Chapter 122: Su Ming's Test
Translator: EndlessFantasy Translation Editor: EndlessFantasy Translation
'That person is from Tranquil East Tribe. The tribe leader of Tranquil East Tribe definitely knows that I'm treating Fang Mu...'
Su Ming continued moving forward quietly as he mulled this over in his head. He remembered that the elder had once told him to think whenever he encountered any problems. If he did not understand a particular problem, then he could choose to place himself in the other person's shoes and think in that person's position to attempt finding a new line of thought.
'If I was the tribe leader of Tranquil East Tribe, I'd notice the changes in my son's health and behavior, and I'd follow him.... But he hadn't showed up yet, which means that the precautions I took by using fine control have worked.
'Similarly, if I was the tribe leader of Tranquil East Tribe, I would have doubts and be unable to come to a conclusion about this person treating my son. When I'm in this state of uncertainty and hesitance, and see my son's injuries getting better, even if I wasn't completely sure, I wouldn't risk offending a Berserker in the Transcendence Realm whom I suspect by trying to verify his level of cultivation. This will not do any good to me.
'In this sort of situation, if I see the bone blade that my child gave away as a gift being brought back by my people, what would I think?'
Su Ming massaged the center of his brows. Ever since he came to the strange and unfamiliar Land of South Morning, he had to depend on himself for everything. It was difficult for a person to survive anywhere when he was alone in a strange place and his power was not enough, unless that person was willing to live off his days being ordinary. Yet if Su Ming did that, he had no idea how long he would take before he could go back to his home.
However, he had too little experiences in life. He could not do better, just think about things from limited areas and angles. He had to make sure he did not easily appear as a hostile entity, but if he had to, he would also make sure that he did so with unwavering determination.
'Tranquil East Tribe... I'll use Fang Mu as a start and continue healing him bit by bit. Once my powers reach a certain level, then I'll find a chance and make myself a place here.
'I haven't showed any animosity towards Tranquil East Tribe, and I'm also treating Fang Mu's injuries. I've already shown them my goodwill. Now, with this blade, I can test Tranquil East Tribe's reaction and know how I should treat them.'
Su Ming did not come up with these thoughts immediately. Once he saw the black bells on the old man's wrist before He Feng challenged the Chains of Han Mountain, these thoughts began slowly brewing in his head for most of the day as he watched what transpired between He Feng and Xuan Lun.
He still lacked experience, or else he would have thought of these in an instant. However, as of then, he needed time to think of all that. He was still not as cunning as foxes.
For example, the incident where he used Fang Mu as bait. He might have seemed calm the second time he met Fang Mu, his actions seeming experienced, his words bringing about an oppressive effect as he probed for information, his behavior making him look calm and serious, but it was all due to time taken to prepare. He did not make too many mistakes, which allowed him to inspire awe in Fang Mu's father, making him not seem like a young man, only because he had used several months to analyze his situation and make preparations for the meeting.
Only when he was ninety percent certain of his plan did he execute it. This was also why he chose to wait until Fang Mu had gone into the forest many times and called out to him for just as many times before eventually making himself known.
If that had not been the case, he could have appeared before Fang Mu the very first time the boy returned to the rainforest. There wouldn't have been a need to make him for several months.
It was the same now. Su Ming had to use time to cover up for his lack of experience. Even if the incident with He Feng challenging the Chains of Han Mountain had not happened, Su Ming would have chosen to observe the place before leaving. Only when he had thought things through would he have returned.
Right now, he was analyzing what had happened in his head once more. Once he was certain that he had made no mistakes, he left the third layer and returned to his lodgings in the fourth layer of Han Mountain City as the sky became dark.
Su Ming sat down in the room that was several times more lascivious than the one in Wind Stream City and fell into contemplative silence. During the two years since he had come to the strange and unfamiliar Land of South Morning, he had developed a habit of always thinking at some point. The teachings given to him by the elder over the years also gradually surfaced.
'I still need to maintain contact with Tranquil East Tribe. My relationship with them isn't strong enough yet. I have to build up this relationship so that the tribe will eventually become one of the paths I can choose. But I can't just have one path available for me in Han Mountain City. I'll need to make other choices available for myself, only then will I feel at ease.'
Su Ming sat quietly in his room. Besides searching for a map leading to the Alliance of the Western Region, he also had to quickly set himself on firm ground here so that he could find out whether the elder was here.
Although there was little to no hope of Su Ming finding him, and the elder might have already died, Su Ming still refused to believe it.
'Half of the map leading to the Alliance of the Western Region will surely be in the Land of South Morning. This sort of map is definitely not an ordinary item, and it's certainly not something a middle sized tribe would have. This item should be incredibly valuable, and it won't be revealed so easily to others...'
Su Ming sighed.
'I'll still have to make sure I survive first before I can do all these things... and I can't just be like He Feng. I have to be like Xuan Lun and survive as a powerful Berserker.'
An almost unnoticeable glint appeared in Su Ming's eyes momentarily.
'There are five powerful Berserkers in the Transcendence Realm within Han Mountain City. Xuan Lun is one of them... He's also the chief guest of Puqiang Tribe. If that's the case, then the other four Berserkers in the Transcendence Realm should also be divided among the three tribes.
