Meng Qi’s tone was so firm that Yan Xuan couldn’t help but give her another glance. He gradually put away the languid expression on his face, appearing much more serious than before, as he silently sized up the slender figure before him. The blue-robed girl was young, yet she looked calm beyond her age. Her demeanor was elegant and polite. Her face, bare without any trace of makeup, was fair and clean. She had her long black hair pulled up somewhat casually, pinned by a simple jade pin. The only things that could count as accessories were a pair of blood-red beads hanging on her small earlobe, which added a bit of color to her body.
Yan Xuan stared at Meng Qi for a moment, then turned around and walked in the opposite direction of the Jingyuetian building. His movement clearly expressed his answer to Meng Qi’s proposal.
Meng Qi wasn’t angry and followed him.
“Why are you following me?” Yan Xuan continued walking. As he glanced, his tone turned indifferent again. “Jingyuetian building is over there. Aren’t you going back?”
“About that…” Meng Qi casually responded, “I’ve checked some records about the Ten Absolutes Mountain, but no one knows what happens after entering.”
“Of course. Even Jingyuetian…” Before he knew it, Yan Xuan was responding to Meng Qi’s inquiry. Halfway through, he realized what he was doing and abruptly stopped. “I already said I’m not interested.”
Meng Qi said “Hmm” again and continued, “I’m on my way back from Beyond The Heaven’s relay station, picking up some necessary items I’ve purchased. Well, as you know, I am a medical cultivator, while you are a spell cultivator.” As she spoke, she took out an artifact from her storage space and showed it to Yan Xuan, “This artifact, a sixth-realm one, comes embedded with a spell, also at the sixth realm. When I use it, I can exert power beyond my cultivation level. That’s why I could resist that person earlier.”
In short, it wasn’t intentional on her part.
Yan Xuan chuckled lightly. He didn’t look much older than Meng Qi, but the lingering air of despondency made him appear weary of the world. When he suddenly smiled, his facial features, already attractive, seemed to shine for a moment, brightening even his surroundings.
“Wei Yuanzhong.” Meng Qi recalled the name of the Anyun Peak disciple who claimed to be Qin Xiumo’s senior brother. “He is a Spirit Severing cultivator. Being part of the group going to enter Ten Absolutes Mountain this time, he is our opponent.” As she played with the artifact in her hand, she continued: “In short, this artifact works against him.”
“So what?” Yan Xuan said impatiently. “What’s the use of slipping away from under his nose?” He scowled, “Do you think that by doing this, we can avoid the attention of others and successfully reach the summit? If the Ten Absolutes Mountain were that easy, my father wouldn’t have…” He stopped abruptly, apparently not wanting to bring up that matter again.
“I agree.” Meng Qi responded with a soft smile. Pausing for a moment, she continued, “However, I have nine of these sixth-realm artifacts.”
“…” Yan Xuan stopped abruptly and looked Meng Qi up and down. “Nine?” He repeated, finding it hard to believe. Born as the heir of Jingyuetian Sect Leader, sixth-realm artifacts weren’t particularly rare for him. Jingyuetian, after all, was the number one spell sect in Three Thousand World, so he grew up lacking absolutely nothing. But nine? Who would casually carry nine copies of the same artifact? Besides, artifacts of these levels usually came with a corresponding spell, so they were indeed relatively powerful, but in a true life-and-death battle, these items couldn’t compare to the cultivators’ own natal weapons.
“Yeah.” Meng Qi explained seriously, “I’ve just reached the Nascent Soul Stage. On top of that, I’m also a medical cultivator.”
She didn’t elaborate further, but Yan Xuan understood what she meant. He walked forward in silence, and suddenly said after a while: “You showed me your trump cards so quickly, aren’t you quite careless? If I also enter the Ten Absolutes Mountain, we may be opponents.”
“No, we won’t,” Meng Qi’s tone was firm.
“Oh?” Yan Xuan didn’t stop walking. It was clear that he was very familiar with the roads, which shouldn’t be strange considering that he was born and grew up in Jingyuetian. However, as the two walked all the way, they had already moved from the bustling city center to the outskirts of the city. Even the most prosperous and grand city would have less glamorous areas. The place they were passing through now should be where the less fortunate residents of Jingyue City lived.
There was nothing strange with the young master of Jingyuetian knowing his way around the city under his sect’s jurisdiction, but even in such a poor district, he still moved forward as if returning home.
No matter what, Yan Xuan was now a Qi Condensation cultivator and the only son of the sect leader of Jingyuetian. In the Three Thousand Worlds, as long as one was a cultivator, they generally lived a better life than ordinary people. Meng Qi knew from her time in Qingfeng Valley that most disciples in the sect might only reach the Foundation Establishment stage in their lifetime and then halt their progress. However, with their Foundation Establishment cultivation and the medical skills learned in Qingfeng Valley, it was enough for them to lead a decent life in their later years.
Each step Yan Xuan took was decisive, without hesitation, but Meng Qi kept her curiosity to herself and quietly followed behind as he walked through several dimly lit alleys and finally entered what seemed like a very ordinary, even somewhat shabby, small tavern.
It was still daytime, not even mealtime, so there were few people inside the tavern. It was a simple establishment with only seven or eight tables. The place looked old, but neat and clean. At this moment, only two tables were occupied, and when Yan Xuan and Meng Qi entered, people at both tables turned around and glanced at them.
The tavern owner also noticed the two and hurriedly approached. She was a woman in her thirties, quite beautiful, and her charm couldn’t be concealed even in plain clothes. She warmly smiled at Yan Xuan, “Young Master Yan, it’s been a while.”
“Yeah.” Yan Xuan smiled back in response. In front of Meng Qi, he always had a somewhat indifferent and weary look, but towards the tavern owner, his smile was gentle. “Some things have come up recently,” Yan Xuan politely explained.
“Oh?” The tavern owner looked at Meng Qi, who was coming in with Yan Xuan. “Is this young cultivator lady your friend?” She curiously looked Meng Qi up and down, a hint of cunning in her eyes. She warmly greeted, “Please, both of you, have a seat here.”
The tavern owner led Yan Xuan and Meng Qi to the brightest table in the store. Food and drinks were quickly served — just some common appetizers and a pot of ordinary osmanthus wine. Compared to the wine brewed from spiritual flowers and herbs served by Ruyi Inn, these were nothing. The tavern owner enthusiastically filled a cup for each of them, and even before they could drink, Meng Qi could already smell a strong, spicy aroma of alcohol. She wasn’t much of a drinker, but Yan Xuan seemed unconcerned and took a sip right away.
There were other customers in the tavern and there was also the owner stood by the side. With many ears around, Meng Qi couldn’t continue bringing out Ten Absolutes Mountain. She picked up her chopsticks, casually picking up a shrimp and eating it. Although not very large, it was sweet and fresh, with a faint tea fragrance, very refreshing.
The tavern owner wiped her hands on her apron. Her tense expression relaxed this time, and she smiled, “Take your time. If you need anything, just let me know.”
“Alright.” Meng Qi nodded to her. “Thank you.”
“A moment, please.” Yan Xuan suddenly spoke, “Madam, hasn’t your son been ill for some days? I remember you said that his condition hasn’t improved even after seeing many doctors.” He pointed at Meng Qi and said, “She is a medical cultivator. You can try asking for her help.”
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