“How?” Ji Wujiong asked, “Do you want to try it?”
Meng Qi frowned, hesitated to speak.
“Meng Qiqi, you should think twice. No matter who goes in, the journey will be dangerous. And even if you’re willing to risk your life, there’s no guarantee that your sacrifice will make a difference. There’s a high chance you’ll fail to save their lives and even lose your own in the process.”
Ji Wujiong had a keen eye for spotting people’s weaknesses and knew how to exploit them. “In short,” he continued leisurely, “the fates of those two people in the forest have nothing to do with us. If one Pavilion Master met his demise somewhere, Xingluo Pavilion would quickly produce another one, though they will certainly pity the loss of this so-called talented youth. As for the Xue clan…” He paused and smiled, “If Xue Chengxuan dies trying to save his sister, the clan will reject her even if she returns alive. She’s already left the clan anyway, and they won’t miss this one daughter.”
Ji Wujiong gave a resounding clap and said, “Now that you understand the danger of this forest, let’s just act like we were never here. We are the only ones who know what happened, and according to the rules of the Three Realms, those who enter the Starfallen Sea are permitted to prioritize their survival over others. Although we are still at the edge of the Starfallen Sea, no one can accuse us of abandoning others in need and choosing to prioritize our own safety.”
As Ji Wujiong spoke the words ‘abandon,’ he stared at Meng Qi and deliberately put on an emphasizing tone, as if they were meant for her.
But he was such a perceptive man. Although his words of choice were still slightly mocking, they were indeed reasonable. Everyone fell silent in response, and even the lively Sikong Xing kept her mouth shut gloomily.
“If we can save them, there is nothing wrong with rushing forward. But that is not the case this time. Not only might we fail to save them, but we might even lose our lives inside.” Ji Wujiong let the silence rule over for a while, “There is no need to take such a dangerous risk, no?”
“We didn’t abandon them either. After all… we didn’t see anything and know nothing, don’t you agree?” Ji Wujiong turned to Xue Chengxuan. He spoke of the word ‘abandon’ for the second time, still with deliberate emphasis. He very well understood one fact: besides her persistence devotion towards the so-called ‘Master,’ Meng Qi’s rejection of him was also greatly caused by her identity as a medical cultivator.
And Meng Qi loved, even was obsessed, with medicine.
If he wanted Meng Qi to change course, first of all, he must make her give up her life as a medical cultivator. After getting along with her for so long, he had seen firsthand how stubborn this girl could be and how tenacious she was in order to save people in need.
Just now, when he watched with cold eyes when the three medical cultivators paid a solemn obeisance to the piece of bamboo slip, he had an even deeper understanding of their resoluteness and belief.
Ji Wujiong’s eyes darkened slightly. In short, if he wanted Meng Qi to transform into an array cultivator, he must first make her unable to continue staying on the path of medicine. It was a cruel method, he knew, but he would make it up to her later. By deliberately using the phrase ‘abandoning’ twice, he was trying to break Meng Qi’s bottom line bit by bit.
Once her bottom line collapsed, she would be pushed into a vulnerable state, finally giving him a chance to act.
Ji Wujiong knew he could not be hasty — slow and steady was the key — so he stopped in time and handed over the final decision to Meng Qi. He could give a little nudge here and there to slowly guide her away from the path of medical cultivators, but he must never push her too far. Moreover, even if Meng Qi decided not to enter the forest and risk her life to save Xue Jinwen and Pei Mufeng, it still did not contradict the principles of healers. Ji Wujiong was aware of this fact, which was why he deliberately let her make the decision.
In fact, the responsibility should never be Meng Qi’s from begin with. Xue Jinwen was a member of the Xue Clan, and Pei Mufeng was the leader of the Xingluo Pavilion. With Xue Chengxuan and Xu Zijun here, it would never be Meng Qi’s turn to decide whether to save them or not.
But so what? He had his own agenda, and thus pushed this matter onto Meng Qi’s shoulders.
“Meng Qi.” Chu Tianfeng spoke suddenly, interrupting Ji Wujiong’s train of thought. Just as he was about to continue, Qin Xiumo suddenly grabbed his arm and shook his head slightly.
Chu Tianfeng turned around in surprise. Qin Xiumo had a serious look on his face, and there were indescribable emotions in his gaze as he took a step forward: “We are already here, and we now know for certain that Xue Jinwen and Pei Mufeng are indeed inside the forest.” He said slowly. After a slight pause, he looked around and continued: “Since this involves the third daughter of the Xue clan head and the Pavilion Master of Xingluo Pavilion, we should ask for Fellow Daoist Xue and Fellow Daoist Xu’s opinion.”
Fuck! Ji Wujiong was furious inside. This kid wanted to destroy his good plan!
Xu Zijun said without hesitation: “I want to go into the forest and save my senior brother.”
“Fellow Daoist Xue.” Qin Xiumo turned to look at Xue Chengxuan, urging, “What about you?”
“If there is a chance, I naturally want to save my sister.” Xue Chengxuan said slowly.
“Then…” Qin Xiumo spoke with determination. His gaze swept over Ji Wujiong coldly, a dark current simmering in the depths of his eyes. “This place is too dangerous, so let’s take a vote.”
The two handsome young men in black robes stood still and glared at each other. The coldness in their eyes rivaled that of the peak of a snowy mountain.
“Before we vote, I have to make one thing clear.” Qin Xiumo continued: “The Starfallen Sea is dangerous. If any of us leave the team, it is almost impossible to get out of the Starfallen Sea alive without the cooperation of other teammates. Hence, after the vote, please adhere to the final decision and don’t act independently, regardless of your individual choice. We stand a better chance of survival by sticking together.”
With that, Qin Xiumo scanned the group and asked, “Does anyone have any objections?”
Everyone shook their heads.
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