Read Story: SEASON 1 EPISODE 1979
Was that Thought Concretization?It was a replica of Tang Wulin. His eyes were huge, bright, and filled with high spirits, only that he was scruffily dressed at the moment.
In the scene, a worn and weary Tang Wulin rushed to the front.
His hair was unkempt, and he had a pale pallor on his face. He appeared to be breathing erratically.
“Where did you run off to? Why did you only come now?” The replica of Xie Xie which appeared younger snapped at him.
Tang Wulin grimaced as he answered, “It’s a long story. Let’s compete first. Teacher Wu, I’m able to battle.”
Wu Zhangkong looked no different from the Wu Zhangkong who was sealed in ice. Wu Zhangkong looked toward him with an expressionless face and nodded his head before speaking to Long Hengxu, “We’ve three participants from our class.”
Long Hengxu replied, “Class one from the first grade may select three students to compete as well.”
“Participants from both classes, please enter.”
Gu Yue moved toward Tang Wulin’s side and whispered, “Do you think you can compete? How’s your body?” While she could see that there was something wrong with Tang Wulin, his body emitted an aura that befuddled her.
“I’m fine.” Tang Wulin regained that grin of confidence from before.
Gu Yue nodded her head, “Let’s win together.”
Tang Wulin moved to occupy the center position once again. Xie Xie and Gu Yue were positioned behind him as the trio walked up the stage together.
On the other side of the stage were the class one’s three students.
“I’m Zhang Yangzi,” said the calm teenager in the center.
“Wei Xiaofeng, we met a while ago.” Wei Xiao Feng reached out his hand and stuck out his thumb before slowly twisting his wrist downward, making a provocative move.
“You!” Xie Xie was infuriated and was about to rush up toward him, but was prevented from doing so by Tang Wulin grabbing his shoulder.
Xie Xie was shocked as he eyed Tang Wulin. This guy’s strength had grown again!
“Wang Jinxi.” The wiry student from class one introduced himself.
Tang Wulin introduced his side. “Class five from first grade. Tang Wulin.”
The seven-colored light shadow faded. Tang Wulin’s body was blasted away. He came to a stop right in front of the scene with water ripples.
In the scene, the young Tang Wulin, Xie Xie, and Gu Yue were ferociously fighting against a few opponents who were slightly more powerful than them.
A silver radiance faded. Gu Yuena returned to her human form and watched the Thought Concretization displayed before her. Her gaze was fixated for a moment. However, she did not stop but charged toward Tang Wulin once again with the Silver Dragon Spear in her hand in the next moment.
Meanwhile, a faint layer of seven-colored radiance had coated the surface of the Golden Dragon Moon Song battle armor cladded to Tang Wulin’s body. He looked at Gu Yuena with an especially gentle gaze. His ability to conjure the Thought Concretization signified that his thoughts at the moment were completely immersed at a time in the past.
It was their childhood. It was their childhood before they entered Shrek Academy. It was precisely the time that they were together. They had intimate affection for one another since their childhood.
The Golden Dragon Spear was used to sketch a circle. The Mysterious Heaven Loop appeared once again to repel Gu Yuena’s incomparably powerful elemental attacks. Tang Wulin’s body retreated in a manner as if he was dodging the attacks, while the Thought Concretization behind him changed once again.
They appeared to have grown a little older in the scene.
Instead of Wu Zhangkong, four people sat in the room, one of whom was an unfamiliar white-haired woman.
“You’re finally awake!” Xie Xie leaped toward him.
“So I woke up in time?”
Xie Xie grumbled, “What do you mean ‘in time’? We’re already late.”
“Huh?” Tang Wulin was shocked.
“Let’s go.” Shen Yi stood up, giving Tang Wulin a meaningful look before leaving.
Xu Xiaoyan and Gu Yue also got up, the former beaming at him while the latter had an apathetic expression. Her eyes were far more expressive with concern lingering in its depths.
Tang Wulin nodded to them, then turned to Xie Xie. “Who’s she?”
Xie Xie replied, “She’s a friend of Teacher Wu from Shrek. We’re already three hours late. Teacher Wu is helping out at the academy right now, so we need to hurry over. Otherwise, we may miss our chance.”
“I’m sorry. This is all my fault.”
Xie Xie chuckled. “What’s the point in talking about it now? When you protected us at the forefront all those times, have we ever said thanks? How’s your body? How did your deep meditation go?”
Unable to tell Xie Xie about his seals, Tang Wulin could only smile bitterly and said, “I don’t know either, but I feel great.” He realized that, apart from feeling hungry, he was in good condition. Strength surged through his body, his soul power having grown. He estimated that it was around rank-27 or rank-28 now. Just like the first time, his soul power had not increased much.
Though hunger still clouded his mind, he sensed that his body had strengthened by a third. Considering his immense physical power, it was a tremendous improvement.
What he truly looked forward to, however, was how his bloodline power had evolved, as well as the surprise Old Tang spoke of.
But now was not the time to test it out. In fact, he didn’t even have time to eat.
“Do you have anything to eat?” Tang Wulin asked Xie Xie.
Xie Xie shook his head.
At that moment, Gu Yue held out a bag to Tang Wulin.
He accepted the bag, immediately knowing what it was just by the weight and feel of it. It was steamed buns and meat! They weren’t spectacular, but they were better than nothing!
He didn’t thank Gu Yue. Although they had grown estranged in the past three years, experiencing life-or-death situations together was a bond that would never break. Saying thanks was not needed in such trivial matters.
It was three steamed buns and a portion of meat. They didn’t smell particularly appetizing, but desperate times called for desperate measures.
Gu Yuena’s attack was launched once again. However, she managed to watch this particular scene where she had begun to unleash the attack earlier.
Obviously, she remembered when the incident took place. It happened when they were taking the entrance examinations to Shrek Academy in the past. They were late to the examination because Tang Wulin was making a breakthrough to the second layer of the Golden Dragon King Seal at the time. Everybody had waited for him until he woke up.
Fortunately, he managed to wake up in time albeit he was running a little late. They managed to take the examination in time anyhow.
The scene switched over once again. In the scene, they had arrived in front of Shrek Academy.
