Changjing, Celestial Court.
Di Yiqiu brought three guests: He Xijin, Zhang Shuju, and Wu Zichou.
These three individuals were prominent figures in the immortal sect. He Xijin was talented, but due to an old injury to his tongue, he had difficulty speaking fluently and was always reticent. Zhang Shuju had a deep love for alcohol, but his wife detested it, so after their marriage, he proudly proclaimed himself as “Zhang Shuju, who never touches a drop of alcohol.”
Wu Zichou was, as his name suggested, short and ugly. He had a naturally villainous face, and the phrase “wicked and evil” perfectly described his appearance. In his youth, he fought against a lecherous thief to save a woman. The renowned master Dai Tianshuo, mistaking him for a villain, immediately broke one of his legs on the spot. As a result, he walked with a limp. However, fortune smiled upon him as Dai Tianshuo deeply regretted his impulsive act and took him as his disciple. Recognizing Wu Zichou’s extraordinary talent, Dai Tianshuo even married his beloved daughter to him.
“Alcohol, alcohol!” Zhang Shuju shouted as soon as he entered the door.
Wu Zichou snorted coldly and limped inside, cursing, “How long have you been holding back? You’re a spineless worm! If you ask me, you should send your wife back to her parents’ home and never let her set foot in your Zhang family again! Let’s see if she dares to meddle in your affairs anymore!”
“…” He Xijin sneered, showing his disdain.
As soon as these three individuals entered, Li Lu had already brought in the wine; seeing them, he knew they were craving it again.
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Sitting behind his desk, Di Yiqiu carefully contemplated for a while before earnestly saying, “I appreciate the favor from He Xijin’s wife. It is true that my household lacks a virtuous wife. However, at the moment, there is an issue I would like to ask the three esteemed seniors for help with. After resolving this matter, I will accompany the three seniors to the He residence and express my gratitude to the lady.”
This implies that everything is settled!
The Three Timid Immortals were delighted. He Xijin took the lead and said, “Tell us!”
Wu Zichou added, “We are brothers; why be polite? Just speak up!”
Zhang Shuju, still focused on drinking, nodded in agreement.
Di Yiqiu took out a list from the desk and handed it to the three of them, saying, “This is a recent procurement list from the various departments of the Bureau of Celestial Court. It was made by Xie Yuanshu in a personal capacity.” As the three men lowered their heads to examine the list, he added, “Under a private name.”
After looking at it for a while, the three of them murmured, “The Yuhu Immortal Sect is going to face a major event.”
Zhang Shuju couldn’t help but exclaim, “Is this turtle grandson buying these things to rebel?”
He Xijin remained silent but continued to stare at the list. Soon, he pointed to an item that absorbed cultivation and asked, “What about this?”
Di Yiqiu replied, “It was also specially procured by Xie Yuanshu.”
He Xijin slammed the wine jar onto the desk, saying, “Re…reb…rebellion…”
Zhang Shuju finished his sentence for him: “He’s rebelling.”
Only then did He Xijin continue, “He…he…he wants…”
Zhang Shuju added, “He wants to deal with someone?”
Di Yiqiu provided a shocking answer: “Preliminary estimates suggest that he intends to deal with Xie Hongchen.”
The three men were greatly astonished, and Wu Zichou asked,” What was that Xie Lingbi’s intention?”
Di Yiqiu shook his head and said, “Xie Lingbi has always valued Xie Hongchen, but he has been cold towards this son. Moreover, Xie Yuanshu’s cultivation is truly mediocre. Xie Lingbi isn’t that foolish.”
After thinking it over, He Xijin finally said, “Let’s…let’s…let’s…”
Wu Zichou, feeling dispirited, added, “Let’s take a look; won’t we know then?”
Di Yiqiu immediately stood up and bowed, saying, “I intended to ask the three esteemed seniors to stay for a few days and investigate the situation of the Yuhu Immortal Sect with me.”
He Xijin immediately responded, “St…st…still…call…call…”
This time, Zhang Shuju said, “Why still call us seniors? From now on, we can address each other as brothers!”
Di Yiqiu solemnly said, “I thank the three elder brothers.”
The three of them were filled with joy and made an agreement to head to the Yuhu Immortal Sect together.
Meanwhile, at the Yuhu Immortal Sect.
