Chapter 172: The Spy
Walking towards Sha Yun, Hui Yue did not even look back once. He was already quite certain about the expression which would be seen on the older man’s face.
Meeting up with Sha Yun, the snake-woman instantly hooked her arms around the young white-haired man’s and started dragging him towards the courtyard’s gate.
Moving out of the gate, the two guards instantly saluted towards the two guests and Hui Yue, being the person he was, repaid the respect by saluting back at the two men.
As soon as he was done, Sha Yun dragged him with her through the beautiful park down towards one of the canals where they boarded a small boat which took them through the city.
Seated in the boat, Hui Yue took the time to look around and his eyes were filled with astonishment and approval as he saw the many beautiful townhouses. Unlike all the other cities he had seen so far no one within this city seemed to be poor, begging, or starving.
Hui Yue was not dumb. He knew that it was impossible that there were no poor people within the city, and he believed that the poor were banished from the roads, making it even harder for them to beg for food.
Sha Yun was very direct with the way she was taking. She refused to give up just because Hui Yue had shown some attention to Wang Ju Long and as soon they left the boat Hui Yue was dragged through one street after another on their way towards the largest marketplace in the city.
Being out with Sha Yun was like going out with girls in his previous life. They would look at anything from clothing to jewelry. Unlike in the other world though they would also look at weaponry, medicinal pills, and armors. After looking at items they purchased some snacks and spent the majority of the day walking around looking at one stall after another.
By the time it was evening, Sha Yun had been gifted a set of bracelets by Hui Yue. Now the two friends were walking back towards the courtyard where everyone was waiting for them.
Seeing the snake-woman so happy, Hui Yue too could not help but feel happy. Sha Yun was one of his dearest friends. She was the one whom he could trust unconditionally and she was always there for him. The feelings Hui Yue felt were definitely those of gratitude and happiness.
However, another emotion had been stirring within his heart lately, an emotion which, once again today, had surfaced as he saw a pearl white hairpin. Before realized it, Hui Yue bought the hairpin and his heart started racing as he thought about how beautiful it would be, if the hairpin was in Wang Ju Long’s hair.
Even now, he was excited to see her face when he handed it to her the next time they were alone together.
Sha Yun’s face was all smiles, however, she noticed that the young man by her side was deep in thought, a sad expression flickered on her face as she too remembered the hairpin which he purchased with an excited expression on his face.
Sha Yun knew who Hui Yue was thinking about while purchasing the item and that knowledge had hurt her heart deeply despite him buying her a set of bracelets for her.
The sadness on the snake-woman’s face quickly changed from sadness to determination and from determination to a happy smile once more. Her mind steeled against the sadness. She knew from the very start that she would probably not win Hui Yue’s love, but she still kept hoping day in and day out.
At the start it was unknown whether or not her wishful thinking would come true or not, but the older she had became the more she felt that she was only being treated like a friend. Her only happiness was that Wang Ju Long was treated the same as her. Unfortunately recently that seemed to have changed.
Hui Yue would look at the black-haired woman, his eyes dreamy with a small playful smile on his lips which Sha Yun never saw him use for anything else other than when he looked at her.
He laughed every time she was embarrassed, and he would go out of his way to embarrass her. Something he never used to do before.
It was not just small things like these, it was also the fact that he would often would become absent minded when looking at her. All these things were visible to Sha Yun as she spent her time by his side. These facts caused great sadness for the snake-woman, who, even though Hui Yue seemed to be looking at another girl, refused to give up.
Walking back to the courtyard they talked about training. Hui Yue was uncertain whether or not he would be able to make another breakthrough in a year, but like always Sha Yun supported him. She was a magical beast and as magical beasts cultivated very similar to humans, the snake-woman too sighed deeply as she wondered if she would reach the Grandmaster rank anytime soon.
As a magical beast her merging with the elements was very different from humans. If she was to increase her rank to Grandmaster she would be capable of merging further with the elements than she could now. This would boost her strength by a noticeable amount, and although she might not be capable of defeating Hui Yue, she would definitely be capable of drawing out the battle considerably.
Returning to the courtyard, Hui Yue noticed that new guards were standing guard outside the gate, but as soon as they saw the two approaching they respectfully bowed before opening the gate.
