An Zheng had applied all the methods that he could think about. What happened next would depend on the two other people. An Zheng was very condident with his strategy. However, one thing he could not identify was Xiao QiDao. If the Illusory academy realized Xiao QiDao’s physical power, he would fail to complete Ye Aunty’s request. Ye Aunty obviously did not want Xiao QiDao to show up in the Yan Kingdom’s army. Otherwise, she would have had not left there herself.
An Zheng asked Du ShouShou and the others to freely play during the day time, which made people who cared about the competition confused but bad people happy because they thought that the martial school would surely win, so people of the martial school acted as if they had already won. Many people had increased their bets on the martial school. The betting pool got bigger and attracted more and more people to join. It was said that the motels nearby were full of guests that were waiting for the competition.
An Zheng sat thoughtlessly next to a small lake. Actually, he worried more than everybody combined. Although he had enough strategy based on which,thatDu ShouShou and Qu Liu’er would win, thus it would have been of great disaster for the martial school if they failed because he was the Dean of the martial school, the future Head of TianQi Sect, in Xiao QiDao’s and the others’ thought.
– “Why are you so worried?”
A bothering sound to An Zheng was made from behind him. There was no need to turn back for An Zheng to know who the person was.
Chen ShaoBai, ghostly appeared with a wine gourd in his hand, sitting opposite of An Zheng,
– “You seem to be not sure, because you are weak in comparison, with the disciples there. I am a little confused why you had agreed to bet while you were not sure at that time? I used to see people who wanted to commit suicide, but I have never seen anyone, who wrote a storyscript leading towards the act of suicide like you.”
An Zheng stared at him,
– “Your mouth is really stinky!”
Chen ShaoBai blew with a wide-opened mouth,
– “Stinky? I see that this is a true description. If not, why don’t you ask for my help? I am not fond of youand I am filled with hatred that I cannot kill you. But I am a disciplined person. You had helped me to kill Chen Pu before. If I have not repaid you for this, I will then have the heart to kill you. If you ask for my help now, I will kill all disciples there. If so, you all will surely win without any competition. Is that not the best result?
– I help you to kill them all, so your ragged martial school will win, and I will also repay all of my gratitude to you.”
Chen ShaoBai laid on the grass,
– “Two birds one stone!”
– “Didn’t you come to a secret sect to practice? Why did you still come to meet me here?”
Chen ShaoBai said,
– “That sect is not urgent, so I can go there anytime that I like. I am just worrying that you will not die by my hands. “
– “You had better get away now.”
– “Is this how you treatyour guests?”
– “I have never invited you to come here.”
Chen ShaoBai stood up,
– “You really don’t want to beg me? It’s good of your bravery, but this is not bravery, it’s foolishness. Let me tell you a thing. The best disciple there is named Chen Zhouwhose real identity is Chen Qi, the son of Chen Pu who had used to serve me. Hehad taken over some men of the Chen family, so it is just childs play, being able to kill you all. But why doesn’t he take his revenge directly to you? Because he wants to dishonor you in front of all the people of the Illusory Academy on the day that you are going to compete.
– Ask for my help!”
– “You only need to ask for my help, and I will kill them all.”
– “From your mouth, I see that it’s easy for you to kill people.”
– “If you practice, but do not kill anyone, it will be boring.”
He gulped some wine,
– “Why is it that I see you are more narrow-minded than those old teachers? You really came from a poor family. You had also used to be bullied, over and over, many times. Why don’t you have a wicked mind? Let me tell you the truth. Such people like you will not have a future. The Underworld is the only way that there is. If you are not wicked, you will soon die.”
– “I’m not without cruelty, but I will not kill you for no reason.”
– “You say as if you had used to kill people. However, it’s up to you. Foolishness is already in your blood, so I cannot help you even I if want to. You are annoying. I’ll give you this…”
Chen ShaoBai took off a bell from his waist and threw it to An Zheng,
– “If you are in great danger, you just need to ring the bell, and I will immediately come to save you. At the moment, I just want to finish up the debt early, and then I will gradually torture you. Strip out your veins and peel off your skin, then throw you into a boiling pot, it’s making me feel really comfortable just thinking of it.”
An Zheng looked at the bell. It was made of green bronze. On its top were ancient hieroglyphics. Although An Zheng had a wide knowledge, he had never seen such hieroglyphs like those. They were logographic scripts, but they looked like random carved prints.
Chen ShaoBai stood up and left,
– “If I were you, I would return the bell.”
The bell hit his back.
Chen ShaoBai was surprised for a while. He turned back and saw An Zheng picking the bell up and putting in his chest,
– “You said that you owed me gradtitude.”
– “You’re barefaced. You are really shameless.”
An Zheng shrugged his shoulders,
– “So is everyone!”
Cheng ShaoBai stared at An Zheng, and then he put on his hat with his coat and left. He did not leave from the main door but jumped from the wall. When he stepped on the wall, there were some small waves that dispersed from the wall. After that, he disappeared. An Zheng took out the bell and looked at it. The more that he looked at the bell, the more mysterious that it became, to his eyes.
“What the sect Chen ShaoBai comes to study really is?” An Zheng used to be the leader of the Tribunal, and the Tribunal had many spies in many places. Based on his way of understanding, the one who best understood the underworld was the Tribunal. However, An Zheng had known that since he was alive, his vision of the world was too limited. After he had been alive, such a small place as the Illusory Perennial Domicile could contain many things which he could not understand.
