Ostentatious Zhao Yao by Jiu Lu Fei Xiang
《招摇》 作者: 九鹭非香
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The day I died was when the ancient demonic weapon, Wan Jun Sword, reappeared in the world.
In Jiang Hu, there was already a legend, it said that the person who obtained the Wan Jun Sword would gain the supreme position in the Demon Realm, acquiring the Demon King’s throne.
I had been a demon all my life, all the achievements that I should have gotten, I have achieved. Just one measly step away, I had longed to win the title of the Demon Supreme, then henceforth, unify the Demon Realm that had been divided for thousands of years. I would gain the power to overturn the entire world, and order the common people, no one would dare to disobey!
Therefore, when the Wan Jun Sword was about to emerge, I hurriedly led my Wan Lu Sect’s disciples to the Millennium Sword Tomb. At that place, there were already cultivators from the demon path slaughtering one another. Naturally, I was disinclined to even take a single look, and ordered the younger generation to help me hold back the rear. Then by myself, I entered the Sword Tomb.
Recalling that moment now, I actually made two mistakes at that time. The first mistake was not paying attention to the celestial energy concealed beneath the chaotic energy inside the Sword Tomb. The second mistake was ignoring Ugly Little Monster, who had followed me into the Sword Tomb.
In fact, Ugly Little Monster had a name, it was also a name that I had given him — Mo Qing.
It was because when I met him for the first time, he was injured from head to toe, from greenish-black to purplish-violet. There were also inky, pitch-black scars on his face, one after the other like some mysterious talisman. It made his face particularly ugly and scary.
But as someone who cultivated the demon path, I would never be afraid of these things.
At that moment, he was embracing the ice-cold body of his mother in his arms, and standing in front of him were the patriarchs of the Ten Great Influential Clans, who were celestial cultivators. The patriarchs called him the Demon King’s son.
I, however, did not think that this was correct.
In the Demon Realm, the Demon King that we publicly recognized had already died one thousand eight hundred years ago. After the old Demon King died, the entire Demon Realm had split up and fell apart. Warlords seized territories, and none of which were done orthodoxly. Besides, these righteous people, when they captured one demonic underling with a dozen men or so, they would say that he was the Demon King. So according to their logic, there must be thousands upon thousands of Demon Kings in the world.
Moreover, the most excessive was!
If calculating according to their rules, then even if there were thousands upon thousands of demon leaders queuing up, it still would not be my turn because at that time, I did not have anyone under my command.
I was quite unconvinced, therefore, I planned to teach them a lesson and let them know that even if I did not have anyone under my command, I could still be very powerful.
So during that year, I stood in front of Mo Qing blocking and ridiculing those several hundred people for bullying the family of an orphan and a widowed mother, and then, by myself, I fought with those Ten Great Influential Clans.
Later generations declared that the fight made the heaven cloudy and the earth gloomy, the rivers dried and the lakes drained. Although the reality was not as bombastic as they say, but it was indeed the battle that helped me establish my name among the demon path.
With my entire body covered in blood, I rescued Mo Qing from danger. Since then, my notoriety spread far and wide, and everyone knew that on Chen Ji Mountain there was a demoness who could single-handedly fight against the Ten Great Influential Clans. Then people came to rely on my help, they came in an endless stream.
I established Wan Lu Sect, accepting an upwards of a thousand disciples. As for Mo Qing, who was rescued in that fight, I did not have time to take care of him because I was so busy, so I just appointed him a master. His master said that he did not have any talent in demonic cultivation, therefore, he was sent to guard the mountain gate.
After that, I rarely heard news about him, until the moment before I died did I see him enter my eyes again. By then, he had already become a young man, but the hideous black patterns on his face were as before, had never faded away, making him an ugly monstrous-looking young man…
That day in the Sword Tomb, it was unknown how long the cultivators of the celestial sects had been there to arrange the battle arrays in order to eradicate the well-known demon leaders. However, they did not foresee that my Wan Lu Sect’s strength was so powerful. Just with the disciples under my command, they immediately resisted everyone in the demon path, and only I entered the Sword Tomb.