When the Shrek City was displayed in the scene showing the prior Shrek Academy, Gu Yuena was not the only person affected emotionally. The Light Dark Douluo Long Yeyue who could not stop herself from shivering was also affected. That was the prior Shrek! The glory of Shrek Academy for twenty thousand years was all there!
“That’s enough!” Gu Yuena suddenly shouted aloud. The Silver Dragon Spear in her hand glowed brightly and unleashed a seven-colored rainbow-like radiance which swept toward Tang Wulin.
On the other hand, her resounding shout seemed to have jolted Tang Wulin from his thoughts. The scene behind him evaporated. His gaze regained its brightness and clarity once again.
The wonderful memories lessened the agony in his heart at this precise moment. He swung the Golden Dragon Spear forward, and an indomitable aura burst forth from the spear instantly. He unleashed the Forbid Commonplace, Dragon Emperor Charge!
The powerful Golden Dragon King’s blood essence collided into the seven-colored radiance. Light rays dissipated everywhere, while the color of the sky and ground changed drastically.
The distance between them narrowed. Tang Wulin stared at Gu Yuena with golden radiance circulating in his eyes. He had no intention to dodge nor retreat.
Gu Yuena saw the quizzical look in his gaze. ‘Have you forgotten everything that happened before?’
Forgotten? How could she possibly have forgotten?
The wonderful time in Shrek Academy could be described as the most memorable period for her after she became a human!
Finally, they collided into one another. At this precise moment, the entire sky became distorted with more changes taking place and an even more powerful Thought Concretization appeared.
The gigantic scene, which spanned over a few kilometers in length displaying the prior Shrek Academy, occupied everyone’s sight akin to a reflection.
Inside the majestic Shrek City were Shrek Academy with its lush greeneries and the blue Sea God Lake. They looked so familiar, yet so far away.
In the meantime, the lighting on the scene became dark. The scene zoomed in and focused on the blue Sea God’s Lake. With the illumination and magnification of the overall scene, one could clearly see everything that was happening on the lake surface.
Two groups of people were standing, with a group on each side, on the Sea God Lake’s surface at the moment.
It was the Sea God’s Fated Date Festival! It was the fated date festival, meant for the students in the prior Shrek Academy, which attracted everyone’s attention. The Sea God’s Fated Date Festival had produced countless couples. In the past, the Holy Ice Douluo Huo Yuhao and the Dragon Butterfly Douluo Tang Wutong got together through this festival. Later, Huo Yuhao founded the Spirit Pagoda.
In one particular year, the Sea God’s Fated Date Festival’s couple of the year were the owners of the Golden Dragon Moon Song and the Silver Dragon Dancing Qilin who were now fighting in the air. It was the year which left behind the deepest memories in them.
Their silhouettes vanished completely when the scene appeared in the sky. It seemed like they were fused into the memories.
“The Love at Second Sight segment continues. The next one is…” Tang Yinmeng paused slightly. Then, her gaze fell on Tang Wulin. “Number Fifty-One. Please.”
The lotus leaf beneath his feet floated. Tang Wulin’s heart began to beat faster. It had been three years… A full three years! They had been apart for more than a thousand days and nights. Finally, they were able to meet again.
‘She’s grown up, so have I.’
‘We’re finally not kids anymore, we’re adults now.’
‘More than a thousand days and nights. Throughout those dry and busy days, I’ve taken a good look at my own heart. For more than a thousand days and nights, I wonder if you’ve ever thought of me?’
‘You didn’t keep a light burning for me… Is it because you’ve forgotten about me? Even so, I’ll not give up… I’ll never give up!’
On the opposite side, a pair of beautiful eyes stared at him — the most handsome young man in the entire venue.
Number Eighteen’s gaze bored at him. Number Seventeen raised her head without anyone noticing. Dai Yun’er was so excited and jubilant that she seemed ready to dash forth from her lotus leaf at any moment. There was also Yuanen Yehui and Ye Xinglan. They, too, were looking at him.
Everyone was looking forward to hearing what he was about to say.
“Due to certain reasons, I’ve been away for three years. During this thousand days and nights, I’ve missed the academy every moment. Ever since the sudden departure of my parents, this place has been my home. Today, I’ve returned. I’ve come at just the right time for the Sea God Fated Date Festival. I did not hesitate to come immediately because I was afraid that I would miss the opportunity. More than that, I was afraid that you would’ve fallen in love with someone else.”
“Three years ago, I asked you if you got close to me only because of my bloodline. During those dry days, I’ve given it a lot of thought. I thought that I was very stupid to have asked you that question back then. I shouldn’t have asked it in the first place. You’ve given me a sure answer, and that made me sad. I was sadder when I knew that I had a good-for-nothing martial soul and a defective spirit soul. However, I couldn’t let it show… because I was the captain. I couldn’t let anyone see the weak side of me.”
“I’ve tried very hard to bear the pain in my heart. I led the team in the competition until we obtained the final victory. However, even then, I didn’t know how I could face you, or perhaps, how I could face myself.”
“More than three years have passed. During these thousand days and nights, I’ve thought about many, many things. Many things which I didn’t understand in the past have all been made clear to me now. Why should I care so much about other things if I like someone? Regardless of the reason you and I met…. Regardless of how we came to know each other…. Since I like you, I’m willing to accept everything about you. If you like me too, we’ll be together then. If you don’t like me, then I’ll do all that I can to make you like me, and we’ll still be together. That’s why, no matter what, with regard to this relationship of ours, I’ll never give up! From today on, I’m yours and you must be responsible for me.”
The scene faded, turning illusory, then it became focused once again.
Tang Yinmeng said, “The date festival is past the halfway mark. But, I have to say the c----x is only about to begin. All the boys, you better start saying your prayers now. In the fourth segment, it’ll be decided if you’ve the opportunity to bring home a beauty.”
Lan Muzi nodded. “Yes, what’s about to begin will be the most exciting moment in the Sea God Lake Date Festival. The fourth segment, Destined for Three Reincarnations will account for at least seventy percent of the final outcome. So, I want to remind all the Sea God’s fair maidens that you must pick carefully. Because, once you’ve made your choice, you can’t change it anymore. That’s why you must be wise and listen mindfully to your heart and not be hasty with your decision which you’ll regret for the rest of your life.”
The girls had different expressions, but they were beginning to focus their gazes.
