125 The Exalt Heaven Fairy
Yang Min the Left Deviant Protector of the Martial Deviant Clan was alone in a dimly lit tent. She was trembling. It was not from the cold weather or from bath that she had taken in the cool spring river earlier that had caused her to tremble uncontrollably.
She was a dignified lady. But today, she felt that she had lost all her self-worth, all because of the Martial Grandmaster Bai Liangong. She hated him and was biding her time. However, she knew that he was aware of it as well. That was why she had spent years to gain his trust and devising stratagems for him.
She had never truly gained his trust even though he had promoted her to be his Left Protector. In fact, her position was as precarious as ever. It proved the saying of 'Accompanying the Liege Lord is akin to a company with a Tiger' once more.
Bai Liangong had never treated her with decency either did he respects her in front of the others despite her seniority in the Martial Deviant and would humiliate her whenever he felt like it.
She lifted her trembling fingers to wipe her melancholy tears as she gasped her bosoms bitterly.
But the most heartbreaking thing today was seeing the Lunar Heaven Fairy again after so many years!
It immediately reminded her of her once exalted past…
Her celestial name used to be the Exalt Heaven Fairy and she was from the Melody Palace. She used to be most exalted of the exalts among the celestial maidens in the Melody and that was how she had got her celestial name.
Her extraordinary beauty and elegance were renowned throughout the celestial fraternity of the lower realm!
But shortly after she had ascended to the Celestial Realm, she began to lament her fate. The Celestial Realm was not what she had been expecting and she had fallen victim to Bai Liangong the Martial Grandmaster and was humiliated by him.
She reached out for her fragrant sachet, a circular metallic with intricate designs as she took deep sniff to calm herself down. Bai Liangong had drugged her and forced her to take the Hundred Fragrance Sniffs, a potent drug with strong addictive influences.
If she were to stop taking the Hundred Fragrance Sniffs, she would have withdrawal symptoms and the cravings alone would turn from pleasures to nightmarish torments!
However that was not the reason why she was trembling.
She was revolted by Bai Liangong; his touch, his wicked eyes and his jesting laughter. Everything that was to do with him completely repulsed her!
That was why she had laid for herself three courses of action to undermine him!
The first was to subtly create a diversion with the Celestial Aiel Faction and to weaken his overall influences.
The second was to seek an opportunity within the Stellar Sanctuary. She was not his match and his Martial Deviant Force was too overwhelming. But she had concluded that hidden in the Stellar Sanctuary, were numerous epitome divine skills to be found!
Bai Liangong himself had found the Martial Deviant Skill in the Stellar Sanctuary and that ultimately put him among the best fighters in the Celestial Realm. She concluded with her intellect, she may have some luck.
Thirdly, she had hoped to find some former celestial acquaintances that she had known in the lower realm among the celestial clans that were allied with the Holy Ascension Sect. Failing that, she would defect to the Holy Ascension Sect at the first opportunity.
It was a gambit of course. The Holy Ascension Sect was not known to trust defectors from the dark celestial clans that defected on their own.
She smiled bitterly to herself, "I have degraded my dignity to this low?"
She wept as she muttered to herself, "I have thought that after I have ascended to the Celestial Realm, I will meet the knight errant of my heart. Eventually we will dual celestial together and be a pair of enviable celestials. Our love story will enter the annals of the Celestial Realm and recite for all time…"
She was shivering and could no longer bear to continue!
It was because she knew that it was not true!
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It was a dream that had escaped her; the maidens of the Melody Palace adhered to their chastity vows for the day that they could finally ascended and dual celestial with their celestial beloved.
That was also her lifelong dream and it was now completely shattered!
She muttered melancholy, "There are really no good men in the entire Celestial Realm? Where are all the righteous heroes that dare to oppose the powerful tyrants and the oppressors? Are all the men that are left in the Celestial Realm only interested in their own attainment and self-preservation?"
She continued to lament, "Where are all the protégé sisters that are before me? Have they met with the same unfortunate fates as well? Sister Stellar, Sister Lunar…where are you…"
But today, she had finally chanced upon the Lunar Heaven Fairy. Not only her but Revelation Star, Luminous Star and Melody Star too…
But they seemed to have forgotten about her.
