Chapter 4 – Enemy
It hadn’t even been half a day and Grandfather and Little Brother already had an accident?
Those people that hated me, those fellows that called me a jinx for all these years, they didn’t even have enough time to avoid me, so why would they go harm Grandfather and Little Brother?
Could it be an enemy?
Could it be the people that massacred over 1,000 Chen Clan members that year?
But so many years had passed; why didn’t they exterminate our family by the roots earlier? Why would they wait until today?
Chen Xi felt the vital energy and blood in his entire body surge, his head was throbbing and felt like it was about to explode!
He was like a cornered wild animal as he madly charged out of his house, out of the residential district, and towards the outside of the city.
Grandfather and Little Brother will be fine… They will be….
Unbeknownst to him, he was yelling as he ran down the street.
Even though it was late at night, it was still bright as day in Pine Mist City. All kinds of lamps that flowed with multi-colored rays of light hung everywhere in the city. The lamps were brightly lit as if being occupied by fire dragons, clamorous and magnificent.
The streets were densely filled with pedestrians, and there was even a large and dense crowd gathered outside the city gates.
An emaciated and bony geezer with bloodied clothes and a pair of tightly shut eyes was lying on the ground. He’d obviously been dead for a long time.
Beside the body, a 12-year-old child knelt there without a word. There were no tears on his immature face, but his gaze was pale and empty, as if he were a soulless puppet.
“I know him, he’s the Skystar Institution’s Chen Hao. We’re in the same school!”
“Ah! So it’s the jinx’s young brother. The geezer at the side couldn’t be his grandfather, right?”
“Alas, it surely is. The Chen Clan’s patriarch that was extremely famous in our Pine Mist City in those years has been killed in the wilderness outside the city. Pitiable! Lamentable!”
The crowd discussed animatedly, but no one was willing to lend a hand because one was the jinx’s younger brother and the other was the jinx’s grandfather. They weren’t willing to be stained with misfortune.
“Everyone, move aside. The jinx has come!” A sharp voice abruptly sounded. Upon hearing the voice, the large crowd abruptly opened up a path like they were avoiding the plague.
Under the strange gazes of the crowd, a gaunt figure charged over as if he had gone mad. It was obviously Chen Xi.
“Grandfather!” Chen Xi thoroughly severed the hopes inside his heart when he saw the familiar figure that quietly lay on the ground. His heart ached as if it had been pierced by 10,000 arrows and his body started trembling involuntarily.
As he walked step by step to arrive before his grandfather’s corpse, his stiff and frosty face didn’t change, but his eyes were fully red.
“Brother…” An extremely hoarse and low but familiar voice sounded, causing Chen Xi’s mind to shake. What he saw was his younger brother looking at him like a puppet with a pair of empty and lackluster eyes.
Who was it?
Who exactly did it?
Chen Xi’s mind was in even more agony. His nails had deeply sunken into his palm and blood was flowing out, but he wasn’t aware at all.
How he absolutely hated himself for being too incapable, hated himself for facing the mocking and ridicule from the surrounding people but being powerless to change it…
If you want to punish someone, then punish me and me alone. Why didn’t you let my Chen Clan or my parents or my grandfather go?
Chen Xi’s heart was roaring in a frenzy and he almost lost control.
Chen Hao seemed to be unable to persist any longer. He weakly shut his eyes before fainting in Chen Xi’s arms.
Chen Xi gazed at his younger brother in his arms, noticing the exhaustion and helplessness on his younger brother’s immature face before he abruptly jolted awake from the infinite rage within his heart. Grandfather is already dead. I can’t let anything happen to Little Brother.
He carried his younger brother on his back and his grandfather’s corpse in his arms as he staggered back into the city and made his way home.
“The jinx has finally left. Ha! Look at that, after so many years, he caused his grandfather’s death. Tsk, sure enough, his misfortune is fully raging.”
“Talk softly. Do you have a death wish? Careful, you might get stained by misfortune and throw away your life if you continue cursing the jinx!”
“Che, talking about me? Didn’t you call him jinx as well?”
