Chapter 61 The Suspicions From The Water Prison
Zhang Yi looked apologetically and distraughtly at Zhen Tingan who had fallen spiritlessly to the ground in the rain. He did not know how to answer the question. Even he himself didn’t know the name of this move he had comprehend from the Painting Remnant Scroll.
“This move is called ‘Morning Rain Dampens The Dust.'” Ding Ning said softly. 1
Zhen Tingan’s body shook. After Ding Ning’s calm words, he saw the dust on the roof tiles of the houses, on the dry tree branches, and the cracks in the stone path had been washed away, and everything looked brand new.
Zhang Yi nodded apologetically to Zhen Tingan again and then looked nervously at Ding Ning. He asked, “Junior Sect Brother Ding Ning, how did I perform my move?”
Ding Ning looked at him and said emotionally, “Very well.”
Rain had come from the sky and turned into threads, with the wetness accumulating as the sword essence. This in itself was already extremely powerful. If Ding Ning had performed this move, he feared that many of the things in this alley would have been crushed.
Zhang Yi was gentle and kind. So when he used such a move, much of the murderousness had disappeared so the rain on the perimeter was gentle enough to wash away the dust. But this change also caused a transformation unexpected to Ding Ning. The primal energies of the universe that had gathered in the air had not vented down along the murderous intent, instead pouring towards the target of Zhang Yi’s sword essence. So while this move was overly soft, and the sword essence not fully expressed, the rain that had enveloped Zhen Tingan had become faster and more powerful.
The same sword and sword forms were different in the hands of different people.
Hearing Ding Ning’s praise, Zhang Yi finally showed a small relaxed smile. While Ding Ning was his junior sect brother, the other seemed to have stricter demands of him than Xue Wangxu. Also, he had comprehended this move with the help of Ding Ning. At least on this move, Ding Ning was his teacher. He naturally wanted to be recognized by his teacher after using the move for the first time.
Shen Yi was holding a large umbrella above Xue Wangxu. The water droplets that had flown towards Xue Wangxu had been blocked and flowed down along the surface of the umbrella. He only realized now why Ding Ning had him prepare an umbrella at the start. He remained ignorant that most of his clothing was soaked.
Xue Wangxu looked at the clean alley, the smiling Zhang Yi, and Shen Yi who was soaked to shield him from the water. He smiled in satisfaction and said, “This is very good.”
Zhang Yi had wanted Xue Wangxu to be happy. Hearing Xue Wangxu’s praise, he was sincerely happy and his face seemed to glow.
“You also know this kind of sword form?” Zhen Tingan struggled up from the ground and asked Ding Ning, his face pale.
While he didn’t know how Zhang Yi had comprehended this sword form, the attitude Zhang Yi had when asking Ding Ning just now caused him to sense many things.
Ding Ning glanced at Zhen Tingan and said, “I have not cultivated this sword form, but mine is even more powerful.”
Zhang Yi feared that Zhen Tingan would not give up and said urgently, “My junior sect brother Ding Ning does not speak false. If you fight him, I fear you will be seriously wounded.”
“So you are not cowardly, you are confident you can win.” Zhen Tingan’s expression changed and he turned towards the carriage after he spoke. But when he reached the front of his carriage, he said softly, “Being confident you can defeat me is useless. Other people will come find me … I know that some people do not want you to even have a chance of participating in the Min Mountain Sword Trials.”
Zhang Yi heard this and changed expression. He said urgently, “Who?”
Zhen Tingan did not respond. The carriage carried him and the other youth away quickly. Only the sound of hoofbeats echoed in the alley.
“This Zhen Tingan does not seem to be one to chat after a defeat.” Zhang Yi frowned worriedly and turned towards Ding Ning. “He must have heard something.”
Ding Ning frowned slightly. He already felt out of control with the appearance of the cultivator of Cloud Water Palace, the threat to Wang Taixu, and the changes that Zhangsun Qianxue had after subduing the Nine Hell King Sword. With this addition of matters like this, his mood immediately grew poor.
“What, they want someone to cripple me before I attend the Min Mountain Sword Trials?” Ding Ning smiled coldly. “Regardless of whether it is Li Lingjun or some other important person that wants to do this for an unknown reason, if they want to do such a thing, I fear they will first pay a painful price.”
Ding Ning’s cold smile caused Zhang Yi to feel an inexplicable wave of cold.
Xue Wangxu looked oddly at Ding Ning. Of course he did not know that Zhangsun Qianxue was Ding Ning’s sore point and Ding Ning had become restless due to Zhangsun Qianxue’s changes. However, he was sure that Ding Ning’s mood today was very different than usual.
Forbearance was what Xue Wangxu was most skilled in. So he coughed softly and prepared to talk with Ding Ning. But at this time, a voice came from the entrance of the alley.
