Chapter 173: Dai Yue’s Change of Heart

Demoness's Art of Vengeance

Although the Sect Elders’ schemes were vile and infuriating, Jun Xiaomo was still relatively unperturbed about the prospects of any incidents arising during the course of the competition.

Quite apart from the fact that she had already given a stack of talismans to each of her martial brothers and sisters from Heavenly Peak, she knew that there was no way these schemers would be able to do too much during the competition under public scrutiny.

Furthermore, the title of cultivation fanatics conferred on the Heavenly Peak disciples was not simply for show. Each and every one of these Heavenly Peak disciples were easily ranked among the top of their contemporaries. It could never be an easy thing to scheme against them given their abilities.

Thus, Jun Xiaomo temporarily placed her worries and concerns for her martial brothers and sisters on the backburner.

That said, these burdens had occupied her mind for the entire day, and they had caused Jun Xiaomo to completely overlook the fact that she had intended to look for Rong Ruihan at the end of the day. Fortunately, Rong Ruihan was of the same mind as her, and he looked for her of his own volition as well.

Rong Ruihan approached the Heavenly Peak entourage as they were on their way back to the inn.

“Xiaomo, it’s been a long time.” Rong Ruihan stood squarely across Jun Xiaomo as he greeted her. His chiseled appearance was supplemented by an expression of warmth and tenderness.

“Who are you? What are you looking for martial sister Xiaomo for?” Wei Gaolang stepped forward, stood directly in front of Jun Xiaomo and glared at Rong Ruihan as he questioned him cautiously.

Don’t you think for one moment I’m not aware that you’ve been travelling with those punks from the Eternal Summit Sect. You must be looking for martial sister Xiaomo with bad intentions! A sense of righteous indignation swelled from the depths of Wei Gaolang’s heart as he was filled with the desire to protect Jun Xiaomo.

Naturally, he had selectively obviated from his mind the fact that his combat abilities were a far cry from Jun Xiaomo’s combat abilities. It had to be said that Wei Gaolang had lost out to Jun Xiaomo every single time they had sparred, despite the fact that Jun Xiaomo’s cultivation level was one level lower than his.

In any event, Jun Xiaomo looked at the comical little martial brother standing in front of him, slightly moved, but mostly exasperated.

She patted her little martial brother’s shoulders as she placated, “Alright, Little Lang, brother Rong is my good friend. You don’t have to be so uptight.”

“Good friend?” Wei Gaolang was stunned as he whipped his head around and clarified, “Martial sister, since when did you become good friends with people from the Eternal Summit Sect?”

“I’m not from the Eternal Summit Sect.”

“He’s not from the Eternal Summit Sect.”

Rong Ruihan and Jun Xiaomo’s answers echoed out at the same time. They froze for a moment as their eyes locked, before both of them began to chuckle lightheartedly.

Wei Gaolang suddenly had a hunch that the relationship between his martial sister and that male cultivator was much better than that of normal friends. Otherwise, how could they possibly be so coordinated and synchronized with their responses?

For some reason, Wei Gaolang’s heart ached slightly. He felt as though his own dear martial sister had just been stolen by some male cultivator of unknown origin.

It was akin to the feeling in his heart when he realized that the cabbage in his garden had been eaten up by a wild boar.

Jun Xiaomo noticed that Wei Gaolang was pouting in dismay because he was still wary of Rong Ruihan’s personality and character. Thus, she continued to explain, “Brother Rong was someone that martial brother Ye and I had encountered on our travels outside the Sect. He’s helped us a lot during that period of time. If not for him, I might not have been able to return to the Sect.”

Jun Xiaomo’s words were slightly exaggerated. After all, she had many life-saving tips and tricks up her sleeves. But Wei Gaolang was her dear martial brother, an existence akin to her family, while Rong Ruihan was her bosom friend for life. She did not want to see the two of them view each other with any measure of hostility at all.

“Ah?! So it’s like that!” Such a possibility had never crossed Wei Gaolang’s mind. This would also explain why his relationship martial sister Xiaomo was so unusually close. They must possess a tacit understanding that had been developed over the course of countless life and death battles!

Once his mind digested these thoughts, Wei Gaolang finally understood everything. He chuckled and bashfully scratched his head before muttering, “Since that’s the case, thanks for all your help, brother…”

“No need for thanks. Xiaomo is my…friend.” Rong Ruihan paused for a split second before he managed to eke out the last word in his statement with a slightly darkened expression.

Yet Jun Xiaomo did not notice this tiny detail.

“Since you’re martial sister’s friend, then you’re also the friend of I, Wei Gaolang! Don’t be afraid to ask me if you need any help from me next time!” Wei Gaolang patted his puffed-up chest as he proclaimed.

