Written by Tinalynge & Blue Jay
Edited by ONI_Ghost
Beta read by OEE
Luo Xiao was left alone for the first time in a few days, and he decided to spend the time straightening out his thoughts.
“Jiang Yao isn’t bad,” he mumbled to himself as he looked at the scar on his arm. “Although I don’t know much about the world of cultivation I can at least guess that the medicine he used must have been top notch.”
“It seems that he really needs an Astral Soul,” he said with a sigh. Somehow he felt conflicted and slightly disappointed.
Jiang Yao had been rough and proud towards him before he found out that he was an Astral Soul. He hadn’t treated him badly, but neither had he been soft and gentle.
In Luo Xiao’s eyes, Jiang Yao had completely changed his behavior when he found out that he had an Astral Soul. So although he was now gentle towards him, it was merely because he was useful.
The realization that he was all alone in the world cause Luo Xiao’s heart to tighten. He dragged his legs up under his chin and hugged them with his arms.
He felt so hopeless that he didn’t know what to do. The thought that Jiang Yao only wanted him for the sake of his Astral Soul struck home and made him realize that he wasn’t liked for who he was.
“It’s fine,” Luo Xiao tried to convince himself that it didn’t matter, “I only followed him to get revenge on his Fourth Brother.”
“It’s natural that we take what we can from each other,” he continued to argue to himself, but he still had a hollow feeling inside. “Since when have I become so dependant on Jiang Yao?” He said with another sigh.
After realizing that this older man had become so important to him, Luo Xiao couldn’t help but laugh at himself mockingly, “And here I thought it would be fun to take revenge on Ling Mo by acting like I am Jiang Yao’s lover, but I need to be careful. This is just an act. I cannot gain the impression that he actually cares for me. What he cares for is my soul’s power,” he said.
Luo Xiao hugged his legs tightly when he suddenly stiffened, “Why would I be sad about it just being an act? We are both men. It is only natural to be together with a woman. My father always told me to find a lovely woman one day. He wanted me to get married, settle down, and have a family of my own. Why would I ever think that Jiang Yao is a suitable partner?” he asked himself.
Luo Xiao was aghast, “No more thinking about this,” he said as he, to his horror, noticed that the more he thought about such things, the more tangled and messy his thoughts became.
Luo Xiao decided to cultivate. It was much better to cultivate than to waste his time on messed up topics that he couldn’t do anything about anyway.
Steadying his breath, Luo Xiao finally calmed down as he felt the essence of the heavens and the earth enter his body and be slowly refined into spiritual energy.
Luo Xiao was deeply focused on cultivating. He didn’t hear the door open and someone enter.
Suddenly, a shiver ran through his body, as if he could feel a killing intent being steered towards him.
Jiang Yao promised that no was able to enter, but right now, Ling Mo stood in front of Luo Xiao. His eyes burned with hatred and anger as he reached out his hand and locked them around Luo Xiao’s neck.
His neck was so frail and thin that with just a mere squeeze, he would die, but Ling Mo had been tormented by Jiang Yao and Luo Xiao’s display of intimacy for the last couple of days. For this reason, he wanted to thoroughly humiliate and disgrace Luo Xiao before killing him.
Ling Mo tossed Luo Xiao aside with a flip of his hand, and his body crashed into the wall of the carriage as blood seeped out from the corner of his lips.
Fortunately, the medicinal properties of the pills that had entered his body earlier hadn’t been fully depleted. This was why the wounds within his body were now being healed again.
“I paid these commoners to keep Jiang Yao occupied for a full hour,” Ling Mo said as he grinned viciously at Luo Xiao who had an agonized expression on his face, “I will play with you for half an hour, then I will end your miserable existence.”
“I have to thank his Highness for having made a barrier. This is the perfect alibi. He is unaware that I have a method to sneak past barriers without the creator knowing,” Ling Mo said.
“What is so good about you?” he snorted, “you’re weak! You have no strength to stand against me at all! All you can do is lay there spewing blood while I step on you.”
“I have to admit that your appearance isn’t horrible, but just because you look good doesn’t mean that his Highness should like you!”
“This was my chance to ingratiate myself with his Highness! I could’ve soared in the Tiansong court; I could have become someone!”
“Now his Highness knows that I have tried to kill you, and he will never like me!” Ling Mo said, his face was twisted and uglier than ever before.
“Since I cannot win his favor, I can at least kill you and take revenge! Seeing you all lovely and intimate with one another is disgusting!”
“Seeing his Highness being soft and gentle is so disgusting! He is known for being a monster! A selfish genius, and now you have changed him!” he said.
Every time Ling Mo spoke, punches and kicks rained down upon Luo Xiao. He covered his face with his arms, but he still felt that he was being beaten black and blue.
