Chapter 61 – Bloodmist Valley
After Ye Wei returned with a glass of water, the pair didn’t say a word as they both preferred the silence. He stayed by the bedside to guard Lin Zi Yan while she recovered.
Although Zi Yan was touched by his kindness, she treated Ye Wei coldly. Contrary to her heart, she didn’t want him to get too close and get hurt.
Time flew and by the time Zi Yan was almost in her best condition, two more days had passed. Her cultivation hit a new high as her body recovered.
When Lin Zi Yan was strong enough to get out of bed by herself, Ye Wei decided it was time for him to leave: “Zi Yan, I am off!”
While Ye Wei was walking away, Zi Yan did not take her eyes off his back. She wanted to talk to him, but when she opened her lips nothing would come out.
‘Why was I born into this family? Why can’t I decide anything by myself? I just want to have a simple life! Ye Wei, I can’t be with you but I know you will do well for yourself. I hope I can see that day with my own eyes before I have to leave the city…’
Her heartache choked her as she cried quietly.
Zi Yan was not the only one feeling uneasy, Ye Wei was hurt but he believed he had the capability to improve and didn’t let the devastation stay in his system. Ignoring the attention he got from his fellow students on the path to the dorms, he ran back to his place while planning how to fulfil his dreams. His dreams about becoming a Runemaster, about making his family thrive, and his dreams about Zi Yan.
He noticed that the sun was shining through the gap between a few large rainclouds as he looked up to the sky now and then, appreciating the spectacular scenery as his mind wandered. Ye Wei immediately starting cultivating again once he arrived back at his house.
While Ye Wei was training behind closed doors, a few things happened inside and outside the academy.
The news of his status spread to all the staff and student. The story of a one star Student becoming Master YI’s apprentice was an inspiring one, and the atmosphere at South Star Academy had never been this positive. Some of the students who were about to give up were reinvigorated, and the students who were already doing well were now doubling their efforts.
Xiao Qi did not have the best time because it was a commonly known fact that he did not get along with Ye Wei. So after the news broke, everyone started to alienate him. Some kids from martial families even started to pick fights with him hoping Ye Wei would hear about it. Xiao Qi’s social life had never been this bad. He was very frustrated as he was not at all used to being on the receiving end of bullying or being left alone.
With Du Ming Ze when the teachers found out what he did to Ye Wei’s old room they notified his family about his misconduct. When the Du family learned about it, they were petrified. They knew what it meant to be on the wrong side of Master Yi, and the Ye family. The Du family took Du Ming Ze out of South Star Academy and rumour had it that they physically punished him so hard that he had to rest in bed for weeks.
While people expected Master Mu to speak to Master Yi to solve some of their disagreements, he never really stood up for the Du family, nor did he show himself in public after the duel. That was when Green Moon City realized that although both of them were Runemasters, Master Yi and Master Mu were on completely different levels.
All this was told to Ye Wei by Cao Ning; he remained close with Ye Wei even after the move. He visited Ye Wei a few times with gossip and supplies, this let Ye Wei focus solely on his training. Though, because of this Cao Ning’s friendship with Ye Wei was spotted by people. The martial families treated him as Ye Wei’s sidekick, a close associate. They would give Cao Ning pills and other gifts now and then which improved his cultivation speed.
‘I wonder what Master Yi is up to at the moment.’ Ye Wei thought as he was taking a little break from training. A few days had passed since he returned from Lin Zi Yan’s.
There was a knocking sound on the door and Ye Wei was surprised to see who came to his house.
“Zi Yan…?!” Ye Wei blushed when he saw the face of the girl he had been thinking about the past few days.
“Hey, you look surprised! Am I not welcome here?” Lin Zi Yan was wearing a cheeky smile. It seemed like she had put the embarrassing incident behind her.
“Of course you are welcome! I was just expecting to see Cao Ning’s silly face.” Ye Wei shook his head and broke into a smile.
Lin Zi Yan could see from his darkened eyes that he was tired. She was happy to be able to refresh him with great news, “Little Wei, I have received information regarding Welkin Leaves!”
“Really!? Where!?” The news widened Ye Wei’s tired eyes, and he looked more energized than he had for days.
“Bloodmist Valley!” Lin Zi Yan felt Ye Wei’s enthusiasm and surprise and therefore answered immediately.
