Chapter 6: Little Hai
Translator: Subudai11 Editor: Chrissy
The Golden Bridge was quite wide, so even though there were thousands of people walking on it, the Golden Bridge seemed sparse. Wang Lu was leisurely walking behind the nervous crowd, cheerfully talking with his errand boy.
The average background of these thousands of people was extremely high; most of them even came from prominent families. But at the foot of the Spirit Sword Mountain, everyone would keep quiet out of fear. In this Immortal Path, very few could maintain their composure. However, Wang Lu's stunning performance when he appeared a week ago made him the center of attention of the people around him.
While most people were hesitating, opting for a wait and see approach, there was someone already coming for Wang Lu. That person casually greeted him, as if they knew each other for a long time.
"Hi, I haven't seen you the past few days."
Wang Lu was happily chatting with his errand boy, hence this person's interjection suddenly stupefied him. He turned his head and immediately asked, "Do you owe me money?"
The youth was stupefied as well. "I, I don't think so."
"Well then, do I have to talk to you?"
"... It doesn't appear to be so."
"Then why did you talk to me? Just trying to strike up a conversation?"
"That said, who are you?"
The person forced a smile. "Now I know why people say that eminent people have short memory..." He cupped his hands together in a greeting posture and said, "I am Hai Yunfan from the Cloud Region. We met in the lobby at the Ru Family Inn a week ago."
Wang Lu frowned, seemingly trying to remember who he was. "Oh, you were the young man who asked me about the tasks... Do you have any advice for me?"
"I am not qualified to give you advice. I'm just curious as to why you're not as concerned and worried like everyone else here in this Immortal Path. I really want to know how you can act so calm and confident."
Wang Lu smiled, "So, you want an advice from me again? This habit of yours is not good. Qualified adventurers should pride themselves on independent exploration. What do you get in chewing sugar canes that have been chewed by other people already?"
Hai Yunfan's eyes lit up. "So, do you really know some tricks for walking on this Immortal Path?"
"How would I know? I've never seen the strategy guide."
Wang Lu said with a sinking voice, "Of course, it's all about strength. If you're strong enough, then why would you need to care about strategy? For me, the road to immortality will be as smooth as the royal road."
Such rhetoric really surprised Hai Yunfan, causing his gaze to shift towards the sky. Wang Lu also raised his head. The sky was bright and scattered with floating clouds, even the birds were missing from the sky, which made Wang Lu wonder what exactly Hai Yunfan was gazing at.
Hai Yunfan sighed, "I was looking for thunderbolts. Boasting at the foot of the Spirit Sword Mountain, I wouldn't be surprised if you got struck even by a calamity-level thunderbolt."
Wang Lu was stunned for a moment, and then he laughed, "Your name is Hai Yun Fan right? Don't worry, I'll remember you this time. Don't worry. I'll protect you when we get into the sect."
"You are very kind to say that." Hai Yun Fan cupped his hands together again and began to walk next to Wang Lu. Behind them, Wang Lu's errand boy conscientiously followed them.
Wang Lu didn't care about it at all. As they walked, he asked, "If I remembered correctly, you are the son of an official right?"
"I mean, your dad is a very powerful official."
"Sort of. He's the emperor of the Grand Cloud Empire."
"Whoa. Then wouldn't that mean you have three thousand stepmothers?"
"Anyway, why did you give up the promising path of royalty to come here?"
Hai Yunfan said with a smile, "Power and influence in the mortal world is not as interesting to me anymore compared to the marvel of the Immortal World. Regarding Immortal Cultivators, because of the Grand Cloud Royal Family's influence, it is indeed not difficult for me to get into some normal sects. In the Grand Cloud Empire, the White Dragon Temple and Merciful Cloud Mountain are both fourth-rate sects in the Union of Ten Thousand Immortals..." He then said with a mocking smile, "But fourth-rate sects are nothing compared to the five top sects in the union, not to mention..."
