What's wrong with a snake that just wants to cultivate and transform?

What’s wrong with a snake that just wants to cultivate and transform? By Mar 14, 2024 2 Comments
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Previous: Chapter 57

Chapter 58

In the blink of an eye, two days had passed, and Ji Yuebai unsurprisingly emerged as the champion of the competition once again.

Following her were Song Lingxiao from Wuji Sect in second place, Mu Yushan from Taiyi Sect in third, and Mu Zi from Fanyin Pavilion in fourth.

The overall ranking between the sects didn’t offer much excitement. The top four sects maintained their positions, while minor changes occurred in the rankings of the lower four. These shifts were insignificant in the grand scheme and echoed the trends of previous years.

Once the rankings were settled, only the showcase matches between the sects remained, allowing the tightly wound nerves of the disciples to relax.

That evening marked the start of the auction, jointly hosted by Tianbao Pavilion and the Eight Great Sects.

This timing was chosen mainly to provide some leisure and entertainment for the cultivators after four days of intense competition. Moreover, after such fierce battles, people tend to be more impulsive and willing to spend more.

For this reason, Mu Yanyu had eagerly sought out Xu Nian early to “divide the spoils.”

They had earned eight hundred and sixty thousand spirit stones in the first two days of betting. The business at her betting pool had only heated up in the last two days, bringing in an additional one million two hundred thousand spirit stones. After deducting the necessary fees and costs, the total earnings amounted to one million eight hundred thousand spirit stones, with Xu Nian and Mu Yanyu each receiving nine hundred thousand.

When Xu Nian received the storage bag filled with spirit stones from Mu Yanyu, her hands trembled with excitement.

In just four days, nine hundred thousand spirit stones – she had struck it rich. With her current rate of spirit stone consumption, this amount was sufficient for ten years of cultivation.

Xu Nian, having received the spirit stones, looked at Mu Yanyu somewhat sheepishly, “You’ve been the one busy these past few days. I feel quite ashamed to receive so many spirit stones without having done much.”

Mu Yanyu chuckled at her words, “Spirit stones are easy to earn, but people’s hearts are not. Actually, I enjoy the process of earning spirit stones more. Besides, you’ve played a more important role than you think. Don’t worry about it, just accept them. I read in the library that most demon beasts are excessively greedy, but you, as a demon beast, are nothing like what’s described in the books.”

Xu Nian smiled back, “That’s because I was originally human. I just happened to be reborn into the body of a demon beast.”

Mu Yanyu, of course, didn’t believe her, “You really have a sense of humor.”

After agreeing on a time to meet again, they parted ways for the time being, and Xu Nian returned to her residence to change clothes and prepare.

When Xu Nian got back, Ji Yuebai was already waiting at the table, unclear how long she had been there.

Ji Yuebai sat with a scroll laid out in front of her, focused, with her fingers idly resting on her forehead. Her white Daoist robe was casually draped over her shoulders, her dark hair flowing down. The murderous aura from her previous battles had completely dissipated, leaving her with a leisurely and relaxed charm.

Xu Nian hurried over to apologize, “Yuebai, I’m sorry for putting you in a difficult position.”

Ji Yuebai’s gaze fell on her face, her expression puzzled, “Why are you apologizing?”

It was, of course, because of that transformation fruit. Xu Nian felt guilty for making Ji Yuebai lower her status and face criticism to participate in the disciple competition for her sake. Although Ji Yuebai had won easily, participating in a competition meant for lesser disciples was somewhat damaging to her reputation, given her strength and status.

Xu Nian hung her head low, sharing her thoughts in detail with Ji Yuebai. She admitted that she hadn’t expected her transformation to go so smoothly and had unnecessarily caused anxiety about the need for the fruit.

Moreover, Xu Nian could sense that Ji Yuebai’s mood had soured towards the end of the competition, which only added to her guilt.