Lan Muzi looked at Female Number Seventeen and Eighteen who still had their bamboo hats on. He said in a deep voice, “Up till now, the both of you are the only ones with your veils still on. If you’re still unwilling to take them off in this segment, you’ll not have the chance to take off your bamboo hats ever. So, I implore you to decide carefully. Also, because of your outstanding performances in protecting your veils, if you remove your veils now, you’ll have priority in the fourth segment. I’ll give both of you a minute to consider this.”
“I’ll remove mine,” a crisp and pleasing voice sounded across the entire Sea God Lake. The one who spoke was Female Number Eighteen.
She raised her hand and removed the bamboo hat with its veil from her head. A beautiful, flawless face was revealed.
Her long silver hair hung loosely and her purple eyes looked like purple crystals. Silver hair and purple eyes! Even the shine of the moon and the stars paled in comparison to her perfect looks.
On Sea God Lake’s surface, the reflected lights seemed to enhance her ravishing beauty this instant. Everyone’s gaze was upon her.
“Dragon Spear Goddess!”
The Dragon Spear Goddess on the scene was precisely the Silver Dragon Princess in real life. Yet, those who had never witnessed the scene in real life felt puzzled because the Dragon Spear Goddess did not seem to be the same as the Silver Dragon Princess. There was an ineffable feeling to her.
That person was not Gu Yuena. In fact, she was Na’er.
Lan Muzi said, “To be fair to the other girls, since you already have someone in mind, junior Na’er, we’ll let you have first pick of the person you like in this fourth segment, Destined for Three Reincarnations. All of us would like to know the lucky guy who has our Dragon Spear Goddess’s attention.”
Na’er nodded. “Okay! I’ll go first then.”
Lan Muzi made an inviting gesture. “Alright. So, let’s invite Number Eighteen, junior Na’er to approach the person whom she admires. I wonder if the boys can feel their hearts beating faster.”
Na’er smiled. She did not seem to have moved when her body flashed with silver light. The lotus leaf beneath her feet had floated out lightly. There was a wake on the lake’s surface as she headed straight toward the boys’ side.
Tang Wulin could hear the breathing sounds beside him becoming labored. He could also hear the excited, thumping heartbeats. Without question, the boys were highly excited currently.
The lotus leaf drifted closer. Na’er’s pretty face had the same sweet smile. The closer she got, the more apparent the impact her awesome beauty had on the boys. Despite the inner court boys having calm composures, they were currently bedazzled by her beauty. If a man could marry such a wife, what more could he wish for?
‘Pick me, pick me!’ Almost everyone cried out in their hearts.
‘She’s close, she’s getting close!’
‘A hundred meters, eighty meters, fifty meters, thirty meters!’
The beautiful lady was only a few meters away from them. Everyone’s breathing became heavy. One of the boys could not restrain himself as he unleashed his martial soul directly. Circles of dazzling soul rings rose from beneath his feet as he displayed his strength. In the next instant, more than half the boys shone with the glow from their soul rings. For a time, a riot of colors broke out on Sea God Lake’s surface.
Ten meters. Only ten meters left!
The eyes of the boy closest to Na’er were bulging. He kept staring with his wide open eyes as the peerless beauty came toward him. The feeling was simply exhilarating.
There was a killing intent in Tang Wulin’s gaze. He stared at the boy as his hands were already tightly balled into fists.
At this very moment, the lotus leaf under Na’er’s feet suddenly drew an arc on the water’s surface. The graceful arc deviated silently and went straight toward Tang Wulin.
No, to be more precise, it was in the direction of Long Yue.
Na’er was getting close to him. She was only a few meters away from him.
Tang Wulin’s eyes bulged. ‘No, Na’er, you can’t pick him! He’s from the Star Luo Empire. He…’
Tang Wulin would have loved to strangle Long Yue right now.
On the shoreside, the outer court disciples were in an uproar. Many of them could no longer restrain themselves and started yelling. If their Dragon Spear Goddess picked an exchange student from the Star Luo Empire as her partner, it would be unacceptable for everyone.
The lotus leaf under Na’er’s feet slowed down noticeably. She glanced at Tang Wulin whose eyes were bulging. When she saw Tang Wulin’s hands tightly balled into fists as he glared menacingly at Long Yue, she could not help covering her cute lips in a graceful motion and let slip a laugh.
A silver light flashed faintly and the lotus leaf picked up speed once more. When she was about three meters from Long Yue, the lotus leaf slid away silently and drew another arc on the water’s surface as it floated to Tang Wulin’s side. Her lotus leaf touched Tang Wulin’s lightly. She raised her head and stuck out her tongue slyly at him.
Long Yue was stunned. The other boys were also stunned. Tang Wulin himself was equally stunned.
He was still Na’er’s elder brother at the time!
Female Number Seventeen who had not taken off her bamboo hat trembled slightly, but she quickly regained her composure. During the minute when they were allowed to choose whether to take off their bamboo hats or keep them on, she did not show any signs of movement at all. She remained the only person who had yet to take off her bamboo hat.
Tang Wulin who was momentarily stunned began to react to the turn of events. He could not be sure whether to laugh or cry. ‘This young girl, her little prank will be the end of me yet!’
As he looked at Na’er’s sly smile, Tang Wulin could not help raising his hand to ruffle her hair. “You cheeky girl.”
“Tee-hee,” Na’er giggled and stuck out her tongue.
His eyes were full of love and her smile full of sweetness. For a while, they kept everyone in misery. The glow from the soul rings of the various male students obviously grew stronger. If it were not for the few elders on the tower ship holding everyone back, they might have carried out the taking of partners by force segment immediately.
Tang Wulin said in a low voice, “Are you making trouble on purpose?”
Na’er curled her red lips. “How is this making trouble on purpose? Can’t I pick you, brother? Or do you want me to choose someone else?”
Tang Wulin grunted. “I’ll deal with you after this festival is over, you naughty girl.”
Tang Yinmeng said with a faint smile, “Alright, we’ll proceed with this segment. Now, the participants will draw lots to determine their turns to choose their partners. Before choosing their partners, the girls can make a request or pose a question to the boy they’re interested in. They can then decide afterward. Junior Na’er, have you forgotten about this?”
However, Na’er waved at her. She replied sweetly, “I don’t need it. I think no one else knows him better than I do.”
