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Within the void, the eyes of the body called Meng Xue opened.

It was as if something had purposefully stirred her. A wisp of intent that she shouldn’t have felt, carried within a warning!

Her brilliant pink eyes searched the netherworld for the signs of her beloved. Though her current body was weak, her authority was absolute. Within seconds, she glimpsed at the silhouette of an insignificant eel.

She was about to ignore the unappetizing fish, but her intuition thought otherwise. She used the fundamental laws to transfer the body called Meng Xue to the netherworld.

Instantly, the mutant eel started struggling, which resulted in Meng Xue cutting off its tail.

{Behave, little fish.}

Through the currents of fate, a name suddenly appeared in her mind.

{So you are named Sebastian. Behave, little Sebastian.}

Just as Sebastian was going to make a last stand while sending the remains of its young master’s world, Meng Xue spoke once more.

{My husband would be proud to see you like this, little Sebastian. His blood wasn’t wasted on you. Hmm… Where is it…}

Sebastian… remembered her!

Wasn’t she present, wasn’t she near its young master before Sebastian’s metamorphosis?! Husband? Was she the young master’s husband?!

Unfortunately, the unknown… being…? had already obliterated nearly half of Sebastian’s body. What was happening? Why was she here? Why did she attack? All those questions completely eluded Sebastian. Simply staying alive was an arduous task at that moment! The pressure emanating from the being’s body was almost unbearable!

Meanwhile, Meng Xue scanned the remnants of the primitive array. And found out why her… intuition? Yes, it should be her intuition that had warned her! She found out why her intuition warned her!

There was a woman, that smiled at her husband! And her husband smiled back!! At the woman!!!

Suddenly, all reason left her.

{… Mu Qingge?}

She wiped her existence off the universe. Completely. From past and the future.

Even though Sebastian was struggling to stay alive, it still shuddered at the scene.

{He was only confused. He is still sleeping. Yet to wake up. If he remembered he wouldn’t have smiled. How dare she smile back at my darling!!!}

She who had freckles, had worked on a restaurant. Meng Xue turned that place into dust.

{Once he wakes up, we will be together again. Yes, it is only a matter of time. No one can stop it! No one can stop it!!!}

The restaurant was inside a city, where other insects were present. Did they play a role in this? Meng Xue couldn’t take any chances, otherwise her heart may experience an imbalance in the future!

The city and its past and future residents, she wiped their existence too.

{He will awaken this time. Yes, he will. I will protect him. I will make sure. I will. Make. Sure!!!}

On the side, Sebastian gathered its last bit of energy, to send a message.

|This place… important… to… young mast-…|

Meng Xue grasped the eel’s head with her hand.

{You dare call my darling that?!}

However, once she understood the contents of the message, she faltered.

{Important? Why would this wretched place be important? Is it because of her? No, he only smiled because she smiled. Maybe he didn’t smile at all. Yes… Yes! How could he forget me?}

Her husband’s current body was born on this primitive array. Meng Xue remembered. Her grasp over the disgusting fish’s jaw weakened.

{…}

If this place was important to her husband, then it was important to her!

She stared at the dying thing in her hands and spoke with sheer disgust.

{Weak!}

Her husband had given this fish his precious blood, and even elevated its existence. How would he react if she killed his pet? She couldn’t make a mistake, not when she was this close!

Though the body her sliver was inhabiting was weak, it did have a netherworld bloodline. Therefore, she slashed the body’s heart and let a single drop of blood essence out.

Perhaps due to her body being young, she couldn’t help but blush. She was doing the same thing as her husband! Maybe this Sebastian wasn’t just his pet now, but their pet instead!

{So romantic!}

* * *

While on her way back to the Wen family estate, Wen Jiayi was intently waiting for the 1903rd chapter of the “I Got Betrayed by Celestials, Was Cast out From Heavens, but by Using My Peerless Blacksmith Skills I Will Get Everything Back. Celestials, Feel My Wrath! Heavens, Bow Before Me! I Am the Peerless Divine Blacksmith God!”.

