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17 December 2016 @ 12:03 am
living up to you - chapter 05 - turtle  



CHAPTER 05 - TURTLE

Translation Notes: New nickname this chapter. 小黑 (Xiao Hei) means Little Black. Since that's the only new term this chapter, I'll throw in a little trivia for you all. The 'rose' in this book is actually a 蔷薇花 (qiang wei hua) At first I did not know what kind of flower that was and I got curious so I googled it since I just have to know what kind of flower Xiao Hei is. Turns out 'qiang wei' is what roses are traditionally called in China. Turns out there are over 100 species of roses and many are originating in Asia such as 月季花 (yue ji hua) and 茶花 (cha hua) Tea Roses. Many of these were brought to Europe and crossbred extensively. The term 玫瑰花 (mei gui hua) that we're most familiar with now is like a blanket term used on anything in that family but it does have a strong western connotation right?
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That cold voice made Ling Xi's entire body felt as if it had been struck by a cold draft, her mind also cleared up instantly. The black veil enveloping the sky gradually receded, stars resurfaced and overpowered the darkness. That pair of eyes also disappeared without a trace.

Ling Xi had never seen anything as strange as this before. She closed her eyes tightly, then opened them again.

The setting sun cast a red glow over the land. The air was filled with the chatter of birds and the fragrance of flowers.

That black rose remained as before, in full bloom, unfazed and in silence. It was as if nothing had ever happened here.

Ling Xi's heartbeat began to quicken. What was that just now? A flower with a pair of eyes? A flower that could talk? A yao? A muo?

Impossible, impossible... Qing Kui shixiong said before, this flower grew absorbing the energy of the sun and moon and the natural spiritual energies here. How can it possibly be a yao? Furthermore, Cang Jia Shan is not lacking in powerful individuals. If it really did happen to be something of the yao or muo sort, no need to mention others, Da Shixiong would be the first to uncover it!

If not a yao or a muo... then, a spirit?



All things between heaven and earth have a spirit. Once this spirit has been awakened, like humans, it will start to have it's own consciousness. The majority of awakened spirits, as their desire for comprehension grows, they will start to self-accumulate. When a spirit self-accumulates to a certain extent, it will eventually have a spiritual body that it could change as it pleased. Unfortunately this spiritual body is not a physical one. Supposedly if a spirit wanted to escape the boundaries of its original body and obtain a physical body, it would have to commit to cultivation, endure difficult trials, in the end it could simply come down to whether or not one had the natural gift. For spirits, this is perhaps as difficult as ascending to heaven.

This is why the majority of these awakened spirits would choose to rely on other means to advance their own spirit, for instance devouring other awakened spirits, abandoning the rare and troublesome righteous energy for evil energy that is much easier to come by and much easier to obtain. In this way, came the existence of the yao that mortals tell stories of.

However, it's not true that all yao choose to rely on evil means to nurture themselves. There are also those that wholeheartely rely on cultivation and have obtained a physical body, only the two are not easy to differentiate. Mortals have seen far too many evil spirits that their eyes have become disillusioned, forming a prejudice against 'yao'.

So according to Da Shixiong, Ling Xi recalled what he said last, even yao can be separated into good and evil.

In this case, what she saw happen to the rose just now was actually the awakening of a spirit!

Ling Xi happily held up the flower pot, her heart overtaken by giddyness.

Most cultivators possess a spirited object of their own, usually chosen personally after they have achieved their immortal body and then using cultivated energy to nurture it. In order to differentiate from the yao of the yao realm, they are referred to as xian spirits. Take Qing Kui shixiong for instance, he happens to have a very well-behaved wine jug. She heard that it was the year he achieved his immortal body, when he went to Cang Qu shishu's place to ask for wine to drink, as soon as that wine jug neared him, it stuck to him. No matter how far he tossed it, it would be back on his tail. He eventually gave up and just let it stay, helping it become a spirit. Likewise, Qing Lian shijie has a hairpin that could shape-shift, knows how to use xian spells, can sing such heavenly songs, and can even morph into Qing Lian shijie's appearance to prank Qing Kui shixiong.

However, even though their xian spirits can understand and obey words, can transform, despite having been nurtured for so many years, they still don't have the ability to speak.

This particular rose, since it had grown at the very summit of Cang Jia's main peak, seeing as it was able to speak as soon as it awakened, there's no doubting its spiritual power must be exceptional!

Among the zhangmen's four disciples, only Da Shixiong does not have a xian spirit lingering close. The possibility of her winning the Sword Trial and becoming the zhangmen's disciple is next to none. When gege returns, she will simply leave. It's inevitable that she will disappoint Da Shixiong and waste all of his heartfelt teachings these past years.

At this moment Ling Xi has already completely forgotten that her purpose for caring for the rose was so that she could have gege eat it when he returned. The only thought in her mind was that after the Sword Trial, if she gave this rare rose as a gift to Da Shixiong, Da Shixiong would definitely be a bit happier...