She muttered, "It is better for Revelation Star, Luminous Star and Melody Star to forget about me. I am not fit to be their protégé mistress anymore. I have caused Jing'Er to suffer. At this moment, she may no longer be alive. I am a perpetrator…why didn't I have the courage to stand against Bai Liangong? Why didn't I have the courage to stand by her? A thousand years of sisterhood that meant nothing in the end? Because I want my revenge? I have no more friends…"
"You are wrong." A maiden voice said gently from the shadows of the tent.
Yang Min was startled as she quickly looked around but there were no sight of everyone!
Her martial level was not weak and it was impossible for anyone to surprise her at this close proximity. However, she knew that the intruder was near her!
Before she knew it, two maidens emerged from the shadows of the tent and startling her!
She gasped, "Revelation Star and Endor Vixen Fairy! How did you…"
Indeed, it was Yixian and Youxue!
The martial level of their internal strength was so profound that they could completely stop breathing and became petrified as one with their surroundings!
She broke into cold sweat at the level of stealth that they had displayed and that they were actually watching her and eavesdropping on her without her noticing at all!
She was in disbelief that the level of attainment in their internal strength had actually surpassed her!
In fact, even at this close proximity she was not able to sense that they were actually breathing. What a superb internal breathing technique!
Needless to say, there was no doubt that their swiftness movement skills must be superb too for them to sneak into the camps of the Martial Deviant Faction and not be noticed by anyone!
Yixian said gently, "I am Shui Yixian the Celestial Fairy and she is Xiao Youxue. We are not the Revelation Star or the Endor Vixen Fairy that you have known. Of the past, we have no memories. We are here at the urging of your sister, Jing'Er to take you away."
Yang Min was startled, "Jing'Er still lives?!"
Yixian nodded gently, "At least she is when we left her with our other sisters."
Youxue nodded as she said coolly, "We have been waiting for you for quite some time. We will have shown up much earlier if not for your attendants that are always with you all the time."
Yang Min smiled bitterly, "Luckily you didn't show up while my attendants are still around. They are the eyes and ears of Bai Liangong."
Youxue said coolly, "Come with us."
Yang Min said with a weak smile, "I am happy here. Why should I want to leave?"
Youxue said coldly, "You don't even know how to lie. Up to you, I can't be bothered. I am only here because your sister pleads with us to rescue you. I can't bear to see her tears."
Yang Min was startled, "Jing'Er pleads to you? She does not hate me for leaving her to her fate?"
Youxue said, "On the contrary, she believes that you have your own difficulties and understand it. She even says she is willing to die for you so that you can overcome your difficulties first. She says that you must surely have suffered much and she hopes that we can deliver you to safety…"
Yang Min burst into tears as she trembled, "Jing'Er is ever so kind…there is no way I can make up to her…"
Youxue continued casually, "And if possible, reunite with her or the Stellar Heaven Fairy."
Yang Min gasped, "Shi Shi is also alive?!"
Yixian said gently, "The Stellar Heaven Fairy met with an unlikely fate when she first ascended to the Celestial Realm and was forced to be in the servitude of Ximen Nanqing the Domain Lord of the Dominating Aura Clan. But she has now broken free of his control and is now happily married to the Lord of the Tranquil City."
Yang Min was truly stunned as she muttered, "Shi Shi had also met the same cruel fate as me? She is alive? Shi Shi…Jing'Er…"
She began to tremble uncontrollably!
Youxue asked, "So you want to come with us?"
Yang Min quickly composed herself as she looked coolly at Youxue and Yixian for a while.
She was renowned for her intellect and for her ability to gauge the various situations accurately, earning exalted praises from friends and foes alike.
When she had come calm herself down, she soon asked the crux of the question. "It is easier for the two of you to come and go. But if I were to go with you then you may not get out of here alive. Moreover…"
She looked at the entrance of the large tent as she said anxiously, "…moreover, Bai Liangong will be coming anytime soon. You better leave while you can…."
Her eyes were teary as she muttered melancholy, "Please tell Jing'Er and Shi Shi that I miss them terribly and will always be their closest sister. I really appreciate that the two of you are able to come here at the risk of your lives but please, hurry and go! The longer you stay here, the greater is the risk. There are many highly attained celestials here and as the night grows darker, there will be thousands more that will be returning to camp. You better hurry and leave…"
Yixian said gently, "Please come with us. We are not leaving without you."
Youxue said coldly, "Whether we will be able to get out of here alive is another matter. If you don't leave with us, I guess we will start dragging you out of the camp very soon!"
