediately Lie Xingyuan whispered to Lu Qingyun, “We are in luck or rather bad luck. She is Fairy Ling Xiu, one of the top twenty beauties of New Empyrean City.”

The fine looking man said coldly as he approached Leng Qiuyue, “Maiden, did you just say that we are cowards? Do you want to repeat those words again?”

Leng Qiuyue pulled back her curtain veil as she said coldly, “I dare to and who are you?”

When the fine looking man saw the astonishing beauty of Leng Qiuyue, he was quite startled as he asked, “You are Ouyang Xue or Leng Qiuyue?”

Ouyang Xue pulled back her curtain veil and said coldly, “I’m Ouyang Xue and she is Leng Qiuyue. Do not confuse us!”

The fine looking man chuckled softly, “So it is the Twin Alluring Flowers of the Heavens Ridge Villa. I’m Young Master Ling Chong and this is my sister Fairy Ling Xiu. So the two of you are in charge here?”

Many of the ordinary protégés of the Heavens Ridge Villa had immediately turned pale when they had heard his name. It was because Ling Chong and Ling Xi was the young master and young mistress of the Flying Armament Sect and they were the children of the grandmaster of the Flying Armament Sect. Their statuses exceeded that of any core protégés!

Moreover, it was rumored that Ling Chong was an intermediate fourth realm expert while Ling Xi was an initial fourth realm expert.

The ordinary protégés of the Heavens Ridge Villa were all smiling weakly. This was really slapping themselves on the face!

Lie Xingyuan whispered to the startled Lu Qingyun, “They are fourth realm experts…”

Lu Qingyun began to smile weakly. The difference between a third realm expert and a fourth realm expert was actually quite a big gap. A fourth realm expert was one that had cultivated to the energy level and hence the fourth realm was also known as the energy level as well as the immortal celestial level. At this level, the celestial practitioner would cease to age completely as they had full mastery of their cultivation energy.

He was thinking, “This junior sister of mine, Leng Qiuyue has really barked up to the wrong tree. Since she has stirred up this shit, I shall just stand here quietly while they settle their differences. Hopefully, this can be resolved without any fist fights…”

Leng Qiuyue had suddenly pointed to Lu Qingyun and said to Ling Chong, “Did you see that person over there? He is my senior brother.”

Lu Qingyun was startled as Ling Chong and Ling Xi had suddenly looked toward his direction. He was thinking, “Did she just drag me into her shit hole…”

He began to smile weakly toward Ling Chong and Ling Xi.

Fairy Ling Xi had an interesting flash in her eyes as she appraised Lu Qingyun as she said quietly, “This senior brother of yours, what is his name?”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly as he answered, “Lu Qingyun here. Please pardon us for our rudeness-”

Leng Qiuyue interrupted him coldly, “We do not need to apologize to them.”

Lu Qingyun: …

If we do not, he was thinking, then we would all be in terrible troubles pretty soon…

Ling Xi said gently, “Since your senior brother looks like a nice person, we shall let this rest.” She took a last glance at Lu Qingyun before she took her leave.

Ling Chong was smiling as he stared intently at both Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue, “Indeed, indeed. Why not? We are only here for our experiential training and it is interesting to meet people…”

He began to laugh as he took a reluctantly last look at Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue as he said politely, “I shall take my leave. Hopefully we can meet again.”

Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue were suddenly looking at Lu Qingyun coldly, startling him.

He was perplexed as he thought, “What did I do? I’m just trying to break a fight. Don’t tell me you really want to fight with them?”

But what he was thinking was completely different from what Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue were thinking. They were unhappy that Fairy Ling Xi had dropped the matter because she had taken one look at Lu Qingyun. They were actually secretly jealous.

To the rest of the ordinary protégés of the Heavens Ridge Villa and to Lie Xingyuan, they were all thinking. “It seems that if one has the good looks, they can get out of any troubles…”

The minute Ling Chong had seen Leng Qiuyue and Ouyang Xue, his hostile reaction had immediately faded away.

Leng Qiuyue was secretly sighing. She was acting too out of the norm. This was unlike her usual self. Maybe she just wanted to get Lu Qingyun to notice her and even get his attention on her for a while…

Even Ouyang Xue was thinking, “Leng Qiuyue, what are you trying to do? We are lucky this time. Don’t tell me, you like senior brother?”

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Chapter 42: Day of the Experiential Training

Three days were quickly up and it was soon the start of Lu Qingyun’s clan experiential training.

He had got up very early with Lie Xingyuan and they had made their way to the Experiential Hall. They were feeling refreshed after just consuming the Triple Divine Essence Pill that he had prepared the night before.

Lu Qingyun could feel that he had already reached the peak of the upper third realm enlighten level while Lie Xingyuan felt that she could break through to the intermediate enlighten level anytime soon.

Because this was the second time that they had consumed the Triple Divine Essence Pill, it did not have a much greater impact to them than the very first time.

It was exactly as what Lu Qingyun had told Lie Xingyuan that night.

Just before they had left, Lu Qingyun quickly wrote a note where Qin Keqin could easily see if she was to come.

When they had reached the Experiential Hall, there were already more than thirty protégés that had gathered.

Lu Qingyun was feeling a little awkward because he had thought that he was the first but there were many others that were already even earlier than him.

Many of the protégés were chatting noisily when they had entered the Experiential Hall. A quick scan around the place indicated that there were around ten female protégés and twenty male protégés.

All the female protégés were wearing their curtain hat veils that reached to their waists while the male protégés were wearing a shorter curtain hat veil that just covered their necks. Because they had not gone into the wilderness yet, all the curtain veils were actually pulled to their backs for easy identifications.

When he had stepped inside the Experiential Hall, almost all the protégés had stopped their chatters or were looking in his direction as they greeted, “Senior brother.”

“So senior brother is also in this experiential training with us?”

“But he is only a lowly first realm cultivator, tsk tsk.”

“Does it mean that we have to look out for him? What bad luck.”

“He is the weakest core protégé that we have ever had and he is lower than most of the fellow protégés here.”

“He is so handsome,” a female protégé muttered.

There were both positive and negative soft remarks about Lu Qingyun after they had greeted him but he did not mind at all. It was because he knew that he had actually no right to be a core protégé and in the first place, he was actually just content to be an ordinary protégé like them. If it was not for Qin Keqin who had hand picked him as a core protégé, he would be just an ordinary protégé.

But the most surprising reaction that he got was that he had recognized three of the female protégés that were now looking at him.

They were Rushuang who used to be Tang Bufan’s personal attendant, Ouyang Xue and Leng Qiuyue!

Ouyang Xue and Leng Qiuyue were of course the other two core protégés that were in this experiential training.

Ouyang Xue was not just a core protégé now but she was also the grand elder of the Crystal Cloud Spirit Hall.

She was extremely startled when she saw Lu Qingyun. It was because she had been trying to avoid him but in the end, she had kept dumping into him…

Leng Qiuyue was equally startled when she saw Lu Qingyun as she thought, “Why is he here? Mm, don’t tell me we are really fated after all…”

She sighed softly as she said quietly to herself, “But my rival Ouyang Xue is also here. What bad luck to have her with me during the experiential training. Now I have to listen to her commands just because she is a grand elder.”

Rushuang was looking awkward when she saw Lu Qingyun. It was because she had scoffed at him in the past. As for now, she was a personal attendant of Leng Qiuyue and had accompanied her for this experiential training.

Elder Bu Ming was the officiator of this experiential training and he said aloud, “Now that everyone is here, we can begin the briefing in advance.”

Then he smiled to Lu Qingyun and said, “Senior brother, will that do for you?”

Lu Qingyun replied awkwardly, “The sooner we start, the faster we can get on the clan mission.”

Elder Bu Ming smiled and turned to the rest of the protégés, “Some of you may be new to the clan experiential training and some of you may be old birds already. It is our customary rules that we do not tell any of the protégés what the missions are until the start of the experiential training. This is to prevent any of the protégés to pick an easy mission.”

Then he sighed heavily and said solemnly, “But there are actually no easy missions except for lucky missions. When you are out of the city and into the desolate wilderness, you must always be on your best vigilant. This is because dangers abound everywhere. Even a small injury can kill you if you are not careful enough!”

He smiled and said, “Today, we have our Senior Brother Lu Qingyun, Grand Elder Ouyang Xue and Core Protégé Leng Qiuyue who will be joining you in this experiential training. As Grand Elder Xue and Core Protégé Qiuyue are both upper third realm experts, you will probably have an easier time than the other experiential trainings. But still, do not be careless!”

Leng Xingyuan was smiling as she thought, “If only Elder Bu Ming knows that senior brother is also an upper third realm expert now. He will be so surprised.”

Elder Bu Ming unsealed a scroll and read out its contents, “Now for the details of the experiential training. You are to form a party to the Misty Desolate Valley and to hunt down at least a fourth rank desolate beast and at least three third rank desolate beasts before you are allowed to return. Should you return before you accomplish the mission then this mission will be considered a fail and it will be recorded down as a black mark.”

Many of the protégés were smiling and muttering excitingly.

The Misty Desolate Valley was just nearby and not too far. It was only a three days journey by foot and was a well-known training ground for the celestial clans.

