“Teacher, why don‘t you ever take part in the Hundred Flowers Banquets?” On the way back, Lei Wujie couldn’t help but ask.
“No matter how beautiful the flowers are, you’ll hate them after looking at them for decades on end. What’s there to admire?” Came his teacher’s response, eyes still straight and path just as unchanged.
By this time, it was already the dead of night and a full moon hung high in the night sky. As the exceptional master and disciple duo casually strolled under the moonlight, a rare sense of harmony filled the air. Unable to resist this rare opportunity, Lei Wujie blasted out another question. “Teacher, was that the famous Sword Immortal who became one just by studying? The Xie Xuan who became a Sword Immortal the very moment he executed his maiden sword strike?”
“Damn bookworm.” Li Hanyi harrumphed.
“He even gave me a book, ‘The Coming Winter’. The books he gave out to other people all seemed so special but the one he gave me looks just like a normal book you would find in the Bamboo Pavilion Bookstore in Snow Moon City.” Lei Wujie complained.
Li Hanyi, however, ignored the boy, instead throwing out his own question. “You like that girl, Ye Ruoyi?”
Lei Wujie was stunned for a moment, hesitating a little but still nodding in the end.
“Why?” It was a rare occasion that Li Hanyi actually cared enough to dig deeper.
After thinking for what felt like half a day, Lei Wujie finally stammered, “Because… because she’s pretty.”
Li Hanyi abruptly halted in his tracks. “Just because of that?”
Lei Wujie once again fell silent. Finally, he scratched his head and said, “Yes… it seems so”
Li Hanyi furrowed his brows. “Aren’t you honest? However, there are so many pretty girls in the world. Why did you fall for her?”
Lei Wujie laughed. “I said she was pretty, but it’s not like I like every pretty girl in the world. It’s just that when I first saw her, a weird sensation came over me. Thinking back about it, I don’t know her past, I don’t know her personality, or even her likes and dislikes…But after mulling over it then, I realised it was actually just because my heart stirred when I first laid eyes on her. Just because…”
“She’s pretty.” Li Hanyi completed his sentence for him. This time, he no longer despised this somewhat unworthy disciple of his. Instead, he said in a soft voice, “Girls who are pretty all love to lie and cheat…”
“Teacher, why would you say that? Could it be that you were hurt by a lady before?” Lei Wujie instantly regretted the moment the words left his mouth. It was seldom that his teacher was in the mood to chat with him, notwithstanding the little praise he got for his Moon in Obscurity, Flowers at Daybreak, but that didn’t mean he could act so casually.
To his surprise, Li Hanyi didn’t flare up at all. Instead, he merely stood still, gripped down on Armored Glacier, and stayed silent with his head lowered.
“Teacher, I was wrong!” Lei Wujie hurriedly bowed to apologize.
“In three months, I’ll leave the mountain with you.” Li Hanyi suddenly raised his head. “I have a feeling that your teacher won’t last much longer.”
“Three months?” Lei Wujie nodded. “Alright, three months it is. We’ll have our duel then.”
“In three months, I’ll cross blows with you. And in three years, you’ll become a Sword Immortal. That’s the agreement between us.” Li Hanyi raised his sword suddenly and strode forward.
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Become a Sword Immortal in three years? Lei Wujie tried hard to remember when he ever made such an agreement with his teacher and he subconsciously rubbed his head. However, looking at Li Hanyi’s expression, he didn’t dare to probe any further. A Sword Immortal in three years…
Well, so be it. Lei Wujie laughed.
At the site of a large scenic river…
A white clothed youth sat beside the river as he hugged his Sword Magazine. A sigh escaped his mouth, “Lost again?”
The man known as one of the Four Citymasters, the Citymaster of Unparalleled City, silently stabbed the broken sword in his hand into the mud. “I lost. This time, I lost completely. I’m afraid the difference between Li Hanyi’s skill and mine is that of a tiny river compared to the Yangtze. I’ll never head over to Snow Moon City to challenge him again.”
“It’s fine. I’ll defeat him for you.” The youth laughed, showing off a row of pristine white teeth. The figure revealed himself to be precisely the kid who single handedly stopped Wuxin, Wuchan, Tang Lian, Xiao Se, and even Lei Wujie outside the Kingdom of Khotan. The teenager, Unparalleled.
“I’ve already come to terms that I won’t ever be a match for Li Hanyi in this lifetime. It’s enough that you can beat his successor. I met a boy during my trip. He said his name was Lei Wujie, I remember you seemed to have mentioned him before.” Song Yan sat down beside Unparalleled.
“That’s right. I’ve met him before. In that sandy place -its name keeps slipping me up so I can’t remember it anymore.” Unparalleled scratched his head and laughed, “Teacher, you should know that my memory isn’t the best.”
“You can’t even remember the name of a kingdom… yet you remember his name?” Song Yan chuckled as he replied.
“It’s because he is special. Everyone I met that day was special and I’ve etched them all into my memory. It was a pity that all of them were injured that day… Otherwise, it would have been a grand battle.” Unparalleled softly brushed his Sword Magazine.
“You’ll have that chance in the future. That’s because he is now the disciple of Li Hanyi, the Snow Moon Sword Immortal.”
Unparalleled’s eyes lit up in that instant. “He has stepped onto the way of the sword as well? Wasn’t he using fist techniques back then?”
Song Yan nodded. “That’s right. I tested out his martial arts several days ago when I drew my sword against him. He’s already showing signs of Li Hanyi’s tutelage, but he still has a way to go before he reaches your level. Yet when I told Li Hanyi that I had a disciple who would become a Sword Immortal in five years, he said that his disciple would only need three years to become one. In over twenty years I’ve known Li Hanyi, he has only accepted this one disciple. It seems like he has high hopes for his one and only disciple.”
Unparalleled murmured to himself for a second. Suddenly, he cracked open his Sword Magazine with a flourish. Nothing had changed inside -still the same Twelve Flying Swords and that fiery red sword laying silently inside. Using some strength, he slapped the Sword Magazine and out of the twelve swords, ten of them flew out, forming into a line in front of Unparalleled. He lightly tapped on them as he recited their names.
“Cloudshuttle, Gentlefrost, Desolate Wind, Crimson Leaf, Butterfly, Shadow Extinction, Executioner, Calamity Breaker, Jade Fortune, Perfection.”
“You can already control ten flying swords?” Yan Song exclaimed with both shock and joy.
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Unparalleled snickered and waved his sleeve. The ten swords immediately shot outwards, stirring up a giant wave on the lake. With another wave of his sleeve, the ten swords instantly fell silent, and a loud blast rang through the air! With a third wave of his sleeve, the ten swords stirred up all the water in the lake, causing waves after waves to billow outwards continuously. Suddenly, the last two swords in the Sword Magazine started to stir as if they were ready to shoot out into the skies.
Unparalleled laughed. “Since Lei Wujie can become a Sword Immortal in three years, I’ll become one in a single year!” He waved his hand again, and the ten swords returned to the Sword Magazine. Closing the Sword Magazine, Unparalleled stood up and left, Sword Magazine in hand.
Song Yan silently looked at the departing silhouette of Unparalleled’s back and sighed. “Whether or not Unparalleled City will be able to regain its former glory is all up to you now.”
When Unparalleled heard those words, he merely turned around and laughed, “Teacher, I never wanted to become the citymaster of Unparalleled City; I only wanted to hone my sword. But since Teacher wants me to do so, I’ll become the Citymaster then.”1