“According to the rules, the female students who have not removed their bamboo hats in this segment must wait until the final moment before they’re allowed to make their choice. Female Number Seventeen, will you pick the male student whom you admire?”
All of Tang Wulin’s awkwardness disappeared in this instant. His gaze sailed a hundred meters across the lake’s surface and landed directly on that girl. Everyone’s gaze was also concentrated on her. This was especially true for those who had already guessed her identity.
Under everyone’s focused stares, Female Number Seventeen shook her head lightly after a brief moment of silence.
Her movement was very slight and simple, but it made Tang Wulin, standing atop his lotus leaf, feel as if he had fallen into an abyss.
She shook her head. She did not make a choice. She really did not pick him. She had not picked anyone, or even removed her bamboo hat.
Without a doubt, this meant that she had no one whom she admired, and she was not interested in finding her partner in this year’s Sea God’s Fated Date Festival.
Tang Wulin felt as if something had suddenly taken hold of his heart. He immediately found it hard to breathe.
His eyes were slightly blurred, and the edges of his lips now had a faint bitterness.
Everything that they had experienced together overflowed in his heart. ‘Why did you not pick me?’
Every encounter was a reunion after a long separation.
He had been looked down upon because of his lack of talent, fought with his roommate soon after he entered the academy and was assigned to Class Five, which was the weakest. All these were sent his way by destiny.
He had felt helpless once and was lost also. Even if his heart and mind were strong, in the darkness, he was still a child.
In the unseen world, he had met someone after a long wait.
It was a peaceful, sunny day. Thin wisps of clouds hung in the skies. The gentle breeze brought a faint aroma with it.
On the field where everyone was drenched in sweat, he met with a pure white figure unexpectedly. She had delicate and pretty features, long black hair and black eyes. She seemed to have a strange air about her as she walked.
“Why are you wearing iron chains?”
“To train my body, of course! Teacher has higher expectations of me. You’re sharp.”
When they were eating, she seemed to have taken notice of his shocking appetite. She passed him her own buns.
“I can’t finish mine. You can have them.”
A single gesture had pulled them closer to each other. Everything happened smoothly just like an old friend who was concerned.
She was Gu Yue, and like the deep waters of an ancient well, she held many secrets within her. She was also like the broad, cold moon which cleared and brightened his eyes.
He was a humble Bluesilver Grass, while she was the beloved child blessed by the Elements. One of them went with the flow, while the other went against it. In the rapid torrent of time, they were reunited with each other after a long separation.
‘I’ve been hugging you tightly no matter which side you took.’
They displayed a tacit agreement in the Class Promotion Tournament and assisted each other in the spirit ascension platform. They became friends in the truest sense of the word.
When he came back smelling like barbeque, she could tell that he had met with another girl. When his crystallized form fell from midair, she caught him with her own body without hesitation to prevent him from shattering.
‘I’m cold toward others. I’ll only smile for you.’
When faced with the choice of whether she wanted to join the Tang Sect, her answer was ‘no’.
He was afraid. He was afraid that the people around him would leave one after the other, just like his parents and little sister had done.
“Who says I’m leaving you?”
“I’ve only chosen not to enter the Tang Sect, not leave Class Zero. Joining or not joining an organization doesn’t change my being at all.”
‘I won’t leave you. I’ll be with you forever.’
When they were young, time trickled sluggishly as they snuggled up to each other warmly.
On the soul bus, the sea was on the east. It was a boundless patch of blue, and the sea seemed to melt into the skies.
He looked at the beautiful scenery which flitted past the window. In a daze, he softly called out the name of his little sister. A silver silhouette disappeared from his mind as quickly as it appeared. When he opened his eyes, what he saw was her astonished look.
She smiled faintly and gave him a glass of water. There was only plain water inside the class. Its temperature was perfect, and it nourished his heart.
The sunlight fell on her face, which seemed to make her skin glitter in a translucent manner. He realized, as if for the first time, just how beautiful she was.
The sparkling glow from the sun made her rest her head gently on his shoulder. Her breathing gradually calmed down.
Without realizing it, he shut his eyes as well. His body felt warm and fuzzy. All his exhaustion silently faded away amidst the feeling of the moment.
There were hardly any words. This scene was like a monochrome fragment of the years they spent together.
With you, I would not be sad even if I died.
At the Skysea Alliance Tournament, she was suddenly attacked and could not react in time. The only thing she could do was bind her own hands and await her death.
Suddenly, her body felt warm. He had hugged her and used his back to bear the brunt of the attack.
Bright red bloodflowers bloomed in her eyes, but there was no sadness or regret on his face. There was only a faint smile.
‘How I wish I can accompany you on the roads that you’ll take in the future. But, I’ll never forget my original intention. I want to protect you like this forever. You, whom I hold so dear. Unfortunately, this may be the last time I’ll be able to do this.’
She was flustered. She cared not about using up her own life force. She utilized her purest life’s light to mend his damaged body.
She did not care. She wanted him to live on.
‘You’ve said that there’s no contract in the world that can surpass the friendship between two persons who share the same fate.’
‘Although you’ve grown up, you’re still you.’
Time flew by as swiftly as an arrow. Months flashed past like a weaver’s shuttle.
Three years had gone by. For some unknown reason, her attitude toward him had changed. She was not as friendly as she had been, and she even seemed to be distancing herself from him.
They sat for the Highest Hall Examination. They passed, but she was still distant.
“I don’t want to.”
“She hit you. I’m not happy.”
She turned around and looked straight into his eyes. There was no suspicion or reluctance on her part. She stated her reason plainly, without being open to other options.
‘Thank you. Thank you for still being the person who’d do anything for me. So, nothing has changed after all.”
‘When I’ve the ability to obtain justice, I’ll come back.’
She was picked on. Faced with the imposing manner of the elders, he did not have an ounce of fear within him. He stood beside her, being neither haughty nor humble.
This was because she, who was being picked on, was the person he wanted to protect.
“Tell me, is there justice in Shrek Academy?”
The answer was resolute and scornful.
He felt powerless. In the face of absolute strength, was he truly unable to protect others, even his own companions?
He raised his head.
“Elders, I forfeit my rights to take up Shrek Academy’s entrance examination. One day, when I’ve the ability to obtain justice, I’ll come back.”
