At first, a small glimmer of light appeared in a part of the residence. Soon however, the entire formation started to move strangely. The ground below their feet shook back and forth, the pieces of rock adorning the fake hills rolled down with loud thumps and plopped into the pond with deep, almost chest-reverberating splashes.
Mu Sheng’s footsteps suddenly froze. He turned his empty but dark pupils to look at the part of the residence that was lit up.
Someone had entered the heart of the formation.
The moment this thought floated up in his mind, he immediately saw Liu Fuyi and Mu Sheng, who had both come rushing out at the noise.
The two of them held their dharma tools in their hands as the wind went wild with messing up their hair. The two of them walked towards him with a fast pace but when they saw him, were also similarly frozen in place.
In an instant, all the color left Mu Sheng’s face.
He couldn’t get out a single word. He spun around as fast as he could as he returned to his room, slamming the door as he pushed it out of the way.
The canopy had been moved to the side and the bed was empty. The wind he brought in with him blew about the yellow paper on the table and when he walked over to take a look, there were ten of the reverse talismans he’d written and stuffed into her sachet on the table. They were barely, and rather indistinctly, placed on the table in the shape of a slight grin.
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Gp vbl uswvb zssjle esod yv vbl vyczl bl pweeldzu qlzv ekggu, yde bkp cseu pbssj.
Rv oyp sdzu qsa y pbsav kdpvydv clqsal bl altykdle bkp okvp. Tl bye cyalzu awpble swv vbl essa ytykd clqsal Nkw Wwuk tayccle bsze sq bkx.
“Gb Fbldt, Gb Fbldt…” Nkw Wwuk alrlyvlezu vakle vs vyzj vs bkx, vaukdt vs tlv bkx vs nsxl cynj vs bkp pldplp. Mbl sdzu sdl xkppkdt qasx vblka taswr sq qswa oyp Ykysxkys. Tl yde Yw Zys nswze twlpp obyv bye byrrldle. Tl tayccle bkp pbswzela czyel yde wple y talyv yxswdv sq qsanl vs jllr bkx kd rzynl: “Nkpvld vs xl.”
Yw Fbldt’p lulp bye vwadle vlaakqukdtzu czynj yv vbkp rskdv. Tl aykple bkp lulp vs zssj yv bkx okvbswv xyjkdt y pswde. Mbl tygl bl pbsv yv bkx oyp sdl vbyv clprsjl sq vbl lxrvu nyzx clqsal vbl naygle pvsax.
Nkw Wwuk’p hsknl pbssj y zkvvzl clnywpl sq bkp dlahlp: “Mbl xsxldv psxlsdl ldvlap, vbl qsaxyvksd okzz nzspl. Ls sdl nyd tlv kd yqvlaoyaep.”
Lsv sdzu oswze kv ralhldv rlsrzl qasx ldvlakdt, xlalzu yrrasynbkdt kv nswze nywpl vblx vs cl akrrle kdvs rklnlp cu vbl oyhlp sq ldlatu akrrzkdt qasx vbl nldvla sq vbl qsaxyvksd. Maukdt vs yrrasynb kv oyp ds zsdtla fwpv vaukdt vs vbaso yoyu uswa zkql, kv oyp ynvkhlzu vaukdt vs pllj swv elyvb.
Mblu bye yzalyeu zspv Ykysxkys, vblu nswzed’v zlv Yw Fbldt ts yp olzz.
“Nlv ts sq xl.” Yw Fbldt pvyale kdvs prynl: “R nyd ldvla.”
Liu Fuyi raised his brows.
Mu Sheng’s cold gaze swept over his face and his pupils darkened. It was as if something had already shattered when his voice came out again but with a tone that was like a knife scraping on bone, both soft yet sharp: “Ling Miaomiao likes you so much, how do you have the heart to watch her die huh?”
He lightly, extremely lightly, lowered his lashes: “Or, you want to cripple these two hands?”
Liu Fuyi was just about to say something when Mu Yao interrupted him: “Let him go.”
Water filled her eyes, enough to the point that when she blinked, a tear flowed down her face. She wept silently as she turned to say to Liu Fuyi: “If it were me in there instead, would you want Ah Sheng to stop you?”
Liu Fuyi’s expression changed and he released hand. The youth brushed past him like a gust of wind.
Far behind him, he heard Liu Fuyi’s voice call out for him. It felt like as if he didn’t shout out the words, he would never have the opportunity to say the words again.
“Miaomiao has never liked me.”
“The first day she left with us, when she drunk all that wine on boat while it drifted down the winding river… the name she called out was yours.”
Mu Sheng’s feet froze. Then, he rushed towards the core of the formation with even greater speed. His black clothes fluttered just like a banner in the wind, making sharp sounds. He was like a swift bird, rushing towards the center of the formation while the ground and skies shook.
