According to the usual cultivation methods, beginners first had to learn how to draw qi into their bodies, then let the natural qi pass through the meridians of their body to turn it into their own qi. The type of qi they had to absorb varied according to their spirit attributes. For example, Mo Tianliao now had to absorb wood and fire qi and draw both types into his body in order to achieve the first stage of cultivation.
However, in this <Wood Igniting Technique>, there wasn’t any mention of drawing qi into the body. Even as an experienced Demonic Lord, he could only scratch his head in confusion at the instructions.
It wasn’t until someone knocked on his door that Mo Tianliao woke from his daze.
“Shishu, the outer disciples brought your meal over.”
A slender female disciple walked in with a food box. Before Mo Tianliao could speak, she placed it on the table.
There were five stages to cultivation: the Refining, Foundation, Core, Soul and Half-Immortal stages. Those who had reached the Core stage and above could use the Meal Pill to satisfy their bodily needs, while those in the Soul stage and above would not have to eat at all. Thus, most of the disciples in the sect still had to satisfy their hunger. The chore of cooking those meals naturally fell upon those outer sect disciples. However, outer sect disciples couldn’t enter the abodes, so inner sect disciples had to bring the food in.
A slight frown developed on Mo Tianliao’s face and he looked up at the female disciple.
The girl had fine features and a slender figure and could even be considered a rare beauty in the cultivation world. However, the undisguised haughtiness on her face made her seem less attractive.
Suxin was a second-generation disciple with a single fire attribute. Her potential was just a hair’s difference away from being a divine spirit potential. If someone of such calibre could only be a second-generation disciple in Woqing Abode, then how could someone with dual spirit attributes who was already older than sixteen become the direct disciple of Master Qingtong?
“Leave it,” Mo Tianliao stated calmly as the good humour on his face faded away.
It was impossible for him not to notice the disdain in the girl’s face with his hundreds of years of experience as a Demonic Lord. If he had started out at the Thousand Sprouts Abode as a normal inner sect disciple, he would have thought it normal for a direct disciple to scorn him. However, he now held a much higher rank than her. As his junior, her actions were disrespectful towards him.
The calm iciness in Mo Tianliao’s black eyes made Suxin retreat unconsciously. It was only now that she finally took note of Mo Tianliao’s appearance. His features were rather handsome, yet he still retained an air of dominance. Although he was still a mortal right now, his eyes were very piercing. The regal aura around him could be compared to the Sect Master’s… and was possibly even grander!
After getting shocked by her mortal shishu’s display of power, Suxin’s embarrassment slowly turned to rage and she couldn’t help but let out her own power in response. She had not joined the sect for very long, so she had only just reached the Foundation stage. Even so, the power in her soul was enough to force mortals to kneel before her.
Mo Tianliao looked at the girl weirdly. What was she doing, trying to use such a crude method to intimidate her senior? There was nothing to be gained from doing so, except for a fleeting moment of satisfaction…
He jumped off the bed and slowly walked towards the table. It was clear that he wasn’t affected at all by her power. Conversely, it was Suxin who felt like a heavy force was pressing her down and squeezing out the air in her lungs. When Mo Tianliao was just a few steps away, Suxin’s knees gave way and she knelt down hard on the floor.
“Shizhi, what is this for?” Mo Tianliao sat down on the chair naturally. Although he hadn’t started cultivating again, he still retained the soul of an Half-Immortal stage Demonic Lord. How could a mere Foundation stage cultivator withstand his soul’s might?
Fear was now apparent on Suxin’s face, “Shishu, have mercy! This disciple made a mistake!”
After getting the reaction he wanted, Mo Tianliao suddenly felt that it was meaningless to have been so petty with a young girl. He instantly hid his aura again and waved his hand, “I don’t need anyone to serve me when I eat. There’s no need for such formality, shizhi, you’re dismissed.”
With that one sentence, Mo Tianliao had purposely made it seem as if she had kneeled down to beg for the chance to serve him during his meal. Suxin resisted the urge to puke up blood and hurriedly retreated without saying anything else.
We’re sorry for MTLers or people who like using reading mode, but our translations keep getting stolen by aggregators so we’re going to bring back the copy protection. If you need to MTL please retype the gibberish parts.
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“Shizu chose shishu because shishu has the talent for it,” the pale Suxin responded quickly before leaving, refusing to explain any further.
