Chapter 307: Calligraphy and Hemorrhaging (7)

When Wen Jiu returned from his daily excursion and tasks, he found to his delight that the innkeeper did not run and grab the edge of his robes, demanding for the young girl to stop her weird antics. In his delight, the handsome man even hummed a delightful tone under his breath, and his steps became light.

The happy atmosphere exuding from Wen Jiu caused many heads to turn, particularly those of young females firmly captured in the throes of youth.

Contrary to his expectations, Wen Jiu paid them no concern, instead heading directly towards the room situated at the highest floor of the sorely undecorated inn.

When he knocked on the door, what emerged was not a delicate young girl staring at him with a hint of discontent in her scarlet irises, but a pair of dark bags begging for help.

“…what?”

“Nothing.”

The young girl murmured and immediately retreated into the room upon a mysterious signal; the door closed before the handsome man in the time it took for his stuttering mind to recover. Wen Jiu stared at the cold doorframe for a few minutes in silence, his mind brimming with more than a few questions.

Those were… ink stains over her fingers and palms? The hem of her robes – weren’t they also stained with a dark violet ink?

Just what was she doing inside?

The handsome man stood silently for a few moments, deep in thought.

Ultimately, Wen Jiu heaved a light sigh and turned around to return to his room, lightly shaking his head as his feet tread on the patterned wooden floor.

Phasing its head through the fragile walls of the room, Xilong tutted in disdain as it carefully observed the solitary figure. The cyan glow exuding from its claws retracted, and the scarlet dragon returned to supervise the young girl’s practice.

“Have you finished the set?”

In the span of a day, a thoroughly cleaned and vibrant room had been decimated.

“Not yet. There are three remaining.”

On the bed, on the wooden dresser, and all over the hardwood floor, sheets of paper stained in dark violet ink were scattered all over. Their marred surfaces sang of a pure and innocent white distorted by the violet ink, and the markings of a brush sealed their demise.

“Three remaining? How quick – lets finish them before the sun sets, ah?”

Seated at the bare drawing table was a young girl partially covered in ink. Her right hand held a brush dripping with violet ink whilst her left forced the page to remain in the same position.

Shua!

With quick, swift movements, the brush slashed forth, whipping a trail of violet ink across the clean page. The young girl adjusted the brush’s direction with a twirl of her wrist, bringing forth the hairs into a returning sweep.

“That’s not so bad.”

Xilong commented from the side as it glanced at the character gouged onto the page. The scarlet dragon traced the character with one of its claws, ultimately nodding its head in approval.

“You’ve managed to capture the primary concept of the technique, though you lost hold of the secondary character [Follow]. It’s rather splendid for someone learning <Hemorrhage> on their first day.”

An Fei placed down the brush with trembling fingers, releasing a loud sigh of relief and exhaustion.

The young girl grabbed the completed sheet and placed it to the side, at the top of a pile of papers that was as tall as her drawing table.

“I’ve been writing all day. I want to take a break.”

“En. You’ve done well – we can work on this when you come back.”

“I’m taking a bath – don’t follow me in.”

An Fei muttered with a blank expression as she retreated into the Sanctum, leaving the heavenly dragon on its own to stare at the diminishing sunlight in the sky. For a brief moment, Xilong found itself at a loss of words.

Why would it willingly stare at a human girl taking a bath…

…mm, a bath of hot water after a day of hard work was rather relaxing and soothing on the nerves!

The scarlet dragon sighed as it felt the warmth of hot water brushing against the base of its scales. As An Fei sank herself into the crystalline tub illuminated in a dazzling array of golden color, she didn’t realize that the massive scar stretching across her body was glowing with a pale radiance…

The change of the month brought forth changes in the young girl’s body. While she still spent her days in the inn, An Fei could distinctly feel the delicate transformations imposed on her body.

“Are you sure this is entirely possible?”

She had continually practiced <Hemorrhaging> until she received a commendable evaluation by the strict teacher that was the scarlet dragon.

Afterwards, she would have studied <Calligraphy> until she grasped its Construct, but there were a few complications…

…before she could learn anything, she had to settle the troubling matter of the massive consumption of spiritual essence by the martial arts technique…

“Of course, this is possible. Rather, this is the only way out if you wish to be able to utilize all of the Sanctuary’s techniques while in the mortal world.”

Due to her condition as a mortal human living within an Immortal Sanctuary, An Fei could not directly absorb and assimilate the divine essence of the Sanctum.

Instead, the will of the Realm had to be converted into its lower strains of spiritual essence, before the young girl could absorb it into her body.

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“…so you’re saying that I don’t have enough capacity within myself to support the consumption of either <Heavenly Talisman> or <Calligraphy>?”

An Fei blinked as she stared at the ceiling of the expansive Sanctum.

Her body sprawled on the crystalline floor, the young girl yawned as she awaited for the heavenly dragon’s brooding to end.

“Your capacity is theoretically sufficient for the <Heavenly Talisman> and <Calligraphy>,” Xilong begrudgingly conceded to the young girl.

“But those are both techniques that were designed to be utilized with divine essence, which can infinitely propagate on its own. Do you really think that a derived medium such as spiritual essence, that contains the fatal flaw in which the practitioner must provide all of the necessary definitions, can operate as a suitable substitute?”

“Er…”

“Let me ask you this; just what were you thinking when you opted to practice both the <Heavenly Talisman> and <Calligraphy> at the same time? Are you simply looking to die?”

“Er…”

…because the descriptions seemed impressive…?

An Fei’s expression quailed as a dragon’s prolonged sigh echoed throughout the Sanctum. The young girl scrambled to her feet in a grave panic, and dashed towards her right, but was too late –

Pa!

“Didn’t you say that someone else was operating that fan!?”

The pale shriek of a young girl echoed through the crystalline walls, ceiling, and floor, causing a cacophony of golden light to bathe the throne hall in response to the heavenly dragon’s exasperation.

Xilong’s expression slightly faltered as it witnessed a plume of divine essence rear its head from An Fei’s back to glare into its eyes, but steeled its resolve in a matter of seconds.

“The other day was a different person! However, I never said that I couldn’t use this fan!”

With a flick of its claw, a certain plain fan swung itself through the air, delivering a mighty strike to An Fei’s bottom with its jade ornaments.

Pa!

The young girl’s expression immediately soured as she rubbed at her sore buttocks, and directed a bitter glare in the general direction of the heavenly dragon. The heavenly dragon stared back with feigned innocence, completely ignoring that it was invisible to An Fei’s perception.

“What are you looking at me for? That was for covering my body in such disgusting, lukewarm tea!”

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“…didn’t you just say that someone else used the fan last time?” An Fei bitterly scowled.

“Did you – urgh – have to aim for the same spot!?”

The heavenly dragon ignored the young girl’s embittered glance, and instead waved its claws in a provocative manner.

The jade clasps on the fan sprung apart to reveal the leaves of the fan of life and death, and a bold character in white ink glanced directly at An Fei’s paling visage.

“I truly wish you had some more time to gradually increase your understanding of the Constructs for both martial arts techniques. However, since that seriously can’t be the case, we’ll have to adopt a more forceful approach!”

Her heart leaping to her throat, An Fei immediately started running as fast as she could. Just seconds later, the snapping jaws of a pair of jade clasps started to hound after the young girl.

- my thoughts:
Oh, what a petty dragon...
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