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Chapter 45

The barrier emitted a faint cold light, like a large piece of translucent white jade, casting a layer of deathly cool tones over the entire city.

Meng Jiaqi clenched the hem of her skirt in secret, a chill settling in her heart.

And Ning Ning continued to speak.

“The young city lord must never have thought that, in sacrificing his future and even his life for this city, the few elders he trusted the most would betray him. When the city formation was set up, they might have attacked collectively or perhaps abandoned the formation at the same time—either way, he would quickly realize his situation. So, he chose to give up the formation, staking his lifelong cultivation against Xuan Ye in a desperate battle.”

“So, the elders’ deception of the people in Jialan City this time is not to awaken the young city lord, but…”

Zheng Weiqi took a sharp breath, her volume involuntarily rising. “For Xuan Ye!”

He Zhizhou sighed. “Since the young city lord knew about their treachery and became their enemy, how could those scoundrels help him wake up? When you think about it, he’s really pitiful.”

Indeed, quite pitiful.

Struggling with all his might when awake just to protect the lives of the demon in the city, but getting stabbed in the back by his own people; and even in sleep, he couldn’t escape the fate of being exploited, becoming a puppet in the eyes of the world while all the benefits went to the enemies he opposed.

The poor demons in the city were played like pawns, risking the danger of being discovered by righteous cultivators as they gathered essence outside, only to become unwitting accomplices, making wedding clothes for their enemies.

Meng Jiaqi, after hearing all this, had a face as white as paper and was unable to speak for a while.

Seeing her in such a state, Zheng Weiqi, in a rare moment, softened her tone and said consolingly, “Miss Meng, this matter is of great importance. How about you lead us to find the elders and let us confront them face-to-face? What do you think?”

Meng Jiaqi’s eyes had bloodshot veins surging up; a glimmer of crimson hatred flashed through her eyes as she gritted her teeth and nodded heavily.


The Xingji Pavilion, where the elder was located, was empty.

They were also affected by the spiritual energy during the battle in the past, and with the young city lord likely having targeted them for revenge, according to Meng Jiaqi’s description, they were weakened to a state akin to an elderly person with one foot in the grave. That’s why they set up the formation, attempting to eliminate the Xuanxu sect group’s through an undercover operation rather than a direct confrontation.

Now, probably after getting wind of the information from an unknown source and realizing that their lies had been exposed, they didn’t hesitate to flee.

The Xingji Pavilion retained its architectural style from hundreds of years ago, with wooden windows adorned with dragon and phoenix patterns illuminated by dim red lanterns. The curtains hung low, shrouded in silence.

Curling white smoke wafted up from the incense burner, resembling the delicate boneless hands of a woman, gently brushing over the window sill and the gauzy curtains woven with silver threads. The fragrance was elusive, spreading invisibly with the white vapor to every corner of the room.

Ning Ning had been busy for quite some time and finally managed to sit down and rest. As she leisurely observed the surrounding buildings, she listened to Zheng Weiqi’s question, “Have they already left Jialan City and escaped to the shore?”

Meng Jiaqi shook her head. “Miss, you may not know that entering Jialan City from outside the barrier is easy, but once inside, leaving requires a tremendous amount of spiritual energy. Given their condition, they probably can’t leave this place.”

“So, the most likely place those old men would go,” He Zhizhou became interested, his long sword emitting a hum at his waist, “should be that lair of the so-called Demon Lord—do we have a chance to hunt demons too?”

“At present, we don’t know Xuan Ye’s whereabouts. I will inform the awakened demons in the city of the truth and ask for their help in finding Xuan Ye and the elders.”

Meng Jiaqi sighed, as if she had exhausted all her strength for the day. “Perhaps it’s better for you all to rest in the city for a while and heal your injuries.”

Zheng Weiqi cheerfully agreed, her gaze passing through the window, fixedly staring at the numerous shops along the street. She then took out her notebook to record her inspiration.

Pei Ji frowned as he toyed with the hilt of his sword, seeming a bit impatient, almost as if he wanted to say, Why aren’t we fighting yet?

…I’m talking about you two, hey!

So, the group took a break in the city.

The demons in Jialan City had been in a deep sleep underwater for a hundred years, and upon waking up, they rarely interacted with the outside world. Therefore, each of them was overly simple and honest, as if they had just crossed over from a children’s cartoon.

Ning Ning was led by a few enthusiastic girls to pick out new clothes and then comfortably soak in a hot bath. However, no matter how she thought about it, she still felt troubled.