'Besides them, there are also a lot of Berserkers in the Blood Solidification Realm here. Most of them aren't members of the three tribes either. There must be a reason why so many people are willing to stay in Han Mountain City for a long period of time.
'Fang Mu once said that Freezing Sky Clan would always come to Han Mountain City to take in new disciples for their school in the past.
'This may sound like a really enticing deal, but I still think there must be something hidden within Han Mountain City that attracts powerful Berserkers like Xuan Lun to stay here.
'Currently, I have 243 blood veins and am at the seventh level of the Blood Solidification Realm. In Han Mountain City, I can only be considered mid-tiered. With fine control, I can fight against those at the eighth level of the Blood Solidification Realm! But I can only be barely considered to have reached the peak of the middle stage of the Blood Solidification Realm.'
Su Ming remained silent, but the vague shadow of the blood-red moon flashed in his eyes.
'But I have the souls of the Wings of the Moon with me. If I activate all of them under moonlight at the cost of heavily injuring myself like when I was at Dark Mountain...'
Su Ming closed his eyes and covered the shadow of the moon in his eyes.
'This is my finishing move. Unless I'm absolutely forced to and am driven into a life and death situation, I will not use it.
'Also, that Han Fei Zi is a really odd name. From the discussions, since the past, only the strongest three disciples in Freezing Sky Clan are given the status of Saint.'
Su Ming only thought about it for a moment before he chose not to bother with it any longer. He did not want to spend too much effort in things that were unrelated to him.
Once his mind gradually calmed down, he entered into a meditative state and circulated the Qi in his body slowly. Midnight arrived without making itself known. The world was quiet. The entire Han Mountain City fell into deep sleep.
At some point, muffled sounds of thunder traveled from outside, which was followed soon by the sound of rain falling on the ground, making all those who saw it to be unable to tell whether the rain was falling from the sky or bouncing off the ground. It was as if the two had blended together and formed a screen made of rain.
This was the season of rain.
As the rain poured heavily from the sky, it soon enveloped the entire Han Mountain City within. The wind also lifted the rain and lashed against the windows of Su Ming's room, beating the beast skins on the windows until they let out thumping sounds.
There was no candle flame in the room. It was entirely dark, but as thunder rumbled in the sky, lightning would occasionally strike, illuminating the room for brief periods of time.
Su Ming opened his eyes.
He stood up and walked forward before he opened the window quietly. Wind blew against his face and lifted his hair. He looked at the darkness and the rain outside, not moving and not making a sound.
'I wonder what season is now in Dark Mountain..? It's been two years, time sure flies...' Su Ming thought.
'How is the tribe..? Is the elder still alive..?'
Su Ming felt bitter. He was alone in a strange and foreign place, and he felt lonely. This loneliness made him use silence to protect himself.
He touched the scar on his face and stood for a long time... until his second night in Han Mountain City eventually passed by slowly. When morning arrived, the land was still covered by rain. There were few people walking in the streets. The rain on the ground flowed down along the mountain path, causing the roads to be slippery.
Su Ming did not continue his stay in Han Mountain City; he had already bought a lot of herbs. Though he might still be lacking a few herbs for Spirit Plunder and only bought one beast bone from the required three, there was nothing else that he needed from the third and fourth layer. He might be able to find some at the second layer, however.
Nonetheless, the requirements to enter that layer were not based on the level of cultivation alone. Entrance was only given to powerful guests of one of the three tribes. Su Ming pondered it for a while before giving up and leaving Han Mountain City.
So ended his first journey to Han Mountain. It was a bland and normal trip. He might have brought some of the people's attention onto himself, but that amount of attention was just like a stone being thrown into a lake-it only caused a few ripples before the water became calm once again.
When he came, the sky was clear. When he left, rain poured down from the sky.
With his back facing Han Mountain City, Su Ming disappeared into the distance. He did not stop but dashed into the rain towards the mountains located deep in the rainforest.
He did not pay extra effort in searching for the map of the Land of South Morning during his stay in Han Mountain City. Yet even so, as he walked through the streets, he paid attention to maps in the shops but saw none.
From the information he obtained from the conversations around him, he gradually pieced together that the maps of the region were all in the hands of the three tribes, and they were incredibly valuable items.
Su Ming's path ahead was shrouded in fog and filled with difficulties.
He had to become a powerful Berserker instead of a normal person, but he did not know where his future lay. He only knew that he had to walk down his path with a level head and increase his power until it reached a certain level. Only then would the veil of uncertainties before him be torn away.
He moved forward quietly at a moderate pace. As he ran, he did not go straight into the rainforest, but spent a few days going around in circles. Once he was certain that no one followed him, he returned to the familiar cave in the crack located in the deeper parts of the rainforest.
It rained continuously, and the rain washed away his footprints, forming a natural layer of protection for him. When Su Ming returned to the cave in the crack several days later, his body was drenched, and raindrops slid down his hair.
Once he entered the comparatively dry room, Su Ming circulated his Qi and waves of heat emanated from his body, as if his Qi had turned into fire. Very soon, wisps of white mist rose from his body into the air. His soaked clothes gradually dried up, but there were a lot of crinkles, making him look rather pathetic.