R:DSAT Chapter 158: Long Xuan Visits a Patient

    Imperial Physician Wei surmised that Luo Wei’s coma this time was more serious than the one he fell into when he was rescued from Ku Liu’s hands. Imperial Physician Wei’s medical skills were second to none among famous doctors. One shake of his head and one “not good” from him engendered an ominous premonition in everyone’s hearts. 

    After Luo Wei did not awaken for five days, Emperor Xing Wu brought the empress and the crown prince to the Senior Official’s residence to see him. 

    Luo Zhi Yi only glanced at Luo Wei once, and then wept bitterly. Luo Wei lay on the bed covered with a few thick quilts. If not for him occasionally talking in his sleep, he would truly look just like a corpse. Luo Zhi Yi became the consort of Emperor Xing Wu–at that time still Prince Wu–at thirteen years old. From then on, she had not returned to the Luo residence. She never thought that after so many years, she would come back to see her little nephew one last time. 

    Luo Zhi Qiu saw that Emperor Xing Wu’s expression was also bleak, so he had Fu Hua support Luo Zhi Yi out into the main hall to rest. He accompanied the crown prince in retreating to the outer room, allowing Emperor Xing Wu alone to keep Luo Wei company at his sickbed. 

    “Wei Er?” Emperor Xing Wu leaned over as he sat on the bed, softly calling Luo Wei a few times. 

    Luo Wei was completely unresponsive, his complexion already a consistent wan, bloodless color that even seemed gray. According to Imperial Physician Wei, this was the appearance of one approaching death.

    “What on earth happened to you?” Emperor Xing Wu said to Luo Wei, “I already don’t blame you anymore, and haven’t punished your second brother again. Why would you lose control of your mood? Is it I who frightened you? Wei Er, as long as you recover this time, I will promise you that in the future I will never get angry in front of you again. I am the emperor, and my <a  TITLE=”(T/N: lit. = I have a golden mouth and words of jade. Idiom)”> utterances carry great weight</A>. Wei Er just don’t scare me like this, don’t scare your Emperor Father.” 

    After uttering the words “Emperor Father,” Emperor  Xing Wu shut his eyes and did not let the tears drip past the rims of his eyes. He had said he wanted to protect this child, but now Luo Wei had become like this. He, this emperor, was truly useless. He could not protect the woman he loved, and he likewise could not protect their son. After a hundred years, how would he face Luo Zhi Jin?

    Long Yu and Luo Zhi Qiu sat in the outer room. Since Luo Wei had become like this, Long Yu wanted to speak comforting words to Luo Zhi Qiu but these words would not break past his lips. Should he say that the heavens helped the worthy, and that misfortunes became blessings? These kinds of words were worth telling only if there was someone who believed them. Or should he say to Luo Zhi Qiu that Luo Wei would definitely be fine? Long Yu did not have the capability.

    “Your Highness, have tea.” Luo Zhi Qiu forced vitality to his motions as he offered tea.

    “Uncle, Xiao Wei?”

    “Submit to the will of the heavens ba,” Luo Zhi Qiu replied. He had already written a letter. He had ordered someone to depart on this starry night to send it to Yun Guan, so that Luo Ze would return home. If Luo Wei was truly in a bad state, at the very least the whole family must be present.

    Emperor Xing Wu could not stay in the Senior Official’s residence for long, and the empress and crown prince followed him. In the eyes of others, the pampering and favor bestowed upon this sick patient seemed to have reached its end.

    Long Yu did not want to go back to the palace with the emperor and empress. “This humble son wants to stay a while longer.”

    Emperor Xing Wu agreed. The fact that Long Yu could care for Luo Wei allowed him the slightest bit of gratification.

    After everyone in the residence respectfully sent off the emperor and empress, Luo Zhi Qiu again accompanied Long Yu to return to Luo Wei’s bedroom.

    “Uncle,” Long Yu stood in front of Luo Wei’s bed and said to Luo Zhi Qiu, “I want to be with Xiao Wei alone for a while.”

    Emperor Xing Wu wanting to keep Luo Wei company alone was a father’s natural instinct, and Luo Zhi Qiu could understand. But why would Long Yu wish to? Though puzzled at heart, Luo Zhi Qiu would not touch Long Yu’s <a TITLE=”(T/N: the Chinese meaning of face. Respectability, etc.)”> face</A> so he retreated to the outer room.

    Long Yu saw that only he and an unconscious Luo Wei remained in the room. He walked to the front of the moon window and gently opened it halfway. Sticking out his head, he whispered to the person standing under a laurel tree, “come in.”

    Long Xuan entered through the window. When his feet hit the ground, he whispered to Long Yu, “Big brother, thank you.”

    “His condition is not good. Go to see him, but don’t make noise.” Long Yu shook his head at Long Xuan, whose expression was serious. “I will wait for you outside the window.” Long Yu finished speaking and climbed out the window.

    Long Xuan closed the window. Last time he saw Luo Wei close it, so he also knew how to.  

    Long Yu stood outside the window, and when the cold wind blew, he felt chilled. Long Xuan had come running to him, almost begging for his help to see Luo Wei. Long Yu did not know what relationship Long Xuan and Luo Wei really had. He had personally heard Luo Wei say that he liked Long Xuan, and had also seen how Long Xuan would embarrass Luo Wei. Why did these two people become like fire and water after Luo Wei fell injured? Did Long Xuan do something excessive to make him and Luo Wei fall out with each other? Luo Wei ignored Long Xuan, but Long Xuan seemed to stick to Luo Wei, and Long Yu did not know what these two were thinking. Long Yu walked to the laurel tree. He would always be willing to help his brothers, but he did not know how many among his brothers would accept his care. 

    Long Xuan sat beside Luo Wei. “You’ll just keep sleeping like this?” he asked Luo Wei in a low voice.

    Luo Wei only quietly slept.

    “You!” Long Xuan suddenly stalked over as if possessed, and whispered into Luo Wei’s ear, “Didn’t you say you would fight with me till the last gasp? You’ll just leave like this? Those four foolish things, I’ll handle them so you won’t feel wronged, this isn’t enough?”  

    Luo Wei’s face was ice-cold. His eyebrows were still tightly furrowed as he slept. 

    “When I don’t allow you to die, you can’t die!” Long Xuan’s hand grabbed Luo Wei’s neck and he whispered to Luo Wei, “I want you to watch me become a monarch overlooking these lands under heaven. I want you to see with your own eyes how good an emperor I am! As long as you live, and act as the former Luo Wei, I will guarantee that your Luo clan will have no superiors! Do you hear me?!” Long Xuan hoped that he could see Luo Wei open his two eyes at this point, but Luo Wei had not even a trace of a reaction. Even his furrowed brow did not change. 

    The grip of Long Xuan’s hand tightened slightly. 

    Luo Wei’s mouth opened a bit.

    Long Xuan’s hand did not loosen. 

    Luo Wei’s face gradually reddened, and his mouth opened wider.

    “Damn you!” Long Xuan’s hand slackened, “Waiting for you to die of sickness like this, I would rather personally kill you, that way even as a ghost you wouldn’t forget me!” Long Xuan kissed Luo Wei; he kissed every inch of that beautiful face, “just because I threw away half of that mandarin duck belt buckle, you changed? Or is it that you’ve always been acting, and have simply never put me in your heart? Is it worth it to do this for Long Yu’s sake? Long Yu is better than me, I admit, but you have always been at my side!” Long Xuan’s tongue pried open Luo Wei’s mouth, which had already slightly opened. Between Luo Wei’s lips and teeth, the taste of medicine suffused. His entire mouth was bitter and astringent, but it was as if Long Xuan tasted sweet nectar. This person could not die. Before he allowed him to die, he could not die. “If you won’t speak, I’ll take it as you agreeing with me,” Long Xuan said to Luo Wei.  

    Standing under the laurel tree, Long Yu saw Long Xuan opening the window again. He quietly walked below the window. 

    The two brothers exchanged positions, and as they did so Long Yu heard Long Xuan tell him, “I’ll go back to the palace first.”

    “This is the prime minister’s residence, and there are many guards. Be careful,” Long Yu warned.

    “They can’t discover me.” Long Xuan was at least confident in this. “Big brother, thank you,” he said to Long Xuan. In the next instant, in a few steps, his figure had gone far away. 

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R:DSAT Chapter 157: A-Chou’s Death

    A-Chou took the criminal slave to the gathering place of the beggars in the red-light district. The criminal slave had grown up in the capital, but had never known of the existence of this Xiangfen (T/N: Xiangfen means cosmetic powder) Bridge within the red-light district. People actually lived underneath the four caverns formed by arches in the bridge. 

    After A-Chou went to a cavern within the Xiangfen Bridge, he began to get sick. He took herbal medicine but it was no use. The liquid that flowed from his open sores turned from yellow to brown.

    The criminal slave finally became anxious. This person who hadn’t spoken a word in some years opened his mouth at this time to say, “You have to see a doctor.” The beggars around them didn’t understand his words, so he had to repeat himself word by word a few times. 

    The accent in the criminal slave’s speech was already abnormal, and none of the beggars could understand. But A-Chou understood. He pointed at himself and then waved his hand at the criminal slave. 

    “A-Chou ah.” An old beggar saw A-Chou’s state and didn’t want the criminal slave to worry, so he said, “You want to return to Xuanzhou. If you’re like this, will you be able to go back alive?” (T/N: Xuanzhou in China can point to multiple places, as the name was assigned to different places throughout history. It could point to Xuanzhou district in Xuancheng City, Anhui). 

    The criminal slave kowtowed to the old beggar. (T/N: prostrated on the ground and pressed his forehead against it). 

    “With A-Chou like this, even a Daoist immortal would have difficulty curing him. Let’s not speak of us having no money, even if we had the money to call a doctor, there isn’t one who can cure him,” the old beggar said to the criminal slave.

    The beggars all sympathized but could not help. These people who begged for scraps on the streets of the red-light district all knew of this criminal slave; he was someone who even domesticated animals could come to. A-Chou was just finding trouble for himself by bringing this kind of a person along. But now as A-Chou appeared close to dying, this criminal slave seemed to be regarding A-Chou with all of his heart. The beggars, even if they had a lot to say, could not voice out their thoughts. 

    The criminal slave had always been a person with little hope, but this time when he faced A-Chou, he felt longing again. He hoped A-Chou’s sickness could pass. This cavern in the bridge was full of beggars, but no one was willing to come close to him. Only when he was at A-Chou’s side could the criminal slave feel that he was still a human. 

    A-Chou couldn’t go out to beg for food anymore, and the two could only rely on the beggars around them to share some of their food. The criminal slave was accustomed to hunger and offered every bit to A-Chou first, tricking A-Chou and saying that he himself had already eaten. The beggars also helped the criminal slave in his tricks. They were closer to A-Chou, and didn’t want to care about whether this criminal slave’s belly was full or not. 

    During the day, the beggars all went out to find food, and only the criminal slave accompanied A-Chou beneath the cold and windy bridge. 

    “A-Chou.” The criminal slave repeatedly helped A-Chou apply the already largely ineffective herbal medicine, as he used his strange voice to ask A-Chou, “Where did you come from, were you always called A-Chou?” 

    A-Chou dipped his fingers in the ash next to the fire, and carefully drew a few strokes on the ground. He then let the criminal slave look.

    The remaining eye of the criminal slave could not see clearly, and he shook his head at A-Chou.

    A-Chou drew again, in much larger strokes than the last time. 

    “A bun.” The criminal slave could see clearly this time, and his face held a rare smile, “Twenty-nine meat buns? A-Chou what do you want to say to me? You can write, so write it out for me.” 

    Pointing at the three characters forming twenty-nine (T/N: 二十九), A-Chou shook his hand again at the criminal slave.

    The criminal slave asked, “Are these three words wrong?” The criminal slave’s head almost touched the ground, “It’s twenty-nine ah.”

    For a long time, A-Chou and the criminal slave gestured at each other. Nowadays, these two had a tacit understanding in living their lives with each other, but A-Chou had no way to tell the criminal slave the meaning of his drawing. 