Although right now this rose only has a pair of eyes, if by that time it could have achieved a spiritual body, that would be even better!

As Ling Xi was thinking this, her eyes drifted over to the table and landed on the tonic Feng Shu had left her. Her eyes darkened with determination, picking up the bowl and emptying its contents all into the flower pot. Afterwards, she busied herself digging through boxes and pulling out drawers in search of those xian pills that she had tricked Qing Kui into giving her over the last two years and without any hesitation, poured it all in, whispering in a small voice “Little rose, little rose.. You really can't let me down now, I'm counting on you to comfort Da Shixiong!”

***

Ever since Ling Xi stepped foot on Tian Mai Peak three years ago, Qing Kui had been impatiently waiting for the Sword Trial. The sooner it happens the sooner she would leave Tian Mai Peak. Honestly, judging by that fragmented soul and that sluggish brain of hers, if any one of the seven zhanglao take her under their door, she would be considered incredibly lucky already. To ask for shifu to take her as disciple, that's surely crying for the moon.

Just now at the Cloud Pavillion, shifu had specifically stressed that his direct disciples, those few individuals who are personally taught behind his closed doors, are all candidates for the next zhangmen. Unless Ling Xi somehow comes out on top at this Sword Trial, otherwise there will be no consideration.

Da Shixiong, who had always stood up for Ling Xi did not say anything to refute, meaning that he had given his silent nod to what shifu had said.

Qing Kui reached for the wine jug sitting by his side, bringing it up for a gulp. If looking at it from this angle, Ling Xi's stay on Tian Mai Peak definitely looks impossible! This is worth celebrating! Qing Kui took another big gulp.

“Da Shixiong... since Ling Xi is this important to Da Shixiong, why not consider personally taking her as your own disciple?”

At this very moment, Qing Kui was lying on the roof of the Cloud Pavilion. Originally he had been napping, waiting to watch the sun set over Cang Jia Shan. Once he heard this distinctly familiar female voice, his eyes immediately flew open, bright like snow.

That voice, he could tell it was Qing Lian as soon as he heard it. Qing Lian is shifu's third disciple, entering the door eight hundred years after he did. She cultivates exclusively in the water element. Her face is pure like water, her figure flows like water, even her temperament is gentle like water. Two years ago she had gone to Shui Mai Peak to tutor water-division disciples in preparation to take in some new disciples at the Sword Trial. Ever since then, he had never seen her on Tian Mai Peak.

Qing Kui held his breath for safe measure, jutting his head out slightly just enough to see the somber expression on Qing Lian's face. However, he could only see Feng Shu's white robe being stirred up by the wind.

“That's not your concern.”

Feng Shu brushed past her and left. Qing Lian caught up to him, “These three years, Da Shixiong is the one personally teaching her anyways. What is the difference between being initiated under shixiong's name and being initiated under shifu's name then?”

“Of course there's a difference!” Qing Kui muttered to himself, “One is your disciple, one is your shimei. The relationship is completely different alright...”

“Da Shixiong, Qing Lian only wants to know, why do you look at Ling Xi differently?”

Now, the question hits the point! The gossip in his blood immediately caught fire. Wanting to see a bit clearer, he stuck out the rest of his head. Just then, almost accidentally, Feng Shu turned his head, throwing him a glace that was neither salty nor bland. It caused Qing Kui's entire body to chill, recoil his head and plaster himself against the roof tiles, completely motionless.

After a while, after he couldn't hear any sounds anymore, Qing Kui carefully stuck out his head again. The entrance of the Cloud Pavilion was empty again.

Feng Shu...

When Qing Kui spoke that name in his mind, he shivered. Can't do anything about it, this is his shixiong. His cultivation is higher, his character is strange too. Other than Ling Xi, he has never seen him actually show another person his friendly face. If after Ling Xi is gone, in case he goes mad in the head and suddenly decides to stay on Tian Mai Peak, what then?

Two years ago, he unintentionally missed the gathering at the Hall of Oblivion. Shifu convinced himself that he must've been absent on purpose, punishing him to stay on Tian Mai Peak with the fancy assignment of 'solidifying' his character. Three years of being stranded up here, unable to descend the peak without permission. If Ling Xi is gone, will it just be him facing that stone-faced Da Shixiong?

This can't be...

As soon as Ling Xi leaves, even if Da Shixiong also leaves, just imagining the vastness of Tian Mai Peak and him being the only person here had him feeling conflicted. Wouldn't he get so bored that mushrooms would start growing off of him? Besides, Ling Xi still has his two hundred years! Who knows, maybe he still has a chance to trick her into giving it back!

His mind drifted back to the black rose. Qing Kui realised that it's been a long time since he's seen it, he really does miss it. With a quick spell, he rose up on his sword and flew back to Tian Mai Peak.

