Chapter 49: Asura Grounds (1) XTB's Thoughts


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Chapter 49: Asura Grounds (1)

Regret spread in Chu Tianyi’s heart like a tide. He finally knew that while Xu Yangyi was aware that he couldn’t do anything against him now, Xu Yangyi could frighten him into a cold sweat! This was Xu Yangyi’s deliberate display of strength!

Yes, I can’t act now, but that doesn’t mean I won’t be able to later! I may not be able to tally this debt for the time being, but sooner or later, there’ll be a time of my reckoning! 

The repentance within his heart wasn’t so much because he had provoked Xu Yangyi, but rather because of the Bountiful Treasures Pavilion’s business! Not even mentioning unfinished business, the Bountiful Treasures Pavilion would still sever business dealings! A half a year… The financial loss would be over a hundred million, at the minimum! 

How could his heart not ache? How could it not drip with blood? He might as well go ahead and spill out everything! At the very least, he could still make a retort. Such hesitation and pause really could kill someone! 

Furthermore, it didn’t need to be said… but if some old berserk monsters caught wind of this matter, never mind him, what about his family members? 

As Chu Tianyi thought of this, he steeled himself! There were still many fugitives that didn’t fear the pursuit of the Cultivation Court! He clenched his hand even tighter, and his fingernails dug into his flesh. His heart ached numbly in pain, as if it was being bitten over and over again by a legion of ants. 

“Our Featherwood Guard will also investigate this at once! Moreover, we’ll give Fellow Daoist an answer as soon as possible!” Hibiscus cupped her hands and said, “In case it’s discovered, headquarters will stop providing the offender’s registered cultivators with missions!” 

“Our CSIB will reject all the offender’s requests for half a year!”

Chu Tianyi’s throat was aching. He knew that these people had roughly guessed who it was. However… how could they care about another’s insignificant matter? 

No one was mentioned by name, and he himself couldn’t suddenly appear. Right now, these people were clearly playing the fool and making all kinds of promises! Moreover, he was without the least bit doubt that they would truly follow through with their promises! 

Damn it… Goddamn it!

“Many thanks for every seniors deep consideration. I will give an answer for everyone tomorrow.” Xu Yangyi finished speaking and said no more. He exhausted all of his strength to press down on the bullet in his chest, but the bullet wouldn’t come out as if it had taken root. 

This feeling of no qi in his body was too difficult to bear. 

At last, his words brought a temporary reprieve to his recruitment. Regardless of how unwilling everyone was, they couldn’t not give him this face, this esteem. 

They couldn't be rude to such a hot commodity. Merely, everyone present knew that tomorrow’s price would surely be much higher than today’s!

“The great gate of Core Formation…” A youth of the talisman-specialized Wang Clan looked up towards the sky and sighed, sitting down in his seat. He appeared fairly despondent because of his steep disappointment. “A million cultivators replacing one another as the first falls and the second follows in this struggle for the Grand Dao, all to steal this shred of an opportunity…” 

“This entrance has opened up by a crack now… It's dangled in front of me, but it still doesn’t belong to us…”

“A single Xu Yangyi is already tempting, as is the exquisiteness of Daomaster Floatingcloud’s chess move, yet I didn’t expect… that in the end, the matter would still be left undetermined…” A clan master said quietly, “Tomorrow… what price will the other clans take out?”

Moonchaser’s complexion was awfully ashen. 

Xu Yangyi’s words… Ultimately, it was Daomaster Floatingcloud who had supplied the arcane effort, but Xu Yangyi had unexpectedly not chosen Daomaster Floatingcloud! He was a Core Formation Dao Master! A figure at the world’s apex!

Where was the problem? Moonchaser puzzled over this matter a hundred times but was still left without explanation. He turned around and sighed deeply. His face calm, he said to his assistant, “Did you ask Heavens Law whether or not young friend Xu had any other requests when he was studying at the academy? Or perhaps interests?”