Xu Nian understood that, unlike her, who would bully the weak if she could, and resort to underhanded tactics rather than a fair fight, a powerhouse like Ji Yuebai wouldn’t stoop to bullying weaker opponents. After all, under the scrutiny of all, it would be beneath her dignity and value.

The more Xu Nian spoke, the more ashamed she felt, her head almost drooping to her feet by the end.

Before she could finish, Ji Yuebai walked over from the table, reaching out to lift her head up.

Overwhelmed by guilt, Xu Nian didn’t know how to face Ji Yuebai. As she straightened up under Ji Yuebai’s gentle guidance, she inadvertently leaned forward into Ji Yuebai’s soft embrace, her hands instinctively grasping Ji Yuebai’s waist.

Her breath hitched, body tensing. She had often sought comfort in Ji Yuebai’s arms, but never from such an awkward angle.

She quickly lifted her head from Ji Yuebai’s embrace, trying to explain herself, only to see Ji Yuebai turning her head away, avoiding her gaze. Her voice cool, “It’s fine, I have never blamed you for this.”

Xu Nian paused, sensing something different in Ji Yuebai’s demeanor and tone, though she couldn’t pinpoint exactly what.

Ji Yuebai’s voice softened slightly, seemingly to reassure her, “When I brought you to Tian Yuan Sect, I promised to protect you and help you with your transformation…”

The warmth near her ear subsided as Ji Yuebai’s gaze fell on Xu Nian’s bewitching yet innocent eyes, fluttering like delicate butterfly wings. In that moment, Ji Yuebai felt her own heart flutter.

Initially, it was all about repaying a debt of gratitude. A life-saving favor held deep significance, especially on the long path of cultivation, where emotional entanglements could lead to complications.

Yet, she hadn’t anticipated that over time, this gratitude would morph into something else. Unknowingly, her fragmented dreams were now filled with Xu Nian’s presence.

Despite Ji Yuebai’s words, Xu Nian still felt guilty. She couldn’t enact those ancient dramas of repaying a great debt with a promise of lifelong devotion.

After all, she was just a dirty demon beast, unworthy of someone as noble as Ji Yuebai.

Xu Nian affectionately wrapped her arms around Ji Yuebai’s arm, gently nuzzling against her, “As long as you don’t despise me, that’s enough.”

Ji Yuebai stroked her head, “Weren’t you interested in becoming a sword cultivator? There are several fine swords in the prize pool of this competition. Which one do you like?”

She handed over the scroll spread out on the table to Xu Nian.

Hearing this, Xu Nian immediately looked up, her eyes sparkling with excitement, “Can a demon beast learn swordsmanship?”

She had always admired sword cultivators for their elegance and power. Deep down, she aspired to be one, but she feared wasting Ji Yuebai’s time due to a lack of talent. Moreover, keeping up with Ji Yuebai’s cultivation progress and practicing the white lotus flying artifact had left her little time to contemplate becoming a sword cultivator.

Little did she expect that Ji Yuebai would remember her casual mention of this wish.

Ji Yuebai thoughtfully said, “The cultivation methods for demon beasts and humans have some differences, but it’s still possible for you to become a sword cultivator. If you don’t mind that I haven’t reached the Nascent Soul stage, I can guide you in getting started…”

To Xu Nian, Ji Yuebai was an established sword cultivation expert, and she had no reason to refuse such an offer. After all, the Golden Core Elder from Taiyi Sect had even stated that Ji Yuebai’s sword cultivation skills were comparable to, if not surpassing, those of a Nascent Soul cultivator.

Ji Yuebai was being overly modest. With her level of skill and knowledge, guiding Xu Nian, the novice demon beast in cultivation, would be more than adequate.

Xu Nian was so excited that she almost jumped for joy. She wrapped her arms around Ji Yuebai’s neck and planted a kiss on her cheek, “Thank you, Yuebai.”

The soft touch of her lips on Ji Yuebai’s cheek seemed to make Ji Yuebai’s heart skip a beat.

Watching Xu Nian spin around the room in excitement, a smile involuntarily curled on Ji Yuebai’s lips.