With her brilliant pink eyes, she watched the timer like a hawk. Once it reached 00:00, she opened up the new chapter without delay.

Yu Xian, the serial scumbag, was forging a new weapon. Wen Jiayi paid special attention to the weapon’s materials. Because the last dozen chapters gave excruciatingly detailed history of those items!

‘Ashes of the first Phoenix, a strand from the 3rd petal of the True Rebirth Lotus, blood crystal of an interdimensional higher being, fresh essence from the sage’s ascendance, and…’

The final, hidden material, Yu Xian finally brought it out from his storage ring. He had a content smile on the next panel.

“Spiritual Osmium will be the perfect base for this halberd!”

Wen Jiayi’s eyes opened wide! From shock! Finally! That strangely named metal!

Unfortunately, her enthusiasm was cut short. In the next panel, Yu Xian raised his head and looked towards the sky with a frown.

The night sky suddenly brightened as if a new sun was born!

“Senior Yu Xian. It has been a while.”

Yu Xian narrowed his eyes and seemed to be contemplating on something. His answer came on the next panel.

“… Little brother He. Why don’t you come down here so we can properly speak.”

The response from the little brother He was immediate!

Clouds started to dissipate, illusory flowers bloomed, sacred cranes flew in the background, saints sighed, auspicious beams of light granted extended life and Dao understanding to all that it touched upon…

Meanwhile, on the next panel, Yu Xian kept watching the descent of “little brother He” with large black glasses.

6 panels later, when the so-called little brother finally showed himself, the scene was filled with *Shalala* texts.

This was a new development. Wen Jiayi had no idea what *Shalala* meant. Was it a sound effect for spiritual waves? She thought that might be the case, since Yu Xian’s clothes were disheveled, and his spine was bent backward. He was clearly enduring a great deal of pressure.

“Little brother pays respects to the senior.”

“You… don’t have to do that. Our ages are similar too, you don’t need to call me senior.”

Yu Xian helped his little brother He up in a hurry. Only then the light surrounding the said brother subsided, and Wen Jiayi got a clear look at him in the next panel.

Because of the simple art style of the graphic novel, when a character with good looks appeared, they would end up displaying similar mannerisms. This “little brother He” was no exception.

‘So he is an evil character that will betray Yu Xian later? Hmmm. Not bad.’

Aside from the handsome-bad-guy smile, he had relatively sophisticated yellow robes. Perhaps there really was an insignia on the robe, but the art of the graphic novel showed it as random twisted lines.

After realizing the truth, Wen Jiayi started paying special attention to people’s clothes, just in case she could spot something. Due to the detail inconsistency within the novel, she couldn’t find anything so far!

On the next panel, little brother He rejected Yu Xian’s courtesy.

“How could I do that? My brother taught me to always respect seniority!”

The little brother’s face turned serious as he gave yet another salute. Yu Xian removed his black glasses and subtly shook his head.

“Little brother, you should’ve been handling the matters of your family. Has something happened that made you personally came over?”

“Senior is correct. It is because of a family matter that I am here.”

Yu Xian sighed. “Then we shouldn’t talk here.”

Over the next few panels, Yu Xian’s palace came to view. This was a first, usually the author relied on displaying the same set of buildings over and over again, rather than showing a bird’s eye view.

‘Looks like he made it similar to the 4th primordial era designs.’

If the graphic novel was truly accurate to this degree, then Wen Jiayi wasn’t surprised. Though rare, this type of design was still in use. Even the Han family celestial ship had it. All of Han De’s disciple’s abodes were like that.

“Normal” readers of this graphic novel wouldn’t have noticed the origins of this design. Wen Jiayi found the situation rather amusing. Perhaps despite being a serial cheater, Yu Xian hadn’t forgotten his roots!

