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15 January 2017 @ 12:57 am
living up to you - chapter 08 - omen  



CHAPTER 08 - OMEN

Translation Notes: A bunch of new romanized terms/names in this chapter! Lets start out with the six realms: 神(shen) the gods, 仙(xian) the immortals, 人(ren) the mortals, 妖(yao) the demons, 魔(muo) the heretics, and 冥(ming) the dead. The boundaries of these realms are not rigid and can blur sometimes. Also, they can refer to the entire 'race' but can at the same time refer to a physical place. Apparently in Living Up To You, the Shen realm is in the heavens somewhere. The realm of the Ren, Xian, Yao, Muo exists on earth. The realm of the Ming, is in the underworld and hell. Beings that belong to the Yao race, which are actually spirits like Xiao Hei gone heretic, can simultaneously be Yao and Muo at the same time. But if you remember from previous chapters, a good spirit or 'yao' following the xian path does not have a realm of their own and are just considered a part of the Xian realm. That is because good spirits are much much rarer in comparison that the sheer number of evil spirits/demons alone can be called a realm. A mortal human can also be a Muo or Xian too, they just need to sign up. Xian and Muo are more considered paths than 'race' and in order to be one or the other, one has to make the decision. So realms that one can be born into are Shen, Ren, and Yao. Shen does not ever enter the Ming realm but the Ren and Yao do. In order to avoid becoming a part of the Ming realm eventually, one would have to choose one of the two paths. Both the Xian and the Muo have the potential to become gods, but many die and enter the Ming realm before they ever succeed in ascending into the Shen realm. This is my own understanding on how the six-realm structure works in this story. Hope that helps! 天帝(tian di) is the emperor of the gods. The 魂(hun) and 魄(po) are the two halves of a person's soul. 上仙(shang-xian) is a high-tiered Xian. There are different levels of cultivation and when one gets to the top, I guess they are called a 'high' Xian to diffrentiate, but you will see, that is not the end of the cultivation path, a xian can go even further. Lastly I bring you the word 呸(pei) because it's a cuss word. Just kidding, it's just a sound someone makes when they are faking a spit or spitting for real, usually when they are really irritated and really angry. PS. I realized I've been writing 风夙's name wrong the whole time. It's supposed to be Feng Su, but I'm not going to correct it lol.
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The six realms as told by the world are the Shen, the Xian, the Ren, the Yao, the Muo, and the Ming. Ever since the scourge of the Shen realm ten thousand years ago, the gate of the Shen realm had disappeared. No trace of the gods has been found within the six realms since. The other five realms have already mutually accepted that the race of the gods have perished. The only legacy they have left in the six realms is only the name Shen.

Lingshu grass originally belonged to the Shen realm, grew in the Shen realm. Ten thousand years ago, the flower god tossed out a handful of lingshu grass seeds from the gate just before it was sealed. They happened to fall on Cang Jia mountain, which prevented them from perishing from existence along with the Shen realm.

In the ancient books, it was told that in the ten years preceding the scourge of the Shen realm, every year after the lingshu grass would bloom forth snowy white lotus blossoms, on the next day they would all disintegrate into ash. At that time, nobody thought anything of it. Tian Di merely scolded the flower god for her carelessness, causing the snow lotuses to wither repeatedly.

However, on the eve before the gods perished, all the lingshu grass in the entire Shen realm bloomed in one night. At the instant the sun's rays touched the horizon in the east, they were immediately reduced to dust. It was said that the ashes of the snow lotuses, stained with the blood of the gods, rained down on the six realms for three days and three nights.

From then on, whenever snow lotuses disintegrating into ash is mentioned, it would cause the faces of those who hear to pale.

Indeed, at this very moment when facing the ten thousand snow lotuses that have disintegrated into ash, even Cang Yu's face paled with fear.

Ling Xi had no knowledge whatsoever regarding the history of the six realms, regarding snow lotuses disintegrating into ashes. She just thought it was such a pity, they were such beautiful flowers. The joy of winning had still not left her heart and mind. She realized Cang Yu had still not answered her question. Instead, he had stepped onto a cloud in a hurry to find Feng Shu, which he spotted in the far distance, slowing making his way over.

“Come with me!” The tone of Cang Yu's voice was restrained to an unusual low. With the toss of his sleeve, he had gone.

Ling Xi didn't even have the chance to exchange any words with Feng Shu. He only sent a brief glance her way, leaving with Cang Yu.

“All disciples of all divisions, return to your quarters. The Sword Trial will be continued another day.”

