Chapter 756 - Condemnation
“This stretch of mountain was conferred on Heavenly Sword Villa by the Blue Wind Royal Family a thousand years ago. Since then, it has been renamed as the Heavenly Sword Mountain Range. The summit of the tallest mountain is known as the Summit of Cloud Piercing Sword, and it is also the highest peak in Blue Wind Nation.”
From a bird’s eye view, Yun Che introduced the area in detail to Feng Xue’er. When he first arrived at Heavenly Sword Villa years ago, he was awed by the Heavenly Sword Mountain Range with its surging sword aura. Coupled with the Heavenly Sword Mountain Range’s reputation, a reverence was naturally born in his heart.
This time however, when he faced Heavenly Sword Villa once again, he felt mildly scornful. This feeling of scorn definitely did not emerge from him being strong and looking down on the weak. It was contempt birthed from his heart for all of Heavenly Sword Villa!
When he first arrived at Heavenly Sword Villa six years ago, it never crossed his mind that Heavenly Sword Villa of Blue Wind, in all its tremendous overshadowing power and magnificence, would land in such a sorry plight when faced with Blue Wind Nation’s difficulty and Frozen Cloud’s crisis.
“Big Brother Yun, I’d like to know, how do you plan to deal with Heavenly Sword Villa with your visit this time?” Feng Xue’er asked gently, her words imbued with worry, “Are you going to just to teach them a small lesson, or go… go…”
He had previously damaged Phoenix City into a complete mess. As for Heavenly Sword Villa… to the current Yun Che, even if he wished to demolish them, it was not going to cost him much effort.
Yun Che was slightly startled by Feng Xue’er’s question. He lifted his gaze and his vision was filled with the surrounding range of mountains around the villa. He said regretfully: “Perhaps I’m here solely to vent my anger. Although Heavenly Sword Villa was morally despicable because of their betrayal, they were able to preserve their Heavenly Sword Villa’s thousand year foundation. Besides, selfishness is human nature. Thinking from this angle, I have constantly attempted to absolve Heavenly Sword Villa during this period, but in the end… I still cannot forgive Heavenly Sword Villa. Since they chose to betray the trust placed in them, they naturally have to bear the consequences of that betrayal. Back then, both the Blue Wind Imperial Family and Heavenly Sword Villa pledged to survive or perish together. With this catastrophe that Blue Wind has suffered through, Heavenly Sword Villa has no right to escape unscathed after their betrayal!!”
"And... even if I were magnanimous enough to forgive Heavenly Sword Villa, Little Fairy’s matter… simply cannot be overlooked!"
Recalling the incident involving Chu Yuechan, Yun Che’s peaceful mindset abruptly emanated an aura of viciousness… with this nascent aura, he became irascible and uncontrollable. Ever since Zi Ji disseminated the “free” information of the mastermind behind Chu Yuechan’s incident, the formerly fading memory of the name “Xuanyuan Yufeng” was brutally nailed into his heart and soul with bitter vengeance.
“Big Brother Yun...” Feng Xue’er instantly sensed the change in Yun Che’s emotions. She turned her face and looked at him with bright and clear eyes. Whenever the name “Little Fairy” was mentioned, his breathing and aura became agitated. Now at Heavenly Sword Villa, the aura he suddenly emanated was frighteningly maniacal, his gaze turned terrifying.
During the past three months of constant day and night companionship, Feng Xue’er’s initial surprise and anxiety gradually changed to understanding… Towards Chu Yuechan, Yun Che held deep affections, worry, yearning, guilt... and fear, of not seeing her again. That was why whenever he mentioned her, or thought of her, he would fall into a state of agitation for a long period of time.
Grabbing Feng Xue’er’s hand, Yun Che hastened down towards Heavenly Sword Villa. At the same time, a deep, somber voice with a ruthless aura encompassed Heavenly Sword Villa, and even the entire Heavenly Sword Mountains Range.
“Xuanyuan Yufeng, come on out!!”