“I am a petty person all things considered. When I encounter a difficult question, I don’t dare reply lightly. However, if the people I love or those close to me are in the midst of the gauntlet, I’m willing to die. So that they can live.”
“I’ve been waiting for you for a long time, Ziqi.”
Bright red colors climbed up the corners of his eyes like vines. It was just like the empty act of drawing in the air with a drawing brush in hand, adding a bizarre coat to the face of the person being drawn. It seemed like a hint of a fabricated smile had been drawn onto his face as well.
So. It seems like from the start, she had always been waiting for him.
“Warning: Character Ling Yu’s database has suffered damage and data is being lost. May the host please…”
“Warning: Estimated attacks are predicted to cause great levels of damage. Host, please prepare carefully…”
“Buzz—–” There was a sharp droning noise, very much similar to the ear-piercing sound a boiling kettle of water would make. Or perhaps it was just the blistering gust rushing past the hidden room. Soon, the deafening sound of the earth shaking was all she could hear.
The annoying and loud sound of the warnings suddenly came to a stop. Ling Miaomiao blankly raised her head to find a small ball of light that seemed like it had been ripped apart by someone. There was a long and narrow split down the middle, the light that started to suddenly pour into it stung her eyes.
Ling Miaomiao raised her arm to block the light as tears beaded in her eyes from the strong stimulation. She felt her sight become lightly blurry.
Soon, she felt something fall upon her hair and shoulders. She rubbed her eyes and looked up to see countless talismans floating down from the sky like an angel scattering petals up above. They floated in front of her, the blood red characters written on them wriggling as they passed her. The brush strokes were still wet, the ink not having completely dried up yet. They made long driplines down the length of the paper… just like someone shedding tears of blood.
A dark shadow followed the edge of the split and quickly plummeted down to her side.
Ling Miaomiao widened her eyes and their eyes met.
Despite having known Mu Sheng for so many days and nights, she had never seen the current expression on his face before.
His face was pale, pale white and his lips completely devoid of any color. His entire body was soaked with cold sweat. His eyes were akin to two points of darkness, silently watching her just like a young demon come from the underworld.
“Are you trying to get yourself killed?” His lips moved slightly as he spoke in a low voice: “Fortunately, I don’t plan on living anymore either.”
Ling Miaomiao felt her mind go completely blank; The wind raised up her sash and it lightly touched her face.
The waves of energy from the pill refinement continued unceasingly.
He looked at her and paused for a moment. Suddenly, a stream of blood slipped out the corner of his mouth.
There had never been a precedent where someone managed to break into the center of the formation. He was willing to reach his goal no matter the method nor how vicious he had to be to himself. He was already suffering the backlash of his spells.
Ling Miaomiao looked at him with a hint of despair in her gaze. Her body shook violently, and she started to cry. She had been weeping spasmodically before but now, she was crying her heart out as she was crumbling apart.
He meaninglessly wiped off the blood seeping out of the corner of his mouth. Then he raised his head to look at the tiny entrance at the formation heart. The two of them were like frogs at the bottom of a well: They could only watch the tiny hope far, far up in the sky above them. Yet, they could never reach it.
He picked her up with one smooth movement and forcefully pulled her into his embrace. At nearly the exact same moment, a new wave of attacks fell down. The entire formation heart’s space seemed to mutate and twist.
She no longer heard any more warnings from the system.
The attacks after that… all landed on his body.
He was hugging Ling Miaomiao so tightly in his embrace that she couldn’t move a muscle. Even breathing was laborious. Her spasming fingers grabbed and scratched against the clothes on his back. Her fingers tightened and loosened continuously, causing her palms to be covered with cold sweat: “Let go, let go….”
Mu Sheng was silent as he continued to hug her tightly. The veins on the corners of his eyes bulged monstrously and each time he endured an attack, they trembled and shuddered. Yet, he made not a single sound.
There was a crack, a lull in the pill refinement and he finally loosened his grip. His ice-cold fingers grabbed her face.
“Miaomiao…” He said, eyes already somewhat fading. His fingers tightly cupped against her ears as he rubbed her face a little. Once her face became a little hot from his fingers, his entire body started to shake terribly, as if he could no longer control his body from shaking intensely anymore.
He lowered his eyelashes, and his mien became abnormally yielding: “I want to hear… hear you say… that you like me.”
Ling Miaomiao choked for a moment as she grabbed his hands. Both of her eyes still stung while she choked back her sobs.
“Mhm… I like… I like you.”
“I like… you.”
I like you.
The horizon was once again suffused with a layer of purplish red fog. It seemed to billow forth like giant waves, surging out from the center of the formation and going up towards the sky. They covered the skies and the sun, immediately dimming the world around them.