He was just a young sprout, yet his attitude and disposition were far more exaggerated and audacious than any other kid his age.

Even a usually serious and somber person like Rong Ruihan couldn’t help but chuckle at Wei Gaolang’s comical behaviour.

He finally understood where Jun Xiaomo had got her bubbly and spirited personality from.

A person is the product of his environment after all.

Unfortunately, Jun Xiaomo’s personality had changed slightly ever since Ye Xiuwen’s “death”. Even though the change in personality was ever so slight, Rong Ruihan immediately noticed it within a few moments of their interactions.

“I’ve got to thank brother Wei in advance, then.” Rong Ruihan quipped as he played along with Wei Gaolang. Then, he turned his attention back to Jun Xiaomo, “Xiaomo, do you have time now? I’d like to catch up with you.”

Jun Xiaomo was slightly taken aback, but she quickly collected herself before responding enthusiastically, “Of course I’ve got the time now. We haven’t seen each other for so long! I’d also been thinking of looking for brother Rong to catch up for old times’ sakes.”

“Then, let’s go. Let me buy you dinner, if you don’t mind?” Rong Ruihan’s expression grew warm and tender.

“As long as it’s not grilled meat.” Jun Xiaomo chuckled, as she walked towards Rong Ruihan.

This was a joke. After all, Jun Xiaomo had grilled meat for them everyday while they were escaping for their lives. She had already had enough grilled meat for a while.

As Rong Ruihan thought about those days of persecution, his heart was also filled with immense sorrow and regret.

“Ah? Martial sister, does this mean you’re not going back with us anymore?” Wei Gaolang quipped with a slight stupefaction.

Jun Xiaomo patted his head as she replied, “What do you mean? Brother Rong and I are going to reminisce about our good old days. Be good, and help me inform my parents, alright?”

“So it’s like that…” Wei Gaolang hesitated for a moment, before adding, “Won’t your parents be worried for you?”

“They know brother Rong. I’ve told them about him before. It’ll be fine if you inform them about it.” Bemused, Jun Xiaomo responded.

“Then, alright. Don’t come back too late, martial sister.” Wei Gaolang was still rather concerned by the fact that one man and one woman were going to have a meal together.

“Alright, you should hurry on back to the rest of your martial brothers and sisters. Otherwise, you’re going to lose your way back to the inn.” Jun Xiaomo patted his head in exasperation.

It had to be said that Wei Gaolang was not only mischievous, he was also horrendous with his sense of direction. Jun Xiaomo was seriously and sincerely concerned that he would lose his way if he did not quickly catch up with the rest of his martial brothers and sisters.

“Then I’ll be leaving, martial sister.” Wei Gaolang skipped back to the rest of the Heavenly Peak disciples.

Fortunately, the rest of the Heavenly Peak disciples had noticed that Wei Gaolang and Jun Xiaomo had been left behind, and they were waiting for them not too far ahead.

Once she ascertained that Wei Gaolang had joined up with the rest, Jun Xiaomo turned back to Rong Ruihan and addressed him once more, “Let’s go then, brother Rong.”

Rong Ruihan nodded, and they slowly began to make their way to a street full of inns located at the base of the Heavenly Crane Mountain.

On the other side, Dai Yue turned around immediately after the competition had ended, intending to look for Rong Ruihan. To her dismay, Rong Ruihan had already disappeared.

“Where’s brother Rong?!” Dai Yue grabbed another Eternal Summit Sect disciple by the collar in consternation as she interrogated him.

“This…this…he left earlier, saying that he was going to look for a friend.” The disciple who had been held up by his collar stammered in response.

He was incredibly afraid of this martial sister of his. Whenever something did not go according to her plans or expectations, she would immediately ventilate her anger on her martial brothers and sisters. But these disciples knew that they could not resist or complain about it because Dai Yue was the Grand Elder’s daughter.

There was once a disciple who had been incredibly upset with Dai Yue’s action, and thus sternly rebuked Dai Yue there and then. In the end, that disciple vanished without a trace on the very next day.

Rumours had it that he was punished for his wrongdoing, had his cultivation crippled, and was discarded at the bottom of their mountain. Nobody knew whether he managed to survive that ordeal.

With such overprotective parents of hers, Dai Yue could naturally do as she pleased within the sect. All of the other disciples had no choice but to suppress the indignation in their hearts as they tried their best to stay out of her way.

It was an open secret that Dai Yue was fond of Qin Lingyu and had set in her sights.

