Chapter 154 Rou Jia Mou (c)
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Gumihou
When Shen Lingfei actually put the precious herb away as though he had every right to it, even Xiao Shu looked a little uncomfortable. However, the sense of discomfort was very fleeting. Very soon she was twittering around the guy like a little bird again. Shiyu watched all of this with a faintly disbelieving expression.
After dinner, everyone got ready to rest. Shiyu was still sitting by the fire when Xiao Shu walked up to her. “It’s getting late, why don’t you rest? You are still recovering so you should rest more,”
Shiyu caught sight of the sad gaze in her eyes. So this girl is aware of the guy’s bad treatment, but why would… never mind, Shiyu couldn’t understand the heart of a girl in love, but she could still support her a little. “It’s fine, you take care of me so well during the day. I should at least keep the watch at night.”
“I’m just not sleepy now,” Xiao Shu said, sitting by the fire next to Shiyu.
She seemed so preoccupied with her own thoughts that Shiyu uncomfortably thought back on how Shen Lingfei had basically thrown his ‘generosity’ around through Xiao Shu’s money.
Eventually, Xiao Shu fell asleep on some trampled down grass. Shiyu covered her with a blanket before settling down to  watch the leaping flames as she waited for dawn.
At daybreak, they continued on their journey. Xiao Shu returned Shiyu’s blanket, “Thank you for this. I happen to live in Dawn City, so do come and be my guest when you’re there.”
“Alright, I’ll find the time to do that,” Shiyu said agreeably.
Shiyu took the night watch for the rest of the journey. At night, she could feel people studying them from the darkness, but after burning one of the watchers to death, the rest fled.  Though she could not probe the darkness with her mental powers anymore, the hairs at the back of her neck had been honed to detect eyes on her. After that little demonstration, there were no more eyes peeping at them.
The rest of the little group had no idea that Shiyu had gotten rid of their tails. Three days later, they managed to get out of Spiritual Beast Mountain Range without meeting even a single bandit. Everyone crowed about their good luck. It was still early. If they travel now they would make it to Dawn City the next day, but someone suggested that they rest and have a good meal in a small town before returning to Dawn City.
Everyone was in favour of this and Shiyu naturally went along with it.
After settling down at the inn, Xiao Shu immediately set out. Shiyu went out too, hoping to pick up some precious herb that she hasn’t seen before.
When she reached the market place, she immediately spotted Xiao Shu’s little stall. A glance at the stall showed that the girl was selling off pretty much every valuable item on her person. That jade pendant she was haggling with someone looked like a personal item.
Shiyu immediately turned around and went off towards a different section of the market. She was unsure if Xiao Shu would feel embarrassed about getting caught selling her personal possessions like this but Shiyu decided to not take the chance.
Since the market was right next to the Mountain Range, it mainly sold things that could be found there. If someone is lucky, they might encounter something good.
Unfortunately, luck was not with Shiyu this time. She did not encounter any shady sellers hoping to pawn off some mysterious item. There were only honest sellers around, how boring, ah.
After strolling around for a bit, Shiyu got to the area where Xiao Shu had set up her booth. She was not there anymore, Shiyu couldn’t help but wonder if she managed to raise enough money. Though the situation was a little absurd, it still had nothing to do with her.
Shiyu spent the rest of the morning exploring the market and trawling the local food shops. It was close to noon when she finally returned to the inn. She shared a room with Xiao Shu. When Shiyu opened the door to their shared room, she found Xiao Shu handing out money to the other youngsters who took the silver happily enough. In fact, they were so happy that they even deigned to give Shiyu a friendly greeting before they left.
Once the last of them were out of the room, Shiyu closed the door and looked at Xiao Shu, “How much money did you shell out?”
Xiao Shu looked a little embarrassed, “Not too bad. Everyone agreed to let me pay the lowest market price for a 400-year-old rare herb. So, only about 200,000 taels.”
Shiyu frowned was immediate, “200,000 taels for something that belongs to you?”
“You can’t say it like that. Everything we found as a group belongs to the group. If I had not come with them, I would not have found the precious herb. Therefore, it’s only right that we all share it,” said Xiao Shu.
“… …” Shiyu sighed. It’s not like Xiao Shu’s thoughts were wrong but, “Then how come Shen Lingfei get to keep the herb while you have to pay for it?”
“It’s a gift from me,” when speaking about Shen Lingfei, Xiao Shu’s eyes immediately lit up. “He’s lacking this particular herb to reach Core Condensation Stage. I just want to help him.”
At Shiyu’s disbelieving stare, she blushed, “I know you think I’m a little silly, but I’m really, really, happy that I could help him. It makes me happy.”
Shiyu continued to stare at this drowning in love girl. Though others might feel that she was acting like an idiot, the idiot herself felt content.
Therefore, what could she, a bystander, say?
In many things,  only the fish in the water would know what they’re drinking is cold or warm.
That afternoon, everyone relocated to a restaurant and had a lively meal together. Shiyu could not focus on her food. Instead, her eyes were on Xiao Shu, who was happily smiling and helping Shen Lingfei peel or debone his food. As for the man himself, he was busy talking to others and never even sparing Xiao Shu a look.
It made Shiyu very uncomfortable.
Your mother, how dare you mistreat such a kind, gentle, generous and cheerful girl, ah!?
That evening, Xiao Shu did not return to their shared room.
