This chapter has been brought to you by me, and larkspur.
Chapter 59 Oath
As the energy sea was filled with the forming physical energy, and as the physical energy started to nourish his body, a fresh presence emanated from his body.
This was like an orchid slowly blooming.
At this moment in the leek garden, Li Daoji stood before the grass hut. While there was no way he could sense the changes in Ding Ning’s body, he knew Ding Ning’s previous cultivation the best. He knew that, before this, Ding Ning’s cultivation advancement had been extremely steady..
He had great hopes for this stability.
At this moment, he was looking at the clouds in the sky when he suddenly felt the fresh presence emanating from the grass hut. His astute mind immediately understood what had transpired. He showed a rare smile of excitement.
His feet tapped lightly on the ground as he sprung forward. His body leapt across clouds and landed on the mountain paths of White Goat Cave.
Usually, he flew by like this. But this time, his jump had been very strong, and the height quite astounding. The bang of his landing echoed through the gorge.
Li Daoji’s unusualness caught many eyes..
One such eyes were of Zhang Yi. He was originally descending the mountain and preparing to cultivate at the bottom of the White Goat Cave. But when he noticed the peculiarity in Li Daoji’, he instantly thought of a possibility. He inexplicably froze.
“Sect Uncle Li Daoji …” He bowed in greeting.
Before he could say more, Li Daoji nodded at him from further along the path and said, “He had a breakthrough.”
“This is …” Zhang Yi’s frigid body trembled violently. While he had been somewhat prepared, when he heard the wods, he also jumped off the path in joy and surprise.
“Such a great shock!” Several moments later, he had finally recovered, his voice trembled as he managed to say a complete sentence.
“Ding Ning really had a breakthrough?”
“Ding Ning really reached realm two?”
“Ding Ning really got Energy Refinement in a month?!”
Almost all of the students of White Goat Cave were on the mountain paths now. Gasping, they looked towards the sky, as if glimpsing a sudden thunderstorm.
Even Xue Wangxu who was meditating in the tallest temple detected the voices.
He opened his eyes and immediately understood.
“Ouch …” A pained gasp.
He had accidentally pulled out a few strands from his beard.
The sun was leaning westward, and the sunset growing.
Green Vine Sword School was preparing an evening banquet to welcome the participants and guests.
Among them were also over twenty students from various cultivation places who were here to spectate. They were now gathered in an empty space before a stone hall in Green Vine Sword School. With the addition of Green Vine Sword School’s students, it had turned into an even busier gathering.
Nangong Caishu was sitting beside Xu Heshan and Xie Changsheng. Xie Rou, Xie Changsheng’s older sister whom he feared, was sitting right next to Xie Changsheng.
Xie Changsheng wore a grimace on his face as every once in a while,he was showered with words of reproof.
“Up until now, White Goat Cave has remained quiet. It is almost one month. If someone bets with you now, will you bet?”
“I do not know what was on your mind. Even if you are oblivious to the hardships of earning money, you should think more for the family. Why did you jump out and argue with Gu Xichun? Gu Xichun is likely to enter Min Mountain Sword Sect to study. Even if he loses in the Min Mountain Sword Trials, with his present progress of cultivation, he will have relatively good accomplishments in the future. Our family does business by being at peace with others. You just cause trouble. If you do not quiet down, you will make enemies for the family all over the place.”
“The family has given you money to be used towards cultivation or making friends. Was it for betting on this wine shop youth?”
Xie Changsheng was used to Xie Rou”s temper and earfuls Add to that his usual allowance was in her hands, he could only recite in his mind, I cannot hear, I cannot hear.
At Xie Rou’s repeated mention of “the wine shop youth”, Nangong Caishu slowly raised her brows.
“I heard you said in front of Green Vine Sword School if Ding Ning could have a breakthrough in a month, you will let him become Xie Changsheng’s older-brother-in-law.” She couldn’t help but look at the grim faced Xie Rou and interject. “Does Xie Changsheng have any other older sisters?”
“He only has one sister, me.”
Xie Rou could detect Nangong Caishu’s underlying meaning. She smiled brightly and said, “Caiwei meimei, even if he did have another older sister, could I make such a major decision for someone else?”
Nangong Caishu thought of Ding Ning’s health and then of the pill medicines that her father had yet to deliver. She felt even more restless and coldly retorted.