Cang Yu left behind these words as he disappeared in the distance, leaving Ling Xi standing there cluelessly. She could only watch as all the other disciples quietly left the platform in orderly fashion.


* * *

On Su Yun Peak, a dark gray daoist robe was stirred up by the mountain breeze. The bells hanging from the Qing Xu staff chimed melodically. Cang Yu's eyes narrowed slightly, his gaze fixed in the far distance ahead, overlooking the boundless world.

Feng Shu stood not far away from Cang Yu. His white robe swirled around him, appearing to fuse with the clouds in the sky. He remained silent.

Cang Yu wanted to wait for his explanation. However this disciple of his, has never been someone he could control. Ever since he took him in as his disciple, he has never called him 'shifu' in decency, unless it was in front of the entire sect's disciples. He still had to uphold Cang Yu's face as 'zhangmen', therefore those were the few times he would give him that acknowledgment.

“These three years, what have you been doing?” Cang Yu's temperament is rather mild, rarely getting angry. But due to suppressing his rage for this long, when this question came out it still carried a very obvious tinge of bitterness.

Feng Shu's facial expression did not change, “Doing whatever I want.”

“You... That girl...” When Cang Yu heard what he replied, he was actually slightly taken aback, stuttering before continuing, “How much cultivation exactly did you squander on that girl?”

Feng Shu closed his eyes in thought, “This is my own concern.”

Hearing this, the rage inside Cang Yu was so immense that he took the Qing Xu staff and struck it harshly into the ground. The entire Su Yun Peak seemed to have trembled from the force. “When that girl first arrived on the mountain, her soul was missing one of the three pieces of her Hun and four of the seven pieces of her Po, her consciousness had not even been opened! Today I saw her, clearly her three Hun and seven Po are all complete. If it wasn't you using your own blood as a catalyst, expending your own cultivated energy to gather and force the freeflowing natural energies to congeal so that you can use it to patch her missing soul, how can she possibly be as lively as she was today? How would she have the power to bloom ten thousand snow lotuses?”

Feng Shu remained silent. Cang Yu was so angry that his face had paled, “Even if you expended every drop of your cultivated energy and helped patch her to the point where outwardly she is no different from an ordinary person, what then? A soul that is comprised of pure spiritual energy, if one day the wrong person learns this, takes away her false soul, drains her spiritual energy, she will still go back to being that hazy-minded fool!”

“That is mines to worry about.” Feng Shu turned around, about to leave.

“Since she has caused the snow lotuses to turn to ash, Cang Jia Shan cannot keep her!”

Feng Shu stopped in his tracks, “She has also caused the blooming of ten thousand snow lotuses.”

“That is your spiritual power!”

“You clearly know it is not.” Feng Shu chuckled, “Don't forget, I have also touched the lingshu grass before.”

“You still hold it against me...”

“I don't.” Feng Shu's refute came quickly.

“Then your partiality and protectiveness towards her, it is simply because like you, she is also...”

Just as Cang Yu was hesitant of how to continue, Feng Shu turned around. At the corner of his lips was a faint smile, he said with straightforwardness, “A freak, one that only possesses a present life, with no previous life and likewise, will not have a next life?”

Cang Yu's heart quivered. A thousand years have passed, no matter how unburdened and carefree Feng Shu appeared on the outside, inside he was still affected.

Mortals have three lives: the causes of the past life, the effects in the present life, the debts of the present life, to be paid in the next life. That year in the Cloud Pavilion, he met the twenty year old Feng Shu, young but already possessing a deep spiritual cultivation. He had come up the mountain alone. He was astounded by the the youth's seemingly heaven-gifted potential, even more astounded when his divination revealed that he only had one lifetime.

His previous life was a blank, his future a vast endlessness. All other cultivating sects had regarded him as a freak of the cultivating world, pursuing him for almost ten years with the intent of killing him. All this finally ended when he reached the edge of the Eastern Sea.

He asked him to take him as his disciple.

At that time, Cang Yu had only been zhangmen of the Cang Jia sect for a hundred years. Those hundred years he has been searching for the divine gates without result. Coming face to face with the rumored Feng Shu who had appeared on Cang Jia Shan, at that time he just took it as a divine opportunity given by the heavens. Without hesitation he took him in, making him his first arch-disciple under the zhangmen door.

