Jing Jiu handed the Green Sky Mirror to Gu Qing and said, "Bring this to the Three-Thousand Nunnery outside Dayuan City."
The Green Girl hadn't come out since Jing Jiu locked the Snow Girl in the Sword Jail by deceiving her.
Jing Jiu thought that the Green Girl was probably not keen on chitchatting with Gu Qing either.
This disciple of his was sometimes even more boring than himself.
Gu Qing felt it rather heavy after he took the Green Sky Mirror from Jing Jiu.
He had a similar feeling back when he took the sword manual of the Inherited Heaven Sword from Jing Jiu.
And he also felt the heavy burden on his shoulders back when it was arranged by Jing Jiu for him to become the teacher of the Prince Jing Yao.
This sort of feeling was most evident back when Jing Jiu told him to be prepared to become the sect master of Green Mountain.
This was nothing but a magic treasure of the heavenly state, Gu Qing screamed in his mind. Why do you trust me so much, Master? Or is this but another test for this disciple?
Jing Jiu didn't pay attention to what was on Gu Qing's mind. "I'll get going," he said to the group.
Though these were common words for departure, these people on Shenmo Peak were fully aware that this was a solemn farewell as far as Jing Jiu was concerned, since they all knew him very well.
Zhao Layue walked to his front and hugged him for a while before letting it go.
Ping Yongjia wondered if this was the common courtesy on Shenmo Peak and if he should hug Jing Jiu as well.
As he thought about it, he reflexively opened his arms, though his extending arms looked a bit rigid.
He came to his senses only when Yuan Qü smacked the back of his head, and he hastily bowed all the way to the ground along with two of his big brothers.
"I'll use the sword for a while," Jing Jiu said to Gu Qing.
It seemed that he was a bit hesitant when making this decision.
Gu Qing was startled, wondering why Jing Jiu asked him for permission and why Jing Jiu showed such a hesitant emotion.
This isn't like you; what on earth has happened?
Shenmo Peak appeared more desolate as the Sword of the Universe came out.
Jing Jiu flew up while sitting on the sword, which then turned into a flash of chilly light, heading toward the high sky.
The Great Formation of Green Mountain opened a passage for him. As the waves formed in the ocean of clouds, the sword light disappeared into the distance.
Zhao Layue led Gu Qing and Yuan Qü back into the manor cave, but Ping Yongjia was still standing at the cliff's edge and waving his hand to the sky, with a reluctant and anxious countenance. He had come to Shenmo Peak for a whole year now, but he had seen his Master only twice and exchanged no more than five sentences. If this situation went on, his Master might have forgotten having such a disciple.
"We might all go out; so get ready for it," Zhao Layue told Yuan Qü.
Gu Qing was to go back to Zhaoge City, so he wouldn't get involved in this matter. As a result, Yuan Qü would be the one taking care of such affairs.
Yuan Qü felt nervous, as he asked, "When will we leave?"
Zhao Layue thought it depended on when Jing Jiu would find that person.
Besides Zhao Layue, nobody else knew why Jing Jiu had left Green Mountain alone and where he was headed.
The Sword of the Universe, like what he had done a few times before, didn't fly to a place thousands of miles away, but landed on the outskirts of Cloudy Town.
His Big Brother and Zhao Layue had some influence on him in this aspect.
The restaurant serving hotpot there was like a mid-way station for the people of Shenmo Peak, or a gathering place.
As Jing Jiu pushed open its door, he felt displeased instantly.
The smell in the private room was terrible since it was filled with the stench of alcohol and burned hotpot.
He took off the conical hat, condensed a handful of water and threw it at the hotpot.
With a sizzling sound, the temperature of the burned hotpot dropped a bit, but the smell actually grew stronger.
Jing Jiu was baffled for a moment; then he summoned the sword fire that he had tempered for six years in the snowland and used it to decimate the hotpot and the ingredients in it into a puff of green smoke.
The window was pushed open; soon the wind and a cacophony of humans outside strayed into the room and diluted the smell.
Nan Wang was drunk, and got worse when being assailed by the wind. She didn't recognize who Jing Jiu was, as she exclaimed in a flirtatious tone, "I still want to drink more wine. Why did you make the hotpot disappear? Bring it back, quickly!"
