Last chapter recap: Kong Hou meets her elders of the sect.
This chapter has been brought to you by me, and Adnana.
Chapter 7: Confidence
Seeing Master’s shixiong and shidi silent, Kong Hou didn’t know what she had said wrong, and only smiled sweetly at the peak masters.
Heng Yan’s heart shook. He reached for the fruit on the table beside him and wanted to put them into Kong Hou’s hands. But the cold feeling from the fruit plate caused him to calm down. Splendid Cloud Sect hadn’t had many children in recent years. Old people like him didn’t have any experience with children.
He thought and then took out several bottles of pills to give to Kong Hou as a meeting gift. “Shibo didn’t know of your arrival and didn’t prepare a first meeting gift. Take these pills for when you need them. But you have to remember—when you step onto the path of cultivation, you cultivate the body, you cultivate the mind, and you will not reach the highest point relying on material items.”
“Thank you, Shibo, for your guidance.” Kong Hou held the medicine bottles and her anxious heart calmed.
Wang Tong sat steadily on his chair. After all of the peak masters gave Kong Hou first meeting gifts, he said, “I just divined the days—it is an auspicious day three days from now. All five elements are in harmony. I have decided to have the apprenticeship ceremony on that day.”
Heng Yan knew that while Wang Tong wasn’t a reliable person, he was a stubborn one. If what he decided didn’t affect the sect, he would not change his mind. He looked at the adorable and obedient child in front of him and nodded. “All right.”
Hearing the sect master’s agreement, Wang Tong turned and said to Cheng Yi, “Cheng Yi, go and inform the Five Elements Hall to prepare to hold an apprenticeship ceremony.”
“What is the hurry—are you afraid I will regret it?” Seeing him so impatient, Heng Yan didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. “This child has just arrived at the sect; take her to rest.” The matters were finished. If he didn’t hurry them out, Wang Tong and Qing Yuan would start up again.
“Many thanks, Sect Master Shixiong.” Wang Tong stood and glanced at Qing Yuan. He said lightly, “Today, I will give Shixiong face and not argue with a certain person.”
“You!” Qing Yuan slapped the arm of his chair and suddenly stood. “Wang Tong, do not go overboard. I have endured you for a long time.”
“All right, all right.” Pei Huai and the other two peak masters hurried to stop him. “Wang Tong has just returned; do not make a fuss.”
“I’m not making a fuss—he is deliberately provoking me.” Restrained by his shixiong and shidi, Qing Yuan couldn’t move. He glared, blowed on his beard in anger. If not for the fact that there was a child present, he would have started cursing already.
As the master of a peak, even as impulsive as he was, he knew not to say curse words in front of a young child.
“Ha, ha.” Wang Tong laughed disdainfully and held Kong Hou’s hand. “Apprentice, we are leaving.”
Kong Hou nodded obediently and pretended not to have seen the grudge between Master and the shibo.
“Good apprentice, you have just come to the sect. Remember to stay away from some narrow-minded people.”
Kong Hou: “…”
“Do you know what are narrow-minded people?”
Kong Hou heard the sound of items smashing to the ground behind her and shook her head silently.
“It is the people who like to laugh at others behind their backs. They are the most devious and cunning.”
The sound of chairs being overturned came from behind them.
Kong Hou looked at her smug master and felt slightly weird.
Was the cultivation world… really like this?
Five Elements Hall was the branch of Splendid Cloud Sect responsible for duties and reception. Kong Hou looked at the people methodically performing their duties and took a deep breath to suppress the panic and worries inside.
After she followed Master out of the main hall, her master had returned to Moon Perching Peak to stabilize his mental state. Eldest Shixiong was the one who accompanied her. The supervisor of Five Elements Hall was extremely polite to Cheng Yi, and his slow movements sped up slightly.
After registering Kong Hou’s name, the supervisor asked, “What generation will this miss be in?”
“This is my little shimei. In three days, Master will take her on as his last apprentice,” Cheng Yi answered. “Please put importance on the apprenticeship ceremony.”
The supervisor’s hands paused slightly as he looked at Kong Hou who was just a bit taller than the table. He said with a smile, “Cheng Yi Shishu1, you are too courteous. Young Shishu, please give me your hand. This shizhi 2is going to take a drop of your heart blood to ignite your life token.”
Every disciple of Splendid Cloud Sect would have one life token hanging in the sect. If the life token shattered one day, it meant that this disciple had passed away.
Kong Hou touched her chest. Would taking blood hurt?
“Give me your left hand,” Cheng Yi said.
Kong Hou reached out her hand in puzzlement. Then she saw Eldest Shixiong rapidly point at her fingertip. A drop of blood landed on the jade token. The jade token hummed softly, giving off a bright light, and then flew towards the main hall.
“Behind the main hall is the Black Sun Hall. The life tokens of all sect disciples hang in there.” Cheng Yi took out a medicine bottle and rubbed salve over Kong Hou’s fingertip. “Is it painful?”
Kong Hou shook her head. “No.”
Cheng Yi smiled and rubbed Kong Hou’s head. “Let’s go. I will take you to Moon Perching Peak to choose a cave residence.”
“Cheng Yi Shishu.” The supervisor called Cheng Yi. “Kong Hou Shishu hasn’t been evalu—”
Kong Hou thought that the other had forgotten something important and turned back to look at the supervisor. She found the supervisor had an awkward expression and said to her with a smile, “Nothing.”