    “Meat bun.” The criminal slave finally asked, “A-Chou wants to eat meat buns?”

    A-Chou hurriedly shook his head. Right now they didn’t even have enough food to eat, how  could he eat a meat bun? He pointed again at the criminal slave. 

    “I don’t eat meat,” the criminal slave said.

    A-Chou slept underneath the bridge for three days, and on the fourth day he regained some vigor. This made the criminal slave and the beggars very happy, all of them assuming that A-Chou had finished enduring this trial. A-Chou used a cloth to wrap up his long-ruined face, and then on that night carried the emaciated criminal slave out from under the bridge. 

    The criminal slave did not know where A-Chou was going to take him. He was afraid that A-Chou would send him back to the Pleasure Compound, and softly pleaded with A-Chou, “A-Chou, delay a few days before sending me back.” 

    A-Chou glanced back at the criminal slave and shook his head.

    The criminal slave became silent. He’d lived a few good days and forgotten that he was only a criminal slave who could not even receive death when he sought it. A-Chou was already good enough to him, but he still wanted to bother his already ill A-Chou? As expected, he wasn’t a good person! 

    A-Chou carried the criminal slave on his back out of the red-light district. Those who passed by them one after another covered their noses and avoided them, afraid to slightly touch the two who stunk from head to toe, covered in rags. 

    “A-Chou,” the criminal slave urgently asked A-Chou, “where are you going to take me?”

    A-Chou pointed to the front.

    “I, can’t, can’t go, ah, A-Chou.” The criminal slave was anxious and afraid. His speech, which was already difficult to understand, became stuttering. 

    A-Chou turned back and used his forehead to rub once against the criminal slave’s face. He  turned around and continued to carry the criminal slave forward on his back. 

    “A-Chou,” the voice of the criminal slave carried weeping tones, “I can’t go, you, you alone, go alone.”

    Aside from the red-light district, the streets of the capital were tranquil after nightfall.  

    “Let me come down.” The criminal slave looked up at the falling snow above his head, and he patted A-Chou’s shoulder gently.

    “Scram!” A man ran past the two on a fast horse and shouted loudly. 

    The horse brushed against A-Chou and he became unsteady, his two hands loosening, and the criminal slave slid from his back down to the snowy ground.  

    “A-Chou?!” The criminal slave watched A-Chou fall before him with wide eyes. In his panic, he finally let out a loud cry, calling A-Chou’s name. 

    A-Chou was embraced in the criminal slave’s arms. He looked at the criminal slave and spit out ink-black blood. 

    The criminal slave tore the cloth off A-Chou’s face. He covered A-Chou’s mouth with his hands, thinking that he could block off A-Chou’s mouth like this, thinking that like this the blood wouldn’t come spurting out. 

    “In front!” There was the clamor of people’s voices behind them.

    A-Chou’s mouth moved, as if to say something to the criminal slave.

    “A-Chou, don’t die.” A person who hoped for death all day long begged another to live.

    A-Chou’s head fell askew in the arms of the criminal slave. This man <a TITLE=”(T/N: lit. =  the final radiance of a setting sun. Points to final lucidity or activity before death)”> who had had a flash of activity prior to his demise </A> finally spent the last of the oil in his lantern. 

    “A-Chou?” The criminal slave falteringly stretched out his hand to feel for A-Chou’s breath.

    “It turns out that you can speak the human language!” The boss brought people and caught up from behind. Hearing the criminal slave shouting for A-Chou, he kicked him to the ground. “Otherwise I would think you were entirely pitiful! You dared pretend to be mute?!” 

    “Please help him sir,” the criminal slave fell to the ground and begged the boss.

    A guard reached out a hand and placed it under A-Chou’s nose. “Dead,” he  proclaimed.

    “Wretched unlucky thing!” The boss vehemently stepped on the slave’s hand. “You actually dared to run with a dead person? You want to cause the deaths of everyone in our compound, is that right? I’ll see you run!” The boss personally handled matters this time. When he heard that the ugly beggar had carried the criminal slave on his back and run, the boss was so frightened he nearly lost half his life. This was someone the government had handed over to him; if the slave escaped, would the boss be able to keep his own life? 

    Several old beggars who lived in the cavern under the bridge also rushed over at this time. They glanced at the criminal slave being kicked and cursed at by the boss in the middle of the street, and then walked over to the front of  A-Chou. 

    A beggar felt for A-Chou’s breathing, pressed an ear against A-Chou’s chest to listen, and then reported to his companions: “Dead.” 

    “Ai!” The old beggar looked at A-Chou’s body and shook his head. “You followed me all the way here, begging for food. A person who wanted to return to his homeland in Xuanzhou, how could he stop his steps here?” 

    The beggars took A-Chou away.

    The criminal slave was dragged away by a guard. He knew that the man’s name was A-Chou, but A-Chou did not know that he had a name–Luo Wei. The criminal slave’s tears could not flow out; the blood pouring from his body served in their stead. 

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ASV Chapter 70: Rainstorm


Qin Kaiyi kept falling, falling, falling, as if falling into an endless hell. His whole body was shrouded in blue light, and his face was deathly pale because of the insect in his abdomen. He lifted his head and looked at the sky distancing itself farther and farther away from him; his mind was full of chaotic memories and bewildering voices. Shen Feixiao’s indifferent face seemed to still be in front of his eyes. The endless fall exhausted Qin Kaiyi’s last bit of energy, and he finally slowly closed his eyes. He sunk into a long sleep without end. 

The biting cold of winter. 

Pure white snowflakes fell gracefully from the sky, spreading a silver coat over the wasteland. 

A long ravine in the center of the wasteland revealed a faint blue light. The light appeared and disappeared like a ghost in the dark night, making people feel shiver upon seeing it. 

When a cold snowflake fell on the tips of Qin Kaiyi’s hair, he finally woke up from a long sleep. The turbulent blood in his heart rendered him unable to refrain from cursing out: “Shen Feixiao you son of a b*tch… f*ck your uncle.” 

“This plot is too distorted.” After waking up, Qin Kaiyi began to observe his situation. He found that he was trapped by the chains formed by blue light. Let alone leave, just putting a bit of distance between him and the formation would be very difficult. 

Although Qin Kaiyi’s heart sank to the pit of his stomach when he saw this scene, the system sound he heard when he woke up gave him a little comfort. [System Prompt: Completed Qin Shi’s sealing plot in advance; obtained 10% return. Double the reward for entering the later part of the plot, the current return value is 75%; completed Qin Shi’s sealing plot in advance; obtained 10% return. Double the reward for entering the later part of the plot, the current return value is 75%]

In fact, Qin Kaiyi discovered that the more he advanced into the later part of the novel, the higher the return value he would receive. Especially after entering the postponed plot, Qin Kaiyi guessed that he could complete one or two more tasks and return. 

But in his memory, he only wrote that Qin Shi was sealed. He didn’t have the opportunity to write the subsequent plot, because after he wrote this scene, he was dragged into this world by a hand reaching from his computer. 

Therefore, Qin Kaiyi did not know how events would play out later. But the problem he most worried about now… was obviously the Shen Feixiao who had been heavily offended by himself. 

Qin Kaiyi knew that he didn’t need to eat, but not having to eat did not mean that he could live well in such a harsh environment. Because his demonic energy was sealed, his body could no longer resist the cold. Although it didn’t die, this cold feeling was really uncomfortable, and now… it began to snow again.

Qin Kaiyi gave a bitter chuckle. He had to sigh deeply at his extremely bad luck. 

“It would be nice if Yan Gu was here.” Qin Kaiyi, trapped in the formation, leaned quietly against the rock wall. In fact, he really wanted to sit down and rest for a while, but when he found out that the ground was actually cooler, he gave up this sort of thinking. “Although he wasn’t reliable, at least there was someone to talk to…”

He didn’t feel the passing of time when in seclusion, but now he finally discovered how slow time passed. This kind of time that seemed to have no end made Qin Kaiyi inexplicably feel dread. Although he didn’t know how long Shen Feixiao intended to imprison him, he did know Shen Feixiao could imprison him for as long as he wanted. 

Time finally froze in Qin Kaiyi’s world. He lifted his head to look up at the hazy sky, and used the tip of his tongue to lick a cold snowflake that had fallen to the side of his mouth. 

Shen Feixiao came to the demon-subduing array and saw such a scene. The shixiong who had woken up at some unknown time was expressionlessly leaning against the rock wall that was covered in overgrown wilderness. His incomparably sickly paleness contrasted against the red lotus patterns on his face, making him appear extremely frail. He wore white clothes with a red changshan (T/N: long men’s traditional Chinese gown). His originally handsome, clear, fresh and elegant manner fiercely transmuted into a kind of confusing charm. 

When he saw Qin Kaiyi sticking out the tip of his tongue and licking a snowflake at the corner of his mouth, Shen Feixiao’s expression finally moved. A cold smile overflowed in his densely purple eyes, and his lips also curved into a smile. 

So much, so much, after spending so much time, he finally held his favorite in his hands. 

Shen Feixiao walked in front of Qin Kaiyi with a few steps. He gazed at Qin Kaiyi in front of him with a tender expression that caused Qin Kaiyi’s hair to stand on end. 

“… Shen Feixiao.” Although the demonic qi in the body was suppressed, Qin Kaiyi was still very sensitive to the breath of people who came close to him. When Shen Feixiao walked in front of him, he opened his eyes. 

“Shixiong,” Shen Feixiao saw Qin Kaiyi open his eyes and called out softly.

“…” Qin Kaiyi’s expression was very complicated when he saw Shen Feixiao. He knew that it was definitely not a good thing for Shen Feixiao to come to him at this time.

“How are you these days?” Shen Feixiao’s tone was calm, and he seemed to care little about the irreversible state of his relationship with Qin Kaiyi. 

“Not bad.” Qin Kaiyi smiled sarcastically. “What do you want?”

“I have always been wondering why you do this.” Without answering Qin Kaiyi’s question, Shen Feixiao walked slowly towards Qin Kaiyi, gently holding Qin Kaiyi’s chin with his hand. “Why you hate me so much, but at the same time help me at any cost.”

Qin Kaiyi wanted to get rid of Shen Feixiao’s hand, but he still refrained. He knew it was not the time to lose his temper. If he really provoked Shen Feixiao to anger, he would still be the one to suffer a calamity.  

“Why can you kick me off the cliff with one foot, and why can you jump into the magma to save me regardless of perils?” Saying this much, Shen Feixiao shook his head slightly. He then gave a long sigh, “But now that we have gotten to this point, I don’t care anymore. “

“… Shen Feixiao, are you crazy.” Qin Kaiyi’s expression was a bit ugly. He found that Shen Feixiao’s heart demon was really serious. That kind of smile which held unbounded evil intent made him have the illusion that he would meet with a great disaster… 

“Shixiong why do you ask such a thing?” Shen Feixiao heard Qin Kaiyi’s question, and the smile on his face disappeared instantly. He held Qin Kaiyi’s chin with more and more force, as if he wanted to crush it. 

“Let me go!” The pain made Qin Kaiyi involuntarily want to open Shen Feixiao’s hand, but he was grasped by Shen Feixiao while trying to shake him off. 

“But I remember very clearly when shixiong slapped me in the face last time.” Shen Feixiao’s eyes became colder and colder, and he no longer controlled the strength in the hand holding Qin Kaiyi. 

“Ah!” That feeling like his wrist would be pinched to pieces made Qin Kaiyi scream. There was no way out; as long as he was in this formation, he had no chance to fight back.

“Hehe.” Looking at Qin Kaiyi’s unbearably pained look, Shen Feixiao lightly laughed once. He let go of Qin Kaiyi’s wrist, and then embraced Qin Kaiyi’s waist without hesitation.

Qin Kaiyi’s waist was very thin. If one only looked at it from the outside, he completely wouldn’t be able to tell that Qin Kaiyi’s waist felt so good to the touch. 

