Chapter 286: Good... morning...?
Conversations erupted on the Blood Stream Sect side. One shocking event after another had played out on this day, leaving the entire sect completely shaken.
The Blood Devil had appeared, and one of the patriarchs turned out to be a spy. Such things could not simply be swept under the rug, and the whole sect was left feeling blank, and even humiliated.
The arch-patriarch had a bitter look on his face. Gritting his teeth, he looked over at the Spirit Stream Sect's founding patriarch, and then at the unconscious Bai Xiaochun. Within moments, the two sects would either be fighting, or joining forces. The arch-patriarch was silent for a moment, but then suddenly, his ears suddenly twitched, almost as if some other being were speaking directly to him. His expression flickered, and then became one of complete determination.
"The Profound Stream Sect tried to sow disharmony between our sects, with the goal of getting us to slaughter each other. Not only did they murder Fellow Daoist Droughtflame, they tried to kill one of our blood masters. We cannot tolerate such things! When the Blood Stream Sect goes to war, we don't return home until blood has been spilled. Therefore, the best thing to do is go wipe out the Profound Stream Sect!!" As his words reached the hearts and minds of the Blood Stream Sect disciples, their confusion was quickly replaced with fury.
"I vow to wipe out the Profound Stream Sect!"
"Let's get revenge for Patriarch Droughtflame!!" As their new goals came to be fixed in their hearts, their eyes shone, and they even swore oaths. The words of the arch-patriarch instantly caused their blood to boil, and their killing intent to seethe.
The blood clouds began to churn, and the blood seas grew even mightier as the Blood Stream Sect army began to fly off into the distance. The blood giants howled, and the blood-colored battleships sprang into motion. The ground rumbled as countless Outer Sect disciples flew into the air like locusts to become enormous spheres.
The Blood Stream Sect patriarchs spun and flew up into the blood clouds.
After a moment of silence, the Spirit Stream Sect's founding patriarch looked around at the other members of the sect, and could see the determination in their eyes. With a glance at a certain location in the Luochen Mountains that no one had been paying attention to, he listened to a voice speaking in his head for a moment, after which he gritted his teeth.
"The Profound Stream Sect interfered with the affairs of our two clans, and even tried to kill our junior patriarch! For that, they must die!" With that, he waved his right hand. "Spirit Stream Sect, the time has come to wipe out the Profound Stream Sect!!"
Rumbling sounds filled heaven and earth. Killing intent surged, and the light of spell formations climbed into the sky. The giants began to speed off into the distance, and the white sun overhead caused the sky to shake!
Many people couldn't help but take a moment to look over at Bai Xiaochun, the founding patriarch included. After gazing for a moment at him lying unconscious in the crater, they shot off to join the Blood Stream Sect on the continent that was the location of the Profound Stream Sect!
A war was about to be fought the likes of which had not been seen in the eastern Lower Reaches of the cultivation world for 10,000 years!
Apparently, a new sect was on the rise, like the dawn sun, shining with countless beams of glorious light, interspersed with blood and death!
The main forces left, but a small contingent from each sect remained in the Luochen Mountains, including Patriarch Ironwood and the Song Clan patriarch.
Of course, their reason for staying behind was Bai Xiaochun!
Bai Xiaochun was of vast importance to both sects, and neither would feel comfortable leaving him in the care of the other sect. As Master Thousand-Faces had made clear, Bai Xiaochun was also a major weakness for the two sects. As long as he lived, everything could proceed smoothly. But if he died, the connection between the two sects would be lost, and too many bad things could happen.
Naturally, Hou Xiaomei refused to leave Bai Xiaochun's side. She had long since noticed Song Junwan, and her intuition immediately told her that something was going on between her and Bai Xiaochun.
Song Junwan also refused to leave. The sight of the unconscious Bai Xiaochun filled her with pain, as well as other indescribable emotions.
And thus, time passed. The Luochen Mountains became quiet once again. The Blood Stream Sect and the Spirit Stream Sect set up two camps right next to each other in the Luochen Mountains.
Directly in the middle of the two camps was an immortal's cave, which was kept under tight guard. Even the two patriarchs watched over the area to make sure that no accidents occurred.
Inside the immortal's cave, Bai Xiaochun lay unconscious. Every day, Hou Xiaomei and Song Junwan would appear to accompany him. As time went by, Hou Xiaomei became increasingly convinced that something was going on between Bai Xiaochun and Song Junwan. As for Song Junwan, she could obviously tell that Hou Xiaomei had a relationship of some kind with Bai Xiaochun.
Soon, the cultivators from both sects came to sense the killing spirit that existed between the two women. Eventually, they even came to hear the two of them arguing loudly over the unconscious Bai Xiaochun. When that happened, sympathy rose up in the hearts of all of the cultivators.
More time passed. A month later, Bai Xiaochun's breathing had grown steady. Thanks to the inner workings of the Undying Live Forever Technique, he was slowly recovering. Coupled with the constant treatment of spirit medicines provided by the Blood Stream Sect and the Spirit Stream Sect, he was rapidly getting better.
One afternoon, his cultivation base suddenly spun, and his eyes fluttered open. When he realized that he was alive, excitement surged in his heart.
He thought back to everything that had occurred before he passed out, and his heart continued to pound with fear. If he hadn't pulled out his turtle-wok at the last moment to defend himself, he would surely have been destroyed in body and soul.
"That Droughtflame is too vicious! Dammit, once I get strong enough, I'll definitely have to get revenge!!" Gnashing his teeth inwardly, he was just about to sit up when he suddenly realized that something seemed wrong. Turning his head slowly to the side, he saw Hou Xiaomei standing close by, her hands on her hips, looking very much like a hot chili pepper as she glared at Song Junwan, who stood opposite her, casual and yet confident.
