Chapter 200 - Gone With The Wind!
Edited by RED
Xu Qi descended from the skies above the Woodblue Village, landing by the village entrance. He retracted his Five Elements Wings and quickly formed a seal with his hand. A golden figure slowly appeared before him.
“Be careful,” Xu Qi reminded the golden figure, and proceeded to enter the village.
This golden figure was, of course, Xu Xiaomei. She quickened her steps a little, overtaking Xu Qi and leading the way.
Looking at Woodblue Village, Xu Qi thought back to the three years he spent in this village he had left not too long ago. Those three years were the most peaceful and comfortable years he had lived ever since he transcended into this world. However, the familiar faces he was used to seeing standing outside these houses were no longer around.
While Xu Qi was walking towards his and Lan Shu’er’s house with his mind full of sentimental thoughts, Xu Xiaomei suddenly extended her arm and stopped in place.
Xu Qi saw that Xu Xiaomei was pointing toward his courtyard, and immediately understood that something was up.
The two of them flew up and landed right in the courtyard. Someone else was standing in front of the doors, facing the house. Their entire body was covered in a loose, rough cloth, which left him unable to ascertain their appearance or figure.
“Who are you?! Why did you trespass my house!?” Xu Qi demanded after seeing this figure. His body was slightly trembling, as his rainbow energy gradually shone around him, ready to take action at anytime.
“Is that you, Lan Jiu?” a slightly hoarse voice rang out.
Xu Qi was astounded at hearing this voice. He raised his trembling arm, pointing at the figure and asked, “Is that you, granny?!”
The figure standing before the door slowly turned around, and removed the cloth covering her body. Upon seeing the person’s face, Xu Qi yelled out sternly, “Who exactly are you?!”
This person was actually a beautiful middle-aged woman. There were some white hairs by her temple, but her beauty overshadowed them. Her complexion was incredibly haggard, but one could imagine that she was definitely an unparalleled beauty in her younger days. Xu Qi felt her voice sounded similar to granny’s, but he was sure that she wasn’t someone from Woodblue Village. However, why would she know Xu Qi’s name in the village?
“Can you not even recognize my voice? Then have you forgotten about me asking you to look for my daughter? Or perhaps, how many people would know about me saving you with the Seven Stars Summoning?” the beautiful madam sighed and slowly replied.
“Granny!? Is that really you?! Why would you..?” Xu Qi exclaimed in shock.
“So what if my appearance is different? The person underneath is still the same. This is my true appearance, Lan Jiu. You’ve returned too late!” the beautiful madam continued.
Xu Qi finally confirmed to himself that this woman before him was the granny who saved his life. Her name was Di Luoyu!
Xu Qi quickly walked up to Di Luoyu and asked anxiously, “Granny! What exactly happened?! What happened to the village!? And where is Shu’er and our daughter?!”
Di Luoyu didn’t give Xu Qi a response immediately. She glanced over to Xu Xiaomei and nodded at her in acknowledgment, then pointed at the house and said, “A seal was placed on your house by someone, and that person’s strength is above mine. I can’t undo it.”
“Let me,” Xu Xiaomei said as she approached the house. Golden energy shone in her hand and she shot it towards the door. A ripple spread immediately after their contact, and a golden-colored energy wall appeared around the entire house, slowly fading away.
“This seal was placed by you?” Di Luoyu asked in disbelief at seeing this.
Xu Xiaomei nodded and said, “It was me. I came to this village a couple of days ago and discovered the corpses in the courtyard. I moved them into the house and placed a seal on them using a secret art, preventing them from rotting. After which, I placed another seal around the house.”
“Then did you go to my place while you were here?!” Di Luoyu inquired further.
“Yes, I did,” Xu Xiaomei answered.
Di Luoyu’s face turned into one of relief and nodded, saying, “So the expert who came that night was you. I was injured then and concealed my aura, hiding in the secret room of my house.”
While the two were conversing, Xu Qi slowly walked to the house with heavy steps and gently pushed the door open.
In the house, many corpses were laying side by side on the floor, each of them enveloped by a layer of golden light. Upon seeing Lan Daniu’s corpse, Xu Qi’s face turned ashen.
He looked at each of those familiar faces, and slowly came to Lan Daniu’s corpse. There were three bloody holes in Lan Daniu’s chest. Every one of them were fatal wounds, and there were also blood marks on his kneecaps and arms. He was most likely tortured before his death.
Xu Qi was no stranger to seeing corpses. However, the sight of Lan Daniu left him crying silently as he knelt on the ground weakly, saying, “I’m back, Brother Daniu! Lan Jiu is back!”
“Ai, Daniu died a tragic death. He was no cultivator, yet he stubbornly protected Shu’er and your daughter. In the end, that person smashed his kneecaps and broke his arms,” Di Luoyu said softly.
“Granny, if you witnessed all this, why didn’t you save them!? Why!?” Xu Qi turned to Di Luoyu abruptly and screamed.
“Lan Jiu, I know you’d blame me for this, but look,” Di Luoyu said as she shifted her clothes slightly, revealing her right shoulder. It was bandaged with a white cloth, with some eye-catching blood stains.
“Ah? You’re injured, granny! What exactly happened!? Who killed them?! And where is Shu’er and Lan Xin!?” Xu Qi asked anxiously at the sight of her injuries.
