Chapter 4: First visit to the capital city of the spirit world (Part One)
It happened ten years ago, but the incident was engraved into Ouyang Xiaoleng’s mind. That night he was weak with sickness when he heard the summon of the Spirit King’s Crown in his body; it told him it needed power and his blood pact partner who could unleash its power was nearby.
He struggled out of his bed and entered Yongchuan Forest under the direction of the Spirit King’s Crown but was attacked by a pack of black foxes which must have been drawn to him by his spirit power. If he hadn’t been weakened by illness, they were no match for him. But at that moment, he couldn’t even maintain his human form. Turning into a small fox, he was chased after and wounded by the black foxes. When he was cornered under the big banyan tree, he was in despair but then Xia Qiu appeared.
Still a little girl, she saved him from the black foxes, carried him to her home, and dressed his wound. When he woke up in her arms, he found she was the person who could make a blood pact with him. As a young boy, he only had one thought on his mind: he couldn’t drag her into his world; it was too dangerous for her. He fled from her home before dawn.
But from that day on, she was always on his mind. She didn’t know that the power she possessed was a great attraction for evil spirits and ghosts and always went into Yongchuan Forest where such creatures frequented. Determined to protect her, he usually sat in the big banyan tree and watched out for her. As time went by, it became an obsession, but he couldn’t get close to her because the Spirit King’s Crown in his body craved so much for the blood pact that he might lose his head. Day and night in the last ten years, he longed for her; he didn’t know if this longing was part of his gratitude for her or not; he just wanted to guard her forever if he could.
“My grandpa was the first Fox Spirit King and began his rule in the spirit world one thousand years ago. Under his rule, the spirit world reached its peak stage and remained prosperous for hundreds of years until 400 years ago when the spirit tiger, Green Cloud, appeared. Green Cloud and his minions ran amok in the spirit world. He even issued a challenge to my grandpa. In the battle, my grandpa’s pact partner Ouyang Zhenhai died while my grandpa and Green Cloud were severely wounded. My grandpa died soon after; before he died, he instructed his offspring and future descendants to take the surname of Ouyang in the memory of his pact partner. My father Ouyang Xueyue inherited the throne and became the second Fox Spirit King. He led the spirit world back to prosperity with his blood pact partner, who was also my mother. Sixteen years ago, I was born; but one month later, Green Cloud, who had disappeared for 400 years, returned. On New Year’s Eve, he launched a sneak attack on the capital city with the help of his spies inside the city. My father and mother died that night, leaving me behind. Afterwards, the spirit world fell apart and different states and cities worked on their own; no one knows if they are loyal to the capital city or not and the capital city itself became unsafe. To protect me, Ouyang Hongye, my father’s sworn brother the Red Hair Fox Spirit, took me, an infant, to the human world and hid in the old family house left by Ouyang Zhenhai.”
As Ouyang Xiaoleng told his life story, Xia Qiu didn’t hear any emotion in his voice, as if he was telling another person’s story, which made her heart go out to him. How could he not hate Green Cloud, who killed his grandfather and parents? How could he not hate the people who betrayed him? Ouyang Xiaoleng was of her own age but was burdened with such grief and horrible fate. Maybe it was why he looked so cold.
“You saved me, too, right? I do remember what happened by the Silver Moon Lake. I thought it was only a nightmare.”
“The monster that attacked you was very probably a ghost servant working for Mother Rakshasa, who was a powerful subordinate under Green Cloud. Monsters like Mother Rakshasa must eat the livers of young girl regularly. A girl like you who possesses power is undoubtedly an attractive target for her.”
“That’s why you told me not to go there after dark.” Xia Qiu was putting the pieces of the picture together.
“Do you believe what Hongye and I told you?” Xiaoleng asked.
“Yes, I do!”
“Aren’t you afraid?”
Ouyang Xiaoleng realized this human girl was stronger than he had thought. No wonder she dared to fight black foxes when she was only six years old. After he told her his life story, she had sorrow instead of fear in her eyes. Obviously, she didn’t take him as a powerful monster; instead she was sad for his suffering. He began to understand why she was the best human candidate to make a blood pact with him—in her slim body lived a soul that was even stronger than his.
Would she agree to be part of his power if he asked? A blood pact would strengthen him and her, but it would also change everything she possessed; she might be in danger any moment and even lose her life, and she could never explain it to her family or friends. This was a war in his world; wouldn’t he be selfish to drag her, an innocent girl, into it? The question that had troubled him for ten years was still troubling him, and the feeling grew stronger as his longing for her increased.
“Don’t worry about the blood pact. Hongye and I will think of another way to solve the problem.”(read on noodletowntranslated dot com to support the actual translators)
“But your adoptive father said I’m the best candidate to make a blood pact with you. If…” Xia Qiu said without thinking even though she didn’t truly understand what the blood pact meant.
Ouyang Xiaoleng interrupted her firmly. “We’ll talk about it later.”
Ouyang Hongye had known Ouyang Xiaoleng wouldn’t change his mind so soon, but telling Xia Qiu the truth was the first step toward success. After meeting Xia Qiu, he began to make plans for the second step.(read on noodletowntranslated dot com to support the actual translators)
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