Luo Xiao was certain that he would die this time. Jiang Yao was busy, and he had no clue that the barrier had been compromised.
Although he was frightened and in pain, he was also relieved. Now he didn’t have to think about revenge anymore; he could reunite with his father and his friends in the Yellow Spring.
Ling Mo intentionally used just enough strength to torment Luo Xiao, but not enough to kill him. However, suddenly he stopped. His face turned frightened, and he rushed out of the carriage as if fleeing.
Moments later, Jiang Yao entered. He was in a bad mood. His eyes narrowed, and he wanted to throw away all the stuff the caravan had given him, but he couldn’t do so.
When his eyes landed on the chaos that was evident within the carriage, his eyes widened in surprise.
The benches had become shattered wood, the blankets and furs were everywhere, and on the ground, Luo Xiao lay, breathing shallowly.
“What happened?!” Jiang Yao’s words were so loud that they shook the entire caravan, scaring everyone present.
“I’m fine,” Luo Xiao said through gritted teeth. He had bruises all over his body, but none of them were life-threatening. Ling Mo had wanted to torment him, he wanted him to experience excruciating pain but hadn’t intended to kill him just yet.
“Ling Mo!” Jiang Yao spat out the name. His eyes burned with rage, and he was ready to kill him on sight, but Luo Xiao reached out a trembling arm to stop him.
“I am fine,” he said through the pain, “The medicine you gave me earlier is still in my body, and it is healing my wounds.”
“Why are you covering for him?!” Jiang Yao asked with anger in his voice, so much anger that it trembled.
“He is an important person. Otherwise, you would have already gotten rid of him,” Luo Xiao said through his gritted teeth, trying to reason despite the pain he was experiencing.
“If it were easy to manage the aftermath of him being killed, then you would have killed him long ago. Obviously, he is an important person, and I don’t want you to be troubled.”
“Also, I think it might be a better punishment to let him continue on this journey with you and me,” Luo Xiao said almost chuckling, but because of his injuries, he started coughing instead.
“Don’t worry about me. Although it might be slightly troublesome to kill him, I can still handle myself,” Jiang Yao said as he gently lifted Luo Xiao and carried him to the furs and blankets on the ground.
Having said this, Jiang Yao sincerely wished to kill the entire caravan alongside Ling Mo, but he also felt his heart soften when he heard that Luo Xiao was worried about him.
“I won’t leave you alone anymore,” Jiang Yao promised. “If anyone has any thoughts against you then they have to go through me first.”
Luo Xiao felt his heart warm at his words, but right after, he felt cold again. It seemed that being an Astral Soul was truly something special.
Ling Mo didn’t dare show up for the rest of the night; however, the following morning when Jiang Yao and Luo Xiao left the shattered carriage, Ling Mo was waiting for them.
He said nothing but his expression was ugly. Jiang Yao, on the other hand, utterly ignored him, and the caravan people that came towards him were all treated with such killing intent that they couldn’t breathe and so they rushed away.
“Are you comfortable Xiaoxiao?” Jiang Yao asked gently to the young man in his arms, and Luo Xiao nodded his head. He hooked his arms around his neck, but he kept chanting a mantra in his head saying that this handsome devil was only interested in his soul and that he should not get the wrong ideas.
As soon as they set off, the caravan owner heaved a heavy sigh of relief; however, moments after they had disappeared into the distance, a fire started raging from the carriage that Jiang Yao had rented.
A chilling voice sounded out, a voice belonging to Jiang Yao. However, it only said one word, “Retribution.”
The flame was wild and impossible to contain. It spread like wildfire and soon the entire caravan was reduced to a pile of dust. Many lost their lives in the process of trying to suppress it, but in the end, they failed to do so.
Luo Xiao heard the word ‘retribution,’ but he didn’t understand it. Ling Mo, on the other hand, was much more powerful than Luo Xiao and could sense the fluctuations of energy back at the caravan.
His face turned pale, but he had faith in his status amongst Jiang Yao’s family. He knew that no matter what he did, Jiang Yao wouldn’t kill him.
Although he was certain that he would not be killed, he hadn’t expected that Jiang Yao would completely ignore him. So far he had not been friendly towards him, but he had not fully ignored him either.
Now it was as if these two were alone, and Ling Mo was in a world of his own.
Nobody doubted that it was Ling Mo who beat Luo Xiao the previous night, but everyone kept their mouth shut for various reasons.
Ling Mo feared that if he said something, perhaps Jiang Yao really would disregard everything and slay him where he stood.
Luo Xiao didn’t want him to be killed by Jiang Yao as he wanted to kill him himself.
Jiang Yao feared that if he said anything concerning the incident, then he really would kill him.
Like this, they continued forward silently until Ling Mo couldn’t handle the silence.
“I’ll go scout ahead,” he said before he turned into a beam of light and shot forward.