“Continue acting. Perhaps in your heart, you’re even thinking of when the jinx will cause his younger brother’s death, right!?”
On the way home, the droning sounds of discussions that were accompanied by the piercingly cold night breeze floated into Chen Xi’s ears. They were like sharp, silver needles that deeply pierced into his heart.
Yet he still kept to himself and walked forward like a tombstone that had experienced years of being slapped by the waves of the ocean. The pain went so deep that it pierced his bones, but he was as unyielding as always.
No, I will always remember this moment.
If I don’t die, then one day I’ll surely step on the stairway to heaven, go high beyond the clouds, and take the Milky Way and nine heavens within my arms! SUPREME!
All of you…
Wait for the day you mock yourselves.
The sky unceasingly rained upon the outskirts of the city.
Before a solitary grave mound, Chen Xi stood up and said, “Grandfather, rest in peace,” in a low voice that was calm and dull, yet sonorous and persistent.
Chen Xi had knelt before the grave for three days without food or water. He remained completely unmoved under the force of the sun and wind, and his face was ghastly pale and utterly haggard.
Seeing Chen Xi return to normal, Bai Wanqing, who stood at the side, secretly heaved a sigh of relief as she said, “Go home, Chen Hao woke up from his coma last night.”
Chen Xi nodded in agreement.
“Aunt Bai, thank you.” When they were near his house, Chen Xi stopped and thanked Bai Wanqing with an earnest expression. For these three days, Bai Wanqing was like a relative and was always at his home helping him take care of his younger brother, causing him to be extremely touched.
When everyone only knew how to mock him, there was one person that silently rushed about and exhausted themselves for him, and such a person was worthy of Chen Xi always remembering and being grateful to for his entire life.
Bai Wanqing did not expect Chen Xi to thank her so earnestly, so she jolted before saying, with a smile, “So long as you live on properly, and moreover, live better than anyone else, then that’s the best thanks to me.”
Chen Xi earnestly nodded.
Bai Wanqing chuckled and didn’t stay any longer; she turned and left.
A trace of warmth couldn’t help but pour out of Chen Xi’s heart as he watched the gentle and graceful figure vanish into the distance. Their talk caused his spirit to be refreshed and the gloominess between his brows lessened considerably.
The door swung open, and Chen Hao gazed at Chen Xi as he lightly called out, “Brother.”
Chen Xi walked forward and firmly hugged his younger brother. “It doesn’t matter if your right hand is crippled; as long as you’re alive, there’s still hope.”
That night, Chen Xi’s grandfather had fallen victim to an attack and passed away, whereas Chen Hao paid the price of an arm. As the vitality within his right arm was crippled, even if a supreme, miraculous cure that could bring back the dead were to be found for him, it would be of no use.
Chen Xi was extremely clear about exactly how much pain the loss of his right hand brought to his younger brother, as his younger brother has been obsessed with swordsmanship since a young age and had once pledged to pioneer a path of his own in the Dao of the sword. Now that his younger brother’s right hand was gone, it undoubtedly thoroughly spelled the end to the dream that his younger brother had held for so many years, and Chen Xi could imagine his pain.
“Brother, I’ve already decided to cultivate left-handed swordsmanship!” Chen Hao straightened his back. With a deep and profound gaze, he seemed as if he’d been reborn as he resolutely said, “Losing my right arm is a good thing as well. One arm, one sword. It’ll allow me to be more devoted, and my swordsmanship will be even better.”
Chen Xi looked at his younger brother, who seemed to have matured overnight, and looked at the renewed resolution that once again radiated on his face. For a moment, Chen Xi’s heart rose and fell like the waves, and he could hardly restrain his emotions. “Good! Good! Good!”
A string of saying good thrice had already fully expressed the joy in Chen Xi’s heart.
“Grandfather and I were ambushed at the Azure Wolf Gorge by three masked men. Before his death, Grandfather said that they all possessed Violet Palace Realm cultivation.”
After their meal, Chen Xi started asking about what he and grandfather encountered after leaving the city, as he wanted to figure out who exactly was the one that killed his grandfather.
