Chapter 1076 - The Race Abandoned by Fate
“No, we wood spirits always know to repay favors, let alone such a great favor as this one.”
Granny Qing Ye was the oldest among everyone present, so her words held the greatest weight. She said sincerely, “Young man, if you need something, feel free to tell us. We will definitely try our best to repay you.”
“No need.” Yun Che shook his head. “The reason why I saved him isn’t because I was feeling righteous. My original target was a Wood Spirit Orb.”
“Wh-what?” Yun Che’s reply cased all the wood spirits to immediately raise their heads. Their expressions slightly changed.
“The reason why I spared He Lin is because he is only a little boy. I couldn’t bear to. If it was another wood spirit, I would’ve definitely forcibly taken both their life and Wood Spirit Orb. Since that’s the case, there is no need for you to thank me.”
After seeing the sudden change in the wood spirit crowd’s faces, he turned around to leave and quickly headed for the exit.
“Wait,” shouted an old voice.
Yun Che’s foodsteps paused, yet he didn’t turn around as he said indifferently. “Don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone about this place.”
“No,” Granny Qing Ye’s walked to him with a half bent waist. “You saved Lin’er, so you are our entire clan’s benefactor. How could we possibly not believe you? You said that you needed a Wood Spirit Orb, right?”
Yun Che was stunned. He turned around.
Granny Qing Ye gently smiled, her cloudy eyes then looked at the middle aged wood spirit beside He Lin. “Qing Mu, let’s give Qiu Ling’s Wood Spirit Orb to our benefactor, shall we?”
A complicated turmoil surfaced in the eyes of the middle aged wood spirit named Qing Mu but he didn’t hesitate or make things difficult as he nodded lightly, “Of course.”
“Then that’s great.” Granny Qing Mu smiled. “Young man, we just so happen to have a Wood Spirit Orb within our clan. Qing Mu’s wife specifically left that one behind after sustaining grievous injuries in the past. Although many years have passed since then, since it was sealed in a nature profound formation, its spirit energy has not decreased at all, so it ought to help you out.”
Purposely left behind by a wood spirit, one whose spirit energy had yet to dissipate at all… this meant that it was a perfect Wood Spirit Orb with completely intact spirit energy, one that humans simply would never be able to forcibly take!!
Yun Che was excited. “Are… you really going to give it to me?”
“Hoho,” Qing Mu chuckled. “I would naturally not let any evil person take my deceased wife’s Wood Spirit Orb even if it meant my death. However, if it can repay the great benefactor who saved our young patriarch, I am sure even Qiu Ling in the heavens above would gladly consent.”
“It’s just that, in order to keep evil people from taking it, my seal is extremely tight. I will need at least two to four hours to undo its seal. I would need benefactor to wait here a while during this time.”
Yun Che spent a huge sum yet he did not forcibly take He Lin’s Wood Spirit Orb in the very end… But here, he was about to gifted a perfect Wood Spirit Orb.
Even though it was still incomparable to He Lin’s Royal Wood Spirit Orb, a Wood Spirit Orb with completely intact spirit energy still far surpassed the seventy percent intact spirit energy Wood Spirit Orb Yun Che needed.
The last of the melancholy in Yun Che’s heart was swept away as profound joy and gratitude bubbled from his heart. “If it’s like that… then thank you very much. I do indeed have an important reason to urgently need a Wood Spirit Orb.”
“No need to say thanks. Your great favor can never be surpassed no matter how we repay you,” Granny Qing Ye said. “Qing Mu, go on now. Once you’ve gotten it, you can directly hand it to our benefactor.”
Qing Mu complied and then flew away.
“That’s great! I didn’t want to part with big brother yet!” cheered He Lin. He excitedly came before Yun Che and tugged at his sleeve. “Big brother, is it okay if I show you our home? Even though it’s small, I’m sure you’ll like it.”
He Lin dragged him, formally inviting him into the little world that belonged to the wood spirits.
With green trees as houses, and flowers and grass for seats, this was an inconceivably pure world. Not even the slightest filth could be smelled from the air in this place.
Due to the avarice of humans, a race that originally received the protection of nature ended up in a more tragic and fallen state than any other race. They should have a deeply entrenched hatred for humans, yet when He Lin pulled him before wood spirits, one after the other and happily introduced him, they all expressed deep gratitude and heartfelt welcome. Perhaps they may have shown a bit of caution at first but he never felt the slightest bit of hatred from the very start.
Wood spirits possessed the world’s purest of powers and the purest of hearts. As Yun Che sensed this in its entirety, his heart intensely thobbed.
