Volume 1 Chapter 38: A Friend

Although the cultivators from big cultivation families didn’t have to climb the mountain, they still had to wait for the other cultivators to arrive at the peak and take the assessment together. They didn’t have to wait for long though, as all cultivators that didn’t make it to the peak within the next hour would be immediately disqualified.

During this time, the cultivators from the big families were free to move around and chat with each other.

Qin Shi Meng walked over to where Ye Yong was. She had some questions that she wanted to ask him, like what his cultivation was. Previously, she had thought that Ye Yong lost his cultivation, so she hadn’t dared to ask about it.

“Didn’t Fairy Qin hate Ye Yong? Didn’t they cancel their engagement? Shouldn’t there be no reason for them to interact with each other anymore? Why does it feel like she is more friendly to Ye Yong than before and even took the initiative to go and talk to him? Why isn’t she coming to talk to me?”

“I heard that after Ye Yong canceled the engagement, there was a rumor that Ye Yong had crippled his cultivation, so Fairy Qin felt guilty and went to visit Ye Yong several times. Ye Yong had calculated it well. But now that the truth about him retaining his cultivation has been let out, Fairy Qin definitely won’t let him off easily. Just watch.”

Contrary to their expectations, however, Qin Shi Meng didn’t get mad at Ye Yong- Ye Yong even invited Qin Shi Meng onto the airship, and the two of them drank tea together on the gazebo. No one else except Wu Xue was near them.

“What’s happening?” the male cultivators who thought they knew and saw through everything were shocked.

“It must be because that shameless Qin Shi Meng increased her cultivation level and is showing off to Young Master Ye. Poor Young Master Ye didn’t know that and is thinking that Qin Shi Meng just wants to talk with him.” Compared to the many male cultivators that saw Ye Yong as an enemy, many of the female cultivators saw Qin Shi Meng as an enemy.

That’s just how young people were- many would be envious of the people better than them if they were of the same sex and would be amazed by them if they were of the opposite sex.

Ye Yong and Qin Shi Meng had no idea that the people around them were already guessing and spreading rumors about their conversation. Their conversation didn’t include any accusations or fighting- just normal chit-chat about cultivation.

“What is your cultivation now?” Qin Shi Meng asked, taking a sip and looking at Ye Yong. As her cultivation increased, Qin Shi Meng became more and more fairy-like, and her aura became more and more distinguished.

However, Ye Yong had a divine physique, so his mental strength was quite strong. He smiled and waved his hand, saying, “Definitely lower than yours, it’s not worth mentioning.” Well, he was in the 11th layer of the Foundation Establishment Realm after all, a cultivation that he hadn’t even seen before in the novel. Who knew how it compared to the Crystallization Realm?

“You did recultivate, right?” Qin Shi Meng asked. Although everyone else believed that Ye Yong had cultivated the high-level qi occlusion art from the beginning and hid it from the elders of the Ye Family and didn’t actually cripple his cultivation, Qin Shi Meng had a feeling that Ye Yong had indeed recultivated and had become stronger than before.

“That’s right,” Ye Yong said. He didn’t hide it from Qin Shi Meng because she was smart, and even if he denied it, she would have guessed the truth. He thought it would be better to just admit it and increase her favorability rating, although there was currently no change in her favorability rating.

“In 2 months, you got to the 7th layer of the Foundation Establishment Realm or even higher. Even if you had recultivated, this is still an amazing speed… you give me strange feelings about you, and I sometimes wonder if you aren’t Ye Yong at all but someone else.”

“I am Ye Yong the original Yong. Replacement guaranteed if fake,” Ye Yong said. He wasn’t lying- he was indeed Ye Yong- just not the “Ye Yong”.

“Ye Yong the original Yong? Pfft~” Qin Shi Meng covered her mouth and laughed lightly. This was the first time she had heard of such a strange way of speaking.

This was different from a polite public relations smile or laugh- this was a genuine laugh coming from Qin Shi Meng’s heart. Even with a divine physique, Ye Yong’s mind went blank for a brief moment. He immediately drank some tea to calm himself down. Qin Shi Meng’s favorability rating had just gone up enough to view him as a friend, so if Ye Yong looked at her with lustful eyes, that favorability rating would instantly go boom and crash down.