Moreover their experiential mission was to hunt down only a formidable fourth rank desolate beast and it was not a big issue to an intermediate third realm expert. Moreover, they had two upper third realm experts in their ranks plus there were some thirty of them. With their dazzling sword formations and wolf pack tactics, they would be completing the mission in no time.

A protégé began to mutter, “Is it because we have senior brother here? He is terribly weak. That is why we are given an easy mission?”

“Since no one knows the mission in advance, it is likely the elders are cheating for him…”

“Isn’t that great? I just want to get over this experiential mission as quickly as possible…”

“I have butterflies in my stomach whenever I go on experiential mission. The last mission, I was almost killed…”

Elder Bu Ming made a loud cough to silence the background noises before he said aloud, “If you have no more questions then you shall hurry and be on your way. Your rations will be given to you once the experiential mission token is given to you on your way out.”

Leng Qiuyue had suddenly stepped out to say coldly, “Elder Bu Ming, honestly I feel that this experiential mission lacks challenge. I have already been through numerous fourth rank desolate beast missions. Can we have a little bit more challenge?”

Half of the protégés were smiling bitterly. But none of them dare to say anything loud. It was because this icy beauty was renowned for her pettiness.

Elder Bu Ming smiled, “I’m afraid that we can’t change the mission once it has already been decided…”

“Elder Bu Ming, although you can’t change the mission but you can certainly upgrade the mission, am I right?” This time it was Ouyang Xue who was speaking.

She did not want to portray a weaker self in front of her rival Leng Qiuyue.

Elder Bu Ming was smiling weakly, “Indeed I can but…”

Ouyang Xue said, “Then as grand elder, I command you to upgrade the mission difficulty. This is too easy for us to accomplish.”

Elder Bu Ming smiled weakly as he secretly stolen a glance at Lu Qingyun. He had been secretly instructed by Celestial Shi Guanyin not to make the missions too hard for Lu Qingyun and Leng Qiuyue.

But now Ouyang Xue was ordering him directly to increase the difficulty of the mission.

With a bitter smile, he could only say. “Alright then. I shall increase the mission completion to that of a fifth rank desolate beast and two fourth rank desolate beasts.”

When he had said that, many of the protégés had a cold shiver down their spines. It was because a fifth rank desolate was as strong as an upper third realm expert to a fourth realm expert. If they were lucky, they could be able to meet the weakest fifth rank desolate beast. At the same time, if they were to go deeper into the Misty Desolate Valley, there was a chance that they would meet with even higher ranks desolate beasts and the mission time would also be lengthened considerably.

Even Lu Qingyun’s jaws almost dropped when he had heard of the new mission objectives. He began to smile bitterly at Leng Xingyuan who was also smiling bitterly at him.

He muttered, “What are these two maidens doing…”

He was not them so he did not understand what they were thinking.

He did not know that both maidens were using the guise of ‘not enough challenge’ to purposely make the experiential training harder. It was also because they were trying to impress Lu Qingyun and at the same time, this means that they would be on this trip far longer with him.

Because he was not them, he totally did not understand their true intentions at all.

But to the rest of the protégés, they all knew that these two beauties had a feud with each other and were merely trying to outdo one another. At first all the male protégés were extremely delighted to have two of the top twenty beauties in New Empyrean City in this mission but now, they were extremely worried!

Leng Qiuyue was thinking as she stole a glance at Lu Qingyun, “So this is a suicide mission. Very good then.”

Even Ouyang Xue was muttering to herself, “Hmph, what am I doing. Am I still rational anymore?”

Leng Qiuyue turned to smile coldly at Ouyang Xue, “Let’s see which one of us will be able to get the fifth rank desolate beast first.”

Ouyang Xue returned a cold smile, “Surely I will be the one. Is there even a need to say so?”

Leng Qiuyue smiled coldly, “We shall see. It will be so funny if you can bite more than you can chew.”

Elder Bu Ming was smiling bitterly as he thought, “Why is that I’ve got a really bad feeling about all this?”

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Chapter 41: Qingyun Not So Secret Dream

When Lu Qingyun returned to his abode, he was feeling very happy.

Although it was just a simple dinner with Qin Keqin and her two sisters, he felt that he was one step closer to her now. He had finally seen a side of her that he had never seen before; during the dinner she was happily boasting to her two saintess sisters how great an alchemist she was now.

He thought that this was her cute side.

He was beginning to wonder how Qin Keqin got two seventh realm experts as her sisters? During the light dinner, he had come to know that they were not real sisters but rather very close friends. Hence, they were addressing each other as sisters similar to the way men addressed close friends as brothers.

Lie Xingyuan smiled when she saw him, “Senior brother, you are back? It is so late. So how are things going? Did you…” she hesitated for a while before saying. “Did you find sect leader?”

“Yes, I’ve found her. She promises me that she will be here in a few more days after she has finished settled some matters.” Lu Qingyun said with a dreamy smile.

“That is good,” Lie Xingyuan said after she had seen his happy countenance. “Then it must have been a fruitful trip. By the way, I have reserved the experiential training for us. It will start in three days.”

Lu Qingyun was startled, “So soon?”

“I have tried to get the one after this but the elders told me that it has reached the quota of three core protégés. So only this one is available. If not, we have to wait for another two months and since we don’t know how long an experiential training will take, you may miss the martial tournament. So I quickly make a reservation for you.”

Lu Qingyun pondered for a while, “Well, I guess this will do fine. I’m just worried that Keqin will not be able to find me then. I can leave her a note…”

Then he realized he had made a blunder by calling out her name to Xingyuan and it was impolite to the sect leader, so he quickly said. “I wonder who will be the core protégés that will be going with us?”

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “The elders won’t reveal it to anyone. Only on the day will we know. I have tried to ask them but they still refuse to tell me even though I’ve mentioned to them that you are the senior brother. Maybe there is no one else and it will be up to senior brother to take care of the junior protégé brothers and sisters.”

Lu Qingyun smiled as he laughed at himself, “Maybe. Hopefully, it is not them who will be ones that are taking care of me.”

Then he said, “So we have three days before the start of the experiential training. I am a little excited as it will be first time that I will be out on experiential training.”

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “You will soon get used to it. This will be my third experiential training.”

Lu Qingyun smiled. “Xingyuan at least you have been to the experiential training before so you are not nervous.”

Lie Xingyuan laughed softly, “Who says I’m not nervous? I am always afraid that I may not come back alive after each experiential training.”

“It is dangerous?” he asked with a startled expression.

“There will be always be dangers so we ought to be careful and exercise cautious at all times.” She explained.

Lu Qingyun nodded, “Alright. I will keep it in mind.”

All of a sudden he clapped his hands, giving her a startled jump as he said excitingly. “Xingyuan, look what do I have for us here?”

He promptly took out three Triple Divine Essence Pills and said, “Master gives this to me. She is indeed kind to me.”

Lie Xingyuan was quite shocked when she saw the three Triple Divine Essence Pills as she muttered, “She still got more of these?”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “I think these three are the last ones so we ought to be careful with its uses.”

“We?” asked Lie Xingyuan curiously.

“Yes, we. I’m going to split the pills into halve for us to consume again. We will take one just before the start of the experiential training.” He explained.

Lie Xingyuan looked at him with a startled expression, “Senior brother, actually you don’t have to be so nice toward me. These are from your master. What if she knows about it?”

Lu Qingyun gave her a smile, “It is pointless for me to consume the full pill. So I may as well share half of it with you. In fact, the third pill here will lose its effectiveness for us so I’m thinking that we shall keep it first.”

As he took a glance at the pills, he could not help sighing secretly. It was because until now, he did not know why Qin Keqin had added the starforge substances into these pills…

“Alright then. Then I shall turn in early tonight. I’m a little tired.” He said with a soft yawn.

“Shall I prepare a bath for you, senior brother?” She asked hurriedly.

Lu Qingyun shook his head, “There is no need. See you tomorrow then. I am just going to do a small wash up and rinsing before I head to my bed.”

With that he had walked back to his room.

That night, Lu Qingyun had a most pleasant dream about Qin Keqin and him.

He dreamed that he was kissing her and cuddling her. It quickly turned into an erotic wet dream…

All of a sudden he had heard a small scream in his head and he quickly woke up panicky. He opened his eyes and saw that it was Yan’Er who was looking at him.

He asked dreamily, “Yan’Er, why did you shout me out for?”

Yan’Er said weakly, “Master, I saw you have undressed Big Sister Keqin and you, and you…”

Lu Qingyun stared at her blankly before he asked, “How come you can still read my thoughts? I’ve thought that I’m a third realm cultivator now?”

Yan’Er chuckled, “That is because your Yan’Er is also a third realm cultivator therefore I can see what you are thinking!”

Lu Qingyun was completely stunned…

He had never thought that a spirit entity that could cultivate and who was on the same cultivation level as him could still see his thoughts. Usually the master would be several realms higher than the spirit entity.

Because he was depending on Yan’Er to cultivate for him, this means that it was difficult for his cultivation level to exceed Yan’Er. Which means that he had now completely screwed himself…?

He was now smiling bitterly as he looked at Yan’Er.

Yan’Er was still asking, “Master, what are you doing to Big Sister Keqin just now? I don’t understand at all. If you don’t tell me, I’m going to ask Big Sister Keqin when she is here.”