However, when he heard his younger brother mention three Violet Palace Realm cultivators, Chen Xi’s heart jerked.
The path of cultivation was divided like this: Postnatal Realm, Congenital Realm, Violet Palace Realm, Golden Hall Realm, Yin-Yang Golden Core Realm, Rebirth Realm, Nether Transformation Realm, and the Earthly Immortal Realm.
The Postnatal Realm was divided into nine stages that cultivated True Essence within the body to clear the arteries and the veins, and it provided an increase in one’s lifespan of 60 years. After arriving at this realm, one would be robust and strong with Blood Essence that surges like a tide, and they will be devoid of disease.
The Congenital Realm was also divided into nine stages which practice breathing the energy of the heavens and the earth to cultivate the heart and stabilize the mind, and it provided an increase in one’s lifespan of 100 years. Upon arriving at this realm, one will have cleared and slipped out of their mortal shell to allow the physique to contain spirit; however, among the myriad people in the world, very few were able to step into the Congenital Realm!
The Violet Palace Realm steals the energy of heaven and earth to develop a Violet Palace within the Dantian. Every time one’s cultivation level increases, a True Essence star would appear within their Violet Palace, and when nine stars were strung together, the Violet Palace can be considered to have attained perfection.
This realm was also called the Realm of Touching Stars. Arriving at this realm provided an increase in one’s lifespan of 500 years. Only after reaching this realm could it be said that a cultivator had established the foundation of cultivating in the Dao and had truly stepped onto the road to immortal cultivation.
According to Chen Xi’s knowledge, not even one in 10,000 Congenital Realm experts succeed in establishing a Violet Palace. In Pine Mist City, a Violet Palace Realm cultivator was absolutely the highest tier expert. When he heard that the assailants that killed his grandfather were actually three Violet Palace Realm cultivators, the shock in Chen Xi’s heart was unimaginable.
He had only cultivated to the 3rd level of the Congenital Realm, and even this was all thanks to receiving his grandfather’s devoted guidance from a young age.
In those days, his Chen Clan was an extremely powerful, prosperous and large clan in Pine Mist City. As the Patriarch of the Chen Clan, Chen Tianli himself was a 7th star Violet Palace Realm cultivator. Even though his cultivation was crippled, the inheritance he possessed wasn’t lost. No matter how ordinary Chen Xi’s natural talent was, with the attentive imparting of knowledge from Chen Tianli, advancing into the Congenital Realm was not worth mentioning.
However, his hope to become a Violet Palace Realm cultivator was extremely small. After all, his cultivation had already stagnated at the 3rd level of the Congenital Realm for five years, so it was difficult to say whether he was capable of making an advancement.
“Right, I have a Soundsaver Talisman here. It recorded a short conversation between those three people!” Chen Hao abruptly slapped himself on the head as he spoke, then he pulled out a deep blue colored talisman and passed it to Chen Xi.
The Soundsaver Talisman was a type of auxiliary talisman. Within the cultivation world, when a cultivator went out, they often left behind a Soundsaver Talisman so they could leave a message to avoid a visiting friend from being unable to find them.
This Soundsaver Talisman was something Chen Xi crafted for his younger brother to play with, but he never imagined it would actually be put to such great use. Chen Xi’s heart felt a burst of agitation when he thought about how in a few moments, he might be able to hear the voice of the assailants who killed his grandfather.
After pouring True Essence into it, a deep blue colored bright light suddenly emerged from the Soundsaver Talisman’s surface.
“The Young Master ordered that he wanted them to be trapped alive within Pine Mist City. He wants to make them live with the rejection and mocking of the people until they drive themselves to death…”
“Put down a tight encirclement and bring them back to the city if they ever go out! This matter is related to the marriage between the young master and that person of Dragon Lake City. If anyone dares be inattentive, they’ll be killed without pardon!”
A sharp and gloomy voice that seemed as if it was a venomous snake flicking its tongue while being hidden in the shadows floated out from within the Soundsaver Talisman.
The Soundsaver Talisman transformed into a wisp of ash that flew into the air and vanished.
Chen Xi’s expression was already completely ashen.