NETS - Chapter 34 - Covering Traces

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Lin Sheng shouted so loud that he made himself dizzy. Spirit Reduction Powder had two uses. Externally, it could isolate the connection between a cultivator and the spiritual energy in the environment; internally, it temporarily weakened the power in a cultivator’s bloodline, his arcane energy and cultivation base.

But of course, such a despicable powder only affected Blood Refining Realm cultivators. Unfortunately, Lin Sheng happened to be in the effective range!

A black flying saber cut through the rain, like a specter suddenly appearing from the darkness. It jabbed straight toward Lin Sheng’s chest. The cultivator gave a loud battle cry, cast out a mid-grade flying sword and parried the flying saber far away.

But just as Lin Sheng blocked the attack, another flying sword was already halfway to Lin Sheng’s neck. Lin Sheng snorted and a handkerchief suddenly unfolded in front of him. The handkerchief wrapped around the flying sword and directed it elsewhere—the handkerchief was another mid-grade mystic instrument.

Under the powder’s effects, Lin Sheng’s arcane energy dwindled away and he could no longer cast his two mid-grade mystic instruments. It was at this moment that a cold wind surged from behind his head, and Lin Sheng, who had no time to react, was finally knocked out into the dark abyss of unconsciousness.

His last thought before blacking out was that whoever had ambushed him must be at Peak Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm—at the very least—since they could cast three mystic instruments all at once.

Little did he know, Lu Ping had actually casted a fourth mystic instrument—the jade bottle that was hovering above ground sprinkling the Spirit Reduction Powder into the air. He also casted a spell controlling the breeze to blow toward him!

Lu Ping fought hard to suppress the excitement in his heart. He expressionlessly cast a spell to disguise his face, Moving cautiously, he seized Lin Sheng’s interspatial pouch and the interspatial pouch of spirit stones.

Then, he cast the jade bottle and poured a few mouthfuls of Spirit Reduction Powder into Lin Sheng’s mouth. This way, he could ensure that Lin Sheng would only wake up the following afternoon, and then he would have to spend another day to fully recover his strength.

Lu Ping didn’t even inspect the contents in the interspatial pouches and just directly transferred everything into his own interspatial pouch. Then, he immediately destroyed both pouches on the spot.

Moving ahead, he saw several miners waiting at the entrance of the mine. He threatened them to hand over the spirit stones they mined for the past ten days and then checked everywhere on the island. There were several spirit paddy fields on the island, adding up to the size of one-acre—he plundered all the spirit rice he could find.

After that, he searched through Lin Sheng’s cultivation room and found a precious treasure—a low-grade Spirit Gathering Putuan. The putuan was actually the keystone of an array formation that had the effect of gathering spiritual energy in the environment. This would help cultivators in speeding up their cultivation progress.

Lu Ping wouldn’t exchange this low-grade putuan even for a high-grade mystic instrument! Seeing the putuan, Lu Ping couldn’t help thinking that Lin Sheng sure was wealthy. Regaining his composure, Lu Ping wondered if there was anything else valuable that he might have missed.

After leaving Huang Yu Island, Lu Ping cast out his small skiff and headed southwest. After traveling for about a hundred miles, he then turned east towards his Huang Li Island.

But before he turned, Lu Ping suddenly remembered something. He took off the outfit of the Xuan Ling Sect outer disciple and set it on fire. Then, he jumped into the sea and washed himself thoroughly.

After that, he placed everything else he looted into one interspatial pouch except for the spirit stones and hid it under a reef, marking the location. Only then did hurry back to Huang Li Island and continue his daily routine of a cultivator-cum-gardener.

Seven days passed just like that, and Lu Ping finally saw the master immortal who came to investigate the matter.

The master immortal that came was Master Immortal Shang who had assigned Lu Ping and the disciples their missions.

Lu Ping quickly welcomed Master Immortal Shang and asked, “What brings Master Immortal to this junior’s humble abode? Is there anything I can do for you?”

Master Immortal Shang looked at Lu Ping’s calm and curious look. Although the latter’s expressions felt natural, but he still raised his voice and questioned, “Where were you seven days ago?”

Feeling “shocked”, Lu Ping quickly answered with “bafflement”, “Seven days ago? This junior has been on the island this entire time! Uh… um… Master Immortal Shang, have I done something wrong?”

Master Immortal Shang scrutinised Lu Ping’s expression of dismay and pretended to calm down. “Very well. There have been more cases of Xuan Ling Sect’s harassment lately. Have you encountered anything here?”

