No wonder big devil was a big devil. After not even a day of treatment with ointment the wounds on his body had begun to scab over. But external wounds were no big matter. Most importantly, he had lost a lot of his cultivation. I couldn’t see how much and I couldn’t help him with that either. It depended entirely on him to sit in closed cultivation. The only thing I could do was to hand some of the ointment that Mu Jue had left me to big devil.
On the following days, I was always exhaustedly running around. On the one hand I had to care about Mu Xuan on Cang Qiong peak, on the other hand I had to send medicine to big devil in the river valley. Every day after bringing Mu Xuan food, I would chat a bit with him. But that day I was really too exhausted. After putting down the basket and sitting down next to him, I said: “Okay.” Then, inexplicably I fell asleep.
Not knowing how long I had slept, after waking up I found myself leaning against Mu Xuan’s body. Cheeks rubbing against his shoulder and hands even hugging his arms for warmth.
It was over.
After becoming aware of what I had done, some important questions jumped into my chaotic mind. First, this ambiguous position, why hadn’t Mu Xuan flung me off yet?!
Second, while sleeping did I utter any things that shouldn’t be said?
Third, has Mu Xuan used the opportunity to probe out my internal energy…….
If sorted according to importance, the third point was definitely the most pressing, but right now, I was most curious about the first point …….
With an uneasy mind I turned my head, but I didn’t expect to see a Mu Xuan that wasn’t awake.
So he was also sleeping……..
Leant against the icy wall, the pair of eyes closed, the breathing even. Ever since I met Mu Xuan, no matter if it was three hundred years in the past or the future, he was always carrying a solemn expression. A peaceful expression like now was very seldomly seen.
After watching him for a while, I found that my little heart again began to pound in a way that made one terribly worried. I quickly turned my head, let go of his hand and planned to leave from his side quietly. But as soon as I moved, Mu Xuan’s voice was heard: “Not allowed to come here tomorrow.” He used a commanding tone, but in my ears, it had a warm overtone, “Climbing Cang Qiong peak every day, it’s too big a burden for you.”
I turned to look at him. His eyes were still closed, but his breathing was different from before. He had been woken up by me.
“If I don’t come, Master won’t you feel lonely?
He didn’t answer. I pursed my lips: “Fine, I won’t come look for you tomorrow.”
However, leaving the ice cave, I couldn’t help looking back, Mu Xuan was still sitting there, his gaze calmly resting on my body. This time, before I turned my head again, he had moved his eyes away first: “Go back and rest properly.”
He left that sentence in my ear.
I took some medicine and descended the mountain to look for big devil. Like before, he peacefully ate the medicine. Like before, I sat on the boulder watching him. Then, I couldn’t help asking: “Big devil, do you like me?”
The big devil who was in the middle of swallowing, looking as if he choked, silently turned his head to look at me.
“I’m saying, try to feel it.” I pointed towards Cang Lin mountain peak, “Does Mu Xuan like me right now?”
He swallowed a mouthful of medicine: “Probably.”
I dazed. A gush of warm current flooded my heart, but it was different from the formerly imagined rapturous feeling after reaching my goal. This feeling was like bathing in a hot spring in winter, my four limbs and bones all became warm.
I settled my feelings and said: “Then, if I asked him for the soul mirror he should easily give it to me?”
Big devil made a light “en” sound.
After receiving this affirmation, I wasn’t as ecstatic as I thought I would be. As if this result had changed to one that I hadn’t imagined, my energy didn’t rise.
Listening to the flowing sound of the river, me and big devil both fell silent.
“In the end why did you choose the demonic path that year?” Looking at the sky, I lightly asked him, “Why did you have to kill your fellow disciples, murder your Master and collude with the demonic clan? When the Mu Xuan I have seen obviously has………..so much gentleness hidden inside his heart.”
Big devil was silent for a long time and when I thought he wouldn’t answer my question like before, he suddenly said: “I’m the same as you.”
I was dumbfounded, blinked my eyes to look at him: “How are you the same?”
His gaze fell on my body, not too different from the him three hundred years in the past: “Half demon, half human.”
Hearing this answer, I looked at him for a long time before realizing the meaning of these four words. Then, I covered my open mouth, unbelievingly looking at him: “You…… Mu Xuan…… half demon?” I was stunned, “But weren’t you Cang Lin sect’s first disciple, growing up in Cang Lin sect, how could your Master not kn……”
“My Master is aware.” Big devil said, “Only never told me. Master gave me the soul mirror, telling me to always keep it on my body. Before I only thought that the soul mirror’s energy was abundant and that Master wanted me to use that to cultivate. Only after, did I know, the soul mirror was a spiritual object that Master gave me to hide my body’s demonic energy.”
I scratched my head: “Wait….. I’m a bit confused….. Tell me slowly. Your Master, a spiritual master who has reached enlightenment, knew you were half demon and still took you as a disciple? You didn’t know before that you were half demon? Then when did you……”
I paused, suddenly remembered that day. The day of the battle at Jing mountain Mu Xuan and the black-robed man from the demonic sect exchanged a few words. Then, he wanted to follow that person……
“You became aware that you were half demon at that moment?”
Big devil tacitly agreed.