Although Dai Yue had never expressed to anyone that she was fond of Qin Lingyu, her actions spoke far louder than her words. She had always leapt at any an excuse to visit Dawn Sect. Whenever she saw Qin Lingyu, she would immediately hover around him like a bee hovers around a beautiful flower. Then, when she got wind of the marriage arrangement between Jun Xiaomo and Qin Lingyu, she thrashed about the flowerbeds within the sect and even took out her anger on a few martial brothers of hers. Naturally, everyone was aware of how she felt towards Qin Lingyu.

It could be said that her heart had completely been seized by her dear “brother Qin” before she had encountered Rong Ruihan.

But just some time ago, Dai Yue encountered Rong Ruihan when she had slipped out of her sect to play. She had inadvertently encountered some ferocious spirit beasts, while Rong Ruihan happened to chance upon her and rescue her. As soon as she saw Rong Ruihan’s handsome and dignified appearance, Dai Yue practically fell in love with him immediately.

She felt that Rong Ruihan looked far better than Qin Lingyu. Furthermore, Rong Ruihan had even saved her life.

That moment when her prince charming Rong Ruihan saved her played over and over again in Dai Yue’s mind, causing Dai Yue’s emotions to roil uncontrollably. She thought that this must be fate. Otherwise, how could she have been saved by Rong Ruihan so coincidentally?

In other words, Dai Yue had had a change of heart ever since she encountered Rong Ruihan.

“My name is Dai Yue, and I thank this gallant cultivator for saving my life. May I know what my benefactor’s name is?” Dai Yue looked bashfully at Rong Ruihan as she asked.

As soon as Rong Ruihan took a closer look at Dai Yue’s appearances, he furrowed his brow. Then, without a single word, he turned and began to leave.

“Hey! Wait a minute!” Dai Yue had never expected such a response from him, and she couldn’t help but grow anxious and slightly upset. She caught up to him and remarked, “I’m the daughter of the Eternal Summit Sect’s Grand Elder. If you’re willing to follow me back, my father is sure to present you with a token of his gratitude!”

Dai Yue anxiously dangled a bait in front of Rong Ruihan.

“Eternal Summit Sect?” Rong Ruihan paused in his steps, and his expressions darkened.

“That’s right.” Dai Yue believed that Rong Ruihan had been enticed by the prospects of receiving tokens of her father’s gratitude. Thus, she looked Rong Ruihan in the eyes as she added, “Believe me, I won’t lie to you. My father is the Grand Elder of the Eternal Summit Sect. He will be extremely grateful to you for saving my life.”

Rong Ruihan deliberated for a moment, before he finally nodded towards Dai Yue.

Dai Yue raised her brows in elation. She motioned to hook her arms around Rong Ruihan’s arm, yet her nimble actions were swiftly avoided by Rong Ruihan.

“I’m not used to having people too close to me.” Rong Ruihan explained nonchalantly, causing Dai Yue’s face to turn red with embarrassment and a pale white. She found Rong Ruihan’s attitude to put her in a difficult spot, as though she were trying to take advantage of him.

However, the truth of the matter was that Rong Ruihan had never harboured any romantic feelings for Dai Yue to begin with. The only reason why he had acceded to Dai Yue’s request was because she had mentioned the “Eternal Summit Sect”.

He didn’t mind if Dai Yue blew her top and refused to bring him back to the Eternal Summit Sect either. He would still be able to achieve his goals through other means, albeit with a little bit more difficulty.

In fact, Dai Yue had been on the verge of falling out with him. Ever since she was young, there were few people who had trampled over her pride like how Rong Ruihan had done. But she held back her temper and evaluated the situation – they were hardly any better than strangers right now, and his attitude in this regard was quite understandable. At the very least, this meant that Rong Ruihan was not a casual and wanton man.

Thus, the knot in Dai Yue’s heart loosened, and she was once again filled with the desire of winning over this man before her.

She firmly believed that given Rong Ruihan’s cold and frigid personality, he would stick dearly to anyone whom he fell in love with. And that was precisely what she wanted – she wanted this handsome man to fall in love with her and stick dearly to her.

At this moment, Dai Yue couldn’t help but think about Jun Xiaomo and the existence of her marriage arrangement with Qin Lingyu.

This handsome man before her eyes was far better looking and more dignified than Qin Lingyu. When they finally got married, she was going to flaunt and gloat about her man in front of Jun Xiaomo.

Unfortunately, Dai Yue never paused to consider why Rong Ruihan was so sensitive towards the words “Eternal Summit Sect” to begin with.

Dai Yue heart was simply too convicted by the prospects that one day, this cold and frigid man would be moved by her actions and fall head over heels in love with her.

Previous Chapter Next Chapter