These happenings had been buried over a thousand years in the past already. By Feng Shu's current reputation and standing in the Xian realm, Cang Yu had assumed that he had long casted away his past sentiments towards the Xian realm for their merciless pursuit and coldbloodedness. When Ling Xi appeared before him inside the Cloud Pavilion, he could see with one glance that like Feng Shu, she also had only one lifetime. He assumed that the reason he was so insistent of keeping her was simply a fleeting moment of nostalgia... to his contempt, he had underestimated this disciple's rigidness. Feng Shu was so bent on repairing Ling Xi's soul that he was willing to go as far as to carve it out of his own blood and cultivation.

Cang Yu never answered, Feng Shu's smile dissipated “The one who caused the lingshu grass to bloom into ten thousand snow lotuses is undoubtedly Ling Xi. The one who caused them to turn to ash however, might not be Ling Xi. I suppose you know how to make your decision.”

Without even a last glance, Feng Shu disappeared from from Su Yun Peak.

Cang Yu watched his retreating back, for a long time was not able to come out of his thoughts.

Ten thousand snow lotuses.

The last time the six realms heard of the bloom of ten thousand snow lotuses, afraid it is already more than ten thousand years ago...

That year, Cang Jia Shan witnessed the rise of a shang-xian, the youngest it had ever seen to achieve that degree of cultivation. It was also that very same year that Cang Jia Shan witnessed the first time a shang-xian successfully opened up the gates to the Shen realm, the first time a shang-xian ascended from the Xian realm to become a god. It was a pity though, not even a hundred years after that, calamity fell on the god's realm, the gate to the Shen realm forever sealed and disappeared from existence.

Although it is told in the five realms that the god race has already perished, but since they are all gods, they do not go through birth nor demise, will not age nor die. How is it possible that such a race can perish so easily?

Ever since shifu handed Cang Jia Shan into his hands, it had been his duty to once again open up the sealed entrance of the Shen realm, to find the gates of ascension into heaven.

All these years since, even Feng Shu who possessed such unparalleled potential could not bloom forth ten thousand snow lotuses. To his surprise, that young girl managed to actually do it. However, those snow lotuses clearly being pure white and untainted, why would they instantly disintegrate into ash?

Cang Yu's brows were tightly locked together in perplexity. He raised his gaze to look at the blue sky and the white clouds that covered it's endless expanse. He could only see the evening sun gradually sinking, the glowing rays seemed to go on for thousands of miles. Unexpectedly, a cloud so dark in color it resembled a smear of ink covered half of the setting sun. It's glowing rays abruptly weakened. After a blink of an eye, the setting sun had completely disappeared from sight. The black vapors swept over the mountains and rivers, as if with the intent to swallow them up.


* * *

Ling Xi was waiting for Feng Shu to come back and leave Di Mai Peak together, but even after the sun had set behind the mountains in the west, she did not catch any glimpse of Feng Shu. However, the somebody did come to look for her: Qing Kui.

Qing Kui already heard of what happened during the Sword Trial. Once he arrived, his eyes did not stay in one place rather darting everywhere, a silly smile on his face, “Where's Xiao Hei?”

That black rose, Qing Kui had been calling it Xiao Hei. Even after Ling Xi had turned it into a little black turtle, the way he called it did not change.

Ling Xi put up a dull expression, turning around. She didn't really want to talk to him.

“Where's Xiao Hei? Where's Xiao Hei? Where's Xiao Hei?” Qing Kui could care less about the snow lotuses that turned to ash on the Sword Trial platform. He just kept asking for the little black turtle's whereabouts.

Before the second trial started, Ling Xi had given the little turtle to Feng Shu. Afterwards, she sat where Feng Shu had been seated to wait for him. Seeing the little turtle laying there motionless besides the wine cup, as if it had gotten drunk, she just picked it up and placed it in her sleeve.

Now seeing how anxiously Qing Kui was looking for it, she ironically didn't want to take it out anymore.

“Ah-chou, don't tell me you lost that little turtle?” Qing Kui asked nervously, “Aish, I knew it! By itself, its already a pretty powerful spirit. With all that years of cultivated energy I gave it, who knows, perhaps once it realized that its master is a dumb girl, it ran away!”

“What did you say?” Ling Xi asked with a frown.

“I asked you were did Xiao Hei go...” During these two years, due to Ling Xi's intentional or unintentional charade, Qing Kui still thought she was still that muddy-headed little girl that takes half a day to answer a mere question. Occasionally though, she would surprise him by throwing him a spark of intelligence.

“The part after that.”