Lu Qingyun had immediately turned ashen as he quickly muttered, “Oh no, please don’t! Erm, I was just paying her a great deal of honor. This is our way of repaying our master with the highest respect and honor.”

Yan’Er started to look at Lu Qingyun weirdly but he had already closed his eyes and covered himself with his blanket…

Yan’Er was thinking shyly, “Mm, since he is my master and I am respecting him so much. Should I do the same to him?”

But she was soon saddened, “But Yan’Er is a spirit without a corporeal body. I can’t touch master…”

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Chapter 40: Keqin I miss you

As Lu Qingyun did not see Qin Keqin for so many days and it was almost close to two weeks, he decided to visit her while Lie Xingyuan had gone to the mission hall to register them for the experiential mission.

It actually took him a great deal of courage to finally decide to make this move because he did not know how she would think if he was to come unannounced. Although they were master and disciple relationship but he knew very little about her.

Finally he had stood outside the Heavenly Lotus Teahouse where Qin Keqin’s hideout was.

After standing there for nearly an hour, he finally took the courage to step inside the Heavenly Lotus Teahouse.

No one greeted him. All the stewards treated him as though he was invisible.

Therefore he made his own way to the upper floors of the Heavenly Lotus Teahouse. Although there were more guards and stewards on the upper floors but again, no one stopped him from approaching.

He was smiling bitterly.

It was as though he was really invisible!

Finally he came to the hideout door and was staring sheepishly at it. Until now, he was still unsure whether he should enter?

But a feminine voice called out from beyond door, “Since you’re already here, why don’t you enter? Do you know that you are looking so silly standing outside the teahouse for nearly an hour and not entering?”

He recognized the voice of Feng Minyue and pushed opened the door awkwardly as he said, “Hello…Lu Qingyun greets seniors-”

Inside were Feng Minyue and Xuan Danfeng. They were both sipping tea and Feng Minyue interrupted him softly, “There is no need to greet us next time. Just be casual. After all, you’re one of us now.”

Feng Minyue and Xuan Danfeng were dazzling beautiful and Lu Qingyun dared to look at them directly as he averted his eyes to say, “I’m here to look for my master. Is she around? I have not seen her for many days so I am a little concerned.”

Feng Minyue heaved a soft sigh of melancholy, “Finally you are here. She isn’t in a good state and is sleeping in the alchemy room. Let me bring you to her but I shouldn’t advise you to disturb her for too long. She didn’t have any sleep for several days now.”

Xuan Danfeng said, “Keqin has been trying to concoct some pills for you and is working so hard. You ought to thank her profusely and not disappoint her in the future.”

Lu Qingyun asked, “She is making some pills for me? What pills are those ?”

Xuan Danfeng replied, “She is trying to make the Triple Divine Essence Pill for you.”

Feng Minyue added miserably, “And she is bankrupting us with her many failures.”

Lu Qingyun was smiling weakly. He knew how precious the herbs and spiritual resources were for concocting the Triple Divine Essence Pill.

“Come.” Feng Minyue said quietly.

He followed them and soon he was taken to a large room with many urns and cauldrons. In the middle of the room were two burning cauldron and he could sniff the fragrance of the Triple Divine Essence Pill and the Seven Hearts Hollow Pill.

Feng Minyue said, “She is sleeping in the interior of this room. You can look for her there. Since we are already here and she has not responded, this means that she is sound asleep. She must be truly so exhausted that she is unable to sense our approach. We shall take our leave first. See you later.”

Xuan Danfeng was looking around as she smiled weakly, “All these stuffs are money, money. It’s all in that cauldron now. I guess that this month we ought to tighten our pockets.”

Then she suddenly shut up and chuckled to Lu Qingyun, “Don’t mind me. Please continue your visit. See you in a while time.”

With that she and Feng Minyue had exited the room, leaving Lu Qingyun all alone inside.

Lu Qingyun did not go into the interior directly. Instead his attention was on the burning cauldrons.

He approached the cauldron and sniffed. This batch of Triple Divine Essence Pills was the same as the last pill that he had consumed and it also contained the starforge substances.

Why did Qin Keqin added the starforge substances to the Triple Divine Essence Pill and to the Seven Hearts Hollow Pill? Why did she need him to be forgettable about?

Although the starforge substances were not in any large quantities but it was still harmful in the longer term.

Looking around, he saw several discarded batches. It seemed that Qin Keqin was not really a good alchemist and was actually quite wasteful. She was just throwing everything into the cauldron and hoped that she could actually succeed. Her rate of success was like one in ten…

This was a horrible result. A skilled alchemist could easily have a rate of success of three in ten for the Triple Divine Essence Pills.

Luckily the Triple Divine Essence Pills was not beyond him and he gently took out the lid of the cauldron.

The first thing he did was to adjust the fire and the portions of the Triple Divine Essence Pills. Next he added more herbs to neutralize the starforge substances.

After a while, he closed the lid again and adjusted the fire until it turned blue.

He did the same for the cauldron that contained the Seven Hearts Hollow Pill.

With a satisfied look and at no sweat, he began to walk to the interior of this chamber.

Indeed, there was another room at the end and gently he knocked on the door.

Still there was no respond.

So he gently pushed open the door and walked in.

At the end of the room was a bed and Qin Keqin was sleeping inside. She was sound asleep and was fully clothed. It seemed that she did not even have the energy to remove her outer garment before she fell asleep.

As Lu Qingyun approached the bed, Qin Keqin had suddenly gasped and jumped out of her bed with her fingers in an attack stance at him!

Qin Keqin was startled as she quickly stopped her attack, “Qingyun, it is you? Why are you?”

She was sound asleep and was in a deep sleep. But even then, she had a high sense of alertness and was alerted to danger. When her inner perception senses the approach of a stranger, she was quickly startled from her deep sleep.

Lu Qingyun said weakly, “Keqin…I mean master…”

Qin Keqin chuckled softly, “Here, you can call me Keqin. Here, I am not your master.”

Lu Qingyun nodded slowly, “I didn’t see you for several days so I am a little concern. So I am here to take a look and wonder how you have been doing?”

She averted her eyes and sighed regretfully, “I have actually wanted to visit you sooner but I keep failing in my alchemy. I want to make you more of the Triple Divine Essence Pills to increase your cultivation base. I’m also making the Seven Hearts Hollow Pill for you as well.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “Yes, I saw.”

“Don’t worry. If I fail again, I can just go and buy the pill materials again. I will try until I’ve succeeded.” She was laughing jovially as she said to Lu Qingyun.

Lu Qingyun looked a little sheepish as he recalled the vast amount of wasted pill materials. It was enough to give him a big heartache.

Qin Keqin suddenly had a jolt, “Oh, my fires. I’ve fallen asleep. I need to maintain the furnace heat or the pills will be screwed. Come, follow me quickly. I’ve got to take a look.”

She quickly rushed to the alchemy chamber where the two cauldrons were. There was an anxious look on her countenance as she inspected the two cauldrons.

All of a sudden she gave a soft gasp of surprise as she turned to look at Lu Qingyun with an angelic smile, “You won’t believe it but look what I’ve made!”

Lu Qingyun walked over to her side and saw that the Triple Divine Essence Pills were ready and were giving off a brilliant silver luster.

Qin Keqin chuckled, “I’ve actually got three! I have never gotten more than one before. My alchemy skills must be improving a lot now.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly to himself, “Actually if you have set it up properly, you should have gotten five or even six of those pills. I was helping you to do some damage control earlier…”

Qin Keqin was soon gasping with more delight as she opened the other cauldron and saw that she got two Seven Hearts Hollow Pills. She was absolute beaming with delight as she exclaimed happily, “I didn’t know that it is possible to get two of these. I must really be a genius alchemist.”

She turned to look at Lu Qingyun and chuckled, “One of the Seven Hearts Hollow Pills is for you. The other one I will be selling it as I need to recoup some of my losses. If I don’t recoup some of the losses, my sisters will be screaming at me day in and night out. They may look gentle but they can really be fierce. So don’t you daydream about them or anything. They are really badass saintess.”

Then she was really afraid that Lu Qingyun may fall in love with them so she added seriously, “They have a lot of weird fetishes too and dislike men. Why do you think that they are still single after so many years?”

Xuan Danfeng and Feng Minyue were of course very beautiful. They were the renowned beauties of the Nine Celestial Fraternity in the past before they disappeared completely from view.

Qin Keqin was also an astonishing beautiful maiden but she knew that most men were lecherous and were attracted to anything beautiful. It was not a matter of who was the more beautiful but who could keep the hearts of men better.

She was chuckling to herself, “I hope you sisters don’t mind me slurring your good names. Just treat this as doing me a favor and I will buy you vintage wines the next time.”

Lu Qingyun just smiled awkwardly. He was only interested in Qin Keqin. He had thought that she looked very cute when she was so earnest in doing alchemy. He thought, “So she likes to do alchemy as much as I do. This is great. But I shouldn’t correct her since she is my master…”

Qin Keqin grabbed all three of the Triple Divine Essence Pills and said to Lu Qingyun, “Here, you can have them all. Remember to take one pill every month. As for the Seven Hearts Hollow Pill, I will give it to you once it is ready. This thing still needs a lot of heat to purify it.”

Lu Qingyun nodded as he agreed with her. Indeed, the Seven Hearts Hollow Pills were still not ready to be taken out yet. At least not for another month.

