“On behalf of everyone in the pugilistic world, please allow me to thank you for your magnanimity.” Shen Yiren gave Elder Jia a palm and fist salute as well as a small bow.
Elder Jia reciprocated the polite gesture: “You need not thank this old one, Vice-Captain Shen. If Luo Ming really has been deceiving, murdering, stealing, framing everyone and planning to exterminate us, we cannot sit out. This old one was saying he was behaving suspiciously. Had you not informed this old one, this one would still be in the dark. This old one has no means of repaying your kindness. Please accept three bows and a performance of Falling Lotus.”
“Elder Jia, your promise to coordinate with us is more than enough. I must be somewhere else now. Please excuse me.”
Resembling a besotted man, Elder Jia waved as he softly said, “See you. Come by whenever you can.” He wasn’t drooling over Shen Yiren. The main reason he respected her was because Shen Yiren passed him a letter from Ming Feizhen.
Shen Yiren only recalled Hong Jiu spitting on a finished chicken drumstick to write on a random sheet of paper. She couldn’t be bothered studying such a “special” letter and just passed it on. She couldn’t comprehended why the elder shook and wailed upon seeing the letter, but she did catch a glimpse of the, “I’m fine. Follow her instructions. Check on Dad every once in a while. Stop worrying about things you don’t need to. It’s annoying.” Elder Jia then nodded and agreed on everything she said thereafter.
Who are Feizhen’s brothers…?
It was impossible to deal with Luo Ming on his turf without assistance. Luckily, Shen Yiren easily convinced around 70% of the factions present to join forces with her in subduing Luo Ming. Although the chaos on Dragonroot Island did a number on them, having crossed paths with each other made them confident that they could work together now that they knew what everyone was packing.
I hope I make it in time.
Shen Yiren ducked behind a blind spot and wore on the mask of a man with scars so that she could flagrantly strut out. She expected to see River Monster and Mountain Monster, who were her assistants, but… “Xiao Han, why are you here?”
Whilst letting Mountain Monster work on giving him a long face, Su Xiao replied, “Big Brother Ming told me to come help. By the way, he was wearing Wudang’s uniform and said he was done on their end.”
“Wudang…” Shen Yiren recalled Ming Feizhen performing Tai Chi. “He should be able to talk to them. Now… what did he ask you to help with? You are inexperienced, so be careful not to get busted.”
Su Xiao flicked up a peace sign: “All thirty sects on this side have agreed to work with us!”
“Huh? They’re all unorthodox sects. How did you…”
All of the unorthodox bosses sat as if they were at a poet’s party or lecture to prepare them for a scholar examination.
“There you have it.” As Mountain Monster stayed with Su Xiao in Canhu Town for some time, she knew what the fuss was all about.
Practically half of the mission had been completed already. Shen Yiren peered into the distance and uttered, “How many steps ahead did you read…?”
“Mount Daluo wins!” announced Jin Caitan.
“Luo Clan has yet to lose, though.” By the time he drew attention to him, the sounds of weapons clanging into the cauldron were just echoes. Nobody could identify him due to the face wrap that hid his face.
A-Ji helped Tang Ye up: “What happened to rock, paper, scissors to decide who goes first?”
“Can we start yet?” questioned Feng Jian.
Before Yi Wangyou could respond, Jin Caitan called, “Wait!” and then sauntered over to salute Yi Wangyou. “This one did hear you came to Jiangnan. In saying that, he does not recall Kunlun Sect being among the eight approved groups. This one, nonetheless, is blessed to behold Desolate Sword Dance in this lifetime.
“Having said that… you are not with Mount Daluo. Nobody’s comment regarding Mount Daluo taking in people should be shown any regard, but that does not apply to you for you are Kunlun Sect’s patriarch, nor do you use their style. Therefore, Luo Clan’s defeat cannot be considered your victory.”
“I shall withdraw, in that case,” Yi Wangyou expressed.
“Mount Daluo withdraws from this bout,” Hong Jiu confirmed. “We are about facts. A violation is a violation. An elimination is an elimination, my foot.”
Nobody understood what Mount Daluo was playing at ever since Yi Wangyou showed up as their representative. Calculative people shut their eyes to indicate that Jin Caitan should sort it out himself.
Jin Caitan, encountering a rule violator who’d own up to it without resistance for the first time, stammered, “That, that being the case…”
“We win, correct?” Feng Jian asked.
“Y-yes, the victory of this bout goes t-”
He had two flags across his back – as diviners in the pugilistic world carried them – and a humble smile that rendered Jin Caitan stupefied.
“Who is this empyrean?” His internal energy was too much for anyone to listen to him with their naked ears. “Thirty years to establish in the east. Thirty years, emptiness cannot attract emptiness. Thirty years to find eternal youth. Thirty years to end the search for the big dream.” He whipped his sleeve and exclaimed, “Bow down to Empyrean Zha!”