Ripples came from a deep cave in the mountain, from the four elegant women holding their hands in a circle and releasing prismatic lights.
Next to them stood a grizzled old man with a long beard and a fine young man with soft features, in his twenties. But his waning face betrayed his fragile health.
He coughed on and off, his eyes filled with worry.
“Elder Xu, wasn’t senior sister Ruohua’s condition light? Why isn’t it improving? Should we notify father and the Venerables?” The young man sighed.
Elder Xu smiled, “Young master, these four are executing the Four Elements Cycle Array, holding metal, wood, water and fire. And by connecting with the earth, the cycle is complete. Under the effect of this great cycle, Ruohua’s condition will improve in no time at all. There’s no need to bother Sect Leader and the others over such a trifle.”
The young man nodded, but was worried still.
After another ripple, the four women took back their power and the prismatic glow faded.
They opened their eyes and stood up. Shui Ruohua bowed to the other three in gratitude, “Thank you, junior sisters for saving me.”
“Senior sister, it’s nothing.” The others returned her gesture.
The young man walked over impatiently and grew excited at Shui Ruohua’s healthy state, “Cough~, senior sister Ruohua, are you alright?”
“Ha-ha-ha, of course, silly brother.” Shui Ruohua ruffled his hair and the boy smiled.
They had grown up together and were practically kin. Despite the difference in status, he still treated her like family.
Just then, an icy tone echoed, “Senior sister, since you’re alright, I’ll return to my training.”
The woman in white caught their attention, possessing a blinding beauty but an icy character.
No other than Chu Qingcheng.
The young man stared at Chu Qingcheng’s delicate face, then shied away. When he finally mustered his courage, he said “Junior sister Qingcheng, isn’t it dull having cultivated day in day out since the moment you came to Mystical Heaven Sect? You’ve finally taken a walk outside yet you want to return already?”
“Young master Shaoyu, practice makes perfect and cultivation requires dedication. The only reason I’m in Mystical Heaven Sect is to cultivate. If not for senior sister Ruohua’s wounds needing the Four Elements Cycle Array, I would never have walked outside.” Chu Qingcheng’s icy tone came.
The others shook their heads.
[Junior sister Qingcheng has always been a frozen blade, cold inside and out.]
The young man sighed. [I’ve seen beauties all my life, yet the only one to have touched my heart is this ice princess.]
[Besides being so uninterested in others, she also keeps everyone at a distance.]
Xuan Shaoyu had a bitter smile, his wane face turning whiter.
Shui Ruohua knew his thinking fully well and shook her head. [Not just anyone can thaw the frozen heart of an ice princess.]
“Junior sister Chu, please wait.”
Shui Ruohua called out to her before she left.
Chu Qingcheng turned around in puzzlement.
Shui Ruohua said, “As I was in danger while getting the herb, I met someone. He seemed to have a connection with you so I hope junior sister can attest.”
“With me?” Frowning, Chu Qingcheng looked even more skeptical. [Didn’t third young master Han hurt you? What does he have to do with me?]
Elder Xu was also curious, “Ruohua, the disciples said Demon Soul Sect’s third young master Han hurt you. Qingcheng and they have no relationship so why would you ask this?”
“Elder, allow me to explain. Third young master Han did hurt me, but…” Shui Ruohua gave Chu Qingcheng a long look, “The one to save me was from the Demon Scheming Sect.”
They all looked at her in shocked silence. Xuan Shaoyu even more so, “There’s nothing but open hostility between our sects. Why would they ever go on Demon Scheming Sect’s bad side for us?”
“He didn’t save Mystical Heaven Sect, just that it had something to do with Qingcheng.” Shui Ruohua had a bitter smile.
It left them even more confused about Chu Qingcheng’s relationship with Demon Scheming Sect.
Chu Qingcheng was just as confused.
Elder Xu’s beard shook and he stared at Shui Ruohua in all seriousness, “Ruohua, explain just what is going on.”
“It’s like this…”
Shui Ruohua got her thoughts together and said, “We discovered a 9th grade herb in a valley, the Tri-color Soul Fixing Grass…”
“That’s great! Did you get it?” Elder Xu jumped in.
Shui Ruohua rolled her eyes and revealed the herb in a flash of white, “Of course. I’d go through hell if it means I can heal brother Shaoyu.”
“Sister Ruohua, thank you. Cough~” Xuan Shaoyu had a coughing fit as he thanked her.
Elder Xu was overjoyed, “Go on, go on, ha-ha-ha…”
“We couldn’t get a hold of it actually because Demon Soul Sect came for it as well.” Shui Ruohua explained, “Demon Soul Sect’s third young master Han was strong, and I ended up badly hurt after one move.”
“Third young master Han is despicable to not even spare women. The next time we sisters meet him, we’ll give him a lesson in manners with the Four Elements Cycle Array!” One pretty lady in red robes snorted.
Shui Ruohua glanced over, but smiled and wiggled her cute button nose, “Third young master Han isn’t just anybody. Don’t underestimate him. But even a young master from the middle three sects, had met his nemesis this time.”
All turned quiet, even the fiery lady, hanging on Shui Ruohua’s every word.
“When I was on the brink of death, a man showed up. He merely flicked his hand and scarred the land in two halves, forcing third young master Han to never overstep that line. Even as the man left, third young master Han never crossed it.”
Shui Ruohua’s heart thrummed as well, recalling that scene, “He is the one who gave me the herb, a man from Demon Scheming Sect.”
Everyone gasped and looked shocked.
[Why would Demon Scheming Sect help them without rhyme or reason?]
The lady in red blinked her big purty eyes, her smile naughty, “Senior sister Ruohua, did he fancy you and wanted some dual cultivation? You mustn’t fall for it, demonic cultivators are vile and insidious.”
Shui Ruohua winced, then shook her head, even as she felt let down for some reason, “He gave me the herb with one condition. His target wasn’t me, but…”
Shui Ruohua looked at Chu Qingcheng, “He asked two questions about junior sister Chu Qingcheng, then gave me the herb. “
“Which two?” Chu Qingcheng asked eagerly.
“If you’re in Mystical Heaven Sect and if you’re doing well.” Shui Ruohua replied.
Chu Qingcheng asked again, even more eager, “What’s his name?”
“I don’t know, he asked me to forget all about it. But, those four Radiant Stage pygmies called him Steward Zhuo…”
“It’s really him…”
Chu Qingcheng shook with pure joy. Her icy features melted into a beautiful smile, “He… misses me…”
Two trails of tears accompanied her bright smile…
Everyone was stumped having never seen her smile and finding it a work of art.
They also never expected her beauty to be so radiant. An unsmiling Chu Qingcheng was already a worldly beauty yet now, she was divine.
“Just who is he, to make junior sister Qingcheng so overjoyed just from hearing his name?” Balling his fist, Xuan Shaoyu’s eyes glinted with envy.
Shui Ruohua shook her head, but Zhuo Fan’s courteous manner made her smile, “He is a demon, a demon who is able to worm his way into your heart…”