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Chapter 9: Who Is Undefeated
The night was as quiet as water. Gradually, the sun started to appear on the horizon.
All of Changling was silent. Mo Shoucheng, sitting on the rattan chair with a thin blanket, seemed to be asleep. But when footsteps sounded behind him, he slowly opened his eyes.
The stern general who had left with his orders appeared behind him with an ugly expression. He bowed and said in a cold voice, “Bai Shanshui fled, and Shen Xuan captured that unknown cultivator alive.”
Mo Shoucheng stilled slightly. Surprise appeared in his yellowed eyes as he said to himself, “Still managed to get away?”
The stern general took a deep breath, and nodded, controlling his emotions. He said, “Bureau Chief Huang sent a message. The Min Mountain Sword Trials have finished. The winner is Xue Wangxu’s student Ding Ning.”
Mo Shoucheng stilled again.
The stern general said nothing else and left after a bow.
Mo Shoucheng bowed his head and thought for a moment. The morning breeze brushed past his root-like hair. He had an emotional expression.
While the identity of that nameless but powerful young cultivator was worth being researched, he knew that the empress had made such major moves last night for the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard. She wanted to keep Bai Shanshui but now had this nameless youth instead… While he had not seen with his own eyes, he could imagine what could have caused such a situation.
Not alone, but in pairs, that wineshop youth won the Min Mountain Sword Trials. The empress, thus far undefeated before, was delivered two defeats in one night.
Thinking back to the perfect coldness of that sword essence, and how Bai Shanshui and that wineshop youth had won, this old city guardian sighed again. He lamented the empress’ defeat during the night. It was coldness losing to burning emotion.
In Min Mountain, the sun was also starting to rise. Yet, as the sky slowly lit up, the tallest mountain peak that appeared to stab a hole in the sky started to fade from the sight of everyone outside the mountain.
At the tallest precipice of the peak, Baili Suxue stood silently like an even colder precipice.
Jin Liuli watched Baili Suxue who was looking coldly in the direction of Changling. She finally could not help but speak.
“Changling shook. Starfire fell.”
Baili Suxue raised his head and said with slight disdain, “Only the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard could have caused Zheng Xiu to act like this.”
Jin Liuli’s expression immediately turned slightly cold. She was silent for a moment before she narrowed her eyes and said, “The emperor is already realm eight. If Zheng Xiu receives the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard, we will face the problems that Ba Mountain Sword Field once did.”
Baili Suxue shook his head and sneered. “Today is not like the past. It is not so easy. In the past, Zheng Xiu and Yuanwu had to work together to defeat their greatest enemy. Now, their greatest enemy is each other. People like them love themselves the most in the world. Their feelings towards others are not as strong as towards themselves. They mostly just had a connection of self-interest. Do not believe that the two were one and extremely close. The Qin has two ministers, thirteen marquises, and those two bureau chiefs. They could be said to have numerous experts. But during the Deer Mountain Conference and tonight, how many were present and participated? Donghu, Yuezhi, Eastern Qiang. While they call themselves subordinate countries and appear harmonious, why do we need to station three armies and three marquises there? When have the areas beyond the east of the Liao River, and behind the Yin Mountains ever been at peace?”
After a pause, Baili Suxue looked at Jin Liuli who was deep in thought. He continued, “Does Yuanwu dare to put less realm sevens around the Chu and Qi borders?”
Jin Liuli frowned as she thought and nodded.
“In the past, Yuanwu and Zheng Xiu feared their life and death would be in someone else’s hands. They spared no cost. Is not the Deer Mountain Conference’s glory Yuanwu’s individual glory? If not for Yuanwu as realm eight, would the Qin have gained any benefit at the Deer Mountain Conference?”
Baili Suxue said with great disdain, “This great drama appeared lively and glorious, but if one thinks carefully, is this glorious as in the past when Ba Mountain Sword Field was in a league of their own? In the past, regardless of how many people like Bai Shanshui came, who dared to enter Changling?”
Jin Liuli’s brows slowly relaxed.
At this time, Baili Suxue added coldly. “Even if Zheng Xiu comprehended the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard, she may not, but so what?”
Jin Liuli looked up in shock. Baili Suxue’s previous words were not hard to understand but she found this hard to understand.
“The Min Mountain Sword Sect does not have just you, also Ding Ning,” Baili Suxue glanced at her and then said with slight displeasure.
Jin Liuli stilled slightly. She immediately understood her master’s meaning. She felt no fear or anxiousness, nodding and saying, “Yes.”
The conversation between the present master of Min Mountain Sword Sect and the next master finished now. Jin Liuli turned around, but as she moved, she turned and said to Baili Suxue, “Master, you really think that person’s heir is nonsense?”
This was a question the two of them had clearly discussed before. Baili Suxue’s eyebrows rose and a frosty expression appeared. He said, “I saw that person’s death with my own eyes. Would there be a problem? The Nine Death Silkworm is so profound. Even if one teaches it hand by hand, a person may not be able to comprehend and cultivate it. How can someone learn it without a teacher, and cultivate the Nine Death Silkworm to such a level?”
Jin Liuli sensed the great displeasure from Baili Suxue, and bowed slightly in apology.
Baili Suxue’s expression calmed, and he said softly in disdain, “There are no ghosts in the world. People will only have ghosts if there are ghosts in their mind. Zheng Xiu and Yuanwu did so many things. It is normal for them to fear certain things happening.”
Jin Liuli did not speak more. The last doubts disappeared after her master’s confident words. Her steps sped up as she left.
The sunlight suddenly appeared, the golden color painting the mountains and edging her in gold.
Baili Suxue did not look back and looked up into the golden light. He gazed at Changling and laughed scornfully. “You are said to be undefeated, but only because the strongest person was always by your side before, and the opponents you encountered later were not qualified or strong enough. Even the person who is most unlikely to be defeated was defeated, who will be undefeatable”
The calm Wei River flashed with light under the sunlight.
A white figure slowly rose from under the water, and was washed to the roots of the willow trees by the shore by the gentle waves. The figure was gradually tangled up by the seagrasses and willow roots as though it would absorb nutrients from them and merge into one.
The heat of the sunlight caused the white figure to move slightly.
Bai Shanshui woke up.
She saw her situation. Through the corner of her eyes, she could even see the merchant ships and Qin metal armored ships in the distance.
Her cultivation was high, but she still felt weak right now. Her body was terrifyingly empty of vital energy. Her skin was as pale as a floating corpse.
Yet, she did not move at all. She lay on the waters and looked up at the sky through the roots.
The sky was still that sky. But many things had changed.
Li Yunrui originally should have killed her, but rescued her in the end. Even more importantly, she knew Li Yunrui would not die.
If he died, it would be good.
But Changling had the terrifying Great Floating Water Prison for cultivators. Li Yunrui had landed in the hands of Great Floating Water Prison’s master, Shen Xuan.
Last night, she had won against Zheng Xiu. She had successfully fled Changling with the Lonely Mountain Sword Hoard and made sure she could survive.
And yet, unlike Baili Suxue, she felt no joy.
Translator Ramblings: We get more backstory. It’s a biased viewpoint but everyone in the story is biased.