Xie Yuanshu had just awakened from the illusion. Huang Rang’s outer robe was still lying on the ground. Xie Yuanshu shook his head vigorously and said, “Ah Rang, you are truly enchanting. I feel like I’m in a dream.”
Huang Rang sighed and helped him put on his robe, saying, “I wonder how much time we have left together, Shu Lang.”
Xie Yuanshu patted her hand and said, “Don’t worry, I’ll go find my father right away.”
Huang Rang hurriedly said, “You can’t.”
Xie Yuanshu paused, clearly puzzled, and asked, “Why not?”
Huang Rang, accommodating his intelligence, explained slowly, “Shu Lang, Dark Thunder Peak is where the Ancestor has resided for a long time. He is very familiar with that place. Although you have internal strength from Hongchen now, I’m afraid you still can’t match him. How can I rest assured when you are putting yourself in such danger?”
Xie Yuanshu indeed asked, “Ah Rang, do you have any other plans?”
Huang Rang glanced at Xie Hongchen and said, “The Ancestor and Hongchen are known as master and disciple, but their relationship is like that of father and son. Shu Lang, why not send someone to invite the Ancestor, telling him that Hongchen’s cultivation has gone awry and he needs immediate rescue? When he arrives, he will surely save Hongchen first. At that moment, you can make your move.”
“Brilliant!” Xie Yuanshu praised.
“You!” Xie Hongchen’s head was spinning, unable to even utter a curse at Huang Rang. Huang Rang continued, “To make it easier, Shu Lang, you can set a trap on Xie Hongchen. Once the Ancestor intervenes to save him, he will immediately be ensnared. Then you can launch a surprise attack without any risk.”
Xie Yuanshu suddenly brightened up. He lifted Xie Hongchen and struck him unconscious with a palm strike. Then he took out a jade bottle, opened the stopper, and sprinkled the powder inside onto Xie Hongchen’s body.
The powder was fine and white, with no other scent. As it fell, it immediately merged with Xie Hongchen’s white clothes. However, Xie Yuanshu gave a warning: “This is a toxic powder refined from the venom of a viper. It is highly poisonous and must not be touched.”
“Viper venom?” Huang Rang had heard of this snake and knew it was a highly poisonous creature. But in recent years, this exotic beast has rarely been seen in the world. Unexpectedly, someone had obtained such a thing.
Xie Yuanshu nodded and said, “I’ll send someone to find my father.”
Huang Rang quickly said, “If the Ancestor sees me here, he will surely become suspicious. I should hide first.” Xie Yuanshu, still somewhat concerned, replied, “No worries, I have a treasure that can conceal your presence. You should hide in the secret room.”
After saying so, he took out a cloak from his storage bag of treasures and handed it to Huang Rang.
Huang Rang knew little about immortal treasures and was unaware of the name of this particular one. Nevertheless, she accepted it and draped it over herself. As she fastened the cloak around her neck, she unintentionally caught sight of the seal on it — “Di Yiqiu.”
It’s him again.
Seeing her examine it, Xie Yuanshu couldn’t help but sneer, “The Celestial Court has produced numerous exceptional treasures in recent years, most of which I acquired. But the old man thinks I’m just idling away my time. Today, I will show him what I’m capable of!”
I really want to witness you personally make Xie Lingbi die of grief! Huang Rang smiled slyly and stepped back, saying, “I will patiently await good news from Shu Lang.”
As expected, Xie Yuanshu left and sent someone to invite Xie Lingbi.
As the two peaks were not far apart, it didn’t take long for Xie Lingbi to arrive in a hurry. When Xie Yuanshu saw him, he was still somewhat afraid, but he put aside his previous arrogance. His voice trembled as he spoke, “Father, Father… come quickly and see Hongchen!”
Xie Lingbi swiftly approached the bed, and with just one glance, he saw that Xie Hongchen’s eyes had been severely injured!
Immediately scanning the surroundings, Xie Lingbi became suspicious. Xie Yuanshu grew anxious and said, “Father, please save our sect leader!”
However, Xie Lingbi’s thoughts were not so simple.
He immediately asked, “Why are you here? Has anyone been to the Yeyun Hall today?” Xie Yuanshu panicked, his mind in disarray. Xie Lingbi stared at his inept son, growing even more suspicious, and questioned, “Speak up! Why are you so flustered?!”