“Higher cultivation, skilled tactics, even if it is a fated victory, it is useless because in many places, human lives are not worth money. People can easily find someone else to trade for your life.” The one who spoke was a middle-aged man in grey robes.
As Zhang Yi turned around, this grey-robed man was descending a grey carriage. This grey-robed man had ordinary features but his head was shaved and had an enormous tattoo with an indistinct picture on the back of his head.
His body gave off a darker and colder presence than the officials of the Divinity Bureau. He also gave off a musty odor as though he had not seen the sunlight for a long time. Or rather, even sunlight would avoid his scent.
Ding Ning’s cold smile previously had caused Zhang Yi to feel a wave of cold but this unknown middle-aged man caused Zhang Yi to feel waves of cold and a strong sense of trepidation.
This kind of presence was distant and slightly unfamiliar. But after several moments, Ding Ning recalled where this presence originated from.
He took a deep breath. His expression did not change much, but he started to secretly change the flow of energies in his body. He deliberately controlled his heartbeat to speed up and beat faster than usual.
“My surname is Xue, my name is Yi, not meaning clothing, but meaning one.” The grey-robed middle-aged man showed no intentions of walking closer. Ding Ning’s figure reflected in his grey eyes. He said coldly, “Ding Ning, I come here on the orders of Official Shen to take you to the Great Floating Water Prison for an investigation.”
Almost at the same time, in a dark room, Mo Qinggong, in blue robes, stood next to an official in grey robes who had his hands behind his back. This grey-robed official was unusually tall and thin. Compared to the slightly shorter and plumper Mo Qinggong, he looked like a corner turret.
In front of him was a smooth metal bed that looked like a mirror with all kinds of sharp glinting blades placed on top of it. Hanging above the metal bed were some metal hooks and chains. Anyone who saw this would feel that this was a slaughterhouse, or an autopsy room. Yet hanging on the hooks near the wall was a wriggling body that constantly gave off weak but bleak groans.
The sound of water came from the walls. This was a torture chamber. An ordinary torture room in the Great Floating Water Prison.
Watching the grey figure, half unskinned, wriggle like a worm, Mo Qinggong was still filled with discomfort even though he had come to the Great Floating Water Prison many times and the Divinity Bureau had torture chambers as well.
“Official Shen, you have spent so much effort on him, and he is like this. How can there be anything he has not yet told?” Mo Qinggong suppressed his discomfort, looked at the tall and thin grey-robed official and asked, “Why have Official Xue go find that wine shop youth to help with the investigation?”
“Because I have free time.”
The grey-robed official turned around. His face was even longer than usual people, and his eyes deep set. In this dark place, he did not look very different than a skull.
“You know, people are rarely sent to me. Since the Holy One give me a salary, I cannot just do nothing. Since one has been sent in, I will need to use his body to wile away the subsequent months where there is nothing to do. If I dig … I can always dig something useful out,” he looked expressionlessly at Mo Qinggong and said coldly.
Mo Qinggong coughed softly to vent the discomfort and displeasure inside. The figure hanging in the corner heard the words “months” and gave a weak howl even worse than a sob.
The grey-robed official was naturally Shen Xuan, the person who was in charge of the Great Floating Water Prison.
He looked at Mo Qinggong as though he heard nothing and said, “In the view of the Divinity Bureau, that wine shop youth is not suspicious, but in my view, that is the greatest problem.”
Mo Qinggong’s face turned cold and he said, “What do you mean?”
“When Bureau Chief Ye killed the Zhao rebel, he was present. He helped Wang Taixu establish himself. He reached Profound Understanding in half a day after joining White Goat Cave. Then his cultivation exploded. With three cultivators like this trying to assassinate him, he did not die, and he killed one in a fight. These are all impossible for ordinary people to do.” The grey-robed official looked at Mo Qinggong and said expressionlessly, “Too many coincidences are a problem. Too many impossibilities occurring to the same person is also a problem.”
“Do not say to me that the Divinity Bureau has already investigated, and do not say that Fang Xiumu feels he has no problem.”
He tilted his face down, and gave off a coldness that made even Mo Qinggong’s heart tremble. “All officials have to cooperate with an investigation of the Great Floating Water Prison. You should know that we have many means that you do not have. Only after I have seen and felt he has no problem, then I will feel there are no problems.”
Translator Ramblings: My sleeping schedule is messing up my update schedule.
- Sword Dynasty Volume Five Chapter 40 “City Massacre”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Five Chapter 39 “Present Matters”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Five Chapter 38 “Sorrow”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Five Chapter 37 “Military Assassination”
- Sword Dynasty Volume Five Chapter 36 “Hand Over The Mountain”
- This is a phrase from a poem called “Sending Yuan Er to Xi’an” by Wang Wei in the Tang Dynasty. ↩