Perhaps because they were too focused on each other, they didn't notice that Bai Xiaochun had opened his eyes.
At that point, Bai Xiaochun's pupils constricted. Something about the scene seemed very odd, so he quickly closed his eyes and then opened them again a moment later. When he confirmed that he wasn't hallucinating, his heart suddenly thumped, and he began to feel very nervous. That was when Hou Xiaomei began to speak.
"What are you doing here again, old aunt Song?" she said, glaring. "You're getting pretty old, shouldn't you be in a retirement home or something? Why don't you hobble off and take a nap!? I can take care of big bro Xiaochun by myself!"
Song Junwan's phoenix-like eyes widened into a glare. Looking more regal than ever, she decided to put Hou Xiaomei in her place. "Look girl, I know that you're too young to understand the relationship between me and your uncle Xiaochun. Considering that you're Nightcrypt's niece, I probably ought to give you a good slap upside the face."
Hou Xiaomei snorted. "You're the niece! Your whole family are all nieces! Me and big bro Xiaochun are the perfect match! We're childhood friends, and we liked each other from the moment we joined the sect. In fact, it was only with big bro Xiaochun's help that I was able to get into the Outer Sect."
This was not the first time the two of them had argued with each other. Such heated interchanges occurred on almost a daily basis. Even despite Song Junwan's control over her own temper, she had almost killed Hou Xiaomei on multiple occasions.
However, considering the plans to join the two sects together, and Bai Xiaochun's role in that, she managed to hold back.
Bai Xiaochun licked his lips, and then, considering how murderous the two women looked, quickly closed his eyes and pretended to be unconscious. However, he soon realized that something seemed even more wrong than before. Everything was too quiet.
The quiet got him even more nervous, and when he listened carefully, it caused his scalp to tingle; in addition to his own breathing, he could clearly hear two other people breathing, and very close to him at that!
Beads of sweat popped out on his forehead. Pretending as if he were just waking up, he slowly opened his eyes and looked around in confusion. The first thing he saw were two faces as beautiful as flowers.
One seemed mature, the other young and inexperienced. One was spectacularly elegant, the other was sweet and pure.
"Good morning...." he said nervously, blinking a few times.
Song Junwan suddenly smiled, and her gaze softened. Reaching out, she placed her hand onto his forehead to feel his temperature. Eyes as deep as pools of water, she softly said, "Don't be scared. You were just pretending to be unconscious, that's all. Now tell your big sis how many days you were faking."
Bai Xiaochun swallowed hard and then said, "I...."
However, before he could finish speaking, Hou Xiaomei swatted Song Junwan's hand aside and stepped forward to stand next to Bai Xiaochun. Glaring angrily at Song Junwan, she said, "What do you think you're doing?!?! Big bro Xiaochun is very pure and innocent! How could he possibly have been pretending to be unconscious?!" Almost as soon as the words left her mouth, she looked suspiciously over at Bai Xiaochun, lowered her voice, and said, "Big bro Xiaochun, you've been corrupted! Pretending to be unconscious is wrong!"
More sweat popped out on his forehead. Being around these two women made it feel like needles were pricking into his back. "I...."
After rolling her eyes, Song Junwan coolly said, "Nightcrypt, I'd like to speak with you alone. You owe me an explanation."
"Big bro Xiaochun, I also want to speak with you alone!" Hou Xiaomei said, not willing to be outdone by Song Junwan in any way.
Bai Xiaochun was struck speechless. The two women glared at each other angrily, then turned to him to see what decision he would make. Taking a deep breath, he put a very somber expression on his face.
"Very well!" he said, deepening his voice. Hou Xiaomei had never seen Bai Xiaochun speak in such a way, or seen such an expression on his face. She was shocked, and suddenly realized that this version of her big bro Xiaochun was even more attractive than the old version.
As for Song Junwan, her expression brightened; this was the Nightcrypt she remembered.
"Tell me what happened between the two sects after I fell unconscious. And where are we now? In the Luochen Mountains, or somewhere else?" Bai Xiaochun's new tactic seemed to work. Continuing to try to look as serious as possible, he listened to the events which had played out after he fell unconscious.
The Blood Stream Sect would never have agreed to let him go back to Fragrant Cloud Peak, and the Spirit Stream Sect would never have agreed to let him return to Middle Peak.
Therefore, the two sects had arranged for a contingent of cultivators to stand guard over him in the Luochen Mountains. The Song Clan patriarch and Patriarch Ironwood had even stayed behind to stand as Dharma protectors. Bai Xiaochun was moved.
Then Song Junwan went on to explain what was happening on the front lines of the war. The Blood Stream Sect and the Spirit Stream Sect were currently attacking the Profound Stream Sect. The Profound Stream Sect was no match for such a huge army, and had suffered setback after setback. They had already lost about half of their territory.
Bai Xiaochun was shaken by how seriously the two sects took him. Even if he had wanted to go to the fighting, the patriarchs wouldn't have agreed.
"I guess it's my fault for being so outstanding.... Ai." Fretting luxuriously, he decided that the best thing to do at the moment was refrain from requesting to be sent to the battlefield. That way, he could avoid giving them any pressure, and could also avoid a situation where they suddenly went crazy and... agreed to let him fight.
"Ah, whatever. I should probably give the patriarchs a good excuse to refuse to let me go to the battlefield. My... my stomach suddenly hurts.... I guess my wounds haven't healed all the way yet. Well... I'll just continue to recuperate for a bit longer." Having reached this point in his train of thought, Bai Xiaochun decided that he was a very considerate person. Clutching his stomach, he continued to pretend to feel ill.