“Shixiong, have you been touched by someone else?” Shen Feixiao was slightly taller than Qin Kaiyi, so it didn’t seem out of place when he held Qin Kaiyi. He used one hand to hold Qin Kaiyi’s waist, while his other pinched his chin, forcing Qin Kaiyi to look at him, then asking the question that had always been bothering him. 

“…” Although Qin Kaiyi was a homebody otaku, he was not dull enough to still not understand Shen Feixiao’s meaning. Before, Shen Feixiao gave him a wake-up call when he forcibly kissed him. Now Shen Feixiao’s question clearly illustrated the cruel reality. 

“What nonsense are you saying, Shen Feixiao, I am your shixiong!!!” Qin Kaiyi was unable to struggle under Shen Feixiao’s restraint. He wanted to push Shen Feixiao away, but found that he didn’t have the strength at all.

“… No one has touched?” His thumb gently rubbed Qin Kaiyi’s lips, and Shen Feixiao whispered softly, “That Le Dong has touched shixiong’s waist right? But he’s already dead, and that Wei He… in addition, Ziyang Pei, have they touched you, shixiong?”

“What the hell kind of nonsense are you talking about, Shen Feixiao you madman!!” Qin Kaiyi had a bad hunch.

“Everyone who has touched shixiong must die.” Shen Feixiao’s appearance was originally good, and when he smiled brightly it could light up someone’s vision even more. But it was just this kind of smile that made Qin Kaiyi feel like all the blood in his body had frozen. 

Qin Kaiyi knew that what Shen Feixiao said was not a joke—he was serious.

“… Hey.” Qin Kaiyi’s whole person was dazed. He completely didn’t understand why things developed like this, let alone why Shen Feixiao would have such distorted feelings for himself.

“Don’t be afraid, I won’t hurt shixiong.” The hand holding Qin Kaiyi’s waist used more and more force, as if to wring to break. Shen Feixiao let go of the hand holding Qin Kaiyi’s chin, and turned his head to bury it in Qin Kaiyi’s neck. 

“…” Qin Kaiyi suddenly gave birth to the impulse to smash things and roar. Who would come to tell him what was wrong with this plot!!! What the hell was wrong with it!!!! (T/N: he uses 肿么了, sounds like zhong me le, instead of 怎么了, which sounds like zěn me le. Internet slang. Zhong means swollen). 

“Shen Feixiao, you calm down a bit,” Qin Kaiyi said weakly. “I am your shixiong ah.”

“I know ah.” Shen Feixiao’s smile was as bright as a cherry tree growing luxuriantly from the nutrients of a buried body. “How could I not know.”

Qin Kaiyi’s face froze. He felt a cool hand slide down his collar to his chest. He gasped a little, and then ruthlessly raised his foot to kick at Shen Feixiao. 

This kind of slow movement was naturally easily avoided by Shen Feixiao. He looked at Qin Kaiyi, who was so frightened that it became visible on his face. Shen Feixiao lowered his eyelids and said lightly, “Since shixiong is so afraid, I will help shixiong.”

“You get lost!!!” Hearing these words, Qin Kaiyi finally completely emotionally collapsed. He didn’t know where the strength came from, but he actually managed to struggle from Shen Feixiao’s arms. He fell to a sitting position on the ground and, ignoring everything, crawled in another direction. But before he could climb the span of two steps, his feet were caught in Shen Feixiao’s hands.

That gloomy-faced man at this time had an expression that was wholly intoxicated. He grabbed Qin Kaiyi’s feet and pulled him back bit by bit. “Shixiong, don’t be afraid.” I will make you fall in love with this feeling.

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Warnings: mentions of noncon, confinement 

I hope everyone read the tags/warnings on the novel updates page prior to reading this novel.  

ASV Chapter 69: Entering the Formation

Qin Kaiyi thought that he must be crazy. He clearly knew that Ziyang Pei asked him to go to the Lingshan Sect with bad intentions, but he still ignored Yan Gu’s advice and set out without looking back. Upon parting, when he looked at the spiritless and emptied mask left behind by Yan Gu, he sighed for a long time. He softly and quietly placed the mask into his storage ring, before following the vanguard sent by Ziyang Pei out.

For the duration of the journey, Qin Kaiyi never relaxed. His mood became even heavier the moment he saw Qing Xuzi. 

After parting at Kaiyang with Qing Xuzi, Qin Kaiyi foresaw the arrival of today’s scene. But when he actually confronted Qing Xuzi’s bitterly loathing expression, his heart still produced a difficult-to-describe, bitter pain. 

The old man who used to treat him as a dear son was finally standing on the opposite side, and… wanted to put him to death.

Hua Lian and Lingshan Sect’s advance parties met on a wasteland. Although Qin Kaiyi did not know the geographical distribution of this continent, when he came to this wasteland, Qin Kaiyi still keenly noticed that something was wrong. A kind of inexplicable sense of familiarity aroused a kind of strange panic in his heart, as if he had forgotten something but couldn’t think of it. 

Qing Xuzi’s gaze at Qin Kaiyi was complex. He thought that the method proposed by Shen Feixiao was a bit improper, but after careful consideration, it was the best way–it could imprison the demonic cultivator who possessed Qin Shi’s body, and wouldn’t harm Qin Shi’s body. But he didn’t know why, when Qing Xuzi saw that demonic cultivator in the distance with his face covered in red lotus patterns, his heart still faintly wavered. 

Shen Feixiao did not give Qing Xuzi a chance to hesitate. He now had a high status in the Lingshan Sect. Although he still honored Qing Xuzi as a master, in fact, when deciding certain things, he no longer had to follow the instructions of Qing Xuzi. So when he saw Qing Xuzi’s wavering, he only hung a shallow smile on his mouth. Then he unhesitatingly issued an order–he had waited for this day for too long. 

Qin Kaiyi stood at the back of the Hua Lian Sect ranks, watching Shen Feixiao standing in the distance. He finally found what seemed wrong. How could they encounter Shen Feixiao and Qing Xuzi so easily? Those two people who should have stayed to oversee Lingshan Sect, how did they end up here?? And they were so aggressive in appearance! 

But even if Qin Kaiyi noticed the anomaly, it was too late. He watched the disciples of the Lingshan Sect not far away put up a strange formation, and then attack the Hua Lian Sect troops.

The Hua Lian disciples around him were motionless, as if they were frightened into stupidity. Qin Kaiyi was stunned for a while, and then immediately responded. He wanted to fly back and distance himself from the attacking Lingshan Sect disciples. 

However, at the moment when Qin Kaiyi wanted to retreat, he was shocked to find that the Hua Lian disciples who had been motionlessly standing blocked his retreat, either intentionally or unintentionally!

Zi Yangpei and Shen Feixiao colluded together! This realization made all the blood in Qin Kaiyi’s body run cold. At this moment, the familiar system prompt sounded [System prompt: Completed the task of assisting Ziyang Pei with attacking the Lingshan Sect, obtained 10% return value. Due to doubling the reward, obtained 20% return value. The current return value is 55%. Completed the task of assisting Ziyang Pei with attacking the Lingshan Sect, obtained 10% return value. Due to doubling the reward, obtained 20% return value. The current return value is 55%.] The sudden prompt sound made Qin Kaiyi still for a moment, and in the short time that he froze, the disciples of the Lingshan Sect were about to attack him!

In this desperate situation, Qin Kaiyi no longer cared about the Hua Lian disciples. He struck with a palm at the disciples trying to stop him, and then attempted to leave quickly.

But Qin Kaiyi did not expect that, at the moment when he made the cloud hand seal, the golden core in his sea of qi suddenly suffered severe pain. The pain penetrated into his bone marrow, as if it would rip and tear apart all the flesh and bones in his body. Qin Kaiyi immediately lost all his strength.

“Wu…” Qin Kaiyi, who was covering his abdomen, gritted his teeth. Because the pain was too severe, he soon bit out blood, but he could not feel it at all, still holding only thought in his mind–he must escape.

Though Shen Feixiao was far away from Qin Kaiyi, his keen eyesight could pick up every one of Qin Kaiyi’s movements. He looked at his sickly pale complexion, and the lips bitten to bleeding, and how he didn’t forget to slowly move away with his two hands and two feet even as he was pained to the point of almost fainting. 

Shen Feixiao’s expression was very indifferent, as if he was looking at something insignificant. However, the faintly overflowing purple in his eyes told the people around him how excited he was. 

“Continue.” When a disciple came to ask Shen Feixiao for instructions, Shen Feixiao ignored Qing Xuzi’s suspicious expression and issued another order.

When Qin Kaiyi fell to the ground, his consciousness was a little unclear. Although the appearance of the system prompt sound allowed him to find a thread of meager consciousness, the spates of pain that came like tides still consumed his will bit by bit. 

“Spread the formation.” The familiar voice was indifferent and lacked emotion. Shen Feixiao quietly watched as his script was about to be completed.

Qin Kaiyi’s barely managed to force his slackening gaze to focus, and found that he had been surrounding by countless Lingshan Sect disciples at some point. The Hua Lian Sect disciples were long gone–without a doubt, that fellow Ziyang Pei sold him out. 

A pained smile hung on the corners of his mouth. Qin Kaiyi didn’t know what he was about to face, but Tang Shayun’s tragic encounter dimly floated before his eyes.

Along with Shen Feixiao’s formation, a blue light flashed around the disciples of the Lingshan Sect. That light was gloomy and deep, with an unusually cold aura, wrapping Qin Kaiyi up layer by layer. 

Although Qin Kaiyi was still in pain, he could clearly feel that the surging demonic energy in his dantian was gradually suppressed into a small space.

“… Wu.” Qin Kaiyi was soaked with cold sweat all over his body, and had difficulty breathing. He never gave up struggling, and with an obstinate attitude that could chill people’s hearts, he wanted to escape the Lingshan Sect formation. 

“Open the array.” Shen Feixiao’s orders were methodical thorough, and his eyes were indifferent. One couldn’t see a trace of evidence in his expression that he was doing such a cruel thing to another. 

The Lingshan Sect disciples heard this and sped up their hand seals.

Qing Xuzi looked at Qin Shi’s unendurably pained appearance, and finally a trace of unbearableness appeared in his eyes.

Shen Feixiao’s formation was a long-lost ancient one. Qing Xuzi didn’t know where Shen Feixiao got this formation, but when Shen Feixiao described the prototype of it, Qing Xuzi had to sigh. Ancient formation methods really deserved their reputation.

What happened in front of him furthered the validity of his sigh. The demonic cultivator in front of him had no strength to fight back.

As the Lingshan Sect disciples continually formed their hand seals, the ground which Qin Kaiyi fell on showed a slight crack. That seemingly inconspicuous crack slowly expanded as the blue light grew stronger, and finally became a terrifyingly large mouth which swallowed Qin Kaiyi into the ground in one gulp. 

When Shen Feixiao looked at this scene, only then did a bit of an expression appear on his face. That expression seemed both sad and joyful, with an indescribable sense of complexity.

“Is this done?” Qing Xuzi turned to look at Shen Feixiao: “Is the demonic cultivator’s cultivation abolished?”

“No.” Shen Feixiao’s tone was soft: “It’s not abolished, but it’s imprisoned.”

“Do you know where Qin’er’s consciousness is?” Qing Xuzi frowned as he looked at Shen Feixiao’s unmoved face: “What if the demonic cultivator becomes so angry that he destroys Qin’er’s consciousness, what then?”

“We have a lot of time to ask.” Shen Feixiao didn’t seem to sense Qing Xuzi’s displeasure at all. His expression was quiet and serene, as if he had just completed some important ceremony. 

“… Then you’re on your own.” Qing Xuzi found that no matter what he said, it seemed useless to this disciple, so he gave a long sigh and left in a huff. (T/N: 拂袖而去, shook his sleeves and left. You know how in those ancient Chinese dramas offended people flick their sleeves and leave). 

“I have plenty of time.” The sinister ravine that appeared in front of him was serene and hidden in its depth, swallowing everything like the large mouth of a huge beast. There was a faint blue light in the gorge, and it gave a feeling of biting cold which could penetrate the human heart. 

