Chapter 181 Crystal Pork Shoulder (f)
Translated by Gumihou
Edited by Gumihou
Note from Gumihou:
Deadeye87 has pointed out that 化神 should be Divine Transformation, after some thought, Gumihou agreed and now Divine Condensation (which Gumi didn’t like anyway) has become Divine Transformation!
Divine Transformation sounds more awesome anyway.
While Shiyu’s party was making their way to the Eastern Empire, a horse-drawn carriage was racing through a certain patch of bamboo forest near the cross-section between Western Qin and the Eastern Empire.
It was now late spring and the fresh blush of spring had given way to more solid growth. The trees and shrubs were resplendent in brilliant green and dripping with recent rain. When a gentle breeze blew, it carried the scent of fresh-cut bamboo with it.
Qing Chen sat cross-legged at the head of the carriage, dressed in refreshing green robes with his long black hair pinned up with a plain wooden hairpin. He drove the carriage steadily, his eyes gazed forward and his beautiful face stoic.
Once the bamboo forest ended, they came across a river. Beyond the river was a black boulder with the words <<Eastern Empire>> stamped in fancy lettering on it.
This river marked the national border between Western Qin and Eastern Empire.
The river was very wide and there were no bridges in sight. However, Qing Chen’s expression did not change, nor did the speed of his carriage.
Just when it looked like the carriage was about to plunge into the river, the water ahead of the horses’ hooves froze into ice. Horse and carriage clattered over a smooth ice bridge that had suddenly formed over the placid river. Once the carriage wheels left the river, the bridge melted away leaving no evidence that it was ever there. The calm river water continued to flow on as though nothing had happened.
As the carriage moved onto a proper road towards the Imperial Capital, a figure suddenly rushed to the front of the carriage and waved for them to stop. The horses’ front hooves rose, high pitch neighs protested at the sudden appearance of an obstacle before them.
The person who had just risked being trampled on was a young woman with a fairly good looking face. However, she looked very haggard, her clothes were in tatters and her whole person was covered with bloodstains and scratches.
“Excuse me,” the young woman panted. “H-how do I get to the Imperial Capital?”
Once the horses settled down, Qing Chen eyed the young woman for a moment, “It’s north from here.”
“Many thanks,” said the woman. Then, her eyes slid over to the carriage and she said a little awkwardly, “If you are heading for the Imperial Capital, I- I don’t suppose you could spare a seat for one more person? I’ve already shaken off my enemies long ago and won’t make trouble.”
The woman’s voice was soft, tinged with a watery accent that indicated that she was not native to either Eastern Empire or Western Qin.
When the carriage driver said nothing, she continued, “I hailed from Xuan Chu Empire. It’s 100,000 miles from here and therefore, impossible for my enemies to have chased me this far.”
Qing Chen’s face softened a little, “Xuan Chu is quite far from the Imperial City, what makes you want to go there?”
At the question, the woman smiled. She knew that if Qing Chen had no intention of helping her, he would not have bothered with questions. She now has an opportunity to earn a ride.
“Greetings to sir, my surname is Qi, I am heading towards the Imperial College in search of a person.”
At this, the carriage curtains slid opened and a very heroic looking face  looked out. The person inside the carriage asked, “Who is this person you’re looking for?”
“A girl called Shiyu,” replied the woman. “She is… my friend.” Surely, they could be considered friends? Though she was not sure why these strangers would be so interested in her business, she decided to answer truthfully since she needed to beg for a seat in the carriage.
The man driving the carriage appeared a little surprised by her answer. More importantly, he allowed her to get onto the carriage.
Qi Chuyun was too grateful  for the ride to question her luck and stepped into the carriage willingly enough. In addition to the person with the handsome face, there was also a female Cultivator inside. The woman’s face was charming in an alluring way and her Cultivation was not weak.
Although she was curious about her travel companions, Qi Chuyun kept her mouth shut. Since she had begged a ride with these people, she would not be so crass as to question these people’s background right away. Instead, she smiled and suppressed her curiosity by looking out the window.  Time will reveal who these people are, eventually. If not, well, she still has a nice and comfortable ride to the Imperial Capital.
Please read this at kitchennovel dot com ~
10 days later, Shiyu found herself back at the Imperial Capital.
Compared to the last time she was here, it looked a lot livelier. As she strolled down the familiar streets of the Capital, she noticed there were a lot more Cultivators around than before. If a signboard happened to fall, it would probably hit quite a few of them. It was not like this before she left. When Elder Feng saw her looking around with interest, he said, “The Tribulation for the Tea of Enlightenment at Divine Tea Mountain would begin soon. That’s why there are so many people around.” Moreover, with the two earth-shaking Lightning Tribulations that preceded the Tea of Enlightenment Tribulation, it was kind of hard to ignore.