Even in the face of an enemy who was a hundred times more powerful than himself, his gaze would never cower. However, the clear purity in every one of these wood spirits’ emerald eyes made him not dare to look them straight in the eyes...
This kind of race ought to receive the utmost protection of nature, why do they have to bear such a cruel, unfair fate...
Because of humanity’s evil and greed...
And because they were weak.
The entire body of those belonging to the dragon race were also treasures but how could this world possibly dare to bully the clan of True Dragons in the Dragon God Realm?
“Big Sister Qing He!”
He Lin dragged Yun Che all the way to the ends of this little world. There was a huge garden that stretched far and wide, with all kinds of blossoming flowers flourishing in an explosion of colors. A colorfully dressed girl was at the center of the garden, gathering morning dew from the petals. Her graceful, lithe figure resembled a colorful, elegantly dancing butterfly within the myriad flowers. It was pleasing to the eye and intoxicating to the soul.
Amidst He Lin’s high pitched shout, the girl within the garden turned, her soft gaze following shortly after. He Lin introduced Yun Che with rosy cheeks. “This is Big Sister Qing He. Oh, her father is Uncle Qing Mu. Big Sister Qing, this is the big brother who saved me. Even though he’s a big brother, he’s super duper powerful, you know.”
The colorfully dressed girl looked to only be around fifteen or sixteen. Her bright face contained a young girl’s charming immaturity and a wood spirit’s beautiful purity. She gently bowed at Yun Che. “Thank you for saving our young patriarch, big brother.”
Once she said those words, she didn’t dare to look Yun Che in the eyes a second time. She lowered her head as a slight flush spread across her cheeks.
“Ah? Young patriarch, so you’ve brought Big Brother Benefactor here, no wonder I couldn’t find you anywhere!”
The sound of a girl’s voice, which resembled clear spring water, came from behind them as a girl around the same age as Qing He gently fluttered over. Behind her followed a handsome, tall and slender young wood spirit who looked to be around seventeen years old.
“Big Sister Fei Yan, Big Brother Qing Zhu!” He Lin shouted their names in a clear voice.
When the two arrived, they stared at Yun Che for a long while. The young wood spirit named Qing Zhu then deeply bowed toward Yun Che. “Big Brother Benefactor, you saved our young patriarch and… I don’t even know how we can repay you.”
“Thank you, Big Brother Benefactor.” The wood spirit girl named Fei Yan graciously bowed. Her clear, beautiful eyes then continued to curiously size Yun Che up. “There really are good people within humans too.”
“Of course,” He Lin said with some pompousness. “When father and mother were still alive, they used to tell me that all the time. I knew that big brother was a really good person at first glance.”
“Hmph! Young patriarch, you still have the gall to say that!?” Fei Yan raised a hand and heavily knocked He Lin on the forehead, fuming. “Do you know that you almost scared all of us to death!? Granny Qing Ye cried so many times. You… If you dare to do something like this again, I’m going to ignore you from then on.”
He Lin covered his hurt forehead and didn’t dare to retort. He weakly answered quite pitifully, “Big Sister Fei Yan, I know that I was wrong. I won’t dare to do it again. I only… I only wanted to go out to see the outside world. I never expected to be that unlucky… Uuu, I really won’t do it again.”
“Fei Yan, don’t speak to young patriarch like that. He will definitely be obedient from now on,” Qing He protectively said in a gentle voice. When she was speaking, she sneakily glanced at Yun Che before hurriedly lowering her head again.
“Hmph, in any case, I’ll be firmly looking after young patriarch from now on!” Fei Yan said while puffing her cheeks.
At this point, Qing Zhu couldn’t hold back his curiosity as he asked somewhat eagerly. “Young patriarch, what happened after you snuck out? And how is the outside world? Is it really as magical as what Granny Qing Ye and Uncle Qing Mu said it was? Tell us!”
“T-this…” He Lin said anxiously. “I got caught by someone not too long after I snuck out. A-after that, I was always scared, so I didn’t have time to think about anything else. Ah! Right!”
He Ling’s eyes suddenly flashed as he turned to Yun Che. “Big brother, how about you tell us about the outside world? Is that okay?”
He Lin’s words instantly brought them to their senses. Qin He, Fei Yan and Qing Zhu all immediately stared at Yun Che… who was the first human that came to their little world from the outside world. “Big Brother Benefactor, you must know a lot about the outside world. We really, really, really want to hear about it.”
Four pairs of emerald eyes flashed with the same anticipation and longing. These gazes made Yun Che’s soul suddenly clench, as though it had been pricked with a needle. They had always lived a life on the run and spent it amidst terror and caution. They were only safe in their little world. To them, every place in the outside world could be said to be an abyss of death.