“Plenty enough to possess you for a lifetime,” Shen Feixiao murmured to himself as he looked at the ravine. After a while, he came back to himself and took out something that looked like a silkworm cocoon from his storage ring. He handed it to a Hua Lian Sect disciple wearing Lingshan Sect clothes: “Take it, and tell Ziyang Pei thank you.”

“Yes.” The Hua Lian Sect disciple received the Tian Luo Xin and flew away towards Hua Lian Sect. 


Ziyang Pei’s mood when he saw his disciple presenting him the Tian Luo Xin was very complicated. It was so complicated that he didn’t understand what he himself was thinking. 

The Tian Luo Xin in his hand exuding a sweet scent was very beautiful, and he couldn’t see even a bit of the bloody implications it held. 

“Qin Shi, don’t blame me.” Seeing the celestial phenomena in the sky appearing because of Shen Feixiao’s formation, Ziyang Pei clenched the Tian Luo Xin in his hand. He muttered in his mouth: “blame is just blame…” We were born at the wrong time. 

If he was still the weak little demonic cultivator of the past, instead of the Hua Lian Sect leader with heavy responsibilities… would he have the courage to fight for what he really wanted, instead of standing in the distance and personally watching others place his beloved thing into their embrace?

Thinking of this, Ziyang Pei let slip a bitter smile. He clenched the Tian Luo Xin of extraordinary significance to him, and involuntarily revealed an indescribable pain in his eyes.

The godly poisonous insect that the Ziyang family had to bear for generations was the biggest debt he owed to Ziyang Shi. Up to now, Ziyang Pei was unclear on how much he had had to pay for this debt. He only knew that, just like ten thousand years ago, the him ten thousand years later would end up repeating this disastrous approach and suffer the painful loss of something important. 

ASV Chapter 68: Yan Gu

After Shen Feixiao left, Qin Kaiyi spent a long time thinking about what went wrong and finally came to a conclusion–the distortion of the plot was actually caused by him.

If not because he, out of guilt, used the masked man’s identity to care for Shen Feixiao, then Shen Feixiao would not be the way he was now. The heart demons Yu Hong spoke about would also not be in Shen Feixiao’s body. 

But it was too late to say anything now. The plot had already been distorted, and Shen Feixiao no longer embraced left and right like in the novel (T/N: ie many concubines), instead seeming to have feelings for Qin Kaiyi that he should not. 

“Is this really the novel I wrote?” After Qin Kaiyi thought about it seriously, he sighed helplessly. What would happen next, he couldn’t tell for sure. According to the current Shen Feixiao he couldn’t even say for sure that he would help when Ziyang Pei attacked the Lingshan Sect. If Shen Feixiao really just crossed his arms and looked on as Ziyang Pei extinguished the Lingshan Sect… then Qin Kaiyi really wouldn’t know what to say. 

The competitive rhythm of the Kaiyang gathering was very fast. Although Qin Kaiyi did not have the intention to strive for victory, he still met with a few waves of people who coveted him. (T/N: can be translated as lusted after. Seems QKY is a hot commodity?) Of course, compared with his weakness in front of Shen Feixiao, Qin Kaiyi found that he actually easily dealt with those who wanted to attack him. He didn’t meet with anyone like Shen Feixiao, whose spiritual pressure was so great that he couldn’t even breathe. 

Okay, this was actually like a primary school student who had been solving high school questions. When he finally got to do some primary school problems, he couldn’t help but sigh–these questions were really too easy. 

Wei He didn’t come back after he slipped away. Qin Kaiyi didn’t have any particular feelings about this flower thief whose temperament could be counted as pretty good. After all, they were just strangers coming together by chance, and he also killed Wei He’s apprentice. Wei He not avenging him was already very generous… 

At the end of the competition, Qin Kaiyi magically scored twelve points… He didn’t know how Shuihua Lianqiong calculated its points, so when the score column was published, he was a little surprised.

First place was unsurprisingly Shen Feixiao, who sat at the top of the list with a high score of 372, while the second place… was actually Wei He, who escaped faster than a rabbit.

Wei He showed an expression of surprise when he saw Qin Kaiyi. That expression seemed to say: that fellow Shen Feixiao actually let you leave without doing anything… that’s too abnormal… right?

“What are you looking at, what are you looking at,” Qin Kaiyi said in an unpleasant tone, “Look again and you’ll have to pay in coin.”

“Did he not do anything to you?” Wei He’s eyes flashed.

“Do what?” Hearing Wei He’s words, Qin Kaiyi couldn’t help remembering that ambiguous kiss from Shen Feixiao. His face collapsed instantly–as a homebody otaku, giving his first kiss to a man or something made him lose too much face! 

“Wu, it’s nothing.” Wei He touched his nose, and then smiled with embarrassment. “Isn’t this just my concern for you.”

“Thank you for your concern.” Qin Kaiyi rolled his eyes at Wei He.

After the Kaiyang gathering, the disciples of the various sects began to prepare to go back. Because of the large number of people, there were bound to be bumps along the way, so Qin Kaiyi decided to live in Kaiyang for a few days before returning to Hua Lian Sect.

But after making this decision, Qin Kaiyi received the paper crane from Ziyang Pei. He looked at the content written on it and frowned.

Ziyang Pei actually asked him to return to Hua Lian Sect within ten days… and looking at the tone of his words, he could feel that Ziyang Pei was anxious. 

Qin Kaiyi didn’t come up with a matter of course, but he didn’t dare to ignore Ziyang Pei’s instructions. Although Ziyang Pei did not threaten him with the insect in his seven years of living in the Hua Lian Sect, Qin Kaiyi understood Ziyang Pei and knew he couldn’t be arrogant because of this pampering. 

Just as Qin Kaiyi was preparing to return, a long-lost voice came from the sea of ​​knowledge that had been quiet for some time–“Qin Shi.”

“Yan Gu!!” Since that time at the inn, he hadn’t heard Yan Gu’s voice again. Qin Kaiyi, who had originally planned to ask Ziyang Pei what was going on, was very pleased to hear this voice, “What happened to you?”

“Take out the umbrella in your ring.” Yan Gu’s voice was weak.

“Umbrella?” Qin Kaiyi froze for a moment, then remembered the old umbrella he got in the secret realm and quickly took it out.

At the moment when he took out the ordinary-looking old umbrella, it suddenly shrouded in red light and soon changed into an unfamiliar man.

The man had long red hair, and his looks couldn’t be called completely handsome, but he had a manner about him that made people feel comfortable. Qin Kaiyi was in a daze for a while before saying, “Are you… Yan Gu?”

“En.” Yan Gu wore Lingshan Sect’s taoist clothing. When he saw Qin Kaiyi’s surprised look, he said helplessly, “Are you preparing to return to Hua Lian Sect just like that?”

“Yeah,” Qin Kaiyi answered. “The poisonous insect is with Ziyang Pei. If I don’t go back… wouldn’t I be out of luck?”

“I have told you that if you leave this continent, Ziyang Pei will have no way to control you.” Yan Gu stared at Qin Kaiyi with a strange look. “Why are you so stubborn?”

“I also don’t know.” Qin Kaiyi, who didn’t know how to explain, could only force out a laugh.

“If I haven’t guessed wrong, I’m afraid this time Ziyang Pei will attack Lingshan Sect.” Yan Gu’s expression was complicated. “Will you have the heart to raise your hand against Qing Xuzi?”

Of course he didn’t have heart. He didn’t expect Yan Gu to hit the nail on the head and point out the hesitation in his heart. Qin Kaiyi sighed and said, “I’m now just a demonic cultivator in Qing Xuzi’s eyes. Whatever I do isn’t related to Qing Xuzi. Besides, isn’t Shen Feixiao still in Lingshan Sect? I’m afraid Ziyang Pei won’t be able to reap any benefits.” 

“Is that so.” Yan Gu’s mouth responded, but his expression was not as carefree as his words. He saw that Qin Kaiyi did not intend to change his decision, and he gave up on persuasion. He turned his attention to the sword in Qin Kaiyi’s hands, “Don’t use that sword. Although you have a natural demonic body, if you really use it more, you might be affected.”

“En.” In fact, Qin Kaiyi rarely used the sword Zi Yangpei gave him. When encountering someone roughly evenly matched with him, hand seals were already more than enough. If he met with someone in Shen Feixiao’s class… don’t mention the sword, if he carried a rocket over it still wouldn’t have much use. 

“Since it’s decided, then go back earlier. It’s also better to make a lot of preparations.” Yan Gu looked at Qin Kaiyi clad entirely in red and, not knowing why, felt the uncertainty in his heart intensify… he remembered that when that person fell, he was wearing red. 

“I know.” Qin Kaiyi nodded. “Will you have a body from now on? Why did you suddenly disappear?”

“The sword that Ziyang Pei gave you has a problem.” Yan Gu did not want to speak further about his own problems, but brushed past it with one pen stroke, “My body can’t last for long, and if it’s injured by others my spirit will also be damaged.” 

“Oh.” Yan Gu’s solemn expression also made Qin Kaiyi’s mood a bit heavy. He quieted a while before saying, “Are you going back with me?”

“…” Yan Gu was silent.

“Are you going away?” Qin Kaiyi looked at the silent Yan Gu and inexplicably felt a coldness in his heart, “Where are you going?”

“I’ll find you,” Yan Gu looked at Qin Kaiyi and said, “but since I have a body, I want to go to where he left to take a look.”

“Xue Xian?” The emotions in Qin Kaiyi’s gaze were complicated.

“En.” Yan Gu smiled brightly. “When I’ve left… you have to take care.”

“I will.” Qin Kaiyi inexplicably felt the sadness of parting. 

“No.” Yan Gu’s expression was somewhat awkward. “I mean… when I’m not with you anymore, the red lotus patterns on your face, cough cough.”

“…” Qin Kaiyi’s expression distorted in an instant–how could he forget this!

“Ah, in fact, Shen Feixiao knows your identity anyway, and you don’t have to hide that you’re a demonic cultivator, wu… this pattern is also very good-looking.” Yan Gu nodded with satisfaction.

“Good-looking my ass!” It would be fine if he didn’t say it, now that he said it there was anger. The unreliable things that Yan Gu did all rushed up in Qin Kaiyi’s thoughts, angering him to the point that his eyes darkened. “Is there no way to get rid of these patterns?”

“Currently there isn’t.” Yan Gu snickered, “Hehe…”

“…” Qin Kaiyi suddenly felt a brutal mood rise up, making him want to beat Yan Gu up once.

But Yan Gu apparently predicted this danger. After saying a “good-bye” to Qin Kaiyi, he made the immortal hand seal and flew away out the window without hesitation, leaving Qin Kaiyi standing in the room gritting his teeth and whispering curses.

Next, since Ziyang Pei had urged him, Qin Kaiyi did not dare to delay. He spent seven days to return to the Hua Lian Sect. 

When Ziyang Pei first glanced at Qin Kaiyi, he showed a surprised expression. Only after a pause, he said, “What’s with your face?”

“Disfigured.” Qin Kaiyi said unhappily. 

“What about Yan Gu?” Zi Yangpei heard this and frowned slightly. It was unclear what he was thinking about. 

“Ran away with a woman.” Qin Kaiyi said casually.

“…” Zi Yangpei knew that Qin Kaiyi was talking nonsense and didn’t delve into it further, but his eyes flashed with displeasure. 

“Why are you so anxious to call me back?” Qin Kaiyi looked closely at Ziyang Pei, only to find that not even after a few dozen days of time, Zi Yangpei became haggard and his complexion was not too good. 

“After seven days we will attack Lingshan Sect.” Falling within Yan Gu’s expectations, Ziyang Pei called Qin Kaiyi back for this. 

“… Why are you so anxious?” Qin Kaiyi looked at Ziyang Pei and asked, “What happened?”

“Nothing.” Ziyang Pei very much wanted to say something, but he restrained himself. The Tian Luo Xin was still in Shen Feixiao’s hands… He must fulfill his promise.