“However,”  he continued. “The seal over Divine Tea Mountain hasn’t been released yet, so everyone could only wait outside. You might think there are a lot of people here, but the area around the mountain is so packed with people others could only look in from afar.” “I see,” Shiyu murmured as she stared at the Divine Tea Mountain. Even from this distance, Shiyu could see a faint purple cloud hovering over the mountain top. She guessed that the final Lightning Tribulation was probably still brewing inside it. Who knows whether the Tea of Enlightenment would survive when the Tribulation strikes.
After some time, the group parted ways. Shiyu to the Imperial College and Xiao Shu with Elder Feng to the Feng Clan’s guest house. Since Xiao Shu was not yet a student, Elder Feng offered to put her up at the Feng House for the moment. Shiyu did not refuse this arrangement.
Once she reached the Villa she found that it looked pretty much the same as the day she had left it. The garden was neat and full of flowers, the house itself looked like a huge green fluffy sentry from the outside. However, once she stepped into the Villa, she found that the Spiritual aura within the house was much stronger than outside.
There was no one in the living room at this time of the day. No one, that is, aside from Wen Heng. Great Lord Wen was currently sitting in a chair with a book in hand. In front of him was a palm-sized, ice-green bowl filled with white pebbles.
As Shiyu watched, a small bud slowly stretched out from the pebbles and unfurled its leaves.
Even now, Shiyu had no idea what was going on, but the scene before her evoked a tender feeling inside her chest. Her heart felt as soft as the shoots of a young unfurling leaf.
Wen Heng turned a page of his book with his exquisite fingertips and said, “Please get out of the way, you’re blocking my light.”
The tender feeling vanished and Shiyu wore a face of 囧 and quickly stepped into the house, carefully closing the door behind her, “Why is there only one of you?”
“If there’s only half of me, you’d be even more shocked,”
“… …”  is this a joke? Did the Great Lord Wen just make a joke?
Shiyu looked around, then down at herself. She was covered in dust. Suddenly, she felt very dirty and decided to properly clean up first before facing Great Lord Wen. When Shiyu reached the room she shared with Xiao Qi, she found that the bedding on one side was in a mess and guessed that her little sister must still be living here.
After a quick wash, Shiyu felt more refreshed and able to face the gorgeous person sitting in the living room. If he was still there.
Wen Heng was still there.
“Are you and Wen Xian planning to stay until after the Tea of Enlightenment’s Tribulation?” she had half expected Wen Heng to run off with Wen Xian by now. Having such a great and powerful person around all the time was too great a luxury, ah.
“Will you come back and visit us?”
“That will depend on Wen Xian,” In other words, he will not be back.
Shiyu felt a little depressed.
Well, no wonder, if not for Wen Xian they would not have gotten to know such a great person like Wen Heng. Ever since Great Lord Wen had arrived at the Ninth Realm, he had stayed far away from everyone else. Whatever that was owed had been paid, whatever was not owed was given. From the very beginning, he had cleared off all debts he owed to them for having taken care of his brother.
But, she really wants to be his friend, ah!
Just a casual postcard friend is fine too, ah!
Haaah, the Great Lord Wen has yet to leave, but Shiyu missed him already.
Unfortunately, her sighs and longing looks did not affect this person. Wen Heng coolly flipped another page of his book, not at all concerned about the sighing girl next to him.
The only people who would affect him were the ones he cared about.
Such as… that unlucky brother of his who had just returned from classes!
[Gumihou: …I don’t want Wen Heng to be Shiyu’s friend. Please remain an aloof man, Great Lord Wen]
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|
 Why Withhold This? – Author’s hint is so vague that we’re not sure the person looking out the window was male or female.  Why Withhold This? – A girl named Qi from Xuan Chu, aw geez, who could dat be?
Just inserted ‘Qi Chuyun’ in place of ‘the girl’ Qi Chuyun’s Thoughts: Added some thought process to flesh out Qi Chuyun’s character  Adjusted Detail to Logistic Issue: Two detailed filled dialogues suddenly appeared, uncertain who it came from until third paragraph and lo and behold, ‘Shiyu listened as Elder Feng explained the situation’. Sent this to the beginning to tag the dialogue.  Shiyu’s thoughts: Expand on what Shiyu is thinking since she returned to the Imperial Capital. Also, not sure how she came to the conclusion of ‘In other words, he will not be back’. Then again, Shiyu’s deduction skill is weak, so, so… ¯\_(⌣̯̀⌣́)_/¯
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