They arrived at what she assumed to be the private cultivation chambers of Yu Xian. She couldn’t understand why the environmental art was suddenly so detailed, but since it wasn’t a new development, her attention went back to the plot.

‘It seems I have underestimated this new character’s importance…’

Normally, Wen Jiayi would’ve rolled her eyes, since she would’ve thought the author was introducing yet another random character! Of course, now that she knew the truth, these inconsistencies and pacing issues didn’t phase her any longer. The life of a cultivator was long and unpredictable.

“The Grand Separation Array is now active. Little brother, speak freely.”

Little brother He bowed once again.

“Senior. This matter… is regarding my brother. I humbly request your assistance.”

Though he was bowing, the little brother He’s eyes were narrowed, and there was a dangerous glint within them.

Yu Xian closed his eyes, sighed, then shook his head.

“I don’t know where he is. Why don’t you try ‘them’ instead?”

“Senior, do you really think I didn’t?”

Yu Xian thought ‘Of course you did. How could a bro-con like you not look at every nook and cranny?’

This was yet another new term for Wen Jiayi. What did bro-con mean? Also, who did they meant with ‘Them’?

Two men sat down at the center of the array at equal levels. Wen Jiayi raised an eyebrow once again. The arrogant Yu Xian was giving a tremendous amount of face towards his little brother He. Why was that little brother so insistent on showing so much deference to Yu Xian then? Instead of thinking about it, Wen Jiayi continued to read.

In the next panel, Yu Xian secretly sent a voice transmission to his 9th wife, though the contents weren’t shown, the 9th wife, Zhong Luli, immediately grabbed her treasured whip and disappeared!

Inside the cultivation chambers, little brother He spoke.

“Other seniors are also worried, but they said they promised my brother and could not look for him, no matter what.”

Yu Xian frowned. “Did they really followed that order? And what about your family?”

“I dare not to presume seniors’ thoughts. As for the family, at the moment… they do not know. I thought Senior Yu Xian might be different, since you have left the Whispering Realms long ago.”

Yet another secret voice transmission, this time Yu Xian spoke to two protectors of his sect. Both reacted the same way and immediately vanished with fierce expressions.

“I’m afraid little brother travel came all the way for naught. I, like others, have orders not to interfere.”

“Is that so, senior…”

“…”

The disciples, the soldiers, the artisans, have all vanished from the city, sect, and Yu Xian’s palace. The realm that was bustling with activity just a few pages ago, was now deserted.

“… I thought for sure my brother would’ve contacted senior Yu Xian. He always praised your deep understanding of Dao, and your relentless spirit.”

Yu Xian’s frown grew deeper as his little brother continued.

“Did you know he replaced his soul light?”

“… What?”

A thin, but violent looking spiritual energy covered the body of little brother He.

“I know, it is unthinkable, isn’t it? When did he do that? Why did he do that? Thankfully, mother hadn’t found out about it, for now. Can you imagine how would she react?”

Panel by panel, the spiritual energy covering the little brother expanded.

“That soul light was her only way of knowing that my brother was safe. When she missed him she would look at it, when she had a bad dream, a bad feeling, when she was sad, when she was happy, she would look at it.”

‘Obviously that’s you, since she would never do that.’ Yu Xian thought. He sighed, then spoke with a slightly sad smile.

“You were like this when you were little too. Always my brother this, my brother that.”

A succession of flashback panels showed a child with big shining eyes, excitedly running to Yu Xian as he was forging a weapon. With his absurdly big yellow robes, the child had even tripped and fallen in the last panel, but even that couldn’t deter him.

“Shenior Yu Shian! Shenior Yu Shian! My browher said: A Cultivat’rs greatest shtregnth, is patience!”

“Shenior Yu Shian! Shenior Yu Shian! My browher said: Remind yourshelf that overconfid’nce is a shlow and inshidious killer.”