The more they yearned and longed for it, the crueler their fate would be.
Yun Che breathed in deeply and then said gently, “Actually, my home isn’t in the God Realm. It is in a faraway place, in a distance lower realm… The first place I came to when I arrived in the God Realm was a white world of endless snow. The earth, seas and rivers were all covered in ice and snow that would never melt. Even the sky was so white that it seemed as though it was covered in a layer of snow… The halls in that place would be many tens of kilometers long, the biggest being a few hundred kilometers…”
Without mentioning specific names, Yun Che began to talk about the world he was born from, talk about the Snow Song Realm’s white colored world and its mystical Heavenly Netherfrost Lake, talk about the Flame God Realm’s boundless flaming purgatory… He even talked about the two frightening, cunning, ancient horned dragons in the sea of fire...
The quartet of young wood spirits listened as though they were in a trance and at times, cried out in surprise.
They only listened and then imagined it in their heads. They were fundamentally unable to truly know what it would look like, what kind of spectacle it would be. But even so, to them, who were eternally “caged” within their little world, this brought them unprecedented excitement.
“Several thousand kilometers… several tens of thousands of kilometers… a completely white world.” Fei Yan looked up with a blurred gaze, before absentmindedly saying, “I’m already this old yet I’ve never seen snow before.”
“Me too.” Qing Zhu nodded in agreement with a heart full of longing.
Yun Che smiled. Then, he suddenly flew up and a blue light flashed in his hands. A huge expanse of fluttering snow that resembled goose feathers fell from the sky, accompanied by a cool refreshing breeze.
Exhilarated cries overlapped as they all clasped their hands together. Bathing in the falling snow and sensing a coldness they had never felt before, they felt as though they had suddenly landed in a completely different world.
The snowfall was gentle at first but it quickly changed to become a snowstorm. Yun Che’s finger moved slightly and a dozen blossoming ice lotus flowers instantly fell amidst the flying snow. The smallest one could be clasped in one’s palm and the biggest one made the two wood spirit girls fall over each other in their desire to sit inside it, to personally feel the blossoming of the ice lotus.
Outside the flying snow, a faint golden colored flame ignited. It quickly condensed to become a huge, flaming Golden Crow silhouette, which then let out a sharp resonating long cry.
“What a pretty fire bird!” He Lin shouted.
“This is the Golden Crow, one of the most powerful fire divine beasts of the Primordial Era.”
Yun Che’s thoughts moved slightly and the image condensed by the blaze quickly changed, becoming one of the ancient horned dragons that lived inside the God Burying Inferno Prison.
“This is that flame horned dragon I mentioned to you guys earlier. Its entire body was covered in fire and its tail was longer than its entire body. Hm, it’s more or less like this.” Yun Che presented, then lamented, “I almost died beneath its claws back then.”
“It looks really scary. I can tell that it must be a really really bad profound beast, in a single glance.” Fei Yan’s cheeks puffed, seemingly to vent the dissatisfaction she felt when she heard that it had nearly killed Yun Che.
After the display of snow, ice and fire, Yun Che then showed them lightning and his profound handle. He played with them for a long while before he withdrew his hand, completely scattering all the wind, snow, lightning and fire along with it.
Everything seemed to have just been an illusion.
Beneath the excitement they had never before felt, the faces of the four wood spirit youths were all currently flushed. The eyes they looked at Yun Che with seemed to shimmer like bright stars—just a moment ago, they felt gratitude and curiosity toward Yun Che. What they felt now, however, was a sudden, intense, all encompassing worship.
“I really… I really want to go see the place Big Brother Benefactor talked about,” Qing Zhu dreamily said as he looked up.
“That day will definitely come,” Yun Che said.
“Big Brother Benefactor… oh! Can we…” Fei Yan’s eyes were earnest, yet her entire face was filled with nervousness. “Can you tell us your name?”
He Lin, Qing He and Qing Zhu also looked at him.
Yun Che smiled and answered without hesitation, “My name is Yun Che.”
“Yun Che…” they all said softly.
“Big Brother Yun Che!” Qing Zhu hollered excitedly.
“Y-y-you… big dummy! You stole my thunder again! I want to say it too… Big Brother Yun Che!” As Fei Yan called out, her eyes bent into thin crescents. Then, she tugged at the Qing He beside her. “Big Sister Qing He, you’re not talking much today. Hurry up and call him Big Brother Yun Che.”