Yun Che’s profound strength was robust and powerful; a frisson of shock ran through the dignified sword aura surrounding Heavenly Sword Villa purely from his roar. The several thousand swords dancing in the Sword Management Terrace became chaotic. All at once, the originally tranquil and solemn Heavenly Sword Villa was thrown into turmoil. Almost all disciples, pavilion masters, sword attendants and elders rushed out in rage, as if facing their nemesis.
After all, no one has ever dared to provoke Heavenly Sword Villa since their establishment a thousand years ago.
“Heavenly Sword Villa seems to have two incredible guests today.” Jasmine said suddenly.
“Incredible… guests?” Yun Che frowned.
“Two level six Monarchs, one mid-stage, and one late-stage. Seems like you won’t be getting your way today.” Jasmine said lightly.
“Level six Monarchs?” Yun Che startled slightly but did not express any worry and sneered instead, “Don’t tell me they’re from Mighty Heavenly Sword Region? Heh, it looks like I’ve come at the wrong time. Heavenly Sword Villa is really clinging on to whoever is backing them for dear life.”
Yun Che suddenly recalled a conversation he had with Ling Jie three years ago in Phoenix City, when he met the latter unexpectedly after the Profound Sky Seven Nation Ranking Tournament…
“Back in the day, mother chose father over grandfather, causing grandfather to be furious. A few days back, father and mother brought big brother and I to Mighty Heavenly Sword Region to meet grandfather. Mother and grandfather finally resolved their differences. Eh… grandfather even seemed to like me a lot, and even said that he would personally teach me the complete Heaven’s Might Absolute Sword, hehe…”
“...” Yun Che’s expression subtly turned complicated.
Yun Che did not conceal himself, but blatantly showed up above Heavenly Sword Villa, coldly staring down.
There were many shadows scurrying around in Heavenly Sword Villa. Directly below Yun Che, a silhouette accompanied by a cold, dense sword aura shot upwards and appeared in front of him in a split second… It was Ling Yuefeng. At the same time, a number of Heavenly Sword pavilion masters and elders, wielding profound strength in the Earth Profound Realm and above followed hot on his heels, quickly falling into their battle formation and surrounding Yun Che and Feng Xue’er.
“Yun Che, it’s really you.” Ling Yuefeng’s expression became especially complex when he saw Yun Che, and he said with a mild smile, “You came later than I expected.”
Indeed, he had predicted that this day would come.
At first, in order to protect the thousand years of foundation of Heavenly Sword Villa from the chaos brought by Divine Phoenix, they chose to violate the promise made by their ancestors, committing a betrayal of trust that breached morality. The villa was sealed, and the pleas for assistance sent by the Blue Wind Imperial Family and Frozen Cloud Immortal Palace were ignored. At that time, it had never occurred to them that the Blue Wind Imperial Family would survive, much less this complete reversal of what was supposed to be an expected outcome.
And the reason for this variance, was Yun Che’s return.
Yun Che was infamous for seeking revenge for any grievances suffered. The tragic extermination of the Burning Heaven Clan that year was an event nobody dared to let slip from their memory. After Yun Che survived, the first thing he did upon his return was to serve a revenge many times more devastating than the extermination of the Burning Heaven Clan… towards the Divine Phoenix Sect which had the Profound Sky Seven Nations under their thumb. He made them suffer a crushing defeat, and threw them into a state of chaos and unrest. Eventually, they were forced to withdraw and even offered an apology and an enormous compensation to Blue Wind Nation… Moreover, it was rumored that these were the consequences after Empress Cang Yue pardoned them. Otherwise, the Divine Phoenix Sect might have had to pay a more tragic price.
With Yun Che’s character, it would have been impossible for him to forget Heavenly Sword Villa’s “sin of apathy” after the war. After all, Heavenly Sword Villa was different from the other profound cultivating forces… At the same time, there were rumors that he saved Frozen Cloud Immortal Palace from an imminent demise. He assumed the new appointment as the Palace Master, as both the former Palace Mistress Gong Yuxian and the Grand Palace Mistress Feng Qianhui had perished…
At Yun Che’s hands, the Divine Phoenix Sect was left devastated beyond hope; Heavenly Sword Villa would not even stand a chance.