Hai Yunfan glanced at the sky again and sighed. He then said, "Other than the five great sects, there are no other sects that can actually touch the Immortal World. Among the sects in the Union of Ten Thousand Immortals, only these five sects have mastered their way to immortality. Since I have decided to enter the Immortal Cultivation World, I naturally want to be a real immortal. Otherwise, I might as well live a comfortable life as an emperor."
Wang Lu looked surprised. "You sure know a lot."
"Since I made a decision to choose this path, I gathered quite a lot of information before I came here... and the information isn't a secret anyway. Among those who rushed to Spirit Sword Mountain, who doesn't come with a preparation? Who's not trembling with fear?"
Wang Lu shrugged and smiled. He secretly said to himself, "I don't have any preparation at all. A valiant man is born with the ability to take exams without any preparation. F*ck preparation."
The two walked side by side. The Golden Bridge stretched all the way up and was quite steep, but the two of them did not feel tired. They gradually moved forward from the rear.
Staring at the teenagers they passed, Hai Yunfan said, "Speaking of which, before this Immortal Gathering held by the Spirit Sword Mountain, the five great sects had never opened their doors to such a great number of people. Granted, even if they held the Immortal Gathering, it would be held once in awhile with many restrictions in place. So this gathering is a once in a lifetime opportunity."
Wang Lu looked around and said, "Yeah, there are so many princes and sons of officials, enough to hold a Grand Banquet."
Hai Yunfan said, "Well, these are not just people with illustrious positions. At the very least, as far as I know, more than eighty percent of them have a natural spirit root."
In the back, the errand boy, Wang Zhong, was wonderstruck and could not help but ask, "How did you know that?"
Hai Yunfan looked back, smiled and said, "Don't underestimate me. Even though I'm a prince of the Grand Cloud Empire, I can name the majority of people here... Moreover, without any real skill, who would dare to come to the Spirit Sword Mountain? Among the five great sects, the Spirit Sword Sect and Kunlun Immortal Sect are famous for sticking to ancient traditions. The Spirit Sword Sect is even more stubborn than the Kunlun Immortal Sect. Thus, there aren't any artificial spirit roots in the sect so far. The only thing any ordinary mortal could get from climbing here is humiliation."
While Hai Yunfan was talking, Wang Lu did not seem worried, but his errand boy's face grew ugly. Obviously, he remembered the Spirit Root Development Pills and the other items in his bag.
Hai Yunfan smiled and said, "But then again, in this Immortal Gathering, the only requirement from the Spirit Sword Sect is that the participant must be twelve years of age or under, and they mentioned nothing about spirit roots. Maybe they've changed their mind? Although the remaining twenty percent of people here are just trying out their luck..." He paused for a moment, "But I am not optimistic about that."
While talking, the party of three had already walked on the bridge for a long time. The clouds around them were getting thick, and the Spirit Creek Town behind them had shrunk to the size of a cardboard box. The errand boy closely followed the two in front of him, not even daring to look back.
But even so, they still couldn't see the end of this Golden Bridge. Clouds enveloped the front, and all they could see were tired teenagers resting along the way. Before they knew it, they had already made it to the front of the procession.
Wang Lu repeatedly humphed in disdain, "Those princes are so weak. Already tired at this point? Looks like they wasted their bodies to wine and women at such a young age."
Although this was not an unusual joke, Hai Yunfan still looked surprised. He opened his mouth but did not say anything.
The errand boy, Wang Zhong, complained from behind, "Young Master, I feel really tired walking this far. I'm barely holding on."
Wang Lu furrowed his brows. "You always ate so much meat and fish. Why are you as useless as those wastes? Come on, you just carried a food box, what are you complaining about?"
Wang Zhong felt extremely aggrieved. "It's not like that. This road is very weird. I haven't walked for too long, but it has already made me feel so tired that I can barely able to breathe."
"Then use your skin to breathe... never mind. Give me the bag."
