Chapter 2: “He suspects he took the wrong script.”
If you wanted to talk about why Qianren would get pestered by this malicious ghost, we’ll have to start the story from midnight, last night.
In the first place, since Qianren was able to become a hitman, he already had a calm and cautious personality. Even if his target was merely a tiny town within the mountains, he still gathered any information he could to be completely prepared.
The local Zhu family was surrounded by mountains from all directions. They didn’t have much arable land, nor the conditions to have good trading relations. Normally, a family like theirs wasn’t suited to live in the county town.
However, during the previous dynasty Xi Liang, an emperor’s pampered concubine had a very unique taste in food. She especially loved eating the wild fruits from this very mountain. Thus, that emperor specifically ordered some of his people to immigrate there to pick fruits. This was precisely why the Zhu family existed today.
The Xi Liang dynasty has already been wiped out many years ago, and the new emperor naturally didn’t have the slightest interest in wild mountain fruits. Thus, anyone with the ability to move away has already left.
The remaining villagers only made a bare living by picking herbal plants to make medicine. Their days were passed in a very poverty-stricken manner.
Strange, demonic events happened easily precisely in places like this; barren hills and wild rivers that were cut off from the rest of the world. Ten years ago, a passerby inadvertently mentioned that the Zhu family would offer girls in their prime as sacrifices to a ghost saint every month.
It would have been fine if a normal bystander heard this. However, at the time, Fu Hongye, a disciple from the Profound Sect, had also been at the scene. Hearing this rumour, he immediately asked where the Zhu family lived, before hurrying over to save the innocent women being sacrificed.
Qianren had always been unable to understand the way these righteous cultivators from the Profound Sect liked saving the common folk. He only knew that Fu Hongye had never returned from that trip.
Although the Profound Sect had also sent people over to the Zhu family to ask about him, they didn’t manage to find any traces of Fu Hongye. Thus, they had only regarded him as a normal missing-in-action case.
It was only until He Huan was tidying up some files a few days ago, did he realize there was something fishy about all of this. Only then did he send Qianren over to investigate thoroughly.
Sometimes, cultivators would have sudden flashes of comprehension and then enter seclusion for a few decades. Dying in the mountains or fields during a battle against the demonic faction was also very normal.
Thus, every sect was already long used to their disciples suddenly disappearing. As long as the missing disciples weren’t core disciples, they normally wouldn’t pay a lot of attention to them.
Although Qianren knew his Master must have unfathomable reasons for sending him to investigate a Profound Sect outer disciple, he was still perplexed despite pondering over it a hundred times as he travelled there.
Today, black clouds covered the moon and made it impossible to see the starlight. It felt extremely secluded and quiet at midnight in the mountains and forest.
As one walked on the little trail between the messy underbrush, the only thing you would hear would be the echoing sounds between your own footsteps, and the chafing sounds as the dead leaves rubbed against the ground.
During a time like this, normal people wouldn’t dare to walk about alone at night. However, Bi Qianren, with his superb night vision, didn’t feel the least out of sorts.
After all, from birth, his body already contained shocking demonic energy. As long as a ghost had even the slightest common sense, they wouldn’t have the courage to come and throw their lives away.
However, Bi Qianren forgot that in such a rural place like this, ghosts and spirits probably didn’t get a chance to encounter a demonic cultivator during their entire existence. Thus, the possibility of not recognizing the natural demonic energy in him still existed.
For example, at that very moment, the atmosphere suddenly became gloomy and cold. Following that, little by little, the dew on the grass and leaves slowly condensed into frost.
Suddenly, from the gloomy alley ahead of him, a group of people wearing red robes began rushing toward him!
These people were precisely the groom’s entourage that’s in charge of picking up the new bride!
Other than blood-red, there weren’t any other colours on the bridal sedan chair accompanying them. Even the swaying tassels were a patch of red.
The sedan’s porter and the entire entourage also wore red from head to toe, and a sheet of red paper covered their faces. Only the closed-eye young man sitting on top of the sedan chair wore pure white inner robes, but he also wore a scarlet wedding dress on the outside.
However, if you took a closer look, you would suddenly realize: this person’s white robes were actually made from hemp used to make mourning garments. Thus, the visual difference between blood red and white, looked truly frightening.