“Lan Jiu, I hope you’ll remain calm after listening to what I’m about to say. On a morning a few days prior, a kind-looking elder suddenly came to our village. He claimed to be a traveler and wished to ask for some food from us. Thus, I invited him to my house and prepared a meal for him. He left my place after he finished the meal, but who would’ve thought…” Di Luoyu’s voice trailed off as she spoke. She bit on her lips, not daring to continue the story.
“But who would’ve thought that after he left, I saw many villagers running towards Shu’er’s house, saying that someone was bullying her. I hurried over, too, and found out that the elder from before claimed to be here on Xu Qi’s instructions to bring her to him. Seeing as he was someone with unknown origins, I quickly shielded Shu’er behind me. Alas, this elder was actually a superb cultivation expert, and I was wounded by him in just one move. Then, he placed a seal on me, restricting my movements. He said that he was unwilling to claim my life because of my kindness to him,” Di Luoyu continued.
“What happened after that?” Xu Qi asked coldly.
“After that, Daniu arrived and guarded Shu’er behind him stubbornly. However, he was only a commoner, and could never possibly oppose that elder. I could do nothing but to watch as Daniu was tortured to death by him. After killing Daniu, that elder’s temperament took an abrupt turn and started massacring the people around. He then struck Shu’er and Lan Xin unconscious and left the courtyard. After some time, he returned here and brought them away,” Di Luoyu said.
“He probably went to kill everyone else in the village during his short absence, didn’t he?” Xu Qi asked coldly.
Di Luoyu nodded as tears fell from her eyes. She said softly, “Right, he killed every villager in the short time he left your place, then returned to bring the two away. But before he left, that elder told me to pass on a message to you.”
“Pass on a message to me?! What did he say?” Xu Qi hurriedly asked .
“I don’t understand what he meant, but what his original message was: Tell Xu Qi to come to me with the Azure Dragon, White Tiger, Vermillion Bird, and Black Tortoise when his hair is fully grown1. But tell him not to come find me before gathering those four; he won’t be a match for me. Tell him to rest assured that I will take good care of his wife and daughter. I’ll be waiting for him to come find me for revenge. As for my location? I’m among the seven top schools,” Di Luoyu said.
Xu Qi stared wide-eyed at hearing this. Azure Dragon, White Tiger, Vermillion Bird, and Black Tortoise? Shouldn’t I be the only one who knows about the secret of the Four Divine Beasts in this world? How did he find out? And he said to look for him after gathering the four beasts? He’s hiding within the seven schools? Who exactly is this person?!
But, who cares about who he is?! He killed my friends, and abducted my family! Not only that, he killed so many innocent villagers! I will slaughter him!
“Young Master, shouldn’t we first… The secret art I placed on them won’t last for long,” Xu Xiaomei asked, pointing at the corpses.
“Come out,” Xu QI said plainly and picked up Lan Daniu’s corpse, walking outside.
Xu Xiaomei and Di Luoyu exchanged glances and followed behind him.
Xu Qi laid Lan Daniu’s corpse gently on the ground and willed the All-Tempering Flames to appear with a flip of his palm. He took an extended look at the building he spent some significant years living in, and tossed the flames at the roof. In just a moment, the entire house was ablaze.
“Lan Jiu, you…” Di Luoyu wanted to stop Xu Qi, but was at a loss for words.
“The villagers are no longer around. Naturally, the village should be gone with them,” Xu Qi said and picked up Lan Daniu’s corpse. His Five Elements Wings spread behind his back once more, leaving Di Luoyu astonished at the sight of them.
Xu Qi flapped his Five Elements Wings and took flight, flying over the village center. Everywhere he flew past would be turned into a sea of flames. Xu Xiaomei carried Di Luoyu on her back and flew to the village entrance. She knew that Xu Qi must have his reasons for doing this. Di Luoyu, however, had a sorrowful look on her face. After all, this was the place she had spent over a decade in.
Soon, Xu Qi landed by the village entrance with Lan Daniu’s corpse in his arms. The entire Woodblue Village was already engulfed in flames.
Xu Qi’s tears fell uncontrollably as he looked at the ghostly white corpse of Lan Daniu, and let out a sorrowful roar to the skies.
Lan Daniu was his savior, who had carried him back to the village. He was Xu Qi’s best buddy, who saw Xu Qi as a close brother. Now, Lan Daniu even gave up his life in an attempt to keep Xu Qi’s family safe from others. How could Xu Qi not feel bitter? How could he not feel terrible? He was regretting it so much now, regretting not bringing Shu’er and Lan Daniu with him when he left the village. Things would be different if he he had done so. Alas, there were no what-ifs. Lan Daniu was already dead, and Shu’er was taken away. The Woodblue Village was gone, too, and its villagers no longer around.
In the end, Xu Qi buried Lan Daniu’s corpse by the village entrance, and placed three layers of seals on his tomb. Xu Qi went looking for a smooth stone tablet personally and inscribed on it.
“My dear brother Lan Daniu’s tomb. With respect from his brother, Lan Jiu.”
“May you go in peace; a pity only the miserable flowery scene can be seen in the tower under the moonlit sky. You shouldn’t have left; even the partridges are crying over our eternal separation!2 Brother Daniu, may we be blood brothers in our next lives!”
1: When he has grown strong/matured enough.
2: An elegiac couplet. The flowery scene meant that the deceased’s figure will no longer be around/never return.
Cited from here, if you wish to read about it (it’s in Chinese). Thanks to Starve (TL of Records of Human Emperor) for helping with research!