Looking for Proofreaders for this Novel
A woman and an old man walked down a forest road.
She was tall, mesmerizing and emanating a perfume that drew in butterflies. The wizened old man had a white goatee, yet his eyes flashed with vigilance now and then.
The two arrived at the foot of a mountain and looked to the summit. The beauty eyed the elder but her tone was laced with anger, “Zhuo Fan, you better behave. If I find you have any evil intentions towards Blackwind Mountain, I won’t let you off.”
“Ha-ha-ha, relax Miss. This old man only came to investigate. Moreover, what could a lone man possibly do?” The old man’s laughter reached the heavens above.
Snorting, Lei Yuting ignored him, “Furthermore, if you harm even a hair of Xiao Cui, I will end you.”
“Relax, I took her hostage because we don’t trust each other. On one hand, I needed some insurance. On the other…” Zhuo Fan spoke in a mysterious voice, “It is for your own good.”
“For my own good?”
Lei Yuting didn’t understand, but the only response she got was Zhuo Fan shaking his head.
The two climbed the mountain in silence. Halfway up, they got to the first checkpoint.
A strong man jumped out in their path. But when he saw Lei Yuting, he bowed, “Ah, so it’s Young Miss. Weren’t you in Windgaze City, why…”
“I had to return!”
Lei Yuting jutted out her chin, walking without sparing the man a glance.
“He is on Yang Ming’s side.”
Zhuo Fan whispered, “Tell me, if your task in Windgaze City was so secret, why is it that a common bandit knows of it?”
Lei Yuting frowned.
Her previous unshakable trust in Yang Ming was gnawed at by Zhuo Fan these past few days. She, herself, started to notice many more inconsistencies in Yang Ming’s behavior. The same could be said about the man they just met. He was watching her every movement, but what she used to take as normal before, now it felt like a warning.
“You’ll see. Once we arrive, Yang Ming will welcome you,” Zhuo Fan smiled as he sped up. Lei Yuting watched his figure with a heart filled with doubts.
They passed several more checkpoints before reaching the summit; they now stood in front of the Blackwind Mountain camp’s gate. Since Zhuo Fan was impersonating an old man and was led by Lei Yuting, no one questioned him.
But just as they stepped foot across the gate, a man appeared.
He was tall and majestic, just that a wicked smile smeared his handsome face. Zhuo Fan knew in a flash he was Yang Ming.
“See, all your actions were reported back,” Zhuo Fan raised an eyebrow at Lei Yuting, like a child who won the bet.
But Lei Yuting didn’t humor him by playing his game, and instead had a solemn face.
Zhuo Fan had been feeding her doubts every step of the way, particularly regarding Yang Ming, who might’ve been a spy from the Hell Valley.
She didn’t want to believe it since he was the fiancé her godfather arranged for her. It was hard for her to change her perception of a man who had the trust of everyone, her godfather included.
But these doubts were the fruit of Zhuo Fan’s careful wording along the way.
Biting her lip, Lei Yuting saw Yang Ming with a complicated gaze and braced herself for what was to come.
“Sister Yuting, shouldn’t you be in Windgaze City? Why the sudden return?” Yang Ming approached her with a smile and turned to Zhuo Fan, “And this is…”
Lei Yuting hesitated a moment, “Senior Brother, Veiled Dragon Pavilion isn’t someone we can provoke, while Hell Valley’s men aren’t worthy of trust. This operation has too many dangers so I’ve put the men on stand by to observe for now.”
Yang Ming’s face changed, not much but enough for Zhuo Fan to notice the killing intent in his eyes.
“Sister Yuting, Master’s kindness is as heavy as a mountain. How can we not give our lives for such a man? How can we be so selfish? Furthermore, aren’t we supposed to avenge Master?”
“I am aware, however…” Lei Yuting frowned, “We cannot disregard the lives of our brothers. This is a 2nd ranked alchemist I have found to save godfather. We will settle this vengeance once he recovers.”
Sensing his cue, Zhuo Fan cupped his hands, “Ha-ha-ha, this old man has wandered the pugilistic world and cured countless illnesses. No injury or disease can escape my trained eye…”
“Humph, if you were so great, we’d have known about you. Who are you trying to deceive?”
