One grave and one person in a hushed world. The wind was gently blowing like a gentle hand caressing every inch of the flesh. A warm sensation accompanied its coolness, inducing a drowsy desire.
Li Qiye lied there and whispered intimately. No one knows if he was simply expressing himself or letting go of all the burden.
“The reason I didn’t want to go back was not because I couldn’t forget the past. That’s all it is, the past.” Li Qiye said with a trace of helplessness: “Whenever I come to Rainbow City, I can’t help but recall your unforgettable words.”
A prolonged silence ensued as Li Qiye became quite sentimental. He eventually lifted his head to look at the tombstone: “I came back in order to say goodbye. My journey this time will be full of the unknown.”
“In the nine heavens and ten earths, I’m not afraid of the godfiends, emperors, or deities, not even the geezers from the Qian Clan. Sooner or later, I will trample on them all. I will massacre all those who try to stop me and even annihilate their clans completely!” Li Qiye claimed while looking at the horizon.
However, his mood soured once more: “The only uncertainty is the great war at the end of the world. No one knows what will come of this world. Perhaps my era will be everlasting… or it will be utterly destroyed. But someone needs to take this final step. I won’t stop no matter what the final outcome might be. No, I can’t be stopped and I won’t many compromises either!”
“You told me that the heavens is too unreachable and that there is nothing bad about being a trapped ant in this world.” He mournfully said: “But I will not be an ant! I can’t handle being an ant! Whether it be the Immortal Demon Grotto or the end of the world, I will continue even if the path is endless!
“Just like back then when you asked me if I wanted to stay. My answer will always be ‘never’!” His eyes became determined: “In years past, some have broken my bones, some have exposed me to all kinds of suffering, some sealed my world completely, and some mocked and reviled me…
“Then there were the many who loved me, whom I loved, and those who were loyal to me… They slowly disappeared in the river of time… But whether if it’s my enemies, friends, or even lovers, none of them can stop me from reaching the end! I will either become eternal or mere ashes! These are the only two possible outcomes for me.
“When you asked why I didn’t indulge myself and became a happy and satisfied mortal, this is my answer. I refuse to compromise with anyone!” He became silent after stating this.
“This might be our final farewell. As for Hong Tian, it will be up to her. I don’t blame her, but if she blames me, I can’t do anything about it. Farewell, Wenxin, the one who understood me and my ambition the most.” Eventually, he gave the tombstone a deep look before leaving without turning back.
Jian Wenxin was an indelible name that would forever stay in his heart.
In that distant yet brilliant era, Empress Hong Tian had yet to ascend to her throne. There existed many apex geniuses and incredible characters. Three particular girls reigned supreme for the whole duration of this era; many men were completely overshadowed by them.
There was a widespread phrase during that period to describe the three ladies: Hong Tian — the Ill-starred Conqueror, Jian Wenxin — the Ocean’s Wisdom, Mu Yueli — the Immortal’s Legacy. 1
Empress Hong Tian was not particularly excellent in terms of innate talents, but her ambition had no bounds. Because of this, many people mocked her for having “a will higher than the heavens and a fate thinner than paper” when she made her dao debut.
As the Dark Crow, on the day when he met this girl with that determined look in her eyes, the first thing he taught her was not profound merit laws but one sentence that would forever stay with her — can the sparrow and swallow know the will of the great swan?!
This phrase stuck with the little miss for her whole life. From then on, her name changed to Hong Tian, a name that would illuminate the eons and deter both gods and devils!
Her will was higher than the heavens, but her fate was thinner than paper. It was definitely not easy for her during that brilliant era since her ordinary talents couldn’t reach the apex compared to the other geniuses.
Nevertheless, even before such foes, she was determined to reign above the nine heavens! Such an unrealistic dream left her ridiculed by countless people and made her suffer many painful hardships.
During those long years, she failed and cried. Tears and blood were spilled, but she persevered onward and made it very far with a crow as her companion.
There was no lack of failure in her life. She had lost more than just once to the hands of Jian Wenxin.
This was a woman full of wisdom who had deep ties with the Dark Crow since youth. After her debut, she aimed for the Heaven’s Will and became one of the strongest rivals of Immortal Emperor Hong Tian.
With her great wisdom, she was able to scheme and strategize much to the chagrin of the empress.
However, despite being so gifted at birth, she chose to be ordinary at the end of her path. Her experience made her give up on the Heaven’s Will as she chose to stay with the Dark Crow and plotted for him behind the curtains.
It could be said that the empress’ unstoppable conquest, to a large extent, was to Jian Winxen’s credit while being behind the scenes.
Born to be extraordinary yet chose to be ordinary. She wanted to stay in this world and lived the rest of her life as a mortal. Alas, she was still exceptional due to her boundless wisdom. After becoming an empress, Hong Tian consulted Jian Wenxin about a certain matter.
At that time, they shared the same belief. Jian Wenxin came up with a perfect plan while the empress carried it out. Because of this, the Dark Crow and the empress had a fall out.
For the empress, there was nothing more important than the Dark Crow. In this world, he was the only one who was there for her when she smiled and cried. No matter how difficult it was, his shadow would always be beside her!
The always-stubborn empress was never stubborn before him, but not this time. The two had a great quarrel and from then on, they parted ways and continued on their individual paths.
Jian Wenxin had augured the mysteries of the heaven and earth and spied into its secrets in order to concoct the plan. Because of this, she wasted too much energy and arrived at her deathbed. Even with this turn of events, she wanted to have a peaceful end with the Dark Crow next to her.
After her departure from this world, Li Qiye buried her in this incredibly beautiful place. He then left to a faraway place and began his slumber.
From then on, he never stepped foot into the Jian Clan again. It was not because he blamed her for that particular event, but because he always remembered that one phrase from her.
It was because she knew him and his thoughts the best that made it difficult for him to forget those words. He finally returned in this generation and visited her grave because it might be their final farewell.
He sighed after leaving the cemetery. However, he also felt relieved for finally returning after so long. At last, he was able to say goodbye one last time.
Jian Xiaotie, who was standing guard outside of the old courtyard, immediately stood up after seeing Li Qiye coming out. He didn’t dare to believe his eyes and had no words to describe his feelings.
This was because he had heard of a legend in their clan. He didn’t know whether it was real or not, but he felt that he was seeing a ghost instead of Li Qiye.
Li Qiye looked at him and asked: “Is something wrong?”
Jian Xiaotie was startled and quickly regained his mind to say: “Brother Li, there is a problem. Miss Hong and Daoist Zhang have been captured by Shangguan Feiyan.”
“Didn’t I tell you to take good care of them?” Li Qiye frowned in response.
Jian Xiaotie wryly smiled and explained: “Brother Li, Feiyan was crazy as she searched for you. Since she couldn’t find you, she captured Miss Hong and Daoist Zhang instead. I could only do my best and stopped her from hurting them in the slightest.”
“She said that as long as you go meet her, she will let them go.” Jian Xiaotie was a bit ashamed as he continued on: “I have consulted the ancestors about this. If Feiyan doesn’t release them, they will force her do so.”
1. These are four-word phrases being used as adjectives, essentially secondary titles for the three. Hong Tian is considered to be unlucky or ill-fated with a bad constitution, so that’s her name. Ocean’s Wisdom used to be “as wise as the ocean”, but I like Ocean’s Wisdom more. Immortal’s Legacy used to be “as great as an immortal”, but it is what it is for the same reason above. The real meanings behind “legacy” are: 1/ physical beauty 2/ natural temperament/style/aura 3/ natural talents/constitution 4/ natural characters/morals. It’s hard to find a descriptor here that fits all of that, so legacy it is.