But why was it that, when he looked at the person who regarded himself with a worrying expression, his originally resolute intentions wavered… never mind, if Qin Shi wanted to complain, then complain to him.

Finishing what he needed to say, Ziyang Pei left. Before leaving, he gave Qin Kaiyi an extremely complex look, making Qin Kaiyi’s whole body cold. 

“… This feeling, why is it like…” Like jumping into a trap that was clearly there? Qin Kaiyi vaguely noticed that Hua Lian Sect’s sizable actions were related to Shen Feixiao, but he couldn’t grasp any of the main threads of the matter. He expunged the hesitation and cowardice in his heart when he thought of the 20% return value he could receive–he must continue on this path, even if he knew that a ten thousand fathoms deep abyss lay ahead of him. 

ASV Chapter 67: Ruthless and Tyrannical

Regarding the issue of height, Wei He could be said to have a face full of bloody tears. Because he suffered serious discrimination as a child which caused trauma to his soul, he really had no affection for people who are taller than him.

Fortunately, by modern standards, there would rarely be people taller than Wei He’s 183 centimeters. Of course, this very small number of people included Qin Kaiyi and Shen Feixiao.

After knowing the cruel truth that Qin Kaiyi was taller than him, Wei He’s entire person felt not so good. He followed Qin Kaiyi with a sullen face, and after finding a safe place of refuge, he remained silent with unknown thoughts swirling in his head. 

“Can you stop using that kind of gaze to look at me?” Qin Kaiyi, who felt goosebumps rising at Wei He’s stare, said with embarrassment, “I won’t become short no matter how much you stare at me.”

“Really…” Hearing this, Wei He suddenly gave an extremely brilliant smile. “I have a method if you are willing…”

“Not willing!” Qin Kaiyi refused with righteous firmness: “Don’t even think about it.”

“Okay.” Big dog Wei He’s ears drooped again. 

“But do you think the place I’ve found is safe?” Qin Kaiyi wisely chose to change the subject when he looked at Wei He’s dispirited appearance. “I think staying a bit further away from the Lingshan Sect disciples is better.”

After hearing this, Wei He finally recovered a bit. He looked around and found that Qin Kaiyi had somehow pulled him into a thick bush. The two of them squatted carefully on the ground, looking extremely wretched…

“… How did you figure that this bush is safe?” Wei He turned his head helplessly. “Can you tell me?”

“Ah, this is what I think.” Qin Kaiyi hadn’t noticed the abnormality of Wei He’s attitude, and was very happy to elaborate on his opinion, “Look, anyone who seriously participates in the competition will definitely want to quickly obtain victory. Then we can hide in the bushes, and avoid most of the contestants. Even if we meet one, it should be another one who doesn’t want to participate… Hey? What do you mean by that look? “

“… it doesn’t mean anything.” Wei He covered his face in suffering. “You don’t even know what the rules of the game are… and can actually come to such a conclusion.”

“Is there a problem?” Qin Kaiyi forced a smile.

“Of course.” Wei He was about to say something, and suddenly stopped. He stretched out his hand to cover Qin Kaiyi’s mouth, and motioned for Qin Kaiyi to look to his right.

Qin Kaiyi didn’t understand what Wei He meant at first, and he was stunned when he glanced over—not far from the bushes where he hid, Shen Feixiao, who had just left with Qing Xuzi, was fighting with a few black-clothed cultivators. Although Qin Kaiyi was an amateur when it came to fights, he could still feel that the atmosphere between Shen Feixiao and those cultivators wasn’t quite right… it had the overtones of fighting to the death. 

“Your shidi really dares to mess with anyone.” Wei He sighed quietly, “Fighting with three elders of the Red Lightning Sect… he has good prospects.”

“Really?” Qin Kaiyi gave Wei He a suspicious look. Why did he feel like there was a hidden meaning in Wei He’s words? 

But no matter what, Qin Kaiyi, a layman, could still see that Shen Feixiao was really powerful. Even under the siege of three people, he was not at a disadvantage. Instead, as time went on, those three black-clothed men that tried their best to attack Shen Feixiao seemed to lose strength. 

“What are the rules of the competition?” Qin Kaiyi saw that Shen Feixiao was in no real danger and turned to ask Wei He.

“Oh… It’s actually quite simple.” Wei He stared at Shen Feixiao still fighting with several people and whispered to Qin Kaiyi, “You beat a person until they can’t fight back, and you can get one point.”

“… then?” Qin Kaiyi had a bad hunch.

“Then if someone finds you hiding in the bushes, they will definitely think you’re weak.” Wei He still didn’t turn his head.

“… Okay.” Qin Kaiyi smiled bitterly… It seemed that no matter where he hid, he couldn’t avoid the competition.

“But the problem now is…” Wei He’s voice lightly fluttered. “Let’s first run for our lives.”

“Yi?” Qin Kaiyi paused, then looked into the distance. He was shocked to find that among the four people fighting before, only Shen Feixiao was left standing. The other three were lying on the ground motionless, and it was unclear if they were still alive. This wasn’t the most terrifying thing, the most terrifying thing was… Shen Feixiao, towards where Qin Kaiyi and Wei He hid, revealed an incredibly gentle smile. 

…… Qin Kaiyi thought in horror that Shen Feixiao really was becoming more and more abnormal. 

“Don’t hide, wait for my call to run, and run quickly,” Wei He whispered and then stood up from the bushes. He then greeted Shen Feixiao: “Yo, long time no see . “

Shen Feixiao’s memory was obviously good. He glanced at Wei He, and hooked the corners of his mouth into a smile. “Long time no see.”

Qin Kaiyi stood up awkwardly and greeted Shen Feixiao. “Hehe, you know each other.”

“Of course we know each other.” Shen Feixiao gave a smile that was not quite a smile. “It’s all thanks to you shixiong. Otherwise, how can we know each other.”

“…” What was going on with this darkly turbulent atmosphere, Qin Kaiyi thought silently. Why did he have the delusion that Shen Feixiao was very angry…

“Ah, little shidi, since you are so busy, we won’t disturb you.” Wei He’s face was obviously thicker than Qin Kaiyi’s. “Right? Qin Shi, quickly say goodbye to your shidi, we still have important things to do.”

“Er… right ha.” Qin Kaiyi felt like the smile on his own face couldn’t hold on any longer–now he was sure that Shen Feixiao’s anger was definitely not his delusion!! Mother’s eggs, that bear child’s eyes were about to turn purple, ahhhhhhhhhhh, Wei He you unreliable fellow, I actually believed in you ahhhhhh, you’re even more fraudulent (T/N: 坑爹 = cheating this daddy) than Yan Gu ahhhhhhhhh.

Just when Qin Kaiyi was roaring internally, Wei He shouted at Qin Kaiyi, “Run!!”

Then he ran away happily, leaving Qin Kaiyi and Shen Feixiao alone to look at each other… After quite a while, Qin Kaiyi couldn’t help but squeeze a “fuck” out from his mouth–he obviously underestimated Wei He’s professional accomplishments as a flower-picking thief. He was a flower-picking thief, besides running away and bed techniques, f*ck your sister, what else can he do!!!

“Shixiong, you won’t run away with Senior Wei?” Shen Feixiao’s voice was soft. If he didn’t know better he would think that Shen Feixiao was quite gentle. Qin Kaiyi wiped the cold sweat on his forehead silently and decided to move Shen Feixiao with reasoning and reality, “Shidi, don’t be agitated hahaha…”

“Am I agitated?” Shen Feixiao slightly raised his chin, expression extremely indifferent. “Where does shixiong see that I am agitated?”

… Your eyes have become completely purple all right! Qin Kaiyi looked at Shen Feixiao walking closer and closer and suddenly had the urge to weep bitter tears, but only the tiny bit remaining of his villain’s dignity stopped him. He took a deep breath, and Qin Kaiyi pretended to be calm. “Shidi what is it that you want to say.”

Shen Feixiao, who was half a head taller than Qin Kaiyi, heard this and smiled clear and bright. “Me? I have nothing to say.” I don’t want to talk to you any more. The trap has been laid out. Although the time has not yet come, that won’t stop me from collecting some interest. 

“… Shidi.” Qin Kaiyi looked at Shen Feixiao, and the smile on his face gradually stiffened. He wanted to take a step back, but Shen Feixiao stretched out a hand to his waist and held him in his arms. 

“What’s there to be afraid of.” Shen Feixiao’s movements were firm. He held Qin Kaiyi’s waist in one hand and used the other to mercilessly pinch Qin Kaiyi’s chin. “When you used your foot to throw me off the cliff with one kick, why not be afraid then?”

“…” Qin Kaiyi didn’t know what to answer with. He felt that Shen Feixiao’s current situation was very wrong, but he couldn’t find a solution. His IQ wasn’t high enough… the fighting value was not high (T/N: 武力值, force value, gamers refer to this as combat ability in games)… even his villain’s halo was about to extinguish. 

“When you jumped into the magma without hesitation, why not be afraid?” Shen Feixiao was still talking. His words finally uncovered that layer of cloth between him and Qin Kaiyi (T/N: figurative cloth). 

“I…” The cold sweat on Qin Kaiyi’s forehead dripped down his cheek drop by drop; he didn’t know how to explain to Shen Feixiao.

“Why are you sweating,” Shen Feixiao laughed softly, gripping Qin Kaiyi’s hand harder. He forced Qin Kaiyi to raise his head and look at him. “I already told you, don’t be afraid of me. If not for shixiong, how could I get to this point… isn’t that right?”

“…” In fact, you could have gotten to this point without me. Qin Kaiyi had too much to say that he couldn’t say. At this moment, he finally discovered how great the difference between the Nascent Soul period and the Core Formation period was. When Shen Feixiao let out all of his aura, he even found breathing difficult. 

“Shixiong.” Looking at Qin Kaiyi’s panic-stricken eyes and lips gradually turning from rosy to pale, Shen Feixiao’s mood which had become very bad because of Wei He finally improved. He lowered his head and imprinted a gentle kiss onto Qin Kaiyi’s ice-cold lips. “Don’t be afraid of me.”

“…” So then Qin Kaiyi became unafraid of Shen Feixiao–is that possible!! Is it possible!! The truth was that Qin Kaiyi felt that he was about to be scared to tears!! What happened to Shen Feixiao, and why did he change from a stallion with three wives and four concubines to a gay man!! What happened to the plot in this world!!! The defensive line in his heart collapsed instantly. He didn’t know where his strength came from–Qin Kaiyi raised his hand and fiercely landed a slap on Shen Feixiao’s face!

“You stay away from me!!!” Qin Kaiyi bellowed: “Fuck you, you stay away from me!!!”

Shen Feixiao’s movements froze in an instant. His head was still slightly tilted because of Qin Kaiyi’s slap. After a while, a trace of blood flowed from the corner of Shen Feixiao’s mouth.

“…” Seeing that Shen Feixiao was actually hurt by himself, Qin Kaiyi’s heart tightened. After hurriedly gasping for breath a few times, he wanted to reach out a hand to feel Shen Feixiao’s face, but Shen Feixiao avoided him without hesitation. 

“I know.” (T/N: can be translated as “I got it.” Or, “I understand”). Those purple eyes reverted to their original black. Shen Feixiao’s face clearly did not have expression, but it terrified Qin Kaiyi: “I know.” 

Qin Kaiyi didn’t have a chance to ask Shen Feixiao what he knew. After Shen Feixiao finished speaking, he turned around and left without looking back, leaving Qin Kaiyi dazedly standing alone in the same place.

Somehow, the more I translate, the more an influx of bad reviews comes in on novelupdates.

The reviews regarding plot and characterizations are tolerable, but the ones virtue signalling about how they started reading the novel but then hated that it became problematic later are truly strange. The tags are right there on novelupdates!!! No one is deceiving anyone here!

I’m not thin-skinned but it does take the wind out of the translating/editing sails a bit. 

ASV Chapter 66: A Demonically Charming Smile

(T/N: The title of this chapter is actually part of the title of the book. The book title is something like “A Demonically Charming Smile from the Villain.”) 

