Former Sweetheart — Chapter 18 Part 1

Chapter 18 Part 1: “What exactly is your relationship with him?”

Finally, a clue was found with regards to the matters surrounding the Rain Monarch Cave. 

However, before anyone could investigate the details, the high-ranking disciples Qiu Yuebai dispatched brought back some bad news:

“Reporting to the Mansion Master, we acted under orders to enter the city and arrest Wang Facai. But when we arrived at the Red Apricot Tavern, he was already no longer there.”

“After nightfall, the city gates have been locked. The tenants of Red Apricot Tavern and their neighbours all said that they didn’t see Wang Facai leave his home. However, our disciples have searched the entire city, but we still didn’t find any traces of his whereabouts.”

It was late at night. As an ordinary person with no cultivation, it was impossible for Wang Facai to have secretly left the city. 

It was also impossible for him to foresee them capturing Wang Caihe. So why did he suddenly vanish without a trace?

This outcome was truly beyond everyone’s expectations. Fu Hongye immediately turned toward the trembling Wang Caihe to ask, “Did he say before that he wanted to go somewhere?”

As the daughter of a peasant family, Wang Caihe had never gone to such a serene and hidden place like this. Even after leaving the underground cave, she still felt extremely cold. 

Afraid that these cultivators would throw her back into the cave again, she immediately replied, “No. This humble woman was afraid he was lying, so I only gave him half of the promised remuneration.”

“I’ve made an appointment with him and said that I’ll give him the rest of the silver after successfully taking water from the Rain Monarch Cave. He’s supposed to be waiting for me at the tavern.”

After their fall, the Wang family had become afraid of being poor. Since young, Wang Facai had loved money like it was as important as his life. He usually hated how he was unable to squeeze his tenants of all their wealth.

Taking in both his feelings and logic, it was impossible for Wang Facai to abandon all his money and suddenly flee. 

Then, would his sudden appearance be the result of someone killing him to destroy the evidence?

In the midst of everyone’s confusions, the detached bystander You Jiang suddenly spoke, “The wishing well you were talking about before, is it basically the mouth of a spring that is wrapped in three chi1 of vines?”

His description was so accurate, Qiu Yuebai was immediately stunned. “That’s right. Has Senior seen it before?”

In reply, You Jiang merely pointed at something not too far in the distance, “Isn’t that precisely it?”

Sure enough, the place You Jiang was pointing at was the mouth of a spring. It was circled in half-dried vines and located under the shade. The water looked serene, yet it wasn’t possible to see the bottom.

When they took a closer look, a piece of paper leisurely floated up from underneath the water. 

Normal paper would be ruined after it touches water. However, this piece of deathly white paper had been soaked in the spring water, yet didn’t have even the slightest sense of wetness. Even the words written on it hadn’t blurred at all.

One only needed a single glance to make out Wang Facai’s full name.

Other than Qiu Yuebai, the people who had been named in the wishing well had all silently disappeared. Upon seeing these words, Qiu Yuebai’s complexion immediately became gloomy. 

He could only sigh, “It seems like Wang Facai is already gone. Associating with the demonic thing ended up causing his own downfall.”

To defend the people, the Heavenly Alliance created protective seals around all the cities. The Rain Monarch Cave even had both You Jiang and Fu Hongye, the strongest experts of both the righteous and demonic ways, personally guarding it.

So when all was said and done, what kind of a remarkable power did this demonic thing have?

How did it conceal its actions from their perception, to be able to silently create the wishing well here?

This demon even released the name of the victim to provoke them. It was seriously being daring and presumptuous! 

The demonic thing’s move, which was no different from taunting them to their face, immediately aroused You Jiang’s haughtiness. Temporarily relinquishing his interest in opposing Fu Hongye, You Jiang stepped forward to seriously examine the piece of paper that had suddenly appeared.

During this examination, he actually noticed a peculiarity. “This isn’t a piece of paper. It’s Underworld Silk.”

His observation even astounded Fu Hongye. “Why would something like this appear in the mortal realm?”

Both of their reactions were unusual. Qiu Yuebai immediately came forward to ask, “What is Underworld Silk?”

“The ritual money burnt by people in the mortal realm during the New Year and other festivals all carry one’s thoughts. After the physical forms for a portion of the comparatively stronger thoughts are burnt to ashes, little ghosts would create Underworld Silk and send them to the other ghosts.”

“Underworld Silk is the currency of ghosts. After coming in contact with Yang energy, it would slowly dissipate. It’s reasonable to say that it shouldn’t exist in the mortal realm.”

This was something normal people had absolutely no chance to even see. As for You Jiang’s ability to recognize it in a single glance, it was thanks to the demonic way’s good relationship with the ghost realm.

But while he pinched the paper that had taken away lives, traces of confusion still remained in You Jiang’s expression. “Although the Yin energy in the Rain Monarch Cave is heavy, there is no demonic aura. It doesn’t look like a malicious ghost is causing mischief ah.”

In the past, these strips of paper with names written on them disappeared after a while. The Azure Sky Mansion didn’t even have the chance to inspect the handwriting before they would lose the evidence.

Qiu Yuebai originally thought the demonic thing had done something to make the pieces of paper disappear. He had never expected they actually came from the underworld.

Sure enough, did the thing recorded in his family history come back to life? 

Thinking this, Qiu Yuebai fell into contemplation. However, as Fu Hongye seriously examined the naturally formed spring opening, the righteous leader actually formed a guess about what was happening. 

“Even if the three ghost saints from the ghost realm personally made a move, you and I would definitely notice their traces. To be able to hide from our spiritual knowledge, I’m afraid it’s not something made by mankind……”

As the leader of the demonic way, You Jiang naturally didn’t have shallow knowledge or experience. Hearing this, he immediately understood what Fu Hongye meant. “You’re talking about spirits?”

The so-called spirit was different from demons and ghosts. Spirits were beings who formed their consciousness after spiritual energy accumulated in a certain place for millions of years. They were incorporeal and colourless, and felt no sorrow nor any happiness.

Occasionally, spirits would attach themselves to material objects and be seen by humans. But most of the time, they would silently guard their own territories, with only the plants and trees as their company.

Spirits possessed the purest spiritual energy in the entire world. They were neither righteous nor demonic, staying outside the boundaries of the three realms and not conforming to any of the five elements.

It was hard to categorize their power. In ancient times, strong spirits were said to be capable of gobbling even the immortal deities, using them as their own nourishment.

But weak spirits were similar to morning dew. Merely an ordinary person accidentally stepping on them would be enough to cause them to dissipate.

But despite all the uncertainties about spirits, there was one fact that was definitely true:

Spirits would never take the initiative to appear in front of humans.

Immortal cultivators had existed for countless millennia, but each sect only had a few records of spirits in their libraries. Even for those spirits already known by mankind, people were only aware of some of their abilities. The details about their origin and history were ultimately not clear.

After reaching the Post-Calamity realm, cultivators would be able to notice something abnormal if merely a single strand of True Energy had appeared. But this well had appeared without any detectable activity. 

There was only one way for this to be possible: if this well had formed naturally, just like seeds sprouting or trees bearing fruit.

The demonic thing that was controlling this well must have perfectly fused with the surroundings, so that none of their actions would give rise to any spiritual energy turbulence.

This was something only naturally born and raised spirits could accomplish.

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  1. A Chinese foot, unit of measurement. Around one-third of a meter.

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