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Chapter 137

The boy greeted her with a grin, and the unfamiliar young man in the wheelchair nodded and smiled warmly, “Xiao Yan.”

“Are you out for a walk?”

Due to the recent upheavals in the clan, Qiao Yan had forced herself to develop a straightforward, decisive nature. Yet, now she displayed rare hesitation, her voice awkward and stiff: “Are you feeling better?”

The young man kept his smile and said, “Yes. I heard you were very busy today. Make sure to rest well.”

Qiao Yan responded with a quiet “Oh” and listened as he continued, “Seeing that you all seem in a hurry, I won’t disturb you any longer. I’ll take my leave.”

He finished speaking smoothly, and Qiao Yan nodded, but her previously upright ears drooped down.

“Oh, I understand.”

As the two of them gradually moved out of sight, He Zhizhou suddenly realized and dragged out his words: “That’s the boy you like, isn’t it?”

Qiao Yan’s face flushed instantly. She turned her back to him, then leaned against the railing, resting her chin in her hand, and replied after a while, “Yes.”

“You two grew up together in the Fox clan, so you must be childhood sweethearts, right?” Curious baby Xu Ye chimed in, “Why does it feel like you both look so distant?”

“I like him, but he’s not interested in me.”

Qiao Yan propped her head up with her hand, looking at the sky, which was as clear and blue as a mirror. Her eyes were dark and somber, like a deep, suffocating swamp. “Especially after the great battle… He used to talk to me gently, but after the battle, he deliberately distanced himself, becoming much colder. Sometimes, even when we meet, we don’t say a word, just like strangers.”

Ning Ning is familiar with various heartbreaking masterpieces from ancient and modern times, both in China and abroad. She drinks one bowl after another of dog blood, only feeling that the plot sounds particularly familiar. She comforts her gently:

“Maybe he doesn’t dislike you. Perhaps he lost all his spiritual energy and can barely walk, so he doesn’t want to burden you. He might be distancing himself to save you from spending too much time and effort on him, so that when the time comes to part, it won’t be as painful.”

(T/N:dog blood means something is melodramatic and overexaggerated.)

“I don’t want that kind of ‘intention.'”

Qiao Yan choked up, stroking a string of green tassels on her wrist. She forced herself to continue, “Mother always wants to decide things for me, but I don’t want that at all. They always think it’s for my own good, but I’m not afraid of dying.”

For a moment, no one spoke.

The five young people, each lost in their own thoughts, stood together on the veranda, watching the sunset fade into the distant mountains, its orange glow swallowed by the twilight.

The silence was profound until He Zhizhou softly broke it, trying awkwardly to change the subject and comfort her. “Qiao Yan, is that the Thousand Silk Tassel on your wrist? It’s very pretty.”

She had once mentioned giving a similar one to the boy she liked, but he had been careless and lost it.

Xu Ye finally found something to contribute and earnestly said, “I know about this! I once bought a box of lip balm for my senior sister. She accepted it but seemed to dislike it and never used it.”

He laughed softly, his ears turning a light shade of red. “But once, when I went to her room, I saw that the box was carefully placed on her desk, where she could see it every day when she returned. So don’t be too sad. He might be hiding it and looking at it from time to time.”

Xu Ye couldn’t continue, covering his face and lowering his head with a broad smile. His face flushed red.

Surprisingly, the one who reacted most was not Qiao Yan but Pei Ji, who pursed his lips uneasily, his expression becoming more shadowed as he lowered his head without saying a word.

Ning Ning, oblivious to Pei Ji’s reaction, followed Qiao Yan to the railing, resting her chin in her hand as she asked, “Qiao Yan, what do you plan to do when the secret realm opens?”

Qiao Yan was silent for a long time before she finally shook her head.

After a long and tiring day, everyone agreed to search for the whereabouts of the Sun Blaze Bow together the next day. For now, they decided to rest and regain their strength.

Ning Ning, however, couldn’t shake off a strange feeling. Unable to stay idle in the house, she stepped outside to get some fresh air.

The entire secret realm was shrouded in a faint blood-red hue at dusk, with the weather as unpredictable as a fickle scumbag. The day’s heat lingered, leaving the leaves and grass wilted and wrinkled, like frail, elderly patients drained of energy.

The only slightly cooler place was under the waterfall.

Ning Ning intended to go there to cool off.

Unexpectedly, as soon as she reached the pool, she was caught off guard by a familiar figure.

Pei Ji, dressed in black, stood in front of the waterfall. The mist created a fine white net around him, enveloping his entire form.

From a distance, she could only make out his blurry features and the tall, dark silhouette of his body. His legs were so long that a single split could practically slice off the top of her head.

The water reflected the blood-red sky, and upon closer inspection, she noticed wisps of black smoke seeping from behind him. They twisted and coiled like serpents or vines, eerie and silent. Just looking at him from afar made her heart race involuntarily.

Right, the original story had briefly mentioned this scene: Pei Ji’s demonic energy flared up in the secret realm, so he immersed himself in the water, trying to use its coolness to alleviate the burning demonic energy.


The passage was written in a rather mundane manner. Before Ning Ning could recall what happened next, she suddenly heard a familiar sound in her mind.

So familiar, so charming, like the Lord of Hell seducing her soul in the middle of the night.

[Ding, task issued!]

[As you explored the secret realm, you unexpectedly found your arch-enemy Pei Ji in the water! Pei Ji is overwhelmed by demonic energy, likely disoriented, and extremely weak. Remembering the suffering he caused you, you are determined to seek revenge.

You planned to launch a surprise attack but then had a better idea, recalling the elders outside the Mystic Mirror—

If all the elders saw him lose control and attack his fellow disciples, it would certainly make for a great show.]

[According to the original storyline, you need to enter the pool, approach Pei Ji, disturb his mind, and lead him into madness.]

“Wait, hold on!”

Ning Ning glanced at the slender silhouette of the boy in the mist and asked urgently, “Now?!”

This tactic would harm herself more than it would hurt him—definitely not worth it!

Given their relationship, she couldn’t bring herself to truly harm him. If Pei Ji lost control, what the elders would witness wouldn’t be “a demonic energy-possessed boy injuring his fellow disciple,” but rather “a young girl meeting a tragic end, exploding into a blood mist before the waterfall.”

The system responded without hesitation: [Yes, now. Immediately.]

Ning Ning: Ha.

You pesky soybean grinder, shut up.



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