The current Yun Che was worlds apart from himself of three years ago.
Ling Yuefeng’s gaze roamed towards Yun Che’s side, and he startled slightly. The young girl next to Yun Che wore a snowy white robe, her waist wrapped with thin jade silk, signifying an outfit of the Frozen Cloud Immortal Palace. Her face was obscured by a muslin, and one could only vaguely see a pair of beautiful eyes.
Although her face could not be seen, her entire body exuded an ethereal and fairy-esque aura. Merely looking at her would cause one to feel ashamed and inferior, and would have qualms about being disrespectful…
This feeling, it was exactly the same back when he first met Chu Yuechan… That particular scene, that moment his heart palpitated wildly, he would never forget it even on his deathbed.
“Ah…” Yue Che let out an ear-piercing sneer, which snapped him out of his fleeting absent-mindedness, “Isn’t this the awe-inspiring Villa Master Ling Yuefeng of the supposed number one sect in Blue Wind Nation, the illustrious Heavenly Sword Villa? To have impulsively dropped by for a visit without prior notice and troubled renowned Villa Master Ling to personally greet me, this junior is intimidated beyond his wits.”
As long as one was not deaf, one would be able to hear the ice in Yun Che’s tone and his derisive sarcasm. The closest Heavenly Sword Elder exclaimed furiously, “Yun Che, don’t forget your status! In our Heavenly Sword Villa, you have no place to behave audaciously!!”
“Step down!” Ling Yuefeng’s chest heaved, as he uttered heavily.
“Villa Master…” the surrounding Heavenly Sword elders and pavilion masters who stood by gravely were shocked and stared at Ling Yuefeng, bewildered and nonplussed.
“Step down, all of you!” Ling Yuefeng’s tone hardened, “Without my order, no one is allowed to come any closer!”
Under Ling Yuefeng’s strict order, all Heavenly Sword elders and pavilion masters retreated gradually while staring at Yun Che with unrestrained alarm, until everyone was a distance away. They were well aware that if Yun Che decided to strike, with his caliber of strength that left the Divine Phoenix Sect in chaos, even if their strength were to be multiplied by ten, it would be moot.
Once everyone had retreated, Ling Yuefeng faced Yun Che and inhaled deeply. The last time he met Yun Che was five or six years ago, and at that time, Yun Che was merely a junior who caught his attention slightly. Today, although the current Yun Che in front of him has not changed much in terms of appearance, with the exception of growing slightly taller. However, when facing him, there was a distinct pressure not unlike facing a mountain.
He held exceptionally complicated feelings towards Yun Che… It could perhaps be understood as a deep envy and jealousy, stemming from his unrequited love for his beloved Chu Yuechan who did not even once spare him a glance, yet towards this twenty something year old boy…
At the same time, there was a feeling of unavoidable resentment, although he was clear that he was not in any position to do so.
“Yun Che.” Ling Yuefeng said with a calm tone, “I have not left the villa these past two months, since I was awaiting your visit, or even someone from the Blue Wind Imperial Household. We sealed the villa for the past few years as we were powerless to help, but we still feel ashamed. I have nothing further to say since you are here to condemn us.”
Yun Che raised his eyebrow and was just about to speak, when an elderly, dignified voice spoke from a distance, “The decision to seal the villa was made by me. The decision to withhold assistance to Frozen Cloud Immortal Palace was also made by me.”
As soon as the voice was heard, an elder dressed in an ash-colored gown arrived beside Ling Yuefeng. He glanced at Yun Che and slowly closed his eyes, “Since you are here today… then I will naturally provide an explanation.”
“Father, these are clearly the decisions I made… you didn’t have anything to do with them!” Ling Tianni’s appearance and his words caused Ling Yuefeng to momentarily lose his train of thought, and he hurriedly added, “Yun Che, my father said all that to shield me. As the current villa master of Heavenly Sword Villa, all of the decisions were made by me and have nothing to do with my father. If you have any grievances, you should just direct them at me!”