She gave him a wry smile, “It seems that you have some interest in alchemy too. Well, you got a good master here. In the future, you still got a lot of things to learn from me. But it is an extremely complicated process and a lot of hard work. So I rather that you focus on your cultivation first.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “Alright…”

She gave him a smile before she asked, “So, what is your cultivation level now? After all the aid that I’ve given you?”

Lu Qingyun replied awkwardly, “I’m at the upper third realm enlighten celestial now. It is all thanks to master.”

“Oh.” Qin Keqin began to ponder for a while before she replied, “That seems fast? Seems good. But it is still not enough. You need to be a fifth realm expert to be at least good.”

This time, it was Lu Qingyun’s turn to be surprised. He had thought that his master would be so startled at his sudden progression. But her reaction was too normal…

The truth was Qin Keqin had totally no concept how difficult cultivation was. She was already a seventh realm cultivator when she was twenty. She was a unique existence in the entire celestial realm and was the true daughter of the heavens.

Qin Keqin suddenly looked at him, “Since you have come, shall we go out to have dinner?”

Lu Qingyun was startled. This was his first date with her!

So he eagerly said, “Alright. I am free anyway. You have any place in mind?”

But he was saying to himself, “Please don’t daydream about your master. This is just a normal dinner and not a date.”

Qin Keqin rolled her enticing eyes before she chuckled, “Since this is our teahouse, we can have our dinner in this place. It is free of expenses to me. We can also invite Feng Minyue and Xuan Danfeng as well. It is not that they really need any food or drink but we can treat it as a gathering.”

When Lu Qingyun heard that the dinner place was actually at the same place and that she was going to invite Feng Minyue and Xuan Danfeng along, his eyes began to roll awkwardly before he smiled weakly, “This…sounds like a good idea…”

“You think so too? That’s great.” Laughed Qin Keqin. “We can even share with you some of the gossips that we have heard over the past two weeks. It seems that one of the top twenty beauties in New Empyrean was caught two timing two men and her scandal has been discovered.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly in return.

He was actually not interested in any of the city gossips…

Qin Keqin smiled as she returned a quiet glance at him before she said gently, “Thank you for coming today. I’m really happy to see you.”

He was startled by her sudden words that he found himself stammering, “This is nothing at all. I am also really glad to see you too.”

She smiled quietly as she turned around, “Is that so? I’m really happy to hear that.”

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Chapter 38: I’m an Upper Third Realm Expert?

For the next few days, Lu Qingyun and Yan’Er continued to practice on the Flaming Crimson Sword.

Every day he would burn himself totally out with exhaustion. In the end, all his reserve elixir pills that could restore vitality and spiritual energies that he had before he came to New Empyrean City were all finished by him.

Although he was looking haggard and exhausted, Yan’Er was looking brighter in countenance every day.

He was a little surprised at her change.

Yan’Er merely chuckled, “It is all thanks to the Annihilating God Seed.”

Whenever Yan’Er mentioned about this mysterious Annihilating God Seed, it would give him a headache because he had totally no idea what it was.

Lie Xingyuan was particular anxious for him. It was because he would only take one meal a day toward the evening time and whenever he came out of the practice chamber, he would look terribly tired and haggard.

Even his handsome face was beginning to thin and grew shadowy.

Finally she tried to persuade him, “Senior brother, why don’t you take a break first. It is alright not to have any achievement or breakthrough for the first stage. After all this Flaming Crimson Sword that you’ve picked is really a difficult sword art. It is not a disgrace to give it up. Why don’t you take this Winds Entropy Dance back first?”

Lu Qingyun just smiled weakly as he took a quick meal, “I’m alright. I’m going back in again…”

“So soon?! You just have only a few bites…” Lie Xingyuan felt like crying when she saw his haggard state. “Don’t go…”

But he had already left for the practice chamber…

Lie Xingyuan sighed softly, “Senior brother, please take care of yourself…”

In the past few days, Lu Qingyun and Yan’Er had studied the Flaming Crimson Sword zealously. When Lu Qingyun lacked the strength to maintain both his profound energies on his sword and aura at the same time, Yan’Er would substitute her strength as his aura.

Soon they had attained the second stage. The second stage was called the Lethal Burning Sword and lethal strength of this sword art was extremely powerful. Lu Qingyun thought it was not possible for most third realm cultivators to take a direct blow from it unless they too had some superior sword arts.

Yan’Er said, “We can get Big Sister Xingyuan to test it.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “We don’t want to hurt her. Moreover, she had only just attained the third realm. Our sword skills are meant for our opponents, not allies.”

Yan’Er looked a little disappointed but she was soon happily looking at the third stage.

The third stage was even more profound than the second stage and this was the stage that Lu Qingyun was keen to master.

After several more days of arduous hard work, he managed to master the third stage with Yan’Er.

The name of this third stage sword art was the Supreme Burning Sword and when he had exercised the profound arts of the Flaming Crimson Sword, there would be a flaming hue around his sword. It was twice as devastating as the second stage Lethal Burning Sword.

Lu Qingyun felt a little weird. By right, this third stage was actually beyond his cultivation strength to even use it even with the aid of Yan’Er. Could this be attributed to the Annihilating God Seed?

He was extremely pleased that he was able to attain to the third stage of the Flaming Crimson Sword. This was an unexpected result. He had actually wanted to stop at the second stage should he be able to attain it but it was much smoother than he had expected therefore he decided to see if he could attain to the third stage.

Unfortunately, the fourth stage was too demanding and his spiritual inner sea was too weak to even start. Therefore he decided to practice the Flaming Crimson Sword once his cultivation strength had further improved.

As he was about to drop dead on the ground due to exhaustion, Yan’Er chuckled. “Master, I have just attained to the upper third realm…”

Lu Qingyun muttered sleepily, “Yan’Er, that’s good. You’re so impressive…I’m so tired now…”

“Really master?” Yan’Er chuckled delightfully.

“Yes, you are…my Little Yan’Er is so adorable and cute. I hope that Yan’Er will always be like this forever….” He actually did not know what he was saying and he had soon collapsed into a deep sleep.

Yan’Er looked at the sleeping Lu Qingyun as she said solemnly, “Then your Yan’Er will always be your adorable and cute Little Yan’Er.”

When he was sleeping, he began to dream of the time when he was a child…

His old master was concocting some pills in a cauldron and he was displeased when he saw Little Qingyun entering his alchemy chamber.

“I’ve told you not to disturb me when I’m inside. Shoo, go away. These things are dangerous and may explode anytime.”

But Little Qingyun was undeterred by the fires or the toxic heat, “Master, the fires here do not seem right. It needs a little balancing and heat.”

His old master laughed, “What do a brat knows?” But he had walked to Little Qingyun to lift him up, “Come, I get you away from here.”

But all of a sudden his keen eyes saw the spot where Little Qingyun had pointed to. It did seem a little off so he increased the heat on the side of the cauldron before he took Little Qingyun out. There was no harm trying since these pills were not really valuable.

When he was back to the alchemy chamber, the cauldron was shaking furiously.

Curiously he took a look and was startled; there were more pills that he could normally made and these pills were giving off a divine essence that indicated these pills were of superior grade.

From that day onward, his old master had allowed Little Qingyun into the alchemy chamber and had taught him alchemy.

It turned out that Little Qingyun was a true genius in alchemy. Although his alchemy level was lower than his old master but the pills that he had refined were always plentiful and of higher quality.

Even Lu Qingyun did not truly understand why he could sense the changes in the alchemy fires and he had an exceptional affinity with all things fire.

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Chapter 37: Intermediate Third Realm Expert!

For the next several days, Lu Qingyun spent some time to study the sword arts that he had just acquired while Leng Xingyuan was also pouring through her new acquired sword arts.

She was more excited about the Winds Entropy Dance that he had picked for her and had immediately put aside all the other sword manuals that she had chosen for herself.

Since the Flaming Crimson Sword was a third realm sword art, so he began on it first rather than the Phoenix Burst. The Phoenix Burst had to wait until he had a fundamental basis in the Flaming Crimson Sword first.

He was now alone in the practice chamber as he meditated to focus on his thoughts first. First he gauged his inner sea to check his cultivation foundation and was surprised that his small pool of spiritual sea was now like a big pool.

“It is all thanks to Yan’Er…” he mused.

The Flaming Crimson Sword consisted of dozens of strokes and had a total of sixth stages of mastery. The first stage was really the foundation at which he had to first consume his profound energy to release his martial power.

This was all too easy for him now. It was nothing much to any of the third realm cultivator. However, the real problem was that he had to imbue his aura strength into his sword and do a double burn to consume more of his profound energy in order to produce a crimson flame.

This was not just difficult but several times more difficult!

The profound energies that he had to expend was three times more than just a simple martial power move and he had to focus on his aura, mind and sword at the same time!

This forced him to really focus all of his attention to overcome this first hurdle.

After three days of hard trying, he had finally succeeded in the first stage as he produced his first crimson flame on the sword before he collapsed on the ground of the practice chamber while muttering, “After consuming tons of elixir pills and exhausting all my profound energy every day, I’ve finally succeed in mastering the first stage. This is really too difficult…”

He did not know that what he had achieved could put even a fourth realm cultivator to shame and there was none in the Heavens Ridge Villa that could master the first stage as fast as him. Even that would require one year of intensive training and seclusion!