Well, that didn’t mean that he couldn’t look at her lustfully- it all depended on her favorability rating. If it was high enough, then not only would she not hate it, she would probably even feel happy about it. It was important to not rush things and take it one step at a time.

Well, Ye Yong was still free to praise her. “Lady Qin’s smile births a hundred charms, dulling the beauty of the world.”¹

This world had poetry and songs, and some geniuses were able to become saints through poetry, songs, art, and books- that is to say, they didn’t have to cultivate like normal cultivators. A poetic line or song could contain amazing power.

Well, this way of cultivating was way harder compared to the normal way of cultivation, and those who succeeded were the peerless geniuses that had comprehended the Dao.

There were currently only 6 people in the Lower World that became saints that way. All of them were amazing existences that were better than the average saints, and one of them was even a young heroine. However, Ye Yong was currently unable to meet her.

“Smile births a hundred charms, dulling the beauty of the world…” Qin Shi Meng repeated in a small voice. She was pleasantly surprised. “I didn’t know you were so good at poetry.”

As it was poetry that had come from Earth and got modified a bit, it was original poetry in this world. Qin Shi Meng liked to read poetry and listen to songs when she wasn’t cultivating and comprehending the sword, and this was the first time she had heard such high praise describing a girl’s smile.

“This is… something I heard from a friend,” Ye Yong said. He wasn’t a poet, nor did he know much poetry. He could easily tell webnovels, but poetry? Not gonna happen. As such, he didn’t take credit for it, but rather gave it to a nonexistent friend.

This way, even if he can’t produce beautiful poetry, Qin Shi Meng won’t blame him. And if he ever got in the mood to create some beautiful poetry, he could just say that it was his friend who told him about it.

“That friend of yours is pretty amazing,” Qin Shi Meng said. “But it’s best not to take other’s creations of poetry and give it to other females. That’s being disrespectful.”

“I understand,” Ye Yong said, nodding his head. He didn’t have any intentions of pretending to be a literati.

“What’s your friend’s name? Has he published any books or poetry collections?” Qin Shi Meng asked. “If possible, I would like to buy one of them.”

“To my knowledge, he hasn’t published any.”

“Then where is he?”

“I don’t know. He likes to travel, so I have no clue of his whereabouts,” Ye Yong said, sweating a bit. He decided that he was going to buy a poetry collection from Earth from the system so he could write a few random poems to publish in a poetry collection so Qin Shi Meng would stop pursuing and looking for his nonexistent friend.

“Alright.” Qin Shi Meng just wanted to know more because she was amazed by the poetry. She couldn’t really press for more information if Ye Yong didn’t want to reveal any.

Wu Xue was different. She was convinced that Ye Yong was the one who had created the poem- he was just too humble to admit it. The reasoning? Simple, it was because the previous day, Ye Yong had told her all the new and fascinating stories that she had never ever heard of. Wu Xue loved poetry and stories as much as Qin Shi Meng did. She had a weak body, so she used to stay in her room all the time reading, and yet, she had never ever heard of the stories that Ye Yong had told her.

A handsome man and a beautiful woman sitting next to each other chatting and drinking tea together- this was a beautiful scene that would only come out of a painting.

A group of cultivators that adored Ye Yong and Qin Shi Meng had their eyes red with envy. What are you two talking about? Do you mind including one more person?

Some cultivators didn’t mind if they couldn’t talk with them- they were fine just being the table or the chair that Qin Shi Meng sat on. Of course, they just wanted to be involved in the chat between two geniuses- definitely not because they would get excited by having Qin Shi Meng sit on them.

Translator’s Notes:

¹ Ah, poetry, my worst nightmare to translate. I’ll try to keep them as “poetry” as much as I can.

Anyways, just one essay left for the quarter. And I calculated, I can pass the classes even if I bomb my finals. Heck yeah.

… Don’t ask me why I’m proud of that.

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