The Villain’s White Lotus Halo - Chapter 41 - Dusk
Chapter 41 – Dusk
Yin Biyue felt the atmosphere change instantly. Each person’s eyes that fell on him had an indescribable, complicated expression. Sheathing his sword, he saw Chen Yi smiling and even cupping his hands in courtesy, “Today’s battle, I accept wholeheartedly.” Yin Biyue felt incredibly lucky and thought: this cheap imitation of a halo couldn’t even draw much aggro. Thus, he returned the gesture and said, “by your concession”. The attendant called out, “This battle is over. Cang Ya, Yin Biyue wins—” The highs and lows of this battle could be deemed brilliant and outstanding, yet without bloodshed or injury. Both sides began with an upright and composed greeting, and they ended in the same manner. Yin Biyue walked off the stage and a hoard of Cang Ya disciples swarmed around him. Their gazes were both joyous and sorrowful, even carrying somewhat of ‘wishing iron would instantly turn into steel’¹ kind of feeling. Their scrutiny made him extremely uncomfortable. In the next second, the crowd parted, and he was met with Luo Mingchuan’s eyes. As always, they were the color of clear and crystalline amber. His eyes carried a trace of concern. He asked in a low tone, “Are you injured?” It was the same as when his first fight ended. In that instant, a sense of comfort washed over Yin Biyue. No matter how this world saw him, Luo Mingchuan’s gaze had never changed. Screw whatever aggro! Shixiong had been under the sun this long, and he was still waiting for me to support him on the way home! ~(≧▽≦)/~ Luo Mingchuan slightly coughed and simply said, “There’s still something else, shidi and I will go first.” Only then did the crowd suddenly show flustered expressions. They already knew the road beneath their feet by heart; after they turned into an alleyway, Yin Biyue supported Luo Mingchuan’s arm. The incomplete intent of the Frigid Water technique still circulated devastatingly around his body, making him unable to resist leaning closer. Yet, suddenly he felt the closeness was inappropriate. Shixiong, who was always proper, might not be very used to it. Just when he was about to put some distance between them, he heard Luo Mingchuan sincerely say, “Thank you, shidi.” No worries ~(≧▽≦)/~
The two had left without hesitation. When everyone at the arena had regained their composure, Yin Biyue and Luo Mingchuan’s backs were so far away that they couldn’t be seen anymore, condensing into a single point under the clear blue sky. Comments and sighs rang out one by one. He Yanyun lamented, “With Yin shixiong like this… good thing Luo shixiong is there to watch over him.” Duan Chongxuan didn’t know what expression he should be making. Regarding his own shixiong’s nature, he understood more deeply than others. “Fortunately, with fourth shixiong’s combat capability and cultivation, he won’t be bullied by other people.” Some people didn’t agree, “Yin shixiong’s cultivation is profound, his combat capability unsurpassed. But in the future, what if somebody with immoral intentions wants to deceive him? For example, acting pitiful to get sympathy? Then what?” “Yin shixiong always wears a cold expression! He appears to be cold-hearted and aloof! This is great!” “Yes! Although he’s easily misunderstood, he can still also frighten the crooks!” The Cang Ya disciples gathered together and expressed heartfelt concern over their own shixiong’s character. In the end, they came to the conclusion that Luo shixiong must look after him well! The entirety of Cang Ya must band together to look after him well too! Chu Huan brought Lian Jian Zong disciples up on the stage and helped Chen Yi down. Chen Yi waved his hand, indicating that there was no need to worry; he indeed did not get injured. Qu Duiyan, who was on the spectator’s stand, also finally relaxed. Up on the spectator’s stage, somebody suddenly called Buddha’s name. The crowd looked over and saw a senior monk of Jie Kong Temple dressed in a grey robe. Buddhist cultivators have always been low-profile, especially those of Jie Kong Temple. Even in busy and chaotic markets, they behaved as if they were in a Buddhist hall. Zi Ming was the shidi of Jie Kong Temple’s First Chair; his position and cultivation were apparent. However, when he doesn’t speak, almost no one would notice him. The sound of his voice was as warm as the spring breeze, as if reciting scriptures, “Amitabha. Great shishu frequently said, our Buddhist sect’s disciples who roam the secular world does not yield in every aspect because of mercy; rather, they need to have a ‘Bodhisattva heart and firm hands.’ I did not grasp this before, but today I finally understand: he was actually describing people like Yin shizhu².” Everyone’s hearts were deeply moved; for a moment, they didn’t know what to say. A Bao Pu Zong’s elder coldly snorted, his expression rancor. In a low voice, he cursed, “What compassion and mercy? It’s simply housewives’ sympathies 3! In the future, he’s unlikely to become capable! The Sword Saint actually has this kind of disciple!” Abruptly, he felt a cold shiver down his spine. He hurriedly turned around and saw the Lian Jian Zong’s elder icily looking at him. He remembered only then the opponent that Yin Biyue showed mercy to was a Lian Jian disciple. Although his voice was low, the words he said a moment ago were difficult to escape the ears of a cultivator a half-step into the Greater Vessel stage. Among the people who watched the battle today, the Lian Jian Zong elder’s cultivation was the highest. That single glance did not leak the tiniest bit of power, yet it was brimming with threat. He could only pale and shut his mouth. The elder of QingLu Sword Sect also spoke up. He mildly said, “The Sword Saint having such an apprentice is a good thing.” When the middle-aged woman’s cold eyes finished terrorizing that Bao Pu Zong figure, she turned to Qu Duiyan; only then did her countenance display some affection. Previously, she had already clearly understood the fight and now lectured, “In order for your shidi to execute that last move ‘Seizing the Moon’, he used up all his strength. The core energy that protected his body had already diminished to nothing. If Yin Biyue’s sword had struck true, he wouldn’t be able to wield a saber for at least a year. Even with your mother’s ‘Gold Wind Jade Dew’, he would still need half a year to recover.” Here, the lecture turned into a warning, “In the future, no matter who you’re fighting with, if it’s not a matter of life and death, the core energy that protects the body must never be dispersed, lest you place yourself in grave danger. As for Yin Biyue that child, he obviously has a cold face yet a warm heart. But he insisted on being stubborn and couldn’t even finish giving someone a favor completely. Do not learn from him later on.” Qu Duiyan soothingly promised just as before, “Auntie’s teachings are right. Yan-er 4 understands now.” The middle-aged woman nodded her head in satisfaction. Still, Qu Duiyan’s heart remembered that cold-faced, warm-hearted youth and couldn’t help smiling. Whether it was having compassion and showing mercy or being ignorant to the ways of the world, she felt that either way was excellent. He was different from the crowd, unique. Regardless of how everyone thought, the Flower Picking Festival’s third round continued on, and this brilliant and outstanding battle had to eventually dissipate like so much smoke. However, there were still discussions in teahouses and restaurants. The first time Yi Hu was unsheathed, and it had the power of ten thousand mountains to destroy Seizing the Moon. It must not be underestimated. People just didn’t know if compared to the Feng Yu Sword, which one was sharper? This question even Yin Biyue himself could not answer. He sat on his futon, using a cloth to wipe his sword. His expression was serious, and his movements were meticulous. In his mind, he minutely recalled the details of that battle. It wasn’t an illusion. When unsheathed, this sword, under Seizing the Moon’s force, was indeed slightly vibrating and faintly humming, as if displeased and furious. But it still did not accept his core energy, silent and stubborn. If the All Saints Era’s first godly weapon ‘Lin Yuan’ still existed, it probably wouldn’t have this much attitude. Thinking this, Yin Biyue was nearly losing it. #Shifu, the way you passed on this sword back then probably had a BUG 5 #I want to have a chat with this sword.