When Lu Qingyun regained his consciousness, he was in a daze and he was suddenly staring blankly at Yan’Er.

“Yan’Er, why did you come out?” he asked.

Yan’Er said cutely, “Master, your inner spirit sea was burning just now and I was curious what you are doing.”

Lu Qingyun chuckled as he showed Yan’Er his new sword art, “I was just practicing a new sword art that requires a lot of my spiritual sea. I’m so sorry to disturb your meditation.”

Yan’Er giggled, “Not at all. I was a little struck at my breakthrough just now. But when master’s spiritual sea was boiling and burning, I had my breakthrough to the intermediate third realm now.”

Lu Qingyun was startled, “So fast? Yan’Er is really a genius!”

“It is because master you have aided me!” Yan’Er chuckled cutely. “So this sword art is really beneficial to master.”

“Actually…” Lu Qingyun curiously said with a little sheepish look, “This isn’t supposed to happen. I am supposed to exhaust all my spiritual sea and you are supposed to be severely affected. Therefore it is impossible for Yan’Er to have any breakthrough while I am using all the spiritual sea.”

Yan’Er took queerly at him, “Oh is it? But I didn’t feel that the spiritual sea is any lesser. In fact, I can feel the strong aura in master’s inner spiritual sea.”

Lu Qingyun muttered, “No, it is impossible. When I use any spiritual strength, my aura will also decrease. This is the known law of cultivation.”

Yan’Er suddenly clapped her hands, “I know! It must be the Annihilating God Seed that is within master’s spiritual sea that is giving out the aura. It is absorbing the burned spiritual sea back to its core.”

Lu Qingyun looked at her curiously, “I think this is the second time that you’ve mentioned this Annihilating God Seed? What is it?” This time, he found himself believing her previous accounts now. It was because there was something weird happening around.

Yan’Er chuckled, “This Annihilating God Seed is a type of immortal fire. It is several times even more superior to your Yan’Er golden roc flame. Master is indeed my master to have one in your soul. In fact, I have been stealing a lot of cultivation strength from it.”

Lu Qingyun asked, “Immortal fire? How do I get it? Where did it come from?”

Yan’Er replied queerly, “It is master. Of course it comes from master!”

Lu Qingyun: …

Did she even answer my question? He thought. But then Yan’Er was just a spiritual entity and she may not know too. It was already good enough that she could even identify the Annihilating God Seed that was within him.

Yan’Er suddenly said, “Master, I want to learn the Flaming Crimson Sword too.”

He laughed, “You can’t learn it. You’re a spiritual entity. Except for your flames, you can’t really use a sword.”

Yan’Er chuckled, “But I can become master’s spiritual aura when you are using the Flaming Crimson Sword, right? Then I can go blast, blast on your opponents!”

Lu Qingyun was startled as a suddenly thought crossed his mind. Then he laughed as he tried to give Yan’Er a good slap but his hand passed through to her, “Yan’Er, you are truly a genius. If you become my spiritual aura then I won’t need to be so exhausted. I can just focus on my profound energies. At the same time, you will be able to help me to get to the higher stages of the Flaming Crimson Sword.”

Yan’Er clapped her hands and chuckled excitedly, “So master is saying yes? Thank you master! I’m sure my cultivation level will soar with this Flaming Crimson Sword too. After all, master’s Annihilating God Seed also need more fire energies. I can help master to nurture your Annihilating God Seed God Seed too!”

Lu Qingyun thought, “It seems to me that Yan’Er is more interested to nurture the Annihilating God Seed than cultivating. What exactly is this Annihilating God Seed and how did it get inside me?”

But these were the questions that he had to put aside first.

He said to Yan’Er, “Alright. Now that I’ve mastered the first stage, we should begin with the second stage next…”

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Chapter 36: Visiting the Red Heaven Sword Library (3)

Leng Qiuyue said as she took a second glance at Lu Qingyun, “Do you know the name of your junior sister here?”

Lu Qingyun shook his head and he was startled by her suddenly question.

She heaved a soft sigh. She is a little disappointed that he did not know her name but she said in an amicable tone, “My name is Leng Qiuyue. Senior Brother Lu Qingyun, so how did you advance your cultivation level this quickly?”

He was smiling awkwardly now. It was not because he did not know how to answer her question but did she not rebuke him earlier for addressing her as his junior sister? This sudden change in attitude was indeed too fast. And now she was calling him Senior Brother Lu Qingyun in such a friendly manner?

“I have some aid from my master. She has been helping me a lot.” He causally replied.

Leng Qiuyue nodded, “She has even given you a divine sword. I’m sure that she is a great master.” She had lowered her glances to say, “So now, you are a third realm expert. This is too sudden…”

All of a sudden she had thought that maybe their gap was not that wide after all. It was extremely difficult for a first realm expert to reach the third realm level. Although the telling stone may gauge one’s potential, it was not the ultimate truth. More than 90% had failed in their quests to reach the third realm level in their lifetime despite what the telling stone had foretold. All the cultivators still had to cultivate hard and hoped for a lucky occurrence.

But still, his speed was totally unheard of.

She added slowly, “I’m the senior core protégé of my Celestial Master Shi. So now you know who I am?” It was really bold for her to talk to him this much. It was because she was renowned for ignoring all the others. Indeed, she had taken plenty of courage just to talk to him. It had always been others who were trying to chitchat with her and not the other way round.

Lu Qingyun said sheepishly, “Well, I guess you’ve already known who I am.” So he decided to say more. “I am on the invite of Grand Elder Celestial Shi to visit the Red Heavens Sword Library to pick some sword manuals to practice.”

“Oh? My master will actually invite you?” She asked. So it was not because of his master who had pressured her master to allow him to enter the third floor?

Lu Qingyun laughed weakly, “That’s right. It was yesterday. She had even given me the permission to visit the fourth floor of the library.”

Leng Qiuyue: …

She was startled because she did not even have any chance to visit the fourth floor of the library, not even once.

Leng Qiuyue said quietly, “Have you heard of the two alluring flowers of the Heavens Ridge Villa?”

“Oh? Is it a type of herb?” Lu Qingyun asked curiously. When it came to the topic of herbs, his interests would naturally shoot up the roof. He had certainly never heard of this alluring flower before. His new thought was that it only grew in the vicinity of the Heavens Ridge Villa.

Leng Qiuyue smiled weakly and her eyes seemed to roll to one side, “The two alluring flowers refer to Ouyang Xue and me, the two beauties of the Heavens Ridge Villa. In New Empyrean City, we are also ranked among the top 20 beauties hence this is the moniker that is given to us.”

“Oh!!!” Lu Qingyun was indeed surprised and he was smiling awkwardly. He thought, “So it isn’t a type of herb…”

She sighed silently to herself, “He has never heard of me before. This is so embarrassing. I hope that it did not look like I am purposely hooking up to him.”

Then she smiled, “Well you know now. You are lucky that you’ve met me. I am friendlier than Ouyang Xue. You should avoid her as much as possible or you will soon hit an iron wall with her.”

She had purposely said that to discredit Ouyang Xue as she did not want him to get close to Ouyang Xue whom she considered as a rival to her. She was a little envious of Ouyang Xue when she got promoted to grand elder ahead of her. Both of them were upper third realm expert but her position in the clan was now higher than her.

Lu Qingyun was smiling weakly. He did not know what to say about the unfriendly Ouyang Xue who had offered to marry him. He had actually thought that Ouyang Xue was not that unfriendly and had a good nature.

Since he did not know what else to say, he raised his hands to bid farewell and said, “Junior Sister Leng, I shall make a move first. I’m thinking of taking a look at the fourth floor.”

With that he had left in a hurry, leaving Leng Qiuyue with an astonished countenance.

She muttered, “In the end, he still picks that impossible to learn Flaming Crimson Sword and…he isn’t interested to talk to me.”

She had a shy flush as she quietly took out a mirror from her spatial ring, “I don’t look wrong today, right?”

She was a little perplexed, “I am not attractive enough?” Then she sighed softly, “Maybe he has been with that goddess master of his for too long that all other beauties pale in comparison to her.”

Although she hated to admit it but Qin Keqin was the most beautiful person that she had ever seen. There was something about her that was heavenly and enticing at the same time, giving one the impression that she was not from anywhere in the celestial realm.

This was the very first time that she had taken the initiative to approach a likeable man and this was also the first time that she felt so defeated even before she had started.

She had actually thought of following him to the fourth floor but her sigil ring only allowed her permission till to the third floor. So it was impossible for her to even go after him.

“What is this weird feeling that I’ve got? Am I in love?” she heaved a soft sigh of melancholy.

The fourth floor was even grander than the third floor. There were fewer shelves but there were small chambers everywhere.

Lu Qingyun quickly took a look around.

Indeed the fourth floor contained various sword arts that were all energy techniques. In short, it was for those cultivators that had either reached the fourth realm or for practitioners that had attained the divine state of the energy enlightenment.

There were various energy techniques for sword energies, sword waves, sword bursts, distance attacks etc.

Energy techniques projected one’s inn profound energy and converted it through a powerful medium like a sword and converted it to deadly invisible energy that could hurt or kill other. The reason why the energy techniques were so formidable was because it was invisible and most opponents were defenseless against it.