Wang Lu sighed as he took the bag from Wang Zhong and carried it on his back without any struggle.
"Strange. Why do I feel like it's even easier than walking on level ground?"
"Young Master, you have always been exceptional..."
While the master and servant were walking, they did not notice Hai Yunfan looking at them in awe.
Without the bag, Wang Zhong felt much easier to keep pace with his young master in their upward climb. At this time, everywhere around them was a sea of clouds. Even the Golden Bridge's brilliance was partly covered. The three walked at the center of the bridge, and they already couldn't see its edges. Most people had been left behind, and of the few that were walking in front of the three, many were out of breath from walking.
At this time, even Wang Lu had also detected that something was off. "Can this road absorb people's semen? Could it be that those who lost their virginity would feel more and more tired as they continue to walk? So Wang Zhong, when did you lose your virginity?"
"I did not!"
"Why are you sweating a lot then?"
"So you actually lost it. Wang Zhong, you are good..."
The errand boy was about to kneel. "Young Master, please don't say that..."
Watching their banter from the side, Hai Yunfan laughed and then said to Wang Lu, "You and your errand boy are not ordinary people. You've been walking all the way up to now."
"You call this 'not ordinary'? These people are worse than pigs if they can't even walk on a bridge. And this guy needed his young master to carry the bag for him. Who's the young master now?"
Hai Yunfan shook his head. "Your standards are too high... Anyways, it's been a pleasure accompanying you two. But all good things must come to an end. We will part our ways here."
"Why? What happened?"
Wang Lu widened his eyes, feeling disappointed. Hai Yunfan wasn't the only one enjoying the company. It was the first time Wang Lu had found another friend after he had lived in the Wang Family Village for more than ten years. When he said he would protect Hai Yunfan, he wasn't entirely joking, part of if was true.
Although he was just a countryman and Hai Yunfan was a noble prince, Wang Lu did not regard the noble prince Hai Yunfan as a stranger.
Hai Yunfan kindly nodded to Wang Lu and then explained, "It's nothing. I just feel no need to try to be brave to go up. Being here is already enough for me."
Wang Lu was still puzzled.
"You don't have to understand. In short, I have found a suitable location."
Then, Hai Yunfan came close to Wang Lu's ear and whispered, "Be careful of your errand boy. Although his name means 'loyalty', he is not as loyal as you think."
At this time, a gust of wind suddenly blew, causing Wang Lu to close his eyes and ask, "What did you just say?"
But when he turned around, Hai Yunfan had already disappeared. When he asked Wang Zhong, the errand boy didn't pick up on what Hai Yunfan said either.
The clouds around them were becoming thicker - they could only see as far as five meters. Wang Lu touched his chin and said, "Could it be that he has already become an immortal?"
"Never mind. Let's continue... I don't know when we'll reach the end."
However, they did not walk too far this time.
It was neither because they have reached the end nor that Wang Lu felt tired. The errand boy just couldn't walk anymore.
Although Wang Lu carried the big bag on his back, as they continued to move forward, the errand boy's stamina drained faster and faster; eventually, he fell to the ground and couldn't get up anymore.
"Young Master, can you please walk by yourself? Wang Zhong is incompetent and can only send you here."
"That's why I told you not to come with me at the beginning. Now you left me with no choice..." Wang Lu helplessly looked at the nearly paralyzed Wang Zhong and eventually shook his head. "Forget it, I can't leave you here alone. I'll have a rest with you. Alas, we were so close to catching up with the people ahead... Although I don't know if there are any benefits in being first, being the first is always an achievement in itself."
Wang Zhong felt ashamed and bowed his head in silence.
Wang Lu no longer talked as he put the bag on the ground. As he sat down, all the clouds around them disappeared, and the golden radiance grew dim. A lush valley had suddenly appeared around them.
Wang Lu's jaw dropped as he watched the dramatic change in scenery.
"Did... Did we just arrived at the end?"
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