Last chapter recap: Kong Hou talks about her past.
This chapter brought to you by me, and Adnana.
Chapter 23: New Disciples
Cheng Yi had been standing by the entrance to the Immortality Questing Path. Hearing the music sound, he abruptly turned in the direction of Moon Perching Peak. The other disciples with him saw Cheng Yi’s great reaction and were puzzled. “Cheng Yi Shixiong, what happened?”
“Stay here. I will be back soon.” Cheng Yi darted in the direction of Moon Perching Peak.
The other disciples were confused. “What could make Cheng Yi Shixiong rush off in a hurry?”
“Maybe Kong Hou Shimei has ended her seclusion?” a disciple said. “Two years ago, Kong Hou Shimei entered seclusion and hasn’t come out since she received her lifebond talisman. I wonder how she is.”
As the two spoke, a youth in disheveled clothing appeared on the Immortality Questing Path. His hair was in disarray as he climbed up, his fingers covered in mud and bruises. His face was blue from the cold, but his eyes were frighteningly bright.
After stepping onto the last step, he showed a smile and dropped to the snow-covered ground.
He had climbed up; he had finally climbed up.
Moon Perching Peak.
Kong Hou walked out of her cave residence. Seeing the snowflakes flying outside, she sighed. “Another winter?”
“Shimei, you are out?” Cheng Yi flew over. Seeing Kong Hou’s relaxed expression, he asked with a smile, “Everything went smoothly?”
“Yes.” Kong Hou nodded and pointed towards the distant Immortality Questing Path. “There are many people over there—is something major occurring in the sect?”
“The sect will admit disciples every decade. Those are ordinary people wanting to join Splendid Cloud Sect.” Cheng Yi saw Kong Hou seemed curious about this matter. “Do you want to go watch?”
“Yes.” Kong Hou nodded. She gathered her energy and jumped, flying in the direction of Immortality Questing Path.
At the entrance of Immortality Questing Path, there were some ordinary people with tired expressions and no cultivation at all standing with Splendid Cloud Sect’s disciples. Regardless of how grand or worn their clothing was, none of them dared to talk loudly. They tried to put on their best in front of Splendid Cloud Sect.
“A celestial is flying over,” A youth in his teens looked into the sky and gasped in a small voice.
Everyone else looked up. A young woman dressed in a jade-colored dress flew amidst the snow, her hair flying in the wind. The ordinary mortals who rarely interacted with cultivators became dumbstruck.
The youth in worn clothing looked up and copied everyone else in showing admiration. He adjusted his worn clothing, pushed away the hair on his forehead, and completely exposed his handsome face.
However, the young woman did not go near them. She looked at them with a smile from midair and gave them the bow of a peer from a distance. Then she took out a flying sword from her sleeve, stepped onto it and flew away.
“That female celestial just now is so beautiful.” A slightly heavy youth dressed in brocade robes said a long time later.
“That is an apprentice of our sect. If you are good, maybe you will have a chance to call her shijie or *shishu.” The disciple of Splendid Cloud Sect laughed and said, “Two more hours. In two hours, Immortality Questing Path will be closed and the next test will begin”
“Apprentice…” the youth with disheveled clothing murmured and balled his fists.
“Why didn’t you go down to watch?” Cheng Yi asked Kong Hou. “You aren’t curious?”
“I’m afraid I will affect their performance if I go.” Kong Hou jumped off the flying sword and stood in the middle of the training grounds. She had been brought back directly by Master. Looking at those disciples that were putting their lives at risk trying to join the sect, she felt slightly guilty.
“One year is unlike another. You think more and more completely.” Cheng Yi saw several other members of the sect walking over and knew they were coming for Kong Hou. He said hurriedly, “I’m going to the test place to see what I can do to help.Your second shixiong is in seclusion. Later, go see your master.” Finishing, he did not wait for Kong Hou to respond before he turned and left.
It wasn’t that he did not want to chat longer with Kong Hou. But Ling Hui and the rest of the female apprentices talked too much. Whenever he saw them, he felt his head ache. He could only stay away from them. After staying more than a century in Splendid Cloud Sect, he still couldn’t understand how women could discuss any topic for so long. What confused him even more was that they spent a lot of energy on their jewelry, hair and in talking, but why did their cultivation not fall behind?
While, most of the time, Cheng Yi felt an unspeakable fear towards this group of women, he still hoped that his little shimei could be like them. She would be happy, and no one would bully her.
“Kong Hou Shimei.” Ling Hui and the other apprentices surrounded Kong Hou. “You got much prettier.”