Having spent most of his day outside, Hui Yue went straight to the training house where he sat down and started to cultivate. He knew that it was likely impossible for him to reach the Duke rank in the time given, but as long as even a percent of success remained, the young man would do everything in his ability to achieve it.
As he entered the training house he was shocked to see that Wang Ju Long was already seated inside, along with Deng Wu. Both of them were in deep meditation and the dense air was filled with the essence of the heavens and the earth which was constantly roiling around, being inhaled and exhaled by the two cultivators as they absorbed it to their hearts content.
Seeing that Wang Ju Long was here, Hui Yue quietly moved closer to her and placed her present in front of her. A gentle smile appeared on his face as he looked at the beautiful features which were calm and serene as she was focused on cultivating.
Hui Yue pulled back ever so slowly because he did not wish to disturb her cultivation. He slowly moved away and found a place within the room where he sat down and started breathing steadily. He closed his eyes and increased the activity of his cultivation techniques.
Having followed Hui Yue into the room, hurt was visible in Sha Yun’s eyes, however, she quickly choked back all the negative emotions and moved next to her white-haired friend, almost arm in arm as the two of them cultivated together.
Hui Yue was not so blind as to not notice that Sha Yun had feelings for him, but he was very blunt with her back in Riluo City, telling her straight out that it was not mutual.
Knowing all of this, Sha Yun still stayed by his side and she still hoped that one day the young man would turn towards. Would look at her. Unfortunately, before that happened, Sha Yun found that Hui Yue now cared about another woman instead of her.
Although the snake-woman was grumbling about her emotions, it all quickly vanished as she entered meditation. The only thing present in her mind afterwards was the feeling of being one with the world. Absorbing the essence of the heavens and the earth, as it rushed through her body before it entered her beast core where it swirled around, turning into a mist energy. This was the kind of energy which magical beasts used when activating their abilities.
As the four of them were seated in the room together time slowly passed by and the sun which was hanging in the sky changed to a moon, cascading gentle light down onto the beautiful white courtyard.
In the gentle moonlight that shone through the windows the four youngsters were still focused completely on meditation, the longest meditation session these three Wang Ju Long, Sha Yun and Deng Wu had ever had. Only Hui Yue had meditated longer than this before.
Suddenly, the moonlight which was shining in through the window was blocked by a person. Had the youngsters not been completely focused on their cultivation they would have noticed Xu Piao standing there with a complicated expression on his face, an expression showing some sort of hesitation and regret.
Sighing deeply, Xu Piao turned around and slowly made his way out of the courtyard. He had a small memory stone within his hands and he made his way towards the main office of the rentals mansions with steady steps.
Stepping into the main office, Xu Piao moved straight to the counter where he waited for a person to come and assist him. Within this cave, no matter what time of day the counter was always open, ready to accommodate anyone who showed up.
Seeing Xu Piao, a person who had previously flashed a B rank emblem caused the manager to act quickly as he rushed towards the man, his hands clasped together while bowing deeply.
“What can I do for you my good sir?” He asked with a sleazy smile, his hands no longer cupped together, instead, they were now rubbing each other. His expression showed a hint of greed which in no way passed by Xu Piao’s keen notice but there was nothing he could do about it, and he lifted the memory stone from within his hands.
“I need to send a memory stone to the Dragon Corps’ main office within the Demon Dwelling Cave.” He said with a somber voice, his eyes darker than usual and his entire demeanor anything but cheerful. Each time he sent information to Zhou Long, the harder it became.
When Xu Piao first encountered Hui Yue and his friends, the Guild Master had been very interested in them, even more so when he heard that they came from the surface world. He expected that he could use his connection with these young cultivators to leave the caves and get to see the world Hui Yue spoke about.
Seeing the attention Zhou Long put on Hui Yue, Xu Piao was quickly aware that the Dragon Corps leader knew the fact that the white-haired boy came from another world, and he let it slip that he too knew about his past.
Hearing this, Zhou Long instantly hired the Guild Master to take on the task of reporting important information to him. To relay how their travels went and ensure that no danger came to Hui Yue. On the other hand, he was not to protect any of the other youngsters. It would be ideal if only the white-haired young man was alive by the time they reached the capital.
Zhou Long had even gone as far as to inform Xu Piao that he would send mercenaries to assassinate the youngsters during their trip, warning him so that they could keep Hui Yue alive.