For three days straight, Lei Wujie practiced the art of drawing the sword.
At dawn everyday, Li Hanyi would walk out of his straw hut and execute a single move directed at Lei Wujie. Yet regardless of how fearsome that strike was, he was never able to pull out his sword. After several repetitions of this every morning, Li Hanyi no longer went easy on Lei Wujie, leaving the teen riddled with cuts and stabs over time..
After one attack, Li Hanyi would turn around and leave. Sometimes, he would walk back into his straw hut without leaving it the entire day and at times, he would enter deep into the mountains in order to train in the way of the sword. The only thing Lei Wujie could do everyday was to think about how he could draw his sword while taking care of Li Hanyi’s daily needs. Truth be told, he didn’t have to provide any meals for his teacher. In the past, the disciples below would send up meals to them. However, after Lei Wujie took a bite of the food they sent, he chased them all away. From then on, he prepared a stove of his own and started to cook.
There were countless wild herbs and vegetation on the nineteen peaks of Mount Cangshan, not to mention countless birds and animals as well. It so happened that since young, Lei Wuji loved cooking as much as he did martial arts, which was why he volunteered to cook. To which Li Hanyi neither rejected his offer nor praised him for it. However, it had to be said that Li Hanyi still hadn’t taught him a single move.
At dawn of the fourth morning, Lei Wujie was in the midst of preparing breakfast when Li Hanyi walked out of the straw hut.
Lei Wujie hurriedly greeted his teacher. “Good morning teacher.”
Rubbing his nose, there was a rare hint of levity in his voice as said, “If only you were half as accomplished in the way of the sword as you were in cooking.”
Lei Wujie was instantly pleased at this turn of events. “Teacher, you seem to be in a good mood today.”
“You may leave the mountain.” Li Hanyi said as he waved his sleeves.
Lei Wujie was stunned and the ladle in his hand fell to the ground. “Teacher… teacher, even though I’m stupid, you don’t have to chase me away, right?”
As he shook his head, Li Hanyi explained, “I’m not chasing you away. I will begin a seclusion of three days soon. Within those three days, I do not want anyone entering the mountain.”
In an instant, Lei Wujie’s sorrow turned into joy and he nodded his head furiously. “There’s no rush then! I’ll prepare breakfast for teacher before leaving,”
Li Hanyi didn’t say a word and simply turned his head away. With a leap, he jumped to the top of the straw hut and sat down. As he directed his gaze towards the north, a sigh escaped his lips, “So much resemblance…” Reaching out with his hand, he caught a leaf fluttering in the air and placed on his lips. As he blew on the edge of the leaf, a melancholic tune filled the air that left a sense of regret hanging around. It was a familiar tune for Lei Wujie. Then, like a bolt out of the blue, it struck him. That was the same tune which Xiao Se was playing when he sat on top of the roof of the bar. Turning his head to look at Li Hanyi’s back, he suddenly felt a sense of familiarity.
Li Hanyi slowly lowered his hand and recited, “Courtyard in the springtime, flowers dancing under the moonlight. Turning into the side corridor, the fragrance of the plum blossoms was intoxicating. With soft clouds and a thin layer of mist, the youths enjoyed themselves. Unlike the autumn moon, the desolation of departure remained.”
“Teacher.” Lei Wujie called out.
“We haven’t completed today’s sword practise yet, have we?” Li Hanyi’s body suddenly spun around.
“Huh?” Lei Wujie was stunned.
With a light wave of his right hand, the leaf in his hand shot out towards Lei Wujie with a blistering speed as it rode on a strong gale.
Using a leaf to pierce a petal, – the epitome of skill!
Lei Wujie swiftly reached for Rainfall which laid beside him and tugged at the handle of the sword -it refused to budge in the slightest. Seeing as the flying leaf was right before him, Lei Wujie could only beat a hasty retreat. Despite that, the speed of the leaf didn’t reduce at all and, after retreating four steps, Lei Wujie felt the supreme sword qi hidden within charge right at him. Without wasting another second, he instinctively turned around and fled down the mountain.
“See you in three days, Teacher!” Lei Wujie’s yelled behind him.
Taking off the gray veil which covered his face, Li Hanyi suddenly laughed.
Lei Wujie ran away like a madman and, in his furious dash down the mountain, soon reached the stony streets of Snow Moon City. He had been on Mount Cangshan for many days and, to be really honest, he was starting to miss his two brothers, Xiao Se and Tang Lian. As he looked about for them, he soon stumbled upon a familiar face.
