Martial King’s Retired Life – Vol. 15 Ch. 59

A Fragrance Nobody Wants to Miss

There were parts that were bloody, parts that were welcoming; there parts that were innovative, parts that were weird; there were parts that could be combined, yet none of which could be explained once combined. The majority of the content in the dream was absurd, yet the most memorable scene was him and his mother at his mother palace, where she sat underneath a sycamore tree, watching him with a smile. His mother’s gaze was warming and reassuring, like her hands when she caressed his head, but there were moments where she looked forlorn.

Li Zizi knew there was something on his mother mind. He didn’t want to see her sad, but he didn’t know what the cause of her sorrow was. For as long as he could remember, there had always been rumours in the imperial palace that he wasn’t his father’s biological son, which put him in a dilemma. His parents assured him time and time again that they were merely fabricated claims, but he was never fully convinced. He believed he was unquestionably his mother’s biological son, but he wasn’t convinced he was his father’s biological son as his father was sometimes distant and sometimes affable. His lineage was the only reason he could assume troubled his mother. As someone with a good head on his shoulders, Li Zizi couldn’t stop himself from theorising whenever he faced problems. That was why he never dared to ask his mother what bothered her despite wanting to ask until they returned Luoyang this year.

The trip to Luoyang this year was a meaningful one for Li Zizi since he met someone who told him something that was hard to accept, but it was the catalyst for his quick maturation. Back when he was younger, he accepted all of his father’s test, even going as far as directly asking his shifu to train him. No matter how tall his shifu’s order was, he was determined to follow through for he believed it was the price of growing up. Even though his shifu wasn’t his father, he believed his shifu was one of the most formidable people alive. By extension, his harsh commands must have had their purpose.

Suddenly, the world shook, followed by a strong stench of blood permeating, then decaying flesh and blood mixing together, all of which were slammed into his mouth. The disgust woke him violently from his dreams. Upon waking, he chucked up all over the floor.

Ming Feizhen, staring at alcohol, passed Li Zizi a wet towel and water.


Ming Feizhen shrugged. “I kept vomiting for longer than a month after the first time I killed.”

“… Thank you.” Zizi accepted the towel to wipe himself, took a few breaths to clear his mind, then asserted, “I will not go soft. I can do it.”

Ming Feizhen eyed the young Prince before finally confirming that the latter was rightfully the scion of a monarch. Perhaps it wasn’t enough for Zizi to be used to committing murder yet, but Ming Feizhen had confidence that Zizi would be able to kill a second time without hesitation.

In all fairness, Li Zizi was plenty cold in the way he killed the enemy with a tree branch through the forehead. While it wasn’t a sophisticated kill, his method of was hardly sentimental. At the very least, Ming Feizhen didn’t see much softness in the decision. After all, it was a rare trait for a thirteen-year-old boy. Despite growing up gilded, he knew that he had to kill when his life was at risk if he wanted to survive. That natural instinct classified him as a natural-born warrior.

Ming Feizhen said Li Zizi was the “kind” type of martial artist, never expecting the characteristic to not be an obstacle to the latter’s decision making.



Ming Feizhen’s rhetorical question roused Li Zizi’s motivation to recover as fast as possible so that he could impress his shifu, oblivious to his shifu’s lack of motivation. Ming Feizhen inwardly shook his head for committing murder wasn’t a necessary wall to climb, at least not yet for the boy. Were it possible, Ming Feizhen would’ve preferred for the boy to have never needed to get over it. Ming Feizhen and Ming Huayu had already crossed to the other side.

Ming Huayu’s apathetic personality was in his blood. Deaths were just another name on a sheet of paper in his eyes. He certainly could see cruelty, ruthlessness, and blood, but he didn’t care. In contrast, Ming Feizhen was the complete opposite. It wasn’t anything complicated; he simply found it uncomfortable to take another life. If he had a choice, he would’ve preferred to abstain from killing. Though life often didn’t pan out as he wished, Ming Feizhen still held onto the hope that he’d be able to raise a warrior who didn’t revel in bloodshed.