However in the world of cultivators, it was less powerful than in the lower realms. It was because anyone who had attained to the cultivation realm of the fourth realm could sense and see the invisible energies. But against the third realm and below, it was rightful useful.

Also, most of the accounts of the energy techniques were mostly exaggeration. People tended to exaggerated accounts which they could not see and fear.

The energy techniques were actually weaker than most of the third realm sword arts on the third floor because the sword arts of the third floor emphasis on the martial power of the practitioner to give a devastating impact.

Again, martial power had also come from one’s inner profound energy. Using a medium like the sword, one could display around 50% of one’s martial power. But the martial power for the energy techniques would drop to 30%. Naturally the martial power output could drop or rise depending on the practitioner but this was the rough theory.

Martial power could be raised close to 80% to 100% by using palm, fist or finger techniques where there was no medium that was being used. Although the martial power was great, the killing effectiveness may lose to a powerful medium like the sword because the sword was a better weapon than being unarmed.

No matter if it was a third realm or a fourth realm sword art, it was extremely tiring to use because it required plenty of profound energies from the practitioner to use. Hence, there were many cultivators like Qin Keqin who preferred to use their unarmed martial skills rather than a weapon.

Qin Keqin was actually equally proficient with both weapon and her unarmed martial skills. By choice, she had preferred to use her unarmed martial skills more not because it was tiring for her to use a sword. A seventh realm cultivator like her had already reached the level where using sword or unarmed made little different in the drain of their profound strength.

Lu Qingyun spent three additional hours to analyze the sword arts on the fourth floor.

He had soon come to a conclusion. In order to practice the sword arts that were on the fourth floor, he would need to at least master the channeling art of channel his profound energy into his sword first. This sword art was actually the foundation of all the third realm sword arts. When one comes to the fourth realm, it was assumed that they had already known this foundation.

It made total sense to him. First channel the profound energy from within him to the sword as a medium. When the profound energy was gathered in strength, one could harness this powerful force and unleashed it into projected profound energy called ‘sword energies’.

It was not easy to master the projected energies. In reality, although fourth realm cultivators could see or sense the invisible energies, more than 70% of the fourth realm cultivators and above had no potential to reach the energy awakening state. This really had to do with talent and one’s divine state of awakening.

It was no wonder why there was no fifth floor here. It was because the energy techniques were really the epitome of the sword art level. Cultivators of the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh would spend years studying the energy techniques to make minute improvements.

Some of the sword arts here were extremely difficult for a fourth realm cultivator and may be suitable for a sixth or seventh realm cultivator expert.

Just as Lu Qingyun was about to leave, he had flipped to an interesting sword art manual, the Phoenix Burst. This sword art was an advance energy skill that was more suitable for a sixth realm cultivator as it made use of one’s profound aura to give shape to the profound energy, shaping it like a phoenix. Unlike the faster energy projectiles, this was not fast, not invisible and even clumsy.

But he had found it to be interesting so he had decided to study it.

He was strongly attracted to anything that had flames or fire.

When he had left the fourth floor and descended down, there was no sight of Leng Qiuyue.

So he quickly looked for Lie Xingyuan and found her, “I have found three sword arts to study and one of the sword arts is for you. Take a look later.”

Lie Xingyuan was startled, “You have spent time looking for a sword art for me?”

Lu Qingyun chuckled, “I actually don’t know if you like it or not. Don’t worry about me, alright? There are so many choices that I don’t know what to choose anyway. You can study mine if you want to too.”

Lie Xingyuan nodded quietly. Senior brother, you’re so good to me…

When Lu Qingyun gave the signet ring to Elder Kongshi to inspect his choices, Elder Kongshi smiled when he saw the Winds Entropy Dance. “This is an easy to pick for a first realm cultivator although this is a third realm sword art.”

But when he saw the Flaming Crimson Sword and the Phoenix Burst, his jaws almost dropped. It was because both sword arts were beyond that of a third, fourth and even a fifth realm expert. “Mm, you’re sure?”

Lu Qingyun laughed softly, “I am just curious and like to take a closer look.”

Elder Kongshi smiled weakly, “Alright then…” But he was secretly thinking that he should pick at least one or two sword manuals from the first and second floor. But it turned out that this senior brother was having his head in the clouds and was being impractical.

But he kept those thoughts to himself and soon handed over the sword manuals to Lu Qingyun and Lie Xingyuan, “Here you go. May the heavens watch over you and you will see improvements soon.”

Lu Qingyun said with a broad grin, “Alas, thank you so much. I’ll definitely make improvements with these sword manuals.”

Elder Kongshi: … (like real)

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Chapter 35: Visiting the Red Heaven Sword Library (2)

Lu Qingyun was now on the third floor. It was not only spacious but was grand. He did not see anyone around when he had first stepped in.

He thought, “It seems that not many are granted access in here. Great, then I can have the entire place to myself.”

So he immediately marched to the nearest shelf.

But how wrong he was that he thought that there was no one.

No sooner had he lifted a sword manual to check its content, he could see that there was a lovely maiden standing quietly at the corner.

He had remembered seeing her as one of the core protégés but did not know her name. At that time, she was just standing on her own, making no effort to greet him or to talk to him.

This lovely maiden was the renowned icy beauty and second disciple of Shi Guanyin. Her name was Leng Qiuyue and she was an upper third realm expert.

As she was an outstanding beauty along with Ouyang Xue, he could not help remembering her as one of the core protégés.

But because he felt that it was rude to talk to someone who was not interested to talk to him and that he did not want to bring any attention to himself, so he quickly got to business; he was more interested in browsing the sword manuals. So he was flipping randomly to look for a suitable sword manual for himself and for Lie Xingyuan.

“Xingyuan is a maiden. Her profound foundation may be better than me but she shouldn’t do the heavy lifting work. Let me look for an elegant and internal energy sword art for her. As for me, I shall look for something that can work on my profound strength and be useful to protect her…”

He was really lucky. He soon found an interesting sword art name the Winds Entropy Dance. He thought, “Good. I get this for Xingyuan then…”

Leng Qiuyue was actually pretending to browse the sword manuals. She was actually secretly peeking at what Lu Qingyun was doing.

“He is actually a fine looking young man. Unfortunately, he is only a lowly first realm core cultivator. Although he has the golden roc flame but it is such a waste on him. Did he even know that reaching the third realm will be a hard one and that he has to reach the sixth realm in order to fully utilize his golden roc flame to its full potential? Only a cultivation expert who has reached the soul level of the supremacy level can fully tap into a soul entity for its full potential.” She was muttering to herself.

She knitted her brows, “He didn’t even take a second glance at me or bother to talk to me. Why should I pay such a close attention to him? He only has a handsome face. He is nothing but a good-for-nothing first realm cultivator. What is a first realm cultivator doing on the third floor anyway? And who is the one that gives him such a permission? Our this new sect leader is seriously abusing her power for this disciple of his.”

Then she was noticing that he was randomly flipping through dozens of sword manuals in a fast pace and she was soon annoyed. “Do you even have the patience to go through a sword manual and try to understand its profound concept? You are just a noob trying to learn something that is out of your level.”

She did not know that Lu Qingyun was actually very quick with his fingers due to long years of picking hundreds of herbs and separating them faster than anyone. In fact, he could do it a hundred times faster than anyone. For a year, his old master had trained him by mixing thousands of colored beans and ordering him to sort them out.

His old master had told him, “Beans are small and difficult to sort. Although all herbs look almost the same but each of the herbs have different colors that mark their potency and health. I want you to read all their vibrancy with accuracy.”

So Lu Qingyun spent a full day sorting the beans and eventually it became half a day, three hours, 1 hour and in no time, he could finish sorting thousands of beans in just ten minutes.

That was the main reason his movements had been so quick.

But of course just practicing on his hands movement alone was not enough. Lu Qingyun was equally fast with his eyes.

As he flipped through the sword manuals, he had actually read the titles of the sword manuals and its basic concept. For some unknown reasons, he found himself able to understand how good or bad a sword manual really was.

There was actually no swordplay that he could not understand or unable to pick up. Of course, practicing was another thing but the difficulty was not there. He was only limited by his lack of profound strength.

He was actually thinking, “Maybe I have an affinity with the sword or maybe I am just randomly looking.”

He did not pay much attention to it.

But little did he know now that in the past reincarnation, he was actually one of the greatest sword art experts in the six realms. In fact, he had once sat at the highest pinnacle and was one of the three greatest ancient immortals that were ever known.

Leng Qiuyue took another secret peek at him, “Don’t tell me that he is actually trying to impress me and to get my attention by flipping the sword manuals?”

Then she had noticed that he had picked the Winds Entropy Dance. “Although this is a third realm sword art, this is easy to be picked up but it is also one of the hardest to truly master. He seems to have a gentle disposition so I guess it is suitable for him.”

All of a sudden she saw that he had left for other areas. She was a little disappointed…

Lu Qingyun had almost done with this shelf except for that one corner where Leng Qingyue was.

As he did not want to disturb her, he had left quickly to look for a suitable sword manual for himself. He was soon flipping through the introduction concept of the various sword manuals and the flipping sounds could be heard quite loudly as he went from one shelf to another.

