Chapter 164, Going Against Tradition and Betraying One’s Own Morality.
Translator – Silavin
Editor – Icicle
Finalized Editor –theunfetteredsalmon
Yang Kai didn’t mind the idea of exchanging the Burning Sun’s Blast for another Martial Skill from someone else. Unfortunately, the sect did not allow disciples to exchange their Martial Skills with each other in private. When Yang Kai was about to walk off, a cold voice shouted out, “Yang Kai!”
When Yang Kai turned his head to find the source of the voice, his brows slightly furrowed. The man that stopped him was a probably 26 or 27 in age. Yang Kai could recognise him; he was Cao Zhengwen. Several months ago, he ordered that Yang Kai, Li Yuntian and others be thrown into the Forest Prison.
Cao Zhengwen took his hand out from his pocket and started walking at Yang Kai with indifference.
“Senior Brother, what do you have for me?”
Cao Zhengwen snorted. He did not bother to speak and tossed the object in his palms at Yang Kai.
Yang Kai easily caught the thing, which left Cao Zhengwen shocked for words; his lips slightly twitched. He did not expect Yang Kai to eliminate the Dark Energy attached to the object with such ease.
“What is this?” Yang Kai asked as he looked at the thing in his hand. It was a letter.
“A command for your promotion!” Cao Zhengwen said with a serious face, “The Elders have decided to promote you after your breakthrough to the Initial Elemental Stage. By the rules of High Heaven Pavilion, you have the right to be promoted from a Trial Disciple to an Ordinary Disciple.”
Yang Kai’s brows wrinkled, “Promotion?”
“Yes,” Cao Zhengwen nodded. “you have been here for three years stuck in the Tempered Body Stage so your own rank had been reduced to that of a Trial Disciple. However, you have diligently cultivated and broken through to the Initial Element Stage. As such, the Elders have decided that you should have an opportunity to be promoted!”
“An opportunity?” Yang Kai noticed that there was an underlying meaning in Cao Zhengwen’s words.
Cao Zhengwen explained, “As long as you complete the task the Elders Council issues to you, you will be promoted to an Ordinary Disciple. For the High Heaven Pavilion, such a promotion is a great honour for Trial Disciples such as yourself. This opportunity is very rare, so Junior Brother Yang, grasp this opportunity well. As for your promotion, it will depend on your skills and luck.”
“I’m not interested,” Yang Kai waved his hand and tossed the letter of promotion aside.
Cao Zhengwen’s entire complexion changed as he picked the letter back up and fiercely roared, “Yang Kai! This is a command from the Elders’ Council and you dare to reject?!”
“So what about the Elders Council?!” Yang Kai got impatient and rebuked, “I have never asked for a promotion and wish to remain as a Trial Disciple. Do they wish to force the promotion on me in that case?” Yang Kai did not know the content of the task he needed to accomplish but it would certainly not be easy. It was highly possible that he would have to take on exceptional danger to complete it.
“So, you are content with belonging in mediocrity?” Cao Zhengwen grinned with a face filled with ridicule. This promotion should have occurred after Yang Kai was rescued by Su Yan from the Forest Prison. However, even after Su Yan had saved him, he went out to the Nine Yin Valley with Xia Ning Chang, so the promotion delivery was delayed until now, after the matter at the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance.
“My mediocrity is not defined by the likes of you,” Yang Kai’s lips curled up as he walked away from Cao Zhengwen.
“Yang Kai!” Cao Zhengwen roared, attracting unnecessary attention from the High Heaven Pavilion Disciples around, “Do not think that you are the only one who obtained the opportunity in the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance and can behave like you own the place! Since you dare to disregard the Elders Council’s command, you will know the consequences personally!”
“Scram!” Yang Kai turned his head and screamed. Immediately, Evil Qi seemed to come out of his face and rushed into Cao Zhengwen, which left him stumped. When he managed to regain his composure, Yang Kai had already disappeared from his sight.