Caught in a state of panic, Xie Yuanshu didn’t know how to respond. Should he take action now?!
But even he understood very well that Xie Hongchen’s cultivation, which had been transferred to him, had already been somewhat depleted. Moreover, using someone else’s power, he was afraid he couldn’t directly confront his own father.
As he hesitated, suddenly, Huang Rang burst out and kneeled before Xie Lingbi!
Xie Lingbi, seeing her there, immediately became furious and angrily asked, “Why are you here?”
Huang Rang appeared seemingly frightened, but her gaze lowered, fixed on Xie Lingbi’s shoe tip—Finally, I see you again,Elder Ancestor. She greeted him in her mind while her words became frantic: “Elder Ancestor, please forgive me! Today, HongChen, for some unknown reason, believed someone’s rumors about me and Big Brother… It’s all unclear! He insisted on confronting me and Big Brother, and then a conflict broke out.”
She sobbed, “I witnessed his rage, and my instinct was to protect Big Brother and escape first. But he accused me of showing favoritism towards Big Brother, even though I explained that Big Brother was being falsely accused. However, his anger got the better of him, and he launched an attack on Big Brother. I… I knew that Big Brother was no match for him, and I didn’t dare call for help, fearing that our family’s disgrace would be exposed. All I could do was step forward to prevent him from acting impulsively. Unexpectedly, in his fury, he spat out blood. Big Brother couldn’t react in time and injured his eyes…”
“Indeed, it’s a calamity!” Xie Lingbi struck out with a palm. Huang Rang felt a tremendous force in her chest but didn’t feel the pain, as she was already thrown against the wall.
She lay on the ground, blood trickling from her nose, but she endured without coughing, appearing lifeless. Xie Yuanshu couldn’t stop Xie Lingbi. After hearing this account, Xie Lingbi didn’t have time to think further. He rushed forward to support Xie Hongchen and immediately began examining his pulse. A subtle dust rose from Xie Hongchen’s body, unnoticed by him.
However, with just one pulse, he immediately realized something was wrong!
Xie Hongchen’s cultivation had almost depleted entirely! He abruptly raised his head, about to ask a question, when Xie Yuanshu exerted all his strength to push out a palm strike! He knew that the outcome hinged on this move and truly exerted all his effort!
Xie Lingbi could have blocked this strike initially. No matter how powerful the venom of the viper snake was, it wouldn’t take effect so quickly on him.
However, he underestimated Xie Yuanshu’s strength! With lingering doubts, he naturally wouldn’t strike his own son to death with a single palm. Therefore, the force he put into countering Xie Yuanshu’s strike was only about thirty percent—based on his understanding of Xie Yuanshu, this much force would be enough to severely injure the troublemaker.
But at this moment, Xie Yuanshu possessed not only his own cultivation but also eighty percent of Xie Hongchen’s internal energy! He unleashed his full power with a palm strike, creating a thunderous sound. The bed collapsed, Xie Lingbi’s internal organs shook, and blood stained the corners of his mouth. He was preparing to gather his energy again when suddenly he saw scales emerging on his hand—one after another, fine and dense—green snake scales.
He stood frozen for a moment, and Xie Yuanshu struck again with another palm. The palms of father and son collided, and Xie Lingbi’s back slammed against the palace wall, disrupting his internal energy. He spoke with disorganized internal breathing.
“You absorbed Hongchen’s cultivation!”
“Hongchen… Hahaha.” Xie Yuanshu laughed bitterly, “I am your biological son! Your only flesh and blood ! But why can you only see Xie Hongchen in your eyes?!”
“You wicked child!” Xie Lingbi’s anger was about to explode. “He has a solid foundation and profound cultivation, and your talent is not even a fraction of his. How can you compare yourself to him?! Moreover, he is generous and pure-hearted. As the sect leader, would he mistreat you?! For so many years, why do you think no one has mentioned your shameful deeds?! It’s all because he is covering for you.”
“Enough! Shut up!” Xie Yuanshu raged, “Your eyes can only see the countless advantages of Xie Hongchen!” He became even more ruthless in his attacks, intending to kill Xie Lingbi.
However, Xie Lingbi had said so much precisely to buy time. In his hand, a snow-white jade ruyi emitted a brilliant light. In a moment, a defensive formation had been erected.
