On the morning of the fifth day, in the quiet mist-covered barren mountains, a group of people was setting up a tent on the wild overgrown grass. Boxes of equipment were being transported and put into place.
A thin and weak looking youth was meticulously spraying insect repellent powder around their living quarters. He turned back and saw his Shibo her highness sitting on a stone and leisurely using a cloth to wipe a short and flat point sword.
“Shibo, it’s so hot out here, why don’t you go inside the tent?”
“This tent is too green.” The woman admired the weapon in her hand and answered absentmindedly.
The youth choked a little then sighed: “Shibo, just say so if you don’t want to go in with them. This is a green tent, not a green hat. You still have to sleep in it at night.”
The woman glared at him: “How dare you bicker with me. Is it because I haven’t given you a beating in a while that your head’s filled with grease?! Listen well, stinky boy, except for Zhen Mu that simpleton, do not believe anyone else, they’re all living ghosts that are capable of swallowing you.”
The young man named Xiao Luo respectfully nodded and happily replied: “I understand. Other than Zhen Mu and Zhen Bei, and also Shibo, I will not be bothered with anyone else.”
“Not Zhen Mu and Zhen Bei, only Zhen Mu.”
“Ha? Why?” Xiao Luo was surprised.
The woman squinted: “That kid Zhen Bei…. I always feel that he’s evil.”
Xiao Luo scratched his head and thought: Ai, this is probably a woman’s sixth sense. Even so, he treated her words with importance. After being taught by her for so many years, he trusted her the most.
With that, he packed their secret insect repellent powder and went back to the tent to check their equipment.
As for the woman, once she saw Zhen Mu coming out of the tent with his bronze sword, she beamed brilliantly: “Zhen Mu! Second son of the Zhen family! Come, come! We haven’t seen each other for so long yet you don’t even come and say hi. Here, let me check your Chang Feng!”
Zhen Mu was a little evasive towards the woman but hearing her request of checking his weapon, he came forward with a straight face and greeted softly: “Lei Jie.” (TN: jie is a form of address towards an older female. I’ll be referring to her as Lei Jie instead of sister Lei.)
Lei Jie had a wide grin on her face as she cast aside the knife in her hand and took over the bronze sword from Zhen Mu. She carefully stroked the body of the sword named Chang Feng.
Lei Jie’s family had been swordsmiths for many generations. The craftsmen in the family were all crazy about creating the perfect sword to the point of sacrificing everything else. This was also the reason for her fascination with ancient weapons and why she joined this particular line of work.
“Long time no see, and you’re still beautiful as ever…” Lei Jie said tenderly to the sword. Its masters’ love did not cause the sword to become weak, its blade remained sharp as it had always been even after so many years. Lei Jie was only given the chance to repair it twice and if it wasn’t for Zhen Mu’s unwillingness to part with his beloved sword and that he had saved her disciple, she would have tried to get it from him at any price!
Lei Jie took her cloth and carefully wiped the sword, cleaning every nook and cranny. As her special cloth slid along the edge, a light buzzing sound could be heard from the friction.
Zhen Mu sat quietly on the boulder beside her as she admired the sword.
After some time, she asked: “Your family’s eldest son Zhen Hao…. Did he receive some kind of injury when he was young?”
Surprise sprang up on Zhen Mu’s sharp and handsome face. He earnestly recalled and said: “That shouldn’t be.”
Lei Jie let out an oh and said: “Then why is it that I find him stupid?”
Zhen Mu: “…..”
Lei Jie squinted as she carefully observed the sword while saying: “I’ve always been straightforward, don’t mind my rudeness. I’m an old lady and maybe my eyesight is getting worst but everyone in the circle knows how treacherous that old dog Yan can be. He can swallow your brother whole and not even spit out his bones. Not to mention his lawless and unruly underlings. Your brother is so stupid that he gives the man everything. The way I see it, sooner or later he’s bound to be killed!”
“And that rotten luck mother of yours still wants you to protect him. Are you sure you can do that? It’s already a big fortune if you can get out of there alive.”
Zhen Mu grimaced in silence before saying: “I know you’re looking out for me, thank you Lei Jie.”
“Tsk.” Lei Jie knew he had wood for brains and did not say much. She handed back Chang Feng to him with much hesitation and said: “Advice is not well received by those who deserved to die. Also, beware of that little brother of yours.”
As swordsmiths, they were very sensitive to the sharpness and auras of weapons, the same goes to people.
“My little brother…” Zhen Mu shook his head, “My little brother is a good kid. Lei Jie, you’re overthinking. And one more thing, if something happened to me, you can have this sword but please look after my brother and get him out. Please?”
Lei Jie gazed up and down at him: “Ai Yo, what are you talking about. I wasn’t trying to drive a wedge between anyone. Besides, if you can’t even survive then how am I capable of saving your brother?”
Zhen Mu smiled: “Lei Jie, others may not know it but I’m fully aware of your skills. And also your sole purpose here is for those famed weapons, not the treasures, there’s no lost trust between us.”
Lei Jie glanced at him then at the Chang Feng sword in his hand. In the end, she listlessly gave him her word.
“Ai~ If I could so much as peek at Liao Yue sword and Kai Ming this time, I’ll gladly die in there!”
Having received her promise, Zhen Mu also smiled with relief.