The Disciples in the Martial Skill Pavilion all remained quiet as they watched the scene play out. Everyone was secretly startled at Yang Kai’s declaration of refusal. No one would expect Yang Kai to disregard the Elders Council. This was simply unfathomable to them. They always considered the Elders Council’s words as golden rules that they have to follow regardless of the dangers and difficulties they entail. None of them would have even the slightest inclination of revolting nor resisting in their minds. But just then, they witnessed a Trial Disciple doing something that was unthinkable to them.
[Isn’t this simply disrespecting one’s own virtue? Not having an ounce of respect for one’s elders?] Many of the disciples around looked at Yang Kai with a hint of admiration but were simultaneously denouncing him. They also thought that Yang Kai was content with his own position as a Trial Disciple, hence his refusal of the promotion.
Meanwhile, Cao Zhengwen’s complexion turned pale as he stood in the same place with the letter of promotion in his hand. Although he was annoyed, he also felt empty inside. The Great Elder had personally commanded him to send Yang Kai this letter. His curiosity also got the better of him, so he peeked at the letter. [Task: to travel alone to the Ash-Grey Cloud Evil Lands to kill a cultivator not lower than your own.]
(Silavin: The hell? What kind of cunt elder would send their disciple to a slaughter house?)
This task can be classified as both easy and difficult at the same time. In Ash-Grey Cloud Evil Lands, there were innumerable Evil Cultivators. If Yang Kai was lucky to meet a Cultivator that at the same level as himself, the task would be easy. However, he had just as much chance to meet a Cultivator as strong as an Elder, in which case he would probably never leave alive.
Cao Zhengwen thought that Yang Kai would accept the task. He would have never thought that Yang Kai would be brave enough to refuse an Elders Council command in front of so many Disciples. How was he going to tell them that he failed such a simple mission? He did not move for a long time, instead, he pondered in the crowd only to finally leave the scene while clenching his teeth bitterly.
Yang Kai’s mood was not much better as well. Meeting Cao Zhengwen this early in the morning After the meeting with Cao Zhengwen early in the morning, his complexion also turned cloudy.
[If he didn’t send me here, I would not have bothered to travel so far. Why did he have to send me here? What relationship does he have with the High Heaven Pavilion that makes him want to send me here?]
After spending three years in High Heaven Pavilion and seeing the fickleness and cruelty of the people here, Yang Kai felt out of place. At the moment, the only thing that made him feel warm was only Su Yan. As his thoughts continued to wander, he also thought of Xia Ning Chang. [That’s right, there’s also Junior Sister who gives me that sense of warmth too…]
While walking in deep thought, someone rushed towards him, leaving behind a trail of fragrance in her wake as she shouted out, “Junior Brother Yang!” Yang Kai’s thoughts were interrupted as he turned his head around to see Lan Chudie.
Although her dealings within the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance were not pleasant nor favourable to him, she never provoked him. They also spent time together as a team. Yang Kai replied, “Senior Sister Lan!”
Lan Chudie smiled as her voluminous chest heaved up and down as she gasped for breath. As though she had placed all that have occurred in Heaven’s Cave Inheritance behind her, she looked at Yang Kai and spoke, “I thought that you wouldn’t care about me anymore.”
“There’s no such thing, senior Sister. I will always take you into consideration,” Yang Kai smiled back.
Lan Chudie’s eyes lit up as she continued to stare at Yang Kai, “I was wrong when we were inside the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance, but could you do me a favour as your Senior Sister and not mention my mistakes in the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance?” Lan Chudie was an intelligent woman who spoke without any reservation. She was talking about the matters in the Heaven’s Cave Inheritance. She wished to come clean with Yang Kai.
Yang Kai was not such a mean spirited person to hold such matters over her head even if she did not remind him. However, when she apologised, he could not help but feel the bad impression she left him diminish a little. He maintained his friendly smile as he shook his head, “Senior Sister, I thought you were going to talk to me about something more serious.”