Due to the abnormal movements of the formation heart, the entire formation seemed to become more… irascible. A sudden trembling of the earth burst forth and all the creatures of the earth and beneath, all of the bugs and the birds above felt uneasy and rushed about chaotically. They seemed to have lost their sense of direction as birds flew into trees and cried out loud with their raspy voices.
Liu Fuyi and Mu Yao stood with their backs to each other, doing their absolute best to resist the effects of the pill refining. Liu Fuyi’s back was completely soaked with sweat and large droplets of sweat dripped down Mu Yao’s forehead. Both of their faces were as pale as parchment.
“Yao’er.” He suddenly turned around with all of the crazed chaos going on around them. His dark hair floated up around him, the wind blowing his voice in all directions and only arriving at her ear sounding like a whisper: “Do you remember when you asked, what is the purpose of living on?”
Yao’er’s lips trembled a bit, hesitating for a moment: “Responsibility?”
The obviously still young demon hunter shook his head lightly. A compassionate smile danced on his lips. He suddenly spun the talisman on his hand around and threw it directly at the formation heart.
At the same moment, his waist suffered greatly as it lost the protection that had been there a moment ago, causing him to spurt out blood involuntarily.
“Fuyi….” Mu Yao’s eyes widened.
The wind blew his hair up and he extended both hands into a half-hugging position. Countless talismans seemed to streak out of his palms, towards the formation heart, like a murder of crows.
Mu Yao’s pale pupils watched them fly in the direction of the formation heart in amazement. Suddenly, she understood.
She also loosened her fingers, ignoring the tumultuous pain and anguish she felt to throw all she had, with all of her strength, towards the glowing center of the formation. For a moment, the sky was filled with talismans, lighting up with countless streaks of light. The talismans were just like a rain of arrows that blotted out the sun whereas the two of them were like the generals standing on the walls firing the arrows.
She completely tossed away the notion of breaking out of there anymore.
If she couldn’t save the comrades that should’ve been standing beside her from the formation heart, they might as well all be buried here together.
“Are you afraid of dying?” Liu Fuyi asked.
Mu Yao shook her head: “I’m not afraid.”
On the contrary, in her entire life she had never tried being so crazy or felt satisfied with her decision like this.
“Me too.” Liu Fuyi smiled as he wiped the blood off the corner of his lips. Then, he looked forward.
“Yao’er, to live is to leave behind no regrets.”
The Nine Mysterious Demon Restraining Pagoda started to tremble. Red light shot out from the small windows, as if it could sense that its owner life was endangered despite being placed within the small wooden dressing table. Just like a small chick pecking its way out of its shell, its bindings could no longer stop the energies and started to split apart.
The Resentful Banshee was calmly sitting in the center room of the residence. Both of her hands were tightly clasped onto the edge of the table. The veins of her arm were clearly visible, and tears of blood filled her eyes.
Mu Sheng had forcefully ripped apart the formation heart once. It had no other choice but to swallow the two of them. Then, it had been attacked by innumerable talismans. The formation heart had been disrupted and now the energy within the formation heart was in chaos. She had already lost control and even if she was still the controller of the formation, she could no longer stop the formation from desiring to swallow the earth and sky.
If this were to continue, she would also be buried here.
At that very moment, the Nine Mysterious Demon Restraining Pagoda started its movements again and this time, an enormous amount of energy gushed out in all directions. She couldn’t move a muscle from her position sitting on the stool. It was like she had suddenly suffered a stroke, her body twitched repeatedly as red and black darkness swirled and intertwined within her eyes.
“I heard that after a person dies, they have to cross the bridge of forgetfulness. And, when if you cross while holding hands, you’ll still be husband and wife in your next life.”
Mu Sheng grabbed her hand and pressed it against his ice-cold cheek. His eyelashes brushed against her fingertips His voice was already faint, yet he still persisted in speaking in a soft tone: “Today, we both die here together as one. Are you going to wait for me at the end of the bridge?”
Ling Miaomiao choked on her sobs. She didn’t dare to move, afraid that the moment she moved he would spurt out a large mouthful of blood: “I will.”
The young man raised his head, his black pupils still staring at her, and maintained this position for a long moment. Then, the corner of his lips curled up by the slightest iota. It almost looked like he was laughing at her.
With this… almost smile on his face, he slowly lowered his eyes: “They’re all just… made up stories used to trick people.”
“What?” Ling Miaomiao subconsciously asked.
His gaze landed on her with great tenderness within them. He softly caressed her hair until his hand rested behind her ear. It seemed like he was no longer smiling: “There is only one life. There is no such thing as a next life.”
His movements paused here as he looked into her eyes as if he was making a solemn promise to her: ”I won’t let you die.”
A stream of blood dripped out the side of his mouth. Suddenly, he pulled her up and kissed her on the lips, his wet blood rubbing against her skin.
He reluctantly opened his tightly shut eyes and used his trembling fingers to evenly coat her lips with his blood. He smiled: “This way… I can recognize you more easily.”