She didn’t dare to reveal anything about facing their shishu’s terrifying soul power. Otherwise, the fact that she had tried to intimidate their shishu would come to light, and she would be punished harshly according to the sect rules.
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There was plenty of qi in the surrounding mountains and the entire Woqing Abode was under the domain of his new master, so there were no dangers around here. After more than three hundred years, Mo Tianliao could finally have a good night’s rest in a soft bed, without worrying about his safety.
Mo Tianliao slept so deeply that the sun was already high in the sky when he finally woke up again.
After breakfast, Mo Tianliao continued studying the <Wood Igniting Technique>, but he could only access the first chapter still.
It seemed like he had to follow the instructions of the first chapter in order to read the next… Mo Tianliao scratched his head and dressed up. He was going out to find someone to talk to and see where the fruit-scented trees might be.
There was no one at the mountain peak. Mo Tianliao glanced at the desolate Qingning Palace and couldn’t resist turning there to have a look. The entrance to the inner hall was still tightly shut, Master was still in closed cultivation.
He couldn’t help but sigh. Even if he couldn’t find an answer to his questions, it would have been nice to admire Master’s beauty. Ever since he had met Master, the good-looking men and women of the sect seemed to lack something now. For example, the looks of the lovely Suxin from yesterday could have earned her a spot amongst his forge workers in his past life. However, now, he could only feel that she looked… ugly.
Mo Tianliao went to the nearby mountain in dejection. There was a platform made of celestite at the top of the mountain, about a hundred feet on each side. A group of disciples dressed in plain colours were now training with swords there.
Their magic weapons shone with silver light, sword qi bursting out from each swing. Mo Tianliao subconsciously came to a halt. This sword technique was exquisite. It looked like the Bird-striking style from the Thousand Suns Sword Manual, except that it had been modified slightly… The style seemed much simpler and much more practical now. Whoever modified it must be a genius!
“Shishu!” The sect member at the front of the group noticed him immediately. It turned out to be the ever-smiling Suheng.
Mo Tianliao nodded in acknowledgement of the greeting. Suheng sheathed his sword and gestured for the rest to do the same, while he quickly walked up to Mo Tianliao and bowed, “Greetings to shishu.”
“Are you leading the others in sword practice?” Mo Tianliao looked at Suheng. He had used his soul’s power to check this shizhi yesterday and Suheng was already at the Core stage, so he shouldn’t be practising such basic techniques. The most likely reason was that he was training the more junior disciples.
“No, we’re doing our morning practice.” Suheng wiped away the sweat on his brow. When he noticed Mo Tianliao’s confusion, he smiled and explained, “All the second-generation disciples of Woqing Abode have to practise their sword techniques here for two hours every morning, regardless of their cultivation levels.”
Mo Tianliao’s surprise showed on his face. His potential had been average in his previous life. He had only made it to the Half-Immortal Stage within three hundred years through hard work and a strong foundation. Every day, without fail, he would practise his spells as well as some physical fighting techniques to strengthen his body. His master was rather exceptional in his way of thinking.
“Is there any type of tree on this mountain that carries the scent of fruits?” Mo Tianliao remembered the reason he had come here and asked.
“Are you going to train, shishu?” Suheng’s eyes were filled with envy. He had heard that his own master, Mo Tianliao’s shixiong, had also practised some mysterious secret technique given by shizu when he had entered the sect. He even knew that the first task was to find some wood with the scent of fruits.
“There are fruit-scented trees growing on the rear mountains where the sun shines. I heard from my master that the trees are about two meters tall and as thin as a baby’s arm. Oh, and that the bark is greenish black.”
There was a barrier set on the rear mountains. The second-generation disciples didn’t have access to that area, so Suheng had never seen that fruit-scented tree before.
When Mo Tianliao heard that his own shixiong had also done this task before, the doubts he had about the technique fell away. He found a knife for chopping firewood and headed off to the rear mountains with excitement.
After passing through the dark bamboo forest behind Qingning Palace and walking up a small slope, the rear mountains were finally in his sight. There were birds flying in the skies around the lush green slopes, so it didn’t seem like there were any barriers set there.
Nothing blocked his way as Mo Tianliao walked over to the mountains, yet the scenery unexpectedly changed right before his eyes; the peaceful-looking green hills were gone and replaced by a grand mountain filled with strange herbs and dense forests!