Qin Kaiyi deeply felt that there might be something wrong with his brain circuitry. If Shen Feixiao came to talk to him, he would certainly feel that Shen Feixiao had problems. But when Shen Feixiao really pretended not to know him… he… even more so felt that Shen Feixiao had problems!

He must be conspiring; he must be conspiring!! Looking at Shen Feixiao standing with several Lingshan Sect disciples, Qin Kaiyi’s mood was very complicated. It could be said that he had watched Shen Feixiao grow up, watching him grow from a malnourished little radish head into the mature man before him. (T/N: little radish head = little kid). To a certain extent, Qin Kaiyi regarded Shen Feixiao as a son he had raised. When he saw Shen Feixiao ignoring him, he inexplicably had a feeling like his daughter had been married off and could no longer be retrieved…  

“Wu?” Wei He was obviously more reliable than Qin Kaiyi. He saw Qin Kaiyi’s face change as soon as he saw Shen Feixiao, and thought that Qin Kaiyi had ill will towards this shidi who had forced him. After thinking for a while, he said to Qin Kaiyi, “The competition will start soon, what are you going to do?”

“Find a place to hide,” Qin Kaiyi replied with the courage of conviction. 

“…” He long should have known what Qin Shi’s morality and conduct was like. Resisting the urge to cover his face, Wei He said with difficulty, “Could it be that you don’t have any other ideas?”

“Ideas? What ideas?” Qin Kaiyi looked at Wei He blankly. “Thinking about where to hide is relatively safe?”

“…” Wei He instantly felt like he was a chicken trying to talk with a duck. At this moment, he suddenly noticed that Shen Feixiao, who was standing behind Qin Kaiyi, glanced over here with a gaze full of menace and… rage.

Oh, Shen Feixiao was angry that Qin Shi was with him? Wei He touched his chin in a good mood and looked at the unsuspecting Qin Kaiyi. He smiled. “I remember the last time I saw you, you were a disciple of the Lingshan Sect. How come after I didn’t see you for a few years you hooked up with that guy Ziyang Pei?”

“Ah?” Qin Kaiyi didn’t expect Wei He’s thinking to jump around so fast, and he didn’t react for a while.

“I mean,” Wei He explained again kindly while looking at Shen Feixiao standing far away, “It wouldn’t be because something happened between you and your shidi, leading to you defecting to the Hua Lian Sect?”

“…” Qin Kaiyi wanted to say “How did you know”? But his remaining bit of reason made him hold back what he would have blurted out, and he said after a while of silence, “You don’t understand.”

“(⊙_⊙)?” Wei He.

“This is a very long story… I would have to start from Pangu opening the heavens and earth…” (T/N: Pangu = creator of the universe in Chinese myths) Qin Kaiyi narrowed his eyes and made himself look like he was recalling the past. 

“…” Wei He decided to give up on communicating with Qin Kaiyi. He now seriously suspected that Shen Feixiao’s illusion damaged Qin Kaiyi’s brain into thinking abnormally. Otherwise, how come he couldn’t communicate with Qin Kaiyi normally? 

Just as Qin Kaiyi and Wei He were struggling to communicate, Qin Kaiyi suddenly heard a familiar voice. This voice seemed to have aged a lot compared to seven years ago. That’s right, it was the first person he had seen when he came to this world, and also the old man who was hardest for him to let go of–Qing Xuzi. He actually came here, when he originally should have been staying at Lingshan Sect to oversee it. 

It was at this moment that Qin Kaiyi heard the sharp sound of the system prompt [System Prompt: Initiating the demonic attack on the Lingshan Sect plot, please assist Ziyang Pei in attacking the Lingshan Sect. Completion of the task will increase return value 10%. Due to delay in the plot, the reward will double. In the case of failure, deduction will double as well. Initiating the demonic attack on the Lingshan Sect plot, please assist Ziyang Pei in attacking the Lingshan Sect. Completion of the task will increase return value 10%. Due to delay in the plot, the reward will double. In the case of failure, deduction will double as well.] 

The sound of the system made Qin Kaiyi’s unceasingly tumultuous emotions upon seeing Qing Xuzi completely freeze. The plot changed again. The plot that should have happened ten years from now began early, and the sect attacking Lingshan became Hua Lian… more importantly, at such a moment of crisis, Qing Xuzi and Shen Feixiao–these two who could turn peril into safety–both were not at the sect! 

Yi (T/N: expression of surprise, tone lifts up at the end), wait wait. He seemed to have made one mistake. Suddenly grasping something, Qin Kaiyi’s eyes lit up. Even though the system prompt sounded, it didn’t say when that guy Ziyang Pei would attack the Lingshan Sect. Wu, according to his past experience, the system wouldn’t give him a task he couldn’t complete. Therefore… Zi Yangpei attacking Lingshan Sect must occur after the Kaiyang gathering! 

With this realization, Qin Kaiyi finally let out a sigh of relief. He didn’t want to see Qing Xuzi’s grief as he watched countless disciples fall on the battlefield. He even more so didn’t want to let Qing Xuzi fail his tribulations because of this reason… 

But Qin Kaiyi had forgotten a very cruel fact. According to the current circumstances, what hurt Qing Xuzi the most was clearly this “demonic cultivator” who had possessed his beloved disciple’s body. 

Wei He stood to the side and watched Qin Kaiyi’s expression change a few times. He restrained himself but in the end couldn’t hold back and reached out a finger to poke Qin Kaiyi. 

“What are you doing?” Qin Kaiyi looked at Wei He in bewilderment.

“Did you offend the Lingshan Sect?” Wei He touched his nose and dryly coughed.

“Why do you ask?” Qin Kaiyi looked at Wei He strangely.

“… Look at their expressions.” Wei He sighed with feeling at Qin Kaiyi’s nerve.

Qin Kaiyi heard this and turned his face, discovering that it really was as Wei He said. Of the Lingshan Sect disciples assembled under Shen Feixiao’s lead, not one of them didn’t look at him like he had killed their dad. Wu… actually compared to that group, Shen Feixiao’s gaze at Qin Kaiyi was super friendly… 

“Ah, aren’t I a demonic cultivator? They all think that I possessed Qin Shi’s body,” he said these universally shocking words and then casually continued, “their expressions count as normal…”

“… Why don’t you explain it?” Wei He’s face was very distorted. “Do you know…” How serious possession is, and that if the cultivation world found out that you are a demonic cultivator possessing another body, how you would be chased to be killed?

Pity that Wei He didn’t finish his sentence before he was interrupted by a sudden thunderous sound: “Thank you all for participating in this Kaiyang gathering and bestowing us with honor. Without further ado, the rules have been announced. Then I declare that the competition has officially started. To reiterate, please do not take actions to harm your opponent’s life. If this is discovered, without exception, you will be driven out of the competition.” 

“… When were the rules of the game announced?” Qin Kaiyi’s mouth twitched and he looked at Wei He.

“Did you not receive the paper crane?” Wei He looked at Qin Kaiyi very innocently. “It’s the one in my hand.”

“… Why didn’t I?” Qin Kaiyi’s face was almost covered in blood. 

“Ah, probably because you are going to hide, so things like the rules aren’t useful to you,” Wei He earnestly teased Qin Kaiyi.

“…” Qin Kaiyi’s face told Wei He that he didn’t think this joke was funny at all. 

Then the game just bafflingly started. Qin Kaiyi, who didn’t know the rules at all, stood beside Wei He like a pillar. Only when the people around him were almost gone, he realized suddenly, “… the Lingshan Sect disciples have such scary expressions. They’re still not going?”

“I have told you that possession is a very serious matter.” Wei He took it as a matter of course. “If my apprentice were possessed, I would flay the skin of the demonic cultivator who dares to possess him.”

“When did you tell me it was serious!” Qin Kaiyi pointed out angrily, “You didn’t tell me anything!”

“… Eh?” Wei He was stunned, and then immediately came back to himself. It seemed he really hadn’t said so, he’d just said it for himself to hear… 囧 how can an unreliable me save an unreliable you…

However, before Qin Kaiyi could conclude this baffling conversation, some people in the Lingshan Sect couldn’t restrain themselves. Liu Ling’er, who still had that same graceful bearing after the years he hadn’t seen her, jumped out from the crowd.  She hoarsely shouted, “You demonic ghost possessor!!! Return my shixiong’s body to me! “

“…” When did Qin Shi’s body belong to you, Qin Kaiyi secretly ridiculed. He gave a demonically charming smile. “Hmph, I didn’t expect to meet people from the Lingshan Sect here today. You want Qin Shi’s body? Then take it yourself!”

Undoubtedly imperious, Qin Kaiyi secretly applauded himself. I haven’t spoken the villain’s lines so straightforwardly for a long time!

“You!!!” Liu Ling’er did not expect Qin Kaiyi to be so… shameless? She was almost enraged to tears. 

“Since daoist friend has said as much, then let me bring Qin’er’s body back.” Qing Xuzi’s words instantly sent Qin Kaiyi from heaven to hell.

“… Are you sure you want to fight me?” Qin Kaiyi said stubbornly, “This is Qin Shi’s body; his consciousness has not disappeared. If you kill me, don’t think of ever seeing your apprentice again.”

“You!” Not expecting the person in front of him to be so despicable, Qing Xuzi seethed with anger (T/N: lit. hair stood up in anger and tipped off his hat). 

“Shifu.” Shen Feixiao heard this and gave Qin Kaiyi a deep look, then turned around and whispered in Qing Xuzi’s ear. Qin Kaiyi couldn’t hear what he said at all. 

It wasn’t clear what Shen Feixiao said to appease Qing Xuzi, but the old man who had smoke coming from his head from rage calmed down. He glared coldly at Qin Kaiyi and turned away. The way he looked at Qin Kaiyi like he was a hated enemy filled his heart with bitter pain for a moment. 

“It’s over?” Wei He, who was watching the show, blinked. “Aren’t you going to find a place to hide?”

“…” Can you let me be sad for a while? Qin Kaiyi gave Wei He a dissatisfied glance. “How do you feel about this person, Shen Feixiao?”

“This person…” Wei He touched his chin again. “I am not interested in people who are taller than me.”

“…” Am I asking you this??? Qin Kaiyi was about to give Wei He’s head a smack, when he suddenly realized something: “Eh… how come I just realized I’m taller than you.”

“What?” Wei He froze. “This is impossible!”

“Really!” Qin Kaiyi was pleasantly surprised. “I just found out ai!”

“This is impossible!!!” Wei He shouted himself hoarse, “Don’t lie to me!!!”

“Good boy.” (T/N: 乖 = obedient. Affectionate term of endearment for young children). Qin Kaiyi pet Wei He’s head to appease his almost collapsed mental state. “Let’s go find a place to hide first and then discuss this issue.”

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R:DSAT Chapter 156: A-Chou

(T/N reminder: “Chou” means “ugly.” “A-” is put before names as a term of endearment or familiarity, and is pronounced “ah.”)

(T/N Reminder: please read the warning tags on novelupdates before proceeding!) 

    A-Chou sat still. He had just helped the brothel in front of him unclog their sewer and toilet, earning a few copper coins. He was thinking about buying something to eat, and had no interest in the boss beckoning him. 

    “Even A-Chou won’t look at your dirty man!” The onlookers heckled again. 

    The boss had embarrassed himself, and glanced at two of the compound’s guards. 

    A guard understood tacitly and kicked the criminal slave on the ground. “Are you dead?” 

    The guilty slave suffered the blow and choked, then coughed twice. He tried to kneel up to crawl from the snow, but had no strength. After struggling a few times, his body could not move. 

    “It’s all rotten underneath,” someone saw behind the criminal slave’s lower body and said with disgust. 

    “A-Chou is rotten too,” someone else replied, “aren’t these two just right for each other, neither disgusting the other?”

    Everyone laughed heartily. A-Chou was just a beggar, and this criminal slave did not even count as a human being. When humans faced these two, the deep-rooted unkindness in their nature would rear its head. These two were not of the same species, so there was no need to care. 