In the Sword Tomb, before the emergence of the Wan Jun Sword, I was engrossed in suppressing the surging sword energy, evil energy and resentment energy that accumulated over hundreds of years due to humans sacrificed to the sword. While those celestial cultivators who had been lurking in wait for a long time, suddenly attacked.
I originally did not place these people in my eyes, but I really did not anticipate that the aura in the Sword Tomb would be so powerful.
I shattered the celestial cultivators’ battle arrays, but could not guard against the murderous aura within the Sword Tomb. So I was ruthlessly stabbed, and with my last remaining strength, I finally suppressed the aura in the Sword Tomb and hid in a corner. I just needed to wait for the emergence of the Wan Jun Sword, then I would seize the opportunity to get it, and could rule the land under heaven.
However, those celestial sect disciples, whose battle arrays got shattered, had not left yet. They stayed in the Sword Tomb, searching for my whereabouts. At this very moment, I had no more strength to fight them. The wound on my neck caused by the murderous aura in the Sword Tomb was so deep that the bone could be seen; nearly chopped my neck in half, making it difficult for me to speak.
I was cautiously hiding in the crevice of a rock. Suddenly, I felt my neck heating up, my body stiffening all over, and when I was about to protest, someone covered my mouth. I raised my head to take a look, and saw a face with black scars throughout, it was actually Mo Qing.
When he saw that I recognized him, he immediately released me at once. Then he simply covered my neck with his hand to help me staunch the bleeding. I looked at him, and saw that he could not hide the worry in his eyes, as his eyes shifted back and forth:
“Mo Qing.” I called out his name with my hoarse voice, “Do you like me?”
True, this question of mine was asked unexpectedly, but the deep concern in his eyes was not something a normal disciple would show. Thinking about it, I could only think of one possibility.
As expected, after I asked him this question, he glanced at me like a mute, speechless and quiet, but the hand at his side slowly clenched for a moment. I smiled, clearly understanding his action, gazing at his face completely covered in black scars. An untalented demon cultivator, who quietly followed me into the Sword Tomb, was definitely waiting to help me at the most crucial moment, making me remember him; because apart from this method, he could not appear in front of my eyes.
I gazed at him, smiling amiably: “Mo Qing, since you like me, you certainly don’t want to let me die here, right?”
He looked back at me solemnly, then dropped his eyes and stared intently at the small silver mirror hanging on my neck. In the mirror, it reflected his face with black scars throughout. I did not know what he was thinking, tentatively assuming that he wanted me to bestow him something, so I made a move to take off the silver mirror: “I will give you this silver mirror as a trust token. If today, you can protect me safely to leave this place, in the future, I will certainly protect you before the entire Demon Realm, where you can turn up your nose at warlords vying for supremacy.”
I had already forgotten where this little silver mirror came from, nor did I know what its function was. I usually just thought that it was pretty to wear, so I simply continued to wear it, I absolutely had no hesitation in giving it away.
However, Mo Qing silently pressed my hands down: “You don’t have to give me anything.” Unlike his scary-looking face, his voice was surprisingly pleasant to hear, “You keep it.” He said, “Keep it well.”
Without using any object in exchange for someone to sacrifice his life for me, I was naturally happy, therefore, I lowered the little silver mirror back down. I gazed at him, trying to smile tenderly: “Help me attract the attention of those celestial sect disciples away, okay?”
He suddenly raised his hand, gently caressing my cheek, his fingertips temporarily stopping over my dimple. Currently, I needed to rely on him to save my life, so naturally, I did not get mad and allowed him to caress my face however he pleased.
“Sect Leader.” He called me like this, and it seemed no different from any other disciples who usually called me in the same way. However, at this moment, because his fingertips were stopping somewhere on my face, the difference with other disciples was really great, “I can give up everything for you, just as long as you’re safe and sound.”
Mhm, showing loyalty at this time, he really was a well-spoken disciple.
It was just that his words did not move me emotionally. I had seen this type of thing quite a lot. Many people had said, ‘for you, I could give up everything.’ It was not because of how great he was, but because he originally had nothing at all.
I thought like this in my heart, but I felt that in front of me, Mo Qing’s fingers slightly stiffened. In that split second, I believed that he had seen through my thoughts. In my mind, I panicked a little, but after a moment, Mo Qing lifted his sword and walked away.
