Last chapter recap: Kong Hou visits a bookstore and then an inn as she starts her travels.
This chapter has been brought to you by me, and Adnana.
Chapter 26: Ripples
“Sir, is this servant not pretty enough that you invite other women to our residence?” The female servant next to the man smiled seductively, her hand on the man’s arm as she looked out of the corner of her eye at Kong Hou.
“Of course you are the best, but your master likes all kinds of flowers and cannot bear to have such a beauty living alone at the inn.” The man gave the female servant a kiss. Waving the glittering fan in his hand, he smiled thinly, “Don’t you think so, Beauty?”
He thought that this female would panic or be angry, but surprisingly, the other’s large beautiful eyes seemed… excited?
What was she excited about? Shouldn’t he be the one excited at propositioning a beauty? When he propositioned others, when others showed panic, fear, and terror, he felt a feeling of accomplishment. This gaze filled with curiosity and excitement did not excite him, but made him feel as though he was the one being propositioned.
As a wastrel, he felt extremely dissatisfied.
“Are you propositioning me?” The young girl dressed in green walked to his table and looked down at him. Her eyes reflected his figure. He subconsciously moved back a fraction. “This lord sees you have some beauty and is willing to proposition you, understand?”
“Oh?” The young woman nodded, crossing her arms. “According to the usual trend of events, someone will soon come to sort out wastrels like you.”
Du Jing slapped the table and said smugly, “Why don’t you go out and see who in Mound City dares to sort me out? Do you know who I am?”
“I don’t want to know.” Kong Hou saw that this wastrel only had Energy Refinement fifth level cultivation, and did not want to pay attention to him. She turned and gave the money to the innkeeper. “Give me a first-class room.”
“Honored Transcendent, please wait for a moment.” The innkeeper quickly made a registration and beckoned for a maid dressed in grey clothing to lead Kong Hou to her room. Along the way, he put away everything of value that was on the table. People in his profession needed a good pair of eyes. Master Du Jing and this honored transcendent might start fighting.
“Stop!” Du Jing stood up from his chair and pointed at Kong Hou with his fan. “Did I let you go?”
“All right.” Kong Hou stopped walking. “Since you are so determined to let me know who you are, then speak—who are you?”
“I am the son of the mayor of Mound City, Du Jing.” Du Jing spun the fan in his hand. “I see you are travelling alone, and you do not look like a disciple of the major sects. What are you doing roaming around?”
“What does travelling alone have to do with my sect?” Kong Hou tsked. “Cultivation has nothing to do with pomp, or do you need a group of people carrying a sedan and throwing around flower petals like being on stage acting a play?”
“Innkeeper, clean up the best yard you have here.” The wind rose, carrying snowflakes and flower petals, as several women dressed in colored clothing walked in. Their bodies gave off a flower fragrance, and their expression was frosty as though everyone else in the surroundings did not exist.
The woman walking at the center had a silk covering over her face. Her sunset colored celestial dress flowed with light, and she looked like a goddess.
All the guests in the hall turned silent. The servants seemed used to the ordinary people being dumbstruck and snorted. One servant girl threw spirit stones at the innkeeper. “Make sure it is clean; our celestial cannot endure any uncleanliness.”
After ordering this, she bowed and picked up the copper stove she had been carrying. She ushered her master towards the back, leaving behind a ground covered in flower petals and fragrance.
“Cough.” Du Jing coughed and pushed the words “on a stage acting out a play” from his mind. He then raised his chin towards the back of the building. “See that—that is the presence of a major sect.”
Kong Hou looked down at the flower petals on the ground and considered an even more serious question. How many flowers did one have to harvest to have flowers accompany them on their whole journey?
“Hey.” Du Jing tapped the table with his fan. “Woman, will you come with me?”
“Just now, a great beauty passed right by you. Why don’t you ask her to come with you?” Kong Hou blinked. “Am I more beautiful than her?”
“What nonsense. Can I afford to provoke a disciple of a major sect like that?” Du Jing was extremely honest. “I’m not stupid.” Even if he was a wastrel, he was a perceptive and smart wastrel. He would not offend those that he could not afford to, and being cowardly was his way of life.
“Then you are really amazing?” Kong Hou rolled her eyes. She turned and walked upstairs, ignoring him.
“Hey, hey, hey, I’m telling you, you must go with me today…”
Du Jing had not finished speaking when he saw this adorable and lively young girl pull a sword out of her sleeve. The sleeve gave off glowing golden light, the tip pointing straight at him, not even a centimeter away from his head.
“A first-class talisman.” The woman who had been leaning against Du Jing quickly pulled her hand away, jumping to the side in fear. She did not dare to be close to him right now.
“Let-let’s talk in peace. It is not refined to swing weapons about.” Du Jing moved to the side. The sword moved as well. The sharp and cold sword energy caused his eyes to burn in pain as cold sweat flowed down his body. Who was this woman that she would have a first-class talisman?
“Really?” Kong Hou put one hand up to prop her face. “But I feel propositioning women is even less refined—how do you feel?”
“I feel you are right!” Drops of sweat rolled down his neck. Du Jing was afraid that this sword would shake accidentally and fly into his head.
“Speaking of this, your Mound City is actually under the governance of Splendid Cloud Sect. Splendid Cloud Sect usually hates people who proposition women.” Kong Hou waved her hand and put away her flying sword. “Do you know of the matter two years ago when a Mind Manifestation Forebear propositioned members of Splendid Cloud Sect?”