Ling Xi had been living in the main pavilion on Tian Mai Peak with Feng Shu all along, so naturally the beauty of the scenery here is infinitely more than she could ever take in. The wing that she is living in is not far from the Chen Xi Valley. Now being the prime of spring, the qilian lilies have bloomed throughout the entire valley.

Even before he neared, Qing Kui hollered out loudly, “Ah-Chou! Your Qing Kui shixiong is back!”

He was greeted with the sound of shattering porcelain and books dropping to the floor inside the room followed by Ling Xi's coarse voice as she shouted the word “Change!” Qing Kui smirked, looks like the silly girl is practicing incantations in the room again. Hope she doesn't get the incantations wrong and accidentally changes herself instead...

“Ah-Chou, so what is it you're trying to change?” Qing Kui seated himself besides the table as if it were his own room, watching Ling Xi with a taunting look.

Ling Xi stood there with a hand behind her back, a big smile on her face, but not answering his question.

Qing Kui's eyes darted about her, “What are you hiding?”

Ling Xi still stood there with that smile plastered on her face.

Qing Kui just assumed she hasn't processed what he said yet, glancing over at the bookshelf and asked “Where's Xiao Hei?”

Ling Xi blinked innocently.

“Ah ah ah! You changed my precious Xiao Hei? What did you change it into? Show me your hand right now!”

Ling Xi guiltily took a few steps backwards. She did indeed change the black rose... It was mainly because of all the xian pills she had poured on it on a whim was really too much. It still hadn't completely absorbed it. Qing Kui would surely be able to tell what it was and where it's from with a single glance. When Qing Kui suddenly showed up, her original intention was to turn it into a book and stick it in the pile of books, who knew things would turn out like this....

When Qing Kui saw no movement from Ling Xi still, he just gave up talking and got up to grab it from her instead.

Ling Xi managed to dodge him a few times, but she could not beat him. In the end, she could only hold out her hand.

Qing Kui's eyes almost fell from their sockets, “You, you— you—— ”

Emotions were starting to ferment inside Ling Xi's head.

“You actually changed my black rose into a black turtle!” Qing Kui yelled, “A black turtle with wings at that!”

Ling Xi's eyes began to cloud up.

“Just admit it you ugly little girl! Is this what you think when you hear my voice! When you imagine how I look when I'm flying on my sword! You think I look like a flying turtle right! That's why you turned my black rose into a black turtle! Even gave it wings!” Qing Kui was angry. This kind of transformation spell doesn't require the caster to have exceptionally high cultivation. What is most important is focus and concentration. When saying the incantation, one must clear all thoughts and only think of what the desired outcome would look like. Once the thought is formed, the transformation would then be complete.

Ling Xi actually wanted to argue, she didn't want to think of him as turtle either... but at this moment, any excuse would obviously be useless.

Ling Xi's eyes are already all watery, her tears looking as if they'd spill over at any time. Qing Kui suddenly knocked himself on the side of his head, “Aish, how could that head of yours possibly react that quickly right? My bad my bad, I shouldn't have blamed you. Don't cry please don't cry!”

“This little turtle... This rose, if it were a rose all it's life how boring that would be right? Now that it's been changed into a turtle, it's actually pretty cute haha, right? Don't you think so?” Qing Kui laughed bitterly, this shixiong is really a sad and pitiful role to fulfill...

Ling Xi's tears seem like they could stop on command. She reached down to pet the little turtle's head.

Qing Kui let out a relieved sigh when he saw a smile appear on her small face. As long as she doesn't cry, anything can be negotiated...

“Ah-Chou, there's another reason I came today, other than to see Xiao Hei of course, there's something important I need to tell you. Listen carefully alright? Try to react quicker too.”

Ling Xi was still playing with the little turtle.

“Do you want to win the Sword Trial?”

Ling Xi's hand froze, she looked up at Qing Kui in confusion.

Qing Kui glanced briefly at the little winged black turtle before reverting his gaze back at Ling Xi. His eyes turned into arches, glinting like snow, “Shixiong has a way to make you amaze everyone at the Sword Trial!”
 
 
 
(Anonymous) on December 24th, 2016 09:57 pm (UTC)
:D
Thank you for the chapter :p
(Anonymous) on January 3rd, 2017 04:06 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this. I'm hoarding the chapters for now, so that I can go through them in multi-chapter reading sessions, and I'm pretty sure that there are other readers like me, and even more who prefer to wait for a considerable number of chapters to accumulate before they dive in. So please, don't be discouraged if there aren't a lot of people writing comments for now. This novel has been greatly anticipated, and I'm very happy whenever I see you posting a new update. :)
~Adnana
raini7o5raini7o5 on January 10th, 2017 06:49 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the thoughtful comment! I'm like that too with my audiobooks, I like to dive in when they're complete so I can marathon it!! This is a pretty good book so while I'm translating it, it's like I'm rereading it in super-detailed mode lol, so it's a joy for me as well.