“My mother is Master’s old friend, she passed away not long after having me. Requesting Master to take care of me, Master took me back to Cang Lin sect. In order not to give me special treatment, Master concealed my identity, even from myself. Teaching me magic, giving me the soul mirror, not one wasn’t in order to suppress my demonic energy. To the extent that even I never figured out that I was different from others.”
“Three hundred years ago, on the expedition to Jing mountatin, Fu Shan demonic clan’s leader Shi Li, while battling me, felt the demonic energy in my blood and recognized which clan it belonged to. Baiting me with my life story and leading me away from Jing mountain, causing not one of Cang Lin disciples to survive during the battle.”
I was stunned. It turns out, during that time, Cang Lin sect’s disciples all………..
Including the female disciple who helped me with my medicine and Mu Jue……
I didn’t dare imagine the moment Mu Xuan returned to see the corpses of his fellow disciples, what he must have felt. I raised my head to look at big devil. His expression was utterly cold, as if he was recounting another person’s story.
“Then, I returned to Cang Lin sect alone. The elders confined me in Cang Lin peak. At that time, I got to know from my Master that my birth father was Fu Shan demonic clan’s former sovereign. He, like my mother, had long left the world. Master, knowing he couldn’t hide my identity anymore, decided to make it public. However, Shi Li first slandered me saying I collaborated with the demonic clan to cruelly slaughter my fellow disciples. Then, he planned to kill my Master, making everybody misunderstand me. Harboring bitter resentment, in the end, I fell into the demonic path. I sought out Shi Li, but before I had time to kill him, I was sealed in the bottom of the lake with the soul mirror.”
Just a few words summed up his former life. The path he walked alone, a life with bitter resentment.
“So, getting injured to this degree, slaughtering Fu Shan demonic clan was because you didn’t want Mu Xuan to experience these things?”
Big devil nodded: “I killed Shi Li,” He said this without the joy of having killed with one’s enemy using one’s own hands. Without the slightest mood fluctuation.
But thinking of it……
He had only disturbed another “Mu Xuan’s” life, while he himself had already first-hand experienced these things, had felt that kind of despair and unwillingness. If he was three hundred years in the future, in the time he should be in, his enemy would still exist. He would also have to face the aftermath again. It wouldn’t change one bit.
“I don’t need to stay here anymore.” Big devil suddenly sad, “When he comes out of Cang Qiong peak, my wound should already be recovered. Can use the soul mirror to return then. At that time, ask for the soul mirror, he should give it to you.” He paused, “During this time……try hard again.”
“I’m already trying very hard.” I grabbed my head, “So hard, that I’ve fallen into it myself.”
Big devil quieted, didn’t say a word.
The second day, I again went to Cang Qiong peak and saw Mu Xuan slightly knitting his brows. I acted as if I didn’t see anything, directly went to his side and sat down.
“Didn’t you say you wouldn’t come today?”
“I said yesterday I wouldn’t come look for Master, didn’t say I wouldn’t come today.” Hugging my knees, I leant against the wall, “I didn’t come look for Master, only wanted to come sit.”
Mu Xuan had nothing to say.
Big devil said his Master had already told Mu Xuan his identity. I finally understood why Mu Xuan’S mood was so bleak these days.
He had been Cang Lin sect’s brilliant first disciple from his childhood. Suddenly learning that one was a half demon despised by the common people. How difficult this situation was, I truly knew first hand. However, in the end I was different from Mu Xuan. I’ve always known and accepted my identity. Not like him, having had to experience the pain of one’s worldview being destroyed.
At a time like that, there was probably no one who was able to divert his pain. But having someone accompany him was still better than leaving him by himself and letting his thoughts run wild.
“The day I met you, there was a pedestrian chasing to kill someone in Cang Lin mountain, but the one being chased was a boy. It had nothing to do with you. I probed for your background, but came up empty-handed.” Mu Xuan suddenly said. I didn’t know why he suddenly said this and could only silently listen, “In the end who are you?”
His face was within reach, inside his penetrating eyes was only my reflection: “In the end what do you want?”
I want the soul mirror.
“Say it, no need to scheme anymore, maybe I can give it to you.”
I want the soul mirror.
I wanted to face Mu Xuan honestly, I didn’t want to deceive him anymore. Hence, a clear voice blurted out.
“I want you.”
The sounds inside the cave stilled.
Mu Xuan looked at me blankly. Inside his eyes, I saw myself with the same blank expression.
What did I say………
It seemed like I had blurted out the truth hidden inside my heart.
“So in order to reach that goal, you……..took me as your…….Master?”
The me inside Mu Xuan’s eyes remained in a dull state. I opened my mouth wanting to explain, but in the end, nothing came out of my mouth. I only saw Mu Xuan turn his face, saying lightly: “Truly disgraceful.”
His voice seemingly containing a smile.
I stammered: “In the end I won’t harm you…..”
After saying that, I suddenly felt a wave of guilt. Actually, it wasn’t that I wouldn’t harm him, the soul mirror could suppress the demonic energy in his body. After I took the mirror, the demonic energy in Mu Xuan’s body would become harder to suppress. Even though a half demon’s demonic energy was hard to detect, but Cang Lin sect was a place of cultivation. If there ever was a situation where Mu Xuan needed to use a lot of magic, without the soul mirror, I would undoubtedly harm his identity to be revealed.
“En.” Hearing Mu Xuan’s answer, my guilty conscience grew.