As the distance between them shortened, the little ghosts walking on the sides of the sedan chair began scattering ritual money1 like frolicking children. In the midst of the fluttering paper, only a strange laughter echoed continuously.
A situation like this couldn’t be caused by an ordinary little ghost. An icy look flashed by in Qianren’s gaze as he finished accumulating the demonic energy in his body. Standing motionlessly, he crossed his arms, ready to make a move at any given moment.
Since the Zhu family had offered sacrifices to a ghost saint for ten years, Qianren naturally assumed that the master of this entourage was either formed from the spirits of the dead women who wanted revenge, or was precisely the ghost saint receiving the sacrifices in the first place.
From the present circumstances, the possibility of the latter being true seemed higher.
This was also quite good. Encountering them today meant there was no need to waste time afterwards to seek them out.
Let him, demonic cultivator Bi Qianren, take a good look at this ghost bridegroom!
Sure enough, this malicious ghost came because of him. The crowd of red-clothed ghosts surrounded him tightly, before they began silently waving their sleeves and dancing around the black-clothed man.
Their strange movements looked distinctly like an ancient sacrificial dance. As demonic energy began gathering at Qianren’s fingertips, he thought—letting his first battle for his re-debut into the jianghu be against a fierce malicious ghost, this was also pretty good.
As if he was expecting Qianren was about to make a move, the closed-eye bridegroom who had originally been sitting peacefully on the top of the sedan chair suddenly opened his eyes.
At this moment, two pairs of eyes suddenly locked gazes.
Qianren was slightly shocked. Only now did he realize that this ghost’s appearance was still young and tender. Although his complexion was as pale as ash, a colour unique to the dead, the malicious ghost could still be considered a delicate and pretty young man.
Based on his appearance, he was probably only eighteen years old when he died. With regard to cultivators, this was precisely the age where they entered the jianghu to start their own adventures.
To become a ghost so young, it was truly a pity.
After sighing faintly in his heart, Qianren realized he had truly grown old. When he first entered the jianghu, to him, the only difference he found between people was how some were people he needed to kill, while others were people he shouldn’t. Nowadays, he actually began caring about who his enemy once was.
Up until now, everything in this flashback had unfolded quite normally.
A demonic cultivator who had re-entered the jianghu met a malicious ghost on the road. Fighting a mighty battle, swords clashing under the heavens with no fear of life or death, this was precisely the jianghu.
However, as if something suddenly broke, the malicious ghost who was supposed to be his opponent suddenly looked distressed after he opened his eyes and saw Bi Qianren’s face.
Just when Qianren began wondering if he and this ghost had met before, the ghost sighed sadly and said, “Oh dear, it’s a man again. When this one stands, he’s even taller than my sedan chair. How can I squeeze him in ah?”
Qianren has devoted himself to cultivating for many years, so he had practically met all the experts from both the righteous and evil ways. He had even once fought tenaciously against the strongest cultivator under the skies, Qing Xuzi.
Qianren thought he could remain calm and tranquil no matter who he encountered. However, someone who disdained he was too tall to stuff into a sedan chair, was truly the first he had ever met!
At this moment, Qianren could only lower his head to take a look at his own body, one that was sturdy to the point that it was impossible to mistake him for a woman. Then, he began to ponder what exactly were the preferences of cut sleeves nowadays.
It was as if this youth’s words were a switch that got turned on just to make the plot malfunction even more. The little ghosts who had been dancing for a few rounds were also somewhat tired.
When they saw how Qianren hadn’t reacted at all, the ghosts asked in a vexed tone, “Boss, he’s just standing there motionlessly. What should we do?”
When he heard this, the malicious ghost tilted his head to look at the living person they just caught. Sure enough, even Qianren’s eyebrows—ones that looked sculpted out of ice—didn’t even move once.
In the ghost’s memory, whenever an ordinary person encountered a ghost, there were no one who wasn’t actually afraid. So he didn’t think there was anything amiss right now.
The malicious ghost only sighed again and said, “Oh dear, so pitiful! He’s been frightened to the point his face has frozen. Oh well, just let it be a man ah. This husband will still love you dearly.”
Always expressionless Qianren: “……”
When Bi Qianren saw how the little ghosts had really carried over the sedan chair to him, he finally understood that it was him who had thought too much.
