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EIF - Book 03 Chapter 069: That Is Not What I Meant

Ensnaring Performance glared and said, “So what if you gained sentience before me? What’s so incredible about that? You know thousands of pieces, and I don’t? Humph! I don’t need them. I can compose on my own at any time. Furthermore, I have composed many. Had my master not stopped me, I would have used my own piece. No, my songs!”

“A heaven-grade zither does not have the ability to compose. The pieces come from their master or what they heard. Haha! You can compose pieces?” Army Breaker appeared skeptical.

“Are you afraid now?” Ensnaring Performance said cockily.

“Humph! Bring it on, then. Let me hear your piece—I mean, song.” Army Breaker stared at Ensnaring Performance.

Army Breaker showed a sullen expression, but he did not get agitated. Instead, he wanted to test Ensnaring Performance’s skill.

“So be it. Do you think I fear you? Listen well. I’m going to start singing!” Ensnaring Performance snarled.

“Shut up!” Gu Hai shouted immediately.

“Huh? Master?” Ensnaring Performance looked at Gu Hai in confusion.

“You are not to be rude,” Gu Hai scolded.

Granny Qing Hua just died. Gu Hai did not want Ensnaring Performance’s singing to disturb everyone’s mood.

However, Army Breaker thought that Gu Hai was trying to cover for Ensnaring Performance.

“Mister Gu, please don’t stop us. This is a duel between me and Ensnaring Performance. Since he wants to sing, let him sing. I want to see how capable Ensnaring Performance is after you guided him!” Army Breaker shook his head at Gu Hai.

Although Army Breaker spoke politely, his tone was firm, not permitting rejection.

“Indeed. Master, this Army Breaker is too arrogant. I’ll sing him a song and show him how vast the world is. To think that a defeated foe dares to be so cocky? I don’t know what he is so proud of!” Ensnaring Performance immediately piped up.

Gu Hai frowned.

“Mister Gu, please don’t stop us!” Army Breaker insisted with a determined expression.

“In that case, do it where there is no one around. Make sure we cannot hear you.” Gu Hai frowned.

This slightly startled Army Breaker, giving him the impression that Ensnaring Performance’s songs were too powerful and would hurt these treants. This immediately raised his estimation of Ensnaring Performance.

“Don’t worry. I have a Sound Barrier Cage. Ensnaring Performance and I will enter it to have our duel. We will not affect you.” Army Breaker waved, and a huge hut flew out of his sleeve.

The walls of this hut had many ritual arrays glowing with a faint fluorescence carved into them.

“A Sound Barrier Cage?” This slightly surprised Gu Hai.

“That’s right. A Sound Barrier Cage can isolate all sounds from inside and outside. Furthermore, once Ensnaring Performance and I enter, the doors will be sealed for four hours. Only after that will the doors open automatically. More importantly, all the music Dao techniques in there will not cause physical damage. It will just be a clash of artistic conception. Ensnaring Performance and I will just be competing in artistic conception,” Army Breaker said.

“Oh, there won’t be physical damage? So, a music Dao army like earlier will not appear? It will only be piece against piece, music against music?” This surprised Gu Hai.

“That’s right. At our level, artistic conception is sufficient to see who is better,” Army Breaker said.

“Master, just let me do it. Watch as I use my singing to defeat this defeated foe again.” Ensnaring Performance rubbed his palms in anticipation.

Singing?

Gu Hai’s face twitched slightly as he said, “Alright. However, don’t end up breaking down this Sound Barrier Cage when you can no longer carry on.”

“Hahahaha! Mister Gu, rest assured. The Sound Barrier Cage cannot be broken from the inside. Neither Ensnaring Performance nor I can break it. We will need to wait out the full four hours. Don’t worry. I won’t bully Ensnaring Performance too much. We will just take our time competing in music.” A malicious twinkle flashed in Army Breaker’s eyes.

Gu Hai looked at Army Breaker. That is not what I meant!

“Master!” Ensnaring Performance prompted anxiously.

Gu Hai’s face twitched as he looked at Army Breaker and said, “Mister Army Breaker, please do forgive Ensnaring Performance if he does not sing well. There’s no need to hold a grudge over it.”

“You feel that Ensnaring Performance’s singing will be too powerful and will hurt me? Are you pleading for mercy on his behalf so that I won’t pursue it? Hahaha! Mister Gu, aren’t you feeling overconfident?” Some impatience flashed in Army Breaker’s eyes.

“Huh?” This startled Gu Hai again.

I really did not mean that!

“Master, let me squash this vile person’s arrogance,” Ensnaring Performance urged, glowering.

“Mister Gu, don’t stop him. I have already taken out the Sound Barrier Cage, and I can’t put it away now,” Army Breaker said.

After some silence, Gu Hai nodded and said, “Alright. Ensnaring Performance, do be careful. Don’t go overboard.”

“Don’t. Mister Gu, I want Ensnaring Performance to compete with all his might. Otherwise, there is no glory even if I win,” Army Breaker countered immediately.

Gu Hai: “…”

That is really not what I meant!

“Go on, then. Go on.” Gu Hai could no longer be bothered to explain.

“Ensnaring Performance, please!” Army Breaker gestured invitingly.

“Let’s go!” Ensnaring Performance said.

Then, the two entered the Sound Barrier Cage.

Bang!

The door closed, and an hourglass appeared above the door. The sand trickled down slowly. The door would open only four hours later.

Venerable Liu Nian’s eyelids twitched along with Gu Hai’s. Is this Army Breaker seeking trouble? Is Ensnaring Performance going to sing that demonic song of his?