Qing He took a small step forward and still had yet to lift her head. Both her hands nervously pinched at her colorful sash, as she timidly uttered, “Big Brother… Yun Che…”
“Qing He, what’s wrong?” Qing He’s strange actions began to worry Qing Zhu. “You… ah? Why is your face kind of red? Are you sick?”
“Ah! I got it!” Fei Yan shouted. “Big Sister Qing He must have fallen for Big Brother Yun Che!”
“N-no I haven’t!” The faint color of the red dawn instantly became a gorgeous sunset and immediately spread to her jade colored neck as her head drooped even lower. Then, she gently stamped her foot all of a sudden and turned to run like a startled butterfly… never daring to shoot Yun Che a single glance during the entire process.
“Wahaha! I guessed right!” Fei Yan laughed with satisfaction. Then, she her bright eyes looked directly at Yun Che. “Big Brother Yun Che, Qing He ran away due to embarrassment, you’d better take responsibility!”
“This…” Yun Che pressed his nose, troubled.
Wood spirits bore the purest of nature energy. As a result, the females tended to be gentle and beautiful, while the males extremely pretty. However, because of this, they would lack masculinity. To wood spirit girls who were accustomed to male wood spirits, the moment they got close or became curious, Yun Che’s manliness, along with his sharpness tempered by countless hardships, would produce an attractiveness that would most likely be fatal.
He Lin didn’t laugh. Ever since Yun Che gave his name, he had been staring at him in a daze, the corner of his mouth slowly biting down.
When Yun Che sensed his unusual condition, he heavily kneeled before Yun Che.
“Ah? Young patriarch!” Fei Yan and Qing Zhu exclaimed in great shock.
“He Lin, you?” Yun Che quickly stretched out a hand, intending to lift him back up.
Yet He Lin stubbornly persisted to kneel in place.He lifted a pair of slightly trembling eyes. “I… I don’t want to call you Big Brother Yun Che, I… I… I want to call you Master.”
Yun Che, “...”
“Master! Can you be my master? I want to be as strong as you… I… I’ll work hard, I’m willing to endure hardships. No matter how tough it gets, I’m willing to take them all in. Please accept me.”
He Lin wasn’t asking but pleading… pleading with an intense longing.
“He Lin.” Yun Che pressed a hand on his little shoulder. “You are a wood spirit and I am human. Even though we look alike, our powers are different, so I can’t be your master.”
“No! Master can teach me. We can also use the same way of utilizing profound energy as humans do. Father and mother personally told me this,” He Lin said with determination. “Because father and mother were really powerful, they were able to defeat many strong bad guys and protect tons of our clansmen. I want to be as powerful as Master, I want to be able to protect my clansmen like father and mother did. I… I’ll listen to Master’s every word, I’ll do anything Master wants. Please accept me.”
“...’ Yun Che crouched down, a softness in his gaze that he only showed in front of close relatives appeared in his eyes. “He Lin, one person’s power will eventually reach its limits. Even if you become ten times as strong as me, you would not be able to alter the wood spirit race’s fate. What you need to rely on is your entire clan working together to overcome this.”
“You are the wood spirit race’s young patriarch. But don’t forget, you are still a child, you don’t have to put such a heavy burden on your own shoulders. What you need to do right now is to stay under the protection of your clansmen and peacefully, safely grow up. Once you’ve grown up, that is when you use your mature wings to protect your own clansmen, alright?”
“I… I know…” Two streaks of tears slowly trickled down He Lin’s face. “I know that even if I become really strong, I wouldn’t be able to alter my entire clan’s fate. But… if I become strong, I would at least be able to leave this place one day to go search for my big sister and protect her… I promised my father and mother that I would definitely protect my big sister. But… But I couldn’t find her. I don’t know where she is, I don’t know whether she’s getting bullied by bad guys. I… I really miss her… I really want to find her. I really want to protect big sister, so that she will never get bullied by anyone… but… but…”
The hand which Yun Che used to press onto He Lin’s shoulder slightly tightened, yet he couldn’t say a single world in response.
When he was around He Lin’s age, because his profound veins were crippled, he received mockery and occasional cold remarks. However, he had Xiao Lie’s meticulous care and protection, had Xiao Lingxi’s close accompaniment and he was able to laugh and play around with Xia Yuanba. He was able to freely go wherever he wanted, do whatever he wanted and never knew what fleeing from death or terror was, let alone having to bear an entire clan’s heavy responsibility on his shoulders.
Compared to those of the same age, him having crippled profound veins could be said to be pitiful.
But compared to He Lin, it was no doubt that the him back then was living in paradise.