“You asked me for a weapon, didn’t you?”

“Yes!” Li Zizi exuberantly raised his head. “I remember you said that ‘Pure Yang One Qi’ is even more formidable when used in conjunction with a weapon.”

Indeed, utilising a weapon was more preferable in Li Zizi’s case due to his small stature. He was quite confident he could’ve defeated the quintet faster if he had a broadsword.

“This is?”

“I’ve taught you everything I can teach you. This is the last thing.”

Ming Feizhen gave Li Zizi a short broadsword that could’ve arguably been categorised as a dagger, but the weight immediately told Li Zizi that it wasn’t a thin blade. The was shorter than the typical dagger, and the hilt was too short to be held with a full hand, so it was closer to a throwing dagger.

“Ages are the Border?”

“This is no ordinary blade. Although it’s impressively sharp, I hope you remember its name.”

Li Zizi bobbed his head. “What is its name?”


Li Zizi scratched his head. “Does that not make it useless?”

“Just like the branch. At the surface level, it appears useless, but it can save your life when you need it most. I want you to remember to never be arrogant and to never disregard human life. When you reach a point where the world you can command the world, remember when you were useless.”

Li Zizi muttered the name to himself several times, then replied, “Understood. Your disciple will bear it in mind!”

“You’re not my disciple.” Ming Feizhen gently patted Li Zizi on the head. “I don’t mind you calling me shifu, but my shifu has to give permission before you can be my disciple. We orthodox sects have policies.”

By the time the duo made it back to Liu Shan Men, it was late at night. Perhaps only General Manager Bai was the only person still awake out of anxiety. To their surprise, it looked as if Liu Shan Men was in another dimension on the other side of the world. Ming Feizhen reactively blurted, “Why the heck is it as bright as day?”

“Big Brother Ming! Zizi!” Su Xiao waved before he rushed over to the duo.

Ming Feizhen thought Su Xiao had matured a lot lately, but Su Xiao was still the old Su Xiao whenever push came to shove. “Xiao, what’s going on?”

“The imperial exam results have been released!”

“The imperial exam results?”

Face red, Su Xiao responded, “Yes! I wrote down a copy. Take a look!”

Ming Feizhen only now realised he had forgotten about it. Still, it wasn’t worth the entire office staying up late at night for… until he skimmed over the results. Hanlin Academician Ming placed second. For second place to be a member of Liu Shan Men, all the excitement was justified. That being said, nobody seemed excited to see Ming Feizhen when he returned, so Ming Feizhen took a closer look at the rankings and discovered two noteworthy things.

“… Where’s He Shi?”

Ming Feizhen found even Feng Shanshan on the ranking, yet He Shi’s name was nowhere to be seen. Considering he placed second after copying He Shi’s paper, He Shi should’ve placed first, yet He Shi wasn’t even in third place. Instead, Wu Dayong was in third place!

Liu Yuan, behaving completely out of character, patted Ming Feizhen on the shoulder in a friendly manner. “Hahaha, Ming Feizhen, never saw that coming from you. Sucks that you still came up short against out new top scholar.”

Liu Yuan sounded as though he was complimenting Ming Feizhen, yet he derided Ming Feizhen using the new top scholar at the same time, so Ming Feizhen couldn’t figure out what Liu Yuan was playing it.

“I was worried for a while, but nobody is shining brighter than Liu Shan Men now. In one fell swoop, Liu Shan Men has become famous and produced two stars.”

Ming Feizhen pulled his brows together. “Where did the ‘two’ come from?”

“Why don’t you check out who first place is.”

Ming Feizhen looked at the paper again. “Shen Shurong?”

At first, Ming Feizhen had no clue who that was, but a moment later, it sounded familiar. A second later, he remembered he heard it from Shen Yiren before.

“Young Master Kuang?”


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