“Blood what?” Ye Wei frowned as the name did not ring any bells.
“It is to the north of Frozen Sun City, deep inside the Red Wolf Mountains.” Lin Zi Yan explained, “About half a month ago, the Lee family of Frozen Sun City sent their youngsters to train in the mountains, and when they went past Bloodmist Valley they found some Welkin Leaves trimmings.”
“And what happened to them?” Ye Wei couldn’t wait for Lin Zi Yan to finish.
“The Lee family sold them to an anonymous Runemaster for one point eight million silver. The transaction was kept on the down low, and that’s all the information my source could find unfortunately.” Lin Zi Yan frowned and said in a slightly regretful tone.
“Okay.” Ye Wei digested what he heard then nodded. ‘If he bought it for that price, I don’t think he would resell it for a profit. Needless to say the Runemaster would be nowhere to be found anyway…’
“I will go to Bloodmist Valley!” Ye Wei took a deep breath and said to Lin Zi Yan, his determination was audible.
Although Ye Wei had no idea where it was, he was ready to go through the gates of hell for his cousin whom he owed his life to without a word of complaint.
“I have a beast carriage ready for us.” Ye Wei’s hasty decision was all within Lin Zi Yan’s calculation. Proud of her prediction and entertained by Ye Wei’s hotheadedness, she chuckled.
“Zi Yan… You can’t go!” Ye Wei frowned, he did not want to rely on Zi Yan when it came to family business. He was too prideful and felt that he owed her enough already.
“If I don’t tag along, it will take you a very long time to locate Bloodmist Valley!” Lin Zi Yan smiled at Ye Wei with a light blush. “Just let me help you as kind of a repayment!”
Ye Wei didn’t understand she seemed so happy. A few days ago the tension between them was unbearable. He nodded and said, “You’re right, I appreciate your help.”
“Let’s get ready!” Lin Zi Yan said lightheartedly as she proceeded to help Ye Wei pack then led him out of the house.
A horned elephant carriage was waiting outside, and they quickly boarded and headed off.
Frozen Sun City was a city located to the west of Green Moon City. It was way larger and more populated than Ye Wei’s hometown. When the carriage drove past the busy streets of the big city, Ye Wei was amused by the view and the people.
They went off road at the north end of the city into the wilderness and passed through the mountains. As they got closer to their destination the red mist was thickening. The mist was constantly changing shape from one second to the next and it smelled a little like blood.
‘We will be there soon…’ Lin Zi Yan slowed the beast down before they were spotted by other travellers as she did not wish to draw too much attention.
After arriving, they got off the carriage and walked towards Bloodmist Valley. Ye Wei could hear chattering noises in front of him, and he quietly walked ahead of Lin Zi Yan. He spotted a large group of tents on the flat ground far ahead. ‘Why are all these people here?’
Lin Zi Yan could see Ye Wei was confused, “Bloodmist Valley is a very strange place. According to legends, it was the training ground for a very strong group of cultivators. They left a lot of treasures in there and they made the mist with a stance to keep people out of this place. The stronger one is, the more one will be hurt by the red mist. It is life-threatening for cultivators above Warrior level, and I’ve heard tales of condensed prime Warriors getting paralyzed by the mist long time ago when they discovered the place.” She told Ye Wei as she was looking at an old sheepskin map in her hand.
“See the thick mist over there? It gets thinner every few days, sometimes weeks, and when it does we will enter, but we will have to watch for the signs. When the mist starts thickening again, we will get out. People have found great treasures in there, but not all of them found their way back out of the thick mist…” Lin Zi Yan said as the two walked towards the edge of the valley. There were more than a hundred groups of people gathered close by where the thick mist was. The pair decided to wait near the others so they too could enter as soon as the mist dispersed.
Although they tried to keep a low profile, the beauty of Lin Zi Yan had the opposite effect. The cultivators couldn’t help but talk about the elegant girl who had just arrived. How she was dressed like someone important, and how lucky Ye Wei was to have her company.
“That’s a lot of people. They look like they know the valley well so they must be here for the treasures.” Ye Wei shared his concern with Lin Zi Yan, “We will have to act quickly and seize the chance before the herb is spotted by anyone else. I don’t want to miss this chance to save Cousin Zhong.” He clenched his fist with determination and took a couple of deep breaths, then went back to observing the ever changing mist.