At the side, the sorrowful Long Wanqing and Mu Chenfeng saw the two heaven-grade zithers going in to compete. Their expressions suddenly stiffened, as they foresaw the outcome.

Chu Chen showed a faint sneer. “Do you really think that Ensnaring Performance can defeat Army Breaker? What a joke!”

Everyone looked at Chu Chen with disgust on their face.

Gu Hai looked at Chu Chen and sneered back. “What does it have to do with you whether he wins or not? Where do you think you will stand after I join the duke’s official residence? Ha!”

“What did you say?” Chu Chen looked at Gu Hai coldly.

However, Gu Hai just ignored Chu Chen. Instead, he looked at the treants and said, “Collect all the treants’ corpses. Take care of Granny Qing Hua’s corpse as well. Then, prepare all of them for burial.”

“Yes!” the love flower treants immediately answered.

Although the treants had their dantian broken, they still managed to rush about in all directions, collecting their comrades’ corpses. 

A sorrowful atmosphere spread throughout the Love Flower Valley.

Gu Hai took out some medicinal pills and handed them to Venerable Liu Nian and Mu Chenfeng to consume. However, the two were too severely injured and could not recover that quickly.

The Wood Division disciples also helped to deal with the aftermath.

The Wood Division disciples extinguished the surrounding fires and searched the rubble for love flower treant corpses.

Gu Hai walked around the valley with Long Wanqing.

Chu Chen kept his eye on the two. Nearly three thousand-odd Metal Division disciples also kept watch over the treants and Wood Division disciples.

However, there was nothing to worry about as the treants’ cultivations were all crippled.

“Let’s bury the treants at the seaside. As they look at the vast sea, they will no longer need to be vexed by mundane suffering,” Gu Hai sighed.

“Alright.” Long Wanqing nodded.

Gu Hai called over many Wood Division disciples to where he laid the ritual array. Then, they started digging.

Everyone helped to collect the love flower treant corpses. As the surviving treants did so, they cried in sorrow at seeing their friends and family reduced to piles of rotten wood.

Chu Chen watched coldly from a nearby mountain peak.

The others helped Venerable Liu Nian and Mu Chenfeng over.

When Gu Hai saw Venerable Liu Nian, he gave him a look while Chu Chen’s back was turned. Venerable Liu Nian’s expression changed, and he looked at the nearby ritual array that Gu Hai set up previously.

The foggy ritual array had suppressed the dragons. There was also the Twenty-Eight Line-Pair World Ritual Array here.

Venerable Liu Nian understood from just that one look. He returned the look before pretending to be in incredible pain.

“Hall Master, go and take care of Venerable Liu Nian. The venerable’s injuries are too severe this time. Use your Veritable Essence to help him clear his meridians so that he can recover quickly,” Gu Hai advised Long Wanqing.

Long Wanqing nodded and walked towards Venerable Liu Nian.

Everyone piled up the rotten wood into a small mountain. Two thousand-odd treants stood at the side, crying.

They had dug a large pit, only waiting for Gu Hai’s command to bury all the treants in the pit.

Not far away, Chu Chen and the Metal Division disciples did not notice anything amiss.

Gu Hai kept track of the time. When about four hours had elapsed, he suddenly narrowed his eyes, and he turned to console the treants. “Don’t cry anymore. I will take revenge for Granny Qing Hua. I will remember the person who split her in half. Right now, I am unable to do that. When I join the duke’s official residence, I can take revenge for Granny Qing Hua.”

“Many thanks, Master!” the love flower treants immediately said gratefully.

Not far away, Chu Chen’s eyelids twitched wildly. He smiled coldly and said, “I was the one who split Granny Qing Hua in half, so what? Do you think you can take revenge when you join the duke’s official residence? You want to take revenge on me?”

Gu Hai looked at Chu Chen and smiled back coldly. “What do you think, Division Master Chu?”

“Humph! With your capabilities?” Chu Chen sneered.

“Indeed. My cultivation is not comparable to yours, far from comparable. However, I have advantages over you. I can compose pieces and lay ritual arrays. I can command a music Dao army for the duke and use it in battle. I can lay ritual arrays to fight a vast army. What can Division Master Chu do?” Gu Hai smiled.

“Huh?” Chu Chen raised his eyebrows.

“Division Master Chu is strong? Ha! I believe the duke should have many strong experts under him. You are not the strongest, right? What can you do? Oh, that’s right. You can be a spy. Hahahaha!” Gu Hai said while laughing.

Chu Chen stared at Gu Hai coldly.

“Do you see it now? Despite it being Duke Lu Yang’s first time seeing me, he let me have the wood deity, not you, who was loyal to him. That’s right. Do you remember when the duke said ‘How audacious!’? He was saying that you were being audacious, right? You were audacious for pointing your sword at me. Do you know why?” Gu Hai said with a smile.

The rage in Chu Chen’s eyes intensified.

“It is because the duke thinks that I would become his trusted aide, his right-hand man. I am not replaceable. As for you, you are just a strong spy, a hired thug, a weapon that can be replaced at any time. By daring to point your sword at me, you were offending your superior. Haha! Division Master Chu, we will see when we reach the duke’s official residence,” Gu Hai said with a smile.

Chu Chen’s expression changed. Gu Hai’s tone contained a bone-deep hatred.

We will see when we reach the duke’s official residence? Can this grudge be resolved only with death? Chu Chen’s grip on his sword tightened.

When Gu Hai saw that he managed to induce rage in Chu Chen, some anticipation flashed in his eyes.

DragonInWhite's Notes:

Chapters for October: 07 / 50

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Written by Guan Qi — Watching Chess. Translated by DragonInWhite. Edited by VampireCat.