When one looked at members of one’s family, they would always feel that their shimei were the best. Ling Hui felt this when she looked at Kong Hou. In her eyes, Kong Hou’s pale skin was delicate, her eyes were lively, and her black hair was like black silk. Any part was good.
“Shimei‘s cultivation grew again,” another female apprentice said in shock. “Just two years, and Shimei has Base Building fifth level cultivation?” Even for a genius suited for cultivation, this growth rate was too fast.
“Kong Hou Shimei,” a *shijie said hesitantly, “cultivation is important, but you cannot work yourself too hard. We pursue the path of immortality, but if we only live for our pursuit, what is the meaning in immortality?” She was afraid that Kong Hou would focus on cultivation and lose other parts of herself to the point she wouldn’t even have normal emotions. How could she pursue the path of immortality then?
The divine pitied the heavens and earth. If someone with no emotion or heart could ascend, then the stones at the side of the road would have ascended already. Why would they be cultivating their bodies and minds? From the beginning of history until now, no one who cultivated an emotionless path ended up well.
“Shijie, do not worry, I know.” Kong Hou smiled. Her cultivation had not advanced for two months. After thinking for a long time, she finally found the cause. Starting from birth, she lived within the tall palace walls and never interacted with the outside world. Then her master took her to Splendid Cloud Sect. Spoiled by the shixiong and shijie, she only occasionally went down the mountain and never truly interacted with the “outside.”
Without any knowledge or contact, how could she broaden her vision?
She was lucky to have successfully reached Base Building. But if she continued to stay inside Splendid Cloud Sect and be the little shimei spoiled by the shijie and shixiong, she would never have a chance to grow up, and could not become strong.
“Ling Hui Shijie, have you gone out alone?” Kong Hou asked.
“Of course. Every one of the apprentices will go out alone to gain experience when at Base Building Stage.” When she said this, Ling Hui paused. “Shimei, you want to go out?” When she had gone out, she had lived away for more than three decades. While Shimei had a similar cultivation to hers back then, Shimei was younger. Wang Tong Shishu most likely would not agree.
Kong Hou smiled and didn’t speak
In order to divert her from the thought, Ling Hui said, “Go, let’s go see how many disciples we are accepting this year.”
Inside Bravery Meeting Hall, the disciples who had passed the tests stood in two rows. Out of consideration for these ordinary people without cultivation, several large brass lotus furnaces had been put in the hall which made the hall warm.
The sect master, peak masters, and supervisors were all in the hall looking at the twenty disciples without any emotion. While they had no surprises from the disciples who passed the tests this year, they were not disappointed. The true surprise had been brought back by Wang Tong six years ago.
“What is your name?” Qing Yuan pointed at the youth with worn clothing standing second from the left.
“This disciples is Gui Ling.” The youth knelt down, his hands held level with his forehead as he pressed his head down.
“Gui Ling.” Qing Yuan nodded. “Single spirit base cultivator—not bad.”
“Qing Yuan Shidi is preparing to accept him as an inner sect disciple of Daybreak Cloud Peak?” Pei Huai asked curiously.
The face of the youth on the ground moved, but he still knelt steady as though he had not reacted to Pei Huai’s words at all.
“No need, we will proceed across to the rules.” Qing Yuan shook his head minutely. “Let’s discuss this at the test a year later.” A single spirit base cultivator was rare, but it was not good to single him out among the twenty disciples who had just joined today.
Pei Huai sighed in relief. He felt that it was much better this way as well.
“Then, let’s end here.” Sitting at the center, Heng Yan took a sip of tea and said to the supervisor of Five Elements Hall, “Lead these disciples to rest, and let them rest for a few days. Have them become familiar with the sect environment before teaching them the beginnings of cultivation.”
“Yes.” The supervisor of the Five Elements Hall stood and said warmly to the twenty disciples, “Come with me.”
The twenty disciples hurriedly followed the supervisor. Along the way, they carefully examined their surroundings. The clean and white floor underneath their feet was a great surprise to them. The flying steeds and the other members of the sects on their swords drew in their eyes.
“Whoa!” The heavy-set disciple dressed in grand clothing couldn’t help but gasp. “Such beautiful celestials.”
The new disciple turned around. Several beautiful female disciples stood in a nearby white jade pavilion and were looking over.
“Everyone, please come with me and do not linger here.” The supervisor led them turning around the stairs and in another direction. “Those are the apprentices of the peaks. If you meet them in the future, you must be polite.”
“We will remember.”
The youth with worn clothing looked back towards the pavilion, his black eyes reflecting the white snow.
Translator Ramblings: Kong Hou got special treatment, others have to go through admissions.