“Then you are serious? If Ding Ning really does reach Energy Refinement in a month, you will marry him and no one else?”
Xu Heshan was shocked. He couldn’t help wondering, was the autumn really so dry that it had turned people dry? Even Nangong Caishu was exceptionally hard and argumentative in her words.
Looking at Nangong Caishu’s cold mein, Xie Rou stilled slightly and then smiled uncaringly. “Who doesn’t know that our Xie Family keeps their promises in business? I am not a man, but I will not go back on my word.”
Just now, Nangong Caishu had not spoken softly. So much so, that even Xu Heshan felt that Nangong Caishu was a bit strange today. Xie Rou’s firm and powerful response had reached every ear everyone in the vicinity.
Gu Xichun, who had been at ease in his lonesome, noticed these going ons. He shook his head and smiled disdainfully. He thought, it has been long since they’d entered the gates. And people were still discussing this person. So boring!
Right at this moment, heavy footsteps sounded.
Someone was rushing over hurriedly, unable to control the physical energy of their feet and leaving whirls of dust in their wake.
Nangong Caishu frowned and looked towards the sound. She discovered it was her senior sect brother Xiang Miao.
Xiang Miao had joined a year before her, and was a loyal and honest person. On any given day, he was normally more composed than she was. But right now, he was quite the contrary.
She couldn’t help but ask, “Senior Sect Brother Xiang,, what happened that you are so panicked?”
“One … one … one …” Xiang Miao’s face was flushed, breathing rapid due to strong emotions. He repeated the word “one” three times but could not say anything else.
Nangong Caishu’s eyes suddenly lit up. Her breathing paused and she instinctively asked, “Did Ding Ning really reach realm two Energy Refinement in a month?”
The students present heard Nangong Caishu. Their first reaction was disbelief yet Xiang Miao’s response drove the place into absolute silence. Everyone seemed to have frozen by the arctic winds.
Xiang Miao breathed heavily and nodded.
Gu Xichun’s disdainful smile froze on his face. His fingers as well.
A wave of shock and clarity due to absurdity set his mind buzzing.
“Is this true?” Xie Changsheng exclaimed loudly and broke the silence. He had a complicated expression on his face, as though someone had dyed him motley.
Xiang Miao nodded again.
By this time, he had regained much of his composure and could speak in complete sentences again. He forced out, “Just now, White Goat Cave sent news … Ding Ning had a successful breakthrough, and reached Energy Refinement Realm.”
Gu Xichun’s face started to pale. His stiff fingers trembling slightly.
He did not need to ask for any proof because the news was so shocking that Xiang Miao must have confirmed it carefully before coming over to announce.
But no one was paying attention to his expression right now.
Every gaze, had unconsciously, converged on the person standing next to Xie Changsheng, Xie Rou
Everybody was curious to know what was running in her mind at this moment.
Xie Rou’s face was deathly pale. Her eyelashes fluttered. The overbearing and stern older sister seemed to have transformed into a gentle and pitiful young girl in need of support.
Nangong Caishu was happy. She wanted to laugh out loud.
Yet unexpectedly, in an instant, Xie Rou’s softness had turned into steel. Her lips were still trembling but the lines on her face were cold and hard.
“The Xie Family of Guangzhong will keep their promises, our word is worth a thousand gold. Since Ding Ning has had his breakthrough today, and reached Energy Refinement, I will uphold my words and marry none other than him.”
All the people present wanted to witness her humiliation, even her own younger brother. Yet as her words fell, she shocked everyone present.
Xie Changsheng was stunned. Was this real?
Then a clear sound stunned everyone present into speechlessness.
She pulled out the sword by her waist. Her sword was thick, heavy and straight. It was unlike a sword that a woman would usually use. Its blade was a grey-black like half-burnt ash. However, the straight ridge was a bright white. The long sword was split lengthwise from its hilt in black and white. Even the scabbard had the scale and craftsmanship of the Guangzhong area.
The sword sliced through the cold air, and cut through a lock of her hair.
A black lock of hair fell down into her hand.
“The eldest daughter of the Guangzhong Xie Family, Xie Rou, swears so.”
Her cold voice sounded and intimidating the people around.
Everybody was shell-shocked.
No one had imagined that this woman from Guangzhong would be so fierce that she would swear on the spot.
Translator Ramblings: Cough, Ding Ning got engaged without knowing it.