One hour had passed…

Two hour had passed…

And he was still flipping through…

Leng Qingyue was a little speechless. “Although he may be trying to impress me but this is a library. The way he is showing disrespect to the sword manuals is really too much.”

She suddenly had a flush, “Maybe he is trying very hard to get my attention?”

She did not like to talk to anyone, even her fellow core protégés as she found them to be boorish and even schemers. But toward Lu Qingyun, she actually had a good impression of him.

“Maybe I should go and check on what he is doing?”

This actually took her a great deal of courage to do so as she walked quietly to where he was.

At this moment Lu Qingyun had stopped flipping and he was curiously looking at an interesting sword art as he muttered, “This is the Flaming Crimson Sword?”

He had actually re-read its introduction three times. For some unknown reasons, he was drawn to this sword art even before he had finished reading its sword concept and practices.

This Flaming Crimson Sword was difficult to even get past the first stage. It was because its practitioner had to consume a great deal of his spiritual inner sea to use it in order to unleash its full power.

At the third stage, spiritual flames would burst out from the practitioner’s sword and it would be even more devastating.

This was indeed a superior swordplay.

But for someone like Lu Qingyun who was weak in his cultivation core, he actually should not pick this type of sword art but he found himself muttering, “I pick this then.”

His mutterings were overheard by Leng Qiuyue who said, “You really should not pick this sword art. Although it is just a third realm sword art but there are no third realm experts that have the profound strength to really get past to the second stage. In order to reach the third stage, you may even need to be a fifth realm or a sixth realm expert. Moreover this sword art takes too much time and will burn your spiritual sea often, leaving you in a mess and haggard condition. I’m not surprise if you go berserk with phenomenon deviation sooner or later if you practice it.”

Lu Qingyun looked up and smiled weakly, “Junior sister…”

Leng Qiuyue interrupted coldly, “Who is your protégé sister? I’m a third realm expert while you are just a lowly first ream expert…”

Lu Qingyun smiled awkwardly as he muttered, “Yes, yes…”

Leng Qiuyue was actually cursing herself and wished that she could kick herself. She wanted to warn him but end up being so rude to him. She did not have a habit of being a friendly person and she often did not mince her words. But this time she wished that she had…

So she quickly added, “There is nothing shameful being a first realm expert. I was once a first realm expert too. If you work hard, in no time, you will free yourself from the shackles of being a first realm practitioner and be a second realm master practitioner. So work hard.”

Then she shyly said with a little hesitation, “…Senior brother.”

Lu Qingyun said as he tapped the sword manual with his ring, “That’s right.”

Leng Qiuyue almost fainted on the spot, “Did you just hear what I’ve just said to you? Why did you tap your ring on it? Do you know that this entire floor is the library for all the third realm sword arts? You should only be browsing through it and not picking any sword manuals. You are only harming yourself if you do so. I am really not belittling you but you should cultivate hard for now in order to reach the third realm with as much foundation as possible first. Or else you will never be able to reach the third realm level in the future.”

Lu Qiuyun politely said awkwardly, “I’ve just reached the initial third realm now. That is why I am choosing a sword manual from here-”

Leng Qiuyue was startled as she suddenly gasped with a soft surprise, “You are a third realm expert now?!”

Was he not just a lowly good-for-nothing first realm cultivator just a while ago when he was tested via the cultivation testing stone? How could anyone jump two big realms in less than a month?

“You are sure?” Leng Qingyue asked curiously.

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “I am really sure about it.”

Leng Qiugyue: …

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Chapter 34: Visiting the Red Heaven Sword Library (1)

The next day as Lu Qingyun made his way to the Red Heaven Sword Library, Lie Xingyuan explained to him. “Usually only when an ordinary protégé has reached the intermediate master practitioner level, the masters of the various martial halls will allow them to go to their martial halls to pick a skill or two. Or else, there will be daily martial practices in the outer courts.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “I’ve thought that this may be the case. But why is that no one is asking me to attend any of the martial practices?”

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “That is because you’re their senior brother. Which masters or elders will dare to ask you to go for any martial practices? Moreover you are also a core protégé now. Usually core protégés do not need to go to the outer courts for their martial practice and they have to practice the more advance skills alone. You are basically left on your own now, since your master is always missing.”

When she mentioned his master, there was a slow flash in her eyes…

She quickly added, “Should the ordinary protégé managed to reach the upper master practitioner level, they may be allowed to access the second level but only after a stringent competition or deserving merit. It is not as simple as simple as you are a second realm expert therefore you’re allowed access to the second floor. Most second realm protégés here have never even stepped into any of the second floor library of the six martial halls.”

Lu Qingyun smiled, “It does seem that Grand Elder Celestial Shi is quite kind to me.”

Lie Xingyuan nodded lightly but she was saying silently, “That’s only because she feels indebted to your master for ‘saving’ her.”

As Lu Qingyun was chatting with her, he was secretly heaving a soft sigh of relief. For the past two days, he had been quietly observing her as he was really worried what had exactly happened that day.

He was still secretly bothered when she said that she was so afraid that she might never see him again. He was not stupid. Something serious had happened to her.

But because she did not mention it, he did not want to force her to reveal what had happened that day. He could only quietly observe her. He had a quiet resolute not to let her out of his sight again, at least not out of his sight for an extended period.

That night when she had suddenly fell into his embrace, he was suddenly quite startled. Till now, he was thinking on how soft her body was. He wondered if it was Qin Keqin that was in his embrace, how could it feel?

“Senior brother?”

Lu Qingyun was startled as he turned to look at Lie Xingyuan, “Yes?”

Lie Xingyuan said, “I’ve been calling you a few times. What are you thinking about? You’re thinking of sect leader?”

Lu Qingyun laughed, “I will not tell you…”

“You have been calling her in your sleep this morning and it is quite loud,” she said quietly.

Lu Qingyun was startled as he quickly looked around his surroundings, just in case that there were people around before he whispered. “Erm, you mustn’t tell anyone. Especially not sect leader. I am just having some fantasies about her, that’s all. It is impossible between us.”

Indeed he was having some fantasies about Qin Keqin in his wet dreams. Now that he had attained to the third realm enlighten celestial level, he could now shut off his thoughts from Yan’Er. Therefore last night he decided to do some testing secretly.

Lie Xingyuan was smiling weakly, “I won’t tell anyone. Please don’t worry about it.” But she was secretly thinking, “The way she looks at you, I don’t think she thinks of you as just a disciple. If I were you, I would risk telling her even if I know I may get reject. It is better than not letting your feeling known to her.”

She could say that because she was standing on a third party perspective but in reality she lacked the courage to tell Lu Qingyun that she liked him.

“It looks like we’re here now.” Lu Qingyun said as he saw the building ahead.

Lie Xingyuan nodded, “Yes, we’re here. Let’s go in.”

When they had entered the entrance of the building, there were three elders who were sitting inside.

Lu Qingyun was able to recognize one of the elder to be Elder Kongshi so he quickly greeted, “Elder Kongshi.”

Lie Xingyuan greeted, “Elder Kongshi, Elder Xu, Elder Zhu.”

Elder Kongshi smiled when he saw him, “So it is senior brother.” He quickly took out a green ring and said respectfully, “This ring will grant you unlimited access to all the floors of the Red Heaven Sword Library. Just tap on the sword manual that you like and return here for the true copy. You are only allowed to take up to three sword manuals. So make your choice carefully. After you have taken the sword manuals from me later, usually there is a grace period of 3 months to return it and you’re not allowed to take out the same sword manual again for another six months. However, we will make it an exception for you and attach no grace period.”

Lu Qingyun thanked him immediately, “Thank you so much. I’ve an additional favor. Do you think that I can bring my attendant Xingyuan along.”

Elder Kongshi laughed hoarsely, “Sure you can. Here, here is another ring.”

Lie Xingyuan was startled as she thought, “Huh? It is so simple? He didn’t question our intentions?”

Even Lu Qingyun was startled by the swift response that was given by Elder Kongshi. He was actually planning to use his supreme reasoning to persuade him. But he guessed that it was totally unnecessary.

Elder Kongshi laughed, “Go ahead and feel at home here. You are after all our senior brother and possibly the future sect leader.”

Lu Qingyun smiled weakly, “In that case then we shall make a move ahead first. Thank you once more. Farewell elders.”

With that, Xingyuan and he had stepped into the first floor of the Red Heaven Sword Library.

When Lu Qingyun had entered the Red Heaven Sword Library, quite a few protégés were surprised to see him and they hastily greeted this senior brother of theirs.

“It’s alright. We are just browsing through the sword manuals as well. Please continue what you are doing.” He quickly said to everyone.

Lie Xingyuan whispered to him, “So it is what it looks like. I’ve never been here. If senior brother does not bring me here, I’m afraid that I will need to wait ten long years to even allow a chance to enter just the first floor.”

Lu Qingyun smiled as he walked around. There were hundreds of sword manuals all over the place and the place was really big.

These sword manuals were only an introductory copy and were incomplete. In order to obtain the complete copy, everyone had to tap on the sword manual with their clan ring and returned to the entrance where the elders were. The elders would then retrieve a copy for them to be studied for a period of 3 months.

Lu Qingyun quickly looked at the shelves and were dismayed that there were quite a number of sword manuals that were marked with the word ‘reserve’. This means that it was currently in use by the other protégés.