Without looking at his face, I only felt that this young man’s back was tall and straight, making people unable to cast their eyes away.
At that time, I thought that I was definitely going to be saved. Once I waited for Mo Qing to lure the others away, I would grab the Wan Jun Sword, quietly slip away to an uninhabited area, and cultivate to heal my wounds. Then I would return to Wan Lu Sect and unify the world. When the time comes, if Mo Qing was still alive, then I would protect him. If he died… Then I would build him a beautiful monument.
I had thought this through very well. When I was hiding in the crevice, I secretly looked at the situation outside. I unexpectedly saw that the brat, Mo Qing, at the same time, was fighting with the celestial cultivators and retreating in the other direction, on the other side of the Sword Tomb.
In the Sword Tomb, the murderous aura was already suppressed by me. At the center, there were some rays of light breaking through from the ground.
It was the Wan Jun Sword!
My heart became anxious. In this moment, I just saw Mo Qing, who had a low cultivation base, was drenched in blood from being slashed by the celestial cultivators. He stood above the sword mound, fresh blood flowing into it, soaking those rays of light inside.
Right at that moment, an celestial cultivator sliced his Achilles tendon, and Mo Qing suddenly fell down on the sword mound. He reached out his hand to grab precisely where the Wan Jun Sword had broken through moments ago.
The Wan Jun Sword had recognized its owner!
Although my heart was anxious, I still firmly believed that Mo Qing, who only had a wee bit of cultivation, absolutely could not pull the Wan Jun Sword out. Who could have anticipated, his blood would actually seep slowly down the sword hilt. Suddenly in the Sword Tomb, the aura surged up violently, and every type of auras spurted out, breaking through the imprisonment that I had just set up. Within a moment, countless celestial sect disciples were shot dead inside the Sword Tomb!
Just as Mo Qing was about to shout loudly, he pulled out the sword completely. The auras in the Sword Tomb immediately exploded, washing over thousands of miles, sweeping across the three realms. As for me, who was not the owner of the Wan Jun Sword and was still gravely injured, just like this, in the middle of this enormous fluctuation of auras…
I was rocked to my death…
Before my death, I saw that the dark scars on Mo Qing’s face slowly disappeared, following the circulation of the rays of light on the sword’s blade.
Only then did I realize, as it turned out, the dark scars on his face were not a talisman drawn for fun, but a seal, specifically the seal for the Demon King’s son.
I also realized that during that year, it turned out that what the Ten Great Influential Clans said to me about him being the Demon King’s son had been unexpectedly true and not deceit…
I suddenly came to a bigger realization, this Mo Qing followed me into the Sword Tomb, perhaps, from the very beginning, he had it planned very carefully. It was not because he wanted to protect me. It was not because he wanted to attract my attention. Even more so, it was not because he likes me. He just wanted to take back what belonged to his father, and because the Wan Jun Sword was sealed, he did not have enough power, so he waited until after I had finished handling everything else to seize the sword and slash the two celestial cultivators. Finally, he obtained the Wan Jun Sword, and used his blood to make the Wan Jun Sword recognize its owner…
This brat! Truly had a great scheme!
What a pity my life had been! Risked my life a thousand different ways, experienced every type of torment, and in the end, I unexpectedly made a wedding dress for somebody else! This hatred was so strong that I could spit out blood, I felt so unsatisfied!
However, despite how unsatisfied I was then, I was already dead.
Just like that, a death that was not even a little bit dazzling nor even a little bit ostentatious, but somehow a little subtle and ineffable…
Just when I felt the existence of this world again. It was a pouring, rainy night. I sat above my new grave, letting the raindrops pass through my soul, making pitter-patter sounds as it hit the tombstone.
I went around to look at my tombstone, not even a single character was carved on it. I was so angry that I wanted to trample this tombstone into pieces. I hated that I could not use an awl and chisel these big words, “Above the heaven and below the land, formidable without a rival, the most revered and respected supreme, the Demon King, Lu Zhao Yao.”
A tombstone without any writing, how could someone rest in peace even after dying!
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Enjoy your reading pleasure!
Please do not copy my English translations. You are welcome to link back to my website. Much appreciated.
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