This completely wasn’t an opponent that was worth a battle, because these countryside little ghosts still didn’t recognize he was a demonic cultivator!
That’s right! Bi Qianren, the demonic way’s least sexy male cultivator, the former Palace of Bliss’ Protector who had lived sixty-eight years but still hadn’t found a double cultivation partner, finally attained his entire life’s peak desirability today—a malicious ghost wanted to kidnap him!
However, in regards to this shocking reality, Qianren wanted to express: his heartbeat didn’t fluctuate at all……to the point he wanted to kill someone.
Indifferently looking at the sedan chair right under his nose, Qianren lifted his foot without the slightest hesitation. Following a “boom” sound, this irksome sedan chair disintegrated just like that, with the torn red cloth fragments fluttering as they fell.
Qianren shot a glance at the stupefied ghosts floating in the air. Just when he was about to send this arrogant ghost on the road, he heard the porter shout mournfully, “Boss! He sent the top of the sedan chair flying with a single kick, what long legs ah!”
Originally, the malicious ghost realized that this man wasn’t someone to be trifled with and wanted to escape. But when he heard the porter’s sudden words, he subconsciously looked over.
A cultivator’s body and contours were normally more lean than a normal mortal’s. This was also the first time the ghost had ever seen such a handsome and tall man, so he couldn’t help but say in shock, “He truly has really long legs!”
Exactly where did Qianren bump his head, breaking it, to actually think a countryside little ghost like this would be a good opponent?
While he was speechlessly looking at these ghosts who completely couldn’t read the mood, Qianren suddenly realized that bullying idiots like them didn’t really match his identity as the demonic way’s Protector.
In the end, he still put away his demonic energy, and only used his foot to kick that irksome ghost’s head.
“Quickly run ah! Boss’ head also got kicked flying!”
Sure enough, with this move, the little ghosts were frightened and began fleeing. However, Qianren’s depressed mood didn’t get relieved.
He had originally wanted to kick this ghost flying. After all, out of sight out of mind.
However, who would have thought that although something did go flying, it was only the head!
Half of that ghost’s body was still in front of him, and he was still persevering to court death. The malicious ghost hugged Qianren’s boots and said, “Um, this long-legged chivalrous hero, I can tell at first glance that you don’t have a wife. Coincidentally, I don’t have one either. In any case, you have already kicked my sedan chair. It won’t take much effort to worship the heavens and earth with this little one to finish our marriage!”
Qianren took back his words from before. This person’s death wasn’t a pity at all!
To try and seduce even a demonic cultivator like him, this was no doubt a corrupt evil spirit!
Expressionlessly looking at this headless malicious ghost, Qianren was finally unable to keep calm. He immediately kicked the ghost’s body into the horizon too. “Scram! If you dare appear in front of me again, I’ll scatter your soul!”
The above was precisely Mister Hitman Bi Qianren’s first encounter with the malicious ghost.
Qianren’s Master Hu Huan had once told him, ghosts were usually formed after a person was killed unjustly, with nowhere to vent their grievances. As demonic cultivators with standards, bullying some righteous cultivators when they had free time was basically the basic requirements of their profession.
However, digging out corpses and refining ghosts, this type of behaviour was just bad taste.
After all, smelling like a rotten corpse all the time was really disrespecting your double cultivation partner.
With regards to his Master’s lecturing, Qianren had long learned to only listen to the useful bits. Thus, he had some understanding when it came to malicious ghosts, and knew that this youth was probably someone who had died when he was on the road to fetch his bride.
Only after he succeeded in worshipping the heavens and earth, finishing his wedding and solving his obsession, could he re-enter the cycle of reincarnation.
After Qianren had devoted himself to cultivating for so many decades, he could now faintly understand the intentions of heavenly law. He thought it was also somewhat pitiful for someone to die on their celebration day.
This was why he didn’t bother dealing with the malicious ghost for his impudent actions and ended up letting him go.
However, this didn’t mean Qianren could endure this malicious ghost’s constant harassment.
At this moment, when he saw the ghost—who wasn’t the least afraid of death—appear in front of him again, Qianran thought:
Sure enough, it’s better to just let this guy disappear!