Yang Ming interrupted Zhuo Fan bragging, “Junior Sister, only Returning Dragon Palm can heal wounds this martial art caused. Don’t you trust me?”
Lei Yuting recalled the times she spent with Yang Ming and her heart was in chaos.
Zhuo Fan stood between the two and asked Yang Ming, “Little Brother, give me a chance. I’m an expert healer.”
Yang Ming was furious and sent a palm attack. Zhuo Fan felt the power behind it but didn’t dodge, opting to take the strike with clenched teeth.
Despite not using a martial art, the palm backed up by the power of an early Bone Tempering cultivator struck Zhuo Fan’s chest and sent him sprawling while coughing blood.
“Why did you attack if you refused him entry?” Lei Yuting yelled.
Zhuo Fan staggered to his feet after puking another mouthful of blood, “This old man can’t take too many hits. Miss, I’m sorry but I will have to refuse this deal. I should’ve known no good comes from dealing with bandits.”
“What did you say?”
Yang Ming was enraged and slapped again, but Lei Yuting stopped him.
“I invited him. If you want to hit him, you’ll have to go through me.”
“Humph, let him try for all I care. But if this healer makes the Master worse, he won’t leave this place alive,” Yang Ming flung his sleeve and walked out in anger.
Lei Yuting felt wronged and glared at Zhuo Fan, “It’s all your fault senior brother ignores me. I was a fool for believing you. There’s no way my caring senior brother could harm Godfather.”
“Miss, didn’t your godfather teach you how to judge people?” Zhuo Fan wiped the blood from his mouth with a smile, “But this is perfect since he bought it.”
Lei Yuting was shocked, then doubtful.
“When you talk to someone, you don’t pay attention to what they speak but how they act.”
Zhuo Fan’s grinned evilly, “The reason he stopped me before was because he didn’t know of my level. Thanks to his palm strike, he gauged my strength was negligible and let me pass. You tell me if he’s caring or not.”
Lei Yuting replayed the earlier scene while leaving out Yang Ming’s words. All of his actions went according to Zhuo Fan’s conjecture. To the point that when he left, Yang Ming showed a faint smile to her.
[Can it be…]
Lei Yuting didn’t dare finish. If she did, her heart would be in too much pain and wouldn’t be able to stop herself from confronting Yang Ming. At that time, the two would break all relations.
Zhuo Fan patted her shoulder, “Come, take me to your godfather.”
“Damn swindler! It’s fine if you want to act but there’s no point in seeing him,” Lei Yuting could hardly reign her emotions.
Zhuo Fan smiled while shrugging nonplussed, “When you act, you need to be thorough. Moreover, the act hasn’t reached its climax.”
With the final word, Zhuo Fan walked forward and Lei Yuting followed.
As they passed, hundreds of eyes focused on them.
Lei Yuting felt uneasy from so many stares. What used to be eyes filled with respect, now held only wariness.
The two entered the Mountain Lord’s room and saw Yang Ming inside. He held a bowl of gruel, feeding the old man on the bed.
“Hack, I will hold you responsible for anything that happens to Master.”
Yang Ming smacked the bowl on the table and glared, then took a seat to the side to observe.
Zhuo Fan laughed inside as he inspected the patient.
When his fingers touched the old man’s wrist, he injected his Yuan Qi and what he saw stunned him. It was all clear to him now.
“He has no external wounds,” Zhuo Fan shook his head.
Yang Ming rolled his eyes and snorted, “Is there a need to even say it?”
“But neither… internal ones.”
Yang Ming’s eyes squinted and his hands tightened.
He judged the 4th layer Qi Condensation Zhuo Fan as having no skill to speak of, but reality proved him wrong.
Yang Ming’s killing intent spiked!
“If Godfather isn’t injured, why can’t he move or speak?” Lei Yuting doubted Zhuo Fan’s diagnosis, thinking he was just putting on a show. [When you put up an act, try to make it believable.]
[How are you going to explain an immobilized Bone Tempering expert having no injuries?]
Zhuo Fan scratched his nose as he smiled, “This old man has concluded he has something foreign inside.”
Yang Ming snapped the corner of the table while the old man on the bed glared at Zhuo Fan. He wanted to speak with such ardor but he was powerless to do so.
Yet his emotional gaze said it all…