“Haha, how wonderful that father and son are mutually protecting each other, simply touching enough to move the world!” Yun Che sneered and directed his piercingly sharp glare at Ling Tianni, “Ling Tianni, you and I have no relations, yet you traveled thousands of miles to the Blue Wind Imperial City to have me killed under the pretext of ridding evil back then, under the guise of justice and under the pretense of purging danger from Blue Wind! Although I was badly injured and almost died by your hands, I still maintained a modicum of respect towards you in my heart because I believed your intention towards me arose from the misunderstanding that I was a malevolent and bloodthirsty person. I thought you were an upright and principled person who loathed evil, a trustworthy and honest man!”
“Yet when the country was facing a real crisis, even if no vow was made with the Blue Wind Profound Palace’s ancestor, Heavenly Sword Villa should have stepped up as the core strength. In the end, under the leadership of Ling Tianni, Heavenly Sword Villa has become Blue Wind Nation’s biggest cowards!” Yun Che criticized unreservedly, “When Blue Wind Nation was enveloped in the flames of war and rivers of blood were shed, Heavenly Sword Villa has suffered not even a single loss in the past three years. It moved not a single muscle, and not even a shadow was seen. Recalling how you used to proudly proclaim those ostentatiously dignified words makes me nauseous!”
“...Yun Che!” Ling Yuefeng’s face darkened slightly, “Heavenly Sword Villa has acknowledged this matter and is accordingly ashamed! But this decision was made considering our circumstantial difficulties. If you want to exact revenge, I, Ling Yuefeng will be accountable… desist humiliating my father!”
“That’s enough, Yuefeng. What he said was right, there is no need to absolve me.” Ling Tianni raised his hand and said weakly. With the passing of just a few years, his appearance had aged rapidly. Perhaps for the past few years years, he had been carrying a heavy guilt in his heart. “Yun Che, I’ve said that I will naturally give you and the Blue Wind Imperial Family an explanation regarding this matter.”
“An explanation?” Yun Che turned and said coldly, “Hah, I have not said I needed any explanation from you!”
“Originally, I did intend to level Heavenly Sword Villa.” Yun Che’s frosty tone and words had anyone listening shudder in fear, “Don’t assume that I’m unable to deliver just because you have the backing of Mighty Heavenly Sword Region! Three months ago, even the Divine Phoenix Sect’s Phoenix City was almost completely razed to the ground by my hand. For me to destroy just Heavenly Sword Villa without even blinking is as easy as pie!”
Ling Tianni’s and Ling Yuefeng’s breathing simultaneously became rougher and heavier. If those words were uttered by anyone else, it could have been brushed off as a joke, but because it came from Yun Che, it sent a chill down their spines and they could barely crack a smile.
“However, before I left the Blue Wind Imperial City today, my empress wife stopped me and said this: Heavenly Sword Villa may have disregarded the ancestor’s vow, but the Blue Wind Imperial Family will not do likewise! The founders of Blue Wind and Heavenly Sword pledged to support each other as pillars of power and strength in Blue Wind, to survive and perish together as brothers, and all descendants were mandated to maintain close ties with Heavenly Sword Villa! Today, even if Heavenly Sword Villa is indifferent and callous, as descendants of the Blue Wind Ancestor, we will not disobey the ancestor’s instructions and destroy the legacy of the Heavenly Sword Ancestor.”
“For three years, she was saddled with the pain from the passing of her father and her husband. She shouldered the burden of Blue Wind Nation’s crisis and protected the final dignity of Blue Wind Nation and the royal family. However, she abandoned her own dignity and sought help from you nine times! But what did she gain from this…?” Yun Che inhaled violently, his voice becoming more frigid and bitter, “Therefore, she should be the one who carries the most hatred for you in this world, and is the most qualified person to seek vengeance. But it is also her, her who had wanted me to forgive you. At the very least, to not eliminate Heavenly Sword Villa… but pretend Heavenly Sword Villa did not exist!”
With those words from Yun Che, Ling Tianni and Ling Yuefeng’s gazes wavered… As they recalled Empress Cang Yue’s nine letters of plea written with her blood and tears, a sourness welled up in their hearts, and their expressions turned markedly contrite.