Chen ShaoBai looked very confident as if he could really kill any disciples of the Illusory academy. If so, why didn’t he go kill Chen Qi himself?
If he had known Chen Qi like the back of his hands, why did he let Chen Pu steal everything from him?
An Zheng did not understand because this matter was not of common sense. Maybe this matter was related to the secret sect.
An Zheng stood up and touched the key on his neck. He unconsciously wanted to go into the Repugnant seal to refine his body. When he had walked some steps, he realized that it was not night time. His only hope was to base his practice on body refining to win over his rivals. However, he clearly knew how much hatred Chen Qi had for him. When the fight came, Chen Qi would surely use all means possible to fight with him.
When An Zheng was thinking, old Huo came out from the room.
– “What’s wrong?”
An Zheng asked.
Old Huo did not say anything. He meant to ask An Zheng to return to his room. In the room, old Huo said,
– “Have you just met someone recently?”
– “Haven’t you seen?”
– “I have seen nothing but you were mumbling.”
An Zheng’s mind was down. After that, he told the story. After hearing this, old Huo knitted his brows,
– “Show me the bell.”
An Zheng gave the bell to old Huo. Old Huo watched the bell carefully for a while,
– “It is a dark weapon…”
– “Dark weapon?”
An Zheng looked at old Huo doubtfully.
Old Huo put the bell on the table.
– “You cannot feel it and even a great practitioner will have difficulties in trying to feel it. It is because your sense of air is many times far behind us. We are weapon refiners, so we are very sensitive with any changes. An Zheng, you should know that this world does not contain only the Star Goods Watchtower which does weapon refining. There are still wicked people hiding under the shadows and using the dark methods to increase the power of their items.
– The items made by the right way are called magical weapons. Those which are created by the heresy are called dark weapons. This bell is a dark weapon.”
An Zheng obviously did not understand much about weapon refining. When he was in the Tribunal, he had never heard about such heresy. In An Zheng’mind, the so called “Dark” was just the baddies. However, from the fear in old Huo’s eyes, a master in weapon refining who feared a small bell, An Zheng felt that this matter beyond common sense.
Old Huo looked at the bell, thought for a while, and said,
– “Finally, good luck is not bad, and bad luck is hard to avoid. An Zheng, your fate is quite strange. When you came to the Blue Boorish Mountain, you found out the senior magical weapon and the hundreds herbal farm. It is very lucky of you. Now in your hand is a dark weapon. I don’t also know if this is your good or bad luck. Such luck like this is not normal. Have you ever suffered from any big matters from which your fate has been changed?”
An Zheng smiled and said,
– “What big matters have I ever suffered from? I am only an orphan in the Illusory Perennial Domicile.”
Old Huo said yes shortly thereafter,
– “In summary, this is not normal. You should be careful then. It’s possible for you to meet similar things. Although it seems lucky, it is not surely good. I have told you that the god’s favored you. However, if too much favor comes to a person, it is not really god’s favor. Good luck does not come many times. When your good luck is at its peak, it’s time for bad luck. To tell you the truth, I was just favored by the gods once during my entire life. It was the time I had found the meteorite and made the blockhouse. But what is my result now?”
An Zheng said,
– “I will be careful. Thank you, senior Huo.”
Old Huo shook his head,
– “You still don’t understand. Fate is something very fearsome. Because you don’t refine weapon, you don’t have much cares about it… no, no.”
He went out shakily, leaving a lonely sight.
An Zheng looked at the bronze bell on the table and thought to himself: “Is it really ghostly like that? The dark weapons, the heresy, what are they really?”
After old Huo had left, An Zheng looked at the bell stupidly. The bell was really so normal. Maybe it was just used to do nothing but communicate.
It was night time, and An Zheng took Du ShouShou and the others to the Repugnant seal in order to refine their bodies. The key of the Repugnant seal was on An Zheng’s neck, so An Zheng could freely take anyone in it without going to the Nine Stars dais. Otherwise, outsiders would know the secret of the Nine Stars dais. A senior magical weapon was enough for people to abandon their bets and directly came to take over the treasure.
Inside the Repugnant seal, the children practiced very hard. They practiced continuously. When they felt tired, they stopped for a while, and then kept practicing.
An Zheng tried to increase his speed and flexibility when fighting. This was his only method of winning which he could think of. If An Zheng had to face Chen Qi, he might be at risk. Chen Qi was the evilest boy whom An Zheng had ever met. He was even eviler than Chen ShaoBai. Chen ShaoBai’s characteristic was somehow purer, more or less, but Chen Qi just had conspiracies over conspiracies.
Since An Zheng’s men did not want to be discovered, they practiced for a while and went to bed. After that, they kept playing during the day time. No one knew if there were any tartars breaking into the martial school. If they did not see anyone, they would have doubts.
Time flew, and with one more day, came the competition. Tomorrow when the sun shined, it was the time to duel. The night before, the main street was full of people. They brought pillows and blankets with them and slept on the main street. Many people had made bets with a great amount of money. The effects were far beyond the meanings of the competition.
That night, An Zheng had stayed up all night.
He looked at the moon in the sky and clenched his fists tightly.