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Translated by: Hypersheep325
Edited by: Michyrr
Luoluo assuredly had no idea what the gift Chen Changsheng spoke of was, but this did not stop her mood improving a little—her teacher would especially give her a gift! This indicated that in Teacher's heart, she was more important than Tang Thirty-Six, Xuanyuan Po and Zhexiu added together! In Teacher's heart, there was no way that she was just a student…right?
Thinking of the Heavenly Tome Monoliths in the Garden of Zhou, Chen Changsheng remembered that very important matter and asked Luoluo what she had found from her inquiries. In the past few days, he had also asked the priests of the Li Palace to help him check, but there was no news from them. He could only place his final hopes upon her.
Luoluo lowered her head, indicating that she did not want to say it.
Chen Changsheng felt his lips were somewhat dry. With a hoarse voice, he asked, "There's no news from the Elf race?"
Luoluo raised her head, confronting his questioning and apprehensive gaze. Biting her lip, she mustered her courage and said, "The elves that remain on the continent all live scattered across the plains. It's very difficult to completely confirm, but there is one thing that can be confirmed. There is no girl of Teacher's description that left the Garden of Zhou."
Chen Changsheng gazed at the fish in the lake, for a long time saying nothing.
Luoluo was rather sad, but she still managed a smile on her petite face. "Teacher, don't panic. I'll have someone go check again."
Chen Changsheng did not hear her words. He mumbled to himself, "I clearly saw her fly into the mountains on top of the Great Peng. The Mountainside Whispering Wood wasn't far, even if she was heavily injured…"
And then, he fell silent.
She was not able to leave the Garden of Zhou.
She could not leave through the same method as he had.
She was probably still within the Garden of Zhou.
Perhaps she was still alive, but it was even more likely that she was already dead.
This was the end.
If life was like the moment when we first met, when she was quietly sleeping on the pile of reeds, how fine it was, because there would always be a time when she would awaken.
Chen Changsheng was heartbroken. This was the first time he had genuinely experienced this sort of feeling. Although there were a few occasions when he thought of the possibility that the girl was no more and felt this feeling, that was just grass under a stone, still not able to tear through the hard surface and reveal itself. Although when he went to the Tong Palace and walked before the Black Dragon, he had also felt this sort of feeling, that was also just a parting. It was completely different from now.
He was parting from this world. The world was parting from him.
It was probably this sort of difference.
And then he remembered, he had promised her that he would do something.
"In two days, I will go to the Divine General of the East's Estate to end the engagement."
Luoluo was rather surprised. Raising her head, she thought to herself, after Teacher entered the capital, he's already gone to the Divine General's estate to end the engagement twice, but failed both times. Last time, Xu Shiji declared that if he still wanted to end the engagement, he should do it in front of Xu Yourong…in a few days, Xu Yourong will return to the capital. Teacher, why are you in such a rush? Why not wait a little longer?
"I promised her…to end the engagement."
Chen Changsheng stared at the fish in the lake, his eyes unblinking. "Since I've confirmed she's no longer here, I even more have to do it. And I have to do it quickly, or else I'm afraid she'll think I was deceiving her."
Luoluo sat in the carriage, looking out the window at the walls of the academy, her face somewhat pale.
No one could understand just how much courage it had taken to deliver that news to Chen Changsheng.
Because she clearly understood that, given Chen Changsheng's temperament, the moment she gave him the news, there would be no more hope for herself.
As expected, Chen Changsheng quickly resolved to go to the Divine General of the East's Estate to end the engagement.
That fiancée of his had no more hope.
Let alone she who was just his student.
Outside the carriage, Jin Yulu seemed to have vaguely sensed something and sighed.
It was this gentle and pitying sigh that caused Luoluo to cry.
She drew down the curtain and sobbed in sadness. She thought to herself, none of you understand anything.
Those who had departed would always be more important in the hearts of others.
Those who had departed forever would possess an unimpeachable and eternal position in the hearts of others.
She understood this principle. At the age of five, after her beloved grandmother went to her eternal rest in the Red River, she understood.
She knew that she would never be able to defeat that girl who she had never even met, because that girl had already departed.
Or perhaps, only through parting could one really be remembered.
Luoluo raised her head, wiped the tears off her face, and raised the curtains once more. She gazed at the gradually receding trees of the Orthodox Academy.
She knew that the time had come for her to depart.
Teacher, I will definitely make you remember me.
She stubbornly thought.
Tang Thirty-Six noticed that Chen Changsheng's mood today was somewhat off. He asked, "Are you okay?"
Chen Changsheng took the wet clothes out of a basket and hung them up on the clothesline as he replied, "I'm fine."
He didn't want his friends to worry about him. Moreover, he always felt that the memories of that time in the Garden of Zhou were his and hers alone. Thus, he changed the subject, "Back then when His Highness Prince Chen Liu wanted to come to the Orthodox Academy, why didn't you agree?"
Tang Thirty-Six perked his eyebrow and teased, "Oh! I'm not even the Principal of the Orthodox Academy, do I have the right to disagree?"
Chen Changsheng carried the basket and walked into the small building. As he passed, he said, "You might not have said, but that face of yours was so unsightly that it was like…"
He was originally planning to say 'like someone died’, but what came out was different.
"…like something big had happened."
"With this handsome face of mine, even if I were to make a face at him, how could it possibly be ugly?"
Tang Thirty-Six took the washboard that he was carrying with one hand and followed him. "I just don't like that guy. It's not like you don't know."