“Yes.” Cheng Yi nodded and picked up Kong Hou to jump onto the flying sword. “I will take you around Splendid Cloud Sect.”
The scenery was different when viewed from up high. Occasionally, other members of the sect would appear in the air on flying swords or other weapons. Kong Hou admired their freedom of flight. “Shixiong, if I start cultivating, will I be able to fly?”
“When you reach Base Building Stage, you can be like them.”
“Base Building?” Kong Hou’s eyes widened. “How long until cultivators can build their base?”
“In Lingyou World, only one person in a thousand is able to cultivate. For many cultivators, they just stay in the first stage of cultivation, Energy Refinement, for their entire lives.” Looking at Little Shimei‘s curiosity-filled eyes, Cheng Yi still told her the truth about how difficult the path of cultivation was.
“Energy Refinement, Base Building, Mind Activation, Core Formation, Mind Manifestation, Projection, Mind Dividing, Transcendental, Great Vehicle, and Ordeal Surpassing. These ten stages are all piled with white bones.” Cheng Yi pointed in the direction of Black Sun Hall. “Do you see the wooden tower behind Black Sun Hall?”
Following Cheng Yi’s finger, Kong Hou saw the lonely wooden tower behind Black Sun Hall. For some unknown reason, she felt coldness from this wooden tower.
“That tower holds countless jade tokens that have dimmed. The strongest were Great Vehicle Stage forebears, and the weakest include Energy Refinement Stage disciples.” Cheng Yi looked seriously at Kong Hou. “Little Shimei, you need to remember that the path of cultivation is both long and arduous. Are you afraid?”
Kong Hou looked dazedly at that wooden tower until the snow fell into her eyes. She started and then shook her head. “I’m not afraid.”
Kong Hou shook her head. “My mother-empress said to me one had to walk forward bravely in order to live.”
Cheng Yi laughed lowly. “Yes. On the path of cultivation, one has to walk bravely in order to live.”
Only those that understood this truth could go further and longer on the path of cultivation.
On nights when the moon came out, people on Moon Perching Peak would see the most beautiful moon and the most beautiful night, so it was called Moon Perching Peak. However, its beautiful name could not hide the fact that the cave residences on the peak were simple and crude.
The jade bed with a red silk covering, green carpets, and a dirt-colored bottle with some little yellow flowers inside—this could not be called pretty.
Cheng Yi brought Kong Hou in. He almost couldn’t control his expression when he saw the decorations inside the cave residence. Master had returned early to set up Shimei‘s cave residence, and the results were this?
“Is this cave just for me alone?” Kong Hou was full of curiosity towards a living environment like this. She had read about it in the storybooks. Many cultivators lived in cave residences, but she hadn’t expected the cave to be so large!
“Thank you, Master; thank you, Shixiong!” Kong Hou looked with bright eyes at Cheng Yi and Wang Tong. “I like this place.”
Wang Tong was smug. He just knew that little girls like red and green things. Tan Feng, that unfilial apprentice, said it didn’t look good. Wasn’t Kong Hou happy right now?
Cheng Yi looked at his smug master and his happy little shimei. He sigh heavily inside. He worried that Master would affect Little Shimei‘s tastes.
“It’s good as long as you like this. This master will be reinforcing the mental state in the next two days. If you have any questions, ask your two shixiong.” In a good mood, Wang Tong left, stroking his beard, his smile still on his face.
The jade bed was covered with a thick soft mattress. Kong Hou patted the jade bed and turned to Cheng Yi. “Shixiong, will the jade bed help increase our cultivation?”
“While it cannot increase cultivation, jade has the effect of accumulating spirit energy. It can help us absorb the spirit energy from the world when we are resting.” Cheng Yi was slightly surprised. He didn’t know how his little shimei who had never encountered the cultivation world would know things like this.
“Little Shimei is so smart to know even this.”
“Before Master brought me to the cultivation world, I read a wondrous cultivation story that spoke of many magical things in the cultivation world,” Kong Hou said. “The protagonist in it was strong.”
“Shimei, storybooks are not true…”
“I always felt like I’m like the storybook’s protagonist, and will have magical encounters.” In this moment, Kong Hou’s eyes shone like stars. “Then I encountered Master and shixiong, so my feeling wasn’t wrong.”
Cheng Yi swallowed what he was about to say next. He wanted to say the storybooks of the mortal world were just from people’s imaginations. The cultivation world was completely different from the stories. Not everyone could be like the protagonists of stories, encountering magical opportunities and great enemies. No one had ascended from the cultivation world for almost a millennium.
But facing Kong Hou’s eyes, he could not speak.
It did not seem wrong for children to have optimistic anticipation towards the future.
“Then—” Cheng Yi bent down and rubbed Kong Hou’s head “—little Shimei needs to work hard.”
“Yes.” Kong Hou went on tiptoes and patted Cheng Yi’s shoulder. “Don’t worry, when I ascend, I will take you all with me.” In this moment, Kong Hou felt there was a thousand catties’ weight on her shoulders.
“Thank you.” Cheng Yi almost couldn’t control his laughter.
“You’re welcome.” Kong Hou thought and then added sagely, “We are fellow apprentices—there’s no need for such thanks.”
Cheng Yi finally couldn’t stop himself from laughing out loud.
Who told him that children were troublesome? They were clearly adorable.
Translator Ramblings: Does telling white lies to children ever work out?