For her, he wanted to give up on his ideals.
‘Even if the world deserted you, I’d still walk by your side.’
He had not returned the whole night. She waited without saying a word.
She leaned on a great tree with her eyes closed. A few drops of dew hung on her long lashes. Under the illumination of dawn, the entire scene looked like a scroll painting.
He looked at her in a daze. This moment was seared deeply into the depths of his heart.
“Why are you sleeping here?”
“It was already very late, and you hadn’t come back. I came out to look for you, but I saw you meditating still. So, I didn’t disturb you.”
She said it plainly as if she was talking about something insignificant.
There was a smile at the corners of his lips. He did not know why, but when he looked at the young lady before him, he had no intention of saying ‘thank you’.
Life did not always need grand and spectacular surprises. Sometimes, being simple and nonchalant was enough.
‘Even if we disband, I’ll still follow you.’
They had had a quarrel among their team. The others had disagreed with his opinion.
For the others, crafting a battle armor using a spirit alloy was too lofty a goal and unthinkable, like a divine steed which soared across the heavens.
However, she believed in him completely standing at his side without hesitation.
“Forget it. I think I’ve been indulging in my wildest fantasies.”
“No, I want to craft my one-word battle armor using a spirit alloy.”
When she saw her stubbornness and determination, at that moment, his heart was filled with warmth.
‘With you by my side, why should I be afraid even if I had to go against the whole world?’
‘Martial soul fusion. I’m in you, and you’re in me.’
When they were faced with a powerful opponent, he still stood in front of her. He knew that they would surely lose, but he was not timid or overly cautious.
He was a person who could bear with her pride and waywardness, just because it was her.
He was a person who would trade his life for hers to protect her.
Her gaze gradually became lost. She opened her arms just like that and embraced him tightly from behind.
There was no hesitation, only complete trust from her body and mind. Everything seemed to return to the days of their youth.
At that time, he was still a little boy who admired his senior. On the other hand, she was still a little girl who loved to quarrel.
There seemed to be a vast dome above their heads which witnessed this mighty ritual.
They had won, but they had fainted; her hands seemed as if they had grown out of his body. The two of them could not be separated no matter what. They had obtained victory and glory while they were in each other’s arms.
When two people traveled on conflicting roads, their fates might be severed. What endured forever were surely their martial souls and the bond between their spirits. Were they not each other’s partner?
The enormous scenes in the sky began to turn into a chaotic mess with fragments of memories appearing continuously in flashes. It was too much for the eyes to take in, yet for some unknown reason, an ineffable sorrow filled everyone’s heart.
When one’s spiritual power was powerful to the extent of the divine consciousness, one’s emotions would not only touch others but would even affect others. The powerful Thought Concretization was already contagious on its own. Hence, it affected every single person’s emotion on the scene.
The scene was obviously in a chaotic mess. Nevertheless, the feelings that Tang Wulin once felt could be experienced by everyone. They felt what he felt, and they grew sadder together with him.
On the other hand, they seemed to have understood the incidents from the past. They understood why she rejected him by shaking her head gently in the past. She did it because she was afraid of what was bound to happen one day! She did it because she was terrified that one day they would have no choice but be enemies, in spite of being deeply in love with each other.
“Please welcome our last candidate, the Dragon Spear Goddess. Na’er, it’s your turn.”
The entire Sea God Lake and the shore were quiet when Tang Yinmeng’s voice faded.
The radiance of the moon and the stars in the sky made Sea God Lake beneath the starlit night sparkle. Her silver hair, purple eyes, and exquisite silhouette were reflecting the light under the moon and stars as she slowly arrived next to Dai Yun’er.
Her gaze appeared a little dazed but there was a radiance rippling in her eyes.
Her gaze, as she looked at him, was no longer akin to a sister looking at an older brother.
Tang Wulin was taken aback when he sensed that she was looking at him differently.
“Brother!” Na’er called out to him softly.
“Na’er, you…” Tang Wulin was frowning ever so slightly.
Na’er smiled. “Brother, do you know the moment you took me in when I was three years old that I already loved you? Even when you were not so strong, you did your best to defend me from those evil men. You’re not only kind but brave.”
“You’re much tougher than your peers. Your martial soul awakened when you were six years old. It was the Bluesilver Grass, a universally acknowledged useless martial soul. However, you had soul power when your martial soul was awakened. Your ambition was to become a soul master, but you dared not think about becoming a battle armor master at the time. You said you wish to control a mecha instead.”
Na’er looked at Tang Wulin affectionately. At that moment, he was all her eyes could see. “But, one would need to spend a lot of money in order to become a soul master with a spirit soul. Our family was not well off. Father and Mother worked very hard. Thus, you were only allowed to study forging when you were sixteen years old. I remember very clearly that you couldn’t even make an expression because you were so tired after class at the beginning. You collapsed on the bed, and it seemed like you couldn’t even hear me calling out to you.”
“Yet, you didn’t give up. You still remained persistent in learning. You bought me candies with the remaining money after you had saved a portion of your salary each time. Those candies were so sweet.”
“Do you still remember that I once asked if you would miss me when I’m gone?”
Tang Wulin listened to Na’er’s words in a daze. His mind seemed to have traveled back to ten years ago when he was still at his home.
‘My ambition is to go to the Star Sea.’
He was a youth with black hair, black eyes, and a fair complexion. He stepped into the Eastsea City alone with a vain hope as he embarked on an unknown journey.
He had a useless Bluesilver Grass martial soul and his inherent, pitiful rank-3 soul power. He was ordinary in the vast city, but even that tiny grass seed which was blown everywhere could fulfill its original intention.
While the rest of the people were still immersed in their parents’ inculcation, he had lost his home.
That dash of warm silver color was moving away from his gaze, and he felt cold in his palm.
“Will you miss me when I’m gone?”
“Of course, I will. I’ll miss you so, so much.”
The moist night breeze gently stroked his face. The warmth radiating from his left breast made him smile. It did not feel bitter but nostalgic, as he reminisced about his past.
The silver-haired girl was never too far away in his heart. She was still living in a corner of his memories as she called out to him under the setting sun.
‘I’m Tang Wulin, and my ambition is to go to the Star Sea.’
