|Author: Zhou Nan Wood||Original Source: 8kana|
|Translator: CatatoPatch||English Source: Re:Library|
“Who are you?” Emperor Mingde slowly raised his head, sword tip still pressed against his throat.
The intruder remained silent, her sword inching ever so slightly forward.
“How dare you, Li Hanyi!” Jinxuan bellowed. “Do you think that you are now invincible just because you’ve become a sword immortal?!”
“So it’s the Second Citymaster of Snow Moon City then. We’ve not met before, but you seem familiar. Are you the daughter of that one below?”
Even though Li Hanyi came veiled, her identity was still exposed. She frowned but remained silent.
“What are your terms?” Emperor Mingde finally said the words. As the ruler of the lands, with tens of thousands of troops protecting him, and at least five experts of the Unfettered Heavens realm nearby, he still had no choice but to negotiate in the end.
It was then that Li Hanyi finally spoke. “Those two below, they are coming with me.”
Emperor Mingde shook his head. “Of those two below, only one of them can leave with you.”
A flash of anger crossed Li Hanyi’s face, and her sword hummed in response.
“Citymaster Li.” Qi Tianchen sighed. “Not everything can be solved with a sword in hand, please stay your hand for now.”
Li Hanyi narrowed her eyes. “Astrologian Qi. You wish to stop me?”
Whisk in hand, the astrologian slowly pushed away Li Hanyi’s sword. “Your parents sent you away from Revelation because they didn’t want you to get involved with the court, why waste their efforts now?”
To that, Li Hanyi merely scoffed. She stepped onto the execution platform, and with a mighty swing of her sword, forced the four Grand Eunuchs away before helping the seated Li Xinyue up. Following that, she eyed the ever-silent Prince Langya. An icy glint flashed across her eyes, and the heavy cuffs around the prince fell to the ground with a thud.
“Stop them!” Emperor Mingde stood up as he yelled.
Yet no one moved. Neither the Seven Grand Astrologians, nor the Five Grand Eunuchs, and not even the Wuji Staff wielding man moved. That was because they all saw the white-robed prince suddenly smile. It was a smile laced with equal parts sorrow and equal parts mockery. He walked up to the heavily wounded Li Xinyue, then bent down and whispered in her ears. Following that, he picked up Li Xinyue’s fallen sword and turned towards the emperor, speaking the last word he would ever say in this life.
Prince Langya shoved the sword right through his throat in a gruesome spurt of blood.
A spray of blood, nearly a meter high, dyed the execution grounds red, yet no one said a word. Emperor Mingde stumbled backwards, his body collapsing down onto his jade throne in the process. Soon after, the staff wielding man kept his weapon and left. From that day on, no one ever saw the White Tiger again. The Five Grand Eunuchs immediately called for the emperor’s carriage to fetch the emperor back to his palace. It was said that after returning to his palace, he went to the Hall of Serenity and just sat there for three days and three nights, neither eating nor drinking.
However, that wasn’t the end of the incident for those at the execution grounds. Nearly ten thousand soldiers of the Feathered Plume Legion rushed forward to encircle Li Hanyi, slowly pushing forward as they did so. With one sword, Li Hanyi threatened the life of an emperor. That was a crime against the heavens. Should they let her go now, Xie Lingyun would be charged with capital punishment as well.
Yet how many people could a Sword Immortal kill? In the past, Li Xinyue was able to slay a hundred with one sword stroke. As a Sword Immortal, how many thousands would Li Hanyi be able to slay in a fit of rage? As Xie Lingyun brooded, his army slowly advanced. It was then that Qi Tianchen walked down from the emperor’s platform and stood in between the soldiers and Li Hanyi. Xie Lingyun immediately signalled for the soldiers to halt. As the Head Astrologian of Revelation, Qi Tianchen’s official rank might not be that high, but he was definitely one of the most powerful figures in the entire city.
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“Trading six thousand heavy troops for a promise of His Majesty… General Xie, is it worth it?” That was all the man said.
Xie Lingyun hesitated for a moment, then finally barked the command, “Pass down my command, we’re returning back to camp!”
At this point, Li Xinyue was already on the verge of losing consciousness. Qi Tianchen walked over and gently tapped her on the forehead, transferring some of his true qi into her body. It was only then that Li Xinyue slowly awakened.
“What did Prince Langya tell you just now?”
Li Xinyue shook her head and kept silent.
Qi Tianchen asked no more. He slowly stood up and left the execution grounds.
“Mother, do we leave for Snow Moon City or the Sword Tomb?” Li Hanyi reached out to support her mother.
Li Xinyue shook her head. “The Lei Clan.”
Seated outside her grass hut, Li Hanyi continued reminiscing about her past. That year, she brought her mother back to the Lei Clan. Yet upon reaching the Lei Clan, her mother forbade her from entering, instead choosing to enter alone to meet someone. That person was Lei Mengchen, Lei Mengsha’s younger brother, in other words, Lei Wujie’s uncle. As for what was said that day, Li Hanyi never found out. Li Xinyue never went to see Lei Wujie either. All she knew was that when Li Xinyue left the compound, she handed her a token. Should the day come when Lei Wujie was worthy, she was to hand over this token to him.
It was a finely crafted token of pure gold, engraved with the image of a giant dragon breathing fire.
Finally, Li Xinyue returned to the Sword Tomb, where she spent the rest of her days. That day at the execution grounds had left her mortally wounded. She had only made it back because of the true qi Qi Tianchen left in her. In truth however, she didn’t have to die at all. If Qi Tianchen was able to save her for ten days, he naturally had the means to save her for ten years. Yet the dying words of Prince Langya were something she couldn’t tell Qi Tianchen. Thus, she spent her last days quietly atop the Sword Spirit Cliff where she first met her love, Lei Mengsha. Then, after ten days, she peacefully left the world.
The two of them met in the martial world. Back then, she was the successor of the Sword Tomb, and her heart was only filled with her sword. Yet Lei Mengsha had the welfare of the world in mind, thus she followed Lei Mengsha to the capital. In reality however, whether it was being a Guardian of Revelation, or a pillar of the empire, she cared naught for either of them. All she cared about was Lei Mengsha, yet that man wound up dead on the battlefield. In the end, she chose to side with Prince Langya, not at all caring whether or not she would have to sever ties with the emperor as a result. All that, simply because Prince Langya was Lei Mengsha’s one and only friend in life.
Li Hanyi fished out that token and gently caressed it. Like an ornate mirror, the gentle light of the moon reflected off the token and back on her hand. Suddenly, this aloof Sword Immortal felt a breeze blow past her. She turned around and found her disciple standing there. Her disciple who was also her younger brother, Lei Wujie, stood there quietly and at ease.
In the end, everything is predestined. Li Hanyi gently sighed before taking a few steps forward and placing the token in Lei Wujie’s hand.
“This is our mother’s token. From today onwards, it is yours.”
“You are the next Guardian of the East, one of the Four Guardians of Revelation, the Blue Dragon!”
Lei Wujie solemnly received the token. “Your son, Lei Wujie, hereby swears to uphold his mother’s duty.”