According to what his shizhi had said… Mo Tianliao walked one round around the sunny slope and quickly found a group of trees with the heavy scent of fruit. He picked up his knife and tried to chop an old, dry-looking branch.
Thud! His knife bent backwards…
Mo Tianliao looked at the knife in his hands, then back at the branch that was only as thick as his thumb, completely speechless. He turned back down the slope and looked for something else that he might be able to use instead. When he found a black iron rock about the size of a hawthorn fruit in the mountain valley below, Mo Tianliao placed the rock on his palm and tried something, “Burn!”
A greenish wisp of woodfire flickered into life on his palm for a brief moment before disappearing again. He kept trying again and again, until he could finally use the woodfire to melt the iron ore in his palm. Once the ore melted, he quickly rubbed the liquid onto his knife, pulling it straight again.
The black iron ore wasn’t any sort of valuable material, but it was at least ten times harder than this ordinary woodcutting knife. With one more chop, he managed to break off a branch of the fruit-scented tree.
Now that he had enough firewood, Mo Tianliao easily hunted down the deer he needed for the next step. He skinned the deer, let out its blood and took care of the organs inside next to a small creek.
A weaponsmith was still a craftsman at heart. If they could carve out exquisite and complicated patterns, then their skills could also be turned towards processing materials.
Mo Tianliao set the deer up on his newly made roasting pit, then snapped his fingers to conjure up a little wisp of woodfire to ignite the fruit-scented firewood. The fresh branches weren’t well-suited for burning, but woodfire was no ordinary fire. The little bit of flame consumed the wood and a large fire roared to life.
Mo Tianliao gaped a little while holding the dry leaves and branches he had been about to add to stoke the fire. He moved the deer carcass higher so that the fire wouldn’t burn it to a crisp.
An inviting scent of fruit drifted up from the roaring fire, slowly sinking into the deer meat. Mo Tianliao checked his jade scroll, but the next chapter still hadn’t appeared, so he set it aside. There was nothing else to do while waiting for the deer to cook, so he picked up the knife again and started carving one of the deer antlers he had cut off earlier.
Pointy ears, a small body, a long tail… Mo Tianliao looked at the lively kitten figure he had carved and wondered if Mo Xiaozhao had grown up…
Somehow, Mo Tianliao had the feeling that something was watching him. He abruptly turned to look up at the canopy of the trees, only to see a pair of crystal-clear eyes looking right back at him unblinkingly!
Mo Tianliao’s mind turned blank upon meeting those eyes.
The owner of those eyes was a half-grown cat without a trace of colour in its snow-white coat. It was crouching quietly up in the treetops and watching him now. Right above its left paw was a little bracelet inlaid with many precious stones and carved with multiple exquisite-looking patterns. The bracelet was a matching pair with his old wristguard, and it could change size to suit the cat’s growth or movements…
Mo Tianliao grabbed a tree branch and pulled himself up nimbly. He rested his body on the branch and slowly moved his face closer to the kitten.
The white kitten didn’t move at all, seemingly waiting for him to climb up the tree.
“Xiaozhao?” Mo Tianliao called out to the cat in disbelief. Following that, he earned a slap on the face from Lord Kitty.
Mo Xiaozhao didn’t like that name, so it would slap Mo Tianliao every time he called it that.
Mo Tianliao was overcome with joy! He picked the little kitten up and buried his face in its fur, “Xiaozhao… Xiaozhao! It’s really you!”
“Meow!” Lord Kitty abruptly fluffed up in anger.
You damn idiot! What are you doing! How dare you rub your face on your master’s belly! This is utter disrespect towards your master!!
You may address this excellency as Lord Kitty – Mo Xiaozhao 2019 (just kidding)
The author uses 猫大爷 for Mo Xiaozhao sometimes, which I’ve playfully translated as Lord Kitty. When Mo Tianliao uses it, you can imagine a helpless and coddling tone, like for a naughty but beloved pet.
Eg: ‘Lord Kitty, please stop stepping on my head’
Also, I guess Lord Kitty is out of the bag?
shishu (师叔) – literally ‘teacher-uncle’, term used to refer to a senior cultivator who has the same master as your master
shizhi (师侄) – literally ‘teacher-nephew’, term used to refer to a junior cultivator whose master is your shixiong/shidi (brother under the same master)
shizu (师祖) – literally ‘teacher-ancestor’, term used to refer to a senior cultivator who is the master of your master, similar to a grandfather