“Your Excellency…” Dressed in a well-tailored suit, his assistant was somewhat embarrassed. “I don’t know what’s going on… I wasn’t able contact upstairs just now. It seems there’s some issue with the signal.” 

“This is understandable.” Firecloud overheard their conversation and laughed. “The arena opens only once every five years, so there are too many troubles with the Unrivaled Beneath the Heavens’s comm-circuit installation. The Fengyi City branch isn’t the Shanghai branch, anyways. Where’s all the maintenance money going to come from? Besides…” He picked up his cell phone and shook it. “I can’t get a connection upstairs, either. What’s the worry?” 

Moonchaser snorted but didn’t say anything. 

“Something hasn’t happened upstairs, right?” Shadowslay slightly furrowed his brows. 

Firecloud looked at Shadowslay like he was crazy, and eventually nodded. “Should be. For example a big explosion or something, hehe…” 

They laughed casually, their moods not too stifled. After all, at this kind of time, they had already been obviously knocked out of the running. It went without saying that watching the excitement of the object they were unable to obtain would be better. 

Besides the personnel of the Big Three in the VIP section that were still busying themselves, there were still two people without even the shred of a smile. 

There wasn’t a trace of an emotion on Chu Tianyi’s face until a voice came from his side. “Mr. Chu, you’ve gone and prepared wedding clothes for someone else.” [1]

“Qi Mingyang…” Chu Tianyi didn’t look at Deputy Branchmaster Qi at his side and said calmly, “If I hand the Immortal Intoxication to you right now, what would be the result?”

“I dare not lay my hands on it.” Deputy Branchmaster Qi said with trepidation in his heart. “In any case, this is a Heavens Law branch. Of course, I wouldn’t know about what you do, but the nature of the matter is completely different if I put my hands to it. However…” 

“Rather than worry about me, wouldn’t it be better to concern yourself with the Chu Clan?” He laughed grimly and set down his teacup. He watched the wooden-faced Chu Tianyi continue to stare straight ahead at the arena. “This kid’s talent could be rated as fiendish. Now that he has obtained the assistance of a Core Formation arcane effort… Among the 20,000 Foundation Establishment cultivators, I’m afraid that his name will be on that list in a few decades, hehe… Mr. Chu, I don’t think he’s the type of man to take things lying down.”

Chu Tianyi was silent for a long period of time and said calmly, “A true supreme-grade spirit stone to make him disappear.” 

“It’s not enough…” Qi Mingyang said heavily, “There’s a risk to his price now; it’s insufficient.” 

“State your demands.” Chu Tianyi held his teacup and pursed his lips. “I don’t want to hear his name again within a decade.” 

There was no response.

“Are you scared I’m unable to pay this price?” Chu Tianyi sneered at the corner of his mouth. 

There was still no response.

He turned his head in annoyance, but at this moment, he jolted up!

At his side… a single foot away, Heavens Law’s deputy branch master, Qi Mingyang, the person who had caused Xu Yangyi to fail his breakthrough, the Foundation Establishment Senior who eliminated nuisances for Chu Tianyi, at this moment...

He had been beheaded!

An undisturbed smile was still preserved on Qi Mingyang’s face, and his head had been raised up by a hand. This hand had brought the head high into the air, causing it to greedily spill blood. Threads of scarlet liquid poured into a tender and beautiful mouth. The crimson ichor followed the corner of this mouth to extend downwards and flow over a body!

“You… You!” Chu Tianyi was scared out of his wits. Even he was unable to restrain his scream. “How could you be here?!”

It was a lovely young girl. An extremely beautiful young lolita. 

Her long hair draped down to her waist like a cascade of black silk. She had a pair of limpid peach-blossom eyes, two willowy brows, and she wore a gorgeous bright-yellow Qing-era qipao with a vermilion phoenix wishing to take flight with flapping wings embroidered on it. 