“Shenior Yu Shian! Shenior Yu Shian! My browher said: Hope is the first shtep on the road to dishappointment!”

“Shenior Yu Shian! Ow! Ow! Shenior Yu Shian! My browher said: The rwight mann in the wrong place, can make all the diffference, in the world.”

Wen Jiayi fell into deep thought. Was this ‘little brother He’ a relative of a future disciple? Currently, Han De’s only male disciple was Yu Xian. If so, then the ‘Them’ should be other disciples.

Was he going to get a disciple from the primordial families? A soul light was in a completely different realm than a soul shard. Even in primordial families, only extremely important heirs would be given the privilege of having one. In the entire Wen family, only Wen Jiayi had a soul light. Not even her father had one in his youth!

“Senior. Do you know where my brother is?”

Yu Xian shook his head.

“Your words do not match your actions, Senior. If you really don’t know, why did you evacuate your people?”

Now, Yu Xian had the same cold glint in his eyes.

“Same reason as you, little brother. Same reason why you brought countless experts at my doorstep.”

Intense, red-colored spiritual waves started to come off from Yu Xian. Two men stared at each other, as if they were battling through their thoughts.

They weren’t the only ones in a standoff. In an unknown location, experts wearing Yu Xian’s metallic gray robes were shielding the disciples from numerous grim-faced silhouettes wearing yellow robes.

The next panel showed a collection of disciples and elders, in yet another unknown location.

“Elder Shu! The hidden exit is about to open!”

Grey bearded elder smiled confidently.

“This passageway is not ordinary. It is said that the patriarch himself has opened it countless years ago! It doesn’t have a pre-determined exit! We shall use this to our advantage to strike at our enemies at the first opportunity! Hmph!”

Disciples and elders alike, nodded at his words as their eyes burned with determination.

The door opened, but unexpectedly, on the other side, there were thousands of yellow-robed experts waiting for them. Elder Shu’s face turned unsightly, and he started sweating from sheer cultivation pressure alone.

The next succession of panels showed 12 different groups, some in space, some inside subterranean chambers, some in the netherworld, all encountering impossible numbers of experts blocking them.

Back in Yu Xian’s private cultivation chambers, little brother He gave an ever so slight bow. “Senior need not take offense. This little brother is only acting cautiously.”

Wen Jiayi stopped reading. She went back and re-read the previous 4 pages. Then she read them again.

‘How cowardly could you be?!’

What kind of self-respecting cultivator would completely evacuate their sect?! They didn’t resist at all! Not even for a second! How could anyone leave at the first sign of trouble?!

Her desire to throw the jade slate into the wall rose significantly. Worse of all, neither the disciples nor the elders disapproved of the situation. It was the opposite! Which meant that this was a systematic problem!

Back in the graphic novel, Yu Xian kept his eyes closed as he spoke. “The last news of him, I received through my homeworld. A beacon of sorts, giving orders to the mortals, advising their developments.”

“When?”

“Just over 200 years ago. The beacon itself is much, much older.”

200 years ago? Wen Jiayi recalled the time skips and calculated the chapter number.

‘That should be around… Chapter 101. When Fan Cai and Yu Xian visited his homeworld…’

Wen Jiayi re-read the last panel a few times, because the implications were too great to ignore. The only news Yu Xian received on his homeworld was about his master, Han De.

‘… Long Xiu and Han Wei… will have another child? Another son?’

Conceiving Han De was nothing short of a miracle. A miracle that required untold thousands of years of preparations, and even required fate to be aligned! Quite literally!

‘Could it be something else, something the graphic novel didn’t show?’

Normally Wen Jiayi would’ve rolled her eyes and think that this was a new shoehorned development. Every hundred chapters or so a new one would appear, introduce a new throwaway character, and a throwaway problem. In the end, Yu Xian would solve everything and life would go on, for anyone but Yu Xian’s enemies, of course.