Seven days later, the Flower Picking Festival’s third round finished. Qu Duiyan never showed up afterward in the later fights. Many people sighed over the shocking appearance of a beauty and wondered if they had the fate to see her again in this life. There should have been forty people to advance, but there were several battles where both parties were badly injured, and the winners had also given up the right to go on competing. Therefore, only thirty-six people advanced. Before the fourth round’s draws began, the participating disciples still had three days of rest. QingLu Sword Sect had also dispatched people to do reinforcements and repair work on the arena’s arrays. The number of foreign cultivators in Ye City increased; all were waiting to watch the next round of fighting. The black-armored guards’ daily patrols had greatly intensified, and the city’s wine shops and gambling dens’ businesses were doing even better. Presently, the disciples of various sects, including those who were eliminated and those that came to spectate, numbered far more than those that were in still in the competition. Many people who no longer felt pressure from the competition liked to go to the gambling dens to make bets with low stakes for the thrill in support of their own sects, enriching a little of their cultivation life. Although the next round’s drawing results had not yet been revealed, many people knew of the incident the other day at the teahouse. They knew the Feng Yu Sword, Zhong Shan, and the disciple of the Sword Saint, Yin Biyue, would eventually have a battle, so the betting started up early. The force that Yin Biyue previously displayed in battle with his sword dispelled the rumors of his qi deviation and cultivation being greatly damaged. Thus, the odds of victory and defeat between the two didn’t differ very much. But due to Zhong Shan’s greater cultivation stage, more people had bet on him. After all, people in the previous round had questioned his Breakthrough Stage cultivation, suspecting that he was already a half-step into the Lesser Vessel Stage. At Lake Qiu, Luo Mingchuan and Yin Biyue’s lives were repeating cycles of cultivating, practicing swordsmanship, and guiding Chatterbox. Duan Chongxuan was busy cultivating, practicing swordsmanship, and being guided. Even in the midst of his busy schedule, he still ran to the gambling dens to firmly bet on his own shixiong. As a result, his image of being exceptionally handsome, young, and rich became even grander in the hearts of the Ye City’s girls. Practically everyone engaged in this big trending bet. Only the Bao Pu Zong’s disciples did not participate. It was not because they were concentrated on cultivating, detaching themselves from the low-class fun. Instead, it was because initially in the battle between Yin Biyue and He Lai, they had borrowed a large sum of money from Ye City’s bank to put their bets on He Lai winning. After they lost the bet, they couldn’t gather all the money at the time. The debt was completely paid off to the bank by the elder who had led the group with his own personal funds. This incident was passed on back to HengDuan Mountain in the Western Continent, and the sect’s highest elders criticized it as a ‘disgrace’. Therefore, the Bao Pu Zong disciples were all now too afraid to go gamble. Ye City’s hottest days of summer were almost over, and cool breezes arose when the setting sun fell to the west. The city’s residents carried bamboo chairs out to the streets to enjoy the cool air. They fluttered their fans and nibbled sunflower seeds, discussing the latest hot news of the Flower Picking Festival. The blossom houses hurriedly hung up colorful lights; the merchants on the main street started to prepare for the night market; and the lanterns in the wealthy homes were also lit early. The Cang Ya disciples at Lake Qiu ended a day of practicing swords and cultivating. Some went back to their rooms to prepare for meditation, and some went to the city center to join in on the excitement. Twilight sprinkled from the westward sky, and the lake surface reflected rays of fluttering gold. Tired birds returned back to their nests, and kitchen smoke spiraled skyward in the distance between the white walls and gray tiles of homes. People beside the lake gradually went away; chatter and laughter also scattered, and Lake Qiu quieted down at dusk. Only a slight breeze was blowing, lifting the thousand strands of the weeping willows circling the lake. So far, the current situation was no different from the past. But today was foreordained to be different. Because there was a young lady standing under the willow tree. No one knew when she came and how long she stood there. She seemed as if she had appeared there silently, without even the evening winds nor the weeping willows noticing. She wore a purple qipao with wide sleeves and a narrow waist, embroidered with faint patterns of flourishing flowers. The hairpin in her hair was neither wood nor jade, with only the smooth pearl embedded at the end glistening in the sunset. When the white-haired youth pushed open his door and walked toward the lake with his sword, she smiled lightly. A smile of three springs 6. Even if the weeping willow was more graceful, how could it compare to her gentle dimples? Even if the lake was more radiant, how could it compare with her bright eyes?
1) 恨铁不成钢 (wishing iron would instantly turn into steel): resentful towards someone for failing expectation and impatient to see improvements.
2) 施主 (shizhu): term used by monk to address a layperson
3) 妇人之仁 (housewives’ sympathies): excessive clemency
4) 烟儿 (Yan-er): A nickname for Qu Duiyan
5) # (it’s a hashtag)
6) 一笑三春 (a smile of three springs): It’s actually just the 3 months of spring.