Ling Xi pouted unsatisfied. Qing Kui laughed awkwardly, “Hehe, I didn't say that you're dumb... Please don't cry please don't cry...”

“You said you gave Xiao Hei a lot of years worth of cultivation?” Ling Xi was confused.

“Of course!” Qing Kui slammed a hand on the table, “If it weren't for me, your shixiong, how could you have passed that first trial! Just making it memorize Cang Jia Shan's rules is not going to help you get through the third trial, so I borrowed it two hundred years of my cultivation! Who knew it would run away!”

The third trial was originally going to be a combat trial, there was no way Ling Xi could pass it on her own... Although she was still a little mad that Qing Kui had sneaked the little black turtle on her without her knowing, but when she thought about it again, he was just hoping for her to win so that she could continue to stay on Cang Jia Shan...

“Here, Xiao Hei is very good, it didn't run away.” Ling Xi took out the little black turtle from her sleeve.

Immediately, Qing Kui's eyes lit up, picking it up, “Hahaha! Since the third trial's been postponed, hurry up and give me back my two hundred years! If it stays in you for too long it's not a good thing...”

As he said this, he casted an incantation. The little black turtle became engulfed in a glowing blue ball of light.

Ling Xi watched curiously, only seeing beads of sweat forming on Qing Kui's face. He opened up his eyes. With a loud “Pei!” he spat on the ground in irritation, then casted the incantation again. This scene replayed no less than three times, finally she heard Qing Kui let out an exasperated cry, “Ahhhhhhh!”

“Second Shixiong...” Ling Xi was startled by him, “What is it?”

“Ahhhhhhhhhh!” Qing Kui threw the little black turtle onto the ground, pointing at it with his wine jug as if it were a sharp sword, “You rotten little turtle! Give me back my cultivation!”

The little black turtle laid there on the ground, motionless.

“Don't play dead with me! If you don't get up this instant, I'll make you a dead turtle!” Qing Kui was already delirious.

Ling Xi darted a worried glance at that little turtle shell. It's head and limbs were all hiding inside the shell.

“Give it back! Give it back!” Qing Kui used a foot to stomp on the back of the turtle shell, “Give me back what you borrowed! Cough up what you ate from me! Give me back what you borrowed from me! Cough up what you ate from me!”

“Second Shixiong, be careful you're going to break it's wings!”

Ling Xi stood on the side, trying to stop him, but how could her words possibly get into his head right now? Even if he had been originally planning to swallow the black rose to raise his cultivation by two hundred years, but now the situation had been flipped with it swallowing the two hundred years that he borrowed to it in one gulp!

“Second Shixiong...” Ling Xi helplessly watched that little pair of wings being destroyed under Qing Kui's foot, sighing as she diverted her gaze. Unintentionally, her eyes landed in the direction of the setting sun in the west. Startled, she yelled out in a louder voice, “Second Shixiong! Second Shixiong! Look! What is that?”

“What is what! Cough up what you ate from me!” Qing Kui was still stomping on the the little black turtle.

Ling Xi anxiously shouted, “Second Shixiong, look in the sky! In the west direction! It's all black!”

At this, Qing Kui finally stopped. Sending an angry “Pei!” the little turtle's way, he lifted his head towards the direction Ling Xi was pointing. Instantly the color drained from his face, “That's... That's...”

Of course Ling Xi has never seen a storm cloud as dark as this hovering over Cang Jia Shan's sky. The only thing she felt was a thick and ominous feeling crawling up into her chest, strangling it. It was exactly like that night three years ago when she tried to escape with her unconscious gege...

Qing Kui tightly held onto Ling Xi's hand, “Ah-chou, that's a lot of... demons from the Muo realm!”
 
 
 
(Anonymous) on January 15th, 2017 10:23 am (UTC)
Argh... You're really spoiling us with the quickfire updates this week, and the story is getting so good! You've picked an amazing book to translate (are are doing an amazing job with the translation)... I really should go back to hoarding the chapters, otherwise these cliffhangers will do me in before long. :)
~Adnana
raini7o5raini7o5 on January 18th, 2017 09:58 am (UTC)
Had some free time lately so i figure I'll spoil u lovely readers haha
Sadly I'll be slowing down soon due to work.
(Anonymous) on January 15th, 2017 01:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the chapter!
I'm glad it was explained in this chapter why Feng Shu cared so much about her haha I was just starting to get really really curious about the reason :)
raini7o5raini7o5 on January 18th, 2017 09:59 am (UTC)
Re: Thanks for the chapter!
There's always a reason!