Yang Min was startled at her reply and knew that she was dealing with someone who could hold her intellect against her.
So what could she do except to smile weakly at her?
She said quietly, "Maiden Youxue, do you agree that we at least need a plan to move out of camp without notice? Surely, we can't fight our way through. I am really at my wits end now…"
Yixian sighed softly, "Maybe we just have to fight our way through. I don't have a plan either. Sister Youxue, do you have one?"
Youxue smiled weakly, "I am the most inexperience here. If even the Celestial Fairy and the Exalted Heaven Fairy cannot think of a plan, you are expecting me to come up with a plan?"
Yixian laughed softly, "My sweet sister. I saw your eyes flash just now. Surely with your quick wits, you must already have a plan or two. Am I right to say so?"
Youxue laughed mesmerizingly, "But my plans are difficult to execute. I think I have better not suggest it!"
Yang Min asked, "You have a plan? Let's hear it out first. It is better than no plan at all."
Youxue looked at Yixian before looking at Yang Min, "Since Bai Liangong will be coming here later, why not deploy the beauty trap as a ruse?"
Yang Min shivered as she smiled bitterly, "This really sounds like desperate measure to me. I got a better idea. How don't I pretend to capture you instead and you try the beauty trap on him?"
Youxue said with a wryly smile, "Unfortunately I do not intend to sacrifice myself for such an unworthy man."
Yang Min asked, "Then what else can we do?"
Youxue said coolly, "We still have three options more."
Yixian smiled, "What three options do we have?"
Youxue laughed mischievously, "Surrender, compromise and fight to the very end!"
Yang Min laughed softly, "Oh well…hats off to you. I just thought of another option…"
Youxue interrupted humorously, "Death?"
Yang Min clapped her hands gently, "You got it!"
Yixian laughed gently and with a soft sigh, "So this is the last merry moments already? For the last stand?"
Youxue, Yang Min and Yixian were all laughing softly at the same time. At that moment, they had come to a greater and better understanding for each other!
They had regretted and wished they had met each other much earlier and not in such a circumstance!
Yixian was suddenly melancholy and her lips moved slightly but it was noticed by Youxue immediately even though it was subtle.
Youxue asked, "Sister, you are thinking of Yi Ping?"
Yixian nodded gently, "I hope he is well. I don't want to see him in the netherworld."
She flushed slightly and smiled gently at Youxue, "Surely you are thinking of him too or else you won't know what I am thinking."
Youxue laughed softly, "Yes but so what?"
Yang Min smiled, "This Yi Ping must be an extraordinary man. Even when you are at the end of your journey, you are still thinking of him. But all men are the same. They always forget to cherish the old and hanker after the new. Moreover, he has so many consorts…"
Yixian smiled gently, "No, you are wrong. Ping'Er isn't what you think. He had saved me all too many times and until today, I didn't do much for him. I only wish him the best and have everlasting happiness!"
Youxue looked dreamily as she muttered, "He is the best. No one can replace him in my heart. When he had thought that the Goddess Celestial Alice was dead, he paid homage to her every single day without fail. I am sure he does the same for us. Even though he has many consorts now but that does not matter. You know, at first the entire wedding is a mock to restraint the Ascension Goddess but it has become real. I wish them all true happiness, especially Lele, Yunzi and Lie Qing."
Yixian smiled gently as she recalled fondly, "Ping'Er is too dense to take any action. I wish I can like Lie Qing and Lele…"
Yang Min was stunned at their unshakeable faith in this man called Yi Ping. From their soft expressions, it seemed that they had been through several trials with him in order to have this unshakable trust and faith in him!
She muttered, "If there is really such a good man, I will like to meet him someday. Just to know what he looks like."
Youxue smiled, "It is a pity that you won't have the chance anymore or else I will be worried that I have one more competitor!"
Yang Min laughed softly, "This you do not need to worry. Even if we were to survive, I am too disappointed in mortal affairs to be interested in any men. I will focus on my celestial practice."
All of a sudden, she grew solemn as she looked at Yixian. "Revelation Star…Yixian…even though you claim you are not her but at least you are the mistress of the Heavenly Earth Sword now. Do you know that the Heavenly Earth Sword harbors a secret?"
Yixian asked nonchalantly, "Even if it does, does it matter now?"