The formation shone with a clear light, and Xie Lingbi stood within it, his disheveled hair and blood-stained robes indicating that he was also seriously injured. He angrily said, “Rebellious child, you’re truly seeking death!” He spoke these words, but deep down, Xie Lingbi still harbored some fatherly affection for his son.
He exerted all his strength in an attack. Xie Yuanshu’s foundation was already weak to begin with, and he could succeed through a surprise attack. But now that his plan had been exposed, how could he still be a match for Xie Lingbi?
A loud bang resounded, and Yeyun Hall shook violently. Xie Yuanshu fell to the ground, while Xie Lingbi also spewed out a mouthful of blood. Both father and son were heavily injured.
Such a commotion couldn’t be concealed by minor protective artifacts like sound barriers. Outside the hall, Xie Shaochong, Nie Qinglan, and others had already heard the disturbance and rushed over at full speed!
“Elder Ancestor? Sect Leader?” Xie Shaochong tried calling out.
Xie Lingbi didn’t want the family disgrace to be exposed, and Xie Yuanshu had clearly lost the ability to fight again. He commanded, “Step back!”
Xie Shaochong and the others were concerned, but they didn’t dare to defy his order.
Xie Lingbi dismissed the formation and walked slowly towards Xie Yuanshu. He crouched down, grabbed a handful of Xie Yuanshu’s hair, and lifted it, forcing him to raise his head. Xie Yanshu’s body hadn’t yet adapted to such powerful internal energy.
Now he was gathering all his strength, but he had also suffered heavy injuries and was truly in a bad state.
Xie Lingbi’s gaze was fiery, as if he wanted to burn a hole through him. “Who instigated you to do such a foolish thing?”
He knew his son very well, and considering his temperament, the possibility of Xie Hongchen plotting against him was slim. But throughout it all, he had never doubted Huang Rang—Huang Rang was not skilled in combat, and his cultivation was inferior to even that of an outer disciple. Xie Lingbi considered her insignificant, so why would he suspect her?
Xie Yuanshu also didn’t believe it was Huang Rang who instigated him. Gasping for breath, he said, “You’ve always favored Xie Hongchen. How could you possibly understand my feelings?”
“Your feelings?!” Xie Lingbi exploded in anger. “Your own abilities are lacking, and you indulge in lust. Can the entire sect rely on you?!”
Xie Yuanshu became even angrier and shouted, “That’s why you rely on Xie Hongchen! A wild seed you picked up at the foot of the mountain! You don’t care about any family bonds; you only care about who is useful to you!”
“If I didn’t care about family bonds, you would have been nothing by now…”
Xie Lingbi’s words came to a sudden halt—Huang Rang was lying behind him, appearing to be dead.
But in her hands were two thin needles, inserted into Xie Lingbi’s lower back. Xie Lingbi felt a slight numbness in his body and tried to retaliate against Huang Rang. However, all his movements froze in an instant, and he suddenly lost control of his body.
He made several attempts to exert force, but his body seemed disconnected from him, showing no response.
Xie Lingbi’s pupils gradually dilated as he suddenly understood what it was—the Soul Binding Bone Fixing Needle!
Because the needles were in his lower back, his body was still able to tremble slightly. But it was useless. His eyes widened, saliva dripped from the corners of his mouth, and just as he was about to move, he collapsed to the ground.
Huang Rang tried to sit up, but her attempts failed. She began to cough up a large amount of blood, but as she watched Xie Lingbi lying on the ground, his limbs twitching lightly, she felt an incredible sense of satisfaction.
Xie Yuanshu crawled to Xie Lingbi’s side, still trembling with fear. After a while, he asked, “Is he really…”
Huang Rang opened her mouth to speak, but blood choked her before any words could come out. She forcefully vomited blood mixed with fragments of her internal organs. She could only point to the corner of the wall, where an umbrella was still placed. It was the artifact personally forged by Di Yiqiu, used to absorb the cultivation of others.
Xie Yuanshu suddenly understood her meaning and immediately walked towards the umbrella.
“Hahaha, Elder Ancestor!” Huang Rang tugged at Xie Lingbi’s clothes, laughing continuously like a vengeful ghost that had come back to life. As she laughed, her blood dripped onto Xie Lingbi’s body like beads, one after another.