The alcohol jars were everywhere in the private room, lying on the floor in various positions. There were fifteen jars in total when Jing Jiu counted them.
Nan Wang didn't employ her Zhenyuan to dissolve the effect of alcohol, but she still could drink so much. She could be considered one of the heaviest drinkers in the world, yet she had drunk a little too much that day.
Though his countenance was the same, Jing Jiu had actually quivered a few times in his mind.
What he feared most about Nan Wang was when she became flirtatious after getting drunk; he also feared her when she sang the love songs and she stared at him wide-eyed and wordlessly, while the last thing he feared was her throwing up all over him.
If he didn't need Nan Wang to help him find a certain person, he would never agree to Liu Ci's suggestion of traveling with her.
"It's time to go," he said.
Nan Wang glanced at him and probably remembered who he was. "Why do we have to go? I've just started drinking," she mumbled in a drunken manner.
Feeling helpless, Jing Jiu grabbed a handful of water again. This time he added some chilly intent to the water, turning it into a mixture of water and ice. Then he threw it onto her face.
Nan Wang let out an astounded cry.
Her body got wet; the figure of her body became even more curved.
Her face was wet as well, making her eyes and brows look more attractive.
As the effect of alcohol abated, the expression in her eyes revealed a dreadful intent.
Jing Jiu handed a handkerchief to her silently.
Nan Wang took it silently and wiped herself off slowly and silently. In the end, she took out a few broken pieces of ice from the half opened collar of hers.
Then she raised her head slowly. "Do you have a death wish?" she demanded while looking at Jing Jiu expressionlessly.
Upon hearing this mantra of Green Mountain, Jing Jiu fell silent.
He was well aware that Nan Wang had a bad temper. If it were in another occasion, he wouldn't have done so. Instead, he would stay away from her as far as possible, waiting for her to come out of the drunkenness.
Yet, the Green Mountain's strike against the West Ocean could be launched only after they found Nan Qü; time was really tight.
Jing Jiu chose not to give a response. Now that he couldn't beat her, there was no point in him inviting pain from her.
Nan Wang didn't think he was obedient even though he remained silent. She got up and came to his side, and she reached out her hand in an attempt to grab his chin.
It was then that a white figure appeared as quickly as a flash of lightning, knocking away her hand.
Nan Wang looked at Jing Jiu's sleeve with a cold expression in her eyes.
She saw clearly that it was a cat's paw.
A moment later, the white cat crawled out from Jing Jiu's sleeve and climbed onto his shoulder along his arm. As he was about to keep on climbing to his head like he had done before, he suddenly realized that there was someone else present, and that doing so would make Jing Jiu lose face. As such, he chose to squat on his shoulder.
"It turns out that you have a backer; that is why you are brave enough to treat me this way," she said while staring into Jing Jiu's eyes.
Then, she turned to the white cat and asked expressionlessly, "Why doesn't Master White Ghost stay on the mountain to enjoy your life instead of come here?"
The white cat turned his head away, paying no heed to her.
Judging from the way she called him, she was very angry; otherwise, she would have called him "Ada".
Nan Wang was in the upper state of Broken Sea, so she couldn't beat him. But women were usually quite troublesome, and more trouble would ensue if they were beaten.
Nan Wang had been the most troublesome woman on Green Mountain. She had always been audacious because the masters and big brothers all spoiled her. She dared pull the cat's whiskers when she was still a young girl, and she chased him all over the mountain when she grew older. Worst of all, she was never willing to hold him in her bosom even though she had a nice and comfortable one. Instead, she chose to grab his neck, which was not comfortable in the least.
In comparison, he preferred Zhao Layue.
The white cat started missing that warm bosom already after he had just left Shenmo Peak.
Soon, he remembered that Little Layue hadn't held him for a long time; he couldn't help but feel resentful.
Jing Jiu explained, "Master White Ghost is good at smelling things."
The white cat felt it odd, wondering why both of them called him by his nickname today.
The reason Jing Jiu didn't call him Ada was different from Nan Wang's reason. He was not angry; he just didn't want Nan Wang to figure out something from the way he addressed the white cat.
The horse-drawn carriage of the Gu Clan had been waiting outside the restaurant.