This was something that Chen Changsheng had never understood. "Just why is that?"
"I just feel that guy's too hypocritical," Tang Thirty-Six answered.
Chen Changsheng replied, "Without solid evidence, don't criticize."
Tang Thirty-Six sneered, "You don't think that whether it's this guy's words or actions, he always gives off the feeling of a cleansing spring breeze?"
Chen Changsheng was thoroughly confused. Wasn't this praise? he thought to himself.
"He's a man, what reason is there to assault us all with the spring breeze?" Tang Thirty-Six disdainfully made his verdict: "He must have a plan, and a big one at that. It's better to keep him at a distance."
Chen Changsheng thought it over. These words were truly rather reasonable. However, in the present situation, the Imperial clan had been driven off into the various counties. Besides the Orthodoxy and Zhu Luo, there was no other powerful external aid. For Prince Chen Liu to deliberately forge a good relationship with the Orthodox Academy was also rather understandable.
As the two spoke, they entered the small building. After putting the things down, Chen Changsheng went to Zhexiu's room. Zhexiu's injuries were gradually improving. Although he still could not walk, he could move. In the past few days, they had moved him back to the small building. Chen Changsheng sat at the bedside, attentively reading Zhexiu's pulse. He then took out his needles and began to treat Zhexiu. Only after a very long time did the day's treatment conclude.
Beside him, Tang Thirty-Six looked at Zhexiu's still-pale face in concern and asked, "Just when is he going to fully recover?"
Chen Changsheng shook his head. "That's dependent on his own vitality."
Zhexiu opened his eyes and said without the slightest emotion, "You guys don't have to concern yourselves over this point."
At this moment, Xuanyuan Po came from the library with a thick stack of letters of challenge.
"This is just the first batch. I heard from Priest Lu that there's still a big pile at the Bureau of Ecclesiastic Education. It seems that the Tianhai clan head is truly very angry."
Tang Thirty-Six said, "At his age and with his status, why does he like to get angry like a little kid?"
The blue lobster of the Great Western Continent…in all of the capital, Clear Lake Restaurant was the only place where it could be eaten. Now that the Clear Lake Restaurant had closed for endless renovation, it was naturally much more difficult to eat. If one's beloved food were suddenly impossible to eat, anyone would get angry. Xuanyuan Po imagined what sort of mood he would be in if someone prevented him from eating roast lamb leg on the other side of the lake. He clearly understood and even sympathized with the Tianhai clan head.
After a moment of silence, Chen Changsheng said, "Just for a plate of lobster…"
With the Tianhai clan's position in the human world, the whirlwind invoked by the Tianhai clan head really was impossible for the Orthodox Academy to stand against. Starting from today, there would definitely be countless letters of challenge descending like snowflakes. Now matter how good the three youths of the Orthodox Academy were at fighting, even if they could win every battle, how could they last through so many matches? Even if they weren't beaten to death, they would probably be exhausted to death. Even if they weren't exhausted to death, they would really be disgusted to death.
As he looked at those letters of challenge, he felt a pain in his chest. Just as he had said yesterday on the great banyan tree, living like this every day was really not the life he wanted to live.
The most troublesome thing was that, amongst this pile of letters, there was one letter that was very heavy. Neither he nor Tang Thirty-Six could take it on.
"Bie Tianxin, once the most powerful expert of the Li Palace Academy. Initial level Star Condensation, but…it's not the initial level Star Condensation of Zhou Ziheng and Mu Laoban. In his year's Ivy Festival and Grand Examination, he only lost to Guan Bai. Many people even suspect that he could have already entered the middle level of Star Condensation, except for the fact that the technique passed down through his family is far too powerful and secretive. As a result, he's temporarily stopped at his current level."
"The technique passed down through his family? He's not a student of the Li Palace Academy?"
"If your family were even more powerful than the Li Palace Academy, if you were you, what would be your final decision?"
"Ah…whose son is he?"
"His father is called Bie Yanghong, his mother is called Wuqiong Bi."
"Ah…his family really is very powerful."
Chen Changsheng did not sigh and say that these two new names were very strange, because even someone as ignorant and ill-informed as him had heard these two names before.
These two names were the same as Zhu Luo and Guan Xingke, all signifying the storms of the world.
But this was the first he realized that these two Storms of the Eight Directions were originally husband and wife, and that they even had a son.
Chen Changsheng sighed, "Even if we could win, it's not good to win."
If they beat the young one, then presumably the father and mother would come calling.
"Can you not be so narcissistic as me?" Tang Thirty-Six chided. "Just where did you get the confidence that you can beat this opponent?"
Chen Changsheng really wanted to say, whether it was the wilderness outside Xunyang City or these battles in front of the Orthodox Academy's gate, just how many initial level Star Condensation experts have I defeated? And then he recalled that Tang Thirty-Six had said that this initial level Star Condensation was different from an ordinary initial level Star Condensation.
"That Bie Tianxin was unable to defeat Guan Bai back then doesn't mean that his strength was any less than Guan Bai's. You can basically treat the two as having equal strength." Tang Thirty-Six looked into his eyes and said, "You've seen Guan Bai. How much chance do you think you have?"
Chen Changsheng recalled that scholar he had seen on the side of the street and the sword intent he had sensed. After a moment of silence, he affirmed, "Not a single chance."
Tang Thirty-Six replied, "Then if you want to beat Bie Tianxin, there's also no chance."
On the bed, Zhexiu once more opened his eyes. "I once fought with him before."
The three youths all looked over, asking in shock, "Who won?"