Lu Ping shook his head. “No, nothing has happened around this junior’s island. I haven’t noticed anything yet.”

Master Immortal Shang tested Lu Ping a few more times but after seeing nothing strange, he finally dismissed his suspicions. “Huang Yu Island’s Lin Sheng, do you know him? Seven days ago, a Xuan Ling Sect disciple knocked him out and robbed him clean. What a shameful idiot!”

This time, Master Immortal Shang wasn’t acting anymore and was really mad. He and the Lin Clan had some relationship which was why he specifically took good care of Lin Sheng, even assigning him to the most profitable island. However, Master Immortal Shang never expected Lin Sheng to make such a big mistake. Not only did he make the Lin Clan a laughingstock, but he also brought shame to Master Immortal Shang.

How could he not even notice the Spirit Reduction Powder blowing straight into his mouth? Why didn’t he get killed? That way, at least his death would have incited the Zhen Ling Sect’s disciples!

Master Immortal Shang thought about the Blood Condensation Realm expert from the Lin Clan who requested him to track down the criminal. However, the rain had covered up too many traces, and six days had passed since the incident happened. He only managed to track down the criminal for a few dozens of miles in the direction of Xuan Ling Sect before all traces disappeared.

Bah, whatever. From now on, I’ll keep my distance from the Lin Clan so I don’t end up a laughingstock like them, Master Immortal Shang recalled the recent weird atmosphere on Xuan Qi Island and gritted his teeth in exasperation.

Only Enlightened Master Qu who had no scruples burst out laughing when he learned about the incident. His blaring laughter lasted for almost ten minutes and reverberated a few dozen miles out from Xuan Qi Island.

Lu Ping didn’t know about the many thoughts going inside Master Immortal Shang’s mind. He just pretended to be shocked and stuttered, “Rob… rob?”

Master Immortal Shang saw the strange look on Lu Ping’s face and felt even more embarrassed. Indeed, ten out of ten of these incidents would have ended with the victim’s death. But this time, the poor victim was just robbed and not killed, although it might have been better if he had died instead.

In the end, Master Immortal Shang offhandedly reminded Lu Ping to stay cautious and remain vigilant for Xuan Ling Sect’s activities before leaving in a hurry.

Lu Ping sensed from the Parent-Children Warning Charms that Master Immortal Shang had finally left—he couldn’t contain himself anymore and burst out laughing. Although his laughter didn’t ring out as much as Enlightened Master Qu’s, it still left the nearby islanders feeling bewildered.

Three months later, it was time for their three-day holiday again. Lu Ping returned to Xuan Qi Island and finally learned the full story. As he expected, Lin Sheng woke up on the second day and recovered his arcane energy on the third day. However, because Lu Ping stole his entire fortune without leaving a single spirit stone behind for him, Lin Sheng had no mystic instruments or charms that could help him travel despite being in the Ninth Layer Blood Refining Realm!

With his prowess, he could still cast spells and travel by foot on the surface of the water, but he was in the middle of the sea. This meant traversing more than two hundred miles on seawater from Huang Yu Island to Xuan Qi Island. Walking on water was fine for crossing a river, but it was ridiculous to use this method to cross the sea.

Lin Sheng, who was anxious to report the incident to Xuan Qi Island, had no choice but to order the fishermen on the island to take him to Xuan Qi Island in a fishing boat. But as the saying goes, “Misfortunes never come singly”. A seasonal storm struck the following days. The fishing boat lost its direction in the dark night and drifted along with the waves for four days.

Huang Yu Island scheduled handover of its island’s resources was three days overdue, and no word was sent to Xuan Qi Island—only then did they realize that something must have happened to Huang Yu Island.

So they sent a Blood Condensation Realm master immortal to investigate. The master immortal returned the next day with Lin Sheng who had been drifting at sea for four days, along with a story that made them laugh and feel infuriated at the same time.

After that, the rest of the matter was just as Lu Ping had guessed. The incident couldn’t be kept secret and Lin Sheng became a joke to the entire Xuan Qi Island. Following the incident, the Lin Clan was furious and sent a Blood Condensation Realm expert and Master Immortal Shang to investigate the incident.

They tried to track down the criminal but the investigation ended after they ran out of clues. Eventually, the incident was concluded as part of Xuan Ling Sect’s harassment activities and the case was ended with nothing definite.

RD's Notes:

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Written by SleepingAutumn. Translated by RD. Edited by Milkbiscuit.