Bu Jingyun really was too weak and fragile; just a few claw wounds had caused him to fall unconscious for the greater half of the day.
Although the Sentinel wasn’t very welcoming towards Shi Sheng with his words, he didn’t restrain her actions by much. After all, even if he hadn’t heard their conversation from before, he had seen the Geldcloud Flower.
‘That’s one of the things Hallmaster’s always been looking for. This woman is only harsh with her words…’
The two carried Bu Jingyun out of Sunset Forest at the fastest speed they could. But by the time they’d reached Four-Square City, Bu Jingyun’s wounds had pretty much healed up on their own.
Meanwhile, after the battle for the Rainbow Lotus had ended, the various factions that had left Sunset Forest gathered together to attack Four Square City out of revenge. Fortunately, the defensive formation was strong enough to withstand their attacks, and the enemy was disunified enough that they didn’t manage to inflict any actual damage before dispersing.
The reason behind their disunity was Qin Langyue.
Shi Sheng had forcefully revealed Qin Langyue’s spatial storage bracelet in front of everyone after all.
And as long as it belonged to the female lead, it was guaranteed to be extremely rare. As it turned out, spatial storage devices were very rare in the Nine Provinces; naturally, those people wouldn’t just let it go.
There was already no hope of obtaining the Rainbow Lotus. If they couldn’t even get a spatial storage bracelet out of this trip, it really would have been a waste of their time, now wouldn’t it?
And thus, there was yet another round of fighting over that bracelet.
However, Qin Langyue’s contracted beast had awoken before they had the chance to do anything and brought her, as well as her still stalwart protector Jiang Mu, away.
“Langyue, you need to eat something.” Jiang Mu placed some fruits beside Qin Langyue, his normally frigid expression now containing some hints of concern.
Qin Langyue simply stared into space with empty eyes as she lay on the ground, answering Jiang Mu with a robotic tone, “Not eating.”
“Your body won’t be able to take it.”
Qin Langyue suddenly sat up and roared, “I said I’m not eating! Not eating! Don’t you understand what I’m saying? Get lost! I don’t want to see you!”
Jiang Mu was dazed from being shouted at, and only managed to find his words again after a while, “But—”
“Scram! Get lost!” Qin Langyue pushed Jiang Mu. “Get out! Leave!”
The worry in Jiang Mu’s only eyes deepened, but he still reluctantly left for the sake of not agitating Qin Langyue any further.
Once Jiang Mu had left, Qin Langyue held her face and sobbed.
She had lost her cultivation, and, that, in her mind, was equivalent to being a cripple. This resulted in her emotions becoming much more volatile. Even though she knew Jiang Mu had meant the best for her, she still couldn’t help but take her anger out on him.
“Mistress, there’s still a chance for you to recover your previous strength.” Her contracted beast’s voice slowly sounded in her mind.
Qin Langyue’s head shot up, her bloodshot eyes gleaming with a savage light. “What method?”
She desperately wanted to regain her cultivation and seek revenge against Shen Yaoguang.
Qin Langyue had been an assassin in her previous life, so her mind was far more resilient than others’. But no matter how resilient one was, after they’d experienced such a despairing series of setbacks, they’d become just as fragile as anyone else.
Her contracted beast fell silent for a while. Qin Langyue urged him once more with a dark look in her eyes. “Come on, say it! What method? I don’t want to be a cripple!”
“Do you really want to recover, Mistress? Even if… you’ll lose some things as a result?” Her contracted beast didn’t directly reply and instead asked her a question of his own in a downcast voice.
‘When we formed our contract, she clearly wasn’t this kind of person. The Mistress right now scares me a bit…’
“Yes, I want to recover! No matter what the cost!” Qin Langyue answered immediately, without hesitation. ‘I want revenge against Shen Yaoguang!’
Only after a long while did her contracted beast finally give a reply, “En. I’ll definitely help Mistress recover.”
Qin Langyue was impatient and continued questioning him, but he wouldn’t say anything more, only telling her to rest easy and wait.
That night, Qin Langyue had a dream. In the dream, a small boy looked at her with a sad expression. That desolate gaze of his made her feel very uncomfortable. It felt as if she had let him down somehow.
She was suddenly startled awake from her dream.
Moonlight streamed into the room, causing her to instinctively cover her face with her hands to shield her eyes. But the feeling of rough skin had startled her. Panicked, she ran her hands over her face.
Her formerly smooth skin was gone, now replaced by deep wrinkles.
She lifted her hand. Her once tender fingers were now as dried and withered as a tree branch. Her hand was completely covered in wrinkles so deep they were reminiscent of bark patterns.
‘How could this…? No- no, this must be a dream…’
Qin Langyue desperately comforted herself as she lay back down and closed her eyes again. ‘This has to be a dream. Just a dream…’
A tortured shriek broke the silence of the night, causing Jiang Mu, who had been waiting outside all this time, to immediately enter. “Langyue, what’s wrong?”
Qin Langyue quickly hugged her head as she spoke in a muffled voice, “Don’t come over! Get out! Get out…”
“Langyue.” Jiang Mu was worried and went to hold her, trying to lift her head up. “Langyue, don’t be scared. I’ll protect you from now on. You still have me.”
“No! Go away! Don’t touch me! No…” No one would like her like this. Those that said otherwise were liars.
“Listen to me. I really…” Jiang Mu’s voice suddenly stopped, as his body stiffened. All the while, his incredulous expression was masked by the darkness.
His body started to slowly fall towards the floor. A gurgling sound could be heard coming from his throat, but he didn’t manage to say a word.
Qin Langyue was stunned. Only after a long while did she raise her hands.
‘I… my cultivation has returned? And it seems even more powerful than before!’
“My cultivation’s back! Back! Hahaha! It’s back!” Qin Langyue laughed maniacally, not even sparing a second glance to the slowly dying Jiang Mu.
But soon, Qin Langyue realised that even though her cultivation had returned, her face and hands remained that of an old woman’s.
She scratched furiously at those wrinkles, to the point that she started bleeding. ‘How could this be? My cultivation has already returned, so why is it still like this?!
…That’s right! My contracted beast! He helped me recover my cultivation, so he should know what happened!’
Qin Langyue called out to her contracted beast, but no matter how much she called, no one answered her . She couldn’t even feel the bond between them anymore.
This hadn’t happened even when her contracted beast had fallen into a deep hibernation; she had still been able to feel their bond back then.
Although there were doubts in her heart, they were soon suppressed by a deep hatred.
When Qin Langyue had had sexual intercourse with the Snake King from before, she had gotten pregnant with his child. After her cultivation had been wasted, the child no longer had any spirit energy to sustain itself, so it could only absorb her vitality instead.
Qin Langyue’s contracted beast had gathered all its power to recover her cultivation. However, his power was far too pure for the child to bear, so it frantically absorbed even more of her vitality instead to protect itself as well as to gain the nutrition it needed.
So although Qin Langyue had recovered her cultivation, her looks weren’t able to recover.
Qin Langyue had tried every method she knew, but none allowed her to regain her looks. In the end, she could only resort to covering herself with a black robe that shrouded her from head to toe.
The resulting strange gazes and whispers from those surrounding her aggravated Qin Langyue, there were times when she was extremely tempted to kill them.
Rather than immediately going out to seek her revenge, Qin Langyue instead returned to Nine Provinces Academy to look for Zhong Shiyi.
She wanted to get stronger.
‘If only… If only I could get my hands on the Medicine King’s Furnace.
A pity I never saw that man again after that time at the Shen Clan.
I wonder who he is…’
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