With a pale white face, slender frame and sporting a white cloak with the ‘gamble (赌)’ word on it, the person he saw was that very same floor guardian of the thirteenth floor, Luo Mingxuan. There was a lady standing beside him who had a pretty and somewhat dashing look to her. At first glance, she didn’t seem any older than her early-twenties. Even so, Lei Wujie knew that she was the world famous Immortal Maiden Luoxia, Yin Luoxia, and was also Luo Mingxuan’s teacher. That was obvious from the similar white cloak she, albeit with a much larger ‘gamble(赌)’ written on it.
“Lei Wujie?” Luo Mingxuan flashed him a mischievous grin. “The same Lei Wujie who owes me eight hundred taels?”
“That’s…” Lei Wujie scratched his head and said.
“You dare to ask for money even after losing? Don’t embarrass me.” Yin Luoxia took a step forward and interrupted him. Even though she was berating him, her voice was gentle and melodious. She smiled as she addressed Lei Wujie, “So you’re Lei Wujie. My name is Yin Luoxia.”
“Immortal Maiden Luoxia, I’ve long heard of your illustrious name!” Lei Wujie was slightly startled by her attention, though in a pleasant way. He quickly cupped his fist to pay respects.
Yin Luoxia giggled and asked, “So what are you doing away from the mountain today? Where is your teacher?”
“My teacher is entering seclusion for several days and made me wait at the bottom of the mountain so I won’t bother him.”
Yin Luoxia thoughtfully nodded her head and said in a low voice, “Seclusion? Could it be that his old friend is here again?”
Lei Wujie wasn’t able to catch all of that and he quickly inquired, “What did Immortal Maiden just say?”
Returning to her senses, Yin Luoxia laughed and shook her head. “Nothing. Where are you heading to now?”
With a slight frown on his face, Lei Wujie replied, “I’m looking for a friend of mine. He’s the person who came into the city with me.”
“Xiao Se?” Luo Mingxuan chuckled.
“Brother Luo, you know Xiao Se as well?” Lei Wujie was pleasantly surprised by that.
“Not just me.” Raising his head to look into the distance, Luo Mingxuan continued, “By now, everyone in Snow Moon City knows Xiao Se. Teacher, make a guess, how long till he reaches our Luoxia Hall? I’ll bet another 15 minutes.”
The moment Yin Luoxia heard the word ‘bet’, her eyes lit up. “I’ll bet now.”
The instant the words left her lips, a figure suddenly appeared on the roof of the main hall and charged towards their current location. He was wearing a blue robe and had a handsome face -it was Xiao Se!
“He’s getting faster by the day.” Luo Mingxuan exclaimed.
“Xiao Se!” Lei Wujie quickly yelled.
Hearing that yell, Xiao Se was stunned for a second and his steps faltered. An instant later, a metallic black came rushing from behind. He quickly tilted his body to dodge, but the stab still left a huge hole in his sleeves, to which he angrily said, “Do you know what you just destroyed? That was made from Delicate Misty Cotton! It’s a thousand taels for a roll!”
“Who cares what it is?!” Clearly not bothered by that fact, the girl smashed down with her spear once again.
After narrowly dodging the spear, he increased his speed and pressed forward.
“The Cloudsteps really is the number one movement skill in the world. This kid doesn’t possess the slightest bit of internal force, yet he is able to move as quickly as a top expert using a movement skill.” Yin Luoxia exclaimed in admiration as she looked at Xiao Se’s figure weaving through the air.
As he sped away, Xiao Se yelled, “Lei Wujie!”
“Coming!” Lei Wujie tacitly took a step forward and sent a fist into the sky.
It was his signature martial art, the Lei Clan’s Unseen Fist -before the fist arrived, the qi would strike first.
Lei Wujie didn’t have any impression of Sikong Qianluo at all as she had left her post unguarded on the day he challenged her floor. Even though she had received the news of Lei Wujie’s arrival and rushed back into the city, she was obstructed by Xiao Se. They ended up bumping into each other at the end but neither of them got properly acquainted with each other because of the chaotic scene then. Yet, while Lei Wujie might not know her name, Sikong Qianluo definitely did.
Her spear slightly faltered and she stopped moving forward. Standing atop the roof, she turned her gaze towards Lei Wujie and proclaimed loftily, “Fine, I’ll sort the both of you out while I’m at it.”
“That day when Lei Wujie challenged the Tower of Ascension, the second citymaster sent him flying with a single move. On the fifteenth floor, Lei Yunhe called forth the Nine Heavens Thunder and, if not for him showing mercy, Lei Wujie would already be a dead man. On the fourteenth floor, Senior Brother went easy on him. In the end, it could be said that he only passed the thirteenth floor with his own abilities. If he were to really meet the guardian on the fourteenth floor, would he still win?” Luo Mingxuan turned his head to ask his teacher.
The immortal-like Yin Luoxia’s eyebrows jumped and she lightly shook the dice in her hand, “How about we have a bet then?”
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