In the tent, Zhen Hao was sitting motionlessly while fanning himself with a fan. He had his eyes half-closed as he listened to Mr. Yan giving out instructions.
“Xiao Li, you have good martial arts, you’ll stay in the front with Zhen Mu. If you sense anything wrong, send a signal to retreat.”
“Tiezi and Chunlei, you’ll be protecting Mr. Zhen.”
The two named Tiezi and Chunlei nodded with a smile and said: “Don’t worry, brother Yan.”
“Finally, I’ll tell you the positions to avoid the traps. One more person will stay above ground just in case. Ah Shui, you’ll stay here.”
“Oh right, what about that woman and her apprentice?” Zhen Hao opened his frowning eyes and asked.
The man’s face remained expressionless: “They will follow us down. That woman and her apprentice are powerful. Just let them do whatever they want. Regardless, they still have to follow our instructions for safety.”
“Alright.” Zhen Hao reluctantly nodded.
Wen Feng Jin treated Mu Yi in front of him like the former subordinate of many years ago as he gave out orders.
“If you can’t tell your opponent’s strengths, feel free to test them out or just kill them. But Mu Yi, remember this, those bearing the scent as the person before are not to be killed. Absolutely not, understood?”
Click click click. Mu Yi made sounds from his throat, indicating he had understood. The few monsters behind him did the same.
“Very good.” Wen Feng Jin nodded with satisfaction, “Go on to your respective position. And remember my words.”
The troop of ferocious-looking monsters turned and in a flash, disappeared into the tomb’s passageway. When he turned back, Wang Xiao Mie was standing behind him.
“Xiao Mie?” Wen Feng Jin froze for a second. He lowered his face, then looked up with a smile, “How long have you been here? I didn’t hear you come in.”
Wang Xiao Mie rubbed his sleepy eyes: “I only just came. I woke up and didn’t see you so I came here to look. Mu Yi and the others already left? What did you tell them to do?”
Wen Feng Jin narrowed his eyes and went up to Wang Xiao Mie, pulling away his hand that was rubbing his eyes. He gently used his thumb to rub his eyes for him.
“Don’t rub so hard, it’ll hurt your eye.”
“Oh~” Wang Xiao Mie did not mind Wen Feng Jin not answering the question. He stood with his hands hanging and chin raised, obediently allowing himself to be wiped.
“If I’m not wrong, they will come down here tonight to scout but won’t go too far in. You have to carry your dagger at all times.”
“I know.” Wang Xiao Mie turned his head and slowly opened his eyes, feeling much better. He reached into his clothes and pulled out the dagger. The weapon was simple in design and black in color. There were no intricate carvings and only the words ‘Kai Ming’ was etched on the handle.
“I always have it on me.”
Wen Feng Jin took back his hand and slowly walked him back.
Wang Xiao Mie waved his dagger and sighed: “Tell me, what’s the use of this thing? It’s sooo short. An inch shorter, an inch more dangerous. This will be the death of me. The attacker is already at my throat and I can’t even reach his stomach.”
(TN: What he meant is that because the weapon is short, he had to get closer to the opponent to kill him, making it more dangerous)
Wen Feng Jin chuckled and explained to him: “This Kai Ming dagger is considered a godly weapon back in those days. It was forged by a master swordsman and later, passed on to an assassin to kill a tyrant king. Because it carried the hope of getting rid of tyrants and opening up the world, it was given the name Kai Ming. This dagger is extremely sharp. It is capable of cutting through heavenly soldiers and has killed countless cold-blooded kings and nobles. As long as it senses an evil person close by, it will give off heat as a warning.”
“Ha? It’s that incredible?!” Wang Xiao Mie immediately saw the dagger in a new light. Its black color was like a soothing design choice and even the tiny scratches were proof that it had been through many battles.
He suddenly thought of something and asked Wen Feng Jin: “You said it will turn hot when it’s near bad people. You’re by my side now and nothing’s happening! Are you lying to me?!”
Wen Feng Jin: “…..”
Wen Feng Jin: “…..Shixiong, I’m actually a good person.”
“…..” Wang Xiao Mie was speechless.
He eyed Wen Feng Jin from head to toe in his black and red robe. Wen Feng Jin unconsciously tried to paint himself in a gentle light with a smile but with his black eyes and the scarlet mark on his forehead, the smile only added a touch of evil to his perfect villain appearance.
“…..tell me the truth.” Wang Xiao Mie pressed the dagger to his chest.
“…..” Wen Feng Jin stood his ground, “I’m a good man. Look, even Kai Ming approves.”
The dagger touching his chest gave out a hum…..it was turning hot.
Wang Xiao Mie looked away from Wen Feng Jin. The devil’s face was too beautiful, he dared not look.
“I’ll say this again, tell me the truth.”
The mesmerizing boss Wen finally gave in to Wang Xiao Mie’s questioning and told him the truth.
“When I first got hold of Kai Ming many years ago, I was quite intrigued by it. For fun, I would keep it on me through the winter…..for warmth.”
Kai Ming, the legendary dagger, was becoming increasingly hot as if crying out to Wang Xiao Mie, telling him its grievance of after being used as a portable heater for so many years, it was too lazy to produce heat in Wen Feng Jin’s presence and could only cry silent tears.