Her skin was extremely white, a whiteness like that of a corpse, and her revealed skin was like sparking and translucent snow. She appeared to be no more than thirteen or fourteen years old, but the fullness of her chest made a great majority of the women present blush in shame. With a slender waist that could be fully grasped, she had long legs like water snakes, outlining her extraordinarily captivating beauty. 

But at this instant, Chu Tianyi wasn’t of the slightest mind to admire her. Instead, icy coldness penetrated him to his very core, so terribly cold!

The beautiful young girl even twisted Qi Mingyang’s still-smiling head like a toy lantern. The contrast of her snow-white skin and the dark-red blood only caused one to shiver because of this strange sensation!

Rivulets of blood spread down her body, yet she seemed to be unaware of this, only carrying an intoxicated look of delight. Her face, which would in all likelihood become that of an outstanding beauty’s in the future, revealed a kind of intoxicated joy. Her ten jade fingers fiddled around with the head in her hands. This scene made Chu Tianyi sense a bone-piercing killing intent. 

The young girl didn’t respond, and Chu Tianyi quietly stood up without need of his cane. This high official of China, who hadn’t even just shivered once, tightly pursed his lips now, forcing himself retreat back step by step as far as he could. 

His head was soaked with cold sweat, and he dragged his fist with a deathly tightness. As for the two Great Circle Qi Condensation cultivators he had brought with him, their souls had already fled their mortal coils in fear, at this moment. They were horrified, and their teeth chattered as they shivered. They wanted to retreat, yet they discovered that their legs were completely beyond their control!

This was true terror. A shivering like one’s body had arrived in hell

The god of death was no less than two meters away from him with a smile that could bring the heart to a full shiver. 

Thump… Qi Mingyang’s head was tossed to the side by the young girl, and Chu Tianyi immediately froze in step. His throat was awfully sore, extremely sore. He wanted to yell but was simply unable to shout. It was as if palpable might had already transformed into a hand that was tightly grasped onto his throat. 

“Truly an intoxicating flavor.” The young girl didn’t wear shoes, and her snowy jade feet leisurely strolled towards Chu Tianyi. The expression on her face was absent of sorrow or joy, like dead autumn leaves or the abyss of the winter sun. She seemed not to have just killed a man, but only casually crushed an ant.

Did one need a reason to crush an ant to death? It was unnecessary. If an explanation truly was required, then...

She was hungry. 

“This Palace saw you on television.” The young girl coolly sat down where Chu Tianyi was originally seated, holding the teacup and gently taking a sip. “Good tea… Is this that excellent Big Red Robe? The one with only a single tree in all of China?” [2]

She slightly raised her head, and her hair seemed to move freely of the wind. She carried a sliver of sorrow in her eyes. “In my 128 years… I’ve never experienced this flavor…” 

“Humans, how low and petty but moreover frail…” She gently caressed the teacup lid. As if she had not spoken with humans for far too long, she murmured, “But for society to develop to the present… even though those ancient and aloof cultivators were inseparable to humanity, as well…” 

“Because of the thinness of qi, the flying speed of Foundation Establishment cultivators can compare to… What is it called?” The young girl raised her chin, setting off an elegant curve. Only after several seconds of silence did she speak. “Right, airplane. They would rather sit down on an airplane, unwilling to fly themselves… and that’s not even to mention Qi Condensation insects…” 

“The cultivation world’s cornerstone is its hundreds of thousands Qi Condensation cultivators. They rely on humanity’s livelihood, and Foundation Establishment cultivators can barely exceed external objects with difficulty… Heh… What am I saying?” She finally smiled, sudden like the coming of spring wind at night and the blossoming of a vast forest of pear-flower trees. [3]

“Deputy Minister Chu, I haven’t talked for a long time, so I don’t even know what to say. How about you accompany me with a few words?”

Chu Tianyi’s entire body was drenched in a cold sweat.

Even when countless people had declared that they would assist Xu Yangyi in his vengeance moments ago, he had not been so frightened! 

“What?” A smidgen of worry appeared on the young girl’s face, and she stood up delicately. “Are you unwilling? Do you think I’m insane, too?”