Shiyu waited until it was quite late before she sought out some of the youngsters still hanging around the dining room, reminiscing over their Adventurous trip to the Mountain Range. “Do you know where Xiao Shu is? She hasn’t returned to our room,” said Shiyu politely enough.  The youngsters did not appreciate being interrupted, “Where else? Lingfei isn’t around either, right?”
In other words, Xiao Shu and Shen Lingfei went out together? Well, at least she did not have to worry about that girl’s safety.
Xiao Shu finally tiptoed back in the wee hours of the morning. Shiyu’s honed senses alerted her the moment Xiao Shu’s hand touched the door, but when she saw who it was, she closed her eyes again.
A couple of hours later, having washed, dressed and breakfasted, the group got ready to head towards Dawn City.
Dawn City proper was only a day’s travel away at their pace.
In fact, one could say that Dawn City was purposely build to be this close to the  most accessible entrance to Spiritual Beast Mountain Range. Because the road was so well travelled,  it was possible to hire carriages to take them back to the city. Shiyu guessed that these youngsters would not have wasted money on carriages if they had not been flushed with unexpected silver given to them by that silly Xiao Shu. Still, it was nice to travel by carriage instead on foot for once.
They arrived at Dawn City very early the next day.  As expected, horse carriages could not beat Cultivators when it came to speed. Prompted by the general air of excitement and relief, Shiyu pushed open the carriage curtains and watched as the tall, black, city walls loomed into existence. It looked desolated and simple.
Dawn City did not have the grandeur of the Imperial Capital, nor the leisurely air of Qing Shan City. Dawn City occupied a spot that was prosperous, yet a little half-wild due to its proximity with Spiritual Beast Mountain Range.
The carriages slowly clicked and rattled their way through the entrance of Dawn City.
Shiyu’s eyes widened as she took the vast cityscape. Her heart picked up pace.  It was not out of excitement. She knew, instinctively, that one of the Black Pages of the <<Soul Drawing Book>> was here!
Now that they were finally within the walls of their city, the youngsters bid farewell to each other.  Xiao Shu caught up with Shiyu and said, “Why don’t you come stay with my family for a few days?” However, Shiyu was too anxious about tracking down one of the Black Pages and demurred, “Maybe in a few days. I need to locate something first.”  Seeing how Shiyu really did seem anxious to leave, Xiao Shu merely smiled and let the matter go. After all, she too has something troubling her heart and was not in the mood to coax someone to come over and play.
The two girls separated. Shiyu depended on the instinct that was guiding her to where the next Black Page was. Almost blindly, she followed the tug on her heart until it made her stop before a gate.
Shiyu blinked and stared at the fairly large gate before her. Above the gates, two large characters stood out: Shi Estate.
Wei, sure the world doesn’t work on such lazy coincidence, ba…
She was still pondering over the matter when Xiao Shu rounded a corner and blinked at Shiyu.  Shiyu coughed into her fist and said awkwardly, “I was just passing by… and noticed the name of this gate. Err, so I stopped by to have a closer look.”
Gumihou is keeping track so that you don’t have to ~
|凝氣||Condensation Stage||Stage 1|
|化丹||Core Transformation||Stage 2|
|凝丹(46)||Core Condensation||Stage 3|
|化神(52)||Divine Transformation||Stage 4|
|成嬰||Nascent Formation||Stage 5|
|返墟||Revert Decay*||Stage 7|
|歸真||Original Purity*||Stage 8|
|成仙||Become Immortal*||Stage 9|
*Changed the words to something more mysterious sounding Er, one of the rules of survival in the wilderness involving fire is ‘Never keep your eyes on the fire or bright flame when keeping the night watch’.
Gumihou will tell you why.
If the night is very dark, staring into leaping flames would destroy your night vision. If an enemy or wild animal came prowling in the dark, you won’t see them once you take your eyes away since your eyes would take time to adjust. However, the enemy can see you just fine, nicely outlined by the lovely ‘leaping flames’ you’ve been looking at. Added Details for Logistic Purpose: ‘She could feel them watching’ the novel talked a lot about how Shiyu used her mental powers for this and that, but now that it’s impaired I suspect the ‘battle awareness’ or ‘sixth sense’ still remain? Just putting it in as a mention. Remind everyone that her mental powers have been impaired. By stupidity. Nyahaha!  Only the fish in the water know what they drink is cold or warm – only the people in the situation know what is really going on.  Adjusted Detail for Transition and Logistic Purpose: Too many things squeezed into one place and glossed over. Gumihou spread it out for better drama and allow more of the minor, nameless characters’ characters to glow through a little as per USMiC.  Adjusted Details for Logistic Purpose: Original text is ‘Entrance of Spiritual Beast Mountain Range’, bruh, you already told us there are multiple ways to get into the Mountain Range. Also, it’s a bloody mountain range surrounded by small towns and hamlets!! What are you talking about?
Never mind, patched with: Most accessible entrance Adjusted Details for Logistic Purpose: Only know that Shiyu and Co are travelling on carriages when she ‘pushed aside the carriage curtains’. Like, when did you get on one? Do you always have one? Are your people all on carriages? Why are you travelling in carriages?  Added Details for Dramatic Purpose: She was feeling the call of the Black Pages, made it more detailed and dramatic. Because in a way, the Black Pages might as well be a minor character and therefore worthy of protection under the USMiC.
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