However, Long Xiu having another son… was different. According to the Long family planning program, Han De was a unique offshoot, a near miss. If this new son fulfilled the Long family’s requirements, the entire family could leave the Whispering Realms altogether!

As she stared at the graphic novel, Wen Jiayi thought maybe they already did in the future.

The Long family didn’t explain their end goal to Wen Jiayi, but the contract they made was ironclad. Even if they fulfilled their purpose through unexpected circumstances, nothing could endanger the contract.

‘If this “little brother He” meets their criteria, they won’t have a need for Han De’s offspring…’

Wen Jiayi felt uncomfortable, and hurriedly turned her attention back to the graphic novel. Little brother He seemed quite distraught in the next panel.

“Why didn’t you send a message? Aren’t you an elder? Did you ever think of your brother and sister disciples?!”

To the frowning little brother He, Yu Xian calmly smiled. “Little brother, I’m not hiding my cultivation. This is my true cultivation base.”

Little brother He looked surprised at first. As he inspected Yu Xian’s body though, his face darkened. “Senior, what happened?”

“This matter, I will see to it myself.”

“Senior Yu Xian. You of all people should know, that isn’t good enough.”

Little brother He stood up, it was as if he wasn’t the one that threatened Yu Xian just a second ago. The latter seemed to have expected the former’s response and continued.

“Sit down. I have my own considerations, and this matter is personal. Since it is you, I will tell you a small part of it. If you still insist on involving the Imperium, then I will not oppose.”

Wen Jiayi was surprised. ‘Little brother He’ was acting as if Yu Xian had lost his cultivation base. Suddenly, an idea came to her mind!

‘…?! Is he referring to the title of the graphic novel?!’

Was she finally going to see the main plot unfold after 1903 chapters?!

‘This…’

But this wasn’t a novel. Wen Jiayi found this feeling quite vexing at times. She was, in the end, reading about the life of Yu Xian. A real person. A disciple of her husband. Future husband…

However, after 1903 chapters, she was quite curious. The background of the novel also involved the future. Not only of the Whispering Realms but the person that she chose as her husband!

In the next panel, little brother He went back to his seat, and Yu Xian expressionlessly started explaining.

“Long before master left, I felt doubts in my cultivation. Though now I see I couldn’t admit this at the time. As this doubt grew, master naturally noticed my hesitation, and gave me advice. But… I was headstrong, and didn’t heed his words.

After he left, so did I. To places far away, where the influence of the Imperium hadn’t reached. There I fancied myself a god reborn. Disposed of the unworthy, and became the heavens. My cultivation advanced leaps and bounds. I was at the cusp of elevating my existence…

But…”

Yu Xian chucked.

“… Just as master predicted, I was betrayed. Cast out from the heavens, I fell. But thanks to the master’s teachings, I wasn’t dead. I bided my time, I still do.

This isn’t even the first time. Before I met master, I was betrayed and my soul was nearly extinguished.”

Seeing his little brother’s fierce expression, Yu Xian shook his head.

“The ones that betrayed me were my friends, confidants, even wives. This debt, I will naturally collect, just as I have done so in the past. And through it, I will polish the imperfections of my Dao.

You see why I didn’t want to involve elder sisters?”

Little brother He had a complicated look. “… Yes. Now that my brother is missing, nothing can stand in their way.”

Yu Xian knowingly nodded.

“The matter with the master… Don’t poke too deeply into it. Master has designs within designs. Everything is within his considerations. Even leaving a beacon on my homeworld could be a sign for you. He would know that you would eventually find me, and won’t leave without an answer.

Now now. Don’t frown. My homeworld is being protected by ‘that’. If you get excited and wreaked havoc, how do you think your brother will respond?”

“… Then what could he be doing all this time?”

‘It looks like he really is Han De’s brother. To be distraught by separation… This… Han He… seems to be quite fond of him’

Wen Jiayi couldn’t understand this so-called Han He, but she still appreciated his loyalty.