    “Playing dead!” The guard kicked the criminal slave several times in succession towards A-Chou’s direction. 

    The guilty slave vomited blood out of his mouth again and still said nothing. He allowed the two guards to kick him as if he were a broken sack on the ground. 

    Faint tracks of blood appeared in the snow; some people roared with laughter, some shouted abuse, and some soft-hearted ones finally couldn’t look anymore and turned to leave.

    “Look at yourself!” The boss stopped the two guards and said to the criminal slave, “If you die not even ghosts would want to be your neighbor! Even if you were hacked to pieces you still couldn’t become clean, can you still count as a human?”

    “This slave is actually a person?” someone shouted. “How come I can’t see it?”

    Several spat on the criminal slave, but the criminal slave did not react.

    “Shut him in a dog cage,” the boss said to the guards. “Now only my dogs are willing to touch him.”

    The criminal slave dazedly let the guards grab his hair and drag him into the Pleasure Compound. His face tilted in the direction of the beggar named A-Chou, and his gaze held a trace of pleading but then immediately again fell into numbness. He didn’t know why, but after dragging him away a few steps, the guards loosened their grip and stopped walking. 

    “A-Chou, do you want this criminal slave?”

    The guilty slave heard someone talking. He turned his head slightly, and saw a pair of feet in straw sandals with their toes exposed in the front and heels exposed in the back, frostbitten and leaking yellow liquid. 

    “If you want him, I will send him to you to play with for a few days,” the boss said.

    A-Chou nodded to the boss. He did not drag the criminal slave away, instead carrying him up. 

    “A-Chou,” said a little rogue who idled away his life in the red-light district, “this person isn’t even a dog, you really don’t find it dirty!” 

    A-Chou lowered his head. The arms he held the guilty slave with were a bit strained, and his feet were not too agile either. He half-dragged him away on the snowy ground. The guilty slave smelled the scent of herbal medicine on A-Chou’s body. This smell had caused that entire body to fester, and that face had rotted to the point that it was impossible to discern its original appearance. A-Chou’s smell was not actually unpleasant; it was at least more bearable than the guilty slave’s own odor. 

    “Send it back to me after playing for a few days,” the boss shouted from behind them.

    The onlookers let loose another great wave of laughter.

    A-Chou expended great effort to carry the guilty slave along the long street of the red-light district, until they reached a back alley–or at least, what seemed to be a back alley. This alley was nestled between two pleasure houses, so narrow that two people could not walk side-by-side within it. A-Chou pressed his body against the walls to enter. At the end of this alley, there was a half-collapsed, decrepit little house. The half left of its grass roof propped on its earth walls allowed people to deceive themselves that this house could still cover its inhabitant for one more period of wind and rain. 

    The criminal slave sat on a pile of rice straw, only wearing a single unlined garment. Wind swept in from all sides of the room, but he was so frozen cold that he was not aware. He absentmindedly stared at A-Chou, who stood before him. 

    A-Chou also looked at the criminal slave. His throat had already been poisoned to festering, and he could not speak, only gesturing to the guilty slave with his hands. 

    The guilty slave couldn’t understand A-Chou’s hand gestures, but he already began to take off the remaining clothes hanging on him.

    A-Chou hurriedly waved his hands at the criminal slave, while pulling the half-shed clothes back onto the criminal slave’s body. 

    The remaining eye of the criminal slave looked at A-Chou indifferently.

    A-Chou turned around and left. A short time later, he carried some dried branches in and started a fire. 

    The criminal slave sat beside the fire and felt some warmth on his body, but familiar pain quickly attacked his entirety and clung to his bones like maggots, penetrating his viscera.

    A-Chou saw the criminal slave curled in on himself in the straw and gestured to him again, then left.

    The guilty slave shrunk his body into a ball. Being able to lie down like this could count as one of his best days. If he could stay like this until he died that would be good. He actually could not live for much longer. It was only that he did not know whether he would end up like the boss said, with no ghosts willing to be his neighbors. Then could he find a place to stay that did not even have ghosts? 

    When A-Chou came back with two buns, it was already early evening. The red-light district had hung its lanterns, and the sounds of music and dance from the pleasure houses on either side rose and fell in succession, echoing. The fire A-Chou made with dry branches already burned out, and the guilty slave still curled in on himself like a fetus in its mother’s womb. A-Chou set the buns in his hands down and went out to fetch the remaining firewood. He rekindled the fire in the broken house, bringing with him a bit of warmth. 

    The criminal slave was pushed awake by A-Chou. When he opened his eyes, he saw the roasted bun that A-Chou handed to him. He raised his head and looked up at A-Chou in disbelief. Is this for him to eat?

    A-Chou stuffed the bun into the hands of the criminal slave. A clay pot missing part of its body sat on a frame atop the fire, stewing some chicken and duck bones A-Chou had picked up. A-Chou used a branch to stir the pot, and a meaty aroma drifted out. 

    The criminal slave opened his mouth, but couldn’t bite into the bun. 

    A-Chou brought the soup to a boil and poured a little in the lid of the pot. He took the bun from the criminal slave’s hand and dipped it in the soup until it softened, and then fed it to him. Late at night, the dead branches burned out. The two of them burrowed into the pile of possibly decades-old moldy rice straw.

    The criminal slave stayed here like this with A-Chou. The two did not speak with each other, but they had a mutual understanding. A-Chou went out to find food, and the criminal slave could not walk, so he crawled out of the broken house and went to pick up anything that could kindle fire. A-Chou knew that the criminal slave feared cold, and would heat bricks in the fire and wrap them in rags for the slave to warm himself with. The criminal slave would also apply medicine on A-Chou. A-Chou carried with him medicine that could slow the pace of his festering. The criminal slave did not feel the medicine had use, but he saw that after its application the rotten yellow liquid that always leaked from A-Chou’s body would stop for a moment. Thus the criminal slave took applying medicine to A-Chou every day very seriously. 

    The criminal slave and A-Chou spent ten days together like this. They both worried that the boss of the Pleasure Compound would find them, but the boss didn’t come. They lived together in this broken house, which completely collapsed after one more snowfall. 

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When will this arc end so translator can stop suffering?? I want to read about Long Xuan getting his face slapped, not about festering butts and misery! hElp

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvT3ujMqn8o&list=PL3c5fklVB02MAdgBi0Cm1Ez5LzrZ-Qk4g&index=239 listened to this on loop the whole chapter to lighten the mood and remind me that this is just proof of LW x WL’s fated love and not pointless endless suffering. I wasn’t sure about Wei Lan as a love interest at first, but I’ve completely bought in now

R:DSAT Chapter 155: Criminal Slave

(T/N Reminder: please read the warning tags on novelupdates before proceeding!) 

    Luo Wei fainting sent the Luo residence into chaos. 

    Some people from the official’s residence went astride horses, galloping towards the palace in a rush to request Imperial Physician Wei’s presence. 

    The doctor at the closest hospital was also invited over by the senior official’s people. 

    “Save him, wake him first!” Luo Zhi Qiu anxiously said to the doctor. Luo Wei’s unconscious state drove Luo Zhi Qiu to panic, afraid that Luo Wei would not wake again, but also thinking that his child would not just leave like this. 

    The doctor pricked in a few needles. “A-Chou,” Luo Wei’s eyes were still closed, but he let out a noise. (T/N: “chou” means ugly. “A-,” pronounced “ah,” is a term of endearment placed before names.)

    “Wei Er!” Luo Zhi Qiu anxiously shouted at Wei Er. 

    “A-Chou,” Luo Wei’s voice was low and hoarse, and his hands raised as if to grasp something in the air.

    “A-Chou.” Luo Zhi Qiu asked Wei Lan who stood at his side, “Who is A-Chou?”

    Wei Lan shook his head. At this moment, his complexion wasn’t much better than Luo Wei’s. Luo Wei had suddenly fainted, almost taking Wei Lan’s life with him.

    “Who is A-Chou?” Luo Zhi Qiu loudly asked the people inside and outside of the room.

    Several stewards outside the room looked at each other and shook their heads. Finally, the head steward faced the inside of the room, saying, “Senior official, there is no one called A-Chou in the residence.” 

    “Young master?” Wei Lan grabbed Luo Wei’s hands as they frantically clawed everywhere. “Young master!” He shouted at Luo Wei repeatedly.

    Luo Wei’s hand grabbed Wei Lan’s hand, and gripped it so hard that Wei Lan felt pain.

    The doctor’s expression was grave. The movements of his hands stopped, and he built up his courage to tell Luo Zhi Qiu that Luo Wei’s situation was not good. 

    Fu Hua and Xu Yue Miao had just entered the inner room and heard the doctor’s words. Fu Hua’s legs became soft on the spot and she could not stand. While Xu Yue Miao was supporting Fu Hua, she shed tears. Luo Wei had seemed perfectly fine, and now it was said he was no good; was it real? 

    “Whatever the case, save him first,” Xie Yu said to the doctor. “You can’t just stand here.”

    The doctor replied, “The young master seems to have been caught by a nightmare, this humble one can only try his best.”

    Luo Zhi Qiu was filled with anxiety wondering why Imperial Physician Wei hadn’t arrived yet. He had to endure the panic in his heart and say to the doctor, “You try your best, I am not a person without reason.”

    After half a stick of incense’s time (T/N: around 5-10 minutes), Imperial Physician Wei arrived while gasping for breath, followed by several other imperial physicians. 

    No one doubted that Luo Wei’s illness this time was caused by Wei Lan’s painting. After a burst of rushing and muddling about, no one wondered again about who this “A-Chou” was. 

    Luo Wei just refused to let go of Wei Lan’s hand. Luo Zhi Qiu and the others had no choice but to let Wei Lan stand beside Luo Wei’s bed, and this was also exactly what Wei Lan wanted. He only looked at Luo Wei. He didn’t care about the people and things that had caused him suffering, and he didn’t want to care. If only the person in front of him lived on, he would be satisfied at heart. 

    Who was A-Chou? Even if Luo Wei woke up, he would not tell anyone who A-Chou was.

    This man, together with those unbearable events of the previous life, and even Long Xuan’s huge coffin, were hidden in the depths of Luo Wei’s heart. He did not think of them, but they continued to live in him. They followed him like his shadow, never leaving him for a moment. 

    In this world, not only were people ranked in three grades, six grades, nine grades, et cetera, but even cats, dogs, mules, flora, and houses were either cheap or expensive, high or low. The Pleasure Compound, in the capital’s red-light district, had a position that was neither high nor low. It fell short of the best but was better than the worst. The people within the Pleasure Compound were only pitiful existences, but even these pitiful people had to have those above and those below. 

    Winter in the capital that year came very early. It seemed as if autumn had not yet passed when the snow impatiently covered the capital; all sunk into winter overnight. 

    This was the liveliest night in the red-light district. People came and went amidst singing and dancing and the music of the qin; the sounds of pleasure seeking fell incessantly on the ear.

    The Pleasure Compound had always never had the most business, but today there was a large group of people surrounding it. A criminal slave whose clothes did not cover his body was thrown before the gate by the guards of the courtyard. 

    “It’s him.” As soon as people saw the criminal slave, they began to discuss with each other left and right. 

   It was quite funny. The most famous name in this Pleasure Compound wasn’t that of some famous actor, but that of a criminal slave whose lower limbs could not walk anymore. People could not remember the origins of this criminal slave, but only knew that what this slave feared most was this red-light district’s most despicable and most dirty person–or perhaps thing. 

    “Why is an eye blind?” Someone looked at the criminal slave and asked others.

    The criminal slave’s left eye was covered with a dirty cloth whose color was no longer discernible. Only after a closer look could one see that the cloth was soaked with blood, caked blood that had touched ash. 

    “I didn’t expect that he didn’t die yet,” someone looked at the face of this criminal slave with a face full of disgust, “I really don’t know why he is still alive?”