“Junior Brother, when you put it that way, I feel at ease.” Lan Chudie patted her chest, displaying a relaxed expression as though she had let go of a heavy load in her heart. However, her brows suddenly wrinkled as a cord struck within her. “Junior Brother, were you a little too rash to decline the Elders Council’s command? You might bring yourself a lot of trouble.”
“Cao Zhengwen has already said that I am content with being a mediocre person. Since I am content, why bother changing anything?”
Before Lan Chudie could continue their short-lived conversation, Yang Kai abruptly interrupted her as she opened her mouth to speak, “I’m not feeling so good to speak with anyone today. I’m sorry, excuse me and goodbye.”
Lan Chudie was startled but nodded with a smile. She could tell from Yang Kai’s wrinkled brows, he was serious. Although he spoke in a gentle tone, it was likely that if she continued to pester him, he would be weary of their conversation.
After he said farewell to Lan Chudie, Yang Kai returned to his Cave Mansion. He found that Xia Ning Chang had vanished and knew that she had departed. When he continued to look around, he found two new bonsai trees placed here. The bonsai tree seemed familiar and Yang Kai remembered where he saw them; it was by the Contribution Hall’s counter. These bonsai were being taken care of by Meng Wuya, but they were moved here by Xia Ning Chang.
Meanwhile, a huge wave of gossip was spreading in the High Heaven Pavilion. Back at the place where the Great Elders gathered, Cao Zhengwen explained the frustrating situation in the morning to Wei Xitong, causing him to choke on his tea.
(Silavin: Bitch should have choked on a dick)
“Did he really reject it?” The Great Elder had thought of countless possibilities for Yang Kai to respond but he had never expected the boy to decline.
“Yes…” Cao Zhengwen resentfully and awkwardly replied. “He did not only reject. He dared to slander the Elders Council’s dignity in front of so many Disciples. Great Elder, perhaps after being fortunate enough to obtain a strong Martial Skill and displaying it within Heaven’s Cave Inheritance, he became arrogant. Otherwise, would he have the guts display such disrespect? This person must be punished for his insolence, else others would follow his example.”
“Shut up!” Wei Xi Tong pounded the table and glared at Cao Zhengwen, “How dare you report back to us without completing your own task? Did you even try to force him?”
Cao Zhengwen’s mind became vacant as he could not understand the thoughts of the Great Elder. [Why would I wish to bully someone like that? Wouldn’t I make myself look bad? Likewise, when he rejects, isn’t it better? You could always take this opportunity to teach him a lesson. Great Elder, I simply don’t understand why you are going through so much trouble for him.] Cao Zhengwen was confused, but he stayed silent for fear of worsening the Great Elder’s mood any further.
“Go! Do anything to make him accept the command! He must accept it, even if you have to kneel!” Wei Xitong growled in a low voice.
Cao Zhengwen was left startled. [I’m supposed to kneel down to beg him to accept the command?!]
“What are you waiting for?!” the Great Elder slammed his palm against the table, kicking up a dust cloud.
“Yes!” Cao Zhengwen hastily replied as he immediately retreated away.
Meanwhile, the Second Elder of High Heaven Pavilion, Su Xuan Wu, sat crossed-legged on the ground in front of a checkerboard filled with black and white pieces. The black was on the offensive; viciously attacking the white, but the white pieces had defences that held up, seemingly impenetrable. It was a tense match that seemed to eventually result in a draw unless one side made a mistake.
After he listened to a disciple report the incident, Su Xuan Wu could not help but reveal a strange look as he asked, “He refused?”
The disciple explained, “Yes. He flagrantly and superciliously rejected it!”
Su Xuan Wu did not know how to react, but he finally laughed, “Rejection is good! Rejection is very good! Elder Brother, it would be stupid of him to lift a boulder to drop on his own foot.”
(Silavin: Su Xuan Wu is mocking that bitch while praising Yang Kai. That man is stupid enough to think that Yang Kai would choose a path of self-destruction but unfortunately for him, Yang Kai is smart to be able to discern and choose what is best for himself.)
Silavin: There were some changes to my comments to make it look more proper… I don’t know why but when I read it, it sounds really eerie…