‘When that ordinary grass seed germinates into a lush green field, will I be able to hold your hand and visit the Star Sea again?’
“Brother, I like you, I love you. I’m willing to spend all my time to accompany you in the future and be by your side always. Please allow me to love you. Is that alright? I’m serious.” Na’er’s expression was so solemn that even the Atlas Douluo Yun Ming on the tower ship felt shocked.
Initially, Tang Wulin’s desolate and despairing heart could not help being moved. If one were to ask how he prioritized the females in his heart, his mother, Na’er, and she would each occupy a permanent position.
Even so, he never thought that she would talk about all this to him during the Sea God Fated Date Festival with everyone’s attention fixated on them.
“Na’er, you’re my sister!”
“No, I’m not. I’m only your Na’er. We are not related by blood. I’m only your Na’er. I refuse to be your sister anymore. I’m only willing to be your Na’er,” she spoke stubbornly.
Tang Wulin’s body was shivering ever so slightly.
“Time’s up, Na’er. I can’t allow you to continue speaking anymore so as to be fair to everyone.” Tang Yinmeng’s voice sounded slightly odd.
He once vowed not to allow anyone to make Na’er cry, yet he never expected that person to be himself.
‘Na’er, why do you have to be so foolish?’
There was an indescribable feeling in the depth of his heart for some unknown reason. Just as Na’er said, they were not biological siblings after all. Na’er was the sister he took in, the sister he had watched over diligently.
Na’er suddenly raised her head and looked toward Tang Wulin with a burning gaze. “There would never have been anyone else in your heart if I hadn’t left you in the beginning.”
“Junior Wulin, please make your choice,” Lan Muzi urged with a deep voice.
Tang Wulin inhaled a deep breath strenuously as the energy in his entire body seemed to be shifting.
He questioned his conscience, and the answer was unusually clear to him. He did not want to hurt Na’er, but more than that, he did not want to lie to her. Besides, everything was so complicated. He did not wish to give up this opportunity even if it seemed extremely vague.
“I’m sorry, Na’er. I choose Female Number Seventeen!” Tang Wulin exerted almost all the strength of his entire body as he spoke those few simple words.
The scene in the sky exploded this time akin to that fragile heart being broken brutally in the past.
Tang Wulin and Gu Yuena’s silhouette appeared in the sky once again. Tears were streaming down Gu Yuena’s face at the moment. The tears did not belong to Gu Yue, but it belonged to Na’er. It was Na’er who had always loved Tang Wulin deepy and tried everything she could to influence Gu Yue so that she would not hurt him!
“Na’er…” said Tang Wulin with a shaky voice. Despite his powerful abilities, his heart wrenched in agony when he recalled that moment through his Thought Concretization.
He was so reluctant to hurt Na’er. Neither could he go against his heart at the time.
However, the way he rejected her at that moment still breaks his heart now. Had he known that his rejection would make Na’er disappear completely, perhaps he would rather suffer for the rest of his life than to reject her.
On the other hand, the color on Na’er’s face faded the second Tang Wulin spoke those words. Subconsciously, she backed one step behind with half of her foot in the water. Her body swayed for a while before she managed to stabilize herself.
Lan Muzi swallowed a gulp, and then he looked toward Female Number Seventeen. “According to the rules, you must remove your bamboo hat and veil now. Then, listen to his love confession for a minute.”
Female Number Seventeen paused for a moment before she raised her hands slowly to remove the bamboo hat and veil from her head.
It was a pale charming face with black hair and black eyes. She did not appear extraordinary when compared to Dai Yun’er and Na’er by her side. She was completely concealed by the radiance emitting from the two females beside her.
Her face was covered in tears since earlier, tears that she could not control. She watched him as her lips trembled gently.
Tang Wulin smiled when he saw the tears on her face. He smiled because she was not treating him mercilessly. He suddenly felt like everything was worth it when he saw those tears.
“You should choose her.” Gu Yue turned her head to the side and looked toward Na’er’s direction.
Na’er did not utter a word.
Again, Gu Yue spoke something baffling, “I don’t want to win.”
On the other hand, Na’er smiled. Her pale face was filled with a faint grin at that moment. She puffed up her chest as she suddenly looked toward Gu Yue with a slight arrogance. “There are things that aren’t up to you.”
Gu Yue shut her eyes as tears streamed down her face. “However, do you know how great a price he would have to pay? Our life would be unbearably tough in the future.”
Na’er spoke with determination, “I don’t. I can only hope that I’m capable of giving myself entirely to him.”
This portion of memories belonged to Gu Yuena. It was Gu Yuena’s turn to project her Thought Concretization.
When the scene of her saying ‘do you know how great a price he would have to pay?’ played, Tang Wulin could not refrain himself from shutting his eyes in pain.
Yes, the price that he had to pay was finally here. It was here on this very day. The agony wreaked havoc through his mind and body. The agony was leading him down the abyss once again.
On the other hand, it was precisely during that moment that he felt Gu Yuena’s love for him in its truest sense.
Lan Muzi could not understand either but the Fated Date Festival had to go on. “Wulin, it’s your turn. You have a minute.”
Tang Wulin shook his head and stared at Gu Yue. “I don’t need a minute. I only need to ask her a question.”
“Gu Yue, I’ve only ever loved one girl in this world, and that girl is you. Do you love me?”
He once had thousands and millions of words he wished to tell her, yet when he was confronting her, he could only speak these words. These words were enough for him. He needed an answer, an answer that could make him stop caring for everything else or make him walk into another world.
He raised his right hand and extended his turned palm. Glossy golden scales spread from the exposed wrist all the way to his palm. Shining, golden claws appeared with his five fingers flexed inward. He pointed the sharp claw straight at the top of his head.
A gush of thick blood essence fluctuation burst out from his body abruptly. It was difficult to describe, but during that split second when the thick blood essence aura appeared, every single soul master with a dragon-type martial soul at the scene gave out a muffled grunt. They appeared ghastly pale. Even Long Yue was no exception.
“Brother, don’t!” Na’er shrieked yet she dared not move at all. She could clearly see the golden radiance pulsating on the Golden Dragon Claw. Tang Wulin would only need to lower his palm ever so slightly before he would graze his head.