Ling Miaomiao didn’t respond in time as she screamed, trying to grab his hand. His fingertips were already wrapped around his hairband. He tugged abruptly and managed to rip the hairband off.
The white hairband was thrown away from his hand. It seemed to turn into a real white butterfly as it floated away in the wind.
His long, pitch-black hair slowly unfurled and scattered everywhere, covering his ears.
Immediately after, the ends of his hair curled up and floated up into the air. In an instant, they grew until they could reach his ankles.
Eye-piercing red light burst forth. Half-demonic energy poured down just like water being sucked into a hole. The entire formation shook fiercely and the silk-cloth looking barrier suddenly gained a few more gaping holes in it. It looked like it was about to be completely broken apart at any moment.
As for the small piece of the sky they could see above their head, it had already become utterly replaced by a dense, bloody red color.
The dressing table was shaking violently, making soft ‘thud’ noises constantly. The Nine Mysterious Demon Restraining Pagoda was letting out a glaring red light, burning as hot as a blazing inferno.
The Resentful Banshee’s flickering pupils suddenly filled with despair for a moment, causing them to momentarily become pure black orbs of confusion.
Duanyang suddenly looked up into the mirror despite the dressing table trembling erratically with great vigor. The person in the mirror was also shaking so much that she could barely make out her face in the mirror.
Heavens above, where in the world was this? Is this an earthquake?!
She placed her fingers on the mirror, flabbergasted. As she looked at the unfamiliar face in the mirror, she questioned whether or not she was just in a dream: “What happened to me? Why did I become that woman?”
In her extremely alarmed state, she looked down to see the Demon Restraining Pagoda glowing with golden light.
Ah? Wasn’t this Brother Liu’s pagoda?
She felt a hint of unease and subconsciously reached out to grab it.
However, who knew that instant her fingers touched the Demon Restraining Pagoda, the entire formation would let out an eardrum shatteringly loud ‘boom’. It felt like everything had blown up in that one moment. The Nine Mysterious Demon Restraining Pagoda’s golden light erupted as it flew up into the sky.
Duanyang felt as if something heavy weighing on her body was suddenly tossed aside, feeling lighter and more comfortable all of a sudden.
The hoarse, twisted screech of a woman ripped through the sky one last time. Then, the incorporeal suppression dissipated.
The youth’s long hair fluttered in the wind endlessly. The corners of his eyes had turned scarlet while his dark pupils bespoke of evil and cruelty. All living creatures that encountered him would be turned into dust. Other than Ling Miaomiao who sat peacefully before him.
Within the empty void of his eyes there was something other than killing intent. Somehow, there was the final shred of his sober mind resisting.
His hands were completely stained with blood as he caressed Ling Miaomiao’s face softly. He widened his eyes as two large drops of eye-catchingly bright red blood flowed down his face and cheek, drawing a long line to the ground. It was a truly strange scene to behold.
“After I die, you have to be faithful to me for three years.”
A snowy day. The night of the new year. Catching small birds. Building snowmen.
Throughout his entire life, what he had always been looking for was far beyond his reach. Yet, it was constantly on his mind.
The broken barrier of the formation heart seemed to turn into feather-like shards. They slowly fluttered and spun as they fell down from the sky, completely encircling the two in the middle. The sky slowly clearly up, inch by inch, finally letting white light through.
“If you dare… fall in love with someone else, I…”
His pitch-black pupils suddenly spun for a moment before they froze.
Unfortunately, he was no longer of the world.
“Ding—- Congratulations host, favorability with character【Mu Sheng】has reached 100%. Target has been successfully reached.”
“Ding—- Host 【Ling Miaomiao】has perfectly completed all of the missions within 《Demon Hunter》”
Acclaim and applause. Waves and the wind. Funneled into her ear all at once.
TLN: And that’s it. The end… not really. There are still a few more extras talking about what happens afterwards 🙂
Honestly, I cried while translating this chapter. It was tumultuous yet somewhat fitting ending in my opinion. The main characters all show up in the end and somehow Duanyang gets her own sort of ‘redemption’ moment by accidentally dealing the final blow to the Resentful Banshee. Mu Sheng… ah Mu sheng. I can’t help but relate but on the exact opposite spectrum ;0. The ‘final’ words of Liu Fuyi also resonated a lot with me. What else is the purpose of living other than to make sure you leave with no regrets? I hope everyone who reads this also gains some perspective into their own lives~
Happy Midsummer Festival! Maybe should’ve posted this a few days earlier during it but didn’t think of that until now…
The last couple of chapters have been all translated by Z so go give her some love~ She deserves it I definitely couldn’t have gotten to this point by myself.
Cough cough, I was supposed to post the chapter earlier, but I forgot to schedule it so it’s coming out now…