Yang Min said quietly, "Maybe it does matter. It is the only sword that I know that contains the Universal Force. There is a reason. It goes all the way back to the first founder of the Melody Palace. The true name of the Heavenly Earth Sword is the Heavenly Tears…"
Yixian asked suddenly, "How did you know? I didn't hear Shi Shi mentions anything like this before to me."
Yang Min sighed softly, "Even though Shi Shi is the mistress of the Heavenly Earth Sword, she didn't know about it. My protégé mistress sworn me to secrecy before she passed away. After her passing, the Heavenly Earth Sword was hand over to Shi Shi as my other protégé mistresses felt that she was more suitable to lead the Melody Palace."
Yixian muttered, "Heavenly Tears…"
Yang Min continued, "The Universal Force of the Heavenly Earth Sword seals a secret celestial formation. What exactly it is, I really do not know. Even my protégé mistress did not know what it is. What we do know is that in order to unseal the Universal Force outside of the Celestial Star Formation, the possessor of the Heavenly Earth Sword must first know the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Formula. I have been seeking for the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Formula for a long time but without any results. It seems that other than the first founder of the Melody Palace who had knowledge of it, the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Formula is lost forever."
She sighed softly, "My protégé mistress told me there was a rumor that the first founder of the Melody Palace actually sealed it the Heavenly Earth Sword on purpose. Maybe our grand patriarch sealed it as a precaution to prevent misuse should the other celestial practitioners seize it…"
All of a sudden, she noticed that Yixian and Youxue had a queer expression on them. She asked, "What is wrong?"
Yixian looked at Yang Min with a curious look, "That is weird, isn't it? I do know the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Formula. Or maybe it is a similar naming skill. However, the Icy Heavenly Tears Intricate Formula that I know is a secret divine skill of the Eternal Ice Palace and is only taught to the direct protégés of the Eternal Ice Palace. I don't see any connections with the Melody Palace…"
Youxue was also startled. After pondering for a while, she asked Yixian. "Maybe there is a connection after all. How did the Eternal Ice Palace come to possess the White Phoenix? Why did the Heavenly Earth Sword decides to appear only to you? Why?"
Yixian shook her head, "I do not know but all these aren't important right now."
Yang Min smiled weakly, "That is right. How are we going to leave is the most important thing to consider right now. Unless something miraculous really happens, I really don't see how we are going to pull through this crisis…"
All of a sudden, there was a commotion outside, startling them!
Youxue muttered, "Have we been discovered? That is a little too soon?"
Yixian stepped elegantly forward fearlessly as she called softly, "What is inevitable has to come eventually. There is nothing to fear. Death and life is predestined. Let's go…"
But Yang Min said, "Wait. Listen at the commotions first…"
Yixian and Youxue halted their steps as they extended their hearings.
"There are attackers outside the camp now!"
"These are on our side but the ones behind are not!"
"Who can possibly injure the Martial Deviant Masters and several other epitome fighters at the same time?"
"Aren't they the ones that have intruded earlier? I recognize these maidens…"
"That is the Celeste Wind Maiden? The Celestial Aiel Sect is here?!"
Yixian gasped, "Let's have a look!"
Immediately, Yixian and Youxue pulled the opening of the tents and were startled to see Yi Ping, Lie Qing, Lele, the Stellar Heaven Fairy, the Chaste Lunar Maiden, Yunzi and a maiden that they did not recognized!
Yang Min was startled, "Shi Shi, Jing'Er! They are here…isn't that the Celeste Wind Maiden?"
Yi Ping and the rest of the maidens were being surrounded by hundreds of celestial practitioners. That included Bai Liangong and Yong Le the Right Protector!
They had actually the tenacity to storm the camps of the Martial Deviant Clan and her allies!
Yi Ping appeared to be looking extremely pale and judging from his conditions, his injuries were not light. However from his spirited and determined look, he seemed to be surrounded by an undying fighting spirit and the righteousness that he had always carried was none the diminished by his injuries!
When Yang Min first saw Yi Ping, she was very startled. In fact, her heart became fluttered and she was secretly gasping to herself. "Such a good man actually exists? Is he crazy? He actually dares to come here very well knowing that death is a certainty? I don't believe…"
Youxue was teary as she muttered, "He is alive…he has actually comes for us?"
Yixian said with a kindly smile, "I am so glad that he is alive but he shouldn't have come. It is better to sacrifice just the two of us than everyone…"
What she had said did not match the joyous expressions that were on her face!