“I only need to know the answer, your heart’s answer. The genuine answer. Don’t lie to me. I can tell from your gaze and your bloodline. I can sense if you’re telling the truth.” Tang Wulin stared at Gu Yue with a burning gaze without the slightest concession.
Gu Yue looked at him absentmindedly. Tears were no longer streaming down her face.
All of a sudden, she felt as if her entire body was about to have a breakdown. She nodded strenuously as tears poured down her face once more. She could not help kneeling onto the lotus leaf. She could not speak anymore but only nodded vigorously.
Tang Wulin smiled proudly as he put down his right hand. He took a step forward and stood before her.
He pulled her up from the lotus leaf into his arms. An enormous creature emerged underneath Tang Wulin’s body accompanied by a valiant dragon’s roar that pushed his and her body into the air.
Tang Wulin did not know that after experiencing the joy which only lasted a moment, he would need to endure the agony that he was utterly incapable of withstanding at this exact moment. He had not expected that he would need to confront the person he loved.
In the crisis which involved all mankind, his only option was to kill her so he could perhaps solve the crisis once and for all.
Yet, the girl who nodded strenuously at him had loved him with all her might. How could he bring himself to do it?
Intense emotions affected every single person, not only mankind but the soul beasts similarly.
The Jade Swan was already sobbing profusely of all the numerous beasts. Even a powerful soul beast as magnificent as the Bear Lord was twitching as well.
The Beast God watched the scene in a daze. He knew about the relationship between Gu Yuena and Tang Wulin, but he knew much less than what he had just learned. Shrek Academy was protected by the Atlas Douluo in the past. How would he have the courage to enter? He had only now known that Her Highness had formed such a deep relationship with Tang Wulin since the Sea God’s Fated Date Festival. It was precisely this relationship that made her unable to bear killing him all this while.
Tang Wulin’s real pain lasted only five days. Perhaps, the pain that Her Highness endured in her heart for so many years knowing that she could never possibly be with him must be even more excruciating!
All of a sudden, Gu Yue raised the Silver Dragon Spear in her hand with tears streaming down her face.
“It’s time for you to know something.”
The Thought Concretization scene appeared once again. However, only Tang Wulin could see it this time.
The Sea God Lake in the early morning had a mysterious beauty to it. Mist clouded over the surface of the lake while blue waves rippled on the water.
She stood by the lakeside for a very long time. Her shoulders were covered with the morning dew, yet she did not have any intention to brush it off.
She appeared like an elf with her silver hair blowing in the morning breeze as she gazed distantly into the foggy dawn.
Her large purple eyes reflected the lakewater. The corners of her lips cracked into a faint smile.
Another woman walked over silently and stood by her side. Her black hair blowing in the wind made her glow with health. There was a faint blush on her charming face.
However, when she saw the other woman, her smile vanished.
They stood side by side as they gazed into the crystal clear lake water before them.
“You’ve won!” Na’er spoke in a soft yet relaxed manner.
“It seems like you really want me to win.” Gu Yue frowned.
Na’er chuckled. “Yes! I actually want you to win badly as I figured that you’d win anyhow. I understand him too well. Can you believe it? I exist only as an episode in his life. I confessed my love for him, just so I’ve a suitable excuse to leave.”
“He would be sad if you were to leave,” Gu Yue spoke.
Na’er shook her head with self-mockery. “I had lost. Am I allowed to stay? However, I had known that I’d certainly lose. Anyway, I had to lose, otherwise, he would’ve died for real, right?”
Gu Yue was silent.
Na’er sighed softly. “Back when we were betting, I made a firm resolution to place the bet, because I knew that you only pretended to kill him yet you wished to appear flawless in your soul. I didn’t have the choice but to comply with you. Otherwise, you’d have a flaw in your soul at the time which meant you’d kill him without the slightest hesitation.”
“Do you regret your choice now?” Na’er asked.
Gu Yue was slightly stunned. “Regret? I don’t know.” She genuinely did not know if she regretted or not.
Na’er spoke, “If you didn’t wish for all of this to happen, then you shouldn’t have established the method to integrate into the human world back in the beginning. Facts proved that your practice was right. Only by understanding mankind, can you truly discover the method to destroy them. However, we’ve discovered that not all mankind is completely useless. At least, mankind’s empathy is something that we don’t have. That’s why there’s you and me when we were young. We had no choice but to seal ourselves in order to become more like humans, so we could truly integrate ourselves into human society. That was how part of our spirit which belonged to mankind was born.”
“When you realized that mankind’s sentiment in you was getting out of control, you requested me to erase it by force. By then, it was already impossible. It would’ve caused you great harm. On the other hand, all this was because my brother brought me love and warmth, so I understood mankind’s sentiment.”
“You stripped me away from your body, because you had no other choice and made me into an autonomous individual. However, I’d always be a part of you even when we’re two separate individuals. That was why you placed a bet with me to find out whether my brother would fall in love with you and abandon me. If you were to win, then it would prove that mankind’s sentiment was fake, so I’d merge into your body once again. On the other hand, if you were to lose, then you’d make me into a complete individual as you promised. Isn’t that correct? What a waste that I’ve your intelligence but mankind’s sentiment. It didn’t take long for me to realize that it was utterly impossible. I take up thirty percent of your overall power. You would never be you anymore if I became an integral whole in the end. Thus, you’ll never abandon me. The only choice is either we merge back together or you’ve a flaw. Hence, if you lose, then you’ll certainly kill my brother and force me to merge with you. Am I right?”
Gu Yue stared at Na’er. Her charming face turned pale as she listened to Na’er’s rhetoric.
“Gu Yue, do you know that I was willing to bet with you because you totally don’t understand mankind’s emotions? You assumed that my brother and I had a romantic relationship. Actually, you’re wrong. We have a family relationship. Perhaps, I didn’t treat him as such, but he considers me as his sister. On the other hand, he’s not treating you with affection but true romantic love.”
“Love and affection are two completely different things. Thus, he has never abandoned me nor betrayed me despite choosing you. In that sense, I’ve lost. Yet, you won’t be getting the result you wished for. Thus, it’s truly difficult to tell who won actually.”