Ever since coming to this world, she has staunchly believed that everything follows the contents of the book. Unexpectedly, she first encountered such a major accident with He Zhizhou, and now the plot was running out of control, sprinting on a path of collapse.

This was not a very pleasant experience.

Looking at it now, whether to continue trusting the original work and the system in the future was also a big question.

Ning Ning finished her bath and felt bored. Unable to focus due to the swirling thoughts in her mind, she gave up on further contemplation and decided to stroll on the street to clear her mind.

Everyone stayed in guest rooms at the Lord’s mansion, separated by only a wall. As she opened the door, she sensed a gust of sword wind.

It was Pei Ji practicing swordsmanship.

He had changed into new clothes, still as black as the night. The young man, with black attire and hair, exhibited a sword light as pure as snowy waves. Illuminating his well-defined profile, it brightened his pale white skin.

There was no wind around, and only the radiant light from the barrier fell in strands, reminiscent of broken waves and floating flowers. It poured down like moonlight and was broken into scattered points by his sharp, long sword.

Ning Ning thought seriously: perhaps Pei Ji liked to wear black clothes because the richness of black wouldn’t make his blood stains too conspicuous.

Hearing the creaking sound of her room door opening, Pei Ji halted his movements, lowered his head, and turned around.

Ning Ning rarely had direct contact with Pei Ji.

There was always a transparent film between them, polite but somewhat unfamiliar.

Originally, she, holding onto the self-cultivation of a malicious supporting female character, deliberately kept her distance from the male lead. However, now that the system has fooled her several times—

The original work itself had innate deformities and poor development, and it seemed there was no reason to bother with it.

She was about to speak when, unexpectedly, Pei Ji took the initiative, “Senior Sister.”

Ning Ning smiled, and faint dimples appeared on her cheeks. “So late, you’re still practicing swordsmanship?”

Pei Ji: “Mm.”

After saying this, he didn’t know how to continue.

During his childhood, he was kept by his mother in a cellar, almost completely isolated from the outside world. Later, when he grew up and joined the Xuan Xu Sect, he faced discrimination due to his demon bloodline, and the number of people willing to get close to him was scarce, let alone making “friends.”

For Pei Ji, fighting powerful monsters beyond his level in a life-and-death situation was easier than chatting.

He couldn’t help feeling frustrated.

Frustrated with himself.

“Little Pei Ji, don’t give up!”

Cheng Ying screamed in his heart, “Come on, let me give you some advice! Just say that, um, that—Senior Sister, let’s have a sword match!”

This was a sword that was born single.

At its level, it is estimated that it has basically bid farewell to being single.

“Haven’t you gone to heal with Senior Sister Zheng?” Ning Ning asked with curiosity, taking a step closer to him and glimpsing the bloodstains on Pei Ji’s face and neck.

She frowned, unsure of what came to her mind. “It’s strange; why do I always see you covered in injuries whenever I see you?”

—Clearly, in the novel she read, Pei Ji, as the male lead, had a smooth and almost stumble-free journey. However, these few times turned him into a bloodied mess, painfully unbearable to look at.

“Minor injuries, no big deal.”

He answered without hesitation, while Cheng Ying in his mind sighed, “Wrong, wrong! You should make a very uncomfortable expression to gain some of her attention. So stubborn, you might as well stay single forever.”

It became more and more excited, laughing, “Listen to me. You suddenly cover your chest, half kneeling on the ground. Try to squeeze out a few drops of tears, and then your voice must tremble gently. Pitiably tell her: Senior Sister, it hurts. Hehehe! Ning Ning will definitely soften, her eyes reddening, lifting you up and taking you into the room. Then you use some tricks, uh-huh, oh yeah, like that, hehehe!”

Pei Ji:…

“Do you never apply medicine to your injuries when you get hurt?” Ning Ning stood by the door and looked into the room, her fair face tinged with a few strands of crimson from the candlelight. The corners of her slightly raised mouth have dimples like springwater filled with peach blossoms.

Then she turned back, pointing to her right cheek, and said, “You’re bleeding here. I have some ointment in my room; would you like to use it?”

Cheng Ying completely lost its mind, a peak divine sword reduced to a mad and neurotic sword: “Use it, use it, use it! Quickly say you want it! Pei Ji, if you refuse, I will recite the Diamond Sutra and the Great Compassion Mantra for you every night, and every morning I will passionately recite ‘365 Days with Me and sword master Zhen Xiao’ for you!”

Pei Ji, annoyed by its clamor, was about to frown, but seeing the lovely and gentle smile of the young girl under the candlelight, his irritation inexplicably dissipated.





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