After a while, Ji Yuebai stood up, “Tonight, the Elders and core disciples of each sect are meeting at the main island of Fanyin Pavilion for discussions. I will be back late.”

Xu Nian, holding the scroll and contemplating which sword to choose, got up to see her off with due diligence.

After watching Ji Yuebai leave, Xu Nian realized it was time to meet with Mu Yanyu.

She carefully rolled up the scroll and put it into her storage bag, planning to make her choice after returning from the auction.

The auction hosted by Tianbao Pavilion and the Eight Great Sects was different from the disciple competition. While the competition was held every three years, the auction was a once-in-twelve-years event. Therefore, besides the sect disciples, many external cultivators also participated.

This auction was essentially a warm-up, featuring the sale of rare elixirs and magical treasures, requiring entrants to possess an asset proof of two hundred thousand spirit stones issued by Fanyin Pavilion. The main auction, happening two days after the showcase matches, was the main event, auctioning off rare heavenly and earthly treasures. This event required cultivators to have an asset proof of two million spirit stones for entry.

After hearing Mu Yanyu’s explanation, Xu Nian couldn’t help but swallow hard. She had thought herself quite wealthy, but she realized there were far richer people out there.

Xu Nian followed Mu Yanyu into the auction, purchasing two masks for twenty spirit stones at the entrance. The moment they put them on, their faces and auras were completely concealed.

When Xu Nian looked at Mu Yanyu again, she found her presence unfamiliar and her appearance indistinct, as if she had become a completely different person.

Seeing Xu Nian’s puzzled look, Mu Yanyu whispered, “This is called a ‘Fresh Start’ mask. It’s a one-time use talisman for concealing one’s identity…”

As Mu Yanyu explained, Xu Nian understood that this was to prevent being targeted for robbery after leaving the auction, having just acquired valuable items. It was a precaution against those who might be lurking to kill and steal.

Besides these masks, the venue also offered private booths for a thousand spirit stones each, equipped with their own concealment formations for increased privacy. However, both Xu Nian and Mu Yanyu, being somewhat thrifty, decided against it, opting for a more secluded corner in the main hall.

Fortunately, the overall design of the venue was very thoughtful. To better protect the privacy of the guests, the seating area was relatively dimly lit, while the auction stage was illuminated with soft, bright lights for a better display of the auction items.

Xu Nian and Mu Yanyu arrived early and took their seats. After a while, the surrounding seats gradually filled up with people.

Mu Yanyu pulled out the auction catalog and began discussing it with Xu Nian. This time, Mu Yanyu was mainly interested in bidding for a “Youth-Preserving Pill” made from the Transformation Fruit, with a starting bid of one hundred thousand spirit stones. Based on past experience, the final bid was estimated to be around eight hundred thousand spirit stones.

Mu Yanyu had started her cultivation journey relatively late, and her current tenth level Qi-Training Stage was achieved with the help of pills. She estimated that it would take her at least five years to stabilize her cultivation and reach the Foundation Establishment stage. The journey from Foundation Establishment to Golden Core would also require a long time, and during this period, her age and appearance would gradually change. The aging process would only slow down significantly upon reaching the Golden Core stage.

Always conscious about her appearance, Mu Yanyu would have accepted aging as a natural part of life if she had remained a regular human. However, the prospect of facing her own aging in the long lifespan of a cultivator was something she couldn’t come to terms with. This concern was something she had always held inside and had never mentioned to Xu Nian.

Moreover, the Youth-Prese rving Pill couldn’t reverse aging but only maintained the user’s appearance at the time of consumption.

In other words, waiting until she looked like she was in her forties or fifties to use it would be too late.

Mu Yanyu’s main reason for braving the risks of traveling to Fanyin Pavilion, despite her low cultivation level, was the rumor that the auction would feature the priceless Youth-Preserving Pill.

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Previous: Chapter 57


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4 months ago

Thanks for the chapter..

12 days ago

Auction time 🤭 I wonder if yuebai is there as well