As a response to Han He, Yu Xian shrugged. Then, as if something came to his mind, he smiled. “Perhaps he is alternating between achieving his designs, and playing around.”

“… Playing around?”

Yu Xian had a reminiscent smile. Perhaps there was a tinge of guilt within as well. “Yes. Master was always busy after establishing the Imperium of Light. Now that he is away, he could have as much fun as he desires with mortal girls.”

“… Senior Yu Xian, do you think I won’t do anything as you insult my brother?... With a mortal girl?”

Han He wasn’t having it. Spiritual energy started gathering around him once more. Wen Jiayi also approved his actions. Yu Xian was simply too much this time!

Yu Xian showed surprise at first, but a moment later, a meaningful smirk appeared on his face. “To think that you would have no idea of your brother’s preferences after all this time… Hahahaha…”

“You!!!”

“Hahahahaha… Calm down. Calm down! Why would I insult my master? I am only speaking the truth. Before you were born, master used to chase mortal girls. He especially liked freckled ones.”

“My brother would neve-”

“In front of his disciples? In front of his little brother? No. A man, a master, a brother has his pride. How could he show that side of himself to you? But, in the end, master is also a man. And every man has their own preferences. I’ve seen him chase three different mortal girls in the same day.”

In the next panel, was a freckled girl in extremely simple clothes, holding the nonexistent arm of a ball made of light. Both the girl, and the light ball were blushing as they gazed at each other!

Wen Jiayi instantly recognized that the ball of light was supposed to represent Han De.

*crack* *crack*

*CRACK*

Han De… liked freckles? Freckles?!

Wasn’t that the disguise Wen Jiayi put on when she met him for the first time? Didn’t she adjust her cultivation to Qi Condensation with no talent? Back then, she was essentially a mortal girl with freckles!

No wonder… No wonder he was so infatuated that day!!

And he went out to find mortal girls? Not one, but three on the same day??

*CRACK* *CRACK*

Though Wen Jiayi was applying a considerable amount of pressure to the jade slate, the only thing she was achieving was cracking her knuckles.

She chose him. She. Even if their marriage was for an alliance, both of them had to act with a certain amount of decorum! This was simply throwing away her dignity!!

The chapter was almost over with only two panels remaining. Wen Jiayi controlled her senses and continued reading them.

“I don’t know why master likes mortal girls with moles or freckles. Maybe his white moonlight was like that, and he is trying to forget his regrets. Who knows…”

“My brother grew up in the old Han family sect. How could he meet a mortal girl, let alone fall in love with her?”

To Han He’s furious and disdainful look, Yu Xian shook his head.

“Before Imperium became a powerhouse, master used to create special training illusions. Only the original six disciples know of their existence. One day, master scrapped them all without giving any reason.

My homeworld is the only evidence that they existed.

You should ask of this to elder sister Yao Qing, and let her know. There may be a reason as to why master is so concerned with the lives of mortals.

I will not speak of this anymore, as our cultivations are too low these matters. Nothing good will come from interfering with master’s affairs. This, I know from experience.”

The chapter had ended in the classic fashion. Wen Jiayi now had more questions than she had answers.

‘What Han He said makes sense. Han De grew up in the Starfall Mountain Sect. He had no business with mortals, and the only woman he chased had flawless skin with not a blemish on sight.’

Next, she remembered her own disguise. That day, Han De was clearly excited at the sight of her. But it wasn’t just excitement he felt, there was also a fair amount of fear too.

After thinking things through, Wen Jiayi frowned.

‘Did he… fell in love at first sight with my disguise?’

Was that the reason for his objection to their engagement? He even mentioned talking to the grand elder of the Long family! Because he fell in love with her disguise?!

This… made some sense! If that was his first independent encounter with the opposite sex, if he couldn’t follow through with his intent, then that experience could become a knot in his heart.

The chapter had ended, but Wen Jiayi kept blankly staring at the jade slate.

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