Gu Yue looked at her deeply. “Do you really think that I don’t realize you’ve been planning all these?”‘
Na’er smiled. “Of course, you knew. How can you possibly not figure this out when you’re so intelligent? Just as when you attempted to be estranged from my brother, you already sensed that your feelings were affected. Unfortunately, love has a subtle influence on your character. It was already too late when you realized that something was wrong because he already had a place in your heart. Thus, you’ve been attempting to break free with great effort for a long time. Yet, the more time passes, the more he begins to grow and take root in your heart.”
“Gu Yue, do you realize that we are inherently too naive whether we are soul beasts or divine beasts? Moreover, no matter how powerful your energy or how vast your spiritual power, there’s no way you can resist that emotion once we are engaged with matters of the heart. It has no form or shape, yet it truly exists.”
Gu Yue spoke bitterly, “So, do you think that he won’t matter anymore by saying this? Do you really think so?”
Na’er sighed softly. “At least, he’ll live longer. When he becomes powerful enough with time or when you’re incapable of fighting him anymore, I believe that no one will be capable of killing him. Gu Yue, face your emotions or enmity will only blind you.”
Gu Yue suddenly spoke in rage, “You’re just like a human now.”
Na’er smiled. “I was a human initially! I’ve always thought so. That’s why I refuse to destroy mankind, and I even hope to see us living together in peace. I love my brother and our parents too. I enjoy mankind’s world and its idiosyncrasies. You’ve won, yet you’ve lost too. However, I truly wish that you’ll have better results in the future. No, that all of you will have better results.”
Gu Yue’s breath quickened. “You really think that I’m incapable of killing him mercilessly?”
Na’er shook her head. “Of course, you can’t. You can’t since the beginning. Even in my absence, you can’t either. Otherwise, why do you wait until now? Since when have you been so hesitant? Perhaps, you stood a chance when you were hesitant the first time, but you’ll probably never kill him again after you’ve been hesitant thrice. I understand you well enough, so you must be clear about this in your heart too. After we’ve merged, you’ll be me and I’ll be you. You’ll be affected even more and have great difficulty in making up your mind. You must love him. My brother is truly outstanding. Even though we don’t know where his Golden Dragon King bloodline came from, I’ll admit that he’s the only one worthy of being our companion in the human world.”
Gu Yue’s face was filled with disappointment. “My biggest mistake was my decision in placing the bet with you back then. I shouldn’t have made you into a separate whole at all. At least, I’d still be able to exert my subtle influence if we had remained as one.”
“You’ve lost, and I’ve lost too. You’re right that I couldn’t bear to kill, that was why I could only leave him and allow time for our love to fade. Perhaps by doing so, I can kill him one day. Maybe, he can grow fast enough so he can kill me one day. You understand that the conflict between us can’t be reconciled. This is the conflict between mankind and the soul beasts. It’s also the conflict between Godhood and the divine beasts. It’s a conflict that we’re incapable of resolving.”
Na’er was quiet. She had become desolate. “When I’m gone, you’ll be gone too. He’s going to be sad.”
Gu Yue’s body shuddered. “It’s still going to be better than me staying by his side and our people losing control and taking the initiative to kill him. I’m still far from being able to walk out of the seal completely. The core is already awakened, but you know there are many powerful creatures amongst our people. There are even some powerhouses capable of becoming divine beasts that I’m incapable of suppressing. Hence, I’m destined to leave.”
Na’er bit her lips. “Perhaps you’re right. Gu Yue, you’ve truly changed. You know how to take others into consideration, especially him. I understand now that you must leave in order to give him more space to grow. You wish he’ll become powerful enough one day that there’s no way you can kill him. However, you know that’s impossible. The divine realm is non-existent. He’ll never achieve your level till eternity.”
Gu Yue smiled. “You know it but you don’t understand it. You’ve no idea what he means in my heart. Neither do you have any idea what percentage of me belongs to mankind now. You’re right that I do have regrets. I regretted my decision to issue the order to integrate into the human world at the beginning. However, I’ll need to fulfill my mission, yet there are those I’m unwilling to harm. Thus, let me face the contradiction alone. I don’t know what to do either, but I’ll need to move forward anyhow. Come back, Na’er. I’m no longer Gu Yue from today onward. My name will finally be complete, only that he won’t know it’ll be Gu Yuena!
Speckles of radiance shimmered as Gu Yue’s body suddenly turned translucent. It was a white silvery translucence as the hexagram underneath her feet conjured a layer of formless shield which enshrouded both of them.
If one were nearby, one would realize that there was not an ounce of energy fluctuation seeping out from that white, silvery world.
Na’er’s body turned translucent as well. She began walking toward Gu Yue one step at a time with tears streaming down her face.
“It’s hard for me to leave all this behind, everyone around me, my teachers and my brother!”
Gu Yue sighed. “However, you should also know that no matter how hard it is, you don’t have an energy source, so you’re destined to return. Otherwise, you’ll only vanish into thin air. You said it before that I am you and you are me when you’ve merged with me. I’ll let go of everything. Since the flaw has already turned into a rift, we shall then accept this rift together. Perhaps, everything will be different now.”
The silvery white silhouettes overlapped. Na’er and Gu Yue spread out their arms as the two silhouettes began to slowly fuse together. Gu Yue’s black hair vanished while her black eyes turned purple. Na’er’s child-like look disappeared as she slowly grew in size.
Once the two of them looked completely identical and had transformed into the Dragon Spear Goddess, who was three years older, the silver light suddenly vanished with a flash into the silent Sea God Lake.
“Na’er…” Tang Wulin’s vision blurred.
“Had you not forced me into making a choice, perhaps you won’t be in so much pain now. Had you allowed me to leave in the past, perhaps you’ll be able to face this calmly now. Na’er wouldn’t have left you either. I said that before at the time. You should’ve chosen her instead.”
The light shadow vanished. The Silver Dragon Princess held the Silver Dragon Spear on one side, while Tang Wulin who held the Golden Dragon Spear appeared lost.
So, it turned out that this happened in the past. In order to help Tang Wulin achieve his dream, Na’er sacrificed herself.
Whoever won the bet felt like a loser to Tang Wulin. Perhaps, he was the only winner in this situation.
Yet, he wondered what he would do if he were given another chance to choose.
He had no idea. Yes, even he had no idea at all.
Yet, the memories reminded him of something deep in his mind. Gradually, he calmed down.
“I have no regrets,” said Tang Wulin softly.