Many years had passed, and the carriage had been replaced again. The design of it was more thoughtful and remarkable and the workmanship was as perfect as ever.
The benches facing each other on opposite sides were replaced by a chair and a bed. It was evident that the Gu Clan thought the person traveling with Jing Jiu was Zhao Layue.
Nan Wang supported her chin with her hand while looking at the spring scenery outside the window, lost in thought.
Nan Wang had a small and delicate body similar to those young women of the southern barbaric tribes, so her legs were not very long. Still, she occupied most of the bed when she laid on it.
Without a second thought, Jing Jiu sat down on the floor and started meditating with his eyes closed.
The white cat couldn't restrain himself at last and climbed to his head stealthily; then he exhaled comfortably and narrowed his eyes.
Hearing the cat's breathing, Nan Wang turned around and witnessed the scene; she couldn't help but smile amicably, making her look quite attractive.
The horse-drawn carriage headed to the west after entering Nanhezhou. It sometimes traveled on the official roads and sometimes on the mountain roads, stopping occasionally. But most of time it kept on moving ahead.
Whenever the carriage stopped, the sword lights would illuminate the wild fields and mountains or the farewell pavilions, bringing them the latest news.
Nan Wang and Jing Jiu left the carriage nearby the Zhuang River, and began traveling on foot. Occasionally, they opted to ride the swords when the cliffs were too high and the rivers were too wide.
The latest news kept on coming along with the sword lights.
Soon it was the middle of summer. A small boat was drifting on the surface of a lake in Daozhou City. Nan Wang sat at the bow of the boat, looking a bit distressed, and probably as such, she was dumping wine into her mouth.
Sitting across from her, Jing Jiu rubbed the cat's head gently with his right hand, wondering when this ordeal would be over.
The sword lights and news seemed to come by easily, when it was in fact a remarkable feat.
Since their departure, at least seven thousand messages of the latest happenings had been sent to them at the fastest speed.
This feat needed the full cooperation of the Curtain Rollers, and many Cultivation practitioners in the Undefeated State and above sending the messages without alerting the West Ocean Sword Sect. Apart from the Center Sect and the imperial court, the Green Mountain Sect was the only one that could achieve such a feat in all of Chaotian.
The Green Mountain Sect had displayed their profound background, and employed a great deal of resources and disciples; however…Nan Wang and Jing Jiu still had no idea where that person was.
Nan Wang was fully aware of her mission, and was under a tremendous pressure. She tried to lessen her distress with alcohol, but such a feeling would only get worse. Seeing Jing Jiu's face illuminated by the light reflected off the lake water, she suddenly found an effective way to lessen the pressure, saying to Jing Jiu, "Come on. Show me a smile."
Jing Jiu knew that she was drunk, paying her no heed.
This wine was provided by the Precious-Tree House a few days ago, called "Osmanthus Wine". Though it had a mild name, it was actually one of the strongest wines in the world. It was inevitable that she would get drunk since she drank it like water.
Gu Qing had told Zhao Layue that the boss of the Precious-Tree House wished to have a magic pill; he was present at the time, and heard of it.
Now, the magic pill was evidently gone.
Seeing him pay no attention to her, Nan Wang staggered over from the head of the boat while heaving the alcohol jar, it seemed that she might fall into the lake at any moment, but she didn't.
As she came before Jing Jiu, she said while looming over him, "You're such an arrogant fellow. Since you are unwilling to smile for me, dance for me then."
Nan Wang was the youngest sister of the Shangde Peak branch; she had been favored by everyone since her youth. Even the Immortal Jing Yang couldn't do anything about her. As such, she had developed a spoiled and carefree temperament. After having left Green Mountain, without the supervision of Yuan Qijing and other masters of the older generation, she became more outrageous.
Jing Jiu didn't give a response. He picked up the white cat and was about to throw him at her.
The white cat wondered how long his neck would suffer at the hands this young woman of the southern barbaric tribe; it was truly unfair.
It was then that a horse-drawn carriage suddenly came out from the forest by the lake, with a begonia flower carved on the top of the carriage.
A doctor rushed out from the carriage full of sweat on his forehead before it halted completely, yelling, "We've found him!"
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