Du Jing wiped his sweat as he nodded repeatedly.
“Do you know what happened to him?” Kong Hou asked with a smile.
Du Jing froze. He didn’t dare to even wipe his head. “Celestial, forgive me. Celestial, forgive me. This one will never do anything like this in the future.” When he finished speaking, he crawled and stumbled out of the inn, not even turning back to look. He feared that if he ran slowly, Kong Hou’s sword would stab him.
The owner of the inn sighed in relief. Good, good, at least they didn’t start fighting. He bent down and took out the money pixu [^1] he had put into a drawer back out.
Kong Hou returned to her room, and put all the blankets and pillows on the bed to one side. She took out pillows and sheets from her storage ring and made the bed. Ling Hui Shijie had said to her that the bedspreads of many inns were unclean and it was safer to use her own.
The cultivation world was so good. She could store so many things in her storage ring. If this was in the mortal world, her luggage would take up several wagons.
Lying in an unfamiliar bed, Kong Hou could not go to sleep. She stood up and started to circulate spirit energy in her body. This inn was extremely quiet, so quiet there seemed to be no sound in the world.
A sharp scream interrupted the night and broke the silence of the inn. Kong Hou put on an outer robe and ran out, ignoring her loose hair. When she went downstairs, she saw a woman lying on the ground, her colorful robe stained red. What was most horrifying wasn’t her terrifying robe, but the strange and frozen smile on her face.
This woman was the servant who had spoken proudly to the innkeeper today. Now, she was dead.
“Yue Lian.” The servants in colorful robes who hurried over had ugly expressions. They turned and looked at the guests in the inn who had gathered, saying coldly, “The culprit is among you.”
“Jiejie, Yue Lian’s heart is gone,” a servant girl said in panic, “and her blood…”
The room was filled with the smell of blood and death. Kong Hou looked at these servant girls dressed in colorful robes and their furious expressions. She frowned and suddenly thought of that wastrel who had propositioned her and said he would take her along. Had that wastrel known something, or was it just coincidence?
“What happened?” The woman dressed in a flowing celestial dress walked in. Her hair was tied up loosely, but she was not wearing a silk veil, revealing her face. However, the people in the inn were shocked by Yue Lian’s terrible death and could not be shocked by her beauty.
“Miss, Yue Lian is dead,” a servant girl said with red eyes.
The woman frowned and walked forward quickly. She bent and put a hand on Yue Lian’s hand. Then she wiped her hand with a handkerchief, turned and said to the crowd, “Everyone, this one is Ling Bo of Clear Dawn Sect. This one’s servant girl has died of suspicious causes. Please, give me some face and answer some questions for me.”
“So Celestial is Clear Dawn Sect’s Celestial Ling Bo; we did not know. A member of your noble sect died so horribly. It should be investigated.”
“Celestial, please ask. This one will tell you everything this one knows.”
“Thank you, everyone.” Seeing everyone give her face, Ling Bo’s expression grew better. Her gaze moved around the crowd. “Has any of you found suspicious actions from those among you?”
Everyone looked at each other. While they did not dare to offend Clear Dawn Sect, they would not do things that would offend others. No one spoke.
Ling Bo knew what they were worried about. She had the servant girls guard the doors before saying, “Then, may I ask, who came out of their rooms after going into their rooms today?”
Kong Hou looked dazedly at Ling Bo. She felt that this female cultivator was so beautiful, her loose hairstyle so pretty, her hand was so pretty—she was pretty all over. Even her angry state was beautiful. When such a beauty asked a question, even if her questions were ridiculous, no one would bear not to answer her.
As expected, the crowd cooperated with Ling Bo’s questions. They stated that they had not left, and used their neighbors as witnesses.
The killer hadn’t just killed Yue Lian—they had dug out her heart and drained her of blood. This was definitely not something an orthodox cultivator would do. But a villain would not have the label written on their faces. If someone deliberately concealed something, no one would be able to see it.
“Aiya!” One of the servant women ran out. Seeing the corpse on the ground, she moved a few steps back in fear. “Another, another one dead?”
“Another?” Kong Hou grabbed the important word. She looked at the mortal servant woman. “Something similar happened at this inn?”
When she realized what she had said inadvertently, the woman’s expression went pale. She didn’t dare to go close to the corpse. “No, no, no, not our inn. A month ago, the night of the fifteenth in the eleventh month, a girl died in Lucky Phoenix Inn. Supposedly, her heart was gone, and her blood had been drained out of her body. They all said it was the work of demons and evil spirits. The mayor sent people to patrol the entire city and did not find any suspects. We didn’t think…”
This was done by an evil cultivator?
If an evil cultivator was using people to cultivate, he would not attack someone eye-catching. Why had he chosen this servant girl from Clear Dawn Sect—wasn’t this making the incident even more attention-catching?
Was this an evil cultivator who liked to cause a stir?
Master once said, good people were all the same; bad people came in thousands of different shapes. Their thoughts and actions were things normal people couldn’t understand. Pity that this beautiful woman died under the claws of a demon.
Translator Ramblings: To the person who gave me ko-fi gold, thank you. I will read up and figure out what to do with it. In the meantime, if you like, send me an email with which novel you would like to see an extra chapter of.
Yes, this chapter is slightly earlier than usual. Any opinions on the new website layout?