    Half a month ago the Pleasure Compound, which had never been graced by the presence of nobility, welcomed a few dignitaries with extraordinary bearing. At that time, the criminal slave was serving a mastiff dog, his performance also to provide amusement for those bored pleasure-seekers sitting in the lobby eating and drinking. Unexpectedly, the nobleman who headed his group directly walked in front of the cage holding the criminal slave. The boss was so frightened that he hurriedly asked people to pull away the mastiff, and stood at the side not daring to speak. 

    The nobleman looked at the criminal slave for a long while, and suddenly became angry. Without warning, his hand shot out, digging out the left eye of this criminal slave. Everyone, including the group of noblemen who had tagged along, was scared stiff. They couldn’t say whether it was the criminal slave’s miserable scream, or the nobleman’s bloodstained hand, or the criminal slave’s features muddled with blood that frightened them. 

    After the nobleman committed this violent act, he turned around and left without a word. Only a member of his entourage delayed his steps and gave the frightened boss a lot of silver, instructing him to heal the criminal slave and saying that he should not be allowed to just die like this. 

    The boss was a vicious and merciless man, but he had sympathy for the criminal slave. This criminal slave was sent to him by the government. When he came, both his feet had already been destroyed and his hands were badly damaged. The wounds on his body layered upon each other, and one could not find a single unmarred inch upon him. However, there was his beautiful face, prettier than the faces of the attendants within his compound. This criminal slave was also well-behaved, serving any kind of person. If they gave him only brutes who would toy with him, he would obediently submit. What food they gave he would always eat, and if they withheld sustenance he would not seek it. When there were no customers, the slave would shrink in the corridor, motionless, like a dead man. When he endured ferociously painful beatings, only then would he groan once. When he was cursed at, he would lower his head and accept. Since the boss had taken this criminal slave from the government’s dungeons, he hadn’t heard the slave speak a single word. The boss also wanted to be a bit good to this slave, but government orders could not be ignored. This person offended an important official, and could not experience any happy days. The boss could not afford to provoke that official and feared the government, so he could only suppress his sympathetic heart and exert the utmost force to torment this criminal slave. 

    The criminal slave lay on the ground for half a month, and the government sent him high quality medicine just to keep him from dying.

    On this day, the boss came to change the slave’s medicine and asked the slave with good intentions, “Who did you offend after all? This person wants you to live and suffer, and won’t even let you die.”

    For the first time, the criminal slave actually lost his temper. He waved a hand and knocked over the medicine bowl the boss was holding.

    The boss was annoyed, thinking that the criminal slave was unable to recognize others’ good intentions. He immediately called people over to drag the criminal slave out to the street.

    “This person doesn’t need money today, anyone who wants to play with him can play,” the boss said to the onlookers standing at the gate.

    “Such a dirty person. We’re afraid to get sick!” someone loudly exclaimed.

    Amid the guffawing sounds of laughter, the criminal slave lay curled up on his side in the snow. He didn’t try to cover his body, which was exposed for all at the scene to see. He had long ago lost his sense of shame. 

    “Let A-Chou come!” someone shouted at this moment.

    Everyone turned around. At the foot of the wall situated outside of the crowd, a beggar sat. His whole body festered, and none dared to come close to him. He came to the red-light district a few days ago to beg. This beggar could not speak. Everyone called him A-Chou. 

    “Come here,” the boss beckoned to the beggar called A-Chou, pointing at the criminal slave on the snow. “This person is yours to play with for a few days!”

Translating the angst-riddled flashbacks is really tough. When I’m only reading I can flash past those events, but when translating I have to ponder over the words a bit more. I stopped in the middle of this chapter multiple times.

Imagine that unimaginable pain and humiliation. It truly takes a protagonist to come out on the other side politically adept and fabulous, girl.

R:DSAT Chapter 154: Meat Bun

    Luo Wei returned to the estate and heard the steward say that Fu Hua was in Luo Ze’s room while Luo Zhi Qiu was talking with Xie Yu in the study room.

    “How is my second brother today?” Luo Wei asked the steward. 

    “The second young master didn’t wake up,” the steward replied. “The imperial physician came from the palace again to treat the second young master, and he wrote a prescription. The second young master has already taken the medicine.”

    Luo Wei nodded and went to Luo Zhi Qiu’s study.

    The steward said from behind him, “Third young master, people came from the Xiao Yi Apothecary. They said they are shadow guards rescued by the young master. There are five total waiting in the young master’s courtyard.” 

    Wei Lan wanted to see his compatriots from the Qi Lin Villa, but worried about leaving Luo Wei alone.

    “Go and see them first Lan,” Luo Wei smiled and said to Wei Lan. “I’m in my own house surrounded by stewards, but you’re still afraid that something will happen? I’ll go see my father and come back quickly.”

    “Yes ah, the third young master has us to accompany him,” the steward also said from the side.

    “And me,” Qi Zi also patted his own chest, “Big brother Wei, please rest assured and go.”

    Wei Lan then went to Luo Wei’s courtyard.

    Luo Zhi Qiu was conversing with Xie Yu. When Luo Wei walked in, he asked the steward to add more charcoal to the furnace in his study.

    “Your complexion really doesn’t look good.” Xie Yu looked at Luo Wei, who sat beside him. “Don’t run out anymore.”

    “I went to the palace to beg forgiveness,” Luo Wei said, “of course I have to go while I look pitiful.”

    Luo Zhi Qiu asked, “His Majesty forgave you?”

    “He said it was just this once,” Luo Wei replied. “Father, big brother Xie Yu, seems that this trial has passed.”

    Xie Yu let out a sigh of relief. “Your Majesty also sent an imperial physician to treat the second brother’s wounds. It seems that he will not punish second brother anymore. I think this matter is over.”

    Luo Zhi Qiu only fretfully looked at Luo Wei, “Don’t mention it again now that this is over. Wei Er you just recover well at home for your father. Again, you don’t need to get involved with outside matters for the time being.” 

    How could Luo Wei be someone who could peacefully recover at home? He nodded in agreement, but immediately asked, “Have father and the Crown Prince discussed the matter of the Second Prince going to Yue Province?”

    Luo Wei’s arteries had been damaged and he couldn’t afford overexcitement. Therefore, Luo Zhi Qiu dared not tell Luo Wei about the conversation he had with Long Yu in the Western Mountains. “Let’s play it by ear and first see what the Second Highness intends to do,” Luo Zhi Qiu replied. 

    “His Majesty promised to let Chen Tu Ye escort the Second Prince to Yue Province,” Luo Wei reported. “Playing it by ear”–this phrase told Luo Wei that they had no plan. 

    Xie Yu immediately said, “This can safeguard the Second Prince on the road, but what about after his arrival at Yue Province?”

    “I haven’t figured it out yet,” Luo Wei answered honestly.

    “This is difficult to handle,” Xie Yu said, “maybe Official Qiu has a way.”

    Luo Wei replied, “It depends on how bold Official Qiu is.”

    Luo Zhi Qiu and Xie Yu listened to Luo Wei’s ominous words and turned it over in their minds. For a long time, no one in the study spoke.

    “Wei Er!” After Luo Zhi Qiu stewed in his thoughts, he asked Luo Wei with shock, “You have some considerations for the Second Prince?”

    Luo Wei thought it was strange that Luo Zhi Qiu was so surprised. “It’s nothing, I’m just discussing something on its own merits. What considerations does father speak of?” 

    Luo Zhiqiu coughed twice and said, “Go rest, let’s talk about the situation in Yue Province another day. It will take some time for His Second Highness to leave the capital and go to Yue Province. Wei Er you don’t have to trouble yourself and think too much, father has a plan.” 

    Luo Wei wanted to ask what his father planned, when he heard Xie Yu speak, “Yun Qi, things are not urgent right now. You go to rest first, I will have a meal with teacher. Official Qiu isn’t someone easy to work with. Let’s first observe his strategy.” 

    Luo Wei sat on the soft sedan with a heavy heart, carried by servants of the Official’s residence. He returned to his courtyard. Luo Zhi Qiu’s attitude seemed abnormal to Luo Wei. Did the Crown Prince say something? Luo Wei pondered, but couldn’t grasp a conclusion. 

    There were two big snowmen piled up in Luo Wei’s courtyard, entirely constructed by Xiao Xiao and servants he had brought over. 

    “Young master,” Xiao Xiao saw Luo Wei coming in and ran over in excitement, “look at these snowmen!”

    Luo Wei glanced at the two snowmen standing side by side and said, “You all are truly idle.”

    Xiao Xiao’s smile stiffened, “Young master doesn’t like it?”

    “I like it,” Luo Wei got out of the soft sedan and responded without thinking too much. He saw Luo You’s wet nurse standing outside the veranda and asked Xiao Xiao, “Luo You is here?” 

    “The little young master of the house has been here for a while,” Xiao Xiao spoke from behind Luo Wei. “He’s sticking to big brother Wei and horsing around, and he’s now in big bro Wei’s room.” 

    “Third young master.” The wet nurse saw Luo Wei walk towards the veranda and hurriedly bent her knee to pay courtesies. 

    “It’s cold here,” Luo Wei said. “Wait in the side room, I’ll go see that little thing.”

    The wet nurse agreed to take two little maids to the side room in the courtyard to warm up.

    As soon as Luo Wei pushed open the door to Wei Lan’s room, Luo You’s laughter rang out. Who knew what the little guy was giddy over, his laughter joyous. “You Er,” Luo Wei shouted at the entrance.

    “The young master is back,” Wei Lan moved much faster than Luo You. Luo Wei’s voice hadn’t faded yet when Wei Lan arrived at the door. “Come in quickly,” Wei Lan said, “It’s cold outside.”

    Luo Wei held a hand warmer in his hand. He touched Wei Lan’s hand and said, “It’s not cold, my hand is even sweating.”

    “Uncle!” Luo You pounced.

    Luo Wei hugged Luo You when he threw himself into his arms, and he lightly scritched Luo You’s little nose. “I heard you laugh before I entered the door. What are you so happy about?”

    “Young master,” the other five people in the room came towards Luo Wei, each kneeling on one knee upon the ground.

    “Hurry and get up,” Luo Wei immediately said, “you don’t have to pay me such grand courtesies. Lan, hurry and help them up.” 

    “Get up,” Wei Lan said from the side, “Let’s go in and talk.”

    Qi Zi brought everyone inside and added a few charcoal furnaces to Wei Lan’s room before retreating.

    Luo You didn’t wait for Wei Lan and the shadow guards to talk, pointing to a few pieces of drawing paper on the table and saying to Luo Wei, “Uncle, they all can draw, look.”

    Luo Wei picked up a piece of drawing paper. Someone had painted a camellia in black ink upon the paper, and the word “nineteen” was written beside the flower. Luo Wei looked at the other drawing papers. A scarlet kaffir lily, a pot, a spoon, and a little round chick–each had a number written under it. “What is this? You all know how to paint?”

    “Uncle, these sirs also taught You Er to paint today,” Luo You clarified.

    “These are our codes when we get in contact. We don’t recognize any words other than our own codes.”

    Luo Wei looked at these paintings and said, “Then nineteen is the camellia, twenty-one is the scarlet kaffir lily, thirty-one is an iron pot, thirty-three is a spoon, and forty-two is a chick, am I right?”

    The five shadow guards nodded; they all seemed restrained in front of Luo Wei.

    “Then Lan, what is yours?” Luo Wei asked curiously.

    Wei Lan said, “Mine is not very good.”

    “Draw and let’s see,” Luo Wei replied. “Don’t tell me that you’re a pig.” 

    Wei Lan lifted a pen and drew a few strokes on blank drawing paper.

    “It’s a meat bun!” Luo You clapped his small hands and smiled.

    It was a steaming meat bun with a bite taken out of it, revealing its meaty insides. The word “twenty-nine” lay beside it, carefully and neatly written.  

    Luo Wei saw this picture, looking as if something had taken his soul. How could it be him? Luo Wei looked at Wei Lan in astonishment.

    “Young Master?!” Wei Lan stepped forward and hugged Luo Wei. Luo Wei had already passed out. 

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