Lie Xingyuan chuckled softly when she saw his disappointment, “There are many protégés who frequent the first floor hence it is difficult to find a decent sword manual that isn’t reserve. The ones that are not reserved are probably not the good ones. Why don’t we go to the second floor or even higher?”

Lu Qingyun nodded and smiled, “I’ve almost forgotten that we are allowed to go to the higher floor. Let’s go!”

Soon they were on the second floor.

The second floor was equally big but was more spacious. It seemed that there were not many shelves on the second floor hence it looked more spacious.

It was not unusual to Lu Qingyun because he knew that it was much more difficult to elevate an swordplay to the second realm level and second realm swordplay was less plentiful.

If the first floor was the basic introduction to swordplay then the second floor was where the advance swordplay was housed.

Lu Qingyun was immediately intrigued by the number of advance sword manuals and was overwhelmed. He muttered, “All these are good swordplay. If anyone is to practice just one of this swordplay then they will be considered an expert swordsman.”

Lie Xingyuan took a few look and said, “Right. But senior brother, actually you should just go up to the third floor to have a look.”

“Oh?” he said curiously.

“Although these sword manuals are really good swordplay but most do not require the use of any profound strength to execute. Therefore the strength is lacking. Now that senior brother you are a third realm expert now, you will be able to exercise your profound strength into martial power. Therefore you should directly go to the third floor to have a look.”

Lu Qingyun nodded and he smiled, “You’re right. So let’s us go now.”

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “Senior brother, you go ahead. I shall stay on this floor instead.”

Lu Qingyun was startled, “Why? Aren’t you a third realm expert too?”

Lie Xingyuan lowered her glances, “At the moment, I don’t want anyone to know that I am a third realm expert. I just want to be inconspicuous as much as possible.”

“Erm…” Lu Qingyun tried to say something but this was indeed a good reason.

“Also, it isn’t a good idea for me to be seen on the third floor with you. Although Grand Elder Celestial Shi and Elder Kongshi are gracious to let me come with you but I should keep out of sight as much as possible. This is for my own good and for you.”

Then she smiled, “The advance swordplay here is good enough for me. So please don’t worry about me, alright? Please go ahead.”

“This…” Lu Qingyun really did not know what to say.

Finally he said, “Alright then.” He had made up his mind to find a suitable sword manual for her. After all, he was allowed to pick up to three sword manuals and he was actually content with just one.

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “I will wait on this floor for you. Please take your time to look for your chosen sword manuals.”

Lu Qingyun nodded reluctantly, “Alright. I will be back soon.”

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Chapter 33: Shi Guanyin’s Visit

Lu Qingyun was displaying a swordplay that he had learnt from his old master to Lie Xingyuan in the practice courtyard of his abode.

“This stroke is the Little Leaves Hovering and this stroke is the triple slash.”

Lie Xingyuan was startled as she watched the display. Although his swordplay was ordinary, the way he had displayed it was extremely swift and smooth. In fact, it had already reached to the standard of a third realm swordplay by the speed alone.

She was actually thinking, “Senior brother is actually so good with the sword? I am really surprised. He can easily defeat any of the ordinary protégés with his sword. Why is he so highly accomplished? But he is only a lowly cultivator.”

Then she corrected herself, “Not anymore. He is now an initial third realm expert. The same as me now.”

By right when she had advanced to the third realm, she ought to report it to the elders. It was because third realm experts were all considered to be valuable clan resources and were highly regarded. In fact, third realm experts were all inner protégés and had a chance to be masters and elders of the clan.

However she decided not to report her new cultivation level to the elders. It was because she still want to be his personal attendant…

Lu Qingyun displayed another move and asked Lie Xingyuan, “What do you think of this move? This is the encircle slash. I am a little out of practice but I am quite proud of it. I took months of practice just to get it right.”

This encircle slash combined both a slashing arc and a movement step as the practitioner turned his body quickly around. Indeed it was not an easy sword maneuver to execute. The practitioner had to be fast to turn around quickly and to steady the footing at the same time while minimizing the exposure to opening weakness as quickly as possible.

Lie Xingyuan smiled, “It seems that senior brother already knows more about swordplay than me. I am indeed incomparable to you. This sword stroke is properly executed. I can really find no flaws in it-”

“Indeed this is a properly executed swordplay. However there are still improvements to be made. Although it is just a basic stroke but you can combine it with the more advance strokes that are in my Red Heaven Sword Library.”

Lu Qingyun and Lie Xingyuan were startled and they quickly turned around to see that the speaker was Celestial Shi Guanyin and with her was Elder Kongshi.

They were both clapping and as soon as Lu Qingyun had turned around, they respectfully bowed with their hands.

Lie Xingyuan immediately greeted, “Grand Elder Celestial Shi, Elder Kongshi.”

Shi Guanyin laughed as she said, “Senior Brother Lu, how are you?”

Lie Xingyuan almost could not suppress her will to giggle. It was because it was funny to have Celestial Shi Guanyin who was a grand elder to call Lu Qingyun her senior brother.

Lu Qingyun bowed with his hands, “Senior, I am well. Indeed, I have a lot to learn in regards to swordplay.”

Shi Guanyin smiled, “Why don’t you come to my Red Heaven Sword Library to pick a few sword manuals for some insights?”

Elder Kongshi was also smiling, “Senior Brother Lu, please feel welcome to come to the Red Heaven Sword Library to pick some sword manuals. I’m the elder that is in charge of the Red Heaven Sword Library.”

Shi Guanyin added, “There are altogether four levels to the Red Heaven Sword Library. As your cultivation realm improves, the protégés will be able to proceed to the next level of the library. So a fourth realm expert may enter the fourth level while a first realm expert may enter only the first floor. However, I want to make this an exception for you. You are allowed to gain free access to all the levels of the Red Heaven Sword Library.”

Lie Xingyuan was secretly startled. It was because the Red Heaven Sword Hall guarded its third and fourth floor like its heavenly secret, disallowing even the core protégés from the other martial halls to enter. She would actually allow Lu Qingyun to enter even the fourth floor of the Red Heaven Sword Library?

The Red Heaven Sword Library was guarded by Elder Kongshi and although he was just an ordinary elder but he was actually an intermediate fourth realm expert with extremely formidable swordplay under his sleeves.

It was said that Elder Kongshi was already a thousand year old and he was the oldest protégé in the entire Heavens Ridge Ville.

Lu Qingyun was also startled, “Is that really alright?”

Shi Guanyin smiled affectionately, “Of course it is. In fact you don’t even need a token. Just come anytime you’re free.”

Then she smiled, “After all, I like to see you doing well for the internal core protégés martial competition too.”

Lu Qingyun had thought that Celestial Shi Guanyin was an unfriendly person but it seemed that he was totally wrong about her. So he replied, “Then I thank you in advance.”

He also made a polite hand bow to Elder Kongshi as an appreciation.

Shi Guanyin chuckled softly, “There is no need to thank me. We are all in the same clan. By the way, I’ve come to see sect leader. Is she around?”

Lu Qingyun answered awkwardly as he shook his head, “I’m afraid that she won’t be in until a few days later.”

Shi Guanyin was a little surprised, “Oh? I’ve thought that she is eager to move in so I’ve thought that she might be around.”

Lie Xingyuan was smiling weakly to herself, “She is eager to move in till she has seen me…”

Shi Guanyin looked a little disappointed before she smiled, “In that case, I shall take my leave first. Please help me to send her my regards. Farewell.”

Lu Qingyun replied, “I will. Farewell.”

Lie Xingyuan smiled to him after Shi Guanyin and Elder Kongshi had left, “Senior brother, this is a golden opportunity for you. Why don’t you take a look?”

Lu Qingyun said, “How about tomorrow then? If we go there immediately today, this is a little too shameful to say that we are lusting after the sword manuals of the Red Heaven Sword Library and erm, a little too thick skin.”

Lie Xingyuan laughed, “You’re right. Alright, then I shall take you there tomorrow. However I can’t enter the place so I just wait for you outside.”

Lu Qingyun was looking a little displeased, “Since that Elder Kongshi is in charge, tomorrow I shall ask him to make an exception for you.”

Lie Xingyuan smiled weakly, “They are already bending the rules for you. I am just an ordinary protégé. There is no need to break any rule just for me. In the end, you will be owing them an extra favor. Regarding favors, it is always not a good idea to owe too many. One day, you have to return it.”

Lu Qingyun said nonchalantly, “So be it then. There is no harm asking.”

Lie Xingyuan: …

She was sighing softly to herself, “Senior brother, why are you so good to me? Do you know that one day I will leaving here?”

When Shi Guanyin had left the vicinity of Lu Qingyun’s abode, she whispered to Elder Kongshi, “I want Tang Bufan to be dead.”

Elder Kongshi nodded, “He had already fled but I’ve already hired the assassins from the Black Hands Guild to hunt after him.”

Shi Guanyin nodded, “That’s good. I want him to die without a full corpse.”

Then she paused to ask quietly, “What do you think of Lu Qingyun’s swordplay?”

Elder Kongshi replied, “He can actually turn his body around in a blink of an eye and still maintain his original attack stance. Even I can’t do that. But seeing is believing.”

Shi Guanyin nodded, “He is like a one in a million. I still can’t believe that he is only a first realm lowly cultivator.”

“Same here,” answered Elder Kongshi.

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