“ATTACK!!!!!!” Chu Tianyi hadn’t yelled, but his two Qi Condensation cultivators were finally unable to restrain themselves from hoarsely screaming! “ATTACK!!! Attack!!! Protect Deputy Minister Chu! Attack! This is NOT a drill!!!” 

A mournful screech cut across the tranquility of the Unrivaled Beneath the Heavens Arena, and everyone suddenly jumped in their hearts! The first reaction of the Foundation Establishment cultivators was to transform into eight silhouettes and soar towards Chu Tianyi in a flash!

A white rainbow pierces the sun, a cold wind howls! [4]

At this instant, the Foundation Establishment cultivators erupted with their full spiritual force! 

Within the qi walls, Xu Yangyi’s eyes suddenly opened. What was going on outside? 

One, two, three, four… eight rays of otherworldly qi suddenly burst forth! It was different from the prior eruption; these qi rays carried a heart-shaking killing intent! 

What was happening?! All of the Foundation Establishment cultivators were taking action? 

Xu Yangyi was without the slightest doubt a Qi Condensation cultivator…  because among these rays, even the weakest was vastly stronger than himself! 

In the outside world, Wang Buzhi bore the brunt of the impact among the eight silhouettes! 

Wobble… It was unknown when, but a violet bell had appeared within his hands. Its style was ancient and a speck of magenta radiance was faintly discernible within it, carrying a swift and fierce murderous aura. As if the bell was a speeding goose, it raced towards the young girl. 

Behind him, three old men, already so old that they were soon to be buried, emitted spiritual pressure from their bodies. In the same vein...

They were the Great Circle of Foundation Establishment!

“Even the Three Old Friends in Winter have come…” The young girl faintly exclaimed, “I see some nostalgic faces…” [5]

“Life is bitter and short. Enjoy the present with no thought of the future. Why are you all so anxious to throw your lives away…”

Firecloud, Shadowslay, Moonchaser, and some other cultivator were behind the old men. 

With a fan raging with flames, three chilling sword-beams shot out from it, piercing towards the young girl with a speed that could chase stars and overtake the moon! 

Eight furious roars containing unparalleled fury shook the firmament in the Unrivaled Beneath the Heavens Arena!

“Fiend! Accept your death!”

1. “Made wedding clothes for someone else” This line is based off a poem called “A Poor Woman” by Qin Taoyu. This poem depicts the story of a poor woman that makes wedding clothes for other women, but because she is poor does not have the resources to get her own. This phrase has come to be known as an idea of “Doing all the hard work for someone else’s benefit”

2. 本宫 - This is what the girl calls herself. “This Palace” used to denote high social status, especially in a royal court.

3. This bit of about pear flower trees and the spring wind at night is based off a poem by a Tang poet named Cen Can.

4. 长虹贯日,寒风飒起 - White rainbow penetrates the sun, cold wind howls. Line by a Tang poet, Li Bai (701-762 CE). Believed to be an astrological sign that the world will be thrust into disaster.

5. 岁寒三友 - “Three Friends in Winter” This is kinda hard to get down in English, since this phrase is based on a traditional Chinese story/lesson. These three old friends refer to three types of trees: Pine, Bamboo, and Plum. It is said that these three trees are extremely strong and hearty, so that even in the winter, they still grow. It is said that pine is evergreen, never old, bamboo follows the path of the noble, and plum is clear as ice clean like jade. Because these three trees can grow together and remain healthy in the cold of winter together, they are said to be three “friends”. So there is your story inside a story. I would say the girl uses this story in context in an almost mocking manner.

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Asura Grounds has a couple different translations, but myth behind it is more significant. Supposed to depict the region where Asuras battle and fight. In Buddhist mythology, Asuras are considered demigods that follow a particular sin, usually wrath. While they are powerful, they are incapable of using peace to settle things and delight in battle. This particular chapter title is to denote a bloody battle.